Who doesn’t love a fun and easy recipe on those chilly fall nights? If you’re anything like me, you might like sweet and savory combinations for a warm and cozy dinner! Here’s a family favorite – fancy grilled cheese and soup:
- Add a 30oz can of dice tomatoes, a 15oz can of tomato sauce, 3Tbsp of tomato paste, a medium diced yellow onion, a couple of cloves of garlic, a handful of chopped fresh basil, a pinch of salt (I like using kosher salt), some pepper, and a quart of chicken broth (I like the reduced sodium broth so I can add salt to taste).
- Cook all of the above in your Crockpot, on low, for 6-8 hours (or high for 3-4).
- You’ll need to blend all the above-cooked ingredients to make it smooth. You can use an immersion blender right in the Crockpot or transfer it to a blender (don’t add too much to the blender at a time, you’ll be mad about the mess you’ll make).
- Now, you could stop here, season to taste, and serve with your yummy grilled cheese sandwich. Or you could make that tomato soup creamy to help cut some of the acidity from the tomatoes. Here’s how you would do that:
- Throw a saucepan over medium heat and add 3Tbsp of butter. Once it’s fully melted, add 3Tbsp of flour and cook/whisk for about a minute. You want to cook out that flour taste. Get yourself a 12oz can of evaporated milk and a cup of heavy cream (I typically use half & half instead of heavy cream). Slowly whisk in the milk and cream into the butter/flour mixture and whisk until it’s smooth and thickened. Then stir in about 1 1/2 cups of shredded parmesan cheese and let it melt. Stir all that creamy goodness into your soup mixture waiting in the Crockpot!
- Let the mixture come together and heat up for about 20 minutes, then dish it up in a big bowl, awaiting a grilled cheese sandwich dunk! Don’t forget to garnish with some parmesan cheese and fresh basil.
- Spread a butter/garlic powder blend on two slices of sourdough bread. Top with sliced cheddar cheese (or your cheese of choice), cooked bacon, and a couple thin apple slices. Plop the sandwich on a skillet over medium-low heat until the cheese melts and the bread is golden.
*Pro Tip: If you want to get a little fancy, add some shredded parmesan cheese (or even parmesan in a can) to your butter/garlic mixture to spread on the bread!
***If you don’t have time to gather all the ingredients for the soup, I personally love the Chicken Tortilla Soup found in the frozen aisle at HyVee. You just throw the frozen soup bag in a pot of boiling water and let it heat through. After the soup is no longer frozen and steaming hot, I dump the soup out of the bag and into the pot (dump out the boiling water first of course). I like to add some shredded rotisserie chicken found in the deli area at HyVee, or canned chicken (drained), and let that heat through in the soup on the stove. It gives the soup a little more substance, but it’s also perfectly good without the extra chicken. Top it with some shredded cheddar and sour cream if you’d like! Even corn chips are fantastic on top!
Here are a few more yummy and simple recipes!
Mississippi Pot Roast & Mashed Potatoes (you could also get store bought mashed potatoes in the cooler section at the grocery store…or even throw some red potatoes in the crock pot with the roast). This is the BEST pot roast recipe ever created!
Personal Pita Pizzas! Get some pita bread from the store, top with some sauce and add your favorite ingredients, heat oven to 450, throw in oven for about 5 minutes (make sure cheese is melty and pita looks a little crispy on the edges. This is a fun one for the kids to help make – they love spreading the sauce and adding the toppings!
Cheesy Chicken Tortellini Soup:
- Boil 3-4 frozen chicken breasts in 3 cups of water and shred (I throw the chicken in a food processor to shred once it’s done). Be sure to save the water from the boil.
- In a pan, melt 4Tbsp of butter with 2 chicken bouillon cubes.
- In a food processor, shred about 2-3 carrots and dice a small onion and 3 cloves of garlic, minced. Add all of the veggies in the butter/bouillon mixture in the pan and allow it to sauté for about 5 minutes.
- In a crockpot, add the chicken, sautéed veggies, and water from the chicken boil. Also add a jar of cheese wiz, 2 cups of half & half (or heavy cream), 2 cups of milk, and a package of frozen cheese tortellini. Throw it on low for about 6 hours, or on high for about 3.
- Top with shredded cheese and sour cream in a serving bowl! And grab a yummy baguette from the store to dip in the soup. So good!
Grilled Cheese and Soup inspired by the two recipes below:
“Grilled Cheese with Apple and Bacon”. Food Network Magazine, Courtesy of Tyler Florence. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/grilled-cheese-with-apple-and-bacon-3363601. Accessed October 14, 2022.
“Slow Cooker Creamy Tomato Basil Soup”. The Chunky Chef. https://www.thechunkychef.com/creamy-tomato-basil-soup/. Accessed October 14, 2022.
Make sure you never miss out on a parenting or community-related blog post: sign up to receive Cedar Rapids Moms posts in your inbox. While you’re at it, join our VIP List to ensure you’re one of the first to know about upcoming Cedar Rapids Moms’ events and promotions!