It’s no secret that this pandemic has created a challenge for those who have no clue how to cook. We’ve had almost 80 days to perfect our craft in the kitchen, but if you’re anything like me, you’ve got yourself in a rut of preparing the same four meals. With National Cheese Day on the horizon, here are three cheese-filled recipes that will add some spice into your kitchen routine. These one-pan recipes are perfect for celebrating this holiday on June 4, or just when you’re craving some easy, breezy and cheesy.
Cheesy Taco Skillet– adapted from homemadehooplah.com
This spicy spin on the Hamburger Helper we all know and love from our childhood is easy to whip up, and will also keep well as leftovers. This recipe serves six, so you can cut the ingredients in half for a smaller dish. Here’s the recipe:
1 tbsp favorite cooking oil (I use avocado oil)
1 lb. ground beef
½ cup yellow onion, chopped
1 tsp garlic, minced or powder
2 cups water, separated
1 can corn, drained (I use Del Monte’s Sweet Fiesta corn)
1 cup favorite salsa
1 cup favorite taco sauce (I use Ortega)
1 oz any taco seasoning (I use Old El Paso)
2 cups pasta
1 tsp cornstarch
2 cups (or more) Mexican cheese blend, shredded
Salt and pepper, to taste
Avocado, cubed (for serving)
Fresh cilantro, chopped (for serving)
Sour cream (for serving)
- Heat oil in a large skillet. Add ground beef over medium high heat until brown. Drain grease.
- Reduce heat to medium and add chopped onion and garlic to skillet. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook until you can smell the garlic and onion, about 3 minutes.
- Add 1 cup water, drained corn, salsa, taco sauce, taco seasoning and macaroni. Combine ingredients over medium heat and bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover with lid and simmer on low 5-7 minutes.
- Remove lid and add remaining water. Stir. Re-cover and simmer for 5-7 more minutes.
- Sprinkle in cornstarch to thicken sauce. Mix until combined.
- Remove from heat. Add (at least) 1 cup cheese and stir until melted. Sprinkle remainder of cheese on top, then cover. Let sit for 1-3 minutes until cheese is melty.
- Top with sour cream, avocado and cilantro. Add toppings to individual servings to preserve dish for leftovers.
Grilled Cheesy Potatoes– adapted from deliciouslittlebites.com
Nothing says summertime quite like a meal fresh off the grill. These cheesy potato foil packs take just a few minutes to prep, and can be customized with any of your favorite toppings (mine are chopped bacon and garlic). If you don’t have access to a grill, no worries! These can easily be made in the oven, as well. This side dish goes great with your favorite protein and any fresh veggies you have on hand! This recipe serves two people, but I know I won’t have any trouble finishing it off on my own.
½ lb. small potatoes, chopped into ½-inch pieces
½ tbsp butter, melted
½ cup favorite shredded cheese (I like cheddar)
¼ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp onion powder
Pinch of salt and pepper, for taste
Fresh parsley, minced (for serving)
Any other toppings you’d like (for serving)
- Preheat grill to medium high. If using an oven, preheat to 425°F.
- Place chopped potatoes in a large piece of foil.
- Cover evenly with melted butter.
- Season with garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper, then sprinkle half of shredded cheese.
- Wrap foil tightly and place on grill or in oven.
- Cook 10-12 minutes, then flip and cook for additional 10-12 minutes. Poke potatoes with fork to check doneness.
- Remove foil pack from grill or oven. Carefully open foil pack and top with remaining cheese and any additional toppings.
- Leaving foil open, return to grill or oven. Cook for additional 3-4 minutes until cheese is melted.
- Top with parsley. Serve immediately.
Cheesy Summer Squash Flatbreads– adapted from tasteofhome.com
If you’re anything like me, pizza is one of your main food groups. Now that the weather is warming up, this flatbread recipe will get you your pizza fix without feeling heavy and greasy. This Meditteranean spin on a classic dish is perfect for lunch, or to serve alongside your favorite protein at dinner. These flatbreads call for naans, which you can find at Walmart and Aldi. This recipe serves 2-4, depending on how hungry you are.
2-3 small yellow summer squash, thinly sliced
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cups baby spinach, chopped
2 naan flatbreads
⅓ cup favorite hummus (I like roasted garlic)
1 package fresh mozzarella (pearls or whole ball, thinly sliced)
Pinch of salt and pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Toss squash in olive oil and salt. Spread squash in even layer in baking pan. Roast for 8-10 minutes until tender.
- Transfer squash into bowl and stir in chopped spinach.
- Place naan flatbreads on baking sheet or pizza stone. Spread hummus evenly on naan, top with squash mixture and cheese.
- Bake flatbreads 4-6 minutes until cheese is melted.
- Sprinkle with pepper. Serve immediately.