Crusted Chicken is stuffed with a ooey, gooey, creamy and cheesy filling of chiles and bacon with a BIG crunch on the outside. This recipe as written was for the grill, but I’ve adapted it slightly for stove top or oven. I also changed the jalapeños to green chiles for the wimps in my family. You can also use flavored cream cheese if you want to change up the flavor a bit. The type of chip you use also adds or changes the flavor accordingly. I sometimes use Fritos or Doritos.

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 8.5 oz bag of your favorite chips – I use Kettle salt and vinegar or Lays wavy sour cream flavored chips
1/3 cup WONDRA flour
3 LARGE eggs, lightly beaten

8 ounce cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup medium cheddar cheese
4 ounce can chopped green chiles, drained WELL
1/2 cup crumbled bacon (about 8 pieces)
1 tablespoon Homemade Sweet Rub (recipe below)
2-3 tablespoons avocado oil
2-3 tablespoons butter

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Line baking sheet with parchment paper if baking.
  • Use a sharp knife to slice each chicken breast almost all the way in half creating a pocket.
  • Open the slice and press each breast flat.
  • In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, green chiles, bacon, and homemade sweet rub.
  • Spread 1/4 of the mixture onto each of the butterflied chicken breasts.
  • Fold the breasts over and press the cream cheese mixture so it is evenly distributed within the chicken.
  • Mash the chips into crumbs with a food processor or blender and pulse until the chips are broken down into fine crumbs.
  • Make a dredging station by pouring the crumbs into a shallow dish.
  • In another dish add the flour and season with a little paprika.
  • Break the eggs into a third shallow dish and beat lightly with a fork.
  • Dredge the stuffed chicken breasts into the flour first, shaking off the excess.
  • Then dip into the eggs followed by the chip crumbs, coating each side well.
  • Heat avocado oil and butter in a heavy cast iron skillet over medium high heat.
  • Gently add chicken breasts to hot oil searing each side 5-6 minutes or until cooked through depending on breast thickness OR place on baking sheet and bake 30 minutes or until cooked through.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy

¼ cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons FRESH ground Himalayan sea salt
2 teaspoons FRESH ground black pepper
2 teaspoons QUALITY smoked paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • Combine all of the ingredients for the rub in a small bowl.
  • Stir well to combine, using a fork to break up any clumps.

  • Store in an airtight container.
  • This will last in your cupboard for up to a month


2 large boneless, skinless chicken steaks
Juice and zest of 1 LARGE lemon
2 LARGE carrots, sliced diagonally
1 tablespoon avocado oil
2 tablespoons butter, 1 tablespoon melted
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon + 1 pinch red pepper flakes
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons sour cream
1/2 cup homemade chicken stock
1 teaspoon Better than Bouillon chicken base

  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Stir together the panko crumbs, mozzarella cheese, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon melted butter, FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Toss carrots with the avocado oil, FRESH ground salt and black pepper and the pinch of red pepper flakes.
  • Arrange carrots on one side of baking sheet in single layer.
  • Roast carrots for 5 minutes.
  • Pat chicken dry and generously season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Spread sour cream on each chicken steak.
  • Mound panko mixture on top of each breast, pressing firmly so that it adheres.
  • Remove baking sheet from oven and carefully arrange chicken steaks on the other side.
  • Return baking sheet to pan and roast 15-20 minutes until chicken is cooked through and the carrots are tender.
  • Whisk together melted butter and lemon juice.
  • Plate chicken and carrots.
  • Drizzle with lemon juice mixture and sprinkle with lemon zest.
  • Serve with pasta or rice pilaf.


4 slices bacon, diced
2 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved or quartered
1 LARGE shallot, FINELY chopped
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 pinch of salt, to taste
2 tablespoons Herbs de Provence seasoning
1/2 cup dried apricots, coarsely chopped
1/3 cherries, chopped

  • In a large skillet over medium to high heat cook bacon until JUST crisp.
  • Remove bacon with a slotted spoon to drain on paper toweling.
  • Add the Brussels sprouts, cut side down and saute 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the shallots, brown sugar, Herbs de Provence and a pinch of salt. Saute 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add apricots and saute 1-2 minutes longer.
  • Add cherries and mix well.
  • Sprinkle with bacon before serving.

TASTE: Full of flavor.
TEXTURE: Crunchy, yet soft and chewy – very satisfying.
EASE: Easy to Moderate.
APPEARANCE: Appetizing and visually appealing.
PROS: Great for a company meal.
CONS: None that I found!


2 boneless pork steaks
1 tablespoon avocado oil
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 cups Brussels sprouts, washed, trimmed and halved
2 CRISP apples, cored, peeled & diced
3 LARGE green onions, sliced thin and divided
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons bourbon
1 teaspoon better than bouillon chicken base
1/2 cup homemade chicken stock

  • Pat pork steaks dry.
  • Generously season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Heat avocado oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  • Sear pork steaks 4-6 minutes per side in hot oil.
  • Transfer pork steaks to platter and keep warm.
  • Wipe out pan and add butter.
  • Add Brussels sprouts cut side down. Sear Brussels sprouts until JUST crisp on the edges.
  • Add apple and whites of green onions, cooking 2 minutes until apple are starting to soften.
  • Whisk together the chicken base, chicken stock, brown sugar and bourbon. Add to pan, cooking 5-7 minutes until sauce has thickened and apple is tender.
  • Return pork steaks to pan, turning to coat in sauce.
  • Plate pork steaks and arrange Brussels sprouts and apples over steaks.
  • Serve with mashed potatoes.
  • Garnish with green onion tops.

TASTE: Sweet & Savory
TEXTURE: Crispy edge Brussels sprouts and tender sweet apples compliment the flavorful pork.
EASE: Easy to Moderate.
APPEARANCE: Appetizing and visually appealing.
PROS: Great meal for company.
CONS: None that I found!


1 + 1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon avocado oil
2 boneless pork steaks
1 SMALL red onion, halved and THINLY sliced
1 LARGE clove garlic, FINELY minced
1/2 pound red cabbage, cored and THINLY sliced
2 LARGE apples, 1 cored & sliced the other cored and grated
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1/3 cup hot water
1 1/2 teaspoon Better Than Bouillon beef base
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 green onions, minced and separated

  • Melt 1 tablespoon butter and oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  • Pat pork steaks dry.
  • Whisk together the FRESH ground sea salt, black pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika and cayenne pepper until well blended.
  • Generously season pork steaks on both sides with the seasoning mix.
  • Add the pork steaks to the skillet searing 2-3 minutes on each side.
  • Transfer pork steaks to platter and keep warm.
  • Add the remaining butter to the skillet.
  • Add the onions and cabbage to the pan, 3-4 minutes until slightly softened and beginning to caramelize.
  • Whisk together the beef base, warm water and vinegar.
  • Add vinegar mixture to pan, stirring to blend.
  • Add apple pieces topped with the pork steaks, cover and simmer 5-6 minutes to soften apple and reheat pork steaks. MOST of the liquid should cook off, but DO NOT BURN.
  • Slice pork and serve over cabbage mix.

TASTE: Sweet & Tangy
TEXTURE: Tender caramelized cabbage, onions and apples topped with fork tender pork tenderloin. 
EASE: Moderate.
APPEARANCE: Appetizing and visually appealing.
PROS: Great meal for company.
CONS: None that I found!


I LOVE clam chowder, but honestly, it does get a bit boring. Growing up in California it was almost always served in a bread bowl or at the very least with some crusty sourdough bread, which was always tasty, but once again it was never changing so could get boring!

When I found this recipe in my TASTE OF HOME magazine I was elated for a new take on it and it sounded absolutely delicious. I have made several changes to make it to our liking and reduced its size as they had it serving 10! Plus they used the pressure cooker and I just didn’t find it necessary as long as you time preparing the potatoes while you are preparing the rest of the chowder.

4 slices peppered bacon, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
1 LARGE shallot, diced
1 SMALL stalk celery, SMALL diced
1 SMALL red pepper, diced
2 ounces chopped green chiles, drained
2 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
2 cans (6 1/2 ounce) chopped clams, drained, juice reserved
3/4 pound YUKON gold potatoes, diced
1/2 cup homemade chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons KINDERS taco seasoning
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon chopped FRESH cilantro
Shredded cheddar cheese, for garnish

  • In a large sauce pan bring salted water to a boil.
  • Add potatoes, boiling until potatoes are JUST tender.
  • Drain.
  • In a stockpot melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium high heat.
  • Add bacon, rendering until crisp. Remove to paper toweling to drain with a slotted spoon.
  • Add remaining butter to pan.
  • Add celery and shallots, sautéing 3-5 minutes until soft.
  • Add flour, mixing well.
  • Add red pepper and chiles, cooking 3-5 minutes until peppers are tender.
  • Add garlic, cooking 1 minute longer until fragrant.
  • Add clam juice and chicken stock.
  • Stir in taco seasoning, cream, clams and half of the chopped cilantro, simmering 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally until heated through and chowder has reached the desired consistency.
  • Serve topped with garnishes of choice such as bacon, chopped avocado, shredded cheese and cilantro…


July 17th was National Ice Cream Day. So I made ice cream of course 😀

Hot where you are? What better way to beat the heat than to make some homemade ice cream? The best part about this recipe is that it’s a completely no churn, soft serve recipe.  It’s so good!! It disappears pretty quickly, so why not make a double batch. It is also great to change up in flavor by using flavored Oreos, freeze dried fruit flavors or a FRESH berries coulee! This one is plain with a hint of color and chocolate sauce.

NO CHURN ICE CREAM ALA Duff Goldman serves 6

One 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract **See NOTES
Pinch kosher salt
2 cups heavy cream
Your favorite toppings, such as sprinkles, caramel syrup, etc. for serving

  • In a large bowl, whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla and salt.
    In a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream to stiff peaks, about 3 minutes.
  • Gently mix a scoop of the whipped cream into the condensed milk mixture. Fold in the rest of the whipped cream very gently. Be careful not to overmix and deflate the mixture.
  • Transfer to a freezer container or a loaf pan, smooth the top, then press a piece of wax paper against the surface. This will prevent ice crystals from forming.
  • Freeze until the ice cream is frozen and scoopable, 6 hours to overnight.
  • Scoop the ice cream into bowls and serve with your favorite toppings or with a pie or cobbler. Enjoy!

NOTE: A great alternative is using 1/2 vanilla extract and 1/2 mint. And if you are using mint, why not add some mini chocolate chips too?



2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 tablespoon PURE vanilla extract
HALF of a 3 ounce package of vanilla pudding mix (or your flavor of choice)
1/2 normal package of Oreos, crushed (flavor of choice)

  • In a bowl, whip the heavy whipping cream and whip until stiff peaks begin to form.
  • In a separate bowl, pour in 1 can sweetened condensed milk.
  • Add the vanilla and the vanilla pudding.  Mix well.
  • Add in half of the crushed Oreo cookies and mix.  
  • Pour this mix into the whipped cream, and fold it in gently.
  • In a metal loaf pan, pour about half of the mixture.
  • Add a layer of crushed Oreos, and then top with the remaining ice cream mixture.
  • Sprinkle the top with the remaining crushed Oreos.
  • Cover with press and seal or plastic wrap and freeze for 24 hours.

NOTE: Make this any flavor you want by using flavored oreos.


I always make a recipe the way it is written the first time and then adjust to our likes the next time. So, while Rodney’s recipe was really good, we did adjust it a bit. DISCLAIMER: I’m deathly allergic to mustard, so when I make things that require mustard I make it without and then pull out a portion for me before adding the mustard for him and others.

When I made this the second time it really didn’t resemble Rodney’s recipe any longer but, hubby said it was so good when he taste tested it that I didn’t even need to add the mustard at all! High praise coming from the confirmed mustard King.

The sweet, yet spicy mix of flavors makes the perfect side for ANY backyard BBQ, picnic or potluck supper!


3/4 cup Duke’s ‘Hint of lime’ mayonnaise
3/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup sweet pickle relish
1/2-1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon Pampered Chef 3 onion seasoning
Heinz yellow mustard, to taste (optional)
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste

  • Whisk everything together until well blended, tasting and adjusting as necessary. Set aside.

1 purple onion, diced
2 stalks celery, FINELY diced
1/4 cup FRESH chopped parsley
3 1/2 pounds red potatoes, peeled if desired, quartered
6 hard boiled eggs, peeled
2 green onions, minced for garnish
Paprika, for garnish

  • In a LARGE mixing bowl, toss together the celery and onion.
  • Grate eggs into the mixture and gentle mix together.
  • Bring a saucepan of salted water to a boil.
  • Add the potatoes. Reduce the heat and gently boil potatoes 15 to 20 minutes until tender.
  • Drain potatoes.
  • Add potatoes to the mixing bowl.
  • Pour dressing mix over potatoes while still warm.
  • Using a large spoon or “meat chopper” break apart potatoes into smaller pieces while mixing everything together.
  • Arrange in serving bowl.
  • Top paprika with green onions.
  • Chill until ready to serve.

NOTES: Assemble this while the potatoes are still warm so that they absorb all the flavors better.

OPTIONS: Replace the apple cider vinegar with half FRESH lemon juice and half pepperoncini juice.


5 CHEESE PASTA adapted from Red Drummond serves 8

1 pound fusilli or similar type pasta
6 slices thick-cut bacon, diced
1 tablespoon chopped FRESH thyme
1 large shallot, diced
1-2 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup grated Fontina cheese
1/2 cup W
hite Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
1/2 cup grated Gruyère cheese
FRESH ground black pepper
1 cup mozzarella balls, halved
3 green onions, sliced thin

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Add the fusilli and cook for 1 to 2 minutes less than the package instructions.
  • Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water, then drain and set aside.
  • Cook the bacon in a cast iron skillet over medium heat until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon remove to a paper towel-lined plate and remove all but 2 tablespoons of the grease from the skillet.
  • Add the thyme, shallots and garlic to the skillet and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the wine and cook until mostly evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Add the cream and heat until bubbly, 30 seconds.
  • Gradually add the Fontina, cheddar, Romano and Gruyère in handfuls, letting each combine with the cream before adding the next.
  • Add the pasta to the skillet along with a good pinch of salt and pepper. Toss everything together, thinning with the reserved pasta water if needed.
  • Divide the pasta into lightly sprayed with non stick cooking spray individual gratin dishes or 1 baking dish.
  • Place casserole on a baking sheet.
  • Divide the mozzarella pearls over the top of the pasta.
  • Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat to broil.
  • Broil 3-4 minutes on the center rack until the mozzarella pearls are brown and the pasta is bubbling.
  • Remove and garnish with the cooked bacon and sliced green onions.



Avocado oil
2 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 shallot, small diced
2 tablespoons Mascarpone cheese
1/2 pound Bucatini Pasta, prepared per package directions reserving 1 cup pasta water
1 ounce Castelvetrano Olives, diced (optional-hubby loves, I don’t)
1 lemon, juiced
1 1/2 teaspoons Calabrian Chile paste
1 zucchini, halved and sliced (optional-hubby hates)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
3 tablespoons WONDRA flour
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Heat avocado oil in a large nonstick pan over medium high heat.
  • Add the sliced zucchini (if using) in an even layer. Cook, without stirring, 1 to 2 minutes, or until lightly browned. Season with salt and pepper. Cook 1-2 minutes more, stirring frequently until softened. Transfer to a plate.
  • Wipe out the pan and add 1-2 tablespoons more avocado oil and heat over medium high heat.
  • Pat the chicken dry.
  • In a large ziplock bag add wonder flour, Italian seasoning and FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper. Shake to mix.
  • Add chicken breasts and shake to coat. Shake off excess dredging.
  • Add the seasoned chicken to the hot oil, cooking 4-5 minutes per side, or until browned and cooked through.
  • Leave any browned bits in the pan, transfer chicken to a cutting board.
  • When cool enough to handle, slice crosswise.
  • In the same pan, heat a drizzle of avocado oil on medium-high until hot.
  • Add the chopped shallot, chopped garlic, and as much of the chile paste as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until lightly browned.
  • Add the cooked pasta, lemon juice, Mascarpone cheese, browned zucchini (if using), chopped olives, and half the reserved pasta cooking water. Cook, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the pasta is well coated. If necessary, gradually add the remaining cooking water to ensure the pasta is thoroughly coated.
  • Turn off the heat.
  • Serve the finished pasta topped with the sliced chicken.
  • Garnish with the Parmesan cheese.
  • Enjoy!

NOTE: To make your own Italian seasoning use +/- equal parts of these dried seasonings, to taste: Basil, Sage, Oregano, Savory, Rosemary, Thyme & Marjoram.



Do you ever see those recipes on facebook or instagram that just look so perfect you have to try them? Or maybe they seem so so simple that it’s a no brainer. I’ve tried more than one that just didn’t live up to all the hype, BUT this isn’t one of them! Donna’s recipe for baked grilled cheese sandwiches has the same golden, crispy crust and gooey melted center you’ve always known and loved, but you can cook a HUGE batch for a crowd all at once in under 30 minutes total WITH THE ADDED BONUS OF NOT BEING TOO GREASY! I did adapt the flavoring to our likes, but the process is pretty much the same.

Adapted from the Slow Roasted Italian  Yield: 12 Sandwiches

24 slices of thick sliced bread (Texas toast or a thick sourdough are perfect)
1 cup FRESH FINELY grated Parmesan cheese
12 thick slices Baby Swiss cheese
12 thick slices mild cheddar cheese
12 slices Havarti cheese
12 slices beefsteak tomato
12 slices bacon, halved and cooked crisp
1/2 + cup unsalted butter, room temperature
Tomato soup for dipping

Preheat oven to 450°.

  • Generously butter a slice of bread.
  • Sprinkle a tablespoon of Parmesan cheese evenly over the butter and press cheese gently into the buttered surface. Place it face down on your baking sheet.
  • Place a slice of Baby Swiss cheese on each slice of bread followed by a slice of Havarti, a slice of tomato, 2 bacon slices and then a slice of cheddar.
  • Place a slice of buttered bread on top.
  • Sprinkle a tablespoon of Parmesan cheese evenly over the butter and press cheese gently into the buttered surface. Set aside and repeat until you have enough sandwiches for your crowd.
  • Bake 5 minutes until tops are golden and crusty. Watch carefully to make sure sandwiches don’t get too brown.
  • Flip sandwiches and bake another 5 minutes until second side is golden and crusty and centers are melted.


I’ve made Creme de Menthe Brownies for years, but when I found this recipe over at The Kitchen is My Playground I instantly fell in love.

The classic combination of a Grasshopper cocktail (creme de cacao and creme de menthe with cream) turned into a beautifully layered cheesecake treat is so very delicious! and a nice change from the deeper, darker and heavier brownie version.

1 1/2 cups (30-40 cookies) chocolate wafer cookie crumbs (gingersnaps are also quite good)
1/4 cup butter, melted
24 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 LARGE eggs, at room temperature
4 tablespoons white creme de cacao
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons green creme de menthe
2 drops green food coloring (optional)
2 ounces semi-sweet baking chocolate squares, chopped

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Spray a 9×9 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Combine chocolate cookie crumbs and melted butter, mixing well.
  • Press cookie crumb mixture into the baking dish. Set aside.
  • Beat cream cheese for a minute at medium speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Gradually add sugar, beating well.
  • Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.
  • Stir in creme de cacoa.
  • Scoop out 2 and a 1/2 cups of the cheesecake batter and pour it over the cookie crumb crust, spreading evenly with a spatula.
  • Stir creme de menthe into remaining cheesecake batter.
  • Using a spoon or small measuring cup to work with small amounts of batter at a time, GENTLY pour the green cheesecake batter on top of the white cheesecake batter in the baking dish. You don’t want to disturb the layers too much.
  • Bake 45 – 55 minutes.
  • Cool to room temperature and then chill over night.
  • Cut cheesecake into small bars. cutting the bars prior to putting on the chocolate drizzle helps keep the drizzle intact and pretty.
  • Microwave chocolate squares in 20 second intervals until melted, stirring after each interval.
  • Add melted chocolate to a ziplock bag and seal.
  • Snip a very tiny hole in one corner of the bag and drizzle the chocolate over the bars. 
  • Store covered in the refrigerator.