It seems like ages ago, but before Christmas, I went to a Holiday Theme Pinterest Party. Being a total pinning addict, this was such a fun party! Everyone made something to share and the recipes had to come from one of your pin boards.
I asked for help from my readers about their favorite party food pins. My friend, Maddie, gave me a great recipe from one of her pin boards. She said it’s always a huge hit anytime she’s made it. It’s super easy, no cooking required and it’s transportable.
I did make a couple changes to the recipe. I used reduced fat feta cheese (you can’t taste the difference!), replaced dried herbs with fresh oregano, parsley & basil and topped the dip with fresh lemon juice.
The dip was a huge hit! It was almost like a Greek style bruschetta since we ate it with bread. It’s definitely something I’ll be making again!!
Feta Dip with Fresh Herbs & Lemon
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1lb Reduced fat feta cheese (buy it in a block, not crumbles)
- 3 -4 Roma tomatoes, diced
- 10 Green onions, chopped
- 2 tbsp Parsley, chopped
- 1 tbsp Oregano, chopped
- 1 tbsp Basil, chopped
- Red pepper flakes (optional)
- Salt & Pepper, to taste
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 baguette, sliced
- In a large platter, pour olive oil. (it should cover the bottom of the platter.)
- Crumble feta cheese over platter. Add tomatoes, green onions and herbs. Mix everything together.
- Taste. Add red pepper flakes, salt & pepper.
- Top dip with lemon juice.
- Serve with bread. I bought a french bread baguette from the bakery section at my local grocery store and that was perfect with this dip!
Inspired by Clover Lane
I spent the weekend at my in law’s home in Fort Wayne, Indiana. We woke up early (thank you time change!) on Sunday to get back in time to watch football. About 20 minutes into the drive, I asked my husband, “What should we eat for lunch & dinner?” My husband replied, “Meghan, it’s 8:15 in the morning. I think we’ve got some time to figure it out.” He was kind of right…and I had a 3 hour drive in front of me to daydream about all of our options.
First hour into our car drive, my husband has started inviting people over to our house to watch the games. I go into pure panic mode– You mean I have to plan our game day food for a group of people, go to the grocery store, unpack our car, clean the house and make food all by noon??!! Just as my foot stepped down a little further on the accelerator, I remembered I have an easy, go to dip everyone always loves. 3 ingredient chili cheese dip.
I’ve been making this little dip for almost 10 years. It’s been referred to as Crack Dip — it’s incredibly addicting. Consider this a warning, don’t even try to think you can get away with just a couple bites. One time when I was living alone, I made this dip just for myself with intentions of eating the leftovers into the week… Too bad I didn’t have any leftovers. I ate the whole thing All.By.Myself. I probably shouldn’t be sharing that info, but seriously, this Chili Cheese Dip is just delicious.
So I’m sure all of you understand how tasty this dip can be. Another great thing — It’s just 3 ingredients. Cream Cheese, Chili and Shredded Cheese. That’s all you need! (And I even “cheat” by buying canned chili.)
Knowing I had this dip in my back pocket saved my day…and decreased the probability of me getting a speeding ticket.
3 Ingredient Chili Cheese Dip, serves 4-6 people
- 1 package of cream cheese, softened
- 1 can 15 oz chili
- 1 cup shredded cheese, I like to buy the Mexican or Taco Blend
- Tortilla Chips
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread cream cheese to cover the bottom of a small casserole dish. Pour chili on top, spread evenly. Cover chili with shredded cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Let it cool for 5 minutes before eating.
Eating chili in May isn’t something I usually do. Chicago has been hit with rainy and gloomy weather the past few days. While the rain came down on Sunday afternoon, I was curled up on the couch enjoying this amazing chili.
It’s smokey. It’s cheesy. It’s crunchy. It’s like a nacho chili bowl.
I’m not going to go into great detail about this chili. We all know what chili tastes like… but there are two elements in this chili which make it a stand out. Pureed chipotle chilis and blue cheese. Never thought blue cheese would end up in my chili, but in this recipe it totally worked.
And like most chilis, it tastes even better the longer it sits. You’ll enjoy the leftovers.
Smoky Buffalo Style Chicken Chili, serves 4-6
- 2 tablespoons EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
- 2 pounds ground chicken
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 3 – 4 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped or grated
- Salt and pepper
- 1 small can chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
- 1 15 ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 cups chicken stock
- A couple of handfuls thin blue-corn tortilla chips
- 1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
- 3/4 cup blue cheese crumbles
- Pickled jalapeno chile pepper rings for garnish
- Heat the EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the meat and cook to brown, stirring to crumble. Add the carrots, celery, onion and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, 10 minutes or so.
- Place the chipotles and adobo sauce in a food processor or blender and puree. Spoon 2 to 4 rounded tablespoons into a small bowl and combine with the tomato sauce to make a chipotle-infused tomato sauce.
- When the vegetables are tender, stir in the chile-tomato sauce and chicken stock. Simmer for a few minutes to thicken and combine the flavors.
- Meanwhile, switch on the broiler and position a rack in the center of the oven. Arrange 4 bowls on a baking sheet and fill with the buffalo chili. Top with an even layer of the tortilla chips, cheeses and jalapeno rings. Broil for a couple of minutes to brown the cheese and crisp the chips.
Hummus is a product I always have in my fridge. It’s pretty convenient since all stores carry it and they have a variety of flavors. After making my own hummus, I doubt I’ll ever buy it at the store again. This is a cheap & easy recipe — Paying $3-5 for an 8 ounce container of hummus is just silly. If you’re a hummus lover, please stop the insanity with me and just make your own!
I decided to make Roasted Red Pepper & Basil Hummus. I had both of the main ingredients on hand, but really, you can make any kind of hummus you want. The main ingredients you need to make hummus are chickpeas, tahini & olive oil. Tahini is a sesame paste and it can be tricky to find. The only store by me that carried it was Whole Foods. Tahini can be stored in your fridge for 6 months. If you’re like me and forget when you buy things, be sure to write the date on the container so you know how long you can use it. (I also do that with cheese!)
This recipe is so easy to make. Throw all of the ingredients in the blender and blend. That’s it.
Then you have this.
Roasted red pepper & basil go so great together. This hummus so thick & creamy. But the best part about it is how fresh it tastes! That’s the reason why I’ll never buy hummus in the store again. A store bought brand can’t compete!
How do you like to eat hummus? It really is a versatile food but I love it as a healthy dip. Veggies are great with hummus but sometimes I want some carbs. Instead of having calorie loaded chips & crackers, make your own baked tortilla chips. All you need are tortillas cut into triangles, cooking spray and your favorite spices. I really like cumin & a little salt. They bake for 10 minutes and then you have your own baked tortilla chips. The chips are super crispy! This is a great way to use up tortillas before they get too stale.
This recipe makes 3 cups and will last 7-10 days in your fridge. I hope after making your own hummus, you’ll never go back to the store bought stuff!
Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
- 1 can (15 oz.) chickpeas/garbanzo beans, rinsed & drained
- 12 oz. jar of roasted red peppers, drained
- 2 tbs olive oil
- Garlic, 2 cloves
- 1/3 cup tahini
- 1 lemon, juiced
- Basil, 8 leaves
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
All ingredients go into the blender. Blend until smooth. Refrigerate for 3 hours before it’s served.
Baked Tortilla Chips
- Cooking spray
- Your favorite spices (I used cumin)
Turn oven onto 350 degrees. Cut tortillas in half, and then each half into thirds. You should have a triangle shaped chip. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray. Place tortillas on the baking sheet and spray with cooking spray. Season chips with salt & the spice you selected. Bake for 10 minutes.
Of course you do, who doesn’t…. but I’m talking about flavors. Curry & Mango Chutney to be exact. If you like the combo of a slow burn with some sweetness, then you should make these wings. ASAP.
Make them tomorrow for your Superbowl Party. You know someone will bring the same old buffalo wings. Why don’t you be the star of the show who brings the flavor no one has had before.
Besides these wings being absolutely delicious, they’re baked. No deep-frying needed yet they still get perfectly crispy. Jack up your oven to 500 degrees and you’ll get a chicken wing that has the crunch of being fried, minus the calories. I love that.
The dry rub on the chicken is the base of the heat. The sauce provides the hint of sweet. You can eat these wings alone or add a side of Ranch dressing for dipping.
Drumsticks will take longer to cook than the wings. Drumsticks = 40 minutes. Wings = 25-30 minutes.
We all know Superbowl Parties are all about the food. Make these wings and you’ll be the hero, not some Hot Quarterback.
Mango – Curry Hot Wings
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons hot Madras curry powder
- 2 pounds chicken wings and drumsticks
- 5 tablespoons red hot sauce, preferably Frank’s Red Hot
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 4 tablespoons Major Grey Chutney
- Chopped Cilantro, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 500°. Line a large baking sheet with foil and spray with vegetable oil. In a bowl, mix the flour with the salt and curry powder. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Spread the chicken on the baking sheet in a single layer and spray with vegetable oil. Roast the chicken for 25 – 40 minutes, turning once or twice, until browned and crispy.
- In a bowl, whisk the hot sauce with the butter and chutney. Add the chicken wings and toss. Sprinkle with cilantro.