Enchanted Mommy

Meatza: South Beach Friendly

Last week husband was gone for 6 days on a business trip.  He came back feeling awful and needed a little detox from all the eating out and high carb meals.  So, now he’s trying to really limit his carbs.  Tonight I made him some meatza.  It’s like pizza, but without the crust and instead uses ground beef.  It actually is really good and a great low carb meal.


Yummy Meatza!

Yummy Meatza!

Here is what you need:

1 1/2 lbs lean ground beef (I actually used 2 lbs because my meat comes in 1 lb packages)
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed (fresh or from a jar)
1 tsp. dried oregano or Italian seasoning
8 oz. sugar free pizza sauce (Hunts Garlic and Herb in can)
8 oz. shredded mozzarella
Toppings (peppers, mushrooms, olives, whatever you like)

Here’s what the garlic and herb sauce looks like (It’s the one we’ve found with the lowest amount of sugar)

Sauce with the lowest sugar.

Sauce with the lowest sugar.

All you do is:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a large bowl combine the meat with the onion, garlic and
oregano or Italian seasonings.
3. Pat the mixture out in an even layer in a 9×12 baking pan. Bake
for 20 minutes.
4. When the meat comes out, it will have shrunk a fair amount. Pour
off the grease and spread the pizza sauce over the meat. Sprinkle on
the cheese.
5. Add toppings.
6. Put the Meatza 4 inches below a broiler set on high. Broil for
about 5 minutes or until cheese is melted and starting to brown.
(Can also place in regular oven and bake until cheese is melted)

Plenty of leftovers too!

Plenty of leftovers too!

We let the girls make their own pizzas but using whole wheat toasted sandwich rounds.  I will miss one day how excited these girls get to make pizza!

My sweet girls!

My sweet girls!

Last week I posted how I lost my pregnancy weight.  I definitely made this a lot then!

Meatza: South Beach Friendly
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
It’s like pizza, but without the crust and instead uses ground beef. It actually is really good and a great low carb meal.
Recipe type: South Beach Friendly
Cuisine: Italian/American
Serves: 8
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large bowl combine the meat with the onion, garlic and
  • oregano or Italian seasonings.
  • Pat the mixture out in an even layer in a 9×12 baking pan. Bake
  • for 20 minutes.
  • When the meat comes out, it will have shrunk a fair amount. Pour
  • off the grease and spread the pizza sauce over the meat. Sprinkle on
  • the cheese.
  • Add toppings.
  • Put the Meatza 4 inches below a broiler set on high. Broil for
  • about 5 minutes or until cheese is melted and starting to brown.
  • (Can also place in regular oven and bake until cheese is melted)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl combine the meat with the onion, garlic and
  3. oregano or Italian seasonings.
  4. Pat the mixture out in an even layer in a 9×12 baking pan. Bake
  5. for 20 minutes.
  6. When the meat comes out, it will have shrunk a fair amount. Pour
  7. off the grease and spread the pizza sauce over the meat. Sprinkle on
  8. the cheese.
  9. Add toppings.
  10. Put the Meatza 4 inches below a broiler set on high. Broil for
  11. about 5 minutes or until cheese is melted and starting to brown.
  12. (Can also place in regular oven and bake until cheese is melted)


Some other good healthy eating recipes!

Whole Grain Lasagna

Broccoli Salad

No Potato Salad

Chicken Salad

Coconut Milk Tropical Smoothie

Macaroni Grill’s Penne Rustica!

What is with this icky flu stuff going around?  It seems like everyone I know has had it… including everyone in my family.  It has been pretty awful really!  After nursing myself, hubby, and kids for the last two weeks through this nasty virus, I was ready for some real comfort food.

Pasta is always comfort food for me!

This has always been one of my favorite things to eat!  Ever since I worked as a waitress at Macaroni Grill in college, I have loved eating Penne Rustica.

Someone introduced me to this awesome cookbook that replicates restaurant recipes.  This is where I found my beloved Penne Rustica recipe!  So yummy!  I have made it for big crowds as well as small family dinners… doesn’t matter, it is always a hit!

Seriously, doesn’t it look so yummy?!  I love this stuff!  It always impresses!  This meal will go very fast at your next get together or pot luck!

Penne Rustica (Tastes just like Macaroni Grills version)
From Todd Wilbur’s Top Secret Recipes

1 lb penne rigate pasta
12 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 skinless chicken breasts
½ cup thick-sliced smoked prosciutto, chopped


3 Tb butter
2 Tb minced garlic
3 Tb Marsala wine
2 Cups heavy cream
1 Cup grated parmesan cheese
½ Cup milk
½ Cup chicken broth
1 Tb cornstarch
1 Tb Grey Poupon Dijon mustard
2 tsp. Minced fresh rosemary (I used dried and it works just as well)
½ tsp. Salt
½ tsp. fresh thyme (I used dried)
¼ tsp. ground cayenne pepper

3 Tb grated parmesan cheese
1 ½ tsp paprika

***Garnish with rosemary sprigs if desired


1.Preheat grill to high.

2. Prepare sauce by melting butter over medium/low heat in a medium saucepan.  Add garlic and let it sweat for 5 minutes (Do not brown garlic!  If it browns throw it out and start over).  Add the wine and cook for another 5 minutes.  Add the rest of the sauce ingredients and whisk until smooth.  Simmer for 10minutes.  Cover and remove from heat.

3. Cook Pasta al dente (a little tender, but not mushy) and drain.

4. Rub chicken with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Stick the shrimp on skewers, rub them with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

5. Grill chicken for 5 to 6 minutes per side and grill the shrimp for 2 minutes per side.  Slice chicken into strips when finished.

6.  Preheat oven to 500 degrees.  Use a large glass or ceramic baking dish.  Add pasta, chicken and shrimp to the baking dish, spoon sauce over the top and toss to coat.

7.  For the topping, mix the parm. cheese with the paprika.  Sprinkle over the top of the pasta.    Bake for 10-12 minutes or until topping browns.

Mini Cucumber Sandwiches

Happy {late} New Year!  I think this is the first New Year’s in about 4 years that I’ve made it til midnight.  We had some of my friends over and it helped that we both have a one and three year olds to run around the house until they crashed at around 11:30.  The three year olds thought it was so.dang.cool to share a bed.  So, I guess when you have people over, you HAVE to make some delicious food and since they came over a little later, I decided to do heavy apps.  I made these delicious looking cucumber sandwiches, three dips and a salami (don’t judge, I’ve been craving salami EVERY SINGLE DAY since I found out I was pregnant) and cheese platter.  I got this recipe here.


These are so delish. Everyone loved them!

Don’t they look delish?!  Here’s what you need:

1 cup quality mayonnaise
1- 8oz. package cream cheese, softened
1 package dry italian dressing mix
1 loaf loaf french bread (I used wheat), sliced about 1/2 inch thick
2 cucumbers, thinly sliced
chopped dill weed, fresh or dried
n a medium bowl, with an electric hand mixer, beat together mayo, cream cheese & Italian seasoning. Cover with plastic wrap & chill at least 4 hours or overnight.
When ready to serve, spread 1-2 TBSP of cream cheese mixture onto sliced bread, top with a sliced cucumber & sprinkle with dill. Serve immediately.



I used my pampered chef crinkle cutter to make the cucumbers look like this!

Happy New Year!

Bourbon Roasted Filet Mignon Tenderloin!!!!

We had the yummiest Christmas dinner this year!  In the past we have always done a huge prime rib, but this year we changed it up just a tiny bit and decided to do a whole filet mignon tenderloin.

I am the honorary roaster for Christmas dinner so I set off to find a recipe that would work for us.  I found this yummy Bourbon marinade from Paule Deen on food network, but used this other recipe here to roast the meet since I wasn’t interested in standing in the snow to grill.

First of all, I did learn that you need to trim up the tenderloin.  I found this youtube video to be perfect in explaining how to trim the meat.  I roasted to meat whole rather than slicing it up though as he does in the video.

Looks AMAZING and tastes AMAZING!

Marinating in the Bourbon- cilantro mixture.  There are not two filet’s in there… just decided to roast the filet “chain” from the trimmings as well.  It wasn’t very good, but the kid were fine with it.  See youtube video above for more info.



  • 1 cup bourbon
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1 bunch cilantro, leaves chopped
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 to 4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves chopped
  • 1 (5-pound) beef tenderloin, silver connective tissue removed
  • Oil, to brush on before searing
***Mix all the ingredients (except oil) together in a bowl after trimming the filet tenderloin.  Poor over the filet and marinade for at least 5 hours or over night.  I marinated mine over night and it has an AMAZING flavor.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Season the meat with the salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat 2 teaspoons of the oil over medium-high heat until good and hot, then add the meat and sear until well browned on all sides, about 10 minutes total.

Transfer the meat to a rack set on a baking sheet. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part registers 140 degrees F for medium-rare, about 30 minutes, or to your desired degree of doneness. Remove it from the oven, cover with aluminum foil, and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing to allow the juices to redistribute.  I used a tenderloin just over 7lbs and it took 45 minutes to get to 140 degrees.


Brownie Christmas Trees!

Merry Christmas!!!!  I love this time of year!  So many yummy goodies and happiness all around!

I love to see so people around the world united in celebrating the birth of the Savior.  It is so magical.  People collecting gifts and food and giving to others.  The happiness this season spreads such feelings of peace during difficult times.

It always amazes me!

This year we drove from Florida to Northern Virginia to celebrate Christmas.  We have been busy meeting up with good friends and family.  I made these yummy Christmas tree brownies to bring to dinner at a friends house.

Just make your favorite brownies and cut them into triangles using a pizza cutter.  Have fun decorating them with your kiddos!

We had such a good time making them even though we left them sitting on the counter when we left for our friends. Ha!  Doesn’t the thought count more than actually remembering to bring the goodies along???  My mom got to take them to work to pass out to her coworkers instead!






World’s Best Broccoli Cheese Soup!!!

I have been going through a serious soup phase lately!  I don’t know if its the cold weather, the holiday season, or what, but I have been loving it!

I had to bring a crock pot of soup to a Christmas party last weekend and made this AWESOME Broccoli Cheese Soup.  There were close to 100 guests and probably 15 or so crock pots of soup brought.  My soup was the first one gone!!!

I used a combination of two different recipes because I really liked the addition of carrots in one, but I didn’t want to use half and half creamer in the sauce.  Here and Here.

I doubled the recipe to fill my crock pot.  It was filled all the way to the brim!  The only thing I would do differently if I cooked this again would be to grate the carrot as the original recipe calls for.  I was being lazy and just dumped a bag of thin carrot straws in it.

I would also just dump everything together in a crock pot to cook for a few hours (Do not add the butter/flour/milk part until after it has already thickened in a saucepan first).  I was short on time and cooked it in a pot over the stove then moved it to a crock pot to stay warm during the party.

 1 3/4 cup of chicken stock
1 small onion finely diced
1/3 cup flour
4 TB butter
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups warmed milk
1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar
1/2 cup swiss cheese
1 cup grated carrot
3 cups of chopped broccoli, lightly steamed

***Cook chopped onions in chicken broth in a covered sauce pan for 15 minutes. Heat milk in the microwave for one minute.  Melt butter in a separate large pot.  Add flour, salt, and pepper to the butter and stir constantly for a minute or two. Then add the milk and whisk until the soup begins to thicken, about 5 minutes.  Add the chicken broth/onion mixture and stir until combined.

Add the cheddar and swiss cheeses and stir until completely melted. Stir in brocoli and grated carrot.  Ready to eat!

This was soooooo good that just writing this post and looking at the pics is giving me cravings for it again!  I think I will go through a batch into my crock pot right now!  Happy Cooking!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Balls! Feels like Christmas!!!

My husband had these at a friends house a few weeks ago and insisted that I make them for him… great idea!  They were awesome and really made it feel like Christmas around here!  I should tell you that this recipe seriously makes a gazillion PB balls so if you do not have a lot of mouths to eat them I would make half of this recipe.

They taste like a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup!  So good!  We roasted marshmallows at my sisters in her fire pit the night I made these with the kids and my husband loved putting it in his S’more.  He called it S’mreeses.

Anyway, these were great and easy enough for the kids to help with.  They loved rolling the dough into balls.

The Peanut Butter Ball S’more.


Peanut Butter Balls ready to get dipped in melted chocolate




More Glorious!


Very festive!


Peanut Butter Balls
Recipe from Witandwhistle.com

3lbs powdered sugar
4 cups of peanut butter
1lb of butter
3 bags of chocolate chips (I used milk chocolate)
1/3 cake paraffin wax (I used shortening instead)

***Combine the peanut butter, sugar, and butter together.  I had to use my hands to mix well.  Roll into balls and refrigerate.  Melt chocolate and wax in a double boiler.  I don’t have a double boiler so I just microwaved them in a microwave bowl for 30 seconds, then stirred. Microwaved another 30 seconds and stirred, then 20 seconds and stirred, etc… only use small time increments as it is very easy to burn.  Once melted I used a toothpick to dip the balls into the chocolate.  If the chocolate got too thick I just heated it up for another 15-20 seconds.  Cool on wax paper and refrigerate.

Roasting marshmallows to make some Peanut Butter Ball S’mores!


Snowman Cupcakes – Easy and Adorable

I made a promise to myself this holiday season and that was to not let the hustle bussle get to me and actually take time for the season with my kids.  Usually the holiday season just passes me by and I did not want my kids to have the same feeling.  So, here’s one of our many crafts/recipes that we’ve done so far.

Yes, I know these aren’t the beautiful flowers like Jamie did, but decorating with candy can hide the not so good with icing talent.

So easy and a huge hit with the kids!

All you need is:

– Yellow cake mix box with the ingredients they have listed (or your flavor of choice)
– White icing (I cheated and used store bought)
– White sugar-like sprinkles
– Mini chocolate chips
– Butterscotch chips
– Aluminum foil cupcake wrappers (or your wrapper of choice)

I bought these Wilton sprinkles at Target in the baking section.

All you do is:

Bake cupcakes according to box.  Let cool completely.  Ice them, turn it upside down and dip into sugar.  Decorate with the chocolate and butterscotch chips.  So easy, so good, so cute, and so fun!

Here they are all together!

snowman cupcakes

Aren’t they so adorable?!?!


My 3 year old having so much fun!

But please, don’t give me all the credit!!!  I got this adorable idea here.

Lastly, remember to enjoy the season!




The Best Baked Potato Soup!

Seriously guys, this soup is awesome.  It it so perfect to warm you up on a cold fall day!  We had a cold front come though here after Hurricane Sandy and everyone was freaked.  Cold in Florida is 60 degrees by the way. Funny after coming from cold Virginia winters!  You should have seen the sweat shirts and hoodies flying off the racks though!

Anyway, I looked all over for a good potato soup recipe to use and found this.  I picked this one because it is made with cream cheese instead of heavy cream.  I made a huge pot of it and left it in the crockpot for everyone to eat all day.  It was soooooooo good and perfect on cool fall day!  You can’t go wrong with this recipe!

Baked Potato Soup
5 lbs Russet potatoes washed, unpeeled, and cut into 1 inch cubes (I did peel mine… didn’t want to give the kiddos and excuse to turn their nose up)
1 medium yellow onion
5 tsp minced garlic (above 10 cloves)
64 oz chicken stock or broth
16 oz softened cream cheese
1 Tb Seasoned Salt
Garnishes of your choice:  I love bacon crumbles, shredded cheese, and green onions

***Add all the ingredients except the cream cheese to the crock pot and cook on high for 5 to 6 hrs.  Puree the cream cheese and half of the soup in the blender and pour back into crock pot (I admit I did not do this since I wanted my potato soup to be extra chunky… I just added the cream cheese straight to the crock pot).   Stir well and serve with whatever toppings you want.

So, so good… I am craving another bowl!

Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies – NO CRISCO

I think I found the BEST chocolate chip cookie recipe.  I found it a few weeks ago when my mom was in town watching the girls so Brian and I could go to a Redskins game (hush it, they actually won this one AND R.G. III ran an 80 yard touchdown).  Anyways, Ella was begging to make cookies with my mom so I quickly found this recipe on food dot com.  I searched through several highly rated reviews and they mostly used crisco.  NO THANKS!  That stuff looks like straight up lard to me and I can’t imagine putting that in my mouth.  So, I found this OVERLY delicious recipe!  They are so moist and chewy.  I promise you won’t regret it if you make these.  Ella and I actually made them again!

chocolate chip cookies

These are so delicious!

Here’s what ya need:

2 cups all-purpose flour (280 gms)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (20 gms)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled until warm (170 gms)
1 cup brown sugar (packed, light or dark, 236 gms)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk, from a large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips (semi-sweet, milk chocolate or any combination, 300 gms)
1 cup walnuts (114 gms, chopped) (optional)- I didn’t have them on hand

All you do is:

1.  Preheat oven to 325°F.
2.  Cover 2 large cookie sheets with parchment paper Mix flour, baking powder & salt in a bowl or bag and set aside.
3.  Mix butter and sugars with with a mixer until blended and smooth, add egg, yolk & vanilla.
4.  Mix until incorporated.
5.  Add dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
6.  Stir in chips and optional nuts.
7.  Divide into 18 equal balls, a 2″ cookie scoop works just about perfectly, about 60 gms each.
8.  EVENLY space 9 on each cookie sheet.
9.  Bake for 12-18 minutes, rotating front to back and top to bottom after 8 minutes.

**You want these to be chewy so make sure you don’t overcook!  They should just be golden around the edges.

Add this to your holiday cookies!  Happy baking!!!