Sunday Barbecue and a Giveaway!

For this month’s Hormel challenge, I decided to stick with a barbecue theme. With the weather being so warm, I’ve wanted seasonal meals pretty much every day. It seems like the default meal preparation of choice when having a gathering during the summer months is to fire up the grill. So, that was exactly what I did.

If you remember, I received a pretty sweet goodie bag as a “welcome” to the Hormel Extended Family Food Blogger. Well, they want to offer a Foodosaurus Rex reader a similar goodie bag! All you have to do is leave a comment telling me about your favorite thing to grill (it can be anything)! You have until Thursday at 9pm EST to enter.

On the menu was pulled pork sandwiches, baked beans, and grilled stuffed jalapenos. Of course, this was all cooled down with some of our favorite beers. I grabbed a tub of Lloyd’s pulled pork, and it had enough flavor that was all we needed on the sandwich front. As for the baked beans, I grabbed a can of Bush’s black bean fiesta “grillers.” My fiancé and I were of course drawn to it as soon as we saw mention of black beans, chipotle, and peppers. I’m not a huge fan of “traditional” baked beans so this was a delicious change of pace – I’d definitely recommend them!

As for the stuffed jalapenos… yum. I had tried my hand at them about a year ago with stuffed poblano peppers as well, and had baked them. So, when I saw YumSugar had a recipe for them on the grill, I had to give them a try. Below is the recipe for how I made mine.

Grilled Stuffed Jalapenos inspired by YumSugar
– makes 10 jalapeno halves –

5 large jalapenos, sliced and deseeded
1/3 cup whipped cream cheese
1/4 cup Mexican or taco blend cheese
3 scallions, diced
2-3 Tbsp Panko bread crumbs

1. Preheat grill to medium-high
2. Combine cream cheese, shredded cheese, scallion, and bread crumbs
3. Fill each jalapeno with the cheese filling, trying to fill each one evenly
4. Grill for about 8 minutes, until bottoms are lightly charred (either put them in a gril basket, or use some foil)

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway! Leave a comment about your favorite thing to grill, and do it before Thursday at 9pm EST!

Tea for Two – Giveaway!

Both my fiancé and I are tea fans. Though we don’t drink it regularly, as we’re coffee guzzlers by design, we often enjoy a cup of tea with dessert after dinner, or randomly throughout the day. So, when I was offered yet another Celestial Seasonings Tea Giveaway, I couldn’t resist! [Head down to the bottom of this post for entry info]

Growing up, I didn’t really drink coffee or tea. I remember my parents had an adorable Boston bear mini-mug for me, and whenever they would have tea, they’d make me some too. However, it was always too hot when I tried to drink it, and I’d wind up waiting too long, and it would either be lukewarm or down right cold, leaving it less than desirable to drink. I felt like Goldilocks when it came to my tea as a child; it was either too hot or too  cold, and I couldn’t get it just right.

After abandoning tea for a few years and switching to coffee by my junior year of high school (7:30am start time is just cruel for teenagers), I finally decided to give tea a second shot in college. It came in handy during my junior and senior years when living off-campus our house was usually cold and I couldn’t wear enough layers to stay warm. Now that I can afford to pay my heat bill, I’m still enjoying tea.

As I began to drink tea more and more, I discovered there’s so much more out there aside from your typical black, Earl Gray, English, breakfast, and green teas! I was given two boxes of Celestial Seasoning’s Gen Mai Cha tea to try. I was psyched since I’ve never even heard of that type of tea, let alone tried it. It has just a slight hint of rice flavor combined with the green tea flavor. It’s interesting, and really enjoyable. Though I’m no tea connoisseur, I recommend trying it. Since I ususally gravitate towards sweet and dessert or coffee flavored teas (i.e. your peach, vanilla, etc.), it was a nice change of pace to have a more savory flavored tea. Since I’m always up to try new flavors and styles of tea, I thought you might be also. Enter the giveaway…

One lucky reader will receive the following from Celestial Seasonings:
– Decaf Sleepytime Lemon Jasmine Green Tea
– Tin Tea Caddy
– Magnet
– Lip balm
– Honey sticks

How to enter – do any or all of the following, and leave a comment for each:
1. Simply leave me a comment about anything, or about tea
2. Follow me on Twitter, and/or tweet about the giveaway

You have until Thursday 4/14 at 9pm EDT to enter!

TERRA Blues Giveaway!

I love chips. I mean, how could I not? Potato, corn, tortilla, vegetable… you name it, I’ll eat it in chip form. Except for banana chips, because I despise bananas. So, when I was offered a bag of TERRA Blues Chips to review and then giveaway on the blog, I was all ears!

TERRA Blues chips are made from the blue potato, which has a nutty flavor and a blueish-purple hue. It also has 40% less fat than the leading potato chip (6 grams versus 10 of fat), and they’re pretty darn good! Like most chips, I start eating them, and the next thing I know I look down and the bag is almost empty. Oops…

If you’ve ever flown on JetBlue you’ve likely had them (they’re the official snack of the airline). They’re actually hosting a contest of their own at, where you can enter to win a four day/ three vacation at Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort Villages & Spa for two adults and two children – you better believe I’m going to enter!

Monday (March 14th), is not only Pi Day, but also National Potato Chip Day! So, in honor of that I am giving away a bag of TERRA Blues chips and a coupon for another free bag of TERRA chips, so you can try another one of their yummy options (may I recommend their sweet potato chips – a personal favorite of mine)! You have between now and Sunday 3/13 at 9pm EST to enter, and I’ll pick a winner and announce it on National Potato Chip Day!

Here’s how to enter:
1. Leave a comment telling me about your favorite chip
2. Follow me on Twitter
3. Re-tweet the giveway: @FoodosaurusRex is giving away TERRA Blue chips in honor of National Potato Chip Day!

… If you do more than one of the above, make sure to come back and leave a comment for each!


Tea Time and a Giveaway!

When I was contacted to try some of Celestial Seasoning’s new Antioxidant Max Green Teas, I jumped at the offer! I’m a huge coffee fan, but I’m partial to tea as well. My fiancé and I will oftentimes have tea with our dessert (a cupcake, a cookie, etc.). We have tins upon tins of loose teas, and quite a few tea packets as well. [Scroll down for entry rules]

The package I received came with four full boxes of yummy tea; Blackberry Pomegranate Green Tea, Sleepytime Green Lemon Jasmine, Blood Orange Starfruit, and Dragon Fruit Melon. They all sounded so exotic and fruity, I didn’t know which one to try first! In addition to their delicious flavors, they boast that each serving contains 20% of the daily recommended intake for Vitamin C! I don’t know about you, but in these super cold dreary months, I could certainly use some extra Vitamin C to keep the sniffles away. They are also calorie (the Sleepy time does have some calories) and gluten free, as well as Kosher certified.

Once I opened the package, I was intrigued by the actual tea packets that also included the best sencha brands. They aren’t individually wrapped, rather they come in one big pouch, and are sans strings and tags. According to the information sheet that came with the teas, this allows them to save more than 3.5 pounds of waste each year! And, of course, the packaging is made of 100% recycled materials.

So, onto the flavor! I decided to have a cup of the Sleepytime Green Lemon Jasmine, while my fiancé sampled the Blackberry Pomegranate Green (he’s obsessed with pomegranates). As soon as I put my fiancé’s tea bag in his warm water, I could instantly smell the fruit, and it smelled good! They each only take 2 minutes to steep, which was surprising to us, as all of our loose teas take anywhere from 5 to 8 minutes. Even though that seemed like a short amount of time, it was plenty of time for the tea bags to transfer the flavor into our water. We both drink our tea without any adders, so it was a great way to really get a taste of the flavors. The Sleepytime was the perfect end of the day tea (since it is caffeine free) – the lemon and jasmine were comforting, and the green tea added a nice refreshing quality. My fiancé’s was fruity! When I took a sip I felt like I should have been laying on a tropical island, not in 10 degree weather. The smell and the actual flavor were right on par, and it wasn’t too much – it was just right. I can’t wait to try the other two flavors.

So, now the question is, do you want some of this yummy tea for yourself?! The winner will receive exactly what I got – four awesome teas (20 tea packets in each), of Celestial Seasoning’s Blood Orange Star Fruit Green Tea, Dragon Fruit Melon Green Tea, Blackberry Pomegranate Green Tea, and Sleepytime Green Lemon Jasmine Tea. There are a few ways to enter, and each of the ways will give you an extra entry:

  • Leave a comment here (it can be anything, but something tea related would be nice!)
  • Follow me on Twitter (then come back here and tell me you did)

I’ll choose the winner by Thursday 1/27 at 9pm EST using

And the winner is!

Sorry for the delay in announcing the winner of this awesome giveaway. Unfortunately due to not feeling so hot and a family emergency on Friday morning followed by an Ikea trip and packing all weekend, I’ve been a bit preoccupied!

Courtesy of, I generated a random number for the winner, and that was #6 – Jordan! (I had to clear out my own blog track-back, and counted everyone only once). So, if you can send an e-mail to foodosaurusrex [at] gmail [dot] com, I’ll have to prize pack mailed to you ASAP!

Don’t forget you have until October 11th to enter the RecipeNut contest on their Facebook page, where you can win up to $2,000 in prizes!

I actually have some contents of the pack in the oven right now – I’m making a version of You Are What You Eat or Reheat’s White Trash Puff Balls, and homemade potatchos (potato chip nachos). Stay tuned later this week to see how they turned out!

Giveaway Update!

If you haven’t entered my giveaway yet, you probably should. If you have, you can double your chances of winning here if you head over to RecipeNut’s Facebook page and submit to their contest as well, which could have you winning up to $2,000 in prizes!

So get crackin’ enter my giveaway here, and head to Facebook and enter there as well! If you do enter Facebook’s contest, head over to my original post and let me know!

Entries for my giveaway must be received by 11pm EDT on Friday, but RecipeNut’s is going until October 11th!

Another Foodie Giveaway!

Seriously, blogging rules. I’ve been fortunate enough to have the opportunity for another giveaway! The wonderful Hormel, who also sponsored this giveaway in conjunction with the newly launched RecipeNut are behind this yummy deal [see below]. In addition to the prize pack you can win here, you can also head over to RecipeNut’s Facebook Page to “like” them, and also submit your favorite family recipe with a story behind it and photo, to win $2,000 in prizes! You have until October 11th for the big contest.

The prize pack I’m giving away includes the following:
· Hormel® Always Tender® pork product coupon: Hormel® Always Tender® products are all pre-marinated for superb tenderness, juiciness and flavor, so there’s no prep time and no cleanup required. Available in more than 40 varieties.
· Hormel® Natural Choice® deli meat full value product coupon: Great-tasting, all-natural products you can feel good about eating and serving. Zero preservatives, artificial ingredients or MSG. No nitrites or nitrates added. And they’re gluten free.
· Hormel® real crumbled bacon bits: Hormel® bacon toppings are made from 100 percent real bacon. Add to salads, soups and other recipes!
· Hormel® pepperoni minis: Add zest to a wide variety of dishes with great tasting pepperoni. In addition to perking up pizza, pepperoni is an ideal partner for sandwiches, salads, pasta or nachos and more.
· Hormel® premium chunk chicken breast: Hormel® chunk meats are fully-cooked, one hundred percent real meat perfect for sandwiches, salads, wraps, soups, nachos and quesadillas.
· Hormel® chili with beans: Hormel® chili is made with choice ingredients, blended and simmered slowly in an open kettle to bring out their full flavor and aroma. The result is a rich and hearty flavor chili lovers ask for!
· RecipeNut Oven Mitt

For my giveaway, though, you just need to answer the following two questions:
1. How do you store your recipes?
2. What would you do with this prize pack? (Make a game-watching snack? Bake something and use the oven mitt to keep your hands safe?)

*You have until Friday, October 8th at 11pm EDT to enter!!

I’m wondering about your recipe storage, because I myself have been playing around with a few different things, and am interested to hear what you guys use/do. I also need some ideas for what I can do with my prizes! I’m thinking I’ll try to recreate You Are What You Eat or Reheat’s “White Trash Puff Balls,” and maybe some chili nachos to eat while watching a game – yum!

And the winner is…

Last week I was fortunate enough to have another giveaway on my blog, this time for a TERRA Chips “fire up the flavor” prize pack! I had always thought that anyone would like something for free, but apparently not! While I only had four entries for the contest (insert sad face here), they were all delicious, and I’m probably going to try my hand at each of them. It was a really hard decision, so much so that it took me nearly a day to deliberate. But after a lot of consideration, asking for my fiancé’s opinion and then turning it down, I picked a winner!

Though I didn’t win her giveaway when she offered up a sweet pair of CEP Compression socks, Shelby over at Eat, Drink, Run is the winner of the prize pack! I’ve seen the way she puts together nachos, and my mouth waters every time! A little side note is that my absolute favorite cheese is gouda which I discovered my freshman year at The University of Scranton, and have had a love affair ever since. So, the suggestion of “Fancy Nachos” with the blue potato chips smothered in melted gouda and caramelized onions won me over, big time! Send me a direct message on Twitter or e-mail me at foodosaurusrex [at] gmail [dot] com with your mailing address, and I’ll have the prize pack on it’s way!

Thanks again for everyone that entered, and I’m definitely going to give Jordan’s jalapeno poppers, Lauren’s sweet potato shepherd’s pie, and Sharon’s (Serial Baker) breakfast casserole a try – they all sound delicious!

A review, a recipe, and a giveaway!

A few weeks ago I was offered some bags of TERRA Chips to review then come up with a recipe using one of their types of chips for their Fire Up Flavor program. Plus, I’m able to give one of my lucky readers a Terra Chip prize pack! Scroll down to the bottom of this post (below the recipe) for contest rules and how to enter!

The shipment came with four full sized bags of their chips – original, blue potato, exotic harvest, and Mexican style. I decided to offer up the original styled TERRA Chips at the Wedding BBQ we had last weekend, and everyone devoured them. I brought the blue potato chips to work, and everyone was shocked there was a such thing as blue potatoes! Those were also well received. I kept the exotic harvest for myself, and have been slowly working on them. They are interesting with carrot, squash, and blue potato. Definitely make me feel better about indulging in some chips!

From there I knew I had to come up with a recipe. As soon as I had opened the shipment, I decided to make something Mexican using the “A La Mexican” chips, just on principle that both my fiancé and I devour anything remotely close to a Mexican dish. So, after thinking about it for a few days, I came up with a Mexican styled lasagna!

Before going in the oven...

I decided to put everything in a pie dish, but I think a regular 8 x 11 inch square dish would work well also. Still having the Jamaican hot peppers from when I bought them two weeks ago, instead of using a jalapeno I decided to throw one in, which added a nice amount of heat. I was a bit nervous that the chips themselves would get super soggy with the combination of the sauteed vegetables, salsa, and cheese piled on, but it actually wasn’t soggy at all. They really just tasted like tortillas. Overall I’m happy with the final product! Since we have left-overs, I’m really looking forward to having it for lunch and braging about my creation when everyone can smell it re-heating in the microwave. Yum!

The final product

TERRA Chips Mexican Lasagna
– Serves 4 –

1 bag of TERRA “A La Mexican” chips
1 cup of black beans
1 cup of pinto beans
1 cup of chunky salsa
1/2 medium red pepper, diced
1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
2 cups of shredded Mexican-blend cheese
*your favorite hot pepper, amount to your liking
1 Tbsp taco seasoning
2 Tbsp vegetable oil

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Spray baking dish (8×11 or pie dish) with cooking spray
3. Heat 2 Tbsp of oil over medium heat, add chopped yellow onion, red pepper, and hot pepper. Add taco seasoning and mix well. Sautée until onions are transparent
4. Combine beans and salsa in a medium bowl. Add onion and pepper sautée mix
5. Line bottom of baking dish with a thin layer of chips, top with half of the bean/salsa mixture from bowl, and one cup of cheese. Add another layer of chips followed by the rest of the bean/salsa mixture, top with rest of cheese. Crumble remaining chips on top
6. Place in oven and cook for 10-12 minutes. Let cool, slice, and serve!

As I mentioned earlier, one of you lucky readers will be outfitted with a sweet prize pack from TERRA chips! What is included in this prize pack, you may ask? The prize will be valued at $25 and includes four bags of TERRA Chips, TERRA coupons, a martini glass inspired serving bowl and printed Summer Entertaining Guide! Aside from the giveaway here, they’re also offering first and second place prizes over at their website for the program as well. But let’s be honest, you have a much better shot of winning right here on Foodosaurus!

That being said, here’s what you need to do to enter: Tell me your favorite type of TERRA chip, and how you yourself would use it in a recipe (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, side dish, etc.)! Get creative – I’m looking for more than “I’d dip it in some French onion dip.” You can leave a comment here on this post, and I’ll choose a winner between today, Monday 8/9 and Friday 8/13 (oh boy, Friday the 13th) at 10pm EDT.

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter, where you can get updates on giveaways, recipes, as well as all the foodie (and running) happenings! @Foodosaurusrex