Everyday Mom's Meals: November 2020

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Turkey Burn Out

 Do you still have some holiday turkey sitting in the fridge? Have you been eating it every day since Thursday? Are you tried of it yet? Looking for something to switch up the menu plan this week? Have you come to the right place! 

For the past few years I have really embraced making baked potatoes in a main dish for simple supper. We top them with yummy things like broccoli and cheese, or even sloppy jo mix, add some simple side dishes and dinner is done. Believe me when I say a stuffed spud with a side salad or cup of soup can make a filling meal after a long day.

These came to be when I had an extra package of store bought pulled pork in the fridge. Have you tried the pre-packaged barbecue pork? I have to admit, it is pretty darn good! I have found some really delicious ones at Kroger, Aldi and Walmart. There is no shame in taking a little help from the store now and again. The only complaint we ever have about the store bought pulled pork is the lack of sauce. We like ours extra saucy, so I always add a cup of our favorite barbecue sauce when heating it up. 

If you have leftover pork, that would certainly work perfectly too. In fact, if you have shred some of that holiday turkey and mix it with barbecue, I bet it would be delicious too! 

The first time I ever made these, my oldest deemed them "cowboy potatoes" because he said they reminded him of a pulled pork nacho he had at a food truck at school, and those were called "Cowboy Nachos". I'm not sure cowboys would approve or not, but a fun name only adds to the appeal! 

After so much cooking last week, put some ease into your menu this week. A simple baked potato can be transformed into something extra special and yummy. Lay out a bunch of toppings and let everyone assemble their own, for even less work for you!  


Cowboy Potato Bar

4 large baking potatoes

1/4 c. olive oil

1 lb. barbecued pulled pork, store bought or left over

1 c. barbecue sauce


Sour Cream

Green Onions

Pickled Jalapenos

Shredded Cheese

Preheat oven to 400. Scrub each potato and dry. Baste each potato with 1 TBS oil and sprinkle with salt. Wrap in foil and cut a slit on the top. Bake for 1-1.5 hours until fork tender. In a large skillet over medium heat, warm pork through, adding the extra barbecue sauce if necessary. When potatoes are cooked, cut open and add pork and toppings. 


Shared at Weekend Potluck

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Happy Thanksgiving 2020

 We have arrived at the biggest foodie week of the year. My turkey is thawing in the fridge and my menu is set. (If your turkey is still in the deep freezer, consider this your friendly reminder!) 

There is no doubt Thanksgiving is going to look very different this year, for so many of us. But I am determined to make sure it is still a special, and delicious day for my family. A big (all 18 lbs of it!) beautifully roasted bird, green bean casserole, fluffy mashed potatoes, homemade gravy, cranberry sauce, stuffing, and dinner rolls will be hitting our table. Oh, and thanks to a delivery from my mom, her pumpkin pie complete with a tub of Cool Whip! 

No matter if your celebration is scaled back this year, or like me, you are cooking the same amount of food and just thankful for leftovers, if you're still searching for one more side dish, that one last thing to round out your menu, this tasty squash recipe could definitely be what you are looking for! 

We are big squash lovers around here. All kinds, Cooked all ways. But when I saw the addition of cranberries and pecans to this one, I knew it had to be the annual EMM Thanksgiving recipe. Squash, cranberries AND pecans...that screams turkey day to me! Autumn inspired flavors and such a pretty dish too. 

The maple syrup gives this a little extra hint of sweetness, and you can even serves some extra warmed syrup on the side for drizzling if your guests want more. 

However you are choosing to celebrate Thanksgiving this year, there is no doubt it has been a HARD year; but we all still have so much to be thankful for. Sure, there are days when those things are hard to focus on when it seems like the world is on fire. But for this one day, I hope we can all take a breath, look around at all we've been blessed with, tell those we love how much they mean, and eat ourselves into a happy food coma! 

Roasted Butternut Squash with Pecans and Cranberries

1 4-5 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed

1 c. chopped pecans

1/2 c. dried cranberries

2 TBS olive oil

3 TBS maple syrup, extra for serving

Salt and Pepper

 Preheat oven to 400. In a large bowl combine squash, oil, salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Transfer to large baking sheet.  Roast for 20-30 minutes. Drizzle with syrup and sprinkle with pecans and cranberries. Bake for 10-15 minutes more until squash is fork tender. Serve with extra maple syrup on side if desired. 

 Shared at Weekend Potluck

Inspired by Sue Bee Homemaker

Sunday, November 15, 2020

New Casserole, Old Favorite

When I first made this recipe for my family well over a month ago, I knew I had to wait to post it. We will get to why in a minute, but when I tell you, you will appreciate it so much!

I love a good ol' fashion chicken pot pie. Warm, thick filling, flaky crust...we are talking the epitome of comfort food. A classic recipe that has truly withstood the test of time. 

And while I have a great recipe for the traditional version, I was in the mood for something a little easier. For years we've also enjoyed a short cut recipe that is topped with biscuits for busy weeknights. So I decided to take the pie version, cross it with the casserole one and wah-lah, something brand new and delicious.

 This even comes with a couple short cuts to make dinner time as stress free as possible. You can certainly use a homemade crust you love, but store bought work just fine. Plus, you can prepare the chicken and potatoes earlier in the day, or even the night before to save yourself some time. 

 I love using the boneless chicken thighs because the are inexpensive AND have great flavor, but if you are a fan of white mean, boneless breasts or tenders would work just as well.

Now, to the reason why I've left this sitting in my drafts folder for weeks? Leftovers. See, while I made this will roasted chicken, your leftover Thanksgiving turkey would be a great substitute. And if you bought extra potatoes and extra veggies for your holiday meal, those could be used up to. You could clean out the fridge post Turkey Day and have a terrific casserole supper all in one shot! 

 Chicken Pot Pie Casserole

 2 lbs boneless chicken thighs

2 TBS olive oil

1/4 c. butter

1/4 c. flour

1 c. milk

1 1/2 c. chicken broth

2 potatoes, peeled, cubed

12 oz. bag frozen peas and carrots

2 frozen pie crusts, brought to room temp

1 egg, beaten

1 TBS water 

Dried parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

 Preheat oven to 350. Drizzle chicken with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast on a baking sheet for 30 minutes. Cool and dice. Set aside.  In a medium pot, cover potatoes with cold water. Bring to a boil and cook until just fork tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside. In a large skillet melt butter. Add flour and stir and cook for 1 minute. Add 1/2 cup milk and 1/2 cup broth, whisking continually while it comes to a boil. Add remaining broth and milk. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil again. Lower heat to simmer and cook 5 minutes. Add cooked chicken, potatoes and frozen veggies. Stir well to combine. Grease 9x13 baking dish. Transfer chicken mixture to dish. Roll out pie crust and cut into 1/4 inch strips. Cover chicken with crust in a lattice pattern. Whisk egg and water together and baste top of crust. Sprinkle with dried parsley. Bake for 45 minutes or until top is golden brown.  *NOTE* I cooked both my chicken and potatoes earlier in the day to save steps!

 Shared at Weekend Potluck

Sunday, November 8, 2020

Turkey Day Side Dish

Can you believe Thanksgiving is only a little over 2 weeks away? I swear, as soon as Halloween is over, it's a downward coast to the holiday season and they come, and pass quicker and quicker every year. 

There is no doubt Turkey Day will look different for so many this year, but no matter if you're only cooking for your immediate family, having a few guests over, or going for a traditional family gathering, menus need to be planned. And even if you are only cooking or a few, it is still a holiday, and your meal can still be special, delicious and festive. 

In that spirit, I've got a couple new side dishes coming your way before Thanksgiving, and this is the first. A sweet and savory version of autumns favorite spud, the sweet potato. This is perfect to make for a small gathering, or easily double or triple it! 

Sweet potatoes have been on holiday tables for years, and finding new ways to enjoy them can give your meal a little breath of freshness. Tradition means so much when planning a holiday meal, so it's great when you find ways to enjoy the same dishes you have for years, just in a new way.

 The reason I chose this dish (and a outstanding squash recipe later this month) is because not only would they be perfect alongside that big roasted bird, but a nice glazed ham as well. I wanted to give you double the dishes this time of year. If you are planning turkey now, ham for Christmas, or ham instead of turkey, or both...now you've got some dishes that would be so good with either. 

However you are planning on spending Thanksgiving this year, it is coming fast, and I hope you are looking forward to it. Even if you have find joy in a new way of celebrating. Surround yourself with love, happiness, gratefulness and some yummy food!

 Cinnamon & Honey Roasted Sweet Potatoes

4 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed

1/4 c. olive oil

1/4 c. honey

2 tsp. cinnamon

Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 375. Toss all ingredients in a large bowl until well combined. Transfer to a large baking sheet. Roast for 30 minutes until fork tender.


 Shared at Weekend Potluck

Sunday, November 1, 2020

Quarantine Discovery

Raise your hand if you gained a little weight during the spring lock down/quarantine. Yes, I am raising mine too. And let's be totally honest, the months that followed that time were filled with reasons to indulge in yummy foods too. And now, the holidays are quickly approaching, with their delicious meals and sweet treats, so we really have no reason to stop now. 

Before March and Covid came to town, Alex and I had never had Chipotle. Yeah, I know, apparently we were living under a rock. I don't even have a good reason why since we have two about 10 minutes from home that we constantly drive by. 

Regardless of the reason, we had never tasted the deliciousness that is their food until we were stuck at home every single day, and lunch time became what we looked forward to every day because I was finding places that would deliver. Literally, we would wake up in the morning and start looking at menus to decide what we wanted. Oh, and I had never ordered delivery (except pizza) from a restaurant until this time too. It was like whole new world opened up! 

Chipotle was hands down the place we ordered from the most, and now 8 months later, I still do once every couple weeks. Alex fell in love with their burritos as big as his head, I can't get enough of their burrito bowls and Max loves a great quesadilla. 

But this mama still has a budget she needs to try to maintain, so I had to find a way to recreate some of their great food at home. This barbacoa beef is so spot on, if I hadn't told Alex I had made it I bet he would have never known! 

I love when dishes fill the house with drool worthy aromatics, and oh boy does this ever do that! It would be delicious in tacos, burritos, or on nachos, but I decided I would make my favorite burrito bowls this time around. You can certainly customize these to include your favorite ingredients, and even make it more fun by letting everyone create their own. This is simply the combo we love the most. 

With the holiday season quickly approaching there will be many nights supper needs to be quick, yummy and effortless. Combine all of those plus a slow cooker meal AND Mexican night into one meal that your family will love. Oh, and if you do have guests coming into town, you're going to need to feed them for a few days too!

 Crock Pot Barbacoa Beef

3 lb. arm chuck roast

3 medium chipotle peppers in adobo sauce 

2 tsp. adobo sauce

1/2 c. chicken broth

2 1/2 tsp. minced garlic

2 TBS apple cider vinegar

Juice of 2 limes

1 TBS dried oregano

2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. ground cloves

2 dried whole bay leaves

2 TBS vegetable oil

Salt and pepper to taste 

1 (12 oz. ) bag frozen corn, thawed

1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 lb. container pico de gallo

1 cup shredded white quesadilla cheese

Cooked White Rice

Spray Crock Pot with nonstick spray. In a large skillet, heat oil on high. Pat roast dry and season with salt and pepper. When oil is hot, brown roast on both sides, about 3-4 minutes each. Place in Crock Pot. In blender or food processor, combine vinegar, broth, peppers, adobo sauce, garlic, lime juice, oregano, cumin, salt and pepper. Blend until combined. Pour over roast. Add bay leaves. Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours. When cooked, carefully shred meat with two forks. Mix into sauce and continue cooking for another hour. Remove bay leaves, stir and serve over rice. Top with beans, corn, pico de gallo and cheese. Serve with limes, sour cream and favorite salsa on side. This recipe is enough to make 4-6 burrito bowls.

Shared at Weekend Potluck

Shared at Meal Plan Monday