Sunday, April 28, 2013

April 21-27, 2013

Sunday:  Pizza Night!

·         We had been with family all weekend, so I had no plans to cook this evening.  Plus, we had some friends coming to stay with us, so pizza was an easy option to feed everyone.

Monday:  Black Bean Spinach Enchiladas, Roasted Broccoli, & Rice

·          We had some good friends staying with us for a few nights, and Sharon made these delicious enchiladas and froze them the week before.  They were so very good!!  I will definitely be adding these to my menus in the future.  We served ours with roasted broccoli and Spanish rice with quinoa from CostCo.  Yum!  (

Tuesday:  Lasagna, Sautéed Spaghetti Squash, Whole Wheat Garlic Bread

·          I’m sure everyone has a lasagna recipe, so I won’t tire you with mine.   Truly, I think I make mine different just about every time!  What I will share is a delicious recipe for spaghetti squash.  It’s so, so tasty!

·          This is such a wonderful way to eat spaghetti squash…please try it!!!  (

Wednesday:  Ground Chicken & Veggie Tacos, Cilantro-Lime Rice, & Fresh Avocado Slices

Ground Chicken & Veggie Tacos
·          My friend, Meredith, made these tacos for us after Payton was born, and they are delicious.  It’s one of those dinners that tastes just a little different every time we have it, but we always enjoy it!

Ground Chicken  (I used 2 pounds.)
Finely chopped/diced veggies of your choice (I used 1 zucchini, 3 big carrots, & 2-3 big handfuls of spinach.)
1 Can Rotel
Taco Seasoning
Olive Oil
Minced Garlic

Cook the chicken with olive oil & minced garlic until no longer pink.  Add your finely diced veggies, Rotel, & taco seasoning.  Mix it all together until everything is heated through.  Serve with tortillas or chips of your choice.  We used corn tortillas and topped with some shredded cheese.

This ground chicken is delicious and healthy and very easy to freeze and have on hand for other meals.  I always make more than we need because it’s such a good leftover and great to freeze.

Cilantro-Lime Rice
·          Make your rice as directed.  Add butter, lime juice, fresh cilantro, & garlic salt.  Mix it all together and enjoy!

Thursday, Friday, & Saturday:  Chad was out of town, so we had dinner with my mom, my sister-in-law, & her kids on these evenings.

**  On another note, I will try to come up with a "search" feature for the blog so that you can more easily find recipes.  **

Sunday, April 21, 2013

April 14-20, 2013

Sunday:  Lunch – Flank Steak Quesadillas & Nachos

Flank Steak Quesadillas & Nachos
·      We used the meat leftover from the night before to make nachos for us and quesadillas for the boys.  It made a great lunch for all of us, and it was easy to throw together after church.  We added some fresh fruit and had a delightful lunch on our back porch.

Sunday:  Dinner – Cinnamon Raisin French Toast with Fresh Strawberries, Scrambled Eggs, & Bacon

Cinnamon Raisin French Toast
·      We had this a few weeks ago, and I was excited to have it again.  It’s just so good!!  Breakfast is also such an easy meal to put together, and the boys enjoy helping me crack the eggs.  They always clean their plates on breakfast night!

Monday:  Slow Cooker Three Envelope Pot Roast Sliders, Green Salad, & Carrot & Cucumber Sticks

Slow Cooker Three Envelope Pot Roast Sliders
·      This recipe is actually a combination of Six Sisters’ Three Envelope Pot Roast Sliders and You’re Too Crafty’s Best Pot Roast Ever.  I saw the Six Sisters recipe first and liked the idea of having pot roast sliders rather than traditional roast with sides.  But, I didn’t want the flavor of salsa, so I used a Coke instead, as suggested by You’re Too Crafty. 

So, I put my roast in the crock pot.  Then I mixed 1 packet of onion soup mix, 1 packet of Italian dressing mix, & 1 packet of Au Jus gravy mix with 1 cup of water.  I poured that on top of the roast, then poured a Coke on top of that.  I cooked it on high for 2 hours, then on low for 3-4 (my slow cooker cooks pretty hot).  It was SO, SO GOOD!  The house smelled amazing all afternoon!  Seriously, the gravy is so ridiculously delicious that I could have downed it with a straw.  J 

I used King’s Hawaiian Rolls, spicy mustard, & Havarti cheese to make our sliders.  I put the gravy in small bowls so we could dip our sliders into it.  I’m not kidding…these are DELISH!  Make them!

Tuesday:  Loaded Baked Potatoes Topped with Three Envelope Roast

·      We really enjoy leftovers when we can eat them in a completely different way than the night before.   I used the delicious roast left over from last night’s dinner and made tasty loaded baked potatoes.  Chad and I both love the loaded baked potatoes from Rudy’s BBQ, so this is our own “at home” version.  The roast was still amazing and went wonderfully on top of slow-baked potatoes with all the fixings.  This was a very filling way to make good use of scrumptious leftovers!  I poked holes in the potatoes with a fork and then rubbed the potatoes with olive oil, salt, & pepper before wrapping in foil and baking at 300 degrees for 3 hours.  The potato skin was just right and so tasty!

Wednesday:  Honey Lime Tilapia, Brown Rice with Quinoa, Balsamic Green Beans & Mushrooms, & Warm Buttered, Whole Wheat Bread

·      I haven’t made tilapia in quite a while, and I came across this new recipe and thought it sounded great.  It was actually quite yummy!  It’s incredible easy to make, and can be prepped a few hours ahead of time.  It had a really delicate flavor, which was just perfect for a warm, Spring evening.  (Thanks to

·      This is just a different way to kick up roasted green beans a bit.  Chad really likes mushrooms, and adding the balsamic flavor gave it a new twist!  (

Thursday:  Turkey Macaroni & Cheese, Roasted Broccoli & Carrots, Buttered Whole Wheat Bread

·      I found this recipe on Pinterest (of course) and thought it was worth a try.  It’s actually really similar to a beef and macaroni dish that I have made several times that we all enjoy.  This one takes much less time, and I used turkey instead of beef.   I’ll say that this was enjoyable, and everyone at the table ate it (Chad’s parents were over too!), but I actually prefer the other recipe.  However, this was certainly fast, so for a weeknight meal, it’s a good one.  (From

Friday & Saturday:  No meals at home 

·      We had the pleasure of having family in town this weekend, so we didn’t eat at home either night.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

April 7-13, 2013

Sunday:  Lunch – Slow Cooker Pesto Ranch Chicken, Rice, Spinach Salad, & Bread

·          We all really enjoyed this recipe from  My slow cooker cooks a little hot, so ours was easily done in under 4 hours.  I used chicken tenderloins – about 1.5 pound – and only about 2 cups of chicken broth (the recipe calls for 4 cups).  This was extremely easy to put in the slow cooker before leaving for church. 

Once we came home, I had lunch on the table in 10 minutes by using microwave brown rice and quinoa from CostCo, making up a tasty spinach salad with strawberries, feta, & balsamic, and toasting up some fresh whole grain bread under the broiler.  Yum!

Sunday:  Dinner – Pesto Ranch Chicken Toasted Sandwiches, Fresh Fruit Salad, & Chips

·          I used the leftover chicken from lunch to make some wonderful toasty sandwiches!  I bought King’s Hawaiian Sub Rolls (delish!) and spread on mustard – spicy for Chad and me, regular for the boys.  Then I placed the cut up chicken on top, added fresh baby spinach, and finally a slice of creamy Havarti cheese.  I had these all on a cookie sheet and put them under the broiler for 3 minutes.  The buns were nice and toasty, and the cheese was perfectly melty!  We also had a fresh fruit salad and chips.  I love when I use my leftovers in a new and yummy way!

Monday:  Italian Crescent, Spinach Salad with Strawberries & Feta, & Roasted Carrots

Italian Crescent
·         I’m not sure where this recipe came from, but I’ve had it as long as Chad & I have been married.  It’s so easy, and it’s made with Crescent rolls, so you know it’s tasty.  I haven’t made it in a year or two, and I’m not sure why!

1 lb ground beef
1 jar spaghetti sauce or 26 oz homemade sauce
1 bag grated mozzarella cheese (I bought a block and grated it myself)
8 oz sour cream
1 can crescent rolls

- Brown meat and drain.
- Pour in sauce and heat through.  Then pour in bottom of 9x13 dish.
- Mix together cheese & sour cream - spread over top of meat mixture.
- Layer crescent rolls on top.
- Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes until lightly browned.

Roasted Carrots
·         Cut fresh carrots in half lengthwise and crosswise so that you have small sticks.  Toss with a little olive oil, salt, & pepper.  Roast at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes until they start to turn slightly brown at the edges.

Tuesday:  Parmesan Crusted Chicken in Cream Sauce with Rice & Asparagus

·          I’ve also had this recipe for several years.   It came from a Kraft foods magazine I used to receive in the mail.  It’s quick preparation makes it a great meal for a weeknight or a busy mom.  I like to put some of the sauce on the roasted asparagus as well when I serve it.  Yum!

Wednesday:  Crock Pot Pinto Beans, Bisquick Garlic & Cheese Biscuits, & Sauteed Spinach with Feta

Crock Pot Pinto Beans
·          This was a crazy, cold day here in Frisco, so a warm pot of beans sounded just perfect.  I had frozen some of our ham from Easter knowing it would be wonderful added to a slow-cooked recipe of pinto beans.  They were delicious!  My mom gave me the tip once to wait to salt the beans until they are cooked so they don’t get tough.  So, once they were cooked, I turned my crock pot to warm and added salt, pepper, Tony Chachere’s, & garlic powder.  Usually we have cornbread with beans, but I saw these Bisquick Garlic Cheddar Biscuits and decided they looked pretty tasty!

Sautéed Spinach
·          The trick for sautéed spinach is to not overcook it.  Heat olive oil and garlic in a sauté pan.  Add the spinach - remember it wilts down to almost nothing, so add a ton!  Stir it around in the oil, add salt and pepper, then put a lid on your pan and leave it for 1 minute.  Stir it all around again, making sure all the spinach has some oil on it, put the lid back on, and wait 1 minute.  At the end of this minute, your spinach should be perfect!  I topped ours with crumbled feta...a fave!

Thursday:  Taco Calzones with Roasted Green Beans

Taco Calzones
·          This is a recipe that can be easily modified to use any meat and veggie ingredients you have on hand.  Making calzones just changes it up a bit from having a pizza.  J

½ lb ground beef
½ pkg taco seasoning (I used Homemade Taco Seasoning)
1 can refrigerated pizza dough
Pasta or pizza sauce
1 cup shredded cheddar
2 T chopped cilantro
1 T melted butter
Garlic salt

Cook ground beef.  Stir in ¼ cup water and ½ packet of taco seasoning.  Cook 4 minutes and set aside.  Divide dough into 2 squares and spread on sauce.  Divide meat, cilantro & cheese on each; fold over and seal.  Brush tops with melted butter and garlic salt. Bake on cookie sheet at 375 for 20-25 minutes.

Friday:  Balsamic-Glazed, Grilled Salmon, Brown Sugar Carrots, & Roasted Broccoli

·          It was a gorgeous afternoon and evening, so Chad was more than happy to grill for me.  I used this recipe from Hun…What’s for Dinner?  We just grilled ours rather than baking it.  I really liked the flavors of this, and the boys even ate it.  Salmon can have a strong flavor, but grilling it with this glaze balanced it nicely.  We enjoyed this wonderful dinner outside on the porch.  J

·          This is a recipe from my Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook.  The carrots are really nice and soft, with just the slightest brown sugar flavor.  Yum!  Another plus, they are ridiculously easy to make.

Saturday:  Slow Cooker Flank Steak, Rice, Roasted Zucchini & Squash

·          My mom & I went to see “Wicked” down in Dallas, so this was a great slow cooker solution so that dinner wouldn’t be too tough to throw together after I arrived home.  Chad actually put it in for me.  I’ve made this a few times, and I think the lower and slower you can cook it, the better.  Also, cuts like flank steak and skirt steak can be a bit tougher anyway, so that can make a difference too.  Still, the flavor is nice, and the steak is great with rice, in tacos, or even on sandwiches.

Roasted Zucchini
·          Zucchini is a great veggie to roast when you want dinner quickly.  We sliced ours very thin, then sprinkled it with olive oil, Season All, pepper, & a little Parmesan.  It will roast in a 400 degree oven in 10 minutes or less.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

March 31 - April 6, 2013

This week’s meal planning was a little sporadic.  Before the week started, Chad wasn’t sure what nights he would be home for dinner, so my shopping trip was less planned than usual.  But, with 3 kids, I also can’t just run to the grocery store every day.  So, I bought basics – chicken, ground beef, broccoli, green beans, asparagus – and knew I could make dinner happen on whatever nights we needed it.

Sunday:  Lunch – Crockpot Pineapple & Brown Sugar Ham

·          We hosted Easter at our house this year, so I made a large ham while everyone else took care of the side dishes and dessert.  This is a delicious and simple way to make a ham.  I’ve seen this recipe in several different locations, including the Crockin’ Girls.  Using the crockpot keeps the ham moist, and of course the brown sugar and pineapple keep it tasty!  We had the ham for again for dinner that evening.

Monday:  Dinner with Mom

·          Chad wasn’t home for dinner on this evening, so the kids and I met my mom for dinner.  Yay for living close to Nonnie!

Tuesday:  Sauteed Chicken & Roasted Asparagus with Spinach Ravioli & Pesto

·          This was a dinner that was decided on and made somewhat last minute.  As I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t even sure what nights I would be cooking a full dinner, but having staples on hand made this meal easy and yummy.  I like this meal too because everything is all together in one bowl. 

Sauteed Chicken & Roasted Asparagus with Spinach Ravioli & Pesto
-          2 large chicken breasts, cut up into bite-sized pieces
-          Seasonings for chicken
-          Trimmed asparagus
-          Spinach ravioli (mine was from Sprouts)
-          1-2 Tbsp. Pesto
-          Freshly-grated Parmesan

Roast the asparagus on a foil-lined baking sheet with olive oil, salt, & pepper at 450 degrees for 15-18 minutes.  Sautee the chicken in olive oil & your choice of seasonings.  I used Accent, garlic salt, pepper, & Italian seasoning.  Meanwhile, prepare pasta according to package directions.  When asparagus is roasted, cut into bite-size pieces and toss with your chicken.  Add 1-2 Tbsp. pesto, depending on your own preference.  Place pasta in your bowls and top with chicken & asparagus.  Finish it off with a little fresh-grated Parmesan cheese!  Yummy!  I served ours with some whole wheat garlic bread.

Wednesday:  Bacon, Egg, & Cheese Breakfast Tacos

·          Chad wasn’t home for dinner this evening, so I needed a quick and easy meal for the boys and me.  Breakfast comes to the rescue again! 

Thursday:  Papa Murphy’s Pizza

·          After a tiring day and a little dental work, I had no desire to cook.  Chad quickly picked up the vibe and grabbed a Papa Murphy’s pizza for dinner.  I pretty much have the best husband.

Friday:  Grilled Steak & Shrimp, Roasted Green Beans, & Macaroni & Cheese

·          The boys stayed with my mom for the night, so after Payton went to sleep, Chad & I had an at-home date night!  It was wonderful.  Really, we decided it was almost better than going out.  We didn’t have to deal with a crowd or an expensive restaurant, the food was delicious, and we had a nice, quiet conversation.  Chad took the lead on this meal, marinating and grilling the steak and shrimp and also buying some delicious mac-n-cheese from our Market Street grocery store.  Seriously…it was SO good.  I roasted some green beans, and we were both stuffed!

Saturday:  Beef Soft Tacos, Rice, & Roasted Broccoli

·          I browned some ground beef, drained it, then I added some homemade taco seasoning I had made up several weeks before (recipe from One Good Thing By Jillee).  I also had some black beans in the fridge and threw those in with the beef.  We prefer corn tortillas, so I steamed some in the microwave by wrapping them in a damp paper towel and microwaving for about 30 seconds or so.  I made the boys quesadillas, which are MUCH less messy for them! 

Add all the fixings to your tacos, as well as sides of rice and roasted broccoli, and you have a filing and delicious meal for everyone!