weeknight dinner 101- burritos and mixed green salad

Marin Mama dinner, family favorites, Mexican, weekly dinner menu, weeknight dinner 101, weeknight dinners 7 Comments

easy weeknight burritos

So, I’m thinking of starting a new series on the blog called, weeknight dinner 101. It’s something new that I’m testing out and playing around with, so I really want to get your input and see what you all think. I’m not sure how I feel about the formatting of it all. I may just link you all to the actual recipes next time rather than putting them directly into the post, and then just explain all the steps to you. This is my first draft, and first drafts may not always be the best, but you have to start somewhere and give it a shot, right? So, take a look at the post and let me know if you have any ideas, tips or …

quick and easy guacamole

Marin Mama after school snacks, family favorites, gluten free, gluten free, healthy snacks, Mexican, salsas and dips, vegan, vegetarian 12 Comments

quick and easy guacamole

I’ve recently taught a few small cooking classes/demos and come to the realization that a lot of my local readers and friends are on the lookout for simple, tasty, easy, no-fuss recipes to add to their repertoire. Recipes that I think are simple and not exactly blog post worthy, are really what most people want to make, and have time to make. I’ve always assumed that everyone had a go-to guacamole recipe, knew how to make brown rice, or de-stem kale, but I’ve come to realize that not everyone knows these things, and most of the time will not admit it. Hey, I’ll be the first to admit that during the beginning of natural chef school I googled certain unfamiliar …

quick and tasty weeknight beans

Marin Mama dinner, family favorites, how to, meatless meals, Mexican, most popular recipes, side dishes, vegetarian, weeknight dinners 1 Comment

quick and easy weeknight beans

We’re BIG fans of Taco Tuesday in my house, but Taco Tuesday doesn’t have to be on Tuesday, we like burritos, tacos and burrito bowls any night of the week. Since I discovered the best, tastiest and easiest way to cook up brown rice, I find that we’re eating a lot of burrito bowls and burritos, as they’re the perfect thing to whip up on those busy weeknights, and they also make great lunches to pack up for the kiddos. I’m a huge fan of black beans and pinto beans, but don’t always have the time or energy to soak and cook them. Sometimes it’s just easier, and way more convenient, to open up a can of black beans and be done …

one-pan Mexican quinoa wraps

Marin Mama dinner, gluten free, marin mama's favorites, meatless meals, Mexican, Quinoa, vegetarian, weeknight dinners 18 Comments

one-pan Mexican quinoa wraps

I’m SO crazy for these wraps, like totally insanely crazy for these, and I’ve been making them non-stop for the past 3 weeks. Marin mama might need to be committed! They’re honestly my new favorite lunch and/or dinner, and the bonus is that Zoe loves them as much as I do. Yay Zoe! I’m working on Eli, as he likes these wraps, and will totally eat them, but he doesn’t crave them the way Zoe and I do.  I do have to remember that he’s only 10, and his palate hasn’t totally evolved the way Zoe’s and mine has. So Eli, I’ll give you a few more years to be lukewarm to my healthy recipes! Just kidding cutie! These quinoa wraps are awesome for …

sweet potato tacos with avocado crema

Marin Mama dinner, meatless meals, Mexican, tacos, vegetarian 3 Comments

sweet potato tacos with avocado crema . These are the perfect meatless taco!

If you’re looking for a new meatless taco recipe, then you’ve come to the right place! Sweet potatoes make the perfect hearty filling for a taco when you’re craving a meatless meal. Insert them in a corn tortilla with some black beans, cotija cheese and the avocado crema and you have yourself not only a beautiful looking taco, but a tasty and healthy one as well. These tacos are perfect for your next meatless Monday or taco Tuesday, as these tacos can literally can be made in under 30 minutes, making them an easy weeknight dinner. You just prep and roast the sweet potatoes and make the avocado crema (it only takes 5-minutes to make) while they potatoes are roasting.  Easy …

avocado yogurt crema

Marin Mama after school snacks, condiments, dressings, Mexican, salsas, salsas and dips 10 Comments

avocado yogurt crema - Marin mama cooks

Happy Monday peeps! You’re probably confused as you’re getting 2 posts 2 days in a row. You’re most likely saying to yourselves, “what’s up with Marin mama and all of her posting lately, she’s going crazy over there!” Well, I’m not going crazy, but I have been up since 5:00 this morning, and I’m baking a fresh batch of oatmeal cookies, so I figured why not bang out a new post as well. I mean I’m currently in-between jobs, so I feel like I have all the time in the world to bake, post and cook! So, I wanted to get this avocado yogurt crema post out to you all today, as it’s truly a stand alone recipe and pairs wonderfully …

coconut-lime pork tacos

Marin Mama dinner, meats, Mexican, pork, tacos, weeknight dinners 19 Comments

coconut-lime pork tacos

I know the name for these tacos sounds a bit strange, but believe me, they don’t taste strange, in fact they taste pretty darn amazing.  I never thought coconut milk, lime and pineapple juice would be a winning combination with ground pork, but they really compliment the pork, and add a nice tropical flavor. The coconut milk while adding flavor and richness to the ground pork, also helps to keep it moist. These tacos may look complicated, but they’re not.  You can have these on the table in less than 30 minutes, making them another easy weeknight meal.  Who doesn’t love that?  Please don’t be scared off by the long list of ingredients listed below, most of the ingredients are …

chicken enchiladas with tomatillo salsa

Marin Mama chicken, dinner, family favorites, Mexican 10 Comments

chicken enchiladas with tomatillo salsa

I’m so excited to share these enchiladas with you. I made these up last week and my family LOVED them.  I mean John kept exclaiming to me how good they were. These are truly the perfect spring or summer enchilada, because they’re filled with chicken and fresh vegetables and topped with a light tomatillo salsa. The tomatillo salsa is a light and refreshing change from the normal heavy enchilada sauce that you think of when you hear the word enchiladas. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good enchilada sauce, especially the pumpkin sauce I use on our pumpkin enchiladas, but this is a nice change and flavor for spring.  These enchiladias are so light and refreshing that we each …

spaghetti squash tacos

Marin Mama dinner, family favorites, meatless meals, Mexican, tacos, weeknight dinners 36 Comments

spaghetti squash tacos

I know there are many of you who have been patiently waiting for this recipe ever since I showcased it in my weekly menu post last week. Thanks for being so patient and I hope that these tacos make your wait worthwhile. I love it when I find a new family approved and easy weeknight meatless dinner (that was a mouthful). It’s so nice because I try and strive to have at least 2-3 meatless dinners a week, if possible. I want to make meatless nights fun and tasty and full of variety for the family, not boring and something that no one looks forward to. I truly have found the best recipes since I started my meatless search, and …

cilantro lime chicken tacos with mango avocado salsa

Marin Mama chicken, dinner, family favorites, Mexican, most popular recipes, tacos, weeknight dinners 23 Comments

cilantro lime chicken tacos

These cilantro lime chicken tacos are the BOMB!  This is the recipe that I raved about in Friday’s mango avocado salsa post. If you like chicken and tacos, then you will love this recipe. These tacos were actually rated a 10+ in my house.  Everyone had 2 tacos, and some people (I’m not mentioning names) wanted a third. You know when people ask for thirds at dinner, then you have yourself a winner recipe! The chicken is so moist and flavorful from the cilantro lime marinade, and then top it with the mango avocado salsa, and BAMM, you have yourself an amazing taco! This recipe is super easy to make, and pretty much a make-ahead meal, perfect for entertaining. You can marinate …

Paul McCartney’s refried bean tacos

Marin Mama dinner, family favorites, meatless meals, Mexican, most popular recipes, tacos, weeknight dinners 39 Comments

Paul McCartney's refried bean tacos

One of my challenges is to find some new meatless dinner recipes that the whole family will enjoy, besides your typical pasta. Don’t get me wrong, I love pasta, but I want to offer other meatless alternatives for the family.  I’ve been trying to cut back on our meat intake to just a couple of days a week, and it’s been easy to find recipes that I like, but it’s been a bit harder to find recipes that the kids will enjoy as well.   I recently picked a new favorite cookbook called, Meat Free Monday, and came across this refried bean taco recipe from Paul McCartney.  It was said to be one of his favorite recipes, so I decided …

tomatillo and avocado salsa

Marin Mama Mexican, salsas, side dishes 10 Comments

tomatillo and avocado salsa

OK, I tried to make this salsa look attractive and exciting, but hey let’s face it, it’s salsa.  It may not look enticing, but it tastes great.  I’m posting this salsa recipe in celebration of Cinco de Mayo, (which is this Saturday in case you forgot). Are you celebrating Cinco de Mayo?  We’re not exactly celebrating it, but we’re definitely going to consume some Mexican fare and have ourselves a margarita or two. This is the perfect salsa to bring to a party or to serve up at home with your favorite chips and Mexican fare.  It’s got a bit of a kick to it, but not too much where your kids won’t enjoy it.  Eli kept dipping his chips …

chipotle shrimp tacos

Marin Mama dinner, Mexican, sauces, seafood, tacos 11 Comments


My friend Em wrote an amazing post on intuition and health and it got me thinking that we do tend to take our health for granted till it’s not there.  I know that when I’m feeling sick I crave feeling good again, I miss it, and when I do feel good again I feel so grateful and strong.  Health, love, peace and safety are my top priorities in life.  I feel blessed knowing my family is in great health, that I have lots of love and friends in my life and that I have a beautiful home that keeps my family and I warm and safe.  We can all get caught up wishing and looking for the next and greatest …

beer-braised chicken verde tacos

Marin Mama chicken, dinner, family favorites, Mexican, tacos, weeknight dinners 11 Comments


Let’s talk Mexican!  Who doesn’t love Mexican food? I personally don’t know anyone that isn’t fan of Mexican fare.  Living in the bay area we have access to some amazing Mexican restaurants, and we frequent them quite a bit. I love cooking Mexican at home as well, and have really branched out from just making tacos and burritos. I remember when we first moved to California, 15 years ago, the only Mexican food I ate was a bean, rice and cheese burrito.  I’m so glad I got out of that rut and tried some new and exciting flavors. My husband introduced me to this recipe.  I saw the title, beer-braised chicken, and thought beer, really John?  Is this something the kids and I …

chicken enchiladas with pumpkin sauce

Marin Mama chicken, dinner, family favorites, Mexican, weeknight dinners 13 Comments

chicken enchiladas with pumpkin sauce

John and I have become huge fans of Mexican cooking since moving out to California 15 years ago.  The Bay area has so many amazing and authentic restaurants to choose from that we rarely cook Mexican at home.  Now that I am blogging about food, I realize that I need to get out of my comfort zone and try some new dishes.  I recently asked a friend what type of dish she would like to see on my blog next, and she said anything Mexican.  So I listened to her request and perused through my stack of cookbooks for some Mexican inspiration.  I stumbled upon this pumpkin enchilada recipe in my Everyday Food cookbook, and since it was fall, I …