Seasonal, Small Bites

Sausage Stuffing Bites

Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, we all are face to face with the Leftover Problem. Well have no fear, I have the perfect solution for all the leftover stuffing. These Sausage Stuffing Bites are perfect to use leftover stuffing to make! They can be used for an appetizer at your Friendsgiving celebration. You can also make them ahead of time and keep them in the fridge until you’re ready to bake and serve them. They are perfect for parties and family gatherings during the holidays.

Ingredients

Sausage Stuffing Bites

  • 2 boxes Savory Herbs Stuffing or 2 cups leftover stuffing
  • ½ pound of hot Italian sausage
  • ½ pound of mild Italian sausage
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ½ cup of mozzarella cheese or shredded cheese cheddar
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries, minced
  • 2 beaten eggs

Gravy Dipping Sauce

  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour 
  • ¾ stick of butter
  • 3 to 4 cups chicken broth 
  • 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt 
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, more to taste 

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. 

Brown the sausage over medium-high heat until no longer pink. Add the garlic and cranberries, mix and cook for 5 minutes. 

While the sausage is cooking, cook the stuffing.  

Once sausage and stuffing is cooked, combine all ingredients into a mixing bowl and mix with your hands. Do not ocean out the sausage pan, we will use the drippings for the gravy. 

Using a cookie scoop, (or hands) scoop the sausage balls onto a baking pan lined with parchment paper. 

Bake for 20-25 minutes, till they are browned on top.

While sausage stuffing bites are cooking, make the gravy dipping sauce. 

Over medium heat, melt the butter. Sprinkle on half the flour and stir so that the butter soaks it all up, then add more little by little. Stir it around and cook it for another minute or so, then pour in the broth, stirring constantly.

Cook the gravy, stirring frequently, until it thickens. (This may take a good 10 to 12 minutes.) Sprinkle in the salt and pepper and continue cooking until very thick and luscious. If it gets too thick too soon, just splash in another 1/2 cup of broth or more if needed. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

Place dipping sauce in a serving bowl and serve with Sausage Stuffing Bites

Recipes, Seasonal, Sunday dinner

Stuffed Acorn Squash

Happy Fall Ya’ll! We may not have the fall weather here in Florida but we can create those delicious fall flavors! 

Acorn squash gets roasted to perfection and tossed with chicken sausage, kale, cranberries, pecans and melty goat cheese for the perfect salty and sweet combo.

Ingredients

Acorn squash

  • 2 acorn squash medium
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon salt or more
  • black pepper freshly ground

Squash filling

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion small, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 pint mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 10 oz chicken sausage, crumbled
  • 4 oz kale, chopped 
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup pecans, chopped
  • 4 oz goat cheese 

Instructions 

Roast acorn squash

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Cut off the top and the bottom of each acorn squash to create a flat base. Make sure not to cut too deep into the base of the squash. 

Slice each squash in half. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and fleshy strands tangled with the seeds.

Place acorn squash cut sides up on a baking sheet. 

Drizzle the cut sides of acorn squashes with olive oil and rub the oil into the squash. Season generously with salt and pepper. 

Turn the squash over, and place it cut sides down on a baking sheet.

Roast in the preheated oven at 400 F for 30 minutes.

Make squash filling

Make the sausage filling while the squash is being roasted in the oven.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil, add diced onion and garlic, and cook it on medium-high heat for about 2 minutes until cooked and a bit charred.

Add the chopped mushrooms, and saute until soft. 

Add crumbled sausage and rosemary, cook on medium heat until the sausage is completely cooked through.

Add fresh kale and cook for another 5 minutes on medium heat until the kale wilts.

Add dried cranberries and chopped pecans and mix everything.

Season with salt and pepper. 

How to stuff acorn squash

By this time, you have roasted the acorn squash for 30 minutes. Remove them from the oven and turn cooked squash halves cut sides up.

Divide the sausage filling among the 4 halves and stuff the squash until the mixture is leveled or a little bit higher. Sprinkle each half with goat cheese. 

Bake the stuffed acorn squash in the preheated oven at 350 F for 10 or 20 more minutes until the sausage mixture is heated through.

On the Side, Recipes

Country Squash Casserole

This recipe reminds me of visiting the Dillards House in Georgia. My family has a cabin in Franklin, North Carolina; about twenty minutes from the Dillard House. It is one of my favorite places to eat whenever I visit. Think family style with generous portions of the best homemade Southern dishes you’ve ever had. Every time we would go in the summer they would serve up this buttery summer squash casserole. 

This country squash casserole is great for a summer side dish, a cookout, a family dinner, and pretty much any other occasion where you’re feeding a crowd. Another major plus is that it requires just 5 minutes of prep time and only a handful of ingredients.

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 small yellow squash, thinly sliced
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 1 stick of butter, divided
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup water, or more as needed
  • 35 buttery round crackers, crushed
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese 
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 

Melkt one tablespoon of butter on a large skillet over medium heat. Saute the onion and garlic until fragrant. 

Place squash in the skillet and stir to mix with onion and garlic. Pour in water. Cover, and cook until squash is tender, about 5 minutes. Drain well, and place in a large bowl.

Mix cracker crumbs and cheese together in a medium bowl. Stir half of the cracker mixture into the cooked squash and onions.

Mix eggs and milk together in a small bowl, then add to the squash mixture.

Stir in 4 tablespoons of melted butter, and season with salt and pepper. Spread into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with the remaining cracker mixture, and dot with the remaining butter.

Bake in the preheated oven until lightly browned, and starting to bubble and the topping is lightly golden brown in color, about 35 minutes. You can also broil on low for the last few minutes to finish browning the panko topping.

Remove from the oven and serve immediately. 

Recipes, Sunday dinner

Truffle Salisbury Steak

Tender seasoned beef patties smothered in mushrooms & shallots baked in a rich a decadent gravy.

Salisbury steak is the ultimate comfort food. Here’s a twist on an oldie… In this recipe I made some slight changes to dress it up!

The patties are made with lean beef because it has a lot of flavor but it’s not overly greasy. The meat is mixed with truffle oil, barbeque sauce, Worcestershire sauce, cheese and seasonings, then formed into oval shaped “steaks”.

The patties are cooked to golden brown, and then a simple gravy is made with shallots, mushrooms, beef broth and a little flour which is used as a thickener.

The end result is tender flavorful patties that are just smothered in rich gravy. 

You can serve them over mashed potatoes or my favorite wild rice. 

INGREDIENTS 

Meat Mixture:

  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon barbecue sauce 
  • 4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup shredded Italian blend cheese
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • ½ teaspoon dried parsley 
  • 1 egg
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon truffle oil or olive oil

Gravy:

  • 4 shallots, thinly slices 
  • 1 pint sliced mushrooms 
  • 2 cups beef broth, more if needed for thinning
  • 1 teaspoon truffle oil, if using
  • 1 tablespoon barbecue 
  • 4 dashes Worcestershire
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme 
  • 2 tablespoon flour, add more if needed
  • Salt and pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

For the meat mixture: 

Combine all the ingredients. Knead until all combined. Form into 4 to 6 oval patties.

Fry the patties in a skillet with the butter and oil over medium-high heat on both sides until no longer pink in the middle. Remove from the skillet and pour off any excess grease.

For the gravy: 

Reduce the heat to medium and add in the mushrooms. Cook for 2 minutes then add in the sliced shallots. Stir and cook until golden brown and somewhat soft, for several minutes. Add the beef stock, truffle oil, barbecue, and Worcestershire. Sprinkle in the dried herbs and combine. 

Make a well in the middle of the pan and add the flour. Whisk until combined. 

Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper and more broth if needed for thinning. Then return the patties to the gravy. Spoon the gravy over the top and let them simmer and heat back up for a couple of minutes.

Serve over wild rice, white rice or mashed potatoes. 

Healthy, Recipes

Summer Zucchini Skillet

This quick, one-pot ground turkey skillet with zucchini, corn, tomatoes, and black beans is great for weeknight dinner or meal prep!

INGREDIENTS

  • 14 ounces from 2 medium or 1 large zucchini, quartered and sliced 3/4 inch
  • 1 pound 93% lean ground turkey
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3/4 cups corn kernels, fresh or frozen
  • 1 can diced tomato, drained 
  • 1 jalapeño, diced
  • 1 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon honey 
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup white wine or water
  • lime wedges, optional

INSTRUCTIONS

Spray a large skillet over high heat with oil and brown the turkey, season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon cumin.

Cook, breaking the meat up until the turkey is cooked through, about 5 minutes.

Push the meat to the side, add the onion and cook 1 minute.

Add the black beans, corn, tomato, jalapeño pepper, garlic, and stir with 1/4 cup wine/water.

Add the zucchini remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and cumin.

Mix and cover, cook low 4 to 5 minutes or until the zucchini is tender crisp.

Serve with lime wedges and more cilantro if desired.

Healthy, Recipes

Zucchini Noodles with Sausage and Kale

This zucchini noodle recipe is keto friendly and packed with flavor!

Using a simple zucchini spiralizer or a vegetable julienne peeler, this meal just requires a few ingredients. You can adapt it any way that you want. Add sausage, tomatoes or more vegetables to make it a perfect fit for your family. 

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 medium zucchini, spiralized
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil divided
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 pound sweet Italian ground sausage 
  • 4 cups kale, chopped
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper, to taste

INSTRUCTIONS 

Using your favorite vegetable spiralizer, turn your zucchini into noodles; set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a deep skillet over medium high heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes, sauté for 30 seconds or until fragrant. 

Add sausage to the pan, using a wooden spoon to break down meat into bite-sized pieces. 

Cook until cooked through and golden brown, about 7-9 minutes. 

Add kale to the pan and sauté until it starts to wilt and turn bright green, about 4-5 minutes, stirring frequently. 

Toss in remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and zucchini noodles to the pan, sauté until zucchini is just cooked through, about 2-3 minutes. 

Right before removing from the heat, stir in the parmesan cheese and toss until melted. Check for seasoning then add salt or pepper to taste.

Healthy, Recipes

Taco Cauliflower Skillet

Dinner in under 30 minutes!

This Taco Cauliflower Rice Skillet is quick, easy, healthy, low carb and incredibly delicious. Loaded with ground chicken, vegetables, cauliflower and melted cheese. 

INGREDIENTS 

  • 1 lb ground chicken 
  • 1 head cauliflower, riced 
  • 8 oz. mushrooms, sliced 
  • 1 red pepper, thinly sliced 
  • 1 yellow pepper, thinly sliced 
  • 1 tablespoon Garlic powder 
  • 1 packet Taco Seasoning 
  • ½ cup shredded cheese
  • Chopped cilantro 

INSTRUCTIONS 

Add the olive oil to a skillet over medium heat.

Sauté mushrooms until translucent. Then add in the peppers and garlic powder. Sauté until veggies are cooking through. Transfer to plate. 

Add the ground chicken to the skillet and cook while breaking up into small pieces until the chicken is cooked through. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

Add the cauliflower rice to the skillet with the cooked ground chicken. Stir to mix well. 

Bring to a simmer and then add the taco seasoning 

while stirring add ⅔ cup water. Simmer until the sauce is thickened, taste for seasonings. Add the cheese, stirring until melted. 

Serve with cilantro. 

Healthy, Recipes

Spicy Peanut Ground Chicken Stir Fry

Asian-inspired Stir Fry skillet, prepared in just one pan within minutes.

Enjoy this delicious meal to the fullest, because it’s keto friendly & low-carb plus perfect for meal prepping!

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1-3 tbsp red thai curry paste adjust to taste. 
  • ¼ cup water
  • 3 tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 bag Coleslaw
  • peanuts, garnish optional
  • cilantro, garnish optional

Instructions

In a large pan, heat the oil.

When the oil is hot, add the turkey and cook until it is about half way cooked. 

Add the curry paste, garlic, peanut butter, and soy sauce, and broth/water to the pan. 

Let it simmer and stir until the pork is fully cooked.

Add the slaw mix to the pan.

Cover and let simmer for 2-3 minutes until the veggies cook down to desired crunch level!

Remove from heat. 

Garnish with peanuts and cilantro.

Healthy, On the Side, Recipes

Grapefruit Salad with a Citrus Cilantro Dressing

This salad is perfect for summer!

It is refreshing and tart, with arugula, sliced red onions and creamy goat cheese, all topped with a citrusy cilantro dressing. It’s great as a side salad or add some protein to make it an entrée! It is especially delicious served alongside salmon!

INGREDIENTS 

For the dressing:

  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, packed, stems mostly removed
  • 1 medium-sized pink grapefruit, juiced
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ½  tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar

For the salad:

  • 4–5 cups arugula
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1 large pink grapefruit, sliced with skin on or peeled and split into wedges
  • 1/2 medium-sized red onion, peeled and sliced thinly

INSTRUCTIONS

Make the dressing:

Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend on high until well combined but bits of cilantro still remain.

Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Just shake or stir before adding to the salad.

Assemble the salad:

In a large bowl, add the arugula, goat cheese, grapefruit and onion. Add the desired amount of dressing and toss to combine.

Healthy, Recipes

Asian Cauliflower Bowl

Quick and easy, this Asian cauliflower rice bowl is made with ground turkey, veggies and liquid amino for a healthy, low carb meal.

Cauliflower rice for the win…again. I just love how it soaks up all the flavor and gives you that full feeling with less calories! Make them for lunch or dinner-they’re low carb, flavorful and nutritious!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground Turkey 
  • 3 cups riced cauliflower
  • 2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup green pepper, diced
  • ½ onion, diced 
  • 1 Tbsp minced ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp dried red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp Liquid Aminos 
  • 1 Tbsp sesame seed oil 
  • 1 tsp ginger, minced

Instructions

In a large skillet, Add onion and green peppers to the skillet. Keep the skillet on medium heat, stirring often until the veggies are cooked to desired tenderness. Season with red pepper flakes, salt & pepper. Remove from the skillet. 

Add the ginger, garlic and cauliflower rice and rice vinegar to the same skillet. Stir and cook for about 5 minutes. Remove from the skillet. 

Swirl the sesame seed oil in the skillet, brown the turkey on medium heat, pour liquid aminos over as you cook the meat. Continue until cooked. 

Mix all ingredients together.