Chocolate Espresso Red Wine Meatballs {Crock-pot}


My dear friend Jen is such a great cook. She comes up with some fun combinations that are sure to please! This one is a keeper!
frozen or fresh meat balls (I use the HT fresh Turkey Meatballs)
Good Food brand espresso red wine steak sauce 
1/2 bottle red wine
8 oz of chicken or beef stock
4 to 8 oz sour cream
1/2 bar dark chocolate, good quality
cook all day. when you come home pull some of the sauce out and put into a pot. add chocolate, stir to melt, add a little corn starch or flour, then add sour cream. (however creamy you like it.)   Serve with rice or egg noodles. good luck girls.


crockpowednesday_thumb1 tmtt3 TastyTuesday200pix Tues at the Table



mediterranean chicken

This is a dish that I can across last Fall and after a few tweaks, it is a family fav. It is so easy, you can cut and dump all the ingredients into your slow cooker in about 10 mins! Don’t be scared by the odd combo of food it works and it’s yummy!!
Serve with couscous (so freaking easy! I use chix or veggie broth to add a little flavor!)
1 lb boneless/skinless Chicken Breast cut into 1in chunks (I like to use straight from the freezer)
1-2 lb Butternut Squash, peeled and cubed
1 red pepper, cut in 1 in cubes
1 can diced tomatoes w/liquid
1 12oz jar of salsa
1 cup chix broth
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 tsp cumin
Salt, pepper & garlic to taste
1 can chick peas, drained & rinsed
Mix all ingredients in slow cooker except chick peas cook 4-8 hrs on low (depending on how fast your slow cooker cooks!)
Stir in chick peas and fresh parsley just before serving.
Serve over couscous

Franny’s Fav Mac & Cheese {Crock-pot}

Franny is a  mom of two and wife and a great cook! We met years ago in college and have reconnected through Facebook! One of my more exciting reconnections. Franny describes cooking as her guilty pleasure and says that the whirring of her Kitchen Aid mixer is like a tranquilizer ….calms all my crazy. (LOVE THAT!)
Franny’s Crock Pot Macaroni and Cheese
8oz elbow macaroni, cooked and drained
1 1/2 cups milk

1 large can evaporated milk

2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 tsp salt
dash (or 2) of pepper
3-4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Grease crock pot (or use a crock pot liner). Mix all the ingredients except 1/2 the cheese. Pour into prepared crock pot. Top with remaining cheese. Cook on LOW for 3-6 hours. I usually cook for 4.5-5 hours, but have gone longer.

Let me know what you think. This is one of my family’s favorites.
xoxox y’all!

For more great crock pot recipes visit Debbie!
I am so excited that Franny is going to share some of her yummy tried and true recipes with Mama Bird Nest! I look forward to more! Thanks Girl!
I made this last night and yes it was a hit! Super easy and made enough to have leftovers! yum.

Beef Paprika

2 lbs stew beef meat

1 can of Cream of Celery
1/4 c catsup
2 Tb Worcestershire sauce
1 Tb brown sugar
1 Tb mustard
1 Tb paprika
dash of cayenne pepper
salt & pepper

If you have the time sear meat in a Tb of butter or olive oil then add all ingredients to your crock pot set on low for 6 hrs and serve with rice or egg noodles! How easy!! Enjoy

Lackey’s Ragu

This is a recipe that was shared with me years ago by a friend who is a mom to twin boys and is a great cook. I have shared this with many of my friends all who have raved. It’s sort of a soup, a stew & a pasta. It is just yummy! Perfect for a cool fall day!
Please note: I have adapted this for my CROCKPOT~ See notes in RED!
2 Tb olive oil
1 lg onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb ground turkey
3-4 Italian sausage, casings removed (I use 2 hot, 2 sweet)
2~ 14 1/2 oz cans tomatoes in juice with Italian spices
2~ 14 oz cans chicken broth
1 can Cannelli/white beans, drained
2 tsp oregano
2 tsp basil
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 c small elbow macaroni
1~ 6 oz bag FRESH baby spinach
1/3 c grated Romano cheese

Heat oil, add onions & garlic. Saute 6 mins add ground turkey & sausage crumbles. Brown. (Put in warm crockpot and) Add tomatoes w/ juice, broth, spices, (I waited to add beans until 2 hrs prior to eating) beans and simmer at least 20 min. Add pasta cook 12-14 mins. (if using crockpot pasta may need a little longer) Add spinach & cook apx 3 mins (just before serving) Season with salt & pepper and serve with fresh grated cheese. (again, if using slow cooker… cook on low all day and add spinach apx 10mins before serving.) Yummy!!

For more great recipes visit my friends at Blessed with Grace and Dining with Debbie.

Overnight Oatmeal

I will start this by prefacing by saying I don’t like oatmeal. At least not the oatmeal that you dump out of a bag & add hot water. Not my thing and never has been. But this, this is yummy. I am sure the milk, sugar & butter aid in the flavor dept. and the apples and spices can’t hurt! You can sub in any spices you like and I bet pears would work great in place of the apples. I use really firm apples like Granny Smith or Honey Crisp, any apple that you would cook with will work just fine. I am whipping this up tonight so we can have a great start to the week! I may make this my Sunday night tradition through the winter as Mondays are always so hard to get up and out!
2 c milk
1/4 c brown sugar
1 Tb butter
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 c oatmeal
1 c apple, peeled & chopped
You can add 1/2 cup raisins, dates, cranberries, nuts whatever you like!

Spray crockpot with non stick spray. Combine all ingredients in slow cooker and mix well. Set to low for 6-8 hrs. Yummy!

Birdie’s Cheese Steak


This is one I just pulled out of my hat as I couldn’t decide what to do with the Stew Beef I had thawed. My original plan was satisftying my tastebuds so I concocted a new recipe. They sometimes just come to me!!
Stew Beef
1 Tb canola oil
s & p
1 Tb taco seasoning
1 can beef broth
I seared off my stew meat really quick in just a little canola oil & spices.
Then tossed it in the crockpot with a can of beef broth zapped on high as I did not start dinner till almost 2pm!
1 lg onion sliced
reserved pan drippings
1 Tb butter
2 Tb balsamic vinegar
3 hrs later I carmelized some onions in the same drippings I had from the meat. I added butter & balsamic just before adding beef back to onion mix.
Garlic Bread
Cheese (I used Swiss)
I had 1/2 of a garlic bread left from last night so I thought why not do open faced Philly Cheese Steaks. Garlic bread top with beef & onions and a slice of swiss cheese (again what I had on hand, you could use provolone, cheddar, whatever you have. Place under broiler for 3 mins just to melt cheese. It was fantastic!!

For more great Crockpot Recipes visit Dining with Debbie

Pumpkin Tomato Chicken

Being at home this morning has led me to another adventure in the kitchen. Earlier today I thought I would do BBQ chicken. Fickle me went into the kitchen and just wasn’t excited about that so when I peeked in the fridge I saw pumpkin puree (leftover from muffins) and thought why not use it! And another strange but yummy meal is being created! And it is in the crockpot! 5 mins or less of dumping into said pot and my meal is virtually effortless yip-ee!Chicken breast (I used boneless/skinless straight from freezer)

1 cup pumpkin puree
1 can Tomato Soup
1 pkt Onion Soup mix
2 Tb apple cider vinegar
1 Tb brown sugar
1 Tb Worcestershire sauce
Dump everything in crockpot; give it a good stir, add chicken and cook on low all day! 6-8 hrs
Looking for more great Crockpot Recipes? Check out Dining with Debbie

Rustic Pot Roast

I had a great looking Pot Roast in the freezer and thought that I would just come up with something new to try. I typically use cr of mushroom soup & Lipton onion soup mix. I got all the elements done tonight so all I have to do in the morning is turn the crock pot on low and wait!
I put a few tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet and got the pan nice and hot and sprinkled the meat with kosher salt to get the juices sealed in.

Here are the ingredients

I cut an onion in half and placed it in the evoo and sliced the celery to caramelize a bit. Then I added the red wine and brought to a slow boil, added Italian pkt, seasonings, pasta sauce and poured over the veggies & roast.

1 2-3 lb roast
2 Tb evoo
1 sweet potato, cubed
1 baking potato, cubed
1 celery stalk, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
1 onion, cut in half
1 pkt Good Seasons Zesty Italian dressing
1 cup pasta sauce
1/2 cup red wine
1/4 cup chicken broth
salt & pepper to taste
1 tsp celery salt
1Tb minced garlic
Sear the meat in evoo, then caramelize onion & celery. Cube & slice all veggies and put in bottom of crock pot. Place meat & onion/celery mix on top. Pour wine in skillet to de-glaze bring to slow boil, then add sauce, broth & spices. Pour on top. Cook on low 8hrs. ENJOY!
1 pkt of Good Seasons Zesty Italian Dressing

Ranchero Pork Tacos

This is a super easy, yummy Mexican dish. I stumbled across this last fall in i think, Womans Day? not sure and I think they used a pork roast and who knows this is how I have been making it and it is a fav! It literally will take you 5 mins to dump a few cans in the crockpot, toss in your pork tenderloin and umm, umm good!
1 lg can Enchilada Sauce (Old El Paso)
1 can diced green chilies
pork tenderloin
1 onion, sliced thin
2 limes, juiced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (I hate cilantro, J loves so I leave off mine! He says it makes the dish!~ whatever!)
Serve with: warm corn tortillas, sour cream, shredded cheese & salsa
Dump enchilada sauce and chilies in a crock pot, add pork; spoon sauce over top. Cover and cook on low 8 to 10 hours until pork is very tender. 20 minutes before serving, toss onion slices with lime juice in a medium bowl. Let stand, 5mins. Dump into crockpot with cilantro if using let sit about 5-10mins. Serve and ENJOY!!