Saturday, December 31, 2011

Baked Oatmeal

You will need:
3 c. oats
1 c. brown sugar
2 t. cinnamon
2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1 c. milk
2 eggs
1 stick margarine, melted
2 t. vanilla
3/4 c. craisins (dried cranberries)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix together oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder and salt. Beat in (I use a whisk) milk, eggs, margarine, and vanilla. Stir in craisins. Spread into a 9x13 baking dish. Bake for 40 minutes.


Friday, December 30, 2011

Chicken Rolls

My sister gave me this recipe a long time ago. These are SO GOOD!!

You will need:
1 tube of crescent rolls
Cooked, cubed chicken (about 2 cups or so??)
About 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 can cream of chicken soup
2/3 c. milk

In a small pot, combine soup and milk. Heat on low till heated through and well blended (I whisk mine every so often as it warms up). While soup/milk is warming, take crescent rolls and press 2 triangles together to get a will end up with 4 rectangles. Spread chicken and cheese in the centers of each rectangle and roll up and place in lightly greased 9x13 dish. If you have leftover chicken & cheese, throw it in the soup mixture. Pour soup mixture over the tops of rolls (cover tops lightly otherwise they end up doughy). Bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Delicious!!!

*If you have bigger eaters, you will probably want to double this recipe. It is just enough for our family of 5.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Hot & Spicy Chili

I love chili!! I just made my first pot for the season last week. YUM!! I love being able to put it in the crockpot and smelling it as it cooks all day! :)

My mom has made chili with sausage for as long as I can remember...and it is YUMMY! Sausage puts a totally different spin on chili! I've taken my mom's recipe and tweaked it a bit to add some more flavor and spice. Last year I submitted it for a chili contest and it won runner-up!! :)

You will need:
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 can light red kidney beans, drained
1 can dark red kidney beans, drained
8 oz. can of tomato sauce
1 large can of tomato juice
1 small can mushrooms, drained
1 roll of hot sausage
1 T. chili powder
1/2 t. salt
1/2 T. seasoned salt
1/2 t. onion powder
1 t. cumin
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. oregano

Brown sausage with green pepper & onions; drain and rinse off with hot water to get rid of grease. Combine meat and all remaining ingredients in a crockpot and cook on low all day. (You can also cook on the stove top and let it simmer for a while.)

We serve our chili with mozzarella cheese (it's what I grew up with and we grew to LOVE!)! I know...most think this is an odd cheese choice.

If you prefer a more toned down version (not so spicy), you can use a mild sausage. I've also toned down the spices to a couple of teaspoons of chili powder, salt & pepper, garlic powder and some basil.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Corn Casserole

You will need:
1 stick butter or margarine, melted
1 can creamed corn
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
8 oz. sour cream (I think I usually end up adding more...who measures!?)
2 eggs, beaten
1 Jiffy (off brands work well too!) cornbread mix
1 4 oz. can green chiles chopped & peeled

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Spray 9x13 baking dish. In large bowl, combine all of the above ingredients and mix well. Pour into sprayed dish, spread evenly. Bake 40-45 minutes or until lightly browned.


Zucchini Brownies

Here is another tasty recipe with zucchini. A while back, Tim's mom or sister gave me this recipe.

You will need:
2 c. flour
1 1/4 c. sugar
1 t. salt
1 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1/4 c. cocoa

Combine these ingredients in a large bowl.

Then add:
1 c. oil
2 t. vanilla
2 c. grated zucchini

Stir until mixed together well. Pour into a greased 9x13 baking dish.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.

Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins

I am starting to get quite a bit of zucchini from my little garden. I love being able to make fun things with zucchini...without my kids noticing! ;) One of our favorites are Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins.

You will need:
1 1/2 c. flour
3/4 c. sugar
1 t. baking soda
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1/4 c. milk
1 T. lemon juice
1 t. vanilla
1 c. shredded zucchini
1/4 c. miniature chocolate chips

Combine egg, oil, milk, lemon juice and vanilla; mix well. Stir in flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon and salt until just moistened. Fold in zucchini and chocolate chips. Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups 2/3 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or till done.

*If you like walnuts, you could also add about 1/4 c. in when you add the zucchini & chocolate chips; I choose not to.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Roasted Potatoes

These are SO good!! My whole family LOVES them!

You will need:
6-8 medium sized potatoes, cut into cubes (I leave the skins on)
2 1/2 t. kosher salt
3-4 t. lemon juice
1 1/2 t. dill weed (dried)
3/4 t. paprika
3/4 t. black pepper
3 t. minced garlic
olive oil (I just drizzle this on but I'm guessing it would be about 1/8 - 1/4 c.)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Bake at 400 degrees for about 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Sausage Stuffed Jalapenos

Last week in our small group we celebrated the completion of our Old Testament study with a veggie themed party. One of our group friends brought these stuffed jalapenos...they were DELICIOUS!! I didn't get the recipe from her but I went on a search online and found something either the exact same or very similar. I made them yesterday!!

You will need:

1# ground pork sausage (I used Bob Evans roll sausage, original flavor)
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 c. shredded parmesan cheese (I used 1 c. of the grated kind)
approx. 1# large fresh jalepeno peppers, halved lengthwise and seeded

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Brown sausage; drain off grease and rinse with hot water.

Mix sausage, cream cheese and parmesan cheese. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the sausage mixture into each pepper half. Arrange peppers in a 9x13 baking dish.

I sprinkled about 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese over the top.

Bake 20 minutes until bubbly and lightly browned.

They say you can serve them with ranch dressing...I did not try this as they are good enough just by themselves!

ENJOY!! :)

**Note: While working with the peppers, wearing gloves is beneficial!!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Asian Salad

I was looking online for a recipe to make this type of salad. I ended up taking ideas from a few different recipes to come up with this.

You will need:
1 bag of cole slaw mix (approx. 16 oz.)
1 bunch of green onions, thinly sliced
1 pkg. chicken flavored ramen noodles, broken into small pieces
8 oz. cashews
2 T. butter
2 teaspoons of sesame seeds

1/4 c. sugar
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 T. soy sauce
1/4 c. cider vinegar

In a skillet, melt 2 T. butter and add cashews, noodles and the seasoning packet from the noodles. Toss around in pan until lightly browned. Add sesame seeds toward the end of browning. Once browned, remove from heat to cool.

In large bowl, combine slaw mix, green onions and noodle mixture.

For dressing, combine sugar, oil, soy sauce and vinegar. Mix well with whisk. Pour over salad and toss together.

Serve immediately.


Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Treats

Ever had these? If not, you should give them a try!! YUM!!! Beware though, you might want to eat the whole pan be sure to make them when you can share with several others!!

You will need:
1 c. light corn syrup
1 c. sugar
1 c. peanut butter
2 t. vanilla
6 c. Rice Krispies
1 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 c. butterscotch chips

In large saucepan, bring corn syrup and sugar to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla until smooth and mixed well. Then stir in cereal until well coated. Pour into 9x13 pan. Spray waxed paper or large spatula and flatten evenly into pan.

In small saucepan, melt baking chips over low heat. Spread over rice krispie treats.

Let cool.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Veggie Pizza

I like to make this for something different...sometimes as an alternative to veggies & dip.

You will need:
2 tubes of refrigerated crescent rolls (I used reduced fat)
8 oz. cream cheese (I used the 1/3 less fat)
1 c. mayo (I used light)
1 pkg. ranch dressing mix
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
assorted vegetables, chopped

Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Press crescent rolls into bottom and up sides of pan. Bake at 350 degrees for about 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool.

Combine cream cheese, mayo and ranch mix. Spread over crust.

Top with veggies and cheese. Refrigerate & serve.

Veggie suggestions: red onion, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber, mushrooms, carrots, celery, green pepper, red bell pepper

Monday, March 14, 2011

Homemade French Fries

These are delicious!

You will need:
4 potatoes, each cut into 8 wedges
2 t. olive oil
1 t. basil
1 t. garlic salt

Heat the oven to 500 degrees. Spray a jelly roll pan with cooking spray.

Place potatoes in a bowl. Combine olive oil, basil and garlic salt in a bowl...add potatoes and toss to coat with oil/spice mixture. Arrange in a single layer in your pan. Bake for 15-18 minutes, stirring once halfway through.



We are not huge fans of meatloaf in our house but I give it a try every now & then for something different. We eat meatloaf about once a year. HA! I had made this meatloaf as a freezer meal a few months ago and just pulled it out last week. I was told it was the "best meatloaf I have ever had".

You will need:
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1/2 c. crushed Ritz crackers
3/4 c. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 packet of dry onion soup
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 c. ketchup (plus extra for drizzling)
2 T. steak sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

I mix everything together until it well combined and then shape into a loaf and put into an 8x8 baking dish. (I like to drizzle a little bit of ketchup over the top of the meatloaf before I bake it.)

Bake until the center is no longer pink, approximately 50-70 minutes.


*I found this recipe here on I followed this recipe as written, except for how she mixed it together. Why waste extra dishes??

Strawberry Bread

We've been loading up on the strawberries around here the past few weeks with being able to find them for $1.00. I had some strawberries that I had already cut up...with being gone a lot over the weekend, they just didn't get eaten. I needed to find something to do with them before I ended up having to throw them away. I decided to make some Strawberry Bread for the kids. I had a small piece and it was pretty tasty!! I found this recipe on and made it pretty much as written (a big surprise to those of you that know me).

You will need:
2 c. chopped strawberries (you may want to use more if you want more of a strawberry taste)
3 1/8 c. flour
2 c. sugar
1 T. ground cinnamon
1 t. salt
1 t. baking soda
1 1/4 c. vegetable oil
4 eggs, beaten
1 1/4 c. chopped pecans (I did not use these)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray two loaf pans with cooking spray.

Place chopped strawberries in a medium bowl...sprinkle lightly with sugar.

Combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt & baking soda in a large bowl. Mix together well. Blend eggs & oil into strawberries. Add strawberry mixture to the flour mixture and stir until dry ingredients are just moistened.

Divide batter into pans.

Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes and then remove bread from pans to cool the rest of the way.


Saturday, March 12, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Dip

This is a yummy appetizer that works well for parties and other gatherings.

You will need:
8 oz. cream cheese or neufchatel cheese, softened
1 chicken breast, cooked and shredded (or use a large can of chicken, drained)
8 oz. shredded cheese (I've used cheddar or a colby jack mix)
3/4 c. Red Hot Wings Sauce, Buffalo flavored (lessen this if you're not into spicy food)
1/3-1/2 c. ranch dressing
Tortilla Chips, for serving
Celery, for serving

I start out by melting the cream cheese. You can do this on a stove top or in the microwave. Then I slowly start adding in the other items (except chips & celery) until it is all well blended and melted together.

Serve hot with with chips & celery.

ENJOY!! :)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

You will need:

1 whole chicken
1 can tomato soup
3/4 c. onion, chopped
1/4 c. vinegar
3 T brown sugar
1 T worcestershire sauce
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. dried basil

Put chicken in the crockpot. Combine all of the rest of the ingredients; mix and pour over chicken. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

Enjoy!! :)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Pizza Burgers

I posted this a while back on the Centsible Shopping site...

When we moved from the Chicago area back to Northwest Ohio, our Chicagoland church blessed us with several gifts. One of my favorite gifts that I will always treasure is a cookbook. They knew how much I loved to cook and bake so the wonderful people there wrote their favorite recipes on cards and they were put into a book for me.

One of my family's favorite recipes from this book is Pizza Burgers, a recipe from a very sweet family.

These pizza burgers are yummy, and simple to make too!

You will need:
1 # ground chuck, browned & drained
1/2 c. tomato sauce
1/2 c. ketchup
2 T. parmesan cheese
1/2 t. garlic (I use garlic powder)
1/4 t. oregano
6 Kaiser rolls
Sliced mozzarella cheese

Combine all of the above ingredients except for rolls & mozzarella cheese. Cut the Kaiser rolls in half (like a hamburger bun) and butter the inside top. Add meat mixture and a slice of cheese. Put sandwich together and wrap in foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes.

*When I've not had sliced mozzarella cheese I have used shredded and it works, it's just messier when you are making it. I think I've also used sliced provolone cheese as well.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Taco Pizza

Tacos are one of the kids' favorite meals around here, so this is nice for something a little different but the same taste they love.

You will need:
1 refrigerated thin pizza crust
1 pound ground beef
1 packet taco seasoning
1-2 c. cheddar cheese

Additional toppings:
lettuce, tomato, taco sauce, sour cream, crushed corn chips

Depending on the type of pan you use, you may need to spray with cooking spray. Flatten out the pizza crust into a jelly roll pan (15x10x1). Cook ground beef (drain grease and rinse with hot water if needed). Stir in taco seasoning and 1/4 c. water. Spread evenly over crust. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake at 400 degrees for approximately 13 minutes. Serve with your favorite toppings.

Enjoy!!! :)

Friday, February 18, 2011

Birthday Ice Cream Dessert

This is the YUMMY dessert that we use quite often for the kids' birthday parties. It was enjoyed by all...and is very easy to make!

You will need:
1 brownie mix (& ingredients listed on package)
1 gallon vanilla ice cream
Hershey's chocolate syrup
1 jar maraschino cherries

Spray bottoms of 2- 9" round cake pans with cooking spray. Cut wax paper to size of bottom of pan; then lay in the pan. Spray the wax paper. Prepare brownie mix as stated on box. Divide brownie batter into the cake pans. Bake according to directions states on box (I did 350 degrees for about 20-22 minutes). Let cool. Sit ice cream out to soften a bit and then spread over the brownies. Freeze. Once the ice cream has hardened some, pull out and drizzle chocolate syrup over the top, divide cherries between the two brownies, drizzle again with chocolate syrup and then put on sprinkles (you can also do the decorating just prior to serving but I think it tends to be a bit messier this way). Freeze until ready to serve. You can either cut it in the pans and serve out of there...or take a knife and remove the brownie and ice cream from the pan edges and carefully lift out of the pan and put on a serving plate.

ENJOY!!! :)

*You can also get creative and change this up a bit...
I think it'd be super yummy with mint chocolate chip ice cream (my FAVORITE!)...or what about making it a turtle sundae type of dessert--caramel, chocolate, some pecans?? You could add fresh many options!!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Cinnamon Crescent Rolls

This is a repost from the Centsible Shopping site. I posted it in May 2009. I thought I'd leave the story as to how these came to be.

My kids REALLY look forward to Saturday breakfast...they were already asking me last night what was for breakfast. Yikes!--knowing that I might need to break "tradition". A lot of times I'll make them cinnamon rolls (the refrigerated tubes) and they obviously LOVE this. Last night they were asking if I was making cinnamon rolls...I had to tell them no. They were on sale this past week, but I didn't buy them because the grocery budget was tight already and this was something I chose to leave off the grocery list. Then they started begging for donuts...another "no" due to needing to stay within budget. Zak, our oldest, says that budgets stink (Tim was in full agreement). I told him I would figure something special out...but I forgot to look through recipes last night. Ooops!! I realized this as soon as I woke up this morning. Hmmmm...what could I come up with...and quickly!?

I knew I had some crescent rolls (again, refrigerated tubes) in the fridge, and thought about spreading some butter on them, sprinkling with some cinnamon & sugar, roll them up and then bake. I thought I could mix up some powdered sugar with water or milk for a drizzle. I looked online to see if I could find similar ideas from others and saw where some people also added brown sugar to their mix. Here is what I came up with:

You will need:
2 tubes of crescent rolls (8 in each)--I used reduced fat...not that it made any difference with all I was about to add!
6 T. margarine, softened--I put mine in the microwave for a few seconds to soften but not totally melt
1/3 c. brown sugar
1 T. sugar
1 t. cinnamon
3/4 c. powdered sugar
1 T. milk
1/4 t. vanilla

Open the crescent roll tubes and unroll the dough so that you have two big rectangles. Press together all of the perforations. In a bowl, mix together margarine, brown sugar, sugar and cinnamon. Spread over rectangles. Roll up the rectangles, starting on the short end (you could probably start at the long end and get mini cinnamon rolls). Cut into rolls--I cut them about 1" thick. Place in round cake pans (you may want to lightly spray b/c mine stuck a little bit). I baked at 375 degrees for about 12-13 minutes. While they are baking, mix together powdered sugar, milk and vanilla. When rolls are done, let them cool for about 5-10 minutes. Then drizzle with powdered sugar mixture and serve. ENJOY!!! My kids did!! :)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Pizza Crust #2

I've seen this recipe a few places (I printed it from Sharpen Your Scissors) is supposed to be a mock recipe for the Pizza Hut crust. Well, I think it is far from tasting like Pizza Hut but it does taste decent and is one of my family's favorite pizza crust recipes that I've used.

You will need:
1 1/3 c. warm water
2 t. sugar
1 1/4 t. salt
2 T. olive oil (plus extra for prebaking)
3 1/4 c. flour
1 t. baking powder
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. onion powder
1 1/2 t. yeast
2 T. cornmeal (optional)

The original recipe was intended for a bread machine. I've done my own thing with it and it seems to work:

Combine all of the dry ingredients in a bowl (except that for later!), add the wet ingredients and then knead it by hand for about 10 minutes BUT it is SO much easier if you have a Kitchen Aid Mixer with a dough hook to do the kneading for you!!

Once it is all kneaded together, place in a bowl, cover it with a towel and let it rise for about one hour. It should about double in size.

Divide the dough into two balls and make it into two medium sized pizza crusts by stretching the dough. Brush the crust with a little bit of olive oil and then sprinkle with cornmeal.

Prebake the crusts in a 450 degree oven for 10 minutes. Then add your choice of toppings and bake for 10-15 minutes longer.

ENJOY!! :)

*I have been trying to use more whole wheat flour in various baking. I tried this recipe with it and used about 2/3 whole wheat and the remaining amount regular flour. The texture of the crust was a totally different consistency than when I had used all white flour and it did not rise as much. It still tasted very good...just a thinner and crispier crust. My family enjoyed it and still say it is the best crust that I've experimented I'll keep messing with it and see what happens!

Pizza Crust #1

This is a pizza crust recipe that I've made for a long time. This is one of our favorites. I am posting another one of our favorites in a separate post.

You will need:
1 packet (.25 oz) of active dry yeast
1/2 t. brown sugar
1 1/2 c. warm water (110 degrees F)
1 t. salt
2 T. olive oil
3 1/3 c. flour

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and brown sugar in warm water. Let sit for 10 minutes. Stir the salt and oil into the yeast mixture. Mix in 2 1/2 c. of flour. Turn dough onto clean, well floured surface and knead in more flour until the dough is no longer sticky. (Hint: For easier clean up, I do all of this on a sheet of waxed paper.) Put dough into a well-oiled bowl, cover with a towel and let rise till the dough doubles in size. This should take about 1 hour. Punch down the dough and form into a tight ball. Let the dough relax for 1 minute and then roll out to fit your pizza pan(s). I usually split it in two and make 2 crusts to fit two 12" pans/stones.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place your favorite toppings on your pizza and bake for about 15-20 minutes.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Orange Spiced Cider Mix

I love this stuff!! I am not much of a hot drink kind of person but I really do love this! When we lived in Chicagoland I was given a similar recipe that was called Russian Tea. I think the one difference is that the recipe I had for Russian Tea had lemonade in it too. Both recipes are GREAT!! And it smells SO good!! :)

You will need:
1 c. white sugar
1 c. Tang
1/2 c. instant tea (I use unsweetened)
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ground cloves

Combine all of the ingredients and store in a sealed container.

To drink, mix 2-3 tablespoons into a mug of hot water.

**This makes a great gift! Pour the mix in a plastic bag, tie with a cute ribbon and stuff into a coffee mug.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Banana Bread

So what do you do with your rotting...I mean, very ripe bananas??

My kids' favorite...Banana Bread!

When I worked at the bank several years ago, my co-workers and I used to order from LTD all of the time). One of my purchases was a Mrs. Field's Cookie Book, 100 Recipes from the Kitchen of Mrs. Fields. What a great purchase that was!! :) I love it and it has gotten MUCH use! Her banana bread recipe is our favorite from the book.

You will need:
2 1/2 c. flour (I used 1/2 regular flour and 1/2 whole wheat)
1 1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
3/4 c. butter, softened (I use margarine)
1 1/2 c. brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
3 c. ripe bananas, mashed (I do not mash...I just throw them in whole and they get mashed w/ my is about 7 medium sized bananas)
1 t. vanilla
1 c. walnuts (optional) OR a fun addition is miniature chocolate chips!!

*I've also been playing around with flaxseed...I added 2 tablespoons to this recipe.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Spray two loaf pans with cooking spray.

I sprinkle the bottoms of the pans with cinnamon & sugar...this is my own addition...and sometimes the top after the batter is poured in.

Combine flour, soda and salt. Mix together with whisk; set aside.
I always skip this step in baking anything...who wants to dirty another bowl...not me!!

In large bowl, cream together butter and sugar with electric mixer. Add eggs, bananas (mashed or not) and vanilla; beat at medium speed until thick.

Add in flour mixture (or just add in flour, soda and salt if you did not combine earlier) and nuts; blend at low speed until just combined. Do not overmix.

Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake for 60-70 minutes. Toothpick should come out clean.

Cool and remove from pan.

ENJOY!! :)