How to Actually Eat What You Buy!

How to Actually Eat What You Buy!

One thing I struggle with is eating what I buy. I don’t know how, but I would always end up opening Uber Eats, hitting up a drive through, or picking up take out even though I have TONS of food in my fridge. I was in denial until one day, I sat down with my financial planner and faced the reality; I was spending HUNDREDS of dollars on food a month and, trust me, as a teacher, I could not afford to maintain that lifestyle.

So, I went on a mission to find out how to actually consume what I bought from the grocers. Now, I’m not perfect, and sometimes things still go to waste, but I will say since I’ve been more intentional about my food habits, I have improved. Improved enough to think my tips might be of service to you if your struggling like I was. I hope they aid you in your quest to make Everydaylicious!

Planning is Key!

  • Grocery shop in meals: When I planned out my meals before I went to the grocery store, it made me be more intentional with what bought. When I am staring at my fridge, I know exactly why I decided to buy an item which meant that I was far more likely to actually use it.
  • Be honest about your cravings: When I was honest about what I’m actually craving, then I could plan accordingly and keep those items, or an alternative, on hand. For example: I knew that I randomly craved sweets, so, instead of running out to get ice cream or a cookie, I made sure to keep an alternative in my home. I keep Larabars, bananas with chocolate, and agave to top rice cakes! Sometimes, I do plan to splurge, and I’ll buy Mochi ice cream, or cookies in cream. Not only does it keep me away from ordering or eating out, I also make sure that my splurge doesn’t fall into a junk food spiral because it was planned as a treat!
  • Plan to ‘treat yo’ self’: One of the motives that would drive me away from my pantry and to the delivery apps was that little voice in the back of my head saying, “I deserve to treat myself! I work hard! YOLO” (Yes, that reference is old, but I love Drake lol) So, it hit me one day that I should plan to buy items from the grocery store that would satisfy that impulse. Some of my “treat yo’ self” items include mochi ice cream (yes, I love mochi haha), special cheeses to make an at home charcuterie board, hot chocolate (because I am a child), and sparkling water (because I am also an adult).
  • HAVE FUN!: My last planning tip is to have fun! If I planned something new and exciting to cook, then I was far more likely to cook it because I was excited about eating the food. Whether I planned an old favorite or a new experiment, being excited about my meal made me more likely to cook and enjoy it!

Make it Visible

  • Post a list on the fridge: I love to post a list of all of my meals, snacks, and sweets on the fridge, so I don’t forget what I bought and when I feel like “I don’t have anything to eat” I can remind myself that that’s a lie! It’s simple, but it works!
  • Organize your fridge and pantry: Two years ago, I read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo. Yes, I read the actual book after binge watching her show Tidying Up on Netflix. Yes, I read an entire book on cleaning lol. What I learned is that if you can see your items, you are more likely to use them. So, I organized my spice racks, my pantry, and my fidge in a way that I could see and know how much of what I have. While “tidying up” I discovered that I had duplicates of SO MANY ITEMS. I didn’t need to buy canned tomatoes for weeks, and I had enough garlic salt to last me a year!

Practice Grace

  • One phrase that I like to use is, “No mistakes, only gifts.” I first heard this in Judy Holler’s book Fear is My Homeboy. (It is an impactful read, and I would definitely recommend you pick up a copy or download the audio book.) This saying is a reminder that mistakes are just data. This also applies to the kitchen! If you end up not eating what you bought and still running to take out, take a step back, evaluate what happened, and try again with a new gameplan. I am confident that eventually, you will find a system and a combination that works for you!

Thank you!

Again, thank you so much for reading. It fills me with deep joy and gratitude that people take the time to read my writing. I hope that this was encouraging and added value to your lives. As always, don’t forget to make Everydaylicious.

Slow Cooker “Gumbo”

Slow Cooker “Gumbo”

Okay, so I am going to start this post with the caveat that this is not a true gumbo. Being from the American south, with family roots in Louisiana, I cannot, in good conscience, call this a gumbo because I did not start with a traditional rue. I will, however, say that it was gumbo inspired, with ingredients and flavor profiles pulled from the delicious dish!

I decided to make this meal because it is a simple way to bring some comfort food to your weeknight. With the crock pot, it is truly a dump it and forget it until it is time to enjoy! Here is the recipe!

Recipe

Ingredients and Equipment

  • Chicken Thighs 4
  • Shrimp 1 bag frozen uncooked
  • Okra 12 oz cut and frozen
  • Diced Sundried Tomatoes 1 Jar
  • Tomato Sauce 1 can 15 oz
  • Diced Tomatoes 1 can 14.5 oz
  • Minced Garlic 2 tbs
  • Paprika 1/2 tsp
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Cayenne adjust depending on spice tolerance
  • Oregano 1 tsp
  • Thyme 1 tsp
  • Bay Leaves 3

  • Slow Cooker

Step 1: Put Everything in the Slow Cooker

Put everything in the slow cooker EXCEPT the shrimp! The only thing that matters is that you put the chicken in first and pile everything on the top. Sausage is also an option if you would like to add it.

Step 2: Cook

Turn the slow cooker on low and cook for 6 hours. After 6 hours, put the shrimp in and cook for another 30 minutes. Your chicken’s internal temperature should be 165 degrees Fahrenheit (73.9 degrees Celsius).

Step 3: Enjoy

Yes, I promise, it is that easy! Now you get to eat it! I like to put mine over rice!

Thank you!!

As usual, I would like to extend my thanks! I feel truly honored that you invited me into your kitchen and your life! Don’t forget to love yourself and make Everydaylicious!

Lobster Grilled Cheese

Lobster Grilled Cheese

My goal when eating is to not require a recovery after each meal. For me, that means my usual diet doesn’t include dairy or bread, but the occasional indulgence is a must! This is why, on Valentine’s day, I decided to splurge and make this lobster grilled cheese. It was AMAZING. My fiancé took one bite and said, “I knew you loved me.” That is when I knew I had to share it with you. Whether your occasion is a birthday, anniversary, or just making it through the day (because sometimes it be like that). Here is the perfect recipe for celebrating and making dinner extra special!

Recipe

Ingredients and Equipment

  • Lobster tails (the amount varies on size of both the lobster and portion of grilled cheese)
  • Sour dough bread or a baguette
  • Gruyere cheese
  • Gouda Cheese
  • Salted butter
  • Thyme
  • Oregano
  • Minced Garlic
  • Salt

Making the Grilled Cheese

Step 1: Boil the Lobster

  • Add water to a medium/ large pot. The amount of water and size of the pot will depend on the size and amount of your lobster tails. You want to make sure that the water completely covers the lobster.
  • Salt the water and bring it to a boil.
  • Once boiling, add your lobster tail(s)
  • You will know that the lobster tail is done when the internal temperature is between 135-140 degrees Fahrenheit (57-60 degrees Celsius). The lobster will turn red as a hint!
  • Take the lobster out and let it cool!

Step 2: Assemble the Sandwich

  • Remove the lobster meat by cutting down the middle of the lobster tail with kitchen sheers. Roughly chop the lobster meat do your desired size. I like mine to be thiccc!
  • Place the lobster meat, gruyere cheese, and gouda cheese between two slices of bread. I used Trader Joe’s baguette, but you can also use any sour dough bread you please.

Step 3: Grill the grilled cheese!

  • Option 1
    • in a small bowl or ramekin, soften a couple table spoons of butter (the amount of butter does not need to be exact).
    • Next combine the softened butter with thyme, oregano, and minced garlic.
    • Then, spread the now garlic butter on each side of your sandwich.
    • Finally, Place the sandwich in a skillet on low-medium heat and cook until the bread has browned and cheese is melty goodness!
  • Option 2
    • Melt a couple of table spoons of butter in a medium saucepan on low heat.
    • Add thyme, oregano, and minced garlic to the skillet. Wait to add the minced garlic until the last possible second. Garlic will burn easily!
    • Finally, Place the sandwich in a skillet on low-medium heat and cook until the bread has browned and cheese is melty goodness!

Thank you!

There you go! A decadent, yet approachable, fancy pants celebration meal! I absolutely loved making and eating this dish. It helped to make my Valentine’s day special and I hope it can bring something special to your next celebration, even if that celebration is simply being alive because you are a gift and worth celebrating!


Latest from the Blog

How to Actually Eat What You Buy!

One thing I struggle with is eating what I buy. I don’t know how, but I would always end up opening Uber Eats, hitting up a drive through, or picking up take out even though I have TONS of food in my fridge. I was in denial until one day, I sat down with my […]

Slow Cooker “Gumbo”

I am going to start this post with the caveat that this is not a true gumbo. However, it is delicious and gumbo inspried! I decided to make this meal because it is a simple way to bring some comfort food to your weeknight. With the crock pot, it is truly a dump it and forget it until it is time to enjoy! Here is the recipe!

Eating Well in a Hurry!

Regardless of how busy you are, prioritizing your health is a nonnegotiable. Not only can you not pour from and empty cup, but you also can’t fill a broken one. Even though planning is key, I learned early on that meal prepping every week is not realistic or sustainable for me. If you are like me, spending countless hours every Sunday to cook and pack food for the week was draining; I missed having my Sundays to myself; I got tired of eating the same meal halfway through the week; finally, if I didn’t meal prep, I was screwed and off to the closest fast-food restaurant I went.
For all of these reasons, I decided to find a better way. Here are my quick tips and favorite go-to’s for when I am short on time but want to eat well!

Garlic Bacon Brussels Sprouts

Garlic Bacon Brussels Sprouts

This is a decadent way for you to prepare your brussels sprouts. A perfect addition to any meal to make it feel special and fancy pantsy! These were inspired by the brussels sprouts I got at Ruth’s Chris Steak House. I wanted to bring that luxury to my dinner table, and I think that I succeeded! Here is the recipe, so you can bring some deliciousness to yours!

Recipe

Ingredients and Equipment

  • Brussels Sprouts (I used 1 16 oz bag from Walmart)
  • 1 lemon
  • Butter 1 stick (salted or unsalted)
  • Olive oil
  • Minced Garlic 2 tbs
  • Bacon 4 strips
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • Garlic powder to taste (optional)
  • Baking pan
  • Skillet
  • Cast Iron Skillet

Making the Brussels Sprouts

Step 1: Bake the Brussels Sprouts

  • First, preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit..
  • While the oven is heating, cut each brussels sprout in half, and spread them out on a metal baking sheet. Next, drizzle olive oil onto the brussels sprouts and make sure they are evenly coated. Then season the brussels sprouts with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. The garlic power is optional. I like garlic an awful lot, so the extra seasoning is my jam!
  • After seasoning, place in the oven for about 15 minutes. They do not have to be cooked all the way through because we are going to finish them off in the skillet!

Step 2: Create the Sauce

  • In a regular skillet, cook 4 slices of bacon until crispy then set them aside on a paper towel to drain. I used 4 slices, but if you would like more bacon in your brussel sprouts, you can adjust it to your desired bacon level. I mean, who doesn’t like more bacon?
  • In a separate cast iron skillet, melt butter, on low heat, until the bottom of the skillet is evenly covered. The amount of butter you use will depend on the width and depth of your skillet. I used about half a stick.
  • Once your butter is melted, add 2 tbs of minced garlic

Step 3: Combine

  • By now, your brussels sprouts should be ready to come out of the oven. Place them into your cast iron skillet.
  • Chop the bacon into small pieces and add them to the skillet. You can use a knife, but I tore off the pieces with my hands!
  • Next, cover and cook on low-medium heat until the brussel sprouts soften and begin to brown! (tip, if your butter starts to smoke, you have the heat too high. Also, you can always add more butter to the pan while cooking to make sure your mixture doesn’t burn.)
  • Lastly, squeeze lemon juice onto the brussels sprouts at the last minute before taking the brussels sprouts out of the pan. This is very important! The acidity brings brightness to the rich buttery flavor. I used about half a lemon, but it is really to taste!

Thank you!

And there you go! A delicious and easy way to cook brussels sprouts. I paired my brussels sprouts with lamb chops and mashed potatoes for a delicious Christmas dinner! As usual, thank you so much for reading. It means so much to me that people take the time to read and try my recipes. Don’t forget to make Everydaylicious!

Lemon Pepper Chicken

Lemon Pepper Chicken

If you want to dress something up, throw a lemon butter sauce on it and taste the magic! My lemon butter chicken is the best weeknight meal because it is easy and requires few ingredients, but it doesn’t cheat you on taste!

Ingredients and Equipment

  • butter 1 stick
  • minced garlic 2 tbsp
  • lemon juice 1 cup
  • thyme 1/2 tsp
  • oregno1/2 tsp
  • salt to taste
  • pepper 1/2 tsp
  • chicken breast fillets (or normal chicken breast)

  • 2 Skillets
  • A spatula

Recipe

Step 1: Create the Sauce

In a skillet, on low, melt 1 stick of butter. After the butter has melted completely, add 1/2 of a grilled onion to the skillet and cook on low until the union is translucent. Next, add 1/2 tsp of thyme, 1/2 tsp of oregano, 1/2 tsp of pepper, 2tbs of minced garlic, and 1 cup of lemon juice to the melted butter. Stir, and cook on low until the sauce has thickened and the onions begin to brown. You can turn the heat up to medium but be careful not to burn the butter. If you start to see smoke, turn the heat down.

Step 2: Brown the Chicken

Season you chicken as desired. I like to put salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste. Heat of 1 tbs of olive oil in a separate skillet and add the chicken breast. Cook thoroughly until there is no pink throughout the breast and it begins to brown. You always want to cook chicken well done to avoid food poisoning!

Step 3: Combine Chicken and (Optional)

If you want your chicken to take on some extra flavor, add your chicken to the lemon sauce and heat for 1-2 minutes for the sauce to begin to work its way into the chicken! Pair it with vegetables, potatoes, or rice. The possibilities are endless!


Thank You!

Thank you so much for reading! Subscribe to get email notifications, so you don’t miss a recipe, and don’t forget to make Everydaylicious!

No Churn Human and Dog Ice Cream

No Churn Human and Dog Ice Cream

I was born and raised in central Texas, and if you ask any Texan what they think of when they hear the word summer, you will probably get an answer that involves streaks of 100+ degree days and trying to beat the heat! Some years when the heat got unbearable, my friends and family would venture somewhere else. Another state further up north, or out of the country all together! Since we couldn’t travel this year, I have been making dishes that remind me of my time away to bring some fun to my quarantine. This time, I was inspired by my trip to Ireland, so I decided to bring my favorite adult beverage and my favorite childhood snacks together to help cool down the hot days! I created a Jameson and coffee infused ice cream with Snickers bites for a crunch! I also wanted my golden retriever, Benjamin, to join in on the fun, so I made a companion ice cream for him. It was amazing kicking back and enjoying this treat with my best friend. Here is the recipe and remember to make everydaylicious!


Recipe

Ingredients and Equiptment

Human Ice Cream
  • heavy cream 2 cups
  • sweet and condensed milk 1 can (14 ounces)
  • whisky 1/4 cup
  • caramel coffee creamer 1/4 cup
  • espresso powder or fine instant coffee (I used two individually wrapped single serving packets of Cefe Bustelo, but you can measure out a couple of tablespoons to taste of any brand you want)
  • snickers bar 1 kings sized
Dog Ice cream
  • plain Greek yogurt
  • carrots
  • peanut butter (you can really add any treats that your dog likes! Carrots and peanut butter are just my dog’s favorite!)
Equiptment
  • whisk, hand mixer, or standing mixer
  • knife
  • container with a lid or cling wrap

Making the Human Ice Cream

Step 1: Make the ice cream base

Measure two cups of heavy whipping cream into a bowl or your standing mixer with a whisk attachment. Beat on high until stiff peaks (That is when you heavy cream has become whipped cream.) Next, on a medium speed, mix in one 14 ounce can of sweet and condensed milk until fully incorporated.

Step 2: Add the fixin’s

This is where you can add anything that you want to the base, but if you would like to follow my recipe, this is what I added! Mix in 1/4 cup of whiskey (I used Jameson, because it is my favorite and reminds me of a simpler time when I could travel!) 2 packets of instant espresso coffee, 1/4 cup of caramel coffee creamer, and 1 king sized snicker’s bar cut into chunks.

Step 3: Freeze!

After you have mixed in all of your ingredients, transfer the mixture to a container with an air-tight lid. You can also use a simple freezer friendly bowl and cover it with shrink wrap! Pop it in the freezer and in 4 hours, your ice cream will be ready to go!


Making the Dog Icecream

Step 1: Mix

For the dog ice cream, all you have to do is mix Greek yogurt with any treats your dog loves. I used 3 cups of Greek yogurt, cut up about 5 baby carrots, melted about 1/4 cup of peanut butter, and mixed all of it together in a bowl. Its that easy!

Step 2: Freeze

Transfer the ingredients to the freezer in a dog safe tupperwear (I probably wouldn’t use glass). I put it into small containers so that they are single serve. It is convenient just to pop it out the freezer and give it to Benjamin! This also takes about 4 hours to set!


Thank you!

I hope you and your furry friend enjoy these recipes! Let me know if you try it and remember to make everydaylicious!

Making Macarons

Making Macarons

One of my all-time favorite memories is going to Paris for the first time with my best friend. For years, we swooned when Carrie Bradshaw was wondered around Paris shoe shoping and dining in fashionable restaurants. As we watched we fantasized about one day galivanting down those same streets. This was finally our time to go to our dream city and what better way to spend our time than EATING our way through Paris. We ate nonstop for a week, and through the food-drunken haze of French cuisine, one memory cuts through all of them, and that was going to Ladurée for the first time! The store was a pastel dream, and the macarons were perfect, soft, fluffy, and a beautiful balance of flavors.


This year, I was not able to go abroad, so I decided to bring Paris to me and thus began my journey to the perfect macaron! It took many tries, falling down several “YouTube macaron rabbit holes”, and a lot of courage to finally get the perfect cookie. I am here to encourage you on your journey by sharing mine! Maybe watching me face my fears can help you with yours ❤ Here’s the recipe, and don’t forget to make every-daylicious!

Recipe

Ingredients and equiptment

For the cookies
  • white sugar 100g
  • powdered sugar 130g
  • almond flour 140g
  • egg whites 100g
  • salt 1/4 tspn
  • vanilla extract (or extract of your choice) 1/4 tspn
  • cream of tartar 1/4 tspn
  • gel food coloring (optional)

For the icing

  • butter 2 sticks (1 cup)
  • powdered sugar 2 cups
  • vanilla extract 1/4 tspn (or any flavor you want! You can even juice some berries and use that!)
  • milk 1 tbs
  • Food coloring (optional)

Equiptment

  • Mixer (it can be a hand mixer, but it will be an arm workout!)
  • food processor
  • sieve
  • scale (I tried to skip the scale and use a measuring cup. It didn’t work for me.)
  • spatula
  • bowl
  • flat baking sheet
  • macaron mat (you can use parchment paper but it will be MUCH harder to get them perfect!)
  • piping bag
  • round piping tip

Now Let’s do This: Making the Cookies!

Step 1: Dry ingredients

Add 140g of almond flour and 130 grams of powdered sugar to the food processor and pulse it several times. You want it to be really fine, but be careful because if you pulse it too long, you will make almond butter! Run this mixture through a sieve, discarding the big almond bits caught in the sieve. Do not force the bits through. Repeat this twice more (I tried to skip this, but I got cracks and an uneven texture.) Set aside the mixture for later.

Step 2: The Meringue!

Add 100g of ROOM TEMPERATURE egg whites to your mixer. If you do not use room temperature eggs, your meringue will not whip! With the whisk attachment, begin to whip your egg whites on a medium speed until it begins to froth. Then add 1/4 tspn of cream of tartar and 1/4 tspn of salt. Next, continue to whisk the mixture on high until it is white. Once white, drizzle in the 100 grams of white sugar while the mixer is still running. Do this very slowly as to not pop the air bubbles and deflate your meringue! After the sugar is fully incorporated, continue to whip on high until you see a soft peak (That is when your meringue forms a peak, but it isn’t stiff enough to stand on its own. See picture to the right.

Once you have reached the soft peak stage, now is time to start adding your flavoring and coloring. You can use any extract of your choice. I used vanilla in mine! For coloring, make sure you use gel food coloring. Liquid coloring can change the consistency of your meringue.

Once you have added your flavor and color, whip your mixture on high until you get hard peaks. That is when your batter can stand on its own, and you can turn your bowl upside down without anything falling out!

Step 3: Macoronage (The fancy name for mixing the batter!)

Now that we have both part of our mixtures ready, it is time combine them! Transfer the meringue to a mixing bowl and grab your spatula. Sprinkle 1/3 cup of the almond flour powdered sugar mix from step one onto your meringue. FOLD the dry ingredients into the meringue until fully incorporated. Then add in the rest of the batter and begin to fold the mixture. This is where you need to take your time and pay close attention. You should mix until the consistency is like flowing lava. If you are like me and have never seen lava before, you can use the figure 8 test. Once you can drip the batter off your spatula and create a figure 8 without your batter breaking, it is ready. DO NOT MIX ANYMORE! If you under mix your mixture you can get cracks or hollow cookies. If you over mix, you will not get the lovely macaron feet (the bubbles at the bottom of the cookie that characterize a macaron). It is easier to judge consistency after seeing it, so I included a video bellow. Once the mixture is ready, transfer your batter to a piping bag with a round piping tip.

Figure 8 test

Step 4: Pipe, Drop, and Wait

On top of your flat baking sheet, place your macaron mat (or parchment paper.) With your tip straight up and down, pipe an oval filling the smaller circle of the template (if you are using parchment paper, that is about 1.5 inches across). After you have piped all your macarons, it is time to drop the tray (literally!). Pick up the tray and bang it on the counter a couple of times! Seriously, don’t skip this step. This brings all the air bubbles from the bottom of the tray to the top, so they don’t crack your cookies. If you are feeling extra type A today, you can grab a toothpick and pop any of the smaller air bubbles you see. After you drop the tray, you must wait! Let the cookies rest until a skin forms on top and you can rub your finger over the top of your cookies without indenting them. This will help your cookies rise vertically, and get those signature feet we were talking about earlier.

Once your cookies have formed a skin, preheat your oven to 320 degrees Fahrenheit (160 degrees Celsius). Bake your cookies for 13-15 minutes. Be sure that you only put in one tray at a time. Macarons are selfish and want their own space. They are the diva of cookies; they don’t share a dressing room hunty! Once fully baked, take them out of the oven, let them cool, and then transfer the cookies to a cooling rack.


Making the filling!

Now its time to work on the filling. Macarons are traditionally filled with all types of things. The possibility is endless. I favor a tart filling to balance out the sweetness of a macaron. My favorite is a Lemon curd, but for the purpose of this recipe, because we are focusing on perfecting the cookie, I am including the recipe to a simple American buttercream. You can always add raspberry sauce that has been ran through a sieve, or lemon juice in place of vanilla extract for a better contrast of flavor!

Step one: Cream the Butter

Put two sticks (1 cup) of room temperature butter into your mixer (you can also use a hand mixer). I have used both salted and unsalted butter, and it didn’t make much of a difference to me. Beat the butter on high until it turns lighter in color.

Step 2: Add Powdered Sugar

Pause the mixer and add int 1 cup of powdered sugar, beat until sugar is fully incorporated. (HINT: start on low so that the powdered sugar doesn’t explode all over your kitchen.) Pause the mixer again and add the second cup of powdered sugar. Whip until everything is fully incorporated and the batter is a pale white!

Step 3: Add in all the fixins!

Add in the 1/4 tspn of vanilla extract (Here is also where you can add juices, flavoring, sprinkles, or any other cool stuff you can come up with!). Add milk in 1tbs increments until you reach a silky consistency. And there you have it, buttercream! Add it to a piping bag to fill your cookies!


Assembly

Take one of your cookies, and pipe on your butter cream to the flat bottom of the cookie! You can have as much or as little icing as you like! Take another cookie and place it on top of the piped buttercream to create a sandwich! There you go, you have macarons.


Thank you!

Thank you so much for reading! I really loved facing my fears and bringing a little piece of French fabulousness to my everyday life. I especially loved sharing it with you. Please share if you try the recipe! Remember, persistence is key with these cookies, and remember to make everydaylicious!