A Blog with a Purpose

I started this blog with the intention of making a good shared recipe site. These are all recipes which I have found, cooked, ate and loved (also that my 2 going on 3 picky eaters loved as well: my husband, 6 yr old son and 3 month old daughter). So give them a try and feel free to leave comments on the recipes as well and share this page with your friends. Enjoy - Kenni Holland

Raspberry Almond Salad

OK, so this wasn't a great hit with the family. My husband being the only human carnivore I know said it was weird and my son threw a fit because I put dressing on it. Like I said they are picky. However, I and my sister loved it. It's easy to throw it together and take for lunch or a snack, and good for you too. I will list the ingredients below, but how much you use of each is up to you. The dressing is strong so try it with less before you soak it.

Raspberry Almond Salad

Torn Mixed Greens
Slivered or Sliced almonds
Feta Cheese
Slices of Red Onion
Dressing: 1 tsp of Dijon mustard mixed into 1/4c. Lite Balsamic Vinegarette

The above picture is one I found online so its missing the onion and feta cheese, but it gives you an idea.

Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza

OK So this one was a hit. My son was a little skeptical, he's a separate my food kind of guy so Pizza and casseroles are hard to get him to try. But he liked this one. I almost forgot to take a picture, so below is only HALF of it! I like to use this recipe when we have left over bacon from breakfast. Ziploc bag it up and chop for this recipe for lunch or dinner.

Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza

1 can refrigerated Pillsbury pizza dough
2 lbs extra lean ground beef
1 small jar sun dried tomato pesto
1/3 c shredded parmesean cheese
1/2 small yellow onion chopped
1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 clove minced garlic
5 strips cooked bacon chopped or 1/2 c. real bacon bts
(you can add any other toppings you like)

1. Brown meat and drain grease.
2. Prepare Crust according to package directions
3. Sprinkle crust with Parmesean cheese
4. Spread entire jar of pesto on pizza dough for base sauce)
5. Top with meat, bacon and onions and any other toppings you like.
6. Top with Cheeses
7. Cook according to package directions.


Pepperoni Pizza Pasta

This one was a hit, well with the hubby my son doesn't seem to care for thick noodles, he's an angel hair kinda guy. So if your kids like pizza and macaroni noodles then this should rock the dinner table. You can also add any other pizza toppings you like to this so experiment and post what you added to yours.

Pepperoni Pizza Pasta

1 1/2 c. uncooked elbow macaroni
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 c. sour cream
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 1/2 c. pizza sauce
2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
30 slices pepperoni
1 can (2.25 oz) sliced black olives

Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain. Stir in the eggs, Parmesan cheese, sour cream and Italian seasoning. Transfer to a greased (I used butter to grease) 11"x7" baking dish (or any casserole dish). Bake at 375* for 10 minutes.

Spread with pizza sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese; top with pepperoni and olives. Bake 10-15 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Let stand 10 min before serving.

Tuna Zucchini Cakes

Okay, so if your kids likes fish sticks then they will probably eat this. My kid loves anything that comes in patty form. You take any kind of ground meat and shape it up to look like a hamburger he will eat it. Guess I'm lucky. This isn't the healthiest meal, since it is fried, but it does have veggies snuck in. My fam gave it an A+ I served it with pasta salad and creamed corn (all we had so not the best grouping LOL) they dipped it in ketchup but would probably be good with any fish sauce.

Tuna Zucchini Cakes

1/2 c. finely chopped onion
1 tbsp. butter
1 can (6.5oz) light water packed tuna, drained and flaked
1 c. shredded zucchini
2 eggs lightly beaten
1 tbsp of dried parsley (or you can use 1/3 c fresh minced)
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 c. seasoned bread crumbs, divided ( I used plain but you can experiment or take your favorite flavored crackers and beat the crap out of them in a ziploc bag)
2 tbsp vegetable oil

In a small saucepan, saute the onion in butter until tender. Remove from heat. Add the tuna, zucchini, eggs, parsley, lemon juice, seasoning, and 1/2 c. bread crumbs. Mix well. Shape into patties and coat in remaining bread crumbs (they will be delicate so you may want to move them using a spatula). In a large skillet, heat oil on medium, cook the patties for 3 min on each side or until gold brown.

Ham Broccoli Braid

So this is a recipe I tried twice. The first time I made the terrible mistake of thinking I could substitute thyme for parsley. DO NOT EVER! Make that mistake. It was awful I threw the whole thing away. I made the parsley version tonight and it was much better. This is my own twist on a recipe I found on allrecipes.com using leftover ham. I buy spiral cut hams after holidays like easter, thanksgiving or christmas. I freeze what we don't eat (about 2 or 3 slices a bag) and then reuse the ham in omelets or other recipes that call for cooked ham. There are tons of leftover ham recipes out there and I'm all about disguising left overs for my picky eaters. This recipe is a great customizer, too. You can really put what ever you want in it. This one turned out great and is fairly easy to make.

It's not super pretty, but I'm sure you could make it better I was in a hurry and no one to impress LOL
Ham Broccoli Braid

2 slices spiral cut ham, chopped (you can use any cooked ham or chicken)
2 c. chopped broccoli (fresh or frozen doesn't matter; thaw if frozen)
1 small onion chopped
1 tbsp. parsley
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 1/2 c. shredded cheese (I used the Mexican blend you can use any you like)
1/2 c. sour cream 
2 (8oz) cans refrigerated cresent dough

1. Preheat oven to 350*.
2. Saute broccoli and onion in a little oil till tender.
3. In large bowl combine everything except dough and mix thoroughly.
4. Prepare the dough. Unroll the crescent dough, and arrange on a flat baking sheet. Pinch together perforations to form a single sheet of dough (or you can kneed it all together and roll it out in one sheet between two pieces of parchment paper or on a floured surface then transfer to baking sheet. I found this way alot less stressful. It's really up to you). Using a kinfe cut 1"wide strips in towards the center starting on the long sides. there should be a solid strip 3" wide down the center with fringe down each side.
5. Spread the filling along the center strip. Fold strips over alternating each side. Pinch or twist to seal.
6. Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until dough is done and golden brown (depends on thickness if you rolled it out so try to make it thin).

Slow Cooker BBQ Pork Tenderloin

My husband doesn't usually care for pork tenderloin. Until he had THIS! Thank God for that too because I always am able to find them discounted when they are going out of date. This is super easy and stress free. Will post a pic soon. This makes enough for 2 days with our small family. I am making BBQ sandwiches with coleslaw tomorrow night for dinner.

Slow Cooker BBQ Pork Tenderloin

1 mesquite pork tenderloin (Smithfield makes them but i guess you could use a regular one and marinate over night in mesquite marinade)
1 small onion sliced
1/2c. Coke-Cola
2 cloves garlic or 2 tbsp fresh minced garlic

Place pork tenderloin in bottom of slow cooker. Don't cut it just bend it around to fit. Top with garlic, sliced onion and Coke-Cola. (I squirted some of my fave BBQ sauce over it about 1/4 cup just for good measure but that isn't necessary). Cook on low for 6-7 hours. When serving pull it apart like chopped BBQ and serve either with vinegar based BBQ sauce for a south eastern flair or top it with your favorite sweet BBQ sauce for a western flair. I served it with sauteed squash and onions and corn on the cob.

Lentil Soup

Ok I know, you're saying Lentils? Soup? Gross. Trust me on this one it isn't. This soup is super easy to make and very filling. Try it out you won't be disappointed. My friend, Jessica, came over and tried it and had to have another serving she enjoyed it so much.

Lentil Soup 

1 lb. smoked sausage (large link), sliced
1 lb. dry lentils
1/2  onion, chopped
1/2 c. sliced celery
1/2 c. sliced carrots
1/2 tsp garlic salt
2 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp oregano
1 6-oz can tomato paste
1 small can chopped green chilies (optional)
1 28oz. can diced tomatoes
8 c. water

In a large stock pot combine all of the ingredients except for the diced tomatoes. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low and cook for 1 1/2 hours. Add the diced tomatoes and simmer on low for an additional 30 minutes.

4th of July Dinner

Well it rained in good ole NC on 4th of July which put a damper on our fireworks display. However, we did eat well. My husband prepared a crock-pot dish and I baked a pie and some corn on the cob. The in-laws brought over some watermelon. So I would definitely say we had an All-American meal.

Slow Cooker BBQ Ribs and Potatoes

4 1/2 lbs boneless ribs sliced into servings
2 bottles of your favorite BBQ sauce (we used Jack Daniels)
Red Potatoes 
1 onion sliced

In a large slow cooker, place ribs in the bottom and top with one bottle of BBQ sauce. Place sliced onion on top and fill with quartered red potatoes until cooker is filled top with another bottle of sauce. Place cover on and cook on low for 8 hours. Serve with Corn on the cob.

Cherry Berry Pie

2 cans lite cherry pie filling (you can use regular but my husband accidently bought lite)
2 c frozen blueberries
1 pkg refrigerated pie crusts

Remove pie crusts from pkg and allow to come to room temperature. Place one crust in bottom of 9" pie plate. Place a can of cherry pie filling in pie dish top with 1 cup of blueberries, put another can of cherries in and top with remaining blueberries. cut remaining pie crust in anyway you wish to decorate. And cook according to directions on pie filling. (Times can vary)

Finger Lickin' Easy BBQ Chicken

Ok so this recipe is easy to prepare but does take some time to cook. I recommend preparing everything the night before and refrigerate  then pop in the crock pot before heading to work. It'll be done when you get home.

Finger Lickin' Easy BBQ Chicken

2 lbs chicken drumsticks (with skin removed optional)
1 c. your favorite BBQ sauce (I use sweet baby rays)
1/3 c. Apricot preserves (or peach preserves)
2 Tbsp yellow mustard

Place drumsticks in crock pot. Mix remaining 3 ingredients in a bowl and pour over chicken. Cook on low for 7-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. I recommend the low setting, the chicken will fall off the bone. Spoon sauce over chicken when serving. I serve with corn on the cob, steamed buttered green beans and biscuits.

Carolina Treet Slow Cooker BBQ
Here is an even easier version. If you live in NC you will be able to find this at almost any grocery store, if not you'll have to order it online. Well worth the shipping. Put 4 split chicken breasts in crockpot and cover with a half a bottle of Carolina Treet BBQ sauce (It's only meant for cooking with but you can spoon the juices over the chicken when you serve. It is delicious!!)

Vegetarian Lasagna

This recipe was requested by my husband's friend Eric to be posted. Him and his girlfriend were over when I fixed this dish and lucky for them I shared LOL. It was the first time I made an all veggie dish for my meat loving family and it was a hit. Was told it was the best lasagna they had ever had and that it would be even better with some beef in it LOL. So if you want to add beef omit some quantity of the veggies and brown it good.
Will post a pic of mine when I make it again

Vegetarian Lasagna


4 medium zucchini
1 pkg fresh mushrooms (amount depends on taste, I use the small pkg or 2 small cans if no fresh avail)
1 medium onion
Fresh garlic (to taste, I use 2 tsp minced)
9oz frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and drained of liquid
28oz jar pasta sauce (again I use Prego Chunky garden it's my favorite)
24 oz. mozzarella cheese ( I use a 4 cup bag since my hubby likes extra cheese)
8 oz crumbled feta cheese
Olive Oil (to coat the pan)
Lasagna Noodles

1. Prepare Lasagna noodles according to pkg directions. Meanwhile, mince zucchini, mushrooms, onion and garlic.
2. Coat large skillet with oil and saute veggies until tender. Add defrosted drained spinach. Add pasta sauce.
3. In 13"x9" baking dish layer as follows: noodles, veggie mix, mozzarella cheese, noodles, veggie mix, mozzarella cheese, noodles, top with feta cheese.
4. Bake in a pre-heated 350* oven until brown and bubbly (remember the feta won't melt, I didn't know that at first)

You can serve this with some garlic bread. I use the Italian loaf bread you can get from Wal-Mart for 99 cent, mix together some room temp salted butter with minced garlic and spread over slices and toast it in the oven. YUM

I got this recipe from www.momswhothink.com/easy-recipes, I have gotten alot of good recipes from this site.

Upside-Down Pizza

This recipe is awesome. My sister got it from a friend, who got it from a friend, and so on. Best thing about it: you can do your own variation based on you families taste and what you're craving.

Upside Down Pizza

1 lb lean ground beef (I use the leanest they sell 97/3 so I don't have to mess with draining it)
1 zucchini chopped
1 small onion chopped
1 can mushrooms or fresh if you like.
1-9oz pkg frozen spinach, thawed
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (doesn't matter if it's fine or coarse as long as its shredded)
1 jar marinara sauce (I use Prego's chunky garden tomato and garlic)
1 refrigerated pie crust (comes with 2 pieces usually)
Garlic Powder
Italian Seasoning
Powdered Parmesan cheese

1. Take out the pie crusts and let them come to room temperature (about 15 minutes)
2. Line 9" pie pan with one crust you will use the other to top it with.
3. In large skillet or electric skillet, brown beef over medium heat (drain if alot of grease) add zucchini, onion and mushrooms. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and Italian seasoning to taste (you can omit any of these if you like) while cooking.
4. Once veggies are tender and beef is done add the jar of sauce and simmer for a few minutes.
5. Meanwhile, drain liquid out of spinach and mix some salt into the spinach.
6. Pour meat mixture into pie pan.
7. Top with spinach.
8. Top with mozzarella cheese.
9. Top with other pie crust tuck in crust around the edge and pinch the edges (it says flute the edges but I don't know what in the heck that means I just pinch mine LOL).
10. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top of crust, cut a few slits in the crust too.
10. Cook at 400* for 20 minutes or until crust is done (it really depends on you pie pan I use a stoneware one and it takes almost 30 for mine to be done)

My sister adds black olives and artichokes to hers.
I also thought about using sausage and chunks of pepperoni instead of ground beef.
You really can put what ever the heck you want to in it. Use your imagination.

A Blog with a Purpose!

OK, so here's the deal. I'm no English teacher. So please don't give me grief about my grammer and double negatives. I just wanted to start this blog as a woman, as a mom, as a intermediate home cook. I always search online to find recipes and more often than not they are duds. Flavorless, nasty, and expensive. I'm a practical mom, I work and have 2 going on 3 picky eaters (my husband, 6 year old son, and 3 month old daughter). I need stuff that will satisfy their taste buds and our wallet.

So this is how the site works. I will post a recipe that I have found, tested and loved on this blog. I will give them ratings one from me, one from my husband and one from my son. I can't guarantee it will satisfy your family but if your family is like mine then this should be awesome for you.

Check it out and tell me what you think in the comments section below.

This is a terrible family pic but it's the only one I've got.