Saturday, April 4, 2015

Cook it Up! Cookbook Challenge - March Edition

Today I'm linking up with Cook It Up! A Cookbook hosted by Trish at Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity and Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth Fish Reads

I had pulled a cookbook to use for the month of March but I just wasn't feeling it this month.  In reality I haven't been feeling cookbooks at all.and have found myself turning to Pinterest for most of the month instead.   So instead of talking about a cookbook that I really didn't use much I thought I'd talk about my favorite food blogs and the recipes I turn to regularly. I'm sticking with quick main dishes for today.  We'll tackle cookies and cakes and everything else another time!

Plain Chicken is probably my favorite food blog.  The title is a reference to her being a picky child who would just order plain chicken but her tastes have definitely broadened a bit.  There are some recipes that use cream of whatever soup but those are mostly older recipes.  I've never had anything I've made from her turn out worse than good and most become instant favorites.  She's heavier on the savory but does have some pretty tasty desserts as well.  Plus, she's also kind of local and she's an Auburn fan so what can be better!

My Top Three Plain Chicken Recipes:

1.  Chicken and Ravioli Carbonara - Most of the time when I make this I leave the chicken out.  I really don't miss it.

2.  Chipotle Ranch Burgers - This is so good and most of the heat is in the sauce so I can adjust it for my wimpy kids.  I make my burgers on the stove because that's what Bobby Flay does and he is never wrong when it comes to burgers.

3.  Chicken Lazone - This is chicken in a cream sauce over pasta and it's seriously tasty!  In fact I just added it to next week's menu because when I pulled it up I realized we haven't had it in awhile!

Six Sisters' Stuff - This was one of the first blogs I discovered when I tumbled down the rabbit hole and it's still one I use the most.

My Top Three Six Sisters' Stuff Recipes:

1.  Slow Cooker Brown Sugar and Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin - so this isn't exactly quick since it's a slow cooker recipe but the prep time is pretty fast and then you just make the sauce in the last little bit of cooking.  Serve it with mashed potatoes or something to drink up the sauce.  Or just bring a straw.

2.  Easy Chicken Ranch Tacos - The recipe sounds a little weird but the flavor combination is amazing.  I use the chicken in both taco shells and tortillas and it's always a favorite.  Just top with cheese and sour cream and all your other favorite toppings.

3. P.F. Chang's Mongolian Beef Copycat - Mongolian Beef is one of our favorites at P.F. Chang's and this recipe is amazingly close.  I still like P.F. Chang's better but that's really only because I don't have to clean up there.

Iowa Girl Eats - I don't use this one quite as much anymore because she's gone gluten free which isn't something that appeals to me.  But, her recipes never disappoint and are what convinced my very chicken/turkey burger skeptic husband that those might not actually kill him.

My Top Three Iowa Girl Eats Recipes:

1.Blue Moon Orange Chicken - This is so good!  My husband isn't a fan of beer in food but even he liked this one.  I'm reminded we haven't had this for awhile either.  Adding it to the menu!

2.  Monterey Chicken Grilled Cheese Sandwiches - I made this on a Friday night and it was so good we had it for dinner on Saturday using the leftover chicken!

3.  Kung Pao Chicken Burgers - I do leave out the peanuts in this one but it's delicious!  I love the slight spice with the sweet and salty flavor combination.  

So, where do you turn when you need a bit of inspiration for dinner?


  1. What an awesome post! All three blogs are new to me, so I'm going to have some fun exploring. I'm not using my cookbooks quite as much as I used to, relying more on magazines. I'm sure what caused my switch.

  2. These blogs are new to me too. Will have to check them out -- thanks!

  3. These sound so good. And we have made the switch to turkey burgers and lot too. Or mostly. And I have substituted ground turkey for ground beef in a lot of old favorites and it's worked pretty well. Thanks!

  4. I'm one of your wimpy kids. Lol. I'm also a picky eater and don't eat much meat(I just don't like it). So chicken is my staple. That being said, I don't really cook. So other people make chicken for me. Lol.
    Mmmm...this post makes me hungry.
    Happy reading!
    Brittany @ This is the Story of My(Reading) Life

    P.S. What JLA book did you buy your daughter?!

  5. These sound so good. And we have made the switch to turkey burgers and lot too. Or mostly. And I have substituted ground turkey for ground beef in a lot of old favorites and it's worked pretty well. Thanks!

  6. What a fun idea for a post! I don't use food blogs much....that would really add to my already way too much time spent on blogs! But, the slow cooker pork loin sounds yummy...I've been meaning to use my slow cooker more often and always have trouble finding recipes.

  7. Hi there! I have just nominated you for the Creative Blogger Award on my site! :) Here are the details:

  8. I just like to think about cooking and trying new recipes, but alas I am not much of a cook and am rather lazy about it. Everything I cook is very plain. Need a magic wand!

  9. I'm definitely going to have to check out these blogs! The Kung Pao Chicken Burgers sounds especially good.

  10. Always on the hunt for good food blogs so will definitely check them out. Thanks for sharing. Emma

  11. I love The Splendid Table, but have been using my cookbooks more than the Internet lately! I usually get lots of ideas from Weekend Cooking posts, too!

  12. Glad you mentioned the Mongolian Beef copy cat. I tried one from Six Sisters' Stuff a while ago (can't remember what now) and wasn't terribly impressed. Guess I should give them a second chance! And so sad...RIP Cook it Up. Thanks for remembering. :)