Top Posts of 2015
I always love reflecting back on the year. My family still has not slowed down a bit! We are going and going bouncing around to various activities mostly gymnastics, soccer and volleyball. Haley had another minor brain surgery (so much better then the first) but the results were not great so we have some decisions to make. Once again I learned brain tumors are not fun and I will be an advocate for her my entire life. But I get to learn so many new things that I never would have learned. I am SO ...
Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts
My Grandma came into town this Christmas and make these Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts. I love spending time with my Grandma and my kids love playing with their Great Grandma as well. She is willing to try just about anything! My Dad got her out snow shoeing! How great is that! Grandma made these as part of a dinner one night instead of an appetizer, but either way it is an easy recipe with 3 ingredients; bacon, water chestnuts and honey BBQ sauce. A few years ago my Grandma made a cookbook ...
Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Roasted Brussels Sprouts are created in the oven until they are carmelized. This easy recipe makes the perfect side dish. Cut each sprout in half and cut out the choke which is the bottom inner part,see the "v" cut in the picture. Add the halved sprouts to a bowl with the remaining ingredients to season them before placing them on a lined baking sheet. Make sure each half is placed cut side down to achieve maximum carmelization. When the sprouts are brown and crisp they are done and ready to ...
Bacon Deviled Eggs
Bacon Deviled Eggs is a twist to the classic. This easy recipe adds in bacon, hot sauce and jack cheese. Whenever I make these they go very fast. This is a great appetizer for New Years, the Super Bowl, Easter, Summer BBQ's or Christmas. To make this recipe even simpler use bacon bits instead of frying and crumbling your own.
I love filling a zip top bag with the egg mixture and then cutting the corner to pipe the filling into the egg white cups. You can use a piping tip, just make sure ...
Butterscotch Fudge with Pecans
We love all types of fudge! This Butterscotch Fudge got the stamp of approval from my mom this Christmas season. This is a soft fudge which means it will melt in your mouth. The pecans give a contrast to the smoothness of the fudge. My kids love to help create this recipe. They stir and stir while the ingredients boil, then watch as the butterscotch chips melt away before adding in the pecans and vanilla. Package this easy recipe for friends or neighbors for a special treat. If you love fudge ...
Loaded Baked Potato Casserole
Loaded Baked Potato Casserole is a favorite Sunday side dish. It is an easy recipe to put together with bacon, cheese, green onions, potatoes and more. I love baked potatoes all loaded up but I have discovered they are not kid friendly. Whenever we have them my kids need help making their own so it is a lot of work. This Loaded Baked Potato Casserole has all the toppings mixed in before placing it on the dinner table. Everyone can serve themselves and eat right away.
Just a few tips:
Lemon Pepper Green Beans and Potatoes
Lemon Pepper Green Beans and Potatoes are surprisingly easy to put together. I love this easy recipe because I steam the beans and the potatoes separately in the microwave at the same time I'm making the sauce. Then all I need to do is toss it all together gently and it is ready to serve. My mom showed me these really neat Steam Cooking Bags. So many side dishes can be cooked in them. It is easy to scale for however many you are serving. We reuse the steam bags a few times to get more use out ...
Vanilla Peppermint Hot Chocolate
Snow is so fun to play in but having Vanilla Peppermint Hot Chocolate to warm me up is exciting too! Yesterday we woke up to a winter wonderland. Everything was covered in inches of snow. Throughout the day we still had snow flurries but then it became heavier. We woke up again to inches of snow today. As fun as it is to go outside and play in all that snow it is also fun to come inside and warm up with some vanilla peppermint hot chocolate. This easy recipe comes together quickly. The half and ...
Kitchen Gift Ideas and Giveaway Winners!
As much as I love spending time in the kitchen there are a few things I really like which make prep work and clean up much quicker. These would make for great Christmas gift ideas.
Reynolds Slow Cooker Liners - My mom has been using these for years! Place a liner in your slow cooker (one size fits most), use non stick spray and then add your food. When your meal is finished just throw the bag away and wipe down the crock pot. It is as simple as that!
Strawberry Slicer - Cut the ...
Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge
We love fudge when it gets close to Christmas time. Christmas candy and treats are the best. Some of our favorites are Candied Pecans, and Eggnog Cookies. My 7 year old has been asking to make this easy recipe since the middle of November. Peanut butter is also a favorite flavor among many in my home. Combining the two we came up with this peanut butter fudge that is going to be just as requested as our plain chocolate fudge. It is so smooth and soft. It is hard to eat just one piece. Package ...
Christmas Recipes and Neighbor Gifts
I'm starting to get knocks at my door with friends delivering gifts. This year we are giving homemade vanilla in cute little jars. Here is a collection of easy christmas recipes you can make and package up as wonderful neighbor/friend/family gifts.
Candied Pecans - These are always a favorite because they can be eaten alone or are even better on salads or pecan pie.
Eggnog Cookies - These are so moist and packed with flavor. Package them in a cellophane bag or box with parchment paper in ...
Christmas in Color & Easy Christmas Snack Mix
I am so excited to be working with Christmas in Color this year. The creators from the Midway Ice Castles have made something else spectacular this year called Christmas in Color. It is a mile long light show in Kearns, Utah created by world-renowned lighting artist and Utah native Richard Holdman.
The location is literally right next to the Olympic Oval in an empty lot. When we showed up we were asked if we had tickets before getting in line. It is very important to buy your tickets online ...
Chili Cheese Fries
Loaded fries are a favorite of ours. There are so many different ways to do this. One variety we like is Chili Cheese Fries. This is an easy recipe because once the fries are cooked they are transferred to a plate and loaded up with toppings. Don't forget the cheese, lots of cheese because the more gooey the better. We don't eat these all the time so its ok to have some extra cheese! We eat these for a lazy lunch meal or a rare after school snack when we are running out the door for activities ...
I love Thanksgiving because it is a time when we get together with family and friends. We have three Thanksgiving meals that we attend, though not on the same day.
The first meal we have is with our friends sometime in November. We all used to live within blocks of each other but now we are not, in fact I moved the furthest away. This year was our 4th annual Fakesgiving-as we call it. My kids look forward to this meal every year because these are friends we can count on. These are my ...
Christmas is just around the corner and to a few in my family that means Eggnog is in the store. I thought it would be fun to make some Eggnog Cookies. These cookies have eggnog in the cookie as well as in the icing. This easy recipe was quick to prepare and make. I like using a small cookie scoop because not only does it make more cookies but I do not have half eaten cookies laying around to finish later.
Just a few hints:
Make sure you use butter, not margarine.
Dough can be ...
Freeze Green Onions
I love using green onions in recipes but also as garnishes. The problem is I never seem to finish all that I have purchased before they wilt or go slimy.
Did you know green onions can be frozen?
Jelly roll baking sheet
Freezer safe container
How to freeze green onions:
Slice the onions any way you choose.
Lay them out flat on a jelly roll baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Place the baking sheet in the ...
Whenever I make these Candied Pecans we cannot stop eating them. They have a light sugary coating that goes well in a salad on a pie or with candied yams for Thanksgiving. This is an easy recipe to put together. It does take a little time to bake and stir every 15 minutes so the nuts do not burn, but it gives you time to sip some hot chocolate.
Package these delicious candied pecans up and deliver them as thank you gifts or neighbor gifts. Your friends will be asking you for the recipe...
Roasted Balsamic Vegetables
Side dishes are often times over looked, especially at my house. This is an easy recipe but you need to plan ahead to let the vegetables marinade for the best flavor. The balsamic vinegar and the caramelization from roasting adds a sweetness to the vegetables. It is easy to switch out these vegetables for those in season at different times of the year.
Just a few tips:
Lining the baking pan with foil helps with an easy clean up.
Try cooking this in a grill basket.
Go ahead and ...
Crock Pot Baked Potatoes
If you need to have a quick meal when you get home or want to free up oven space for your Thanksgiving, Christmas or Easter meal, cooking potatoes in the crock pot is a great solution. I love using potatoes because they are cheap and can compliment almost any meal. When I think of easy recipes including potatoes I immediately think of crock pot baked potatoes. The potatoes can be prepared in the morning and will be ready for lunch or dinner depending on your setting.
Crock Pot Baked ...
Easy Creamed Corn
Easy Creamed Corn is a favorite side dish. This easy recipe can be made along with the rest of the meal or make it in the morning and throw it in the crock pot to warm and thicken. Bring this to a large gathering to impress your friends.
Just a few tips:
If you want to use frozen corn put it in a colander and run some hot water over it for a minute to thaw.
If you use fresh corn cobs make sure you run the back of the knife over the cut area of the cob to extract the corn juice. It ...
Crock Pot White Chicken Chili
I woke up today with snow falling from the sky. What a good day to make Crock Pot White Chicken Chili. This is an easy recipe where everything can be added in the crock pot, frozen chicken included, turn it on low and let it cook all day. Just before serving pull out the chicken, shred, then return to the crock pot. My kids love adding a few extra ingredients to top the chili in their own bowls. It is a great way to customize the chili to their own tastes. Serve this with some delicious ...
How To Keep Asparagus Fresh
You bring asparagus home from the grocery store but now what? How do you keep it fresh until it is time to cook it? If you wait too long the ends will dry out. You will then need to cut off more of the stem before cooking resulting in less to eat. My favorite recipe is Roasted Asparagus with Parmesan.
How to Keep Asparagus Fresh
Keep the rubber band around the bunch of asparagus to keep it more manageable.
Chop 1 inch off the ...
When you have a great soup or chili on a cold, rainy day all that is missing is a great slice of bread or a fluffy, moist cornbread. This is an easy recipe because it takes 35 minutes from start to finish. The ingredients are common, perhaps already in your pantry. Try out our Ham and Cheese Potato Soup, Crockpot Chicken Taco Soup, or Fresh Pea or Cauliflower Soup.
Just a few tips:
I love using a cast iron skillet for this recipe. Preheat the skillet as you preheat the oven. The ...
Ham and Cheese Potato Soup
When the weather changes and starts to become cold soup is always one of those comfort foods we enjoy. This easy recipe, Potato Soup, is also great to have the day after a big ham meal such as Thanksgiving or Christmas. The leftovers can be chopped and added in to create a delicious soup. My girls always ask for more ham!
Just a few tips:
When I cook bacon I save the bacon grease to use for later. I always have a stash in my freezer! For this recipe I pull out some of that saved ...