Category Archives: Vegetables

Blue Cheese Dip

Blue Cheese Dip @ NancyCIf you like thick, creamy dips and blue cheese, you’ll have to try this! This Blue Cheese Dip is made with plain Greek yogurt (or you can substitute light or fat-free sour cream). I like to use fat free Greek yogurt. I know not everyone is a fan of blue cheese–in fact, people seem to either really love it or hate it. I’ve always liked it. Actually, I can’t think of any kind of cheese that I don’t like!🙂

This is a good recipe for summer, if you want to have a snack with fresh veggies. It’s good with crackers or chips, too. And it would also be yummy with something spicy like buffalo chicken wings. It’s super quick and easy to make and if you have time, you’ll want to make it a day ahead and store it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve it–for some reason, this dip seems to taste better when made ahead!


Makes about 1 2/3 cups (tastes best when made a day before serving)

  • 4 oz. finely crumbled blue cheese (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) plain Greek yogurt or light sour cream (or 1/2 cup of each)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 Tablespoons light mayonnaise
  • Optional: salt and pepper to taste; you can also add in some garlic or onion powder too, if you like!

In medium size bowl, mix blue cheese crumbles with plain Greek yogurt or sour cream. Add in the lemon juice and mayonnaise, blending everything well. Add salt and pepper to taste, if desired. Spoon mixture into serving bowl and serve or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve–it tastes best if you make it the day before serving it!

Serve with crackers, veggies, or chips. Also tastes great with spicy foods like Buffalo Chicken Wings!

So are you a fan of blue cheese too? Do you have a favorite blue cheese recipe?

Linked to Fiesta Friday, Weekend Potluck, Inspire Me Monday, Full Plate Thursday, Create It Thursday, Thursday Favorite Things, Show and Share.

Marshmallow-Topped Sweet Potato Casserole

Marshmallow Topped Sweet Potato Casserole @ NancyC

I made this sweet potatoes casserole this past Thanksgiving and Christmas. And I was kind of craving it again, even though you normally don’t think of having sweet potato casserole in January! But it’s one of those classic comfort food recipes and we had some cold winter days last week, so I thought, why not? Why not make a sweet potato casserole in January? Besides, it’s such an easy side dish to put together!

I used a little more sweet potatoes and made this casserole in a 9 x 9″ pan, slightly smaller than the 12 x 8″ pan the original recipe from Pillsbury said to use. I don’t have a 12 x 8″ pan, and a 13 x 9″ pan is too big for this. So that’s why I used 9 x 9.” It work out fine, although I’d probably use a 12 x 8″ pan for this casserole if I had one. Using two 29-ounce cans of sweet potatoes might seem like a lot, but it’s really not that much when you drain and empty them out of the can. They fill up a 9 x 9″ pan quite nicely, and in a 12 x 8″ pan, you have a little more room to spare to nicely tuck in all those marshmallows!


Makes a 9 x 9″  or 12 x 8″ pan

  • 2 (29-ounce) cans sweet potatoes, drained
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 teaspoon salt
  • 15 to 16 large marshmallows (or use an equivalent amount of miniature marshmallows)

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease or spray a 9 x 9″ pan or baking dish (or use a 12 x 8″ size) with nonstick cooking spray.

Spoon sweet potatoes into your greased baking dish. Pour melted butter over potatoes. Sprinkle with brown sugar and salt, then top with marshmallows.

Bake at 350˚F for 20 to 25 minutes or until potatoes are completely heated and marshmallows are lightly browned.

I think my marshmallows got a little more browned than they should have. Next time I make these, I need to remember to lower my oven rack a notch below the middle and see if that helps keep them from browning so much–or maybe I could cover the casserole with foil the last ten minutes of baking. Any other ideas?

I really love the way the butter and brown sugar blend and give the sweet potatoes an almost caramely coating! And of course the melty marshmallows are the perfect topping! If you are a sweet potato casserole fan, then you may have already made something similar to this recipe. But if you haven’t, you’ll want to try it! Don’t feel like you need to wait till next Thanksgiving!🙂

So are you a sweet potato fan?

Linked to Fiesta Friday, Wow Me Wednesday, Whimsy Wednesday, Create It Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Thursday Favorite Things.

Onion Roasted Potatoes @ NancyC

Onion-Roasted Potatoes

Onion Roasted Potatoes @ NancyC

This is a super-easy recipe I found a while back on the box of a Lipton® Onion Soup package. It’s so good! And I also like it because you don’t have to peel the potatoes–just leave those skins on and cut them into chunks! This is a very versatile side dish–you can serve these potatoes at breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

Many friends have asked me for this recipe over the years, and I posted it several years ago but didn’t have a very good photo of it– so this is a re-post of the recipe with a new photo. I also added suggestions on other ingredients you can add to these potatoes if you want.

ONION-ROASTED POTATOES adapted from Lipton®

Makes 4 servings

  • 1 envelope onion soup mix
  • 2 lbs. of potatoes (about 4 medium or 3 large), cut into large chunks
  • Optional: 1/3  to 1/2 cup finely chopped green or red bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup non-GMO canola or light olive oil

Preheat oven to 425˚F. Add all ingredients in a gallon-size plastic ziploc-type bag. Seal bag and shake until all the potato chunks are evenly coated with the oil/onion soup mixture. Then put potatoes in a 13 x 9″ baking or roasting pan and discard the bag. Bake, stirring occasionally, 35 minutes or until potatoes are tender and golden brown.

FOR BREAKFAST OR BRUNCH: These potatoes are great served with a breakfast casserole and fruit salad for a filling breakfast or brunch. After roasting them, you could add 1/3 cup of finely chopped fresh chives and/or mix in some crumbled bacon if you want to make the potatoes a little fancier.

FOR LUNCH AND DINNER:  For lunch, these potatoes are great with just about any hot sandwich that you would serve french fries with–and they’re probably healthier than fries. It’s a great potato side dish for dinner, too. If you have cheese-lovers in your family, you could sprinkle some cheddar cheese on the potatoes after they’re done roasting, and pop them back in the oven for a few minutes, just to melt the cheese a little. Yum!

These potatoes get eaten up pretty quickly, so you may want to think about making a double batch in a larger baking pan if you’re cooking for more than 4 people.

Hope you enjoy them! Have you made roasted potatoes before?

Linked to Fiesta Friday, Simply Sundays, Nifty Thrifty Sunday, Sunday Features, Create With Joy, Show and Share, Handmade Tuesdays, Tasty Tuesday, Wonderful Wednesday, Wow Me Wednesday, Wow Us Wednesdays, Wake Up Wednesday, Whimsy Wednesday, Inspiration Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Create It Thursday, Thursday Favorite Things, Showcase Your Talent Thursday, Share Your Style, Feathered Nest Friday, Fabulous Foodie Friday.

Three Bean Salad It’s hard to believe summer is almost here! Some days have already been hot and humid–too warm to cook or bake. So that’s when I start thinking of recipes to make like Three Bean Salad. It doesn’t require any cooking at all and is super-easy to make. It’s a great summer side dish for lunch or dinner and perfect for picnics. I decided to try sweetening my version with honey instead of white sugar and that worked out well. You need to make this salad at least 4 hours before you serve it, to give the salad time to marinate…and this is one of those recipes that tastes better the longer it marinates. So making it the night before you serve it works out great, too.

THREE BEAN SALAD by NancyC Makes about 8 servings

  • 1 (15-ounce) can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can green beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans (also called chickpeas), drained and rinsed
  • 4 green onions, finely chopped (chop both the green stems and the white onion tip)–or you can substitute 1 medium chopped red onion
  • 1 medium red or green bell pepper, chopped
  • Optional: 1 to 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 to 4 Tablespoons honey, depending on how sweet you want it (or substitute 1/2 cup white sugar)
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

In large bowl, add drained and rinsed beans, then add the chopped green onions and bell pepper; toss all ingredients together with a large spoon. In another bowl or a jar with a tight-fitting lid, add the vinegar, oil, honey, mustard powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper; whisk together or, if using a jar with lid, shake ingredients together well. Pour this dressing mixture over the bean salad mixture, tossing gently to coat everything well. Chill in your refrigerator for 4 hours or overnight before serving (the taste gets better the longer it marinates). Stir and toss mixture several times as it is marinating. Toss mixture once more right before serving.

Salads like this are great for summer! I really like making no-bake recipes when it’s warm outside. What easy warm-weather recipes do you like to make? Linked to Fiesta Friday, Inspire Me Monday.


Green Pistachio Smoothie

ncGreenPistachSmthienm Because of St. Patrick’s Day, I’ve been seeing lots of green when it comes to recipes the last few weeks! A lot of them have pistachios as an ingredient, and I love pistachios! So I thought I’d try them in a smoothie. A green smoothie, of course, with a healthy blend of milk, yogurt, honey, frozen banana, baby spinach leaves, and pistachios. It’s a lightly sweet, creamy smoothie that doesn’t taste super-spinachy. If you’re put off by green smoothies, you might want to give this one a try–it has less of a veggie taste than others I’ve had. You do have to do a wee bit of planning ahead to make this by putting a banana (or half of a banana) in the freezer the night before you make it, but otherwise this is super quick and easy to make!

GREEN PISTACHIO SMOOTHIE by NancyC Makes 1 (10-ounce)  serving

  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup low-fat milk (or use soy milk; use 1/3 cup if you want a thicker smoothie)
  • 1/3 cup plain or vanilla Greek yogurt (or use soy yogurt)
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 medium frozen banana, broken into chunks
  • 1/2 cup well-packed baby spinach leaves
  • 2 Tablespoons coarsely chopped pistachios (plus a little more for sprinkling on top)

In a high-speed blender or food processor, add all ingredients and blend until smooth and creamy. Pour into a glass, top with a light sprinkling of pistachios, and serve. Makes about 10 ounces.

Have you made any green smoothies? Do you have a favorite recipe for one? Hope you are having a Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Linked to Let’s Get Real Friday, Inspire Me Monday, Sunday Showcase, Full Plate Thursday.


Texas Caviar


The Super Bowl is just about here and if you’re planning on watching the game, you’re probably deciding on what kind of snacks you want to make. If you’re still looking for ideas, this Texas Caviar is a great recipe to try! Some people also call this Cowboy Caviar. I’ve seen lots of variations on this dip and decided to come up with my own version. Most recipes you’ll see have black beans, black-eyed peas or pinto beans, corn, tomatoes, bell pepper, and onion. I like adding chopped green chiles and avocado to mine. And olives–don’t forget the olives! It’s actually quite a healthy mix of veggies and beans. I used canned diced tomatoes, but you can dice up some fresh ones, and you can use fresh or frozen corn instead of canned. And it tastes great! Serve it with those scoop-style chips and enjoy every bite!


Makes 6-8 servings

  • 1 small red onion (or 1/2 large), finely chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 to 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained (or use an equivalent amount of fresh tomatoes)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15-ounce can black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained (or use a 10-ounce bag of frozen corn, thawed)
  • 1/2 cup sliced black olives (I used sliced Kalamata olives)
  • 1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles (or use fresh)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper, or to taste
  • 2/3 cup Italian salad dressing (regular or light)
  • 1 large avocado, cut into small chunks
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Mix all ingredients, except for the Italian salad dressing, cilantro, and avocado in a large bowl, blending so all ingredients are distributed evenly.

Add the Italian dressing; toss well so all ingredients are coated with dressing.

Cover and chill in the refrigerator for about 2 hours. Then toss with chopped fresh cilantro and avocado.

Put mixture into a large serving bowl or several smaller bowls and serve with tortilla chips.

When it comes to watching the Super Bowl, I have to admit I actually enjoy the commercials the most! I like going to sports games, but watching them on TV just doesn’t hold my interest. What do you like best–the game or the commercials?

Linked to Inspire Me Monday at Create with Joy.


Cheesy Green Bean Casserole

ncChsyGrBnCass2nm We all know and love that Green Bean Casserole, don’t we? It’s so good, I’m not sure why I only make it at the holidays–there’s no reason why you couldn’t make it any time of the year, right? But it’s especially nice at times like Thanksgiving and Christmas, when it’s cold outside and everyone is wanting to include warm and comforting side dishes in their holiday feast. There are many variations of this recipe, and when I make mine, I always add cheese, sour cream, and Half & Half (light cream) to make it extra cheesy and creamy. I love this casserole with cheese added in, and if you’re a cheese-lover, I think you will too! So here’s my version of this classic side dish and I hope you enjoy it!

CHEESY GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE by NancyC, adapted from French’s Makes a 9 x 13″ pan

  • 2 (10 3/4-oz.) cans condensed cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
  • 1/2 cup Half & Half (light cream) or milk
  • 1/4 cup sour cream (regular or light)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder (or substitute garlic powder)
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 4 (14.5-ounce) cans green beans (or substitute 7 1/2 cups cooked cut fresh green beans or frozen and thawed green beans)
  • 1 (4-ounce) can sliced mushrooms (optional)
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 2/3 cups (or 2 2.8-oz. cans) French Fried Onions, divided

Preheat oven to 350˚F. In large bowl mix soup, Half & Half (or milk), sour cream, black pepper, onion powder, and soy sauce. Stir in green beans, mushrooms (if using), cheese, and 1 1/3 cups (or 1 2.8-oz. can) French Fried Onions (save the other can for sprinkling on top after baking). Spoon mixture into a 9 x 13″ pan or 3-qt. baking dish. Bake at 350˚F for 27 to 30 minutes or until hot and bubbling at edges. Remove from oven, lightly stir the mixture in the pan or baking dish, then top with remaining 1 1/3 cups onions (or the second 2.8-oz. can). Bake an additional 5 minutes until onions are golden.

ncChsyGrBnCass1nm Do you make Green Bean Casserole for your holiday meals? With or without cheese? And what other side dishes do you like to serve?

Linked to Fiesta Friday at The Novice Gardener,  I’m Lovin’ It at Tidy Mom, and Inspire Me Monday at Create with Joy.


Aunt Bee’s Sour Cream and Cheese Potatoes


I love potatoes…especially cheesy potatoes! When I found this recipe at Recipe Lion, I knew I had to try it out! You can’t have too many cheesy potato recipes and this one, with lots of cheddar cheese and sour cream mixed in, sounded very cheesy and creamy–just the way I like my potatoes!🙂

The original recipe says to peel the potatoes after boiling them, but after trying that, I think it might be easier to peel them before boiling. Or just leave the skins on. I started peeling some of the potatoes after they were boiled, then decided to leave the skins on the rest of them to save time. Some of the peeling will come off as you’re grating the potatoes, too.

As you’re mixing the grated potatoes, cheese, and sour cream, be sure to use an extra-large bowl so it will be easier to mix (you might also want to add in real bacon bits or pieces–I didn’t think about adding the bacon in until after I had made these, so that’s why you’re not seeing any bacon in the photo). The mixture will be quite thick, so you’ll need to spoon it into your pan or baking dish. I really loved the way these potatoes turned out–how could they not be good with all that cheese and sour cream? When you’re in the mood for some comfort food, you’ll need to try these potatoes out!

AUNT BEE’S SOUR CREAM AND CHEESE POTATOES slightly adapted from RecipeLion

Makes a 9 x 13″ pan 

  • 4 pounds red potatoes
  • 4 cups shredded or grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • 24 ounces light sour cream
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • optional: stir in some real bacon bits or pieces, about 1/2 to 2/3 cup
  • optional: 1 1/2 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives, for garnish

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease a 9 x 13″ pan or baking dish; set aside.

Boil potatoes in a large pot until fork-tender. Allow potatoes to cool, then peel (or you can peel before boiling or just leave the skins on; whatever is easiest for you). Using the large holes on a grater, shred the potatoes.

Place potatoes in an extra-large bowl. Stir in the cheese and sour cream (also stir in bacon bits or pieces, if using). Add salt and pepper to taste.

Spoon potato mixture into a greased baking dish or 9 x 13″ pan and bake, uncovered, at 350˚F for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle fresh chives on top, if desired, then serve.


It’s really hard to stop eating these super-cheesy, super-creamy potatoes-you keep on wanting to go back for more! Keep this in mind as a side dish for the holidays–I’m sure everyone would love it! Do you have a favorite potato side dish recipe?


Deviled Egg Potato Salad

ncDevEggPotatoSalad1Two of my favorite summer foods are deviled eggs and potato salad. So why not put them together? I decided to try that out, and found that this Deviled Egg Potato Salad is soooo good! The deviled egg mixture is so yummy with a sprinkling of paprika on top and the potato salad is a creamy mustard-style salad that goes perfectly with the taste of the deviled eggs on top. And there are some eggs mixed into the potato salad too, giving you lots of delicious deviled egg flavor.

justMayoI tried a new mayonnaise in this recipe which was really good–JUST MAYO from Hampton Creek, a company on a mission to make healthier food affordable. This mayonnaise is made with healthy ingredients like non-GMO expeller pressed canola oil, filtered water, lemon juice, white vinegar, and a touch of organic sugar, pea protein, and spices. So it’s great for people with soy and egg allergies, since it’s egg-free. But you’d never know–it has such a rich taste and creamy texture. And of course it is cholesterol-free too. This mayo also comes in several savory flavors: Chipotle, Sriracha, and Garlic. You can visit the Hampton Creek site to find where it’s available at stores near you.

I’m having a giveaway which includes samples of Hampton Creek Just Mayo, Just Mayo Sriracha, and Just Mayo Garlic, plus a handy little hat with the Hampton Creek logo on it. See the end of the post for details on the giveaway!

Going back to the Deviled Egg Potato Salad, this would be a great dish to make over Labor Day weekend, especially if you are planning on having a potluck or picnic! This dish is definitely not cholesterol-free like the Just Mayo is, but at least this mayo doesn’t add any additional cholesterol, for those of you who have to watch that. And if you just want to make a basic egg-free potato salad, follow the directions for the POTATO SALAD part of this recipe, leaving the hard-boiled eggs out.

DEVILED EGG POTATO SALAD by NancyC, adapted from CDKitchen

Makes about 10 servings


  • 6 hard-boiled eggs, peeled (you will need a total of 9 hard-boiled eggs; see the rest of the recipe below)
  • 1 teaspoon minced dill pickle (or you can substitute sweet pickles)
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 2 Tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 dash salt


  • 1/2 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 1/3 cup yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup shredded or finely chopped dill pickles (or you can substitute sweet pickles)
  • 1/2 Tablespoon dill pickle juice
  • 1 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 6 cups boiled potatoes (peeled or unpeeled) and cubed
  • 3 hard-boiled eggs, finely chopped
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon paprika

Cut 6 of the 9 boiled eggs in half; remove yolk (save the other 3 eggs for the potato salad mixture). Place yolks in medium bowl and mix with pickles, mustards, mayonnaise, and salt; stuff the 6 eggs with the yolk mixture and set aside.

In large bowl, blend the onion, mustards, salt, pickles, pickle juice, and mayonnaise. Then stir in the cubed boiled potatoes, and add in the remaining 3 hard boiled eggs, finely chopped, last.

Spoon mixture into large serving bowl (or keep in your large mixing bowl if you want to serve the salad from that). Top with paprika, sprinkling evenly over the salad, and arrange deviled eggs around the top of the salad in a circle for garnish (you can top the deviled eggs with a little paprika too, if you want).

ncmayogiveawyGIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED–Congratulations to Cheri, who made comment #8, which was chosen randomly as the winner!

NOW FOR THE GIVEAWAY: If you’d like to win three (8-ounce) containers of JUST MAYO (one each of Regular, Garlic, and Sriracha flavors) plus a black cap with the Hampton Creek logo, leave a comment on this blog post between now and Wednesday evening, August 27, at 8 p.m. (CST). The random drawing will be made from the comments on this post only! The winner will be chosen randomly via and announced later on Wednesday evening, August 27 on this post. Winner will be notified via email (if winner does not respond in 3 days, I’ll do another drawing). Giveaway is limited to readers in the Continental U.S. and Canada.

First Entry: Leave a comment on this post–it would be great to hear if you are a deviled egg or potato salad fan!

One Bonus Entry: If you are a new or existing follower or subscriber, you may leave one extra comment telling me the way (or ways) you follow.

Note: if your comment doesn’t show up right away, it just means I haven’t had a chance to approve your comment yet–I approve all comments because of spam comments that sometimes come through!


Chilled Cucumber Soup


Chilled soups are perfect for summer! And if you like cucumbers, you’ll want to try this one! It has Greek yogurt, green onions, fresh dill, and parsley in it. Some lemon juice and salt give the flavor a little punch and I also added some garlic powder to the original recipe. The croutons on top are a nice touch, too! It’s a great summery soup to serve for a light lunch or dinner.

CHILLED CUCUMBER SOUP by NancyC, slightly adapted from Country Living

Makes 6 servings, 135 calories each

  • 2 cups plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 English cucumbers, peeled, diced, and divided (divide amount in half to add in recipe at different times)
  • 4 green onions, sliced and divided (divide amount in half to add in recipe at different times)
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 4 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, or a little more, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
  • a bag of your favorite croutons
  • more chopped fresh dill for garnish

In a large bowl, combine yogurt and vegetable broth, blending well; set aside.

In a food processor, puree 1 peeled, diced English cucumber, 2 sliced green onions, chopped fresh dill, and chopped fresh parsley. Add this cucumber mixture, along with the lemon juice and salt, to the yogurt mixture in the large bowl; whisk to combine. (Note: if you do not have a food processor, you can put the above ingredients in a blender and puree them all together–your blender will be pretty full, so you may want to blend it in 2 batches; after blending, pour mixture back into your large bowl).

Stir in the other peeled, diced English cucumber and the other 2 diced sliced green onions, mixing well to evenly distribute ingredients. Refrigerate for 1 hour, then serve in bowls and garnish with chopped fresh dill and croutons.

Light summer meals like this are perfect for those really hot days. You can use regular cucumbers in this recipe, too, if you’re growing them in your garden–it would be a great way to use them! I would think maybe 4-6 small or 3-4 medium cukes would be equivalent to 2 English cucumbers–that’s just an estimate!

What types of lighter foods do you like to eat during the summer?