Tag Archives: dips

eggplant parm dip in cast iron next to toasted bread

This Vegetarian, Gluten-Free Eggplant Parm Dip is the Perfect Dish for Date Night at Home

Elevate your next date night at home with a crunchy take on the classic eggplant parm. Warm, comforting, cheesy and crispy, our Dining In dip recipe — inspired by the eggplant parm at 416 Snack Bar in Toronto — has everything you love about the original dish, now with a dippable twist! Made by layering tomato sauce, roasted eggplant, mozzarella cheese, ricotta, Parmesan and a crispy quinoa topping, this simple, yet decadent dish is the ultimate oven-to-table meal served family-style with toasted bread for easy scooping.

eggplant parm dip in cast iron next to toasted bread

Eggplant Parm Dip

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6

Ingredients:

¾ cup quinoa
Sea salt
2 cans (746 ml) San Marzano tomatoes, crushed
2 cloves garlic, smashed
½ tsp red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp fresh chopped basil, plush additional for serving
1 large eggplant, cubed
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup freshly grated mozzarella cheese
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving
3 Tbsp butter, divided
6 slices sourdough bread

eggplant parm dip ingredients on kitchen countertop

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 425°F.

2. Rinse quinoa under cold water. Add to a small pot with 1 ½ cups water and lightly season with a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until cooked through and water is absorbed.

roasted quinoa on baking tray

3. While the quinoa is cooking, you can start the tomato sauce: pour tomatoes into a saucepan. Bring to a boil on high heat, then add garlic and red pepper flakes. Reduce heat to medium low and add basil. Cook for 15 minutes, then season with salt to taste and set aside.

4. In a large bowl, toss eggplant with 2 Tbsp olive oil and ½ tsp of sea salt. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet.

Related: Romantic Date Night Recipes to Make at Home

5. Toss cooked quinoa with 1 Tbsp of olive oil and a pinch of salt. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and spread into an even layer. Place both the eggplant and quinoa in the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until the eggplant is caramelized and the quinoa is lightly browned and crispy. Set aside and lower oven temperature to 375°F.

6. Spread tomato sauce in the base of a 12-inch cast iron skillet or 9-inch square baking dish. Layer with eggplant and top with dollops of ricotta cheese. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese overtop, leaving the ricotta peeking through. Finish with a handful of Parmesan and the crispy quinoa. Place in the oven to bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the mozzarella is melted, ricotta is just turning golden and quinoa is crisp.

eggplant parm dip ingredients deconstructed on kitchen countertop

7. While the eggplant parm dip is baking, heat a skillet on medium and melt 1 Tbsp of butter. Lay 2 slices of bread in the pan and fry until golden brown on both sides. Set aside on a wire rack and repeat process with remaining bread slices. Cut bread in halves or quarters.

8. Before serving, finish with a sprinkling of additional basil and Parmesan. Place the dip family-style in the middle of the table with bread tucked in the sides of the pan and a spoon for serving.

eggplant parm dip in cast iron

Here are more gooey, melty ways to get your cheese fix.

Watch the how-to video here:


One Humble Can of Black Beans, Six Different Meals to Remember

With summer in full swing, grab a can of black beans from your pantry and make these six super simple recipes for your next barbecue night. Black beans are loaded with nutrients and are oh-so versatile. From grilled black bean burgers to a seasonal black bean salad, I am sharing a variety of recipes you can create with a humble can of beans. Just be sure to rinse and drain the can of beans before using to remove any excess liquid or sodium. OK — here we go!

Related: One Humble Can of Chickpeas, Six Different Meals to Remember

Spicy Black Bean Nachos
Nachos are the ultimate snack food: you can keep them as simple as you’d like or load them up with ingredients and flavour. Next time you whip up a skillet of nachos, try sprinkling them with smoked cheddar cheese, diced corn, black beans, taco seasoned ground meat (optional) and sliced jalapeños. Don’t forget to serve them with a side of salsa, guacamole and/or sour cream for dipping.

Black Beans and Rice
Rice is a staple side dish for just about any meal, but instead of serving plain white rice, why don’t we jazz it up a little bit? Mix steamed rice with black beans, olive oil, grated garlic, chopped cilantro and fresh lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. This will pair wonderfully with grilled chicken, pork or beef.

Fried Egg With Black Beans and Toast
This quick toast is one of my go-to recipes for breakfast or an afternoon snack. A fried egg served with pureed black beans, diced tomatoes and cilantro. Serve over a taco shell or slice of toast.

Related: The Tastiest Things You Can Put on Toast (That Isn’t Avocado)

Black Bean and Corn Salad
Nothing says barbecue season like a colourful bean salad. It can be made a day ahead of time and travels really well for a picnic in the park. This one features black beans as the base with diced tomatoes, diced corn, minced red onion, grated garlic, olive oil and freshly squeezed lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Black Bean Burger
In my house, burgers are on high rotation during the summer months. If you are looking to reduce your meat intake, turn a can of black beans into homemade veggie burgers! You can mash just about any flavour into these burgers. Start by sautéing minced garlic, onion and peppers until softened. Add them to a food processor with a can of black beans, cup of panko bread crumbs, two eggs, barbecue sauce, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. For extra flavour, add paprika, cumin and a pinch of cayenne. Pulse until mixture comes together and shape into patties. Chill for 30 minutes to firm before pan frying or grilling.

Related: These Vegan Burger Recipes are Perfect for Grilling Season

Black Bean Dip
Turn a can of black beans into a flavourful summer dip to serve with tortilla chips. To make, simply blend a can of black beans with minced garlic, olive oil, jalapeño (seeds removed), cumin, fresh lime juice, salt and pepper. Add a splash of water until desired consistency is reached. Garnish with tomato, mango or corn salsa if desired.

Want to cook with more pantry staples? These canned salmon recipes and tortilla recipes might do the trick!

This Loaded Hummus is Changing the Dip Game for Good

Carrots and hummus are a classic snack, but why not turn everyone’s favourite Middle Eastern dip into a meal!  We’ve loaded up our creamy hummus with the works to bring you an inspired meal that is visually stunning and devour-worthy.  This is a party and crowd-pleasing kind of dish, but it can also double as a simple weeknight dinner.  We’ve kept it vegetarian, but feel free to get creative and top it with homemade chicken shawarma, if you fancy.  Serve with warmed pita and thoroughly enjoy every bite.

Loaded Hummus Recipe

Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 90 minutes
Servings: 4-6

Ingredients:

Hummus:
3 cups cooked chickpeas
3/4 cup tahini
2 garlic cloves
1/3 cup lemon juice
3/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup cold water

Hard Boiled Eggs:
4 eggs
Water

Tabouli Salad:
2 cups loosely packed parsley leaves, chopped finely
1 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
1 1/2 cups diced cucumber
2 stalks of green onions, sliced finely
1/2 lemon, juiced
Pinch of sea salt and pepper

Roasted Veggies:
1/2 cauliflower head, chopped into large florets
2 carrots, peeled and sliced in thick matchsticks, about 2 inches in length
2-3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp granulated garlic powder
1/4 tsp sea salt and pinch of pepper

Steamy Beets:
3 beets, peeled and sliced into wedges
2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp sea salt and pinch of pepper

Additional Toppings:
1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and halved
1/4 cup feta, crumbled
2 Tbsp pine nuts, toasted
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, drizzled on top
1/2 tsp za’atar, sprinkled on top

Pita of choice to serve, warmed or toasted

Directions:

Hummus:
1. Place chickpeas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, sea salt in the food processor and blitz until pureed.
2. While the food processor is still running, gradually add water, about 2 Tbsp at a time, until a really creamy consistency starts to form.
3. If you would like your hummus to be even creamier, add more water.

Hard Boiled Eggs:
1. Place the eggs in a small pot and cover them fully with water, bring to a boil and continue the rolling boil for 1 minute.
2. Remove from the heat, cover the pot and let sit for 12 minutes.
3. Run the eggs under cold water and let cool completely before peeling.
4. Once peeled, slice two eggs into wedges and the other two into thick one-inch circles.

Tabouli Salad:
1. Prep all of the veggies and mix together in a bowl, pour lemon juice over and season with sea salt and pepper. Stir to fully combine.

Roasted Veggies:
1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF . Prep the veggies, place them in a bowl, add in olive oil, granulated garlic powder, sea salt and pepper. Mix to combine.
2. Arrange the veggies on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Don’t overcrowd the sheets, to ensure the veggies get nice and crisp.
3. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes until the veggies brown slightly.

*The world is your oyster here, so feel free to also roast up eggplant, zucchini, red pepper and mushrooms, if you desire.

Steamy Beets:
1. Prep the beets and place them into a pot, add enough water so the beets are slightly covered but not submerged, turn the heat to medium-low. Cover the pot and allow to steam for 15 minutes, until tender.
2. Pour apple cider vinegar over the beets and season with sea salt and pepper.

Assembly:
1. Once the hummus is ready, spoon it onto a platter or in a large bowl.
2. You can get as creative as you like here. You can assemble the toppings in layers, first with the roasted veggies, then the steamy beets, the tabouli on top of that, the hard-boiled eggs and then the additional toppings. You can also place each topping in little piles, rather than mixed together. We personally love getting a bite of all the ingredients, so we prefer to assemble in layers.
3. Serve with warmed pita and enjoy!

Craving more delicious good-for-you recipes? Here are 25 Healthy Weeknight Meals When You Have No Time.

Jalapeno Popper Dip Recipe copy

Jalapeño Popper Dip is Your Favourite New Make-Ahead Appetizer

Everything you love in a jalapeño popper is whirred into a cheesy, party-perfect dip. Spicy jalapeños, crispy bacon, cream cheese and a crunchy topping come together for a delicious, ultra-indulgent dip. Serve this up with veggies and tortilla chips at your next party for a crowd-pleasing riff on the new-classic appetizer.

Jalapeno Popper Dip

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Serves: 8 to 10

Ingredients: 
6 strips bacon
2 (250 g) pkgs cream cheese, softened
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
4 jalapeños, seeded and finely diced
3 green onions, minced
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
Sliced veggies or tortilla chips for serving

Dip prechop

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.

2. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook bacon, turning occasionally, until crispy, about 10 min. Remove bacon to a paper-towel lined plate and reserve 2 Tbsp bacon grease in a medium heat-safe bowl. Once bacon is cool, chop or crumble into pieces.
3. In a large bowl, mix cream cheese until smooth. Gradually mix in mayonnaise until fully combined. To cream cheese and mayonnaise, add Cheddar, jalapenos, green onions and bacon pieces and mix to combine. Spread cream cheese mixture evenly into a 9-inch round ovenproof dish.

Jalapeno Popper Dip Recipe

4. Stir panko into reserved bacon grease and sprinkle over cream cheese mixture. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until bubbling at the sides. Serve warm with tortilla chips or veggies for dipping.

Make-Ahead: You can make this dip ahead of time (without the panko topping, and prior to baking) and store covered in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Warm refrigerated bacon renderings in the microwave until liquefied and stir in panko. Sprinkle cream cheese mixture with panko mixture and bake, adding 5 minutes to the cooking time (40 to 45 minutes instead of 35 to 40 minutes).

Nothing gets a crowd going like a good dip, so here are over 25 party-perfect options to dive into.

11 Super Quick Recipes for Gourmet Condiments

Summer commands big, bold flavour with minimal effort. Who wants to be slaving in the kitchen when the pool is shimmering and the lawn chairs are vacant?  Enter: super-condiments!  A few quick flavour-boosters amp up the contents of your jars and squeeze bottles, turning them into magical, mouth-watering delights.

Here’s how you can elevate your everyday condiments quickly, so you can get right back to the pool!

condiments

Miso-Mayonnaise: Stir 2 Tbsp of miso into 1/2 cup of mayonnaise for a salty umami boost.

Avocado-Corn Salsa: Doctor up 1 cup of store-bought salsa with a chopped ripe avocado and 1/2 cup of frozen corn.  

5-Spice Ketchup: Add 1 tsp of 5-spice powder, 1 tsp finely grated ginger, and a Tbsp of soy sauce to 1/2 cup of ketchup for a Chinese twist.

Not-So-Secret Sauce: Stir 2 Tbsp each of ketchup and relish into 1 cup of mayonnaise, along with a tsp each of onion powder and garlic powder.

Currynnaise: Stir 1 tsp of curry powder, Indian curry paste, or garam masala into 1/2 cup jarred mayonnaise, then add about 1-2 tsp of freshly squeezed lemon and 1 Tbsp of minced chives.  

Zesty Horseradish Mustard: Stir 1 Tbsp (or more, if you’re brave) of the pungent root into 1/2 cup prepared mustard to take your sausages to the next level.

Caramelized Onion Butter: Mix equal parts caramelized onions (let your slow cooker do the work) and softened butter, whipped together in a small blender or food processor.  

Sriracha Mayo: Add a bit of the hot sauce to mayo a squirt at a time to reach your desired spiciness.

Herb and Garlic Butter: Stir a clove of minced garlic and 2 Tbsp of minced fresh herbs of your choice (tarragon, rosemary, basil, chives or oregano) into 1/2 cup of softened butter.  

Spicy Chipotle Ketchup: Boost 1/2 cup of ordinary ketchup with 1-2 tsp of dried chipotle powder or the adobo sauce that comes in canned chipotles. Taste and add more for a greater kick!

Tarragon Cream Mustard: Mix 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard into 1/2 cup sour cream, and stir in 1 Tbsp minced fresh tarragon.  

Looking for something to put these sauces on? Try one of our Our 50 Most Popular Burger Recipes.

A Baked Goat Cheese and Spinach Dip That Can’t Be Beat

By Jo-Anna Rooney

Winters in Calgary are long and very cold, but we try to embrace the season by enjoying all it has to offer. This means that during those long winter months our family can often be found outdoors, taking part in great Canadian activities like pond hockey, snowshoeing, skiing and tobogganing.

After all of the fun, we look forward to heading indoors to gather around a crackling fire and enjoy warm drinks and comforting eats. There is just nothing like filling your belly with hearty, homemade food on a cold, wintery day. This Baked Goat Cheese and Bacon Spinach Dip is perfect for such an occasion! I like to prepare it ahead of time, and have it ready to go as soon as we come inside. Serve it bubbling hot with loads of crusty bread and your favourite red wine.

Baked Goat Cheese and Bacon Spinach Dip, Courtesy of Jo-Anna Rooney, aprettylifeinthesuburbs.com, Calgary

This make-ahead treat is the perfect reward after a day of winter fun.

BakedGoatCheeseBaconSpinachDip

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time:
30 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients
2 Tbsp (30 mL) olive oil
8 oz (225 g) fresh spinach, chopped
1 onion, diced
1–2 cloves garlic, minced
5 oz (140 g) goat cheese
¾ cup (175 mL) sour cream
¼ cup (50 mL) chopped marinated artichoke hearts
8 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
salt to taste
pepper to taste
crusty bread or crackers for dipping

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
2. In skillet heat olive oil over medium-low heat. Sauté spinach, onion and garlic until onion is translucent and spinach is wilted. Remove from heat.
3. Stir in the goat cheese, sour cream, artichoke hearts and bacon. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
4. Scrape mixture into ovenproof dish and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until mixture is bubbling.
5. Serve with crusty bread or crackers for dipping.

A Pretty Life in the Suburbs
Jo-Anna is the editor, director, chief, main cook, dishwasher and home decorator on the site A Pretty Life in the Suburbs. She created the site as a way to share her love of a simple home life through uncomplicated home tips and fresh and easy recipes. Her hope is that by spending some time on A Pretty Life in the Suburbs, you are inspired to add some simplicity and deliciousness into your home and life.

Sweet Potato Wedges with Chipotle Dipping Sauce

Sweet potato wedges make a fantastic snack or simple side dish, especially when paired with a tasty sauce for dipping. Sweet potatoes are packed with Vitamin A and fibre, among other health benefits, and their naturally sweet flavour and crispy exterior (once baked) makes them a fan favourite you can feel good about serving your friends and family.

888_Sweet-Potato-Wedges-with-Chipotle-Sauce

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients:
2 medium sweet potatoes, scrubbed clean and cut into wedges
1 tsp canola oil
½ tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp pepper
¼ cup mayonnaise
2 tsp honey
½ tsp cumin
1 tsp adobo
1 tsp minced chipotle

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 425°F with a baking sheet in the centre of the oven.
2. In a bowl, gently toss sweet potato with oil, salt and pepper. Arrange sweet potato wedges in a single layer on the preheated baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, turning once midway through until browned on all sides.
3. Meanwhile, whisk together mayonnaise, honey, cumin, adobo and chipotle. Serve wedges alongside chipotle dip.

amanda riva Amanda Riva is the host of The Hot Plate, a free online cooking show dedicated to inspiring culinary confidence in new cooks. The Hot Plate also offers regular cooking tips and advice, how-tos, and information on seasonal ingredients. Amanda Riva is part of the Blog Network family.

Zucchini and Feta Fritters with Yogurt Dip

This week, The Hot Plate food stylist Jamie Goodman took the lead in sharing one of her favourite recipes, Zucchini Feta Fritters with Yogurt Dip.

zucchini-fritters-with-yogurt-dip

Zucchini and Feta Fritters with Yogurt Dip

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4 to 6

Ingredients for Yogurt Dipping Sauce:
3/4 cup (175 mL) Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons (30 mL) water (approx.)
1 tablespoon (15 mL) Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon (15 mL) fresh finely chopped parsley
1 tablespoon (15 mL) fresh finely chopped dill
1 tablespoon (15 mL) lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt and pepper, to taste

Ingredients for Zucchini Fritters:
2 lbs (1 kg) zucchini, coarsely grated
1 tablespoon (15 mL) kosher salt
1 large red onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 cup (175 mL) crumbled feta
1/4 cup (60 mL) finely chopped parsley
1/4 cup (60 mL) finely chopped dill
2 teaspooons (10 mL) ground cumin
1 egg, beaten
Salt and pepper, to taste
Flour
Canola Oil

Directions for Yogurt Dipping Sauce:

  1. Add yogurt, water, mustard, parsley, dill, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper. Thin with 1 teaspoon (5 mL) water if needed.

Directions for Zucchini Fritters:

  1. Sprinkle grated zucchini with kosher salt. Transfer to colander and let stand for 1 hour. Squeeze out excess moisture. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in small skillet set over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook, stirring, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until translucent and softened. Cool completely.
  2. In a large bowl, combine zucchini, onion mixture, feta, parsley, dill, cumin, egg, salt and pepper. The mixture will be soft and sticky. Shape heaping tablespoons of zucchini mixture into a patty. Dredge in flour. Transfer to baking tray lined with parchment.
  3. Pour enough oil to come about 1-inch (2.5 cm) up the sides of the pan. Heat set over medium-high heat. Shallow fry patties in batches, for 1 to 2 minutes per side or until golden brown all over. Drain on paper towel. Serve with Yogurt Dipping Sauce.

Test Kitchen Notes: If desired, fry fritters in olive oil for added flavour.

amanda riva Amanda Riva is the host of The Hot Plate, a free online cooking show dedicated to inspiring culinary confidence in new cooks. The Hot Plate also offers regular cooking tips and advice, how-tos, and information on seasonal ingredients. 

Amanda Riva is part of the Lifestyle Blog Network family.

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