Grilled Corn Cheese Dip

grilled corn and cheese dip

grilled corn and cheese dip

Summer is the one of my favorite seasons for appetizers, especially a dip! There are so many fresh ingredients available. During the colder months I usually make heavier appetizers since they are so comforting, but I love making dips and salsas during the summer! This grilled corn dip is a “lightened” version of my bacon dip. It is by no means healthy, but this dip is definitely a good alternative to some of the others out there.

grilled corn and cheese dip

This is one of those easy go to dips that you can serve at a BBQ or a casual gathering. These ooey gooey bites won’t stick around long! In all honesty I was just playing around with recipes when I made this. Patrick and I finished it off in about 15 minutes. Such a perfect combo of flavors. Everything I want in a summer grilled corn bite!

grilled corn and cheese dip

I served this dip up with a toasted baguette, but it would be great with some tortilla chips or fresh veggies. Our farmers market has some amazing sweet corn available right now PERFECT for grilling. We grilled a few cobs then let them cool before cutting the kernels off. Something about the sweet corn and sharp cheese just make such a fantastic bite!

Grilled Corn Cheese Dip
Recipe type: Appetizer
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
Fresh summer ingredients come together in this super cheesy dip!
  • 3 cups of grilled corn
  • 1 small sweet onion chopped
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • 1 cup of light sour cream
  • ½ cup of mayo
  • 1 tsp of smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp of garlic powder
  • 2 cups of sharp shredded cheddar
  • ½ cup of pico de gallo
  • salt and pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a sauce pan fry the chopped onions with the tbsp of butter.
  3. When they are nice and caramelized take off the heat.
  4. In a large bowl mix together the sour cream, mayo, paprika, garlic powder, and corn.
  5. Stir in the fried onions and one cup of cheese.
  6. Scoop into an oven safe dish.
  7. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. Cover with remaining cheese and bake for 15 minutes.
  9. Top with the pico de gallo and serve!

grilled corn and cheese dip

Enjoy at your next cookout! If you really want to spice it up add a little hot sauce on top.  Don’t forget to tag #kelliericecakes if you make this dip!

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Pollo Asado Street Corn Nachos

pollo asado street corn nachos

pollo asado street corn nachos

Patrick and I are trying to eat whole farm fresh foods, but sometimes you really get those cravings for something cheesy and comforting. When you make these dishes at home you can really control what is going into them. These Pollo Asado Street Corn Nachos were perfect for our date night at home! We both love fresh grilled corn so I wanted to make that the star of the dish. It was a fresh sweet crunch that really lightened up a typically heavy dish.

pollo asado street corn nachos

I am not a huge fan of cotija cheese which is usually paired with street corn. I knew I was going to use queso blanco which is a processed cheese so I wanted to make sure every other ingredient was fresh and organic. I started with organic restaurant style tortilla chips. I found some by Mission Tortillas at the grocery store that were thin and only made with a few ingredients. I lightened up the queso by heating it up with a little milk and drizzled over the chips. Then a little chopped fresh poblano peppers. A very generous sprinkle of the grilled corn topped with some grilled pollo asado. Then another generous sprinkle of grilled corn followed by black beans. I topped everything off with a squeeze of lime and some fresh grated Parmesan cheese.

pollo asado street corn nachos

My favorite place to pick up my ingredients is a farmers market or a grocery store marketed as an organic food chain. We love Sprouts market. They always have very fresh ingredients and I have never been disappointed in the quality. One of our go to proteins is their marinated chicken thighs. Rubbed in spices then marinated in olive oil, red onion, and cilantro these thighs always taste amazing off the grill. You can definitely marinate the chicken yourself, but sometimes its nice finding a pre-marinated protein that you can trust.

Pollo Asado Street Corn Nachos
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
Lighten up your nachos with grilled chicken and fresh ingredients!
  • 1 cup of sweet yellow corn grilled and cut off the cobb
  • ½ poblano pepper chopped
  • fresh baby bella mushrooms, chopped
  • grilled chicken thighs, chopped
  • ½ cup of queso blanco
  • ½ cup of black beans
  • 3 cups of organic corn tortillas
  • For the toppings:
  • Pickled jalapenos
  • Fresh tomato
  • Smashed avocado
  • Fresh lime
  • Shredded Parmesan
  • Chipotle Tabasco (Because its delicious!)
  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Line a pan with the chips.
  3. Drizzle a little of the queso over the top.
  4. Layer the all the other ingredients.
  5. Bake for 10 - 15 minutes until the chips are golden brown.
  6. Finish with fresh lime and all the fresh toppings!

pollo asado street corn nachos

I hope you enjoy as much as we do!

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Buttery Soft Pretzels – Perfect For Superbowl!

Buttery Soft Pretzels

Buttery Soft Pretzels

Soft pretzel are one of my favorite go to appetizers. These come together so quickly! They are easy to freeze for later and you can customize them with all your favorite add ins! Bacon cheese pretzel anyone? Today I am sharing my super good buttery soft pretzel recipe. The simplest version perfect for any dips you might be whipping up for Super Bowl!

Buttery Soft Pretzels

Do you ever watch them make pretzels at the mall? I am always memorized by how fast they roll the dough. I know if I trying to make my pretzels that quickly I would end up smacking myself in the fast with dough! While I do not know the exact magic that goes into making those beautiful extra large mall pretzels I do know how to get pretty darn close.

Buttery Soft PretzelsThese are so easy to make then freeze before baking. Then you have all the hard work finished. You can just pop them in the oven before your event … or snack!


Buttery Soft Pretzels - Perfect For Superbowl!
Recipe type: Appetizer, Bread
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8
Soft Buttery Pretzels
  • 3 cups of Bread Flour
  • 2 eggs room temp
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter melted, divided
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 packet of dry yeast
  • 1 cup of warm milk
  • 1 tsp of sugar
  • 1 tbsp of kosher salt for sprinkling
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 6 cups of water for boiling
  1. In a standing mixer with a dough hook add the yeast, sugar, and warm milk.
  2. Let sit for about 5 minutes until bubbly.
  3. Add in the salt, eggs, and half of the butter.
  4. Stir on the lowest setting.
  5. Add in the flour.
  6. Turn to medium setting until dough forms into a ball.
  7. Cover in the bowl for at least 1 hour while dough rises.
  8. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  9. Cut dough into 6 sections for large pretzels or 8 sections for medium pretzels.
  10. Beginning boiling water over high heat.
  11. Add in the baking soda.
  12. Roll each dough section into a long snake like shape.
  13. Tie into a knot or twist into a pretzel shape.
  14. Pinch the dough in the sections where ends meet or sections are touching so they don't come apart while boiling.
  15. Drop the pretzels into the boiling water for about 30 seconds.
  16. Pat dry and brush with melted butter.
  17. Sprinkle on the salt.
  18. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
  19. Brush on more butter after baking if you want super rich pretzels.

These would be delish with some cheese dip! We like ours with a little warmed honey mustard.

How do you eat your soft pretzels?

Buttery Soft Pretzels

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Baked Chicken Wings With A Garlic Buffalo Sauce

baked chicken wings

baked chicken wings

We are talking wings today. Superbowl is around the corner and these would be a perfect appetizer! BUT for me this is a way to have my favorite meal lightened up. They are so crispy with a burst of juice and all that spice from the sauce. These are one of my new favorite meals for sure! I served some salt and olive oil baked fries on the side. Our ranch was 1 cup of light sour cream, 1 tbsp of milk, 1 tsp of dill weed, 1 tsp of garlic powder, and 2 tsp of ground pepper. If you are doing Whole 30 or eating Paleo you can easily swap this out for approved ranch with homemade mayo.

baked chicken wings

Now I want to talk about this sauce. One of my favorite things to cook in the kitchen is chopped garlic. I love the smell of garlic heating up in olive oil or butter. Patrick always comes in the kitchen and asks what I’m doing when I drop that garlic into the skillet. You can use olive oil, butter, ghee, coconut oil – whatever you have on hand. I used 2 tbsp of salted butter then added 2 heaping tablespoons of chopped garlic. Then I sauteed for a few minutes over medium heat. Do not let the garlic brown. All you do after that is pour in a cup of your favorite hot sauce and finish with fresh ground pepper. Delicious!

baked chicken wings

Usually baked wings have a bad reputation because it is SO HARD to replicate that beautiful fried wing. The trick to getting that crispy skin is to boil the wings for 3-5 minutes before baking. You are going to render a lot of that fat which will help it crisp up fast!

Baked Chicken Wings With A Garlic Buffalo Sauce
Recipe type: Appetizer, Chicken Wings
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-3
Crispy baked chicken wings in a garlic buffalo sauce!
  • 1 pound of mixed drumsticks and flats (frozen or fresh)
  • 6 quarts of water for boiling
  • 1 cup of hot sauce
  • 2 tbsp of butter (or clarified butter)
  • 2 tbsp of chopped garlic
  • 1 tbsp of fresh ground pepper ( you can eyeball this, I just like to have enough pepper to speckle throughout the sauce)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Bring water up to a boil and boil the wings for 5 minutes.
  3. You will start to see the fat pulling off into the water.
  4. Drain and pat dry.
  5. Line the wings a baking tray. (If possible try not to use a non stick pan)
  6. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes then flip to cook the other side.
  8. I used a bench scraper to flip so I could get any skin that was starting to stick.
  9. Bake for another 15 - 20 minutes depending on your preferred crispy level.


To make the fries just slice some potatoes and toss in olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden brown!

You won’t ever pull out your fryer again after you try these wings!


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(Easy) Holiday Appetizer Platter

holiday entertaining

holiday platter

I love when we go to parties and they have platters of meats, cheeses and crackers. Holiday appetizer platters are so beautiful and universal. Actually, I attended a friend’s wedding and she had piles of different meats, fruits, cheeses, crackers, and breads. It was absolutely a.m.a.z.i.n.g. Patrick and I like to invite our friends over for game nights and this is one of my easy go to appetizers. Bonus- it won’t break the bank.

cheesy bacon dip

This bacon dip is the star of the show. I have to confess- I’m pretty sure I have already posted this dip recipe on the blog. I have now made it so many times that I believe I have perfected the recipe. I still remember the first time I tried this dip. We went to a friend’s house for dinner and her mother in law pulled this dish out. I usually avoid creamy dips. There are just so many others I prefer, but this one had such an awesome bacon fragrance. Who says no to bacon? It is so cheesy, sweet, and a little spicy. Perfect with this bread!

holiday platter

Since I made a lot of bacon for the dip and the tray I had a pan filled with bacon grease left over. I decided to take a spoonful of the grease and heat it with some roasted garlic. I flash fried my butterflied shrimp then seasoned them with salt and pepper. Super easy and delicious!

holiday entertaining

You can definitely pick up some baguettes or crackers for the tray, but I used my favorite bread recipe. You can find it here. I love boars head sausage so I picked up a roll along side some briny marinated olives.

The best part about these platters is how easy to customize they are.  You can just buy whatever is on sale or whatever you are feeling that day.

(Easy) Holiday Appetizer Platter
Recipe type: Appetizer
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: Party
A holiday platter filled with tasty goodies!
  • For the Dip:
  • ½ pound of thick sliced bacon, cooked and chopped ( cook a few extra pieces to add on the board if you want)
  • 8 ounces of cream cheese
  • ½ cup of pepper jelly
  • 1 cup of mozzarella (smoked mozz is also awesome)
  • 1 tsp of garlic powder
  • 1 tsp of cayenne pepper
  • For the shrimp:
  • 1 tbsp of bacon grease
  • 1 pound of shrimp
  • fresh garlic or roasted garlic chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • For the platter:
  • 1 cup of peppers
  • 2 tomatoes sliced
  • 1 cup of marinated olives
  • 1 head of garlic roasted
  • bread or crackers
  • salami or sausage sliced
  • For the honey mustard:
  • ¼ cup of boards head honey mustard
  • ¼ cup of honey
  • 2 tbsp of grainy mustard
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Mix the cream cheese and jelly.
  3. Add in the bacon, garlic and pepper.
  4. Add half a cup of cheese and mix throughout.
  5. In a baking dish pour the cream cheese mixture and top with remaining cheese.
  6. Bake for about 15 minutes until brown and bubbling.
  7. In a frying pan heat the bacon grease and garlic.
  8. Flash fry the shrimp until pink.
  9. Season with salt and pepper.
  10. In a bowl mix the mustard, honey, and honey mustard. (SO easy!)
  11. Arrange everything on a platter or large baking sheet.
  12. Enjoy!


I hope I was able to make your holiday a little easier!




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Sesame Tater Tots w/ Sriracha Cheese Sauce

Sometimes a meal comes along that inspires you to try new things. Foods that you would never think could pair well together. In Atlanta we have a food truck that is an American/ Asian fusion. One of my favorite dishes that they serve are super crispy salty fries with spicy sriracha nacho cheese.

Here is a picture from last summer when Patrick and I took his daughter to get some of those fries during food truck night.  I also want to point out this awesome action shot of that sriracha splattering out of Patrick’s burger.

Anyways back to the tots! I tossed these tater tots in some sesame oil and salt then pan fried them. I whipped up my own version of sriracha nacho cheeses then added fresh grated cheddar, sour cream, more sriracha, and fresh jalapeño.

Mmmm… I miss these.

The best part is they can be made in 30 minutes or less.

Are you hungry yet?

What you need:

Frozen tater tots

1/2 cup separated Sesame oil

1 fresh jalapeño, sliced with seeds removed

2 cups Grated cheddar

1/2 cup whole milk

1/4 cup of flour

Salt and pepper

1/2 cup of sriracha plus more for drizzling

Sour cream

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

In an oven safe saute pan pour 1/4 cup of sesame oil. Heat over medium high. Add half a bag of tater tots (or enough to cover the bottom of the pan).

Toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper.

Once the potatoes start to brown place them in the oven for 15 minutes.

In a sauce pan heat the remaining 1/4 cup of sesame oil over medium heat.

Add in flour and whisk quickly until the mixture thickens and begins to brown. Add milk and whisk until smooth. Add 1 1/2 cups of cheese and sriracha. Season with salt and pepper.

Drizzle over the potatoes and top with remaining cheese, jalapeños, sour cream and sriracha.


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Grilled Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers

grilled stuffed jalapenos

After a month of low carb meals I was running out of options. Our daily feast of chicken and broccoli was getting a little dull. I still wanted to keep the meal low carb, but I didn’t want to sacrifice flavor.

Then I started dreaming about this place in down town Atlanta that makes cream cheese, cheddar, smoked pork fried jalapeno bites. Instead of pork I subbed mushrooms and I grilled everything since I am trying not to eat fried. image2 (42)

These poppers will melt in your mouth. So full of cheesiness and I added some blackening seasoning to kick up the flavor.

When you prep your jalapenos I highly recommend removing all seeds and ribbing. I love my food spicy, but the blackening seasoning is already going to up the heat level.

Grilled Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers
Recipe type: Appetizer
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
Grilled jalapenos stuffed with cheddar, cream cheese and mushrooms.
  • 6 medium jalapenos, halved and cleaned
  • 4 oz low fat cream cheese
  • 1 cup of low fat shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 tbsp blackening seasoning
  • ¼ cup chopped bella mushrooms
  1. Preheat the grill (or the oven at 400)
  2. Mix together cream cheese and cheddar.
  3. Microwave for 30 seconds until the cream cheese is smooth.
  4. Add the mushrooms and seasoning.
  5. Mix then fill each jalapeno half.
  6. I made a foil packet and lined the jalapenos inside.
  7. This will help even out the heat and make sure the peppers are thoroughly cooked.
  8. Grill for 20 minutes checking to make sure they do not burn or roast for 15 minutes.

Perfect for a side or your next family BBQ!

image3 (30)

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Coconut Shrimp and Citrus Dip

coconut shrimp

Coconut Shrimp

Shrimp are not necessary a Valentine’s Day staple, but in our home this is a dish that reminds us of our first Valentine’s Day together.

We wanted a fun place close by that served seafood so we decided on Bahama Breeze last V-day. We ordered the signature coconut shrimp appetizer while we were waiting on our table. Jumbo shrimp perfectly butterflied with a sweet crunch dipped into a sauce that always makes my mouth water.

If you have not been to a Bahama Breeze before – try and picture a Caribbean themed restaurant filled with wicker chairs and tropical drinks. Usually there is some sort of live band playing island music. The atmosphere is so light and fun it really is just a bonus that the food is pure heaven.

So the other night we were debating on what to eat at the grocery store when I spotted jumbo shrimp on sale. I dipped them in a sweet and salty coconut panko mix that is a spot on copy cat texture.  I was shocked when I researched the citrus sauce and saw Bahama Breeze has the recipe posted on their website! It truly is the perfect companion to these shrimp.

coconut shrimp

Here is the link to the Bahama Breeze Citrus Mustard Sauce if you want to try it out!

Coconut Shrimp and Citrus Dip
Recipe type: Dinner, Seafood
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
Crunchy coconut shrimp with a sweet citrus dip.
  • 1 pound Large Shrimp - vein and shells removed (20-25 count)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups of flour divided
  • 2 cups of panko crumbs
  • 1 cup of shredded coconut sweetened
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp red pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • parsley for sprinkling
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 quart of canola oil for frying
  1. Preheat the oil to 350.
  2. Butterfly each shrimp by running your knife down the back of the shrimp ¾ of the way though until each side begins to open up.
  3. Set up three bowls.
  4. One with one cup of flour.
  5. One with the 3 eggs beaten.
  6. And the last bowl with one cup of flour, 2 cups of panko, coconut and the salt, paprika, red pepper, and garlic powder.
  7. Dip each shrimp into the flour then the eggs then the panko mixture.
  8. Pat this mixture onto the shrimp. It should be a fairly thick layer.
  9. Fry for 3-4 minutes each.
  10. Do not crowd.
  11. Sprinkle shrimp with parsley and squeeze lemon over the top.

image1 (57)

Hopefully I have inspired you to make this yummy app for your valentine! (Or yourself! Nothing wrong with that!)

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Homemade Soft Pretzels With Cheddar Beer Dip

soft pretzel with cheddar beer dip

homemade pretzel

Who can say no to the buttery pretzel scent that is always lingering in the mall? Soft and fluffy drenched in butter. They have such a great consistency that is so difficult to replicate. Often times you find copycat recipes online that promise to deliver the same taste, but with wholesome ingredients. I always feel like I’ve been let down. Sure they come out nice, but it just isn’t the same as what I was craving.

This recipe IS the mall pretzel dupe! I would almost be as bold as to say they are better than the mall pretzels. I gave some to my dad and brother over the weekend. They were powerful enough to turn my dad (a non pretzel believer). He said the buttery dough had a sweetness that had him reaching for seconds and thirds!

Imagine all that soft pretzel goodness with a side of cheddar beer dip. I used a Sam Adams hoppy red brew. The bitter beer with the deep cheddar flavor was the perfect pair with my pretzel.

Homemade Soft Pretzels With Cheddar Beer Dip
Recipe type: Breads, Appetizers
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
  • 4 cups of AP flour (I used King Aurther)
  • 1 cup of light brown sugar
  • 2 cups of 2% milk warmed (not too hot to kill the yeast)
  • 2 packets of active yeast
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 stick of melted butter separated (slightly cooled)
  • 1 egg plus 1 tsp water (egg wash)
  • Coarse salt
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 6 cups of boiling water
  • 2 oz of shredded sharp cheddar
  • ½ cup of beer (I used Hoppy Red, pumpkin beer would also be super yummy)
  • red pepper, paprika and garlic powder to taste
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 4 tbsp butter
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. I used a bread machine, but you can use a mixer with bread paddle. Combine the flour, yeast, salt, ½ stick of butter, sugar and milk in the bread machine. ( If using a standing mixer then mix the milk, sugar and yeast first to active then add other ingredients) My bread machine will knead and rise the dough for 2 hours. You can also let the dough rise in a warm area, covered. The dough will double in size. Once the dough has risen, cut into 8 equal sections on a floured surface.
  3. Start to boil your water and baking soda. Roll each section into a long rope about 1½ inches thick. I turn my dough into a U shape then tie into a standard pretzel. I made jumbo pretzels, but you can make smaller portions. Just remember whatever size you have once you finish rolling will double in the baking soda bath.
  4. Dip each pretzel into the boiling water and splash a little on the top of the pretzel. Do not let them boil for more then 30 seconds each. The longer the dough boils the chewier the dough will be. Place on a prepared pan and brush with egg wash.
  5. Bake for 10 minutes then brush each pretzel with melted butter then sprinkle with salt. Bake for remaining 10 minutes. ( The time will vary depending on the size of the pretzel. You are looking for golden brown) Let cool then enjoy!
  7. Melt butter in a sauce pan and add flour. Whisk continuously until the combination begins to brown. Add in the beer. The sauce will thicken very quickly. Just keep stirring. You can add more beer or even milk to thin out if needed. Add in the cheese and seasonings. Whisk until all the cheese is melted. Serve immediately!

soft pretzel with cheddar beer dip


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