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Hi! I’m Melissa

When I was young I had wings, but they were taken from me. When I turned 50, I took them back. I’m now a Chef, Photographer, Entrepreneur, and an Artist. This is my diary about mastering midlife & encouraging women to live a fulfilling life at any age. Click here for my About Page.

Tex Mex Minestrone

Tex Mex Minestrone

Hello and welcome, Fall! Fall is “cooking season” which means I break out the big pots and start making heaps of food like this dish, Tex Mex Minestrone. It is Summer nearly year ‘round here in my part of Texas and we appreciate the occasional dip below 70°F (< Winter, ha!) which is a good time to make chili and not feel like I’m being cremated in my own kitchen.

Tex Mex Chili Mac Soup from the lifestyle blog,

This dish is a combination of Chili, Taco Soup and Minestrone with a flavor profile decidedly leaning toward Tex Mex. It’s a quick, one-pot meal that is hearty enough to knock the chill off, leaving you warm with a full tummy. Feel free to sub ground or diced chicken or turkey in place of the beef if you’d like to make it a bit healthier or you can omit the meat and change the broth to vegetable to make it vegetarian.

Melissa, owner of the food and lifestyle blog,


Serves 6-8

  • In a Dutch Oven over med-high heat, brown the beef, stirring often until the meat crumbles and is no longer pink; drain.

  • Add the water and the next 6 ingredients, stirring to combine. Bring to a boil and add the pasta. Reduct the heat to medium and simmer until the pasta is tender, about 8-10 minutes. Add more broth if required.

  • Serve sprinkled with cheese and jalapeños.

1 pound ground beef (or chicken/turkey or omit)

3 cups water

1 (28 oz) can fire roasted crushed tomatoes

1 (15oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup frozen or canned corn, thawed and drained

1 cup beef broth (or veg for vegetarian

1/2 cup zesty Italian dressing

1 cup small pasta shells

1 cup shredded Monterrey Jack or Pepper Jack

sliced jalapeños for serving (optional)

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