This roasted red pepper pasta can be served vegetarian or you can add Italian sausage – spicy or mild. I love this because it comes together so quick but it tastes different than the classic pasta with marinara. Sometimes you want pasta but you want …
Chuck roast chili came about on the first cold day here in Tennessee, when I wanted chili but didn’t have ground beef on hand. It uses the same cut of meat you’d use in a pot roast – but with all of the ingredients and flavors of a chili! This chuck roast chili also uses beans, which I know is a polarizing addition to chili, but it’s our favorite way to eat it.
See the instagram post here
Chili for all ages!
Arden is 7.5 months at this point and he seems to prefer bold flavors in his food. Who could blame him?! I wanted to make us chili for dinner but as always, I like him to eat what we eat. Since a good chili involves a lot of salt and a lot of spices, I made his in a separate bowl entirely. If you have older kids who like some kick, there’s no need to separate it.
As always, I use Solid Starts to double check foods against my baby’s age for introduction.
What you’ll need for Chuck Roast Chili
- Large dutch oven or stove top pot and a smaller pot for baby’s portion
- Cutting board to chop your veggies
- Olive oil
- Chuck roast (pot roast)
- Bell peppers
- Poblanos (for adults)
- Rotel (for adults)
- Corn (fresh or frozen)
- Black beans
- Kidney beans
- Tomato paste
- Low sodium broth (vegetable or chicken or beef)
- Apple cider vinegar (or whatever vinegar you have on hand)
- Spices: coriander, cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika (optional), kosher salt, cayenne (optional)
How to make this chili
Cut off a small piece of the beef for baby and set aside. Salt the big piece liberally. Brown the big piece in a large Dutch oven in a little oil and the baby portion in a smaller pot in a little olive oil as well. Remove both once browned and set aside.
Dice the onion, bell peppers, and poblano (keep this one separate) and mince the garlic.
Add ~90% of the diced veggies (and all of the poblano) to the large pot and the other 10% to the baby one. Sauté until soft.
Then add, again, 90% of the beans and corn and all of the Rotel to the big pot and remaining beans and corn to the baby. Then add the rest of the ingredients according to pot size and bring to a simmer and stir well.
Nestle the meat in their respective pots and cover. Cook on low for 4+ hours.
Remove the meat from the big pot and shred it. While you’re doing that, bring it to a boil and reduce the liquid down. Add meat back in. Blend the baby version in a high powered blender. Serve with your favorite chili toppings!
To save for later: cool chili entirely and store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Other Great Soup Options:
Chuck Roast Chili
- 2 lbs chuck roast beef
- 1 small sweet onion diced
- 2 bell peppers diced
- 1 poblano, diced adult portion only
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 can black beans rinsed
- 1 can kidney beans rinsed
- 1 can rotel adult portion only
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 1/4 cup tomato paste adult portion
- 1 tbsp tomato paste baby portion
- 1 cup low sodium broth adult portion
- 1/4 cup low sodium broth baby portion
- splash apple cider vinegar
- dash coriander, cumin, smoked paprika, chili powder for baby portion
- 1 tbsp kosher salt adults
- 3 tbsp chili powder adults
- 2 tbsp cumin adults
- 1 tbsp coriander adults
- cayenne as desired
- Cut off a small piece of the beef for baby and set aside. Salt the big piece liberally. Brown the big piece in a large Dutch oven in a little oil and the baby portion in a smaller pot in a little olive oil as well. Remove both once browned and set aside.
- Add ~90% of the diced veggies (and all of the poblano) to the large pot and the other 10% to the baby one. Sauté until soft.
- Then add, again, 90% of the beans and corn and all of the Rotel to the big pot and remaining beans and corn to the baby.
- Then add the rest of the ingredients according to pot size and bring to a simmer and stir well.
- Nestle the meat in there and cover. Cook on low for 4+ hours.
- Remove the meat from the big pot and shred it. While you’re doing that, bring it to a boil and reduce the liquid down. Add meat back in. Blend the baby version in a high powered blender. Serve with your favorite chili toppings!
This lentil and veggie soup for babies and the family is an easy way to make dinner for everyone. It was an instant hit with Arden (6.5 months at the time) and was a hit with the adults too! This is also dairy free for any allergies out there.
See the instagram post here
Introducing New Foods!
I wanted to introduce little man to lentils but wasn’t sure how I wanted to do it. I had honestly never had lentils before so I wasn’t sure I’d even like them! But we know I love to try and serve whatever we’re eating to him, so I was excited to try this one. It was an INSTANT hit. His favorite food so far!
Here’s what I followed for more info on lentils.
What you’ll need for this Lentil and Veggie Soup for Babies and the Family
- Large dutch oven or stove top pot
- Cutting board to chop your veggies
- An immersion blender or high powdered blender
- Olive oil
- Small onion, diced
- Carrots, diced
- Celery stalks, diced
- Bunch of bok choy, ends diced (leaves saved for later)
- Garlic cloves, minced
- Green lentils
- 1 container (32oz) low sodium vegetable broth
- Russet potato, diced
- Sweet potato, diced
- Curry powder
- Coconut milk
- Lacinato kale
How to make this one pot soup for everyone
Dice the veggies and mince the garlic. Measure out the rest of the ingredients (measurements in recipe card below).
Heat the pot or dutch oven to medium heat and add in the olive oil. Saute the veggies and garlic until soft – about 5 minutes or so. Add in everything else except the kale, bok choy leaves, and coconut milk.
Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Let it simmer for 30 minutes.
Add the greens and coconut milk.
Remove the baby’s portion and either blend it or keep it as is.
Add in the salt and stir. Remove about 1/3 and blend it and add it back to the soup for a creamy texture.
Enjoy with some bread if you so choose!
To save for later: cool soup entirely and store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3-4 months.
Other Great Soup Options:
Lentil Soup for Babies and the Family
- 1 small onion diced
- 2 medium carrots diced
- 2 celery stalks diced
- 1 bunch bok choy diced, save the greens for later
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 cups green lentils
- 1 container 32 oz vegetable broth
- 2 cups water
- 1 russet potato diced
- 1 sweet potato diced
- 2 tbsp curry powder
- 1 tbsp cumin
- 1 can coconut milk
- 1 bunch lacinato kale
- 1 tbsp kosher salt added after baby's portion removed
- Cook down the diced veggies in a little olive oil.
- Add in everything else except the kale, bok choy leaves, and coconut milk.
- Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Let it simmer for 30 minutes
- Add the greens and coconut milk.
- Remove the baby’s portion and either blend it or keep it as is.
- Add in the salt and stir
- Remove about 1/3 and blend it and add it back to the soup for a creamy texture. Enjoy with some bread if you so choose!
Traditional versus Low-FODMAP Being from New Orleans, I knew I needed to have a traditional chicken and sausage gumbo on my blog. If you’ve been following for a while, you’ll know I used to follow a low-FODMAP diet. Gumbo is one of my favorite things …
This was a big hit on Instagram so I figured I’d give it a more permanent spot on my website. If you are more of a video person, check out the saved story highlight “Turkey Time” on my home instagram page.
Give More Love To The Bird
How many times have you heard someone say “I don’t care for turkey” in reference to a holiday bird? Or even “the turkey is always dry!” I think holiday turkeys get a lot of hate because people have never had good holiday turkeys. A little TLC is all you need to have really great tender and juicy meat on your table!
After many years of making the Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving turkey, I have honed in on my favorite method: the dry brine, aka “salting.” This is not unique to me and in no way can I claim this method “mine” – but I tell you what, people always complement my turkey. “This is so moist!” I hear. It’s the best compliment (even if you hate that word) is it not?
Dry Brine Ingredients and Needs
A dry brine turkey involves more time, but less space. It involves more salt, but less mess.
What you’ll need:
- A roasting pan (I use this one – it was a wedding gift!)
- 1/2 cup of kosher salt per 10 pounds of bird, per day. See below to help gauge amount
- Dried basil, oregano, and thyme
- Room in your fridge for the roasting pan
- A turkey, of course!
10 lb or less: 1-2 days of brining, 1/2 cup salt per day (far less if you’re just doing breasts)
10-15 pounds: 2-3 days of brining, 2/3-3/4 cup salt per day
15-20 pounds: 2-3 days of brining, 3/4-1 cup salt per day
20+ pounds: 3 days of brining, 1 cup salt per day
You generally want 1 pound of turkey per meat-eating person at your dinner. You know your crowd best though – if you know there will be a lot of food, you can go a little less to save on money.
Turkeys usually come frozen and they take DAYS (literally, days) to defrost! Keep this is mind when you’re planning your schedule – you may want to buy your bird up to a week in advance and let it defrost in the fridge for a while so you have time to give it the brine attention it deserves. You cannot deal with a frozen turkey – you will have a bad time.
Try to get a turkey that is JUST that: turkey. A lot of them come in a brining solution and that’s going to throw off the salt ratios you’re adding in your brine! Just read the ingredients before purchasing.
Step by Step
Step 1: Prep the bird
Remove the packaging, the giblets, and the neck of the turkey (save the giblets and neck if you want them for gravy!). Place your turkey breast side up in the roasting pan.
Step 2: Prep the salt and herbs
Clean your hands and prep the appropriate amount of salt in a bowl (you don’t want to be digging in your salt cellar with turkey hands) and add big dashes of dried thyme, basil, and oregano.
Step 3: Glove up and separate the skin from meat
The most crucial part! Using your hands, start at the neck and separate the skin from the meat all over the turkey as best you can (there are probably YouTube videos out there for this). Getting the salt between the skin and meat is what really makes this method special. We want to penetrate the raw meat, not just the skin.
Step 4: Dry Brine Turkey!
Spread the salty herb mixture all over the bird – on the skin, between the skin and meat, the legs, the thighs, the breasts, even inside the cavity. Get it everywhere. It’s a lot of salt so there is a lot to go around. Use it all!
Step 5: Back in the fridge, uncovered, and repeat each day leading to roasting day
Now, To Roast!
You covered your bird in the salt herb mixture each day, right? You have a dry brine turkey! Now it’s time to roast!
Depending on the size of your turkey, you’re going to need likely several hours to roast + an hour to rest + time to carve and make gravy.
- Take the turkey out of the fridge and tuck the wings back.
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
- Fill the cavity with aromatics: half an onion, garlic, celery, rosemary, half a lemon and/or orange (NOT with stuffing, please. It’s too hard to get the stuffing properly cooked to temperature without overcooking your meat. No one wants bloody stuffing. Or mushy stuffing. Just do that separately).
- Slice up a whole stick of butter and slide it between the skin and meat all over. Put a few pieces on top of the skin as well. Cover the bird in olive oil.
- Place it in your hot oven and roast it on the high temp for 20 minutes. Without opening the oven, reduce the temperature to 350 and set a 45 minute timer.
- Every 45 minutes: remove the turkey and shut the oven door. Baste the turkey all over with the drippings. If there aren’t a lot of drippings, just add about 1/4 cup water to the bottom of the pan, stir it about, and use that.
- Rotate the pan and back in the oven another 45 minutes. Repeat that process until the internal temperature comes to 165 degrees F all over – in the deepest parts of the breasts, the thighs, the joints, etc. Use your own instant read thermometer! The pop tab on the turkey is useless.
- Once it’s fully cooked, remove and let it rest an hour.
- Carve it up and ENJOY!
Try these sides with your turkey: