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Cooking Up Some Family Favorites with Jumbo Stuffed Shells #recipe

[…]favorites that we love to make, and the kids know their jobs! As a parent, any meal loaded with veggies that the kids love is a win, and our Jumbo Stuffed Shells recipe is just the thing.  In the summer, it is even more fun because we hit up the garden or the farmer’s market for some really fresh vegetables to add in.  The kids {sort of} help cut up the vegetables.  Most of the time, I have all of the ingredients for this already in the cupboard from our weekly shopping trips to Walmart.  Have you ever noticed that the pasta aisle is the busiest aisle in the store? To get started, gather all of your ingredients: 1 Box Jumbo Stuffed Shells 1 Jar Classico Pasta Sauce 2 tbsp Heavy Whipping Cream 1 lb. Mozzarella Shredded  Cheese Assorted vegetables, meat, whatever you want to add  We tried this Classico #FamilyFavorites sauce this time and it was a huge hit!  Not only is it a great price, but it is also made with real meat ingredients and the Parmesan & Romano had such a great flavor.   Cook the jumbo shells according to package directions.  While they are cooking, prepare the sauce mixture.  Chop up the vegetables to the size you prefer.  I like a smoother sauce, so we use a food processor.  Mix sauce, vegetables, heavy whipping cream and 1/2 cup of mozzarella shredded cheese in a saucepan.  Stir until warm.   Drain noodles.  I prefer to spray them with cold water to cool them off so we don’t burn our fingers trying to stuff them.  Now, this is where the kids can really get involved.  Using spoons, scoop sauce mixture into each individual shell.  The kids love this part, and the result is usually a bit of a mess.  Top each shell with shredded mozzarella cheese. Cool at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until cheese is golden brown.  Scoop onto plates and dig in.  One of the things that really makes this a family favorite is that we can add whatever we want.  We could add meat, different vegetables, or whatever else sounds good that night.  This will always be a favorite meal because it gets the whole family involved in a healthy, family dinner that we can all enjoy.  Aside from that, it is a proven fact, at least in our house, that the kids are more excited for dinner when they  helped make it. Get some great money saving coupons on Classico sauce here when you buy 2 jars.   Are your kids little kitchen helpers?  What would you add to this stuffed shells […]
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Spring Cleaning Room by Room Day 3 – Kitchen

[…]blinds, light fixtures and ceilings. Spot clean any wall surfaces that have been splattered by cooking Use a wood cleaner to scour grease or cooking residue from cabinetry Clean oven thoroughly Remove knobs from the stove and clean all burners, handles, and surface.  Also clean the range hood  If food has accumulated in the dishwasher catch, dran and remove Wipe down surfaces of all appliances and clean the interior of the microwave Wash draperies Sweep and mop the floor Organize and sort through pantry, discarding expired items Remove dishes and wipe down shelves, also empty drawers and wipes them out Read the entire list here. What are your kitchen cleaning […]
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Yum yum yum

These two demolished the pomegranate while I was cooking dinner the other night.  So good for them and so yummy!   I’m pretty sure this is their new favorite food!  That is my treat after dinner and they ate it […]

#FluffyXmas Sponsor Spotlight *Source*

[…]in Connecticut.  She is a big cloth diaper and natural baby products advocate.  She believes in cooking with local, naturally produced foods and is involved in the local Farmer’s Market. Source diapers offers side snapping fitted diapers, AI2 diapers, wool and designer bibs and burp cloths.    Be sure to check out Source on Hyena Cart to see the latest and greatest she has to offer.  Or follow Source on Facebook to stay up to date.  I love this!!! Which diaper do you like best from the Hyena Cart shop?  Do you prefer fitted or AI2 diapers?  Have you ever tried wool?   Oh yeah, don’t forget to enter to win your choice of boy, girl or gender neutral diaper during Merry Fluffy Christmas! […]

Menu Plan Monday

[…]mac and cheese – super easy and fast and yummy. Spaghetti and green beans Homemade potato soup with cheese and bacon BLT’sGrilled ham and cheese and tomato soup Tator tot hotdish with bacon and cheese What are you having for dinner?  I would love to hear your ideas, we need something new.  I struggle with this however because I don’t like […]

Ham, Kale and Navy Bean Stew #Recipe

[…](16-oz) package fully cooked cubed ham 1 (32-oz) carton chicken broth GRITS: 2 cups uncooked quick-cooking grits 1 (8-oz) package shredded sharp white Cheddar cheese 2 tablespoons butter For Stew: Combine carrots, onion and potato in a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker. Top with beans, kale, tomatoes and ham; pour in broth. Cover and cook on LOW 8 hours or until vegetables are tender. Stir in salt and pepper to taste. For Grits: Cook grits according to package directions; stir in cheese and butter until blended and smooth. Serve stew over […]

Menu Plan Monday

[…]crock pot 🙂Wednesday:  Steak, potatoes and baked beansThursday:  Homemade macaroni and cheese with hamFriday:  Honey pecan pork chops and baked sweet potatoesSaturday:  Italian Soup in the crockpotSunday:  Chicken and rice hotdish – a big deal for me….I hate chicken…but that doesn’t mean my daughter has to 🙂 When I make dinner, I hope for either a meal made for two or something that freezes well.  I’m not a fan of leftovers, so I like meals where I can make it and freeze half or it for a later date.  Most nights for dinner it’s just the munchkin and I, so we don’t need a ton of food, but I want it to be somewhat healthy.  The problem is….I am a very picky eater!  I love cereal.  I could actually live off of cereal.  I would like to make oatmeal and eggs and other yummy breakfasts, but my daughter loves cereal as much as me, so mostly, that’s what we have for breakfast.  John makes eggs alot when he’s home, but the smell of them makes me sick with this pregnancy. I would love to hear your dinner ideas.  Anything you want to […]

Roasted Asparagus and Chicken Pesto Pasta

[…]and chicken pesto recipe turned out way better than the last pesto meal we had. In letting the kids help choose what we made with pesto, one chose fettuccini noodles, one chose chicken and one chose asparagus. I pretty much recreated one of my comfort food meals with all different things. The kids even helped me to prepare the meal and we had a great time making AND eating it. I’m happy to say, we found a way to love pesto and I still had leftovers for the next night. First, we gathered our ingredients. 1 jar Barilla Creamy Genovese Pesto 1 box Barilla fettuccini pasta {or whatever style noodles you prefer} 1/2 stick butter 1 bunch asparagus  3 chicken breasts  Now that we have everything we need, let’s cook.   First, cook chicken however you prefer.  We pan fry it with some salt and pepper.   While the chicken is cooking, boil water and prepare pasta according to directions.  Mix together some olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic salt and coat asparagus.  Line a baking sheet with tinfoil, and add asparagus. Roast asparagus in over at 350 for about 20 minutes. I’m pretty flexible with the time.  I throw it in when I start the chicken and pasta and take it out when the chicken and pasta is ready.   Heat up Barilla Creamy Genovese Pesto.  You can skip this step if you want, I just prefer it warm.  It will seem like very little sauce.  Do not add more.  With pesto, a little goes a long way!  I repeat – DO NOT ADD IN ANOTHER JAR! Drain pasta.  Dice chicken.  Add pasta to serving dish and slice up butter to mix in.  Then add asparagus, diced chicken and pesto sauce.  Serve warm. Save Print Roasted Asparagus and Chicken Pesto Recipe Ingredients 1 jar Barilla Creamy Genovese Pesto 1 box Barilla fettuccini pasta {or whatever pasta style you prefer} ½ stick butter 1 bunch asparagus 3 chicken breasts Instructions Cook chicken Cook pasta according to package While the chicken and pasta are cooking, cut up asparagus into small pieces. Mix olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic and coat asparagus with it. Add tinfoil to a baking sheet and roast asparagus at 350 for about 20 minutes. At this point, I also heat up the Barilla Creamy Genovese Pesto but you can skip this step if you want. Dice chicken Drain pasta and add to serving dish. Mix half stick of butter to pasta until it melts. Add in chicken and asparagus chunks. Add Barilla Creamy Genovese Pesto and mix all ingredients together. Serve warm. 3.5.3251 Now, remember when I say that I didn’t like the last pesto that I tried.  Let me tell you why.  The taste was so overpowering!  This is so much better because it has so much flavor.  Not only is the flavor amazing, but it is more of a creamy, smooth texture.  I have heard that you can use pesto on breads, as a marinade, or so much more but never would have even considered it.  The idea of using this as a dip for breads sounds fantastic and you can bet I’ll be trying that soon.   Knowing that all five kids knew that there was pesto sauce and all very much remembering our last experience, I didn’t hold out a load of hope that they would be open-minded about trying this recipe.  I hoped that the kids helped choose what to make and prepare it would help.  It was a hit.  While not all five kids loved it, they all ate it and most of them had seconds.  It was a great meal that we are happy to add into our rotation. […]

#TreatYourself with this Kids’ My Very Own Chef Set {Giveaway}

[…]reader will win a My Very Own Chef Set from Learning Resources.  My kids are having a blast cooking {play dough} with this set.  Durable, fun, and a favorite toy.  Check out just what my kids think about it here. Entry-Form   Be sure to enter to win this grand prize package, and then hop around to the other 60 or so blogs! Thanks for entering a chance to treat yourself to my giveaway, now it’s time to hop around to all the others, including the delicious Grand Prize. One lucky Winner will be treating themselves to a Year’s Supply of YumEarth Organic Candy, a Roku 3 Streaming Media Player, and 4 yummy bags of Lovely Candy Co. Superfruit Chews, Fruit Chews, Chocolate Swirl Caramels, and Chewy Original Caramels! ENTER THE GRAND PRIZE Treat yourself some more and enter on all of the participating blogs! Viva Veltoro, So Easy Being Green, the Blogging Mamas Network, and the Treat Yourself participating bloggers are not responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill prize […]
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The Best Garden Fresh Pasta Salad Recipe

[…]bath night and everyone needs to get to bed.  The kind of beautiful where you need something with real flavor real fast.  The real trick – getting all three kids to eat it.  That’s why I love having some old favorites to fall back on like Smithfield Roasted Garlic & Herb Loin Filet and Garden Fresh Pasta Salad. Our garden is a huge production every year and we are so excited to plant for this year.  There is nothing like heading to the garden to pick fresh vegetables for dinner.  This time we didn’t quite get fresh picked from the garden veggies for our pasta salad but it was almost as good.  Today we spent the entire day outside.  The kids got to play but I was busy getting ready for the garage sale when my cousin said she had to leave to go to dinner.  Ahh!  Dinner – you guys!!!!  I wasn’t really prepared for this.  Because transitions like people leaving leads to the kids suddenly realizing how hungry they are, it gets pretty crazy so I had to think – and FAST!  Then I realized I could whip up dinner and spend the time outside, not inside where they were sure to get crabby.  Let’s get to the recipe. Garden Fresh Pasta Salad Ingredients One box of tri-colored rotini pasta 1-2 cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese 1 Green Pepper 1 Cucumber Handful of Cherry Tomatoes About 50 Slices of Pepperoni 1/2 – 1 Cup Zesty Italian Dressing {I’m working on perfecting a homemade recipe, I’ll let you know when I get it right} Cook the box of pasta according to directions. While the pasta cooks, get the grill ready.  Once it’s hot, check the package of the Smithfield Roasted Garlic & Herb Loin Filet for fast cooking tips.  Your meat will be done quick, after all, we’re shooting for dinner in under 30 minutes.   While your meat and your pasta are cooking, let’s get the garden fresh veggies ready for the pasta salad.  Wash and dice the green pepper.  Peel {or don’t peel} the cucumber.  Cut into slices, then each piece into fourths.  Wash tomatoes.   Drain noodles.  Tip:  After you drain the noodles, spray them with cold water.  They don’t get hard and all lumped together.   Now let’s add it all together.  In large bowl, add noodles, veggies, cheese and dressing and mix.  If your salad is ready before the pork loin, stick it in the fridge until you are ready to eat. Cover and refrigerate leftovers. As a bonus – this dinner makes fantastic leftovers.  There wasn’t much left but John is taking a pork loin sandwich to work with a side of pasta salad.  He’s pretty happy to have something different for lunch.   Having something that all of the kids will eat isn’t always easy.  Maggie is kind of picky but LOVES pork.  That makes me love that Smithfield® offers a variety of marinated fresh pork products.  I can feel good about it because it’s 100% pork and delicious any way we cook it.  Next time you hit up Walmart, head to the meat section and grab your favorite variety of Smithfield marinated pork for a delicious and easy dinner.   How do you handle dinner on  those oops, it’s time for dinner kind of […]