This is an easy, go to fall favorite at our house when the mornings AND the evenings have that cool crisp feel that out last the 2-3 hours of warmth in the midday afternoons.

3-4 pounds boneless beef chuck roast, cut into 2 inch cubes
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 tablespoons garlic powder
16 ounce package baby carrots
1 cup rough chopped Vidalia onion
2 stalks celery, minced
2 cans Campbell’s Golden Mushroom soup
8 ounces sliced mushrooms
3/4 cup Marsala wine
1 (1 ounce) package Lipton onion soup

  • Preheat oven to 325°.
  • Spray a dutch oven with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Generously season the beef chunks with the FRESH ground sea salt, black pepper and garlic powder.
  • Place beef in dutch oven, cover with carrots and onions.
  • Whisk together the golden mushroom soup, Lipton soup mix and Marsala wine until well combined.
  • Pour over meat and veggies.
  • Bake completely undisturbed for 3 hours until meat is tender.
  • Serve over mashed potatoes.


This is another recipe from an old antique recipe box that became an instant keeper for our family. The flavorful meatballs and light delicate sauce make this a refreshing meal for any time of year.

Prep Time: 45 minutes Cook Time: 40 minutes Rest Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hr 30 minutes Servings: 12

1 cup torn croissants
½ cup WHOLE milk
2 LARGE eggs
1 LARGE onion, FINELY grated
+/- 1 tablespoon FRESH grated ginger
+/- 1 tablespoon FRESH ground salt, to taste
1-2 teaspoons FRESH ground nutmeg, to taste
2-3 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1 ½ teaspoons FRESH ground black pepper
3 pounds LEAN ground beef

  • Preheat the oven to 400°.
  • Grease a LARGE baking sheet. 

  • Combine bread pieces, milk, eggs, onion, ginger, salt, nutmeg, garlic, and pepper in a mixing bowl. Let stand 10 minutes until bread absorb all the milk.
  • Stir until just mixed and add ground beef mixing until well blended.
  • Shape mixture into 1-inch meatballs and place on the prepared pan. 

  • Bake 20-30 minutes in the preheated oven until browned.
  • Set meatballs aside to rest while you prepare the gravy.

3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons minced onion
5 tablespoons WONDRA flour
4 cups HOMEMADE beef broth
½ cup sour cream
1 dash cayenne pepper
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste

  • Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Sauté onion until tender, about 3 minutes.
  • Whisk in flour and cook 2-3 minutes until lightly browned.
  • SLOWLY add broth; cooking and stirring gravy 5-10 minutes until smooth and thickened. Blend in cream, cayenne pepper, and black pepper. 

  • Gently layer cooked meatballs into the gravy and SLOWLY simmer, heating through 5 minutes or so, but DO NOT BOIL.
  • Serve over wide egg noodles, mashed potatoes or rice.

NOTES: These meatballs freeze wonderfully!


DURING the depression in El Reno, a small Oklahoma town along the Mother Road aka Route 66 at Hwy 81 when hamburger meat was really expensive Ross Davis, an inventive diner owner found a way to ration the meat with the inclusion of flavorful and cheap onions that stretched the meat and built the flavor too, hence why it was called the depression burger.

The recipe has been passed down through the generations and are still made the same way today. Several other diners followed suit and a burger star was born. The burger became a national treasure and is the ugly kissing cousin to the prettier version of how burgers are served today with the grilled onions on top.

I’ve added cheese and changed the onions to shallots which give it a bit of an extra bite. By adding the cheese we have onions between the meat and cheese as well as on top of the cheese.  The key to the flavor in my opinion is to ALMOST burning the onions.

Adapted from Cook’s Country

3 shallots, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
salt and pepper
1 pound ground beef
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon avocado oil
4-8 slices cheddar cheese
Ketchup and Mustard
4 hamburger buns, toasted

  • Combine the onion slices and 1 teaspoon of salt in a large bowl, tossing to combine.
  • Transfer the onions to a colander and let sit for 30 minutes, tossing occasionally.
  • Transfer the onions to a clean dish towel, gather the edges together and squeeze out as much liquid as you can from the onions. Be sure to do this over the sink since the onions will have quite a bit of liquid in them.
  • Divide the onions into 4 separate mounds on a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Form the beef into 4 lightly packed balls.
  • Place the beef balls on top of the onion mounds and flatten the beef firmly using your palm so the onion adheres to the beef. The patties should measure 4 inches in diameter.
  • Season the beef generously with salt and pepper.
  • Melt the butter with the oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat.
  • Using a large spatula, transfer the patties to the skillet, onion side down. Cook for 6-8 minutes, until the onions turn a deep golden brown and begin to crisp around the edges.
  • Flip the burgers, then increase the heat to high and cook until well browned on the second side, about 2 minutes.
  • Add 1 or 2 slices of cheese to each burger and allow to melt.
  • Add mayo, mustard and pickles to the top buns, then place each burger on a bottom buns.
  • Serve immediately.

Originally posted July 12, 2018 / Updated May 23, 2023



Avocado oil
2 slices dense sourdough bread
+/- 1/2 cup WHOLE milk
1 pound QUALITY ground beef
1 LARGE egg, lightly beaten
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/4 cup red wine
3 1/2 cups WHOLE peeled tomatoes, hand crushed by hand
1/4 cup oil packed, chopped sun dried tomatoes
1/3-1/2 cup FINELY chopped Vidalia onion
2 LARGE cloves garlic, minced

  • Preheat oven to 450°.
  • Grease a 9×13 baking dish with oil.
  • Place the bread in a small bowl and pour enough milk to soak the bread. Allow to sit 5-10 minutes.
  • Add ground beef to medium bowl.
  • Squeeze out excess milk out of bread and crumble bread over ground beef.
  • Add egg, salt and pepper to taste.
  • Grease your hand with a bit of the oil , mix the meat mixture gently and then roll meat mixture into 10-12 meatballs, placing in greased baking dish.
  • Bake meatballs 10-15 minutes – just enough to crisp the outsides, but not entirely cook the insides.

1 tablespoon FRESH chopped parsley
1 tablespoon FRESH chopped basil
1/2 tablespoon FRESH chopped oregano
1 teaspoon FRESH chopped thyme
+/- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
4 pickled jalapeno slices (optional)
1-2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

  • Combine the wine, crushed tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, onions, garlic, seasonings to taste and pickled jalapeño if using.
  • Pour sauce over meatballs.
  • Cover with foil and bake 25 minutes.
  • Remove foil and sprinkle with cheese.
  • Return to oven and bake 10 minutes more until cheese is melted and golden.
  • Serve over pasta and enjoy!


This is another one of the several of my “new to me” recipes are courtesy of my friend Diana’s mom and grandma’s recipe boxes. This recipe 45 years old and was from her aunt, Carol Booth in 1978. I made only slight alterations to bring it into the 21st century.

SWEET & SOUR MEATBALLS yields 12-18 meatballs
3/4 pound ground beef
3/4 pound ground pork
2/3 cup cracker crumbs
1 teaspoon Johnny’s seasoning salt
2/3 cup evaporated milk

  • Preheat oven to 300°.
  • Gently combine all the ingredients together.
  • Roll into meatballs.
  • Brown meatballs (they will finish cooking through in oven) and transfer to baking dish.

13.5 ounce can pineapple tidbits
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons Bragg’s liquid aminos
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 small green pepper, chopped (OPTIONAL)

  • Drain juice from pineapple pieces into saucepan.
  • Add liquid aminos and vinegar.
  • Whisk in cornstarch until smooth.
  • Fold in green pepper if using.
  • Cook slowly until thickened.
  • Pour over meatballs.
  • Bake 20-30 minutes until heated through.


1 pound lean ground beef
1/2 pound ground pork
1/2 cup FINELY chopped onion
3/4 cup FINELY ground bread crumbs
1 tablespoon FINELY chopped FRESH parsley
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 LARGE egg, beaten
1/3 – 1/2 cup WHOLE milk
2-3 tablespoons avocado oil
24 ounces sauerkraut, undrained
1/3-1/2 cup homemade chicken bone broth

  • In a large bowl combine the ground beef, ground pork, onion, bread crumbs, parsley, salt and pepper, Worcestershire sauce, egg and milk JUST until combined. DO NOT OVERWORK.
  • Shape into meatballs.
  • Heat oil in large skillet.
  • Brown each meatball on all sides, removing to drain fat.
  • Add sauerkraut to skillet and top with browned meatballs.
  • Pour bone broth around edges.
  • Cover and simmer 20 minutes. Add more broth as necessary.
  • Top with parsley before serving.


8.5 ounce JIFFY corn bread muffin mix
1 + 1 tablespoon Pampered Chef south west seasoning
1 LARGE egg, lightly beaten
10 ounce can enchilada sauce
1 pound ground beef
16 ounce jar of your favorite salsa
4 ounce can chopped green chiles, drained WELL
1 cup shredded Mexican cheese blend

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Prepare an bake corn bread muffin mix per package directions.
  • Cool COMPLETELY, then crumble into a large mixing bowl.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of the seasoning, egg, beef and half the enchilada sauce. Mix lightly, but thoroughly.
  • Shape into golf ball size balls and place on LIGHTLY greased baking sheet.
  • Bake 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned.
  • Transfer meatballs to shallow baking dish.
  • Combine remaining enchilada sauce, salsa, chiles, 1/2 cup of the cheese and remaining taco seasoning. Pour over meatballs, turning to coat.
  • Bake another 10-12 minutes until cooked through.
  • Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
  • Serve immediately.


Cook Time: 35 minutes     Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes

1.5-2 pound top sirloin cap roast
3-4 garlic cloves, FINELY minced
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon herbes de Provence
1 tablespoon avocado oil

  • Set a roasting rack inside a rimmed baking sheet and set aside.
  • Sprinkle the salt over the garlic and form mixture into a paste.
  • Stir in the herbes de Provence and the oil, mixing all together. 

  • Remove steak from packaging and pat dry.
  • Score the fat cap—cut diagonal lines across the surface of the fat in both directions so you have a cross-hatched pattern. Take care not to cut down into the roast itself.
  • Rub the meat all over with the rub.
  • Let the meat sit for 30 to 60 minutes to take the chill off and absorb the flavors of the rub.

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Place a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat and add enough avocado oil to coat the bottom of the pan.
  • Place the meat, fat cap side down, in the pan and sear for about 3 minutes.
  • Flip and sear on the other side for an additional 3 minutes.
  • Transfer the roast to the prepared baking sheet and place in oven.
  • Roast for about 15-20 minutes per pound, or until an instant-read meat thermometer registers 140°.
  • Remove from oven and rest for at least 15 minutes before slicing and serving.

And for a bit of trivia, the consolidated history of Herbes de Provence. At first this herb blend originated in the Provence region in the south of France and just described a general multipurpose mixture of herbs grown in the Provençal region during the summer.

Then the blend grew in popularity and became a more defined herb mixture in the 1960s when Julia Child included a recipe for Poulet Sauté aux Herbes de Provence in her famous cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

Julia Child is credited with defining the mixture into what we know today and adding it to the culinary lexicon of chefs all over the world. It was in the 1970s that the French brand Ducros began packaging and selling the herbes de Provence spice mix to customers overseas.

Today you can purchase premade herbes de Provence in grocery stores by many different brands, but making your own is super easy and allows you to personalize the blend of herbs and spices to fit your personal taste or the specific dish you’re cooking. Here is my preferred combination of herbs and spices.

Herbes de Provence

1 1/2 tablespoon FRESH dried thyme
1 tablespoon FRESH dried basil
1 tablespoon FRESH dried rosemary, crushed in a spice grinder
1 1/2 tablespoons FRESH dried tarragon
1/2 teaspoon FRESH dried marjoram
1 teaspoon FRESH dried oregano
1 bay leaf, crushed

  • Add all of the herbs and spices in a mixing bowl and stir until combined.
  • Store your mixture in an airtight container and use it to season ALL of your favorite dishes.




This mouth watering slow cooked spicy beef tips & gravy is the PERFECT hearty and savory meal for a cool evening. Serve it over creamy mashed potatoes, your favorite pasta or even rice for a wonderful supper.

Prep Time 10 mins Cook Time 7 hrs Total Time 7 hrs 10 mins

2 pounds stew meat
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste (about 1 teaspoon of each)
½ teaspoon FRESH dried thyme
3-4 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1 package dry LIPTON’S onion soup mix
2 cups homemade beef broth
3 tablespoons Jalapeno ketchup
1 tablespoon Lea & Perrin’s Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 LARGE shallot, sliced into rings
2 LARGE carrots, rustic chop

  • Place stew meat in the bottom of a 6-quart slow cooker, topped by shallot rings.
  • Add salt, pepper, thyme, garlic, onion soup, beef broth, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and cornstarch to a medium bowl, whisking together well.
  • Pour over beef tips.
  • Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours.

  • At hour 5 or 6 add carrots.
  • Cook 1-2 hours more until carrots are tender.
  • Serve over rice, noodles, or mashed potatoes, and enjoy!



2 tablespoons avocado oil
1 pound lean ground beef
1 LARGE onion, diced
4-5 garlic cloves, to taste, minced
4 1/2 cups homemade beef broth
14.5 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
14.5 ounce can crushed tomatoes
2-3 tablespoons tomato paste
2-3 teaspoons Italian seasoning, to taste
FRESH ground salt and pepper, to taste
8 lasagna noodles, broken into bite size pieces
shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup (2 oz) finely shredded Parmesan cheese
8 ounces ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons chopped FRESH parsley, plus more for garnish, OPTIONAL

  • Heat one tablespoon oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  • Crumble beef into pot, season with salt and pepper to taste and cook, stirring occasionally until browned.
  • Drain fat from beef and set beef aside. 
Heat remaining oil in pot, add chopped onion and saute 2-3 minutes until it begins to soften.
  • Add in garlic and saute 30 seconds longer. 
  • Add in broth, diced tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, Italian seasoning, browned ground beef and season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  • Bring JUST to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 20 minutes.
  • While sauce is simmering prepare lasagna noodles according to package directions.
In a mixing bowl, using a fork, stir together mozzarella, Parmesan and ricotta.
    Fold cooked pasta into soup along with parsley, then thin soup with a little more broth if desired.

  • Ladle soup into bowls, dollop with a large scoop of the cheese mixture and sprinkle with chopped parsley.


  • Cheese dollop will melt well once stirred into soup.
  • Adapts well to slow cooker also


January was NATIONAL SOUP MONTH so what better time for comfort food like this warm and comforting super creamy corn and potato chowder that includes sweet Italian sausage to oomph the flavor. This sausage and corn chowder is the perfect comfort food year round, but especially in the winter. In the summer use fresh corn and in the winter, frozen corn works well!

Prep Time: 15 minutes Cook Time: 35 minutes Total Time: 50 minutes Servings: 6


1 pound Sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup sweet Vidalia onion, diced
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1 cup red pepper, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 pinch red pepper flakes
3-4 tablespoons WONDRA flour
4 cups homemade chicken broth
2 LARGE potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 cups corn (fresh, frozen, or canned depending on season)
1 teaspoon FRESH chopped oregano
1 teaspoon FRESH thyme leaves
FRESH ground salt and pepper to taste
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons FRESH chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
2 green onions, thinly sliced

  • Cook the sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat, breaking it into small pieces, until cooked through. Set aside.
  • Add the butter to the pan and let it melt.
  • Add the onion, carrots, celery and peppers cooking 7-10 minutes until tender.
  • Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, stirring well.
  • Sprinkle with the flour and cook 2-3 minutes until golden.
  • Add the broth, sausage, potatoes, corn, oregano, and thyme.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.
  • Turn off the flame.
  • Lightly whisk together the heavy cream and Parmesan until the cheese melts in.
  • Adjust seasoning to taste with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Mix in the parsley and green onions.


CROCKPOT BEEF STROGANOFF – So good and so easy. It also doubles well.

2 pounds stew meat, cubed
2 cans Condensed Golden Mushroom Soup
1 LARGE Vidalia onion, diced
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup water
8 ounces cream cheese, cut into cubes
1 teaspoon garlic salt
FRESH ground black pepper
couple dashes of Hot Paprika

  • Whisk the soup, water and Worcestershire sauce together in the crock.
  • Add salt, pepper and hot sauce, stirring to blend well.
  • Fold in meat pieces.
  • Cook on Low for 8 hours.
  • Turn heat to high and fold in cream cheese cubes.
  • Cover and cook 10 minutes.
  • Stir to combine cheese.
  • Serve over hot egg noodles.

NOTE: If you want to freeze it for a future meal, DO NOT ADD CREAM CHEESE. Wait and add it when you are ready to serve it.