Pork Verde Stew with Cornbread Dumplings

I received product samples from Sam’s Fresh Salsa to help in the creation of this post. All opinions are my own.

Yes, it’s summer, but the weather here hasn’t felt like it the last week or so. All the dreary, rainy days have me craving comfort food so I took one of my summer staples – salsa! – and turned it into the perfect rainy-day dinner.

Tender chunks of pork are stewed in a couldn’t-be-easier verde sauce and then buried in piles of fluffy cornbread dumplings. Finish with a dollop of sour cream and you have the perfect meal!

A bowl with chunks of pork smothered in a verde chile sauce with a cornbread dumpling to the side. The bowl is on an orange napkin and a blue pot is in the background.

I created this recipe for Sam’s Fresh Salsa Blogger Recipe Challenge and couldn’t be happier with the way it turned out!

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Summer Steak Salad

There are so many traditional cookout foods – and so many of them are light on vegetables. I love a good potato salad but I also love my greens so I’m always excited when they find their way into an outdoor party menu. Thus, it seemed appropriate to wrap up #BBQWeek with a hearty salad that’s still perfect for an outdoor gathering.

This salad is full of the bounty of summer and make-ahead friendly which is perfect for entertaining. Simply dressed greens, tomatoes, and grilled onions are topped with grilled steak, avocado, basil, and almonds in this drool-worthy dish. It will serve four as a meal in itself – or more as part of a larger spread.

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Grilled Nachos

I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone who didn’t like nachos. Even the pickiest kids are usually totally cool with chips covered in cheese. Thus, nachos may just be the perfect dish to bring to a party – and a cookout is no different because they also can be made on the grill.

I love making a big, loaded up tray for our family for dinner, but a nacho bar would be such a fun idea for a cookout! You could set up all the ingredients separately and use loaf pans for individual servings. Write names on the foil covering to keep track of everyone’s custom orders!

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Vegan BBQ Chickpea Salad

Today is Good Friday, the last Friday of Lent – which means it’s time to wrap up this year’s Lenten Friday series. I hope you’ve enjoyed the vegan meal ideas I’ve shared over the last six weeks! I’m closing out this year’s posts with a great recipe for the meal I struggle with most on Lenten Fridays – lunch.

For me, breakfast is always easy. Dinner is always well planned. Lunch, though? Lunch is always just grabbing whatever – and not usually plant based in this house so vegan lunches have been lackluster at best.

Salad with bbq chickpeas, corn, cucumber, pickles, red onion, carrots, and tahini ranch dressing.

This salad, though, was the best lunch I had during Lent this year hands-down. It doesn’t take long to make, but the elements are also perfectly meal-prep friendly if you want to make it ahead. The warm, bbq chickpeas paired with all my favorite barbecue-inspired flavors (including dill pickles!) was such a satisfying mid-day meal.

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Vegan Teriyaki Eggplant & Pineapple Skewers

It feels like summer here today so it felt appropriate to share the most summer-worthy recipe of this year’s Lenten series!

When most people think of grilling, they think meat – steaks, burgers, etc. – but fruit and veggies are also also fabulous grilled.

This beautiful grilled skewers are simple, packed with flavor – and plant based. Chunks of eggplant and pineapple and grilled and glazed with a quick homemade teriyaki sauce. This is the perfect vegan option for your next cookout!

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Vegan Cauliflower Gyros in the Air Fryer

My most productive time of the day is the morning. The more I can get done before lunch, the better – and that extends to dinner prep too. This meal was a hit here not only because it was delicious, but also because a vast majority of the prep could be done ahead of time.

Cooked, marinated cauliflower in a pita with cucumber, tomato, and black olives.

I set the cauliflower up to marinate early, and by the time dinner rolled around all I had to do was toss it in the air fryer and assemble the sandwiches. It was packed with flavor and super hearty – a perfect Lenten Friday dinner.

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Vegan Spring Minestrone

This winter has been crazy. Here in central NJ, we’ve seen more snow this year than we have in at least a decade. The kids no longer get excited when it’s snowing – it’s happened than often. And I know other parts of the country are dealing with an unexpectedly harsh season too, and not fairing as well as we have been.

I take heart knowing spring is around the corner.

Even with spring on the horizon, it’s still soup weather. Lots of my favorite soups are very wintery – so I decided I needed one that was more spring-appropriate. This vegan soup is packed with spring veggies – and flavor.

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Vegan Hummus and Herb Pizza

For me, pizza is synonymous with Lent so even though this year’s Lenten series is vegan, I had to include a pie that fit the bill.

Instead of cheese, this pie has a layer of creamy hummus. Instead of meat or extra cheese, it’s topped off with sliced grape tomatoes, herbs, and toasted pecans.

The result is a beautiful pie – perfect crispy crust, creamy layer, and lots of toppings!

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Individual Vegan Pot Pies

Since so much of the country is dealing with snow, it seemed appropriate to kick off this year’s Lent series with some cold-weather comfort food. These pot pies are warm and hearty – even meat lovers won’t miss the meat here!

With hearty veggies, a creamy sauce, and a flaky crust, this falls into you’d-never-guess-it’s-vegan territory. But it is, and it’s good.

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Korean BBQ Egg Rolls in the Air Fryer

I received free products in exchange for this post. All opinions are my own.

I’m always up for a challenge so I was excited to jump in when JSL Foods asked me to cook up something fun using their egg roll wrappers! We are big fans of traditional egg rolls – and Asian-inspired flavors in general – but I knew I wanted to switch it up and try something a little different with these!

I created these egg rolls with versatility in mind. They’d be a perfect appetizer for the big game or game night at home, but they’d also be a great option for lunch or lighter dinner paired with a salad.

Instead of the traditional chicken and cabbage flavored with soy sauce, these rolls are stuffed with chicken smothered with a Korean-style BBQ sauce, pineapple and red onion – and then cooked in the air fryer to keep them lighter.

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