Everyday Mom's Meals: May 2016

Thursday, May 19, 2016

On The Go Summer Snacking with Smithfield {A Feature}

We have less than a week of school left. I can't tell you who is more excited, me or the boy, but there is definitely excitement in our house. 

The only downside to having him home with me every single day (and believe me, it's a very small one) is I have to feed him! This kid wants three meals per day, plus snacks in between! And even though it is summer, so of course we treat ourselves now and again, as a mom I also want snacks I can feel good about giving him too. Plus, if they are ones he can enjoy on the go during our busy days, even better. This is where my friends at Smithfield come in.  

Their new line of Ready, Snack, Go! snack packs are exactly what we look for in a convenient, tasty and feed good snack all summer long. They come in 6 flavor varieties of Smithfield lunchmeat paired with fresh cheese. Plus, with a low MSRP of $1, they are budget friendly too! 

My son loves all the flavor combos and different options. He can grab one out of the fridge anytime instead of having to say "Mom, what can I have for a snack?" I love that I can throw some in a cooler for a trip to the splashpad or pool! 

Oh, and they can help with easy lunches and summer time picnic menus too, with Smithfield Anytime Favorites. The quarter boneless sliced ham comes pre-sliced, so it's super easy to use for sandwiches or easy weeknight meal prep. I'm thinking ham salad for our next summer time picnic! 

If summer time snacks and meals have you scratching your head, look no further than these delicious and easy new products from Smithfield for all of your sunny day, on the go, treat needs! 

Disclaimer: I received free samples in exchange for this feature. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Monday, May 16, 2016

BEST Potatoes EVER

Yeah, so that's a pretty big claim, huh?! How can I be so bold? Well, it's because I can honestly say of all the roasted potatoes I've made over the years, and trust me, there have have been a lot, these are hands down the best tasting, most tender, perfectly what I was looking for version.

How did these magical potatoes come to pass? It's simple. The same way most new recipes are coming out of my kitchen these days. Baby cravings!!

For those keeping track, I am now 6 1/2 months pregnant, and yeah, pretty much hungry all the time. When my tongue sets it's sights on something I can't let it go. I obsess about it until the craving is satisfied. Just like with Alex, my cravings aren't really strange or made up of weird combos, they are just foods I love, and when I want them, I want them NOW.

Such was the case with this recipe. I was having Mr. E barbecue a roast on the grill, had our first batch of sweet corn of the summer, and wanted some tasty taters to go with it. I'm not joking when I say I planned this meal on a Wednesday, before my weekly grocery trip, and literally could not stop thinking about it until Sunday when it was finally time to execute.

These come out of the oven with just the right about of crispy outside, but tender, buttery inside. They have such a robust flavor, with only a few ingredients, making them super easy too. Serve them with whatever you've got coming off the grill, from steak to chicken!

I'm sure everyone has that one potato recipe they consider to be the best ever, and right now, for me these are it!

Garlic Roasted Potatoes
3 lbs. honey gold potatoes, or any small yellow potato, quartered
1/4 c. olive oil
6 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and Pepper, to taste
Dried Parsley 

Preheat oven to 400. In a large bowl whisk together oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Leave at room temp for about 5 minutes. Add potatoes and toss to coat. Allow to marinate at room temp for 20 minutes. Transfer to a large baking sheet. Add extra salt and pepper.  Bake for 1 hour, stirring a couple times, until browned and fork tender. Garnish with parsley before serving.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Meatballs Made Easy with Aidells®

I was recently asked by  Aidells® to create a recipe and share their product using it.

As a busy mom, I know how hard it is to find the time to put good food on the table...fast. We all want to feel good about the meals we give our families, but none of us have the time to spend all day in the kitchen. So what's a lady to do? Well, this is when I look to the store for a little help; and this time that meant a trip to my local Meijer store and my new friends at Aidells®.

Aidells® packaged Sausage Links and Meatballs come in unique, bold flavors, have incredible taste, and are made from hand picked ingredients. These aren't your everyday meats! They are also gluten free, contain NO nitrates, and have NO added hormones. For home cooks like me who care about what they see on the ingredient label, that is like icing on the cake! 

I cant' wait to try the sausages too, but this time around I was focusing on meatballs, which come in three tasty varieties, so it's easy to find the one that compliments the dish you're making. 

Aidells®  Meatballs Terriyaki and Pineapple (12oz)

Aidells®  Meatballs Italian Style with Mozzarella (12oz) 

Aidells®  Meatballs Caramelized Onion (12oz)

For me, they were super easy to find at Meijer, next to the " butcher" counter, not too far from the other packaged meats. 

 Oh, and right now you can get a $1/1 coupon through mPerks to make these even more budget friendly! This promotion runs from 5/1-5/28, so make sure you get to Meijer quick! Plus, on 5/1 there will be live in-store demos as well!

So, now that I have your attention, and probably drooling, I know you are wondering what did I choose to make with these yummy meatballs. Well, I had a rustic, hearty, but still simple meal on the brain, so I decided to try the Italian Style with Mozzarella.

This dish will have your family convinced you were sweating over the stove all day, when in reality you can have it on the table in about an hour. You can even make the sauce the day ahead to save even more time! (See notes in recipe.) Plus, since the meatballs are fully cooked, once the sauce is ready, you simply have to warm them in it for about 10 minutes to have a finished marinara with meatballs ready to go! 

So, if you're looking for a way to get dinner on the table in an easy, time friendly, but still delicious way, that you can feel good about...be sure to download that mPerks offer, head to Meijer and bring some Aidells® meatballs home today! 

Gnocchi with Meatballs
 2 (1 lb.) packages potato gnocchi
2 (28 oz.) cans crushed tomatoes
2 (12 oz.) packages Aidells® Italian Style Meatballs
2 celery stalks, cut in half
2 carrots, peeled and cut in half
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 medium white onion, peeled, left whole
2 dry bay leaves
2 TBS butter
Salt and Pepper to taste
Dried Parsley
Parmesan cheese

In a large pot or dutch oven, combine tomatoes, onion, celery, carrots, bay leaves, garlic, salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Cook on low for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Add butter, stir well. Add meatballs and allow to cook for 8-10 minutes. Meanwhile, bring another large pot of water to boil. Cook gnocchi according to package directions. Drain well. Serve meatball sauce over gnocchi. Garnish with dried parsley. Serve Parmesan cheese on side. *NOTE* You can make the sauce a day ahead, cool and refrigerate. When ready, warm on stove top over low, add meatballs and follow remainder of recipe.


This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Tyson. The opinions and text are all mine.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Mother's Day Cookout

Yes, if you haven't been paying attention to the calendar, we are now only 6 days away from Mother's Day. (For you guys out there, I know what you're thinking..."Oh good, I've still got 5 more days to shop!") But some of us are already planning how we will treat mom to a special day; and for many of us, that will include a meal!

If we are lucky here in Indiana, and the weather cooperates, we will actually be having a cookout with my parents to celebrate the day. With this being the first Mother's Day my mom is without hers (Grandma passed away back in March) we wanted to make sure mom has an extra happy day with all of us around.

What type of meal are you planning for Sunday? If it includes any type of grilling out, or barbecuing, have I got a treat for you. Mom love tater salad? Well then, have I got a treat for her!

This was actually a recipe I came up with for my little guy. He LOVES loaded mashed potatoes, and had been asking me to make them for weeks. But to be honest, I'm in total "summer time" foods mode. All I can think about are dishes that show up more when it's warm out. I don't care if the weather hasn't been cooperating, it is what my taste buds are craving.

So, simple solution. Take all the same flavors and put them into a backyard barbecue, picnic in the park, cookout take along, friendly potato salad. After all, potatoes, cheese, onions and bacon are going to be mouth watering delicious any way you serve them!

Rather you're looking for some side dishes for mom's special day, or planning ahead for those graduation parties and family reunions this summer, this will definitely be one you want to keep in mind!

Loaded Potato Salad
7 medium Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 lb. bacon, cooked crispy and chopped, reserve a little for garnish
3 large green onions, chopped
1 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese, reserve a little for garnish
3/4 c. sour cream
6 TBS mayo
Salt and Pepper to taste
Dried Chives, for garnish

In a large pot, cover potatoes with cold water. Bring to a boil and cook until just fork tender. Drain and rinse with cold water. Set in fridge until completely cool. Mix potatoes, bacon, green onions and cheese in a large bowl. In a medium bowl stir together sour cream, mayo, salt and pepper.  Pour over potato mixture and mix well. Garnish with extra cheese, bacon and chives. Chill at least 2 hours before serving.