My Favorite Summer Cheese Board: Chickpea Salad Recipe and Sweepstakes!

This post was sponsored by Blue Diamond® Nut-Thins and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

Ready for a summer cheese board? This one is the BEST and is gluten free too! Also, a chickpea salad recipe and a fun #sweepstakes! #ad #NutThinsContest #IC

You know what I love most about a summer party?

If you’re thinking ice cream, that is certainly a big one. I do love a good dessert platter, but ultimately I am all about a cheese board or plate or platter. Whatever you want to call it, it makes me incredibly happy. And now I make my own!

What are my secret ingredients? Cheese, of course, and I use havarti and swiss and colby jack, and pretty much anything. Then I love pepperoni and salami. I pair it all with a chickpea salad (homemade, of course) and some antipasto – store bought or thrown together easily at home with provolone. When you have all that goodness, what’s the most important food pairing? This is an easy question. It’s crackers, of course. And that’s why I’ve found a love with Blue Diamond® Nut-Thins.

They are my go-to snack for the summer, and also for my summer entertaining, with July 4th, Labor Day, and all of our birthdays crammed into two months of parties. They make for a delicious snack that is crunchy and crispy like a potato chip, but sturdy enough for dips and toppings. That’s why it’s perfect for my summer gatherings because I dip them, put cheese and pepperoni on them, or use them as vehicles for antipasto and chickpea salad. This is important for many of my friends that they are wheat & gluten free, and made with real Blue Diamond® Almonds. There are no artificial flavors and there’s a crispy, crunchy texture that is oh so good. I love that there is a wide variety of flavors to try and enjoy as well.

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Homemade Chickpea Salad:

What You Need:

2 cans garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup Edamame
1/2 cup red and green peppers
1/3 cup carrots, diced
2-4 Tbsp dried cranberries
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt & Pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp sunflower or grapeseed oil
1 tsp vinegar
1 tsp sugar
Seasonings – basil, rosemary, thyme, etc.

What You Do:

1 – In a large bowl, combine your garbanzo beans, edamame, peppers, carrots, cranberries, and garlic.

2 – In a smaller bowl, combine the oils and seasonings and whisk until blended

3 – Pour the contents of the smaller bowl over the beans mixture and toss with salt and pepper

4 – Enjoy!

YUM, right? It is one of my favorite recipes. And I love that it goes perfectly with Nut-Thins. They are crispy and sturdy and every flavor holds my salad well, but I think the original flavor is my favorite to pair with it. They all work!

Ready for a summer cheese board? This one is the BEST and is gluten free too! Also, a chickpea salad recipe and a fun #sweepstakes! #ad #NutThinsContest #IC

What’s your favorite item on a cheese board? Other than cheese, of course!

Ready for a summer cheese board? This one is the BEST and is gluten free too! Also, a chickpea salad recipe and a fun #sweepstakes! #ad #NutThinsContest #IC

4th of July Cake in a Jar

This 4th of July Cake in a Jar is fun and Patriotic!! Easy to make ,and kids and adults will love them! Made with pre-made cupcakes, or make from scratch.

Guys, I think I’m experiencing character growth because I’m posting a holiday recipe weeks before the holiday.

Usually I don’t even think of them until the week before and I’ll post something wonderful, like Pound Cake Easter Eggs, but I’ll do it the night before. If I’m feeling generous, two nights before. So then it’s all, “Here’s a fantastic recipe, but the stores are already filled to the brim with holiday shoppers and you’ll never pull this off in time. Good luck!” Yeah, not this time. I’ve got ya. I’m feeling rather generous this Monday because I didn’t have a great weekend, and I’m recovering.

Not even worth a paragraph. Not vague-blogging. We’re all fine. We all like each other. Just not the best time!

This, however, is the best time:

Cake in a jar

There are a few things I love about my cake in a jar recipe, and not just how PRETTY it is. It’s that once you learn how to make cake in a jar, that sort of opens up your repertoire for similar recipes. You can make them for any season in any color. Rainbows! Valentines! Birthdays! Whatever. Mason jar cake recipes are pretty much always timely. Kid parties. Graduations. Whatever. I know you get the point. And I was going to make these for Memorial Day, but couldn’t get my act together.

This 4th of July Cake in a Jar is fun and Patriotic!! Easy to make ,and kids and adults will love them! Made with pre-made cupcakes, or make from scratch.

I often Google easy 4th of July desserts, but I often do that the night before. This way you can be prepared early. And remember, red, white and blue desserts are timely several times a year, AND, you don’t have to save these for red, white and blue. Make them any color and any time! You’ve totally got this. July 4th dessert ideas, usable ANYTIME. And how.

4th of July Cake in a Jar:

Ingredients:

5 Red Cupcakes, unfrosted
5 Blue Cupcakes, unfrosted
4 Glass Jars, approximately ½ pint size
1 Container White Frosting
Red, White, and Blue Sprinkles, assorted

easy 4th of july dessert recipes red white and blue

Instructions:

1 – First crumble up the blue cupcakes into a bowl. Crumble up the red cupcakes and put those in a separate bowl.

2 – Put some of the white frosting into a small piping bag or a small plastic baggie with the corner cut off.

3 – Take a jar and put a layer of blue cake crumbles in the bottom. My layer was about an inch thick.

4 – Take the frosting and pipe a thick line around the edges of the blue cake crumbles. Make sure you are pressing the frosting against the glass edge as you are going around.

5 – Add a layer of the red cake crumbles next – about an inch thick.

6 – Pipe another thick line of frosting around the edges of the red cake, again making sure you are touching the glass.

7 – Add another layer of blue crumbles, then a frosting line, and another layer of red crumbles.

8 – Now pipe a full layer of frosting over the top of the cake so it’s completely covered. You should be right about at the top rim of the jar.

9 – Sprinkle the patriotic sprinkles over the top.

10 – Repeat steps 3-9 for the remaining jars.

*Note: I prepared a white cake mix and divided the batter equally and colored half blue and half red. Bake cupcakes according to the package.

4th of july dessert recipes

fourth of july desserts recipes

easy fourth of july desserts

What do you think of these, as far as 4th of July desserts go? Are you often looking for easy patriotic desserts? Have you ever made cake in a jar? So many probing questions! Ultimately, these are meant to be enjoyed, and I think they rock.

This 4th of July Cake in a Jar is fun and Patriotic!! Easy to make ,and kids and adults will love them! Made with pre-made cupcakes, or make from scratch.

How far in advance would you prefer to read a holiday or seasonal recipe?