Everyday Mom's Meals: December 2019

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Sloppy Joe With A Twist

Since we always have ground beef in the freezer, at least once a week I cook a meal using it. Sometimes more than once. And one of the things that always comes to mind when I am looking for my weekly hamburger recipe is sloppy joes...duh! 

We love a good sloppy joe, and I have found some unique ways to serve them. My Sloppy Potatoes and Mexican Sloppy Joes to just name a couple. And now we have another oh so yummy way to get our sloppy on.

A good Philly Cheese Steak isn't the easiest thing to come by here in Northern Indiana, but it remains one of our favorite sandwiches of all time, and inspired this mama to find a way to get those flavors in a whole new way!

Yep, we're taking the tasty stuff from a dripping good cheese steak, and putting them into a ground meat mixture instead.

These come together in almost no time, so perfect for the hustle and bustle of this time of year! 

Don't be afraid to take a classic loved dish and switch it up just a little bit. You never know what new favorite you'll find!

Philly Sloppy Joes
1 lb. ground beef
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 (4oz.) jar sliced mushrooms, chopped
2 TBS butter
1 medium white onion, chopped
1 tsp. steak seasoning
1 TBS Worcestershire sauce
2 TBS ketchup
1 c. beef broth
1 TBS cornstarch
Salt and Pepper
Hamburger Buns, toasted
Provolone cheese

In a small bowl combine beef broth and cornstarch. Whisk until combined. Set aside. In a large skillet brown beef until no longer pink. Season with salt, pepper and steak seasoning. Remove from skillet. Melt butter. Saute' onions, peppers and mushrooms until soft, about 5-7 minutes. Add beef back to skillet with Worcestershire and ketchup. Stir well. Increase heat to high. Add beef broth mixture and stir constantly until slightly thickened. Assemble sandwiches, leaving tops off. Place in warm oven for a few minutes to melt cheese.

Inspired by Fox Valley Foodie

Shared at Weekend Potluck

Sunday, December 22, 2019

EMM Christmas Greetings

Whew. I can't believe we've only got 3 more days to wait. I hope the hustle and bustle of the season is starting to slow down and you are able to enjoy this festive week.

Are you hosting a big Christmas feast? What is your family's traditional Christmas Eve or Christmas Day meal? There are so many yummy choices, and this side dish would go perfectly with most!

When I planned this post I had two things in mind. One, it would be an incredibly tasty side with ham, which I find a majority of people make this time of year. And two, it cooks itself in your slow cooker, so easy on the host and saves some oven/stove space too!

If you have to travel with a dish, this would work great too! You can simply prepare at home, and then plug back in when you get there. It's really a can't fail dish everyone will love!

Don't think this is the creamed corn our parents heated up out of a can! It is so much more! In fact, if you've tried my Skillet Creamed Corn, this is similar, but making it in the slow cooker is so handy when you're doing a huge meal.

No matter what you're cooking over the holiday, we hope it's yummy and shared with those you love most in this world.

We want to thank you for supporting our EMM family for another year, and letting us come into your homes and share our lives with you.

May the peace, love and joy that came to earth all those years ago, in a tiny baby boy, surround you this week and fill your hearts in the year to come.

From our family to yours....

Merry Christmas!!!

Crock Pot Creamed Corn
1 (32 oz.) bag frozen corn
8 oz. cream cheese, softened, cut into chunks
1/4 c. butter, softened, cut into chunks
1 (4 oz.) can evaporated milk
1 TBS sugar
Salt and Pepper
Dried Parsley

Combine all ingredients except salt, pepper and parsley in slow cooker. Cook on LOW for 6 hours, stirring a few times. Season with salt and pepper in middle of cooking. Garnish with parsley. 

Sunday, December 15, 2019

So Much Ground Beef

I've shared with you many times how we are blessed to have "freezer beef" on hand all the time. I seriously don't know what I would do if I had to by ground beef, steaks, roasts, etc. at the supermarket every time I needed them. I know for sure my grocery budget would explode, and because of that I'm sure some of our favorite meals wouldn't happen as often as we like.

The last time we filled the freezer, is when this recipe happened. But there is a tiny back story first. Every year for Mr. E's birthday, I make his favorite Beef Stroganoff. Well, this year when his special day rolled around in July, we were uber busy, and I was a bad wife. I forgot. Thankfully, I am a great wife in many other ways, so it was over looked.

Fast forward several months later and I decided I needed to make it up to him. Great. Crock Pot Beef Stroganoff makes a tasty, hearty meal on a chilly night too. But when I went to the freezer...no round steak, which is what I always make it with. However, there was a ton of hamburger.

I had seen other people make stroganoff with ground beef a lot, so I knew it wasn't totally out of the realm of possibility, I just wasn't sure how the boys would like it since they are so used to the original.

Well, I am so happy I took a chance because we all loved it! I'm talking lick our plates clean like. Mr. E agreed it was a nice alternative, and for us, a great way to use up the ground beef we always seem to have extra of.

Sometimes taking a favorite dish and switching it up just a little is exactly what we need to keep that meal plan exciting...and of course delicious!

Ground Beef Stroganoff
2 lbs. ground beef
1 lb. white mushrooms, sliced
1 medium white onion, finely chopped
1 packet onion soup mix
1 tsp. garlic powder
4 c. beef broth
7 TBS cornstarch*
7 TBS cold water*
1 c. sour cream
Salt and Pepper
Cooked Egg Noodles
Dried Parsley

In a large skillet or Dutch oven, brown beef with onions until no longer pink. Season with soup mix, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Add mushrooms and cook for 3-5 minutes more until they start to brown. Add broth, increase heat to high and bring to a boil. In a small bowl whisk together cornstarch and water until smooth. (This is a slurry.) While beef mixture boils, slowly add slurry mix stirring constantly until it starts to thicken. (This should happen quickly.) Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in sour cream. Serve or egg noodles and garnish with parsley. *NOTE* This is the amount of cornstarch and water I used to get the thickness we like. You might need to use more/less depending on what your family prefers.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Soup Season

When I shared this picture on my personal Facebook page, I got so many comments of "Do your boys actually eat the spinach?" Um...while I know this answer is going to make many of you hate me, yes, yes they do. And not only do they eat it, they love it! Yep, even the toddler.

What can I say? I was blessed with little foodies, just like their parents. I truly believe God knows our limits...and He knew having picky eaters in the house wasn't something this mama could handle, so he took one less thing off my plate, so to speak. And to those who do struggle with whining and complaining at every meal, my heart goes out to you.

With soup season being upon us, I have so many recipes I'm pretty sure we could eat soup every single night of the week and I wouldn't run out. But here I am, always thinking of new ways to get a warm bowl of comfort and deliciousness on our table.

If you are looking for more meat free options when it comes to your menu planning, this one is for you. (If you want it truly meatless, be sure to swap out the chicken broth for veggie!) However, if you live in a meat loving house like me, don't fret. There is so much flavor, and hearty ingredients nobody will ever miss the meat.

I love the way this looks too, because it's just one of those dishes that you know is going to be as good for you as it is to look at.

Don't worry if the soup section of your recipe box is jammed full. There is always room for one more. And if your kids turn their noses up at the green stuff? Tell them it's Christmas themed and Santa will be sad if they don't eat it. Ha! Just kidding.....sort of...

Crock Pot Italian Bean Soup
2 (32 oz.) boxes chicken broth
2 large carrots, finely chopped
1 small white onion, chopped
2 (15 oz.) cans cannellini beans, drained
1 (8 oz.) bag spinach
2 c. water
1 tsp. dried sage
1 tsp. garlic powder
6 TBS basil pesto
1/2 tsp. dried red pepper
Juice of 2 lemons
Zest of 1 lemon
Salt and Pepper
Dried Parsley
Parmesan Cheese

Combine broth, carrots, onions, water, pesto and seasonings in Crock Pot. Cook on LOW 5-6 hours. 30 minutes before serving, add spinach, beans, lemon juice and zest. Stir well. Garnish with parsley and serve with Parmesan. 

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Post Turkey

So, how many days are you planning on eating those turkey leftovers before you say "NO more!" I will be honest, I love leftovers, and will usually make sandwiches with them for a few days, and then plan one night where we eat all the leftovers and have another mini holiday meal. But after that? I'm done.

Sure, there are a ton of ways to re purpose them too. You can substitute that tasty roasted bird in almost any recipe that calls for cooked chicken, like my Chicken, Broccoli Rice Casserole and Roasted Chicken Noodle Soup.

But after all that turkey, if you're taste buds are calling out for something completely different, these burrito bowls will be such a welcome change. Plus, they will come in handy when you've still got company hanging out for a while. (Or the ones that are coming back in just a few weeks!)

Keep the meat and rice warm, and put out a huge toppings bar! Your guests will love it! And of course, they are perfect for a busy weeknight meal too!

We look forward to that huge holiday meal all year long; and that includes leftovers too. But after that love affair is over, and you want something that doesn't include the words turkey or dressing, reach for your Crock Pot and have a Mexican night at home! 

Crock Pot Smothered Burrito Bowls
2 lbs. ground beef
1/4 c. dried minced onion
1 (10 oz.) can Rotel
2 (15 oz.) cans mild chili beans*
1 tsp. cumin 
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 packet burrito seasoning*
1/2 c. water
 Hot White Rice
Shredded Mexican cheese
Diced Onion
Diced Tomatoes
Pickled Jalapenos
Sour Cream
Salt and Pepper 

In a large skillet brown ground beef until no longer pink. Drain if necessary. Spray a Crock Pot with nonstick spray. Add ground beef, dried onions, chili beans, tomatoes,  seasonings, water, seasoning packet, salt and pepper. Stir well. Cook on LOW 5 hours. Serve over white rice with suggested toppings. *NOTE* Use hot chili beans for more spice. Burrito seasoning packets can usually be found with the other packets, but taco works well too.