BBQ Chicken Pizza

The other night Billie Jean and Prudence found an opossum in our backyard. Yes it was still alive, and yes my dogs attacked it. It was terrifying…. Being from AZ I have never seen an opossum before, and obviously neither has our dogs. They just wanted to be best friends with this little creature…and by best friends; I mean the poor opossum’s worst nightmare. They barked at it, they bit it and jumped on it and just scared the begeebes out of it. When it was two dogs against one opossum, they poor little opossum had little chance of escape; they had the poor thing cornered. Jesse and I heard them going crazy in our backyard so we headed to the back door and Jesse yells “It’s an opossum!!!!!” We both flip out because we don’t want out neighbors to be mad at our crazy, loud, obnoxious dogs, but we didn’t want to go out there and set foot anywhere near the opossum, so we were in quite a pickle. Unfortunately yelling at the dogs to get inside didn’t work, sticking our heads barley out the back door and yelling for them to come get a treat or go for a car ride didn’t work, and spraying them with the squirt bottle from 10 feet away defiantly didn’t work….I was soooo close to just manning up and going out there to get the dogs, when all of a sudden, a miracle from God was granted on us! 😉  The opossum was able to escape under the fence into our neighbor’s yard!!! YES!!! I don’t think I have ever been more relieved in my life haha…sad right!? I was just so happy to get them back inside and lock them in so they could NEVER go outside again, ok maybe not ever, but at least for the rest of the night. (They kept standing at the back door and whining all night long.) After about 5 mins had past I started thinking about how weird opossums look, and it made me think how lucky I was that it wasn’t a raccoon. Then my train of thought went to RABIES (I’m pretty sure raccoons get rabies)!! Ah!!! Did my four-legged children somehow contract rabies from this crazy wild animal? I began touching them all over their bodies to see if I could find any sore spots or bite marks (all they wanted was for me to leave them alone so they could go back outside) but luckily I found none. To be safe I goggled rabies in opossums in Seattle and the results completely calmed me down. Opossums don’t get rabies. YAYAYA!! 

So after that crazy event that seemed like it would never end, Jesse and I were able to sit down and enjoy the delicious PIZZA I made for dinner J J I love pizza way to much!! I made a BBQ chicken pizza. It is so easy, so delicious, and one of my very favorite type of pizza now. If you are in a pinch and just need something quick to throw in the oven I recommend this delicious dinner. Try it out, let me know what you think.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Roll of refrigerated pizza dough
  • 1 chicken breast, cut up into bit size pieces
  • Some diced up green peppers
  • Some diced up onion
  • A good helping of any BBQ sauce you prefer
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Pinch of Oregano
  • Pinch of salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a well-oiled frying pan, place your diced up chicken, sprinkled with salt and pepper and onion on medium high heat. Cook until the chicken is completely done and there is no more pink showing.
  3. On a baking dish roll out your pizza.
  4. Spread as much BBQ sauce as you like all over the pizza. Leave a little uncovered by BBQ for the “crust” of your pizza.
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  6. Then, sprinkle your pizza with your oregano, place your green peppers all over the pizza and once your chicken and onions are done, spread those all over the pizza as well.
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  8. Then cover everything with a nice helping of shredded cheese.
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  10. Cook in the oven for about 15-20 mins until the crust is done.

Enjoy!

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Cheesy Bacon Pasta

I had a great weekend, thanks to my wonderful husband! He planned a super delightful Saturday to celebrate my birthday. This whole week/weekend was pretty much a birthday celebration starting with Wednesday when my boss took my co-workers and I out to enjoy some Indian food for lunch. Then Thursday, my actual birthday, my coworker brought in 2 dozen fall themed donuts for everyone to share to celebrate my birthday and Thursday night my wonderful community group made me feel like a very special birthday girl by cooking me some tasty burgers, Jesse made amazing guacamole, and someone from group made me a delicious carrot cake. Talk about one satisfied, full birthday girl! 🙂 I was also able to relax, and enjoy the company of my friends at group and had a very happy birthday. Saturday Jesse took me on a birthday date starting at this very tiny, super cute Italian restaurant in Pioneer Square. We had a four course meal that ended with the best tiramisu!! The plate had the Seattle skyline drawn on it, see…. 

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       (Yeah I’m pretty excited in this picture because I am about to gobble down that tiramisu!! )

 Then after we stuffed ourselves completely full, we took a “spooked in Seattle” tour. We walked all around Pioneer square learning about all the haunted places! It was so fun, my husband is so creative with his birthday celebrations! I love it!!

Luckily for you, I did make dinner on Friday night and boy was it just the most freakin delicious pasta dish ever! Man, I will probably make this dish again next month because it was so good. Not to brag on myself or anything, but really, you must try this dinner recipe out, let me know what you think. I call it Cheesy Bacon pasta. What is cool about this dish is you can really add in anything extra you like, like maybe a veggie, and it still will be fabulous!!

Ingredients:

  • ½ lb. of pasta noodles, I used penne
  • 1 can of condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 3 strips of bacon
  • 1 chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces
  • ½ C plain Greek yogurt
  • 1- ½ TBS ranch dressing packet mix
  • Dash of garlic powder
  • Salt/pepper
  • Shredded Cheese, I used fiesta mix

Directions:

  1. Cook your pasta noodles according to the packaged directions. And preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place your bacon strips on a baking dish and pop into the 350 degree oven for about 10 mins, or until nice and cooked. Brake up these strips of bacon into bite sized pieces and set aside.
  3. In a well-oiled frying pan, place your cut up chicken on medium high heat. Sprinkle with your garlic powder, salt and pepper and let cook until done and no more pink is showing.
  4. Once your pasta noodles are done, strain them and place them back in the same pot. Mix in your cream of chicken, Greek yogurt, bacon pieces, cooked chicken and your ranch packet mix.
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  6. Place your noodles into a casserole dish and sprinkle the top with a nice liberal amount of your shredded cheese! YUM!
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  8. Then, place in the 350 degree oven for about 15-20mins, until the cheese is nice and melty!

ENJOY!

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BBQ Chicken wrapped in Bacon with Apples

This weekend Jesse and I were on the go all weekend. Luckily I made a crockpot meal for dinner so I never had to stop to make dinner, which ended up making things go a lot smoother. (Technically I had to throw things in a crock pot, but that doesnt really count because it takes no time to do that.)  On Saturday morning we went to a pumpkin patch and picked our own pumpkins. They also had a few different areas with a fire pit and a toasty, warm fire brewing in it. After Jesse and I took, what seemed a long while, to pick our pumpkins (I mean, we wanted to find the perfect ones 😉 we were able to sit by one of the fire pits and enjoy a picnic lunch. After we watched pumpkins being sling shot by tons of little kids, we packed our pumpkins in the car and headed home. When we got home I threw dinner in the crockpot and got ready for the symphony that we were going to that night. I haven’t been to the symphony before but both Jesse and I were in band in high school so we were really looking forward to the performance. We both got all dolled up and headed to Renton to listen and watch the Rainer symphony preform. It really was beautiful. I loved trying to spot ALL the different instruments the orchestra was made up of. It was a very romantic sweet evening. On Sunday, Jesse and I painted our pumpkins. They look like this:

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They are currently sitting on our doorstep for all the trick-or-treaters we will hopefully be getting in a few short days.  I love Halloween!

But enough about my weekend, how about I tell you about another yummy fall themed dinner we ate right before the symphony. I call it BBQ Chicken wrapped in bacon with apples. Everything in the title is all the ingredients you will need for this dish, unless of course you want to add seasoning, then there are just a few more ingredients. But it can’t get any simpler and tastier then this dish. Try it out and let me know what you think!

Ingredients:

  • 2 Chicken breasts
  • 4 strips of bacon
  • 1 apple, diced up into bit sized pieces
  • ½ C BBQ sauce (or more if you like)
  • 1 TBS lemon juice
  • Salt/pepper
  • Dash of garlic powder
  • Dash of parsley

Directions:

  1. Spray your crock pot with any non-stick cooking spray, to coat it so your chicken won’t stick to it.
  2. Wrap your two chickens in bacon! I used two slices for each chicken breast, but hey, if you are a bacoaholic use more!!
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  4. Place the two chicken breasts into your crock pot, and pour your bbq sauce all over it. Sprinkle the chicken with all the seasonings and lemon juice.
  5. Throw your diced up apples on top of you BBQ sauce and set the lid on the crock pot. Any setting will do for this dish. If you are starting it in the morning, put it on low for 8 hours, if you can’t get to it until the afternoon, set it on high for 4-6 hours. As long as your chicken is cooked all the way through before serving.

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Enjoy!

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Sausage and Zucchini Pizza

If you love pizza, and let’s get serious, who doesn’t like pizza….then the dinner I made last night is sure to be on your dinner menu next week! I made a Zucchini and Sausage pizza. It’s a delightfully healthy alternative to your regular Papa John’s or Domino’s pizza and you are guaranteed to have dinner on your table in about 30 mins! You can’t beat that right?! Healthy, fast, refreshing, easy and ooooo so tasty!

I actually got this recipe from a lady I took a cooking class with. It wasn’t a fancy cooking class or anything, just a simple lecture based class at my local library, and it was FREE! The class was about making dinner healthier, and swapping out not so healthy ingredients in meals for better ones. It was a really fun class and I definitely learned a lot of helpful ideas. Both of the teachers were registered dieticians and you could tell, both of them loved to talk about food ha! When I heard the teacher give out this recipe for pizza, I was all over it, and knew I would be making this pizza for dinner regularly. Try it out; let me know what you think!

 Ingredients:

  • 1 pastry puff, usually found in the freezer section in the grocery store
  • 2 sweet Italian sausage links
  • 1 Zucchini, diced
  • 3 TBS Dijon mustard
  •  Salt/pepper

Directions:

  1. Set out your pastry puff and let thaw, once thawed, set on a baking dish and poke some holes in it with a fork.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
  3. Peel off the outer skin on your sausage links so they are easy to crumble up. Cook the sausage crumbles in a well-oiled frying pan on medium heat.
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  5. Once the sausage is cooked all the way through, remove from the pan and set on a paper towel to drain the excess grease.
  6. In the same frying pan, place ¼ C water and the diced up zucchinis. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and let cook on medium heat for about 4-5 mins.
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  8. While your zucchinis are cooking, spread your 3 TBS of Dijon all over your pastry crust. This will be your sauce, so if you would like to add more mustard then I say, go right ahead!
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  10. Once your zucchinis are done, place them on a paper towel to get rid of any excess liquid. Then spread them all over your pastry crust, along with your sausage.
  11. Pop in the oven for about 20-25 mins.

Enjoy!

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Apple Chicken Curry

All the leaves are changing beautiful colors now. I stare out the window on my bus ride to work because I’m just in awe of all the colors. It’s cool to see some trees have not completely lost their green color, so they have green, and yellow leaves mixed together. Some trees are the brightest red I have ever seen and some trees are mixed with red, yellow and orange. Fall is wonderful for many reasons that I have already mentioned, BUT I have recently discovered that fall is all about one of my very favorite fruits! Apples!!  Fall is when apples are in season. Jesse and I have a thing for picking free fruit wherever we can. Last weekend we went around our neighborhood and tried to spot all the apple trees we could pick fruit off of. Since I had a bunch of apples, I cooked a yummy dinner with one of them, I made Apple Chicken Curry. Yeah, it seems a bit weird, but the apples and curry are a great combination.  Serve it over some jasmine rice and you have one tasty fall meal. Try it out, let me know what you think!

Ingredients:

  • 1 Chicken breast, cut up into bite sized pieces
  • 1 Apple, cut up into pieces (I used Fuji, but any would be fine)
  • ½ C green bell pepper, chopped
  • ½ Yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 TBS butter
  • 3 TBS Flour
  • ½ C chicken broth
  • ½ C Milk
  • 3 TBS Yellow Curry powder (feel free to add more to your liking)
  • Salt/pepper
  • Jasmine rice to serve on top of

Directions:

  1. Place your cut up chicken and onion in a well-oiled frying pan on medium heat. Season with salt and pepper. Once the chicken is cooked, add the green bell pepper and diced up apple. Set on low heat and let cook for about 5-8 mins until the bell peppers are soft.
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  3. Once your chicken, onion, bell peppers and apples are finished, remove from frying pan. In the empty frying pan, add your butter on medium heat and let it melt. Once melted, add in your flour and stir really well together so there are no more flour chunks.
  4. Once the flour and butter are well incorporated, add in your ½ C chicken broth, stirring constantly, then slowly add in your milk. Mix everything together well and let thicken up. Stir occasionally.
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  6. Once thick, add back to the frying pan your chicken, onion, bell pepper and apple mixture. Mix in your yellow curry powder (add more if you like). Once everything is back to nice and warm serve over some jasmine rice!

Enjoy!!

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins with a Cinnamon Streusel Topping

As I sit here at work, surfing the internet, waiting for my meeting to start, I am happy! Do you want to know why?! Well there are lots of reasons to be happy this morning 🙂 God sure has blessed me in more ways than I can count! But to just name a few, the beautiful changing colors outside my window, my wonderful husband and family who support me and are always there for me, my puppies, my community group and church, my health, my friends, and particularly at this moment, my Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins with cinnamon streusel. Yeah, you head that right! I smile inside every time I take a bite of one of these delicious muffins. They make my mornings so happy, maybe that’s just the foodie in me, but I can’t think of a better breakfast to start off my day. I feel so lucky to actually enjoy the art of baking, it’s not everyone’s forte you know. Every Sunday after church, I look forward to baking treats that Jesse and I get to enjoy during the week. I only pray that when children come along someday, I will still have the energy and time to bake.  😉

I know you want to start your day off with a warm cup of coffee (after all, it is starting to get cold outside)  and one of my Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins with a Cinnamon Streusel  topping so lucky for you, I am going to share this recipe with you! Hopefully they make you as happy as they make me! 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 C all-purpose flour
  • ½ C sugar
  • ¼ C brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. Baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 C pumpkin puree
  • 1/3 C plain Greek Yogurt
  • ¼ C unsalted butter, melted
  • ¼ C applesauce (I used cinnamon applesauce for a little extra cinnamon flavor)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Chocolate chips

For the Cinnamon Streusel Topping

  • 1 ¼ C all-purpose flour
  • ½ C brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ C sugar
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ C unsalted butter, melted

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly coat a standard muffin tin with nonstick spray.
  2. To make the cinnamon streusel, combine the flour, sugars, and spices. Then pour your melted butter all over mixing in really well until you get a nice crumble going on. Set aside.
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  4. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and powder and salt.
  5. In another large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, yogurt, butter, applesauce, egg and vanilla.
  6. Pour your dry ingredients over your wet ingredients and mix together, don’t over mix, just until everything is incorporated. Add in a handful of chocolate chips and mix those in too.
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  8. Spoon the batter into your muffin pan. Each cup should be about ½ – ¾ full, depending on how large you would like you muffins.
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  10. Sprinkle the tops with your cinnamon streusel and lightly press the crumbs into the batter.
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  12. Place in the oven for ~ 18-20 mins.
  13. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 10 mins before removing from the muffin tin. For me this made 16 muffins, plus 8 mini muffins.

Enjoy!!

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Twice Baked Potato Soup

This month I am going to try to post only fall themed breakfasts, lunches and dinners.  I think it’s a great way to get you to enjoy this beautiful time of year! Last night’s dinner was no exception; it was the perfect fall themed dinner, so warm, so tasty, so fall ha!

This weekend was a great weekend because Jesse and I were able to spend lots of time together doing so many wonderful fun things. It started out on Thursday actually because this last Thursday was my turn to make dinner for our community group. I had a blast watching everyone enjoy one of the Johnson’s household staples. Some people at community group had Tator Tot casserole before, but some people hadn’t, so it was a delight to see everyone enjoying something I made for them. 🙂 Friday, we went out to this southern food place for dinner (which was tasty tasty) and Jesse and I received free tickets from my work to go to the Josh Groban concert. Jesse and I have heard some of his stuff before, but his concert was really entertaining and we both had a freakin blast!! We sat pretty much right up next to the stage, the music was amazing (he had his own orchestra with him,) he sang amazing, and he had Judith Hill, both Jesse and I’s favorite contest from The Voice last season (she has previously sang with Michael Jackson) as an opening act for him. It really was a fun filled night. Saturday Jesse and I went picking apples and pears on trees around our neighborhood and watched some movies. Sunday was also fabulous because we went to church and then I spent the rest of the afternoon baking and cooking yummy things for the hubby and I to enjoy for the week. I really didn’t want the weekend to end, but unfortunately it did, but now I’m excitedly waiting for the next weekend already. (Ah my birthday is fastly approaching, I can’t wait!)

I made Twice Baked Potato Soup for dinner last night. It was perfect because you throw stuff into the crockpot and you can get all the rest of your baking done for the week and not have to worry about dinner, or at least that’s what I did. 😉 Like I said, this meal is perfect for fall and I highly recommend you try it out and let me know what you think!

Ingredients:

  • 3 Russet potatoes, peeled and sliced into big chunks
  • 2 ½ -3 C Chicken Broth (depending on how liquidy you want your soup)
  • 1/4 C butter
  • 1 TBS garlic powder
  • Salt/pepper
  • 2-3 C Milk (again, depending on how liquidy you want your soup)
  • 1 Chicken breast
  • 2 C Broccoli Florets
  • 2 strips of bacon, cooked and torn up into pieces
  • ~ ¼ C Green onions (depending on how much you like green onions)
  • ~ 2 C Shredded Cheese (any kind will work, and add as much cheese as you like)
  • 1 C Plain Greek Yogurt

Directions:

  1. Place your diced up potatoes into a crockpot. On top of the potatoes, sprinkle your garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Throw in your butter and pour your chicken broth all over the potatoes.  Place the lid on the crockpot and let it cook on high for ~3-4 hours.
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  3. Once your potatoes have been cooking for about ~3-4 hrs, start cooking your bacon. Also dice up your chicken breast into bite sized pieces and cook in an oiled frying pan on medium-high heat until cooked all the way through, season with salt, pepper, and a little more garlic powder.
  4. Once your bacon is cooked and torn into pieces and your chicken is cooked all the way through, take a potato masher and mash your potatoes in your crock pot until they are nice and chunky. (If you like smooth soup, mash your potatoes until there are no chunks.) Then throw in your chicken, bacon, broccoli, milk, cheese and green onions. Feel free to season the soup some more with the salt, pepper, and garlic if you like.
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  6. Then stir everything together and let cook until nice and hot, about 20-30 mins.
  7. Right before serving, throw your Greek yogurt into the crockpot and mix up really well. Stir for about 3-5 mins so the soup can get the Greek yogurt warm.
  8. Serve with a little more cheese on top and enjoy!

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