Tag Archives: cooking

20 Epic Alternatives To Boring Old Pizza — You’re Going To Love These

I’m as big of a fan of pizza as the next guy or girl, but sometimes, I can’t help but crave something a little different than a standard pie.

Hear me out before you call me a traitor to the pizza club…

While I’ll always eat a slice of pepperoni if it’s put in front of me, these fun alternatives to a regular pie will have you running to the kitchen to replicate these delicious recipes.

1. This hash brown pizza will have you drooling in seconds.

2. Or maybe you want sliced potatoes? This pie is for you.

3. Okay, but can we talk about pizza monkey bread?

4. While we’re on the topic of carbs…pizza PASTA.

5. This isn’t your average pizza…it’s made in a Crock-Pot!

6. I need these zucchini pizza boats in my mouth ASAP.

7. But these bite-sized poppers look tasty, too.

8. Basically make anything mini and I’m on board. I give you mini cauliflower pizzas.

9. Eggplant pizza never seemed like a good idea…then I saw these.

10. I love egg rolls and I love pizza…my prayers have been answered.

11. Pizza in a bowl? Yeah, I can get behind this concept.

12. I guess if you insist on being healthy, these quinoa pizza bites look good.

13. How beautiful are these personal portobello pizzas?

14. Or…make them mini (again)!

15. This pizza dip will have the whole family excited for snack time.

16. Or just go with an easy pizza casserole.

17. For all you pizza-for-breakfast fans: easy egg pizza.

18. These pizza waffles also look delicious!

19. Or maybe you’re craving dessert? Well this pizza cake isn’t sweet, but it’s chock-full of meat.

20. This pizza cake is equally delicious, but perhaps less harsh on your arteries?

If these tasty pizza alternatives didn’t make you a believer in the power of the pie — in different forms — then I don’t know what will!

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/pizza-alternatives/

Here Are 23 Uniquely Delicious Things You Never Thought To Do With Cake Mix

When it comes to desserts, cakes made from store-bought mixes are a little bit blah. But if you thought you could only make cake with the instant powdery mix, your mind is about to be blown. Check out these 23 unique and delicious ways to use cake mix…without actually baking a cake. You’ll be drooling by the end of this article.

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1. Cake batter and sprinkles bark sounds like a cavity but I don’t even care.

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2. Cheesecake is delicious and all, but it gets better with batter (obviously).

3. This colorful breakfast treat is made with funfetti cake mix.

4. With white chocolate chips and cake mix, this recipe is deliciously decadent.

5. You only need two ingredients to make this cake mix whipped cream.

6. Breakfast food can be a birthday cake, too with these funfetti waffles!

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7. I need this cake batter “cheese ball” in my life ASAP.

8. These no-bake cake truffles are to die for.

9. Cake batter French toast is definitely as good as it sounds.

10. Funfetti puppy chow has Chex, cake mix, powdered sugar, and white chocolate chips…excuse me while I drool.

11. This cake batter pull bread is a unique twist on just baking a cake.

12. This salty-sweet treat of cake batter-dipped pretzels is sure to please everyone.

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13. Cake batter-covered popcorn is the ultimate movie snack.

14. Bet you didn’t know you can make healthy(ish) oatmeal with cake mix.

15. You can make these milkshakes with whatever cake batter your heart desires.

16. This simple cake batter fudge recipe requires no baking.

17. These cake batter popsicles can be enjoyed year-round.

18. Yes, cake batter macarons exist…and yes, they’re delicious!

19. Donuts are good — ones made with funfetti and without frying are BETTER!

20. It’s impossible to eat just one of these cake batter crumb crispies.

21. Cake batter ice cream is actually super easy to make!

22. I’m salivating just looking at this cake batter smoothie.

23. Cake batter cinnamon rolls — aka So. Much. Deliciousness.

I love birthday cake-flavored ice cream, but I have a hard time finding it in stores. I’m going to try to whip up my own at home…or should I make cake batter fudge first? Which of these recipes had you running to your kitchen pantry in search of cake mix?

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/recipes-with-cake-mix/

18 Instagram Accounts That Will Inspire You To Live Your Best Life

Because 2015 is the year you’ll stick to your resolutions.

1. Nicole Warne – @garypeppergirl

 

Nicole runs the amazing Gary Pepper Girl blog and seems to have the coolest life ever. Though she originally hails from Australia, her Instagram will take you all over the world, inspiring your next adventure and showcasing the coolest travel spots from around the globe.

2. Jess Robinson – @lazygirlfit

 

Jess is a trainer who focuses on short and simple workouts that anyone can do with very basic equipment. Her Insta is filled with inspirational quotes, exercise demonstrations, and delicious-looking healthy food.

3. Jessica Stein – @tuulavintage

 

Named after the Finnish word for wind (‘tuula’), this Instagram is about wanderlust and wardrobe, and will inspire you to open your eyes to the beauty of the world we live in. Jessica is a style blogger who exudes effortless chic at all times.

4. Erica Domesek- @psimadethis

 

Literally everything on this Instagram is something that you can MAKE yourself. From bags to skirts and shoes to jewellery, P.S. I Made This is a perfect place for anyone who’s always dreamed of being crafty but has no idea how.

5. Loni Jane – @lonijane

 

Loni is possibly one of the healthiest people on Instagram, and is all about raw, vegan food without compromising taste. Her huge salad bowls will never fail to make your mouth water and her constant stream of photos will inspire you to embrace a wholesome diet.

6. National Geographic Travel – @natgeotravel

 

We all know about National Geographic, but did you know that they have a kick-ass travel Instagram account? Their photographers visit every corner of the globe, showing us some of the coolest places we wouldn’t ever know about otherwise.

7. Valerie – @biggalyoga

 

Valerie proves to us all that anyone can do yoga and look damn fine in the process. Her Instagram offers daily yoga challenges for beginners, and is all about having fun and loving yourself.

8. Hamish Blake – @hamishblakeshotz

 

If you like looking at photos of cute babies (and please, who doesn’t?), then Hamish is the guy to follow. This Aussie comedian will have you laughing with every pic he uploads, which isn’t only limited to his son’s adorable costumes.

9. Levo League – @levoleague

 

Levo League is a community of young professionals, and their Instagram account is all about inspiration and daily photos which will make you smile.

10. Jamie Milne and Greta Epstein – @cleaneatz

 

This Insta is just a huge amount of food porn which won’t leave you feeling guilty. It’ll have you craving a huge, fresh salad or a delicious sweet potato loaded up with veggies.

11. Jordan Ferney- @ohhappyday

 

This charming Instagram account is packed with amazing DIYs and cute home decorating ideas. It’ll have you itching to try out all of of the fun and colourful projects on offer.

12. David Frenkiel- @gkstories

 

Photos from this Instagram just make you want to move to a farm and eat delicious food for the rest of your life. Focusing on homely, nourishing meals, David and his family will take you on a food journey that you’ll never want to unfollow.

13. Beardoblack – @beardoblack

 

This man has the most glorious beard in the world, and can pull off a suit like no one else. His Insta is just a huge inspiration for pretty much every man ever.

14. Miann Scanlan – @miannscanlan

 

This Instagram is all about chilling out and finding your inner zen. A mix of peaceful beach shots and muted colours, Miann sends out peaceful vibes and happiness through her photos.

15. Chloe Morello- @chloemorello

 

This makeup vlogger from Sydney frequently updates her Instagram account with makeup tutorials, inspiration, and snaps of her daily life. Her detailed how-tos also include specific examples of makeup suggestions for different skin tones.

16. Teresa Cutter – @teresacutter_healthychef

 

This is the perfect selection of recipes and food inspo for anyone who has a sweet tooth but still wants to feel healthy. It is a delicious mix of beautiful food shots and inspired dishes using super fresh ingredients.

17. Manal – @naildecor

 

Nail polish grams are always awesome, but this particular artist uploads detailed video tutorials of all her colourful creations. They may look intricate and confronting, but most of the designs are actually a lot easier than they seem.

18. Apartment Therapy – @apartmenttherapy

 

Everyone goes through the phase of wanting to completely revamp your whole home, but sometimes it’s really not that easy to decide on what you want. Apartment Therapy provides heaps of awesome ideas for all different types of abodes.

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/jemimaskelley/yoga-and-nails-and-acai-oh-my

21 Awesome Kitchen Tips That’ll Inspire You To Cook WAY More Often

Cooking meals at home has some barriers to entry that aren’t easy to get past.

Stocking your pantry, having the right tools, and being confident enough to follow recipes are just a few of the issues staring wannabe home chefs in the face. Thankfully, there are some clever ways to overcome common kitchen woes (and you’re going to love how simple they are)!

1. When storing warm leftovers, leave a corner of the container open to vent.

The temperature of the food will lower more quickly, reducing the likelihood of bacteria forming in the warm, moist food.

2. A solution of white vinegar and water is awesome at cleaning up the kitchen.

3. Defrost items (that aren’t meat) by using a blow-dryer.

4. If you want to cut meat into thin slices, freeze it for 1-2 hours before you cut it.

5. You can remove the smell of garlic from your hands by rubbing them against stainless steel.

A spoon or sink should do the trick!

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6. Cook popcorn in the microwave with a bowl and a plate, no unhealthy chemicals needed!

Just microwave it for a couple of minutes (or until the popping stops). Flavor and salt as you please!

7. When cooking rice, add enough water so that the levels are a knuckle distance apart.

I.e., if the rice is at your first knuckle on your finger, the water level should be at the second knuckle.

8. You can use a George Foreman grill or panini press to make omelettes, hassle-free.

9. When reheating food, cover with a damp towel to prevent the microwave from drying the leftovers out.

10. Poke holes in potatoes and microwave them for about 4 minutes before baking or frying them.

It’ll reduce cooking time!

11. When you cut an onion, chill it for 30 minutes, cut vertically, peel, and leave the root intact. Voila, no tears!

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12. When using measuring cups for something sticky, coat them in oil first.

13. Froth milk in the microwave by adding it to a mason jar, shaking for 30 seconds, then microwaving for 30 seconds.

14. Coat fruit in flour before you add it to any batter.

15. Flatten meat before you freeze it to reduce defrosting time.

16. As you cook, toss your scraps and garbage in the same container to make the clean-up process easier.

17. Cutting vegetables and meat diagonally should make them cook faster.

18. You don’t need to cook pasta before baking it in the oven…see the dry pasta recipe here.

19. Make and blend batter in a blender to make your life easier.

20. CLEAN AS YOU GO…facing a monster pile of dishes at the end of the meal is worse than being tidy the entire time.

21. Cook pasta faster by using a bigger pot, adding salt to the water, and covering it with a lid.

There’s nothing to fear in the kitchen when you have these kinds of tricks up your sleeve!

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/super-easy-cooking-tips/

28 Things That Every Single Vitamix Owner Knows To Be True

Is it worth it? Hell yeah it is!

1. Unboxing your Vitamix was a day that will always be remembered.

2. But remembering where you put that instruction manual? Forget about it!

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3. When you first started using your Vitamix, you were hella cautious and chopped everything into cubes no larger than an inch.

4. But that got old. Real fast.

These days anything that fits into the container is fair game.

5. You know people judge you for owning such a high quality kitchen appliance.

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6. But so what? Fresh juice and smoothies makes you happy, and eating well will help you live longer.

Don’t let the haters stop you from doing your thang!

7. You’d convinced yourself it was worth investing in a Vitamix because of all the healthy things you’d be eating. Like kale smoothies, and fresh almond flour.

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8. But IRL your Vitamix is mainly used for chocolate hazelnut spread and frozen margaritas.

Cheers!

9. You’ve definitely been hypnotized by your Vitamix, especially when a perfect whirlpool happens.

10. You thought you’d save money, but your grocery bill actually skyrocketed after you got your Vitamix.

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All that organic produce doesn’t grow on trees.

Or, well some of it does, technically… But buying it at Whole Foods isn’t cheap!

11. And now, there’s a pretty much a lifetime supply of frozen fruits and vegetables in your freezer.

Probably because you went overboard and bought shit that you don’t even like.

12. Turning your Vitamix on, without the lid properly secured, is a mistake you only make once.

13. Coring apples is for suckers.

 

14. Hulling strawberries is a complete waste of time.

When you’ve got a Vitamix, strawberries don’t need to be hulled and apples don’t need to be cored.

15. It took you longer then you’d like to admit to discover that you could take apart the tamper to clean it.

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16. There are few things as delicious in life as fresh nut butters.

17. And even fewer things as difficult to scrape out from the bottom of your Vitamix.

Some times you just give up and come to terms with the fact that half of your nut butter went to waste.

18. Homemade almond milk is surprisingly easy to make.

All you need is water, almonds, and mesh strainer or cheesecloth.

19. Your Vitamix is your secret weapon when it comes to perfectly smooth soups and sauces.

20. But blending those hot-as-hell soups and sauces is definitely no joking matter.

21. Because every now and then this inevitably this happens.

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Burn scars in the shapes of soup splatters are common.

22. When the tamper isn’t getting everything to blend, sometimes you can gently rock your Vitamix back-and-forth.

23. But rock it too hard and the container will slip off of the base, causing an almost deafening sound.

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24. Cleanup is a breeze.

Soap and water inside, blend, then rinse.

25. Except when this happens.

 

27. Frozen bananas + milk = instant banana ice cream.

Add a bit of HERSHEY’S Chocolate Syrup and you’ve got a REAL party!

28. You love your Vitamix and can’t imagine your life without it. It’s practically one of your best friends.

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Let’s face it, none of your other friends have ever made you a smoothie nearly as good as the ones your Vitamix makes anyways.

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/mathewguiver/things-vitamix-owners-know-to-be-true

I Don’t Care What You Think About My Breakfast

I’ve spent years copying other people’s snacks and, recently, fending off unsolicited diet advice. Now I’m finally figuring out what I actually want to be eating.

Chris Ritter / BuzzFeed

I made oatmeal this morning, and I can’t stop thinking about it. OK, wait, hear me out. It wasn’t even the instant kind. It was old-fashioned. I cooked it in milk, and then added some things I thought would taste good together. And, miraculously, I was right: It was delicious. I realize I have just described the very basic process that is “cooking,” and I realize that oatmeal is not exactly the height of culinary achievement. But you have to understand: I really don’t know how to cook. This is new for me.

You know how people who cook a lot will be like, “Oh, I just threw this together from things I had in my fridge”? I don’t get that. Paralyzed by indifference and my general distaste for doing things I’m not already good at, I have never attempted to explore whatever creative kitchen potential I might have. I’m pretty sure I don’t have much. Only recently, and very cautiously, have I started experimenting with breakfast: my favorite meal, my one shining beacon of hope.

Up until now I have mostly eaten whatever the people nearest me eat. Ever since I first had the opportunity to procure food for myself, I’ve been a food copycat.

On the rare afternoons she didn’t have plans with her boyfriend or her cooler friends, my best friend in middle school invited me over after school to watch movies and make cookies. Her preferred brand was Nestlé Tollhouse — jumbo-sized, break-and-bake chocolate chip with little peanut butter cups mixed in. We deliberately undercooked them and often ate them straight off the pan. I asked my own mom, who has baked what must, by now, be hundreds of thousands of delicious homemade cookies for our family, to put the store-bought kind on her grocery list.

Standing in line in my college cafeteria I watched people assemble their food one step of ahead of me: what they put on sandwiches in which order, and especially what they put in a salad bowl. I didn’t want salad, at all, but I had this vague, growing sense that I should start eating it anyway. Once I watched someone put shredded carrots, cherry tomatoes, hard-boiled eggs and croutons on top of romaine lettuce and douse the whole thing in low-fat ranch dressing. In my head it became a sort of recipe. Salad = lettuce + carrots + cherry tomatoes + eggs + croutons + low-fat ranch. I didn’t put anything else on it because I was afraid I’d only make it taste worse.

These are the two kinds of meal mimicry: the kind you do just because the food looks (and/or tastes) good, and the kind you do because the food matches some idea you’ve formed about what you’re supposed to eat. For a long time I adopted and ate other people’s formulas with guiltless impunity: potato chips and sour cream, peanut butter plus Nutella, sweet cereal with any other kind of sweet cereal. But eventually I realized everybody else had stopped eating like ravenous teenagers, and then the way I copied other people’s eating was no longer by adding things, but by taking them away. This happened somewhat gradually, but I would guess I noticed it around the same time I first heard the words “chia seeds,” which was also around the time I moved to New York.

Never before in my life have I monitored more closely what I eat, or felt like what I eat is more monitored, than I do now, at 28 years old, living in New York. Most women I know have dealt with what we broadly describe as “food issues,” but I hardly gave my body’s width a second thought until I was in my mid-twenties. I was thin, so nobody ever told me to watch what I ate. I am also from the upper Midwest, where “superfoods” and juice cleanses are still fringe interests at best, and where cultural reservedness prevents most non-kin commentary on other people’s plates. Then I moved to New York, and everybody had input. So much input.

Something I’ve had pointed out to me a lot since moving here is that I really like sugar. I’d always thought of my sweet tooth fondly, as a not-that-bad weak spot I shared with my ancestors. (My mom has this story about a time she baked a pie for my dad’s father. When she went to cut it into eight pieces, as is standard, he stopped her: “Six,” he said. “Heaney serving size is one-sixth.”) I’ve since come to struggle with it. In my heart I don’t truly believe it’s wrong to eat sugar, but I’ve started feeling badly about myself when I do. I’ve started eating single pieces of bitter dark chocolate in lieu of other things I used to love much more. I’m told this is better for me.

Heaney Christmas cookie decorating circa 1992.

There was a time in my life when a piece of bread felt like an acceptable, even logical, companion to pasta, but no longer. In line for a catered lunch at work someone told me my plate was “all carbs,” and every time I’ve gotten lunch since I’ve felt like I’m being watched. I used to be good at dismissing comments like these as essentially impersonal projections, not really about me, but after so many “that’s a big piece/that’s a lot of X/how can you eat that”s, I got involved. Other people’s opinions have so infiltrated my own that there remain very few foods I can eat without considering their merits, and, by extension, what they might do to my increasingly suspect body. And that makes me so fucking mad.

This is probably part of the reason I’ve become obsessed with breakfast. Breakfast is the only meal I always eat completely alone. In the early morning, in my tiny apartment’s half-kitchen, before I’ve seen a single other human being, I feel free to decide for myself what is good for me and what I need. I’m a vegetarian, so I like to make sure my breakfast gives me a baseline of protein. I’ve tried various foundations (eggs, toasts, smoothies), but the thing I always come back to eventually is oatmeal.

A few weeks ago, in search of oatmeal inspiration, I found this list of things nutritionists eat for breakfast. All of them are simple, with recognizable ingredients. I was surprised to see that most of them even included some form of carb. I scrolled through until I found one in particular (shout-out to Anne Danahy, MS, RD, LDN) that seemed like a good foundation for something I could make my own: “steel-cut and old-fashioned oats cooked with 1% milk, mixed with fruit, walnuts, and a scoop of plain Greek yogurt.”

So I went to the grocery store and used it as a guideline, removing the things I don’t like (walnuts) and adding others I do. I have eaten it every day since. It’s so good. I keep thinking about it. I’m already excited to have it again tomorrow.

I don’t know if this is a “good” recipe, and I have *already* been informed that mixing granola with oatmeal is “insane.” This oatmeal is healthy, but, depending on whose unsolicited feedback you get, it could probably be a little bit healthier. That’s OK. To quote Jillian Michaels in her Ripped in 30 workout video, which I like to do as much as possible, “It doesn’t have to be perfect. Perfect sucks.”

Lauren Zaser / BuzzFeed Life

Katie’s Greek Yogurt Oatmeal

Serves 1

I use a kind of granola from Whole Foods called “simple granola with raisins,” mostly for crunch value. The protein powder (for protein) and maple syrup (for a little extra sweetness) are both optional.

INGREDIENTS
⅔ cup low-fat milk
½ cup old-fashioned oats
Salt
½ cup plain Greek yogurt
⅓ scoop (about 1 ½ tablespoons) vanilla protein powder (optional)
Maple syrup
Small handful of plain granola
Handful of unsalted roasted almonds
Handful of fresh blueberries
Ground cinnamon

PREPARATION
In a bowl, mix the protein powder into the Greek yogurt. Heat the milk with a pinch of salt in a saucepan over medium-low heat, just until it’s steaming hot, and then stir in the oats. Cook for five minutes, until the liquid is absorbed and the texture is creamy. Add a splash of water while cooking if the oats start to look dry. Pour the oats over the Greek yogurt, add maple syrup if desired, and mix. Top with granola, almonds, blueberries, and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Lauren Zaser / BuzzFeed Life

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/katieheaney/can-i-eat