red pepper flakes

Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup

Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons

Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup

It is cold here, really, really cold.  This tomato spinach soup made in the Instant Pot is a good way to help warm you up. I saw these little grilled cheese croutons on Food Network one day and decided I had to try that.  Just make a regular grilled cheese and cut into cute little cubes.  I love grilled cheese sandwiches, and I like to make lots of different variations, see my Pepper Jack Grilled Cheese recipe when you are in the mood to experiment.  To go with tomato soup, I stuck to the basic white bread and American cheese for this sandwich.

Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup

 

Saute the onions, then add everything except the milk and spinach. Set the cooking time for 15 minutes on high pressure.  When the pressure is reached and the 15 minutes of cooking time has elapsed, let the pressure release naturally for about 10 minutes.  Release any remaining pressure by turning the nozzle to release.

 

 

Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup

 

Add the 5 ounce can of evaporated milk to the tomatoes, then stir to incorporate. Gently stir in the spinach.  Make sure the soup is heated through before serving.

 

Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup

I enjoy eating comforting soup in the winter, but I am certainly ready for some spring weather!

Here’s a few items (or very similar) that were used in making this Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup:

 

Disclosure:  Tina’s Tastings does make a few pennies on any purchase made from the Amazon.com affiliate links.

 

Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup
Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup
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Servings Prep Time
6 servings 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 10 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 10 minutes
Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup
Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup
Yum
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 10 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 servings 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
20 minutes 10 minutes
Ingredients
Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup
Grilled Cheese Croutons
Servings: servings
Instructions
Instant Pot Tomato Spinach Soup
  1. Gather and Prep all of your ingredients. Dice Onion and grate your carrot.
  2. Turn your Instant Pot on the Saute mode and add olive oil. When it is hot, add the onion and the carrot and saute for a couple of minutes or until softened, stirring often. Add garlic and saute for another minute or less.
  3. Add tomatoes, broth, basil, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes into the Instant Pot. Turn off Saute mode. Secure lid and turn the nozzle to Sealing, and set High Pressure Cooking to 15 minutes. After pressure is reached, the 15 minute cook time will begin to count down.
  4. Once 15 minute cooking time has elapsed, let pressure release naturally for about 10 minutes, then turn nozzle to Venting to release any additional pressure. (During the 10 minute time that the pressure is releasing, make your grilled cheese sandwiches)
  5. Remove lid after pressure has completely released. Carefully stir in the evaporated milk, then the spinach. Let soup completely heat thru on the warm setting before spooning into bowls.
Grilled Cheese Croutons
  1. Spread a thin layer of butter on each slice of bread. Place butter side of bread down in a large non-stick skillet. Add cheese on top of bread and cover with additional slice of bread, butter side up. Heat skillet to medium. Let grilled cheese cook slowly to achieve a golden brown color on each side. When both sides are cooked to perfection and cheese is melted, remove to let cool slightly.
  2. When cooled slightly, cut the grilled cheese sandwich into small cubes and serve on top of soup.
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Creamy Pesto Linguine

Creamy Pesto Linguine

Creamy Pesto Linguine

If you have followed my blog for very long, you know I LOVE pasta!!  This new recipe is sure to please if you like pasta too.

Creamy Pesto Linguine

I don’t usually keep heavy cream in my refrigerator, but when I make something that calls for heavy cream and have some left, this is my go to dish.  All I need are a few pantry staples to go with the heavy cream and lunch (or dinner) is served.  Pesto is a great ingredient, it adds a lot of flavor.  I like to make my own pesto, but I try to always keep a jar of pesto in the pantry for adding to dishes at the last minute.

Creamy Pesto Linguine

This Creamy Pesto Linguine is quick and easy and absolutely heavenly.  If you are in need of something comforting but quick, you have got to give this a try.  If you have some extra veggies in the refrigerator like spinach or broccoli you could always throw them in too.  Shrimp would also be great with this pasta, I think I will try it with shrimp next time.

Here’s a few items (or very similar) that were used in making this Creamy Pesto Linguine:

Disclosure:  Tina’s Tastings does make a few pennies on any purchase made from the Amazon.com affiliate links.
Creamy Pesto Linguine
Creamy Pesto Linguine
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Servings
1 person
Cook Time
10 minutes
Servings
1 person
Cook Time
10 minutes
Creamy Pesto Linguine
Creamy Pesto Linguine
Yum
Print Recipe
Servings
1 person
Cook Time
10 minutes
Servings
1 person
Cook Time
10 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: person
Instructions
  1. Prepare Linguine according to package directions. 2 ounces is supposed to be 1 serving, but you may want a little more if this is your main dish. Save 1/3 cup of the pasta water before draining.
  2. While pasta is cooking, heat heavy cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until hot, but don't let it boil.
  3. Add pesto sauce, red pepper flakes, black pepper and salt to the heavy cream. Reduce heat and cook for a couple of minutes. Stir in half of the Parmesan cheese until melted.
  4. Add sauce and about 1/4 cup of the pasta water to the drained linguine and mix well. Add remaining pasta water if sauce is too thick.
  5. Top linguine with additional Parmesan cheese.
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Spinach Orzo Salad

Spinach Orzo Salad

Spinach Orzo Salad

What could possibly make a salad better than adding a little pasta??  If you love pasta and like salads, this recipe is for you. This salad is great just after you make it, the orzo will warm most of the ingredients up just a little.  It is also great as leftovers the next day, straight from the refrigerator.  I took my leftovers to work the next day for my lunch, and it was delicious!

Spinach Orzo Salad

Just layer all of the ingredients on top of the spinach and mix together.  The chickpeas and the chicken provides you with plenty of protein.  Feta cheese gives the salad lots of tang and the sun-dried tomatoes add some tang along with just the right amount of sweetness.  The dressing gives the salad plenty of acidity and takes the flavor level up a notch.  Spinach Orzo Salad

All of the ingredients of this salad mixed together will give you a mouth full of flavor in every bite. This salad is very easy to put together, any skill level of cook can do this, and I know you will be satisfied with these results!

Here’s a few items (or very similar) that were used in making this Spinach Orzo Salad:

Disclosure:  Tina’s Tastings does make a few pennies on any purchase made from the Amazon.com affiliate links.

 

Spinach Orzo Salad
Spinach Orzo Salad
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Servings Prep Time
2 people 5 minutes
Cook Time
8-10 mintutes
Servings Prep Time
2 people 5 minutes
Cook Time
8-10 mintutes
Spinach Orzo Salad
Spinach Orzo Salad
Yum
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2 people 5 minutes
Cook Time
8-10 mintutes
Servings Prep Time
2 people 5 minutes
Cook Time
8-10 mintutes
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Cook orzo pasta as directed on package.
  2. While orzo is cooking, mix the dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, garlic flakes, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes in a salad dressing shaker (or jar with lid) and shake until completely combined.
  3. Place spinach in a large bowl. Add sun-dried tomatoes, chickpeas, chicken, feta and cooked orzo on top of spinach. Drizzle the dressing over everything and toss just until mixed. Enjoy immediately or refrigerate and enjoy later.
Recipe Notes

**If you use sun-dried tomatoes that are not packed in oil, you might need to add a tablespoon of oil to the dressing, to obtain the same moisture level results.

** leftover chicken or turkey will work great for this recipe, or rotisserie chicken is always a great option.

**you can use fresh garlic or garlic powder if desired, just adjust a little more or less to account for the difference in potency of the garlic.

 

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Homemade Italian Seasoning

Homemade Italian SeasoningHomemade Italian Seasoning

Italian Seasoning is by far my favorite seasoning blend, so I figured why not make my own.  There are a lot of good Italian Seasoning blends that you can buy.  I took the best of all the Italian Seasonings that I have bought over the years and came up with my own mixture. It took me a while, and several tries but my final result is terrific!

Homemade Italian Seasoning

I recently made an order from my favorite spice company, Whole Spice.  Here is just a few of the herbs and spices that I ordered that will go in my Homemade Italian Seasoning. Red Pepper Flakes are a must for my perfect blend.

Homemade Italian Seasoning

Mix with a good olive oil and dip a big chunk of bread, YUM!  This is a great way to enjoy this Italian Seasoning blend.  One of my favorite Italian restaurants, Ricatoni’s, serves their own seasoning blend with fresh warm bread. That is always a terrific start to a wonderful meal. Now I can have my own version at home any time I want, once I find the perfect bread recipe it will be complete.

Here’s a few items (or very similar) that were used in making this Homemade Italian Seasoning:

Disclosure:  Tina’s Tastings does make a few pennies on any purchase made from the Amazon.com affiliate links.

 

Homemade Italian Seasoning
Homemade Italian Seasoning
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Servings Prep Time
2 cups (approx) 10 minutes
Servings Prep Time
2 cups (approx) 10 minutes
Homemade Italian Seasoning
Homemade Italian Seasoning
Yum
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2 cups (approx) 10 minutes
Servings Prep Time
2 cups (approx) 10 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: cups (approx)
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients to a glass jar with lid and shake to mix thoroughly.
  2. Store in a cool dry place for at least several months. You can also divide into several small containers and share with family and friends. Use for any recipe that calls for Italian Seasoning or serve with olive oil for a superb bread dip.
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Easy Tomato Sauce

Easy Tomato Sauce

Easy Tomato Sauce

This is a super easy, super versatile tomato sauce.  The sauce is a ruby-red color, it’s thick and pulpy in texture and tastes delicious!  My son went to Italy with a college class last year.  After they got back, his professor had the students over to her house and cooked this sauce.  My son brought me the recipe since he knew I would love it.  I like a little heat, so I did add some red pepper flakes to the original recipe.

Easy Tomato Sauce

Don’t get me wrong, I use jarred tomato sauce all the time, but when I have time to make this great sauce, it’s well worth it.  Use this Mix ‘N Chop from Pampered Chef to easily break up the tomatoes. Get all of the ingredients in the pot, then just let it simmer.  It does need to simmer for at least an hour, so it’s something I do on a weekend when I have plenty of time.

Easy Tomato Sauce

Using good quality ingredients in this sauce will give you great results.  I opted for dried basil and parsley since I just got a shipment of herbs and spices from Whole Spice, but you can certainly use fresh if you have those available.

Easy Tomato Sauce

What could be more perfect than a simple pasta meal?  Next time I think I will drag that pasta maker out of the cabinet and make homemade pasta to go with this sauce.

Here’s a few items (or very similar) that were used in making this recipe:

Disclosure:  Tina’s Tastings does make a few pennies on any purchase made from the Amazon.com affiliate links.

 

Easy Tomato Sauce
Easy Tomato Sauce
Yum
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Servings Prep Time
8 people 5 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Servings Prep Time
8 people 5 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Easy Tomato Sauce
Easy Tomato Sauce
Yum
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 people 5 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Servings Prep Time
8 people 5 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in large dutch oven and saute onion until it begins to brown, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and saute about another 30 seconds, stirring well.
  2. Add tomatoes**, tomato paste, basil, parsley, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, mix well and bring to a boil.
  3. Cover and simmer slowly for at least 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
Recipe Notes

** you can break up tomatoes with your hands before you put them in the pot, or after you get them in the pot, you can use the back of a spoon or this Mix 'N Chop.

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