Thursday, April 29, 2010

Honey Glazed Carrots

These were SO sweet...with VERY little in the way of sugar!


2-3 cups small baby carrots (pre-peeled)
1/2 cup butter
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

In a medium skillet, melt butter. Add brown sugar, honey, nutmeg and cinnamon; mix together. Add Carrots. Cover; cook on medium low to medium heat for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. When finished cooking, the carrots should be firm, not mushy.

Herbed Brown Rice

So...I have been wanting to WANT to eat more brown rice...instead of white rice. White rice is much lower in nutritional content than brown naturally...this journey to health seeking mama wants to eat the brown! However, as many of you probably know...brown itself is very icky to many people. Here is a recipe that even my husband loved! I made a LARGE LARGE batch of the I can eat it with lunch! However, I will give you the regular sized portion.


1 1/4 cups vegetable or chicken stock.
1 TBSP minced garlic
1/2 TBSP oregano
1/2 TBSP marjoram
1/2 TBSP thyme
dash of cayenne pepper
dash of garlic salt
1 bag of boil in a bag brown rice

***You can experiment with the herbs...but this seems to leave it flavorful while not overdoing it on anything.***

In a large pot bring to boil all ingredients. Remove rice from bag and pour into boiling liquid. Allow to boil on low to medium until all liquid is absorbed. Stirring Occasionally.

Keep in mind that brown rice is not going to have as soft a texture. In fact it is very "nutty" in flavor and texture alike. :) Hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Sausage & Bean Ragout

Makes: 6 Servings
Prep: 10 Minutes
Cook: 25 minutes


2 tbsp olive oil
1 lb ground turkey (or beef)
1 lb ground hot italian pork sausage (casing removed)
1 c. frozen chopped onion
4 cloves minced garlic
3 1/2 c. Chicken Broth
1/4 c. chopped fresh basil
2 cans (14 1/2 oz each) diced tomatoes (with garlic, oregano, and basil)
1 can white kidney (cannellini) beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 c. uncooked elbow macaroni
1 bag (6 oz) baby spinach leaves, washed.
1/3 c. grated romano cheese.

1. Heat the oil in a 6-quart saucepot over medium high heat. Add the ground turkey, sausage and onion and cook until the meats are well browned and broken up. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, pour off any fat.
2. Stir the broth, basil, tomatoes and beans into the saucepot. Heat to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the macaroni and cook until the macaroni is tender but still firm, stirring occasionally.
3. Add the spinach and cook just until the spinach wilts, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheese. Serve with additional cheese if desired.

***When you put the spinach in the pot...its going to look like a LOT of will cook down. I PROMISE!!!****

Creamy Chicken & Bacon Tortilla Soup


1 onion, chopped (or 1 1/2 c. of frozen onion)
3 TBSP minced garlic
2 tsps chili powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 c. crumbled bacon
1 can crushed tomatoes
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup whole corn kernels
1 (4oz can) chopped green chile peppers
2 cans kidney or black beans (drained and rinsed)
2 large boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized chunks
1 cup monterrey jack cheese
4 oz sour cream

Optional Garnish

crushed tortilla chips
sliced avocado
shredded monterrey jack cheese
chopped green onions

1. In a slow cooker combine all ingredients except for cheese.
2. Cook on LOW for 5-6 hours
3. During last 30 minutes stir in cheese.
4. Serve with optional garnish.

Monday, April 19, 2010


Alright...we've all been are at the end of a bag of tortilla chips...what do you do with the crumbs? Well, generally you just throw the bag in the trash and call it good! I have 2 quick ways to spice up the crumbs and add them to lots of different stuff! Start putting those crumbs into a 1 gallon zip lock bag (you can also use stale tortilla chips and crush them up! They won't taste stale when you are done!)

Garlic & Lime Crushed Tortilla Chips

In a large mixing bowl add enough lime juice to coat tortilla chips, but not make them soggy. Throw in a bit of garlic salt (about 2 tsp) and toss. Put in oven at 200 for about 5 minutes.

Fiesta Ranch Crushed Tortilla Chips

In a large mixing bowl add a small amount of olive oil (again, enough to coat but not make them soggy). Use 1/2 packet of Fiesta Ranch Hidden Valley Dressing Packet and toss. Put in the oven at 200 for about 5 minutes.

Both of these recipes are great on soups, salads, chili's, etc. :) Hope you enjoy!

Easy Breakfast Casserole

You can thank my mom for this one! Its easy and can even be prepared the night before and refrigerated! It heats up really easily once it is cooked...for leftovers. (Which there are NEVER any of around here!) Feel free to play around with the meats! It also tastes great with cubed ham or turkey breakfast sausage! :)

1 lb. breakfast sausage
1 bag hash browns
1 can cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup
1 cup sour cream
9 eggs + enough milk as you would use to make scrambled eggs
1 12 oz pkg of cheddar cheese
salsa (the amount is your choice)
Salt and pepper to taste

Cook the breakfast sausage and crumble
Layer the hashbrowns on the bottom of the casserole
Put crumbled sausage on top of hash browns
Mix the soup, sour cream, salsa and scrambled egg mixture together.
Pour over hashbrowns and sausage
sprinkle cheddar cheese on top
Bake at 350-375 for 45 mins.
Casserole is done when middle is set.

Makes a 9X11 casserole... you can freeze it after it is baked.

Easy Chicken & Biscuits

Makes: 5 Servings
Prep: 10 Minutes
Bake: 30 Minutes


1 can condensed cream of celery soup
1 can condensed cream of potato soup
1 cup milk
1/4 tsp dried, crushed thyme leaves
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
4 cups cooked cut up vegetables (we used broccoli & cauliflower)
2 cups cubed cooked chicken
1 package (7oz) refrigerated biscuits (10)
1 small package mozzarella (optional)

1. Stir the soups, milk, thyme, black pepper, mozarella and chicken in a 13x9-inch (3qt) shallow baking dish.
2. Bake at 400 for 15 minutes, stir.
3. Cut each biscuit into quarters, arrange cut biscuits over the chicken mixture.
4. Bake for 15 more minutes or until biscuits are golden.

Shh....Don't Tell!

Like I said before...I am a very impatient person! Here are a few things I have found to cut down on my time in the kitchen...but not cut down on quality!

Onions- First of all...I haven't met a person yet who just loves cutting up onions. I have tried every trick in the book to keep my eyes from no avail. Also, without fail, I always SLICE my finger open! :( Onions are super messy to clean up too! Well, here ya go. I use frozen chopped onion. You can find this in just about any supermarket...and let me tell you...I haven't noticed any difference in taste. I'm just saying...if it keeps my mascara from running...I'm all about it!

Green green peppers really don't pose much threat other than once again chopping up your finger. I use frozen chopped green pepper too! Works for me...there is nothing cute about walking around with your kids "Dora" band-aids all over your hands!

Garlic- Okay, so I occasionally use whole garlic...but many times if I am trying to cut down on a time (that requires the garlic to be minced, crushed etc., I just use jarred minced garlic. You can get a HUGE jar of it for no more than $6 at Wal-mart. Be sure and check the directions on the back...I have found several different brands have different amounts that equal a clove.

I have all of these things in my kitchen at all times. When I am running low, I go ahead and replace them the next time I am at the store. Generally, I am only buying a new package of onions or green peppers every 3 weeks or so. You cut down on produce going bad, throwing out what you don't need, and about 5 minutes of prep time! The cost isn't anymore than buying a couple onions or green peppers (about $2 a bag.)

Hope those tips give you a little bit of time to relax...remember the kitchen doesn't have to scare you!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Baked Chicken & Cheese Risotto

Makes: 4 Servings
Prep: 10 Minutes
Bake: 45 Minutes
Stand: 45 Minutes

1 can Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup
1 1/4 cups water
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
3 TBSP grated parmesean
1 1/2 cups frozen mixed veggies
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cooked and cut in cubes)
3/4 cup uncooked Arborio or regular long grain white rice

1. Stir the soup, water, milk, mozarella cheese, parmesean cheese, vegetables, chicken and rice in a 13x9 (3qt) shallow baking dish. COVER
2. Bake at 400 for 35 minutes, stir.
3. Bake for 10 minutes more or until hot and the rice is tender. Let stand for 5 minutes.

Blackbean, Corn & Turkey Chili


1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 pound ground turkey
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried, crushed oregano leaves
½ tsp ground black pepper
¼ tsp garlic powder
1 ¾ cups Chicken broth
1 cup Pace chunky salsa
1 tablespoon sugar
1 can (15 oz) blackbeans, rinsed and drained
1 can (16 oz) whole kernel corn drained.

1. Heat the oil in a 4-qt saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the turkey, onion, chili powder, cumin, oregano, black pepper and garlic powder. Cook until the turkey is well browned, stirring frequently to break up meat.
2. Stir the broth salsa, sugar, beans and corn into the saucepan. Heat to a boil. Reduce the heat to low.
3. Cover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Organizing Your Recipes!

Alright ladies!  Before I get started posting should all know the best way to organize them.  I finally started doing this after scouring countless cookbooks, google-ing and searching everywhere for that recipe that my husband loves.  Here's what I did and its super simple!

Get yourself a cheap three ring binder.  You can find them just about anywhere for about $2 or less.  Then pick up a package of dividers.  I like to use the plastic dividers...because afterall...this thing sits in my kitchen...and messes happen!  I have my dividers labeled as follows:  Chicken, Beef, Pork, Crockpot, Fish, Soups/Chili's, Sides, Desserts, Other.  You can add to/delete any of these according to your families tastes!

Once you get a recipe you absolutely LOVE...print it out...punch some holes in it...and stick it in the corresponding section.  Let me tell you...this has cut down on tons of time finding recipes.  I only put the keepers in the book!  Hope it works for you!

Saturday, April 17, 2010


Hey Ladies!

Grab a cup of coffee, tea or pop...because this the place you can go to relax. The idea for this blog started out with people asking me for my recipes...asking me how I manage to cook such yummy meals with 2 kids under the age of 3. Well...I will fill you all in on my secrets both cooking related and not! Be sure and tell me what YOU want to see mamas!

Be patient as I get things up and running...I have several weeks of catching up to people's requests! :)