Crock Pot Cubed Steak With Gravy

***I am making this as I type this because finally cooler weather has come to Kentucky and of course I am always looking for recipes to enjoy on these wonderful days. Also, because it is Sunday, my standing rule of an old fashioned Sunday dinner is in effect too. I found this recipe at the Country Cook  and so far it smells heavenly! ***


1 packet of au jus gravy mix

1 (10.5 oz) can of cream of chicken condensed soup

1 (10.5 oz) can of French onion soup*

1/2 cup water

1 1/2 – 2 pounds of cubed steak

To Thicken Gravy:

3 TBS. cornstarch

3 TBS cold water


In the bottom of a 6-quart slow cooker (a.k.a crock pot), combine the cream of chicken soup, the au jus gravy packet, French onion soup, and 1/2 cup water. Mix well. 

Put cubed steak in the slow cooker with gravy mixture.

Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours. 

After cooking, it is time to thicken the gravy, in a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and the cold water. 

Stir mixture into the slow cooker. 

Cook on high for 30 minutes until the gravy is thickened. 

Serve with mashed potatoes. 

****IF-sensitive to salt, use the low sodium options on the soups and au jus if available****

COOK’S NOTES: First off, I substituted the French onion soup for beefy mushroom as I am allergic to onions. Secondly, when the meat is done the cooking, I am going to remove it to stir in the thickening mixture, then add it back into the slow cooker for the last 30 minutes on high. It just seems the best way to handle that situation, so that it gets mixed into the gravy well. You could also substitute the French onion soup with golden mushroom soup as well, I wanted a really beefy flavor, so I went with the beefy mushroom.


Oven Roasted Turkey Breast

** I found this recipe at Betty Crocker of all places and let me say it is Ahhhmazing!!! It is so easy to follow and understand which in my case, this was my very first turkey breast I had made all on my own. Normally for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and every other holiday we go with ham, maybe not now. I will say that my grocery store had turkey breasts on sale for .99/lb so I went with a 7 pound turkey breast and while the recipe does call for a smaller one, I had no issues with the bigger turkey breast at all. My turkey breast had a gravy packet included, so I went with that instead of their gravy instructions.**


1 bone-in whole turkey breast (4.5 to 5 pounds), thawed if frozen.

1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted

1/4 cup dry white wine or apple juice

2 Tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon paprika

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 teaspoons cornstarch

2  Tablespoons cold water



Heat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Place turkey, skin side up, on rack in large shallow roasting pan. Insert ovenproof meat thermometer so tip is in the thickest part of the breast and does not touch bone. Roast uncovered for 1 hour.

Mix butter, wine (or apple juice), thyme, salt, paprika, and garlic. Brush turkey with half of the butter mixture. Roast for 30 minutes; brush with remaining butter mixture. Roast about 1 hour longer or until thermometer reads 165 F.

Remove turkey from oven and let stand for 15 minutes for easier carving.

Meanwhile, pour pan drippings into measuring cup; skim fat from drippings. Add enough water to drippings to measure 2 cups. Heat drippings to boiling in 1-quart sauce pan. Mix cornstarch and 2 Tablespoons of cold water; stir into drippings. Boil and stir 1 minute. Serve with turkey.

Cooks Notes: First of all, making sure the turkey is thawed is an important step do not skip it! Secondly, owning an ovenproof meat thermometer is also very handy as my turkey did not have to cook the whole last hour after basting. I set my thermometer to go off at 165 degrees and it did, you also need to think about carry over cooking, it will still cook for a few minutes after taking the turkey out of the oven, my internal temperature got all the way up to 173 degrees. I used the apple juice and it was so good!! Also I made the butter mixture while the turkey was roasting for the first hour and it turned into a paste because the butter had re-hardened some. It was actually a good thing because it made brushing it on easier for me to judge half. As I said the turkey came with a gravy packet and I used that, but my turkey did not have 1/4 cup drippings, so I used chicken broth. It still came out amazing!! 

3- Ingredient Orange Chicken Sauce

** I made this Sunday night and I LOVED it!! I love Chinese food as a whole and when we have little money for take out or even just don’t feel like going anywhere, this recipe is perfect!! My 2 year old LOVED this, so it is great for kids as well! Give this a try I promise you will not be disappointed!**


For the Sauce:

1 cup of BBQ sauce (use your favorite kind, I used Sweet Baby Ray’s)

1 cup sweet orange marmalade (use your favorite kind, I just grabbed the store brand)

2 TBS soy sauce

Crispy Chicken:

3-4 chicken breasts, cut into cubes

1 cup of flour or cornstarch

2 eggs

oil ( I used vegetable oil)


In a sauce pan, add the BBQ sauce, marmalade, and soy sauce. Turn the heat on low and let simmer for 20 minutes, stirring a few times.

Meanwhile, cut your chicken into cubes. In one bowl beat the 2 eggs, while in the other bowl mix the dry ingredients.

Dip pieces of chicken in the egg and then cover in the flour or cornstarch. Set on a clean plate.

Add a thin layer of oil to a frying pan and turn your stove on medium high heat. Once the oil sizzles, add the chicken to the pan in a single layer. Let it cook for 3-5 minutes per side until it is brown and cooked through.

Set the cooked pieces on a plate covered in paper towels, to let it drain.

Once all the chicken is cooked, add it to the sauce and toss.

Serve over white rice or what ever you want.


**COOK’S NOTES: I did not change too much of this recipe. However, I did stop coating the chicken because it was really taking a while, I did use 4 breasts and I had enough for 2 adults and 1 kid for dinner and enough left over for all of us to have it for lunch the next day. You do not have to bread the chicken if you do not want to, it is still good. **

Cast Iron Pizza

DSCN0018*** This recipe is made up of actually three separate recipes, I will post all three here with the links back to where I got them from. I made this last night for the first time and it came out amazing!***

Fail-Proof Pizza Dough is found here at Lauren’s Latest. It is pretty easy and it does never fail! I have made this recipe many times and honestly it has worked out every.single.time. I love those kinds of recipes!

Pizza Dough


1 cup warm water

2 1/4 tsp. active dry yeast

1 TBS honey or sugar

2 tsp. salt

2 TBS olive oil

3 cups of bread flour (give or take a 1/2 cup due to heat and humidity)


In a large mixing bowl, preferably that of a stand mixer, stir yeast and honey into the warm water.

Let sit for 5-10 minutes or until bubbles form and mixture starts to foam. This tells you that the yeast is alive and kicking. 

Pour in the salt, oil, and half the flour and mix.

Once the flour is totally incorporated, start adding flour bit by bit until you get the dough as you want it. It should be slightly tacky and does not stick to your hands.

Once you reach this stage, knead for 6 minutes. Turn on a timer and walk away. The dough should be smooth and easy to work with after that. DO NOT stop before 6 minutes.

Put the dough in a slightly greased bowl and cover with plastic, let rise for 1-2 hours.



Cook’s Notes: I did not have any bread flour on hand and  used regular self rising flour last night and it came out great! Also, when she talks about using a stand mixer and kneading, I turn mine on high and let it knead for 6 minutes. I always keep an eye on it because my stand mixer does ‘walk’ on my counters. You can also do this by hand, but it takes more work.


Pizza Sauce


15 ounce can of crushed tomatoes

To this I add garlic powder, Italian seasonings, oregano, salt and pepper to taste.


Cook’s Notes: You can put what ever you want in with the crushed tomatoes to your own taste. That is why there are no amounts. I just throw stuff in and do not measure it at all. I also do not cook this. I put it on the dough and when the pizza cooks so does the sauce. I like crushed tomatoes because there are some pieces of tomato you can also use tomato sauce if you do not like the pieces of tomato.


Cast Iron Pizza

Not really sure where I got the recipe for the cast iron pizza. So, here is the recipe as it is written.

Cast Iron Pizza


I batch of pizza dough and one batch of pizza sauce

8 ounces of mozzarella

pizza toppings as desired


Preheat oven to 450 degrees

If you want more of a hand tossed crust style, lightly coat the cast iron skillet with olive oil. If not place the cast iron skillet into the oven for 30 minutes to preheat.

Divide the pizza dough into 2 equal halves. Spread the dough out to roughly the size of your cast iron skillet.

If using the skillet pre heated be careful when placing the dough into the skillet as it will be hot! Spread out in the pan making a lip around the edge.

Smear about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of sauce on the dough.

Top with cheese and toppings of your choice. Bake for 20-25 minutes depending on your oven.

Repeat with the other piece of dough.

Cook’s Notes: I did not preheat the skillet, I used it like the hand tossed style and it was great! I know it seems like a lot in this recipe, but it is really not that difficult.  


Parmesan Pork Chops

*** I tend to bread my pork chops because I find that they will dry out in the oven. This breading is rather light so you are not adding a lot of calories. We like it a lot and will use it for other things like chicken. This is a simple yet easy recipe and you can change out the spices for ones that you like***


4 boneless pork chops

1 TBS olive oil

1 cup Parmesan cheese

1 cup seasoned bread crumbs

1 tsp. pepper

1 tsp. garlic powder


on a plate combine the last 4 ingredients

Rub the pork chops with olive oil then coat each one in the cheese mixture. Press the mixture over the pork chops to make sure they are covered well.

Line a pan with foil and spray with cooking spray

Place the chops on the pan and bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes.


Cook’s Notes: I did not have boneless chops. When I went shopping they were more expensive than the bone in chops. So I used them. It came out perfectly fine with the bone in chops. You may have to cook them slightly longer if you are using the bone in chops like I did.

Home Made Tomato Soup

**** My friend Daniel Mancini posted this totally amazing tomato soup recipe on QVC and you can find the original recipe here. He is also the man behind the company Mama Mancinis and you can find them on FB  and their website. I made this last night and I have to say that  honestly that was the best tomato soup ever! Now, it will not exactly taste like what you are used to with the canned stuff, but it is so much better for you and so healthy! ****


1 28 oz can of whole Italian plum tomatoes

4 TBS unsalted butter

4 cups of chicken stock

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. fresh black pepper

1/4 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup minced onion

2 minced garlic cloves

1/4 tsp. dry oregano

1/4 tsp. dry thyme

1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley


in a 4 quart sauce pan or soup pot on a medium heat, add the butter, onion, garlic, salt, pepper and sauté on low heat for 10 minutes or until the onion becomes translucent.

Add the tomatoes and all the juice, oregano, thyme, and put on medium heat.

Bring this to a boil, cover and lower the heat to a simmer for 15 minutes.

Add the stock, bring to a boil, lower the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Remove from heat and allow to come to room temperature

Once it is at room temperature, add the soup to a blender and puree it.

Put the soup back into the pot and bring to a boil, turn off the heat and stir in the heavy cream and parsley.



Cook’s notes: I did not use the onion as I am allergic but I did add a tablespoon of onion powder into the soup. I also did not use the parsley because mainly, I did not have any on hand. I did add another splash of cream as well. I made grilled cheese sandwiches on Italian bread to complete the meal and it was so good! My 2 year old loves the soup and you do have enough to take it to work the next day for lunch!

Bow-Tie Chicken Alfredo

** This is another recipe I love from The Pioneer Woman’s newest cookbook, Dinnertime. I love this cookbook because it is solely dinner recipes. It is quick and easy as well. If  you have this cookbook this recipe can be found under Comfort Food.**


2 chicken breasts, boneless, skinless

1 TBS Italian seasoning

1 TBS butter

1 TBS olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup chicken broth, divided into 1/2 cups

1/2 cup half and half

1/4 cup heavy cream

1 cup parmesan cheese, grated

12 ounces bow tie pasta, cooked to al dente

2 TBS minced parsley

kosher salt and black pepper to taste


Slice chicken into strips and season with the Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper to taste.

Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until it is deep golden brown on both sides and done in the middle, 6-7 minutes.

Remove chicken to plate and set aside.

Add the garlic to the pan and quickly stir it around, letting it cook and release it’s flavors for 30 seconds.

Then add the chicken broth, scrape the bottom of the pan, let the liquid bubble up and reduce by half, 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the half and half and cream

Let the sauce heat up and thicken for a few minutes.

When the sauce has thickened remove it from the heat. Add the Parmesan cheese to the pan and then the pasta. Then add the chicken.

Toss it around, taste, add more salt and pepper if needed. Top with parsley and more Parmesan cheese.

Cook’s Notes:

I have made this and the recipe is spot on. My only mistake was not letting the chicken  broth reduce enough before adding the cream and half and half. This is a great recipe and quick and easy, perfect for a week night dinner.