Category Archives: Food

Easy Crockpot Black Bean Soup

We’re big fans of black beans in my house. I use them in my chili and recently figured out how to turn them into burgers. Now, I’m back with a new recipe. One that became a family favorite after the first pot.

It’s really easy to make. You don’t even need to worry about soaking the beans.

Here’s what you need:

  • 16oz bag of dried black beans
  • 32oz carton of beef broth
  • 14.5oz can of beef broth
  • Red bell pepper, diced
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 jalapeno peppers (ribs & seeds removed), diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup diced carrot
  • 2 tsp mild chili powder
  • 1 tsp sweet leaf basil
  • 1 tsp ground oregano
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 15.25oz can of corn, drained
  • 12oz sausage with bacon, browned, crumbled, and rinsed

Here’s what you do:

Rinse the beans and add them to the crockpot. Pour in the broth, add the peppers, bay leaves, carrots, onions, garlic, and spices. Cover and cook on low for 10 hours.

After cooking all day it will look very thick but it will all loosen up as you stir it. Remove the bay leaves. With an immersion blender, carefully blend the soup to the desired consistency. I chose to leave mine a little chunky. You wouldn’t have to do this step, but it does give the soup a creamy texture. If you don’t have an immersion blender, you could remove a cup or two and blend it in a regular blender.

Stir in the browned sausage and corn. Cook for another 15 minutes to bring them to temperature. I chose to wait to add these last two ingredients because I didn’t want them blended in… and because I wanted the corn to be crisper and not overcooked.

This is a very hearty soup with a smoky flavor. It’s hearty and flavorful enough that I didn’t even want crackers with it. This is the kind of soup that’s best enjoyed with some fresh, crusty bread to dip in it. I garnished my bowl with a little bit of sour cream.

Want to make this soup vegetarian? Swap vegetable broth for the beef broth and skip the sausage. I’m sure it would still be good.

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Easy Homemade Black Bean Burgers

My youngest daughter is a big fan of black beans. She could eat them right out of the can. So when she asked if we could make black bean burgers I knew she wasn’t kidding.

We researched some recipes online… and then did what we usually do. Adapted and mashed them all together into a recipe that was our own and that we thought we would enjoy. This recipe is what we came up with.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cans black beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 ¼ cups quick oats
  • 1 half onion, finely diced
  • 1 half yellow pepper, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup shredded cheese
  • 2 tbls. Worchestershire sauce
  • 2 tbls. BBQ sauce
  • ¼ tsp seasoned salt

What you do:

Bake the beans on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet at 325° for 14 minutes. While the beans are baking sautee onion, garlic, and pepper until tender. You can sautee them in butter or your favorite oil. I went with bacon grease for flavor.

Mix the beans, onion, garlic, and pepper in a bowl. Stir in the quick oats, BBQ sauce, Worcestershire sauce, seasoned salt, cheese, and eggs. Mash all over with a fork. Stir one final time and put in the refrigerator to chill for 15 minutes.

Form into 4-6 patties… depending on how big you want your burgers.

Grill on lightly oiled foil over medium heat for 15 minutes, flipping halfway.  You could also bake, pan-fry, or air fry them.

Black Bean Burger
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Cast Iron Skillet BBQ Pizza

This isn’t going to be one of those posts where I share a specific recipe. It’s one where I share a basic recipe idea… and then you can take it from there and get creative in your own kitchen.

To make this BBQ pizza I started with 3 pizza crust mixes. You’re probably familiar with the ones I’m talking about. The kind that come in a pouch where you add 1/2 cup of hot water per mix and then stir them all together.

(How many mixes you use depends on the number/size of the pizzas you’re making and how thick you want the crust. Through trial and error, I determined 3 was perfect number to make a small, medium, and large pizza in our cast iron skillets.)

I followed the direction on the package and let the dough rest while I got the rest of the ingredients ready. This included draining a can of mushroom stems and pieces, thinly slicing an onion, and thawing out some leftover crock-pot root beer pulled pork that we had in the freezer.

I coated each skillet with some leftover bacon grease and then rolled out the pizza dough. Then it was time to assemble our BBQ pizzas.

For the sauce, you can use your favorite BBQ sauce and then top it however you want. I used pork, onions, mushrooms, spinach, and cheddar jack cheese. They baked at 425 degrees for about 20 minutes and turned out great!

Cast Iron Skillet BBQ Pulled Pork Pizza

For toppings you can use whatever leftover BBQ meat you have on hand. BBQ chicken would be really good. I think peppers, jalapenos, and chopped tomatoes would also be good additions.

What would you put on your BBQ pizza?

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