Salsa Verde Chicken Chili


There is nothing quite as satisfying as a nice hearty soup or chili on a cool day. It’s even more satisfying when you can throw it together in a matter of minutes. With this chili you can be sitting down to a bowl of deliciousness before you know it.

This chili is not your typical thick chili. It’s honestly more like a soup. So call it what you like, but either way – it’s just down right yummy!!!

If you have the time and want to make your own salsa verde, I would highly recommend it. If you don’t have a recipe, I happen to have a delicious one that you could use!
Check it out here -> Salsa Verde – Tomatillo Salsa

Salsa Verde Chicken Chili - Easy to make with just a few ingredients! Perfect to make on a busy day.
In a stock pot add:
6 cups of Chicken Stock*
2 cups (or 16 oz jar) Salsa Verde – I use Ortega Medium Salsa Verde
2 (15.5 oz cans) Great Northern Beans, drained and rinsed
1 tsp Ground Cumin
Shredded Meat from an Entire Rotisserie Chicken
Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
Salt to taste, if needed

Bring to a simmer. Stirring occasionally – for about 15 minutes.
Taste and adjust seasoning to your preference. I don’t need to add salt because the bullion I use is already seasoned.
*I like to use a roasted chicken boullion base (Better Than Boullion is my go to brand) If you do this you will need 2 TBSP of Boullion base with 6 cups of water

Garnish with:
Freshly chopped cilantro – can add to stock pot or to individual servings
Chopped avocado – I like to squeeze lime juice over the avocado to keep it from turning brown and it gives the chili a nice freshness.
Sour Cream – for a little creaminess (optional)

How easy is that!? I hope you enjoy it as much as my family does.

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Homemade & Hearty Vegetable Beef Stew


Homemade & Hearty Vegetable Beef Stew

Beef stew is definitely a favorite around our house! It is just homey and comforting and one of those dishes that everyone had growing up, so it just make you feel good! You have to start it nice and early, so the kitchen is just warm and smells heavenly all day.

I think that this stew is even better the next day. I mean it’s delicious right away, but it thickens up as it sits over night in the fridge. The flavors just meld that much longer. It is just downright comfort food at it’s best!!! Especially when you have fresh hot bread baking away, just in time to serve with it.

Here is what you need & the steps it takes to get a wonderful pot of beef stew!

Ingredients:
2 lbs stew beef ( the kind that is pre-cut into cubes )
1 vidalia onion, coarsely chopped
4 stalks of celery, sliced on the bias
2 cups (a couple of handfuls) of baby carrots, cut in half – also on the bias
8 oz pkg sliced baby bella mushrooms
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 lb baby red potatoes, cut into bite sized chunks
2 cans fire roasted diced tomatoes
4 cups low sodium beef broth
2 Tbsp worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
2 bay leaves
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme, crush with fingers
3/4 tsp dried rosemary, crush with fingers
1/2 tsp dried marjoram
1 cup all purpose flour
sea salt & fresh cracked black pepper – needed in a few steps
olive oil, as needed – about 6 Tbsp

Feel free to omit and use any veggies that YOUR family likes!
I’ve added corn to it. I’ve made it with fresh green beans, too. Make it your own!
The measurements on the veggies is very forgiving, too. If you want more, add more! If you want less and make it more of a beef stew, that’s fine, too! It’s so easy to adjust it to the way you want it.

Doesn’t this make your mouth water!? Oh man, it’s so delicious!!!
Homemade & Hearty Vegetable Beef Stew

  • First step, browning the beef:
    *Cut the cubes of stew beef into similar bite sized pieces. You want the same size pieces so they cook evenly. I like to use scissors.
    *Put flour in a dish that has a lip, like a pie pan or casserole dish. Season flour with 1 tsp salt & 1/4 tsp pepper.
    *Dredge the beef in the seasoned flour mixture, one good handful at a time.
    *Using a large dutch oven/pot ( with a lid ) Heat about a tbsp of oil over medium high heat.
    *Shake off any excess flour from the beef and add to the heated oil.
    *Let the meat brown evenly, but you don’t need to cook it through – just slightly browning in this step. It will only takes a few minutes. Don’t crowd the beef. It usually takes me about 4 batches.
    *As each batch of beef is down browning, remove from pot and place in a heat safe dish that will be large enough to hold all of the meat when done.
    *Check your oil level, between batches. You may need to add more if the pot is drying out. Make sure that you’re not burning the flour that is sticking to the bottom of the pot. It will stick, but that is okay. Lower the heat if you need to.
    *When the last batch of beef has browned, remove from heat and set aside.

  • Next step, cooking the veggies:
    *Drizzle a couple tablespoons of olive oil on the bottom of the same pot that you used for the meat and heat up the oil over medium heat.
    *Add onion, carrots & celery and a good sprinkle of salt & pepper.
    *Sweat the veggies, stirring every few minutes to be sure they don’t stick or start to burn, this takes about 10 to 15 minutes until onions are softened. The carrots & celery should still have some crunch.
    *Add the mushrooms & minced garlic and continue to sweat veggies, another 6-8 minutes.
    -The mushrooms will release some liquid, so it keeps the garlic from cooking too fast, but it will start to stick to the bottom so be sure to continue stirring, scraping the bottom of the pot.

    Last step, making the stew:
    *Add the 2 cans of diced tomatoes and give a good stir and simmer for a few minutes.
    *Add the 4 cups of beef broth and give it a good stir, scraping the bottom really well.
    *Add worcestershire, red wine vinegar, bay leaves, oregano, thyme, rosemary, marjoram, garlic powder & onion powder. Give the pot a really good stir.
    *Add the cubed potatoes and the browned stew beef, including any juices that is left in the dish with the beef.
    *Lower the heat so the stew is slightly simmering & cover the pot partially with lid. Don’t cover it completely.

  • It’s going to simmer for a few hours at this point. You’ll need to stir it every so often to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom and to be sure it’s not boiling over. It will thicken up and the beef will be nice and tender when it is done. After a couple of hours, try a piece of the beef. If it still has a chewy texture, let it simmer a little longer. It will get to a point where it is soft & easy to chew. It could take up to 3 hours before it’s ready.
  • At this time, too. Season with salt & pepper to your liking. I like to wait until it’s almost done. This way you know that the herbs have all cooked into the broth, the veggies & the  meat have done their jobs, releasing liquids and absorbing flavors.
  • When it’s done, remove the bay leaves. It will be piping hot, so I like to serve up a few bowls and let them sit for a few minutes before we dig in. Serve with a sprinkle of grated parmesan cheese over the top, if you’d like. You can also add fresh chopped parsley over the top.

Homemade Beef Stew

  • You must have fresh bread with the stew so you can sop up any broth left in the bowl 🙂
  • DIG IN & ENJOY

Creamy Chicken & Wild Rice Soup


Creamy Chicken & Wild Rice Soup Recipe

I am warning you right now that you will get addicted to this soup! It is ridiculously delicious & comforting & warming & just down right yummy in your tummy! It will might even make you want to nap after eating a bowl. You have been warned!

This recipe is for a BIG POT of soup. It filled my enamel cast iron dutch oven to the top. It makes enough to share with friends & family – if you don’t have 8 people to feed at home that is! I always make big batches so I have leftovers, too!

You can easily cut the recipe in half, for at least 4 servings

Creamy Chicken & Wild Rice Soup

Okay, this is what you need:

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 stalks of celery, diced
  • 4 carrot sticks, diced
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup flour (or 1/2 cup corn starch)*
  • 8 cups water*
  • 2 Tbsp + 2 tsp Roasted Chicken Base*
  • 4 cups light cream
  • 4 cups cooked wild rice
  • 2 lbs chicken breasts
  • 2 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric

This is what you need to do:

  • Prepare the wild rice as directed & set aside. Use your favorite wild rice. In this recipe I use 2 boxes of Rice-A-Roni Long Grain Wild Rice and it’s the perfect amount. I like to get my veggies ready while the rice is cooking!
  • You can also get the chicken going as the rice is cooking. Take the chicken breast and pound them out with a mallet, if you have one, to thin them out slightly and so they are the same thickness. Season with salt & pepper.
  • In your dutch oven or stock pot that you are going to make the soup in, drizzle a couple tablespoons of olive oil on the bottom and heat up. Drop the seasoned chicken breasts in and brown both sides, slightly. It should take a few minutes on each side to get them cooked through. Depends on the thickness of the chicken. Don’t let the oil burn. You’ll need to continue cooking in the same pot!
  • When the chicken is done, remove and set aside to cool. Then you can cut it into bite sized pieces.
  • Into the same pot, while still hot – add the butter, chopped onion, diced carrots & celery. You’ll want to cook the veggies until just softened. Stirring constantly. Then add the parsley. Make sure to scrape all of that goodness off of the bottom of the pot while you’re stirring.
  • Sprinkle the flour* over the softened veggies and mix thoroughly. Let the flour soak up all of the juices from the butter &  veggies. Cook for a few minutes. It’s okay if it starts sticking to the bottom of the pot, just don’t let it get too dark.
    *Use the corn starch option to make it Gluten-Free
  • Now add the water and scrape up all of that good stuff on the bottom of the pot*
  • Add the chicken base and give another good stir*
    *You can use 8 cups chicken broth/stock in place of the water & chicken base
  • Add the light cream and continue to stir so that it does not stick to the bottom of the pot.
  • Add the chicken & the wild rice and give a good stir.
  • Add the turmeric, salt & pepper. Stir & taste. Adjust seasonings to your liking.
  • Simmer until it thickens slightly – don’t let it boil – it takes a good 10-15 minutes.It does thicken as it sets, too – if it gets too thick for you, just add more chicken broth to thin it out
    Creamy Chicken & Wild Rice Soup Recipe

It’s so good on it’s own, you don’t need anything else to go with it!

ENJOY THOROUGHLY =D

Veggie & Black Bean Chili


Veggie & Black Bean Chili

This chili is so packed full of veggies, you will not miss the meat – I promise you!

I have been known to eat a bowl of this chili like it’s salsa with a bag of tortilla chips! Don’t judge – just try it!

There is a lot of chopping involved and a lot of spices to gather, so I like to do all of that ahead of time. I throw all the veggies in a big bowl. I measure the spices in a measuring cup. I open all the cans. Drain & rinse the beans. Set everything aside until ready to use. You could easily do all of the prep work a day or 2 in advance.

As far as the broth / beer goes. Use whatever you have on hand or prefer. I would start with 1 1/2 cups of broth ( or 1 bottle / can of beer ) and let it cook down a little. If it’s too thick, add more. You can even use broth and beer! Taste and adjust it to your liking.

Here are the fresh veggies that you’ll need:
1 large or 2 small Red Onions, chopped
1 Red Bell Pepper, seeded and chopped
1 Yellow Bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 or 2 Zucchini, depending on their size, quartered
( cut in half, then in half again) sliced thin
1 bag of Shredded Carrots –
( or grate your own – it will easily take 4-6 carrots )
16 oz Pre-sliced Button Mushrooms
( of course you can get whole mushrooms and slice them -or- quarter them if you want chunks! That is delish if you love mushrooms! )
4 Cloves of Garlic, minced

Here are the spices & seasonings you’ll need:
3 Tbsp Ground Chili
3 Tbsp Paprika
1 Tbsp + 1 tsp Ground Cumin
2 Tbsp Kosher Salt
1/2 tsp Onion Powder
2 tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 Tbsp Dried Oregano
1/2 tsp – 1 tsp Cayenne ( depending on heat preference )
2 tsp kosher salt
A few (like 12) good cranks of fresh cracked pepper
( or a tsp of black pepper )

By the way, you can make this seasoning ahead of time and store in a small mason jar and use it wherever you want chili / taco seasoning. It makes about 1/2 cup.

All Purpose Chili or Taco Seasoning.
All Purpose Chili or Taco Seasoning.

You’ll also need:
2 – 15 oz cans Fire Roasted Tomatoes
1 – 29 oz can Tomato Puree
2  – 15.5 oz cans of Black Beans, drained and rinsed
1.5 – 2 cups Vegetable -or- Chicken Broth ( or a Bottle of Beer )
3 – 4 Tbsp Olive or Veggie Oil
2 tsp Salt & 1/2 tsp pepper – for cooking veggies
Optional: 1 bag of frozen sweet white corn ( I use it, depending on my mood )

Garnish and/or serve with any of these options:
Sour cream
Shredded Cheese
Avocado sliced
Fresh Cilantro
Finely chopped Red Onion
Chopped Jalapeno
Rice, Quinoa or Orzo
Saltines or Oyster Crackers
Tortilla Chips
Corn Chips
Cornbread

This is what you’ll need to do:

1) In a large stock pot with a lid, drizzle in about 2 Tbsp oil then all of the chopped veggies. Toss in 2 tsp of kosher salt & a few good cranks on the pepper mill.

2) Sauté veggies over medium heat, stirring occasionally. You may need to add more oil if it feels dry. Keeping the lid on will help with the veggies sweat down faster. It could take up to 20 minutes.

3) When the veggies are tender/crisp, add in the fire roasted tomatoes, tomato puree, all of the chili seasonings. Stir & mix everything together.

4) Add in the broth ( or beer ) and the black beans – add corn if using. Thoroughly mix and let simmer over low heat for a good 30 minutes.

You’ll want to the lid partially covering to pot. This will allow the chili to cook down a little bit, but not too fast. It will also save your stovetop from splatters! You’ll also want to go in there and stir it to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pot!

5) After 30 minutes. Taste it, carefully it will be hot, and adjust it to your liking.

Make sure it’s at the thickness you want, too! Some like it thick & chunky. Some like it more soupy. If it’s too thick, add more liquid – if you want it thicker, let it cook down a little more with the lid off! If you want it even thicker, you could always add some masa flour to it. I would do a Tbsp at a time and give it some time to let it do it’s job! Just don’t use straight flour. Leftovers thicken up quite a bit, so keep that in mind as well.

6) Top each bowl with preferred garnishing. Serve with either cornbread or tortilla chips on the side. I usually have everything set out in bowls on the counter so each person can make it the way they want.

It freezes nicely. I just put any leftovers in a freezer safe Ziploc bag. Lay it down flat to store in freezer. When you want to have it again, just thaw in the fridge first. Pour it back into a pot and slowly reheat it.