Make Ahead

How To Make Classic Orange Sherbet — Ice Cream Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

As a kid, orange sherbet was my go-to ice cream order. I wasn't interested in the super-sweet rainbow version — nope, the bracing sweet-tart bite of orange sherbet was the only flavor for me. Once I mastered my favorite grown-up ice cream flavor (coffee), classic sherbet had to be next on the list.

As it turns out, making a really good sherbet at home is a little more complex than making ice cream. With a high water content, homemade sherbet can be icy if not prepared properly. I've discovered how one special ingredient can make all the difference in ensuring your sherbet is just as tangy and creamy as the stuff you ate growing up.

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Recipe: Vanilla Cashew Clusters — Healthy Snack Recipes

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

I am not lying when I tell you I was genuinely sad when I poured out the last cashew cluster from the tall jar I was storing them in. These nuts have a way of working their sweetness into your heart, so it's truly a travesty when they're finished. You might want to make two batches to prolong this. The crunchy clusters are extra fragrant due to the healthy dose of vanilla, and just a touch spicy thanks to the cinnamon. Eat them out of hand whenever the desire for a snack hits, be it at your desk or when you're out and about on an adventure. Then sprinkle the rest on your morning yogurt or even finish off a bowl of ice cream with a handful.

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Recipe: Make-Ahead Chicken and Veggie Chopped Salad — Salad Recipes

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

This is my favorite summer meal prep salad — the kind of thing I crave after a weekend of heavy barbecued foods, cold beers, and rich ice cream. On the tail-end of a quick summer getaway I had an epiphany: This is just the kind of salad to make right after coming home from vacation. The rhythm of preparing everything — from the soothing chop, chop of all the fresh vegetables to the zen whisking of the dressing — gives me my kitchen groove back every time.

If that all sounds a little too frou-frou for you, let me tell it this way: This salad is perfect for meal prepping, as it holds up really well in the fridge. It's got tons of fresh raw vegetables, making it a crunchy delight of flavors and texture, and it will make you feel ready to face the work week post-vacation.

Open up your favorite grocery delivery app and get ready to order all the ingredients so you can make this as soon as you get home.

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Recipe: Summer Vegetables Sub Sandwich with Garlic Cream Cheese — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

You're hitting the road in just under an hour, the bags are packed, the house is tidy, and then you hear it: the hungry gurgle of an empty belly. Not wanting to mess up the kitchen, you reach for a few pantry ingredients and the half a container of cream cheese languishing in the fridge. The goal? Only dirty the dishes you can throw in the dishwasher you'll run before you leave, but also make a tasty sandwich you can eat now or in the car.

Enter: the summer vegetable sub sandwich. Gilded with a flavorful cream cheese and topped with just a handful of fresh vegetables and a few jarred ones, this sandwich is just the sort of thing to fuel your trip. Plus, it travels incredibly well. Here's how to make it without messing up the kitchen.

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Recipe: Trail Mix Cookies — Easy Snack Recipes

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

What's not to love about trail mix? It's equal parts sweet, savory, crunchy, and chewy — a perfect snack no matter what you're craving. Throwing all these elements into a soft oatmeal cookie yields a one-handed treat that's easier to eat than trail mix, yet still offers that same satisfying mix of dried fruit, toasty nuts, sweet chocolate, and yes, even salty bits of crunchy pretzel. Let's just call these little guys trailblazers (pun intended), shall we?

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How To Make Old-Fashioned Date Bars — Baking Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Christine Han)

Date bars have turned my daily dessert world upside down. You see, up until a few weeks ago I had never even heard about date bars, but after the first batch I knew I had found my new favorite, go-to cookie bar. These bars are made with only four major ingredients — dates, oats, butter, and a bit of brown sugar — and come together in about the time it takes the oven to preheat. They happen to be naturally gluten-free and low in added sugar, which means they're the kind of treat that makes a near-perfect after-school snack (but something that pairs deliciously with a bourbon night cap too).

That's not even the best part, though! Biting into these bars is the most delicious adventure in contrasting textures. The top is crisp and buttery with oat crumble, while the date filling is sweet as caramel and just as lush. The same oat mixture that crisps on top becomes chewy and nutty on the bottom of the pan. Personally, I call dibs on the corner pieces, but here's how to make a whole pan of these delicious old-fashioned date bars.

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