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Taste Testing: Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta

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Move over, cat videos. Tasty videos are the new online obsession.

We've all seen these posted on Facebook from Buzzfeed Food and others. These videos feature a person making a recipe, all filmed from his or her point of view. Some are narrated and others just feature catchy music and captions to go along with the video. The end result is often a delicious and mouthwatering dish that we're lead to believe (because we just saw whole the process) is a cinch to make.

Tasty videos are always entertaining to watch, but there are some recipes I see and my immediate reaction is, Really? Looks like a hot mess to me...

About a month ago, one really caught my eye as something that could just be crazy enough to work: Chicken Bacon Ranch pasta, posted by Twisted Food on Facebook.

Homemade Irish Cream

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irish-cream-featureOriginally posted on Fuchsia-Revolver.org.

I came across a recipe for Homemade Irish Cream that presented me with a perfect excuse to imbibe over the holiday weekend while simultaneously knocking off one of my my foodie resolutions while doing so. Pretty cool. ;)

I guess Irish Cream is considered a cordial... or a liqueur. Serious Eats suggests that the terms are interchangeable, with cordial appearing more often on dessert-like products: liqueurs flavored with coffee, cream, chocolate, etc.

#ThrowbackThursday: Homemade Mustard from Foodie Resolutions for 2015

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In 2015, I set out to complete a list of foodie resolutions over the course of the year. The inspiration for the challenge came from an MSN Food & Drink article featuring 51 new things that foodies should try. Foodie Resolutions have since become a tradition for me to blog about, with goals set at the beginning of each year and progress updates along the way. 

In honor of Oktoberfest, here is a recap of my progress and experience completing one of my 2015 goals: to make homemade mustard. Updated September 2016. 

Pantry Raid: Baked Spinach Rotini Alfredo

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Want to see more posts from Meal Prep Week? Search for #MealPrepWeek or see a recap of all of the posts here.

I came home hungry from work one day and was too lazy to make something from scratch. It happens, right? Rather than resulting to take-out, I peeked around in my pantry and freezer for pasta, cheese, and some spinach to make this tasty Alfredo pasta dish in about a half-hour or less.

It's perfectly OK to use a good, jarred alfredo sauce in this. I totally have in the past and did the little trick of adding onions and garlic to make it taste more like homemade, along with a little milk or cream to thin out the sauce (complete with adding it to the jar and giving the whole thing an ol' swish around to get the last of the sauce out.) If you have a little extra time, then alfredo sauce is definitely better to make and still requires just a few simple ingredients: garlic, butter, cream, and parmesan.

On Pinterest: “BYOL” (Bring Your Own Lunch)

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We've all carried a lunch box at least once in our lifetime. Maybe for some of us, though, the last time we likely got into the routine of bringing a lunch from home dated back to grade school.

Taking lunch to work for me has been hit-or-miss. Sometimes I remember, and other times my lunch ends up forgotten in the fridge or on the kitchen counter as I'm rushing out the door. Some of these ideas, though, just may inspire me to plan ahead to bring lunch more often.

See ideas for easy lunches to make, pack, and take to work curated from Pinterest.

The 3 Must-Have Kitchen Tools for Meal Prepping

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Want to see more posts from Meal Prep Week? Search for #MealPrepWeek or see a recap of all of the posts here.

Earlier this week, I offered tips for how to make the process of meal prepping more enjoyable. My meal prep wouldn’t be successful if not for a few key supplies that are versatile and inexpensive enough to be in everyone's kitchen.

For a small investment in just three tools, you'll be able to neatly weigh, pack, and organize your food for stress-free eating when your schedule gets busy. Here's what they are.

Pantry Raid: Make-and-Freeze Stir-fry Meals

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Want to see more posts from Meal Prep Week? Search for #MealPrepWeek or see a recap of all of the posts here.

Take-out is expensive and not really that great for you. Fortunately, it is really easy to make at home—especially with frozen ingredients that you can assemble, portion, and freeze ahead of time.

For the past few years I've made these make-and-freeze bagged meals. These are similar to ones that you can buy in the frozen section at the store, but customizable with the quantities and ingredients that you want to include. They're also cheaper and healthier, in many cases, since you know exactly what you're putting into them and can add the sauce later to your taste.

My two favorite meals to make are veggie stir-fry with soy chicken (or "fake chicken," as my family likes to call it) and shrimp with broccoli. I combine all of the ingredients, sans sauce, in a bowl and use a cup measure to portion into quart- or gallon-sized freezer bags, mark with the number of servings, and pop in the freezer. They're very simple to assemble, and even quicker to heat up and serve. Top simply with soy sauce or Sriracha, or with a sauce for something fancier.