Saturday, October 22

Jalapeno Chicken Poppers

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Chicken Bites.jpg
These little yummy morsels are easy to make & oh so good! You can't eat just one - EVER!
8 chicken tenders, flattened & cut in two
3 oz package softened cream cheese
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded & finely chopped
8 slices bacon, cut in half
Dab ½ teaspoon (more or less) of cream cheese on top of each chicken tender. Sprinkle a scant ¼ teaspoon of peppers over cream cheese. Fold or roll chicken to enclose cream cheese mixture. Wrap each roll with one piece of bacon and secure with a toothpick.
Grill until bacon is brown and crispy on both sides.
Be sure to wear plastic gloves when handling fresh jalapenos. The oil will attach itself to your hands and is not easily washed away. An inadvertent swipe of the hand close to your eyes could be an unforgettable experience. For reference, if you are substituting for the chicken tenders (i.e. dark meat, large pieces of chicken breast, game meat), the size of the tenders I used were 5-6 inches long and 2-3 inches wide before flattening and cutting in half. Try flattening meat inside a zip-lock bag as pictured above. No flying pieces, no contamination on your cutting board from the chicken, and cleanup is super easy.   

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

This strawberry pretzel salad is always a hit at parties & potlucks. It's a strawberry jello dessert that is dangerously good! It's sweet, salty, tart and oh so irresistible!


2 cups finely crushed pretzels
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
¾ cup salted butter, melted

8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
8 ounces Cool Whip

Strawberry Topping:
2 cups boiling water
1 (6-ounce package) Strawberry Jell-O
1½ cups cold water
4 cups sliced strawberries


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a medium bowl, stir together the pretzel crumbs and sugar. Pour the melted butter over top and stir with a fork until all of the crumbs are evenly moistened. Press into the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking pan. Bake for 10 min, then cool completely.

2. Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the Cool Whip. Spread evenly over the crust and refrigerate while you prepare the topping.

3. Place the dry Jello in a large bowl and add the boiling water. Stir for at least 2 minutes, until the gelatin is completely dissolved. Stir in the cold water. Refrigerate for 1½ hours or until slightly thickened (will the consistency of egg whites). Stir in the strawberries and pour over the cream cheese layer. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or until the Jello layer is set. Cut into squares to serve. Leftovers should be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Sloppy Joes

I made these Sloppy Joes for a potluck we had a work & they were a HUGE hit! They are SO good & have decided to make this my "go-to" SJ recipe & ditch the cans of Man-wich! Yet another great recipe from the Pioneer Woman :)
2 Tablespoons Butter
2-1/2 pounds Ground Beef
1/2 whole Large Onion, Diced
1 whole Large Green Bell Pepper, Diced
5 cloves Garlic, Minced
1-1/2 cup Ketchup
1 cup Water
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
2 teaspoons Chili Powder (more To Taste)
1 teaspoon Dry Mustard
1/2 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes (more To Taste)
Worcestershire Sauce, To Taste
2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste (optional)
Tabasco Sauce (optional; To Taste)
Salt To Taste
Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
Kaiser Rolls

Add butter to a large skillet or dutch oven over medium high heat. Add ground beef and cook until brown. Drain most of the fat and discard.

Add onions, green pepper, and garlic. Cook for a few minutes, or until vegetables begin to get soft.

Add ketchup, brown sugar, chili pepper, dry mustard, and water. Stir to combine and simmer for 15 minutes, adding salt and pepper to taste. Also add tomato paste, Worcestershire, and Tabasco if desired. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Spread rolls with butter and brown on a griddle or skillet. Spoon meat mixture over the rolls, topping with a slice of cheese if you like. Enjoy :)

Slow Cooker Chicken Taco Soup

This is a great soup to put in the crock-pot & forget about it until supper time. If you love Mexican, you will love this soup!!

1 chopped onion
1 can chili beans
1 can black beans
1 can corn
1 can tomato sauce
12 oz beer or chicken broth
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 tsp cumin
1 chopped garlic clove
3 chicken breasts
cheddar cheese
sour cream
tortilla chips
Cilantro for garnish (optional)
  1. Place the onion, chili beans, black beans, corn, tomato sauce, beer, and diced tomatoes in a slow cooker. Add taco seasoning, cumin & garlic & stir to blend. Lay chicken breasts on top of the mixture, pressing down slightly until just covered by the other ingredients. Set slow cooker for low heat, cover, & cook for 5 hours.
  2. Remove chicken breasts from the soup, & allow to cool long enough to be handled. Stir the shredded chicken back into the soup, & continue cooking for 2 hours. Serve topped with shredded Cheddar cheese, a dollop of sour cream, & crushed tortilla chips, if desired.

Pumpkin Bars w/Cream Cheese Frosting

A co-worker of mine brought these delicious bars in for work the other day & they were SO yummy! I begged her for the recipe & she delivered the next day :) Give these a try this fall season - you won't be disappointed!!

Pumpkin Bars
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups sugar
15oz can pumpkin
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg

Mix together in large bowl eggs, oil, sugar, pumpkin & set aside. Sift in bowl the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves & nutmeg. Mix with other ingredients. Pour in greased & floured 10x15" bar pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

6oz cream cheese, softened
3/4 stick butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
1 T cream or milk
1 tsp vanilla
Walnuts & pumpkin candy (optional)

Mix cream cheese, butter, milk & vanilla together & the powdered sugar until the right consistence. Frost bars & sprinkle with walnuts. Decorate with pumpkin candy.