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17452-21-challenge-day-21-almonda-cake-pink

We've finally made it to the end of the 21 Day Challenge! As a reward for all of the hard work you've done cooking, here's something sweet to bake. This Almond Cake is reduced fat, as we cut half the butter with applesauce. You can replace all of the butter with applesauce, but it will change the texture a bit.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1 1/2 cups whole almonds, in their skins
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 9 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • pinch of salt
  • confectioners sugar and slivered almonds for decoration

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°.
  2. Place the almonds in a food processor and process to form a "mealy" mixture.
  3. Beat the butter, sugar, and applesauce together in a large bowl or mixer until smooth and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, almonds, and both extracts until well blended.
  4. Beat in the flour and salt mixture briefly, just until combined.
  5. Lightly grease a cake pan and line the pan with parchment paper.
  6. Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the surface. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the cake feels spongy. 
  7. Remove from oven and let cool. Dust with confectioners' sugar and top with slivered almonds.

17451-21-challenge-day-20-slow-cook-quinoa-enchilada

We love slow cooker recipes. They just make dinner (and lunch for the week) so easy. Enchiladas are delicious, but they can be time-consuming and with the tortillas and all that cheese, they are not always the healthiest choice. This Quinoa Enchilada Bake combines the ease of the slow cooker with the deliciousness of enchiladas and it's something you can feel good eating. Not only does this recipe include quinoa, one of those "hot" food items that everyone is raving about,  but it also has plenty of colorful veggies and beans. 

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped peppers
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups dry quinoa
  • 2 1/4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can black beans, drained
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can pinto beans, drained
  • 1 (8 oz) can corn
  • 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese

Directions

  1. Heat canola oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and peppers and saute 3 minutes.
  2. Add garlic and saute 30 seconds longer. Pour mixture into slow cooker.
  3. Stir in quinoa, vegetable broth, canned tomatoes, tomato sauce, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. 
  4. Cover and cook on high about 3 hours (make sure it's not getting soggy or drying out near the edges)
  5. Add corn, black beans, and pinto beans and stir. Sprinkle cheese over the top. 
  6. Cover and cooked until heated through and cheese has melted, about 10-15 minutes. 
  7. Serve with toppings like diced avocados, diced tomatoes, cilantro, lime wedges, or sour cream.

 Adapted From Cooking Classy

17447-broccoli-potato-soup-header When it's cold, there's nothing better than curling up with a hot bowl of soup. Like with the All-Blender Soup, this soup is pretty easy- instead of a blender, everything just goes into pot. A tip for cutting down on the prep time is to buy the veggies already cut. Most grocery stores will sell packages of pre-cut veggies like onions, carrots, peppers or celery in the produce section. This recipe uses an immersion blender at the end, but if you don't have one, just scoop out a good portion of the potatoes and broccoli and put them in a blender for a few minutes. 

Ingredients

  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced small
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt and fresh pepper
  • 4 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 tbsp parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. In a large soup pot, melt butter. Add chopped vegetables and saute on low heat until soft, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add flour, salt, and pepper, and stir until smooth.
  3. Add chicken broth, milk, and potatoes and set heat to high until it comes to a boil. Cover and cook on low until potatoes are soft, about 10-15 minutes.
  4. Add broccoli and parmesan cheese and stir well. Cook uncovered until broccoli is cooked, about 5 minutes. Add cheddar cheese, stir well, and remove from heat. 
  5. Use a immersion blender to blend the soup for a few minutes to make it creamier.
17447-21-day-18-broccoli-potato-soup

 

17448-21-day-19-muffin tin chicken potpieChicken potpie has never been simpler or cuter. The 21 Day Challenge includes several muffin tin recipes because muffin tins give you flexibility. It is easy to double, or even triple the recipe, to make more for a large group, or freeze or refrigerate uneaten portions to eat as leftovers or take for lunch. 

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of cooked chicken breasts, diced
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh mixed veggies
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 2 cans biscuits

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, combine the chicken, soup, veggies, cheese, herbs, and spices.
  2. Lightly grease a muffin tin and press the biscuits into each cup, pushing the dough up the sides.
  3. Spoon the pot pie mixture into each biscuit cup. 
  4. Bake at 400° for about 15 minutes.

17446-21-day-17-buffalo-chicken-dip

It's football season, and you may be spending your Sundays watching your team dominate (or fail miserably). Why not incorporate the 21 Day Challenge into your weekly routine? After all, that's the point of the challenge- to make cooking at home part of your lifestyle. Sure, this dip isn't exactly the healthiest thing you could make, but when it's cold outside, this spicy dip is exactly what you need for your Sunday TV watching (whether that's football or not). 

Ingredients

  • 16 oz. shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 12 oz. cream cheese
  • 8 oz. ranch dressing
  • 6 oz. Frank's Red Hot Sauce (depending on how spicy you want it, start with less and add more as needed)
  • 2 chicken breasts, shredded

Directions

  1. Add Cheddar cheese, cream cheese, ranch, and hot sauce to slow cooker. Mix together.
  2. Set slow cooker on high, and allow cheese mixture to melt.
  3. Add shredded chicken breasts and cook for 1-2 hours, allowing the flavors to combine. Stir occasionally, making sure the bottom doesn't burn.
  4. Serve with tortilla chips. 
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