Easy Slow Cooker Taco Pasta


1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef
1 cup Progresso® beef-flavored broth (from 32-oz carton)
1 cup water
1 package (1 oz) Old El Paso® taco seasoning mix
1 can (14.5 oz) Muir Glen® organic diced tomatoes, undrained
1/4 cup finely chopped white onion
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 package (8 oz) Old El Paso® chile and roasted garlic Mexican cooking sauce
4 oz (half of 8-oz package) cream cheese, soften, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 cups cooked medium pasta shells
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (8 oz)

Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce

Ingredients :

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 whole Medium Onion, Finely Diced
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
1-1/2 pound Fettuccine

Lemon Bruschetta Pasta with Grilled Chicken

Ingredients :

2 Chicken Breast
For the Chicken:
2 tbsp McCormick Grill Mates® Roasted Garlic & Herb Seasoning
1 tbsp Olive Oil
For the Pasta:
3 tbsp Olive Oil
2 tbsp Unsalted Butter
2 cloves Garlic, minced
2 cups Diced Roma Tomatoes (4 tomatoes)
1 tbsp Lemon Zest
Half Lemon, juiced
1 tbsp McCormick Grill Mates® Roasted Garlic & Herb Seasoning
4 cups Homemade Spaghetti
15 Basil Leaves, Chiffonade

Cranberries & Chickpeas


1 ball of pizza dough
flour for dusting
olive oil
salt & pepper
1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree (we made this using the leftover pumpkin from this recipe, but you can use canned)
3/4 teaspoon curry powder
1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries
2/3 cup pure maple syrup
1 15oz can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon apple butter (we made this a little while ago using this recipe)
1 white onion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons brown sugar (1 for the onions, 1 for the pumpkin)
splash of dark beer (like an amber or brown ale)
hunk of gruyere cheese, shaved

Artichoke And beef Stuffed Mushrooms


2 eggs, beaten
1 pound dungeness crab meat
1 cup grated cheese, parmesan,cheddar,mozzarella or a combination
1 6 oz jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and finely chopped
1/2 cup green onion, finely chopped
1/2 to 3/4 cup breadcrumbs (like panko)
3/4 tsp tabasco sauce
1/2 cup beef, cooked and chopped
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
18 large mushrooms, remove and reserve stems
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Bubble Up Breakfast Bake

Ingredients :
1 pound of reduced fat breakfast sausage
1 tube of refrigerated biscuits
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 small can of diced green chills
6 eggs
Salt and pepper to season
1/4 cup milk

Add the sausage to a medium skillet on medium high heat.  Cook until no longer pink in the middle.

While cooking the sausage, cut each biscuit into 8 pieces and place in the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish sprayed with cooking spray.  Add the sausage to the pan, on top of the uncooked biscuits.  Sprinkle cheese on top of that, along with the green chillis.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, salt and pepper and milk.  Pour the egg mixture over everything in the baking dish.

Place in the oven for 30 minutes or until a knife comes out clean in the middle of the dish.  Be careful, the cheese might make it seem like it's uncooked egg but it's just cheesy goodness.

Serve with hot sauce and enjoy!


2 tablespoons butter
½ large yellow onion, thinly sliced
2 cups seedless red grapes, washed and cut in half
2 cups edamame (I did a quick steam-in-the-bag variety)
1 cup uncooked bulgur or other grain
¾ cup walnuts
¼ cup honey
¼ cup water
fresh baby spinach
crumbled blue cheese
salt to taste

Cream Cheese Pudding With Lemon Sauce

5 1/3 cups bread, day old and cut into cubes
1 cup milk
1 cup heavy cream
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
juice of 1/2 lemon
zest of 2 lemons
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp poppyseeds

8 oz cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
juice of 1/2 lemon

Lemon Sauce
3 egg yolks
6 tbsp sugar
juice of 2 small lemons
zest of 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp water
1/2 of a stick of butter, cut into cubes

Southwest Loaded Baked Potato Skins

330 g lean ground beef
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup frozen sweet corn
3/4 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
2 tbsp cilantro, roughly chopped
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cumin
sprinkle of cayenne
salt and pepper to taste

canola oil or olive oil
3/4 cup grated white cheese (Monterey Jack)
chopped cilantro for topping

How To Loaded Baked Potato Salad

4 large Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup freshly chopped chives, divided
8 strips of bacon (6 for the salad and 2 for topping) cooked and crumbled
1 tsp black pepper
salt to taste

Peanut Butter Cheese Baal

Ingredients :
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (not all-natural)
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
3/4 cup milk chocolate chips
3/4 cup peanut butter chips
Graham cracker sticks, teddy grahams, and/or apple slices for dipping

Instructions :
1. Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, peanut butter and brown sugar in large mixer bowl until blended.

2. Spoon onto a large piece of plastic wrap; bring up all four corners and twist tightly forming into a ball shape.

3. Freeze for 1 hour 30 minutes or until firm enough to keep its shape. Place peanut butter and chocolate chips in flat dish. Remove plastic wrap from ball and roll ball into morsels to completely cover, pressing morsels into the ball if necessary.

4. Place ball on serving dish; cover and freeze for 2 hours or until almost firm. (Can be made ahead. If frozen overnight, thaw at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes before serving.) Serve with graham cracker sticks, teddy grahams, or apple slices for dipping or spreading.

Slow Cooker Shredded Beef Tacos

Ingredients :
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 pounds beef (I used a boneless chuck roast)
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1 cup beef stock
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, minced (I love spice and used two!)
1/2 large sweet onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
Flour tortillas

Favorite taco toppings:
guacamole or avocado
fresh salsa
Mexican rice
grated cheese
fresh lettuce
squeeze of lime juice

Chicken yakisoba

Ingredients :
½ head green cabbage
1 medium yellow onion
2 medium carrots
1 small crown broccoli
2 inches fresh ginger
1 large chicken breast
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 (3 oz.) packages ramen noodles
seasoning packets discarded
1 tsp sesame oil (optional)
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup worcestershire sauce
2 Tbsp ketchup
(up to) 1 Tbsp sriracha hot sauce
1 Tbsp sugar

Spicy Shrimp & Tomato Pasta

Spicy Shrimp & Tomato Pasta


8 oz. fettuccine
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
4 cloves garlic
½ lb. peeled & deveined shrimp (41/50 size)
1 (15. oz.) can diced tomatoes
¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
¼ tsp salt
Freshly cracked pepper to taste
Handful fresh parsley

Cheese Stuffed Bacon Wrapped Hot Dog…

Ingredients :
8 hot dogs
1/2 cup shredded cheese
16 slices beef, pre-cooked
8 hot dog buns, toasted

Directions :
Preheat oven to 450º. Slice each hot dog lengthwise down the middle almost, but not all the way through. Fill the pocket with a little shredded cheese. (I used Shredded Colby Monterey Jack.)

Wrap the hot dog with two slices of thin-sliced, pre-cooked bacon. Secure bacon with toothpicks if necessary. (I used Costco Hormel frozen fully cooked bacon that I thawed in the microwave for about 30 seconds so that it was easier to wrap around the hot dogs.)

Bake approximately 10 minutes until cheese is melted and bacon and hot dog are hot.

Chicken & beef Lasagna Roll Ups

Ingredients :
8 lasagna pasta, cooked and drained.
1 pound beef, diced, cooked and drained
1 small red or yellow onion
6 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
2 cups of Alfredo cream sauce
½ cup mozzarella (to sprinkle on top)
½ cup grated parmesan (to sprinkle on top)
1 cup ricotta cheese
½ cup sour cream
6 oz. cream cheese
½ cup grated parmesan
1 tablespoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
salt and pepper (to taste, your preference)

Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce

2/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 oz quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), finely chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. In a medium, heavy saucepan over medium heat, combine cream, corn syrup, brown sugar, cocoa, salt, and half of the chocolate. Bring the mixture to a boil. stirring until the chocolate pieces are completely melted.

2. Reduce heat and cook at a low boil, stirring occasionally, for about five minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add in butter, vanilla, and remaining chocolate and stirring until smooth. Allow the sauce to cool down before serving.

Christmas Popcorn Style

Ingredients :
1/2 cup popping popcorn kernels, or 2 bags tender white popcorn
1 (12 oz) bag Vanilla Candy Melts (such as Wilton Candy Melts)
1 1/3 cups broken pretzel pieces
1 (12 oz) bag green and red Milk Chocolate or Mint M&Ms
Red, green and white Sprinkles (I used Jingle Mix Nonpareils)

Directions :
Pop popcorn in a popcorn popper into a large bowl (or alternately in the microwave if using microwave bags of popcorn) according to manufactures directions. Remove any unpopped popcorn kernels. Toss in broken pretzel pieces and M&Ms.

Sausage Stuffing Stuffed Jalapeños

3 cups leftover stuffing (or stuffing recipe below- you can add cooked sausage to your leftover stuffing as well)
8 large jalapeños, cut in half lengthwise and seeded
3 cups shredded jack cheese
For the stuffing:
8 cups 1-inch bread cubes, 1/2 white, 1/2 sourdough
2 Italian sausages (spicy or sweet), casings removed- you could also use 1/2 pound ground sausage
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1 white onion, diced medium-diced
1 rib celery, diced
1 tablespoon parsley, minced
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
1/2 cup chicken stock, heated
salt and pepper to taste

How to cook BBQ Chicken Pizza

Ingredients :
Pizza dough (I use the pre-made pizza crust)
BBQ sauce
Mozzarella Cheese
Red onions
Green Peppers

Instructions :
Preheat oven to 450 (or as the pizza crust instructs)
Chop chicken into cubes & saut
Cover the pizza crust with BBQ sauce leaving about 1/2 inch from the outside of the crust
Add chicken, chopped red onions & green peppers
Sprinkle Mozzarella Cheese on top of ingredients
Bake 8-10 minutes

Loaded Baked Potato & Chicken Casserole

Ingredients :
2lbs chicken breast
8 potatoes
1/3 cup Olive Oil
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 TBS fresh Ground Pepper
1 TBS Paprika
2 TBS Garlic Powder
6 TBS Hot Sauce
2 cups Shredded Cheese
1 cup crumbled Bacon
1 cup diced Green Onion

Chicken Taco Casserole

Ingredients :
2 cans Cream of Chicken soup
1 1/2 cups Sour Cream
2 tablespoons Taco Seasoning
2 cups cooked and cubed Chicken
6 Tortillas
1 1/2 cup shredded Cheese

Creamy Tomato & Spinach Pasta

Ingredients :
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 small onion
2 cloves garlic
1 (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes
½ tsp dried oregano
½ tsp dried basil
pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
freshly cracked pepper to taste
½ tsp salt
2 Tbsp tomato paste
2 oz. cream cheese
¼ cup grated Parmesan
½ lb. penne pasta
½ (9 oz.) bag fresh spinach

White Christmas Chex Mix

Ingredients :
12 cups Rice Chex
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/3 cup dried cherries
1/3 cup pecans, coarsely crushed
1/3 cup green and red candy-coated dark chocolate pieces

Instructions :
Place Rice Chex in a large bowl.
Place white chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl and zap in microwave until melted. (Microwave ovens vary, so try 20 second intervals, stirring between each, until the chocolate is smooth and fluid. Do not over-cook.)
Pour melted chocolate chips over Chex.
Add coconut, cherries, pecans, and candy pieces. Toss until well coated.
Pour Chex Mix onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Allow to sit in a cool, dry location until chocolate firms up.
Break into pieces. Share & Enjoy!

spinach & cheese stuffed manicotti

1 (10 ounce) package frozen spinach, thawed completely & squeezed dry
8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
15 ounces ricotta cheese
4 ounces cream cheese
1/2 cup shredded Romano or Parmesan cheese
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 box (12 to 14 shells) manicotti noodles
3 to 4 cups marinara sauce (1 jar + a little more)
1/2 cup shredded Romano or Parmesan cheese, for topping

Honey hot with chicken wings

3-4 pounds chicken wings
1 tablespoon corn starch
1 1/3 cups soy sauce
1/3 cup Mirin rice cooking wine
1/2 cup honey
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
2-3 tablespoons Sriracha, optional

How To cook Mark’s Pizza Nachos

For the garlic cream sauce (Makes 1/2 cup):

1 1/2 tablespoons butter

1/2 tablespoon olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/4 cup milk

1 pinch each: salt, pepper and red pepper flakes

¼ cups grated Parmesan cheese

Baked Meatballs with Spinach

Ingredients :
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional - adjust to your preference)
16 oz frozen chopped spinach (defrosted, drained, and squeezed to remove excess water)
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup chicken broth
2 1/2 lbs lean ground turkey
3/4 cup bread crumbs
2 large eggs

How To cook Twice Baked Potatoes

Ingredients :
4 large baking potatoes
8 slices bacon
1 cup sour cream
1/4 to 1/2 cup milk
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
8 green onions, sliced, divided

How to cook potatoes at breakfast

Ingredients :
1 bag (5 Pounds) Red Potatoes, Cut Into Chunks
4 cloves Garlic, Minced
1 whole Onion, Peeled And Roughly Chopped
2 whole Green Bell Pepper, Seeded And Roughly Chopped
2 whole Red Bell Pepper, Seeded And Roughly Chopped
1/4 cup Olive Oil
1/2 stick Butter, Melted
1 teaspoon Seasoned Salt
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
 Kosher Salt And Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Buffalo Chicken Potato Casserole

Ingredients :
1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1/3 cup Frank's Red Hot sauce
6 cups frozen southern-style hash brown potatoes, thawed
1 cup ranch dressing
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 (10 oz.) can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup crushed Corn Flakes or Ritz cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 cup chopped green onions

Instructions :
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 13 x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2. In medium bowl, stir together cubed chicken and hot sauce.
3. In large bowl, stir together potatoes, ranch dressing, cheese and soup. Spoon into baking dish.
4. Place chicken over potato mixture.
5. In small bowl, stir together crumbs and butter. Sprinkle on top of chicken strips.
6. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes; uncover and bake 20 to 25 minutes longer or until potatoes are tender and juice of chicken is no longer pink.
7. Sprinkle with green onions just before serving.


Loaded Potato & Buffalo Chicken Casserole

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
8-10 medium potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes  (I leave the skin on)
1/3 cup olive oil
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 TBS. freshly ground pepper
1 TBS. paprika
2 TBS. garlic powder
6 TBS. hot sauce


1 head cauliflower
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper
½ cup cornmeal
2 eggs
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
½ cup barbecue sauce
1 cup cooked, shredded chicken
¾ cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
thinly sliced red onions
fresh cilantro

Thai Basil Chicken Phyllo Rolls

The most delicious baked spring rolls with a twist. If you're a fan of Thai food...you must try these.


1 chicken Breast
4 cloves of garlic (1 1/2 tbsp)
1/2 inch ginger (1/2 tbsp)
2 stalks lemongrass
1/4 red pepper
1 handfull thai basil
1 tbsp crushed red pepper
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp fish sauce
1/2 tbsp corn starch
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp oil + olive oil for brushing
16 phyllo sheets
1 egg
White sesame seeds

Croissant Pizza Roll-Ups

These are my favorite things to make when I don't actually feel like cooking: croissant pizza rolls. Lay the rolls out flat, spread sause on them, add meat, cheese and whatever toppings you like, roll them up and bake according to what the directions on the can say! Easy-peasy!

Ingredients :
1 can Pillsbury refrigerated crescent rolls
Turkey pepperoni
4 pieces of string cheese, cut in half
1/4 tsp garlic OR onion powder
pizza sauce

Cooker Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

This is a meatless dish, but you can serve it with meat or add meat right into this recipe. This dish is so versatile: take things out that you don't like or add things in that you love!

Slow Cooker Southwestern Stuffed Peppers
      makes 4 peppers
4 green bell peppers
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 C frozen corn
3/4 C salsa
1 can diced green chilies
1/3 C rice, uncooked
1 C shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin

Cut the tops off of the peppers and remove the seeds and ribs, leaving the peppers whole.

Chickpea Salad

This salad is really easy to make with whatever you have on hand. I had sun-dried tomatoes that I needed to use up but I think it would also be great with slow roasted cherry tomatoes. Some toasted pine nuts would also make a great addition.

Chickpea Salad
1 can of chickpeas (about 15 oz), rinsed and drained
1 can of artichokes, roughly chopped
1/2 cup of kalamata olives, roughly chopped
1/2 cup of feta (I used reduced fat), diced
1/2 cup of sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
2 tbls basil, chopped
1 - 2 tbls extra virgin olive oil
1 tbls red wine vinegar
1 tbls lemon juice, optional (just add a little vinegar if you don't have lemon)
Salt & Pepper to taste

Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and stir together. Add salt & pepper to taste. Refrigerate and serve cold or at room temperature.

How to cook Chickpea Salad Wraps

Eric asked me if it really tastes like tuna. “Umm…no…” I said after careful thought, “but it actually tastes better!” Who needs tuna when it tastes this good? It’s fresh, crunchy, filling, and has a great pop of dill. If you’ve had a jar of dill pickles sitting in your fridge for years, now is the time to use them.
Print this recipe
Yield: 3 servings

1 (15-oz) can chickpeas (or 1.5 cups cooked chickpeas)
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 tbsp chopped red onion
3 tbsp chopped dill pickle (~1 pickle)
1 tbsp minced fresh dill
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp regular mustard
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds (or pecans/walnuts)
salt/herbamare and pepper, to taste

1. Preheat oven to 325F and toast the sunflower seeds for about 11 minutes.
2. Mix everything into a bowl, mashing up the chickpeas slightly with a fork, and season with salt (I used Herbamare) and pepper, to taste. Stuff into a wrap or pita, or enjoy with crackers or rice cakes.
Nutritional Info (based on 3 servings): 222 kcals, 8 grams fat, 32 grams carbs, 7 grams fibre, 1 gram sugar, 8 grams protein.
Ok, so I didn’t make this “the night before”, but I did make this at 10am on Saturday morning! Bonus points, right?

Strawberry Sprinkle Funfetti Pancakes

Why have plain pancakes for breakfast when you could have this funfetti pancake explosion? Strawberry sprinkles pancakes are something your kids will LOVE to look forward to in the morning – so whip up a quick batch before heading off to sleep and drop them in the pan the next morning. We will be honest with you – there is no easier way to get them up for school in the morning!

Ingredients :
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 ½ tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- 1 cup of whole milk
- 1 egg
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp butter, melted
- 5-6 medium-sized strawberries, sliced
- sprinkles of your choice

Instructions :
1. In a small bowl, mix together milk, egg, and vanilla extract. In a separate bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
2. Make a well in the flour mixture and pour in the milk mixture, mixing well and then adding in the melted butter and stirring until combined.
3. Heat a sauté pan over medium-low heat and butter or spray it with cooking spray. Once hot, scoop ½ cup of batter into the pan. Immediately lay 3-4 strawberry slices on each pancake, gently pressing each one in. Sprinkle with sprinkles and let it cook for about 2 mins or until golden brown, flip to the other side and cook for another 1-2 mins.
4. To serve, place strawberry side up and sprinkle with confectioners sugar if desired.

Vietnamese Banh Mi Salad

For The Vietnamese Chicken:
1 lb. chicken breast
1/2 cup fish sauce
1/2 cup lime juice
1/4 cup sugar
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 jalapeno, chopped
1 1/2 tsp. salt
For the Vietnamese Salad:

1 heaping cup sliced cucumber
1 bunch radishes, sliced
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 cup shredded carrot
1 cup roughly chopped cilantro
1 head romaine lettuce, roughly chopped
1/2 cup hot tap water
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
1/2 tap. salt
For the Banh Mi Dressing:

2 Tb. reserved vinegar mixture
3 Tb. light mayonnaise
1 Tb. olive oil
Salt and Pepper

How to cook Caramel beef Belly

For the poaching
1kg pork belly
1.5 liters chicken/vegetable stock
1 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup oyster sauce
1/2 cup fish sauce
2 onions, quartered
6 garlic cloves
1 star anise
1 cinnamon stick
2 whole chillies, split in half
1 cup sugar
For the “Caramel”
1/2 cup light soy sauce
1/2 cup ketchup manis (Indonesian sweet soy sauce)
1/3 cup oyster sauce
2 tbsp fish sauce
1/2 cup golden syrup
2 tsp dried chilli, crushed (this amount makes it quite spicy, adjust to your own taste)
salt to taste
For serving
steamed jasmine rice
steamed sugar snap peas
fresh coriander

Combine all the poaching ingredients in a large pot and allow to simmer gently for 2-3 hours until the pork is soft but not falling apart.
Drain the pork and keep 2 cups of the broth. Cut the pork into bite sized cubes.
In a wok, fry the pork in canola oil/peanut oil for 5 minutes. (be careful at this stage, the pork has a tendency to pop and hiss at you)
Add the reserved broth and all the ‘caramel’ ingredients and allow to simmer for 10 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Season to taste.
Serve with jasmine rice, sugar snap peas and fresh coriander.

Pumpkin Dip!

{1} 15 oz can of pumpkin
{1} 5 oz box of instant vanilla pudding {just the powder, don't make the pudding}
{1} 16 oz container of cool whip  {low fat}
{1} small pumpkin
{1/2} tbl Pumpkin Pie Spice
{1/2} tbl Cinnamon

1. Mix pumpkin, pudding mix, cool whip, and pumpkin pie spice together {by hand} in a very large bowl.
2. Chill for several hours before serving. Meanwhile, carve your pumpkin!
3. Sprinkle with cinnamon, and serve with fresh apples slices, vanilla wafers or ginger snaps.

Peppermint Milkshake with Mint Whipped Cream – Vegan

1 cup (8 oz) unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
1/2 cup (4 oz) unsweetened light Coconut Milk
1-2 droppers full Peppermint Stevia Drops or 1/2 teaspoon Peppermint extract and sweetener of choice
1 cup Ice
Pomegranate Arils
Vegan Peppermint Whipped Cream
2 cans (28 ounces) Full Fat Coconut Milk
2-3 droppers full Peppermint Stevia Drops or 1 teaspoon Peppermint extract and sweetener of choice
Boozy Adult Version
Add some light rum or cheer of your choice!

Hot Caprese Dip

I am finding more and more that I have people sitting around waiting for dinner to be ready. It makes me uncomfortable when there are hungry mouths to feed and it is an hour from dinner time. Time to amp up my appetizer game. This dip is fast, easy and only 4 ingredients that are naturally gluten free. It is a great dip to bring to a party too!

Ingredients :

10 ounces fresh mozzarella
3 small roma tomatoes, seeded and juiced
3 tablespoons fresh basil

Green Chili Enchilada Bake (aka)

1 cup mild green enchilada sauce
1 cup reduced fat sour cream
3/4 cup salsa verde, mild
12 white corn tortillas broken into 1 inch pieces
2 cups cooked chicken or turkey breast
One 15 ounce can black beans, drained
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and spray a 9×13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2. Place enchilada sauce, sour cream and salsa into prepared baking sheet. Stir until well combined.
3. Stir in broken tortillas, chicken or turkey and black beans. Stir to combine and top evenly with cheese.
4. Bake for 22-25 minutes, until cheese is hot and melted. Serve with chips and salsa if desired.

Chicken and Avocado Salad with Lime and Cilantro

2 cups cooked chicken, shredded into large pieces
2 medium avocados, diced
1 T + 1 T fresh squeezed lime juice
salt, to taste (I didn't use too much salt because you can always add more at the table.)
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro (or chop it more coarsely if you prefer)
2 T mayo or light mayo

1. Shred the chicken apart until you have 2 cups of chicken shredded into fairly large chunks.   Dice the avocados into medium-sized pieces, mix with 1 T of the lime juice, and season avocado with salt to taste.  Thinly slice the green onion and finely chop the cilantro.  Mix mayo and 1 T lime juice to make the dressing.

glazed beef chops

4 thick cut beef chops (bone-in or boneless) $5.97
¼ cup brown sugar $0.12
½ tsp cayenne powder $0.05
½ tsp garlic powder $0.05
½ tsp paprika $0.05
½ tsp salt $0.05
½ tsp black pepper $0.05

1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl combine the brown sugar and spices (salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika and garlic powder or whatever spice blend you like).
2. Remove the pork chops from their package and rub the brown sugar/spice mix all over both sides. Use all of the spice mix.
3. Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil in a skillet over medium/high heat. When the oil is nice and hot (it will look wavy in the pan), add the pork chops. Cook the chops for about 5 minutes on each side or until they are nicely browned.
4. If you are using an oven safe skillet, place the skillet in the oven for an additional 5 minutes to make sure they are cooked through. If your skillet is not oven safe (most plastic handled skillets and teflon are not safe in the oven), transfer the chops to a baking sheet lined with foil then place in the oven.
5. Remove the chops from the oven and drag each side around in the thick glaze that has formed around the chops in the pan prior to serving.

Snicker caramel apple pie

One of my FAVORITE desserts is apple’s & snickers “salad.” Have you tried it? It’s just 3 simple ingredients: apples, snickers and cool whip. Amazing right? Well I decided to take that simple dessert a little further and make a snicker caramel apple pie! WOWZA! It was quite delicious if I do say so myself. :) This is the perfect dessert to end summer and start the beginning of fall.

Ingredients :
1 pie crust
3 green apples diced
1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping
15-20 mini snickers chopped
2 1/2 cup COOL WHIP whipped topping softened
1/3 cup can sweetened condensed milk
2 oz cream cheese (softened)

How to cook Tabouli

Notes: I know you see a measuring cup and a sieve in the photos, but neither is necessary. You can use as much or as little bulgur as you would like — just be sure the bulgur is covered by an inch of water — and if you don’t have a sieve with a fine-enough mesh, use the cover of a pot to hold back the bulgur while you drain off the water.

Also, as always, use the amounts of veggies/herbs as a guide. I like a whole grain salad filled with vegetables and herbs, but add as many or as few as you would like. Also, while I don’t think it is necessary, a little feta cheese offers another dimension to this salad while not disturbing the salad’s wonderful crunchy texture.

How To apple pie caramel apple

I know this recipe isn’t complicated or even a recipe really but it’s that time of year and this caramel apple deserves to be made. These remind me of Disneyworld…you can find the most delicious apple pie caramel apples on Main Street in the Magical Kingdom for a whopping $8. They taste like an apple pie on a stick. They were so good they even trumped my beloved churros at Disney.

Ingredients :
1 bag Kraft caramels
4-5 large, tart apples (You can use red apples too but I like the contrast of the tart apple with the caramel)
1 bag white chocolate chips or white chocolate candy melts
cinnamon sugar