I’m not kidding when I say, the casserole looks way better than the leftovers you see pictured above.  So just imagine a 9×13 dish filled up with lots of goodness.  The cheese bubbling at the top is just the beginning. OMGeeeee!  I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.    The original one didn’t have meat so I added ground beef.  I also added more cheese. Because that’s how we roll. 😀 You can easily alter the recipe to your liking once you get familiar with the taste.  I added a little garlic salt and green onions.  Next time I am going to try it with shredded chicken and brown rice.  The best part about this dish, it’s healthy! Let me know how it turns out!


1 cup of cooked Quinoa

1 lb of cooked ground beef (I seasoned it with a little garlic salt)

1 (10oz) can of mild enchilada sauce *I used Las Palmas. I bought 2 cans and used a little more than 10oz since I added the beef.

1 (4.5oz) can of fire roasted chopped green chiles *I used La Victoria

1/2 cup of frozen corn or canned corn *I used frozen

1/2 cup of canned black beans drained

2 Tablespoons of chopped fresh cilantro

1/2 teaspoon of cumin

1/2 teaspoon of chili powder

Kosher salt and pepper to taste

3/4 cup of shredded cheddar cheese divided

3/4 cup of mozzarella cheese divided

1 tomato diced

1 avocado halved and diced

Diced green onions


In a large saucepan cook the quinoa according to package instructions.  If you are going to use ground beef in your casserole, brown while quinoa is cooking.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  While ground beef is browning and quinoa is cooking, lightly oil a 9×13 baking dish.  If you don’t add meat, use an 8×8 dish.

In a large bowl stir cooked quinoa, cooked ground beef or chicken, corn, black beans, season with salt and pepper, cilantro, cumin and chili powder.  Stir in 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese and 1/2 cup of the mozzarella cheese.

Pour mixture into baking dish.  Top off with remaining cheese (I added more).  I also added green onions on top. Bake casserole for about 15 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Garnish with diced avocado and tomato.





St Patrick’s Day

Hope everyone had a great St. Patty’s Day!  We had a little holiday celebration here at Casa de Mitchell.  It all started with a holiday breakfast.  While Tim was at work I whipped up a batch of green waffles, topped it off with whip cream and lucky charms for my wee lad.  He was thrilled!  I love letting him dig in with his fork or with his hands.  Whatever he chooses, he never fails to get it all over his face and head.  Why isn’t whip cream sticky proof?  Someone needs to invent that…just sayin.





Since Tim is half Irish, I promised him an Irish feast.  Bailey’s cupcakes included (adults only).  For my very first time, I cooked corn beef and cabbage.  It was actually my first time tasting it too.  It’s definitely an acquired taste, but I don’t mind it once a year.  I cut up some potatoes, carrots, and onions and threw all of it into the crockpot along with the beef.  I love crockpot meals cause all you have to do is throw everything in and wait several hours.  And boom! Done!  It’s Guinness!  I mean genius!


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Festive bow tie pasta for the young ones.  I knew they wouldn’t like the corn beef so this is what I planned for them with rainbow cupcakes for dessert.


The Irish cream cupcakes were to die for!  I skipped the last part of the recipe, which was adding MORE fudge sauce.  I wouldn’t mind it, but there wasn’t anytime.  Plus I figured the chocolate ganache filling was enough for now..mmm so good.  I’m still learning how to use a piping bag and decorative tips so excuse the poor frosting decor.

Bottoms Up! Irish Cream Hot Fudge Cupcakes



  Not my favorite rainbow cupcake recipe, but they passed.  I will definitely try a different one next time.


Where’s my Milk?

Woke up this morning, as usual, around 6:30am.  Today that’s actually at 7:30am with Spring forward.  Liam slept in a little later.  Great, this whole time change is really gonna throw him off his schedule.   Damn you Spring Forward!  Oh, who am I kidding!  With this little guy, it changes daily so not going to stress out about it too much, until….

I opened the fridge and noticed the gallon of milk was ALL GONE!!!  Someone is about to be crabby pants in 5.2 seconds if he doesn’t get his milk.  Damit! I forgot to buy a gallon yesterday evening like I said I was gonna do.  Instead Tim and I vegged out on the couch to watch American Idol and Vikings.  I know random right?

Anyways, back to this morning, I decided to act like I was not reaching in for the milk, but this 17 month old is pretty damn smart.  I closed the fridge and BOOM there he was, standing, looking at me straight in the eyes.  You can just see he was ready to chug his favorite drink in the world.  I mean Liam drinks his milk like there’s a shortage in California.  He knew exactly what was going on.  I quickly snatched him up and strapped him into the stroller.  Thank God we have a store next door to us!  Did he scream and cry the entire way? YES.  Did he kick off his bear slippers in the store? YES.  Did he throw his toys on the street? YES.  And did they have whole milk? Noooope!!  They ran out!! WTF?!!

Low fat milk it is!

We hurried home.  If anyone knows the sound of a baby crying nonstop… WOW!  I wanted to pull every strand of hair on my head, especially in the elevator up to our place on the 3rd floor.  The slowest elevator I’ve ever been in.    We finally got home and I quickly filled up his sippy cup.  In 5.2 seconds I had a happy little guy.  And when he’s happy, I’m happy.  So I did what any other awesome mother would do… I made the best peanut butter jelly sandwiches for Liam and myself.  And we ate on the couch watching his favorite toons.  Your welcome Liam.

The life of a mother…




Made with LOVE

I’ve already decided that every holiday I would make a special treat for Liam and the hubby.   This Valentines Eve I  made the traditional Rice Krispie Treats.  I love the idea of something simple and quick these days.  3 ingredients?  Sold!  Once cooled I used a heart shaped cookie cutter to make a few hearts.  Too bad I didn’t have any red or pink sprinkles, cause that would’ve made them look even more festive.  Maybe next year.  I stuck a small lollipop stick at the bottom of each heart and covered them with iridescent cellophane.  Super cute and made with LOTS OF LOVE!

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Day 8: French Toast for Brunch

Day 8 of our 25 Days of Christmas list was make French toast for brunch.  It ended up being an impromptu gathering with a few great friends of ours.  I decided to make it into a “French Toast Bar,” mimosas, pigs in a blanket, and left over mini apple pies included.  Tim’s best friend, Theresa, had an awesome idea to add to our festive afternoon.  “Let’s make a gingerbread house with Liam!”  You don’t have to twist my arm to do anything festive this year, especially with our love bug.  Even though he can’t build the house entirely, he can help by snacking on some of the goodies and say his favorite  word “Wow!”  He also enjoyed eating the mini marshmallows during our snowball fight in the living room.


The French toast was AMAZING! (recipe below)  Everyone really enjoyed it.. thank goodness because this was my first attempt. Whew!







What you need:

  • French toast bread (thick kind)
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon of honey
  • 1 Teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 Tablespoon of butter
  • Hot maple syrup
  • Powdered sugar (optional)

Whisk together eggs, honey, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.  On low heat melt butter in pan (I sprayed nonstick olive oil in pan prior so that nothing sticks).  Dip both sides of bread into mixture .  Not too much cause you don’t want it too soggy.  Fry in pan 2-3 minutes on both sides until golden brown.  Then sprinkle powdered sugar on top and finish with the warm maple syrup of your choice!

Viola!  Amazing French toast!


Mini Salted Caramel Apple Pies

The sound of salted caramel pies really caught my attention when browsing for a recipe on Pinterest.  I’m a little hesitant when I have to make the crust from scratch cause I always end of screwing it up.  But these were really fun to make and I love mini desserts!  The only tweaking I have to do is add more apple and caramel pieces to each pie the next time.  Oh, and complete the dessert with vanilla ice cream… YUM!  These cute pies would be perfect for gifts.  Just wrap them up in something festive or pile them into a holiday box and viola!

25 Days of Christmas

Day 6: Bake mini apple pies and give to friends and family.




Recipe from:  Just  a Taste


For the dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1/2 cup cold sour cream

For the filling:
2 cups small diced (peeled) Granny Smith apples
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
8 store-bought soft caramels, roughly chopped
Large flake sea salt I used regular sea salt
Egg wash (1 egg lightly whisked with 1 Tablespoon water)
Crystal sanding sugar (optional) I used regular sea salt as well


Make the dough:

Whisk together the flour, salt and baking powder in a large bowl.

Add the cubed butter to the bowl and use your fingers to work the butter into the flour until the mixture is the consistency of wet sand.

Stir in the sour cream (the dough will be very wet), and then turn the dough out onto a well-floured work surface.

Knead the dough a few times until it comes together, adding more flour, 1 teaspoon at a time, if the dough is too sticky to handle. Roll the dough into an 8×10-inch rectangle and dust both sides with flour before folding it into thirds as if you were folding a letter.

Rotate the dough 90º and roll it out again into an 8×10-inch rectangle. Fold the dough again into thirds then wrap it securely in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes while you make the filling.

Make the filling:

In a small bowl, combine the apples, lemon juice, cinnamon, sugar and flour, stirring until thoroughly mixed. Set aside.

Assemble the pies:

Preheat the oven to 425ºF.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator and unfold it onto a well-floured surface, rolling it out to a 14×14-inch square.

Using a 3-inch circular cookie cutter or cup, cut out as many circles as possible. Re-roll the scraps and continue cutting out circles until you run out of dough, ensuring you end up with an even number of circles. (You should have approximately 20 3-inch circles.)

Place six of the dough circles on a Silpat or parchment paper-lined cookie sheet. Spoon a small portion of the apple filling into the center of each circle, leaving enough of a border around the filling. Top the apple filling with a portion of the chopped caramels and a pinch of sea salt. Place a second dough circle on top of each filled circle then use a fork to crimp the edges together, sealing each pie.

Brush each pie with the egg wash, and using a sharp knife, cut two or three vents on the top of each pie. Sprinkle the pies with crystal sanding sugar (optional) I used a pinch of sea salt.

Bake the pies for about 15 minutes, or until they’re golden brown.

Remove the pies from the oven and allow them to rest for 10 minutes before serving. Repeat the filling and baking process with the remaining dough circles.


Ultimate Lemon Cheesecake

Yep, another lemon dessert!

If your mouth is watering looking at this picture, just wait to you try this recipe!  It’s soooo delicious you are gonna want to make it again and again.  I don’t know if my baking skills improved or I just got lucky, but this lemon cheesecake is the shiiiiit!!!! I baked my husbands favorite dessert on Veteran’s Day as a nice way of saying “Thank you” for his service to our country.  I must say he was very impressed!

Recipe from: Mountain Mama Cooks



1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs

3 tablespoons sugar

5 tablespoons melted butter


3 8-oz packages cream cheese, room temperature

3 eggs, room temperature

1 1/3 cup + 3 tablespoons sugar, divided

zest of 1 lemon

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon vanilla extract, divided

1 pint sour cream, room temperature


1/2 cup sugar

4 teaspoons cornstarch

1/2 cup water

2 tablespoons lemon juice


  1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
  2. Combine graham crackers, sugar and melted butter in a medium bowl. Press mixture into an 11 inch springform pan (I used a 10 inch round pan). Bake for 8 minutes. Remove from oven and cool while you make filling.
  3. In a food processor, beat cream cheese until completely smooth (I mixed everything by hand). Add eggs, one at a time, mixing until smooth after each addition. Continue to mix, adding 1 1/3 cups sugar a little bit at time until fully mixed in. Add lemon zest, lemon juice and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
  4. Pour cream cheese mixture into cooled graham cracker crust and bake for 40 minutes.
  5. While cheesecake is baking, mix sour cream with remaining 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 3 tablespoons sugar.
  6. Remove cheesecake from oven and gently spread sour cream on top of cheesecake. Return to oven and bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven and cool on a cooling rack for 45 minutes and then transfer to the refrigerator until cheese cake is chilled but not completely cool about an hour.
  7. While cheesecake is cooling, make lemon glaze by whisking together sugar and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Blend in water and lemon juice and bring to a boil, stirring constantly, until thickened. Remove from heat and let cool.
  8. Remove chilled cheesecake from fridge and gently spread the lemon glaze on top of cheesecake. Chill several hours or overnight before serving.


Lemon for the Belly!

For all you lemon lovers out there, holy moly this dessert is delish!  I tried another recipe from my pinterest “Sweet Tooth” board.  I thought this one would be great since my husband is all about lemon.  He loves the taste so much so I added the lemon zest and topped it off with the blackberries. Plus, It doesn’t even call for oil…even better!

Another great thing about this recipe is that it’s soooo easy to make.   I’m not a fan of recipes that call for ingredients I can’t pronounce.  I’m not that advanced yet! Ha! Plus, with a 10 month old, I need something quick!

Light Lemon CakeRecipe from:  Home Grown Beets


1 Package Lemon Cake Mix ( I used Duncan Hines, Moist Deluxe Lemon Supreme)

1 Package Instant Lemon Pudding Mix

1 3/4 Cup Water

3 Egg Whites

3/4 Cup Milk

1/2 tsp Lemon Extract

1 Package Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix

1 Carton (8 oz.) Frozen Whipped Topping

Combine first 4 ingredients. Beat on low speed for 1 minute. Pour into 9 x 13 x 2 in. baking pan coated with non-stick cooking spray. Bake 23-28 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool.

In mixing bowl, combine milk, extract and vanilla pudding mix. Beat on low for 2 minutes. Fold in whipped topping. Spread over cake and refrigerate.

I added the lemon zest and blackberries once served.


Pancake Dippers

Don’t you mamas love Pinterest?  I love the inspiration you can get from all the photos and especially those recipes.  The problem is,  I bet most you have, is that I never go back and actually make them.  So lately, I’ve been cleaning up my boards and organizing them in a way that makes it look more appealing.  Doing that was also a great reminder of all my pins.   So much pinning, I forgot what I had.

So this past Sunday I tried Pancake Dippers.  There’s a little surprise in the…. BACON!!  I didn’t have a cute miniature mason jar to put the syrup in, so I drizzled it on top. Same difference.  Annnd note to self… next time I need to use the ketchup bottle to squeeze out the batter.  Since I didn’t have one, I scooped it out and put it in a large zip lock, but I cut the hole too big.  Wow, mess everywhere! lol

My Review:  The ketchup bottle would have been less messy and I think I’ll  use maple bacon for the next batch. YUM!

Husband’s Review:  “MORE BACON!” (next time I won’t cut them in half)

Food Diaries

I’m not going to lie, eating healthy has been a pain in the ass for me and I do have my moments where I get really frustrated or annoyed with vegetables. ” Sorry broccoli, I just don’t like you right now and your little friends either.”  If I’m going to look like Humpty Dumpty for 9 months I’m going to enjoy it…occasionally ;).

Sprinkles has been one of my FAVORITE places to buy cupcakes, but since they are located in Bum Fucked Egypt Beverly Hills, I decided to try a new place right around the corner. ” Velvet Cupcakes, I Love you.   You are just as delicious as those expensive Sprinkles cupcakes.”  I was even nice enough to buy Tim a Mocha Toffee Crunch.  Needless to say, I ended up eating almost half of his and of course, all of my Red Velvet.

I’m a huge fan of cheese and when I found out I couldn’t have soft cheeses during pregnancy I flipped!  What the hell?  I get really fat, but can’t eat what I really love!  Damn you soft cheese and your growing disease-causing organisms! I am always in the mood for something extra cheesy so I made macaroni cheddar cheese cups.  You can find the recipe here.  Let me know what you think.  I’m going to use more cheese next time…just saying.

Just another craving out of the thousand others I have….Wendy’s Frosty and Fries.  YUM!!

The BEST hamburger I have ever tasted in Los Angeles! The Truffle Burger at Umami.  and I won’t dare leave out the fries and the condiments that come with it.  Tim and I always order our fav 3…garlic aioli, jalapeno ranch, and Umami’s homemade ketchup.  God Bless!  I’m drooling just thinking about it.   If you think you’ve tried a better burger in LA, please share!

Sunday morning at Bob’s Big Boy.  Tim drinks his coffee while patiently waiting for his EXTREME SUPREME breakfast.