Layered Taco Dip

This taco dip is an old family favorite and one we used to take to youth group and other events all the time. Even though we always hoped there would be some left, the dish was usually licked clean. It’s the perfect appetizer or snack for any event – time to start planning that Super Bowl party!

Layered Taco Dip

Ingredients:
1 (8 oz) can refried beans
hot sauce, to taste
1 tsp cumin
1 cup  guacamole
1 cup sour cream
2 cups salsa
1 cup Mexican cheese, shredded
1 (6 oz) can chopped olives
1/4 cup green onions, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
tortilla chips

Directions:
Throw the refried beans in a small pan over medium-low heat. Add a few dashes of hot sauce. Stir well. Add the cumin.
Spread the beans in the bottom of a 9×13 glass dish. Next, layer the guacamole over the beans, then the sour cream. Spread the salsa over the sour cream.
Sprinkle on the cheese, olives, green onions and tomato. Refrigerate 1 hour before serving with tortilla chips.

Enjoy and try not to eat the whole dish yourself!

Five on Friday [fall soup edition] // 10-21-16

The crockpot is on low, the soup is simmering and my home smells delicious. It’s soup season!
Here are some of my favorite fall soups, once again courtesy of my Pinterest page.

Seriously, The Best Healthy Turkey Chili - Perfectly spiced healthy chili made with lean ground turkey, kidney beans and corn.:

ONE // Chili. I finally found my favorite chili recipe, that I still like to tweak a little every time I make it.

Olive Garden Zuppa Toscana Copycat Recipe - This copycat recipe is so easy to make and tastes a million times better than the original!TWO // Zuppa Toscana. This is one of my all-time favorites. Whenever we {rarely} go to Olive Garden, this is a must have.

Creamy Chicken and Corn Soup with Potato and Bacon.:
THREE // Creamy Chicken Corn Chowder. I haven’t actually made this one yet, but it’s on my list!

5-Ingredient Easy White Chicken Chili -- make it in the slow cooker or on the stovetop in minutes! | gimmesomeoven.comFOUR // White Chicken Chili. Sometimes is like white chicken chili better than red chili.

Super quick and delicious thai coconut soup packed with rice and chicken. Definitely a winner!FIVE // Thai Coconut Soup. I’ve only made this once, and it was delicious and I definitely need to make it again soon!

What is your favorite soup?

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Flatbread Chicken Pizza

As much as I love to cook, there’s nothing I love more than a quick and easy meal after a long work day. This easy flatbread pizza definitely takes the cake. The best thing is, that depending on whatever I have on hand, I can always switch up the toppings!

dsc_1813dsc_1821Flatbread Chicken Pizza

Ingredients:
4 Naan breads
1/2 cup ranch dressing
2 tbsp hot sauce
1 chicken breast, grilled and chopped
1/4 cup bacon
1 cup black beans
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1/2 yellow pepper, chopped
1/2 scallions, chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350F. Place the naan on two baking trays. Mix together the ranch dressing and hot sauce and spread over the naan. Scatter the rest of the ingredients, saving the cheese for last, over the top. Bake for 7-9 minutes until the cheese is golden brown and bubbly. Serves 4 (unless you’re super hungry).
Enjoy!

*for this photoshoot, I didn’t have red or yellow peppers, which I normally like to use since they are sweeter than green*dsc_1846

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Creamy Cucumber Salad

It’s Recipe Wednesday!
If you like cucumbers, you will love this salad. I like making this during the summer, but it’s great any time of the year. A perfect side dish for a cookout or potluck.img_4568Creamy Cucumber Salad

Ingredients:
2 large cucumbers
½ cup sour cream
¼  cup natural yogurt
2 tbsp dry ranch dressing
1 tsp dried dill weed
1 tsp chopped fresh parsley parsley (optional)
½ tsp  lemon juice

Directions:
Peel and slice the cucumbers into very thin slivers and place in a large bowl or serving dish. In a small mixing bowl, mix together the rest of the ingredients, then pour over the sliced cucumbers and stir well.
Enjoy!

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Frozen Watermelon & Strawberry Lemonade

IMG_4012Recently we had a huge watermelon that we weren’t eating fast enough. I didn’t want it to go bad, so I cut up half of it and threw it in the freezer to make this simple satisfying and refreshing summer treat. Trust me, you’ll want to make it with this crazy heat wave going on right now.

Frozen Watermelon & Strawberry Lemonade 

Ingredients:
2 cups frozen watermelon
1 cup frozen strawberries
2 tbsp lemon juice (I use 1 whole lemon)
1 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
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Directions:
Throw everything into a blender and blend until smooth. Pour and enjoy!

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Five on Friday // 4-15-16

Happy Friday!
This week I’m going to switch it up and post 5 top Pinterest recipes I want to try out in the next couple of weeks. Hopefully you won’t get too hungry looking at these like I am.

DSC_4339ONE // Cap’n Crunch Chicken Strips. I love Cap’n Crunch Cereal (the berry kind) and chicken, so why not combine the two?

PEANUT BUTTER BUTTERFINGER COOKIES | www.togetherasfamily.com: TWO // Peanut Butter Butterfinger Cookies. Butterfingers are my favorite candy bar. Can’t wait to make these this weekend!

BETTER-THAN-TAKEOUT PAD THAI from Rachel Schultz: THREE // Better-Than-Takeout Pad Thai. Loren recently introduced me to Pad Thai. It’s amazing. And since we can’t get take out every day, might as well try to make it at home.

Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup: FOUR // Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup. Anything southwestern/Mexican is a fave in my book. This might be another recipe for this weekend!

Spaghetti Squash Burrito Bowl- these burrito bowls VEGAN, easy to throw together, and SO very filling.: FIVE // Spaghetti Squash Burrito Bowls. See #4. We tend to eat burrito bowls once a week because they are cheap and delicious, but maybe a healthier version will be just as good.

What are some recipes you want to try?

I am actually home this weekend AND it’s supposed to be in the mid 70’s and sunny, and I plan to take full advantage of that.
Have a fantastic weekend!

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Stuffed Peppers

We love stuffed peppers. And they are pretty quick & easy to make! That seems to be my theme around here when it comes to cooking.
As much as I love green peppers, when it comes to making stuffed peppers, I like to use red, orange or yellow bell peppers, as they are sweeter and soften a little easier than green.

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Stuffed Peppers

Ingredients:
1 lb ground turkey
2 tsp taco seasoning
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
1 orange pepper
salt & pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cups cooked rice (I usually use leftover rice
from the previous night’s dinner)
2 tbsp salsa
1/4 c sour cream
3 tbsp green onions, chopped
2 tbsp parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375°. Brown the turkey. Drain, add taco seasoning and set aside. Slice the peppers in half, remove seeds and membranes and place in greased 9×9 dish. Drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until slightly soft. In a medium bowl, mix together rice, browned turkey, salsa, sour cream, green onions and parmesan cheese. Stuff the mixture in softened peppers and top with shredded cheese. Place any remaining rice mixture in the bottom of the pan and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese in melted. Serves 2-3.
Enjoy!

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Slow Cooker Black Beans & Rice

Growing up, we used to eat black beans over rice about once a week. We would pile on the salsa, sour cream, cheese and other toppings and shovel it in with tortilla chips. Cheap and delicious and the closest we came to burrito bowls over in Germany. The cheap factor (and I love all the flavor!) is one reason I serve this meal in my home now about once a week.
About once a month, I make a big 2 lbs. bag of black beans in the slow cooker and freeze meal-size portions in sandwich bags to use throughout the month. I like to also use the beans for chili, quesadillas, turkey & bean pitas, spaghetti sauce and a number of other things.

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Slow Cooker Black Beans w/Rice

Ingredients:
2 lbs black beans, rinsed & drained
12 cups water
1 onions, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp chili powder
1 tbsp salt

Directions:
Rinse & drain the beans, sorting out any small stones, broken, wrinkled, or otherwise misshapen beans. Place all the ingredients except salt in a slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours (high for 3 hours). Add salt, stir well and let cook for 30 more minutes. Serve over rice and add toppings of choice.

Toppings:
cooked rice
shredded cheese
salsa
sour cream
fresh diced tomatoes
scallions
shredded lettuce
roasted peppers
tortilla chips

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Enjoy!

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Chicken Alfredo Broccoli Pizza

We had Chicken Alfredo for dinner the other night and had lots of leftovers. Sunday evening is usually some form of pizza night, and I thought “Why not make Chicken Alfredo Broccoli Pizza!” Best decision I’ve ever made in the pizza department. Since I used leftover sauce, putting my pizza together was a little simpler, but here is my recipe. And don’t let the broccoli throw you off. My husband generally prefers not to partake in broccoli consumption, but he was definitely a fan of it as a topping on this pizza.

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Chicken Alfredo Broccoli Pizza

Ingredients:
1 (16 inch) pre-made pizza crust (I use this recipe because I have the worst luck with yeast)
1 jar Alfredo sauce
1 chicken breast, grilled
1 cup Mozzarella or cheddar cheese
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1 cup broccoli florets

Directions:
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Lay out pizza crust on a 16” pizza pan. Spread on the Alfredo sauce. Top with chicken and broccoli florets. Top with cheese. Bake for 20 minutes or until the crust is browned.
(Makes 4 Servings)
So simple, so delicious!
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Easy Peanut Butter Cookies (Gluten Free)

My dislike for chocolate is balanced out in my love for peanut butter, probably due to making these delicious cookies often from the time I was around 7 years old. My mama taught me this simple recipe years ago and it has never failed to please a crowd. Can’t go wrong with peanut butter and sugar, right? 

EASY PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES

Ingredients:
3 eggs
3 cups peanut butter
3 cups sugar
3 tsp vanilla 

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375. Blend all ingredients together until evenly mixed. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Roll the dough into 1 inch balls and place on baking sheets. Flatten each ball with a fork, creating a crisscross pattern. Bake 8-10 minutes or until cookies begin to brown.
Makes 3 dozen cookies.
Enjoy!

**This last time I made these cookies, I added Reese’s Pieces to make them even better.