4 Bean Vegan Chili

Vegetarianchiligraphic

Last week I made some freezer meals for one of my friends who is a new mom. I wanted to make her something hearty, easy to heat up and tasty. The only hitch was she maintains a vegan and gluten-free diet, which made things a little more difficult. After tossing around many (many) different salad ideas I decided to go a different route and make a hearty chili.

The best part is this recipe freezes beautifully and defrosts quickly for an easy dinner. I tripled the recipe and made enough for my friend and two large family-sized servings for my freezer. Curry may seem like an odd spice, but trust me it really works in this recipe!

1 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes

1 can black beans

1 can garbanzo beans

1 can pinto beans

1 can kidney beans

1 can corn

2 tablespoons garlic

1 red onion

1 green bell pepper

1 red bell pepper

1 tablespoon cumin

½ tablespoon curry

2 teaspoons cayenne pepper

 

Dice the bell peppers and red onion, sauté with the garlic until soft and fragrant. Mix in the beans, corn and tomatoes and seasoning. Bring to boil and reduce to a simmer, simmer for a few hours on low and enjoy!

VegtarianChili

Turkey Stroganoff in the Crock Pot

 

 

turkeygraphicI am finally feeling like myself again after being pretty sick for most of the month. Anytime I’m under the weather I crave comfort food from my childhood. Just the smell of certain dishes can evoke the memory of being safe and cared for at home. This month I’ve been revisiting dishes that my mom would make anytime I was sick, I’ve been having a great time sharing the recipes with my family. My toddler really loved this recipe and I caught my husband sneaking leftovers right out of the fridge later that night! Don’t let the simplicity of this recipe fool you, it’s a great easy dinner that everyone will enjoy.

I really don’t even know what to call this dish. I think it was based on a recipe that my grandfather found when he was in the army decades ago, over the years it has changed into the ultimate comfort food. It’s a bit like a stroganoff recipe, but with some extra flavor mixed in.  The ingredients seem boring on their own, but after a few hours in the crock pot they meld into an amazing dish that is perfect over steamed rice or egg noodles. I don’t know if leftovers freeze well, I’ve never had enough to freeze! If anyone tries this as a freezer meal please let me know the results.

 

Ingredients:

1 pound lean ground turkey meat

10 ounces cream of mushroom soup

10 ounces cream of celery soup

½ cup milk

4 stalks of celery, diced

1 small bell pepper, diced

6 ounces mushrooms, diced

½ yellow onion, diced

1 Tablespoon garlic, minced

Brown the turkey on the stovetop, drain any fat.

While the turkey is cooking, dice all vegetables and place them in the crockpot, add the cooked turkey, soup and milk. Cook on low for 5-6 hours or until the vegetables are tender. Garnish with fresh cracked pepper and serve over rice or noodles.

comfortfood

Veggie Filled Meat Sauce – Freezer Cooking February

 

pastasaucegraphic

Freezer cooking is one of the ways that I keep my sanity as a working mom. Having a healthy meal that is all set to pull out of the freezer after a long day at work can be a lifesaver! The next two weeks will be all freezer meals, I made all of them on one day and all the prep was done in less than two hours. I know a lot of people think freezer cooking can be intimidating, but once you get going and get a good routine down it’s so easy!

This recipe is one that I love because it is so flavorful and is full of great vegetables! I use extra lean ground turkey in my meat sauce and load it up with veggies, the result is a heart-healthy dish that the entire family loves. If you family isn’t a fan of veggies, just dice them super fine- the pasta sauce will cover the taste of most of the vegetables. I love using two different kinds of mushrooms because their meaty flavor and texture makes this feel like a true meat sauce.

1 ½ pounds extra lean ground turkey

2 green bell peppers, chopped

1 yellow onion, chopped,

2 tablespoons garlic, chopped

1 cup carrots, chopped

1 cup button mushrooms, sliced

1 cup shitake mushrooms, sliced

2 16 ounce jars of your favorite pasta sauce

meatsauce1

Brown the turkey with the garlic in a pan, drain any fat. In a large pot sauté the bell peppers, onion, carrots, and mushrooms until soft. Combine turkey, vegetables and pasta sauce simmer for 30 minutes. This easily makes 3 very large family servings, freeze the pasta sauce into whatever sized servings work best for you. I love to fill large mason jars with the sauce and fill up the freezer! The sauce can be used to top pasta, as a filling for lasagna or it can be used for a flavorful baked ziti.

meatsauce2

Easy Shrimp Scampi

shrimpscampigraphic

When thinking of what to make my husband for Valentine’s Day this recipe instantly popped into my head. Before my husband I were married we had our wedding rehearsal dinner at a wonderful little Italian restaurant in our city, the food was so delicious but the standout dish was the shrimp scampi. We keep saying that we will go back to the restaurant to celebrate our anniversary or a special occasion, but it just hasn’t happened yet. This has become my go to recipe for any romantic occasion celebrated at home, and it never disappoints.

I love that this dish looks and tastes complicated, but it is so easy to make! I am a huge garlic fan, so feel free to use a little less garlic if you don’t love it as much as I do! I really think this recipe rivals most Italian restaurants, just make sure to serve it right away or the butter sauce may start to clump together. I serve this on some freshly cooked linguine with a Caesar Salad on the side.

8 tablespoons of butter

1 pound shrimp, peeled and with tails removed

3 tablespoons garlic

Juice of 2 lemons

Splash of dry white wine

Cooked pasta

shrimpscampi1

Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a pan, add garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add raw shrimp and cook until pink.

shrimpscampi2

Add the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter, juice of two lemons and a splash of dry white wine (I find 2-3 tablespoons is plenty). Sauté 5 minutes or until butter is completely melted and the flavors have mixed together.

Serve over your favorite pasta.

shrimpscampi3