3 Delicious Recipes for National Pie Day

National Pie Day, celebrated on January 23, is just one week away!

That means TODAY is the perfect day to go out, get some pie-making supplies, and start baking in preparation for this delicious holiday!

Yum!

Need some inspiration on what types of pies to make?

Here are a few of our favorite recipes…

Classic Apple Pie Recipe

It just wouldn’t be National Pie Day without making a traditional, classic, and tasty apple pie.

The following recipe is very easy to make and turns out a great pie every time…

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1/4 tsp. Salt
  • 2/3 cup unsalted butter
  • Ice water
  • 1/4 cup PLUS 1 Tbsp. granulated sugar, divided
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3 lbs. apples, (Granny smith and Macintosh), peeled, cored and sliced, (about 8 cups)
  • 1 Tbsp. milk

Directions:

To make the crust…

  1. Combine 2 cups flour and salt in medium bowl.
  2. Cut in unsalted butter with pastry blender or two knives until coarse crumbs form.
  3. Add 4 to 5 Tbsp. ice water, 1 Tbsp. at a time, until dough forms.
  4. Knead dough with floured hands and shape into two discs, one slightly larger than the other.
  5. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, about 30 minutes.
  6. Preheat oven to 425°.
  7. Unwrap larger disc of dough and roll on lightly floured surface from center to edges to form 12-in. circle. Press into 9-in. pie plate; set aside.
  8. Unwrap remaining pie dough and roll on lightly floured surface to form 10-in. circle; set aside.

To make the filling…

  1. Combine 1/4 cup granulated sugar, brown sugar, remaining 1/4 cup flour and cinnamon in large bowl.
  2. Add apples; toss until coated.

To finish pie…

  1. Arrange apple mixture in pie crust.
  2. Top with remaining pie crust and seal edges. Brush with milk and sprinkle with remaining 1 Tbsp. granulated sugar.
  3. Arrange pie on heated baking sheet and bake 10 minutes.
  4. Decrease oven to 375°. Bake 1 hour or until juices are bubbling.
  5. Cool on wire rack.

Recipe Source: http://www.countrycrock.com/recipes/detail/51680/1/classic-apple-pie

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie Recipe

Chocolate and peanut butter lovers, rejoice!

This chocolate peanut butter pie recipe is sweet, decadent, and bound to be a new family favorite.

Give it a try…

Ingredients:

  • 25 whole chocolate sandwich cookies, such as Oreos
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • One 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • One 8-ounce package whipped topping, such as Cool Whip, thawed

Directions:

To make the crust…

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Crush the cookies until they’re fine crumbs.
  3. Pour the melted butter over the top and stir with a fork to combine.
  4. Press into a pie pan and bake until set, 5 to 7 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.

To make the filling…

  1. Beat the peanut butter with the cream cheese until smooth.
  2. Add the powdered sugar and beat until smooth.
  3. Add in the thawed whipped topping and beat until smooth, scraping the sides as needed.

To finish pie…

  1. Pour the filling into the crust, evening out the top with a knife or spatula.
  2. Chill for at least an hour before serving.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ree-drummond/chocolate-peanut-butter-pie-recipe-2125370

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie Recipe

If you’re someone who enjoys a classic pie with a fun twist, this strawberry rhubarb pie might just be right up your alley!

Satisfy your sweet tooth with this recipe…

Ingredients:

Crust

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup chilled solid vegetable shortening, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 10 tablespoons (about) ice water

Filling

  • 3 1/2 cups 1/2-inch-thick slices trimmed rhubarb (1 1/2 pounds untrimmed)
  • 1 16-ounce container strawberries, hulled, halved (about 3 1/2 cups)
  • 1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg yolk beaten to blend with 1 teaspoon water (for glaze)
  • 1 teaspoon water

Directions:

To make the crust…

  1. Combine flour, sugar and salt in processor.
  2. Using on/off turns, cut in shortening and butter until coarse meal forms.
  3. Blend in enough ice water 2 tablespoons at a time to form moist clumps.
  4. Gather dough into ball; cut in half.
  5. Flatten each half into disk. Wrap separately in plastic; refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
  6. Preheat oven to 400°F.

To make the filling…

  1. Combine first 7 filling ingredients in large bowl.
  2. Toss gently to blend.

To finish pie…

  1. Roll out 1 dough disk on floured work surface to 13-inch round. Transfer to 9-inch-diameter glass pie dish. Trim excess dough, leaving 3/4-inch overhang.
  2. Roll out second dough disk on lightly floured surface to 13-inch round. Cut into fourteen 1/2-inch-wide strips.
  3. Spoon filling into crust.
  4. Arrange 7 dough strips on top of filling, spacing evenly.
  5. Form lattice by placing remaining dough strips in opposite direction on top of filling.
  6. Trim ends of dough strips even with overhang of bottom crust. Fold strip ends and overhang under, pressing to seal. Crimp edges decoratively.
  7. Brush glaze over crust and transfer pie to baking sheet.
  8. Bake 20 minutes.
  9. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. Bake pie until golden and filling thickens, about 1 hour 25 minutes.
  10. Transfer pie to rack and cool completely.

Recipe Source: https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/lattice-topped-strawberry-rhubarb-pie-4459

 

What is your favorite type of pie? Let us know in the comments below!

3 Delicious Hot Cocoa Recipes with a Twist

Winter has arrived, a cool chill is in the air, and it’s the perfect time to cozy up with a steaming cup of hot cocoa.

While we love a classic cup of hot cocoa with marshmallows, we know we have an entire season of sipping this yummy beverage ahead of us. So, we thought it would be fun to share some ideas on how you can add a twist to a classic cocoa recipe.

This year, mix things up and try our recipes that put a twist on one of the world’s most favorite winter drinks.

Enjoy…

Raspberry Hot Chocolate Recipe

Fruit and chocolate are a match made in heaven. So, it’s no surprise that this raspberry hot chocolate recipe is nothing short of amazing.

Give it a try…

Ingredients:

  • 12 ounces (roughly 3 1/2 cups) fresh raspberries
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • Mini marshmallows or whipped cream, for topping

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the raspberries, sugar, and water. Bring to a boil then boil for 3-5 minutes or until the raspberries are cooked down and the mixture thickens.
  2. Remove from the heat and push through a strainer or sieve, discarding the seeds left behind. You should have roughly 1 cup puree.
  3. In another medium saucepan, heat the milk until hot (but not boiling).
  4. Whisk in the cocoa powder, powdered sugar, and raspberry puree. Serve immediately.
  5. Top with marshmallows or whipped cream.

Recipe Source:
https://www.chocolatemoosey.com/2014/12/29/raspberry-hot-chocolate/

Vegan Chai Hot Chocolate Recipe

Hot chai tea or a steaming cup of cocoa…how can you possibly choose? The good news is that with this recipe you don’t have to! Get the best of both worlds by mixing up this vegan chai hot chocolate recipe.

Check it out…

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups vanilla almond milk, sweetened
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon Chai Spice

Directions:

  1. Place all ingredients in a medium size saucepan.
  2. Bring to a rolling boil and stir until spices and cocoa powder have dissolved.
  3. Reduce heat and let simmer for 3-5 minutes.
  4. Enjoy!

Recipe source:
https://fitfoodiefinds.com/2014/09/vegan-chai-hot-chocolate/#_a5y_p=2519397

Red Velvet Hot Chocolate Recipe

This red velvet hot chocolate recipe combines two classics–a traditional cup of hot chocolate and the delicious taste of red velvet cake. And boy is it delicious! “Have your cake and drink it too” with this tasty drink.

Give it a try…

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1/2 teaspoon red gel no-taste food coloring

Ingredients for whipping cream:

  • Vanilla sugar
  • Vanilla sugar whipped cream:
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla sugar (No vanilla sugar? Add regular sugar and a drop of vanilla extract)

Directions:

For whipped cream:

  1. Add heavy cream and vanilla sugar to a cold metal bowl. Either whip by hand with whisk or with hand-held mixer until soft peaks form.

For hot chocolate:

  1. In a small pan, combine milk, chocolate morsels and food coloring. Gently simmer until hot and all the chocolate is melted.
  2. Top with freshly whipped cream.

Recipe Source:
http://www.sheknows.com/food-and-recipes/articles/850687/red-velvet-hot-chocolate-recipe

What’s your favorite hot cocoa recipe? Share it with us in the comments below!

3 Unique Thanksgiving Side Dish Recipes

When invited to someone’s home for Thanksgiving dinner, it’s common courtesy to bring a side dish to share with everyone.

Sounds easy. That is until you’ve waited until the last minute and you scramble, trying to figure out what to bring.

Aunt Betty always brings sweet potatoes. Grandma Doris is sure to bring her famous green bean casserole. And your good friends from down the street already volunteered to bring dinner rolls.

It doesn’t seem like there’s much left to choose from.

Until now…because we are going to recommend 3 unique and delicious Thanksgiving side dishes that are sure to wow everyone at the dinner table. Check out the recipes below…

 

Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

Soup might not be the first thing you think of when it comes to Thanksgiving dinner, but this gourd-based menu item certainly deserves a spot on the menu. Not only does it make a great side dish, it’s also a wonderful main dish option in case you have any vegetarian friends attending the celebration.

Here’s the recipe…

Ingredients:

  • 1 large butternut squash (about 3 pounds), halved vertically and seeded
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • ½ cup chopped shallot (about 1 large shallot bulb)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Up to 4 cups (32 ounces) vegetable broth
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons butter, to taste (substitute olive oil for dairy-free/vegan soup)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the butternut squash on the pan and drizzle each half with just enough olive oil to lightly coat the squash on the inside (about 1 teaspoon each). Rub the oil over the inside of the squash and sprinkle it with salt and pepper.
  2. Turn the squash face down and roast until it is tender and completely cooked through, about 45 to 50 minutes. Set the squash aside until it’s cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes. Then use a large spoon to scoop the butternut squash flesh into a bowl and discard the tough skin.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium skillet (or large soup pot, if you’ll be serving soup from that pot), warm 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add the chopped shallot and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring often until the shallot has softened and is starting to turn golden on the edges, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds, stirring frequently.
  4. If you have a high-performance blender like a Vitamix, transfer the cooked shallot and garlic to your blender. Add the reserved butternut, maple syrup, nutmeg and a few twists of freshly ground black pepper. Pour in 3 cups vegetable broth, being careful not to fill the container past the maximum fill line (you can stir in any remaining broth later). Secure the lid and select the soup preset. The blender will stop running once the soup is super creamy and hot.
  5. If you would like to thin out your soup a bit more, add the remaining cup of broth (I used the full 4 cups, but if you used a small squash, you might want to leave it as is). Add 1 to 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil, to taste, and blend well. Taste and blend in more salt and pepper, if necessary.
  6. Serve immediately (I like to top each bowl with a little more black pepper). Let leftover soup cool completely before transferring it to a proper storage container and refrigerating it for up to 4 days (leftovers taste even better the next day!). Or, freeze this soup for up to 3 months.

Recipe Source: https://cookieandkate.com/2015/roasted-butternut-squash-soup/

Baked Apples with Sausage Stuffing Recipe

Stuffing is a food that’s typically only made during the holiday season. For that reason, it’s no surprise that this treat is often one of the first food items to disappear during a Thanksgiving feast. This year, bring some backup stuffing baked inside sweet, delicious apples.

Check out the recipe…

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon oil or butter
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • ¼ cup finely diced onion
  • ½ package sausage
  • 1 box stuffing mix
  • 1 ¼ cup  chicken broth (or the same amount of water called for in the instructions for the stuffing)
  • 6-12 apples such as Granny Smith, Golden Delicious and Red Delicious

Directions:

  1. Heat the oil in a medium or large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and the celery and cook until softened, about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add the sausage to the skillet and cook thoroughly making sure to break it up into crumbles. Remove from heat.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together stuffing mix and sausage mixture. Add chicken broth in the same amount as water is called for in the stuffing mix instructions. Mine called for 1 1/4 cups of water so I used 1 1/4 cups of chicken broth.
  4. Stir the mixture together so that the stuffing is soft and moist. Feel free to add a little more broth if needed. Set the mix aside.
  5. Slice the very top of the apples off.
  6. Use a spoon or a melon baller to carefully scoop out the entire core of the apple.
  7. Repeat this for every apple.
  8. Spoon stuffing into the apples and place in a high-sided baking dish.
  9. Once all the apples are stuffed and in the dish, carefully pour an additional 1/4-1/2 cup of broth over the apples. Add another 1/4 cup to the bottom of the dish.
  10. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until the apples are softened but not falling apart. If you don’t want the stuffing to brown, cover the dish while baking.

Recipe Source: https://growingupgabel.com/baked-apples-sausage-stuffing-recipe/

Apple Pie Salsa with Cinnamon Chips Recipe

There’s no rule that says Thanksgiving side dishes have to be nutritious or healthy. If you really want to surprise your guests, while also appeasing everyone’s sweet tooth, we suggest you bring this one-of-a-kind dish–Apple Pie Salsa with Cinnamon Chips.

Here’s how it’s made…

Salsa Ingredients:

  • 4 medium Granny Smith apples, diced
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 cup whipped cream (optional)

Cinnamon Sugar Chips Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 5 flour tortillas
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter

Directions for Salsa:

  1. In large sauté pan, combine apples, lemon juice, brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  2. Cook over medium heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in cornstarch. Cook for two minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla. Serve warm. Top with whipped cream just before serving.

Directions for the Cinnamon Sugar Chips:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In small bowl, combine sugar and cinnamon.
  3. Brush both sides of each tortilla with melted butter. Rub cinnamon-sugar mixture onto both sides of each tortilla. Cut tortillas into wedges. Place on ungreased baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 14-16 minutes until brown and crisp. Cool on wire rack.

Recipe Source: http://frostingandasmile.com/archives/1568

What is your favorite unique Thanksgiving side dish? Let us know in the comments below!

3 Delicious Fall-Inspired Apple Recipes

It’s that time of year…apple season!

There’s truly nothing better taking a trip to the apple orchard (or grocery store if you don’t have an orchard near you), handpicking a variety of apples, and then taking them home to cook up a delicious recipe.

Even better, apples are filled with antioxidants and plenty of dietary fiber, so you don’t have to feel guilty when cooking with this sweet, crisp fruit.

Cooking with apples is one of our favorite things about the fall season. And for that reason, we thought it would be fun to share some of our favorite recipes with you.

Check them out below…

Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Apples Recipe

When you think of cooking with apples, chances are you think about dessert—apple pies, cakes, etc. But apples also pair extremely well with savory foods, especially pork. Give this roasted pork tenderloin with apples recipe a try!

Ingredients:

  • 2 pork tenderloins (about 1 1/2-pounds each)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more as needed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus more as needed
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 apples, cored and sliced (we like Granny Smith, Golden Delicious or Braeburn)
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 cup chicken stock, see our homemade chicken stock recipe
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Trim each tenderloin of any silver skin (this can be tough when cooked, just use a small sharp knife and slide the blade under and outward to remove it).
  3. Pat pork dry with paper towels and then rub with 1 tablespoon of the oil and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt.
  4. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a heavy-bottomed oven-safe skillet over medium heat. When the oil is hot and shimmers, add the pork tenderloins and cook, turning occasionally, until evenly browned all over; about 12 minutes. Transfer to a large plate or cutting board. (The pork will not be cooked through).
  5. Keep the pan used to sear the pork on the stove over medium heat. Check the pan, if it looks dry, add 2 to 3 teaspoons of additional oil. (If there is fat left in the pan from cooking the pork, there is no need to add additional oil.)
  6. Add the apples and onions and then cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned around edges, about 5 minutes. Stir in 1 teaspoon of thyme.
  7. Use a pastry brush (or use your fingers) to rub the seared pork all over with the mustard, 2 teaspoons of thyme, and the black pepper.
  8. Place the seared pork tenderloins on top of the apples and onions, and then slide into the oven. Roast 10 to 15 minutes or until an internal thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers between 145 and 150 degrees F. Transfer the pork to a large plate and cover with aluminum foil. Let rest about 10 minutes.
  9. While the pork rests, place the pan with apples and onions back onto the stove and turn heat to medium. Add chicken stock and use a wooden spoon to scrape the pan, lifting any brown bits from the bottom. Bring to a simmer and cook until reduced by half. Add butter and stir until melted.

Recipe source: http://www.inspiredtaste.net/21117/perfect-roasted-pork-tenderloin-recipe-with-apples/

Dutch Apple Pie with Crumb Topping Recipe

We simply couldn’t have an apple recipe blog post without a recipe for an apple pie. This Dutch apple pie uses a crumb topping instead of a pastry shell topping, and boy, is it delicious! Here’s how to make it…

Ingredients:

Crust

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon shortening
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons cold water

Filling

  • 8 cups sliced cored peeled apples
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Topping

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Directions:

  1. In medium bowl, mix 1 cup flour and the salt. Cut in shortening, using pastry blender until particles are size of small peas. Sprinkle with cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost leaves side of bowl (1 to 2 teaspoons more water can be added if necessary).
  2. Gather pastry into a ball. Shape into flattened round on lightly floured surface. Wrap flattened round of pastry in plastic wrap, and refrigerate about 45 minutes or until dough is firm and cold, yet pliable.
  3. Heat oven to 400°F. On surface sprinkled with flour, using floured rolling pin, roll pastry dough into circle 2 inches larger than 9-inch pie plate. Fold pastry into fourths; place in pie plate. Unfold and ease into plate, pressing firmly against bottom and side and being careful not to stretch pastry, which will cause it to shrink when baked. Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1 inch from rim of pie plate. Fold and roll pastry under, even with plate; flute as desired.
  4. In large bowl, toss filling ingredients. Pour into pie plate, mounding apples toward center.
  5. In medium bowl, use pastry blender or fingers to mix butter, 1 cup flour and the brown sugar until a crumb forms. Sprinkle evenly over top of pie. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon granulated sugar on top.
  6. Bake 45 to 55 minutes or until pie crust and crumb topping are deep golden brown and filling begins to bubble. Transfer to cooling rack to cool.

Recipe Source: https://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/dutch-apple-pie/815d821f-058d-4177-93be-e157390e947b

Apple Cinnamon Ice Cream Recipe

Ice cream lovers, rejoice…we have a recipe for apple cinnamon ice cream, and we just know you’re going to love it! Put down the pumpkin spice latte, and instead, indulge in this sweet, creamy treat that’s perfect for the fall! Check out the recipe now.

Ingredients:

Ice Cream Base

  • 2-1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Cinnamon Apple Swirl

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 large apples, peeled, cored, and chopped into small, bit-sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup (packed) brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Directions:

  1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the cream, milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and salt until well-combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours until thoroughly chilled.
  2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Toss the apples with the brown sugar and spices and add to the skillet. Cook, stirring often, until the apples are tender, about 2-3 mins. Remove from the heat and let cool. Cover and refrigerate along with the cream base.
  3. Prior to making the ice cream, whisk the cream base a few times, and pour into an 1-1/2 quart capacity ice cream machine. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions, and churn until the ice cream is frozen and fluffy, about the consistency of soft-serve (generally 20-25 minutes). About three to five minutes before the ice cream is ready, or when the ice cream looks like it is mostly set up, carefully pour in the cinnamon-apple mixture, and continue churning.
  4. Spoon the ice cream into freezer-safe containers, and for a firmer texture, cover and freeze for an hour or two.

Recipe Source: http://www.forkknifeswoon.com/apple-cinnamon-ice-cream/

Do you have a favorite apple-inspired recipe?

Share it with us in the comments below!

3 Healthy School Lunch Ideas Your Kids Will Love

PB&J, ham and cheese, and bologna sandwiches all have one similarity…they are the most common sandwiches that get packed into a kid’s lunchbox. But, after weeks of eating the same 3 sandwiches, lunchtime is bound to get boring.

With the school season quickly approaching for most and already started for others, we thought it might be fun to share some of our favorite and unique brown bag school lunch ideas to spice up your kid’s lunchbox.

And not to worry…all of these recipes are easy to make, can be prepared ahead of time, and are good for your kid’s growing body.

Try some of these recipes out…

Pasta Salad Recipe

Pasta salad is a great alternative to packing a sandwich every day. When made with tri-color veggie pasta, this meal will keep your kid energized and free from carbohydrate-induced blood sugar crashes throughout the day.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound tri-colored spiral pasta
  • 6 tablespoons salad seasoning mix
  • 1 (16 ounce) bottle Italian-style salad dressing
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 (2.25 ounce) can black olives, chopped

Directions:

1. In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook pasta until al dente, rinse under cold water and drain.

2. Whisk together the salad spice mix and Italian dressing.

3. In a salad bowl, combine the pasta, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers and olives. Pour dressing over salad; toss and refrigerate overnight.

Recipe Source: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/14385/pasta-salad/

 

Crunchy Veggie Rice Paper Wraps Recipe

If your kids are a fan of Asian-inspired dishes, they will love to find these crunchy veggie rice paper wraps in their lunchbox. The best part…these wraps can be made a few days in advance and will keep fresh in your fridge.

Ingredients:

  • 15 rice paper sheets (6 inch)
  • 1⁄2 cup green cabbage, finely chopped
  • 1⁄2 cup fresh carrot, finely chopped
  • 1⁄2 cup sweet onion, finely chopped
  • 1⁄4 cup celery, finely chopped
  • 1⁄4 cup sweet green pepper, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons black sesame seeds
  • 5 ounces imitation crabmeat (optional) or 5 ounces shrimp, chopped (optional)
  • Oriental sweet chili sauce (or any other favorite spicy sauce, allow 1/2 – 1 tsp per roll)

 

Directions:

1. Mix all the ingredients except rice paper and Chili sauce. Shortly before serving soften each rice paper wrap separately. Do this by submerging the wrap in a bowl of warm water for a minute of two.

2. When it is pliable it is ready, so remove that one from the water and drop in another one.

3. Lay out a couple of paper towels and place the softened wrap on the towel.

4. Don’t rub it; just place it on the towel. Place 1-2 tbsp. of the veggie mix in the center of the wrap and add 1/2- 1 tsp. sweet chili sauce.

5. Fold up the bottom and then fold in the sides and roll to form a sealed roll.

Recipe Source: http://www.food.com/recipe/crunchy-veggie-rice-paper-wraps-89246

 

Whole Wheat Waffle Strips Recipe

Breakfast foods are one of our favorites. So, we thought, why not pack them for lunch? This whole wheat waffle recipe is easy to make and is a treat any kid would love to take to school. Throw in some cut-up fruit and a yogurt as sides, and you’ve got a well-balanced meal in a box.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour or Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 cups lukewarm milk
  • 1/3 cup melted butter or vegetable oil

Directions:

1. Preheat your iron while you make the waffle batter.

2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, and butter or oil.

4. Mix together the wet and dry ingredients, stirring just until combined. The batter will be a bit lumpy; that’s OK.

5. Cook the waffles as directed in the instructions that came with your waffle iron.

6. Cut waffles into strips, put the strips in a container, and throw the container into your kid’s lunchbox. Option to add a smaller container of maple syrup if desired.

Recipe Source: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/whole-wheat-waffles-recipe

Do you have any unique lunchbox recipes your kids love? Share them with us in the comments below!

 

 

3 Grilled Dinner Recipes the Entire Family Will Enjoy

Tired of eating the same foods every week? We don’t blame you. While your kids may not mind eating cartoon-shaped, cheese-covered noodles for dinner every night, we know that your more sophisticated palate may be craving a few new recipe options.

For that reason, we decided to pull together 3 of our favorite dinner recipes.

But here’s the best part…we’re not only giving you some new recipes to try out. We’re sharing recipes that are easy to make, healthy, and—unless you have incredibly picky kids—please all of your family members’ palates.

Get the recipes now…

BBQ Chicken Recipe

BBQ chicken is a classic summertime dinner staple. This recipe is savory, delicious, and best of all, takes less than an hour to make! Give it a try…

Ingredients:

  • 1 (3 1/2-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons minced onion
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 to 1 teaspoon hot sauce, (recommended: Tabasco)
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons chopped scallions (white and light green parts)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated lime zest
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Lime wedges, for serving

Directions:

1. Mix up the BBQ sauce.

Easy BBQ Sauce:

In a small bowl, whisk together the ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, onion, mustard, hot sauce, and black pepper. Stir in the scallions, lime zest, and lime juice. Can be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 week.

2. Prepare a medium-hot grill or preheat the broiler. If using the broiler, line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.

3. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, to taste. Put the chicken on the grill or, if broiling, put it on the prepared baking sheet. Grill or broil, 4 inches from the heat, turning once, for 10 minutes per side.

4. Put 1/2 of the BBQ sauce in a small bowl, for drizzling and serving. Reserve.

5. Baste the chicken with the remaining sauce and grill or broil for 5 minutes more. Transfer the chicken to a serving platter, drizzle with some of the reserved sauce, and serve with lime wedges and the remaining reserved sauce.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/easy-after-work-bbq-chicken-recipe-1921598

Orange Garlic Tuna Steaks Recipe

Fish is a very healthy food that is full of important omega-3s. Even if you don’t care for fish, we encourage you to give this recipe a try. The delicious orange garlic marinade masks any unpleasant fishy tastes. Try it out…

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 (4 ounce) tuna steaks

Directions:

1. In a large non-reactive dish, mix together the orange juice, soy sauce, olive oil, lemon juice, parsley, garlic, oregano, and pepper. Place the tuna steaks in the marinade and turn to coat. Cover, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

2. Preheat grill for high heat.

3. Lightly oil grill grate. Cook the tuna steaks for 5 to 6 minutes, then turn and baste with the marinade. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, or to desired doneness. Discard any remaining marinade.

Recipe Source: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/39455/marinated-tuna-steak/

Grilled Portobello Burger Recipe

For those of you who are vegetarians—or simply love your vegetables—you definitely want to add this recipe to your menu! This hearty, savory Portobello burger, topped with homemade onion jam is bound to get your mouth watering. Give it a try…

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup low-fat plain yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 medium-large red onions, thinly sliced (about 2 pounds)
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 4 large Portobello mushrooms, (about 1 pound) stemmed
  • Lettuce leaves
  • 4 whole grain buns, or whole wheat English muffins, split and toasted

Directions:

1. Put the yogurt in a paper towel-lined strainer set over a bowl, set aside to drain and thicken, about 60 minutes. Discard the watery liquid. Whisk the horseradish into the thickened yogurt.

2. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a medium skillet, over medium heat. Add the onions, 1 thyme sprig, and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook, covered, until the onions have wilted, about 10 to 15 minutes (give them a stir every now and then with a wooden spoon to prevent them from sticking). Add the red wine, and simmer over high heat until most of the wine gets absorbed into the onions. Add the honey and red wine vinegar and simmer gently until the onions get jam-like, about, about 15 minutes.

3. Preheat a stove top grill pan over medium-high heat. Whisk the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, garlic, and balsamic vinegar in a bowl. Strip and add the leaves from the remaining sprig of thyme.

4. Coat the mushroom caps all over with the flavored olive oil. Grill the mushrooms, turning as needed, until tender but not mushy about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Season with the salt and pepper.

5. Sandwich the mushroom between the buns, top with some of the onion jam, some lettuce, and a dollop of the horseradish cream. Serve warm.

Do you have a favorite grilling recipe? Share it with us in the comments below!

National Ice Cream Day Celebration Recipes

One of our very favorite holidays is just around the corner…National Ice Cream Day! We can’t wait to celebrate with a scoop (or two, or three!) of our favorite ice cream flavors.

National Ice Cream Day falls on July 16 this year. If you had no idea that this delicious holiday was happening in a less than a week, not to worry!

To help ice cream lovers across the country prepare for the celebration, we’ve decided to put together a handful of our favorite ice cream recipes. Check them out, stock up on all the ingredients you need to make the recipes, and you’ll be prepared to celebrate this decadent holiday!

Salted Caramel Pretzel Milkshake Recipe

This sweet and salty recipe will make you wish National Ice Cream Day was every day! Give this recipe a try…

Ingredients:

Sea Salt Caramel Sauce

  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup Karo® Light Corn Syrup
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream OR canned coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Salted Caramel Pretzel Milkshake

  • 2 cups vanilla ice cream
  • 1/4 cup thoroughly chilled Sea Salt Caramel Sauce
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup salted caramel pretzel pieces
  • whipped cream, optional

Directions:

Caramel Sauce

  1. Combine brown sugar, corn syrup and butter in a 1-quart saucepan. Stirring frequently, bring to a full boil over medium heat and boil 1 minute.
  1. Remove from heat; immediately stir in cream, sea salt and vanilla.
  1. Refrigerate to store. Microwave 30 seconds and stir before serving.

Salted Caramel Pretzel Milkshake

  1. Combine ice cream, sea salt caramel sauce, milk, and salted caramel pretzel pieces in a blender.
  1. Blend until smooth.
  1. Pour into 2 glasses and, if desired, garnish with whipped cream, more caramel sauce and pretzel pieces.

Recipe Source: http://www.mybakingaddiction.com/salted-caramel-pretzel-milkshake/

Peanut Butter Ice Box Ice Cream Cake

It wouldn’t be a celebration without a cake—made of ice cream! Try your hand at making an ice cream cake with this recipe…

Ingredients:

Chocolate Cake

  • 1 cup oil
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 cup coffee, brewed strongly
  • 1 cup Dutch cocoa powder
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • Pinch salt

Ice Cream Cake

  • 1 pint chocolate ice cream
  • 2 cups creamy peanut butter
  • 1 pint vanilla ice cream
  • Chocolate cake

Directions:

1. Make the chocolate cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Choose between a 10 by 3-inch round or a rectangular shaped baking pan and spray it with baking grease or butter and then line the bottom with parchment paper.

2. Combine the oil and the sugar in mixer until well blended. Add the eggs and the vanilla extract and continue to mix until well blended. Add the milk and the coffee.

3. Sift all of the dry ingredients and then add them to the wet ingredients in three batches allowing each batch to be thoroughly absorbed.

4. Pour the batter in prepared pans and bake for approximately 25 minutes or until a skewer is clean when removed. Allow to cool before unmolding. Once chocolate cake has cooled, unmold, and refrigerate overnight to allow it to cool thoroughly.

5. Make the ice cream cake: Cut the chocolate cake horizontally to make 2 layers out of the 1 layer and slide 1 of the layers onto a plate or cake board attempting not to break the layers.

6. Line the same pan used to bake the chocolate cake in plastic wrap (the plastic will help you remove the ice cream cake from the pan once it is set, so make sure to use a large enough piece and slide 1 of the half layers of chocolate cake into the pan). Make sure that it rests firmly in the bottom of the pan and, if the plastic wrap has slipped in, adjust so that it spills over the sides of the pan.

7. Empty a pint of chocolate ice cream, or your favorite brand, into a mixer and soften until it is easily spread; do not let it become runny. Pour the ice cream into mold over chocolate layer and spread evenly with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Return to freezer until set, approximately 2 hours.

8. Soften 2 cups of creamy peanut butter in the microwave without letting it get runny, approximately 2 minutes. Then pour the peanut butter over the chocolate ice cream. Using a spatula or the back of a spoon, spread the peanut butter evenly over the chocolate ice cream. Place the second half of the chocolate cake layer over the peanut butter and pat down firmly. Return to freezer until set, approximately 2 hours.

9. Empty a pint of vanilla ice cream or your favorite brand, into a mixer and soften it until it can be easily spread. Pour into mold over chocolate layer and spread evenly with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Return to freezer and allow to set overnight.

10. To unmold, simply invert over cake board or plate, place a warm towel over the pan for a couple of minutes. The cake should slide out without any problems. Grab ahold of the ends of the plastic wrap, and give it a tug if it is stubborn. Invert back so that vanilla ice cream is on top. Decorate with melted chocolate or whipped cream.

11. Drizzle with melted chocolate.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ice-box-cafe-peanut-butter-ice-cream-cake-recipe-2013443

Ice Cream Sundae

Last, but certainly not least, we recommend making one of the most timeless, ice cream-based desserts in the history of ice cream…a sundae!

Ingredients:

  • Ice cream (any flavor you love!)
  • Toppings of your choice

Here’s a list of our favorite toppings for inspiration:

  • Hot fudge
  • Sprinkles
  • Whipped cream
  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
  • Pineapple
  • Bananas
  • Caramel sauce
  • Cookie crumbles
  • Cherries

Directions:

1. Scoop your favorite ice cream into a bowl.

2. Add your favorite topping.

3. Enjoy!

What’s your favorite ice cream-inspired dessert? Let us know in the comments below!

5 Homemade Delicious and Nutritious Popsicle Recipes

There’s nothing better than a frosty sweet treat after a long day of playing or working in the hot sun. Unfortunately, a lot of us end up reaching into our freezers only to grab popsicles filled with sugars and preservatives.

Now that doesn’t sound refreshing or appetizing!

While there’s nothing wrong with eating a store-bought popsicle from time to time, we figured you might like the option to make your own popsicles, made with fresh fruit and natural ingredients.

Here are a few of our favorite delicious and nutritious popsicle recipes. Give them all a try!

Strawberry Buttermilk Pops

It’s the perfect season for fresh strawberries. Visit a local berry-picking farm and grab a bushel of berries for this delicious strawberry buttermilk popsicle recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound strawberries, hulled
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Puree the strawberries, buttermilk, yogurt, honey, sugar, and salt in a blender until smooth.
  2. Pour the mixture into 8 4-ounce ice-pop molds, dividing evenly. Insert ice-pop sticks and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours and up to 4 days.

Recipe Source: https://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/browse-all-recipes/strawberry-buttermilk-pops

Cucumber, Agave, Mint Pops

Looking for a guilt-free desert to try? This recipe is it! Made with cucumbers and mint leaves—plants you can grow in your own summer garden—this refreshing pop is as nutritious as it is delicious.

Ingredients:

  • 2 large English cucumbers, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 1 cup fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 cup agave nectar
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Puree the cucumber, mint, lime juice, agave, and salt in a blender until smooth. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer, pressing with a spatula to remove as much liquid as possible.
  2. Pour the mixture into 8 4-ounce ice-pop molds, dividing evenly. Insert ice-pop sticks and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours and up to 4 days.

Recipe Source: https://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/browse-all-recipes/cucumber-agave-mint-pops

Peaches and Cream Pops

If you have a sweet tooth, this peaches and cream popsicle recipe, made with peach nectar and brown sugar, is for you. This popsicle is so fresh and tasty, it’s like eating a peach from your local roadside famer’s stand.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups peach nectar (100% peach juice)
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Whisk together the peach nectar, cream, sugar, ginger, and salt in a large bowl until smooth.
  2. Pour the mixture into 8 4-ounce ice-pop molds, dividing evenly. Insert ice-pop sticks and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours and up to 4 days.

Recipe Source: https://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/browse-all-recipes/peaches-cream-pops

Dairy-Free Cherry Almond Pops

If you’re sensitive to dairy products, but are still looking for a creamy and delicious popsicle recipe to try, we highly recommend this dairy-free cherry almond pop recipe. This recipe, made with fresh cherries, almond milk, and lemon juice, is packed full of bright and tangy flavors.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups pitted cherries (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 1/2 cups almond milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Puree the cherries, almond milk, sugar, lemon juice, almond extract, and salt in a blender until smooth.
  2. Pour the mixture into 8 4-ounce ice-pop molds, dividing evenly. Insert ice-pop sticks and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours and up to 4 days.

Recipe Source: https://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/browse-all-recipes/dairy-free-cherry-almond-pops

 Grape, Green Apple, Kale Pops

If you love tart and sour treats, this grape, green apple, and kale pop is perfect for you. The best part…the flavors of the grapes and green apples are so powerful you won’t even notice you’re getting a serving of antioxidant-rich kale in your dessert.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups white grape juice
  • 2 cups seedless green grapes
  • 2 cups stemmed kale
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 green apple, chopped
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Puree the grape juice, grapes, kale, bananas, apple, and salt in a blender until smooth.
  2. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer, pressing with a spatula to remove as much liquid as possible.
  3. Pour the mixture into 8 4-ounce ice-pop molds, dividing evenly. Insert ice-pop sticks and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours and up to 4 days.

Recipe Source: https://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/browse-all-recipes/grape-green-apple-kale-pops

If you’re interested in adding additional healthy treat recipes to your recipe box, we suggest that you check out the Positive Health Wellness website.  This website contains tons of delicious recipes and gives great advice on how to live a healthier lifestyle.

 Do you have a favorite homemade popsicle recipe?

Share it with us in the comments below!

3 Delicious Picnic Recipes for a Great Memorial Day Picnic

Every Memorial Day, we celebrate the courageous men and women who have died serving our country. If you’re a retired or active member of any of our armed forces, we thank you for your service!

On this special holiday, many people get their friends and families together and host a delicious picnic or BBQ. And while traditional burgers, potato salad, and watermelon slices are always good picnic staples, we thought you might like a few new ideas for your picnic menu this year.

If you’re hosting—or attending—a Memorial Day picnic, we recommend adding the following recipes to your menu to mix things up. We hope you love them!

Crisp Cucumber Salad

If you’re attending a picnic feast, chances are someone is already bringing your standard potato or green leaf salad. In an effort to not double up on the same menu item, we recommend giving this recipe for a crisp cucumber salad a try.

Not only is this a unique salad option, but it’s a cool and refreshing menu option for a hot day.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cucumbers, thinly sliced
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 small red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

1. In a medium bowl, combine cucumbers, scallions, and red pepper.

2. In a small bowl, combine remaining ingredients; pour over cucumber mixture.

3. Cover and chill at least 2 hours before tossing and serving.

Recipe Source: https://www.mrfood.com/Deli-Salad/Crisp-Cucumber-Salad

Shrimp Burgers

A burger is a classic summertime picnic staple. Yet, as tasty as they are, you’re bound to get bored of the traditional ground beef burger—especially if you cook out a lot or are attending more than one picnic over the weekend.

This year, impress your seafood-loving friends with a new twist on a classic menu item and make them a shrimp burger.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound peeled and deveined medium shrimp
  • 1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup canola oil

Old Bay Mayo Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning

Directions:

1. Coarsely chop half of the shrimp.

2. Put the remaining shrimp in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Then, combine both shrimp in a large bowl with the breadcrumbs, lemon juice, salt, garlic powder, pepper, scallions, and egg, and mix.

3. Refrigerate for 10 minutes, and then form into 4 patties. Refrigerate 10 more minutes.

4. Heat the oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the burgers, about 3 minutes per side.

5. Make the mayo by combining the mayonnaise and Old Bay to taste in a small bowl.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/katie-lee/shrimp-burgers-with-old-bay-mayo

Lime Margarita Bars

No picnic is complete without a tasty dessert.

These lime margarita bars are sweet, tangy, and salty and will be sure to please any palate. And don’t worry, despite the name, there is absolutely no alcohol in this dessert so they are 100% kid friendly!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups finely crushed pretzels
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) butter, melted
  • 2 (14-ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
  • 4 teaspoons grated lime peel

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.

2. In a medium bowl, combine pretzels, sugar, and butter. Press firmly into bottom of prepared baking dish.

3. Bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until crust is firm; remove from oven and cool slightly, leaving oven on.

4. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Pour into cooled crust.

5. Bake 25 to 30 additional minutes, or until center is firm. Cool completely on a wire rack. Cut into bars and serve, or refrigerate until ready to serve.

Recipe source: https://www.mrfood.com/Bar-Cookies/Lime-Margarita-Bars-1550

What’s your favorite picnic recipe? Share it in the comments below!

3 Decadent Dessert Recipes for a Treat Yourself Day

Every day people go to work, run a business, care of their children, take care of their pets, volunteer, and do many other tiring jobs.

It’s possible you do at least one, or even more, of the things we just mentioned above.

The bottom line is that we know you work hard every day to make ends meet, care for your family, and help those in need. And most of the time, you probably even do it without getting one “thank-you” in return.

Well, we believe it’s time to thank yourself. And one of the best ways to do that is to set aside a time to indulge in a decadent “treat yourself” dessert.

We, at The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction, love to indulge in a sweet treat from time to time ourselves. So, we thought we’d share 3 delicious recipes that we think you’ll enjoy.

Ready for a much-needed treat yourself day? Give one of the following recipes a try!

Chocolate Lava Cake Recipe

There’s nothing more decadent than a warm, gooey piece of cake filled with rich, molten chocolate lava. If you’re a chocolate lover, this recipe is for you.

The best part, it’s super simple to make. Check it out…

Ingredients:

  • Baking spray, for spraying custard cups
  • 1 stick butter
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 ounces semisweet chocolate
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Vanilla ice cream, for serving

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Spray four custard cups with baking spray and place on a baking sheet.

2. Microwave the butter, bittersweet chocolate and semisweet chocolate in a large bowl on high until the butter is melted, about 1 minute. Whisk until the chocolate is also melted. Stir in the sugar until well blended. Whisk in the eggs and egg yolks, then add the vanilla. Stir in the flour. Divide the mixture among the custard cups.

3. Bake until the sides are firm and the centers are soft, about 13 minutes. Let stand 1 minute. Invert on individual plates while warm and serve with vanilla ice cream.

Recipe Source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/chocolate-lava-cakes

Strawberry Shortcake Recipe

If you prefer a dessert made from fresh, sweet, and juicy berries, you’re going to want to give this strawberry shortcake recipe a try.

This light, yet decadent dessert, topped with a sweet homemade whipped cream, is so easy to make even a novice chef can do it. Give it a try.

Ingredients:

  • 3 pints fresh strawberries
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup shortening
  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 cups whipped heavy cream

Directions:

1. Slice the strawberries and toss them with 1/2 cup of white sugar. Set aside.

2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Grease and flour one 8-inch round cake pan.

3. In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, 2 tablespoons white sugar and the salt. With a pastry blender, cut in the shortening until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Make a well in the center and add the beaten egg and milk. Stir until just combined.

4. Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Bake at 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool partially in pan on wire rack.

5. Slice partially cooled cake in half, making two layers. Place half of the strawberries on one layer and top with the other layer. Top with remaining strawberries and cover with the whipped cream.

Recipe Source: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/8201/strawberry-shortcake/

Vanilla Bean Mousse Recipe

Vanilla lovers, rejoice!

This 4-ingredient recipe is simple and delicious, and leaves you wanting to come back for seconds. And we say, go ahead and grab that extra serving—today is a day to indulge, right? The next time you have a vanilla craving, whip this recipe up…

Ingredients:

  • One vanilla bean, seeds scraped from the pod
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup heavy cream

Directions:

1. Whip heavy cream with vanilla bean seeds and 1/3 cup sugar until soft peaks form (err on the side of slightly overwhipped). Set aside.

2. In a medium mixing bowl, beat egg whites until foamy. Add 1/3 cup sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.

3. Fold together the whipped cream mixture and the egg mixture (I folded the eggs into the whipped cream).

4. Gently pour into individual serving dishes and refrigerate at least six hours, or overnight.

5. Serve!

Recipe Source: http://www.sugarlaws.com/vanilla-bean-mousse

Do you have a favorite decadent dessert recipe? Share it with us in the comments below!