Bytes to Bites

Korean Beef Bowl
April 9, 2017, 2:52 am
Filed under: Dinner, Weekday Meals


This looked like a pretty neat recipe when suggested in one of my cooking groups. Sounded like a quick and easy weekday recipe – with taste!


1/4 cup brown sugar, packed

1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce

2 tspns sesame oil

1/2 tsp crushed red-pepper flakes, or more to taste

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1 tbspn vegetable oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 lb ground beef

2 green onions, thinly sliced

1/4 tsp sesame seeds


1. In a small bowl, whisk together brown sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, red pepper flakes and ginger.

2. Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add ground beef and cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes, making sure to crumble the beef as it cooks; drain excess fat.

3. Stir in soy sauce mixture and green onions until well combined, allowing to simmer until heated through, about 2 minutes.

4. Serve on rice, garnished with green onion and sesame seeds, if desired.


This was pretty good! First of all, it wasn’t a total tank with the kids. The youngest ate a bit and claimed “yum” (then ate a hot dog). But, I think I could convince both to eat it again, which is always a miracle at our house. Good taste and I’d bet this sauce would be great in a stir fry as well…next time!

Our Home Rating? 4/5 bites



Garlic Parmesan Orzo
September 12, 2016, 3:25 am
Filed under: Dinner, Pasta, Side Dishes


I love orzo and am always looking for new recipes. This one isn’t the favorite of the three or so I have on my blog now, but it’s pretty good and adds some variety into the orzo recipe mix.


1 cup uncooked orzo

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

2 tbsp unsalted butter

2 cups spinach, finely chopped

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

2 tbspn milk

salt and pepper to taste.


1. Cook orzo, following the directions on the package.

2. In a large pan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add garlic, cooking for 4 minutes, or until tender. Turn off the heat and add the chopped spinach and cook for a minute, allowing to wilt.

3. Next add the orzo, milk, parmesan, salt and pepper. I choose to add the parmesan last to allow it to melt into the other, already mixed ingredients.


I rated it a 2 only because of my comments up front. Remember, this blog is recipes I want to keep. So, I 2 is pretty good. It was a bit bland compared to the other recipes I have, but really easy to make and next time I’d probably try adding mushrooms or veggies to the mix.

Our Home Rating? 2/5 bites


Chicken Meatballs
September 12, 2016, 3:17 am
Filed under: Dinner, Weekday Meals


My husband found this recipe online and boy, were they good! Recipe includes his modifications, but the original is linked at the bottom.


1 lb ground chicken

1 egg

1/2 cup parmesan cheese

1/2 cup breadcrumbs (we used panko)

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsps fresh oregano (or the equivalent dried)

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp paprika

2 tbspn olive oil


1. Place ground chicken, egg, parmesan cheese, garlic, oregano, paprika and salt in a medium bowl. Knead mixture together with hand till evenly combined. Roll in breadcrumbs (panko)

2. Form mixture into 1-inch balls.

3. In large non-stick skillet, warm olive oil over high heat.

4. Place meatballs in pan, up to 8 at a time, and cook until all sides are browned, approximately 3 minutes for each meatball. Remove with slotted spoon.



Our Home Rating? 4/5 bites


Chicken Gnocchi Soup (Olive Garden Style)
September 10, 2016, 3:18 am
Filed under: Dinner, Soups


My best friend introduced me to Olive Garden’s Chicken Gnocchi soup. Yum! One weekend, I had a bit of a craving so decided to find a good recipe. First attempt and it worked out pretty well! Caution, calories ahead.


4 tbspns butter

1tbspn extra virgin olive oil

1 cup finely diced onion

1/2 cup finely diced celery

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 litre half-and-half

2 (14-ounce) cans chicken broth (use 1 can for a thicker soup)

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp dried thyme

1/2 tsp dried parsley

1 cup finely shredded carrots

1 cup coarsely chopped fresh spinach leaves

1 cup diced cooked chicken (you can use a rotisserie chicken)

1 (16-ounce) package ready-to-use gnocchi


1. Melt the butter into the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally until the onion becomes translucent.

2. Whisk in the flour and cook for about 1 minute. Whisk in the half-and-half. Simmer until thickened.

3. Whisk in the chicken broth. Simmer until thickened again.

4. Stir in salt, thyme, parsley, carrots, spinach, chicken and gnocchi. Simmer until the soup is heated through. Before serving, season with additional salt, if necessary.


The gnocchi I bought said “ready in 2 minutes”. I wasn’t sure it was right, but it turned out fine. The recipe also has optional nutmeg (1/2 tsp), but my husband vetoed that idea and we didn’t use it.

Our Home Rating? 4/5 bites


Tuna & Vegetable Pasta Cheddar Melt
May 1, 2014, 1:47 am
Filed under: Dinner, Pasta, Weekday Meals | Tags: ,


A quick an easy Tuna Casserole meal from Campbell’s.


1/2 tbsp oil

1 1/2 cups small broccoli florets

1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms

1 clove garlic, minced

2 1/2 cups chicken broth

3 cups uncooked whole grain rotini

1 can Cream of Mushroom soup

1/2 cup milk

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

2 cans low sodium tuna in water, drained and flaked

1/2 cup shredded light cheddar cheese



1. Cook broccoli, mushrooms and garlic in heated oil in a large non-stick skillet at medium-high heat for 3 minutes, stirring often. Remove vegetables and set aside.

2. Add broth to skillet and heat to a boil. Add rotini, reduce heat and cook at gentle boil until tender – about 15 minutes – stirring often. Do not drain.

3. Stir in soup, milk and pepper. Gently stir in tuna and reserved vegetables. Heat just to a boil, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with cheese.



Pretty good! Nobody complained about it. I like that it cooked in one pot, didn’t need to bake and had some veggies in the recipe, rather than needing the side.

Our Home Rating? 3/5 bites


Cheese Bacon Chicken Casserole
March 24, 2014, 4:35 am
Filed under: Dinner, Pasta, Weekday Meals


This was a Pinterest recipe. It looked quick and easy, and lived up to it’s expectations!


4-5 boneless, skinless chicken breats

6 stripes of quality bacon – cooked and crumbled

2 – 10 oz cans of cream of chicken soup

2 cups shredded Monteray Jack cheese

16 oz dried spiral pasta

2 tsp garlic powder

salt and pepper to taste


1. Cook and crumble bacon. While bacon is cooking, cut chicken into bite-sized chunks. Set cooked bacon aside for later use. In the same pan, cook chicken in bacon drippings. Add garlic powder and salt and pepper to taste.

2. While chicken is cooking, prepare pasta according to the directions. Spray a 9×13 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Preheat oven to 400.

3. Drain pasta and return to pot. Add chicken, both cans of cream of chicken soup, 1 cup of Monteray Jack cheese. Stir to mix well. Pour into prepared baking dish.

4. Top with crumbled bacon. Top with remaining cup of Monteray Jack cheese.

5. Bake at 400 for about 20 minutes, just until cheese is melted and beginning to brown on top.


The recipe suggests a number of ways to change it up and different flavors – add a packet of ranch dressing mix, green chilies, a favorite vegetable.

I used one can cream of mushroom and one can cream of chicken, just because like the flavor better and also added fresh mushrooms. The mushrooms were added to the meat just before it finished to give them a quick saute before baking. I’d also consider mixing the bacon in with the pasta and sauce, as it had a tendency to clump on top of the dish amongst the cheese (easy pickings for a toddler….and husband!). But, very good!

Our Home Rating? 5/5 bites

Source: (via Pinterest)

Oven Baked Pork Chops with Rice
March 15, 2014, 1:56 am
Filed under: Dinner, Weekday Meals


So far, this is the easiest recipe I’ve found for this dish that I love.


1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 1/2 cups of ater

1 cup long grain rice

1/4 tsp pepper

4 pork chops

salt and pepper to taste


1. Mix first four ingredients together. Place in a casserole dish.

2. Add the pork, salt and peppering each side.

3. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 1/4 hour.

Our Home Rating? 3/5 bites

Source: Internet, forgot which site.