- Food and Cooking
Easy Recipes for Living on Your Own
Simple Fixins for Living on Your Own
Whether you just came fresh out of college or have been single for a while, I put together a few of my recipes that I like to cook that are easy and low maintenance.
Chicken Pot Pie
Yum, yum. Such a wonderful comfort food. This recipe can be made in two different ways. I'll try to explain both without causing confusion. The first I will give you is made with chicken corn chowder. Yes, chicken corn chowder. Mmm....delicious!
Cookware: 9 inch Pie Dish
Pillsbury Dough Crust- This is in the freezer section where you would find the cookies. It comes with two layers of ready made roll out dough.
Chicken Breast Strips- Or you can buy chicken breasts and just cut them up. Or you can go down the canned food aisle where the tuna is and buy the canned already chopped up chicken to save time.
2- 18 oz cans of Campbell’s Chicken Corn Chowder Soup
1- 10 oz can of Cream of Chicken
Frozen Vegetables- Chicken Corn Chowder has vegetables in it but you might want to add a few more vegetables if you want extra.
Can of potatoes- Or chop up and boil your own. It just takes longer to boil and soften in order to place it in the pot pie.
- For crust, follow box instructions. It will tell you to place bottom crust in oven and let bake for about 10-15 min. or until lightly golden. Remember it will cook a second time so make sure it’s not too dark as to not burn it.
- Season and cook chicken in skillet until done. Chop it up into chunks if you bought chicken breast strips. Cook veggies before placing in pie as well. Once everything is cooked, mix with Campbell’s Chicken Corn Chowder, can of Cream of Chicken along with potatoes. Place combined stuffing into pie. Don’t be afraid to pile it on. When it looks like too much, add in some more.
- Gently unroll top layer crust as to not tear it and lay on top of pie folding it under the bottom crust (or the edges of the dish if your bottom layer shrunk) and kind of press the two layers together. Try to keep this second layer in the fridge until you are ready to use it. If allowed to get too warm the crust might smoosh (real technical term) together, causing it to be hard to unroll. So try and apply your crust between a semi-soft/firm consistency.
- Tear up strips of foil about 2 inches wide and 6 inches long (about 6 pieces), in order to place and secure over the edges of the crust so they won’t burn. This step is real important if you don't want your crusts burnt. I somehow keep managing to forget to do this step and regret it every time because when I finally remember to do so, the dish is too hot to touch and it becomes way too complicated to add them on. So be sure to apply the foil on the pie crust edges BEFORE you put it in the oven. Trust me, so much easier. I normally do not poke holes in the top crust because pie filling tends to spill out which can already occur if the crust splits open but if you want to go ahead.
- Once placed in oven (heavy, isn’t it?) let bake on 350 or 375 degrees for about 1 hr. This may vary so just keep an eye on it until all of the crust is completely golden brown and hard when you tap on it. I like my crust crispy but of course if you do not then take it out when it’s ready for you.
*If you do not like Chicken Corn Chowder you can use two of the large 26 oz (I think that's the size) cans of Cream of Chicken, Mushroom, or Broccoli. Really anything with a thick consistency can be used. Whichever one you choose would be left up to your taste buds. You would also have to purchase a bag of mixed veggies. If you don't like the veggies in a bag of mixed vegetables just take out what you don't need. Time consuming, I know.
I love photographing my food but for some reason I could not find it for my Swiss Chi Che. And since I kinda made it up there's no picture of it anywhere else. But it looks like a big dish of stuffing because it's the top layer of the dish. Sorry.
Swiss Cheese Chicken (Swiss Che Chi)
Cookware: 8 x 8 Square Dish
4 or 5 Bonless Skinless Thighs (Doesn't have to be boneless I suppose)
Kraft Swiss cheese- I tried it with the real stuff and didn't like the flavor but it's your choice if you want to.
Stuffing- Stove Top or whatever brand of boxed stuffing.
Non-Stick Cooking Spray
- Spray dish. Place chicken in a 9 x 13 inch square class dish. Lightly squeeze Honey Mustard over chicken. I normally do a light criss cross pattern (like a waffle fry) with mine. But if you are spooning it out just put a thin layer over the chicken.
- Place cheese over chicken. 4 slices should be enough if you are using a 9 x 13 inch square class dish
- Spread already cooked stuffing over top about a cup will do just fine. Just enough to cover over the chicken.
*Season meat with whatever you’d like: Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Poultry Seasoning, Salt, Pepper. Cover with foil and bake on 375 degrees for 1hr. 30 min. Let sit uncovered for 15-20 min.
Crock Pot Roast
Cookware: Crock Pot
Non-Stick Spray or Butter
- Season meat. I normally use my staples of Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder and Garlic Powder. I’ve done it so much I don’t really measure anymore but seasoning is easy. Just shake seasoning up in one direction and shake down on the same side back to where you started. Flip meat over and do the same thing.
- Spray crock pot with Pam or something to prevent sticking. If you only have butter then smear butter throughout crock pot. Just thin enough to prevent sticking. Place roast in crock pot. Place veggies on top of roast. If you’d like, cut up potatoes and add mixed veggies in or or individual bags of the veggies that you like. If you use broccoli be careful. If placed too early in the crock pot they could turn to mush. Placing in about an hour to an hour and a half before it’s done will keep them crisp.
- Let cook in crock pot for 8-9 hours or on low or 4 – 5 hours.
Broiler Slow Cooker Ribs
Cookware: Crock Pot
3 1/2 pounds pork loin back ribs
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon black pepper
4 tsp. minced garlic
2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cola
1 1/2 cup barbecue sauce (I use Sweet Baby Rays Chipotle sauce)
- Spray inside of 4 to 5 quart slow cooker with cooking spray.
- Cut ribs into sections. Mix brown sugar, pepper, garlic and salt; rub mixture into ribs. Place ribs in slow cooker. Pour cola over ribs.
- Cover and cook on low for 8 to 9 hours or until tender. Remove ribs from slow cooker. Drain and discard liquid.
- Brush ribs with barbecue sauce. Place barbecue in oven. Put oven on Broil. Broil for about 8 min. This should put a crispy texture to it. Keep an eye on ribs as to not burn them. Turn over if you want the same effect on the other side.
Ricotta Cheese Filled Ravioli
Cookware: 9 x 13 Rectangle Dish
1 package of frozen ravioli with ricotta cheese
2 jars of spaghetti sauce
2-3lb of ground beef (I like it meaty, if you want to put less meat it's up to you)
- Season meat. I normally use my staples of Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder and Garlic Powder. I’ve done it so much I don’t really measure anymore but seasoning is easy. Just shake seasoning up in one direction over meat and shake back down in the other direction until you end up where you started. Basically you're just coating your meat. All this can be done while the meat is in skillet. Flip meat over a few times to coat everything. Cook til done on Med/High. Don't overcook, it will sit in the oven with the ravioli and cook further. Turn heat down to low. Place sauce over cooked meat and let simmer. I seem to think this helps the meat and sauce meld together a little bit more.
- Place a layer of thawed ravioli in dish, then put down a layer of your meat and sauce mixture and put the rest of the ravioli in and place the rest of the sauce and meat on top in a 9 x 13 dish. Cover with foil. Let cook for 1 1/2 hrs on 350 degrees.
To find out what basic cookware you should have when first living on your own check out this hub: Survival Cookware for Living On Your Own.