Taco Casserole



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This is a simple to put together dinner that you’re going to love.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit/177 Celsius

You will need an 8″ x 11″ greased baking dish. A 9″ x 13″ cake pan will also work. It will just be a little thinner.


1 pound ground beef

1 medium size onion, chopped- about 1 cup

1/3 cup sliced black olives

2 – 3 Tablespoons of your favorite taco seasoning

Salt, to taste, if your taco seasoning does not have any

1 (8oz.) can tomato sauce

1 cup sour cream

1 cup grated cheddar cheese

3 – 4 cups of your favorite nacho or taco chips


Brown the ground beef and onion. Add the black olives, tomato sauce, taco seasoning and/or salt. Mix well.

Spread half of the crushed chips in the greased baking dish. Spread the meat mixture over them. Next, spread the sour cream, cheddar cheese, and finally the rest of the chips.

Bake in your preheated oven for 30 – 40 minutes. Serve.

This will serve 4 – 6 people depending on appetite.

For the seasoning, you can just use a packet of taco mix, I used Penzeys Salsa and Pico blend along with some kosher salt.

For the chips, I used some grain free nacho chips. Make it your own and use whatever type and flavor of chip you like.

Happy eating!


Tapioca Pudding


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Tapioca pudding is an old fashioned type dessert. It’s definitely not quick to make. But it is worth it.

You need to start this the day before you are ready to cook it. The tapioca pearls need to soak overnight in water.

My husband loves tapioca pudding and his grandmother made it for him while he was growing up. So, I decided to make it for him.

I hope you enjoy!

You will need a mixer for beating the egg whites and a double boiler for cooking the pudding.


1/2 cup small tapioca pearls

2 cups water

2-1/4 cups milk

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 eggs at room temperature

Step one:

Soak the tapioca pearls in room temperature water overnight. Drain.

Step two:

In a double boiler, heat the milk just until no longer cold. Add the salt and tapioca pearls.

Stir and heat until small bubbles appear around the edges of the pan. Do not let it boil.

Turn down the heat and put a lid on the pan. Cook for an hour. The tapioca softens and gels up.

It may seem to clump up, but that’s okay. It will separate when you start mixing the rest of the

ingredients into the milk mixture.

Separate the eggs and put the egg whites into a clean bowl. In another bowl, add the egg yolks

and sugar and beat well until thick and light in color. Add a little of the milk mixture to the egg

yolks and mix well. Pour that back into the pan. Turn the heat up to medium and cook while

stirring for about 15 minutes or until the mixture is very thick.

Remove from the heat and set to the side.

Step three:

With a mixer on high, beat the egg whites until stiff. Gradually fold the egg whites into the hot

pudding mixture. Stir in the vanilla extract.

Tastes good warm or chilled.

Serves 6 to 8.



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You have most likely heard of gingerbread cookies. I’ve had gingerbread many years before ever having it made into cookies so I am pretty sure the gingerbread cake came first.IMG_20180106_134546348.jpgIt is pretty strongly flavored due to the large amount of molasses used. I love eating it with a nice big dollop of whipped cream.


You will need a 9 x 9 inch square pan.

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit/165 degrees Celsius.

Grease and flour your baking pan.

A mixer works great if you have one.



2-1/3 cups all purpose white flour or all purpose gluten free flour blend

1/3 cup sugar

1/2 cup butter or shortening~ I use coconut oil

1 cup full flavor molasses

3/4 cup hot water

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 egg



Add all the ingredients to a bowl and beat on low speed until incorporated.

Scrape sides down and beat on medium speed for a few more minutes.

Pour into the baking pan,

Bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the cake.

Makes 9 servings.

Good warm or at room temperature. Great with some freshly whipped cream.


The top of the gingerbread may look a little sunken down or wrinkly in the middle, but that’s okay. That is just what it does.

Banana Cookies




This is an old recipe I got out of an old cookie cookbook that belonged to my grandmother.

They stay nice and soft. When storing them, you may want to put a paper towel in between layers so they don’t stick together.

You will need a large mixing bowl.

You will need a tablespoon size cookie scoop or spoon for dropping the dough onto the baking sheets.

Three cookie sheets are good. If you use less, you may need to let the cookie sheets cool down in between batches.


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit/200 Celsius



1-1/2 cups flour

1-3/4 cup oats

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup butter OR coconut oil OR shortening, softened

1 egg

1 cup mashed banana

1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)



In one bowl, mix the flour, oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, sugar, and baking soda.

Add the butter, egg, banana, and vanilla extract. Mix it well and add the nuts, if you are using.

Drop the dough by cookie scoop or spoon onto cookie sheets.

Bake for 12 minutes in the preheated oven.

They may sound like they are still cooking. If so, touch the top of one or two to see if they are firm, but soft.

Take out of the oven and immediately remove them to a rack to cool.


Using a tablespoon size cookie scoop, I got 3 dozen nice sized cookies.


Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread


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This is my daughter’s favorite way to eat zucchini. This recipe makes two loaves of bread, but they don’t get very tall. I have also made it into just one loaf and it baked just fine.


You will need a grater or food processor to shred the zucchini.

You will need one or two 9″x5″ loaf pans, depending on whether you want one tall loaf or two short loaves.

If you have a stand mixer, it makes mixing it a breeze. By hand works well too.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.




3 large eggs

2 cups white sugar

1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons cooking oil

6 Tablespoons cocoa powder

1 Tablespoon creme de cocoa OR chocolate extract OR vanilla extract

2 cups shredded zucchini

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour( wheat based or gluten free 1 to 1 blend)

1 cup chocolate chips




Grease and flour one or both loaf pans. Set aside.

Add eggs to your mixing bowl and beat well. Add the sugar and oil and beat together. Next add in the creme de cocoa or extract and the cocoa powder. Once that is blended in, add the zucchini. Mix in the flour, salt, cinnamon, and baking powder. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Scrape into your prepared pan or pans.

Bake for 1 hour. Test with toothpick to see if it is done.

Remove to wire rack. Let cool in pan before removing.


Using one pan instead of two does not significantly increase the cooking time.

Blueberry Jam




Jam is a great way to use up  extra fruit. Jam is easier to make than jelly because you don’t have to make the juice and time everything exact.

I have my own blueberry bushes, but you can buy fresh or frozen and it will still yummy.


You will need five or six 1/2 pint jars. They are also known as jelly jars.

You will need lids for sealing. Either one piece sealing lids or the rings and flats.

A ladle and a food funnel would be great for filling the jars.

Water bath canner is optional.

You will need a large dutch oven.

You will also need a potato masher or something to mash the berries and a large spoon.



6 cups blueberries

4 cups white sugar

1/4 cup lemon juice



Rinse the blueberries and check for stems or bad berries. Add to the dutch oven and mash with the potato masher.

Add the sugar and lemon juice and stir well until combined.

Turn the heat on to medium high and bring to a good boil, stirring frequently.

Set the timer for 15-20 minutes and continue to stir frequently. Stir well to make sure the jam doesn’t stick on the bottom of the pan. If it boils up too much, you can turn it down a little. But, you need to maintain a good boil so don’t turn it down too low.

After 15 minutes, you can start to test for set. To do this, put a small plate in the freezer and remove it and put a bit of jam on the plate. If it does not run, it is ready. If it does, it needs to go a few more minutes.

Testing for set is optional. When you make jam, you would rather have it a little thin over too thick. If jam is overcooked, it will turn gummy as it cools.

When the jam is like you want, ladle the jam into jars. Seal.

USDA does not recommend the upside down method, which is basically sealing the jars and turning them upside down to cool. This is pretty old school and this is what I do.

There is enough acid in the sugar and added lemon juice that makes jam safe for water bath canning. These need to be processed in a water bath canner for 5 minutes.


If you want to do the upside down method and are worried about them keeping well, just store them in your fridge.





Is it the Yeast or is it the Gluten




By yeast, I mean brewer’s yeast and not nutritional yeast.

Brewer’s yeast is the type of yeast used for making bread and rolls.


It can be tricky to figure out of you have a problem with gluten or just yeast if you get gas and bloat up every time you eat bread. Even if it doesn’t seem like it should have yeast in it, it might. So you have to read your labels.

Some people have problems with both yeast and gluten.

I have problems with gluten and not yeast. I get nauseous, constipated, my hair falls out, I get rashes, etc.

So, I can eat a gluten free pizza, but I can’t eat a Milky Way candy bar. Thank you malted barley.

If you have ever proofed yeast, you see the bubbling action and that is what pretty much happens when it hits the digestive system and some people are effected severely.

You could go to the doctor and get tested or you can eliminate yeast from your diet and see if that is the culprit. If you are still having problems, go see your doctor.

In order for you to be tested accurately, you need to be eating gluten. Some doctors will diagnose based on history and symptoms, but many won’t.

Pizza Chicken


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Pizza chicken is a tasty low carb and gluten free way to enjoy pizza. Is it just like eating pizza? Of course not. But it is pretty awesome!

You will need a rectangular baking pan ~ 9″ x 13″

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit/190 Celsius

Prep time is about 10-15 minutes and cook time is about 30-35 minutes.


24 oz. of thick spaghetti or pizza sauce

3 lbs. cut up boneless chicken breasts

2 cups mozzarella cheese

Favorite pizza toppings such as pepperoni, sausage, olives, onions, mushrooms


Cut up your chicken. The larger the pieces, the longer it takes to cook. Set aside.

Pour half of the sauce into the baking pan. Top with the chicken. Add whatever you want for additional toppings. Cover with the rest of the sauce and sprinkle the cheese over the top.

Bake for 30 minutes and check a piece of chicken to make sure it is done. If not, let it cook a sew more minutes.

If you want more color to your cheese, turn it up the last few minutes to brown it a little.

A thinner sauce will still taste good. But, you will have the juices from the chicken mixing with the sauce and thin it more so a thicker sauce to start out with will work better.

This will serve 6 good size portions.

Streusel Coffee Cake


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I love a good coffee cake. It’s great with tea or coffee or milk. Have it for breakfast. It is a plain cake with a ribbon of cinnamon/sugar throughout.


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit/177 Celsius.

Grease a 9″x 9″ square baking pan.

You will need one bowl for mixing the coffee cake batter and a smaller bowl for the streusel.




2 cups flour, all-purpose or gluten free all-purpose

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup softened butter

1 cup milk

1 Tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 egg



1/3 cup cold butter

1/2 cup flour. regular all-purpose or a gluten free all-purpose flour

1/3 cup brown sugar OR white sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional



In the smaller bowl, mix the cinnamon, sugar, and flour and cut butter in until crumbly. Add nuts, if desired and set aside..

In the larger bowl, add all the ingredients and beat together until smooth. You can use a mixer or beat it by hand.

Put half the batter in the pan followed by half the streusel and spreading the remaining batter over that and sprinkling the rest of the streusel on top.

Bake for 40-45 minutes until it tests done with a toothpick.

Serves 9.



Last time I made it, I used gluten free flour and I forgot to make layers and just put all the batter in the pan and sprinkled the streusel on top. It worked out very well doing it this way.

Stuffed Pork Chops




Stuffed pork chops are really easy. They are also really tasty. I made them for my birthday dinner a little over a month ago.

I make them using my sage stuffing recipe, but you can use a mix.

Serves 4.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit/190 Celsius.

You will need a baking pan that will fit all four pork chops. It should have a cover or you will need aluminum foil.



4 thick cut pork chops, with or without the bone

1/2 recipe sage stuffing OR stuffing mix made for 3-4 servings.

Salt and pepper to season



Mix up the stuffing and set to the side.

With a knife, cut a slit along the side of each pork chop. If it is a boneless chop, make sure not to go all the way through the back side of it. You just want to make a pocket.

Divide the stuffing and stuff each chop and put in pan.

Salt and pepper the chops.

Cover the pan.

Bake 45 minutes. Juices should run clear.If not, give it a few more minutes.

Serve and enjoy!


Can be made with gluten free bread,