THE TEST KITCHEN

Stop bringing potato salad to the potluck.

Potluck RecipeRoundup

I’m celebrating the Winter Solstice over here in New Zealand – mostly because the days will start to get longer and I’m SO looking forward to having guests over at our new flat!

But while Kiwis are heading indoors this time of year and huddling around the heat pump for warmth, I know my Canadian friends are getting ready to hit the beach and have some classic outdoor BBQs over the next couple of months.

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Sneak peek of our new outdoor space!

Whenever I get invited to a potluck, I always find myself panicking about what to make (I’m very Type A), and lately I’ve been thinking about making this list of my favourite potluck recipes – so that the next time a coworker/friend/family member wants to have a shared meal, I’ll be ready with something delicious and unique.

Side note: In 2015 I ate vegan for six months (non-political reasons – I was just interested in learning new recipes and trying different things!) and ironically was invited to a lot of potlucks during this time. My recipe selection reflects some of the great dishes I discovered back then.

You’ll also notice that a lot of the recipes come from only a handful of blogs: Paleomg, Budget Bytes and Oh She Glows. When I find a good recipe blog, I stick with it. These ladies have been my muse in the kitchen for many, many years. I’ve recently started following Lexis’ Clean Kitchen and she is well on her way to entering my personal Hall of Fame. 🙂

So no matter what time of year it is for you or whatever weird food regime you happen to be following right now, here’s a list of my favourite go-to potluck recipes that’ll be sure to satisfy you and any discerning guests. They are easy, delicious and tested by me personally – which should assure you that they are no-fail!

Appetizers

NachoDi[

  1. Roasted Sweet Potato Rounds with Goat Cheese (Keep it simple and forget about the “blood orange olive oil” – you don’t need it) (gluten-free)
  2. Homemade Hummus with veggies and crisps (*Here’s 4 ways – I recommend the roasted red pepper)
  3. Honey Sriracha Chicken Wings (make these with chicken wings instead of drumsticks)
  4. Life-affirming Warm Nacho Dip (vegan and gluten-free*)
  5. The Ultimate Cheese Plate (here’s an awesome infographic from Lexis’ Clean Kitchen – can be made gluten-free)

*Just a note on gluten-free – if you’re using any type of sauce or packaged ingredient you need to make sure it’s gluten-free. In no way am I responsible for your inability to read 🙂

Salads

Orzo

  1. Thai Peanut Empowered Noodles (the peanut sauce is truly addicting) (vegan)
  2. Apple Dijon Kale Salad (I like using grainy mustard and dried cranberries instead of raisins) (vegan)
  3. Spinach and Orzo Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette (try kalamata olives + feta cheese for a Greek twist!)
  4. Broccoli Salad with Honey Yogurt Dressing (don’t be afraid to add some BACON!)
  5. Greek Chicken Pasta Salad
  6. Creamy Beet Salad with Candied Walnuts (can be made gluten-free)

Mains/Casseroles

Chicken Caesar Salad Burgers
Apologies for the grainy photo – that’s what happens when it’s so good, you only take time for a quick post on an Instagram Story 🙂
  1. Almost 5-Ingredient Pizza Casserole (so simple and so good!) (gluten-free, dairy-free)
  2. Slow Cooker Chicken Tacos (serve with rice, corn chips or greens, with a side of sour cream and salsa) (gluten-free)
  3. Jalapeno-Popper Mac & Cheese (keep warm in a slow cooker)
  4. Mini Chicken Caesar Salad Burgers (here’s a recipe for a full-size version, I recommend making sliders for a potluck) (gluten-free, dairy-free)

Desserts

DESSERT
Move over, George Costanza – there’s a new hand model in town 😉
  1. “Skinny Mini” Oreo Cheesecakes (sprinkle more Oreos on top before baking to reverse the “skinny” factor…)
  2. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Dip (*definitely not “skinny”!) 
  3. Homemade Crispy Twix Bars (vegan, can be made gluten-free)
  4. Almond Brownies (I recommend the ‘vegan’ version of the two, but up to you!) (vegan, gluten-free)
  5. Gooey Pumpkin Spice Latte Pudding Cake (this isn’t very summery but it’s delicious and I would eat it any time of year if I could find canned pumpkin in New Zealand!) (vegan, gluten-free)
  6. Cookie Dough Freezer Fudge (gluten-free, can be made vegan)
  7. Chocolate Cayenne Crinkle Cookies (gluten-free)

Be sure to let me know if you try any of these – I’d love to know what you think 🙂

And please share any of your favourite recipes so that I can add to my collection!

 

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