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All Grown Up

   
     
 

If you didn’t survive your late teens and early twenties by living on Maruchan Ramen Noodles, I’m not sure that we can be friends, because obviously you don’t know real suffering.
OK, OK, I’m kidding, but for a lot of us, the Ramen life was real. It is cheap, easy to make and fast.
But y’all, this is not how ramen is supposed to be. It’s actually supposed to be filled with real chicken! And veggies! And with a minimum amount of preservatives and sodium!
I know right? Who would have thought it?
Nearly ever region of Japan has their own variation of ramen. Different broths, meats, seasonings and toppings, most of which would be local to the area.
I found a really easy recipe that is only a bit more difficult and time consuming than buying those cheap ones from the grocery store. It’s also a ton more satisfying and considerably more adult!
This recipe is also a great alternative on cold nights to traditional chicken noodle soup.
Easy Spicy Chicken Ramen
Ingredients:
• 9 ounces ramen noodles
• 1 quart chicken stock
• 2 cups water
• 1 cooked rotisserie chicken, picked from the bones
• 2 cloves garlic, grated
• 1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated
• 2 tablespoons soy sauce
• 2 tablespoons sriracha sauce
• 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
• 1 handful spinach (optional)
Toppings:
• Dried seaweed
• Scallions
• Soft-boiled egg
• Sriracha sauce
• Sliced Thai chilies
Directions:
Mix all of the ingredients except the noodles. Bring to a simmer.
Meanwhile, bring some water to a boil. Boil the ramen for 3 minutes until tender and strain.
Add the noodles into your bowls and ladle broth on top.
Top with toppings before serving.

Since we are taking the food we grew up on and making it a bit more adult, how about some grown up Hamburger Helper? I was a little skeptical of this recipe, as I don’t know that I had ever actually eaten Hamburger Helper prior to this, but hey, I’ll give most things that aren’t fish a shot. This actually turned out really good and is quick and easy for those busy nights!

Easy Mississippi Beef Pasta Skillet
Ingredients
• 1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef
• 1 cup chopped onions
• 1 teaspoon dried dill weed
• 1/2 teaspoon paprika
• 1 1/2 cups beef flavored broth
• 1/2 cup hot water
• 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
• 1 box Betty Crocker™ Hamburger Helper™ beef pasta
• 1/4 cup sliced pepperoncini peppers (from 16-oz jar), drained
• 2 tablespoons ranch dressing
• 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley leaves
Directions:
In 12-inch nonstick skillet, cook beef and onions over medium-high heat 7 to 9 minutes, stirring frequently, until beef is thoroughly cooked; drain.
Stir in dill weed, paprika, broth, hot water, whipping cream and uncooked pasta and sauce mix (from Hamburger Helper™ box). Stir in pepperoncini. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 11 to 14 minutes, stirring occasionally, until pasta is tender.
Remove from heat. Drizzle with ranch dressing; top with parsley.