Tag Archives: dinner

Shredded Beef & Gravy over Mashed Potatoes

4-20160329_185002This was truly a delicious home cooked dinner.  It doesn’t get much more satisfying than fork-tender roast beef with gravy and tender vegetables, all swimming in a fluffy pile of buttery mashed potatoes. That’s comfort food in every way! And, if you are trying to cook more meals without using pre-packaged ingredients and more whole foods, you’ll want to add this to your list!

Serves 4-6

Continue reading

Advertisements

Hamburger Rice and Cheese Dinner

20150121_175122I’m always on the look-out for yummy dinners that use ground beef, since it’s such an economical cut.

Add to that- budget friendly, and healthy, and free of packaged and preserved foods, and the options narrow down quite a bit.

But, I’ve decided this one is a keeper for my recipe books. My inspiration came from an old casserole recipe that I used to enjoy as a child.

Not only is this new and improved version really tasty, it’s also “cleaner”, using all real food- nothing processed or packaged. Budget-friendly ingredients like Ground Beef, Brown Rice, and chicken broth are key players, so it’s easy on the wallet, too.

Fresh basil adds the perfect little compliment to the creamy rice and beef- it really gives this dish a special flavor. And who doesn’t like bubbly, gooey cheese to top it all off? As a bonus, this reheats really well for great leftovers, too.

Serve up with 1 or 2 veggies as side dishes. Enjoy!

Continue reading

‘Fall-Off-The-Bone-Tender’ Pork Spare Ribs with Homemade BBQ Sauce (Slow Cooker)

P1040583So far my very favorite cut of meat from the hog we raised has been the Spare Ribs! They are lip-smackin’ good!

This recipe is so easy and requires minimal prep. But the result is tender, fall-off-the-bone ribs, coated in a homemade sweet barbecue sauce!

Tim had to work late when I made these for dinner a few nights ago. So, I needed to save enough for him to eat later. I must admit, I was really having to restrain myself from just eating what I was saving for him!  But I was a good wife and didn’t. 🙂 (though, I have to confess, I did take a little!!)

YUM!!

Continue reading

How-to-Make Tender Chuck Roast with Brown Gravy (Slow cooker)

P1040434Wondering how to make the perfect chuck roast? Tender, fall-apart meat- juicy and flavorful?

What if I told you that the key is to make it in your slow-cooker, with only about 10 minutes of prep and only a few ingredients? Yep. It is that easy!

Some roasts taste best when roasted slowly in the oven- like the eye-of-round or bottom-of-the-round. But, when it comes to a chuck roast or shoulder roast- I think P1040439the best results come from using the slow-cooker. That moist heat, low temp, and slow cooking give you a winner every time.

After the roast cooks, all you have to do is make the delicious brown gravy- also easier than you might think.

So, here’s how. You will be ‘wow-ing’ the family in no time!
Continue reading

Herbs and Spice Chicken Tenders (quick and easy)

P1040332

A few spices that you probably already have in your cabinets and fresh herbs are the stars on these chicken tenders. They’re fast and easy, but still bring plenty of flavor to the table. On those nights when dinner just needs to come together quickly, this is a great solution!

My whole family really enjoyed the chicken tenders prepared this way. I think there was a total of one-half left over 🙂

PRINTABLE RECIPE

Continue reading

Loaded Potatoes and Sausage Casserole

P1030869This was dinner last night, and it was SO good.

I’m a big potato lover.

I love a good baked potato loaded with all the good stuff, like butter, sour cream, cheese- Oh my! Butter, sour cream, cheese- Oh my! Butter, sour cream, chee…ok sorry, I’ll stop now!

Anyway, this casserole uses those same ingredients common to a loaded baked potato. Of course, many people also add bacon to their loaded spud. So, keeping with the pork, I substituted ground breakfast sausage sausage.  Add some red pepper- and it was perfect. (if I had some green onions on hand, I would have chopped them up and added them, too) I ate too much. My husband was in love, as well.

Make some tonight!

Continue reading

Golden Parmesan Crusted Chicken Tenders

P1030781These chicken tenders are so good and perfect for a family meal. Skip the pre-packaged chicken coatings- this is so easy to prepare at home with just a few ingredients.

You will be serving up golden and nicely-crusted chicken tenders that taste great and that are healthy, too!

Here’s why I like them:

1. Healthier! Anytime I can add nutrition to a dish, without  compromising the taste- I’m happy. This recipe uses Wheat Germ as a coating. It mimics bread crumbs, and results in a nice and crispy texture, but wheat germ is also a great source of Folic Acid, Fiber, and many vitamins. I love using it!

2. Baked- though I do like the taste of fried tenders, baking is lower-fat, less-messy, and easier to prepare.

3. Quick- Chicken tenderloins only take about 20 minutes to bake

4. Juicy and Crispy- This coating gives a nice crusted finish to the tenders- no soggy coating for me, please.

5. Completely homemade- Milk, Wheat germ, fresh Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, paprika- that’s it!

Continue reading

Roasted Tomato Sauce and Meatballs on Spaghetti

spaghetti

How does Spaghetti with an absolutely homemade sauce (not even canned tomatoes!), made-from-scratch tender meatballs, on top of spaghetti with Parmesan cheese sound for dinner? Yum!

And if the taste wasn’t reason enough to prepare this dish, the aroma that will fill your house while the veggies are roasting in the oven is just intoxicating. Open your windows and soon the whole neighborhood will be over to see what’s cooking!

Here’s the overview:

Forget the store-bought stuff. (Who wants high fructose corn syrup in their sauce anyway?) This sauce is made with fresh tomatoes, garlic, onions, and peppers- this would be a GREAT way to use summer produce from the garden! It is so simple and does not require a lot of time cooking on the stovetop in order to get good, deep flavors. By roasting the tomatoes and other veggies, the flavors become concentrated and deep in a short amount of time.- and the oven does all the work.

Continue reading

Homemade Pizza Crust

homemade pizza picmonkeyI’ve always liked homemade pizza. It’s such a great, laid-back meal and so customize-able to your own family’s tastes. You can go meatless and fill it up with cheese and veggies, or you could go the other way and do a meat-lovers. You could have fun and add pineapple and gourmet cheeses, and the list goes on.

What are your favorite pizza toppings for homemade pizza?

The pizza dough recipe featured in this post is quite simple and one of our favorites. One batch will make 2 medium round pizzas that can feed approx. 2 people each- so 4 people all together (depending on how thin you roll the crust and how hungry the people are who are eating!) Or, you could divide the dough into smaller pieces and roll out to make smaller individual pizzas!

PRINTABLE RECIPE

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 cup white all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup white-wheat flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • pinch of red chili pepper flakes
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tbs. warm water
  • 2 teaspoons active, dry yeast
  • 3 Tbs. olive oil

In a small bowl, combine the warm water and yeast.

P1020954

Stir to combine and set aside so the yeast can dissolve while you are working on the other ingredients.

In a food processor (or bowl) add the flour and salt, garlic powder, pepper flakes, and Italian seasoning. Mix.

P1030494

Add the olive oil and mix until combined.

Now, pour in the water/yeast mixture with the food processor running. You may need to add additional water- 1 Tbs. at a time- you are looking for the mixture to turn into a soft dough that no longer clings to the sides of the bowl.

Take this dough out and turn onto a floured surface and just slightly knead. Form into a ball.

P1030495

Pour a small amount of olive oil into a large bowl. Spread it around the bottom to coat. Place the ball of dough in the bowl and then turn it over, so the top is covered in the oil.

Cover the bowl with a clean, warm, damp cloth.

P1030498

Set aside to rise for at least 1 hour. (you can use this as soon as it is done rising, or you can store it in the refrigerator in a closed container until you are ready to use it)

P1030500

When the dough has risen, remove from the bowl and place on a clean surface.

Divide into 2 pieces and allow to rest for several minutes.

P1030503

Working with 1 section of dough at a time, roll each piece into a rough circle (or rectangle- or whatever shape you want, really!) on a lightly floured surface.

P1030504

Sprinkle a little bit of cornmeal down and place the dough on top just to coat the bottom lightly (this prevents the dough from sticking to the pan and also gives a nice texture)

Then transfer the dough to a baking stone or pan.

Top with your favorite sauce, cheeses, and other toppings.

Bake at 425 for approx. 12 minutes- or until the cheeses melt, the top is bubbly and the bottom of the pizza is beginning to brown.

P1030509

The pizza pictured here includes: sauce, 1 cup of freshly grated mozzarella, 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, white mushrooms, red pepper, fresh spring onions, and a little bit of black pepper. Mmm..mmm..mmm!

P1030510

PRINTABLE RECIPE

dough recipe adapted from Giada de Laurentis

Creamy Cheese and Broccoli Rotini (stove-top)

P1030373Have you noticed that I have a lot of recipes that include the word “creamy” in the title? I guess I’m not very creative when it comes to descriptive names. But it just goes to show that creamy dishes are definite favorites in our household. And if it ain’t broke- don’t fix it!

But really, this one is a winner- we all like it a lot. I love that it is quick and easy to throw together- no baking required. It’s all done on the stove-top (with just a few seconds under the broiler). This is also one of my favorite meatless dishes. I like to try to do at least one meatless dish each week to help the ‘ol wallet out.

So, what is it? It is whole wheat rotini, along with broccoli and cauliflour, coated in a creamy garlic white sauce- similar to alfredo. (but alfredo generally uses parmesan cheese in the sauce).  Then topped with a generous amount of mozzarella cheese.  Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: