Tag Archives: recipe

Healthy Summer Foods + Recipe {New Food Friday}


summer food ideasWhen the weather’s sweltering hot and your stomach’s grumbling, the last thing you probably want to do is preheat your oven to 350° or stand over a hot stove. Before you spend all summer glued to the super market freezer aisle or holed up in your local ice cream store, consider the following summer dinner ideas. They’ll fill you up and cool you down at the same time, but are much better for you than an ice cream dinner!


There’s nothing better than biting into a juicy slice of fresh watermelon on a hot summer day, and beyond being absolutely delicious, it’s the perfect way to cool off. Watermelon has a high water content, allowing you to hydrate yourself while enjoying something sweet.

Fruit Smoothies

It’s completely fine to give into your ice cream craving every so often, but eating a waffle cone every night isn’t going to do great things for your health—or waistline! For a healthier, refreshing alternative, make yourself a fruit smoothie. Yogurt and fruit provide great nutritional benefits and will still satisfy your sweet tooth.

Chilled Soups

Soup may sound like a cold-weather food, but chilled soups are a nice way to cool yourself off on a hot day. Gazpacho is one of the more popular chilled soup recipes, but you can make a chilled soup from everything from cucumbers and avocados to fruits like blueberries.


If you need a break from burgers and other hot grilled sandwiches, wraps are the way to go. Spread a spinach or whole wheat tortilla with creamy cheese, salsa and sliced deli meat for a light but satisfying lunch or dinner. Pack your wrap with water-heavy veggies like cucumbers for even more refreshment.

Pasta Salad

Easy pasta salad recipes are some of the best to have on hand during the summer; they’re simple to throw together in a few minutes, can include tons of vegetables and are a hearty way to cool off. Stay away from mayonnaise or sour cream bases and choose olive oil, pesto or a light salad dressing if you’re trying to stay healthier.


Try this yummy antipasto pasta salad from ReadySetEat the next time you need a quick summer meal. Made with Italian dressing and fresh veggies, it’s a delicious, lighter way to cool down this summer.

Antipasto Pasta Salad

Total Time: 25 min

Serves: 6

  • 8 oz. dry bow-tie pasta, uncooked
  • 1 14.5 oz. can Hunt’s® Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes with Garlic, drained
  • ¼ cup fat free Italian dressing
  • 2 cups small fresh cauliflower florets
  • ½ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 30 slices pepperoni, cut into quarters (about ½ cup)
  • ¾ cup cubed part-skim mozzarella cheese

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse under cold water until cool. Meanwhile, stir together drained tomatoes and dressing in a large bowl. Add pasta and all remaining ingredients; toss to combine. Serve immediately or refrigerate until cold.


Author Bio: This is a guest post by Meredith K. on behalf of ReadySetEat.  For easy grilling recipes and more, visit www.readyseteat.com.

Summer Slaw Recipe {New Food Friday} #Hormel


summer recipe that is simple to makeThis post is part of the Hormel Extended Family Blogger Program

Summer is coming up which means lots of picnics and family outings. Here is a a nice summer slaw recipe  you can make and really make it anything you want. Enjoy

Summer Slaw Recipe


1/2 cup salad dressing. (ranch or blue cheese would be good)
1/2 cup mayonnaise
salt and pepper to taste
1 (16 ounce) bag coleslaw mix
1 (2.5 ounce) package cooked Hormel real bacon
1 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
(You can really add any other summer veggies)
Combine mayonnaise, salad dressing, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Stir in the coleslaw mix and bacon. Add the tomatoes, and toss gently. Cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight before serving.
Do you have a favorite recipe you take to family outings and picnic’s? I would love to feature you for a New Food Friday post.

Sloppy Joes {New Food Friday} Rainy Day Alternative


sloppyjoesWell this Memorial Day calls for rain so we have to bring the celebration in the house. I made this sloppy joe recipe recently for a potluck at work and it was a huge hit. So since we won’t be grilling I am planning on making it again. Sloppy Joes can be made a ton of different way but I am no cook so it has to be simple and it can’t get any easier than this! Enjoy!

Sloppy Joes

1 pound lean ground beef (could use ground turkey)
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon prepared yellow mustard
3/4 cup ketchup
3 teaspoons brown sugar
salt to taste
ground black pepper to taste
**I added worcestershire sauce for extra flavor***

Brown hamburger, onion, and pepper. Drain when browned.  Add the remaining ingredients, heat and serve.

Quick Healthy Breakfast: Fruit Compote {New Food Friday}


fruitWell spring is here and it’s planting time. I plan on having some yummy fruits again this year in my garden. My watermelon last year was so good.  Here is a recipe  that will go with any fruit you want and make an excellent quick healthy breakfast. I love blackberries and kiwi which both would go well with this dish. Enjoy!

Fruit Compote

Weight Watcher Points: 2

Serves: 4


1 Tbsp honey
2 tsp crystallized ginger
2 tsp lemon juice canned or bottled
2 cup(s) (diced) cantaloupe
1/2 cup(s) (raw) strawberries
1/2 cup(s) fresh blueberries
1 serving(s) 1 Fresh Mint Sprig, chopped
1/2 cup apple juice, unsweetened


  • Mix- Apple juice, honey, ginger and lemon juice in small saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat until boiling. Boil for 2 minutes to slightly reduce mixture. Remove from heat; cool completely. (Can place in freezer for a few minutes to speed up cooling.)
  • Add cantaloupe, strawberries, blueberries and mint in medium bowl. Spoon into serving dishes; drizzle with juice mixture.

Did you make this recipe? If so please let me know how you liked it or if you changed anything.

Do you have a quick healthy breakfast idea to share?

Please contact me to get any of your recipes published.

Peanut Chicken {New Food Friday}


chickenI love peanut chicken and sometimes it’s hard to find a good semi-healthy recipe. Gotta give props to Allrecipes.com for this delicious recipe.  There is this one Chinese buffet in town that has the best peanut chicken and that is all I eat when I go there (besides the crab ragoons of course). I am hoping this recipe comes close and is a healthier version. Enjoy

Grilled Peanut Chicken

  • 2 tablespoons Skippy All Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1/3 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 dash ground cayenne pepper
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast (6oz each)
  • Check out the complete recipe on Allrecipe.com
  • Serving size is 4

Did you try this recipe? If so please let me know how you like it or if you changed anything about it. If you send me a picture of your dish I will add it to post.

If you are on Weight Watchers, per my recipe builder this would be 6 points. That is based on 4- 6oz chicken breasts. The only items that contain points are the chicken and peanut butter, the rest are free.
This post was sponsored by Hormel as part of the Hormel Extended Blogger Family.

Healthier Spring Snacking {New Food Friday}


currydipSpringtime, with its warm temperatures, fresh seasonal produce and the opportunity to eat outside again, is the perfect time to kick your family’s eating habits up a notch. Fresh air and sunshine seem to put most people in the mood for fresher, lighter meals rather than heavy ones, making fruits and vegetables the main focus of many spring dishes.

The abundance of seasonal produce is also a great opportunity for parents to introduce healthier eating habits to their children. If you’re looking for fresh snack ideas this spring, try out some of the following ideas—they’re easy to make, budget-friendly and hold definite kid appeal:

 Apricots and Cottage Cheese

Apricots are in season during the spring, so take advantage of this yummy fruit! An easy snack that’s full of nutrients and calcium is apricots stuffed with cottage cheese. Halve your apricots, spoon in some cheese and drizzle with honey or sprinkle with nuts for a little something extra.

Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Baked sweet potato fries are a healthier alternative to the French fries, gloppy potato salad and potato chips that are sure to start popping up at cookouts this spring. Make your own or look for premade ones in the freezer section of your grocery store. Eat them alongside a sandwich or dip them in yogurt or ketchup for a yummy snack. You can bake other veggies too: roasted carrots, baked onion rings and baked dried strawberries also make great snacks.

Yogurt Dip

Speaking of yogurt dip, it’s one of the easiest and healthiest spring snacks out there. Mix yogurt with curry powder, honey or maple syrup for a healthier dip option this spring. You can choose whatever dippers you like; fruit, sweet potato fries and cinnamon pita chips all taste great dipped in something a little sweeter!


Smoothies are the perfect spring snack because not only do they cool you down on a hot day, but they’re good for you too. Use yogurt, fruit and your favorite juices to experiment with various smoothie combinations. To add some additional nutrients, blend some spinach in with the fruit—kids won’t even notice.

Whole Grain Pitas

Keep whole grain pitas around your house this spring; you can use them for dozens of delicious, healthy snack ideas. Melt some cheese between them for a simple quesadilla, bake them into homemade pita chips or spread on marinara or BBQ sauce and sprinkle a little mozzarella on top for a healthier take on pizza.

Try this easy curried yogurt dip for a simple spring snack perfect for dipping with fruit, pita chips, sweet potato fries or any other snack you can think of. Enjoy!


Curried Yogurt Dip


  • 3/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp hot pepper sauce

Blend all ingredients together. Chill and serve. Optional: Drain the yogurt in a cheese cloth for a thicker, richer dip.


Author Bio: This is a guest post by Meredith K. on behalf of Alexia. For more easy dip recipes and frozen appetizers to dip with, visit www.alexiafoods.com.  

Taste of Africa Recipe {New Food Friday}


sandycookingI really hope you caught my interview with Sandy Salle from Hills of Africa about this awesome cookbook, Taste of Africa. If didn’t please check it out. As promised here is a recipe that Sandy has shared with us and information on how you can purchase this book for yourself. Enjoy!


Is there a recipe you can share with us either from the cookbook or maybe one that didn’t make the cookbook?

Absolutely! I’d first like to point out that this recipe book is perfect for everyone—it features a variety of vegetarian, meat, dessert, spicy and non-spicy, and appetizer dishes.

One of my favorite dishes from the book is a Lamb & Butternut Squash Tagine recipe from Camp Kalahari, which I’ve spotlighted below:

SIDE NOTE: I make the lamb and butternut tagine at home in a potjie—a three-legged cast iron pot—over an open fire for about three hours. It’s the perfect dish to cook for a large group of friends and the lamb, butternut, and sweet apricot flavors pair perfectly!

Lamb & Butternut Squash Tagine:

Serves 6-8

3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 pound cubed lamb shoulder
1 sliced onion
2 crushed garlic cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon chili flakes
2 cups lamb stock
14 ounce can of chopped tomatoes
1 extra large butternut squash, peeled & cubed
1 handful of chopped apricots
A pinch of salt & pepper


1. Heat the oil in a tagine or casserole pan
2. Fry the lamb in batches for 3 – 4 min. or until brown
3. Fry the onion in the tagine until brown
4. Add the garlic & cook for an additional 3 – 4 min.
5. Return the cooked lamb cubes to the tagine & add the stock, dried apricots, & chopped tomatoes
6. Season with salt & pepper & bring mixture to a boil
Reduce heat, cover, & simmer for 45 min. until lamb is tender & sauce has thickened
7. Add the butternut squash & cook for 15 min.

To Serve
2 tablespoons fresh, chopped parsley
2 tablespoons fresh, chopped mint
1 handful of flaked almonds
14 ounces couscous cooked
6 tablespoons Greek-style yogurt
Finally question! How can we go about purchasing the Taste of Africa Cookbook?

You can purchase the book online at http://atasteofafrica.hillsofafrica.com/

You can also purchase the book over the phone with us by calling our office at 800.940.9344

We are so unbelievably proud of this book and all of the amazing restaurants and kitchens that are featured in it! I hand selected each of the recipes to ensure that the book would not only be well-rounded in its selection, but also so that it would be a one-of-a-kind cookbook—and it is! The book even contains recipes that were given to me by my mum, Annabelle, whom I love with all my heart; my best friend and sister, Pam; my beautiful sister-in-law, Edz; and my very generous mother-in-law, Lynn. I hope you enjoy these recipes as much as we all do. Family is the heart and soul of a meal, after all.

St. Patrick’s Day Recipe: Glazed Corned Beef #NewFoodFriday


cornedbeefSt. Patrick’s Day is approaching so corn beef and hash meals will be popping up all over the place. I am not one for cooked cabbage or corn beef but here is a recipe that I think might just be good.

Glazed Corned Beef with Lentils

2 quarts water
4 pounds corned beef brisket (for a quick and easy meal use Hormel fully cooked Corned Beef)
1 large onion
1 large carrot
1 stalk celery
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon pickling spice
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
3 tablespoons Dijon-style prepared
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup red chile sauce (optional)
2 cups dry lentils (optional)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
Full directions can be found on Allrecipes.com
Do you have a favorite Irish recipe you make every year? Did you try this one? Please let me know your thoughts and comments.

This post was part of the Hormel Blogger Family program

Valentine’s Day Dessert {New Food Friday}


vday1This is such a cute pie. I might use strawberries instead of cherries but it even looks too pretty to eat. Do you have a favorite Valentine’s Day dessert?

Heart Shaped Cherry Pie

1 (18 ounce) package refrigerated sugar
cookie dough
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 (21 ounce) can cherry pie filling
1 (8 ounce) container frozen whipped
topping, thawed
For directions check out the full recipe at Allrecipes.com
If you try this recipe please let me know. If you send me a picture I will add it to the post.

Pumpkin Bread {New Food Friday}


Thanksgiving is coming up so for this new food Friday I thought we would give a receipe that involves pumpkin. Traditionally pumpkin pie is the dessert of choice but I can't stand it. Mostly because the consistancy of the pumpkin but I do love pumpkin bars or pumpkin bread.  Thanks to Allrecipe here is some pumpkin bread to take to that Thanksgiving Dinner.

Pumpkin Bread


For the Pumpkin Bread:
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
4 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup butter, melted
2/3 cup water
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin spice
1 cup walnuts (optional)

For the Spiced Glaze:
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 pinch ground ginger
1 pinch ground cloves




Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two 9×5 inch loaf pans.
In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, butter, water, sugars and vanilla until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, pumpkin spice and walnuts. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.
Bake in preheated oven 45-50 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
While the pumpkin bread is cooling, combine all of the ingredients for the spiced glaze. Drizzle over bread and allow the icing to dry before serving (about an hour).
Keep pumpkin bread tightly wrapped in plastic wrap to retain freshness.

***For added sweetness mix up some cream cheese frosting and drizzle on top***