Monday, December 26, 2011

Peppermint Bark Rice Krispie Treats

These are awesome, easy and tasty! I made these for our Family Christmas Party and they were gone in a flash. From, of course, Our Best Bites.

Peppermint Bark Rice Krispie Treats
Recipe by Our Best Bites

1 10.5 ounce bag peppermint mini marshmallows*
4 tablespoons real butter, plus extra to butter pan
5-6 cups rice krispie style cereal (I like mine a little more marshmallowy)
3 tablespoons semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
3 tablespoons white chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil, divided
a few drops (about 1/8 teaspoon) peppermint extract
2-3 medium sized candycanes, crushed

*In place of the peppermint marshmallows, use regular marshmallows and add about 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract to melted marshmallow mixture. Or more to taste, I’m guessing on the amount.

Line a 9×13 pan with foil and lightly butter bottom and about 1 inch up sides.

Melt butter in a very large bowl in the microwave. Add marshmallows and stir to coat. Heat in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. (You can do that whole process on the stovetop as well.) Add rice krispie cereal and stir to evenly combine. With buttered hands, press mixture into prepared pan.

Place white chocolate chips and 1/4 teaspoon oil in a small bowl. Heat in microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Repeat same process with semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips and add a few drops of peppermint extract. Drizzle both chocolates on top of rice krispie treats and sprinkle candy canes on top. Let sit until chocolate is set, place pan in fridge to speed process along. Cut into squares and eat up.

How to Cook a Large Roast

I had to make a roast for our family Christmas party, which fed about 35 people. This is an awesome way to cook your roast if you are cooking for a large crowd. (I need to post this so that I remember how to do it again next year for our Taylor Family Christmas Party).

  1. Rub meat with meat tenderizer
  2. Rub in kosher salt
  3. Mix a packet of French's Marinade with a little water and pour over roast
  4. Place in a large pan and tin foil 3 or 4 times, enough so that no steam with escape and change where the fold is.
  5. Cook at 450 for 4 hours (not frozen)
  6. Stick meat thermometer in to see if it is done. Cover the hole with a rock if you need to put the roast back in the over for longer.

And the roast comes out delicious and moist. I go this recipe from Cindy, who got this recipe from a caterer.

If have any questions while you are cooking, just post a comment or call me.

Turkey Brine

With the help of my husband, who is so awesome in the kitchen, I made my first turkey dinner this Christmas. I brined the turkey the night before and honestly it made the turkey to DIE for. It was the best turkey I have tasted. It made the meat so moist and the gravy so tasty.

Turkey Brine (From


  • 1 gallon vegetable broth
  • 1 cup sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon crushed dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon dried sage
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon dried savory
  • 1 gallon ice water


  1. In a large stock pot, combine the vegetable broth, sea salt, rosemary, sage, thyme, and savory. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently to be sure salt is dissolved. Remove from heat, and let cool to room temperature.
  2. When the broth mixture is cool, pour it into a clean 5 gallon bucket. Stir in the ice water.
  3. Wash and dry your turkey. Make sure you have removed the innards. Place the turkey, breast down, into the brine. Make sure that the cavity gets filled. Place the bucket in the refrigerator overnight.
  4. Remove the turkey carefully draining off the excess brine and pat dry. Discard excess brine.
  5. Cook the turkey as desired reserving the drippings for gravy. Keep in mind that brined turkeys cook 20 to 30 minutes faster so watch the temperature gauge.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Chicken noodle soup

Like taco soup, I'm sure there are a million and one chicken noodle soup recipes. Well I'm here to tell you that this one tops them all for taste and ease. I found this recipe in a old random recipe book my mom had from my great- aunts relief society or something like that and I probably make it at least twice a month. Especially in the winter. I usually make some baking powder biscuits to go with it. I buy a rotisserie chicken and boil the bones and skin to get yummy flavorful broth but if your not into that kind of thing used the canned stuff. Sorry for no picture but I'm lame like that.

Chicken Noodle Soup

4 cups chicken broth
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 cooked chicken breasts, cut in pieces (I use the rotisserie chicken)
3 cups cut raw carrot (however big you want the pieces)
2 stalks celery, diced
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp basil
1/2 soup can water
2 cups raw noodles (I break up spaghetti or linguine noodles in thirds)

Place all ingredients in crockpot. Mix and cook on low setting for 4-5 hours. *Unless you want soggy noodles, don't add noodles until about the last 1-2 hours). You can also make this on the stove. Just put it all into a big pot and let boil until the veggies and noodles are cooked. DELISH!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Taco Soup!!!

I'm sure everyone has their own tried, tested and true Taco Soup recipes... but I'll post mine anyway. I've  been seriously addicted (like, "I may need an intervention" type of addicted) to Taco soup lately. A little background info: I hated Taco soup for 24 years. My Mom made it a lot, or at least it seemed like she did... probably because it was something I never looked forward to. Truth be told, I don't even think I had ever actually TASTED it. I just assumed because it had onions... corn... beans... basically everything I didn't like (I was piiiiiii-cky) that I wouldn't like it.

Last year, however, things changed. We went to dinner at a friends house and they were having.... [gulp]... Taco Soup. Since I didn't want to be a jerkface by refusing to eat it, I decided I would spoon out a nice small bowl for myself and force it down my gullet.

I had three huge bowls.

It. Was. Delicious. I got the recipe, tweaked it a bit, and have made it MORE times than I care to admit in the last 2 months. Gotta make up for all those years of refusing to eat it.

Enough talk. To the recipe!


  • 2-ish lbs Ground Beef
  • 1 pkg (or ¼ cup) Taco seasoning
  • 1 pkg Ranch powder mix
  • 1 onion (chopped.. sliced... however you like it!)
  • 1-2 12oz cans corn
  • 1 14oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 small can chopped green chilies (Old El Paso - usually in the Taco "supplies" area) 
  • 2 14oz cans sliced stewed tomatoes (sometimes I can't find the sliced ones... so I just cut them up with my cooking scissors once they're in the soup... lol)
  • 1 14oz can tomato sauce
  • 2 19oz cans kidney beans *the BEST part!*

In a large pot brown meat, drain, stir in chopped onions (I like to saute them for a bit, 'cause I'm not a fan of undercooked onions) and add all other ingredients plus 1 cup of water. Do NOT drain the canned goods, add all the canned juices into the soup! Cook until heated or until onions are tender. I heat mine until it starts boiling. There's nothing better than a steaming hot, burn your tongue, bowl of soup! Serve with fritos or doritos, cheese, and nice big dollop of sour cream (it's a MUST, people!)... THEN ENJOY! Make sure you have a napkin handy, 'cause those chilies will make your nose run like crazy.  Haha!

You'll have leftovers... 'cause it makes a lot. But like most other soups, it's even BETTER the next day!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Candy Cane Kiss Cookies

I don't even want to post these because they are so good. Because I want to keep this secret to myself. But this secret isn't really mine, it is on our best bites blog, AND Krystyn brought these over last Christmas. But honestly, seriously I believe these are the best cookies I have tasted. Because I LOVE chocolate/mint combo. Believe me, these won't last long.

P.S. I found the Candy Cane Kisses at Shoppers and at Safeway.

Candy Cane Kiss Cookies
Recipe by Our Best Bites

1/2 c. butter-flavored shortening (I just used regular shortening and I couldn't even taste the difference)
1/2 c. real butter
1 c. brown sugar
1 c. white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
optional: 1 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 c. flour, lightly spooned into measuring cups and leveled with a knife
1/4 c. + 2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 c. dark chocolate chips
48 Hershey’s Candy Cane Kisses, unwrapped

Preheat oven to 350.

Cream together softened butter, shortening, brown sugar, and white sugar for 1-2 minutes on medium-high speed or until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla. Meanwhile, combine the baking powder, baking soda, salt, flour, and cocoa powder. Add to the butter/sugar mixture and mix until combined. Mix in the chocolate chips.

Drop the dough by the tablespoonful onto an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the centers are set but still soft. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 1-2 minutes. Top each cookie with an unwrapped Candy Cane Kiss. Allow to cool completely, long enough for the Kiss to harden. If necessary, after the cookies have cooled, they can be placed in the refrigerator or freezer to re-solidify the Kiss.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Spinach Mandarin Poppy Seed Salad

This salad is super good. I just made it tonight for supper. It is from Our Best Bites, but I first saw it on Christy Bevan's blog. When I made it today I only had spinach, used cheddar cheese instead of mozza, and used just that packaged bacon from Costco. The red onion and avocado really make it a nice salad! Don't overdress this salad. I did that first time I made this salad! It was way too strong and soggy!

Spinach Mandarin Poppy Seed Salad
Recipe from Our Best Bites
8 oz. (1/2 bag) of baby spinach
1/2-1 head Romaine lettuce, chopped
1/2 thinly sliced medium red onion
1 large avocado, cubed
8 oz. mozzarella or Swiss cheese, shredded
1 12-oz. package bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 large can Mandarin oranges, drained
Combine all ingredients except dressing in a large bowl. When ready to serve, toss with desired amount of salad dressing and serve immediately. If you anticipate leftovers, just let your eaters dress their own salads because the dressing will make the greens wilt.

Poppy Seed Dressing
Recipe from Our Best Bites

1/3 c. white vinegar
1 tsp. Kosher salt
A few turns of freshly ground black pepper
3/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. mustard
1 green onion, ends removed (both the “hairy” end and where the green part starts to get floppy)
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 tsp. poppy seeds

In a blender, combine vinegar, salt, pepper, sugar, and mustard. While the blender is running, add the green onion. Continue running the blender and add the oil in a steady stream and is fully incorporated into the dressing.

Pour the dressing into a serving or storage container and whisk in poppy seeds. Serve over leafy greens.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Pork Chops with Apples & Creamy Bacon Grits

I made these pork chops last night and they were delicious. Really good and easy. I didn't make them with the grits, I made mashed potatoes instead. I honestly don't even know what grits are. So if you have some pork chops in the freezer that you don't know what to with, try out this recipe! And if you do want to make the grits, click on the title and you will find the recipe there. And if you do make the grits, let me know how they taste! I got this recipe from The Pioneer Woman.

Pork Chops with Apples & Creamy Bacon Grits


  • 6 whole Boneless Pork Chops, About 1/2-inch Thick
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 whole Gala Apples, Diced
  • 1/2 cup Dry White Wine (I used white wine vinegar instead)
  • 2 teaspoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 3/4 cups Pure Maple Syrup
  • 1 dash Salt
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • Creamy Bacon-Cheese Grits (see My Tasty Kitchen Recipe)

Preparation Instructions

Note: See my TastyKitchen recipe box for my Creamy Bacon Cheese Grits recipe.

Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and butter and heat until butter in melted.

Salt and pepper both sides of pork chops. Brown them on both sides until nice and golden. Remove pork chops from the skillet and set on a separate plate.

Reduce heat to medium. Add apples and stir to combine them with the oil, and butter that remains in the pan. Pour in wine and vinegar, then whisk along the bottom of the pan to deglaze it. Cook until liquid is reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Pour in the maple syrup, then add a dash of salt and pepper. Stir, then return pork chops to the pan. Cover the pan and simmer on low for 20 minutes.

Serve pork chops on top of a generous helping of Creamy Cheese Grits (mashed potatoes are good, too) and spoon the apple-maple sauce over the top, allowing the liquid to drip over the grits.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Sweet and Sour Pork

I have to admit, I am not a huge Chinese food fan. It is just not that appetizing for me to go to a Chinese food buffet and eat lukewarm deep fried food. Brad, on the other hand, LOVES Chinese food. So to satisfy his cravings he will usually have to make Chinese food at home.

On Sunday Brad made this recipe and it was AMAZING! Seriously it was soooo good. We used pork tenderloin and it made a huge difference. If you have the time, make this recipe.

Sweet and Sour Pork (from Better Homes and Gardens Recipe Book)

12 ounces lean boneless prok
2 TBSP mirin or dry sherry (we used rice vinegar)
2 TBSP soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil

1 cup chicken broth
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup rice vinegar
4 tsp cornstarch
1 TBSP soy sauce
cooking oil or shortening for deep-fat frying
1 beaten egg
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup chicken broth

1 TBSP cooking oil
1 clove garlic, minced
3 med carrots, thinly biased sliced (1 1/2 cups)
1 med green sweet pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces
3 green onions, bias sliced into 1-inch pieces
1 8 -ounce can pineapple chunks, drained
3 cups hot cooked rice

1. Trim fat from pork. Cut pork into 3/4-inch cubes, place in a bowl for marinade, stir together mirin, the 2 TBSP soy sauce, and sesame oil. Pour over pork. Toss to coat. Cover, let stand at room temp for 20 minutes.
2. For sauce, stir together the 1 cup broth, sugar, vinegar, the 4 tsp cornstarch, and the 1 TBSP soy sauce. Set aside. In a wok or large saucepan heat 1 1/2 to 2 inches of cooking oil or shortening to 365 degrees fer (or just REALLY HOT, boiling). Meanwhile for batter, in a bowl stir together egg, the 1/2 cup cornstarch, flour and the 1/2 cup broth until smooth.
3.Drain pork; pat dry. Dip pork into batter, swirling to coat. Fry a few pieces of pork at a time in hot oil for 4-5 min or until golden and no pink remains. Remove from oil. Drain on paper towels. Keep pork warm in a 300 oven while frying remaining pork.
4. Pour the 1 TBSP oil into a large skillet. (Add more oil as needed during cooking.) Preheat over med-high heat. Cook and stir garlic in hot oil 15 seconds. Add carrots, sweet peppers, and green onions; cook and stir 4-5 min or until crisp-tender. Remove vegetables from skillet. Stir sauce; add to skillet. Cook and stir until bubbly. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Stir in pineapple and cooked vegetables. Cook and stir about 1 minute or until hot. Stir in pork. Server over rice.
Serves 4

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Cindy's Dressing

Brad's mom makes the most amazing dressing! It is seriously the best I have ever tasted. It is not soggy and all mushed together like most, it is just delicious. I wanted to write it down because I am planning on making it for Christmas turkey dinner and I don't want to lose this recipe!

If you know Cindy, her recipes are all just a dabble of this, a scoop of this, a handful of these. If you plan on making this recipe, keep that in mind and really you can't go wrong with this recipe!

Dressing (makes lots, probably enough for about 20 people)

1 cup of butter
3 cups celery
2 onions chopped
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

fry this on low in a skillet for about 1/2 hour and then add:

About 6 cups of dry bread pieces
stir and add
1/2 cup cream + one egg, drizzle over dressing
2-3tsp sage
2 grated or chopped apples

steam for 1-2 hours stirring occasionally then add

2 boxes of stove top (prepared)
1 cup of craisins (more or less, depends on how much you like them)

Stir all together and serve! I hope this makes sense, you can call me if you want some help, or call Brad's mom!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Perfectly Shredded Chicken

Maybe I'm the last one to get the memo, and maybe I'm just repeating an amazing idea that everyone already knows. I don't care. I'll still share!

I love to put shredded chicken in pita pockets. Lettuce, cheese and ranch dressing, too. It's delicious. BUT.. I hate shredding the chicken! It takes a life time. So annoying.

Then. The heavens opened and pinterest saved the day.

Perfectly shredded chicken in 20 seconds.

I popped my chicken in the slow cooker, on high, for a good 4 hrs. Left it in there on "warm" until I was ready to shred the crap out of it. Then, wham-bam. 20 seconds later, it was done. I don't actually have a Kitchenaid, but my Bosch works JUST as well with the cookie paddle attachment. So awesome!!! A surefire cure for those "chicken shredding" woes.

Here's the link to the source.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Pumpkin Pie Milkshake

I've been super obsessed with everything PUMPKIN lately. I even stocked up on pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie filling. Mmmm! Anyway. Found this recipe on and honestly couldn't stop myself from making it. Although... I tried to keep it a little less fattening, so I just used milk and ice cubes instead of icecream. STILL good, but it probably would have been even tastier with the icecream. Try it!

Pumpkin Pie Milkshake
Recipe by Our Best Bites

1/3 C pumpkin, canned or homemade
1/4 – 1/2 C milk
1/4 t vanilla
1/2 t cinnamon
1/16 t cloves (just use a 1/8 t measure and fill it half way, or do a pinch)
1/16 t nutmeg
2 T brown sugar
2 C vanilla ice cream
1-2 graham crackers

Pop everything but graham crackers in a blender. Start with 1/4 C milk and then slowly add more if needed to make the blender process it all. I used somewhere between 1/4-1/2 C.  Sprinkle with crushed graham cracker crumbs before serving.

A note about blenders: Here’s the problem with making thick, diner style milkshakes at home: A lot of times you have to add so much milk to the thing to get the blender to process that it turns into a milk-slushie instead. Or you have to blend and plunge, blend and plunge, etc. You know the drill, right? So if you have any trouble with your blender, I would recommend blending everything but the ice cream first and then mashing it into the ice cream by hand (well, with a hand. Holding a fork or spoon :) If your scooped ice cream sits out at room temp while you measure the other things and get them all ready, then by the time you mash it all together it should be a good consistency.

Lemon Feta Chicken with Oregano

Servings: 4 Serving Size: 2 thighs

  • 8 skinless chicken thighs (I used 4 breasts instead and filleted them)
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 3 tsp oregano
  • salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled
Preheat oven to 375°. Trim all fat off chicken. Season chicken with salt, pepper, oregano, garlic powder, and lemon juice. Place in a roasting pan and bake for about 35 - 40 minutes. When chicken is cooked, remove from the oven and sprinkle with feta.

Broil on low for about 2-3 minutes, until cheese is golden brown (careful not to burn).

I've been 90% SouthBeach-ing it for the past few days (gotta lose this preggo weight!!!) so I went browsing through the site that Rachelle posted about earlier. Found this yummo chicken recipe, and gave it a try. Super easy, super good.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

My Mom gave me a pumpkin a couple of weeks ago and I wanted find a recipe to use it up. I had to make the snack for preschool today so I googled this recipe and voila, pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. These are really good, Brad loved them, Ben wanted to eat them for dessert and the teacher at preschool said the kids loved them too.

If you have never cooked a pumpkin before I used this site. (Because I had never cooked a pumpkin before! It is surprisingly easy...exactly like cooking a squash (duh!)) You cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, cut in smaller pieces, put in a covered dish with a little water, and cook in the microwave or oven. (The site gives more step by step instructions, just click on the pdf link). Easy-peasy. And it tastes so much better than canned!

I used milk chocolate chips for recipe. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins:
Original Recipe Yield
12 small muffins


  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease and flour muffin pan or use paper liners.
  2. Mix sugar, oil, eggs. Add pumpkin and water. In separate bowl mix together the baking flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices and salt.. Add wet mixture and stir in chocolate chips.
  3. Fill muffin cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Tortellini Soup

  • 1 lb Italian Sausage (my mom gets the stuff that's packaged like ground beef, but I could only find the actual sausages. So I just took off the sausage wrappings and broke it into pieces)
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced OR 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 5 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 large can (~795ml) chopped/diced tomatoes, blended
  • 1 small can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • 1½ cups sliced zucchini
  • small package of tortellini
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley
  • 1 medium green pepper
  • grated Parmesan cheese

1. Brown sausage in frying pan. Once it's cooked, place it in a large pot (sans drippings).
2. In frying pan; sauté onions and garlic in drippings - then add to pot.
3. In pot: add beef broth, 1 cup water, blended tomatoes, tomato sauce, chopped carrots, basil and oregano.
4. cut green pepper in half, remove seeds, and add both halves whole (this is just for the flavoring. If you want to keep the green pepper IN the soup, just chop it and obviously don't remove it at the end).
5. bring to boil and simmer for 30 mins.
6. Cook tortellini separately while soup is simmering.
7. During the last 15 mins: add zuccini and parsley.
8. When soup is done simmering, remove both halves of green pepper (unless you chopped it) and add cooked tortellini - sprinkle with Parmesan cheese to serve.

SO YUMMY!!! This recipe makes a nice BIG pot of soup. Lots of leftovers! Best part: it tastes even BETTER the next day.. and the day after that, too! Enjoy!!!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Beef Enchiladas

These are the yummiest enchiladas out there. They are a good make-ahead meal. I usually double it and throw one pan in the freezer.

1 can tomato soup
1 tbsp chili powder
dash of garlic salt
1/2 can water
1 tsp cumin
6 large tortillas
1 1/2 lb ground beef
1 onion
salt, pepper, garlic
cheddar cheese, grated

1. Fry beef with onion, salt, pepper, and garlic (or garlic powder). Drain and set aside in another bowl.
2. In same pan fry tortillas in a little oil for about 3 seconds on each side. Drain on paper towels.
3. Mix first five ingredients together (I just use the same pan) and beat together with a whisk, heating until just boiling. Remove from heat.
4. Dip each tortilla in sauce and then fill with a spoonful of meet and a handful of cheese. Roll up.
5. Put each filled tortilla in a greased 9 by 13 pan. Pour remaining sauce over top. Sprinkle with cheese.
6. Cover with foil and cook for 15-20 minutes at 350.

Serve with rice. Sometimes I put cooked rice in with the meat and cheese.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Oven Steak Fries

We had these tonight for dinner with BBQ steak and a big salad. They were sooooo good! I tried the original recipe. The crumpled foil trick is awesome because you don't have to flip the fries and they cook evenly! Brad loved them.

From: Our Best Bites.
Oven Steak Fries

4 medium Russet potatoes, washed
2 Tbsp. olive oil

For Orignal Recipe Fries (just call yourself The Colonel), you’ll also need…

1/2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

For Garlic Pepper Fries, you’ll need, in addition to the olive oil and potatoes…

1/2 tsp. freshly-ground black pepper
2 1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1/4 tsp. parsley

Preheat oven to 400. Mix desired spices in a medium bowl. Add olive oil and combine well.

Cut potatoes into 8 wedges each.

Add potato wedges to seasonings and toss to coat.

Lightly crumple some aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet. Spray with cooking spray and then arrange potato wedges on foil. This makes cleanup easy because your potatoes won’t stick and it will also ensures they’re cooked evenly.

Bake at 400 for about 40 minutes. Serve with ketchup, fry sauce, Ranch dressing, honey mustard…the sky’s the limit here!

Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos

Debbie told me about this recipe and it is really tasty!! I love the lime taste in the filling and the crunch of the baked shell.

A few notes: neither Debbie nor I could find "green salsa" and just used regular salsa in the recipe. Also, make sure you fill the taquitos full enough...because I didn't when I made these!!! I tried to use the filling so that it would use up all my 10 small shells (like the recipe says), but I found there wasn't enough filling for 10 taquitos in this recipe, I say maybe 8 or so. This is a great recipe to use leftover chicken.

Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos
Recipe by

1/3 C (3 oz) cream cheese
1/4 C green salsa
1T fresh lime juice
1/2 t cumin
1 t chili powder
1/2 t onion powder
1/4 t granulated garlic
3 T chopped cilantro
2 T sliced green onions

2 C shredded cooked chicken
1 C grated pepperjack cheese

small corn tortillas
kosher salt
cooking spray

Heat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly coat with cooking spray.

Heat cream cheese in the microwave for about 20-30 seconds so it's soft and easy to stir. Add green salsa, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, onion powder and granulated garlic. Stir to combine and then add cilantro and green onions. Add chicken and cheese and combine well.

You can prepare up to this step ahead of time. Just keep the mixture in the fridge.

Work with a few tortillas at a time and heat in the microwave until they are soft enough to roll without cracking. It helps to place them between damp paper towels. Usually 20-30 seconds will do it. If you find yours are cracking when you roll them or come unrolled right away, just try heating them longer and try the paper towel thing.

Place 2-3 T of chicken mixture on the lower third of a tortilla, keeping it about 1/2 inch from the edges.

Then roll it up as tight as you can.

Place seam side down on the baking sheet. Lay all of the taquitos on the baking sheet and make sure they are not touching each other. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray or an oil mister and sprinkle some kosher salt on top.

Place pan in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until crisp and the ends start to get golden brown.

Dip 'em in salsa, sour cream, guacamole, or this dressing.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Dijon Baked Chicken with Rice

If you like Asian food, you will like this recipe. My sister made this for us when we were in Edmonton and I thought it was so tasty! This was just a little spicy, not too HOT (so don't be worried if you look at the hot chili sauce and think your mouth with be one fire when you make this). Is it kid friendly? You decide. If your kids like Asian food, or Indian food or are used to trying different things, then I would give this recipe a whirl. My boys LOVE curry, especially butter chicken.

Sorry this blog hasn't been updated for a while. We decided to do the Southbeach Diet in June. So obviously I wasn't cooking much except salads and steaks on the BBQ. By the way, I really think the diet works because I still haven't gained the weight back that I lost. It is a good diet to change your eating habits and to start eating more healthy.

Here it is:

Dijon Baked Chicken with Rice

10-12 boneless skinless chicken thighs
1 TBSP curry powder
1 TBSP onion flakes
1/2 tsp red crushed chilies
1/2 cup liquid honey
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
1 TBSP soy sauce
1 tsp hot chili saauce, Asian style (can be chili-garlic sauce)

1-1/2 cups rice
3 cups water

1. Unravel thighs to flatten and scrunch together in a large shallow oven-safe pan. Combine ingredients and pour evenly over chicken. Flip the chicken around with a fork until each piece is well coated. End by making sure rough side of the thigh is down. Cover with plastic wrap and refridgerate overnight (you don't have to, but it tastes better).

2. Preheat over 350. Place rice in oven. Turn chicken with a fork and place in preheated oven.

3.Cook 50 min. About half way through cooking time flip chicken over.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Grilled Chicken Bruschetta

Grilled Chicken Bruschetta 
Servings: 4 • Serving Size: 4 oz chicken + tomatoes
Calories: 236.8 • Fat: 8.5 g • Protein: 32.4 g • Carb: 6.8 g • Fiber: 1.3 g • Sugar: 0.5 g
Sodium: 182.9 mg (without the salt)

  • 3 medium vine ripe tomatoes
  • 2 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil leaves, chopped 
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
  • 3 oz part skim mozzarella, diced
  • 1- 1.5lbs chicken breasts (4)
Combine onion, olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper. Set aside a few minutes.
Chop tomatoes and place in a large bowl. Combine with garlic, basil, onion-balsamic combo and additional salt and pepper to taste. Set aside and let it sit at least 10 minutes or as long as overnight. Toss in the cheese when ready to serve.
Season chicken with salt and fresh pepper. Grill the chicken on your indoor or outdoor grill, top with bruschetta and serve. Serve over whole wheat pasta.

The sauce makes a lot, so you could even half the sauce, but its also great to eat the leftovers with a fresh baguette.. bread and bruschetta my favorite! 
*Both me and Jeremy loved this recipe, I served it over whole wheat penne noodles and with steamed brocolli. It was very delicious. The boys don't love chunks of tomatoes so I served the boys just the grilled chicken and the noodles with a little margarine and parmsean cheese and brocolli. They gobbled it up.
Ever since Jeremy has been trying to lose weight (down 28lbs) now! Yea! I have been trying to find new healthy recipes, especially those low on salt and canned food and I came across this site, It has awesome recipes, like this one. I use it all the time. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Homemade Oreo Cookies

Okay, maybe I do make other desserts. And this is one of them. This recipe is awesome. The cookies are chewy and delicious. And the icing divine.

1 Devil Food Cake Mix
3/4 cup shortening
2 eggs

1/2 package cream cheese softened
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup of icing sugar

Mix together until ingredients are combined. Roll into small balls. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes. Slam cookie sheet down on the counter when they come out to make the cookies flat. Let cool. Then put the icing in between the cookies. Keep cookies in fridge until ready to serve. Enjoy!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Mom's Brownies

I don't make many desserts. Cheesecakes, some cookies and these brownies. I usually make these on Sunday maybe once a month or every 2nd month. Or when the missionaries come over and I didn't plan a dessert. But I make these when I feel like a warm, chewy brownie with ice cream. I also make these when I feel like chocolate but I don't have any chocolate but I always have these ingredients. In fact I they are in the oven as we speak for that reason alone. My Mom used to make these when I was a kid.

1 cup of butter
3/4 cup of cocoa
2 cups of sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour

Melt butter & cocoa on stove. Add sugar and mix with a fork or spatula (if you only have a hand mixer I do all the mixing in same pot as I melt the butter). If you have a bosch or whatever else, remove from heat and scoop that butter, cocoa and sugar into a your bosch bowl(or kitchen aide). Beat one egg at a time (this is when the bosch comes in handy because you really want to mix those eggs one at a time, mix each egg for about a minute or as long as you can handle, the more mixing the chewier they are but a minute is about good for each egg). Beat in vanilla. Beat in flour.

Bake at 350 for about 25 minutes. Now you have to check these at 20 minutes because you do not want to overbake. I had a really hot oven in one of the apartments we lived in and I had to bake them at 325 for 23 minutes. But 350 at about 25 minutes should be about average. But check and once the toothpick comes out clean take them out! I always sprinkle icing sugar on the top and serve warm with ice cream! Enjoy.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Cheese buns

First make your typical bun recipe (I use this one from Erin Cahoon). Then instead of forming the dough into buns, you roll it out on a greased surface and spread lots of grated cheddar cheese over it. Then roll it up and cut into sections (just like you would do cinnamon buns but using cheese instead of cinnamon and sugar). Let rise on the pan for 1 hour then bake at 350 for about 15-20 minutes. As soon as they come out of the oven glaze the tops with about 1/4 cup melted butter mixed with a couple tablespoons of Johnny's garlic spread seasoning (you can buy it at Costco but I'm sure garlic powder or something similar would work too). Anyways these taste soooo good. Try it next time you make buns. When I make the bun recipe I use half the dough for regular buns and half the dough for cheese buns. I hope this recipe/post makes sense.


Chicken Parmigiana

1. Rinse about 3-4 chicken breasts in water and then cut them in half.
2. Dip each piece in flour, then egg mixture (I mix 2 eggs with a tbsp of water), then dip in Italian seasoned bread crumbs (I mix some Italian seasoning with bread crumbs), then brown in a couple tablespoons of olive oil on each side.
4. Put breasts in a casserole dish (9 by 13) and put thinly sliced or shredded mozarella cheese on each breast and pour bottled pasta sauce over top (I usually use Ragu).
5. Then sprinkle parmesan cheese over everything.
6. Cover with foil and bake about 30 minutes or until chicken is done.
7. Serve over pasta noodles (I use linguine).

This is such a tasty meal and is one of Justin's favorites. My kids gobble it up too.


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce

I made this for dinner tonight. It was super tasty! The boys REALLY liked it. It was so easy! It tasted quite similar to the Rose Sauce from Superstore. I used whole wheat noodles, substituted the cream for half/half, and I just used dried basil because I didn't have fresh and the recipe turned out great. I got the recipe from Pioneer Woman (thanks to Krystyn for introducing me to her blog).

Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce


* 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
* 2 Tablespoons Butter
* 1 whole Medium Onion, Finely Diced (I only used about 1/4 onion)
* 4 cloves Garlic, Minced
* 2 cans (15 Ounce Each) Tomato Sauce Or Marinara Sauce
* Salt And Pepper, to taste
* Dash Of Sugar (more To Taste)
* 1 cup Heavy Cream
* Grated Parmesan Or Romano Cheese, To Taste
* Fresh Basil, Chopped
* 1-½ pound Fettuccine

Preparation Instructions

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of pasta water.

Heat butter and oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and saute for a minute or so. Pour in tomato sauce and add salt, pepper, and sugar to taste. Stir and cook over low heat for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat and stir in cream. Add cheese to taste, then check seasonings. Stir in pasta and chopped basil and serve immediately. (Thin with pasta water before adding basil if needed.)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Citrus mania

Grilled Chicken with Lemon Basil Pasta (from pioneer woman)


  • 4 whole Grilled Chicken Breasts, Sliced
  • 1 pound Penne Pasta, Cooked Until Al Dente
  • ½ sticks Butter
  • 3 whole Lemons, Juiced
  • ¾ cups Heavy Cream
  • ¼ cups Half-and-half
  • 1-½ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese (or Romano)
  • Salt And Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
  • 20 whole Basil Leaves, Chopped

Preparation Instructions

Cook pasta, reserving 1 cup of hot pasta water when you drain. Set pasta aside in a colander.

In the same pot, melt butter over medium heat. Squeeze in the juice of 3 to 4 lemons. Whisk together. Pour in cream and half-and-heat. Whisk until hot. Dump in cheese and whisk until melted. Add salt and pepper. Check consistency, adding some of the hot pasta water to loosen the sauce if needed.

Pour pasta and sauce into a large serving bowl. Sprinkle remaining basil all over the top, then add sliced chicken breasts. Serve immediately!

I made these cupcakes for dick's Birthday, and i don't know about the rest of my family, but i thought they were pretty amazing! I followed the directions precisely and they turned out SOOOOO good! mmmmmm, lime:)))

Lime Margarita Cupcakes

Margaritta CUpcake (3)


2 C. unbleached all-purpose flour

1 Tbsp instant milk powder

1 Tbsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

12 Tbsp (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 1/2 C sugar

1 Tbsp vanilla extract

1 C margarita mix (or any basic sweet and sour mixer)

5 egg whites, at room temperature

4 oz. light cream cheese, room temperature

6 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature

zest and juice of 1 lime

1 tsp vanilla extract

pinch salt

2 C powdered sugar


Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare 2 cupcake pans.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, instant milk, baking powder and salt and set aside.

In bowl of electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together on medium-high until light (about 3 mins).

Beat in the vanilla extract, then margarita mix.

Reduce the speed to low and beat the flour mixture into the butter mixture until just combined.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer fitted with clean, dry beaters and set on high speed, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.

Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the beaten whites into the batter just until incorporated.

Divide the batter between the cupcake molds.

Bake about 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centers comes out clean.

Meanwhile, in bowl of stand mixer combine cream cheese, butter, lime juice, and zest, vanilla extract and beat on high until light and fluffy.

Slowly add in salt and sugar mixing until combined thoroughly.

Place bowl in fridge until cupcakes are cooled and ready to frost.

Once cupcakes have cooled completely, remove icing from fridge, frost, and decorate to your liking.

Makes about 24 cupcakes

Have fun!!