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breakfast burritos

17 Oct

Wow. What a freaking week. I’ve been busy with my little man on the couch looking like this:

It’s been a super hard week, for more than one reason. I plan to blog my thoughts, as I’ve come to some new revelations about myself sort of. And not all of them good, at all. But I need to wrap my brain around the whole week because it’s seriously mush right now. Jay and I have slept 3 hours MAX in a row for the past week because he’s been so sick. AND difficult. AND moody. AND grumpy. AND temper-tantrum throwing.

Rough, is an understatement.

But we’ve made it, obviously! And I’m hoping that his fever GOES AWAY.

Anyways.

Through this week I’ve been struggling to be mom, wife, house cleaner, cook, working mom, photographer etc and it’s been a challenge to balance it all. It’s ALWAYS a challenge to balance it all. But when you have one of your kiddos demanding EVERYTHING YOU HAVE because they are sick, that on top of everything else makes for a stressful week. I obviously let most of it fly out the window to care for him. And I was happy to and I’d do it ALL over again, for sure. BUT, here I am at the end of the week, preparing to start ANOTHER one with this weeks AND last weeks to-do list staring me in the face. So I started with grocery shopping.

I should start by saying that I’m taking my cues here from my best friend, Alex Evjen of AVE STYLES. She is the bomb and an inspiration in my life. She recently did a blog post about finding all your recipes from Pinterest. Check out that blog post HERE. I’m totally addicted to Pinterest. So I was fascinated by her post, for sure! And she inspired me to not only pin meals that I WANT to make, but to actually DO it.

I’ve actually started doing this a lot with Pinterest. Why pin stuff if you aren’t actually going to try it at some point?

So, with that in mind, I made my grocery list and included ingredients from meals I saw on Pinterest that I’ve really been wanting to try! SO FUN.

I started with these breakfast burritos. And I’ve already tried one and YUM. You can make them ahead of time and freeze them in your freezer! So breakfast is easy AND it’s not processed ingredients. If you’re like me, you don’t have time to cook in the mornings either. Nor do you want to. BUT, what I DO want is for my family to eat well. So I’ve had to get creative with how I do this and make it work for my family.

I’ve been trying to be vegan (more on THAT later too) and so I’m really conscious about the ingredients I use. In these burritos I DID use eggs, which are NOT vegan, I am aware. BUT I used Soy Chorizo (called Soy-rizo), almond cheese, and red potatoes. And eggs.

These are SO good. With this recipe, I managed to make 15 burritos to freeze in the freezer. The recipe says it can make 24 burritos. SO….. I guess I like big fatty burritos or something. HA. But 15 is actually probably all I have room for in my freezer, so I’m totally happy with that!

And after all that, here’s the recipe! You’ll love it. It’s a great idea to cook meals ahead for breakfast too! If mornings at your house are anything like mine, this is all you might have time for. And having burritos filled with wholesome, organic ingredients all ready to heat up is EXACTLY what I need right now.

Well, I actually need a personal chef. Don’t we all? For real.

Ingredients 

1 lb breakfast sausage
1 lb bacon
1 cup chopped ham (I didn’t use any of the meats, but I used over a pound of the Soy-rizo, which you can find at Sprouts or Whole Foods)
2 pound of red potatoes, cubed into bite size pieces
16 oz cheese (any kind you like, but I used cheddar almond cheese and jalapeno almond cheese)
24 soft taco tortillas (I used flour)
12 eggs, extra large
1/2 c milk
1/3 c olive oil
1 tsp Seasoning Salt or any seasoning you prefer
salt and pepper

Directions

1. Cook the meat(s) that you’ve decided to use, however they cook.

2. Roast the red potatoes. I tossed the potatoes with 1/3 c olive oil, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper.  Use additional seasoning if desired. Roast for 30 minutes until golden brown. Start checking at 20 minutes.

3. Wisk one dozen eggs and 1/2 c milk in a bowl until well combined. Heat a large skillet with nonstick cooking spray (or melt 1 Tbls butter) over medium heat. Spray skillet and add egg mixture. Cook eggs over medium heat stirring occasionally until eggs are set. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

4. Place 5-10 tortillas on a plate and cover with a wet paper towel. Heat in microwave for 30 seconds at 50% power. This should be your last step. Heat the tortillas in batches.

5.  Set up an assembly line with all the ingredients. Place the tortillas on a large baking sheet or cutting board. Build your burritos including all the ingredients that you desire into each burrito. Fold in the sides of the tortilla. Roll burrito up. Pat firmly on top of the burrito making sure the seam is on the bottom. Make sure the burrito is tightly rolled.

6. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place burritos on the sheet, seam side down. Press down on the burritos again lightly making sure that the edges are tucked in. Place baking sheet in the freezer for an hour to flash freeze the burritos. Remove from freezer and wrap burritos in plastic wrap individually. Place in a gallon size ziploc bag. I ended up with 15 burritos that all fit into two separate gallon size bags.

7. TO HEAT THE BURRITOS: Remove plastic wrap. Wrap burrito in wet paper towel. Heat for 3 minutes on 50% power. Serve with fresh salsa! YUM.

Great for busy moms with busy families.

* I found this recipe through Pinterest, but it links to this blog where you can see the recipe as I read it.

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mac un-cheese

13 Jun

Most of you probably don’t know that I have been toying with the idea of being vegan for about a month now. Yes, vegan. I’m aware that there is a stereotype that is associated with being vegan. And most people raise their eyebrows at the mere THOUGHT of it when I say that I am in fact, mostly vegan. But I’ve really come across some life changing information, people and conversations that have led me to not only cut A LOT of different things out of my diet, but to completely change the way I think and approach food.

And I’ve never felt better in my entire life.

I’ve pretty much cut out all cheese, eggs, milk, and meat. I don’t even cook with these ingredients hardly anymore. And I could totally fill you in on all the reasons why I am doing this and I’m sure we could have a lengthy conversation about all the different controversies about the food industry or ethical reasons why we should or shouldn’t eat meat or we could probably even bring the government into the conversation too. There’s a LOT to talk about on the topic.

At the end of the day, how we all choose to eat is a personal decision, isn’t it?

So aside from gaining a wealth of knowledge that frankly, has scared the crap out of me, I also am just choosing to eat consciously. Whenever I approach a meal now, I really have to think about and decide what I’m going to put into my body. Have I gone exactly an entire month without eating ANY dairy or ANY meat? No. There is room for flex in my diet and in the way I’m choosing to eat. But I am mostly vegan these days and it really, really agrees with me.

So I feel awesome.

If you want more information about why I’m eating this way, let’s go to coffee. Call me. It’s too long to type. Even though I’m sure I’ll write about pieces of it from time to time. But this is almost it for now so let’s go grab something at Starbucks and I’ll chat your face off about all that I’ve learned.

SO. Since we are eating different, I’m constantly looking for new recipes that are similar to what we used to eat. And by similar I mean recipes that are super easy, don’t take a TON of time and that taste good. I still don’t have hours and hours and hours to cook in my kitchen. And even if I did have time, lets be honest, I still wouldn’t be a gourmet chef.

My sister and brother-in-law have joined us in eating vegan and she found this awesome recipe. We LOVED this meal so I had to share it here. And the last time I shared a recipe was these French Dip Sandwiches in February and while, these are very, very yummy, kind of activate my gag reflex now at the thought of them.

This is macaroni and cheese with no cheese or dairy at all. Hence the name ‘Mac Un-Cheese’. Ha. I was a little hesitant at the thought of what this might taste like, but it was SO good. And it was 100% vegan. We served it with meatless ‘chicken tenders’ on the side and the biggest salad ever full of vegetables like brocolli, snap peas, carrots, cherry tomatos etc. YUM.

If you are vegan, vegetarian or even just incorporating ‘Meatless Mondays’ into your household, you gotta try this recipe. It was SO easy and SO good.

Ingredients 

– 1 lb (16 oz) pasta of your choice. I used elbow macaroni.

– 2 cups vanilla soy/rice milk

– 2 Tbsp soy margarine

– 2 Tbsp vegan mayonnaise (such as Vegenaise or Nayonaise)*

– 1 cup nutritional yeast

– 1 tsp turmeric

– 1/4 tsp ground sage

– 1 tsp salt

– 3/4 tsp ground pepper

– 1/2 tsp garlic powder

Directions

1. Cook pasta and drain

2. In a large bowl, combine pasta and all other ingredients.

3. Mix thoroughly and enjoy!

*Optional, but recommended for creamier meal

Mix in steamed veggies too for a variety if you want! This meal had so much flavor!

french dip sandwiches

9 Feb

I’ve sort of started making it a habit to cook most nights of the week. I’ve FINALLY gotten this area of our lives under control enough to be able to do this for my family. What a relief too, because it stressed me out to eat out as much as we did. Now, I’m no Martha Stewart and we don’t eat the fanciest of foods, but it’s gotta be better than take out, right?

I hope so.

I’m always looking for very easy recipes that are affordable. Like I said, we don’t eat fancy foods, I don’t like to cook with weird ingredients, and to top it off I’m still learning how to cook well! I’m not one of those people that can pull three items out of my pantry and turn it into an amazing feast. I envy people like that, in the best way possible. So I’m always looking for easy things to cook but that are really scrumptious too! We don’t eat fancy, but we DO like GOOD food.

I have quickly become OBSESSED (understatement) with the website called Our Best Bites. Oh gosh. Do they have amazing food and recipes there! And they are coming out with a cookbook shortly here and I CAN NOT WAIT to get my hands on it! Everything I’ve made from this site has been simple and has turned out well. Even Jason asks for some of these meals each week, which is a new experience for me! All of our marriage he hasn’t ever really ASKED for certain things that I cook. So that’s been fun and exciting for me!

I made these French Dip Sandwiches for the first time a couple weeks ago and they were a total hit. Jason was even talking about them the next day! So it’s safe to say that I’ve made them again and that they are on our regular ‘menu’ rotation. This is a crockpot recipe and takes virtually no time at all to throw it in and let it cook all day. And it’s definitely worth the wait for dinner time to roll around. So, make sure you invite some company over when you make these yummy sandwiches because you’ll definitely want to share them! I served them with these homemade french fries which are even EASIER to make.

Now I’m hungry.

Ingredients

– 1 2.5-3 lb. beef roast (you can use a frozen roast if you want)
– 2 Tbsp. olive oil
– salt and pepper
– 2 1-ounce packages dry onion soup mix
– 2 c. water
– 2 cans beef broth
– 6-8 large buns (or more…6 would be VERY generous servings!)
– Swiss, provolone, or mozzarella cheese, shredded or sliced

Directions

1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat and rub roast with salt and pepper.

2. When very hot, carefully place roast in pan and sear on all sides. You’re not cooking the meat, you’re just browning it quickly on all sides to add flavor and seal in the juices.

3. Place in crockpot and sprinkle with onions soup mix. Pour water and beef broth over roast.

4. Cook 8-10 hours on low or cook 4-5 hours on high and another 3-4 hours on low. It’s hard to screw this part up; basically, the longer it cooks, the more tender it will be. But you know it’s done when you pop a fork in it and the meat just falls apart. When meat is ready, shred with a fork.

5. Place meat in crusty rolls. Top with cheese and broil open-faced in the oven or toaster oven for a few minutes, until bread is golden and cheese is melty. And don’t even think about walking away–things can go from lightly-toasted to on fire within a matter of seconds when you’re using your broiler.

6. Ladle juices into small cups for dipping and enjoy!

** I got this recipe directly of OurBestBites.com.

chicken taquitos

18 Nov

Last weekend, we headed up North for my sister’s bachelorette party. We stayed in an amazing cabin and had such a great, relaxing time eating, shopping and just hanging out. It was much needed for all of us and a great way to celebrate her as she’s getting ready to tie the knot!

We ate out a few times while we were up there, but we also cooked a couple meals so we could stay in the cozy cabin and relax together too. I put together the “menu” before we left and I stumbled upon a new website that I’m starting to really love! It’s called Our Best Bites and it’s a compilation of recipes from two mammas who love to cook and enjoy finding healthy recipes for their families. It got me excited because I’m ALWAYS looking for easy and healthy recipes. Even though I don’t think I’m the greatest cook and it’s super hard for me to even find time to cook. Goodness. Oh well. At least I’m trying! So when I find websites like this, I’m all over it.

I found this recipe for Chicken Taquitos and I was stoked to be able to make this for a meal while we were out of town. I just wanted to cook something easy and familiar for the girls. Something we could eat with our hands while we were having a blast at the cabin. And it was a total hit! So I had to share it here. It’s a great simple meal to make and it could even be great for lunch! And it’s definitely a healthier version to eating mexican food out or even the boxed taquitos. It’s very easy to make, which I’m all about, and they tasted SO good! My sister made her homemade guacamole to dip them in which topped the whole meal off for sure.

Check out this recipe and check out that website!

Ingredients

– 1/3 C (3 oz) cream cheese
– 1/4 C green salsa
– 1 T fresh lime juice
– 1/2 t cumin
– 1 t chili powder
– 1/2 t onion powder
– 1/4 t granulated garlic, or garlic powder
– 3 T chopped cilantro
– 2 T sliced green onions
– 2 C shredded cooked chicken
– 1 C grated pepperjack cheese

– small corn tortillas (and actually, flour ones are really good as well)
– kosher salt
– cooking spray

Directions

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

2. 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.)

3. 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 are coming unrolled right away, just try heating them longer and try the paper towel thing.

4. 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.

5. 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.

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

…Dip ’em in any dip, guacamole, or salsa of your choice. They are SO good!

bruschetta chicken bake

31 Aug

My mom and sisters were planning on coming over on Sunday for dinner. We do it every week- either at our home or at my mom’s. But either way, we try to always touch base and have dinner together once a week. I love my family. I look forward to Sunday’s for this reason- well, and many others for that matter. But dinner with them is always how I end Sundays and I love that. Plus, Cruz gets his weekly dose of his Grammy and Aunties, whom he adores! I try to get him together with my mom more than that, but we usually can for sure count on Sundays. I love it.

So this past Sunday, it dawned on me that my mom and sister’s were coming over for dinner and I hadn’t made it to the grocery store to pick up stuff for dinner. I have a one track mind these days, and that’s on this pregnancy. Then I realized it in the middle of Cruz’s nap so there was no way I could leave the house and they were all coming over. So I grabbed one of my Kraft Foods magazines that I have saved. I love these magazines- they are FULL of quick and easy recipes that I refer to often. I found this recipe and I actually had all the ingredients already! It was super simple to make and it made enough for 6 of us to eat! And I actually had some leftovers! So if you’re looking for something simple to make for dinner tonight, check your cupboards. You just might have all these ingredients and it would be worth it. Not only did it take me no time to make, it was so good and yummy- I can’t wait to make it again! Give it a try!

Ingredients

– 1 can diced tomatoes, undrained

– 1 pkg (6 oz) Stove Top Stuffing Mix for Chicken

– 1/2 cup water

– 2 cloves garlic, minced

– 1 1/2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces

– 1 tsp dried basil leaves

– 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions

1. Heat oven to 400 degrees

2. Mix tomatoes, stuffing mix, water and garlic just until stuffing mix is moistened in a medium size mixing bowl. Set aside.

3. Layer chicken, basil and cheese in 3-qt. casserole or 13×9-inch baking dish.

4. Top with stuffing mixture. Bake 30 min. or until chicken is done.

I paired it with Texas toast and a veggie. Delish!!

one-pan chicken and potato bake

16 Aug

You guys. You have to try this. It’s easy. It’s delicious. It’s easy.

Lately, I’ve been really trying to focus on cooking a little more. During my entire pregnancy, I haven’t wanted to cook much. Partly, I haven’t had the desire. But there was a point in my pregnancy that anything I cooked would make me severely nauseous. If I cooked it and watched the ingredients come together, I couldn’t eat it. No matter what it was. I’m a long way from that phase, but I still haven’t completely enjoyed it much. I don’t feel great these days and I don’t have a ton of extra time to cook all day. Plus it’s hot. And I don’t really want to be in the kitchen- a place that only makes the house hotter. And it doesn’t help that I’m not really the best cook on the planet. Not even close. I’m always looking for easy and quick recipes that can be made fast with inexpensive ingredients. We are on a pretty strict budget these days, so less is more for us.

I came across this recipe in an old Kraft cook book that I have and I thought I’d give it a whirl! And I’m pleased to say, it was SO GOOD. Even Jason really liked it (which is saying a lot because he can tend to be picky) and said he’d eat it again if I made it! I had all the ingredients all ready, except for the chicken. So when I went grocery shopping I picked up some drumsticks on sale and with a coupon, making this meal SUPER inexpensive. I added a side of green beans to the dish because well, you know… Veggies are important!

Try it out! It’s super simple and was really yummy!

Ingredients

– 4 bone-in chicken pieces (1.5 lbs)

– 4 large potatoes, cut into wedges

– 1/2 c. zesty Italian dressing

– 1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 400˚F

2. Place chicken and potatoes in 13×9-inch baking dish

3. Pour dressing over chicken and potatoes; sprinkle with cheese

4. Bake 1 hour or until chicken is cooked through (180˚F). Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.

Makes 4 servings

Substitute: To switch up the flavor, replace the potato wedges with sweet potatoes or acorn squash.



slow-cooker macaroni and cheese

3 Aug

I posted this probably over a year ago. But I really thought that it was worth mentioning again. My dear friend Katelyn (who I don’t get to see enough!!) made this one night when Jason and I were at her house a while back. And OMG, it was SO good! It’s Slow-Cooker Macaroni and Cheese and it’s to die for a little, I think! While it can’t be incredibly healthy for you, it is an easy option for dinner. It cooks relatively quickly and it takes less than 5 minutes to throw it all together.

But it doesn’t taste like it took 5 minutes to throw it all together! Wow! This is SO good! I made it on Sunday night when my family came over for dinner, which has become our usual Sunday tradition it seems. Try it out. It’s an easy option for dinner. And pair it with a salad if you wanna feel better about the calorie count!

Slow-Cooker Macaroni & Cheese

Ingredients

– 16 oz pre-cooked macaroni

– 13 oz evaporated milk

– 1 cup half and half

– 2 tsp salt (add more to liking)

– 1/2 tsp pepper (add more to liking)

– 3 cups milk

– 8 cups sharp cheddar cheese

Directions

1. Mix all ingredients together in your crock pot, setting aside 2 cups of the cheese.

2. Cook on low for 3-4 hours.

3. Use the 2 cups of cheese you set aside to sprinkle on top before you serve.

ENJOY!