'The Pioneer Woman' Ree Drummond Says This Easy Recipe Is the 'Perfect Lunch'

Food Network is home to the best cooking shows on television. Fans love the shows because they add something more than just cooking–the chefs give audiences a glimpse into their real lives, building a connection that was missing in more traditional cooking shows. 

The Pioneer Woman is one of Food Network’s most popular shows. Ree Drummond went from a busy mom blogging about her passion–food–to a celebrity chef who has built an empire. Her television show, cookbooks, and product lines are a huge hit with her millions of fans, and she continues to build that fan loyalty with her delicious recipes and cheerful demeanor. 

Who is Ree Drummond?

Ree Drummond–a.k.a. The Pioneer Woman–is a celebrity chef, food blogger, and photographer. She quickly rose to stardom in 2006, when she started her food blog.

The blog became an instant hit with home chefs everywhere. She invited her audience into her home on a sprawling Oklahoma ranch, sharing her favorite recipes and kitchen tips. 

Drummond was born in Oklahoma. After high school, she moved to LA to attend USC. She had very different career plans at the time–she was going to move to Chicago to pursue a law degree.

However, she met her husband and it was love at first sight. She changed her plans, moving to Oklahoma with her husband. The two now own over 430,000 acres of land and have four children and one foster child. 

The blog was the launching point for Drummond’s success. In 2011, the blog drew more than 20 million views per month, and she was offered her big break: a television show. 

‘The Pioneer Woman’ shows the beauty of life on a ranch

The Pioneer Woman aired on Food Network in 2011. Drummond’s fans were thrilled to get a more in-depth look at the chef’s life—they learned about herding cattle, homeschooling kids, and making meals that please everyone in a big family. 

One of the biggest draws of The Pioneer Woman—like other popular cooking shows—is the unique setting. Audiences enjoy watching because they are swept into a beautiful world that is unfamiliar to them. The old days of cooking shows where a person stands in a kitchen built inside a television studio are gone. Today’s most popular cooking shows are not just about food–they’re also about lifestyles.

An average of 8 million viewers tune in every month to watch Drummond share her kitchen secrets and catch a glimpse of her favorite animals on the ranch. It’s the most-watched show among women between the ages of 25 and 54. In addition to enjoying her recipes and tours of her ranch, her audience absolutely loveS her magnificent kitchen. 

Drummond’s favorite dishes will make your mouth water

Most of the dishes on The Pioneer Woman are delightfully rich comfort foods. In fact, there is one rich ingredient that Drummond loves to use generously–butter. Many of her recipes use a stick of butter or more, like her mashed potatoes. In addition to two sticks of butter, her potatoes have heavy cream and cream cheese. 

Other fan favorites include pulled pork with a sweet sauce made with two cans of Dr. Pepper, enchiladas draped in three different kinds of cheese, and a grilled cheese sandwich with cheddar, caramelized onions, and crispy bacon. Drummond defends her use of heavy ingredients by reminding fans that she’s cooking for a husband and kids who do manual ranch labor for 8-10 hours a day. She also doesn’t serve her family these calorie-laden comfort foods on a daily basis. 

To keep her family full and energized, Drummond creates dishes with plenty of protein and filling ingredients. One of her favorite lunches is chicken salad, one that she refers to as “the perfect lunch,” but her recipe has a few twists. She makes a chunky salad with bacon, bleu cheese, avocado, and sour cream that’s perfect for a deliciously hearty bread. Drummond notes: “This Cobb salad is mixed and stuffed in a sandwich! It’s a hearty bite, perfect for an on-the-go lunch.”

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