Honey Mustard Pork Chops

Simple homemade sauces (or glazes) are your secret weapon in the kitchen. They’re the easiest way to turn a boring piece of meat into something really mouthwatering and amazing. Case in point: Honey Mustard Pork Chops. This particularly awesome sauce is a mix of honey, Dijon mustard, a little mayo for creaminess, and a few […]

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Simple homemade sauces (or glazes) are your secret weapon in the kitchen. They’re the easiest way to turn a boring piece of meat into something really mouthwatering and amazing. Case in point: Honey Mustard Pork Chops. This particularly awesome sauce is a mix of honey, Dijon mustard, a little mayo for creaminess, and a few spices. Smear that awesome sauce on a some pan seared pork chops, pop them in the oven to heat through, and then finish them off with a few minutes under the broiler. The end result is creamy, caramelized, honey mustard madness. Madness in a good way, of course.

Originally posted 1-10-2015, updated 10-23-2020.

Overhead view of honey mustard pork chops in a round casserole dish

Baking Time May Vary

Pork chops are delicate flowers. If you over bake them, they get tough and dry, so you really have to pay them some attention. This is where cooking intuition comes in handy. I’ve provided a general estimated bake time in the recipe below, but the total time needed to get the internal temperature of the pork chops up to 145ºF will vary depending on several factors. The thickness of your pork chops will greatly determine how long they need to bake, as will the amount of time they spent in the skillet while searing. The longer they’re in the skillet, the less time they’ll need in the oven. So keep these things in mind as you cook your chops and I wish you all the most juicy and tender pork chop success!

Can I Use Boneless Pork Chops?

Yes, you can achieve something similar with boneless pork chops and a slightly altered technique. The recipe below is written for bone-in pork chops, which take longer to cook than boneless chops. If using boneless chops you can shorten the bake time considerably. Keep your meat thermometer handy so you can test their temperature and prevent overcooking. If you’re using thin boneless pork chops, you may not even need to bake them after searing. Simply slather the seared chops with the sauce right in the skillet and let the sauce reduce a little bit to more of a glaze consistency. Either way, make sure they reach an internal temperature of 145ºF. 

What to Serve with Honey Mustard Pork Chops

I served my Honey Mustard Pork Chops with some Roasted Brussels Sprouts and roasted sweet potatoes. Because they cooked at different temperatures from the pork chops, I cooked the vegetables first, then lowered the oven’s temperature before adding the pork chops. Make sure the oven is all the way down to the correct temperature before baking the pork chops, so you don’t accidentally over cook them! :)

Honey mustard pork chop on a plate with brussels sprouts and sweet potato

baked honey mustard pork chops in a casserole dish from the side

Honey Mustard Pork Chops

Honey Mustard Pork Chops are anything but boring with a sweet, tangy, and savory homemade honey mustard glaze.
Total Cost $6.11 recipe / $1.53 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 475.63kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise $0.53
  • 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard $0.18
  • 2 Tbsp honey $0.24
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika $0.03
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp Freshly cracked pepper $0.02
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.02
  • 4 bone-in pork chops, one-inch thick (about 2.5 lbs.) $5.02

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Prepare the honey mustard sauce by stirring together the mayonnaise, Dijon, honey, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and freshly cracked black pepper.
  • Use a paper towel to dry off the surface of the pork chops, then season each side with a pinch of salt and freshly cracked pepper. Heat one tablespoon of cooking oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. When the skillet is very hot add two pork chops at a time and cook until golden brown on each side (3 minutes each side). Place the browned pork chops in a casserole dish (it's okay if they overlap slihtly).
  • Smear the honey mustard sauce over both sides of the pork chops in the casserole dish. Bake for about 30 minutes for 1-inch thick chops, about 20 minutes for ¾-inch thick chops, or until the internal temperature reaches 165ºF. To achieve more browning, switch the oven to broil and broil the chops for 3-5 minutes or until the surface is golden brown and bubbly. Serve hot.

Nutrition

Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 475.63kcal | Carbohydrates: 8.9g | Protein: 49.85g | Fat: 25.65g | Sodium: 613.25mg | Fiber: 0.08g

baked honey mustard pork chops in a casserole dish from the side

How to Make Baked Honey Mustard Pork Chops – Step by Step Photos

honey mustard ingredients in a bowl

Start by mixing up the honey mustard sauce. Stir together 1/3 cup mayonnaise, 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard, 2 Tbsp honey, 1/8 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp smoked paprika, 1/4 tsp salt, and some freshly cracked pepper (about 15 cranks of a pepper mill).

Mixed honey mustard sauce

Then you have a really delicious honey mustard sauce that you will have to restrain yourself from licking off the spoon. Set it aside and try to forget about it for a minute.

Bone-in Pork chops on a cutting board

You’ll want four thick-cut bone-in pork chops for this recipe. Try to get pork chops that are 3/4 to 1-inch thick. The pork chops I used today are about ¾-inch thick. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Use a paper towel to dry off the surface of the chops (this helps them sear better), then season each side with a pinch of salt and some freshly cracked pepper.

Seared pork chops in a skillet

Heat one Tbsp cooking oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Make sure the skillet and oil are very hot, then add two chops at a time and cook until golden brown on each side (about 3 minutes per side). If it’s taking longer than about 3 minutes to get a nice brown color, make sure you reduce the baking time to compensate because the pork chops will already be more cooked when they go into the oven.

Pork chops coated with honey mustard glaze

After browning the chops, place them into a casserole dish (it’s okay if they overlap just a little). Smear the honey mustard sauce over both sides of the pork chops. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-30 minutes, or until they reach an internal temperature of 145ºF (about 20 min for ¾-inch thick, or closer to 30 for 1-inch thick chops).

baked honey mustard pork chops in a casserole dish

Finish them off with just a few minutes under the broiler for maximum browning action (I did not move the oven rack, I simply switched the setting from bake to broil and kept an eye on them). 

Finished honey mustard pork chops garnished with parsley

So yummy! I garnished with a little parsley for color, but it’s not needed to flavor the honey mustard pork chops. 

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Cobb Salad

Cobb Salad with chicken, bacon, tomatoes, hard boiled eggs, Avocado, blue cheese, chives, and a simple red wine vinegar dressing. This traditional salad is loaded with goodness and always a favorite! I love making salads because they are pretty, fresh,…

Cobb Salad with chicken, bacon, tomatoes, hard boiled eggs, Avocado, blue cheese, chives, and a simple red wine vinegar dressing. This traditional salad is loaded with goodness and always a favorite! I love making salads because they are pretty, fresh, and delicious. We have been eating salads all summer long and can’t get enough. Josh…

The post Cobb Salad appeared first on Two Peas & Their Pod.

Summer Sweet Corn Salad

Fresh sweet corn is one of my favorite things about summer. It’s so sweet and juicy when it’s fresh, and the smell of the husks as you peel them back from the cob brings back so many memories of summers past. So when I saw fresh sweet corn on sale at the grocery store this […]

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Fresh sweet corn is one of my favorite things about summer. It’s so sweet and juicy when it’s fresh, and the smell of the husks as you peel them back from the cob brings back so many memories of summers past. So when I saw fresh sweet corn on sale at the grocery store this week I grabbed a couple and whipped up this super simple Summer Sweet Corn Salad. It has a medley of colorful vegetables, a little pasta to bulk it out, and a super fresh lemon vinaigrette keeps everything light and flavorful. This is a very flexible recipe and I’ve got a couple modification ideas for you below!

Overhead view of a serving bowl full of Summer Sweet Corn Salad

Make it Pasta-Free

I added pasta to my salad for bulk, but you can totally make this salad without pasta, too! Just double up your vegetables, drizzle that lemon vinaigrette over top, and you’re good to go! You can eat the vegetable salad as-is, or scoop it over a bed of greens.

Add a Protein and Make it a Meal

If you want to eat this salad as a main dish instead of serving it as a side, try adding some grilled chicken, rotisserie chicken, boiled shrimp, or cooked salmon on top. It’s such a light and fresh dish that it pairs really well with “lighter” meat and seafood.

Can You Eat Raw Corn??

Yes, yes, and YES! Raw sweet corn is soooo sweet, crisp, and juicy. It’s an absolute delight! It adds nice little pops of sweetness throughout this salad that contrast so well with the creamy avocado and tangy vinaigrette. 

If you don’t have fresh corn for this salad, I would suggest frozen corn as the next best substitute, BUT just know that it’s 100x better with fresh sweet corn.

Doesn’t the Avocado Turn Black?

Nope! I kept this salad in my fridge for four days and it was still great. On day two there was no noticeable difference in the appearance of the avocado chunks. By day four, they were slightly grey on the edges, but overall still looked great. The lemon vinaigrette goes a long way toward preventing the oxidization that usually causes the color change. 

What to Serve with Sweet Corn Salad

This salad makes a great side dish to Quick BBQ Chicken, Cilantro Lime Chicken, Garlic Butter Baked Cod, Baked Spicy Chicken Sandwiches, or Marinated Portobello Burgers.

Close up of a bowl of Summer Sweet Corn Salad with a wooden spoon in the middle

 
Close up of a bowl of Summer Sweet Corn Salad with a wooden spoon in the middle

Summer Sweet Corn Salad

Colorful summer vegetables, creamy avocado, pasta shells, and a homemade lemon vinaigrette make this light and fresh Summer Sweet Corn Salad.
Total Cost $7.67 recipe / $0.96 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 8 1 cup each
Calories 255.84kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Lemon Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup olive oil $0.64
  • 1 fresh lemon $0.89
  • 1/4 tsp dried basil $0.03
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard $0.04
  • 1/8 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp pepper $0.02
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley $0.20

Salad*

  • 8 oz. pasta shells $0.63
  • 2 cobs sweet corn $0.80
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes $2.50
  • 2/3 lb. zucchini $0.89
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion $0.11
  • 1 avocado $0.89

Instructions

  • Zest and juice the lemon. You'll need 2 Tbsp juice and ½ tsp zest. Combine the lemon juice, lemon zest, olive oil, basil, Dijon, salt, pepper, and chopped parsley in a bowl or jar. Whisk the ingredients in a bowl, or close the jar and shake until combined. Set the vinaigrette aside.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Add a couple large pinches of salt to the pasta water, then add the pasta. Continue to boil until the pasta is tender (about 7 minutes), then drain in a colander. Rinse the pasta briefly with cool water, then allow it to drain well.
  • While the pasta is cooking and draining, prepare the rest of the vegetables. Slice the corn kernels off the cobs, slice the grape tomatoes in half, dice the zucchini, finely dice the onion, and dice the avocado.
  • Once the pasta has drained well and cooled, add it to a large bowl with the prepared vegetables. Pour the dressing over top, then toss until everything is evenly combined and coated in dressing. Season with a pinch of salt to taste, then serve.

Notes

*The vegetable amounts are very flexible. If you have a little more or a little less of each, it's okay.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 255.84kcal | Carbohydrates: 35.68g | Protein: 5.95g | Fat: 11.54g | Sodium: 68.91mg | Fiber: 4.28g

How to Make Summer Sweet Corn Salad – Step by Step Photos

A zested and juiced lemon on a cutting board

Zest and juice a lemon. You’ll need 2 Tbsp juice and ½ tsp zest.

Lemon Dressing in a jar

To make the lemon vinaigrette, combine ¼ cup olive oil, 2 Tbsp lemon juice, ½ tsp lemon zest, 1/4 tsp dried basil, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, ⅛ tsp salt, ⅛ tsp pepper, and about ¼ cup chopped parsley. If you do this in a bowl you can whisk the ingredients together, or combine them in a jar and shake until they’re combined.

draining shell pasta in a metal colander

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Once boiling, add a couple pinches of salt and 8 oz. pasta shells. Continue to boil the pasta for about 7 minutes, or until tender. Drain the pasta in a colander, and give it a brief rinse with cool water. Let the pasta drain well.

Cutting corn off the cob

While the pasta is cooking and draining, prepare the rest of the vegetables. Cut the kernels off two cobs of sweet corn. I like to do this with the end of the cob in a bowl so they kernels fall right off into the bowl instead of flying all over the kitchen. Haha!

Chopped vegetables on the cutting board

Also dice about ⅔ lb. zucchini, slice 1 pint grape tomatoes in half, finely dice about ¼ cup red onion, and dice one avocado.

Dressing being poured over the salad ingredients in the bowl

Add the drained and cooled pasta to a large bowl with the corn, zucchini, tomatoes, red onion, and avocado. Pour the dressing over top, then toss until everything is combined and coated in dressing.

Seasoning the salad with a pinch of salt

Finally, add just a small pinch of salt on top, if desired. I like to have a little bit of crystalized salt on the surface of the pasta and vegetables for a little pop of flavor. 

Overhead view of a serving bowl of summer sweet corn salad with a wooden spoon on the side

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Comeback Sauce

Earlier this week I made some amazing steak fries and I needed a dipping sauce for them that was equally as epic. Plain old ketchup was just not going to do, so I made some Comeback Sauce. Comeback Sauce is a creamy, tangy, sweet, and savory sauce that’s great for dipping, dunking, drizzling, and smearing […]

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Earlier this week I made some amazing steak fries and I needed a dipping sauce for them that was equally as epic. Plain old ketchup was just not going to do, so I made some Comeback Sauce. Comeback Sauce is a creamy, tangy, sweet, and savory sauce that’s great for dipping, dunking, drizzling, and smearing onto just about any food. It’s not called “comeback sauce” for nothing. It will keep you coming back for more. And more. And MORE. (I “accidentally” ate an entire bunch of broccoli in one sitting, thanks to this delicious sauce.)

Comeback Sauce – Creamy, Tangy, Sweet, and Savory

A piece of roasted broccoli being dipped into a bowl of comeback sauce

What is Comeback Sauce?

This unique sauce is said to have originated in a Greek restaurant in Mississippi, but it quickly spread throughout the entire south. The original sauce had a base of mayonnaise and Heinz Chili Sauce (a tomato based sauce not to be confused with Sweet Chili Sauce), plus some other seasonings. There are many interpretations of this addictive sauce, with each person putting their own spin on the original as it spread across the region. Because Heinz Chili Sauce is not something I keep in my pantry, I made a few substitutions to create a similar flavor profile using items that I keep on hand, and in the process put the Budget Bytes stamp on the classic comeback sauce. ;)

What Do You Serve it With?

What can you not serve it with is probably a more appropriate question! It’s a fantastic all-purpose dip for things like roasted vegetables (shown with roasted broccoli), fried foods like french fries, chicken fingers or nuggets, or chips. It’s also great smeared onto burgers, fried chicken sandwiches, or wrap sandwiches. I wouldn’t be opposed to using this as a salad dressing, or using it to make an extra flavorful batch of coleslaw!

Close up of broccoli being dipped into comeback sauce

 
Close up of broccoli being dipped into comeback sauce

Comeback Sauce

This creamy, tangy, sweet, and savory Comeback Sauce is great for dipping, drizzling, smearing, and smothering all of your favorite foods. 
Total Cost $1.03 recipe. /$0.21 serving
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 5 2 Tbsp each
Calories 158.8kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise $0.80
  • 2 Tbsp ketchup $0.10
  • 1/2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce $0.01
  • 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp hot sauce* $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp salt $0.02

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir until evenly mixed. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat.

Notes

*Any vinegar based hot sauce like Tabasco.

Nutrition

Serving: 2Tbsp | Calories: 158.8kcal | Carbohydrates: 2.44g | Protein: 0.34g | Fat: 16.52g | Sodium: 319.92mg | Fiber: 0.06g

Check out these other homemade sauces:

A bowl of comeback sauce surrounded by roasted broccoli

How to Make Comeback Sauce – Step by Step Photos

sauce ingredients in a bowl, not mixed

Combine ½ cup mayonnaise, 2 Tbsp ketchup, 1/2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce, ½ tsp Dijon mustard, 1/8 tsp hot sauce, ¼ tsp smoked paprika, ⅛ tsp garlic powder, ⅛ tsp freshly cracked black pepper, and ⅛ tsp salt.

Finished comeback sauce being stirred with a red spatula

Stir the ingredients together until smooth. Serve or refrigerate until ready to eat!

Overhead view of a bowl of comeback sauce surrounded by roasted broccoli

Shown with roasted broccoli – toss broccoli in oil, then roast at 400ºF for about 30 minutes, or until you reach your desired level of brown.

The post Comeback Sauce appeared first on Budget Bytes.

French Grated Carrot Salad

If I had to compile a list of the top five National Dishes of France, right up there would be salade de carottes râpées, or grated carrot salad. It’s everywhere. You’ll find it on many café and bistro menus, Charcuteries sell it by the kilo, and even supermarkets sell it packed up in rectangular containers, ready to go, which office workers and others enjoy for…

If I had to compile a list of the top five National Dishes of France, right up there would be salade de carottes râpées, or grated carrot salad. It’s everywhere. You’ll find it on many café and bistro menus, Charcuteries sell it by the kilo, and even supermarkets sell it packed up in rectangular containers, ready to go, which office workers and others enjoy for a quick lunch.

romano

Romain, my French partner, makes a great version of this salad. It’s not difficult to make. All you need is a bunch of fresh carrots, ingredients for the dressing, and a little bit of effort, to grate the carrots.

Continue Reading French Grated Carrot Salad...

Simple Creamy Coleslaw

I never knew I was a coleslaw person until I made it myself. I had eaten it plenty of times at restaurants, never once having been impressed, and always wondering what the appeal was. But then I decided to make a quick batch of creamy coleslaw to go on a sandwich one day and that […]

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I never knew I was a coleslaw person until I made it myself. I had eaten it plenty of times at restaurants, never once having been impressed, and always wondering what the appeal was. But then I decided to make a quick batch of creamy coleslaw to go on a sandwich one day and that coleslaw totally stole the show. Something about that creamy-crunchy combo made me keep coming back for more, and I’ve been making on the reg ever since.

The super simple dressing for my Creamy Coleslaw is made with a few pantry staples, including a little Dijon mustard for tang and a dab of honey for sweetness. Then the dressing is just tossed with shredded cabbage, carrots, and sliced green onions, and you’re done! Creamy crunchy heaven ready to be piled onto a sandwich or taco, stuffed into a wrap, or enjoyed as is.

Easy Homemade Creamy Coleslaw

Overhead view of a bowl of coleslaw on a blue napkin

There’s something about that combo of sweet-tangy-creamy dressing over super crunchy cabbage that is everything. Like, once I take one bite I just can’t stop. So I made this recipe a “small batch”. Just about two cups total once done, or just enough for about four sandwiches. (Or two sandwiches and four mouthfuls, LOL)

Shredded Cabbage Shortcut

I used pre-shredded bagged “coleslaw mix” (shredded cabbage and carrots) for this recipe because I think it’s one of the few times using pre-chopped vegetables is cost effective. And then you’re not left with half a cabbage in your fridge wondering what to do with it. Because no matter how small a cabbage is, it always seems to be too much.

BUT, if you happen to have that half head of cabbage and want to make this with it, you’ll need about 3 cups finely shredded cabbage and about one medium carrot, shredded.

How to Keep Coleslaw from Getting Watery

Part of what makes cabbage so crunchy is that it contains a lot of water. The salt in the dressing pulls the water out of the cabbage through osmosis, leaving water in the bottom of your bowl, and your cabbage a little less crisp. The only way to prevent this from happening is to store your dressing separate from the shredded vegetables. So, if you don’t plan to eat the whole batch right away, make sure you only add dressing to the portion you plan to eat.

What to Serve with Creamy Coleslaw

Creamy coleslaw is absolutely perfect with anything BBQ, or anything with buffalo sauce. That creamy goodness perfectly balances the sweet tang of BBQ sauce and the fiery heat of buffalo sauce. But it also goes great on tacos, or as an extra topping in bowl meals. Here are a few recipes where I use coleslaw: BBQ Bean Sliders, Blacked Shrimp Tacos, and Buffalo Tempeh Sandwiches. It would also be great with something like: BBQ Chicken Burrito Bowls or Loaded Mashed Potato Bowls.

Side view of a bowl of creamy coleslaw with a fork lifting a bite

 

Simple Creamy Coleslaw

This homemeade Creamy Coleslaw with a sweet, tangy and creamy dressing is perfect for piling onto sandwiches, stuffing into wraps, or enjoying as is!

Dressing

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise ($0.55)
  • 1/2 Tbsp honey ($0.06)
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard ($0.03)
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar) ($0.02)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • freshly cracked black pepper ($0.03)

Vegetables

  • 1/2 14 oz. bag coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots)* ($0.75)
  • 3 green onions ($0.17)
  1. In a small bowl, combine the ingredients for the dressing (mayonnaise, honey, Dijon, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper).

  2. Slice the green onions. Add the coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots) to a large bowl with the green onions, then pour the dressing over top. Stir until the cabbage is evenly coated in dressing. Serve immediately.

How to Make Creamy Coleslaw – Step by Step Photos

Ingredients for creamy coleslaw dressing in a bowl

First, make the dressing. In a small bowl, stir together 1/3 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 Tbsp honey, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 tsp red wine vinegar, 1/4 tsp salt, and some freshly cracked pepper (about 5 cranks of a pepper mill).

coleslaw mix and green onion in a bowl

Add 1/2 of a 14 oz. bag of coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots) to a large bowl. Slice three green onions and add them to the bowl as well.

Add coleslaw dressing to cabbage in the bowl

Pour the prepared dressing over top…

Finished Creamy Coleslaw

And then stir until all the cabbage is coated in dressing.

front view of a bowl of creamy coleslaw on a blue napkin

Then dig in (or put it on your sandwich, taco, stuff it into your wrap, or serve it on the side with your ribs)!

The post Simple Creamy Coleslaw appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Balsamic Roasted Vegetables

You can never have enough all-purpose side dish recipes, like Balsamic Roasted Vegetables. These sweet and savory caramelized vegetables are versatile (use any vegetables), they hold up well to reheating (perfect for meal prep), and their flavor matches with a wide variety of main dishes. They even make a simple yet stunning Thanksgiving side dish! […]

The post Balsamic Roasted Vegetables appeared first on Budget Bytes.

You can never have enough all-purpose side dish recipes, like Balsamic Roasted Vegetables. These sweet and savory caramelized vegetables are versatile (use any vegetables), they hold up well to reheating (perfect for meal prep), and their flavor matches with a wide variety of main dishes. They even make a simple yet stunning Thanksgiving side dish!

Balsamic Roasted Vegetables – An All-Purpose Side Dish

A white oval platter full of Balsamic Roasted Vegetables with metal serving ware on the side.

What Vegetables Can I Use?

You can roast just about any vegetable in this sweet, savory, and tangy balsamic marinade. The key is to match your vegetables to the season. Summer vegetables tend to be softer, so they’ll take less time to roast. Fall and winter vegetables are harder and will take more time to roast. Choose vegetables of a similar type so they cook at a similar rate. Here are some vegetable options:

Soft Spring and Summer Vegetables: Asparagus, grape tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, bell peppers, eggplant, mushrooms, onions.

Hard Fall and Winter Vegetables: Carrots, parsnips, radishes, turnips, Brussels sprouts, onion, turnips, butternut squash, sweet potatoes.

What Should I Serve with Balsamic Roasted Vegetables?

My favorite pairing for balsamic roasted vegetables is any type of roasted meat (roast chicken, beef, or pork), but they also go beautifully with the smoky flavor of grilled meats. The savory-sweet flavor of the balsamic marinade also pairs quite well with BBQ sauce, so any type of BBQ meat would be a great match. I’ve also paired balsamic roasted vegetables with seasoned rice in the past for a simple vegetarian dish. Lastly, when using fall and winter vegetables, as I have today, this dish makes a simple and beautiful side for your Thanksgiving dinner.

Tips for Roasting Vegetables

Here are a few tips for getting great results when roasting any type of vegetable:

  • Chop harder vegetables into smaller pieces and softer vegetables into larger pieces to help them roast at a more similar rate.
  • Use plenty of oil. Without enough oil the vegetables will shrivel and dry instead of caramelize.
  • Don’t overcrowd the baking sheet. If the vegetables are too crowded, steam will become trapped and the vegetables will stew in their own juices instead of caramelize.
  • Don’t forget to stir! Stirring the vegetables at least once, half-way through the roasting time will ensure even cooking.

Close up of Balsamic Roasted Vegetables on a white platter

 

Balsamic Roasted Vegetables

These sweet and savory caramelized Balsamic Roasted Vegetables are an easy and elegant all-purpose side dish that you'll want to make over and over!

Balsamic Marinade

  • 3 Tbsp olive oil ($0.48)
  • 3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar ($0.41)
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar ($0.08)
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce ($0.24)
  • 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard ($0.09)
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil ($0.05)
  • freshly cracked black pepper ($0.03)

Vegetables

  • 8 oz. mushrooms (baby bellas or button mushrooms) ($1.69)
  • 1 red onion ($0.44)
  • 1/2 lb. carrots ($0.45)
  • 1/2 lb. parsnips ($1.06)
  • 1 bunch radishes ($0.99)
  • 1/4 bunch parsley (for garnish) ($0.20)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, soy sauce, Dijon mustard, dried basil, and pepper. Set the marinade aside.

  2. Scrub or peel the carrots and parsnips, then slice them into 1-inch pieces. Wash the mushrooms and cut them in half. Peel the onion and slice it into 1-inch wide wedges. Wash the radishes, cut off their stems and roots, then slice each one in half.

  3. Spread the prepared vegetables out over a large baking sheet, making sure they're in a single layer and no piled on top one another. Pour the balsamic marinade over top, then toss the vegetables until they're all well coated.

  4. Transfer the baking sheet to the oven and roast for 20 minutes. Carefully remove the baking sheet from the oven, give the vegetables a good stir, then return them to the oven and roast for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and have browned on the edges. Don't be alarmed if the marinade blackens on the baking sheet, that part will not be scooped up with the vegetables.

  5. While the vegetables are roasting, finely chop a handful of fresh parsley. Transfer the roasted vegetables to a bowl or serving platter and sprinkle the chopped parsley over top just before serving.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

A serving spoon stuck in the side of a platter full of balsamic roasted vegetables, garnished with chopped parsley.

How to Make Balsamic Roasted Vegetables – Step by Step Photos

Balsamic Marinade in a small bowl

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. In a small bowl, combine 3 Tbsp olive oil, 3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, 2 Tbsp brown sugar, 2 Tbsp soy sauce, 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard, 1/2 tsp dried basil, and some freshly cracked pepper (maybe 10 cranks of a pepper mill). Set the marinade aside.

Whole vegetables for roasting on a cutting board

As mentioned above, you can use just about any vegetable for this recipe, but it’s best to match your vegetables to the season (see section above recipe for alternative vegetable ideas). Today I am using one red onion, 8 oz. baby bella mushrooms, 2 parsnips (1/2 lb.), 1/2 lb. carrots, and one bunch of radishes. 

Balsamic marinade being poured onto prepared vegetables on the baking sheet

Clean and chop the vegetables so they are roughly similar sizes, making the harder vegetables slightly smaller and softer vegetables slightly bigger. Place the chopped vegetables on a large baking sheet, so they’re spread out in a single layer. Pour the balsamic marinade over top, then toss until the vegetables are all well coated.

balsamic roasted vegetables after 20 minutes

Transfer the vegetables to the preheated 400ºF oven and roast for 20 minutes. After 2o minutes, remove the baking sheet and ive the vegetables a good stir (pictured above). 

Balsamic roasted vegetables after 40 minutes

Return the vegetables to the oven and roast for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and browned on the outside. Don’t be alarmed if some of the marinade burns on the baking sheet. The vegetables themselves are not burned and the part stuck to the baking sheet will be left behind (a quick soak and it will all dissolve off, too). 

Balsamic roasted vegetables plated on a platter with chopped parsley on top

After roasting, transfer the balsamic roasted vegetables to a bowl or serving platter and top with chopped parsley. 

Balsamic roasted vegetables on a plate with roasted pork

Stay tuned tomorrow to see what I served with my Balsamic Roasted Vegetables!

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Easy Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette

If you haven’t noticed, I make this Easy Homemade Vinaigrette with a lot of my salad recipes. It’s pretty much my go-to when I’m not making a lemon tahini dressing. But anyway, it’s so simple, so versatile, and has so many options for tweaking, that I thought I’d give the recipe its own post. Commit […]

The post Easy Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette appeared first on Budget Bytes.

If you haven’t noticed, I make this Easy Homemade Vinaigrette with a lot of my salad recipes. It’s pretty much my go-to when I’m not making a lemon tahini dressing. But anyway, it’s so simple, so versatile, and has so many options for tweaking, that I thought I’d give the recipe its own post. Commit this recipe to memory, because it will serve you well.

A small white bowl of homemade balsamic vinaigrette with a spoon in it and spinach, garlic, and dried basil on the side

Is Balsamic Vinegar the Same as Balsamic Vinaigrette?

First things first, balsamic vinegar is not the same as balsamic vinaigrette, a point which confuses a lot of new cooks. Balsamic vinegar is one ingredient in balsamic vinaigrette. A vinaigrette is simply an oil and vinegar based salad dressing. So now that we have that cleared up, let’s move on…

How Long is Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette Good?

Since this homemade dressing does not contain stabilizers and preservatives, you should only keep it refrigerated for about four to five days. The fresh garlic and dried herbs contain natural yeasts and molds that can cause spoilage. Because of this, I’ve made this recipe for a fairly small, 3/4 cup sized batch so you hopefully won’t have much leftover or going to waste.

Finished homemade balsamic vinaigrette on a spoon over the mouth of the mason jar

What is This Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette Good With?

As I mentioned above, I use this salad dressing all the time and I sometimes make variations on this basic recipe. Here are some recipes where I’ve used this delicious balsamic vinaigrette in the past: Autumn Kale and Apple Salad, Tomato Mozzarella Pasta Salad, Grilled Vegetable Pasta Salad, and Spinach and Orzo Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Variations:

Here are a few options for customizing your balsamic vinaigrette:

  • Skip the mayo, this will create a thinner, lighter balsamic vinaigrette
  • Add grated Parmesan 
  • Use minced shallots instead of minced garlic for a milder flavor
  • Add a touch of honey for a sweeter vinaigrette
  • Use fresh herbs if you have them. Oregano also goes well with this dressing.

Don’t Skip the Dijon!

People always ask if they have to use Dijon mustard in my dressing recipes because they don’t like the flavor of Dijon. Dijon mustard plays a very important role in vinaigrettes. Dijon has the unique molecular quality of being an emulsifier, which means it can bond to both water and oil. This is what keeps your dressing mixed instead of it immediately separating after stirring. And don’t worry, the amount is so small that you can’t taste that Dijon flavor!

 

Easy Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette

This super simple homemade balsamic vinaigrette is perfect for all your green salads and pasta salads and has several options for customizing!

  • 1/3 cup olive oil ($0.55)
  • 3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar ($0.41)
  • 2 Tbsp mayonnaise ($0.17)
  • 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard ($0.09)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced ($0.08)
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.01)
  • freshly cracked pepper ($0.02)
  1. Add all the ingredients to a jar, bowl, or blender. Close the jar and shake, whisk in the bowl, or pulse in a blender until the ingredients are combined and smooth.

  2. Let the dressing stand 5-10 minutes for the flavors to blend, then serve or refrigerate for up to 5 days.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

A spoon lifting some homemade balsamic vinaigrette out of a small bowl

How to Make Balsamic Vinaigrette – Step by Step Photos

Colavita balsamic vinegar bottle

Since balsamic vinegar is the main flavor in this salad dressing, you do want to make sure you use one that is decent. Lately I’ve been loving this Colavita balsamic vinegar (not sponsored). It is a mid-range priced balsamic vinegar, but the flavor is really great. 

Balsamic vinaigrette ingredients in a mason jar

Add 1/3 cup olive oil, 3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, 2 Tbsp mayonnaise, 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard, 1 minced clove of garlic, 1/2 tsp dried basil, 1/4 tsp salt, and some freshly cracked pepper to a jar, bowl, or blender.

finished homemade balsamic vinaigrette in a small bowl with a spoon

Then just close up the jar and shake, whisk if it’s in a bowl, or pulse with the blender until the ingredients are incorporated. Let the dressing sit for five to ten minutes to allow the flavors some time to blend, then serve or refrigerate for up to five days!

Parmesan Balsamic Vinaigrette being poured onto a bowl of Tomato Mozzarella Salad from a jar.

Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette shown here with my Tomato Mozzarella Pasta Salad (this version has grated Parmesan added).

The post Easy Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Autumn Kale and Apple Salad

I’m moving forward full speed ahead with indulging my autumn obsession, despite the fact that it’s still 95 degrees outside. A good compromise between the crushing heat and my desire for all things fall is a fall-inspired salad. So this week I made this insanely delish Autumn Kale and Apple Salad. It’s so good, guys. […]

The post Autumn Kale and Apple Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

I’m moving forward full speed ahead with indulging my autumn obsession, despite the fact that it’s still 95 degrees outside. A good compromise between the crushing heat and my desire for all things fall is a fall-inspired salad. So this week I made this insanely delish Autumn Kale and Apple Salad. It’s so good, guys. Like so, so, so good. Like, “oops, I just ate a half pound of kale,” good.

Overhead view of a plate full of Autumn Kale and Apple Salad, drizzled with balsamic vinaigrette and a black fork on the side of the plate.

Kale Substitutions

I know, not everyone loves kale as much as I do, and I can respect that. This salad would also be great on a more tender green, like spinach or spring mix. If using a tender salad green, just skip the step where I massaged the dressing into the kale.

Blue Cheese Substitutions

If you can’t do blue cheese, don’t worry. Feta or chevre (goat cheese) would also be amazing. You could even shred something like white cheddar onto this salad!

What Type of Apple Should I Use?

I used Jazz apples, which is a nice crisp and fairly tart apple. I suggest getting an apple variety that is at least semi-tart, since you have a good deal of sweetness from the candied walnuts. Check out this cool apple comparison chart from Sprouts Farmer’s Market for reference. 

Close up side view of Autumn Kale and Apple Salad on the plate with dressing.

How to Store Autumn Kale and Apple Salad

If you’re not going to serve all four servings (or two larger sized servings) of this salad at once, it’s best to keep the ingredients separate until just before serving. The kale will continue to wilt from the dressing when refrigerated, and I personally think the salad is best when the dressing is massaged into the salad just before serving. That keeps the kale fluffy, but not dry or tough.

 

Autumn Kale and Apple Salad

All the flavors of fall come together in this Autumn Kale and Apple Salad, with candied walnuts and a homemade balsamic vinaigrette.

Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • 1/3 cup olive oil ($0.55)
  • 3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar ($0.41)
  • 2 Tbsp mayonnaise ($0.17)
  • 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard ($0.09)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced ($0.08)
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.01)
  • freshly cracked pepper ($0.02)

Candied Walnuts

  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped ($0.60)
  • 1/2 Tbsp butter ($0.07)
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar ($0.08)
  • 1 pinch salt ($0.01)

Salad

  • 8 oz. torn kale leaves (about 12 cups) ($2.13)
  • 1 apple ($0.52)
  • 2 Tbsp crumbled blue cheese ($0.30)
  1. Make the balsamic vinaigrette first, so the flavors have time to blend. Add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mayonnaise, Dijon, minced garlic, dried basil, salt, and some freshly cracked pepper to a jar, bowl, or blender. Close the jar and shake, whisk in the bowl, or blend until the dressing is smooth. Set the dressing aside.

  2. Next make the candied walnuts. Add the butter, brown sugar, and a pinch of salt to a small non-stick skillet. Heat over medium while stirring, just until the brown sugar begins to melt and sizzle around the edges (one minute).

  3. Add the chopped walnuts to the skillet and stir to combine with the partially melted brown sugar. Continue to cook over medium heat, stirring every 10-15 seconds, until the brown sugar fully melts (looks glossy instead of grainy) and completely coats the walnuts.

  4. Remove the skillet from the heat immediately and pour the hot candied walnuts out onto a piece of parchment. Spread the walnut pieces out in a single layer and let cool (about 10 minutes).

  5. Add the torn kale leaves to a large bowl. Add about 2 Tbsp of the balsamic vinaigrette and massage the dressing into the torn kale leaves for about 2 minutes. The kale will wilt to about half the volume.

  6. Cut the apple into four quarters, then cut the core off of each piece. Slice each quarter of the apple into thin pieces.

  7. Divide the massaged kale between four plates. Add apple slices, a tablespoon or two of candied walnuts, and about 1/2 Tbsp blue cheese to each salad. Drizzle a little more balsamic vinaigrette over each, then serve!

Scroll down to see the step by step photos!

Close up front view of an Autumn Kale and Apple Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

How to Make Autumn Kale and Apple Salad – Step by Step Photos

Balsamic vinaigrette ingredients in a mason jar

Start with the homemade balsamic vinaigrette. Add 1/3 cup olive oil, 3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, 2 Tbsp mayonnaise, 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard, 1 clove of garlic (minced), 1/2 tsp dried basil, 1/4 tsp salt, and some freshly cracked pepper in a jar, bowl, or blender.

Finished homemade balsamic vinaigrette on a spoon over the mouth of the mason jar

Close and shake the jar, use a whisk in a bowl, or blend the dressing in a blender until smooth. Set the dressing aside.

Brown sugar, butter, and salt in a small skillet

Next, make the candied almonds. Add 1/2 Tbsp butter, 2 Tbsp brown sugar, and a pinch of salt to a small non-stick skillet. Heat over medium while stirring just until the brown sugar begins to melt a bit and sizzle around the edges (about one minute). It should still be a little grainy (see photo below).

Walnuts added to skillet with molten brown sugar

Once the brown sugar has begun to melt (but still looks grainy), add 1/2 cup chopped walnuts and stir to combine. Continue to cook over medium, stirring every 10-15 seconds, until the brown sugar is fully melted (looks glossy, not grainy) and fully coats the walnuts (about 3 minutes).

Candied walnuts cooling on parchment

Pour the candied walnuts out onto a sheet of parchment, spreading them into a single layer, and allow them to cool. The candy coating will harden as they cool.

Bag of torn kale leaves

Now it’s time to prepare the kale. I used a LOT of kale (8 oz. or about 12 cups) because when you massage the dressing into the kale leaves they deflate by about half. So, I used about 2/3 of this large 12 oz. bag of torn kale leaves.

Balsamic Vinaigrette being drizzled over kale in a bowl

Place the torn kale leaves in a very large bowl, then drizzle about 2 Tbsp of the balsamic vinaigrette over top. Use your hands to massage the dressing into the kale (this should only take about 2 minutes). The kale will become dark and glossy when the dressing is massaged in.

Sliced jazz apple on a cutting board with a chef's knife.

Cut an apple into quarters, then cut the core off each quarter. Slice each quarter into thins strips.

Portion kale onto plates

Divide the massaged kale between four plates (or two if you want two larger meal-sized salads).

Apple slices added to salads

Add the apple slices to the salads.

 

Blue cheese sprinkled over each salad.

Add candied walnuts and sprinkle about 1/2 Tbsp crumbled blue cheese over each salad.

Balsamic vinaigrette being drizzled over an Autumn Kale and Apple Salad with a spoon

Finally, drizzle a little more of the balsamic vinaigrette over top, then serve!

Close up overhead view of Autumn Kale and Apple Salad, with balsamic vinaigrette and a fork on the side.

Seriously, tho.  🤤

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Broccoli Cheese Soup

This Broccoli Cheese Soup recipe is easy to make in less than 30 minutes and lightened up a bit with no heavy cream, yet still tastes just as cozy and comforting and delicious as ever. Soup season has officially returned.  And I, for one, am here for it. ♡ I already have a list a mile long […]

This Broccoli Cheese Soup recipe is easy to make in less than 30 minutes and lightened up a bit with no heavy cream, yet still tastes just as cozy and comforting and delicious as ever.

Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe

Soup season has officially returned.  And I, for one, am here for it.

I already have a list a mile long on my phone of new soup recipes that I’m hoping to share on the blog this winter.  (Stay tuned!)  But for our very first soup recipe of the season today, I thought we could return to a cozy classic that I’ve been craving for months — classic broccoli cheese soup.

Oh my goodness, I absolutely adore a good bowl of broccoli cheddar soup.  It always feels so cozy and comforting during the wintertime, especially served up in a bread bowl or with a nice crusty baguette.  And I have to say that I’m especially partial to this particular broccoli cheese soup recipe, because when I’m the one cooking it from scratch, I get to control the ingredients.

For example, by contrast to most restaurant broccoli cheddar soups, this recipe is lightened-up with milk instead of lots of heavy cream.  I also love making it with a good, aged, sharp white cheddar cheese, in order to add a big kick of flavor (and avoid those unnecessary orange food colorings).  This recipe also allows you to control the tenderness of the broccoli, keeping it more on the crisp side of simmering it until it’s super-soft (or pureeing the soup until it’s completely creamy).  Most of all, though, I just love this recipe because it tastes super fresh and flavorful, and is made with so much broccoli.

And it’s easy to make in just 30 minutes!  Soup time!
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