Instant Pot: Should You Get One?

dinnerBackstory: Cooking and Me….

I’m not the biggest fan of cooking. I like the final product and definitely venture out (all while listening to a podcast or something because I can’t just do one thing at one time), but am not necessarily one to enjoy the process.

Anyway, I get home from the gym after work, between 7-7:30 p.m. many nights of the week. At that point I just want something fast, but I still try my best to eat somewhat healthy.

We’d recently purchased a copper skillet for $7 at Burlington and it was a game changer in terms of quick clean-up.

I am a fan of anything quick.  Continue reading

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Creating a 2016 Cookbook

While I love having everything on my computer, I’m getting back to the basics by creating a tangible cookbook for 2016. Learn what I’m doing!
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Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili

Crockpot chicken taco chiliI’m no chef, as it may be clear from my “cooking adventures.” I am trying to do better though and this Sunday may have been one of my best entrees yet.

My fiancé’s mom gave me her old crock pot probably a year ago.  I had used it once to melt cheese dip, but never for an actual crock pot recipe. Not sure why I hadn’t, but this weekend I gave it a shot with Skinnytaste’s Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili.

I can’t even begin to tell you how amazing it was. I’m not a big fan of onions, tomatoes and a few other things, so here is how I made it. If you love onions, tomatoes and all those other things, take a look at the original recipe.

Rice and cheese are optional. I put “desired amount” for the rice, because you’ll basically pour some of the chili on top of the rice. So essentially it’s however much rice you’d like. Perhaps a half a cup cooked. I’ve yet to try quinoa, but I’m sure that would be a healthier alternative than white rice. If I try it, I’ll post results.

Servings: 10 • Size: 1 1/4 cups • Old Points: 3 pts • Points+: 5 pts
Calories: 203.7 • Fat: 1.4 g • Carb: 33.3 g • Fiber: 10.0 g  • Protein: 16.9 g
(Nutritional information from Skinnytaste, doesn’t include rice or cheese)

Ingredients

  • 1 16-oz can Bush’s black beans (reduced sodium)
  • 1 16-oz can Bush’s kidney beans (reduced sodium)
  • 1 8-oz Hunt’s can tomato sauce
  • 10 oz package frozen corn kernels
  • 1 packet Ortega taco seasoning
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 24 oz (3-4) boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • White rice (optional amount)
  • Taco/mexican blend cheese (optional amount)

Directions

  • Combine beans, corn, tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder and taco seasoning into crockpot
  • Place chicken over the top and cover
  • Cook on low for 10 hours or on high for six hours
  • 30 minutes prior to eating, remove chicken, shred, then put it back into crock pot and stir
  • Cook desired amount of rice (will pour crock pot mixture over prior to serving)
  • Top rice with chili, and sprinkle on cheese

Mashed Cauliflower

I started testing out mashed cauliflower recipes this year.  I didn’t really think about it until I came a crossed it, probably on Pinterest. I was super intrigued by it, hoping it would be a great swap for mashed potatoes.

Backstory: My freshman year of college I had a crazy allergic reaction to everything outside.  I went to the allergist and had one of those wonderful allergy tests done and additional to being allergic to practically everything outside on some level, I also found out I was allergic to peanuts and potatoes. (Thankfully my peanut allergy isn’t lethal. That I’m aware of. I avoid it). Funny how I grew up on both and was allergic to both. But it explained not feeling well after eating either. I’ve cut both out of my diet since. 

The last few times I’d made mashed cauliflower I used garlic and really botched it the last time. I didn’t puree the cauliflower enough and the texture was awful. I had also been on a cauliflower kick and really got burned out on them so I gave them a break.

This morning I was looking through recipes because I wanted to find a fluffy mashed-potato-like recipe. Oh, did I ever find one.

It’s from Pride & Vegudice. I’ll let you just pop on over to the site to check it out, but as far as my results go, I thought it was amazing.

I couldn’t find nutritional yeast at Kroger, but read I could use parmesan cheese as a swap. Wasn’t the healthiest, but it would work, so that’s what I used.

It turned out wonderful.  I pureed it the perfect amount so it wasn’t watery, but it was well blended and there weren’t chunks. I also added a little bit of light butter to it to give it more flavor.

I know what I’m bringing to Thanksgiving this year.