Join the Countertop Cooking Challenge 2018!

Get your slow cooker ready!  Pull that new Instant Pot that you aren’t sure what to do with out of the box, because we’re going to be using both of these appliances this month!

I’m really excited to partner with Laurie from Passionate Penny Pincher to bring you Countertop Cooking Challenge.  Laurie and I are both going to be cooking from Eat at Home Meal Plans (you don’t have to be a member to follow along though).  The Countertop Cooking Challenge officially starts Feb. 26!

She’s going to be focusing on the slow cooker recipes and I’m going to be cooking Instant Pot recipes.  You can catch both of us cooking on Facebook Live videos.  Laurie will be on the Passionate Penny Pincher page and I’ll be on the Eat at Home page.  Be sure to go like both of our pages.

All of the Eat at Home Meal Plans feature some Instant Pot and Slow Cooker recipes.   You’ll find both types of recipes in Traditional, Wholesome Traditional, No Flour/No Sugar and Slow Cooker plans.

But even if you aren’t a meal plan member, you’ll want to join us in this challenge.  We’re going to making dinner simple and delicious using both the slow cooker and Instant Pot.  You’ll get new recipes and cooking tips and have your dinner done too!  (If you are interested in becoming a member, you can use the code COUNTERTOP at check out to get a discounted price.)

You’ll also want to sign up for the Countertop Cooking Challenge emails.  I’ll be sending out links to the FB live videos and other tips for you through email.

Sign Up Here:





I’m so excited to have you join us for this Countertop Cooking Challenge!

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Make Your Own Pizza – It’s easier than you think!

Ever wished that making pizza was as easy as picking it up from your local pizza joint? Well, it takes a little more forethought but it really is much easier than you might have imagined. I’m excited to talk about one of my favorite family foods and tell you some of the tricks I’ve learned along the way while making lots of yummy pizzas for my family’s pizza night each week over the years.

First, let’s just talk about pizza for a minute. It’s an all-American nod to a classic (though not quite the same) Italian dish. And one of my favorite things about it is that there are a million ways to make it, so it’s a great way to make everyone happy. I love that you can go savory, and never run out of different ways to top it. And you can go sweet, and make a treat that will be a massive hit with everyone too.

To me, pizza night is one of the easiest, most fun nights of the week. But to make pizza night easy, you do need to plan ahead a little. I make up my dough in batches. I freeze portions of it so I can pop it out an hour or so before dinner and let it thaw on the counter. That saves me so much time since I don’t have to make the dough from scratch every time we want pizza. Plus the extra rise helps give the dough an even better texture!

I like to make my own sauce, but you don’t have to. And you can go as elaborate or as easy as you want on the toppings. One of my favorites is the chicken alfredo pizza on the blog. It’s delicious and easy, and it is a great option if you don’t like or want all tomato sauces on your pizzas, too.

 

Tricks and Tips for Making Your Own Pizza

Some of Our Favorite Pizzas

  1. Need a gluten-free option for pizza night? We love this fun BLT Pizza!
  2. This homemade alfredo sauce is SO easy to make and it’s delicious on this alfredo chicken pizza. This is a huge favorite of mine!
  3. These mini deep dish pizzas are a fun take on personal pizzas. Lots of cheese!
  4. Here’s another fun take on chicken pizza. Good way to get some spinach in. You’ll really like Chicken Florentine Pizza!
  5. Don’t have time for a crust? French bread makes a fun, crispy alternative in this French Bread Pizza.
  6. Here’s a tex-mex way to make some pizza. Try out Cornbread Pizza!
  7. Who else loves pesto? I love this  Pesto Tomato Pizza!
  8. Need a little heat? Try this Spicy Garlic Chicken Pizza!
  9. This is not a pizza. But it’s another fun way to enjoy those pizza-y, cheesy flavors we love in pizza. You’ll love this Sausage Mozzarella Calzones
  10. Does anyone lovee a deep dish Chicago style pizza? This pizza pot pie was SO good!

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FREE Pressure Cooker School

I’m sure by now you’ve all heard about the Instant Pot, aka. electric pressure cooker. I’ve heard from several of you who recently received one as a gift and are feeling a little intimidated by it. That’s exactly why we’re offering Free Pressure Cooker School!

Free Pressure Cooker School

We kicked it off by covering: [Read more…]

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Instant Pot Ham and Bean Soup

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of College Inn®. The opinions and text are all mine.

I love Ham and Bean Soup, but it typically takes quite a few hours to make.  Enter the Instant Pot or any brand of digital pressure cooker.  This appliance makes it possible to have fantastic Ham and Bean Soup in less than one hour!

And this recipe is healthy too. Beans, ham, vegetables and a generous portion of College Inn® make this recipe simple and nutritious.

If you haven’t tried using your Instant Pot yet, this is an easy recipe to test it out.  Everything gets added to the pot at the same time.  The lid is sealed and the cook time set, then you can work on other things – maybe fix a big salad and some cornbread – while the soup cooks.

Once the timer goes off, the soup is ready to serve.  It doesn’t get any easier than this.  You don’t even need to soak the beans before cooking.

Want more delicious instant pot dinners? Sign up to download the FREE menu and color-coded grocery list so you can enjoy one of these great instant pot meals tonight.

Here’s what you’ll need to make Instant Pot Ham and Bean Soup:

Do be sure to rinse and pick through the Great Northern beans before adding them to the pot. Dried beans often of small stones or other debris that needs removed before cooking.

There’s just a small amount of chopping for this recipe, but it shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes and probably less than that.

If you decide to try it, share your results using #CollegeInnBroth!

This is truly a recipe that anyone can make!

Instant Pot Ham and Bean Soup

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Serves: 6-8 servings

Ingredients
  • 1 pound dried great northern beans
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 4-5 small carrots or 2-3 large, chopped
  • 1 pound ham cubes
  • 6 cups or 48 oz. College Inn® Chicken Broth
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
Instructions
  1. Rinse and pick through the dried beans to remove any small rocks or debris
  2. Place rinsed beans, onion, garlic, celery, carrots and ham in Instant Pot.
  3. Pour College Inn® Chicken Broth over all the ingredients in the pot. Stir in the salt.
  4. Seal lid and set cook time for 35 minutes.
  5. Do a quick pressure release.
  6. Serve in bowls.

EasyRecipe

See also: The 10 Best Instant Pot Accessories

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The Simple Recipes You Need to Master for Easy Dinners + Free Download!

I’ve got a new video for you and a free download too!  In the video I share about four types of meals you need to learn if you want to have simple, easy weeknight dinners.

And I’ve given you recipes for 8 dinners that fit those categories!

I think you’re going to love these recipes and I promise if you use these types of meals, dinner will be a cinch!

To see the video go to this page and enter your email address.  Once you do that, you’ll be taken to a page with links to the first and second videos in this series, along with the downloads for each.

And be on the lookout tomorrow for a GREAT deal!

Watch the Video and Get Your Copy of Let’s Eat! by clicking here

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Free Download! 85 Easy No Sugar/No Flour Snacks!

I’ve got a lot of good stuff for you in the next few days, including this free download of 85 Easy No Flour/No Sugar Snacks!

We’ve put together simple ideas to solve the question of what snacks you can eat and still be healthy.  I think you’ll love these ideas.

I’ve also got a new video series for you and the first video released today.  I cover how to overcome the dread of cooking, cleanup and complaints from family members.  These were some of the most common things people say they dread about weeknight dinners.  If you deal with these too, be sure to check out the video series.

You can sign up for the free download of 85 No Flour/No Sugar Snacks and the video series by clicking here.

Sign up here!

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Savory Chicken and Cranberry Stuffed Acorn Squash

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of College Inn®. The opinions and text are all mine.

There’s something about stuffed squash that looks like you’ve pulled out all the stops in making dinner.

But really, it’s so easy!  If you can cut a squash in half, you can do this!

This recipe for stuffed acorn squash is perfect for fall.  The colors of the squash look so pretty on the table at this time of year and the cranberries are seasonal too.  I served this on a Tuesday night and my daughter and husband loved it!

College Inn® Chicken Broth adds rich, savory flavor to complement the sweetness of the squash and cranberries.  I used chicken that I cooked in a skillet, but if you have leftover turkey after Thanksgiving this would be a wonderful way to serve it.

Here’s what you’ll need to make this dish. It’s so simple with only six ingredients, plus olive oil, salt and pepper.   If you decide to try out this recipe, share your photos on social media using
#CollegeInnBroth! [Read more…]

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FREE Instant Pot Meal Plan + Instant Pot Deals you won’t want to miss

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday. I am so grateful for each of you and your commitment to building stronger families by gathering around your dinner table!

You all know how much I love my electric pressure cookers and let me tell you, they were both vital to yesterday’s calm at our house. We’ve gathered a few resources for Instant Pot Deals you won’t want to miss.

FREE Download Instant Pot Meal Plan and Grocery List!

We’ve put together this free Instant Pot Dinners Meal Plan  for you!

Click here to download your one week of Instant Pot Dinners, complete with a color-coded grocery list just like our weekly meal plans.

Instant Pot Deals you won’t want to miss!

Instant Pot deals you won't want to miss

While you’re at it, check out my affiliate link for the 6-quart Instant Pot Black Friday Deal on Amazon today. They also have this 8-quart Instant Pot Black Friday Deal with a yogurt function too. You’ll want to snag one right away as Amazon prices can change quickly and we’re not really sure how long this sale will last.

I’ve also packed lots of information and a few tips about my Top 10 Instant Pot Accessories Picks + 3 extras post that you might find helpful. Especially if you’ve used your Instapot and are seeing all the possibilities with it!

Free Eat at Home Instant Pot Resources

If you still have a few questions about the Instant Pot then you can watch the Facebook Live that I did on Wednesday for all the basics and answers to some of the most common questions.

You can also find my honest review of the Instant Pot vs. the Cuisinart Pressure Cookers. And then there’s this entire series on Cooking Meats and Proteins for the Freezer in your Instant Pot.

Do you have an Instant Pot or is it on your wish list this year? We would love to hear about your favorite way to use yours in the comments below!

 

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Chicken Pot Pie Soup with Pie Crust Croutons

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of College Inn®. The opinions and text are all mine.

I have to tell you a little story.  I’ve been working so hard on my cookbook and have created so many recipes that I really wondered if I’d ever be able to create another one.

What if I’d poured everything I had into that book and there was nothing left to work with?

I turned the manuscript in to my editor and then planned to take a big break.  That’s not how things went though, because the next weekend I wanted to create a Chicken Pot Pie Soup recipe and partnered with College Inn broth to do so.

This Chicken Pot Pie Soup is a comfort in many ways.  For me, it’s great to know that I’m still able to be creative in the kitchen, even after the intense cookbook work.

This soup has all the warm, hearty ingredients you expect in a chicken soup, especially as the weather cools down.  It starts with a great chicken broth and I like to use College Inn – It’s got a savory taste that helps elevate any dish to make it delicious. Then the soup is topped with Pie Crust Croutons.

Chicken Pot Pie Soup + Pie Crust Croutons is amazing!  It’s the perfect comfort food.

Here’s what you’ll need to make a big pot for your family (and you will want to get to your kitchen as soon as you can to stir up a batch!).

[Read more…]

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18 Sweet Fall Breakfasts

I’m curious, do you find it easier to swing your feet out of bed when a cool crisp day awaits, or does it just make you want to curl up under the covers for a few more minutes? If you’re like me, then it feels like an invitation to start fresh and new with a crisp clean slate. And there’s no better way to start than with a delicious and satisfying breakfast, especially one of these 18 Sweet Fall Breakfasts! From there you can move on to enjoy the beauty of the season, complete with a classic autumn dinner, some seasonal side dishes and all wrapped up with a scrumptious fall dessert.

18 Sweet Fall Breakfasts

Pancakes & Baked Goods

There are so many baked goods options for a delicious breakfast. You can always add a breakfast meat, or eggs or yogurt if you want to up your protein intake to get the day started. And most of these already take full advantage of seasonal fruits.

When you take a whole wheat pancake and dress it up for fall you end up with Whole Wheat Apple Pancakes. And just so you know, we eat these for dinner with a meat and fruit, probably more than we would like to admit.

These Gingerbread Pancakes with Sweet Cider Syrup are sweetened with molasses and spiced with ginger, cinnamon and allspice.  But it’s the Sweet Cider Syrup that steals the show. Try them and you’ll see.

If you’re not as crazy about sweets, then these Cinnamon Chip Scones are for you because they’re not overly sweet. You can always add a little more sugar to your coffee or tea if you must!

1-Minute Brown Sugar and Cinnamon Apples literally take one minute to cook in the microwave. Add some yogurt and your favorite granola and you’ve hit most of the food groups first thing in the morning.

Pear Tart with Cream Cheese Icing takes a roll of crescent rolls to a whole new level. It makes a sweet breakfast treat, but it would make a nice little dessert too!

These Pumpkin Pecan Sticky Rolls are so easy because they begin with frozen dinner roll dough. Simply mix up a few ingredients to pour over the top and you have a company-worthy fall breakfast!

 Muffins

Muffins are such a quick way to enjoy baked goods. If your weekday mornings are a bit hectic, try mixing up the dry ingredients the night before and set your muffin tin and a mixing bowl on the counter and you’re ready to go. Mix them up and let them bake while you continue getting ready for your day. You may even sneak a few extra minutes to linger over your favorite coffee or tea.

Apple Butter just smells like home to me! You can whip up a batch in your slow cooker in no time at all using this Easy Apple Butter Recipe. Then you can whip up these Apple Butter Muffins too.

If you’ve never made baked goods with Butternut Squash, then this Butternut Squash Muffin recipe is perfect for you. It’s milder and creamier than it’s pumpkin counterpart and really should not be overlooked as a tasty fall treat!

These Cinnamon Streusel Muffins are super easy and the combination of warm cinnamon with some butter spread on top will be all the encouragement your reluctant morning people need to throw off the covers and greet the day.

Gingerbread Muffins pair wonderfully with orange marmalade and the combination tastes like fall. Go ahead and make a double batch because these are a wonderful mid-morning snack, or mid-afternoon, or anytime really!

Cranberry Muffins with Orange Marmalade Glaze are sweet, but the tart taste of the cranberries along with the citrus make them taste bright, like sunshine sparkling over a pile of crunchy leaves on a crisp fall morning.

Pumpkin and Pumpkin Spice and Pumpkin Butter makes these Pumpkin Butter Muffins amazingly moist and flavorful. And technically pumpkin is in the vegetable family, so it’s like having veggies for breakfast, right?

Spiced Chai Tea has such a wonderful flavor profile that you just know you’ll love these Spiced Chai Tea Muffin. They’re kind of like a coffee cake but packed with even more flavor!

 

Oatmeal

Do you remember hearing stories about your parents or grandparents having oatmeal for breakfast? Every. Single. Day? It’s a pretty healthy, hearty way to start the day, but I’m thinking theirs may not have been quite as tasty as these Autumn versions. And all of them are made in a slow cooker.

You could call this Apple Oatmeal “Apple Pie Oatmeal”. Go ahead and make up an entire batch of it and just heat it up the next day with a little milk for another breakfast, if it lasts that long that is!

The citrus flavor with the sweet-tart cranberries in Cranberry Orange Oatmeal is a great way to start the day. It just sounds like fall and holidays, doesn’t it?!

This Gingerbread Oatmeal is a flavorful combination of cinnamon, brown sugar, ginger, cloves and vanilla. Be prepared for lots of thank you texts, comments, hugs and things of that sort.

A hot bowl of oatmeal is a comfort food for fall and winter both, especially if the ground is covered in leaves or snow. I can’t think of anything more comforting than waking up to a world wrapped in the colors of fall or the soft white of winter and having a bowl of this Hot Spiced Apple Cider Oatmeal to go with the view.

Forget the Pumpkin Spice Latte, and try this Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal for some wonderful fall flavor. And then you can grab your latte on the way home from the day later if you must.

Which ones are your favorite fall breakfasts?

So, what’s your breakfast preference? Do you even have it? If not, these ideas are a perfect place to start! Which one will you start with?

 

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