Southwestern  Chicken and Rice Soup

Looking for a spicy soup to warm your soul? I took some of my leftover Southwestern Chicken And Rice Stuffed Peppers and turned it into soup. I didn’t think anything of it. To be honest, I didn’t think I would share the recipe. After a few bites, I knew I had too. And then when my husband, Jon, proclaimed that this was the best soup I’ve ever made I knew I had to share it. He liked the soup better than the actual stuffed peppers its self.

Southwestern  Chicken and Rice Soup using leftover stuffed peppers!

Talk about the best way to repurpose one meal and make it into something totally different! If you arent’ a fan of stuffed peppers you don’t need to make the stuffed peppers. You can still make the soup. Just head on over to get the recipe for Southwestern Chicken And Rice Stuffed Peppers. Place all of that into the stock pot first (chop up the peppers  of course) and then add in the broth and julianne zucchini and squash. You will also of course want to add a little olive oil to the pan before you begin to saute the bell pepper. And maybe cook your soup a little longer than just 15 minutes with the leftover variety. Either way… I think you’ll LOVE this recipe. This Southwestern Chicken And Rice Soup is hearty and flavorful and will keep you warm this winter. Oh and in case you actually have any leftover and don’t feel like eating it again, pour the cooled off soup into a freezer bag and freeze it for another day!

Katie Original Recipe

Southwestern Chicken And Rice Soup

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 6

Southwestern Chicken And Rice Soup

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Cut the leftover Southwestern Chicken & Rice Stuffed Peppers into bite size pieces. Add them to a large stock pot with 32 ounces of chicken broth and julianne zucchini. Mix well and bring to a boil then simmer for 15 minutes.
  2. Serve and top with fresh cilantro.
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Use up your leftover mashed potatoes and make this decadent and creamy mashed potato soup!

So the leftovers are dwindling? You have random bits and pieces of your holiday dinner scattered throughout your refrigerator? Did you make one, too many potatoes this year? All you need is 3 cups of leftover mashed potatoes to make the most decadent mashed potato soup I’ve ever tasted. I mean this soup is rich, creamy, and full of flavor with only a few ingredients!

My goal after the holidays is to use up and re-purpose all my leftovers. I love to transform them into brand new meals so that everyone isn’t tired of eating a ham dinner for the 15th time in just 3 days. I made over 10 lbs of potatoes for Thanksgiving for just 8 people. That meant that everyone had to eat over a pound of mashed potatoes and we would still have leftovers. The day after any holiday (when I have leftover mashed potatoes) I always make my easy potato pancakes. But then after that if I have any leftover I’m always confused as to what else to make. I did try my friend Joanne’s recipe for Crispy Mashed Potato Mounds which were out of this world delicious. But even after that I still had about 3 cups of leftover mashed potatoes. That is when the thoughts of baked potato soup crossed my mind. Well I should say, Mashed Potato Soup. All I needed were some green onions and bacon to top off the soup and I think I would have been in heaven! With or without the bacon this recipe for Mashed Potato Soup was out of this world delicious! Go ahead, give it a try and use up the last of your leftover mashed potatoes!

Katie Original Recipe

Mashed Potato Soup

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 4

Mashed Potato Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 small onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3 cups leftover mashed potatoes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • dried parsley and shredded cheddar cheese for garnish

Directions

  1. In a soup pot melt butter on medium heat, then add in onion. Cook until golden brown (almost caramelized for 10 minutes).
  2. Once the onions are golden in color add the all-purpose flour and mix well until the onions have been coated with the flour mixture. Add the whole milk and stir for one minute.
  3. Then add in the mashed potatoes. Mixing until all the potatoes have broken up. Cook on medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes or until potatoes are smooth. Taste the soup and add salt and black pepper if desired.
  4. Ladle into bowls and top with dried parsley, shredded cheddar cheese, and cracked black pepper. Enjoy!
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Turkey & Stuffing Dumpling Soup

 

Do you struggle to use up your leftovers after the holidays? Over the next few days I’ll be sharing 3 recipes that will help you do just that–use up those leftovers and transform them into something amazing! Today, I’m sharing with you an easy recipe to make Turkey & Stuffing Dumpling Soup. If you had Turkey for Christmas and remembered to save the prized carcass you are in luck! Oh and of course have some leftover stuffing to go along with it. You might be thinking… 90 minutes? I have to be in the kitchen that long? No, not really–your water just needs to boil down to create a flavorful turkey stock. I started making this at 10 am after breakfast and by lunch time we had a comforting lunch waiting for us. Plus, who doesn’t love the smell of turkey soup simmering on the stove top? Turkey & Stuffing Dumpling Soup via KatiesCucina.com

I just did a rough chop to my veggies and let them boil down with the turkey carcass. They absorbed all the turkey flavors, which were deliciuos. The dumplings aren’t your traditional dumplings. Some will fall apart others will remain whole. This isn’t a pretty meal, but its delicious and at the end of the day that is what counts by my standards. When I made this everyone in our home was asking for seconds. I had to fend them off from the last two bowls (pictured above) so I could photograph the recipe. So if you made a turkey this holiday season and still have that carcass give my recipe for Turkey & Stuffing Dumpling Soup a try.

Katie Original Recipe

Turkey & Stuffing Dumpling Soup

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 75 minutes

Total Time: 90 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

Turkey & Stuffing Dumpling Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 turkey carcass (7lb breast)
  • 12 cups water
  • 1 onion, peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 2 cups leftover cooked turkey, chopped
  • For the dumplings:
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 2 eggs 2 cups leftover stuffing
  • 1 tbsp chives, minced + extra for garnish

Directions

  1. In a large soup pot, boil 1 (7lb) turkey carcass with 12 cups of water, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, fresh parsley, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then cook on medium heat for 1 hour. Remove turkey carcass from the soup pot, skim to make sure no bones are left behind. Remove the bunch of parsley from the pot as well and discard.
  2. To the stock pot add in 2 cups of cooked leftover turkey. Reduce heat to low.
  3. While the turkey is cooking with the stock and vegetables make the dumplings. Combine flour, stuffing, two eggs beaten, and chives. Mix well until all the ingredients are blended well together. The dumplings will be sticky--it's ok. That is normal. Make small golf ball like size balls and begin to carefully drop the dumplings into the soup pot. Repeat until you've used half the batter. Wash your hands, and carefully stir the soup. Raise the temperature up to medium heat and then proceed to finish dropping in the remainder of the stuffing dumpling mixture. Cook for 10 minutes and then ladle soup into bowls. Top with additional chives if desired.
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Pulled Pork Nachos from KatiesCucina.com

I hope everyone had a wonderful Labor Day weekend (for those in the United States). I know I did–I unplugged for 3 nights and 4 days. Let me just tell you–it does a body good to unplug every now and then. My husband and I went up to Northwest Florida to go scalloping. Although, the scallops forgot to show up to our party. Yep, not one scallop to be found.  It is late in the season and with an abundance of rain–they have been washed out to sea. So instead we had a relaxing and lounging weekend on the boat hanging out at the sand bar with our friends! We also ate lots of food. What do you do when you have tons of leftovers? Make pulled pork nachos! Duh!

Pulled Pork Nachos from KatiesCucina.com

These nachos are the ultimate way to use up all your leftovers in the refrigerator. Plus you’ll have a super simple meal in no time and everyone will not even recognize that this was dinner just the other day! At least that is what happened in my home. This happened to be a tasty lunch for us earlier this summer after I had made my slow cooker pulled pork recipe. I just started grabbing all sorts of leftover and concocted the most delicious tasting nachos ever. Whether you eat these for dinner, an afternoon snack or maybe even lunch–whatever the meal it be your going to love using up your leftovers to make the most delicious tasting pulled pork nachos, ever. I can guarantee that!


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 Fire-Roasted Tomato & Spicy Italian Sausage Pasta Bake from KatiesCucina.com

I love a meal where I can use up leftovers. Transform them into something new. That is exactly what this recipe is today. Back in January, I shared how to make Spicy Italian Sausage Subs with Fire-Roasted Tomato Sauce in the Slow Cooker. Super simple meal that allows your slow cooker to do all the work for you. Then a few weeks later I showed you how to Roast Red Bell Peppers. Well, I don’t know about you but when I have lots of leftovers I like to transform them. And thus this beautiful Fire-Roasted Tomato & Spicy Italian Sausage Pasta Bake came to life.

Not only did I utilize some of the leftovers I had on hand, but I used a few more pantry staples include Dreamfields Pasta, some fresh herbs from my garden, and cheese in the refrigerator. After boiling up my pasta, I toss all the ingredients together and voila a beautiful pasta bake ready in less than an hour. Typically, most pasta bakes are loaded with cheese. This pasta bake just so happened to not be loaded with cheese. I chose to place a few dollops of ricotta in the bake. Every now and then we don’t need our pasta loaded with cheese, right? Ok, maybe I’m wrong, but I loved it just the way I made it. If you love cheese feel free to load it up! Either way–its a great way to use up leftovers!

Katie Original Recipe

Fire-Roasted Tomato & Spicy Italian Sausage Pasta Bake

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 4-6

Fire-Roasted Tomato & Spicy Italian Sausage Pasta Bake

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray a large casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray. Then add in pasta, chopped roasted red bell peppers, spicy Italian sausage, and sauce. Toss well them add 8 dollops (tablespoons) of ricotta, sprinkle with caramelized onions and grated cheese.
  3. Bake for 30 minutes or until the inside of the pasta is hot and the cheese is melted.
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Disclaimer: I received pasta from Dreamfields pasta; however, I was not compensated nor required to write about them. This is a brand I buy on a regular basis and enjoy eating. As always, all opinions are my own. 


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Chicken Fajita Casserole

I think there are two types of people in life. Those who embrace leftovers and those who hate them. We embrace them in my house. I try not to let any food go to waste, although it does happen on occasion, but not as often as some households throw out food. I love to transform my leftovers into something magical — into a brand new meal! Chicken Fajita Casserole

So if you are a part of the waste no food club, I dare you to head over to Food Fanatic. It is a new website that I’ll be contributing to twice a month. Every food blogger on the site will be writing about a particular niche. Mine just happens to be one-pot meals. So get ready to see leftovers transformed, crock pot recipes, and skillet sensations from yours truly!

What are you waiting for? Head on over to Food Fanatic to get the full recipe for Chicken Fajita Casserole: One Pot, Many Flavors.


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Turkey Pesto Pasta

I don’t know about you but when I make a big holiday meal I want to stretch the leftovers as far as possible. This means transforming leftovers and re-inventing them so your family and friends don’t get tired of eating essentially the same foods over and over again! A few weeks ago I co-hosted a holiday open house with Julie from The Little Kitchen. We invited food bloggers from Central Florida to celebrate the holiday. Since we were having the get-together at my house I decided that I would roast a turkey breast. We had more than enough and of course it left me with an abundance of leftovers!  Since I’m not one to waste for the next few days I cooked up a wide variety of dishes that utilized the leftover turkey. First up, I made this Turkey Pesto Pasta.

Turkey Pesto Pasta

I used Dreamfields Pasta which I adore because it has twice the amount of fiber of regular pasta. Making this a healthier pasta dish than the traditional. I also incorporated a few vegetables such as peas and spinach and utilized some roasted sun-dried tomatoes to kick up the flavor profile. I typically always have pesto frozen in my freezer, so I just took out a half cup portion to cook in the dish. I made this meal in less than 30 minutes and no one realized they were eating leftover turkey!

Katie Original Recipe

Turkey Pesto Pasta

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 6

Ingredients

  • 1/2 box of Dreamfields Spaghetti Pasta
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp salted butter
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup frozen pesto
  • 1/4 cup smoked sun-dried tomatoes
  • 2 cups shredded turkey
  • 1 cup spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 cup parmesan, shredded
  • 1 cup reserved pasta water
  • Optional: fresh basil and more parmesan cheese for garnish

Directions

  1. Cook Dreamfields Spaghetti according to package. Cook it 2 minutes less than required. Make sure to RESERVE 1 cup of pasta water before draining. Once cooked, set to the side until needed.
  2. In a large skillet heat olive oil, butter, and garlic on medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Then add frozen peas, frozen pesto (*If your pesto is fresh add it towards the end when you are adding the pasta to the dish), and sun-dried tomatoes. Cook for 5 minutes until pesto and peas are defrosted.
  3. Then add 2 cups turkey to the skillet as well as 1/2 cup of reserved pasta water. Stir until incorporated then add pasta and parmesan cheese. Mix well and if needed add the remaining pasta water to the skillet. Serve pasta and garnish with additional parmesan cheese and fresh basil.

Notes

Katie Original Recipe. Copyright 2012 KatiesCucina.com

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Disclaimer: I was not asked or compensated to create this recipe from Dreamfields. I simply love their pasta! 


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Turkey Tetrazzini

I don’t know about you, but I’m sure starting to get tired of eating multiple Thanksgiving dinners. Don’t get me wrong–I’m plenty grateful that I have the opportunity to eat just one, but when its days after and we are still eating the same meal I’m in need of a change. I love transforming my leftovers into something new! This pasta dish will do this and then some. 


*Don’t fret… if you don’t have leftover turkey available, bake some skinless, boneless turkey breast and use that in replace of leftover turkey. 


Source: Every Day with Rachael Ray, October 2011
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4


Ingredients:
1 cup pappardelle
3/4 lb skinless, boneless turkey breast, cut into chunks
salt and pepper to taste
6 tbsp butter
8 oz white mushrooms, sliced
1 tbsp thyme, chopped
3 tbsp flour
2 cups milk
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 cup frozen peas and carrots


Directions: 
1. Preheat the oven to 400°. Grease a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Cook the pasta according to package directions until just barely al dente; drain.


2. Meanwhile, season the turkey with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat 1 tbsp. butter over medium-high heat. Add the turkey and cook until browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl


3. Add 2 tbsp. butter to the skillet. Add the mushrooms and thyme; season with salt and pepper. Cook until the mushrooms start to soften, about 3 minutes. Transfer to the bowl with the turkey. 


4. Melt the remaining 3 tbsp. butter in the skillet. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in the milk and broth and bring to a boil, then simmer for 2 to 3 minutes to thicken. Stir in ½ cup parmesan and the peas and carrots. Season with salt and pepper.


5. Add the pasta and turkey-mushroom mixture to the sauce and toss well to combine. Transfer the pasta mixture to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with the remaining ½ cup parmesan. Bake until the top is golden-brown and the sauce is bubbling, 12 to 15 minutes (shorten the baking time by at least 5 minutes if you’re planning on freezing this for later).


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I made this awesome spinach dip for my Tombstone Pizza Halloween Open House a few months ago. No matter what time of year it is this is a great dip to make. The best part is that I use leftover creamed spinach and within minutes what was once your leftovers is now the main star of the show!
Source: Katie Original!
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes

Serves: 8-12

Ingredients 

  • 2 cups leftover creamed spinach 
  • 1 cup chopped artichoke hearts (drained)
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese (plus extra to sprinkle on top)
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
Directions: 


1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degree’s. While oven is preheating microwave leftover creamed spinach until warm. 


2. Once the creamed spinach is warm add the chopped artichoke hearts, mozzarella, and parmesan cheese. Mix well and add salt and pepper to taste. Place in a well greased pan. Top with remaining parmesan cheese. 


3. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately with tortilla chips and vegetables!


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Apple Fingers

Ok, here is another way to use leftovers. After I made the amazing Individual Taco Pie’s I saw that I had a egg wash and some pie crust scraps, leftover. Me being the savvy person, I could not bare to throw either of the items away, so I started thinking about what I could make for dessert. I decided to throw some apple slices in a cinnamon-sugar mixture and then coat the apple slices with the pie crust, and roll again! I served them with a vanilla bean ice cream and it was delicious! Mini apple pies or as I would like to call them apple fingers!

Source: Katie Original
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • Leftover pie dough
  • Leftover egg wash
  • 1 apple (6 slices, peeled)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • Vanilla ice cream
Directions: 


1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degree’s. 

2. In a shallow bowl add cinnamon and sugar and mix well. Toss apple slices in mixture, then start wrapping the apples in the leftover pieces of pie crust. 
3. Roll apple’s stuffed in pie crust in the left over cinnamon-sugar mixture, then brush egg wash on top. 
4. Bake for 20 minutes or until the “fingers” are golden brown. Serve with vanilla ice cream. 

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