New Year, New Recipes

We are into a New Year – 2012. Can you believe it? And now that many have over-indulged during the holiday season, and our pants are a little bit tighter, planning to serve healthier, homemade meals is at the top of the “TO-DO” list. Whether you’re a busy mom already, or are expecting a baby soon, the goal is to find meals that are healthy, yes, but don’t take hours to prepare. Something that is easy enough that we’ll forgo fast food for the healthier choice … but where do we get the inspiration we need to cook?

If you’re like me, sometimes you need a fresh perspective, someone to put everything together in one perfect dish.  I love being able to sit on the couch with my laptop, with a snack in-hand of course, and start searching for delicious dinner ideas. There’s nothing like pictures of food to get the digestive juices flowing. Where can I find these dinner delights, you may be asking yourself?

Here are a few websites that are full of options and easy to browse: – I know for certain that the most difficult part of babysitting my 4-year old niece is finding something she’ll eat. Sure, sure, french fries are her number one fail-safe, but what about something nutritious? When I have the strength not to give in to the fried potato, an awesome helper is’s “50 Best Recipes for Kids” selection. Here you’ll even find some allergen-free options. Of course, be sure to take a close look at all the ingredients in any recipe if allergies are on the table … no pun intended. – Right away you’ll notice the main “toolbar” across the top of the page. This site is such a great resource because it includes tabs like Recipes and Menus. Here you can browse by cuisine, such as Italian and Spanish. Under the Recipes tab, you can search by main ingredient: Beef, Pork, Pasta, and Vegetarian. For some of the special features, you need to set up an account and pay a small fee, but overall it’s a great go-to. – This may be immediately more familiar to many moms because the recipes here are created by cooks and chiefs that are on – you guessed it – The Food Network. Even if you don’t have cable, you’ve no doubt heard of Rachael Ray and Guy Fieri, and this website provides all the recipes showcased on their programs, not to mention countless other talented chefs. Oh, by the way … all the recipes on this site are FREE! Who doesn’t like free?

Crock-Pot.Com – Of course, there are those days when no one can tempt us to pick up a spatula and skillet. Why not set up the slow cooker to do the work for you? In the cold winter weather, our tummies plead for warm, savory soup or stew, and they can be very easy to prepare. Simply select the course or ingredient you’ve got a taste for and voila!  Try recipes like Creamy Corn Bisque with Spicy Red Pepper Cream or the simpler Cream of Tomato Soup. Don’t those sound simply decadent? Maybe we can even get our hubbies to set up the slow-cooker for us!

You never know, sites like these might produce such a love for cooking that you’ll be submitting your own recipes.

Where do you go for your recipes? Share with us your favorites for the winter time that you plan to start the New Year with. Bon Appétit!