Tag Archives: ground turkey

Comfort Stew


Comfort food comes in many shapes, flavors and categories. Some are hot and some are cold. Comfort foods can also be seasonal. During the summer months my comfort foods are homemade potato salad, hand churned ice cream and my mom’s apple pie. In the cooler and down right cold months my comfort foods tend to be homemade soups and stews.


Just recently my hubby added a new dish I made to his comfort foods list. I think because it was a hearty stew packed with protein, veggies and fiber in the form of beans. Two kinds of beans to be exact. Beans are very rich in fiber as well as protein. I used black beans ( 15 g of fiber in 1 cup) and small white beans (19 g of fiber in 1 cup) to help fill my family up and to provide them with as much nutrition as possible in one dish. That is the great thing about stews. They can be a one pot dish which means easy clean up. At least my son thinks so because he usually does the dishes.


This Comfort Stew is even better the day after you make it. In my humble opinion, letting a dish sit overnight allows the seasonings and other ingredients to meld together and create an explosion of flavor. Because beans are so filling you will probably have leftovers so you can bet on enjoying another delicious bowl of Comfort Stew the next day. We sure did!




Comfort Stew

2 lbs ground turkey (93% lean)
2 14 oz cans small white beans with liquid
1 14 oz can black beans drained and rinsed
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes with jalapenos
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes with sauce
3 scallions sliced
1 onion diced
1 red pepper diced
1 small Napa cabbage shredded
½ green pepper diced
½ cup celery diced
½ cup water

1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp thyme
½ tsp basil

Brown ground turkey on medium high heat in a large pot. Season meat with salt, black pepper, onion powder and garlic powder. Add scallions, red and green peppers. Stir and reduce heat to medium. Cook for 3 -5 minutes. Add tomatoes, cabbage, water, beans and remaining seasonings. Stir and lower heat slightly. Simmer for 20 minutes.

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Open Faced Taco


An Open Faced Taco came to mind when I was looking for something to do with the extra tortillas I had on hand. I usually roll up the tortillas and make enchiladas but I had a taste for tacos not enchiladas. Instead of making a basic folded soft taco I imagined I could make an open faced taco similar to an open faced sandwich.


Just like an open faced sandwich my open faced taco can be eaten with either a knife and fork or with your fingers. Depending on the meal, I like the idea of eating with my fingers to catch all the wonderful bits and pieces that try to escape my mouth. Fried chicken, open faced tacos or pizza. All of them are finger licking good but for now open faced tacos are at the top of my list.



Open Faced Taco

4-6 tortillas
1 lb ground turkey or beef (optional: shredded chicken)
1 avocado sliced
1 14 oz can black beans drained
1 cup shredded lettuce
½ cup Mexican cheese or pepper jack cheese
½ cup fresh salsa
¼ cup red onion finely sliced
¼ cup taco sauce
¼ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup sliced black olives
½ cup water
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp Adobo
1 1 oz pkg taco seasoning
Heat vegetable oil in a non- stick frying pan on medium heat. Lightly brown tortillas on each side. Drain on paper towels. Pour out oil from the pan. Reduce heat to low melt butter. Add black beans, red onion, ½ tbsp salt and ½ cup water. Warm the beans for 3 – 5 minutes then gently mash the beans. Turn off heat.

Brown ground turkey on medium high heat in a large frying pan. Drain off any grease. Reduce heat to medium low. Add seasonings along with ½ cup water and taco seasoning. Stir to mix well. Let simmer for 15 minutes.

Assemble Taco:
Spread a spoonful of black beans on bottom of taco
Taco Sauce
Black Olives
Fresh Salsa

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Turkey Bean Burritos


Mmmm… I must say that I was pleasantly surprised at how good my Turkey Bean Burritos were on the first try. Like I have said on other occasions, keep it simple and stick to the basics. Since tortillas have become a staple in my pantry I thought I would try a few new recipes using tortillas. I had made chicken enchiladas and figured burritos would not be to much of a stretch to make.


Burritos like tacos are part of the “Tex-Mex” cuisine which is a culinary tradition of both Southwestern USA and Northern Mexico. Depending on if you are in the US or in Mexico the fillings you find in Burritos are different. In the US we tend to add a lot of ingredients to Burritos such as rice, beans, lettuce, cheese and avocado. In Mexico Burritos can be much simpler filled with only meat and refried beans.


I like the US version of Burritos so I fill mine up with several ingredients. Be careful not to over fill them or you will never be able to roll up the Burritos. Depending on your audience you can make every Burrito different based on their tastes.


However you decide to fill up your Burritos, have fun with it and make it your own.


Turkey Bean Burritos

6 – 8 tortillas
1 lb ground turkey
1 14 oz can refried beans
1 10 oz black beans rinsed
1 packet taco seasoning
1 jar taco sauce
½ cup water
½ cup fresh salsa
½ cup Mexican cheese or pepper jack cheese
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
½ tbsp salt
½ tbsp Adobo seasoning
½ tsp pepper
½ tsp onion powder
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp cumin

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Warm refried beans in a small sauce pan stirring occasionally. Brown turkey. Pour off excess fat. Season meat with salt, pepper, onion powder, cumin, cinnamon and worcestershire sauce. Add water and taco seasoning. Simmer for 10 minutes on medium heat.

Spread refried beans on a tortilla. Add 2 – 3 tbsp of meat on one end of the tortilla. Top with black beans, salsa and cheese. Fold sides of the tortilla towards the middle. Roll the end of the tortilla forward and tuck in the sides. Place on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle taco sauce over the tortilla and top with a sprinkle of cheese. Bake for 10 15 minutes until the cheese melts.

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Turkey Meatloaf with Swiss Chard

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When I think of comfort food a few things come to mind. Homemade soup, apple pie and meatloaf. I love all three and often crave the taste of meatloaf. Mostly because I am the only one in the family that can eat meatloaf anytime of the year.

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Growing up, my mom made a delicious meatloaf. Back then she used beef instead of turkey and made her own bread crumbs to add to the meatloaf. I take the easy way out and soak slices of bread in milk then add it to the meatloaf to keep it moist. Remember that no amount of gravy or tomato sauce will make a dry meatloaf taste good. So make sure you include extra moisture however you can and do not over cook the meatloaf.

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Another way to include moisture in meatloaf is to add veggies. For this meatloaf, I stuffed it with wilted Swiss chard and Gruyere cheese. Swiss chard is a new veggie for me. I had never used it before in a recipe but thought I would try it instead using my usual go to spinach filling. Like spinach, Swiss chard is easy to cook and can be used in a lot of dishes or made into a salad.

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The next time you have a craving for comfort food and decide on meatloaf, try kicking it up a notch and add something new.

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Turkey Meatloaf

2 lbs ground turkey
2 cloves of garlic chopped
1 small onion chopped
1 bunch Swiss chard sliced (remove stems)
2 slices bread
2 eggs beaten
2 tbsp ketchup
½ cup milk
½ tbsp salt
½ tbsp ground black pepper
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp parsley chopped
1 tbsp basil
½ tsp thyme
1 tsp cumin
1 cup shredded mozzarella or grated Gruyere cheese
3 strips of bacon

Substitute 1 lb of ground veal for 1 lb of ground turkey

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large skillet wilt Swiss chard and onions seasoned with a little salt. Remove from skillet and drain juice. Set aside to cool. Once cooled stir in the mozzarella cheese.

Place slices of bread in a bowl and pour milk over bread. Let the bread soak up all of the milk. This will help to keep the meatloaf moist while cooking.

In a large bowl add turkey, eggs, seasonings and bread soaked in milk. Mix well then place half of the turkey on a rimmed cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or foil sprayed with cooking spray. Form into the shape of a meatloaf. Create a gully in the center of the meatloaf. Place the Swiss chard and cheese mixture in the center of the meatloaf then top with remaining ground turkey. Reform if necessary. Lay the slices of bacon on top of the meatloaf. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour.





Chick Pea Stew

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On one of the many days I had run out of ideas for dinner my Chick Pea Stew recipe suddenly came to me. I had leftover taco meat in the refrigerator and a can of chick peas staring me in the face so I thought why not combine them! Some of the best recipes come from leftovers and a little imagination. This recipe is one of my family’s favorite meals so now whenever I make tacos for dinner I cook extra meat for a Chick Pea Stew dinner the next day. I think the seasoning tastes wonderful the next day.Chick Pea Stew 14_1

Even if you don’t have leftover taco meat in the frig you can pull this dish together in just a few minutes. In the fall and winter you can add potatoes or pasta to make the dish a little bit heartier. In the spring and summer keep it light with just the basics. If you are truly adventurous, try adding seasonal veggies to the stew to give it a new depth of flavors.

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Although I usually make this dish during the week when my time to cook is limited due to a hungry crowd, I really enjoy making it on weekends. On the weekends I can roast the onions and tomatoes instead of using canned tomatoes. Roasting veggies adds a wonderful smokiness to the stew that you can smell and taste. However you decide to make this delicious stew it will become your own and everyone will love it.

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Healthy, quick and easy works every time!

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Chick Pea Stew

1 lb ground turkey
1 pkg taco seasoning (hot or mild)
1 ½ bag fresh baby leaf spinach
1 12 oz can fire roasted tomatoes
1 large can chick peas rinsed
1 large onion diced
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 cups chicken stock
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp pepper
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp Adobo seasoning
½ tsp red pepper flakes

diced green peppers
diced potatoes
small pasta shells
roasted yellow squash
Seasonal Vegetables

Brown turkey and drain. In a large stock pot add meat, tomatoes, onions, chick peas,chicken stock and seasonings. Stir and let simmer 10 minutes. Add spinach and let wilt. Simmer on low for 30 minutes stirring occasionally.