Monday, June 30, 2014

Cascade Brewing | Portland, Oregon

On one of our last days in Portland, Oregon, we stopped in at Cascade Brewing Barrel House for some beers and a snack. (Clearly, we made our rounds when it came to Portland breweries).

If you enjoy sour beer, Cascade Brewing is the place to go when you're in Portland.

Cascade Brewing in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

They've termed their Barrel House the "House of Sour," where 18 rotating taps are available for your sipping pleasure - the majority of them being sour beers.

Cascade Brewing in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Cascade Brewing's beers are so good that they even have a 100% score on Beer Advocate right now - an extremely rare score to achieve. 

In addition to their solid brews, Cascade Brewing Barrel House also offers a simple yet impressive menu (with recommended beer pairings to boot). We weren't super hungry when we were there, but we did manage to eat every last crumb of the Artisanal Cheese Platter ($14).

Artisanal Cheese Plate from Cascade Brewing | The Economical Eater

Piled high with local and imported cheeses, this was one of the more outstanding cheese plates I've had in a long time. I loved the accompanying baguette slices and large, thin crackers, as well as the medley of pickled vegetables. The slices of fresh watermelon also added a necessary sweet bite to the mix. 

Cascade Brewing also has a second location in Portland called the Raccoon Lodge & Brew Pub. We didn't visit that location, but if it's anything like the Barrel House, you won't be disappointed.

Are you a fan of sour beers? 

Cascade Brewing Barrel House on Urbanspoon

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Nutella, Banana, and Peanut Butter Smoothie

I was a sick child. My favorite lunch to have before going to afternoon kindergarten (and while watching "The Elephant Show," of course) was potato chips dipped in peanut butter. Don't ask.

To this day, my love for peanut butter (and potato chips) hasn't waned...I just choose to eat them separately now. With that being said, though, I could pretty much eat peanut butter with anything else - although bananas and/or Nutella tend to be great peanut butter companions.

And now that summer's [finally!] here in Boston - which means, it's hot and humid here in Boston - I'm always looking for cool and satisfying snacks and meals to eat. And why not make a cool and satisfying snack that's filled with three of my favorite things?

Nutella, Banana, and Peanut Butter Smoothie | The Economical Eater

Nutella, Banana, and Peanut Butter Smoothie
Yields: 1 serving
-1 ripe banana, peeled
-1 heaping tablespoon peanut butter (crunchy or creamy)
-1/2 tablespoon Nutella
-1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
-2-3 ice cubes

1.) Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Seriously...that's it.

Nutella, Banana, and Peanut Butter Smoothie | The Economical Eater

Cold, creamy, sweet, and nutty, this smoothie was super tasty, and satiating to boot. The protein from the peanut butter helped pack some staying power, while the nutty and sweet flavors from the Nutella and vanilla almond milk made every sip extra delicious. And the banana? Besides providing some nutrients to the mix, it also made the texture wonderfully thick and creamy.

If you're looking to keep things vegan, swap out the Nutella for cocoa powder.

For the Nutella lovers, I suggest washing down this mostly healthy smoothie with something not quite as healthy - like my Nutella Cream Cheese Chocolate Chunk Brownies or Nutella and Banana Turnovers with Sea Salt.

Do you love peanut butter [and/or Nutella] as much as I do? 

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Deschutes Brewery | Portland, Oregon

If you find yourself in Portland craving really good beer and pub food, then get yourself to Deschutes Brewery.

Deschutes Brewery in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Deschutes Brewery in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Deschutes is a large space with a big open bar area, as well as a separate dining room area. The large open kitchen lets you peek at what's being prepared "backstage," which is something I always appreciate. 

We stopped into Deschutes for lunch on our first full day in Portland and, since we were on vacation (and at a brewery), we started with a beer. The first beer we had was actually from their bottle list: a 22-ounce bottle of Planete Rouge ($22). (In addition to bottles, Deschutes also has 19 beers on tap featuring mainstays as well as a selection of seasonal and experimental beers developed and brewed right on-site).

To pair with their beer, Deschutes serves up an impressive offering of pub-style food. We wanted to have a lighter lunch, so we opted to split a few dishes. First up: a Brewery Pretzel ($7.75).

Pretzel from Deschutes Brewery in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

The pretzel was served with a creamy white cheese and Black Butte Porter stone ground mustard. Although this was a delicious combination all on its own, we also found ourselves dunking our pretzels in the honey mustard-like sauce that was on every table.

Deschutes Brewery in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

The backside of Deschute's beer menu also displays some affordable snacks that are meant to pair well with beer. We were intrigued by the Deviled Eggs ($1.50 for one egg), which were sprinkled with smoked black salt and had beer in the yolk mixture.

Deviled Eggs from Deschutes Brewery in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Z and I are both big fans of deviled eggs, and we absolutely loved these. The menu was right, too: they paired very well with beer, especially a 22-ounce bottle of Big Red ($15), which is only available at the brewery.

Deschutes Brewery in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

One of the specials on the day we went was a Ruby Ale Salad ($11), which consisted of ruby greens, grilled corn, roasted red peppers, chile roasted cashews, and Raschera cheese, all coated with a fresh-squeezed ale and pink grapefruit vinaigrette. I didn't snap a photo, but the salad was OK - nothing too special, although I loved the addition of cashews and Raschera cheese.

Deschutes also does growler fills and sells kegs to-go, for anyone who's interested. And if you have the time to stay and have a beer - whether from one of their pub-only bottles or on draft - I highly recommend it.

Deschutes Brewery & Public House on Urbanspoon

Monday, June 23, 2014

Grilled Maple Brussels Sprouts Slaw

I usually despise coleslaw. Typically, it's nothing but an under-seasoned side dish consisting of cabbage drenched in mayonnaise.

But I know coleslaw can be good, when it's prepared well. And I also know coleslaw doesn't have to consist of cabbage and mayonnaise at all. It can also be made with other crunchy vegetables, like Brussels sprouts - cabbage's smaller, tastier friend.

Grilled Maple Brussels Sprouts | The Economical Eater

We had a bunch of leftover grilled Brussels sprouts last week that I decided to turn into this vegan-friendly, healthier coleslaw. To grill the sprouts, we simply dressed them in some olive oil and seasoned them with salt and pepper, then put them right on the grill. We cooked them until they were browned on both sides - then, as soon as they came off the grill, I drizzled them with some good maple syrup. (You can easily use this same method by roasting the sprouts, if you don't have a grill). The end result were smoky and sweet sprouts that were delicious as a side on their own...but they tasted even better the next day in this slaw.

Grilled Maple Brussels Sprouts Slaw | The Economical Eater

Grilled Maple Brussels Sprouts Slaw
Yields: 2-3 servings
-1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
-1 teaspoon maple syrup
-Squirt of lemon juice
-1/2 teaspoon olive oil
-Salt and black pepper, to taste
-1 cup shredded Brussels sprouts
-1 heaping tablespoon dried cranberries
-1 teaspoon sunflower seeds

1.) In a small bowl, whisk together mustard, maple syrup, and lemon juice. Continue whisking while you slowly pour in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
2.) Place Brussels sprouts, cranberries, and sunflower seeds in a medium bowl. Pour in dressing, and toss to coat. Serve immediately, or, better yet, let slaw sit in the fridge for 15-20 minutes before serving.

[Print this recipe]

Grilled Maple Brussels Sprouts Slaw | The Economical Eater

This slaw would make a great side dish for a barbecue, especially if you have some vegans in attendance. I loved how the Brussels sprouts maintained their crunch, while the chewy cranberries and the crunchy sunflower seeds provided some additional textures and flavors. The dressing was also delightfully light and flavorful, and didn't drown the rest of the ingredients. (Sorry, mayonnaise).

What's your favorite side dish at a barbecue? 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Bad Habit Room and Saraveza | Portland, Oregon

When a weekend-only brunch spot is attached to a craft beer bar and bottle shop, you know you're in for a treat.

A slew of people recommended Saraveza Bottle Shop and Pasty Tavern to Z and I before we left for Portland, and it's clear to see why. This place has an impressive rotating draft collection, as well as bottles to-go, and on the Sunday we were there, Firestone Walker was in attendance to pour some rare brews. Before we dipped into the beer, however, we decided to have brunch at Saraveza's next door brunch spot (and event space), called the Bad Habit Room.

The Bad Habit Room offers brunch every weekend from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Chef Matthew Simons mans the kitchen. The small restaurant - which features several family-style and smaller tables amidst exposed brick walls - features Saraveza meats, Red E Coffee (so good), and Sugar Pimp baked goods. For those who like to imbibe at brunch, they also had some great-looking cocktails on their menu.

Our brunch began with piping hot mugs of Red E Coffee, which we ended up buying a bag of before heading home. (Red E's located right behind the Bad Habit Room).

Bad Habit Room in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Since we were on vacation, we decided to treat ourselves to one two of Bad Habit's made-from-scratch Pop Tarts. (I didn't mark down any prices - sorry!).

Pop Tart from Bad Habit Room in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Pop Tart from Bad Habit Room in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

These Pop Tarts were incredible. Filled with blackberry (or blueberry?) and raspberry filling, these tasted just like regular Pop Tarts - but without all of the scary ingredients. Let's just say I'm so glad Z convinced me to order two, versus share one!

For our entrees, we both went with the Breakfast Burrito

Breakfast Burrito from Bad Habit Room in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Stuffed with pinto beans, scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese, caramelized onions, avocado, and fresh pico de gallo, this made for one hearty breakfast. 

Breakfast Burrito from Bad Habit Room in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Our burritos came with a side of chipotle cream which was fabulous with the crispy, well-seasoned potatoes. The lemony arugula salad on the side was a welcome addition to the plate, and Bad Habit's hot sauce was a fabulous addition to our burritos.

Bad Habit Room in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

After our delicious and indulgent brunch, we walked next door to Saraveza and had a glass (or two) of Firestone Walker's brews. We sat outside at one of Saraveza's few picnic tables and sipped under the sunshine. (That is, until it began to rain...something you get used to in Portland!).

Saraveza in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

What's your favorite brunch dish? Breakfast burritos are a favorite of mine, but I also love a good egg sandwich on a bagel. 

Saraveza on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Portobello | Portland, Oregon

Hello! Z and I just returned from a fantastic trip to Portland, Oregon, complete with lots of craft beer and delicious food. We ended up renting bikes for the four days we were there (from Cycle Portland), and riding those ended up being a great way to get around the city. (They also helped to burn off all most of the calories we were consuming!).

I realized on our trip that Portland is one of the only cities (that I've been to, at least) where you can consume Cheez Whiz and beet tartare in the same day. The Beet Tartare ($9) we had at Portobello Vegan Trattoria...the Cheez Whiz I'll explain in a future post.

Beet Tartare from Portobello in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

Portobello is an intimate, elegant-yet-casual restaurant that serves innovative vegan dishes (it actually reminded me a lot of True Bistro in Somerville). Z and I opted to sit at the small, cozy bar on this particular evening, and we just had to start our meal with the Beet Tartare. This vibrant dish consisted of diced, roasted beets with carrot aioli, fines herbes, and capers atop a cashew puree - all served with a ton of crusty bread to spread it on. 

The Beet Tartare was incredibly fresh and borderline rich thanks to the cashew cream. I loved the salty capers in each bite, too.

Portobello offers a variety of pizzas, burgers, pasta dishes, and salads, but I opted for the Beet Burger Royale ($14). I must have been on a beet kick that night.

Beet Burger Royale from Portobello in Portland, OR | The Economical Eater

The Beet Burger Royale is a homemade beet burger topped with cashew cheddar, caramelized onions, smoked portobello, carrot aioli, ketchup, lettuce, red onion, and tomato on a focaccia bun. The restaurant was out of cashew cream when we went, so I opted for the Vtopian Peppercorn Cashew Brie instead. This was a massive burger that was slightly hard to eat thanks to the beet patty's enormous size, but the flavors were still spot-on - and I [surprisingly] loved the vegan Brie cheese. (You honestly wouldn't be able to tell that it was vegan!). The accompanying fries were also well-seasoned and delightfully crispy. 

Although I didn't snap a photo, Z ended up ordering the Mushroom Cavatelli ($18) for his meal, which was comprised of housemade cavatelli, roasted leeks, mushrooms, fines herbes, and porcini truffle "butter." It was divine, and [almost] made me wish I had ordered a pasta dish.

All in all, we had a fabulous meal at Portobello, and I highly recommend checking them out if you find yourself in Portland. Although it's a vegan restaurant, there are a ton of creative and well-done dishes here that I think any omnivore would enjoy. (It also doesn't hurt that Portobello is right across the street from Apex, a fun craft beer bar with 50 beers on tap and tons of outdoor seating).

Have you ever been to an all-vegan restaurant before?

Portobello Vegan Trattoria on Urbanspoon

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Chickpea, Mint, and Feta Burgers with Yogurt-Dill Sauce

Just checking in with a quick, tasty new burger recipe before Z and I jet off to Portland, Oregon for a few days!

The burgers and the yogurt-dill sauce in this recipe both use herbs we're growing right in our backyard. (Well, I accidentally planted "dill bouquet," but it still works). In addition to the dill, the burgers possess fresh, fragrant mint that helps complement the aromatic spices and the creamy feta. These burgers were quite a hit with Z, and I know they'll be a hit with your family, too!

Chickpea, Mint, and Feta Burgers with Yogurt-Dill Sauce | The Economical Eater

Chickpea, Mint, and Feta Burgers with Yogurt-Dill Sauce
Yields: 4 burgers
-1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
-1/2 small yellow onion, minced
-1/4 cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves
-1 clove garlic, minced
-1 teaspoon ground cumin
-1/2 teaspoon paprika
-Salt and black pepper, to taste
-1/8 cup yellow corn meal (or plain bread crumbs)
-3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
-1/4 cup crumbled feta
-4 burger buns
-Sliced cucumber (optional)

Yogurt-Dill Sauce:
-1 5.3-ounce container plain Greek yogurt (I used Chobani)
-1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
-Squirt of lemon juice
-Salt and black pepper, to taste

1.) Place the chickpeas, onion, mint, and garlic in a food processor that's fitted with a steel blade. Pulse until combined and texture is mostly smooth, but still slightly chunky. (If you don't have a food processor, just mash the chickpeas with a fork and just be sure the mint is chopped).
2.) Spoon the chickpea mixture into a medium bowl and add spices, corn meal, and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Stir until combined, then taste for seasoning and adjust as necessary. Add feta and carefully stir to combine.
3.) Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. As oil is warming up, form the chickpea mixture into four equal-sized patties. Place patties in the pan and cook for about 5 minutes, or until golden brown. Carefully flip burgers and cook on the opposite side until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes. 
4.) Serve with generous slathers of yogurt-dill sauce and sliced cucumber.

Yogurt-Dill Sauce:
1.) In a small bowl, combine ingredients. Let chill in fridge for 30 minutes before serving.

I loved how the cooling mint and the creamy yogurt-dill sauce complemented the smoky cumin and paprika. These burgers really tasted like summer, and I loved how some of the ingredients came right from our own backyard!

If you have several cans of chickpeas on-hand, I also recommend trying my Chickpea Burgers with Vegan Cilantro Mayonnaise.

Have you ever been to Portland, Oregon before? Any suggestions for where we should go?

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Almost Summer Corn Soup

One of my favorite things to do as a kid (in the summer) was sit on the back deck with my siblings and shuck fresh ears of corn. Having fresh corn was always a treat, and we usually ate cobs slathered in butter alongside fresh lobster (also slathered in butter) or burgers and dogs on the grill. Those are some of my favorite childhood memories, and every time I shuck a fresh ear of corn today, I'm brought back to those blissful summer days.

We ended up with a ton of leftover corn from the Union Square Farmers' Market several weekends ago, and I dreaded it going to waste. In an effort to make use of it all, I threw together this corn soup - complete with a homemade, silky corn stock.

Almost Summer Corn Soup | The Economical Eater

This soup definitely had me reminiscing about my childhood days in the backyard. It also had me that much more excited for the summer ahead.

Head on over to Local in Season for the recipe!

We also have a winner of my BBQ sauce giveaway! The winner was chosen using

And the winner is...


"I'm also gonna go with sweet chipotle bourbon, woot woot!"

Congrats, Theresa! Please email me within 48 hours to claim your prize.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

BBQ Mushroom and Eggplant Quesadillas + a Giveaway!

Father's Day is fast approaching, and I tend to give my dad the same thing every year: a gift card to a local butcher shoppe and some marinades and spices. He loves cooking and grilling, so my annual Father's Day gift is always a winner.

So, when the folks at Chicken Soup for the Soul (remember those books??) reached out to me and asked if I wanted to try some of their new barbecue sauces - and give one of you a bottle in return - I happily said yes. Nothing tells dad you love him more than a bottle of delicious BBQ sauce, destined for his favorite meats and veggies.

Chicken Soup for the Soul carries four BBQ sauce flavors: Classic, Buffalo, Sweet Chipotle Bourbon, and Honey Mustard (all vegetarian-friendly). 

I used the Classic BBQ Sauce in this recipe for a smoky and sweet twist on the typical quesadilla. Chicken Soup's Classic sauce is packed with flavor, and I found myself consistently dipping my finger in the bottle for another taste. I used a generous amount in this recipe (the instructions on the bottle recommend using a heavy hand), and every bite - mixed with the spicy, melted cheddar cheese - was even more indulgent and delicious than the previous one.

BBQ Mushroom and Eggplant Quesadillas | The Economical Eater

BBQ Mushroom and Eggplant Quesadillas
Yields: 2 quesadillas
-2 tablespoons olive oil
-1/4 large yellow onion (or 1/2 small yellow onion), thinly sliced
-1 large portobello mushroom, cut into large chunks
-1 cup chopped cooked eggplant (we had cooked ours on the grill, but cook yours as you wish)
-Salt and black pepper, to taste
-2 heaping tablespoons Chicken Soup for the Soul Classic BBQ Sauce
-1/2 cup shredded habanero cheddar cheese (or plain cheddar will do)
-2 10-inch whole wheat tortillas

1.) In a large saute pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook until they begin to soften and turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook until they begin to brown, about 4 minutes more.
2.) Add eggplant and season with salt and pepper. Add BBQ sauce, stir, and cook for about 2-3 minutes more, or until BBQ sauce is warmed through.
3.) Sprinkle 1/4 cup shredded cheese on each tortilla (I sprinkle some under and on top of toppings to help "glue" everything together). Pile half of the mushroom and eggplant filling on top of the cheese, and fold the other half of the tortilla over the filling. 
4.) Place a lightly greased frying pan over medium heat. Once hot, place quesadillas in the pan and cook on one side until golden brown. Carefully flip each quesadilla and cook on the opposite side until golden brown. Serve.

BBQ Mushroom and Eggplant Quesadillas | The Economical Eater

I honestly didn't need any garnishes or condiments with my quesadilla (and I am most definitely a condiment girl). The Classic BBQ Sauce boasted such an incredible flavor, and mixed with the sweet onions and the "meaty" mushrooms and eggplant, it was a divine combination of flavors and textures all on its own.

The generous folks at Chicken Soup for the Soul have offered to give one bottle of their BBQ sauce away to one lucky EE reader! (Winner gets to pick the flavor of their choice). To enter, simply comment on this post about which flavor you'd like to try and why. For an extra entry, tweet: "I want to #win BBQ Sauce from @MichellePC & @ChickenSoupSoul! #summer #FathersDay". Just leave a second comment here with your tweet. I will randomly pick a winner on Tuesday, June 10th.

*Please note: This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.

Oh, and if you're looking to buy a few bottles, the BBQ sauces are available at Stop & Shop.

I received the Classic and Buffalo BBQ Sauces in return for hosting this giveaway, but all opinions are my own. 

This giveaway is now closed. 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Penguin Pizza in Boston

Venturing into the Fenway/Kenmore area - or, Boston in general - for pizza isn't something I would normally do, especially on a weeknight. We're spoiled here in Somerville - we have every kind of cuisine we could ever want within a short walking (or biking) distance. So why would I take several T lines to eat pizza in Boston? Let's just say our friends spoke very highly of Penguin Pizza, so we agreed to meet them there for dinner last week.

And thank gosh we did. Penguin Pizza makes some damn good pies. (Their menu also boasts a variety of other options, including appetizers, sandwiches, and pasta dishes, but the real winner here is the pizza).

The first pie we tried was The Pimento ($11.99 for a medium 14"), topped with roasted red peppers, red onions, sun-dried tomatoes, broccoli, and goat cheese.

Penguin Pizza in Boston | The Economical Eater

The second pie we ordered came highly recommended from our friends: the Roasted Eggplant Pizza ($12.99 for a medium), piled high with roasted eggplant, dollops of creamy ricotta cheese, and fresh basil, all drizzled with a balsamic vinegar glaze. 

Penguin Pizza in Boston | The Economical Eater

(Sorry for the photos - I forgot my camera and used my iPhone! #badblogger).

I loved the thinner, crispy crust Penguin Pizza makes. Even though the toppings and cheese were plentiful on each pie, the crust still held up to the weight of the toppings. The smoky eggplant with the rich ricotta and the sweet balsamic vinegar glaze was a divine combination in the Roasted Eggplant Pizza, but I think the Pimento was my favorite. I adored the varying textures (especially the crunch from the broccoli), and how can you not like goat cheese on pizza? It's fantastic.

At Penguin Pizza, all vegetarian pies are marked as such with a "V," and gluten-free and whole wheat crusts are also available for each pie.

In addition to great pizza, Penguin also has a decent draft and bottled beer list, as well as wine.

Needless to say, it was worth venturing into Boston for this meal.

Do you normally venture out of your neighborhood for dinner, or do you stay closer to home?

Penguin Pizza on Urbanspoon

Monday, June 2, 2014

Mexican Pasta Salad

Most of the time, I make pesto (or infused simple syrups) with leftover herbs. Those are definitely my two go-to uses for everything from leftover basil to rosemary to parsley. But last week, when I was faced with a bunch of leftover cilantro, I wanted to try something a little different. So I turned the leftovers into a refreshing dressing that got mixed into this vibrant and flavorful pasta salad.

Mexican Pasta Salad | The Economical Eater

Mexican Pasta Salad
Yields: 8 servings
For Salad:
-1 pound farfalle pasta (or pasta of your choice)
-1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
-1 cup frozen or fresh sweet corn kernels
-1/4 cup diced red onion
-1 tablespoon diced pickled jalapenos
-Salt and black pepper, to taste

For Dressing:
-1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
-Juice of 1 1/2 limes
-1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
-1 teaspoon chili powder
-3 tablespoons olive oil
-Pinch of granulated sugar
-Salt and black pepper

1.) Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; add pasta and cook according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
2.) In a medium-sized bowl, rapidly whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. Dunk in a piece of the cooked pasta and taste; adjust seasoning as/if needed. Set dressing aside.
3.) In a large bowl, mix pasta with tomatoes, corn, red onion, and jalapenos. Add dressing and toss until pasta and vegetables are coated nicely (but are not overdressed). (The amount of dressing you make should be perfect for 1 pound of pasta). Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.

This pasta salad can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours before serving.

Mexican Pasta Salad | The Economical Eater

The bright, flavorful salad dressing mixed with the plump, juicy tomatoes, spicy red onion, and sweet corn was a divine combination - especially when served with veggie sausages and burgers (for the omnivores, obviously) cooked on the grill. I loved how the farfalle pasta's nooks and crannies soaked in all of the dressing, but really any pasta would do well here. 

Mexican Pasta Salad | The Economical Eater

Bonus: This pasta salad is also vegan!

What's your favorite side dish to bring to a cookout?