Easy Recipes

Grill Crashers Giveaway!

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 Disclosure: This post was sponsored by our friends at the National Pork Board to inspire new delicious pork recipes.

porkcollage3

Yesterday I shared our recent Grill Crashers party Susanne and I planned to kick off the summer season and surprise our guests with a flavorful new pork chop recipe – Grilled Pork Chops with Chimichurri Sauce.

The pork chops were a hit and so easy to make for a party!  Grilling pork chops are a great way to play around with new flavors and delight guests with a moist, delicious, lean protein as the star of the meal.

Today we want to give YOU the opportunity to host your own Grill Crashers party and BBQ pork this season with a pork giveaway! One lucky winner will receive a $75 Kroger Gift card and a brand new digital meat thermometer to ensure you cook your pork to perfection. 

Before the giveaway, let me inspire you with the best pork chop recipes you will want to try…

Grilled Pork Chops with Mango Guacamole

Grilled-Pork-Chop-Recipe2

Grilled Pork Chops with Chimichurri Sauce

grilled-pork-chops-with-chimichurri-sauce Brined and Grilled Pork Chops with Grilled Peaches

Brined and grilled pork chop recipe with grilled peaches

Pork Giveaway! 

Is your mouth watering? Do you want to have a party this summer and crash YOUR grill with pork?  Enter the Grill Crashers sweepstakes below and enter to win a $75 Krogers (Ralphs) gift card and digital meat thermometer so you can plan your own Grill Crashers party! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Crash Your Grill with Pork!

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Disclosure: This post is Sponsored by our friends at the National Pork Board to inspire readers with our favorite pork chop recipes!

porkcollage

Last month Susanne had us over for dinner and made these mouth-watering Grilled Pork Chops with Mango Guacamole.

The chops were so tasty we were inspired to host a family BBQ for friends to try out another one of her delicious pork recipes, Grilled Pork Chops with Chimichurri Sauce.

grilled-pork-chops-with-chimichurri-sauce

Crash Your Grill with Pork!

It’s common to get into a grilling and flavor rut, isn’t it? I know personally, we have our standard go-to grilling recipes that are recycled over and over again. Boring.

Grilling pork chops are a great way to mix up your menu and delight guests with unexpected, delectable flavors.  

This season, crash your grill with pork, and watch the rave reviews that result!

Plan a BBQ Together with a Friend

We wanted to surprise our guests with a delicious pork recipe at an outdoor BBQ to kick off the summer season.

Susanne came up with the amazing menu,  grilled pork chops with chimichurri sauce over a bed of grilled asparagus and tomato bread pudding, we set the date and our Grill Crashers Party was in motion.

From menu planning to shopping to designing the decor, planning a dinner party with a friend is so much fun. Not only does it split up the work load, but being able to share ideas and to-do lists takes off the burden and allows you to enjoy the process from start to finish.

Step 1: Time to Shop 

Ralphs

Ralphs was our supermarket of choice for shopping because we knew they would carry everything needed for our party. We love their selection of fresh herbs, all the Simple Truth product options, amazing wine selection, fresh flowers, and more.

The first stop on our shopping excursion was the butcher to check out their selection of boneless pork chops. When serving smaller groups, look for pre-cut pork chop packages, but when planning for a large group, you can ask the butcher to cut them for you.

Our Ralphs butcher was so accommodating. When the butcher cuts the chops you can customize the thickness (our preference – 3/4″ thick).

For those that opt for natural meat, Ralphs natural and organic line, Simple Truth, carries natural pork which is humanely raised, fed an all vegetarian diet, with no antibiotics, added hormones or preservatives.
porkpic RalphsCollage

Step 2: Party Prep!

I got to Susanne’s house early to help with the cooking and set-up. This is another benefit of throwing a dinner party with a friend – you can sip on a little wine and chat while getting ready and it doesn’t feel like work!   

She handled the food prep and I worked on setting the table.

Flowers are one of the most inexpensive ways you can add a pop of color to your party and make your dinner table feel special.

I love using mason jars and milk bottles as vases for outdoor BBQ’s. To me, this inspires a natural, rustic feel.

For a backyard party with all the natural elements, you really don’t need much more for decor. Opt for some fresh flowers, candles, and cafe lights and you add instant ambiance, without breaking the bank.

rustictable2

rustictable3

Now it’s time to talk about the star of the party – the pork chops! Here Susanne will give you the how-to on how to make this delicious pork chop recipe for your next party….

Grilled Pork Chops with Chimichurri Sauce,
Tomato Bread Pudding & Asparagus

[Click here to download and print the recipe]

serves 8 people

Chimichurri is a super fresh, herby sauce.  It’s little salty and a touch spicy in the best way possible giving your pork chop a bright, summery flavor.  Warning: you may want more than just one!  Paired with asparagus (in its peak season) and the delicious and sort of indulgent savory bread pudding.  This plate is sure to please the party people.

Grilled Pork Chops with Chimichurri Sauce

12 pork chops, boneless, 3/4 inch thick

garlic powder

onion powder

salt + pepper

Pat the pork chops dry and sprinkle liberally with onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Once done, set aside until it is time to grill.

grilled pork chop seasoning

susanne seasoning

Chimichurri Sauce 

1 cup flat leaf parsley, packed, stems removed, chopped

2-3 garlic cloves, minced

2 Tbsp fresh marjoram, chopped (or fresh oregano)

2 Tbsp red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon salt (maldon or kosher)

1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Stir together ingredients, serve at room temperature.  I like to make chimichurri sauce no more than a few hours ahead as the freshness of this sauce is key.  (If you need to make ahead, no more than 24 hours.)

chimichurri sauce herbs

chimichurri sauce

Grilled Asparagus

2 bunches, asparagus, tough ends snapped off and lightly shave the ends

1/2 lemon

drizzle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

salt + pepper

When you are finished grilling your pork chops, quickly put the asparagus over medium heat for no more than a few minutes, taking care to keep a little crunch to them.   Then quickly add the lemon to the grill for a minute to sweeten the juice a little and squeeze over the asparagus.

grilled asparagus

Tomato Bread Pudding Recipe 

Serves 6-8

12 cups (1 inch) cubes country style bread (can use a flavored bread, like garlic or rosemary, day old bread is best), crusts discarded

1 1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted

2 cloves crushed garlic

1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes

1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed from the stems

1 tbsp tomato paste

3/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp tabasco

tomato bread pudding

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 400.

Toss bread cubes with butter in a 13×9 inch baking dish until coated.

Place tomatoes in a saucepan along with brown sugar, garlic, thyme, tomato paste, salt and hot sauce.

Bring mixture just to a simmer, stirring to break up the tomato paste.  Pour mixture over bread, gently stirring to combine.  Bake uncovered, until edges are beginning to caramelize 35-40mins.  Watch carefully to make sure it doesn’t burn.

How to Grill Perfect Pork Chops

Because our men LOVE to BBQ we put them in charge of the grilling – careful not to share with our guests what was on the grill.  They probably assumed steak or chicken or burgers. But little did they know we had something special planned for them!

Here is Susanne’s husband Mike at the ‘cue.

grilled pork chop tips

You will want to grill your pork chops over medium heat, turning once, for 4-6 mins per side until they reach an internal temperature of 145-160 degrees F followed by a 3 minute rest.

We pulled them off the grill at 145 degrees, and then let them sit under foil to rest.

A digital meat thermometer is a necessity to ensure proper cooking. Click here for the full guide of pork cooking times and temps.

porktemp

pork1

The Grill Crashers Reveal!

In the meantime, our party guests were hanging out, keeping Baby Shea entertained with no idea we were about to crash the party with pork!

When we shared the menu they were surprised, and also really excited to try Susanne’s recipe.

Doesn’t Teresa look happy at the thought of having pork chops?

teresa

ourbbq
The pork chops were juicy and delicious and the herby sauce made it so flavorful.  And, please do yourself and your party guests a favor and try out Susanne’s tomato bread pudding recipe.  The dish was passed around and around for 2nds and 3rds.

Perhaps the most important feedback however, was from these little girls who can tend to have discriminating tastes when it comes to food (discriminating tastes = picky eaters). However the girls all loved the pork which we cubed for easier eating.

Big thumbs up.

kidslikeit2

Be Inspired to Throw Your Own Grill Crashers Party!

Our party was a huge hit! Everyone had the best time and the pork was the talk of the night.

Are you feeling inspired to throw your own summer BBQ and crash the grill with pork? We want you to be able to have the same experience too!

Come back here tomorrow for a big GIVEAWAY of a Grill Crashers prize back generously offered by the National Pork Board so you can plan your own Grill Crashers Party and crash your grill with pork.

Do you love grilling pork? What’s your favorite recipe? Please do share in the comments below! 

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Grilled Pork Chops with Mango Guacamole

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This grilled pork chop recipe post is Sponsored by our friends at the National Pork Board to inspire ideas for yummy pork recipes.

Grilled Pork Chop Recipe

Susanne had my family over for dinner recently and she made the most delectable grilled pork chop recipe I am ecstatic to share with you today.

The National Pork Board realized that we’re in need of flavor-packed inspiration!  They’re setting out to prove that getting bold flavor is as simple as choosing pork.  No matter what the grilling occasion is marked on your calendar, any cookout can use its amazing flavor.

A grilled pork chop is not only a leaner, healthier protein option, but also quite delicious.  Especially when you prepare using one of Susanne’s original recipes. You just gotta try this recipe. Perfect for summer nights.

This meal inspired us to host a neighborhood party in a few weeks and “crash” the party and the ‘cue with the unexpected – grilled pork chops. Isn’t it fun to serve something a little different?  So my friends, allow me to introduce you to the party crashers…

grilledporkchops

So stay tuned for an upcoming post featuring another one of Susanne’s original grilled pork chop recipes and a step-by-step run down on how we hosted a family get together and crashed the grill with pork chops.

Not only that, we will be running a giveaway including a Krogers/Ralphs gift card and grilling set so you can plan your own summer pork chop crash too!

Grilled Pork Chops with Mango Guacamole
Over Buttery Sautéed Bacon Corn

By Susanne Henderson 

This super simple marinade was my husband’s Grandpa Leo’s favorite way to make his pork chops, and we agree!  It imparts a delicious flavor to your pork chop every time.  Do not skip the corn, it complements your chop and is slightly addictive.  The Mango Guacamole adds a fresh summery flare making this recipe perfect for any summer grill out!

I shopped for my ingredients at my local Ralphs – my go-to grocery store for everything I need for a dinner party. I am a huge fan of their affordable Simple Truth organic and natural products and the Simple Truth Natural Pork Loin Chop Boneless they carry are the best!

Grilled Pork Chops 

Soy Sauce Marinade:

9 boneless pork chops (1″ thick)
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons garlic powder

marinatedporkchops

Place pork chops in baking dish, cover with soy sauce and sprinkle thoroughly with garlic powder.  Let marinade for at least 30 mins at room temperature (turning once half way through) or up to 2 hours in the fridge.

Grill 3-4 mins per side over medium heat or until they reach an internal temperature of 145 degrees with a 3-minute rest time.

Mango Guacamole 

2 Mangos, diced
1/2 red Bell Pepper, seeded + diced
3 Green Onion, diced
2 large Avocados, diced
1/2 tsp minced fresh Ginger
1/2 tsp minced fresh Garlic
1 Lime, juiced
1/2 bunch Cilantro
1/4 tsp sesame oil
Salt + Pepper

mangoguacamole

Stir together all of the above ingredients and season with salt + pepper to taste.

Buttery Bacon Sautéed Corn

8 ears of Corn, cut fresh off the cob
6 pieces of thick Bacon, diced
4 cloves Garlic minced
1 tbsp Butter
1/4 cup fresh Basil, chopped
Salt + Pepper

sauteedcorn

Sauté the bacon in a large sauté pan over medium heat until golden brown, and remove the bacon from the pan and place on a plate lined with paper towel.

Remove all but 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat from the pan, then add 1 tablespoon butter and add garlic sautéing until fragrant.

Add the corn to the pan and stir frequently until just cooked through with a little bite to the texture. (This will require multiple tasting bites which you will enjoy).

Season liberally with salt + pepper to taste and finish with the fresh basil.

grilledporkchopwithmangoguacamole

You would not BELIEVE the flavors of the pork chop when combined with the sweetness of the mango and the buttery goodness of the corn. Mouth-watering.

Once again, your own Grill Crashers party kit giveaway is coming up soon! Subscribe to our blog so you don’t miss the post! Happy grilling!

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Cheers

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When daylight savings arrives it reminds me of summer days ahead…warm days, bright sunshine and convening with friends and neighbors in the late afternoon to enjoy a cocktail while the kids play. This year I am in the mood to experiment with new cocktail recipes so I have been doing research on refreshing spring cocktail recipes I wanted to share with you today.

You’re welcome.

5-spring-cocktail-recipes

1. The Skinny Mojito

I love a mojito on warm days. There’s something about the crisp, sweet mint that instantly reminds me of summer and makes me wish I had a front porch with a swing to sit on and sip…

I found this recipe for a Skinny Mojito with Truvia Natural Sweetener which reduces the calories and has no added sugar, but is still super yummy.

2. Moscow Mule 

moscowmulemug

I have to  admit I might be a fan of the Moscow Mule Copper Mug (affiliate link) as much as I am of the cocktail.

My girlfriend made this special Moscow mule recipe last summer. Best play date ever.

* Crush mint leaves, ginger root & half a lime (or other citrus fruit) in a shot of citrus infused vodka.

* Pour contents in glass with crushed ice.

* Top with ginger beer or, for less calories, diet ginger ale. Add a mint leaf or wedge of citrus to garish.

3. Pink Greyhound Cocktail 

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The pink greyhound is one of the simplest cocktails you can make – essentially 6 oz of grapefruit juice mixed with 1.5 oz of vodka or gin served over ice.

Put salt on the rim, and turn it into a Salty Dog.

Sweet and refreshing.

4. Skinnygirl Margarita 

frankel-skinny-marg-400x400

I could live on chips, guacamole and margaritas in the summer. But with the added sugar, it can be a calorie-loaded cocktail. Especially when combined with the chips and guac cals I can put back!

Bethenny Frankel’s Skinnygirl margarita recipe replaces the sugar with fresh lime juice.

Still refreshing and cuts down the calories.

5. St. Germain Strawberry Lemonade 

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I found this recipe for St. Germain Strawberry Lemonade online on a blog called Fashionably Bombed, which might be one of my favorite blog names. Ever.

After reading the comments, I also do think, it would be super yummy with champagne as well.

Cheers! 

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Mom! What’s For Dinner?

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 Links in this post are Amazon affiliate links. 

I got a little craft recently with this DIY meal planning board which has has revolutionized weeknight dinners and reduced the “what’s for dinner?” stress in our house.

It was silly simple to make, and I even include a free printable meal planning template. Read the how to below.
DIY-Meal-Planning-Board-

The inspiration for this DIY meal planning board came from a recent BBQ we went to at a friend’s house. She had this ADORABLE framed meal planning board on her kitchen counter and told me it had been a lifesaver for her family. Not to mention the money they were saving from not going out to eat last minute.

I asked her where she got it, and she told me it was an easy DIY project. Basically all you need is a cute picture frame, a piece of scrapbook paper and a dry erase marker.

Hmmm. I am not super crafty, but it seemed even I could do that!

DIY Meal Planning Board Supplies 

1. Picture frame

I loved this one from Amazon:

 2. Scrapbook Paper

My friend had a super cute distressed wood scrapbook paper, so I attempted to find something similar in the gray tones with no luck at Michaels. However, I did find a distressed wood in brown tones. Here is a cute Barnwood Scrapbook Paper I found on Amazon if this look works for you.  The best part is, you can choose a paper/background to match your home decor.

 3. Free Printable Meal Planning Template

I created this free printable meal planning template -> CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD <- and all you have to do is cut the scrapbook paper to fit your printer, and print the template out on your paper of choice.

The scrapbook paper is so cheap you can buy a few designs and actually switch them out every now and again when you want a fresh look.

4. Dry Erase Marker

Last all you need is a Fine Tip Dry Erase Marker and you are good to go! My friend had hers attached to a string and mounted on the back, which is a great idea. I still need to do that. Then, when you are done with your weekly menu, simply erase and plan your new menu for the upcoming week.

5. Board or Frame Stand (If You Need One)

I have a pet peeve about picture frames falling or sliding when just using the built in cardboard stands, so I purchased this Two Wire Display Stand and love it! The white material grips to the surface of our kitchen counter top so it doesn’t slide around.

Happy menu planning!

Homemade Menu Planning Board

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