During my undergrad years, my roommate taught me how to cook vegetarian dishes like brown rice with pintos. It's so versatile; you can turn it into a wrap or casserole. —Natalie Van Apeldoorn, Vancouver, BC
I turned to a particular dish when I wanted to use peppers I grew in my garden. I promptly rewrote the recipe to include several other fresh veggies and this was the result. It's a perfect side dish for just about anything. —Kate Selner of Lino Lakes, Minnesota
Leah Lyon of Ada, Oklahoma often rounds out a meal with Southwest Iceberg Slaw. "It's a cool, light and versatile side dish I created one day when I was trying to stretch my avocados," she says. "And friends rave about it no matter what vegetables I add!“
TASTY TIP: Try substituting other fresh garden vegetables in this salad or adding low-fat Mexican panela cheese for a light lunch entree, suggests Leah.
I substituted reduced-sodium chicken broth for the rich chicken stock that was originally called for in this recipe. It's a great side dish to serve with grilled fish or chicken for a tasty low-fat meal.
—Connie Rank-Smith of Sherwood, Wisconsin
I’m new to jicama, a root vegetable that’s popular in Mexican and Southwestern cooking. It lends plenty of crunch to this no-fuss salad and blends well with the other zippy ingredients.—Deborah Williams, Peoria, Arizona
You get an explosion of Southwestern flavor in every bite of this deliciously different salad. It's a favorite for kids of all ages since it mixes beans and cheese, tasty vegetables and crisp corn chips.
—Jerri Moror, Rio Rancho, New Mexico
Meet the Cook: Because it is so hearty, no one misses the meat in this chili. Both family - my husband and I have three daughters and one grandchild - and friends ask for it.
-Rene Fry, Hampstead, Maryland