Low Carb Cheese Crisp Nachos

These Low Carb Cheese Crisp Nachos are the most amazing appetizer – if you’re looking for a low carb option or not – you’re going to love them!

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We’re getting addicted to making cheese crisps of all kinds now. First we made these cheese crisps with sage and pine nuts. Then we made these cheese crisp meatball shooters with havarti and now these Low Carb Cheese Crisp Nachos.

Making cheese crisps is as easy as shredding some of your favorite cheese and melting it in the oven. You can form them into cups, keep them flat or just lay them over a rolling pin like we did here for a chip like effect.

This week we’re getting together with our friend Shelly to make a Mexican feast! We started with the apps, of course – nachos. Shelly made her version using french fries and we made ours using cheese crisps instead of tortilla chips.

 

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Get the girls together and there’s usually cocktails involved! It’s always more fun cooking with friends…

 

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Later in the week we’ll be following up with what we had for dinner, dessert and drinks – but let’s start with the nachos.

Start off by making the meat topping. I chose ground chicken for the filling instead of beef to keep it lighter, but beef would work great in this recipe too.

Brown the chicken in a skillet and add in some seasonings, diced green chilies, black beans and a can of Ro-Tel. If you really want to keep these really low carb you could leave out the beans, but there’s only 1/2 cup in the whole recipe…and come on…it’s nachos! A carb or two isn’t going to kill you.

 

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Once the filling is done you can set it aside and start making up your cheese crisps.

I used a Jalapéno Havarti cheese for my cheese crisps to give it a little extra spice and they turned out awesome. Place the cheese in piles on a baking sheet lined with parchment and bake for about 6 minutes.

 

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Give them a minute when they come out of the oven and then carefully lay each crisp over a rolling pin to form it’s shape.

 

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Fill the “chips” with a scoop of the meat, add some guacamole and start eating. Once you start you probably won’t be able to stop – fair warning. It’s a good thing we’re saving on the carbs with our Cheese Crisp Nachos ’cause we’re also diving into Shelly’s Skillet Frachos

These nachos are so good you’ll never miss the tortilla chip! Stay tuned this week for the rest of our Mexican dinner menu!

 

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Low Carb Cheese Crisp Nachos
makes about 24 nachos
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Ingredients
  1. 1 (8 oz.) block of Jalapéno havarti cheese, I used Castello
  2. 1 lb. ground chicken
  3. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  4. 1 teaspoon cumin
  5. 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  6. 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  7. 1 (10 oz.) can of Ro*Tel diced tomatoes with green chilies
  8. 1 (4.5 oz.) can diced green chilies
  9. 1/2 cup of black beans, rinsed
  10. Store bought guacamole
Instructions
  1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and then add in the ground chicken, breaking it up into small pieces with a wooden spoon as it browns.
  3. Once the chicken is browned, add the cumin, garlic powder and salt to the chicken and stir.
  4. Add the green chilies, Ro*Tel and the black beans to the pan and stir.
  5. Simmer for 5 minutes to cook out some of the juices in the pan and then remove from the heat.
  6. Measure out a heaping tablespoon of the shredded cheese and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment.
  7. Space each pile out so you only have 6 on the sheet at a time because they will spread as they cook.
  8. Place in the oven for 6-7 minutes.
  9. Let the cheese sit for a minute after you take it out of the oven and then with a thin metal spatula, carefully take it off the pan and lay it over a rolling pin to harden. If you want a flat crisp then just place the crisps on a wire baking rack to harden.
  10. Repeat with the rest of the cheese, you should get about 24 crisps.
  11. Fill each crisp with the chicken topping and a scoop of guacamole.
Notes
  1. You can make the cheese crisps ahead of time. Store them in a plastic container until you're ready to fill.
Mantitlement http://www.mantitlement.com/

Rumdriver

Looking for a refreshing summer drink, or something to serve besides mimosas at your next brunch? Try this twist on a screwdriver – a Rumdriver!

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I’m really getting into rum these days. Ever since my rum tasting party where I discovered that there’s a lot more to rum than Bacardi and Malibu.

I mean I know there is a whole world of rum out there, I just hadn’t really gotten into tasting it all that much. But at my rum party – I tasted them all. A whole bunch of them at least and found a few of my new favorites.

In addition to sampling and sipping on the higher quality rums I’ve also been experimenting with swapping rum out for standard liquors in well-known cocktails like a screwdriver. And I have to tell you – it worked out pretty darn good in this Rumdriver.

Whenever we go down to the shore we hit this restaurant on the water in Pt. Pleasant for lunch and drinks. They have a mean screwdriver there – when I say “mean” I am talking about unbelievable flavor and unbelievable strength. A couple of these screwdrivers and you can plop yourself in a beach chair for the rest of the afternoon. They have this huge machine that juices the oranges so all the drinks are made with fresh orange juice. Then they add a hefty amount of vodka and serve it up with a big slice of orange.

I guess it’s because the orange juice is fresh and so sweet that it totally masks the large amount of vodka they put in…but just know if you ever get there to try one that one or two is probably enough!

So in this Rumdriver, I swapped out the vodka for rum, added a few drops of orange bitters to the mix and then a splash of pineapple juice. I think that using fresh orange juice is the key, but if you don’t have it just use the best tasting orange juice you can find and you’ll have yourself a refreshing cocktail for any time of the day!

 

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Head over to Food Fanatic where you can find this recipe and a whole bunch of other amazing food and drink recipes! 

 

Lobster Corn Chowder

This Lobster Corn Chowder is one of my all time favorite things to have for dinner.

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Nice, warm summer say…a few buckets of ice cold beer on the deck…and this Lobster Corn Chowder.

This chowder isn’t one of my quick dinners that I like to make – it definitely takes a little time – but it’s definitely worth it.

When lobster goes on sale for $4.99 a pound at our grocery store we stock up like crazy at my house. Besides just eating lobster steamed with tons of butter and lemon there’s so many recipes that call for lobster but we don’t get to make them all the time.

The recipe for this chowder is from Ina Garten and we’ve been using it for years, it’s so good…here’s how it goes.

You’re going to need two big pots. One to make the “broth” and one for the soup.

In one pot start cooking up a couple of large onions in butter. 6 tablespoons of butter to be exact – get over it – it’s chowder just put it in.

Then you need to start shelling the meat from the lobsters. Not my favorite part but it only takes about 15 minutes to get through 3 lobsters.

Put the meat in a bowl and put all the shells in the stock pot with the butter and onions. Add in a bay leaf, sherry, whole milk, heavy cream and white wine and then simmer for a half an hour. This is what will become the broth in the chowder.

 

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While you’re waiting for the broth to cook, get the other pot heating up over medium heat and add in more onions, celery, diced potatoes and corn. Fresh corn is awesome if you have it but frozen works totally fine too.

 

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Once the broth is done, strain it into the pot with the potatoes and stir.

Let this cook for 15-20 minutes until the potatoes get soft and then you can add in the lobster meat.

How good does that look? If you’re a lobster fan – you’ve got to make this chowder. This chowder would also be great to make for company. You can make it in the morning and then just heat it up when it’s time to eat. They will be happy friends, I guarantee it!

 

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Lobster Corn Chowder
Serves 6
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Ingredients
  1. 3 1 1/2 lb. steamed whole lobsters, meat removed and shells reserved
For the Stock
  1. 6 tablespoons butter
  2. 3 cups chopped yellow onion
  3. 1/4 cup cream sherry
  4. 1 cup white wine
  5. 4 cups whole milk
  6. 2 cups heavy cream
  7. 1 teaspoon paprika
  8. 1 bay leaf
For the Soup
  1. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  2. 1 1/2 cups yellow onion, diced
  3. 3 cups diced yukon gold potatoes, skin on
  4. 2 cups celery, diced
  5. 3 cups frozen corn (if using fresh corn you'll need 3 ears)
  6. 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  7. 1/2 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
  8. 1/4 cup cream sherry
  9. fresh parsley for garnish
Instructions
  1. Start making the stock by melting the butter in one of the pots over medium heat.
  2. Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes until softened.
  3. Place in all of the lobster shells and stir together with the onions.
  4. Pour in the wine, milk, cream and sherry, paprkia and bay leaf. Stir and simmer on low for 30 minutes.
  5. While the stock is cooking, add the olive oil to the second pot over medium heat.
  6. Add the onions, celery, corn, potatoes, salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, until the stock is done.
  7. Place a large colander over the pot with the potatoes. Strain the broth from the stock pot into the colander over the potato and onion mixture.
  8. Stir and cook another 15 minutes until the potatoes soften and then add in the last 1/4 cup of sherry at the end.
  9. Cut the lobster meat into large pieces and then add it to the soup.
  10. Stir and let simmer for 5 minutes, just until the lobster warms up and then serve.
  11. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley.
Mantitlement http://www.mantitlement.com/

Beefy Tomato Soup

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. But all opinions here are mine.
#GetSaucy #CollectiveBias

If you need a quick and comforting dinner that you’re whole family will love this Beefy Tomato Soup is what you’re looking for!

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Soup is a regular meal in our house. Any time of the year, hot or cold, winter or summer, we still make soup.

It’s an easy one-pot meal that you can make ahead of time and have waiting for you for dinner. Add a loaf of bread or crackers and dinner is done.

The recipe for this Beefy Tomato Soup literally happened when Christie and I were emptying out the fridge – trying to avoid going to the store AGAIN and using what we had on hand in the house. Cooking all the time for Mantitlement means that one or both of us are usually at some sort of grocery store on any given day of the week. Produce has to be fresh, things are forgotten or you need extra ingredients for do-overs.

But this time we weren’t going.

Even when we say that when we “need” to go to the store our refrigerator and freezer are packed to the doors. We’re always grabbing the staples when we’re out shopping at the grocery store or at Walmart. I usually go up and down the aisles real quick and just grab whatever I think we need to keep on hand and pasta sauce is one of them.

 

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My little guy’s favorite kind of soup is tomato soup with basil – add a half a loaf of buttered bread and he’ll sit there all night. But for me, I like some sort of meat in soup – whatever it is – chicken, turkey, sausage or beef.

So I grabbed some ground beef from the freezer, cream cheese from the fridge, onions, basil and garlic from the pantry and got to work.

Usually we use crushed tomatoes to make tomato soup but this time we were out. It’s one of those things you always think you have…until you don’t. So instead I grabbed a jar of pasta sauce from the shelf. This recipe is just one of the ways I like to use spaghetti sauce in recipes as a short cut and a boost of flavor.

I started the soup by browning the meat with the onions and garlic.

Add in a few seasonings and then chicken stock and a whole jar or Francesco Rinaldi Traditional No Salt Added pasta sauce. Using the No Salt variety was perfect for this soup so that I could control the salt and seasonings that were going into it. Francesco Rinaldi is already made with the best quality tomatoes and fresh herbs so it’s perfect for a quick and delicious meal!

 

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Give it a stir and simmer for 10 minutes.

Stir in 1/2 cup of cream cheese to make it nice and thick, some fresh basil and then pour in the pasta.

 

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Put the lid on a let the soup cook for another 10 minutes until the pasta is tender and dinner is served.

Fresh basil gives this soup a really amazing flavor – but don’t run out to grab it if you don’t have it, just substitute dried basil instead.

Let me know if you have any other different ways to use your favorite pasta sauce in your recipes or you can follow and tag @FrancescoSauce on Twitter!

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Beefy Tomato Soup
Serves 6
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Ingredients
  1. 3/4 lb. ground beef
  2. 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  3. 1 onion, chopped
  4. 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  5. 2 teaspoon salt
  6. 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  7. 1 teaspoon oregano
  8. 1 (23.5) oz jar of Francesco Rinaldi Traditional No Salt Added pasta sauce
  9. 4 cups of chicken stock
  10. 1/2 cup of cream cheese
  11. 1 1/2 cup elbow macaroni or short-tubed pasta
  12. 1/4 cup fresh chopped basil, divided
Instructions
  1. In a large pot heat the olive oil over meadium heat.
  2. Add the onion and cook for 3-4 minutes until the onion gets soft.
  3. Add the ground beef, breaking up with a spoon and cook until no longer pink, then add the garlic and stir.
  4. Add the salt, pepper and oregano to the beef and stir to combine.
  5. Next pour in the chicken stock scraping the bottom of the pot as you stir, then add the jar of pasta sauce.
  6. Bring the soup to a simmer and let cook for 10 minutes.
  7. Stir in the cream cheese, using a whisk to incorporate it well, then add 1/2 of the fresh basil.
  8. Pour in the pasta, stir and let cook for another 10 minutes with the lid on.
  9. Spoon into bowls and garnish with the leftover basil.
Mantitlement http://www.mantitlement.com/

Whiskey Bacon Brownies

Want to make Dad a dessert for Father’s Day that you know he’ll love? Try making up a batch of these Whiskey Bacon Brownies.

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Whiskey. Bacon. Brownies.

That pretty much says it all, right? I’ve combined three of my favorite things into one bite-sized dessert.

So this is how my Father’s Day dinner is going to go – this steak with onion sauce, these roasted mustard potatoes and finally these Whiskey Bacon Brownies. And yes, I’m actually helping cook my Father’s Day meal this year. Now that I finally know how I’ve got to step up to the plate.

Like I’ve said many times before I’m not a dessert maker. Not a baker, not even really good at throwing cookies in the oven. That’s why for desserts I go to the experts. For this brownie recipe I went to the Cookies and Cups website and used one of her awesome brownie recipes that I knew would work good with my whiskey bacon topping.

And I was totally right.

I followed the recipe for the brownies exactly (sort of) but then added a couple of extras at the end. One large pour of whiskey was first…

 

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Next was a whole bunch of crumbled bacon…

 

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Stir that all together and then bake for 20 minutes. JUST until the center is set – I am told – so that they don’t dry out.

While the brownies are baking you can get the topping put together. This is pretty much a german chocolate cake topping…minus the coconut…plus whiskey and bacon.

As you see I follow things exactly.

Let the brownies cool all the way and then spread the topping all over the top in an even layer. Cut into squares and serve.

 

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Don’t forget to serve these brownies with a big glass of whiskey for Dad…he’s earned it!

Whiskey Bacon Brownies
Makes about 25 brownies
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For the Brownies
  1. 1 c. melted butter
  2. 1/2 c. cocoa powder
  3. 4 eggs
  4. 1 1/2 T. vanilla extract
  5. 2 c. flour
  6. 2 c. sugar
  7. 4 strips of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  8. 1 1/2 oz. whiskey
For the topping
  1. 12 oz. evaporated milk
  2. 1 1/4 c. brown sugar
  3. 4 egg yolks
  4. 1 t. vanilla extract
  5. 4 strips of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  6. 1 c. chopped walnuts
  7. 1 oz. whiskey
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add the melted butter and cocoa powder to a mixer bowl and beat until the lumps are gone.
  3. Add in the eggs an vanilla and beat until smooth.
  4. Next add in the sugar and mix, then add in the flour and mix just until it's combined.
  5. Take the bowl off of the mixer and stir in the whiskey and crumbled bacon.
  6. Pour into a 9 x 13" baking pan sprayed with cooking spray and bake for 20 minutes.
  7. While the brownies are baking you can make the topping.
  8. To a medium saucepan add the evaporated milk, brown sugar and egg yolks, Whisk and bring to a simmer for 10 minutes until thickened.
  9. Take off the heat and stir in the whiskey, bacon and walnuts and then set aside to cool.
  10. After the brownies have cooled completely, spread the topping over the top and cut into squares to serve.
Mantitlement http://www.mantitlement.com/