Sticky Buns

I made these Christmas morning and they were perfect. The whole thing came out looking so nice. It was absolutely delicious. We basically finished off the whole thing ourselves.

I found this idea on Pinterest, and the recipe on this website. It has nice step-by-step pictures. So easy and so good!



2 tubes of biscuits
3 tbsp butter, melted
1/2 c pancake syrup
1/3 c packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a flute pan with cooking spray. Combine syrup and melted butter in a small bowl and set aside. In another bowl combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and pecans. Pour about half the syrup mixture in the bottom of the pan, then sprinkle half the brown sugar mixture over the syrup.

Now, lay the biscuits in the bottom of the pan, overlapping the edges closely to form a ring (see picture below). Top with the rest of the syrup and brown sugar mixtures. Bake for 25-30 min or until golden brown. Cool for 1 min in the pan, then invert onto a serving plate.

Homemade Calzone

This was the funnest thing EVER to make! And so good too. A must try! I saw this on Pinterest and found the recipe here. There are great step-by-step pictures at the site to help.

So... this is what is looks like on the website:





And here is ours:



We put a little cheese on top of the loaf so it looks a little different.
Ok, so here's what you will need, and what we did:

pizza dough
pizza sauce
cheese
can of mushrooms
olives
pepperoni

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. I had two things of refrigerated pizza crust (thin crust). So, I put those together on parchment paper, and rolled it out into one big rectangle. Then, put pizza sauce down the middle, followed by pepperoni, olives, mushrooms, cheese, etc. Cut the dough on the sides at about 3/4 inch intervals. After all the cuts are made, start folding them over like the pictures on the website show. If you have used parchment paper, you can easily just pick up the loaf and move it to a baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for about 25 min. So fun and easy!!!

Triple Chocolate Cookie Balls

I found this recipe on  kraft.com and it looked pretty easy so I had to give it a try. I've never made anything like these before and they are really, really good!


1 pkg instant chocolate pudding (3.9 oz size)
1/2 c cold milk
1 pkg Oreo cookies (36 cookies), finely crushed
1 1/2 pkgs Baker's Semi-Sweet Chocolate (12 squares), melted
2 squares Baker's White Chocolate, melted

Beat pudding mix and milk in a medium bowl with whisk for 2 min. Add cookie crumbs and mix well. Shape into 1 inch balls and put on wax paper on a cookie sheet. Freeze for 15 minutes. Melt chocolate and dip balls in chocolate. I melted the chocolate in a shallow bowl and rolled the cookie balls around in it. Put pack on wax paper on cookie sheet and refrigerate 20 minutes. Melt the white chocolate and drizzle it over the cookie balls. Refrigerate 10 minutes or until firm.

Honey Beer Bread

Found this delicious bread recipe on Pinterest and it came from this website. This could not have been easier nor more delicious!


3 c flour
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp honey
1 bottle of beer (12 oz)
4 tbsp melted butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and grease loaf pan. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Using a wooden spoon, stir the beer and honey into the dry ingredients until just mixed. Put the honey in the microwave for a few seconds beforehand so it mixes in more easily. Pour half the melted butter into the loaf pan, then spoon the batter into the pan. Pour the rest of the butter on top. Bake for 50-60 minutes, until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.

Slow-Cooker Flank Steak over Pasta

Mmmmmmmmm. This dish reminds me of the beef stroganoff recipe on here, but it's still different, and super delicous.... plus easy of course, because I only make easy recipes. :) This is another one from Spark Recipes.


2 lbs of flank steak
1 can red-fat cream of mushroom soup
1 can red-fat tomato soup
1 pkg (1 oz) dry onion soup mix
4 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Put steak in crock pot. In a bowl, mix together remaining ingredients. Pour over steak. Cook on low 8-10 hours. When the meat is done cooking, you can take it out and cut it up into pieces, but it will be so tender it will just fall apart anyway. You could serve over whatever - we did pasta! I liked the rotini because it absorbed all the delicious sauce well. :)

Slow-Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

It smelled so good when I came home! I love my crock pot.


2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 onion, sliced
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
6 oz sliced mushrooms
1 small green bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp celery powder
1/2 c dry white wine
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp crushed red pepper

Place chicken in crock pot. In a large bowl, mix together all the other ingredients. Pour over chicken. Cook on low for 8 hours. We had it with pasta. Yum!

Slow-Cooker Beef Stroganoff

I cooked 2 new crock pot recipes 2 nights in a row! This one is also from sparkrecipes.com and it's light. This really is one of my favorite recipes I've made in my crock pot... and I only post the recipes that are delicious on my blog. Will and I both agreed that it was one of the best things ever. You MUST try this recipe. So, so, so easy.


1 lb top sirloin
1 can red-fat cream of mushroom soup
1 can mushrooms
1/2 pack dry onion soup mix
2 beef bouillon cubes
1/2 soup can of water
1/2 c light sour cream
egg noodles

Put sirloin in crock pot. Mix together cream of mushroom soup, water, onion soup mix, and mushrooms. Add beef bouillons and pour over meat. Cook on low 8 hours. When it's done, turn off the crock pot and let it cool for 5 min before adding sour cream to thicken. Serve over egg noodles (or whatever you like).

Ok one more time: THIS IS SO GOOD!

Crock Pot Chicken & Dumplings

I found this healthy recipe on sparkrecipes.com. So easy and so delicious. Just what I love!


1 lb chicken breasts
1 can red-fat cream of mushroom soup
1 can red-fat cream of chicken soup
1/2 c water
1/2 tsp each, oregano, basil, pepper
1 1/2 c frozen mixed veggies
1 small onion, diced
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 can red-fat biscuits

Cut chicken breasts in half (I just bought chicken tenders) and place in crock pot. Add onion and garlic. With a whisk, stir together soups, water, and spices. Add frozen veggies to this mixture and stir. Pour over chicken. Cook on low 8 hours. After 8 hours, cut biscuits into strips or quarters, and set on top of soup mixture - or mix everything together. Continue cooking for 2 hours on low. If you want more of a doughy dumpling, stir into mixture. Otherwise, just set them on top.

Slow-Cooker Balsamic Chicken

First time I've tried a new recipe since school started (I've been doing lots of repeats) and it's delicious! And super easy, of course. The recipe came from The Skinny Crock Pot.


3-4 chicken breasts
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 onion thinly sliced (not chopped)
4 garlic cloves
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp each: dried oregano, basil, and rosemary
1/2 tsp thyme
ground black pepper and salt to taste

Pour the olive oil on bottom of crock pot add chicken, plus salt and pepper. Put sliced onion on top of chicken, then put in all the dried herbs and garlic cloves. Pour in vinegar and top with tomatoes.

Cook on Low 8 hours (or high 4 hours) and serve over angel hair pasta.

Mexican-Style Stuffed Peppers

These were fun to make.


6 medium green bell peppers
1 lb lean ground beef
1/3 c chopped onion
1/3 c chopped celery
3 c cooked rice
1-1/4 c salsa, divided
1 tbsp chopped green chilies
2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 c shredded red-fat Mexican cheese blend

Cut the tops off peppers and remove all the seeds. Pour about 2 inches of water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add peppers, cover, and cook 3-5 minutes. Remove peppers and rinse in cold water. Cook rice according to kg directions. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet, brown ground beef along with celery and onions. Stir in cooked rice, 1 c salsa, chilies, chili powder, and salt. Spoon into peppers. Place peppers in a 9x13" cooking dish sprayed with cooking spray. Add 1/4 c water to dish and cover with foil. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and add salsa and cheese to the top of peppers. Return to oven and bake uncovered for an additional 3-5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Cinnamon Applesauce and Banana Pancakes

I woke up early on my last Friday morning off to make these!


1 1/2 c flour
2 tbsp sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 mashed bananas
1/2 c (1 container) cinnamon applesauce
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Combine all dry ingredients and mix in everything else!

Granola Bars

I made this on a whim - I saw the recipe and realized I had all the ingredients. Really good, especially since school is starting soon. You are really supposed to cut them into bars, but I had a hard time doing that so I kind of just tore them into bars.


3 c quick-cooking oats
1 c chopped almonds
1 egg
1/2 c unsalted butter, melted
1/2 c honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 c sunflower kernels
1/2 c flaked coconut
1/2 c dried cranberries
1/2 c packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon.

Preheat oven to 350. Combine oats and almonds on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake for 15 min or until toasted, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, combine egg, butter, honey, and vanilla in a large bowl. Stir in in sunflower kernels, coconut, cranberries, brown sugar, and cinnamon. After oat mixture is done, stir that in as well. Press into baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake 13-18 min or until set and edges are lightly browned. Cook on wire rack and cut (or tear!) into bars.

Cheesy Salsa Mini Meat Loaves

Such a fun idea... and tasty too! Mmm, looking at the picture below makes me want to go have another.


1 lb lean ground beef
1/2 c finely chopped onions
1 egg
1/2 c crushed crackers (I used red-fat Ritz)
1 1/2 c, divided, Mexican cheese mix shredded
1 c salsa, divided

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine beef, onions, egg, crackers, and 1 cup of cheese with 1/2 c salsa. Press into 12 muffin cups sprayed with cooking spray. Use the back of a spoon to make an indentation in the center of each meatloaf. Put muffin pan on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake for 20-25 min. Top with remaining salsa and cheese, and bake for about 5 more minutes.

Baked Pesto Chicken

How can you go wrong with pesto, tomatoes, and mozzarella? Answer: You can't.


boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I like the thinly-sliced ones!)
1/2 c refrigerated pesto
2-3 plum tomatoes, sliced
block of part-skim mozzarella cheese, sliced

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray. Put the pesto in a medium bowl and toss chicken to coat. Put chicken on baking sheet and bake for 20-25 min or until chicken is no longer pink. Remove from oven and cover with tomatoes and mozzarella. Bake for an additional 5 min or so until cheese is melted.

Onion and Fontina Beer Batter Bread

Another really delicious Cooking Light bread recipe! Mmmmm.


1 tbsp olive oil
1 c diced onion
3 c flour
3 tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 c grated fontina cheese
1 bottle beer 12 oz (amber ale - I used Fat Tire)
1/4 c butter, melted and divided

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, and saute 6 min or until tender. Cool to room temperature. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Make a well in the center of mixture and add onion, cheese, and beer. Stir until just moist. Pour batter into an 8x4" loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Drizzle evenly with 2 tbsp butter. Bake for 25 minutes, then brush with remaining 2 tbsp butter, and continue baking about 20 minutes, or until wooden pick inserted in the middle of loaf comes out clean. Cool 5 min in pan, then cool on wire rack.

Citrus Squares

This is a Shape Magazine recipe I found. I baked these this morning and couldn't wait until tonight to try them. Really tasty and only about 150 cal per square.


For the shortbread:
1/2 c slivered almonds
1/2 c flour
1/4 c powdered sugar
1/4 tsp salt
4 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into 8 chunks

For the filling:
1 c sugar
1/4 c flour
2 tsp grated lemon zest
1 tsp grated lime zest
1/4 c each lemon and lime juice
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 325 degrees and grease square 8x8 cooking pan. To make the shortbread, put the almonds in a food processor and process for 30 seconds or until coarsly ground. Add flour, powdered sugar, and salt and pulse 5 times until mixed. Add butter and process for 10-15 seconds or until no large chunks remain and the mixture is loose and sandy. Press into the bottom of cooking pan and bake for 22-24 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.

While the crust is baking, make the filling. Combine sugar and flour in a large bowl. Add lemon and lime zest, as well as lemon and lime juice. Add eggs and whisk mixture until smooth. Pour filling over crust and return to the oven and bake an additional 30 minutes or until center is set. Cool completely on a wire rack. Sift powdered sugar over squares and garnish with lime before serving. You can also keep refrigerated for up to a day before serving.

French Dip Roast Beef (Slow-Cooker)

Definitely a favorite since I've been on my cooking streak. The flavor is so good and the broth you dip the sandwich in is amazing. Oh, and of course, it's super easy.



3.5-4 lbs boneless chuck roast
1/2 c low sodium soy sauce
1 beef bouillon cube
1 bay leaf
3-4 peppercorns
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried garlic powder
1/2 c chopped onions
french rolls

Put roast in slow cooker and sprinkle with garlic powder. In a small bowl, combine soy sauce, bouillon cube, bay leaf, peppercorns, rosemary/thyme/garlic. Pour over roast, and add just enough water so the roast is almost covered. Sprinkle onions on top, and cook on low for 7 hours or until very tender. Remove roast and shred to serve on sandwich rolls. Reserve the broth and use it on the side to dip the sandwich in. Ah-mazing.

Oatmeal Cottage Cheese Pancakes

Ok, I know it sounds weird... but don't judge! They're delicious and super healthy. Even if you don't like cottage cheese, you'll still like these pancakes. Even Will loved them, and he was a little apprehensive. :)

Update 7/21/13 - It's been 2 years since I first made these. Will asks for these often, and I probably make them once a month maybe. I don't even remember the last time I had a regular pancake!


1 c dry oatmeal
1 c fat free cottage cheese
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp sugar
6 egg whites

Mix all ingredients in a blender and cook like pancakes! These will even get the little bubbles on top so you know when to flip them. Use with sugar-free maple syrup or your favorite pancake topping. This will make about 10-12 pancakes and 1/3 of the recipe is only about 220 calories!

Original recipe found here.

Jello Poke Cake

This is delicious and a great summertime dessert because you use Cool Whip for the icing and it's refrigerated. This is really easy to do and a fun idea. You can even change the cake mix and jello for different times of the year or holidays.


1 pkg white cake mix (eggs, oil, etc)
2 pkg strawberry jello (4.5 serving size each)
2 c boiling water
1 tub Cool Whip Lite

Make cake mix according to package directions. Pour evenly into two 9" round cake pans. Bake according to the cake package. After cake layers have cooled completely, put them back in clean 9" cake pans. Poke holes with a large fork at half inch intervals all over each layer. Mix 2 pkg jello with 2 c boiling water. Stir at least 3 minutes. Using a ladle or something like that, carefully pour jello evenly over each cake layer. Refrigerate 3 hours.

Carefully unmold 1 cake layer by dipping the bottom of the pan in warm water for 15 seconds. Unmold onto plate, and spread with about 1 cup of Cool Whip. Unmold other cake layer the same way, and stack it on top of the iced layer. Frost the top and side of the cake with remaining Cool Whip. Refrigerate at least 1 hour, and store in fridge.

If you have Baker's Semi-Sweet Chocolate squares, you can melt the chocolate, put it in a ziploc bag and cut a tiny hole on the corner. Make designs or whatever you want on wax paper. Put it in the freezer for about 5 minutes to set the chocolate, and carefully peel for cake decorations. I made the word "Mom" and did some swirl things and a heart. :)

Slow-Cooker Shredded Salsa Chicken (for tacos)

Shredded chicken soft tacos! This is one of the easiest things ever to make... these pictures are mine (except for the small last one!)


4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
32 oz salsa (2 bottles)
1 can of corn, drained (14.5 oz)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained (14.5 oz)
tortillas, reduced-fat
guacamole
light sour cream
Mexican cheese blend, part-skim

Put chicken, salsa, corn, and beans in crock pot. Cook on low for 8 hours. Shred chicken with 2 forks 30 minutes to an hour before serving. Use on whatever kind of tortillas you like with whatever toppings.

Light Banana Pudding Squares

Um... YUM. Second picture is mine!


About 35 Vanilla Wafers - Reduced fat, finely crushed
1/4  c margarine, melted
1 pkg Neufchatel cheese, softened
1/2 c powdered sugar
1 tub Cool Whip Free
3 bananas, sliced
2 pkg Vanilla pudding - fat free, sugar free, instant
3 c cold skim milk
1/2 square Baker's semi-sweet chocolate, grated

Finely crush vanilla wafers and mix with margarine. Press into bottom of dish (I used a 9x9"). Beat cheese and sugar in a bowl with wisk until well-mixed. Stir in 1 1/2 c Cool Whip and spread a thin layer of mixture over vanilla wafers. Slice 3 bananas. Lay bananas over the cheese/cool whip layer.


Then, beat pudding mixes and milk with a wisk for 2 min. and spread over bananas. Top with the rest of the Cool Whip and grated chocolate.
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