{Tex Mex Bake}

This is an incredibly easy, delicious, and filling dinner that is great for busy nights when you don’t really feel like cooking. My kids love this one!

INGREDIENTS:

2 pounds lean ground beef or lean ground turkey
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup frozen corn kernels
1 1/2 cups salsa
1 can (15 ounce) pinto beans
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

FOR THE CORNBREAD TOPPING:

½ cup cornmeal
1 ½ cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1/3 cup oil
2 eggs, beaten
1 ¼ cup milk

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat the oven to 375. Lightly grease a 9X13 inch pan and set aside.

In a large 12-inch skillet, brown the ground beef and onion, adding the salt and pepper, over medium-high heat until the beef is no longer pink. Drain the grease from the pan. Stir in the corn, salsa, and beans. Pour the beef mixture into the prepared 9X13 inch baking pan and set aside.

For the cornbread, combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Make a well in the center and add the oil, beaten eggs and milk. Whisk together until just moistened and no dry spots remain.

Sprinkle the cheese over the beef mixture and pour the cornbread batter over the cheese and beef mixture. Gently spread the cornbread to the edges of the pan, evening it out over the top of the casserole.

Bake for 45-50 minutes until the edges are bubbly and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cornbread comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs. Let the casserole stand for 10 minutes before serving.

 

Adapted slightly from: Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

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{Chicken Enchilada Pasta}

This meal was really simple to throw together and it was a good mix up from regular pasta dishes. The Mexican flavors were really creamy and delicious.

 

Ingredients: 

2-3 chicken breasts, cooked & shredded
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 {4 oz.} can diced green chiles
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
2 {10 oz.} cans green chili enchilada sauce
2/3 cups red enchilada sauce
2 cups shredded cheese {I used colby & monterrey jack}
1 cup sour cream
Penne pasta
Optional toppings
Avocado
Green Onions
Black Olives
Tomatoes
Sour Cream
Directions:
Cook chicken, drain, and shred.  Meanwhile boil pasta according to package and chop the veggies. Heat olive oil in a deep skillet and cook onions for about 3 mintures. Add garlic and red pepper and cook another 3 minutes.
Add cooked chicken, green chilies, cumin, chili powder, salt and enchilada sauces. Let sauce simmer for about 10 minutes. Add cheese and stir until the cheese is melted and heated through. Now toss in the 1 cup of sour cream, DO NOT bring to a boil otherwise it will curdle. Stir until the sour cream is well mixed and heated through. Drain the pasta and return to pot. Pour sauce and mix well. Serve and garnish with option toppings.
Recipe Source: Pintrest

{Fresh Guacamole}

We are big Guac fans over here! This is better than any guacamole I have ever had, my husband and kids couldn’t stop eating it. We have been making this recipe for a couple years, and never will we go back to store bought or package mixes again.

Ingredients: 

3 Avocados, pitted and diced
2 Roma Tomatoes, seeds removed and diced small
2-3 Tbs Red Onion, diced small
2 Tbs Fresh Cilantro, chopped
1 whole lime, juiced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp Sea Salt

In a large bowl, slightly mash the avocado pieces. Then add the juice of one whole lime and a teaspoon of sea salt, and toss. Next add the minced garlic, chopped roma tomatoes, red onion and cilantro. Toss gently, and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

{Mexican Lime Soup}

Very yummy and easy soup. The flavors blend so good together, giving this soup tons of flavor.

3-4 limes
2 large chicken breasts
1 tsp kosher salt, plus more to taste
1/2 tsp pepper, plus more to taste
1 Tbs olive oil
1 large white onion, chopped
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeño chili, seeded and minced
3 cups chicken broth
3 cups water
1 1/2 tsp mexican oregano, you can use regular if you don’t have mexican
1 avocado, pitted, peeled and diced
2 oz queso fresco, crumbled

Juice as many limes as you need to, to get 1/4 cup fresh lime juice. Use the remaining limes for serving in your soup. season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper. In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the chicken, and cook until brown on both sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate. Add the onions to the pan and saute until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and chili and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the broth, water and lime juice and oregano, then return the chicken to the pan.
Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to med-low, cover and simmer unti the chicken shows no sign of pink, about 40 minutes.
Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let cool slightly. Meanwhile, keep the soup at a simmer. Shred the chicken and stir chicken back into the soup. Adjust the season with salt and pepper until desired taste.
Put the avocado, cheese and lime wedges in separate small bowls. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with the toppings.

Recipe Source: Williams Sonoma 

{Hearty Barley and Mushroom Soup}

One of my husbands clients had a big convention on Diabetes awarness and prevention. We got invited to attend. Bobby Deen was the guest speaker and also made this soup for everyone. It was very delicious. It’s very healthy, and diabetic friendly. It’s very simple to make. Try it out!

1 oz dried porcini mushrooms
2 cups boiling water
1 Tbs olive oil
2 large portobella mushroom caps, chopped
1 large leek (white and green part only) sliced and rinsed well
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 (32oz) container chicken broth
3/4 cup pearl barley
2 Tbs fresh dill, chopped
6 Tbs plain greek yogurt

Place dried mushrooms in a small bowl. Pour the boiling water over the mushrooms; let sit until softened, about 15 minutes. Drain and coarsely chop. Reaserve the soaking liquid.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a nonstick dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add portobello mushrooms, leek, celery, and carrot. Cook stirring often, until the veggies become very tender, 8-10 minutes. Add broth, barley, and soaked mushrooms with their reserved soaking liquid; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, until the barley is tender 50-60 minutes. Stir in the dill.

Ladle soup into each serving bowl. Top with 1 Tbs yogurt.

I had to get a picture with Bobby Deen. I love his show and am a big Paula Deen fan!!

{Mexican Cookies}

My daughters class was doing a “Christmas around the World” themed class party. I made these cookies and the kids really liked them. They are easy to make too.

2 sticks of butter, softened
3/4 tsp salt (omit if using salted butter)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbs milk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking powdered
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

Coating:
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 oz semisweet chocolate, grated
1/4 tsp cinnamon

  1. In a large mixing bowl using an electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Beat in the salt, powdered sugar, milk, vanilla and cinnamon, scraping the sides of the bowl often, until mixture is smooth. Beat in the baking powder. When it’s thoroughly mixed in, add the flour and stir by hand until it’s well mixed. The batter should be soft, yet sturdy enough to shape.
  2. With a level tablespoon, scoop up the dough and shape into 24 balls. Place the balls on a plate and chill for 2 hours or if baking ahead, chill until very firm, then put in a heavy duty zipper bag and freeze.
  3. When ready to bake, bring the dough balls to room temperature.
  4. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  5. Arrange the dough balls, spacing about 2 1/2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets, then press the balls into 2 inch rounds. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
  6. Meanwhile, mix the sugar, chocolate and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  7. Remove warm cookies from baking sheets and let cool for about 3 minutes on a wire rack set over a sheet of foil. Spoon coating over the cookies, letting it fall down onto the foil. Scoop fallen coating off the foil and use it to coat the bottom of the cookies. Let cool completely before serving.
*To grate the chocolate, I used a cold bar of semisweet chocolate and a Microplane zester. 
Recipe Source: Cookie Madness 

{Garden Fresh Salsa}

I could live on this stuff and be totally content. This is my dads fresh salsa recipe that he makes during the summer with the fresh veggies from his garden. It’s the BEST and one of my favorite things about summer time

10 medium to large tomatoes
1 green bell pepper, chopped
3 whole jalapenos
1/2 yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup white sugar
4 whole cloves garlic
1 Tbs salt

Mix all ingredients in a food processor.

{Chicken Lime Tacos}

These got rave reviews from my family. They were very fresh with lots of yummy flavors. Make sure and top them with lots of additional toppings.

  • 1 1/2 Lbs. chicken, cubed
  • 1/4 c. red wine vinegar
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 4-5 green onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 Tbsp fresh cilantro
  • Flour or corn tortillas

  • OPTIONAL TOPPINGS:
  • Pico de gallo
  • cheese
  • onions
  • tomatoes
  • jalapeno
  • guacamole
  • cilantro
  • sour cream

  • Sauté chicken in a medium skillet in a little oil for a few minutes until chicken becomes white all around. Combine vinegar, lime juice, sugar, salt, pepper, green onion, garlic and cilantro and add to chicken. Simmer for an extra 10-20 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Add chicken to tortillas and top with lettuce, tomato, cheese, avocado, cilantro, salsa, sour cream, or any other taco topping you prefer.

Recipe Source: Favorite Family Recipes

{Cafe Rio’s Cilantro Lime Rice}

I LOVE cafe rio, I could seriously eat it every night. The other night I made this rice with these Honey Lime Enchiladas, and it was a meal made in heaven. So good!!!

4 Tbs butter
2 1/2 cups rice
4 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 tsp salt
Juice and zest of 4 small limes
4 Tbs chopped cilantro
1/2 tsp cumin

*You can cut this recipe in half if you don’t want to make as much.

In a large pan melt the butter and add the rice and cook for about 2 minutes. Add all the other ingredients and bring to a boil. Cover and cook on low for 20-25 minutes.