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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Menu Plan 5/28

Well I was finally able to get out in the front yard with Silas today, even though it's already ungodly hot! I had been regularly weeding, but I was pushing off pruning the shrub at the end of our driveway. It's so pretty, but it has thorns all over! I'm happy to report I put on my big girl pants and completed the job, with only minor scrapes. :) Project curb appeal is under way!

I've tried to plan easier meals this week to give us more time in the yard. Hopefully the weather will cooperate as well!

Dinner - Cookout at Mom & Dad's

Dessert - Blueberry Donut Muffins & Cherry Crumb Pie

Homemade Mushroom Soup

Grilled Hotdogs and Baked Beans

Taco Mac Casserole, served with tortilla chips (freeze half)

YOYO (you're on your own!)

Breakfast - Strawberry Orange Julius

Dinner - Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken (freeze leftovers)

Breakfast - Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal The packets. I know they're super processed, but I love them. :)

Dinner - Crockpot Ranch Pork Chops & Potatoes (carry over)

Linking up to: Menu Plan Monday and Menu Monday.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Chocolate Mint Chip Pudding Cookies

I had a bag of mint chocolate chips in my pantry for a while. I LOVE mint chocolate anything, it's definitely one of my favorite ice cream flavors. I actually scored big time because I found this particular bag at our local grocery outlet for $.79! I finally came up with this cookie idea and they turned out SO GOOD. They are one of the most addicting cookies I've ever had! I'm now wishing I had bought more than just the one bag...

Chocolate Mint Chip Pudding Cookies

2 sticks butter, softened
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 package (3.4oz) instant chocolate pudding mix
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 package chocolate mint chips

Cream butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar in a stand mixer. Add in dry chocolate pudding mix until well blended. Add vanilla and eggs one at a time beating well with each addition. In a large mixing bowl, sift together flour and baking soda.

Gradually add flour mixture a little at a time until well blended. Stir in chips. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets and bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes (10 was perfect for my electric oven). Cool on wire racks.

Linking up to: Ingredient SpotlightTastetastic Thursday, It's a Keeper Thursday, Thrifty Thursday, Somewhat Simple, Frugal Food Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Timeout Thursday, Things I've Done Thursday, My Favorite Finds, Feature Friday, Flaunt It Friday, Feature Friday, Foodie Friday, Simply Link Party, Refresh Your Nest, Friday Favorites, Tidy Mom.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Ham & Cheese Biscuit Muffins

I am really loving the freezer cooking thing. It makes dinner time so easy!! One of my favorite blogs for freezer recipe gems is Once A Month Mom. You simply have to check it out! This was something I pinned to try for a simple lunch. Well when Paul came home later that night, he had to try one because he thought it smelled so good. I have since frozen two batches and they reheat wonderfully, too. Certainly not a complicated recipe, but tastes great.

Ham & Cheese Biscuit Muffins
from Once A Month Mom

1 can Grands rolls
3/4 cup shredded monterey jack cheese, divided
8oz deli ham, chopped
bacon ranch dressing (for dipping, use regular ranch if you can't find bacon ranch)

Separate biscuits and cut into 6 equal pieces. Toss them in a bowl along with 1/2 cup shredded cheese and chopped deli ham. Mix with your hands to make sure everything is incorporated. Spray muffin tin with nonstick spray and divide biscuit mixture evenly among cups. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup cheese over each biscuit. Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes.

Serve with bacon ranch dressing to dip. If freezing, cool completely and place biscuits in a freezer bag. When ready to eat, heat muffin from frozen (no need to thaw) for 45 seconds in the microwave. Enjoy!

Linking up to: Must Try Monday, Mangia Monday, Melt In Your Mouth Monday, Makin' You Crave Monday, Recipe Sharing Monday, Cure for the Common Monday, The Gunny Sack, Mop it Up Monday, Totally Tasty Tuesday, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday, Tuesday Confessional, T Time, Too Cute Tuesday, Tuesday Timeout, Show Me What Ya Got, Trick or Treat Tuesday,

Menu Plan Monday 5/21

Last week was a bit exciting for us. Wesley started walking and is officially sleeping through the night! The only thing is, he's been in a horrible mood because of his 8th tooth coming in. Yes you read that right. He's 9 months old. UGH. The only thing I'm hoping is that after we deal with this teething episode, we should be done for a while. I hope!

Sorry about the photo bomb, but it's moments like these that I need to be reminded of how cute he is. LOL!

Anyhow, this week as far as our menu is concerned, is turning out to be a slow cooker week! Good thing I stocked up on slow cooker liners a few weeks ago when they were on sale. Here's the plan:

Slow Cooker Pasta E Fagioli Soup (carry over)

Poppin' Ranch Chicken Pot Pie

Grilled Bacon Cheeseburgers and Oven Roasted Corn on the Cob ($.25 this week at Target!)

Source: food.com via Kelly on Pinterest

Slow Cooker Tamale Pie

YOYO (you're on your own!)

Breakfast- Banana Bread Pancakes

Dinner- Broccoli & Cheddar Twice Baked Potatoes (from freezer, carry over)

Breakfast- leftover Banana Bread Pancakes

Dinner- Crockpot Ranch Pork Chops & Potatoes


I also promised Silas I'd make him some Homemade Icees:

Doesn't that look SO good?! I have to agree with him, I want one, too. :)

Linking up to: Menu Plan Monday and Menu Monday.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Improv Cooking Challenge: Strawberries & Cream French Toast Bake

This month's Improv Cooking Challenge was so fun! Strawberries and cream (of some kind) immediately sounded yummy to me. I knew I wanted to try these ingredients in a new breakfast dish and this one was a total winner! We enjoyed this for Mother's Day breakfast and I loved it. I could easily see changing up the fruit to whatever is in season!

Strawberries & Cream French Toast Bake
from What's Cooking Love

1 can refrigerated cinnamon rolls with cream cheese icing
1 cup strawberries, smashed with a fork
3 eggs
1/4 cup heaving whipping cream
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla

Open and separate cinnamon rolls, cut into 8 equal triangles. Place cinnamon roll pieces into a greased 9x9 baking dish. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, whipping cream, cinnamon, and vanilla. Stir in strawberries. Pour egg mixture over cinnamon rolls in dish. Bake at 375 for 25-30 minutes or until eggs are set and rolls are golden. Microwave cream cheese icing for about 20 seconds and drizzle over french toast. Serve warm!

Once again, a big thanks goes out to Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker for hosting our awesome challenge!!

Linking up to: Link and Greet, Check Me Out Saturday, Strut Your Stuff Saturday, Saturday Spotlight, Show & Tell Saturday, Sweet Saturday, Weekend Showoff Party, Whatcha Got Weekend, Sweets for a Saturday, Weekend Wrap Up Party.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Crockpot Chicken Taco Soup

This is a classic dump-and-set slow cooker recipe that will taste good every time. Doesn't get any easier than that, folks! This batch made a lot for the three of us and I actually put about half in a gallon ziploc bag and froze. This soup is on the thicker side so feel free to serve it with some salsa and tortilla chips for dipping. I had some leftover Grands biscuits and we all thought they went super yummy together, too. I could go for a hot bowl right now!

Chicken Taco Soup
adapted from Shugary Sweets

2 large chicken breasts
1 packet taco seasoning
1 can mexicorn, drained (or regular corn)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
16 oz jar picante sauce
32oz chicken stock
6oz tomato paste
4oz cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream

Place chicken on the bottom of greased slow cooker and sprinkle with taco seasoning. Dump corn, black beans, picante sauce, chicken stock, and tomato paste on top and stir to combine. Cook on high for 3 hours. Shred chicken with fork and add cream cheese and sour cream. Give the cream cheese a few minutes to melt and stir to incorporate all ingredients. Serve with some shredded cheese on top.

Linking up to: Show and Tell, The Mommy Club, Show Off Your Stuff, This Chick Cooks, Cast Party Wednesday, Wow Me Wednesday, Sugar and Spice, Wednesday's Wowsers, Link it up Wednesday, Tastetastic Thursday, It's a Keeper Thursday, Thrifty Thursday, Somewhat Simple, Frugal Food Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Timeout Thursday, Things I've Done Thursday, Strut Your Stuff, Link and Greet.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Poppin' Ranch Chicken Pot Pie

I'm on a freezer cooking kick right now. I'm obsessed with recipes that I can make for dinner and then freeze half of it for another week. Seriously, I've been a pinning fool! Usually I like to try a recipe first before making it a freezer recipe, just to be sure we like it. Didn't need to do that here. I knew the minute I saw this one, it would be a hit around here. I was absolutely right! Make it in a 9x13 pan for your larger family, or do what I did and split it between two smaller baking dishes and freeze one for later. Easy, filling, and yummy!

Poppin' Ranch Chicken Pot Pie
from Picky Palate

3-4 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
1 packet ranch dressing mix, divided
2 10oz cans cream of chicken soup
10oz can cheddar cheese soup
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup milk
15oz can corn, drained
15oz can sliced carrots, drained
1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar, divided
1 can Grands biscuits
1 teaspoon garlic salt
salt & pepper

Mix together soups, chicken broth, and milk in a large bowl until well combined. Stir in shredded chicken, ranch seasoning (reserve 1/2 tsp for topping), salt and pepper. Spread chicken mixture into a 9x13 pan, or two smaller baking dishes if freezing. Sprinkle 1 cup shredded cheddar over chicken. Cut Grands biscuits into 8 small triangles and place biscuits over cheddar in dish. Top biscuits with reserved ranch seasoning, garlic salt, and remaining 1/2 cup cheddar. Bake at 350 for 40 minutes or until biscuits are cooked through (check a few in the center to make sure they're done). You may need to put foil over dish towards the last 10 minutes of cooking to prevent over-browning.

Freezer directions: Prepare dish as directed above before baking. Cover tightly with foil and freeze. When ready to eat, thaw completely and bake at 350 for 40-50 minutes or until biscuits are done.

Linking up to: Must Try Monday, Mangia Monday, Melt In Your Mouth Monday, Makin' You Crave Monday, Recipe Sharing Monday, Cure for the Common Monday, The Gunny Sack, Mop it Up Monday, Totally Tasty Tuesday, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday, Tuesday Confessional, T Time, Too Cute Tuesday, Tuesday Timeout, Show Me What Ya Got, Trick or Treat Tuesday, Strut Your Stuff, Link and Greet

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Menu Plan Monday 5/14

Well, after celebrating my sister's grad school graduation on Saturday and having a wonderful Mother's day with my family on Sunday, I'm ready to take it easy this week! On the plus side, there are MULTIPLE great deals this week at my local grocery stores. I'm planning on using up a few freezer meals in order to free up the rest of the grocery budget to stock up. Here's my plan:

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore (carry over)

Oven Tacos

Mozzarella Stuffed Mushrooms (from my Gooseberry Patch Comfort & Joy cookbook)


Baked Ziti (recipe coming!)

YOYO (you're on your own)

Breakfast- Copycat IHOP Pancakes

Dinner- Broccoli & Cheddar Twice Baked Potatoes


Breakfast- Leftover IHOP Pancakes

Dinner- Slow Cooker Pasta e Fagioli Soup

Linking up to: Menu Plan Monday and Menu Monday.


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