Yum!

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    Whether you're entertaining friends and family or just feel like enjoying some good old comfort food this summer, here are some of my absolute favorite recipes that together make up all the courses of the ultimate comfort food dinner

    What's extra special, aside from their taste, is the fact that the side dishes and dessert can be prepared up to a day ahead, and the main course practically takes care of itself in the Crock-Pot. 

    So, go ahead, invite some guests and serve up some flavorful fare!

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    I am NOT a morning person, and neither are two out of the other three people in my house. But even my morning-sunshine daughter is often playing beat-the-clock to get out the door to school or lessons on time. There's little time for a hot, home-cooked breakfast for any of us.

    That's why these breakfast bars, which are packed with wholesome ingredients and delicious accents, are so wonderful! And unlike the ones you buy at the store, you know what goes into them. Parchment paper makes cleanup incredibly easy as well! I plan to make a couple batches before school starts and have them ready for my sleepy-headed crew to grab and go on busy mornings.

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    This time of year, I pretty much refuse to turn on the oven except in very limited circumstances, so grilling is our favorite way to get dinner on the table! My husband is the grill guy, although I am learning. But the one thing we are both terrible at is fish. It sticks, it overcooks, it flakes apart and falls through the grates ... disaster! 

    This recipe finds a creative way around the challenges of fish on the grill; you wrap it in a foil packet with onion and lemon to infuse bright flavors into the rich fish. It turns out moist, perfectly cooked, and delicious. You can adapt this technique for other kinds of fish or for a dinner-size entrée, as well.

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    The cupcake craze may or may not be over, but in my house, they will never go out of style! Cupcakes are our go-to birthday treat at school and, quite often, for our home parties as well. Kids love to help decorate them, and they look just as appealing no matter how unrestrained your little assistants are with sprinkles and toppings.

    Cupcakes just say "fun,” and that's especially true for these extra-cute and festive ones using red and blue sprinkles for a patriotic effect. You could adapt these almost endlessly ... school colors for a graduation party, team colors for a tailgate, or pink and blue for a baby shower.

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    I don't know how to eat a cupcake or a hamburger. I know it sounds crazy, but the truth is, after decades of consuming food, I'm apparently still not a pro.

    How do I know?

    YouTube. They have videos on how to eat (and prepare) everything -- from cupcakes to burgers. And it has shown me (and everyone else) the error of our ways. These amazing hacks on how to eat or cut up food is going to improve our quality of life. Trust me.

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    In the fall and winter, I love puttering around in my kitchen creating a cozy, home-cooked meal. But right now it's summer, and I cannot be bothered. Cannot! It's too beautiful outside, and when I'm not working, I'd rather be out playing. Who's with me? Oh, but we still have to eat.

    Just because I don't want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen doesn't mean I want to feed my family junk, though. So here are a few of my favorite quick, no-work summer recipes.

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    I pride myself on having a fully functioning Mexican kitchen -- being of Mexican decent, I have been cooking authentic food based on my mother's recipes for quite some time. But these recipes can be heavy -- too heavy for the summer months. So, when I saw this recipe, which included butternut squash (or sweet potato), I was super excited to try this new spin on an old favorite. 

    Below you'll find the easy-to-follow recipe so you can try it in your own kitchen:  

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    Cheeseburgers are a huge staple of summer at our house. But after a while, we all get tired of the same old, same old. So, we decided to switch it up a bit with this take on a stuffed burger. If you've never tried one, you're in for a treat! It's all the rage in restaurants around the country and super easy to make at home yourself! Sharp, creamy blue cheese wrapped inside juicy burgers and topped with grilled mushrooms and onions make for a perfect summer dinner.

    Here's how you make these delicious burgers.

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    The best thing about summer is cooking outdoors! In fact, we rarely spend time in our kitchen during the summer months. Who wants to be cooped up when they could be enjoying the nice weather? We love grilling! So when I found this recipe for grilled fruit and veggie kabobs, I was pretty happy. It mixed the sweet and savory flavors of the season while giving my family a healthy helping of nutritious foods.

    Here's how to make them:

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    Nothing says summer like an open fire and sleeping in the great outdoors! Along with those amazing activities is the one we all most look forward to: campfire cooking. Deliciousness, thy name is a foil packet full of meat or dessert, hot off the fire. Yum!

    The beauty of foil packet cooking is that it's incredibly low maintenance and yet wonderfully flavorful ALL at the same time. Plus, super easy cleanup! Why can't we do it year round?

    Here are seven great foil campfire recipes that require just a little bit of prep for a whole lot of yum. See below:

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