Champagne Salad Frozen Dessert

This recipe was one of my great grandma’s specialties. Champagne Salad was one of the desserts that Granny always made for holidays, it was my favorite! Last Christmas I made these Tea Towels using Granny’s handwritten recipe card for this dessert. After featuring the DIY on the blog, several people asked me about the recipe and I knew that it was one that I wanted to make and share here. This frozen dessert is creamy and full of fruit, it’s perfect for summer (especially if you don’t have an ice cream maker). Make a batch of this dessert, slice it up, then … Continue reading Champagne Salad Frozen Dessert

No-Bake Banana Split Dessert

I’ve had my eye on these mini graham cracker crusts for a while now, waiting for the perfect occasion to use them! I finally bought them to use for these mini desserts for Mother’s Day. This Banana Split Dessert recipe has been a favorite in my family for a while now. It’s a rich and refreshing dessert that has a creamy cheesecake layer topped with fresh fruit. And this is a quick recipe, no baking required. Perfect for Summer! My one complaint about these mini crusts is their package count. They come in counts of 6 and I found that … Continue reading No-Bake Banana Split Dessert

Grilled Eggplant and Squash Panini with Fresh Mozzarella

On our honeymoon, in South Beach, Miami, we stayed at a hotel that offered lots of fresh dishes created with local ingredients. This recipe was inspired by an eggplant and squash panini that I enjoyed there. The fresh mozzarella caught my eye, even though I wasn’t sure what I thought about adding grilled vegetables to a grilled cheese, I decided to give it a try. I was surprised at how tasty it was, a light but filling sandwich. I love making paninis and grilled cheese sandwiches (like my Tomato Mozzarella with Pesto Grilled Cheese and Jalapeno Popper Grilled Cheese sandwiches). This panini is … Continue reading Grilled Eggplant and Squash Panini with Fresh Mozzarella

Fruity Pebbles Marshmallow Treats

It’s been a busy week around here. We’ve been packing, painting and patching nail holes as we’re preparing to move in a few weeks. It’s a sad thing to paint our bold accent walls back to beige. I decided that taking a break to make these colorful treats might make me feel a little bit better! This is the quick, classic rice krispie treat recipe with a fun cereal swap! I added a little Easter twist by shaping some of the treats into an egg shape. Kind of festive! Fruity Pebbles Marshmallow Treats               … Continue reading Fruity Pebbles Marshmallow Treats

Smoked Salmon Philadelphia Rolls

Sushi will always hold a special place in my heart. On our very first date, Drew took me out for my first taste of sushi. I was a little apprehensive, but fell in love immediately… with both sushi and the man that would turn out to be my future husband. My first attempt at sushi making was a huge success! The taste was so good, exactly what you’d find in a sushi restaurant (and so much more economical). The process is a bit time-consuming, but quite easy. And it turned out to be very pretty, if I do say so … Continue reading Smoked Salmon Philadelphia Rolls

Toasted Cheese Ravioli

These toasted ravioli are my new favorite thing! They’re crispy, and delicious with a warm cheese filling… perfect for an appetizer or snack. We enjoyed these so much that I made them two days in a row. The second time I served these toasted ravioli with tomato soup, as a fun alternative to grilled cheese! I’ve seen a simple toasted ravioli recipe bouncing around on Pinterest for quite some time. Vague directions are written under the pin, and the pin doesn’t actually link to the recipe. I decided to wing it and try using Buitoni ravioli from the refrigerated section. … Continue reading Toasted Cheese Ravioli

Ranch Pasta with Smoked Sausage and Mini Sweet Peppers

This bright pasta dish is made with just 5 ingredients, you can have this fresh and filling dinner on the table in under 30 minutes. I created this meal by pulling together fridge and pantry ingredients that I already had on hand and then seasoned it with a packet of ranch mix! The ranch mix makes this pasta so flavorful without the addition of any heavy sauces. Do you have a favorite simple and fast dinner recipe? Feel free to share a link in the comment section below! I love these mini peppers. They’re so sweet and perfect for snacking! They’re … Continue reading Ranch Pasta with Smoked Sausage and Mini Sweet Peppers

Cheesy Pepperoni Skillet-Baked Ziti

I hope that you’ve enjoyed a good week and weekend, I’m happy to be back after a little blogging break. I’ve been busy filling orders over at my Etsy shop and, well, we ate a lot of quick meals and frozen pizza last week! I also try to take advantage of any daylight that I can get when taking food photos, so meals that come together after 6 o’clock often don’t make the cut. When I was growing up, my mom would make baked spaghetti with pepperoni and mozzarella. It was always a family favorite and this baked pizza pasta is my … Continue reading Cheesy Pepperoni Skillet-Baked Ziti

Poblano Chicken Macaroni and Cheese

Did you know that homemade macaroni and cheese is really easy to make? And that real cheese can be turned into a rich and creamy cheese sauce? Homemade macaroni and cheese with chicken makes the perfect warm and filling meal for a cold winter evening. I love adding roasted peppers to homemade sauces like this one, it’s one of my favorite flavors, and it’s incredibly easy to roast fresh peppers at home (even without an open flame). This is a variation of my Chicken Bacon Macaroni and Cheese… you can use the basics of this recipe to make macaroni & cheese with … Continue reading Poblano Chicken Macaroni and Cheese

Crescent Roll Taco Pizza

Looking for a quick and easy meal? Try this Crescent Roll Taco Pizza! It’s a fun twist on tacos that can be made in under half an hour. The slight sweetness of the crescent rolls is a great compliment to the spiciness of the taco meat. My mom used to use these ingredients to make a crescent-topped casserole, it was always a family favorite, I thought it would be fun to try making it in pizza form! Like most of my recipes, this one can easily be altered to include whatever ingredients you like… try it with ground turkey or shredded … Continue reading Crescent Roll Taco Pizza

Easy Pretzel Hot Dog Buns

Pretzel buns are so trendy right now. After enjoying a hot dog on a pretzel bun, I started wondering just how difficult it would be to make them at home. After looking up a few pretzel buns recipes I realized that, while it’s a bit time-consuming, they’re pretty simple to make from scratch! These pretzel buns also have the husband’s seal of approval. We liked them so much that we easily could’ve enjoyed the pretzel buns all by themselves. I can’t wait to use this recipe to make buns for hamburgers or sandwiches next! Try topping your hot dog or … Continue reading Easy Pretzel Hot Dog Buns

Speculoos Cookie Butter Smoothie Recipe

My husband and I finally made our first trip to a Trader Joe’s several weeks ago. Trader Joe’s grocery stores have found their way into North Texas, but the closest one is still 45 minutes from where we live. I was most excited to check out their snack selection (it’s obviously not very practical to go that far to buy refrigerated and frozen groceries). I picked up a handful of items to try out, including Roasted Coconut Chips (large pieces of roasted coconut, flavored lightly with sugar and salt – YUM!) and their famous Cookie Butter. Trader Joe’s cookie butter … Continue reading Speculoos Cookie Butter Smoothie Recipe

Slow Cooker Creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup

I’ve been in a habit of pulling ingredients out of the pantry and throwing together Mexican flavored soups. I start with chicken and broth, then add Mexican spices and whatever spicy ingredients that I have on hand. Several weeks ago I pulled together the ingredients for this Creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup and tossed them into the crockpot. It turned out so deliciously. I love it when a throw-together meal turns into a new favorite! I love spicy soups (especially in the winter!), if you’re a fan of milder things try halving the amount of salsa and rotel in this recipe. And … Continue reading Slow Cooker Creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup

Blueberry Banana Oat Smoothie

With the new year, I’ve decided to try to eat breakfast more often and also eat more fresh fruit. Why not do both at the same time? Smoothies are a great way to do just that! I’ve been noticing the trend of adding oats to smoothies, I was intrigued and had to give it a try. I really liked the addition! It gives smoothies sort of a doughy taste, in a really good way. If you know me well at all, you know that I really dislike bananas, but they give a great texture to smoothies and, when blended with … Continue reading Blueberry Banana Oat Smoothie

Sour Cream Salsa Verde Chicken Enchiladas

This enchilada recipe is my favorite recipe ever. I love a good Mexican or Southwestern recipe and this one is so simple! The creamy salsa verde sauce is made with only 3 ingredients, it’s quick, easy, and so delicious! This is actually the very first recipe that I blogged… I wanted to share it again, for anyone who might have missed it the first time around. You seriously need to try it, it’ll change your life. You can cook the chicken for this recipe however you’d like, my personal favorite is cooking it on low in a slow cooker. The chicken … Continue reading Sour Cream Salsa Verde Chicken Enchiladas

2013 Reader Favorites // Top 15

I decided that it would be fun to end the year with a compilation of the most popular posts of 2013! Thanks to you, these are the most viewed posts to date! Simply click on the post’s title, above each picture, to take a closer look at any of these projects and recipes! Thanks for reading and Happy New Year! Reader Favorites // Top 15 Posts of 2013 15. Roasted Red Pepper Sauce 14. Hot Chocolate Spoons 13. Cilantro Lime Chicken Fajitas 12. Peppermint White Chocolate Pretzels 11. Cookie Dough Sugar Scrub 10. Parmesan Crusted Potatoes 9. Chicken Avocado Lime … Continue reading 2013 Reader Favorites // Top 15

Green Chile Double Cheeseburger

Hopefully this recipe has found you just before your healthy New Year’s resolutions have taken effect. I was inspired to make this after enjoying Whataburger’s Green Chile Double. Whataburger is one of my husband’s favorites and I’ve come to love their specialty burgers! My favorite was their Avocado Bacon Burger which was retired to make way for the new limited-time only Green Chile Double. New favorite! With a little research I learned that this yummy burger is only available in Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Arizona. If you don’t live in one of these states, or if you love this burger … Continue reading Green Chile Double Cheeseburger

Cranberry Bliss Bars

It’s that time of the year again, time for baking and taking all kinds of sweets to Christmas gatherings! If you’re still searching for a holiday dessert recipe, try these Cranberry Bliss Bars: blondies with the addition of white chocolate chips and tart dried cranberries, iced with cream cheese frosting. I love how festive the colors in this dessert are, it’s perfect for sharing! If you hadn’t already guessed, this is a copycat recipe for Starbucks’ Cranberry Bliss Bars. Recipe was slightly altered from here. Cranberry Bliss Bars 1/2 cup butter  1 large egg 1 cup light brown sugar (packed) … Continue reading Cranberry Bliss Bars

Peppermint Candy Christmas Ornaments

Peppermint candies are so festive and classic, no matter what time of the year it is, the sight and smell of peppermints always reminds me of the holidays. Peppermint Candy Ornaments are thrifty and quick to make, they’re a handmade project that is perfect for this time of the year, when we’re all running a little lower on money and time! You could make a dozen of these edible ornaments at just a dollar per bag of peppermints! These melted candies aren’t just for the tree either! Use this method to create cute little edible toppers for cupcakes or brownies … Continue reading Peppermint Candy Christmas Ornaments

Twelve Days of Christmas Cookies : Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies

I’m so excited to be sharing my favorite sugar cookie recipe with you today, on the second day of Twelve Days of Christmas Cookies, an online cookie swap hosted by Dominique of Gusto and Grace! Go check out her Salted Chocolate Pretzel Bark from yesterday, and follow along with us as we share Twelve Days of Cookies! 12 Days of Christmas Cookies Schedule:  December 10- Gusto and Grace December 11- Hello Homebody December 12- Healthy Isn’t Hard December 13- Unconventional Adventures December 16- Blaine Arin December 17- The Well Styled Child December 18- Debbie Allen December 19- Thirty One Ministries Blog December 20- Enjoying the Journey December 23- Simple Pleasures December 24- Styled By … Continue reading Twelve Days of Christmas Cookies : Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies

Hot Apple Cider with Cranberries and Pears

Hot apple cider is a new favorite of mine, after being introduced to it at my husband’s family’s holiday celebrations. It’s a fun, festive drink to enjoy on cold evenings! I really wanted to try something different than the usual citrus infused cider, so I flavored some store-bought apple cider with Bosc pears, fresh cranberries, and a couple of cinnamon sticks. It’s as easy as washing the fruit, placing all ingredients into a pot, and simmering on the stovetop over low heat. Or warm cider in a crockpot. So simple! After posting a photo to Instagram, someone suggested adding tropical … Continue reading Hot Apple Cider with Cranberries and Pears

Best Ever Cheesecake

This cheesecake is perfectly rich and creamy, with a smooth and sweet sour cream topping. This is the cheesecake recipe that my mom has always made, it really is the best! I made this cheesecake in jars for my wedding and they were a great hit. We popped the leftover cheesecakes-in-a-jar straight into the freezer and they still tasted delicious. This year I made these mini cheesecakes for two Thanksgiving celebrations. Single serving cheesecakes are perfect for holiday dinners. I’ve included both mini and regular cheesecake baking instructions below. Look at that delicious layer of sour cream topping on top … Continue reading Best Ever Cheesecake

Malted Hot Chocolate Mix

Hot chocolate is one of my favorite drinks in the wintertime! It’s so easy to make a batch of homemade hot chocolate mix. Just add this mix to hot water, milk, or coffee! You can easily turn your homemade mix into a pretty party favor or stocking stuffer… This mix goes perfectly with the Hot Chocolate Spoons that were on the blog a few days ago! Malted milk powder can be a little tricky to find, this recipe is good with or without! Malted Hot Chocolate Mix Recipe 3 cups powdered sugar 2 1/2 cups powdered milk 1/2 cup malted … Continue reading Malted Hot Chocolate Mix

Gorilla Bread

Gorilla Bread is pretty similar to monkey bread, but each pull-apart piece is filled with a special ingredient… cream cheese! This delicious pastry has a caramelized cinnamon/sugar outside with a soft cream cheese center. It’s a simple recipe that takes only about 10 minutes to put together, making it a great Christmas morning breakfast (or after-dinner treat)! Note: I made half of this recipe and placed it into a large loaf pan. Use two loaf pans or a bundt pan if making the whole recipe. This is an adaption of Paula Deen’s recipe. Gorilla Bread             … Continue reading Gorilla Bread

Hot Chocolate Spoons

Hot Chocolate Spoons are perfect for stirring up a mug of hot chocolate or coffee! Try making them with any variety of chocolate and candy. My favorite is definitely the salted caramel! Create these spoons for a hot chocolate bar, give them as favors at your next Christmas party, use them as stocking stuffers, or enjoy them yourself! Try serving them with my homemade Malted Hot Chocolate Mix! I used these wooden spoons for this DIY, and created these flavor combinations: Salted Caramel // melted caramel squares topped with coarse sea salt Dark Chocolate Toffee // melted semi-sweet chocolate chips topped with toffee bits … Continue reading Hot Chocolate Spoons

Peppermint White Chocolate Pretzels

I love peppermint everything at this time of the year! My husband and I had a Chick-fil-a date on Monday to celebrate the return of their Peppermint Chocolate Chip Milkshake… Starbucks’ Peppermint White Chocolate Mochas are the best… and these Peppermint White Chocolate Pretzels are one of my favorite holiday treats! I love their simple salty-sweetness, with a hint of mint. They’re also the simplest Christmas treat to make. Peppermint White Chocolate Pretzels pretzels white chocolate chips peppermints Unwrap peppermint candies and place them into a ziplock bag. Use a rolling pin or the flat side of a meat tenderizer to crush … Continue reading Peppermint White Chocolate Pretzels

Cherry Turnover Pastries

These Cherry Turnovers have a flaky pastry outside with a warm cherry pie filling (and a sweet glaze!). They are a festive treat for the holidays… these turnovers are just as quick as opening a tube of cinnamon rolls, making them perfect for breakfast or dessert! This is one of those recipes that is so simple that you almost don’t need a recipe. I got my inspiration for these from the Pillsbury’s cherry turnover kits that I loved when I was growing up. I haven’t been able to find them anymore so I decided to make my own simple version. Try … Continue reading Cherry Turnover Pastries

Spicy Southwest Cornbread Dressing

As un-American as this sounds, I’m really not a fan of traditional Thanksgiving dressing or stuffing. I’ve always liked the idea but I just can’t get into the taste. Last year, at my husband’s family’s Thanksgiving dinner, we enjoyed dressing that was flavored with cilantro. It’s something that I never would have thought of, but the flavors really go so well together. As much as I love Southwestern food, I had to try making it myself, so I came up with this similar, spicy, version! Note that this makes a pretty large batch, perfect for serving up at the holidays! … Continue reading Spicy Southwest Cornbread Dressing

Cranberry Toffee Muffins with Crumble Topping

Baking is one of my favorite things to do during the holiday season. I love the delicious scents that fill the house and the warmth of the oven on cold days. This muffin recipe is perfect for the holidays, with the flavor of tart cranberries and salty sweet toffee! You could also make these Cranberry Toffee Muffins in the form of a sweet bread. I actually used this recipe to make one dozen muffins and one mini loaf! Cranberry Toffee Muffins                                      18 … Continue reading Cranberry Toffee Muffins with Crumble Topping

Parmesan Crusted Baked Potatoes

I’ve just found my new favorite potato recipe! I’m honestly not much of a potato fan, but I do try to make them frequently for my husband. I came across this recipe (here) and had to give it a try. We both loved it! When they come out of the oven, these potatoes are soft and buttery, topped with a deliciously crispy parmesan crust. Serve these Parmesan Crusted Potatoes as a side dish or an appetizer! Parmesan Crusted Baked Potatoes 6 small potatoes 1/4 cup butter grated parmesan cheese garlic salt freshly ground pepper Preheat oven to 400F. Scrub potatoes … Continue reading Parmesan Crusted Baked Potatoes

Homemade Alfredo Sauce

It’s National Pasta Day and, while this was not planned in coordination with the holiday, I do have the perfect pasta sauce for you! This was actually my first attempt at making Alfredo sauce. While it did take more time than popping open a jar of sauce, it was easy and worth the extra time. This sauce tastes even better than restaurant Alfredo sauce! When searching for the perfect Alfredo sauce recipe to try, I found that many recipes are fairly similar. I gathered up a variety of ingredients and decided to create my own version. Try this rich and creamy … Continue reading Homemade Alfredo Sauce

Gourmet Caramel Apples

Gourmet caramel apples are one of my favorite holiday treats. Just the fact that there’s a piece of fruit inside makes me feel okay about eating layers and layers of candy! I chose three different apples for this recipe and went with three different flavor combinations on top of the caramel: mini dark chocolate chips, drizzled dark chocolate and white chocolate, and (my favorite) melted dark chocolate dipped in toffee bits… I loved the sweetness of the caramel and chocolate, mixed with the saltiness of the toffee and the tartness of the green apple! It’s so easy to make fancy … Continue reading Gourmet Caramel Apples

Pumpkin Spice French Toast

It’s that time of the year, pumpkin spice everywhere! I love french toast and I really wanted to try a pumpkin version for Fall. This was my first attempt and I love how it turned out. So simple and perfect for cool mornings! This french toast is a perfect way to get your pumpkin spice fix without baking all afternoon or making a trip to Starbucks. If you’re a fan of french toast (and all things pumpkin) then this is the recipe for you! Pumpkin Spice French Toast 4 slices of bread 1 egg 1/8 cup milk 1/8 cup canned pumpkin … Continue reading Pumpkin Spice French Toast

Cream Cheese Pumpkin Bread

Fall is coming! I am absolutely in love with this season! I’ve already been overwhelming my husband with Autumn candle scents, and talk of pumpkins and Fall decor. I can hardly wait for cooler and cozy weather after the nearly unbearable Texas summer heat. In fact, the first couple of days of September were some of our hottest yet this year. In spite of the 105º+ temperatures, I turned on the oven and heated up the house in order to make this Cream Cheese Pumpkin Bread. It was a sacrifice I was willing to make. Enjoy this quick sweet bread … Continue reading Cream Cheese Pumpkin Bread

Garlic Asparagus

Lately I’ve really been attempting to make healthier, less processed, food for us. I’m not going to lie, my favorite meals are the unhealthy ones… dishes that are loaded with pasta and cheese… cheeseburgers have really been my thing recently… and, of course, pizza is always acceptable. I’m not completely cutting out these foods, but I’m trying to get as many vegetables into our diet as possible. Garlic salt makes amazing garlic bread (another unhealthy favorite), so I decided to try it on baked asparagus. We loved it! This way of cooking vegetables is definitely a keeper (try this flavoring method … Continue reading Garlic Asparagus

Mexican Street Corn

This recipe is so quick and easy… do I always say that?? Well, this recipe really is almost effortless (adapted from here). I’ve really been wanting to try Mexican Street Style Corn and I finally found some really good-looking corn last week. This recipe was such a hit! It has so many layers of flavor with the sweetness of the corn, the salty spiciness of the mayo, and the tartness of the lime. I love this spicy mayo, it’s such an excellent compliment to sweet and juicy corn (it would be great over grilled corn)! Mexican Street Corn 4 ears sweet corn olive oil … Continue reading Mexican Street Corn

Broccoli Cheese Jalapeño Soup

I first tasted this spicy broccoli cheese soup at Hoffbrau, a local Texas steak house. I’m not really a steak fan, but I love going there for their Broccoli Cheese Jalapeño Soup. It is so deliciously cheesy with the perfect amount of spiciness! I was searching for a copycat recipe and was pretty excited when I found that the actual recipe for this soup is on the Hoffrbrau website! I didn’t change the recipe but I did attempt to simplify it and I converted measurements to cups. If you want to take a look at the original recipe, you can find … Continue reading Broccoli Cheese Jalapeño Soup

Blueberry Mango Smoothie

Today I’m in the kitchen, whipping up some Pesto from my basil plant (which is growing out of control!) and working on some recipes that will be on the blog soon. But I’m taking a break to share another easy recipe for smoothies with you! This Blueberry Mango Smoothie totally reminds me of a blueberry muffin! Blueberries, along with the sweetness of mango and the richness of almond milk, make up this satisfying and healthy treat. Blueberry Mango Smoothie                                 1 serving 1/2 mango 1/2 cup blueberries 1 … Continue reading Blueberry Mango Smoothie

Tex-Mex Roasted Stuffed Peppers

I can’t get enough of roasted peppers! I love how roasted peppers are crispy charred, and yet soft and juicy. I used to be under the assumption that I couldn’t get a good charred pepper without a gas stove or grill, but I’ve discovered that an oven broiler is a great way to cook peppers! Roasted bell peppers are a tasty and healthier alternative to tortillas for Mexican dishes (or try a sandwich bread or bun swap with my Roast Beef Stuffed Peppers!). These Tex-Mex Roasted Stuffed Peppers are a great way for turning leftovers into a fresh new dish! Use … Continue reading Tex-Mex Roasted Stuffed Peppers