Tasty Tuesday–Slow Cooker Taco Chicken Three Ways

Last month, I took a look at how I used one pork roast three ways; today I’m taking a look at how I can use one batch of slow cooker taco chicken three ways, as well!

As its name suggests, it’s an excellent taco (or taco salad) filling:

I also like to use it in quesadillas:

And my southwestern soup isn’t just for turkey or pork leftovers…chicken goes great in it, too!

I’m all about stretching leftovers in creative ways these days…how about you?

Tasty Tuesday–One Pork Roast Three Ways

Today I’m taking a look at how I used one pork shoulder roast to make three consecutive dinners. I’ve shared all three recipes before, but let’s look at the series.

First up was crock-pot pork carnitas served on tostadas with a variety of toppings:

Using the leftovers of the shredded pork, I then made a southwestern soup (which is also really good with turkey!):

Finally, the soup leftovers served over rice, in a dinner inspired by Qdoba’s Mexican Gumbo:

I love these meals because they make really good use of a pork shoulder, and because there are so many options for how you can serve them. I always try to make sure we have a wide variety of toppings, so everyone can add to their meal as they choose (especially missing this time was avocado, which was unfortunate, but you can’t always find everything), and you don’t really feel like you’re just eating the same thing over and over again, which is super important when serving leftovers!

Tasty Tuesday–Salmon Pasta

Lent means fish sales. I especially love it when salmon goes on sale, because I love to bake it will a little lemon juice and olive oil. I love it even more when I have salmon leftovers, because then I get to make one of my very favorite pasta dishes! If you don’t love capers as much as I do, feel free to reduce the amount in the recipe.

  • 16 oz. fettuccine
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • leftover salmon, flaked
  • 1 to 2 cans of artichoke hearts, quartered or chopped
  • 1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 3 Tbsp. minced fresh basil
  • 7 oz. capers, drained
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to package directions.

In a large skillet, heat butter; add garlic and cook for one minute. Stir in cream and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer two to three minutes until thickened, stirring constantly. Add salmon, artichokes, salt, and pepper.

Drain pasta and add to skillet. Stir in cheese, basil, capers, and lemon zest. Serve when heated through.

Tasty Tuesday–Turkey, Cranberry, and Goat Cheese Quesadillas

I modified this recipe from one our local grocery store suggested as a way to use up leftover turkey…the combination of flavors is amazing! I will definitely be adding this one to our Thanksgiving leftovers permanent collection!

  • 2 limes
  • 1/2 cup leftover or whole berry canned cranberry sauce
  • 8 (8-inch) flour tortillas
  • 1 8 oz. package chèvre (goat cheese) with herbs, softened
  • 2 cups chopped leftover or cooked turkey
  • 1 small jalapeño pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
  • salsa and/or guacamole

Zest limes. In small bowl, stir together cranberry sauce and lime zest.

Place tortillas on work surface; evenly spread each with one ounce chèvre, then cranberry sauce mixture. Evenly top four tortillas with turkey and jalapeño; top with remaining tortillas to close quesadillas.

In batches, spray 12-inch skillet with cooking spray; add 1 quesadilla and cook over medium-low heat 2 to 3 minutes or until bottom is golden brown. Spray top of quesadilla with cooking spray; turn and cook 2 to 3 minutes longer or until bottom is golden brown. Cut each into 6 wedges; serve with salsa and guacamole.

Tasty Tuesday–Thanksgiving Leftovers Casserole

Thanksgiving is almost here! It’s hard to tell if we like the holiday meal better, or all the leftovers meals that follow. Today, I’m sharing my favorite of our leftovers dinners (other than turkey soup)…it uses four different Thanksgiving foods (all of which I make from scratch)! I’ll be honest, though, and admit that I always end up making a fresh batch of mashed potatoes for this recipe, because we never have leftovers of those! Also, the amounts are fairly flexible, so if you have a little less stuffing, or a little more turkey, you can still make it work.

  • 4 cups leftover prepared stuffing
  • 3/4 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
  • 4 cups leftover cooked turkey (about 1 lb.)
  • 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
  • 2-3 Tbsp. Italian seasoned dry bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9×13 pan. Spoon in stuffing, then top with cranberry sauce and turkey.
Combine mayonnaise with cheese. Evenly spread 1/2 of the mayonnaise mixture over turkey. Top with potatoes, then evenly spread with remaining mayonnaise mixture. Sprinkle with bread crumbs.
Bake 40 minutes or until golden brown and heated through. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Tasty Tuesday–Replica Qdoba Mexican Gumbo

After making Southwestern Turkey Soup in January, but substituting leftover Pork Carnitas for the turkey in the recipe, I realized that I had the basis for replicating the “Mexican Gumbo” that Qdoba serves. I have to say, I think I’ve come up with a pretty good approximation! Bunny seems to agree with that assessment, as it has quickly become one of her favorites, as well. It even works with leftovers from the original turkey soup variation, if you’re not in the mood for pork!

  • Leftover Southwestern Soup, (with the majority of the broth drained off)
  • Cooked Rice, (flavored with lime juice, to taste)
  • Chopped Cilantro
  • Shredded Jack Cheese
  • Tortilla Strips
  • Sour Cream
  • Salsa

Place cooked rice in the bottom of a bowl. Top with leftover soup, using only enough broth to keep the rice moist. Garnish with toppings as desired…my favorites are cilantro and shredded jack cheese.

Tasty Tuesday–Spicy Chipotle Pork Sandwiches with Jalapeño-Cilantro Slaw

This is a Pioneer Woman recipe that I tweaked a bit to suit our family. Both the meat and the slaw are quite spicy. The slaw is very pretty and summery with the bright green and purple colors!

Spicy Chipotle Pork (serve on Kaiser rolls):

  •  2 Whole Onions, Peeled And Quartered
  • Pork Shoulder Picnic Roast (about 6 lbs.–I used two smaller roasts)
  • Salt And Pepper
  • 1 can (12 Ounce) Chipotle Peppers In Adobo Sauce
  • 24 oz. Dr. Pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar

Generously salt and pepper the pork roast, then set it on top of the onions in the crock-pot.

Pour the can of chipotle peppers and sauce into a medium bowl. Pour in the Dr. Pepper. Add brown sugar to the juice and stir in. Pour over pork.

Cook on low for 10-12 hours, turning the roast every few hours. Check meat after 10 hours; it should be absolutely falling apart (use two forks to test.) If it’s not falling apart, leave in the crock-pot for another 1-2 hours.

Remove meat from crock-pot and place on a cutting board or other work surface. Use two forks to shred meat, discarding large pieces of fat. Strain as much of the fat off the top of the cooking liquid as you can and discard it. Before returning the meat to the cooking liquid, strain out the onions and whole peppers. Return the shredded meat to the cooking liquid, and keep warm until ready to serve. (You can also refrigerate the meat and liquid separately, then remove hardened fat once it’s cold. Then heat up the liquid on the stovetop and return the meat to the liquid to warm up.)

It’s quite spicy–you’ve been warned! The pork can make a repeat performance as quesadilla filling later in the week, if you’re looking for a quick leftovers meal.

Jalapeño-Cilantro Slaw

  • 1/2 head Cabbage, Sliced Thin
  • 1/2 head Purple Cabbage, Sliced Thin
  • 1 whole Jalapeño, Halved Lengthwise, Seeds Removed, And Thinly Sliced
  • 1/2 cup Whole Milk
  • 1/2 cup Mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon White Vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 2 cups Cilantro Leaves, Barely Chopped

Combine shredded cabbage and sliced jalapeño in a large bowl. In a separate bowl mix milk, mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, salt, and cayenne. Pour over cabbage. Toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate two hours.

Before serving, toss in cilantro leaves. Serve over meat in kaiser rolls.

The slaw is also spicy, so you may want to leave out either the jalapeño or the cayenne pepper to tone down the heat. It can be served on other sandwiches as well, and for the courageous, who either really like spicy food, or coleslaw, or both, can be eaten on the side.