Archives for April 2016

A Healthier Mississippi Pot Roast Slow Cooker Recipe

Treat your family to a healthier Mississippi pot roast. Equally as flavorful, equally as easy. 

A healthier variation of the popular Mississippi Pot Roast slow cooker recipe. Equally as flavorful, equally as easy as the original.

I was gabbing with some friends recently when one of them mentioned she was watching a morning show and they featured a recipe for something called Mississippi Roast. I came right home and looked up the recipe.

We love a good slow cooker recipe in our house. But when I saw the ingredients for Mississippi Roast, I knew I wouldn’t serve it to my family.

An Au Jus packet contains caramel color, corn syrup solids, and sodium carboxymethycellulose. In other words, it has a known carcinogen, a sweetener more deadly than sugar, and a potential carcinogen.

I don’t use Au Jus packets, and I’m not about to start.

The dilemma became: What could I use to create a healthier version of Mississippi Roast without completely reinventing it?

The recipe needed to stay simple to make. I wanted a recipe that was completely add-it-and-go just like the original.

Here’s what I did:

While I am a firm believer that butter makes things better, a boneless chuck arm roast has enough fat to add succulent flavor to a finished roast. So I decided to swap the butter for beef broth.

A healthier variation of the popular Mississippi Pot Roast crockpot recipe. Equally as flavorful, equally as easy as the original.

Trust me. You won’t miss the butter.

That brings us to the pepperoncini peppers. I’ll eat almost anything if it has pepperoncinis on it.

What I won’t eat is yellow dye and sulfites. As a result, I only buy the Divina brand of pepperoncinis you can find at Whole Foods Market. I must warn you, this brand has a bit more “kick” than the other brands.

The original recipe calls for only 5 peppers. Ummmm. I added the whole jar along with the juice.

Did I regret it? Not. One. Bit.

A healthier variation of the popular Mississippi Pot Roast. Equally as flavorful, equally as easy as the original.

The last ingredient in the original recipe is a packet of ranch dressing.

I adore ranch. If I could marry ranch, I would.

Therefore, I went with a Simply Organic Ranch Dip packet.

A healthier variation of the popular Mississippi Pot Roast crockpot recipe. Equally as flavorful, equally as easy as the original.

The only ingredient you may not recognize in the Simply Organic Ranch Dip packet is Xanthan Gum. As you can read, it’s considered safe.

Once I had sprinkled the ranch over the roast, I put the lid on my trusty crockpot, set it on low, and let me tell you, the resulting roast did not disappoint.

A healthier variation of the popular Mississippi Pot Roast slow cooker recipe. Equally as flavorful, equally as easy as the original.

A Healthier Mississippi Pot Roast Slow Cooker Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 jar pepperoncini peppers
  • 1 packet Simply Organic Ranch Dip
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 boneless chuck roast

Instructions

  1. Place the chuck roast in the slow cooker.
  2. Add the beef broth. Top roast with as many pepperoncini peppers/juice as your family will enjoy. Sprinkle the ranch dip directly onto the roast.
  3. Place lid on slow cooker, set to low, and cook 8 hours.
http://naturalgreenmom.com/healthier-mississippi-pot-roast-slow-cooker-recipe/

You could opt to remove the roast from the juices and slice it. Or, you could use two forks and shred the meat.

A healthier variation of the popular Mississippi Pot Roast slow cooker recipe. Equally as flavorful, equally as easy as the original.

This recipe is so easy, I plan to make it any time chuck roasts go on sale. I can’t wait to turn the leftovers into sandwiches. Or maybe I’ll top a baked potato. I might even have enough to freeze for a future meal.

Try this healthier Mississippi pot roast and let me know what you think!

Turn Grocery Store Flowers Into a Stunning Arrangement

I’ve finally learned the secret to arranging grocery store flowers into a stunning arrangement and I’m sharing it with you!

How to make stunning arrangements with grocery store flowers. Once you learn the simple trick, you'll find your flower arrangements look professionally done.

Arranging flowers has always perplexed me. For the life of me I could not figure out how to make my flowers look like anything but a bunch of flowers stuck in a vase.

You know what I’m talking about, right?

But I’ve unearthed the secret to bright, full arrangements that look professionally done.

No more sad bouquets. Nope. We are all about to become flower arranging ninjas.

Just FYI, I picked up this bouquet from Costco. I tend to buy my flowers there because of the price, and as I talked about here, their roses are Rainforest Alliance certified.

Let’s start with the basics for any flower arrangements.

Basic Rules for Arranging Grocery Store Flowers

  • Start by stripping all the leaves from flower stems. Once a leaf touches water, it rots quickly.
  • Select a vase where the top is wider than the bottom.
  • When selecting your bouquet, pick one that has 2 to 3 of the same kind of flowers that stand out to your eye and that will form the center of your arrangement.
  • The height of your final arrangement should be one and one half times the height of the vase.
  • Don’t overthink it! Just play with height and color.
  • Once you’ve built your arrangement, be sure to change the water every other day.
  • Keep your arrangement out of direct sunlight to prolong it’s life.

Arrangement Tutorial

Take the vase you have selected and use scotch or wasabi tape to section off the top as in the picture below.

How to make stunning arrangements with grocery store flowers. Once you learn the simple trick, you'll find your flower arrangements look professionally done.

Once you’ve prepped your vase, start with any pieces of greenery and stick them in the outermost sections.

How to make stunning arrangements with grocery store flowers. Once you learn the simple trick, you'll find your flower arrangements look professionally done.

Find the flowers that are the most prominent in shape and color. In this bouquet it was the bright pink gerber daisies. Cut the dominant flowers to different heights and add them to the center square of the tape shape you made.

How to make stunning arrangements with grocery store flowers. Once you learn the simple trick, you'll find your flower arrangements look professionally done.

Start to fill in with the other flowers starting with the highest impact flowers and building outward. Use the tape squares. Add flowers so they are evenly distributed amongst the squares.

How to make stunning arrangements with grocery store flowers. Once you learn the simple trick, you'll find your flower arrangements look professionally done.

Continue to arrange flowers until you like what you see!

How to make stunning arrangements with grocery store flowers. Once you learn the simple trick, you'll find your flower arrangements look professionally done.

The final arrangement! Ta-Da! Having the tape grid at the top of the vase really does help in placing the flowers in different sections. Selecting a vase with a wide top gives the arrangement width.

How to make stunning arrangements with grocery store flowers. Once you learn the simple trick, you'll find your flower arrangements look professionally done.

It really is that easy. If you use washi tape like I did, you will probably want to remove it. Scotch tape is better camouflaged by the flowers.

Before and After

How to make stunning arrangements with grocery store flowers. Once you learn the simple trick, you'll find your flower arrangements look professionally done.

Give it a try and let me know how it works for you!

DIY Quick Flank Steak Rub

No need to purchase a pre-made flank steak rub. This DIY Quick Flank Steak Rub is better than anything you’ll find at the grocery store.

No need to purchase a flank steak rub. Quickly whip up a homemade rub full of flavor.

I could be a vegetarian if it weren’t for steak.

Seriously. I love a great steak.

We tend to always buy flank steaks because they are a cheaper cut but will still turn out tender when grilled.

My favorite way to season a flank steak is with a dry rub you can easily whip up in your own kitchen.

No need to purchase a flank steak rub. Quickly whip up a homemade rub full of flavor.

All you need to do is measure out a few spices, mix, and sprinkle over the steak.

No need to purchase a flank steak rub. Quickly whip up a homemade rub full of flavor.

Then, you’ll need to get your hands dirty. It is important to actually rub the seasonings into the steak. You want to press the rub down into any nooks and crannies to fully impart the flavors. This is not my favorite part, but it is essential to getting the best flavor.

No need to purchase a flank steak rub. Quickly whip up a homemade rub full of flavor.

In this recipe I use organic coconut sugar. I prefer the taste (and the health factor) over brown sugar. However, if what you have is brown sugar, use it.

I actually like to grill and won’t cook my steaks any other way. I time my flank steaks for 6 minutes per side on a medium high grill and it turns out medium rare every time.

Andrea The Natural Green Mom grilling

I think you’ll find that you have all of the spices used to create this rub in your cupboard right now.

DIY Quick Flank Steak Rub

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons ancho chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon organic coconut sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients to a small bowl and stir to combine.
http://naturalgreenmom.com/diy-quick-flank-steak-rub/

This recipe makes enough flank steak rub for 2 to 3 steaks. Store whatever you don’t use in a jar with a tightly fitting lid.

While your steak is on the grill, can I recommend a side of grilled zucchini?

Free Online Baking Class for Kids

Bake for Good

Every kid I’ve ever known has loved to help in the kitchen.

Craftsy has added a new free class to it’s line up called Bake for Good: Kids

This online class will teach them how to make homemade bread at home in 4 short lessons. This would be such a fun (and tasty!) summer activity for kiddos. And it’s FREE!

UPDATE: People have been reporting when they sign up for the site, they are also eligible to get ANY additional class FREE! Simply sign in and they will send you an email that gets you one FREE class!