Theeeese a a few of my favorite things…
I found some frozen roasted chicken in the freezer and decided it would fare best if cooked and would be perfect in a calzone. Add my fav flavors, and thus, a meal is born. I used roasted chicken, crispy bacon, chopped tomato, alfredo sauce, ranch seasoning, and mozzarella. I felt like a rockstar to prep this 75% of the way the night before and just finish it before serving. Boo-yah.
2 cups roasted chicken
3 strips of bacon
1 1/2 cups mozzarella (mine was a mix of fresh & shredded)
3 tbs dried ranch seasoning
1 cup alfredo sauce
1 small tomato, diced
Preheat the oven & pizza stone (if using one) to 400-degrees.
Pan fry the bacon until crispy.
Warm the chicken in a medium pan over low heat and add 1 tablespoon of the ranch seasoning.
Lay the dough onto the pan or pizza stone, off center, for the filling to go on the bottom and for the rest to fold over.
Add chicken, tomatoes, cheese, alfredo, and ranch seasoning.
Then repeat the layers making sure to get the filling all the way to the ends & edges.
Fold the rest of the dough over the filling and pinch to close. Press down slightly to push the filling throughout the inside. Cut a few slits into the top to vent.
Bake 30 minutes until browned and crisped.
Serve and enjoy!
I knew we’d love this. What’s not to love? It was a perfect use for some leftover roasted chicken from the freezer (also the dough and bacon came from the freezer too). It was equally perfect that I prepped it the night before when I didn’t have to rush. I cooked it for about 20 minutes that night and just 15 minutes to serve. Dinner time is such a race against the clock and it was really nice to have this pretty ready. #winning
I was totally inspired by this lunch-lady-dude on Next Food Network Star when he made maple bacon creamed corn to top with a crab cake. I wish it were time for local fresh corn, but we’re not quite there yet. Instead, this is the snazziest freezer-side-dish ever.
We grilled some chicken to serve over this sweet and smokey creamed corn. I couldn’t believe it…the little one gobbled almost a whole chicken thigh! He tends to choose the fruits/veggies/carbs over chicken but we just keep serving it. He had some regular corn and some of this maple bacon creamed corn.
The creamed corn took the same amount of time to cook as the chicken. Perfect!
2 slices of bacon
1/2 yellow onion
2 tablespoons butter
2 1/2 cups corn
3 tablesoons of water
1/3 cup milk or cream
2 tbs maple syrup
Pan fry the bacon.
While the bacon is cooking, chop the onion and add the onion pieces and butter to a heavy pan over medium-high heat. Let the onions cook until soft & translucent ~8 minutes.
Add in the corn (mine was frozen), the water, syrup, and the milk.
Bring to a simmer and cook for about 5-10 minutes.
If using frozen corn, remove about 1/3 – 1/2 and blend or food process it a little bit. Break it down a bit without totally obliterating it. Fresh corn will likely break down a bit on is own.
Add that back in, stir, and then add in the crispy bacon.
Stir while cooking another minute or two. Serve and enjoy!
I loved the sweet maple-y bacon flavors with spiced grilled chicken. It was a quick & unusual side dish for us with some pretty easy grilled chicken thighs. I like a new thing to go with something hands-off/no-stress/straightforward other foods. It would have been ideal to have a sharp & peppery arugula salad with this, but this was what we could make happen. This family dinner outside was glorious.
We tend to be slaw/potato salad folks around here. I almost made this as potato salad, but that takes so. much. longer. This, as pasta salad, was super quick…like end of naptime quick. I boiled the pasta and started to fry the bacon while the pasta got a chance to cool. It got dressed to hang out in the fridge until dinner time. Voila! This is best when chilled for 1-3 hours and served then. To serve the next day it’ll need some mayo/plain yogurt/sour cream. The blue cheese dressing is more on the oily side versus the purely creamy side.
Bacon Blue Cheese Pasta Salad (serves 4)
1/4 box of large elbow pasta
2-3 slices of bacon
1 1/4 cup blue cheese salad dressing
2 tbs fresh chives, chopped (or green onions)
salt & pepper
crumbled blue cheese (optional)
hot sauce (optional)
Directions: (prep at least 1 hour in advance)
Boil pasta according to the package, cooking until soft, less than al dente.
Chop and pan fry the bacon until crisp, then drain.
Let the pasta cool. Stir a few times so it doesn’t become one chunk of pasta. Once cool, mix in 1 cup of the blue cheese dressing and the chives. Add in salt & pepper. Then cover and refrigerate at least an hour, preferably 1-3 hours.
Before serving, mix in the rest of the dressing and most of the bacon, reserving a little for the top.
Serve with the rest of the bacon on top. Enjoy!
This was great! I liked the flavor and the subtlety of it. I didn’t add in additional blue cheese or hot sauce, but this could totally become buffalo blue cheese pasta salad. I used the good, produce-area, blue cheese dressing. I think this is so easy that it is worth repeating and adds a great alternative to the normal, often-lackluster pasta salad.
I’m on a bfast quest for some weekly fun not sweet breakfasts and these were so fun! I prepped them Sunday night and they were so perfect to quickly warm and have something delicious to start the day with. These breakfast bowls had bacon, hard boiled egg, everything-bagel-spices, and cracked wheat.
Bacon, Egg, & Grain Bfast Bowl (4-5 servings)
1 cup cracked wheat/rice/lentils/barley
1/4 tsp dried onion
1/4 tsp sesame seeds
1/4 tsp poppy seeds
1/4 tsp garlic powder
salt & pepper
3 strips of bacon
4 eggs, hard-boiled
Cook the cracked grain according to the package. (Mine was cracked wheat).
While the grain is cooking, pan fry the bacon and hard boil the eggs.
In a dry pan over medium low heat, toast the spices, stirring regularly.
Drain the bacon onto a paper towel, saving 1 tsp of the bacon drippings. Add the drippings and the bacon into the cooked grain.
Stir the toasted spices into the grain too.
Chop the hard boiled egg and add that into the grain.
Serve and enjoy!
I was going to add in some cheese, but I ended up thinking it didn’t even need it. This was so good. The grain makes it really filling! I split it into 4 servings and I mini serving of the cracked wheat for the little guy. The everything-bagel totally amped up the flavor and I looooved that addition. These would pack up really easily if bfast travels with you to work too. Yum. This is where good morning comes from.
Ohh yes I did. You’re welcome. This burger was de-lightful. I’m on a roll with burger ideas and know they tend to fizzle out a bit once I get into fall/winter mode, but this one was so fun. The burger toppings are inspired by a cobb salad. Hard boiled eggs, bacon, sweet lettuce, blue cheese dressing, etc make eggs-cellent toppings! It’d also be great on a cobb salad bed rather than a bun, if that’s your thing.
You could do this year round in a pan/griddle and it is a great cooking-for-one dinner idea or prime when you’re in the “what’s for dinner” scrounging through the fridge.
Burgers (mine was a chicken burger)
2 strips of bacon per burger
cucumber, sliced thinly
2 hard boiled eggs
blue cheese dressing
Hard boil the eggs and let them cool then pan fry the bacon until crisp.
Grill the burgers.
Top with lettuce, cukes, egg slices, bacon, and blue cheese dressing.
This was a fun one. I used potato rolls that just seemed to make this burger. Yum.
This is all I need in life for breakfast. Well, maybe this biscuit with a runny-yolked egg as well. The bacon, cheddar cheese, and chives are so great in a fluffy buttery biscuit instead of just being on a biscuit as a bfast sandwich.
Yum. These would be so great with an egg. Or as a breakfast sandwich, or on the go. Seriously so good any way you eat them. I was so impressed how fluffy and puffy the biscuits got. I froze some others before they got stale so I’ll have to report back how they are out of the freezer.
biscuit mix, prepared according to the package
2 strips of bacon
1 cup of shredded cheddar
2 tbs chives, chopped (or green onions)
Fry the bacon until crisp and let excess fat drain. Then chop it into small pieces.
Mix up the biscuits according to your package, adding in the cheese, bacon, and chives.
Flour the counter with biscuit mix, and need them a few times. Flatten the dough out to 1/2 inch thick and cut out the biscuits with a biscuit cutter, a jar lid, a juice glass, etc.
Bake according to your mix.
Right at the end, brush with some melted butter.
Serve & enjoy!
You can thank me later. I couldn’t get over how fluffy these are! They were so quick to mix and bake. I had everything cleaned up before they were out of the oven and then I fell in love….probably smart that I did the dishes first because once I ate these I was really loving them. So good!
My ratios were a touch off, but his breakfast burger was so fun. What’s more breakfast than bacon, an everything bagel, cheddar cheese, and a sunny side egg?! The bagel is pretty huge making an already small-ish burger look tiny but this one is a winner.
I mixed up some maple mustard for a touch of sweetness and a little mustardy tang. That and the egg yolk are the only condiments needed!
I made breakfast burgers on english muffins with bacon jam that were really incredible. Breakfast for dinner is the best!
After making the BLT Panini, I had some really good bacon leftover so I wanted to make something else fun with it. I have no trouble finding uses for it but I thought about adding it into a pasta and then decided to let it have the spotlight. Sundried tomatoes and spinach rounded out the BLT-ness of this and the sauce was really minimal. The minimal is good in this scenario since the 1980s are probably trying to reach me and take the sundried tomatoes back.
6 slices of thick cut bacon
1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, sliced
3 cups baby spinach
1/2 pound pasta
2 tbs butter
1 tbs creamed cheese
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
Bring salted water to a boil for the pasta.
Pan fry the bacon until crisp in a large skillet, then remove and drain on paper towels. Remove from the heat and discard half the bacon grease (keeping half in the pan).
Cook the pasta to al dente according to the package.
Chop the sundried tomato and spinach to the size of your liking. I chopped the spinach just a bit and chopped the sundried tomatoes a lot.
Drain the pasta when cooked reserving a bit of the starchy water.
In the skillet with the bacon drippings, add in the butter and the cream cheese, melting over medium low heat. Add in the milk, pasta, sundried tomatoes, parmesan, spinach, salt & pepper.
Raise heat to medium and toss well to coat for 1-2 minutes. If it seems too dry, add in a splash of the cooking water.
Serve promptly & enjoy!
I liked the simplicity of this dinner. I didn’t want the spinach to disintegrate completely, just to warm a touch. I’m all about sundried tomatoes lately. Sometimes you just need to revisit something to remember what a fun tough it brings. Roasted cherry tomatoes would be good too.
In case you aren’t up on every. single. line. of Friends episodes…
Friends episode with sun dried tomatoes
This might be my new favorite quiche. Bacon and cheddar is a happy union but the caramelized onions add some sweetness to the party. I need caramelized onions in my life more often. I bought onions and then discovered I already had a bunch. Oops. Time to make a batch of caramelized onions before mine start growing sprouts. I made a big batch and froze the rest for the next pizza that needs a topping, or omelette that needs something special, or the next panini. If you’re going to take the time/patience to caramelize one onion, you might as well caramelize a bunch.
5 slices bacon
2 egg yolks
1 cup milk
1 tbs dijon mustard
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
salt & pepper
1 onion, caramelized
6 oz cheddar
Cut onions into thick rings then in half and half again the other way. Caramelize onions in a heavy skillet over low heat and 1 tbs of olive oil.
Cook over low, stirring occasionally for 30-40 minutes until lightly browned.
Pan fry the bacon until crisp.
Preheat the oven to 350-degrees.
Whisk together the eggs, yolks, milk, mustard, cream of tartar, salt & pepper.
In the crust, add in the cheese, bacon, and onions in layers.
Pour the egg liquid mixture over the top.
Bake 30 minutes until the center is set. Let cool before slicing. Enjoy!
I love the smoky bacon with the sweet onions, with the sharp cheddar. Pure bliss. Quiche is perfect for breakfast or lunch and I loved having some on hand. I doubled the egg mixture (thanks to eggs from the ‘rents) and made my sis a broccoli cheddar quiche at the same time. A crust pack of 2 and plenty of cheese on hand helped remind me that making 2 quiches at once was the same amount of work as making one. Try it. Double the egg mix and use the veggies you have around and gift one away. It’ll feel as good as it tastes.
There are only so many variations on a BLT that I can share (like this Avocado BLT, or this BLT Burger, or this BLT Scallop Pizza, or this BLT Pasta Salad, or Bacon Jam BLT Pizza) but I panini-ified my BLT and splurged on good ingredients to make it a dinner. I went all out on thickcut, pepper-crusted bacon. Think expensive bacon. I mean, it was dinner, so the pricey stuff was worth it.
thick cut bacon, 3 slices per sandwich
oatmeal or sourdough bread
colby jack or sharp cheddar cheese
aoli/mayo (I used this!)/parmesan peppercorn dressing/honey mustard
Bake the bacon slices in a 400-degree oven for 20-30 minutes on a cooling rack ontop of a baking sheet.
While the bacon is baking, spread the bread with mayo. Top the bread with the bacon. Load it up, this is a dinner sandwich.
Layer the sandwiches with arugula, and tomato.
Top with cheese and 2nd slice of bread. Preheat the panini press, a grill pan, or a griddle.
Brush the bread/griddle/press with olive oil and grill the sandwiches until crisp and melted.
I liked this one a lot. I think the arugula and the peppery bacon were great touches to elevate this to a more special sandwich. The greens need to be one that can stand getting warmed, like arugula or spinach. Regular lettuces would just get wilty. I liked this sandwich grilled. Toasty bread is my favorite and those grill lines are the best but melting the cheese and warming everything through took it from a toasted sandwich to a panini.
Do you ever bake your bacon? It keeps it flat, you don’t have spatters of bacon grease, and you don’t have to flip & babysit it. I don’t always bake it, but it is such a great method. Anytime I’m going to chop the bacon I do that before cooking it and then I can push it around the pan and just scoop with a slotted spoon instead of trying to keep it from curling up and cooking unevenly.