October 26, 2009

Vegetarian Chili

DSC_6622 copy
Adapted from Bread & Honey
This is without a doubt the best chili I’ve ever had.  It’s just the right consistency, the flavors are perfect together and I’m definitely adding this to a regular dish at our house!

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced (save a few slices for topping)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large can (28 ounces) crushed or diced tomatoes (I prefer crushed)
  • 2 15 oz. cans of beans, drained - black, garbanzos, kidney, and/or pinto (I used kidney and pinto)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (kids don’t do spicy, but I wanted a little kick)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1-2 cups vegetable stock depending on how thick you like it (I used 2 cups)
Heat olive oil over medium-high in a large pot or saucepan. Add onions and garlic and sauté until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and beans. Bring to a boil and add chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper, and stock. Stir well.  Turn heat down and simmer for about 20 minutes.
Serve topped with your favorite chili toppings. I used onions, grated cheese & sour cream.

October 21, 2009

Mummy Pizza

Mummy Pizza
Source:  Kara’s Kitchen Creations
Let’s get one thing straight before you go passing judgment about these super cute dinner dead guys.  I’m so not that mom.  You know the type?  The one who does all the crafty craftiness.  I don’t cut crusts off bread, or peel fruit for my kids and I don’t make shapes out of food either.  But it’s almost Halloween and I like to do fun things every once in a while just to shake things up a little.  These were simple, fast and, while I use the term loosely here, relatively healthy. 

English muffins
pizza sauce
string cheese
olives, halved
pizza seasoning (McCormick makes some in a shaker)

Directions (in case you haven’t figured this out for yourself)

Pre-heat oven to 375*
Split the muffins and spread the sauce liberally.  Place the halved olives where the eyes would be (as you can see I forgot to put the olives on before the cheese and was too lazy to fix it so I went with it).  If you’re super concerned about the eyes matching you could trim them up so the holes match.  I liked the mismatched-matched eyes – they seemed more spooky that way and it took much less effort!  Lay the pulled string cheese across each muffin to look like the mummy’s bandages!  Cook for about 10 minutes.

October 19, 2009

Parmesan Tilapia

Parmesan Tilapia
Adapted from Allrecipes
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon fresh dill
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 pounds tilapia fillets
  1. Preheat your oven's broiler (I put mine at 515*). Grease a broiling pan or line pan with aluminum foil.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together the Parmesan cheese, butter, yogurt and lemon juice. Season with dill and onion powder. Mix well and set aside.
  3. Arrange fillets in a single layer on the prepared pan. Broil a few inches from the heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the fillets over and broil for a couple more minutes. Remove the fillets from the oven and cover them with the Parmesan cheese mixture on the top side. Broil for 2 more minutes or until the topping is browned and fish flakes easily with a fork. Be careful not to over cook the fish. 
  4. Remove from oven and lightly sprinkle with paprika for garnish.
I served this with organic (yes, I know, I’m SO fancy!) long grain brown rice (cooked in vegetable stock instead of water – YUM!) and steamed broccoli.

October 14, 2009

Black Bean Burgers

Black Bean Burger
Source:  Allrecipes
Ovo-Lacto Vegetarian, not Vegan and certainly not Freegan is the theme here since these burgers contains eggs and cheese.  The eggs are meant to help the everything stick together.  However, if you want to go all Vegan, and since it’s recommended that you drain the peppers very well before mixing, you could just drain them a little less to retain some of the liquid to help meld everything together.
If you’re lucky enough to have a food processor, you’ll want to pull it out for this recipe and finely chop the bell pepper, onion, and garlic.  If not, a good old fashioned sharp knife will do!
  • 2 (16 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced & drained well of liquid
  • 1 small sweet onion, finely diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2  tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 1/2 cup seasoned croutons, crushed
  • cheese for topping (optional)
  1. If grilling, preheat an outdoor grill for medium heat, and lightly oil a sheet of aluminum foil. If baking, preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C), and lightly oil a baking sheet.
  2. In a medium bowl, mash black beans with a fork or potato masher until thick and pasty.  Add egg, chili powder and cumin.  Mix well.
  3. Mix in bread crumbs until the mixture is sticky and holds together. Divide mixture into patties.
  4. If grilling, place patties on foil, and grill about 8 minutes on each side, adding cheese the last few minutes to melt. If baking, place patties on baking sheet, and bake about 10 minutes on each side.
Makes approximately eight, 5 inch burgers (I’m not any good at measurements, don’t hold me to that!)

October 11, 2009

Fettuccine Alfredo

Fettucini Alfredo

Adapted from:  Annie’s Eats


  • 10 chicken tenders
  • 1 package mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons McCormick Chicken Seasoning
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Alfredo sauce:

  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1½ cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


Bring a large pot of water to boil for cooking the pasta. 

While you wait for water to boil, mix panko crumbs and chicken seasoning in large bowl.  Rinse chicken then dip in crumb mixture.  Place the chicken in a large skillet on medium heat.  Cook 7-8 minutes,turning to cook other side approximately 5 minutes or until cooked through.  Remove from heat, cut into small strips and set aside.

Cook pasta according to directions.

To make the sauce, melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Add the garlic and cream, and bring to a simmer.  Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to cook until thickened, about 5 minutes.  Mix in the Parmesan cheese and stir until completely melted.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Drain cooked pasta and immediately pour Alfredo sauce over pasta; stir till coated.  Serve chicken over pasta!

October 7, 2009



Adapted from:  Bread & Honey (Love this site)

Ok, seriously? I was like, ‘Uh I’m not gonna eat this without dressing.  No. Way.’  But then I tried it and it was without a doubt the best tostada stuff.  Ever.  Don’t argue with me.  And it was WITHOUT all the fattening dressing!


Crunchy corn tortillas

3 avocados, diced

1 small white onion, diced

1 red bell pepper, diced

1 can whole pinto beans, rinsed and drained

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 cucumber, diced

1 lime, sliced in half (seeds removed)
Bag of Spring Salad Mix


Heat beans through in a small skillet.  Remove beans and set aside.  In same skillet toss onions & red peppers in for 2-3 minutes on med-high heat to warm through and brown slightly.  Remove from heat and set aside. 

Place tortillas on a plate and pile high with lots of the Spring Mix.  Generously squeeze and sprinkle lime juice over lettuce then proceed with all the other healthy fixins!  Good stuff!

October 4, 2009

Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Adapted from: Annie’s Eats

This could so easily be turned vegetarian by substituting cous cous for the sausage.  When I cook cous cous I generally use chicken broth instead of water but for a veggie dish, I’d go with vegetable broth!

The flavors in this dish were subtle and SO complimentary. 

The kids wolfed it down and I’ll seriously be making it again!  I bought four zucchinis, planning on two adults to eat a whole one, the big kid to get her own & the two little ones to split one. 

Stuffed Zucchini Boats

The sausage mixture made a lot more than I thought it would but I had a green pepper that was begging to be used, so I sliced the top off, removed the seeds, and packed it full as well.  I still have enough sausage leftover for at least another full zucchini, and maybe a second {red?} pepper!


  • 5 zucchini, about 12 inches long
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
  • ½ cup onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1 lb. pork sausage (I used Jimmy Dean Extra Mild)
  • 2 tbsp. dry white wine
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and diced
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tsp. minced fresh rosemary
  • ¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese


Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees

Cut zucchini in half lengthwise.  With a spoon, scrape out seeds and not much else leaving a thick zucchini shell.  Reserve about half of the insides.

In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil.  Sauté the onion and garlic until tender, about 4-5 minutes.  Add the mushrooms and reserved zucchini insides to the skillet and sauté another 2 minutes.  Remove from the heat & set aside.

Cook the sausage until lightly browned, stirring occasionally.  Drain excess fat then stir in the cooked onion and mushroom mixture.  Add the wine to the pan along with the basil and rosemary & mix then add cheese.  Cook for 1 more minute.  Drain of any excess fat, remove from heat and add tomatoes.

Fill the zucchini shells with the mixture.  Fill a baking dish with ¼-inch of water.  Place the filled zucchini shells in the pan and bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes, until golden brown.  Remove the zucchini from the pan and serve immediately.

I’d planned on having rice with this, but it was filling all on it’s own.  YUM!