65 Super Bowl Snacks for the Ultimate Football Party

These game day snacks are guaranteed to be fan favorites.

Some people get really into the Super Bowl, especially if their team is playing. Some people are just there to watch the advertisements, while others are most excited about the snacks they’ll get to eat during the Super Bowl party. If you fall into that last group, you’ve probably done some thinking about what Super Bowl snacks you’ll be preparing this year. Whether you’re hosting your own party or going to someone else’s, it’s always good to have something on hand that everyone will enjoy. And if it’s something that’s easy to make in a slow cooker or Instant Pot, even better. From creamy cheese dips to classic chicken wings, these are some of the best Super Bowl recipes that will make game day a win this year, regardless of which team actually takes home the trophy.

There’s something in here for everyone, whether you’re serving a crowd of meat lovers, vegetarians, picky eaters, chocoholics, kids, or even all of the above. These snacks and appetizers will be the perfect thing to munch on during the halftime show — if they haven’t been devoured by then, of course. If your guests are of drinking age, they’ll definitely appreciate a batch of game-day cocktails, and you can also whip up some yummy mocktails for those who aren’t drinking. Win or lose, these Super Bowl snacks are sure to please any crowd when it’s time to gather around for the game.

super bowl snacks ham and brie quesadilla

Ham and Brie Quesadilla

Quesadillas are a Super Bowl staple, but this version takes them to the next level with ham, brie, and Dijon mustard.

Get the Ham and Brie Quesadilla recipe.

super bowl snacks deviled eggs

Spicy Deviled Eggs

Add a special twist to deviled eggs on game day with hot sauce and leftover ham. There won’t be any of these left by halftime.

Get the Spicy Deviled Eggs recipe.

super bowl snacks pulled pork sliders romaine slaw

Pulled Pork Sliders with Romaine Slaw

These pulled pork sliders get a sweet-and-sour upgrade thanks to the orange marmalade and cider vinegar in this recipe. Most of it comes together in a slow cooker, leaving your oven and stovetop free for other game day goodies.

Get the Pulled Pork Sliders with Romaine Slaw recipe.

super bowl snacks warm pimiento cheese dip

Warm Pimiento Cheese Dip

Pair your favorite crunchy snack with this cheesy, peppery dip for a snack your guests won’t be able to stay away from.

Get the Warm Pimiento Cheese Dip recipe.

super bowl snacks eggplant parmesan meatballs

Eggplant Parmesan Meatballs

This vegetarian take on the classic party snack will make even the biggest meat-lovers want seconds.

Get the Eggplant Parmesan Meatballs recipe.

super bowl snacks chocolate chip cookie

Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies

For a sweeter Super Bowl snack, you can’t go wrong with this classic recipe for crisp, chewy chocolate chip cookies.

Get the Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe.

Article by Christy Pina, Katina Beniaris and Jamie Ballard for Woman’s Day

Click the link below for more recipe’s

Source: 65 Super Bowl Snack Recipes – Football Party Food Ideas 2022 (womansday.com)

How to Make the Perfect Charcuterie Board

charcuterie board idea spread
MIKE GARTEN. FOOD STYLING: CHRISTINE ALBANO. PROP STYLING ALEX MATA

What is charcuterie?

Those pretty meat and cheese boards you see all over social media are a trend that actually originated with meat spreads in 15th-century France. The definition of charcuterie is “the culinary art of preparing meat products,” according to The Organic Kitchen. Charcuterie was actually developed out of necessity — it’s the way meats were preserved long before refrigeration came about.

How is charcuterie pronounced?

Pronounced shahr-ku-tuh-ree, the word “charcuterie” is French for “pork butcher shop.” The more you know!

Charcuterie boards are trending online and on social media, and for good reason: They’re pleasing to look at and even more satisfying to eat. As a party appetizer option, meat and cheese boards are extremely versatile. (For vegetarians and vegans, charcuterie boards these days don’t necessarily have to include meat or cheese, FYI.) 

What makes charcuterie boards so ideal is that they can be completely customized for any occasion or celebration, big or small, and you can put virtually anything on one. Here, you’ll find answers to all your charcuterie questions, plus tons of unique charcuterie board ideas for you to try out the next time you host — from festive platters that will feed a crowd at Christmas, to simple spreads for two that make the perfect starter for a romantic date night dinner.

Craving even more inspiration? Check out our picks for where to buy the best charcuterie boards and serving accessories online, plus Instagram accounts to follow for step-by-step tutorials, fresh ideas, and pictures that will have you making heart eyes for days. What are you waiting for? Let’s get into it.

YIELDS:8 – 10 servings PREP TIME: 30 mins TOTAL TIME: 30 mins

INGREDIENTS:

8 oz.  Gruyère cheese, sliced

8 oz. Roquefort cheese, sliced

1/4 lb. sliced mortadella

1/4 lb. sliced Genoa salami 

1/4 lb. thinly sliced prosciutto 

1 apple, thinly sliced 

4 oz. caramelized pecans 

1 package thin breadsticks 

1 bunch Concord grapes 

1/2 c. Castelvetrano olives 

1 recipe marinated mushrooms 

1 recipe spinach-artichoke dip

Dried mangoes

Dried cherries

Dried peaches

Dried plums 

8 oz. feta cheese

Garlic chile oil, for drizzling over feta 

6 oz. Gouda, sliced 

1/4 lb. soppressata, sliced 

1 bunch Champagne grapes 

1 package Lesley Stowe Raincoast Crisps Cranberry and Hazelnut Crackers  

4 oz. Fig spread 

6 oz. manchego cheese, sliced 

1 package Everything crackers 

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Arrange cheeses on 3-4 medium-sized serving boards.
  2. Set out small dishes for olives, marinated mushrooms, spinach-artichoke dip, spicy feta, and fig jam.
  3. Arrange meats alongside cheeses, folding some slices and fanning out others.
  4. Fill in the empty spaces on and around your boards with fresh and dried fruit, pecans, breadsticks, and crackers.
  5. Don’t forget to set out toothpicks, serving spoons, and cheese knives for guests to serve themselves.

What should be on a charcuterie platter?

Along with the traditional cured meat, the addition of paired cheeses and accompaniments like fruit, nuts, olives, and spreads are common in restaurants that serve charcuterie boards. Here’s what you’ll find on a traditional charcuterie board:

  • Cured meat
  • Cheeses
  • Olives
  • Nuts
  • Fruits and Veggies
  • Crackers
  • Jellies and jams

Pro tip: Using a bunch of smaller boards instead of one big one means you can move servings around to feed a crowd.

Brunch Charcuterie Board

charcuterie board ideas breakfast or brunch charcuterie board

Keep the party going in the morning with a next-level brunch! Arrange mini pancakes and waffles, bacon, hard-boiled eggs, sliced avocado, sausage, and fruit on a platter; blueberry sauce and cinnamon maple butter spread (combine 1 stick unsalted butter at room temp with 3 Tbsp maple syrup and 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon) round out the tray.

Article by Jamie Kravitz for Women’s Day. There are more boards to browse at the link below:

Source: How to Make the Perfect Charcuterie Board – Charcuterie Board Ideas (womansday.com)

Show-Stopping Appetizers

25 Show-Stopping Appetizers

Layered Sun-dried-Tomato-and-Basil Spread. Make this festive top-rated holiday dip recipe up to 3 days before the party. The colorful layers make it a fun addition to any appetizer buffet.

Layered Sun-dried-Tomato-and-Basil Spread Recipe | MyRecipes

Serve this spicy beer-cheese spread with crackers for a tasty game-day appetizer, or spread on buttered bread and cook in a nonstick skillet for a twist on the traditional grilled cheese sandwich.

Beer-Cheese Spread. Serve this spicy beer-cheese spread with crackers for a tasty game-day appetizer or spread on buttered bread and cook in a nonstick skillet for a twist on the traditional grilled cheese sandwich.

Beer-Cheese Spread Recipe | MyRecipes

Cranberry Meatballs

Cranberry Meatballs. Try a unique twist on a classic recipe by cooking meatballs in a decadent, cranberry, orange marmalade and soy sauce mixture.

Cranberry Meatballs Recipe | MyRecipes

22 more recipes can be found here:

Source: 25 Absolutely Amazing Appetizers | Southern Living

Holiday Desserts You Can Make Without Cream Cheese

While we must say we love to use cream cheese when making desserts and often reach for it while baking, we realize there are times when you may prefer a recipe that doesn’t call for a block. Whether you’re having trouble finding cream cheese on the shelves of the supermarket or have family members that don’t particularly love the flavor, there are still plenty of dessert recipes you can make without it. From cakes to cookies to fudge and more, there is a long list of festive dessert recipes that don’t need cream cheese to be delicious. We’ve rounded up 21 of our best Christmas dessert ideas you can make this year without cream cheese. 

Red Velvet Cake Crinkle Cookies

These crinkle cookies are rich, cakey, and slightly fudgy—kids will love them and adults will, too. Plus, there’s a surprise here. These treats are coated in a snowy layer of powdered sugar, just like classic crinkle cookies, but inside they’re more like velvety chocolate cake (with white chocolate chips!) than fudgy brownies. To ensure they have a nice deep hue, use gel food coloring rather than liquid. The latter won’t tint the batter as well.

Recipe: Red Velvet Cake Crinkle Cookies | Southern Living

Christmas Fudge

Christmas Fudge

Among the most beloved holiday treats, fudge holds pride of place in gifted Christmas tins and on holiday party dessert tables. Make no mistake, the diversity of fudge flavors is endless, but when it comes to Christmas Fudge, we have the firm belief that simple and classic chocolate fudge is almost always a better choice than anything elaborate and novel. Our recipe makes the most of bittersweet and unsweetened baking chocolate by letting their flavor stand on their own while including a few other ingredients to enhance the richness and the silkiness of the fudge itself. Sweetened condensed milk and butter are used to transform the melted chocolate into a sweetened and milky ganache, while the salt, espresso powder, and vanilla compliment the flavor of the chocolate and make the depths of that flavor more pronounced. The secret ingredient in this recipe is the corn syrup which prevents any crystal formation in the fudge and allows the finished product to be perfectly smooth with a slight chew rather than a crumbly, powdery, and altogether disappointing piece of crystalized fudge. To keep with the theme of simplicity, the decoration for this fudge is a mix of red, green, and white sprinkles that lend a delightful crunchy contrast to the velvety texture of the fudge. Finally, the flake salt called for in the recipe is optional, but when used, it enhances the fudge squares with a subtle saltiness while also adding the visual appeal of flaky crystals—taking something that looks almost like a kid’s treat at Christmas and elevating it to something fun and sophisticated.

Recipe: Christmas Fudge Recipe | Southern Living

Old Fashioned Gingerbread

Brown Sugar-and-Ginger Whipped Cream

Nothing makes a house smell more like Christmas than the sweet and spicy aroma of a freshly baked pan of gingerbread. We’re not talking about the crisp cookies or the houses covered in icing and candy. The taste of those holiday delights just can’t compare to a slice of tender, richly spiced gingerbread cake. The practice of baking and sharing gingerbread originated in Europe several hundred years ago and then made its way to the colonial South as families immigrated to the region and brought their recipes and traditions with them. Ginger from Asia and dried spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, allspice, and cloves arrived by ship into Southern ports and traveled inland because they were easy to transport and store. Whole dried spices kept well and retained their flavor and aroma for months. When combined with affordable sweeteners (like molasses or honey) and farmstead staples (such as butter and eggs), gingerbread could be made by home bakers when more expensive ingredients were not an option, which is why it became a wildly popular dessert. If you don’t have all the ground spices on hand, you can substitute two teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice along with the black pepper.

Recipe: Old Fashioned Gingerbread Recipe | Southern Living

Article By Jenna Sims for Southern Living©

There are 18 more recipes here:

Holiday Desserts You Can Make Without Cream Cheese | Southern Living

Christmas Charcuterie Board

This Christmas charcuterie board is one of my favorite Christmas food boards! It’s a dessert charcuterie board full of cookies, candy, and other seasonal treats! Make this Christmas candy charcuterie board for your next holiday gathering!

WHAT IS A CHRISTMAS CHARCUTERIE?

This is it! Day 12 of my 12 Days of Christmas Cookies series! It’s been so fun sharing some of my favorite Christmas Cookie recipes with you the past 12 days, and don’t worry I’ve got lots more cookie goodness in the works coming up soon! In the meantime, I’ve got just the solution for your holiday snacking needs — this dessert charcuterie board filled with lots of cookies, candies, fruits, and everything salty, tangy, and sweet! It’s the best way to showcase all the holiday treats you’ve been working on this season, and such a fun, festive way to keep your Christmas crew happy!

10 min · 396 cals per serving · 15 servs Read full directions

  • INGREDIENTS (17)
  • NUTRITION FACTS
5Cutout Sugar Cookies
5Gingerbread Crinkle Cookies
3Christmas Cookie Cake (slices)
5Cranberry White Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
8Cinnamon Palmiers
5Chocolate-Covered Oreos
4Peppermint White Chocolate Sugar Cookies
1 cupHoliday Marshmallows
6Graham Crackers
4 ouncesWhite Chocolate Pieces
½ cupHoliday M & Ms
7Candy Canes
1 cupSugared Cranberries (see note)
2 tablespoonsJam
¼ cup sprinklesNonpareils (and/or sanding sugar)
¼ cupFrosting
addRosemary (or dried citrus, for garnish)

Nutrition

Serving: 1 serving | Calories: 396 kcal | Carbohydrates: 57 g | Protein: 3 g | Fat: 18 g | Saturated Fat: 9 g | Cholesterol: 24 mg | Sodium: 219 mg | Potassium: 35 mg | Fiber: 0.5 g | Sugar: 39 g | Calcium: 20 mg | Iron: 1 mg

by Chenée Lewis of cheneetoday.com

Source: Christmas Charcuterie Board – Dessert Charcuterie Board – Chenée Today (cheneetoday.com)

We Tasted 5 Queso Dips and This Is the Best

Growing up, cheese dip wasn’t a condiment you’d generally find in my pantry or fridge, so my early memories of queso are both few and fairly specific. The first involves my older sister and me watching Clueless on the floor of our living room, with a freshly microwaved bowl of cheese dip and a bag of Fritos between us. The others include visions of dunking cafeteria soft pretzels in plastic cups of orange goo. Ah, childhood.

These days, queso is a quintessential element of my regular burrito bowl order. But while I have opinions on which Mexican fast-food joint has the best (Chipotle and Moe’s are top contenders), it was high time I crowned the best jarred cheese dips on grocery shelves, in case I ever need to curb a craving.

Slide 2 of 6: Per 2 Tbsp (33 g): 20 calories, 1 g fat (0 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 190 mg sodium, 4 g carbs (0 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 0 g protein Spice, spice, baby! Stonewall Kitchen's Chile Con Queso is packing heat, and I'm still deciding whether or not that's a good thing. Though the ingredients list includes things like dehydrated cheese mix and veggies like tomatoes, onions, sweet green peppers, and sweet red peppers, all that comes through the flavor profile is jalapeño and chipotle pepper. In other words, the cheese in this cheese dip was sorely lacking, which makes me question its high price point.         $7.49        at Instacart       Buy Now  RELATED: Sign up for our newsletter to get daily recipes and food news in your inbox!

5. Stonewall Kitchen Chile Con Queso

Per 2 Tbsp (33 g): 20 calories, 1 g fat (0 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 190 mg sodium, 4 g carbs (0 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 0 g protein

Spice, spice, baby! Stonewall Kitchen’s Chile Con Queso is packing heat, and I’m still deciding whether or not that’s a good thing. Though the ingredients list includes things like dehydrated cheese mix and veggies like tomatoes, onions, sweet green peppers, and sweet red peppers, all that comes through the flavor profile is jalapeño and chipotle pepper. In other words, the cheese in this cheese dip was sorely lacking, which makes me question its high price point. $7.49 at Instacart

Slide 3 of 6: Per 2 Tbsp (30 g): 25 calories, 1.5 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 170 mg sodium, 2 g carbs (1 g fiber, 0 g sugar), 1 g protein As far as dairy-free cheese dips go, Siete Foods is a solid contender. The brand's Spicy Blanco Cashew Queso is made with cashews (obviously), tomatoes, nutritional yeast, onion, green bell peppers, white vinegar, jalapeños, and coconut milk powder, plus spices that, when blended together, somehow taste close to actual cheese dip. But while it's delicious, you can tell it's not actually cheese, which is why it doesn't take a top-three spot on the list. (It's still a great alternative.)         $5.99        at Instacart       Buy Now

4. Siete Foods Spicy Blanco Cashew Queso

Per 2 Tbsp (30 g): 25 calories, 1.5 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 170 mg sodium, 2 g carbs (1 g fiber, 0 g sugar), 1 g protein

As far as dairy-free cheese dips go, Siete Foods is a solid contender. The brand’s Spicy Blanco Cashew Queso is made with cashews (obviously), tomatoes, nutritional yeast, onion, green bell peppers, white vinegar, jalapeños, and coconut milk powder, plus spices that, when blended together, somehow taste close to actual cheese dip. But while it’s delicious, you can tell it’s not actually cheese, which is why it doesn’t take a top-three spot on the list. (It’s still a great alternative.) $5.99 at Instacart

Slide 4 of 6: Per 2 Tbsp (32 g): 50 calories, 3.5 g fat (0 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 250 mg sodium, 4 g carbs (0 g fiber, 0 g sugar), 1 g protein I was a little skeptical when I unscrewed the top of LOCA's potato queso jar for the first time. Its contents looked like creamy, mashed sweet potato, only yellow, and it didn't smell very appetizing. But none of that mattered after I heated a few spoonfuls up in the microwave for a minute or so and took my first bite.You'd never know this queso is completely void of cheese—it gets all of its cheesy-goodness from plant-based ingredients, like potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, green chile, nutritional yeast, and various spices. The mild flavor isn't spicy but is still rich with flavor, and, when warmed, it has the consistency of traditional queso. Drizzle this over nachos, and carnivores will never know the difference.RELATED: The Best Nachos in Every State         $25 for 2 jars        at Loca       Buy Now  RELATED: The easy guide to cutting back on sugar is finally here.

3. LOCA Mild Plant-Based Potato Queso

Per 2 Tbsp (32 g): 50 calories, 3.5 g fat (0 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 250 mg sodium, 4 g carbs (0 g fiber, 0 g sugar), 1 g protein

I was a little skeptical when I unscrewed the top of LOCA’s potato queso jar for the first time. Its contents looked like creamy, mashed sweet potato, only yellow, and it didn’t smell very appetizing. But none of that mattered after I heated a few spoonfuls up in the microwave for a minute or so and took my first bite.

You’d never know this queso is completely void of cheese—it gets all of its cheesy-goodness from plant-based ingredients, like potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, green chile, nutritional yeast, and various spices. The mild flavor isn’t spicy but is still rich with flavor, and, when warmed, it has the consistency of traditional queso. Drizzle this over nachos, and carnivores will never know the difference.

$25 for 2 jars at Loca

Slide 5 of 6: Per 2 Tbsp (31 g): 40 calories, 2.5 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 280 mg sodium, 3 g carbs (0 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 1 g protein Target's Good & Gather Salsa Con Queso looks like light orange queso but tastes like white queso. It's very creamy and solidifies at the top when left alone for a few minutes (and when I say "few" I mean two or three at most), which had me reminiscent of the cheese cups school cafeterias serve with soft pretzels.Though it's mild, the cheese dip does have a spice that hits the back of your throat after the fact and makes your breath feel like a kind of jalapeño-zested smoke. It's also marketed as a "salsa con queso," but it's definitely the other way around. It has a cheese base, with subtle flecks of vegetables like bell pepper throughout. This is an overall solid pick for chip and pretzel dipping.         $2.49        at Target       Buy Now

2. Good & Gather Salsa Con Queso

Per 2 Tbsp (31 g): 40 calories, 2.5 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 280 mg sodium, 3 g carbs (0 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 1 g protein

Target’s Good & Gather Salsa Con Queso looks like light orange queso but tastes like white queso. It’s very creamy and solidifies at the top when left alone for a few minutes (and when I say “few” I mean two or three at most), which had me reminiscent of the cheese cups school cafeterias serve with soft pretzels.

Though it’s mild, the cheese dip does have a spice that hits the back of your throat after the fact and makes your breath feel like a kind of jalapeño-zested smoke. It’s also marketed as a “salsa con queso,” but it’s definitely the other way around. It has a cheese base, with subtle flecks of vegetables like bell pepper throughout. This is an overall solid pick for chip and pretzel dipping.$2.49 at Target

Slide 6 of 6: Per 2 Tbsp (33 g): 40 calories, 2.5 g fat (1 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 280 mg sodium, 5 g carbs (1 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 1 g protein When I think of jarred cheese dip, I instantly think of Tostitos, and there's a reason for that: It's delicious. Not too thick and not too runny, Tostitos Salsa Con Queso boasts a bright orange hue. It's made with a Monterey Jack Cheese base (already starting off with a kick), and additional ingredients like jalapeño peppers and chili peppers really bring home the spice. The sauce itself is smooth and rich, but it does contain chunks of veggies that add to the heat. It's not what I was imagining: a cheese sauce with globs of salsa incorporated into the recipe, like Smucker's Goober Peanut Butter and Jelly. It's better.         $4.99        at Amazon       Buy Now  Read more:We Tried 5 American Cheese Brands & This Is the Best20 Best and Worst Cheeses in AmericaThe Best & Worst Snacks in America—Ranked!

1. Tostitos Salsa Con Queso (Medium)

Per 2 Tbsp (33 g): 40 calories, 2.5 g fat (1 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 280 mg sodium, 5 g carbs (1 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 1 g protein

When I think of jarred cheese dip, I instantly think of Tostitos, and there’s a reason for that: It’s delicious. Not too thick and not too runny, Tostitos Salsa Con Queso boasts a bright orange hue. It’s made with a Monterey Jack Cheese base (already starting off with a kick), and additional ingredients like jalapeño peppers and chili peppers really bring home the spice. The sauce itself is smooth and rich, but it does contain chunks of veggies that add to the heat. It’s not what I was imagining: a cheese sauce with globs of salsa incorporated into the recipe, like Smucker’s Goober Peanut Butter and Jelly. It’s better. $4.99 at Amazon

So, what’s your favorite?

Article by Julia Guerra for eatthis,notthat.com

Source: We Tasted 5 Queso Dips and This Is the Best (msn.com)

10 things I wish I knew before buying an air fryer

By olito@businessinsider.com (Frank Olito)  for Insider©

Slide 1 of 11:  My air fryer changed my cooking for the better, but there are some things I wish I knew before buying it.  The air fryer is small, so you can't cook for many people, and you can't cook multiple foods at the same time. I find that you will need a cookbook and olive oil to successfully use an air fryer.  Visit Insider's homepage for more stories. Throughout 2020, I heard many friends and people all over social media raving about their air fryers.When the holidays came around, I decided to finally find out what all the fuss was about. Instantly, I understood why so many people have fallen in love with the kitchen appliance. The air fryer became a game changer in my kitchen, allowing me to cook dinner in minutes and fry chicken, vegetables, and other foods without submerging them in unhealthy oil.Even though the appliance changed my cooking lifestyle for the better, there were still a few things about the air fryer that surprised me and that I wish I knew before I made the purchase. Read the original article on Insider
©frank olito
  • My air fryer changed my cooking for the better, but there are some things I wish I knew before buying it. 
  • The air fryer is small, so you can’t cook for many people, and you can’t cook multiple foods at the same time.
  • I find that you will need a cookbook and olive oil to successfully use an air fryer. 

Throughout 2020, I heard many friends and people all over social media raving about their air fryers. When the holidays came around, I decided to finally find out what all the fuss was about. Instantly, I understood why so many people have fallen in love with the kitchen appliance. The air fryer became a game changer in my kitchen, allowing me to cook dinner in minutes and fry chicken, vegetables, and other foods without submerging them in unhealthy oil.

Even though the appliance changed my cooking lifestyle for the better, there were still a few things about the air fryer that surprised me and that I wish I knew before I made the purchase. 

There are many different types of air fryers, and the one you choose is important.

There are a ton of air fryers on the market, but they mostly boil down to two models: a convection-oven air fryer and a basket air fryer. The first one resembles a mini toaster or convection oven. On the other hand, the basket air fryer is the more traditional air fryer that uses a drawerlike compartment to cook food.

I was not expecting there to be so many options, so I had to do a lot of research to make sure I was making the right decision. In the end, I decided to buy the Cuisinart convection-oven air fryer for $100 because it has more capabilities, like broiling, toasting, and roasting.

Air fryers can take up a lot of counter space.

Though some are small enough to fit in a cabinet, the air fryer I bought could not easily be stored away. Measuring 11.75 inches by 12 inches, my air fryer needed plenty of counter space, to my surprise. When I unboxed the new appliance, I needed to find 2 feet of counter space in my small Brooklyn apartment. Eventually, I found a spot next to my microwave that has become what I call the appliance corner.

Everything cooks so fast — sometimes too fast.

When cooking in an air fryer, most foods take less than 15 minutes to fully cook, which is always a surprise for me. Typically, I’m used to waiting 20 or 30 minutes to bake chicken breasts in the oven. While the chicken breasts bake, I typically wash the kitchen and tidy up.

Sometimes, things cook so fast that I don’t even realize they’re done. One night, I cooked a meatloaf, and it was finished in under 15 minutes. I was expecting it would take closer to 20, so I left it in there too long. That night, I had burned meatloaf for dinner.

You have to flip most foods halfway through the cooking time for an even cook.

In my air fryer, it’s difficult to get an even cooking texture. Most times, the top of the food becomes crispy and delicious, while the bottom remains soggy. For example, when I made breaded chicken cutlets, one side of them was crunchy, while the other looked mushy. 

I learned quite quickly that I had to flip the food halfway through to get the underside crispy as well. It’s not something I was used to doing with a regular oven.

Some air fryers come with a basket and a tray, and it’s confusing when you should use which.

My air fryer came with a basket and a tray. Some recipes I’ve used told me to use the tray and others told me to use the basket. When I’m not using a recipe to cook dinner, I often struggle to decide which is best to use — something I never had to struggle with before I had an air fryer. I tend to lean toward the basket when I’m attempting to fry something and the tray when I’m roasting.

Following an air-fryer cookbook — especially in the beginning — is a lifesaver.

Since my air fryer looks so much like an oven, I’ve caught myself using it like one. Instead of following a recipe, there have been a few times where I’ve just thrown food in and set the temperature to 375 degrees. In these incidences, the meal never turns out great because it’s not a typical oven. It’s an air fryer that relies on temperature and timing controls that I’m not familiar with just yet.

When I follow an air-fryer-specific recipe that tells me what to put the temperature on and how long to cook it for, the food always turns out much better.

Many air fryers are best for one to two servings and can’t really be used for big dinners.

Though the air fryer was bigger than I expected, and I struggled to find counter space for it, the space where food is cooked is quite small. I can’t imagine you can cook for a large group of people with this appliance — at least not in the model I own. You’d have to cook in batches.

For instance, some recipes I’ve followed said I should put in only two strips of chicken breasts at a time to ensure even cooking and then do a second batch.

I’d recommend staying away from the air fryer if you’re cooking for more than two people.

Similarly, you can’t cook the meat and the vegetables at the same time.

I’m used to baking chicken and vegetables on one giant sheet in the oven. That’s not possible in an air fryer because of its size.

One night I was cooking chicken, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts, and they all needed to go in the air fryer, according to their recipes. Instead of putting them all on one tray, as I would have with a traditional oven, I had to cook the chicken first, then the vegetables. By the time everything was finished cooking, the meat was cold. 

Olive oil is still necessary when cooking with an air fryer.

A common misconception is that air fryers completely eliminate the need for olive oil. The truth is that most recipes I’ve used still want me to drizzle olive oil on my food so that it will crisp up in the air fryer. But it is important to note that I’ve used significantly less olive oil with the air fryer than I would have if I traditionally fried my foods.

When the food is cooking, it’s difficult to check if it’s done.

Though my air fryer has a window, the space inside is so small that it’s difficult to see if something is cooked or not. With basket air fryers, there is no window, so it’s impossible to see how your food is doing. Instead, you have to rely solely on the timer.

Many times I’ve had to open the door, let out the precious heat, and pull out the tray just to see if something is cooked through.

Source: 10 things I wish I knew before buying an air fryer (msn.com)

What Is Soda Bread, and Do the Irish Actually Eat It?

By Ellen Morrissey  for Martha Stewart©

If you were born and raised in Ireland, soda bread is likely what you grew up eating at nearly every meal. It’s served first thing in the morning as part of a full Irish breakfast, with tea in the afternoon, and alongside beef or lamb stew or any number of other Irish specialties at dinner. Traditional soda bread has just four ingredients: flour, baking soda, salt, and buttermilk. Brown bread, made from stone-ground whole-wheat flour, is the most common loaf found on Irish tables. White soda bread is made with all-purpose white flour.a plate of food with a slice of cake on a table: Johnny Miller© Provided by Martha Stewart Living Johnny Miller

According to Darina Allen, the grande dame of Irish cooking and author of multiple books on the subject, “From earliest times, breadmaking was an integral part of daily life in almost every home…even in the poorest country cabin, fresh soda bread would have been mixed on a wooden baking board and baked on the griddle, or…over the ember of the turf fire.” Those loaves featured Irish wheat and buttermilk—either the by-product of butter making, or in the days before refrigeration, sour milk that needed to be used up. The lactic acid in the buttermilk reacts with the alkali baking soda to create carbon dioxide, which in turn causes the bread to rise. Baking soda was introduced to Ireland (where it’s known as bread soda) in the 1830s. Since then, it’s been a staple in Irish home (and restaurant) kitchens. Incidentally, historians trace the development of baking soda to Native Americans, who first used pearl ash as a way to leaven bread.

One this side of the Atlantic, what we call “Irish soda bread” is more rich and sweet, usually studded with raisins and caraway seeds. These cakey, scone-like loaves often include eggs and butter for tenderness and more flavor. It’s nearly impossible to find an accurate date when it became known as the definitive soda bread in the United States. Nevertheless, it’s been on the menu in Irish restaurants and bars on St. Patrick’s Day and sold in bakeries throughout Irish-American strongholds all year long for as long as anyone can remember. Though its overall shape and structure derive from those early Irish loaves, it bears more of a resemblance to a cake known as Spotted Dog (or Spotted Dick, not to be mistaken for the British steamed pudding of the same name). To further confuse matters, Spotted Dog is known as Railway Cake when it’s baked in a loaf pan. Good luck keeping all those names straight!

Whatever it’s called, soda bread is among the easiest, most forgiving home-baked goods, and it’s one of the quickest breads to go from mixing bowl to table. Since there’s no yeast involved, it’s nearly impossible to mess it up. In fact, the less you handle the dough, the better. As Allen explains, when it came to traditional soda bread, “it was a compliment of the highest order to be described as having ‘a light hand.'” If you’re new to bread making, you might want to start with soda bread. Martha’s take on the authentic Irish loaf—with a combination of graham and all-purpose flours filling in for the Irish whole grain, and butter added for richness—and this rye version are both heavenly served with smoked trout, strong cheeses like Cashel blue, warm bowls of hearty soup, or simply slathered with salted Irish butter. From there, you can try one of the sweeter, cakier versions.

The last step in making any loaf of soda bread is to cut a cross in the top of the dome of dough. According to Irish legend, this is to “let the devil out,” but the technique actually serves a practical purpose. The deep slash allows the dough to cook evenly from crust to inner crumb, creating the inimitable texture that American culinary icon James Beard described as “velvety.”

As for the name, the easiest way to clear up the confusion may be to simply refer to the raisin- and caraway-studded version as Irish American Soda Bread, as it’s called in the Joy of Cooking. In that most American of American cookbooks, the bread is aptly described as “richer, sweeter and more cake-like than authentic Irish soda bread, which we are assured never made the acquaintance of a raisin or caraway seed either.” Perhaps adding the “American” qualifier between “Irish” and “soda” makes saying it too much of a mouthful.

The one caveat about making soda bread from scratch is that it is best eaten on the day that it’s baked. It doesn’t keep nearly as well as yeast-risen breads. As long as you have enough good-quality butter, some nice fruit jam, and some Irish smoked salmon, however, that shouldn’t be a problem.

Source: What Is Soda Bread, and Do the Irish Actually Eat It? (msn.com)

Best Christmas Brunch Recipes

By Brittany Anas for EatThis,NotThat!

Unwrapping presents may be the main event on Christmas morning. But a delicious brunch—best enjoyed in PJs—also brings merriment to the morning. Whether you like sweet (extra syrup, please!) or savory (ham and cheese are a dream team), here are 17 brunch recipes that feel just right for Christmas morning.

Slide 2 of 18: Your muffin tins are multi-taskers. Not only can they bake your favorite muffins, but they can also make individual quiches to wow your brunch crowd. This recipe is especially great for Christmas morning because you can dice up some leftover ham from a Christmas Eve dinner, then mix in the vegetables. A generous serving of Gouda gives them a creamy, buttery bite.Get our recipe for Muffin Tin Quiches with Smoked Gouda and Ham. RELATED: Sign up for our newsletter to get daily recipes and food news in your inbox!

© Provided by Eat This, Not That!

1. Muffin Tin Quiches with Smoked Gouda and Ham

Your muffin tins are multi-taskers. Not only can they bake your favorite muffins, but they can also make individual quiches to wow your brunch crowd. This recipe is especially great for Christmas morning because you can dice up some leftover ham from a Christmas Eve dinner, then mix in the vegetables. A generous serving of Gouda gives them a creamy, buttery bite.

Slide 3 of 18: Psst, this bread pudding recipe with chocolate and sweet cherries may look and taste like dessert, but it's just as great as a brunch dish.Get our recipe for Chocolate Cherry Bread Pudding with Pistachios. And for more holiday inspiration, check out these 50 Delicious Christmas Eve Dinners So Easy They'll Cook Themselves.

© Waterbury Publications, Inc.

2. Chocolate Cherry Bread Pudding with Pistachios

Psst, this bread pudding recipe with chocolate and sweet cherries may look and taste like dessert, but it’s just as great as a brunch dish.

Slide 5 of 18: For a delicious brunch, bake this flavor-packed and filling breakfast casserole that's made with caramelized onions, baby kale, and mushrooms.Get our recipe for Breakfast Casserole. Wondering what your neighbors are eating? Don't miss The Best Christmas Recipe in Every State.

© Beth Lipton/ Eat This, Not That!

4. Breakfast Casserole

For a delicious brunch, bake this flavor-packed and filling breakfast casserole that’s made with caramelized onions, baby kale, and mushrooms.

Slide 8 of 18: Here's a genius idea: Make a charcuterie board for brunch on Christmas morning so that your family can wander in and out of the kitchen, enjoying a completely customizable and leisurely breakfast.Easy-to-assemble, a charcuterie board is a perfect place for your favorite brunch staples. The possibilities are endless, but you can start with cheeses, hard-boiled eggs, sliced ham, waffles, fruit, vegetables, and more.Get the recipe from How Sweet Eats. 

© How Sweet Eats

7. Charcuterie Brunch Boards

Here’s a genius idea: Make a charcuterie board for brunch on Christmas morning so that your family can wander in and out of the kitchen, enjoying a completely customizable and leisurely breakfast.

Easy-to-assemble, a charcuterie board is a perfect place for your favorite brunch staples. The possibilities are endless, but you can start with cheeses, hard-boiled eggs, sliced ham, waffles, fruit, vegetables, and more.

Speaking of more, to see more brunch idea’s, click below:

Source: 17 Best Christmas Brunch Recipes (msn.com)

10 Frozen Pizzas to Always Leave on Grocery Store Shelves

Article by Jennifer Maldonado  for EatThis,NotThat.com

© Provided by Eat This, Not That!

10 Frozen Pizzas to Always Leave on Grocery Store Shelves

Sometimes, all you really need is a frozen pizza to hit the spot. It’s ready in minutes and you don’t have to worry about going out to pick it up or wait for the delivery person to arrive. Plus, you don’t have to spend too much time in the kitchen like you would if you made it from scratch. But not every frozen pizza is the same. And some are worse for you than others.

So which is the worst frozen pizza out there? Well, we rounded up the 10 unhealthiest frozen pizzas you’ll find in the freezer aisle. That way, you know which pie to just skip when you’re looking for the perfect addition to your Friday night hangout in your living room.

1. Stouffer’s Three Meat French Bread Pizza

Per pizza: 460 calories, 25 g fat (9 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 1,070 mg sodium, 40 g carbs (3 g fiber, 5 g sugar), 18 g protein

These French-bread based mini pies are topped with sausage, pepperoni, and bacon, creating a small pizza that has more sodium than 12 McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets. Yikes.

2. DiGiorno Croissant Crust Three Meat

Per pizza: 2,050 calories, 110 g fat (50 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 4,200 mg sodium, 180 g carbs (10 g fiber, 20 g sugar), 85 g protein

DiGiorno took things up a notch with the introduction of its croissant crust. While it might make for a lighter, flakier pie, it’s still high in calories and sodium.

3. Red Baron Thin and Crispy Pepperoni Pizza

Per pizza: 1,170 calories, 60 g fat (30 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 3,030 mg sodium, 114 g carbs (6 g fiber, 27 g sugar), 45 g protein

Red Baron’s thin crust pies aren’t actually worse than the classic crust options. Just one slice of the Thin and Crispy Pepperoni Pizza will set you back 1,010 milligrams of sodium. The classic version? It’s still pretty scary, coming in at 810 milligrams of sodium.

4. Tombstone Original Supreme Pizza

Per 1 pizza: 1,360 calories, (28 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 3,200 mg sodium, 140 g carbs (8 g fiber, 16 g sugar), 60 g protein

The presence of peppers, olives, and onions don’t really help make things better here. This pie, which is also topped with the classic processed meats combo of sausage and pepperoni, is scary high in sodium.

5. Celeste Pizza for One, Sausage and Pepperoni

Per pizza: 400 calories, 19 g fat (9 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 900 mg sodium, 47 g carbs (2 g fiber, 3 g sugar), 10 g protein

If you thought going for the “personal pan” option would be a safer bet, this sausage and pepperoni pizza from Celeste proves otherwise. Coming in with 900 milligrams of sodium and a very long list of ingredients that includes fattening palm oil, this one gets a skip.

6. DiGiorno Bacon Me Crazy Pizza

Per pizza: 1,640 calories, 84 g fat (40 g saturated fat), 3,680 mg sodium, 136 g carbs (8 g fiber, 12 g sugar), 80 g protein

The fat and sodium in this pie are way too high! Even if you are splitting this pie, one serving alone is packing 920 milligrams of the salty stuff.

7. Red Baron Classic Crust Four Cheese Pizza

Per 1 pizza: 1,520 calories, 68 g fat (36 g saturated fat), 2,880 mg sodium, 160 g carbs (8 g fiber, 32 g sugar), 64 g protein

You might think that since this pizza is thin crust and just topped with cheese and no meats, you would in the clear. But don’t be fooled! It’s still high in calories, fat, and sodium.

8. California Pizza Kitchen BBQ Chicken Pizza

Per 1 pizza: 880 calories, 32 g fat (16 g saturated fat, 1 g trans fat), 1,940 mg sodium, 101 g carbs (4 g fiber, 27 g sugar), 47 g protein

While this pizza gets some points because the chicken it’s topped with is grilled, there are still plenty of red flags. The fact that there are a few different sugars listed on the ingredients is not the best when it comes to finding a healthier pizza option.

9. Screamin’ Sicilian Brazen Buffalo

Per pizza: 1,320 calories, 60 g fat (28 g saturated fat), 5,200 mg sodium, 124 g carbs (8 g fiber, 8 g sugar), 72 g protein

This spicy Buffalo chicken pizza is simply drowning in salt. One slice sets you back 1,300 milligrams, making the whole pie clock in at more than 5,000 milligrams. Keep in mind that The American Heart Association recommends the average person have no more than 2,300 milligrams a day of sodium, moving toward an ideal limit of no more than 1,500 milligrams. 

10. Tombstone Original 4 Meat

Per pizza: 1,480 calories, 72 g fat (32 g saturated fat), 3,640 mg sodium, 140 g carbs (8 g fiber, 16 g sugar), 68 g protein

By now, it should be clear that any pizza that is topped with multiple processed meats is going to be bad news for your waistline. And that’s all this 4 Meat pie from Tombstone is—trouble!

Source: 10 Frozen Pizzas to Always Leave on Grocery Store Shelves (msn.com)