5.15.2017

Blackened Cajun Shrimp Tacos with Avocado Salsa

http://therecipecritic.com/2017/04/blackened-cajun-shrimp-tacos-avocado-salsa/

  • 1 pound jumbo shrimp peeled and deveined, remove tails if wanted
  • 1 Tablespoon cajun seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Avocado salsa:
  • 3 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 (11 ounce) can yellow corn, drained
  • 1 (15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • ½ red onion, diced
  • 2 avocados, diced
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • juice of one lime
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • crumbled feta for topping, optional
  • 4-6 flour tortillas for serving


  1. In a medium sized bowl add the shrimp and cajun seasoning. Toss until coated. In a medium sized skillet over medium high heat add olive oil and shrimp. Cook for about 2-3 minutes until no longer pink.
  2. To make the avocado salsa: Add the tomatoes, corn, black beans, red onion, avocado, and cilantro to a bowl. Salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Assemble the tacos dividing the avocado salsa and topping with shrimp. Sprinkle with crumbled feta and serve immediately.

Turkey Lettuce Wraps...

1 lb. Ground Turkey
1/2 diced Red Pepper
Handful of Matchstick Carrots
Soy Sauce
Sweet Chili Sauce

Brown Turkey, Red Pepper, and Carrots.  When done drain any liquid in the pan.  Add soy sauce and sweet chili sauce to taste and let simmer on low for 10 minutes.  Spoon meat into romaine or green leaf lettuce, wrap and eat.

Zesty Lime Chicken Tacos...

1/2 bottle Kraft Zesty Lime Vinaigrette Dressing
16 oz. jar Salsa Verde
1 can diced Green Chilies
1/2 can diced Jalapeños (optional)
Juice from 2 limes
4-5 Chicken Breast

Combine in crockpot and cook for 4-8 hours or until shreddable.  Shred chicken and then place back into the juice/liquid in the crockpot.  Serve in flour or corn tortillas with cheese, beans, lettuce, and avocado.  We also like to top them with sour cream or cafe rio ranch.  This chicken is also so good in a salad with black beans, tomatoes, and dressing.

Calico Baked Beans...

1/2 lb. Bacon
1/2 Chopped Onion
1/2 lb. Hamburger
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Dried Mustard
16 oz. Pork and Beans
16 oz. Pinto Beans partially drained
16 oz. Black Beans drained and rinsed
16 oz. Kidney Beans Drained
3/4 cup Ketchup
1 cup Brown Sugar
3 tsp. Apple Cider Vinegar

Cook and crumble bacon and set aside.  Brown hamburger and onion together till hamburger is cooked through.  Combine the rest of the ingredients and place in a 8x10 tin foil dish.  Put on treager for 1 hour on 300 degrees.  If you don't have a trigger cook in oven on 350 degrees for 40 minutes.


4.03.2017

Conference Crepes

2 eggs
2 tbsp of sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups of milk
1 cup of flour
1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
oil for pan (I have found this to be optional if using a good non-stick pan)

Instructions:
Mix all the ingredients in a mixer or a blender really well and let sit for a few minutes.  Heat a non stick frying pan with a 1/2 tsp of oil really well or spray it generously with cooking spray.  It is very important that the pan is hot.  Pour 1/4-1/3 of a cup of the crepe mixture, or more depending on your pan size, into the pan and spread the mixture to cover the entire pan, by rotating the pan.  Leave about 1 to 2 min per side then flip over or until you see the edges of the crepe starting to brown a little bit. Once the crepe is done on one side it will also be able to slide it around and flip it over.  Repeat steps until you've prepared all the crepes.  You can just pile them all up on a plate as you cook them.

Fill crepes with berries, bananas, nutella, jam, cookie butter, pastry cream, cream cheese mix (see recipe below), whipped cream, etc. and roll and serve.

Cream Cheese Filling for Crepes:

8oz Cream Cheese, softened to room temp
8 oz Extra Creamy Cool Whip (defrosted in the fridge overnight)
2 tsp. Lemon Juice
1/2 c. Powdered Sugar (or to taste)
Mix all ingredients well and serve in crepes.

2.28.2017

Shelly's Salsa

This makes a ton, so I usually half the recipe for just my family.  

Ingredients:
2 cans (15 ounce) Whole Tomatoes with Juice
2 cans (10 ounce) Rotel Tomatoes with Juice (mild or any other variety)
1/2 white onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-2 Jalapenos, finely chopped (seeds and ribs removed for less heat!)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher Salt (less if you use table salt)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Black Pepper to taste
2 tablespoons Ketchup
1 cup Cilantro, rough chopped
1-2 Limes, juiced (depending on size of lime)
Splash of white vinegar 

Directions:
Combine all of the above ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until you get the desired consistency you like. Test for seasonings and add some more if needed. Let the salsa sit for at least an hour or so in the refrigerator to let the flavors blend. This will keep for at least a week in the refrigerator. Enjoy!

2.27.2017

Protein Waffles...

1 Scoop Protein Powder (Quest Powder works well)
1 Full Egg
1 tsp. baking powder
3 T. water

Mix really really well and pour into waffle maker.

Top with PB2 mixed with sugar free syrup and a few berries.  You can also top with a little spray whip cream.

For 2 Waffles
182 Calories
7.4  Carbs
6.8 Fat
31 Protein

Protein Donuts...

3 scoops protein powder (I like to use Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Birthday Cake Flavor)
3/4 Cup Pumpkin Puree
2 Whole Eggs
1 tsp. baking powder

Mix all ingredients in a kitchen aid mixer until really smooth.  Pour batter into a zip lock bag and cut the end off and pour into a 6 count non stick donut pan sprayed with a little bit of pam.
Bake at 350 for 11 minutes or until cooked through.  I store these in the fridge after they have cooled. I also like to top them with the spray whip cream when I eat them.

(Per Donut)
92 calories
15 protein
3 carbs
2 fat


2.02.2017

Cookie Dough Dip

1 (8oz) package cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
1 cup powdered sugar
2 TBS. brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup toffee bits

Instructions:
Cream together cream cheese and butter. Add all other ingredients and mix until well combined.
Serve with apple wedges.

1.25.2017

7 Layer Dip

1 (15 oz.) can refried beans
1 (4oz.) can diced green chilies
1 pt. sour cream
2-3 tsp. taco seasoning
3-4 avocados
3/4 cup salsa
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. lemon juice
2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
3-4 tomatoes, diced
2-3 green onions, sliced
1 large can black olives, sliced

Beat beans  with mixer until smooth and add taco seasoning, and green chilies.  Spread over a platter.  Spread sour cream over beans.  Mash avocados with lemon juice, garlic powder and salsa.  Spread over sour cream.  Sprinkle with cheese, tomatoes, onions and olives.  Serve with tortilla chips.  

1.18.2017

Instant Pot Steel Cut Oatmeal

There are 100 different ways to do everything in the IP, so when I find the way that works for me I like to write it down so I don't forget.  This is how I like Instant Pot steel cut oats.  The best part is that I can set the delay start the night before and we wake up to hot oatmeal!

1 c. steel cut oats
3 c. water
2 TB butter or coconut oil
pinch of salt
tiny splash of vanilla
You can also add spices like cinnamon, etc.

Place all ingredients in the pot, stir, and cook on (manual) high pressure for 4 minutes.  Then let it naturally release pressure until the "pin" drops.  Open the pot, stir, and serve (with butter and brown sugar!).  When I first open the pot it seems "watery" a lot of times, but if you stir it up the water just stirs right in and you are left with creamy steel cut oats.

Also, a tiny bit of Amber/Emily's Caramel Syrup drizzled over the top is really yummy.  Don't ask me how I know.  LOL

1.16.2017

Instant Pot Refried Beans

  • recipe slightly adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 jalapeño, cored, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 1/2 pounds dry pinto beans, rinsed
  • 8 cups water
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar

  1. In the insert of an electric pressure cooker (or in a stovetop pressure cooker), heat the oil (using the Sauté function on the InstantPot) and add the jalapeños, onion, and garlic, and sauté for 1-2 minutes, stirring often.
  2. Add the rinsed and drained beans, water, broth, salt and vinegar.
  3. Secure the lid on the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 30 minutes (stovetop) and 35 minutes (electric).
  4. Let the pressure naturally release. Reserve two cups of the liquid in a separate bowl.
  5. Drain the rest of the liquid off the beans. Using an immersion blender, potato masher (or spooning the beans into a blender), process/mash to the desired consistency, adding reserved cooking water, if needed for a smoother/softer consistency.
  6. Refrigerate for up to a week or freeze for several months.
I froze the leftovers in 2 cup increments in quart-sized freezer bags and they thaw and reheat great.  

Instant Pot Mexican Style Shredded Beef

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 Pounds beef chuck roast
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 Cloves fresh garlic (minced)
  • 10 Ounce can diced tomatoes & green chilies
  • 1/2 Large onion (sliced)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Juice of one lime (about 2 Tablespoons)
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 3/4 Tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder

DIRECTIONS

Salt and pepper both sides of the chuck roast.  I had to cut mine into two pieces. 
Select the Saute button on your Instant Pot, and add the oil.
Brown the chuck roast on both sides, about 4 minutes per side.

Remove the roast to a plate and deglaze the pot with the tomatoes and water.  Then place the roast back into the pot.
Add the garlic and onion slices. 
Place the lid on the Instant Pot, select the high pressure setting, and set the timer for 75 minutes
The Instant Pot will beep when it is finished. Allow the built up pressure to release naturally, then remove the lid.
Shred the beef with two forks, I place mine on a large dinner plate.
Remove the tomatoes and onions from the pot and return the shredded beef.  I strain them but keep some of the juice to moisten the meat with.  Add it back into the beef when you put it back into the pot.  
Add the lime juice, cumin, chili powder, and cilantro, stir to combine.
Place the lid back on top of the pot until ready to serve.

Beef can be used to make tacos, salad, burritos, chimichangas, etc. 

Instant Pot Mac and Cheese

  • 1 box (16 ounce) of elbow macaroni
  • 4 cups of water
  • 3 Tb of butter
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup of heavy whipping cream (can sub 1 can of evaporated milk(12 ounce), half and half, or even whole milk)
  • 2 cups of shredded medium or sharp cheddar cheese
Place the macaroni, water, salt and butter into the Instant Pot.  Set Instant Pot on 4 minutes high pressure and do a quick release of the pressure as soon as it's done.  Take lid off and immediately add whipping cream and stir. Then slowly add cheese and stir until it melts.  You can add a little hot sauce and dry mustard for flavor if desired.

10.19.2016

Sweet Bacon Chili...


Ingredients:
  • 1 lb lean ground beef 
  • 1 medium yellow or white onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and finely diced
  • 4-5 slices bacon, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 1 can mild chili beans (15 oz)
  • 1 can tomato sauce (8 oz)
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes, *chopped (15 oz)
  • 2/3 C ketchup 
  • 1/4 C brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce 
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
 
Directions:
  1. Cook bacon over medium-high heat until crisp. 
  2. Remove from pan and set aside to drain on a paper towel lined plate. 
  3. Drain bacon grease from pan leaving about 1 Tbsp. 
  4. Add onion and jalapeño and cook for 2-3 minutes. 
  5. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. 
  6. Add ground beef and cook until browned. Drain excess grease from pan. 
  7. Add all remaining ingredients including bacon. 
  8. Stir all together then let simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. 
  9. Add more cayenne and salt to taste if needed. Just a pinch at a time.