Recipe: Cheesy Beef Skillet Dinner

Despite the repetitive menu requests from my kids – we can’t have quesadillas for dinner every day, so I’ve tried another cheesy, delicious, Cook With Campbell’s recipe that incorporates some of my children’s favourite ingredients: meat, cheese, and macaroni noodles -> the Cheesy Beef Skillet Dinner.

As all Campbell’s recipes, this one was super easy to make – requiring only one pot (for the noodles), and one pan/skillet (for everything else). This was the perfect meal for a busy evening packed with extracurricular activities (post-soccer game dinner perfection) – and super tasty too!

Cook With Campbell

Ingredients: 

1 tbsp (15 mL) canola oil
1 lb (454 g) lean ground beef
1 tbsp (15 mL) steak spice
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
2 cups (500 mL) button mushrooms, sliced
1 can (796 mL) tomatoes, diced
1 can (284 mL) CAMPBELL’S® Low Fat Cream of Mushroom Soup
1 tbsp (15 mL) Dijon mustard
2 cups (500 mL) macaroni, cooked to al dente and drained
3 cups (750 mL) aged Cheddar cheese, shredded and divided
1/4 cup (60 mL) green onion, chopped

Directions:

1) Heat oil in a large, nonstick skillet set over medium-high heat. Crumble in ground beef; season with steak spice. Cook, breaking up into small pieces, for 5 to 7 minutes or until browned. Add onion, green pepper and mushrooms. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until vegetables are tender-crisp.

2) Stir in tomatoes, soup and mustard. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for 5 minutes or until slightly thickened. Stir in cooked macaroni and 1 cup (250 mL) cheese until well combined.

3) Sprinkle the top with remaining cheese and green onion. Cover and remove from heat. Let stand for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

vscocam-photo-1

Bee’s Take:

1) I like my cheese a little brown and crispy. If you do too, I would suggest popping the finished skillet meal into the oven for a few minutes under the broiler.

2) For picky eaters who aren’t crazy about mushrooms, I think this dinner would be equally as delicious using Campbell’s Cream of Broccoli Soup, and perhaps replacing the mushrooms with fresh broccoli.

3) The leftovers made the most delicious lunch the next day, perfect for a work-from-home mom like me. I may have added some extra melted cheese on top.

4) Don’t forget to cook the macaroni noodles first so they’re all ready to add at the end!

*****

Disclosure: I am part of the Campbell Company of Canada Ambassador program with Mom Central Canada and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Recipe: Cheesy Chicken Quesadillas

My kids are very picky eaters. So picky, that if the daily dinner menu were up to them, we would be rotating between 3 dinner favourites: my homemade mac n’ cheese, my famous chicken broccoli bake, and my super-simple cheese quesadillas. Are you seeing a common theme here? Cheese. And bread.

And while I can’t blame them for loving two of my most favourite food groups, the mom in me feels as though they need more substance (and healthier ingredients) in their meals. Cue my pick for this month’s Cook With Campbell’s easy & delicious recipe: Cheesy Chicken Quesadillas.

(Spoiler Alert: despite the misleading title, vegetables are aplenty in this one)

Quesadillas

 Ingredients:

1 tbsp (15 mL)    canola oil
1/2    red onion, sliced
1    red pepper, sliced
1    green pepper, sliced
1 tsp (5 mL)    chili powder
1 can (284 mL)    Campbell’s® Cheddar Cheese Soup
3/4 cup (185 mL)    Pace® salsa, plus additional for serving
3 cups (750 mL)    shredded cooked chicken
1/4 cup (60 mL)    chopped green onion
4    large flour tortillas
1/4 cup (60 mL)    sour cream

Quesadillas 

Directions:

1) Heat oil in a large, nonstick skillet set over medium heat. Add onion, red pepper, green pepper and chili powder. Cook for 5 minutes or until softened. Reduce to medium-low heat. Stir in soup and salsa.

2) Cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until peppers are tender-crisp. Stir in chicken. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until heated through; cool for 10 minutes. Stir in green onion.

3) Spread a quarter of the chicken filling over half of a tortilla; fold tortilla over to enclose filling. Repeat with remaining chicken filling and tortillas.

4) Set a clean skillet over medium heat; coat with nonstick cooking spray. Toast quesadilla, in batches, for 3 minutes per side or until golden brown. Cut each quesadilla into wedges. Serve with additional salsa and sour cream.

Bee’s Take:

1) Don’t forget to cook the chicken first! I was so wrapped up in the oozy gooey deliciousness of the vegetable/sauce mix, that I almost forgot to cook up some chicken to complete this delicious meal.

2) I found it to be a bit tricky to eat these yummy quesadillas without losing some of the contents – I suggest wrapping the delicious filling like a burrito to keep it all tucked in.

3) Next time I’ll add a little hot sauce to my portion to spice things up a bit!

*****

Disclosure: I am part of the Campbell Company of Canada Ambassador program with Mom Central Canada and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Recipe: Pan Braised Brussels Sprouts

It happens to me every year: I’m invited to a Christmas dinner, and when I ask what I should bring, I’m cursed with the same response: a veggie dish. In my opinion, the veggie dishes are just showy sides – included in the meal only “for looks”. For many (like me), it’s all about the turkey, cranberry sauce and stuffing. So being tasked with a side dish like Brussels sprouts can be a challenge to say the least.

I was a little hesitant to try this dish because of the obvious unpopularity of the main ingredient – Brussels sprouts. But when I made this super simple, bacon-sprinkled delight, I was very pleasantly surprised (I even went back for seconds!).

Brussels Sprouts

Pan Braised Brussels Srouts

Ingredients:

5 slices bacon, cut into small pieces
1 can (284 mL/ 10 oz) CAMPBELL’S® Condensed Low Fat Cream of Chicken Soup
1 tbsp (15 mL) lemon juice
1 tsp (5 mL) mustard powder
¼ tsp (1 mL) ground black pepper
1 lb (500 g) Brussels sprouts, trimmed and finely sliced (about 4 cups/1 L)
1 tbsp (15 mL) chopped fresh sage leaves

 

Brussels Sprouts

Directions:

1)  Cut bacon into bite-sized pieces and cook until crisp in large non-stick skillet at medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium.

2)  Drain excess fat, leaving about 2 tablespoons (30 mL) in skillet.

3)  Stir in soup, lemon juice, mustard powder and pepper. Heat mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 minute.

4) Add Brussels sprouts and sage and stir well. Cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

I chose to add a bit more bacon (because, BACON!), and served this delicious side dish with Italian sausages and sticky rice. This would of course also complement a turkey or ham dinner quite nicely! Give it a try and let me know what you think!

*****

Disclosure: I am part of the Campbell Company of Canada Ambassador program with Mom Central Canada and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Recipe: Tex Mex Chicken & Rice Bake

One of our favourite family meals is made using Campbell’s soup as a main ingredient, so when I was asked to become a Campbell’s Canada Ambassador, I couldn’t have been more thrilled! I find it challenging to come up with new, healthy, easy-to-make dinner ideas for my picky family, so I tend to make the same meals week after week. My role as a Campbell’s Ambassador is to try some new recipes that are simple to make and easy to love, and I can’t wait to add some new ideas to my meal-planning roster!

While taco nights are fun and easy, my family is getting tired of the monotony of the predictable dinner routine, so I thought I’d mix it up a bit and try this ridiculously easy to make Tex Mex Chicken & Rice Bake recipe (which can be found among a slew of tasty meal ideas on the Cook with Campbell’s website).

This recipe is SO easy to make, you only need ONE dish, and it takes only THREE steps!

 

Recipe

TEX MEX CHICKEN & RICE BAKE

Ingredients:

1 can (10 oz/284 mL) CAMPBELL’S® Condensed Low Fat Cream of Chicken Soup
1 soup can 1% milk
3/4 (175 mL) cup uncooked regular long-grain white rice
1 1/2 tsp (7mL) chili powder
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) mixture of red and green pepper strips, chopped onion
1/2 cup (125 mL) frozen corn
4 (about 1 lb/500 g) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1/2 cup (125 mL) shredded Tex Mex cheese (or Cheddar and Monterey Jack mixture)

 

Recipe

Directions:

1) Mix soup, milk, rice, and chili powder in a shallow baking dish. Spread vegetables evenly on top.

2) Top with chicken. Spread Tex Mex cheese on top, and additional chill powder (if desired). Cover.

3) Bake in oven at 400F (200C) until chicken is cooked through and rice is tender – approximately 45 minutes*. Remove cover and broil until cheese is golden and bubbly – approximately 3 minutes. Remove chicken and stir rice before serving.

* NOTE: I found that an additional 15-20 minutes in the oven makes the rice nice and tender. Time will vary depending on your oven.

***

This recipe was quick to make, simple to follow, and delicious! I plan to heat up the leftovers and wrap them in quesadillas with some guacamole, sour cream and hot sauce for a twist on this Mexican delight. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Recipe

***

Disclosure: I am part of the Campbell Company of Canada Ambassador program with Mom Central Canada and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Recipe: Blueberry Turkey Burgers

Last month I had created a bucket list of 20 things to do with my kids – ideas to hopefully keep us busy during the Summer months (aka: how to keep my sanity on the weekdays that I would be spending alone with my 3 kids). On SundayI decided to check off the “test our tastebuds” item on my bucket list by trying a new recipe: blueberry turkey burgers, and boy were they delicious!

Last weekend, after my daughter and I had enjoyed a cooking class with our friends from the BC Blueberry Council, I was gifted with a few unique blueberry recipe cards to try with my family. In the past I had only used blueberries for sweet recipes – blueberry muffins, pies and pancakes, or even just sprinkled on top of waffles, ice cream or yogurt. The recipe cards I had received were for savoury foods, meals I had never thought to combine with the sweetness of blueberries. A rep from the BC Blueberry Council suggested that I try the blueberry turkey burgers (a blueberry recipe favourite), and I hesitantly agreed to give it a try.

They were absolutely delicious, and healthy too! Here’s the recipe so you can enjoy this savoury treat with your family as well.

blueberry turkey burgers

Blueberry Turkey Burgers

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb lean ground turkey
  • 3/4 cup BC Blueberries (fresh or frozen, roughly chopped)
  • 1/4 cup green onion (chopped)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tbsp. whole grain mustard
  • 1 tbsp. fresh parsley (chopped, or 2 tsp. dry)
  • 2 tsp. fresh thyme (chopped, or 1 tsp. dry)
  • 1 tsp. garlic (finely minced or dry)
  • 1 tsp. paprika (mild or hot)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 3 tbsp. barbeque sauce
  • 2 tsp. vegetable oil
  • 4 burger buns

 

blueberry turkey burgers

Yields: 4 burgers

Cook + Prep Time: 30 minutes

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat heavy bottom pan or barbeque to 350F/175C.
  2. In a bowl, mix all the burger ingredients and form 4 – 3/4 inch thick patties. Keep refrigerated until ready to cook.
  3. Grease the grill with an oiled paper towel, or heat the oil in a pan.
  4. Place patties on pre-heated grill (or in pan), and sear on medium-high heat, cooking for approximately 5-7 minutes until browned. Flip over, reduce heat to medium-low and finish cooking for another 5-7 minutes until internal temperature reaches 165F/75C.
  5. Brush with barbeque sauce and serve on buns with desired condiments.

blueberry turkey burgers

blueberry turkey burgers

 For more delicious blueberry recipes, check out the BC Blueberry Council website.

 

 

Recipe: Glory Bowl

I’m a devoted carnivore who primarily survives on meat, cheese and bread, so many of my friends will be shocked to learn that this recipe post is a healthy dish full of ingredients fit for any vivacious vegetarian.

There are two words that are taboo for a passionate meat tooth like myself: beets, and tofu. Just the utterance of those two words makes me cringe, desperate to rush to the closest burger joint to wash my mouth out with a juicy beef burger. But today my friends, I not only cooked with these two ingredients, but (gasp!) I liked eating them.

Being a beet-chopping virgin, I had no idea that the red root vegetable was so vibrantly rouge. It took 3 washings to get the beet stain off my hands, and I considered bailing on the recipe for that reason alone. But I cooked on because A. I’m a starving pregosaurus, and B. red hands aside, the recipe was delicious when I had tried it once before, and it seemed simple.

And now, without further adieu, I present to you a recipe which I poached off the fabulous Sydney Badger of Nourish Mom (who borrowed and tweaked the recipe from Whitewater Resort).

Glory Bowl

Ingredients:

The Bowl

  • 8 cups cooked brown rice
  • 2 cups beets (grated)
  • 2 cups carrots (grated)
  • 2 cups almonds (toasted)
  • 2 cups spinach leaves
  • 2 cups tofu (cubed)
  • 2 cups sprouts

The Dressing

  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup tamari or soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 cloves of garlic (crushed)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tblsp tahini paste

Preparation

  • prepare brown rice and set aside
  • sauté tofu cubes
  • blend sauce (yeast flakes, water, tamari/soy sauce, vinegar, tahini, crushed garlic – add oil in a steady stream as you blend)
  • assemble ingredients layered in a large bowl (rice on bottom)

Tips & Optional Add-Ons

  • Instead of toasted almonds I used tamari almonds (found in the bulk section at my grocery store)
  • Be sure to use extra-firm tofu as it’s easier to sauté
  • If you can’t stomach the idea of using tofu, chicken is a great alternative
  • Sydney Badger has recently tried it with edamame beans and marinated mushrooms, yum!

Glory Bowl

I used the leftovers to make a smaller side salad version of this recipe to accompany a grilled steak dinner tonight and it was perfection (once a meat lover, always a meat lover).

I also plan on preparing this for my mother in law who is both diabetic and a vegetarian, I hope she likes it!

Linking up with my friends over at:

Recipe: Cheese-Stuffed Meatloaf Minis

Meat and cheese are my two favourite foods. So what could satisfy my meat tooth more than meat muffins oozing with ooey gooey cheese? Lathered in a delicious tomato-basil sauce, and topped with freshly-grated parmesan cheese, these delicious meatloaf minis make the perfect comfort food for a chilly Fall evening – and the kids love them too!

Cheese-Stuffed Meatloaf Minis

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup panko crumbs
  • 1 cup Antonella’s tomato-basil sauce
  • 4 sticks mozzarella string cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 lbs. extra lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions

Serves: 4 (plus leftovers)

Cook + prep time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

 Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Cut string cheese into 1/2 inch pieces and set aside.
  3. Pour panko crumbs into a deep mixing bowl, and add Antonella’s tomato-basil sauce. Mix.
  4. Add egg, green onion, and beef to bread crumb/sauce mix.
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Lightly grease muffin tin.
  7. Roll meat mixture into balls and add to muffin tin cups (fill to top).
  8. Push one cheese piece into the centre of each meat muffin and pinch meat to seal the top.
  9. Cook for 30 minutes (note: cooking time may vary based on oven, make sure your meatloaves are cooked through thoroughly).
  10. Serve topped with warmed Antonella’s tomato-basil sauce, and freshly-grated parmesan.

Baking

Finished

Meatloaf Minis

These would  be delicious with mashed potatoes, but due to my house full of picky little eaters, I served my mini meatloaves with fries and grilled carrots, garlic and onions. Easy to make and kid-approved!

Freeze the extras for portion-sized leftovers, and enjoy these yummy minis again and again!

Recipe: Stuffed Pork Chops

As a mom to two very picky eaters, I often run out of dinner ideas. My kids won’t eat anything with potatoes, or tomatoes, or seafood, or red peppers…the list goes on and on. And while they’d be perfectly happy to have my chicken broccoli bake every night of the week, that’s just simply not happening in this bee’s hive.

I try to make balanced meals that we can enjoy without the take another bite’s or mommy this is gross’s, so unfortunately, my diverse palate has to take a back seat, and simple, easy-to-make recipes are on the menu on a daily basis.

To mix things up a bit, I like to stuff my meats with various ingredients – this is both a great way to change up the taste, and to sometimes hide those not-so-desired foods from the kids.

Tired of chicken and steak every night? Why not try my prosciutto and provolone stuffed pork chops.

Prosciutto & Provolone Stuffed Pork Chops

Ingredients:

  • 6 boneless, skinless pork loin chops
  • 6 thick slices of prosciutto
  • 6 thick slices of provolone cheese
  • Thick teriyaki sauce
  • Montreal chicken seasoning

Serves: 4

Prep + cooking time: 30 minutes

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  2. Butterfly pork loin chops, and place on aluminum foil lined baking sheet.
  3. Place sliced prosciutto and sliced provolone in the centre of each butterflied pork chop, and fold in half, ensuring that all the cheese is tucked in.
  4. Drizzle thick teriyaki sauce over the top of each folded pork chop, and sprinkle sparingly with Montreal chicken seasoning. Do this on both sides for extra flavour.
  5. Place in oven and bake for 20-25 minutes.

Recipe: Stuffed Pork Chops

Tonight, I served my stuffed pork chops with sprouted rice and quinoa (topped with butter, coarse salt and pepper, and grated parmesan), asparagus, and warm rosemary and olive oil bread, but this dish is a great fit for almost any side.

Recipe: Stuffed Pork Chops

DEE-LISH. And as always, kid-approved.

Linked up with a monthly recipe swap – Why Fake It? Just Make It!

Recipe: Kale Chips

I know this recipe is an easy one – like posting directions on how to make ice cubes – but they were just so tasty, I had to share.

Confession: I have been stubbornly refusing to try kale, and anything to do with kale. I’ve been hearing so much about it lately, that I wanted to be a “rebel” and avoid the leafy fad “to be different”. I also felt as though I’d be betraying my meat tooth by succumbing to a veggie fad. But my kids have turned me.

When my  daughter and I went to pick up my boy from daycare the other day, he ran towards me with a giant leaf in his hand, and was munching on it like a starving rabbit. “Ohh what do you have there?” I asked him, giving a sideways glance to his daycare teacher with disbelief in my eyes. “It’s broccoli lettuce!” he announced, and took another chomp. I smiled a crooked smile and watched as my girl begged for a leaf of her own. “It’s kale” the teacher mouthed to me from across the way, worried that if the kids overheard the ‘k’ word, they’d drop their leaves and run.

As I drove home, the kids went on and on about how kale was the best thing they had ever eaten. I rolled my eyes, and promised that I’d buy some for them.

Tonight I found a bunch of kale in the fridge, and thought I would try out this “kale chip” fad that people won’t stop talking about. And while I thought I’d end up with a pile of soggy moosh or burnt flakes, they turned out just right, and were easy peasy to make.

So in case you’re tempted to jump on the kale train like I have, try this! I promise you (and your kids) will love them.

I used 3 ingredients (beside of course, a bunch of kale leaves).

Kale Chips - Ingredients

STEP 1: I tore up the kale leaves into bite-sized pieces, and tossed them in a bowl with about a teaspoon of olive oil.

STEP 2: I spread them out on a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil, and sprinkled the leaves with coarse sea salt, and a little bit of garlic powder.

STEP 3: I baked them in the oven at 350F for 8 minutes.

And voila! Perfectly crispy kale chips:

Kale Chips

They came out nice and crispy, and were so delicious, I almost ate them all without sharing!

Next was to test them on my little picky eaters. I placed a pile of kale chips on their plates, next to some sliced raw carrots and their favourite pasta. I crossed my fingers and placed their meals in front of them.

And you know what? They wolfed down the kale chips FIRST, and so quickly, I was barely able to snap this pic:

Kale Chips - Kid-Friendly

Two thumbs up from my little munchkins, and an extra two from this mama too!

What The Eff Should I Make For Dinner?

There are two things that I dread each and every day as a busy mommy of two:

1) Making lunches.
2) Trying to decide what the eff to make for dinner.

For you chef extraordinaires, there’s an awesome site with a similar title to my blog post that gives you some great dinner ideas (you can check it out here: What The F*&# Should I Make For Dinner). But if you’re anything like me, you won’t have the time, ingredients, or energy to make things like “Herbes de Provence Roasted Chicken with Lemon and Garlic Fennel-Stewed Lentils” every night. Sounds delish, but my kids would gag and dry heave if I even said that dinner suggestion to them.

If you’re looking for a quick, simple meal using basic ingredients that you’ll probably already have in your cupboard, try this one on for size! I can’t get enough of this dinner, and my kids love it too!

Chicken Broccoli Bake
Ingredients:
2-3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 heads of broccoli
2 cups of grated mild cheddar cheese
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup of mayonnaise
1/4 cup 2% milk
2 tbsp curry powder

Serves: 4.

Cooking time (including prep): Approx 20 minutes.

Directions:

1) Preheat oven to 410 F.

2) In a pot or rice cooker, cook 2 cups of Basmati rice.

3) Chop up the broccoli into bite-sized pieces.

4) Cut up chicken breasts into small pieces.

5) Cook the chicken in a frying pan with a little butter until light brown on both sides.
6) Add the broccoli to the chicken in the frying pan, and cover it with a lid to steam until the broccoli is tender and bright green (approx 2-3 minutes).
7) In a mixing bowl, combine cream of chicken soup, mayonnaise, curry powder, and milk. Mix with a hand mixer or whisk until creamy.
8) Pour chicken and broccoli into a small casserole dish, and pour the creamy sauce evenly on top.
9) Sprinkle grated cheese evenly on top, place in the oven.
10) Bake until cheese is melted and light brown.
11) Serve on rice and enjoy!
Thumbs up from some very picky food critics!
There you go, easy peasy!
Try it out and let me know what you think 🙂