Sunday, February 28, 2016

Slow Cooker Turkey, Kale, and Tortellini Soup

I don't know about you, but anytime we experience winter weather, I crave soup. It's warm, it's comforting... it's the perfect meal to eat whenever the weather outside is frightful! If you are looking for a simple, delicious, and HEALTHY soup to serve your family, look no further than this Slow Cooker Turkey, Kale, and Tortellini Soup.

Another plus to this recipe? It comes out looking so pretty (are you seeing all these vibrant colors?!), making it perfect to serve guests! Pair with a nice red and crunchy baguette and you have yourself a fabulous, no-fuss meal.


  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes 
  • 32 oz. chicken broth
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup white vine vinegar 
  • 8 oz frozen cheese tortellini
  • 1 cup fresh kale

  1. Cook turkey and garlic over medium heat in a large saucepan
  2. Place inside slow cooker, add remaining ingredients, and stir to combine
  3. Cook on low for 4 hours

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Slow Cooker Green Bean and Dumpling Soup

If the weather outside is frightful, there is nothing more comforting than a hot bowl of soup!

But it's Friday and you're fasting from meat... what is a person to do?!

Make this super simple, cost-effective slow cooker green bean and dumpling soup, of course! Your family will love the taste and you will love just how easy it is to make.

Please note: This recipe contains both chicken broth and cream of chicken soup, which the United States Conference of Bishops states is not forbidden during Lent.

  • 3 (10.5oz) cans Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup 
  • 1 (32oz) box Chicken Broth
  • 10 Large Flaky Refrigerator Biscuits
  • 1 (16 oz.) bag of frozen green beans
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)
  1.  Add cream of chicken soup and chicken broth to crock pot. Cook on high for 1 hour (2 hours on low).
  2. Cut each uncooked biscuit into 8 small pieces and stir into the soup mixture. Add frozen green beans and cook on high for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. 
  3. Serve hot and enjoy!

Brandon's Famous Crab Mac-and-Cheese

As the mother of a busy toddler, one of my go-to lunches is mac and cheese. Sure, the stuff from the blue box isn't the healthiest, but after I sprinkle on a spoonful of Chia seeds (my son has come to expect Chia seeds on anything I serve him -- that's a sneaky health tip for you all!) we're good to go.

If you prefer to avoid the blue box, powdered cheese stuff (which is probably wise) and like a better, more grown-up version of this childhood favorite, you will want to make my husband's incredible baked crab mac-and-cheese.

Please note: This recipe has been adapted from Ina Garter.

  • Kosher salt
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 1 quart milk
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 12 ounces Swiss cheese, grated (4 cups)
  • 8 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, grated (2 cups)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 pounds cooked crab meat
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh white bread crumbs (5 slices, crusts removed)
  1.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Drizzle oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the pasta and cook according to the directions on the package, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don't boil it. In a large pot, melt 6 tablespoons of butter and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. Still whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minute or two more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Swiss, Cheddar, 1 tablespoon salt, the pepper, and nutmeg. Add the cooked macaroni and crab and stir well. Place the mixture in 11 x 7 baking dish.
  4. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine them with the fresh bread crumbs, and sprinkle on the top. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the macaroni is browned on the top. 

Mamma's Fruity Shrimp

I know what you're thinking: AGAIN with the shrimp, Annie?

You better believe it!

Today's recipe is one that I made up on the spot and my mom LOVED it (hence the name). If you have a busy day ahead, throw these simple ingredients into your slow cooker and stand by for a little dinner magic.

  • 1 lb. tail less, deveined shrimp
  • 1 can pineapple rings
  • 2 strawberries (sliced)
  • 10 blueberries
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  1. Add soy sauce, water and juice from pineapple can to slow cooker.
  2. Add 10 blueberries, sliced strawberries and 4 pineapple rings to cooker.
  3. Cook on low for 5-7 hours.
  4. Add shrimp.
  5. Cook on low for one hour. Stir Occasionally.
  6. Serve over rice or bed of lettuce.

Shrimp and Artichoke Pasta

This probably goes without saying (considering a majority of my recipes include it), but I REALLY love shrimp! Those little crustaceans are healthy, filling, and relatively inexpensive -- what's not to love?!

If you are planning a special Lenten meal, or just want to impress your dinner guests, this wonderful Shrimp and Artichoke Pasta is a slam-dunk meal that is sure to become a staple in your home.

  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • 12 oz. angel hair pasta or linguini 
  • 4 tsp. Minced Garlic
  • 1 lb. Shrimp (raw, peeled and deveined)
  • 1 ½ cups drained artichoke hearts
  • 1 ½ cups feta cheese (crumbled) 
  • 1 cup chopped tomato 
  • 3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 2 tbsp. fresh oregano chopped or 1 ½ tbsp. dried 

    1. Heat oil, sauté garlic 30 seconds.  
    2. Add shrimp, sauté for 2 minutes.   
    3. Add remaining ingredients except cheese and heat.  Add feta at last.    
    4. Grate asiago or parmesan on top.

Spicy Shrimp and Rice

I know this picture doesn't look the most appetizing, so I am going to come clean with you all: I actually took/edited it when I started my first blog back in 2012. Fortunately, my photog (and editing) skills have greatly improved since then, but the excellent taste of this spicy and savory dish remains the same.

If you are looking to "spice up" your meatless meals this Lent, this Spicy Shrimp and Rice Casserole is sure to satisfy! 

  • 1 (8 ounce) package wild rice
  • 1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 can Rotel (choose your temperature)
  • 1 (10 3/4-ounce can) condensed cream of mushroom soup 
  • 2 cups grated sharp Cheddar  
  1.  Cook the rice according to package directions minus 1/4 cup water. Drain and cool. 
  2. Bring 2 cups water and 1/2 tablespoon salt to a boil in a medium saucepan and cook the shrimp for 1 minute. Drain immediately and set aside.
  3. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. 
  4. In a large bowl, combine the rice, soup, 1 1/2 cups of cheese, shrimp and Rotel. Mix well. Spray a 9-inch square aluminum cake pan or an 11 by 7-inch glass casserole dish with vegetable spray. Place the mixture in the pan and top with remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake for 30 minutes, until bubbly.  

Protein(y) Linguine

I know that plain, buttered noodles aren't everyone's favorite, but... I could seriously eat them everyday! Not only does the staple taste great to me, it also gives me a sense of nostalgia. (When my best friend and I lived together our sophomore year of college, we had no money and would eat plain noodles, Totino's Pizza, and instant mashed potatoes almost weekly.)

Anyway, if you are like me and enjoy some good, old fashioned noodles, you will love this recipe.

If you are like my husband, who likes something with a lot of taste, you will love this recipe.

Take your Lenten taste buds for a spin this Friday night with my easy-to-make Protein(y) Linguine!

  • 1 pound uncooked spaghetti.
  • 2 eggs.
  • 1 stick of butter or margarine.
  • 1 Tbsp. minced garlic.
  • 1/2 grated Parmesan cheese.
  1. Cook 1 pound pasta in boiling water. Once pasta is cooked, promptly strain. 
  2. Once water is strained,  immediately add two eggs (you want to make sure to add the eggs as soon as you strain the water to ensure they cook thoroughly). Stir egg and noodles for 2 minutes. You should notice bits of scrambled egg on the pasta.
  3. Add butter and garlic to microwave-safe bowl. Cook until completely melted. Stir thoroughly.
  4. Add garlic and butter mixture to top of noodles. Stir. Top with Parmesan cheese.
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