Archive for the 'Dinner meal plans' Category


Smoky Bacon Mac ‘n Cheese!

I haven’t posted in awhile.   My husband kept pointing to the picture of  Smoky Mac n’ Cheese on the Betty Crocker Calendar I have hanging up.  I told him I would make it before September was up because it is Septembers picture.    I did change somethings in this reciepe.  But it was a great Mac n’ Cheese with bold intense flavor!

Smoky Bacon Mac ‘n Cheese!

Preparation 30 minutes,  Total time 50 minutes,  Servings 8

Note:  I found all the ingredients at Aldis except for the Smoked Cheddar Cheese block that I bought at HyVee.  The cheese is the most expensive item at$5.   Besides that all the other ingredients are not to pricey.  This taste like a quality Mac and Cheese dish!

3 cups of uncooked elbow macaroni (12 oz)

1 teaspon of Spicy Brown Mustard

1 pound of bacon

1 1/2 cups of whipping cream

1/2 teaspoon of coarse salt

1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes

8 oz smaked Cheddar cheese (I used on block of cheese), shredded making 2 cups

2 cans of fire roasted diced tomatoes, drained

1/4 cup sliced green onions (4 medium stalks)

1/2 cup grated Parmsean cheese

1/2 cup of croutons (crumbled)

2 teaspoons of olive oil

1. Cook and drain the macaroni.  Then return to saucepan; cover to keep warm.

2. Fry up the bacon in the pan and make crispy.  Chop bacon up in to small bits and leave in a bowl with a lid on to keep warm.

3.  In the mean time heat your oven to 375 degrees F. Spray 13×9 inch glass baking dish with cooking spray.

4.  Get a 2 quart saucepan, heat whipping cream, mustard, salt, and red pepper flakes to boiling.  Reduce heat; stir in shredded smoked cheddar cheese with wire whisk until smooth.

5. Pour Sauce over macaroni.  Stir in tomatoes, bacon and onions.  Pour into backing dish.

6.  In small bowl, mix Parmesan cheese and crouton crumbs (i used my blender to chop up the croutons).   Stir in oil.  Sprinkle over top of macaroni mixture.

7.  Bake uncovered 15 to 20 minutes or until edges are bubbly brown and top is golden brown.

Note that be sure to not substitute the whipping cream for milk or half and half because those ingredients will curdle when combined with tomatoes.


Jamaican Pumpkin Soup Recipe

Jamaican Pumpkin Soup – Serves 8!

1 acorn squash
1 package of Grace Pumpkin Soup Mix
1 package of Grace Cock Soup Mix
8 cups chicken broth
4 cup of water
5 chicken drumsticks (or whatever kind of chicken you want)
1/4 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 carrots sliced
1 sprig thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 Irish Potato chopped
1 Sweet Potato Yam Chopped
2 cups of flour (to make dumpling) put as many in as you want!
1 or 2 habanero peppers (do not cut) just add!
First add the chicken broth, grace pumpkin soup packet, grace cock soup packet, thyme, garlic and water.  Start it off to boil.  Add the chicken so it can start cooking.  Then Peel and cut one the Acorn Squash.  Use a small slice for soup or if you want a thicker stew, use all the squash.  We love thick soup so we use the whole squash. When I am done peeling one item I put it in the pot and go to the next.  Then Peel and cut up sweet  potato yam. Next peel and cut up irish potatoes. Then peel and cut carrots.  Then chop onion and add it in.  My husband does the dumplings.  Make the dumplings out of flour and water and put in the pot.  Then add salt, pepper, habanero peppers, and boil until all items are cooked.  Constantly mix the mixture so it doesn’t stick to the bottom.  You will need a big soup pot to make this meal.  Then at the end scoop out the thyme and habanero peppers and throw away.  Then serve in a bowl!
This is my favorite meal!   In America we love our Chicken Noodle Soup and I say just as loved in Jamaica is the pumpkin soup.  It can be a simple puree soup or it can be a meal like above.
Were can you find cock soup and pumpkin soup mix if you don’t visit Jamaica often or live near a Jamaican Grocery store in the city??  You can buy them on Amazon.  Just look for Grace Pumpkin Soup or Cock Pumpkin Soup packets.

Crock Pot Maccorni and Cheese with Ham –

Crock Pot Maccorni and Cheese with Ham –

16oz box of elbow macaroni (cooked)
12 oz can of Evaporated milk
2 eggs
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
4 cups of Sharp shredded cheddar cheese
1 1/2 cups of milk
1/2 cup of ham
1. Coat the inside of the slow cooker with cooking spray
2. In a Large bowl, beat the eggs with the evaporated milk and regular milk.
3.  Then mix in the uncooked macaroni, ham and 3 cups of cheese.
4.  Transfer it to the slow cooker and sprinkle the last cup of cheese on top.
5.  Cook on low for 4-5 hours.  Note do not take off the lid and mix while cooking.  It will be fine.
We love this dish and it is great when you are busy working.  Mix everything together and put in fridge the night before.  So when you go to work the next day all you have to do is turn the crockpot on! 🙂

 Sorry I have been slow – I really did cook but been so tired and trying to get last minute things done.  The baby will be here next Thursday morning.  So now less than a week!


Dinner tonight was Pizza Boats!

What is cooking at the Brown’s house tonight it is pizza boats.  A very fast easy recipe.  If you have worked all day this is a great one!  I worked all day finishing my 3rd graduate class for the summer.  I am all done with graduate school unless I consider administration in my field or another field of study.  This recipe was easy and fast for an energy drained mom!  It was liked by all in my house.  Miss 3 even ate it!!!  She is the world’s pickiest eater so it must be good.


A pack of hamburger buns $1 (I only used 3 buns out of the pack)

A package of mozzarella cheese (the amount I used only cost a $1)

Pizza Sauce (the amount I used cost only $.25)

Pepperoni slices (the amount I used cost approximately $1)

Cost of Pizza Boats – $3.25 (plus I have left over ingredients to make them again next week!)

2 ears of corn on the cob $.50

strawberries for 2 – $.98

The cost of the meal for the three of us $4.73

The above picture is before the pizza boats are put in the oven.

First spray the bottom of the pan with cooking spray so they don’t stick.  Then lay out enough hamburger buns to feed your family.  Next coat the buns with pizza sauce, third I added three pepperoni slices to each , fourth I covered with mozzarella cheese, fifth I added one pepperoni to the top of the buns.  Then put in the oven at 350 degrees for 12-14 minutes.  Until the cheese has melted and the buns are nice and toasted.

I will be making  this meal again because Miss 3 loved it!


Taco Scoops Recipe

We ate Taco Scoops for dinner on Sunday night.  I moved my last meal up to Sunday because we skipped a meal for the family reunion we had on Saturday.

Taco scoops

1 bag of Fritos Scoops

1/2 of an onion

1/2 of a green pepper


sour cream

1 lb of hamburger

1 pack of taco seasoning (which is usually cheap with a coupon) or you can make your own.






(prepared and ready to pop in the oven)

First cook the hamburger in the skillet, then drain the fat (we get the leanest sirloin hamburger we can get).  Then add the taco seasoning.  In a cassorale dish put a layer of Fritos scoops on the bottom, then add hamburger, next the cheese, then the onions and green peppers.  Put in the oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.  Then serve in a bowl and put a dab of salsa and sour cream on top if desired.





(after cooking in the oven)

This was another hit dh told me he was not in the mood for Mexican food but he ate ever last bite!


Dinner – Macaroni Salad and Jerk Chicken Recipes

This meal we had for dinner yesterday and it was yummy and the ingredients are not to expensive either.


Macaroni Salad – (serves 4-6)

 16oz box of elbow macoroni noodles
1 carrot
1 green pepper
1/4th of a red onion
1/2 cup of mayo
4 tbsp lemon juice
4 tbsp of vinger
7 tbsp of sugar
1/2 tbsp of salt
1/2 tbsp of pepper
(mixing all the ingredients together in one large bowl)
Cook the elbow macaroni noodles first.  Why the noodles are cooking slice the carrot, green pepper and red onion into little bit size pieces (I make mine very tiny).  Next in a bowl put mayo, lemon juice, vinger, sugar, salt, and pepper.  Mix all the ingerdients well.  Then drain your noodles with cold water and put in a bowl.  Then put the veggies in the bowl with noodles and mix.  Next mix in the liquid mixture in the bowl.  Finally put the macoroni salad in the fridge to cool for a couple hours.
Thank you to 5 dollar meals for this one.  I did the reciepe just a little different.
This was a hit with dh and he ate it all up!!!
Jerk Chicken – (serves 2 or 3)
5 drum sticks
1/4 cup of Walkerswood Mild Jerk Seasoning
2 plastic bags (for marinating in fridge)
Rub Walkers Mild (wet) jerk seasoning on the chicken legs.  Marinate the chicken in the fridge over night.  (warning if you use Walkers Hot jerk seasoning sauce you will be on fire!!!).  Then after marinating for a day the chicken out and grill them until ready!! Yummy one of our favorites!
Where can I get Walkerswood Jerk seasoning?    Here in Chicago we have found a store on the south side.  Jamaican grocery stores are found near the largest cities like New York City, Chicago, and so on!  If you don’t have one near you can order the seasoning here at  Sam’s Caribbean.  If they only have hot in stock you can always call and they can order you some mild.  It may take sometime to get it in but it is worth it.  Trust me if you get hot you will be on FIRE!
Yes and I know I should of made rice and peas with this meal.  Sometime coming soon I will give the reciepe for rice and peas.  Hopefully my mother inlaw can teach me how to cook more Jamaican meals this Christmas :)!

Chicken Fried Rice – Dinner number one from my blog about what is for dinner (for the rest of June!)

What is for Dinner at the Brown’s house?  Well tonight it was Chicken Fried Rice yummy!  Just as good as carry out.  We are trying not to eat out much right now with the baby on the way.  I love staying in and making dinner for my family too.  Without teaching now it is something fun to do for summer.  I am hoping I can keep this up when I go back to work.  The left overs are for lunch and if they weren’t used for lunch I could freeze the left overs for another night.   Checkout what we have scheduled for dinner for the rest of June HERE!  One thing now only if I could get Miss 3 to eat anything –  She had one egg for breakfast, didn’t eat her snack at school,  not sure if she ate lunch at the sitter, and she had a Popsicle and about 10 chips for dinner.  Yes she would be a cheap dinner date!  She loves plain rice but wouldn’t eat any ugh – that is my girl.  Hoping this baby will be a better eater.

Chicken Fried Rice – (servings 6)

ingredients used –

One small white onion

Two large Carrots

2 1/2 cups of white rice and 4 cups of water (cooked in the rice cooker)

5 Chicken Legs

2 Eggs

1/2 cup of Soy Sauce

3 tablespoons of Canola Oil

Rice Cooker – White Rice

Frying the Chicken in Skillet

The Final Product a bowl of Yummy Chicken Fried Rice

Left overs for later – dated and labeled.

Cooking Directions

I started out first frying the 5 chicken legs in a skillet.  Next I put on the rice in the rice cooker (if you don’t have one you can make it on the stove).  Next I chopped the onion and carrots.  Then in a large skillet or a wok throw in 3 tablespoons of oil the carrots to cook first let them get tender.  Then throw in the onions and let them get translucent.   Then add the cooked chicken ( I take the chicken out of the skillet and remove the skin and then cut into bit size strips).  Push the ingredients to the sides of the pan and scramble the two eggs in the middle.  Then mix ingredients together.  Then put the rice into the skillet and mix with ingredients.  Then add your 1/2 cup of Soy Sauce at the end mix well together.  Finally serve hot.

My husband asked why so much for the two of us and I replied left overs for lunch tomorrow.

Note:  You can use any kinds of veggies and meat you want like peas, green onions, pork, shrimp, and so on. 

Side Fruit Dish – 2 mixed fruit cups included – watermelon, one banana, and one nectarine.

You will find to keep cost low: I will use several of the ingredients in other dishes like carrots, onions and chicken for the rest of the month.  For example:  I bought a big pack of chicken legs (15 legs).  I used 5 legs in the chicken fried rice.  I will use 5 legs for Jamaican Pumpkin Soup.  I will also use the other 5 legs for Jerk Chicken.

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