joyeux cuisine

a blog about good food, family, friends, and life.

chicken and noodle casserole.

Ever since I got married I’ve been trying to figure out good recipes for two people. Most of the recipes out there are for families of four or more. So we usually have leftovers forever. And I have never been a big fan of leftovers. Sorry, Mom.

That’s where casseroles come in. I’ve found that it’s nice to not have leftovers, but also to make a freezer meal at the same time. Almost every recipe calling for a 9×13 pan can be put into two 9×9 square pans instead. I like to make two pans and freeze one. It makes life a lot easier. I like easy life, even if it’s only for a night.


This casserole is perfect for anytime you’re wishing for cold winter months. That would be today for me, but I know I’ll be dreaming of summer months in December. It’s a trade off in the Midwest. We deal with it.

I love pasta and I love chicken. So this is a good casserole to serve that love. You know what else I love? Crushed buttery round crackers mixed with more butter and browned to perfection on top of…well…anything really.


This casserole calls for cooked chicken cut into pieces. I like to boil a chicken breast in chicken stock with a few seasonings, but to make it even easier you can buy a rotisserie chicken and cut that into pieces. Whatever you please will be wonderful. Cook some egg noodles, throw everything into a bowl, stir it all together, call it a day.


Happy cooking, friends!

Chicken and Noodle Casserole
makes 1 9×9 pan

1 cup chicken, cooked and chopped
8 ounces egg noodles, cooked according to directions
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 cup sour cream
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 tube crushed buttery-round crackers
1 and 1/2 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, grease a 9×9 square pan and set aside. Combine the chicken, noodles, cream of chicken soup, sour cream, and cheese in a large bowl. Mix until everything is coated in soup and sour cream. Pour into the 9×9 pan. Mix the crushed crackers and melted butter until the mixture is crumbly. Cover the top of the chicken and noodles with crackers.
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
This can also be frozen: Do all the steps until baking. Cover well with a lid or plastic wrap and foil. Freeze. Thaw completely before baking.
Leftovers should be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.

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baked double chocolate donuts.

Every Saturday morning for the last few months I make my husband some donuts. It started as the biscuits in a can donuts that you fry up and cover in sugar. Then I turned into baked donuts after I found a recipe for apple cider donuts and had to buy a donut pan. We haven’t looked back since.

For a long time with donuts I would find a recipe somewhere and make that, decided whether or not Zack liked it and then do a different recipe the next Saturday until I found one he liked. That got a little tedious so I eventually settled one what texture was good and what icing was good. My dear husband doesn’t love frositing because they are usually way too sweet. This glaze is perfect. (To be honest, I didn’t really even measure.) And I just got conformation that these are the best donuts I have ever made. He’s so nice to me.


Someday I’m going to have to get another donut pan. Six spots just isn’t enough sometimes. Especially when you’ve got a donut loving husband.

This batter is pretty much a cake batter that you make into donuts. Which makes the donuts really moist and dense. I like a dense donut. It comes together like a muffin batter; you mix the dry together, you mix the wet together, you mix the wet into the dry. Easy as donuts.


Happy cooking, friends!

Baked Double Chocolate Donuts
recipe from use real butter
makes about 14 donuts

for the donuts:
2 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk*
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

for the glaze:
1 and 1/4 cup powdered sugar
3 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
4-5 Tablespoons milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

To make the donuts:
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Spray donut pans with non-stick spray and set aside. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. In a medium bowl whisk together the buttermilk, brown sugar, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla. Dump the wet ingredients onto the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula until well combined and most of the clumps are gone. Try not to stir too long or the donuts will be too gummy and tough. Pour the batter into a large gallon sized plastic bag and cut the tip off. Pipe the batter into the prepared donut pan about 2/3 full. Bake for 10-11 minutes or until the tops of the donuts spring back when poked. Cool in the pan for a few minutes and then move to a cooling rack with wax paper underneath.

To make the glaze:
In a small bowl whisk together the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, salt and vanilla extract. Add the milk and whisk until the glaze is loose. Dip the donuts into the glaze and place back on the the cooling rack. Add sprinkles immediately after glazing or they’ll just bounce off the hardened glaze. (Don’t be like me. I did that.)

You can either leave the glaze to set or eat right away.
Store leftover donuts in an airtight container and they’ll keep for about two days.

*If you don’t have any buttermilk, fear not! Add one tablespoon of either vinegar or lemon juice to a 1 cup measuring cup. Add enough milk to equal one cup and stir gently. Let sit for 5 minutes to let the milk curdle slightly.

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root beer float fudge.

Happy 4th of July, everyone!

I hope your three day weekend (or regular two day for some of us) has gotten off to a fantastic start! I thought I’d give you all a little recipe perfect for a party or barbecue this weekend. This fudge recipe is pretty easy and is very similar to the birthday cake fudge I made many moons ago. Also, it’s VERY sweet! You’ve been warned.

photo 2

This week was the last week for a couple guys at work so we had a food day and everyone could bring in different foods to share with everyone else. I use this opportunity to stuff everyone with sugar. And I mean really. Once I brought cupcakes, the next time brownies, and this time fudge. Crazy good, wonderfully sugary, super tasty fudge.

The key to this fudge is the root beer concentrate. Everyone at work flipped out about and said it tasted exactly like a root beer float. You can almost taste the carbonation. I had many people come up to me and ask for the recipe or say the fudge tasted like a root beer float. It’s safe to say my ego grew a little bit. But it’s all thanks to this fudge. So please have a great weekend celebrating our great country.

photo 1

Happy cooking, friends!

Root Beer Float Fudge
makes approximately 40 pieces
recipe from taste of home

3 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks)
5 ounce can evaporated milk
12 ounce bag white chocolate chips
7 ounce jar marshmallow fluff
2 teaspoons root beer float concentrate
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Line a 9×9 square pan with aluminum foil and spray generously with non-stick spray.
In a medium sized pot combine the sugar, butter, and evaporated milk. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, gently stirring constantly. This will take about 5-6 minutes. Once the mixture comes to a boil, stir constantly for four minutes. After the four minutes are up remove the pan from the heat and stir in the white chocolate and marshmallow fluff. After this point you need to work really quickly because the fudge will set up pretty quickly. Pour a generous 1/3 of the mixture into a small bowl. Stir the vanilla extract into the smaller portion and stir the root beer float concentrate into the larger portion. Pour the root beer fudge into the prepared pan and spread into a flat layer. Pour the vanilla fudge on top of the root beer fudge and spread over the top.
Store in the fridge until fudge is set. Cut into 1 inch pieces and serve.
Fudge can be stored in the fridge or at room temperature, well wrapped both places.

2 Comments »

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