Slow Cooker Meatballs and Marinara

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This Slow Cooker Meatballs and Marinara recipe takes some prep time but it is well worth the effort. A little bit of time is saved by using a microwave instead of the oven to firm up the meatballs before they go in the slow cooker.

This is a large recipe that would be great for a potluck or party. If you’re not feeding that many people you could easily cut the recipe in half.

Slow Cooker Meatballs and Marinara
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Slow Cooker
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • Onion Mixture Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium onions (finely chopped)
  • 1 can tomato paste (6 ounces)
  • 6 garlic cloves (crushed and minced)
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Ingredients for Marinara
  • ½ cup red wine
  • 2 cans crushed tomatoes (28 ounces each)
  • Ingredients for Meatballs
  • 4 ounces Italian sausage
  • 1 ¼ pounds lean ground beef
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 garlic cloves (crushed and minced)
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • To finish marinara
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. In a Dutch oven over medium heat mix together the onion, olive oil, tomato paste, garlic, oregano, red pepper flakes, and salt. Cook until onions are softened and slightly browned. Place half of the onion mixture in a large bowl and set aside.
  2. For the marinara add the wine to the onion mixture in the Dutch oven and cook until mixture starts to thicken. Mix in the crushed tomatoes and pour the mixture into the slow cooker.
  3. Add all the meatball ingredients into the large bowl with the onion mixture, and using your hands mix until well combined. Form into 12 – 2 inch meatballs and place them on a large plate. Microwave for about 7 minutes until meatballs firm up and start to render some fat.
  4. Work the meatballs into the marinara sauce and cook covered until meatballs are done and sauce is slightly thickened (4 – 5 hours on low). Let settle and skim off any fat that is on the surface. Mix in the remaining parmesan cheese – salt and pepper to taste and serve over spaghetti.

Slow Cooker Meatballs and Marinara recipe picture 2

Adapted from Cooks Country TV Show Cookbook

Teriyaki Chicken for Two

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This Teriyaki Chicken for Two recipe was adapted from Cooks Country Cooking for two cookbook. I found their procedure for crisping the chicken pretty unique. They weighted the chicken down by placing a large pot on top of the chicken weighted with 2 (14-15- ounce cans of whatever you may have on hand). The chicken browns evenly, and is nice and crisp.

This recipe is quick and simple to prepare and doesn’t require that many ingredients; my wife absolutely loved the sauce.

Teriyaki Chicken for Two
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Cooking for Two
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 4 bone-in chicken thighs
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon mirin
  • ¼ teaspoon ginger
  • 1 garlic clove (crushed and minced)
  • ¼ teaspoon cornstarch
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
Instructions
  1. Cover the bottom of a large sauce pan with aluminum foil using enough foil to bring the edges to the top to secure it. Place 2 cans 14 – 15 ounces each inside the pan for weight. (I lightly sprayed the bottom of the aluminum foil with cooking spray).
  2. Trim any excess skin and fat off the chicken and salt and pepper to taste. In a nonstick skillet using the oil over medium high heat place chicken in the skillet skin side down, and then place the weighted pan on top of the chicken. Cook for 10 minutes or until skin is nicely browned and crispy. Flip chicken and continue cooking until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 175F; remove from skillet and set aside on a plate and then remove any fat left in the skillet.
  3. While the chicken is cooking in a bowl whisk together the sugar, soy sauce, mirin, garlic, red pepper flakes, and cornstarch until thoroughly combined. Pour the mixture into the skillet and bring to a simmer and then place the chicken in the skillet skin side up. Cook until sauce thickens and turns glossy, and then turn the chicken in the sauce to evenly coat.
  4. Serve hot.

 

Classic Pork Ragu Recipe for Two

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This Classic Pork Ragu Recipe for Two is simple to put together and doesn’t require a lot of ingredients This is just a basic recipe and is easy to fancy up a little bit by adding additional ingredients like mushrooms and bell peppers; however it is good just the way it is written.

Classic Pork Ragu Recipe for Two
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 can tomatoes (28 ounces) drain and reserve ¼ cup of the juice
  • 16 ounces boneless country style ribs
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 large shallot (finely chopped)
  • 2 garlic cloves (crushed and minced)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons fresh rosemary (minced)
  • ½ cup dry red wine (I used cherry in this recipe)
  • 2 cups Ziti pasta (uncooked)
  • Grated Romano cheese
Instructions
  1. Pulse tomatoes in a food processor until coarsely chopped; set aside.
  2. In a large skillet over medium high heat using the oil brown the ribs on all sides; set aside on a plate. In the same skillet cook the shallots seasoned with ¼ teaspoon salt until softened. Add the garlic and rosemary and cook for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Stir in the wine, scrapping any dripping from off the bottom of the skillet. Continue cooking until wine is reduced to about half.
  3. Stir in the tomatoes with the reserved juice and work the pork ribs into the mixture, cover, and cook on simmer for about 1 ½ hours until pork can easily be separated with a fork. Remove pork to a plate and let cool slightly and then using a 2 forks separate into bite size pieces; stir the pork back into the sauce in the skillet; salt and pepper to taste and keep warm.
  4. About 15 minutes before the pork is done cook pasta according to package directions; drain and reserve ½ cup of the pasta water.
  5. Mix the pasta and sauce together adjusting the consistency if needed with the reserved pasta water. Serve garnished with the cheese.

pork ragu picture 2

Adapted from Cooks Country Cooking for Two

 

Slow Cooker Southern Style Chicken and Dirty Rice for Two

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If you’re cooking for two this is a great recipe to free up some time by using the slow cooker. There is only about 15 minutes of prep time and 4 – 5 hours of cooking time. It’s a great way to free up an afternoon, and because it’s a one dish recipe supper will be ready to serve.

Slow Cooker Southern Style Chicken and Dirty Rice for Two
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Cooking for Two
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 4 ounces of kielbasa sausage (cut into 1 inch pieces)
  • 1 small onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 red bell pepper (cleaned and cut into 1 inch pieces)
  • 2 garlic cloves (crushed and minced)
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 cooks cooked rice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 green onions (sliced thin)
Instructions
  1. Spray slow cooker on bottom and sides with cooking spray.
  2. In a medium size microwavable bowl mix together the kielbasa, onion, bell pepper, garlic, chili powder, and thyme. Microwave for 5 minutes stirring a couple of times while cooking; place in slow cooker.
  3. Add the rice and mix in ¼ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Season chicken with salt and pepper and add the thighs into the slow cooker mixture.
  4. Slow cook for 4 – 5 hours until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 185F. Remove chicken from the slow cooker and using 2 forks separate chicken into bite size pieces. Stir the chicken and green onions into the rice mixture, salt and pepper to taste and serve hot. Enjoy

 

Adapted from Cooking for Two Cookbook

Monte Cristo Sandwiches

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These Monte Cristo Sandwiches take grilled cheese sandwiches to the next level – absolutely delicious!!

These grilled cheese sandwiches are quick to make, making them great for lunch, or an after school supper; you can have them on the table with some fries in less than a half an hour.

Monte Cristo Sandwiches
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 6 Slices of White Sandwich Bread
  • 4 Slices of Deli Turkey
  • 4 Slices of Gouda
  • 1 Tbsp of Mayo
  • 1 tsp of Prepared Yellow Mustard
  • 3 Eggs
  • Milk - a little less than ¼ cup
  • Seasoned Salt to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon of Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons of Butter
Instructions
  1. in a small bowl mix together the mayo and mustard; aside.
  2. Monte Cristo Sandwiches prep1
  3. In a shallow wide bowl whisk together the eggs and milk – big enough to dip one side of the sandwich in.
  4. Monte Cristo Sandwiches prep 2
  5. Lay out three pieces of bread, spread a thin layer of the mayo on one piece and top with a slice of cheese and then a slice of turkey (I used several slices because I used thinly sliced). For the second piece of bread spread on a little more of the mayo mixture and top with another slice of turkey and place another slice of cheese on top and place the 3rd piece of bread on top of that to form the sandwich.(do not skip the last slice of cheese it is needed to hold the sandwich together when the cheese melts).
  6. Monte Cristo Sandwiches prep 3
  7. Monte Cristo Sandwiches prep 4
  8. In a nonstick skillet over medium high heat melt the butter along with the oil. Dip each side of the sandwich in the egg mixture like you are making french toast. Place in the skillet and cook until golden brown, flip, and continue cooking until nicely browned and cheese is melted.
  9. Monte Cristo Sandwiches prep 5

Adapted from Laura in the Kitchen

Pizza Spaghetti Bake

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This Pizza Spaghetti Bake recipe is quick and simple to put together and just requires a few ingredients.

Use your favorite spaghetti sauce and you can have supper on the table in less than an hour.

Pizza Spaghetti Bake
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 8 oz spaghetti
  • 3 eggs
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic (crushed and minced)
  • 2½ cups spaghetti sauce
  • 3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 package pepperoni (3.5 ounces sliced)
Instructions
  1. Cook spaghetti according to package directions; drain.
  2. Preheat oven to 375F.
  3. In the bottom of a large bowl whisk the eggs and milk together and then mix in the Parmesan cheese, garlic, and oregano and then mix in the cooked spaghetti.
  4. Spray a 13 x 9 casserole dish with cooking spray and pour the spaghetti mix into the casserole dish.
  5. Pour the spaghetti sauce over the top, and top with ½ of the pepperoni slices. Spread the mozzarella cheese evenly over the top and then top with the remaining pepperoni.
  6. Bake for 25 minutes or until cheese is melted and starts to brown.
  7. Let rest for 5 minutes and serve hot.

Adapted from

Pint sized treasures

Slow-Cooker Braised Steaks with Root Vegetables

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Spring is here and with a lot of yard work on today’s to do list I decided on this Slow-Cooker Braised Steaks with Root Vegetables recipe for supper to save some time during the day. This recipe is a delicious combination of sauce and vegetables and because it is done in the slow cooker the chuck steak is supper tender.

The next time you need to free up some time by using your slow cooker give this Slow-Cooker Braised Steaks with Root Vegetables recipe a try.

Slow-Cooker Braised Steaks with Root Vegetables
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Slow cooker
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 large onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 garlic cloves (crushed and minced)
  • 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ¾ cup beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons instant tapioca
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 chuck steaks ( about 6 ounces each ¾ to 1 inch thick – I cut large steaks into 4 serving size pieces)
  • 12 ounces potatoes (skin on cut into 1 inch cubes)
  • 4 medium carrots (cut into 1 inch pieces – if large cut them in half lengthwise.
  • 4 parsnips (peeled cut lengthwise and cut into 1 inch pieces
Instructions
  1. place onion, tomato paste, garlic, thyme, and oil in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for about 5 minutes stirring occasionally or until onions have softened; place in the bottom of the slow cooker. Stir in the beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, and tapioca.
  2. Season the steaks generously with salt and pepper and place them into the slow cooker kind of working them into the sauce.
  3. Loosely tie the vegetables into a cheese cloth bundle and place them on top of the steaks.
  4. Cook for 8 – 9 hours on low or 5 – 6 hours on high or until steak and vegetables are tender. Transfer vegetables to a large bowl and serve steak, sauce, and vegetables together.

Adapted from Cooks Country

Bacon Wrapped Pork Chops with Roasted Potatoes for Two

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This is a recipe for 2 but it could easily be doubled. This Bacon Wrapped Pork Chops recipe is simple and only requires a few ingredients; it’s delicious.

Bacon Wrapped Pork Chops with Roasted Potatoes for Two
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 12 ounces of small red potatoes (halved)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 6 slices of bacon
  • 2 boneless pork chops (¾ to 1 inch thick)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. In a large bowl generously season the potatoes with salt and pepper; toss in the olive oil to coat.
  3. Place potatoes cut side down in a rimmed baking sheet covered with aluminum foil – the potatoes should take up about ½ of the pan. Place on center rack of the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until just tender. (baking time could be a little longer depending on the size of the potatoes.)
  4. While potatoes are baking place the bacon on a large plate and weigh the bacon down using another plate – microwave for 3 minutes or until bacon starts to shrivel. (limp but not stiff) place bacon on paper towels to let cool.
  5. Wrap pork chops with 3 strips of bacon with ends down to secure the bacon.
  6. Remove the potatoes from the oven and place the pork chops on the other half of the sheet. Return to oven and bake until pork chops reach an internal temperature of 135F. (about 15 minutes depending on size)
  7. Preheat the broiler and place the pork and potatoes about 6 inches from the broiler element. Broil until bacon is browned and crispy and chops register 145F. Tent with aluminum foil and let rest 5 minute before serving.

 

Bacon Chicken Casserole

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The local market has deli chicken on sale so I decided to put this Bacon Chicken Casserole on the menu for supper.

This is a simple recipe that’s fairly quick to put together and doesn’t require a lot of prep time because the chicken is precooked.

If you have leftover chicken give this one a try it’s really good. Enjoy

Bacon Chicken Casserole
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 4 cups uncooked bow-tie pasta (8 ounces)
  • 1 box (9 oz) frozen baby sweet peas
  • 6 slices bacon
  • 1 large sweet onion (chopped about 1 cup)
  • 8 ounces package sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 2 cups shredded deli rotisserie chicken (from 2-lb chicken)
  • 2 jars Alfredo pasta sauce (15 oz each)
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions. During the last 3 minutes of cooking add the peas and cook until pasta is done; drain and set aside.
  3. In a large skillet cook bacon until crispy. Place on paper towels to drain, and then crumble; set aside.
  4. In the same skillet using the bacon drippings cook onion and mushrooms until tender. Add the mixture to the pasta and then mix in ½ cup Parmesan cheese, add the chicken and Alfredo sauce.
  5. Place the mixture in a 13 x 9 casserole dish lightly sprayed with cooking spray, top with the bacon and the other ½ cup of Parmesan cheese.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until bubbly and cheese starts to brown.

Adapted from Pillsbury.com

Classic Chili for Two Recipe

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This Classic Chili for Two Recipe is the perfect amount for two people and doesn’t require a lot of prep or cooking time. It is seasoned perfectly for my taste, that being just slightly on the hot side; but if you like it hot; you can turn up the heat by increasing the spices.

If you like chili and your cooking for two give this one a try.

Classic Chili for Two Recipe
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion (finely chopped)
  • ½ green or red bell pepper (cut into ½ inch pieces)
  • 1 ½ tablespoons chili powder
  • 3 garlic cloves (crushed and minced)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon coriander
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 12 ounces lean ground beef
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (14.5 ounces)
  • 1 can tomato sauce (8 ounces)
  • 1 can kidney beans (drained and rinsed)
Instructions
  1. in a large sauce pan using the oil over medium heat cook the onion, green pepper, and garlic seasoned with the cumin, coriander, red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, and ¼ teaspoon salt; cook until vegetables start to soften. (3 – 5 minutes) break the ground beef up inco the mixture and continue cooing until ground beef is no longer pink inside.
  2. Stir in the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and kidney beans, bring mixture to a simmer. Cover and cook for 45 minutes stirring occasionally. Remove lid and continue cooking until chili starts to thicken. (if chili is already thickened skip the last step – if chili starts to stick add ¼ cup water.
  3. Serve hot and enjoy.

 

 

classic chili for 2 recipe picture

Adapted from Cooking for Two Cookbook