Slow Cooker Chicken Alfredo Soup

My sister-in-law gave me the idea for Chicken Alfredo Soup.  She said she’d eaten it before and it was good, but not as Alfredo-y as she wished.  The recipe she’d seen used a jar of Alfredo sauce.

Slow Cooker Chicken Alfredo SoupI decided to make a homemade version that didn’t use the jar of sauce.  This soup has chicken, penne pasta, and lots of Parmesan.  It’s a delicious take on classic chicken and noodle soup.

But it isn’t as Alfredo-y as you’d imagine the soup to be.  I think that may be an impossible thing to ask of a soup, because if you thicken it and make it just like the sauce, then you don’t have soup any more.  You’ve got sauce.

I almost named it something different, like Chicken Parmesan Soup, but that’s a different dish and I already have a Chicken Parmesan Soup.  So despite the fact that the name might be a little misleading, I’m keeping it.

And this soup is definitely worth making.  It’s warm, comforting and creamy.  And there’s no pre-cooking needed.  Everything goes into the slow cooker, although the milk and pasta get held out to near the end of the cooking time.

Here’s what you’ll need to make it:   [Read more…]

Slow Cooker Chicken Parmesan Soup

Slow Cooker Chicken Parmesan Soup couldn't be easier!

 

It’s Slow Cooker Soup Friday again!  And I’ve got another new recipe for you.

This one is so easy, I really wondered if it would work.  The hands-on time for this soup has got to be under 5 minutes.  Your slow cooker really does do all the work.

I started with frozen chicken tenders.  Then added tomato juice, chicken broth, Italian seasonings and Parmesan cheese.  And at the end I decided to add some pasta too.

I served the soup with toasted cheesy bread.  Just butter the bread, add shredded Italian blend cheese to the top and pop it under the broiler for a few minutes.

Here’s what you’ll need for the soup:   [Read more…]

Popcorn Chicken Parmesan – 15 Minute Meal

Popcorn Chicken Parmesan - 15 Minute Meal

I’m a little bit proud of myself for this recipe.  I’d be willing to bet that a bag of frozen popcorn chicken has never been elevated to such a fantastic meal before.

In fact, it tastes homemade.  It tastes like you’ve spent quite a long time simmering and seasoning in the kitchen.  Certainly, longer than the 15 minutes it actually took.

So what’s the secret?  Fresh garlic cooked in olive oil.

Fresh garlic is quick to use and it makes a huge difference in how your food tastes.  There’s really no comparison between fresh and the jarred kind.  And garlic powder and fresh garlic aren’t even the same thing.

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m not above using the jarred garlic and I have garlic powder in my pantry too.  But if you want real, homemade flavor you have to use the real deal.

And if you get a great garlic press, it will be just as quick as popping the lid on the jar of garlic.  I promise!  Once I got a decent garlic press, I never bought the jarred kind again.

My press comes from Pampered Chef.  But there are other good ones on the market.  This Oxo Steel Garlic Press is $19.99  and gets good reviews on Amazon.  This Zyliss Susi 3 Garlic Press also gets good reviews and it only $14.12.  I promise you, the cost will be worth it.  I thought it was a bit too much before I bought one, but I use it all the time and the fresh garlic really is fantastic in recipes.

Okay, back to the recipe today.  You really can make this Popcorn Chicken Parmesan in the amount of time it takes to boil the pasta.

You’ll use that garlic press to crush several cloves of garlic and cook them in olive oil.  Add a handful of shredded Parmesan cheese and toss with the garlic and oil.  Then toss the frozen popcorn chicken with the garlic and cheese, before popping it in the oven to bake.

While the chicken bakes, you’ll put together a quick homemade sauce with crushed tomatoes and Italian herbs.  Add the chicken back into the sauce once it’s baked and serve it over the hot cooked pasta.

Easy!

Here’s what you’ll need:   [Read more…]

Healthier Skillet Chicken Parmesan and a chance to win $50,000 Kitchen Makeover

This is our favorite meal that I’ve created recently.  It’s easy.  It’s delicious.  It’s pasta!

And it uses Campbell’s Heart Smart Prego sauce.  Yum!

I’m not always the best at checking sodium levels and other nutrition facts to guard our heart health, so I like products that make it easy.  The Prego Heart Smart Roasted Red Pepper and Garlic sauce is a winner.

This dish tastes fantastic.  Paired with a big, fresh salad, it makes a great heart healthy dinner.

Here’s what you’ll need for the recipe, but keep reading past the recipe to find out how you can enter to win a $50,000 kitchen makeover! [Read more…]

Garlic Pepper Chicken and Broccoli with Parmesan Pasta (and Sam’s Club Card giveaway!)

Broccoli, chicken and pasta.  Any meal I make with these three favorites is going to be a hit in this house.  Luckily, they’re also key ingredients for quick, weeknight meals.

For this recipe, I wanted to keep the flavors simple, but vibrant.  Black pepper is so common, we sometimes forget that it can stand on it’s own.  I didn’t want this to be too peppery for the kids, so I went a little lighter than if it had just been Jim and I eating.

I also used  Beneforté Naturally Better Broccoli.  I had the opportunity to try this veggie a few weeks ago, when I paired it in a salad with quinoa.

Beneforté broccoli is an improved nutrition broccoli.  It’s a result of cross-pollination of commercial broccoli with a wild variety found in Italy. The taste is the same, but each serving contains 2-3 times more of the plant nutrient glucoraphanin compared to other broccoli varieties. Glucoraphanin boosts the body’s antioxidant enzyme levels and these enzymes in Beneforté help maintain the antioxidant activity of vitamins A, C and E.

It’s also really clean and fresh, right out of the bag.  That makes it perfect for munching and quick to add to a recipe.

Here’s what you’ll need to make Garlic Pepper Chicken and Broccoli with Parmesan Pasta.  (Keep reading to enter the giveaway!)   [Read more…]

Roasted Garlic, Brown Butter and Parmesan Pasta (in 15 Minutes)

You know how I love a 15 minute meal.  Sometimes that’s all I have to pull dinner together.  Such was the case the night I made this, but the inspiration for the dish had come a few months before.

When I went to Nashville for Blissdom, a group of us had dinner together the first night.  Tricia from Once a Month Mom was our ring leader and she took us downtown to Demo’s Restaurant.  I chose the spaghetti with brown butter garlic sauce.  It tasted really good, but I had an inkling that I could make it better at home.

I was right!  And it can be made in the time it takes to boil water and cook the pasta.  Here’s what you’ll need:  [Read more…]

Ingredient Spotlight: Parmesan, Romano, Asiago, Gorgonzola etc.

Today is Ingredient Spotlight: Stinky Cheese edition!

I love cheese.  Recently, I’ve encountered people who say they are embarrassed to admit they eat cheese.  I say that’s crazy.  I refuse to be embarrassed by my fondness for cheese.  Life’s too short to waste time on such a small thing.  Besides, there are many other things I could choose to be self-conscious about.  Cheese is just not worth it.

On that note, let’s enjoy these cheeses together!  [Read more…]

Italian Parmesan Herb Chicken and Potatoes in the Slow Cooker

I put this together before church one Sunday morning.  It smelled (and tasted!) fantastic when we got home.  If you have garden fresh tomatoes, they make a wonderful side dish.  A simple tossed salad would be good too.

I don’t have an ingredient picture this time.  I think I was too busy getting ready for church, cooking as fast as I could.  I forgot to snap the photo.

I did use frozen chicken tenders and skipped thawing them.  They cooked just fine.  You can also save time by estimating the herb measurements instead of measuring.

Here’s the how-to:  [Read more…]

Goat Cheese Biscuits

I have been so excited to share this recipe with you.  In early March, I visited a friend in Chicago and she took me to Table Fifty Two.  The food in that restaurant has a decidedly Southern flair.   Chef Art Smith has been a personal chef to Oprah.  Now he creates dishes such as Fried Green Tomatoes with Feta, Pancetta, Red Onion Marmalade and Kalamata Olive – Amazing!

We sat in the main room of the restaurant where Goat Cheese Biscuit dough was being poured into hot iron skillets and baked in a brick oven.  Our server brought us a serving of the biscuits to share.  Oh my!  They are light, with herbs and goat cheese inside and buttery Parmesan topping.

As my friend and I savored these biscuits and I watched the process of making them, I was pretty sure I could recreate the recipe at home.  And I was right.

These would be perfect for an Easter dinner or brunch.  And they are easy to make too.  The dough is similar to drop biscuits and it can be baked in an iron skillet, ramekins or muffins tins.   Here’s what you’ll need: [Read more…]

Angel Hair with Red Onion and Black Olives

angel hair with red onion and black olives done

This dish is full of flavor – garlic, red onion, black olives, basil, parsley and Parmesan all in white wine sauce.  It pairs up beautifully with grilled chicken, although the chicken didn’t make it into the photo.

Best of all, it is quick to fix.

Here’s what you’ll need:

[Read more…]

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