Salsa Mac and Cheese with PACE salsa

No pics today, as this recipe was devoured by two hungry men…LOL. I was actually searching for a recipe about dressing up that CANADIAN KD – better known as Kraft Macaroni and Cheese! Thankful that I found this one on the Pace Salsa website! It comes together very quickly once you have prepared the pasta. It should actually feed four people. I skipped the tortilla chips since I was already carb heavy with the macaroni.

Pace* Salsa Mac and Cheese

Ingredients

  • 1/2-pound boneless beef sirloin steak, cut into thin strips
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium green pepper, cut into 2-inch-long strips (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 3 cups Pace® Chunky Salsa
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fajita seasoning
  • 2 cups water
  • 12 ounces (about 3 cups) uncooked elbow macaroni or cavatelli pasta
  • 1/2 cup coarsely crushed tortilla chips
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese (about 6 ounces)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Step 1

Heat the oven to 350°F. While the oven is heating, season the beef with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a 12-inch ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the beef and cook until well browned and cooked through. Remove the beef to a plate.

Step 2

Add the green pepper to the skillet and cook for 3 minutes or until tender-crisp. Remove the green pepper to the plate with the beef.

Step 3

Heat the salsa, fajita seasoning and water in the skillet to a boil. Stir in the elbows (press the elbows down to submerge in the salsa mixture). Reduce the heat to medium. Cook for 8 minutes or until the macaroni is tender, stirring occasionally. Return the beef and green pepper to the skillet with the macaroni and cook until the mixture is hot. Season to taste. Sprinkle with the crushed tortilla chips and cheese.

Step 4

Bake for 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Sprinkle with the cilantro just before serving, if desired.

Spinach Casserole

This would seem to be your normal quiche, although there is no crust! It is actually a KISS recipe (Keep It Simple Stupid) and can easily made by a child with some parental supervision. It is pictured here with a little Pace Medium Salsa on top prior to serving. And yes, you could serve it for breakfast!!

Spinach Casserole

Ingredients

  • 3 cups fresh spinach OR 20 ounces frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, cut into small cubes
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 6 slices bacon, fried and crumbled
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Add all of the ingredients to a large mixing bowl and stir well to combine.

3. Spread mixture into an 8×8 baking dish and bake for 35-40 minutes or until the edges are golden and the center is set.

4. Serve immediately.

Notes

The original recipe from Taste of Home called for a full 8 ounces of cream cheese, but we find this to be extremely rich and more like a spinach dip.

Easy Chicken Enchiladas

I actually made this recipe several weeks ago, and although it tasted great, I was not all that happy with how it turned-out. Freezing the second half of the recipe turned out to really enhance it! It did not hurt to add more sauce to it the second time around! Go ahead and add the beans if you like them. My spouse does not, so I omitted them from the recipe. Rather than make a separate sauce, I opted for PACE Salsa MEDIUM. It simplified the recipe for me.

The photo below shows the second casserole, previously frozen, thawed and rebaked with generous dollops of sour cream when served! It certainly does not look great BUT the taste was awesome!

Easy Chicken Enchiladas

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into small bite sized pieces
  • 1/2 red onion diced
  • 4 ounce can of green chiles
  • 1 pack taco seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 1/2 cups red enchilada sauce OR 1 jar of PACE Medium Salsa
  • 8 large Mexican flour tortillas
  • 15-ounce refried beans OPTIONAL
  • 16 ounces shredded cheese sharp cheddar, Monterey jack, pepper jack.
  • diced onion, cilantro, sour cream for toppings.

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees then add two tablespoons of oil to a large skillet and heat over medium high heat.  Add the small chunks of chicken to the skillet and stirring often, cook until browned and no longer pink inside. 

Add in the taco seasoning, spices, diced onion, 1/2 a cup of Pace salsa and green chiles. Stir to combine and simmer for 2-3 minutes then remove from heat. 

Next, line up your Easy Chicken Enchiladas ingredients and grab a large 9×13 baking pan. Add a small amount of sauce at the bottom of the pan and spread out evenly.

To assemble the Easy Chicken Enchiladas, lay out a tortilla and spread a line of beans (OPTIONAL) down the middle of the tortilla along with a line of the chicken and some of the shredded cheese. Roll the tortilla and place in the baking pan. Repeat with the remaining ingredients and then top with more sauce and the remaining shredded cheese. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes. Remove and serve immediately.

Slow Cooker Sausage and Peppers

Normally, when I do sausage and peppers, it is in the oven. Since I had time this week I found a slow cooker/crockpot recipe on Pinterest for this method. Come to find out, I liked it much better without having to use the oven. The texture of the sausage was so very different and the peppers were great. Served this with a little side of steamed broccoli. Perfect dish!

FYI…the sausages I prefer are Obertal Argentinian Chorizos, but that is your choice.

Crockpot Sausage and Peppers

Ingredients

  • 1 pkg Italian sausages (5) My preference is Obertal Argentinian Chorizo
  • 1 red pepper, sliced
  • 1 green pepper, sliced
  • 1 large onion
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup chunky marinara sauce I substituted a small jar of PACE Medium Salsa
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2-3/4 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese

Instructions

1. Heat a skillet on medium heat and add a drizzle of olive oil to the pan.

2. Sear the Italian sausages 2-3 mins on each side until starting to brown. You aren’t trying to cook them all the way through, you’re just browning the outside a bit which always increases the flavor while slow cooking.

3. Lay the seared Italian sausages in the bottom of a slow cooker/crockpot.

4. Add the uncooked sliced onions and peppers on top of the sausages.

5. Sprinkle the garlic salt, black pepper, and Italian seasoning over the top.

6. Spread the marinara sauce or PACE salsa over the onion and pepper mixture.

7. Cook the crock pot sausage and peppers recipe on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-7 hours until the peppers are soft and the Italian sausage is cook through. FYI…mine was done at 4 hours on low!

8. The crockpot Italian sausage and peppers are seriously SO delicious as is, but to take it up a notch, take the sausage and peppers out of the slow cooker and spread into a broiler-safe pan and follow the cheese steps in the optional section.

Optional – Add Cheese

1. Sprinkle 1/2 – 3/4 cups of your favorite shredded white cheese, like mozzarella, Monterey Jack, an Italian blend, or Colby Jack would all be great choices.

2. Broil the Italian sausage and peppers mix for 1-2 minutes 4″ from the heat source until the cheese is melted.