Tag Archives: main dish

Chicken Noodle and Cheese Dinner

P1050828Want an easy dinner that everyone will love? Try this: Chicken and noodles, covered in a creamy sauce, and then topped with cheese.

That sounds pretty simple, right?

Well, it is!

It’s true- there is nothing fancy about this dinner, and there is nothing difficult about this dinner. But, there is a lot delicious about this dinner- and my kids and husband love it when I make it! And that is what makes it a keeper.

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Fresh Ham Steaks in the Crock Pot

P1050413When we had our pig butchered, I was introduced to many cuts of meat that I was not accustomed to using- cuts that you don’t see in the normal grocery store. But more than that- I also found out that cuts like “ham steaks” and even a whole ham is much, much different when it is fresh and uncured, like the ham I used to buy at the grocery store.

Those hams have been processed and treated with nitrates and preservatives, which greatly affects their taste and appearance.

My fresh, uncured whole ‘ham’ from our hog, had the texture and taste more like a roast- Definitely not what we are used to eating on a ham biscuit, along with eggs, or on the platter for Easter dinner. The ham steaks were the same way.

This was going to take some getting used to. I looked for some recipes for the ham steaks, but nothing looked that great to me. From what I read, though, I did gather that fresh ham steaks have a tendency to be a little tough and also dry.

So, I decided to just start experimenting until something worked. And….I finally figured out the perfect recipe. In fact, this has become a much enjoyed and popular dish at our house! It is moist, tender, and tastes great.

So, in case you were wondering, too, here’s how to prepare fresh ham steaks! (I think the recipe would work equally as well with pork chops!)

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Tasty Barbecue Chicken Legs

P1050357Here’s a great Main Dish for any weeknight at your house. It’s easy and cheap and a family-pleaser!

Chicken legs are a very economical cut of chicken, so they are a great choice if you are wanting to save your pennies! Perhaps one of my favorite ways to prepare and eat chicken legs is with Barbecue Sauce.

In this method, I remove the skin of the chicken legs, so that the sauce sticks right to the chicken itself. Removing the skin also makes them a little less fattening, if that’s something you are wanting to watch. I have found that I much prefer eating chicken legs without the skin in the way. I never liked that all the good coating or sauce, or whatever was used, was only on the skin, and then you have all that bare chicken underneath. Personal preference, yes, but maybe you feel the same way?

In this recipe, I both bake and grill the chicken legs. Bake first to ensure the chicken gets cooked fully and evenly- then finish off with grilling, either on an outdoor grill if weather is warm, or even on an indoor grill. I have done both.

I use my Homemade Sweet BBQ Sauce to coat them up. The end result will be juicy, tender, and very messy chicken legs!

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Homemade Chili

P1050218I love chili! Don’t you? It’s a cold weather classic- perfect for fall parties, chilly nights, football games, or even as yummy leftovers for lunch! (Hubby and I both thought it tasted even better the next day!)

This is a hearty, traditional and family-friendly chili made with tomatoes, onion, garlic, beans, herbs, spices, and ground beef- and not super spicy. (This is one of those recipes I like to use some of my preserved tomatoes from the summer’s garden!)

Growing up, Mom always served chili over rice with cheese on top that melted into the chili to make something delicious! So, that’s how I do it too!

If you like, think ahead and prepare the beans in the slow cooker earlier on in the day. (instead of buying them canned) and bake a dish of Baked Brown Rice while the chili is cooking!

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Spicy Chipotle Steaks

P1050111Here’s a great Do-It-Yourself spice rub that is perfect for steaks with a little kick!

Chipotle is a fairly popular flavor these days, often seen in Mexican dishes. Many recipes with Chipotle will call for you to use a little can of chipotle peppers that are packed in a sauce. Though I do like the unique smoky flavor these peppers contribute, I almost always find it to be too overpowering in dishes for my taste, perhaps because the flavors are so concentrated in the canned peppers.

Then I decided to try Ground Chipotle Pepper- found in your spices at the grocery store. Basically, it’s the same product in different form. It’s just dried chipotle peppers, ground up! I have enjoyed this much more- still achieving the smoky flavor, but now not so overpowering.

So, this steak rub lends a hint of that great smoky chipotle to your beef with a nice spicy kick, too!

I think some my kids thought the steaks were a little bit too spicy. (though they did eat them, I will note!) But Tim and I loved the flavor and the spiciness level, too!

Here’s what you need:


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‘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!!)


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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!
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Herbs and Spice Chicken Tenders (quick and easy)


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 🙂


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