It’s not always fancy.

Baked Beans from a can + sautéed yellow squash + Crescent Roll Hot Dogs = EASY summer meal!

My mom is an amazing cook. I grew up eating the best of the best- homemade everything. From the best chicken fried steak in Texas to homemade rolls and my all-time favorite coconut meringue pie, my momma’s cooking is uh-mazing. I didn’t grow up eating anything out of a box {other than cereal} and we rarely ate fast food. We had tacos, beans and cornbread, potato cakes, pulled pork, spaghetti and meatballs, enchiladas, etc…every. single. night. My dad helped a little by cooking me homemade waffles with homemade maple syrup pretty much every morning of my childhood. Spoiled much? Seriously. I had it goooood.

You’d think that I would have left home with some cooking skills. But because I just ate the food and didn’t take the time to learn, well… I didn’t learn to really cook. Sure, I knew how to scramble an egg or make a grilled cheese sandwich, but that’s about it. I made my way through college eating ramen noodles and frozen pizza. And poor Trey. When we got married I made things like Hamburger Helper and spaghetti with jarred sauce with the meat already in it. {Not that there’s anything wrong with those things, they just aren’t what you would call fancy cooking!} 

Well, let’s just say that my cooking has definitely improved. Thanks to many, many phone chats with my momma and advice from my friend Krista who was a great cook when we met, our weekly menu has changed over the last ten years. Those two have taught me A LOT. {Krista will still laugh at me about the things I didn’t know. But it’s ok because I still make fun of her for calling a flour tortilla a tortilla shell! Those Southerners…} Anyway, thanks to my mom and Krista, I have many go-to recipes {around 40 of them} that we rotate through our menu. Then I throw in at least a few new recipes a month, too. I have my favorite cookbooks and my go-to food blogs where I’m always finding new ideas.

Most of the meals I plan are somewhat involved. I love to cook, so I usually look forward to it! But there are definitely those days where I can’t imagine putting together a big meal, and that’s when I dig around the fridge and pantry and put together something like you see above! It’s not always fancy cooking around here, that’s for sure. But you know what? That dinner was a big hit at the Clemens’ house, and it took 20 minutes to throw together {and almost NO clean-up too!}. That, my friends, is a cooking success!

Here’s a link to the crescent roll hot dogs just in case you’ve never made them! What’s your go-to easy meal? I need some more ideas!


  1. Ashley

    My go to is probably baked ziti (a yummy recipe w/ provolone cheese aka not healthy :-). I also do ham sliders a lot for a fast and easy meal. I put it all together, cover it in the fridge, and then I pull it out and pour the “sauce” over it for cooking. You can pair pasta salad, chips, or fruit w/ it for a meal.
    I would love to hear new and easy recipes…Krista and I share, too! She’s such a good cook!

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