Sunday, May 19, 2013

Snack Edition: Cinnamon-Orange Mini Muffins

So this snack was yummy.  It had the deliciousness of cinnamon and sugar with a sweet hint of orange.  Soooo good!  I got the original recipe from Betty Crocker.
So first thing's first: I preheat my oven to 400 degrees, and then sprayed my mini muffin pan with cooking spray and set it aside.
In a bowl, I added 2 cups of Bisquick, 1/4 cup of sugar, 1/4 cup of softened butter, 1/2 cup of milk (I used Soy milk for our dairy-allergic child!), 1 teaspoon of grated orange peel and 1 egg and mixed everything until it was blended, about 30 seconds.  Then I put the batter, evenly, into the mini muffin tin.
I let it bake in the preheated oven for about 10-12 minutes.  While that was cooking, I mixed 2/3 cup of sugar with 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and set it aside.  Then I melted 1/2 cup of butter in another bowl and set that aside.
When the muffins were cooked, I separately rolled the tops of each muffin in the melted butter and then into the cinnamon/sugar mixture and voila!  Yummy snacks were done!  It stated ti serve it warm, which I did with some, but when we ate the leftovers on another day, they were equally as yummy!  :)  The muffins were 130 calories/ mini muffin and only $0.10/muffin!
Here's the recipe!!

2 cups Original Bisquick mix
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon grated orange peel
1 egg
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup butter, melted

Honey Barbecue Meatloaf

So, I've never been a fan of meatloaf.  I'm not sure if it was the type of meat that had been used before when I had it, or if it was the ketchup, but something in meatloaf just never appealed to me.  UNTIL THIS MEAL.  Holy cow, please try this meal for yourself, I am BEGGING you.  This was ridiculously delicious.
I originally found this recipe on Pinterest, which lead me to this recipe and WOW.
So first thing's first: I preheat my oven to 350 degrees and then started to prep the meal.  In a large bowl I added 1 pound of extra lean ground beef along with 2/3 panko bread crumbs, 1 tablespoon (each) of Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard and honey, 1/4 cup of barbecue sauce and 1 teaspoon (each) of salt and pepper.  I mixed it with my hands and put the loaf into a loaf pan that I had previously sprayed with cooking spray.
In a smaller bowl I mixed an additional 1/4 cup of barbecue sauce with 1 tablespoon honey and 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce.  I spooned half of the mixture on top of the loaf and saved the additional for later.
Once I placed the loaf in the oven I allowed it to cook for 45 minutes.  When it was cooked, I sliced them into 4 pieces, drizzled the remaining sauce over the pieces (which I had briefly heat up in the microwave) and served it with some frozen peas and voila!  Dinner was served!
This was an easy meal with little prep and BIG flavor!  Everyone was quiet during this meal, which I know means they loved it because they're too busy eating to talk haha!
The meal was only 310 calories (I believe the peas added another 60-70 calories) and only $1.51/serving!  Woo!!
Here's the recipe!!

1 pound extra lean ground beef
2/3 cup panko bread crumbs
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons honey, divided
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

Happy cooking everyone!!

Chinese Fried Noodles

Oh my gosh, I love this meal soooooooooo much!  I've made this at least a dozen times since I originally made it; for lunches, for quick dinners when we've had events, etc.; it's THAT good.  The best part?  It's so simple, and yet just another way to showcase how versatile ramen noodles are!  :)  Sometimes I add/substitute other veggies or things in the noodles to suit my tastes; it can easily be changed up!
So I originally got this recipe from and it's sooooo good.  My oldest son doesn't even enjoy scrambled eggs that much but really loves it in this meal!
First thing's first: the recipe called to cook the noodles first, but I actually like to prep my veggies and everything else, as I like the noodles to be warm when I go to cook them.  I thinly sliced 4 green onions, peeled and grated 1 small carrot, and minced 1/4 cup of red bell pepper.
Now on the recipe it stated to use vegetable oil for this part, but I wanted to lessen the amount of calories so I only used cooking spray.  Each vegetable needed to be cooked separately, so I sprayed a skillet with cooking spray and cooked the green onions, the carrots, the red bell pepper, as well as 1/2 cup of frozen green peas.  They each needed to be cooked for about 2-3 minutes.  Once those were all cooked, I set them aside in a bowl and started to cook the eggs.  I separately beat three eggs in a bowl, sprayed additional cooking spray in the skillet and scrambled the beaten eggs.  After that was cooked, I also set that aside and started on the next item.
From here, I boiled 2 packets of Oriental flavored ramen noodles (make sure to set aside the sauce packets) and, once they were thoroughly cooked, I drained the noodles.  In a skillet, I added 2 tablespoons of sesame oil along with 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and cooked the noodles over medium heat for about 3-5 minutes, stirring them constantly during that time.  Once that was cooked for that time, I added the ramen season packets, along with soy sauce (the recipe wasn't specific on the amount of soy sauce, so you can just eyeball the noodles and use whatever amount suits you), and tossed it to coat the noodles.  Then I added all of the cooked veggies and scrambled eggs and allowed it to cook for another 3-5 minutes and voila!!  Dinner was served!
As I said, I've made this over a dozen times already.  It's so quick and the items so interchangeable that there are so many options to choose from!  I listed the recipe with the amounts as stated but, for my family, I actually doubled the recipe.  It stated that it was a 6 serving meal but just my husband and myself could kill one bag!  So the meal originally listed the calories as 161/serving, however, taking one bag each for all four of us changed the calories to 483 calories/serving.  My guess is that the calories were also lessened due to using cooking spray instead of the oil for each veggie, but I'm not quite sure what that would lessen it to!  :/  It was also only $0.36/serving (this is based on the 6 serving total.  If you eat like we do, then making it 2 servings would make it about $1.15/serving).  I know, right?
Here's the recipe!

2 (3 ounce) packages Oriental flavored ramen noodles
3 eggs, beaten
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1 small carrot, peeled and grated
1/2 cup frozen green peas
1/4 cup red bell pepper, minced
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon vegetable
soy sauce

Happy cooking everyone!!!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Happy Easter: Herb and Garlic Crusted Beef Rib Roast with Slow Cooker Brown-Sugared Baby Carrots

Okay, so I'm aware I'm WAYYYYYYYYY behind on my Easter post, but bare with me.  It has been a busy month and a half!!!
This meal was delicious and, actually, really easy because I didn't have to pay to much attention to it in order to get an amazing meal!
So I started with my side first, as that was going to take longer.  The recipe for this I originally got from Pillsbury and it was delicious!  I remember when I was younger, my sister used to always make this carrot dish as a side that was sweet and soooo yummy, but she would never tell me her secret!  When I saw this I knew I had to make it in hopes that it would match her dish!
So first thing's first: I sprayed my slow cooker with some cooking spray and placed a 16 ounce bag of baby carrots into it (the original recipe called for 32 ounces but there were only four of us, I certainly didn't need THAT much!).  Then I sprinkle the carrots with 1/4 teaspoon salt (all of these measurements are half of what the actual recipe states but, not to worry, I will put the full amount below!), 1/4 cup packed brown sugar and 1 tablespoon of butter.  Then I covered that, set it on high and let it cook while I prepped and cooked the roast.  Make sure after it cooks for about two hours to stir it!
So for the roast, the original recipe I got was from Betty Crocker again (boy do I love her or what?) and it was super easy to make!
First thing's first: I preheat my oven to 350 degrees and lined my roasting pan with foil.  I put the roast in the pan with the fat side up and then, in a separate bowl, mixed 2 teaspoons (each) of dried basil and thyme, 1 teaspoon (each) of Kosher salt and garlic powder and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper.  I rubbed it into the roast and then put it in the preheated oven for about 2 hours.  Make sure to check the temperature for your roast as it needs to read 135 degrees to be done and oven temperatures vary, so the time could be more or less depending on your oven!
I let that rest with foil over it for about 15 minutes until the temperature read 145 degrees (this was for medium rare.  If you'd like medium, it needs to stay covered until it reads 150 degrees).
Once the meat was rested and the carrots were cooked, I sliced the beef and spooned the carrots onto the plate, adding the juices and 1 tablespoon of fresh chopped parsley and voila!!  Dinner was served!  This meal was soooo yummy, seriously.  The roast was 340 calories/serving (it made 8 servings so there was extras yay!) and the carrots were only 100 calories/serving (this one made 5 servings as I had cut it in half like I mentioned earlier) so total it was only 440 calories!  Woo!  It was also only $2.16/serving and that's with BOTH the roast and the carrots!
Here's the recipe!!

1 beef rib roast (4-6 pounds)
2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 bag (32 ounces) baby carrots
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley

Happy cooking everyone and happy belated Easter!

Slow Cooker Polynesian Pork Ribs

Okay, so, surprisingly (although maybe not!) being from Hawaii I am not particularly fond of pineapple.  I blame my mother entirely for that, as that was all she said she ate when she was pregnant with me!  :)
HOWEVER, I definitely try not to punish my family by not feeding them the things I don't like.  So on this meal, I sucked up my issues with pineapple and went ahead with it.  It wasn't the best thing I've ever tasted, but again, I don't like pineapple.  My family said that it was delicious, so you try for yourself and let me know!
This meal I got originally from Betty Crocker and anything that allows me to dump things in a bowl and let it cook on its own is fine by me!
So first thing's first: The original recipe stated to put a slow cooker liner in the slow cooker bowl, but I just used some cooking spray, which worked fine.  Then I finely chopped 1 clove of garlic (or you can use the jarred kind if that suits your needs.  I like to use the fresh stuff!), sliced 1 small onion and added those to the slow cooker, along with 2 pounds of boneless pork ribs.  I then took half of an 8 ounce can of crushed pineapple and spooned it over the ribs, reserving the remaining for later.  Then I set that on low and let it cook for about 9 hours.
When I got home from work, I drained the juices from the slow cooker.  In a separate bowl I mixed 3/4 cup of ketchup, 3 tablespoons of packed brown sugar, 3 tablespoons of hoisin sauce, 1 teaspoon of freshly grated ginger root and the remaining pineapple, pouring it over the cooked ribs.  Then I set that to high and allowed it to cook for another 25 minutes.
While that was heating, I cooked some rice and when it was done, voila!  Dinner was served!
To be honest, the meal was pretty good but I've always been weird about the sweetness that the pineapple brings to savory foods.  I like my savory to stay savory, but, luckily for me, the meal didn't taste that much like pineapple it was just sweet.  The meal was only 390 calories per serving (it was a six serving meal yay!) and $1.85/serving!  Woo!!
Here's the recipe!!!

2 pounds boneless pork loin ribs
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 small onion, sliced
1 can (8 ounces) crushed pineapple in juice, undrained

3/4 cup ketchup
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger root
Cooked rice

Happy cooking everyone!!!