Let me start by saying I love fried food. You can go anywhere and find fried food. Fried oreos, onion rings, french fries, etc. I’m sure if someone could figure out a way to fry Coke they would! But healthy fried food? I’m sure the wheels are already turning in your heads…
I have spent some time chatting all things Kitchen Day over on my Facebook page using live videos. I am really enjoying sharing what’s happening in my kitchen on these days with y’all! And apparently, y’all love it too, because I have gotten so many comments and emails about how helpful it is. And can I just tell you – nothing makes me happier! This past week, I talked about prepping meats in advance and y’all had a lot to say! But before we dive into that…
When is Kitchen Day?
If you’ve followed me for long at all you know that I don’t like making broth at all. Bone broth – nope, not for me! In fact, because of a pregnancy issue that I had with Andy, I didn’t make for a LONG time – like over 6 years! I had awful morning sickness (the all-day kind) and the smell of cooking broth made me so sick that it took me YEARS to overcome it.
But something happened that changed my mind… I got mad.
I can get pretty hot over a lot of things, but broth is probably a new one. Why did I get mad about broth? Well, I wanted to incorporate more bone broth into our diet, but when I looked around the shelves, there was sugar in every single bone broth my store carried! Bone broth doesn’t need sugar! What in the world? I had been making broth for years and NEVER added sugar – or even thought about adding sugar. I should add that I’m not anti-sugar… I eat chocolate and dessert on Sundays. So it’s not like I’m totally against sugar.
I just try to stay clear of products that have sugar added for no good reason.
We get enough sugar from our Sunday desserts thank you very much… we don’t need it in our beef broth too. Why couldn’t I find a brand of bone broth that did not have added sugar? This whole “sugar in the broth” experience spurred me to make homemade broth again. And I have to admit, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. [Read more…]
I have written about meal planning before – and shared how I use this Meal Planning Printable I adapted from Jessica Fisher to make my life simple and more organized! I print a copy of this meal planning sheet EVERY week to do my meal planning. And I should add that my favorite saying is on this printable…
Feed the people, keep them alive.
I get a lot of questions about my meal planning routine and how I go about doing it. The real reason for the success of my meal planning method is actually a relatively new approach and it may come as a surprise to you! My new secret is that I actually ask the family what THEY want to eat! My new secret weapon to meal planning seems pretty obvious, but until recently I never did this! I just planned my menu based on what I wanted or what I thought they might like. Now, the day before I sit down to meal plan, I actually ask everyone… [Read more…]
The past few months I have been trying to work on drinking more water. Here’s the deal y’all… I don’t like water. Bleh, I just don’t like it. I’ve always been a big drinker. Wink, wink – HA. I mean, I love coffee! And, if you’ve followed me for any amount of time you know this!
But I have been working hard on drinking more water.
Over the years, I’ve had friends who carry around their bottles of water. They are like superstars or something. I wish it came naturally to me to drink water… but it just doesn’t. Don’t tell anyone… but I’m a pop (or soda, or whatever you might call it in your part of the world) girl! It’s only been in the last year or two that I’ve stopped drinking pop and started drinking water. I’m simply not a fan of water. But when I need to be drinking more water and don’t, I end up with really bad headaches. If I start to get a headache, I know that I haven’t had enough water (or magnesium). [Read more…]
I tend to get a lot of questions about how I am cooking from scratch for my family, especially over on Instagram, where I post weekly meal plans, meal prep, favorite cookbooks, etc., as well as pictures of lots of food! Today, I’m answering a handful of those questions and my hope is that this is a help to y’all as you brave the cooking from scratch terrain in your own kitchens. [Read more…]
I’m so excited and I know y’all are going to be so happy too. Why?! Because today, I’m sharing the recipe for the best homemade ranch dressing of all time. I should know, because I love ranch dressing. This isn’t my recipe, but it’s one that has earned a very coveted spot in my favorite recipes binder. You know it’s serious when I preserve a recipe in a sheet protector for all eternity, y’all.
For over 8 years, I searched for a homemade ranch dressing recipe because as you may know, most store-bought ranch is bad news. If you have never checked out the ingredients on the back of a bottle of Hidden Valley Ranch or one of those Good Seasons paper packets… you probably should. They may not taste bad, but both are full of crummy artificial ingredients, MSG, and more! [Read more…]
Today, I’m sharing Part 2 of my very favorite main dish recipes! Y’all know I love cook (and eat!), so one post didn’t quite cover all my favorites! Let’s dig right in:
Crock-pot Cheeseburger Meatloaf – This is quite possibly my favorite meatloaf recipe of all time. And that’s saying a lot! If you don’t want to make this in your crockpot, you can bake in your over for an hour and it’s just as good.
Texas Hash – It may not look appetizing, but it is soon good. It’s a recipe that my kids AND I both love. I always love a hash because it’s easy to throw together for a quick dinner.
MaMa’s Crock Pot Cube Steak – This recipe came from my friend Tia and while it is a little time-intensive, it is worth every single second! If you have not made this before…you need to put it on your meal plan for sure! I do use homemade cream of mushroom soup in this recipe. It cooks all day long and turns into a pot of glorious happiness.
Pressure Cooker Pot Roast – Obviously, I am not paleo…Hello bread. But I do love a good pot roast! This recipe was really easy and the meat turned out super tender.
Easy Ground Beef Stroganoff – My family and I love easy main dish recipes. This is definitely one of those! Mel’s Kitchen Cafe is a great blog and this recipe is by far the best I’ve ever found.
Pressure Cooker Mongolian Beef – Y’all know I love my pressure cooker! This is one of my favorite pressure cooker recipes. It’s got this rich, flavorful sauce that just soaks in to some fluffy rice perfectly. Barry is a big fan of this recipe.
Mom’s Salisbury Steaks – This is (surprise, surprise) my mom’s recipe. She (oddly enough) uses cornflakes in this recipe. This is the only reason I ever buy cornflakes. LOL. But these are always delicious!
Parmesan-Crusted Tilapia – This is one of the few fish recipes I make. My kids always say, “Yum! This is good chicken, mom!” 😉
Salmon Burgers – While I may not be very fond of fish, I don’t mind canned salmon or tuna. These burgers a fun alternative to my usual tuna melt.
Super Easy Skinny Veggie Crock Pot Lasagna – this recipe is almost exactly like my Crock Pot lasagna, except it uses vegetables instead of meat. It’s delicious. We love having this meatless meal in our rotation!
Pasta with White Bean Alfredo Sauce. This is from Kitchen Stewardships’ Everything Bean cookbook. We love this pasta! I always puree the beans and my kids don’t even know they are in there! It’s a great meatless meal option.
Italian Chicken Casserole – This is a really old recipe from Tasty Kitchen, The Pioneer Woman’s contribution site. We love it, and it travels well, if you have to take a dish to an event.
Million Dollar Spaghetti Casserole – I feel like I have shared this recipe with y’all 700 times. But I can’t help it. We just love it! It’s perfect to take to church potlucks or to bring to new moms. We also love that it is a meatless meal!
Spaghetti Comodoro with Homemade 15 Minute Meatballs – This recipe had me at 15 minute meatballs. Seriously awesome!
Light Fettuccini Alfredo – Don’t get me wrong, I love a good Fettuccine Alfredo. But this recipe is so creamy and delicious, but not as heavy as some the recipes out there. I love that we never feel “heavy” after eating this.
One Pot Spaghetti – This is one of the most popular main dish recipes on my blog – I mean, HANDS down. It’s easy, delicious and super affordable to make.
The Pioneer Woman’s Cajun Chicken Pasta – It’s no secret that I absolutely love The Pioneer Woman. Every recipe of hers that I have ever tried has been delicious! And this one is my favorite recipes of hers of ALL Time. It’s incredibly good!
Pepperoni Pizza Puffs – This recipe was adapted from Everyday with Rachel Ray. My kids absolutely love these. They are basically pizza muffins – how can you go wrong? These make a fun dinner for family movie night.
Bacon Cheeseburger Quesadillas – These are so simple and delicious. You can go wrong with bacon. And cheeseburgers. AND quesadillas!
Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps – Another family favorite that is perfect for summer time. These are very flavorful – just so, so good!
BLT Quesadilla Wrap – This one is a fun twist on a traditional Mexican quesadilla and it’s a great meal in the summertime!
Mini Corndog Muffins – This is a special treat meal that I make for my kids sometimes. I know hot dogs are still processed meat, but I buy uncured nitrate/nitrite free beef hot dogs at Walmart and feel better about feeding those to my family.
Gringa Mexican Rice – This is one of my newer main dish recipes that I’ve recently started making and I must say…everyone loves it! Rice, meat, and corn – it’s simple and really yummy.
7-Layer Dip Burritos – Y’all – this recipe will blow your mind. Seriously. These are delicious.
Best Chicken Enchilada Recipe Ever – I know it’s hard to believe that these are actually the best enchiladas ever…but I have made A LOT of them and these are just so, so good
Soups, Salad, and More:
Crock-Pot Cincinnati Chili – I’ve gotten a lot of emails from people from Cincinnati who tell my chili is not ACTUALLY true Cincinnati chili because it has no cocoa powder in it. But just keeping it real y’all, I prefer mine without it. And also, because I get asked this a lot, Cincinnati chili is TOTALLY different from regular chili – and you eat it over noodles instead of cornbread.
Cornbread Salad – This recipe is almost too easy to be considered a recipe! It’s just crumbled cornbread with ranch and whatever veggies you’ve got on hand. We love it and make it a lot in the summer time.
Egg Salad – Nothing fancy about my recipe, but it’s one of my go-to main dish recipes for the summer time when I don’t want to crank up the oven.
Crock-pot Beanie Weenies – For some reason this super simple dish is a kid favorite in my house. And I love that it doesn’t take much effort and just cooks in the Crock Pot all day.
Broccoli Cheddar Baked Potatoes – I realize this doesn’t sound like it should be one of my main dish recipes, but it’s a great affordable and delicious meatless meal option. It’s very filling! I cut the milk in half whenever I make this recipe because I like my cheese sauce to stand up and walk. If you prefer a runnier cheese sauce, then go ahead and make it as the recipe is written.
Phew! And now I’m hungry for dinner 😉
Comment below with your favorite main dish recipes and let me know if you think there is something I should add to my collection.
I have several requests to talk about my favorite recipes by category so today we’ll get into my favorite main dish recipes! I will have to split this category up into two posts (click here for part 2)…because it would be WAY too long to do in just one.
One of my tricks for meal planning is having easy access to ALL my favorite and most-used recipes.
To make things convenient, I print them out and store the recipes in page protectors in a 3-inch binders. I divide them up by category (breakfast, dinner, etc.) When I make my meal plan, I chose one or two new recipes and then the rest are old standbys from the binder. I clean it out a few times a year to make room for new recipes we try and love. Here are my Favorite Main Dish Recipes! [Read more…]
No matter how much I talk about whole grains, bread, my bread machine and bread-making, y’all always seem to be interested in learning more! And I also make a lot of jokes about my kids’ stomachs being like bottomless pits.
My kids are for real hungry ALL the time.
As soon as they are done with their breakfast they are asking what’s for snack. Not even that they are hungry right that minute, but they just want the blessed assurance that snack time is coming.
I’ve been really, really busy the past year or so – especially in the last 3 months.
And as a result, I had gotten kind of lax with making everything from scratch. I was buying lots of snacks from the store for the kids instead of making my usual triple batches of muffins, granola bars, and more. A couple of times, I bought some really tasty and expensive “healthy” waffles, they were good, but here’s the thing… [Read more…]