SPICY Chicken Rigatoni

I made this for dinner a couple nights ago and it was incredible! Steven loves spicy food (he will put hot sauce on anything) so I was intrigued by this recipe.

I haven’t used red pepper before (besides sprinkling on pizza), but damn, those little flakes are spicy!

This dish is super flavorful and spicy. The peas add a little texture and the rigatoni cuts the spice just a bit so your tastebuds don’t totally explode. Pair it with a caesar salad and some wine and you have yourself a great meal!

I found this recipe on Pinterest, and it seems to have come from the resteraunt Buca di Beppo. I have never eaten there before, but their spicy chicken rigatoni is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!

Buca di Beppo’s Spicy Chicken Rigatoni

olive oil
1/2 tbs crushed red pepper
dash salt
dash black pepper
1 tbs chopped garlic
2 chicken breasts, sliced
3/4 cup Marinara sauce
1/2 cup Alfredo sauce
2 tsp butter
can of peas
box of Rigatoni pasta
toppings: parmesan cheese, crushed red pepper
Cook Rigatoni according to the package
In a pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add crushed red pepper, salt, black pepper and garlic and sauté. Add sliced chicken and coat in spices mixture
Add the Marinara and then the Alfredo and bring to a simmer. Cook until sauce thickens slightly and chicken is completely cooked. Take off from heat and add butter and peas to sauce.
Toss pasta and sauce together and ENJOY! 

Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Chili

Edit: Hello! If you found me via Pinterest, welcome! Let me know what you think of this recipe, I always love feedback! Hang out, stay awhile on my blog — I have a recipes tab, which I am adding to all the time. Thanks for stopping by! 

I am addicted to my crockpot. And I can’t stop.

Last night was our traditional MNF night and I was craving buffalo wings. Right now I am on a little bit of a health kick (they come and go…) and I didn’t have the ingredients to throw together Buffalo Chicken Poppers.

So with some guidance from a cooking blog, I took to the crockpot to make something hot, buffalo-y, easy, and crockpot-y.

It’s delicious. And super spicy! I highly, highly recommend you try this one! 

Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Chili

2 frozen chicken breasts

2 cans tomato sauce

1/2 bottle Frank’s Buffalo Sauce

1 can black beans

1 large sweet onion, chopped

1 can cream-style corn

1 cup salsa

2 jalapeños, chopped

Cook on low in crockpot 8-10 hours. 

Serve with Ritz Crackers, cheddar cheese, and sour cream.

I’m so excited to attack my leftovers tonight.

Random: But have you guys seen The Watch? We watched it last night and it was surprisingly hilarious! I loved it!


Buffalo Chicken Chili, Football, Widmer beers, and a stupid comedy. What more could you want from a Monday night?

PDX Fab Find: 442 Soccer Bar

Steven’s friend Matt took us here about a month ago for a Timbers game, and we have been obsessed ever since!

Seriously, 442 Soccer Bar has become one of my favorite hangouts in Portland. On the corner of SW Hawthorne & 18th, this bar rocks for a myriad of reasons

  • Soccer is on. ALL THE TIME
  • The beer tap list is great (and always changing)
  • Delicious Bosnian food (hello Ćevapi)
  • Awesome bartenders
  • The lovely & hilarious owner Mohammad

If any of these points sound appealing, you need to go! Steven and I have been back a handful of times and each time we are left satisfied and super happy. Even just last night we went for a quick dinner, a beer, and for some MLS playoff soccer. And it was divine.

Mohammad the owner is usually there and it’s hard to miss him. He’s a loud, boisterous  super nice guy with a thick Bosnian accent. He treats everyone like they are regulars (but trust me, there are a lot of regulars who love good beer and soccer!)

Mohammad refers to every woman as “nice lady,” which of course means they have a house pale ale brew from Lompoc caled… Nice Lady Ale. I’m not usually a pale ale kind of girl, but once he called me nice lady, I knew I had to try it. And I loved it! The boys (who are all self-proclaimed beer aficionados) are always happy with the tap selection. Basically, you can find anything you want. There are also game day specials — Timbers jello shots anyone?!

Also, you have to try a Ćevapi! Its basically really flavorful kebab on doughy and super addicting bread (lepina), with onions, red pepper sauce (ajvar), and a small amount of cream sauce (kaymak). It’s so delicious, I have to get it every time. Steven has gotten the Mediterranean chicken sandwich  which was amazing, and Katie got another sandwich which she said she enjoyed.

I can’t find a reason not to love 442 Soccer Bar. We have gotten to know some of the bartenders and they are just great to talk to. The food is good, the drinks are great, and our friends also love this place.

Let me know if you check it out! I have also heard a rumor that they show Blazers games…

Busy weekends are the best

I had two straight busy, busy days.

And one blissful do nothing day.

Friday I met Steven and Dannica at a sports bar to watch the Blazers game.

Steven was drinking Oakshire’s Ill-tempered Gnome. And this is his gnome face…

Adorable isn’t he?

Afterwards we met up with some friends at Kells 21st for our friends Bridget and Elysse’s birthday gathering. It was great to see friends/co-workers and to hang out at the awesome places on 21st.

(my face is SO SHINY!)

Saturday I started the day with a 6 mile run. And honestly, I just wasn’t feeling it. But I needed to get that long run in, so I just powered through. Thankfully it wasn’t raining and was slightly warm outside.

I really rocked it last week with running/training! From runs to elliptical to leg workouts to spinning, I worked out everyday but Sunday!

The rest of the afternoon was spent cleaning the apartment, half watching/listening to the movie Crazy, Stupid, Love, and cutting up vegetables for the upcoming week.

My life is thrilling, I know.

Dannica and I got together to get ready for our friend Trevor’s big masquerade party! He rented out a bar for his birthday and everyone was asked to where masks for the theme.

I felt like a super hero the entire night!

Sunday – my do nothing but relax day. I made myself a big breakfast, sat in my comfy chair, and watched the entire first season of the HBO show Girls.

I am so in love with this show! It’s my life. It’s so heartbreaking/hilarious/witty. The perfect show for a twenty something girl.

Steven came over, pried me away from my comfy chair. and made me dinner. Seriously, this guy is such a keeper!

Bacon & Ranch Cajun Baby Cheeseburgers

This week is going to be crazy hectic. But I am feeling prepared. Ready, set, go!

PS- I can’t believe the election is tomorrow! Ah!

The 2nd Annual RG+SQ Fall Date

As you might remember from last year, Steven and I like to do a little fall-themed date.

Last night was our little date night, complete with good food (recipes below!), cider, and pumpkin carving. My little downtown apartment smelled so wonderfully! I really like having themed dates, gives something new/different to a regular night.

I’m really proud of our pumpkins! I did the Timbers logo, while Steven made a dachshund. I forget how stressful craving pumpkins is. Intense concentration was needed (and I bet the ciders didn’t help). And no… we didn’t mean to match with our v-necks…

For dinner, I used my trusty crock pot to make Aunt Donna’s Chicken and Dumplings. The recipe is easy, delicious, and perfect for fall/winter (it also makes your house smell amazing!)

Aunt Donna’s Crockpot Chicken & Dumplings 

3 frozen chicken breasts

2 cans cream of chicken soup

2 cans chicken broth

1 diced onion

1 diced carrot

1 diced celery

1 can peas

garlic powder

salt and pepper

1 can biscuits

Put everything but the biscuits in the crockpot. Cook on low for 8-9 hours

Cut the biscuits and throw them in 1-2 hours before you eat.

I also made a quick batch of the easiest cookies ever. It’s only two ingredients  but they are delicious and perfect for fall. If you love pumpkin flavor, you will love these!

Two Ingredient Pumpkin cookies

1 box Spice Cake Mix

1 15 oz. can of pumpkin

(optional) cream cheese frosting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

Combine ingredients and drop batter on a greased cookie sheet

Bake 10-15 minutes

I cut each cookie in half and put some frosting to create a little sandwich! They are super delicious and can keep in a air-tight container for a couple days!

And ta-da! Our little fall date on a rainy Thursday night in Portland.

Side note: Dannica made this hilarious meme of me from another meme. Look at how terrifying my face is! 

Chicken Strips – the healthy way

I love chicken strips. Like LOVE them. But now that I have re-committed myself to saving money (and eating healthier), I can’t justify getting my favorite fried food.

However, thanks to the glory of the internet, I found this recipe that is super easy and super healthy for chicken strips!

Win, win in my book!

I have made these chicken strips a couple of times and they have been a major success. I’m planning on making these bad boys after my run after work.

Easy, simple, healthy, and delicious.

To keep it healthy, serve with a salad or sweet potato fries.

Healthy Cornflake Chicken Strips  

12 ounces skinless, boneless chicken-breast halves
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 cups cornflakes, finely crushed
Dash of black pepper and seasoning salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees . Cut chicken into strips. 

In a shallow dish, combine egg, honey, and mustard. In another dish, stir together cornflake crumbs and pepper.

Dip chicken strips into the egg mixture; then in cornflake mixture. Arrange chicken strips on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake about 12 minutes, or until outsides are golden and chicken is no longer pink.

Monday Night: Football & Food

Last night I had Steven and Dannica over for a little Monday Night Football & Food action. There is literally nothing better then coming home from work, having a couple beers, eating good food, and hanging out with two of your best friends.

And that’s exactly what we did last night! (and can I say, that my team won!!)

I think I might have perfected a great (and easy and cheap) Monday Night Football feast for a couple people.

Our feast included Buffalo Chicken Poppers with Avocado Blue Cheese dip, veggies & ranch, salt & pepper kettle chips, southwestern ranch salad, Red Velvet Brownie Bites with Cream Cheese Frosting, and Blue Moon Belgian White beer in beer steins. (go big or go home!)

You guys need to try these Buffalo Chicken Poppers and the Red Velvet Brownie Bites!

I found this awesome recipe for Buffalo Chicken Poppers from one of my favorite blogs Let Them Eat Cake. And what better time to make them then for Monday Night Football! They are quick and easy to make. I whipped them out after work and they were so so delicious. I am going to make them all the time now!

Perfect amount of buffalo heat, which then mixes well with the cream cheese and avocado blue cheese dip!

Buffalo Chicken Poppers with Avocado Blue Cheese dip

Buffalo Chicken Poppers:

8 oz 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened

1 packet ranch dip mix, divided in half

2 large chicken breast, cut into small pieces

1 jar buffalo wing sauce (I used Frank’s Buffalo Sauce)

2, 8-count tube reduced fat crescent rolls

Preheat oven according to crescent roll package directions.

Mix together cream cheese and half the ranch dip mix in a small bowl.

Season chicken with remaining half of the ranch dip mix and cook in a non-stick sprayed skillet. Toss with buffalo wing sauce until coated, and set aside to cool.

Lay crescent rolls out flat and place 1 spoonful cream cheese mix in the center and then a spoonful of chicken.

(warning, this is messy!)

Bring all three sides of the crescent roll triangle to the top, then pinch all three seams to seal.

Place on a baking sheet, and bake according to the crescent roll instructions.

Then enjoy!

Avocado Blue Cheese Dip:

1 avocado

1/2 cup blue cheese dressing

Mix together!

While I took care of the dinner, Dannica was in charge of dessert. She made these delicious Red Velvet Brownie Bites from Tasty Kitchen, which were so incredible. I couldn’t stop eating them…

She made the brownies bites with her family’s top secret cream cheese frosting recipe. So you guys are going to have to settle for another recipe… family traditions are sometimes sacred. Even when it comes to frosting!

Red Velvet Brownie Bites with Cream Cheese Frosting

Red Velvet Brownie Bites:

½ cups Unsalted Butter, Diced

3 ounces, weight Bittersweet Chocolate, Chopped

1-½ cup Sugar

3 whole Large Eggs

1 teaspoon Vanilla

¼ teaspoons Salt

1 ounce, fluid Liquid Red Food Coloring

1 cup All-purpose Flour

½ teaspoons Baking Powder

Preheat oven to 325° F. Fold a 16″ long piece of foil and place in a 9″x9″ metal baking pan, leaving overhang on 2 sides. Repeat with another sheet of foil the same size in the opposite direction, lining the pan completely. Spray foil with nonstick spray.

Stir butter and chocolate in a heavy large saucepan over very low heat until chocolate is melted. Remove from heat and whisk in sugar, then eggs, 1 at a time.

Stir in vanilla, salt, and food coloring. Sift flour and baking powder over the mixture and stir to blend well. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan.

Bake brownies 30 to 35 minutes and until puffed and dry-looking and a tester inserted into the center comes out with some batter attached. Cool completely in the pan on rack.

Using the foil as an aid, lift brownies from the pan and place on a cutting board. Peel foil down away from the sides of brownies.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

8 ounces, weight Cream Cheese, At Room Temperature

4 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, At Room Temperature

1 teaspoon Vanilla

1-½ cup Sifted Powdered Sugar

Beat together the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and mix a bit to incorporate. Then add the sifted powdered sugar and beat to combine.

Spread evenly over brownie bites.