(Family Features) The next time your loved ones crave a comforting dish that’s warming from the inside-out, turn to an all-time classic with a touch of southern flair.
Take inspiration for this Tex-Mex Beef Lasagna from season 3 of “BBQuest: Beyond the Pit,” a video series that dives into the long-held traditions, new flavors and everyday inspiration that make Texas barbecue legendary. Developed from the show by BBQuest co-host and “Hardcore Carnivore” cookbook author Jess Pryles, this tasty take on comfort food can be the perfect solution for a family meal with plenty of leftovers.
After dinner, settle in together and learn pitmaster techniques from the experts as the series follows four themes that capture the essence of Texas barbecue: legacy and tradition; creativity and innovation; Texas trailblazers; and family and community.
“Since launching BBQuest four years ago, it’s truly remarkable to see how much has changed and yet stayed the same when it comes to Texas barbecue, and that’s exactly what you see in season 3,” said Rachel Chou, Texas Beef Council’s director of consumer marketing. “There has been so much exciting innovation around cooking methods and international flavors while there’s still a huge dedication to long-held recipes and smoking techniques.”
To find more pitmaster-worthy recipes, visit BeefLovingTexans.com.
Watch video to see how to make this recipe!
Tex-Mex Beef Lasagna
Recipe courtesy of Jess Pryles on behalf of Beef Loving Texans
Total time: 60 minutes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 2 teaspoons chipotle powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 15 ounces canned corn, drained
- 15 ounces canned seasoned black beans, drained
- 10 ounces canned diced tomatoes with green chiles, drained
- 15 ounces canned red enchilada sauce
- 1 cup Mexican crema or sour cream
- nonstick cooking spray
- 12 corn tortillas
- 8 ounces shredded Mexican blend cheese
- cilantro (optional)
- green onions, thinly sliced (optional)
- Preheat oven to 375 F.
- In large pan or skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat then add onion. Cook until softened, 4-5 minutes, stirring regularly.
- Add ground beef and cook, stirring regularly, until beef has browned.
- Add kosher salt, garlic powder, cumin, chipotle powder and onion powder; stir well. Add corn, black beans and diced tomatoes. Turn heat to medium and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
- In bowl, combine enchilada sauce and crema; mix well.
- Spray casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray. Pour about 1/4 cup enchilada sauce mixture on bottom to prevent tortillas from sticking.
- Layer 2-4 tortillas across bottom then top with layer of ground beef mixture. Use ladle to spoon some enchilada sauce mixture on top, distributing evenly. Top with another layer of tortillas then repeat layers until casserole is full, 3-4 layers. Top with shredded cheese.
- Loosely cover dish with foil in tent shape to help prevent cheese from sticking then bake 30 minutes.
- Remove foil and bake 10-15 minutes until cheese is bubbly and golden brown.
- Cool 5 minutes before serving. Top with cilantro and green onions, if desired.
Beef Loving Texans
Flavorful grape recipes to take summer gatherings to the next level
(Family Features) Summertime celebrations with friends, family and neighbors are a perfect way to enjoy the sunshine, warm weather and camaraderie. To satisfy a hungry crowd, though, you’ll need recipes fit for the occasion.
Turn to a versatile signature ingredient like Grapes from California, which can be used in dishes of all kinds from refreshing salads and entrees to flavorful condiments and sweet desserts. Grapes are crisp, juicy and sweet, making them a fantastic addition of flavor and texture for a wide range of recipes. Whether fresh, sauteed, roasted, grilled or even pickled, grapes make it easy to take meals to the next level.
For example, you can start the festivities with grapes as an easy, portable and healthy snack perfect for summer days or use them as a juicy addition to this all-in-one Honey-Lime Quinoa and Grape Salad that’s ideal as a light appetizer or a meal all on its own. Follow it up (or pair it) with a summertime staple – hot dogs – given a sweet-tart twist from pickled grape relish that takes these Sweet and Tangy Pickled Grape Hot Dogs to new heights.
Dessert can’t be much easier than Creamy Vegan Grape Ice Cream as a dairy-free alternative to traditional summer sweets. Oat coffee creamer and pureed grapes are all you need to create this delicious frozen treat. Simply freezing whole grapes also makes for an easy and healthy frozen dessert.
Visit GrapesFromCalifornia.com to discover more summer entertaining inspiration.
Honey-Lime Quinoa and Grape Salad
Prep time: 15 minutes, plus at least 1 hour chill time
Cook time: 22 minutes
Servings: 6 (1 1/3 cups per serving)
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup lime juice
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1 1/2 cups quinoa
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups halved Grapes from California
- 1/2 cup minced red onion
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 tablespoons minced jalapeno pepper
- 1 large firm, ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and cut into bite-size pieces
- 1/2 cup chopped peanuts (optional)
- To make lime vinaigrette: In medium bowl, whisk olive oil, lime juice, honey, sea salt and pepper, to taste.
- To make salad: In fine mesh strainer, rinse quinoa; drain well. In medium saucepan, bring broth and quinoa to boil; reduce heat and simmer, covered, 12 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand 10 minutes then fluff with fork and let cool. Transfer to large bowl.
- Pour vinaigrette over quinoa; stir well to coat. Add grapes, onion, cilantro and jalapeno pepper; cover and chill at least 1 hour.
- Lightly stir in avocado and transfer to decorative bowl. Sprinkle with nuts, if desired.
Notes: Salad may be prepared and refrigerated up to 2 days ahead without avocado and peanuts. Add avocado and peanuts just before serving.
Nutritional information per serving: 520 calories; 10 g protein; 52 g carbohydrates; 32 g fat (55% calories from fat); 4 1/2 g saturated fat (8% calories from saturated fat); 0 mg cholesterol; 490 mg sodium; 7 g fiber.
Sweet and Tangy Pickled Grape Dogs
Prep time: 15 minutes, plus 1 hour marinating time
Cook time: 5 minutes
Servings: 8 (1/4 cup relish per serving)
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1/2 cup wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 2 1/4 cups quartered or coarsely chopped Grapes from California (red, green, black or combination)
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 8 turkey or chicken hot dogs
- 8 hot dog buns, lightly toasted
- Place mustard seeds, coriander seeds and black peppercorns in small resealable bag. Using meat mallet or rolling pin, crush seeds and peppercorns.
- In small saucepan, stir vinegar, sugar, seeds and peppercorns; bring to boil. Remove from heat and stir to dissolve sugar; let cool. Stir in grapes and onion; set aside to cool and marinate 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
- Heat grill to medium heat.
- Grill hot dogs 5 minutes, turning occasionally, or until charred and heated through.
- Place hot dogs in buns. Using slotted spoon, top with pickled grapes.
Nutritional information per serving: 280 calories; 10 g protein; 39 g carbohydrates; 10 g fat (32% calories from fat); 2 g saturated fat (6% calories from saturated fat); 35 mg cholesterol; 630 mg sodium; 1 g fiber.
Creamy Vegan Grape Ice Cream
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 10-15 minutes
Servings: 8 (1/2 cup per serving)
- 1 pound stemmed black Grapes from California
- 12 ounces vanilla oat coffee creamer, well chilled
- 12 ounces unsweetened oat coffee creamer, well chilled
- In high-speed blender, puree grapes until smooth. Transfer to medium saucepan and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to low and cook 10-15 minutes, or until reduced to 1 cup. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled.
- Stir creamer into pureed grapes and pour into bowl of ice cream maker. Freeze according to manufacturer’s directions. Transfer to freezer-safe container; cover and freeze until firm.
Substitution: For lighter color, use 3/4 pound black grapes and 1/4 pound red.
Note: Make sure ice cream maker bowl is well chilled or frozen before making ice cream.
Nutritional information per serving: 140 calories; 0 g protein; 22 g carbohydrates; 6 g fat (39% calories from fat); 0 g saturated fat; 0 mg cholesterol; 45 mg sodium; 1 g fiber.
5 tips to be an after-school mealtime hero
(Family Features) It’s one of the busiest times of the year, meaning managing mealtimes can be tough as families navigate the school year hustle. Between school, work, extracurriculars and social activities, it can be overwhelming to figure out what to eat and when.
Put your worries aside and become a true after-school hero with these timesaving, delicious meal planning strategies while giving back to communities in need.
Conquer Your Next Grocery Trip
When it’s time for a grocery run, write down everything you need, perhaps on your phone’s notetaking app, being sure to take inventory of ingredients you already have on hand. Keeping the list handy can make your trip to the store efficient while helping you stay on track, avoid multiple trips and prevent buying excess or unnecessary items.
Champion Your Inner Meal Planning
One of the first steps in meal planning should be making a list of all the meals you and your family enjoy on a regular basis. Compiling this list can help simplify weekly dinner plans and reduce stress at the grocery store. Include simple recipes like sandwiches, tacos or chili. If you want to make an easy, tasty dinner to save the day, consider something simple like chicken fried rice. All you need is 15 minutes and Ben’s Original Ready Rice, chicken breast meat, peas, carrots, reduced sodium soy sauce, garlic powder and eggs. As you try new recipes, add any family favorites to the list and consider reinventing classics by bringing in a different side dish like rice and grains to give them a whole new spin.
Come To the Rescue with Simple Prep Hacks
Before you plan your meals for the week, take a look at your calendar. On days that include evening activities, opt for easy-to-prepare meals or slow cooker- or air fryer-friendly recipes to save time. Leave more complex meals for less busy days or weekends, and don’t be afraid to schedule a weekly leftover night to empty out the fridge before your next trip to the grocery store.
Take Advantage of Pantry Staples
Turning to your pantry for after-school snacks and quick meals can help keep busy nights from getting even more hectic. For example, the entire portfolio of Ben’s Original Ready Rice – Whole Grain Brown Rice, Jasmine, Spanish Style and more – can help provide tasty, convenient meal options that are ready in just 90 seconds. Plus, until Nov. 12, for every $1 spent on participating products, $1 will be donated to No Kid Hungry through the “Be an After-School Hero” program, which can help provide 2.5 million meals to those who need them most.
Be a Prep Day Warrior
Setting aside some time – maybe a couple of hours on the weekend – to prep food for the week’s meals can help stretch your time and allow more moments to enjoy meals around the table as a family. This time can be used to cut, brown and divide proteins into portions; chop or slice fruits and vegetables; prepare one-pan dishes; make sauces; and more.
Fight mealtime fatigue and make school night meals a cinch with more ideas and recipes at BensOriginal.com.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Family bonding time with easy meals
(Family Features) Busy fall schedules often leave little time for the things that matter most – sharing special moments with those you love. This year, as time seems to speed up during another school year, making family bonding a priority in your household can start with a few simple tricks.
Connect with your loved ones this fall while juggling hectic routines with this advice:
Schedule Family Nights
Desiring evenings spent with your nearest and dearest and actually making them happen are two separate things entirely. It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the season with days that feel too long and evenings that are often too short. Putting dedicated family nights on the calendar is a good way to avoid last-minute commitments that take away from important bonding time. Incorporate some favorite activities, whether your loved ones are board game enthusiasts or movie buffs, to give everyone something exciting to look forward to.
Make Cooking Together a Family Activity
Making dinner for the family shouldn’t take up valuable time that could be used for quality moments together. Seeking out quick and easy recipes leaves more hours in the day to spend with family members – or you can even make preparing dinner a family activity.
Teaching kids how to make your favorite recipes creates great memories and can maximize time spent together. From making kid-approved lunchbox sliders together to preparing time-saving, weeknight-friendly sliders as a family after school, King’s Hawaiian Rolls and Slider Buns have the power to help unite busy parents and picky kids. Plus, they’re soft and fluffy with the right touch of sweetness, and sliders are customizable, easy, fun and always a crowd pleaser. These Ham and Swiss Sliders or Peanut Butter, Jelly and Banana Sliders offer ways kids can help, from layering meats and cheeses to spreading peanut butter. Everyone can lend a hand in the kitchen while enjoying quality time together.
Encourage Extracurricular Participation
Beyond those special moments at home, there are plenty of ways to connect with your kiddos. Encouraging them to participate in extracurriculars, like sports, band, theater, dance, choir or other activities, provides a great way to enjoy something together as you watch your children branch out and try new things. If they happen to try an activity you used to (or still do) participate in, it’s an easy way to make a unique connection by sharing your own memories, offering helpful tips or even passing down old equipment like sports gear or an instrument.
Find more inspiration for family bonding with delicious meals and snacks by visiting KingsHawaiian.com.
Ham and Swiss Sliders
Total time: 25 minutes
- 1 stick butter
- 1 package (12 rolls) King’s Hawaiian Original Hawaiian Sweet Rolls
- 1 pound shaved deli ham
- 1 pound thinly sliced Swiss cheese
- Heat oven to 350 F. Melt butter and set aside.
- Cut entire pack of rolls in half horizontally, keeping all top and bottom halves intact.
- In 9-by-13-inch pan, place bottom halves of rolls and cover with ham and cheese.
- Cover ham and cheese stacks with top halves of rolls. Drizzle butter mixture over tops of rolls.
- Bake, uncovered, 15-20 minutes. Separate rolls for serving.
Peanut Butter, Jelly and Banana Sliders
Prep time: 5 minutes
- 1 package (12 rolls) King’s Hawaiian Original Sweet Rolls
- 4 tablespoons salted peanut butter
- 4 tablespoons strawberry jam
- 2 bananas, sliced
- Cut entire pack of rolls in half horizontally, keeping all top and bottom halves intact.
- Spread peanut butter on bottom halves followed by strawberry jam. Top with banana slices then top halves of rolls.
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