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Daniel

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Mac & Cheese:

Easy Mac and Cheese Variations​

  • Change up the cheese. Maria’s recipe calls for all havarti cheese, but I like to make mine with 1/2 havarti and 1/2 sharp white cheddar cheese for a stronger flavor. Gouda would also be delicious here.
  • Add veggies. In the book, Maria talks about how this mac and cheese recipe is a great template for all sorts of veggies. I added steamed peas to mine, but steamed broccoli or asparagus or sautéed spinach would also be great mix-ins.
  • Play with the pesto. I made my mac and cheese with a super-green spinach pepita pesto, and it was delicious. Of course, a classic basil pestowould be excellent, as would kale pesto, or any variety of pesto you like! See this post for some of my favorite variations. You could also skip the pesto entirely!
  • Make it tangier. Stir 1/2 teaspoon dried mustard powder or 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard into the cheese sauce.
  • Use your favorite pasta shape. I used classic elbow pasta, but cavatappi, orecchiette, farfalle, or little shells would all be good too.
  • Make baked mac and cheese. Transfer the finished stovetop mac to a baking dish, and top it with panko bread crumbs and grated Parmesan cheese. Broil for 3 minutes, until the bread crumbs are golden brown.



 
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Sheet-pan recipes:









Sheet-pan desserts:

 
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Healthier version of alfredo using Greek yogurt:

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup white wine (or water, vegetable broth, or chicken broth – but the latter two will make the sauce less white)
  • 1 cup non-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese*
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. coarse black pepper
*Do not use grated Parmesan. The measurement is different. Grated Parmesan takes up less space. If you do have grated and have to go with it, use 1/2 cup.
 
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Healthy or "healthier" desserts:

STRAWBERRY SHAKE

You can make a small smoothie for now or make a bigger one and stick one in the fridge / freezer for later. If you put it in the freezer, take it out a few minutes before you want to have it or microwave it if the cup is microwave safe.

Food processors don’t handle liquids as well, so you have to be careful to not fill them too full or just be mindful of the max liquid line. Start with hard foods and move to liquids, therefore, you should start with frozen strawberries on the bottom and liquid on the top.

Ingredients:
  • Frozen strawberries
  • Milk (skim, almond, soy, etc.)
  • Yogurt (vanilla, plain, etc. – plain is a way to reduce sugar)
  • Honey
Instructions:
  • For the food processor, add frozen strawberries, yogurt, and honey, and blend.
  • Once most of the strawberry chunks have processed, add in the liquid (milk). Be very mindful of the levels because food processors are not made to handle large amounts of liquid. Stay below the seal (or if there is a fill / liquid line) so that you don’t seep over the edges.
  • Pour and enjoy!


 
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Cajun recipes:


 
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Dutch oven recipes:


Smothered Cabbage and Potatoes is a down home southern favorite. It’s a simple side dish full of flavor and goes great with chicken or pork. Or serve it with cornbread as a main dish.

Instructions
  • In a Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 4 minutes, or until soft.
  • Add cabbage, potatoes, broth, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes.
  • Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove lid and increase heat to medium-high. Cook until most of liquid has evaporated (about 12 to 14 minutes), stirring occasionally.
 
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Easy recipes with a can of cream of mushroom soup :


  • 1(3 -4 lb) chuck roast
  • 1(10 ounce) can Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup
  • salt
  • pepper
 
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Main Course and Entrée Recipes
 
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10 minute prep time with the help of a blender:


Instant Pot recipes for black bean soup:

 
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Vegan sandwiches:

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1654525897544.jpg

vegan tikka masala

A totally plant-based version of the Indian-inspired dish with yogurt-marinated tofu cooked in a rich and creamy (and spicy!) coconut-tomato sauce. Make it in a skillet or the Instant Pot and freeze for up to three months.


 
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Hash Brown Waffles​

I first saw the delightful idea of cooking hash browns in a waffle iron on the blog Tea and Cookies — and promptly wondered why we didn't always make them this way. I adapted a version of my favorite latke recipe, for a more cohesive hash-brown cake. Smoked salmon and sour cream make a great topping, but you can also use a runny poached egg or a dollop of sour cream and applesauce.

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Makes about 4 waffles, depending on the size of your iron

  • 3 medium or 2 very large russet potatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • Several grinds pepper
  • High-heat oil (such as grapeseed or canola) for greasing the waffle iron
  • Sour cream, chives and smoked salmon for serving, if desired

Line a strainer with a large piece of cheesecloth or a loose-weave dishtowel, and place in the sink or over a bowl. Shred the potatoes and onions on the coarse holes of a box grater and place the shreds in the lined strainer, alternating between the two and mixing the shreds together (the onions will help keep the potatoes from discoloring).

Pick up the ends of the dishtowel or cheesecloth and gather it around the load of shredded vegetables. Twist and squeeze to wring as much liquid as possible from the mixture, twisting further as more liquid is released. When it's as dry as possible, place the wrung-out mixture in a large mixing bowl. Stir in the egg, flour, salt and pepper.

Preheat a waffle iron (if it has settings, go for medium-high). Brush generously with oil, then add enough of the potato mixture to form a solid layer. Brush the top of this mixture with additional oil, then close the lid and press down firmly. (The potatoes will resist more than a batter, so you want to press down enough to ensure full iron contact, for maximum crusty results.) Bake until the waffle is well browned — at least 5 minutes and possibly longer (again, depending on your iron). Serve, topped with sour cream and smoked salmon, if desired.
 

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I bought more eggplant than I know what to do with. I did find some recipes at the New York Times and Allrecipes. At the Instant Pot website, I found an eggplant curry, so I will do something like that.

For another time, I found this Mediterranean-inspired stew recipe. It can be cooked on the stove or in an Instant Pot. Should go well with rice, noodles, quinoa, or even Greek yogurt -- or as a topping for fried/baked eggplant:


Ingredients
  • Eggplant
  • Tomatoes
  • Onion
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Filtered Water
  • Ground Cumin Powder
  • Ground Cayenne Powder
  • Himalayan Pink Salt [or just salt]
1654801880373.jpg

1654809763787.jpg

Printable Instant Pot recipe based on serving amount
 
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McCormick (known as Club House in Canada) makes spice packets now for the Instant Pot:


Amazon productAmazon product

1654953822663.jpg

In the US, Target sells their own brand of sauces for easy cooking on the stove, in a slow cooker, or in the Instant Pot:


From one review: "I threw one jar on 3Lbs of chicken I made in the instant pot with a side of broccoli and my family couldn’t get enough."
 
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