Melissa Recipe Reviews (Pg. 1) - Allrecipes.com (11071446)

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Marie's Easy Slow Cooker Pot Roast

Reviewed: Mar. 17, 2011
I have prepared my pot roasts this way quite a few times now, and am finally getting around to reviewing the recipe! Sometimes I add a teaspoon or two of Better than Bouillon beef base, a clove or two of minced garlic, or use beef broth rather than water, but the basic recipe always remains the same, and always turns out delicious. I had planned on making this today, actually. I bought my beef in bulk from a local farmer who raises grass-fed cows for the first time ever, and was so excited to pop my first grass-fed roast into the crock pot this morning! I defrosted it, unwrapped it, and then realized it was actually a 7-bone chuck roast. Not a boneless chuck roast. I had already defrosted it, so I went ahead and browned it, then tried to stuff it in my crock pot. No such luck. It wasn't going to fit. So, it sat in my refrigerator in my covered roasting pan "marinating" in the onion soup mix and water all day while I did some research on how to cook a 7-bone roast in the oven. Just in case anyone wants to use this type of cut, or finds themselves in a similar bind, here's what I did: bake covered at 280 for 4 hours, adding the veggies at the last hour. The result was fall-off-the-bone, slice-with-a-fork, melt in your mouth tender and absolutely delicious! Crock pot is good, but this method produced a roast equally as good. The next "variation" I'm going to try is to make my own onion soup mix from a recipe also here on AllRecipes. Can't wait!
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36 users found this review helpful

Smoked Sausage and Red Beans

Reviewed: Jan. 8, 2011
I'm always on the lookout for good crock pot meals, as they make life as the mom of two under four much easier! This one caught my eye and I made it for the first time today. It was delicious! I read through the comments first and learned that the recipe was incorrect in saying to add the rice to the crock pot, so I didn't. I did the rice separately in the rice cooker. My husband can't handle much heat, so I cut down a bit on the Cajun seasoning and omitted the hot pepper sauce. I also halved the recipe as my crock pot is not large enough to hold the amount of food this recipe makes. Other than that though, I followed the recipe exactly, and the result was absolutely delicious! I have to admit I was a little leery of adding so much garlic, but it really gave the dish a nice flavor. I served it with cornbread and a salad. Yum! I will definitely be making this again! And I think next time I will go ahead and add the full amount of Cajun seasoning the recipe calls for. Update 2/26/2011: I decided to make this with dry beans today rather than canned. It's cheaper that way, and you avoid nasty preservatives. Prepare the beans according to the package directions (you will need to start them at LEAST 3 hours ahead of time, or you can soak overnight). Once the beans are prepared, you can toss them in the crockpot just as you would canned beans and follow the recipe from there. 1 lb of dry beans is perfect for 1/2 recipe. 2 lbs for full recipe.
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36 users found this review helpful

Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2010
The flavor in this was wonderful, but I hope my review will help some others out! I followed the recipe for this exactly, except that I doubled it so we'd have enough to serve all our guests for Christmas dinner, and omitted the onions because my family just doesn't really like onions. I put it in a glass casserole dish and baked at 400. An hour later, I opened the oven to put in the other side dishes, and saw that the cheese sauce was burning on the top and bottom of the dish! Fortunately, the cheesy potatoes in between the burnt parts was delicious, so we were able to salvage about half of it. So, please learn from my experience. First off, either make sure you don't use glass, or if you do, reduce the temperature at which you bake it to 350. Also, make sure you cover the dish with foil for the first hour of baking. Remove the foil for the last 30 minutes. One of our dinner guests was a culinary specialists, so he gave me these tips. :) I will be attempting this again, and will update if I can. But in the meantime, I hope my review helps save someone else from burning and/or ruining their potatoes.
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19 users found this review helpful

Patriotic French Toast

Reviewed: Jul. 5, 2010
Great idea! I made these for breakfast on the 4th of July, and they were a hit! I did add a little bit of nutmeg to the egg mixture, as we like that flavor in our french toast, and used cinnamon bread. I do think the servings and measurements are off. As written, this recipe makes WAY more than 8 slices of french toast. As I was putting together the egg mixture, I thought 2 eggs and 2 cups of milk sounded like a lot for just 8 slices, so I cut it in half. Boy am I glad I did! I had just enough for 8 slices! Had I followed the recipe exactly, I'd have needed to use 16 slices just to use up the egg mixture. With only two adults and a toddler to feed, I didn't need that much. I wish I'd thought to cut back on the cream cheese mixture too. A whole package of cream cheese and 2 cups of sugar made a lot. I now have a lot of leftover icing to use up . . . but I also have a lot of fresh strawberries and blueberries to use up, so I may just buy another loaf of bread and make this again tomorrow! So, if you need only 8 servings, halve everything but the berries and bread. If you need 16 servings, use the recipe as is, but double the amount of berries and bread. Thanks for sharing!
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19 users found this review helpful

Amy's Sensational Summer Salad

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2010
This salad was amazing! My husband is not usually a fan of vinaigrette dressings, but he even raved about this salad! We live in an area where fresh berries of all kinds are plentiful from spring to early fall, so we will be making this a lot! Thanks so much for the idea! The flavors of all the ingredients combined perfectly!
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13 users found this review helpful

Easy Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Reviewed: Jul. 4, 2012
I have made this ice cream a few times now, always exactly as written, and every single time it comes out absolutely, incredibly delicious! We've even made it for company or to take to potlucks, and every single time, we get rave compliments about how good it is. As I write, I am making another batch to celebrate the 4th of July (making ice cream has become an Independence Day tradition for our family), and I am looking forward to digging into it after our big meal this afternoon. Couldn't be easier or more delicious, and I LOVE that it doesn't have raw eggs in it! I was pregnant the first time I made this, and have preschoolers helping me to eat it up, so raw eggs were a worry for me and a deciding factor in choosing this recipe the first time around. Obviously, I have not been disappointed! :)
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12 users found this review helpful

Avocado Chicken Stir-Fry

Reviewed: Jan. 20, 2011
I made this for dinner for the first time tonight, and have to say it was delicious! The only thing I changed was to use olive oil instead of vegetable oil because it is healthier, and used low sodium soy sauce instead of regular soy sauce. It was different, but not in a bad way at all! I am really glad I used the low sodium soy sauce though, because it would have been too salty otherwise! The low sodium soy gave it just enough flavor, and the flavors of the veggies, chicken, and sauce all blended perfectly. If I change anything at all next time, it might be to add a tad more garlic. My husband is an avid avocado and mushroom fan, so I thought I couldn't go wrong with this one. I was right! He loved it! Thanks so much for sharing this recipe! It will be a repeat for us!
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12 users found this review helpful

Easy Spaghetti with Tomato Sauce

Reviewed: Aug. 6, 2011
I found myself scrounging around in my pantry looking for something to make for dinner this evening. I had spaghetti noodles, a pound of ground beef, and a bunch of cans of tomato in its various forms. So, I figured spaghetti sounded good . . . but I'd never made my own sauce before, and wasn't about to attempt figuring out the spices on my own. Thank goodness for allrecipes! I found this recipe for spaghetti sauce, and decided to give it a try. We were NOT disappointed! Yum! Thick, unlike the runny sauces you get in jars at the store, and probably healthier too! Very flavorful . . . tasted exactly like I thought spaghetti sauce should, only better! The only thing I did different was to add a teaspoon of basil and used a teaspoon of fresh minced garlic instead of the garlic powder. We just like garlic a lot, and like basil in our spaghetti sauce as well, so I thought why not? I am adding this to my recipe box, and will be making my spaghetti sauce like this from now on!
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11 users found this review helpful

'Calabacitas Guisada' (Stewed Mexican Zucchini)

Reviewed: May 19, 2011
I just made this dish for the first time this evening, and I have to say wow! I was hunting for a Mexican vegetable dish to go with my chicken enchiladas, and this definitely fit the bill! I grew up in Southern California, and love Mexican food, but had never had anything like this before. It was delicious and will be my go-to vegetable for serving with Mexican meals from now on! My opinion isn't the one that counts though. My husband invited a young family over on the spur of the moment. I was a little worried about serving them something I had never made before, but decided I couldn't go wrong with all the rave reviews. It was this or meatloaf, and chicken enchiladas just seem a better "company" meal to me. Anyway, I had everything just about ready when they got here, and I discovered that the husband is actually Mexican! I'm talking native Mexican! When he saw these calabacitas on the table, his eyes absolutely lit up! He said they looked exactly like the ones he makes. But the real compliment came when he tried them. He said this is authentic Mexican! It's one thing coming from a gringo like me. But you know it's good when a native Mexican tells you so! You can't get a much better compliment than that! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe! It's definitely a keeper as written!
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9 users found this review helpful

Spicy Shredded Beef

Reviewed: Aug. 13, 2012
I made this for the first time this evening. But rather than babysitting it on the stove for two hours, I opted to attempt it in the crock pot. I am so glad I did, because it saved me a lot of time and trouble! First off, I didn't have to cut it into 1-inch pieces. I just browned the whole roast in a little olive oil and popped the whole thing into the crock pot. I then covered it with the canned tomatoes and spices, threw in a tiny bit of red wine and some beef broth for a little extra liquid, and cooked it on low for 10 hours. When we were ready to eat, the roast was practically falling apart and shred very easily. My first taste after shredding it was really quite bland and dry, so I spooned quite a bit of the liquid back over it and stirred it as the beef sucked it right up. I then tasted again, and wow, what a difference! Moist and flavorful! Next time I make this, I will likely do the same thing with the crock pot for cooking it, but not omit simmering on the stove in the liquid after shredding it. I have a feeling that step makes all the difference in the flavor for this dish. I served it with homemade whole wheat tortillas and all your usual taco fixings. If you are looking for a little extra heat or more flavor, try adding a little oregano, cilantro, chili powder or cayenne pepper, and/or a little more cumin (I wound up needing a full teaspoon). Really, this is one of those recipes that leaves a lot of room for customization.
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7 users found this review helpful

Quinoa with Veggies

Reviewed: Sep. 14, 2011
This was my first attempt at quinoa, and I have to say it was pretty good! I did, however, follow the package instructions for cooking the quinoa, which said to use 2 cups of water to 1 cup of quinoa and simmer until the quinoa had absorbed all the liquid. Boiling it in an extra cup of liquid and then draining just didn't make any sense to me when I could just cook it like rice, hence the reason I gave the recipe only four stars. I also added some Better than Bouillon chicken base for a little added flavor, and had to play around a bit with the veggies as I didn't have red bell pepper or green onions on hand. In the end, I wound up using canned corn, and fresh tomatoes, chives, and carrots from our garden that needed to be used up. Threw in some basil and thyme instead of oregano when I couldn't find it in my spice cabinet, but kept the rest of the spices the same. Yum! So good! And honestly, I think the cumin and garlic made this dish! This will definitely be a repeat in my kitchen! Thanks for giving me a starting point to use up what I had on hand! A great first experience with quinoa!
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7 users found this review helpful

Sandy's Chocolate Cake

Reviewed: Aug. 15, 2010
This was my first attempt at making a cake from scratch. I have to say I was NOT disappointed! Instead of baking it in cake form, however, I used the recipe to make 45 cupcakes for my son's first birthday party. Yep. 45. I read a review saying the recipe makes 26-28 cupcakes, and so thought I'd just follow the directions as written. In hindsight, I should have cut it in half, but now we have lots of yummy cupcakes to munch on and share! I prepared the recipe exactly as written, except that I spooned the batter into lined cupcake pans, filling each cup about 2/3 full. I baked the cupcakes at 350 for 15 minutes, and they turned out incredibly moist. I also prepared the frosting exactly as written, and there was just enough to liberally spread over each cupcake. Yep! All 45! And I piled it on! I didn't have to scrimp on the frosting at all, and even had a tiny bit left in the bowl, which my husband appreciated! The cake itself was light, moist, fluffy, and absolutely delicious. The frosting was also scrumptious . . . not too rich, just the right amount of sweet. The end result was perfect! I will definitely be making this again, but am going to try doing an actual cake next time! Update 4/1/2011: I just made this as a cake and followed the recipe exactly except that I didn't have quite enough sour cream for both the cake AND frosting. I made up the difference with some cream cheese I had on hand. End result, PERFECT! Everyone raved about it! This is a keeper!
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7 users found this review helpful

Gourmet Sweet Potato Classic

Reviewed: Dec. 22, 2012
I have prepared this recipe a few times now, exactly as written, and it turns out amazing every single time! It is almost like a crustless sweet potato pie. Definitely could pass for a dessert. This is one of those potluck favorites. Every time I bring it to an event or family gathering, I have someone ask me for the recipe. I will never make sweet potato casserole using a different recipe again. This is it for me!
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6 users found this review helpful

Mexican Rice III

Reviewed: May 19, 2011
I have made Mexican rice before, but had never found the perfect recipe until now! I tried this one for the first time this evening, and it was perfect! Absolutely delicious! I did do a tiny bit of tweaking for convenience sake and to use what I had on hand, but I basically followed the recipe. I doubled the recipe because we had some company over. In the interest of time, I used two 14 oz cans of diced tomatoes (juice drained off so I didn't have too much liquid) instead of seeding and chopping a couple of fresh ones. As per another reviewer's tip on the ratio of liquid to rice, I used four cups of broth to two cups of rice. I'd used half an onion for another side, so instead of using a whole onion for a double batch, I just used the other half of the onion I'd already chopped. I think it would have been fantastic with the full amount of onion too though. I also cut out the jalapeno, because my husband can't take much heat, and used olive oil rather than vegetable oil. But other than that, I prepared the recipe as written. This has gone into my recipe box, and will be my go-to recipe for Mexican rice from now on!
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6 users found this review helpful

Bella's Rosemary Red Potatoes

Reviewed: Jul. 23, 2011
I have made these potatoes twice now, and I seriously doubt I will ever use another recipe for roasted red potatoes! The first time I made them, I prepared the recipe as written, using a ziploc bag to mix it all up rather than a bowl and lining the pan with foil, as suggested by several other reviewers. This time, I used the same technique, but used olive oil in place of vegetable oil (still used the butter too!), and added some fresh parsley and chives from our garden to the mixture along with the rosemary, salt, and pepper. Oh my goodness, they turned out sooooo good! Served with steaks and a salad, and these were the perfect finishing touch to our meal. Thank you for sharing! This recipe is definitely a keeper!
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4 users found this review helpful

Delicious Ham and Potato Soup

Reviewed: Jan. 5, 2011
This was very good, and exactly the recipe to help use up some leftover Christmas ham. However, it does NOT need salt! If you are using a cured, fully cooked ham, do not add salt unless you like your soup really salty. I added the 1/2 tsp the recipe calls for before tasting it, and wound up having to add 2 TBSP of sugar just to counter the salty taste. It still wound up being almost too salty for our tastes. So make sure you taste your soup before adding salt. You may find you don't need it. I also added about 1 tsp thyme and 1 TBSP parsley, and will do so when I make this again as they added a really nice flavor to the soup. Also, I think instead of salt, I will be adding 1 TBSP or more of white sugar next time. It really seemed to bring out the flavor of the ham, whereas the salt just overwhelmed it. One other thing I changed this time and will do again was to use chicken broth in place of the water and chicken bouillon. With these changes, this recipe is a definite keeper.
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4 users found this review helpful

Refrigerator Rolls

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2010
I don't know what I did wrong! I was so excited to find this recipe, as it seemed like it would make my Christmas go a lot smoother as I prepared a Christmas feast. I followed the recipe to the letter, except for having to add about 1 cup more flour in order to make a soft dough. I think it actually needed even more flour than that, in the end, as it was still really sticky. That or reduce the amount of liquid. Other than the extra flour though, I followed the recipe to a "T," even paying excruciating detail to the temperature of the water with which I proofed the yeast and which was added to the dough. I left it in the fridge overnight, but when I checked on it the next morning, it didn't look like it had risen at all. I left it, since I didn't need it just yet. But when I took the dough out of the fridge to form the rolls, I could tell as I worked with it that it was still extremely heavy. It didn't punch down at all, so I know it didn't rise at all. Not even a fraction of an inch. Nothing. At that point, I just wound up chucking it. I don't want to give this recipe no stars, but I also don't want to give it five stars. I really just have no idea what I did wrong. But then, I always seem to ruin yeast-risen breads somehow, so maybe it's just me. This recipe seemed too easy to fail, but unfortunately, it didn't work at all for me.
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4 users found this review helpful

Chicken Enchiladas IV

Reviewed: Jun. 22, 2010
This was a FANTASTIC recipe with the changes recommended by many other reviewers. I used green enchilada sauce instead of salsa. I mixed a little into the chicken mixture, then dipped each tortilla in the sauce before filling and wrapping it. I then spooned the remaining sauce over the enchiladas and baked, topping with cheese just as I pulled it out of the oven. It was absolutely scrumptious! The best enchiladas I have ever eaten! We had company over, and they kept raving about how delicious they were too, so this one's a keeper! I will be making these often!
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4 users found this review helpful

Rosemary Biscuits

Reviewed: Apr. 24, 2010
I just made these for dinner for the first time, and followed the recipe exactly. Yum! Perfectly moist, fluffy biscuits with a nice flavor! And, best of all, they have less calories and fat than regular biscuits! I will definitely be making these again!
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4 users found this review helpful

Chocolate Covered Cherries

Reviewed: Feb. 9, 2010
Oh my goodness, these were soooo incredibly delicious!!! These will be a part of my holiday baking from now on! No one could stop eating these once they started! The only thing I would emphasize is that it is very important to drop these in paper candy cups as soon as you've dipped them in the chocolate coating. I didn't do that. I just put them on waxed paper to harden. When I peeled them off the waxed paper, there was a little bare spot on the bottom of each of them where the chocolate hadn't covered the filling. As the juices from the cherries mixed with the filling in each candy, the delicious liquid leaked out. It made for a big mess. A yummy mess, but definitely a big yummy mess! :) I think dropping them into paper cups instead of onto the waxed paper would help to keep the juices contained within the chocolate shell.
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4 users found this review helpful

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