Appetizer, Dairy-Free, Entrée, Lightened Up, One Pot Dish, Salad, Side, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Exploring Greek Tzatziki

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This dip is light and refreshing. Originally a Greek yogurt dip, tzatziki is traditionally made with cucumbers, garlic, salt, olive oil, sometime lemon juice and fresh herbs like mint, dill, parsley or thyme. It can be used to top gyros, burgers, falafels, salads, “bowls” (see photo below) or a standalone dish. Clearly I took a non-traditional route, swapping avocado for yogurt as the base. I also used mint instead of dill and want to try this again with equal proportions to be more versatile. Even with the “lightened up” swaps, Avocado Tzatziki is still light, so fluffy and especially tasty. I’ve been dipping away with Kashi pita chips and 7 grain crackers, baby carrots and cucumber sticks.

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Appetizer, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Snack, Vegetarian

Get Spicy & Sweet with Spiced Nuts

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Ohh, these are tasty. So tasty, in fact, that I couldn’t stop myself from grabbing one while they cooled. And one more, and maybe just another… The kitchen smells heavenly while these Spiced Almonds, Pecans & Cashews bake. Another winning recipe from the brilliant culinary mind of Giada De Laurentiis in her cookbook, Giada’s Feel Good Food, the unusual mixture of spices creates a sweet, yet savory combo that anyone is sure to enjoy.

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Appetizer, Better Than Takeout, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Side, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Crisply Baked Spicy Bang Bang Cauliflower

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Let’s bring these bad boys back to basics. All the recipes I found for Bang Bang Shrimp or Bang Bang Cauliflower called for panko, breadcrumbs, mayo, honey, eggs, sugar, milk . . . I mean, man, those recipes were still delicious. Breaded, crisply fried and just packed with a kick. I needed a better, lighter option. I obtained a recipe for Bang Bang Shrimp using only four ingredients for the sauce via Pinterest. With some tweaking and using this as inspiration, I cut the original recipes’  fluff and kept all the flavor. (Double points if you add even more spice to your life and prep these Bang Bang Cauliflower, while listening to “Bang Bang.”)  A great option for anyone allergic to seafood, has gluten-free or vegan needs or just willing to try something different. Plus, these super spicy morsels are baked, not fried, and still get crispy and perfectly browned in the oven. Sounds like an all around winning dish to me.

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Appetizer, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Mexican, Side, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Holy Guacamole

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Guacamole is an instant crowd-pleaser, and it’s so easy to make! This recipe allows the natural creaminess of the avocados to speak for itself without any added sour cream, yogurt or mayo; Homemade Guacamole smooth and rich enough as is. The fresh ingredients add enough flavor without overwhelming the guacamole as a whole. This pairs perfectly with your favorite salsa and some blue corn tortilla chips, multigrain tortilla chips or sweet potato chips. This fresh guacamole is so good, you’ll never spend money on that store-bought stuff again!

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