RD Cooks: Cheesy Chicken Tortilla Soup

I knew I wanted to make tortilla soup this week, so I purchased all of the things I thought I’d need to make it. Well, a few days, and many recipes, later, I ended up using half of the things for other meals. Dumb, I know. I really need to keep better track! So, this recipe ended up being totally off the cuff and it turned out amazing! And so, so easy. I kept thinking about how proud of myself I was with this one as I devoured my bowl at dinner. Yes, devoured.

Cheesy Chicken Tortilla Soup

  • 1 lb of chicken (Cut of your choice. I used breasts.)
  • 2-12 oz. cans of vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 cup of water
  • 3/4 cup of salsa
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • Salt & Pepper
  • A couple squirts of Sriracha Hot Sauce, to taste
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 small can of diced green chiles
  • 3 cups of shredded mexican cheese
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 cups of milk


  • Dice up or shred cooked chicken, seasoned well
  • In a large pot, toss onions and green peppers with a little olive oil and cook to soften.
  • Put broth, chicken, water, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, salsa, red pepper flakes, Sriracha, salt, pepper, green chiles into the large pot. Bring to a boil.
  • While that heats up, melt the butter in a separate sauce pan.
  • Once butter is melted, whisk in flour and stir until well blended.
  • Add milk and continue to whisk. If it is too thick, add some of the broth mixture and continue to mix.
  • Bring to a boil and add in the cheese. Stir until thoroughly melted.
  • Pour the cheese mixture into the soup and stir as you do.
  • Turn heat to low/medium and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, stirring regularly.
  • Serve with tortilla strips and sour cream.

RD Cooks: Philly Joes

Who didn’t love sloppy joes as a kid? I think I probably begged my mom to make them on a weekly basis. The messy sandwiches are still a great dinner here and there, but sometimes you want a change. Well folks, this is that change you have been looking for. Seriously, the first time I had these, I was in love. I think you will be, too.

Philly Joes (aka Philly Cheesesteak Sloppy Joes)

  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • Hoagie rolls, or bread of choice
  • 1 cup of beef stock
  • 1/2 cup of steak sauce
  • 1/2 medium onion, sliced
  • 1/2 green pepper (optional, I didn’t have one on hand)
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 2 tbsp butter or margarine
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1 cup of milk (may find that you need more as you go)
  • 2 cups of your choice of shredded white cheese, I used Monterrey Jack


  • Start by tossing your onions and green peppers in a pan and cook for about 4-5 minutes.
  • Add in the ground beef and cook until browned thoroughly.
  • Drain grease and put beef back into pan.
  • Add beef stock, salt and pepper, and steak sauce. You can add more if the mix isn’t “Sloppy” enough for you.
  • Let simmer while you make the cheese sauce.
  • In a separate sauce pan, melt butter completely.
  • Whisk in flour and stir until mixed.
  • Pour in milk, continue to whisk until bubbling.
  • Add cheese and mix until melted. You may find that you need more milk, add little by little until you have a good creamy consistency.
  • Serve the meat on toasted rolls, top with desired amount of cheese sauce and enjoy!

RD Cooks: Kraut Berok

Kraut Berok is one of those family favorite that I grew up having at least once a month. No one I had ever known had heard of it before, I had never seen it on a menu anywhere, and I was convinced that this was a family secret until only a few years ago. I was trying to google around and see where this recipe came from and really learned a lot!

Apparently, Kraut Berok is a German meal that is actually a pastry stuffed with cabbage and meat. We never did it that way! We always made a nice cabbage and meat mixture, but topped it with drop biscuits and baked it. It is honestly one of my favorites and is so easy to customize it is insane. It is also one of the cheaper meals I make on a regular basis. I hope your family like it as much as mine! If you add it to your regular rotation, let me know!

Realistically Domestic’s Kraut Berok

  • 1.5 pounds of ground beef (your choice of selection)
  • 1 head of cabbage
  • 1 yellow onion
  • ~10 large button mushrooms
  • 5-6 shakes of Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 2 1/2 cups Biquick baking mix (or off-brand)
  • 3/4 cup Milk


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Begin browning by browning your beef in a large pot
  • Add Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper
  • Toss in the mushrooms and onions early in the browning process
  • Once cooked, toss in the cabbage
  • Lower heat to simmer, cover, cook until cabbage is soft
  • Pour entire mixture into a dutch over (or whatever you have for cooking in the oven)
  • Mix Bisquick and milk to create a messy dough
  • Spoon drop dough onto the top of the cabbage and meat mixture
  • Cook, covered, in oven for 20 minutes
  • Uncover and cook to brown the biscuits, approx. 5 more minutes
  • Dish up and enjoy!

Tips: My husband like to add hot sauce to this right before eating. If you want it to be a little less dry, I have successfully used cream of mushroom soup and/or sour cream. Feel free to mix in whatever you’d like. My mom never made it with mushrooms, but that was an addition I made a few years ago and loved it.

31 Days – Lazy Casserole for a Lazy Day

Actually, it wasn’t a very lazy day at all, but every time I make this recipe, I think of the Lazy Sunday song from SNL. It is awesome.

Anyway, this casserole is one of my new favorites. I’ve made it three times in the past 5 weeks. It is crazy easy and absolutely a “set it and forget it” meal. If you are familiar with Hobo Dinners, it is sort of like that, but classied up a bit. This is also a recipe that leaves a lot of room for improvisation. Feel free to add your own spin, but please let me know what you do so I can try it, too! Oh, and did I mention that this is pretty healthy?

Stay tuned after the recipe for a little tip that might save your sanity!

Lazy Casserole

  • One package of smoked sausage
  • 8 medium sized potatoes
  • 1 package of baby carrots (one pound)
  • 8-10 button mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 1/2 cups of Italian dressing
  • Salt & Pepper


  • Pull out a 9×13 baking dish, or size of your choice, and coat well with olive oil
  • Preheat oven to 400
  • Peel, roughly cut (into eighths) and boil potatoes to almost done
  • Put the carrots and mushrooms in the dish
  • Slice up the sausage and add to the dish
  • Add the potatoes to the dish
  • Pour Italian dressing, salt, pepper and any other desired spices and mix everything together
  • Bake, covered, for 45 minutes
  • Uncover, stir and bake uncovered for another 15-20 minutes until sausage is browned and potatoes/carrots are a good texture.

Special Tip: Instead of peeling a potato the normal way, try this. Cut a shallow circle around raw potatoes to separate the skin. Place potatoes into boiling water for 17 minutes (exactly!) and pull out one at a time and drop in ice water filled dish. The skins will just fall off with your touch! It is crazy easy and a nice way to skip the annoying job of peeling them by hand.


31 Days – Easy Delicious Chicken Dumpling Soup

I have been on a major comfort food kick lately, so I hope that you like your food to be warm and cozy! Today’s recipe is no different. One of my all time favorite recipes, and something that I make at least once a month in the Fall/Winter, is Chicken Dumpling Soup. Chicken and Dumplings means a lot of different things to different people, and this is my rendition. My mom made it this way, it is what I was raised on, and it will warm you from the tips of your toes to the top of your head. I may have had two bowls the first night and one the next day for breakfast. I said maybe.

Chicken & Dumpling Soup

  • One carton of Chicken Stock
  • One pound of chicken (white or dark, your choice)
  • 3 cups of carrots, diced
  • 2 cups of celery, diced
  • 1 cups of onions, diced
  • 3 chicken bouillon cubes
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Onion Powder
  • Garlic Powder
  • 6 cups of water
  • 3 cups Bisquick, or off brand, baking mix
  • 3/4 cup of milk (give or take)


  • Turn crock pot on high and pour in the chicken stock and water
  • Add bouillon cubes, salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and stir
  • Drop in the chicken, raw is okay
  • Throw in the veggies
  • Cook on medium/high for 6-8 hours
  • Once the soup is done, start mixing up the milk and Baking mix. You want this to be on the thick side to hold well.
  • Drop the mix on the top of the soup, by the spoonful
  • Let cook for additional 30-45 minutes, or until the dumplings are nice and fluffy
  • Dish it up and enjoy!


31 Days – Just Another Meatless Monday

I am a meat and potatoes girl, and my husband is a die hard sandwich guy. It took a LONG time for me to break the “every meal needs a meat” mindset, but once I did, a whole new world opened up. We have been practicing meatless Mondays for quite some time now. They don’t always fall on Mondays, but it is hard to find something that sounds as good that means something similar…

One of my favorite ways to go meatless is soups. Double that with a hearty ingredient like lentils, and you have the perfect fall food for a meatless day of your choosing. Here is a recent recipe that I just jumbled together. I love when those recipes work out!

Hearty Vegetarian Lima Lentil Soup

  • 3 cups of lentils
  • 2 cups of lima beans (I use frozen)
  • 2 cups of carrots, cut however you’d like
  • 2 celery stems, diced thin
  • 1 cup of corn (again, frozen in our house)
  • A handful of diced green onions
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cups of vegetable stock
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 tbs onion powder
  • 1 tbs garlic powder
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Note: You can add other veggies if you so please. I just used what I had on hand. Mushrooms might be great!


  • Toss everything in a crock pot, set on high, cook for 3-4 hours (Or low setting for 6-8)
  • Stir occasionally to keep from separating
  • Eat & Enjoy!

(I topped mine with a little sour cream, but you don’t have to.)

How is that for easy? 🙂