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Sides

Side Dishes are the glue that holds an amazing Dinner together! I’ve got you covered with the most delicious side dishes you can serve at your next holiday dinner, party or everyday dinner. Try: Asparagus Puff Pastry Bundles or Healthy Lime Cilantro Cauliflower Rice!

Arugula Beet Feta Salad with Candied Pecans

Bowl of salad with pecans beets and arugula

Beets are way underrated – if you have never cooked with this delicious and versatile superfood, today is the day to start.  Beneath that tough exterior and that gorgeous deep purple hue, beetroots are a very nutritious root vegetable. They are rich sources of potassium, iron, vitamin A, and vitamin C. It doesn’t get the credit it deserves! The latest addition to my salad recipes is this stunning beet salad with feta, arugula, and candied pecans. I would describe it as fresh, nutty, sweet, and salty. There’s also a balsamic vinaigrette that brings out all the best flavors of this...

Asparagus Puff Pastry Bundles

Bread with stuffed asparagus

So, here is my recipe for fresh asparagus with puff pastry, a lovely side dish for any dinner party.  I’ll be honest: it doesn’t look like much at first, and it’s definitely not as tantalizing as a colorful berry salad. But don’t be fooled, one bite into this asparagus with puff pastry and you’ll be amazed: glazed with honey, oozing with the best cheese mixture, and simply robust asparagus, this is definitely going to be one of the most memorable dishes you’ll ever have.  It is very similar to cheesy asparagus tarts, except this one has already been apportioned and is shaped...

Easy Mediterranean Pasta Salad

Pasta salad with cherry tomatoes

Growing up, I was surrounded by loads of Mediterranean food influences. I had a family full of amazing cooks and I was always served the best dishes from scratch, and now that I’m older, I realize that I was incredibly lucky to have had someone cook for me.  In Mediterranean cooking, we use a lot of flavorful plant-based foods like legumes, grains, and herbs. But, we also love our sauces and dressings.  People tend to think of Mediterranean food like Italian, but it actually is a melting pot of European, Middle Eastern, Asian, and African cuisines. This Mediterranean pasta salad...

Simple Shirazi Salad

I’m so excited to share another Persian recipe with you guys because whenever there’s food involved, it’s always a good idea to go back to your heritage, am I right?  With that said, I love trying new things and tasting food from different cuisines. What is your favorite dish from your culture or heritage? Let me know by commenting on this blog post – I’d love to know!  Shirazi salad or Salad-e Shirazi is a vibrant, colorful salad that is commonly served in any Iranian household, including my own. It is known for this really uniform look since everything is cut to about the same...

Garlic Butter Baked Shrimp

Garlic butter baked shrimp with garlic-lemon mayonnaise dip and slices of lemons

Does anyone else find themself frequenting the frozen dinners aisle at Costco a lot more than they should? That was 100% me before I began my cooking journey… There are just so many different things to try! Who can say no to an easy, no-frills, microwaveable meal every now and then?  My days of frozen dinners are behind me, but I recently thought about this garlic butter shrimp scampi I once had which actually tasted amazing. I decided to recreate it with my own spin on it. I present you: the best garlic butter shrimp you’ll ever have.  Instead of going the pasta route, this...

Healthy Strawberry Summer Salad

strawberry and spinach salad with red onion, avocado and basil leaves

Every summer, my husband and I host barbecue parties for our family and friends. Because I like having variation, that means needing to think of different sides and fixings for each party.  One of my must-haves is a salad – it’s healthy, refreshing and helps to balance the “heaviness” of all the grilled meats. But you’ll never see a boring salad at my party! I love serving steak salads (like this delicious steak salad with yogurt dressing), but when I need to fix something quick and easy, this strawberry summer salad is a great option. You really can’t go wrong with this salad. It’s...

Easy Homemade Pico De Gallo

close up of homemade pico de gallo served with chips

What’s a tangy, fresh dip that goes super well with chips? You guessed it – salsa!  No more buying bottled salsa, my friends. Today, I’m showing you exactly how to make authentic pico de gallo. It isn’t exactly salsa, though it is just one step shy. The only difference is that salsa is a puréed form of the same ingredients, whereas pico de gallo (or salsa fresca) keeps its vegetables in solid form.  In Mexican restaurants and fast food joints, pico de gallo is found in fish tacos and meat burritos, acting as a sweet and spicy relish. Plus, it’s the perfect dip for tortilla...

Healthy Lime Cilantro Cauliflower Rice

Cilantro lime cauliflower rice with slices of lemon

Let’s start by getting a clearer picture of cauliflower rice. Essentially, it’s cauliflower that is pulsed in a food processor and broken down into tiny bits until its size resembles cooked rice or couscous.  It doesn’t taste like rice one bit. Cauliflower rice retains its taste, but its granules turn light and fluffy. Making cauliflower rice can get technical, especially since we’re trying to replace a carb with a vegetable. But don’t worry, with my expert tips and tricks, you’ll be fully equipped to make the best cauliflower rice.  Is this cauliflower recipe healthy? Yes!...

Authentic Greek Tzatziki Sauce

Tzatziki mixture

Okay, before I proceed to rave about this Greek godsend, let’s say this together: Tzatziki is pronounced sat-see-kee.  Not tuh-za tuh-zi-kee, nope. Sat-see-kee. I had to learn that the hard way. Oh, if you could just see the waiters trying to stifle a smile for all the times I proudly requested “more of that delicious tuh-za tuh-zi-kee for my kabobs”.  It wasn’t until I was on the phone later that night, telling a friend how darn good it was, when she laughed, “You know it’s pronounced sat-see-kee, right?” LOL.  I never made that mistake again.  Anyway, if you’ve never...

Best Greek Salad Recipe

Greek salad made with tomatoes, onion, cucumber and pitted kalamata olives

Do you know the feeling of watching movies and wishing you were right there in the scene? Or is it just me?  I especially love movies that feature a group of old friends enjoying a long summer lunch in the backyard and sipping on a fruity watermelon cocktail. The backdrop is filled with orange trees and olive trees, and even though lunch is over, it’s nice to just lounge about and graze on cheese.  Whenever I’m making this Greek salad, I try to picture myself in a movie like that. I’ll have a nice, slow lunch and then take a dip in the pool when I'm done. Okay, snap out of it,...

Easy Caesar Salad Dressing

Caesar salads are one of those classic side dishes on the menu that’s hard to go wrong with. It’s got crisp romaine lettuce, crunchy croutons, and cheese. There are also added protein options, such as grilled chicken breasts, cajun shrimp, salami, and bacon.   The thing that makes a Caesar salad spectacular, I believe, is the dressing that ties it all together. It is rich with flavors from anchovies, garlic mayonnaise, cheese, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce, all blended together.  I decided to take a stab at making homemade Caesar salad dressing, and can you believe it...

Best Three Bean Salad

A bright and inviting bowl of three bean salad is one of the smartest (and quickest) dishes you can pack for a summer picnic, a camping trip, or an outdoor BBQ party.  The origins of the three bean salad are unclear. We know that this side dish became popular in the 50s because it was made of canned beans which everyone already had in their pantry. The cherry on top was a tangy, refreshing marinade that the beans soaked in.  By the 60s and 70s, companies came up with instant 3 bean salads in cans, which you can still find on shelves today. I think it’s way healthier to make your...

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Cassandra Morris

Meet Cassandra

Welcome Friends, to Cooking With Cassandra! Thank you for stopping by. Here you will find simple, delicious recipes that are tested and perfected, kitchen tips every home cook needs to know + lifestyle advice on changing your mindset on health from restriction and overwhelm to balance and enjoyment! My goal is to provide you with inspiration, whether it’s in your kitchen or in your life. Let’s get cooking!

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Cooking dinner doesn’t have to take all night. Get our newest recipes, exclusive content PLUS our 10 Quick and Easy Dinner Recipes to get you started!

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Cooking dinner doesn’t have to take all night. Get our newest recipes, exclusive content PLUS our 10 Quick and Easy Dinner Recipes to get you started!