Big Pot of Chicken Soup

In preparation for Baby coming, I’ve been cooking larger quantities and stashing away leftovers in the freezer. I kind of feel like a squirrel collecting acorns for the winter.

With this meal, I realized that a larger soup kettle is definitely needed. My 10 cup pot was completely filled to the brim and I barely had room to stir. Eeek!

By the way, this is one of the meals I make with our whole chickens from the Goosemobile. You can see how I cook up a whole chicken here.

Chicken Soup.JPG

Big Pot of Chicken Soup

2 T oil
1 onion, diced
4 stalks of celery, diced
2-3 cups of carrots, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups potatoes, cubed
5 cups chicken stock*
1 T thyme
1 tsp parsley
1 tsp sage
2 tsp salt, more or less to taste
1/4 tsp pepper
2 cups cooked chicken, chopped

Heat oil in a large pot. Add onion and celery and saute until semi-tender.

Add carrots and continue to saute a little while longer.

Add garlic cloves and saute briefly until fragrant.

Add potatoes, chicken stock, and seasoning and simmer until the potatoes are tender.

Add chicken and heat through.

Makes about 5-6 servings.

*Note: We like our soups to have lots of “filling” with not much extra broth. If you like more broth in your soup, you may want to add more chicken stock or reduce the vegetables, especially if you like to add crackers.

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Carrot Spice Smoothie

Carrot spice smoothie topped with  homemade granola …mmm!

Carrot spice smoothie topped with homemade granola…mmm!

This delicious smoothie is a great way to start your day with veggies, healthy fat, and protein! It even makes a nutritious dessert.

With about 5 minutes of prep work the day before, this breakfast comes together in just minutes.

Carrot Spice Smoothie
Serves 2

1 1/2 cups carrots, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2 cups milk, divided
4 dates
2 T. almond butter or pecan butter*
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp vanilla
Stevia or maple syrup if you want it sweeter

Optional add-ins to boost the nutrition:
1 T. ground flax
1 T. maca powder
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
1 raw egg yolk (eggs yolks are safe and super-nutritious to eat raw if you get them from a trusted local farmer who raises his chickens on pasture)

The day before you make this smoothie, you need to do two things:
1- Steam the carrots until tender and then refrigerate.
2- Freeze 1 cup of the milk in an ice cube tray (leave the other 1 cup milk in the frig)

To make the smoothie:
Place all the ingredients in a blender (including the frozen milk cubes) and blend.  Taste and see if it's sweet enough for you.  You can add maple syrup or stevia and blend again if you want it sweeter.  Top with granola (like my homemade granola recipe), whipped cream, or extra cinnamon!

*If you aren't familiar with almond or pecan butter I highly recommend you google how to make it.  It is SO GOOD.  Or you can just omit the pecan or almond butter.  Do not sub peanut butter.

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Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Chicken Wild Rice Soup.JPG

Have you ever read the “My Most Embarrassing Story” page that some magazines feature? My grandma is a subscriber to the “Country Woman” magazine and I’ve noticed how so many of the embarrassing stories happened when a newlywed was cooking for her mother-in-law.

So understandably, I was a little nervous about serving this soup (not having made it before) when my mother-in-law came over for lunch recently.

I am happy to report that I didn’t make a single goof and was complimented by both my husband and mother-in-law. I hope you have equal success with this recipe!

P.S. I have a great relationship with my mother-in-law and have no fears that I will be disqualified as her son’s wife based upon my cooking abilities. :)

This is the wild rice I used.

This is the wild rice I used.


Chicken Wild Rice Soup

1/2 cup wild rice blend
2 cups chicken stock (plus extra if necessary)
1/2 cup diced carrots
3 T butter
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced mushrooms
2 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp parsley
1/2 tsp sage
1/2 tsp thyme
3 T flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 cups milk
1 cup pre-cooked and chopped chicken

Note: I like to soak my rice in water (about a cup) for 6-24 hours ahead of time. This makes it easier to digest AND it reduces the cooking time. After soaking, I drain the water and proceed with the recipe. If you are not soaking the rice, then you will need to add an additional 1/2 cup of chicken broth when cooking.

Place the soaked and drained wild rice, chicken stock, and carrots in a pot. Simmer until rice is tender, about 30-45 minutes.

When the rice is nearly done cooking, in another pot, melt butter and add onions and mushrooms. Saute until onions are tender.
Add garlic, parsley, sage, and thyme and saute briefly until fragrant.
Add flour and cook for a few minutes.
Add milk gradually, whisking out the clumps. Cook until thick.
Add salt, pepper, and chicken.
When the rice is done cooking, add it to the milk mixture. If you would like the soup thinner, you can add some more chicken stock.
Best served with grated cheese on top!

Makes 3-4 servings.

Comment if you make this!

My New Favorite Way to Cook Vegetables


With root vegetables, the normal method of roasting them uncovered in the oven tends to make them too dry and tough for my liking.  On the other hand, steaming tends to keep them pretty bland and boring. 

My new favorite way to cook root vegetables is to bake them in the oven in a covered dish. 

Covering the baking dish while cooking the vegetables keeps the moisture in, allowing them to steam, while at the same time developing a golden brown exterior and concentrating the flavor in the vegetables.  This method is simple and hands-off.  Let me know if you try it!

Cut up your vegetables and butter and place them in the dish like so.

Cut up your vegetables and butter and place them in the dish like so.

Baked Root Vegetables

~You could also use turnips or radishes
~ 2 T. butter

Preheat the oven to 350.
Using whatever quantity that your family needs, cut the vegetables into even slices that are 1/4" thick.  Place in a glass baking dish.  Cut the 2 T. of butter into small pieces and place it on top of the vegetables.  Cover the dish with a piece of tinfoil.  Bake for about 45 minutes, until the vegetables are almost fork tender.  Remove the tinfoil so that the liquid accumulating in the bottom of the dish can evaporate.  Stir the vegetables.  Return to the oven for about 15 minutes, or until fork-tender.

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Roasted Carrots with Cilantro Yogurt Dip

Carrot fries.JPG

Roasted Carrots

  • 1/2 T. oil
  • Enough carrots to feed your family, halved or quartered so they are 1/4-3/8 inch thick.  (Keep in mind they will shrink in size somewhat).
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425.
Toss carrots with oil and spices and spread in a single layer on a baking sheet or cast iron pan. Roast for 25 minutes, flipping halfway through.  

Cilantro Yogurt Dip

  • 1/2 cup yogurt (can substitute sour cream)
  • 2 T. minced cilantro
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/2 clove minced garlic (don't use the whole clove like I did!)
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Mix and dip!

Leftover dip can also be used as a salad dressing.

Leave a comment if you make this recipe!

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Tender and Delicious Baked Carrots


If you've ever made roasted carrots in the oven before, you probably know they have a tendency to dry out and become tough like leather.  By covering the pan during half of the baking time, they turn out moist, tender, and full of flavor.

If you don't have a lid like this, you can cover the pan with tinfoil.

If you don't have a lid like this, you can cover the pan with tinfoil.

Tender and Delicious Baked Carrots

Carrots- enough to feed your family (keep in mind they will shrink a little bit in size)
1-2 T. butter
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400.
Cut up carrots into evenly sized halves and quarters.
Place in a baking pan and season with salt, pepper, and a sprinkling of thyme.  Top with small chunks of butter.
Cover with an oven-safe lid or tinfoil and bake for 20 minutes until semi-tender.
Remove the lid (or tinfoil) and flip the carrots.  
eturn to oven and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, until the carrots are completely tender and are browned to your liking.