Early Thanksgiving for 108

It’s been a busy week in our Cougar Kitchen preparing 108 meals. I may take off for my own family meal, lol. I’m so proud of all my students preparing a grand feast. We blessed 18 McKinney Vento students (our homeless population) and 20 janitors in our school. Twenty teachers donated $10 to cover the cost of all our meals. With careful planning and shopping sales, I was able to do the meal for about $200!

Click here to see our album from start to finish.

Crock Pot Pork Loin BBQ


This super easy recipe was made by husband on my teacher work day. I had the ingredients ready and he volunteered to start it in the crock pot. I came home to a delicious easy meal that cooked itself all day. like mine with dill pickles and a side of slaw. I also like homemade sweet potato fries.

I had enough leftovers to freeze for future sandwiches. This is so easy you must give it a try for a busy night.


  • 2-3 lbs pork tenderloin
  • 16 ounces store-bought barbecue sauce, divided into thirds
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 2 -3 garlic cloves, minced
  • salt and pepper


  1. Salt and pepper pork loin inside crock pot.
  2. Add onion and garlic.
  3. Pour about 1/3 of the BBQ sauce over pork loin.
  4. Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours.
  5. Shred with two forks.
  6. Add the rest of the BBQ sauce and serve immediately.

Do you make your own BBQ?

Baking Bread for the Needy


I’ve been so busy teaching yeast breads this week, I haven’t had time to post my home freezer cooking. However, our Cougar Kitchen baked eight braided loaves for our local homeless shelter. I felt like that was worthy of sharing. We partner with King Arthur Learn Bake Share Program. I highly suggest applying for it if you teach in any capacity.

Happy work week. I hope to share more this upcoming week.


Freezer Cooking Wendy’s Chili and More

IMG_2918 (1)I’m in love with this Wendy’s chili that is freezer friendly and so easy to make on a busy school day. I love how it tastes exactly like Wendy’s with the kidney and pinto beans. I love how I can crock the raw turkey in the soup and break it a part at the end of the day. Have I said how much I love this easy chili?

IMG_2920I also love how easy Asian Honey chicken comes together on a busy night. I usually have frozen brown rice that’s thawing and my Asian chicken in my thawing box. I add a side of steamed broccoli and voila, easy peasy dinner night, especially when my husband stir-fries the chicken for me.

IMG_2927And since I made this copycat Panara broccoli cheese soup in my Cougar Kitchen at school, I thought I might as well duplicate it at home. It’s awesome with Southern cornbread, which is also freezer friendly.

Oh how I can not live without my freezer and make ahead meals. Have you prepared any easy meals lately?


Apple Brownies




Fall is in the air with these apple brownies. We love these tasty morsels for dessert. I caught my husband eating them for breakfast. They are so delicious warmed and served with vanilla ice cream.


You can imagine how quickly two of these disappear in my family of six.

IMG_2933My daughter approves and I know your family will too.

Apple Brownies


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened (1 stick)
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup apples, peeled and diced


  • 1 Tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 Tablespoons cinnamon
  • walnut pieces, optional


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Spray a 9×13 dish with cooking spray.
  3. In a bowl, cream together butter, brown sugar & 1/2 cup white sugar.
  4. Add eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, salt & baking powder, mix well.
  5. Add flour and mix again. Batter will be thicker than brownies at this stage.
  6. Fold in diced apples. Batter should begin to thin to more brownie like consistency.
  7. Spread mixture evenly into prepared pan.
  8. In a small dish, mix topping. Sprinkle on top of apple mixture. Throw on some walnut pieces if you like!
  9. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until edges are golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  10.  Cool and cut into brownie squares. A plastic knife or plastic utensil works best for cutting brownies. Store leftovers in the refrigerator.

Be sure to try all of our favorite apple desserts here.

I made two pans and wrapped for lunches. Will you make a double batch for fall lunches?

Blue Apron Saves My Week


Sometimes my school schedule prevents me from grocery shopping for my own family. There, I said it. I shop for three foods classes during the school week and I try to do my family shopping on Fridays. Sometimes, I’m just too tired and don’t make it until Saturday morning which is not my favorite time. If I have weekend plans like this past one, I don’t shop until the following week. It’s a mad cycle of making list after list and shopping after shopping trip.

So, I decided to give Blue Apron a try. Blue Apron is a fresh ingredient and recipe delivery service that helps chefs of all levels cook incredible meals at home. That includes me :) I really needed this service when I didn’t have time to shop last Friday. Instead, I went to watch my daughter cheer and my football students play ball. I killed two birds in one stone.

Saturday morning I drove to SC to visit my parents. My oldest son decided not to adopt our foster dog because he wanted a puppy. Needless to say, we found the most adorable one in Greenville and brought it home on Sunday. I never made it to the grocery store until Tuesday.

I’ve neglected a big freezer cooking day and had very little to eat. That’s when I decided to give Blue Apron a chance. I’ve been pondering this idea since my colleague told me about it.

The idea of supporting local farmers and fresh ingredients delivered on ice intrigued me. I’m not one to pay for convenience, but it sounds so reasonable and looks fresh and delicious.

This Saturday, I’m receiving a box of refrigerated ingredients to make the following three meals. I’m thankful each recipe is under 30 minutes, though I prefer less. Pricing is $9.99 a meal and shipping is always free. I especially like the fact that I can skip any week and cancel any time. There’s also cooking tutorials to go along with each recipe. Now that’s right up my alley for my husband to cook the meal when I’m not at home, LOL.

I did my teacher homework and Blue Apron got better reviews compared to other delivery services here. I think this will be very helpful and delicious on my super busy school weeks. I’m looking forward to giving this a try, knowing I can skip as many weeks as I like, until I’m busy again.

I’m guessing some of you are busy like me and need to skip the grocery store. Blue Apron is my solution for my crazy weeks. As an affiliate, here’s some money back in your purse.

$30 Off Your First Blue Apron Order

I’m getting these three mouth-watering recipes for 29.94 with my applied coupon and you can do the same when you try it for the first time.

There’s a family option to serve four with a higher price point, but I’m starting small to see how we like it. Even if my husband and I use it as a date night, it’s going to be worth it! Here’s what we’re having this weekend!

Fresh Pimento Cheeseburgers
Fresh Pimento Cheeseburgers
with Collard Green & Carrot Slaw
Crispy Chicken Milanese
Crispy Chicken Milanese
with Warm Brussels Sprout & Potato Salad


Seared Cod & Udon Noodles
Seared Cod & Udon Noodles
with Shiitake Broth & Togarashi-Spiced Cucumber













Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links and all these opinions are my own. I’m one psyched momma ready to skip the grocery store;)

In order for a Blue Apron customer to redeem either offer above, once the landing page has loaded for that specific offer, they only need to click the orange “Redeem Offer” button (in the top dark orange).   However, note, that should a customer not redeem the offer via that button, the promo is still auto-applied during the check out process.

Therefore, NO coupon/promo code is required. Happy skipping the grocery store, friends!