The Best 7-Layer Taco Dip Recipe {VIDEO}

The Best 7-Layer Taco Dip Recipe {VIDEO}

Summer is the best time for parties, gatherings, get-togethers or whatever you wish to call them. I am constantly preparing food in the summer months and I love it because it means we are spending time with people. I have a handful of favorite..

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Classic Hummus

Classic Hummus

I refuse to talk about the weather. I'm not talking about the weather. Minnesotans talk about the weather waaaaay too much. Nothing in this post will be about the weather...that really cold weather that creates an ice skating rink on my driveway and that makes me want to scream every time I open my front door.

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Healthy Fruit Dip

Healthy Fruit Dip

I looked at my phone this morning and was startled to see that today is July 1st. It is always strange to comprehend the passing of another month, isn't it? Summer months are especially precious to us Minnesotans, so entering into July is sad in a way. We have so many events yet to look forward to this summer, but here's saying a proper good-bye to June!

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Classic Guacamole Recipe

Classic Guacamole Recipe

I'm not a super huge fan of this week, so I'm hoping for a turn-around starting right about....um, NOW. I feel like I'm swallowing miniature razor blades, my head is pounding and I don't have any sort of appetite. With an appetite, though, I gotta tell you that this guac is THE BEST. It's the classic guac go-to recipe that Dan and I have made for years.

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Basil Sun-Dried Tomato Dip Recipe

Basil Sun-Dried Tomato Dip Recipe

I am still alive, can you believe it?! I survived 18 days on the road, in my very old but awesome car, with 2 little boys by my side. We drove 3,800 miles. We met or reunited with 75 people. We visited 17 families. Fourteen of the people we saw were children with congenital heart disease, just like my oldest monkey.

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Feta Dip

Feta Dip

My little boys and I are in the middle of a very fun and long adventure. It began nearly a week ago. Since last Tuesday, we have visited six states, we have driven 1,396 miles in our old, trusty little car and we have met/reunited with 24 people. We are not even halfway done! We have so many adventures yet to experience before we head back to Minnesota.

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Kickin' Mango Crab Guacamole Recipe

Kickin' Mango Crab Guacamole Recipe

This beautiful weather is almost too much to comprehend. I'm finding that it is very difficult NOT to put on a coat when I go outside. It's been a habit for so many months! And just when I break that habit, the cold front will blow in. It looks like it's going to be in the 30s again by the weekend.

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Creamy Vegetable Dip

Creamy Vegetable Dip

2012 brought a strangely mild winter, and I longingly think back to what a gift that was.

Our current reality:

Barely making it down the driveway in one piece while walking my kindergartener to the bus.

Sliding backwards down the driveway while the occupants of my son's school bus watch me make a fool of myself.

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White bean dip with parsley

Fresh and delicious, and it's leftovers can be used for all sorts of interesting things.

The past few days have brought a combination of snow, sleet, rain, gloom and more gloom. Last night Dan and I got out of the house for a bit, and these huge heavy raindrops that seemed to be the size of marbles fell on us. This morning we woke up to to a heavy blanket of snow covering the ground. And now I can hear that wet, thick snow melting outside, forming puddles that I'm sure will freeze in a few hours. Who knows what tomorrow will bring! Raining cheeseburgers?! Such is life in Minnesota. 

Two weekends ago, back when it was sunny and warm and spring-like, I made this white bean dip as an appetizer for Elijah's birthday party. It took me almost no time to make it, and I loved it even more than I thought I would. It was fresh and delicious, and I used the leftovers for all sorts of interesting things. I sandwiched it in between cheese slices, I used it as a taco ingredient and as a dip for whatever was in our refrigerator, including pickles and carrots. 

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Add 3 cloves of finely minced garlic and cook, stirring, for 3-4 minutes, or until the garlic is golden.

In a medium bowl, combine:

Sauteed garlic

Two 15.5-oz. cans cannellini beans, drained

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 tablespoons fresh thyme, finely chopped

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Mix well and mash with a potato masher. You will want to retain some of the lumpiness for texture. This is why I didn't process it in a food processor. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

In a food processor (preferably a mini), combine:

1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley

3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Process until smooth. Before serving the dip, pour the olive oil-parsley mixture over top. Serve with crackers, chips or veggies.

Enjoy!

Dan's Buffalo Wings and Blue Cheese Dressing

Dan's Buffalo Wings and Blue Cheese Dressing

Have I mentioned how wonderful my husband is? Coincidentally, today is Valentine's Day, so it is the perfect time to proclaim that. He really is. There are so many things I love about Dan and there are so many things he does to ensure I remain a happy mother, wife and human being. I could insert my list here, but I'm afraid I would get a bit wordy.

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Spicy Chickpea Salad Recipe

Combine fresh tasty vegetables with chickpeas in a protein packed salad. Each crunchy bite offers a scrumptious filling salad, side dish or filler to a wrap. This colorful salad that brings summer to life in any season!

Fresh-ingredient salads rock. They're pretty and fresh and tasty and versatile. My husband and I make a killer fresh salad that rivals this one, and I'll share it before summer arrives. By the way, where is summer? We got teased with a bit of warm weather last week, so now the cold and snow and freezing rain are even harder to swallow. I'm not convinced that summer will ever welcome us into her warm embrace.

This colorful salad helps me to believe that it might happen, though. It makes me think of lunches outside with my boys as we sit barefoot on the grass, wiping beads of sweat from our foreheads. Mmmmmmmm.

Back to my cold reality known as Minnesota.

If you, too, enjoy tricking yourself into believing it is summer when it is in fact not, make this salad! My family loved it and the entire batch was gone within 24 hours, despite the lack of warm weather.

HOW TO PREPARE SPICY CHICKPEA SALAD

A salad that will make a healthy choice delicious and unforgettable!

STEP 1 -

Drain 2 cans of chickpeas and place them in a medium bowl.

STEP 2 -

Add 1 tomato diced, 1/2 cup diced cucumber, half of a small red onion diced and half of a seeded jalapeno minced. Pour in 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon vegetable oil. Squeeze two tablespoons of fresh lemon juice in and mix in 1 teaspoon ground cumin with a quarter teaspoon cayenne pepper. If you like to mix things up, add in 1 teaspoon dried mango powder!

STEP 3 -

You can chill the salad in the refrigerator for an hour or serve it room temperature. Enjoy!

Kitchen Tips: If you want to go fresh and do as the recipe suggests, soak 1 cup of dried chickpeas in water overnight. Drain the chickpeas and bring to a boil in a large saucepan in 4 inches of water. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 2 hours, or until chickpeas are tender.

The first thing we did upon making this was throw it onto a piece of flatbread with sliced turkey and black pepper. It’s a great way to make an easy meal and stay healthy - it was delicious!

A piece of lettuce would have added a nice crunch, but that had probably been juiced, as well.

No mayo needed! It made a delicious, healthy dinner wrap.

The next day for lunch, I used it as a topping for my boring baked chicken and cottage cheese. And I ate the last of it with crackers for a snack.

I can think of about 100 other things I'd like to put it in and on and in between. Or, I wouldn't mind eating it straight from the container while having a picnic lunch with my family, the beating sun making the tops of our heads hot.

Ahhhhh, a girl can dream.

SPICY CHICKPEA SALAD

spicy chickpea salad

A colorful salad that brings summer alive in any season!

Contributed by Megan Porta from pipandebby.com.

Published Mar 23, 2011

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Serves: 4

Total time: 2 hr 15 min plus overnight soaking

SpicyChickpeaSalad"

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried chickpeas (about 5 oz), soaked overnight and drained
  • 1 tomato, cut into ½-inch dice
  • ½ cup diced cucumber (1/2 inch)
  • ½ small red onion, finely diced
  • ½ jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried mango powder, optional
Instructions:
  1. In a large saucepan, cover the chickpeas with 4 inches of water. Bring to a boil and simmer over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 2 hours; drain.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the tomato, cucumber, red onion, jalapeno, olive oil, vegetable oil, lemon juice, cumin, cayenne pepper and mango powder. Add the chickpeas and season with salt. Serve the chickpea salad at room temperature or slightly chilled.

Cheese-Topped Guacamole Recipe

A fresh, zingy flavor that will make it difficult to stop eating!

Guacamole recipes are not something I typically seek out. I have my favorite guac recipe, so why look any further? Making the recipe highlighted in this post has taught me a valuable lesson: Don't settle! Don't assume there isn't something better out there! This, of course, does not apply to my marriage because there is no man better for me than my husband. But with guac? I'm sad that I settled for so long!

This guacamole recipe was amazing! It had a fresh, zingy flavor that made it difficult for me to stop eating.

I'm so happy to have found you, new guac!

Cheese Topped Guacamole

A fresh, zingy flavor that will make it difficult to stop eating!

Contributed by Megan Porta from pipandebby.com.

Published Feb 16, 2011

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Serves: 4-6

Total time: 30 min

CheeseToppedGuacamole"

Ingredients:

  • 2 Hass avocados, diced
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • ¼ small red onion, minced
  • ¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped mint leaves
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup shredded queso Oaxaca or Monterey Jack
  • Tortilla chips, for serving
Instructions:
  1. In a shallow bowl, mix the avocados, tomato, onion, cilantro, mint, jalapeno and lime juice; season with salt and pepper. Melt the cheese in a microwave-safe bowl, pour over the guacamole and serve with tortilla chips.

Creamy Onion Dip Recipe

Mix together this creamy, flavorful sour cream based dip. Blue cheese and onion soup mix blended together makes a simple, yet delicious way to enjoy fresh vegetables! You can also dip a cracker or pretzel in. Guaranteed to be devoured!

My husband and I have a common love of dips. Slow Cooker Hot Corn Dip or Zingy Black Bean Dip, you name it we want to try it! It is one of the first things we discovered that we both enjoyed, along with skydiving, kissing and margaritas. Not all together. Well, dips and margaritas go together (we have even managed to make skydiving and kissing go together, ha!). When we were first dating, we made a lot of different dips and we would sit out on my patio and eat and talk until the sun went down. Aaaaahhhh, those were the days.

The appetizer/dip section of our personal recipe book is pretty extensive, but we are always looking for things to add to it. We recently discovered this simple, yet delicious little dip that tastes wonderful with chips, crackers and veggies alike.

How long does onion dip last?

The great thing about onion dip is that it is great the first day but also tastes even (almost) better the second day. You can seal this in a air-tightcontainer for about 2 weeks in the fridge.

Do I have to use sour cream for my dip?

There are many different recipes that use other bases for this dip. This is just one and it’s really tasty. A plain yogurt would also work.

It is a perfect party staple and it is guaranteed to get devoured. Baby carrots will undoubtedly be found scraping the sides of the bowl, searching for every last morsel of dip yumminess.

Creamy onion dip

Simple yet delicious! Guaranteed to be devoured!

Contributed by Megan Porta from pipandebby.com.

Published Jan 27, 2011

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Serves: 14

Total time: 10 min

CreamyOnionDip"

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp. dry onion soup mix
  • ½ cup crumbled bleu cheese
  • Snipped fresh parsley
  • Assorted vegetable dippers (baby carrots, cherry tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, pepper strips)
Instructions:
  1. In a medium bowl, stir together sour cream and dry soup mix. Stir in bleu cheese. If desired, cover and chill for up to 48 hours. Sprinkle with parsley just before serving and serve with vegetable dippers.