Thursday, November 17, 2011

This Week's Favorites

I was looking for some new dinner recipes and came across these three delicious dishes.
Can't wait to try them!

Biggest Loser Lettuce Wraps

Pinned Image
Source: via Erin on Pinterest 

Vegetarian Tamale Pie

Vegetarian Tamale Pie
Source: a couple cooks via Erin on Pinterest

Pesto and Mozzarella Stuffed Chicken

Pesto and mozzarella stuffed chicken breasts.

I am always intrigued by a new breakfast cookie!

25 Calorie Banana Bread Cookies

Banana bread cookies - 25 cals each
Source: Werk It! via Erin on Pinterest

Breakfast Cookies: no flour...

Breakfast cookies:  No butter, no sugar, no eggs, no flour.
Source: Blueberry Girl via Erin on Pinterest

Holiday cocktails? Yes, please!

holiday cocktail - cranberry, apple, vodka, and ginger ale.
Source: What Katie Ate via Erin on Pinterest

And this just looks like it will melt in your mouth:
Lemon Pull-Apart Bread.

lemon pull-apart bread
Source: The Whimsical Cupcake via Erin on Pinterest

I am linking up with Friday Favorites at Finding Joy in My Kitchen. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Lunch: Easy Tostadas and more...

Lunch is not our favorite meal around here. It is kinda boring and usually has to be pretty quick with two little people running around all the time. 
Lately these are some of the more fun and easy lunches we have been enjoying. 

This is a great lunch for Abby to take to "lunch bunch" at preschool or a great lunch for us to take to the park. 
It is our healthier version of  a lunchable:
Wheat thins, cheddar cheese, turkey pepperoni, and grapes.

On the days we are home, making easy tostadas is one of Abby's favorite lunches. 
What you will need: 
fat free refried beans 
tostada shells 
low fat cheddar cheese
avocado, sour cream, salsa (optional toppings) 
What you will do: 
Heat the refried beans. 
Spread about 1/4 cup beans on a tostada shell. 
Sprinkle the cheese on top and either heat in the oven for a few minutes or pop in the microwave for a few seconds. 

Add all the toppings you like. 

I found this soup at Trader's Joes and it is low fat and delicious! 
I made a little side of nachos and have been eating this a little too much!

And this salad is my newest lunch obsession:
Mixed lettuces, carrots, grapes, chicken salad (cut up chicken with a little light mayo), and some sliced almonds.

Anyone else have any lunch ideas that are healthy, easy, and kid friendly?

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Caramel Stuffed Apple Cider Cookies

For dessert on Friday night we made cookies. 
Abby kept saying, "These are the funnest cookies we have ever made!"
They were not only fun to make but delicious too. 
The recipe made a ton so we had a lot to share with our family! 

Caramel Stuffed Apple Cider Cookies
recipe from Scrambled Henfruit


1 cup softened butter
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 box (10 packets) Alpine Spiced Apple Cider Instant Original Drink mix 
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 cups all purpose flour
1 bag caramels (I bought mine at Sprouts and used a box full)


Preheat oven to 350 and line cookie sheets with parchment paper. 

In a bowl whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. 

In a mixer cream together butter, sugar, salt and all 10 packets of cider. 

Beat in eggs, one at a time and add vanilla. Mix well. 

Gradually add flour mixture to sugar mixture and mix until combined. 

Refrigerate for about an hour. While in the fridge, unwrap your caramels (or make your kids to this! ;)). 

Using a small cookie scoop, or tablespoon, scoop out dough and slightly flatten in the palm of your hand. Press the caramel in the center and cover completely. Place on parchment  paper about 2 inches apart. 

Bake for 12-14 minutes (it took 13 in my oven). Once done, slide the parchment paper on to the counter to cool. Once slightly cooled and edges are slightly hardened, twist cookies off parchment, turn upside down and allow to cool on cooling racks. 

Makes about 4 dozen. 

Both Saturday and today we ate more of these cookies! We popped them in the microwave for about 10 seconds and the caramel melted once again, perfectly! 

I am sharing this recipe with: 
Sundae Scoop
Think Pink Sundays
Melt In Your Mouth Mondays
More the Merrier Monday
Simply Delish

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Gluten Free Pizza Puffs

I thought one of the saddest things about eating gluten free would be that I would not be able to make homemade pizzas anymore. We love to make the dough from scratch! 
But, I was really happy to find this gluten free pizza crust that is really easy and yeast is used so when making it, it feels like the good ol' days! 
This bag of Bob's Red Mill makes two crusts so I usually end up making one pizza and the other dough I use to make pizza puffs for lunches that week. 

I followed the directions on the bag to make the pizza. 
The yeast is included in the bag. You only need oil and eggs to complete the recipe. 
I like to add some italian/pizza seasonings and garlic salt or else it is kind of bland. 

For the puffs...

Follow directions for making the pizza dough (if you aren't using Bob's Red Mill Crust, use any homemade dough). 
Add in: 
 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 cup low fat mozzarella cheese 
1 cup turkey pepperoni (quartered).
Mix thoroughly and drop by spoonfuls into a greased muffin pan. 
Bake according to pizza dough directions or until tops and slightly brown.
Use marinara sauce for dipping! 
One crust should make about 12 regular size puffs. 

I am sharing this recipe with...

Monday, November 7, 2011

Friday Night Dessert Night: 100 Calorie Flourless Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes

Friday night we decided to make something pumpkin again. 
A few weeks ago we made Impossible Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes and they were delicious. 
But, we are leaning toward mostly gluten-free around here (not because of an intolerance, but only a sensitivity!). So occasionally it is really exciting to find a really yummy dessert that I can make AND eat! 
The bonus to this is only about 100 calories a serving!

100 Calorie Flourless Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes
adapted from Very Best Baking


16 foil cupcake liners (I used silicone cups and it worked great!)
non-stick cooking spray 
3/4 cup white sugar 
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger 
1/2 tsp salt
2 large egg whites
1 15 oz. can pure pumpkin
1 12 oz. can fat free evaporated milk
fat free whipped cream
12 small gingersnap cookies, grumbled 


Preheat oven to 350. 
Spray cupcake liners with non-stick spray and lay out on a cookie sheet. 

Combine sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, ginger, and salt in a small bowl. Beat egg whites in a large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk. Spoon 1/4 cup of the mixture into each prepared cup. 

Bake for 25-28 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on baking sheet for 20 minutes. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. 

They really taste like pumpkin pie!

Also on Friday, we got started on Abby's decorations for her birthday party at the end of the month. 
Can you guess what her theme is going to be? ;) 

I am sharing this recipe with...

This Week's Menu (a tad late)

Abby sat down with me and made this week's menu. 
She made some great decisions and she is very excited to help me cook this week. 
She picked Friday's dessert from my list of recipes on Pinterest. 
Hopefully it turns out as good as it looks! 

Here is what's for dinner...


Dinner out 




Breakfast for dinner: 
Bacon, egg, and cheese biscuits 


Leftover biscuits


Orange Chicken 
Coconut Rice (from the freezer)
Green Beans 



(I am going to try and lighten this up and make it Gluten Free!)

I am also going to make some Gluten Free Pumpkin Bread this week! 

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Low Fat Baked Potato Soup

This recipe was so easy, so delicious, and so low fat. 
It has a loaded baked potato flavor but is actually mostly loaded with cauliflower 
and no one in my house would have even guessed it! 

Baked Potato Soup 
recipe adapted from Gina's Skinny Recipes


2 russet potatoes
1 head of cauliflower 
1 1/2 cups chicken broth*
1 1/2 cups 1% milk
1/2 cup light sour cream 
low fat cheddar cheese, turkey bacon bits, chives

*The original recipe calls for fat free chicken broth. I was looking for gluten free and couldn't find both gluten free and fat free so mine had some fat in it. I don't think it made a difference. 


Soften potatoes by piercing them with a fork and putting them in the microwave for about 5 minutes. 
When soft, remove them, allow to cool a bit, and peel. 

Meanwhile, in a large pot, steam cauliflower in water until tender. Drain. 

Place potatoes, cauliflower, chicken broth and milk in a blender and puree. 

Place pureed mixture back into the large pot and add the salt, pepper and sour cream. Stir until well combined. 

Heat over medium heat for about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

Pour 1 cup servings into bowls and top with desired toppings. 


I am sharing this recipe with:

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Microwave Potato Chips

For a side dish with dinner last week we made microwave potato chips. 
When my husband ate one he said, "I LOVE these!" 
To say he loves them is quite something as the usual comments are as follows:
"We can have this next week." or 
"I am going to have some more."
I know he likes something if he asks for it again or wants seconds, but LOVE! 
These were really tasty and low fat!

Microwave Potato Chips 
adapted from

What you will need: 

Potatoes (I used Russet) 
Non-stick spray 
Steamer (I used my trusty tupperware steamer)

What you will do: 

Peel (or not, your choice) and slice potatoes as thin as you can. 

Spray your steamer with non-stick spray and place potatoes in the steamer, laying them flat, not overlapping. 

Microwave on high for 3 minutes, then microwave on half power for 3 minutes. 

Remove from microwave and flip them over. 

Put back in the microwave for another 3 minutes at half power. 

Sprinkle with salt and serve. 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Friday Night Dessert Night: Candy Popcorn Balls

My original plan was a dessert with apples but the day got the best of me and I didn't have time to make anything. 
We were too busy having fun at the Pumpkin Patch with our cousins. 

How is it possible that not even one kid is looking at the camera? 

Anyway, instead of something with apples, we went with something I saw on Debbie Does Dinner Healthy's Friday Favorites list of yummy links. 
I had some leftover candy from making Monster Mix and I wanted it gone, so this was the perfect thing! 

Candy Popcorn Balls
recipe adapted from A Duck in her Pond


1 bag popcorn, popped
1 1/2 cups candy corn 
1 cup mini M&Ms 
1 10 oz. bag mini marshmallows
1/4 cup butter
non-stick spray 


Pop popcorn and set aside. 
Spray a large pot with non-stick spray and melt butter in the pot.
Add marshmallows and stir until butter and mallows combine. 
Add in popcorn and stir to coat. 
Add in candy corn and stir completely. 
Sprinkle with M&M's and only stir a few times (they start to melt, which is fine, but it looks prettier if you can still see some of the candy shell!).
Spread out on parchment paper and separate into 10 or so pieces and roll into balls. 
Eat up! 

I am sharing this recipe with...

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Friday Night Dessert Night x2

For the last two weeks we have definitely made dessert on Fridays but I have yet to post about it! 
Two weeks ago Abby had a slumber party with her best friend/cousin, Radley and we had a tea party with mini pumpkin pie cupcakes. They were delicious! 

They thought they were pretty funny drinking their "coffee," aka chocolate milk. 

We also made a cute little pumpkin craft from some things they collected on a nature walk, plus some things we had around the house. 

This last Friday night, we made Chocolate Caramel Apple Pops
They were delicious and pretty easy to make. 
I got it all ready (too hot for Abby to help) 
and away she went dipping the apples! 

We made a huge mess, some were pretty, some were not, but all were delicious!