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Easy Thanksgiving Menu Plan


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Thanksgiving dinner should not be stressful in planning. Stick with the traditional, tried and true recipes that everyone loves. I got fancy one year and added all kinds of fruit and things to the stuffing. The entire family was looking forward to my sausage stuffing and would’ve even been happy with Stove Top, but were disappointed in my “fancy” dish that took 2x as long to prepare.

Make preparation easy for the hostess. If you are hosting, ask for help, ask what another quests “speciality” dish is and if they would like to bring it. If you are going to someone else’s house, volunteer to make your favorite dish, or at least one you know your kids will eat :)

Go to the store NOW. Don’t wait until the store is crowded and stock is sold out.

 The Turkey – We prefer ours fried. They are so juicy and crispy on the outside and they don’t seem to have that weird turkey taste :) Paul gave some good advice as well as what your cost will be at Walmart over HERE. 

 

:: APPETIZERS & BREADS::

 Olive Bread - This is a ridiculously good appetizer that we serve because it is easy and good! Plus, the kids can help and so can anyone visiting!

 

 Beer Bread - This is the best “bread as a side dish” you can possibly have! I just recently posted this recipe and it is made with only 4 ingredients. You will fall in love!

 

 7 Up Biscuits – Light and fluffy and easy to make, these are just like the ones you get from restaurants!

 

::SIDE DISHES::

 Broccoli Salad – This is another family favorite and also one that you can make the day before. Have the kids help you cut everything up and toss it in the fridge for the next day. Just add the dressing when you are ready to serve!

Sausage Stuffing – This is pretty much the reason to have Thanksgiving dinner! I eat about 1/2 the pan making it! Give it a try if you have not done it before!

 

 Acorn Squash – Another SUPER easy, awesome side dish! Who doesn’t like bacon and brown sugar?!

 

::DESSERTS::

Chocolate Caramel Cake – Otherwise known as “Better than S*$ Cake!” Easy, good, and with so many variations, you can please anyone!

 

 Snickers Brownies- Pretty much as good as they sound. This might be the most complicated recipe but it is the most worth it!

 

Most importantly, relax and enjoy your family!

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Easy, Yummy, Olive Bread Recipe

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This is one of my family’s FAVORITE weekend and holiday appetizer. Olive Bread. Since you should be picking up some free cans of Olives this week at CVS and really cheap at Walgreens, this would be a great recipe to add to the menu!

This recipe is SUPER easy and you can adjust it to what you think your family will like. I would suggest making it the first time the way I have posted and then going from there.

Chop 14oz can of black olives
Chop 6oz. of green olives with pimento’s

Chop 3 stalk of green onions

Shred 1lb of Monterey Jack cheese

1 stick butter softened
1/2 cup real mayo

Combine all ingredients together. Now, you can do this a day ahead of time and put it in the fridge until you need it. Or, make it right away!

Cut one loaf of crusty french bread in half.

Smother each side with the mix.

Bake at 350 for about 15min. then turn on the broiler and brown the top until golden!
Not a single bit will be left! I was almost too late for a picture!

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Easy Pumpkin Bar Recipe


You know the fancy pumpkin roll that looks like only a baker could make it? Did you know you can make them in a pan?! Well, you can.

This is a super easy and standard Pumpkin Bar Recipe what anyone can make. My kids made this last night with me and I really didn’t do anything but supervise. Because I am good at that, oh, and did the dishes of course. For some reason everyone skedaddles when the dishes are up.

The colors are wonky on my picture because I used Instagram, but that is the only photo I got as they were all gone before I could get a good picture.

Just some advice…. Make something with Pumpkin this week. It will make you happy. I promise. Something about the fall and pumpkin makes you smile. :)

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Nutter Butter Halloween Ghost – Instructions and Recipe ( $1.15 each bag decorated!)


Nutter Butter Halloween ghosts are a long tradition in our home. I remember my Mom making these when I was a teenager.

They are really easy, inexpensive and the kids can help do everything!

You will need Nutter Butters ( $3.47) Almond Bark ($2.98) and either Mini Morsels ($2.28) for the eyes or Mini Reeses Pieces ($1.98).

Chop up the Almond bark and melt in a double boiler or in the microwave. I don’t have a double boiler and so I do mine in a sauce pan.

You have to do this on the LOWEST heat possible and it will take a good 10 minutes to start melting good, but any higher heat and you will ruin the chocolate.

In the mean time, try and keep the kids out of the cookies!

Once the chocolate is smooth and all melted you are going to start dipping the cookies. I remove it from the heat because I let the kids do this. Every now and then you have to stick the pan back on to keep it melted.

Dip each cookie about 2/3 the way in. Shake them a little to get the excess off and sometimes I dip them a second time.

If you have any candy left…

This is where I grab kids and they can help either dip cookies or stick the eyes on.

We did one ghost with mini chocolate chip cookies and one with mini Reeses Pieces. Then we voted. The mini Reese pieces won because they were a little bigger.

After dipping, place them on wax paper, parchment paper or a surface where they won’t stick. You can make the chocolate harden faster by sticking them in the freezer or fridge, but I just let mine harden for about an hour on the counter.

Then you can place them in little gift baggies or boxes and give them away!

I used clear plastic gift bags ($1.99) from Walmart, ribbon from Dollar Tree ($1) and pumpkin and cat cut outs ($1.50 for 12)  from Targets Dollar Spot.

Total cost for 3 cookies in a bag with decoration: $1.15

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Cheeseburger Soup Recipe

cheeseburger-soup-recipe-

Cheeseburger Soup was a hit! I promised I would post this recipe today and I came through! :) Although almost a little too late. The family ate without me and this is all that was left, nothing to really take a picture of, so close your eyes and imagine a huge bowl of chunky soup!

We had hamburgers the night before and made too many, so I tossed them in the fridge and was trying to figure out what to make with them. We have had this last spring break and I thought it would be perfect to add chopped up hamburger to. AND IT WAS!

You will probably have everything you need at home. Maybe the Velveeta might throw you off, but thanks to the Kroger mega event I had some!

Start by chopping the celery, carrots and onion. Add some butter ( I used olive oil ) to your pan and brown with the raw hamburger. Since mine was already cooked, I just added the veggies. Saute until they are cooked or the hamburger is browned.

It smells so good! Next, I chopped my cooked burgers up into small pieces and when the begins were cooked I added them in. The cooked hamburgers were a little gross going in, and my dog was going nuts! He thought they were supposed to be for him. He was so disappointed!

Then you are going to want to add you chicken broth.

Add the chicken broth to the meat and veggies and turn the heat up.

Chop up your potatoes and add them in. Bring to a boil for about 15 minutes until the potatoes are cooked through. At this point I added my spices. As it was boiling I cut up the Velveeta!

Turn the heat WAY down and add the Velveeta, you don’t want to boil it as it will curdle.

At this point I left my house. From here on you are really ready to eat, but if you need a pic for some reason take it now as the family isn’t waiting for you to get home to eat!

You could add some shredded cheese on the top for garnish and serve with a hunk of bread. My family loves this dish and my little kids eat it. The precooked burgers were great in it as well!

Make sure to “pin” my recipe!

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Easy Halloween Chocolate Covered Pretzels


I have been posting easy recipes for Halloween that you can do with the kids or by yourself that are quick and easy.

Personally, I love a difficult, beautiful recipe, but it is so much more fun to get the kids involved with me and see how happy they are when they have the chance to make something!

This is super simple. Get some almond park and melt it either in the microwave or in a double boiler. Take some short pretzel sticks or the long rods and dip the top half in the chocolate. BTW, you can color the almond bark if you want colors. I like the white.

You can use anything that will stick to the almond bark to make them pretty. From sprinkles to crushed candy. For the kids I use sprinkles, for the adults I like crushed Butterfinger, Heath, or mini chocolate chips.

Once the bark is melted and you are dipping the pretzels, roll them in your topping and stick them on some wax paper. They will set up on their own in a few hours or you can hurry it along by sticking them in the fridge.

Then you can package about 10,000 different ways! From little baggies to plates to cups. Ours usually nee make it that far!


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Easy Homemade Authentic Enchiladas Recipe

Easy homemade authentic Enchiladas

:: Update – Mother in Law is here again and this is what we are having for dinner! YAY me!!! ::

My Mother in law was here for 2 weeks watching the kids for a few days while we were at a conference. The kids and husband pretty much wanted her to cook the entire time. When we were first married my husband asked me to make enchiladas, and so I did. He looked at them sand asked what they were? I said, “Enchiladas” he said, “Not like my Moms” so I said, “well then you make them” and so 16 years later he still does. :)

Really, they are the best ever!

With the sale this week at Kroger on the Old ElPaso items, I thought this was a perfect time to post this recipe as you need the Old El Paso enchilada sauce. We use mild.

You will need a few things to get started: 

  • Oil
  • Green Onions
  • Olives
  • Cheese
  • Corn Tortillas
  • Ole El Paso enchilada sauce (mild)
  • Plus optional filling items like, cooked chicken, pork or beef, green chilies, etc.

The first thing to do is decide what type you want. We normally do plain old cheese and black olive. This night we had taco chicken leftover so we are adding chicken. We also didn’t use Old El Paso because the store we were at didn’t have it, weird, but this wasn’t as good of a brand :(

Clear your workspace. Get out your pans and add the ingredients to bowls before you start. This is an assembly line!

We have everything ready to go! Heat some oil in a pan, about 1/4 inch deep. You don’t want it to be so hot it splatters but hot enough to start cooking the corn tortillas.

Add some enchilada sauce to a pie plate size pan. Add a little bit to the bottom os a 9×13 to LIGHTLY cover the bottom. When the oil has heated up add a tortilla to the oil and when it starts to float to the top and soften, using tongs move it out of the oil and to the pie pan. Cover it in enchilada sauce, doing a few at a time. Then take the tortilla and place it in the 9×13 and add your filling. We used cheese, olive and chicken. I think as well as a few green onions. Don’t over fill, more is not better. These were almost a little too full this time.

Once you have the pan full add some cheese and a little enchilada sauce to the tops. We garnish with some green onions and a few olives. We usually make a few trays at a time. You can make these ahead of time and keep in the fridge or freeze for another time.

Now add to a 350 degree oven for about 40 minutes or until the edges are getting brown and crispy. You can cover for the first 20 minutes if you want.

Serve with Spanish Rice, Avocado and Sour Cream.

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Easy Dill Sandwich Spread Recipe


We often have sandwiches for dinner. In order to make them a little more exciting I try different spreads and different breads. I made this simple dill sandwich spread the other night and my 15 year old declared his love for me and ate 2 sandwiches. I would say it was a hit!

Take a block of cream cheese, mayo, crushed garlic, dill and some cucumber if you have it.

Mix it all together and chill. This can be kept in the fridge for a few days and used when needed.

Next I rummaged through my fridge and grabbed all the cheese and meat I had. I used bread from the mark down section at my Kroger and a cucumber.

I have found that when I make a buffet line or spread it all out and let the family make their own sandwich it is much more appetizing to them and fun. They also add more veggies when I do this.

The cucumber is such a compliment to the dill spread it is a MUST on this sandwich! It was aHUGE hit at our house and so I hope you try it!

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The Easiest and Best Beer Bread Recipe (3 ingredients)


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:: I am making this right now and am bumming beer off my neighbors… Seriously, they think we are so strange! ::

There is a restaurant close to here that has the best beer bread EVER. Sadly, they wont give their recipe out and so I have for years tried to recreate it. I think I have come close and it is only 3 ingredients!

The 2 things that I love about beer bread are the sweet and tangy taste and the crisp crust and chewy inside.

Beer bread is seriously easy to make with flour, beer, and sugar. Adding self-raising flour tends to give a better result, I have found.

You can change the flavor of beer bread by using different beer. Using a stout or dark beer will make the bread darker and have a different flavor. Use a beer like pumpkin ale flavored and you will add a fun fall taste. Try adding cheddar and parsley or sun-dried tomato.

Since we don’t drink, I don’t have beer on hand. I usually run next door to my neighbor’s and offer to buy a can from them. Then I have to promise to make them some as they hand me 2 cans! :)

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Easy Thanksgiving Menu Plan


 - Make sure to “pin” me!

Thanksgiving dinner should not be stressful in planning. Stick with the traditional, tried and true recipes that everyone loves. I got fancy one year and added all kinds of fruit and things to the stuffing. The entire family was looking forward to my sausage stuffing and would’ve even been happy with Stove Top, but were disappointed in my “fancy” dish that took 2x as long to prepare.

Make preparation easy for the hostess. If you are hosting, ask for help, ask what another quests “speciality” dish is and if they would like to bring it. If you are going to someone else’s house, volunteer to make your favorite dish, or at least one you know your kids will eat :)

Go to the store NOW. Don’t wait until the store is crowded and stock is sold out.

 The Turkey – We prefer ours fried. They are so juicy and crispy on the outside and they don’t seem to have that weird turkey taste :) Paul gave some good advice as well as what your cost will be at Walmart over HERE. 

 

:: APPETIZERS & BREADS::

 Olive Bread - This is a ridiculously good appetizer that we serve because it is easy and good! Plus, the kids can help and so can anyone visiting!

 Beer Bread - This is the best “bread as a side dish” you can possibly have! I just recently posted this recipe and it is made with only 4 ingredients. You will fall in love!

 7 Up Biscuits – Light and fluffy and easy to make, these are just like the ones you get from restaurants!

 

::SIDE DISHES::

 Broccoli Salad – This is another family favorite and also one that you can make the day before. Have the kids help you cut everything up and toss it in the fridge for the next day. Just add the dressing when you are ready to serve!

Sausage Stuffing – This is pretty much the reason to have Thanksgiving dinner! I eat about 1/2 the pan making it! Give it a try if you have not done it before!

 Acorn Squash – Another SUPER easy, awesome side dish! Who doesn’t like bacon and brown sugar?!

 

::DESSERTS::

Chocolate Caramel Cake – Otherwise known as “Better than S*$ Cake!” Easy, good, and with so many variations, you can please anyone!

 

 Snickers Brownies- Pretty much as good as they sound. This might be the most complicated recipe but it is the most worth it!

 

Most importantly, relax and enjoy your family!

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