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, Small Bites

Beer Cheese Dip

Let’s get ready for some football!! This Beer cheese dip is perfect for any game day party. 

A combination of your favorite beer, a variety of cheeses, and ranch seasonings this recipe is a welcome addition to any appetizer spread! Serve with pretzel bites, tortilla chips or even veggies!

What kind of beer do you like best? Then that is the beer you should use!

  • Dark Beers like stouts, and malts will produce a deep and bitter flavor.
  • Light Beers like ales and IPA’s will give a lighter kind of flavor (this is my personal favorite).
  • Non-Alcoholic beers work just fine in this recipe too!

Think about what you are dipping into this gooey cheesy dip and choose the flavor from there! The darker beers are best with pretzels, pretzel sticks, tortilla chips, and bread. 

For the lighter side, use carrot sticks, broccoli and cauliflower or zucchini.

I use a combination of cheddar, gruyere and cream cheese. The cheddar and gruyere add flavor while the cream cheese adds a creamy texture. Choose any cheese you like! 

This Beer Cheese Dip is super easy to make ahead! All you need to do is cool it and keep it covered in the refrigerator until you’re ready to reheat it!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Pkg. Hidden Valley Dry Ranch Dip 
  • 2 Pkg. Cream Cheese 8 oz. each (softened)
  • 8 Oz. Beer about (1/3-1/2 Cup) 
  • 1 1/2 Cup Cheddar Cheese Shredded
  • ½ cup Gruyère Cheese, Shredded 
  • 4 Green Onions (optional) Diced

INSTRUCTIONS

In a bowl, mix the dip mix, cream cheese, beer, and cheddar cheese. Mix together.

If you want to serve this dip warm, bake in the oven at 350 until bubbling. 

Top with chopped green onion.

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

Cheeseburger Stir Fry

Are you looking to cut out carbs but love burgers?

This recipe is for you! It’s packed with that burger flavor we all love minus the carbs!!

You can switch out the ground turkey for beef or even pork and feel free to add a drizzle of ketchup if you are not too worried about the carbs!

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground turkey 
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 bag coleslaw salad bag 
  • ½ cup diced onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced 
  • ½ cup diced dill pickles
  • ¼ cup diced pickled jalapeños 
  • 3 tbsp Dijon mustard or your favorite mustard 
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Salt & pepper 
  • Fresh parsley for garnish 

Instructions

In a large skillet, heat the oil on medium heat.

Once hot, add the ground turkey and break it up to cook.

When turkey is no longer pink, add the garlic and onions, salt and pepper, and saute for 2 minutes.

Add the coleslaw bag, jalapeños and pickles. Put a lid on the skillet and let the coleslaw cook down for about 3 minutes – until cabbage is tender.

Once cooked down, stir in the mustard and water. Allow excess water to cook down, and if your mixture is really dry, add a tablespoon of water in.

Stir in the shredded cheese.

Garnish with parsley. 

Adapted from 

https://mealplanaddict.com/low-carb-cheeseburger-stir-fry/

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.

Recipes, Small Bites

Asian Ceviche

I love ceviche! This twist on the traditional Ceviche is loaded with seafood, red onions, peppers, cilantro and Thai chili peppers; all marinated in sake and fresh lemon juice. Yup, I said sake! I created this recipe to serve at my family’s Christmas eve dinner! 

It’s such a vibrant dish that’s perfect for weekends or parties. Truly a recipe seafood lovers will instantly fall in love with! 

INGREDIENTS 

  • 1 bag frozen seafood mix
  • 1 pound medium-sized shrimp, cleaned
  • ¼ cup parsley, chopped
  • ¼ cup cilantro , chopped
  • 1 medium size red onion, chopped small
  • 1 medium green pepper, chopped small
  • 1 red sweet pepper in vinegar, diced
  • 1 Thai chili pepper, diced 
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 lemons, juiced
  • ½ tablespoon Sake
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Toasted sesame seeds

INSTRUCTIONS 

Boil frozen seafood mix (15 minutes), shrimp (3 minutes). Strain and place into a bowl. Refrigerate until chilled.

Chop shrimp in small pieces. Mix the remaining ingredients together in a large bowl. 

Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds on top before serving. 

Serves 8–12

Healthy, Recipes

Pan-fried Orange Glaze Grouper

For Christmas Eve this year my sister-n-law and I decided to do something a little different… 

In most Christmas comedy movies, the family ends up getting Chinese after the home cooked dinner goes wrong, so we decided let’s make our own Chinese dinner for Christmas Eve. 

This homemade Asian Orange sauce is so easy! Make a tasty, quick and healthy dinner ready in under an hour, that you can use over fish or chicken! 

This sauce has a delicious umami flavor and it’s full of ginger and garlic plus a little heat from the red chili paste. The best thing about making your own sauces and condiments is you can adjust the recipe to suit yourself. 

Serve this fish with my Garlicky Ginger Green beans and white rice. 

Ingredients

  • 6 -4 oz. portions Grouper or white filets
  • 6 Clove Garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Ginger
  • ½ teaspoon Red Chili Paste
  • ¼ cup Orange marmalade
  • 1 tablespoon Soy sauce, low sodium
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Rice wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoon Sesame oil
  • Zest of one orange, for garnish
  • Green onions, for garnish

Cilantro, for garnish

Instructions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

In a saucepan over medium high heat add orange marmalade, sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, rice vinegar and paste.  Stir until thoroughly combined and just beginning to boil. Set aside.

Add olive oil to an ovenproof frypan and turn to medium high heat.  As it warms, pepper both sides of the fish and add to the frypan.  Sauté fish 3-4 minutes until browned.  Flip filets over and spoon about a tablespoon of sauce over each filet. 

Place in the oven for 5-6 minutes until the fish flakes easily.

Spoon remaining sauce over baked portions.

Top with orange zest and cilantro.

Recipes, Small Bites

Fresh Eggplant Bruschetta

Bruschetta is easily one of my all-time favorite appetizer!

It’s eggplant season! I love this pretty, versatile vegetable and coming up with new ways to use it. Once you make this bruschetta, it will become an easy go-to for using up summer tomatoes and eggplant for years to come.

If you’re looking for a more substantial meal add this as a topping to your favorite pasta!

INGREDIENTS

  • Extra Virgin olive oil
  • Two 1-pound eggplants, chopped
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 1/4 cup packed basil leaves, coarsely shredded
  • One pint cherry tomatoes 
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • pinch of sugar
  • 1 loaf French bread, 1/2 inch slices
  • Freshly grated Parmesan

INSTRUCTIONS

Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. 

Add in the diced onion and eggplant and cook over medium heat for 10-15 minutes or until the eggplant is tender, stirring frequently. Add in the garlic, red pepper flakes and basil leaves half way through cooking.

Add the cherry tomatoes to the eggplant. Season with salt, pepper and a pinch of sugar. 

Cover the pan, wait for the tomatoes to burst for about ten minutes. Squish any whole tomatoes with a wooden spoon and let the tomatoes thicken, about 1 minute. 

Stir in the capers and stir to combine. 

Taste and add the salt & pepper if needed. 

Heat the broiler. 

Brush the bread slices with olive oil and sprinkle with parmesan cheese on both sides. 

Char the bread on both sides.

Spoon the bruschetta onto the bread and top with grated Parmesan and remaining basil leaves. Dig in!

Small Bites

Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers

These bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers are baked instead of fried! Who can resist fresh jalapenos stuffed with cheese, wrapped in bacon and baked to crispy perfection? Not me, that’s for sure. This is the ultimate party snack!

The jalapenos are sliced in half and the seeds and ribs get removed. Removing the seeds and ribs removes most of the heat from the peppers; if you like it spicier, leave some of the seeds and ribs in. The peppers are stuffed with a combination of cream cheese, cheddar cheese and spices. Then wrapped in bacon before baking in the oven. 

I like to serve my bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers with a side of ranch for dipping, but honestly they’re great as-is too.

Ingredients 

  • ½ cup cream cheese
  • ½ cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • ½ teaspoon paprika 
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 12 jalapeno peppers, halved lengthwise, seeds and membranes removed
  • 12 slices bacon

Instructions 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Mix cream cheese, seasonings and cheese together in a bowl until evenly blended. 

Fill each jalapeno half with the cheese mixture. Put halves back together and wrap each stuffed pepper with a slice of bacon. 

Arrange bacon-wrapped peppers on the prepared baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven until bacon is crispy, about 15 minutes.

On the Side, Recipes

Spicy & Sweet Coleslaw

Tangy, sweet and spicy in taste, this coleslaw is far from bland or boring!

Coleslaw is such a budget friendly, versatile side dish, or salad! This crisp, sweet and spicy coleslaw is a perfect way to round out any barbecue or dinner!

Crisp, shredded cabbage mixed with crunchy carrots, parsley and  fresh green onions, then tossed with a slightly sweet, tangy mayonnaise based coleslaw sauce. This slaw is fresh, fabulous and the perfect addition to any Barbecue or try it on my Beef short rib sliders!

While the recipe below calls for small heads of green and purple cabbage, plus carrots, you can absolutely substitute a bag of pre-prepared coleslaw mix from the grocery store!

Ingredients

  • 1 small head cabbage, washed, peeled and shredded
  • 1 small head purple cabbage, washed, peeled and shredded
  • 2-3 large carrots, washed, peeled and shredded
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons Sriracha
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½  teaspoon celery salt
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley 
  • salt and black pepper

Instructions

In a food processor with a grating blade, shred the cabbage and carrots. Process in batches. Set into a large bowl. Add the parsley and toss.

In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sriracha, vinegar, sugar, celery seeds, salt, and black pepper. 

When adding the coleslaw dressing to the vegetables, start with 1/4 cup of dressing, toss and then continue to add the dressing a little bit at a time until desired level of creaminess is achieved. Chances are, you will not need all of the dressing, so it is best to err on the side of caution! I only used 1/3 cup on my coleslaw and I used the rest for dipping my homemade beer battered onion rings!

Serve cold or at room temperature.