Archive for February 2016

Chicken Bacon Club Salad

February 23, 2016
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Tyson Foods, Inc. and Pinnacle Foods Group LLC. All opinions and text are entirely my own.

Filled with grilled chicken strips, bacon, egg, and croutons, this salad is an amazing one-bowl meal!

Lately, I have been a complete salad fiend. Don't get me wrong - I love my casseroles and ground beef skillet dinners. And of course you all KNOW how obsessive I am with the slow cooker. I bring that baby out at least twice each week!

I just love how quick and easy it is to throw a salad together when you're stomach starts grumbling. I usually alternate between cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, and chopped broccoli and cauliflower. Avocados have been cheap around here recently, so I love adding that in as well. My main staple though?

Definitely grilled chicken strips!

It takes a normal boring salad, to restaurant quality status in literally minutes. And then if I'm super ambitious and hard boil some eggs, OH MAN - now that's a salad! It's fun to try and recreate a favorite sandwich or not-so-good-for-you meal into a salad version, and that's exactly what I did with this Chicken Bacon Club Salad.

One of my all-time favorite sandwiches to make at home is grilled chicken with mayo, bacon, lettuce, and tomato on a hard Italian roll. Sometimes I'll stick it under the broiler for a few minutes so the roll gets crispy on the edges.

This salad version of that awesome sandwich incorporates the same flavors in an easy one-bowl meal! Chicken, real bacon pieces, Romaine lettuce mix, sliced hard-boiled egg, crispy Italian croutons, and drizzled Wish-Bone® Italian Dressing. You simply have to try this amazing salad!

Chicken Bacon Club Salad

  • 2 cups Tyson® Grilled & Ready® Chicken Strips
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup real bacon pieces
  • 1 cup Italian seasoned croutons
  • 5 cups Romaine lettuce blend
  • 1/2 cup Wish-Bone® Italian Salad Dressing
Cooking Directions
  1. Prepare chicken strips according to package directions. Place lettuce in a large serving bowl and add the rest of the ingredients, drizzling the dressing over top. Serve immediately.

I can't wait to have leftovers of this amazing salad for lunch tomorrow, yum!

Tyson® Grilled & Ready® Chicken is one of my favorite recipe shortcuts to pick up at Walmart. In a few minutes I have a delicious and healthy protein that's simple and convenient to make. And of course Wish-Bone® Italian Dressing just tops the salad off with robust flavor, packed full of herbs and seasonings, with no high-fructose corn syrup. A truly "mostly homemade" meal for your family!

What's your favorite one-bowl salad idea? Let me know in the comment section!
Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Tyson Foods, Inc. and Pinnacle Foods Group LLC. All opinions are entirely my own.

20+ Whole Dinners in the Crockpot

February 22, 2016

I don't know about you, but I feel super proud of myself when I have enough of my wits about me in the morning to put together a dinner in the slow cooker. It's like there's extra caffeine in my coffee on mornings like those! Something I DON'T like dealing with though, are side dishes. I'm the queen of "set it and forget it" cooking. Actually, I'm obsessed with recipes that actually have the ENTIRE dinner ready altogether in the Crockpot. One less thing to stress out about when everyone in the family is hungry and in a bad mood. Or, as my husband likes to describe it, HANGRY! 

Here are more than 20 dinners that require ZERO extra ingredients, or effort, when it comes to dinner time!

Crockpot Cheesy Chicken Tater Tot Casserole

Crockpot Thanksgiving Dinner

Crockpot No Cook Manicotti

Slow Cooker Italian Pot Roast

Don't miss another Mostly Homemade Mom recipe! Click here to have recipes delivered by email. Or, you can follow along via Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, or Google+ - I'd love to connect with you!

Crockpot Chili Dogs

February 18, 2016
*This post contains affiliate links*

In less than 10 minutes, you'll have saucy chili dogs simmering in the slow cooker ready when you're family is hungry! This is a great recipe for parties, too!

If you have kids, hot dogs are a staple in the house. The boys pretty much think it's Christmas when I announce that they're having hot dogs for dinner. What that really means is Mommy royally screwed up dinner that night, or Mommy had literally no plan for dinner that night. They are none the wiser, ha!

Personally, my favorite way to enjoy hot dogs is on our George Foreman grill. It's really simple, cleanup is easy (I have the one where the plates are removable and you can just plop them in the dishwasher), and the flavor is WAY better than the dreaded microwave. Thankfully, the boys could care less how I make them!

Ever since I started making those Pinterest-famous Loaded Oven Chili Dogs, we've been enjoying them more and more. I decided to tweak the recipe a bit to cook in the Crockpot and I have to say, these turned out fabulous! We kept the toppings on these dogs simple with just some extra shredded cheese, but you can certainly set out chopped onions, relish, and mustard if you're having a party - I definitely would!

Crockpot Chili Dogs

  • 2 lbs hot dogs
  • 3 (10.5 oz) cans hot dog chili sauce
  • 15 oz can pork & beans
  • 1/2 cup prepared cheese queso dip
  • 16 hot dog rolls
  • Optional toppings: chopped onions, mustard, relish
Cooking Directions
  1. Place hot dogs in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  2. In a separate bowl, stir together chili sauce and pork & beans. Spread over hot dogs.
  3. Cook on low for two hours, then set to keep warm. Serve with rolls and optional toppings.

While this recipe definitely makes enough for a crowd, I put the extra dogs into a resealable container and kept in the fridge. The boys loved having leftover chili dogs for lunches the following week! You could easily halve the recipe and only include one can of chili sauce and one pound of hot dogs for just your family - it's totally up to you!

Here are some more of my favorite comfort food Crockpot recipes:

Don't miss another Mostly Homemade Mom recipe! Click here to have recipes delivered by email. Or, you can follow along via Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, or Google+ - I'd love to connect with you!

Pineapple Mango Banana Bread

February 15, 2016

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Sunsweet Growers for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

This simple banana bread uses baking mix and sweet, dried pineapple and mango - perfectly moist and delicious!

Oh, these dreary days of winter. The summer heat and beautiful colors seem so long away from now! I look out my window and, while the snow falling is peaceful and pretty, I look at the plants and grass (that I can see) and it's all dead and gray. While I'm not a fan of super hot days, I honestly am starting to prefer those to these days where it's so cold I don't want to go out and do anything!

One way I like to counteract this winter cabin fever is to cook and bake colorful, bright foods for us to enjoy. And also to grab some great, fruity tropical dried fruit to snack on through the day and to incorporate in my recipes. A bit of spring or summer in the middle of winter, right here in my kitchen. It's a beautiful thing!

This tropical banana bread does just that - transport you to warmer memories in an instant! Yummy, moist bananas combined with sweet dried pineapple and tangy dried mango. If you're looking for a new, sweet, tropical recipe - this is it! Sunsweet's Philippine Pineapple and Mango are the perfect additions to banana bread - you have to try this version. My boys couldn't get enough of it!

Pineapple Mango Banana Bread
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 bananas, mashed
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups baking mix
  • 1/2 cup dried pineapple, chopped fine
  • 1/2 cup dried mango, chopped fine
Cooking Directions
  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese and sugar.
  2. Add in bananas, beating well. Add in eggs, beating well.
  3. Stir in baking mix until well moistened. Gently stir in pineapple and mango.
  4. Spread evenly into two greased loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.
  5. Cool, slice, and serve.

I just love how yummy a slice of this banana bread is along with a hot cup of coffee in the morning!

Sunsweet's dried fruit is absolutely perfect in this bread:Philippine Mango and Philippine Pineapple - and you absolutely have to try their two newest flavors: Philippine Green Mango and Thai Coconut Chip. These delicious fruits are sourced from unique microclimates with ideal growing conditions to produce a succulent and sweet snack!

Sunsweet has an AWESOME sweepstakes going on: the Sunsweet Find Your Paradise Sweepstakes! You can enter by picking your favorite tropical destination between Hawaii, Caribbean Cruise, or Florida. The winner will be selected randomly and there are additional weekly opportunities to win beach gear and a gift basket with these great new Sunsweet flavors! Enter through the site link above or through Sunsweet's Facebook and Pandora social channels as well.

What new Sunsweet flavor are you most excited to try? Let me know in the comment section below!
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Oven Chicken Fajitas

February 11, 2016
Chicken strips, tomatoes, green chiles, and peppers baked with seasonings. The BEST chicken fajitas you can make at home!


Please tell me I'm not the only one going stir crazy over here?! I'm very thankful for this little house God has blessed us with. But this winter, now with 5 of us, stuck in the house ALL DAY LONG because it's so cold... I feel claustrophobic! Believe me, the boys have plenty to do here in the house. We have approximately one million Thomas Trackmaster tracks, double that number in Legos. Plus Play-Doh, Hot Wheels, Lincoln Logs, books, books, and more books. And there's their tablets with ABC Mouse, YouTube praise songs playlist (Silas had me add any Owl City music video I could find to that list as well), Cut the Rope, 40 different Angry Birds Games, plus Minecraft and Terraria on the computer.

You'd think they'd be occupied enough to not get themselves into trouble. HA!

They're little boys and they need chances to run around and blow off steam. I made a very wise investment in good quality snow pants, snow boots, and gloves so I can kick them out the back door when they're particularly itchy. I wish the cold didn't bother me or else I'd be out there with them!

Oh man, this dinner makes me think of spring. I think it's the bright colors! If you have some pepper and onion haters in your life like I do, this is a great dinner because you can easily avoid the large strips when making their particular fajitas, but the chicken retains the amazing flavor of those vegetables anyway. Plus, you guys know how much I love recreating meals at home - this one, I would say, is way better than ordering tacos or fajitas through the drive thru - trust me!

Oven Chicken Fajitas

  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 yellow pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1/2 medium onion, sliced into rings
  • 10 oz can diced tomatoes and green chilies
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 8 flour tortillas
  • Optional toppings: avocado, sour cream, shredded cheese
Cooking Directions
  1. Place chicken, pepper strips, and onions into the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish. Add diced tomatoes over vegetables.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil and taco seasoning. Spread/drizzle over everything in dish.
  3. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring half way through. Allow to cool slightly before serving on tortillas with desired toppings.

Here's a tip when cutting the chicken into strips: use a sharp non-serrated knife! I learned this a few years ago and it really cuts raw chicken much easier. 

Here are some more of my favorite Mexican-inspired dinners: