Marlie Scott, SUU News’ partnered food blogger, loves to cook for any occasion, especially holidays. Here are three easy dishes you can make for this upcoming Thanksgiving.
Appetizer: Zucchini Boats
Zucchini is one of Scott’s absolute favorite things to eat, and her zucchini boat is an ideal appetizer for Thanksgiving.
“I love the end of summer/beginning of fall because that’s when we have tons of zucchini harvested and we can eat it any time we feel like it,” Scott said. “Garden (and) farmer’s market zucchini is best for these boats because they’re larger and easier to stuff, but these smaller ones from the grocery store work out just fine.”
Scott tried ground turkey with her example instead of ground beef.
“I did not like it … the texture was different and the taste wasn’t good to me,” Scott said. “My husband liked them, but I decided that I like the ground beef ones a ton better!”
Scott said she hopes you enjoy this recipe and can use up all of your extra garden veggies while they’re fresh!
4 medium-sized zucchini
1/2 pound lean ground beef (or turkey)
1/2 onion, chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic or 2 tsp. garlic powder
3/4 cup diced tomatoes
1 cup cooked rice
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Cook one cup of rice according to directions (1/2 cup dry).
- Preheat oven to 375℉.
- Prepare an 8 by 8 baking dish with cooking spray.
- Cut off 1/4 of the zucchini lengthwise (don’t cut in half, you won’t have enough room for the meat mixture) and scoop out the center pulp. Save about 1/2 cup of the pulp.
- In a large pan, begin cooking beef.
- Add onion, garlic, and salt and pepper to beef until cooked thoroughly. Add more seasoning if needed.
- Add diced tomatoes and saved pulp and cook for about 3 minutes.
- Add rice and mix into the beef mixture.
- Place zucchini in baking dish.
- Fill scooped out zucchini with beef mixture.
- Spray tops with cooking spray.
- Cook for 30 minutes.
- Sprinkle cheese on tops of zucchini and cook for 10 more minutes.
Side: Cooked Carrots
“I love these carrots,” Scott said. “I usually make a large amount to snack on throughout the day and then also to have as a side for dinner. They’re the most simple thing ever.”
According to Scott, this could be one of the most simple recipes. You wash the carrots, and then throw them in the slow cooker. Add some liquid- you can use water, but Scott prefers using chicken broth. Scott adds about one cup, but there is usually quite a bit of liquid to drain at the end. Scott would rather this than them burning. Add salt and pepper, butter, or even brown sugar to the carrots for flavor (don’t do brown sugar if you cooked with chicken broth, only water).
1 bag baby carrots
1 cup liquid (water or chicken broth)
Salt and pepper
- Wash carrots.
- Place carrots in slow cooker.
- Add liquid.
- Cook on low for at least 5 hours or high for 3 hours.
- Drain excess liquid.
- Add desired flavorings.
Dessert: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Growing up in small-town Manti, Scott didn’t have a big bakery in her town. Scott said they had a small one that made rolls and donuts, but that’s about it.
“We had to drive to the next city to the north for basic bakery finds, and their pumpkin chocolate chip cookies were heaven,” Scott said. “My mom and I have this thing where we don’t want to eat a lot of the treats we make or buy, so we break off small pieces of them … and we usually end up eating more than we probably would’ve just by taking a whole piece.”
Scott and her mother always put Saturday aside for cleaning while growing up, and cleaning in the fall was her favorite. Scott said in the fall they’d have a super clean house and her mom would put on a scented candle and have pumpkins decorating their front porch.
“ … My mom would go grocery shopping for the next week and bring us pumpkin cookies that we could eat if we completed our housework for the day,” Scott said. “It’s funny how much you love the little things in life and how they mean the most to you. I hope to be able to bring these things I loved into my own house.”
This recipe is easy, tastes amazing, and would be perfect for a quick dessert for Thanksgiving. Scott gives baking credit and recipe to Cooking Classy.
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup pumpkin puree
2 cups milk chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350℉.
- Prepare cookie sheets by lightly coating them with cooking spray (too much spray won’t be good for the bottoms of the cookies).
- Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt in a bowl. In a mixing bowl (or KitchenAid) mix sugars and oil together. Add egg and vanilla: mix well
- Add in pumpkin puree.
- Slowly add in flour mixture at a low speed.
- Fold in chocolate chips with spatula.
- Drop dough onto cookie sheets (about 2 tablespoon size drops) making 9 cookies.
- Bake for about 11 minutes until tops are solid (you’ll think the cookies don’t look quite finished, but if the tops are solid, you are fine).
- Let sit on cookie sheet for one more minute and then transfer to a cooling rack.
- Store in a closed container.
Click here for more of Scott’s recipes.