Category Archives: Leftovers

Veggie Corn Dog Mini Muffins


Toddlers are funny little people.  One minute, they’re begging for broccoli and just when you set their plate in front of them, THEN they ask for cake.  My little miss LOVES cupcakes.  She calls them pancakes, but I know what she means.  My little mister LOVES ketchup and will dip anything in it- even apples.  And he loves hot dogs.  They also have days where they eat hardly anything, and days I’d swear they had hollow legs!  Well, today they ate four of these mini muffins, each.  And that’s a LOT for a little tummy.  They both said, “yum!” and little miss even said the ‘pancakes’ were ‘so pretty’.  She’s got good taste!

This recipe is easy to pull together, takes literally 5 minutes to assemble, and tastes great to boot!  I hope you love them as much as we did.  They also freeze very well!  Perfect for those crazy week nights!

Veggie Corn Dog Mini Muffins

  • corn bread muffin mix that makes 6 regular sized muffins (I used Marie Callendar’s)
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded carrots
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded zucchini
  • 2 hot dogs, chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Lightly spray 20 of the cups in your mini muffin pan.
  2. Make corn bread according to package directions, using milk, egg and butter.
  3. Place shredded veggies in a clean towel or paper towel and twist/squeeze to get some water out.  Stir into corn bread batter.
  4. Dollop about 1 tsp batter into each of the 20 greased cups.  Use your clean finger or spoon to even it out in the cup.
  5. Add about 1 tsp chopped hot dog on top of the batter, then top that with another tsp of batter.  If you have some left over, just distribute it among the cups.  Use your clean finger or a spoon to make sure the hot dogs are covered with batter.
  6. Place in preheated oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until sides are golden brown.  
  7. Let cool about 5 minutes, then remove from pan to a cooling rack.  Serve warm with ketchup and/or mustard.
  8. To freeze, let cool to room temperature, then place in a zip top bag and remove as much air as possible.  Freeze for up to 3 months.  Reheat by baking on a foil lined and lightly greased tray at 400 for about 10 minutes.

These would be great chili toppers, too!!

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Leftover Turkey Potato Noodle Soup

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Going through pregnancy close to the Holidays makes some funny things happen.  Things like craving roast turkey with mashed potatoes and gravy in October.  With just the two of us, I had to figure out what to do with the leftover meat, potatoes, and gravy!

One of my favorite things that my great grandma used to do a few days after Thanksgiving was to make turkey and homemade noodles over mashed potatoes.  So good!  This is a variation of that recipe, but instead of serving over mashed potatoes, I just stirred the potatoes right in, making a velvety thick soup. This one’s a winner on a cold day!

What do you like to do with your Thanksgiving leftovers?

Leftover Turkey Potato Noodle Soup

  • 1-1/2 cups chopped carrots
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped onion (optional in my house)
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 quart chicken or turkey broth
  • 1 quart water
  • small package frozen noodles (I didn’t have time to make them this time)
  • about a pound of leftover turkey, cut into bite sized pieces
  • about 2 cups leftover turkey gravy
  • about 3 cups leftover mashed potatoes
  • 1 Tbsp chicken Better Than Bouillon (optional)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. In a medium soup pot over medium high heat, melt the butter.  Add the carrots, toss to coat in melted butter, and cook about 3 minutes.  Add celery and onions (if using) and saute another 3 minutes.
  2. Stir in the broth and water.  Bring to a boil.  Add the noodles and cook according to package directions (mine took 20 minutes).
  3. Once noodles are tender, add turkey, gravy, potatoes, and bouillon (if using).  Bring to a low boil.
  4. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve!

Garlic Sourdough Croutons

garliccroutonsSometimes, I get to travel for work.  And sometimes, I get to spend a couple hours in the San Francisco airport.  They have really good sourdough bread there.  It ALMOST makes up for the flights ALWAYS being delayed– especially on foggy mornings.  ALMOST…

I usually pick up at least a few loaves.  One to take to work, one to give a neighbor, and one for us to eat.  We made grilled cheese sandwiches a few times (heavenly with a few thin slices of garden tomatoes), but we still had half a loaf left.  And it was beginning to get stale.  What’s my go-to thing for good stale-ish bread?  CROUTONS!!

Croutons are SO EASY and SO GOOD!  I add them to salads, on top of soups, or just eat them as a snack sometimes.  Hey- don’t judge!  I just tell myself they’re better than potato chips.  And if they’re not, we’ll just pretend they are. 😉

What do you like to do with stale-ish bread?

Garlic Sourdough Croutons

  • 2-3 Tbsp oil (I used light olive oil)
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1/2 loaf (8 oz.) good sourdough bread, cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line a cookie sheet with foil.
  2. In a small saucepan, heat oil and garlic.  Continue heating, turning garlic often, until garlic is toasted and golden brown (NOT black).  Remove garlic from oil and set aside to cool slightly.
  3. In a large bowl, combine bread cubes and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Toss to combine.
  4. Spread out the seasoned cubes on the foil-lined cookie sheet in a single layer.  Bake at 350°F for about 10 minutes or until the top is golden.
  5. Turn or stir the croutons, then place back in the oven for about another 5 minutes.
  6. Let cool completely. Store on the counter in an airtight container.

Chicken Enchilada Soup

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I’ll admit it.  I have a soft spot in my heart for enchiladas.  I love them!  Red sauce or green sauce, they’re always good.  I prefer corn tortillas to flour.  But sometimes, you just don’t have time to assemble them and wait for them to cook in an oven.  Sometimes, you just gotta get dinner DONE.

That’s why this soup is AWESOME.  It has all the great flavor of chicken enchiladas, with less work and a lot less time.  Give it a try for Cinco De Mayo this year.  You can also substitute green enchilada sauce for the red.  Yum!

Chicken Enchilada Soup

  • 1 can diced tomatoes with green chiles (14.5 oz.)
  • 1 can red enchilada sauce (15 oz., use the spice level you want)
  • 1 cup water or chicken broth
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 lb shredded cooked chicken
  • 1/2 cup sliced olives (optional)
  • Crushed Tortilla Chips
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Sour Cream
  • Hot sauce to taste
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a medium saucepan, combine diced tomatoes, enchilada sauce, water or broth, cumin, chicken and olives (if using).  Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer about 5 minutes.
  2. Ladle into bowls and garnish with tortilla chips, cheese, sour cream, hot sauce, salt and pepper.

Happy Cinco De Mayo!

Quick Veggie Beef Soup

While on a walk the other day, I was amazed at all the beautiful fall colors.   Red, bright yellow, flaming orange, and still a tinge of green here and there.  While most areas have trees with no leaves left, ours seem to be hanging on for a little longer.  I swear the tree out front changed color overnight!

When the weather turns a bit cooler, there’s nothing better than a warm soup full of veggies and tummy warming comfort.  This soup should fit the bill!  I used some leftover pot roast to make this soup, but you can use leftover steak, ground beef, or canned (just rinse it really well first to remove most of the salt).

This recipe came together in 30 minutes.  Weeknight meal!  Hooray!  I served it with slices of warm bread and butter.  I hope it warms your tummy as well as it did ours.

Quick Veggie Beef Soup

 

  • 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup chopped onion (about 1 medium)
  • 1 Tbsp garlic
  • 1 (16 oz.) bag mixed vegetables (carrots, green beans, peas and corn)
  • 1 cup chopped cabbage
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 12 oz. (1-1/2 cups) V8 juice
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp Beef Better-Than-Bouillon
  • 1 lb leftover roast, steak, ground beef, or canned beef, cut into bite-size chunks
  • 1 tsp sriracha (optional)
  1. Place the tomatoes, onion, and garlic in a food processor and process until smooth.
  2. Empty tomato mixture into a large pot.  Add mixed vegetables,  cabbage, thyme, chicken stock, V8, water, and beef bouillon.  Bring to a low boil, then add the beef and sriracha.
  3. Continue to cook for about 10 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

This soup is even better the next day! 😀

 

French Roll Pizza

Sometimes, I don’t want to cook.  I know, SHOCKING!  But there are those days that you really need to go to the store, but just don’t WANT to.  Or that you have things on hand that you could cook, but they’re still frozen.

Luckily, on this particular evening, we still had some things left over from making pizza and sandwiches earlier in the week.  I wasn’t in the mood to make a crust from scratch, so I used the next best thing.  Bread.

I am not a big fan of thick crust pizza.  I like my crust to be crispy and crunchy.  When I take a bite of pizza, I want to taste all the wonderful toppings, not a hunk of too soft dough.  These french rolls were the perfect solution.  They were slightly stale and dried out, which meant that they really crisped up in the oven.  Hooray!  Happy Josie!

I did a little trick with the Pepperoni.  My husband sometimes complains that his pepperoni pizza is too oily.  To solve that problem, I put pepperoni slices in a paper towel and cooked it for 30 seconds.  A lot of the oil soaked into the paper towel and his pizza was less oily.  Happy T!

I hope you enjoy this quick weeknight recipe.  What do you cook on busy nights?

French Roll Pizza

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Serves 4

  • 2 French Rolls, split
  • 4 Tbsp tomato sauce or spaghetti sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1 large mushroom, sliced thin
  • 6 black olives, sliced thin
  • 4 slices Canadian bacon, sliced into strips (fits better on the roll that way)
  • 8 slices pepperoni
  1. Place pepperoni on half of a clean paper towel.  Fold paper towel over the pepperoni, and microwave on high for 30 seconds.
  2. Preheat oven to 425°F.  Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and place rolls on the sheet, cut side up.
  3. Spread 1 Tbsp tomato sauce or spaghetti sauce on each roll half.  Layer with meats, mushrooms, and olives.  Divide cheese evenly over the top of each roll.
  4. Bake 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Let cool slightly and serve.

Spring Chicken Pasta

We’ve been experiencing a heat wave here in the Treasure Valley with temperatures in the 80’s.  Generally, we’re more around the 60’s this time of year.  The weatherman says the wave is almost over and temperatures will return to the norm by the end of the week.  And the norm is pretty good, too!

The grills around the neighborhood are really getting a workout!  We grilled up some chicken the other night and had some leftovers.  I couldn’t let it go to waste!  One of my favorite dishes to pull together quick is a veggie-pasta dish.  The flavors are fresh and the colors vibrant.  You can customize to add whatever vegetables you may have on hand.  I had asparagus, lemons, and brussels sprouts from my Bountiful Basket; arugula, basil, garlic, and cherry tomatoes from the store.  Let’s get cooking, shall we?

Spring Chicken Pasta

PER SERVING:

  • 2 oz. (dry weight) pasta (I used rotini)
  • 3 tsp olive oil, divided
  • 2 brussels sprouts, chopped
  • 4-5 spears asparagus, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 cup arugula
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 4 oz. diced grilled chicken
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • 4-5 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions.   Add the asparagus to the cooking pasta during the last 3 minutes of cooking time.  Drain well.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tsp oil in a small skillet over medium heat.  Add the brussels sprouts and cook, stirring often, until they soften and begin to brown slightly.  Add the garlic,  tomatoes, and arugula.  Cook about 30 more seconds, or until the garlic is fragrant.  Remove the pan from the heat.
  3. Microwave chopped chicken for about 1 minute or until hot.
  4. Chop up the tomato and place in a bowl.  Add the pasta and veggies, followed by the chicken.  Add 2 tsp olive oil, the lemon juice, and the lemon zest.  Give it a toss and season with salt and pepper.  DONE!

Sometimes, I add a little sprinkle of cheese on top.  Happy Spring!