30-Minute Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Cinnamon

This 30-Minute Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Cinnamon is an easy from-scratch recipe that will fool people into thinking you spent hours slaving away over a hot stove. It’s the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving menu!A bowl of cranberry sauce topped with orange zest and rosemary.

Well, I was supposed to be taking a little break from new recipes while I work on some other fun things for you, but after whipping up this 30-Minute Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Cinnamon for our Friendsgiving this past weekend, I couldn’t resist sharing it with all of you. It is THAT good.

What Cranberry Camp Are You In?

So, tell me. Are you staunchly in the canned cranberry camp or do you HAVE to have something homemade? Or could you not care less? To be honest, I grew up eating the canned stuff with our family’s Thanksgiving meal, but once I found my love for cooking and realized just how easy it can be to make a fresh batch from scratch, I’ve forced my entire family down this road with me and we’ve never turned back.

As with everything else “made from scratch,” I love the idea that you can control all of the ingredients you use to create the finished product. There’s also no high fructose corn syrup in a homemade version, which we can probably all do without with all of the pumpkin pie, whipped cream and other sweets we’ll be consuming for the next two months.

What Goes Into this 30-Minute Cranberry Sauce?

The answer: Just enough ingredients to make it truly NEXT LEVEL without getting totally crazy. That’s right, you’re likely to have most of these ingredients on hand in your pantry or in your crisper already.

Here’s what you need:

Fresh cranberries (this time of year they’re easy to find in the produce section of most grocery stores)
An orange
Orange liqueur (like Grand Marnier or Triple Sec)
Cinnamon sticks
Water

That’s it! I don’t know about you, but EASY from-scratch recipes without a ton of weird ingredients in them are totally my jam when it comes to the holidays, much like these Pumpkin Popovers or this Cranberry, White Bean and Grain Salad.

An overhead shot of a bowl of 30-minute cranberry sauce topped with orange zest and rosemary.

How Do You Make It?

Let me tell you, if you’re looking for a simple dish to make for Thanksgiving that will wow your crowd, this is it. If you know how to add ingredients to a pot and turn on the stove, and can remember to stir your ingredients every once in a while, then you can totally master this dish. Because that’s all it takes!

Simply add all the ingredients to a saucepan and let it simmer away until the cranberries have burst and an enticing aroma is filling up your house.

How to Store Cranberry Sauce

 Another great thing about this 30-Minute Cranberry Sauce – aside from how few ingredients it takes and how easy it is to make – is that it can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to a few days. So, Meal Prepping Mamas, this one’s for you!

Just transfer it to an airtight container after it’s come down to room temp and then pull it out right before you’re ready to serve. It doesn’t even need to be reheated!A bowl of cranberry sauce flanked by fresh rosemary, cranberries and orange.

How to Serve Cranberry Sauce

I’m normally not one to make a big deal about serving dishes, but when it comes to Thanksgiving, it’s worth paying a little extra attention to what we’re putting all of these delicious homemade recipes in. Here are some serving dishes that would be perfect for your fancy Cranberry Sauce! (These are affiliate links.)

3 crystal serving bowls for serving cranberry sauce
This 3-bowl crystal serving set let’s the bright red color of your sauce really pop!
This serving boat is a modern way to dress up your Thanksgiving table.
I love pumpkin coquettes from Staub so much that I own two of them! Such a fun way to jazz up any holiday table.


Now, tell me, are you adding this to your Thanksgiving menu or what??

30-Minute Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Cinnamon
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 

This 30-Minute Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Cinnamon is an easy from-scratch recipe that will fool people into thinking you spent hours slaving away over a hot stove. It’s the perfect addition to your
Thanksgiving menu!







Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cranberry, meal prep, quick-and-easy, side dish, Thanksgiving, vegan, vegetarian
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 59 kcal
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 16 ounces fresh cranberries
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • Zest of 1 medium orange
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons orange liqueur Such as Grand Marnier or Triple Sec
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan.

  2. Simmer on the stove over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until most of the cranberries have popped and mixture resembles classic cranberry sauce, about 20 minutes. Remove cinnamon sticks.

  3. Let cool and serve at room temperature or store in an airtight refrigerator in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Recipe Notes

DISH DENSITY: Low

 

28 High-Protein Vegetarian Recipes for Toddlers

Many toddlers are picky when it comes to eating meat, even if they’re not on a vegetarian diet. Here is an ultimate roundup of high-protein vegetarian recipes for toddlers, featuring quinoa, beans and lentils as primary ingredients.

When it comes to toddlers’ picky eating habits, one of the food groups I hear most about is meat. Meat can be tricky – it needs to be prepared a certain way that makes it easy for little ones to eat, and the texture can sometimes be offputting. While it’s important to continually expose your child to animal proteins (if your toddler isn’t on a vegetarian diet), there are tons of other ways to ensure your babe is getting this vital nutrient.

Here’s a roundup of 28 fantastic high-protein vegetarian recipes for toddlers, broken down by meal. Seriously, though, there is so much inspiration here! And if you want more tips on how to deal with a picky eater, check out these 9 Easy Ways to Combat Picky Eating in Toddlers.

Without further ado…

BREAKFAST

1. PB&J Quinoa Bowl

Just hold the crunchy almond slivers!

Two PB&J Quinoa Breakfast Bowls complete with toppings, sitting atop striped dish towels.
by CaliGirl Cooking
2. quinoa berry breakfast bowl instant pot
An overhead shot of two Quinoa Berry Breakfast Bowls.
by Green Scheme
3. quinoa blender pancakes
by The Saucy Fig
4. 5 Ingredient eggy quinoa cups
A pan of 5-Ingredient Eggy Quinoa Cups.
by Kidgredients
5. crispy vegan waffles with lentil protein
A plate of Crispy Vegan Waffles with Lentil Protein topped with berries and powdered sugar.
by My Pure Plants

LUNCH

6. baked zucchini, feta and Quinoa Bites
A board full of quinoa bites.
by Whole Food Bellies
7. broccoli cheddar quinoa bars
A stack of two broccoli cheddar quinoa bars.
by Served From Scratch
8. lentil falafel with lime yogurt
A cast iron pan of lentil falafel with lime yogurt dip.
by Greedy Gourmet
9. Veggie Bean Burger
A close-up shot of a veggie burger.
by Spice Cravings
10. easy 15-minute quinoa bites with peas
A stack of 5-ingredient quinoa bites.
by Bite-Sized Kitchen
11. black bean salad with avocado
A bowl of Black Bean Salad with Avocado.
by Dancing Through the Rain

SNACKS

12. roasted cauliflower hummus with rosemary and garlic
Roasted Cauliflower Hummus with Rosemary & Garlic | CaliGirl Cooking
by CaliGirl Cooking
13. easy basil lentil dip
A close-up shot of a bowl of Easy Basil Lentil Dip surrounded by chips.
by The Missing Lokness
14. lemon tahini lentil hummus
An overhead shot of a bowl of Lemon Tahini Lentil Hummus surrounded by fresh rosemary and lemons.
by Bucket List Tummy
15. 5-Minute pumpkin curry hummus
This 5-Minute Pumpkin Curry Hummus takes your average Mediterranean dip and kicks it up a notch with a ton of added flavor. The perfect appetizer or side dish for your next dinner party!
by CaliGirl Cooking
16. kid-friendly quinoa fritters
An overhead shot of a bowl of quinoa fritters with a bowl of marinara dipping sauce.
by Wendy Polisi

DINNER

17. goat cheese quinoa and broccoli casserole in the instant pot
An overhead shot of a bowl of Goat Cheese, Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole.
by Whole Food Bellies
18. vegan white bean mac-and-cheese
A bowl of Vegan White Bean Mac and Cheese with fresh vegetables.
by Rhian’s Recipes
19. pasta e fagioli
A spoonful of pasta e fagioli.
by Christina’s Cucina
20. Instant Pot Lentil Stroganoff
An overhead shot of Instant Pot Lentil Stroganoff.
by Nourish Nutrition Co.
21. enchilada quinoa casserole
A finished dish of Enchilada Quinoa Casserole.
by My Kitchen Love
22. cheesy lentil bake
A finished pan of Cheesy Lentil Bake.
by Love In My Oven
23. one-pot black-eyed peas and spinach rice in instant pot
A bowl full of Black-Eyed Peas and Spinach Rice.
by Piping Pot Curry
24. 15-minute lentil sloppy joe stuffed sweet potatoes
A Lentil Sloppy Joe stuffed sweet potato ready to be devoured.
by Lemons and Zest
25. lentil pizza crust
A sliced pizza featuring Lentil Pizza Crust.
by This Healthy Kitchen
26. lentil tacos
A plate full of Mexican Lentil Tacos.
by Recipes From a Pantry

TREATS

27. Healthy quinoa almond date truffles
A plate of Quinoa Almond Date Truffles.
by Ministry of Curry
28. oatmeal quinoa chocolate chip cookies
A gooey quinoa chocolate chip cookie broken in half.
by Served From Scratch

If you have or come across any other great high-protein vegetarian recipes for toddlers, please let me know about them in the comments below! xo

Miso Furikake Hummus for Next-Level Snacking

This Miso Furikake Hummus takes your hummus snack game to the next level. Umami-rich miso takes the place of traditional tahini and furikake – the favorite Japanese seasoning – is sprinkled on top to give your hummus a flavor like you’ve never tasted before.

A bowl of Miso Furikake Hummus surrounded by fresh vegetables.

I’ve mentioned it before, but I love being inspired for new recipes and flavor combinations by all my travels. While I’m most often inspired to make a travel-inspired dish AFTER I get home from a trip, today I’m sharing something I came up with recently while anxiously anticipating our vacation to Kauai next week. This Miso Furikake Hummus is pretty life-changing, so why don’t you pull up a seat and we’ll talk about it.

It’s no secret that homemade hummus is one of my favorite things to make. As long as you own a food processor or high-powered blender, it’s so easy to make! There are tons of recipes for it here on the blog, including this Mango Sriracha Hummus, this Pumpkin Curry Hummus, this Portobello Hummus and this Roasted Cauliflower Hummus with Rosemary and Garlic.

But today I’m stepping outside of the box even more than I’ve done in the past, and bringing you a Pacific island-inspired version with this umami-rich version featuring miso and furikake.

A close-up shot of Miso Furikake Hummus surrounded by fresh vegetables.

In case you’re not too familiar with either of these tasty Asian ingredients, here’s a quick run-down:

What is Miso??

Miso is a Japanese paste made from fermented soybeans and barley or rice malt. It’s considered a probiotic because of its live, active cultures, which means it not only tastes delish but is also great for your tummy! If you’ve ever ordered soup as a starter at a sushi restaurant, you’ve most likely already been exposed to the flavor of miso.

What is Furikake??

Furikake is a Japanese seasoning mix made of dried seaweed, dried fish, sesame seeds and other spices. It’s most often sprinkled on top of rice, but I also love adding it to grilled salmon or on top of avocado toast. I’ve even been known to add it to popcorn or high-quality butter from time to time.

Where Do I Buy Miso and Furikake?

Miso has become fairly mainstream, so you should find it at any “health food” store like Sprouts or Whole Foods.

Furikake is not quite so mainstream yet, but the good news is that it’s shelf-stable and lasts a fairly long time, so you can stock up the next time you find yourself at an Asian market or just order yourself some on Amazon [affiliate link].

How to Make Miso Furikake Hummus

When you combine miso and furikake in a creamy dish like hummus, the results are out of this world. The process is pretty easy, too.

Did I mention there are only six ingredients?

Simply add garbanzo beans, miso paste, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil to a food processor or high-powered blender and process until smooth.

Once that’s done, scoop the hummus out into your serving vessel and sprinkle on a generous dose of furikake. Can it get any easier than that?

A bowl of Miso Furikake Hummus nestled into a bamboo steamer surrounded by fresh vegetables.

This Miso Furikake Hummus is best enjoyed within the first day or two of making it, so be sure to have some fresh-cut veggies and taro chips at the ready [affiliate link].

Do you have a favorite recipe featuring miso or furikake? I’d love for you to let me know in the comments below!

Miso Furikake Hummus
Prep Time
10 mins
Total Time
10 mins
 

This Miso Furikake Hummus takes your hummus snack game to the next level. Umami-rich miso takes the place of traditional tahini and furikake - the favorite Japanese seasoning - is sprinkled on top to give your hummus a flavor like you’ve never tasted before.

Course: Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Keyword: appetizer, Asian, furikake, Hawaiian, healthy, hummus, miso, side dish, snack
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 139 kcal
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 tablespoon miso paste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons furikake
  • Fresh vegetables, to serve
  • Taro chips, to serve
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients except furikake, vegetables and chips in a food processor or high-powered blender. Process until smooth with no chunks remaining.

  2. Transfer hummus to serving bowl and top with furikake. Serve with fresh vegetables and taro chips.

Recipe Notes

DISH DENSITY: Low

Festive Guacamole with Cotija and Pomegranate

This Festive Guacamole with Cotija and Pomegranate is just the recipe you need to kick your guacamole up a notch. You’ll never want plain guacamole again!

An overhead shot of Festive Guacamole in a bed of tortilla chips.

Don’t get me wrong – I love me a good traditional guacamole – but when it comes to stepping it up a notch, what better way to do so than with salty, crumbly cotija cheese and tangy pomegranate seeds? (Okay, besides than with kimchi and bacon).

This recipe takes me back to my Napa days, and the one semi-classy Mexican restaurant (now defunct) that we had in our little ol’ town of St. Helena. It was a regular spot for us to take a long work lunch or meet up for an early Happy Hour, and one of the signature dishes was none other than a guacamole sampler, complete with three or so different spins on traditional guacamole. My very favorite spin – that I still think about now, over six years later – was the pomegranate and cotija version. So naturally, I had to try making it myself!

Guacamole is one of those classic party dishes for which you always need to have a good recipe up your sleeve. I’m now in a position where I’ve made it so much that I do it completely off-the-cuff without any sort of reference. BUT, I’ve made an exception for you, and when I whipped up this Festive Guacamole with Cotija and Pomegranate I made sure to write down every portion and ingredient so that you can now have your own go-to guacamole recipe on hand whenever inspiration (or a tailgate, backyard BBQ or 4th of July get-together) comes along.

A wooden mortar filled with Festive Guacamole with Cotija and Pomegranate, surrounded by a platter of tortilla chips.

It is, in most senses, a classic guacamole recipe, it simply gets dressed up with cotija cheese and pomegranate seeds at the very end. Don’t let the simplicity fool you, though, because its flavor meter is through the roof.

Cotija cheese seems to be fairly widely available at grocery stores these days (I found mine at Sprouts), but if you’re having trouble tracking some down, queso fresco would also be a great substitute.

This dish is fantastic as is, but if you’re so inclined you could also add some toasted pepitas at the very end to add a little extra savory crunch. Though it could easily be loaded into tacos, nachos or burritos, I find that Festive Guacamole is best enjoyed simply piled on top of fresh tortilla chips.

An overhead shot of a wooden mortar filled with Festive Guacamole with Cotija and Pomegranate nestled in a bed of tortilla chips.

I hope you’ll give it a try, and let me know how it turns out in the comments!

Festive Guacamole with Cotija and Pomegranate
Prep Time
15 mins
Total Time
15 mins
 

This Festive Guacamole with Cotija and Pomegranate is just the recipe you need to kick your guacamole up a notch. You’ll never want plain guacamole again!

Course: Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: appetizer, guacamole, Mexican, pomegranate, side dish, snack
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 147 kcal
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 1/4 onion, diced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed chopped cilantro
  • 3 medium avocados
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 ounces crumbled cotija cheese
  • 1/3 cup pomegranate arils
Instructions
  1. Combine onion, garlic, jalapeno, cilantro, avocados and lime juice in a medium mixing bowl, using the fork to mash up the avocado as you stir. 

  2. Stir in the salt, add more to taste if necessary.

  3. Scoop guacamole into whatever dish you will be serving it in and top with cotija cheese and pomegranate arils. Serve with tortilla chips.

Recipe Notes

DISH DENSITY: Low

Cheddar and Chive Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo)

These tasty miniature Brazilian cheese breads are packed with cheddar and fresh chives with a wonderfully chewy texture. Pao de queijo is the perfect snack or accompaniment to any meal.

This Cheddar and Chive Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo) is the perfect quick and easy side dish to accompany any meal!

Cheese-lovers, this one’s for you.

I’ll be the first to admit that cheese is one of my favorite food groups, so I’ll take any excuse to come up with recipes that happen to be loaded with it. When I found myself with some extra tapioca flour on hand from last week’s No-Bake Honey Roasted Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars, I decided it was the perfect time to try out a recipe that had been on my mind for at least a couple of years – Brazilian cheese bread!

Believe it or not, I tasted my first pao de queijo in Hawaii at the ever-so-popular KCC Farmer’s Market on Oahu. It was piping hot, wonderfully chewy and oh-so-cheesy. When I learned that it was in fact made with only tapioca flour (making it entirely gluten-free) and still so flavorful, I knew I had to figure out how to make it on my own.

Cheddar and Chive Brazilian Cheese Bread is gluten-free and can be made in under 30 minutes!

Fast forward a couple of years, with a huge bag of tapioca flour just begging to be put to use, I knew it was time. Brazilian cheese bread was happening. But of course I couldn’t make it your typical Brazilian cheese bread, I had to give it my own little twist with sharp aged cheddar cheese and fresh chives. I have to say, the end result was all that I had hoped for…and more. I think it’s safe to say there will be a lot of pao de queijo in my future.

After being so intimidated to even go to the store and buy tapioca flour, I was– as is often the case for me when exploring new recipes and techniques—extremely surprised by how EASY it was to make this cheesy deliciousness. I mean, we’re talking “throw everything in a blender and call it a day” easy.

The end result was these chewy, cheesy, popping bread rolls. They’re not unlike popovers in batter consistency and looks, but when you bite into them you’ll be surprised at the soft yet chewy texture that’s undeniably full of flavor.

Serve this Cheddar and Chive Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo) hot out of the oven with your favorite dinner.

Did I mention they take almost no time to make? The batter comes together in less than five minutes, and they’ll be hot out of the oven in less than 15. And you’ll want to eat these bad boys HOT if you want the ultimate cheesy- and chewy-ness.

In short, Cheddar and Chive Brazilian Cheese Bread is PROBABLY going to become your new go-to side for all of your homemade meals.  Or maybe your favorite after-school snack? Or weekend brunch addition? Whenever you make them, you’re not going to be disappointed!

Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo) has a wonderfully chewy texture, is gluten-free and can be made in under 30 minutes!

Cheddar and Chive Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pao de Queijo)
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
12 mins
Total Time
17 mins
 

These tasty miniature cheese breads are packed with cheddar and fresh chives with a wonderfully chewy texture. Pao de queijo is the perfect snack or accompaniment to any meal.

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Brazilian
Keyword: baking, bread, cheese, gluten-free, side dish
Servings: 24 rolls
Calories: 100 kcal
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup grated white cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups tapioca flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a two-dozen mini muffin tin (see notes for link.)

  2. Combine all ingredients except chives in a blender and blend until smooth. 

  3. Stir in chives.

  4. Pour or scoop batter into prepared muffin tins and bake at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges of the bread are a light golden brown. 

  5. Enjoy warm!

Recipe Notes

Shopping link for miniature muffin tin.