We love good food in our home. I love to cook and bake for my family. I have shared recipes and pictures of our yummy goodness on different venues. Many have suggested a blog to share the recipes.

*DISCLAIMER* I am not a professional cook, photographer or writer!

I will always try to give credit for recipes. Many I have collected over the years off of TV, various websites, friends and family.

Please leave comments if you try a recipe or share variations of things I post, I always love learning new tricks of the trade.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Hawaiian Meatballs

With all the different things that I choose to be involved in, many include events that end up being potlucks. I don't always have time to hang out at home and create something magnificent. I also am not the type of person who is okay with stopping by the store and picking up something from the deli (not that there is anything wrong with that!) I try to have things on hand in the cupboards or freezer that I can throw together to create something yummy.

Tonight I had a "coffee" for our unit and it was potluck so I threw ingredients together for Hawaiian Meatballs. I got lots of compliments on them.

Hawaiian Meatballs
1 can (20 oz) unsweetened pineapple chunks, undrained
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1 package (32 oz) frozen, fully cooked homestyle meatballs
2 medium green peppers, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 jar (10 oz) maraschino cherries, drained
Hot cooked rice, optional

1. Drain pineapple, reserving juice in a 2-cup measuring cup; add enough water to measure 2 cups.

2. In a small saucepan, combine brown sugar and cornstarch. Gradually stir in the pineapple uice mixture until smooth. Stir in vinegar. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.

3. In a 3-qt. slow cooker, combine the meatballs, peppers and pineapple chunks. Stir in pineapple juice mixture. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or until heated through and peppers are tender, adding cherries during last 30 minutes of cooking. Serve with rice if desired.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

No Bake Protein Bars

A friend of mine on FB shared this recipe and I thought I'd give it a try. My boys enjoy protein bars on occasion but I'm always hesitant to buy them because they can be pretty pricey. Now, some of the ingredients in this recipe are a bit pricey but it's all natural so at least I know what is in them when I make them. My family really enjoyed this recipe.

No Bake Protein Bars


  • 2 Cups Oats
  • 4 Scoops Protein Powder (we used French Vanilla flavored but I say be adventourous and try different flavors)
  • 2 Tbs Ground Flaxseed
  • 1/2 Cup Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1/2 Cup Water
  • Optional: Almond Butter
  • Optional: Ground Pecans


1) Mix dry ingredients together - Oats, Protein, Flaxseed
2) Mix in Natural Peanut Butter, then Water
3) Mix well, will be clumpy and take awhile (trust me when it says mix well and it will take a while...use something sturdy to mix)

Line 8x8 glass pan with aluminum foil, then use your hands to pack the mix into the pan.

Spread a light layer of almond butter over the top
Sprinkle ground pecans over the top of the almond butter

Place into the freezer for 35 minutes

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Easy Bread Pudding

My husband loves bread pudding...I do not. I have issues with texture and bread pudding is not a texture I enjoy. We had some leftover hot dog buns from our Boy Scout Court of Honor and we didn't want them to go to waste so he turned them into bread pudding. I found this recipe at AllRecipes.com

Kevin tweeked it a bit and then made caramel to pour over. He was very pleased with the results!

Easy Bread Pudding


  • 6 slices day-old bread (he used one package of hot dog buns)
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup raisins (optional)
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups milk
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
He added about 1/2 teaspoon of orange zest and 1/2 teaspoon of chili cocoa powder.


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Break bread into small pieces into an 8 inch square baking pan. Drizzle melted butter or margarine over bread. If desired, sprinkle with raisins.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla. Beat until well mixed. Pour over bread, and lightly push down with a fork until bread is covered and soaking up the egg mixture.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until the top springs back when lightly tapped.

Caramel Sauce


  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 6 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream


1 Heat sugar on moderately high heat in a heavy-bottomed 2-quart or 3-quart saucepan. As the sugar begins to melt, stir vigorously with a whisk or wooden spoon. As soon as the sugar comes to a boil, stop stirring. You can swirl the pan a bit if you want, from this point on. Note that this recipe works best if you are using a thick-bottomed pan. If you find that you end up burning some of the sugar before the rest of it is melted, the next time you attempt it, add a half cup of water to the sugar at the beginning of the process, this will help the sugar to cook more evenly, though it will take longer as the water will need to evaporate before the sugar will caramelize.

3 As soon as all of the sugar crystals have melted (the liquid sugar should be dark amber in color), immediately add the butter to the pan. Whisk until the butter has melted.

4 Once the butter has melted, take the pan off the heat. Count to three, then slowly add the cream to the pan and continue to whisk to incorporate. Note than when you add the butter and the cream, the mixture will foam up considerably. This is why you must use a pan that is at least 2-quarts (preferably 3-quarts) big.

5 Whisk until caramel sauce is smooth. Let cool in the pan for a couple minutes, then pour into a glass mason jar and let sit to cool to room temperature. (Remember to use pot holders when handling the jar filled with hot caramel sauce.) Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Warm before serving.

Makes a little over one cup of sauce.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Salad Olvia

A friend of mine shared this recipe with me when I was stationed in Korea. I had just had Neil and was on maternity leave when she called and asked if she could come visit me and bring me lunch. I said sure. She came over with this very yummy cold potato/chicken type salad. Shirin was originally from Iran and she told me that this was a dish they would make to bless new friendships. She served it on a fresh baguette with tomatoes. It was so good and over a decade later it is still one of our favorite dishes (I say that a lot...what can I say we love food in this house). My boys love this, I make a huge bowl (I mean HUGE) and it never sticks around for long. I try to carry on the tradition and make it when I meet someone new.

I already had the recipe on a recipe card, so just click the image to make it bigger and you can actually just print it if you want.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Cookie Apple Cobbler

I love this simple recipe! It's a family favorite and so easy. I was introduced to this by my friend Heather who was my neighbor at Fort Riley. She made it for a party she had at her house and I was hooked! I love how simple it is and how yummy. You can certainly use whatever type of apple you want but I love the tartness and firmness of a Granny Smith. If you have a wonderful sugar cookie recipe you can use that or use refrigerated or even the package stuff. Seriously, whatever makes you happy! It all depends on my time and my mood as to what I use on any given day.

Cookie Apple Cobbler

6 cups apples (peeled, cored, sliced)
1 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon All-spice
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 package sugar cookie dough or your favorite sugar cookie recipe

Topping: 2 tablespoons sugar - 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Combine apples with brown sugar, flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, all-spice and lemon juice. Place into baking dish. Spoon cookie dough over apple mixture.

Combing topping and sprinkle over cookie dough. Cook 35-45 minutes or until top is golden brown.

Serve alone or with ice cream!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

CrockPot Ribs

Can I just tell you how yummy and simple this is to do! Now I have made CrockPot Ribs a couple different ways. This works for beef or pork ribs, either way they come out deliciously tender!

One is just throwing them in the crockpot, seasoning with salt and pepper and whatever else tickles your fancy (personally I think you can never go wrong with just S&P). Set the crockpot on high for 4 hours or so, adding whatever BBQ sauce you want during the last hour or hour and a half. I said cook on high for 4 hours but I'll be honest here, I like to cook on low for a long time to let it get it nice and tender. There are lots of great BBQ sauces out there (today the hubby and I bought Apple Butter BBQ sauce at a Farmer's Market, can't wait to try it out on something) Oops sorry, got sidetracked (did I mention how yummy that BBQ sauce was!). Anyway, you can use storebought or make your own (I'll post a quick recipe for BBQ sauce at the end).

My friend Aubri told me how she does her ribs and this is pretty much how I did it today. (Hope you don't mind me sharing Aubri!)

"Put them in the oven on a cookie sheet for 25 min. or so, to get them browned. I sprinkled steak seasoning on them first. Then I just put them in the slow cooker for 4 hours on high, and put famous dave's bbq sauce on them 1 hr before they were done. yum-0 A real man pleaser, lol."

I didn't use Famous Dave's BBQ...at this moment I don't even remember what kind I used but it was good. Sometimes I use a sweeter sauce, others a more smokey and occasionally I'll even use something spicy. It's all up to what makes you happy! And as I mentioned before, you can even make your own (my husband LOVES making his own sauce).

Quick and easy BBQ sauce!
  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1 cup chili sauce
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 dash hot sauce
In a medium bowl, mix together the ketchup, chili sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, oregano, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and salt and pepper. Place ribs in slow cooker. Pour sauce over ribs, and turn to coat.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Homemade Granola

To go along with the Homemade Granola Bar recipe I just posted, I thought I'd share a granola recipe as well. I combined a few recipes to come up with this. The fun part about making your own granola is that you can add whatever you want!

I shared this recipe and had someone ask me if they could make it for a diabetic. You sure can! Try using raw honey and Splenda (remember only use half the amount of Splenda when replacing it for regular sugar).

Homemade Granola

2 cups rolled oats
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon Canola oil
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup chocolate chips (because I have boys who love a little chocolate, lol)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, toss the oats with cinnamon and salt.

In a medium bowl, stir together the oil, honey, brown sugar, and vanilla. Whisk until completely combined.

Pour the honey mixture over the oats mixture and use your hands to combine them. Gather up some of the mixture in each hand and make a fist. Repeat until all of the oats are coated with the honey mixture.

Pour the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Spread it out evenly, but leave a few clumps here and there for texture. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and use a metal spatula to lift and flip the granola. Sprinkle the nuts over the granola and return the baking sheet to the oven.

Bake for 5 minutes, then remove from the oven and use a metal spatula to lift and flip the granola. Return the baking sheet to the oven. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven. Let cool completely.

Sprinkle the dried cranberries and chocolate chips over the granola and use your hands to transfer it to an airtight container. The granola will keep for 1 week.

A few extra tips for substitutions or add ins.

rolled (old fashioned) oats
ground flax seed
wheat germ

sunflower seeds
pumpkin seeds
sliced almonds

dried cranberries
flavored Craisins
raisins, brown or golden
other dried fruits (banana chips, dried blueberries, etc)

brown sugar (light or dark)
maple syrup
agave nectar
shredded coconut

pure vanilla extract
other extracts such as almond, lemon, cherry, etc
spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, etc)

Homemade Granola Bars

My kids LOVE these and so does my husband. I often make them when he is headed off to some training so he can have something healthy to snack on.

The fun part of this recipe is that you can add whatever you want to them. Where it says 1/2 cup chocolate chips/peanut butter chips you can change it to whatever you want. My favorite to make are with craisins, flax seed and almond slivers. The boys love theirs with peanut butter or chocolate chips. So really whatever makes you happy!

Homemade Granola Bars

* 2 cups rolled oats
* 1 cup whole wheat flour
* 1/2 cup chocolate chips (can sub dried fruits for the chocolate and peanut butter chips, whatever makes you happy)
* 1/2 cup peanut butter chips
* 1/2 cup brown sugar
* 1/2 cup wheat germ
* 1 tsp cinnamon
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 1 egg, beaten
* 1/2 cup honey
* 1/2 cup canola oil
* 2 tsp vanilla extract

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 13 baking pan with foil and spray with cooking spray.

Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a small bowl, mix together the wet ingredients. Pour the wet mixture into the dry and mix well (it’s easiest to just use your hands). Pat the mixture out into the foil lined pan.

Bake for about 15-20 minutes if you want chewy granola bars or for 20-25 minutes for crunchy granola bars. When the edges start to brown, remove from the oven and let cool for a couple of minutes. Use a pizza roller to slice into bars. Finish cooling completely before removing from the pan or they will break apart.

I am pretty sure I found this recipe online and I apologize I do not remember the site. I always try to give credit and I searched but I guess I never bookmarked the page for this.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Lazy Meatballs

Sometimes we can be so busy and we need an easy but filling meal. This is one of our favorites in our home. We often make it on Sundays so we can come home from church and have dinner ready.

We use our crockpot, 3 cans of spaghetti sauce and a bag of meatballs. We used just over half of this big bag (hey I have 3 boys..we eat a lot, haha). We throw everything in the crockpot and set it on low for about 3 hours. I like to use Traditional flavored and Italian Zesty and Spicy sauces.

Yummy meatballs.
I like to eat mine alone with mozzarella cheese sprinkled on top. The boys like them in sandwiches or over pasta. No matter how we eat it, we always leave the table nice and full.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

One of the things I love best about this recipe is that it is so easy and I always have the ingredients at my house. It doesn't take that long to make and it's a hit everywhere we go.

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

* 3/4 cup butter
* 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 3 cups quick cooking oats
* 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
* 1/2 cup peanut butter (smooth or chunky)

1. Melt butter in a large sauce pan over low heat. Stir in brown sugar, vanilla, and oats. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Press half of mixture in to the bottom of a buttered 8 x 8 dish.

2. In a microwave safe bowl, microwave the chocolate and peanut butter, stirring every 30 seconds until melted and blended. Pour the chocolate peanut butter mixture over the crust, reserving a couple of spoonfuls to drizzle over the top.

3. Sprinkle the remaining oat mixture over the chocolate and peanut butter, pressing gently to form a crust. Drizzle the remaining chocolate and peanut butter over the top of the bars.

4. Refrigerate for 3 hours before cutting and serving.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Snack Tip: Strawberries & Sour Cream

I know that sounds crazy. I don't even like Sour Cream in most cases but everyone else in my family LOVES it. While I was back in Idaho visiting my parents, we went out paint-balling. One of the girls brought out this snack. I thought she was a little crazy but I tried it and it was AMAZING!

Take a strawberry, dip it in sour cream and then sprinkle brown sugar on it. YUUUUUUUUUUMMMY!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Easy Beef & Broccoli

Yesterday was my youngest son's birthday and as is the case in our home, each birthday kid gets to choose dinner and dessert. He chose Beef & Broccoli with Sushi Rolls (not real Sushi, very Americanized Sushi) I found this recipe in one of my old Taste of Home magazines and it is now a family favorite. It's so easy!

  • 1 lb boneless round steak
    • 1 lb charcoal chuck steaks, cut into thin 3-inch strips
    • 1 small onions, cut into wedges
    • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
    • 1/2 cup water, plus
    • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    • 1/3 cup soy sauce
    • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
    • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
    • 2 tablespoons water, divided
    • 3 tablespoons cornstarch, divided
    • 4 cups broccoli floret
    • hot cooked rice, to taste
    Prep: 15 min
    Cook: 10 min


    • In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons cornstarch, 2 tablespoons water and garlic powder until smooth.
    • Add beef and toss.
    • In a large skillet or wok over medium high heat, stir-fry beef in 1 tablespoon oil until beef reaches desired doneness; remove and keep warm.
    *Stir-fry broccoli and onion in remaining oil for 4-5 minutes.
    • Return beef to pan.
    • Combine soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger and remaining cornstarch and water until smooth; add to the pan.
    • Cook and stir for 2 minutes.

    • Serve over rice

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

No Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

These are probably my favorite cookies ever, I seriously have no self control when these cookies are in my house which is why I do not make them very often!

No Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 stick butter
1/2 cup plain or chunky peanut butter
4 Tbsp cocoa
3 cups quick cooking oats
1 tsp vanilla

Boil: sugar, milk, butter and cocoa for 1 1/2 minutes (start timing when mixture comes to a full boil). Remove from heat.

Add: peanut butter, oats and vanilla. Mix until well blended.

Drop by teaspoon (or however big you want them) onto waxed paper and let cool

Friday, May 28, 2010

Chocolate Chip & Bacon Cookies

I know, it sounds crazy and I'm not going to lie, I didn't eat them. My husband however really likes them! He watches a little too much Food Network I think. That combined with high school buddies who think it's awesome to come up with unique ways to eat pork products leaves for trying out interesting recipes.

He has thought about this for years and I've had the recipe printed for a while. I pulled it off a random website that seems to no longer exist. There are lots of other variations out there, but this is what we made today.

Chocolate Chip & Bacon Cookies
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (sometimes I like using almond extract)
  • 1 1/8 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips (you can use any type but using dark offers a nice tasty blend)
  • 5 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled (don't use thick bacon, make sure you crisp it (even crispier than what mine looks like and pat as much grease off as you can)

Cream together the butter and sugar. Mix in the egg and vanilla. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet. Stir in the chocolate and bacon. Scoop dough onto a parchment or wax paper lined cookie sheet and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Spinach Strawberry Salad

I am addicted to this salad lately. My mom called me yesterday and told me that her friend had seen my picture of this salad in my album on Facebook and wanted the recipe.

There are two ways to make this salad, both are yummy. One is the easy peasy way and the other requires a little more time though not much more effort.

The first is a recipe I've had for a while that I printed from Allrecipes.com (my friend Matt reminded me of it not too long ago).

Strawberry Spinach Salad (oh, and I always switch it around, I never say it the same way)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon minced onion
  • 10 ounces fresh spinach - rinsed, dried and torn into bite-size pieces
  • 1 quart strawberries - cleaned, hulled and sliced
  • 1/4 cup almonds, blanched and slivered


  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the sesame seeds, poppy seeds, sugar, olive oil, vinegar, paprika, Worcestershire sauce and onion. Cover, and chill for one hour.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the spinach, strawberries and almonds. Pour dressing over salad, and toss. Refrigerate 10 to 15 minutes before serving.
The easy peasy way of doing it and the way I've been eating it lately and it's so yummy is as follows.

  • 2 bunches spinach, rinsed and torn into bite-size pieces
  • 4 cups sliced strawberries
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • Brianna's Homestyle Poppyseed Dressing (you can purchase at any grocery store)
Mix spinach, strawberries, almonds together. Pour as much dressing as you would like (it's sweet so start off slow).

One of the things I love about this is that if we don't eat it all (haha, rarely are there leftovers, but IF there are) it holds well and it just as yummy the next day!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Tip: Baking Bacon

You don't have to turn it or deal with spatters.

First, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Line a cookie sheet or baking pan with sides with heavy-duty foil. Arrange the bacon on the pan, side-by side, being sure not to overlap the pieces.

Bake the bacon for 10-17 minutes for thin-cut, or until desired doneness (is that a word?). Carefully remove from the oven, drain on paper towels, and use.

*You can also do this on a broiler pan (which is one of the few kitchen items I don't happen to own) and let the pan catch the grease itself.

Others have said using an oven-safe cooling rack on top of a cookie sheet works well too.

**For an added yummiliciousness (yeah I totally made that up) brush some maple syrup on bacon before baking...sooooooooooooo good!

Snack Tip: Frozen Grapes

Due to rain in our area, ants have decided our kitchen was where they would go to stay dry. Pest Control finally came today and sprayed so I will be back in the kitchen whipping up some yummy goodness.

But here's a simple snacking tip.

My kids love fruit! When I find grapes at a great price, I usually stock up. As much as my boys love fruit, sometimes they just can't eat grapes fast enough so I wash and pull all the grapes off the stems and freeze them. They are a great snack for the kids.

My 14 year old just told me that he shared that idea with some of his friends and they looked at him like he was crazy.

So I'll just tell you like he told them. TRY IT!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Tater Tot Casserole

ALL of the boys in my family really enjoy Tater Tot Casserole. I have to admit it's not my favorite but I'll eat it. We cook it at home and when we go camping in our dutch oven. Tater Tot casserole is pretty versatile and so you can adjust it to your likes. I'm sharing the standard, easy recipe but you can swap out the soups, cheeses and veggies. Most kids love it.

Tator Tot Casserole

1 lb. or more hamburger

1 can green beans, drained
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 1/2 cups of Cheddar Cheese (reserving about a quarter cup)
1/3 of pkg. tater tots

Brown the hamburger. Put in casserole or pan in the order given. Salt and pepper to taste. Bake at 375 degrees for about 50-60 minutes. Sprinkle remaining cheese after pulling out of oven.

We know a fellow Scouting family who loves to make a Chicken Tatertot Casserole in the dutch oven when camping out. It is so good! Here is a recipe for the oven but you can surely adjust for the dutch oven.

2 lb. tater tots
4 c. chicken or turkey, cut up
1/2 lb. American cheese
6 tbsp. flour
3 c. milk
6 tbsp. butter
Salt and pepper
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/4 c. minced onion
1 chicken bouillon cube

Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan. Put a layer of tater tots on bottom. Add layer of chicken, then top with grated cheese. Make a sauce of remaining ingredients by cooking flour, butter and milk together. When thick, add soup, onion and bouillon. Pour over contents in casserole. Bake 40 to 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Cake Mix Cookies

(White Cake Mix with Sprinkles)

I first heard of Cake Mix Cookies back when Daniel was a baby and we were on WIC. Each month they would give out recipe cards and this was one of them, I still have it in my recipe box. These cookies are so easy and so yummy. They even have them in the Bear Scout book as a recipe for the boy to make. These cookies come out so soft, chewy and so good. Whenever we take them anywhere, they are always a hit with few crumbs left behind.

You can use whatever kind of cake mix and add-ins you like. Some of our favorite combinations are Devil's Food with mint chips, White Cake with sprinkles, Red Velvet with Cream Cheese frosting, Chocolate with toffee chips. Oh yeah, the possibilities are endless!

Cake Mix Cookies

1 package of cake mix (any flavor)
1 large egg
1/4 cup of oil
1/4 cup of water
1 cup of chopped nuts, raisins, oatmeal, coconut, chocolate chips, M&M'S® etc. (anything you like in cookies)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Combine cake mix, egg, oil, and water. Beat until well blended. Stir in remaining ingredient(s).

Drop by teaspoon about 1 inch apart onto greased cookie sheet.

Bake for 15 minutes or until done.

My oldest son made Red Velvet Chocolate Chip Cookies tonight

My youngest was the taste tester

The thumbs up!!

This one is about to go in my mouth!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Monte Cristo Sandwiches

We pulled this recipe out of our Pampered Chef Casual Cooking cookbook! It's yummy and versatile. You can have it for breakfast or you can serve it for dinner like we did. We paired it with a Spinach and Strawberry Salad and it was a big HIT!

*We doubled the recipe because I have boys who seem to never fill up! The recipe below is the original recipe which makes 4 sandwiches.*

2 eggs
1/4 cup milk
8 slices (1/2 inch thick) Italian bread
8 slices (1/2 oz each) Swiss cheese
6 ounces thinly sliced deli ham or turkey (or both like we did!)
1 Tbsp butter or margarine
Powdered sugar (optional, unless you live in my house)
1/2 cup strawberry preserves

1. In shallow bowl combine eggs and milk, whisk until smooth. Dip one side of 4 bread slices in egg mixture. Place egg side down on a plate or cutting board (a large cutting board works best).

2. For each sandwich, place 1 cheese slice on bread. Top with 1 1/2 ounces ham (or turkey or both) and additional cheese slice. Dip one side of remaining bread slices in egg mixture; top sandwiches, egg side up.

3. Melt butter in a pan or a griddle over medium heat. Cook sandwiches about 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown. To serve, sprinkle sandwiches with powdered sugar, if desired and serve with strawberry preserves for dipping.

YUM! Enjoy!

Armed Forces Day: Patriotic Drink

Today is Armed Forces Day. Check out my family blog if you want to know the history behind it.

We decided to have a patriotic drink to celebrate! I found this in a Family Fun magazine years ago.

You'll need:

Cranberry juice
Blue Gatorade
Lemon-lime soda

  1. Fill a clear glass with ice cubes. Pour the drink with the most sugar (check the nutrition label) into the glass. For our red, white, and blue recipe, start with the cranberry juice.
  2. Very slowly add a beverage that contains less sugar -- in this case, Frost Glacier Freeze flavor Gatorade. Be careful to pour it onto an ice cube -- not directly into the other drink -- to keep them from mixing.

  3. Use the same technique to add a layer of lemon-lime soda (many people use Diet for this but I can't stand the taste of diet and the regular works just as well).

Enjoy and be sure to toast our amazing men and women who serve our nation willingly!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Michael's Pepperoni Pizzadillies

Michael likes to snack..snack..and snack so this was a great dish for him to choose. We pulled it out of our Pampered Chef Casual Cooking cookbook.
4 large flour tortillas
8 oz Italian blend cheese
1 tsp oregano
30 slices pepperoni
1 tomato chopped
mixed veggies (green peppers, onion, olives, mushrooms, etc) we used olives and mushrooms
1/2 cup warm marinara sauce

In small bowl, mix cheese with oregano. Place on tortilla on a flat surface. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of cheese mixture on tortilla. Top with half the pepperoni, sprinkle some of the mixed veggies. Sprinkle another 1/2 cup of cheese mixture and place another tortilla on top. Heat a griddle or large frying pan, spray with non-stick cooking spray. When pan is heated, place tortillas on the pan, heat until cheese is starting to melt and outside of tortilla starts to brown. Flip over and heat until all cheese is melted and both sides are toasted. Serve with warm marinara sauce. Ingredients make two Pepperoni Pizzadillies!

Doesn't he look like a true chef, hahaPreparing to serve.
Both brothers give the thumbs up!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Neil's Saucepan Spaghetti

All three of my boys love to be in the kitchen but I think Neil is the real budding chef. He is always wanting to help out to feed our family.

This is one of his meals he enjoys making for our family.

Saucepan Spaghetti
Better Homes and Garden New Junior Cookbook 1989 Edition

1 lb ground beef or ground turkey
2 1/2 cups water
1 15 oz can of tomato sauce
1 tablespoon dried minced onion
1 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed
1/2 teaspoon dried basic, crushed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
6 oz Spaghetti

Grated Parmesan Cheese

1. Brown meat, drain when finished.
2. In 3 quart saucepan add meat, water, tomato sauce, onion, oregano, basil, salt, garlic powder and pepper. Turn burner on high and let mixture bubble. When bubbly break the spaghetti in half, add to saucepan. Turn the burner to low and let simmer about 30 minutes. Stir the spaghetti often.
3. When spaghetti is done, serve with Parmesan cheese and garlic bread.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Daniel's Lickety Split Lasagna

My kids love to help out in the kitchen. Daniel especially loves to cook. Here is his recipe he picked out from our Better Homes and Gardens New Junior Cookbook, 1997 Edition.

Lickety Split Lasagna

1 lb ground beef or ground turkey
1 can spaghetti sauce
lasagna noodles
1 1/2 cups cottage cheese
1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese (optional)...(unless you live in our house)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees!
1. Brown your ground beef, drain and put back in your skillet.
2. Put one cup of your spaghetti sauce in bottom of your pan
3. Add remaining spaghetti sauce to your meat and stir until hot.
4. Place 3 lasagna noodles on top of spaghetti sauce that is on bottom of pan.
5. Scoop 1/3 of meat mixture onto noodles
6. Spread 3/4 cup of cottage cheese on top of meat mixture
7. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese on cottage cheese.

8. REPEAT steps 4, 5, 6, 7

9. REPEAT steps 4 & 5, finishing this top layer with the rest of your mozzarella cheese.
10. Cover your baking dish with foil.
11. Bake in oven for 1 hour.
12. Clean up utensils used while waiting for lasagna to bake.
Take lasagna out of the oven and let sit for 15 minutes with foil still on. Throw in garlic bread while lasagna rests.Dinner is served!