Tag Archives: Pasta

Turkey, Broccoli and Cheddar Cheese Casserole

Last night, I got home from work and was STARVING. I wanted to again, keep chipping away at the food that was sitting in my freezer and my cabinets. So I grabbed some pasta shells, frozen broccoli, and some ground turkey that I had sitting around. This, is what I came up with, a Turkey Casserole that I will be eating for the next week because there is so much of it. But, it turned out AMAZING. Normally, I’m a tuna casserole gal, but I may be switching over to this baby as a fav.

Turkey Casserole

 

Ingredients:

1 Box of Shell Pasta 1 Can of Condensed Cheese Soup
1 Package of Frozen Broccoli 1 Can of Non-Fat Milk
1 Pound of Ground Turkey 3/4 Cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese
1 Tablespoon Onion Powder 1 Tsp Garlic Salt
Salt and Pepper to Taste 1/4 Cup Bread Crumbs

Directions:

1. Boil water, and cook the pasta according to the directions on the box. Steam the broccoli in a separate pan (or in the microwave which is how I did it). And cook the ground turkey in a large pan. I used 1 tablespoon of Olive oil to keep the turkey moist. Season it with some salt and pepper to taste.

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2. Once each item is cooked, mix them together in a large baking pan. Add the condensed cheese soup and a can full of non-fat milk. Stir until it is well mixed. Then add the onion powder and garlic salt to the mix. Finally add in the cheddar cheese and stir well. The cheese does not have to completely melt into the pasta mix.

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3. Lastly, top it off with the bread crumbs and put it into the oven at 375 degrees for 25 minutes.

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The purpose of putting the casserole in the oven is to heat it all the way through and brown the top. The oven is going to give it that casserole taste.

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Brent and I ate this sucker and were so full after a single bowl. It was nuts. But delish. With just about every bite he was gushing over how good it was. I was really happy with the way it came out as well. I am going to be eating this for lunch and dinner for a while.

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While I was cooking, my little friend Hunter was playing around in the brown paper bag that was sitting on the counter. At first he jumped into it, but didn’t realize that it wasn’t all the way on the counter. The paper bag and Hunter went falling to the ground. The bag actually landed directly on top of Hunter, at which point, Hunter started freaking out…resulting in a paper bag that took on it’s own life. Very scary to Oreo. Oreo started barking at the moving paper bag and Hunter eventually found his way out, giving Oreo a swift smack on the nose. The whole sequence of events was HILARIOUS. I only caught the after math of Hunter chilling out in his paper cave.

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He wasn’t a huge fan of my paparazzi action and curled up into the bag after I snapped this glowing photo of him.

 

Have you ever just pulled a few ingredients out the fridge and ended up with something unexpectedly yummy??

 

 

A Quick Macaroni Dinner

After I ran out the door to a few meetings for the afternoon and then started on a few errands. The pups were in need of some food, so Brent and I stopped by our local pet store to grab a bag. Whenever I go to the pet store, I usually walk out with some unnecessary toy, treat or dress up thing. I love using the dogs for my own amusement…it’s terrible but its fun…for me. 🙂

Today, I picked up some treats. Bones to be exact.

 

 

Bacon always gets spoiled with the bigger and the baddest. How crazy is that thing?!

After the pet store, we headed back and I whipped us up some dinner. It was REALLY quick because that’s about all I had in mind. When I get hungry, I get cranky. I will whip my head around because you asked me what time it was. Seriously. You don’t want to get in between my food and me when this girl is hungry.

So I made some macaroni with a ragu alfredo sauce, salmon and a whole bunch of broccoli. From the look that I got from Brent, you would have thought that I had made something from the heavens. But it took me no time at all to throw together.

 

It did turn out well. I topped it off with some grated parmesan cheese and bread crumbs. Great move I think.

For the rest of the night, I’m just sipping on some tea and catching up on a little reading. I have an early morning tomorrow and will most likely be to bed early!

 

How do you spoil your pets?? Fun treats?? Dress them up?? Take them to parks??

I spoil the dogs like crazy. But I have to say dressing them up and just playing around with them is my favorite. The happier they are, the more fun I’m having. Well…besides when I put eyebrows on Bacon…that was definitely for my own enjoyment!

 

Officially Pumpkin Nuts

It’s official, not even debatable, and I am willing to accept it. I have gone pumpkin crazy. I think once I open a can of pumpkin puree I feel the need to use it before it goes bad…and well…it just spirals out of control.

For dinner, I was inspired to make a Pumpkin Mac N Cheese. Seriously. Think of a light cheese topping with a twang of pumpkin and that’s what I made 🙂 Not nearly as bad for you as a typical Mac N Cheese either!

 

Ingredients:

8-10 Ounces Elbow Pasta 1/2 Cup Pumpkin Puree
1/2 Cup Low Sodium Chicken Broth 1/4 Cup Non Fat Milk
1 Teaspoon Butter 1/4 Teaspoon Onion Powder
Dash of Salt and Pepper 1/4 Teaspoon Nutmeg
Pinch of Cinnamon 1/4 Teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice
Pinch of Ground Ginger 1/4 Cup Cheddar Cheese
Top with Parmesan Cheese

Directions:

1. Boil some water and cook the elbow macaroni according to the box directions. While the pasta is cooking, heat up the pumpkin puree, chicken broth, milk, butter, onion powder, nutmeg, salt and pepper, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, ground ginger and cheddar cheese in a small sauce pan.

 

 

2. Once the pasta is cooked and the sauce is heated throughout, drain the pasta and mix in the pumpkin sauce.

 

 

This will make a solid 3 servings, if not 4. I topped mine off with some grated parmesan cheese and sprinkled some cinnamon on top. The parmesan cheese really added some texture to it. It was delicious! I would definitely make this one again.

 

 

 

And juuuusst in case that wasn’t enough pumpkin for the week, I ended my meal with some pumpkin pie ice cream. I wish I was kidding.

 

 

After finishing that meal, I kind of wish today wasn’t my rest day for workouts. OH WELLLLL.

I told you I went pumpkin nuts. And guess what…I have a half a can that’s open and ready to be used.

Tonight, I’ve got some costume shopping to do for tomorrow and I feel some tea calling my name. I feel a bit of a cold coming on and I really need to nip that in the butt.

What’s your favorite pumpkin flavored dish?? Is it a dessert?? Dinner meal?? Or side dish??

 

 

 

Spicy Mexican Pasta Salad

Give me some spice tonight! This morning was a hectic one. I practically ran out the door, coffee in hand. Grabbed some Pita Pit for lunch…yummy. And raced home in hopes I could get some additional stuff done. Looks like there’s just not enough hours in the day…

But for dinner! I decided to really turn up the heat with this spicy Mexican Pasta Salad. I automatically knew that I wanted to do a pasta dish, but when I started, had no idea I would cook this delectable guy up.

 

 

Ingredients:

2 Cups Whole Wheat Penne Pasta 3/4 Cup Frozen Corn
1/2 Cup Non-Fat Greek Yogurt 1/3 Cup Hot Chucnky Salsa
3/4 Cup Black Beans, drained 1 Medium Tomato

Directions:

1. Boil the pasta and when it is about cooked, add in the frozen corn, stirring occasionally. While the pasta is cooking, in a small bowl, mix the greek yogurt and the salsa.

 

2. When the pasta is cooked, mix the pasta, chopped tomato, corn and black beans in a medium sized bowl. Top with the dressing.

 

 

And you are done! It’s really that easy! Some other topping that you can consider putting into the pasta mix as well:

1/2 Cup Cubed or Shredded Cheddar Cheese 1 Chopped Zucchini
1 Tablespoon Lime Juice 1 Tablespoon Cilantro
1 Medium Chopped Green Pepper 1 Medium Chopped Red Pepper

 

Let your mind go wild, or just throw in what you have sitting in your fridge. If you aren’t a huge fan of spicy foods, substitute a mild or medium chunky salsa instead. I love spicy foods, so hot salsa it was. The pictures don’t do the pasta much justice. Pasta with a cream sauce is really difficult to make pretty!

This meal will probably take you about 20 minutes to make, and you can get a good 4 servings out of it. Definitely enough for some leftovers for me.

I didn’t end up getting my butt to the gym this morning and my knee is feeling a bit off today…so I did a quick elliptical workout. It really made the time go by fast.

To break it down…It’s 30 seconds for the resting steps at resistance 8 and 10. Then 1 full minute for the high anaerobic resistance at 14.

Now for some tea, and a but more computer work….MER.

What’s your favorite type of pasta?? Is it spicy, cheesy or tomatoey???

I’m a big fan of all types! Not really an answer but I can’t seem to get enough of raviolis!

Apple Quinoa and Interval Track Workout

Thursday, mer. For some reason I feel like Thursdays are the longest days of the week. Jumping out of bed…probably not going to happen on a Thursday. And, well, it just didn’t happen today. I woke up and just zombied my way into the kitchen to fire up the coffee pot. THAT, was when I realized that a few days ago my aunt had sent me a yummy looking breakfast recipe. I had printed it out, and shoved it in my bag to remind me that apples needed to be purchased. They were purchased, and this morning was the morning to give it a try.

It is a Sweet Apple Quinoa and it was a really different take on it than I have had before. I changed it up a bit from the original, because I wanted to make it Vegan friendly and I don’t really think that any recipe is ever finished. You can always give them a little tweek.

Ingredients:

1/4 Cup Uncooked Quinoa 1 Teaspoon Vegan Butter
1/2 Apple, Chopped 3/4 Cup of Water
Pinch of Cinnamon 1 Tablespoon Light Brown Sugar
1 Tablespoon Almond Milk

Directions:

1. Rinse the Quinoa. Then, in a small saucepan, heat up 3/4 Cup of water with the Quinoa. Bring it to a boil for a minute, then reduce the heat to a simmer for 5-10 minutes. When the quinoa shows a little tail at the end of each piece, it is done.

2. Heat up a skillet and melt the butter. Add the apples to the skillet and cook them until they are at the desired texture. I really gave them a good cooking 🙂

3. Once the Quinoa is done cooking, mix in the brown sugar, milk, and cinnamon. Then stir in the apples and Bon Apetit!

While I was cooking this up, I looked down at the puppies. They literally sit right in front of the stove whenever I am making something. I thought the Oreo looked particularly cute and wanted to snap a picture to share. Apparently the flash was a bit too bright for Oreo’s eyes this morning:

Too Bright!!! Come on…she’s kind of cute…

After coming home, STARVING because I hadn’t eaten lunch the past two days in the office, I decided to pack myself a little snack and lunch. Whenever I am really looking for something to snack on when I’m on the road, I stop at Publix and grab one of the hummus and flat pretzel packs they have there. I absolutely love them because they are extremely portable and a healthy snack. They fill you up, and you don’t feel bad about what you just did afterwards. Unfortunately, I didn’t have one sitting around, so I just made my own!

It’s my favorite snack. Better than chips, but you still get that great chip crunch. And the hummus flavor you can change up all the time. This was a Red Pepper Hummus.

On the hummus roll (I really like hummus if you couldn’t tell already) I made an easy Veggie sandwich with a Garlic Hummus. I piled on some green peppers and sprouts on a honey wheat english muffin. Delish.

These two little meals really got me through the day. BUT, I was still planning on how I was going to dress up the leftover pasta from last night. I mean, I do have 3/4 of a pound of pasta sitting in my fridge and you can only have so much before you are all fed up. So what I did was, cook up some crumbles (fake red meat that I think is better than ground beef), some leftover red sauce from my experimenting with red sauce the other week, goat cheese, and parmesan cheese. IT was MOUTH WATERING. The leftover red sauce is very garlic and full of flavor. The goat cheese really played off the flavor perfectly.

I know it might not look all the full of yum, but I was really in love with the flavor. For desert, I may have eaten 4 too many cookies. Don’t do it. It’s not worth it.

To finish up the day, and to digest some of those cookies, whoops, I headed out to the high school track. I wanted to get in a quick workout before it got dark, but it needed to count. This Interval Track Workout will do just that. You will run a little over 2 miles and be exhausted by the end of it.

It’s a great workout to rev the metabolism and it’s a quick one. You can really get through this in 25 minutes. It’s a nice way to mix up the treadmill workouts and long distance runs.

I really want to give this Body Pump class a go. That is the next thing on the workout To-DO list.It’s a great workout to rev the metabolism and it’s a quick one. You can really get through this in 25 minutes. It’s a nice way to mix up the treadmill workouts and long distance runs.