Broccoli Cheddar Mashed Potatoes |

Broccoli Cheddar Mashed Potatoes

An easy recipe for cheesy, delicious Broccoli Cheddar Mashed Potatoes made in minutes with Idahoan® Signature™ Russets Mashed Potatoes. Thanks to Idahoan® Foods for sponsoring this post.

Broccoli Cheddar Mashed Potatoes |

For Easter this year, my kids have their hearts set on going to the zoo, playing outside and hunting for Easter eggs (of course) – all as a family.  With fun family time a priority, I was looking to make changes to simplify our Easter menu with delicious results made easy. Fortunately, I discovered mashed potatoes made in minutes with a tasty twist with this Broccoli Cheddar Mashed Potatoes recipe. 

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Cheesy Cornbread Muffins |

Cheesy Cornbread Muffins

Cheesy Cornbread Muffins are easy, cheesy buttermilk cornbread muffins that take minutes to prepare and pair perfectly with a bowl of soup! Thank you to Idahoan® for sponsoring this post.

Cheesy Cornbread Muffins |

I have never seen a batch of muffins disappear as quickly as these Cheesy Cornbread Muffins. My kids wanted them for breakfast, lunch and dinner…and I don’t blame them. I managed to sample a portion of one of these tasty muffin morsels. They are cheesy good and have the delicious taste of cornbread with a hint of sweetness. It was one of those moments that brought my mind to a familiar place…a favorite local steakhouse! …

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An easy recipe for Oven Roasted Broccoli with Tomatoes {vegan, gluten free} |

Oven Roasted Broccoli with Tomatoes

Tracking PixelThis easy recipe for Oven Roasted Broccoli with Tomatoes is so simple and delicious, it makes eating vegetables irresistible! {gluten free, vegan, vegetarian}  Thank you to Hunt’s Tomatoes for sponsoring this post.

An easy recipe for Oven Roasted Broccoli with Tomatoes {vegan, gluten free} |

My family loves steamed broccoli, but sometimes when we eat it night after night, sometimes I hear the groans ‘broccoli again?’  I get it – we all like a little variety. Not all vegetables are necessarily created equal when feeding kids, but I can certainly come up with a new way to prepare a favorite.

When I found  this recipe for roasted Brussels sprouts with tomatoes, I decided to swap the broccoli for the Brussels sprouts, make a few changes and see what happens. The result was a wonderful recipe for Oven Roasted Broccoli with Tomatoes!…

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Roasted Red Pepper Hummus |

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus is a delicious and healthy dip (or spread) that is so easy to make at home. {vegan, gluten free}  Thank you to through the Mom It Forward Blogger Network for sponsoring this post.

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus |

This Roasted Red Pepper Hummus recipe can be made in minutes using common pantry ingredients. Not only does it taste fresh and delicious, but it is also a great recipe to get the kids involved. My kids love to pour in the ingredients and (of course) power the food processor. (Mama, can I pulse it just one more time pleeeeeeease?)…

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Cheesy Green Bean Casserole | #recipes

Cheesy Green Bean Casserole {No Soup}

For a healthier twist on a holiday classic favorite, try this easy recipe for a Cheesy Green Bean Casserole that is creamy, cheesy, made with Greek yogurt and without soup.  Thank you to Del Monte (through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select) for sponsoring this post!

Cheesy Green Bean Casserole | #recipes

Now that it is November, we are eagerly planning our holiday menus. When planning side dishes, one dish that almost always appears at every family holiday gathering is Green Bean Casserole. It is the same, traditional recipe that everybody makes.  However, in preparation for this year, I decided to give Green Bean Casserole a healthier, tastier makeover. This result is a Cheesy Green Bean Casserole that is a huge crowd pleaser for the whole family!…

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An easy recipe for Roasted Cauliflower that tastes good! | #recipes #PantryInsiders #cauliflower #glutenfree #vegan

Roasted Cauliflower #PantryInsiders

An easy recipe for Roasted Cauliflower that is made with heart-healthy olive oil, garlic and seasonings and tastes delicious! {gluten free, vegan} #pantryinsiders

An easy recipe for Roasted Cauliflower that tastes good! | #recipes #PantryInsiders #cauliflower #glutenfree #vegan

The other day Adam came home from school and told me he had cauliflower for lunch…and that it was so good!  I have never really eaten cauliflower, much less made it at home, so I saw this as a great opportunity to broaden our horizons.  If school can make roasted cauliflower taste delicious, then hopefully I can too!…

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Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes #PantryInsiders

A popular side dish gets lightened up with these fluffy Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes. {gluten free}

Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes |

The other night we were looking to make an easy side dish to go with our steak dinner. Mashed potatoes are always a tasty pair with steak, but I wanted to come up with something lighter and healthier.  Since August is National Olive Oil Month, I have  had olive oil on the brain lately.  It seemed like the perfect opportunity to swap butter for olive oil to make some tasty Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes.  …

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Kale and Apple Potato Salad | #recipes #potatosalad #ProudOfIt

Kale and Apple Potato Salad

Kick off the unofficial start to summer with a fun twist on a classic summer staple with this Kale and Apple Potato Salad!  Thank you to MIRACLE WHIP (through the Mom It Forward Blogger Network) for sponsoring this post.   

Kale and Apple Potato Salad |

With the school year coming to an end and Memorial Day just around the corner, let the unofficial start of summer begin! I used to think of summer as a time to relax, but our summer schedule is packed with camps, classes and potluck parties.  I always like to bring something special to potlucks (in addition to a dessert of course!) but often don’t have a ton of time to spend on it. That’s where this Kale and Apple Potato Salad comes to the rescue!…

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Parsley Pesto Potato Salad | #recipes #SundaySupper

Parsley Pesto Potato Salad #SundaySupper

Parsley Pesto Potato Salad puts a fun, picnic spin on parsley potatoes.  It is a healthier potato salad, made with roasted yellow Idaho® potatoes and tossed in a lighter parsley pesto sauce.  

Parsley Pesto Potato Salad

Potatoes are such a great and versatile vegetable that can be served up in many ways that my whole family will eat it (score!)  Baked, mashed, whipped, ‘fried,’ or in a salad, it’s all good.  This Parsley Pesto Potato Salad uses delicious yellow Idaho® potatoes cooked using my favorite method – roasted!  Add in a fresh and vibrant parsley pesto sauce to drizzle and toss with the potatoes, and you’ve got a rock star party Parsley Pesto Potato Salad that everybody will love!…

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Burgundy Porcini Risotto | #recipes #risotto

Burgundy Porcini Risotto

Burgundy Porcini Risotto is a rich, cheesy risotto made with porcini mushrooms and red wine.  While risotto may seem intimidating, it truly is very easy to make and definitely something worth trying.  

Burgundy Porcini Risotto | #recipes #risotto #glutenfree

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post by Gallo Family Vineyards Hearty Burgundy via the Mom It Forward Blogger Network.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

One of the key components of risotto is wine.  People always say the wine you use to cook should be a wine you enjoy to drink.   I typically make risotto with white wine, but generally prefer to drink red wine over white.  So I decided to experiment and take one of our favorite risotto recipes and use one of my favorite red wines – Gallo Family Vineyards Hearty Burgundy.  The Hearty Burgundy is a bold, flavorful wine that goes beautifully with the Parmesan cheese, mascarpone cheese,  and porcini mushrooms in this dish.  I decided to leave out the spinach from the original recipe, because I really wanted the red wine to shine through.  The result was an amazing, cheesy, earthy risotto with the rich flavors from the Hearty Burgundy harmonizing with each bite….

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Sweet Potato Hummus - sweet, spicy, vegan, delicious!

Sweet Potato Hummus #SundaySupper

Sweet Potato Hummus is a little sweet, a little spicy and a lot delicious! This hummus is healthy, quick and easy to make, and vegan.

Sweet Potato Hummus from Alida's Kitchen

With Football season means it is tailgating time!  Whenever I’m tailgating, at a barbecue, picnic or party, the first thing I look for is something healthy, like fresh vegetables.  And if there is something healthy to go with them, such as hummus, I am a happy girl!  It just so happens that ‘tailgating’ is the theme for this week’s Sunday Supper, and I am bringing to the party a healthy treat to go with that ~ Sweet Potato Hummus!

Who would have thought the addition of sweet potato to a basic hummus recipe, along with some spice and some heat, would result in such a tasty (and healthy!) dip.   Paprika and chipotle seasoning really enhance the sweet potato and are otherwise complementary to the traditional hummus flavors.  Sweet Potato Hummus is also very easy to make and a wonderful accompaniment to a vegetable tray, pretzel crisps or whole wheat pita chips. It would also be great on a wrap or as a sandwich spread.

Be sure to check out what the rest of the Sunday Supper group brought to our Tailgate party!

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Cranberry Cornbread

Cranberry Cornbread puts a fun, fall/wintery twist on traditional cornbread.  We have been making chili almost weekly these days, and of course what goes better with chili than cornbread.  I used a cornbread muffin recipe from Cooking Light for the base, making a few adjustments to accommodate the cranberries.  Fresh cranberries add just the right amount of tartness which is balanced nicely with brown sugar.  Buttermilk lends a moist crumb, and the result is a delicious tart-sweet cornbread.  Cranberry Cornbread would make a nice side dish for Thanksgiving, or any holiday, and of course pairs very well with a spicy chili!

Speaking of chili, I am working on a fabulous new chili recipe to share with you soon.  In the meantime, this Three Bean Vegetarian Chili can be made in less than 30 minutes and is our current chili of choice.

Cranberry Cornbread
Yields: 16 servings
  • 1¼ cups buttermilk
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries, halved
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray 8" square baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl (or in a liquid measuring cup) combine buttermilk, oil and egg.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  4. Add milk mixture to flour mixture, folding until just combined. Gently fold in cranberries.
  5. Pour mixture in prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the top with sugar. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.

Adapted from Cooking Light, September, 2012

cranberry cornbread

easy parmesan black pepper buttermilk drop biscuits

Parmesan-Black Pepper Drop Biscuits

There is nothing better than having warm fresh buns, bread or biscuits at the dinner table. Due to the time involved, that is often saved for the weekend. We’re always looking for quick and easy dinners, including accompaniments. Enter the wonderful world of drop biscuits! By simply dropping the dough instead of rolling and cutting, these can be made in around 15 minutes ~ just the amount of time you need to sear your meat, set the table, make a salad, catch up on your blog reading…or whatever you need to do. The result is fresh warm biscuits in no time. How nice is that!

From the original recipe, I used Parmesan cheese instead of Asiago cheese, as I was trying to use up what I had on hand.  Either way is really good.  I added garlic powder, which definitely enhances the flavor in these biscuits.  I have tried using whole wheat pastry flour instead of all-purpose flour and found the whole wheat pastry flour yielded subpar results.  Light butter or regular butter work fine, but I’m always happy to shave off some calories if the light version works in a recipe.
Parmesan-Black Pepper Drop Biscuits are versatile, quick and easy to make.  Great for a weeknight dinner, a last minute side or simply just because you’re craving warm biscuits.
Parmesan-Black Pepper Drop Biscuits
Yields: 8 biscuits
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1½ tablespoons light butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
  • ½ cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese (or Asiago cheese)
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Combine flour, baking powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper in medium bowl.
  3. Into flour mixture, cut in butter with a pastry blender (or 2 knives) until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add cheese and toss well to combine. Add buttermilk and fold until just moist.
  4. Drop dough into 8 equal mounds on lined baking sheet. Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until edges are browned.

Adapted from Cooking Light

Porcini Mushroom and Spinach Risotto with Mascarpone

Years ago, I aspired to make risotto for the first time.  But I hesitated, because it was a little intimidating and seemed quite difficult.  Coincidentially, around the same time, I happened to catch a cooking show about risotto.  The chef explained step-by-step how to make it and alleviated any uncertainty I had.  Armed with a recipe from Cooking Light, I was bound and determined to perfect the art of making risotto!
Fortunately, risotto was just as easy to make as the professionals on television led me to believe.  Years later, we are still enjoying that same recipe, however since then I have incorporated a few changes to the original recipe.  I swapped oregano for thyme, added lots of fresh spinach and used vegetable broth to make this a vegetarian dish.
While we enjoy this risotto as a vegetarian entree, it of course makes for a wonderful side dish.  Porcini Mushroom and Spinach Risotto with Mascarpone is a household favorite, suitable for company, and a definite crowd pleaser.
Porcini Mushroom and Spinach Risotto with Mascarpone
  • 1½ cups boiling water
  • ½ ounce dried porcini mushrooms
  • 14 ounces vegetable broth
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 cup uncooked Arborio rice (or other short-grain rice)
  • ¾ cup chopped shallots
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup white wine
  • ¼ cup (2 ounces) grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • ¼ cup (1 ounce) mascarpone cheese
  • 1½ teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 cups chopped fresh spinach
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Combine boiling water and mushrooms; let stand for 10 minutes. Drain through colander over a bowl. Reserve 1¼ cups soaking liquid, and chop mushrooms.
  2. In a small sauce pan, bring soaking liquid and broth to a simmer (do not boil), keeping mixture warm over low heat.
  3. Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Spray with cooking spray. Add rice, shallots and garlic; saute 5 minutes, or until the rice gets browned and toasted.
  4. Add wine and cook until liquid evaporates (about 2 minutes).
  5. Reduce heat to medium. Add 1 cup broth mixture to rice mixture and cook until liquid is nearly absorbed (about 5 minutes); stirring frequently.
  6. Add remaining broth mixture ½ cup at a time, stirring frequently, until each portion of the broth mixture is nearly absorbed before adding the next (about 25 minutes total).
  7. Remove pan from heat. Add mushrooms, cheeses, oregano, spinach, salt and pepper, stirring gently until combined and cheese melts. Serve warm.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 4 servings
Adapted from Cooking Light

Rosemary Roasted Potatoes

As my rosemary plant continues to flourish, so continues my search for tasty recipes using rosemary.  I recently made Herbed Balsamic Grilled Chicken, which required a suitable accompaniment.  For some reason it was just screaming potatoes to me.  

This recipe for Rosemary Roasted Potatoes has a nice short list of ingredients and could not be any easier.  It is very hands off, which worked well with cooking the rest of the meal on the grill (or doing whatever else you need to do).

The only changes I made from the original recipe were adding more garlic and increasing the amount of potatoes to use up my 2 pound bag.  Otherwise, this recipe is absolutely THE perfect go-to recipe for roasted potatoes.

Rosemary Roasted Potatoes
Serves 6 to 8

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, minced
1/2 teaspoon kosher flake salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 pounds red potatoes, quartered
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

  1. Cut potatoes in quarters and put in bowl with the olive oil, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper.  Toss making sure potatoes are well-coated.
  2. Dump potatoes on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet and spread out so they are 1 layer.
  3. Roast in oven for at least an hour, or until browned and crisp.  Flip twice during cooking to ensure evenly browning. 

Slightly adapted from Ina Garten

Herbed-Grilled Tomatoes

Copyright 2011 Alida’s Kitchen. All rights reserved.

Growing up, I remember summer was filled with an abundance of zucchini, rhubarb and tomatoes. According to me, zucchini was best served as bread, rhubarb was best served as crisp and tomatoes were best served to someone else. I was not a fan of tomatoes.

Actually, I still do not care for plain tomatoes, unless they are in a salad. I like my tomatoes made into something. And I must say, these Herbed-Grilled Tomatoes are definintely something!

Of course you can’t go wrong with balsamic vinegar, fresh basil and garlic. In fact, that makes for a pretty common (and tasty) vinaigrette.  The role of the marinade in this dish is perfectly subtle.   

What takes these tomatoes from ordinary to extraordinary is in the grilling. The charring from the grill, combined with the marinade, results in tomatoes literally bursting with fresh flavor.  Topped with Parmesan cheese, Herbed-Grilled Tomatoes are an easy, healthy, and delicious side dish made on grill.

Herbed-Grilled Tomatoes
Yields 4 servings (2 tomato halves per serving)

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon minced fresh basil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
4 medium tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon grated fresh Parmesan cheese

  1. In a wide shallow bowl (13 x 9 baking dish works well) mix together the olive oil, vinegar, garlic, basil, salt and pepper.
  2. Add tomatoes, and turn to coat them on all sides.
  3. Prepare grill: brush grates with oil or spray with cooking spray, and preheat to medium high.
  4. Place tomatoes, cut sides down, on the grill rack.  Brush once with remaining marinade, and then discard marinade.  Grill about 5-7 minutes on each side, or until tomatoes begin to blister, soften and brown.  (Note:  They can burn easily so keep an eye on them.)
  5. Remove the tomatoes from grill and top with parmesan cheese.  Garnish with fresh basil leaves, if desired.  Serve immediately.

Adapted from Health, June, 2007