Warm Kale and Bacon Dip

Kale and Bacon Dip

Are you in the hustle and bustle of the holidays already? I certainly am, but I love holiday entertaining! Trust me, entertaining this time of year can be fun and easy. I am very excited to share this recipe for Warm Kale Bacon Dip just in time for your holiday gatherings. It’s my family’s favorite appetizer as it uses a few of our most loved ingredients such as kale, Borden and Sargento cheeseDannon Oikos Greek Yogurt and Bays English Muffins. What I really love about this recipe is its simplicity by using high-quality brands of shredded cheeses along with healthy ingredients such as Greek yogurt and kale. Friends ask me all the time for my top stress-free cooking tip and I usually tell them to keep it simple. Use your favorite ingredients and stop by the dairy and/or freezer section to make your life even easier. You can find so many items in these sections of the grocery store, which make cooking more economical, convenient and your recipes taste even better.

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For this dip recipe, start by roasting the kale with a touch of olive oil until it is slightly wilted and crispy. Then, add to the cheeses and yogurt, stirring well. Complete this by topping with crumbled bacon. If you’re not a bacon fan, you may omit this step. I used Bays English Muffins from the dairy section, which are a perfect accompaniment to this warm cheesy dip with their great texture and flavor.

Besides being tasty, this holiday appetizer is healthy too! It is filled with calcium, one of the body’s most important minerals for strong healthy bones, as well as active cultures in the Greek yogurt, which adds more protein to this appetizer while also aiding in digestion and boosting the immune system (we all need this during the cold winter months). Kale is another fabulous, healthy ingredient addition, known as a super-food with vitamins and minerals.

For more great recipes using frozen and refrigerated foods see Easy Home Meals.

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This post is sponsored by National Frozen and Refrigerated Foods Association and Easy Home Meals, but all opinions are my own.

Pancake Yogurt Breakfast Bites

 Pancake Yogurt Bites

We are already in our second week of school. Can you believe it? No matter what age your kids are (mine are 13, 15 and 17), school mornings can be hectic. I needed a healthy back-to-school breakfast recipe that was going to make my kids smile in the morning, so I came up with these Pancake Yogurt Breakfast Bites using Kellogg’s Mini Pancakes. The frozen food aisle has become my best friend lately with so many fabulous items that are a great value and allows the busiest of people to be creative in the kitchen. Don’t forget that there are a variety of different cuisines represented on this aisle, including options that cover snack-time, breakfast, lunch, dinner, entertaining and specialty food occasions. With back to school schedules and fall activities, this aisle makes my life so much easier (and sometimes less expensive). This breakfast recipe is just a start. Feel free to add your favorite toppings such as Nutella and sliced bananas (see below)  to make something new for breakfast, an afternoon snack or dessert. For more recipes using frozen foods, fruits and vegetables see Easy Home Meals.

Pancakes Bites with Nutella

 

Mango Bread

Mango Bread

June is National Dairy Month so to celebrate, try this Mango Bread. If you’re wondering, what does a quick bread have to do with dairy foods, this recipe actually contains Yoplait’s Apricot Mango Yogurt and Silk soy milk and frozen mango chunks (from the freezer section). This recipe is also very easy, and there’s no mixer needed (just combine everything in one bowl). The dairy aisle is beyond cool! People tend to think of the dairy aisle as the place for everyday foods, but there are truly so many creative ways to use dairy aisle ingredients in cooking and baking. Foods are made from real, fresh, farm-grown ingredients that we need for our well-balanced lifestyle. They are nutritious and make mealtime possibilities endless for breakfast, lunch and dinnertime. Of course, people enjoy treating themselves to delicious, tasty meals and in the dairy aisle you can find a variety of indulgent treats (from appetizers to desserts). For mealtime inspiration, visit www.EasyHomeMeals.com, and follow Easy Home Meals on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest This post is sponsored by Easy Home Meals, but all opinions are my own.

Taquito Layered Dip: Cinco De Mayo

Taquito Layered Dip

Happy May and Cinco De Mayo! I am finally back from Italy, and now is the time to spice it up for summer entertaining just in time for Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, graduation, lake and beach parties. I made this Taquito Layered Dip today when I was having some friends over, and I saved a ton of time by using Chicken Taquito’s by Jose Ole. Feel free to use the chicken or steak varieties, and add your favorite southwestern toppings such as black olives, cilantro, avocado or jalapeños. You can also make your life simpler (and sometimes save money) using frozen foods to create fabulous appetizers, main dishes and even desserts. There are a huge variety of different cuisines represented in the freezer aisle, including options that cover snack-time, breakfast, lunch, dinner, entertaining and specialty food occasions. If you like southwestern food, the options of frozen food choices are endless. For more recipes such as these using frozen foods see Easy Home Meals.

This post is sponsored by Easy Home Meals, but all opinions are my own.

Spinach Mango Protein Shooters

My 3 kids and I have been really into smoothies lately, and yes, they honestly do drink “green” variations. I made these Spinach Mango Protein Shooters for breakfast, and they were quite the hit!  I ended up making this again after a tough “Insanity” workout yesterday, and it was an amazing pick-me-up. It’s perfect filled with spinach, mango and a protein boost from Greek yogurt. I love using frozen mango and don’t forget: Frozen fruits and vegetables are just as healthy as fresh. They are actually picked at their peak and flash-frozen (see more on this at Easy Home Meals). I used my newest kitchen equipment addition for this recipe: The Nutribullet, which makes it so easy to make a smoothie for one (or for small amounts). Enjoy!

Fast and Easy Chicken and Dumplings

Fast and Easy Chicken and Dumplings? Is that really possible? It is with this recipe. My friend Rick made this for my dad recently, and he and my 3 kids loved it! This is comfort food at its best. I love that this recipe uses rotisserie chicken, Bisquick Heart Smart and frozen vegetables. This speeds up the prep and cooking process but doesn’t sacrifice taste or quality. This makes a great weeknight or Sunday night main dish. You’ll keep this recipe on hand for years to come! See more recipes using frozen foods at Easy Home Meals.

 

Marinated Shrimp: Summer Recipe

I can’t believe summer is here, but I am so glad. I have been ready for the kids to be out of school, and for all of the cool, fresh summer dishes, such as this Marinated Shrimp recipe. This shrimp dish is perfect for a summer appetizer, layered over some fresh greens or arugula or just served along some quinoa and grilled asparagus. It makes a great party, shower or summer afternoon recipe. It’s so easy, taking only 20 minutes to prepare. I used frozen, fresh shrimp which saved me even more time and money. For more ways to use frozen foods visit Easy Home Meals. This is the kind of recipe I crave this time of year, and my 3 kids love it too! By the way, this recipe was adapted from the May issue of Southern Living. See great storage containers for summer recipes at Shopbot.ca. I hope everyone has a great week ahead and happy summer! 🙂