Citrus Immunity Shot

This super-simple-to-prepare, this Citrus Immunity Shot recipe is made with immune-boosting citrus, turmeric, and garlic, a delicious way to start your day! Citrus Immunity Shot This wellness shot recipe nourishes, fuels and aids your body in the morning and it’s so easy to make. If you’ve ever purchased immunity shots in the store, you will […]

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This super-simple-to-prepare, this Citrus Immunity Shot recipe is made with immune-boosting citrus, turmeric, and garlic, a delicious way to start your day!

This super-simple-to-prepare Citrus Immunity Shot is made with immune-boosting citrus, turmeric, and garlic, a delicious way to start your day!
Citrus Immunity Shot

This wellness shot recipe nourishes, fuels and aids your body in the morning and it’s so easy to make. If you’ve ever purchased immunity shots in the store, you will know how expensive they are. Making them from scratch saves money!

(more…)

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3 No-Cook Dinners for When You Want to Turn off the Stove

It’s the end of the long workday (or the start of an extra-long week) and we’re hungry. Like, “can’t-think-straight” hungry. Luckily, Food52 contributor EmilyC wants to do all the thinking for us. In Dinner’s Ready, her monthly column on weeknight wond…

It's the end of the long workday (or the start of an extra-long week) and we're hungry. Like, "can't-think-straight" hungry. Luckily, Food52 contributor EmilyC wants to do all the thinking for us. In Dinner's Ready, her monthly column on weeknight wonders, she shares three simple, flavor-packed recipes that are connected by a single idea or ingredient. Stick with Emily, and you'll have a good dinner on the table in no time. Today, three summery meals that let us rev up the flavor but keep the temps down.


Every summer, I reach a point when I practically banish my sheet pans and skillets from my kitchen. Not that I don't love them (trust me, they’ll be in heavy use this fall for dinners like this and this!), but many days it’s just too hot and sticky to turn on my oven, stand over the stove, or even fire up the grill come dinnertime.

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Raspberry Yogurt Ice Pops

These easy, healthy Raspberry Yogurt Ice Pops, made with just three ingredients, are a wonderful treat on a hot summer day. Raspberry Yogurt Ice Pops These 3-ingredient Raspberry Yogurt Popsicles are such a cool and refreshing summer dessert. I macerate the fresh raspberries with a little organic cane sugar to release their juices. Then I […]

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These easy, healthy Raspberry Yogurt Ice Pops, made with just three ingredients, are a wonderful treat on a hot summer day.

Raspberry Yogurt Ice Pops
Raspberry Yogurt Ice Pops

These 3-ingredient Raspberry Yogurt Popsicles are such a cool and refreshing summer dessert. I macerate the fresh raspberries with a little organic cane sugar to release their juices. Then I mix in the yogurt and pour them into molds. Easy and delicious! If you’re looking for more berry popsicles, try my Raspberry Coconut Chia Pudding Pops and Berry Yogurt Popsicles.

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Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream—Zero Churning Required

We’re partnering with California goat cheese maker Cypress Grove to show you all the ways you can enjoy goat cheese at every meal, including dessert! Here, our Absolute Best Tests columnist Ella Quittner shares her recipe for a no-churn strawberry ice …

We're partnering with California goat cheese maker Cypress Grove to show you all the ways you can enjoy goat cheese at every meal, including dessert! Here, our Absolute Best Tests columnist Ella Quittner shares her recipe for a no-churn strawberry ice cream with a secret ingredient that makes it sing.


Quarantine has made home cooks scrappier than ever.

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Boozy Watermelon Lime Granita

This Boozy Watermelon Lime Granita is part cocktail, part dessert. The perfect, frozen adult treat for hot summer days. Boozy Watermelon Lime Granita Sweet, juicy watermelons are one of the best things about summer. I love eating watermelon by itself, but it also makes an excellent base for a fruity drink. For some more refreshing […]

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This Boozy Watermelon Lime Granita is part cocktail, part dessert. The perfect, frozen adult treat for hot summer days.

This Boozy Watermelon Lime Granita is the perfect, frozen adult treat for hot summer days.
Boozy Watermelon Lime Granita

Sweet, juicy watermelons are one of the best things about summer. I love eating watermelon by itself, but it also makes an excellent base for a fruity drink. For some more refreshing watermelon drinks, try Chia Watermelon Fresca or Watermelon Agua Fresca. And for when you want a cocktail, my Watermelon Martinis are delicious.

(more…)

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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.

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Cottage Cheese Crab Bowl

Every now and then I like to share things with you that aren’t exactly “recipes” but are just the random bowl meals that I make out of things found in my fridge. I’ve discovered so many great flavor combinations by experimenting with these bowl meals and I hope they inspire you as well. This Cottage […]

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Every now and then I like to share things with you that aren’t exactly “recipes” but are just the random bowl meals that I make out of things found in my fridge. I’ve discovered so many great flavor combinations by experimenting with these bowl meals and I hope they inspire you as well. This Cottage Cheese Crab Bowl is my most recent favorite. It’s light and fresh for this early summer heat, but still filling enough to serve as a whole meal (for me, at least).

Sriracha being drizzled onto a cottage cheese crab bowl, from above

What’s In This Bowl

This cottage cheese crab bowl was inspired by the classic sushi roll, the California roll, which contains crab (or often times imitation crab), cucumber, and avocado. I had been seeing imitation crab every time I stopped and Aldi and I eventually started craving it, so I bought a pack, I grabbed a cucumber, and threw them on top of the cottage cheese I had in my fridge. I also went a step further and sprinkled on a little bit of Everything Bagel Seasoning, and a light drizzle of sriracha for fun. It’s not fancy, but it’s soooo good!

P.S. If you have avocado on hand, it would go marvelously with these flavors, just like it does in the California roll. 

What is Everything Bagel Seasoning?

Everything bagel seasoning has been taking the food market by storm lately. It’s basically the mix of ingredients that you’d find on top of an “everything” bagel, or sesame seeds, poppy seeds, flakey salt, dehydrated garlic, and dehydrated onion. I’m not sure who marketed this seasoning blend first, but the first time I saw it was at Trader Joes. It’s gotten so popular lately that several other grocery stores are now making their own version, including Kroger and Aldi. 

What is Imitation Crab?

Imitation crab might throw some people off, and I totally get it. Imitation crab is basically fish that has been processed to taste and look more like crab. It’s probably not the most wholesome choice of proteins, but it’s so much less expensive than real crab and since I only eat it maybe once a year, I’m not going to sweat it. I’m all about everything in moderation, and I encourage everyone to make the food choices that they are comfortable with. Here is a great article from Healthline breaking down exactly what imitation crab is and how it compares to real crab, so you can decide for yourself: What is Imitation Crab and Should I Eat It?

Can I Substitute…

The whole idea of a “bowl meal” is that you allow yourself to be a little experimental, throw in whatever you have, and just go with it. So, can you substitute the imitation crab? Sure, go with what you have. Maybe a soft boiled egg, some canned tuna, real crab, cooked salmon, or smoked salmon. Can you substitute the Everything Bagel Seasoning? Sure, maybe try some plain sesame seeds, or just some freshly cracked pepper and flakey sea salt. Can you substitute the cottage cheese? Sure, try a bed of rice, or maybe some fresh greens. I can’t guarantee you’ll like any of these substitutes, but the point is that you try it and see for yourself. :)

Close up of a bite of Cottage Cheese Crab Bowl on a fork

 
Overhead view of a Cottage Cheese Crab Bowl with a black fork in the side

Cottage Cheese Crab Bowl

This Cottage Cheese Crab Bowl is the perfect light, fresh, and filling lunch for summer. It also meal preps well, so pack a few to take to work for lunch! 
Total Cost $1.21 each
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Calories 149.2kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup cottage cheese $0.27
  • 1/2 cup chopped cucumber $0.32
  • 1/3 cup imitation crab $0.58
  • 1/4 tsp everything bagel seasoning $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp sriracha $0.02

Instructions

  • Add the cottage cheese, chopped cucumber, and crab meat to a bowl. Top with everything bagel seasoning and a light drizzle of sriracha.
  • Serve immediately, or refrigerate until ready to eat, up to four days.

Nutrition

Serving: 1bowl | Calories: 149.2kcal | Carbohydrates: 15.4g | Protein: 15.7g | Fat: 2.8g | Sodium: 710.4mg | Fiber: 0.8g

Want more bowl meals? Check out our bowl meal category

How to Make Cottage Cheese Crab Bowls – Step by Step Photos

Sliced cucumber on a cutting board with a knife

Chop about a ½ cup cucumber. Depending on the girth of your cucumber, you may want to either halve or quarter the slices to make them bite-sized.

Imitation crab meat package

This is the imitation crab meat that I got at Aldi. You can usually find it in the seafood department in grocery stores, but at Aldi it’s with the seasonal refrigerated items. So I’m not sure if they’ll continue to carry this item forever.

Everything bagel seasoning bottle

And here is the everything bagel seasoning I used. I’ve used different brands and each seems to have a different salt content, so you may just want to add your seasoning to the bowl according to your tastes. I find that this one from Aldi has a lot more salt than the one from Kroger (I prefer the less salt version). 

Adding everything bagel seasoning to the crab bowl

To make the cottage cheese crab bowl, start with ½ cup cottage cheese, add ½ cup chopped cucumber, about ⅓ cup of the imitation crab, and then sprinkle on some of the everything bagel seasoning (I used ¼ tsp, but would have used more if it had less salt).

cottage cheese crab bowl being drizzled with sriracha

Finally, drizzle a little sriracha on top.

Finished Cottage Cheese Crab Bowl with a black fork in the side

Then enjoy! This bowl meal preps really well, so feel free to make a few for easy grab and go lunches later in the week!

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Honey Vanilla Cottage Cheese Fruit Dip

I don’t know if you’ve heard, but I’ve fallen in love with a new budget ingredient: cottage cheese. A lot of people are turned off by the texture of cottage cheese, but when you whip it up in a blender it becomes as smooth and creamy as yogurt, and is just as versatile! I made […]

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I don’t know if you’ve heard, but I’ve fallen in love with a new budget ingredient: cottage cheese. A lot of people are turned off by the texture of cottage cheese, but when you whip it up in a blender it becomes as smooth and creamy as yogurt, and is just as versatile! I made a savory Garlic Herb Cottage Cheese Dip a couple months ago, so I thought I’d also make a sweet version for dipping fruit. This rich, tangy, and sweet Honey Vanilla Cottage Cheese Fruit Dip is a deliciously sensible option for dessert.

Cottage Cheese Fruit Dip with Honey and Vanilla

A hand dipping a slice of apple into the fruit dip on a tray of fruit

Why Cottage Cheese?

Cottage cheese provides a similar creamy-tangy flavor and high protein content as Greek yogurt, but at a fraction of the price. The 24oz. tub of cottage cheese that I bought was only $1.59, compared to about $3.99 for Greek yogurt. Once the cottage cheese is puréed in a blender, the texture is thick and smooth, and like Greek yogurt, the flavor is versatile enough to pair with both sweet and savory ingredients.

What Type of Cottage Cheese is Best?

The brand and type of cottage cheese matters here. For the creamiest dip, avoid low-fat cottage cheese. I used Aldi’s “full fat” cottage cheese, which is only 4% milk fat, or slightly more than whole milk, and the dip was deliciously rich and creamy. I also tested this recipe with Breakstone’s low-fat cottage cheese (2% milk fat) and the result was a little on the chalky side. So make sure you’re using a cottage cheese that you enjoy the flavor of plain, and then it will surely taste good in the dip.

How to Use the Fruit Dip

Besides the obvious use to dip your fresh cut fruit, you can also use this fruit dip for other things! You can add it to your fruit smoothie, just like you’d add yogurt, for a creamy shot of protein. You can use it to make a parfait with fresh fruit and granola, or you can make some “fruit nachos” with cinnamon pita chips, finely diced fresh fruit, and a drizzle of this fruit dip. 

A fork dipping a piece of pineapple into the cottage cheese fruit dip, surrounded by fruit.

 
A hand dipping a fresh strawberry into the fruit dip on a fruit platter
Print

Honey Vanilla Cottage Cheese Fruit Dip

Cottage cheese is whipped up into a silky smooth texture, sweetened with honey, and flavored with vanilla in this deliciously sensible dessert fruit dip. 
Total Cost $0.94 recipe / $0.24 serving
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 4 about ¼ cup each
Calories 76.2kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cottage cheese (4% fat) $0.53
  • 2 Tbsp honey $0.25
  • ½ tsp vanilla $0.15
  • 1 tsp lemon juice (optional)* $0.01
  • 1 Tbsp water $0.00

Instructions

  • Add all the ingredients to a blender and purée until smooth.
  • Serve immediately with fresh cut fruit for dipping, or refrigerate until ready to eat.

Video

Notes

*Lemon juice is optional. With lemon juice the dip has a slightly tangier flavor, like cheesecake. 

Nutrition

Serving: 0.25cup | Calories: 76.2kcal | Carbohydrates: 11.33g | Protein: 5.5g | Fat: 1.2g | Sodium: 162.25mg | Fiber: 0.03g

A bowl of cottage cheese fruit dip in the middle of a fruit platter

How to Make Cottage Cheese Fruit Dip – Step by Step Photos

Cottage cheese, honey, vanilla, lemon juice, and water in the blender

Add 1 cup cottage cheese (4% fat), 2 Tbsp honey, ½ tsp vanilla, 1 tsp lemon juice, and 1 Tbsp water to a blender.

A spoon lifting the blended fruit dip from the blender

Purée the mixture until smooth and creamy. You may need to stop and stir a couple times to really get it going, but once it starts smoothing out, it should blend easily.

A piece of melon being dipped into the cottage cheese fruit dip with a fork

Serve with your favorite fresh fruit and enjoy!

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Tuna Salad Endive Wraps

Tuna Salad loaded with veggies like celery and broccoli, served in endive leaves make a quick and easy, low-carb lunch. Tuna Salad Wraps I love tuna salad with chopped red onion and a splash of red wine vinegar. The addition of broccoli and celery makes it even yummier adding crunch and flavor! Endive leaves are […]

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Tuna Salad loaded with veggies like celery and broccoli, served in endive leaves make a quick and easy, low-carb lunch.

Tuna Salad loaded with veggies served in endive leaves make a quick and easy, low-carb lunch.
Tuna Salad Wraps

I love tuna salad with chopped red onion and a splash of red wine vinegar. The addition of broccoli and celery makes it even yummier adding crunch and flavor! Endive leaves are the perfect lettuce cups for enjoying the tuna salad. More tuna salad recipes you might enjoy are Tuna Melts, Chickpea Tuna Salad, and Canned Tuna Ceviche.

(more…)

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Chimichurri Chickpea Salad

We’re still experiencing a lot of grocery shortages in the middle of this pandemic, but when I ventured out to the grocery store this week I noticed something. The produce department was very well stocked, while many of the shelf stable items were sold out. I presume that’s because people are afraid to buy perishables. So, […]

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We’re still experiencing a lot of grocery shortages in the middle of this pandemic, but when I ventured out to the grocery store this week I noticed something. The produce department was very well stocked, while many of the shelf stable items were sold out. I presume that’s because people are afraid to buy perishables. So, that made me rethink my strategy. I’m going to focus on fresh ingredients for about a week after shopping, then transition into the more shelf stable recipes (like my 15 Pantry Staple Recipes) for the second week, or until my next grocery run. Besides, after eating so many pantry recipes over the past month, I’m craving fresh produce hard. So this week I grabbed some fresh parsley, cilantro, and a pint of tomatoes, and whipped up this SUPER easy Chimichurri Chickpea Salad.

…Because chimichurri is good on anything and everything. ;)

Chickpea Salad with Chimichurri and Feta

Overhead view of Chimichurri Chickpea Salad with triangles of pita bread stuck in the side.

How to Serve Chimichurri Chickpea Salad

This salad is the perfect side dish as the weather starts to warm up. I think this would go great with just about any type of grilled meat, or if you’re cooking inside I can see this matching well with dishes like Garlic Butter Baked Chicken Thighs, Herb Roasted Pork Loin, or Balsamic Chicken and Mushrooms

If you want to turn this into a vegetarian meal, consider chopping up some pita or a crusty bread and stirring it right into the salad to make it like a Panzanella, or adding a few greens and a chopped hard boiled egg.

How to Use Leftover Parsley and Cilantro

Don’t let the rest of the parsley and cilantro go to waste after you make this salad! Parsley and cilantro are great in and on so many other dishes. This chickpea salad recipe uses a half batch of my basic Chimichurri recipe, but you could always make the full size batch and use half on this salad, then use the other half for dipping some crusty bread. That will use up more of your parsley and cilantro.

Here are some other great recipes for using parsley and cilantro:

Make sure to scroll down to the step by step photos to see how I store my leftover feta so it doesn’t go to waste!

Close up side view of the bowl of Chimichurri Chickpea Salad with pita triangles in the side of the bowl

 
Overhead view of a bowl of Chimichurri Chickpea Salad with pita in the side of the bowl
Print

Chimichurri Chickpea Salad

This super simple chickpea salad is bright and flavorful thanks to homemade chimichurri and feta. Goes great with all your summer grilling!
Total Cost $4.36 recipe / $0.73 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 6 about 1 cup each
Calories 328.57kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Chimichurri

  • ½ cup chopped fresh parsley $0.18
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro $0.10
  • ¼ cup olive oil $0.42
  • 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar $0.20
  • 1 clove garlic, minced $0.08
  • ½ tsp dried oregano $0.05
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp crushed red pepper $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02

Salad

  • 2 15oz. cans chickpeas $0.49
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes $1.69
  • 2 oz. feta $1.09

Instructions

  • Make the chimichurri first. Rinse the fresh parsley and cilantro, then drain well. Roughly chop the parsley and cilantro, then add it to a bowl along with the olive oil, red wine vinegar, minced garlic, oregano, cumin, crushed red pepper, and salt. Stir to combine, then set the dressing aside.
  • Rinse and drain both cans of chickpeas. Slice the grape tomatoes in half. Add the chickpeas and tomatoes to a large bowl. Crumble the feta, add it to the bowl, then drizzle the chimichurri over top. Stir to combine. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat (up to four days).

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 328.57kcal | Carbohydrates: 35.67g | Protein: 13.58g | Fat: 15.98g | Sodium: 675.75mg | Fiber: 11.7g

How to Make Chimichurri Chickpea Salad – Step by Step Photos

Chimichurri ingredients in a bowl, not stirred

Make the chimichurri first. Rinse and drain the fresh parsley and cilantro. Roughly chop the parsley and cilantro, you’ll need ½ cup parsley (about ¼ bunch) and about ¼ cup cilantro (a big handful). Add them to the bowl along with 1 minced clove of garlic, ¼ cup olive oil, 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar, ½ tsp dried oregano, ¼ tsp ground cumin, ⅛ tsp crushed red pepper, and ¼ tsp salt.

Mixed chimichurri in a bowl with a spoon

Stir the ingredients together and now you have chimichurri! Set the chimichurri aside.

Chickpeas, tomatoes, and feta in a bowl, chimichurri being poured over top

Rinse and drain 2 15oz. cans of chickpeas. Slice 1 pint of grape tomatoes in half. Crumble 2oz. feta. Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, and feta to a bowl, then pour the chimichurri over top.

Finished chimichurri chickpea salad in a bowl with a spoon

Stir to combine and it’s ready to eat! Or refrigerate for up to 4 days.

block of feta in a freezer bag, inside a plastic container, ready to freeze.

I like to buy my feta in a block, as opposed to pre-crumbled, because it’s easier to save for later. I cut the block into quarters first (right through the plastic) because I usually use about 2oz. per recipe. I then place the rest of the block, still in the original plastic, inside a freezer bag, then inside a re-usable freezer container. I can take out one 2oz. block at a time to use whenever needed!

Overhead view of a bowl of Chimichurri Chickpea Salad with pita in the side of the bowl

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