About Me

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Who am I? Wife. Mother of 2. "Newbie" to fitness. Personal Trainer-in-training. Lover of health. Fitness. Religion. Family. Gluten and refined sugar intolerant. Welcome to my journey. Learn with me.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Chicken Cordon Bleu Pasta

Wow! I LOVE Chicken Cordon Bleu and I was so excited to try this recipe - and WOW it didn't disappoint! I LOVED it so much and Jake had three helpings! This will DEFINITELY be a constant in our household. We put together the entire dinner and ate in one hour's time. Try it! You will love the flavor! I got this recipe here.

From Blogging… It’s What’s for Dinner!

2 cups cooked, diced chicken
6 oz deli ham, diced
2 cans cream of chicken soup
8 oz sour cream ( I used fat free)
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
cooked pasta

Combine all ingredients in a medium sauce pan until cheese is melted, smooth, and creamy. Serve over whatever pasta you like.

*NOTE: I used large shell pasta and it was PERFECT! I definitely wouldn't use regular spaghetti noodles. It seems like small noodles are best: bowties, elbows, etc.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Baked Oven Omelet

I love recipes from Real Mom Kitchen. I browsed all of her blog recipes and picked out a few that I wanted to try. This one was another one from her compilation. It was pretty tasty with a nice strong flavor, mostly contributed by the green onions. If you don't like soggy bread texture, this may not be the recipe for you. It has a very unusual texture that might be mistaken for ALMOST soggy bread. But it sure does taste good. It requires a little bit more work and time, but both my husband and I enjoyed it. I got this recipe here.

from Real Mom Kitchen

1 loaf of bread
3 cups of grated cheddar cheese (I think the sharper the better)
1/2 pound chopped ham
1/4 cup chopped green onion
5 eggs beaten
2 1/3 cup milk
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. paprika
1 Tbsp. prepared mustard

Trim crust off bread. Save crust for another use. As you layer the bread, butter each side of the bread. I just use my tub of margarine for this. Place a layer of bread in the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan, just enough buttered slices to cover the bottom of the pan. Then layer 1 cup of the cheese, half the ham, and half the green onion. Place another layer of buttered bread slices. Top with 1 cup cheese, remaining ham, and remaining green onion. Beat egg, milk, salt, paprika, and mustard together. Pour over layers in pan. Top with remaining cheese and refrigerate overnight. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes, until knife comes out clean. Serves 9-12.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Chicken Tortellini Soup

So, not only did I finally get a CAMERA for Christmas, I also got this great new cookbook called Made Simple Chicken. I love chicken and so I am very excited to try the MANY tasty looking recipes. This first recipe looked too good to wait any amount of time before making it - and it didn't disappoint. I loved the flavor and Jake said it is a keeper for our regular recipes! It was very easy to make and only required a trip to the grocery store for a few inexpensive items. (Getting packaged tortellini instead of the refrigerated kind is a HUGE price break, and it isn't that hard to cook it yourself!)

From Made Simple Chicken

6 cups chicken broth or 1 can (48 ounces) chicken broth
1 package (9 ounces) refrigerated cheese and spinach tortellini or three-cheese tortellini
1 package (about 6 ounces) refrigerated fully cooked chicken breast strips, cut into bite-size pieces
2 cups coarsely chopped fresh baby spinach leaves
4 to 6 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped chives or 2 tablespoons sliced green onions

Bring chicken broth to a boil in large saucepan over high heat. Add tortellini. Reduce heat to medium; cook 5 minutes. Stir in chicken and spinach.

Reduce heat to low. Cook 3 minutes or until chicken is hot. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and chives. Makes 4 servings.

*I used 6 cups water plus 6 chicken boullion cubes for my broth, 9 ounces uncooked spinach tortellini (cooked to package directions), frozen chicken cooked up in a bit of oil with onion powder, salt, and pepper until browned, and the green onions instead of the chives.

Hot Vanilla

I love hot drinks! Especially hot chocolate and hot apple cider. They are so soothing and comforting, and with all of this crazy snow, that is just what we need! This one is DEFINITELY a keeper! In Jake's words, "Yummmmm, that is the stuff!" It's fast, it's easy, it doesn't require a whole lot of ingredients you wouldn't already have on hand, and it's EXTREMELY tasty! I got this recipe here.

from Real Mom Kitchen

1/2 cup of whipping cream
1 tablespoon of chocolate syrup
Dash of cinnamon
1 cup of milk (per hot vanilla)
2 teaspoons of sugar (per hot vanilla)
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract (per hot vanilla)

1. Start with the topping. In a medium bowl, whip 1/2 cup of whipping cream until it's frothy. Add 1 tablespoon of chocolate syrup and a dash of cinnamon, then continue to whip the mixture until everything is well blended and peaks form. Makes enough to top about 6 drinks.

2. For each hot vanilla, microwave 1 cup of milk and 2 teaspoons of sugar in a mug for 90 seconds. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Top with a dollop of chocolate cream, a drizzle of chocolate syrup, and a dash of cinnamon.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Topsy Turvy Taco Bake

Okay, so I admit I had my doubts about this one and so did Jake. As I was baking it it looked REALLY peculiar and Jake kept saying, "Are you sure about this recipe?" BUT... in the end it turned out really good and it looks quite pretty when you dress it all up with the toppings. It tastes pretty good too and I wouldn't mind making it again because it was so simple and tasty. I got this recipe here.

from Real Mom Kitchen
1 ½ lbs. ground beef (raw) (I only used 1 pound and it was plenty)
1 egg
1 T. instant onion (just the dried minced stuff)
1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce
1 pkg (1.25 oz.) taco seasoning
1 pkg (8.5 oz.) cornmeal muffin mix (I used a jiffy mix)
Dressings: chopped tomatoes, avocado, shredded lettuce, green onions, cheese, black olives, salsa, and sour cream (whatever you like on your taco)

Combine beef, egg, onion, tomato sauce and taco seasoning. Spread in even layer in bottom of 10-in baking dish (I used an 11x8 dish). Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Prepare cornmeal muffin mix according to package directions. Spread over top of beef. Continue baking at 400 degrees for 15 minutes longer. Remove from oven and let sit on counter for 10 minutes. Turn upside down on serving plate and top with tomatoes, avocado, black olives and cheese; dollop sour cream on individual servings.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Caramel Cream Brownie Trifle

I took this to a celebration dinner last night for my little brother and it was a hit! My dad took a bite and said, "This is awesome!" It is very rich, so be careful about that, but the combination of the flavors and textures are wonderful. The reviews all said that it gets better and better the longer you let it sit. The pudding kind of soaks into the brownies so they are moist and delicious! I got this recipe from here.

From Betty Crocker

1 Box (1 lb 2.3 oz) Betty Crocker® fudge brownie mix
Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on brownie mix box
1 box (4-serving size) chocolate fudge instant pudding and pie filling mix
2 cups milk
1/4 cup caramel topping
1 container (8 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional) - I used Heath toffee pieces instead

1. Heat oven to 350ºF. Bake brownie mix as directed on box, using water, oil and eggs, in 13x9-inch pan. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
2. Make pudding mix as directed on box for pudding, using milk; refrigerate. Cut brownies into 1-inch pieces. Thoroughly stir caramel topping into whipped topping.
3. In 3-quart glass bowl, layer half each of the brownies, pudding, walnuts and whipped topping mixture; repeat.
4. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving but no longer than 24 hours. Store covered in refrigerator.

*NOTE: I used a 2-quart glass bowl and it was the PERFECT size.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Blueberry Sour Cream Pancakes

I just love pancakes and so I was very excited to try this new recipe. It did not disappoint! I think these were probably my all-time favorite way to have pancakes. They had the most wonderful flavor! I think next time I will try raspberries or strawberries because these pancakes would be good with any variety of fruit folded into them. Jake had six and just kept saying, "Yum!"

from Erin at sisterscafe.blogspot.com

2 c. all-purpose flour
¼ c. sugar
4 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 eggs
1 ½ c. milk
1 c. (8-oz) sour cream (I used fat free sour cream)
1/3 c. butter, melted
1 c. fresh or frozen blueberries (I used frozen that were partially thawed)

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. In another bowl, beat the eggs. Add milk, sour cream, and butter; mix well. Stir into dry ingredients just until blended. Fold in the blueberries. Pour batter by ¼ cupfuls onto a greased hot griddle; flip when golden on bottom. Cook until the second side is golden brown.

*Note: This recipe made 16 pancakes for us. (Using 1/3 cupfuls)

Monday, December 8, 2008

Cheesy Lasagna Rolls

I LOVED these! They were one of my favorite meals that I have made recently. I added 1 lb. of browned ground beef to my mix before rolling it up into my noodles and I thought it was a great addition. Jake said it was a little bit too much meat for him although he liked the rolls in and of themselves. Maybe next time I will either try halving the ground beef or leaving it out altogether. I got this recipe from here.


12 Lasagna noodles, cooked and cooled (I only used 10 because that is what I had)
1 jar spaghetti sauce, divided

1 container (15 oz) ricotta cheese
1 egg
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp parsley flakes
1/8 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic salt
2 cups mozzarella cheese, divided (1 1/2 cup for filling, 1/2 cup on top)

Pour half of spaghetti sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan. Mix together all ingredients for the filling. Lay noodles flat and spread filling mixture on noodles. Roll up like a sleeping bag and lay in pan. Top with remaining sauce and mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.

*Note: Do not over cook noodles. Follow directions on box of noodles.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Scalloped Potatoes and Ham

I had potatoes that I needed to use up and so was browsing through some recipes and thought that this one looked delicious. I love browsing recipes and found this one here. It got great reviews from other cooks, but I was a bit skeptical about making it after looking at the ingredients. I was afraid it wouldn't have much flavor to it. Plus, it takes a really long time to cook. If I spend that much time on a recipe I want it to be worth it! Well, I can assure you that this recipe was worth the time. It tasted a lot like my hot dog casserole recipe (which we love) although this one has to be a lot more healthy! If you have the time to make it I promise you won't be disappointed!


1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup flour
2 teaspoons salt (I wouldn't use more than 1 1/2 teaspoons)
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3 cups milk
3 cups ham, cooked
1 large green pepper, chopped
1 large onion, chopped (I just used onion powder)
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
5 cups potatoes, pared and sliced

Melt butter in large sauce pan over low heat; blend in flour, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 1 minute. Remove from heat gradually stir in milk. Return to heat; cook until thickened and bubbly. Fold in ham, onion, green pepper and cheese. Pour over potatoes in a large bowl. Stir gently then move into a buttered or greased 13X9-inch baking dish; cover with foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Uncover and continue to bake for 1 hour.
Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

*NOTE: I topped my dish with cheese for the last 25 minutes of cooking. It was a delicious addition! It was golden brown when the dish finished and added such a wonderful flavor!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Mom's Chicken Sour Cream Enchiladas

I grew up with this recipe but, amazingly enough, I have never made it myself until tonight! IT WAS SOOOOO GOOD!!! It took very little time to prepare and I am currently sitting in the most comfortable position I can comprehend to try and take some pressure off of my extremely full stomach. I think my husband had 4 helpings! Try this one! You won't be disappointed! Sorry there is no picture... I will hopefully have a camera soon!


2 cans cream of chicken soup
½ chopped onion (I just sprinkle in onion powder)
1 can diced chilies
¾ c. water (I used chicken broth)
2 cups diced, cooked chicken
12 - 16 oz. Sour cream (I only used about 12 oz.)
Cheddar cheese

Mix together in a warm pan: soup, onion, chilies, and water. Add chicken. Fold in sour cream. Heat tortillas in frying pan (I just spray the pan or put in a little butter). In a 9 x 13 pan cover bottom of pan with sauce. Put 2 Tbsp. sauce and 1 Tbsp. grated cheese into tortilla and roll. Put side by side in pan. Cover with remaining sauce. Sprinkle with grated cheese. Cover. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. These are even better if they sit for one hour before baking.

*NOTE: For those of you who like things SPICY I added about 1/4 tsp of cayenne pepper to our sauce. I also sliced olives and topped my enchiladas with them.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Pineapple Meatballs

I have always been such a fan of my Swedish Meatball recipe that I was a little hesitant to try a new one, but this recipe certainly did not disappoint! It reminded me a lot of the flavor of sweet and sour chicken and next time I make this (because there will be a next time) I may even add a chopped green pepper into the sauce. The recipe below is my modified recipe. I halved the meatball part and left the sauce part as is because Jake is a big fan of sauce. You can find the original recipe here.



1 lb. ground beef (lean)
1 large egg
¼ cup oatmeal
½ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
¾ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder


1 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
¾ cups pineapple juice (reserved from pineapple tidbits)
1 cup water
¼ cup white vinegar
1 ½ tablespoon soy sauce
1 ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 (14 oz) can pineapple tidbits

Step 1: Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. Make the meatballs by combining all meatball ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well and shape into about 1” meatballs.

Step 2: Make the sauce by combining cornstarch and brown sugar in a sauce pan. Then add ¾ cup pineapple juice and 1 cup water and blend until the mixture is smooth. Add vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce and stir. Simmer uncovered on medium low until thickened (about 8 minutes - mine only took about 4 minutes to thicken).

Step 3: In a casserole dish pour sauce over meatballs and add pineapple tidbits. Lightly mix meatballs until they are coated with the sauce. Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes or until fully cooked.

*This makes a LOT of sauce so don't be surprised!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Brandi's Pumpkin Dessert

This is a great pumpkin recipe that my family likes even more than pumpkin pie! It is SOOO easy to make and tastes phenomenal! My favorite part is the crust! Try it - it's a fantastic holiday treat!


1 box yellow cake mix
1 stick of butter

Melt butter and add to cake mix. Mix well.

Lg. can pumpkin
12 oz. Evaporated milk
4 eggs
1 ½ c. sugar
¼ tsp. Cloves
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
Sprinkle nutmeg

Stir ingredients together. Press ½ cake mix in bottom of greased 9x13 pan. Add pumpkin mixture on top. Sprinkle other half of cake mix over pumpkin layer.

Cook at 350 for 1 hour or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean.