Homemade Soft Pretzels

We love making this soft pretzel recipe on weekend afternoons! It's super fun to make, and the pretzels are always chewy, flavorful, and delicious.

If you love fall baking but need a break from pumpkin spice, make homemade soft pretzels! Way back in the early years of Love and Lemons, Jack and I shared a vegan soft pretzel recipe that continues to be one of the most popular recipes on the site. A few weeks ago, when we were in the mood for a fun weekend project, we decided to give the old recipe a go. Our homemade pretzels came out pretty well, but we thought we could make them even better. This soft pretzel recipe is a new and improved version of the…


Jalapeño Poppers

These baked jalapeño poppers are the ultimate game day snack! They're crispy on top, creamy in the middle, and packed with delicious savory flavor.

If anything could turn me into a sports fan, it’d be these baked jalapeño poppers! Like all the best game day snacks (looking at you, salsa and guac), they’re simple, tasty, and really darn fun. The day I took these photos, I planned to eat just one or two jalapeño poppers straight from the oven, to check that the flavors were right. Before I knew it, I’d had 3, 4… I think it’s safe to say that the flavors were a-ok. 🙂 Of course, I couldn’t write a jalapeño poppers recipe without adding a fresh twist. These jalapeño poppers are…


Air Fryer Cauliflower

If you're craving a crunchy, salty, and super fun snack, make this air fryer cauliflower recipe! Smoked paprika and cayenne fill it with bold flavor.

This air fryer cauliflower recipe will make any evening at home more fun! As the seasons change, Jack and I are spending more time inside, which also means we’re watching more movies and TV. Lately, this air fryer cauliflower has been our go-to viewing snack. Health-wise, it’s definitely a cut above the average fries or chips (or fried cauliflower, for that matter), and taste-wise, it’s just as good. A simple panko coating infuses it with smoky, spicy flavor and gives it plenty of crunch. Eat one floret, and you’ll have devoured half a head of cauliflower before you know it!…


Tartar Sauce

Once you learn how to make tartar sauce, you'll never buy it at the store again! This lightened-up version is super creamy, tangy, and delicious.

When I told Jack I was working on a homemade tartar sauce recipe, he replied, “Oh, are you using cream of tartar?” I immediately burst out laughing, but I really can’t blame him for his mistake. I mean, tartar sauce is creamy. It kind of makes sense, right? In reality, the two have nothing to do with one another. Cream of tartar is a powdery baking ingredient that you’d find in sweets like cookies or meringues. Tartar sauce, on the other hand, is super savory, rich, and tangy. It’s typically served with seafood, but trust me – this delicious condiment…


Tomato Basil Soup

Cozy up with a steaming bowl of homemade tomato basil soup! Made with fresh tomatoes and basil, this recipe is easy, nourishing, and delicious.

During the transition from summer to fall, there’s nothing I crave more than this tomato basil soup recipe. Apples and squash are starting to pop up at the farmers market, but you can still find ruby red tomatoes and bunches of basil mixed in among them. I’ll be eating these summer veggies for as long as they’re at the market, even as the temperature starts dropping and I find myself hungry for warming bowls of soup instead of salads. So at this time of year, I start making this tomato basil soup. I roast a market haul of fresh tomatoes…


31 Best Grill Recipes

Celebrate summer with these easy grill recipes! With grilling ideas for starters, sides, main dishes, and more, we've got something for everyone.

It seems like it was just yesterday when Jack and I made our first grill recipes of the summer. Where does the time go? Labor Day might mark the unofficial end of grilling season, but if you’re anything like us, you’ll still grill as much as possible for the next few weeks. It’ll stay warm for another month, right? Right? No matter what, we’re looking forward to making a bunch of grill recipes this weekend, and I hope that you are too. In case you’re in need of some new grilling ideas, I’m sharing over 30 of my best grill…


Homemade Salsa

Break out the tortilla chips! This homemade salsa recipe is zesty, fresh, and super easy to make. Enjoy it as a dip, or pile it onto tacos, nachos, and more.

If I learned one thing from living in Austin, it’s that homemade salsa is infinitely better than any kind you can find in a jar. I loved sampling salsas at restaurants and taco trucks. Each one was different – some were made with roasted ingredients, others got a smoky, spicy kick from dried chiles, and still others were nice and fresh. This variety inspired me to start experimenting with making homemade salsa. I might pull out dried chiles in the winter, when good tomatoes are hard to find, or roast tomatillos if I see them at the farmers market. But…


Cowboy Caviar

This Cowboy Caviar recipe is a great one to have in your back pocket. Enjoy it as a salad for a healthy lunch, or serve it as a dip with lots of tortilla chips!

Have you heard of Cowboy Caviar? I lived in Texas for years, but funnily enough, I only learned about Cowboy Caviar (also known as Texas Caviar) fairly recently. In fact, when Jack walked into the kitchen and asked what I was making last week, he replied, “That doesn’t look like fish eggs!” So, what is Cowboy Caviar, anyway? It’s a zesty, tangy mix of black beans, black-eyed peas, corn, and other fresh veggies. You can enjoy it as a dip with tortilla chips or eat it as a salad. Jack and I have had it both ways this summer, and…


12 Easy Eggplant Recipes

Even eggplant skeptics will fall for these 12 tasty eggplant recipes! With tacos, pasta, salads, and more, they include something for everyone.

Of all the vegetable recipes I post, eggplant recipes are the most divisive. Early on, this surprised me, because eggplant recipes have always been some of my favorite foods to eat. As a kid, I never wanted to stop playing at dinnertime, except when my mom was making eggplant Parmesan. And when I started to explore vegetarian cooking on my own, grilled eggplant was one of the first dishes I mastered. But if I’ve learned one thing through writing Love and Lemons, it’s that not everyone likes eggplant. I’ve heard it called spongy, bitter, and bland, and to that I…


Grilled Eggplant

Lightly charred and full of smoky flavor, grilled eggplant is a delicious side dish. Dress it up with a fresh couscous topping, or enjoy it on its own!

Way back before Love and Lemons began, when I was first learning about seasonal vegetable cooking, grilled eggplant was one of my favorite things to make. Jack and I would visit farms near Austin, where we lived at the time, and come home with armfuls of summer veggies like zucchini and eggplant. We’d get the grill pan nice and hot (this was before we had an outdoor grill), and cook everything until it was tender and perfectly charred. We’d drizzle on a tasty sauce, pass some crusty bread, and call it dinner. So much has changed since then – we…


Grilled Watermelon

This grilled watermelon recipe is such a fun summer side dish! I top each wedge with a tangy, spicy mix of fresh corn, feta, avocado, and basil.

Have you ever grilled watermelon? This summer, I’ve been grilling just about everything that enters my kitchen, and I finally got around to giving grilled watermelon a try. I have to say, I’m hooked! See, I love summer fruit like berries, cherries, peaches, and watermelon, but unlike Jack, who’s happy to eat an entire pint of blueberries in a single sitting, I rarely eat fruit on its own. More often, I use it as a sweet accent in savory dishes, like these summer rolls or this strawberry salad. So for me, grilling watermelon only makes it better. Its sweetness becomes…

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.