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Olive, Parmesan, & Garlic Hummus

We LOVE hummus! Do you? We love eating hummus with pita chips or fresh vegetables. We enjoy all kinds of hummus store bought, but there is nothing like homemade hummus! It’s super easy and really worth the little time it takes to make it. Store bought hummus is really convenient when you are in a rush, but if you have a little bit of time you will have to make your own. Trust me!

olive parmesan and garlic hummus_2

When making hummus at home you will need 5 basic ingredients to get started. Lemon juice, Tahini (ground up sesame seeds), olive oil, salt, & garbanzo beans (chickpeas). Then you will add whatever flavor you would like for your hummus to have. You could add garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, red peppers….whatever your heart desires. When making my own hummus I love to use Mezzetta Everything Spread. This spread comes in four different mouth watering flavors, Garlic & Parmesan, Sun-Dried Tomato & Basil, Olive, Garlic & Parmesan and Hot Chili Pepper. All you need to do is add a Tablespoon of whichever ever spread sounds good to your hummus and you have a different twist every time.

sundried tomato and basil hummus_4

In today’s two hummus recipes I used the Olive, Parmesan & Garlic and Sun-Dried Tomato & Basil Mezzetta Everything Spread. These spreads instantly add a delicious flavor to your hummus or however you decide to use the spread. With these spreads you can mix it, toss it, dip it, blend it, stir, or even spread it on whatever you like.  I can find the Mezzetta Everything Spread on the Italian food aisle at my local grocery story. It is next to the pasta and sauces.  If you can’t find it at your local grocery then you can also purchase them online at www.mezzetta.com

sundried tomato and basil hummus_3

Olive, Parmesan, & Garlic Hummus
Author: 
Recipe type: Appetizer
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 cups
 
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • ¼ cup Tahini
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 Tablespoon of the Olive, Parmesan, & Garlic everything spread by Mezzetta (or 1 Tablespoon of the other flavors of your choice)
  • 1 (15oz) can of garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1-2 Tablespoons of water if needed
  • ½ Tablespoon of the spread that you chose for garnish
Instructions
  1. In a food processor add the lemon juice and tahini first and process until smooth.
  2. Then add your olive oil, salt, and Olive, Parmesan, & Garlic everything spread.
  3. Process until smooth.
  4. Add you Garbanzo beans and process until smooth.
  5. Add 1-2 Tablespoons of water if your hummus seems dry.
  6. Garnish with an additional ½ Tablespoon of Olive, Parmesan, & Garlic spread.
  7. Serve with Pita chips or fresh vegetables of your choice.

To make the Sun-Dried Tomato & Basil Hummus follow the recipe above substituting the Olive, Parmesan, & Garlic Mezzetta Everything Spread for the Sun-Dried Tomato & Basil Mezzetta Everything Spread.

sundried tomato and basil hummus

Mezzetta Everything Spread is giving my readers two chances to win a Mezzetta Gift Basket of their own. First you can enter below by answering this question, “Which Everything Spread are you most excited to try?” I will be choosing a winner on Thursday April 9th and Mezzetta will ship you your gift basket. Second, you can go directly to Mezzetta’s website and enter there by clicking HERE. Good Luck!

giftbasket

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Greek Green Bean Salad

It’s our Spring Break here in San Antonio!! Yippee!! It’s been nice not having to be on a schedule with the boys and just letting them rest and play. Next week will be hard getting back into the swing of things. Only two more months of school though and we will be on summer break. Then you will most likely find me pulling my hair out by week 2 being home all day with the boys!! It helps though when we can stay busy. We have made friends here in SA which has helped a TON on breaks like these from our normal routine. We enjoy meeting up with them and going to the park, pool, or to each others houses. The kids have fun, we have fun, so it’s just a win for all of us.  I lo0ok forward to all of our adventures this summer. Yesterday we went to a play called Elephant and Piggie with a group of their friends from school. Afterwards we walked to lunch and I was able to snap the cutest picture of them all holding hands. I love the sweet friendships that they have made and pray that they continue to have meaningful friendships as they grow up. boys Now on to some yumminess (not a word I know but I like it!)  So last night we had steak, sweet potatoes and this delicious Greek Green Bean Salad! I often get tired of having veggies by themselves on my plate so I look for ways to incorporate my vegetables into salads or slaw.  With this salad you will cook your green beans for only 3-4 minutes in boiling water and then rinse them in cold water to stop the cooking process. Stir together the red peppers, chickpeas, feta, and Greek dressing and you have your self an easy and delicious side salad that isn’t like any other. It would be wonderful as a side to any meat or by itself. I love all the flavors combined.

 

Greek Green Bean Salad

5.0 from 1 reviews
Greek Green Bean Salad
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 1 (8oz) package of thin green beans
  • 1 medium size red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 (15oz) can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
  • ⅓ cup bottled Greek dressing
  • ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
Instructions
  1. Boil water in a medium size sauce pan. Once it is boiling place green beans inside the boiling water and let cook 4 minutes. Or until it reaches the crisp but tender stage.
  2. Drain beans and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process.
  3. In a bowl, stir together the beans, bell pepper, chickpeas, dressing, and feta.

Below you will find some other ways that I have used fruit and veggies in our side dishes. I hope everyone has a great remainder to your week!

XOXO,

Deanna

Grilled Veggies and Tortellini salad

Grilled Veggies and Tortellini Salad

 Fruit and Veggie Salad

Fruit & Veggie Salad 3

Skinny Caramel Yogurt Dip

Hi everyone! I have missed writing and sharing recipes with all of you last week. I hope everyone is doing well.  My son turned four on Sunday and I have been consumed with preparing for the party, spending time with house guests, and taking care of our now four year old that has an ear infection. 🙁 Poor guy got sick on his birthday and is just now recovering. Here is a picture of him with his dad (aren’t they handsome??). He had a fantastic time at his party with all of his buddies! I’m so blessed to be chosen to raise this busy little guy!!

skinny caramel yogurt dip_3

skinny caramel yogurt dip

Our five year old is about to lose his first tooth!! I can’t believe it!  His tooth has been loose now for a couple of weeks and it just won’t fall out. He is getting so discouraged and is checking it all the time. He keeps requesting for me to cut up apples for him to bite into so I have found myself buying apples a lot lately. Channel good thoughts are way that it will fall out soon!

I LOVE to dip my apple slices into caramel dip but I also know that it’s not always the healthiest for you. So, I made some Skinny Caramel Yogurt Dip instead. I bought some low fat plain Greek yogurt and added 1/3 of a cup (or heaping spoonful) of caramel topping to the yogurt. TO DIE FOR!! So delicious and not as fattening for those that are trying to watch what you eat. The kids love it and we do to so it’s a double win for us. Have you ever tried putting different toppings in your yogurt to use as a dip? I’d love some new ideas for our fruit.

Skinny Caramel Yogurt Dip
Author: 
Recipe type: Dip
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 (7oz) container low-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • ⅓ cup caramel topping
  • Serve with fruit of your choice
Instructions
  1. Combine ingredients and serve cold.

Hope you all of a great week and stay healthy! There are all kinds of nasty bugs going around in San Antonio right now. I’ve been washing my hands like a crazy lady!! Ha ha!!

XOXO,

Deanna

 

Minestrone

 

Minestrone

When I was little, on my dads side of the family, the ladies would always get together for birthdays and special occasions. We would meet for lunch and visit. I remember loving these times together with the ladies and getting to see my cousins. One of the places we would often meet was the Olive Garden. My mom and I would always get the soup and salad special. Which if I remember correctly was unlimited soup, salad, and breadsticks. Yum!! No wonder I loved these get togethers so much! Ha!!

I would always get one of two soups, either the Minestrone or Pasta e fagioli. Both soups are delicious and to this day when I go there it is always a toss up to what I am going to get.  Today, however,  I am sharing with you a version of the Minestrone soup that I like to cook when ever I’m in the mood for some Italian comfort food. This version is very easy and can be thrown together at the last minute. It’s perfect served by itself, with a salad, or with some hummus and pita chips (that’s what I ate with mine. 😉

And of course to add my husbands advice in here…can you guess it??? Yes, you could add some Italian sausage or shredded chicken to this soup and it would be perfect! Yes, and it would make it even more Glorious! love you honey!

Minestrone
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 1 (28oz) can diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings. I used one with garlic, basil, & oregano.
  • 1 (14 oz) can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (14oz) can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 medium yellow pepper, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 cup dried penned pasta
  • 2 cups spinach, chopped
  • shredded Parmesan for garnish
Instructions
  1. On the stove top pour your tomatoes, 2 cups of water, beans, broth, yellow pepper, seasonings, and pasta. Stir to combine.
  2. Bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce to medium and let simmer for 10 minutes or until the pasta is done.
  4. Stir in the spinach and let cook for 5 more minutes.
  5. Spoon into individual bowls.
  6. Garnish with shredded Parmesan if you wish.

 

minestrone 2

It’s almost the weekend everyone!! Yippee!!  Love to all and mountains of blessings to each of you!

XOXO,

Deanna

 

Pear & Blue Cheese with a Sweet Vinaigrette

 

pear and blue cheese salad 5

I fell in love with Pear & Blue Cheese salad with a sweet vinaigrette when I was pregnant with our first baby.  I will never forget the restaurant I was at, who I was with, and I believe I even remember what I was wearing!  I was  just beginning to show and was loving all things food! Once I got past that yucky first trimester everything I ate was amazing. I even remember subway sandwiches tasting so good and one time eating a whole foot long! What a food lover and huge dork am I???

Well, ever since then I will often crave this yummy salad and have to throw it together to satisfy those taste buds of mine.  I love the taste of a sweet pear with the sharp flavor of the cheese. I always try to get a little bit of everything on my fork. Those walnuts are a little tricky but I try! With this salad I drizzle a homemade sweet vinaigrette on top made with maple syrup and red wine vinegar. Oh my goodness, it’s so good!!

Don’t forget that pears are a lot like apples and turn really quickly. So be sure to cut your pear up last right before serving.

 

Pear & Blue Cheese Salad with a Sweet Vinaigrette
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 plates
 
Ingredients
  • Mixed greens, about 4 handfuls
  • 2 pears, sliced and diced
  • blue cheese, crumbled
  • walnuts, for sprinkling on top
  • 4 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Combine olive oil, red wine vinegar, and maple syrup for your dressing in a container and mix well. Set aside.
  2. On a plate lay out your mixed greens, pears, blue cheese, and walnuts.
  3. Drizzle with sweet vinaigrette dressing to your liking.
  4. Enjoy!

 

pear and blue cheese 700 1000

More delicious salads just in case you missed them:

Grilled Vegetables & Tortellini Salad

Grilled Veggies and Tortellini Salad

Fruit and Veggie Salad

Fruit & Veggie Salad 3

Have a blessed week everyone!

XOXO

Deanna

Spinach Salad with a Hot Bacon Dressing

 

Spinach Salad with a Hot Bacon Dressing

Oh bacon, how I love thee…  Are you a bacon lover too? How do you like your bacon? I love mine extra crispy.  I usually eat mine on the side of an over easy egg with something sweet like a buttermilk pancake or cinnamon roll.  The perfect breakfast! Or on a club sandwich…. MMMM….

Today I’m not eating my extra crispy bacon for breakfast. I’m eating it for lunch! And not only is my bacon on my spinach salad, but it is also in the dressing! Gasp!! I KNOW!! Don’t be a Hot  bacon dressing hater until you have tried this. It’s warm, spicy, and goes well with a spinach salad. Yuumy! Have you ever dried a dressing like this before? What did you think?

I know that I’ve told you before that we like spicy food at our house.  And we do, but not too spicy.  The dressing and pecans have Tabasco sauce on them, but don’t let that scare you off.  They do have a kick to them, but it’s not too spicy. It adds more flavor to your salad than anything. You’ll love it I promise!

Hot Pecans

Toasted Hot Pecans
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 12-15 oz of halved pecans
  • 2 Tablespoons Canola Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Tabasco Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • ¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. Combine Canola oil and Tabasco sauce in a bowl.
  2. Pour pecans in with the oil and sauce and stir to evenly coat the pecans.
  3. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 10-15 minutes or until toasted.
  4. Sprinkle with salt and Parmesan and let cool.

 

 

spinach salad 2

Spinach Salad with a Hot Bacon Dressing
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 8 slices of bacon
  • 2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 8 cups of spinach
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup of toasted hot pecans
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • ¼ cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Fry bacon on the stove top until you reach how you like your bacon. We like ours extra crispy!
  2. Remove cooked bacon and set aside. Pour the remaining bacon fat away keeping only 2-3 Tablespoons.
  3. Pour the 2-3 tablespoons of fat, 2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce, and water into a dressing container. Shake well.
  4. In a large bowl add spinach, cranberries, toasted hot pecans, Parmesan and feta cheese.
  5. Pour your hot bacon dressing over the salad and toss to combine.

 

I hope that you are each doing well and that you have a great remainder to your week.

XOXO,

Deanna

Creamy Tortellini Vegetable Soup

 

Creamy Tortillini Vegetable Soup

Is it cold where you are?? We are freezing down here in South TX! It’s every man for himself when you are walking out to the car in the cold with me. I AM NOT used to the cold. My poor boys have to hurry or they miss getting help into the car. I don’t dilly dally around and discuss who’s turn it is to get in the car first or who gets to get in which side of the car or who gets to sit in which car seat. We go, get in, and once the car gets warm make any other decisions. Ha!! It’s so sad y’all. I don’t know how you Northerner’s do it. It’s only 30 degrees here and I’m dressed for the arctic. When I hear that the high in Minnesota is -1 for the day I just die! You are in my prayers for sure!! You can come visit me in TX anytime and I’ll make you a batch of this delicious Creamy Tortellini Vegetable Soup. It doesn’t get much healthier or delicious my friends! The sauteed carrots and onions are pureed into the deliciousness of the soup and you don’t even know they are there. Next time I make this though I think I will add some fresh zucchini or squash as well. My husband and I were also discussing how good some shredded chicken or Italian sausage would be. My husband can’t go a meal without meat so he is always trying to find a way to stick it in there. He’s so funny!

 

Creamy Tortellini Vegetable Soup
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Italian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 adults
 
Ingredients
  • 4-5 diced carrots
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 (28oz) cans of whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1 (32oz) carton of vegetable broth
  • ⅓ cup fresh basil, chopped-more for garnish
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • Frozen or fresh tortellini (I used 16oz three cheese tortellini by Bertolli)
  • ¾ cup heavy whipping cream
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Shredded Parmesan, for garnish
Instructions
  1. Saute diced carrots, onions, and garlic in 2 Tablespoon olive oil in a large pot.
  2. Once your vegetables are tender add the canned tomatoes, vegetable broth, basil, and sugar.
  3. Bring to a boil and stir often.
  4. Once you have brought your soup to a boil, cover and simmer on low for an hour to an hour and a half.
  5. Using a food processor or blender, blend your soup unitl it has reached a smooth consistency. If you like it chunky don't blend as long.
  6. Pour you soup back into the large pot and continue to simmer.
  7. Once it's back to a simmer cook your tortellini in your soup according to package instructions. I cooked mine for 10 minutes.
  8. Bring your simmer down to low and add your heavy cream. Continue to let warm until warmed through.
  9. If your soup is too thick at this point just add a little water to it until you reach the consistency that you like for your soup. I had to add about a cup to mine.
  10. Salt and pepper to your desired taste.
  11. Garnish with shredded Parmesan and fresh chopped basil.

 

I served this soup along side this yummy Feta & Apple salad that I wrote about a couple of days ago. Click on the picture below if you missed it.

Feta & Apple Salad

Keep your self nice and warm this weekend!

XOXO,

Deanna

Feta & Apple Salad

 

Feta & Apple Salad

It’s been a great start to our first week back at school. I had forgotten what it was like for the house to be quiet. I can actually complete thoughts in my head! During the break I didn’t get a chance to try many new recipes or play around in my kitchen. Yesterday I finally got the chance to whip up some new dishes and can’t wait to share them with you.

One of them is this delicious Feta & Apple Salad. It has a yummy vinaigrette drizzled on top that will make you want to go back for seconds…ahem someone I know went back for seconds….

I LOVE putting fruit in my salads!! Do you? What is your favorite? I love to add pears or apples. It so good to have a sweet fruit paired with bitter lettuce or the tartness of your dressing. In this Feta & Apple salad the sharp cheeses and sweet apples and cranberries go so well together! I served this salad along side a warm bowl of Tortellini soup (recipe to come in a few days). Perfection!

Feta & Apple Salad
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-3 dinner plates
 
Ingredients
  • 4 cups mixed greens
  • 1 Granny Smith apple peeled, cored, and cut into cubes
  • 3 Tablespoons dried cranberries
  • 3 Tablespoons raisins
  • 4 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese
  • ¼ cup walnuts
  • ¼ cup feta cheese
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp onion powder
  • ¼ tsp garlic salt
Instructions
  1. For your salad dressing combine the olive oil, vinegar, pepper, onion powder, & garlic salt in a sealed container. Close the container and shake well to combine. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. In a large bowl place your mixed greens, apple, cranberries, raisins,cheeses, and walnuts.
  3. Toss salad and pour dressing on top!