Sunday, March 24, 2013

Three-Bean Turkey Chili - Hamilton Beach Recipe

It's still pretty darn cold here in Michigan, which means it's still time for Chili!  This Three-Bean Turkey Chili sounds delicious!  It's packed with lots of things that are healthy for you, and has a little bit of a "kick" too!  Did I mention, it just "looks" delicious too?!  I can almost smell it.......

For this hearty Three-Bean Turkey Chili recipe, click here.
For more great Hamilton Beach slow cooker recipes, click here.

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How to Easily Make Any Recipe Gluten-Free - Guest Post by Bridgette Sandorford

How to Easily Make Any Recipe Gluten-Free
Eating a gluten-free diet can be difficult: There seems to be gluten in just about all your favorite foods! Yet you know you can't eat gluten, either because you have  a sensitivity or because you are trying to eat an overall healthier diet that is lower in carbs.
You don't have to resign yourself to eating broccoli and lettuce for every meal. You can enjoy many of your favorites by making some simple substitutions. Here are a few ideas for how you can make any recipe gluten-free:
Substitute the Flour
The primary ingredient in most recipes that contains gluten is the flour. You can easily fix this by substituting a gluten-free flour in the recipe. Some options may include:
  • Almond flour
  • Coconut flour
You will have to experiment with the ratios as you may not be able to substitute these flours one-for-one for typical all-purpose flour.
Opt for Flourless
You can get around the problem of the flour by omitting it from the recipe completely. Of course, this won't be an option for many dishes. However, you can easily find recipes online for flourless cake (, flourless brownies ( and flourless cookies ( Search online to find flourless options of your favorite desserts.
Swap Out the Breadcrumbs
Sweet foods aren't the only ones harboring gluten. Savory fried treats often use breadcrumbs and batters that contain gluten. You can still enjoy crispy fried chicken and fish by making some simple swaps. You can use crushed nuts like almonds or make crumbs out of a gluten-free cereal. You can also bake instead of fry, which will make the dish healthier, as well.
Use Gluten-Free Condiments
Sauces and marinades like teriyaki, alfredo, or marsala can contain hidden gluten. There are ingredients that are added to thicken the sauces or to give them flavor, and these often contain gluten. You can easily swap these out for gluten-free varieties that you find in the grocery store. Just be sure to always read the labels! Yeast and "natural flavors" are found in a lot of these items.
Use Alternative Core Ingredients
You can enjoy "pasta" that's not really pasta and put a sandwich on a "bun" that's not really a bun. Try using spaghetti squash or spiralizing a zucchini for a healthy, gluten-free pasta dish, or wrap up your sandwich in a piece of lettuce instead of a bun. You'll have a naturally gluten-free dish that doesn't require any recipe substitutions or experiments.
Eating gluten-free doesn't have to be difficult. You can easily make any recipe gluten-free by simply following these basic tips.
How do you make recipes gluten-free? Share your tips in the comments!
About the Author:
Bridget Sandorford is a freelance food and culinary writer, where recently she’s been researching culinary arts schools in Michigan. In her spare time, she enjoys biking, painting and working on her first cookbook. 
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Monday, March 18, 2013

No Fail Barbecue Beef - Guest Post by 365 Days of Slow Cooking

This awesome 7 Ingredient recipe for "No Fail Barbecue Beef" comes from guest blogger, Karen Peterson of 365 Days of Slow Cooking.  With 7 Ingredients, you really can't go wrong!

Karen Petersen is a stay at home who began her slow cooking adventures in January 2009.  She decided to try 365 different slow cooker recipes over the course of one year.  She used her blog ( to chart her progress and post the recipes, ratings and pictures.  After the initial year of slow cooking, she continued blogging and developing new recipes.  In March 2012, her cookbook "365 Days of Slow Cooking"  was published.  She enjoys thinking of new and innovative recipes for the slow cooker.  She plans to write another cookbook in the future.

No Fail Barbecue Beef
Doesn't that look delicious?!!!!  For this recipe, please head on over to 365 Days of Slow Cooking by clicking here.
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Sunday, March 17, 2013

Falling Into You by Jasinda Wilder - Book #Review and #Giveaway

Before I begin, let me lead with a couple things.....

Jasinda Wilder is a very dear friend of mine and is an amazingly talented author.

*This book contains strong language and sexual content, so the book is not intended for those under 18 or those offended by this type of nature.  Please do not read ahead if this type of thing might offend you.

Now, with that being said.....this is one of the most amazing books I have ever read!

Even though Jasinda is my friend, she pulled me in a long time ago when she started her Big Girls Series and then really grabbed me when she wrote Wounded. When I read Falling Into You.....I melted! What a BEAUTIFUL Book!!!! 

If you've ever been loved...
If you've ever been in love...
If you ever hope to be loved...
If you've ever been hurt...
If you've ever loss someone you love...
If you've ever been scared...
If you've ever felt alone...
If you've ever felt guilty...
If you've ever felt a burden...
If you've ever felt like you can't feel any lower...
If you've ever felt like you can't feel....
Then this book is for you.

There were so many aspects of this book I could relate to. I don't want to spoil anything for you because the twists and turns in this book are meant to make you feel real, raw emotions and I'm so happy no one spoiled it for me before I read it. Grab your tissues, pull up a blanket, read and let yourself feel the beauty of this book. Did I mention the sex in this book? Jasinda's way with words are amazing! So eloquently written.

I'm sure Jasinda must have a continuation of this book planned for the future......can't wait to see what's next for Nell.

You can find this book in the following places:

Amazon US click here.
Amazon UK click here.
Barnes and Noble click here.
Kobo click here.
iTunes click here.'s GIVEAWAY TIME!!!!!!  Jasinda has graciously offered 3 awesome prizes!

1 lucky winner will win a $25 Amazon Gift Card plus a signed copy of Falling Into You.
2 winners will win a $10 Amazon Gift Card plus a signed copy of Falling Into You.

Rules and Conditions: You must enter the giveaway below through the Giveaway Tool. You must be 18 or older to enter and a U.S. Resident.  Prize winners will be contacted via email and will have 48 hours to respond and claim their prize before a new winner is chosen.

*Disclosure: I am not being compensated for this giveaway.  All opinions expressed here are entirely my own and may differ from others'.
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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Healthy Cooking With Your Slow Cooker - Guest Post

Healthy Cooking With Your Slow Cooker

Planning meals can be stressful enough.  Why add more pressure with hard-to-prepare meals when a recipe can be prepared in the morning - letting your slow cooker do the work for you all day long?  You can even place everything in the slow cooker the day before, cover and put in the refrigerator overnight, to begin the slow cooking first thing in the morning. 

You may only think of your slow cooker for stews and soups, but it can be a useful tool when it comes to preparing delicious, easy and healthy meals for your any gathering.  Slow cookers can be used for a number of different dishes, from roasts to seafood to yummy desserts.  Using your slow cooker allows you the opportunity to put a little twist on your old favorites - finding you like them even better!  Here are a few ideas and tips to get you thinking about how to incorporate the slow cooker this season:

Brunch: Try a Breakfast Bake with eggs, bacon (turkey for a healthier option, cheese (low-fat preferred) and your favorite veggies.  Baking in a slow cooker can be slightly tricky but doable.  Make sure to grease the pot before adding the ingredients.  You will also want to lift and rotate the insert halfway through the baking to ensure even cooking.

The Main Course: Although most meat does not need browning, doing so will add a more developed taste to your dish.  Ground beef and turkey should always be browned before adding to a slow cooker, as a dull gray color can make your meal look less appetizing.  Wait until cooking is nearly finished to season your dish.  Add fresh herbs at the end of cooking, as they can become blackened if cooked for very long.

Veggies cook slower than most meat, so they need to go on the bottom.  Place meat on top of root veggies, like carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, celery and onions.  Veggies that add flavor, such as peppers and tomatoes need to be added at the end – about half hour prior to serve.

To speed up the thicken of sauces with flour or cornstarch at the end of cooking, increase heat to high and cook for an additional 20 to 40 minutes. Alternatively, you can drain juices from the pot and stir in corn starch.  Boil the juices in a sauce pan on the stove top, stirring to keep smooth.  Return to pot when ready.

Sides and Sauces: Glazed carrots, roasted potatoes, sauteed brussel sprouts can all be made easily in the crock pot.  Using your slow cooker for side dishes can free up space in your oven if you have multiple dishes to prepare.  For sauces, think cranberry sauce or low-fat creamy sauces for meat or seafood.  If you do plan on using a recipe that contains milk, cheese or other dairy products, be sure to add them at the end of cooking.  Condensed soups can be substituted for milk and can cook for extended times.

Whatever is on your family meal menu, consider using your slow cooker to make things a little easier for any occasion!

Guest post by Jennifer Nordwall, freelancer for and its recipe and calorie counter tools (
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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Crock Pot Chicken Chow Mein ala Mamma Maria - Guest Post from Mamma Maria's La Cucina

One of my absolute downfalls is Chineese food!  I love a good Chineese take-out!  Chicken Chow Mein is one of my favorite dishes.  I made a healthy version of this a while back, but this looks sinful and delicious!  Personally, I can't wait to try it!  You can find Mamma Maria's recipes on her Facebook page, so go give her a "like!"

A little bit about Mamma Maria......At the age of 10, Maria began cooking with her father and quickly developed a love for it!  She enjoys mix-matching different spices and ingredients in different combinations to make unique tastes. Maria is a work at home mommy who LOVES to cook!  Lucky for us, Mamma Maria has agreed to share several of her slow cooker recipes with us over the next few months!  I'm excited to share the first one with you!

Ingredients :
1 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts , cut thin 
1 bunch of celery, chopped and leaves reserved for use in dish
4 onions, peeled and sliced thin 
1 8ounce container mushrooms, sliced & chopped 
3 green onions , chopped 
3 garlic cloves, chopped fine 
1 can cream of chicken soup 
1 can chicken gravy 
1 can bean sprouts , drained 
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper 
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon parsley flakes 
1/2 cup water 
1 Tablespoon soy sauce 
additional & optional ingredients 
steamed rice 
chow mein noodles 
green onion - optional topping
sesame seeds - optional 
1 carrot, using a peeler add carrot curls to the vegetable portion of the recipe


Slice your chicken thin, add 1 teaspoon soy sauce, s&p to taste, pinch of garlic & onion powders and set aside allowing the chicken to marinate so to speak. 

Proceed to wash cut, chop all vegetables. Once finished turn the crock pot on high for 6 hours or low for 8 hours. Add the chicken , the scallions , mushrooms and the garlic, onions & celery. DONT forget the celery leaves !! They give such a wonderful added flavor ! 

Stir the mixture, then add the spices and the gravy & cream of chicken soup, the 1 Tablespoon soy sauce and 1/2 cup water, mix well. 

Cover & cook 6 hours on high. In the last 5 minutes add the drained bean sprouts and stir together ! 

Serves about 6 adults , maybe more.

Mamma Maria has step-by-step pictures on her Facebook Page, so be sure to check out the original post!
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Sunday, March 3, 2013

Slow Cooker Chili - Guest Blog Post by "The Crazy Nuts Mom"

I LOVE Chili!  Especially at this time of year, those of us in the cold weather climates need a little warming up!  This simple Recipe from Regina of The Crazy Nuts Mom has very few ingredients and steps.  It would definitely be something you can quickly get into your crock, and you might not even have to take a trip to the grocery store!

Regina Sober is the owner of The Crazy Nuts Mom and has been blogging since April 2011.  She is a married mom of two children (7 year old daughter and 5 year old son).  She is passionate about helping others stretch their budget and make the most of their own lives by learning how to use coupons, get out of debt and live a full life.

The Crazy Nuts Mom is a family friendly website that oers  information on cost savings through the use of couponing, discounts and frugal finds to help people live a fuller life within their budget, along with giving back. The Crazy Nuts Mom also shares life as a mom with family cooking tips and recipes, gardening and life stories of being a mom and the challenges of being a parent. 

 You can find her at
Slow Cooker Chili

Doesn't that look yummy?!  The recipe can be found here.  After you make it, come on back and tell me how you liked it!
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