Category Archives: Lunch

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili

This is such an awesome chili variety. The spice is complemented perfectly with the sweet potatoes and hint of molasses. I can’t wait to make it again!

Heat 3tbl EVOO in a heavy stockpot or Dutch oven. Add 1 diced sweet onion and 2 peeled and cubed sweet potatoes. Once the onions become translucent, remove both from your pot and set aside. 

Add 1lb lean ground beef and cook through. Once browned, add 1tsp salt, 2tbl chili powder, and 1tbl cumin. 

Stir in a can of diced tomatoes, 2tbl tomato paste, 2tbl molasses, and 2 cups of bone broth (or chicken broth if you prefer). Cook uncovered over medium heat for 10 minutes. 

Add in a rinsed and drained can of black beans, sweet potatoes, sautéed onion, and 1/2tsp cayenne pepper. Simmer 10-15 minutes until potatoes are soft but not mushy. Top with Greek yogurt and green onions. Enjoy!🍲

Adapted from: Our State Magazine

Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Soup

I love autumn for a multitude of reasons: Football, oysters, sweaters, boots, scarves, holidays, and last but not least, crockpot season. Fix it and forget it is so awesome for crazy days of shuffling my three year old from one thing to the next, cooking for my freezer meal business, and the endless chores of being a stay at home wife and mom. 

This is the best new soup I’ve tasted in a while. And today (after making it yesterday), it tastes even better!

Toss into crockpot:

10oz can green enchilada sauce, 1 can drained and rinsed northern beans, 2 cans drained and rinsed black beans, and 3 chicken breasts. 

Now add 1 undrained can of diced tomatoes, 8oz undrained diced fire roasted green chiles, 1tsp salt, 1/4tsp pepper, 4tsp chili powder, 1tbl cumin, 3/4tsp paprika, a handful of chopped cilantro, and 2 cups of chicken broth (I prefer reduced sodium bone broth). 

Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours until chicken easily shreds. 

Remove chicken from crockpot and cube 8oz of cream cheese (I prefer the Greek yogurt variety. It’s much healthier and tastes better in my opinion). Turn your crockpot to HIGH, and add in the cubed cream cheese to melt for 30 minutes. 

Add your chicken back in once cheese has melted and serve. We topped ours with avocado, Greek yogurt, cilantro, and jalapeños. 

For extra goodness, try making your own tortilla chips. Use a pizza cutter to quarter yellow corn tortillas. Brush both sides with EVOO and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake at 350 on a baking sheet until edges begin to turn brown. Yum.😋

Adapted from: Chelsea’s Messy Apron

Grilled, Cheese Stuffed Banana Peppers

With yesterday’s harvest of 15 banana peppers and 18 jalapeños, we felt compelled to try something new.


We took a small batch of 5 banana peppers and hollowed out the seeds and membranes.

Slice them lengthwise almost all the way down one side. 

Combine 4oz of cream cheese and 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt. Then add: 2 cloves minced garlic,  1/4tsp basil, 1/4tsp oregano, 1/2tsp salt, pinch of pepper, 1/2 cup mozzarella, and 1/4 cup parmesan. Fill each pepper with mixture. 

We capped the ends with foil and put them on the grill until they blackened on the bottoms and began to brown on top. 

These were really tasty, however, we love spicy food, so next time we make them we will either use spicy cheese or leave some of the seeds inside!

Adapted from: Cooking a la Mel

Baked Zucchini Fries

With our abundance of beautiful zucchini from our garden, I decided to give this recipe a try. It exceeded my expectations, and was quick and easy to prepare. 

After slicing up 2 huge zucchinis, I combined 1 cup of Panko, 1/2 cup of parmesan, 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning and salt/pepper. In small batches I dredged my fries through flour, then beaten egg, and then my Panko mixture.

Place a cooling rack (or 2) on top of your baking sheet and coat thoroughly with cooking spray.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes until the fries begin to turn golden brown. Enjoy this delicious guilt free snack plain or pair it with aioli, marinara, or ranch dressing.

Adapted from: Damn Delicious

Grilled, Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers

With a million jalapeños from our garden and a cheat day/Father’s Day upon us, what better way to use some of our fresh produce than load them up with cheese. These were a bit labor intensive, but worth it.

I used 12 jalapeños and halved them, removing the seeds and membranes.

Combine 1 cup shredded cheddar, 8oz softened cream cheese, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, and 1/2 teaspoon paprika. Use a dinner knife and spread each half with as much as it will hold.

Cut 12 strips of bacon in half and wrap each jalapeño, placing a toothpick in each to hold the bacon in place.

Grill with the cheese side down for 6-8 minutes and then flip and grill until the bacon blackens.

Try not to eat the entire batch!

Adapted from: Sally’s Baking Addiction

Homemade Dill Pickles

Another summer staple is the almighty dill pickle. Nothing completes the sandwich and chips trio more perfectly.  Well, with the insane amount of cucumbers we have growing, I knew I wanted to not only have cucumber water in the fridge daily, but also plenty of pickles! They could not be any easier to make. 


I used 3 of our garden fresh cukes about this size. 

Chop off the tops and bottoms, and slice the haves into spears. 

Bring 3.5 cups of water and 1.25 cups of white vinegar to a boil. Then add 1 tablespoon of sea salt and remove it from the heat. Let cool completely. Meanwhile, chop up a small container of fresh dill and put it in the bottom of a large mason jar. Cram as many cucumber spears as will fit on top of the dill. Drop a teaspoon of minced garlic on top and a handful of black peppercorns. Then pour the cooled mixture in. Once you screw your top on, give it a good shake and put them into the fridge. So Good.👍🏼

Adapted From: My Frugal Adventures

Banana Peppers

I LOVE banana peppers on sandwiches and salads. They add a little heat and a ton of flavor….however (for me), only if they are pickled. Our garden is kicking off some serious banana peppers already, so I couldn’t waste time preserving these beauties as more are ripening right behind them!

These were literally all picked within the last 3 days. 

I cut the tops off, ran my knife around the inside to seed and devein, then sliced away. 

After transferring the peppers to a mason jar and topping with about a teaspoon of minced garlic, I combined 3 cups white vinegar, 2 cups water, 2 tablespoons salt, and 1 tablespoon sugar and whisked over medium heat until the salt and sugar dissolved. Let it cool completely, then pour mixture into your mason jar. 

Refrigerate for at least 24 hours ~ these puppies just get better with age.😋

Easy Shrimp Tacos

You know what I could eat every single day? Fresh shrimp. I am so fortunate to live in a coastal town where you can buy local shrimp (when in season) on the side of the road for $5-$6/pound. There is nothing finer.
For these tacos and also for creating a shrimp dip bar (will post about my favorite dips for shrimp later) I oven roast the shrimp. This is as easy as coating your peeled and deveined shrimp in EVOO, salt & pepper, and spreading them on a lined baking sheet. Roast at 400 degrees for 6-8 minutes depending on the size of your shrimp.

Now, sauté finely shredded cabbage in a couple tablespoons of EVOO until it softens. Whisk together 3/4 cup of Greek yogurt, a handful of chopped cilantro, juice of a lime, and 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper. 

Warm up some uncooked corn tortillas (Tortilla Land are awesome) and then spoon in some yogurt sauce, cabbage, shrimp, and top with chopped avocado. Enjoy!!

Farmers Market Pasta Salad

Pasta salad is one of the most delicious side dishes in my opinion. It is a summer food that pairs perfectly with everything from burgers to chicken to mile high sandwiches. The key to amazing pasta salad is using the freshest veggies and fruit during the peak of the season. 

I start with a nice hearty pasta cooked al dente such as a penne or rotini. Then I combine the following in a large bowl:

-A container of mixed rainbow cherry tomatoes, 2 small zucchinis sliced into half moons, 1 red pepper thinly sliced, 1 cup corn sliced off the cob, a few green onions sliced finely, 2 ripe, firm peaches sliced, 2 cups chopped rotisserie chicken (optional), and a handful of fresh basil and cilantro chopped. 

Now, you can put just about any homemade dressing on top but this one tastes perfect with this salad:

Combine 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan, 1/2 cup EVOO, juice and zest of a lemon, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, and 1/4 cup chopped basil. Pour over mixture, combine, then fold in your pasta. Enjoy!!!

Adapted from: Can’t Stay Out of the Kitchen

Simply Crab Cakes

In our coastal town we eat a lot of wonderful seafood. Crab cakes are such a delicacy that pair well with a good steak, a piece of grilled fish, over a bed of orzo, or on top of a colorful summer salad. My ideal crab cake is light, flavorful, and has the slightest amount of bread that I can get away with….basically just enough to bind it together. 

Begin by putting 2 slices of good white bread (crusts removed) in your food processor and pulse until it becomes fine. 

Combine: Bread crumbs, 2 tablespoons mayo, 1 egg (beaten), 1 teaspoon Old Bay, 1 teaspoon Dijon, 1 teaspoon Worcestershire, 1 tablespoon dried parsley, and 2 teaspoons lemon juice. 

Fold in 1 pound lump crab meat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Remove and form into patties. 

Warm a tablespoon of EVOO in a skillet over medium heat. Place crab cakes in warm oil and sauté for approximately 3 minutes on each side until golden brown. Place on lined plate to cool. Wow oh wow!!⭐️

Adapted from: Sugar & Spice by Celeste