Sautéed Asparagus Garlic & Smoked Bacon

Sautéed Asparagus Garlic & Smoked Bacon

This asparagus garlic sauté is an easy, fresh and tender side dish with bacon chopped up and sautéed together creating the perfect combination of deliciousness.

A sautéed dish that is a perfect combination that can enhance any meal.

It makes a great left-over or light lunch side.


Ever Had Asparagus For Breakfast – Well Now You Can – Instant Pot Asparagus & Brussels Sprouts Frittata


Sautéed Asparagus Garlic & Smoked Bacon

Sautéed Asparagus Garlic & Smoked Bacon

8 garlic gloves, remove paper, trim ends and make 3-4 horizontal slices to each clove

4 ounces chopped smoked bacon (about 5-6 strips, also depends in thickness of bacon)

1 pound asparagus, preferably thin spicks, ends trimmed

1/4 cup teriyaki sauce

1/2 teaspoon black sesame seeds, for garnishing, optional

Himalayan salt and black pepper to taste

In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium-low stirring occasionally, until golden-browned, but not crispy, 8 to 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain. Leave bacon fat in skillet.

Next add asparagus to skillet and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until asparagus is crunchy tender, about 10 minutes.


Cook’s Note

As your cooking the asparagus you will want to watch it carefully so it cooks up tender but not overly soft.

Once the asparagus color turns to a deep green that is an indicator it is cooked through and you can remove from the heat.


Remove asparagus from skillet and set aside with bacon.

Add prepared garlic to skillet and sauté until fragrant, about 4-5 minutes.

Next, add bacon and asparagus back to skillet. Add 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce and stir well to combine. Optional to sprinkle black sesame seeds.

Plate and serve as a main dish with Toasted Sourdough Garlic Cheese Bread and a salad. Can also serve as a side dish.

Another asparagus side dish to try is this Roasted Cheesy Asparagus. It pairs well with any protein which includes chicken, pork, beef and fish.


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Maple Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

Maple Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

Caramelized with its natural sugars and maple syrup, this Maple Roasted Brussels sprouts with Bacon gains a nutty flavor from the roasting process.

Thats the best way to prepare Brussels sprouts, that is roasting them. It’s really easy. Just toss the sprouts in some olive oil, with salt and pepper to taste, then spread them on a baking sheet and roast them for 20-30 minutes.

Caramelized Brussels sprouts & Crispy Bacon

The roasting process will bring out all those delicious nutty flavors, rendering the sprouts soft and tender in the middle and leaving the outer leaves super crisp and deliciously yummy.

You could even sprinkle in some chili flakes, oregano, Rosemary or any of your favorite spices for additional flavor.


Cook’s Notes

Lining your baking sheet is a great idea, as there’s a little less clean up.

Keep in mind that while parchment paper creates a great nonstick surface when baking cookies or other sweet treats, but not so great for roasting vegetables.

The parchment actually holds moisture that inhibits the caramelizing of vegetables.

They’ll have a much better chance of crisping up if you place them directly on the metal sheet or even lined with aluminum foil.


Maple Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed, cut in half

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons pure maple syrup

4 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F

Place Brussels sprouts in a medium sized bowl. Add in oil, maple syrup, salt and pepper; toss to coat. Next spread vegetables out over sheet pan. Sprinkle with bacon.

Roast in the preheated oven until bacon is crispy and Brussels sprouts are caramelized, about 20-30 minutes, stirring halfway through.

Plate and serve with your favorite protein.

Now try these Brussels sprouts recipes. All deliciously yummy.


Find more Instant Pot recipes in the Search box below – type Instant Pot in box click Search – Enjoy!


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Cauliflower Rice with Smoked Bacon and Cheddar Cheese

Cauliflower Rice with Smoked Bacon and Cheddar Cheese

A side dish of rice just got a whole lot healthier, yet still just as tasty.

It’s low-carb, and trust us when we say, you won’t miss the alternative.


Talking About AlternativeCheck Out The Alternative Cooking Methods to Frying Food – with recipes.


You can eat it plain, stir-fry with it or like we did, turn it into a main meal by adding smoked bacon and melted cheddar cheese.

What is it? It’s, Cauliflower Rice, yes and it is cooked with Smoked Bacon and Cheddar Cheese.

Did we say this dish is low-carb, keto-friendly and deliciously yummy.

Cauliflower Rice with Smoked Bacon and Cheddar Cheese

1 1/2 pounds cauliflower, cut into florets

1 large orange carrot, diced

1 large stalk celery, diced

5-6 strips thick cut, smoked bacon, cooked and chopped

1 1/2 cup cheddar cheshredded

Cut cauliflower, stems and all into florets. Dice carrots and celery.

Working in batches process prepared vegetables in a food processor until it resembles rice (you don’t want to crowd the food processor). Set a side.

Fry bacon in a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Fry until just crisp. Do not over cook. Remove from heat to a paper towel lined plate. Set aside.

Remove all but 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat from the skillet and increase the heat to medium-high.

Add cauliflower rice and fry for approximately 3 minutes, or just until vegetable rice begins to soften.

Chop or crumble bacon and add to skillet and mix in. Remove skillet from heat.

Top cauliflower bacon mix with cheddar cheese.

Place skillet under broiler on high for about 4-5 minutes or until cheese melts and starts to shimmer. Remove from under broiler.

Cauliflower Rice with Smoked Bacon and Cheddar Cheese

Plate and top with sour cream, green onions and cilantro.

More Cauliflower Recipes


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Instant Pot Chicken with Jalapeño Bacon and Mustard

Instant Pot Spicy Mustard Chicken with Jalapeño Bacon

Mustard is a popular condiment in Asia, the Mediterranean, southeastern and northern Europe, America, and Africa – basically, the whole world enjoys mustard.

It is considered to be one of the most popular and widely used condiments and spices in the world.

Mustard seeds on their own aren’t spicy until water or an acid is added to the crushed seeds.

Grinding the seeds and mixing them into a liquid of your choice helps to release the oils and enzymes that give mustard the bite it has.


Try This Ranch Steak with Maple Honey Mustard Sauce


These liquids can include wine, lemon juice, vinegar or water to bring out their spice flavor.

When mixed with water the spiciness doesn’t last long. Where as with a liquid acid, it maintains the spicy flavor.

Mustard is commonly paired with cheeses and meats since the flavor profile brings out the taste of such ingredients.

Instant Pot Chicken with Jalapeno, Bacon and Mustard

½ cup spicy brown mustard or old style whole grain mustard (your preference)


1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika


¼ teaspoon Himalayan salt


¼ teaspoon black pepper, ground


1 pound chicken thighs (about 3 thighs) skinless, boneless

7 slices smoked bacon, chopped


1/2 yellow onion, sliced


1 jalapeño, seeded, vain removed, sliced

1 cup chicken broth

In a small bowl, combine sauce mixture ingredients.

Use 1/3 of the sauce to coat the chicken thighs. Set aside.

Add bacon, onion and jalapeno to the Instant Pot.

Select the Saute function.

Cook and stir until the bacon gets crispy.

Then use a slotted spoon to remove bacon, onions and jalapenos to a paper towel-lined plate, reserving drippings.

Add broth to the pot and deglaze by using a wooden spoon to scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pot.

Put the chicken into the pot in an even layer.

Close and lock the lid and turn the steam release handle to Sealing.

Pressure cook, High, for 10 minutes

When the time is up, let the pressure naturally release for 5 minutes.

Then quick-release the remaining pressure.

Carefully remove the chicken from the pot to a serving plate.

Add 1/4 cup of the cooking juices and half the cooked bacon to the reserved mustard sauce.

Serve chicken topped with sauce and remaining bacon.


You’ll Love Making This Maple Mustard Chicken Thighs


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Bacon Wrapped Green Beans

Bacon Wrapped Green Beans

Bacon Wrapped Green Beans

A fast and easy to bring together dish of fresh green beans wrapped in smoked bacon and covered in a brown sugar sauce.

This dish is an excellent addition to your dinner table as a side dish.


More Excellent Side Dishes For Your Main Dish Tonight

Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower

Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Cinnamon Butternut Squash with Pecans and Cranberries


When buying fresh green beans they should be firm and should snap when bent in half.

You’ll want to trim both ends off before wrapping them in bacon. You can cut the pods to shorter lengths, as well.

Frozen or canned green beans will not work with this recipe.

French green beans called haricots verts, are a more slender bean pod then regular green beans. But they will work just fine with this recipe.

Bacon Wrapped Green Beans

1 pound green beans, fresh and ends snipped

16 oz. bacon, hardwood smoked with maple flavoring

1 cup brown sugar, packed

½ cup butter (2 sticks), melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Mix brown sugar and melted butter in a small bowl.

Grease a 13 x 9 baking pan.

Cut raw bacon strips in half. Roll 3-4 green beans in bacon. Continue to roll beans until baking dish is full.

Pour brown sugar mixture over wrapped beans. Place in oven 30 minutes or until bacon is done.

Pork Belly Sharp Cheddar Broccoli Bake

Oven baked casserole that is deliciously yummy and the cheesiest smoked pork belly, white sharp cheddar cheese, broccoli, cream cheese and green onions.

This meal is a one dish meal that is easy to bring together all in under an hour.

We searched the internet and found most people making this dish used either velveeta, orange cheddar, or Swiss cheeses.

This recipe uses white sharp cheddar cheese.

Sharp Cheddar is an aged cheese, with a golden color and a piquant taste. Regular mild cheddar has a sweeter flavor.

We’re as the orange cheddar is a variety colored with Annatto seeds.


You like the taste of cooking meat with cheese – than you’ll enjoy this Teriyaki Cheesesteak Sandwich.


Sharp Cheddar The Go To Cheese

Cheddar tends to have a sharp, pungent flavour, often slightly earthy. The “sharpness” of cheddar is associated with the levels of bitter peptides in the cheese.

According to Cheese Pro Club, sharp cheddar is the go to cheese for many when they make a grilled cheese sandwich or a Macaroni and cheese dish.

Sharp Cheddar, inexpensive or not strikes just the right balance between meltability and flavor.

And that is what you want with a dish that is baked with cheese.

You often do get some pooling of fat when you add cheddar to the top of a dish.

If this happens just enjoy the flavor, or you could gently lie a paper towel over the top to soak it up.

Other cheese that would make this dish stand out in flavor could include, Asiago, Canadian Cheddar, or Manchego.


Enjoy reading more about the Top Nine Varieties Of Cheese’s Enjoyed By Food Lovers


Pork Belly Sharp Cheddar Broccoli Bake

8 thick slices pork belly bacon, smoked

1/4 cup butter

1/3 cup flour

8 oz cream cheese, soft, room temperature

2 cups milk

1 tsp salt

1 tsp fresh ground black pepper

1/2 tsp paprika

1 1/2 cup grated white sharp cheddar cheese

10 green onions , sliced

4 cups broccoli, cut into medium sized florets

Preheat oven to 350F.

Cook the bacon until crispy. Drain and then crumble. Set aside.

Steam the broccoli until almost tender. They should seem a little undercooked.

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Add the flour and stir until thoroughly mixed. Add in the cream cheese and stir until melted.

Add the milk and spices. Stir until well heated but do not bring to a boil as that might scald the milk.

Stir in 1 cup of the grated cheese and remove from the heat.

Dump the broccoli in a 13×9 baking dish. Pour the cheese mixture over the broccoli. (Optional to sprinkle some bacon pieces and sliced green onions).

Gently fold so that the broccoli is coated in the cheese mixture and the bacon and green onions are mixed throughout.

Evenly spread the broccoli in the baking sheet. Sprinkle remaining cheddar cheese, bacon and green onions on top.

Bake for about 20 minutes or until bubbly and the cheese is melted.

You’ll also enjoy the baked dish without meat but with the addition of cauliflower – Broccoli & Cauliflower Cheddar Cheese Casserole.


Bacon and Spring Pea Risotto

Risotto is a dish that is creamy, scrumptious and filling.

The beauty of preparing risotto is that you can add just about anything you’d like.

You can use various types of vegetables, herbs, and meat. You can make with or without meat.

Risotto is a comfort food, as it is filling, and is a wonderful dish for leftovers.

Risotto can be a side dish (without meat) but it is also often consumed as a complete meal (when prepared with meat).


Pumpkin Pecan Risotto with Dried Cranberries and Goat Cheese


Unlike other rice that is left in a pot of water to boil, risotto rice requires constant attention to ensure a perfectly finished dish.

The rice is not to be pre-rinsed, boiled, or drained, as washing would remove much of the starch required for a creamy texture.

When Arborio rice is cooked slowly with stock (usually chicken or vegetable stock) it allows the amylopectin starch to be released.

As a result, the rice takes on a smooth, creamy texture.

A 1/3 cup of uncooked Arborio rice (used in preparing risotto) has about 166 calories.

Bacon and Spring Pea Risotto

4 pieces bacon

1/2 yellow onion, diced

2 cups arborio rice

4 cups chicken stock, hot

1 cup frozen peas and carrots

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

Zest of 1 lemon

Salt and pepper to taste

Cut bacon into small bite-sized pieces. Add to a large, deep, skillet and cook until crispy. Remove from pan to cool.

Drain most of the bacon grease, leaving about 1 Tbsp. in the pan. Add diced onions and cook on low heat until translucent.

Turn heat to medium and add uncooked rice to the pan. Stir to coat in bacon grease.

Add 1 cup hot chicken stock, reduce heat to low and stir while rice absorbs the liquid. Once it’s absorbed, add another 1 cup and repeat until all the liquid is gone and rice is tender.

This process should take about 20 minutes.

Next, add to tender rice frozen peas and carrots, lemon zest, cilantro and bacon. Mix in well.

Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve warm.

How To Spice Things Up When Cooking

Large collection of metal bowls full of herbs and spices -How To Spice Things Up When CookingHerbs and spices are used to enhance the flavor of food, either it be for cooking Spaghetti Carbonara or baking an apple pie.

An herb or spice can be a seed, fruit, root, bark, berry, bud or leafy part of the plant. They are principally used for flavoring food among other uses. They can be used fresh or dried.

Herbs And Spices Through The Ages

It is said that by the Middle Ages, the most common spices and herbs being traded and used were black pepper, cinnamon (including the alternative cassia), cumin, nutmeg, ginger and cloves.

Herbs and spices are useful for many things, among others are medicinal uses, cosmetic or perfume production uses, and of course they are used add flavor to a meal.

By 1000 B.C. medical systems based upon herbs were found in China, Korea, and India. Also the Egyptians used herbs and spices for their embalming practices and their demand for exotic herbs and spices helped stimulate world trade.

Extracting A Spices Flavor

The flavor of an herb or spice is derived by exposing the volatile oil compounds of the seed or leafy part, that oxidize or evaporate when it comes in contact with air.

As an example, fresh ginger is usually more flavorful than its dried form, but fresh spices are more expensive and have a much shorter shelf life.

Flavor of herbs and spices can be maximized by storing them whole and grinding when needed, as grinding greatly increases its surface area and so increases the rates of oxidation and evaporation.

If you decide to use dried spices, be sure to use them within 6 to 8 months of purchase. Ground spices are better stored away from light, as it also increases the oxidation of the volatile oils.

metal bowls filled with spices

How To Use Herbs And Spices

When using herbs and spices you’ll want to pick flavors that complement each other, such as the spice mix known as “pumpkin pie spice.”

The ratios of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg add great flavor to the pie, and each spice doesn’t over power the other.

The key or rule of thumb to spicing things up is that less is more. Avoid adding too much all at once. Instead, add a little at a time and add more to taste.

A good example of over spicing and unable to fix it, is when you use oregano or cloves. Their volital oils are great for flavoring culinary and pastry dishes, but they are strong in flavor, and only require a small amount.

When using spices to flavor your meat or vegetables, use only 3 different types at a time.

You can even use herbs and spice to replace salt. Choose your spice or spices, add a little lemon juice and unsalted butter.

Which spices pair well together for the best culinary dishes you can make?

Let’s examine some of the most commonly used spices and which spices pair well with them.

Enjoy Warm and Tasty Winter Vegetables

Enjoy Warm and Tasty Winter Vegetables

Just because the weather is cold shouldn’t keep you from enjoying in season fresh produce. Nature gives us a collection of its best winter vegetables that have proven to be flavorful. Winter root vegetables can contribute an interdependent, sweet flavor to a hearty winter soup recipe, like carrots, or sweet potatoes.

Roasting most winter vegetables brings out their best flavors. Even using complementary herbs and spices helps add some extra exceptional tastes.

Available In Season Winter Vegetables

Brussels sproutsAlthough Brussels sprouts are available year-round, their peak season is from September to February.

When looking to purchase them, remember to look for small firm sprouts with compact bright-green heads, and the smaller the head the sweeter the taste. Roasting Brussels sprouts lightly caramelizes their edges but keeps them tender inside.

To view a few recipes using Brussels sprouts one of the following links:

Roasted Root Vegetables with Brussels sprouts and Bacon 

Warm Brussels sprouts and Dilled Potato Salad 

Brown Butter and Brussels Sprout with Fennel

At All Recipes (allrecipes.com) they call Broccoli the star vegetable in stir-fries, soups, salads, and casseroles.

Broccoli can be purchased year round. But when in season, as a winter vegetable when roasted retains its entire flavor and even gains deliciously crisp bits when.

preparing broccoli to eatWhen asked the question – How Do You Describe Broccoli? – to a community of online people at answers.com, one member answered saying, “Broccoli is good chopped into small pieces or cut into larger piece and cooked until tender.

It’s delicious to eat as it is when cooked naturally and also in recipes.

The popular dish, broccoli and cheese is made with cooked, tender broccoli before draining and stirring in cheese until it melts and mixes in with the broccoli.

You can also make cheese sauces, which you serve, poured over the broccoli on a plate.

Either way it is cooked or served, broccoli is a favorite among vegetables and nutritionally powerful” (Answers).

To view a recipe using broccoli click here: Baked Garlic and Broccoli

The Sweet Potato is a dicotyledonous plant that belongs to the Convolvulaceae family.

This species of plants are known commonly as the bindweed or morning glory family, which has more than 1,650 species of mostly herbaceous vines, but also trees, shrubs and herbs.

Stuffed Sweet Potato with Chipotle Black Bean and Corn SaladStuffed Sweet Potato with Chipotle Black Bean and Corn Salad

The sweet potato is a starchy, sweet-tasting, tuberous root. There are about 1,000 species of sweet potatoes, with some varieties sold at market for food, while others are not for consumption, as they are poisonous.

The sweet potato is only distantly related to the common potato, though it is not part the nightshade family.

The website – “The Worlds Healthiest Foods” – has this to say about sweet potatoes when preparing to eat them, “It can be helpful to include some fat in your sweet potato-containing meals if you want to enjoy the full beta-carotene benefits of this root vegetable.

Recent research has shown that a minimum of 3-5 grams of fat per meal significantly increases our uptake of beta-carotene from sweet potatoes. Of course, this minimal amount of fat can be very easy to include.

In our Healthy Mashed Sweet Potatoes recipe, for example, we include 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, and with just this one tablespoon, each of our 4 servings for this delicious recipe provides 3.5 grams of fat (whfoods).

To view a few recipes using sweet potatoes click one of the following links:

Sweet Potato Pilaf with Cranberries and Pecans

Southwestern Black Bean and Sweet Potato Soup

Baked Beets and Sweet Potato Chips

KaleKale is considered to be the most robust of the cabbage family. Its high nutritional worth and intense flavor make kale an exceptional addition too many vegetable recipes.

At Mind Body Green, Alison Lewis makes note of kale as “the new beef,” “the queen of greens,” and “a nutritional powerhouse”(MBG).

To view a few recipes using kale click one of the following links:

Red Kale Cannellini Beans and Chorizo Soup

Moroccan Three Bean and Kale Soup

Red Kale Beets and Sweet Cilantro Vinaigrette

Leeks are winter root vegetable that looks much similar to onions, and to which they are also related. Their flavor is onion-like but much milder, mellower, and not overpowering, as onions sometimes can be.

The darker green parts have plenty of flavor. They can either be cooked longer then the root parts to tenderize them, or used when making homemade soup stock, like chicken broth base soup along with potatoes, carrots, and herbs.

They can also be eaten raw or joined with a salad of leafy greens to divulge a wonderful crisp crunchy flavor.

Link here for a recipe using leeks: Endive and Fruit Salad with Chicken –  includes a video

Turnips are a a round, light-colored root related to the mustard family. Though the vegetable is grown for its eatable root, the top green parts are also enjoyed in salads.

Turnip greens are a common side dish in southeastern U.S. cooking, primarily during late fall and winter months.

Smaller leaves are preferred when boiling them in water, as the larger the leaf the stronger the flavor.

However, if you find yourself cooking with larger turnip greens, any bitter taste can be reduced by pouring off the water from initial boiling and replacing it with fresh water.

The natural sweetness of Parsnips comes alive when they’re roasted and caramelized.

The addition of fresh rosemary, balsamic vinegar, and brown sugar makes a sweet, aromatic glaze.

Roasted parsnips make a great side dish for pork tenderloin.

Link here for a recipe using parsnips :  Roasted Root Vegetables with Brussels sprouts and Bacon

Belgian EndiveThe genuine Belgian endive is deeply rooted in its country of origin – Belgian, were it was discovered in 1830.

This compact white colored small cylindrical shaped leaf vegetable with light green tips is a tangy, but tender and delicious vegetable.

Some cooks add the leafy vegetable to soups, while others use it in salads.

Link here for more about endives discovery and for a recipe: Endive and Fruit Salad with Chicken –  includes a video

Other winter vegetables that can still be found in your local market are…

Buttercup Squash – Collard Greens – Delicata Squash – Sweet Dumpling Squash – Winter Squash

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Asparagus and Bacon Cream Pasta

Asparagus and Bacon Cream PastaAccording to Food History asparagus has a long history as far back as the first century. There are records of it growing in ancient Greece and Rome. History even records Egyptians over 2,000 years ago cultivated asparagus for medicinal reasons (Kitchen Project)

Of course most eatable plants were first discovered growing wild, and asparagus is no exception. A wild asparagus has thin shoots thinner than a pencil and is much different than the asparagus that we find in the market.

Nutrition facts asparagusThrough selective breeding and growing techniques, a modern non wild asparagus has a thicker stem with more edible flesh.

Asparagus is even a low carbohydrate food, and a 15 on the glycemic index, which is the rating of plant food and how it effects your blood glucose or insulin in the body (0-35 is low).

Now for our featured recipe, and here is what you will need.

 

8 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped

1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1″ pieces

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 lb pasta (your choice)

2 cups Alfredo sauce (homemade or your favorite store bought brand)

Himalayan salt

black pepper

Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water before draining. Return the pasta to the pan that you cooked it in, and set aside.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the bacon until browned, but not crispy. Remove and place on paper towel lined plate to drain.

Remove all but 2 tablespoons of grease from the skillet, and return to the stove. Add the chopped asparagus to the pan, stirring occasionally. Cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic to the skillet, and cook for 1 minute more.

Add the cooked asparagus, garlic, bacon, and Alfredo sauce to the pot of cooked pasta. Toss to combine. If the sauce is too thick, add a bit of the saved pasta water to thin it out. Season to taste with Himalayan salt and pepper before serving (optional).

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