Bowl of louisiana gumbo with a ball of rice in the middle. Spoon is scooping up a piece of shrimp.

Louisiana Gumbo Recipe

Gumbo is a melting pot of rich and flavorful stock, the Holy Trinity of vegetables, and a variety of meat. It is hard to classify what makes a truly authentic Louisiana gumbo recipe because there are about as many variations of gumbo as there are

Two steaks in a cast iron skillet, bathing in butter with rosemary across the top.

Menu Plan: September 28 – October 2

I am in full-on fall mode! This week we have comfort food, autumn vegetables, and a pulled pork that is perfect for enjoying during the Thursday night football game! Our week rounds off with a flavorful garlic-rosemary steak. Perfection! Monday, September 28 Kentucky Hot Brown

Derby Pie with nuts sprinkled on side.

Famous Food From Kentucky

Kentucky was the first US state west of the Appalachian mountains. Over the next 150 years, explorers and natives would build what has become a very rich culture in Kentucky. From bourbon to bluegrass, Kentucky has given many gifts to our nation. Our dinner of

slice of chocolate walnut pecan pie with ice cream on top and caramel drizzled all over.

Bourbon Chocolate Walnut Pecan Pie

The title “Bourbon chocolate walnut pecan pie” is a mouthful! But I wanted to include all of what makes this pie so delicious! Warm bourbon, rich chocolate, and wonderful complexity brought by two different nuts in the pie! This bourbon chocolate walnut pecan pie is

Close up of a Kentucky hot brown sandwich. Two tomatoes on top, and 2 pieces of bacon in a cross pattern.

Kentucky Hot Brown Recipe

The Kentucky hot brown is an open-faced sandwich that is the ultimate comfort food. There is a creamy sauce, crispy bacon, and underneath that is a foundation of soft and pillowy bread. This sandwich was invented by the owner of The Brown Hotel in Louisville,

3 cups of berry mint juleps on a tray, with mint in the background.

Berry Mint Julep Recipe

The mint julep is the official drink of the Kentucky Derby. When we had our Kentucky State dinner I wanted to mix things up just a little bit, so we created berry mint juleps. They were so good! The fruit takes away some of the

Two bowls of Thai cashew chicken with small bowl of cashews

Menu Plan: September 21-25

Easy, cozy, and fun! That sums up this week’s menu! Monday, September 21 Loose Meat Sandwich Recipe Kettle Chips Plums Tuesday, September 22 Sheetpan Jerk Pork Nachos Apples Wednesday, September 23 Skillet Chicken Piccata Angel Hair Pasta Asparagus Nectarines Thursday, September 24 Oven Pot Roast

Loaf of wheat bread. Knife and butter resting on one slice.

Honey Wheat Bread Recipe

Honey wheat bread is one of the first recipes that I learned to make. My mom had an electric wheat mill and she would buy giant bags of whole wheat. I have very vivid memories of pouring the wheat into the mill cup by cup,

Plate of roast beef with carrots, potatoes & mushrooms. Sunflowers and cookbooks in background.

Famous Food from Kansas

I was born in Topeka, Kansas, so it was especially exciting for me to put together our dinner of famous food from Kansas. The nostalgia was great, but actually finding authentic Kansas food was a little tricky. My brother says “Kansas is not really a

4 parfait glasses with pudding topped with Oreos. Gummy worms and flowers on top, and Oreos stacked on the side.

Dirt and Worms Recipe

Dirt and Worms is a fun family-friendly dessert that is easy to make and decadent to eat! You may know this as Kansas Dirt Cake or Dirt Pudding, but my kids think calling it Dirt and Worms is way more fun! Crushed Oreos, cream cheese,

Plate of roast beef with potatoes, carrots and mushrooms piled on top

Oven Pot Roast Recipe

Pot roast has long been considered a classic American Sunday meal. It is perfect because you can do all of the work to prepare it, then walk away and come back a few hours later to your meal complete and ready to serve! Pot roast

bowl of enchilada soup topped with fried tortilla strips, cheese and sour cream

Menu Plan: September 14-18

I get a whole new energy for meal planning when the weather changes. Fall dishes are exciting and cozy! But with the temps still pretty moderate, we are combining light and summery with warm and hearty for this week’s menu. Monday, September 14 Whole Roasted

Loose meat sandwich with 2 pickles, condiments in background

Loose Meat Sandwich Recipe

Depending on where you live, the loose meat sandwich is called different things. In Iowa, it is a Maid-Rite. In other midwest states, it is called a Nu-Way, steamer, Big T, loose hamburger, Tastee, or even a tavern sandwich. So many names, and some slightly

Square of strawberry salad on a plate, with pan of jello salad behind it.

Strawberry Pretzel Salad with Fresh Whipped Cream

Strawberry Pretzel Salad is a popular dish in the midwest. Some serve it as a side dish, and others as a dessert. It is a hit with adults and children alike! The pretzel-crust is addicting with its salty-sweet crunch! And the creamy middle layer and

Famous food from Iowa, Loose Meat Sandwiches in a Basket with Chips, corn above

Famous Food From Iowa

Iowa is a midwestern state that was once a part of Louisiana. It was purchased by the United States in 1803 as a part of the Louisiana Purchase. Some see it is a flyover state, as it has over a million acres of cropland. But

peanut thai curry on a plate with fork

Menu Plan: September 7-11

One of the very first recipes on the blog was Peanut Thai Chicken, and it is the first recipe to get a makeover! I have added some additional ingredient guidance and new photos and added it to the Thursday night menu. It is a great

Simple Steak Tacos on plate with a bowl of chips

Menu Plan: August 31-September 4

Our week starts off with a delicious spatchcocked grilled chicken recipe. This is an easy way to cook a whole chicken on the grill. It makes it so juicy, crispy, and flavorful! We are making the most of our grill with simple steak tacos on

Hoosier sandwich and fries

Famous Food From Indiana

  There are lots of theories on how Hoosier became the state nickname for Indiana. One thing is certain, it is one of the oldest and most widely accepted state nicknames in American history. “Hoosier” was a term originally used mockingly. Those living in Indiana

Slice of Sugar Cream Pie

Old Fashioned Sugar Cream Pie Recipe

Old fashioned sugar cream pie is like a sweet cream cold brew but without the cold brew. It is a very simple pie that is creamy and sweet, with hints of vanilla and cinnamon. The texture is very similar to a custard pie or flan,

easy dinner recipe chimuchurri steak

Easy Dinner Menu Plan: August 24-28

You know I love an easy meal that is big on flavor, and this week’s menu has several recipes that fit that bill. Plus, save calories early in the week with a healthy version of a crunchwrap supreme so that you can indulge on the

Stacked brownies with apricot glaze dripping down

Famous Food From Illinois

Illinois is a land of prairies and rolling hills and is also home to Chicago, one of the largest cities in the nation. The state was once a territory belonging to France, who then lost it to Britain in the French and Indian war. Finally,

Chicago-style deep dish pizza

Chicago-Style Deep Dish Pizza Recipe

A classic Chicago-style deep dish pizza is characterized by a buttery crust, tons of cheese, and a super flavorful sauce. This recipe has all of those and is much easier than you might think. When we decided on deep dish pizza for our Illinois state

Stack of brownies and glass of milk

Ultimate Gooey Chocolate Brownies Recipe

I think brownies should be rich and fudgy, with an intense chocolate flavor. Sure, you can make brownies from a box. But when you really want to impress, it is just a few extra steps to make these gourmet brownies. This is the ultimate gooey

chick fil a salad

Menu Plan: August 17-21

This week’s menu plan includes a make once, serve twice option with our leftovers reinvented feature! Leftovers aren’t boring anymore! Plus a copycat Chick Fil A Nuggets recipe that my kids devoured! So good! Monday, August 17 Smoked Brisket Potato Salad Baked Beans Watermelon Tuesday,

peach whiskey chicken on a plate

Menu Plan: August 10-14

This week’s menu includes recipes that are full of flavor, but pretty simple to make. My favorite this week is Thursday’s Thai Cashew Chicken. It’s the perfect weeknight meal, taking under 30 minutes from start to finish! Monday, August 10 Peach Whiskey Smoked Chicken Potato

Bowl of Buttermilk spice Muffins

Buttermilk Spice Muffins Recipe

Buttermilk spice muffins make me dream of fall. It doesn’t matter if I am eating them in the middle of a 100-degree Texas summer day, or on a crisp fall morning. The warm cinnamon and nutmeg spices, tender and moist muffin, and the decadent streusal

Thai Cashew Chicken

Thai Cashew Chicken Recipe

Thai Cashew Chicken is the perfect dinner for when you are short on time, but you still want something that has a lot of flavor. In Thailand, it is known as Gai Pad Med Mamuang, which means chicken stir fry with cashew nuts. While considered

Bowl of Coconut Curry Cashews

Roasted Coconut Curry Cashews Recipe

Roasted nuts are addictive, especially if they are flavored! These roasted coconut curry cashews are a unique twist on the more traditional roasted cashew, and I would argue they are even more addictive! Sweet, spicy, crunchy, earthy – all the best flavors of your favorite

finger steaks close up

Famous Food from Idaho

Idaho is the 14th largest state in our nation and it is filled with beauty and natural wonders! The Rocky Mountains cover much of the state, spanning from Canada all the way down Idaho’s eastern border. The Snake River winds across southern Idaho. And sand

Pie with berries and jam

Huckleberry Pie Recipe

Huckleberry pie is a delicious summer treat! But fresh huckleberries can be hard to find, especially if you do not live in the Pacific Northwest. This huckleberry pie recipe combines huckleberry jam with blueberries to give you the sweet-tart flavor of huckleberries, without having to

Parmesan Truffle Fries in Bowl

Parmesan Truffle Fries Recipe

Have I got the recipe for you! These French fries are the best that I have ever tasted! They are crispy on the outside, soft and fluffy on the inside! I am presenting this in my favorite way, as a Parmesan Truffle Fries Recipe, but

Hawaiian Chicken for Menu Plan

Menu Plan: August 3-7

Monday, August 3 Thai Steak Salad Peaches Tuesday, August 4 Chicken and White Bean Enchiladas Mexcian Potatoes Clementine Oranges Wednesday, August 5 Garlic Chicken Rigatoni Green Beans Italian Garden Salad Strawberries Thursday, August 6 Hawaiian Chicken Pineapple Quinoa “Fried Rice” Sliced mango Friday, August 7

finger steaks recipe

Idaho Finger Steaks Recipe

I am happy to share that this Idaho finger steaks recipe was a hit! Crispy and perfectly seasoned on the outside, tender and juicy on the inside. They were addicting little strips of goodness! Who knew finger steaks could be so good? Truth be told,

Plate of pulled pork fried rice and ohana green beans

Famous Food from Hawaii

Hawaii has a very diverse culture, which has resulted in it also having some very diverse food. The roots of Hawaiian cuisine stem from Polynesian voyagers in the 1700s, later adding in the influence of American, European, and Asian immigrants. When we considered our menu,

Wrapped Kalua Pork with Salt

Smoked Kalua Pork Recipe

Traditional Kalua pig is a whole pig that is cooked in the ground. Literally, they dig a giant hole and bury the pig! I don’t know about you, but that’s not something I was up for doing in my backyard. So when we had our

Macadamia Nut Fried Rice

Hawaiian Macadamia Fried Rice Recipe

This Hawaiian Macadamia Fried Rice is an easy side dish to whip up and the flavors are pleasing for the whole family! Adding in the macadamia nuts makes it feel special, and seems like you put a whole lot of time into it. Surprise! It’s

Eating fried chicken

Menu Plan: July 27-31

Monday, July 27 Fried Chicken Mashed Potatoes Green Beans Peaches Tuesday, July 28 Philly Cheesesteak Tacos Garlic Herb Cauliflower Rice Strawberries Wednesday, July 29 Italian Sheet Pan Supper Nectarines Thursday, July 30 Air Fryer Honey Sriracha Salmon Savory Coconut Rice Asparagus Pears Friday, July 31

Finished Honey Sriracha Salmon

Air Fryer Honey Sriracha Salmon Recipe

A couple of years ago I stumbled upon this baked honey sriracha salmon recipe by Creme de la Crumb. I call it “the fish recipe for people who don’t love fish.” My family doesn’t really like fish, but they will eat this recipe! And since

Georgia famous food

Famous Food from Georgia

Would it be cheesy to begin this post saying that I’ve got Georgia on my mind? Yes? Darn. How about, “I have Famous Food from Georgia” on my mind? That’s not good either? Well, then I will just jump straight into telling you about this

Peach cobbler close up

Bourbon Peach Cobbler Recipe

Bourbon peach cobbler reminds me of a cozy winter night balanced with the freshness and life of a warm summer day. There is something incredibly comforting about the warm spices and gooey brown sugar and bourbon sauce being combined with summer’s fresh peaches and vanilla

2 pieces of fried chicken

Buttermilk Fried Chicken Recipe

When we decided to have fried chicken for our Georgia state dinner, I’ll admit I was a little intimidated. I usually prepare “fried” chicken in the oven. It’s healthier that way, and I love anything that cooks without me having to stand over it. But

Coconut Rice

Savory Coconut Rice

We make coconut rice at least once a month. It is Cora’s favorite way to have rice, and I must admit, I’m a pretty big fan myself! There’s just something amazing about this creamy rice, with flavors of ginger and garlic, that make it hard

Cuban Sandwiches

Famous Food from Florida

Sunny Florida Florida: The land of beaches, and sun, and Disney World, and Cuban sandwiches, and key lime pie! Florida is well known as a tourist destination. But when we set off preparing for our Florida dinner I didn’t know much actual Florida history. Learning

Pork Carnitas

Menu Plan: July 13-17

Monday, July 13 Tequila Chicken Burgers Seasoned Potato Chips Watermelon Tuesday, July 14 Crispy Pork Carnitas Mexican Rice Strawberries Wednesday, July 15 One Pot Pasta with Ricotta Clouds Italian Garden Salad Garlic Bread Grapes Thursday, July 16 Summer Vegetable Curry Jasmine Rice Pears Friday, July

Summer Vegetable Curry

Summer Vegetable Curry

If you have followed my menu plans for any length of time at all you know that I love curry! It very well may be my favorite food ever! I love trying new ways of making curry so that I can enjoy some variety while

One Pot Pasta Side View

One Pot Pasta with Ricotta Clouds

Do you remember the 2013 trend of One Pot Pasta? I was mind-blown when I first tried it, loving the simplicity. Boiling pasta in water, with onions, garlic, and tomatoes, was an easy dinner! I wondered if I could create something similar, but with a

Famous Food from Delaware

Famous Food from Delaware

Our dinner of famous food from Delaware was almost like taking a trip back in time. As the first state in our nation, Delaware is rich in history. It has just 3 counties, the smallest number of any state, but these counties were established all

Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberries have been really delicious this season! So bright, sweet, and juicy. While we love to eat strawberries by themselves, I have been looking for recipes to utilize them as well. I don’t normally like strawberry shortcake, as the shortcake I have had has been

Slippery Dumplings

Slippery Dumplings

The Difference Between Southern Dumpling and Slippery Dumplings Growing up in the south I know all about chicken and dumplings. Truthfully, I never liked them because the biscuit-like dumpling is too wet on the outside and felt like I was eating raw dough. I had

Street tacos

Menu Plan: July 6-10

Monday, July 6 Air fryer chicken breast Baked potatoes Asparagus Watermelon Tuesday, July 7 Street Tacos with Fresh Pico De Gallo Mexican Salad Honeydew Melon Wednesday, July 8 Yummy Pasta Broccoli Strawberries Thursday, July 9 Chicken Tikka Masala Jasmine Rice Green Beans Raspberries Friday, July

Street Tacos with Fresh Pico De Gallo

Street Tacos with Fresh Pico De Gallo

Taco Tuesday is our favorite night of the week, and these Street Tacos with fresh pico de gallo are always a hit! It is so nice to cook a meal that the entire family loves, so this is on our regular rotation! A Flavorful Marinade

White Clam Pizza

Famous Food From Connecticut

In Search of the Best Pizza A friend of mine, who was raised in Connecticut, told me that Connecticut pizza is the best. She hasn’t been able to find pizza as good anywhere else. Challenge accepted! This week’s state dinner had me on a full-on

Snickerdoodle Cookie

The Actual Best Snickerdoodle Cookie

Have you ever surprised yourself by making the perfect recipe? That’s what happened to me when I made these Snickerdoodle cookies. I expected good. I mean, I love a Snickerdoodle cookie! But these cookies? They are ridiculously good! I took some to my mom and

Pork chops

Menu Plan: June 29-July 3

Monday, June 29 Pork Chops (I make without the apples, since we do fried apples as well) Mashed Potatoes Broccoli Fried Apples Tuesday, June 30 Chipotle-Lime Shrimp Tacos Cauliflower Fried Rice Mandarin Oranges Wednesday, July 1 Egg Scramble Sausage Bagels Cantaloupe Thursday, July 2 Sweet

Pueblo Slopper Colorado

Famous Food from Colorado

The Pueblo Chile vs. Hatch Chile Debate We started our search for famous food from Colorado with a virtual trip to Pueblo. Farmers in Pueblo have grown Mosco chile peppers since the 1800s, and eventual created the varietal called the Pueblo Popper chile. These chiles

Pork Green Chili

Pork Green Chili

When planning for our Colorado state dinner I scoured the internet for the best pork green chili recipes. None looked like exactly what I wanted. So I took a little bit from a number of different sites and came up with my own version. We

Sheet Pan Shrimp Boil

Menu Plan: June 22-26

Our meal plan for June 22-26 starts with a spicy shrimp boil, but this one has no mess! It’s all done in your oven on one pan! There are two nights of Mexican food, which is a win in my book! Creamy Parmesan rice that

Famous Food from California

What Famous Food From California Should We Choose? California has such a vast food culture, we spent quite a bit of time trying to decide our menu. Bay shrimp, California rolls, pho, avocado and bean sprout sandwiches. So many choices! We finally decided on fish

Rosemary Ranch Chicken

Menu Plan: June 15-19

We are making the most of seasonal fruits and vegetables this week! The strawberries and cherries have been great this year! Enjoy this week of colorful meals! Monday, June 15 Rosemary Ranch Kebabs Grilled Vegetables Brown Rice Black Cherries Tuesday, June 16 Taco Salad Grapes