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Made From (semi) Scratch: January/February 2022 Recipes

Updated: Mar 24, 2022

Hi y’all! I’m excited to be sharing my Southern shortcut recipes with you. My goal is to help you prepare simple, easy recipes, even faster, so you can spend time with your friends and family.

Mini Chicken and Waffles with Hot Honey checks two boxes, for game day and party food. Fried chicken and waffles is a traditional Southern dish, while hot honey is one of the “hottest” food trends right now. You’ll love this three-ingredient shortcut appetizer made partly with what you may already have in your freezer.

After the past two months of high-fat holiday meals, Quinoa Salad with Egg, Tomato and Corn is a refreshing, protein-rich changeup, especially if you’ve resolved to eat healthier in 2022. I call this my “clean-out-the-fridge salad” because it’s different every time I make it, based on what’s in my refrigerator at the time. If you don’t have quinoa, substitute rice. No chickpeas? Toss in some black beans or black-eyed peas. Add carrots, radishes, cucumbers or peppers, if you like, too.

If you got an Instant Pot for Christmas, try my easy Teriyaki Chicken Thighs. Although teriyaki sauce isn’t Southern, it’s a distant cousin to our familiar barbecue sauce, so feel free to trade out the sauces. If you aren’t a big fan of chicken thighs, legs or bone-in breasts work well, too.

On a sweet note, the first strawberries of the season hit produce aisles around Valentine’s Day, making it perfect timing for Shortcut Strawberry Rhubarb Pie. A refrigerated pie crust gets brushed with a beaten egg to give it that deep, rich golden color and bit of extra crunch that makes it look like it came straight from a bakery. If you don’t have rhubarb, just double the strawberries.

Quinoa Salad with Egg, Tomato and Corn

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

1 (3-ounce) bag boil-in-bag quinoa or 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa

1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained

2 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and quartered

1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or whole, or 1 larger tomato, quartered

1 cup whole corn kernels, fresh, frozen or canned

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or parsley

1 ounce crumbled feta cheese

1/3 cup Greek, Italian, lemon or herb vinaigrette

Cook quinoa according to package directions; drain and set aside. In a large bowl, gently toss together all other ingredients. Stir in quinoa. Serve immediately or allow quinoa to cool and flavors to meld up to 24 hours.

Instant Pot Teriyaki Chicken Thighs

Prep Time: 8 minutes

Pressure Cook Time: 8 minutes (Rise-to-Pressure Time: 12 minutes)

Yield: 4 servings

1 tablespoon olive or vegetable oil

4 large boneless, skinless chicken thighs

2/3 cup water

1 cup teriyaki sauce, divided

1 tablespoon cornstarch, optional

Chopped green onions

In a 6-quart Instant Pot, press Saute button to “normal” heat setting. Add oil when hot, then add chicken and cook about 4 minutes on each side, until browned. Add water and 2/3 cup of the teriyaki sauce, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Place the lid on the pressure cooker. Make sure valve is set to Sealing, not Venting. Set Pressure Cook to 8 minutes on High Pressure. After the pot comes up to pressure and counts down 8 minutes, turn the release valve to Venting to quick-release pressure. Remove chicken to a platter. Stir remaining 1/3 cup teriyaki sauce into liquid in pot. For a thicker sauce, combine cornstarch with 1 tablespoon water until smooth. Push Saute button, and when sauce begins to bubble, quickly stir in cornstarch mixture. It will thicken immediately. Return chicken to the sauce. Serve chicken and sauce over rice and sprinkle with green onions, if you like.


· If using bone-in chicken thighs, add 2 minutes to the pressure-cooking time.

· If you have cabinets above your pressure cooker, use a kitchen towel to divert steam when quick-releasing pressure.

Mini Chicken and Waffles with Hot Honey

Prep Time: 8 minutes

Cook Time: 7 minutes

Yield: 2 dozen

24 frozen white-meat chicken nuggets

24 frozen mini waffles

1/2 cup hot honey

Party picks or wooden toothpicks

Cook chicken nuggets in air fryer or oven according to package directions. Meanwhile, toast the waffles in a toaster or toaster oven, then separate with kitchen scissors. To serve, arrange waffles on a platter and top each with a warm chicken nugget. Push a party pick through both the chicken and waffle to secure them together. Drizzle with hot honey, honey or maple syrup. Serve immediately.

Shortcut Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

1 (15-ounce) package refrigerated pie crusts

3 cups quartered strawberries (about 1 quart whole berries)

3 cups sliced rhubarb (1/4- to 1/2-inch-thick slices)

1/2 cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon, divided

1/4 cup cornstarch

2 teaspoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces

1 medium egg, lightly beaten with a fork

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Let pie crust dough sit at room temperature 15 minutes. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, gently toss prepared fruit with 1/2 cup sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice.

Gently unroll one pie crust and smooth out the curled edges. Fit in a 9-inch pie plate, letting edges overhang.

Spoon filling into crust. Sprinkle with dots of butter. Unroll the second crust and smooth out the curled edges with a rolling pin or smooth glass. Place second crust over the filling. Fold edges of the top and bottom crusts under together. To crimp, push the folded edges of dough with your index finger on one hand into your two pincer fingers on the other hand. Brush beaten egg over top of pie; sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar, if desired. Cut two small slits in top of crust.

Bake, uncovered, 45 minutes, or until crust is browned and filling is bubbly. Cover edges with aluminum foil in the last 10 minutes of baking if crust is getting too brown. Let stand at least 1 hour before slicing.


· To get a good slice, make sure to cool pie to room temperature.

· Place pie plate on a baking sheet when baking to catch any bubbling over.

Kathleen Phillips is a Southern shortcut recipe developer and cookbook author who uses her talents to make life easier in the kitchen. Find more of her recipes at

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