Baked Beef Chimichangas

Ok, ok you don’t have to beg me anymore, my chimichangas are finally on my blog! Ha! I created these for Lee’s Marketplace a couple of weeks ago and they were a huge hit. I have had so many friends make them already and they have loved them! I actually made these on my birthday but was happy to do it! I wanted Mexican food AND needed to make a recipe for Lee’s so it was perfect. Don’t worry, I made my family clean up the mess because it was my birthday after all!
What is a chimichanga? It’s basically a deep-fried burrito. They are traditionally fried in oil but baking them makes them just as crisp and delicious. The filling is very easy and rolling them up is a cinch! Your family will LOVE these!

Baked Beef Enchiladas

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

2 lbs ground beef
2 tablespoons minced dried onion or 1/2 cup fresh diced onion
2 tablespoons dried taco seasoning
1 (4 oz) can diced green chilies
1/2 cup taco sauce
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
12 flour tortillas, soft taco size
4 tablespoons butter, melted
Cooking spray

Toppings (optional):
sour cream, salsa, avocados, queso, olives, shredded cheese, lettuce

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat a large skillet to medium-high and cook ground beef and onions until beef is browned. Drain excess grease.
Add taco seasoning, green chilies, and taco sauce. Mix until combined and remove from heat.
Prepare large baking sheet by spraying with cooking spray. Warm tortillas in microwave for better pliability then fill each one with 1/4 cup cheese (first) then 1/4 cup meat mixture. Fold in sides then roll up tightly. Place seam side down on baking sheet.
Brush chimichangas with melted butter then bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve with toppings of choice.

Chicken Cacciatore

As many of you already know, I am now collaborating with my favorite grocery store, Lee’s Marketplace! I am doing custom recipe development for them based on what’s currently on sale. I am getting ready to make my third recipe for them today and am having so much fun. I love looking over their sale ad and coming up with a meal to make. It’s like my own little version of my favorite Food Network show, Chopped. Chicken Cacciatore is the first recipe that I came up with for Lee’s. My mom made this all the time when I was a kid and it is the dish that made me love onions and peppers. I don’t have her recipe, so I came up with my own based on memory. My mom always served it over white rice but my kids are pasta lovers, so I used mini shells for this version. Use what you like though! This is a quick, delicious weeknight dinner that tastes like you spent hours. Enjoy!

Chicken Cacciatore

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

8-10 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (excess fat trimmed)
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt, divided
Black pepper, freshly ground
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 large yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 (15 oz) cans petite diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 heaping tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
Parmesan cheese (for topping-optional)

Directions

Sprinkle both sides of thighs generously with salt and pepper. Heat a large non-stick skillet to medium-high and add 2 tablespoons of canola oil. When the pan is hot, add half of the thighs to the skillet and cook about 4 minutes per side. You want the thighs to brown really well so leave them alone and only turn after they brown. Remove thighs, set on a plate, then cook the rest of the thighs.
Turn heat down to medium then add peppers and onions to the pan. Cook about 7 minutes or until softened (add more oil if pan is too dry). Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Add diced tomatoes, sauce, paste, sugar, Italian seasoning, 1 teaspoon of salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper. Stir to combine then add thighs back into pan. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
Just before serving, add parsley. Serve over short pasta or rice. Top with parmesan if desired.

Enchiladas Verdes

Here are my favorite enchiladas that were featured in my local city magazine, North Ogden Connection (along with a few other nearby town magazines of the same publication). It’s my first time in print! So exciting!
My Enchiladas Verdes are full of flavor and are an easy weeknight dinner. They taste like you spent hours though! Split into two pans and pop one in the freezer to have on hand for busy nights or unexpected guests.

Enchiladas Verdes

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Ingredients

2 cups rotisserie chicken, shredded
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon chili powder
4 oz can diced green chilies
½ large yellow onion, diced (3/4 cup)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
28 oz can green enchilada sauce, divided
¾ cup sour cream
12 flour tortillas, soft taco sized
3 cups Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place chicken in a bowl and add garlic powder, cumin, onion powder, chili powder, and green chilies. Stir to combine and set aside.

Add olive oil to a small skillet and heat to medium. Add onions and cook 5-7 minutes or until they start to brown a little. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add onions and garlic to chicken. Add ¼ cup of enchilada sauce to the chicken mixture as well then stir to combine.

In a separate bowl, add remaining enchilada sauce and sour cream. Whisk to combine. Spray the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray. Ladle about ¾ cup of the sauce mixture into the dish and spread with the back of a spoon.

Add 1/3 cup chicken mixture to center of tortilla then sprinkle about 1 tablespoon of cheese. Roll up tightly and place seam side down in the baking dish. Repeat with the rest of the tortillas. They will be packed in tight.

Pour sauce mixture over the top being careful to leave the open ends of the tortillas exposed (so they can get crispy). Add remaining 2 cups of cheese to the top.

Bake in 375 degree oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. Garnish with cilantro. Serve with Avocado Green Salsa.

*Warm tortillas in the microwave before assembling for more pliability.

Avocado Green Salsa

Growing up in the Houston area, green salsa was a staple at every Mexican restaurant. There are many different versions, but this one reminds me of my home state the most.  It is bright, tangy, creamy and bursting with flavor! It is a must-have accompaniment to my Enchiladas Verdes!

Avocado Green Salsa

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

½ lb fresh tomatillos (4-5)
½ cup large yellow onion
4 cloves garlic
2 ripe avocados, pitted and skin removed
1 jalapeno, stem and seeds removed
½ bunch cilantro
Juice of ½ a lime
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup water

Directions

Remove husks from tomatillos and wash to remove stickiness. Cut in quarters and place in food processor or blender. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Add more water if needed to create desired consistency. Taste and add more salt if needed.
*No need to remove stems from cilantro.

Rosemary Parmesan Biscuit Pot Pie

I have been dreaming of making this for weeks and after making it just once, it is a new family favorite! My Chicken Pot Pie has been a favorite in our home for over 10 years. The first time I made it, I knew that was the end of trying out pot pie recipes. It is easy and perfect! Then last summer I created these Rosemary Parmesan Drop Biscuits that I now make ALL the time. A couple of weeks ago I thought, “What if I combine the two?” Well, here it is folks! My 16 year old food-loving son said it was one of the best things I’ve ever made and declared it the “definition of comfort food.” Success! I don’t think I could ever go back to using pie crust!

Rosemary Parmesan Biscuit Pot Pie

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Ingredients

For the biscuits:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup melted butter
1 cup whole milk
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese, divided
3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped and divided
For the chicken mixture:
1 stick plus 3 tablespoons butter (11 TB)
2/3 Cup flour
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 Cups water
1 1/3 Cup milk
4 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon Chicken Base (or 4 chicken bouillon cubes)
3-4 Cups rotisserie chicken, shredded
12 oz frozen mixed vegetables

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 400° degrees. In a medium sized bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Add ½ C melted butter and milk. Stir until just moistened. Fold in ½ cup parmesan and 2 TB rosemary. Set aside.

2. Spray a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

3. Melt butter in a large skillet with high sides or a pot. Stir in flour, garlic, and S&P until blended. Gradually stir in water, milk, and bouillon. Bring to a boil and stir for 2 minutes. Mixture will be thick. Remove from heat and stir in chicken and veggies.

4. Pour chicken mixture into prepared baking dish. Using a large scoop, drop biscuits on top of the chicken mixture. Makes about 12 large biscuits. Sprinkle remaining 2 TB of parmesan on top of biscuits.

5. Bake for 30 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown and mixture is bubbly. After removing from oven, garnish with remaining rosemary.

King Ranch Chicken

I finally got to make my favorite Tex Mex casserole on Good Things Utah today! This is the ultimate comfort food to me because I grew up eating this regularly. My mom’s version was great but had canned cream soup and not a lot of flavor. As I have become more experienced in the kitchen, I realized that it is SO easy to make a roux and my own creamy sauces. I changed the original up by making my own sauce and added some extra spices and flavor. It is amazing and easy! I don’t have a picture of it but there is a salad that we always have with King Ranch Chicken that is so yummy. It sounds a little weird but it just goes! We call it “Fritos Salad” and it is iceberg lettuce greens topped with tomatoes, black olives, canned pinto beans (rinsed and drained), Catalina dressing, and crunched up Fritos. Definitely give it a try when you make the casserole. Click here to watch my cooking segment!

King Ranch Chicken

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Ingredients

6 tablespoons butter
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 large poblano (pasilla) pepper, seeded and chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 (14.5 oz) can low-sodium chicken broth
1 (4 oz) can diced green chilies
1 (10 oz) can Mild Rotel Tomatoes, drained
1 ½ cups sour cream (light is ok)
3 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
20 corn tortillas, torn into fourths
Cooking spray

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375. Lightly spray a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
2. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and poblano, sauté 10 minutes or until softened and lightly browned. Add garlic, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. Cook 1 minute.
3. Sprinkle flour over vegetable mixture, and cook, stirring constantly, about 1 minute. Whisk in broth and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil for 2 minutes or until thickened then remove from heat. Add green chilies, Rotel tomatoes, and sour cream.
4. Stir until combined then add chicken and mix.
5. Add a single layer of tortillas (slightly overlapping) to the bottom of prepared baking dish. Top with 1/3 of chicken mixture. Add a thin layer of each of the cheeses. Repeat layers 2 more times. Add any remaining cheese to the top.
6. Cover with non-stick foil and bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake 10 more minutes or until lightly browned. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.