Dump and Bake Parmesan Shrimp and Vegetable Casserole

The easiest, tastiest, shrimp casserole ever!  You can have this impressive dish on the dinner table in under 30 minutes.  JUMP TO RECIPE

Dump and Bake Parmesan Shrimp and Vegetable Casserole -The easiest recipe ever! You can have this impressive dish on the dinner table in under 30 minutes. Gluten-free. | QueenofMyKitchen.com | #dinner #easydinner #shrimp #shrimpdinner #glutenfree #glutenfreerecipe #glutenfreerecipes #dumpandbake

Many Italian Americans celebrate Christmas Eve with a gigantic meal featuring seven different kinds of seafood. This is known as the Feast of Seven Fishes. It’s a Roman Catholic tradition connected to the custom of abstaining from meat on Christmas Eve and was likely started right here in the United States by Italian immigrants back in the early 1900’s as a way to honor their heritage. Even though both my husband and I have some Italian blood, we don’t celebrate with the wide variety of seafood that is typical of many of these feasts. Instead, our family’s simple way to keep this tradition alive is by having shrimp for dinner on Christmas Eve. In the past I’ve always made classic shrimp scampi, but this year I’m serving Dump and Bake Parmesan Shrimp and Vegetable Casserole. Despite its name, this is an elegant dish that can be scaled up to feed a crowd and is so easy to make that the recipe instructions can be summed up in one sentence: dump all ingredients into a casserole dish, stir, and bake at 400 for 20 minutes. Now if that’s not simple, I don’t know what is! (more…)

Cauliflower Puffs

A healthy, low-calorie hors d’oeuvre with subtle sweet and savory flavor.  These melt-in-your-mouth nibbles clock in at only 20 calories each!  JUMP TO RECIPE

Cauliflower Puffs - A healthy, low-calorie hors d'oeuvre with subtle sweet and savory flavor. These melt-in-your-mouth nibbles clock in at only 20 calories each! | QueenofMyKitchen.com | #appetizer #horsoeuvre #appetizers #partyappetizers #cauliflower #cauliflowerrecipe #cauliflowerrecipes #healthyappetizer #healthyappetizers

Appetizers and hors d’oeuvres are the stars of any holiday party. Who can resist all those beautiful puff pastry creations, the rich cream cheese dips, and other delicious bites in the shape of wreathes, snowmen, and reindeer. As much as I love all these (and believe me, I always make a point to sample at least one of each), it’s nice to have some lighter alternatives to these yummy, but often very heavy, appetizers. Enter Cauliflower Puffs! These fluffy and healthy nibbles literally melt in your mouth and are only 20 calories each, so feel free to gobble up as many as you want. Tis the season! (more…)

Blue Cheese Brussels Sprouts with Walnuts and Crispy Prosciutto

Roasted Brussels sprouts get a boost of flavor from pungent blue cheese and salty prosciutto.  An easy and impressive side dish.  JUMP TO RECIPE

Blue Cheese Brussels Sprouts with Walnuts and Crispy Prosciutto - Roasted Brussels sprouts get a boost of flavor from pungent blue cheese and salty prosciutto. An easy and impressive side dish perfect for holiday entertaining. | QueenofMyKitchen.com | #brusselssprouts #wintervegetable #wintervegetables #side #sides #vegetables #holidaydinner

Demand for Brussels sprouts has increased dramatically over the past decade. Some people attribute this to restaurant chefs who, several years ago, began pairing roasted Brussels sprouts with bacon – a trend that led consumers to develop a newfound appreciation for this old-fashioned, and often reviled, winter vegetable. I admit I was one of those patrons who was once unenthusiastic about Brussels sprouts but declared myself a fan after tasting them with bacon at a restaurant. This recipe is a riff on the Brussels sprouts/bacon concept but I’ve amped up the flavor even further with the addition of blue cheese, and thrown in some toasted walnuts for good measure. Blue Cheese Brussels Sprouts with Walnuts and Crispy Prosciutto is a bold, delicious side dish that has “holiday dinner” written all over it! (more…)

Make Ahead Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

A classic side dish that feeds a crowd and can be made entirely ahead of time. Great for holiday entertaining.  JUMP TO RECIPE

Make Ahead Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes - A classic side dish that feeds a crowd and can be made entirely ahead of time. Great for holiday entertaining. #thanksgiving #thanksgivingside #thanksgivingsides #holidayfood #mashedpotatoes

Let’s face it, cooking and serving Thanksgiving dinner is an ordeal. Even if your guests pitch in by bringing food and helping with the cleanup, it’s still a ton of work. The only way to keep your sanity through it all is to stay organized and do as much as you can ahead of time, including some of the cooking. A lot of people think mashed potatoes, a classic Thanksgiving side dish, must be served immediately after you make them, but this recipe for Make Ahead Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes dispels that myth.  This dish can be made entirely in advance, allowing you more time to spend with your guests, which is after all, what Thanksgiving is all about! (more…)

Almond Oat Cups

A cross between a cookie, a muffin, and a teacake.  Free of gluten and eggs, and only take 10 minutes to bake.  JUMP TO RECIPE

Almond Oat Cups - A cross between a cookie, a muffin, and a teacake. Gluten-free, egg-free, and only take 10 minutes to bake. Perfect as a healthy snack or with a cup of tea. | QueenofMyKitchen.com | #glutenfree #glutenfreesnack #glutenfreebaking #glutenfreesnack #oatcups #eggfree #eggfreebaking

These gluten-free, egg-free Almond Oat Cups are a cross between a cookie and a muffin, and even though they’re perfect for teatime, because they’re dainty and not too sweet (each cup has only 4 grams of sugar), they’d also be fantastic for dessert. Just imagine some fresh berries or baked apples on top, along with a scoop of vanilla ice cream – yum! One of the best things about these healthy little treats is that they only take 10 minutes to bake – the prep time is pretty quick too, 15 minutes max. I use a standard 12-cup muffin pan to make “cups” but if you don’t own a muffin pan you can also use an 8 x 8-inch square pan and make “bars” instead. Simply line the pan with parchment paper and press the mixture evenly into the pan. Once it’s finished baking, let it cool completely and then cut it into bars or squares. (more…)

Roasted Cauliflower with Feta, Tomatoes, Walnuts, and Capers

Cauliflower gets dressed up in this vibrant side dish with a variety of flavors, colors, and textures.  An awesome appetizer too.  JUMP TO RECIPE

Roasted Cauliflower with Feta, Tomatoes, Walnuts, and Capers - Cauliflower gets dressed up in this vibrant side dish with a variety of flavors, colors, and textures. Super simple to prepare. Great as an appetizer too. Gluten-free. | QueenofMyKitchen.com | #vegetables #vegetable #sidedishes #sidedish #thanksgiving #glutenfree #yummyveggies #cauliflowerrecipes

The rise of cauliflower as a celebrity vegetable has been nothing short of meteoric. Much of this growth can be attributed to cauliflower rice, a term used to describe cauliflower that has been chopped into tiny pieces that resemble grains of rice. So staggering is the growth of this vegetable in disguise that huge, multinational brands are now jumping in to capture market share. Green Giant (a division of General Mills) now harvests over 100,000 heads of cauliflower daily to meet the growing demand – a six-fold increase from just a few years ago! I’ve done my part as a food blogger by posting a variety of new-fangled cauliflower-based dishes (see the last paragraph for links to these recipes), but recently I had the urge to go back to using cauliflower in a more traditional way and came up with this recipe for Roasted Cauliflower with Feta, Tomatoes, Walnuts, and Capers. (more…)

Fig Balsamic Farro with Spinach, Cranberries, and Almonds

A nutritious, delicious, Italian inspired dish the whole family will love.  JUMP TO RECIPE

Fig Balsamic Farro with Spinach, Cranberries, and Almonds is a delicious, nutritious, Italian inspired dish that can be served as an appetizer, side, or entrée. | QueenofMyKitchen.com | #farro #emmer #ancientgrain #ancientgrains #ancientwheat #wholegrains #sides #grains #easyrecipe #easyrecipes

If you’re looking to incorporate more whole grains into your diet, here’s a great recipe to add to your rotation. Fig Balsamic Farro with Spinach, Cranberries, and Almonds is a flavor packed, Italian inspired dish the whole family will love. Whenever I make this I always double the recipe because we gobble it up so quickly. It’s great for lunch and as a side dish with dinner. The sweet, tart, fig balsamic flavor, along with cranberries and almonds, is an awesome complement to chicken and pork, but really, this dish goes well with just about anything. And, if you like tapas style dining, you can even serve it as a small plate appetizer, as pictured below. (more…)

Honey Almond Shortbread

A tender, buttery, melt-in-your-mouth shortbread, sweetened naturally and gluten-free.   JUMP TO RECIPE

Honey Almond Shortbread – A tender, buttery, melt-in-your-mouth shortbread sweetened naturally and gluten-free. A quick and easy recipe. Only 10 minutes to bake with no rolling or cutting of the dough required. Perfect for afternoon tea. | QueenofMyKitchen.com | #cookie #cookies #shortbread #shortbreadcookies #glutenfreecookie #glutenfreecookies #easyrecipe #glutenfreedessert #healthybaking

Shortbread has been around for hundreds of years. According to this article on the history of shortbread, the earliest documented recipe appeared in a Scottish cookbook in the year 1736. Back then nobody was concerned about the difference between natural and refined sweeteners or whether the baked goods they were eating were gluten-free, but nowadays most of us want (or need) healthier, more allergy friendly food. Thankfully shortbread can be replicated to address these modern-day concerns without any sacrifice in taste. This recipe for Honey Almond Shortbread is every bit as rich, delicious, and buttery as traditional shortbread but it’s sweetened naturally (with honey), and made with almond flour instead of wheat flour, so it’s gluten-free too. (more…)

Herbed Sesame Sunflower Seed Crackers

Vegan, gluten-free, dairy free crackers with a wholesome taste and tender texture.  JUMP TO RECIPE

Herbed Sesame Sunflower Seed Crackers - Vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free crackers with a wholesome taste and tender texture. Super nutritious. Delicious dipped in hummus. | QueenofMyKitchen.com | #crackers #vegancrackers #glutenfreecrackers #dairyfreecrackers #vegansnack #vegansnacks #glutenfreesnack #glutenfreesnacks #dairyfreesnack #dairyfreesnacks #healthysnack #seeds

I put crackers into the same category as salad dressings. They’re not at all hard to make from scratch yet most people purchase these foods at the grocery store.  This is probably even more true for crackers than salad dressings. I once mentioned to a friend that I make my own crackers and she said she never once considered making crackers – that it was so easy to buy good ones, why bother.  And this is someone who loves to cook! Well, I’m here to tell you that making crackers couldn’t be simpler and you’ll be rewarded with ones that are healthier and taste so much better than store-bought crackers. These Herbed Sesame Sunflower Seed Crackers are nothing like any crackers you’ve ever purchased. They’re vegan, gluten-free, and dairy free and have a wholesome taste and tender texture. A few of these crackers dipped in Sun-Dried Tomato Red Lentil Hummus is the perfect, healthy snack to stave off those hunger pangs that sometimes strike before dinnertime. (more…)

Paleo Apple Zucchini Spice Cake

An incredibly moist and delicious, autumn inspired spice cake.  JUMP TO RECIPE

Paleo Apple Zucchini Spice Cake - Apple, zucchini, and warm fall spices in a gluten-free, dairy free dessert. The moistest cake you’ll ever taste. #dessert #paleodessert #glutenfreedessert #dairyfreedessert #paleo #fallfood #spicecake #zucchinicake #cake

If you’ve ever done any cooking with sour cream or yogurt, you know that when it’s called for in baking recipes the result is usually an incredibly moist and tender finished product. But there’s another food that’s just as effective at transforming what might otherwise be dry and crumbly baked goods into melt-in-your-mouth treats, and ironically, it’s a vegetable – zucchini! This Paleo Apple Zucchini Spice Cake is one of the moistest, most delicious cakes you’ll ever taste yet it contains no dairy, no oil, and no refined sugar. It’s the perfect, healthy dessert to mark to the beginning of fall. (more…)

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