Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Easy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake


1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1 box yellow cake mix
1/2 cup chocolate chips

***NOTE: Use the same measurements as directed on box of cake mix but replace the following:
-Instead of oil, use real butter
-Instead of water, use milk (2% is best, but anything will work)
-Use 1 extra eggs than the box mix calls for

Mix all ingredients (except chocolate chips) together in a large mixing bowl. **The cake batter will be a bit thicker than normal.
Pour cake mix into a greased 9x13 pan.
Sprinkle chocolate chips over the top of cake batter.

Bake as directed on package or until toothpick comes out clean when cake is tested. (Ovens will vary.. in my case the cake needed about 10 minutes more.)
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Monday, March 10, 2014

Ham & Cheese Casserole

-1 cup diced pre-cooked ham
-1 cup shredded mozerella cheese
-1 cup Greek yogurt cream cheese (I use the Kroger brand)
-1 box spaghetti noodles, cooked and drained
-1/4 cup parsley
-1/2 cup cooked bacon
-2 cans cream of chicken soup
-salt & pepper to taste

1. Mix together Spices cheese and cream of chicken soup.
2. Mix in thoroughly drained spaghetti noodles and meat.
3. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes. 
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Easy Breakfast Quiche


**Makes 2 8x8 or 1 9x13 size quiche.

-12 eggs
-1/4 cup milk
-2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
-1 pkg real bacon bits (or crumbled turkey sausage)
-2 Refrigerated pie crusts
-1 Tbsp. melted butter


1. Roll out pie crusts into greased pan(s).
2. Brush tops of pie crust with the melted butter.
3. Divide if necessary and put cheese and cooked meat into bottom or pie crust.
4. Whisk eggs with milk and salt & pepper to taste.
5. Pour raw egg mixture over meat and cheese & stir.
6. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
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Skinny Poppyseed Chicken

-3 cups chopped cooked chicken  **Cook chicken using your George Foreman or similar griddle, this is your healthiest cooking option
-1 (10 3/4-oz.) can cream of chicken soup, (low fat/ low sodium variety)
-1 (16-oz.) container plain Greek yogurt
-3 teaspoons poppy seeds
-1 sleeve low sodium or unsalted Ritz crackers
-1 Tbsp. light butter or fat free substitute

1. Combine first 4 ingredients. Spoon mixture into 9x13 inch baking dish.
2. Stir together crushed crackers and melted butter; sprinkle evenly over casserole.
3. Bake at 350° for 35 to 40 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
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Thursday, March 6, 2014

Sarah's Homemade Chili

Chili is one of my favorite things to make! 
  It's so simple and at the same time, so yummy! :D Just about everyone has a chili recipe.. but I thought I would share mine with all of you anyway! Some go for a more soupy version of chili, some a thick and hearty style, others fall somewhere in between. Mine tends to be more on the thick and hearty kind.. and in our house you always served it with noodles of some kind and often we had it with peanut butter sandwiches. What do you have with yours?

 (My recipe makes a large soup pot of chili for company! If you want less, reduce the recipe or make the big batch and freeze it in meal size portions!) 
Ingredients: 
-3 lbs ground turkey (hamburger is fine if you prefer) 
-5 cans tomatoes (One of each of the following: Salsa style, plain, with green chiles, garlic & onion, with jalapenos)
-1 can pinto beans, drained
-1 can light red kidney beans
-1 can hot chili beans
-2 large jalapenos, diced
- 1/2 cup chopped onion flakes (or fresh chopped onion)
-2 cans tomato sauce, (add more if you desire a more thin chili)
-1/4 cup chili powder
-Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Brown the ground turkey in a skillet & drain. 
2. Saute the onion and jalapeno in a small skillet. 
3. In a large soup pot on LOW heat, mix together all tomatoes, beans, & spices. Stir well and let simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
4. Add ground beef, onions and jalapenos and mix well. 
5. Simmer chili on MEDIUM heat for another 20 minutes, stirring frequently. Be sure to scrape the bottom of pan so the chili does not burn. 
6. Enjoy! :)
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Sunday, February 23, 2014

Apple Strawberry Cake


Apple Strawberry Cake
Ingredients: 
 -1 box white cake mix
-1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
 -1/2 cup strawberries, chopped small
-1/2 cup apples, chopped small

Directions:
 1. Mix Greek yogurt into cake mix.
2. Stir in apples and strawberries. 

3. Bake cake according to package directions. 
4. Let cake cool completely. 
5. Top cake with FAT FREE Cool- Whip and sliced strawberries.




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Crockpot Salsa Chicken


Crockpot Salsa Chicken

Ingredients:
-1 jar of salsa, any variety
-1 chicken breast per person, plus 1.
-1 packet taco seasoning

Directions:
1. Thaw chicken and place in bottom of crock pot.
2. Mix together taco seasoning and the jar of salsa.
3. Pour over the top of chicken, making sure to cover each piece.
4. Cook on LOW 4-6 hours, or on HIGH 2-3 hours.  You may also be interested in:

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Spicy Crockpot Pork

Ingredients:
- Pork loin, sized according to the # you are feeding.
- 1/2 block cream cheese
-1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
-1 small jar salsa, any variety
-lime juice, drizzled

Directions:
1. Cut slits in you pork loin over the surface of one side, not cutting completely through.
2. Place pork loin in bottom of crock pot, cutting to fit. (If necessary)
3. Mix together all other ingredients and pour over pork, using your spoon to fill between cuts in the meat.
4. Cook on HIGH for 4-5 hours.
5. Serve on taco shells with shredded cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, etc.

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Monday, February 17, 2014

Healthy Substitutions

We've been working hard around our house to make some healthy substitutions in our eating habits but when you love to cook sometimes it is hard to take your favorite recipes and throw them aside as unhealthy. However... not every "fattening" recipe has to be left out! You can still have many of your favorites and at the same time make healthy choices and eat well! :)

I love the ideas of using vegetables to fake a recipe we all love!
Love lasagna? Try it with zucchini slices in place of the noodles! :) (Try THIS recipe!!)
Craving a pizza? Make a cauliflower crust! (Learn how here!)
See my recipe below for my new favorite.. Spaghetti Squash with Marinara Sauce! Yum! :)
 Also try these ideas:

Recently I tried my hand at making a Spaghetti Squash and we were very pleased with the results!
Using spaghetti squash in place of spaghetti noodles or another pasta is a great way to eat a low carb and low calorie dinner! :) I suggest you give it a try! I hope you enjoy this dinner as much as we did!


To Make The Spaghetti Squash: 
There are lots of way to cook a spaghetti squash (which include oven baking, boiling, even microwaving!) but when I made ours I chose to use my crock pot. 

1. Before cooking the squash wash it well and remove all dirt and germs from the outside of the squash.
2. Secondly, with a sharp knife and very carefully cut slits into the squash on all sides and from top to bottom in various places. This will allow the squash to breath (and it won't do anything crazy like explode while cooking!). The slits need not be any larger then 1 inch cuts just be sure you have several over the surface of the entire squash. 
3. Put the squash into the crock pot and fill water to cover the squash.
4. Salt the water generously. 
5. Let the squash cook on LOW 6-8 hrs in your crock pot. 

WHEN YOU REMOVE THE SQUASH BE VERY CAREFUL! IT WILL BE VERY HOT! 

To Serve:
1. Cut the squash down the middle, horizontally. If you cut it lengthwise you will cut the "noodles" in half. 
2. Scoop out seeds and any remaining "gunk". 
3. Spoon out the noodle like middle of the squash. One average size squash produces all of the noodles you see in the photo above! Plenty for a family! :)
4. Serve with the marinara sauce of your choice & ENJOY!
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