Turkey Kielbasa Skillet

I am so excited to be partnering with Jennie-O to bring you this post for a healthy  school year.  Jennie-O creates quality, affordable products and I hope you will join me in supporting the brands that help Blonde Girl Cravings operate!

It’s almost that time again. Back to school time. I would be lying if I said I was looking forward to it. I love the lazy days of summer, the lack of schedules. I work outside the home, so I am not home all day with the kids like some parents are, so I can see why some are chomping at the bit for their little bundles of joy to go back to school!

Regardless if you are a work outside the home parent or not, we can all use an easy dinner idea now and again.  Some nights we don’t have time for a from scratch meal, we need a few ingredients and dinner on the table in a flash. Jennie-O has us covered! Their Turkey Kielbasa and Smoked Sausage are two of my favorite products. They are so versatile! I have been making this recipe from Taste of Home for years. It’s a way to get veggies into those kids, they will eat anything covered in cheese!

Turkey Kielbasa

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Ingredients

  • 1 pound smoked kielbasa or Polish sausage, halved and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 package (4.9 ounces) au gratin potatoes
  • 2-1/2 cups water
  • 1 package (8 ounces) frozen California-blend vegetables
  • 1 to 2 cups (4 to 8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese

Instructions

  • In a large skillet, cook sausage in oil until lightly browned; drain. Add potatoes with contents of sauce mix and water. Cover and cook over medium heat for 18-20 minutes or until the potatoes are almost tender, stirring occasionally.
  • Add vegetables; cover and cook for 8-10 minutes or until potatoes and vegetables are tender. Sprinkle with cheese. Remove from the heat; cover and let stand for 2 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Yield: 4 servings.
  • Editor's Note: The milk and butter listed on the potato package are not used in this recipe.
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    Recipe source: Taste of Home

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    Low-Carb Bacon Onion Balsamic Turkey Burger

    I am so excited to be partnering with Jennie-O to bring you this post for a healthy new year.  Jennie-O creates quality, affordable products and I hope you will join me in supporting the brands that help Blonde Girl Cravings operate!

    It’s summertime, and that means burgers! If you are like me though, you are trying to watch what you eat and are giving this low-carb thing a try. Jenni-O Seasoned Turkey Burgers are perfect for a low-carb diet! Individually wrapped so you can grab as many as you need, and done cooking in just a few minutes, they are the perfect solution for a quick dinner or lunch.

    I chose to go bun-less for this burger and serve on a bed of lettuce, but I know it would be delicious on a toasted sesame seed bun!

    This recipe sounds complicated, but the ingredient list is small and everything comes together in just minutes.

    A delicously flavorful mayo, topped with caramelized onions and bacon with balsamic makes for a burger nice enough for company, but simple enough for a weeknight. Happy eating!

     

    Low-Carb Bacon Onion Balsamic Turkey Burger

    Yield: 2 burgers

    Ingredients

    • 2 Jenni-O Turkey Burgers
    • 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
    • 2 teaspoons bacon grease
    • 2 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
    • 3 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
    • 1/4 teaspoon steak seasoning
      Mayo
    • 1/4 cup mayo
    • 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
    • 1 teaspoon grainy mustard
    • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
    • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

    Instructions

  • In a medium skillet, heat bacon grease over medium heat. Add onions, and cook until soft. Add steak seasoning, bacon sliced and balsamic. Cook until reduced.
  • For the mayo, combine all ingredients in a small bowl, mixing well to combine.
  • Fry turkey burger in a greased skillet until cooked through, or grill.
  • To assemble, top the turkey burger with half of mayo, then half of the onion mixture. Recipe serves two, but can easily be doubled.
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    Ricotta, Asparagus and Mushroom Pizza

    One of the best parts of blogging, aside from getting to taste test lots of great food, is the opportunity to work with awesome brands. Sponsored opportunities are part of what makes a blog possible, thank you for supporting the brands I love!

    Pizza night is our favorite night of the week, and I know the same goes for most families. It can get pretty expensive to order out though, and its so much fun to make and customize your own pies at home! My Easy Pizza Dough recipe is my absolute favorite crust recipe, it tastes amazing and comes together in seconds, but store-bought dough will do in a pinch.

    Thank you so much OXO for providing the tools I used to create this pizza! I have a ton of OXO tools in my kitchen, and these new products will be used often!

    • Non-Stick Pro Pizza Pan features a micro-textured pattern to improve airflow for even baking and rigidity for strength and durability.
    • Complete Grate & Slice Set includes coarse and medium grating and straight and julienne slicing surfaces. Each can be used over bowls or plates or placed on top of the lid, which doubles as a container for collecting and measuring.
    • 4″ Pizza Wheel‘s clear plastic wheel won’t damage non-stick pans, and the slick surface prevents cheese from sticking.

    This recipe is a bit different from your traditional pizza, but it’s SO tasty! The veggies on top make it feel light along with the whipped ricotta. I am embarrassed to say how many slices I ate!

    I was super impressed with the Non-Stick Pro Pizza Pan. The pizza slid right off, no sticking whatsoever. The crust baked up perfectly, and the pizza cutter is perfect for non-stick surfaces.

    Ricotta, Asparagus and Mushroom Pizza

    Ingredients

    • One recipe Easy Pizza Dough
    • 1 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
    • 4 sun-dried tomatoes in oil, chopped
    • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
    • 1 T butter
    • 1 T olive oil
    • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
    • 1 cup chopped asparagus
    • 2 T white wine (or chicken broth)
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
    • 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
    • red pepper flakes (optional)

    Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  • Prepare pizza dough per instructions. While dough is resting, add ricotta and garlic to food processor. Blend until whipped and fluffy. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add sun-dried tomato, pulse to combine.
  • In a large pan, heat oil and butter over medium high heat. Cook asparagus and mushrooms until slightly tender, add wine to pan and cook until reduced.
  • Roll out pizza dough onto floured surface. Place on pizza pan, spread with ricotta mixture. Top with mozzarella, add mushrooms and asparagus. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese evenly over top.
  • Cook pizza for 20 minutes, or until golden. Let rest 5 minutes before slicing. Garnish with red pepper flakes if desired
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    Turkey Enchilada Meatballs with Zoodles

    I am so excited to be partnering with Jennie-O to bring you this post for a healthy new year.  Jennie-O creates quality, affordable products and I hope you will join me in supporting the brands that help Blonde Girl Cravings operate!

    How’s the New Year’s diet treating you? It sure is hard to get back on the healthy eating bandwagon after a holiday season full of fattening foods and sugar, isn’t it?

    Jennie-O turkey graciously provided me with two packages of their Lean Ground Turkey Breast meat and asked me to create a recipe for a healthy new year.  Because I know most of us love a big plate of cheesy Mexican food, something along those lines seemed fitting.

    Tender turkey meatballs, smothered in homemade enchilada sauce, covered in cheese and served over zoodles? What’s not to love! I make my own enchilada sauce and encourage you to do the same because nothing else compares, but you can certainly use canned if you prefer.

    If zoodles aren’t your style, or you don’t own a spiralizer (I use this) these would also be delicious served over quinoa or brown rice. They reheat well, so I enjoyed them for lunch the next day as well!

    Check out Jennie-O’s website for a list of awesome lighter recipes for a healthy new year. And be sure to follow Jennie-O on FacebookInstagramTwitter, and Pinterest!

    Turkey Enchilada Meatballs with Zoodles

    Ingredients

    • 1 pound Jennie-O Ground Turkey Breast
    • 1/4 cup grated yellow onion
    • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
    • 1/4 cup milk
    • 1 egg
    • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
    • 1 teaspoon chili powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    • pinch red pepper flakes
    • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon dry oregano
    • 1 1/2 - 2 cups red enchilada sauce
    • 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
    • 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
    • Sliced green onions and cilantro for toppings (optional)
    • 2 large zucchini
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil (separated)
      Enchilada Sauce
    • 2 Tbsp. vegetable or canola oil
    • 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
    • 4 Tbsp. chili powder
    • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/4 tsp. cumin
    • 1/4 tsp. oregano
    • 2 cups chicken broth or stock

    Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large bowl mix together the onion, bread crumbs, egg, cilantro, milk and seasonings.
  • Add in the ground turkey and use your hands to combine everything together, making sure not to overwork the meat.
  • Use a cookie scoop or measuring spoon to form tablespoon sized meatballs and place them on a plate. (I prefer to chill the meatballs for 30 minutes, but this step is not necessary. I find it holds the meatballs together better.)
  • Heat a 12 inch cast iron skillet or non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Coat the bottom of the skillet with 1 tablespoon oil or cooking spray.
  • Place the meatballs in a single layer in the skillet and cook for approximately 3 minutes on one side, then flip them over and cook for another 3 minutes.
  • Lower the heat to medium-low then pour the enchilada sauce all over the meatballs.
  • Sprinkle the cheese over the meatballs then place in the oven and bake for 10 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and top with sliced green onions and cilantro if desired. Serve over zoodles.
  • Enchilada Sauce: Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add flour and stir together over the heat for one minute. Stir in the remaining seasonings. Then gradually add in the broth, whisking constantly to remove lumps. Reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes until thick. I prefer my sauce thicker, so I cook a little longer.
  • For Zoodles:
  • Slice ends off zucchini. Use you spiralizer to cut into "noodles." Heat medium pan on high, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Cook noodles just until slightly softened.
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    Homemade Taco Seasoning

    I absolutely adore shopping in bulk. It amazes me how much cheaper things are, and my OCD loves having a pantry full of pretty matching jars and canisters 😉

    Another bonus of shopping in bulk is that it makes it even easier to make your own spice mixes. Yes, I am aware that they sell taco seasoning in bulk, but when you create your own spice mixes you know exactly what ingredients are included, and you can adjust them to your family’s taste.

    This seasoning makes a good amount of mix. I keep it in my cupboard and use it whenever a recipe calls for taco seasoning.

    Homemade Taco Seasoning

    Ingredients

    • 1/2 cup chili powder (I used mild, but can use medium or hot)
    • 3 tablespoons cumin powder
    • 1 tablespoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon black pepper
    • 1 tablespoon dried onion flakes
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons paprika
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic powder
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons red pepper flakes (use more or less to taste)
    • 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves

    Instructions

  • Combine all the ingredients in a bowl or ziplock bag, mixing thoroughly. . Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. Use 2-3 tablespoons per pound of ground meat.
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    One-Pot Chicken Marsala Pasta

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    Holidays man. They’re killing me this year! Even though I planned ahead, it seems like the time is flying by and I don’t seem to have enough time to fit it all in. Anyone else with me?

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    How is a person supposed to impress guests with a 5 course meal and have time to do it all? They aren’t, that’s how! Bring on the one-pot meals. Limited dishes, people pleasing meals that can be adapted to your tastes.

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    This pasta is one that I would be more than happy to serve to holiday guests. I took the traditional chicken Marsala dish and made it about as easy as a meal could possibly get. Serve with extra cheese and a sprinkle of parsley on top and you have a dish that will impress any holiday guest and-dare I say- leave you a little extra time to actually enjoy the holidays?!

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    One-Pot Chicken Marsala Pasta

    Ingredients

    • 1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed
    • 1 pound mushrooms (button or cremini)
    • 1 tablespoon oil
    • 3 tablespoons butter
    • 4 cloves garlic, minced (I used roasted garlic)
    • 4 1/2 cups chicken broth
    • 1 cup Marsala wine
    • 1 lb short cut pasta of your choice
    • Salt and pepper, to taste
    • ¼ cup parmesan cheese, grated
    • ¼ cup heavy cream
    • Parsley, to garnish

    Instructions

  • In a deep saute pan, heat the oil, then melt the butter.
  • Add in the chicken. Stir often and cook until chicken is browned on each side, about 8 minutes. Add in the mushrooms and garlic, cook until mushrooms are just browned. Season with salt and pepper. Add in the wine, scraping the bottom of the pot to pull up any browned bits. Add the broth and pasta.
  • Bring to a low boil and then reduce to a simmer. Stir occasionally, until the pasta is cooked to al dente, When the pasta is cooked and the sauce has reduced, mix in the parmesan cheese and heavy cream. Stir to combine, until it is all warm. Garnish with parsley and serve, topping with additional cheese if desired.
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    Grilled Kielbasa Sandwich

    Hello winter, I have been dreading your arrival. You can hurry up and leave now please! Now that the cold days and even colder nights have arrived, I crave comfort food. This sandwich is perfect for the nights when the kids are gone and I want something filling that won’t feed and army.

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    The sandwich consists of all the things I love: cheese, sourdough, sauerkraut and kielbasa. Mmmm I am drooling just thinking about it! Of course, if you are going to open a can of kraut and cook the sausage, you might want to make more than one sandwich, but I find that both ingredients freeze well. Depending on how thick you slice the kielbasa, you may need to put a weight on the sandwich while it cooks, like a heavy skillet.

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    Grilled Kielbasa Sandwich

    Yield: 4 sandwiches

    Ingredients

    • 13 oz package kielbasa (I used turkey kielbasa)
    • 14 oz can sauerkraut
    • 1 package sliced Swiss or provolone cheese
    • 8 slices sourdough bread
    • butter

    Instructions

  • Cook kielbasa according to package instructions. While kielbasa is cooking, drain sauerkraut well.
  • Heat skillet over medium heat. Butter two slices of bread. Slice the sausage into 1/4 inch slices, and layer cheese, kielbasa and sauerkraut onto bread. Place sandwich, butter side down, into preheated pan. Cook until golden and cheese is starting to melt, then flip and cook on other side. Serve immediately.
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    Harvest Salad

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    The season of hearty, calorie laden comfort food is upon us! I do love big bowls of chowder, pumpkin bread and anything creamy and cheesy as much as the next person, but my motto is “everything in moderation.” I eat a lot of salad, and I really do love it. I ate my fill of caprese and salads topped with fresh corn  and garden tomatoes this summer, but now fall produce is getting its turn.

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    Spring mix is topped with crisp apples, tart dried cranberries, candied pecans, blue cheese and a simple balsamic vinaigrette. A perfect way to enjoy fall flavors while being both light and delicious.

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    While you could buy candied pecans, homemade are so simple to make and completely customize-able. Add a little cinnamon or even a pinch cayenne for flavor. If you want to switch it up some, replace the apples with pears and the blue cheese with goat cheese.

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    Harvest Salad

    Ingredients

    • 5 ounces of mixed gourmet/spring greens
    • 1 apple (I used Fuji), cored and chopped (to equal about 1¼ cups)
    • 1 cup candied pecans
    • ⅔ cup dried cranberries
    • 4 ounces crumbled blue cheese
      Dressing:
    • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
    • 1½ tablespoons pure maple syrup
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • ½ teaspoon smooth dijon mustard
    • a pinch (about 1/16 teaspoon) kosher salt
      Candied Pecans
    • 1 cup pecans
    • 1½ tablespoons packed brown sugar
    • 1½ teaspoons water
    • ⅛ teaspoon vanilla
    • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt

    Instructions

  • For pecans: Mix together all ingredients but the pecans. In a medium-large saucepan over medium heat, toast pecans for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. When you begin to smell them, they're done.
  • Quickly drizzle the sugar mixture into the pan, on top of the pecans, stirring the nuts as you drizzle. Stir constantly for about 15 seconds, until the pecans are thoroughly coated in the sugar mixture. Immediately remove from heat so they don't burn.
  • Spread the pecans on a piece of parchment to cool. Once cooled, you can break the nuts apart, if needed.
  • Enjoy immediately or store in an airtight container. The pecans will be slightly sticky at first, but the coating hardens further within a few hours.
  • For the salad: Place greens in a large serving bowl (or divide it among individual salad plates).
  • Sprinkle apples, pecans, cranberries, and cheese over top of greens.
  • For dressing, whisk together balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, olive oil, mustard, and salt until emulsified.
  • Dress salad just before serving.
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    Recipe Source: Two Healthy Kitchens

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    Sausage and Pumpkin Pizza

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    Anyone else feel as blue as I do when fall comes around? Something about the end of summer, school starting and the approach of winter gets we all kinds of melancholy every year.

    This year I am going to try to battle the “fall blues” by trying to actually enjoy the season. I know, who would have thought???

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    Naturally, part of enjoying fall is eating all the pumpkin things. I wanted something that isn’t a baked good, and this pizza didn’t disappoint.

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    I used my favorite pizza dough recipe, and with a short ingredient list this pizza comes together in a snap. Don’t skip the pumpkin seeds on the top, they add the perfect crunch! I know the combo seems a bit different than the pizza you are used to , but trust me this was delicious!

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    If you are looking for another fun dinner idea using pumpkin try my Pumpkin and Chicken Sausage Pasta. YUM!

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    Sausage and Pumpkin Pizza

    Ingredients

    • One recipe Fast and Easy Pizza Dough
    • 1 lb. Italian sausage, browned and drained of grease
    • 1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
    • ½ cup pumpkin puree
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
    • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
    • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
    • ½ cup pumpkin seeds (pepita)

    Instructions

  • Preheat the oven according to 450 degrees. Roll out pizza dough to desired thickness.
  • Mix together the ricotta cheese, pumpkin puree, the salt, garlic powder and oregano in a bowl.
  • Divide the mixture in half and spread equally on the pizza dough.
  • Spread the sausage, mozzarella cheese and pumpkin seeds evenly on pizza.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, or until crust is crisp and cheese is melted.
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    Mexican Chicken Taco Skillet

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    You guys. How is summer almost over and school about to start? I am sooo not ready for this! M will be in first grade this year, and a full-time student. Which means homework, and picking up/dropping off kids at two different places on weekdays.

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    I know that I am going to need to have plenty of one pot meals in my arsenal to help me get dinner on the table on crazy school nights.

    I seems that pretty much everyone loves anything “Mexican” or “taco” and this easy meal doesn’t disappoint. Just a few minutes prep and one pot(!) and dinner is cooking. This dish can be topped with any of your favorite taco toppings, so everyone in the family add what they like. Winner winner chicken dinner!

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    Mexican Chicken Taco Skillet

    Ingredients

    • 1 tbsp olive oil
    • 1/2 onion, diced
    • 1 lb. chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
    • 1 taco seasoning packet (or 3 tablespoons, if using a bulk mix)
    • 1 (14oz) can diced tomatoes
    • 1 (14oz) can corn, drained
    • 3/4 cup long grain white rice (I use Jasmine)
    • 2 cups chicken broth
    • 6 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
    • Taco Toppings:
    • sour cream, tomatoes, diced avocado, black olives, cilantro, chips etc.

    Instructions

  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Cook the onion and chicken pieces in the oil until the chicken is browned and the onion is tender, about 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the taco seasoning, diced tomatoes (undrained), mexicorn, white rice and chicken broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered for 20 minutes (or until rice is cooked through), stirring halfway.
  • Top with cheese and cover for 2 to 3 minutes or until cheese melts. Remove from heat and top with taco toppings as desired. Leftovers heat well!
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