really good recipes

7 satisfying pasta salad recipes

July 28, 2014
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Sure–these amazing pasta salads can be served year-round, but they seem like the perfect side dish to enjoy with a main course from the grill (but some are even hearty enough to serve alone as your meal). They’re creamy, tasty, and if you manage to have any leftovers at all…they always taste better the next day!

pasta salad recipes

Try out a few of these scrumptious recipes from some fellow inventive bloggers…

When her dad requested Macaroni Salad for his retirement party, Emily of Is This Really My Life? made it her mission to find the perfect recipe. She adapted a classic from FamilyFavoriteRecipes and her research paid off~it was a huge hit!

Nicole from Prevention RD came up with the yummy nutrition-packed Pesto Tortellini Salad one night when she brainstormed. She used ingredients that she had on hand and whole wheat tortellini which added fiber to the recipe. The end result?–an amazingly delicious dinner!

pasta

If you want to try your hand at making Jessica’s recipe for her  delightful Roasted Vegetable Pasta Salad–make sure you pick up a bunch of asparagus on your next trip to the grocery store. For a full list of ingredients, head over to her blog…Sunny Side Up.

Looking for a new way to enjoy seafood? Try out a great recipe for Shrimp Pasta Salad on the Jennifer Cooks Blog. A combination of mayo and buttermilk make it the perfect choice for a light lunch.

“Summer in a bowl” is the phrase that Des uses to describe her recipe for Creamy Bacon Tomato and Avocado Pasta Salad. Her inspiration came from her all-time favorite sandwich~Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato and Avocado.  She shares the complete list of ingredients on her blog, Life’s Ambrosia.

Tonight, why not resist the urge to order pizza delivery and instead enjoy a big serving of some Pizza Pasta Salad?  We found this mouthwatering recipe on the Butter with a Side of Bread Blog. Click here to find out easy it is to prepare this savory meal in a bowl.

This is one of those that will make you say–”now why didn’t I think of that?”.  Cyndy from The Creative Exchange added pasta into the mix and came up with a unique version of Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad which is heartier than a traditional caesar, but still light enough to love after a long, hot summer day.

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7 sensational summer sips

July 7, 2014
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Feeling a bit parched lately? Try quenching your thirst with one of these delicious drinks…they have summer written all over them!

summer sips

Icy, fruity, slushy, and sparkling are just a few of the fitting ways to describe these liquid refreshments. And, although not required–I would absolutely recommend plopping in a cute paper umbrella to top off your tasty beverage.

Check out the easy recipe for the Instant Vacation Cocktail/Mocktail on the Kitchen Prep Blog.  One sip and you’ll feel like you’ve been whisked away to the islands.

This Aloha Milkshake is a coconut lovers dream come true.  Get all the details on the creamy,tropical cooler over on This Silly Girl’s Life.

Got a taste for tea? Now’s the perfect time to jazz up an old standard with some fresh flavors of the season. The Kitchen Treaty serves up a fantastic fusion of tea and fruit–Iced Raspberry Green Tea Limeade.

A Key Lime Pie Milkshake sounds like the perfect treat to enjoy on any hot summer afternoon. Becca from Crumbs and Chaos came up with this winning recipe and enjoyed every minute of her trials and taste testing (it’s a tough job, but someone’s gotta do it!).

You only need three ingredients to make Peach Simple Syrup, and once you’re finished–this delightful concoction can be used to sweeten up any beverage of your choice.  Nicole from The Marvelous Misadventures of a Foodie suggests a tall, glass of  Peach Iced Tea (sweeten to taste by the glass or pitcher).

“Make mine a margarita”, if you crave the tangy taste of this summer staple–make sure you try out the Watermelon Margarita that we found on Cook Like A Champion. Courtney came up with her recipe after enjoying some delicious fresh watermelon sprinkled with salt.

Simply follow the directions on Rebecca’s Living Better Together Blog and she will show you how easy it is turn a carton of store-bought lemonade into delicious Sparkling Mango Lemonade. It’s fruity,refreshing and fizzy!

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perfectly portable food for a summer picnic

July 1, 2014
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Remember last winter? For some of us, it’s kind of hard to forget…subzero temps and lots of snow. But now, the great outdoors is calling my name and I’m making it a point to soak up every last drop of this beautiful summer. Of course, a picnic is on the agenda–and for a great picnic you need the right food. Things that are easy to whip up and travel well.

picnic foods

Here are a few choice recipes that you might want to include in your picnic basket, and don’t forget the sunscreen!

This Honey Chipotle Barbecue Chicken Salad Sandwich is super easy to put together (you use store bought roasted chicken!). Head over to Mommyhood’s Diary to find the full list of ingredients.

crunchy asian slaw from how i pinch a penny-1

Once you prepare this delicious Crunchy Asian Slaw recipe that we found on How I Pinch A Penny–just pack it up in a jar and you’re good to go! Chopsticks are optional :)

Prefer pasta as your side dish? Then by all means, try out the Creamy Italian Herb Pasta Salad from the Sweet Phi Blog. You can even make a more nutritious version of this by substituting in veggie or whole wheat pasta.

Here’s a classic lunch standby transformed into the perfect picnic item~Mini BLT Sliders. Becky from The Cookie Rookie says these really hit the spot!

Feeding a few people at your picnic? You’ll definitely want to have a look at the Brick Compressed Sandwich over on Simply So Good. It’s one big sandwich layered with deliciousness and compressed with bricks on top so that all the yummy flavors blend (for a few hours or overnight). Then all you have to do is slice it up and wrap individually.

Try this new twist on the traditional turkey sandwich…Turkey Club Tortilla Pinwheels. Just looking at the recipe on Baking With Blondie you can see that they are bursting with flavor…turkey, bacon,cheese and a secret spicy mayo.

I believe that lemon is one of the official flavors of summertime, so it only seems right to include a sweet finish to a picnic with these Lemon Chewies. You can find out how to make this vegan cookie recipe over on Endlessly Inspired.

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7 sweet strawberry recipes to tempt your tastebuds

June 24, 2014
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It’s time to take advantage of one of the great gifts of the season, strawberries! Since I was a kid, these juicy berries have always been my favorite fruit–so I am always on the lookout for a new way to enjoy them.strawberry recipes

Here’s a sampling of some of the delicious fare I came across in my search…

This Baby Kale and Strawberry Salad is just right for a light lunch or dinner.  You’ll find the complete list of ingredients for this easy-to-make salad over on the Eating Bird Food Blog.

jam

While I’ve never attempted in the past to make any type of homemade jam, Heather from French Press may have sold me on the idea with her recipe for 10 Minute Strawberry Jam.  According to her it’s kid approved and the best part yet, it’s made in the microwave!

Now you know, we can’t have a strawberry recipe post without some kind of pie…this Strawberries and Cream Pie is a delicious alternative to the traditional. If you love chocolate-covered strawberries, this one is for you (there’s an Oreo cookie crust and chocolate drizzled on top). Head to the Butter With A Side Of Bread to get the full recipe.

Did someone say Cannoli Strawberries?  Yes, and I’ve died and gone to heaven! Lori  reveals her recipe for these scrumptious treats over on the blog, Foxes Love Lemons.

Looking for a new strawberry cake recipe? Erin baked this Strawberry Almond Skillet Cake for her wedding anniversary celebration (her original wedding cake was also strawberry).  She recommends enjoying it with a cup of coffee or big scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Believe it or not, you can make this impressive Triple Berry Tart with Coconut Cream in 30 minutes. Heather from Sunday Morning Banana Pancakes explains how to prepare this dessert using store bought puff pastry–it’s a real life-saver and will save you lots of time and clean-up in the kitchen :)

Cool off on a summer night with the sweet taste of Strawberry Margarita Sorbet. This frozen dessert comes complete with a little kick of tequila and lime. Ready to break out the ice cream maker?  Click here to find the recipe on Erica’s Sweet Tooth Blog.

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5 flavorful dry rub recipes to spice up your summer grilling

June 4, 2014
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Ready to try adding a little zing to your grilled meats? Marinades have always been in my rotation as a way of adding seasoning, but these dry rubs look like something that I need to try too!

dry rub recipes

The unique flavor combinations look so tasty…

Coffee Dry Rub for Pork? Yes–this one’s a real winner according to Lorraine on Cookin for the Seven Dwarfs. It adds a rich flavor to the meat and also smells delicious while cooking.

Really loving the name of this one, Soul Dust. We found this amazing spice blend on the Kayotic Kitchen Blog. It’s the perfect balance of salty and sweet!

Try Stone Gable’s Spicy Magic BBQ Rub the next time you decide to grill up a rack of ribs. Yvonne recommends you double or triple the recipe so you have plenty for the next time you cook out.

The Latin Spice Steak Rub recipe that we found on A Full Measure of Happiness has an ingredient that you may find unusual–cinnamon. I can’t wait to trying this unique flavor fusion the next time I grill steaks.

Head over to Wannabite and check out this mouthwatering Jamaican Jerk Rub Chicken Recipe.  This one is also recommended for shrimp or tilapia–it provides just the right lingering “tingle on the tongue”.

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craving quesadillas?

May 27, 2014
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If you’re fan of this easy cheesy meal, you’ll love the rainbow of ways you can make delicious quesadillas your whole family will love in this great recipe book.

quesadilla recipes bookAfter flipping through the many pages of yumminess, I selected two different recipes to try out.

asparagus quesadilla recipe

With asparagus season in full force, the Spring Fling caught my eye.  I ended up making it more a wrap for presentation sake but it will taste delicious either way!

quesadilla recipe

I ended up cooking the entire quesadilla wrap using the broiler setting on my oven.  Just be careful though as it doesn’t take long at all!

quesadilla recipe

In a matter of minutes, you’ll have a tasty vegetarian dinner!

chicken Caesar quesadilla

Chicken Caesar is always a popular choice for most folks so why not turn it into a quesadilla?

chicken Caesar quesadillas

I really enjoyed the crunch the celery added to this classic combo.

chicken caesar quesadilla

I could have easily made a dozen more recipes with lots of international inspired options, desserts and some great sauce recipes to serve with them too.  All quick and easy to whip together for  a quick light meal.

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7 sensational burger sauces to kick off grilling season

May 21, 2014
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The unofficial start of summer is this weekend, so what better time to roll out the grill and try a new topping on your burger?

burger sauce recipes

These tasty sauce recipes are guaranteed to send your tastebuds into overdrive…

The Avocado Lime Spread that we found on My Frugal Adventures is truly a multi-tasker. This mouth-watering spread can be enjoyed on burgers, tacos, or sandwiches!

This Roasted Red Pepper Aioli Sauce from The Kitchen McCabe would pair perfectly with either a black bean or ground beef burger–Kayley even explains how to roast your own peppers for the sauce.

Mini burgers on the menu? Try out the recipe for Grilled Cilantro Sliders with Teriyaki Sauce and Pineapple courtesy of Nancy from Coupon Clipping Cook.

Want in on a little secret? Head over to Little Miss Momma to get the scoop on how to make the best burger ever (along with instructions on how to whip up her secret sauce).

Some like it hot~if you are one of those “some”, then find out how to make a tasty Sriracha Sauce for your burger on the Fabtastic Eats Blog.

burger

If you love the taste of onions and chives, you need to try out the French Onion Burgers with Onion Au Jus that we found on The Curvy Carrot. The Horseradish-Chive Burger Sauce adds just the right finishing touch to this delicious dish.

Comeback Sauce can only mean one thing…that you’ll be coming back for more. This amazing sauce recipe works great on burgers can be found on the Syrup & Biscuits Blog–Jackie says it’s good on everything except cheerios!

burger parties

Craving for more?  Take a stroll through this sensational recipe book that will make you salivate!

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8 extraordinary frostings to top your next cake

May 13, 2014
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Do you love the smooth sweet taste of classic vanilla buttercream or are you ready to take the plunge and savor a new flavor?

frosting recipes

Take a look below for the best frosting recipes that we stumbled upon in our quest to find the most decadent way to finish off your homemade desserts…

Check out this delectable recipe for Vanilla Bean Buttercream Frosting that we found on the Dieter’s Downfall Blog. Karyn’s tagline for her blog is “yeah, i’d cheat on my diet for that”–and we agree!

Sweet and salty~it’s the best of both worlds! Christina from The Sweet Lavender Bake Shoppe shares her recipe for Salted Caramel Frosting on her blog here. She says it tastes great on chocolate or vanilla cupcakes…or right out of the spoon!

Tight on time and want to cut down on making a mess in the kitchen? Rose Bakes came up with a sneaky but clever way to turn her basic buttercream into sensational strawberry frosting. Click here to get all the details.

Head here to find the recipe for a Decadent Dark Chocolate Buttercream Frosting courtesy of Amy from She Wears Many Hats. She believes the darker the better and promises this will take your cake to the next level.

You can make this Espresso Frosting at home even if you don’t have an espresso maker (just pick a shot up from your local coffee house). Angela from the Spinach Tiger insists that the little extra effort will be worth the delicious end result.

Got some fresh blueberries hanging out in your kitchen? You only need 3 more ingredient to whip up the Blueberry Whipped Cream Frosting that pairs perfectly with lemon cupcakes.  We found this fruity favorite on the Edible Perspective Blog.

Take a good look at the picture above, that is what your beaters will look like once you’ve created the perfect Seafoam Frosting. This one is outstanding for creating perfect peaks and fancy swirls on your baked goods.  Erika from Life’s Too Short to Skip Desserts says it’s a great alternative if you prefer a less sugary buttercream.

Gina from Mom’s Lifeboat says you just can’t go wrong with her recipe for Peanut Butter Frosting. Anyone else imagining  the tasty possibility of using it on a jelly-filled cupcake?

frostings recipe bookStill can’t get enough of these fluffy clouds of sweetness?  Take a gander at this beautiful recipe book.

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7 wonderful ways to make a crepe

May 5, 2014
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Most of us have made pancakes at home, but have you ever attempted crepes? The crepe is the first cousin of pancakes with the big difference being the lack of a leavening ingredient (pancake batter rises and crepes are flat and thin).

crepe recipes

The great thing about crepes is that you can make them in endless varieties by changing up what you fill them with. In the mood for something sweet? Or craving a savory taste?–just remember with these, practice makes perfect!

Take advantages of the fresh fruits in season and whip up some Strawberry Banana Crepes. Julie from Lovely Little Kitchen thinks these are absolutely perfect for a lazy Saturday morning.

crepe

Going gluten-free? Here’s one for you to try…Honey & Peach Gluten-Free Crepes. Interesting fact from The Adventures of MJ and Hungryman…the addition of honey masks the bitter taste gluten-free flour in a recipe.

Check out these mouthwatering Ham and Gruyere Crepes from Eat.Drink.Love. We think they’ll turn your morning into a real gourmet experience.

These Nutella Crepes make it easy to hop on board one of the latest food crazes around. Lisa of Crazy Adventures in Parenting adds that kids love these!

Natasha’s Kitchen brings us a delicious recipe for Russian Crepes known as Nalesniki. They’re filled with cream cheese and raisins and you’ll even find a video tutorial for making these on her blog.

Here’s one for the blueberry fans–Blueberry and Mascarpone Crepes intertwine the smooth flavor of Mascarpone with zesty flavor of blueberry compote. Find out how the make these on the Two Tarts Blog.

Wake up with a splash of citrus–try out the Orange Crepes recipe that we found on Liv Life. These droolworthy crepes are topped with an orange syrup that includes orange zest and freshly squeezed orange juice.

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melt in your mouth chocolate chip cookie recipes

April 30, 2014
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Chocolate chip cookies…I think it’s safe to say, there’s a real dividing line when it comes to these tasty treats. You have your fans that love them chewy and gooey while some prefer their cookies a little  more cake-like or crispy (and we can’t forget the die hard chocolate chip cookie dough enthusiasts out there!).

chocolate chip cookie recipes

Whatever your preference, we’ve found a recipe that will suit your fancy. Some of these incorporate a few surprise ingredients into this classic –take a break and  find a new favorite amongst these scrumptious recipes.

Let’s start with the basics…we found the recipe for The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie courtesy of Alicia on her blog, The Baker Upstairs. Her secret?–the way these cookies are shaped and placed on the cookie sheet.

Oh my goodness–if this doesn’t get your mouth watering, I don’t know what will. Check out the recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Pizza over on Life, Love & Sugar. Don’t worry about the raw cookie dough…this one is eggless and completely safe to eat.

Create your own double delight when you turn these cookies into Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwiches.  These are filled with marshmallow creme, but you can head over to the Thyme of Taste Blog to see read about another variation on this one.

Rebecca from Living Better Together recommends grabbing a gallon of milk to enjoy with her Double Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies. These are slightly crispy on the outside and gooey on the inside. She describes them as being almost brownie-like.

This recipe for Carmelita Dream Bars definitely takes the basic cookie bar to the next level.  Renee from Two In The Kitchen shows you how to kick these up with the addition of caramels, oatmeal and a decadent drizzle on top.

Mint and chocolate–they’re the perfect partners in the world of baking. So naturally, these Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies that we found on Life In The Lofthouse need to be on your list to try if you’re a fan of this classic combination.

Peabody from Culinary Concoctions by Peabody spills her secret for her Crispy Chocolate Chip Cookies–pulverized Captain Crunch cereal! Her picture really shows just how light and airy the cookies turn out.

Can’t decide between chocolate chip cookies and oreos? Now you don’t have to…just head on over to the Picky Palate and learn how to make these Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies. Talk about the best of both worlds :)

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April McCrumb

I'm April McCrumb ~ a creative gal from Michigan that loves to share clever gift ideas, simple recipes, my favorite tunes & all things crafty.  Thanks for stopping by my whimsical world. I hope you enjoy your visit.

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