• Chili Mac

    Ingredients:

    • Olive oil
    • 2 lb. ground chicken or turkey
    • 1 onion, chopped
    • 4-6 garlic cloves, chopped
    • 2 Taco seasoning packs (about 1/2 c.)
    • 1 Chili seasoning pack
    • 2 cans Rotel tomatoes
    • 2 cans red, pinto, black, or kidney beans
    • 4 8oz. cans of tomato sauce
    • 3 c. water
    • 1 lb. elbow macaroni
    • Toppings: cheddar cheese, chipotle, avocado, and/or sour cream

    Directions:

    1. Heat olive oil in skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat and then add ground meat, onion, and garlic.
    2. When the meat is cooked add seasoning through water. Bring to a simmer and cover and simmer for at least 2 hours.
    3. Prepare pasta according to package and add desired toppings.

    Chili Mac:

  • Chicken and Dumplings

    Recipe from The Novice Chef.

    Soup Ingredients:

    • 6 TBSP butter
    • 1 c. chopped yellow onion
    • 1 c. matchstick carrots
    • 1 c. diced celery
    • 4 cloves garlic, minced
    • 3 TBSP all purpose flour
    • 12 oz. (1 can) evaporated milk
    • 32 oz. (1 quart) chicken stock
    • 4 c. shredded cooked chicken
    • 1 TBSP fresh thyme (or 1 tsp. dried thyme)
    • 2 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper (or to taste)
    • salt, to taste

    Dumplings:

    • 2 c. all purpose flour
    • 1 TBSP plus 1 tsp. baking powder
    • 1 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 1 TBSP fresh thyme (or 1 tsp. dried thyme)
    • 3/4 c. (6 oz.) whole milk
    • 4 TBSP butter, melted

    Directions:

    1. In a large heavy bottomed pot (like a dutch oven), melt butter over medium-high heat. 
    2. Add onion, carrots and celery. Cook for 5 minutes, until vegetables being to wilt. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute more.
    3. Add flour and stir to combine. Cook for 1 minute.
    4. Add evaporated milk and chicken stock and quickly stir to combine. 
    5. Bring to a boil and add chicken, thyme, black pepper and salt. Let soup simmer, uncovered, while you make dumplings. 
    6. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, pepper, salt and thyme. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour the milk and butter into the center of it. 
    7. Using a wooden spoon (or rubber spatula), stir together until dough ball forms. If your dough seems too dry, you can add an extra tablespoon of milk. 
    8. Using a large** sized cookie scoop, scoop dough and drop directly into the simmering soup. Place them around the pot, not all in the same place. 
    9. Once all dumplings have been added, gently press them down so the soup runs over just the tops of them. 
    10. Place the lid on your pot and lower the heat a little to a low simmer (you don’t want the bottom of the soup to burn but also want the soup to still be simmering to cook the dumplings). 
    11. Cook for 15 minutes, gently stir the soup/dumplings and then cut one dumpling in half to make sure they are cooked through.
    12. If the dumplings are cooked through, serve hot! If not, cook an additional 2-3 minutes and check again. 

    Chicken and Dumplings:

  • Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup

    Recipe adapted from Balancing Motherhood. Takes about 45 minutes – 1 hour from start to finish.

    Ingredients:

    • 3-4  chicken breasts (about 1.5-2 lbs.)
    • Water to cover chicken in the Instant Pot
    • 3 TBSP butter 
    • 3 carrots full size, chopped
    • 4 celery stalks, chopped
    • 1 small onion, chopped
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 2 inch knob of ginger, sliced
    • 1 TBSP Italian seasoning
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • 64 oz. chicken broth
    • 8 oz. wide noodles
    • 1 bay leaf

    Directions:

    1. Place chicken in Instant Pot and cover with water; place lid on Instant Pot and set to manual cook for 8 minutes. When 8 minutes is up, quick release. Remove chicken and shred or chop and set aside. Rinse Instant Pot.
    2. Meanwhile, chop carrots, celery, onion, garlic and ginger.
    3. After the chicken is cooked and removed from the Instant Pot, turn the pot to saute, and when the pot says HOT, add the butter. Once the butter melts, add the carrots, celery, and onion, and saute for 5 minutes.
    4. After 5 minutes, add the garlic, ginger, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper. Then add the broth, cooked chicken, egg noodles, and bay leaf. Set Instant Pot to manual for 4 minutes, and then quick release. Remove bay leaf and sliced ginger.
    5. Taste and adjust seasoning, as necessary.

    Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup:

  • Cincinnati Chili

    Recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest.

    Ingredients:

    • 1 TBSP olive oil
    • 2 lbs. lean ground beef, chicken, or turkey
    • 1 small onion, chopped
    • 1 TBSP chili powder
    • 1 TBSP smoked paprika
    • 1 TBSP unsweetened dark chocolate cocoa powder
    • 2 tsp. ground cumin
    • 1 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
    • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
    • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp. cayenne
    • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    • 2 c. chicken broth
    • 1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
    • 2 (8 oz.) cans tomato paste
    • 2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
    • 1 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
    • 2 bay leaves
    • Sugar to taste (about 1 TBSP)
    • Serve over pasta with: shredded sharp cheddar cheese, chopped onions, and kidney beans 

    Directions:

    1. Heat a large heavy bottom soup pot over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the onion and cook about 5 minutes or until it begins to caramelize around the edges. Use your hands to crumble the ground meat into the pot. Brown the meat, breaking up the meat as you go.
    2. Once the meat is browned, drain fat, if necessary, and then add in the chili powder, smoked paprika, cocoa powder, cumin, allspice, cloves, salt, cayenne, cinnamon and garlic powder. Give it a good stir and let cook about a minute or two. Add the chicken broth, tomatoes, tomato paste, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, and sugar.
    3. Stir everything to combine. Simmer, covered for at least 3 hours or up to all day over low heat. The longer the better. Alternatively you can transfer the chili to a crockpot and cook on low all day.
    4. Serve over pasta with cheese, onions, and kidney beans.

    Cincinnati Chili:

  • Thai Peanut Chicken Ramen/Drunken Noodles

    If you want this more like ramen, then use the 4 c. broth and up to 4 squares of ramen. If you want this more like a drunken noodle dish, use 4 c. broth and 6 squares of ramen.

    Recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest.

    Ingredients:

    • 4 c. chicken broth
    • 1 can (14 oz.) coconut milk
    • 1/4 c. low sodium soy sauce
    • 2 TBSP fish sauce
    • 2 TBSP honey
    • 1/3 c. creamy peanut butter
    • 1/4 c. Thai red curry paste
    • 3/4 lb. chicken breasts
    • 1 inch fresh ginger, grated
    • 1 clove garlic, minced
    • 4-6 squares ramen noodles
    • juice of 1 lime
    • 3 cups fresh baby spinach
    • 2 red bell peppers, julienned
    • 1/3 c. fresh basil or cilantro, roughly chopped, plus more for serving

    Directions:

    1. In the bowl of the instant pot, combine the chicken broth, coconut milk, soy sauce, fish sauce, honey, peanut butter, and curry paste. Add the chicken, ginger, and garlic. Cover and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes.
    2. Once done cooking, use the natural or quick release and release the steam.
    3. Set the Instant pot to sauté. Shred the chicken, it should fall apart. Stir in the noodles, lime juice, spinach, red peppers, and basil and/or cilantro. Let sit 5 minutes or until the noodles are soft.

    Thai Peanut Chicken Ramen/Drunken Noodles:

  • Instant Pot Chipotle Tortilla Soup

    Recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest

    Ingredients:

    • 2 TBSP olive oil
    • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
    • 4 cloves garlic, minced or grated
    • 2 poblano peppers, seeded and chopped
    • 1 TBSP smoked paprika
    • 2 tsp. ground cumin
    • salt and pepper, to taste
    • 1-2 lb. boneless skinless, chicken breast
    • 2 (14 oz.) cans fire roasted diced tomatoes
    • 4 c. chicken broth
    • juice of 2 limes
    • 1/2 c. fresh cilantro, chopped, plus more for serving
    • Serve with: sliced avocado, lime wedges, cheese, chopped chipotles in adobo, sour cream, and tortilla chips

    Directions:

    1. Set the instant pot to saute. Add the olive oil, onion, garlic, poblano peppers, paprika, cumin, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Cook 5-10 minutes, until very fragrant. Turn the instant pot off. Add the chicken, then stir in the tomatoes and broth. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook on high pressure for 8 minutes.
    2. Once done cooking, use the quick release and release the steam. Shred the chicken using two forks. Stir in the lime juice, and cilantro.
    3. Ladle the soup into bowls. Top, as desired, with sliced avocado, lime wedges, cheese, chopped chipotles in adobo, sour cream, and tortilla chips.

    Instant Pot Chipotle Tortilla Soup:

  • Tomato Soup (Tortellini)

    Turn basic canned tomato soup into delicious tomato soup. Add tortellini if you want or leave that out. Tastes great with grilled cheese.

    Ingredients:

    • 21 oz. condensed tomato soup (I use 1 large family size can)
    • 1-2 c. water
    • 1 c. milk or half and half
    • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
    • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    • 9-16 oz. package cheese tortellini (optional)
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • Parmesan cheese and basil (optional)

    Directions:

    1. In large pot, warm the tomato soup, water and milk or half and half over medium-heat. Add in all of the seasonings and simmer on low for 10 minutes.
    2. Then add in tortellini and simmer another 10 minutes, or until cooked and tender.
    3. Ladle the soup into bowls and add parmesan cheese and basil if desired. Enjoy while warm!

    Tomato Soup (Tortellini):

  • Slow Cooker Tomato Basil Tortellini Soup

    DSC_0863

    This soup is to die for!  It’s delicious served with smoke gouda grilled cheese (our favorite combination)!  All four of us love this soup, and it’s great in the winter AND the summer, which is great because we have so much fresh basil in the summer.

    Ingredients:

    • 2 TBSP olive oil
    • 1 package of petite carrots, diced
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 5 cloves garlic, minced
    • 3 (28 oz.) cans whole Roma tomatoes
    • 1 (32 oz.) carton vegetable broth
    • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil, plus more for garnish
    • 2 bay leaves
    • 1 TBSP granulated sugar (may need to use more–all depends on how sweet your tomatoes are)
    • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
    • 16 oz. refrigerated three cheese tortellini
    • 3/4 cup heavy cream or half and half
    • Grated pecorino Romano cheese for serving

    Directions:

    1. Heat a skillet over medium high heat; add the olive oil, and then add the carrots and onion and saute until soft; then add the garlic and continue cooking for 2 more minutes.
    2. Meanwhile, in a blender, puree the tomatoes until smooth and add to your crockpot.  When the carrots, onion, and garlic are soft add them to the blender and puree until smooth–you can add some of the tomato puree to help the blender along; then add to your crockpot.  Add the vegetable broth through salt and pepper, and stir to combine.  You’ll likely need to adjust the sugar, salt, and pepper after it finishes cooking.
    3. Cook on LOW for 6-7 hours or HIGH for 3-4 hours.  Remove lid and add tortellini and cook for 15 minutes or until tortellini are heated through. Then stir in the cream or half and half, taste and adjust seasoning.
    4. Ladle soup in individual bowls and top with basil and and grated pecorino Romano cheese.

    Slow Cooker Tomato Basil Torellini Soup:
    5star

  • Chicken Posole

    DSC_0539

    This Posole is so easy to make and so good.  Ellie, the pickiest of pickiest eaters ate this dish and she proclaimed it delicious and 5 star worthy!  Wow!!  She did ask “what is that mushy vegetable?”  I told her corn because she “tried” hominy a few days ago and said she didn’t like it, but she liked the “corn” in the Posole.  So in our house we had chicken and corn soup. 😉

    Prepared once again in October, 2018 and this soup was loved by all!

    Recipe adapted from Cooking Light, April 2014

    Ingredients:

    • 10 canned tomatillos or 1.5 lb. fresh dark green tomatillos (about 14 +/-)
    • 1 bunch of cilantro
    • 2 tsp. ground cumin
    • 2 tsp. dried oregano
    • 1 tsp. black pepper
    • 1 TBSP olive oil
    • 1 c. chopped onion
    • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
    • 3 chicken breast halves, cut up in bite size pieces
    • 6-7 c. chicken broth
    • 2 cans hominy, drained
    • Limes, quartered
    • Serve with roasted poblanos and cilantro, optional

    Directions:

    1. If using fresh tomatillos, boil them until they turn color (dark green to army green) and soften; combine tomatillos through black pepper in food processor, and process until almost smooth.
    2. Heat a soup pot oven over medium high heat.  Add oil to pan; swirl to coat.  Add onion and cook for 4 minutes; then add garlic and saute for 30 seconds.
    3. Add the chicken and saute until the outside of the chicken is no longer pink.
    4. Add the tomatillo mixture, broth, and hominy and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until chicken is cooked through.
    5. Serve with limes.

    Chicken Posole:

    5star

  • Crockpot Steak and Black Bean Chili

    DSC_0301

    Oh how we love this chili, and by we I mean all 4 of us! Even the pickiest, who generally won’t eat chili, ate this up (granted she just ate the big chunks of steak, but at least she ate it rather than turning her nose up)!

    This is a true Crockpot chili, and I love that this dish actually cooks all day.  Start it in the morning and 8-10 hours later, dinner is ready!  Definitely can’t beat that for a busy weeknight delicious and hearty dinner.

    Serve with Grandma Clark’s cornbread.

    Ingredients:

    • 2 lbs. boneless beef cubes, for stew
    • 2 heaping tsp. chili powder
    • 1 heaping tsp. garlic powder
    • 1 heaping tsp. ground cumin
    • 1 large onion, chopped
    • 1 large green pepper, chopped
    • 2 (15 oz.) cans black beans
    • 2 (14 1/2 oz.) cans chili-style chopped tomatoes
    • 1 tsp. sugar
    • 1 (6 oz.) cans tomato paste
    • salt and pepper, to taste
    • sour cream
    • shredded cheddar cheese

    Directions:

    1. Cut the beef into 1-inch cubes.
    2. Place beef in slow cooker and turn it on low.
    3. Sprinkle the chili powder, garlic powder and cumin over the meat.
    4. Add onion and green pepper.
    5. Drain and rinse the cans of beans and add them to the slow cooker.
    6. Add tomatoes and sugar.
    7. Cover and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
    8. Uncover and sir in the tomato paste.
    9. Season with salt and pepper
    10. Garnish with sour cream and cheddar cheese

    Crockpot Steak and Black Bean Chili:

    5star