All Posts In Recipes

7 Kid-Tested Freezer Meals That’ll Change Your Life

by in Family, Recipes, April 27th, 2015

7 Kid-Tested Freezer Meals That'll Change Your LifeEvery afternoon was the same at my house: tired kids running around, alternately asking for snacks, playing and fighting. I was distracted in the kitchen trying to get a fresh meal on the table — something that didn’t come out of a sack and something that would nourish us. Then I discovered how to use my freezer to cook dinner.

Now when I’m prepping dinner, I can double (or split) it into two portions, one for now and one for later. Not every recipe will cooperate, but these family-friendly dishes work beautifully for just such a job:

Honey-Mustard Chicken: If you try nothing else, try this one that our kids love. Chicken thighs (or breasts) bake in a simple sweet sauce; double the recipe and throw half into a baking dish for dinner and the other serving into a zip-top bag bound for the freezer. Serve both over your favorite grain to soak up all that juice.

Giada De Laurentiis’ Baked Penne with Roasted Vegetables: A one-pot meal brimming with fresh veggies like zucchini, summer squash and peppers sounds perfect for spring, but Giada’s penne goes the extra kid-friendly mile with two kinds of cheeses. Prep the entire recipe and pour into two pans (or double it for large groups); cook one pan and cover the other with foil for the freezer.

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5 Unexpected Strawberry Desserts

by in Recipes, April 25th, 2015

From shortcake and pie to fruit salads and parfaits, this ruby-red berry is the star of some classic desserts. While no one can deny the appeal of traditional combinations — like strawberries and rhubarb, or strawberries and whipped cream — this versatile fruit pairs well with infinite other ingredients. Here are a few unexpected flavor combos to help you experience strawberries in a whole new light.

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Why Side Salads Are the Best Salads — Sensational Sides

by in Recipes, April 23rd, 2015

Why Side Salads Are the Best SaladsThe utterance “I’m going to get a salad” often evinces visions of diets and other streaks of healthy eating. But, if you’re asking me, leafy greens and their accompaniments are anything but punishment. On the contrary, our favorite green salads emanate fresh vibrancy with every invigorating bite. Plus, when they’re enjoyed as a main dish, they bring a certain brightness to the main event. Next time you’re on the hunt for a side dish, think of these glorious side salad recipes for all kinds of leafy greens.

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5 New Ways to Stuff a Pepper

by in Recipes, April 22nd, 2015

Sweet and Sour Couscous-Stuffed PeppersWhen it comes to naturally clever culinary designs, not much can beat the bell pepper; when cooked, its thin yet sturdy skin becomes sweet and tender without breaking down, and its hollow center provides built-in stuffing possibilities. While most traditional fillings tend to focus on rice, any hearty grain-and-vegetable combo works well as a stuffing, and since peppers are known to walk the flavor line among several different cuisines — think Asian, Italian and Creole — there’s no limit to ingredient pairings. Check out these best-ever stuffed pepper ideas below to get Guy Fieri’s take on a classic, plus Rachael Ray’s and Giada De Laurentiis’ top-rated versions, as well as two more must-try plates.

5. Turkey and Quinoa Stuffed Peppers — Guy opts for a two-tiered approach to texture in his easy-to-make peppers: First he adds a handful of toasted pepitas to the kale-laced filling, then he tops the filling with a layer of crispy, cheesy breadcrumbs before baking.

4. Cajun Stuffed Peppers — Precooking the peppers in the microwave ensures that these quick-fix peppers from Food Network Magazine are simple to prepare in a hurry, while the andouille sausage-studded filling promises bold Cajun flavor.

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The Classic and the Kid-Friendly: 2 Approaches to the Strawberry-Rhubarb Combo

by in Family, Recipes, April 21st, 2015

The Classic and the Kid-Friendly: 2 Approaches to the Strawberry-Rhubarb ComboI can still taste the tang of fresh rhubarb as my mom picked long stalks of the stuff from our garden as a kid. (I also remember yelling to my friends who always seemed to be grabbing it for a snack, “No! That’s not celery!”) But what a transformation: How soft rhubarb became in the oven, set in a custard pie filling along with sweet strawberries. Strawberry-rhubarb is the killer combination of spring. So as those first stalks are spotted in markets everywhere, these recipes are on our radar:

The Classic Approach:

1. Rhubarb Custard Pie: This is it! This is exactly the sweet and creamy pie I remember, the one I’ll make for our kids this spring.

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The Pioneer Woman’s Easy Greek Salad — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, April 20th, 2015

Easy Greek SaladThe key to a satisfying salad is balance, of flavor and of texture, and with her go-to recipe for Easy Greek Salad (pictured above), The Pioneer Woman hits that mark — and in only 20 speedy minutes.

When it comes to toppings, Ree looks to chopped cucumbers and juicy tomatoes to provide bright, cool tastes alongside fresh romaine, while crumbly feta promises welcome richness and subtle tang, and for a salty bite, she folds in briny Kalamata olives ahead of adding the vinaigrette. Follow her lead and whisk a pinch of sugar into the dressing; this will help mellow the otherwise bold flavors of the red wine vinegar and garlic. Just before serving, reach for a bit more feta, and add a final squeeze of lemon juice to wake up the salad with refreshing brightness.

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Beyond the Muffin Tin: 2 New Ways to Transform Cornbread

by in Recipes, April 18th, 2015

2 New Ways to Transform Corn BreadA classic cornbread recipe is a must-have in any kitchen, but once you’ve mastered the basics, it’s time to dress up the usual fare and set your sights on next-level interpretations. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, Sunny Anderson and Jeff Mauro introduced two fresh spins on this tried-and-true favorite, both savory and satisfying dishes that go beyond the ordinary comfort food.

Part casserole and part bread, Sunny’s Tex-Mex Spoonbread boasts layer upon layer of flavor: first buttery browned chorizo, then a loose grits-style cornmeal mixture made light and fluffy thanks to a few whipped eggs. To make sure there’s plenty of texture in her spoonbread, Sunny adds a handful of corn kernels to the cornmeal batter, plus a duo of gooey cheeses for over-the-top richness. After baking in the oven, this big-batch dish turns out golden brown along the edges and fully set in the middle.

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5 Quirky Grain Switch-Ups You Gotta Try — Sensational Sides

by in Recipes, April 16th, 2015

Healthy Farro Fried Amazing grains, how sweet the sound! (That is how the song goes … right?) Either way, there’s no denying the awesome powers of whole grains. Beyond the obvious health benefits of swapping them in for pasta, white rice and more, using grains as a nourishing alternative brings a welcome quirkiness to your go-to side dishes.

1. Take the rice out of your fried rice by using farro instead.

The glory of digging fried rice out of a takeout container could never be fully replaced, but making a good grain swap is a sure way to keep things interesting. Look to farro, an Italian grain of wheat that’s satisfyingly tender and chewy, for Healthy Farro Fried “Rice” (pictured above) that ups the texture of the classic Asian staple.

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Bakers’ Dozens: Perfect Crumb Cake

by in How-to, Recipes, April 15th, 2015

Leaving a trail of crumbs helps you find your way.

I joked as a kid that I would need to leave a trail of crumbs into the kitchen so my mom could find her way. She would swear she couldn’t find it. After all, she wanted to turn our kitchen into a library. No one in my family baked. We all had a passion for sweets. The only sweet things baked in my house were brownies from my Easy-Bake Oven. I had zero kitchen training.

My first real attempt at baking started with a classic coffee cake. Read more

6 Ways to Spice Up Pizza Night

by in Recipes, April 14th, 2015

Everyone from busy moms to college students knows the ease of grabbing a quick slice of pizza or a pie for the family. Most pizzerias have an array of classic options that never seem to get old, and all of that cheesy goodness never disappoints. While your favorite local joint’s pizza is probably hard to replicate, there are plenty of ways you can spice up pizza night from home. Read on for some out-of-the-box ideas like mini pizza muffins and warm pizza dip.

Pepperoni Pizza Pocket (pictured above)
The ultimate hand-held food becomes even more portable when you follow Jeff Mauro’s recipe for pizza pockets. Just load up premade dough rounds with pepperoni and cheese, and pop them in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes. Serve with Jeff’s slow-simmering sauce for an unforgettable weeknight treat.

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