Super easy weeknight meal. Something about winter makes me want to cook casseroles several times a week so look for more casseroles coming soon! 🙂 This one is delicious and easy. Think of a deconstructed stuffed bell pepper.
1 lb ground beef (I used 90/10)
2 med bell peppers, chopped – can used any color! I like yellow and red
1/2 medium onion or 1 small onion, chopped
3 cloves minced garlic or to taste
2 cups cooked rice (can use brown, jasmine or any rice you prefer really!)
1 jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce
1/4 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
1/2 to 1 cup shredded mozzarella
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook meat until almost completely browned. Drain. Place beef back in pan and add peppers, onion powder, and minced garlic. Cook over medium-low heat until beef in completely cooked and peppers begin to turn tender. In a large mixing bowl combine the meat, onion, and pepper mixture with the cooked rice, Italian seasoning, and sauce. Mix well. Pour into 2 1/2 quart casserole dish. Sprinkle cheese on top. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until heated through and cheese begins to brown. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.
Slow Cooker Beef Stew
I found this comforting winter meal on movitabeaucoup.com. To make it even easier I got the precut, pre washed carrots, celery and potatoes at my local Wegmans market. I also went with the precut beef stew meat from the butcher section. As a vegetarian alternative you could use fava beans or red kidney beans instead of the beef.
2 lbs of stewing beef, trimmed and cut into 1 inch cubes
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 medium sized onions, chopped into medium pieces
2 – 3 ribs celery, chopped
4 – 6 carrots, chopped
4 cups chunked potatoes (I used Dutch yellow and did not peel)
1 28 oz. can whole tomatoes (I use plum tomatoes)
1 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
3 cups sodium reduced beef broth, divided
2 bay leaves
1 cup frozen peas
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Croutons: 1 loaf of cheese bread (recipe not included as I got mine at good ol’ Wegmans)
Slice in one inch slices and toast under broiler or in toaster oven. Cut into 1/2 inch to 1 inch squares. Super easy.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and then lightly brown the meat in batches. Transfer browned beef to a plate and set aside.
Dump the tomatoes into the slow cooker (juice and all). Crush them with a potato masher or spoon. Add the onions, celery, carrots and potatoes. Sprinkle the Italian seasoning over the vegetables and then add the beef and any accumulated drippings. Pour 2 1/2 cups of the beef broth over the beef and vegetables. Give the mixture a quick stir. Add the bay leaves.
Cover and cook on low for about 6 – 8 hours.
About 20 minutes before serving, add the frozen peas and salt and pepper. In a small bowl whisk together the flour and remaining 1/2 cup of beef broth, creating a smooth paste. Stir into the stew. Continue cooking until thickened (about 15-20 minutes).
Remove the bay leaves and serve. I served mine with cheese bread croutons. You can not ask for a heartier stew after a long winter day. Thanks again to movitabeaucoup.com for this one!
Mexican Cornbread Casserole
I guess I must be in a Mexican food lazy kind of mood lately because here is another super easy and delicious pantry meal! The spicy heat goes so nicely with the sweetness of the cornbread. To me, this taste combination says warm and yummy comfort food!
1 lb ground beef (95/5 or 90/10 works great)
1 can Rotel
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can creamed corn or regular corn (I happened to have creamed corn so I went with it)
1 packet taco seasoning
2 boxes Jiffy cornbread mix
2/3 cup milk (for cornbread mix)
2/3 cup water (for taco meat)
1-2 cups cheddar or Mexican blend cheese
In sauté pan or skillet cook beef as directed on the taco seasoning packet: brown meat, drain off fat, add 2/3 cup water and powder taco seasoning packet.
While the meat is cooking – in a large bowl mix the two boxes of cornbread mix, two eggs and 2/3 cup milk.
Drain and rinse black beans in a colander. Once rinsed, add the can of Rotel to the colander (do not rinse – only drain). I mix the beans and Rotel together in the colander so it’s easier to add to the dish later.
In a greased casserole dish (I used a 9 x 13 pan) pour enough batter to cover the bottom and set the remaining batter to the side. Layer corn evenly on top of cornbread batter. Once the meat is done layer it evenly on top. Next, layer the black beans and Rotel on top of that. Sprinkle some cheese on top of bean mixture. (I don’t use a lot as you will also sprinkle cheese on the very top.) Lastly, spread the remaining cornbread layer evenly on the top. Try to cover completely and then sprinkle with cheese.
Throw in the oven at 350 for about 45 minutes or until the cornbread is firm and golden on top. Serve with a dollop of sour cream. Enjoy!
Super easy and delicious! You can use any fillings but for this one I used pepperoni and a blend of Italian cheeses.
1 bag/package of pizza dough (I use the fresh dough at our local grocery)
Whatever filling you are using: pepperoni, peppers and onions, beef etc
1-2 cups Italian blend cheese or pizza cheese
Coarsely ground salt, to taste
Dried onions flakes
Egg wash – 1 egg whisked with 1 tablespoon water
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and place dough in the center. Press and pull the dough so it is spread across the baking sheet. Tip: spray hands with cooking spray to help keep the dough from sticking. Once you have the dough spread cover the dough with your fillings. Carefully roll up the dough into a cylinder, pinching the edges to seal. Place the Stromboli seem down on the baking sheet. Brush top with the egg wash and sprinkle with coarsely ground salt and dried onion flakes. Bake at 375 for 30 – 45 minutes. Serve with a salad and you are set!
Side note: the orange tomatoes I used in my salad are called Zima tomatoes. They have a genuine tomato flavor with a nice and subtle sweetness. Perfect for salads or a colorful veggie tray with dip.
This is such an easy pantry meal you don’t have to put much thought into. Perfect for any weeknight dinner. It’s like a deconstructed taco.
1 lb ground beef (I use 90/10)
1 taco seasoning packet
1 jar of your favorite salsa (I used Great Value/Walmart’s black bean and white corn salsa)
1 bag tortilla chips
1 cup cheddar or Mexican blend cheese
Whatever toppings you like on your tacos: cheddar or Mexican blend cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, black or refried beans, black olives, scallions etc
Heat oven to 350 degrees. In sauté pan or skillet cook beef as directed on the taco seasoning packet (ie brown meat, drain off fat, add 2/3 cup water and powder taco seasoning packet). Add the salsa and mix in with the meat.
In casserole dish (I used 2.5 Qt Corningware casserole) put about 2 cups of the broken tortilla chips – enough to cover the bottom well. Top evenly with beef mixture. Sprinkle with about 1 cup cheese. You can really make it your own by adding additional things before topping with cheese like: onions, bellpepper, tomatoes etc.
Bake uncovered 20 to 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly and cheese is melted. Top baked casserole with lettuce, tomato, 1 cup of crushed tortilla chips and top with sour cream.
Super easy and really gives it a different flavor from the traditional taco night.
Crockpot Chicken Taco Soup
This recipe could not be easier and is very tasty! I especially like to have on those cold nights when you don’t feel like doing anything complicated for dinner or if you just need a simple pantry meal.
1-2 lb chicken tenders, I throw them in frozen!
1/2 onion, chopped (can sauté before adding or add raw)
2 cans Rotel
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 block cream cheese, cubed
1 packet Ranch dressing (powder mix)
1/2 to 1 cup chicken stock, if it needs more liquid
You literally just throw everything in the Crockpot and wait. Low at least 6 hours or at least 4 hours on high. I stir everything up about half way through the time. Towards the end just shred the chicken and stir back in and enjoy! Serve with corn bread or tortilla chips. Fritos are also great with this!