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It is here! It is here! The recipe for the Creamy Cheddar Potato Soup you all have been asking for. I shared this soup a few months ago on my Instagram Stories just to see if you guys would like it. It was my first time using the Stories as a way to "cook" with you all and walk you through a recipe. I though it was so much fun and everyone loved it. The problem was, the stories disappear after being up for 24 hours. So people who didn't watch from the get-go were missing out. I ended up getting tons of emails and Instagram comments asking for "that soup you made on Instagram." So, since this recipe was in such high demand I decided to put it here on the blog. At the end of this blog post you will find the recipe which you can even print if you'd like to keep handy in your kitchen.
This soup recipe is a staple for my family, especially during the Winter months. It is hearty, decadent and just comforting all around. The best part truly is that you can whip this soup up in less than an hour! Which, come the end of the day, an easy dinner is life changing!
Ok enough talking ... here is the recipe friends! Enjoy :)
Photos by Lily Ro Photography
CREAMY CHEDDAR POTATO SOUP
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 servings of soup
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 onion finely diced
6 medium sized yellow potatoes diced into bite sized pieces. *You can peel them if you'd like. We keep the skins on.
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 teaspoon salt + 2 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons fresh parsley finely chopped
2 tablespoons corn starch mixed with 2 tablespoons of water
6 tablespoons of softened cream cheese cut into small cubes
1 cup extra sharp cheddar shredded
2 cups half & half
1 cup of corn
2 garlic cloves grated or finely chopped
3 green onions chopped for garnish
* To make this soup vegetarian use vegetable stock instead of chicken stock!
In a large stock pot on medium heat melt your butter. Once better is melted, add your onions, salt, pepper and garlic. With a wooden spoon, stir and cook down the onions until they are opaque or see through.
Once the onions are cooked down, add your potatoes and chicken stock. Bring everything to a low boil and cook until the potatoes are fork tender. This takes about 8-10 minutes. Once you stick a fork easily in and out of a potato you know it is time to move on to the next step.
While the potatoes are cooking, mix together your corn starch and water in a small bowl. Set the mixture aside.This little mixture is very important as it will make your soup nice and thick as well as help bring all the soup ingredients together.
Also while the potatoes are cooking gather and prep the rest of your ingredients. Chop your parsley, cube the cream cheese, measure out the shredded cheddar cheese, half & half and corn. You can also start to cook off some bacon for a savory soup topping!
Once the potatoes are fork tender stir in the corn starch mixture and half & half.
Now add your softened cubed cream cheese. It is important to add the cream cheese when it is soft so it melts evenly into the soup. That is also why you add it in small cubes rather than in giant pieces. Keep stirring the soup until the cream cheese is fully melted.
Next add your cheddar cheese. Again, keep stirring until the cheese has fully melted.
At this point you can either keep the soup chunky as is OR place it into a blender and blend it for a smooth soup. This move is totally up to you and what texture you enjoy most. I will say, in our house we like it chunky ;)
Now, add the corn and fresh parsley. Stir and serve hot. Top with crispy bacon and additional cheese + parsley or chopped green onions.
Store extras in an air tight container for up to 3 days.
Anyone else feel like making dinner every night can be a bit (aka very) stressful at times? Even for me, I love to be in the kitchen! However, coming up with dinner every night can get to be a bit much especially after a long day. Even a long day when Mila and I only went for a walk and a Target run. I’m just being real here. I have really great weeks when things are working like a machine. Dan and I stay on top of our joint Google calendar, I’ve prepped dinner ideas on Sunday like a boss and come the end of the day I get a second wind. BUT there are some weeks when things aren’t working, Dan and I are confused about our daily schedules, I’ve skipped any sort of meal planning and ordering take out becomes our back up plan. Like most things for me, organization comes in waves and I either hit a home run or foul ball. I can’t be the only one right?
Again with the honesty thing, lately I’ve felt more like a mess than anything and dinner around these parts have been cereal, salad or ya, take out. So, I’ve been trying to kick my own ass into shape and what it comes down to is … Is it easy? If not, I’m not doing it! Last week I focused on dinners that took 30 minutes or less to make and I also gave my husband the task of dishes. Which quite possibly is the equivalent to a home run in my opinion. I HATE doing dishes. It is that whole, asking for help thing. I hate to do it because I want to do everything myself. But when I do everything myself I get a crazed look in my eye and end up running around the house throwing things back in their place. Mumbling "I am the only one around who cares!" Which isn't true, so Dan does the dishes now. End of story.
I am combing through my dinner recipes and adding new twists to things I already know how to make. I’ve also taken to sharing quick dinner ideas via my Instagram stories (@babyboybakery) if you are interested. Plus, the recipe here today Quick Turkey Meatballs is a family staple and I think it could become one in your house too! Back to creating twists on things we already know how to make, I think that is KEY. Why try to learn a whole new recipe when we can take what we know and just switch up the protein, add a veggie or grain, take away the carb and toss it on a bed of greens? Life is hard you guys and all about improvising! Let’s improvise dinner!
Ok, some tips you can follow when you have the headspace to …
-Meal Plan On Sundays. Yes, this is great! When I can I like to plan our meals for the week. Take inventory on what you have in pantry and grab the groceries you need to make said week night meals. Sometimes its fun to write out the weekly menu and post it on the refrigerator or somewhere in the kitchen. Doing that is fun for the kids to see what they are having for dinner. (and also holds you accountable ;)
-Pasta, Spinach, Quinoa or Rice. These things I always try to have on hand. To me adding one of these can instantly make food a meal. To make these more interesting, try making your rice or quinoa with chicken stock and a couple of chopped garlic cloves and use sea salt when boiling your pasta. I’ve made the switch from iceberg and romaine to spinach in our home because it packs more of of a nutritional punch. Plus when in doubt make it a salad!
-Brinner. This one I think most families are familiar with. As a kid I used to LOVE when my mom made breakfast for dinner, ‘Brinner’. Pancakes, scrambled eggs anything goes when it is Brinner!
-Dinner On A Platter. You know those fancy cheese boards? Those can be such a fun and easy dinner. On a giant cutting board slice cheeses, add meats, grapes, olives, crackers basically whatever it is your family loves to snack on. Be sure to include nice and filling things on there with hints of fun too like chocolate covered raisins or candied nuts. Is it dinner? If it has protein, dairy and a vegetable it is dinner. Also, you make the rules in your house! If you say its dinner, it is dinner!
-Don’t Sweat It. A lot of the time I find myself apologizing to Dan about dinner. I’ll say things like “I’m sorry about dinner.” “I’m sorry I didn’t make dinner tonight.” or “Is it OK? I know its just rice and grilled chicken.” and Dan 100% of the time is like “I don’t care! It is good!” So, I’m finding out that it is me who puts the pressure on myself. I’m trying hard to loosen up and be nice to myself. If dinner isn’t going to happen, it isn’t the end of the world and take out can be fun sometimes! Also, you aren’t a bad mom if your kids eat goldfish crackers and cheese for dinner one night. To me that is awesome and says, “You are doing life mama! Keep pushing because what you are doing is enough.”
Happy Weeknight Dinners Friends! Try my recipe below for the easiest Turkey Meatballs and add them to your week day dinner arsenal.
QUICK TURKEY MEATBALLS
Prep time: 10 Minutes
Cook time: 30 Minutes
Servings: 15-20 Meatballs
1 pound ground turkey
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 finely chopped or grated yellow onion
2 garlic cloves finely chopped or grated
2 tablespoons chopped FRESH parsley
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon dried oregano
4 tablespoons olive oil (3 for the meatball mixture, 1 to top the meatballs prior to going in oven)
shaved Parmesan cheese to top meatballs *optional
hearty pinch of salt and pepper
You can whatever type % lean ground turkey you'd like.
Start by pre-heating your oven to 375 degrees and prep a baking sheet with either non-stick cooking spray, parchment paper or a silicon baking mat.
Next prep all your ingredients. Place your ground turkey in a large mixing bowl. Chop your parsley. Finely dice or grate your onion and garlic. I have found that grating these offers a nice texture and flavor through out the meatballs. Measure your breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, herbs and spices.
Add all your ingredients into the large mixing bowl with your ground turkey. Add the egg and 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
You can use a wooden spoon to mix, but I think using your hands is easier. Try mixing everything until just combined. If you over mix the turkey mixture it could make your meatballs a little too dense.
I use an ice scream scoop to measure out each meatball. Then form them into a ball with the palms of my hands.
Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil over all the meatballs. Bake at 375 degrees until golden brown and cooked through. These typically take around 25 or 30 minutes and I like to rotate each one in the middle of their bake time.
Enjoy with marinara sauce and toasted bread. I love to double this recipe and freeze the meatballs to defrost for quick lunch and dinners too. If you freeze, be sure to store in an air tight container for up to two weeks.
With Mila being one year now and fully interested in solid foods, our run with purees have sadly come to an end. Making baby food is seriously one of my most favorite hobbies. I’ll miss blending up goodness for Mila, though I have to say she seems more excited about “real” food. My baby sure does love to eat and I thank my lucky stars everyday. I'm sure her picky stage will sneak up on us at some point.
Though Mila adores any type of chicken nugget, I put together this recipe in honor of my littlest brother Jacob. My brother Jacob is now 21 and very much a mans man. But I love remembering those simpler days when my sister and I tormented him! Jacob was basically our doll and we may have loved messing with him too much. ;) Anyways, ever since he was a toddler he was obsessed with chicken nuggets and for a few years it was all he ate. Honest, ask my mom. That was all she could get into his lanky frame. Chicken nuggets smothered in BBQ sauce. Now a days he eats anything, but I bet bite sized chicken would still be on his favorites list. Today I'm showing you how we make our own version of tasty bite sized chicken. I keep the dredge and coating pretty minimal. Plus, I bake them rather than fry to keep them more on the healthy side. (This recipe is also gluten free and dairy free.) These are pretty simple and quick to throw together too. Be sure to have these ingredients on hand because in a pinch you can throw together Crispy Baked Chicken Bites and your family will totally love it! Enjoy!
CRISPY BAKED CHICKEN BITES
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Servings: 25-30 bite sized pieces
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 tsp each of salt & pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tbs olive oil
2 cups corn flake cereal
1 cup any dairy option. (I used dairy-free Lactaid)
You'll need a baking sheet lined with silicon mat or a layer of parchment paper
Dice your chicken breasts into bite sized pieces. Be sure to dice each piece around the same size so they all finish baking at the same time.
For this recipe I used a dairy free substitute - Lactaid. However, you can use whatever dairy option you wish. Mix the chicken and your milk option in a bowl. Let the two sit for at least 10 minutes. Use a spoon to be sure your milk option coats all the chicken bites.
In another bowl, use your hand to crush the corn flake cereal. You'll want to use your hand and not a grinder or smash them with anything. This way you get a nice coating texture, rather than a fine dust. Crush the cereal until the flakes are a uniform texture. Add in your salt, pepper and garlic powder.
Pre-Heat your oven to 350 degrees and ready a baking sheet with a silicon baking mat or with a layer of parchment paper.
Set up an assembly line! Start with your dredged chicken, your cereal coating and end with your baking mat. Take one piece of chicken at a time and coat it in the crushed cereal then line them up on the baking sheet.
Use a fork to help you coat your chicken pieces and place them on the baking sheet. This way your hands stay clean
Drizzle the olive oil over the chicken.
Bake for about 20 minutes or until crisp and the chicken is cooked through.
Enjoy! These don't store well, so enjoy within the same day.
I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving! My family always either makes turkey sliders with our left over Thanksgiving turkey or mini turkey pot pies. I am partial to the pot pies and we have a pretty simple recipe. I wanted to share it with you all in case you needed a yummy idea. Enjoy friends!
TURKEY POT PIE
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8 mini pies or 1 large pie
2-3 cups left over Thanksgiving turkey either diced or shredded.
pre-made pie dough (2 rolls)
1 diced onion
2 chicken bouillon cubes
5 cups of chicken stock
2 sticks of butter
3/4 cup flour
1/4 heavy cream
3 peeled and diced carrots
1 cup peas
5-6 small red potatoes diced
1 cup corn
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1 teaspoon pepper or more to taste
In a small saucepan warm the chicken stock and dissolve the chicken bouillon cubes.
In large pot melt the butter and sauté the onions for about 10 minutes or until extremely soft and see through.
Whisk in the flour and continuously whisk for 3 minutes. If it seems too dry add a tablespoon more of butter. Whisk the flour until it dissolved and cooks within the butter.
Pour in the warm flavored chicken stock and whisk for another minute or so or until thick. Add in; salt and pepper to taste, heavy cream, turkey, carrots, potatoes, corn, peas and parsley.
Cook the pot pie mixture until the carrots and potatoes are fork tender.
Add the pot pie mixture into a pie pan or small ramekins.
Roll out your pie dough and cut out dough circles that fit on top of your pies. Punch out a cute shape to make a vent for your pie.
Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.
Crack an egg and whisk it. Use a pastry brush and brush the tops of your pies.
Bake your pies for about 20 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly.
Enjoy right away. Store unbaked pies for up to a week in the fridge.