Comfort Classic: Chicken & Dumplings

Today is the feast day of Sts. Perpetua and Felicity. If you haven’t read their story, I urge you to do so. You can find it here. As a mother, it is a tough story to read. They were both incredibly brave and held strong in their faith to the very end. Sts. Perpetua and Felicity, pray for us!

As we move along to the topic of this post, I should mention I am from Texas. Specifically, I am from East Texas, which may as well be an entirely independent state of its own. We eat a lot of comfort food predominately found in the south. I enjoy cooking this way on cold and rainy days, or when we are feeding a crowd. This dish reminds me of my family there. My Nana & Pawpaw love it, and my sister Morgan and I cooked it together several years ago. Chicken & Dumplings holds a special place in my heart, as you can tell.

Chicken & Dumplings

You will need:DSC_0441

  • 1 rotisserie chicken, pulled apart with the skin discarded
  • 2 cups of milk (we drink skim, so that is what I used. Any fat % will work)
  • 4 cups of chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
    • For the dumplings:
      • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
      • 1 cup of lukewarm water
      • 2 tbsp vegetable or canola oil
      • 1 tbsp baking powder
      • 1 1/2 tsp salt

Set a large pot or dutch oven over med heat. Melt 2 tbsp of butter. Sprinkle in 2 tbsp of flour and whisk until it is combined. This is a roux, and this will thicken the liquid. Cook this over med heat for 3-5 minutes while stirring frequently.

Once the roux has cooked for 3-5 minutes, warm the 2 cups of milk in the microwave or over the stove top until it is just warmed through. Pour over the roux slowly while whisking. Whisk this until the roux and milk have totally combined. Let this mixture cook over med heat until it thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon (about 5-7 minutes). Make sure to stir it frequently.

Once the liquid has thickened, add in the 4 cups of chicken broth, black pepper, salt, garlic powder, and onion powder. Give it a good stir. Add in the chicken and put the lid on. Crank the heat to med-high. Let this hang out while you prepare the dumplings.

To prepare the dumplings, make a mental note that your hands are about to get quite sticky. Homemade dumplings are the way to go, so if you have a thing about dirty hands- go ahead and grab some gloves 🙂

In a bowl, add the 2 cups of flour, baking powder, and salt. Give it a good stir. Next, add in the 1 cup of lukewarm water and 2 tbsp of vegetable or canola oil. Combine with your hands until it is all mixed together. Pinch a small piece of dough from the mixture and drop it directly into the pot. It will float, and this is okay. Repeat this process until all of the dough is in the pot. I make my dumplings between the size of a quarter and silver dollar. Not too big, not too small. Once all of the dough is in the pot, give it a gentle stir and put the lid on. Lower the heat back to medium. Set a timer for 20 minutes and walk away!


Once the 20 minutes are up, uncover the pot and give everything a good stir. The dumplings will look smooth and soft on the outside. The inside will be cooked through and ready to eat.


Ladle the chicken & dumplings into a bowl, and eat! My kids LOVE this dish. I call it biscuit soup because they don’t fully grasp what a dumpling is, so I compare it to a biscuit and they are instantly excited. Kids are easy to please….most days.


I really hope you enjoy this recipe. I love cooking it for family and friends. Even if you don’t think you like chicken and dumplings, give my recipe a try. I have encountered several people who grew up with a not-so-good recipe they were forced to eat… and once they tried this one, they were hooked! It is light, comforting, and filling all at the same time.

As always, thank you for your support! If you try any of my recipes, I would love some feedback.

Lots of love and many blessings,


Perpetua’s answer was simple and clear. Pointing to a water jug, she asked her father, “See that pot lying there? Can you call it by any other name than what it is?”

Her father answered, “Of course not.” Perpetua responded, “Neither can I call myself by any other name than what I am — a Christian.”


Effortless Boiled Eggs

Have you ever boiled an egg and the yolk turned dry and green? Or you tried to peel it and the whole egg white came off with the shell? Cooking eggs is something that is supposed to be so easy, when in fact, it is actually quite difficult. I got pretty tired of ripping my eggs apart during the peeling process, or having a severely overcooked yolk, so I fixed the issue. I am happy to say- I have discovered the perfect way to boil eggs with a shell that’s easy to peel. I hope this works for you as well as it does for me! Enjoy.

Effortless Boiled Eggs

You will need:DSC_0348

  • 1 dozen raw eggs
  • 1 medium pot
  • 6-8 cups of water
  • 1 tray of ice cubes (or 1-2 cups of ice from a dispenser)

Line the bottom of your pot with the eggs. Each egg should have its own place and not be stacked on top of another egg. Fill the pot with water until the water line is just covering each egg. The less they bounce around, the better. DSC_0352DSC_0356Put the pot with the eggs and water onto a burner. Bring the water to a boil and let it boil for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the pot sit there as is for 20 minutes. Do not move the pot or touch the eggs. Just let them sit peacefully. Walk away. Set a timer. Ignore them. Once the timer goes off, fill a bowl with cool water and dump the ice in. Place each egg in the ice bath with a large spoon, or you can *carefully* pour off the water from the pot into the sink and put the ice water in there on top of the eggs. Up to you. Let the eggs hang out in the cold water for 3-5 minutes. DSC_0362DSC_0366Once the 3-5 minutes are up, you can begin to peel them. The best way I have found is to gently tap each end of the egg until it cracks, and then make smaller taps around the egg. I give it a gentle hug with my hand until the whole shell has kind of loosened itself from the egg. Peel the shell off slowly. It should start to come off in large chunks, or even in ribbons. DSC_0368DSC_0371Make your way through the eggs and give them all a peel. I usually end up eating one or two as I go. I love boiled eggs, and so do my kids (and dogs). They should all come out looking pretty round and smooth, and the yolk should be a nice yellow color and soft to the touch. You can store them in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 10 days.


I hope you enjoy this helpful recipe. I know it may not seem like much of a big deal, but if you have struggled with cooking and peeling boiled eggs before- you are not alone, and I’ve got you covered.

It is the 3rd Friday during Lent. I pray you are holding strong to your Lenten commitments. I can honestly say I have not eaten any fast food since before Ash Wednesday. I am super proud of myself, and I feel a renewed sense of self-control. Take care of your spiritual life, and seek others who are like-minded to help you along the journey. There is nothing better than a community of people who live for God by your side.

Lots of love and many blessings,


Let him who is wise understand these things;
let him who is prudent know them.
Straight are the paths of the LORD,
in them the just walk,
but sinners stumble in them.

Hosea 14:10

Our Daily Bread

I love bread. It is not only delicious, but it really connects with me spiritually. There is something about making bread from scratch that warms my heart. I think about it as an ancient food that has been eaten since the discovery of grain. It is a staple food, and one that brings families together. It is filling, it goes well with everything, and it makes just about everyone happy. I have a two part recipe for you today- one is for a simple fluffy loaf of delicious white bread, and another is cinnamon raisin bread. Both loaves come from the same dough recipe, so if you choose to forego the cinnamon raisin part- you will still end up with two loaves of delicious bread. Enjoy!DSC_0282

You will need:

  • 6 cups of bread flour
  • 2 cups of water (100-110*F)
  • 1 packet of active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup of sugar *honey works great too!
  • 2 loaf pans
  • non-stick spray or extra canola oil
    • For the cinnamon raisin part:
    • 1/3 cup of sugar
    • 1 tbsp cinnamon
    • 1/3 cup of raisins
    • 4 tbsp softened butter
    • 1 egg
    • 1 tsp milk or water

To start, empty the packet of yeast into a mixing bowl. Dissolve the 1/4 cup of sugar into the warm water (really try and get it between 100-110*F-otherwise the yeast will not activate properly). Pour the water over the yeast and give it about 5 minutes to sit. It should activate and look like a little fireworks show in the water. If you walk up and it just looks like the bottom right photo I have right here- you missed the show, but don’t worry, it activated while you weren’t looking! If the yeast does not activate, the water was either not warm enough, or it was too hot.


Once the yeast has activated, go ahead and add in the 1/4 cup of canola oil, 5 1/2 cups of flour, and 1 1/2 tsp of salt. If you’re using a stand mixer, attach the dough hook and mix on low until it all comes together on the hook. If it is too sticky, add in 1 tbsp of flour at a time until it is just right. If you are using a bowl and spoon (or your hands), mix it together until it starts to form a ball. Same rule applies if it is too sticky.


Go ahead and flour a flat surface with a sprinkle of the remaining bread flour. Turn the dough out onto the surface and give it a sprinkle of flour on top. Knead with your hands for 3-4 minutes and shape into a ball. Put the ball of dough into a well-oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, or a towel, and let it rise for 1 hour until doubled in size.


Once the dough has doubled in size, go ahead and prep for the next few steps. Lightly spray your loaf pans with non-stick spray (or manually oil them with canola oil). Re-flour your kneading surface. Mix together the butter, sugar, and cinnamon for the cinnamon raisin bread until it looks like a creamy spread. If you don’t want to make the cinnamon raisin bread, just move along to the loaf making process.


Punch the dough down and begin folding it in on itself. You will notice that it is a bit oily and has a lot of air in it. This is a good thing! Once you have it in a ball, turn it out onto the floured surface and give it a good knead. You might need to sprinkle a bit more flour on it to keep it from sticking to the surface. Go ahead and split the dough in half. Knead one ball of dough for another 1-2 minutes, and then shape it into a loaf by forming it into a log. Place this into a loaf pan.


For the cinnamon raisin bread, roll out the other ball of dough until it is about 1/2 inch thick. Spread the cinnamon, sugar, and butter mixture all over. Top with raisins. Roll into a loaf shape and tuck into the loaf pan. Cover the loaf pans and let rise for 1 hour until almost doubled in size.


Preheat the oven to 350*F when you’ve got about 20 minutes left on the second rise. For the loaf of white bread, I take a serrated knife and score it into a criss-cross pattern. For the cinnamon raisin bread, I brush it with an egg wash on top. Beat an egg with 1 tsp of milk until scrambled. Brush it on the top of the loaf. This is what gives bread and pastries that nice shiny color. You can do this to the other loaf as well. Up to you!


Put the loaves into the oven and bake for 30 minutes exactly. When the time is up, remove them from the oven and turn them out of their pans onto a surface to cool. Make sure they are mostly cooled before you cut into them. A lot of breads will collapse if you don’t let them cool properly. Serve them up with butter, jelly, preserves, etc. Both of these breads are delicious by themselves, too.DSC_0266

Once they are cut, store them at room temp in a sealed bag or wrapped in a small towel. These breads will stale easily if left exposed to air. If you want to freeze a loaf or two for later, pop each one in a gallon freezer bag and freeze it for up to six months. Thaw on the counter for a couple hours before using.


This bread is easy to make, and I thoroughly enjoy the process. I make it quite often and typically keep a loaf in the freezer until its time for me to make more. I am a huge fan of cinnamon raisin bread, and what’s great about this dough is that you can cut it into cinnamon rolls! You can also make your own variations with different dried fruits, spreads, nuts, etc. This dough is quite versatile.

I hope you love this recipe. If you make it, please leave me some feedback. I love hearing how my recipes have worked for you! I also hope that your Lenten season is bringing you closer to God. I just finished reading Scott Hahn’s book The Fourth Cup yesterday. It was amazing, and I highly recommend it!

As always, thank you for your support. If you don’t already, give me a follow over at @thecatholickitchen on Instagram.

Lots of love and many blessings,


Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and for ever.


Eggplant Parmesan

This dish is one of my go-to vegetarian meals when I am planning on having company over. I have cooked it for several years, but it wasn’t until the last year or so that I got it down to what is now my favorite version. My husband and kids love this recipe, as well as many of my friends who have tried it. It is an excellent meal for Lent during days of abstinence from meat. Let’s get started!DSC_0128

You will need:

  • 2 eggplant, cut into 1/2 inch thick slices
  • 1 cup of whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp oregano
  • 2 tsp basil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2-3 cups of your favorite pasta sauce (I use a tomato basil one from the jar for this recipe. Feel free to go homemade if you have a great recipe you love!)
  • 1-2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp milk
  • canola or olive oil spray
  • 1lb pasta of choice (I used rigatoni- it’s one of my favorites with eggplant.)

Preheat the oven to 450*F and line a large sheet pan with parchment paper.

Slice the eggplant into 1/2 inch thick circles. Some will be larger than others in diameter, and that’s perfectly fine. Brush with olive oil on both sides, and grill for 2-3 minutes on each side until grill marks are set. Do not cook until soft. You want these to stay mostly firm.

Once the eggplant is grilled, set aside on a plate and get the breading mixture together. Add the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, basil, oregano, and salt into a bowl and mix together. Scramble the two eggs plus milk in a separate bowl. Dip the eggplant into the egg mixture, enough to coat both sides, and then place into the bowl of the breadcrumb mix. Coat the eggplant with the breadcrumb mix generously, making sure to cover as much of the eggplant slice as possible. Set on the sheet pan and repeat this process until all slices of eggplant are coated.

Next, spray the eggplant slices with canola or olive oil. Place into the oven and bake for 25 minutes at 450*F. Once the 25 minutes is up, the eggplant will be nice and golden brown. Go ahead and top each slice with a generous spoonful of sauce, and then top it with about 2 Tbsp of cheese. Return to the oven and bake for 5-7 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly. *Side note: during the eggplant baking process, start the pasta water with about 10 minutes left in the initial 25 minute baking time. This will give enough time for the water to come to a boil, and for your pasta to cook while the eggplant is finishing off during the 5-7 minute cheese melting process.

Once your pasta is finished, toss it with 1-2 cups of the pasta sauce. Serve the eggplant parmesan alongside the pasta. No knife necessary-just a fork and an appetite for something delicious is all you’ll need!


Everyone in my family loves this recipe. I used to wonder what was missing from my eggplant parm, and come to find out, the step I take to grill it beforehand really makes a huge difference. It adds a ton of flavor and really makes the eggplant stand out. I have been cooking a lot more due to my Lenten commitment of not getting takeout or fast food. It is very welcomed, and something I think I will stick to even after these 40 days are up.

I hope you love this recipe as much as we do. There are usually zero leftovers after I make it, and I hope it is the same for you! If you end up making this recipe, please leave some feedback on how it turned out.

As always, thank you for your support.

Lots of love and many blessings,


The Spirit drove Jesus out into the desert,
and he remained in the desert for forty days,
tempted by Satan.
He was among wild beasts,
and the angels ministered to him.

After John had been arrested,
Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God:
“This is the time of fulfillment.
The kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent, and believe in the gospel.”

Mark 1:12-15

The Best Vegetable Curry…Ever.

My entire family just gobbled up this veggie curry. I wrote this recipe specifically for this Lenten Season. This is a wonderful meal for Ash Wednesday, meatless Fridays, and days we fast.  It is filling, nutritious, and family friendly. Without further delay, let’s get started!


You will need:

  • 2 teaspoons each: ground ginger, ground cumin, ground coriander, ground turmeric, curry powder, and paprika (all are easy to find in your regular grocery store seasoning section. Don’t be intimidated by the new spices. You will love them!)
  • 1 teaspoon each: chili powder, cinnamon, and salt.
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (please don’t skip this- it adds just the right amount of warmth without being spicy)
  • 1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 sweet potatoes, chopped into small cubes
  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup of frozen green peas
  • 1 lime, juice and zest
  • 1 15oz can of tomato sauce
  • 1 can of lite coconut milk
  • 1 cup of Basmati rice
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 8oz container of plain yogurt (I used Greek- I keep it on hand and I enjoy the tang)
  • 2 large pieces of naan bread
  • 4 Tbsp canola or mild tasting oil of your choice
  • 1 Tbsp butter (optional…but I like it)

Preheat your oven to 375* F. Follow these steps in order to make sure everything is ready around the same time.

The first step is to get the vegetables in the oven. I like to roast the vegetables before putting them into the curry. I have found that this boosts the overall flavor and texture versus letting the veggies cook in the curry.

Place the sweet potatoes, cauliflower, and chickpeas onto a sheet pan. Toss them all lightly with a mild tasting oil of your choice. I use light tasting olive oil (I keep it around for salads), but canola oil would be perfect here too. Do not season these vegetables at all. They will go into the curry sauce at the end. Roast them for 40 minutes at 375.


Next, you’ll want to rinse the rice. Basmati rice is absolutely wonderful alongside curry. However, it needs to be treated a certain way in order to come out at its best. The key is to wash away as much starch as possible from the grains. This will allow for each grain to be individual in the end and not sticking to each other.

To achieve this, pour the rice into a bowl and cover with cool water. Swirl it around with your hand until the water is cloudy. Carefully pour out the water without dumping out the rice. Repeat this process 3-4 more times until the water is clear. Once the water is clear, let the rice soak for 20-30 minutes while you carry on with the recipe.

Now, it’s time to get the curry together! Set a deep skillet or shallow dutch oven over medium heat. Add in the butter and oil until heated through. Next, add in the onion and garlic. Stir around until the onion is softened, about 3-5 minutes.

Once the onion has softened, lower the heat to med-low and add in all of the spices. Stir around and let the spices cook for 2-3 minutes to really let their flavors come out. After the 2-3 minutes is up and your kitchen smells amazing, add in the tomato sauce + half a can of water (this ensures all of the tomato sauce comes out of the can, and it also adds a little more liquid to the curry), coconut milk, lime juice, and lime zest. Stir until combined. Cover and let it cook together while you prepare the remaining ingredients.

Now, back to the rice! Bring 1 3/4 cups of water to a boil in a medium pot. Add in a pinch of salt. Once the water is boiling, add in the rinsed, soaked, and drained rice. Bring it back to a boil for 1 minute. Put the lid on the pot and set the heat as low as it can go. Let the rice cook for 15 minutes.

While the rice is cooking, get the veggies out of the oven and transfer to the curry (leave the oven on so you can warm the naan bread during the last few minutes before mealtime). Go ahead and add in the 1 cup of frozen peas. Give everything a big stir. Cover the pot and let it cook together while the rice finishes (about 10-15 minutes).

Once the rice is done cooking, leave it covered, but remove it from the heat and let it sit for five minutes. Get your plates out during this time, and warm the naan bread straight on the oven rack for 2-3 minutes.

Once the five minute is up on the rice, take the lid off and fluff it with a fork. It should be perfect!

To serve: put 1/2 cup of rice on one side of the plate, and fill the other half of the plate with the veggie curry. Top the curry with chopped cilantro. Put a nice dollop of tangy yogurt on the side of the plate next to the curry. Tuck a piece of naan bread near the rice. I eat this dish with my hands using the naan as my utensil, and I also go for a spoon or fork with the rice and curry. It is enjoyable from many angles!


I really hope you love this recipe! It is absolutely wonderful, and I wanted to share something vegetarian friendly and easy to use for our meatless days during this season of Lent. My kids loved it, especially my 11 month old, and we had plenty of curry leftover to freeze. That’s right, this is freezer friendly! Just put what you don’t eat into a gallon freezer, and reheat for 30 minutes to 1 hour on med-low heat with 1/2 cup of water when you’re ready to eat it next.

If you make this recipe, please let me know how it turns out. I am going to be posting a few more vegetarian recipes over the coming days.

As always, thank you for supporting me. I really enjoy sharing recipes with all of you. It makes me feel like I am doing something creative and useful.

Lots of love and many blessings,


53 Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day.

John 6:53-54



Instant Pot 10 Minute Taco Pasta

If you follow me on Instagram, you might have read that I am pregnant. I am thirteen weeks along as of Tuesday, and I am so very excited to welcome our new child in August! We find out if we are having a boy, or our fourth girl, on the 10th. Although we’d love to add a little boy to the family, we will be delighted to have another hilarious little girl running around our house.

Every pregnancy is different. This time around, I am more nauseous. I find myself craving food for 10-15 minutes, and if I can’t get it within that time frame, I become nauseous again and don’t want to touch it. It is a vicious cycle. I saw this recipe on my sister’s Instagram and asked her to *please* share it with me. She loves her Instant Pot as much as I do, and she’s also on a busy schedule with work, kids, sports, school, etc. She also loves food as much as I do, so I trust what she makes to be delicious! This recipe takes a whopping ten minutes, and the whole family was impressed. I hope you love it!

10 Minute Taco Pasta

You will need:

  • 1 packet reduced sodium taco seasoning (or you can make your own. Recipe for 1 packet is as follows: 1 tbsp chili powder,  1 1/2 tsp ground cumin, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp paprika, 1/4 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp onion powder, 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, 1/4 tsp dried oregano)
  • 1 lb ground beef (or turkey if you’d prefer)
  • 1/2 lb small pasta (medium shells, elbow macaroni, etc)
  • 2 cups low sodium beef broth
  • 1 8oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese (colby jack is also okay)

Turn the Instant Pot to saute. Brown the ground beef until it is cooked through.

Once the meat is cooked, add in the tomato sauce, beef broth, taco seasoning, and pasta. Give it a big stir. Put the lid on the Instant Pot and seal the pressure valve. Set the timer for five minutes on high pressure.

Once the timer goes off, do a quick release on the pressure valve. Be sure to block the steam with a towel or an oven mit so you don’t hurt yourself. Keep kiddos away from this too. Once the lid is off, add the shredded cheese on top of the taco pasta. Put the lid back on and let it sit there for 5 minutes to melt while you get the plates ready.

The taco pasta has a lot of flavor, and there’s a little kick from the red pepper flakes if you opt to make your own taco seasoning. If you don’t think you’ll like the bit of spice, omit the red pepper flakes from the recipe completely. I served this alongside a big side salad full of tomatoes, cucumbers, crunchy lettuce, and cool buttermilk ranch dressing. It was the perfect complement to the taco pasta.


Our whole family loved this recipe. I hope you do too! It takes no time at all to make, and it really tastes delicious.

As we make our way into February, I can’t help but focus on what I want to work on during this Lenten season. It is such a great opportunity to do some fine tuning and personal work on ourselves. I am always one to sacrifice something in my life during Lent, and I also try and add in more prayer, or to attend daily Mass.

I hope you enjoy the weekend. Give this recipe a try, and if you have a minute, please let me know what you think! I will try and post more of these quick ones. I know I appreciate them after a long day.

Lots of love and many blessings,


See, I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the covenant in whom you delight—indeed, he is coming, says the Lord of hosts. But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears?

Mal 3:1-2

Tex-Mex Delight

The title of this recipe just makes me smile! I am from Texas, and there is nothing like Tex-Mex style food. This whole recipe makes enough for 2 9×13 pans. We had one today for lunch, and one is covered with foil and in the freezer to bake off for another day.

This recipe is definitely more on the healthy side. It is made with brown rice, black beans, steak (or chicken, or no meat at all if you prefer!), homemade enchilada sauce, and topped with just a little cheese and cilantro. It is wonderful to eat and the whole family loves it! I started the process the night before, and you will understand why as you move down the steps.


You will need:

  • For the main filling:
    • 2 cups of black beans (overnight soak)
    • 4 cups dry brown rice (8 cups cooked)
    • 1.5-2 lbs flank steak (marinate overnight)
    • 2 14oz cans of low sodium chicken broth
    • 2 bay leaves
  • Enchilada sauce:
    • 2 8oz cans of tomato sauce
    • 1 14oz can diced tomatoes
    • 1 14oz can of low sodium chicken broth
    • 2tbsp flour
    • 2 tbsp olive oil
    • 2 tbsp minced garlic
    • 3 tbsp chili powder
    • 1 tbsp cumin
    • 1 tbsp onion powder
    • 1 tbsp oregano
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1tsp pepper
  • Toppings:
    • 1 bunch of cilantro, chopped
    • 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
    • Fresh lime slices
    • Avocado (if you can or want)
  • Equipment:
    • 2 9×13 pans, either foil or glass (you can also put this into meal-prep containers)
    • Blender
    • Large pot to cook beans
    • Rice cooker, instant pot, or large pot

To start, the night before I put a 1lb bag of dry black beans in a bowl covered in cold water to soak overnight. This hydrates the beans and ensures a quicker cooking process. It also helps to clean the beans as well. The next day, give them a rinse under cold water to rinse off any debris from the soak. If you want to use canned beans, go for it! I like to use dry because they are less expensive and do not contain any extra sodium. I buy bags of store brand dry beans like it’s crazy. They are so inexpensive and easy to make!

At this point, move the drained beans over to a large pot. Pour in the 2 cans of chicken broth, and add two bay leaves. Let the beans come to a boil for 1 minute, cover the pot, and put the heat on low. The beans will cook for two hours. During this two hours, you will do most of the cooking for the remainder of this recipe. I don’t season the beans right here because I end up freezing the rest for recipes down the road. I keep them simple for now, and season upon individual use.

My little taste tester approved of the beans 🙂 DSC_0725

Moving along to the enchilada sauce. Start by heating a pan over medium heat. Add in 2 tbsp of olive oil, followed by 2 tbsp of flour. Whisk this around until it looks like a creamy roux. This will need to cook for 5 minutes. Stir it constantly. This is going to ensure the enchilada sauce thickens a bit more than a typical enchilada sauce. This is necessary so the dish is not watery at the end of baking.

After the five minutes is up, add in the 2 tbsp of minced garlic. The roux will start to bubble. Make sure you are stirring the garlic around and not letting it sit. Do this for about one minute. After that minute, pour in the can of diced tomatoes, two cans of tomato sauce, and 1 can of chicken broth. Stir this around until it is well incorporated.

Now, to spice things up! Add in the chili powder, onion powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper. Give it a good stir. This will change the color dramatically. It will go from a bright red to a dark red. Let this simmer for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. After the five minutes is up, transfer the sauce to a blender and blend until it is smooth. It will turn the familiar bright red/orange color we all recognize on enchiladas 🙂 Leave the sauce in the blender for now. We will come back to it in a bit.


For the brown rice, I cook mine in the Instant Pot. This recipe is no-fail. It is 4 cups of brown rice to 2 14oz cans of chicken broth. Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes. Natural release for 5 minutes. Quick release after that, and voila! It is perfect every time. This specific style will make sure it is fully cooked and chewy. If you don’t have an Instant Pot, cook the rice according to the package. It usually takes 30-45 minutes in a standard pot. Go ahead and transfer 4 cups of rice to the bottom of each of the 9×13 pans. DSC_0688

If you are a vegetarian, or want to skip the meat part of this, move along to the assembly portion. This recipe is definitely vegetarian friendly 🙂

For the meat, I am using flank steak. I love this cut of meat because it is so perfect for this style of meal. I highly recommend marinating it for at least 8 hours (better if overnight) in something acidic. The meat has longer fibers and is typically a bit tough if not marinated properly. I love to use a marinade called Mojo Criollo by Goya. It is super cheap and makes any and all meat extra tasty. If you cannot find this at your local store, you can order it on Amazon. I use one bottle for 1.5-2lbs of flank steak. Cut the steak in half and put it into a gallon bag, or shallow Tupperware bowl. Cover with the marinade and let it hang out in the fridge overnight. You can also make a marinade I have used before by mixing 2 cups of orange juice, 1/4 cup of lime juice, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1 clove of minced garlic, 1 tsp oregano, 1 tsp salt, and 1 tsp pepper. It is really worth it to marinate it overnight. Please don’t skip this step. It makes all the difference.

Once your meat as been marinated properly, grill it on both sides for 5 minutes. You can also flat sear it in a regular skillet if you don’t have a grill pan. I cook this steak to rare, or medium rare. After it has cooked, let the steak rest on a plate lightly covered in foil for 10-15 minutes. When it is time to cut the steak, cut it into thin strips one way, and then cut it the opposite way to create little squares. It will be cooked again during the baking process at the end, so don’t freak out if it is too pink for your liking. Trust me on this!


Time to assemble the dish! If you haven’t already, go ahead and chop up your bunch of cilantro. You will want to separate it into two halves. Take about 2 tbsp from each half and set aside. This will go on top at the end.

Sprinkle the halved cilantro on top of the brown rice sitting in the dishes. One half per one dish. Next, add in one cup of black beans (drained) into each pan. Split the cut steak in half, and add in one half to each pan on top of the beans. Pour 1-1.5 cups of enchilada sauce on top of the steak. You will have extra sauce- I’ll discuss that in a bit.

Give all of this a big stir until it is well mixed. Once it is all mixed together, top each pan with 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese, and sprinkle the remaining cilantro on top. Bake at 375*F for 20 minutes. You can save the cilantro for after baking if you want. I personally don’t mind if it has been in the oven.


If you don’t want to eat it right now, you can cover with foil and put in the freezer for up to six months. Just put a label on it with what it is, and how long to cook it.

I like to eat mine with a side of sliced avocado and a wedge of lime. This is a delicious meal and something I really love to make. I am not a fan of brown rice, but I will eat it in this recipe every time.


For the extra beans and enchilada sauce- freeze them! Put them both into gallon freezer bags and store for up to six months for another use. When freezing the beans, make sure to add in 1-2 cups of the liquid they cooked in. This makes reheating a lot easier. The enchilada sauce will be thick when reheated. You can add 1/2 cup of chicken broth or water to thin it out. They both reheat perfectly!

I hope you love this as much as my family does. My kids asked for seconds, and it makes plenty of food for a large family. Not to mention, this dish is pretty healthy!

Always remember to pray and give thanks for the food we are given. Taking small steps to make food ahead of time is easy to do, and it allows for us to spend time with our families without being totally stressed out. Have a blessed week!

Lots of love and many blessings,


The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.”

John 1:29