3-ingredient stuffed mushrooms

Surely you can only be thinking one thing by this title…

Sandra Lee.


Quick run-down on Sandy if you aren’t familiar with her (ahem, Mom): she often makes a meal on her food network show out of various packaged foods. Think cookies with cake mix (I’m guilty of that one), risotto with condensed soup (definitely not guilty, ew) and martinis called white knight-ini. Many people have a strong dislike for her, and while I’m not really a fan, she’s pretty harmless. :)

I saw “stuffing mushrooms” at Trader Joe’s and immediately thought about how easy stuffed mushrooms are to make. They always seem like such a treat too! The easiest way to make them would be to stuff them with one of the many spreads they have at Trader Joe’s and pack it with a little spinach so I did just that.

So you combine the spinach and a spread (I went with the Blue Cheese & Roasted Pecan), stuff it into the mushrooms and bake. So easy it’s kind of ridiculous and definitely considered semi-homemade. I almost went with the frozen spinach artichoke dip since it would be even easier, but I thought I’d mix it up a bit – choose your favorite spread! If you had some bread crumbs in the cupboard, I’d sprinkle a few on top of the mushrooms, but they definitely aren’t necessary.

Sometimes, semi-homemade is just right.

Three-Ingredient Stuffed Mushrooms

by Emily Dingmann

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 25 min

Ingredients (6 mushrooms)

  • 6 stuffing mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen spinach
  • 1/4 cup dip of choice


Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.

Remove stems and wipe down mushrooms if necessary.

Defrost spinach and squeeze out ALL excess water. (Important step or they will be mushy)

Combine spinach and dip in small bowl.

Stuff into mushrooms.

Bake for about 20-25 minutes until golden brown on top.

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Spill it: Are you a Sandra hater or do you appreciate her “semi-homemade” recipes? 


daily eats 1.18.12

Hey Friends!

My last daily eats post was from the Rose Bowl game – thankfully this post has more vegetables, less cheese and no wine! My body thanks me. :)

Morning Liquids: Coffee and coconut creamer + water

Breakfast: I wasn’t very hungry because of a large dinner the night before so I kept it light with a smoothie. In the processor: spinach + frozen pineapple and strawberries + almond milk + greek yogurt. This is my favorite combination as of late!

Clearly we need a blender – any recommendations that aren’t the Vita Mix?

Workout: I got to Lunch Crunch class a little early, so I ran around the block (1 mile). In class we did all sorts of squats, lunges, jumps, dips, etc. and finished with sprints. (I’m horribly slow and finished last on the sprints).

Snack: Eaten while running errands. (think Thin Dark Chocolate bar)

Lunch: Was kind of random – I started with some carrots and celery + hummus while I put everything else together.

Big salad + sweet potato + sprouted tortilla + 1 avocado mashed with fresh basil.

Snack: Apple + raw almond butter while I worked the afternoon away.

Dinner: I snacked on some tortilla chips + salsa while finishing up dinner, which was delicious. Salmon cakes and lemon garlic aoili + steamed broccoli and cauliflower. (Plus another salmon cake).

I finished up the evening with some dried mango + small bowl of cereal.

I need some new evening snacks – what are you currently loving? 

Have a wonderful Thursday and weekend! 

braised chicken with garlic & mushrooms

Braised meat is something that I really didn’t know a ton about, but it sounds so rustic and hearty, doesn’t it?

Like the perfect winter meal. Not that I would know anything about winter anymore, but I hear it isn’t fun. ;)

I had a general idea of what braising was all about, but I wasn’t really sure how it was different from sauteing so I turned to Martha Stewart’s Cooking School book for a few braising facts:

  • braising may be a slower form of cooking, but it doesn’t require a lot of hands-on time
  • it work best with inexpensive cuts of meat, which make it a great technique for beginner cooks
  • as the juices from the meat combine with the vegetables, seasonings and cooking liquid a wonderful rich sauce develops
  • best cuts for braising and stewing: brisket, short ribs, veal shank, lamb shank, pork shoulder, poultry thighs, firm fish


With my new-found braising knowledge I got to work.

And it was pretty amazing. The chicken was tender and topped with a velvety, flavorful mushroom sauce. It is one of those dishes that encompasses everything I look for in a meal. It is satisfying but not heavy, utilizes simple ingredients that can be found in any store and is healthy.

The Taster has already requested that we have it again, so next time I think we’ll try a different meat and different vegetable. The possibilities are endless…

Braised Chicken with Garlic & Mushrooms

by Emily Dingmann

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Keywords: entree gluten-free high protein low-carb chicken fall winter

Ingredients (4 servings)

  • 1 lb chicken thighs
  • 3 Tbsp butter (I used sage compound butter)
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 10 oz sliced portabella mushrooms (about 3 cups)
  • 1 1/2 cups red wine or broth
  • 1 oz cream cheese (if desired)
  • salt & pepper


Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Season chicken with salt and pepper.

Heat 1 Tbsp butter in pan and sear chicken for about 10-12 minutes, flipping after 5 minutes or so when lightly browned.

Remove chicken from pan.

Add 2 Tbsp butter, mushrooms and garlic to pan.

Add wine to pan to deglaze, scraping up pan bits.

Bring to a boil.

Place chicken thighs back in pan and bake for about 45 minutes.

Transfer chicken to a clean plate.

Return pan to burner over medium heat and reduce sauce until desired consistency.

Stir in cream cheese until smooth.

Taste sauce and add any additional seasonings.

Serve chicken with a vegetable, over steamed spinach, rice, pasta or with crusty bread.

Drizzle sauce over chicken.

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squash: a how to


Squash can be an over-whelming vegetable. It is hard to chop, hard to peel and then you have to figure out how you are going to eat it! I received a request for a post on squash last week so I thought I’d put together a few tips that I’ve learned over the years. Please add in your own squash tips, I’m not an expert. :)

There are a few tricks that apply to most of the varieties:

  • microwaving the squash for a few minutes will soften it up if you are having trouble cutting through it
  • when I cut squash in half to roast, I always scoop out the seeds, drizzle with a little water, season with salt & pepper, and cook cut-side down on a pan
  • roasting time will vary, but the flesh should be soft when it is ready to eat


  • cut in half, scoop out the seeds and roast until flesh is soft
  • scoop out squash and top with a pat of butter, salt and pepper
  • recipe to try: acorn squash with sage brown butter



  • can be peeled with a peeler or knife – I usually cut in half where the base starts rounding, then peel, then cut into pieces to roast
  • a great squash to puree and add to soups or use in salads
  • recipe to try: classic butternut squash soup (with variation ideas)



  • a newer squash to the US, kabocha squash comes from Japan
  • like butternut, it is great squash to puree or add to soups
  • cut in half, scoop out seeds and roast
  • recipe to try: roasted kabocha squash


  • cut in half length-wise, roast, scoop out seeds and then scrape the sides to form spaghetti-like strands
  • serve like you would spaghetti with sauce, meatballs, etc. or saute with a touch of butter, garlic, italian herbs and with a sprinkling of parmesan cheese
  • recipe to try: spaghetti squash casserole with ricotta and spinach



  • this is a relatively new squash to me but it is a great one because you can eat the peel and it is very easy to cut
  • cut in half length-wise, scoop out seeds, slice and bake
  • recipe to try: roasted delicata squash with rosemary

*All pictures from Real Simple