The Pioneer Woman Tasty Kitchen
Avatar of Erika (TK)

Let’s Talk Zucchini!

Posted by in Kitchen Talk

Tasty Kitchen Blog: Kitchen Talk (Zucchini)

These days, when I walk into my local vegetable market, the bin holding zucchini is just a sea of deep green freshness. Sometimes, in the winter, you’ll see some sad-looking specimens. But not in the summer. I have a hard time resisting them, even though I usually still have a small supply at home. I can’t help it—fresh vegetables are my weakness. Especially since I’ve given up trying to grow anything in my backyard. (The deer and groundhogs won that battle.)

Whether you are fortunate enough to have zucchini plants in your garden, or like me, want to bring home way too much zucchini every time you head to the market, there’s no denying it: there’s zucchini everywhere. So let’s put that abundance to good use, shall we? Tell us:

What’s your favorite way to use zucchini?

I love grilled vegetables, like Ree’s Grilled Zucchini with Lemon Salt that you see in the photo above. Zucchini bread is another favorite, and I’ll sometimes add shredded zucchini to other baking recipes because I’m sneaky like that. As a bonus, the zucchini makes the end product moist, so I think that’s a win-win!

How about you? Do you have any favorite ways to use zucchini? Share your ideas with us below! And, as always, if you have a recipe link, share away!


Avatar of Erika (TK)

5 Years and a Blendtec Giveaway (Winner Announced!)

Posted by in Miscellaneous

Thanks for all the anniversary greetings, everyone!

The winner of the Blendtec blender is:

#669 Izzybee: “Ice cream, ice cream and more ice cream.” (Yes, yes, and oh yes.)

Congratulations! Contact to claim your loot.

Tasty Kitchen Blog: 5 Years and a Blendtec Giveaway!

Hi friends! We’re celebrating a special day today, the fifth anniversary of Tasty Kitchen! Five years of delicious recipes and fabulous community. We want to say thanks to you for being a part of Tasty Kitchen, so we’re having a week of giveaways—5 years, 5 days of fun loot. Here we go!

Today, it’s all about the Blendtec, baby. Summer leaves us craving cold stuff! Milkshakes, smoothies, cold soups, icy coffee, even nut milks. We all need a mean machine for blending, and the Blendtec WildSide blender is definitely that. Check out these scrumptious blender recipes:

Tasty Kitchen Blog: 5 Years and a Blendtec Giveaway (Pineapple Coconut Pear Milkshakes, submitted by TK member Ann of How Crazy Cooks)

Pineapple Coconut Pear Milkshakes from TK member Ann. So creamy and coconutty.

Tasty Kitchen Blog: 5 Years and a Blendtec Giveaway (Nutella S’more Iced Coffee, submitted by TK member Lindsey of Pardon the Dog Hair)

Nutella S’more Iced Coffee from TK member Lindsey. No fire needed! And it has marshmallow whipped cream. Score.

Tasty Kitchen Blog: 5 Years and a Blendtec Giveaway (Chocolate Hazelnut Milk, submitted by TK member Three Many Cooks)

Chocolate Hazelnut Milk from Three Many Cooks. All you need to know is two words: liquid Nutella. Amen.

Tasty Kitchen Blog: 5 Years and a Blendtec Giveaway (Chilled Tomato Soup and Green Goddess Whipped Cream, submitted by TK member Running with Tweezers)

Chilled Tomato Soup & Green Goddess Whipped Cream from Tami of Running with Tweezers. Perfect for summer.

Tasty Kitchen Blog: 5 Years and a Blendtec Giveaway (Watermelon Jalapeno Margaritas, submitted by TK member Jackie Dodd)

Watermelon Jalapeno Margaritas from Jackie Dodd of Domestic Fits. Sweet meets heat. And tequila. Yeah, baby.

Tasty Kitchen Blog: 5 Years and a Blendtec Giveaway!

So, are you ready to win that blender? It’s easy!


To enter this giveaway, just answer the following question in the Comments section of this post:

“What’s your favorite way to cool off in the summer?”

We shared five of our favorite ways above. Now we want to hear from you!


One entry per person, please. Contest ends tonight at midnight PST.

Winners will be chosen randomly and announced tomorrow morning. Be sure to check in every day this week for the winner and the next giveaway!

And happy 5th TK anniversary you! We wouldn’t be here without ya.


Avatar of Erika (TK)

Looks Delicious! Philly Steak Grilled Cheese

Posted by in Looks Delicious!

Tasty Kitchen Blog: Looks Delicious! (Philly Steak Grilled Cheese, submitted by Dana Blacklock of Killing Thyme)

Plain grilled cheese is incredible on its own. A Philly cheesesteak? Sublime. But when you put the two together and then throw in sautéed onions, peppers, and mushrooms, then you’re just showing off. Wrap it up in foil and throw it on a grid over fire? Now you’re flirting with sandwich greatness.

I can think of so many words to describe this Philly Steak Grilled Cheese, but I think Dana hit upon the perfect pair in her description of this sandwich: “Messy, and amazing.”

Thanks for sharing this, Dana! Now I know the very next thing I’m putting on my grill.

Have a great weekend, folks!

Avatar of Erika (TK)

Homemade Ice Cream Tips and Tricks

Posted by in Kitchen Talk

Tasty Kitchen Blog: Kitchen Talk (Homemade Ice Cream Tips and Tricks)

There’s something deeply nostalgic about homemade ice cream—memories of taking turns at the crank, the sound of the ice and salt working their charm on a canister of cream, and the satisfaction of finally holding that bowl of frozen goodness in your hand, oblivious to the hot summer sun beating down on you.

But homemade ice cream presents a few challenges, like unwanted ice crystals or mixtures that refuse to freeze properly—or at all. Ice cream making can be a tricky science (just ask Jeni or David) but armed with the right tools, techniques, and pointers, anyone can do it and be rewarded with a creamy concoction that’ll make both Ben and Jerry proud.

So let’s talk about this here ice cream making! Tell us:

Do you have any tips and tricks for making ice cream?

What I love most about ice cream is the ability to make all kinds of crazy flavors. Like Thai tea ice cream. Vietnamese coffee ice cream. (Notice a trend?) What continues to serve me well in all my experimentation is remembering how each component affects the final product:

  1. Sugar improves the texture and flavor of ice cream. It also lowers the freezing temperature of the base, which means the ice cream is less likely to freeze into something as hard as a rock. But add too much, and the ice cream may not freeze at all.
  2. When you increase the water content (like, say, replacing cream with skim milk), you also increase the chances that your ice cream will developlarge ice crystals and freeze hard like the aforementioned rock.
  3. Fat also improves texture (makes it smoother) and flavor (makes it richer). It also makes the ice cream base more stable. Yay for fat!
  4. Always, always serve yourself more than 2 scoops. Of course.

There’s a whole science to ice cream making and the tips above are just a few basic ones I’ve found most helpful as a simple guideline. I’ve found that keeping them in mind can come in handy when I’m adapting a recipe.

Nanci says that when storing ice cream (even when store-bought), she puts a sheet of plastic wrap on top of the ice cream and presses it right down onto the surface of the ice cream before adding the lid. This helps to prevent ice crystals from forming on the top. Her husband thinks that store-bought ice, as opposed to that from your own freezer, works better to use in your ice cream churn. She says, “He feels it’s more solid and colder (if that’s possible).” Finally, she suggests using real cream for a truly creamy result. (I second that.)

How about you? Have any tips to share? Or maybe favorite flavors? Or maybe you have a nagging ice cream making problem you just can’t figure out. Whatever it is, drop us a note below and let’s talk homemade ice cream!


Avatar of Erika (TK)

Looks Delicious! Queso Fundido con Chorizo a la Tequila

Posted by in Looks Delicious!

Queso Fundido con Chorizo a la Tequila The title says it all. Cheese. Chorizo. Tequila. Then everything is flambéed so your guests will be just as wowed by the fire display inside your kitchen. I can't think of anything more perfect right now. Thanks for…

Avatar of Erika (TK)

Eating Outdoors

Posted by in Holidays

It's picnic time! Many folks will be outdoors this weekend waiting to watch the skies light up, as burgers and dogs and steaks and every possible cut of meat, fish, vegetable, and even fruit finds a place on the grill. Warm weather and outdoor cooking is a match that just makes sense. Picnics, backyard barbecues, tailgating ... many of us get giddy just thinking…

Avatar of Erika (TK)

Looks Delicious! Bourbon Honey Ice Cream

Posted by in Looks Delicious!

I'm sorry. I just had to share this. The recipe title says it all: Bourbon Honey Ice Cream with Brown Butter Crumble & Fresh Peaches. When I saw this beauty from

Avatar of Erika (TK)

Let’s Talk Burgers!

Posted by in Kitchen Talk

Given the amount of burgers we all seem to be enjoying this summer, it's always nice to change things up a bit and do something a little different to spice things up. So tell us:

Do you have any killer burger tips to share?