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Monday, September 29, 2014

Home-Style Meatloaf

yep, easy.  yep, yum.


1 1/2 pounds ground chuck
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 whole egg, beaten
1 cup Italian bread crumbs
1/2 of a yellow onion, minced
1/3 cup of Worcestershire Sauce
1/4 cup ketchup, plus more {1/3 cup} for brushing on top (I used a combo of ketchup and BBQ sauce for brushing on top.  See notes below.)
3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
pinch of red pepper flakes, optional


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Add all ingredients above to a large bowl and mix by hand until combined and well mixed. On a baking dish or (lightly coated with cooking spray) foil lined baking sheet, free form the meatloaf mixture into a loaf shape. You could also cover with plastic wrap and press the mixture into a more compact shape (remove plastic wrap before baking).
Bake for 20 minutes then remove and lightly brush with ketchup and bake for another 20 minutes.
Remove again and brush with more ketchup (and BBQ sauce if using).
Finish baking for an additional 20 minutes, then remove and let rest for ten minutes. (I brushed with the last I had of my BBQ/ketchup mixture.)
Slice and serve.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Healthy Turkey and Veggie Chili

  • 1½ teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen sweet corn
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped small
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped small
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups water
  • 1½ teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1½ tablespoons chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ¾ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (Start with less if you're nervous about heat level.)
  • ½- ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons reduced sodium soy sauce or gluten-free tamari

  1. Heat the oil in a large heavy bottom pot over medium heat.
  2. Add the turkey and cook until browned, stirring to break it up as it cooks.
  3. Add the onion, red bell pepper, and garlic, and cook for a few minutes, stirring, until tender.
  4. Mix in canned tomatoes, beans, corn, spices, and soy sauce. Add the water and stir to combine.
  5. Bring the chili to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer partially covered for about 30 minutes until the chili thickens. (*Try simmering with the lid on, try with the lid completely off; if you're finding that your chili isn't thickening to your desire, try removing the lid completely.) (Mine was just fine with lid partially on.)
  6. Serve with freshly baked corn bread. (Here's a link to her corn bread recipe.)


Thursday, September 4, 2014

Lemon Blueberry Bread


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups blueberries (12 oz)
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest
  • ½ cup plain yogurt, regular or lowfat


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together your flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the blueberries and lemon zest and toss to combine.
  3. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the yogurt then the dry ingredients, mixing only until incorporated and being careful not to crush the blueberries.
  4. Scoop batter into your prepared loaf pan and bake for 1 hour 10 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes before inverting gently onto a plate.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Creamy Tomato Tortellini Soup

ok, real easy, real yummy.

2 tablespoons EVOO
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2-3 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes, chopped (You can use jarred or dry.  Just be sure to drain as much of the excess oil off of the jarred ones as possible.)
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
2 (10 3/4 oz.) cans of condensed tomato soup
2 cups half and half
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 (9 oz.) package cheese-filled tortellini
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, for garnish

1. Saute garlic with the olive oil and sun dried tomatoes, onion powder, and Italian seasoning in a large stock pot over medium heat.

2. Add tomato soup, half and half, chicken (vegetable) stock, and salt and pepper, and bring to a simmer. (Following this step, I threw the mixture into my Vitamix to puree all of the garlic and sun-dried tomatoes.  This created a more creamy texture and is totally optional.)

3. Once simmering, drop tortellini into the soup.

4. Cook according to the package directions. (about 7-9 minutes)

5. Once tortellini are cooked, serve topped with Parmesan cheese.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Ina Garten's Lemon Chicken Breasts

  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic (9 cloves)
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest (about 2 lemons)
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 boneless chicken breasts, skin on (6 to 8 ounces each)
  • 1 lemon, cut into 8 wedges
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  2. Warm the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, add the garlic, and cook for just one minute — but don't allow the garlic to turn brown. Off the heat, add the white wine, lemon zest, lemon juice, oregano, thyme, and 1 teaspoon salt, and pour into a 9-by-12-inch baking dish.
  3. Pat the chicken breasts dry and place them skin side up over the sauce. Brush the chicken breasts with olive oil and sprinkle them liberally with salt and pepper. Cut the lemon in eight wedges and tuck it among the pieces of chicken.
  4. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken breasts, until the chicken is done and the skin is lightly browned. If the chicken isn't browned enough, put it under the broiler for two minutes. Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and serve hot with the pan juices.

*For a step by step video, watch my girl, Ina, show you exactly how to make it!  

*Ina Garten recipe, Food Network

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Ginger Carrot Soup

If I haven't convinced you to get a Vitamix yet, 
get one for this soup!


  • 1 tablespoon EVOO
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • 1 16 oz. bag of baby carrots
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 32 oz. box low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth or stock
  • (*I added 1 tablespoon half and half)
1. In a medium saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the onion and sauté for 4 to 5 minutes, until translucent.
2. Add the carrots, ginger, salt, and broth and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until the carrots are fork-tender.
3. Puree the soup in a blender (VITAMIX!!!) or with a hand blender until creamy and smooth.   Add salt to taste if necessary.
4. Serve, topped with a dollop of yogurt, sour cream, or crème fraîche if desired.

*Weelicious Cookbook

Monday, August 11, 2014

Maggie's Find: Bachelorette Party Taco Dip

  • 1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened (*or half greek yogurt/half cream cheese)
  • 1 (16 oz.) container sour cream
  • 1 (1.25 oz.) package taco seasoning mix
  • 1 cup chunky mild salsa
  • 1 cup shredded cheese
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 (2.25 oz.) can sliced black olives, drained (optional)
  • 1 avocado, diced (optional)

  1. In a medium-sized bowl, combine cream cheese, sour cream, and taco seasoning. Stir in chunky salsa to taco dip mixture; mix until combined.
  2. Add shredded cheese and black olives to taco dip mixture. Chop up two large tomatoes, and add tomatoes to taco dip mixture and stir until just combined.
  3. Scoop taco dip into serving bowl and top with additional shredded cheese, black olives, avocado, and tomatoes.
  4. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. Enjoy!