It’s ‘Crack Dip’ Season!

Buffalo Chicken Dip

YEEEESSSSSS. Blame it on the pregnancy cravings (give me all things Buffalo!), or the Super Bowl season, but I am PUMPED about Buffalo Chicken Dip, aka, Crack Dip. I only make it once a year for the Super Bowl, but I crave it year round. Don’t forget to make some for your Super Bowl bash! It’ll be the hit of the party!

Here’s a few more of my favorite football foods that would be equally as awesome for your party:

Baked Tex-Mex Pimento Cheese Dip

Cheesy Pepperoni Bread

Bananas Foster Nachos. These are seriously AH-MA-ZING.

Bananas Foster Nachos

BBQ Bacon-Wrapped Jalapenos

Baked Chicken Empanadas

Chicken Enchilada Dip Roll-Ups

Happy Super Bowl party planning, everybody! May you enjoy your fatty dips, quesos, and deep-fried stuff as much as I will! :)

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Ham and Cheese Roll-Ups…

Ham and Cheese Roll-Ups

Here is the second of the two kid-friendly recipes I promised this week. I’ve actually been making these a lot, simply because we get tired of plain old sandwiches for lunch. Joel works from home, so I struggle with trying to think up tasty, quick lunches all week.

I don’t make these too often, because, clearly, they’re not the healthiest, but when you’ve got a teething toddler who doesn’t have any interest in eating all of the sudden, you’ll do what you can to make meals fun. However, I do use the reduced fat crescent rolls for these instead of the regular. Cassidy still hasn’t gotten past pulling her’s apart and eating the meat and cheese separate- but hey, whatever keeps her happy, I guess. :)

Ham and Cheese Roll-Ups 2

Ham and Cheese Roll-Ups

1 roll refrigerated reduced fat crescent roll dough, such as Pillsbury
mustard
8 slices deli ham
8 slices cheddar or swiss cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Unroll the crescent dough and spread a little mustard on each triangle. Lay a slice of ham, then cheese on each triangle, then roll up, starting with the wide end. Place on a baking sheet and bake for about 11-13 minutes, until golden brown. Serves 2-3 as a lunch; or 6-8 as a snack.

Recipe source: Gooseberry Patch’s Kids in the Kitchen cookbook

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Baked Tacos…

Oven Baked Tacos

I don’t know about you (actually, I’m pretty sure I do), but I get most of my meal planning ideas from Pinterest. On the days I go grocery shopping, I’ll sit down and peruse my ‘Food’ board for ideas as I make my shopping list. I think I have 2 or 3 different versions of this recipe pinned. As much as we love tacos in this house, I’m shocked I haven’t made these before now. I love the idea of refried beans mixed in with the meat filling, and I love that this recipe doesn’t call for the cardboard-like, boxed pre-made taco shells. You make your own crisp shells right on the oven rack! Genius! These were soooo good topped with a little salsa and sour cream and I can’t wait to make them again!

photo copy

Baked Tacos

2 pounds lean ground beef
1 can refried beans
1/2 cup salsa
1 package taco seasoning or 2 – 3 Tablespoons of homemade taco seasoning
shredded cheese
15-18 corn tortillas

Make the taco shells: Preheat oven to 375. Place tortillas in a damp paper towel and microwave for 30 seconds. Spray each tortilla with cooking spray and carefully drape over two bars of the oven rack. Cook for about 7-10 minutes, until crispy.

Meanwhile, brown ground beef. Drain off any fat and add refried beans, salsa, and seasoning.
Spoon mixture into taco shells and place into a 9×13 pan, standing up. Sprinkle with cheese.
Bake at 400 for 10-12 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted. Top with your favorite taco toppings (sour cream, salsa, lettuce, etc.). Serves around 5-6.

Recipe source: slightly adapted from One Good Thing by Jillee

Oven Baked Tacos 2

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Baked Tex-Mex Pimento Cheese Dip…

Have you ever noticed how almost every single party dish revolves around cheese?? Dips, cheese balls, cheese logs, pinwheels….it seems almost every single holiday recipe starts with an 8 ounce package of cream cheese. Not that I’m complaining! However, since learning of my lactose intolerance (and my mom’s, and possibly my sister’s), I tend to pay more attention to these things nowadays. I try to cut down on the amount of cheese dishes I make when I host parties. Goat cheese doesn’t count, thank the Good Lord (I’m not affected by goat’s milk, just cow’s milk), so there’s ALWAYS plenty of that! :) So, this year, instead of a cheese ball (or two) and a couple of cheesy dips, I chose only one cheesy dish. This Baked Pimento Cheese Dip. Josie debuted it first, then Annie. After drooling over it on both girls’ blogs, I finally decided it was time to make it! Perfect party food, easy to make, and definitely a crowd-pleaser. What more could you ask for?

Baked Tex-Mex Pimiento Cheese

1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup greek yogurt
8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature (reduced fat is fine)
3/4 cup chopped roasted red bell pepper
1 jalapeno pepper, seeds and ribs removed, chopped finely
8 oz extra sharp cheddar, grated (about 2 cups)
8 oz Pepperjack cheese, grated
1/3 cup minced scallion (2-3 scallions)
1/3 cup minced fresh cilantro
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (more or less to taste)
salt and pepper to taste
tortilla chips, for serving

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 2-quart baking dish.

In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients for the dip, reserving 1 tablespoon of each cheese for topping.  Mix well and spoon mixture into the baking dish.
Top with the reserved cheese and bake 20-25 minutes, until hot and bubbly.  Garnish with additional cilantro, and serve with tortilla chips.

Recipe source: adapted from Pink Parsley; originally from Southern Living

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Mexican Pizzas…

This is one of those last minute, throw together meals that just happened to turn out to be a huge success (even if it doesn’t look all that appetizing). I had a can of black beans, a jar of salsa, some flour tortillas and cheese just sitting around waiting to be used, so I whipped up these super quick Mexican pizzas. They were excellent as is, but some shredded chicken or ground beef, cilantro, green onions and fresh tomatoes would have really made it awesome! I’m definitely going to play around with these again and see what yummy versions I can come up with!

Mexican Pizzas

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
4 flour tortillas
approximately 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or as much as you’d like)
1 cup salsa
salt and pepper
sour cream

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray the tortillas with butter or olive oil spray and bake for about 3-5 minutes on each side until golden and crisp.

In a small saucepan, mash the black beans with the back of a fork or a potato masher (it doesn’t have to be perfectly smooth- some lumps are just fine. In fact, I prefer it that way!). Spoon in approximately 1/4 cup of the salsa, salt and pepper and cook over medium heat until heated through.

To assemble: Spread some of the beans on a tortilla. Top with salsa and cheese. Top with a second tortilla and repeat (ending with the cheese). Repeat with the remaining two tortillas (so you’ll end up with 2 pizzas). Bake for about 5 minutes, until cheese is melted. Top with sour cream. Serves 2.

Recipe source: Sing For Your Supper original

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Cheesy Pepperoni Bread…

Fightin’ Texas Aggie Football is in full swing, so naturally we’re watching every single game on tv (the ones we don’t go to in person). I don’t know about you, but I need something yummy to snack on while I watch a football game, otherwise I get….bored. In fact, usually once the food is gone I pretty much lose interest in any sporting event. I know…I guess that makes me what Joel calls a “2 percent-er”. Oh well. A few weeks ago when we were enjoying one of the (few) particularly good Aggie games on tv, I whipped up this cheesy pepperoni bread and BOY did we gobble it down! It’s perfect football food! I used a store-bought can of bread dough, so it really saved a ton of time and came together lightening quick. We loved it dipped in marinara sauce- overall, a totally yummy snack that I’m sure I’ll be making over and over again every football season!

Cheesy Pepperoni Bread

1 can store-bought Pillsbury Italian or French bread (you could absolutely make your own dough- I was just short on time)
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
sliced pepperoni
marinara sauce for dipping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Unroll the bread dough so that it makes a large rectangle. Sprinkle generously with the mozzarella cheese, then top with desired amount of pepperoni. Carefully roll the dough jellyroll style into a loaf and place seam side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or foil. Bake 18-20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.

Recipe source: adapted from Brown Eyed Baker

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Smothered Burritos…

It’s no secret that I’m a sucker for sloppy Tex-Mex. I love pretty much anything doused in enchilada sauce covered in cheese- it’s my weakness (well, one of ‘em). The other night I was craving Mexican food pretty bad (it happens a lot lately) and I decided to whip up these burritos. They took no time to make and tasted awesome. You’ll have to excuse the fact that I had to photograph them on a paper plate…we’ve been in the middle of having some renovations done and I packed all my dishes up temporarily. If you’re in need of a quick, delicious meal, try these burritos- they won’t disappoint!

Smothered Burritos

1 pound ground beef
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 (4.5 ounce) can diced green chiles
1 (16 ounce) can refried beans
half a (10.75 ounce) can condensed tomato soup
1 (10 ounce) can enchilada sauce
burrito-sized flour tortillas, warmed
shredded cheddar cheese

Garnishes:
shredded lettuce
chopped tomatoes
shredded cheddar cheese
chopped green onions
sliced black olives
cilantro
avocado

Brown ground beef in a skillet over medium-high heat and drain.  Stir in chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Stir in the green chiles and turn off heat; keep warm. Warm the refried beans in a small skillet over low heat.

In a saucepan, combine the tomato soup and enchilada sauce. Mix well, and cook over medium heat until heated through.

Place a warmed tortilla on a plate and spread some of the refried beans into the center; sprinkle with cheese, then spoon some of the ground beef mixture onto the center. Tuck in the ends of the tortilla and carefully fold into a burrito. Spoon some of the enchilada sauce over the burrito and top with additional cheese and garnishes. Repeat with remaining tortillas. Serves 4-6

Recipe source: Adapted from allrecipes.com

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Bananas Foster Nachos…

Three words: Bananas. Foster. Nachos. You remember these?? I posted them back in October for my Project Food Blog challenge #4. Oh yeah. These are some serious nachos, y’all! Something I think you really, really need to make your Super Bowl party a success. Chocolate, caramel, buttery, brown sugary, rummy bananas…. Super Bowl food for the GODS, I tell you!

Still looking for that perfect Super Bowl dessert? Look no further, because these nachos are lightening quick to make, easy to eat (albeit a little messy), and seriously, seriously delicious! And most importantly, they’re man-friendly. These are guaranteed to please ANY man on the holiest of man days- Super Bowl Sunday. Make these and watch all your Super Bowl dessert dreams come true.

Bananas Foster Nachos

3 flour tortillas, cut into quarters
cinnamon-sugar
4 tablespoons butter, cut into chunks
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons dark rum
3 bananas, sliced
vanilla ice cream
prepared hot fudge sauce, for drizzling
prepared caramel sauce, for drizzling
chopped walnuts; optional

Preheat oven to 350. Arrange tortilla pieces in a single layer on a baking sheet and spray with butter spray. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar (as much as you want). Bake for about 10-12 minutes, until crisp.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium heat, heat butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon until butter is melted. Add the sliced bananas, gently stir for a minute or so, then add the rum. Continue to cook for about 3 or 4 minutes.

Place the cinnamon-sugar chips on a large platter and spoon over the banana mixture. Top with vanilla ice cream and drizzle with hot fudge and caramel sauce and sprinkle chopped walnuts, if desired. Serves 3-4.

Recipe source: Sing For Your Supper original

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PFB#4: Game Day Nachos, Two Ways…

Here I am again (and honestly, I just can’t believe it!), thanking you all for your continued support through Project Food Blog. I’m just blown away by your unfailing sweet, generous comments, encouragement and your votes. You are all truly wonderful readers…I am SO lucky to have you!! THANK YOU!!!

Ok, so here’s the challenge for Round 4: Sure, you can take a pretty picture. But your task here is to go above and beyond and use photography to create a step-by-step, instructional photo tutorial. It could be anything from how to bone a chicken to how to make your favorite recipe, but your photos need to guide the reader through the steps.

Honestly, at first, I thought this challenge would be a cinch. “Eh, what’s a few extra pictures?” However, it didn’t take long (about 12 seconds) for me to discover one very simple factor: step-by-step photos are HARD. For an A.D.D girl, something as simple as taking a few extra photos of the cooking process can be DAUNTING. I found myself running all over the kitchen, dining room and living room trying to get lists together, compiling my ingredients, writing down every single step of each recipe and trying to get my camera settings figured out (it takes awhile to do step-by-step photos, and your lighting is changing constantly- if you don’t change your camera settings accordingly, your pictures will absolutely start to suck). So needless to say, this has been the hardest challenge for me BY FAR. But, I barreled through and got it done- and came out with two totally awesome and delicious recipes to share with you! Yay me!!

For this challenge, I decided to do the kind of food that makes me happy (and my hubby!)- nachos. It was a very BIG game day in Texas today- the Aggies were playing a big game (who am I kidding, every game is a big game at our house!), then the Rangers with a playoff game after that. Needless to say, we needed game day food and we needed it bad. Just one kind of nacho wouldn’t be enough. I decided on two different kinds: Tequila Lime Chicken Nachos and Bananas Foster Nachos (yes, bananas foster- and let me just say….I’ve come up with a doozy.) So let’s open with recipe #1! This is how my family makes nachos- just layer on your favorite flavors. It’s great with seasoned ground beef, shredded chicken, or even meatless! I decided shredded chicken with a little tequila and lime juice would be perfect (and it was!)! Let’s get started!

You’ll need: 1 chicken breast, tortilla chips, a can of refried beans, shredded cheddar cheese, cilantro, jalapeno peppers, limes, sour cream, guacamole and salsa, salt and pepper and tequila (not pictured…oops).

Put the chicken in a small pot, cover with water and bring to a boil. Cook for about 10-15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

Remove from water and shred with two forks. Toss with 1 tablespoon tequila, the juice of one lime and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

But before you season your chicken, be sure to give your sweet doggy a little tidbit. ;)

Put your refried beans in a small skillet, stir in 1 (rounded) teaspoon of salsa and a splash of the juice from your jarred jalapenos (trust me, it’s good! Plus, it helps thin it out a little bit so it’s easier to spread). Cook the beans over medium-low heat, until heated through. Set aside.

Chop 8-10 slices of the jalapenos.

Spread out some tortilla chips on a baking sheet lined with foil and top with the beans. Just spoon some on, then gently spread it out with a small spatula.

Top with the shredded cheese and the chopped jalapenos.

Bake it in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes, until it looks all gooey and delicious, like this.

Top with the chicken then spoon on some of your salsa.

Spread the guacamole over the top, then dollop with sour cream.

Sprinkle with the chopped cilantro.

And….ENJOY!!

Game Day nachos are best enjoyed with cold Dublin Dr. Pepper…Mexican Coke would be excellent as well. ;)

These nachos are seriously GOOD (and they serve a whole boat-load of people!). They’re packed with so many different layers of flavor- the chicken is so moist and the hint of tequila really adds a lot! This is seriously, the perfect game day food! But those aren’t the star of today’s meal….these Bananas Foster Nachos are BY FAR, some of the BEST dessert food I have ever had. Seriously. An explosion of awesome in your mouth. So rich…so gooey…so amazing! I can’t wait to show them to you! Here we go- hold onto your hats…this is gonna be good.

You’ll need: flour tortillas, rum, caramel sauce (by all means, make homemade if you want to- I chose not to today), brown sugar, bananas, vanilla ice cream, chopped toasted walnuts, cinnamon/sugar, butter and hot fudge (I use this recipe).

Start by cutting 3 tortillas into quarters. Arrange on a greased baking sheet and spray with butter spray. Sprinkle with cinnamon/sugar. Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 10-12 minutes, until crisp. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, melt half a stick (4 tablespoons) butter, 2 tablespoons brown sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon.

Place three sliced bananas in the pan, gently stir, then add in 2 teaspoons rum. Cook over medium-high heat for about 3 minutes. You still want the bananas to have some texture, so be sure not to overcook them.

Arrange the tortilla wedges on a platter and drizzle with hot fudge (not too much- this dish can get RICH quick!).

Top with the bananas. Wow. This is looking good already!

Drizzle with the caramel sauce. Try not to lick the spoon.

Seriously. Don’t lick that spoon.

Sprinkle with the toasted walnuts.

And finally, top with a couple of hearty scoops of vanilla ice cream. Holy cow.

Go ahead and sprinkle with a teensy tiny bit of cinnamon.

OMIGOSH, OMIGOSH, OMIGOSH….

Take a bite…and find yourself on a short trip to “Delicious-Gooey-Yum-Yum-Land”.  A truly magical place….

Oh yeah…he’s there too…welcome, honey. Welcome.

You’re welcome.

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Easy Mexican Casserole…

Here’s another one of my mom’s recipes. She’s made this one for as long as I can remember and my family has always loved it! Mexican Casserole. It’s super easy to make and always a crowd-pleaser. If you ever need a dish for a large crowd, I’d recommend this one- you can double or triple the recipe and even make it ahead of time. My mom makes a big one and freezes the leftovers- it keeps beautifully! Perfect for potlucks, Mexican-themed dinner parties or even Sunday Night Football!

My Mom’s Mexican Casserole

1 pound lean ground beef
1 can Ranch Style beans
1 10-12 ounce bag tortilla chips, crushed
1 can Ro-tel tomatoes
1 small onion, chopped
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1 package taco seasoning
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup water
sour cream and salsa for serving

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large skillet, brown meat and drain off fat. Stir in beans, tomatoes, onion, taco seasoning, soup and water. Simmer over medium-low heat until everything is well combined and heated through.

Grease a 9×13 casserole dish. Put down a layer of crushed tortilla chips, followed by a layer of the meat/bean mixture, then half of the cheddar cheese. Repeat layers. Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes, or until bubbly.
Let sit for 5-10 minutes before serving. Top with sour cream and salsa. Enjoy!

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