recipes + food

One of my mama superpowers is that I can head-off a toddler tantrum by coming up with a baking activity with no planning. This is usually how I deploy my superpower: Dash realizes that Chris is about to leave the house and is suddenly in toddler meltdown mode. Me (with no plan whatsoever or any idea of what ingredients we have): Dash, want to bake something with mama? Dash (not convinced yet that my offer outweighs his sadness): Yeah... Me: Great! We'll make....(quickly looking in the pantry and fridge)...muffins! Dash (with a big smile and not a thought to Daddy's... Read more →


My favorite kind of Sunday is one that finds me in the kitchen, readying for the week ahead. My preferred provisions include a homemade soup for lunches and quick dinners, and a baked good, like perfect blueberry muffins, to perk up mornings at the office. Before I started my first job and effectively joined the real world I remember wanting to be the kind of home cook who makes a great soup, for some reason this equated with being an adult to me. What I've learned is that anyone can be this kind of home cook, it just takes making... Read more →


Winning meals around here are healthy, protein-filled and quick to whip up. With an added bonus, and nod to our budget, if they are also inexpensive. Enter the lentil quesadilla. Not two foods that I considered combining until recently but trust me. We always stock our fridge with the steamed lentils from Trader Joe's (healthy! versatile! keeps forever!) and recently a friend mentioned that she puts them in quesadillas as a reliable meal for her toddler. My ears instantly perked up at the mention that her two year old will eat them. When we made one at home it was... Read more →


I love homemade pizza (clearly). And a few weeks ago we upped our homemade pizza game by venturing into deep dish pizza territory. I love a thick crust pizza and this version did not disappoint. Instead of Trader Joe's pizza dough, normally our go-to, Chris makes the fabulous dough from Dinner: A Love Story. I use about two-thirds of the dough and pressed it into a 9-inch cake pan. Then, I top it Chicago-style, first slathering on sauce (Trader Joe's, naturally) and then toppings and cheese. Lately, our favorite toppings include mushrooms, marinated artichokes and jalapenos, latest pizza topping obsession.... Read more →


This recipe for vegan pad thai has become a regular in our weeknight dinner rotation and I've been meaning to share. I found this recipe after checking out The Vegan Table from the library and getting a recommendation from Steph to try the pad thai. Such good advice! There's a bit of chopping involved and some staged cooking and whisking of the sauce but once you've made this Pad Thai a couple of times it comes together really fast. We use whatever veggies we have on hand, sometimes it's just broccoli but I also love the meatiness of sauteed mushrooms... Read more →


Here's some Kelsey truth: I am a huge fan of pancakes but super picky about them. To the point that I prefer our homemade pancakes over most restaurant pancakes (this might sound familiar). What I want from a pancake is for it to be something more than the standard buttermilk variety (yaaaawn). Give me something with whole grain or an interesting flour base (buckwheat! rye!), so it's hearty and healthy and keeps me full for a while. Chris usually doesn't get excited about pancakes for this same reason. But we recently came across a whole grain, high-protein pancake recipe that... Read more →


You know I love finding little things to get excited over. And that I can turn anything into a tradition (even stuff I make up). Pizza night is the best of both AND it's delicious. Knowing that we're having pizza when I get home from work is a perfect the little zing in an otherwise ho-hum Tuesday. We order out pizza on occasion but you know what? I like our homemade pizza better! There have even been a few times that Chris has suggested we order pizza but I convinced him we shouldn't because I prefer the pizza we make... Read more →


I think I've finally found a meal planning system that works for our family and that I love. Let's bring it in for a group hug! (I've written about my quest for a perfect grocery shopping and meal system here and here and even talked about it on the podcast!) The trick for us has been to focus on preparing meal ingredients instead of a meal plan. It's a slight but significant difference. We've also found that spending some time doing meal prep on Sundays is key to easy, healthy meals throughout the week. Our meal prep this Sunday (pictured... Read more →


Can you tell I'm feeling nostalgic and emotional this week with all the posts celebrating Dashiell? Thank you for indulging me, you deserve a recipe! How about blueberry snack cake? I've baked this coconut oil blueberry snack cake (read: blueberry muffin batter baked in a cake pan) many a Sunday lately. Starting off the week with a homemade baked good at the ready is always a good way to start a week in my book. Dash loves this cake (points and says, "bah!" when he spies it) and a toasted slice makes a great on-the-way-to-work or mid-morning snack. I adapted... Read more →


Eating salads for dinner more often is something I've been aspiring to do for a long time. I love the idea of eating salads for dinner. I even love actually eating salads...at restaurants. But making salads at home that I'm excited to eat happens rarely...until recently. I figured out something that has taken us from eating salads almost never to eating them regularly at dinner. Are you ready for this? It's whole hearts of romaine. That's it. Buying hearts of romaine and having them on hand has been the key factor to our recent salad craze. I used to always... Read more →