Creamy Harissa Tahini Pasta Sauce

This harissa tahini pasta sauce is ready in 20 minutes, so it is perfect for busy weeknights. It is rich, creamy, and spicy. If you are looking for a super simple pasta recipe, this will be your new best friend. Serve it with asparagus and spinach or m…

This harissa tahini pasta sauce is ready in 20 minutes, so it is perfect for busy weeknights. It is rich, creamy, and spicy. If you are looking for a super simple pasta recipe, this will be your new best friend. Serve it with asparagus and spinach or mix and match it with your favorite veggies...

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The post Creamy Harissa Tahini Pasta Sauce appeared first on My Pure Plants.

Queso Blanco (White Cheese Dip)

This Tex-Mex queso blanco (white cheese dip) recipe is easy to make in about 20 minutes, perfectly melty and scoop-able, and irresistibly delicious. Meet my all-time favorite queso recipe. ♡ Anyone who has followed this blog for awhile knows that excellent chips, salsa and queso are some of my favorite things in the world. And […]

This Tex-Mex queso blanco (white cheese dip) recipe is easy to make in about 20 minutes, perfectly melty and scoop-able, and irresistibly delicious.

Queso Blanco (White Cheese Dip)

Meet my all-time favorite queso recipe. ♡

Anyone who has followed this blog for awhile knows that excellent chips, salsa and queso are some of my favorite things in the world. And after having made homemade cheese dip about a million different ways over the years, this Tex-Mex queso blanco recipe continues to be the unbeatable gold standard in my book.

It’s inspired by the famous espinaca con queso at Jose Pepper’s, which I was completely obsessed with back when we lived in Kansas City. And true to its name, it’s loaded up with lots of fresh spinach, as well as diced onion, jalapeño, garlic, tomatoes, chiles and cilantro for lots of zesty flavor. It’s also made with my preferred blend of Monterrey Jack and white American cheeses, which I’m going to insist that you use if you want a genuinely melty, creamy, scoop-able cheese dip. (I’ve tested at least a dozen varieties of Mexican and American cheeses when making queso over the years, and have found this combination is key for achieving a melty vs gritty texture.) And it is absolutely, irresistibly, can’t-stop-going-in-for-another-dip delicious.

I’m also a big fan of this queso recipe because it be ready go in about 15 minutes from start to finish, making it perfect for easy entertaining. And if you happen to have any leftovers, it even reheats well the next day.

Alright, fellow cheese lovers, let’s make some restaurant-style queso together!

Queso Blanco in Saucepan (more…)

Spinach Mushroom French Bread Pizzas

These super easy Spinach Mushroom French Bread Pizzas combine homemade garlic bread with a cheesy spinach mushroom topping.

The post Spinach Mushroom French Bread Pizzas appeared first on Budget Bytes.

French bread pizzas are a total weeknight win. They’re fast and easy, you can top them with whatever you have in your fridge, and they’re always delicious. This week, I had some leftover frozen spinach that was begging to be used up, so I whipped up these quick Spinach Mushroom French Bread Pizzas. They have a garlic bread base for extra flavor and then are topped with a simple mix of spinach, sautéed mushrooms, and cheese. Simple but perfect!

Originally posted 7-5-2015, updated 4-20-2022.

Close up overhead view of spinach mushroom french bread pizzas.

Cheese Options

I used a combination of mozzarella and Swiss cheese for my pizzas, but there is a lot of flexibility here. You could do any of the following cheeses, or any combination of two or more:

  • Mozzarella
  • Provolone
  • Swiss
  • Goat cheese
  • Feta
  • Monterey jack
  • Smoked gouda

And, admittedly, these pizzas are not very cheese heavy, so if you like lots of cheese you may want to double the amount listed in the recipe below!

What About Pizza Sauce?

I made my pizzas kind of like a white pizza or loaded garlic bread, sans red sauce. But if you happen to have leftover pizza sauce (because sometimes that happens) you can spread a layer onto the bread before the spinach and mushrooms, or use your sauce on the side for dunking!

What Else Can I Add?

Diced-up cooked chicken would go really nicely with these pizzas, as would some artichoke hearts, olives, tomatoes (fresh or sun-dried), or Parmesan. That’s what’s great about pizza, you can put just about anything on there and it will be great!

Close up of a piece of a spinach mushroom french bread pizza held in a hand.

Close up of a piece of a spinach mushroom french bread pizza held in a hand.

Spinach Mushroom French Bread Pizzas

These super easy Spinach Mushroom French Bread Pizzas combine homemade garlic bread with a cheesy spinach mushroom topping.
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American
Total Cost $7.62 recipe / $1.91 serving
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 533kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Spinach and Mushrooms

  • 8 oz. mushrooms $2.79
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil $0.16
  • 1 clove garlic, minced $0.08
  • 1/8 tsp salt $0.01
  • 1/8 tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.01
  • 8 oz. frozen spinach $1.00

Garlic Butter

  • 2 Tbsp butter, room temperature $0.20
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil $0.32
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced $0.16
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder $0.10
  • 1/8 tsp salt $0.01

Pizzas

  • 1 loaf French bread $1.50
  • 1 cup shredded cheese* $1.25
  • 1/8 tsp crushed red pepper $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.01

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Slice the mushrooms, then add them to a skillet with 1 Tbsp olive oil, 1 clove minced garlic, tsp salt, and tsp pepper. Sauté the mushrooms over medium heat until they have softened and all of the water has evaporated out of the skillet.
  • Add the frozen spinach to the skillet with the mushrooms and continue to sauté until the spinach is heated through and most of the moisture has evaporated (there should be no water pooling in the skillet). Transfer the mushrooms and spinach to a bowl to cool.
  • To make the garlic butter, combine the butter, olive oil, minced garlic, garlic powder, and salt in a small bowl. Stir well to create a soft garlic butter mixture.
  • Cut a loaf of French bread in half length-wise, then slice each half-open. Place the pieces of bread on a parchment-lined baking sheet, cut sides up. Spread the garlic butter mixture over the surface of each piece of bread.
  • Add half of the shredded cheese, the remaining tsp cracked black pepper, and crushed red pepper to the bowl with the slightly cooled spinach and mushrooms. Stir to combine.
  • Divide the spinach mushroom mixture between the four pieces of bread and spread it over the surface of the bread. Top with the remaining cheese.
  • Bake the pizzas in the preheated 350ºF oven for about 15 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and slightly browned on top. Enjoy hot.

Notes

* You can use any combination of cheeses for this recipe. I suggest mozzarella, provolone, swiss, feta, goat cheese, or a combination of any of those cheeses.

Nutrition

Serving: 1pizza | Calories: 533kcal | Carbohydrates: 58g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 25g | Sodium: 1015mg | Fiber: 5g

Love French Bread Pizza? Check out my classic French Bread Pizza recipe for more topping ideas!

a spinach mushroom french bread pizza broken in half on a plate.

How to Make Spinach Mushroom French Bread Pizza – Step by Step Photos

Sliced mushrooms on a cutting board.

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Slice 8oz. mushrooms. I used baby bella mushrooms, but white button mushrooms work fine as well.

Sautéed mushrooms in the skillet.

Add the sliced mushrooms to a skillet with 1 Tbsp olive oil, 1 clove of minced garlic, ⅛ tsp salt, and ⅛ tsp pepper. Sauté over medium heat until the mushrooms have softened and all of the water in the skillet has evaporated.

sautéed spinach in the skillet with the mushrooms

Add ½ lb. frozen spinach to the skillet and continue to stir and cook until the spinach is heated through and most of the moisture has evaporated from the skillet. There should be no water pooling in the skillet. Transfer the spinach and mushrooms to a bowl to cool slightly.

Garlic butter ingredients in a bowl.

Add 2 Tbsp butter (room temperature), 2 Tbsp olive oil, 2 cloves of garlic (minced), ½ tsp garlic powder, and ⅛ tsp salt to a bowl and stir until it is all well combined.

Garlic butter bread on a baking sheet.

Line a baking sheet with parchment for easy cleanup. Cut a loaf of French bread in half length-wise then cut each half-open. Place the pieces of bread on the baking sheet, cut sides up. Spread the garlic butter mixture over the surface of the bread. (I accidentally melted my garlic butter, so I brushed it over the surface.)

Cheese mixed into spinach and mushrooms.

Add ½ cup shredded cheese, ⅛ tsp freshly cracked pepper, and ⅛ tsp crushed red pepper into the partially-cooled spinach and mushroom mixture.

Topped french bread pizzas.

Divide the cheesy spinach mushroom mixture between the four pieces of bread, then top with the remaining cheese.

baked spinach mushroom french bread pizzas.

Bake the spinach mushroom French bread pizzas in the preheated 350ºF oven for 15 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and slightly browned on top.

Side view of baked spinach mushroom French bread pizzas on the baking sheet.

Easy and delish!

The post Spinach Mushroom French Bread Pizzas appeared first on Budget Bytes.

The Ultimate Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

If you’re into smoothies that keep you full until lunchtime and don’t require a long list of ingredients or added protein powder, you’ll LOVE this peanut butter banana smoothie! 
It’s super delicious, filling, balanced, and comes together in 5 min…

The Ultimate Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

If you’re into smoothies that keep you full until lunchtime and don’t require a long list of ingredients or added protein powder, you’ll LOVE this peanut butter banana smoothie! 

It’s super delicious, filling, balanced, and comes together in 5 minutes with 4 simple ingredients! Keep it simple, or add optional spinach, flax, or hemp seeds for a nutrient boost. Let’s do this!

How to Make a Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

Get ready, because we’re about to show you how 4 simple ingredients (!) combine to make a delicious, filling, nutrient-packed smoothie!

The Ultimate Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie from Minimalist Baker →

Polenta Lasagna

Lasagna has always been one of my favorite meals. It is hearty, comforting, and feeds a crowd. A few of our favorite lasagna recipes include: vegetable lasagna, skillet lasagna, lasagna roll-ups, and this Polenta Lasagna. Lasagna is typically made with…

Lasagna has always been one of my favorite meals. It is hearty, comforting, and feeds a crowd. A few of our favorite lasagna recipes include: vegetable lasagna, skillet lasagna, lasagna roll-ups, and this Polenta Lasagna. Lasagna is typically made with pasta, but for this recipe, I use polenta. To keep things super easy, I use…

Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas

These Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas are filled with melty, creamy cheese, sautéed mushrooms, and a healthy dose of spinach.

The post Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas appeared first on Budget Bytes.

I’m of the opinion that pretty much everything tastes better in a toasted tortilla. I often take leftover ingredients from my fridge and turn them into a tasty quesadilla. So that’s exactly what I made with the leftover frozen spinach in my freezer. Easy, cheesy, creamy Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas!

A stack of spinach and mushroom quesadillas on a wooden cutting board

To craft these Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas, I used my Creamy Chicken and Spinach Quesadillas as a template. The filling is a combination of your main ingredient (in this case mushrooms and spinach), cheese, and a little bit of sour cream to make everything extra creamy and delicious. That little bit of sour cream really takes the quesadillas to the next level!

Can I Use Fresh Spinach?

I also tested this recipe using fresh spinach, just to see which would be better. I added the fresh, roughly chopped spinach to the quesadilla filling without sautéing. The quesadillas were good, but they did get a bit watery if they sat in the hot skillet too long or sat on the plate too long before eating.

Another option for fresh spinach would be to sauté the fresh spinach down until almost all of the water is cooked out, but you’d likely need a very large quantity of spinach yield enough to fill the quesadillas once sautéed.

Cheese Options

I kept my spinach and mushroom quesadillas very simple with classic mozzarella cheese, but you could have fun here and add more flavor by swapping out the cheese or adding a second type of cheese. Adding a few crumbles of feta or a couple of tablespoons of grated Parmesan to the mozzarella would add an extra punch of flavor. Mixing in some smoked gouda would also be amazing! If you want things a little more spicy, you could use pepper jack in place of the mozzarella.

A cheesy spinach quesadilla being torn in half, cheese stretching between pieces
A stack of spinach and mushroom quesadillas on a wooden cutting board

Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas

These Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas are filled with melty, creamy cheese, sautéed mushrooms, and a healthy dose of spinach.
Course Lunch, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine American
Total Cost $5.73 recipe / $1.15 each
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 5 quesadillas
Calories 297kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 8 oz. mushrooms $1.69
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.04
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp salt, divided $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked pepper, divided $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp crushed red pepper $0.02
  • 1/2 lb. frozen chopped spinach $0.84
  • 8 oz. mozzarella*, shredded $1.85
  • 1/4 cup sour cream $0.29
  • 5 7-inch flour tortillas $0.94

Instructions

  • Slice the mushrooms and add them to a skillet with the cooking oil, garlic powder, crushed red pepper, and half of the salt and pepper. Sauté over medium until the mushrooms have release all of their water and it has evaporated out of the skillet. Set the mushrooms aside.
  • While the mushrooms are cooking, thaw the frozen spinach then squeeze out as much of the water as possible. You should have about one cup of spinach (loosely packed) once squeezed.
  • Add the mushrooms, spinach, shredded mozzarella, sour cream, and another tsp each of salt and pepper to a bowl, then stir to combine.
  • Add about ½ cup of the cheesy spinach mushroom mixture to each tortilla, spread it out to cover one side of the tortilla, then fold to close.
  • Cook the quesadillas in a skillet over medium heat until brown and crispy on the outside and melty on the inside (I do not use butter or oil in the skillet, but can if you want a more fried texture).
  • Slice the quesadillas and serve!

Notes

*You can swap out or mix in your favorite type of cheese.

Nutrition

Serving: 1quesadilla | Calories: 297kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 18g | Sodium: 652mg | Fiber: 3g
Two hands holding a stack of quesadillas

How to Make Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas – Step by Step Photos

Sliced mushrooms on a cutting board

Slice 8oz. mushrooms. I used baby bella, but you can use whatever type you like.

Sautéed mushrooms in a skillet

Add the mushrooms to a skillet along with 1 Tbsp cooking oil, ¼ tsp garlic powder, ⅛ tsp salt, ⅛ tsp pepper, and ⅛ tsp crushed red pepper. Sauté over medium until the mushrooms have released all of their moisture and it has evaporated out of the skillet. Set the mushrooms aside.

Thawed and squeezed mushrooms

Thaw ½ lb. of frozen chopped spinach. Squeeze as much water out of the spinach as possible. You should have about one loosely packed cup of dried spinach.

quesadilla filling ingredients in a bowl

Add the spinach, mushrooms, 8 oz. shredded mozzarella, ¼ cup sour cream, and an additional ⅛ tsp salt and pepper to a bowl.

Mixed quesadilla filling in the bowl

Stir the ingredients together until well combined.

filling added to a tortilla

Add about ½ cup of the spinach mushroom mixture to each tortilla, spreading it out over one side, then folding it closed.

Toasted quesadillas in a skillet

Toast the quesadillas in a skillet over medium heat until they are golden brown and crispy on the outsides and melty on the insides. I don’t use any butter or oil in the skillet, but you can if you prefer a more fried texture to the tortilla.

spinach and mushroom quesadillas cut in half

Slice the quesadillas in half and serve!

A stack of spinach and mushroom quesadillas on a wooden cutting board

Try These Other Quesadilla Flavors

The post Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Creamy Spinach Soup

Ladle up this ultra Creamy Spinach Soup for a light lunch or dinner this week. This nutrient-rich and dairy-free spinach soup will tickle your taste buds and fuel your body. Super easy to make, this soup recipe requires just a few simple everyday ingre…

Ladle up this ultra Creamy Spinach Soup for a light lunch or dinner this week. This nutrient-rich and dairy-free spinach soup will tickle your taste buds and fuel your body. Super easy to make, this soup recipe requires just a few simple everyday ingredients you might have on hand already! This healthy soup is crazy...

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This article was written and published by Oh My Veggies. It may not be reproduce or republished without permission of the author. The original article can be found here: Creamy Spinach Soup.

Muffin Tin Egg Bites

Kickstart your morning with these Muffin Tin Egg Bites. These delicious and protein-packed egg bites will fuel your body and leave you feeling full. Whip up these zucchini and spinach egg bites ahead of time, and store them in the fridge for a grab-and…

Kickstart your morning with these Muffin Tin Egg Bites. These delicious and protein-packed egg bites will fuel your body and leave you feeling full. Whip up these zucchini and spinach egg bites ahead of time, and store them in the fridge for a grab-and-go breakfast.  You can toss these egg bites in the freezer for...

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This article was written and published by Oh My Veggies. It may not be reproduce or republished without permission of the author. The original article can be found here: Muffin Tin Egg Bites.

spanakopita

I finally conquered my fear of making spanakopita, the Greek savory spinach and feta pie, and yes, this means I’m going to tell you all about it. It took me so long because, however pathetically, I find filo/phyllo, the thin dough used t…

I finally conquered my fear of making spanakopita, the Greek savory spinach and feta pie, and yes, this means I’m going to tell you all about it. It took me so long because, however pathetically, I find filo/phyllo, the thin dough used to produce the flaky layers in many Middle Eastern and Balkan pastries, stressful: the tissue-like sheets can dry into crumbles in what feels like seconds. Having to brush each layer with butter or oil before using it is challenging in a small kitchen, and a lot of work in any size. Over the years, I’ve auditioned many spanakopitaish pies that allowed me to hedge a bit on the phyllo — triangles (only one sheet at a time made it less scary), spirals (ditto with one sheet; this recipe is in Smitten Kitchen Every Day), galettes (using a pie-like dough), and even “skillets” where I just messily crumbled some phyllo on top. All were good. None were this. This is exact spanakopita I crave, more doable than I thought possible.

spanakopita-15

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