Recipe Box

I love to be in the kitchen. And my husband loves the delicious food I make. It's true, the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.

I enjoy making new things and trying to come up with healthy and cheap meals. I'd love to share with you some of my recipes.

Easy Baked Tortilla Nachos
A childhood favorite of mine. An easy thing for toddlers and kids to help with.
2 tortilla shells
1 1/2 cups shredded cheese (mild cheddar)
 Optional: chili powder & cumin or taco seasoning, jalapenos, sour cream
Spray baking dish with non-stick spray or use a silicone liner.
Tear tortillas into chip size pieces and spread on the pan.
Sprinkle on the cheese and spices and jalapenos(if using).
Bake in a 400 degree oven for 10-12 minutes. 
Broil on low for the last few minutes if desired.
Top with sour cream if you want.
Enjoy while hot!

Crescent Cinnamon Rolls
Made these easy and delicious cinnamon rolls yesterday.
I buy the crescent rolls on sale for $1(Usually at Aldi)
They're quick, and there's very little clean-up.

1 tube crescent rolls
1/2 Tb butter
Cinnamon sugar
2 Tb tub butter
3 Tb brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tb milk
1/2 c powdered sugar

*I did not measure anything- these amounts are approximate!*

 Melt butter and wipe around bottom and edges of muffin pan.
*Use the bowl you melt the butter in to make the brown sugar mix, and the icing- less dishes!
 Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

 Divide crescent rolls into four rectangles.
Here's a tip- microwave rolls for 10 seconds to make them more pliable.
Pinch together seams.
Spread with butter.
Divide brown sugar, cinnamon, & vanilla mixture evenly over rolls.

 Roll up starting with short end.
Cut into thirds and place one roll into each muffin tin.
 Bake 12-14 minutes.
Don't overbake them!

 Mix milk and powdered sugar.
Drizzle over rolls.

Roasted Asparagus Wraps
 Vegan Grilled Asparagus Wraps (Serves 4)
For the Vegan version please see their website.
Roasted Asparagus Wraps
My Version (Serves 2)

1/2 c uncooked quinoa
Sea salt and ground pepper
1 Tb lemon juice
1 tsp dried thyme
2 Tb mayonaise
12 medium asparagus spears (I used frozen)
1/4 vidalia onion, sliced into 1/2 inch rounds
1 Tb exra-virgin olive oil
2 tortillas
1/2 c spinach

1. Heat a large skillet. Add quinoa and toast until fragrant, stirring occasionally. Add 1 cup water and stir. Bring to a boil. Cover, and lower heat to a simmer until quinoa is tender and quinoa filaments are visible. Turn off heat, and drain quinoa, if necessary. Stir in lemon juice, mayo, and thyme. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover with lid to keep warm.
2.  Preheat oven to 375. Line cookie sheet with foil. Place asparagus and onion on foil and spray or drizzle with oil. Roast 10 minutes or until onions have softened.
3. Spread 1/2 of the quinoa over a tortilla. Place some onions and 6 asparagus spears on the quinoa. Top with spinach. Roll each sandwich tightly and cut in half, using wooden skewers or toothpicks to hold together, if needed.

Broccoli Potato Soup
4 medium Russet potatoes
1 Tb Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 stalk celery, sliced thin
1 can chicken broth
1/2 can-full milk
1/2 can-full water
1 Tb onion flakes
2 tsp jarred garlic in oil
1 tsp chives 
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper 
dash cayenne pepper
3/4 c. chopped broccoli
1 c Cheddar/Monterrey Jack cheese blend 

In large pot drizzle some olive oil. Heat to med high, add onion flakes, celery and garlic. Simmer a few minutes to soften celery. Add broth, use an immersion blender to blend up celery. Add milk and water(I didn't measure. Add less at first b/c you can always add more)and add chives, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Bring to a boil. Add peeled and chopped potatoes. (I left some skin on b/c I like it) Boil a few minutes then turn to med-low. Cover and simmer until potatoes soften. Turn heat off and remove from burner, use immersion blender to blend until as chunky, or smooth as you want. Return to burner, add in broccoli(if desired) and cover with lid. Let sit a few minutes then stir in cheese until melted. Serve and enjoy! Also good with croutons on top!
Healthy Granola Bars
Recipe from my friend Courtney L.
Dry ingredients:
2 cups oats (not quick oats)
3/4 cup wheat germ
3/4 cup rice krispees(optional)
3/4 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup peanuts, chopped
1 cup raisins, chocolate chips, or dried fruit (or all of the above)

Wet ingredients:
1/4 cup butter or margarine
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup honey
2 tsp. vanilla or almond extract
1/2 tsp. salt

1. Put first 5 dry ingredients into glass bowl (oven safe). Toast in oven 10-12 minutes 350˚. Stir every 3-4 minutes until lightly toasted (you can tell by the smell when it's toasted). Remove from oven and add last dry ingredient(s).

2. While toasting mixture, melt butter in a large skillet. Add sugar and honey (now is when you would use peanut butter instead of honey or with less honey). Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and stir until mixture stops foaming (mine never stopped but it was foaming less) and begins to turn clear amber. Do not cook mixture for more than 10 minutes or it will taste scorched (the longer it cooks the harder the bar). Remove from heat and add extract and salt.

3. Pour syrup over dry ingredients and stir until well mixed. Turn out onto wax paper (i lined my 9x13 pan with wax paper, dumped the mixture in, then i cover it with wax paper, and pressed into the pan). Cool then cut (wait 20 minutes or less to cut. The bars were really greasy until they had set up overnight.)

I make this smoothie every morning that I can for my husband. He loves them! He drinks the big glass as breakfast, and I drink the small glass as a snack because I eat breakfast hours before him.

Strawberry Banana Smoothies
4 frozen strawberries
10 frozen raspberries, or 1 frozen strawberry
1 banana
3/4 c milk
1/2 scoop protein powder (I use Whey Chocolate)

Place all ingredients in blender and blend until a "tornado" spins in the center of the smoothie.
Pour smoothie into glass.
Add a little bit of cold water to the blender and blend remaining "stuck" smoothie.
Pour into small glass.

These are so easy, and so easy to personalize!

Bagel Thins Pizza
Bagel thins
Olive Oil
Pizza Sauce (We love Boboli)
Shredded cheese
Toppings: mushrooms, bacon bits, pepperoni, turkey pepperoni, pineapple...

Preheat oven to 375. Brush bagel thins with a little bit of olive oil. Place on cookie sheet and toast in oven about 5 min. (Just until slightly crisp) Remove from oven. If kids are topping their own, remove from hot cookie sheet. Top with pizza sauce, cheese and desired toppings. Heat in oven about 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.

 My husband created this one to cut back on carbs. He calls it a tuna canoe, or Tunanu for short.

Tuna salad and romaine lettuce

My tuna salad: 2 cans tuna, 2 hard boiled eggs, mayo w/ olive oil, pepper, onion flakes, sesame seeds, sweet relish... I pretty much mix whatever sounds good, and in amounts that make it the consistency that I want. Place in middle of lettuce and enjoy!

(Photo courtesy of Diana Stoppelmoor)
(I failed to photograph the cake I made...)
Pumpkin Spice Cake

1 box Spice cake mix
1 can pumpkin
1 container whipped cream cheese frosting

Heat oven for temperature listed on cake box for size pan you are using. (I use 13x9)

In medium bowl blend together pumpkin and spice cake mix. (Do NOT add anything listed on the box)

Pour into lightly greased pan and cook according to time on cake box.

Let cool completely and ice with frosting. (I then put pumpkin sprinkles all over the top!)

*All the ladies at my work love this cake! You can also make it as muffins or use light cool whip to frost to make it even healthier!

Crunchy Oven French Toast

This french toast is delicious! Orange juice gives it just a touch of citrus flavor and wheat germ gives is a wonderful crunch! I topped mine with pure maple syrup. SO GOOD!
1 Tbsp margarine
3 Tbsp wheat germ
1/4 c orange juice
1 Tbsp honey
3 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
6 slices bread
2 Tbsp wheat germ

Preheat oven to 450. Heat margarine in jelly roll pan, 15 1/2 x 10 1/2 x 1", in oven until melted; spread evenly in a pan. Sprinkle 3 Tbsp wheat germ evenly over margarine. Beat orange juice, honey, egg whites, vanilla extract, and cinnamon with hand beater until foamy. Dip bread into egg mixture; place in pan. Drizzle remaining egg mixture over bread. Sprinkle 2 Tbsp wheat germ evenly over bread. Bake about 10 minutes or until bottoms are golden brown. Turn and bake 6 to 8 minutes longer or until bottoms are golden brown.

 Photo from
Taco Seasoning
8 tsp dried minced onion
2 Tbsp chili powder
2 tsp cornstarch
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
In a small bowl, combine all ingredients. Store in an airtight container in a cool dry place for up to 1 year.
Yield: 6 tablespoons.  

"Fried" Onion Rings
These onion rings are as good as fried! And my healthier. They are nice and light and crispy. 

2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 c. seasoned dried bread crumbs
2 eggs 
2 large onions, sliced 1/4 inch thick and separated into double rings

1. Preheat oven to 400. Spray a nonstick baking sheet with nonstick spray. Mix the flour and salt on a small plate. Put the bread crumbs in a small bowl. Put the eggs(beat with fork) in a small bowl.
2. Coat each double onion ring on both sides with the flour mixture, shake off excess; dip into the eggs, then into the crumbs. (I swirled the onion ring around in the bowl, flipped it over and swirled some more.) Transfer to the baking sheet; spray with nonstick spray(don't overdo it).
3. Bake until browned on bottom, 10 minutes. Turn and bake until browned. about 5-10 minutes.

Broccoli & Cheese Stroganof

6 oz. Egg Noodles
8 oz. Frozen Chopped Broccoli (thawed)
10.5 oz can Cream of Chicken Soup
1 can full of Milk
1/4 cup Sour Cream
1/4 cup Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
1/4 cup Cheddar Cheese, shredded
2 Tbsp Parmesan Cheese

Boil the noodles until soft. Mix in the remaining ingredients. Heat until warm and top with more cheese. Enjoy!

Chicken Pasta Salad

Chicken Pasta Salad
1 lb penne pasta
1 c. celery
1 c. almonds- toasted, whole, or rough chopped (we like sliced)
1 c. dried cherries (bing are best) or dried cranberries
1 c. chicken (fresh grilled or canned white meat chicken in water)

Salad Dressing 

3/4 c. sugar
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dried onion flakes
1/3 c. cider vinegar
1 c. vegetable oil or light tasting olive oil
1 1/2 tsp poppy seeds

Cook pasta according to package. Drain. Rinse under cold water. Drain well again. Dump in large bowl. Add celery, almonds, cherries, chicken and 3/4 of dressing. Mix well. Salad is best after a few hours or over night in fridge. Just before serving add more dressing as the pasta will soak it up upon sitting.

Salad dressing option #1: Add sugar, mustard, salt, onion & vinegar in blender. Mix 5 seconds. While blender is still on slowly add oil until mixed well. Turn blender off. Add poppy seeds and mix in short bursts just until seeds are distributed.
Salad dressing option #2(what I do): Mix all salad dressing ingredients in a bowl. Add to pasta mixture.

Grilled Chicken & Onion Wrap

2 Grilled Chicken Breasts, cubed
1 white Onion
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Packed Brown Sugar
1 fresh Basil Leaf, diced
1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
1 tsp Lemon Juice
1/8 tsp Seasoning Salt
Dash of Pepper
Tortilla Shells
Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
Sour Cream

Saute the onions in the olive oil and brown sugar over medium high heat. Reduce heat to medium and add in chicken, salt, pepper, basil, balsamic dressing, and lemon juice until thoroughly heated. Sprinkle cheese on tortilla shell and microwave 30 seconds or until cheese is melted. Add the chicken and onions, top it off with lettuce and sour cream and enjoy!

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