Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Chocolate Chip Toffee Bars

This is a Hershey's recipe! I really didn't know what to expect when I made these, I knew they would be rich but they were REALLY rich! When I read the recipe it said to cut into 48 bars and I laughed out loud because seriously, those would be so tiny but then I tried them. Don't get me wrong, they are great just rich!

2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup
1 1/2 sticks butter
1 egg (slightly beaten)
2 cups (12 oz pack) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1 1/3 cups (8 o. pack) Toffee Bits (divided)

Heat oven to 350. Spray a 13x9 pan with nonstick spray. Mix together flour and brown sugar in a mixing bowl. Cut in the butter until the mixture is crumbly. Add the egg and stir well. Mix in the chocolate chips. Set 1 1/2 cups of the mixture aside. Press the remaining dough into the bottom of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and pour sweetened condensed milk over the cookie. Top with all but 1/3 of the toffee bits. Crumble the remaining cookie dough over the top and bake for 25 to 30 more minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with remaining toffee bits. Let cool completely before cutting.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Cheesy Zucchini and Squash Bake

I saw this recipe on pinterest and just had to try it! It's from Kalyn's Kitchen, it was a great summer side dish! We will be making it again before all the squash and zucchini are gone! I only made half a recipe of this for Gray and I and it was plenty for us!

2 zucchini (sliced and quartered)
2 medium (sliced and quartered)
1 tbsp dried basil
2 tbsp green onion (sliced)
1/2 ts. dried thyme
3/4 tsp garlic powder
1 cup of Mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 350. Coat an 8x8 dish with nonstick spray. In a mixing bowl mix together zucchini, squash, basil, green onion, thyme, garlic powder and 1/2 cup of mozzarella. Make sure everything is mixed together well. Pour into baking dish and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and top with remaining mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Bake for 10 more minutes.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Creamy Chicken Lasagna

This deliciousness was found at Cassie Craves! I have made this several times now, it's one of Gray and I's favorites! It's so creamy without being super overwhelming! I also froze this before A came home and then thawed it and baked it, it was perfect!

1 lb chicken breast (cooked and shredded)
1 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic (minced)
2 cans cream chicken soup
1 8oz package cream cheese
2 cups sour cream
1 cup milk
1 cup chicken broth
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste
1 box no-boil lasagna noodles
4 cups shredded colby jack cheese

Heat oven to 350. Saute the garlic in olive oil over medium low heat, add the cream of chicken soup, cream cheese, sour cream, milk and broth to the pan and stir until everything is melted and combined. Add salt, pepper and Italian seasoning and stir. Add chicken and let the mixture simmer for 3 to 5 minutes. Put a layer of the mixture in the bottom of a 9x13 pan, then do a layer of noodles, then the mixture then cheese, repeat until everything is done making sure to end with the cheese. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until bubbly.

This recipe was linked to the Cream Cheese Ingredient Spotlight on Eat at Home Cooks.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Oatmeal Butterscotch Muffins

Have you ever read How Sweet It Is? It's an awesome food blog that will make you so so hungry. A while ago she posted a recipe for oatmeal chocolate chip muffins, I knew right away that I wanted to make them but with butterscotch! These muffins were gooey and messy and amazingly delicious!

1 cup AP flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup butter (room temperature)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup milk
1 cup butterscotch chips

Heat oven to 350. Line and grease muffin tin. Place the oats in a small bowl and add 1/2 cup milk. Let them stand for at least 5 minutes while preparing remaining ingredients. In a bowl combine brown sugar and egg. Whisk until a smooth caramel color. Whisk in butter and vanilla. Add oat mixture, flour, salt, cinnamon and baking soda. Stir in the remaining milk. Fold in butterscotch chips. Fill each muffin cup with about 1/4 cup of batter. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Un"fried" Black Beans

My friend Leslie brought these over one night and Gray and I both flipped out over them. We love black beans and this recipes is easy with a lot of flavor!!! Also, Gray and I can eat a whole recipe of these by ourselves, when we have guests over we triple or quadruple the recipe. It's very simple to multiple.

1 14oz can black beans
1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 tsp garlic (chopped)
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp fresh pepper
1/4 cup onion diced
1/3 cup shredded pepper jack (optional)

Combine everything in a pot on the stove and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes. Drain the beans and reserve the liquid. Mash the beans and add back as little or much liquid until you get the consistency that you like. Optional: Place in a dish and top with cheese. Place under the broiler until cheese is bubbly.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Tomato Basil Grilled Cheese

I got the idea for this sandwich on pinterest from The Mobile Cook. They did it a little different over there but same idea. This sandwich was amazing and gooey and delicious. I believe I will have it again for lunch today. Seriously divine.

Fresh Basil
Fresh Mozzarella

Heat a pan to medium low heat. Butter two pieces of bread on one side. Slice the tomatoes thinly, you need 3 or 4 slices per sandwich. Slice the mozzarella and again 3 or 4 slices for each sandwich. Chop 1 basil leaf per sandwich. Place the 1 slice of bread, butter side down in the pan. Layer the tomato, basil and then the cheese. Place the other slice of bread, butter side up, on the sandwich. When the bread on the bottom is golden brown, turn it over and grill the other side until done.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

CocaCola Cake

I made this for the first time around 2 years ago. Oh. Em. Geeee. Seriously sooo good! Gray has requested it for both birthdays since then. Unfortunately last year I was on the phone dealing with some major adoption drama while trying to make it and I ended up pouring the batter in the wrong since pan and it started overflowing into my oven. Lovely. This year, I made it right and we greatly enjoyed it! I have seen a few different recipes for this cake but I have always used the on from Love at First Bite.

2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
3 tbsp cocoa
1 cup Coca-Cola
1 cup butter
1 and 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
2 eggs (beaten)
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup butter
1 tbsp cocoa
6 tbsp Coca-Cola
1 pound box powdered sugar

Heat oven to 350. Grease a 9x13 pan. In a mixing bowl combine flour and sugar. In a saucepan melt together the butter, coke, cocoa and marshmallows and bring to a boil. Combine with the flour mixture in the mixing bowl. In a separate bowl combine the eggs butter milk, baking soda, and vanilla. Combine with the flour mixture. Pour into the pan and bake for 35 minutes.

After the cake has been removed from the oven make your icing. In a saucepan combine the butter, cocoa, and coke. Bring to a bowl. Add the powdered sugar and mix in well. Pour the icing over the cake while the icing and the cake are still warm.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Jalapeno Dip

This first time I ever had this dip was at my cousin's house! It was delicious and wonderful and I had to have the recipe! She told me it was from Plain Chicken and I bookmarked it right away. I just now got around to making it myself and it's so easy and so yummmmmmy. It's a great summer treat to serve with tortilla chips but it would also be amazing with tacos or quesadillas!

16 oz light Sour Cream
1 pack 1 oz Ranch Dip Mix
2 jalapenos (chopped)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1/3 cup fresh cilantro
1 whole lime (juiced)

Place the garlic, cilantro and jalapenos in the food processor and process until well chopped. Add sour cream, lime juice, and ranch mix. Process until everything is combined. Place in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours before serving.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Smothered Chicken

I was suppose to make something totally different on this night, but then I reread the recipe. No white wine and I was missing something else that I can't remember now. It was 5:15 and so I just had to wing it. So this was me winging it and Gray and I both loved it!

3-4 chicken breast
1 cup mushrooms
1/2 medium onion (cut into strips)
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
6-8 slices of bacon (cooked)
2 tbsp olive oil
3-4 slices of cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 400. In a skillet heat a 1 tbsp olive oil to medium heat. Season chicken breast with salt and pepper. Place the chicken breast in the skillet and cook for 4 to 6 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Place chicken in a baking dish, cover with foil and place in the oven. Lower the heat on the skillet to medium low. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil and saute the onion for 3 minutes. Add mushroom and worcestershire. Saute until mushroom are soft. Remove chicken from oven, top each chicken breast with two slices of bacon, the mushroom mixture and a slice of cheese. Place back in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 more minutes or until the juices run clear.

This recipe was linked up over at the Eat at Home Ingredient Spotlight for Bacon.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Banana Cream Cheese Muffins

We seem to have a lot of bananas that get overly ripe around here. Mainly because A has love hate relationship with them. Some weeks he eats as many as possible and others he won't touch them. That only means one thing, I MUST bake with them! These muffins are from How To:Simplify.

For the muffin batter:
1 1/2 cups AP flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3 bananas (mashed)
3/4 cup white sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup butter (melted)
1 tbsp vanilla extract

For the filling:
4 ounces cream cheese (softened)
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg

For the topping:
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup AP flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp butter (melted)

Heat oven to 375. In a bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk together. In a separate bowl beat together the mashed bananas, egg, vanilla and melted butter. Combine the flour mixture and the banana mixture until just moist. Spoon half of the batter into muffin cups. In a bowl combine cream cheese, sugar and egg. Spoon into muffin cups over the batter. Top the muffins with the remaining batter. In another bowl mix together the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and butter. Crumble over each muffin. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cheesy Baked Tortellini

Tortellini always reminds me of growing up. My use to fix it for the two of us for lunch or when my dad and brother were gone. It's one of the comfort food things. This recipe came from Real Mom Kitchen and Gray and I both thought it was good. I just love simple recipes and this one is pretty dang simple.

1 (19oz) bag fresh or frozen cheese tortellini
1 (24 oz) jar of marinara sauce
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese (divided)
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Heat oven to 350. Bring a pot of water to boil and cook the tortellini for 3 minutes. Mix together the marinara sauce, cream and 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese. Drain the pasta and add it to the sauce mixture. Season with salt and pepper. Place in a baking dish and top with remaining parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese. Bake for 25 minutes or until the cheese is starting brown and the sauce is bubbly.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Black Bean Hummus

I love hummus! All kinds, really but my very very favorite is black bean. I don't know why I have never made my own hummus sooner because it is amazingly simple and tastes a million times more fresh. I got this recipe from Sweet Pea's Kitchen.

1 15oz black beans (rinsed and drained)
2 tbsp tahini
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp salt
1 garlic clove (peeled)
1/2 small jalapeƱo pepper (seeded)

Put everything into the food processor, process for several seconds. Scrap everything down and process for several more seconds. Transfer to a bowl and serve or refrigerate.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Twice Baked Broccoli and Cheddar Potatoes

When I saw this recipe I was kicking myself for not thinking of it sooner. We eat a lot of broccoli in our house and we always have some leftover! I was originally going to use the recipe from Cate's World Kitchen but then our internet was down so I just had to wing it and make up my own. These were so good and easy, I heated one up for lunch the next day and it was perfect again!

4 potatoes (baked)
1 cup of chopped broccoli (steamed)
4 tbsp butter
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup milk
1/3 cup shredded mozzarella

Heat oven to 350. Scoop out the middle of the potatoes leaving only the shell. Add the broccoli, butter, 2/3 of cheddar, milk, salt and pepper. Stir and mash together. Refill the potatoes and top with remaining cheddar and mozzarella. Bake for 20 minutes.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Oatmeal Cinnamon Chip Cookies

I've had these cinnamon chips hanging around my house for a while now. They were all the rage last fall and I couldn't find them in any grocery store, it was so frustrating! I finally found them a few months ago but just got around to using them. I had to find the perfect recipe just in case I can never find them again. I saw a recipe for oatmeal cinnamon chip cookies on Pinterest from I <3 Naptime, so I just used my own oatmeal cookie recipe and added cinnamon chips. They were amazing. Gray and I devoured them.

3/4 cup soften butter
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup AP flour
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup cinnamon chips

Heat oven to 375. Cream butter, white sugar and brown sugar together. Add eggs and vanilla. Stir in flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt until stirred well. Add oats and cinnamon chips. Drop onto a greased cookie sheet and bake for 8 to 10 minutes.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Easy Cheesy Bacon Biscuits

Yum. Yum Yum Yum. I have been wanting to make these since Picky Palate first posted them. Now these are not something you should eat every day but they were a fun indulgence for sure!

1 can of biscuits
2 tbsp butter
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
4 slices of bacon crumbled or 1/4 cup of bacon bits

Heat oven to 350. Melt the butter in the bottom of the pan. Lay the biscuits down. Top with mozzarella, then bacon, then cheddar. Bake for 15 to 22 minutes. Serve warm.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Cherry Limeades

This was another great pinterest find! This recipe is from Pouty Pink Princess. It's such a fun afternoon treat, A loved it and so did I!

Lemon-Lime Soda (I used Sprite Zero)

Combine 2 tbsp of grenadine for every 8 oz of soda. Squeeze a few limes into the mixture. Garnish with limes and serve cold.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Hot Orzo Chicken Pasta Salad

My friend Megan made this for us when we first got home with A. It was so delicious and light. When I first saw what she brought I wasn't sure Gray would really like it but he did! Of course I had to get the recipe from her and she was more than happy to share it! This is a great summer dish.

2 Chicken Breast (cooked and shredded)
1 box orzo
2 Zucchini (chopped)
1/2 onion (chopped)
3/4 cup of Feta
1/3 cup of Pine nuts (toasted)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup and 1 tbsp olive oil

Cook the pasta. While the pasta is cooking, saute the zucchini and onion in 1 tbsp of olive oil. Drain the pasta and put in a large bowl, mix in all the ingredients. Serve right away or reheat later. Serve warm.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Key Lime Pie Bars

I found this recipe over at Tried and True Yummy Recipes, of course I adapted it a bit! I love Key Lime so so much, especially in the summer time! Some friends came over the other night and this was the perfect dessert on a hot summer night. I might have eaten the leftovers for the next morning for breakfast...

2 cups Graham Cracker Crumbs
1/4 cup Sugar
1/2 cup Butter (Melted)

1 8oz cream cheese, softened
2 14oz cans sweetened condensed milk
2 large egg yolks
1 1/2 cup lime juice

Heat the oven to 350. Spray a 9x13 pan with nonstick spray. In a small bowl combine the graham cracker crumbs with sugar and butter. Mix well and press into the pan. In a large bowl combine the cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk with a hand mixer. Add in one egg yolk at a time then the lime juice. Pour into the crust. Bake for 15-18 minutes. Let cool for 1 hour then place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before serving.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Taco Puffs

This is another new favorite from Cassie Craves! Easy, delish and totally kid-friendly if your kid eats real food, mine doesn't therefore he wouldn't touch them! Gray and I ate all of them though so that was fine. These will be going into the rotation for sure, of course they are slightly adapted to fit our taste! Thanks Cassie for another winner.

1 lb ground beef
1 small onion (chopped)
1 envelope of taco seasoning
1 tube of large refrigerated biscuits.
1 cup of shredded cheese (cheddar or mexican blend)

Heat oven to 400. Brown the ground beef and onion, then add the taco seasoning. On a greased cookie sheet flatten out the biscuits. Add beef and cheese to half of the biscuits then top with the other biscuits. Pinch the edges together to seal. Top with cheese and bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

This recipe was featured over on Eat at Home Cooks Ingredient Spotlight for Ground Beef

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Sweet Black Bean and Corn Salsa

My friend Julie made this for a cookout we went to a few months ago. Everyone there went crazy over it and we devoured it so quickly! I got the recipe from her right away but just now got around to making it. I think this is a keeper for sure!

2 can of black beans (drained and rinsed)
2 can of corn (drained and rinsed)
1 red onion (diced)
1 green pepper (diced)
1 cup canola oil
1/2 cup vinegar
1 1/2 cups sugar

In a sauce pot combine the canola oil, vinegar and sugar. Heat over medium low heat to dissolve the sugar. While that is heating, combine the black beans, corn, onion and green pepper in a bowl. Once the sugar is dissolved pour over the black bean mixture and stir well. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Creamy Chicken Pockets

This is another fabulous recipe thanks to Pinterest, it's slightly adapted from Pennies on the Platter. Even better, I had all the ingredients already in my kitchen!

2 tbsp olive oil
2 small chicken breasts (cooked and shredded)
1/2 cup minced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon butter, softened
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons milk
1 (8 ounce) package refrigerated crescent rolls

Heat oven to 375. Combine cream cheese, butter and milk. Add in the chicken, onion, garlic, salt and pepper. Separate the crescent rolls into triangles or squares. Scoop a tablespoon of filling into each triangle and wrap the dough around the filling, be sure to seal the dough together well. Bake for 11-13 minutes or until golden brown.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Caramel Banana Bread

This amazing recipe came from Taste and Tell. When I found it, I just had to try it right away. I love banana bread and add caramel icing? Yes please! I could have eaten this whole loaf so I sent most of it to work with Gray so that I could escape the calories. Go make this right now, you will not regret it. I did have to use a little more cream in my icing but I adjusted the recipe to what I used, it was just not then enough to be able to spread over the bread.

For the Banana Bread:

1 3/4 cups flour
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed bananas
2 tablespoons milk
2 eggs

Heat oven to 350. In a mixing bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk together. Then add the bananas milk and eggs. Mix until combined. Pour the batter into a greased loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour or until golden brown. Cool completely then remove from pan and top with caramel icing.

For the Caramel Icing:

1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 teaspoons heavy cream
1 cup powdered sugar

Combine butter and brown sugar in a pan over medium heat. Bring to a boil then remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Then whisk in the heavy cream and powdered sugar. Once all the lumps are gone pour over the banana bread.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Guacamole Bacon Burgers

I got the idea for this burger from Real Mom Kitchen but I totally changed it made it our own. This is my ideal burger for sure. Dripping in gooey pepper jack, crunchy bacon and guac, nothing is better in my book!

2 cups Guacamole
1 lb Bacon (fried)
1 1/4 lbs ground beef
2 tsp taco seasoning
1 tbsp bacon grease
1/4 cup red onion (chopped)
1 egg

In a bowl combine the ground beef, taco seasoning, bacon grease, red onion, and egg. Make 4-6 hamburger patties, make a hole with your index finger in the middle (this is so they don't swell). Cook the burgers on the grill over medium heat until they have reached desired doneness. Top with cheese, guacamole, and bacon.