Friday, November 1, 2019

Instant Pot Shredded Beef Enchiladas

Shredded Beef Burritos and enchiladas, are some of our favorite Mexican foods. Now with our Instant Pot, it I can  make up a batch of Mexican shredded beef for an enchilada dinner in less than an hour and a half, the pressure cooker turns out a tender roast, that is easy to shred, along with some wonderful drippings ready to turn into a delicious enchilada sauce.

Shredded Beef for the Enchiladas
1 2-4 pound beef Chuck Roast.
1 Tablespoon Olive oil, Avocado oil or Bacon grease for browning.
1 medium onion chopped
2 cloves garlic crushed
2 tsps Himilayan salt
1 tsp pepper,
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder or to taste
3 cups broth or water


  1. Press the saute' button on your Instant Pot and allow the Instant Pot to heat up for 3-4 minutes.
  2. Brown the roast in the oil, turning until all sides are nicely browned.  
  3. Add onions, and brown them lightly as well.
  4. Press the "cancel" button on the Instant Pot.
  5. Add seasoning and broth/water to the pot. Lift the roast so that the broth can get under the roast.
  6. Secure the lid and check to make sure that the pressure gauge is in the correct position.
  7. Use the manual setting, and set the Instant Pot for 70 minutes on high pressure.
  8. Once the roast is done cooking, allow pressure valve to drop, and remove roast into a bowl.
  9. Using 2 forks, pull the roast until all is shredded.

Homemade Enchilada Sauce 

2 Tablespoons butter of or oil (Olive oil or Avocado oil)
4 Tablespoons Non-GMO Cornstarch
4 cups of broth Use the broth from your roast and add more water or broth to bring to 4 cups
8 ounces tomato sauce (I have often made this sauce without the tomato sauce, and find that it is delicious that way as well).
1/4 cup chili powder
1/4 cup cumin powder
2 tsp dried oregano crushed
salt and pepper to taste

  1. In a medium saucepan, heat oil on medium heat.
  2. Add cornstarch and whisk until well blended.
  3. Slowly add and whisk broth into cornstarch mixture.
  4. Add Tomato Sauce and seasonings. 
  5. Cook until bubbly and thickened.

Shredded Beef from recipe above.
1 small white onion, minced
20-25 Non- GMO Corn Tortilla's, (the amount you need may vary with each roast), lightly sauted in an oiled saute' pan. I have found that if I use "Organic Artisan Corn Tortillas", I don't even need to saute them before making the enchiladas.

2-3 cups shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
Enchilada sauce from above recipe

  1. To the shredded beef, add minced onion, and 1/2 cup of enchilada sauce.
  2. Stir until well combined.
  3. Pour about 1/2 cup enchilada sauce onto baking pan and spread evenly over the bottom.
  4. Fill the tortillas with the beef mixture,  roll them up and place them in a large casserole pan or cookie sheet.
  5. Pour Enchilada Sauce over all.
  6. Top with cheese.
  7. Bake 20 to 30 minutes.
  8. Enjoy!!!

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Friday, October 4, 2019

How to Make Sunflower Potpourri

 I love having fresh flowers in the house when I can.  Once they begin to fade and wilt, I have a hard time throwing them out.  So if thy are especially pretty flowers I will make potpourri out of them. This year, I wanted to see if sunflowers would make a good potpourri. I had a few vases in the house, with some that I had picked from the yard and lane, and I had also gotten a bunch from the grocery store. Once they began to wilt, I  hung them so that their petals would dry in the forward position. Once dry, I arranged them with some other fall flowers, leaves and seed pods, pinecones, spices etc. dripped some extra essential oils on them, and made a lovely fall potpourri.

 This bouquet of flowers came from the grocery store. They came bunched with some eucalyptus leaves and a few other flowers that I thought would be nice to add to the potpourri.

 To make potpourri with Sunflowers, dry your sunflowers by hanging them or propping them in a downward position, so the petals will fall forward. Make sure they are out of traffic zones, because the petals fall of easily until they are dried.

 Gather a variety of  flowers, leaves, pods, spices, pinecones, or what ever you have at your fingertips.  Allow flowers and leaves to dry about a week. 

 Once they are dry, trim the stems off of flowers and leaves.

 Pinecones make a nice filler and base. They add texture, and are a lovely way to hold and distribute essential oils. I begin by placing them on the bottom of my potpourri display.

 Next comes a layering of leaves and various pods and flowers.

 I like to drip and spray the layers with essential oils.

 Top with sunflowers and various spices, then add a last drip or spray of essential oils, and you are finished.

Sunflower Potpourri

  • Dried Sunflowers
  • Dried fall flowers
  • Dried Eucalyptus, Bay leaves or any other leaves 
  • Whole Spices, Pods, such as Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Clove, Anise Stars, and foraged items.
  • Pinecones
  • Essential Oils, such as Eucalyptus, Cinnamon, Clove, Rosemary, Lavendar, Orange, Tangerine or Lemon, or any combination of these.
  • Scissors
  • A bowl for display      
post signatureInstructions:
  1. Dry the Sunflowers, as well as any other flowers you would like to use,  by hanging or propping flowers in a downward position, so that the petals fall in a forward position.  You can tie the stems with twine or string and hang them from a shelf or a rack that is out of the way of household traffic.  Allow them to dry about a week.
  2. Gather all of the ingredients, and a nice bowl to display your potpourri.
  3. Layer the ingredients, beginning with the Pinecones. 
  4. Drip and spray essential oils on ingredients as you layer.
  5. End with the Sunflowers, placing them gently on top, to preserve as much of the pretty shape as possible. 
  6. Breathe and enjoy!   

 Click below for a few other Potpourri Ideas:

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Yeast Free Fresh Tomato Pizza

This yummy "Fresh Tomato" Pizza, takes only ten minutes to make and 15 minutes to bake. It is yeast free, and low in calories, perfect for a healthy last minute lunch or dinner and a wonderful way to enjoy those garden fresh tomatoes before they are gone.  We have enjoyed it with just tomatoes, or loaded up with roasted green chilies, peppers, onions and mushrooms, either way yum!

  • 2 cups Self Rising Flour (I use King Arthur's)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup Non-Fat Yogurt
  • 2 tsp Olive Oil
  • Fresh Tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 cup Mozzarella Cheese
  • Garlic Salt
  • 6-8 fresh Basil Leaves, sliced or minced
  • Roasted Chilies, Sliced Onions, Mushrooms (optional)
  • Parmesan Cheese to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together self rising flour and salt.
  3. Add yogurt until well combined (if dough seems too dry or crumbly, you can add more yogurt if needed).
  4. With floured hands, pat dough into a ball and then place onto a cookie sheet or pizza pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
  5. Pat or roll out the crust onto the pizza pan, 
  6. Drizzle and spread 1 teaspoon of olive oil over dough, and sprinkle with garlic salt.
  7. Cover dough with sliced tomatoes.
  8. Drizzle remaining olive oil over tomatoes, and sprinkle all with garlic salt.
  9. Top with cheese, and bake 14 - 16 minutes, or until dough and cheese are lightly golden brown.
  10. Top with Basil and a dash of Parmesan cheese.
  11. Enjoy.
Makes 8 Large slices or 16 small
175 calories per large slice

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Friday, September 13, 2019

Creamy Confetti Corn with Bacon

I've been craving this recipe for the last few weeks, as the corn has been coming into season, and finally got a chance to make it today. It is so delicious, you're going to want to add this side dish to your next family meal. You can use fresh corn right off the cobb, or frozen corn. I buy Organic Non-GMO, and use fresh peppers and onions from the garden . I love the combination of textures, flavors and colors in this wonderful creamy, slightly crunchy corn dish.

6 slices Bacon (I use uncured)
4 cups, fresh or 16 ounces frozen Corn
3/4 cup diced Red Onion
3/4 cup diced Red and/or Green Bell Pepper (or if you like things spicy, add some Serranos or Jalepenos)
1 tsp Pepper
1 tsp Salt
1 (4-ounce) package Neufchatel Cream Cheese,
1/3 cup Milk (Almond milk is fine for less calories)
2 Greens Onion, minced

  1. Cook bacon until crisp.
  2.  Remove, drain and cool on paper towel; once cool, chop or crumble and set to the side.
  3. Drain bacon grease, leaving one tablespoon in skillet.
  4. Add corn, red onion, and peppers to skillet, and saute gently on low heat for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add Neufchatel cheese and milk and stir together until cream cheese is melted and nicely distributed throughout.
  6. Add all but 2 tablespoons of bacon bits, and half of the green onions to corn mixture.
  7. Stir together, and pour into a serving bowl.
  8. Top with remaining bacon bits and green onions.
  9. Serve and enjoy.
Serves 8
142 Calories per serving


Thursday, August 22, 2019

One Pot Beef Stroganoff

Don't you love meals that can be made in one pot, and take less than 30 minutes to throw together? Simple, to make, with so little clean up... a perfect meal for a busy day when everyone is tired, but dinner still needs to be made.  I think that is probably why "Hamburger Helper" was so popular when in he 70's and 80's.  This delicious Beef Stroganoff is one of those recipes, and it is also a "Skinny Recipe" that is easy on the waist line,  but so delicious, and satisfying, that your whole family will love it.

  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 of a large onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, trimmed and finely minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 -8 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 lb extra lean ground beef or ground turkey
  • 1 16 ounce package bow tie or Rotini Pasta
  • 32 oz organic beef or mushroom broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 ounces light cream cheese
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 Tablespoons "better than bullion beef base"
  • 3/4 cup nonfat Greek Yogurt
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 green onions, minced or chopped


  1. Place butter in a medium stock pot and turn to medium heat. 
  2. Add onions, garlic and celery and saute until tender.  
  3. Add mushrooms and saute until softened. 
  4. Add ground beef or turkey, stir into vegetables and brown lightly. 
  5. Add broth, water, cream cheese, onion powder and beef base. 
  6. Stir well, add pasta and cover. 
  7. Bring to boil and simmer 10 - 12 minutes, or until pasta is "al dente" done. 
  8. Remove from heat and add Greek Yogurt. 
  9. Stir until well distributed. 
  10. Add salt and pepper to taste. 
  11. Garnish with minced or chopped green onion.
  12.  Enjoy!

Makes about 13 "1 cup" servings
223 calories per serving

Friday, August 16, 2019

Summer Zucchini Pie

What is creamy, cheesy, crunchy, healthy and comfort foody, made with fresh Zucchini, basil, garlic and onion? The answer is, this delicious Summer Zucchini Pie.

 Its that time of year again; Zucchini is coming out of the garden in abundance, and I am trying to use it up as quickly as the garden spits it out.  I always like to have all of my garden vegetable recipes at hand this time of year, to stay on top of all of those wonderful, fresh, veggies.

This is a recipe that I have made over and over this summer; it is so delicious, and easy to throw together, and works nicely as a main dish or side dish. It is also low in calorie, but a very satisfying  comfort food;  You can eat healthy, but have your comfort food and eat it too right?

Slice the Zucchini moderately thin.

Layer it in the bottom of a prepared dish.

Top with thinly sliced onion.

Sprinkle with half of the cheese.

Repeat all three layers.

Pour egg mixture evenly over the top.

Sprinkle with bread crumbs.

Drizzle with butter.

Bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes.

Cool 5- 10 minutes and slice into servings.

Serves 8


Approximately 188 calories per slice.

Summer Zucchini Pie
2 large Zucchini sliced thin
1 large onion sliced thin
2-3 cloves garlic 
2 cups grated cheese (Mozerella, Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Parmesan or any combination of these I've been using Trader Jo's light cheeses, to keep the calories low)
3 eggs 
3/4 cup milk of choice (I use almond milk)
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 - 2 cups fresh bread crumbs
2 tablespoons butter
6-7 Fresh Basil leaves or 1 tsp dried
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Prepare a 9 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  3. Slice Zucchini and onion and set to the side.
  4. Place eggs, milk, garlic, basil, salt and pepper into a blender and blend together, then set to the side.
  5. Layer as follows: Zucchini, onion, cheese, Zucchini, onion cheese.
  6. Pour egg mixture evenly over all.
  7. Sprinkle breadcrumbs evenly over top.
  8. Drizzle with butter. 
  9. Bake at 350 for 50 -60 minutes, until top is lightly browned and pie is set. 
  10. Slice, serve and enjoy
 Serves 8
Approx 188 calories per slice.