Category Archives: Southwestern

Spicy Instant Pot Chicken

The instant pot is certainly the new craze these days. Dinner in under an hour, yes please! Some folks are intimidated by this new machine, but just remember that it’s much like it’s grandfather the crock pot – you can dump whatever you have in your kitchen and voila, dinner is served. This recipe has become a favorite and a staple in our house:

Begin with 3-4 trimmed chicken breasts. Then I grab all the peppers I have on hand plus an onion.

Chop or slice everything into big pieces.

Turn your instant pot on to the brown cycle. Season your chicken generously with your favorite seasoning. We love Weber’s Garlic Habanero. Once heated, add some EVOO to the bottom before browning your chicken on both sides.

Toss in your veggies first. I love adding corn cut from the cob but canned works fine.

Now add in your canned goods. We love hot Rotel, fire roasted diced green chiles, fire roasted diced tomatoes, tomatillo salsa, chipotle in adobo sauce, beans, etc….literally, you can’t go wrong here. Then add 8oz of cream cheese (we prefer the Greek yogurt variety).

Put the lid on and let it cook for 40 minutes. Then shred the chicken inside the pot. We love to serve this over quinoa, but it would be great over rice, potato, or pasta – your pick.

Avocado (and maybe some jalapeño slices and hot sauce) make the perfect topping. Enjoy!

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Shrimp Enchiladas with Poblano Cream Sauce

Yes, clearly I am drawn to the same types of recipes. Modern, Mexican inspired meals are just the favorite in my house. We still have some stockpiled local shrimp (I mean, we did buy 60lbs in October🤪), so I wanted to try something new with those. Something totally fresh from all of the holiday “stuffing” that’s been happening since November.😁 Begin by melting 2tbl butter over medium heat. Now whisk in 2tbl flour and stir quickly for a couple of minutes. Slowly combine 1.5C chicken bone broth. Add in 3/4C plain Greek yogurt. Stir in 1 diced poblano (separate out 2tbl of the pepper that will be used in step 2) and 1/2tsp garlic powder. Allow mixture to thicken and then salt and pepper to taste. Stir in 1C shredded Monterey Jack cheese, once melted remove from heat. Add in 2tbl chopped, fresh cilantro and set aside.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Toss 1.5lbs of peeled and deveined shrimp in EVOO, S&P, and roast on a lined baking sheet for 6-8 minutes (depending on the size of your shrimp). Cut into bite sized pieces and set aside.

Warm 2tbl EVOO over medium heat and add 1/2C chopped onion. Once translucent, add in 1tbl minced garlic and the 2tbl of diced poblano that you set aside. Sauté for a minute or so and then add 1.5C matchstick carrots and 3C baby spinach plus a few dashes of your favorite hot sauce. Once spinach wilts, remove from heat and add in your shrimp.

Using freshly cooked flour tortillas, wrap about 1/3C of your mixture topped with Monterey Jack cheese. Lay seam side down in a prepared baking dish. Cover enchiladas with about half of your sauce. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes at 375 degrees.

Remove and cover with remaining sauce plus another tablespoon of chopped, fresh cilantro. Serve with avocado, hot sauce, fresh jalapeños, etc. Enjoy! Adapted From: Gimme Some Oven

Crispy Filet Tacos

We happened to have some leftover steak from a couple of nights ago (doesn’t happen very often). However, when this does happen, we either turn it into amazing steak sandwiches or tacos. 

Begin by chopping off any excess fat and then dicing your steak into small pieces. Dice an onion and a handful of cilantro. 

Add in a bit of cracked pepper and sea salt. Then stir to combine. 

Warm about 1/4C of EVOO over medium heat in a large saucepan. Place cooked corn tortillas into oil and add a couple spoonfuls of your meat mixture and spicy shredded cheese (this variety is pretty tasty). 


Use the back of your spatula to fold the tacos over and cook for ~3 minutes per side until they begin to brown. 

Combine ingredients for your pico (recipe also on blog). 

Serve and enjoy!

Roasted Poblano & Chicken Enchiladas

We love enchiladas in my house. LOVE. These were so amazing that my husband insisted we put them into our regular rotation. 

Begin by rinsing and drying 3 poblano peppers. Brush them lightly with EVOO and place them on a lined baking sheet. Bake at 450 degrees for 35-45 minutes until the skin is dark and the outer lining is wrinkled. Let stand for 30 minutes. 

Salt & pepper 1.25lbs of chicken tenders and cook them over medium heat in a sauce pan with 1tbl of EVOO.Set aside. Add into the same pan 1 sliced green pepper and 1 small sliced yellow onion. Cook until soft. Dice the cooked chicken and place into a large mixing bowl. 

Add the cooked onions and green pepper into the mixing bowl. Now skin and seed the poblanos and add them to your mixing bowl. Your filling is complete. 

In the same saucepan, melt 1tbl of butter and then add 2tsp minced garlic. Once garlic becomes fragrant (1 minute), add 1tbl flour and whisk to combine. Slowly add 1.25C of whole milk and then 1/2C sour cream. Whisk until it becomes thick and then stir in 1/2tsp cumin and 1/2tsp chili powder. Continue stiring until sauce thickens and warms through. 

Lay a couple spoonfuls of the sauce into the bottom of a baking dish. Using freshly cooked flour tortillas, roll approximately 1/2 cup of the chicken mix into each tortilla. Top chicken with shredded pepper jack cheese and place into baking dish. Now cover with remaining sauce. 

Top with more pepper jack and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. 

Top with avocado and enjoy!

Adapted from: Will Cook For Smiles

The BEST Beef Enchiladas

The search is over. These are the best beef Enchiladas I have ever tasted. I’d even venture to say this is my husband’s favorite dish that I make. They are melt in your mouth, cheesy, full of flavor, worth every delicious bite, shear perfection. 

Begin with 4lbs of pot roast style beef, excess fat trimmed off. Coat all sides of the meat generously with cracked salt and pepper. Heat a couple tablespoons of EVOO in a large skillet over medium high heat. Sear it quickly on all sides until it has a beautiful brownish black color. Now put it in your crockpot. 

Cover with 1 large chopped onion, 20oz diced green chiles, 2tbl chili powder, 2tbl cumin, 2tbl garlic powder, 5oz Franks Hot Sauce, and 1/4c of water. Cook on low for 8-9 hours or until beef shreds easily with 4 forks. 

For the enchilada sauce (which is different from my normal variety) – Heat a tablespoon of EVOO in a medium saucepan and sauté 1/2c minced onions until soft. Stir in 24oz tomato sauce, 8oz diced green chiles, 2tbl chili powder, 1tbl cumin, and a few dashes of hot sauce. 

Cover the bottom of a baking dish with your enchilada sauce. Prepare fresh flour tortillas and spoon in your meat (which now looks like this).

Top meat with Pepper Jack or Monterey Jack cheese. Roll up and place in baking dish. When you have finished rolling up all the meat, cover completely with the remaining enchilada sauce and top with more cheese. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until cheese is melty and bubbly. Top with avocado, jalapeño, hot sauce, etc. Enjoy!!

Adapted From: Mrs. Happy Homemaker

White Chicken Chili with just FIVE ingredients

I love soup and am especially a fan of all chili varieties. Nothing says comfort like a lit fireplace, cozy pjs, and a warm bowl of soup (and also a favorite DVR show to watch – lately This Is Us).

This is a fix it and forget it soup for the crockpot. Throw in 3 chicken breasts, 2 cans of great northern beans (drained), 2 cups of salsa verde, 2tsp cumin, and 6 cups of chicken broth (or bone broth, my latest obsession). 

That’s it! Cook on low for 5-6 hours until chicken shreds easily with a fork. Serve with your favorite toppings. We LOVE Greek yogurt, jalapeños, cilantro, avocado, and hot sauce. I also make homemade tortilla chips to accompany this. Simply cut thin tortillas into pieces with a pizza cutter, brush both sides with olive oil, lightly salt, and bake for 12-15 minutes at 350. Enjoy!!

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

Pickled Jalapeños 

We have picked approximately 2 million jalapeños from our garden this year so I love trying different ways of preserving them. This recipe only takes about 25 minutes for a jar that can last for weeks. 

Begin with about 15 large jalapeños sliced with the stems cut off. 

Combine 1 cup distilled white vinegar, 1 cup water, 2 garlic cloves (slightly smashed), 4 tablespoons of sugar, and 2 tablespoons of salt. Bring to a boil and add in your jalapeños.

Remove promptly from heat and press all of your slices down into the mixture. You will begin to see the jalapeños turn color. 

After 15 minutes transfer the jalapeños to a jar using tongs and pour the remaining liquid over the top. Let cool completely before putting the lid on. So good!!💃🏻

Adapted from: Simply Scratch

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