Entries Tagged as 'main course'

Harvest Soup


harvest soup

harvest soup

harvest soup

harvest soup

harvest soup

Soup season is finally upon us! Hooray! This year, this season has been much more bearable. The weather has surprisingly been warmer (YESSSSS!) and personally I just wish it would stay this way all year long. In my opinion, warm fall is the best kind of fall.

Fall always calls for warm, cozy soups and I’ve got one that fits the bill. This particular soup is one that just makes my heart happy. In making this soup, I did two things I hardly EVER do: 1) actually make soup and 2) use my crock pot.  I know, it’s borderline ridiculous to admit that (especially the lack of crock pot usage) but if I’m being totally honest, I forget I even have a crock pot…and that it isn’t difficult to make soup, especially one like this.  I think I have finally come aboard the crock pot train, though, and there ain’t no lookin’ back!

One reason I’m a huge fan of this soup is that it has a wide variety of  veggies that can be easily interchanged to suit personal preferences. Is there such a thing as too many vegetables in a soup? I think not. It’s surprisingly sweet, hearty, and just so satisfying. It’s a recipe I’ll definitely be making many times during fall/winter.

What’s YOUR favorite fall soup? I would love to know! :)


roughly 1 lb. of boneless, skinless chicken (or substitute for equal amount of veggies)
1 and 1/2 c. quinoa
1 can white sweet corn
1 can diced tomatoes (I bought diced tomatoes seasoned with garlic)
3 large organic carrots, chopped
1 large organic sweet potato, peeled and cubed
1/4 c. diced onion
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
6 c. broth of choice (I used vegetable)
1 white chicken chili mix (or your preferred chili mix)
salt + pepper, if needed

Chop onion, carrots, sweet potato and add to crock pot.
Add minced garlic.
Drain corn and add in along with chicken, diced tomatoes, chili seasoning, quinoa, and broth.
Stir everything together and cook on high for 3-5 hours (mine took around 3.5 hours.)
Once everything has cooked thoroughly, shred chicken and add back into soup.
Enjoy! :)


Recipe adapted from Chelsea’s Messy Apron

harvest soup

harvest soup

harvest soup

harvest soup

Cutting board – West Elm | Crock Pot – Target (on sale!) | Plaid Flannel – H&M | Wool Hat – Express

Baked Egg with Polenta and Prosciutto


Baked Egg with Polenta and Proscuitto

Baked Egg with Polenta and Prosciutto

Baked Egg with Polenta and Prosciutto

Doesn’t that name just sound all fancy? Saying it makes me feel all sophisticated and what not. I feel like I should be in some elegant dining room admiring fine china on display while a guy in a cute little tux and an accent is serving this meal to guests on a silver platter. Okay, maybe not quite that fancy, but you catch my drift. Maybe it’s the prosciutto that gives it that fancy feeling. Who knows. Maybe I’m just being a weirdo who gets over excited about experimenting with new ingredients. That’s probably a little more accurate. Either way, the recipe is doggone delicious. The combination of ingredients is out of this world. It’s so good, in fact, that you might even catch yourself singing,”Glory, glory HALLELUJAH!” after taking bite number one. It could happen… You’d actually be surprised at just how easy it is to make, which you know is the way I roll around here. You will also notice that I didn’t go too specific with measurements of ingredients because honestly, I didn’t measure much. I fit as much of each ingredient in my ramekins as I would want to eat. For example, I LOVE cheese. Therefore, I made sure I had plenty of extra room for more cheese. Hopefully that makes sense.

Now whip out your best foreign accent and get out your silver platter because this is a recipe you’re going to want to serve to folks.

sliced prepared polenta, about 1/2 in. thick (or substitute with prepared grits-either way is magnificent)
thinly sliced prosciutto
shredded cheese (I used a four cheese blend – Asiago, Fontina, Parmesan, and Provolone)
organic purple kale, shredded
sea salt
organic brown eggs
non-stick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Lightly spray ramekins with non-stick cooking spray.
Place two polenta slices in each ramekin.
Next add some kale on top.
Take one slice of prosciutto per ramekin and layer on top of the kale.
Sprinkle a generous amount of cheese.
Crack an egg on top.
Season with sea salt and pepper.
Top with more cheese.
To stabilize ramekins while cooking, place on baking sheet and cook for about 18 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly.
Let cool slightly before eating.

Baked Egg with Polenta and Prosciutto

Baked Egg with Polenta and Prosciutto

Baked Egg with Polenta an Prosciutto


Ramekins – Bobby Flay | Measuring Cups – West Elm – similar here | Cutting Board – IKEA

Kale & Pesto Flatbread


Kale & Pesto Flatbread

Kale & Pesto Flatbread

Ever had one of those days where the LAST thing you feel like doing when you get home is to cook? I definitely fall victim to that on occasion/once a week. It often would be so much easier just to go grab some takeout, put your feet up, and call it a day. The times I have fallen captive to this situation are always followed by a tummy ache, regret, and mourning over the loss of leftovers in the refrigerator. It never ends good. Next time you feel like that could be your evening, just say no to that greasy pizza. It’ll make you really fat anyway (totally just kidding. It helps me say no when I tell myself that. Whatever works, ya know?) Your new quick and easy dinner option: flatbread! It’s so pizza-like it’s not even funny. Also, this one comes grease free and you never have to leave the house. WIN.

The other night, I was unsure of what I wanted to make for supper. As I began my usual,”I forgot to meal plan. What the heck am I going to cook tonight?!”, I just decided to get creative. It’s so much fun to use what you have at home and end up with something better than you expected! I happened to have flatbread pitas that I had originally purchased for fajitas, some leftover pesto, and some frozen fire roasted corn. Put it all together and boom, new favorite recipe! And I know, I know, I’m back at that kale stuff again.Starting to see a pattern here? I mean obviously I can’t seem to deviate from recipes without it lately or so it seems. I just can’t stay away. It’s a good problem though, right? I mean, it definitely could be worse. I could be obsessively stuffing my face with white chocolate chips while no one is looking (which may or may not have happened also, but that’s neither here nor there). This time I’m using it as a flatbread topping. Oh yes, it’s just as good as it sounds. This flatbread will knock your socks off it’s so good. The corn and sauteed onions give it a slightly sweeter taste which is never a bad thing if you ask me. It’s way better than that ole greasy takeout pizza anyway. :)

Whole wheat flat bread pita
Parmesan & Romano cheese blend, shredded
Asaigo cheese, grated
1/4 of a sweet onion, chopped
1 c. fire roasted corn (I found this in the freezer section at Whole Foods)
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing onto flatbread
1/2 c. kale, chopped
basil pesto

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a skillet, add 1 tbsp. olive oil. Saute chopped onion until golden brown.
Add in frozen corn and cook until corn softens.
Brush some olive oil onto flatbread.
Brush pesto onto flatbread.
Top with cheeses.
Add sauteed onions and roasted corn.
Finish with adding kale to top.
Bake for about 8-10 minutes or until flatbread is a golden brown and kale is slightly crisp.

*side note: if you need to alter amounts of ingredients, totally go for it. I made enough for 2 pitas so if you make more, add more of the toppings!*

Kale & Pesto Flatbread

Kale & Pesto Flatbread

Kale & Pesto Flatbread


Cheese Grater Box – West Elm – similar here & here | Basting Brush – West Elm | Cutting Board - IKEA 

Quinoa & Pomegranate Squash





I really do love this time of year. It’s cool, but not yet freezing. It’s time for warm, cozy sweaters and boots. More importantly, it’s nearing one of the most exciting holidays: Thanksgiving! In my opinion, are few greater things than Thanksgiving food. It’s making my mouth water just thinking about it! Both of my grandmothers always make enough food to feed the whole town for a week. They make all of the best dishes: sweet potato casseroles, turkey and dressing, sweet potato pies, you know! This year will be the first time I’ll be adventuring into cooking a lot for this fantastic holiday (wish me luck!). As much as I do love all the incredible meals that comes along with this holiday, I know that many, like myself, don’t really want to go hog wild with all the not-so-healthy food options that will likely be under our noses. I plan on making this dish because it’s not only beautiful, it’s also healthy and guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser! I’m also going to bring this recipe out again when Christmas comes. It’s just so festive!

Feel free to alter the recipe to your liking and you can add more or less depending on the size of the crowd. Don’t write off this recipe if you can’t find/don’t like certain ingredients. For instance, say you can’t find quinoa. Grab some brown rice instead! That’s the beauty of cooking – you don’t have to stick strictly to a recipe. Incorporate what you love and make it all your own!


seeds of one pomegranate
1 c. quinoa
4 acorn squash
toasted sunflower seeds
2 c. vegetable broth + extra
salt + pepper, to taste
olive oil
sprinkle of nutmeg
fresh mint, for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Cut squash in half, lengthwise.
Scoop out all the seeds inside.
Place squash cut-side down onto a greased baking dish.
Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until squash tenders. (I found that puncturing holes in the outside of the squash and then microwaving for a couple minutes sped up the baking time.)
While squash is baking, cook your quinoa (1 c. quinoa to 2 c. broth). Cook until all the liquid is absorbed (about 20 minutes).
Once done, remove from oven. Turn the squash cut-side up.
Brush with a small amount of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Fill the inner part of the squash with vegetable broth.
Place squash back into the oven and bake for 5 minutes, or until the outer edges are a beautiful, golden color.
Fill centers of squash with quinoa.
Top with pomegranates, toasted sunflower seeds, and mint for garnish (can add more salt, pepper, or nutmeg, to taste).




Kale & Quinoa Patties


Check out this recipe video!


This recipe is my mouth’s “happy place”. It is mouth-watering, mind blowing, yummy, and healthy all wrapped up into one dish! Did I mention it’s meatless? With that kind of description, you should already be wanting to try this. It was simply just too tasty to hide it away in my recipe stash. Behold the most glorious meal I’ve yet to come across: Kale & Quinoa Patties! (que applause). Since the discovery of this recipe, I’ve made it several times for my hubby, friends, and my mother-in-law and all seem to adore it as much as I do. (Hint to all those needing brownie points with the in-laws! ;)) If you’re not one for a meatless main dish, let me challenge you to just give this recipe a try just once and see if you change your mind. I know it seems like everybody and their mama have a reason to stick kale in a recipe because it seems to be the most trendy go-to green. I was skeptical of adding a new green leafy food to my normal routine purchases, but I thought why not give it a chance. Honestly, my first time eating kale was when I made this recipe for the first time. It’s now taken the sweet spot that spinach once held in my heart. Surprisingly, kale is just so tasty all by itself.  I often steam it, lightly drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, and season with salt and pepper for a quick and easy side dish. So since we’re friends and we trust each other, go ahead and prepare yourself this goodness. You know I wouldn’t dare steer you wrong. Your mouth will thank you.


1 c. quinoa
2 c. water
4 eggs, whisked
½ c. Parmesan cheese
1  half of a large red onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/3 c. steamed kale
1 c. seasoned whole wheat breadcrumbs
1 ½ tsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. salt
pepper, to taste
½ tbsp. parsley

sliced avocado
olive oil
lemon juice
freshly ground pepper

Rinse your quinoa thoroughly. Add water and quinoa to a medium sized pan. Let the quinoa soak for about fifteen minutes or so. Bring to a boil.
Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and put the lid on the pan. It should take roughly 20 minutes.
In the meantime, steam the kale until it’s a slightly darker green color and is more tender – around 30-45 seconds.
Chop kale in smaller pieces.
Once quinoa and kale are both finished, let them cool slightly.
In a large bowl, combine quinoa, kale, eggs, garlic, onion, Parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs, salt, pepper. Mix all ingredients well and make sure the liquid is absorbed.
Form the mixture into small patties (I’ve found that smaller patties tend to stay together better while cooking than large ones).
Heat oil in a large skillet over low-medium heat.
Cook patties 4-5 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Remove from skillet and place on a cooling rack until ready to serve.
Add preferred toppings. My favorite are avocado, lemon juice, freshly ground pepper, sprinkle of parsley, and drizzled with olive oil.


Recipe adapted from Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Everyday Cookbook


Sweet Potato, Apple, & Kale Salad


Check out this recipe video!



I feel like I don’t even need to say anything about this recipe. The name completely speaks for itself here. THIS IS SO GOOD! I was recently asked to do a recipe demonstration at church for our monthly Ladies Night. The only instruction I received was,”Make sure it’s something easy, healthy, and fun!” Well let me tell you, this is all the above and then some. I mean, when you throw sweet potato, apple, and kale in a bowl together, you just can’t go wrong. They’re like the Three Musketeers of deliciousness and satisfaction. I mean, how often do you get a meal that’s both super healthy, filling, and so glorious that the “Hallelujah Chorus” plays in your head while eating it? Uh huh, that’s what I thought.


2 bunches kale
2 sweet potatoes, cut into cubes
1 Fuji apple, thinly sliced
shredded Manchego cheese
extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp. honey
1 Meyer lemon
salt + pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Toss sweet potato cubes in olive oil and bake for about 20 minutes or until potatoes are softened. At the 10 minute mark, flip the sweet potatoes to make sure they cook evenly.
Mix juice from lemon, apple cider vinegar, and honey together in a small bowl.
In a large bowl, add kale, cooked sweet potatoes, and sliced apple.
Toss dressing mix into salad to evenly coat.
Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste.
Top with shredded Manchego cheese.