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YUM! Loaded Mac and Cheese Bacon Cups Recipe



Loaded mac and cheese bacon cups are about to become your go-to appetizer recipe this holiday season.  Or anytime really.  Once your guests eat these, they will be requested often.

Appetizers are the best thing from a party. Sure, drinks can be fun and the chat is great but the food oh my gosh the food is the best! Because let’s be honest in what other moment would you eat bite-sized versions of comfort food you know and love? And in what other moment would it be appropriate than an adult is noshing on mac and cheese like if there was no tomorrow?

So as a proud appetizer aficionado I’m always looking for recipes that are party ready, which basically means that they need to be incredibly delicious while also being easy and simple (and bonus points if they are quick as well!).

My latest obsession (and one that has been for the past couple of years), are these loaded mac and cheese bacon cups. Friends, there’s nothing better than loaded mac and cheese bacon cups, nothing.

Best of all? You don’t need to be a pro in the kitchen to be able to make them. They are really easy + you’ll only use things that are probably already sitting in your pantry/fridge or that you already buy in a regular basis.

We are using bacon, macaroni, butter, milk, chives and cheddar cheese all combined together into a bite size cup of heaven. Yes, it’s that good. No, I’m not exaggerating even a bit.  Say it with me.  Bacon.  Macaroni and Cheese.

For me, the secret is in wrapping the mac and cheese tightly with bacon, waiting for the oven to make it a masterpiece,  and then just topping everything with more bacon and some extra chives. The result is this creamy, melty, crunchy, and oh-so-flavorful cup of macaroni and cheese held together with bacon. My only advice? When in doubt just add more bacon on top.  And make extra, you are gonna want them.

Loaded Mac and Cheese Bacon Cups

Perfect for an appetizer or starter.


8 Bacon strips

2 Cups macaroni

1 Cup cheddar cheese

3 Tbsps butter

⅓ Cup milk

1 Tbsp chopped chives

Salt and pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 370 Degrees F.

In a skillet over medium-high heat cook 2 of the bacon strips until crispy. Cut into small pieces.

In a pot, bring to boil salted water and cook the macaroni as package indicates, till pasta is al dente

Remove the heat and drain the water.

In a saucepan over medium heat melt the butter and mix with the milk.

Add the cooked pasta and stir for 3 minutes.

Grease a muffin pan, and line with the remaining bacon strips.  Fill halfway with the pasta mix, and top with the cheddar cheese.

Transfer to the oven and bake for 20 minutes.

Remove from the oven, top with the chive and the chopped bacon.

Serve and enjoy.  Yield: 6 nice sized appetizers



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Drool Over These 20 Bacon Dishes!

bacon edited

bacon edited

You had me at Bacon!  Check out these 20 mouthwatering, to-die-for, bacon recipes that will make you happy.  Can’t you smell that bacon cooking??

1. Chicken wrapped with bacon and Alfredo potatoes from A Worthey Read
2. Bacon Wrapped Steak Skewers from Family Food And Travel
3. Bacon Wrapped Chicken Bites with Mango Chutney from Simply Stacie
4. BBQ Bacon Chicken Skewers and Dipping Sauce from Just Us Four
5. Bacon Cheeseburger Meatloaf from The Kitchen Wife
6. Chicken, Bacon and Green Bean Skillet from The Classy Chapter
7. Stuffed bacon cheeseburger sliders from Flour On My Face
8. Bacon cheddar loaf from The It Mom
9. Spicy ranch bacon mac and cheese from The Rebel Chick
10. Chicken and Bacon Rice Bowl from Southern In Law
11. Toasted Corn Salad With Bacon from Teaspoon Of Goodness
12. Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Casserole from Midget Momma
13. Chicken, Bacon and Ranch Quesadilla from The Adventures Of J-Man And Miller Bug
14. King’s Hawaiian Bacon Wrapped Pork Sliders from Mama’s Mission
15. Western bacon cheeseburger with honey bbq mayo from Mama Of 3 Munchkins
16. Corn fritters with spinach and bacon salad from Sweet Little Kitchen
17. Slow-cooker cheesy bacon strata from Living Sweet Moments
18. Bacon, Tomato and Onion Bulgur from Mom Foodie
19. Bacon Wrapped Shrimp With Garlic Oil from Slick Housewives
20. Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken from My Organized Chaos

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24 Delicious Chili Recipes to Fill You Up



There is nothing more satisfying than a bowl of chili.  These are all easy to make and feed a crowd or a just a few (freeze those leftovers).  These chili recipes are sure to inspire you to add some new eats to your Fall and Winter lineup!  Happy noshing!

  1. Divine Lifestyle – Most Amazing Chili Recipe
  2. Frugal Mom Eh – Sweet Potato Chili
  3. Miami Mommy Savings – Easy Turkey Chili
  4. Blommi – Vegetarian Chili
  5. Simply Stacie – Presidential Chili
  6. Simply Stacie – Pumpkin Chili
  7. Life Love Liz – Easy Pork Chili
  8. The Nerd’s Wife – Black Eyed Pea Chili
  9. Just Us Four Blog – Slow Cooker Beef Bacon Chili
  10. More With Less Today – Roasted Cauliflower Black Bean Chicken Chili
  11. Sweet Little Kitchen – Spicy Black Bean Lentil Chili
  12. Drop the Sugar – Southwestern Low Carb Turkey Chili
  13. My Plant Based Family – Very Vegan Chili
  14. Pinch of Yum – 30 Minute Spicy Ancho Turkey Chili
  15. A Calculated Whisk – Bacon Sweet Potato Chili
  16. How to Have it All – Slow Cooker Pizza Chili
  17. Floating Kitchen – White Bean Chili with chicken and Sweet Potato
  18. Carl’s Bad Cravings – Mango Black Bean Chipotle Coke Chili
  19. Yammie’s Noshery – White Chicken Chili
  20. Oh Sweet Basil – Dr. Pepper and Chocolate Chili
  21. Self Proclaimed Foodie – Game Day Beer Chili
  22. Fav Fmily Recipes – Chili Verde
  23. Fantastical Sharing – Jalapeno Popper Turkey Chili
  24. The Yummy Life – Steak Chili
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Make Fresh Milled Flour! Pumpkin Spice Muffins and Bread Recipe #Mockmill #Baking #Fresh


Couponista Queen was compensated for this post.  All opinions and content are Couponista Queen’s own.


Check out the exclusive SALE on Mockmill Starter Kits!

Mockmill is offering 3 special Milling Starter Kits just for you, including a gluten free option with Maize, Buckwheat and Tefft!  The cost is only $179 which includes shipping!   The Mockmill alone sells for $229, and these kits include the Mockmill PLUS a variety of grains ready to use PLUS the essential book, Flour Power!  ORDER NOW Use coupon code couponistaqueen to get the $80 discount.

A KitchenAid mixer was used with my Mockmill, but it will fit most stand mixers that take attachments, including Kenmore and Elextrolux. 

When I was a kid my mom went with the lady across the street to a COOP that had a mill, and they ground their own flour.  It was the early 1970s and all kinds of stuff like this was happening, some fortunate (fresh bread, music) and some not so fortunate (macrame, velour).  Her flirtation with fresh milled flour ended when the neighbor moved, but I never forgot the light-as-air bread and cakes and the heavenly taste.  Ahhhhhhhh!  I have baked plenty of stuff from scratch through the years, always relying on the standard flours that are sold at the grocery store.  While they produce perfectly adequate results, I always wonder about how healthy that flour really is, especially in light of the recent E-Coli flour recalls.  Plus I would love to be able to try milling different things like beans, corn, etc. and incorporate some healthier options into our diet.  Enter the Mockmill.  I am NO pioneer woman who is going to be grinding stones together or sweating to grind anything let me tell you.  BUT I was reassured that in fact while this mill was not itself electric, it attached to my Kitchen Aid mixer which IS electric.  So I decided to venture into the realm of fresh milling.  I got the Mockmill and a great book Flour Power.  I am thankful for that book as I am clueless when it comes to the subject and this book was easy to understand and full of great information. I felt flour empowered! The mill itself is easy to attach to my KitchenAid.  It literally took me 30 seconds.  It is sleek and well constructed, and it perfectly marries with my mixer.

mockmill_flour_power mockmill_for_kitchenaid

Enough admiration, it was time to grind some stuff!  I started with a cup of plain white rice in order to clean the stones.  On the first use, some flaking of the stones occurs and I wanted to use something cheap that I could throw away, plus I wanted to experiment with the grinding adjustment.  After dumping that initial grind out, I was ready to mill some grain!  I decided for my first time out that I would not get TOO crazy, so I went with some Hard Red Wheat, which is great for overall use.  We love the taste and texture of whole wheat and don’t have any gluten issues in our home.  The beauty of this Mockmill is that you can grind just about ANY non oily grain.

Here’s the actual grinding in action.  I set my mixer on the recommended speed of 9 or 10 (I went with 10) and I poured the grains in the self feeding hopper.  It took a few minutes to grind the amount of flour I needed, but I went ahead and did a full pound to see how long it took and how the mixer handled the load.  I did a pretty fine grind as I wanted texture BUT fine flour to make muffins with.  It took a total of around 5 minutes to grind the full pound.  The mixer did not labor at all, and was NOT over hot at the end.  I have done worse beating heavy dough many times.
I ended up with perfect flour!  I did include gram measurements for the flour in the recipe since fresh ground flour contains more air than store bought and the measurements can be off. (Because it has not settled yet).
Here’s the recipe — and it turned out GREAT!  Definitely a keeper!  Moist and light, not heavy at all with perfect pumpkin flavor and just enough sweetness.
Pumpkin Spice Bread and Muffins Recipe with Fresh Milled Whole Wheat Flour
4 eggs
1-2/3 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Oil (I used canola.  Alternatively use another oil or substitute a cup of applesauce in place of oil.)
1 15-oz can of pumpkin
315 Grams of fresh milled whole wheat flour (This measured to approx. 2 level unpacked cups if you use store bought or if you don’t have a weight measure like this one.)
2 Tsp baking powder
1 Tsp baking soda
2 Tsp cinnamon
1/2 Tsp ginger
1/4 Tsp ground cloves
(If prefer, you can use 1 tsp cinnamon and 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice in place of the ginger and cloves)
Cinnamon and sugar mixed for topping, 1 tbsp sugar to 1/4 tsp cinnamon mixed together
Optional: 1 Cup chopped nuts, craisins, or raisins
Preheat oven to 350° F.  Line muffin tins with cupcake papers or spray the pans you will be using with cooking spray.  The baking spray works best as it contains flour.
Cream the eggs and sugar together till light.  Add the oil (or applesauce) and the pumpkin and mix together well.
Combine all dry ingredients together, then gently blend into the wet mix. Do NOT over beat the mixture as it will make the dough tough.  You just want to mix till combined (see image of mixed batter).  Fold in nuts, craisins, or raisins.
Allow batter to rest 2 or 3 minutes before filling pans.  I use an ice cream scoop to make it uniform and easy.  Fill mini and large muffins to 3/4 full.  For loaves, divide batter evenly between pans.  Top with cinnamon sugar mixture.
Bake in 350° preheated oven till done.  Start checking if done 5 minutes before these times as ovens will vary.
Mini muffins approx 20-25 minutes.  Regular muffins 30-35 minutes.  Tops will spring back when touched when they are done.
Mini loaves 40-50 minutes.  Large loaves 60-70 minutes.  To check if done, insert a toothpick in center, if clean, they are done.
Cool all in pans for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to completely cool.  Store covered 2-3 days.  Freeze to enjoy later!
Approximate Yield: 36 mini muffins, 18-24 regular muffins, 2 large loaves, 8 mini loaves.  I like to divide it and make some mini muffins, regular muffins, and mini loaves at the same time.  They can all bake together, just watch the times so you don’t over bake, and you may want to rotate half way through to even the baking.
I have to say, the Mockmill was a pleasure to use and easy.  I LOVE the idea of knowing exactly where my grains come from, and I am looking to local sources.  I can adjust the amount and the fineness of the grind with the turn of a dial, which is nice for milling all kinds of things.  I want to try corn next!  Then buckwheat!  Check out the Mockmill — Through 8/31/16 it is a great value for just $179.00 (with my coupon code couponistaqueen ) Shipping included in price!


Couponista Queen was compensated for this post.  All opinions and content are Couponista Queen’s own.

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25 Delicious Easter Dessert Recipes! #Easter #EasterDesserts #EasterRecipes



25 Delicious Easter Dessert Recipes!  WOW the crowd this year with some creative and tasty desserts for Easter.

Easter Chick Cupcakes – Thrifty DIY Diva

White Chocolate Dipped Peeps – The Joys of Boys

Reese’s Cup Easter Basket Treats – Arts & Crackers

Frozen Yogurt Easter Egg Pops – Arts & Crackers

Easter Bunny Cupcakes – Smart Party Planning

Mini Layered Funfetti Easter Cake – Artsy Momma

Spring Push Pop Cupcakes – The Country Chic Cottage

No Bake Rainbow Pie – Spend with Pennies

No Bake Bird Nest Cookies – Sugar, Spice and Family Life

Easter Bunny Rice Krispie Treats – Close to Home

Carrot Strawberries – Life Love Liz

Chocolate Egg Cups with Pudding – Life Love Liz

Krispie Treat Easter Carrots – Cincy Shopper

Easter Bunny Peeps Race Cars – Simplee Thrifty

Baked Donut Nests – A Mitten Full of Savings

Simple Spring Cupcakes – Thinking Outside the Sandbox

Pink Chocolate Covered Pretzels – Generations of Savings

Homemade Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Eggs – Family Frugal Fun

Peeps Whoopie Pies – The Country Chic Cottage

No Bake Oreo Cookie Ball Carrot Truffles – Sizzling Eats

Easter Candy Bark – The Classy Chapter

Individual Brownies with Peanut Butter Bird’s Nest Frosting – Smart Savvy Living

Easter Eggs in the Grass Chocolate Cupcakes – Savvy Saving Couple

Easter Puppy Chow Mix – Simply Stacie

Easter Macadamia Bark – Thrifty Jinxy


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Hand Dipped Chocolate Covered Strawberries for Spring or Easter

Hand Dipped Chocolate Covered Strawberries fb

Hand Dipped Chocolate Covered Strawberries Strawberry Ingredients

Hand Dipped Chocolate Covered Strawberries for Spring or Easter

This recipe will yield one dozen hand-dipped chocolate covered strawberries.

12 large strawberries
12-20 Wilton chocolate melting chips each in pink, purple, orange, blue, yellow and white -NOTE : 12 chips will cover approximately 2 average size strawberries

1. Line a cookie/baking sheet with wax paper and set aside.
2. Rinse strawberries and dry completely. Place in refrigerator to chill.
2. Place the various colors of melting chips in small microwaveable bowls.
3. Microwave each bowl one at a time, for 30 seconds on 50% power, stirring well until chocolate is melted but not too hot.  You don’t want to burn it, so watch carefully.
4. Using a spoon, drizzle the melted chocolate onto 2 strawberries, covering completely except for the stem.  Alternately, hold the green stem and dip the strawberry in the chocolate to cover it completely.    Lay on baking sheet to harden. It will not take long to “set” because the strawberries were chilled.
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for all 6 colors.
5. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days until ready to serve.
6. ENJOY!!
Anchor Hocking 6-Ounce Custard Cups with Lids, Set of 4

Wilton Orange Candy Melts, 12-Ounce

Wilton Yellow Candy Melts, 12-Ounce

Wilton White Candy Melts, 12-Ounce

Wilton Blue Candy Melts, 12-Ounce

Wilton Lavender Candy Melts, 12-Ounce

Wilton Bright Pink Candy Melts, 12-Ounce

Hand Dipped Chocolate Covered Strawberries fb

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Hazelnut Nutella Macaroon Cookie Recipe


Enjoy a tasty twist on this classic French cookie!  Hazelnut Nutella Macaroons

2/3 cup hazelnut meal*
1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder (optional)
½ teaspoon salt
2 egg whites, room temperature
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
*Hazelnut meal is sometimes called hazelnut flour. You can use almond meal in it’s place, or grind toasted hazelnuts to make your own.
1/2 cup Nutella
1 cup powdered sugar, optional
Separate your eggs and allow them to come to room temperature while preparing the rest of the ingredients.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Mix hazelnut meal, cocoa powder, powdered sugar, espresso powder, and salt until combined.
Sift into a medium bowl.
When the egg whites are room temperature, add the cream of tartar. Beat on medium speed until frothy. Gradually add sugar, beat until stiff, glossy peaks form.
Add half of the dry ingredients and fold with a rubber scraper, then repeat with the other half of the dry ingredients, being careful not to over-fold and deflate the whites.
Place the batter in a large piping bag fitted with a large round tip (Wilton #806 is a good size), and pipe circles onto lined baking sheets. Tap each baking sheet against the counter once to remove any air bubbles. Let sit 15-30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
Bake the macaroons for 15-16 minutes, rotating the pans from front to back and top to bottom halfway through baking time. The macaroons are done when they just begin to separate from the parchment. Cool completely on a wire rack.
You can use straight Nutella for the filling, or mix the Nutella with powdered sugar for a thicker paste. Use an offset spatula or an icing bag to top one macaroon, and then find a similarly sized macaroon to complete the sandwich. Repeat with all.
hszelbut nutella macaroons pinterest
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20 Cupcakes Perfect for the Christmas Holidays

Cupcakes for Christmas 1 Final

Cupcakes for Christmas 1 Final

1. Santa Cupcakes | Source: The Joys of Boys

2. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer Cupcakes | Source: Frugal Mom, Eh!

3. Easy Reindeer Cupcakes | Source: Stockpiling Moms

4. Christmas Cupcakes with Drizzled Chocolate | Source: Slap Dash Mom

5. Santa Hat Cupcakes | Source: Cincy Shopper

6. Elf Christmas Cupcake Cones | Source: Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons

7. Rudolph Cupcakes | Source: Cake Whiz

8. Christmas Wreath Cupcakes | Source: More Than a Mom of Three

9. Santa Legs “Oops” Cupcakes | Source: Simplee Thrifty

10. Christmas Tree Cupcakes | Source: Harper Mondays

11. Cupcake Ornaments | Source: Taste Better from Scratch

12. Tootsie Tree Christmas Cupcakes | Source: Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons

13. Adorable Rudolph the Reindeer Cupcakes | Source: Crafty Morning

14. Snowman Cupcakes | Source: A Mitten Full of Savings

15. Buddy the Elf High Hat Cupcakes | Source: Lady Behind the Curtain

16. Hot Cocoa Cupcakes | Source: Life with 4 Boys

17. Sugar Cookie North Pole Cupcakes | Source: Thrifty Jinxy

18. Santa Hat Cupcakes | Source: Frugal Mom, Eh!

19. Rudolph Christmas Cupcake Cones | Source: Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons

20. Marshmallow Snowman Cupcakes | Source: Southern Girl Ramblings

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25 Delicious Recipes for the Grill you will want to make now


25 Summer Grilling Recipes

The barbecue grill is an icon of summer, but a barbecue can be way more than a backyard get-together featuring burgers and hot dogs. Grilling gives vegetables and meats and even desserts and fruits a delicious char and wonderful smoky flavor.  Not even your stovetop grill pan can give you the same flavors as the outdoor versions, so branch out and find some new grilling recipes to take advantage of outdoor cooking.  What type of grill is better, charcoal or gas? Well that depends on what you want to do.  Gas grills give you more temperature control with accuracy and quick adjustments, and features like warming racks can be employed.  My preference is classic charcoal for the pronounced smokiness that can’t be duplicated, especially with the addition of wood chips like mesquite, hickory, apple, etc.  Whatever your choice, check out these 25 awesome recipes for the grill and enjoy a delicious meal.

1. Grilled Fish Tacos with Lime Cabbage Slaw from Cooking Classy
2. Grilled Brown Sugar Chili Pork Tenderloin from Katie’s Cucina
3. Grilled Potatoes with Rosemary Smoked Paprika from Cookin’ Canuck
4. Grilled London Broil from Spicy Southern Kitchen
5. Loaded Nachos on the Grill from Passion for Savings
6. Grilled Avocado and Vegetable Tacos from Two Peas and Their Pod
7. Cilantro Lime Chicken Wings from Casa De Crews
8. Grilled BBQ Chicken Potato Skins from The Recipe Rebel
9. Grilled Turkey and Rice Stuffed Bell Peppers from Chili Pepper Madness
10. Grilled BBQ Shrimp from How to Feed Aloon
11. Grilled Tex Mex Chicken Burgers with Hot Pepper Corn Relish from A Farmgirl’s Dabbles
12. Grilled Steak and Feta Wrap from Recipe Geek
13. Grilled Buffalo Turkey Meatball Subs from Little Leopard Book
14. Grilled Strip Steak with Onion Sauce from Man Titlement
15. Honey Sriracha Butter Grilled Corn from Rasa Malaysia
16. Grilled Steak Fajitas from Veggie Balance
17. Grilled Basil Garlic Chicken Breasts from A Family Feast
18. Grilled Balsamic Vegetables from iFOODreal
19. Grilled Pork Chops with Spicy Balsamic Grilled Peaches from Foodiecrush
20. Grilled Brussels Sprouts from SugarDish Me
21. Perfect Grilled Asparagus from Or Whatever You Do
22. Grilled Corn on the Cob with Herb Butter from A Food Centric Life
23. Grilled Lemon Tarragon Chicken from Small Batch Treats
24. Southwest Grilled Salmon with Blueberry Corn Salsa from Recipe Runner
25. Bacon Wrapped Chicken Legs from The Weary Chef

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Spinach, Mozzarella and Mushroom Stuffed Burgers


These Spinach, Mozzarella and Mushroom Stuffed Burgers are delicious and easy to make.  I use high quality Zaycon Fresh 93/7 ground beef to make sure that you get a delicious and healthy burger that doesn’t shrink up to a little bitty nothing.  Find out MORE about Zaycon Fresh foods and find out how you can save more than 30% off grocery prices when you order online and pick up at a location near you!


Spinach, Mozzarella and Mushroom Stuffed Burgers

Serves: 4

Prep Time: 10 Min

Cook Time: 8- 10 Min



1 Lb 93/7 Zaycon Fresh Ground Beef

1/2 Cup White Button Mushrooms

1/2 Cup Fresh Spinach

1/4 Cup Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

1/4 Tsp. Garlic Powder

1/4 Tsp. Onion Powder

1 Pinch Salt

Extra spinach, cheese and mushrooms for garnish.  




Chop mushrooms and spinach into small pieces.  Add in mozzarella.  In large mixing bowl mix ground beef, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and 1/4 of the mushroom mixture.  Separate the beef mixture into 4 equal balls. Pinch a small amount (1/4) off each ball.  Take the larger ball and make it into a round patty with a hollowed out center.  Place some of the mushroom mixture into the hollowed area.  Now take the small pinched off part and flatten to make a top to put over the stuffed burger.  Lightly push down on the sides of the top so that they sick to the filled burger, trying to seal in as much of the filling as possible.  Now cook for 8 – 10 minutes on a medium high grill or until juices run clear.  I used an indoor grill to makes these, but you could also use a pan or a outside grill.  Just make sure to adjust time accordingly and be food safe!  When burgers are done, top with extra cheese if desired.  Garnish with spinach and mushrooms and mayo as you like.  I also like to toast the buns on the grill.  Super delicious and nutritious!

Burger 6


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Ten Tasty Casserole Recipes to Try



If you LIKE this post, please share it or Repin these 10 Tasty Casserole Recipes on Pinterest

These 10 Tasty Casserole dishes will surely become favorite meals in your household.  Casseroles are an excellent way to use up those leftovers in your fridge.  In fact, once a week my mom made a “kitchen sink” casserole.  It was so named because she used everything but the kitchen sink in it.  We didn’t waste things, because we didn’t have anything TO waste.  I come by my frugal ways quite honestly!  Casseroles are easy to make, freeze well (so perfect to make ahead), and are great dinners especially in the fall or winter months.  Try some of these casserole dishes to find out which ones will be your new favorite.

  1. Twice Baked Potatoes
  2. Hamburger Hash Brown
  3. Chicken Divan – THIS has been a favorite since I was a kid!
  4. Tamale Pie Casserole
  5. Egg, Potato and Chili Casserole
  6. Bacon Ranch and Chicken Casserole
  7. Pizza Spaghetti Bake
  8. Chicken and Biscuits
  9. Acorn Squash and Wild Rice
  10. Baked Pierogi Casserole
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Fresh Dill and Egg Summer Salad recipe plus 25 more Summer Salads that you will want to eat



One of the very best parts of summer is all of the fresh produce to choose from.  Most of us eat lighter when the heat is on and salads are a great way to eat veggies and fruit while staying cool.  I wanted to share my recipe for Fresh Dill and Egg Summer Salad plus 25 more summer salads that are scrumptious.  Enjoy!

If you like this post, please share it or pin this Fresh Dill and Egg Summer Salad recipe on Pinterest

Salad Shown:  I recently made this Fresh Dill and Egg Summer Salad with mixed baby greens, soft boiled eggs, Roma tomatoes, chopped red pepper, and queso fresco.  It is topped with some roasted red pepper puree, homemade creamy dill dressing, and fresh dill.  It was so good I made it again the next day and several times since.

MORE great Summer Salads.  These are all delicious!

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Refreshing Summer #Recipe – Watermelon Granita – Plus #Win a ProFreshionals Fruit Bowl

Watermelon Granita Recipe

Couponista Queen is a Good Cook Kitchen Expert and was compensated for this post.  All opinions are 100% honest.

Watermelon Granita Recipe


IF you like this recipe, please Share it or Pin this Refreshing Watermelon Granita Recipe on Pinterest

One of my very favorite things about summertime is the fresh produce, specifically FRUIT!  I cannot drive by a farm stand or a farmer’s market without stopping and buying tons of fabulous fresh fruit and vegetables.  Storing some of it is an issue, and it can spoil before we eat it all.  This is a particular issue with melons – they are so large and juicy that keeping them fresh is a challenge because they sit in their own juice. sent me a ProFreshionals Cut Fruit Bowl to try out and it is the perfect thing to serve and store fresh cut fruit.


Whenever we buy a watermelon we get a large one, and storage is always an issue.  The ProFreshionals Cut Fruit Bowl is big – 7 quarts – so it holds enough for a crowd.  The bowl is big enough to use for serving and entertaining, and it keeps the fruit fresh longer by separating it from the juice.  Snap on the lid and store it in the fridge – perfect for snacking or for taking along to an event.

I just bought a nice watermelon and I decided to make some Watermelon Granita since the weather has been hot, hot, hot.  3 easy ingredients and and we were enjoying a cold and refreshing frozen treat in a few hours.  You can too!

Here is my recipe.

Watermelon Granita Recipe

A granita is an Italian semi-frozen dessert made from sugar and fruit or various flavorings.


4 cups cubed, seedless or seeded watermelon

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon of fresh lime juice


Add all ingredients to a blender and puree until smooth.  Pour the mixture into a 9x9x2 metal baking pan, cover with foil, and freeze for one hour.

This is an important step to ensure the proper texture >>  After an hour in the freezer, stir the mix and mash any frozen parts with the back of a fork.  Cover again and freeze the mixture until hard, about 2 more hours.  Using a fork, scrape the granita to form icy flakes and serve in a glass.  You will need to scrape hard so get your aggression out.   This recipe can be multiplied and can be made up to 3 days ahead if you plan on serving for a party.  Just make sure that the granita container is not too deep.  Cover tightly with foil and keep frozen until ready to serve.


WIN a ProFreshionals Cut Fruit Bowl



The ProFreshionals Cut Fruit Bowl is available at Bed, Bath and Beyond.  Good Cook and Couponista Queen want to make sure that you get a chance to enjoy this awesome bowl for yourself, so we are giving one lucky fan the opportunity to win one.  Just enter using the super easy form below.  Sweepstakes ends at midnight central on July 31, 2014.  Open to US residents 18+.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Couponista Queen is a Good Cook Kitchen Expert and was compensated for this post.  All opinions are 100% honest.  Want to see more ideas that use the ProFreshionals Cut Fruit Bowl?   Visit the other Good Cook Kitchen Experts for more great recipes.

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Three Cheese Spinach Stuffed Italian Burgers #Recipe PLUS Win With #GoodCook


Couponista Queen received compensation and/or promotional products for this post.  All opinions are 100% authentic.

Couponista Queen is a Good Cook Kitchen Expert, and I am excited to give you a chance to WIN what is in my kitchen drawer!  YES, that is correct.  Good Cook allowed me to select 15 items that I wanted in a kitchen drawer, and then they challenged me to create a signature recipe using as many of those items as I could.  I love Italian food, and long ago my grandma and my godmother taught me to make meatballs, so I adapted that recipe into a burger that is delicious and perfect for summer grilling.  Scroll down for the recipe, but first let me tell you how to win and give you a peek at what I selected for my Good Cook Kitchen Drawer.


Beginning June 2 (through Juny 14, 2014), visit and build your ideal kitchen drawer filled with 15 great Good Cook tools and gadgets.  You can then register a drawer every day for a chance to WIN IT!  Can’t decide?  You can also select MY Kitchen Drawer, or take a look at the Kitchen Drawers submitted by the other Good Cook Kitchen Experts and enter one for a chance to win.  Every drawer entered could win an instant prize!  You can also participate in a 5-day kitchen gadget giveaway on the Good Cook Facebook page June 2-June 7, 2014 to win even more.   During the contest, selected items on will be 25% off, and entering a drawer might get you some additional discounts!  Follow Good Cook on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for all the latest offers and great recipes.
Good_Cook_Kitchen_Drawer_add_me  ◄Look for the “Add Me” graphic to select your drawer.


Here are the tools in MY “Slice, Dice, Measure, Grate, Drain, Whip, Stir & Stuff Kitchen Drawer”

Slice, Dice, Measure, Grate, Drain, Whip, Stir & Stuff Kitchen Drawer

I selected items based on the things I use when I cook!  Plus I could not pass up that stuffed burger press and the knives.

          *Items used to create my Signature Recipe

*Coarse Cheese Grater – Grates in BOTH directions, saving your wrist that achy feeling.  And comes with a cover so you don’t catch it on things (like your knuckles) when you are searching in your kitchen drawer.

Collapsible Funnel –  Genius!  Space saver and doesn’t catch on things in the drawer.

*Stuffed Burger Press – Makes the coolest stuffed burgers (see my recipe below!) or use it to make regular patties.

Berry Colander – The prefect size to make it handy for rinsing anything small.

*Rotary Grater – I have always wanted to have fancy fresh grated Parmesan cheese.  Now I can!

*Nonstick Sandwich Knife, 5″ – Slices bread perfectly.  Enough said.
Nonstick Utility Knife – Sharp and ultra-useful.
Nonstick Santoku Knife, 5″ – This sliced my tomatoes so thin I could read a newspaper through them.  I felt like an infomercial hehe.
Nonstick Paring Knife, 4″ – Makes quick work of anything you need a small knife for.
*Nonstick Chef’s Knife, 5″ – My favorite item in the drawer!  I LOVE a great Chef’s Knife, and this non-stick version is super cool.  The spinach I chopped slid right off the blade, and the weight was perfect to handle.
*“Measure From Above” 3 Piece Liquid Measuring Cup Set – SO cool!  You can see the measurements from the top.  And it includes a supersize 4-cup measure.
*Nylon Whisk – Nylon is a great in-between silicone and  metal.  Does a nice job whipping things full of air.
*Spatula, Clear Handle with Silicone Spoon – Very easy to use, flexible, and heat resistant.
*Cheese Slicer, Adjustable – I like fresh sliced cheese the best, and this adjustable slices delivered the exact thickness I wanted.
*Instant Read Meat Thermometer with case – Food safety is a #1 priority in my kitchen and should be in yours.  This is a must have for each and every kitchen drawer.



Good Cook challenged me to create a Signature Recipe using at least 7 items from the Kitchen Drawer that I selected.  I used 10 Items from the Kitchen Drawer plus a few additional Good Cook items like the super cool Double-Sided Flip Measuring Spoon and the equally awesome Utensil Pot Clip.  The Signature Recipe I selected is an adaptation of one of my favorite meals — Spaghetti and Meatballs with Marinara Sauce and some crusty bread.  I selected the Stuffed Burger Press as part of my Kitchen Drawer, so I decided to adapt my meatball recipe into a burger.  The result was amazingly delicious and perfect for the Summer grill.  Without further ado, I present…

Three Cheese Spinach Stuffed Italian Burgers

 If you like this recipe, please share it or pin Three Cheese Spinach Stuffed Italian Burgers on Pinterest


Italian_Burger_MixBurger Mix Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef or ground sirloin
  • 1/2 pound ground Italian sausage
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 3 cloves minced garlic (1-1/2 teaspoon)
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Burger Mix Directions:

In a large bowl, beat the egg then combine everything but the meat.  Add meat then mix well.  I use my hands.  Form into a ball, then allow to rest while you mix the Spinach and Cheese filling.

Italian_Burger_Filling_and_AssemblySpinach and Cheese Filling Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup fresh spinach (1/2 cup chopped)
  • dash of salt and pepper


Combine Ricotta cheese, spinach, salt and pepper in a bowl.

Burger Assembly Directions:

Divide burger mix into 8 portions.  They will be approximately 4 oz. each.  Place a portion in the burger press, press it then turn the press over and indent the burger patty to make a pocket for the filling.  Use approximately one tablespoon of the filling and spread it to fill the cavity.  Take another portion of meat and flatten it into slight patty shape, then place it over the filling taking care to make sure that it will all be sealed in when you press the two patties together, then press them evenly and remove the patty.  Repeat until you have 4 complete burger patties.

Italian_Burger_MiscellaneousOther Ingredients:

  • Parmesan cheese to top burgers with, approx. 1/8 cup or use fresh grated for best taste
  • Fresh mozzarella cheese slices, one per burger
  • 4 hard rolls, sliced in half
  • 1-1/2 cup marinara sauce, heated

Grilling and Serving Directions:

Heat grill to medium.  Grill burgers covered for 8-10 minutes per side.  These are thick burgers and will take longer than typical.  Don’t use too high a heat or the filling will leak.    During last minute of cooking time, grill buns and top burgers with mozzarella cheese.  Check for safe internal temperature of 165° before removing from grill.  Put marinara on plate, place bottom bun then burger.  Top with additional marinara sauce then Parmesan cheese.

Goes nicely with Italian Mac ‘N Cheese with Caramelized Onions and Tomatoes, Breaded Parmesan Green Beans, or Grilled Yellow Squash with Garlic and Parmesan.


Couponista Queen received compensation and/or promotional products for this post.  All opinions are 100% authentic.




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Summer Recipe – Grilled Yellow Squash with Garlic and Parmesan



If you like this post please share it or Pin Summer Recipe – Grilled Yellow Squash with Garlic and Parmesan on Pinterest

Throw this easy side together in a flash and enjoy a tasty way to have yellow squash next time you grill out.  This is a perfect accompaniment to any grilled meat or fish, and a great way to enjoy a summer vegetable you might otherwise skip over.


2 Small Yellow Squash, cut in half lengthwise

2 tablespoons of olive oil

1/2 teaspoon of minced garlic

sea salt

cracked black pepper

Parmesan cheese











Heat grill to medium.  Combine garlic and olive oil and let sit for at least 15 minutes or until you are almost ready to grill.  Brush each top cut half of squash with olive oil.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Grill skin side down for 5 minutes.  Turn once and grill an additional 4-6 minutes until golden brown and the edges are starting to char.  Remove from grill and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  Serve immediately.  Serves 4 as a side.

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Easy Slow Cooker Recipe – Italian Mac ‘N Cheese with Caramelized Onions and Tomatoes

Warm, gooey comfort food meets the easy of the slow cooker in this Italian twist on a diner classic.


Warm, gooey comfort food meets the easy of the slow cooker in this Italian twist on a diner classic.

Warm, gooey comfort food meets the ease of the slow cooker in this Italian twist on a dinner classic. ©2014 Couponista Queen


If you Like this recipe, please share it or Pin Easy Slow Cooker Italian Mac ‘N Cheese with Tomatoes and Caramelized Onions on Pinterest

As part of their coming Build Your Kitchen Drawer Contest starting June 2 (Be on the lookout for more posts from me!) Good Cook sent me 5 essential items for your kitchen drawer and challenged me to come up with a one dish recipe that used them.  Well, challenge accepted, and I have to say we were very pleased with the results of the Easy Slow Cooker Italian Mac ‘N Cheese with Tomatoes and Caramelized Onions and I will be making this again.   Scroll down for the recipe, but first… Good Cook sent these must-haves for any kitchen drawer:

Smart Ice Cream Scoop (A new take on a classic, this scoop takes on the hardest or softest ice cream, but I used it to serve my mac ‘ n cheese and the non-stick surface made it a snap.)

Flip Measuring Spoon  (Only ONE measuring spoon to keep track of…or lose lol!  This one is very cool, flip to measure 1/2 tsp and tbsp!)

Safe-cut Can Opener (I am, no joke, can opener impaired.  Even I was able to use this one to easily and safely to open not one but two cans in a row without cursing, a new record for me.)

Egg Separator (Maybe we should call this one a “conscious egg uncoupler” instead.  I dig the way it hangs on the side of a bowl, because let’s face it, it does me no good if I drop the whole thing in.)

Pot Clip Holder (The handles on my utensils will no longer suffer the pain of my stupidity when I leave them laying on the edge of a hot pan.  Long live this pot clip!  These are going to be stocking stuffers this year.) I was able to actually use all 5 items.  No kitchen tools were harmed in the making of this recipe! Good_Cook_Cuild_Your_Kitchen_Drawer_Contest BUT a kitchen drawer is not complete with just 5 items…SO Good Cook is doing something to help all of YOU good cooks to stock your own kitchen drawer.  I was selected to build my own kitchen drawer, and beginning June 2, 2014 (and ending July 14, 2014) you will have a daily chance to enter to WIN the kitchen drawer of your choice: you can win mine (The BEST one of course!!), build your own, or select any of the other drawers built by my fellow Good Cook Kitchen Experts.  There will be also be instant win prizes and there is a 5-day giveaway event on the Good Cook Facebook page starting June 2 through June 7.   Good_Cook_Kitchen_Drawer_add_meVisit the Good Cook Facebook page May 28 for details and follow @GoodCook on Twitter!  ALL of the items I selected will be 25% off during the contest–look for the Add Me graphic to build your drawer for a chance to WIN starting June 2. Come back here on June 2 for my post with more details and my drawer selections plus a NEW recipe using the items in my Kitchen Drawer.  


Easy Slow Cooker Italian Mac ‘N Cheese with Tomatoes and Caramelized Onions

Warm, gooey comfort food meets the ease of the slow cooker in this Italian twist on a dinner classic.

Serves 6-8 as a side dish, 4 as a main dish.  Prep time approximately 15 minutes.  Cook time 90 minutes to 2 hours on low in a slow cooker.



2 tablespoons of margarine

8 Ounces uncooked Elbow Macaroni

1 15-ounce can of crushed tomatoes

1 large sweet onion, sliced thin or chopped (about 3 cups)

1 teaspoon of sugar

1 /2 to 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning to taste

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1/4-1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder to taste

1/4 teaspoon of pepper (I used white pepper)

red pepper to taste

1/4 cup water

6 ounces of Velveeta or similar loaf cheese.  Processed cheese is necessary to withstand the long heat of a slow cooker without curdling.

1 12-ounce can of evaporated milk.  I use the fat free version and it is just as good.  Do not use regular milk as it will curdle in the heat.

2 tablespoons of real butter

1 large egg

Parmesan cheese for garnish

shredded cheddar cheese for garnish

parsley for garnish


Using the 2 tbsp. of margarine, coat the inside of a cold slow cooker.  Add the uncooked pasta noodles and the can of crushed tomatoes, stirring to combine.

In a nonstick skillet on med-high heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter and add the onions.  Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of sugar and stir.  Cook 5 minutes, then reduce heat to medium and cook another 15 minutes stirring occasionally till onions are caramelized but NOT burnt.  Do not burn the sugar.  Add the cooked caramelized onions to the slow cooker.  

In the same skillet, add the evaporated milk, water, and the Velveeta cheese (cut into chunks for faster melting).  Stirring constantly, melt the cheese over low heat just until fully combined.  Do NOT let this mixture boil.  Turn off the heat, add the salt, pepper, and red pepper, and allow the mix to cool for FIVE minutes.  This is necessary to keep from cooking the egg.

While the mixture is cooling, separate a large egg.   Beat the egg white.  After the cheese mixture cools 5 minutes, add it to the slow cooker.  Add the garlic powder and the Italian seasoning and stir to combine all the ingredients.  Stir in the egg yolk.  Stir in the egg white, being careful to not over stir.  Put the lid on, turn the cooker on low, and check to see if the pasta is done after 90 minutes to 2 hours.  When done, sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese, shredded cheddar cheese, and parsley.  Refrigerate any leftovers within an hour.  Serves 6-8 as a side dish, 4 as a main.