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Baked Eggs in Tomato Sauce… A Simple Version of Shakshuka

9 Feb

Shakshukra is an Israeli dish of eggs poached in tomato sauce. It is seasoned with garlic, paprika, and cumin and is topped with a creamy feta crumble. It can be served for breakfast, lunch, or even dinner. Sounds awesome, doesn’t it? Well, this morning, I was in the mood for shakshukra but didn’t really have the time to put it all together. I came up with this version to suffice my craving.

I wouldn’t dare compare this version to the amazing traditional version but it will certainly do in a pinch. We ate every last bite and wiped our bowls clean with a toasted piece of whole wheat bread. Yum! I will definitely make this again.

As you read the recipe, you’ll notice that I was totally improvising and using up leftovers from the fridge. You can omit the spaghetti sauce and add more tomatoes, of any variety, and spice it up with seasonings if you wanted. This was one of those quick thrown together type dishes that simply turned out perfect. Don’t you love it when that happens?


Baked Eggs in Tomato Sauce

Servings: 2
Time: 15 minutes
Level: Easy

1/2 can  roasted tomatoes, drained
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 tsp garlic, minced
1/4 c. spaghetti sauce
crushed red pepper flakes
Glug of red wine (optional but awesome)
2 large eggs
2 slices toasted bread
Parmesan cheese, grated

In a small skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic and crushed red pepper. Brown for about 1 minute. Add tomatoes and spaghetti sauce and bring to a boil. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Around the 8 or 9 minute mark, add the glug of wine if you choose. Gently crack each egg on top of tomato mixture.

Cover and let cook 5 minutes. Let the dish sit for 2-3 minutes before serving. Serve with toast and a touch of Parmesan cheese. Yum!


Pizza Grilled Cheese Dippers

15 Jan

I got a griddle for Christmas and I’m slightly obsessed. It takes 2 seconds to heat up and you can grill more than one thing at a time!

Today I wanted to make ooey gooey grilled cheese but I thought that might be boring so I added a twist. Pepperoni! Not only that but I cut the sandwiches into 4 equal slices. Perfect for dipping in pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce.  These would be perfect for kids… they love to dunk and dip their food. You could add traditional pizza topping veggies to the sandwich if you wanted. Yum!

Pizza Grilled Cheese Dippers

Time: 10 minutes, max
Level: Easy
Servings: 1

2 slices whole wheat bread
3-4 pepperonis, chopped
1 slice mozzarella or cheddar cheese
1 tsp. butter
1/4 c. pizza or spaghetti sauce

Top one slice of bread with pepperonis and cheese. Top with second slice of bread. Butter the outsides of the bread. Grill in a pan over medium heat or on a griddle at 350° for 1-2 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Cut grilled sandwich into 4 slices. Heat pizza or spaghetti sauce and serve along side sandwich slices. Yum!


Bacon and Cheese Frittata

16 Nov

Frittatas are quick and easy and delicious served for breakfast. lunch, and even dinner. By simply adjusting the add-ins, you can create a completely different taste experience that can fit almost any occasion. For this frittata, I used bacon, cheese, bell peppers, and onions, but I could have  just as easily used sausage, spinach, broccoli, or even ham. Just think quiche without a crust. Anything that sounds good in a quiche, would work here as well.

This dish is perfect to make for breakfast when having overnight company. It takes no time to whip up and tastes great even at room temperature!

I served our leftovers as the protein for a torta (See Chicken Torta for the recipe.) I put slices of the frittata on soft baguettes with sour cream, re-fried beans, and salsa. I also added slices of fresh avocado. Yum!

Bacon and Cheese Frittata

Servings: 6
Time: 35 minutes
Level: Easy

6 eggs
1 cup milk
2 tbsp. butter or margarine, melted
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 c. bell peppers and onions, frozen and chopped
5 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
1 c. shredded Cheddar cheese

In a bowl, beat eggs, milk, butter, salt, and pepper.

Pour into a greased 11×7 baking dish. Sprinkle with onions, bacon and cheese.

Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Yum!

– Adjust the add-ins. Add any type of meat, cheese, or veggies for a different twist!

Apple Pecan Chicken Salad

15 Sep

Holy yum! This salad tastes like fall. You could change up this salad a million different ways and it would still be delicious. Don’t have apples? Use pears. Don’t have pecans? Use walnuts.

This dinner salad was my favorite meal of the week. I love using Tyson Grilled and Ready chicken strips when I don’t feel like spending a ton of time in the kitchen and they worked out perfectly as the protein for this salad.

Apple Pecan Chicken Salad

Servings: 2
Time: 15 minutes
Level: Easy

1/3 c. pecans
2 c. spring mix lettuce
1/2 c. chicken, cooked and sliced or shredded
2 red delicious apples, chopped
red onion, sliced (optional)
1/4 c. mozzarella cheese

1/4 c. olive oil
1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp. spicy brown mustard
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Toast pecans in the oven until slightly browned. Be careful not to burn. Top lettuce with chicken, apples, onion, cheese, and toasted pecans. In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, mustard, and pepper. Pour over salad. Yum!

Sausage and Peppers Tortellini

4 Aug

This quick and easy dinner took no time to make. It was hearty and delicious and will definitely be making another appearance one day soon, especially since school is about to start.

Remember being a kid and coming home starving after school? Well, I’ve got news for you. It happens to the teachers, too! I’ll be adding this recipe to my quick, fast, and in a hurry arsenal to use on one of those “must have food… now!!!!!!” nights.

The sweet peppers in this recipe compliment the sweet spaghetti sauce and both pair perfectly with thick slices of smoked sausage and cheese filled pasta.

Sausage and Peppers Tortellini

Servings: 2
Time: 15-20 minutes
Level: Easy

1 c. tortellini, uncooked
1/2 c. tri-color  peppers and onions (frozen)
1/2 c. smoked turkey sausage, sliced (you can use beef)
1/2 c. spaghetti sauce (I used an Italian vegetable variety)

Cook pasta according to packaged directions. During the last 2 minutes of boiling, add peppers and onions to the pasta. Drain. Put pasta and peppers and onions back into the pan, add sausage, and top with spaghetti sauce. Simmer over medium-low heat until heated throughout. Yum!

– This is also very good cold the next day so keep your leftovers and pack them in your lunchbox!

Sloppy Joe BBQ Pizza

1 Aug





My mom used to make this pizza on busy Wednesday nights before church. Sometimes she would fold over the dough to make calzones. Super yum! Since you don’t use an entire can of sloppy joe sauce (you can use BBQ sauce instead) I like to freeze the leftovers flat in a small zip loc bag for an easy meal later on.

Sloppy Joe Pizza

Cook Time: 25 minutes
Level: Easy
Servings: 4-6

pizza dough
1/3 c. BBQ sauce or sloppy joe sauce (like Manwich)
1/2 c. ground beef, cooked
1/3 c. corn, drained and rinsed
1/3 c. peppers and onions, frozen
1/3 – 1/2 c. shredded cheese
jalapeños, chopped, to taste
red onions, sliced, to taste
ranch dressing, to taste

Pre-heat oven according to pizza dough directions. If using a dough that needs rolling out, roll out onto a greased cookie sheet, pizza pan, or baking stone. Bake dough for 8 minutes. Take it out of the oven and top it with BBQ sauce or sloppy joe sauce and next 6 ingredients.


Bake for and additional 4-6 minutes, or until dough is golden brown on the bottom and slightly browned on the edges. Take out of the oven and top with ranch dressing, if desired. Yum!

– Economically speaking, the bag of pizza dough mix is the way to go. You can get it for around 60¢ per bag and all you need to mix with is water. The tube of refrigerated dough and the fresh dough balls from the bakery section also work well in this recipe. You can even opt for a pre-made dough, like a Boboli crust.
-Rinsing vegetables from a can removes up to 25% of the added sodium. Try to buy the low sodium versions and rinse those as well.
– Don’t forget! You can add different ingredients to different parts of a pizza to help please everyone. Tonight, my half of the pizza was sans onions and double jalapeños!

Flat Out Pizza

21 Jul

No time? No problem! Flat Outs can be used for just about everything…from Berry Turkey Wraps to Pizza! As you probably already know, I love pizza. Any topping, any type.

I made these pizzas from start to finish in a little under 10 minutes and I used the toaster oven so I didn’t have to heat up the house with my oven. Perfect for a busy summer night!

Flat Out Pizza

Servings: 1
Time: 10 minutes
Level: Easy

1 piece of Flat Out bread
pizza sauce
fresh spinach leaves
peppers and onions, frozen
cheese, shredded
crushed red pepper

Top Flat Out with pizza sauce and layer, beginning with spinach, the remaining ingredients.

Toast in the toaster oven, or broil in the regular oven, until cheese is melted. Yum!

– Add any ingredients you want. Pizzas are a place to play around!

Peanut Butter Noodles

18 Jul

Peanut butter is creamy, nutty, and full of protein. Pair it with a few veggies and some whole wheat or buckwheat pasta and you’ve got yourself a delicious dish that can be served hot or cold. When I make Peanut Butter Noodles, I typically make double (because we LOVE it!) and serve it hot for dinner and cold for lunch.

This dish is very kid friendly, so grab up the munchkins and get cooking!


Peanut Butter Noodles

Servings: 2
Time: 15 minutes
Level: Easy

Wheat or buckwheat spaghetti noodles (enough for 2 servings)
1/4 c. all natural peanut butter
2 tbsp. seasoned rice wine vinegar
2 tbsp. low sodium soy sauce
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/8 tsp. curry powder
dash of cayenne
1 tsp. Sriracha (or more if you like it hot)
1/4 c. frozen green peas, thawed
1/4 c. carrots, sliced thin into bite sized pieces

Cook noodles according to packaged directions.  In a small bowl, whisk together the peanut butter, vinegar, soy sauce, ginger, curry, cayenne, and Sriracha. Toss drained noodles, peanut butter mixture, peas, and carrots together.


– Red onion is an optional addition.
– A fast way to thaw your peas is to put them in your colander before you strain your boiled noodles. The boiling water and hot pasta will almost instantly thaw the peas.

Berry Turkey Wraps

16 Jul

This recipe came to me while I was eating breakfast. Once of my favorite quick breakfasts is cream cheese and strawberry jam smeared on a Wasa cracker. Peanut butter and jam is also delicious but cream cheese always tastes like a treat! while I was eating, I had a thought. Jam is really yummy but wouldn’t real strawberry slices be even better? That got my brain on a roll and here we are… Berry Turkey Wraps.

The hubs loved them. He had just come in from mountain biking and was so excited to see a big cold wrap filled with delicious strawberries. I doubled up on his portion of turkey and all was well!

Berry Turkey Wrap

Time: 5 min.
Servings: 2
Level: Easy

2 tbsp. cream cheese, softened
1 tbsp. pecans, chopped finely
4 strawberries, sliced
Deli turkey
2 slices Gouda or Swiss cheese
red onion slices, optional
2 flour tortillas or Flat Outs

Mix cream cheese and pecans together. Spread onto tortilla or Flat Out. Top with strawberries, turkey, cheese, and lettuce.

Wrap everything up.


Carolina Salad

11 Jul

Ooh, the Carolina. My husband requests this salad at least once every two weeks, especially in the hot hot summer. Did you know that it hit over 100° today? Ridiculous. Factor in the sticky humidity that constantly blankets us and you’ve got yourself a sweat box. Good skin? Yes, the dewiest, most gorgeous skin.  But an enjoyable afternoon spent reading outside? I don’t think so.

Hot weather welcomes dinner salads and this one is legit. I made Pretzel and Pecan Encrusted Tilapia not too long ago and I made extra breading for a night just like tonight! The breading saves beautifully in an airtight container. For the recipe, click here.

Dinner salads are an excuse to clean out your produce drawer. Pretty much anything goes… and goes VERY well, so play around!!

Carolina Salad

Servings: 2
Time: 10 minutes
Level: Easy

1 chicken breast
1/3 – 1/2 c. pretzel and pecan breading
1 tbsp. coconut oil (canola or vegetable oil would also work… coconut is just better for you and pan fries wonderfully)
The following list is what I used in my salad tonight. You can use whatever you have!
spinach leaves
purple onion
grapes (strawberries or nectarines work well, too)
cheese, shredded
bacon, cooked and crumbled
salad dressing of your choice

Dry chicken breast and dice into bite sized pieces. In a shallow dish or plate, pour breading and press chicken pieces into the breading to coat.

In a pan over medium heat, melt coconut oil. Once melted and heated to temperature, add chicken and cook 1-2 minutes per side, or until no longer pink in the middle.

Fill large bowls or deep plates with lettuce and other ingredients. Top with chicken. Yum!

– Make your own croutons… Slice a piece of bread into cubes, top with a little butter, garlic, and Italian seasoning. Place under the broiler for 2-3 minutes, until golden brown. Yum!
– No egg bath is needed to coat the chicken. The breading will stick to the bare chicken and holds up nicely in the pan since it is fried for such a short period of time. Why add the calories if they aren’t really needed?

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