Tag Archives: cheese

Smothered Burritos

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Smothered Burritos

   

I find myself drooling over Mexican food pictures quite often and wishing someone would invent a drone service to deliver endless chips and salsa, chimichangas, and margaritas to my doorstep. Because at this point in my life with two small children, we almost never go out to eat. So, to make the best of it, I try to make whatever I’m craving at home, which is probably better in the long run since it’s cheaper and healthier that way. Plus, no one tries to charge me $14 for a margarita around here either! 

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground meat (whatever you’re into these days)
  • 1 package of taco seasoning
  • 1/2 sweet onion chopped
  • 3 mini bell peppers chopped (or 1 regular bell pepper)
  • 1 jalapeƱo chopped (seeded and deveined) 
  • 3/4 c water
  • 16 oz Velveeta
  • 1 can Rotel (drained)
  • 1 can diced green chilies or 4 roasted green chiles chopped *In Texas it’s easy to find these year round at the Mexican grocery stores freshly roasted. But canned versions are found practically everywhere and just as good.
  • 1/2 c milk
  • Tortillas 
  • Garnishes like lettuce, tomatoes, and sour cream

1. Put your chopped peppers and onion into a skillet and drizzle with olive oil. I like to cook these about 10 minutes on medium high heat to give them a head start. 

  
  
  
2. Now add your ground meat to the pan and cook until browned.

  
3. Now drain off any excess fat from the pan. I find it’s easiest to do this with a metal dinner spoon.

  
4. Now add your taco seasoning and 3/4 c water. Bring to a boil, then turn to simmer and stir frequently. It will be done in about 5 minutes.

  
 
 
5. To make the cheese sauce, break up your 16 oz Velveeta and put in a sauce pot over medium heat and add your green chiles, drained Rotel, and milk. Stir frequently to help cheese melt and incorporate with everything. Mmm cheeeeeese šŸ™‚

  
  
  
6. Now it’s time to stuff, roll, and smother your burritos! Don’t be afraid to drown them puppies! Yum! 

  
   
 

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Acorn Squash

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Acorn Squash

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If you’re anything like me, acorn squash is probably a bit foreign. I know the first time I decided to try one, I had no idea how hard they were to cut into and that I should’ve sharpened my knife first. I didn’t know what it would taste like and wasn’t sure if I would like it because I know I don’t care for butternut squash. But boy, was I surprised at how delicious it was! Do you like Yukon gold potatoes? If so, you’ll love acorn squash. Do you love mashed potatoes or baked potatoes? That’s how I want you to think of acorn squash. Not that horrible cauliflower substitution for mashed potatoes, but a deliciously creamy and healthy substitution for a potato obsession. This recipe will be like healthy mashed potatoes, but feel free to change it up and serve with cheese and a little sour cream for a “baked potato” version!

Ingredients:
Acorn squash
Olive oil
Garlic salt
Pepper
1 T butter

1. First and most important, sharpen your biggest kitchen knife. If you have a dull knife, you won’t cut through this bad boy, trust me on that.

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2. Now you’re going to scoop out the seeds. I love my grapefruit spoon for this, but a regular spoon will work too if you don’t have one.

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3. Now put your acorn halves on a baking sheet and drizzle olive oil on both sides.

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4. Now bake on your center rack in a 400 degree oven for about an hour. You’ll know it’s done when you can easily stick a knife in it just like a baked potato.

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5. Now scoop out the inside of the squash into a mixing bowl. Add garlic salt and pepper to taste and your tablespoon of butter.

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6. Mix together and serve just like mashed potatoes! Soooo good!

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Creamy Spinach With Caramelized Onions

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Creamy Spinach With Caramelized Onions

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This is definitely one of our favorite sides in our house. So delicious and cheesy and perfect! It’s a perfect side dish, but also something fun to stuff chicken with if you want to try something different!

Ingredients:
2 boxes frozen spinach drained
1 sweet onion
1 garlic clove
1/2 c mozzarella cheese
1/2 c cheddar cheese
2 oz cream cheese
2 T butter
1/4 c milk
1 T flour
Salt, pepper, cayenne pepper

1. Chop your onion and garlic and put in your skillet or Dutch oven with butter and season with salt, pepper, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Keep it on medium heat and cook for about ten minutes.

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2. Meanwhile, defrost your frozen spinach. I had taken mine out earlier in the day, but you can defrost it easily in the microwave.

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3. Place your spinach in a colander and squeeze all the water out with your hands. You will be surprised how much water comes out!

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4. Once your onions look golden and delicious, add your flour and give it a stir. Let it cook 2-3 minutes.

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5. Now turn down the heat a bit and add your squeezed out spinach, cheeses, and milk.

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6. Stir it around until everything is melted and combined. I like to add a little more salt and pepper here too.

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Enjoy šŸ™‚

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Make Ahead Breakfast Burritos

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Make Ahead Breakfast Burritos

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My husband loves breakfast burritos, and these are a great make ahead breakfast thing for him to grab on his way out the door every morning. Just keep them in the freezer and reheat one whenever you want it. This recipe makes a dozen burritos.

Ingredients:

8 eggs
1/2 c milk or half and half
Grated cheese
12 tortillas
3 Yukon gold potatoes
1 jalapeƱo
1 sweet onion
1 garlic clove
1 1lb package of bacon
3 T butter
Salt and pepper
Salsa (optional)

1. First, dump your package of bacon into a large skillet. I’ll be using Old Faithful AKA my cast iron.

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2. Once your bacon is cooked, set it aside on a paper towel to drain and crisp up. Then pour off 90% of your grease into your bacon grease bowl (I know every good Southern cook knows what I’m talkin’ bout here). Keep the rest of the grease in your skillet to help the veggies along.

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3. Add your chopped onion and jalapeƱo and 1 T butter. SautƩ for 10 minutes or so.

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4. Once your onions start turning golden brown, add your diced potatoes and garlic, plus another T of butter. Season it all with salt and pepper.

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5. This is when I started making the eggs. I make them separate because I like to control the amount of egg in each burrito. I don’t like it when it’s all mixed together. The rule of thumb is 1 T of liquid per egg, so that’s 1/2 c (8 T) milk or half and half whipped into the eggs. Also salt and pepper these as well. Add to a skillet that has your last T of butter melted in it. Stir with a soft spatula and watch it all come together.

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6. Once your potatoes are done cooking in the onion and pepper mix (about ten minutes), crumble up your bacon back into the skillet.

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7. Now get yourself a little burrito assembly line going. I pre-cut 12 pieces of foil and had them ready to put my tortilla on, add skillet stuff, eggs, grated cheese, salsa, wrap up, repeat! Yum! Also, you can use any salsa you want, but if you like homemade salsa you can find my recipe here.

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Broccoli Rice Casserole

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Broccoli Rice Casserole

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We’ve all had broccoli rice casserole at one time or another, and this isn’t too far off from the original recipe from Cambell’s. It’s just got a few tweaks to give it some extra dimension and flavor!

Ingredients:
1 lb (16 oz) frozen cut broccoli
8 oz Velveeta
1 onion
1/2 stick butter
1 1/2 c rice
2 oz cream cheese
2 cloves of garlic chopped
Roasted red peppers
1 can cream of chicken and mushroom soup (the blend is really good!)
1/3 c milk
Salt, pepper, cayenne pepper

1. SautƩ your chopped onion in your butter for about 15 minutes until they start to turn golden. Meanwhile, cook your 1 1/2 c rice according to the package instructions.

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2. Put your broccoli in a microwaveable safe container and fill halfway with water. Pop it in your microwave for five minutes to steam them so they’re cooked but still crunchy.

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3. After your onion is mostly cooked, add your chopped garlic and sautĆ© another few minutes. Season it all with salt, pepper, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. I also added chopped up roasted red peppers. I only had a half a jar, but would’ve done a full jar if I had it.

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4. Add your cheeses and cream of mushroom & chicken and cook on low until it’s melted.

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5. Add your milk and it will thin out the sauce a bit.

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6. Now add your broccoli…

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7. …then add your cooked rice šŸ˜„

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8. Now pour this into a buttered casserole dish and bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. So good!

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Green Bean Casserole

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Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean Casserole

Are y’all so excited for Thanksgiving? I can hardly wait! I’ve been looking forward to this delicious meal for the last month, and I’ve been prepping to get everything ready for the big day. This green bean casserole is creamy, cheesy, and so yummy! I am going to freeze it today and then take it out of my freezer Wednesday night before Thanksgiving and let it defrost in the fridge overnight. It’s one of those side dishes I can easily prepare ahead of time so I’m not swamped doing everything the day of.

Ingredients:
2 frozen bags of whole green beans
1 large sweet onion
2 cloves garlic
1/2 stick of butter
1 jar of pimentos or 1/4 c roasted red bell peppers chopped
8 oz Velveeta
2 oz cream cheese
1 can cream of mushroom
6 oz (1 can) French’s fried onions
Salt and pepper
Cayenne pepper (optional)

1. First boil your green beans in salted water for about 10 minutes. You want them cooked all the way through, just not so cooked that they’re soggy and limp like canned green beans. Bleh! Fresh is what makes all the difference in this recipe. Once they’re done, drain and set aside.
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2. Meanwhile, saute your onions, garlic, butter, salt, and pepper over medium heat until they start to turn golden. -13

3. Once your onions are done, add your cream of mushroom, cream cheese, Velveeta, and roasted red peppers to the pan. Also add a pinch of cayenne pepper if you want to. You’ll want to watch this and stir often so it doesn’t burn on the bottom.
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4. Once that’s all melted and smelling delicious, add 1/2 your can of fried onions to this and stir together.
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5. Now add your creamy mix to the green beans and stir together gently.
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6. Lastly, sprinkle the last of the fried onions over the top of the green beans and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.
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Enjoy šŸ™‚

Chicken Spaghetti

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Chicken Spaghetti

Chicken Spaghetti

Who loves cheese? Well then this chicken spaghetti recipe is for you! It has an ooey gooey cheesy sauce that is absolutely delicious! Also, this is a great recipe to chop up veggies into tiny pieces and hide them in the sauce so your kids eat them. I’ve got lots of squash and parsley in my garden right now and my son had no idea either were in this dish. I think you could easily substitute zucchini, peas, chopped asparagus, finely chopped broccoli, finely chopped spinach, or any combination of those veggies into this dish easily!

Ingredients:

1 sweet onion finely chopped

1/4 c roasted red peppers chopped (or two jars pimentos)

Additional chopped veggies of your choice (I used one yellow squash and a few sprigs of chopped parsley)

1/2 lb linguine pasta (I used whole wheat)

4 oz Velveeta

1 can cream of mushroom

2 T cream cheese

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1 package boneless skinless chicken thighs (about 2 lbs)

Chicken bouillon cube

Salt and pepper

2 chopped garlic cloves

3 T butter

1 T garlic and herb seasoning

Additional mozzarella or other Italian cheese for topping

Italian breadcrumbs

1. First we’re going to season the water you’ll be using to cook the chicken (and later the noodles). Bring a pot of water with chicken bouillon and garlic herb seasoning to a boil and add chicken to pot. This will need to boil about 20-25 minutes.

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2. Add chopped onion, chopped veggies of your choice, butter, salt, and pepper to a sautƩ pan. Cook until veggies become tender and add chopped garlic and roasted red peppers and cook a few more minutes on medium high heat.

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3. Turn heat down to medium low and add cream of mushroom, cream cheese, mozzarella, and Velveeta. Stir and allow mixture to melt and come together.

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4. Pull your chicken out of the boiling seasoned water and cut into bite size pieces.

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5. Add chicken to sauce mixture.

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6. Add linguini to the boiling seasoned water and cook using directions on the box. Once it’s done, add the drained pasta to the chicken and cheese mix.

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7. Pour this into a buttered 9×11 baking dish and top with more cheese and sprinkle top with Italian breadcrumbs.

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8. Bake in a 375 degree oven for 20 minutes or until top is golden brown.

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Mmmmmm would you look at that beautiful masterpiece?! It’s delicious with a hunk of crusty garlic bread and large glass of red wine šŸ™‚

Garden Vegetable and Shrimp Alfredo

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Garden Vegetable and Shrimp Alfredo

Garden Vegetable and Shrimp Alfredo

I am so happy when summer veggies start coming up in my garden and love to use them in tons of different recipes. This pasta I made tonight was so yummy, and it uses summer squash and zucchini as the vegetables, but really any veggie you could want would do great in here. Peas, broccoli, asparagus, carrots, etc would be tasty! I also added shrimp for some protein, but feel free to leave it out or substitute grilled chicken instead.

Ingredients:
1/2 lb linguini pasta
1/2 pint (1 cup) heavy whipping cream
5 oz shredded Romano cheese (or use Parmesan if you prefer)
1 zucchini sliced into 1/2 rings
1 squash sliced into 1/2 rings
1 lb shrimp that’s been peeled and de-veined
1 stick of butter
1 clove garlic chopped
1-2 T chopped fresh herbs (I used flat leaf parsley and basil from the garden)
Salt and pepper
Cayenne pepper (optional)

1. First get your water boiling for the pasta and get your veggies started in a separate skillet with 2 T butter. Oh hello there cast iron skillet! You know how much I love you šŸ™‚
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2. Saute on medium-high heat for a few minutes and season with salt and pepper, then add your chopped garlic and saute a few more minutes. Drain into a bowl and set aside.
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3. Next, saute your shrimp in 4 T of butter and season with salt, pepper, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. The last minute they’re in there toss in your freshly chopped herbs. Remove pan from the heat and set aside.
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4. For the sauce, just melt 2 T of butter in a small sauce pot over low to medium heat, and add your heavy whipping cream once it’s melted. Season liberally with salt and pepper, then add 3-4 oz of your shredded Romano cheese.
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5. Once it’s thickened and melted, it will stick to the back of your spoon and become a deliciously sinful white cheesy sauce.
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6. Combine your veggies, pasta, sauce, and shrimp all together and stir.
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7. Top with more freshly chopped herbs and the rest of your shredded cheese, then serve with cheesy garlic bread for a yummy summer Italian meal!
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Duke’s JalapeƱo Havarti Sliders

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Duke’s JalapeƱo Havarti Sliders

Duke's JalapeƱo Havarti Sliders

You may or may not have drawn the logical conclusion that I’ve had a thing for sliders this pregnancy. It’s true! I’m currently obsessed with sliders and have made them several different ways, but I think this one is my favorite! This recipe uses ground turkey and deliciously creamy Havarti cheese, and they’re heavenly. Can’t find Havarti cheese? Pepper jack would work great here too.

Ingredients:
1 package ground turkey (the one I bought was 19 oz, so slightly over a pound)
1 chopped jalapeƱo (seeded and deveined)
About 1/4 c cubed jalapeƱo Havarti cheese
Your favorite burger seasoning
1 heaping T Duke’s mayonnaise

1. Combine mayo, ground turkey, jalapeƱos, cheese, and seasonings in a mixing bowl. I added about a tsp of seasoning into this mix, then sprinkled a little more on each patty after they were assembled. It’s important to note that every Southerner knows that Duke’s mayo is the best mayo you can buy and blows Hellman’s out of the water, so I highly suggest that’s what you use. However, if you can’t find it, any mayo you find will work.
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* That one on the top right is plain for my 2 year old šŸ™‚

2. You can either grill these or cook them on your stovetop. You may have heard me mention I live in a wind tunnel with a vortex that threatens to suck me up every time I step outside to approach my grill, so I did these on the stovetop. Don’t forget to spray your pan like I did, because these puppies stick!
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3. Prepare yourself for the juiciest and most delicious slider ever! I highly recommend serving on a toasted slider bun with a kicked up creamy coleslaw and sliced garden tomato. For a quick coleslaw that’s only semi-homemade I used a creamy coleslaw mix and added a spoonful of Duke’s mayo to the mix, a splash of white vinegar, cayenne pepper, and salt & pepper. It really made it taste like it was totally from scratch and incorporated the Duke’s mayo theme I was going for. Yum! Duke's JalapeƱo Havarti Sliders

Pulled Pork Enchiladas

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Pulled Pork Enchiladas

Pulled Pork Enchiladas

Y’all know I love to buy meat in bulk and cook my fabulous meals on the cheap, but coming up with different recipes with the same meat can be tricky! Making 2-3 different meals with the same meat can help break up your dinners so it feels like you did the whole thing that night brand new. This recipe uses leftover pulled pork, and there are so many different things you can do with pulled pork besides BBQ sandwiches. This and my pork tacos are probably my two favorite Mexican themed dishes to do with leftover pulled pork. Also, there aren’t really measurements for this because each person will obviously have different amounts of leftovers, so I tried to take good pictures of the portions I used so you can get an idea for when you do yours.

Ingredients:
Leftover pulled pork
Tortillas (corn or flour. – both are great, but I used flour here only because that’s what my husband likes)
Caramelized onions
Green chiles
Sour cream
Mixed shredded cheese
Enchilada sauce
Salt and pepper

1. First put all your pulled pork in a mixing bowl. Pure guesstimate here, but I’ll say this looks to be about 4 cups of pulled pork.
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2. Take a few handfuls of your favorite shredded cheese, a few spoonfuls of sour cream, caramelized onions, green chiles, and a little salt and pepper and put it in your mixing bowl.
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3. Give it a big stir and it should look something like this:
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4. Get your enchilada sauce and smear a few spoonfuls at the bottom of a baking dish.
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5. Start stuffing your enchiladas by putting a few spoonfuls of the mixture in the tortillas. It helps if you warm them up a little first by wrapping them in a damp paper towel in the microwave for a little bit to prevent them from cracking.
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6. Once your dish is full of enchiladas, pour your sauce on top and top with shredded cheese.image

7. Cook in a 350 oven for about 40 minutes or until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbly.
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This is a side note, but if you’re one of those people that packs lunches for your husband or likes to have individual freezer homemade meals, I like to do a few individual enchiladas here to be placed in the freezer. Assemble, cover with plastic wrap, then a layer of foil and freeze. To cook later, remove foil/plastic wrap and place in oven/microwave for a tasty individual meal.
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