everyday food made simple

 The Big Game is tomorrow – are you ready?!

For all your last-minute party planners that are in need of a last-minute appetizer ideas, I’ve got you covered today! Here are some of the most popular game day recipes here on SEF:

>> Buffalo ranch chicken cups

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>> Mini taco cups


>> Mini taco cups, 2.0

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>> Wonton wrapper wrapped mozzarella sticks

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>> Chipotle hot corn dip


>> Bacon cheeseburger quesadillas

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>> Tailgate turkey chili

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(can you tell which of these pictures were from a few years ago when I knew nothing about food photography?)

Plus I even have a new super quick and simple shrimp cocktail recipe for you to satisfy all your seafood-loving party guests.

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Instead of the traditional cocktail sauce, I made a soy-ginger sauce to go with them instead. Because you know, I can never seem to make anything “traditional”. That’s just how I roll, yo.

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This dish comes together easily within an hour and there’s really not a whole lot of prep work that goes into it – the most work you’ll have to do is mince some herbs and grate some garlic and ginger. Otherwise it’s just a lot of “throwing the ingredients in a bowl”, boiling, chilling, mixing, and more chilling. Not a lot of labor involved so you can spend more time watching the game and spending time with friends.

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Whether you’ll be rooting for the Seahawks or the Patriots tomorrow, or if you’re just going to parties just for the food – I hope everyone has a fabulous time spending the day with family and friends!

shrimp cocktail with soy-ginger dipping sauce
For the shrimp
  1. 2 bay leaves
  2. 1 lemon, quartered, plus more for serving
  3. 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  4. 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  5. 2 tablespoons salt
  6. 1 pound large uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails intact
For the sauce
  1. 1/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  2. 3 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
  3. 1 green onion, green parts only, minced
  4. Juice of 1 lemon
  5. Juice of 1 lime
  6. 1 tablespoon finely grated ginger
  7. 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  8. 1/4 teaspoon granulated sugar
  9. 1/4 teaspoon grated garlic
Make the shrimp
  1. In a large pot, combine 8 cups water, bay leaves, quartered lemon wedges, peppercorns, coriander seeds, and salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the shrimp and simmer until the tails curl slightly and the shrimp is just cooked through, about 3-4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the shrimp onto a plate and chill in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  2. While the shrimp is chilling, make the sauce by combining all the sauce ingredients with 3 tablespoons of water in a small bowl. Mix to combine and refrigerate for at least 1 hour prior to serving.
  3. Shrimp can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
Adapted from Food Network Kitchens
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
Recipe adapted from Food Network Kitchens

© Simple Everyday Food. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use any of my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or kindly link back to this post for the recipe.

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Before I try to sell you on how delicious this fish is, I’ll just tell you what Brian said today after he took a few bites of it. Now mind you, he’s really not a big fan of fish, unless it’s walleye beer battered and fried. So the fact that he loved it so much says a lot about how good it was.


“This is probably the best fish I’ve ever had. It’s way better than walleye.”

“This may be the best thing I’ve ever made on the grill”. He’s made plenty of yummy things on the grill before, but this is definitely his best grilled fish ever. And what’s even more impressive is that it was his first time grilling fish directly on a grill.

“If I would’ve won the powerball, I could make these and eat it 2-3 times a day!”

Yep, it was that good. I thought it was delicious as well. I’m a big fan of white, flaky fish (sea bass, cod) as opposed to denser meatier fish (salmon, mahi mahi). Though I’ve only had a handful of very memorable experiences with fish entrees the past few years, this definitely tops the charts. I can probably eat this three times a week and totally be happy with it.


caribbean citrus marinated grilled sea bass
  1. 2 6-7 oz fresh sea bass
  2. EVOO
  3. Salt
For the marinade
  1. 2 teaspoons orange zest
  2. 1/2 cup orange juice
  3. 1 teaspoon lime zest
  4. 1/4 lime juice
  5. 1/4 EVOO
  6. 1/4 chile and garlic powder
  7. 1 and 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
  8. 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  9. 1 teaspoon minced jalapeno pepper
  10. 3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  11. 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  12. 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  1. In a medium bowl, combine all the marinade ingredients. Place the fish fillets into the bowl, making sure all sides of the fish are coated with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate for 3 hours, turning the fish over halfway through to make sure all surfaces are evenly marinated.
  2. Prepare your grill for direct cooking over high heat.
  3. Remove the fish from the bowl, brush with EVOO and sprinkle with salt.
  4. Grill the fillets, skin side up over direct high heat for 8-10 minutes, turning once after 6-7 minutes or when they're easily released from the cooking grate.
  5. Serves 2
  1. Cooking time may be based on how thick your fish fillets are. Eight to 10 minutes is for fillets that are about 1" thick.
Adapted from Weber's Way To Grill
Adapted from Weber's Way To Grill
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
It’s important that you use fresh fish for this. Don’t take the shortcut and use frozen fish.. it’s not going to taste the same. If you can’t find sea bass, use whatever else is fresh and available – cod, shrimp, scallops, halibut, swordfish, etc.

This fish is perfectly marinated with oranges, limes, garlic, seasonings, and jalapeno peppers for a spicy kick. You place it on the grill skin side up so the fish ends up with beautiful grill marks. It’s smokey, citrus-y, tender, moist, and very flaky. You know a piece of fish is perfectly cooked when the fish flakes apart very easily with a fork! I was in heaven :)



Recipe from Weber’s Way To Grill by Jamie Purviance

© Simple Everyday Food. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use any of my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or kindly link back to this post for the recipe.

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Summer. It usually means hot (and humid) days, being outside, and eating light.

When I say “eating light“, I don’t mean “light” as in “not eating a whole lot” – I mean “light” as in “eating meals that are light in flavor“.


There is a reason why winter = comfort food season. People want to sit at home wrapped up in a blanket eating a plate of hot cheesy pasta casserole or a bowl of hot creamy soup. No one wants to do all that when it’s 95 degrees out.

Well, I don’t mind it that much, but I know most people would prefer not eat a steaming hot bowl of soup when they’re hot and sweaty already.

I think tacos are the perfect summer food. It’s light, easy to make, customizable, healthy, and its flavor can be easily tweaked based on what meats you make and what toppings you add to it.

Chicken fajitas.



Seafood (fish, shrimp, etc).

Then pile on the toppings that you like: Beans. Cheese. Lettuce. Tomatoes. Avocados. Sour cream.

No matter what your preference is, there’s usually a perfect taco for you. You can have a family of picky (and non-picky) eaters, but when it comes to tacos, everyone can easily add their favorite toppings and be a happy camper at the dinner table.

Now that I’ve done enough rambling, let me talk about these tacos. They’re simple. They’re healthy. They don’t take a whole lot of prep time in the kitchen, and they’re delicious. Deeeee-licious.

I basically took my crispy cod sandwich with spicy mayo, eliminated the bun, cut the fish fillets into fish sticks, and put them in a soft flour tortilla. Drizzle on the spicy mayo, and viola! Fish tacos.


Yep, it’s that easy. Easy peasy.

easy peasy fish tacos
  1. 1 lb cod filets
  2. 1 egg
  3. 1 cup plain panko bread crumbs
  4. 1 package of 6" flour tortillas
  5. An assortment of toppings
for the panko bread crumb seasoning
  1. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  2. 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  3. 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  4. 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  5. 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
for the spicy mayo
  1. 1/3 cup mayo
  2. 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  3. 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  4. 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  5. 1/4-1/2 teaspoon hot sauce, depending on taste
  1. Preheat oven at 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.
  2. Place cod fillets on a plate and pat dry with paper towels. Slice/cut the fillets into sizes of fish sticks, about 2" pieces. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the egg. In another large shallow bowl, combine all the ingredients for the panko bread crumbs (and its seasonings).
  4. Dip the fish sticks into the egg wash. Transfer them to the shallow bowl containing the bread crumbs. Flip them around a couple times, making sure that every inch of it is covered with the bread crumbs, transfer to baking sheet (you may have to do this in several rounds to prevent overcrowding of the bowls). Bake for 20 minutes until the bread crumbs look golden and crispy.
  5. In the meantime, make the spicy mayo: combine all the ingredients in a small bowl, whisk to combine. If desired, transfer the mayo into a small Ziploc bag and cut a small hole in the corner for easy drizzling.
  6. Once the fish is done cooking, assemble your tacos: place a few fish sticks in the middle of your tortilla, top with toppings, and drizzle with the spicy mayo.
  7. Serves 2-3
  1. We warmed the tortillas up in a small pan over medium-high heat, about 15 seconds on each side.
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
Making tacos really can’t get a whole lot simpler than this. Not only do these tacos deliver in flavor, it also has a variety of textures as well – the crispiness of the fish, the softness of the tortilla, the crunchiness of the shredded lettuce, and the creaminess of the mayo… it has every texture one bite of food will ever need.


So what are you waiting for? Put this on your meal planner for the week!


© Simple Everyday Food. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use any of my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or kindly link back to this post for the recipe.

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Do you like peanuts? Do you like limes? Do you like Thai peanut sauce?

If you answered “yes” to all of the above, well, you’re in luck. Tonight’s marinade is inspired by the peanut sauce that often accompanies a lot of Thai food. It’s almost similar to the peanut sauce I used in my pad thai.

Actually, now that I think about it, about 80% of the ingredients found in this recipe can also be found in that peanut sauce as well….

So, if you’re a fan of shrimp pad thai, think of this is a dish as a “skinny” version of it since you’ll be saving yourself a lot of carbs but I promise you what this recipe lacks in carbs, it sure makes it up in flavor!

Another plus to this dish is that since your food processor is going to do all the hard labor for you, there’s really not a whole lot of work that goes into this either.


Throw ingredients into food processor. Pulse. Marinate shrimp. Throw on grill. Enjoy.



It’s as easy as “1, 2, 3!”

And if you’re making this as an appetizer for a party, your hungry guests wouldn’t have to wait long either since it only takes 4-5 minutes on the grill, and BAM! These bad boys are done and ready to be served.

peanut-lime marinated shrimp
For the marinade
  1. 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  2. 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  3. 3 tablespoons unsalted peanuts
  4. 1/2 teaspoon lime zest
  5. 2 tablespoons lime juice
  6. 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  7. 1/3 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
  8. 2.5 tablespoons ginger, roughly chopped
  9. 1 large clove of garlic
  10. 1 teaspoon hot chili sauce
  11. 12-15 jumbo grilling shrimp
  1. In the food processor, combine all the marinade ingredients and pulse until smooth and there aren't any big chunks of ingredients visible. Combine shrimp and marinade in a medium-sized bowl, toss to evenly coat the shrimp, cover and set aside at room temperature for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Using a charcoal grill, place shrimp over direct high heat. Cover and grill until shrimp are firm to the touch, lightly charred, and slightly opaque in the center, turning once (about 2-3 minutes per side).
  3. Remove from grill and serve with a fresh squeeze of lime juice, if desired.
Adapted from Weber Grills
Adapted from Weber Grills
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/


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When you find a good recipe, it never hurts to make it again… right?

Our dry-rubbed ribeye steaks from a few months back was such a success that we decided to make it again tonight to kick-start the weekend. Except this time we decided to be fancy and make some grilled shrimp to make a surf-and-turf instead.

Wooo… fancy, eh?

We’ve never made shrimp on the grill before, so it was a first for us.

We decided on some spicy Cajun rubbed shrimp with a spicy chipotle mayonnaise dipping sauce.


It sounds fancy, but it’s actually quite simple to make. If you like shrimp and you like spicy dipping sauces, there’s no excuse why you shouldn’t try this out this summer!



cajun shrimp with spicy chipotle mayonnaise
For the shrimp
  1. 1 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined with tail on
  2. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  3. 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
  4. 1/2 tablespoon chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, finely chopped
  5. 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
For the mayonnaise
  1. 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  2. 2 canned chipotles in adobo sauce
  3. 1 teaspoon adobo sauce
  4. Juice of 1/4 lime
For the shrimp
  1. Soak bamboo skewers in water. In the meantime, get your charcoal grill ready so it's nice and hot.
  2. In a large bowl, toss shrimp with olive oil, brown sugar, Cajun seasoning, and chopped chipotle peppers so all the shrimp are evenly coated with seasoning.
  3. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. With 3-4 shrimp per skewer, cook on grill over direct heat, about 1-2 minutes per side, or until they turn pink, turning once or twice (we cooked ours for 1.5 minutes per side and they were perfectly done).
For mayonnaise sauce
  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend. Transfer to a small bowl and chill in refrigerator until ready to serve.
  1. Depending on taste, you can add more or less chipotle peppers to your seasoning & mayonnaise sauce. Our mayo turned out to be a little spicier than what I thought, but it was still quite delicious.
Adapted from Scrumpdillyicious
Adapted from Scrumpdillyicious
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
Even though my steak tasted amazing, the star on my plate was definitely the shrimp. They were succulent, juicy, flavorful, spicy all at the same time.

We threw some russet potatoes in the oven for a quick side of (unhealthy) carbs.


The chilled mayo dipping sauce can play tricks on your palate though – just when you think the chilled mayo was going to balance out the hot spiciness of the shrimp, you taste the kick of the chipotle peppers in the sauce. Although spicy, they were super addicting. These would be great for either a side dish (like we did), or as an appetizer if you have a group of people over for a cookout this summer.


Recipe adapted from Scrumpdillyicious

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