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Fishy Bento Lunch

Fishy Bento Lunch

2 Pieces of Bread
Tuna
3 Carrots
1 Pretzel Rod
1 Twizzler String
Gold Fish Crackers
Blue Jell-O
1 Clementine
Heart Sprinkles (optional)

(This is never going to stay like this if you were really packing a lunch.  You need filler for the sandwich side, and that yellow?  Yikes, what a mess.  Easy lunchboxes aren’t leak proof.  I have several small boxes of different types to fit into the various wells of our multitudinous lunch boxes.   And I would probably exchange the crackers for little fish cut from carrots; I have a cutter for that.  It’s way carb / sugar heavy)

Yogurt Grahams

Yogurt Grahams

1 graham cracker (large rectangle)
2 tsp. low-fat fruit-flavored yogurt

Break graham cracker in half. Spread yogurt on one half and top with the other. Wrap in plastic wrap and freeze.

Honey Mustard Minion Dip

Honey Mustard Minion Dip

1/2 C. Mayonnaise
2 tsp. Spicy Mustard
2 tsp. Honey
1/2 tsp. Garlic Powder
3 tsp. Vinegar
2 Black Olives
1 Cracker
1 tsp. Mayonnaise (To make the eye)

Cinnamon French Toast Sticks

Cinnamon French Toast Sticks

4 thick slices white Texas Toast bread (stale bread is best)
1½ T. butter
2 eggs
¼ C. milk
Salt
¼ C. sugar
½ tsp. cinnamon powder

Remove the crust and cut the bread into 4 sticks. Using a large bowl, mix the milk and eggs + a pinch of salt. Set aside. In another flat bowl, mix sugar and cinnamon. Cut the butter half and heat it up over medium heat. Quickly, roll the bread sticks into the egg mixture – make sure to shake off the excess and place in a pan. Turn each side until golden brown. Once done, transfer immediately in the cinnamon sugar mixture and roll to coat. This way, the mixture sticks easily when the bread is hot. Melt remaining batter and cook the remaining French toast sticks. Serve immediately and garnish with any syrup.

Owl Lunch

Owl Lunch

1 Babybel
2 Raisins
2 pieces of whole wheat bread (sandwich of choice)
2 Baby Carrots
Pretzel Spoons or Mini Pretzel Twists
1 Pretzel Rod
Kale Chips (or you could use green grapes)

Whole Wheat Walrus Waffles

Whole Wheat Walrus Waffles

2 lg. Eggs
1 ¾ C. Milk
¼ C. Oil (or melted butter)
2 tsp. Honey
1 tsp. ground Cinnamon
¼ tsp. Baking Soda
1 ½ C. Whole Wheat Flour
1 tsp. Baking Powder
1/8 tsp. Salt
Cooking Spray or Butter
2 pieces Cooked Turkey Bacon
1 Banana
3 Blueberries

Preheat waffle iron. In large bowl whisk together the eggs, milk, oil, honey, cinnamon and baking powder until well combined. Add in flour, baking powder, and salt and whisk just until large lumps disappear. Spray or butter your waffle iron and griddle to the directions of your waffle iron manufacturer. Keep warm under foil until all are cooked. To decorate a waffle, cut two slices from a banana for eyes. Add blueberries for pupils, and a blueberry for a nose. Cut the rest of the banana in half and place to resemble tusks. Finally, lay the bacon over the bananas to make a moustache.

Chicken & Egg Breakfast

Chicken & Egg Breakfast

Chicken Pancakes

Pancake Mix (or favorite homemade recipe)
1 Strawberry
1 Hard Boiled Egg
1 Piece of Turkey Bacon
1 Orange Slice
Granola
1 Chocolate Chip

Start out by pouring your pancake mix in a pan on low heat making a large pancake. Cut around the edges in the shape of a chicken. Cut out the tail & wing from the scraps using kitchen scissors. We cut slices from 1 strawberry for the top. We used an orange slice from the beak. We cut a piece of turkey bacon for the feet and waddle & a chocolate chip for the eye. We place granola at the bottom & then placed the hard boiled egg on top.

Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

6 T. unsalted butter
1/3 C. dark brown sugar
1/4 C. plus 2 T. honey
1-1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Heaping 1/8 tsp. salt
2 C. quick-cooking/instant oats, such as Quaker Quick 1-Minute Oats (do not use regular old-fashioned oats)
1-3/4 C. crispy rice cereal, such as Rice Krispies
1/2 C. sliced almonds
1/4 C. flax meal or wheat germ
1/3 C. mini chocolate chips (or to taste)

Line a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil. Spray the foil lightly with nonstick cooking spray. In a large pot, combine the butter, brown sugar and honey. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Lower the heat and simmer until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla and salt. Add the oats, rice cereal, almonds and flax meal (or wheat germ) to the pan and fold with a rubber spatula until well combined. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and press down lightly with a rubber spatula to even out. Sprinkle the miniature chocolate chips over top, adding more or less to suit your taste, and press down firmly with the spatula so the chips stick. The mixture should be tightly compacted in the pan. Place the pan in the refrigerator for 1-1/2 – 2 hours to cool. Use the foil overhang to transfer the uncut bars to a cutting board. Using a sharp knife, cut into rectangles. Store the bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator. If you have to stack them, be sure to use parchment paper or foil in between the layers, otherwise they’ll stick together and fall apart. Note: If you are substituting dried fruit for the chocolate chips, mix it in along with the other ingredients as opposed to sprinkling over top.

Breakfast Chex Mix

Breakfast Chex Mix

2 C. wheat chex
2 C. rice chex
2 C. bran chex
2 C. o’s cereal
1 C. slivered almonds
5 T. butter
1/3 C. honey
2 C. dried bananas, blueberries, cherries, raisins

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Place all the cereals and nuts in a large bowl. Toss to combine. Place the butter in a 13 x 9 inch pan and melt in the oven. Once the butter has melted, add the honey to the butter and whisk together. Pour the cereals into the butter/honey mixture and stir to combine. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Add the dried fruit to the cereal mixture and toss to combine. Serve

No-Bake Chewy Granola Bars

No-Bake Chewy Granola Bars

2 C. quick cooking oats (or pulse whole oats in a food processor a bit)
1 C. rice crispy cereal
1/4 C. shredded coconut
1/4 C. butter
1/4 C. honey or agave
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla

In a large mixing bowl, mix together the oats, cereal and coconut. Set a small saucepan over medium high heat and melt the butter. Add the honey, brown sugar and salt. Stir together then leave it alone as it comes to a boil. Once the boil has reached all the way around the edges of the pan, begin timing. Allow this mixture to boil for 2 minutes and 15 seconds. During this time, you may need to turn the heat down a bit so it doesn’t overflow, but be sure it keeps boiling. Add the vanilla then pour the mixture over the oats, using a rubber spatula to get all the sugar mixture out of the pan. Mix the ingredients together until the oats are completely coated. Add in your desired mix-in then press very firmly into a lightly greased 9×13″ pan. If you like your bars thicker, you can use a smaller pan or double the recipe and use the same 9×13 pan. If you do not press firmly enough, the bars will fall apart when you eat them. Place them in the fridge for 20 minutes then cut to size.

Chocolate Chip: Add 1/2 C. of mini chocolate chips to the finished mixture before pressing into the pan, allowing it cool just a bit or you will end up with melted chips. Sprinkle on a few extra chips over the top after they are pressed into the pan.

White Chocolate Cranberry: Add 1/3 C. of white chocolate chips and 1/3 C. of Craisins to the finished mixture before pressing into the pan, allowing it to cool just a bit first or you will end up with melted chips.

Candy Bar: Add 1/3 C. of Heath bar pieces, 1/3 C. of mini M&M’s and 1/3 C. of chopped pretzels to the finished mixture before pressing into the pan.

Peanut Butter: Add 2 T. peanut butter to the finished sugar mixture before pouring it over the oats. Once mixed with the oats, add 1/2 C. peanut butter chips before pressing into the pan.

Raisin Nut: Add 1/3 C. of chopped raisins and 1/3 C. of chopped pecans to the finished mixture before pressing into the pan.

Popover Pizza

Popover Pizza

popover pizza1 lb. Ground Beef or Sausage
2 C. Pizza or Spaghetti Sauce
12 oz. Mozzarella Cheese, grated
1 C. Flour
1 C. Milk
2 Eggs

In medium skillet, lightly brown sausage/beef and drain off fat. Add sauce and bring to a boil. Lower heat; cook 2-3 minutes. Pour into greased 9×13” baking pan. Sprinkle cheese over top. Combine flour, milk, and eggs; mix well. Pour over cheese. Bake at 425 for 25-30 minutes or until heated through.

Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts

Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts

pumpkin-pie-pop-tarts-edit-srgb2 cups + 2 T. all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. granulated sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, cold and diced into 1/2-inch cubes
4 – 5 T. ice water

1 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup (2 oz) cream cheese, softened slightly (just don’t melt)
2 T. granulated sugar
2 T. packed light-brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. of nutmeg
1/8 tsp. allspice
1 pinch salt
1 large egg yolk
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Icing
1 cup powdered sugar
2 T. half and half, plus more as needed
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

For the crust: In a food processor pulse together flour, salt and granulated sugar. Add butter and pulse mixture until resembles coarse meal (it won’t really come together in pieces much at this point, so don’t over-process, just pulse until butter is no longer in large pieces). Add 4 T. water and pulse several times, if it doesn’t come together in clumps add remaining 1 T. water. Drop mixture onto a clean surface, gather dough into a ball then divide into two portions. Shape each portion into about a 5-inch disk. Cover each with plastic wrap and chill 1 hour. Meanwhile prepare filling.

For the pumpkin pie filling: To a mixing bowl, add cream cheese, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Using a rubber spatula, stir mixture to blend, while running spatula against bowl to smooth any lumps. Lay pumpkin puree on several layers of paper towels. Wrap and press to soak some of the excess moisture from pumpkin, until you have 3/4 cup pumpkin puree. Add reduced pumpkin puree to cream cheese mixture along with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and salt and stir. Mix in egg yolk and vanilla extract. Cover bowl and chill until ready to assemble pop tarts.

To assemble pop tarts: Line two large, rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpats. Working with 1 chilled disk of dough at a time (keep other in fridge to chill), roll dough out onto a floured surface to about 13 by 11-inch rectangle (when edges start to crack a little when rolling, seal them and continue rolling), then trim edges to get a 12 by 10-inch rectangle (to even the edges). Then cut into eight 5 by 3-inch rectangles (cut in half through the longness then three cuts through the opposite). Arrange 4 of the rectangles, spaced evenly apart on prepared baking sheet. Spread a slightly heaping 1 1/2 T. of pumpkin pie filling evenly down the center of each rectangle, leaving about a 3/4-inch rim on all sides uncoated. Dampen fingertips with water and run along uncoated edges of pop tarts. Top each with another rectangle, then seal edges with your fingertips, then reseal with a fork (I didn’t seal with the fork, I just did a double seal with my fingertips because I wanted them to look more like the real thing). Poke the top center of each tart 3 times with a fork. Cover and transfer to freezer to chill at least 2 hours or up to one week. Repeat process with remaining disk of dough. After chilling, position one oven rack near top third of the oven and a second oven rack near bottom third of the oven. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake frozen tarts until golden, rotating racks once halfway through baking, about 25 – 30 minutes. Allow to cool on baking sheet several minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before icing.

For the icing: In a mixing bowl whisk together all icing ingredients well then add more half and half about 1/2 tsp. at a time to reach desired consistency. Spread over tops of cooled pop tarts, leaving a small rim uncoated around all sides. Sprinkle tops with sprinkles if desired and allow glaze to set at room temperature. Store in an airtight container.

Sheet Pan Suppers: Crispy Chicken Strips and Biscuits

Sheet Pan Suppers: Crispy Chicken Strips and Biscuits

Crispy Chicken Strips and Biscuits3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, about 1 ½ lb total
3 T. Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp. Salt
½ tsp. Garlic Powder
½ C. Flour
½ tsp. Baking Soda
3 C. Panko
Olive Oil Cooking Spray
1 T. chopped Fresh Thyme
1/8 tsp. Cayenne
3 large Egg Whites
Dipping Sauce, if desired, for serving

2 C. Flour
1 T. Baking Powder
¼ tsp. Baking Soda
2 tsp. Sugar
1 tsp. Salt
6 T. Cold Butter, Cut into Cubes
¾ C. Cold Buttermilk
1 lg Egg White, beaten
2 T. fresh snipped Chives
½ tsp. Pepper

Preheat oven to 450 with rack in center position. Trim the chicken of fat and then slice them on a diagonal into 1” thick strips. Place chicken in large zip top bag with Worcestershire, ½ tsp. salt, and garlic powder. Seal, shake to coat, and allow to marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk together remaining ½ tsp. salt with flour and baking soda in a small bowl and set aside. Toast breadcrumbs by spreading in an even layer on a sheet pan and mist with cooking spray. Bake, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 5-8 minutes. Remove and set aside to cool. Leave oven on. Line second sheet pan with parchment paper and prepare biscuits. Whisk together flour, baking powder and soda, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Add butter and use your hands or pastry cutter to work it in until the flour mixture looks like pebbly sand. Work quickly to avoid the butter getting too warm. Pour buttermilk over flour mixture and use a fork to bring everything together into a shaggy dough. Knead dough in the bowl once or twice (avoid overmixing) to pick up the sandy pieces at the bottom of the bowl. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and use your hands to pat it into a ¾” slab. Using a 2 ½ inch biscuit cutter, cut out as many biscuits as you can, gently repatting the dough together when necessary; you should get 6 to 8 biscuits. Place biscuits on prepared pan, dab the tops with egg white, and sprinkle with chives and pepper. Bake the biscuits until risen and golden brown, about 18 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. Leave oven on. While the biscuits bake and cool, prepare your chicken coating assembly line. Transfer panko to a bowl, add thyme and cayenne, and stir to combine. Set a wire rack on the now empy sheet pan and place it to one side; place bowl of panko next to it. Whisk the egg whites until frothy in a second bowl; place this next to panko. Place the reserved flour mixture next to the eggs. Remove chicken strips from marinade (discard marinade) and pat dry with paper towels. One by one, coat each chicken strip first in the flour mixture, then in the egg whites, shaking off any excess, and finally in the panko mixture, until totally coated. Place breaded chicken strips on the wire rack, spacing them closely together to fit. Mist lightly with cooking spray. Bake the chicken strips until deeply browned and cooked through, 10-14 minutes. Serve chicken strips warm, along side biscuits and dipping sauce.

Sheet Pan Suppers: Baking Sheet Quesadillas

Sheet Pan Suppers: Baking Sheet Quesadillas

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4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided
12 rectangular tortillas or wraps (available in the deli section of most grocery stores)
½ cup salsa
12 ounces shredded cheddar or Jack cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons sliced green onions
Sour cream, as needed for serving
Salsa, as needed for serving

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Grease a baking sheet with 2 tablespoons of the butter. Arrange half of the tortillas in the prepared pan, overlapping them as needed to fully cover the base. Spread the salsa in an even layer on top of the tortillas. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the salsa. Arrange the remaining tortillas on top of the cheese, overlapping as needed to fully cover the pan. Spread the remaining 2 tablespoons butter evenly over the tortillas. Bake until the tortillas are golden and the cheese is fully melted, 9 to 12 minutes. Garnish with the cilantro and green onions. Serve immediately, warm, with sour cream and salsa on the side

Berry Pudding Cake

Berry Pudding Cake

berry2 cups fresh blueberries, rinsed
2 cups fresh raspberries, rinsed
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon grated orange peel
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Powdered sugar

In a 9- by 13-inch baking dish, mix blueberries and raspberries with 1/4 cup granulated sugar. Spread level. In a bowl, whisk eggs, olive oil, orange peel, vanilla, and remaining 1 cup granulated sugar. Stir in flour, baking powder, and salt until just combined. Pour batter evenly over berry mixture and gently spread to cover berries. Bake cake in a 350° regular or convection oven until top springs back slightly when gently pressed in the center, 28 to 35 minutes. Let cool at least 10 minutes; serve warm or cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar just before serving, and scoop portions onto plates.

Kangaroo Pancakes

Kangaroo Pancakes

Pancake Mix
Cocoa
1 Marshmallow
Chocolate Chips

Start out by making your pancake mix according to directions. Pour a little bit of the mix into a small bowl. This will be the baby. Pour a little bit of cocoa in the rest of the mix. Pour your chocolate pancake mix into a pan on low heat making 3 medium size pancakes & 1 small pancake. Use the small pancake for the head. Use one of the med. pancakes for the body. Cut another one in half & place that on top. This will create the pouch. Cut out the other features like the ears, tail, etc.. Using kitchen scissors with the other half. We cut the feet & hands out the last pancake using round cookie cutters. You can also just use your kitchen scissors. Cut a marshmallow in half for the eyes. We used chocolate chips for the face, hands, & feet. Pour the rest of your regular pancake mix in the pan & make a small circle. Cut out the baby kangaroo & place in the pouch.

Perfect Blueberry Pancakes

Perfect Blueberry Pancakes

Blueberry-Pancakes1 C. buttermilk
1 egg
2 T. canola oil
juice of 1/2 a lemon
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1 C. all-purpose flour
1 T. sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
blueberries
butter for cooking

Mix all wet ingredients together (milk, egg, oil, lemon juice and extracts). Combine the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt) separately, and whisk them into the wet ingredients. Heat a pan and add butter to coat. Make the perfect size pancake by ladling 1/3 C. batter onto the pan, and add a few blueberries to each cake. Cook on one side until bubbles form and the edges become crusty, about 3-5 minutes, then flip and continue cooking until pancakes are golden brown.

School Morning Waffles

School Morning Waffles

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2 C. Bisquick
1 ½ C. Buttermilk
1 large Egg
2 T. Canola Oil

Preheat waffle iron until hot. Mist with cooking spray. Heat oven to 250 degrees with a baking sheet inside (for keeping waffles hot while you prepare more). Mix biscuit mix, buttermilk, egg and oil in mixing bowl and stir until well incorporated. Ladle appropriate amount for your waffle iron into the hot waffle iron and cook until finished (about 1/3 C. for 3-5 minutes). Transfer to oven to keep warm while you repeat with remaining batter. Serve

Dippy Eggs with Cheese-Fried Toast Soldiers

Dippy Eggs with Cheese-Fried Toast Soldiers

Dipper-Eggs-003Note: The recipe indicates to use a cast-iron skillet, but we found a non-stick skillet was easier to use and clean.

2 thick slices sturdy sandwich bread
1½ tablespoons mayonnaise
¼ cup finely grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped chives (optional)
2 to 4 eggs, depending on appetite
Flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Smoked paprika

Fill a saucepan with water deep enough to cover the eggs by 2 inches. Bring the water to a simmer, then reduce the heat so that the water is only quivering. Meanwhile, heat a non-stick or cast-iron skillet over medium heat. On a board, spread one side of each slice of bread with a thin coating of mayonnaise. Sprinkle half of the cheese over the slices, then press gently to secure the fleecy layer of cheese. Flip the bread over. Spread the second side with more mayonnaise and cover with the remaining cheese, patting down again. Fry the bread in the hot pan until evenly golden brown and crisp, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Sprinkle with the chives while hot, then set aside to keep warm if needed. Meanwhile, once the water is at the proper temperature, use a strainer or slotted spoon to carefully lower the eggs into their bath. Cook for exactly 6 minutes, adjusting the heat as needed to maintain the barest simmer, with tiny bubbles just breaking the surface. When the timer dings, remove each egg with the slotted spoon and place in an egg cup. Lop off each top with a knife. Season with salt and pepper and paprika. (Alternative: If you don’t have egg cups, run the eggs under cold water until cool enough to handle, then rap the fat end against the counter and peel gently. Place in a small bowl, split, and dip away.) Cut the toasts into strips and have at it. Be sure to keep seasoning the eggs as you devour them.

Sticky Honey Chicken Drumsticks

Sticky Honey Chicken Drumsticks

6 mediustickym chicken drumsticks (about 120g each)
Dash of freshly ground black pepper

3 T. honey
2 T. light soy sauce
2 T. tomato ketchup
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. sweet chilli sauce
1 tsp. garlic (crushed)
1 tsp. grated ginger

Roasted sesame seeds (optional)

.Remove the papery skin from a clove of garlic. Squeeze the garlic through a garlic crusher. Peel a piece of root ginger and grate it on a fine grater. Combine all the ingredients for the marinade in a bowl and set aside. Slash 2 lines on the drumsticks with a knife and season with freshly ground black pepper. Pour the marinade over to coat the drumsticks and transfer all (together with the liquid) to a ziplop bag. Seal the bag tightly and refrigerate for at least two hours, or overnight (for best results). 30 minutes before baking, remove the drumsticks from the fridge. Preheat the oven at 200°C. Place the marinated drumsticks (together with the marinade) on a baking dish and bake for 40 minutes or until cooked through and golden brown, turning (with a pair of tongs) and basting (note 3) the drumsticks every 10 minutes or so. After baking, filter the leftover sauce through a sieve. Pour the sauce over a small sauce pan and simmer until thicken. Pour over the chicken drumsticks and sprinkle the roasted sesame seeds before serving.

Parmesan Chicken Strips

Parmesan Chicken Strips

cs8 ounces boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fat-free Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon chili powder or Hungarian paprika or to taste
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 egg, beaten

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the chicken into 1-inch strips. Mix the cheese, chili powder, oregano, basil, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a shallow dish. Dip the chicken in the egg and coat with the cheese mixture. Arrange the coated chicken strips on a baking sheet sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and light brown, turning once. Serve with fat-free ranch salad dressing, if desired.

No-Bake Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Granola Bars

No-Bake Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Granola Bars

chocpbgranolabars-72/3 cup light corn syrup (brown rice syrup to keep vegan or honey may be substituted)
Heaping 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt, optional and to taste
2 cups quick cook oats (Quaker, Bob’s, or similar; don’t use whole-rolled oats, pulse/grind briefly if that’s what you have)
2 cups crispy rice cereal (Rice Krispies, Erewhon, or similar)
1 cup mini semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips, divided

Line an 8×8-inch pan with aluminum foil leaving overhang, spray with cooking spray; set aside. In a large, microwave-safe bowl combine corn syrup, peanut butter, brown sugar, and heat on high power for 1 minute; stir to combine. Return bowl to micro and heat for 1 more minute on high power, and stir to combine. Add vanilla, cocoa, optional salt, and whisk to combine. Add oats and stir to combine. Add 1 cup rice cereal and gently stir to combine so cereal doesn’t become too crushed. Slowly add the second cup of cereal, stirring while adding to incorporate. Mixture will be very thick, which is good so bars hold together after they’re set up. However, if your mixture seems extremely thick or dry, and doesn’t quite need the entire second cup or cereal, refrain from adding it all. Add 3/4 cup chocolate chips and stir to combine. The mixture is warm and chips will likely begin to melt, which is okay but the less stirring, the less melting. Reserve remaining 1/4 cup chips. Turn mixture out into prepared pan and pack it down firmly with a spatula or hands. Evenly sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips and very lightly tap them down with a spatula. Cover pan with a sheet of foil (to prevent fridge/freezer smells) and place pan in the fridge for at least 2-3 hours or in the freezer for at least 1 hour, or until bars have set up. Using foil overhang, remove bars from pan, place on cutting board, and slice. Mine are sliced 4-inches long by 1/2-inch wide, similar in size and shape to Quaker Chewy Granola Bars. Wrap bars individually in plasticwarp. Bars will keep wrapped in plasticwrap inside a large ziplock at room temperature for up to 1 month, in the fridge for up to 2 months, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Pancake Apple Rings

Pancake Apple Rings

applepancakeApple cider
Lemon juice and zest
Cinnamon
1 C. Bisquick Baking Mix
1 Egg
1/2 C. Milk
1 Tsp. Pumpkin Pie Spice
Zest of 1/2 Lemon
2 Medium Apples, pared and cored

To make hot apple cider syrup: Add apple cider, lemon juice and zest, and cinnamon to a saucepan and bring to a boil. (Use your own comfort/judgement with how much to mix.) Reduce the liquid to a syrup consistency, by half. Beat baking mix, egg and milk with rotary beater until smooth. Add pumpkin pie spice and lemon zest to batter and mix until incorporated. Grease griddle. Core and cut apples crosswise in 1/8-inch slices. Using a toothpick dip slices into batter. Cook on hot griddle until golden brown, turning once. Serve hot with apple cider syrup.

How to Make Dog Bread

How to Make Dog Bread

Dog Breads

Make the dough from your favorite bread recipe, using a bread maker. Select DOUGH mode. When it’s done, push all the air out of the dough with your hands.  Divide it into 10 (if you make the dough with about 250g flour) and roll each into a ball. Cover with wet paper towels and rest for 15 minutes. Make each into an oval shape.  Cut with a knife to make the ears of the dogs, and let the dough rise until about double in size.  After the rise, make eyes and noses with black beans.  Bake for about 10 minutes at 400F.

French Toast on a Stick

French Toast on a Stick

1bdd21c00605e098019edcde300965151 cup milk (any kind of milk will work)
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 cups brioche, French or sandwich bread (cut into 2 inch cubes)
1 tablespoon butter or oil
16 strawberries, stems removed
2 bananas, sliced into 1/2 inch coins
8 wooden skewers

In a bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, honey and cinnamon. Dip the bread cubes in the milk mixture to coat each side. Heat the butter in a skillet over medium heat and cook the bread for 1 1/2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Skewer the French toast cubes, strawberries and bananas and serve with maple syrup for dipping.

Green Punch

Green Punch

2 .13oz packets unsweetened lemon-lime soft drink mix, such as Kool-Aid
2 C. sugar
1 46oz can pineapple juice
12oz frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
32oz (1qt) ginger ale

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Put 2 quarts of water in a 1-gallon container. Add the drink mix and sugar and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add the pineapple juice and lemonade concentrate and stir well. Just before serving, add the ginger ale.

French Toast Roll-Ups

French Toast Roll-Ups

QB2A1929-500x3568 slices white sandwich bread
Softened cream cheese, diced strawberries, or Nutella
2 eggs
3 tablespoons milk
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 heaping teaspoon ground cinnamon
Butter, for greasing the pan

Cut the crust from each slice of bread and flatten it out with a rolling pin. Place about 1-2 teaspoons of your chosen filling 1 inch from one end of the bread in a strip. Roll the bread up tightly and repeat with the remaining pieces of bread. I really like cream cheese with diced strawberries as one combination and Nutella with diced strawberries as another combination. In a shallow bowl whisk the eggs and milk until well combined. In a separate shallow bowl mix the sugar with the cinnamon. Heat a skillet set over medium heat and melt a tablespoon of butter. Dip each bread roll in the egg mixture coating well and then place them in the pan seam side down. Cook in batches until golden brown, turning them to cook and brown on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Add butter to the pan as needed. Add cooked rolls immediately from the pan to the cinnamon sugar and roll until completely covered in sugar. You can serve with syrup for dipping but I think they’re perfectly good all by themselves.

Easy Pull Apart Pizza Bread

Easy Pull Apart Pizza Bread

1605740f46d196aaf34e77cfb0277d0a2 Cans of Pizza Dough or Biscuits
2 cups Mozzarella cheese (or your favorite cheese)
2 tablespoons of a really good Italian seasoning (link in post) or parsley flakes
â…“ cup olive oil
8 oz. package of pepperoni
1 cup Parmesan cheese
Optional: Add a ½ teaspoon of fresh garlic or garlic powder (it’s amazing)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut pizza dough or biscuits into quarters (as shown in the photo). Cut the pepperoni into smaller pieces. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and toss so that the oil is spread evenly on each piece of dough. Bake for about 30 minutes (or until the top is brown and the center is thoroughly cooked) TIP: Be sure to check it in the middle before you pull it out. If the middle is still not cooked thoroughly be sure to leave it in another 5 minutes at a time until it’s done. Flip over on to a plate while it’s still hot. Serve with a side sauce and enjoy!

Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza

Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza

132faafbf-0a51-494e-8cc1-825a84ef9f05 loaf (1 pound) unsliced French bread
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1 jar (14oz) pizza sauce
1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
8 slices bacon, crisply cooked and crumbled
2 C. finely shredded pizza cheese blend (mozzarella and Cheddar)

Heat oven to 400. Cut bread loaf horizontally in half. Cut bread halves crosswise in half to make 4 pieces (to fit on cookie sheet). Arrange on large ungreased cookie sheet. Cook beef and onion in 10″ skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until beef is brown; drain. Stir in pizza sauce. Spread beef mixture over bread. Sprinkle with tomato, bacon and cheese. Bake 12-15 minutes or until pizza is hot and cheese is melted.

Color Changing Galaxy Lemonade

Color Changing Galaxy Lemonade

Color Changing Galaxy Lemonade

 

5 T. tea containing butterfly pea

10 C. boiling water

1 C. lemon juice or lemonade

Sugar or honey, as desired

Star sprinkles

Ice

 

Prepare the tea at least one hour in advance and allow to cool. Boil water, add the butterfly pea-containing tea and let steep at least 5 minutes. Remove tea leaves and allow tea to cool for at least 15 minutes. Then place the pitcher of tea in the fridge to cool completely. Fill tall glasses with ice and fill 3/4 of the way with iced butterfly pea tea. Stir your sweetener of choice into the lemon juice (sugar, honey or other). Pour about 1/4 C. sweetened lemon juice into each glasses and watch the color change. Add star sprinkles, if desired, to complete the galaxy effect and enjoy!