There are countless things to love about New Year’s Eve. It’s a celebration that marks the end of one year – one set of memories and experiences – and welcomes a new one, hopefully full of even more memories and important experiences.
To us, the best New Year’s Eve celebrations include close friends, family, confetti and most of all, food. After all, no celebration is really complete without food! Many people and many cultures have specific foods they eat for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, all of which hold special meaning. We wrote about some of our favorites last year (you can see them here), but this year, we want to focus how to make our favorite party foods better for us. We do that, of course, by cooking them with kefir..
Below you’ll find five of our favorite recipes that we think help round out the perfect New Year’s Eve menu. They’re a mix of sweet and savory, a little indulgent, and 100 percent delicious. Check them out.
For Starters: Strained Kefir French Onion Dip
We fell completely in love with strained kefir this year and will definitely be bringing you more recipes utilizing it in 2016. Roughly the consistency of Greek yogurt, but with 2-3 times the probiotic activity, strained kefir is the perfect base for creamy dips and sauces, like this traditional French Onion Dip. While ripping open a mystery package of onion soup mix might sound appealing, we promise taking the time to sauté the onions and strain the kefir in this recipe is absolutely worth it.
Find the recipe here.
Stand Aside: Curry Sweet Potato Rounds
with Kefir Dipping Sauce
The second of three recipes using strained kefir, this recipe is an homage to one of our favorite New Year’s food traditions. Perfectly roasted and golden orange, sweet potatoes resemble coins, which symbolize the hope for wealth and prosperity in the new year. We love sweet potatoes for tons of reasons, including their high mineral content, healthy dose of fiber, and ability to keep our blood sugar off of the roller coaster. When paired with the curried kefir sauce, this side dish will keep guests coming back for seconds!
Get this easy recipe here.
The Main Event: Kefir Pesto Marinated Chicken
One of our favorite collaborations during 2015 was with a collection of award-winning chefs during the James Beard Foundation’s 2015 Taste America Tour. This recipe for Kefir Pesto Marinated Chicken recipe was inspired by the many clever uses for kefir the chefs developed. Marinating meat in kefir is the easiest way to get moist, flavorful dishes in a short period, thanks to the natural acids found in kefir. We love the light, bright flavor the pesto brings to this dish, too.
For more recipes from the Taste America chefs, check out our Made with Lifeway ebook here. Grab this recipe here.
Just Desserts: Cardamom kefir Tart with Fresh Fruit
No dinner is complete without dessert, but that doesn’t mean dessert has to be laden with fat, sugar and who knows what else. We returned to our strained kefir here for a simple, no-bake, freeze and please fresh fruit and nut tart that is perfect for entertaining. Gluten-free, refined sugar-free and full of gut-friendly probiotics, this strained kefir tart is a dessert that actually is good for you!
Our favorite way to serve it is in individualized tarts, but feel free to make it into smaller bites or even a bigger pie!
Find the recipe for it here.
Cheers to a Great Year: 100 Grand Kefir Smoothie
We couldn’t resist ending our menu with our fan-favorite 100 Grand Kefir Smoothie. Named after the famous Halloween candy, this smoothie is a sweet treat that we like to think of as a good luck charm. The smoothie itself costs nowhere near 100 grand, but it does make us feel like a million bucks when we drink it.
Find the recipe for this fun smoothie here.
So what do you think? Will any of these recipes make your New Year’s Eve menu? Let us know by visiting us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Find more recipe inspiration by checking us out on Pinterest, or viewing our Recipe collection on the website.