About This Blog

I enjoy new recipes...especially those that are easy. I always look for two things in the ingredients - a short(er) list and ones that I normally have on hand anyway. So if you are looking for something new to serve...look here!

I can't promise that the recipes will all be easy or healthy, but I do promise to try to add a new one every now and then that I have already tried myself.

Visit my personal blog at www.take10withtricia.com.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Cut-Outs Icing

1/2 cup butter softened
3 cups confectioner's 10x powdered sugar
3 tablespoons of milk
1 teaspoon of vanilla
food coloring

Cream butter. Add remaining ingredients and continue creaming until mixture is well blended and light and fluffy.

Split into bowls and add food coloring.

Will cover about 70-90 cut-outs depending on the shapes.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas Cut-Outs

1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar

4 eggs
3 tsp water
1 tsp vanilla

6 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp nutmeg

You will need 3 bowls. In the largest bowl, cream butter well. Then add white sugar and brown sugar slowly to the butter and cream well. I usually do this one in the mixer.

In the second bowl, beat eggs and add water and vanilla.

In the third bowl, mix and sift the remaining dry ingredients.

Add alternately the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients to the creamed butter and sugar.

At the end you will have to use your hands to shape the dough into a large ball. Chill dough at least 1 hour before rolling it out.

Roll on floured surface and cut with cookie cutters.

Bake about 7-8 minutes on 350.

Cool and icing. See Cut-Out Icing for recipe.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Meltaway Cookies

1 cup soft butter
1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cup sifted flour
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 400. Mix thoroughly: butter, powdered sugar and vanilla. Sift flour and salt and then stir into first mixture. Roll into tsp size balls and drop onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake about 8-12 minutes until set but not too brown. While still warm, roll them in more powdered sugar!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Glazed Toffee Bonbons

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 bars (1.4 oz each) chocolate-covered English toffee candy finely chopped (I used Heath bars)

1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons milk
1 1/3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/3 cup white vanilla baking chips

Heat oven to 325 degrees. In large bowl, beat 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup brown sugar, the vanilla and egg with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. On low speed, beat in four, baking soda and salt. Reserve 1/3 of the chopped candy for garnish. Stir remaining chopped candy into dough. Shape dough into 1 inch balls. On ungreased cookie sheets, place balls 1 inch apart.

Bake 11 to 14 minutes or until edges start to brown and tops of cookies feel set when tapped. Place cooling racks on waxed paper. Immediately remove cookies from cookie sheets to cooling racks.

Meanwhile in 1-quart saucepan, heat 1/4 cup butter, 1/2 cup brown sugar and 2 tablespoons of milk over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until mixture just comes to a boil and sugar is dissolved. Stir in powdered sugar; beat with wire whisk if necessary to remove lumps. Immediately dip tops of cookies into glaze, or spread glaze on tops of cookies. (Cookies don't need to be completely cooled, just firm and set.) Place on rack; let stand about 10 minutes until glaze is set. If glaze starts to set in saucepan, reheat over medium-low heat and beat with whisk until softened.

Place chocolate chips and vanilla chips in separate small microwavable bowls. Microwave each on High 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth. Using tip of spoon, drizzle each flavor generously over cookies. Sprinkle with remaining candy. Refrigerate 20 minutes to set quickly.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Caramel Pecan Pretzels

40 tree- and star-shaped pretzels (I substituted Snyder's Snaps Pretzels)
20 caramels, unwrapped, each cut in half horizontally into 2 thin squares
40 pecan halves
½ cup dark chocolate chips
½ cup white chocolate chips

Heat oven to 250. On a large cookie sheet, place pretzels in a single layer. Place caramel piece on center of each pretzel. Bake 6 to 8 minutes or until caramels have softened. Remove from oven. Press pecan half into each caramel piece. Place close together on sheet of waxed paper.
In separate 1-quart resealable freezer plastic bags, place chocolate chips and vanilla chips; seal bags. Microwave each on High 35 to 50 seconds, until chips are melted and smooth.
Cut small tip from bottom corner of each bag. Drizzle melted chocolate over pretzels. Carefully drizzle melted vanilla chips over chocolate. (If careful when drizzling, there is no need to let the chocolate set before drizzling the vanilla chips.) Refrigerate about 20 minutes or until chocolate is set.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Bacon Crisps

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan (found in deli section of Kroger)
1 sleeve buttery rectangular crackers (I use Keebler Club crackers)
1 pound sliced bacon, cut in 1/2

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place 1 teaspoon of the cheese on each cracker and wrap tightly with a strip of bacon. Place the wrapped crackers on a broiler rack on a baking sheet and put the baking sheets on the oven rack. 

Bake for 40 minutes, or until the bacon is done. Do not turn. Drain on paper towels. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Easy Potato Soup

Rinse 4 cans of diced potatoes and put on the stove in a pot. Cover with 1 1/2 cans of chicken broth and boil for at least 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a crock pot, heat the following ingredients until blended together:
1 can cheddar soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup

Add potatoes and chicken broth mixture to the soup mixture in the crock pot. Add 1 pint of half and half and stir together. Keep on low heat. Stir occasionally so that the soup does not stick.

Serve with bacon bits and cheddar cheese.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Chicken Salad

1 12.5 oz. can chicken (rinsed, drained & shredded)
1/2 white onion, finely chopped
Sweet relish or finely chopped gerkin pickles
Miracle whip (at least 1/2 cup)

Mix all of the above. Add chopped pecans or walnuts. Add cut grapes. Add more miracle whip if necessary. Add pepper to taste. Serve with crackers or on bread/rolls.

For a large crowd, I use 3 cans of chicken and 1 onion. Then I just increase the rest of the ingredients as necessary.

I use Hormel premium chicken in water, Miracle Whip light, sweet relish, pecans and red grapes.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Toffee Crusted Baked Chicken


1 egg (beaten)
1/2 cup syrup
1/2 tsp. cajun seasoning

1 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/4 chopped heath bar

Dip chicken breasts into egg mixture and then into bread crumb mixture. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

I only did this with one large chicken breast. I used 1 egg, 1/4 cup syrup and 1/4 tsp. cajun seasoning. I used 1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs and 1 whole heath bar (no pecans). We had it with steamed carrots and mashed potatoes. It turned out really yummy! THANKS Kimberly!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Toffee Apple Dip

This one is definitely a fall favorite and guaranteed to be a hit at any gathering.  A friend brought this to my house a few years ago for a fall picnic and she couldn't keep the apples cut fast enough! 

1 - 8 oz package cream cheese, softened (1/3 less fat works fine)
1 - 8oz package toffee bits (I love the Heath ones)
3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional, but I use it)

Stir together all ingredients until well blended. It may seem a bit lumpy or not working at first.  But just. keep. stirring.  Trust me.  It will begin to come together just fine.

Serve immediately with apple slices or store in an airtight container in refrigerator up to 5 days. 

You can smash up 4 Heath bars for the toffee bits.

If you are taking this somewhere, don't cut the apples until you get there.  Better yet, bring along a small cutting board and apple slicer that you can keep right there with the dip.  Slice a few at a time to keep the apples from browning.  If you are like me, any tiny bit of lemon juice may help the browning, but just kills all flavor...bleh!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Breakfast Sausage and Egg Casserole

Baking dish - medium Pyrex

- Cook about half a pound of sausage (or more) in a frying pan, set aside

- Use 5 - 7 slices of white bread, the crust removed, place in the dish

- Add a layer of cheese ( I prefer sharp cheddar) on top

- Add the sausage in a layer

- Add a mixture of six eggs and a cup of milk

- Lightly salt and pepper

- Add another layer of cheese

- Let it sit in the refrigerator overnight, take it out 20 minutes before baking

- Bake uncovered at 350 for 50 minutes

I have also used cooked ham on one half and sausage on the other.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Layer after Layer Lemon Pie

This is a great spring/Easter dessert. I think I got it out of the Kraft Foods Magazine.

1/3 cup strawberry jam
1 prepared graham cracker crust (9-inch)
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 tbsp. sugar
2 tubs (8 oz. each) cool whip
1 ½ cups cold milk
2 packages (4-serving size each) Jell-O Lemon flavor instant pudding

Spread jam on bottom of crust.

Mix cream cheese and sugar in bowl with wire whisk until smooth. Gently stir ½ tub of cool whip into cream cheese mixture.

Spread over jam.

Pour milk into large bowl. Add pudding mixes; beat with wire whisk 1 minute or until blended. Gently stir in remaining ½ tub cool whip.

Spread over cream cheese layer.

Refrigerate 4 hours or until set. Top with cool whip.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Pumpkin Bread

This is from my friend Amy. Her recipe is awesome!

Also, this recipe makes a LOT - 24 big muffins or 4 loaves in 7-1/2x3-1/2 inch pans. It's great to stock up the freezer.

1 cup softened butter
3 cups sugar
3 eggs
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 (16 oz.) can pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup raisins (optional)
1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well. Combine dry ingredients. Add alternately with pumpkin to the creamed mixture. Stir in vanilla, raisins and pecans. Pour into lined muffin tins or greased and floured bread pans. Bake at 350 degrees (about 25 minutes for muffins, about 45 minutes for breads).

Friday, September 4, 2009

Perfect Hard-Boiled Eggs

So many people have trouble with this one that I just had to share the "recipe" I use. Andy has a cookbook called "Dad's Own Cook Book". I highly recommend it. Search for it on Amazon.

Place cold eggs in a saucepan or pot and cover with cold water. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Simmer for 12 minutes. Plunge the eggs immediately into cold water to stop the cooking process and to make them easy to peel.

I even put the eggs immediately under a cold faucet and add ice over them. Perfect eggs every time!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Crock Pot Ham

No real recipe for this one. This is NOT the good southern way. This is quick and easy. Cut up potatoes and put in bottom of crock pot. Place already cooked boneless ham on top. Pour 2 cans of green bean juice over top (save green beans until later). Heat until potatoes are soft and ham is hot. Time will vary depending on size of ham. If ham is pre-sliced, it will overcook and get crispy...beware!! Dump green beans from the can on top close to serving time (if you add them too early, they will turn to mush). Leave until warmed. YUMMY.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Crock Pot Chili

Andy's Recipe:

2 lbs. ground beef
2 16-oz cans chili beans – undrained
2 14.5-oz cans chili style diced tomatoes – undrained
2 jalapeno peppers
1 large white onion - diced
2 cloves of garlic (or more/less to taste)
Cayenne pepper to taste
Chili powder to taste
½ cup water, for thinner chili
Carroll Shelby’s Chili Mix (in chili aisle in a brown box)
You may not need the mix if you have the following ingredients it contains:
· Packet masa flour (add only to thicken if necessary)
· Packet salt
· Packet cayenne pepper (Andy uses entire packet plus some more!)
· Packet of spices (ground chili peppers, masa flour, cumin, oregano, garlic, onion, paprika, and salt)

Brown the ground beef with the diced onion, garlic, chili powder, and one diced jalapeno pepper. Put ½ beef mixture in the crock-pot. Pour in one can of the chili beans and one can of tomatoes on top of mixture in crock-pot. Stir. Add the packet of spices from the Chili Mix and stir. Add rest of the beef mixture and cans of beans and tomatoes. Add salt, other jalapeno (sliced), and cayenne pepper to taste and stir. Cook all day on low. Add masa flour at end of day to thicken the chili if necessary, or add water for thinner chili. Serve with crackers, cheese, and sour cream.

Optional - Add macaroni for last hour. For hotter chili, use habanero peppers or more cayenne.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Turkey Peppercorn Ranch Bites

Another one from Kraftfoods!

Go to Kraftfoods.com and search the above name if this link doesn't work:


Sunday, August 30, 2009

Banana Pie

2 bananas
1 oz package vanilla fat-free instant pudding
1¾ cup skim milk
1 Keebler reduced-fat graham cracker crust
1 8 oz container of fat-free Cool Whip

Slice 1 banana and lay slices on the bottom of crust. Beat pudding and milk and pour over bananas. Slice other banana and lay slices on top of pudding. Refrigerate until firm. Top with Cool Whip and serve.

1/8 pie = 3 WW points

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Spaghetti Sauce

Jude’s Spaghetti Sauce

1 lb. beef
1 jar spaghetti sauce
14 oz. can of diced tomatoes
Packet of spaghetti seasoning
1 can water
1 tbsp. brown sugar
Diced onion
Italian seasoning

Brown beef with the onion. Add remaining ingredients and simmer. Freeze leftovers.

Friday, August 28, 2009


Not so easy...but everyone needs a great lasagna recipe:

Lasagna from Jude
Serves 8+

Step One:
In deep skillet or saucepot, sauté onion in olive oil for 5 minutes. Add meat, brown, and drain, if necessary. Add following sauce ingredients and simmer for 1 hour:
1 lb. pork sausage
1 lb. beef
1 medium onion
1 26 oz. chunky Prego
1 small can of mushrooms
1 tsp. oregano
2 tsp. parsley
2 tbsp. brown sugar

Step Two:
Prepare 9-12 lasagna noodles per box, but do not overcook. Rinse.

Step Three:
In a mixing bowl, combine the following filling ingredients:
¾ cup Parmesan cheese
8 oz. Ricotta cheese
16 oz. small curd cottage cheese
3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 eggs
Optional – 6 slices Swiss cheese in the middle layer

Step Four:
In 13x9 baking dish layer the meat sauce, noodles, and filling three times. Reserve some meat sauce for the top. Bake in the oven on 350 for 1 hour. Before last ten minutes of baking, sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Meatballs and/or Meatloaf

Mix in a large bowl:
3 lbs. fresh ground beef
1 ½ cup soft bread crumbs
3 eggs
6 tbsp. minced onion
3 gloves garlic, crushed
1 ½ tsp. salt
1 ½ tsp. pepper

Shape into 1 ½ inch meatballs. Arrange on a cookie sheet and freeze until meatballs are set. Store in a ziplock baggie in the freezer until ready to use. Microwave the meatballs to defrost and then bake in the oven or in the sauce. Recipe also works for a couple of meatloaves.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Baked French Toast

4 English muffins

3 eggs
3 tbsp melted butter
½ cup sugar
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 2/3 cup half and half or whole milk

1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp lemon juice

Fruit Dip:
8 oz cream cheese
Small container of marshmallow fluff
1 tbsp vanilla syrup – different than vanilla extract
Red food coloring optional to make dip pink

Spray pie dish with non-stick spray. Cut up 4 English muffins into small squares. Put in pie dish. Mix other ingredients together in a separate bowl with a whisk. Pour over the English muffins and be sure that the muffin pieces are coated with the mixture. Push down into mixture to fully coat if necessary. Sprinkle top with nutmeg. At this point you can cover and put in fridge until next morning or put into oven immediately. Bake 45 minutes at 350. Let sit 10-15 minutes. Mix topping ingredients together. Whip fruit dip ingredients in mixer. Top slice of baked French toast with the topping mixture and a dab of fruit dip or just use maple syrup.

I must confess that I've never made the topping or fruit dip, but the baked french toast is YUMMY with just syrup and powdered sugar. And it's great for when you have overnight guests since you can make it the night before.

Thanks Jill!!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Oreo Chocolate Truffles

Prep Time 1:30
Yield: 42

1 – Package of Oreos, Divided
1 – Package of Cream Cheese
2 – 8 oz Packages of Bakers Chocolate

Set aside 9 Oreos for later. These can be crushed to use as a topping once the whole process is complete.

Crush the remaining Oreos into a fine powder. (Food Processor is easiest)

In a large mixing bowl, combine the Oreo Powder and the Cream Cheese until completely blended and smooth.

Roll mixture into 1” balls and put on cookie sheet(s) covered with parchment paper (Should be around 42).

Place cookie sheet(s) in fridge to chill for 1 hour.

Melt Bakers chocolate using directions on package.

Dip each ball into Bakers chocolate and place back on parchment paper. Now is the time to decorate if you would like using remaining Oreos or topping of your choice.

Let chill for 1 more hour (or until chocolate is hard) before serving.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Chicken Cordon Bleu

Serves 2-4

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 slices Swiss cheese
2 slices cooked ham
½ cup seasoned bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 7x11 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

Pound chicken breasts to ¼ inch thickness.

Sprinkle each piece of chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Place 1 cheese slice and ham slice on top of each breast. Roll up each breast, and secure with a toothpick. Place in baking dish, and sprinkle chicken evenly with bread crumbs.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink. Remove from oven, and place ½ cheese slice on top of each breast. Return to oven for 3 to 5 minutes, or until cheese has melted. Remove toothpicks, and serve immediately.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Angel Food Cherry Cheese Fluff

For 8 x 8 pan, cream together in a mixer:
4 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Then add to that and mix again briefly:
6 oz Cool Whip

Then remove bowl from mixer and add 1/2 angel food cake (cut in small pieces) and stir together coating the cake. Spread mixture on bottom of pan. Top with 1 can cherry pie filling and refrigerate for at least a few hours. Double the recipe for 9 x 13 dish.

Thanks to Laurie for this one!! A summer favorite.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Veggie Pizza

An old favorite...

Take 2 large cans of Pillsbury crescent dinner rolls and spread dough on large cookie sheet to make one flat crust. Bake as directed and let cool.

Mix together:
1 – 8 oz. cream cheese (I use 1/2 less fat)
¾ cup mayo (I use Miracle Whip lite)
1 packet of Hidden Valley dip mix

Spread mixture on crust.

Sprinkle with 3 large carrots, ½ bunch broccoli, and ½ bunch cauliflower.  I buy the bagged pack of these near the bagged salad - the shredded carrots and the broc/cauliflower mix.  It makes the perfect amount.

Top with 8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese:

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Little Smokies

1 cup Bull's-Eye Original Barbecue Sauce
3/4 cup apricot preserves
1 pkg. (16 oz.) Little Smokies

Mix barbecue sauce and apricot preserves in crock pot on low. Add smokies.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Peanut Butter Pie

Mix 8 oz cool whip with 4 oz cream cheese
Add 1/3 cup peanut butter (I always add a little extra)
Add ½ tsp vanilla
Gradually add 1 ¼ cup powdered sugar
Gradually add ½ cup milk

Once mixed, pour into a 9 oz graham cracker crust and freeze. Decorate with ready whip and chocolate syrup before serving.

Thanks Julie S.!!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Cherry Cobbler

- 1 can cherry pie filling (Thank You is a good brand if available)
- 1 stick butter
- 9 oz box Jiffy yellow cake mix

Cut butter into cake mix with a pastry blender or your fingers until crumbly. Pour cherries into a greased pan and sprinkle cake mix over top. Follow cake mix baking directions.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Festive Bean Spread

1 (16 ounce) can refried beans
1 cup salsa
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 pint sour cream
1 (1.25 ounce) package taco seasoning mix
1 bunch green onions, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese

First (bottom) layer: mix together beans, salsa, cumin, and garlic powder, and spread on large, flat serving dish as a thin layer, maybe 1/2 inch thick.

Second (middle) layer: mix together sour cream and taco seasoning, and spread over bean layer.

Third (top) layer: sprinkle the cheese on first, then top with chopped tomatoes and green onions.

Cover with plastic wrap, and chill for about an hour. Serve cold with tortilla chips.

The two cheeses can be substituted with one 3-cup package shredded taco cheese.

From allrecipes.com

Friday, August 14, 2009

Baked Beans

4 cans baked beans
½ cup brown sugar
2 tbsp. ketchup
1 tbsp. mustard

Mix ingredients in a greased dish and cover with bacon. Bake on 350 for 1 hour.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Taco Dip

1- 8oz block of cream cheese
1- 16oz tub of sour cream
1- packet of taco seasoning
Shredded cheese – Mexican blend is good

Mix sour cream and cream cheese together until smooth. Mix in the whole packet of taco seasoning. Spread out into a dish. Sprinkle shredded cheese over the top. Serve with tortilla chips.

You can also fold the shredded cheese into the mixture and put it in a bowl.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Cocktail Meatballs

1-2 bags of original Armor meatballs (not Italian)
1 bottle of chili sauce (about 10 oz)
1 small grape jelly (8-10 oz)

Heat chili sauce and grape jelly so that grape jelly melts - whisk occasionally. (Throw it together in the microwave or a sauce pan.) Put meatballs in crock-pot on low and pour sauce over top.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup

I'm a big fan of Chicken Noodle Soup...especially during the fall and winter months.  I'm an even bigger fan of homemade soup.  And easy homemade just makes me jump for joy.

So when I came across this recipe that my MIL shared, I was thrilled.  It's Sandra Lee's Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup. It's easy and it's delicious.

1 store-bought roasted chicken (I usually select the "Herb" flavor)
1 cup diced onions (I don't use frozen for this)
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced carrot
4 (14-ounce) cans low-sodium chicken broth
2 (10.75-ounce) cans condensed cream of mushroom soup with roasted garlic (I can rarely find the "with garlic", but plain cream of mushroom works fine...I use the "healthier" version)
2 teaspoon fines herbs*
Salt and pepper
2 cups egg noodles, cooked (I used wheat)

Remove the skin from the chicken and shred the meat from the bone. Put the chicken into a slow cooker along with the onions, celery, and carrots. Stir in broth, mushroom soup, and fines herbs and season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook on high setting for 3 to 4 hours or low for 8 to 9 hours.

When soup is finished, stir in cooked egg noodles. Adjust seasonings and serve.

Don't put the noodles in too early or they will overcook and disintegrate over time.  I have found that it freezes ok...noodles get mushy.  ENJOY!

*Sandra Lee's Note: Fines herbs are a classic blend of herbs that usually consists of chervil, chives, parsley, and tarragon. Fines Herbs can be found pre-blended in the spice section of the grocery store.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Potato Casserole

2 lbs. frozen hashbrowns
¾ cup melted margarine or butter
½ cup chopped onion
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
1 can cream of chicken or mushroom soup
1 pint sour cream
2 cups grated mild cheddar cheese
2 cups bread crumbs

Defrost potatoes. In large bowl, combine the potatoes, ½ cup melted margarine, salt, pepper, onions, soup, sour cream, and cheese. Place in greased 9x13 pan. Mix bread crumbs with 3 tbsp. melted butter. Sprinkle over mixture. Bake uncovered at 350 for one hour.

Thanks Julie!!!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Banana Milkshake

2 scoops vanilla ice cream
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large bananas

Place two scoops ice cream into blender. Add milk and vanilla. Break bananas into 3 or 4 pieces and add to the blender. Cover and blend at high speed till smooth. Pour into tall glasses and serve.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Miniature Pizzas

One can of biscuits
Chili sauce
Mozzarella Cheese
Other preferred toppings

Roll biscuits flat into small circles
Mix eqal parts chili sauce and ketchup for sauce
Spread sauce on biscuits; sprinkle with oregano
Top with cheese
Bake on cookie sheet

I have not done this recipe since I was in grade school. We used to make these with my grandma all the time!!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Chicken Chili

2-3 Chicken breasts or 2 large can of Hormel Chunk Chicken drained, rinsed, and shredded
4 – 15 ½ oz cans Great Northern Beans (Bush’s)
16 oz salsa (Tostitos medium)
2 C Colby/Monterey Jack or Mexican blend shredded cheese (Kraft)
1 packet McCormick’s White Chicken Chili seasoning mix
Chicken broth (optional – I don’t use)

For chicken breasts do steps 1 and 2; otherwise proceed to #3

1. Boil 2-3 Chicken breasts in a stock pot of water for 20-25 minutes until fully cooked
2. Pull out chicken and dump the water
3. Leave pot on the stove, but turn stove down to simmer
4. Add 4 cans of beans (undrained), salsa, and seasoning packet to the pot; stir together
5. Shred the chicken with a fork (rinse first if canned) and add to the pot; stir together
6. Cover the pot, but keep it on low and stir constantly so it won’t stick
7. 30 minutes before serving – add 1/3 of the cheese every 10 minutes to the middle of the pot and fold into the mixture and let it melt (if you add it all at once or not on the center, it is more likely to stick to the side and/or burn)
8. If chili is too thick, add chicken broth

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Tater-Topped Casserole

From Kraft Foods: http://www.kraftfoods.com/kf/recipes/tater-topped-casserole-111257.aspx

1 lb. ground beef
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 can (10-3/4 oz.) condensed cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup milk
1 cup frozen mixed vegetables
1 cup KRAFT Shredded Cheddar Cheese
1 lb. (1/2 of 32-oz. pkg.) frozen bite-size seasoned potato nuggets

HEAT oven to 375ºF. Brown meat with onions in large skillet, stirring occasionally; drain. Spoon into 2-qt. casserole dish. MIX soup and milk; pour over meat mixture. Top with layers of vegetables, cheese and potatoes. BAKE 45 min. or until potatoes are golden brown and casserole is heated through.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Squares

Sinful, but DELICIOUS!

2 – 8 oz. crescent rolls
2 – 8 oz. cream cheese
1 ½ cups sugar, divided
1 tsp. vanilla
¼ cup butter or margarine
1 tsp. cinnamon

Unroll 1 can of crescent rolls and place in a slightly greased 9x13 baking dish. Seal seams and set aside. In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, 1 cup sugar and vanilla until smooth. Spread over dough. Unroll remaining crescent rolls and place over cream cheese mixture, stretching to cover. Brush melted butter evenly over the top. Sprinkle with cinnamon and remaining sugar. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until done. Cool and cut into squares.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Cincinnati Skyline Chili Party Dip

One 8oz package cream cheese
¼ cup diced onions (optional)
One 13 oz frozen or 15 oz canned Skyline Chili
Shredded cheddar cheese

Spread cream cheese evenly on bottom of 8x8 casserole dish. Sprinkle on diced onions. Pour heated Skyline Chili over onions and cream cheese. Cover with shredded cheddar cheese. If you want your cheese melted you can heat in microwave for 2 minutes or in oven (350) for 10 minutes. Serve with nacho chips or corn chips.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Beer Cheese

2 – 1 lb. loaves of round rye bread

Mix in blender:
1 – 8 oz. Cheez Whiz
2 – 5 oz. jars of Kraft Old English cheese spread
1 stick of butter
1 – 8 oz. sour cream
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
¼ can beer

Cut center of one rye round, pour dip in, and slice rest of rye bread into chunks for dipping.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Seasoned Roasted Vegetables

Spray oil
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
½ tsp poultry seasoning

Wash and cut vegetables into bite-sized pieces. Put vegetables on a pizza stone or in a greased pan. Spray with butter or oil. Mix spices and sprinkle over vegetables. Bake on 425 for 25 minutes.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Marshmallow Salad

1 bag miniature marshmallows
1 jar maraschino cherry halves
1 - 15 oz can of pineapple chunks
2 - 11 oz cans of mandarin oranges
1 - 16 oz container of sour cream (I use Breakstone’s reduced fat)

Drain all of the fruit. Combine all ingredients into a large bowl until the fruit and marshmallows are evenly coated with sour cream. Refrigerate a few hours before serving. You can also add a can of fruit cocktail or coconut.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Baked Pizza Dip

8 oz Cream Cheese
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
2 cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese, divided
½ cup pizza or spaghetti sauce (Boboli pizza sauce packets work well)
Wheat thins or other crackers

Beat cream cheese and Italian seasoning until well blended (this can be done in a bowl with just a spoon if the cream cheese is softened). Spread onto bottom of 9-inch pie plate. Top with layers of 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese and pizza or spaghetti sauce; sprinkle with remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 for 15 to 20 minutes or until mixture is thoroughly heated and cheese is melted. Serve with crackers. Makes 3 cups.

Baked Pepperoni Pizza Dip: Prepare as directed, topping with 1/3 cup finely chopped pepperoni before baking.  Mine was for the Super Bowl...so supposed to look somewhat like a football on top!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Southwestern Cheesy Chicken Skillet

Not exactly the healthiest...but a family favorite, nonetheless!!!!!!

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Makes 6 – 1 cup servings

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into bite-sized pieces
2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked
½ lb (8 oz.) Velveeta Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product, cut up
1 can (10 oz.) Rotel Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies, undrained
½ cup sour cream
2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley (optional)

1. Cook chicken in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat for 5 to 7 minutes or until cooked through, stirring occasionally.
2. Stir in 2 cups water. Bring to boil. Stir in macaroni, cover. Reduce heat to medium. Simmer 10-15 minutes or until water is almost absorbed.
3. Add Velveeta and tomatoes. Cook until Velveeta is melted, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; stir in sour cream. Sprinkle with parsley.
4. Rotel will make it spicy, substitute can of diced Italian seasoned tomatoes for less spice.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Pasta Salad

One box tricolor pasta
One cucumber
One container grape or cherry tomatoes
One family size bottle of Kraft Fat Free Zesty Italian Dressing
McCormick’s Salad Supreme seasoning – this is in the spice aisle

Cook the pasta. Cut cumber and tomatoes into bite-size pieces. Toss together while adding ¾ of the bottle of salad dressing. Sprinkle with salad supreme spice and toss again. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to allow dressing to soak in – you can refrigerate overnight. Immediately before serving toss again with the ¼ of salad dressing that is remaining.

You can also add onions, black olives, mozzarella cheese, etc. depending on your preference. Salad supreme spice can be left out if you can’t find it.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Apple Pancake

2 large cooking apples (I used Golden Delicious)
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ cup butter, melted
¼ cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup sugar
Pancake batter (for 12-16 pancakes)

Heat the oven to 375. In a 9-10” skillet, sauté apples in butter over medium heat until tender. Remove skillet from heat and sprinkle with nuts. Pour pancake batter over apples and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Bake 15 minutes or until pancake is puffed and sugar is melted. If oven proof skillet is not available, bake in a 9-10” pie plate. Smother with syrup and enjoy!

This is an old favorite from a trip Andy & I took to Hocking Hills pre-marriage. We had this at the Bed and Breakfast.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Oven-fried Turkey Cutlets

1 pound turkey breast cutlets
3 tablespoons water
3/4 cup dry bread crumbs
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons crushed dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Spray a shallow baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
3. Place turkey cutlets in a medium bowl. Cover with water.
4. In a shallow bowl combine bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, oregano, poultry seasoning, salt, pepper and garlic powder; mix well.
5. One at a time, take cutlets and dip into crumb mixture, turning to coat both sides of cutlets.
6. Place in prepared pan. Spray each cutlet lightly and evenly with cooking spray.
7. Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes, or until lightly browned and done. Serve hot.

Makes 4 servings. For two servings either cut the seasoning ingredients in half OR make the seasoning and immediately put half in a zip-lock bag in the freezer for future use.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cheeseball

Cream together:
8 oz softened cream cheese
½ cup softened butter (not melted and real butter is best)
¼ tsp vanilla

Gradually add:
¾ cup powdered sugar
2 tbsp brown sugar

Mix in:
¾ cup mini semi-sweet choc chips

Roll or form into a ball and chill one hour or until firm. Sometimes I can't get it into a ball and I just serve it in a bowl. Serve with chocolate graham crackers!

Sauté ¾ cup finely chopped pecans in a bit of butter and sugar, blot in paper towel. Roll ball in pecans.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Taco Soup


1 lb. Lean ground beef
½ onion, chopped
1 small can green chilis, undrained
1 can each of pinto, kidney and black beans, undrained
1 can chopped stewed tomatoes, undrained, (you may have to chop them yourself)
1 can Rotel, undrained
1 can kernel corn, undrained
1 pkg. Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing mix (dry)
1 pkg. Taco seasoning mix
1 ½ cups water

Brown 1 lb. of the lean ground beef. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for at least 20 minutes. Optional - serve with some shredded cheese and oyster crackers.

Makes about 12 cups. Great to freeze and reheat!

3 points per cup (Weight Watchers)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Crock Pot Roast

1 fairly lean pot roast (I go to Kroger and buy whatever meat has the Crock-pot/Pot Roast sticker on it!)
1 pack Lipton’s onion soup mix (these come in a box near the canned soup)
1 onion, thinly sliced (Or I use 1/3 - 1/2 bag frozen pearl onions - yummy)
Carrots (I just buy a 1 lb. bag of the mini carrots at Kroger)
Potatoes (either 2-3 Idaho cut into 4 pieces or a bunch of red whole)

Place the carrots and potatoes and pearl onions in the bottom, so they will absorb the juices. If using a whole onion, place half the onion in the bottom of the crock pot. Rub the (raw) roast with the soup mix (I don't brown it on the stove). Place roast in crock pot, and top with remaining onion. Cover and cook on low heat for at least 8-10 hours. If it's going to cook for 10-12 hours...add a bit of water in the morning - 1/2 cup or so. Otherwise, it will make enough of its own juices.

Then I just follow the directions on the side of the Bisquick box (I buy the Heart Smart version) for the dumplings. They are not your typical "wet" dumplings...but I still love them.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I've gotten a ton of salsa recipes this summer. Here is what I've been using from all the recipes:

1 can black beans (washed and drained)
1 can corn (washed and drained)
2 avocados (bite size pieces)
Onions- white, green, red or combo
Tomato (I use 3-4 Roma)
Chopped cilantro (optional)
Can also add a dash of cumin, salt, or garlic powder

1 lime - squeeze all the juice over the salsa at the end and stir!!! Very yummy with the hint of lime tortilla chips.

Big thanks to Betsy and Victoria!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Chicken Parmesan Strips

Makes 4 servings

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into strips
½ cup skim milk
1/3 cup dry bread crumbs
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon dried parsley
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
Marinara sauce for dipping

Place the chicken in a shallow bowl and cover with the milk. Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes or up to 4 hours.

Preheat the oven to 375. Coat a baking sheet with non-stick spray.

In a shallow bowl, combine the bread crumbs, Parmesan, parsley and pepper. Dip the chicken into the crumb mixture to coat well. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Coat each piece of chicken with no-stick spray (use olive oil spray for the most flavor).

Bake for 20 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink in the center when tested with a sharp knife.

*I have also made this with 1-2 chicken breasts. You can mix the bread crumbs, Parmesan, parsley and pepper and keep it in a ziploc in the freezer. Then you can pull it out and just use some of it if you don't want to make 4 servings. I just sprinkle it on top of the chicken, flip it on the baking sheet and repeat so I'm not dipping it (that way you can keep the leftover spices). I've also skipped the part about soaking it in milk.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Old English Dip

8 oz. cream cheese
1 jar Old English Sharp cheese – can be found by the Velveeta in the store

Let sit at room temperature to easily blend together or blend in mixer. Serve with cut-up veggies, bagels, or crackers (Wheat Thins are a good choice).

Add green onion and serve with cut-up Everything Bagels for a variation.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Cheesy Ham Pie

This is a yummy quick recipe that can be for breakfast or dinner.

1 cup cottage cheese
1 – 3 oz. cream cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup cooked chopped broccoli
2 eggs
1 cup chopped ham

1 cup bisquick
¼ cup milk
2 eggs

Mix 6 top ingredients together. Mix bottom three ingredients together. Put 2/3 of bottom mixture in a greased pie pan. Put top mixture on top. Put rest of bottom mixture on top. 

Bake at 375 for 35-40 minutes. Take out and let stand 5 minutes.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Cream Cheese Appetizer

One can reduced fat Pillsbury Crescent rolls
8 oz 1/3 less fat Cream Cheese
Garlic Salt

Take half of the crescent rolls and roll them out on a cookie sheet. Then you cover that with dill and garlic salt. Put a brick of cream cheese on that and cover with more dill and garlic salt. Cover that with the crescent rolls that are remaining and roll up the sides to seal. Bake on 350 until a little brown on the top! Serve with crackers. We use reduced fat Wheat Thins.

You can now use the Pillsbury recipe creations rolls that don't have the seams for the crescent rolls.

Debi - Another one of yours that EVERYONE loves!!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Beef Taco Bake

This is one recipe that my kids will actually eat. 
They've even thanked me for the great dinner afterwards!

1lb lean ground beef
1 low sodium taco seasoning packet
cayenne pepper (optional)
1 can (10 3/4oz) Campbells Healthy Request Condensed Tomato Soup
1 can black beans drained or undrained
1 cup of your favorite salsa
1/2 cup skim milk
4-6 of your favorite flour tortillas (cut into 1"pieces)
1 cup shredded mexican blend cheese
Reduced fat sour cream

1. Brown meat and pour off fat in a large pan (can do this the day before)
2. Add soup, beans, taco packet, cayenne pepper, salsa, milk, tortillas and 1/2 the cheese
3. Mix and spoon into casserole dish
4. Cover and bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until hot
5. Sprinkle remainder of cheese over top
6. Serve with sour cream

Thanks Debi! We still keep this in our rotation.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Pumpkin Pudding

One small packet of Jell-O Instant Vanilla Pudding
2 cups skim milk
1 cup canned Libby’s 100% Pure Pumpkin
¼ tsp pumpkin pie spice

Mix all ingredients together and refrigerate in 6 serving dishes. Top with 1 tbsp of Cool Whip before serving. Tastes just like Pumpkin Pie.

(2 WW points per serving)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Superfood’s Sweet Potato Oven Fries for Two

Enough sprigs of fresh rosemary to cover a baking sheet (optional)
½ tsp chili powder
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp paprika
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
2 small/medium sweet potatoes, scrubbed and blotted dry

The spices can be doubled to 1 tsp for larger serving of 3-4 potatoes or halved for 1 potato. Spice can be mixed ahead of time and kept in pantry in sealed container.

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a large baking sheet with olive oil spray.

2. Spread rosemary sprigs on the baking sheet in a single layer, making sure that the entire surface is covered.

3. In a small bowl, mix together the chili powder, cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper.

4. Cut ends off of the potatoes. Leave skin on. Cut potatoes into ½ inch thick circles.

5. Lay the potatoes on the rosemary sprigs in a single layer and sprinkle generously with the seasoning mixture. Spray generously with olive oil spray.

6. Bake for 20 minutes, remove from the oven, and spray again with olive oil spray.I don't always use the rosemary and I often just bake them on our pizza stone. I only put salt/pepper on a couple of them for the kids because they are SPICY.

7. Return to oven for about 25 minutes, or until the fries are golden and puffed. Brush off the rosemary sprigs and serve warm. (Dipping in ketchup is good also!)

I often skip the rosemary if I don't have any on hand and just bake them on our pizza stone.  I also leave a few "naked" for the kids...because these can be SPICY!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Yummy Chicken Dish for the Grill


1-2 Chicken Breasts
Kraft Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette Salad Dressing
Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
1-2 Roma Tomatoes

Marinate the chicken breast(s) in the sun dried tomato vinaigrette for a couple of hours (we did ours overnight). Grill the chicken. While the chicken is cooking, mix some more vinaigrette in a bowl with some shredded mozzarella cheese and diced tomatoes. Remove chicken from the grill onto a large piece of foil. Top chicken with mixture. Fold foil up over the chicken creating a "tent" so that the cheese won't stick to the top of the foil. Place foil package back on grill long enough to melt the cheese but not too long as to overcook the chicken. Unwrap and YUMMY! Thanks Betsy!!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Spicy Snack

Mix half of each and enjoy:

Snyder's Jalapeno pretzels pieces

Extremely spicy snack that is great with a COLD beer!! Thanks Ginger & Fred!