Hot Dog Pasta

Does anyone watch Big Bang Theory? Ever hear Sheldon talk about one of his favorite meals where his mom takes spaghetti and cuts up hot dogs into little pieces and adds it to the sauce? Well I make something very similar which makes my guy very happy. It is more sophisticated (so I tell myself) than hot dogs, and I like to think a bit healthier. I love that I can have this dish on the table in 30 minutes and leftovers taste even better.


Hot Dog Pasta: Serves 4

8oz Pasta (we like to use wagon wheels just because!)
7oz Smoked Turkey Sausage – Chopped
1 Onion – Diced
1 Zucchini – Sliced
1tsp Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper
4TB Shredded Parm

29oz Tomato Sauce
15oz Diced Tomatoes – Drained
1 Small Jar Tomato Paste
1-2tsp Dried Basil
1-2tsp Dried Oregano
1/2tsp Onion Powder
1/2tsp Garlic Powder
1tsp Sugar
Salt & Pepper

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add pasta and cook until al dente. Drain and set to the side. While the water is heating up, place a large saute pan over medium heat, add the olive oil with the zucchini & onion and some salt and pepper. Saute until the veggies are cooked through but still a bit crisp. Remove to a small bowl. Add the smoked turkey sausage to the pan – I like to cut mine into little triangles but if you want little round discs or half moons that is fine too. Let them cook a minute or two, then give a stir, once they start to get some coloring on them you can add all the sauce ingredients to the pan and bring up to a simmer. Once the sauce has come to a simmer you can add the cooked noodles to the pan (or if your pan isn’t big enough add the sauce to the pot!) and add back the veggies. Give a stir, top each serving with a tablespoon of the cheese, serve and enjoy.

And for a variation – feel free to switch up the veggies, I also like this with a head of fresh broccoli that has been lightly steamed.

WW: 9 Points Plus / serving

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Egg Roll in a Bowl

Recently I have been seeing recipes for Egg Roll in a Bowl all over the place. Message boards, pinterest, etc. it is becoming the new recipe to try, so I did after a friend posted about it on a message board. The beauty of this recipe is how simple and adjustable it is. In general it is: 1# ground meat, 1-2 bags coleslaw mix, soy sauce + toasted sesame oil. Now you know me – I couldn’t leave it alone and truly wanted it to taste like egg rolls do when I eat them which includes duck sauce!

Feel free to give this recipe a try – swap the ground chicken for sausage, pork, etc. Add / subtract ingredients that make you happy. This is basically just a real quick way to make a stir fry and thanks to the cabbage is reminiscent of an egg roll.

Egg Roll in a Bowl

Egg Roll in a Bowl: serves 4

1C Brown Rice
2C Water
1tsp Olive Oil

1lbs Ground Chicken
Pinch Red Pepper Flakes
1TB Fresh Ginger – Minced/Grated
3tsp Toasted Sesame Oil
1-2 Coleslaw Mix Bags (found in the salad area of your grocery store, you want approx 1# +/-)
2TB Soy Sauce
1TB Lime Juice
2TB LaChoy Teriyaki Sauce
1TB Chicken Stock
1/4C Duck Sauce

In a small sauce pot put in the rice, water, salt and olive oil – cover and bring to a boil, stir once, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and let the rice do its things until all of the water has absorbed into the rice. Remove from the heat, leave covered for a few minutes, then fluff it up with a fork.

While the rice is cooking you can get the rest going. In a large saute pan over medium to medium-high, heat 1tsp of the Toasted Sesame Oil, red pepper flakes and ginger, once the pan is hot add the chicken with some salt and pepper and cook until the chicken is completely cooked. Drain if necessary and set to the side. Place the pan back on the heat with the remainder of the oil and add the coleslaw mix to the pan – don’t worry I know it looks like a lot but it will shrink down as it cooks. let it cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, then add the soy sauce, teriyaki, lime juice, chicken stock and duck sauce. Add the chicken back to the pan and cook another minute or two.

Put some rice in a bowl, top with the egg roll mixture and serve and enjoy!

WW: 9 Points Plus / serving

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Grilled Acorn Squash

I refuse to acknowledge that it is getting colder when it comes to using the grill – until there is snow in my way I will probably still be grilling! I made some of my go to BBQ Chicken Thighs and knew I needed a veggie to go with it. I looked through my crisper and found an acorn squash and decided I would give it a try on the grill. I prepared it the same way I do for the oven and the result was a delicious perfectly cooked squash to go with my chicken. I really love the grill marks too and caramelized bits on the squash.


Grilled Acorn Squash: Serves 2-3

1 Acorn Squash – approx 6-8″ in Diameter
2tsp Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper

Cut the squash in half through the stem, scoop out the seeds and pulp. Brush the olive oil onto the cut sides of the squash and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Wrap each half with tightly with tin foil. I turned my grill onto high and placed the wrapped squash, cut side down, on the top rack of my grill. I grilled for 45 minutes but you will know they are done and ready when you can easily pierce the skin and squash flesh with a steak knife (like going through butter!).

Remove from the grill, carefully unwrap, take a large spoon and scoop out the squash from the skin, serve and enjoy!

Tip: I really like to top mine with a dollop of sour cream!

WW: 1 Points Plus / serving

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Lemon Pepper Mahi Mahi

Has anyone else noticed that the price for seafood has more then doubled in the last 6-8 months?! This really throws a wrench in my love of recipes with shrimp or in my favorite salmon dish with sauteed asparagus. I just cannot justify paying 30-40$ for a bag of shrimp that I got not too long ago for 14$ so I have been doing without but this past week I just had to have seafood of some sort so I was searching the seafood aisle when I found some Mahi Mahi for less than an arm and a leg.

I grabbed some asparagus and I decided I would try Lemon Pepper seasoning with my mahi mahi and boy was it a good decision! Simple – 3 ingredients and about 6-7 minutes in a pan.


Lemon Pepper Mahi Mahi: Serves 2

2 Fillets of Mahi Mahi – about 6 oz. Each
1tsp Lemon Pepper Seasoning
2tsp Olive Oil

First – put a skillet over medium heat and add the oil to the pan. While the pan heats up sprinkle the seasoning over both sides of the filets. Now put the fillets in a single layer in the pan and cook for approximately 3-4 minutes then flip and cook for another 3-4 minutes until the fish is cooked through and flakes easily. Remove from the pan, serve and enjoy!

I personally recommend serving with some sauteed or roasted asparagus (I just tossed my asparagus in the skillet once the mahi mahi was finished with some olive oil) and simple brown rice cooked in water with a splash of olive oil and some salt.

WW: 4 Points Plus / serving

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Beef Stroganoff

For years I have thought about trying beef stroganoff, but darn near every recipe I saw had mushrooms as a main ingredient and they are not an ingredient I am particularly fond of.  As I was trying to think about what to have for dinner I was mentally running through the items in my fridge and kept coming up with zucchini, onion and beef.  It was at that moment a light bulb went off that I was going to make my own version of stroganoff – one without mushrooms but with zucchini and onions.

This dish reminds me a lot of a dish from my childhood – Creamy Chicken & Mushroom Egg Noodle Casserole but was a bit healthier with the addition of the sauteed vegetables. I recommend giving this dish to some picky eaters as there are no large chunks of vegetables but you know they are there and you are getting their benefits.

Beef Stroganoff

Beef Stroganoff: Serves 4

8oz Whole Wheat Egg Noodles
1lbs Ground Beef – I use 93/7
1 Large Onion – Diced
1 Large Zucchini – Shredded & Squeezed of excess liquid (approx 3-4C shredded)
1tsp Olive Oil
1/2-1tsp Garlic Powder
Salt & Pepper
1 Can Campbells Condensed Mushroom Soup – 98% FF
1/4C Sour Cream – I use Daisy’s Light
1/4C Chicken Stock – FF or Water

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the egg noodles until al dente, drain and set to the side. In a skillet over medium heat add the olive oil with the onions and some salt and pepper, cook for 2 minutes until they start to soften then add the zucchini with more salt and pepper. After another 2 minutes add the ground beef and sprinkle with the garlic powder and more salt and pepper, brown the meat with the veggies and once completely browned put the whole mixture into a large colander and push out excess liquid – the zucchini and beef will give off juices that make it kinda soupy so you want to get rid of these, I just used the back of my spoon and pushed, stirred and pushed again until most of the liquid was gone.

Add the mix back to the saute pan and add the soup, sour cream and chicken stock to it over low heat until incorporated and starting to bubble, add the noodles back in and stir around. Remove from the heat, cover with a lid and let it sit for 5-10 minutes before stirring one last time, serving and enjoying.

WW: 11 Points Plus / serving
(Note if you served a half serving it would be 5PP – I will be doing this for the leftovers with some roasted carrots on the side!)

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