Kid-Friendly Dinners

Easy Tomato Garlic Pasta
Easy Tomato Garlic Pasta

 

Pleasing everyone is no easy task.

Picky eaters (and all people in general) will love you even more after tasting these flavorful recipes.

Are you the one with choosy taste buds?

You should go and love yourself.

 

Chicken:

Are you a chicken in the kitchen? Try your hand at these totally doable recipes.

Oven Fried Chicken & Broccoli with Honey Garlic Sauce

You’ll be dumping that honey garlic sauce on nearly every edible substance.

20 Minute Basil Cashew Chicken

Because sometimes you don’t even have 21 minutes to spare.

Chicken Berry Salad

Salads don’t have to be boring. Juicy, sweet berries and protein-packed chicken breast take this green salad up a notch. Toss in nutty pecans for extra credit.

 

Seafood:

Seafood is brain food. A+ grades are no guarantee, but hey, anything is possible.

Parmesan Baked Cod

Not a huge fish fan? Crispy, cheesy fillets are a good place to start.

Shrimp Tacos

Wash these bad boys down with a thirst-quenching margarita… or a fruit smoothie for the kids.

Broiled Salmon Teriyaki

A little sweet, a little tangy, and a lot of yum. Serve with nutty brown rice and refreshing cucumber salad.

 

Meatless:

Chicken is just dandy, but meat isn’t always necessary. Save a few dollars by cooking a couple meatless dishes every week.

Freezer Ready Mini Pizzas

Who can say no to pizza? Whip up a big batch when ever you find yourself twiddling your thumbs then simply pull a few out of the freezer when your cheesy carb craving hits.

10 Minute Vegetable Quinoa “Fried Rice”

Requires even less time than ordering take out. Plus, you can use your favorite veggies! We like broccoli, peas, and carrots. Throw some green beans in there for a not so basic veg combo.

Tortilla Lime Soup

Garnish with creamy avocado slices… that’s more of a requirement than a suggestion. If you literally cannot live without cheese, go ahead and sprinkle on a hefty handful right before digging in.

 

Looking for more recipe inspo? Take a peak at crowd-pleasing dinners over here.

 

Frozen Treats

S'mores Ice Cream Cake
S’mores Ice Cream Cake

 

When you’re melting in the heat, even the most delicious warm berry pie may seem a little less than appetizing.

Cool down by savoring a frozen treat instead.

Just be sure to devour your sweet before it melts along with you.

 

Sandwiches:

Even more exciting than your favorite PB&J.

Churro French Toast Ice Cream Sandwich

Breakfast or dessert? Does it really matter?

Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwich

Chocolate chip cookies stuffed with chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream with a hot fudge drizzle. Need we say more?

Frozen Nutty Banana Nibblers

Snack time! Did we mention you only need 3 ingredients?

 

Beverages:

For when it’s too hot to even chew.

Salted Pretzel Nutella Fudge Milkshake

An epic milkshake for people with an epic sweet tooth. Bikini season is almost over anyway.

Blueberry Banana Coconut Milkshake

Already 98 degrees when you drag yourself out of bed in the morning? This refreshing milkshake will wake you right up. That’s right, milkshakes for brekkie.

Raspberry Peach Cocktail Slushies

Perfect with a side of fresh guac and tortilla chips. Poolside happy hour anyone? Just remember to digest for 30 minutes before attempting to doggy paddle.

 

Pops:

Summer just isn’t summer without icy cold pops. Plus, food on a stick is always better.

Watermelon Popsicles

Almost too cute to eat… almost.

Chocolate & Coconut Frozen Banana Pops

This dessert is borderline healthy, so clearly you can enjoy two or five in one sitting.

Cucumber-Lime Paletas

The definition of refreshing. A splash of tequila, gin, or vodka couldn’t hurt. Just don’t be too heavy-handed with the hard A or your pops won’t be able to freeze. #popfail

 

Don’t have a brain freeze yet? Take a peek at more cool treats.

 

You Can Can

Cherry Jam
Cherry Jam

 

Eyes bigger than your stomach?

Have enough produce to literally feed an army?

Shed tears of sadness during the winter when apples and bananas are the only option?

Preserve your summer goodies then enjoy them all year long.

 

Berries:

When life gives you berries on berries, make jam.

Blueberry-Lemon Jam

We recommend spooning this summery jam right over a big bowl of vanilla bean ice cream. (Or yogurt for a healthier option.)

Strawberry Jam

Perfect for those classic PB&J’s.

Triple Berry Jam

Because two berries is not always enough.

 

Fruity:

Give your morning toast routine a face-lift.

Mango Jam

Beach and palm trees not included.

Spiced Plum Jam

Spice averse people, don’t worry… it’s not actually spicy.

Cherry Jam

Pie takes too much effort. Just whip up this jam instead then call it a day.

 

Savory:

We get it, not everyone has a sweet tooth.

Pickled Green Beans

Excellent savory snacking material.

Tomatillo Salsa

You’re going to need a boatload of chips.

Pickled Peppers

How many pickled peppers did Peter Piper pick? Enough to make this here recipe.

You can keep on canning. Jams, pickles, and sauces make wonderful gifts! See more recipes.

Cooking in the Great Outdoors

S'mores
S’mores

 

Camping season is here!

And that doesn’t mean granola bars for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

If you can pitch a tent, you can certainly cook up some fine meals at your campsite.

 

Breakfast:

Everyone knows breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so you might as well do it right. Why settle for a cold bowl of cereal when you could whip up ooey gooey cinnamon rolls? Drool.

Breakfast Quesadilla

When the opportunity arises to consume cheese for breakfast, you take it.

Campfire Raspberry Double Dutch Baby

Think puffy cloud-like pancake pillow for your precious raspberries to rest their heads on. Don’t get too attached now.

Campfire Hash

Meat and potatoes for the meat and potatoes folks.

Dutch Oven Cinnamon Rolls

Overachievers, this one’s for you. Or people who happen to have a raging sweet tooth.

 

Snacks:

You’re going to need some extra fuel if you’re hiking up and down all over the place or burning excessive calories simply trying to set up that dang hammock.

Granola Bars

Hooray for  homemade! The money you save from making your own granola bars instead of buying them can go towards that extra comfy air mattress. And shiny new kayak. And cute hiking boots.

Sweet & Salty Trail Mix

There’s a reason why the sweet + salty combo is so addictive. Swap in your favorite nuts and dried fruit to suit your taste.

Crunchy Roasted Chickpeas

Not your average snack. These savory bites are a good source of protein and a great reward after you finally reach the top of that mountain.

Campfire Popcorn Satchels

You won’t be able to help feeling proud of yourself after popping corn right over that glorious fire that took 6 hours to get going.

 

Lunch & Dinner:

No no, driving over to your favorite fast food chain to grab a cheeseburger is not going to cut it. So lock up your coolers because “the squirrels ate all my food” is never a valid excuse.

Dutch Oven Stuffed Peppers

So good you might just have to whip up two batches.

Veggies & Dumplings

Tent collapsed for the 14th time? Forgot to pack extra socks? Comfort food is exactly what the doctor ordered.

Vegetarian Cashew Chili

Hearty, flavorful, and… vegetarian?! That’s right, this tasty chili is meatless and mighty fine at that. Great for times when you’re trying not to attract the woodland creatures.

Campfire Flat Iron Steak

Lions, tigers, and bears, oh my! If you’re willing (and able) to fight over a juicy steak, more power to yuh.

 

Treats:

Life wouldn’t be the same without sugar. If you’re a traditional person who loves traditional treats, there’s no shame in toasting up perfectly traditional s’mores. Or you could try something new and throw together blueberry cobbler right at the campsite like a boss.

Blueberry Cobbler

Not a fan of s’mores? Prepare this fruity, satisfying treat after a long day spent among the trees. You might have to forgo the ice cream though.

Chocolate Jar Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Oh you fancy huh? Bake these cuties at home then transport your treats to the campground. Make a few extras because your neighbors are guaranteed to be a little jealous.

S’mores

Puffed golden brown marshmallows, melty chocolate, subtly sweet graham crackers… you know what to do. If you’re especially good at burning things, please hand off the toasting duty to a more competent individual.

Campfire Cones

Kids love these. Adults love them even more. See who can successfully stuff the most mallows and choc chips into his or her cone.

 

Campfire still burning? See more recipes over here.

 

Let’s Have a Picnic

Multigrain Watercress & Cucumber Tea Sandwiches
Multigrain Watercress & Cucumber Tea Sandwiches

 

There’s something magical about enjoying a meal outside in the grass.

Maybe it’s the fact that clear blue sky and sunshine seem to make everything taste 548 times better.

Or perhaps you feel a bit rebellious (in the best way possible) by avoiding dining at an actual table.

Whether you’re sharing a few casual bites with friends, going all out for a family reunion, or trying to impress a hot date, we’ve got you covered.

 

Picnic Mains:

Picnic newbs, start with a simple sandwich or salad. If you consider yourself a picnic pro, try your hand at zucchini noodles or chicken satay.

Multigrain Watercress & Cucumber Tea Sandwiches

We recommend leaving the crusts on, but feel free to indulge your inner picky child.

Spicy Quinoa, Cucumber & Tomato Salad

Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free friends rejoice! This salad counts as a complete protein, plus you get some veg action. Carnivores, you’re welcome to join this quinoa party too.

Zucchini Noodles with Lemon-Garlic Shrimp

If summer had a taste, this dish would be it — light and refreshing with bursts of flavor in every bite.

Chicken Satay

This low-maintenance chicken can be enjoyed hot, room temp, or cold. So stop fussing over the temperature, but please make sure it’s actually safe to eat.

 

Picnic Snacks:

Pack a whole bunch of snacks and you might be able to forgo a main dish. Variety is the spice of life, after all.

Summer Caprese Skewers

Forget the fork. Enjoy this summertime favorite on a stick!

White Bean Dip

If you love pita as much as we do, this one should be a no-brainer.

French Bread

The French know how to picnic. Bake up your own fresh loaf of bread, then tear off bites and slather on the cheese. Or butter. (Or both.)

Garlic Dill Pickles

You could just settle for a store-bought jar… but why would you want to do that?

 

Picnic Sweets:

No picnic is complete without something sweet. Think hardy treats that won’t crumble or melt all over. There is a time and place for ice cream, and now is definitely not that time.

Peanut Butter Cookie Bars

Are you a peanut butter fanatic? These chewy peanut butter bars are packed with peanutty flavor, and they can definitely take a beating. No cookie dust here!

Old-Fashioned Raspberry Bars

Easy, sweet, buttery, and crunchy. Not into raspberries? Use your favorite fruity jam for the filling.

Cherry Hand Pies

That’s right, you can eat this pie with your hands. Pretty much the definition of finger food. Plus you don’t have to worry about cutting even slices… sweet tooth brawl avoided.

Lattice Top Peach Pie in a Jar

Keep all of those delicious peach juices contained in your own personal jar. How cute!

 

Food comes first! But don’t forget:

A) A comfy but sturdy blanket that you won’t bawl over if you happen to spill a glass of spiked raspberry lemonade in all the picnic induced excitement

B) SPF 30+ sunscreen to protect your flawless skin with

C) And a positive attitude because no matter how carefully you pack your basket or cooler, a couple grapes might get smooshed in the process

The fun doesn’t stop here. Get even more ideas for Picnic Mains, Snacks, and Sweets.

 

No Cook Recipes

Antipasto Zoodles
Antipasto Zoodles

 

Is cooking always necessary?

No, no it is not.

Especially when it’s hot hot hot out and the last thing you even want to think about is turning on that dreaded oven.

Or even the microwave.

So instead of relying solely on lemon water and cereal for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, whip up one or all of these refreshing no cook recipes.

 

Soup:

Wait, what? No one wants to down a bowl of piping hot liquid during the summer months.

So why don’t you give chilled soup a try.

Fresh Tomato Soup

Only 5 ingredients required? Yes please! You can certainly break the rules and dunk a perfectly golden brown and gooey grilled cheese in there. (We won’t tell.)

Veggie Gazpacho

Kind of like a Bloody Mary minus the alcohol. A splash of vodka definitely couldn’t hurt…

Chilled Avocado Soup

Slightly obsessed with avocados? Give avocado toast a break (just for one day) and drink the stuff instead. Chewing is overrated anyway.

Strawberry Melon Gazpacho

Even if you’re usually all gazpach-no, this fruity soup will certainly change your mind. Think refreshing summer smoothie that you can slurp down with a very large spoon.

 

Salad:

We’re not talking about your standard Caesar (which is delicious in it’s own standard way). Now’s the time to think outside that box of greens.

Raw Taco Salad

Skip the ground beef and grab some walnuts instead. This taco salad will give you an energy boost instead of the urge to take a 3.5 hour siesta.

Tuna & White Bean Salad

Pile it on a slice of hearty whole grain bread, stuff it into a jumbo wrap, or simply take a forkful straight to the mouth. Just don’t forget a breath mint.

Panzanella

Are you the type to save all the croutons for last, then savor and enjoy them one by one? Panzanella is basically a crouton salad with some veggies thrown in the mix. In other words, a carb lover’s dream.

 

Rolls & Sandwiches:

Fun to make, fun to eat, and fun to share. Well maybe not the sharing part.

Fresh Spring Rolls

A valid excuse to consume copious amounts of addictive peanut sauce. Not that you ever need an excuse.

Paleo California Rolls

Rolls without the rice! If you’re not about that Paleo lifestyle, you could certainly include rice in this equation.

Veggie Goddess Sandwich

Meat isn’t always necessary. Especially when you can slather on the hummus like there’s no tomorrow.

 

Pasta:

Uncooked crunchy ramen noodles may be tasty, but you can do better…

Raw Vegan Lasagna

If “raw” and “vegan” are foreign terms to you, all hope is not lost. Just remember, “lasagna” is in the title.

Antipasto Zoodles

Whoever came up with the grand idea to magically transform zucchini into noodles deserves an award. A major award.

 

Dessert:

For when Joe the ice cream man skips your neighborhood and you need a break from your good friends Ben & Jerry.

Mango Sorbet

When your dessert counts as a serving of fruit, you know you’re doing something right. Oh, and sorbet happens to be vegan and gluten-free.

Frozen Apricot Almond Dessert

Sometimes an ice cream cake is in order, but cake just isn’t your thing. This recipe will solve that dilemma.

Raw Banana Ice Cream

Technically this frozen treat isn’t ice cream at all, but it will still satisfy your sweet tooth when that midnight snacking hour hits.

 

The no cook inspo doesn’t end here. Take a peek at more chill recipes, including Avocado & Chicken Tortilla Wraps, Zesty Black Bean & Corn Salad, and Salmon Ceviche.

 

BigOven Food Fight – Pie: Nuts for Pecan vs. Pumpkin Pretty Please

Pie--11.20

 

After you’ve pondered the pie crust dilemma and have finally chosen to go with homemade or store-bought, it’s time to make yet another momentous decision.

What will the filling be?

If your sweet tooth controls your life and you crave sugar at all times of the day (and night) pecan pie is probably the most suitable choice for you. It is sweet, plus pleasantly crunchy and nutty. A satisfying dessert for sure. Especially if you smother it in whipped cream or ice cream… we’ll get to that later. Besides, a dessert involving vegetables certainly cannot be considered a real dessert.

But maybe the true meaning of Thanksgiving to you is “pumpkin pie”. If pumpkin pie was not consumed, then Thanksgiving never happened. Plus, anything and everything pumpkin must make its way inside your tummy this time of year. And when desserts include veggies, you can rationalize inhaling 3 servings at least. The choice is obvious.

Devour both?

Are you a fan of pecan or purely pumpkin?

 

 

See more Thanksgiving dessert recipes.

BigOven Food Fight – Potatoes: Purely Mashed vs. Roasted & Crispy

Potatoes--11.16

 

Thanksgiving wouldn’t be the same without potatoes.

Especially mashed potatoes. They’re so creamy, thanks to butter and… cream. And nothing is more enjoyable than forming the perfect well in the center of your mashers to hold all of that lovely, rich gravy.

Whoa, whoa. Let’s add a bit more texture to this whole potato situation. Baby food consistency is never ideal (unless you’re missing a majority of your chompers). What we’re really going for is crispy roasted potatoes. A drizzle of olive oil, big pinch of salt and maybe a sprinkling of rosemary is all that’s required. Let the potatoes really shine. Are you eating potatoes whipped with butter and cream, or butter and cream whipped with potatoes?

Hmm good question.

Will you be digging your spoon into a mound of fluffy mashed taters or taking a fork to some crispy spuds?

 

 

Get more potato recipes here.

 

BigOven Food Fight – Pie Crust: Homemade All the Way vs. Store-Bought Hits the Spot

Pie-Crust--11.15

 

Pie crust has to be the very best part of a pie. It’s buttery, flaky, tender and perfectly golden brown.

All you need is a few ingredients and the crust is underway. Just a bit of finagling (plus a lot of experience) and your pie will be ready for the oven.

But why is it crumbling? And why is it stuck to the rolling pin, parchment paper, your hands and your hair? Plus how did it become so gummy and tough? Fail.

Just quietly creep on over to the frozen aisle of the nearest grocery store and grab yourself a couple premade pie crusts. You are making the filling and baking the thing after all, so 66.667% homemade can reasonably translate to 100% homemade. And it might actually taste a lot better than if you went through with making your own crust from scratch.

Hmmm.

Will you be rolling out the dough or pulling out the dough (from a box) this Turkey Day?

 

 

Get pie recipes here.

BigOven Food Fight – The Menu: Stick to the Tried & True vs. Try Something New

Menu--11.9

 

Coming up with the Thanksgiving menu can either require no thought at all or a lot of brainstorming.

You can go the easy route and just do the exact same thing you did the year before. And the year before that, and the year before that… basically cook up the dishes that your great-grandmother used to back in the day. You know what they say, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

But maybe your taste buds are getting a wee bit tired of the same old gluey mashed potatoes drowned in the same old giblet gravy plopped right next to the same old questionable green bean casserole. Why not swap in a fresh kale salad topped with bright pomegranate seeds? Perfectly roasted parsnips could surely replace those sad mashed potatoes and no one would know the difference. Just be sure to keep that raspberry jello salad or your younger sister might start throwing punches over the modernized feast.

Decision, decisions.

Will you be sticking with tradition or switching things up?

 

 

Get Thanksgiving recipe inspiration here.