Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Ridiculously Easy Vegetarian Chili

This recipe came from CNN correspondent Candy Crowley, who won the veggie division of the annual CNN Chili cook-off. I found it here at Rachael Ray's website. I love that it's simple, has hominy in it, and is vegetarian. The taste was a little lacking, but come on, it's vegetarian. The cheese greatly improves it's taste though. It's the best vegetarian chili I've tasted...

Ridiculously Easy Vegetarian Chili

  • 2 28 ounce can  crushed tomatoes
  • 2 28 ounce can  hominy, rinsed
  • 3 15 ounce can  pinto beans, rinsed
  • 1 4 ounce can  chopped green chiles
  • 2 small zucchinis, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup shredded monterey jack cheese, plus more for serving

  • In an 8-quart pot or Dutch oven, combine all of the ingredients except the cheese. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, cover and simmer until the vegetables are soft and the chili has thickened, about 35 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup cheese and serve more on the side.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Kraft Chicken Lo Mein

My family loved to order Chinese food growing up! We occasionally made it too, but the time and effort into making it took too long for my liking. When I ran across this recipe for Kraft's Easy Chicken Lo Mein recipe, I knew I had to try it.  My husband didn't grow up with my family's passion for Chinese food, so he's OK with it once in a while. He raved about this recipe! I liked it a lot as well, even though it's nothing like take-out. Way easy and totally yummy!

Kraft's Chicken Lo Mein

  • 1/2 lb. spaghetti, uncooked
  • 1/4 cup Kraft Asian Toasted Sesame Dressing
  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pkg. (16 oz.) frozen bell pepper and onion strips, thawed, drained (I couldn't find these so I just used a stir-fry mix and LOVED it)
  • 1/2 cup fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 Tbsp. peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup lite soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped Planters Cocktail Peanuts


  • 1 Cook spaghetti in large saucepan as directed on package.
  • 2 Meanwhile, heat dressing in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat. Add chicken and garlic; stir-fry 3 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Add peppers, onions, broth and peanut butter; stir-fry an additional 3 to 4 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  • 3 Drain spaghetti; return to pan. Add chicken mixture and soy sauce; mix well. Spoon onto serving platter; sprinkle with cilantro and peanuts

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Go Go Babyz Urban Advantage Stroller Giveaway on Our Family Treat

Our Family Treat always has awesome recipes and I love her blog. She is currently giving away a GoGO Babyz Urban Advantage Stroller. This thing looks awesome. Check it out!


Penne with Sausage, Red Potatoes, and Green Beans

I LOVE THE FOOD NANNY! She's a super sweet lady (I've met her) that compiled her favorite recipes for families to gather round the table at dinner time. They're usually just good comfort food. When I saw this recipe for Penne with Sausage, Red Potatoes, and Green Beans, in LDS Living magazine, I knew I wanted to try it! I was not disappointed. It was filling, but light because of the green beans and potatoes. Hope you enjoy it!

Penne with Sausage, Red Potatoes, and Green Beans
4 servings

8 ounces uncooked penne pasta
4 small red potatoes, quartered
8 ounces low-fat spicy bulk Italian sausage
1/4 cup minced yellow onion
2 small garlic cloves, minced
1 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed and cut in half (see Note)
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped fresh parsley
Salt and ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Romano, Asiago, or Parmesan cheese, plus additional

1. Cook the pasta according to package directions.  Drain.

2. Steam the potatoes or cook them in boiling salted water until tender.  At the same time, steam the beans or cook in the microwave until tender, 6 to 12 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, brown the sausage in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium heat.  Add the onion and garlic; cook and stir until the onion is soft and the sausage is completely cooked.  Pour in the broth and simmer for 3 minutes.  Stir in the olive oil and butter until the butter melts.  Add the green beans, potatoes, and pasta.  Mix well with a large spoon.  Add the parsley and salt and pepper to taste.

4. Decrease the heat to low and sprinkle 1/2 cup of the cheese over the mixture.  Cover the pan and cook a few more minutes until the cheese is melted.

5. Serve immediately in the same pot or spoon the mixture into a large, shallow serving bowl or deep platter. Pass the extra cheese.

Note: As a speedy alternative to preparing fresh beans, heat 1 (14.5-ounce) can of cut green beans drained, in the microwave and add them with the potatoes and pasta.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Beef Cheddar and Potato Pie

I love camping, and every time I go camping, I try my hardest to incorporate hobo dinners into our food rotation. There is just something satisfying about the combination of ground beef, carrots, and potatoes. I admit that I have made hobo dinners in the oven, but it just not the same.

I came across this recipe for Beef, Cheddar and Potato Pie in a Rachael Ray magazine and it caught my eye. Same basic idea, but the phyllo dough crust and large amount of cheese kick it up a notch. I increased the amount of vegetables called for and baked mine in a 9 X 13 glass pan for the same amount of time. It was gobbled all up!

Beef, Cheddar, and Potato Pie


  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 carrots, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1 large onion, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 large baking potato, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup dark beer (I used beef broth)
  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 sheet  frozen puff pastry, thawed but cold
  • 1 large egg yolk, beaten with 1 tablespoon water


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees . In a skillet, combine the beef, carrots, onion, celery, garlic and potato and cook, breaking up the meat, over medium-high heat until the beef is cooked through and some liquid has evaporated, about 15 minutes. Lower the heat to medium, add the beer and cook for 10 minutes. Add the cheese, 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Let cool.
  2. On a floured surface, roll 1 puff pastry sheet into a 12-inch round. Place in a 10-inch skillet or deep pie dish. Roll the remaining puff pastry sheet into an 11-inch round. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat mixture to the skillet. Lightly brush the edge of the crust with some of the egg wash, then place the second sheet on top. Press the edges to seal, then trim to a 1/2-inch edge.
  3. Place the pie on a baking sheet. Brush the top with more of the egg wash and cut an "X" into the pastry. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Bake for 45 minutes, tenting with foil if the crust darkens too quickly. Transfer to a rack to cool for 15 minutes

Monday, March 12, 2012

Crayon Art

I'm a total Pinterest addict! This project has been on my to-do list from the very beginning. I just knew it would look great on my son's wall, and I was right! Here is the finished product:
So here are the supplies needed:
64 count Crayola crayons + 48 Count Crayola Crayons
16 X 20 inch stretched canvas
Glue gun and glue sticks
blow dryer
finishing spray

What I did:
1. Took out the colors of crayons I wanted and arranged them according to my liking. I arranged them in a wave-like pattern because I think it gave it an interesting twist instead of just lining them up.
2. Glue the crayons onto the canvas, making sure the Crayola name is showing.
3. Use the blow dryer on hot/high setting to melt the crayons.
4. Spray with finishing spray.

This cost me about $10 and took less than an hour. LOVE IT!!!

 (and a BIG thank you to my sister who helped me make it!!!)