With July being National Culinary Arts Month, I thought it would be fun to share some recipes that wow without draining your wallet (and without needing to be a trained chef).
Quality Ingredients Take It Up a Notch
No matter what recipe you use, I find that starting with quality, fresh ingredients makes it pop. You don’t have to spend a ton to eat well. We have friends who can make dishes that are absolutely delicious without a lot of prep work. When I ask, they always talk about the ingredients.
I gathered a few of my favorites to help you step up your meals. They’re also easy to use, so I hope they become of your favorite go-to the next time you need to whip up dinner.
Creamy Avocado and Lime Salad Dressing
I admit, I wasn’t excited about salads growing up. They always seemed boring and I drowned them with dressing. Now that I’m older and have picked up some kitchen skills, I’ve learned that they can be made just as you like.
I’m still a fan of dressing, but now I put enough to compliment it, not cover the salad. If you’re looking for a summer dressing that is easy to make, you should try this one.
- 2 tablespoons of lime juice
- 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
- 1 avocado
- 1 garlic clove
- salt and pepper
All you have to do is mix it all in a food processor and you’re done!
Grilled Peppers Stuffed with Cheese
An easy summer time favorite that is tasty and delightful.
- 1 cup ricotta cheese (8 oz)
- 1 cup cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 4 Anaheim or Cubanelle peppers
- 4 baby bell peppers
- 4 small poblano chiles
- Extra-virgin olive oil, for rubbing
To make it just takes a few steps (something I love whenever I have a busy day!) and a grill.
- Light the grill
- Blend the ricotta with the cream cheese and Parmigiano-Reggiano
- Cut the bell peppers and remove the stem and membrane inside
- Stuff the peppers with your cheese mixture
- Rub the peppers with olive oil and place the stuffed peppers on the grill (high heat) until the cheese is hot and the skin blistered
- transfer to plate and serve
Summertime Steak Rub
Nothing says summer fun like a steak off the grill. After experimenting with different marinades and rubs, we found one that comes out great every time.
- 4 tbsp coarse salt
- 1 tbsp course cracked black pepper
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1/2 tbsp granulated garlic
- 1/2 tbsp dried rosemary, lightly crushed
- 1/2 tbsp crushed red chili flakes
- 1/2 tbsp dried thyme
Thoughts on Good Food and Easy Recipes that Save Money
If you have a favorite summertime recipe, please share it below! I’d love to hear how you discovered it.