Tag Archives: enchiladas

Weekly Eating – 2/19/18


Hey y’all! Welcome to the series Weekly Eating.

Here is where I’ll talk about the week’s meal plan versus reality, what we ate for the week, and how we did budget-wise. I hope it gives readers a behind-the-scenes look into our life through the lens of food, and it’s also a way to keep us on track with meal planning and grocery budgeting.

Feel free to share your wins and lessons in the comments below!


Over the weekend we got to explore Raleigh a little, even though it was rainy and gloomy, and we LOVED the Raleigh Beer Garden. Yet one more reason I need spring/summer to hurry up already, so I can sit up on the top deck and leisurely sip a stout in the afternoon sun.

Raleigh Beer Garden rooftop deck

I didn’t get a whole lot of meal prepping done, though I did make a meal plan. Who knows, we often change our minds anyhow! I did attempt a rice pudding with some leftover rice from stir Friday. It was just ‘okay’ unfortunately… I will not be adding shredded coconut anymore, I just hate its texture so much.

coconut rice pudding

Oh, and I also finally got around to a post I’ve been wanting to create for a long time. Spoilers: it involves lots of fruits and colors!

lots of fruits!


Breakfast – Cracklin’ Oat Bran with Almond Milk.

cracklin oat bran

This is a cereal hubs actually grew up on (I’m eternally grateful to mom in law for making healthy eating seem normal his whole life!) and I’d never tried it. So I finally hunted it down in Kroger, and decided now is the time. Turns out, it really is pretty great. It doesn’t taste like cardboard at all, more like really solid cinnamon cookies. If only I could figure out a way to easily make it at home…

Lunch – leftover Best Black Bean Soup and a big salad

black bean soup and salad

Dinner – Shepherd’s Pie with leftover mashed potatoes from pierogi making. Technically it was a Cottage Pie, because it was ground beef and not ground lamb.

baked cottage pie

Snack – raw veggies with hummus, and a coco loco. Yes it says expires Feb 11 and I ate it on the 20th, but guess what? Yogurt is literally full of bacteria. I’m not concerned, nor did I get sick.

hummus and veggiesalmond coco loco


Breakfast – mixed berry smoothie. This had some blueberries and blackberries plus a handful of spinach, and came out quite tasty

mixed berry smoothie

Lunch – veggies + hummus + pretzels. I had this as a snack late in the morning, and it actually filled me up pretty well.

hummus with veggies and pretzels

Snack – Peanut butter bar and Pumpkin Latte. I got the “RXBar” for free as a sample, and the Starbucks Via as a gift for my birthday, so this was free. And delicious. The PSL was just okay, but what do you expect from instant? And the RXBAR was… weird. Very… thick and chewy. But they say that there are only 4 ingredients, so who knows.

pumpkin spice latte and peanut butter date bar

Dinner –Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup. I used up the last little bit of leftover mashed potatoes, which thickened the soup considerably. I usually add chopped up potato, so it worked well. Some diced carrot, celery, and onion, a can of tomatoes, leftover slow cooker pinto beans, frozen green beans, and some broth. Set to cook on high for 6 hours, and a fresh hot meal awaits you! God bless slow cookers.

slow cooker minestrone soup


Breakfast – green smoothie, with a new recipe that I am really loving! Coming soon…

green smoothie in the car

Lunch – leftover pea soup, cranberry green beans, and salad

leftovers lunch

Snack – I brought an Almond Coco Loco and blueberries

almond coco loco and blueberries snack

But then a coworker brought Cherry Pie for someone else’s birthday… so you know what I had instead!

cherry pie

Dinner – Enchiladas with roasted asparagus & Brussels sprouts.

green sauce enchiladas

Ground beef & cheese for the boy, black bean for me.

enchiladas and roasted veggies


Breakfast – Cracklin Oat Bran with cashew milk

cracklin oat bran with cashew milk

Snack – Peaches & Cream Smoothie; recipe coming soon!

peaches and cream smoothie

Lunch – Leftover black bean enchilada, rice, roasted veggies

leftover enchilada and roasted veggies

Dinner – BBQ pulled pork sandwiches from the freezer for the boy, leftover minestrone soup for me

slow cooker minestrone soup


Breakfast –Cracklin Oat Bran, with coconut milk. There was a 2/$5 sale on plant milks last week, can you tell? 🙂 I like the cashew the best so far, it just has the richest flavor. Maybe bc it’s “vanilla”…

cracklin oat bran with coconut milk

Lunch –leftover Minestrone soup, a big salad, and turmeric mango smoothie. I bragged about this one on Twitter.

soup, salad, and smoothie

Snack –hummus & veggies

hummus and carrots and celery

Dinner –I had a ridiculously stressful day, so cooking is not a thing I wanted to do when I got home… luckily my very sweet boy handed me a glass of wine and told me to sit down while he took over. 🙂 We had a simple dinner of salad and pasta, but sometimes a big bowl of carbs and a supportive spouse is all you need to feel better.

bowl full o carbs

The Weekend

Pretty sure the only thing that stands out on this weekend’s calendar is the One Year Anniversary party at Starpoint Brewery in Durham! From 10am – midnight, $4 pints all day of all of their signature brews?? Count us in!

Food Total: $106.28

Just over $100 this week, dang it. I will still count this as a win though, especially as I restocked on ground beef and turkey since our freezer supply was depleted, and lots of yogurts (we go through about 10 a week at least).

I took mercy on him and the boy got some special meat-based meals this week, like a huge 3-cheese ham and turkey sub w buffalo sauce, shepherd’s pie, and beef and cheese enchiladas.

Oh, and $75 of that $100 was produce! $46 of it was just spent on bags of frozen fruit. More spoilers about that upcoming post series… So without taking that into account, we really spent more like $60 this week.


Lessons Learned

One amusing thing I noticed is that even though he requested the Cracklin Oat Bran, I’m the one eating it! I’m glad he introduced me to it though, it really is good. And it’s one of the healthiest cereals I’ve seen. When my creative mojo is not quite awake, but I’m not feeling a smoothie, it’s my new go-to breakfast.

Another thing that stood out, it’s a lesson I learn over and over again, is that leftovers are SO good! Having containers just ready to grab and go is soooo convenient. If I have to put too much effort into food prep in the morning, I’m more likely to say forget it and spend the $7-$15 on lunch somewhere at work. No bueno.

But, the catch is that it is always a balancing act. I don’t want TOO MANY leftovers either, or we can’t eat them fast enough. Even with a six-plus-foot-male appetite in the house. And especially if it is a thing he isn’t super crazy about, and I’m left to my own devices to finish off two types of soup, a stir fry, and a couple enchiladas? That’s a recipe for disaster. So more meals that we know we both love and can and will eat over and over, along with the constant experiments.


How about you guys? Did you have a learning week or an awesome week of wins?

Beefy Cheesy Enchiladas


You know how some days you just don’t want to cook?  Well, I’ve had more than my usual share of those lately.  I usually have a whole list of simple “throw it together” meals just for this reason.  You know, like pasta.  Or cereal.

But the other day, even those seemed like far too much work.  I just… couldn’t.  So I figure, we can order something to go and pick it up, no problem.  Well, did I ever find a keeper.  My fiancee says, no worries, I will cook tonight!  I’m immediately intrigued.  I figure there’s now a 98% chance I’ll be eating burritos.  (Trust me, that’s maybe an under estimation).

What are you going to make?  I ask, as he starts poking around in the refrigerator.  Oh, you’ll see… is the only answer I get.  He’s a man of many mysteries.

With a glass of wine, I settled in to watch the meal unfold.  I could almost see the wheels turning in his head as he pulled out one ingredient after another.  Ground beef… frozen peppers… shredded cheddar cheese… Do we have corn tortillas?

I’m 100% sure it’s burritos now, and ask him as much.  No… not exactly. And your one guess is gone now.  Hmmm…


  • 20 small corn tortillas
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 bell pepper, diced
  • Jar of jalapenos
  • 2-4 tbsp butter
  • Chili powder
  • Salt & pepper
  • 2-3 tbsp flour
  • Optional: refried beans & rice

Corn tortilla for enchilada in pan

Step 1: First he browned the beef in the pan, adding in some chili powder.  After removing that and setting it aside, he diced the peppers finely, and added it to the pan with the butter and a healthy splash of juice from the jarred jalapenos (which I made last spring).

Enchiladas being prepared

Step 2: One by one, over medium-low heat, each tortilla was placed in the pan until softened (to add flavor, he said) and then moved to an aluminum pan.

Putting cheese in the enchiladas

Step 3: Each soft tortilla had a healthy handful of beef added, and a big pinch of cheese.  AHA!  You’re making enchiladas!  He smiled, you got it!  Awesome! … but I was basically right, because enchiladas are just baked burritos.


(Sneak peek of the gorgeous finished product!)

You can use other fillings here too, I didn’t even have to ask but he made a few veggie burritos for me, with black beans, spinach, and mushrooms!  Try more peppers, onions, or different types of beans.

Enchiladas in pan ready for oven

Step 4: For the sauce, he simply added a few tbsp flour to the juices still left in the pan to thicken it up.  With the pepper chunks in it, he poured that over everything, and sprinkled on more cheese (of course).


Step 5: Put into an oven preheated to 350 degrees, and bake for 20-25 minutes, until cheese is melty and bubbly.


This is the lovely finished product!


Top as you like.  We had some cilantro left from a previous Mexican night, as well as salsa, sour cream, and of course more jalapenos!


Throughout the process, rice had been cooking in the rice cooker, and it went off just as the enchiladas were about done.  With a can of refried beans, the meal was complete.


A fiancee-approved meal!


I also had some lime wedges, which I think are just about required with Mexican food.  The tartness helps cut the spice a little.  Plus it looks nice.  🙂

I’ll need to not want to cook more often…

Chicken & Cheese Enchiliadas

It’s no secret that I love all Mexican foods. I’ve written about how I made the perfect refried beans, many variations on tacos, and the simple pizza-like toastadas. I’ve been meaning to tackle a particularly intimidating recipe for a while: enchiladas.
You may not think enchiladas are intimidating, but for whatever reason I kept thinking it would be hard to make these. Then the s.o. requested it, I had a big stack of tortillas in the fridge, and so I was like, ok it’s time.
Turns out, they weren’t so scary after all. And damn delicious.
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
7 tortillas
2 tbsp taco seasoning
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup refried beans
1 cup shredded cheese mix
1 can tomato sauce
1-2 tbsp sriracha
I used large flour tortillas here, I know corn is the norm. But trust me, no one was upset about these. Give it a try, or go ahead and use corn if that’s what you have.
Step 1: Cook the chicken either in the oven, frying pan, or poach in boiling water. Use two forks to shred it finely. Cook in a pan with a little butter and taco seasoning.
Step 2: In each tortilla, spread a few tbsp beans, a handful of shredded chicken, and sprinkle on some cheese. Roll up, and place with the seam-side down in a sprayed oven-safe pan.
Step 4: Once the pan is full, sprinkle more cheese over top, then pour the tomato sauce over everything. Use as much as you need to cover the tops, but not to soak them. (Sidenote, I hate the taste of regular enchilada sauce at restaurants, that’s why I went the homemade tomato sauce version. If you like it or have a jar of enchilada sauce at home, feel free to use that.)
Step 5: Squirt on a thin layer of sriracha and/or hot sauce, and bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.
We ended up having two each, and the leftovers didn’t last more than a day. These could be made in the crock pot as well, simply assemble and leave on low all day. Make sure to add extra sauce so they don’t burn if you go that route.
Serve with a little sour cream on top to cut the spice if that’s your thing.
You could make the vegetarian by adding extra grilled veggies or tofu instead of chicken, and just feel free to add in some onions and peppers regardless of what else is in there.
What’s your favorite Mexican food?

Slow cooker enchiladas

Since I have no oven in my current apartment, I have been looking for new and creative recipes to try in the slow cooker. I found one for enchiladas on Allrecipes.com and decided to use that as the basis for dinner tonight. Of course, I am terrible about measurements, so maybe you’ll want to look up their recipe if you want exact amounts.
~1.5 lbs ground beef
1/2 cup taco seasoning
1/4 cup water
1 can cream of chicken
1 cup salsa
handful of fresh cilantro (because it was on sale 0.74 a bunch!)
Corn tortillas
Shredded cheese
Step 1: Brown the ground beef in a skillet. Drain off as much of the grease as you can. Add the taco seasoning and water, and cook the seasoning into the beef until most is absorbed. This is the second layer over the tortillas.
Step 2: Mix the chicken soup, salsa and diced cilantro in a bowl. This will be your third layer.

Step 3: Spray the inside of the crock pot so hopefully there will be no burnt-on mess later. Put down a layer or 2 of tortillas. Then a layer of meat. Then the cheese mixture. Over the topmost layer of beef, I added some slices of pepper jack to give it an extra little kick.

Keep layering until you use all the beef and soup mixture. Put a top layer of tortillas on and sprinkle with more cheese. 
Put on High for 45 minutes to 1 hour. We will see in an hour how well I did!