BBQ Turkey Meatloaf (with a twist!)

My sister sent me this recipe a couple of months ago and I was a little skeptical because of what was in it, but I decided to give it a try anyway…

Anthony took the first bite and his reaction was so fast that it startled me. Then he kept saying how good it was between every bite. hahaha. His reaction to a good recipe kills me every time. He’s been through some pretty epic kitchen fails with me so when I find something that I can’t mess up and he loves, it turns into a regular dish around here! Just ask him about the parmesan chicken I made him once in Hawaii – it was so disgusting but he still forced himself to eat the whole thing. #marriage

Anyway, if you like BBQ sauce, meat, and cheese you will love this recipe. Promise. There is even a sweet potato added in there for added nutrients 😉

What you will need:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 small sweet potato, shredded (about 3/4 cup shredded sweet potato)
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey (94%)
  • 1 small white onion, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup italian style panko breadcrumbs (or use gluten free breadcrumbs)
  • 2 tablespoons low sugar bbq sauce (I like Stubb’s)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (if you like heat)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 oz sliced sharp cheddar cheese (or ½ cup shredded cheddar)
  • For the topping:
  • 1/3 cup low sugar bbq sauce
  • Optional: Cilantro, for garnish

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Throw all the spices, egg, some bbq sauce, breadcrumbs, and garlic in a bowl (if you are using onion that goes in too! I just didn’t have an onion on hand tonight)

 

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Let your shredded sweet potato simmer on medium/low heat for 6 minutes or so.
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Then add the meat and sweet potato to the bowl of spices and mix all together. I use me hands because it is easiest, even thought raw meat kind of grosses me out.
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Then on a lined baking sheet make a rectangle with a little less than half of the meat mixture.
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Add cheese! Be sure to leave some space around the edges.
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Add the rest of the meat to the top and be sure to seal the edges so you don’t lose all the cheese as it cooks. 
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Spread some BBQ sauce on top and pop it in the oven at 375 for an hour.

I had never made meatloaf before this because it wasn’t really something I loved eating. I didn’t realize just how easy it is to make though! If you want full, detailed instructions on how to make this, you can find them here! Also, I forgot to get a picture of the finished product because we were too excited to dig in. But that’s ok because taking pictures of meat (and making it look tasty) is actually not my strong point. If you couldn’t tell. haha.

I would love to hear if you try this and what you thought, so be sure to leave a comment. Also, what are some of your favorite dinner recipes? I am always looking for quick, tasty, recipes to try, so please share!

The tastiest enchiladas

Ok, so I’m obsessed with this enchilada recipe. It’s pretty basic but because of that you can do SO much with it! I’ve made it with plain chicken, smoked chicken, lots of different cheeses, and it’s delicious every time.
It’s originally a recipe from Real Simple that my sister sent me with her own modifications and I never even made the original one because I loved her version so much! I’ll stop talking (or writing I guess) now and share what you are really here for…


Ingredients you will need:

2 pounds of chicken breasts (approx 2-3 chicken breasts)

1  16 oz jar of mild salsa verde

1 cup of sour cream (we use Greek yogurt – you can’t tell the difference at all)

1 1/2 cups of frozen or canned corn

1 can of black beans

1/2 lb of Muenster or Monteray Jack (2 cups grated)

Salt & pepper 

6 inch tortillas

Optional: 2 cups of fresh cilantro 
Cooking directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Place chicken in a pot and add just enough water to cover, bring  to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 15-20 min (or if you already have chicken cooked you can use that! Like I said, you can do a lot with this recipe so chicken cooked differently is a-ok). Once the chicken is cooked let it cool off and shred it.

If you are using cilantro, you will want to throw the salsa, cilantro, and 1/2 cup of sour cream or Greek yogurt into a blender or food processor and purée it until it’s all well mixed. If you don’t use cilantro you can just mix the Greek yogurt/sour cream and salsa in a bowl. Once the sauce is all mixed up, transfer it to a sauce pan and simmer until slightly thickened (10-12 min). Then add the remaining 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt/sour cream and remove from heat.

In the same bowl you mixed your sauce, or a new one if you prefer, mix the corn, beans, 1 cup of cheese, and 1/2 cup of sauce with your shredded chicken. 

Spread approx 1 cup of sauce in a 9×13 baking dish. Roll up your enchiladas (it’s about 1/2 a cup of the filling in each tortilla) and place them in the baking dish seam side down. Top them with the remaining sauce and cheese.

Bake until bubbling and beginning to brown, about 15-20 min. 

And viola! Get ready to feast!

This is the best photo I could get after they came out of the oven..couldn’t even wait to take a picture, we had to dig in right away!

I hope you all enjoy these enchiladas as much as we do, and if you try them out let me know what you think and what (if any) changes you made to the recipe!

Tastes from Hawaii

While we lived in Hawaii, I came to love curry.

Ok, well not all curry, really just one curry in particular….Thai pineapple curry.

I am not kidding when I say that I was/am obsessed with it. I could only find it at one restaurant on the North Shore, so that’s where I chose to go for date night at least once a month while we were on that island! When we moved, I never really thought about how difficult it would be to find something (anything!) similar.

Well, I soon discovered it was pretty much impossible, so I gave up trying. I told myself a million times that I would just find recipes online and try them until I found one somewhat close. So, here we are, almost 3 years after moving off Oahu, and I finally found a recipe!!!!

Confession: it’s actually the only recipe I’ve tried but since it was so good, I don’t have to find and try 15 more to get it right! Woohooo!!

This is the recipe I based mine off of, but I took some things out, added others and this is what I got:

2 chicken breasts
1 cup of fresh pineapple (I used canned pineapple chunks)
1/2 cup of bamboo shoots
2 Tbs red curry paste (store bought)
1 Tbs of grated ginger (I got tired of grating it so I was a little short of 1 Tbs)
2 garlic cloves
1.5 Tbs of fish sauce
1/2 cup of chicken broth
1 cup of coconut milk
1 Tbs of coconut oil
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
Fresh basil or cilantro to garnish (I hate cilantro, but I think basil is a better choice anyway!)
Optional: 1 Tbs of corn flour for thicker curry

****If you use fresh pineapple instead of canned, add 1 tsp of sugar

1. Cut chicken in to bite size pieces and in a large pan (I don’t own a wok, but if you do, use it!) cook chicken with coconut oil.
2. Add ginger and garlic to the pan and cook for a few minutes. Then add curry paste and stir to combine with the chicken.
*****At this point, I dumped the chicken, garlic, ginger, and curry paste mixture into a pre-heated pot because my pan was not big enough to hold all the liquids I would be adding.
3. Add chicken broth, sugar (if using fresh pineapple), turmeric, bamboo shoots, and fish sauce. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
4. Add coconut milk and stir, then add pineapple. Cook for another 5-8 minutes.
5. To thicken your curry, you can mix 1 Tbs of corn flour with 3 Tbs of cold water and add the mixture at the end. Let it simmer for a few minutes until it thickens. It will be most noticeable when the curry cools down a little.
6. Enjoy!!

I love my curry over rice, Anthony loves his with rice noodles. I haven’t quite mastered the rice noodle curry thing yet, so when I do I’ll let you know.

Oh, also, we both didn’t love the bamboo shoots, so I think I will ditch those next time.

If you try this recipe, or the original, let me know what you think!

Mix it, Leave it, Eat it!

Well, I feel like I post a lot about food…but let’s be honest, who doesn’t love food?! I’m back with a delicious, easy, husband approved breakfast for you. I have seen the “overnight oatmeal” floating around for awhile but hadn’t gotten around to trying it so when I was at Target last weekend I bought a dozen mason jars and decided this oatmeal concoction was going to be a thing at our house!

and man, am I glad it’s become a thing.

So here’s how it works:

1/2 cup of oatmeal
1/2 cup (sometimes a little more) of milk (we use almond over here since we have some lactose intolerance in the house)
1-3 spoonfuls of greek yogurt (only in mine-see above)
1 tablespoon of honey
and 1 tablespoon of chia seeds

Then you mix it all together in a bowl, mason jar, cup, WHATEVER you want and stick it in the fridge so it sits overnight.

Yup, it’s that easy.

Oh, and in the morning you throw some fresh fruit or whatever toppings you would like on top and take it to go or eat it right then and there! I really need to try peanut butter/banana and cinnamon/apple next…..

Seriously, you can do anything with these. It’s awesome.

 

(this morning I did strawberries and mango, yesterday was strawberries and blueberries…)
BONUS! Anyone who hates slimy chia seeds like me, don’t fret! You can’t even tell they are slimy or even in there for that matter! #win
Like always, tell me how you like them if you decide to give it a shot or what you like in them if you are already on the overnight oatmeal bandwagon!

When you need a little extra fiber….

Try these.

This recipe has become one of my favorites. I found it while searching for easy and healthy meals I could make during the week because one of the biggest struggles for me while working full time has been finding time to fit everything in, including meals that we could take for lunch or eat for dinner. But not just any meals. They had to be easy and healthy…which I always thought was a non existent combination. Well, turns out it’s not impossible and there are some really good options out there!

When I first went to make this particular recipe I was a little skeptical….but I gave it a try and it obviously tasted great or else I wouldn’t be sharing it here! The actual recipe is vegetarian but you can add chicken and its still just as tasty!! We have had it both ways and love it either way. (Although, I do think Anthony prefers the chicken version because he’s a man and has to have his meat…)
I highly recommend these to everyone and I will be surprised if you try them and don’t like them. That’s how good they are….and bonus: I am usually good to go after eating three because they are filling (and good for you!!) so there are always leftovers.
Oh and before I forget, DON’T FORGET TO MAKE THE SAUCE TOO!!! It’s a greek yogurt/avocado/lime dream combo. Seriously. It is so good.

Please go try these and tell me what you think…..I need to know if you guys get as obsessed as I am…

Photo from I Heart Naptime

Mango Tango

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE mangos. I’m pretty sure I’ve loved them for a very long time and I’m not really sure how anyone could NOT love them. But hey, whatever floats your boat.

I actually can’t look at mangos or eat one anymore without thinking about a particular story and since I hate when people bring stuff up and then don’t share, I’ll share the story with you 😉 cuz I’m nice like that.

Ok- so my family was in Cabo one summer, and I think we were driving home from probably the most depressing zoo of my life, when we saw a guy with big paper bags FULL of mangos for sale. My dad asked if anyone wanted to stop and buy some and of course my little mango loving self in the back seat shouted “YES!!” (Note: I’m not the only one who loves mangos, I’m pretty sure it’s genetic and everyone in my family got the dominant mango loving gene) So we took a massive bag (of already RIPE mangos) back to our hotel and immediately started devouring them. I don’t think my little heart could have been happier! Now, let’s fast forward two days…surprise, surprise, we were all sick from eating so many mangos. And I mean sick…think 3 grams of fiber per mango….. it was a rough day or two after that binge and we still had at least half of the mangos left!!! That’s how big that dang bag was. It literally felt like a never ending supply of mangos. Which would have made me happy, if I  hadn’t just missed a day of swimming to sit on the toilet…. I believe we ended up giving or throwing away the remaining fruit since no one could handle any more mangos after that. Hahaha.

After that trip I was afraid the whole experience was going to make me never want to touch a mango again. But, surprisingly, I still loved them. I just learned to pace myself 😉

So now you all know what I think about when I eat or see mangos and hopefully you think about something a little more pleasant. I can laugh about the story now, but man, I’m not sure my body has ever hated me more than during that mango cleanse!!

 

Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia!

Ok, so I used to be the worlds pickiest eater. Don’t believe me, just as my poor mother. I still am a bit picky but mostly when it comes to the texture of food. I can’t do slimy. Unless I want to throw up, which I don’t. Ever.

I feel like all of my siblings are pretty adventurous when it comes to food, and I am still over here figuring that out. Oh well, some of us take longer, right? 😉

Anyway, we went to Costco yesterday and decided to buy some chia seeds (along with the rest of our groceries obviously) so we could give them another chance. **Disclaimer: The only experience I have ever had with chia seeds was one of those Mama Chia (or whatever they are called) drinks and lets just say, it was slimy…. SO I was a little nervous today when I pulled them out to see how I could incorporate them into one of my meals/snacks. Long story short, I figured it out and do not regret my decision to buy them at all. Especially after reading about all the benefits of eating those little seeds! Lets just say, they are small, but are PACKED with goodness. A quick google search can give you all the information you’ve ever wanted about chia seeds.

I know you are all dying to know how I ate them, right? So here ya go:

1-1 1/2 cups of greek yogurt (plain is best- less sugar and easier to add any flavor too!)
A handful (or more!) of blueberries
1- 1 1/12 tablespoons of chia seeds
Honey to drizzle on top

I feel stupid for typing this out, but honestly, I am the kind of person that likes to see exactly how much of each ingredient I need to put in or else I end up messing it up. (I can’t do the whole “I just threw this, this, and a little of that all together and Ta-Da!”) So there you go, its a fast, easy, healthy snack with a nice portion of protein (22 g!), antioxidants, and fiber!!

***I know I am probably late to the game on this little snack and most of you already know how to eat chia seeds, but this was so good (and I was pleasantly surprised) I had to share anyway!!***

 

The best orange chicken I’ve ever had!

So last weekend we had a stay at home date. I decided to try out an orange chicken recipe that our friend Andrea made while she was here. She got the recipe from pinterest, so to pinterest I went! I found it and somehow convinced Anthony that it would be fun to make it together… So that’s what we did! We stayed home, made orange chicken together, ate that orange chicken, walked to the local ice cream shop, and then went down to the beach for a little walk. It was one of the best dates ever and we hardly spent any money! I’m pretty sure it was because of the awesome company I had all night 😉 So back to that orange chicken….Seriously, not to toot my own horn (because all I did was follow a recipe), but that was THE BEST orange chicken I have ever had. So much better than Panda Express or any other takeout I have ever had. Even my food critic of a husband (I mean that in the most loving way) said it was the best orange chicken he has ever had! That is success if you ask me! So anyway, I posted a picture of it on my Instagram and got a few people asking for the recipe. So here it is:

Ingredients

Chicken Breading:
3-5 chicken breast
salt and pepper
1 cup cornstarch
2 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup canola oil

Rinse chicken, trim off fat or extras and then cut into 1 inch cubes. season with salt and pepper. Dip chicken into cornstarch and coat all the way and then into eggs. Heat oil in large skillet. Cook chicken until browned. Place in baking dish. 3 chicken breasts can be in a 9×9 but 5 chicken breasts fits better in a 9×13.

*I didn’t use salt and pepper to season I just did it plain and it still turned out delicious

Sauce:
3/4 cups sugar
4 Tablespoons ketchup
1/2 cup white distilled vinegar
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon garlic salt

Whisk until smooth. Then pour evenly over chicken. Turn chicken so the sauce gets on both sides and then put in the oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. turn chicken and then cook for 15 more minutes.

There it is. Get ready to have your mind blown (I’m being a little dramatic. It WAS good though!)  This is the blog the recipe came from: http://madeitateitlovedit.blogspot.com/2012/03/sweet-and-sour-chicken.html
There are probably more good recipes on there, I haven’t spent any time looking though.
Hope you all enjoy this recipe as much as we did!

New Experiments

This week has been an experimenting kind of week. And when I say experimenting, I mean in the kitchen.

On Sunday I we had 12 people (yes you read the number right) over for dinner. We invited a few couples and before we knew it out living room was full! Everyone brought a dish (I’m not cooking for twelve!) and we had a good time laughing and talking the night away. I made chicken parmesan “bites” (they kind of looked like chicken nuggets) and home made sauce for dipping (just a basic tomato paste base sauce). I’ve discovered the joy of making things at home and saving money, yippee!

Last night I made actual parmesan chicken over noodles and steamed broccoli…I cooked the noodles differently and they were so freaking good. I will definitely do that again. It was also our relief society activity night and we got to make cake pops for our husbands. I didn’t actually make the cake part, they had already done that, but I did the rest of it. It was a lot of fun and it’s the perfect treat for a birthday party, or any occasion! I will admit, I ate some of Anthony’s cake pops. He isn’t a huge fan of frosting but he enjoyed a few;)

They don’t look all smooth and perfect like all the pictures we always see, but they were good. Trust me.

Today I came home from class really wanting to bake something. Google has become my best friend when cooking so I turned to the Internet. I wanted to make muffins at first but since we don’t have a muffin pan I had to find an alternative…which is when I decided on scones. I have never in my life made scones so I was getting a little intimidated at some of the recipes. I stumbled across a pretty easy one and decided to just do it. The recipe was super basic and didn’t have any fruit or anything so I decided to add some frozen blueberries…. I am happy to report that they turned out and I’m afraid I will have to hide them from Anthony! I actually had a lot of fun making them by hand too!

Its always fun to try out new recipes and test them on my husband, but sometimes I am afraid he is just being nice when he tells me something I made is good….hahaha. oh well, if I don’t like the taste of it, chances are it will never show up in our kitchen again.

Sorry I have been so bad about blogging! I will do better! It’s one of my resolutions.