Chorizo Chicken Burgers

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Can I just say, this burger may not be made from angus or kobe beef, but it is so good! By far the best chicken burger I’ve ever had! I took the original recipe from my favorite food blog annie’s-eats. I added a few more ingredients to make it my own, and to give it more flavor and spice! What I love about burgers is you can make so many unique flavors, for this recipe if you want more heat you can add more jalapeño, or leave it out for a more mellow taste. The chorizo and green chilies I added produce a lot of heat and flavor! I also mixed things up and used a pretzel bun. I found them in the bread aisle, it’s aunt millie’s brand and they turned out great! There’s also a cheese and buffalo brand i will try soon.

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To get started, mix together all of the ingredients in a medium sized bowl. Be careful not to over mix and make sure the ingredients are mixed evenly. The chorizo tends to stick together in clumps so try to get those separated. I find it’s best to use your hands! It may be gross, but it’s the best way to mix the ingredients!

Take a grill pan or non stick skillet and spray lightly with PAM. You do not need to use any oil, the chorizo is oily enough for the burgers to not get stuck in the pan. Cook on medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes on each side. Flipping once to prevent any loss of juices and flavor. With a few minutes left of cooking, add your sliced cheddar cheese and place a lid over top to melt the cheese. I found my burgers to be a bit on the oily side when they were done cooking, so I laid them on paper towels to soak up some of the oil.

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Assemble with toasted pretzel bun, homemade guacamole (here is the link for my holy guacamole! recipe), and salsa! Serve and let your tastebuds go to a happy place!

This recipe makes 4-5 burgers.

What you’ll need:
1 lb. ground chicken
2 links of chorizo, casing removed
½ yellow onion, diced small
1/3 cup minced fresh cilantro
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 jalapeño, seeded, cored and minced well
2 oz.(half a 4oz. can) mild green chilies (I like La Preferida brand comes roasted, peeled, and diced)
1 tsp. cajun seasoning 
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. paprika
Juice of ½ lime
1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese, plus more for topping
½ tsp. kosher salt
½ tsp. pepper
Assembly:
Pretzel bun, or your bun of choice
Sliced cheddar cheese
Holy Guacamole!
Salsa

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Chicken Tamale Casserole

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I was trying to find something different to make for dinner. My husband was stuck at the navy base for a 24 hour watch and I decided to be a lovely little wife and bring him some dinner! I wanted to make something that would be versatile and easy to bring with me in the car and carry. I decided to stick to casseroles and found this amazing recipe on google search. If you like sweet and salty foods, you will love this!

Like most of my meals, this one is pretty easy! Preheat your oven to 400. The longest part is boiling and shredding chicken. Once that is done, mix 1/4 cup of cheese and the next 7 ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Bake in a 13×9 baking dish and place in the oven for 15 minutes. Once baked, take the dish out and poke holes with a fork all around. Then pour your enchilada sauce over top ( the wholes will help the sauce absorb inside). Then sprinkle the shredded chicken on top. After that pour the cheese over top, I also added some queso on top for some extra flavor (and calories and fat, but who’s counting?!)

Place back in the oven for 15 minutes. Let sit for about 5 minutes. Cut int o squares and serve with a dallop of sour cream and tortilla chips (optional).

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What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup (4 ounces) preshredded 4-cheese Mexican blend cheese, divided
  • 1/3 cup fat-free milk
  • 1/4 cup egg substitute
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1 (14 3/4-ounce) can cream-style corn
  • 1 (8.5-ounce) box corn muffin mix (such as Martha White)
  • 1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles, drained
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 (10-ounce) can red enchilada sauce (such as Old El Paso)
  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast
  • 1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
  • tortilla chips for a good crunch!

Italian Meatball Sliders

Football time is here! This calls for some hearty warm soups, cheesy fattening dips, and yummy appetizers! I made these sliders for a perfect addition on a Sunday filled with football. Messy, cheesy goodness that you eat with your hands, nothing gets any better! I basically took a favorite meatball recipe and added a cube of fresh mozz in the middle. Made the meatballs super large and turned them into sliders! I was able to use my favorite sauce, LaRosas! This meal is super easy to make, and for a lighter finish serve with an italian salad with some feta cheese, tomatoes, and italian dressing.

To get started preheat your oven to 400°. Take a large bowl and combine the onion, seasonings, Worcestershire, egg, parsley, ketchup,  and bread crumbs. Mix together well (i like to use my hands, washed of course!) and form into large fist sized meatballs. Once formed, take a cube of mozz and place in the middle, then form the meat around the cheese placing the cheese in the center. Repeat this until all of your meatballs are formed. Take a  baking sheet and place parchment paper on top. Place the meatballs on the parchment paper. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until browned on the outside and cheese is melting out.

While the meatballs are baking, place your favorite sauce in a saucepan and heat on med-low. Prevent boiling because it will make a mess! Stir occasionally. Take your slider buns and brush with some olive oil. Sprinkle garlic powder and parsley flakes on both sides. At the last 5 minutes of baking place the buns in the oven to toast them.

Assembly is super easy! Take your bun, add your meatball, top with sauce, then a slice of mozz, then a piece of basil and top with the other side of the bun! And it’s that easy, and sooo good! You’re going to need a whole lot of napkins with this meal! But I find that the messiest  sandwiches are always the yummiest! So next football game, sit back, relax, grab a beer and chow down!

What you’ll need:

1 small (6-ounce) onion, grated
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2/3 cup grated Parmensean cheese
1/3 cup Italian-style bread crumbs
1 large egg
2 tablespoons ketchup
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
16 ounces ground beef
2 ounces smoked mozzerella cheese, cut into 16 (1/2-inch) cubes
slider buns
your favorite spaghetti sauce
basil leaves

(*beer and football is optional)

Pimento Cheese Burgers with Fried Green Tomatoes

So one of the many gifts we received for our wedding was a burger press. You place part of the meat on one side and whatever you want to put in the middle, then the another part of the meat on the other side, press and voila!! It’s truly a must-have kitchen staple. It’s available at Williams Sonoma and you could also probably find something similar at Bed Bath and Beyond.

But seriously… go get it!

Heat up your grill (or have your husband do it like me 🙂  ) To get started, take your meat and combine the worcestershire and seasonings in a bowl. Take your meat press, and place a portion of the meat on one side of the press then take the same amount and press on the other side of the press. Take a spoonful of pimento cheese and place in the middle of one side. Then press the two sides together and slide the burger out. If you don’t have a burger press, make a patty with your hands, then add the pimento cheese on top of the burger once it’s cooked.

When the grill is ready place your burgers on the grill and cook to desired wellness.

While the burgers are on the grill, take your green tomatoes and cut thick slices, about 1/4 inch thick. Take a baggie and mix the flours and seasonings. Place a tomato slice and close the baggie, mix well to coat all sides. Repeat until all of the slices are done. Take a skillet with olive oil and turn on med-high heat. Take your tomatoes and cook on the skillet until golden brown on both sides, about 5-10 minutes. Spray with additional olive oil in between batches.

Take your toasted bun and place your lettuce, then burger, then fried green tomatoes. If you don’t have the burger press, add your cheese in between the burger and tomatoes. For a healthier dish, serve with a side salad.

One of the best burgers I’ve had!! The pimento cheese and the fried green tomatoes go perfectly together!! And you don’t need any condiments!

These Southern style burgers will not disappoint!

What you’ll need:
For the burgers:
4 burger buns
4 burger patties, about 1/3 lb each
1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp each of garlic salt, dried minced onion, and cajun
salt and pepper
a spoonful of pimento cheese with jalapenos for each burger
a burger press, if available.
For the fried green tomatoes:
1-2 green tomatoes, sliced 1/2 in thick
2 tbsp flour
2tbsp cornmeal
salt and pepper
olive oil

Seafood Mac-N-Cheese

On a trip home, I happened to meet some friends at a restaurant called Keystone Bar & Grill, famous for their unique mac and cheese and quesadillas. Amazing dishes, so creative and my favorite is their mac and cheese names, such as Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd, Nirvana. I am a huge Classic Rock and Alternative fan, so obviously I loved their food before even tasting it!

I came home and decided I was going to make my own version, not really experienced in the mac and cheese world, I thought I would be safe and look up a mac and cheese recipe to base my dish off of. I decided to use Muenster Cheese because it felt soft and I knew it would melt well. I actually have never had it before so I kind of just winged it at the store! I also bought some Gruyere Cheese because I wanted a little bit of a nutty cheese into the mixture.

From my previous recipe Seafood Quesadillas I had extra shrimp and Mahi Mahi. I thought, this would be super tasty in a mac and cheese dish! I had some bacon I needed to use up, so I added that to give the perfect salty crunch! This dish takes some time to make, but it’s definitely worth it in the end (and even better the next day leftover!)

I start out by whisking my goat cheese (If you don’t like goat cheese, you can substitute with feta or cheddar, or really any cheese you like!) bread crumbs, and bacon. I originally wanted to use panko crumbs, but I forgot to buy some at the store and the bread crumbs worked out great! Preheat your oven to 450º.

Start boiling a large pot of salted water. Cook your noodles according to package directions, you want them to be al dente, as in a little bit undercooked because they will also cook in the oven. Once drained, rinse your pasta with cold water and drain again, this prevents the pasta from sticking. Pour into a large bowl then place your shrimp and mahi and mix well. Set aside.

Start your cheese mixture. My favorite part of mac and cheese is obviously the cheese sauce! And it’s important that you get the right texture! Start by melting the butter on medium, then adding the flour slowly and making sure to whisk constantly to make a clumpy, flour base. Then add your milk, slowly and whisk constantly until you reach a thick consistency. It should stick to the back of a wooden spoon. Next, add your cheeses and mix until melted through. It may take a couple of mixes to break up the cheese and melt. Make sure you give it a taste before deciding it’s good. If it doesn’t taste cheesy enough, add more! If it’s not thick enough, add more flour. Also be sure to not let your mixture boil! This will clump up the flour.

Add all of your sauce into the bowl of pasta. Next add your lemon juice and zest, parsley, garlic powder and pepper. Mix well. (I omitted the salt because of the butter, cheese and bacon.. that’s enough sodium for me!)

Now add your bread crumb mixture evenly over the top of the pasta and place in the oven for 25-30 minutes. I put mine on broil for the last 5 minutes and moved my dish to the top wrack to give it a good crunch on top.

Let sit for 5 minutes to let the flavors and sauce really come together.

I am not lying this is the best homemade mac and cheese I’ve ever had! One of the best surprises in this dish is the slight lemon zest you taste in every bite, it works so well with the seafood and cheese! Unless you absolutely hate seafood or have an allergy, you have to try this dish! And if you don’t like seafood, subtitute with some chicken or sausage. It’s so fun to use your imagination when in the kitchen, and the results are always something to be proud of!

What you’ll need:
13.25 ounces rotini (I used Barilla)
1/2 pound fresh shrimp, peeled with tails removed and cut in half
1/2 fillet of Mahi Mahi, cut into pieces
1 package bacon, cooked crispy and crushed into small peices
A spoonful of herbed goat cheese, crumbled
Zest of 1 large lemon, divided
Juice of the lemon
3/4 cup plain bread crumbs (or panko)
4 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley, divided
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup all-purpose unbleached flour (plus more if needed)
4 cups milk (whole or reduced fat)
2 ounces Gruyère Cheese, grated
8 oz Meunster Cheese, wax cut off (I used Boars Head)
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 to 1 teaspoon fresh black pepper