Cheesy ‘Chilada Casserole

You may have this recipe if you own a copy of any cookbook that I’ve helped with in the past.  It’s has been a favorite of mine for years.  It is easy enough for a weeknight dinner and delicious enough for a weekend crowd pleaser.  I serve it with lettuce, chopped tomatoes, black olives, green onions, sour cream and salsa.

 

Cheesy 'Chilada Casserole
 
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Ingredients
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 (15-oz.) can pinto beans or black beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 (15-oz.) can tomato sauce
  • 1 c. picante sauce
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 2 c. shredded Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese
  • Topping of your choice: shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, black olives, green onions, sour cream, salsa or picante sauce.
Instructions
  1. Brown meat with onion and garlic, drain well and return meat to pan.
  2. Add beans, tomato sauce, picante sauce, cumin and salt; simmer 15 minutes.
  3. Spoon small amount of meat mixture into a 9 x 13-inch baking dish, spreading to coat bottom of dish.
  4. Top with 6 tortillas. Add half of the remaining meat mixture on top of tortillas. Sprinkle wit 1 cup cheese.
  5. Top with the 6 remaining tortillas. Add remaining meat mixture. Cover lightly with foil.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove foil; top with remaining cheese. Continue to bake, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
  7. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting.
  8. Serve with desired toppings.
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Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie (aka Chocolate Chip Cobbler)

chocolate chip cookie cobbler

This is such a fun dessert.  You mix it in the same skillet that you bake it in so there’s very little mess.  I like to make this for my family and serve it with four spoons.  It’s soft, almost like a cobbler and served with a scoop (or 4) of vanilla ice cream it’s perfect!  Great for game night or any time spent to family or special friends.

 

Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie (aka Chocolate Chip Cobbler)
 
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Ingredients
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • ½ c. granulated sugar
  • ½ c. light brown sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1½ c. all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 c. chocolate chips or chunks
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt butter in an 8-inch cast iron skillet over medium-low heat. Stir in sugars, remove from heat. Let rest until pan is warm, not hot (about 5 minutes).
  3. Crack egg into a small bowl. Beat egg, then add a little of the sugar mixture and whisk together with a fork. Add to skillet and whisk together with fork.
  4. Place flour, baking soda and salt to the top and very carefully stir until smooth and well mixed. Stir in vanilla and chocolate chips or chocolate chunks.
  5. Place in oven for 15 minutes or until starting to turn golden on top and around edges, but soft in the center. (I left mine in oven for about 25 minutes)
  6. Serve warm with ice cream.
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Peanut Butter Finger Bars

My third tailgating recipe is something that I have made longer than any other recipe in my collection.  I made these Peanut Butter Finger Bars all the time when I was a teenager.  My brother and I, along with my cousins that lived next door, loved these things!  I think that’s when my love of cooking started.  Even at a young age I enjoyed making something that others would enjoy.  You can mix these up in no time at all.  The recipe calls for semi-sweet chocolate chips, but use the chips that you like best…milk chocolate or dark chocolate works well too.

Peanut Butter Finger Bars
 
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Ingredients
  • ¾ c. butter
  • ¾ c. creamy peanut butter
  • ¾ c. granulated sugar
  • ¾ c. packed light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1½ c. all-purpose flour
  • 1½ c. oats
  • ¾ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 to 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ½ c. sifted powdered sugar
  • ¼ c. creamy peanut butter
  • 2 to 4 tbsp. milk
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Mix flour, oats, baking soda and salt, set aside.
  3. Mix butter and sugars until creamy. Add eggs and vanilla extract, beating well. Add dry ingredients and mix.
  4. Press into a greased 9 x 13-inch baking dish or pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or just until starting to lightly brown.
  5. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with chocolate chips. Let stand 5 minutes then spread.
  6. To make drizzle, combine powdered sugar, peanut butter and milk. Mix until smooth and drizzle over the top.
  7. Top with chopped peanuts, if desired.
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Slow-Cooker Pork Chops and Peas

I have found my new favorite comfort food.  This dish has “grandma’s cooking” all over it!  I have never been a fan of black eyed peas or pink eyes. That is…until I had them cooked this way.  Pink eyes are Greg’s favorite and he picked up some at the farmer’s market this summer.  I put about 10 quarts in the freezer so I really needed to find a way to cook them that would please everyone.  I don’t want to go on and on about how good this was, but just in case you missed it…this was delicious!  This recipe called for canned black eyed peas, I used frozen pink eyes. By the time it cooks the pork chops fall apart and I served it on top of rice.  If you try this, let me know what you think…I LOVED IT!!! 🙂

 

Slow-Cooker Pork Chops and Peas
 
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Ingredients
  • 8 pork chops
  • 30 oz. canned black eyed peas, drained & rinsed (or 1 qt. frozen)
  • 14 to 15 oz. beef broth
  • 2 beef bouillon cubes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Brown pork chops on both sides in a skillet with a little oil. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper and transfer to a slow-cooker. Add chopped onions, beef broth, and bouillon cubes. Cook on low for 7 hours. Add peas and cook on low for 2 hours.
Notes
I cooked pork chops and peas on high for about 3 hours, added peas and cooked an additional 1½ hours on high.
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Homemade Ranch Dressing

Occasionally, I will have ranch dressing at a restaurant, if it’s homemade, but I’d rather have no dressing than to eat bought ranch.  However, ranch is the pick of my family.  I decided to try making it myself.  Not only did Greg and the kids love it, but I did too!  It is delicious and fresh tasting and it was easy enough that I’ll never have to buy the bottled ranch dressing again.

(Recipe updated 1/26/12)

Homemade Ranch Dressing
 
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Ingredients
  • 1⅓ c. mayonnaise
  • 1 c. sour cream
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. onion powder
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh chives
  • 4 tbsp. buttermilk
  • ½ tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • juice from half lemon
  • freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Mix all ingredients. Store in refrigerator.
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