Category: Recipes

Chickpea Rotini Pesto Pasta Salad

Chickpea Rotini Pesto Pasta Salad

Disclaimer: This blog post is sponsored by Barilla US. All opinions and recipe are solely mine.


When will this heat let up? Not anytime soon here in California. Usually when the temperatures are scorching I like al fresco dining. Sometimes my family will enjoy dinner in our patio, and other times we will pack up our meal and head out for a picnic in the fresh air.  Doesn’t matter where we decide to eat there is always a salad involved. Lately my go-to meal is a delicious Chickpea Rotini Pesto Salad. I present it as a main meal, and always serve it cold.

I am constantly looking for ways to add more protein and fiber to my salads and have been using @BarillaUS Chickpea Rotini Pasta because it offers just that. Barilla leveraged its more than 140+ years of expertise to create pasta with one simple ingredient – chickpea flour. They offer a delicious taste and always “al dente” texture. Plus it is certified gluten free, and non-GMO Project Verified. Perfect for health- conscious food lovers, like me.


I usually make a batch of Chickpea Rotini Pesto Pasta Salad and keep it in little bowls in the fridge to grab and eat as a mid-day meal or for a quick dinner. Try the recipe and let me know what you think! You can also check out my IG stories to shop for the ingredients.


Ingredients for Barilla Chickpea Rotini Pasta Salad in a Pesto Sauce:

  • 1 box Barilla Chickpea Rotini Pasta (cooked according to box instruction)
  • A jar Barilla Pesto Sauce
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • ½ cup pine nuts
  • 1 cup feta cheese
  • ½ cup olives
  • 1 ½ cup arugula
  • ½ cup red onion


Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Mix until fully combined! I like to sprinkle a little more pine nuts and feta on top, but this of course is optional.


Click here to shop for Barilla Chickpea and Red Lentil Pasta

Tlacoyos de frijol y queso

Tlacoyos de frijol y queso


Tlacoyos de frijol y queso: an oval-shaped Mexican dish of pre- Hispanic origin made of masa, like a long football. They are thicker than fresh corn tortillas. Tlacoyos de frojol are stuffed with cheese and beans before being fried or toasted. They are served as an appetizers for celebrations or main meal. Topped with salsa verde and cotija cheese.

Today, as we kick off Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept. 15th to October 15th I can’t help but to think of all the delicious food Latino Americans make to celebrate our culture and preserve these traditions for our children. Latino food contributions are prevalent everywhere you look here in the United States! The delicious flavors of Real California Hispanic-style cheeses and cremas help elevate meals with quality, authentic ingredients. Let’s face it, we can’t have any type of celebration without QUESO Y CREMA! I always look for the Real California Milk seal, to reassure I’m getting authentic products made with sustainably sourced milk from family farms.

I like to think of food as a social connection, one where we can all agree. Studies show Mexican food as the most beloved cuisine in the country and it makes me happy to connect with people on that level by sharing my Mexican recipes. Recipes my grandparents shared with me that their grandparents shared wth them. Many generations of food knowledge passed down here to the United States to be enjoyed by you and me.


I hope you will jump in the kitchen over the next 30 days in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. Whip up these delicious Tlacoyos de frijol y queso. They are absolutely delicious and tie us both to our roots in Mexico and our feet in America.


Ingredients for Tlacoyos De Frijol Y Queso:

  • 2 cups masa harina corn flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups warm to hot water
  • 1/2 cup refried pinto beans
  • 1 cup Oaxaca cheese, grated
  • green salsa
  • 1/2 cup crumbled cotija cheese
  • 1/2 cup crema con sal


Mix masa harina corn flour, salt and warm water in a bowl until fully combined. Knead for a few minutes until it feels soft and a bit springy. Should not be sticky or dry.

Cover masa with a damp towel and allow to rest for an hour.

Divide masa equally into 8 parts. Roll each piece of masa into a ball. Keep masa balls covered with damp towel while you work.

Preheat comal or griddle over a medium high flame.

Flatten a ball of masa between two pieces on plastic in a tortilla press or between two heavy books to form a circle.

Spread 1 tablespoon of beans on the inside center of the masa then sprinkle 1 tablespoon of grated Oaxaca cheese on top of beans. Fold masa in half to enclose the beans and cheese. Press the outer rim of the masa firmly with your fingers to completely seal. It should look like a folded taco.

Place Tlacoyo back on plastic in the tortilla press and shape each end into a pointy tip. Then slightly press again in tortilla press to flatten a bit, leaving the tlacoyo still a bit thick.

Place the Tlacoyo on the comal and toast for about 3 minutes, then flip it to the other side. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon Oaxaca cheese on the already toasted side and allow it to melt while the other side toasts. Once the cheese is melted flip the melted cheese side directly onto the comal and let it cook until it crisps. I’d say around 3 minutes.

Remove from comal and top with green salsa, 1 tablespoon cotija, and drizzle 1 tablespoon crema con sal.

Repeat until all are made.

Eat immediately.



Visit the RCM website for more amazing recipes using Real California Milk Hispanic Dairy!

Blueberry Oat Cereal Milk Pancakes

Blueberry Oat Cereal Milk Pancakes


It’s finally time to go back to school. After months and month of being together as a family our boy is headed back to in-person class. I find myself excited about our new/old routine and have promised my family to start the day with a delicious breakfast every morning. #MorningsMeanMore these days as a time to be present and connect before the distraction of the day. On special days Blueberry Oat Cereal Milk Pancakes (my son’s favorite) will be my go to breakfast and on the days when time is not on our side I’ll serve the epic combo of #RealCaliforniaMilk and Cereal.

Churro Cup Fried Ice Cream Banana Split

Churro Cup Fried Ice Cream Banana Split


I’m having the most delicious Summer! #SnackHappy vibes all around in this house. I’ve been whipping up Churro Cup Fried Ice Cream Banana Splits in my kitchen to enjoy as a sunset treat. The crispy cinnamon dusted churro is the perfect ice cream bowl for a scoop of vanilla, some banana action, crunchy cornflakes, chocolate syrup, whipped cream and a cherry on top. Okay, so I didn’t actually fry the ice cream, but the corn flake crumbles give it that CRUNCH. The whole bowl is so dreamy… so creamy! I usually ditch the spoon and just eat it with my hand.

Melty Manchego And Membrillo Sticks

Melty Manchego And Membrillo Sticks


It’s time to get back to life, and I’m gonna jump right into SUMMER with zero hesitation. For me and my friends there is nothing better than noshing on little snacks while picnic-ing, and diving deep into conversation sharing our intimate chronicles. Gawd, I’ve missed my bonding time with my pals.

We definitely consider ourselves connoisseurs of the tastiest snacks and anything on a stick is not only welcomed to our chatter huddle picnic but up for dissection. Me knowing this about my buddies encourages my creativity to dream up something special for them. In this case, melty Manchego and Membrillo sticks. I looked for the ‘Real California Milk’ seal when seeking out my Manchego cheese for this creation. I’m a devoted fan of Real California Milk products because they are sustainably sourced and made with milk from California dairy farm families. Yes, I know I’m getting the best and can #SnackHappy !

Grilled Avocado and Mango Salsa

Grilled Avocado and Mango Salsa

This shop has been compensated by Inmar Intelligence and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GrillingWithMazola


We are gradually starting to have very intimate outdoor gatherings and firing up our grill is definitely part of the family plan for Spring/Summer 2021. I choose to use heart healthy Mazola® Corn Oil as a marinade for grilling and as a base for my salsas and ceviche because a clinical study shows it reduces cholesterol 2x more than extra virgin olive oil. If this claim peaks your interest and you want to learn more, visit

Mini Apple Pies

Mini Apple Pies


I usually repurpose one of my senior pie photos on #PiDay because I make pie all year round. I felt this year deserved a brand new photo and something a little fantasy and hopeful. Mini apple pies seem to be a good portrayal of how I’ve been feeling. It’s almost as if I could touch the beginning of Spring and am anticipating some happy changes in the next couple of months. Fingers crossed. To be completely honest, I’ve hit the pandemic fatigue wall and know we are in the final stretch… just gotta hold on tight a little longer.