sparkling holiday punch

This couldn’t be easier! This is the perfect holiday punch because it’s served alcohol free, yet when you mix it 1:1 with white wine, it makes a delicious holiday sangria. Great for kids and adults for brunch or any party or … more

white and dark clusters

I think the only reason my children make candy with me is the reward of licking the chocolate drenched spatulas. It’s a good deal for everyone, actually. While making my traditional bark that my husband hands out at work each … more

goat cheese christmas log

I was trying to come up with something festive for a client’s holiday party when I spied scallions and fresh cranberries in the fridge. Here’s the result – a luscious goat cheese log with scallions and orange spiced dried cranberries. … more

thanksgiving countdown – cranberry relish

Whether you’re preparing for an intimate meal or are expecting a house full, if you’re hosting Thanksgiving this year, there are plenty of things you can do ahead of time. In fact, there are a few items that taste better … more

chicken breakfast sausage

Trying to find chicken breakfast sausage without nightshades (paprika) has proven to be impossible. I’m glad really, because making these myself is quite easy, thanks to my neighborhood butcher who grinds organic, boneless, skinless chicken thighs for me. The flavor … more

butternut squash pumpkin soup

I love soup and stew season. One pot dishes make life a bit easier. This is a beautiful soup that can be made with cream for a richer product, or without for a cleaner, earthier flavor. Usually, I roast butternut … more

tasty gluten-free Thanksgiving side dishes

Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be a huge carb fest. In addition to the requisite Sweet Potato Casserole and Dressing (bread-based dish baked outside the bird), load your menu full of veggies and interesting salads. Here’s a few standards that are … more

applesauce cranberry muffins

This is a twist on my staple muffin. I had some leftover applesauce and wanted to make good use of it. Adding cranberries with a layer of orange flavor adds another lovely dimension. Soft and moist with a streusel topping, these freeze great … more

oven applesauce

My son and I have a habit of watching the cooking channel together. He salivates and tells me what he likes to eat and I take notes. A few nights ago, we watched The Barefoot Contessa, otherwise known as Ina … more

pan roasted frenched pork rib chops with chutney and cabernet demi-glace

I wanted to develop a really complex recipe for frenched pork chops. I love the presentation of a frenched chop and the resulting moistness from any cut of meat with the bone left intact. (If you can’t find frenched chops, … more

chinese five spice blend

I love discovering spice blends and making up my own. My 20-year old Braun spice/coffee grinder finally gave out and I just bought a new one, a little Krups that is wholly dedicated to spices. You can buy Chinese Five … more

nightshade free yellow mustard

Based on the well-guarded French’s Classic Yellow Mustard, below is a version adapted for us lovers of mustard, only gluten-free and nightshade-free. In a world where we’re busier than ever, mustard is the last thing any of us really want … more

new item – gluten-free organic pasta

As I was perusing the “New Items” shelf at my local Trader Joe’s, I came across this pasta – gluten-free and organic to boot. It contains only a handful of ingredients, which I love: organic brown rice flour, organic quinoa, … more


When my husband’s family came from Germany this summer, one of the foods they ate in abundance was Mexican, smothered in everyone’s favorite condiment – guacamole. Whether you like it smooth or chunky, hot or mild, guacamole is that quintessentially … more

indian summer iced tea

I spoke with my sister in Boise yesterday who was experiencing flash floods and storms – quite a contrast from the 97 degree weather we are dealing with here in San Diego. It’s technically still summer, but I have a feeling … more

orange studded breakfast fruit

I love the look of orange sections sliced into a fruit salad – all succulent orange and none of the pith. It’s easier than it looks so long as you have a really sharp, fairly large knife. Make sure you … more

zucchini cakes

I happen to love zucchini, a fondness my family does not share. I’ve been torturing them for years, offering new recipes in the hope they will grow to love this delicately flavored vegetable. Mission accomplished (except for the 10 year … more

gluten-free brownie parfait

I don’t know about you, but I’m always looking for ways to make food stretch at my house. At any given time, I have between two (the ones I’ve got), and eight kids at my house. An easy dessert is … more

lemon slushes

One of my most profound food memories from my childhood is lemon slushes. We had a prolific lemon tree in the backyard that produced plump, juicy, thick skinned Eureka lemons. With them, we made lemon squares (gluten-free recipe to follow shortly), … more

gluten-free tuna quinoa salad with lemon

Served warm or chilled, this tangy salad is perfect for summer. Don’t worry about how much lemon is in here – the quinoa really soaks it up. Flakes of tuna give it a wonderful piquant flavor that meld beautifully with … more

gluten-free citrus rice salad

Wild rice is typically something you would serve in the fall, but I love it year round. You can find it in the bulk section of your health food store. Take a big whiff – it spells exactly like black … more

nightshade-free black bean guacamole

Having to give up one of my favorite cuisines, Mexican food, has been ridiculously difficult. I love moles and salsa, chili relleno and grilled peppers, but they don’t love me. Turns out, they don’t love my daughter either. So, I … more

gluten-free pasta primavera

Half soup, half pasta – all hearty and filling. I love one pot meals especially when it’s cold, and believe it or not, it’s COLD in San Diego. Hail greeted me in the backyard when I came home from errands … more

mexican bowls

This is a perfect lunch or dinner with leftover pot roast. In fact, I make a pot roast just for this purpose. Inspired from my favorite “fast” food restaurant, Chipotle, this was my once a week treat. Now that nightshades … more

night-shade free beef stock

  My sister-in-law Lucy always makes this huge, gorgeous prime rib for Christmas Eve dinner. It’s about the only time of the year that I eat this dish, so I look forward to it, especially the nose-numbing blast I get … more

happy v-day

A few goodies to make for your favorite Valentines on this day of splurging. Valentine Bonbons Chocolate Almond Bark Strawberry Banana Cake Melissa’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups     

chicken and mushrooms

My Hungarian husband is always asking me to make him a good “szaft-y” dish – that’s Hungarian for a dish in a good sauce. When I watched Ina Garten take a Napa, CA vacation where she showcased this wonderful recipe, … more

gluten-free green beans gremolata

I personally could eat green beans every day. Steamed, roasted, blanched and sauteed with olive oil… My husband finally asked for a new presentation. When I saw Ina Garten‘s vacation to Napa show on the Food Network, I knew I’d … more

kid margarita

An oldie, but a goodie! This is a reprint because of a computer quirk. This is a refreshing version of lemon-limeade and a nice option for anyone who doesn’t drink alcohol. Active time: 1 minute Yield: 1 8oz serving 6 … more

greens and butternut squash salad

I just had this salad at Waters, our wonderful local cafe, where we celebrated my sister-in-law Randy’s birthday. I am duplicating it here because it was delicious! This recipe calls for goat cheese – omit if you are dairy intolerant. … more

Balsamic Vinaigrette

This is a very simple dressing to put together, with a nice acidic balance. I use a mini processor, in which case, I need to thin the dressing with a teaspoon or two of water. If you simply shake it … more

gluten-free vegan almond spread

Good for the brain and good for the heart, almonds are also a great way to regulate cholesterol. When I want something fluffy and creamy to dip my veggies or rice crackers in, this is a great option, and a … more

new product – best gf pasta to date!

We’ve tried lots of brands of gluten-free pasta, but bionaturae’s line of organic, gluten-free pasta is the one most highly favored by the two gluten addicts in my home. Made in Italy, their gf pasta comes in four forms: spaghetti, elbow, … more

Omission – hands down the best gluten-free beer

When I first found out I had gluten issues, I resolved to have a stiff upper lip. I could give up sourdough bread and my favorite pasta. I could even give up pie and real chocolate chip cookies, but when … more

mango strawberry sunrise

I use my little magic bullet for this, which gives me a perfect single serving. This doubles easily to provide four little servings for breakfast or an afternoon snack. Having frozen fruit in the freezer makes this a snap! On … more

dandelion greens

I’ve always had a curiosity about the greens I watched my father eat his whole life. My mother steamed or sautéd them with butter, salt and pepper and I would watch him eat a plateful, grateful that I was not … more

all fruit breakfast smoothie

Containing all acid and sub-acid fruits, this smoothie is a great way to cleanse your body first thing in the morning.  A complete food with a perfect balance of protein and starches which are already broken down into amino acids … more

gluten-free almond flour chocolate chip cookies

Elana of Elana’s Pantry came up with the original recipe for these delicious cookies. I’ve made a few changes here as a splurge, substituting butter for oil and brown sugar for agave syrup, which gives the cookies a bit more … more

gluten-free raspberry bon bons

Chocolate and raspberries…what’s not to love? This is a fun project to do with kids. Candy molds are an inexpensive purchase (I got mine at Michaels), and with the bon bon molds, you can fill them with anything you like. … more

turkey stock and soup

We have a post Thanksgiving tradition that wouldn’t be the same without Turkey Soup. It started with my mother-in-law, Anka, and I’m happy to carry the tradition forward. As much a tradition as Thanksgiving itself, the day after offers a … more

turkey shortcake

I can’t, for the life me, think why my dad called this dish “turkey shortcake.” It’s got to be a weird southern thing. Nevertheless, the Thanksgiving leftover I remember most fondly from my childhood is this oddly named dish consisting … more

traditional beef chili

This is my go-to chili; wonderful for a crowd along with all the toppers: cheddar cheese, sour cream, diced red onions and of course, Fritos. I learned a great trick from my friends Jeff and Sandra who make a similar … more

white bean chicken chili

Every year, when I was a kid, my parents hosted a soup party. They found dozens and dozens of soup cups at a restaurant supply store and my mom would make a traditional chicken noodle, hearty Vegetable Soup and a … more

lisa’s greens and quinoa salad

My niece, Lisa came up with this wonderful salad. Brightened with pistachios and cranberries, the quinoa provides a nice punch of protein that would accent a holiday table. This a wonderful side for a Frittata brunch or alongside a nourishing … more

body parts in goo

My friend Sandra came up with these gruesome crowd pleasers. The kids loved these at our last Halloween party. You can use gummy worms or any thing else disgusting that will delight your children. Prep time:  30 minutes Total time: … more

gluten-free pumpkin bon bons

I love anything pumpkin…bread, pancakes…watch for pumpkin soup later this month. So naturally, I figured it would pair well with chocolate. This is a fun project to do with kids. Candy molds are an inexpensive purchase (I got mine at … more

spooky strawberries

Check these out! I found these on Recipe Diva, a great blog I contribute to. These are from the Diva herself. What better way to celebrate strawberries and chocolate for Halloween? And who wouldn’t like to eat a monster with … more

butternut squash soup

I know fall is here when I find butternut squash at my local stores. I always marvel at how simple this recipe is. Every once in a while, I try to monkey around with it by adding green apple, or … more

mediterranean pasta

Enjoy this with a simple green salad. If you want to make this sans dairy, I would replace the feta and parmesan with shredded Daiya mozzarella. Active time: 10 minutes Total time: 30 minutes Yield: 4-6 servings 1 lb. rice … more

white sangria

It’s summer and nothing goes down better than the sweetness of wine with the addition of sparkling water, fruit juice and fresh fruit. In the last few years, I’ve come across dozens of recipes for both red and white sangria. … more

simple syrup

This is a wonderful base for any drink that requires sweetness, alcoholic or non-alcoholic. Wonderful for Summer Lemonade as well as White Sangria, it comes together quickly, and the ratios are always the same. Prep time: 2 minutes Total time: … more

floating ice ring

I love using these when I do a punch because it’s beautiful in it’s own right, and it keeps the punch crisp and cool. Prep time: 5-10 minutes Total time: 8 hours Yield: 1 ice ring Special equipment: 1-piece bundt … more

ridiculously good cream cheese frosting

I found this recipe while looking for a Red Velvet Cake recipe for my friend Sandra. Being a Crimson alum from the University of Oklahoma, she has a particular fondness for Red Velvet Cake or as I like to call … more


A cool compliment to a Mediterranean meal…make it an hour ahead of time so that the flavors can meld together. Great with Garlic Rosemary Chicken. Prep time: 10 minutes Total time: 1 hours, 10 minutes Yield: 3 cups or about … more

summer lemonade

The best lemonade always start with a simple syrup. It takes longer, but it’s smooth, without the grittiness of undissolved sugar. When we received two laundry baskets full of lemons from a friend, we juiced them all and froze the … more

blueberry smoothie

Using a Magic Bullet makes this one serving smoothie a snap. If you want to double it, use the blender. Full of antioxidants, this smoothie can get you going first thing in the morning or provide a pick-me-up for a … more

perfect corn

There’s few things better than a fresh ear of corn in summer. But how many times have we suffered through an over-cooked ear with wilted kernels? Here’s a fool-proof way to make corn that pops as you bite into it. … more

melissa’s chocolate peanut butter cups

A busy mother of three, Melissa devised this finger licking treat which marries two of life’s perfect flavors: chocolate and peanut butter. Gluten and dairy free, but chemical and preservative free as well, your kids will love these. Adults too, … more

maiah’s chocolate zucchini cake

Maiah submitted this as an adaptation from a family recipe. Those of you who have a vegetable garden can testify that there is just so much zucchini you can eat or give to your neighbors! I love that this cake … more

bbq chicken

Summer is just around the bend and for my family that means barbecuing. This is a quick recipe that requires few ingredients and a hot grill. Using ready made, gluten-free BBQ sauce makes it a snap and it tastes great … more

filet with horseradish on greens

Using a small piece of meat (filet is my favorite for this dish), you can produce a protein packed salad that will keep you full most of the day. This is a wonderful lunch or dinner, depending on the quantity … more

coconut strawberry ice cream

Uber delicious and crazy quick. The only requirement is an ice cream maker, which is one of those investments that pays for itself the first summer you use it. This coconut based ice cream is creamy and full of flavor. … more

chocolate puffed rice treats

A classic American treat that is almost always gluten and dairy free! You can use traditional marshmallows or get the more health conscious variety at your local co-op or Whole Foods. My son’s 8th birthday party is tomorrow and this … more

halibut over greens

This is one of my favorite times of year…the halibut are running! A firm, flaky, moist fish, it is my favorite lunch or light dinner over a plate of well seasoned greens. I bought mine (caught wild) at Costco. It’s … more

dill vinaigrette

Bursting with the freshness of lemon and the lightness of dill, but grounded with the tartness of dijon mustard makes this a family favorite. I love it over greens with a piece of fish atop. This is also great on … more

banana strawberry no-milk shake

One more creamy gfcfsf alternative to offer yourself or your kids as a treat. I like mine around 4:00 p.m. when I start my afternoon lag. With lots of fruit and protein, and so thick you can float a slice … more

kitchen sink salad

We love salads in our family and can’t imagine a meal without one. My kids were won over when they were tiny which makes getting raw vegetables into their diet easy. The point of this salad is to use up … more

butterflied roast chicken

I love roasting chickens for a number of reasons – the smell for one will make your family ravenous, and when you do two at a time, you get great leftovers. Not to mention carcasses for stock. But I don’t … more

margherita pizza

I don’t think you should have to give up pizza just because you can longer eat gluten or dairy. With Trader Joe’s Brown Rice Tortillas, I make these in my largest cast iron pan. If you can’t do dairy, try … more

rice pilaf with noodles

Whenever we go to one of our favorite Greek restaurants, my son and I can’t eat the rice because it has those threads of noodles in it. I saw Lucinda Scala Quinn demonstrate a similar dish, so here’s my gluten-free … more


Living in Southern California, I have an apparent fondness for Mexican and Mexican-inspired food that borders on obsessive. Cilantro, onions, limes, garlic and peppers are staples in my kitchen and the family knows that if they don’t like a particular … more

oven roasted bacon

This is my favorite way to make bacon on the weekends, when it’s more than just a slice or two. This is so delicious that my kids have even turned down bacon when they discovered it wasn’t “oven bacon.” I … more

chocolate dipped strawberries

There is something so familiar, yet decadent about a chocolate dipped strawberry. You can do them the night before you serve them and they are perfect the next day. Just take them out of the refrigerator about a half hour … more

rolled tacos

When I want to use up leftover Pot Roast, this is a great, savory snack or dinner. I don’t like to serve fried food very often, but when the family craves it, I figure if they’re going to eat it, … more

chicken chili

Using thighs makes this chili rich and hearty. With a small side salad and a piece of Pamela’s luscious cornbread, you have an amazing meal that only gets better the next day. This recipe was inspired by the brilliant Lucinda … more

herbed hummus

In my quest to develop a short-cut recipe for falafel, I instead came up with a lovely recipe for Herbed Hummus. There’s a few ingredients here, but the result is delicious and complex, and trust me, you’ll love having these … more

quick pesto and pasta

The rich texture of walnuts replace pine nuts and parmesan cheese in this quick and simple recipe. I love to serve this over spaghetti or fusilli pasta. Any leftover pesto is great on crackers. For leftover pasta, simply refresh it … more

stuffed bell peppers

I think this dish was a staple in many homes in the 60’s and 70’s. It’s kind of a classic in the ranks of those huge Campbell soup-based casseroles my mom would make during the week. This has been updated … more

greek salad

This is a great side salad with dinner alongside Chicken Souvlaki and Saffron Rice. Or have it for lunch on it’s own or with leftover Chicken Souvlaki on top to make it heartier. If you can withstand dairy, creamy feta … more

greek vinaigrette

This is a really nice combination of flavors that, for me, epitomize Greek food – garlic, lemon, fresh oregano… I love this on a typical Greek salad, piled high with lots of vegetables, which is the perfect foundation for leftover … more

chicken souvlaki

I love this Greek word for skewered meat. I like just about any Greek food, for that matter. This is a nutritious, yet fun meal for your kids, after all, who doesn’t like meat on a stick? For us with … more

saffron rice

In the past, I kind of shied away from using a lot of saffron because it was so expensive. But I found a little bottle at Trader Joe’s for right around $6. Saffron, the stamen of the crocus flower produced … more

amaretto sour

My girlfriend Sandra just introduced me to this, her favorite drink. We eliminated the sweet & sour mix, most of which contain HFCS and preservatives, and poured and mixed until we got it just right. There were several attempts, but … more

lemon squeeze

The Santa Ana’s are blowing this week. The winds that I always associate with dry warmth now produce a chilly morning and evening draft that reminds me it’s still winter. I am drinking hot tea in the mornings to stay … more

curried zucchini soup

This is a great soup when it’s cool outside or for a light spring supper as well. Lemon adds a surprising freshness. Prep time: 10 minutes Total time: 30 minutes Yield: 4-6 servings (about 5 cups) Special tool: immersion blender … more

lentil soup

I adapted this from the Silver Palate Cookbook by Julee Rosso & Sheila Lukins – fantastic cookbook. You can serve this as a light meal on its own or with a salad. To make it more substantial, add several slices … more

quinoa tabouli

In place of bulgar wheat, this tabouli utilizes protein-rich quinoa as a base. This is a fresh side for a Chicken Wrap, or with any dinner. Or, you can throw chicken or shrimp in and make it a main dish. … more

hot wings & drummettes

Okay, once in a while, I think these are okay, especially for the Super Bowl or Monday night football. At least if you make them homemade, you know what your family is eating and it’s free of trans fat. I … more

celery root slaw

Celery root is one of those under appreciated vegetables that is easily overlooked because it looks like jicama’s ugly cousin. But don’t be put off by it’s appearance. With a sharp knife, you can cut off the stem and slice … more

champagne cosmopolitan cocktail

I adapted this from an old Bon Appetit recipe from years ago. This is a wonderful holiday cocktail. You can serve it at Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s and Valentines Day or for any party, really. This is a regular fixture … more

creamy avocado dressing

When you have to give up dairy, you feel as though you no longer get to experience that luxurious texture we all love. Avocado is the perfect ingredient to give you creaminess without the cream. Total time: 5 minutes Yield: … more

quickest ever GFCF peppermint bark

Short of biting into a candy cane while you’ve got a mouthful of chocolate chips, this recipe is the easiest way to produce that wonderful chocolate-peppermint combination but GFCF style – without the milk. No blocks of chocolate, no layering … more

peppermint bark

I love this stuff. It’s totally addicting, so I’m glad candy canes are only available at Christmas, or I’d be in trouble. This is a fun thing to do with friends or with your kids. It’s a little tricky. Just … more

cucumber salad

A nice change from a green salad, this is a typical Hungarian side, without the sour cream. It’s light and fresh and keeps for another day. My kids love this (even the raw onion part). Prep time: 5 minutes Total … more

pulled pork sandwiches

You can throw this into your crock pot before you leave for work and it will be ready 8-9 hours later. Or if you are away from the house longer than 9 hours, start this in the evening, (8-9 hours … more

bbq chicken pizza

A word about “pizza”. You know those things that your mom made you eat as a child that were just short of a scarring experience? In our house it was Montana Stew which was comprised of ground beef, kidney beans, … more

split pea soup

I make this every Thanksgiving from the leftover ham bone. I cook for quite a crowd – two turkeys and two hams because we love lots of leftovers! This is way to make your holiday ham really stretch, and makes … more

holiday roast turkey with gravy

Thanksgiving is my favorite meal of the entire year – so much so that I replicate it for Christmas with a few changes. Maybe you can too. As for me, when the house smells like roasting turkey and bacon, I … more

cranberry relish

This is a staple at any Thanksgiving table, but I make it year ’round. It’s the perfect topping for a slice of brie atop a rice cracker. Many people like additional fruit (raisins, apples, currants) or nuts (walnuts, pecans) in … more

sauteed haricoverts

I feel like I make a thousand decisions a day. So when I’m standing in front of the produce aisle trying to figure out what to prepare that night, I wish someone would just TELL me what to make. It … more

homemade chicken stock

A few nights ago we had a wonderful rotisserie chicken dinner with our oldest friends, Dan and Debbie, and their three darling girls. With Thanksgiving around the corner, I was eying their chicken carcasses. When they told me they were … more

roasted short ribs

This is a great weekend meal that you can put in the oven and forget about. I buy them whenever they’re on sale because they can be pricey. My kids love these with a gluten-free BBQ sauce. Prep time: 15 … more

ham & cheese rolls kids lunch

With lots of protein, fruits and vegetables, this is a wonderful packed lunch for kids. My two are like hobbits, except instead of eating two breakfasts, they eat two lunches – one at school and another when they get home, … more

easy risotto

I would never have thought that risotto could be this easy. I’ve stood patiently in front of the stove, stirring religiously, after each half cup addition of stock, but this recipe from Ina Garten’s new cookbook How Easy Is That? … more

indian chicken pilaf

I personally like to spice my Indian food until my nose runs and I require three glasses of water just to get through the meal. But my kids are a different matter. This is a recipe I’ve adapted to their … more

speedy black bean soup

This is so easy, it almost doesn’t count as cooking… This would be wonderful with Heather’s Salad as a side. Prep time: 5 minutes Total time: 10 minutes Yield: Serves 6 4 15-oz. cans organic black beans 1 c. water … more

holiday rice pilaf

This pilaf is a wonderful compliment to the No-Fail Roasted Chicken or the Roasted Turkey & Gravy. Studded with orange-infused cranberries, toasted almonds and fresh scallions, it’s perfect for the holidays, but I serve it year around. The wild rice … more

chocolate almond bark

These are inspired by the little candies I cherry pick from the box of See’s that finds its way into our home every Christmas. You can use solely milk chocolate or solely dark for this recipe, but I think half … more

apple crisp

Like an apple pie but without the crust. Good for any time of year, but best in fall, I think, when the apples are perfectly ripe. I’ve made it a couple different ways – with almond flour in the topping … more

creepy cupcakes

If you’re looking for some fun treats for your child’s class party, these cupcakes offer a bit of whimsy with a slight ick factor. Just use a packaged mix – I like Cherrybrook Kitchen or Pamela’s Chocolate Cake mixes and … more

vegetable soup

This is the tastiest fat free soup! In fact, I hate even leading off with that, because “fat-free” is often times flavor-free. Not the case here. This is one of those recipes where you just throw all the ingredients into … more

chips and hummus

My kids like hummus in their lunches with carrots and chips, so I always double this whenever I make it. It’s wonderful in place of mayonnaise in sandwiches or wraps and you can serve it with fresh, raw vegetables. But … more

quick chocolate chip cookies

Not just for little kids, but for big ones too – chocolate chip cookies are the universal comfort food, right up there with mashed potatoes and popcorn. Busy individuals and families take heart. Cherrybrook Kitchen has a wonderful gluten, dairy, … more

roasted turkey breast & gravy

Thanksgiving dinner is my favorite meal of the year.  It’s not just that I love roast turkey or the smell of apple pie and the the long table my daughter and I set every year. I love Thanksgiving because is … more

roasted carrots

It’s said that we taste first with our eyes. I love the deep richness of roasted carrots, but their color adds a particular beauty to any plate. Active time: 5 minutes Total time: 25 minutes Yield: 4-6 servings 6 carrots, … more

cinnamon chocolate snack bars

Full of oats, puffed rice, chocolate and cinnamon, these bars are great not only because they’re tasty, but because you can control the size. My kids rarely finish one of those nutrition bars on their own. Last week, while in … more

garlic rosemary chicken

One of the great things about living in southern California is that you have access to the outdoor grill pretty much all year around. If you don’t however, a grill pan (and a good overhead vent) will do the trick. … more

mushroom tapenade

I like to double this, because it goes quickly. I eat it with a spoon, but would serve it to guests on endive spears or with rice crackers. Prep time: 10 minutes Total time: 15 minutes Yield: About 2/3 cup … more

spanish rice

I usually make a double recipe of Basmati rice so that I always have extra for just this type of recipe. Prep time: 5 minutes Total time: 20 minutes Yield: Serves 4-6 as a side. 1 c. Basmati rice 1 … more

hot quinoa cereal

A nice alternative to oatmeal with lots of fiber and more protein that you’ll find in any other grain. Active time: 3 minutes Yield: 1 serving 1 c. water 1/3 c. quinoa flakes pinch of salt handful of blueberries drizzle … more

pb&b s’mores

Other than a perfectly ripe strawberry, peanut butter and banana on a graham cracker was maybe my dad’s favorite thing to eat. S’moreables makes a gluten-free graham style cracker that doesn’t taste much like a traditional graham cracker, but it … more

beef pot roast and gravy

Your home will smell great when you come home from work and your dinner is ready. Save leftovers for the weekend for a big Machaca breakfast. Mix with your favorite BBQ sauce for BBQ Beef Sandwiches along with Coleslaw or … more

steamed cabbage with caraway

There are certain things that just go together. Caraway and cabbage are one of those perfect pairs. Prep time: 10 minutes Total time:  18 minutes Yield: Serves 4 1/2 green cabbage, cut in half with stem removed 1 T caraway … more

green and yellow rice

I obviously have a love affair with cilantro. I think people either like it or don’t. If it’s not your cup of tea, use Italian parsley or basil instead. Prep time: 5 minutes Total time: 20 minutes Yield: Serves 4 … more

turkey on the grill

You can also use chicken breasts or thighs. Prep time: 5 minutes Total time: 25 minutes Yield: Serves 4 2 turkey tenders (about 1 lb. total) 1 recipe Cilantro Pesto Coat thighs with cilantro pesto and marinate for several hours or … more

organic quick oatmeal

Some of us can eat oatmeal and some can’t. If it’s organic, I’ve found I can tolerate it really well. This is the world’s quickest hot breakfast! Total time: 3 minutes (seriously) Yield: 1 serving 1/2 c. organic quick oatmeal … more

hungarian goulash

My husband is 100% Hungarian and guylas leves, as they say in Hungary, is a hearty stew worthy of a long simmer to be eaten on a fall or winter day. I think every Hungarian family has their own recipe, … more

homemade jam

On a recent trip to Oregon, we hit sweet blackberry season at it’s peak. We picked til our fingers were purple and prickly and didn’t even make a dent in the bushes outside my sister’s beach house. I found Pomona’s … more

sweet and savory dressing

This is my favorite and most requested dressing. It goes perfectly with the Chinese Chicken Salad, but I use it for every salad you can imagine. Prep time: 5 minutes Total time: 5 minutes Yield: 1/2 cup 1/4 c. vegetable … more

no fail roasted chicken

Nothing smells like home more than a roasting chicken. I usually roast two at a time. One for dinner and one for any number of other dishes, like Chinese Chicken Salad, Chicken Tortilla Soup, Chicken Wraps… This is from Ina … more

mock enchilada

I honestly have no idea who named this, but my brothers and sisters and I grew up on it. Even though I can’t partake, I love making it because the smell brings me back to my mom’s kitchen. Great for … more

mushroom soup

Nourishing and easy to make – only a handful of ingredients. Prep time: 15 minutes Total time: 40 minutes Yield:  Serves 4-6; about 2 qts. 1 tsp. olive oil 1 medium onion, finely chopped 1 3/4 – 2 lb. mushrooms, … more

enchilada casserole

This takes some time, but is well worth it! Great for a crowd too and it’s even better the next day. This pairs well with Heather’s Salad and margaritas. Pour Kid Margaritas for your little ones. Prep time: 30 minutes … more

pasta and meat sauce

Semi-homemade makes this tasty and quick. Fennel is the secret ingredient that makes it taste like it’s been simmering on the stove all day. Don’t be intimidated by the long list of ingredients – they’re mostly herbs that you should … more

garlic mustard lemon chicken

Super easy and quick! This is great on the BBQ, which tames the acidity of the mustard. My kids love this and it’s great on pork, too. Prep time: 10 minutes Total time: 25 minutes Yield: Serves 4 8-10 boneless, … more

chicken tortilla soup

This is my husbands favorite meal and a great way to eat up left over cooked chicken. If you don’t have any leftover, just roast two bone-in breasts at 375 degrees for 35 minutes. Prep time: 15 minutes Total time: … more

fruit platter

Never underestimate the appeal of fresh fruit. When I bring an this to a party, fruit is always a nice contrast to all the standard heavy, creamy fare. Use whatever is in season and it makes a beautiful appetizer or … more

essential roasted salsa

This is adapted from Rick Bayless‘ Mexican Kitchen, one of my all-time favorite cookbooks, which should be a staple in your kitchen if you have any fondness at all for Mexican food. Prep time: 10 minutes Total time: 15 minutes … more

chicken and rice soup

This is a staple – hearty and fresh. And it freezes beautifully. Use leftovers from Roasted Chicken. Prep time: 25 minutes Total time: 1 hour Yield: 8-10 servings 2 bone-in chicken breasts 3 T olive oil, divided 2 large carrots, … more

no-milk milkshake

This is so good that kids might forget there’s no ice cream in here. And for adults, it’s a velvety, creamy indulgence. Total time: 5 minutes Yield: 2-3 small servings 1 c. chocolate almond milk (Almond Breeze is GFCFSF) 1 … more

pineapple fizz

I’m always trying to find surreptitious ways to get sugar out of my kids diet. With fruit juices so full of it, this is a good, partially dilluted option. Thirst quenching and simple, it’s also a great alternative for adults … more

peach iced tea

My dad was southern, and iced tea was always in the fridge. Here’s a fresh way to serve it with a kiss of peach. Prep time: 5 minutes Active time: 1 hour Yield: 15 8oz servings 6 of your favorite … more

old fashioned popcorn

Compared to the stuff you put in the microwave, popping corn the old fashioned way is almost as fast, tastes so much better and is a fraction of the cost. Besides, it’s fun and kids love the sound it makes … more

herbed rice

This is my weekday go-to rice. It’s light and fresh and pairs well with chicken and beef. Prep time: 5 minutes Total time: 20 minutes Yield: 6 servings 2 c. white Basmati rice 2 1/2 c. water juice of 1 … more

heather’s salad

A beautiful, delicious salad from my friend, Heather. Using bagged lettuce saves time for this pretty side dish. Prep time: 25 minutes Total time: 25 minutes Yield: Serves 10-12 Special equipment: mini food processor for dressing 2-3 bags salad (including … more


This is one of my favorite things to make for a dinner party because it’s a one pot dish that needs only a green salad to complete the entire meal. Plus, it’s great the next day, too. Don’t be overwhelmed … more