Tag Archives: Mozzarella

Bruschetta Chicken Parmesan

Made in one pot, in under 30 minutes, this fresh and flavorful Bruschetta Chicken Parmesan recipe is a delicious, quick and easy dinner dish!

Tracking Pixel
Bruschetta Chicken Parmesan Recipe

When it comes to comfort food, I think of recipes I grew up with in Oklahoma, like biscuits and gravy, mac and cheese and my Dad’s fried chicken, but now living a healthier lifestyle in California, I’ve had to redefine comfort food.

Today, I’ve partnered up with my friends at Foster Farms to share one of my New Comfort Food favs!

New comfort food to me is incorporating some of the aspects of the old comfort food favs in new, healthier, yet still totally delicious, ways!

For example, using spaghetti squash instead of pasta in Mac & Cheese, like in this recipe for Cheesy Jalapeno Popper Spaghetti Squash, or going the other direction and using butternut squash to make the sauce in Mac & Cheese creamier with the use of less cheese, like I did in this recipe for Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese.

Read the full post here!

One Pot Eggplant Parmesan

One Pot Eggplant Parmesan Recipe

When I mentioned that I was on a “one pot recipe kick” earlier this week, I wasn’t kidding!

Read the full post here!

Bruschetta Cheese Dip

Bruschetta Cheese Dip Recipe

This recipe is the result of an almost accident.

When I was home over the holidays, my Dad was making cheese dip (Velvetta + Rotel, an Oklahoma staple when eating Tex-Mex!), he reached in the refrigerator to grab a tupperware container of rotel and he accidentally grabbed the tupperware of leftover bruschetta.

He realized before he actually added it to the bowl of Velvetta, but then I got an idea, what if I made an Italian version of “cheese dip” with bruschetta instead of Rotel and a combination of cream cheese and mozzarella instead of Velvetta?!

Well, I tried it, and I loved it, so today I’m sharing it with you!

Read the full post here!

Pancetta Pear Pizza

Pancetta Pear Pizza Recipe

On my adventure to Seattle back in August, I ate at a great little pizza spot called Serious Pie on Pike Street.

Their special of the day was Pancetta Pear Pizza, it sounded delicious, so I gave it a try! And delicious it was!

Of course, I had to come home and recreate the recipe , so today I’m sharing my version of their serious-ly delicious pie!

Read the full post here!

Gluten Free Baked Cheese Bites

Gluten Free Baked Cheese Bite Recipe

How delicious are fried cheese sticks?!  Oozing with cheese on the inside and crispy on the outside, totally tasty, but totally not healthy, so I took this appetizer and made it healthier and gluten-free!

Read the full post here!

Crispy Eggplant & Prosciutto Caprese Salad

Crispy Eggplant & Prosciutto Caprese Salad Recipe

Ever since I created the Stacked Beet Salad on Little Leopard Book in March, I’ve had the idea to create another stacked dish of sorts with Eggplant Parmesan.

I ended up with a quick and easy eggplant parm of sorts that I paired with one of my favorite salads of all time, the caprese salad.

Read the full post here!

Mashed Potato & Bacon Pizza

Mashed potato & bacon pizza is an absolutely delicious combo with the creamy potatoes & crunchy bacon, all topped off with mozzarella & parmesan cheese!

Mashed Potato & Bacon Pizza

In continuation with “Thanksgiving Leftover Week” on the blog, I’m sharing a new pizza recipe that might seem a little strange at first, but don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!

One of my favorite pizzerias downtown San Diego, Basic, introduced me to mashed potato and bacon pizza almost 10 years ago and I’ve been hooked ever since!

Pizza: good, mashed potatoes: good, bacon: good, cheese: good, the combination: GREAT!

Read the full post here!

Italian Enchiladas

Italian Enchiladas

On the blog, I’m always looking for ways to switch up traditional dishes.

One way I love to do this is by taking a traditional Italian dish and making it Mexican. Have you checked out my Mexican Stuffed Shells or Mexican Manticotti? Both super scrumptious and both Mexican twists on traditional Italian dishes.

Read the full post here!

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip

Today I have another new recipe from my Little Italy Housewarming Party. These days I couldn’t possibly throw a party without a recipe involving buffalo sauce! For this party I transformed my beloved Buffalo Chicken Dip into an Italian masterpiece!

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip

I started by replacing the original cheeses of cheddar and blue with mozzarella and parmesan.  I also added Italian dressing to the buffalo chicken for an extra Italian kick!  I then topped the dip with sliced pepperoncinis for a bit more spice!

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup Franks Red Hot Buffalo Sauce
  • 1/2 cup Italian dressing
  • 16 oz cream cheese
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
  • 1/4 cup sliced pepperoncinis

Start by pressure cooking then shredding the chicken breasts.  Next, toss the chicken with the buffalo sauce and Italian dressing.

buffalo sauce, franks red hot, chicken, shredded, italian dressing

Begin putting the dip together by placing the cream cheese in the bottom of a deep casserole dish. I used my 2 quart Longaberger casserole dish which is perfect for this recipe.

Cream Cheese, Buffalo chicken, dip, italian, buffalo sauce, chicken, recipe, food, appetizer

Next, add the shredded Italian buffalo chicken.

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip

Finally, top with the mozzarella and parmesan.

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip Recipe

Place in the oven at 350° for 20-25 minutes.

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip Nachos

Remove from the oven and top with the sliced pepperoncinis.

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip

The dish can be served with chips for dipping or placed on a sliced baguette!

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip with Pepperoncinis

I chose both because, well, I like options!

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip

♣ Vegetarian Option: Substitute “veggie crumbles” for the shredded chicken.

♦ Gluten Free Option: This recipe is gluten-free when served with gluten-free bread or chips on the side for dipping.

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Serving Size: 6-8

Italian Buffalo Chicken Dip

Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup Franks Red Hot Buffalo Sauce
  • 1/2 cup Italian dressing
  • 16 oz cream cheese
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
  • 1/4 cup sliced pepperoncinis

Instructions

  1. Start by pressure cooking or boiling, then shredding the chicken breasts.
  2. Next, toss the chicken with the buffalo sauce and Italian dressing.
  3. Begin putting the dip together by placing the cream cheese in the bottom of a deep casserole dish.
  4. Next, add the shredded Italian buffalo chicken.
  5. Finally, top with the mozzarella and parmesan.
  6. Place in the oven at 350° for 20-25 minutes.
http://whitneybond.com/2012/09/12/whats-for-lunch-italian-buffalo-chicken-dip/

Italian Baked Potato Soup

Italian Baked Potato SoupFor my Housewarming party last weekend  I went with a new menu planning approach.  I went to the grocery store with no list, no ideas and simply let the ingredients do the planning for me.

I arrived home with two giant bags of potatoes. Potatoes are an excellent way to feed a lot of people on a budget. One three-pound bag of potatoes was $.99.  You just don’t see those kind of prices anymore!

Then it was time to decide what I was going to do with those potatoes! I knew I wanted to make a couple of crockpot recipes for the party as they’re easy to put on in the morning and ready when guests arrive. That was when I got the idea for baked potato soup.  Of course it had to be Italian style as that was the theme of the party!

Italian Baked Potato Soup

The result was a creamy, rich, flavorful soup that would be perfect for upcoming fall evenings and cold winter weekends!

Italian Baked Potato Soup IngredientsIngredients

  • 3 lbs potatoes
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 10 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp rosemary
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • ½ cup diced pancetta
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese

Start by dicing the potatoes into cubes.

Italian Baked Potato Soup RecipeNext, add the potatoes, onions and garlic into the crock pot.

Italian Baked Potato Soup Recipe

Then pour in the chicken stock.  There should be just enough chicken stock to cover the potatoes.

Italian Baked Potato Soup Recipe

Next add in the thyme and rosemary.

Italian Baked Potato Soup Recipe

Cook on high for 4-5 hours or until potatoes are soft when poked with a fork.

Ladle out 2 cups of the chicken stock.

Italian Baked Potato Soup RecipePour in the milk, sour cream and butter and blend with an immersion blender or hand mixer.

Italian Baked Potato Soup RecipeStir in the mozzarella, parmesan and pancetta.

Italian Baked Potato Soup RecipeCook on low for an additional 2 hours.

Italian Baked Potato Soup Recipe

This is one of those recipes that makes the whole house smell like rosemary thyme amazingness!

Italian Baked Potato SoupLets zoom in…

Italian Baked Potato Soup

… then dig in!

Italian Baked Potato Soup

♣ Vegetarian Option: Omit the pancetta and replace the chicken stock with vegetable stock to make this recipe vegetarian.

♦ Gluten Free Option: This recipe is gluten-free.

Chopped Challenge Thursday: Mozzarella, Thyme, Sun Dried Tomatoes and Rhubarb

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto

It’s that time of the week again, time for “Chopped Challenge Thursday”!

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risottoThis week the first four responses came from Miss Muffet Bond (yes, my Mom!) with Mozzarella, Amanda Kamermayer with Thyme, Liz Ragland with Sun Dried Tomatoes and technically the fourth came from DeAndre Matthews with Kumquats.  Unfortunately kumquats don’t come into season until November, so I had to go with my number five response from Amy Black with Rhubarb.

I had already decided on a Kumquat Thyme Chicken with Sun Dried Tomato and Mozzarella Risotto when Rhubarb came into my life.  Now what? I decided to stick with the plan yet replace the kumquat with lemon and top the chicken with the rhubarb.  I cooked the rhubarb in red wine vinegar, brown sugar and lemon to give it a sweet, tart and acidic bite on top of the chicken.  The result ended up being so delicious, I was actually glad I was thrown that Rhubarb curve ball in the last hour!

The final result of “Chopped Challenge Thursday” Week Two: Lemon Thyme Chicken topped with a Rhubarb Date Chutney on a bed of Sun Dried Tomato Mozzarella Risotto

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto, recipe, food, Italian

Ingredients

Lemon Thyme Chicken

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lemon (juiced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (crushed)
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 large chicken breasts

Rhubarb Date Chutney

  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 lb rhubarb (sliced thin)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1/2 cup dates (pitted and chopped)

Sun Dried Tomato Mozzarella Risotto

  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 cups arborio rice
  • 6-7 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil (chopped)

Start by making the marinade for the chicken.  Combine the first 6 ingredients in a small mixing bowl. Pour over the chicken in a large Ziploc bag or shallow dish.

Marinade, Lemon, Thyme, Chicken, Olive Oil, GarlicCoat well then place in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes.  Next, begin making the chutney.

Start by bringing the red wine vinegar, water and brown sugar to a simmer.  Next, add the rhubarb.

Red Wine, Vinegar, Brown Sugar, Rhubarb, ChutneySimmer for 8-10 minutes or until the rhubarb has softened.  Next, mix in the chopped dates, lemon juice and thyme sprigs.  Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Red Wine Vinegar, Brown Sugar, Lemon, Thyme, Date, Rhubarb, Chutney, RecipeNow, it’s time to throw that chicken on the grill! The grill should be heated to medium and chicken should be cooked 10-12 minutes per side.

Chicken, Grilling, Recipe, Lemon, Thyme, Olive oil, lemon juice, garlicWhile the chicken is grilling, it’s time to get going on the risotto.

Start by bringing the chicken stock to a boil in a large sauce pan.  On the next burner heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook down for 5-7 minutes.

onions, olive oil, garlic, chicken stock, risotto, recipe

Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute. Next, add the rice and cook for 1-2 minutes.

onion, rice, risotto, garlic, olive oil, recipeNow start adding the chicken stock in one ladle at a time.

risotto, rice, chicken stock, how to, recipe, garlic, olive oilAs soon as the rice has absorbed all of the liquid, add another ladle of chicken stock.  Continue this process for the next 15-20 minutes or until the rice is soft and the risotto is creamy. Continue stirring throughout the process so that the rice does not stick to the bottom of the pan and burn.

Don’t be scared of risotto, it’s not hard to make, it just takes some love and attention (like me, hehe!)

Taste the risotto as you go, if you run out of chicken stock and it still isn’t to your creamy, delicious standards, don’t fret, just add water to the boiling pot and ladle that in until the risotto is perfect. You will know,  I did a little happy dance when I tasted mine and it was perfect!

Also, don’t forget about the chicken on the grill while making the risotto.  It only needs to be flipped once, so I give you permission to leave the risotto unattended for 60 seconds to flip the chicken!

To finish the risotto add in the salt, pepper, cheeses, sun-dried tomatoes and basil.

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risottoStir to combine well.

At this time the chicken should have those perfect grill marks and be ready to go.

Chicken, Lemon, Thyme, Garlic, Olive Oil, Grill, Recipe, Food

Plate up the dish by placing the risotto on the side or under the chicken breast, then spoon the sauce from the chutney over the chicken, it gives it an amazing juiciness.  Next, place the chutney on top of the chicken and serve!

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto

I’m loving the results of these Chopped Challenges, I could definitely eat this dish over and over again!

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto, recipeIf rhubarb is out of season or not available in your area, tart apples can be substituted.

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto♣ Vegetarian Option: Use vegetarian chicken breast substitutes and vegetable stock instead of chicken stock.

♦ Gluten Free Option: Since rice is naturally gluten-free, so is risotto, that makes this entire recipe gluten-free!

Caprese Quesadilla

Italian quesadilla, caprese, recipes, food, vegetarian quesadilla, quesadilla, tomato basil quesadilla

While I do love all types of food from Mexican to Thai and Brazillian to French, Italian will always have a large place in my heart. Sometimes I like to take a dish from another country and make it into an Italian masterpiece, such as this recipe, the Caprese Quesadilla.

Ingredients (serves 1)

  • 1 flour tortilla
  • 2 roma tomatoes
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup basil
  • 1 cup marinara sauce

Start by slicing the roma tomatoes and topping the flour tortilla with the mozzarella cheese and sliced tomatoes.

Next, top with the basil and parmesan cheese.

Then fold the tortilla in half and place over medium heat on the stove top. Brown on the first side then flip.

Heat up the marinara sauce while the quesadilla is cooking. Once browned on both sides remove from the skillet and cut into slices.

Italian quesadilla, caprese, recipes, food, vegetarian quesadilla, quesadilla, tomato basil quesadilla

Serve with marinara sauce on the side for dipping.

Italian quesadilla, caprese, recipes, food, vegetarian quesadilla, quesadilla, tomato basil quesadilla

A delicious new way to eat a traditional mexican dish, Italian style!

Italian quesadilla, caprese, recipes, food, vegetarian quesadilla, quesadilla, tomato basil quesadilla

♣ Vegetarian Option: This recipe is vegetarian.

Butternut Squash and Mozzarella Salad

This roasted butternut squash and mozzarella salad is drizzled in a balsamic vinegar reduction for a sweet, delicious, gluten free and vegetarian salad made in under 45 minutes!

Balsamic Vinegar Mozzarella Squash Salad

Today’s lunch was inspired by a lovely salad I had at the fabulous La Piazza Ristorante Italiano at The Grove.

Butternut Squash Mozzarella Salad

The salad is sweet, salty and Italian, so pretty much a combination of all of my favorite things!

Butternut Squash and Mozzarella Salad Ingredients

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • 12 oz butternut squash
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnut pieces
  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 oz mozzarella cheese balls

Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees, then prepare the butternut squash.

I am fortunate enough to live within walking distance to Trader Joes (which is pretty apparent in all of my ingredient shots!) so I purchased pre-cut ready-to-go butternut squash cubes.  If you aren’t so fortunate (holler to my Oklahoma peeps!) just buy a couple of medium size squash and cube them yourself. Place them on a baking sheet (I like to line with foil bc I HATE to do dishes and it prevents them from sticking to the baking sheet so easier clean up!)

Drizzle the olive oil over the top.

Roasted Butternut Squash

Next, sprinkle with salt, pepper and cinnamon.

Cinnamon Roasted Butternut Squash

Then on to my favorite part… BROWN SUGAR!  I feel that everything in life would be better if it had a little brown sugar involved!

Brown Sugar Cinnamon Butternut Squash

Now the squash is ready to go in the oven for 25-30 minutes. Toss them about half way through.

While the squash is roasting prepare the balsamic reduction for drizzling over all of this yummy salad! Heat a skillet over medium-high heat then add 1 cup of balsamic vinegar to the skillet, followed by 2 crushed garlic cloves. Bring it to a boil then lower the temperature and allow it to reduce by half.

Next, toast the walnuts.

Once again, I bought already chopped walnut pieces from Trader Joes, but if you have whole walnuts just give them a nice chop and you’re ready to go!

Throw these on some foil on a baking sheet and in to the oven for 3-4 minutes, these little babies toast up quick in the 400 degree oven!

Once the squash and walnuts are out of the oven and the balsamic is reduced it’s time to put it all together. Use tongs to move the squash on to a plate in a nice little pile, then top each pile of squash with 4-5 mozzarella balls, next sprinkle a few toasted walnuts on top, then it’s time for that yummy, syrup-y, balsamic reduction goodness to get drizzled all on top!  Your plate should end up looking something like this ↓

But are those two plates I see?!??!

Yes those are two plates of deliciousness you see!  So if you are thinking back to yesterdays blog and thought “didn’t she say she experimented with cooking at lunch because she was only cooking for herself” why yes, yes I did say that so now I guess I’m a liar, but all in good reason!!

Time to introduce my best friend Erin, she’s the kind of girl who will drink a case of bud light with you and enjoy an enormous burrito all while wearing 5-inch heels and approximately 68 pieces of jewelry, needless to say she is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!  Well I had the fortune of feeding her lunch today after she arrived home early from a work trip and had the day off! Watch as she intently stares at her food, raising her fork in anticipation of that first magical bite:

And here she goes… time to dig in!

Mmm delicious!  Definitely recommend this dish for a great appetizer or lunch salad, or I was thinking I might skewer a ball of mozzarella between two pieces of the roasted butternut squash and drizzle with the balsamic reduction for cocktail parties! Who wants to come to my next cocktail party now, huh? Yeah I know you do 🙂

♣ Vegetarian Option: This recipe is vegetarian.

♦ Gluten Free Option: This recipe is gluten-free.

Butternut Squash and Mozzarella Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Serving Size: 2

Butternut Squash and Mozzarella Salad

Ingredients

  • 12 oz butternut squash
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnut pieces
  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 oz mozzarella cheese balls

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees, then prepare the butternut squash.
  2. Place the butternut squash on a baking sheet then drizzle the olive oil over the top.
  3. Next, sprinkle with salt, pepper, cinnamon and brown sugar.
  4. Place the squash in the oven for 25-30 minutes, toss half way through cooking.
  5. While the squash is roasting prepare the balsamic reduction.
  6. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat then add 1 cup of balsamic vinegar to the skillet, followed by 2 crushed garlic cloves.
  7. Bring to a boil then lower the temperature and allow it to reduce by half.
  8. Next, toast the walnuts by placing them on a baking sheet and in to the oven for 3-4 minutes.
  9. Use tongs to move the squash on to a plate, then top the squash with 4-5 mozzarella balls, next sprinkle a few toasted walnuts on top, then drizzle with the balsamic reduction.
http://whitneybond.com/2011/08/25/whats-for-lunch-butternut-squash-and-mozzarella-salad/