In the meantime, we have discovered that our old luxurious evenings are no longer an option to make fun meals together. Nope, them meals got to do all the cooking by themselves.
So we called our Crock-Pot over to rescue the day. William spent about 5-10 minutes throwing all the ingredients for taco soup guts into the Crock-Pot, turned it on low, and let her cook herself perfect while we raced around at work and school all day. We just finished a delicious dinner that took about 15 minutes to assemble. Yep, that’s what you gotta do in college—make it fast but make it good.
My cookbook, Cooking Through College, has the Taco Soup version of this delicious meal…but here is our version of Super Awesome Taco Salad in the Jackson family.
Makes 5–6 servings | Time: 3 hours on high/6.5-7 hours on low
2 large chicken breasts, frozen
1 (14.5-oz.) can Mexican stewed tomatoes, squished
1 (15-oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15.25-oz.) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 (6-oz.) can black olives, sliced
1 (64-oz.) jar salsa (I use Pace mild or medium.)
1 avocado, pitted, peeled, and diced
Crema or sour cream
1 Roma tomato, diced
Head of lettuce, sliced
1 bag tortilla chips (Doritos are also amazing…)
1. Dump frozen chicken, squished Mexican stewed tomatoes, black beans, kidney beans, sliced olives, and salsa in a Crock-Pot. Turn Crock-Pot on low and leave for 6.5-7 hours.
2. After 6.5-7 hours, shred chicken. Return chicken to Crock-Pot and mix. Drop temperature to low.
3. Pile chips and lettuce on your plate. Add the taco guts then sprinkle with cheese, avocado, and tomato. Top everything off with a light drizzle of crema (Mexican Table Cream).
4. Don’t eat yourself into a food coma. You still have homework to do.
Now remember, this meal is not meant as a one-timer. This is a several-times-this-week meal or I’m-going-to-freeze-the-taco-guts-for-later meal. I figure, if I am going to make the effort to make food, I want to make lots so I don’t have to do it very often. Because let’s be real—time is precious.
P.S. The paper plate in the picture is included on purpose--to show how we minimize dishes on busy nights. And/or it could be that we have hundreds of paper plates left over from our two book launches and our apartment is too small to keep them nicely in a cabinet...so we use them every night...and I'm a little lazy sometimes...