Category Archives: Side Dishes

Lemon Couscous

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This is a perfect side dish for Spring and Summer!  It’s bright and light and full of flavor.

1 cup chicken broth
2 TBSP lemon juice
1 TBSP lemon zest
1 TBSP butter
1/4 tsp salt
1 TBSP dried parsley
2/3 cup couscous

Add the 1st 6 ingredients together in a saucepan, bring to a boil. Add the couscous, stir to coat completely. Cover and remove from heat, let couscous sit for 5 mins. Fluff with a fork and enjoy!  Perfect with chicken or fish.

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Creamed Spinach

If you’re looking for something new to serve on the side for Thanksgiving, try this one on! It’s uber creamy and yummy!!

Creamed Spinach

2 pkgs frozen spinach, thawed
3 TBSP butter
1/2 cup finely chopped shallots
1 tsp minced garlic
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup shredded cheese (Gruyere is best)

Melt the butter in medium sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, until soft and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach and cook, stirring, just until the liquid is released. Add the cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg, and cook until the cream is reduced by half, about 4 minutes. Place entire mixture in a baking dish and cover with shredded Gruyere cheese. Bake on 350 for 20 minutes or until cheese is golden and bubbly. Serve immediately. (it’s even awesome on a toasted baguette slice as an appetizer!)

Rice Pilaf

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This is the easiest side dish to add to any dinner and doesn’t include that wild rice that never cooks the same way, you know what I’m talking about…..pilaf shouldn’t be chewy or crunchy, at least in my opinion:)

3 TBSP butter
1/2 cup vermicelli, broken into small pieces
2 TBSP dried onions
1 cup minute rice
1 can chicken with rice soup
1 can chicken broth

Melt the butter on medium heat, in a large skillet and brown the vermicelli.  Add the dried onions and minute rice, let them brown a bit, and then add the soup and chicken broth.  Simmer on low for 15 minutes. Super easy and fast!

Balsamic Glazed Broccoli

2 bunches broccoli, chopped into bite size pieces

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup butter (salted of course)
2 TBSP firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Steam broccoli until crisp tender. (now if your’re in a time crunch…most grocery markets sell steamer bags of fresh broccoli for the microwave, you’ll want two bags for this recipe….or half the sauce recipe)  Place broccoli in a serving bowl; keep warm.
In a small saucepan, cook balsamic vinegar over medium heat until reduced by half. Stir in butter, brown sugar, salt, pepper. Pour over broccoli, tossing gently to coat. (If it’s easier…time wise..make the sauce first, then steam the broccoli) 

How else so we get our kiddos to eat their vegetables??? …..Ummmm…..let me think…. butter and brown sugar of course!!

Creamed Spinach

2 10-oz pkgs frozen spinach
2 TBSP salted butter
1/2 cup finely chopped shallots
1 tsp minced garlic
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup heavy cream

1 cup shredded cheese  (Gruyere I feel is the best for this dish, but Gouda adds a smoky yumminess too!)

Melt the butter in medium sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, until soft and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach and cook, stirring, just until the liquid is released. Add the cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg, and cook until the cream is reduced by half, about 4 minutes. Place entire mixture in a baking dish and cover with shredded cheese. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until cheese is golden and bubbly. Serve immediately.

Great Potatoes

My dear friend Ann introduced me to these…..and thank the heavens she did!!! They should be called….”food you should eat with stretchy pants on”….maybe I should add a new category?……hmmmm……my tummy and kids are huge fans of these….they are creamy, buttery and oh so yummy!

7 med Yukon gold potatoes, boiled with skins on, until done-aka-knife comes out easy

1 can cream of chicken soup
1 16 oz container of sour cream (2 cups)
2 TBSP dried  minced onions
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)    (some people only use 1/2 of a stick……such tragedy should not happen)

1/2 lb cheddar and monterey jack cheeses
panko bread crumbs or crushed corn flakes….some people are particular as to their crunchy topping!

Peel and slice potatoes (3/8″slices)
Heat sour cream, soup, onions and butter into sauce.
Layer in 9×13 pan: potatoes, sauce, cheese …. you should have enough to do 3 layers. If not….no stress….do 2 layers:)  Bake at 350 for 40 minutes. Last 10 minutes sprinkle bread crumbs or crushed corn flakes on top.

FYI: I am not a photographer…at all…but here ya go:

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Ranch Potatoes

8 medium red potatoes
1 cup sour cream
1 cup ranch dressing
1/2 cup cooked and crumbled bacon…I have used 1 cup before…so I will not judge 🙂
2 TBSP dried parsley
1  1/2 cups shredded cheddar
1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs….or crushed corn flakes,  whichever your prefer

Boil potatoes in water for 40 minutes. 1/4 the potatoes, leaving the skins on. Combine all ingredients mix with the potatoes in a 9×13 pan. Place bread crumbs on top and bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes. Makes 10-12 servings.