Slow Cooker Taco Soup

If there is one soup we make consistently, it is this. If you know how to brown meat, open up cans, and throw it all into a slow cooker, you can handle this. It tastes fabulous and tastes just as good reheated (which is great since it makes a ton). Do yourself a favor and make it this weekend. You won't be sorry. 

printable version found here

Taco Soup
serves 8

1½ lbs. ground beef, browned 
1 onion, chopped
1-2 cups tomato juice
1 (15 oz.) can tomato sauce
2 (10¾ oz.) cans cream of potato soup
1 (10½ oz.) can beef broth
2 (15 oz.) cans kidney beans, drained
Garnish with Fritos, shredded cheese, sour cream

Combine all ingredients into a crock pot and heat on low for 6 hours.
Top with Fritos, shredded cheese, and/or sour cream
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Cocktail Hour: The Sneaky Peach

It's no lie that I enjoy a good cocktail every now and again (daily). The other day as I was trying to figure out what to drink, I started mixing a little bit of this, a little bit of that, and came up with the following cocktail which I am deeming quite delicious. I purposefully named it The Sneaky Peach as it does pack a little bit of a punch. However, it is very light and refreshing and is meant to be enjoyed at 2:00 pm or 2:00 am. I hope you love it as much as I did!

ps. "one part" equals one shot. Or a little more than a shot if you are a heavy pourer. 

The Sneaky Peach

1 Part Vodka
2 Parts Peach Citrus Fresca
Splash of Orange Juice
Fresh Peaches

1. In one martini glass, mix the first three ingredients.

2. Garnish with fresh peaches and serve chilled.


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The Best (And Softest) Valentine Cookie

I don't know about you but I am a snob when it comes to my cookies. Without sounding too sexual here, hard and stiff ones just don't do it for me. Okay with sounding totally sexual here, hard and stiff ones just don't do it for me. They have to be soft, and not just soft for like five minutes, but soft for days and days. 

The recipe below is my go to cookie recipe. Never have I made another kind because believe me, there is no point. In the spirit of Valentines Day I swapped out my regular chocolate chip cookies for some fun candy and used heart shaped cookie cutters. Regardless of how you serve these up, I can promise you that they will be one of the best cookies your man (or whomever you hand them to) has ever tasted. 

 printable version found here

The Best Valentine Cookie

Makes Around 6 Dozen Cookies 
(feel free to cut recipe in half)

4 ½ Cups Flour
2 Teaspoons Baking Soda
2 Cups Butter, Softened
1 ½ Cups Brown Sugar, Packed
½ Cup White Sugar
2 (3.4 Oz) Boxes Vanilla Instant Pudding
4 Eggs
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
4 Cups Mini M&M’s or Sixlets


1. Sift together the flour and baking soda. Sit Aside.

2. In a large bowl mix the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar together. Beat in the instant pudding until well blended. Stir in the eggs and vanilla. Blend in the flour mixture and stir until it is completely mixed. Stir in your choice of chocolate candy.

3. If you will be cutting the cookies into shapes, spread the dough flat on a ungreased 9x13 cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes. If you are not making shapes, drop cookies by the spoonfuls onto the cookie sheet and bake for the same amount of time.

4. Allow the dough to cool completely before cutting into shapes.

5. Cookies will remain soft for days (and weeks) when stored in covered containers.

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Bacon Cheeseburger Tacos

Cheeseburger Tacos

Makes 4-6 servings

Taco Meat:
1 Pound Ground Beef
4 Slices Bacon (Or About 6 Tablespoons Bacon Bits)
2 Green Onions, Chopped
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
½ Teaspoon Salt
½ Teaspoon Pepper
1 Teaspoon Liquid Smoke

Taco Sauce:
6 Tablespoons Ketchup
3 Teaspoons Mustard
½ Teaspoon Chili Powder

Taco Toppings:
Hard (or soft) Shell Tacos
Shredded Cheese
Lettuce // Onions // Tomato


1. In a medium skillet cook the bacon until slightly crisp, drain all but a half tablespoon of grease. If you prefer to use bacon bits skip this step.

2. Add in the ground beef, green onion, and chili powder. Cook until the meat is fully cooked. Add in the salt, pepper, and liquid smoke. Turn to low heat for around 10 minutes.

3. Combine all taco sauce ingredients in a bowl.

4. Fill each taco shell with the taco meat. Drizzle with the taco sauce, and then add on the shredded cheese.

5. Bake in the oven for about 5-8 minutes, or until cheese is fully melted.

6. Top with remaining toppings! Enjoy!

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Vegetarian Southwest Egg Rolls + Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce

When I say this is one of the easiest meals to make, I am not being sarcastic. Not only is it beyond simple to make, it packs a ton of flavor. If you are a fan of a little bit of spice in your food, you have come to the right place. This is the one recipe my husband asks for again and again. I love making these over the weekend and having the leftovers on hand for quick lunches to eat during the week! Good luck just eating a few... 

printable version found here

Vegetarian Southwest Egg Rolls + Honey Mustard Sauce

Makes approximately 24 Egg Rolls // Time: 25 Minutes


Egg Rolls:
2 Cups Frozen Corn
1 (15 oz) Can Black Beans
2 Cups Shredded Cheese
1 (4 oz) Can Diced Green Chiles
4 Green Onions, Chopped
1 Teaspoon Ground Cumin
½ Teaspoon Chili Powder
1 Teaspoon Salt
½ Teaspoon Pepper
¼ Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1 Package Egg Roll Wrappers (I found mine in the produce section, refrigerated)
Optional: 1 (10 oz) Package Frozen Spinach, Chopped and Thawed

½ Cup Mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons Prepared Yellow Mustard
1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
2 Tablespoons Honey
½ Tablespoon Lemon Juice


1. Mix all of the egg roll ingredients together in a large bowl (minus the egg roll wrappers).
Blend well.

2. Lay the egg roll wrappers out and fill each wrapper with ¼ cup of the filling. Fold in both sides of the wrapper and then roll the wrapper shut.

3. Place on a greased baking pan. Rub a small amount of butter on the top of each egg roll.

4. Bake at 425 for around 15 minutes, or until slightly brown.

5. Serve warm with honey mustard sauce and refrigerate any leftovers.
These can be heated up again in the microwave for about 20 seconds!

Sauce Directions:

1. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.

2. Refrigerate any remaining sauce.

3. Enjoy :)

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Mama Depandi's Bucatini Pomodoro

It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of Giuliana Rancic. Some may say I've spent a majority of my life stalking her, while others (myself) call it creating a friendship that was meant to be since birth. There is a difference. Since the opening and attending of G's restaurant, RPM Italian, I have been on the hunt for her mother's Bucatini recipe. It's kinda like the Shakespeare of food. If you aren't familiar with Shakespeare, think of it as the Justin Bieber of food, minus the drugs and horrible haircut. 

Regardless, I found the recipe and today I've got it for you. Ladies, make your man happy by cooking up some of this stuff right here. And with that other stuff you do to make him happy. Yes, that. Enjoy. 

Mama Depandi’s Bucatini Pomodoro

Makes 4-6 servings // Time: Approx. 1 Hour


28 oz Can Whole Peeled Tomatoes
2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Small Onion, Chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, Minced
1 Tablespoon Sugar
½ Teaspoon Salt
4 Basil Sprigs

¾ Pound Bucatini Pasta
2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 Garlic Cloves, Minced
Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes
1 Tablespoon Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 Tablespoon Basil, Chopped
Salt And Pepper


1. Place a strainer over a medium bowl. Pour the can of tomatoes into the strainer. Crush the tomatoes with your hands or fork, causing as much juice to release into the bowl as possible. Set aside the juice and strained tomatoes.

2. In a medium skillet, warm the olive oil. Add onion and cook for about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add in the strained tomatoes, sugar, and salt. Reduce the heat to low and stir continuously for about 15 minutes, or until sauce has thickened. Add in the reserved tomato juice and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the sauce from the heat, set aside, and add in the 4 Basil Sprigs.

3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add in the Bucatini and cook al dente according to the package. Drain the pasta.

4. While the pasta cooks, heat additional olive oil in a large skillet. Add in the garlic and red pepper flakes, stirring for around 1 minutes.

5. Remove the basil from the sauce you have sitting aside and pour the juice into the skillet. Simmer until warmed through. Add in the pasta and coat with sauce.

6. Remove from the skillet and add in Parmesan Cheese, Basil, Salt, and Pepper.

7. Garnish with additional cheese, salt, and pepper if desired! Serve warm and enjoy!