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Quinoa Fruit Salad

5 Mar

Don’t worry we won’t judge you if you can’t pronounce quinoa. We’ve heard a lot of different ways how to say this indescribable grain and honestly, it doesn’t really matter how you say it. Just walk on over to the bulk foods section of your grocery store, grab a scoop and start emptying quinoa into a small bag. We recommend getting between a quarter pound to a half a pound of quinoa, (there should be a scale in this section). If you’re grocery store doesn’t have a bulk section, then maybe a local co-op will have quinoa in bulk. We encourage you to try this new food out if you haven’t already because it’s definitely good for you and seriously easy to make.

Prep time: 10 minutes

Total time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

1/4 cup of quinoa

1/2 cup of water

4 strawberries

1/2 an apple

1 cutie or half of an orange

Directions

1. Empty water into a small or medium sized pot and put the stove on high. Let the water boil and while you wait for this to happen start rinsing and then cutting up the fruit into small pieces.

2. Once the water has boiled, lower the heat to medium low and empty the quinoa into the pot. Place a cover on top or just let it sit for about 10 minutes. Stir occasionally to make sure the bottom doesn’t become burned.

3. After it’s cooked all the way, empty the quinoa into a bowl and add your fruit into the bowl as well. You can use your hands or a fork to move the fruit around and then place in the refrigerator.

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I really prefer this salad cold but you can try it warm as well. You may need to leave it in the fridge for about 15-20 minutes. When I made this salad the first time, I made it about 3 hours before our meal and left it in the fridge for awhile. Before dinner I took the salad out of the fridge and presented it for one of our family dinners one night and it was really an unexpected hit. Try out this recipe and let us know what you think! Also, let us know if you substituted any of the fruit listed above for something else!

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Breaking the Tradition with Penne Pasta

1 Mar

Every Monday while I was growing up, it was pasta night. My dad absolutely loves pasta so ultimately we had to grow a love for spaghetti too. Well, when I moved out of the house in 2011, after eating pasta literally every Monday up until then, I was so excited to never eat spaghetti again. Of course, that didn’t happen but I wanted to change it up a bit from the usual spaghetti noodles and meat sauce. This recipe is unique because you don’t use sauce which cuts calories big time and if you really want to use sauce you can.

Broccoli, Sausage & Penne Pasta

Serving size: 1

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

Garlic powder

2/3 cup of Penne pasta noodles (any other noodles are fine)

1 sausage

Broccoli (we used about 2 cups)

Mozzarella cheese

Water

Directions

1. Get a small to medium-sized pot and fill it about half way up with water. Shake some garlic powder and pepper in there. Put the stove on high and let the water boil.

2. Start cutting up the sausage into small pieces and throw the pieces on the George Foreman grill or you can get out a frying pan to cook the sausage for about 8 minutes.

3. Rinse and then cut the stems off of the broccoli so you just get the tops. Throw these into the boiling water, as well as the penne noodles.

4. Turn the heat down on the stove to about medium and let the noodles and broccoli cook for about 10 minutes.

5. Once the sausage is fully cooked, (it should look dark brown/burnt) take it off the grill or pan and put it onto your plate or bowl. Do the same for the noodles and broccoli but strain them first.

6. Throw some mozzarella cheese on top and you are good to go!

 

Did your family every have any crazy dining traditions like Taco Tuesday or Meatloaf Monday? Over the years I’ve definitely ran into some people who have these traditions and we want to know yours! Grub different gang & have a great day!

Gotta have a little red wine to accompany it!

Kabobs, Anyone?

29 Feb

When I think of skewers or kabobs, I think of summertime! My mom would always make my brothers and I work like little assembly workers stacking marinated pieces of beef and vegetables on the bamboo sticks when we were little. Actually, I think I was also in charge of the skewers last year for my brother’s graduation party but regardless, it’s just a great, easy food to make for a bunch of people. Although, if you don’t plan on feeding 25+ people (even though this could be a great party food recipe!) we improvised a little and made this recipe to feed one person. So, to kick off the wonderful weather we have been having in the Midwest, we want to give everyone a taste of summer here at College Grubbin’! I have to add that this recipe does require the George Forman grill or real grill for the best results and a little bit of time to marinate the meat & veggies. Even if you’re stuck in the snow, kick back, make some skewers, grab a beer & reminisce about summer, it’s only a couple of months away!

Serving size: 1

Prep time: 10 minutes

Grill time: 5 minutes

Marinade time: 15 minutes

Ingredients 

2 bamboo skewer sticks or metal ones (we got ours at Kroger for $2)

1 chicken breast

8 cherry tomatoes

4 slices of mushrooms

¼ red pepper

¼ yellow pepper

¼ purple onion or white onion

3 teaspoons of Teriyaki sauce

Minced garlic

Directions

1. First things first, make the marinade. I grabbed a large Ziploc bag and poured 3 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce into the bag and about half a tablespoon of minced garlic in as well. You can gauge how much garlic you want in your marinade depending on your preference.

2. Cut medium-sized square pieces from your onion and chicken breast. I got about 12 cubes of chicken and 8 pieces of onion. Place these items plus the mushrooms in the Ziploc bag, seal it shut, shake up the mixture a little bit and put the bag in the refrigerator.

3. Once you let the chicken marinate, start cutting up the peppers into about 4 square pieces for each red and yellow pepper. You might think that there are a lot of pieces but when you put them on the skewer they tend bunch up together and shrink.

4. After the chicken, mushrooms, and onions marinate for 15 minutes (you can have them marinate for a lot longer too), open the bag and start arranging all of the veggies and meat on the skewer, (don’t forget the cherry tomatoes!). I like every 2 or 3 pieces of veggies and then one cube of meat. You should be able to fill up both skewer sticks!

5. Turn on the George Forman grill and let them sizzle for about 3 minutes and then flip the skewer over. Allow about 5 minutes of cooking time.  Make sure the chicken is cooked all the way before taking them off the grill!

Now, you are ready to enjoy your skewers! I kind of burned the second one and it was still amazing! They are so delicious, but a little messy, so I would not suggest making this meal for a date. You definitely  might scare your date a little while you are chowing down. Happy grubbin’!

An Italian Favorite Made Skinnier

28 Feb

Who doesn’t love Italian food seriously? All those carbs and cheeses sooo delicious but not so great for swimsuit season. So I have decided to recreate one of my favorite dishes that is low in carbs and make it as skinny as possible to fill my Italian craving.

Chicken Parmesan

Prep time: 10 – 12 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

1 egg

¼ cup bread crumbs

1 cup tomato sauce (look for low sodium)

½ cup shredded Low Fat Mozzarella cheese

Parmesan Cheese

1 Chicken breast

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Crack the egg in a bowl removing the shell. Dip the chicken breast in the egg covering it almost completely. Then in a separate bowl add the breadcrumbs and dip the chicken into that bowl to cover the breast with breadcrumbs.
  3. In a small baking dish place breaded chicken. Add the tomato sauce over the chicken so it is completely covered. Then spread the cheese over the sauce adding as much or as little as you would like. Lastly top it off by sprinkling a little Parmesan cheese on it.
  4. Place in the over for about 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and cheese is melted.

BOOM DONE!

This is a very easy recipe that feels like a little taste of home. As you can see by the pictures we added some steamed broccoli but feel free to add any vegetable you prefer.

We want to feature more Italian dishes that are easy to make but we need your help! Please submit your recipes to collegegrubbin@gmail.com. Keep Grubbin’!

Stir Fry for Dummies

27 Feb

One of the healthiest and easiest dishes to make for either lunch or dinner is a stir fry. The beauty of this meal is that the technique is the same but you can make it a 1000 different ways with whatever you have in your kitchen. It is also virtually impossible to mess up, making it the perfect meal for those us sometimes cooking challenged.

Chicken Teriyaki Stir Fry

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 15-17 minutes

Ingredients

½ cup chopped onions

½ cup chopped zucchini squash

½ cup sliced Portobello mushroom

½ cup sliced red pepper

½ cup broccoli florets

1 sliced Chicken Breast

¼ cup reduced sodium Teriyaki sauce

Directions

  1. Spray large skillet with nonstick oil spray (PAM) and heat over medium heat
  2. Add chicken, onions, zucchini, mushrooms, red pepper, and broccoli and let cook for 15 minutes stirring occasionally
  3. Add Teriyaki sauce and cook for another 3 minutes or until chicken is cooked and stir in Teriyaki sauce

Serve immediately and Enjoy!

 

Now seriously how easy is this meal? Create your own stir fry and let us know what ingredients you used! Keep Grubbin’!

Using the Crockpot: Gramma Edition

24 Feb

I don’t know about you guys but some foods remind me of being home. It’s hard being 2,000 miles away from home; especially when I get back from class and I’m beat & tired, sometimes I just want my mom’s homemade chicken noodle soup. After cleaning out our refrigerator one Sunday, my roommates and I found an unreal amount of vegetables that were never opened or used. At first, someone said that we should just throw it all away, but I decided to use all of those veggies for homemade chicken noodle soup. With the crockpot handy and a couple of hours to kill, we started to experiment. This was one of the best creations we’ve ever concocted and it seriously took no skill at all. Don’t worry if you don’t have all of these ingredients, substitute some of the veggies with whatever you like!

Prep time: 25 minutes

Cook time: 3 hours minimum

Ingredients

Carrots (preferably the long stalks)

¼ of an onion

A box of chicken broth

1-2 fillets of chicken (can be fresh or frozen)

2-3 stalks of celery

1 potato

A box of pasta noodles (we like the bow ties, or if you don’t have any pasta noodles, you can use ramen noodles, we won’t judge you too much.)

Directions

1. Pour the box of chicken broth into the crockpot (please clean the crockpot before you use it!) then fill about ¾ of the crockpot with water. This is the time you can start adding garlic powder, pepper, salt or whatever.

2. Now that you’ve got the broth, start chopping up and throwing your ingredients into the pot. These can go in any order!

3. Rinse then peel the carrots. Chop up the carrots in small pieces, the amount you chop up is up to you! Place them into the pot.

4. Repeat the steps listed above for the potato. I like to make these bigger chunks.

5. Repeat the steps listed above for the celery, except don’t peel the celery stalks because that’s weird and cut off the top of the celery where the little leaves are.

6. Cut an onion into small, fine pieces and scatter them in the pot.

7. Rinse the chicken, or let the meat thaw (I quicken up this process by letting the meat sit under hot water.) Then start cutting off all of the fat and then cutting the meat into stripes.

8. After all of your ingredients are in the crockpot, turn it on low and let it sit.

Warning! Notice that you never added noodles to this, I find that when I leave the noodles sitting with the soup, they get really mushy and gross. I like to do this all in the morning or before I leave for class. Then when I get home about an hour before I’m ready to start grubbin’ I pour the whole box of noodles of into the pot.

8. Once you put the noodles into the crockpot and taste the broth to make sure it is tasting good, (you can always improvise and put more spices in there!) start putting that warm goodness into your bowl & chow down.

Since we go to school in a very cold Midwest college town, coming home to a bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup is such an added bonus to my day. I know what you’re probably thinking… that a can of Campbell’s chicken noodle soup is calling your name instead. That garbage is full of sodium, preservatives and not as hearty. Let us know what you put into your homemade chicken noodle soup!

"The Zonemag"

Mexican Mosh Pit

23 Feb

Since we had a bunch of leftover red beans and ground chicken from our featured kale gumbo recipe on the site we decided to try to find another recipe including those ingredients. We ended up finding a Mexican lasagna, which, leave it to Rachel Ray to post a recipe that left us scratching our heads a little when we first read it. It definitely wasn’t what we were expecting when I started to stir all the ingredients together but it definitely turned out to be amazing! The original recipe that we tested out for dinner could easily feed four and since this is cooking for college students we decided to modify that recipe a little to make it about one to two serving sizes.

Although, one of my favorite days of the week is Thursday when we host family dinner and this recipe would be PERFECT for that! If there is one thing I learned living with 4 other girls in college is that collectively, we eat a lot of food. One of our room mates will have leftover pasta sauce, another will have steamed broccoli and a roomie might have a loaf of garlic bread. Put that all together with some noodles and bam, you’ve got yourself a nice family style meal. Some weeks we invite friends and tell them to bring over alcohol for our meal which is perfect because all you have to do is cook an appetizer and you get free alcohol out of it! One week, a friend of ours made homemade sangria and let me tell you, it was fantastic! Talk to your roomies or friends about family dinner & get that tradition rolling!

Prep time: 3 minutes

Total time: 25 minutes

Ingredients

¼ of the package of ground meat (we used chicken)

¼ cup of diced green bell peppers

2 tablespoons of diced onion

½ can of stewed tomatoes

½ can of red beans or black beans (strained & rinsed)

3 fajita sized tortillas

½ teaspoon of cumin or pepper

½ cup of Mexican shredded cheese

Pam cooking spray or olive oil

Directions

1. Use Pam to coat the frying pan and turn on the stove to medium high heat, after preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

2. Place the ground chicken, diced onions, beans, tomatoes, bell peppers and cumin in the pan. Start to mix everything together with a spatula.

3. Let the chicken cook fully, this should take about 8 minutes. While waiting, get out a baking dish (we used a glass one but ceramic dishes are fine too) and coat the dish with Pam. Place a tortilla on the bottom of the dish.

4. Once your chicken is cooked, start scooping a layer of the mixture onto the first tortilla. This will be your first layer, then cover it with a sprinkle of cheese and tortilla. Create one more layer on top of that with the mixture then sprinkle with cheese and cover with a tortilla. Top it off with some more cheese and place in the oven.

5. Wait about 8-10 minutes and take it out of the oven. The cheese is a great indicator if the lasagna is cooked, if its browned then take it out.

 

Now you have a slice of Mexican lasagna all to yourself! You can add salsa, guacamole or sour cream to your slice for additional flavor. If you are kind enough to share with your roomies & friends just double this recipe and let us know if they enjoyed it. Make sure to keep grubbin’ & check back for more family style recipes!