Friday, February 27, 2015

Breakfast Quinoa with Blueberries, Strawberries and Chocolate Chips

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Quinoa is a great alternative to oatmeal for breakfast since it's packed with protein. Whenever I cook with it, I make sure to cook some extra and leave it in the refrigerator for recipes like these. You can use it as a substitute for rice in most recipes, so it always comes in handy.
Whenever I want a quick and satisfying breakfast, I heat up some leftover quinoa and make myself a delicious and hearty breakfast. Bradley loves this breakfast as well, and we enjoy sharing it with each other (that is...if he leaves me any). Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

Makes 2 servings
  • 2 cups milk, warmed
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1/4 cup strawberries, chopped
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/4 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tbsp. agave
In a large bowl, whisk together milk, cinnamon and vanilla.

Scoop the hot quinoa evenly into two serving bowls. Drizzle milk mixture evenly over top of quinoa.

Top with blueberries, strawberries, almonds, chocolate chips and a drizzle of agave. 

Source: SK Original

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Homemade Frosted Cinnamon Brown Sugar Pop Tarts

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When I was in high school (don't you dare ask me how long ago that was), my best friend's favorite things to get from the vending machine was cinnamon brown sugar pop tarts. I think she would get them When I wanted to treat myself I would follow her lead and get them as well, and they were beyond phenomenal every time. The cinnamon brown sugar combination inside soft pastry was the best pick-me-up during the treacherous school day.
I wanted to do something special for Chris' birthday last week, and breakfast in bed was at the top of my list. Instead of bringing him pancakes or something traditional, I chose to make him something unique: homemade cinnamon brown sugar pop tarts. They were always a fun and delicious treat for me, and I wanted that for him as well! I can say they easily lived up to my expectations and more; they might have even exceeded the boxed version!
Although a little time consuming, using store-bought pie dough cut back on some preparation so I could get these delicious little pastries cooking in no time. Chris was very surprised and loved his birthday breakfast in bed. He ate them for the next few mornings as well, but I don't think he was complaining one bit :) I can't wait to try these again with a Nutella filling. YUM. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe


  • 1 box (2 count) 9-inch refrigerated pie crust
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp. milk
  • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar , sifted
  • 1 tbsp. milk, plus more as needed
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
For the pastry: Remove pie crust from packaging. Roll out one of the crusts on a floured work surface. Roll it into a rectangle (as best you can) about 1/8 inch thick and 9x12 inches in size. Trim the sides as needed. Cut each piece of dough into thirds and each third into thirds again. You will end up with 9 rectangles, each measuring 3×4 inches. Continue with the second pie crust. 

Place 9 rectangles onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. The pop-tarts will not spread in the oven much, so you may place them relatively near one another. Keep the remaining 9 rectangles in the fridge for the time being. 

For the filling: Mix the brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour together in a small bowl. Set aside. Whisk the egg and milk together in a small bowl until combined to make egg wash. 

Brush egg wash over the entire surface of each rectangle on the baking sheet. These will be the bottoms of your pop-tarts and the egg wash will help glue the lid on. Place a heaping tablespoon of the prepared brown sugar filling into the center of each rectangle, spread it around, leaving around 1/4 inch of space on the edges. 

Remove the remaining 9 rectangles from the refrigerator. Brush the second set of rectangles with egg wash, then place each rectangle on top of the filling-topped rectangles - egg wash side down. Use your fingertips to press firmly around the pocket of filling, sealing the dough well on all sides. Reserve remaining egg wash.

Use a toothpick to poke 8 holes in the tops of each filled pastry to allow the steam to escape. Seal the edges by crimping with a fork, to prevent the sides from opening as the pop-tarts bake. 

Refrigerate the filled pop-tarts uncovered for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Once unbaked pop-tarts have chilled for 15 minutes, remove from the refrigerator and brush the tops with the remaining egg wash. Bake for about 22-28 minutes or until they’re golden brown, rotating the pan halfway through baking. Let the baked pop-tarts cool on the pan for about 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before glazing.

Make the glaze: Whisk all of the glaze ingredients together in a medium bowl until it reaches a spreading consistency. You want a thick glaze, but not too thick that it is hard to spread. Add another teaspoon or two of milk if needed. Use a spoon or knife to glaze each pop-tart. The glaze will slightly harden in about an hour.

Store pop-tarts in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days or in the refrigerator for 6 days. To reheat, bake in a 350 degree F oven for 10 minutes. Baked pop-tarts freeze up to 3 months. Thaw and reheat as directed.

Source: Adapted from Sally's Baking Addiction

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

{Tiny Tot Tuesdays} Mini Egg, Ham and Cheese Muffins

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Bradley is a big fan of having eggs in the morning, but it's not always easy nor convenient to whip up a batch of eggs for him (especially if we're in a rush). Therefore, I made a big batch of these delicious and easy egg, ham and cheese muffins to keep in the freezer at all times. When we're in a time crunch (or if I just want to get him something quick) all I have to do is zap a few of these in the microwave for 30 seconds. Then Bradley has a delicious, warm breakfast ready in no time. He loves these and easily eats 3-4 at a time! Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

Makes 24 mini muffins
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 tbsp. whole milk
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 cup deli ham, diced
  • 1/4 tsp. seasoned salt
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray two mini muffin pans with cooking spray and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs and milk together. Add cheese, ham, salt and pepper and stir to combine. 

Pour mixture into prepared muffin tins, almost all the way to the top. Bake in preheated oven for 8-10 minutes or until muffins are set.

Serve immediately. If saving for later, keep in the refrigerator for 2 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. To defrost, put muffins on a microwave-safe dish and microwave for 30 seconds.

Source: SK Original

Monday, February 23, 2015

Slow Cooker Piggies aka Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Gluten-Free)

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When Chris was out of town for work, Bradley and I decided to stay at my parents' house for a night. Not only was a snow storm looming, but Bradley was under the weather and I didn't want to be trapped in my house all alone with a sick baby. So we went to my parents' house and I got to spend some quality time with my mom. During one of Bradley's naps, I asked to make these Piggies that my mom has been making for years. It was her mom's recipe and I just needed to know how to make them.
Piggies are very simple to make; they're just a little time consuming. But with two people working on the cabbage rolls, we got the meal prepared in no time! A simple combination of pork and beef is tucked and rolled into cabbage leaves and then you slow cook them with a simple tomato sauce. These are the ultimate comfort food to me since they remind me of my childhood. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe


  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can sauerkraut
  • 1 head cabbage, outer damaged layers removed
  • 1 tbsp. butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 1 cup long grain rice (NOT cooked)
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce

Line the bottom of a crockpot with sauerkraut and set aside.

Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Add cabbage and boil for 5 minutes. Remove cabbage from pot and allow to cool slightly. Reserve water.

Meanwhile, melt butter in a small pan. Add onions and saute until soft, about 5-7 minutes. 

Combine cooked onions, beef, pork, rice and garlic powder in a large bowl. 

Take cabbage and separate leaves. Use a small knife to remove the tough rib from the center of each leaf.

Take about 1 tablespoon of the meat mixture and place in the center of each leaf. Fold like an envelope and roll up tightly. If the leaf is very large, cut it in half before filling. Continue with the remaining cabbage leaves. If you have extra cabbage leaves, you can shred them and throw into the bottom of the crockpot with the sauerkraut.

Place stuffed cabbage rolls very close together in the bottom of the prepared crockpot (you can lay them on top of one another). Cover with tomato sauce and 2 cups of the reserved cabbage water.

Put the lid on the crockpot and cook on HIGH for 1 hour or until rice is tender (alternatively, you can cook the piggies in a large pot or dutch oven at 350 degrees F for 1 hour).

Source: My Mom

Friday, February 20, 2015

Mediterranean Couscous Salad

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Chris, Bradley and I often go to a Great American Restaurant for dinner when I don't feel like cooking, and one of their new "healthy" dinner options includes a couscous side dish. I don't think I've ever had couscous before, but this particular side dish made me obsessed with the stuff. The rest of the meal is just okay, but I specifically order it now JUST for the couscous. It has onions, tomatoes, cheese and raisins in it. Raisins! It seemed so weird to me, but it was a very welcome sweet contrast to the rest of the ingredients.
Since couscous is now one of my favorite things (and I also researched it and found out how easy--and QUICK--it is to make) I was eager to create a recipe using it. I went with flavors I already know and love just to play it safe: tomatoes, Kalamata olives, garbanzo beans and feta round out this Mediterranean-style dish. I opted to throw some raisins in there as well to add a little sweetness, and I absolutely loved the contrast (feel free to leave them out if you're iffy about them). This is a dish that can be prepared in under 10 minutes and can be served hot or cold. I don't know about you, but versatile dishes are some of my favorite dishes. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 extra large chicken bouillon cube
  • 1 1/2 cups dry couscous
  • 1 cup tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 Kalamata olives, chopped
  • 1/2 cup scallions, diced
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup feta, crumbled
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • Dash of salt
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
In a medium saucepan, add the water and bouillon cube. Bring to a boil and stir until bouillon cube is dissolved. Stir in couscous and remove from heat. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl combine the tomato, olives, scallions, raisins, garbanzo beans, feta, olive oil, lemon juice, pepper, a dash of salt (use a small amount since the olives are already salty) and cayenne pepper.

Once couscous is done, remove cover and fluff with a fork. Add couscous to tomato mixture and lightly stir to combine. Serve immediately, at room temperature or chill in the refrigerator until ready to eat.

Source: SK Original

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Creamy Cheesy Pasta with Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Mushrooms

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Yes, we're trying to eat healthy. But it's also important to have indulgences once in a while! And to us, those indulgences are usually in the form of pasta. With cheese. And half-and-half. But there were vegetables, so that counts for something, right?
This was a very rich and creamy pasta dish. Plus it was very easy to make. You can really put any type of vegetable in this dish and it will turn out amazing, but I love the taste of sun-dried tomatoes so I opted for those. I also had some mushrooms on hand, so in they went. The chicken makes this meal very filling, so you don't have to eat too much of it...making it a little healthier. I think. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe


  • 10 oz. penne pasta
  • 1/2 cup reserved pasta water
  • 1 (7 oz.) jar sun-dried tomatoes in oil
  • 1 (8 oz.) package sliced mushrooms
  • 3 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 tsp. seasoned salt
  • 1 cup fat-free half and half
  • 1/2 tbsp. dried basil
  • 1/2 tbsp. dried Italian seasoning
  • 1 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan-Romano blend cheese, shredded
Cook penne according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup water and then drain pasta. Set aside.

Drain sun-dried tomatoes over a bowl to reserve liquid. Cut tomatoes into thin strips.

Add 1.5 tbsp. reserved sun-dried tomato oil to a pan over medium heat. Add mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes and garlic and cook for 5 minutes or until mushrooms are tender. Remove mixture from pan and reserve in a bowl.

Sprinkle both sides of chicken with seasoned salt. Add 2 more tablespoons reserved sun-dried tomato oil to pan. Add seasoned chicken and cook for 5-7 minutes or until done. Remove chicken from pan and place on a plate. Drain fat/oil from the pan.

Add cooked sun-dried tomato/mushroom mixture and half and half to pan. Add basil and Italian seasoning. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and add cheeses. Continuously stir and immediately add 1/2 cup reserved pasta water. Stir until cheese is melted and mixture is combined.

Add chicken and pasta to the pan and stir to coat. Serve immediately.

Source: SK Original

Monday, February 16, 2015

Bananas Foster Coffee Cake

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Tomorrow is Fat Tuesday! And also my AMAZING husband's 30th birthday!! So happy birthday to the best husband, father, friend and partner a girl could ask for. I couldn't imagine going through this crazy life with anyone but you :)
In honor of Mardi Gras, I whipped up this delicious bananas foster cake. Since there is "coffee" in the title, it's a cake that's more than suitable to eat for breakfast, too. I can highly bet you'll want to eat this for breakfast...and lunch...and dinner. It's the glorious combination of bananas foster and your favorite breakfast cake topped with a sweet, crumby topping. It's super moist and full of amazing flavors; I personally couldn't stop eating it. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe


For the cake:

  • 6 tbsp. unsalted butter, divided
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 6 tbsp. dark rum
  • 3 ripe bananas, sliced into 1 1/2-inch chunks (about 2 cups)
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups cake flour*
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
For the streusel:
  • 7 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
Position a rack to the center of the oven and preheat it to 350 degrees. Spray an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

In a large skillet, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter over medium-high heat. Add the dark brown sugar and stir to combine. Add the rum and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring often, until slightly thickened. Add the banana chunks and cook for 3 minutes more, gently stirring and coating the bananas with the caramel as they cook. When the bananas are very tender, mash a few times with a potato masher just to break down the banana into bits–don’t overmash them into a paste. Scrape the caramelized banana mixture into a medium heatproof bowl. Stir in the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter until melted. Stir in the vanilla. Let the mixture cool until its just warm to the touch. Quickly whisk in the eggs.

Sift the cake flour, baking powder and salt together into a large bowl. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and fold just until combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.

To make the streusel, combine the flour, sugar and butter in a small bowl. Use your fingertips or a fork to blend the ingredients into a pebbly mixture (be careful not to overwork the butter if you’re using your fingers, as to not melt the butter with the heat of your hands). Sprinkle the streusel evenly over the batter.

Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before cutting and serving.

*If you don't have cake flour on hand, measure two cups of all-purpose flour into a bowl. Remove two tablespoons of the flour and add two tablespoons cornstarch. Sift through a sifter and you have cake flour.

Source: Shauna Server

Friday, February 13, 2015

Fresh Strawberry Chocolate Chip Cake Mix Cookies

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Happy Valentine's Day Eve! Boy, have I got an awesome recipe for you to make your loved ones for tomorrow. And even better news? The base of the recipe comes from a box, so it doesn't even make too much of a mess! I love the texture of cake-like cookies because they're deliciously soft and melt in your mouth. They really are so, so good.
I used fresh strawberries in this recipe, and I really think that extra step added a lot of flavor. Sure, you can use strawberry cake mix if you really want to, but why exclude fresh, sweet strawberries if you don't have to? Strawberries mixed with chocolate are a no-brainer, so obviously these cookies are over-the-top good. They're a pale shade of pink (so feel free to add a little red food coloring if you really want the pink to pop) and a sweet treat to give the one you love. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

  • 1 cup very ripe strawberries, sliced
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 box (18.25 oz) vanilla cake mix
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Red food coloring
  • 1 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Extra chocolate chips, for topping (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.

Put strawberries in a bowl and top with sugar. Stir to combine. Allow to sit for 30 minutes. Use a fork to mash the strawberries into large chunks (if your strawberries aren't that ripe, you might need to add them to a blender or food processor and blend slightly, leaving chunks). Set aside.

In a large bowl, mix together the cake mix and baking powder. Add the reserved strawberries, eggs, oil and vanilla and stir to combine. Add a few drops of red food coloring to make a light pink color, if desired, and stir to combine. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Drop 2 tbsp. of dough shaped into a ball on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough, leaving about 2 inches in between cookies.

Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 2 minutes on the baking sheet. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to one week.

Source: SK Original

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Stuffed Eggplant (Gluten-Free)

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One of my friends moved all the way to Seattle, so luckily I was her recipient of perishable goods while she was packing up her home and office. She belonged to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) where she received weekly baskets of produce from a local farmer. Since she was unable to use all the produce she received in her last basket before she left, she graciously gave me a big batch of assorted vegetables since she knows I love to cook. When she told me an eggplant was included, I immediately started imagining all the things I could make with it.
This is a perfect weeknight dinner to share with someone. You get your share of meat, vegetables and cheese all wrapped up into one delicious dish. And if you each take a half, it's more than filling. I really loved this recipe and enjoyed the mix of flavors. The sausage adds some kick, the seasonings are perfect compliments to the vegetables, while the ooey gooey cheese melts and pulls the dish together. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

  • 1 large eggplant
  • 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 lb. ground beef
  • 2 links mild Italian sausage, removed from casing
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 1/2 red pepper, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tbsp. dried parsley
  • 1/2 tbsp. dried basil
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup part-skim Ricotta cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups reduced-fat Mozzarella cheese, shredded, divided
  • 1/2 cup tomato, seeded and diced
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.

Cut the eggplant in half and scoop out the center, leaving enough meat inside the skin so that it holds its shape when baked. Chop 1 cup of the scooped out part and set aside. Evenly slice a very small strip of the skin (about 2 inches long) off the bottom of each eggplant half so the eggplant lays flat. 

Meanwhile, in a medium saute pan heat 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium heat. Season the beef with salt and pepper. Add the seasoned ground beef and the sausage to the pan and saute until browned. Drain.

In the same pan over medium heat, add the remaining 2 tbsp. olive oil and saute the onions, peppers, reserved 1 cup chopped eggplant and garlic until vegetables are tender. 

In a large bowl mix together the cooked vegetables, cooked meat, parsley, basil, Parmesan, Ricotta, 1 cup Mozzarella and the tomatoes.

Evenly fill the scooped-out eggplant halves with the meat mixture. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese. 

Place on prepared baking sheet and cook for 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Source: SK Original

Monday, February 9, 2015

ABC Vegetable Soup

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I hate wintertime. Germs are everrrryyyywhere. And because of that, my entire family has been sick the past couple weeks. My baby had a cold that lingered forever. He was congested, lethargic, wouldn't eat, wouldn't play, was fussy, always wanted to sleep. So not like him! But thankfully he has fully recovered. But then, lo and behold, as soon as he got better Chris and I got sick! I got a nasty sinus infection and strep throat, while Chris got a upper respiratory infection. It was absolutely no fun, but thankfully my parents swooped in and took Bradley to stay at their house so he wouldn't catch our germs!
Before I was down for the count, I whipped up a big batch of this tasty vegetable soup for all of us. It's packed with tons of essential vitamins; just what we needed when feeling under the weather. And it's a great way to get your child to eat tons of vegetables! Bradley hates carrots, but I was even able to sneak some on a few of his spoonfuls. This soup was extremely hearty and warmed our insides. When we were younger my mom always used to top our vegetable soup with a slice of yellow American cheese, so that's what I did to mine. It makes the soup creamy and extra delicious--I suggest you give it a try :) Enjoy!

Printable Recipe


  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup celery, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups white or gold potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup baby carrots, sliced
  • 1/2 cup green beans, fresh, frozen or canned, drained and rinsed
  • 2 (14 oz.) cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup Italian seasoned tomato sauce
  • 48 oz. vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup uncooked alphabet pasta
  • 1/2 cup corn, frozen or canned, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup peas, frozen or canned, drained and rinsed
Heat the oil in a large pot. Sauté the onion, celery and potatoes for 4 minutes.

Add the carrots and green beans and stir, allowing to cook for an additional 5 minutes. Mix in the tomatoes, tomato sauce, broth, kidney beans and bay leaf. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium low and cook for 10 minutes.

Bring the heat back to a boil. Add the pasta and cook for 5 minutes. Add the corn and peas and cook for an additional 5–6 minutes or until pasta is tender. Discard bay leaf and serve.

Source: Adapted from Giant Food

Friday, February 6, 2015

Loaded Baked Potato Dip (Gluten-Free)

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I first had this dip at my friend's housewarming party, and I couldn't wait for an occasion to make it on my own. Chris and I literally stood around this dip the whole party and ate half of it. We probably would have eaten the whole thing, except we had Bradley with us and had to leave early. Oh, and we didn't really think it was "polite" to eat the whole thing. I totally would have if it was socially acceptable, though.
This dip doesn't contain any potatoes, but it takes the toppings that make a Loaded Baked Potato a Loaded Baked Potato and throws them into one concoction in the form of a dip. Sour cream, cheese, scallions and bacon are all you need to make the most delicious dip ever. This literally comes together in five minutes and everyone will rave over it. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

  • 1 (2.1-oz.) package real bacon crumbles
  • 1 (16-oz.) container sour cream
  • 2 cups (8 oz.) sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/3 cup fresh scallions, sliced thin
  • 2 tsp. hot sauce (optional)
  • Garnishes: extra bacon crumbles, scallions and cheese
  • Wavy potato chips, for serving
Stir together bacon crumbles, sour cream, cheese, scallions and hot sauce (if using).

Cover and chill 1 to 24 hours before serving. Garnish, if desired. 

Serve with chips. Store leftovers in refrigerator up to 7 days.

Source: Adapted from My Recipes

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Lighter Chicken Cutlets with Spinach, Roasted Red Peppers and Feta (Gluten-Free)

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My little brother and his fiancé are getting married in less than four months, and I'm so honored to be a part of their wedding party. I had to get a super small size for my bridesmaid dress, so I'm determined to (and I kind of have to) not gain any weight and get in shape before their big day. After all--pictures last a lifetime!
So in an effort to not pack on the pounds, I've been trying to come up with more low-carb and healthy dinners. Chris suggested making a meal with spinach since I rarely cook with the stuff, and my immediate instinct was to mix it with two of my favorite things: roasted red peppers and Feta cheese. I made a delicious topping to spread on top of the chicken to create a protein-packed meal that we all loved. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe


For chicken cutlets:

  • 1-1 1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Canola oil
For topping:
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup roasted red peppers, roughly chopped
  • 1 (16 oz.) package frozen chopped spinach (thawed and juice squeezed out)
  • Dash of nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 cup Feta cheese, crumbled
Pound cutlets until 1/4 inch thick. Sprinkle both sides with a small amount of salt, pepper and garlic powder.

Heat 1 tbsp. oil over medium-low heat. Add chicken in an even layer and cook breasts on each side until brown and cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Place cooked chicken breasts on a baking sheet and and keep warm in a 200 degree F oven. Continue until all the chicken is cooked, adding more oil as needed.

Meanwhile, prepare the topping. Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions, garlic and red peppers and sauté about 1 minute. Add spinach, nutmeg, salt and pepper and cook another minute or until heated through. Remove from heat. Stir in the Feta until combined.

Spread 2 tbsp. of the topping mixture over each chicken breast. Serve immediately.

Source: SK Original

Monday, February 2, 2015

Stuffed Pepper Soup (Gluten-Free)

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Having a big bowl of steaming hot soup on a cold winter evening is the bees knees. It warms your insides, doesn't make you feel overly stuffed or sluggish, and is usually pretty simple to make at home. 
We love my Stuffed Peppers, so this recipe was a take on that. I added canned tomatoes and chicken broth to the base of the recipe, and the outcome was a hearty soup version of one of our favorite low-calorie (and gluten-free!) meals. The boys and I gobbled this up. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 cup green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 (15 oz.) can tomato sauce
  • 2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp. oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • Dash of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Cook rice according to package directions. Set aside.

Meanwhile, add beef to a large pot. Cook until browned and then drain off the fat. 

Return beef to pot and add peppers, onion, garlic, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, broth, Italian seasoning, oregano, Worcestershire, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Stir to combine and bring to a boil.

Once boiling, reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for 40 minutes. Scoop soup into a bowl and top with 1/2 cup cooked rice.

Source: SK Original