Archive for Pork

Meatball Sliders

Meatball Sliders

I was flipping through the January 2015 edition of Southern Living magazine recently and came across this recipe for Meatball Sliders. Can I just say, “AH-MAZING!” I made them on a Friday night when I knew the kids were having friends over since the recipes makes a lot of meatballs. I actually prepared the meatballs the night before and put them in the refrigerator. When I got home Friday afternoon after a busy day, I pulled out the meatballs to bring them to room temperature before putting them in the sauce. This could not have been more easy and everyone LOVED them! Note: I actually tried a meatball by itself and even though I am not a meatball expert, it was pretty awesome! 

Level of Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: Prep Time – 30min; Cook Time – 10 hours


2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 large fresh basil sprigs
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 (28-oz.) cans whole tomatoes, crushed
5 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 pound ground chuck
1 pound ground pork
1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1/4 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup loosely packed chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
24 slider buns or dinner rolls, split and lightly toasted
12 (1-oz.) provolone cheese slices, halved
Garnish: fresh basil leaves

Special Equipment and Other Items Needed:

Crock Pot

Preparing Meatball Sliders:

1. Stir together first 6 ingredients in a 7-qt. slow cooker; stir in 2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Cover and cook on LOW 8 hours. 

2. Meanwhile, place ground chuck and ground pork in a large bowl. Add next 6 ingredients and remaining 1 Tbsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper; mix gently just until blended. Gently shape mixture into 24 meatballs. (Do not pack.) Place meatballs in a single layer on a baking sheet; cover well, and chill until ready to use.

3. Let meatballs stand at room temperature 20 minutes. Carefully submerge meatballs in tomato mixture in slow cooker. Cover and cook on HIGH 1 hour or until meatballs are done, stirring after 30 minutes. (I actually cooked my meatballs about 90 minutes).

4. Preheat broiler with oven rack 7 inches from heat. Arrange bottom halves of 12 buns in a single layer on each of 2 baking sheets. Place 1 meatball on each bun;

Meatball Sliders

top with sauce and 1 halved provolone cheese slice. Repeat with remaining buns, meatballs, and cheese.

Meatball Sliders

5. Broil sliders, 1 baking sheet at a time, 2 to 3 minutes or until cheese melts. Top with top halves of buns.

Meatball Sliders

Meal Ideas:

Serve with a salad and call it a day!

Easy Stuffed Pork Chops

Easy Stuffed Pork Chops

I was going though some meat that I had in my freezer and saw some thick pork chops…perfect for stuffing!  I decided to pull them out, but had no idea how I was going to prepare them. I knew I didn’t want a bread stuffing and didn’t have a long time to prepare them since it was an extra busy weeknight. I settled on a mixtures of feta cheese and pesto with an all purpose seasoning on the outside. These easy stuffed pork chops were pretty awesome, especially for throwing it all together on a whim! 

Level of Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: Prep Time – 5 min; Cook Time – 45 minutes

Ingredients for 3:

1 T. olive oil

1 T. butter

Thick cut pork chops (1 per person)

2 T. prepared pesto

1/4 c. feta cheese

Slavo Salt (or your favorite all seasoning spice blend)

Preparing Easy Stuffed Pork Chops:

Preheat oven to 350 Degrees. In a small mixing bowl, mix the pesto with feta cheese. Cut a slit in the center of the pork chop, making sure you don’t cut all the way though. You just want to make a “pocket”.  Gently put the pesto mixture into the slit of the pork chop.

Easy Stuffed Pork Chops

Secure with a toothpick. Repeat with remaining pork chops. Season both sides with desired amount of Slavo Salt. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat with butter and olive oil.

Easy Stuffed Pork Chops

Brown the pork chops for 5 minutes, turning once. 

Easy Stuffed Pork Chops        

Place pork chops in oven safe dish. Pour juices from the skillet over the pork chops. Cook for 30 minutes, or until no longer pink. Serve hot!

Easy Stuffed Pork Chops

Meal Ideas:

I served this with brown rice and steamed broccoli. Healthy AND delicious!


Pork Tenderloin with Prosciutto

Pork Tenderloin with Prosciutto and Rosemary

Roasts and “elegant looking” meals don’t always have to be reserved for the weekends when you have more time to cook. I made this pork tenderloin with prosciutto on a school/work night last week for my family and it was a huge success. I had all of the ingredients on hand, it took virtually no time to prepare, and my family loved it. What more can you ask for? 

Level of Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: Prep Time – 10 min; Cook Time – 35-40 min


1 pork tenderloin

5 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed plus 1 head of garlic, separated into individual cloves

1 1/2 T. fresh rosemary, finely chopped plus 5 rosemary springs

1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

2 T. Olive Oil, divided

6 slices of prosciutto (with the skin on)

fresh cracked pepper

Preparing Pork Tenderloin with Prosciutto:

Preheat oven to 425 Degrees. Mix crushed garlic, chopped rosemary, salt and 1 T. olive oil together in a small bowl.

Pork Tenderloin with Prosciutto and Rosemary

Rub garlic mixture over tenderloin and season with fresh cracked pepper. Wrap prosciutto strips around the pork, seam side down. Arrange rosemary sprigs on bottom of baking dish.

Pork Tenderloin with Prosciutto and Rosemary

Place the prosciutto wrapped pork tenderloin on top of rosemary sprigs. Arrange garlic cloves around the pork.

Pork Tenderloin with Prosciutto and Rosemary

Drizzle with remaining 1 T. of oil. Cook for 40-45 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 145 Degrees. Let rest at least 10 minutes before slicing.

Pork Tenderloin with Prosciutto and Bacon


Grilled Main Courses

Grilled chicken

Grilled main courses used to be something that I had only on the weekends when my husband was home to cook them. I was tired of always cleaning the kitchen after using the stove or oven to prepare dinner so I decided to “man up” and learn how to grill. I will say that it was one of the best things that I ever did in my cooking adventures. Not only is there less mess in the kitchen (I think I’ve said that lots this week), but grilled meat is typically healthier since there is less oil or butter used! For those you who have never grilled…give it a try. Just once!! It could change the way you eat and cook forever!!!


Bacon Wrapped Chicken Thighs

Mustard Grilled Chicken

Grilled Chicken Wrapped in Bacon and Rosemary

Beer Can Chicken

Ranch Grilled Chicken

Grilled Chicken in Garlic and White Wine Sauce

Grilled Chicken with Tzatziki Sauce 


Pork Tenderloin

Honey Garlic Pork Chops

Bone in BBQ Pork Chops


Pork Chops with Brown Sugar Glaze


Beef Tenderloin

Blackened Steak Salad

Flank Steak with Lime, Honey and Garlic

Gourmet Burger Bar

Tri Tip Steak

Filet Mignon Stuffed with Spinach and Manchego


Spicy Grilled Shrimp



Lamb Chops with Garlic and Rosemary

Turkey Breast with Garlic and Lemon








Stuffed Pork Loin Wrapped in Prosciutto

Stuffed Pork Loin Wrapped in Prosciutto

I made this Stuffed Pork Loin Wrapped in Prosciutto for Cheesefest. In a word…AMAZING!  The pan juices that I poured on top were fantastic! The preparation was a little more labor intensive than the dishes I usually make (remember…I’m not Melissa), but it was well worth it for sure! I would do again in a heartbeat for any “big event” or holiday!! Note: This recipe was adapted from one I saw on

Level of Difficulty: Moderate
Time Required: Prep Time – 10 min; Cook Time – 1 1/4 hours; Rest Time – 20 min.


2 1/2 pound pork loin

2/3 c. panko breadcrumbs

1/3 c. shredded fontina cheese

3 cloves crushed garlic

1 T. fresh sage, chopped

4 slices prosciutto

Salt and Pepper

Preparing Stuffed Pork Loin Wrapped in Prosciutto:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, mix together breadcrumbs, cheese, garlic and sage. Stand pork loin on one end of cutting board. Using a sharp, thin blade knife, make a cut down the center and through the other side. Use your index finger to make the hole a bit larger for stuffing. Carefully pack the breadcrumb mixture into the hole from both ends.

Stuffed Pork Loin Wrapped in Prosciutto

Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Arrange the prosciutto slices on top of the pork loin and place in shallow roasting pan. 

Stuffed Pork Loin Wrapped in Prosciutto

Roast for 1 to 1 1/4 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 150 Degrees. Let sit for 20 minutes before slicing. Arrange on a platter and pour the pan juices over the pork. Serve. 

Stuffed Pork Loin Wrapped in Prosciutto

Important Tips:

When you are making the slit, take your time. You don’t want it to wide, but you also don’t want it too small. 

I was never a Beavis and Butthead fan but I can so hear them in my head as you give these instructions on how to stuff the pork loin. ~Melissa 

Oh I was asked on Saturday night to give a demonstration. Things got a little nutty when…..Never mind. We are a family friend blog. ~Densie

Pork Loin Roast with Mango and Tomato Chutney

moist bone in pork loin roast with chutney

I’ve made a lot of pork loin roasts in my day and I have mixed results on how tender and juicy they turn out. I know that cooking things with the bones still in helps keep things juicy so I grabbed a nice 8 rib bone in pork loin roast at the grocery and brought it home. Now, how to make this pork roast moist, juicy, tender and delicious?!

I think I found it! I think my troubles of sometimes moist and sometimes not so moist are over! Hallelujah! See, I’ve tried a lot of different methods: searing it first, roasting at high temperature, baking at 350, grilling, and combinations of all the above. but, this was the BEST bone in pork loin roast I have ever made and I’m not sure why I’d ever do anything else!

Level of Difficulty: Moderate
Time Required:Prep Time – 45min; Cook Time – 2 hours

Ingredients for pork loin roast with mango and tomato chutney:

1 bone in pork loin roast (mine was 8 bones)

Coarse Kosher Salt

Fresh cracked black pepper

Country Style Dijon Mustard

6 cloves garlic, minced

Mango and Tomato Chutney

2 cups mango, diced

2 cups tomatoes, diced

2 green chilis, diced (how to cut a pepper), I used jalepenos because I’ve got so many right now

1/2 cup sugar

3T salt

2t mustard seeds

2t cayenne (I made this with a little heat but you can add less (or more) to suit your pallet)

2T oil 

Special Equipment and Other Items Needed:

Roasting pan

How to make juicy pork loin roast:

Let the pork loin roast come to room temperature for about 30 minutes to an hour.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Prepare pork loin roast by rubbing all over generously with salt, pepper, garlic and Dijon mustard. Top, bottom and sides.

Cook in oven at 400 degrees on just above middle rack for 45 minutes. It should be getting some nice brown parts on top.

how to make juicy pork loin roast

While in the oven, make the chutney. Here is the recipe for the chutney but the only thing I did different was let it cook down longer so not quite as chunky. Most of the tomatoes had broken down. If you cook it while the roast cooks, it should be perfect.

Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Cover pork loin roast in chutney (you will probably have some chutney to reserve which I used to warm up my leftovers the next day) and cook for another hour to hour and 15 minutes internal temperature is 150 degrees.

moist bone in pork loin roast with chutney

Remove from oven and let rest for 15 minutes while you finish your last minute things. When prepared to serve, you can either serve full bone-in pork loin chops by cutting the pork loin with ribs in tact or you can remove the ribs and cut the meat in whatever sizes you want.

pork loin roast with mango and tomato chutney

Because I have kids to serve too, I chose the latter. Remove the ribs by slicing as close to the bones as possible all the way down. Then you can slice the pork loin into thin slices. I enjoyed eating the ribs later!

Top with the juices from the pan (which if too thick, add some chicken stock and simmer, scraping up the bits on the bottom) and serve. You will not be disappointed!!! I promise. I almost didn’t call everyone to dinner and just ate the full thing by myself. SOOOO good.

bone in pork loin roast with mango and tomato chutney

Important Tips:

The oven! 450 degrees for 45 minutes and 325 degrees until done. This was perfection for moistness. Now, if you do a pork loin roast without the bones, that will be different. I’d try 20 minutes at 450 degrees (or until brown on top) and then go to 325 degrees which will be a lot shorter than an hour since it doesn’t have bones.


You could use different flavors in the chutney. Apples, peaches, and onions all come to mind as well as the mangoes, tomatoes and peppers. Pick two or three and try it! Just don’t vary the method in the oven.

Meal Ideas:

I served this with spinach pie and brown rice.

Got Leftovers?:

For leftovers, I heat the sauce and not the meat. Then let the thinly sliced meat soak in the sauce for a minute. Reheating the meat will just cook it and take out all of the moistness.

Stuffed Pork Chops with Blue Cheese and Bacon

Stuffed pork chops

Don’t let the words “Stuffed Pork Chops” scare you into thinking that they are hard to make. This recipe for Stuffed Pork Chops with Blue Cheese and Bacon is super easy. If you already have the bacon cooked, it takes virtually no time to prepare, but looks like you’ve spent hours laboring over such a delicious dish! 

Level of Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: Prep Time – 10 min (40 min. if you need to cook the bacon); Cook Time – 20 min. 


4 thick cut boneless pork chops

4 oz. blue cheese

4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (Applewood Smoked is the best, but any will do)

1 tsp. garlic powder

salt and pepper to taste

Preparing Stuffed Pork Chops with Blue Cheese and Bacon:

Preheat oven to 325 Degrees. Spray a baking dish with your favorite cooking spray. In a small bowl, mix together blue cheese and bacon. Set aside. Cut a pocket into each pork chop. You want to leave about 1/4 inch on each side and about a 1/4 inch at the back. Stuff each pork chop with blue cheese mixture.

Stuffed pork chops

Secure with a toothpick, if necessary. Sprinkle the outside of each pork chop with 1/4 tsp. of garlic power and salt and pepper to taste, keeping in mind that both the blue cheese and bacon are salty.

Stuffed pork chops

Place chops in baking dish and bake for 20 minutes, or until desired doneness. 

Stuffed pork chops