Paleo Honey Mustard Dressing

This homemade paleo honey mustard dressing was a surprise for me. One taste and it quickly became one of my favorites. It's also kid friendly.By contributing writer Tessa

This paleo honey mustard dressing was a surprise for me. I never really liked honey mustard dressing growing up, but one taste of this homemade version and it quickly became one of my favorites. It’s also kid friendly, and you might even have your kids willingly eating a salad!

I have been making my own salad dressings for some time. The quality of ingredients can’t be beat because I choose the oils and use no weird seasoning enhancers or stabilizers.

But most importantly, the flavors are SO much better! And the price can’t be beat either. In just a couple of minutes, you can have a delicious dressing that you’ll be eager to use and eat!

I believe using homemade mayo really sets this dressing apart, and it takes less than five minutes to make your own. Try it. We have become total mayo snobs in this household because of this recipe. Even my kids will refuse the store bought stuff now!

And while you can use this dressing in any way you see fit, my favorite salad for enjoying this dressing includes mixed greens topped with hard boiled eggs, cubed Dubliner cheese (or other sharp cheese), and mini bell peppers…yum!

This homemade paleo honey mustard dressing was a surprise for me. One taste and it quickly became one of my favorites. It's also kid friendly.

Paleo Honey Mustard Dressing
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup good quality mayo (I use homemade mayo)
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons mustard
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder or 1 tablespoon raw onion (finely minced or grated if you are not blending)
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and whir briefly to blend thoroughly.
  2. Alternately, you can place all ingredients in a mason jar, use an immersion blender or place the lid on, and shake vigorously until the honey dissolves and blends in.
Notes
I use my own homemade mayo, which is KEY is my humble opinion!

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Cheesy Tater Tot Casserole

If you're feeding a large family or a small army, this delicious Cheesy Tater Tot Casserole is sure to please Even your meat-and-potatoes hubby will love it!By contributing writer Beth

If you’re feeding a large family or a small army, this delicious Cheesy Tater Tot Casserole is sure to please Even your meat-and-potatoes hubby will love it!

I’m sure you’ve seen those casseroles made with “cream of” soup, but this casserole is completely different. Aside from the tater tots, it’s all from scratch and homemade – yum!

You can make this dish with a variety of ground meat. I used pork and beef for a deliciously moist texture. Chicken and turkey would be a great lower fat alternative. If you’re going the reduced fat route, you could also use skim milk instead of whole milk. I would caution against using reduced fat cheese. It just doesn’t melt right for it to work in this combination.

I used a regular 9 x 13 inch casserole dish. You can use a larger pan if you’re worried about it bubbling over. I didn’t have that problem, but your experience may vary and nobody likes to have to clean the oven after a mess.

If you're feeding a large family or a small army, this delicious Cheesy Tater Tot Casserole is sure to please Even your meat-and-potatoes hubby will love it!

Cheesy Tater Tot Casserole
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • 2½ pounds ground meat (beef, pork, chicken, or turkey)
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2½ teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground paprika
  • 1½ teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon ground dry mustard
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2½ cups whole milk
  • 16 ounces shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 20-ounce package of frozen tater tots
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 425° F.and spray a 9 x 13 inch pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a large pan, brown the ground meat over medium heat until thoroughly cooked. Crumble the meat as you cook it so it is in small pieces when it's done. Do not drain the meat.
  3. Add the garlic, salt, pepper, paprika, onion powder, thyme, and mustard. Stir to completely combine.
  4. Stir in the butter and Worcestershire sauce. Continue to cook over medium heat. Stir to melt the butter completely.
  5. Sprinkle the flour over the meat and stir in. Cook for 1 minute over medium heat.
  6. Stir in the milk slowly and bring back to a very low simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 1 minute.
  7. Stir in half the cheese. Blend until melted.
  8. Pour the meat mixture into the prepared casserole pan, and sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top. Arrange the tater tots over the top of the cheese.
  9. Bake at 425 degrees for 21 - 25 minutes until mixture is bubbly and tater tots are light golden brown.

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Cheeseburger Pasta

There's nothing better on a busy weeknight than dinner on the table in 30 minutes. That's what makes this Cheeseburger Pasta dish the perfect supper for your hungry family.By contributing writer Beth

There’s nothing better on a busy weeknight than dinner on the table in 30 minutes. That’s what makes this Cheeseburger Pasta dish the perfect supper for your hungry family.

This recipe was inspired by my family’s love for macaroni and cheese. Yes, sometimes we make it from those blue boxes, but mostly I make it from scratch. Adding ground beef takes it from a side dish to a main dish.

You can add more garlic, ground mustard, or even toss in a tiny touch of horseradish to the cheese sauce to make it have a little more complex flavor.

It’s so much fun to put out the condiments on the table when I serve dinner. You can put out:

  • Mustard
  • Ketchup
  • Barbeque Sauce
  • Thousand Island Dressing
  • Diced Tomatoes
  • Pickles
  • Lettuce
  • Bacon
  • Avocado
  • Hot Sauce
  • and even MORE Cheese!

Throw on anything that you’d put on a cheeseburger.

This dish can be thrown together in a flash. Make the most of your time by putting on the water to boil first. Then start browning your ground beef. This overlap in cooking will shave off minutes from your meal prep time. I can get this meal on the table in less than half an hour.

Note: I recommend a sharp cheddar cheese for the shredded cheese in the sauce. For our test version, we tried a three cheese blend that included cream cheese shreds. It was delicious and creamy and perfectly smooth!

There's nothing better on a busy weeknight than dinner on the table in 30 minutes. That's what makes this Cheeseburger Pasta dish the perfect supper for your hungry family.

Cheeseburger Pasta
Recipe type: Main Dish
Serves: 8
 
Macaroni and cheese with a delicious twist! Your kids will adore this fast and easy meal.
Ingredients
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • ½ onion, diced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • 16 ounces shredded cheddar cheese (sharp recommended)
  • 12 ounces pasta, uncooked
Instructions
  1. Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil and cook the pasta according to package directions.
  2. While the pasta is being prepared, brown the ground beef along with the onion, salt, pepper, and garlic.
  3. When the beef is completely cooked do not drain the grease. Stir in the flour to coat the beef. Cook for 2 minutes over medium heat.
  4. Slowly whisk in the milk and bring to a low simmer over medium low heat. Do not boil.
  5. When the milk mixture is beginning to bubble gently, stir in the cheese. Stir until all the cheese is melted. Turn off the heat.
  6. When the pasta is finished cooking, drain and place back into the pot it cooked in.
  7. Stir the cheese sauce into the pasta and serve with mustard and ketchup drizzle and chopped tomatoes.

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10 Must-Have Items for Freezer Cooking Success

Freezer cooking is one of the best ways to save time and money on your grocery bill. You'll want to stock your kitchen with these 10 must-have items for freezer cooking success.

Do you fix freezer meals for your family? Freezer cooking is one of the best ways to save both time and money on your grocery bill each month. It keeps you from eating out less, it saves you from making too many impulse purchases, and it helps you to feed your family nutritious meals without stressing about what you’re having for dinner.

If you’re new to freezer cooking, you might be wondering what you need to do to get started. Take a deep breath, because learning the basics of freezer cooking really isn’t as hard as it may seem. The first thing you’ll need to do is stock your kitchen with these 10 must-have items for freezer cooking success.

1. Freezer Cooking Planner

Freezer cooking is a huge undertaking, and if you jump right in without a plan, you’re very likely going to end up with wasted food. With so many free printable freezer cooking planners available on the web, you can jump in with a well thought out plan. Planning right means that you’ll be successful in your freezer cooking attempts from the very first time.

2. Freezer Cooking Recipes

Contrary to popular belief, not every recipe is able to be frozen. Make sure that when you pick the recipes you’ll be making for dinner that you are paying attention. For some, you’ll be able to freeze the entire thing after cooking. For others, you may need to add ingredients to a bag and freeze those together with cooking instructions only.

6 Easy Freezer Meals

We have a few freezer cooking recipes and resources here:

3. Slow Cooker

If you don’t already have a slow cooker, pick one up before you begin freezer cooking. Having at least one slow cooker makes cooking meat and other ingredients in bulk a snap.

4. Ziploc Bags

Freezer meals that contain pasta and other firm ingredients freeze incredibly well in freezer bags. You’ll want to pick up a few boxes in both the quart and gallon sizes so that you are able to freeze smaller and larger portions.

Freezer cooking is one of the best ways to save time and money on your grocery bill. You'll want to stock your kitchen with these 10 must-have items for freezer cooking success.

5. Hands-Free Freezer Bag Holders

They might look funny, but these freezer bag holders will make your freezer cooking journey so much easier. They stand up and hold your freezer bags open and upright so that there is no fighting to keep them open.

6. Foil Baking Pans with Lids

When you’re baking casseroles, you won’t want to put your glass or metal baking dishes in the freezer. Instead, buy foil baking pans with lids so that you aren’t risking glass cracking or metal rusting. You can write re-heating instructions on the lid. If you’re worried about the cost, the baking pans are sturdy enough to be washed out at least once, if you’re careful. The lids can’t be re-used but a simple piece of foil will work as a great replacement.

7. Sharpie

Regular ink pens won’t work on most freezer bags or foil pans. Instead, you’ll need a Sharpie to write directions. Stick with a darker color like red, blue, or black to make sure that your writing can be easily read.

8. Freezer Labels

If you don’t want to write directly on bags or pans, freezer labels are a great option. You can buy them in packs of 100, and yes, a regular pen should work for them.

9. Food-Safe Freezer Containers

Freezer bags work great for firmer foods, but for things like soups you may want something firmer with a lid. Food-safe freezer containers are a great option, and since they’re made of firm plastic, they can be reused over and over again.

10. Chest Freezer

Okay, this one isn’t a must-have, but it will make freezer cooking easier for you. Most refrigerators have small freezers which means that you’re only going to be able to get a small amount of freezer meals stored. If you have a small chest freezer or small upright freezer, you’ll be able to store significantly more. If the cost of buying one new puts you off, check your local buy, sell, and trade Facebook groups or Craigslist. You can find used freezers significantly cheaper used than new ones.

FreezEasy Freezer Meal Plan

FreezEasy

If you need some help getting started with freezer cooking, FreezEasy is a great way to go. It will teach and equip you with a key strategy and set of tools and resources that will help you get organized and finally feel like you can get a delicious, wholesome dinner on the table without losing your mind!

The FreezEasy Freezer Cooking Meal Plans are printable downloads that contain recipes, shopping lists, assembly notes, assembly instructions – both loading “by recipe” and “by ingredient” – an assembly video, and printable labels for your bags and trays. The downloads are delivered immediately to your inbox after you purchase them.

This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.