Hamburger Potato Casserole

This is a comfort food dish that is easy to make and you probably already have the ingredients on hand.


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 3 cups peeled and thinly sliced potatoes
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a medium skillet over medium heat, brown the ground beef and then drain fat.
  3. In a mixing bowl stir together the cream of mushroom soup, onion, milk, salt and pepper to taste.  Add in the cooked hamburger and mix well.
  4. In a 2 quart baking dish (11×17 inches), alternately layer potatoes, soup and meat mixture and then top with sprinkled cheese. Repeat layers.
  5. Bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until the potatoes are fork tender.

Easy Tuna Casserole


  • 3 cups cooked macaroni (about 1 1/2 cups dry)
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tuna, drained
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups French fried onions


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Combine macaroni, tuna and soup.  Mix well.
  3. Spread mixture in a 9×13-inch baking dish and top with cheese.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes, or until bubbly. Sprinkle with fried onions, and bake for another 5 minutes. Serve hot.

The Best Lasagna

Ingredients – I got this recipe from The Pioneer Woman Cooks but it is very similar to my Lion House Party Lasagna recipe.

This particular adapted recipe drew rave reviews from you kids.

  • 1-½ pound Ground Beef
  • 1 pound Hot Breakfast Sausage
  • 2 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 cans (14.5 Ounce) Whole Tomatoes
  • 2 cans (6 Ounce) Tomato Paste
  • 2 Tablespoons Dried Parsley
  • 2 Tablespoons Dried Basil
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 3 cups Low-fat Cottage Cheese (I added 1/4 of sour cream to the Cottage Cheese mixture)
  • 2 whole Beaten Eggs
  • ½ cups Grated (not Shredded) Parmesan Cheese — (I used what I had in the fridge which was a small bag blend of of Shredded Parmesan, Fontina,  and Asiago Cheese.  I also used this for the topping, in addition to the grated Parmesan)
  • 2 Tablespoons Dried Parsley
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 pound Sliced Mozzarella Cheese (I used 8 oz. of sliced Mozzarella and 8 oz. of sliced Sharp Tillamook because that’s what I had)
  • 1 package (10 Ounce) Lasagna Noodles
  • (add 1/2 Teaspoon Salt And 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil To Pasta Water)

Preparation Instructions

Bring a large pot of water to a boil (I added 1/2 Teaspoon Salt and 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil to water).

Meanwhile, in a large skillet or saucepan, combine ground beef, sausage, and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat until browned. Drain half the fat; less if you’re feeling naughty. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, 2 tablespoons parsley, basil and salt. After adding the tomatoes, the sauce mixture should simmer for 45 minutes while you are working on the other steps.  I did not cover the sauce while it simmered.  I simmered it on low heat until it was thick.

In a medium bowl, mix cottage cheese (and sour cream), beaten eggs, grated Parmesan, 2 more tablespoons parsley. Stir together well. Set aside. Cook lasagna until “al dente” (not overly cooked).

Gently separate the noodles while boiling. My package directions called for 8 minutes.  I boiled the noodles for 7 minutes and then drained them and rinsed them in cold water.  Lay a square of tin foil or parchment paper on the counter and lightly spray it with Pam spray so the noodles won’t stick to it.  Pat each noodle dry with paper towel and lay them on sprayed tin foil to dry.

To assemble:
Arrange 4 cooked lasagna noodles in the bottom of a baking pan (I lightly sprayed the pan), overlapping if necessary.  Spoon half the cottage cheese/sour cream mixture over the noodles. Spread evenly.  I made sure the topping didn’t go over the edge of the noodles, just close to the edges.  Cover cottage cheese with the 8 ounces of sliced mozzarella cheese. Spoon a little less than half the meat/sauce mixture over the top.  Lay the next four noodles down over the meat mixture.  Top with 8 ounces of sliced Sharp American Cheese (orange color).  Then add the remaining meat sauce to the top of this.  At this point I sprinkled my small bag of shredded Parmesan, Fontina and Asiago cheese blend that I happened to have over the lasagna.  Then I sprinkled grated Parmesan cheese to cover the entire top of the lasagna.

I put it in the fridge over night so the flavors would blend.  I took it out of the fridge at noon and let it come to room temperature, which took 4 hours.  It was a lot of lasagna and it was very cold when I took it out. I put it in a preheated 350 degree oven at 4:00 p.m. covered with tin foil and I cooked about 45 minutes, then I removed the foil and cooked about another 15 minutes until it was bubbly all over.  Watch it so the cheese doesn’t get brown on top.  I let the lasagna sit for about 15 minutes or so while I sauted the vegetables.  When we cut the lasagna, it was firm and held its shape.  I had wondered if the added the sour cream would make it too creamy, but it was perfect.

You can freeze it and cook it later or you can keep it in the fridge for 2 days before baking it.

Four Bean Chili




1 can kidney beans (15 oz.) – undrained
1 can black beans (15 .) – undrained
1 can refried beans (15 oz) – undrained
1 can Mexican style chili beans (15 oz)
1 can corn (15 oz) (optional)
1 can diced tomatoes (15 oz) – undrained
1 can tomato sauce (8 oz)
1 can chilies, chopped (4 oz) – undrained
1 cup water
1-2 pkgs. taco seasoning mix (per taste)
1 pkg. Hidden Valley Ranch dry mix
1 lb. lean ground beef
½ c. onion (finely chopped)

Brown meat and onion. Put in large cooking pot and add all remaining ingredients (Do not drain) Simmer for 20-30 min. You can also brown the meat and onion, then combine with all remaining ingredients in a large crock pot on high for 2-3 hours.  Serve with favorite toppings of cheese, chopped onion, Fritos, sour cream, etc.

Kielbasa and Cabbage Skillet

Photo/recipe credit:
  • 2 pounds fully cooked Polska kielbasa, cut in half lengthwise, then cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 head cabbage, coarsely chopped
  • 1 large sweet onion, cut into large pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dijon or brown grainy mustard
  1. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick sauté pan over medium-high and add kielbasa. Cook, without stirring for 1 minute. Then stir occasionally for about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate with a slotted spoon.
  2. In the same pan with some of the rendered kielbasa fat, add the cabbage, onion, garlic, sugar, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Mix in the vinegar and mustard; add the sausage back to the pan and cook for another 2 minutes to heat through. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
  4. Serve immediately on its own or over mashed potatoes.

Honey Glazed Chicken

I found this wonderful recipe at


  • 2 lbs of diced uncooked chicken breast
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 TB butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3 TB lemon juice
  • 2 TB soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger


  1. Heat oven to 350. In a shallow dish combine the flower and seasonings. Dip each piece of chicken in flour mixture and coat evenly.
  2. Melt 2 TB butter in a shallow baking dish, large enough to accommodate chicken in a single layer. Arrange chicken in pan and bake uncovered for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
  3. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt remaining butter and add honey, lemon juice, soy sauce and ginger.
  4. After chicken has baked the 30 minutes, turn each piece over and pour sauce mixture evenly over chicken. Bake another 30 to 40 minutes basting frequently.
  5. Serve over rice. I usually double the sauce ingredients to make more to serve over the rice.

Crusty Macaroni and Cheese

Recipe source:

Crusty Macaroni and Cheese

Time: 1 hour 15 minutes


  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 12 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
  • 12 ounces American cheese or cheddar cheese,  coarsely grated
  • 1 pound elbow pasta, boiled in salted water until just tender, drained, and rinsed under cold water
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
  • Salt
  • 2/3 cup whole milk


1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Use one tablespoon butter to thickly grease a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Combine grated cheeses and set aside two heaping cups for topping.

2. In a large bowl, toss together the pasta, cheeses, cayenne (if using) and salt to taste. Place in prepared pan and evenly pour milk over surface. Sprinkle reserved cheese on top, dot with remaining butter and bake, uncovered, 45 minutes. Raise heat to 400 degrees and bake 15 to 20 minutes more, until crusty on top and bottom.

Yield: 8 to 12 servings.

Ilene’s Three Cheese Stuffed Shells










This isn’t the best photo but these were sure delicious!  I got this recipe from my friend Ilene after she brought some over to me for dinner.


  • 1 (16 ounce) package jumbo pasta shells
  • 4 cups large curd cottage cheese
  • 12 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 pinch garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 26 ounces Classico® Tomato and Basil Sauce (or Bertolli)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


Cook shells according to package directions. Place in cold water to stop cooking. Drain.

Mix together cottage cheese, mozzarella cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, eggs, and garlic powder. Rub the dried herbs in the palms of your hands to pulverize them, and stir into the cheese mixture. Stuff mixture into the shells.

Spread 1/3 of pasta sauce in the bottom of a 15 x 10 inch pan. Place shells open side up, and close together in pan. Spread remaining sauce over top, and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 25 to 35 minutes, or until bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Slow Cooker French Dip Au Jus Sandwiches













If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month. –Theodore Roosevelt

This is the recipe we had tonight for Todd’s birthday that you all liked so much.  It’s so simple and so good.  You can doll it up however you want by adding green peppers and onions or whatever else you like but this is the recipe:


  • 3 1/2 to 4 pounds rump roast
  • Sliced provolone cheese (I buy it pre-sliced)
  • Butter for spreading on the rolls
  • 1 14-oz can Swanson’s beef broth (that was just the brand I happened to get)
  • 1 package Lipton Dry Onion Soup mix

For the rolls, the store was out of Hoagie rolls and sub rolls so I bought whole wheat Kaiser rolls and everyone liked them.  Use whatever you like.


Put the roast in the crockpot.  Sprinkle dry soup mix over the top of the roast and add the beef broth.  Put the lid on and cook on LOW for 10 hours.  You may want to check it at 7 to 8 hours because your crockpot may cook faster/higher on the low setting than mine does.  I put it in at 8 AM for a 6 PM dinner and that’s it.

When it’s done, shred the meat with a couple of forks.

Then I ladle the juice into individual containers for each person and split open the rolls. Butter the rolls and sprinkle lightly with garlic, add shredded beef, top with provolone cheese and broil until cheese is bubbly.

Broil the rolls at 500 degrees until the cheese starts to bubble.  Remove from oven and use tongs to lift the meat mixture onto the buttered side of the roll and top it with the cheesy side.  Dunk the sandwich in the juice and enjoy.

I personally think it would taste fantastic to spread softened cream cheese on one side of the roll.

Chili Skillet

I love this recipe.   

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 1/4 chopped green pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed or minced
  • 1/2 pound lean ground beef
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder or 1 to 2 tablespoons chili seasoning mix
  • 1/2 cup tomato juice
  • 1 8-oz. can kidney beans
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup uncooked long-grain rice
  • 1/2 cup frozen whole kernel corn
  • 1/4 cup cup chopped or sliced black olives, if desired
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar, longhorn or Monterey Jack cheese, lightly packed

Heat oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat.  Briefly saute onion, green pepper and garlic.  Push to side of skillet.

Add ground beef, breaking into chunks.  Saute until no longer pink.  Stir in chili powder or chili seasoning mix and cook 30 seconds.

Add tomato juice, undrained kidney beans, oregano, salt and rice.  Stir and bring to a boil.  Cover and simmer 25 minutes.

Stir in corn and olives if desired.  Cover and cook 5 more minutes.  Sprinkle cheese over top and cover just long enough to melt cheese.  Makes 2 servings.