Cookbook Corner: Lick Your Plate | Food Bloggers of Canada

Lick Your Plate: A Lip Smackin’ Book For Every Home Cook by Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat includes 160 recipes (including vegetarian) that are fast, easy to make and sure to please the whole family. Julie and Lisa are two sisters who complement each other’s talents, and their witty anecdotes add a story to the recipes. Their humour is reminiscent of the times my sister and I spent in the kitchen, bursting out in laughter over some cooking disaster mishap.

The Lick Your Plate Chapters

The ten chapters (No Fork Required Appetizers; Steamed-Up Soups; Crunch Time Salads; Pick of the Crop Vegetables; Fueled-Up Pasta, Rice and Grains; Rule the Roost Chicken & Turkey; No Bones About It Fish; Grade-A Meat; Rise & Shine Brunch; and, Be-All & End-All Desserts) list 160 delicious, unique recipes that are easy to make for the whole family.

The Lick Your Plate Recipes

The recipes are well-formatted and straightforward, and include Prep and Cook times along with cooking symbols (described in the Introduction section of the cookbook). The humorous anecdotes by Julie and Lisa included in the recipe headers give the recipes a personal touch. The full-page colour photos are stunning and will entice you to get into the kitchen to start cooking.

Sample recipes include:

  • Maple Sriracha Baked Wings (No Fork Required)
  • Thai Coconut & Ginger Soup (Steamed Up)
  • Falafel Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing (Crunch Time)
  • Buttermilk Ranch Mashed Potatoes and Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower (Pick of the Crop)
  • Angel Hair Pasta with Zucchini, Tomatoes & Homemade Ricotta (Fueled-Up)
  • Lime Chicken Kebabs with Creamy Avocado Dip (Rule the Roost)
  • Golden Pan-Seared Halibut with Eggplant Caponata and Crispy Baked Parmesan-Crusted Fish Sticks (No Bones About It)
  • The Ultimate French Dip Sandwich and Slow Cook Beef Chili (Grade-A)
  • Fluffy Apple Pie Pancakes and Luscious Lemon Sticky Buns (Rise & Shine)
  • Toffee Crunch Caramel Cheesecake and Decadent Dulce de Leche Brownies (Be-All & End-All).

Tested Lick Your Plate Recipes

Lemon Ricotta Crepes with Fresh Berry Sauce (Page 226)

While I was making the crepes, my husband just wandered into the kitchen and my youngest daughter dropped by for a visit. Perfect timing! My husband thought the filling was a bit sweet. My daughter and I loved the taste of the combination of the crepes filled with lemon-scented creamy ricotta filling and fresh berry sauce. She asked for seconds.

Since I don't have a small skillet with sides or a small crepe pan as required for the recipe, I used my 10-inch crepe pan and increased the batter for the crepes to ½ cup from ¼ cup, reducing the servings from 12 to six. Also, I increased the amount of filling for each crepe to two tablespoons from one tablespoon.

Chunky Potato, Tuna & Bean Salad (Page 78)

Potato and tuna salad is part of my menu repertoire, but adding the kidney beans and tossing it with a Dijon vinaigrette brings it up to another level. And, it only takes 25 minutes to prep and cook.

The Dijon vinaigrette seems to enhance the flavour of the ingredients. I served it for lunch with crusty bread to sop up the juices. This recipe has replaced my potato and tuna salad.

Golden Zucchini Ricotta Fritters (Page 98)

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The only thing I can say about these fritters is that we were eating them as I was making them. Creamy on the inside, crispy on the outside, and a squeeze of lemon made them so good that we couldn't resist the temptation. Prep and cook time was only 20 minutes. The serving suggestion was a side dish, but there were none left to serve.

I ended up making eight fritters instead of 10 and added an extra teaspoon of olive oil to the pan at the end to finish cooking them.

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Bookshelf Worthy?

The recipes that I tested were easy to make and delicious. When pressed for time, the Prep and Cook times were a factor in choosing which recipe to make. As a home cook, I recommend that you add the ‘Lick Your Plate’ cookbook to your bookshelf. When my family asks for seconds, it’s a keeper for me!

4.3 from 10 reviews
Golden Zucchini Fritters
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
We know that your time is precious, so we aren’t going to encourage you to fritter it away. Or are we? These fantastic fritters are a mere 20-minute investment and the results are worth every second. Cooked until golden-crusted yet soft and creamy inside, these crispy cakes are the combination of grated sweet zucchini mixed with fresh creamy ricotta and flavorful Parmesan cheese. A delicious, fast and easy side dish, these crowd-pleasing Zucchini Ricotta Fritters will definitely free up some time for you to dilly-dally.
Recipe type: Side Dish, Appetizer
Serves: 10
  • 2 medium zucchinis
  • ¾ cup ricotta cheese
  • ¾ cup breadcrumbs
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 1 egg, lightly whisked
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Lemon wedges, to squeeze over cooked zucchini fritters
  1. GRATE ZUCCHINIS and remove excess liquid by squeezing the zucchini in small sections with your hands. Place grated zucchini on paper towels to remove remaining liquid. Place in a large bowl and combine with ricotta cheese, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic, whisked egg, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly until well combined.
  2. USING A ¼-CUP SCOOP, form zucchini mixture into 10 round, flat patties. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add zucchini patties and cook until golden, 2–3 minutes per side. Remove from heat and serve with squeezed lemon juice.
Choose small to medium-sized, darker-skinned zucchinis, as they have more flavor and nutrients than large ones.

Lick Your Plate: A Lip Smackin’ Book for Every Home Cook
Authors: Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat
Hardcover: 296 pages
Publisher: Appetite by Random House
ISBN: 978-0-1-14-752988-6

A Lick Your Plate Giveaway

Thanks to our friends at Appetite by Random House, we're giving away three copies of Lick Your Plate to three lucky winners.  To enter, you must comment below telling us your favourite 30 minute meal to make in the kitchen.  You can earn other entries through rafflecopter as well.

The contest runs until end of day July 17th, 2016 and is open only to residents of Canada (yes, Quebec residents can enter to win!).  If you win, you must correctly answer a skill testing question to claim your prize.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Excerpt from Lick Your Plate Copyright © 2016 Pinky Swear Press. Reprinted by permission of Appetite by Random House, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Photography credit: Ryan Szulc.

The Lick Your Plate cookbook review was written by Liliana Tommasini, author of the aptly named blog My Cookbook Addiction. Her passion for baking and cooking began at an early age. She also has a passion for collecting cookbooks and improving her photography skills. Liliana grew up in an Italian household where each meal was made from scratch with fresh ingredients and Sunday family lunches were always a celebration. Now, Sunday lunches are celebrated in her family. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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My favourite 30 minute meal is an omelette. This sounds like such a fun book! Thanks for the chance to win.

Gwen N

This looks like a keeper in the cookbook collection! Would love to win
(Couldn’t get 5 stars to work – I give it 5👍

Heather Reid

My favourite 30 minute meal is a homemade pesto and pasta with grilled chicken and fresh garden salad.


I think quesadillas and taco pie are two of my favourite super quick dinners to make. I’m always looking for new ones to try.


For an easy weeknight dinner, I make a quick chicken curry…30 minutes start to finish. Perfect for a Monday!


Right now, my favourite meal to make in 30 minutes is a loaded salad, with fresh veggies, cannellini beans, nuts and seeds, and a mustardy vinaigrette. Perhaps with some roasted or grilled potatoes or eggplant on the side.


Favourite 30 minute meal… Vegetarian chilli and/or black bean burgers… Yummy! 🙂


One of my favourite 30 minute meals, especially in the summer, are BBQ chicken salads. Just grill up some chicken breasts with your fave BBQ sauce, and clean out the veggies in the fridge to make your salad. Add a little cheese and ranch dressing, and you’re set!

Cassie | Crumb Kitchen

My favourite 30 minute meal would be omelettes (which are even less than 30 mins!). They’re so simple and you can throw anything you have on-hand in them. The perfect busy night meal!


My favourite 30-min meal is a noodle miso soup with vegetables and tofu. For variation, I sometimes turn it into a curry broth. I have this at least once a week.


Homemade pizza with storebought dough would be one of our favourite go-to 30 meals. Pesto sauce, sliced tomatoes, sliced bacon, and mozzarella. Or any other combination you like!
12 monutes at 425 F and your pizza is delicious and ready.


I love savoury crepes….so anything is hanging around in the fridge gets wrapped in that (hot or cold) and sriracha mayo on top!!


My favorite 30 minute meal is pepper pasta with a sauce made from Italian spiced sausage meat and a premade roasted pepper tomato sauce.

Amanda T

Pork stirfry with whatever fresh or frozen veggies I have on hand is my favourite 30-minute meal.

Chris MacDonald

My favourite meal to make in 30 minutes is Veal Parmigiana. Veal takes a few minutes to bread (dip into egg and then bread crumbs) and then fry 2 mintes per side in shortening. Easy to make some pasta as a side dish and top with tomato sauce and grated paremesan! Yummy!

Karen W

When in a hurry, I make chicken cacciattore in the microwave and it’s ready by the time I’ve boiled water and cooked the pasta on the stove. That’s definitely well under 30 minutes.

Connie P.

My favourite meal to make in 30 minutes is omelet with left over veggies and cheese. It can be different every time, it all depends on what leftovers you have.

Stephanie C

My favourite quick and easy meal to make is a one-skillet pasta dish – I toss in some veggies, some fresh tomato sauce, herbs and (if I want something heavier), some cut up Italian sausages and it’s good to go!


My favourite 30 minute meal is fresh / summer rolls – just chop up some veggies, ad in some herbs and protein (like defrosted shrimp) and roll up the rice paper wrappers!

Barb Parker

Grilled Halibut served with mango salsa and a green salad is my favourite 30 minute meal.

Elizabeth Bryan

My favourite 30 minute meal is spaghetti…thanks for the chance to win this great cookbook!

Mary Warner

The Angel Hair pasta with zucchini, tomatoes, ricotta, and any left over veggies I have around. I love pasta.


My favourite 30-minute meal is a goodness bowl using grains that I’ve pre-cooked and stored in the freezer for just such an occasion, along with whatever odds and ends of greens and veggies I find in the fridge. It’s a way to clean out the fridge and have a tasty and nutritious dinner too!

Amber Y

My favourite meal to make in less than 30 minutes is spaghetti. It’s filling, comforting, easy to make and there’s usually plenty to share!

Sarah De Diego

Grilled cheese or quesadillas are a family favourite especially with the cook (me!) because they’re quick and easy to make and clean up.

Besos, Sarah
Journeys of The Zoo

Stacy Westman

I love using my cast-iron skillet to make blackened chicken. I have never found a way of making more tender and moist chicken breasts. We always serve it with coleslaw, corn on the cob, and “baked” potatoes (microwaved).

Teresa Valvano

My favourite 30 minute meal is pasta primavera (pasta w whatever vegetables I have on hand).

lynn clayton

stove top lassaggna casserole tastes just like lassagnna but in less time nad in one pan

Meghan S.

It’s not technically a meal, more of a snack I guess, but I love making home made salsa! So much better than 90% of the stuff you get at the store. And it’s essentially soup.

Alayne Langford

I can make pasta with homemade tomato sauce and fresh veggies in 30 minutes or less! This is our go to meal, especially before a soccer game! I love your 10 chapters of goodness!!

Holly Botner

Congrats on a job well done! Favourite 30 minute meal is toasted sesame seed Montreal bagel, lox and goat cheese sandwich with sweet onion and capers and an endive, watercress salad dressed with a touch of olive oil and a splash of seasoned rice vinegar..

Janet Moore

Recently we’ve been making a middle eastern one bowl meal, Mejadra, with rice lentils and yummy crispy onions for a quick dinner. Tasty and filling plus it’s ready within 30 minutes.


My favorite go-to quick meal in 30 minutes or less is an easy spaghetti carbonara! Great for a weekday/ post-work meal !

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