Archive for Beans

Bean and Barley Soup

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One of my favorite soups of late is this Chicken and Barley Soup, and I CAN’T BELIEVE I HAVEN’T BLOGGED ABOUT IT! I have made this soup several times, and I love it. Note to self: Make that soup again soon!

Anyway, that soup was the first time I had ever had barley, and I instantly became obsessed. So when I came across this Bean and Barley Soup from One Dad’s Kitchen, it instantly caught my eye. Barley? Check. Meatless? Always a bonus. Delicious? As it turns out, YES!

This soup is so good and so filling. It’s the perfect soup for cold fall or winter days. I love that it’s inexpensive, too. It makes about 6 servings, and there is at least half a bag of beans left to use for another time.

Bean and Barley Soup
1 cup dried multi-bean mix, rinsed
1/2 cup pearl barley
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 medium carrots, roughly chopped
2 ribs celery, roughly chopped
1/2 medium onion, roughly chopped
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
2 tsp. Italian seasoning
black pepper, to taste
14 oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained

3 cups spinach leaves, chopped
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:
Place the beans, barley, garlic, carrots, celery, onions, bay leaf, kosher salt, Italian seasoning, pepper, and tomatoes into your crockpot. Add 6 cups of water and stir well.  Cook on low until the beans are tender and the soup is thick, about 8 hours.

At end of cook time, add the spinach and Parmesan cheese, and stir. Continue to cook on low until the spinach wilts, about 5 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and enjoy!

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Cream Cheese Chicken Chili

Source: Plain Chicken

So I know most people don’t eat chili in the summer, but I think for this one, you should make an exception. Bear with me …

I made this recipe for the first time during my Use Up the Ranch Dressing Mix Before It Expires Week (I didn’t succeed, by the way). I had saved it in my Google Reader, but wasn’t overly excited to try it. It looked good, of course, but nothing special.

Um. I hate saying this, but … I was wrong. This meal was very special. In fact, it was delicious. I actually thought about putting this on the menu again the following week, but I held myself back. That would be weird, after all.

But, I am counting down the time until it’s socially acceptable for me to make this again. And I will not be waiting until fall, that’s for sure.

Cream Cheese Chicken Chili
2 chicken breasts (1 to 1.5 lb.)
1 can black beans, drained
1 can corn, undrained
1 can tomatoes with chiles, undrained
1 package Ranch dressing mix
1 tsp. cumin
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. onion powder
8 oz. cream cheese (next time I will use less, maybe 4-6 oz.)

Directions:
Place the chicken at the bottom of your crockpot. Add the corn, tomatoes, and black beans on top. Top with seasonings and ranch mix, and stir to combine. Pace the cream cheese on top, but do not stir in.

Cook on low for 6-8 hours. At end of cook time, shred the chicken, and stir it and the cream cheese into the chili until mixed together. Enjoy!

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Pumpkin Chili

Ever since I saw this recipe on What’s Cooking, Chicago?, I have been so intrigued. Add to that the fact that I have been craving chili but waiting for the perfect chili weather, you can only imagine how antsy I was getting! I finally decided that today was the day — the weather isn’t quite perfect for chili, but I just couldn’t wait any longer.

Pumpkin chili
1 lb. ground turkey
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 cup onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans tomatoes, undrained
4 oz. can diced green chiles
1/2 cup frozen corn
2 cups (14.5 oz. can) pumpkin puree
1 1/2 tbsp. chili powder
1/2 tbsp. cumin
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper

Directions:
Brown ground turkey until cooked through. Add turkey to your crockpot, along with all the other ingredients. Stir well. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Serve with sour cream, cheese, cilantro, or whatever toppings you desire. Enjoy!

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Curried chickpeas and chicken

Source: $5 Dinners

Every now and then, I come across a recipe that is really different from what I normally make, but for whatever reason, it catches my eye and I can’t stop thinking about it! I know it’s going to be a gamble, because what if we don’t like it? But eventually, I always give in and make the dish, simply because I can’t get it out of my head.

This recipe recently popped up in my Google Reader, and it became one of those recipes. I’ve only ever had chickpeas in one other recipe, and I didn’t really like it. But on the other hand, I really love hummus, so … I wanted to try it! Couldn’t hurt, right? And besides, I recently bought some curry powder, so I needed to use that for something, too. Perfect!

This dish turned out to be really good, and very filling! While I won’t say it’s one of my favorite dishes, it’s a great alternative when I’m looking for something different from the norm.

Curried Chickpeas and Chicken
1 lb. dried chickpeas
2 cups chicken broth (next time, I’ll use 3)
8 oz. can tomato sauce (next time, I’ll use 2 cans)
1 tbsp. curry powder
2 chicken breasts, diced
Garlic salt
Pepper

Directions:
Place the dried chickpeas in your stoneware and soak overnight. Drain and rinse, then place them back in your crockpot. Add the broth, tomato sauce, and curry powder, and stir. Then add the chicken and stir to combine. Season with a few dashes of garlic salt and pepper. Cook on high for 4 hours.

Serve over white or brown rice, and enjoy!

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Black beans and rice

Source: $5 Dinners; and another version from A Year of Crockpotting

This was another easy meal where I already had all the ingredients in my pantry, which was an even better thing, since I’m trying to use up as much food as I can before we move in two weeks! I had two more “cans” worth of black beans in the freezer, so I was looking for a recipe to use them up. This was a great choice, because I was able to use up some stuff from my pantry without having to buy any supplementary ingredients.

Rick and I were both pleasantly surprised with how good this tasted. I was a little nervous that it would turn out bland and too mushy (and it was a little mushy), but the flavors meshed together nicely. We ate it as a burrito filling and added sour cream and a little cheddar cheese (although I don’t think the cheese was necessary). I’ll definitely make this again when I need to throw a meal together using pantry staples!

This is also a great budget meal. $5 Dinners is a great source for eating on a budget, but this is one of the most inexpensive meals I’ve noticed from her blog.


Black beans and rice

1 cup white or brown rice, uncooked
1 tbsp. olive oil
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 can tomatoes, undrained
1 tsp. cumin
salt and pepper, to taste
2 cups water

Directions:
Dump the rice in the bottom of the crockpot. Add olive oil, and stir to combine. Add the rest of the ingredients. Stir. The original recipe said if you are using white rice, cook on high for 4 hours; if using brown rice, cook on high for 6 hours. However, using white rice, mine was done at about 2.5 hours on high. Either way, brown rice will take longer to cook.

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Mexican Chili


Adapted from
Allrecipes.com

It’s wintertime, and that means snow snow snow. We seem to have gotten a lot more snow so far than I remember ever getting in recent years. (Can spring please hurry up and get here??!) When we’re snowed in, I always get cravings for a nice bowl of chili. It just sounds so cozy to me to have a big pot of chili simmering in the crockpot all day. So this dish definitely hit the spot during a recent Saturday snowstorm.

I decided to call this dish Mexican Chili because it has a lot of Mexican ingredients, but as it turns out, the flavors of the dish are not overly Mexican. This tastes like a traditional chili, but the combination of ingredients are great. It’s not too spicy, but there is a little bit of kick. If you like your chili spicier, you can control the heat by using medium or hot salsa and taco sauce. There are so many ways you can change this dish up a bit, you should definitely give it a try!


Mexican Chili:

1 lb. ground beef
1 cup chopped onion 
3 tbsp. chili powder
2 tsp. minced garlic
1 bay leaf
1 14.5 oz. can tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
1 15 oz. can Great Northern beans, drained
1 cup spaghetti sauce 
1 cup salsa
1/4 cup taco sauce

Directions:
Brown ground beef. Set aside to cool for a minute, then place in the bottom of your crockpot. Add the rest of the ingredients, and stir to combine. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours. Enjoy!

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Taco soup (take 2)

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This taco soup was this week’s recipe in the cooking club I’m in. As soon as I saw it, I realized how similar it was to the other taco soup recipe I’ve made a few times, but I figured the changes were significant enough to go ahead and try this version. I’m glad I did! Because there were fewer canned items in this soup, it tasted much meatier, which Rick liked, and the taco seasoning was more prevalent. We also both liked the addition of the black beans. I’m not sure which recipe is my favorite, but this version is definitely a keeper!

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Ingredients:

1 lb. ground beef
2 cans corn, undrained (I used 3 cups frozen corn, with 2/3 cup water)
1 can black beans, undrained
1 can great northern beans, undrained
1 can kidney beans, undrained
1 packet taco seasoning (or 1/4 cup)
1 packet ranch dressing mix

Directions:
Brown beef, drain fat if necessary. Combine all ingredients in the crockpot, and stir to combine. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Serve with sour cream, cheese or tortilla chips if desired. Enjoy!

Total cost of meal: $7.20. Serves 5.

Shared at Eat at Home Cooks.

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