Cheesy Mexican Chicken Casserole

Cheesy Mexican Chicken Casserole

Chicken casseroleI’m not even going to try to lie about how this  dish came to be!  I made this Cheesy Mexican Chicken Casserole because a while back during a Costco shopping trip I sample a dip that was made with Lawry’s Carne Asada Seasoning.  Of course I had to buy the large industrial sized bottle of this seasoning!  I seemed like a good idea at the time!

Then the bottle of seasoning sat in my kitchen cabinet along with a shelf full of other spices for months.  It seemed to taunt me every time I opened the cupboard to grab a bottle of spice.  It said “use me I dare you!”  So I just had to find a way, other than the dip, to use this tasty seasoning.  That’s how I came up with this Cheesy Mexican Chicken Casserole!  (Well having my fridge go on the blink with a big bag of Costco chicken thighs and shredded cheddar made me super creative!)

But seriously I whipped up a tray of this Chicken Casserole and my family absolutely loved it!  There was barely any left overs.  In fact they were practically fighting over the 2 left over pieces the next day!

chicken casseroleAnd best of all it’s super easy to make!  It literally is dumped into a baking dish and baked for about an hour and it’s done!  I served it with some Mexican rice, trust me it really was a big hit! They can’t wait til I make it again!  At this rate I’m going to have to go back to Costco for another bottle of that seasoning.

So here it is, my awesome Cheesy Mexican Chicken Casserole!


 

Cheesy Mexican Chicken Casserole
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Cheesy Mexican Chicken Casserole
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Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Place chicken thighs in a large shallow baking dish
  2. Sprinkle Carne Asada Seasoning over chicken and let sit covered with plastic wrap in refrigerator for about an hour
  3. Mix cream cheese, salsa, whipping cream, and sour cream together in a bowl and pour over chicken. Make sure you cover all the pieces.
  4. Spread shredded cheddar over all.
  5. Bake in 350 degree oven for about 1 hour or until chicken is fully cooked and cheese is completely melted.
  6. Serve hot.
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Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry BarsOne of my husband’s favorite treats are blueberry cream cheese danishes, he picks up a box every time we’re at the bakery shop. That’s why I decided to make this Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars.

These bars are very easy to make.  No need to make pastry dough, not one of my favorite activities, you use refrigerated crescent dough for the pastry.  The pastry is filled with a cream cheese mixture and blueberry pie filling, with this combination how can you go wrong?

I make these bars for dessert and also serve them for breakfast.  They make a great addition to a brunch buffet too!

I like to line my baking pan with parchment paper for easier clean up, but you don’t have to.  Instead of lining the pan with parchment you can spray the pan with cooking oil.

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars

Ingredients:

2 Tubes refrigerated crescent roll dough – any brand

2 Packages (8oz. each) Cream Cheese, softened

1/2 Cup Sugar

1 Large Egg

1 Tsp. Vanilla Extract

1 Can Blueberry Pie Filling

1/2 Stick Butter, melted

1/4 – 1/2 Cup Sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line 9″x1 3″ baking pan with parchment paper

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry BarsGently unroll one can of crescent dough and place it on the parchment paper.  Pinch seams closed. Make sure you don’t have any holes.  The sides of the pastry sheet can run up slightly on the pan’s sides.

 

Beat cream cheese and sugar together.  Add egg and beat well.  Mix in vanilla.

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry BarsSpread cream cheese evenly on top of the pastry dough layer.[spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

 

 

 

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry BarsSpread Blueberry Pie Filling evenly on top of the cream cheese mixture.[spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

 

 

 

 

 

Lay the second can of crescent dough over the blueberry filling.  Again pinching seams and holes closed.

Brush melted butter over the top layer.

Sprinkle sugar evenly over the top.

Bake 35 – 40 minutes or until the top layer is golden brown.


Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars
Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 Servings 30 Minutes
Cook Time
35 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 Servings 30 Minutes
Cook Time
35 Minutes
Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars
Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 Servings 30 Minutes
Cook Time
35 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 Servings 30 Minutes
Cook Time
35 Minutes
Ingredients
Servings: Servings
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line 9"x1 3" baking pan with parchment paper
  3. Gently unroll one can of crescent dough and place it on the parchment paper. Pinch seams closed. Make sure you don't have any holes. The sides of the pastry sheet can run up slightly on the pan's sides.
    Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars
  4. Beat cream cheese and sugar together. Add egg and beat well. Mix in vanilla.
  5. Spread cream cheese evenly on top of the pastry dough layer.
    Blueberry Cream Cheese Pastry Bars
  6. Spread Blueberry Pie Filling evenly on top of the cream cheese mixture.
  7. Lay the second can of crescent dough over the blueberry filling. Again pinching seams and holes closed.
  8. Brush melted butter over the top layer.
  9. Sprinkle sugar evenly over the top.
  10. Bake 35 - 40 minutes or until the top layer is golden brown.
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Baked Spinach Dip

Baked Spinach Dip

Spinach Dip

Easy and Delicious!

Need a quick and easy dip for game day? Here’s a really good dip you can throw together, your guests will love it!
My family loves this Baked Spinach Dip.  Served warm with plain pita chips, it’s awesome!

The crunchy panko topping gives this dip that extra texture that regular spinach dip is missing.

Not only is this delicious, it’s very easy to make too!  You can make it a few hours ahead of time and pop it in the oven just before serving.  I don’t recommend saving leftovers, it gets very watery, but I don’t think this will be a problem.  It’s so good I doubt you’ll have leftovers.

It’s a pretty heavy dip so you want to use thicker or sturdier items to dip.  Pita chips work great as does crostini or slices of crusty baguette.  Tortilla and potato chips don’t fare so well, they tend to break while dipping.

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

Ingredients:

2 (10 oz.) packages frozen chopped spinach – thawed
1 package cream cheese softened and cut into cubes
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded jack cheese
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 cup sour cream

1/4 cup butter – melted
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
Directions:

1.  Squeeze out as much water as you can from the thawed spinach.

2.  Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix very well.

3.  Place spinach mixture in an oven safe baking dish.

4.  Sprinkle panko over all.

5.  Bake for 20 – 30 minutes, until cheeses have melted and topping is browned.

6.  Serve warm with pita chips or whatever you want to dip.

If you want to add a bit of spice to this stir in 1 tbls. crushed red peppers to the spinach mixture.

The recipe calls for Panko which is an Asian style breadcrumbs.  If you can’t find Panko you can substitute plain breadcrumbs instead.

You can prep this ahead of time.  Store covered in the fridge and pop in the oven before serving,  this may add a few minutes to the baking time depending on how cold it is.

If you must store leftover do so in an airtight container, and be sure you use it the next day.  The longer it stays in the fridge the more watery it gets.

 

 

 

 

 

Baked Spinach Dip
Print Recipe
A baked version of everyone's favorite dip. The panko topping gives it that extra crunch missing in the regular version.
Servings Prep Time
12 People 30 Minutes
Cook Time
30 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 People 30 Minutes
Cook Time
30 Minutes
Baked Spinach Dip
Print Recipe
A baked version of everyone's favorite dip. The panko topping gives it that extra crunch missing in the regular version.
Servings Prep Time
12 People 30 Minutes
Cook Time
30 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 People 30 Minutes
Cook Time
30 Minutes
Ingredients
Servings: People
Instructions
  1. Squeeze out as much water as you can from the thawed spinach.
  2. Place all ingredients, except butter and panko, in a bowl and mix very well.
  3. Place spinach mixture in an oven safe baking dish.
  4. Stir panko in melted butter until it is crumbly.
  5. Sprinkle panko over the spinach mixture.
  6. Bake in 350 degree oven for 20 - 30 minutes, until cheeses have melted and topping is browned.
  7. Serve warm with pita chips or whatever you want to dip.
Recipe Notes

If you want to add a bit of spice to this stir in 1 tbls. crushed red peppers to the spinach mixture.

The recipe calls for Panko which is an Asian style breadcrumbs.  If you can't find Panko you can substitute plain breadcrumbs instead.

You can prep this ahead of time.  Store covered in the fridge and pop in the oven before serving,  this may add a few minutes to the baking time depending on how cold it is.

If you must store leftover do so in an airtight container, and be sure you use it the next day.  The longer it stays in the fridge the more watery it gets.

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Shrimp Scampi Cheese Dip – Delicious!

Shrimp Scampi Cheese Dip – Delicious!

Shrimp Scampi

Awesome Appetizer
Photo by Savvy Nana

This Shrimp Scampi Cheese Dip made it’s debut on our Thanksgiving Menu last year, the family loved it so much it’s now one of our faves.  We make it all the time for our Sunday night barbecues and even when we entertain.  Our guests love it just as much as we do!

It’s really simple to make and so yummy!  We used crostini for dipping,  we like the crunch, but you can use fresh baguettes or  whatever you like.  I’d avoid salted crackers though, the butter and cheeses have enough salt and dipping salted crackers may get too salty.

But do keep extra ingredients on hand, you may have to make a second bowl when you have company!

Ingredients:

8 oz. medium shrimp – peeled and roughly chopped

4 tbls. salted butter

1 tbls. minced garlic

1/2 cup white wine (if you prefer non-alcoholic you can substitute chicken broth for the wine)

1 tsp. fresh lemon juice

4 oz. cream cheese softened

1 cup sour cream

1/2 cup grated fresh parmasean cheese

1 1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese

Directions:

1.  Melt butter in pan.

2.  Saute garlic in butter until it turns slightly brown.

3.  Add shrimp and saute until shrimp starts to turn pink.

4.  Add wine.  Stir well and continue cooking until shrimp is cooked.

5.  Remove from heat and squeeze on lemon juice.  Stir.

6. Stir in cream cheese, sour cream, parmasean, and 1 cup of the mozzarella.  Reserve the 1/2 mozzarella for topping.  Mix very well.

7.   Pour into oven safe baking dish – you will be serving it in this dish.  I ran out of pretty oven safe dishes so I ended up using an aluminum pie tin.

8.  Sprinkle remaining mozzarella on top.

9.  Bake in 375 degree oven for 20 minutes or until cheese melts and starts turning brown.

10.  Serve warm with dipping bread or chips.

Shrimp Scampi
Shrimp Scampi Cheese Dip
Print Recipe
An awesome dip you and your friends will love! It's cheesey, garlicy, flavor goes great with crusty baguette slices.
Servings Prep Time
6 People 15 Minutes
Cook Time
20 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 People 15 Minutes
Cook Time
20 Minutes
Shrimp Scampi
Shrimp Scampi Cheese Dip
Print Recipe
An awesome dip you and your friends will love! It's cheesey, garlicy, flavor goes great with crusty baguette slices.
Servings Prep Time
6 People 15 Minutes
Cook Time
20 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 People 15 Minutes
Cook Time
20 Minutes
Ingredients
Servings: People
Instructions
  1. Melt butter in pan. 5. Remove from heat and squeeze on lemon juice. Stir.
  2. Saute garlic in butter until it turns slightly brown.
  3. Add shrimp and saute until shrimp starts to turn pink
  4. Add wine. Stir well and continue cooking until shrimp is cooked.
  5. Remove from heat and squeeze on lemon juice. Stir.
  6. Stir in cream cheese, sour cream, parmasean, and 1 cup of the mozzarella. Reserve the 1/2 mozzarella for topping. Mix very well.
  7. Pour into oven safe baking dish - you will be serving it in this dish. I ran out of pretty oven safe dishes so I ended up using an
    Shrimp Scampi
  8. Sprinkle remaining mozzarella on top.
    Scampi
  9. Bake in 375 degree oven for 20 minutes or until cheese melts and starts turning brown.
  10. Serve warm with dipping bread.
Recipe Notes

You can substitute chicken stock for the white wine for a non-alcoholic version.

Be sure you use FRESH Parmesan Cheese, not the dried grated one that comes in a round shaker box.

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Rock Your World with this Banana Chip Earthquake Cake!

Rock Your World with this Banana Chip Earthquake Cake!

12

 I recently started seeing pins of “Earthquake” Cakes on Pinterest.  They looked yummy!  I made me curious, what exactly is an “Earthquake” Cake?

I read descriptions about how delicious these cakes were and looked at recipes for various flavors.  The “original” seems to be a chocolate cake with shredded coconut and chopped pecans, sort of like a German Chocolate cake without the icing.  There was also a recipe for a pumpkin earthquake cake that I may try for Thanksgiving.

After looking at recipes and reading the raves people have posted about these cakes I gathered that the reason for the name is because the cake is made with a cream cheese concoction that will seep into the cake batter as it bakes.  This is what gives the top surface an uneven churned look, sort of like the sidewalk upheaval after a fairly strong earthquake.  This also results in the sweet gooey yumminess when you cut into the cake.  The name could also be due to the fact that this cake is so good it will rock your world!

I decided I should make one of these cakes, it quite easy.  But I didn’t want to make it using the recipes I found online, basically because my family does not like shredded coconut in anything, and think that pecans belong solely in their beloved Pecan Pie.  The pumpkin flavored cake wasn’t going to work for me either, the only one who likes anything pumpkin is my younger daughter and she lives in another state.  Besides, I was hungry for something with bananas and chocolate!

To make a long story short I made up my own version of the Earthquake cake.  It’s very simple to make using Duncan Hines Supreme Banana cake mix.  Instead of water I use sour cream for a moist rich cake.  The cream cheese mixture that’s layered on the cake batter seeps into the batter during baking resulting in a cake with a sweet gooey center that is oh so good!

Here’s my recipe, enjoy!

Ingredients:

1 Duncan Hines Supreme Banana Cake Mix
3 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sour cream – softened to room temp
1 stick of butter
1 package of cream cheese
1 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Cooking spray

Directions:

1.  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

2.  Generously spray a 9 x 13 baking pan with cooking spray

3.  Melt butter on the stovetop using a heavy saucepan.  You can melt it in the microwave as well, but I feel I have more control on the stovetop.

4.  Remove from heat and stir in softened cream cheese until it mostly melts.

5.  Stir in white chocolate chips. Chips don’t have to melt completely.  Set aside.

Earthquake Cake
6.  Put cake mix in a mixing bowl.  Add eggs, oil, and sour cream.  Mix until smooth.
7.  Spread cake batter evenly in oiled baking pan.
Earthquake Cake

8.  Drop dollops of the cream cheese mixture over the cake batter.  Make sure you get some around the edges.

Earthquake Cake

9.  Sprinkle chocolate chips over all.

Earthquake Cake

10.  Bake for 50 minutes.  Don’t over cook it, remove from oven after 50 minutes.  If you test the center with a toothpick the toothpick will not come out clean,  you might think the cake is not done, but it is, the center is supposed to be gooey.

Earthquake Cake

Serve warm or cold, it’s delicious either way.  My son loves it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Rock Your World with this Banana Chip Earthquake Cake!
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 Pieces 20 Minutes
Cook Time
50 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 Pieces 20 Minutes
Cook Time
50 Minutes
Rock Your World with this Banana Chip Earthquake Cake!
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
12 Pieces 20 Minutes
Cook Time
50 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 Pieces 20 Minutes
Cook Time
50 Minutes
Ingredients
Servings: Pieces
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Generously spray a 9 x 13 baking pan with cooking spray
  3. Melt butter on the stovetop using a heavy saucepan. You can melt it in the microwave as well, but I feel I have more control on the stovetop.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in softened cream cheese until it mostly melts.
  5. Stir in white chocolate chips. Chips don't have to melt completely. Set aside.
  6. Put cake mix in a mixing bowl. Add eggs, oil, and sour cream. Mix until smooth.
  7. Spread cake batter evenly in oiled baking pan.
  8. Drop dollops of the cream cheese mixture over the cake batter. Make sure you get some around the edges.
  9. Sprinkle chocolate chips over all.
  10. Bake for 50 minutes. Don't over cook it, remove from oven after 50 minutes. If you test the center with a toothpick the toothpick will not come out clean, you might think the cake is not done, but it is, the center is supposed to be gooey.
  11. Serve warm or cold, it's delicious either way. My son loves it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
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