Spicy Chicken Tortilla Roll Ups

Let me just start by saying, these things are A-MAZING!  One of the tastiest appetizers I’ve had since discovering Buffalo Chicken Dip!  I made this for two holiday gatherings this week, everyone loved them and they were gone in a flash!

Here’s a link to the original recipe I found on Pinterest: Spicy Chicken Tortilla Roll-Ups.  These were super easy to make and I pretty much followed the recipe exactly.  When I made it a second time, I decided to add corn (the picture of this recipe is from the first time I made them and doesn’t have corn).  I’m thinking about adding black beans to the recipe the next time I make it (black beans might be a great substitute for chicken if you’d like to make a meat-free version).  Pepper Jack cheese might also be a great addition as well…this is such a simple and versatile recipe that I think there’s tons of variations possible.  No matter what, it’s fantastic and I will be making this recipe again and again!!

Here’s the recipe for Spicy Chicken Tortilla Roll-Ups: 

 

1.5 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast

1 can Ro-Tel diced tomatoes, drained

1 large container of softened cream cheese (13.5 oz size)-you could probably use light cream cheese if you’d like to lighten it up a bit; I don’t think you’d lose any flavor.

1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1 clove garlic, minced or grated

3 teaspoons chili powder, divided

2 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

Salt, to taste

1/4 cup chopped cilantro, about a small handful

6 scallions, white and green parts, chopped

About 3/4 cup canned corn, drained.  I used about 3/4 of the can of corn

6-8 large flour tortillas-I used spinach tortillas and jalapeno cheddar tortillas;  I think the jalapeno cheddar tasted best but having the different colored tortillas looked nice for presentation.  I would recommend using flavored tortillas if you can; I think plain tortillas would take away from the flavor and presentation.

Season the chicken breasts with salt, one teaspoon of cumin, and one teaspoon of chili powder.  Place the chicken in a skillet and add one cup of water.  Cover and cook on medium-high heat until cooked through; this took about 15-20 minutes.  Keep an eye on the chicken while it cooks; if the water cooksout of the pan you may need to add a little extra.

Once the chicken is cooked, remove it from the pan.  Allow the meat to cool until it is cool enough to handle, and shred it with two forks.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, drained Ro-Tel tomatoes, cheese, 2 teaspoons of chili powder, one teaspoon of cumin, garlic salt, cayenne pepper, garlic, cilantro, onion and corn and combine until mixed well.  Add the chicken to the cheese mixture and stir to combine.

Spread the filling out evenly among the center of the tortillas.  Be sure to spread a thin layer and leave the edges clean. Roll the tortillas up tightly, but do not fold the ends of the tortilla as you would when preparing a burrito, just leave the ends free.   Using a sharp knife, slice the tortillas into one inch slices and transfer to a serving platter.  You won’t be able to use the ends of the tortilla, so the best part is that you’ll have to just eat them!

If you are making these ahead of time, you can refrigerate the filling until you are ready to prepare the roll ups.  I wouldn’t prepare the roll ups the night before as this could make the tortillas dry or soften.  I made the filling the night before, and the roll ups an hour or so before serving.

 

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Cheddar Bacon Ale Dip

As you may already know, football is a national pasttime in my house.  And along with a day filled with couch dwelling and football comes lots of tasty game day recipes.  I found this Cheddar Bacon Ale Dip recipe from another blog I’ve recently discovered… Dinner, Dishes and Desserts  . There’s a ton of tasty recipes!

This dip has three of my favorite ingredients-cheese, beer, and bacon!  You just can’t go wrong if any one of these ingredients are in a recipe, let alone all three!! The original recipe for this dip also uses homemade pretzel bites, which look amazing!  But unfortunately, I’m too lazy  too busy 🙂 to make them from scratch so I just used store bought pretzel bites.

I used a heavier ale for this recipe, and I think it had a little too much beer flavor.  I know, how is that possible, right?! But I think if I make it again I’ll use a lighter flavored ale or maybe a little less beer (3/4 of the bottle instead of the full bottle).

Here’s what you’ll need for Cheddar Bacon Ale Dip:

6 slices of bacon, diced

1 12 ounce bottle ale style beer

2 teaspoons dijon mustard

4 ounces cream cheese cut into squares.  I used light cream cheese in this recipe, although I don’t think it mattered much, since I already have cheese and bacon in the recipe.  🙂

2 cups of sharp or extra sharp cheddar cheese

1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce

Salt and ground black pepper to taste

Directions: 

Heat a large pan over medium heat and cook the bacon until browned and crisp.  Remove the bacon from the pan with a slotted spoon and place on a paper towel-lined plate; leave a few tablespoons of bacon grease in the pan.

Add the flour to the bacon grease and whisk together for about 1 minute.  Whisk in the beer, and cook until it begins to thicken.  Whisk in the mustard and turn the heat to low.  Mix in the cream cheese and stir until melted.  Stir in the hot pepper sauce.  Add the cheddar cheese one handful at a time and stir until all the cheese is melted and the dip is hot.

Add a handful or two of bacon back to the dip and stir to combine.  Reserve a little of the bacon and sprinkle on top of the dip to use as garnish.  Serve warm with pretzel bites.  If you’re feeling ambitious, check out the homemade pretzel bites on Dinner, Dishes, and Dessert’s blog.

Enjoy!

Crock Pot Italian Beef Sandwiches

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…fall is approaching and magnificent Arizona weather is on its way.  My favorite holidays are just around the corner.  But more important, IT’S FOOTBALL SEASON!!!!  For the next 17 weeks, I have an excuse to flop on the couch on any given Sunday, because I’m watching football.

Football is an event in my house.  Sunday is all about football, from the moment we wake up, until the last game ends on Sunday night.  Even Chef PickyKid loves football; she watches the games with us, and can recite our favorite team’s fight song.  And of course,  any great event must include great food.  I like to make easy to prepare recipes on game day, so I don’t have to spend too much time in the kitchen and away from the games.  That’s why crock pot recipes are perfect for football Sunday!  And, as the weather gets cooler, crock pots are great for making comfort foods (yes, I realize “cooler” for us means 70 degrees, but after two years of living in the desert, 70 degrees feels downright chilly to me).

I got this recipe from a co-worker and added a few ingredients.  I prepared it before kickoff for the morning games, and it was ready by the time the afternoon games were over.  The meat is incredibly tender, very tasty and had just a little bit of spiciness.  Yummmm!!!

Here’s what you’ll need for Crock Pot Italian Beef Sandwiches:

3 Pounds of beef cross rib roast or chuck roast

About 2 tablespoons of olive oil, a few turns of a large pot or dutch oven.

1 Package of Good Seasons Italian Dressing Mix

2 1/2  Cups of beef broth or stock

1 Package of Au Jus gravy mix

2 teaspoons of Italian seasoning

Kosher Salt and Pepper

About 1/2 jar of Mezzetta Pepperoncinis, stems removed and sliced; I used a little more than half the jar, because I like it a little spicier.

1 Yellow onion, sliced

2 cloves garlic, divided

Ciabatta bread or sandwich rolls

Muenster cheese

Directions: 

Heat a large pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat with about 2 tablespoons of olive oil.

Rub the roast with one clove of garlic.  You won’t use the entire clove.  I usually cut the garlic in half, and rub the meat with the cut end of the garlic.  Make sure you rub the garlic over the entire roast.  Season the roast with kosher salt and pepper and brown it in the heated pot.  Be sure the pot is hot when you add the meat so it will get nice and browned on both sides.

While the meat is browning, add the broth, Italian dressing mix, Au Jus mix, Italian seasoning, Pepperoncinis, onion, and one clove of minced garlic to a crock pot.  When the meat is browned, add it to the crock pot and cook on low heat for at least 4-6 hours.

Remove the meat from the crock pot and shred it, but don’t throw away the liquid from the crock pot! The meat will be very tender, so this won’t take a lot of effort.  I just shred it with two forks.  Add the meat back to the crock pot and stir it into the liquid.

Serve the Italian Beef with Ciabatta bread or sandwich rolls and the Muenster cheese.  I was a little hesitant about using Muenster, as it isn’t one of my favorite cheeses, but trust me, it’s delicious!!

Happy Game Day!!