9 Healthy Fast-Casual Spots to Hit in 2016

by in Restaurants, January 13th, 2016

2015 saw a boom in the fast-casual restaurant market, with new concepts following the “build-your-own” Chipotle model opening up left and right, and more established healthy chains spreading rapidly across the country. When custom-building a salad, wrap or bowl is in your hands, it’s certainly possible to create a calorie bomb of a meal, but these chains offer nutritious, thoughtfully sourced ingredients so it’s never difficult to eat healthfully. Here are nine spots to seek out in 2016. Read more

Pistachio Loaf — Bake-Ahead Batches

by in Recipes, January 12th, 2016

Pistachio LoafI’m a pistachio fiend. I love pistachio ice cream, pistachio cakes and pistachio candies. I even use bright-green pistachio oil to make delicious salad dressings. Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever met a pistachio I didn’t like. Read more

16 Kid-Friendly Recipes That Will End Dinnertime Meltdowns This Year

by in Family, Recipes, January 12th, 2016

Easy Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese CroutonsThis is it: The ultimate, every-kid-likes-it list of crowd-pleasing recipes you’ll want to add to your rotation for 2016. Featuring fresh takes on classic kid favorites like chicken, and mac and cheese, each recipe is kid-tested and full of fresh ingredients, yet still easy enough for busy parents to prepare.

Easy Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons
Ina Garten has a match made in heaven with this dish featured in Food Network Magazine. Even kids who aren’t into soup will love fishing a crouton out of her zesty tomato soup … if it happens to be a tasty bite of grilled cheese sandwich.

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Our Best Cheesy Baked Macs to Try Now

by in Recipes, January 12th, 2016

Staying in next weekend? There’s no better way to pass the time than dipping your fork into a bubbling scoop of baked mac and cheese. We’ve got just the recipes to keep your oven occupied, from ham and Fontina-laced mac to a smoky bacon rendition loaded with pepper Jack. With 5 stars and over 100 reviews, these six takes on the classic comfort dish will surely hit the spot.

Ina’s Mac and Cheese (pictured at top)
Ina Garten enhances mac and cheese by using Gruyère in addition to cheddar, the classic star. When selecting a cheddar, go for the extra-sharp variety — Gruyère’s bold, earthy flavor complements the creamy bite.

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Fall-Off-the-Bone Goodness: The Top 5 Ribs in the Nation — Vote for Your Favorite

by in Shows, January 12th, 2016

Barbecue RibsBarbecue lovers, you’ve come to the right place. Top 5 Restaurants just revealed the best places to get barbecue ribs, including the dry-rubbed variety and ones slathered in sauce. But when it comes to ribs, does the style really matter? Not when these ribs are cooked to perfection and packed with flavor from end to end. From North Carolina to New Mexico, we’ve got the restaurants that made the list.

Find out which dishes made the list and vote on your favorite

Burnt Veggies Are the Latest Thing

by in News, January 11th, 2016

Burnt Veggies Are the Latest ThingBurnt meals used to be the mark of a distracted cook or an unfortunate mistake. Nowadays, though, the blackened and blistered, the smoky and singed, is not only acceptable, but, the Wall Street Journal reports, increasingly desirable and totally on trend.

“Restaurant menus are rife with charred, browned, crisped and blistered dishes, and the trend is catching on with home cooks as well,” Cecilie Rohwedder recently observed in the Journal. “Cooking shows, blogs and magazines are propagating ways to burn food artfully. Kitchenware companies are rolling out products ranging from grill tools and cast iron griddles to small blowtorches.”

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Chicken and Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Bowls — Party of Two

by in Recipes, January 11th, 2016

Chicken and Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Bowls — Party of TwoHappy New Year! It’s a brand-new year and a chance to change something in your life that you may think needs a positivity boost. For many, the start of a new year means the start of eating more mindfully and getting in the kitchen to cook at home more and eat out less. If that’s what you and your other half have resolved to try, this month’s Party of Two recipe — easy, satisfying quinoa bowls — is for you.

Overflowing with sauteed chicken and sweet roasted veggies, like butternut squash and carrots, these bowls are chock-full of protein — chicken and quinoa — to keep you full. (You will be surprised at how satiated you feel after eating a bowl of this!) When it comes to the Greek vinaigrette, that’s optional; you can drizzle it on top of these bowls or save it for a hearty salad later. Perhaps best of all is that this recipe is ideally portioned for two people. Check out more recipes like this one by browsing past Party of Two how-tos.

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Healthy Farro Fried “Rice” — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, January 11th, 2016

Healthy Farro Fried Meet your new favorite grain: farro. This hearty ingredient is a staple in Italian cooking and is similar in look and texture to the everyday barley you likely already know. It’s prepared like barley, and rice, too; all you need to do to guarantee a just-right chewy texture is boil the farro for a few minutes. According to the chefs in Food Network Kitchen, farro is “often added to soups and risotto but works as a terrific substitute for rice in this easy stir-fry.”

Just as an ordinary stir-fry stars colorful veggies and a tangy sauce, so too does this quick-fix dinner, featuring vibrant carrot, peas and pea sprouts. Scrambled eggs give the stir-fry added heft, while chopped ginger and rich soy sauce add bold flavor and cool scallions deliver a welcome freshness. Since the farro can be boiled and cooled a day ahead, the rest of the stir-fry comes together in a hurry — all you’ll need to do is warm it up, just as you would cooked rice — which means that it’s indeed possible to turn out a healthy, satisfying supper on even the busiest of weeknights.

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Revamp Your Desk Lunch with Just-Add-Water Meals

by in Recipes, January 11th, 2016

Avoid the sad-desk-lunch rut in 2016 by kicking things off with these genius just-add-water meals from Food Network Kitchen. No matter if your limited office “kitchen” doesn’t even have a microwave. All you need is boiling water from the coffeemaker and you’ve got a hot, satisfying lunch. Read more

“Let’s Get This Party Popping” — Testing the Cutthroat Kitchen Sabotages

by in Shows, January 10th, 2016

The garlic crusher, lemon squeezer, apple corer — each seems to serve only one purpose in the kitchen. But on tonight’s all-new episode of Cutthroat Kitchen, one chef proved that another such item, the popcorn popper, isn’t just for popping kernels. The name of the game was jalapeno poppers, and a sabotage forced a competitor to make that dish using only a traditional tabletop popcorn machine for a sole source of heat. Before host Alton Brown auctioned off this downright diabolical challenge, the Cutthroat culinary crew got to work in the latest installment of Testing the Sabotages to make sure it was in fact feasible.

“Let’s get this party popping,” food stylist Abel Gonzalez joked as he prepared to drop his stuffed and breaded jalapeno into the pot of hot oil within the machine. Though it may seem easy enough to let the popper cook in the oil, he noted that there’s “a spinning, agitating device” inside the small container, and it would “mess with my poppers,” he said. “I don’t know if it’s going to, like, knock most of the breading off,” he added. While the breading stayed mostly attached to the pepper, removing the popper from the oil proved to be trickiest moment of the test. “This isn’t as easy as it looks,” Abel said as he tried to maneuver his tongs into the machine and grab the popper. He managed to grab it once and for all, and what emerged from the oil was indeed a jalapeno popper that he deemed “pretty decent.”

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