Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Sweet Potato Fries

This has become one of our favorite side dishes because it's a super yummy way to add a healthy side dish that's a vegetable! I love dipping mine in ketchup, and I can get Reid to eat them by doing the same with his! Also, we like ours a little crispy, and I've been trying different things, and so far the best way is to use less olive oil. Also, feel free to use any kind of spices that you like. Please leave a comment if you find another delicious way to make sweet potato fries!

Sweet Potato Fries
2-3 long, skinny sweet potatoes (they're easier to cut)
Tony Sacheres seasoning
Cut the potatoes in half and then slice into small thin fries...or thick if you like that way better. Toss with a little bit of olive oil and spices. Spread out onto a pan with sides. Roast at 425 for 20-25 minutes or until they're at the desired crispness; sometimes I flip them halfway.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Simple and Delicious Banana Bread

After making this a couple (ok, so LOTS of times) I've tweaked a little - it's better if you use 4 bananas and 1 and a 1/3 cup flour. Also, I added about 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed meal to add some more health benefits (and you can't taste it, promise!!)

I actually love when I have a few bananas that turn from a lovely yellow into a yucky brown because that gives me an excuse to make banana bread, a favorite! When this happens, I will scour the internet looking for a healthy recipe, but today, I found one that might not be the healthiest (although it's not terrible for you), but it's so easy and it's definitely a keeper!! I love to eat my slices heated with some butter. Yum! The perfect breakfast, afternoon snack, after lunch/after dinner treat...

Banana Bread Recipe

3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed
1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup sugar (can easily reduce to 3/4 cup)
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour

No need for a mixer for this recipe. Preheat the oven to 350°F. With a wooden spoon, mix butter into the mashed bananas in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the sugar, egg, and vanilla. Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in. Add the flour last, mix. Pour mixture into a buttered 4x8 inch loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour (my oven cooks faster, so I always check before time is done). Cool on a rack. Remove from pan and slice to serve.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Low Fat Creamy Parmesan Mashed Potatoes

Mashed Potatoes
2 lb. red potatoes (about 8), cut into chunks
1 cup fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken broth
4 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese
1/2 cup light sour cream
3 Tbsp. Kraft grated parmesan cheese
Place potatoes in large saucepan. Add broth; cover. Bring to boil on high heat; simmer on medium heat 5 min., stirring after 8 min. Uncver; stir potatoes. Simmer, uncovered, 5 to 6 min., or until potatoes are tender and most of broth is absorbed. Add cream cheese. Reduce heat to low. Mash potatoes slightly until cream cheese is melted. Add sour cream and parmesan; mash until potatoes are smooth and heated through.

Lasagna Toss

Lasagna Toss
1 lb ground beef
2 green peppers, chopped (I'm omitting this)
3 cloves garlic, minced (I just finely chop)
1 jar (26 oz.) spaghetti sauce
1 2/3 cups water
1/4 cup Kraft Zesty Italian dressing
12 oven-ready lasagna noodles, broken into quarters
1 cup shredded low-moisture, part-skim Mozzarella cheese
Brown meat in large saucepan; drain.
Stir in peppers, garlic, spaghetti sauce, water and dressing; bring to a boil. Add noodles; stir. Cover.
Cook on medium- low heat 10 to 15 min. or until noodles are tender, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat. Sprinkle with cheese; cover. Let stand 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.
Special extra (I'm planning on doing this part): Stir 1/2 cup Ricotta cheese into noodle mixture before sprinkling with mozzarella.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Hot Chicken Salad

OH MY GOODNESS, this has to be one of my most favorite meals! Ever since eating this at Amy Carroll's baby shower almost 2 years ago, I have been obsessed! Now, since Matt will have no part of this, I don't make it for dinner but will make this at the beginning of the week and eat on it for lunch. Don't let me fool you - this should last probably all week, but I think I eat a couple servings (ok maybe more) at a sitting so it does not last long! Here are exact measurements, but I don't measure out the ingredients for this recipe; I just add however much I like of the item.

Hot Chicken Salad
3 cups chopped cooked chicken (you can use a rotisserie chicken from the store)
2 cups chopped celery
1 cup toasted, sliced almonds
1 1/2 cup mayo
1/2 of lemon, squeezed into mixture
grated sharp cheddar
crushed BBQ flavored Lays

Combine the first 5 ingredients in a 9x9 baking dish (that's what I use because I like a thicker mixture, but you can use a bigger pan). Cover with a layer of cheese, and then add chips on top. Bake at 375 for about 25 minutes. I like to eat this with crackers, but it's also delicious by itself! Also, sometimes I add a dash or so of Worcestershire sauce, and if I use fresh chicken, I add salt and pepper.

Kid Friendly Trail Mix

This is a simple, easy snack to put together and carry with you! And, not only is it kid-friendly, but definitely adult-friendly!!

Trail Mix


5 cups Rice Chex

1 bag M&Ms

1 (16 oz) bag pretzels - either twists or sticks

1 (14 oz) bite-size Cheez-it crackers (I get the Parm. Garlic and Cheddar box)
1 (12 oz.) container honey-roasted peanuts (optional - depending on the child's age)
Store in an airtight container. Makes 15 servings.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Alfredo Bow Tie Pasta, with or without Chicken

Thanks to Lynette for this yummy recipe! Also, Matt doesn't like all the veggies, so I just split the alfredo sauce in half and heat his and he just has pasta, chicken and alfredo sauce while I have the whole she-bang!

Bow Tie Pasta

3/4 package bow tie pasta

4 garlic cloves

1/2 onion

1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes

1 can sliced black olives

1 lb. mushrooms

1 jar of alfredo sauce

(you may also add/delete any other veggies)

1. Boil pasta as directed.

2. Chop up all the veggies and saute them in a tablespoon of olive oil until tender.

3. Add alfredo sauce and simmer until heated through.

4. You can also add some sliced grilled chicken and some parmesan cheese!

Beef Roast on Hoagie Rolls

YUM is all I can say for this meal! This is so delicious served with some tator tots on the side and green beans.
Beef Roast on Hoagie Rolls
pot/chuck roast
can of beer
can of beef broth
jar of banana peppers (don't omit - this adds so much flavor!)
1 TB garlic powder
2 TBS Italian seasoning
Hoagie rolls
mozzarella cheese
Cook all ingredients (except rolls and cheese) on low for 8 hours. Before serving, toast the hoagie rolls with cheese in oven; serve the roast on top.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Swiss Chicken, aka Hammer Chicken

Swiss Chicken
4 chicken breasts
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1/8 tsp. pepper
4 slices Swiss Cheese
1/4 cup skim milk (or whatever milk you drink)
1 can cream of chicken soup
Stove top dressing crumbs
Pound chicken breasts with meat mallet until thin and tender. Place chicken in a 9x13 baking pan sprayed with non--stick spray. Sprinkle breasts with garlic powder and pepper. Top each breast with a piece of swiss cheese. Set aside. Combine soup and milk, stirring well until smooth. Pour over chicken. Sprinkle with dressing crumbs and lightly coat with PAM to moisten. Cover and bake at 350 for 50-55 minutes.

Ritz Cracker Chicken

Thanks to Brittney for this recipe, a variation of one I make!

Ritz Cracker Chicken
2 sleeves of Ritz crackers
2 cans chicken (this is my easy way, you can use "real" chicken if you prefer - shredded)
1 can cream of celery
1 can cream of chicken
8 oz. sour cream
1 stick of butter
Spray 9x13 baking dish. Crumble sleeve of crackers on the bottom of the pan. Mix chicken, soups and sour cream together. Spoon over crackers. Crumble other sleeve of crackers on top. Pour 1 stick of melted butter on top of crackers. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.

Easy Chicken Parmesan

Recipe from the Kraft foods website


1 jar (26 oz.) spaghetti sauce (although I'm getting 1 and 1/2)
6 Tbsp. KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese, divided
6 small boneless skinless chicken breast halves (1-1/2 lb.)
1-1/2 cups KRAFT Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

**Also, something different from the recipe, but I'm going to dip my chicken in egg, and then coat with Italian bread crumbs**

Make It
HEAT oven to 375°F. Pour sauce into 13x9-inch baking dish. Stir in 1/4 cup (4 Tbsp.) Parmesan. Add chicken; turn to coat both sides with sauce. Cover with foil.
BAKE 30 min. Uncover. (They might take longer than this)
TOP with remaining cheeses; bake 5 min. or until chicken is done (165ºF) and cheese is melted.

Kraft Kitchens Tips
Cooking Know-How
If using larger chicken breasts, cut them lengthwise in half before placing in the baking dish to ensure that they get done in the 35-min. bake time.

Special Extra
Try serving this delicious baked chicken over your favorite hot cooked pasta!

Prepare using KRAFT Shredded Low-Moisture Part Skim Mozzarella Cheese.