Baked Butternut Squash Parmesan Dip with Homemade Whole Wheat Pita Chips

Baked butternut squash parmesan dip with homemade whole wheat pi
This dip is so easy to make — it’s decadent, creamy, and a perfect party appetizer! You can roast a butternut squash to make the mashed butternut squash, or you can “cheat” and use frozen butternut squash cubes, which makes the dip into a 10 minute recipe! You could use a bag of pita chips from the grocery if you are in a true rush, or for an extra 15 minutes of effort, you can whip up a batch of your own homemade pita chips.

Baked butternut squash parmesan dip with homemade whole wheat pi
Baked butternut squash parmesan dip with homemade whole wheat pi
Baked butternut squash parmesan dip with homemade whole wheat pi
Baked butternut squash parmesan dip with homemade whole wheat pi
Baked butternut squash parmesan dip with homemade whole wheat pi
Baked butternut squash parmesan dip with homemade whole wheat pi

Baked Butternut Squash Parmesan Dip with Homemade Whole Wheat Pita Chips

Ingredients:
For the Dip
2 cups mashed butternut squash (fresh or frozen)
3/4 cup grated parmesan
1/4 cup cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup parmesan, shredded

For the Pita Chips
4 6″ whole wheat pitas
1/4 cup garlic olive oil (regular olive oil will work fine as well)
1/4 tsp salt

Directions:
Prepare mashed butternut squash (by either roasting a butternut squash, or preparing frozen butternut squash cubes according to directions on the package).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 7×10″ or 8×8″ baking dish.

In a large bowl, mix together the mashed butternut squash and 3/4 cup grated parmesan. Put cream cheese in a bowl and microwave for about 18 seconds. Mix this into mixture, and then pour mixture into the baking dish, using a spoon to make sure it’s roughly even. Top with the remaining 1/4 cup parmesan. Bake for 25 minutes.

While dip is baking, put your pitas in a pile and slice them into 8 pieces each. If it’s a pita pocket, separate the pieces. Place in a large bowl and toss with olive oil. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lay the pita triangles out, without overlapping. Top with a pinch of salt (a little will go a long way). When the dip is done, remove from the oven and bake the pita chips for about 10-15 minutes, checking frequently to make sure they don’t burn.

Inspired by:
The Kitchn

Strawberry Banana Baked Oatmeal

Baked oatmeal recipe with strawberries, bananas, and chocolate c
Baked oatmeal is one of my favorite ways to start the day. It’s such an easy, customizable dish — I basically just throw in whatever fruits I have in the fridge, some oats, some milk, a few other quick ingredients, pop it in the oven, go play with my son in the living room while it bakes, and by the time everyone is up and awake, we’ve got a big, delicious, baked oatmeal to start our day! I used to make my baked oatmeals with some brown sugar and butter, but over time, I’ve found ways to substitute or remove the less-healthy ingredients, while still maintaining that breakfast-deliciousness!

Baked oatmeal recipe with strawberries, bananas, and chocolate c
Baked oatmeal recipe with strawberries, bananas, and chocolate c
Baked oatmeal recipe with strawberries, bananas, and chocolate c
Strawberry Banana Baked Oatmeal [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
3 cups old fashioned rolled oats
1.5 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup chocolate chips
3 cups milk (I use 1%)
1/4 cup apple sauce
1.5 tsp vanilla extract
1 pint strawberries, washed and thinly sliced
2 small, ripe bananas, thinly sliced

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Use butter to grease a 13×9″ baking dish.

In a large bowl, mix together the oats, baking powder, salt and chocolate chips. Next add in the milk, apple sauce, and vanilla extract. Lastly, mix in the sliced strawberries and bananas. Mix together lightly, and pour into your baking dish.

Bake, uncovered for about 35-40 minutes, or until lightly browned on top.

Notes:
If you’d like to keep these even more on the healthy side, you could remove or reduce the chocolate chips. However, since there is no sugar or brown sugar in this recipe, I find the chocolate chips give it an awesome sweetness. You could try reducing to 1/4 cup or even less if you’d like to make it healthier, but still maintain a bit of that chocolately sweetness.

This dish feeds about 4-6 people.

Baked oatmeal recipe with strawberries, bananas, and chocolate c

Cottage Cheese Baked Mac and Cheese with Broccoli

Cottage cheese baked mac and cheese with broccoli. Recipe by Nes
This is a healthier — but every bit as delicious — spin on everyone’s favorite comfort food: mac and cheese! I love this recipe because you don’t need to make the sauce on the stove — you just mix up a few ingredients in a bowl, combine with pasta and veggies, and bake in the oven for 30 minutes. It is SO easy, and has an awesome texture and flavor. I love sneaking cottage cheese into my cooking because it packs SO much protein. Seriously, have you checked the protein content of your cottage cheese lately? 1 cup of cottage cheese has 30g of protein!! (I use 4% cottage cheese. I believe the lower-fat versions may have slightly less). 30g!! That’s equivalent to 5 eggs or 1 cup of chicken! So I frequently try to substitute things like cream or cheese with good old protein-packed 4% cottage cheese. In addition, by adding in some nutritious green veggies to the dish, you totally won’t feel as guilty about going for seconds!

Cottage cheese baked mac and cheese with broccoli. Recipe by Nes
Cottage cheese baked mac and cheese with broccoli. Recipe by Nes
Cottage cheese baked mac and cheese with broccoli. Recipe by Nes
Cottage cheese baked mac and cheese with broccoli. Recipe by Nes
Cottage Cheese Baked Mac & Cheese with Broccoli [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
1 lb pasta shells (You could substitute in whole wheat pasta for an even healthier dish)
1 lb broccoli, steamed (fresh or frozen)
2 cups 4% cottage cheese (Friendship is my favorite)
1 cup shredded parmesan cheese, plus 3/4 cup for the topping
1/2 cup milk (I used 1%)
1 tbs dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt

Directions:
Prepare pasta according to directions, cooking until al dente. Meanwhile, steam broccoli. When pasta and broccoli are done, drain well and mix together in a large bowl.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 13×9″ baking dish.

In smaller bowl, mix together the cottage cheese, 1 cup of the parmesan, milk, dijon mustard, and salt. Mix cream sauce into the pasta and veggies, and pour into the baking dish.

Bake, uncovered, for about 30 minutes, or until cheese on top is starting to lightly brown.

Inspired by:
24carrotlife

Cottage cheese baked mac and cheese with broccoli. Recipe by Nes
Cottage cheese baked mac and cheese with broccoli. Recipe by Nes

 

 

Black Bean Butternut Squash Veggie Burgers

black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
As a vegetarian, veggie burgers are something I grew up eating all the time. I’ve been in the mood for a “burger” recently, but now that I have a son, I’ve become a lot more conscious of the ingredients in the foods we eat. I found that my favorite veggie burgers that you can buy in stores are full of ingredients I can’t pronounce, and included things like caramel food coloring! In addition, I try not to eat too much soy, so that leaves a lot of “fake” meats out. So, I was determined to come up with my own recipe for veggie burgers — and I’m happy to say that these were a hit! Even my husband (who is not a vegetarian, and loves himself a good burger), ate SIX of these burger sliders! Six!! So, I consider that a vote for these being a decent substitute for the real thing. Especially when prepared with all the toppings, like swiss cheese, dijon mustard, and ketchup!

The base of the burgers are black beans and butternut squash — both of which are full of nutrients and are a great addition to your diet. If you are in a rush and want to make these burgers quickly, there are so many shortcuts you can take — using boxes or cans of cooked black beans, using frozen butternut squash, and using frozen garlic cubes are all ways to turn this into a speedy dinner!

In addition, these veggie burgers are egg free, and vegan (if you don’t add the swiss cheese at the end). The bread crumbs and olive oil act as a “binder” for the burger, so they still stay together — and because they are baked in the oven, you can go get something else done while they are baking, rather than cooking them individually on the stove.

black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci

Homemade Black Bean Butternut Squash Veggie Burgers [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
4 tbs olive oil (2 tbs for sautéing onions and garlic, 2 tbs for burger mixture)
1 onion, diced
4 tsp garlic, minced
2 boxes of black beans (no salt added), drained and rinsed
1/2 cup water
1 1/4 cup mashed butternut squash (can use fresh or frozen)
1 1/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
12 slider buns
12 slices of swiss cheese (omit if vegan)

Directions:
Chop onion and garlic. Drain and rinse black beans. Prepare mashed butternut squash.

Heat 2 tbs olive oil over medium heat and sauté onions for about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for about 1 to 2 minutes. Next, add black beans and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and pour beans mixture into a large mixing bowl.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

To the black beans mixture, mix in: the mashed butternut squash, the bread crumbs, and 2 tbs olive oil. The mixture will be fairly thick.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a 1/3 cup measuring cup, pack with burger mixture, using the back of a spoon to press down. Turn cup over on the parchment paper, and tap lightly under burger releases. Continue with the rest of the burger mixture.

Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and gently flip burgers over. Bake for another 20 minutes. If using cheese, remove from oven about 5 minutes before they are finished and layer swiss cheese slices over the burgers.

Serve on whole wheat slide buns with any of your favorite toppings, such as: ketchup, mustard, lettuce, mayo, tomatoes, and/or pickles.

Makes about 12 to 15 burgers.

black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci
black bean butternut squash homemade veggie burgers recipe. reci

Black Bean, Broccoli, and Brown Rice Burritos

neshikot-black-bean-broccoli-burritos-009
These burritos are hearty, delicious, and easy to make! They are a favorite in our family, from the littlest member to the eldest. The black beans and broccoli are both great sources of iron and protein, and the brown rice ties it all together. The black beans are cooked with salsa, onions, and garlic, making these burritos super tasty in addition to being full of important nutrients!

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Healthy Black Bean & Broccoli Burritos [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
2 tbs olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 tsp garlic, minced
2 boxes of black beans, drained and rinsed (about 14oz each)
1 1/2 cups salsa
1 lb steamed broccoli (fresh or frozen)
3 cups cooked brown rice
12 oz shredded cheese
10 whole wheat tortillas

Directions:
Chop onion and drain/rinse black beans. Heat olive oil over medium heat, add onions and sauté for 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes. Add black beans and salsa, and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and place into a large bowl.

While black beans and salsa are cooking, steam broccoli and prepare brown rice.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Add steamed broccoli and cooked brown rice to the bowl, and mix together with the black bean and salsa mixture. Next, mix in 1 1/2 cups of the shredded and cheese.

Place tortillas on a plate, between two wet paper towels. Microwave for about 60 seconds.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. On each tortilla layer about 3 or 4 heaping spoonfuls of mixture. Roll up the tortilla and place seam side down on the baking sheet. When all 10 burritos are ready, top with the remaining shredded cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until cheese on top is melted and starting to brown.

Notes:
If you need to make these burritos quickly, there are a few products that will really speed up your cooking. I love using Dorot garlic cubes, which you just pop out straight into the pot. Using frozen broccoli and frozen cooked brown rice will also speed up the preparation a great deal as well.

My toddler LOVES these burritos. However, if you are feeding these to a toddler, please make sure they are properly cooled and you chop the pieces up very well.

neshikot-black-bean-broccoli-burritos-014
neshikot-black-bean-broccoli-burritos-015

5 Ingredient Green Bean Casserole

neshikot-green-bean-casserole-004
I don’t know how you could possibly make an easier green bean casserole than this! And it is so delicious, you would never know it took about 15 minutes to put together. This is an awesome last-minute recipe, and unlike many traditional green bean casserole recipes, it does not require the use of a can of processed soup. It may not be exactly what you remember from your Thanksgiving table (this recipe does not include onions), it is so tasty, quick, and easy that you won’t mind (or at least, we don’t!) It is great for a last-minute dish, and because it uses frozen veggies, you can whip it up in a flash.

Plus, since it only requires 5 ingredients, it’s a cost effective dish that you and your family will love! This recipe feeds about 3-4 people, but you could easily double the recipe to feed more.

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Easy 5 Ingredient Green Bean Casserole [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
16 oz frozen green beans (I use Whole Foods Organic chopped green beans)
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup shredded Parmesan, plus 1/4 cup extra for the topping
1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1/4 cup butter, melted

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare frozen green beans according to directions on the package.

Butter a baking dish (a 13×9″ or 8×8″ will both work). In a large bowl, mix together green beans, softened cream cheese (if in a rush, you can pop cream cheese in the microwave for about 15 seconds), and 1 cup parmesan. Pour green bean mixture into baking dish.

In a bowl, mix together bread crumbs, melted butter, and 1/4 cup parmesan. Pour topping over green bean mixture.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Notes:
This recipe makes about 3-4 servings. If you are serving more people, please double the recipe.

My toddler likes this dish a lot, but please remember to chop up the green beans into very small pieces if feeding this to a toddler.

neshikot-green-bean-casserole-005

Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R
This recipe for garlic roasted cherry tomatoes just couldn’t be easier, and will make your entire house smell incredible as it bakes! It makes a wonderful side dish, although I sometimes just eat a big whole of it for dinner! If you remove the bread crumbs and parmesan cheese, you could easily use these as a delicious mix in for pasta.

Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R
Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R
Garlic, basil, olive oil and salt mixture.
Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R
Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R
Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R
Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R
Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R

Garlic and Parmesan Roasted Cherry Tomatoes [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
20 oz cherry tomatoes, washed and sliced
2 tablespoons garlic olive oil (regular olive oil will work as well)
4 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp chopped basil
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Wash and slice cherry tomatoes and place into large mixing bowl. In a separate, small bowl, mix together the garlic, basil, garlic olive oil, and salt. Toss mixture with tomatoes. Mix in bread crumbs and parmesan and toss well.

Pour tomato mixture onto baking sheet, in a single layer.

Bake for 35-40 minutes, removing from the oven once around the 20 minute mark to move the tomatoes around a bit, and rotate the baking sheet. Keep checking tomatoes frequently at the end to make sure none of them are burning. Remove and serve!

Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Bread Crumbs and Parmesan. R

Cauliflower Sauce Baked Mac and Cheese with Peas

Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe
I love this recipe because it is the perfect example of a “hidden vegetable” — it uses a whole pound of cauliflower to make the cheese sauce — and yet, it blends right into the sauce. Even if my toddler picks out all the delicious peas, he still ends up getting some veggies because the sauce is so full of cauliflower! It’s easy to make, and makes a ton of food, so is great for a party, or if you’re looking to make something that provides lots of left overs for lunch the next day!

Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe
Mashing the cauliflower, which acts as the base for the sauce.
Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe
Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe
Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe
Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe
Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe

Cauliflower Sauce Baked Mac and Cheese with Peas [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
16 oz frozen cauliflower (I use Whole Foods Organic)
1 bag frozen peas
1 lb gemelli pasta (or any pasta you prefer)
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup whole milk yogurt
3 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil

Directions:
Cook cauliflower according to directions on package. I cook mine about a minute longer, to make sure they are easier to mash. Drain and place into a large mixing bowl.

Start cooking pasta according to directions on the box, to al dente. Also start cooking the peas according to the directions on the package.

While pasta and peas are cooking, mash the cauliflower well using a fork or potato masher. Mash until it resembles the mixture above — it does not need to be a perfect puree, but should be mashed enough that you no longer recognize any florets. Mix in the sharp cheddar cheese, yogurt, minced garlic, and salt. When pasta and peas are cooked, add them into the mixture and mix well.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil a 13×9″ baking dish. Pour pasta mixture into dish.

In a separate bowl, mix together the bread crumbs and grated parmesan. Pour this mixture over the pasta using spoonfuls.

Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes, rotating once during the baking time to ensure even cooking. Check occasionally to make sure topping does not burn.

Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe
Cauliflower sauce baked mac and cheese recipe

Vegetarian Creamy & Spicy Black Bean Burritos

Vegetarian black bean burrito recipe
These burritos are easy, delicious, creamy, spicy, and of course, vegetarian! They are so simple and quick to whip up, and the sauce will make your kitchen smell amazing while it cooks! Actually, just putting this blog post together is making me want to run downstairs and warm up my leftovers! But, before I do that, here is the recipe:

Vegetarian black bean burrito recipe
Vegetarian black bean burrito recipe
Vegetarian black bean burrito recipe
Vegetarian black bean burrito recipe
Vegetarian black bean burrito recipe
Vegetarian black bean burrito recipe
Creamy & Spicy Black Bean Burritos [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
6-8 whole wheat tortillas
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 boxes or cans of cooked black beans, drained and rinsed (About 14 oz each)
1 cup salsa (I use mild, but if you’d like to be really spicy, use medium or spicy salsa)
6 oz of cream cheese, cubed
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 oz shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:
In a large pot, warm up olive oil, and then sauté onions over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until softened. Next, add the beans, salsa, and salt. Stirring mixture frequently, let it come to a boil. Keep stirring (at least a few times per minute), and continue to let the mixture boil for roughly 3 more minutes. Turn off the heat, and add in the cubed cream cheese. Stir well until the cream cheese has all melted. Set mixture aside.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

On each tortilla, layer the bean mixture, followed by a couple tablespoons of shredded cheese. Roll up the tortillas, and place them all together on the baking sheet. Top all of the burritos with a light layer of shredded cheese, and bake for about 15 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

Notes:
There are so many things you could add on to these burritos. You could top with some greek yogurt, add in some corn, avocado, or chopped jalapeños!

Vegetarian black bean burrito recipe

Vegetarian Corn Chowder Recipe

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Corn chowder is one of my husband’s favorite foods, so I had to come up with an easy, vegetarian recipe for a delicious corn chowder! It’s creamy, delicious, and filled with sweet corn. Typically, corn chowder includes potatoes and some sort of cream, but this chowder is made a bit healthier by using cannellini beans as a substitute for the potatoes, and milk as a substitute for the cream. It’s quick, easy, and delicious!

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Vegetarian Corn Chowder [ Recipe by Neshikot.com ]

Ingredients:
1 bag frozen corn (16 oz)
1 onion, chopped
1 box or can of cannellini beans (14 oz)
2 tablespoon olive oil
4 teaspoons garlic, chopped
4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
2 tablespoons flour
2.5 cups milk (I use whole milk)
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 oz cream cheese, cubed

Directions:
Prepare frozen corn according to directions on the package.

Chop the onion, and drain and rinse the cannellini beans.

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat, and add onions. Cook for about 5 minutes, then add in the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes or so. Add in the broth, cannellini beans, and corn. Bring mixture to a boil. Lower heat, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes.

While soup is simmering, mix together in a bowl: flour, salt, milk, and cubed cream cheese. Add into pot, and continue stirring occasionally until it comes to a boil again. After it comes to a boil, stir continually so the soup doesn’t stick on the bottom. Cook for another few minutes, and then serve!

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