I Made Meatloaf

You guys!

I. Made. Meatloaf.

Okay, this may be a very small accomplishment for most people out there but for me it is HUGE!

If you know me, you definitely know that I didn’t grow up hanging out in the kitchen with my parents and boiling rice, wasn’t my forte.

Growing up, I had a easy bake oven and I loved it.

I loved being able to throw something I mixed together into a “oven” then tossed it into the microwave — as sad as that sounds. But the best part was when my brother would enjoy them as well. He would always encourage me to make cakes because he always loved eating them.

My parents both shared the responsibility of cooking in our house, but my dad was the main cook in our household.

My dad would get home earlier than my mom and so he would stop at the grocery store, pick up whatever it is that they were cooking and get things started. My mom would get home and help him in the kitchen and then we would eat.

On occasion I would help cut up some things at times but I was too “slow” for my dad and he would just usher me to the side so he could finish cooking.

When it was time to be a wife and cook things on my own, I was happy that I lucked out and married a guy who grew up in a household of cookers and loved to cook himself.

But then he found a job that required him to work nights and the responsibility of cooking fell on me, I knew making sandwiches wasn’t going to get me too far or him for that matter.

I was a horrible cook, besides cutting up “seasoning” onions [that was an issue in itself], cilantro, and tomatoes. It was possible that I could potentially kill you with a meal.

I couldn’t even boil rice y’all and to this day I absolutely hate cooking rice on the stove top, I honestly prefer to do it in a rice cooker.

If you follow me on social media you are aware now-a-days, it is a bit different and I have come a long way since my burnt rice and easy bake oven days. I have upgraded to an actual oven and I am decent in the kitchen.

I love finding new recipes on Pinterest and while this may show my age, I really love getting new cookbooks as gifts, or things I steal from my friends [with their knowledge, of course].

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3 Quick Ways to Use Your Leftover Chicken

hello loves!

I am back today with a simple way to utilize left over chicken, whether it be rotisserie chicken, grilled chicken breast, or baked chicken.  For us a family of three we sometimes will tend to have left overs just depending on how hungry E is that night.  I usually like to get the most out of our dinners, especially since eating out can get real pricey fast.

Besides utilizing them the next day for left overs of exactly what we cooked the night before sometimes I can stretch them for another dinner completely, that way we use all of our food, without having to throw out too much or do too much work every single night. 

 

3 Way to Use Your Leftover Chicken

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1. Chicken Salad

Once you take your chicken out of the container start to shred it so that you get smaller pieces of chicken instead of legs, thighs, breast, etc.  Whatever cut you have make it smaller, by shredding it with your hands it gives you more chicken, plus it will give the chicken the ability to mix better with the mayo and other ingredients.  

Note: You can use a food processor instead of using your hands that is totally up to you just know that you will have finer pieces of chicken.

Directions:
I typically will dice a tomato and red onion, but on occasion Eric will add in celery [not my thing] he will add it into his portion.  Then once everything is in the bowl, I add the mayo and mix it all together.  I sometimes get a little cajun seasoning and season it after the mayo has coating everything well, just for a little extra taste.  

If you make your own baked chicken and season it really well, then you can probably avoid this step.  Sometimes when I am in a rush I get the store bought chicken and they aren't really seasoned all the way through.

2. Chicken Pizza

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Ugh I love me some pizza, like it is one of my favorite food but the regular pizza places just aren't doing it for me anymore and I am liking the gourmet pizza places more and more.  Especially the ones that use a brick oven, YUM!

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I recently had some left over baked chicken and I decided make a homemade pizza.

Directions:
To start shred the chicken by hand, throw on your favorite pizza ingredients or mine: white sauce, red onions, mushrooms, mozzarella, and parmesan.  I added all of that on top of a gourmet store bought pizza dough, sauce first then cheese, and finally the chicken.  

3. Chicken Tacos

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If you have already shredded your chicken by hand for the chicken salad and the pizza you can always save some of it to make, tacos!  

All you will need is:

  • Tortillas or Crunchy Taco Shells
  • Sour Cream
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Beans [we eat black beans, yum]
  • Guacamole
  • Pico  

And there you have it 3 simple ways to utilize your left over chicken.  

I know our house can get busy around here, E will get off later than expect, J will not be in the mood to go down for his nap and we have to use what we got to get what we want, dinner!  I know there are a lot of busy moms out there so I hope this helped you loves!

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If you love this post, please let me know so I can come up with some more great ideas for you guys.  

Pork Chops and Mash Potatoes

For dinner last night, I made these glorious Pork Chops. They were delicious and cooked to perfection.  

I forgot once again to take something out for dinner and needed to come up with something quick, a couple of posts back you read that I was opting out of eating as much beef as possible.  I have been making Mediterranean Turkey Meatballs, Turkey Burgers, and Turkey Breakfast Bowls, so I decided it was time to add a little Pork into the mix.  Normally we don't do pork much either but we haven't had it in a while so I figured tonight was a good night to do so.

I picked up these gorgeous chops at our local Kroger, I was going to make some potatoes on the side with some canned green beans because well #momlife. 

Before I did any seasoning of these chops, I coated them with EVOO, so that when I did season them none of the herbs would burn in the pot.

I seasoned the Pork Chops with Himalayan Pink Salt, black pepper, thyme, Italian seasoning and Tone's Garlic and Herb seasoning as well.  The Garlic in the Tone's does burn as any garlic would if you don't have enough EVOO, so I added some extra into the pot and let it heat up before placing my meat into it. 

Like the steaks I made last week you can totally put them in the refrigerator or you can cook them right away just depending on how much time you have on your hands.  I didn't have much time because I have been trying to get organized with this blogging of mine.  

Into the pot they went for about 8-10 minutes on each side [depends on the thickness of the cut] then another 15 in the oven at 425 degrees, my issue is undercooking chicken and pork so I always cut them to make sure they are cooked before serving.  I do have a meat thermometer, however, I don't have batteries for it yet.

I personally think they turned out well seasoned and cooked perfectly, but I can be biased because after all, I did cook them.  

I have been debating on removing the food posts on my blog but I do love cooking now and I guess it is a big part of my life since I try as much as possible to cook for my family. Next thing I need to learn according to E is cooking Caribbean Style food, but it is definitely time 🤣. 

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Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa

hello there loves!

As I have said before I am a huge fan of easy cooking.  I also love those intricate detail recipes but I love to save those for more of a weekend I am not in a rush type of meal or when E will help me with those.

I recently picked up some Tilapia and Shrimp from Kroger and wanted to make something quick.  

I seasoned the Tilapia and the Shrimp with the same ingredients, I can't give you any measurements because I just sparingly put it on top of each meat.  I did use butter for the shrimp and Olive Oil for the Tilapia.

The Shrimp and spinach went into the oven and the Tilapia was cooked on the stove top with the quinoa. 

One tip I will always use while making quinoa is pairing it with avocado and cooking it in chicken broth. If you don't have chicken broth I highly recommend seasoning the water before putting it in there, it helps the flavoring tremendously.  Quinoa also doesn't take long to cook at all and use can use any left overs in a salad the next day.  

Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
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Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
Tilapia + Shrimp with Spinach and Quinoa
 

Gluten Free Turkey Spaghetti

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Gluten Free Turkey Spaghetti

 

I got you guys better pictures this time! : ] you're welcome.

Last night, I made Turkey Spaghetti I had been craving spaghetti for a while now and E and I have been trying to avoid going out to eat as much as possible so we have been doing our best to make homemade dinners.  This dinner is so easy to make and my favorite, I think I will make it again this week.  

In order to keep this dish a little healthier I decided to use Gluten Free Pasta along with the Turkey. Normally I wouldn't add much veggies to the dish but I some left over mushrooms that I didn't want to waste and they fit into the dish perfectly.  

I can't say that I noticed a difference in the taste of the pasta at all, I have tried Gluten Free Pasta before and didn't have an issue with the taste but I have heard some complaints from others.  Just make sure you salt the water and don't let it sit in the water for a long period of time.  I learned the hard way that since the water is still hot it will cook the pasta longer, so strain it right away.  

Ingredients
Gluten Free Spaghetti
1 bottle of Bertolli Pasta Sauce
1 lb of Ground Turkey
Salt
Pepper
Garlic Powder
1/2 of a yellow onion
Shredded Parmesan [optional]
Handful of Mushrooms [optional]
1 teaspoon of sugar [optional]
1 tablespoon of olive oil

Directions:
1. Bring 4-6 quarts of salted water to a boil, then add pasta.  While pasta is boiling add salt, pepper, garlic powder, and roasted garlic and red bell pepper seasoning to ground turkey.  

2. Put 1 tablespoon of olive oil into skillet, then add Ground Turkey.  Once the turkey is slightly cooked, add any additional vegetables that you would like.

3.  Once your veggies have softened to the consistency that you like, add in the spaghetti sauce.  We use Bertolli and I put a little water in the bottle to get any excess sauce out, just make sure you give it enough time to blend into the sauce.

4. Check pasta after the 10-15 min time to check if it is Al-dente or to your liking.  Then strain the pasta. 

5.  Put a little bit of sugar into your pasta sauce, I learned this from E he likes the sauce to be a little sweeter than tangy. 

6.  Strain pasta as soon as possible and add a little bit of pasta sauce to keep the noodles from sticking.

7.  Plate food and take pictures. : ]