Fresh Roasted Red Beet Hummus

Roasted red beet hummus is packed with essential nutrients including protein, fiber, folate, manganese, potassium, iron, and vitamin C but low in calories!

Roasted Red Beet Hummus

Roasted Red Beet Hummus

Course Snack
Servings 8
Calories 125 kcal


  • cup dried chickpeas
  • 4 cups water, divided
  • 8 oz uncooked red beets
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (2 tsp)
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Cover chickpeas with 2 cups of water and allow to soak for 6 - 12 hours. Drain and rinse.
  • Add 2 cups of water and chickpeas to a saucepan. Turn heat to medium. Cover and simmer for 90 minutes or until tender, checking occasionally to ensure there is enough water to keep chickpeas from scorching.
  • Drain any excess water and set chickpeas aside to cool.
  • While the chickpeas are cooking, preheat the oven to 400℉.
  • Cut greens off the beets, leaving 1” of the stem. Wash thoroughly, brush with olive oil and wrap in aluminum foil. Roast until tender, 50-60 minutes.
  • Remove the beets from the oven and allow to cool. Peel the beet and cut it into cubes.
  • Combine chickpeas, beets, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil in a food processor. Pulse until smooth, adding additional olive oil as needed to achieve desired consistency. This step can also be done in batches using a blender.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Hack: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 4 months.
  • Hack: Freeze in serving-sized portions for a great and easy snack. Thaw in the refrigerator for 24 hours before eating. If thawed hummus is grainy or lumpy after thawing, give it a quick spin in the blender or mini processor to smooth things out.
  • Hack: One 15 oz can of chickpeas can be substituted for the dried chickpeas. It is not necessary to soak or cook the canned chickpeas.
Keyword appetizer, buffet food, chickpeas, easy, football snacks, garbanzo beans, hors d'oeuvres, hummus, party food, red beets, snacks

Did you know?  Colorful foods add up to a healthy diet!  Check out the benefits of beets here!

Suggestion:  If you love beets, try this colorful orange and beet salad!

Air Fryer Ravioli

Air fryer ravioli is a delicious treat that’s sure to please. Switch things up by using different flavors of ravioli and a variety of dipping sauces!

Air Fryer Ravioli

Air Fryer Ravioli

5 from 1 vote
Course Appetizer, Snack
Servings 4
Calories 375 kcal


  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tbsp water
  • ¼ cup Italian-style bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 package refrigerated ravioli, any flavor (9 oz)
  • Oil cooking spray
  • 1 cup marinara


  • Whisk egg and water until well incorporated.  In a separate bowl, blend the bread crumbs and cheese.
  • Dip each ravioli in the egg mixture, followed by the bread crumb mixture.  Lay in a single layer on a plate and lightly coat both sides of each ravioli with cooking spray.
  • Lay ravioli in a single layer in the air fryer, making sure the edges don’t overlap.  
  • Air fry at 350℉ for 6 minutes.  Flip them over and continue to air fry for 3-4 minutes or until they are puffed up and light brown.
  • Serve with marinara sauce.
  • Hack:  Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.  If desired, freeze leftover ravioli (either before or after air frying) and marinara in serving-sized portions for up to 3 months.  Gently rewarm in the air fryer.
Keyword air fryer, appetizer, buffet, fried ravioli, party food, ravioli, snack

Did you know?  Ravioli has been around since the 1400s and is a vastly different dish depending on what country you’re in.  Click here for some fun facts about this delicious food!

Suggestion:  Serve the ravioli with this super easy homemade marinara sauce!

Homemade Vegetarian Split Pea Soup

Vegetarian split pea soup Is a delicious and comforting food that has it all: It’s healthy, low in fat and calories, vegan and is super easy to make!

Vegetarian split pea soup

Vegetarian Split Pea Soup

Course Soup
Servings 4
Calories 235 kcal


  • 1 cup chopped onion (1 small)
  • 1 cup chopped carrots (2 medium)
  • ½ cup chopped celery (1 stalk)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (2 tsp)
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp garam masala
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup dry yellow or green split peas
  • 5 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tbsp raisins


  • Stovetop:  Place all ingredients in a stockpot.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 60 minutes or until desired tenderness.
  • Slow cooker:  Place all ingredients in a slow cooker.  Cook on high for 8 hours or low for 12 hours.
  • Instant Pot:  Place all ingredients in the instant pot.  Lock lid and set the machine to cook at high heat for 12 minutes.
  • Hack:  Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Hack:  Freeze leftovers in serving-sized portions for up to 3 months.
  • HackDehydrated vegetables can be used in this recipe!
  • Hack:  Check the produce department for loose carrots, onions and/or celery stalks.  If you don’t see them, ask a clerk if they’re available.   
  • Hack:  Shop the salad bar if you just need a small amount of an item that you don’t think you’ll use again before it “goes over”.
Keyword appetizer, dried legumes, dried peas, easy, healthy, homemade soup, light meal, low calorie, meatless, pea soup, soup, soup course, split peas, vegan, vegetarian

Did you know?  Peas are a member of the legume family.  Legumes come in many options, are inexpensive and packed with nutrition!!

Suggestion:  Top this soup with easy homemade croutons!

Tomato and Shrimp Salad

Tomato and Shrimp Salad is a healthy treat that can be served as an appetizer or a light meal. It’s low in calories and packed with nutrition!

Tomato and Shrimp Salad
Tomato and Shrimp Salad

Tomato and Shrimp Salad


2 tbsp minced sweet onion

2 cloves garlic, minced (2 tsp)

1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

¼ cup lemon juice

¼ cup olive oil

¼ cup chopped basil (1 oz)

Salt to taste

1 tsp black pepper

½ pound cooked shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 pint grape tomatoes

5 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled


In a small bowl, combine onion, garlic, jalapeno, lemon juice, olive oil, basil, salt and pepper.  Set aside.

Place shrimp, tomatoes and bacon in a large salad bowl.  Drizzle dressing over the top and toss to combine.

If desired, serve over a bed of salad greens or baby spinach.


6 servings, 210 calories per serving

Hack:  Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.


Simple Pico de Gallo (Easy Fresh Salsa)

Simple Pico de Gallo (Easy Fresh Salsa) is easy to make and a great addition to any gathering buffet! Mix it with guacamole for an extra special treat.

Simple Pico de Gallo (Easy Fresh Salsa)
Simple Pico de Gallo (Easy Fresh Salsa)

Simple Pico de Gallo (Easy Fresh Salsa)


4 plum tomatoes (1 lb or 3 cups chopped)

½ large onion (1 cup chopped)

1 jalapeno pepper (optional)

1 clove garlic (1 tsp minced)

½ cup fresh cilantro (or 3 tbsp dried)

2 tbsp lime juice

½ tsp salt

⅛ tsp pepper


Chop tomatoes into small dice.  Mince onion, jalapeno, and garlic.  Add all to a mixing bowl.

Stir in cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper.

Refrigerate and allow to rest for one hour for flavors to combine.

Serve with tortilla chips, if desired.


6 servings, 25 calories per serving (pico de gallo only)


Hack:  Serve with or mix in Easy Guacamole Dip for a hearty and tasty appetizer or snack!

Serve over tacos, enchiladas or in burritos and quesadillas.  Also, cook with scrambled eggs or rice!

Homemade Chinese Dumplings

Another authentic recipe from Yuhong’s Country Kitchen! These homemade Chinese dumplings can be prepared simmered, pan-fried or in an air fryer.

Homemade Chinese Dumplings
(Courtesy Yuhong Sun)


½ head green cabbage

½ head napa cabbage

8 green onions

1 oz ginger (4” knob, ¼ cup)

1 lb ground pork

2 eggs

1 tbsp sesame oil

1 tbsp red wine

2 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp olive oil

100 dumpling wrappers


Dipping Sauce (per serving)*

2 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp Chinese vinegar

1 tsp crushed ginger

1 tsp chili sauce

1½ tsp sugar

1½ tsp sesame oil


Finely chop the cabbages and place in a large bowl. Sprinkle with salt and set aside. The salt will draw liquid out of the cabbage. Only a small amount of salt is needed.

Finely chop green onion and ginger. Set aside.

Place ground pork, eggs and ginger into a bowl and mix for 2 minutes.

Using your hands or cheesecloth, squeeze water out of cabbage and place into a clean bowl. Add green onions, pork mixture, sesame oil, red wine, soy sauce and olive oil. Mix together well.

Take one dumpling wrapper and place one tbsp filling in the center. Wet the edges of the wrapper with water and seal completely. The amount of filling and shape you fold it in is less important than ensuring that the edges are completely sealed so the filling doesn’t leak out. Continue until all the filling is gone.**  For more in-depth instruction on rolling and pleating dumplings, check out this video!

Put a large pot of water on the stove and heat to boiling. While the water is heating, assemble the dipping sauce.

When water comes to a full boil, add about 20 dumplings. Bring water back to a full boil and add enough cold water to bring the pot down to a gentle boil. Cover pot and cook dumplings until they float to the top of the water, about 3-4 minutes. Continue adding cold water as necessary throughout cooking to keep water at a gentle boil.

Remove dumplings from water with a slotted spoon and serve with dipping sauce.

If preferred, dumplings can be cooked in an air fryer for 6 minutes instead of boiling them. Coat with cooking spray and air fry for 6 minutes. Allow a longer time for frozen dumplings.

*Because of the thin consistency of the dipping sauce, it’s often made in small bowls for each individual person or to share between two or three people.

**Dumplings are often served at gatherings and are traditionally assembled jointly by the group or family that are going to eat them. Try experimenting with different shapes and have fun putting them together with your guests!


10 servings, 270 calories per serving

Hack: Cooked or uncooked dumplings can be frozen for up to 3 months. Lay in a single layer on a cookie sheet, making sure the edges are not touching, and place in the freezer. Once they are frozen, package in freezer bags or containers for storage. Add 2 extra minutes to cooking time. As with fresh, frozen boiled dumplings are ready when they float to the top of the water.

Hack: Ask the produce clerk to cut a head of cabbage into wedges so you’ll only have to buy what you need. They’ll wrap the leftover pieces and put it back on the shelf for sale.

Hack: Leftover cabbage can be used to make this Andouille sausage with cabbage recipe or Chinese Chicken Cabbage Soup!

Hack: Hack: Do you know that you can freeze fresh ginger root? Grating it in it’s frozen state is easier than grating it fresh and, if you choose organic ginger, you don’t have to peel it! Simply place in a sealed freezer bag or container and pop it in the freezer.

Hack: Chop leftover green onions and freeze in a sealable freezer bag or container for future use. While they won’t retain the crispness that would make them suitable for salads or garnish, they will be fine for cooking.

Hack:  For instructional videos for making traditional Chinese cuisine, visit Yuhong’s Country Kitchen on YouTube!



Easy Fresh Green Onion Pesto

Spread this delicious fresh green onion pesto on your toast, roll it up in chicken, smother your salmon or toss it in pasta. How do you like your pesto?

Fresh Green Onion Pesto

Fresh Green Onion Pesto

Course Appetizer, Snack
Servings 8 servings
Calories 175 kcal


  • 2 cups scallion or green onions, coarsely sliced
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 2 tbsp fresh chive
  • 5 cloves garlic (5 tsp minced)
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp salt


  • Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
  • Hack:  Pesto can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 7 days or frozen for 12 months.  I recommend freezing in ice cube trays and then removing portions to a freezer-safe container so you can thaw just the amount you need.
  • Hack:  Pine nuts can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2 months or in the freezer for 6 months.
  • Hack:  Chop leftover green onions and freeze them in a sealable freezer bag or container for future use.  While they won't retain the crispy texture of fresh green onions, they will be fine for use in cooking.
Keyword appetizer, easy, football snacks, green onion, healthy, hors d'oeuvres, low calorie, party food, pesto, pizza, quick prep, scallion, snack, vegetarian

Did you know?  Green onions are an excellent source of vitamin K!  Check out some more healthy benefits here!

Suggestion:   Use this pesto to make Chicken Pesto Naan Pizza!

Simple Roasted Garlic Spread

The versatility of this simple roasted garlic spread cannot be overstated – simply use it anywhere you desire a creamy, bracing kick of garlic flavor.

Roasted Garlic Spread

Roasted Garlic Spread

Course Condiment
Servings 2 tbsp
Calories 105 kcal


  • 1 head garlic
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 cup cream cheese, softened (1 block or 8 oz.)
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp dried chives
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp dried parsley 
  • ½ tsp fried oregano
  • pinch of salt (to taste)


  • Preheat the oven to 350℉.
  • Remove the outer skins of the garlic, leaving only the skin that covers the cloves.
  • Cut ¼“ off the top of the garlic bulb so that all the cloves are exposed. Set upright on aluminum foil. Drizzle oil over the bulb, making sure that the tops of all the cloves have been covered. Seal aluminum foil over the bulb.
  • Bake for 40-60 minutes, until the bulb is soft. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  • Remove the bulb from the foil, turn it upside down and gently squeeze garlic from the skins into a small bowl.
  • Mix in cream cheese, salt, pepper and spices.
  • Allow to rest for at least one hour while flavors blend. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Keyword appetizer, buffet, condiments, cream cheese, easy, football snacks, garlic spread, hors d'oeuvres, party food, roasted garlic, spread, vegetarian

Did you know?  Garlic has many health benefits!  Check out the facts here!

Suggestion: Try this tasty spread on a freshly made gourmet veggie bagel!

Hearty Healthy Black Bean Dip

This healthy black bean dip is a hearty, vegetarian dish that’s both flavorful and tasty. Serve it with chips or tortillas as an appetizer, snack or light meal!

Healthy Black Bean Dip

Healthy Black Bean Dip

Course Appetizer, Snack
Servings 6
Calories 245 kcal


  • cup dried black beans
  • 4 cups water, divided
  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 red onion, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (3 tsp)
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • ¾ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ cup boiling water
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ¾ cup cheddar cheese (3 oz)


  • Cover beans with 2 cups of water and allow to soak for 6 - 12 hours. Drain and rinse.
  • Put 2 cups of water and beans to a saucepan. Turn heat to medium. Cover and simmer for 45-60 minutes or until tender, checking occasionally to ensure there is enough water to keep beans from scorching. Drain excess water, if necessary.
  • (NOTE: The above step can be done ahead. Store beans tightly covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.)
  • Heat the oven to 475℉ degrees.
  • Heat olive oil in a saute pan over medium-low heat. Add onions and saute for 5 -10 minutes until translucent but not browned. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about one minute.
  • Stir in the tomato paste, paprika, red pepper flakes and cumin. Saute for 30 seconds.
  • Add the beans, boiling water and generous pinches of salt and pepper, and stir to combine.
  • Transfer to an oven-safe dish and sprinkle the cheese evenly over the top.
  • Bake until the cheese has melted, 5 to 10 minutes. If the top is not as browned as you’d like, run the dip under the broiler for 1 or 2 minutes.
  • Serve immediately with corn chips, crusty bread, pita or rice.
  • Hack: One cup of frozen onions can be substituted for fresh onion in this recipe.
  • Hack: One 15 oz can of black beans can be substituted for the dried beans.
  • Hack: Store leftover dip in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Hack: Freeze leftover portions sealed in serving-sized portions for up to 6 months. Allow to thaw completely in the refrigerator before reheating.
Keyword appetizer, black bean, cheesy dip, dip, easy, football snacks, healthy, hearty, legume, snack, vegetarian

Did you know? Black beans are a member of the legume family.  Legumes come in many options, are inexpensive and they’re packed with nutrition!!

Suggestion:  Serve this dip with some authentic Indian flatbread naan!


Italian Herb Focaccia Bread

Italian herb focaccia bread is an Italian classic with many uses. It can be served with easy homemade bruschetta as an appetizer, made into sandwiches or as a side to pasta!

Italian Herb Focaccia Bread

Italian Herb Focaccia Bread

Course Appetizer, Bread
Servings 12
Calories 185 kcal


  • 7 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced (2 tsp)
  • 1 tbsp dried Italian seasoning
  • cups water
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp dry active yeast
  • cups flour
  • tsp salt


  • In a small bowl, mix 2 tbsp olive oil, garlic and Italian seasoning. Set aside.
  • Drizzle 2 tbsp olive oil over the bottom of a 9” x 13” pan.
  • In a small microwave-safe bowl, mix water, sugar and 3 tbsp olive oil. Heat in microwave to a temperature of between 110℉ – 115℉. This should take less than a minute and it’s very important to use a thermometer to get the correct temperature. 
  • Dissolve yeast in the water mixture and set aside for 7 minutes to proof. It should “bloom” or form a foam on top.
  • In the meantime, add flour and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk together with a fork. When the yeast mixture is proofed, add to flour and mix on high speed for 30 seconds.
  • Scoop batter into prepared pan, cover and let rise for 60 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 375℉.
  • Use your fingers to dimple the surface of the bread. Use your fingers or a pastry brush to drizzle and spread the garlic/herb/olive oil mixture over the surface of the batter. Use more olive oil, if necessary, to ensure that the top is completely coated.
  • Bake in a preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown. Cool for 5 minutes then turn out bread onto a wire rack.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature.
  • Hack: Tightly covered leftovers will remain fresh at room temperature for 2 days or in the refrigerator for 1 week. Alternatively, they can be frozen for up to 3 months.
Keyword appetizer, bread, easy, flatbread, focaccia, hors d'oeuvres, pita bread, pizza, side dish, vegan, vegetarian, yeast

Did you know?  Focaccia is the “original” pizza crust!  Check out some fun facts here!

Suggestion:  I love focaccia bread with bean recipes like this slow cooker pork and beans!


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