Saturday, December 24, 2011

Lasagna Cupcakes

So after numerous requests for the recipe....  I present to you....Lasagna Cupcakes.

First Grease your cupcake tins and put one won ton wrapper in each tin.

Add some ground beef, a teaspoon is generous.


Add sauce.  I used Ragu.  My mom wanted to make this recipe so she is pictured helping me make them today for the wonderful staff at Uncommon Care.   

Add cheese.  We used Ricotta, Feta, Mozzarella, and Parmesan.

Topping it with the mozzarella....  After you do this you will layer it one more time ending with the Mozzarella on top.

Ready for the oven.  350 degrees for 18-20 minutes!

When they are done put them on a cookie sheet if you plan to freeze them.  They freeze beautifully!  We took them when we stayed in a hotel recently and they warmed up great in the microwave.  Add salad and some bread and you have a meal!  

*Other Options

Taco Cupcakes- These I have personally tried.  Use Taco meat and cheese to layer.  Top with Sour Cream and Salsa.  Some Guacamole would be yummy too!  
Quiche-  Eggs, Meat (ham, sausage, bacon) & Cheese!  Sounds delicious too!
Dessert- Bake the won ton wrapper and then fill with pudding and whipped cream!

What ideas do you have?  Let me know so I can try them too!  I would love new followers and I will follow you!

This post linked at:


Friday, December 23, 2011

No need for fat pants!

After some yummy treats this week we need to have something that is healthy and will not make us grab those fat pants!   So today I am posting  Cookie Dough Dip.   I know what you are thinking.  That can't possibly be healthy.  But it is.  There is a secret ingredient that makes it healthy.   Chickpeas.
Here is the recipe:

Cookie Dough Dip
Recipe courtesy of
  • 1 1/2 cups chickpeas (1 can, drained) (250g)
  • 1/8 tsp plus 1/16 tsp salt
  • tiny bit over 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup nut butter (You can get away with using only 3 T. If you use peanut butter, it’ll have a very-slight “pb cookie dough” taste, so if you don’t want this, you can sub oil.)
  • up to 1/4 cup nondairy milk (Start with 1 T, and add more as needed)
  • Sweetener (see note below, for amount)
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips
  • 2 to 3 T oats (or flaxmeal) (You can omit, but also omit the milk if you do)
Add all ingredients (except for chocolate chips) to a blender or food processor, and blend until very smooth. Then mix in the chocolate chips.
I made two batches.  One with the peanut butter/biscotti butter and one with oil.  The one on the left is made with oil and not as firm.  Michael loved both of them which says a lot!  He is one picky eater!  Of course both kids liked them but Kyra is not a fan of peanut butter so the second batch was made for her.  

Hope you enjoy it!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Kyle's Creation

 Today I am a guest poster on my mom's blog. This post is about how I made chocolate chip pancakes. As you can see my main ingredients are dark chocolate chips and Bisquick pancake mix. My other ingredients were milk and eggs. I used dark chocolate chips because they are healthier and they were all I could find.  Mom likes the Natural Pancake syrup so I added it in the picture.  Any syrup would do or you could eat them without like Kyra and I did.

Here I mixed everything in the bowl. I started with the mix. Then I poured in the milk, Then I put in my two eggs, and finally I added my chocolate chips. Then I stirred them for about 4 minutes. Then I poured them onto the pan and cooked them and flipped them.

 Here is the finished product. I hope you enjoyed my post. Thanks mom!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The most AMAZING dessert ever and an extra for that potluck!!!!

Oh yes!  You will be the talk of the town (in a good way) with party invites as long as you bring this Amazing dessert!  It is a very easy dessert to make too!  Here is the recipe:

1. 1 bag of Oreo cookies
2. Peanut Butter
3. 1 box of brownie mix

Yep that is it.  3 ingredients!  Now here's how to make it!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line cupcake pan with liners.

Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. For each cupcake cup spread 1 teaspoon of peanut butter over 2 Oreo cookies and stack them on top of each other. Place oreo stacks into the cupcake lined muffin cups. Spoon 2 tablespoons of brownie batter over each stacked oreos and let it run down the sides of the cookies. If you have left over brownie batter, bake separately in a separate baker or muffin tin. Bake cookies and brownies for 18 to 20 minutes, until brownies are cooked through. Let cool completely then serve.   See below for an additional idea on what to do with the left over brownie mix... it includes toffee!!

Makes 12 servings

Recipe from

You can see I am kinda messy! (above)  I cut one in half for you to see.
  These were still warm so they mixed all together and were so good!  These will melt in your mouth!

Now... if you want you can make this with your left over brownie batter..

Toffee bottom:

8 oz (226g) butter (2 sticks), room temperature
1 cup (200g) packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 egg yolks, room temperature
2 cups (250g) flour

This toffee bottom is more of a rich, caramelized cookie than a traditional bricklel toffee.  It makes a firm dough that needs to be pressed into the pan.

Chop butter into pieces and mix with sugar.

Add egg yolks and combine, one at a time.

Gradually fold in flour until just mixed.

Press dough into prepared pan.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, until set and golden brown.

Let cool completely then pour in brownie top!                            

So Scrumptious!!  Enjoy!!

Don't forget to keep checking this week for some of our favorite recipes!  Guest blogger is tomorrow and Friday is a recipe you don't need your fat pants for!


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Clean Eating?

So I am not going to tell you that clean eating is for you.  It is not for me but it is for my friend.  She has a medical condition that requires her to eat "clean."   She says she has never felt better and has lost 10 lbs just by switching her eating to "clean."   So that brings me to why I am writing this blog.  Well, my friend told me about this website called The Gracious Pantry.  On it were "Clean" Pumpkin Spice Pancakes.  Well I was craving some but didn't want all the unhealthy aspects of pancakes so I thought I would give these a try. 
I love them so much!!  They are yummy and delicious!  I eat them before I run for quick carbs that don't weigh you down.  Now I really like Pumpkin Pancakes but I don't want to eat them every day so I had to change the recipe just a bit.  I took out the Pumpkin Spice and added Cinnamon.  Oh yeah!  Add the cinnamon honey butter from Lowes foods and some All Natural Syrup and it is the best!  Even my kids ask for these pancakes.  Kyra ate the stack in the picture!  Try them.  You will be hooked and if you want to eat clean or would like some neat recipes than check out    Below is the recipe for the pancakes above.

Clean Eating Pumpkin Spice Pancakes
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour  (I got this at Whole Foods)
1-1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (any milk will work)  (I use skim)
1 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice (no sugar added)
2 egg whites
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Maple syrup for topping
Step 1 – Whisk together all ingredients (except maple syrup) in a medium mixing bowl.
Step 2 – Using an oil sprayer, spray a non-stick pan with a very light coat of olive oil. Pour on your pancakes and cook until done.
Step 3 – Serve a stack of hot pancakes topped with maple syrup and a side of scrambled egg whites.
Eat and Enjoy!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

I'm a Nut for Nutella!

 So I found a website I really like to use. It is called Stumble Upon. Well I “stumbled upon” this recipe and because I LOVE Nutella I had to try it! The recipe is Nutella Ice Cream. It is a simple recipe that requires two ingredients. I made a ½ recipe to see if we liked it. The full recipe is to blend 6 bananas and 1 cup of Nutella. You will freeze and then eat.

This picture shows what it looks like coming out of the freezer. I left it in the freezer overnight and it had a darker sheen on top. I did not cover it.

Now if you absolutely LOVE chocolate covered bananas you will probably like this recipe. I do not like bananas. So I didn't love it but it is a great alternative for the kids. I also made some with just bananas and peanut butter. That was pretty good too but still a banana flavor. I may have to experiment with this recipe some more!

I have found other recipes and will be posting some over this week hopefully!  Even a guest poster too!  So check back to see what's cooking during the holiday season!

Saturday, December 3, 2011


I have recently learned the proper way to do frozen foods.  Well proper by means of my friend Joleen.  I was always concerned about storage and she said "Use bags".  Well OK then.  I had used bags before but I was sure that there was something more to it.  I also am not a math whiz when it comes to doubling, tripling, or quadrupling a recipe.  Now of course I can do it but who wants to think about it?  Then there is the issue of not having the right ingredients for when you pull out your "meal" and you don't have say... Parmesan cheese or BBQ sauce.  *Sigh*   Yes these are issues we all know.  So she said just use this software called advantage cooking.  It has a trial offer.  So I did.  Well I love it!  I have been cooking up a storm and have a freezer that is filling up fast!   My one tip is to save a shelf to make sure your bags get flat so they can stand up and down in the freezer.    So for you all out there who have never done this.  Start surfing the web for recipes and get making some food.  Your freezer in no time will look like mine!  This way you can sit back relax enjoy the holidays and when January rolls around pull out some Turkey Rice Soup or some Barley Beef Soup and have a bowl with me!

This is my actual freezer.  When I was surfing around for recipes I found that there were lots of people who will tell you about freezer cooking but none show you their freezer.  It seemed like I saw the same picture over and over.  So here is mine.  As you can see I still have room for more.  I would love to have more recipes so feel free to comment and tell me yours!


Friday, November 4, 2011

Should we have this for dinner?

Although they are not my in-laws... this is still funny and they are Michael's in-laws!  Ha! Ha!  We are waiting for my parents to come visit today.  I will not tell you what else we are doing.  ;-)


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Me Too

Everyone wants to feel included.  I too have wanted to feel that way.  Especially in my church regardless of which one I was attending.   I have never been a good one at repeating a story or getting the "message" correct.  I am including a link here to a message from Crosspointe Church in Raleigh where we attend church.   I encourage you to listen to Steve who by the way is from Cedarville, Ohio so I feel a kinship with him!  He has made some things very clear to me.  If you don't have time for the message please see my thoughts (and paraphrasing from his message) below.

These were some of the things that Steve spoke about that resonated with me.

Beliefs, Behavior, Belonging.

When you talk with someone about your belief system you always start there.  Let's talk about what you believe and what I believe.  We are at odds and I am right.   We start with our belief because we learned that it is the root of who we are.  Beliefs-  Doctrines, Creeds, Denominations, Politics, etc.  The way we organize our thoughts.

Associated behaviors with those who believe with whatever I believe.  The do's and don'ts of religion. We came to Jesus and then said  "I believe this and I better quit doing that".  There is a whole list of  "Do's" that now I will be doing... rituals, ceremony, customs, celebrations, study, meditation, reading, attendance, where you attend...etc.   There is a whole list.   Here is what in our heads... here is how you can expect us then to behave.

The progression is then inclusion...belonging.
You weren't one of us but because you confessed this and said that you believe this and your willing to cut out and get rid of x, y, and z. Then you can belong.  Membership.  I can test you by watching everything you do.  And some people are more of a member than others because they have more "knowledge".  A worth system has been developed.

This is a system that you have to earn.  Do I believe right? Do I behave right?  If so, then now I can believe.  This causes anxiety.  (We call it peace!)  If I don't get the first two right then I won't belong.  You can be ex-communicated by coming to a different conclusion.  This system is the birthplace for hypocrisy and lying.  It makes us lie to belong.  Family is supposed to be different from the playground.

Belonging, Behavior, Belief.

He suggests flipping things over.  Belonging as a default kills tribalism.  If you do this you kill tribalism.  It kills it.  It evens the playing field.  That no matter what you do you are family.

The very first thing that is true, before you do anything right or wrong, before you speak a word, before you knock something over, YOU BELONG.  That is the design.

There may be consequences that naturally occur by what you do but it won't be revenge.
What about boundaries?
Boundaries serve not the purpose of protecting just you but of making sure that wisdom and love are employed.  Without somebody's broken dark toxicity raining down on you.
When a blind person steps on your foot you don't take revenge.  It is the same pain as if a seeing person stepped on you but somehow when they're blind you don't get mad. You say "Oh it's because they're blind".
A boundary is to pull your foot back!  Then find out how to love this person according to where they are.  Belonging first is hard.

Behavior then follows... I don't do this so I will get voted off the island.  It is like family.  Why do you do things for your family.  I don't know... I just do because it is family.  Your behaviors are not rooted in I have got to perform this way or else but in expression of who you belong to.  I also don't do things well but I am in a family and am loved.  

Now we are talking about beliefs because those are our beliefs.  We are no longer stuck on the playground.  This is how they talked about early Christians.  Not what knowledge they had but how they loved each other.
Doctrine is just how we try to fathom the unfathomable.  You don't have to agree you just keep talking and having wise discussions within the family. In this process you allow someone to live through the process.

Here's what I heard clearly and believe...  There's nothing you can do to get me off your team.    Nothing I do should keep me from him.  I belong to him.  You belong to him.  We are on the same team.

I am letting go of the first way of thinking.  I grew up in churches that put their beliefs first.  Consequently, I had behaviors that showed I belonged.

It takes extraordinary strength that goes far beyond your will power that's why the spirit lives in our midst.  You have to choose to join in and say... "I live differently now."  I am no longer on the playground.  I have power that resurrected the corpse of Messiah in me.  I will not go backward and be tribal again.

Here is my prayer and acknowledgement to God.

Nothing can take me from your great love....I belong to you.


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Joleen's Homemade Granola Breakfast Bars

So here is the quick story behind the Granola bars.  My friend Joleen's husband used to eat Pop-Tarts everyday for breakfast.  Over the years, she could no longer stand to see him eat something so unhealthy.  He told her that when she could come up with something that was as cheap and tasted as good as Pop-Tarts he would give them up.  Well she did!  She found this recipe and Viola!   Below I made the recipe so you could see how quick and easy they are to make.   I doubled the recipe but will put the single recipe below.

Take 3/4 cup of brown sugar and 1/3 cup of oil and mix it together.  Add in 2 Tbs of honey, 1 tsp of vanilla and 2 eggs.  (If you double the recipe go down to 3 eggs)

Add 1 cup of flour, 1/4 tsp of salt, 1 tsp of baking powder, and 1 tsp of cinnamon.  I don't measure the cinnamon.  I just dump it till it smell good!

Add 1 1/2 cups of oats.

Add 2 cups of Rice Krispies.  This is a filler.  If you need to do more oats you can.  Generic cereal works as well.  

Place the mixture on a Jelly Roll or as I call it a Cookie Sheet!  Pat it until it fills the pan and is thinned out.

Ready for the oven!   350 degrees for 10 minutes.  

Oven times will vary.  You want it to be lightly golden and still springy to the touch.  Cut into squares.  Store in Tupperware like container.  (Pan on the left is done.  Pan on the right is ready to go into the oven.)

A couple tips!

1.  You must double the recipe if using the cookie sheet.  Otherwise use a 9x13 and bake for 20-25 minutes. Trust me.  You will want to double the recipe!
2.  You can add all kinds of other ingredients at the end such as:  Chocolate Chips, Coconut, Peanut Butter, Dried Fruit or as Kyle asked tonight "Can we add some Rum?"  Not sure where that came from but hey, it might be good!
3.  These can be frozen.  They will come out of the freezer and be just as yummy.  You can also warm them back up in the microwave.  

Nutritional value for a double recipe cut into 35 squares is:

Nutrition Facts
  35 Servings
Amount Per Serving
  Total Fat5.0 g
     Saturated Fat0.6 g
     Polyunsaturated Fat1.7 g
     Monounsaturated Fat2.9 g
  Cholesterol15.9 mg
  Sodium50.8 mg
  Potassium103.6 mg
  Total Carbohydrate25.9 g
     Dietary Fiber1.7 g
     Sugars12.8 g
  Protein1.9 g
  Vitamin A1.0 %
  Vitamin B-121.8 %
  Vitamin B-62.4 %
  Vitamin C0.6 %
  Vitamin D1.3 %
  Vitamin E4.8 %
  Calcium3.1 %
  Copper5.9 %
  Folate5.8 %
  Iron8.9 %
  Magnesium6.9 %
  Manganese39.9 %
  Niacin2.9 %
  Pantothenic Acid    2.0 %
  Phosphorus    9.0 %
  Riboflavin4.2 %
  Selenium2.4 %
  Thiamin9.8 %
  Zinc4.2 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.