Thursday, September 29, 2011

Cincinnati Sloppy Joes

Sloppy Joes.  Pure comfort food in my book.  Many, many different ways to make them and they're all delicious.

I was intrigued by this Cincinnati Sloppy Joe recipe. I loved the idea of beans and chocolate in my sloppy joe.  

This was delicious. I ate mine over mashed potatoes.  I like to eat a lot of things over mashed potatoes.

Hubs of course still wanted a bun.  It's okay. I'll let him.  :-)

Cincinnati Sloppy Joes Recipe
Adapted from Rachael Ray

2 lbs. ground turkey, 93%
1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp. ancho chili powder
1 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. dried oregano
3 tbsp. tomato paste
2 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tbsp. worcestershire sauce
1 cup chicken stock
1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce
1 can (14 oz) kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Cook ground turkey.  Add pepper, onion and garlic and cook for about 3 minutes until it softens.  Add all the spices and cook for a couple of minutes.  Add the tomato paste, brown sugar and worcestershire, cook for another minute or so. 

Add the chicken stock and tomato sauce and simmer for a few minutes to thicken.  Add the beans. Serve on slider buns, sandwich thins or over mashed potatoes like I did.

Total calories = 1780 calories
6 servings = 296 calories per serving

1 serving sloppy joes + 2 servings mashed potatoes = 456 calorie dinner

One Year Ago...

Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich

Calories calculated from Some numbers are approximate and rounded.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Chipotle Honey Meatballs

Meatballs are so cute, aren't they? 

These would make excellent appetizers. Just put a decorated toothpick in them and they would be adorable at your next party!

I LOVED this sauce! You get the super sweetness from the honey and then the chipotle kick comes back at you.

You have to be careful with the chipotle peppers.  They can be pretty spicy.  Here's what I do; I puree the whole can, the peppers and the adobo sauce together.  Then I put in the refrigerator and it keeps for many weeks.  Then I am able to add however much I need to in my recipes.  To me, it's much easier than chopping an individual chipotle pepper.

I used about a tablespoon (maybe more) in the meatballs and then another tablespoon in the sauce.  I would recommend tasting the sauce and adding according to personal taste.

Chipotle Honey Meatballs
Adapted from Noble Pig

2 pounds ground chicken or turkey
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup plain dry bread crumbs 
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 can (4 ounce) chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, divided
1 teaspoon salt

Chipotle-Honey Sauce
3/4 cup honey
2 to 3 whole chipotle peppers in adobo sauce ** (see note above regarding chipotle peppers)
2 tbsp. cup chicken broth or water
1/3 cup tomato paste
1 Tablespoon lime juice
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt

Combine ground turkey or chicken, eggs, bread crumbs, cilantro, lime juice, garlic, 1 chopped chipotle pepper, about a couple teaspoons of adobo sauce and salt in a medium bowl. Mix well.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and form chicken mixture into 60 meatballs. Place the meatballs on the baking sheets and cover with plastic wrap; chill 1 hour. Or do what I did an just refrigerate the meat dough and then make the meatballs. I got 60 meatballs.

While the meatballs are chilling, make the sauce.

In a food processor or blender combine honey, 1 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chicken broth, tomato paste, lime juice, Dijon mustard and salt. Process until smooth. Set aside. (I didn't use the food processor, I just stirred it all together)

Remove meatballs from the refrigerator and spray with cooking spray or brush lightly with vegetable oil.  Bake both trays in a 400 degree oven for 12 minutes.

Remove the trays from the oven and place meatballs in a baking dish. Add Chipotle-Honey Sauce and brush the meatballs until they are coated.

Bake another 15 minutes or until meatballs are heated through and glazed with sauce.

Total calories = 2550 calories
60 meatballs = 42 calories per meatball with sauce

One Year Ago...

Tomato Basil Bread

Calories calculated from Some numbers are approximate and rounded.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Squash Zucchini Casserole

Whenever I pass by the zucchini and squash at the store or the farmers market, I end up buying some. I don't always have a plan for it but I know it will get used.

So I had some squash in the frig with no plans.  Then my friend gave me a zucchini.  I first thought to make these zucchini cookies that I've been meaning to make for ages!  Then I saw this recipe for squash casserole and thought that combining them would be perfect. 

It was.

I loved having the color of the green zucchini along with the yellow squash. I left the peels on and left them pretty chunky as I was mashing. 

We ate this with spicy chipotle meatballs and it was a super meal!

Squash Casserole

2 - 2 1/2 lbs. yellow squash and zucchini
1/2 cup egg substitute (or 2 eggs)
1/2 cup bread crumbs
3 tbsp. onion, minced
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
15 Ritz crackers (or 2 tbsp. butter/2 tbsp. bread crumbs)

Cut zucchini and squash into chunks. Steam the squash and zucchini in microwave with water until it's soft and able to be mashed. Drain well and mash, some chunks are okay.  Stir in egg, bread crumbs, onion and spices.  Pour into an 8 x 8 pan sprayed with cooking spray.  Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.  Crush Ritz crackers and sprinkle on top of casserole.  Bake for another 20 - 30 minutes until golden and done.

Total calories = 665 calories
4 servings = 166 per serving

One Year Ago...

Buffalo Chicken Pizza

Calories calculated from Some numbers are approximate and rounded.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Menu Plan Monday ~ September 26 - October 2, 2011

There are just too many things I want to make and just not enough time.  Some weeks, not enough energy!  This week I'm planning to make a bunch of taco meat and using the leftovers for other nights. 

Monday:  Black Bean and Corn Quinoa

Tuesday: Herb and Cheese Stuffed Burgers & Cowboy  Mashed Potatoes

Wednesday:  Tacos & Black Beans

Thursday: Taco Omelettes

Friday: Potato Nachos with sweet potatoes

Saturday: Leftovers and Gingerbread Popcorn

Sunday: Steaks or Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Apples

This is linked with Menu Plan Monday at I'm an Organizing Junkie

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Cake Batter Crispies

I wish I had better pictures of these.  I made them, plated them for the party; next thing I knew, they were gone.  I did manage to steal a taste and they were delicious. Of course.  The kids adored them and have been begging me to make them again ever since. 


Cake Batter Crispies
Adapted from Food For Thought

3 tbsp. butter
1 - 10 oz. bag of marshmallows
1/4 cup of yellow cake mix
6 cups Rice Krispies cereal

One Year Ago...

Apple Poppyseed Chicken Salad Wrap

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Arepas with Poblanos, Bacon and Eggs

I loved the name of this recipe. Arepas with Poblanos.  It just has a nice ring to it, doesn't it? You have to say it with an accent too of course. It just rolls off the tongue. Arepas with Poblanos!

I had never made arepas before.  I'm not sure I even really knew what an arepa was.  Well, let me tell you, they were delicious.  Like awesome corn pancakes.

While the poblanos looked pretty and were delicious, I think next time, I would just cut them up into the eggs.  I'm all about simple and that would just be one less step. Call me lazy but I think it would be just fine.

Arepas with Poblanos, Bacon and Eggs
Adapted from Rachael Ray Magazine Sept. 11

2 large poblano chile peppers
1 cup corn flour or finely ground cornmeal
1 cup corn
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese (3 oz)
1 cup milk
2 tbsp. butter
6 slices bacon, chopped
8 eggs
Cilantro (optional)

Preheat broiler to high.  Char the poblanos under the broiler on all sides, 5 - 6 minutes.  Place in a bowl, cover and let cool.  Peel, seed and slice.

Place corn flour and corn kernals in a bowl and season with salt.  Add the cheese and toss with your fingers.  In a small saucepan, heat the milk but do not boil. Add the butter to melt.  Stir into the corn mixture and let stand for about 10 minutes. 

Cook the bacon in a skillet until done and crispy.  Scoop bacon out onto paper towels to drain.  Save bacon grease to cook arepas and eggs in if desired.  (it's bacon grease, how could you NOT want to do this!)

Heat a thin layer of oil (I used bacon grease) in nonstick skillet over medium high heat.  Spoon corn cake mixture and flatten slightly. I used an ice cream scoop for measuring and just flattened them with the end of the scoop.  Cook them for 3 - 4 minutes on one side, or until you see the edges just getting brown.  Flip and cook on the second side for a couple of minutes. I fit 4 in a pan and cooked 12 arepas. 

Add small bit of bacon grease to skillet and and add the eggs.  Season with salt and cilantro.  Scramble to desired doneness.  Layer the eggs on the arepas and top with poblanos.

One Year Ago...

Cilantro Rice

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Vegetable Dip

Several weeks back, I was privileged enough to help create an Everyday Meal with 5 other talented food bloggers for Lawry's.  It was a contest.  10 teams, each with a team of 6.  Well, I'm happy to saw that Lawry's announced the winners and we won! Yea! 

Well, I was in need of some healthy veggie dip so I turned to Lawry's once again and it turned out fantastic!!


Veggie Dip

1 (6 oz) plain greek yogurt
1/3 cup sour cream
1/3 cup mayo
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. dried dill weed
2 tsp. Lawry's Seasoned Salt

Add all the ingredients together with a whisk. Chill an hour or so before serving.  This will keep in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks. 

One Year Ago...

Italian Sausage Pasta w/ Zucchini Broccoli Alfredo Sauce

Monday, September 19, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter & Oat Snack Bars

The kids are always eating granola bars.  They get expensive and I don't always really know what's in them.  

Chocolate peanut butter is always a fantastic combination so I was so hoping the kids would like these. 

These oat bars were awesome. They kids loved them and I felt so much better about what they were eating. They tasted delicious. These will be made again and again!

Chocolate Peanut Butter & Oat Snack Bars
Adapted from Love Veggies and Yoga

1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter, I used chunky
1/3 cup milk
1 1/2 cup oats, quick cooking
1/2 tbsp. vanilla extract
2 tbsp. sugar
1/4 cup pecan halves, rough chopped
1 tbsp. flaxseed meal

Melt chocolate chips, peanut butter and milk in the microwave in 20 second intervals, stirring and checking.  Once melted and stirred together, add the rest of the ingredients.  You want this to be fairly dry, if it's not dry enough, add more oats one tablespoon at a time. 

Press mixture into an 8 x 8 pan sprayed with cooking spray.  Refrigerate for about 30 minutes or until cooled and firm.  Cut into 10 slices.  You could also roll into balls as well for a finger snack. 

I put it through recipes and these are the stats that I came up with.

Nutrition Facts
10 Servings
Amount Per Serving
Calories 205.4
Total Fat 12.6 g
Saturated Fat 1.4 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2.8 g
Monounsaturated Fat 4.5 g
Cholesterol 0.4 mg
Sodium 187.3 mg
Potassium 163.3 mg
Total Carbohydrate 19.4 g
Dietary Fiber 2.8 g
Sugars 2.4 g
Protein 5.7 g

One Year Ago...

Hawaiian Rum Marinated Pineapple

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Menu Plan Monday ~ September 19 - September 25, 2011

Vacation is over and I'm ready to cook again!  I have a bunch of new recipes that I want to try this week.  Plus, I have a whole bunch of ground turkey and I plan to do some freezer cooking.  I want to get the freezer stocked for the next couple of weeks!

Monday: Hamburger Salad & Apple Pockets

Tuesday: Orange Barbecue Cashew Chicken

Wednesday: Southwest Smothered Chicken

Thursday: Steaks & Sweet n Sour Zucchini Salad

Friday: Leftovers

Saturday: Spaghetti

Sunday: All Day Meatballs, brown rice & veggies

This is linked with Menu Plan Monday at I'm an Organizing Junkie

One Year Ago...

Cheesy Chimichangas

Friday, September 16, 2011

Southwestern Potato Salad

I love a good potato salad.  So when I saw this southwestern version, I jumped on it. 

It called for a cup of mayo, I had to cut that down.  The greek yogurt worked just fine, the texture was perfect and the flavor was wonderful! 

Southwestern Potato Salad Recipe
Adapted from Delightfully Dowling

2 1/2 lbs. potatoes
1 - 6 oz. cup Greek lowfat yogurt
1/3 cup mayo, light
2 tbsp. honey mustard
2 tbsp. lime juice
2 tbsp. Ancho chile powder
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
3 plum tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 jalapeno, finely diced
3 green onions, thinly sliced
1 small red onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Black pepper

1. Put the potatoes in a large pot & add enough cold water to cover. add 1 tbsp. salt & bring to a boil over high heat. Cook until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork, 12-15 minutes.

2. Drain well, let cool slightly, & slice 1/4" thick. Set aside.
3. Stir together the yogurt, mayo, mustard, lime juice, ancho powder, cayenne, tomato, cilantro, jalapeno, green onions, red onion, & garlic in a medium bowl. pour the mixture over the potatoes & mix gently until combined. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Total calories = 1555 calories
8 heaping cups = 194 calories per serving

One Year Ago...

Tomatillo Salsa

Calories calculated from Some numbers are approximate and rounded.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Lasagna

I was excited when I saw this recipe.  Another way to use my Franks Buffalo Sauce!  Yea!

I think I scared my husband when he tasted it though.  He got home late and I didn't tell him what it was when he grabbed a piece.  I think he was expecting regular old lasagna. This threw him for a loop!

He liked it but just wasn't expecting the hot sauce and pepperjack flavor.

This is one of my higher calorie meals so it wouldn't be something that we'd eat all the time (though it was so good, I could eat it all the time!)

The flavor was perfect, not too spicy. Just the right amount of kick.  :-)

Buffalo Chicken Lasagna Recipe
Adapted from Prevention RD

12 lasagna noodles, uncooked
1 1/2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breast
1 large onion, diced
3 cups spaghetti sauce
1 cup Franks buffalo wing sauce
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
1 1/2 cups water
15 oz. ricotta cheese, low fat
2 eggs
6 slices pepperjack cheese

Cook chicken in pan on medium high heat with 1/2 cup of Franks hot sauce. Cook until shreddable.  You will need to add some water so it won't stick.  Shred chicken.  Add onion to pan and cook for a few minutes to soften.  Add shredded chicken and the other 1/2 cup Franks hot sauce.  Stir and heat for a few minutes.  Add spaghetti sauce and water and stir. 

In another bowl, combine ricotta and egg together. 

Spread 1 cup of sauce on the bottom of pan.  Arrange 4 noodles over the sauce.  Spread more of the sauce, then a layer of ricotta, 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese.  Add another layer of sauce, noodles, ricotta, and mozzarella, noodles and ending with the sauce.

 Cover and bake 70 minutes. Uncover and place cheese slices on top, then bake for another 15 minutes uncovered. Let stand 10-15 minutes before serving.  

Total calories = 4300
8 servings = 538 calories per serving

One Year Ago...

Pasta Rotini with Eggplant Tomato Sauce

Calories calculated from Some numbers are approximate and rounded.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Quinoa & Vegetable Bake

One of the things that I don't like about egg bake casseroles is the crust.  You put a whole bunch of healthy things in a pan - over a crust that often doubles the calories.  Tasty, but just not as healthy.

That's why I loved the idea of this quinoa crust.  Quinoa is tasty, filling and healthy!

I love how versatile this is as well, you can sub different vegetables, different cheeses, whatever.  It's good. 

It makes a great breakfast, brunch or dinner. It's just really good.

Quinoa & Vegetable Bake Recipe
Adapted from Dinner at Christinas

3 cups cooked quinoa, somewhat cooled
1 egg + 2 egg whites
Cheddar cheese, 2 oz. shredded
Salt and pepper, to taste

1 cup frozen chopped spinach, thawed and moisture strained out
1 red pepper, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
1 tbsp. garlic, minced
6 eggs + 6 egg whites
Cheddar cheese, 2 oz. grated
1/2 cup ricotta cheese, part skim
Salt and pepper to taste

Beat egg in a medium bowl for the crust.  Fold in the quinoa and cheese.  Season with salt and pepper. Spray a 9 x 13 in. pan with cooking spray and sump the crust mix into the pan.  Carefully form the crust along the bottom of the dish and up the sides.

In a large bowl, add the veggies and the cheese.  You can pretty much use whatever veggies you like or have in the frig.  Beat the eggs and egg whites in the bowl you used for the crust.  Add eggs to the veggies and add ricotta cheese and stir until everything is mixed.  Season with salt and pepper.

Pour the egg/veggie mixture into the crust. Pop in the oven, uncovered for about 40 minutes. Check the center for doneness with a knife.  Let stand a few minutes before cutting into. 

Total calories = 2261 calories
8 huge servings = 283 calories per serving

One Year Ago...

Taco Seasoned Meat

Calories calculated from Some numbers are approximate and rounded.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Menu Plan Monday ~ September 12 - September 18, 2011

So we're taking a short vacation to Duluth, MN and Gooseberry Falls this week.  It's only about 2 hours away and it's the perfect time of year.  The trees are just starting to change colors and the weather is cool but still gorgeous.  That's the beauty of homeschool, we can take off whenever we want.  The school work will get caught up eventually.

Monday: Chicken Shawarma Pita Sandwiches

Tuesday: Chipotle Bean Burritos

Wednesday:  Vacation

Thursday: Vacation

Friday: Vacation

Saturday: Vacation

Sunday: Vacation

This is linked with Menu Plan Monday at I'm an Organizing Junkie

One Year Ago...

Cinnamon Peach Cottage Cheese Pancakes

Friday, September 9, 2011

Peach Mango Popsicles

Mangos just taste like summer, don't they??  Well, summer is coming to a close and I couldn't resist buying some mango's for some awesome popsicles.

All the kids here love mangos and they loved them as popsicles even more!  Even the little guy, we gave him a taste, then he grabbed the popsicle and ran! 

Peach Mango Popsicles

2 large mangos, peeled and chopped
1 can of peaches, drained (or use fresh)
2 tbsp. sugar
2 - 3 tbsp. juice from peach can (or water)
1 1/2 tbsp. lemon juice (or to taste)
Puree everything in a food processor. Taste and adjust amount of sugar and water to taste. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze overnight. Enjoy.

One Year Ago...

Zucchini Fritters

Monday, September 5, 2011

Polynesian Chicken Salad

As a ginormous fan of chicken salad, I am always on the look out for a good recipe.  I also love to try to make it as healthy as possible. 

I took this gorgeous salad from Stone Creek Market and subbed some of the mayo for greek yogurt and used light mayo and light sour cream.  The results were fantastic!  I loved it!  It was light and refreshing and super delicious!

Tropical Chicken Salad
Adapted from Stone Creek Market

1 8 oz. package of shell shaped pasta, cooked, rinsed and drained, (I used gluten free)

2 cups cooked/shredded chicken or you can use drained chicken from the can
1 8 oz. can drained pineapple, I used chunks but cut them (save the juice for dressing)
1 10 oz. can drained mandarin oranges, I gave them a rough chop
3/4 cup chopped celery
2 tablespoons chopped green onion
1/2 cup of your choice of chopped nuts (walnut, pecan, cashew)

Cook, rinse, drain and cool pasta. In a large bowl combine all above salad ingredients.

Mix dressing in a separate bowl:

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup sour cream
2-3 tablespoons reserved pineapple juice (to thin dressing)
1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste

Add dressing to pasta salad, fold in to blend. Cover salad and chill for at least 2 hours.

One Year Ago...

Salsa Bacon Baked Beans

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Menu Plan Monday ~ September 5 - September 11, 2011

Monday: Spicy Mexican Torte

Tuesday: Chicken with Spicy Peach BBQ Sauce

Wednesday: Savory Garlic Marinated Steaks & Garlic Smashed Potatoes

Thursday: Spaghetti

Friday:  Peanut Butter Granola with yogurt & eggs

Saturday: Apple Dumplings (project with the kids)

Sunday: Crockpot falafel


This is linked with Menu Plan Monday over at I'm an Organizing Junkie