Saturday, January 8, 2022

Rockin' Rice, Romaine, Ranch Salad with Shrimp



2 cups brown rice, cooked

12 ounces shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 lime

1 avocado, cubed

2 cups frozen corn, thawed

1/4 cup cilantro

1/2 cup green onion (optional)

1/2 cup bell pepper (optional)

1/2 cup Ranch dressing (chipotle Ranch is fantastic and adds some spice)

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon cumin

8 cups Romaine, shredded


1. Place shrimp in a medium pan over low heat.

2. Zest and juice limes. Sprinkle lime juice over shrimp and saute until shrimp is pink.

3. Combine brown rice, shrimp, avocado, corn, cilantro, green onion, and bell pepper in a large bowl.

4. Stir sugar, cumin, and lime zest into Ranch dressing.

5. Serve shrimp salad over bed of Romaine with Ranch dressing.

Friday, December 3, 2021

Easy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

My family loves these pumpkin chocolate chip muffins, and recently I thought matcha might be a nice added touch. You can't taste it, but it adds a healthy touch to the muffins.


1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
1 box of yellow cake mix
1 cup of water
1 T pumpkin pie spice
1 12-ounce package of semisweet chocolate chips (mini, regular, or chunks)

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put paper liners in a muffin tin. Makes 24 muffins.
  2. Place pumpkin puree and cake mix in a bowl, add one cup of water, and stir.
  3. Add the pumpkin pie spice and stir it in.
  4. Fold in chocolate chips and any other mix-ins you might want (matcha powder, wheat germ, chia seeds, coconut, etc.).
  5. Fill muffin liners 3/4 full.
  6. Bake 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a random muffin comes out clean.
Be sure to check out my The Tater Tot Casserole Cookbook: Over 45 Yummy Recipes!, now on sale in paperback for only $6.15 with free 2-day shipping for Amazon Prime members (free trial offer below)!

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Hawaiian Chicken with Rice and Broccoli

 My family loves this easy Hawaiian Chicken meal, and I love that I don't have to heat up the entire house to make it!


1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup vinegar

3 tsp. garlic powder

1 can pineapple chunks with juice

4-6 chicken breasts


Add contents to a slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4-6 hours.

Remove chicken and shred, then return to slow cooker.

Serve over rice with a side of broccoli.


Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans

 Try this easy meatloaf recipe with some mashed potatoes and green beans on the side for a meal that's sure to please!


2 large eggs

1 packet dry onion soup mix

3/4 cup water

1/3 cup ketchup (plus more for topping, if desired, or use BBQ sauce)

1 1/2 cups plain dry breadcrumbs

2 pounds lean ground beef


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix eggs, soup mix, water, and ketchup. Combine well.

Add breadcrumbs and ground beef and combine well.

Shape the mixture into a loaf and place in a shallow, foil-lined baking dish, loaf pan, or meatloaf pan.

Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until crisp on the outside and cooked all the way through. Top with more ketchup (or BBQ sauce), if desired.

Slice and serve.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

50+ Easy and Kid-Friendly Meal Options

I used to just stare into space when it came to dinner ideas. I never had what I needed on hand from night to night, and, as a result, often I'd just order pizza or Chinese food, which only ended up costing more and more as my family grew and got older (feeding four teens and an 11-year-old is no small feat!).

Friday, December 27, 2019

Taco Soup Recipe #Healthy #KidFriendly #CheapMeals

I like to make this as a new-baby meal (Roxi's was a little late but I did end up finally getting it to her ... or was it a pre-moving meal?). Anyway, she has requested the recipe so here you go!

Taco Soup

2 pounds ground beef, turkey or chopped chicken*
Chopped onion if you wish
1 can Rotel (more if you like spicy!)
4 T taco seasoning mix, or to taste
1 package Ranch dressing dry mix
2 cans undrained corn
3 cans undrained chili beans (or you can use dry pinto beans that you precooked)
3 8-ounce cans tomato sauce (or more to stretch the recipe)
Shredded cheddar cheese
Tortilla chips

1. Brown ground beef and onion and drain.

2. Stir the rest of the ingredients in a large pot or slow cooker. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer 15 minutes.

3. Serve with chips and cheese and sour cream and avocado!

*(I like to put my chicken or ground beef in the slow cooker then add all ingredients later)

If you liked this recipe, you'll love my book, The Tater Tot Casserole Cookbook! It's available in print and ebook versions (free if you are a Kindle Unlimited member so you can try it before you buy it in print!).

Monday, December 2, 2019

Chicago Deep Dish Pizza My Way

Real Chicago deep-dish pizza from Giordano's back in March 2017

My husband makes the time-intensive, complicated version of this that he found in Cook's Illustrated and it ROCKS, but recently it was just me and the girls and Sam for dinner, so I made it quicker. Here’s my version: