Category Archives: Quick and Simple

Garlic Parmesan Green Beans

Most often when I read a food blog, I tend to get mostly main dish recipes.  I wanted to change things up a little and share with you a simple and easy side dish.  Garlic Parmesan Green Beans!  I purchased a ton of green beans from the farmers market at the end of the summer so I would have some during the winter.

I love green beans and so does my family, but we don’t like the “squeaky” texture of green beans that often comes with frozen green beans from the store.  I took my fresh green beans, snapped them and washed them and let them dry before I packaged them for the freezer.  When I’m ready to use them, I pull them out and let them thaw overnight in the fridge before using.

For this side dish I added my green beans to a Ziploc bag with a squirt of olive oil and a couple pinches (depending on amount of green beans used and taste preference) of garlic salt and fresh grated Parmesan.  Close the bag and massage the bag to coat the beans in the mixture.  This step could also be done in a bowl and mixed by hand.


Pour beans into a baking dish and bake in the oven at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes.  The cheese should be melted and the beans slightly golden.

One of the things I enjoy most about being a first time mom is watching my sons imagination grow.  It changes on a daily basis and over the last couple weeks he’s really started to embrace the super hero “phase”.  We watched the Pixar movie The Incrediables a few weeks ago and it reminded me that a friend had gotten my son and my husband matching super hero capes as a gift.  Well we finally brought them out.  And now when he gets dressed in the morning that’s the first thing he asks for and wants to wear out is his cape.  He is truly my little super hero.  And incidentally, he loooves to borrow his Grammi’s glasses and sport those around.  I truly love this kid and love being his mom!!

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Quick and Simple 1 – Pasta and Sauce

Whether a working mom or a stay at home mom, quick and simple dinners are a must for busy days.  Not only does a good simple home cooked meal help the budget, it helps the waistline by not having to eat out!

This was exactly our dinner the other night.  We had fun pasta, picked out by Mr. Caleb himself, a jar of marinara, some meat and a salad.  I’ve mentioned before the awesome authentic Italian grocery store we have in the area.  I like to go with a friend every couple months and stock up on their great products.  This is where I purchase my bulk Italian sausage, breakfast sausage and fresh sliced pepperoni as well as a variety of fun pastas and cheeses.  The Muir Glen Organic Pasta Sauce is something I like to pick up at Sprouts, especially when it’s on sale.  They have a wide variety of flavors and we love all of them.

Here’s my quick and simple dinner:

1/2 lb italian sausage (or meat of choice)
1/2 package of favorite pasta (cooked according to directions)1/2 jar of favorite pasta sauce
Favorite shredded cheese to top
Salad of choice or other vegetable

First cook the pasta according to the package directions.


While the pasta is cooking, cook your meat of choice.  Once done, drain any excess grease and return the meat to the pan.


Add the pasta sauce to the meat and continue to heat while the pasta gets done.


You can mix the pasta and the meat sauce together, but my son usually likes his pasta plain so we don’t mix it.  We choose fresh spinach and a little organic ranch dressing on top and sprinkled some fresh grated Parmesan cheese.  YUM!


These items are usually staples in our home so that no matter whats going on that day, I can have a good home cooked meal on the table in under 30 minutes.

I’d love to hear what your quick and easy or go to meals are for those busy days?