by Maria Russo in Recipes, October 12th, 2015
by Maria Russo in Recipes, October 5th, 2015
While some recipes require a bit of (worthwhile) finagling to make them meatless, macaroni and cheese isn’t one of them. Kids and adults, meat eaters and vegetarians, picky eaters and voracious culinarians — seemingly everyone is pleased when a bowl of piping-hot, ooey-gooey mac and cheese is set before them.
When it comes to classic recipes, this one for baked macaroni and cheese and this one for the stovetop variety are go-to places to start. But for a next-level twist on the traditional version, try Sunny Anderson’s 5-star Spicy Macaroni and Cheese (pictured above). It boasts all of the cheesy richness you crave — there are a whopping three kinds of cheeses in this indulgent recipe — but the pinch of cayenne adds a welcome boost of heat. To add to the creamy texture in this big-batch casserole, Sunny adds a bit of tangy sour cream to the cheese mixture, and then she balances out that texture with a crispy-crunchy topping of buttery croutons.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, September 28th, 2015
With the return of crisp fall air, you’re likely craving something especially warm and comforting, and this big-batch soup indeed fits the bill. While soup is surely a go-to meatless option, many times its lack of heft leaves you unsatisfied and ready to eat again in just a little while. That’s not the case with this healthy — and speedy — Tuscan Vegetable Soup (pictured above), thanks to one key ingredient: cannellini beans. These protein-packed beauties, along with the myriad of vegetables, like carrots, celery and zucchini, as well as fresh spinach, pack the hearty punch you need to tide you over.
Not only do the beans deliver heft, but they also lend texture to this top-rated soup; when you mash some of them, the soup will turn creamy without the addition of cream. Bold garlic and a duo of fresh herbs further the bold flavors, while a sprinkle of Parmesan just before serving promises a nutty bite. Since a batch of this soup can be on the table in just 35 minutes, it’s a go-to pick for when you’re in a hurry come lunchtime.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, September 21st, 2015
Kale salads are on menus everywhere these everywhere these days — and for good reason. This hearty green is packed with good-for-you nutrients and plays well with other flavors and textures, making it a go-to salad base, since it will be complemented by the other ingredients you add.
While everyday salads of just kale and dressing are a good place to start, in her recipe for Farro and Kale Salad Giada De Laurentiis dresses up the greens — she opts for the Tuscan variety of kale — with Italian-inspired tastes to create an easy yet elegant salad that’s satisfying enough to enjoy for dinner. Chopped walnuts add a welcome crunchy texture, while farro, an Italian grain like wheat, and dried cherries add a chewy bite. Mix up a citrus-laced vinaigrette to round out the flavors, and just before serving add crumbled goat cheese; you won’t want to pass up that creamy tang.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, September 14th, 2015
No longer relegated to layers of red sauce and heaps of meat, lasagna takes a turn for the creamy — and surprisingly healthy — with this big-batch recipe for Squash and Spinach Lasagna (pictured above).
Food Network Kitchen swaps out the traditional marinara or meat sauce in favor of a mixture of onions and fresh spinach in a milk-based sauce made thick with the help of cornstarch. Layer chopped butternut squash for color and an added boost of nutrition, and opt for part-skim mozzarella to keep the casserole light but satisfying. Perhaps the best part about this recipe is that it comes together with no-boil noodles, which means that you can assemble them in the casserole straight from the box; they’ll soak up the liquid of the cream sauce and become tender as they cook in the oven.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, September 7th, 2015
Much like a pizza crust, a tortilla is a blank culinary canvas; there are hardly any rules for what you can and can’t stuff inside it or pile on top of it. While some of the most-classic approaches are the fan-favorite taco or fajita, how you put those together is up to you. When it comes to making meatless fajitas, beans are surely a go-to pick, but when you want to try something new, look to eggs to bulk up the meal.
Ready to eat in only 30 quick minutes, Food Network Magazine’s Cheesy Scrambled Egg Fajitas (pictured above) make for a hearty breakfast as well as a quick-fix dinner. Just like traditional fajitas, these feature tender sauteed peppers and onions, plus buttery scrambled eggs, which add welcome heft. Don’t forget to add a decadent bite with Monterey Jack or pepper Jack cheese as the eggs finish cooking — it will slowly melt within minutes. Fill warm tortillas with the fluffy eggs, plus the colorful veggies, then top with a quick-fix combination of creamy avocado, juicy tomatoes and a jalapeno for subtle heat.
by Christie Bok in Recipes, August 31st, 2015
Summer’s not technically over, though the kids are going back to school. The days are turning brisker, though it’s not yet cold. Summer tomatoes are ripe from the garden, but you’re craving something hearty. What to make, what to do? Look no further than Food Network Magazine’s Tuscan Tomato-White Bean Soup (pictured above), ideal for those in-between days in early September.
Featuring a fresh, bright base of juicy seasonal tomatoes, plus the creamy richness of canned white beans, this easy-to-make soup comes together in less than an hour with little hands-on prep. For a subtle punch of bold flavor, sprinkle in red pepper flakes, then let the flavors of the soup marry as the soup simmers before you blend it into a smooth, rich consistency. To round out the bowl, sprinkle a few cheesy croutons on top just before serving; these crispy-crunchy bites can be made quickly in the oven with bread cubes and gooey mozzarella.
by Christie Bok in Recipes, August 24th, 2015
There’s no denying that Mondays can sometimes feel like an abrupt transition from the relaxing weekend. So what better way to spice things up than by putting a fun twist on an ordinary recipe? Follow Bobby Flay’s lead with his Grilled Ratatouille (pictured above).
A classic French dish that combines eggplant, squash, peppers and herbs, ratatouille is a beautiful blend of colors and textures. Bobby transforms these fresh veggies — plus red onion and tomatoes — into a flavorful grilled meal in under 35 minutes. The key to perfectly grilling these vegetables is coating them with enough olive oil and turning them throughout the cooking process to ensure they do not stick or burn. Bobby also removes the tomatoes before the other veggies, as they cook a bit quicker. Once the other veggies are grilled, toss them with the tomatoes along with olive oil, garlic, oregano and parsley for a fragrant finish. Serve at room temperature or pack up for a picnic-ready meal.
by Christie Bok in Recipes, August 17th, 2015
During these sunny and sometimes sticky summer months, a refreshing meal can be just what you crave. And in the season where pasta and potato salad seems to be at every cookout and barbecue, it’s the perfect time to try a new chilled recipe like Food Network Kitchen’s Cold Soba Noodle Salad with Creamy Sesame Dressing (pictured above).
The secret to this dish is toasting the sesame seeds to deepen their natural nutty flavor. With just 4 to 5 minutes in a saute pan, these tiny seeds toast up quickly and are transformed with robust flavor. Food Network Kitchen purees the seeds in a blender with chile-garlic sauce, lemon and oil for a no-fuss creamy dressing with a subtle tang. Once the dressing is ready, drizzle it over spaghetti-like buckwheat soba noodles, which share a natural nuttiness with the sesame seeds. Lastly, top the noodles with a variety of fresh veggies. You’ll get a slight sweetness and bright color from the corn, plus a heartiness from the creamy avocado. Add in cucumber for that crisp and refreshing crunch that makes this meal a delicious summer go-to.
by Christie Bok in Recipes, August 10th, 2015
If you’re looking for a go-to meatless dish but are unsure how to make it satisfying without the meat, try opting for ingredients that are naturally high in protein, like quinoa. Not only is this superfood quick-cooking — making it much more desirable for weeknight dinners (how can you beat a 15-minute cooking time?) — but it is also the perfect blank canvas for adding fresh veggies, cheeses and herbs.
Play up this grain’s versatility with Ina Garten’s Quinoa Tabbouleh with Feta (pictured above) for Food Network Magazine. Ina makes this Mediterranean-inspired dish by tossing the cooked quinoa with a lemony olive oil mixture and plenty of bright herbs like parsley, mint and scallions. Perhaps the best thing about this dish is that it can be made ahead of time, which allows the citrus flavors to meld with the veggies and herbs. When you’re ready to eat, take it out of the refrigerator and fold in the feta cheese for a creamy tang.
Let’s face it: If you’re new to the no-meat-on-Mondays plan, eating a veggie-centric meal can be daunting. But the good news is there are a few tricks to not missing the meat, and perhaps the most important is playing up the vegetables with a variety of textures and flavors, just as Jeff Mauro does with his Fried Green Tomato Parm Sandwiches (pictured above).
The fun part about these Southern sandwiches — which make for a delicious addition to eat-with-your-hands barbecue and cookout food — is that kids can get involved, too. Set up an assembly line for the flour, eggs and breadcrumbs, and take turns battering the tomatoes before frying. Though the crispy texture of the green tomato stars in this classically Southern sandwich, Jeff puts an Italian twist on it by adding creamy Burrata cheese and canned tomatoes that he bakes until caramelized. Layer the cheese and two types of tomatoes on a soft brioche bun and top with giardiniera, a mixture of pickled vegetables, for a tangy bite.