The Feastie Blog

Feastie Friday: 21 Festive Recipes with Cranberries

Nothing says "holidays" quite like cranberries. On their own, in their raw state, cranberries are tiny, bitter little fruits, but when cooked or dried and hit with a little bit of sweetness, they're incredibly tasty! And so healthy - cranberries are full of antioxidants and vitamin C, as well as fiber and vitamin E. They have anti-inflammatory properties as well as cancer-fighting phytonutrients - suffice it to say cranberries are a good choice all-around. But back to their deliciousness - they really are one of the tastiest, most festive flavors to enjoy during the holidays. We've rounded up 21 festive recipes featuring cranberries to keep you in high holiday spirits. With everything from cocktails to pancakes and brisket, you're sure to find a cranberry recipe here that you'll love. 

1. Cranberry Orange Pancakes from Vegan Yack Attack
Cranberry Orange Pancakes from Vegan Yack Attack
Photo from Vegan Yack Attack


Broccoli Cheese Soup {Lightened Up}

I have a confession to make. I know it's not wholesome, I know it's not healthy, but the broccoli cheddar soup from Panera is SO GOOD. As in, I crave it fortnightly (I don't eat it that often, but trust me I think about it). But since it's full of stuff I'd rather not eat on a regular basis (i.e. highly processed ingredients), I figured I'd attempt to create a lightened-up, healthier version full of good stuff, like actual vegetables! I came across this recipe for broccoli cheese soup from America's Test Kitchen, and figured it was worth a shot - rarely does ATK disappoint. This soup was no exception. It's creamy and cheesy without being goopy or fatty - I tweaked it a little bit to suit my own tastes and make it vegetarian, but this recipe is stellar. No, it's not quite the same as the Panera version - but it's just as tasty, and knowing that it's healthy, wholesome, and homemade, it's much more satisfying to eat and enjoy. 

Feastie Friday: 40 Easy Recipes for Thanksgiving Leftovers

Let's face it - one of the best aspects of Thanksgiving is also the most annoying - LEFTOVERS. As in, everyone loves leftovers of their favorite delicious holiday foods, but sometimes those leftovers need a little remix. Rewarming the same food for a few days in a row gets old - so we suggest you round up all those leftovers and get creative. We've collected 40 easy recipes for your Thanksgiving leftovers, dishes that are sure to use up every last bit of that holiday dinner. Whether it's leftover cranberry sauce, pie, turkey or green beans, we've got a solution for you. And no complicated or hard-to-find ingredients - just those leftovers and a few pantry staples and you're golden. Since we shared our favorite Thanksgiving dessert recipes as well as some amazing vegetarian Thanksgiving recipes, we figure it's only fair that we help you use up those leftovers in a fun and tasty way. 

1. The Ultimate Thanksgiving Leftovers Sandwich from Cake 'n' Knife
The Ultimate Thanksgiving Leftovers Sandwich from Cake 'n' Knife
Photo from Cake 'n' Knife


Baked Acorn Squash with Chestnut, Apple, and Leek Stuffing

Admission #1: I've never cooked with chestnuts before. I've only eaten chestnuts once - Thanksgiving 2009. They were in the stuffing at Thanksgiving dinner, and I was intrigued. But apparently not intrigued enough to actually make an effort to eat them again, since it's been 4 years since my intro to the chestnut. Admission #2: I'm not a huge fan of acorn squash. I try to convince myself that I am, and I do enjoy it in some dishes, but on its own, I'm just not super excited about it. But I wanted to expand my horizons - a girl can only eat so much butternut squash (a lot - but even I have my limit with the butternut). I picked up some acorn squash and then searched for a fun way to use them - and came across this baked acorn squash with chestnuts, apples, and leeks from Food & Wine just sitting in my email inbox, waiting for me (I get their recipe emails). Stuffing - who doesn't like stuffing?! I LOVE STUFFING! So I figured putting stuffing into a roasted acorn squash would be a good way for me to enjoy said squash. The chestnuts were the only wild card here. Where does one find chestnuts? The first store I checked had canned cooked chestnuts for $16.99. No, that's not a typo. ONE SINGLE 15oz CAN IS SEVENTEEN DOLLARS. And even if I had been crazy enough to buy it, it was out of stock anyway. So guess where I found a 6.5oz vacuum-packed box of pre-cooked chestnuts? TRADER JOE'S! Heck yeah! So I took home my precious chestnuts and got to work on this stuffed squash. The stuffing is really, really good. I found myself eating it before I'd even baked it - the leeks, apples and thyme are such a great combination of flavors. The squash - that's another story. I just couldn't get into it. Everyone else that ate this loved it, said the roasted squash was great, but I guess I'm just not an acorn squash kinda girl (although I do have 1 more recipe I'm going to try...last ditch effort). So if you like acorn squash, you'll love this! And if you don't - well, give it a go, but no promises.

And if you were looking for a great vegetarian main dish for your Thanksgiving table, this is perfect! 

Feastie Friday: Thanksgiving Dessert Recipe Roundup - 27 Sweets for Your Dessert Table

Last week we gave you some vegetarian Thanksgiving inspiration - this week, we bring you sweets. We've rounded up 27 Thanksgiving dessert recipes perfect for your holiday celebration. We've got the traditional Thanksgiving favorites like apple and pumpkin pie, but this year throw caution to the wind and try something new, like pumpkin tiramisu or sweet potato donuts. Surprise your guests with fun twists on old favorites, like cranberry ginger pear pie and pumpkin pecan cheesecake. Whatever you do, however you celebrate, have an amazing Thanksgiving holiday and enjoy some utterly delicious food with friends and family! Search Feastie for more Thanksgiving recipes and inspiration - we've got thousands of recipes for every course of your holiday meal, for vegans and carnivores alike. Happy Thanksgiving! 

1. Cranberry-Ginger Pear Pie from Brown Eyed Baker
Cranberry-Ginger Pear Pie from Brown Eyed Baker
Photo from Brown Eyed Baker


Pumpkin Pecan Crisp

A few days ago I was pondering the dessert possibilities for this Thanksgiving - pumpkin pie is always on my list, as is apple crisp. Also on the list - pecan pie. And then I had this random thought out of the blue - "Why not pumpkin crisp?" I was imagining a lightly spiced crustless pumpkin pie topped with a golden, buttery, nutty crumble. I did a little poking around and found this pumpkin crisp from Sweet Anna's. It was like she'd read my mind. This is exactly what I want! I changed a few little things to suit my tastes, and was rewarded with one of the best pumpkin desserts I've ever had. It's everything you want it to be - it has all of the best elements of a pumpkin pie and a crisp/crumble in one neat little dish. This would be a great addition to your Thanksgiving dessert table, or even a fun mid-week treat. Seriously - can you go wrong with a dessert that has both pumpkin and crisp in the title? I think not. 

Feastie Friday: 21 Vegetarian Thanksgiving Recipes That Even Carnivores Will Love

Planning Thanksgiving dinner is fun and nostalgic - pulling out old favorite family recipes, getting the roasting pan ready for a huge turkey, drying out some bread for a sausage stuffing - you can almost taste the pumpkin pie! But if you're entertaining vegetarian guests, it can be a bit stressful - what do you serve vegetarians on Thanksgiving? Tofu in the shape of a turkey? Salad? If you're not used to vegetarian cooking, you may be at a loss - many of the traditional Thanksgiving dishes revolve around the turkey and other meat-based dishes. Chicken stock sneaks its way into pretty much everything - bacon, sausage, turkey and more turkey - it's a carnivore's dream. But don't stress - you can plan a completely vegetarian Thanksgiving dinner that even the carnivores will be raving about. And no, we're not talking turkey-shaped tofu (although tofu does make an appearance in this list) - we're talking real food, seasonal dishes full of traditional Thanksgiving flavors and meat-free adaptations of everyone's favorites. We've rounded up 21 vegetarian Thanksgiving recipes that even carnivores will love. Whether you're planning an entirely vegetarian meal or just need to incorporate a few vegetarian dishes into the dinner, give some of these recipes a try. Most are a fun vegetarian twist on an old favorite - your guests won't even miss the meat! 

1. Stuffed Acorn Squash with Wild Rice and Apples from My Whole Food Life
Stuffed Acorn Squash with Wild Rice and Apples from My Whole Food Life
Photo from My Whole Food Life


Healthy Creamy Avocado Dressing/Dip

We go through dressing phases - I get hung up on a certain type of homemade dressing, and that's the only one I'll make for weeks. Then I get incredibly tired of it and need to move on - time for a new dressing! This healthy creamy cilantro avocado dressing from Eating Well has been my favorite for quite a few weeks - it's still in rotation. It's good on everything - salads, sandwiches, chips, raw veggies - don't relegate this to the salad bowl! It's especially wonderful on grilled shrimp - my favorite way to eat this dressing is on a healthy grilled shrimp taco salad. Imagine a huge bowl of fresh greens topped with chopped green onion, corn, black beans, chopped tomato, grilled shrimp, and shredded pepperjack cheese, drizzled in gobs of this creamy cilantro avocado dressing. Heavenly. But like I said, don't limit this to salads - dip some pretzels in it for an after school snack, dunk some baby carrots, spread it on a wrap stuffed with veggies, spread it on toast with a fried egg - basically put it on everything. It's like guacamole in dressing form! 

Feastie Friday: 15 Apple Recipes to Get You Excited about Fall

We've already rhapsodized over pumpkin and butternut squash - it's time for apples to have their moment. Short of taking a hay ride through a pumpkin patch (which we hope you've already done), apple picking is the epitome of fall. If there's an apple orchard near you where you can pick your own - do it (check out your local farms and PYO here). Apple cider, apple cider donuts, apple pie, applesauce - just a few of the delish fall treats you can make with your apple haul. We've rounded up 15 apple recipes to get you excited about fall! These aren't your average apple recipes - um, does "apple cider maple sausage cornmeal pancakes" sound average?! If you're intrigued, read on, and take a look at the apple recipes below. We can guarantee you that apple pie panini will be making an appearance at the Feastie table soon - anyone who can combine apple pie with a grilled sandwich is brilliant in our book. And of course apples are great in savory dishes, too - salads and slaws especially. So if you get carried away and pick too many apples, no worries - try some of these recipes and get excited about fall! That is, if you're not already excited. 

1. Apple Cider Maple Sausage Cornmeal Pancakes from Ambitious Kitchen
Apple Cider Maple Sausage Cornmeal Pancakes from Ambitious Kitchen
Photo from Ambitious Kitchen


Linguine with Tomatoes, Zucchini, and Herbs

This post is late. It should have been shared with you all in mid-summer - but I got carried away with peaches and berries and forgot to post it. But since some of you are still lucky enough to have access to tomatoes, I figured I'd share one last summery recipe with you. Just as a final farewell to tomato (and zucchini) season. This linguine with tomatoes, baby zucchini, and herbs from Food & Wine is truly the easiest, simplest, most impressive, most delicious pasta recipe you'll ever come across (yes, even better than this one). It's so much more than the sum of its parts - but please do use the best, freshest, ripest, most amazing "parts" or ingredients you can possibly get your hands on. I first came across this recipe a few years back and decided to give it a go one night when I was feeling uninspired - during the summer, I always have these ingredients on hand, so it seemed like a no-brainer. I figured it would be good, but I wasn't expecting a mind-blowing pasta. But The Mr. and I almost passed out with happiness when we took our first bite - this is an amazing pasta dish. The combination of sweet/salty/fresh/soft/crunchy is perfection. The garlicky, slightly spicy, salty tomatoes and zucchinis just work so well with the fresh herbs and salty cheese. I've tripled this for a large party - literally just dumping the whole thing onto a huge serving platter and letting everyone have at it. It's a huge hit every time I make it. It's by far our favorite pasta dish of the summer - one of The Mr.'s all-time favorite dinners ever. So if you're one of the lucky ones who still has access to ripe tomatoes and zucchini, please, please make this. And send some to me. Because knowing that I will have to wait an entire year to eat this again is just making me really, really sad. Time to go console myself with some butternut squash or apples or something. 



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Will blog for food.
The Founder of Feastie.