Chile Con Queso

this was great! and easy!

Chile Con Queso

2 (14.5 oz) cans diced roasted tomatoes
dash garlic powder
2 tablespoons onion, finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
15 ounces canned black beans (15 ounce)
4 ounces chopped green chiles (4 ounce)
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1/2 cup cheese, reduced fat Sargento mexican blend
2 tablespoons minced cilantro

Spray large saucepan with cooking spray. Over medium-high heat, saute’ onions. Add seasonings and tomatoes. Stir occasionally, until mixture starts to thicken, 8 -10 minutes. Turn the heat to low and add the beans, chiles, 2 tablespoons of the parsley, and the vinegar; cook, stirring occasionally, until bubbly, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cheese.Place in a serving dish or in individual bowls; top with the cilantro and remaining parsley.
Yield: 4 servings. Per serving (about 1 cup)= 184 Calories; 4g Fat (20.2% calories from fat); 12g Protein; 27g Carbohydrate; 9g Dietary Fiber; 10mg Cholesterol; 744mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Lean Meat; 2 Vegetable; 0 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Blue Cheese Chicken

Well, this was supposed to be something else but I didn’t have the ingredients I thought I had so i ended up with this but that’s ok–it tastes really good!

Blue Cheese Chicken
cooking spray
12 oz boneless skinless chicken thighs
1/2 c. fat free blue cheese dressing
1/4 c. reduced fat cheddar cheese, shredded
1 TB bacon bits

Spray shallow casserole dish with cooking spray. Place chicken in pan. Pour dressing over chicken and top with cheese and bacon bits.
Yield: 3 servings. Per serving= 219 Calories; 7g Fat (27.9% calories from fat); 24g Protein; 18g Carbohydrate; trace Dietary Fiber; 83mg Cholesterol; 765mg Sodium. Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Lean Meat; 0 Fat; 1 Other Carbohydrates.

Italian Sausage soup

This was really tasty! and a good way to get some veggies in.

Italian Sausage soup

8 ounces sausage, reduced fat Jimmy Dean
28 ounces fat-free beef broth
6 ounces fresh spinach
2 cups chopped zucchini
15 1/2 ounces great northern beans, canned
14 1/2 ounces canned tomatoes
1 cup shredded carrots
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon italian seasoning

In a stockpot or Dutch oven, brown sausage with onion. Stir in broth, tomatoes and carrots, and season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 15 minutes. Stir in beans with liquid and zucchini. Cover, and simmer another 15 minutes, or until zucchini is tender. Remove from heat, and add spinach. Replace lid allowing the heat from the soup to cook the spinach leaves. Soup is ready to serve after 5 minutes.
Yield: 5 servings. Per serving (about 1 1/2 cups)= 263 Calories; 9g Fat (27.9% calories from fat); 24g Protein; 29g Carbohydrate; 7g Dietary Fiber; 32mg Cholesterol; 783mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 1 1/2 Lean Meat; 1 1/2 Vegetable; 0 Fat.

Tomato & Cheese Grits

I’d been craving cheese grits and this hit the spot!

Baked Tomato and Cheese Grits
1 1/4 c. skim milk
2 c. water
dash salt
1 c. quick cooking grits
1/3 c. green onions, chopped & sauteed w/ a little Pam
1 2/3 c. shredded reduced fat Mexican blend cheese
1 can Rotel tomatoes with chilies
dash – garlic powder
dash black pepper
2 eggs, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 350*. In a saucepan, bring milk and water to a boil. Add the salt. Slowly add grits and return to a boil. Stir for a minute. Reduce heat and cover. Cook for 5-6 minutes. Remove from heat and add sauteed green onions, cheese, and Rotel tomatoes. Mix well and stir in beaten eggs. Pour into a 9×13 dish sprayed w/ Pam. Bake for 35 minutes.
Yield: 6 servings. per serving= 234 Calories; 9g Fat (32.2% calories from fat); 14g Protein; 27g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 85mg Cholesterol; 815mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 0 Non-Fat Milk; 0 Fat.

Geek Squad – at your own risk!

I just want to warn you against taking your computers to the Geek squad at Best Buy. After a series of events that resulted in my lap top being with them for 7 days and me making 6 trips there (after they would tell me the problem was fixed–but it wasn’t). Finally, they charged me $130 and wiped my computer back to factory settings and put all of my documents in a folder on the desktop–where it was VERY difficult to find anything. The folders had odd names and did not seem to be in any sort of order. NOW I still have problems with this computer. The folder tree is no longer a nice simple order of the components of this computer–it’s some sort of disordered mess AND there are several folders I don’t have rights to. I’m sure they’ll say it is a virus but when I paid them $130 I also bought the expensive Anti-virus software they recommended so it seems unlikely that I have a virus. If you take your computer to the Geek Squad you do so at your own peril. They are not helpful and you’ll end up spending more money to undo what they’ve screwed up.

Pass It To Me Pasta Salad

This would be a great salad for summer–nothing to go bad in the sun.

Pass it to me Pasta Salad
4 oz Smart Taste rotini pasta
16 oz frozen broccoli flowerets
1/2 c. frozen peas
1/2 c. shredded carrots
1 TB extra virgin olive oil
2 TB red wine vinegar
8 oz. tomato sauce w/ garlic, basil & oregano
2 oz sliced black olives, drained

Cook pasta in boiling water. Thaw broccoli and peas in microwave. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and toss to combine.
Yield: 6 servings. Per serving= 139 Calories; 4g Fat (22.6% calories from fat); 6g Protein; 25g Carbohydrate; 6g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 350mg Sodium. Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 1 1/2 Vegetable; 0 Fruit; 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Pizza muffins

These were great!

Pizza Muffins
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. 2% mozzarella cheese
1 oz turkey pepperoni, cut in half
2 3/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp Italian seasoning
8 oz tomato sauce w/basil, garlic & oregano
1 egg
1 tsp onion powder
6 tsp reduced fat Parmesan cheese

Combine flour, cheese, pepperoni, baking powder, onion powder and Italian seasoning. Make a well in the center of the mixture. Add the tomato juice and the egg and stir until the dry ingredients are moistened. Spoon mixture into lightly greased muffin tin, filling 2/3 full. Sprinkle each muffin with ½ tsp grated parmesan cheese. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Let stand 3 minutes before removing from the pans.
Yield: 12 muffins. Per muffin= 119 Calories; 3g Fat (19.4% calories from fat); 7g Protein; 18g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 25mg Cholesterol; 373mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 0 Vegetable; 0 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

spicy blackeyed peas & ham

This was even better than I thought it would be!

Spicy Blackeyed Peas & Ham
1 lb frozen blackeyed peas
1 c. diced lean ham
2 c. water
1 tsp liquid smoke
1 tsp smoked paprika
14.5 oz can tomatoes w/ green chilies
dash cayenne
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp chipotle hot sauce

Combine all ingredients in a large sauce pan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes.
Yield: 4 servings. Per serving= 220 Calories; 3g Fat (10.5% calories from fat); 18g Protein; 33g Carbohydrate; 6g Dietary Fiber; 16mg Cholesterol; 967mg Sodium. Exchanges: 2 Grain(Starch); 1 1/2 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 0 Fat.

Taco Beef

This was very good! I actually made a third of recipe in a 1.5 qt crock.

Taco Beef
1 1/2 pounds beef top loin
1 1/2 cups salsa
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon cumin

Dice top loin. Combine all ingredients in 3 quart slow cooker. Cook on low 4-6 hours.
Yield: 8 servings. Per serving= 190 Calories; 12g Fat (58.0% calories from fat); 16g Protein; 4g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 48mg Cholesterol; 256mg Sodium. Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 2 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 1 Fat.

Mexi stuffed Peppers

This is also low sodium and really good!

Mexi Stuffed Peppers
4 bell peppers
1/2 cup bulgur
8 ounces ground beef, 96/4
2 tablespoons diced onion
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
14 1/2 ounces canned tomatoes with green chiles, drained
4 tablespoons cheese, reduced fat Sargento mexican blend

Preheat oven to 350^. Cut the tops off 4 large bell peppers and set aside. Put ½ cup of bulgur in a medium bowl with 1 cup of water; set aside. Meanwhile, brown ground beef with onion in a large skillet. Add chili powder, cumin and paprika. Add softened bulgur and tomatoes to skillet. Cook until liquid is gone. Place bell peppers in casserole dish. Place beef mixture into each pepper. Top each pepper with 1 tablespoon of cheese. Bake 20 minutes.
Yield: 4 stuffed peppers. Per pepper= 200 Calories; 4g Fat (18.0% calories from fat); 18g Protein; 26g Carbohydrate; 6g Dietary Fiber; 38mg Cholesterol; 500mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 2 Vegetable; 0 Fat.