Banana Bread

I mentioned yesterday that I have been trying to save a little money on my groceries lately. I was inspired by Crystal Paine of Money Saving Mom to go to the store and look for the clearance deals. I have been getting some great deals on meats, bread, yogurt, and milk. Yesterday morning I happened upon some clearance out bananas, and I decided that it would be really fun to make some banana bread.

I haven’t been able to bake in a while because I’ve been so busy. But I really enjoy baking, it’s one of my favorite things to do. There’s something fun about making something from scratch and feeding it to your family. I also occasionally try new things (and fail) and torture my family by making them eat them, so there’s also that.

When I got home from the store, I went looking for a recipe for banana bread. Over the years I have tried a lot of recipes for banana bread. Some of them have been awesome, especially the ones that contain cream cheese. Because cream cheese makes everything better. I found this recipe on the Kitchn. I have used many recipes from here before when I was making dinner or cooking something from scratch. The recipes on this site are always really reliable.

Something that I really liked about this recipe is that you were able to sub out some of the ingredients for more healthy options. I decided that instead of using white sugar that I would try to use my coconut sugar. It has  been sitting in my pantry for a while and I really needed to use it.

That was the only substitution that I made yesterday but I was thinking that you could also say about coconut oil for the butter if you wanted to. You could also use brown sugar instead of coconut or white sugar. I really think that the coconut sugar gave it a lot of flavor. I also didn’t completely mash my bananas so there are some chunks of banana in the bread. I personally think the big chunks make the bread even better .

Some ideas for using your banana bread :

Send it to lunch with your kids.

Have a slice for breakfast with your coffee or tea.

Use it as a dessert or serve it with ice cream.

Add some chocolate chips and make muffins for the kids breakfast or lunches.

Serve it as a side at dinner.

You can find the original recipe here.

Banana Bread

Banana Bread
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  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup Coconut sugar
  • A little bit of sugar to sprinkle on top
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 medium bananas, very ripe
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts or chocolate chips

  1. Arrange a rack in the bottom third of the oven and heat to 350°F. Line an 8x5-inch loafpan
  2. with parchment paper, letting the excess hang over the long sides to form a sling. Spray the inside with cooking spray.
  3. If using nuts, toast them in the oven for 10 minutes as the oven is pre-heating.
  4. Melt the butter in the microwave or you can substitute coconut oil.
  5. Combine the butter and sugar. Place the melted butter and sugar in a large bowl and whisk until combined. (You can also use a stand mixer)
  6. Add the eggs. Mix until completely combined and the mixture is smooth.
  7. Add the milk and vanilla, mix in.
  8. Mash in the bananas. Peel the bananas and add them to the bowl. Using the end of the whisk or a dinner fork, mash them into the batter. Leave the bananas as chunky or as smooth as you prefer. If you prefer an entirely smooth banana bread, mash the bananas.
  9. Fold in the nuts or chocolate, if using.
  10. Scatter the nuts or chocolate over the batter and gently fold them in. separately until no more lumps remain, and then whisk them into the batter.
  11. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 50-60 minutes.

Yield: 8
https://www.leslieslittlecorner.com/banana-bread/

Enjoy!!

One Pan Enchilada Casserole

A few weeks ago, I had done my meal planning, and had bought all the ingredients for my Enchilada Casserole recipe. The night that I was supposed to make it, I was completely exhausted, but didn’t really want to order a pizza.

So, as I like to do sometimes, I made up something new. Thankfully, it worked and it was just as good as it is the other way. My favorite part about cooking it this way is that I only get one pan dirty, and I am not doing dishes all night. (Have I mentioned how much I hate doing dishes?)

Here is the new version of the recipe:

One Pan Enchilada Casserole

One Pan Enchilada Casserole
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  • 1 bag of yellow or white corn tortillas
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 16 oz. can enchilada sauce
  • 1 lb browned ground beef or shredded chicken
  • 1 8oz bag shredded cheese such as Jack, Colby Jack, Mexican Blend, or Cheddar
  • Sour Cream, Avocado Slices, Guacamole, etc.

  1. On medium high heat, brown the ground beef. (or just add your cooked shredded chicken)
  2. Turn your burner down to low.
  3. Add the black beans
  4. Pour in the enchilada sauce
  5. Cut all of the tortillas into 1/2 inch thick strips.
  6. Stir all of the tortilla strips into the mixture.
  7. Add about 1/2 cup of cheese and stir until melted.
  8. It is that easy!!

Yield: 6
https://www.leslieslittlecorner.com/one-pan-enchilada-casserole/

 

Tell me what you think of my lazy creation! I would love to have your feedback!

*This post contains affiliate links, please see my disclosure policy here.*

Whats for Breakfast ? Baked French Toast

One of my kids favorite meals is when we have dinner for breakfast. 

I love breakfast foods, but I am not a big breakfast eater, so breakfast for dinner is perfect for me! The only problem is that when you make eggs, bacon, hash browns and biscuits, you wind up with a bunch of dirty dishes. So I really wanted to try something a little less messy.

One thing that we all love is French toast, and a few years ago I found some recipes for Baked French Toast. I am really bad about finding recipes and then losing them, so I made up one of my own. It is always a hit at our house! The only complaint I get is that I didn’t make enough.

This is a great meal to have your kids help with. 

My daughter helped me make it last night and really enjoyed it. This is also a one pan dinner, which makes it even more of a breeze.

Kate loves to help me cook!

Here is my recipe:

Baked French Toast

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  • 1 loaf Texas Toast
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • Cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 stick butter
  • Cooking Spray

  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. Spray the bottom of a 13 x 9 pan.
  3. Melt the stick of butter and mix it with the brown sugar.
  4. Pour the mixture on the bottom of the pan. Spread.
  5. Layer the Texas Toast (about 6 pieces) in the pan.
  6. Sprinkle cinnamon on top of the bread.
  7. Then, put another 6 slices to make a new layer.
  8. Sprinkle cinnamon on top.
  9. Beat eggs and milk together, then pour over the bread as evenly as you can.
  10. If the mixture pools, you can take a butter knife to spread it across.
  11. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
  12. (You can also make this ahead and refrigerate overnight to cook in the morning.)

Yield: 6
https://www.leslieslittlecorner.com/baked-french-toast/

 

Serve with bacon or sausage.  Enjoy!

 

*This post contains an affiliate link, you can read my disclosure policy here.*

St. Patrick’s Day!

 

(Note: The links in this post are affiliate links, and I will be compensated when you make a purchase by clicking through my links. Read my disclosure policy here.)

Every year, I make a big St. Patrick’s Day meal. No, I am not Irish, I am also not Jewish, but that does not stop me from making a Hanukkah meal every year either. I really don’t know why,but maybe I just like themed meals. What I do know is that I love corned beef, but it is a bit pricey, so I don’t buy it very often! But right around St. Patrick’s Day, it is always on sale, so a while back I decided I was going to try cooking my own.

I went to the store and found the corned beef, cabbage and potatoes. As an added bonus, Publix carries Kerrygold Garlic and Herb butter.(which is Irish butter, if you didn’t know) I grabbed some of that and some Pepperidge Farm Pumpernickel bread. I wasn’t entirely sure how to cook corned beef, but from my experience those larger cuts of meat are ALWAYS better cooked slowly. So, I started searching the internet for Crock Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage recipes.

I found this one and it was very simple.  Here is the link to the original recipe Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage

 

Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage

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  • 4 large carrots, peeled and cut into matchstick pieces (I don't use carrots, however if you do don't waste your time cutting carrots into matchstick pieces, just buy them cut that way)
  • 10 baby red potatoes, quartered
  • 1 onion, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 (4 pound) corned beef brisket with spice packet
  • 6 ounces beer
  • 1/2 head cabbage, coarsely chopped

  1. Directions
  2. Place the carrots, potatoes, and onion into the bottom of a slow cooker, pour in the water, and place the brisket on top of the vegetables.
  3. Pour the beer over the brisket.
  4. Sprinkle on the spices from the packet, cover, and set the cooker on High.
  5. Cook the brisket for about 8 hours.
  6. An hour before serving, stir in the cabbage and cook for 1 more hour.

Yield: 6
https://www.leslieslittlecorner.com/st-patricks-day/

For the bread, toast it in a toaster and spread the butter on. Oh my goodness, it is so, so good! Don’t skip this part, you will love it!

So as you can see from above this is not a last minute kind of meal, you need to plan ahead and get this going in the morning. But lucky for you, St. Patrick’s Day is on Saturday this year! Have you ever made a St. Patrick’s Day meal before? If you decide to try it out this year, leave a comment and let me know how it goes!

 

Crock Pot Roast

This roast is one of my favorite, easy crock pot meals. The meat comes out so tender and  the veggies melt in your mouth. It is also great served with homemade Buttermilk Biscuits. (Or you can grab the frozen ones, which are good too)

 

Crock Pot Roast

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  • 1 bag red potatoes (or white or
  • yellow or sweet)
  • 1 bag baby carrots
  • 1 pot roast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp 21 season mix (if you have, if not you should find some!)

  1. Cut onion in fourths and put in the bottom of crock pot.
  2. Pour Carrot bag in.
  3. Cut potatoes in half or fourths depending on how large they are. Add to crock pot.
  4. Sprinkle Half the Seasonings on the Veggies and stir to mix.
  5. Add the pot roast to the crock pot and pour in the broth.
  6. Then sprinkle the rest of the seasonings on the roast and rub in.
  7. Turn the crock pot on it's lowest setting and cook all day.

Yield: 6
https://www.leslieslittlecorner.com/crock-pot-roast/

You will love walking in your house after work, knowing that you don’t have to cook tonight! It’s already done, and your whole house will smell delicious!

 

 

 

 

Ahi Tuna Tacos

 

The other day in my Sprouts post, I mentioned that they had Ahi Tuna on sale this week. I also promised to buy and try it out and post the recipe. Well here it is!!

A few years ago, Josh and I went out on a date to an adult theater. No, not that kind of theater! Shame on you!! It was a 21 and up movie theater with a full bar and offered dinner while watching your movie. It was awesome, and they really should open one here in Nashville. Anyway, I decided to try the Ahi Tuna Tacos. At that point in my life the only tuna I knew about was canned tuna. So you can imagine my surprise when my tacos come out with this huge red thing inside them. I thought it was a tomato! Seriously! Well it wasn’t a tomato, it was the tuna. And it was so good!

Since then, I have tried many delicious fish tacos(and some not so delicious), but none have quite lived up to that first one. So I stepped out of my cooking comfort zone last night, and made my own version. I don’t mean to brag, but they were awesome. Josh loved them, and even Kate tried (and liked) the tuna. The tuna was also so easy to cook, I don’t really know what I was worried about.

First I cut the tuna into about 8 pieces. I had about a pound of the tuna.

 

 Then, I sprinkled salt and Mexican Seasoning on all sides of the fish. Then I cooked it in melted butter and olive oil for about 1 1/2 minutes on each side. (That will be rare and the middle will still be a reddish pink, it’s ok!)
Next, I made my homemade pico/salsa.

 

Then, I used a little chipotle salad mix for the slaw, and added about a teaspoon of apple cider vinager to it.

Finally I warmed the tortillas in the oven at 350 for about 3-5 minutes.

I layered the fish, pico, and cabbage mix. Then I drizzled a little Marie’s Chipotle Ranch over that.

Then I sprinkled a little cheese on top. I forgot to grab one, but Avocado would have been an awesome addition!

Here is the recipe:

Ahi Tuna Tacos

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  • 1 bag white corn tortillas
  • 1 lb Ahi Tuna
  • 1 carton cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 sweet onion
  • 1/4 - 1/3 cup cilantro
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1 small bowl of cabbage slaw or a salad with cabbage
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Marie's Creamy Chipotle Ranch
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Mexican Seasoning Mix (or you could mix a little cumin and chili powder)
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 tbsp Butter

  1. Preheat your oven to 350.
  2. Melt the butter and warm olive oil over low heat in a skillet.
  3. Meanwhile in a food processor, first pulse the onion a couple of times, then add the cilantro and pulse again.
  4. Finally pour in the carton of tomatoes and turn food processor on until everything is finely chopped. Stir.
  5. Pour in the lime juice.
  6. Salt and Pepper to taste. Set aside.
  7. Mix about a (cereal bowl) of the slaw mixture with the apple cider vinegar. Set aside.
  8. Coat the fish in a little salt and Mexican Seasoning Mix.
  9. Cook in skillet on medium-high heat for about 1 1/2 minutes per side.
  10. Put your tortillas on a cookie sheet and warm in oven for about 3-5 minutes.
  11. Finally layer fish, pico, slaw mix, chipotle ranch, cheese, and optional Avocado or Jalapenos.

https://www.leslieslittlecorner.com/ahi-tuna-tacos/

Easy and Delicious Sausage and Egg Muffins

So what can you do with those eggs that you got on sale this week? Here is one of my tried and true recipes!

I found this recipe a long time ago and modified it to fit my family.

It has always been a big hit in my house and my son (with Autism who is extremely picky) has been known to eat them from time to time. I usually make these for dinner, but you could also make them if you are having a brunch. Or freeze them. Or have them for lunch!

 

Sausage and Egg Muffins

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  • 1lb Breakfast Sausage
  • 1 cup brocolli florets
  • 8 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Italian Blend Shredded Cheese

  1. Preheat Oven to 375.
  2. Brown the sausage.
  3. Add in the broccoli and cook for about 3-4 minutes.
  4. Wisk eggs, milk, oil, and baking powder in a mixing bowl.
  5. Spray a 12 cup [muffin tin|https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002CXKBKM/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=leslieslitt06-20&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=B002CXKBKM&linkId=3cc3d021c488204648399e56fcd63785| with oil.
  6. Using an ice cream scoop (or another spoon) fill each muffin cup with the sausage mix.
  7. Then carefully pour the egg mix over each cup.
  8. *You will need less of the egg mixture than you think, so pour slowly! *
  9. Sprinkle cheese over each muffin.
  10. Bake for 13-15 minutes, depending on your oven.

Yield: 5
https://www.leslieslittlecorner.com/sausage-and-egg-muffins/

Pair with Asparagus, Hashbrowns, Bacon, etc. Enjoy!

Need a new muffin tin to make your egg muffins? Evenwave 12 Cup Muffin Pan – $6.99 Shipped!

You can also try my Easy Fried Pork Chops and Eggs or Ham and Cheese Quiche !

 

Crockpot Refried Beans

When my husband and I started dating, I was introduced to “real” refried beans. My poor husband suffered through lots of cans of refried beans until I started cooking them in the Crock-Pot . No matter how hard I tried, I could not ever get my dried beans to cook. It was maddening. So when I found out that you could actually cook dried beans in the Crock-Pot , I was excited to give it a try. I wanted mine to taste as close to the way my mother in law’s tasted as possible.

So, I tried several things until I came up with a recipe that I liked. All you need is a Crock-Pot and a Potato Masher . Here is the final product:

 

Crockpot Refried Beans

Crockpot Refried Beans
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  • 1 lb bag Pinto Beans
  • 8 cups of water
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2-3 slices American Cheese

  1. Rinse and sort your beans.
  2. Do not worry about soaking your beans!! Pour them into the crockpot and cover with the water.
  3. Cook on low all day.(or about 6 -8 hrs).
  4. About 30 minutes before you are ready to start mashing them, you will add all the spices to give them time to give the beans a good flavor. (Don't put the spices in earlier, because you will wind up having to put more in later).
  5. After 30 minutes turn off the crock pot and put in the sliced cheese.
  6. Take a potato masher and mash the beans until there are almost no whole beans left.

https://www.leslieslittlecorner.com/crockpot-refried-beans/

 

These beans are so easy and so yummy! Use them for tacos, bean burritos or my Taco Cups which I will share with you later!

 

Easy and Kid Friendly Lasagna

My kids really love all things spaghetti, pizza, and lasagna. I don’t make Lasagna often, because it can be time consuming. And I am mostly tired by the time it is time to cook. However, this is a pretty easy recipe that can be made ahead of time and doubled, with one of the two being frozen.

It’s great because the kids don’t complain, and they always come back for seconds. 
I only use Bertolli Organic Sauce, because it is my personal favorite. I don’t really like sweet spaghetti sauces, I like mine a little salty and with garlic. This is the best one I have found. 
As far as the noodles, you can use oven ready if you want to make a really quick and easy Lasagna. However, I don’t reccomend making this in advance or freezing it, because it is just not good. 
I found this out the hard way when I tried a new rustic cut sauce and the oven ready noodles. I froze it and baked it to make my life easier. The sauce was terrible (rustic cut means chunks of carrots in your sauce, um no.) and the noodles were just soggy. So.. lesson learned. 
If you are freezing USE THE REGULAR LASAGNA NOODLES!! Just follow the directions on the box. After you drain the noodles rinse with cold water to keep them from sticking together. I pat mine dry with a paper towel as I layer. 
Layer a 13 x 9 pan with the noodles.

Then put your sauce and ground beef on.

Next, dollop on your cottage cheese/egg mixture. No need to try to spread it. It all works out while it is baking.
Finally, sprinkle a little cheese on that layer. Repeat. 
When you have about 4 – 5 layers or the pan is full, then put on a thick layer of cheese to top. 
Now, cover with foil and bake!
Easy Lasagna
1 jar Bertolli Organic Olive Oil, Basil, and Garlic Spaghetti Sauce
1 box lasagna noodles
1 16 oz cottage cheese
1 egg
1 bag Italian Blend Cheese
1 lb cooked ground beef
Preheat oven to 350. Prepare noodles according to box. Mix the egg into the cottage cheese. (I do it in the cottage cheese container to minimize dirty dishes) Layer noodles, sauce, meat, cottage cheese mix and cheese. Repeat until pan is full. Put a thick layer of Italian chees on top. Cover with foil. Bake for 30 minutes.
Serve with salad and garlic bread.
Enjoy!

Thanksgiving Recipes

I am compiling different Turkey and Sides Recipes for Thanksgiving here. What are your favorite sides? Mine are Green Bean Casserole and Pineapple Casserole!

Turkey Recipes:

Roasted Thanksgiving Turkey

Roasted Butter Herb Turkey

Deep Fried Turkey

Juicy Thanksgiving Turkey

Side Dishes:

Green Bean Casserole

Pineapple Casserole 

Cornbread Dressing

Old Fashioned Stuffing

Sweet Potato Casserole – I’m going to say skip the coconut, but that’s just me!

Corn Bread Pudding

Bacon Balsamic Brussels Sprouts – one of my favorites!

Desserts:

Pumpkin Pie

Pecan Pie

Deep Dish Apple Pie

Pumpkin Roll