Friday, December 30, 2016

A's favorites of 2016

Hi, I'm A! I'm 9 years old. I used to be picky but when I tried a lot of different types of food I started to like new food. These are my top favorite recipes from my mom's blog. I started with 27 favorite recipes but had to only pick 10. Here are my top 10:

10.  Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

My favorites of 2016

 My husband says I'm my own worst critic when it comes to food. Isn't that the case with most things? Most of the time I like what I make but sometimes there are meals that I love.  Honestly it was a good year for food and it took a bit of narrowing down to get it to ten but I think this pretty much covers my absolute favorites from this year!






Monday, December 26, 2016

Top 10 Most Popular Recipes of 2016

It's hard to believe another year is coming to an end.  In the many years I've been blogging recipes, I think this might have been my most successful.  I made a lot of recipes that I really wanted to make at the beginning of the year. I was pretty consistent at keeping up with it, I usually start falling off the wagon towards the end of the year so I'm happy about that. I love cooking and I do this because I love the thought of another family sitting down around the table with a good meal and talking about their days. That brings a beautiful image doesn't it? But I'm sure many tables look like mine come dinner time, a frazzled mom, a baby throwing food on the floor, a tired husband and a dog begging under the table. But in the REAL moments there is beauty too, there is connection and there is refreshment.  So that's why I do what I do over here in this little space of the internet.  I hope you and your family has had a wonderful holiday season and thanks for joining me over here! 
Now on to the recipes, I always find it fascinating with what recipes get the most views each year. This year confirmed something I bet most of us already knew, we love pumpkin anything and we are obsessed with our crock pots! Amen and amen.  Here are the top most viewed recipes of 2016. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Copy Cat Cinnamon Biscuits

I love Bojangles, like deep love.  And I LOVED their cinnamon biscuits. Then we moved away from the land of Bojangles and then Bojangles did away with cinnamon biscuits. It's just all sad. So when I came across this recipe I knew I had to try it out to get my cinnamon biscuit fix.  These would be the perfect Christmas morning breakfast.  This recipe is adapted from Life Love and Sugar.

Cinnamon Filling
1/2 brown sugar
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
3 tbsp flour
2 tbsp butter (melted)

2 cups self rising flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp powdered sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 cup salted butter (very cold, cubed)
3/4 cup plus 2 tbp buttermilk

3/4 powdered sugar
2 tbsp milk

Heat oven to 450.  In a medium mixing bowl combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, flour and butter then set to the side.  In another medium mixing bowl combine the flour, baking powder, powdered sugar and cinnamon.  Then using a pastry cutter or two forks cut the butter into the flour mixture. Once it's blended to resemble rough sand then stir in the buttermilk. Knead the dough on a floured surface several times then spread out to desired thickness. Cut your biscuits out then knead the remaining dough back together and cut remaining biscuits. Place the biscuits on a sheet pan. Make a well in the middle of the biscuit dough and fill with about 1-1 1/2 tbsp of cinnamon filling. Bake for 12 minutes or until the biscuits are cooked through.  While the biscuits are cooking whisk together the glaze. Let biscuits sit for 5 minutes then drizzle with the glaze.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Cheesy Chicken Lasagna

I put this on them menu because I thought it sounded different and interesting. Then I made it and everyone freaked out over it. It really was so good and different but not so different that my little ones wouldn't eat it. My son took the leftover to school the next two days because he loved it so much. This recipe is adapted from Food Lovin Family.

4 cups finely shredded cooked chicken
2 (8oz) containers chive and onion cream cheese
1 package frozen spinach (thawed and drained
1 tsp garlic salt
1 jar pasta sauce (best to use a red sauce with cheese like parmesan red sauce)
4 cups mozzarella cheese
12 lasagna noodles (cooked according to packaging)

Heat oven to 350. Grease a 9x13 baking dish with baking spray. In a bowl combine the chicken, cream cheese, spinach and garlic salt. Place 1/3 of the sauce in the bottom of the baking dish, top with 4 noodles, 1/3 of the chicken  mixture and 1/3 of the mozzarella cheese. Repeat two more times ending with the mozzarella layer.  Cover and bake for 40 minutes then uncover and bake for 15 more minutes. Remove and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Puppy Chow

Puppy chow, muddy buddies, whatever you call them this is a classic! Everyone seems to make their recipe slightly differently but this is how I make it!

1 (12 oz) box Crispix
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup smooth peanut butter
5 tbsp butter
1 lb powdered sugar

In a sauce pan melt together the chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter.  Stir together over low heat until it is completely melted. Pour the cereal into the chocolate mixture and stir until it is covered. Place half of the powdered sugar into a 2 gallon ziplock bag. Add the coated cereal then pour in the remaining powdered sugar and carefully shake to coat.  Place in an airtight container to store.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

My oldest loves tomato soup. I usually make the same recipe but when I saw this roasted tomato bail soup I had to try it.  It was delicious and I loved the flavor the roasted tomatoes brought to the soup. This recipe is adapted from Cooking Classy.

2 1/4 lbs Roma Tomatoes
1 1/4 lb Cherry Tomatoes
4 1/2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
8 cloves garlic (peeled and left whole)
2 small yellow onions (sliced in 1/2 inch pieces)
1 cup lightly packed fresh basil
5 cup vegetable or chicken broth

Heat oven to 425. Slice the roma tomatoes length wise. Toss the roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, garlic and onions then toss in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Place on a rimmed sheet pan and roast for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes then carefully remove papery layers from the onions and pull the peels away from the tomatoes. Place in the bottom of the pot then pour the broth over the vegetables and stir in the basil then bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and let cook for 20 minutes. Blend the soup with an immersion blender or in small amounts in a regular blender. Serve warm. 

Monday, December 12, 2016

Gingerbread Loaf with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

I love all things gingerbread! Well except the gingerbread latte, that does not sound good to me at all. But gingerbread cookies, gingerbread muffins, gingerbread loaf, all of it. I feel like it's highly underrated and that makes me sad, it deserves a lot more love.  I adapted this recipe from Le Creme De La Crumb.

1 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
2 1/4 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter (softened)
1 cup sugar
1 cup unsweetened applesauce

3 tbsp butter
3 oz cream cheese
3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp cinnamon
4-5 tbsp milk

Heat oven to 350. Grease a 9x5 loaf pan.  In a bowl whisk together the flour, cinnamon, ground cloves, ground ginger and salt.  In a separate bowl cream together the butter, sugar and applesauce. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet until combined. Pour into the loaf pan and bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes then flip out of the pan and let cool on a wire rack. When the loaf has cooled completely, make your frosting. In a medium size mixing bowl cream together the butter and cream cheese then add in the sugar, cinnamon, vanilla extract and milk until it reaches the desirable consistency.  Spread over the loaf and serve.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Crock Pot BBQ Ranch Chicken Sandwiches

This was a recipe born out of plans changing and trying to make dinner out of what I had on hand! These sandwiches turned out great, the ranch seasoning gave them a nice tangy taste and the chicken just fell apart.

2-3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 jar bbq sauce
1 ranch seasoning packet

Place the chicken in the bottom of the crock pot.  Whisk together the bbq sauce and ranch seasoning. Pour the bbq sauce mixture over the chicken and cook on low for 7-9 hours. Shred the chicken and serve on lightly toasted buns. 

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Butterscotch Peanut Butter Clusters

These make the perfect little holiday treats for a party or gift basket and they are super easy to make! My 9 year old helped me stir and enjoyed putting these all together. This recipe is from Crazy for Crust.

11oz butterscotch chips
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
3 cups cornflakes

Cover two baking sheets with wax paper and set to the side. Place the butter scotch chips and peanut butter in a microwave safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds then stir. Continue to heat for 30 seconds while stirring in between until the mixture is smooth.  Carefully stir in the cornflakes until they are coated with the butterscotch mixture. Drop spoonfuls of the mixture onto the lined baking sheets then place in the refrigerator for 45 minutes or until they are set.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Creamy Herbed Roast Beef Pinwheels

These are the perfect little bite size appetizers for your christmas party! I made them when I hosted a Noonday Collection Trunk Show and they were so easy to put together and also to eat!

4 large tortillas
1 lb thinly sliced rare roast beef
1 container garlic and herb boursin cheese

Spread 1/2 of the boursin over the tortilla then top with 1/4 of the roast beef.  Roll up tightly then roll in foil and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or until right before your party.  Unroll from the foil and slice in 3/4 inch pieces.

Friday, December 2, 2016


These little sugary treats just scream Christmastime to me! I love all things ginger and snickerdoodle so the combination was just perfection. They weren't over the top gingery so the kids loved them too! This recipe is slightly adapted from Julie's Eats & Treats.

3/4 cup butter (softened)
1 1/2 cup sugar (divided)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup maple syrup
3 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon (divided)
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Heat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl cream together the butter, 1/2 cup sugar and brown sugar until it is light and fluffy.  Mix in the egg and syrup. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, ginger, salt and cream of tartar. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined. In a small bowl combine 1 cup of sugar and 1/2 tsp cinnamon.  Roll the dough into balls and coat in the cinnamon sugar mixture then place on the baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the edges are just starting to brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 2 minutes then place on a wire rack.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

BBQ Mozzarella Meatballs

These little meatballs were so delicious! My kids are all about meatballs no matter the recipe. These little guys were a crowd pleaser which makes me a happy mama.

1 lb ground beef
1/3 cup breadcrumbs
1/2 tsp seasoning salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1 egg
1 cup bbq sauce

Heat oven to 400. Grease a baking dish.  Combine the ground beef with the breadcrumbs. Add in the seasoning salt, pepper, chili powder, garlic powder, shredded mozzarella and egg. Stir together until combined then form the meatballs. Place in the baking dish and bake for 20-24 minutes. Remove from oven and brush with bbq sauce then place back in the oven for 4 more minutes. Remove and brush with bbq sauce again then serve.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Warm Loaded Baked Potato Dip

Who doesn't love a baked potato?  This dip was such a yummy hearty dip and was enjoyed by all! This recipe is from Nutmeg Nanny.

8 oz sour cream
8 oz cream cheese (softened)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (divided)
6 strip bacon (cooked and crumbled)
3 green onions (chopped)

Heat oven to 350.  In a bowl combine the sour cream and cream cheese. Stir in 1 cup of cheese, the bacon and most of the green onion.  Pour into a 8x8 baking dish then top with the remaining cheese. Bake for 30 minutes. Top with the rest of the green onion. Serve with wavy chips.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Crock Pot Cream Cheese Chicken Chili

I love a crock pot dinner, especially on a cold night.  This chili was a big hit with my family, my little guy took the leftovers for lunch for two days, a sure sign that he likes it!  It was super easy and had great flavor!  This recipe was adapted from The Magical Slow Cooker.

2 lbs skinless boneless chicken breasts
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tbsp chili powder
2 (15oz) cans pinto beans
1 (15oz) can diced tomatoes
1 tsp minced garlic
1 onion (diced)
3 tsp diced pickled jalapeno peppers
32oz chicken broth
8oz cream cheese
fritos, sour cream and cheese for serving

Place the chicken in the bottom of the crock pot. Sprinkle the salt, pepper and chili powder over the chicken. Add the pinto beans, diced tomatoes, garlic, onion, jalapenos and chicken broth. Cook on low for 7-9 hours. Shred the chicken and place back into the chili.  Cut the cream cheese into small cubes and stir into the chili. Let cook for 15 minutes then stir then cook for 15 more minutes. Serve with toppings.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Macaroni and Cheese with Garlicky Breadcrumbs

Neither of my children like mac and cheese. I feel like I am failing as a parents.  I was craving it so I decided to make it anyways and just made them spaghetti because sometimes mama just needs some mac and cheese! I adapted this recipe from Annie's Eats.

1 lbs pasta (I used mini rigatoni)
8 tbsp unsalted butter
5 tbsp flour
1 cups whole milk
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
3 cups shredded gruyere cheese
2 cups shredded colby jack
2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
cayenne pepper to taste

1 1/2 cups breadcrumbs
5 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp garlic salt
pinch of pepper

Heat oven to 425.  Boil pasta according to directions and drain.  In a pot melt the butter then whisk in the flour. Let cook for 5 minutes while whisking.  Slowly add the milk, whisking and letting thicken as you add. Turn off the heat once the mixture begins to bubble. Add the cheeses 1 cup at a time while stirring continually.  Mix the pasta and the cheese sauce together then pour into a greased 9x13 baking dish.  In a bowl melt the 5 tbsp unsalted butter then stir in the breadcrumbs, garlic salt and pepper.  Sprinkle over the top of the mac and cheese then back for 10-14 minutes or until the breadcrumbs begin to brown.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Apple Cider Doughnuts

Looking for a good breakfast recipe for Thanksgiving? This is it!  These sweet doughnuts are the perfect morning pick me up!  This recipe is from Foodie Misadventures.

2 cups flour
3/4 cup white sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp apple pie spice
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup apple cider
1/4 cup milk
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp melted butter

1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp cinammon
4 tbsp melted butter

Heat oven to 325 and grease doughnut pan.  In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, apple pie spice and salt.  Mix in the apple cider, milk, eggs, vanilla and melted butter. Whisk until combined.  Fill the doughnuts pan 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Remove and let cool for 2 minutes before flipping out of the pan.  In a bowl whisk together the white sugar, brown sugar and cinnamon.  Keep the butter in a separate bowl.  Brush the doughnuts with the butter then dip in the cinnamon sugar mixture. 


Friday, November 18, 2016

Roasted Lemon Dill Red Potatoes

Roasted potatoes are always a hit in my house plus they are super easy to make. I made these potatoes along side of Falafel Burgers and they were a great side dish!This recipe is adapted from Rachel Cooks.

1 1/2 lbs baby red potatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 tsp dried dill
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

Heat oven to 425. Toss the potatoes with olive oil, salt, pepper and dill. Place the potatoes on baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes then stir and bake for 15 more or until the potatoes are tender. Remove from oven and toss in lemon juice.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Sheet Pan Pizza

A few weeks ago we had a few extra kids in the house while some friends were visiting colleges with their oldest children.  I needed to figure out something for lunch that would feed a crowd and what makes a bunch of kids happier than pizza? So I decided to try out this new recipe from Your Homebased Mom and I got a thumbs up from everyone!

1 3/4 cups warm water
1/2 cup olive oil plus 1 tbsp
1 tbsp sugar
5 cups flour
4 1/2 tsp instant yeast
2 tsp salt
1 jar pizza sauce
3 cups cheese
plus toppings of your choice

In a bowl combine the warm water,1/4 cup olive oil and sugar.  In a stand mixer using a dough hook, combine the flour, yeast and salt. On medium speed add in the water mixture and mix for several minutes or until the dough is combined and smooth. Place in a greased bowl and let rise for 60-90 minutes. Use 1/4 cup of olive oil to coat the sheet pan. On a floured service roll out the dough and place onto the sheet pan then cover and let rise for 20 minutes. Place the oven rack to the lowest position and heat oven to 450. Uncover the dough and dent the dough with your finger. Bake in the oven for 7-9 minutes. Remove from oven and top with sauce, cheese and toppings then place back in the oven and bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly and the crust is golden brown. Let cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Crock Pot Garlic Brown Sugar Terikyaki Pork

I was personally excited about this recipe, I wasn't sure what my children would think though but they both devoured it! This will be one that I put into our regular rotation for sure. This recipe was adapted from Yellow Bliss Road.

2-3lb pork pork loin
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp minced garlic
1/2 cup teriyaki sauce

In a bowl whisk together the brown sugar, garlic and teriyaki sauce. Place the pork loin in the bottom of the crock pot then pour the sauce over. Cook on low for 6-7 hours.  Shred and serve over rice or mashed potatoes. 

Friday, November 11, 2016

Maple Glazed Pumpkin Scones

I wonder if we would love pumpkin as much as we do if it were something we ate year round? But since it only feels right to eat it during a certain time period I feel like I need to eat all things pumpkin during the fall months. These scones are now on my must make list for every fall season!

2 cups flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter
1/2 cup pumpkin
3 tbsps whole milk
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
2-3 tbsp whole milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

 Heat oven to 425. Grease a sheet pan.  In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice and salt. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients until it is a crumbly mixture. In a separate bowl combine with pumpkin, milk, egg and vanilla extract. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet. On a floured surface pat the dough into a 1 inch thick rectangle. Cut into 4 squares then cut each square in half. Bake for 15-18 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool. While the scones are cooling whisk together the powdered sugar, maple syrup, milk and vanilla extract. Dip each scone into the glaze and allow the glaze to set before eating. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Bacon and Cheese Hash Brown Breakfast Casserole

I love an easy breakfast casserole for dinner. I think I might enjoy it more than anyone else in my family, they like it but I love it. And sometimes the cook gets to make what she wants, haha!

6 cups shredded hash browns (thawed)
4 eggs
1/3 cup milk
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp salt
pinch of pepper
1 cup colby jack cheese
4 strips bacon (cooked and crumbled)

Heat oven to 350. Grease a 9x11 baking dish. Layer the hash browns in the bottom of the dish. Whisk together the eggs, milk, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Pour the mixture over the hash browns.  Sprinkle the bacon over the top of the hash browns then top with the cheese. Bake in the oven for 45-55 minutes.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Buffalo Chicken Pizza Rolls

This is the last in the trio of pizza rolls that I made several weeks ago. I have to say I think these might have been my favorite of the three.

1/2 Thin Crust Pizza recipe
1 1/2 cups shredded chicken
1/2 cup buffalo sauce
1 cup mozzarella cheese

Heat oven to 425.  On a floured surface roll out the pizza dough into a thin rectangle. Mix together the chicken and buffalo sauce. Spread the chicken out on the pizza dough then top with mozzarella cheese. Roll up the dough and slice into 1 1/2 inch rolls. Place on a greased sheet pan and back for 15-18 minutes. Serve with a side of blue cheese or ranch.