Make Ahead

slow cooker carnitas tacos

Slow Cooker Carnitas Tacos

By | Dinner, Make Ahead, Recipes | No Comments

Do you like tacos? Slow cooker carnitas tacos? Not “every Tuesday is taco Tuesday” kind of like, but “I could (and just did) eat tacos four times (or more) in a week” kind of like. We’re big fans of tacos around here. While living in Austin for six years, I learned that there is more to tacos than ground beef and a seasoning pack. Last week I made this slow cooker carnitas recipe. It makes a ton of carnitas, so we had carnitas tacos several times last week. Then we went to Austin, Texas to visit some friends. And ate more tacos. This carnitas recipe makes tacos that are on par with the tacos I get in Austin. My favorite taco is The Otto from Taco Deli “organic refried black beans, double bacon, avocado, jack cheese”. I usually ask them to leave off the cheese. There’s already enough creaminess happening…

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Squash Quinoa Bowl

Squash Quinoa Bowl with Creamy Cashew Sauce

By | Lunch, Make Ahead, Quick and Easy, Recipes, Vegetarian | No Comments

This Squash Quinoa Bowl with Creamy Cashew Sauce has been on a regular rotation the past few months and without fail colleagues comment on my lunch: “Your lunch is beautiful!” “That looks so healthy and delicious!” “What a fancy lunch!” They are right. This Squash Quinoa Bowl with Creamy Cashew Sauce it beautiful. It is healthy. It is delicious! And it looks like a fancy lunch, but it doesn’t take a lot of time to prepare. I spent 25 minutes on Sunday making lunch for the week. And it makes me happy. It reminds me of our trip to Seattle last summer. I love books and usually try to find a unique bookstore to visit when I travel. Imagine my joy when I stumbled on the Book Larder. Not only is it a bookstore, but it’s a bookstore with only cookbooks and other food books. Don’t do what I did….

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Slow cooker spiced applesauce

Easy Slow Cooker Spiced Applesauce

By | Make Ahead, Quick and Easy, Recipes, Snacks | No Comments

This slow cooker spiced applesauce makes me happy. I’ve made it a few times this fall and winter and it disappears quickly. My husband and I find ourselves dipping into the applesauce for an after dinner dessert. Unlike many jarred applesauce this one is sweetened purely by the apples. The first time I experimented with making slow cooker applesauce is when I brought home a bunch of apples I bought at the grocery on sale. They were beautiful, but when I cut into them not so beautiful… BUT they weren’t bad apples. They were just destined for other greatness! This applesauce is the perfect way to use apples that might be a little discolored, mealy, or otherwise not appetizing. And it’s easy. Seriously easy. Don’t be intimidated by the slow cooker time. It takes very little hands on time to make slow cooker applesauce. Plus, while it’s cooking in the…

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chicken and wild rice soup

Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

By | Dinner, Lunch, Make Ahead, Recipes | No Comments

As soon as fall arrives, I’m ready for soup. Some soups are quick and easy, others can be made with minimal effort in the slow cooker, and then there are soups like this one. They take a little more time to prepare, but I still see it as a win, because this recipes make a ton and the soup freezes well. We usually eat about half of it when I make it an then I put the other half into containers to freeze. While this soup takes awhile to make, it’s not a lot of hands on time. In fact, a few weeks ago I got a cold and I picked up the ingredients at the grocery when I picked up some cold medicine. I seldom get a cold or a flu (every other year or so), but when I do it knocks me out. For the first few days…

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tomato soup

Roasted Tomato Soup

By | Dinner, Lunch, Make Ahead, Recipes, Vegetarian | No Comments

A few weeks ago, I made a double batch of this tomato soup and friends brought over fixings for creative grilled cheese sandwiches. White cheddar and green apple? Delicious! Shallots and sharp cheddar? Yum! Grilled cheese may not be the healthiest of foods, but it sure beats a lot of options for weekend game night foods. We stood around the kitchen and dipped grilled cheese sandwiches, hot off the pan, into small bowls of this delicious soup. My kitchen is tiny and there are no seats, but not one of the eight of us moved from the kitchen. It was just that good! Usually when I make this soup, I skip the grilled cheese and pair it with a simple side salad and crusty bread. If you’ve got a grilled cheese on the brain now, try putting some of those grilled cheese fixings in your salad. Spinach, shallots, green apple,…

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Spicy Curried Chicken Salad

Spicy Curried Chicken Salad

By | Dinner, Lunch, Make Ahead, Quick and Easy, Recipes | No Comments

Several years ago I made this Curried Coconut Chicken Salad recipe and accidentally didn’t follow the directions. (Recipes with divided ingredients get me, because I’m in too much of a rush when cooking dinner mid-week.) Even with my mistakes and alterations, it turned out really well! Over the last few years I’ve continued to make a few changes and it’s become a go-to quick recipe at our house. When I make it doesn’t have a dressing; it’s more of chicken salad that you can serve over greens or use to make a sandwich. This comes together really quickly and is even better the second day, so make a chicken or buy a rotisserie chicken and eat some of the meat tonight and then make this Spicy Curried Chicken Salad for tomorrow’s lunch or dinner. In order to keep the mixed greens from getting soggy in a packed lunch, put the…

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Veggies for breakfast in these roasted veggie breakfast tacos

Roasted Veggie Breakfast Tacos with Mint Pepita Sauce

By | Breakfast, Make Ahead, Recipes, Vegetarian | No Comments

Now that we’re well into fall, you’ve probably seem as many pumpkin and pumpkin spiced recipes online as there are leaves in my yard. Fall brings pumpkin mania mostly in the form of roasted pumpkin, but don’t forget about shelled pumpkin seeds. Pepitas (also called pumpkin seeds) have a nutty taste and are great for snacking either raw or roasted. This recipe uses them like a pine nut in a pesto-like sauce. Like many seeds, they have a great flavor and are highly nutritious. Pepitas are an excellent source of protein, fiber, iron, zinc, magnesium, manganese, and niacin.  The key to perfectly roasted sweet potatoes is chopping them into pieces that are the same size. I half the sweet potato, so I have an even cutting surface. Then I slice it into several vertical slices. Then I lay half of the slices down horizontally and make both parallel and perpendicular slices….

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