Archive for January, 2016
Authentic Italian Marinara Sauce

How to Make Authentic Italian Marinara

Forget everything you know about spaghetti sauce. That canned stuff you’ve been buying in the store? It’s not even close to authentic. The real stuff—the stuff your Italian grandmother really wants you to have is surprisingly easy to make and tastes incredible.

Traditionally known in Italy as “gravy” this basic recipe make enough to make and freeze, having it on hand and use over pasta, on pizza, or to make lasagna. It’s so versatile! You’re going to love having it in your freezer!

  • To freeze:  Make a batch, allow to cool to room temperature. Transfer 1-2 cups into freezer-safe bags, seal tightly. Stack flat in freezer. Use within 3 months.
    How to Make Authentic Italian Marinara

Authentic Italian Marinara Sauce

  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 240
  • Total Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 30


  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • ½ large white onion, finely chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup dried oregano
  • 5 bay leaves
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 5 (28-ounce) cans crushed tomatoes


In a very large pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 4 minutes. Add garlic, salt, pepper, oregano, and bay leaves. Cook another minute or so, until the spices become fragrant. Add balsamic vinegar to the pot. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly, until the vinegar is reduced in half. Add tomatoes one can at a time. Cover and simmer for 4 hours, or transfer to a slow cooker and cook on love for 4-6 hours. To freeze: Allow marinara to cool completely before transferring to freezer bags. Properly concealed in an airtight bag, this recipe will last in the freezer for up to 6 months.

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Here's an authentic Italian Marinara, just like the "gravy" your Italian Grandmother Used to Make!

Giant Ginger Shortbread House

How to Make a Giant Ginger Shortbread House

Decorating gingerbread houses is a sweet holiday tradition for many families. But if you’ve ever tried to make them from scratch, or stood over a pile of cookie pieces, trying to coax them into standing up with a sticky bag of royal icing, you’ll know what we mean when we say gingerbread housing can be a real pain.

Well, it’s time to toss those graham crackers! And forget grandma’s finicky homemade gingerbread recipe. You know the one we’re talking about–that so-thick-it’s-impossible-to stir, requires-hours-of-chilling-time, spreads-out-when-it’s-cooking-so-you-can’t-even-cut-out-a-decent-gingerbread-house-anyway dough–and whip up a quick batch of our easy Ginger Shortbread, instead.

Made with dark brown sugar and easy-to-find spices, you’ll enjoy all of that soft, butter gingerbread cookie flavor, without any of the muss or fuss.

How to Make a Giant Ginger Shortbread House

Press it all into our Sweet Creations Giant Gingerbread Mold to create a ready-to-decorate gingerbread house in no time at all.

You’ll have a gorgeous looking treat that kids and grown-ups alike will love to personalize.

How to Make a Giant Ginger Shortbread House

Perhaps the best part of these giant ginger shortbread houses is you don’t have to rely on royal icing for the decor. Tint several  batches of Our Favorite Vanilla Buttercream and decorate with our Sweet Creations 12-Piece Decorating Kit, which comes with 8 disposable icing bags, so you can make all sorts of gorgeous colors for piping.

Grab the recipe below, and when you’re finished decorating these delicious Ginger Shortbread Houses, shoot a picture and upload it to Instagram with the hashtag #sweetcreations. We’d love to see how these cute cookie houses worked for you!

How to Make a Giant Ginger Shortbread House



Ginger Shortbread

Quick and simple shortbread made with brown sugar and aromatic spices. A delicious holiday cookie!

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 8


  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 1/3 cups flour
  • 1 Tbsp ginger
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1Tbsp vanilla
  • nonstick baking spray


In a large bowl or stand mixer, combine eggs, butter, dark brown sugar, flour, ginger, cinnamon and vanilla together until smooth. Press into a well-greased Sweet Creations Giant Gingerbread Mold. Bake at 375°F for 21-27 minutes, or until the center of the cookie is set and the edges turn golden brown. Remove and cool slightly before inverting on a cooling sheet. Cool completely before frosting.


  • Serving Size: 2

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Giant Ginger Shortbread House


Apple Brie Proscuitto Grilled Cheese

Apple Brie & Prosciutto Grilled Cheese

Grilled cheese is already a good thing. But swap out the cheddar, add slices of brie, sweet caramelized onions and salty sliced of prosciutto, and suddenly you’ve got a sandwich that is downright gourmet. Give this recipe a try on a lazy Saturday afternoon, or treat guests to a simple dinner by serving these sandwiches paired with a side of homemade soup.

Grilled Cheese Collage

Though grilled cheese is already a fairly quick cooking affair, there are a few shortcuts that will shorten your time in the kitchen. Slice the onions with a mandoline slicer, cut the apple with a handheld wedger. And get perfect pieces of brie with a good-quality cheese slicer.

Once all of ingredients are ready, pile them between two slices of sourdough and griddle until golden brown. We’ve offered some approximate values for you in the recipe card below. But the truth is, this dish is open to freestyle interpretation.

If you love onions, pile them on! If you don’t like brie, feel free to swap it out for another mild cheese of choice. (Port makes an excellent option). And, if fresh basil makes you smile, don’t add it to the sandwich until right before serving. Adding it at the last minute will keep it bright green and beautiful.

Mostly, enjoy! This delicious sandwich is full of all the best flavor combos–salty, sweet, tangy and buttery bread. We think you’ll love it!

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Apple, Brie and Prosciutto Grilled Cheese

Go gourmet with your grilled cheese! Brie, prosciutto, caramelized onions and basil make an incredible combo in this simple sandwich.

  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 5
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 2


  • 1/4 sweet onion, finely sliced
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 6 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 4 slices sourdough bread
  • 1/2 green or red apple, sliced thin
  • 3 oz brie, sliced thin
  • 4 slices prosciutto
  • 6 large fresh basil leaves


In a large skillet, heat onion slices, honey and 2 Tbsp butter together over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until onions are soft and light golden. Remove from heat. Butter one side of each slice of sourdough. On two of the non-buttered sides, layer apples, brie, prosciutto, basil and caramelized onions. Top with second slide of bread (buttered side out). Cook on a Good Cook grill pan until both sides are golden and the cheese is melted. Enjoy immediately!


  • Serving Size: 2

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Apple Brie & Prosciutto Grilled Cheese with Basil. So much deliciousness.

No-Knead Overnight Bread + 5 Gourmet Variations

bread header

Love homemade bread, but hate making bread at home? After all, homemade bread making makes a mess. There’s all that kneading, proofing, rising, and waiting…right?! Not with our easy, no-knead overnight basic bread recipe.

This recipe is incredible. No kneading needed. You just stir it together at the start of the week, then cover it and keep it in your fridge. You can have hot, fresh homemade loaves of bread coming out of the oven all week long.

Better yet, this bread is so easy to make gourmet. Here’s how to make it…and how you can turn a plain loaf into something spectacular…right in your very own kitchen.

No-Knead Overnight Bread

Most bread recipes feel overwhelming because they call for specific steps which can feel overwhelming. Not this recipe! Just grab a large mixing bowl, whisk the yeast into water, then dump flour and salt in.

The Easiest Bread You've Ever Made

You can “stir” with your hands, but you don’t need to knead the dough. Just make sure the flour is mixed in. Then, cover lightly with plastic wrap and pop it in your fridge overnight. It’s seriously that easy.

No Knead BreadIn the morning, you can pull out as much dough as you need and get it prepped for baking. The real secret to getting a good loaf it to fold the dough like a little bowl in your hands, then gently roll the edges of the dough under several times to create some soft layers in your bread.

Place your prepped loaf of dough—or boule—on a parchment lined baking sheet, and let it rise for about an hour. Once it’s risen, use a sharp knife to slice the top of the dough, sprinkle it with a bit of flour to give it a gorgeous, professional look, then bake yourself some bread. You deserve it.

No-Knead Bread and 5 Ways to Turn it Into a Gourmet Loaf


Overnight Artisan Bread

Mix it once (no kneading needed!) and have rustic, European-style bread ready to bake all week long! This deliciously simple recipes takes just a matter of minutes to make, and can be turned into several loaves of bread, or fresh hot homemade dinner rolls anytime you desire, because it can be stored in the fridge for up to 14-days! Simply make one batch, then bake the dough into fresh loaves whenever you’re ready! Fresh bread all week long!

  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 50 minutes


  • 3 ½ cups warm water
  • 2 packets yeast
  • 1 ½ tablespoons coarse sea salt
  • 7 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


In a very large bowl, stir together warm water and yeast. Allow to rise and bubble for 2 minutes, then whisk in sea salt and begin adding flour 1 cup at a time, stirring with a wooden spoon to incorporate. Though you don’t need to knead this bread, you can use your hands to incorporate all the flour if it becomes to difficult to use a spoon. Transfer dough to a large container. Drizzle with olive oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Store in fridge overnight (or up to 1 week). When ready to bake: Sprinkle your work surface with flour. Remove any amount of dough you desire (you can make a full loaf or four small dinner rolls! You decide!) from the fridge, and form an upside down bowl shape, curling the edges of the bread under itself several times. Transfer dough to an oil-drizzled dutch oven or baking pan. Allow to sit for 40-60 minutes. Preheat oven to 450 degrees for 20 minutes. Just before baking, sprinkle the loaf with flour, then use a very sharp knife to slash four slashes on top of the loaf. Place loaf in heating oven, then quickly slide a broiler pan with 1 cup of water into the bottom rack of your oven. Quickly close the oven. The water will create steam, which bakes deep, beautiful pockets of texture into your final loaf. Bake for 30 minutes, or until deep golden brown. Serve and enjoy! Use the refrigerated dough within 14 days for best results. The longer the dough sits in the fridge, the better it gets!


  • Serving Size: 2

Your dough can be used all week…it gets better as it ages in the fridge, rising into rich, chewy loaves that taste similar to sourdough bread. Just rise it and bake it, or turn a basic loaf into one of these delicious gourmet flavors.


On baking day, gently knead ½ cup dried cranberries and ½ cup chopped walnuts into your bread dough. Allow dough to rise 1- ½ hours before baking according to recipe directions.


On baking day, pull bread from the fridge and allow to rise. Just before baking, slather the top of your loaf with ¼ cup melted butter, and a mixture of ¼ cup sugar + 1 tablespoon cinnamon. Slice loaf, bake according to regular loaf instructions, covering the top of the bread lightly with tin foil, if needed, to keep the cinnamon mixture from over cooking.


Bake bread according to regular instructions. Using a very sharp, serrated knife, slice cooked loaf into very thin slices which don’t quite cut through bottom of the loaf. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon shredded cheddar inside each the slices, drizzle with ½ cup melted butter and 3 cloves fresh chopped garlic. Wrap the loaf lightly in tin foil and place in an oven preheated to 400 degrees just until the cheese is melted, about 15 minutes. Serve immediately and enjoy!


On baking day, pull as much bread dough as desired from the fridge and slice into long, thin pieces of dough. Twirl the pieces of dough into breadstick spirals, placing them on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Drizzle each breadstick with 1 tablespoon melted butter, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon grated parmesan. Bake in an oven preheated to 450 degrees just until golden brown, about 10-15 minutes. Remove and brush with more melted butter, sprinkle with grated parmesan and fresh chopped parsley. Serve immediately!


On baking day, pull as much bread dough as desired from the fridge. Gently knead 1 teaspoon (and up to 1 tablespoon) dried rosemary into the dough. Allow dough to rise 1- 1 ½ hours before baking according to recipe directions.

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How to Make No-Knead Overnight Bread. So easy!


Honey Sriracha Chicken Bacon Skewers

Skewers Honey

Grab a pack of skewers! We’ve got a fun new way to shake up the shishkabob, and it’s about to change the way you think about summertime grilling. 

Rather than spending hours painstakingly threading meats and veggies onto a wooden stick, our new Skewer Maker turns the task into a simple 2 step process. Simply slide your shishkabob ingredients in place, then press the skewer through. All of those slippery pieces will stay in place and you’ll have gorgeous, ready-to-grill skewers in minutes. To be launched this summer, subscribe to the Good Cook newsletter (in the upper right hand corner of this page) and we’ll let you know when it’s available!

Honey Sriracha Skewers

Whether you’re ready to get your grillin’ on outdoors, or are cooking on a cast iron grill pan inside, our simple Bacon and Chicken Skewers make a splendid combo, the bacon keeps the chicken extra-tender as it cooks for unbelievable flavor. With just five basic ingredients, you can prep them ahead of time, then toss them on the barbie when it’s time to eat. c

Topped with a spicy Sriracha Honey BBQ Sauce, these kabobs are awesome for everything from Game Day parties to lazy summer soirees. Grab the recipe below and give it a try. We think you’re going to love this one!

BBQ’ed a Batch?

We’d love to see a snapshot of your Sriracha Skewers! Upload a photo to Instagram and include the hashtag #lovegoodcook. Can’t wait to see all the good cookin’ coming out of your kitchen. 

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BBQ Chicken and Bacon Skewers

Quick and simple, these delicious skewers are ideal for grilling outdoors. Or cook them in a cast-iron grilling pan for authentic BBQ flavor made right inside your kitchen.

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4


  • 1 (1.5 lb) pack chicken tenders, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 8 pieces bacon, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1/4 cup BBQ sauce
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup Sriracha
  • 1 Tbsp cilantro, chopped (optional)


Thread chicken and bacon on skewers, with a piece of bacon between every piece of chicken. In a large bowl, stir together BBQ sauce, honey and Sriracha. Drizzle half of the BBQ mixture over the skewers. Grill skewers over medium or medium-high heat, basting with sauce until chicken is cooked through, about 12-17 minutes. Garnish with chopped cilantro, if desired. Enjoy!


  • Serving Size: 4

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Honey BBQ Chicken Bacon Skewers. The best food ever!

3-Ingredient Easy Kouign Amann Pastries

How to Make a 3-Ingredient Kouign Amann

Legend has it that the Kouign Amann (pronounced “Queen Aman”) is only made in 6 bakeries in the United States. Hot out of the oven, these pastries create an almost custard-like center, with a crème-brulee like top of caramelized sugar and butter.

Though these pastries are traditionally finicky—and can cost up to $5 per serving—our recipe offers up the ultimate hack. Three ingredients and less than 30 minutes, and you’ll have 9 perfectly flaky morsels, which taste incredible with a cup of hot coffee.

Tried This Recipe at Home?

We’d love to see a snapshot of your homebaked Kouign Amann. Upload a photo to Instagram and include the hashtag #lovegoodcook. Or pop by Facebook and tell us how the recipe worked for you. We can’t wait to see what you’ve cooked up!

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3-Ingredient Easy Kouign Amann Pastries

Traditionally Kouign Amann takes hours to make, but a few kitchen tricks will have you enjoying the dramatic flakey layers of this buttery, carmelized pastry in less then an hour.

  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 9


  • 1 package puffed pastry
  • 18 tablespoons Challenge Butter, salted
  • 1 cup turbinado sugar


Remove both sheets of puffed pastry from the box, allowing them to thaw at room temperature for 1 hour before making your pastries. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a Good Cook muffin tin with nonstick baking spray. Lay thawed puffed pastries flat on a clean workspace. Spread 6 tablespoons of melted butter on top of one of the sheets of pastry dough. Immediately coat butter with 1/3 cup of sugar. Lay the second piece of puffed pastry on top of the layer of sugar. Spread 6 tablespoons of melted butter on top of the second sheet of pastry dough. Top with 1/3 cup sugar. With a very sharp knife, slice pastry sheet into 9 squares. Fold the edges of each square into the center of each square, then drop each folded pastry into the prepared muffin tins. Drizzle ¾ tablespoons of melted butter on top of each pastry. Sprinkle generously with sugar. Three of the muffin cups will remain unfilled with pastry. Pour a small amount of water into the empty muffin tins to keep the empty muffin tins from burning. Bake in preheated oven for 14-18 minutes, or until the pastries are deep golden brown around the edges. Remove from oven, and immediately turn pastries out of the muffin tin to keep them from sticking. Cool slightly before serving.

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How to Hack the "Hardest Pastry in the World"

5-Ingredient Spicy Southern Cod and Cornbread Meal

5-Ingredient Dinner: Spicy Southern Cod and 2-Ingredient Sweet Cornbread Muffins

When it comes to dinner, it’s easy to feel uninspired. Hit the grocery store after work and you may even feel downright exhausted. If you’ve ever stood in the middle of an aisle at 5 o’clock, surrounded by food choices and totally incapable of thinking up a single recipe, we hear you. We’ve totally been there. 

Next time you’re wondering what to cook, here’s a 5-ingredient fix–an entire meal that can be make with just 5 simple ingredients. So easy, this awesome meal is one for the recipe box! Here’s how it all comes together. 

2-Ingredient Cornbread Muffins

Prep Step One will get a delicious batch of these 2-Ingredient Sweet Cornbread muffins a’bakin’! Stirring them together is literally this simple:

  • Pour two boxes of Jiffy Cornbread Mix in a bowl
  • Stir in 1 (15 oz) can of Creamed Corn
  • Mix until smooth

That’s it! Use an ice cream scoop to transfer your batter into a Texas Muffin Tin (or prep teeny tiny muffins so they’ll bake faster) and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown and set in the center. (Mini muffins will need just 9-12 minutes to bake).

3-Ingredient Spicy Cod 

While your muffins are cooking, melt 2 tablespoons of coconut oil in a large nonstick skillet or fry pan and sprinkle 6 cod filets generously with Old Bay Seasoning. Fry fish on both sides over medium-high heat until cooked through. You’ll know they’re ready to remove from the skillet when they’re a deep golden brown and the fish begins to flake.

5-Ingredient Spicy Cod & Cornbread Dinner

And just like that, dinner is done! If desired, garnish with parsley and a lemon slice. Then grab some butter and honey for your muffins and dive into this delish dish.

Isn’t it funny to think that 5 minutes and 5 ingredients ago, you were feeling uninspired? Now you’ve got a great idea that makes a perfect meal any night of the week. Enjoy!

Spicy Cod 2



5-Ingredient Southern Fish Fry Dinner

Spicy Cod and sweet cornbread. What could better a better combo than that? This simple, budget-friendly dinner calls for just 5 ingredients…and is absolutely delicious!

  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6


  • 2 (8.5 oz) boxes Jiffy Cornbread Mix
  • 1 (15 oz) box creamed corn
  • 6 cod filets
  • 1/4 cup Old Bay seasoning
  • 2-3 tablespoons coconut oil


FOR THE CORNBREAD: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, stir together cornbread mixes and creamed corn until well combined. Spoon into a Texas Muffin pan which has been generously sprayed with nonstick spray. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the centers spring back when touched lightly. FOR THE SPICY COD: Melt coconut oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Generously sprinkle cod filets on both sides with Old Bay Seasoning. Fry in coconut oil, flipping fish to cook on both sides. Cook until fish is golden brown and flakes easily with a fork.


  • Serving Size: 6

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5 Ingredient Southern Fish Fry! 3-Ingredient Spicy Cod and 2-Ingredient Cornbread Muffins

Chocolate-Stuffed Strawberries and a 3-Ingredient Chocolate Smoothie

Simple Valentines Day Snackable: Chocolate Stuffed Strawberries

Here’s a fun and simple idea guaranteed to make snacktime sweeter than ever: Chocolate-Stuffed Strawberries! This quick-prep snack is perfect for packing in a Valentines day lunch (or any lunch for that matter!) and makes a perfect match with our soon-to-be-released Sip ‘N Snack Container. When paired with a chocolate smoothie, this chocolatey combo is absolutely divine!

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How to Make Chocolate-Stuffed Strawberries

Making these adorable strawberries is incredibly easy! Three basic ingredients are all you need: strawberries, chocolate chips and coconut oil. For extra easy prep, you’ll also need a disposable icing bag.

  1. Prep the berries: Clean 1 pint strawberries. Remove the greens and gently core each berry with a Profreshionals strawberry huller. Gently dry the center of each berry with a clean paper towel.
  2. Prep the chocolate: Melt 1/2 cup dark, milk or white chocolate chips and 2 teaspoons coconut oil together in a microwave-safe bowl until smooth. Transfer melted chocolate to an icing bag. 
  3. Pipe & chill.  Snip the tip of your icing bag with sharp scissors. Working quickly, pipe the chocolate into the center of each berry. Keep filled berries upright by setting them in a plastic ice cube tray. Refrigerate until chocolate is firm. Enjoy within 4-6 hours for freshest flavor.

With a batch of pretty berries prepped, all you need now is a chocolatey 3-ingredient smoothie to wash down your sweet snackables. We’ve got that covered, too. Simply print the recipe below, it’s all ready to go. 

Now you just have to decide who the lucky person is that you’ll share this fun treat with!

Tried This Idea?

We’d love to see a snapshot of your chocolate-stuffed strawberries. Upload a photo to Instagram and include the hashtag #lovegoodcook. Can’t wait to see all the sweet creations coming out of your kitchen!

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3-Ingredient Chocolate Smoothie

A simple, naturally sweet chocolate smoothie that tastes like a Frosty!

  • Prep Time: 5
  • Total Time: 5
  • Yield: 1


  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup chocolate milk or almond milk


Blend all ingredients in a smoothie until combined.


  • Serving Size: 1
Zoodle Caprese

  Quick and Easy Zoodle Caprese 

“Zoodle” or zucchini noodle recipes are all the rage right now. Popularized by the paleo and gluten-free movements, we’re seeing more and more of these veggie-based noodle recipes pop up all over the web. Most of them call for a spiralizer–a special tool designed to swirl veggies like zucchini into “zoodles”. But you don’t actually need a special tool to create veggie noodles. A handheld julienne peeler works just as well, costs less than $10 and fits nicely in your kitchen drawers. No special storage required.  

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Once you’ve whipped up a batch of zucchini noodles by peeling them with a julienne slicer, there are dozens of delicious ways to enjoy them. But this simple recipe is one of our favorites. Tossed together with all of the classic caprese flavors, this simple Zoodle Caprese takes just minutes to make and makes a beautiful no-bake, plant-based side dish. It’s also filling enough to enjoy for lunch or dinner. 

2016-01 JANUARY Zoodle Caprese 3aSm

Quick, simple and delicious. That’s the Good Cook way. We’d love to have you try this recipe at home, snap a photo and share it to Instagram. Don’t forget the hashtag #lovegoodcook!

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Zoodle Caprese

Quick, light and simple, zucchini is turned into “noodles” with this delicious recipe, then tossed with all the classic caprese ingredients for a refreshing dish that makes a perfect side or light main.

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Total Time: 10
  • Yield: 4


  • 3 small zucchini, tops removed
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup mini mozzarella balls
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons white vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped basil, lightly packed
  • salt and pepper to taste


Peel zucchini with a julienne slicer to create zucchini noodles. Toss “zoodles” with remaining ingredients, just until combined. Serve immediately and enjoy!

How To Fix 5 Basic Baking Mistakes

5 Common Baking Mistakes

Whether you’re a novice baker or can hold your own in the kitchen, it’s a given that you’ve baked a fallen cake, burnt your cookies, or made rubbery muffins at one time or another. You’re not alone, and most of us keep making those same mistakes over and over again. There are a few kitchen tips and tricks that’ll fix your flops forever and give you the consistent results you yearn for. We’ve found 5 ways to fix basic baking mistakes to get you baking like a seasoned pro in no time!

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1. Baking With Cold Eggs and Dairy Products

If your cakes and bread resemble dense bricks, we’ve got an easy fix for that. Take your eggs, butter, and milk out of the fridge anywhere from 30 minutes to 1 hour before you plan to bake, and you’ll have light and airy baked goods.

What’s happening? Room temperature eggs, milk, and butter bond to form an emulsion that traps air. This trapped air expands during baking, acting as a leavening agent to produce light and airy baked goods. If your ingredients are cold, they won’t incorporate as evenly to create a bond. You’ll want cold butter for pie crusts and pastry, so take note of this exception.

Forget to take your eggs out early?   You can place cold eggs in a bowl of warm water for about 15 minutes. Water that’s too hot will cook the whites, so beware! If you need soft butter STAT, just cut it into 1 inch pieces and microwave for 10 second intervals, until it’s malleable, unless the recipe calls for melted butter.

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2. Measuring Dry Ingredients in a Liquid Measuring Cup

If you routinely have dry and tough cakes and muffins, using a liquid measuring cup for dry ingredients may be the culprit. When using a liquid measuring cup for flour, you can’t level the top, and thus need to jiggle the cup to get it level. This jiggling and shaking compacts the flour, and you’ll be fooled into adding more flour than is actually called for.

What to do? Purchase dry measuring cups with flat rims that are designed for ingredients like flour and cocoa powder. The correct method for dry ingredients is to spoon the ingredients into the dry measuring cup, piling ingredients above the flat rim. Drag the side of a knife across the flat rim to level the dry ingredients. If you scoop the cup into a bin of flour, you’ll compact it, ultimately resulting in dry baked goods.

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3. Overmixing Doughs and Batters

If you’ve ever baked a rubbery cake or muffins, you know how unpleasant it is to take a bite. It may be tempting to beat your batter into oblivion, especially if you see lumps. But really what’s happening is that the overmixing of flour activates the gluten. Gluten is a protein that gives baked goods firm and elastic structure, but overdoing it can mean a chewy pastry, and that’s no good.

How do you get tender cakes and muffins, and flaky piecrusts? Use the lowest speed possible for mixers or hand mix when adding flour to the batter. A few lumps in the batter are par for the course! It’s also okay for piecrust to have streaks of butter visible. Best advice? Make sure not to keep your mixer on for too long, and being gentle is a good thing!

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4. Opening the Oven Door Too Often

If you have a habit of opening the oven door to peek at your baked goods, you may want to curb your habit and use the oven light. Wait until your cake, cookies, or muffins have set before reaching for the oven door. Opening the door releases hot air, and you’d be surprised to know that this is enough to change the oven temperature significantly, resulting in unevenly baked goods.

What to do? Set a digital precision timer. You can set it for a few minutes before the minimum time recommended on the recipe. Use the oven light if you must, or shine a flashlight through the glass window for a better look. It takes about 20 minutes for a cake to set, so do what you must to stop peeking!

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5. Your Cookies Have Burnt Edges

If you’re frustrated that your cookies burn at the edges, there are some changes you can make so this won’t happen again. What type of baking sheet are you using? If it’s dark and non-shiny, it may be absorbing excessive heat, causing burnt cookies. Make sure to purchase a few cookie sheets that are heavy in weight, with channelled surfaces for airflow and even baking, like the Good Cook AirPerfect line of baking pans.

Browned cookies? If you’re noticing that each successive batch of cookies is browner than the last, it’s because you’re not letting the cookie sheet cool down between each batch. Using more than one baking sheet is ideal, so while one is in the oven, the other is cooling down and ready for the next batch. By placing cookie dough on a warmed baking sheet, you’re already starting the cooking process before you even get them in the oven.

What Baking Mistakes Are Getting You Down?

We’d love to have our experts answer your kitchen questions! Leave us a comment below and let us know what baking mistakes are happening at your house. Then stay tuned! We might just answer your question in an upcoming installment.


Chopped Strawberry Chicken Salad

Chicken Strawberry Chop Salad

When it comes time to tote something to a party, do you always find yourself frantically searching the internet for something delicious to share? Look no further! Because this crowd-pleasing Chopped Strawberry Avocado Chicken Salad with Sweet Hot Bacon Dressing is the answer to every party ever.

Prep and chop all of the ingredients ahead of time, then toss them together for an instantly delicious dish that everyone will love. Perfect for parties, brunches, picnics and potlucks, put this recipe on your fridge. Because you’re going to want to make it alllll the time!

This delicious salad is perfect as is. But if you’re looking for some flavor upgrades, try tossing in blackberries or blueberries, instead. Orange slices also complement the combo, as do pecans (instead of almonds).

Chicken Avocado Strawberry Chop Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing

Tried This Recipe?

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Chicken Strawberry Avocado Chop Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing


Chicken Avocado Strawberry Chop Salad with Sweet Bacon Dressing

Ideal for brunches and casual parties, this crowd-pleasing salad will have everyone asking for more! Chop all ingredients ahead for quick prep and serving.

  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 8


  • 2 heads romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 2 grilled chicken breasts, chopped
  • 1 pint strawberries, hulled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup sweet onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup or honey
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup bacon bits
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 2 avocados, pitted, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola or bleu cheese


FOR THE DRESSING: In a large skillet over medium-high, cook the chopped onions in 1 tablespoon of oil until softened (about 2-3 minutes). Whisk in remaining olive oil, vinegar, maple syrup, water and cornstarch. Bring to a boil. Once thickened, remove from heat, toss in bacon bits, salt and pepper FOR THE CANDIED ALMONDS: Place all ingredients in a nonstick skillet. Heat over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar begins to melt and bubble. Cook until the sugar and almonds turn a light golden brown (about 45-60 seconds) then transfer to parchment paper and allow to cool. FOR THE SALAD: Toss all ingredients together. Drizzle with warm bacon dressing and garnish with candied almonds. Enjoy immediately!


  • Serving Size: 8
Three 4-Ingredient Mason Jar Lunches You Can Make In Minutes

3 Super Simple Mason Jar Quinoa Salads

Mason Jar Salads are one of the most popular online recipes, and for good reason. They may be the easiest make-ahead lunch ever. But knowing what, exactly, to put in your mason jar can be befuddling. Sure, just any salad ingredients will work but if you want a lunch you can look forward to, having a few tried-and-true combos is a must.

With the New Year here, we thought it would be fun to put together some super simple, 4-ingredient mason jar quinoa salads. 100% vegetarian, high in protein, full of real whole foods. Ideas that can be prepped in under 5 minutes. We ended up with 3 simple salad recipes that you will absolutely love. Here’s how to make them.

These 3 mason jar quinoa salads are so simple, they don’t need a recipe. (However, if you’d like to print off a version of our works-everytime formula, we’ve provided one below). Just layer dressing, quinoa, veggies and toppings together to create a scrumptious salad. Here are 3 of our favorite 4-ingredient combos:

      • CREAMY SOUTHWESTERN | Green Goddess Dressing + Quinoa + Corn & Black Bean Salsa + Corn Chip Strips
      • MEDITERRANEAN CAPRESE | Caesar Dressing + Quinoa + Tomatoes + Basil & Spinach
      • ASIAN QUINOA CRUNCH | Sesame Dressing + Quinoa + Coleslaw + Sliced Almonds

4-Ingredient Mason Jar Quinoa Salads

Tried These Ideas at Home?

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4-Ingredient Mason Jar Quinoa Salads


4-Ingredient Mason Jar Formula

Enjoy more quinoa with this easy mason jar salad formula!

  • Prep Time: 5
  • Total Time: 5
  • Yield: 1


  • 2-3 Tbsp prepared dressing (Ranch, Italian, French, etc.)
  • 2/3 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped veggies or protein (chicken, beans, etc)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup crunchy toppings (sliced almonds, tortilla strips, chopped herbs, etc)


Place dressing in the bottom of a pint-sized mason jar

Spicy Poke Tuna Salad Stackers

How to Make Poke Tuna Salad Stacks

We’re HUGE fans of poke tuna around here. Pronounce “poh-kee”, this spicy Hawaiian tuna tartare is a delicacy in the islands, and often served in high-end restaurants. But did you know it’s also incredibly easy to make at home? With a few basic ingredients and a clever styling hack using our Good Cook Touch Measuring Cups, making chef-style Spicy Poke Tuna Salad Stackers has never been so easy!

This recipe makes a deliciously simple, superquick no bake dinner recipe. But it’s also ideal as a cocktail party appetizer, as well. To serve, simply prep in smaller Good Cook Touch Measuring Cups. A 1/3 cup or 1/4 cup serving size is ideal as a starter. For best results, chop your tuna and avocado a little smaller than usual to create beautiful smaller stacks.

Poke Tuna Salad Stacks

Tried This Recipe?

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Simple Poke Tuna Salad Stackers


Spicy Tuna Salad Stacks

Quick and delicious, these sushi-inspired tuna stacks are a fresh way to enjoy salad for dinner! When making raw fish recipes, always ask your local butcher for sushi-grade tuna, keep refrigerated and make

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Total Time: 10
  • Yield: 2


  • 1 large sushi-grade ahi tuna steak, finely diced
  • 1/2 sweet onions, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp sesame oil
  • juice and zest of 1 lime
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 3/4 cup brown rice or sticky rice
  • nonstick coconut oil spray
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds or rice flavoring
  • 1 scallion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, halved


In a large bowl, stir together tuna steak, onions, ginger, red pepper flakes, soy sauce, sesame oil and zest of 1 lime. In a small bowl, stir together avocado and lime juice. Generously coat a Good Cook 3/4 cup measuring cup with nonstick spray. Press ahi mixture into the bottom half of the cup, add a layer of avocado, then fill the rest of the cup with rice, pressing down firmly with a spoon to compact the mixture. Quickly turn mixture out onto serving plate. Repeat with remaining tuna, avocado and rice. Garnish salad stacks with a sprinkling of sesame seeds (or rice topping), green onions and tomatoes. Serve immediately and enjoy.


  • Serving Size: 2
Confetti Sugar Cookie Bars

How to Make 5-Ingredient Sugar Cookie Bars
Forget about running to the bakery. When you need a sugar cookie, the last thing you want to do is drive to the store! All you really need is frosting, of course. Rich, creamy buttercream. And a vanilla-kissed sugar cookie recipe so easy, we’ve dubbed it the quickest bar on the block.

Just 5-ingredients is all you need to whip our buttery sugar cookies, press ’em into bar form, then bake until golden. Top with our easy buttercream (recipe below) or spread your favorite family frosting on top, then sprinkle with every kind of sprinkle you’ve got in the house. The end result? A 9×13″ AirPerfect pan full of treats so colorful, all you need is a party hat!

Tried This Recipe?

If you made a batch of Confetti Bars in your kitchen, we’d love to see ’em! Upload a photo to Instagram (don’t forget the hashtag #lovegoodcook) and show off your sprinkle style. We can’t wait to see what you’ve cooked up!
How to Make Confetti Sugar Cookie Bars--with Just 5-Ingredients for the Base Recipe!!


5-Ingredient Sugar Cookie Bars

Our 5-Ingredient Sugar Cookie recipe makes the perfect base for these quick and easy Sugar Cookie Bars.

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 16


  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, softened but not melted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl or stand mixer, beat together egg, butter, and sugar until very well combined. Add flour and vanilla, mix until a thick dough forms. Press dough into the bottom of a Good Cook AirPerfect 9×13″ baking pan. Bake for 18-25 minutes, or just until the center of the dough is set and the edges begin to turn a light golden brown. Remove and cool completely. Frost with buttercream frosting (recipe in the Notes section below). Decorate with a variety of sprinkles.


  • Serving Size: 16
7 Things You Need To Cook in January

7 Things You Must Cook in January

It’s a chilly winter night, and you’ve got nothing on the stove. You hear whines of “I’m hungry” as you call for takeout yet again. With a little planning, this scenario won’t happen, and you’ll have a week’s worth of warm and delicious fall dinners at your ready. We’ve found 7 incredible recipes you need to cook this January that are easy, filling, and perfect for busy nights!


1. Creamy Beef Stroganoff

Hamburger helper recipe to the rescue! Turn your ground beef into dinner with this homemade creamy beef stroganoff. This version is cheap, quick, and easy, and you’ll have a homemade meal in one pot in less than 30 minutes! Find this simple recipe at DAMN DELICIOUS.


2. Butternut Squash & Black Bean Enchiladas

Eat comfort food the skinny way. These delicious butternut squash and black bean enchiladas are perfect for fall, and are packed full of healthy ingredients for guilt-free noshing! For extra convenience, prep this recipe ahead of time and store it until you’re ready to cook in our Good Cook Covered 9×13″ Casserole Pan. Learn how to make these yummy enchiladas at SKINNYTASTE.


3. Tuscan Chicken Stew

Soup makes a perfect fall dinner, and this easy slow cooker recipe simmers chicken, potatoes and rosemary with vegetables for a delicious and flavorful supper.  Serve this tasty slow cooker Tuscan chicken stew with crusty bread for dipping.  Get the recipe at SWEET PEAS AND SAFFRON.


4. Cheesy Broccoli Chicken & Rice Casserole

A cold day calls for one delicious dinner. This one pot cheesy broccoli chicken and rice casserole hits the spot. Prep it all in a bright red Good Cook 3-Quart Ceramic Dish then bake until warm and gooey. In no time at all, you’ll have an incredibly co,forting casserole to serve your hungry family. Head to JO COOKS for the recipe.


5. 30-Minute Minestrone

Two favorite comfort foods come together in this super easy, 30 minute one-pot meal. Serve this soup-like, cheesy, hearty dinner on a busy night to satisfy the whole family. Get the deets at DAMN DELICIOUS.


6. One-Sheet Family Chicken

Buy a pack of family chicken pieces and let the kids have the wings! It’s easy to roast up this yummy one sheet pan chicken dinner, and you’ll have succulent meat with crisp skin in a fraction of the time it takes to roast a whole chicken. Grab our extra-large AirPerfect Half Sheet Cake Pan for the perfect sized baking sheet, then learn how to make this fall recipe at SOME THE WISER.


7. Pumpkin Magic Custard Cake

Save room for dessert! It’s not too late in the season to bring on the pumpkin flavored goodies, and don’t forget to make this amazing pumpkin magic custard cake with salted caramel sauce. You won’t be disappointed! Find this totally tasty dessert recipe at GOODCOOK.