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How to Use Tequila in Every Meal, Because Life’s a Party

Out of all the weird food holidays in the world, National Tequila Day has the biggest built-in celebration. Instead of taking too many shots, shots, shots and regretting it the next morning, pace yourself with an all-day party featuring tequila in every dish.

Even though we love a good margarita and spiked Mexican food, it’s time to mix things outside the cocktail shaker. Check out five of our favorite tequila recipes below.

Breakfast: Tequila-Cured Salmon

Kick off your morning with boozy salmon paired with Bobby Flay’s herbed goat cheese or roasted jalapeno-cilantro cream cheese. Your bagels and schmear won’t know what hit them.

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Give ‘Em Something to Tot About with 6 Crazy Tater Tot Recipes

Time travel isn’t a thing yet, but you can transport yourself back to childhood with a big bowl of Tater Tots. There’s something special about the potato nuggets that makes them crispier and more nostalgic than simple french fries or even the fun-shaped curly fries, and the best part is that as an adult, you can dress them up however you want.

Check out six ways to tater your tots to the next level, from smothering them like a loaded baked potato to topping a casserole with tots and so much more.

1. DIY Them from Start to Finish

Justine Simmons makes her own homemade potato tots and buttermilk ranch dressing, which is a great foundation for any toppings coming its way.

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Dixie Tricks: 5 Twists on Southern Staples

Most of our daily problems can be solved with a bite of Southern comfort food, but sometimes fried chicken, sweet tea and barbecue just won’t cut it. If you’re sick of the same ol’ down-home specialties, try putting new spins on your favorite dishes like Little Big Town singer Kimberly Schlapman does on her show, Kimberly’s Simply Southern.

Whether it’s a surprising dash of cocoa in a savory dish or some maple syrup to cool down spicy chicken, we guarantee you won’t be bored with your comfort food again.

Oven-Roasted Ribs

A tablespoon of cocoa balances out the cayenne pepper in Kimberly’s dry rub, and instead of big beef ribs, she opts for spareribs instead. When topped with smoked barbecue sauce, the ribs fit right in with your favorite Southern classics.

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Unwind With Wine Milkshakes and 3 More Buzzworthy, Boozy Frozen Desserts

When reaching for something comforting, most people’s biggest vices are booze and sweets. For those times when you can’t decide between the two — such as after a bad breakup or a particularly harrowing day at work — just blend ‘em together in a wine milkshake.

What is a wine milkshake, you ask? It’s a magical (yet simple) concoction that we first tried at Vince Young Steakhouse in Austin, Texas this summer, which blends great red wine with homemade vanilla ice cream for a perfectly balanced way to end a meal. Their classic off-menu drink is great as-is, but we couldn’t help but ask how you could improve it and switch things up, like adding chocolate or hard liquor.

Check out Chef Phillip Brown’s tips and tricks below, plus three more alcoholic frozen treats to try at home.

How to Make a Wine Milkshake

The recipe is not exact and is more about tasting as you go, but Chef Brown recommends 5 ounces of wine for every six big scoops of vanilla ice cream (like Alton Brown’s serious recipe here). They use their own private-label wine — Eleven Ten Cabernet Sauvignon, “Wildcatter,” Spring Mountain, 2009 — but you can sub in any Cab at home. Brown and his wife, Vince Young’s co-owner Laura (who invented the shake), have found that is the best red for the boozy shake.

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Satisfy Your Salty and Sweet Cravings With 4 Dreamy Ice Cream Treats

As the weather heats up, everyone is looking for a way to cool down. Sure, you can go for a swim in the local pool or stand in front of your air conditioner, but the ultimate way is to grab a sweet ice cream treat.

Even though we’re big supporters of the classic soft-serve twist in a cone, sometimes other cravings take over and you don’t want just a sugar rush. To satisfy your savory side, there’s always caramel-candied bacon, goat cheese ice cream or a sprinkling of popcorn to give you a salty bite of life.

Sweet Corn Ice Cream, Salty Popped Corn and Caramel-Candied Bacon

When the powers of popcorn, caramel, bacon and sweet corn ice cream combine, magic happens.

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Host a Carnival at Home with These 4 Deep-Fried Favorites

Step right up, because it’s carnival season and funnel cakes and corn dogs are ready for you to devour. If you can’t get to a local fairground, you can still enjoy the best deep-fried delicacies with a handful of DIY carnival foods — we just don’t recommend trying to make your own rides at home.

Whether you’re frying pickles or a candy bar, you can satisfy any craving without leaving your kitchen. To really set the mood, play some weird jingles while you’re cooking and tune in to Carnival Eats starting July 16 at 10pm ET for more inspiration.

Banana Split Funnel Cake

This ultimate indulgence combines a super-crispy funnel cake with banana split toppings. Warning: Sugar highs are inevitable.

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6 Kitchen Adventure Weekend Projects, from Ice Cream to Homemade Bacon

Whenever the weekend rolls around, you have two options: sit on the couch and watch Netflix all day or be super-productive. Even though we’re all about lounging around and eating great food — especially when it is themed around camping-movie marathons or pairs perfectly with summer jams — you can use your downtime for a fun kitchen adventure instead.

Whether it’s churning up homemade ice cream for a backyard bash or starting the process for homemade bacon, there’s a cooking project fit for you. Check out six ideas below, ranked from easy-breezy to crazy-hard (but so worth it).

Easy-Breezy: Homemade Ice Cream

Once you master an easy ice cream flavor base, you can add any flavors that you want. Chocolate, strawberry, balsamic cherry — you name it! The ice cream maker does most of the work for you.

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What Kind of Fried Chicken Matches Your Personality? 5 Ways to Celebrate National Fried Chicken Day

In the world of random food holidays, National Fried Chicken Day (July 6) may be one of America’s best. Celebrating the Southern staple should really be an everyday occurrence, especially considering how many different ways you can prepare your poultry.

Even though we’re fans of the classic flour-egg-breadcrumb assembly-line process, today’s the day to be more adventurous. Below, find five of our favorite fried chicken recipes fit for any personality. Find out if you’re more of a classic Southern belle, a fit-and-fabulous food lover, a culinary globetrotter or something else.

The Classic Southern Belle: Fried Chicken in a Basket

Whether you’re a man or a woman, you can embrace your inner Southern belle. Big hair is optional when chowing down on Alex Guarnaschelli’s classic buttermilk-brined fried chicken.

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6 Compound Butters to Flavor Any Dish with a Little Decadence

Health nuts may want to look away for this one, because butter really does make anything better. We’re not just talking about a pat of any ol’ butter from the grocery store, though — we mean compound butters packed with flavors that will elevate whatever you make. This applies to breakfast, lunch, dinner and even brunch thanks to sweet and savory ingredients like strawberries, garlic, herbs and cheese (well, maybe not all of those mixed together).

So next time you want to add a little decadence to your dishes, soften up some butter and let your imagination take over. But if you have a difficult time deciding what to throw in there, we have six dynamite flavor suggestions for any occasion.

The Perfect Brunch: Strawberry-Black Pepper Butter

One of Bobby Flay’s favorite brunch hacks is to make a quick flavored butter. His Strawberry-Black Pepper Butter takes strawberry waffles to the next level, but you could also use it on pancakes, French toast or even regular toast. If you’re feeling adventurous, you could even make your own butter by shaking around cream in a jar and then adding berries — see Alie Ward and Georgia Hardstark’s instructions for berry homemade compound butter.

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Eat Your Way Across the Country with Summer Dishes from Every State

When traveling, the first thing we look for is delicious food. Whether it’s great barbecue in Texas or succulent seafood in Maine, one of the best parts about roving across the country is chowing down. But if you’re stuck at home this summer, don’t worry — you can easily re-create some states’ signature dishes from the comfort of your own kitchen.

We’ve highlighted seven of our favorite summer recipes below, ranging from the classics (Key Lime Pie from Florida) to the adventurous bites (Salmon Candy from Alaska). For the full list of all 50 states’ recipes, click here.

Alabama: Fried Green Tomatoes

The combination of salty and sweet fried green tomatoes is so great that it inspired a movie starring Julia Roberts. Try serving them with green chile mayonnaise for an extra kick.

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