Caprese Style Quinoa Bake

This was soooooo yummy.  Hubby and I like to eat meatless so this was actually great by itself for a meal, but it makes an awesome side dish as well for those who want a more rounded-out dinner.  The boys liked it, too, though they aren’t crazy about chunks of tomato.  A regular caprese uses fresh, delicious mozzarella, so by all means use it if you’ve got it.  However, I didn’t have any so I used goat cheese instead.  It was awesome!  This dish came out tasting like warm, comforting, creamy tomato soup with some chew.  Delicious.

caprese quinoa

Caprese Style Quinoa Bake

3 cups cooked quinoa

1 cup pasta sauce

2 T tomato paste

1/3 cup heavy cream

1/3 cup Parmesan cheese

1 cup Mozzarella (or 4 oz. goat cheese)

2/3 cup grape tomatoes, halved*

1/4 cup fresh basil, cut into ribbons

salt & pepper

1. Preheat oven to 350*. Cook the quinoa- 1 cup quinoa + 2 cups chicken broth.

2. In a saucepan heat up the pasta sauce and tomato paste. Once warm, stir in the cream, parmesan, salt & pepper, half the tomatoes, half the basil, and half the mozzarella or goat cheese. Stir until heated through and everything is melted and smooth. *I didn’t have grape tomatoes so I diced up a large one.

3. Spray a baking dish (I used a 4×7 but you can go up to an 8×8 or 9×9). Pour in quinoa mixture and top with remaining tomato and mozz/goat cheese.

4. Bake for 15 minutes, then broil for an additional 2 or 3, until cheese is gold and bubbly.

5. Remove from oven and top with the remaining basil ribbons.  Allow to sit for a few minutes before serving.

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Baked Oatmeal Casserole

If you are looking for a breakfast (or snack) that has protein, nutrients, fruits, nuts, fiber, and iron, and is quick, easy, satisfying, and filling, then look no further than here. Yes, seriously, this casserole is all those things and more.

I love this casserole because I can make it a night ahead and just serve up portions in the morning with a little zap in the microwave. You can eat it plain because it is moist and has so many flavors, or add a drop of pure honey or maple syrup over it. It’s a complete meal in itself and it’ll give you all the energy you need to take you through your busy mornings.

Another great thing about this casserole is that there are no rules for what you can put in it. I used what I had on hand, which was frozen blueberries and rhubarb, pecans, and bananas, but you could easily use strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, and walnuts. Whatever your heart desires.

baked oatmeal1

Baked Oatmeal Casserole

2 cups rolled oats

1/3 cup brown sugar, plus extra for topping

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup pecan or walnut pieces, divided

1 cup frozen berries, divided

1/4 – 1/2 cup frozen rhubarb pieces

1/2 cup chocolate chips, divided

1 banana, sliced

2 cups milk

1 large egg

3 T butter, melted

1 T vanilla

baked oatmeal2

1. Preheat oven to 375* and grease a 10×7 baking dish.

2. In a large bowl combine the oats, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, half the nuts, half the berries, the rhubarb, and half the chocolate. Mix well.

3. Lay this mixture out evenly in baking dish. Top with banana slices and remaining nuts berries, and chocolate.

4. Whisk together milk, egg, vanilla, and melted butter (make sure the butter sits a minute so it’s not too hot).

5. Pour over oatmeal mixture and gently shake the dish so the milk goes through the oats.

6. Sprinkle additional brown sugar over the top (maybe 1/8 cup) and bake for 35 minutes.

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Baked Tilapia with Mustard Lemon & Horseradish Sauce

This is really a very easy and delicious way to serve up dinner. We try to eat fish often, ideally two times  a week, and the same old recipes can get boring real fast. I served this with some roasted okra and Trader Joe’s Harvest Grains Blend.

The flavors in this are subtle so don’t be afraid of the horseradish or the mustard. In fact, I might even recommending amping up the measurements just a tad for a bolder flavor. However, made according to the recipe it was just right for Number Two’s more sensitive palate, and all the boys ate it up quick.

baked tilapia

Baked Tilapia with Mustard Lemon and Horseradish Sauce

4 tilapia fillets

2 T fresh chopped parsley, divided

1 T fresh lemon juice

2 tsp prepared horseradish

1 tsp dijon mustard

1/4 chicken broth

2 T butter, divided into 4 slices

zest from 1/2 lemon

1 tsp thyme

1 lemon, cut into 4 wedges

salt and pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400*. Lightly spray baking dish and salt and pepper fish on both sides. Place fish in single layer in dish.

2. In a small bowl put 1 T parsley, mustard, horseradish, chicken broth, thyme, and lemon juice. Whisk until combined then spoon over the fish, pouring it all in the baking dish.

3. Top each fillet with the 1/2 T slice of butter and bake for 20 minutes or so, basting once or twice, until fish flakes easily with a fork.

4. Sprinkle remaining parsley and lemon zest over the top and serve with lemon wedges.

5. Enjoy this delicious and healthy meal!

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Egg-Stuffed Baked Potatoes

This is great for any time of the day, and for a one-dish type of meal you can’t go wrong because you can put anything your heart desires in it. I only made six small potatoes, but it’s easy to see how to make the amount and size you want without measurements. It’s pretty much just whatever you have on hand or what you prefer. Think outside the box: chili, leftover taco meat, chicken, all kinds of vegetables, cheeses and herbs and spices (think dill!). There are no rules.

egg-stuf pots

Egg-Stuffed Baked Potatoes

6 small baking potatoes, baked and slightly cooled

4 strips turkey bacon, cooked and crumbled

6 eggs

1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar

1 T butter, melted

salt & pepper

1. Slice tops off the potatoes and scoop out potato pulp, leaving a layer of potato around sides and on bottom.

2. Brush butter inside potatoes and salt and pepper.

3. Evenly sprinkle 3 of the turkey bacon strips between the six potatoes and top with 1 T cheese.

4. Have potatoes on a baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper, and crack an egg over each potato. It’s okay if it spills over a bit. Sprinkle a bit more salt & pepper.

5. Bake at 375* for about 20 minutes or until whites are cooked and yolk is just set. It’s up to your preference how soft you like your yolk. Sprinkle with a little more cheese and the remaining bacon crumbles and give it just a few more minutes in the oven.

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Baked Potato Slices

Have you ever tried to make Hasselback potatoes and ended up with a bunch of potato slices? No?? Hmm…. Must just be me then.

I am sure some day when I have a little more patience I’ll be successful at the Hasselback, but this time I wasn’t. What I was successful at, however, was taking all those slices and making them pretty tasty.


Baked Potato Slices

2 baking potatoes, sliced thin

1/4 cup butter, melted

salt & pepper

Similar to the poaching method I used for my Poached Salmon and Sour Cream Dill Dressing, I stacked those slices on their edges as if it were a whole potato, poured melted butter in between the slices, and salted & peppered it before wrapping everything up in a foil pillow.

Bake at 400* for about 45 minutes. Serve with love 🙂 And don’t forget to put some of that sour cream & dill dressing on the potatoes. Fabulous!



GF French Toast with Caramel Apple Syrup

Remember my Baked Caramel Apples? Well, not only are they great with ice cream but they also go with french toast quite well. I used GF bread for this breakfast but you certainly can use any bread you’d like.


French Toast with Baked Apples

2 slices bread

1 egg

1 T butter

1 tsp sugar

1/2 cup baked caramel apples


Whip the egg and soak the bread in it. You should use up all the egg.

In a skillet, heat up the butter and sugar. Place the bread into the pan and let both sides fry up in the caramelized butter. Reheat your apples and use the caramel sauce from the apples as a syrup. Top the french toast with apples and caramel sauce and a bit of powdered sugar.

It’s that easy. Enjoy!



GF Baked Tacos

Number Two always gets excited when I make tacos. He loves them. This recipe was simple and quick, but I didn’t get a very good picture because it was already dark out and the dozen tacos I made were gobbled up in no time by all my boys.

This was a great twist on a classic. The hard shells are baked with the meat and cheese already inside, giving it a not hard but not soft outer layer. We had forks on hand for the messier ones, but some held together well even after loading up with lettuce, tomato, and salsa.


Gluten Free Baked Tacos

1 1/2 lbs ground turkey

1 can refried beans (or organic pinto beans, mashed)

8 oz. tomato sauce

1 pkg taco seasoning (or 1/4 cup)

1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar

12 taco shells

lettuce, tomato, sour cream, salsa, black beans, etc. for serving

1. Brown the meat. Drain off any fat if using beef.

2. Add refried beans, tomato sauce, and seasoning.

3. Spoon mixture into taco shells. Stuff cheese into shells over meat mixture.

4. Place filled shells into a 9×13 pan, standing up and sprinkle with any remaining cheese. *I didn’t do this. I laid them down on a cookie sheet, so one side was baked while the underside was greasy and heavenly. Your choice.

5. Bake at 400* for 10-12 minutes or until heated through.

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