Green Apple Grilled Cheese

Green Apple Grilled Cheese

Hello! I’m back with another green apple recipe!

This is an easy way to take your grilled cheese up a notch, and delicious too!

I love putting green apples in my grilled cheese because they give a nice crunch and crispness to your bite. Plus, apples and cheese just make a great pair.

You only need a few ingredients to make this: green apple, Havarti cheese, Gouda cheese, mayonnaise, and bread. I prefer to use sourdough, but any bread will do!

Start by thinly slicing your apples and laying out your bread. Place the Havarti cheese on one of the slices of bread, and place the apples on top. Layer the other cheese on top of the apples, and top with the other slice of bread.

Spread mayonnaise on the bread before putting it into your hot pan, and you’re ready to go! I cook mine on medium heat, and cover with a lid to try and help the cheese get gooey. Flip when golden brown, and cook until the other side is the same color.

There you have it! An “adult” grilled cheese sandwich. This is one of my favorite sandwiches, so I hope you enjoy!

Green Apple Grilled Cheese

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Caramelized Cinnamon Sugar Apples

Caramelized Cinnamon Sugar Apples over Ice Cream

Happy fall, everyone!

This is my favorite time of the year, and some of my favorite things to eat are during this season. Pies, apples, squash, soups…I am so ready! I love all the warm spices used and the way your entire home smells after cooking or baking with them.

This is a simple dessert recipe that I like to use. It takes a total of 10 minutes (maybe even less if you prep fast!) and has 5 ingredients. I’m telling ya, super easy!

What You’ll Need

  • granny smith apple
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • cinnamon
  • sugar
  • French vanilla ice cream

How To

  • Start by rinsing the apple, and then use an apple slicer to remove the core and have even slices. If some slices are bigger than you’d like, feel free to cut them in half.
  • In a pan on medium-high heat, add the apples, butter, and sprinkle liberally with cinnamon and sugar.
All Ingredients in the Pan
  • Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring every so often. They are ready to serve when they are golden and there is some syrup formed in the pan.
  • Place the apples over your favorite brand of French vanilla ice cream, drizzle some syrup over the top, and enjoy!
Caramelized Cinnamon Sugar Apples over Ice Cream

There you have it! Another easy recipe for you to try.

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Overnight French Toast

Overnight French Toast

Hello again! I’m back with another yummy recipe for you all! This one came from Austin’s mom, Lisa. I am so happy that she shared this recipe with us, because it tastes so dang good! It’s easily become one of our favorite breakfast/brunch meals. Thank you, Lisa!

This recipe is fairly easy, and besides soaking overnight, takes hardly any time to do! So don’t be scared off when you see “Part 1” and “Part 2” below!

The berries and bananas used make a syrup in the bottom of the pan, and it works so well with the crispy French bread. My mouth is literally watering while I’m typing this…it’s that good.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to comment below!

Overnight French Toast

Ingredients

  • 1 French loaf
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla
  • about 24 ounces (1 bag) of frozen mixed berries and/or strawberries
  • 4 bananas, sliced
  • 1 cup sugar
  • cinnamon and sugar
  • powdered sugar
  • optional- maple syrup

Recipe Part 1

  1. Cut the French loaf into very thick slices, about 8-10.
  2. Combine milk, eggs, baking powder, and vanilla. Whisk together.
  3. In a large baking dish or roasting pan, place the French loaf slices in a single layer.
  4. Pour the milk mixture over the bread. Be sure to turn the slices over to coat both sides in the mixture.
  5. Cover and set in fridge overnight.
After Pouring the Mixture Over the Bread Slices, but Before Turning Them

Recipe Part 2

  1. In the morning, mix the frozen berries, bananas, and cup of sugar.
  2. Place the fruit mixture into a large greased baking dish or roasting pan, and place the soaked bread on top of the berries. Again, in a single layer.
  3. Sprinkle everything with cinnamon and sugar, and bake in the oven at 450° for 20-25 minutes.
  4. Once the bread is golden brown, and no longer soggy, it is ready to be taken out.
  5. Sprinkle with powdered sugar (as seen in the first picture on the blog), and serve.

The berries make that delicious syrup you can use to top the French toast with, but you can also use maple syrup, just in case!

I served ours with a side of bacon, and man, that was a good choice. I hope you enjoy this as much as we do!

Overnight French Toast Served with Bacon

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Beet and Tomato Salad

Beet and Tomato Salad

Hello again! Summer is coming to an end, but there is still plenty of time to make this yummy salad. It is light, fresh, and super easy to make!

This was my first time ever cooking with, or eating beets. Ever. I felt like Dwight Schrute from The Office the entire time I was making this salad, and it was great. Since it was my first time trying beets, I wanted to include ingredients that I loved (like what I did with the brussels sprouts), to try and ensure I’d like them. I have to say, the beets tasted better than I thought they would! Definitely making this salad more often.

Fun fact: the beets and tomato used were grown by Austin’s parents!

The beets do need to be roasted and chilled, so make sure you give yourself a few hours head-start! Any questions? Just ask!

Ingredients

  • 2 beets
  • 1 extra large tomato, or 2 medium tomatoes
  • spinach
  • goat cheese
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper

Recipe

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°
  2. Scrub the beets clean, and then wrap in foil, individually.
  3. Roast in the oven on a baking sheet for 45 minutes.
  4. Once the foil is cool to the touch, peel the beets. It should slide off by hand, but a peeler may be needed.
  5. Chill beets in fridge until ready to make salad.
  6. When ready to make the salad, dice the beets and tomatoes into similar sized pieces.
  7. Take a handful of spinach (or more if you’d like), and cut into long thin strips.
  8. Combine the beets, tomatoes and spinach in a bowl. Drizzle with a small amount of olive oil, followed by a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.
  9. Mix ingredients together, and salt and pepper to taste.
  10. Finish with goat cheese and enjoy!
Beet and Tomato Salad

I hope that you all enjoy this recipe if you try it! I would love to hear your thoughts!

If you enjoy this recipe and like what you see, give me a follow here or @thecookingcactus on Instagram!

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Stuffed Poblano Peppers

Stuffed Poblano Peppers

Hello! I am back with another yummy dinner recipe for you guys! This one was so much fun for me to make. All of the vegetables I used to make this were grown in my boyfriend’s parents garden! You all know how much I love to use fresh vegetables, so you can imagine my excitement in making this dish.

Normally I make stuffed peppers with bell peppers, but I wanted to try another pepper and tweak my filling a little. (I’m so glad I did!) There will be a lot of leftover filling, unless you decide you want to do more peppers than the 4 I have included in the recipe. I like having the leftover filling to eat on its own, like in the picture above. It can also be used for tacos or burritos the next day!

This recipe takes about an hour to make from start to finish. That includes the prep and baking time. If you have any questions about the recipe, just ask!

Ingredients

  • 4 poblano peppers
  • 1/2 white onion, diced
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1/4 cup ricotta cheese
  • Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • olive oil

Recipe

  1. Start cooking the rice as directed. If using a rice cooker, you can do 1 cup of brown rice with 1/2 cups of water.
  2. While rice is cooking, prep the peppers. Cut the tops off, and clean the insides out, making sure to get all the seeds. Set peppers aside.
  3. In a pan on low heat, add some olive oil, onions, and the garlic. When those have cooked for a few minutes, add the ground beef and turn the heat to medium. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350°
  5. When the beef is browned, turn the heat off and add the rice, tomatoes, and cheeses to the pan. Mix together well, and salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Now time to stuff the peppers. Add the filling to the peppers with a small spoon, and place in a baking pan after. Once all peppers are filled, drizzle a little olive oil over the peppers and top with Parmesan cheese.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes, and let cool for 5 minutes.
  8. Once peppers are cooled, enjoy!

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do! I served ours with some toasted cheesy bread I made, and it was delicious!

If you enjoy this recipe and like what you see, give me a follow here or @thecookingcactus on Instagram!

Thanks for stopping by The Cooking Cactus!

Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad

Hey ya’ll! Here is another easy recipe that I love: chicken salad. It only calls for a few ingredients, and you can make it according to how YOU like it. It can have more of an ingredient or less of an ingredient. All I know is, however you make it, it’s easy and fast!

Ingredients

  • chicken breasts
  • mayonnaise
  • celery
  • red onion
  • salt and pepper to taste

Recipe

  1. Start by boiling water in a large pot. When water is boiling, drop chicken in and cook until done- about 8-10 minutes.
  2. While chicken is cooking, dice up your celery and red onion.
  3. When chicken is done, it needs to be shredded. Easiest way is to use your stand mixer on medium speed with the dough hook attachment. (Shout out to my friend Tina for this trick!) If you don’t have a stand mixer, that’s totally fine! You can shred the chicken manually with forks.
  4. Once the chicken is shredded, it’s time to combine all the ingredients.
  5. Add the diced celery and red onion, salt and pepper.
  6. Add mayonnaise to the chicken mixture as well. You want enough to coat all of the other ingredients.
  7. Mix together, and add more mayonnaise as needed.
  8. Season with more salt and pepper if needed.
  9. Enjoy!
Chicken Salad Sandwich

I like to eat my chicken salad on toasted sourdough bread, with a little more mayonnaise spread on the bread, and lettuce. This is seriously one of my favorite and easiest recipes.

If you have any questions feel free to ask!

If you enjoy this recipe and like what you see, give me a follow here or @thecookingcactus on Instagram!

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Double Fried French Fries

Double Fried French Fries

Hello everyone! So sorry for the long wait in between posts. I talked a little about it on a post on my Instagram story, but for those of you that don’t follow my Instagram (which I would recommend doing!) here’s a quick update before I give you a yummy recipe.

On July 4th and 5th, my small town of Ridgecrest had a 6.4 and 7.1 magnitude earthquake hit. Luckily my little family was safe and our damage was minimal compared to others. We’re still trying to recover on the mental side of things (hence my absence), and that’s going to be the biggest challenge. It took some time to clean up, but things are getting back to normal now and I’m so thankful for the help we’ve received.

Okay. Now that that’s out of the way, how about we get back to cooking and fun stuff?!

Double. Fried. French. Fries.

That’s right, I said double fried. Is there any other way to make fries? I think not. These are hand cut fries, and one of my favorite snacks. This recipe is a little time consuming, but SO WORTH IT!

As always, if you need help with anything just shoot me a message or leave a comment!

Ingredients

  • 9 russet potatoes
  • Vegetable oil (a lot!)
  • Water
  • Salt

Let’s get frying!

  • Peel your potatoes.
  • Set a large bowl off to the side so you can place the cut potatoes into it when they’re ready.
  • Next is cutting. I like to have thinner fries, so here’s how I cut mine: slice your potato in half lengthwise. Place both halves cut side down so they have a flat surface. Slice lengthwise into thin slices all along the potato. Take those slices, and cut into smaller, fry-like shapes and set aside in the large bowl. Repeat for all potatoes.
  • When potatoes are all cut, they should resemble this:
Sliced Potatoes
  • After all the sliced potatoes are put into the bowl, fill with water until they are all covered and set aside for 2-3 hours.
  • When the potatoes are done soaking, drain the water. Place potatoes on a baking sheet and pat dry with a paper towel.
  • Now we’re ready to fry!
  • For this I would recommend a deep fryer, but if you do not have one, a large, deep pan will work. Fryer: fill with oil to the max fill line and set to 350°. Pan: fill halfway with oil, and heat until the oil reaches the same temperature.
  • When oil is ready, take a handful of the potatoes and slowly add them to the oil. Do not just drop or throw them in as the oil will splash more and can burn you.
  • Cook until the potatoes start to get golden, about 2 minutes. Remove from oil and place on a baking sheet to cool.
Right to Left: Un-fried Potatoes, Frying Process, Once Fried Potatoes
  • Repeat until all of the potatoes have been fried once.
  • When the potatoes have all been fried, it’s time for the double fry that makes them crispy and delicious.
  • Same process of frying, but instead of cooling on a baking sheet alone, place a cooling rack over the baking sheet. I find this helps keep them crispy.
  • While the fries are on the cooling rack, salt to taste immediately.
  • Continue the frying and salting process until all have been double fried.
  • Once all the fries are done, you’re ready to serve them up with a juicy cheeseburger or eat alone!
Double Fried French Fries

We served ours with a cheeseburger since we just got a new grill. Let me tell ya, SO GOOD!

Double Fried French Fries and a Cheeseburger

And there you have it! A little time consuming, but you get the satisfaction of knowing you did everything by hand- something I love!

If you enjoy this recipe and like what you see, give me a follow here or @thecookingcactus on Instagram!

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