September 18, 2014

Inside Out Honey Whiskey BBQ Bacon Cheese Burgers topped with Mac and Cheese

Today is National Cheeseburger Day! {No, I am not making that up-don't you love food holidays?!} So to celebrate I am sharing one of my favorite burger recipes with y'all: 
Inside Out Whiskey BBQ Bacon Cheese Burgers topped with Mac and Cheese.

My grilled burgers are stuffed with cheese and bacon then glazed with homemade Honey Whiskey BBQ Sauce and finally topped with a scoop of Mac and Cheese {and some more BBQ sauce for good measure!}. These messy but good burgers are a family favorite and I love grillin' them up with my husband and Dad! 
Tip: To save time use premade Mac and Cheese and store bought BBQ Sauce! 
Momma makes good burgers! 

Ingredients:

Makes two 1/2 lb burgers 

  • 1/2 lb ground chuck
  • 1/2 lb ground brisket
  • 2 slices thick cut bacon
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 brioche buns, buttered and toasted
  • 1 cup macaroni and cheese (see my recipe here and do all steps but baking)
  • Honey Whiskey Barbecue Sauce (recipe below)
  • salt/pepper, to taste
  • cooking spray

Directions: 

  1. Cook bacon on both sides in a skillet until partial cooked, not crisp.
  2. Remove and drain on a paper towel lined plate.
  3. Chop bacon into pieces and set aside.
  4.  Form two 1/2 lb burger patties using 60% chuck and 40% brisket.
  5. Make a well in the center of patties and add bacon pieces.
  6. Top with 1/4 cup shredded cheese.
  7. Mold the burger meat to cover the cheese and bacon.
  8. Brush both burgers with some Honey Whiskey BBQ Sauce and season with salt and pepper on both sides.
  9. Place on a heated grill and cook to desired temp.
  10. Remove from grill, let rest for 5-10 minutes.
  11. Place burger patty on a split toasted brioche bun, top with a heaping mound of macaroni and cheese, a healthy drizzle of warm BBQ sauce, and the top bun.
  12. Serve immediately with lots of napkins and enjoy!

Honey Whiskey BBQ Sauce:

Ingredients:

  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • 15oz tomato sauce
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup Worcestershire
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • 1-2 tbsp tomato paste (depending on how thick you want the sauce)
  • 3/4 cup Whiskey, I use Maker's Mark or Jack Daniels 
  • salt/black pepper

Directions:

  1. Add onions, garlic, and whiskey to a pot over medium heat.  
  2. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. 
  3. Cook for about 10 minutes until onions have softened. 
  4. Meanwhile mix all remaining ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well combined.
  5. Add mixture to the pot with the onions, stir, and simmer for about 20 minutes.
  6. Pour the sauce into a strainer inside of a large bowl. 
  7. Remove and discard the onions and garlic. 
  8. Serve warm and refrigerate the leftover sauce. 
First the Honey Whiskey BBQ Sauce
Add onions, garlic, and whiskey to a pot over medium heat.  
Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. 
Cook for about 10 minutes until onions have softened. 
Meanwhile mix all remaining ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well combined.
Add mixture to the pot with the onions, stir, and simmer for about 20 minutes.
Pour the sauce into a strainer inside of a large bowl.
Remove and discard the onions and garlic.
Serve warm and refrigerate the leftover sauce. 

Now for the Burger!
Cook bacon on both sides in a skillet until partial cooked, not crisp.
Remove and drain on a paper towel lined plate.
Chop bacon into pieces and set aside.
Form two 1/2 lb burger patties using 60% chuck and 40% brisket.
Make a well in the center of patties and add bacon pieces.
Top with 1/4 cup shredded cheese.
Mold the burger meat to cover the cheese and bacon.
Brush with the Honey Whiskey BBQ Sauce and season with salt and pepper.
Prepare Mac and Cheese. Here's my recipe (minus the bacon) or use premade. 
Time to get your grill on!
Place on a heated grill and cook to desired temp.
Remove from grill, let rest for 5-10 minutes.
  
I use buttery, toasted Brioche buns for the burgers.
OMG these burgers are out of this world! Look how juicy and cheesy they are!
Top buns with your juicy burgers.
Then add a healthy scoop of mac and cheese on top of each burger patty.
Now drizzle some warm Honey Whiskey BBQ sauce on top of the mac and cheese. 
Serve warm with a stack of napkins!
If your mouth is NOT watering right now you must be a vegetarian {this burger may convert you!}.
I served my burgers with a side of my Mom's baked beans and my favorite Buffalo Blue Cheese Corn on the Cob. 'Messy but good' dinner for all!

September 16, 2014

Chocolate Pecan Cheese Crunchers Dessert Bars

Looking for a decadent, creamy dessert that will satisfy your sweet tooth? Look no further- my Chocolate Pecan Cheese Crunchers are packed with flavor, crunch, and cream cheese deliciousness!

*Adapted from my wonderful friend Lora's recipe!
 What would I do without friend's like Lora?! 

Ingredients

Makes 12 bars.
  • 8 ounce Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips
  • 4 tbsp butter, softened
  • 1 cup chocolate graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp flour

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a double boiler, melt butterscotch chips and butter until smooth.
  3. Pour into a large bowl and mix in chocolate graham crackers and pecans.
  4. Reserve one cup and pour the remaining crumble in an ungreased 8X8 baking dish.
  5. Press down on the bottom of the dish to make a crust.
  6. Bake for 12 minutes until crust is set.
  7. In a mixing bowl combine cream cheese and sugar.
  8. Cream until smooth.
  9. Add eggs, lemon juice and flour and mix until well combined.
  10. Remove baked crust from oven and spread cream cheese mixture on top.
  11. Sprinkle with reserved one cup of crumble.
  12. Bake for 20-25 minutes until filling is set and top is bubbly.
  13. Let cool and then slice into 12 bars.

 
 Pecans, butterscotch, cream cheese, and chocolate...I can't even begin to tell you how decadently delicious this dessert is!
Cut into 12 bars and watch them disappear (make sure to save one- or two- for yourself!). 
Perfect for upcoming Holiday parties! 

September 15, 2014

Meatless Monday: Creamy Parmesan Squash and Mushroom Pasta

This delicious veggie dish will trick your taste buds and make you think you're eating a rich and cheesy fettuccine pasta dish! But wait--it's squash pasta instead! Super easy with only 6 ingredients, this recipe is healthy and filling and even your meat and potatoes lovin' family with gobble this dish up!
 

Ingredients

  • 4 ounce Philadelphia Italian Herb and Cheese Cooking Creme or Alouette Garlic and Herb Cheese (or similar cream cheese) 
  • 5-6 mushrooms , sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 3 yellow squash and/or zucchini, peeled
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • salt/pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Heat a skillet over medium and add olive oil.
  2. Add sliced mushrooms and saute until soft.
  3. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  4. Meanwhile, peel squash length wise all the way down to the seeds. You should have long strips of squash (about 1 1/2 cups per squash).
  5. Toss in squash, season with salt and pepper and saute for a minute, until cooked down.
  6. Mix in creme and stir to combine, cooking for another minute.
  7. Pour into serving bowl and top with shredded Parmesan.
  8. Optional: also delicious with sliced chicken or sausage! 

Just a few simple flavorful ingredients make this squash pasta.
Heat a skillet over medium and add olive oil and mushrooms. Saute until soft then add garlic and saute another 30 seconds.
Peel squash length wise all the way down to the seeds.
 You should have long strips of squash (about 1 1/2 cups per squash).
Toss in squash, season with salt and pepper and saute for a minute until cooked down.
Mix in creme and stir to combine, cooking for another minute.
Serve warm with Parmesan cheese on top.
Of course, you can also add meat to the squash pasta! I added spinach and cheese sausage the next night for a tasty and filling meal even Ava liked!~


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