Thursday, February 27, 2014

One Pot Cheeseburger Casserole ***

I just love the "one pot" dishes.  I've always loved one dish meals, but there have been so many new stovetop ones going around Pinterest lately (see One Pot Wonder Southwest Pasta and One Pot Wonder Chicken Lo Mein).  It's pretty awesome.  This was great, just as I knew it would be.  I don't know that it's necessarily a cheeseburger taste, but I would say it's more like a fancy Hamburger Helper, lol.  But it was delicious nonetheless.  I stirred the cheese directly into the pasta before serving, just to make it easier.  I put a small sprinkle on each serving as well, to give it a little more pizzazz, but that way, I didn't risk the kids making a mess when they stirred the cheese into their bowls. :-)

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ DamnDelicious)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1-1/2 pounds ground beef
1 onion, diced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
2 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup ketchup
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
2 cups water
1 pound rotini pasta
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 Roma tomato, diced (optional)
2 green onions, sliced (optional)

Heat olive oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add ground beef and onion and cook until beef has browned, about 3-5 minutes, making sure to crumble the beef as it cooks; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Drain excess fat.
Stir in tomatoes, tomato sauce, chicken broth, ketchup, mustard, pasta and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer until pasta is cooked through, about 13-16 minutes.
Remove from heat and top with cheese. Cover until cheese has melted, about 2 minutes.
Serve immediately, garnished with tomato and green onions, if desired.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Ravioli Casserole with Spinach and Mozzarella ***

I just adore spinach.  I really and truly do.  I also like ravioli (although it falls second to tortellini - yum!). This was my third time to make this recipe, and we still loved it.  Once again, I really didn't make many changes.  I doubled the recipe, put it in a 9x13 (I like to have leftovers for dh's lunches) and added a TON more spinach.  Other than that, I pretty much stuck to the plan.  Although, I did use some shrimp scampi ravioli that I came across at the store today.  So good!  Definitely better than plain old cheese.  Last time I made it, I added in a handful of chopped grilled chicken, since hubby doesn't think it's a meal if it doesn't have meat.  That went really well too.  I didn't preboil my ravioli, and they were still perfect.  Everyone loved it once again, so I need to remember to make it more often!

(Amy - amylz)

1 pkg. fresh cheese-filled ravioli
1 jar pasta sauce
2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
2 cups baby spinach

Cook the ravioli in a generous amount of lightly salted water for 3 minutes, or until firm/tender. Scoop out the ravioli with a slotted spoon into a large bowl of ice-cold water. When chilled, drain the ravioli well. Preheat the oven to 350F. Spoon 1/4 of the pasta sauce into the bottom of 8-inch square baking dish. Layer 1/3 of the ravioli on top of the sauce. Top the ravioli with 1/2 the spinach leaves. Top the spinach with 1/3 of the cheese. Top the cheese with 1/4 more of the sauce, 1/3 more of the ravioli, the rest of the spinach and 1/3 more of the cheese. Top the cheese with 1/4 more of the sauce and the remaining ravioli. Top the ravioli with the remaining sauce and cheese. Loosely cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 10-15 minutes, or until golden and bubbly.
Makes: 4 servings
* Amy's (luckymommyto2boys) notes: I double the recipe, put it in a 9x13, and cook for 30 minutes covered and 20 uncovered.  I don't preboil the refrigerated ravioli, and I sometimes add a handful of chopped grilled chicken.

Previous reviews:
11/15/10 ~ I saw this on Amy's blog and knew I had to make it ASAP.  I had two packages of refrigerated ravioli that were just waiting to go bad, and I am an absolute spinach fiend.  It was the perfect solution.  :)  It got raves all around.  Even dh gushed, and he's totally not a gusher.  I have strict instructions to make this one again soon, so I guess that tells how much my family likes it, huh?  ;)

Monday, February 24, 2014

Crockpot Creamy Italian Chicken ***

This is one of the recipes that I made back in 2007, before I even started my blog.  I had down that it was a recipe we liked, but I never rated it or reviewed it in my notes or anything.  I have several like that in my files, so I'm trying to work through them here and there.  We loved this one, though.  I made it with the tricolor rotini, and I used frozen chicken.  I started it a little late, so I had to cook on high for a bit at the first.  I'll do the frozen again, but next time, I'll do hours on low and then add the cream cheese and do another hour.  My crockpot runs pretty warm, so that's all the time it takes to cook from frozen.  I didn't bother mixing the cream cheese or anything.  I just added it the last hour, along with the mushrooms and soup.  At that point, I also shredded the chicken.  Then I stirred everything up and left it for the rest of the time.  When it was done, I stirred in the cooked noodles.  Perfect!  It does need a little pepper, but other than that, it's absolutely wonderful!

(Grace ~ TigMode)

4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
1 envelope Italian salad dressing mix
1/4 cup water
1 package (8oz) light cream cheese, softened
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 can (4 oz) mushroom stems and pieces, drained
hot cooked rice or noodles (I really like this served over spinach fettuccini or tri color rotini pasta)

Place chicken in slowcooker. Combine salad dressing mix and water; pour over chicken. cover and cook on low for 3 hours. In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and soup until blended. Stir in mushrooms. Pour over chicken. Cook 1 hour longer or until chicken juices run clear. Serve over rice or noodles.
*luckymommy/Amy's notes: I used frozen chicken and cooked a total of 5 hours.  During the last hour, I shredded the chicken and added the cream cheese, soup, and mushrooms directly to the crockpot and stirred well to combine.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Crockpot Cashew Chicken ***

I was pleasantly surprised by this.  The kids loved it, which really took me by surprise.  I've been down with a cold the past few days, so just threw everything in frozen (chicken and all veggies).  When it was done, I shredded the chicken and stirred in 4 cups of cooked white rice.  It had a little bit of heat to it, so I might cut back a bit on the red pepper next time.  I couldn't find rice wine vinegar, so I subbed apple cider vinegar (thanks to some online advice).  I would definitely make this again, and I would stick with cooking from frozen, since it makes things so much easier.

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ SallyCooks)

4 chicken breasts, cut into smaller pieces
3-4 cups frozen broccoli, cut into bite-size pieces
2 cups carrots, sliced
1 cup cashews (unsalted works best so as not to oversalt the recipe)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
6 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons ginger paste
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or less, to taste)
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup water or chicken broth

Layer chicken, cashews and vegetables in the crockpot.
Combine remaining ingredients except water and pour over chicken in crockpot.
Add water or broth if necessary so mixture is almost completely covered.
Cook for 2-4 hours on high or 4-8 hours on low.
*luckymommy/Amy's notes: I subbed apple cider vinegar for the rice wine vinegar.  I threw everything in the crockpot frozen and stirred  in 4 cups cooked rice at the end.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Ranch Corn Salad ****

This is one of my favorite salads.  I've doubled the recipe before for family gatherings, but for just the 4 of us, the quantities are perfect as written.  The first time I made it, I only used 1/4 of a jalapeno and picked it out of the kids' servings.  Since then, I just skip the jalapeno and use a can of green chilies.  It works perfectly for us.  I don't know what it is, but the corn and ranch blend together so well in this.  Then you add in the bacon, and I am just in heaven.  Big time favorite here.  I actually get cravings for this one fairly often in the summer.  :)

Photo courtesy of Recipezaar

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ Recipezaar)

1 (16 ounce) package frozen whole kernel corn, partially thawed
6-8 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
2 cloves garlic
1 fresh jalapeno, chopped
¼ cup chopped black olives
2-3 chopped green onions
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese (or Colby/Jack, etc.)
1 cup bottled ranch dressing (more or less, according to your taste)

Combine all the veggies.
Add the dressing, just enough to coat the vegetables well.
Gently stir in the cheese and bacon.
Refrigerate until serving.
*Amy's notes: I always replace the jalapeno with a can of green chilies.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Karen's Cheesy Enchilada Meatballs **

These meatballs were really good.  They were just kind of missing something for me, though.  I think it was because I served them on tortillas.  Next time, I believe I'm going to serve them over rice.  I'm also thinking I might mix some sour cream in there before serving, just to cut down a bit on the flavor of the enchilada sauce.  I'm definitely going to make again, though.  Hubby loved it, and both kids asked for seconds.

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ my friend Karen)

1 bag of meatballs
1 (10-3/4 oz) can of cheddar cheese soup
3 cans of enchilada sauce
Shredded fiesta blend cheese

Combine meatballs, soup, and enchilada sauce in crockpot.  Sprinkle as much cheese as you like on top.
Cook on low all day.  Can be served over rice or on tortillas.

Slow Cooker Three Envelope Pot Roast Sliders ****

I've made this a few times already, but we just love it.  It is hands-down the very best roast I have ever had in my life.  And that's coming from a woman who normally can't stand beef roast.  The entire family LOVES it.  I did the sliders, since we all love the Hawaiian rolls.  For the kids, I didn't do the chipotle sauce.  I simply put ketchup on theirs.  The first time I made it, I was looking for the salsa on the Mexican foods aisle and came across a Taco Bell brand of Creamy Chipotle Sauce, so I just used that instead of following that portion of the recipe.  Now that's the only way we'll eat it.  I cannot rave enough about this one.  You have the saltiness of the meat/gravy combo, the sweetness of the rolls, and the slight spiciness of the chipotle sauce.  It is pure perfection.  The only downside is when you cook it on a Sunday and have to sit and smell the amazing smell of it all day while knowing that you just can't eat it yet.  :)

(willowing3 ~ via Six Sisters' Stuff)

1 (3-4 lb) beef roast
1 cup water
1 cup salsa
1 envelope onion soup mix
1 envelope Italian dressing mix
1 envelope Au Jus mix

Whisk together water, salsa and seasoning packets. Place roast in slow cooker. Pour seasoning mixture over roast. Cook on low for 8-10 hours, or high for 4-5 hours.

Three Envelope Pot Roast recipe (above), shredded
1 pkg. King's Hawaiian Rolls
Sliced Swiss cheese (1 slice per slider)
Creamy Chipotle Sauce (recipe below)

Cut each roll in half and place on a baking sheet. Place a slice of Swiss cheese on the bottom half of each roll. Place baking sheet in oven with broiler on low. Broil for 1-2 minutes or until edges of the rolls are golden and cheese has melted (be sure to watch them closely so they don't burn!). Remove baking sheet from oven.
Place a spoonful of shredded beef on top of each roll with Swiss cheese on it. Spread Creamy Chipotle sauce on the top half of each roll. Assemble each slider by placing the top half of the roll on top of the bottom.

Creamy Chipotle Sauce:
1/4 cup sour cream (I used fat free)
2 Tbsp chili sauce
2 tsp creamy horseradish sauce (I used Kraft)

Monday, February 10, 2014

Crockpot Cheesy Veggie Rotini ***

I originally set out to make the Slow Cooker Inside-Out Ravioli, from  Once I started making it, though, I ended up making so many changes that I doubt the taste is the same as hers.  I figured I'd better give it a different name.  I definitely want to give her credit for the inspiration, though.

This was absolutely delicious!  I'm on a tricolor garden rotini kick right now, so that was the reason behind my first change.  I also am completely crazy about spinach and the three-pepper onion blend (as I've mentioned before, lol),  I just can't even describe the deliciousness.  It's so easy to throw together.  If you had the meat already cooked and frozen (which I often do), you could just throw it all in the crockpot together and up the cook time a bit.  I'd be willing to bet I do that in the near future.  Everyone loved it, and plates were cleaned all around.

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy)

1 lb ground turkey (or lean ground beef)
1 package frozen three-pepper and onion blend
1-2 tsp garlic powder (your preference)
1 (24 oz) jar of plain pasta sauce
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
3 tsp Italian Seasoning
2 cups fresh spinach
16 oz tricolor rotini, cooked
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
2 cups mozzarella, shredded

Brown the ground turkey, onion, peppers, and garlic powder.  While meat is cooking, add pasta sauce, tomatoes, Italian seasoning, and spinach to 5-6 quart crockpot. Drain meat and stir into crockpot.
Cook on low for 4-5 hours (depending on your crockpot).
About 15 minutes before serving, add 1-1/2 cups of mozzarella cheese, Parmesan, and al-dente cooked pasta. Stir well to mix in sauce evenly.
Sprinkle individual servings with remaining mozzarella.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Slow Cooker Chicken Philly Sandwiches ***

This is not the first time I've made this one, but I wanted to update with some changes.  I forgot to thaw the chicken overnight, and it was way too busy this morning, with rushing around to ball games.  I instead just threw the chicken breasts in the crockpot with everything else (no mixing) and stuck that baby on high for 4 hours.  I shredded the chicken when it was done, and everything was perfect.  That's how I'll be doing it from now on (using the frozen breasts), because it really makes things so much easier.  Oh, I also threw in one of those bags of frozen three-pepper and onion blend.  I do seriously love those things.

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ Food, Family, & Finds)

2 tablespoons butter
1 large sweet onion, sliced
2 green bell peppers, sliced
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced
2 tablespoons Dale’s Steak Seasoning
sliced Mozzarella cheese
hoagie rolls

Spray a 3 – 4 quart slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray and turn to LOW heat.
Add butter, onions and green peppers.
Toss chicken with steak seasoning, salt and pepper, then add to slow cooker.
Cover and cook for 5 hours.
Serve on hoagies with a slice of cheese melted on top.
*luckymommy's notes: I dumped frozen chicken breasts in the crock with everything else and cooked on high for 4 hours.  I put the rolls on a cookie sheet, opened them, and added a slice of cheese to each.  Then I stuck them under the broiler for a couple minutes, just long enough to melt the cheese and toast up the bread a bit.

Previous reviews:
8/8/13 ~ I've had this on my "to try" list for a while now, but when someone posted it on the BBC Recipe Swap board the other day, it reminded me to put it in the lineup.  So very glad I did!  It was really yummy.  I had never even heard of Dale's Steak Seasoning before, but I was able to find it on the aisle with A-1 at Walmart.  I love it!  It reminds me of A-1, without the little kick to it.  It has more seasonings in the flavor as well.  It's hard to describe, but it's really good.  In fact, my only change that I would make to this would be to add about one extra tablespoon of the sauce next time.  I don't think the flavor carries through to it enough.  Also, I cut my chicken in small chunks and used my 6-qt crock.  It was done in about 4 hours.  I put the rolls on a cookie sheet, opened them, and added a slice of cheese to each.  Then I stuck them under the broiler for a couple minutes, just long enough to melt the cheese and toast up the bread a bit (to prevent sogginess).  My kids who have sworn against green peppers said that they actually enjoyed them in here.  Probably because they are so softened by the slow cooking.  I'll definitely be making this one again!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

One Pot Wonder Southwest Pasta ****

I loved this one!  It was a hit for all of us.  The chicken and pasta are both perfectly cooked, which kind of surprised me.  This was from the same website as the One Pot Wonder Chicken Lo Mein, so I shouldn't have been surprised.  We really enjoyed that one too.  I normally am not a huge fan of black beans, but you can't really taste them in here, since you rinse them before cooking.  I cooked mine for 15 minutes and then let it sit for 5.  I used a frozen three pepper and onion blend (I love those things!), so this took very little prep for me.  Will definitely be making this again.

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ TheWholesomeDish)

1 (13.5 oz) box of whole wheat rotini (or any pasta you like)
2 cups frozen corn kernels
1 medium green bell pepper cut into thin strips
1/2 medium red onion, sliced
1 (15 oz) can Rotel canned tomatoes and chilies (I used the Mexican blend with lime and cilantro)
1/4 cup taco seasoning (I used one packet)
1/2 tsp salt
4 cups fat-free chicken (or vegetable) broth
1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup Mexican cheese blend, plus more for topping (Optional)

Add all but the last 2 ingredients (beans and cheese) to a large pot. Stir, cover, and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, covered, for 12-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. There should be 1/4 to 1/2 inch of liquid in the bottom of the pot when it is done.
Remove from heat. Stir in the black beans and cheese (optional). Cover and let it rest for about 3 to 5 minutes to warm the beans, melt the cheese, and absorb the excess liquid.
luckymommy/Amy's notes: I added 2 uncooked boneless/skinless chicken breasts cut into small pieces to the first step.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Chicken Enchilada Crescents ***

Oh wow.  These are amazing!  I made the mistake of buying the larger chicken tenders, so they were definitely not pretty.  I just rolled out the crescents a little thinner and upped the temp to 400.  The flavor was fabulous, though.  I used shredded fiesta blend cheese, since that's what I had on hand.  So good.  These made for a perfect Sunday lunch for us and the kiddos.  Definitely going to be doing them again soon!

(Dottie ~ hokiesmom ~ via

8 fully cooked fried chicken fingers (I used Purdue all natural tenders)
8 slices cheddar cheese, cut in half
1 can crescent rolls
1 (10oz) can enchilada sauce (there is plenty left over and I used some as a dipping sauce)

Preheat oven to 375.
Separate crescent rolls into 8 triangles. Pour sauce into a bowl or saucepan. Place one half slice of cheddar cheese on top of crescent roll. Dunk chicken finger into enchilada sauce and place on top of cheese. Roll up crescent and place on cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining chicken fingers and crescents. Bake for 12 minutes. Remove from oven and top each crescent with remaining half slice of mozzarella cheese. Bake for additional 5-8 minutes.