I’m on a quest to find ways to simplify my crazy life, especially the process of feeding my family. This recipe rocks because of its taste, simplicity AND the fact that can be easily packed into tomorrows lunchbox. I’m pulling out the muffin tins to put our main course into a neat little package with Mini Tex-Mex Chicken and Cheese Pies. Roasting a chicken is easy and it makes your home smell great but let’s be honest, it takes time. Time is something most of us just don’t have much of these days. So buying a fresh roasted chicken at your local market is just fine.
Now that I’m working full time I have to be much more creative about how to still be the Mom my kids have always had. Thank God my husband does all the laundry (Thanks Honey) or my kids would have nothing to wear. I remember when I was a child and my Mom worked full time and had an hour commute to the office. She came home everyday and prepared a hot meal for us. It didn’t dawn on me then how much effort and planning went into what she did. I may never be able to walk in her shoes. She is a special woman. I haven’t figured out yet if she is bionic or possesses the powers of merlin. I swear there have been times when she walked into a full, dirty laundry room and in the blink of an eye walked out leaving behind empty baskets and piles of neatly folded clothes. I truly admire her. She did not, however, possess the skill of cleaning up the dinner dishes, that was my job! That’s why I secretly giggle when my kids cry “why do I ALWAYS have to do the dishes.”
There are so many meals you can make with the meat of a simple roasted chicken. Today I’m sharing one that tastes great right out of the oven and also the next day as a hand held snack.
Mini Tex-Mex Chicken and Cheese Pies
- 1 (1.3 LB) rotisserie chicken, shredded (skin and bones discarded)
- 1 1/2 cups shredded pepper jack cheese
- 1 (3 oz) can diced green chiles (optional!)
- 1/4 cup chipotle ranch dressing 1/4 cup cilantro, plus more for garnish *
- 1 cup Bisquick™ Original baking mix
- 1 cup milk
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup salsa of your choice
note* If you are not a cilantro fan like several of the members of my family, you can substitute by using flat leaf parsley. It adds a fresh, bright element to the dish.
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- In a large bowl, combine the shredded chicken, cheese, green chiles (if using!), chipotle ranch and cilantro.
- Mix together with your hands until well combined.
- In another smaller bowl, whisk together the Bisquick™, milk and eggs.
- Lightly coat a 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray.
- Pour a Tbsp of the egg mixture into each muffin cup.
- Then place about 2 Tbsp of the chicken mixture on top of the baking mixture.
- Then spoon over 1 more Tbsp of the baking mixture on top of the chicken. (Continue for the remaining muffin cups.) Depending on the size of the chicken you use this recipe yields 12-18 muffins.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick is clean when inserted.
- Serve garnished with more cilantro and your favorite salsa!
As a bonus, I’m also sharing a quick and easy dessert. Well, in all honesty it takes 5 minutes to create but about 4 hours to freeze. So, it’s not that quick but with a little planning you can really surprise your family with this yummy treat. This week we celebrated my son Joe’s Birthday but why wait for a birthday, There’s always something to celebrate. It’s almost spring, that’s reason enough for me.
Ice Cream Layer Cake
- 1 pound cake (the pound cake at the store was much smaller than my loaf pan at home so I used two pound cakes and pieced the layers together.)
- 2 quarts of your favorite ice creams…we used cookies and cream and salted caramel
- 4 peanut butter cups roughly chopped
- 1 cup of assorted candies roughly chopped. We used Kit Kat bars, Butterfingers and Rolo’s
- One Chocolate shell ice cream sauce. The kind that hardens. Caramel or chocolate sauce for serving.
- Slice the pound cake horizontally into 3 pieces.
- Place the first slice in the bottom of a loaf pan lined with plastic wrap. Cover the cake with ice cream followed by three quarters of the chopped peanut butter cups.
- Add a second layer of cake, cover with ice cream again and top with three quarters of the assorted chopped candies.
- Place the last layer of cake on top, followed by more ice cream. Cover with the remaining candies then coat with the chocolate shell.
- Allow a minute for the shell to set. Fold over the plastic wrap and place into the freezer until frozen, about 4 hours.