Sweet Coffee Biscuit Recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #BrewToPerfection #MrCoffeeDay #CollectiveBias

The alarm clock screeches me awake at a time most unholy. I fumble around to get dressed and going for the day while I attempt to herd children simultaneously.

(WHY are they out in the backyard with the dog still in their jammies when we need to be walking out the door soon?)

During this foggy, draggy, here-comes-another-yawn stage I have one benediction I wish for myself and for all my fellow crazy-busy back-to-life people:

{{Psstt–it’s a printable! So in case you need a little smile each day or want to give one to your friend just click above and print out or save!}}

Because, Coffee. I would like to bear hug whoever first discovered the magic that is coffee. I fill up a full MUG (yes, mug) every morning. My coffee gets me through drop offs at two different schools and gearing back into my busy-crazy work from home and full-time mom and wife life.

During this time of year, the sweet liquid gold is more precious than ever, and it’s a great time to treat yourself to a new coffee pot! Also, August is National Coffee Month (it’s like they know us….) So really I think I’ve given you all the good reasons you need. Plus, I have some great news for you in that department:

Right now you can find demos for the Mr. Coffee® 12-cup Programmable Advanced Brew Coffee Maker. They’ll be passing these In-store coupons: Save $5 on all Mr. Coffee® Coffeemakers and Espresso Units over $29. Even if you can’t find the demo be sure to check the coffee aisle or an end cap because the coupon may be located there!

The programmable feature is a must for me! During those bleary eyed mornings walking out to an already brewed pot is like a hug.

They also come in this fun red color which matches our black, red, and white kitchen scheme *so* perfectly. To Celebrate National Coffee Month with Mr. Coffee® I decided that I would make a batch of my hubbies favorite recipe, and share it with you, too! It pairs so perfectly with a cup of freshly brewed coffee!

Sweet Coffee Biscuit Recipe

If you’ve never had a coffee biscuit before they’re a little hard to describe! They’re part moist and dense cookie, part flaky biscuit, and a whole lot of perfect for pairing with a hot beverage. They’re sweet, but not overly sweet which is why they’re my husband’s favorite. This recipe makes a BIG batch, but there’s no easy way to split it because….

This started out as a “dash of this and a pinch of that recipe” passed down from my hubby’s grandma. His mom got it into the form you see above, which wasn’t much better. Never fear, though, I worked out the kinks and will walk you through with actual measurements and cook times! Since it does make so many it’s a great recipe to bring to places and share with friends. Another option that works great is to freeze half the dough to make later.

The first step is to preheat your oven to 450 degrees (no, not a typo, you want it that hot!)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups Sugar
  • 3 Eggs (beaten in advance)
  • 1 Cup Buttermilk
  • 1 Cup Shortening
  • 2 1/2 TSP Vanilla
  • 1 TSP Baking Powder
  • 1 TSP Baking Soda
  • 7 Cups of Flour (plus extra for dusting)

Add in and blend all ingredients together in order listed. Slowly add in flour one cup at a time and mix until a nice, firm dough has been created. (It’ll somewhat have the texture of cookie dough, but be a bit denser).

On a well-dusted surface roll out dough until a few inches thick. You don’t want them cookie thickness, you want more of biscuit thickness. (I learned this the hard way the first few times I attempted these.) The traditional way is to cut them out in circles so they look more like biscuits. Personally, I like to have a little fun and use cookie cutters.

Place on a baking sheet. These don’t “run” at all, they just puff up. So you can place them fairly close together with no worries. Bake at 450 for 6-8 minutes adjusting for how your personal oven cooks and the sizes you cut out. These stars and the traditional circles were done at 6 minutes, the hearts took closer to 8.

The Coffee Biscuits are done cooking once they puff up like this and just the edges are starting to turn brown. Do not wait for them to turn completely golden or they’ll be over cooked. You want this pretty white coloring!

Allow to cool and serve with a fresh cup of coffee brewed in your Mr. Coffee® Coffee Maker!

Here’s a printable recipe to make life easy for you:

Sweet Coffee Biscuit Recipe
Cook time:
Total time:
Slightly sweet these Coffee Biscuits are part cookie, part biscuit and a lot of delicious paired with a fresh cup of coffee!
Ingredients
  • Ingredients:
  • 2 cups Sugar
  • 3 Eggs (beaten in advance)
  • 1 Cup Buttermilk
  • 1 Cup Shortening
  • 2 1/2 TSP Vanilla
  • 1 TSP Baking Powder
  • 1 TSP Baking Soda
  • 7 Cups of Flour (plus extra for dusting)
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees
  2. Add in and blend all ingredients together in order listed.
  3. Slowly add in flour one cup at a time and mix until a nice, firm dough has been created
  4. On a well-dusted surface roll out dough until a few inches thick
  5. Cut into circles with a glass or into shapes with a cookie cutter
  6. Bake on a Cookie Sheet for 6-8 minutes until puffed up and sides are turning slightly brown

 

Or Pin It To Save For Later!

DAnd dDon’t forget to check out your local Walmart for the in-store coupon for the Mr. Coffee® 12-cup Programmable Advanced Brew Coffee Maker!

How To Keep Your Produce Fresh & Very Berry Salad Recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SeeHowFreshWorks #CollectiveBias

Summer is in full swing and our family is doing our most to make the most of it and cross off items on our Summer Bucket List! My very favorite summer tradition since we moved to Texas is picking Blueberries each year. I remember growing up reading berry-picking stories and I always dreamed of getting to do it for myself. It is just as much fun as I always dreamed and the fresh berries are simply amazing. I’m not even a huge blueberry fan, but I can eat these by the bowlful.

This year we tried out a new farm that’s closer to our new home. It was a great experience, but they sell theirs by the gallon.  Which means that we ended up with a whoooole lot of blueberries.

Another thing I learned quickly after moving to Texas is that fresh produce goes bad, sooo quickly. I rinsed and left some strawberries out and overnight from the heat and humidity they’d molded by the next day.

So when I found out about the new Rubbermaid® FreshWorks™ Produce Saver I knew that I needed it in my life in every size! Their Patented FreshVent™ Technology keeps produce fresher, longer. It does this by allowing excess CO2 to escape, delaying produce spoilage.

Then the Crisp Tray™ elevates produce away from moisture and promotes proper airflow to help prevent spoilage. My favorite part? Lid, container, and tray are dishwasher safe and BPA free. My least favorite chore is hand washing dishes so this is an absolute must for any item I’ll be using frequently. (Get $2 cash back on FreshWorksTM Now From Ibotta, offer valid while supplies last)

I’ve been making All-Things-Blueberry to use up that huge amount we picked, and as much as I love dessert I wanted to opt for something a little less processed sugary for the weekend. When I was at Kroger picking up my Rubbermaid FreshWorks Produce Savers from the food storage aisle I looked around for inspiration. This is when I discovered that they had some drool worthy Raspberries, Blackberries, and Strawberries in the produce section. They made the choice to whip up a Berry Salad a no-brainier!

I also picked up a big bunch of Kale to make Kale chips. This fits perfectly in the FreshWorks Large container which is designed for heads of lettuce or an entire bag of grapes. Me and the kids looove Kale Chips. If you’ve never made them before they are super easy, super delicious, and so much better than any packaged form of chips!

The Rubbermaid® FreshWorks™  by putting the produce into it whole, without washing it first. It basically replaces the container from the store to keep it fresh while you’re waiting to make your recipe or eat it! If you’d like to learn more about this cool new product check out the Rubbermaid® FreshWorks™  website!

Now that you’ve got everything stored freshly away it’s time for the recipe!

Very Berry Salad Recipe

Ingredients:

Use all fresh produce, if it’s a little early or late in the season for any berry try the organic section for better-looking options. If you have a U-Pick place anywhere close use those berries instead and just put them in equal amounts to all your other berries.

  • 1 Package Blackberries
  • 1 Package Raspberries
  • 1 Package Blueberries
  • 1 Package Strawberries
  • 1 Lime
  • 1/4 -1/2 Cup Orange Juice (fresh squeezed or from a container)

First, cut off tops and slice up strawberries.

Next, rinse and put in all the berries together in large bowl.

Now you’ll cut the lime in half and juice both halves over berry blend.

Pour Orange Juice over berries and stir together gently till well blended. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.

This salad couldn’t be more simple but it’s absolutely delicious! The kids and I gobbled it all up! It’s so easy you probably don’t even need a printable recipe to remember–but just in case here you go!

Very Berry Salad Recipe
Recipe Type: Salad
Author: Nicole Elliott
Prep time:
Total time:
This Very Berry Salad is super simple but bursting with delicious, fresh summer flavor. Use Rubbermaid FreshWorks to keep produce fresh until needed.
Ingredients
  • 1 Package Blackberries
  • 1 Package Raspberries
  • 1 Package Blueberries
  • 1 Package Strawberries
  • 1 Lime
  • 1/4 -1/2 Cup Orange Juice (fresh squeezed or from a container)
Instructions
  1. Cut off tops and slice up strawberries.
  2. Rinse and put in all the berries together in large bowl.
  3. Cut lime in half and juice both halves over berry blend.
  4. Pour Orange Juice over berries and stir together till well blended. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.

Find more Rubbermaid® FreshWorks™ inspiration and learn about how the product works here

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Peanut Butter Brownie Sundae Recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SummerSundaes #CollectiveBias

School is out, the needle on the thermometer rises higher and higher, and the busy hustle of structured days gives way to sleeping in and relaxing.

There’s no denying it, summer is here! We absolutely love the freedom, the time together, and all the fun that summer brings along with it. To me, every day spent with people you love is a reason to celebrate.  I love creating special moments and fun little traditions that will turn into memories for our family.

One of my favorite, easy and delicious ways to celebrate any time is Ice Cream Sundaes! Any day becomes special when you have this treat that everyone adores. To make the moment even more memorable, I decided to create a recipe that take this classic favorite and put a fun, new twist on it! For this recipe, I use the must-have standard ingredients of Smucker’s Hot Fudge Spoonable Ice Cream Topping and Reddi-Wip® original whipped topping. To create the twist I used the  New Blue Bunny® PB ‘N Cones™ to give the classic vanilla ice cream a fun flavor that paired perfectly with the Brownie Cups I created to serve the Ice Cream Sundaes in. Add all these together for perfectly portioned delights that will make your families eyes sparkle!

Of course, I headed to Walmart to get everything I needed to create these delicious treats.  Here’s what you’ll need to pick up there to recreate these perfectly paired Ice Cream Sundaes!

Peanut Butter Brownie Sundae Recipe

Ingredients:

Sundae Fun Day Tip: For a quick and easy celebration, prepare the Brownie Cups the day before so they have time to bake and cool completely! Then you can quickly and easily assemble your Ice Cream Sundaes and enjoy!

Your first step is to prepare the Brownie Mix according to the box. Then, spoon the batter into a muffin tin. You’ll want to bake for a shorter time than you would for an entire pan. These brownies called for 39 minutes for the smallest pan, so I set the timer for 30 minutes. You’ll know the brownies are done when the tops are firm.

Remove from heat and allow to cool for just a few minutes. Then use a press or the bottom of a small glass and push down the centers to create cups. Allow brownies to cool completely.

Once brownies have cooled completely you can remove them carefully from the pan and you have your perfect Brownie Cups!

How cool does the Blue Bunny® PB ‘N Cones™ look? I love the ribbons that run through it! All the new Blue Bunny treats give classic flavors a fun, unique twist, exactly what I was going for with this recipe. Can you believe that Blue Bunny® has been bringing delicious ice cream for over 80 years?! Use your ice cream scoop to create single, perfectly round scoops of ice cream and top the brownies.

Now it’s time for the Smucker’s Hot Fudge Spoonable Ice Cream Topping! Follow the instructions on the bottle to heat. For our Ice Cream Sundaes, I used a bag to drizzle the hot topping, but you can spoon it on as well!

The final step is the Reddi-Wip®! Create a beautiful and delicious dollop of it and serve immediately!

Here’s the printable recipe and don’t forget to pin this so you have it handy to refer back to!

Peanut Butter Brownie Sundae Recipe
Recipe Type: Dessert
Brownie Cups & Blue Bunny® PB ‘N Cones™ Ice Cream bring delicious twists to this classic favorite.
Ingredients
  • Blue Bunny® PB ‘N Cones™
  • Smucker’s Hot Fudge Spoonable Ice Cream Topping
  • Reddi-Wip® original whipped topping
  • Box Brownie Mix & Ingredients to make
Instructions
  1. Prepare the Brownie Mix according to the box & spoon batter into muffin pan.
  2. Cook Brownies at heat listed on box until tops are firm (approximately 10-15 minutes less than you would bake for a full pan)
  3. Allow Brownies to cool 1-3 minutes and press centers firmly down.
  4. Allow Brownies to cool completely before removing from pan.
  5. Using ice cream scoop to top Brownies with one scoop of Blue Bunny® PB ‘N Cones™
  6. Heat Smucker’s Hot Fudge Spoonable Ice Cream Topping according to jar & top ice cream
  7. Finish off by topping with dollop of Reddi-Wip® original whipped topping

Go Here For Even More Delicious Ice Cream Sundae Recipes!

6 Common Baking Mistakes You’re Making – And How to Fix Them Today

You can be confident in anything you do: makeup, go on a date or even cooking. Cooking up great meals saves you money (woohoo), and you’ll also be able to make foods you truly enjoy.

You’ll also skip out on those bad-for-you ingredients and preservatives that put you into a coma.

But there’s one area of cooking that’s really hard to be confident in even when following direct recipes: baking. A dash of this, a dash of that and a lot of kneading that’s supposed to lead to an amazing loaf of bread or batch of cookies can lead to confusion.

Why did my bread come out so dry?

Why do my cookies fall flat?

And a zillion other questions will run through your mind. Baking is an art, and a small mishap can ruin your plans. Before you dig your teeth into this Brownie Bites recipe (it’s so good), or make this to-die-for s’mores cookies, let’s discuss a few baking mistakes that can ruin your evening.

1. Don’t Skip Steps

There’s a reason butter is included in the early steps and needs to stay out (to hit room temperature). There’s a reason for ingredients being added in a certain order. Everything in the recipe has a reason, so make sure you follow every step precisely.

If you skip steps, you might be sabotaging your baking.

2. Check Your Oven Temperature

Great, you’re free style cookie baking. Your mouth is watering as you watch yet another episode of your favorite show on Netflix and everything’s going great. But as it turns out, your cookies are burnt on top or they’re still gooey in the middle.

I love a little softness in my cookie, but your problem may not be a lack of good time management.

Oven temperatures aren’t always precise (seriously). Imagine setting your oven to 350F and it’s really running at 330F. I’ve had this happen before, and it ruins everything you cook. A good way to counteract this temperature miscalculation is to use a separate thermometer to properly gauge your oven’s temperature.

This is a secret that bakers know all too well. If your food isn’t cooking properly, it might just be a temperature issue.

3. Cold Ingredients Are Meant to Be Cold, and Warm Ingredients Are Meant to be Warm

If you see the recipe mention “cold” or “room temperature” ingredients, make sure you follow the directions precisely. Seriously. There’s a reason for the ingredients needing to be room temperature or cold.

Chemical reactions can cause ingredients to mix differently when cold.

For example, cold butter doesn’t allow for the same fluffiness when baking as room temperature butter.

When recipes leave out the temperature of eggs, milk or butter, assume that room temperature is required.

4. You Make Multiple Batches of Cookies on the Same Baking Pan

If you have a tendency to bake a lot of cookies like me, it’s tempting to make one batch after another without using a new baking sheet. This sounds like a minor detail, but it’s not. If the baking sheet just came out of the oven, it’s too hot to be used for another batch of cookies.

You’ll end up with a subpar second batch of cookies as a result.

Instead, use another baking sheet or allow the sheet to cool all the way before using it again.

5. You’re Not Using the Right Equipment

Don’t place that cookie batter in a baking pan. Don’t use your electric oven to make bread when you could be using a bread maker. Use the equipment you have available to make your baking as effortless as possible.

A few quick tips to remember are:

  • 1/2″ lip baking sheets require longer baking
  • No-edge baking sheets make it easier to remove cookies
  • Pizza pans aren’t meant for baking cookies
  • Shiny aluminum pans absorb more heat

If you plan on baking often, make sure you’re using the right pans and utensils to get the job done right.

6. You Open the Oven Often and Never Preheat

Preheating the oven allows for an even temperature and even cooking. If you’re not preheating your oven, you need to start today. There’s also the OCD pattern of opening up the oven door every 2 minutes to check on your bread, cookies or whatever it is you’re cooking.

If you keep opening the oven door, you’re allowing all of the heat to escape – not great for temperature precision.

Also keep in mind that changing recipe ingredients to be healthier can actually ruin the recipe. Every recipe has a chemistry behind it, so substituting honey for sugar as a sweetener may not leave you with the desired results.

This is especially true when changing out ingredients in full-fat recipes.

If you plan on substituting ingredients, make sure you know what will happen chemically to avoid ruining your baking fun.

 

Bio: Joe Hughes, known by most as the Village Baker, is an expert in homestyle cooking techniques, with a primary interest in baking. He runs the very popular website, https://www.village-bakery.com, which provides the latest homestyle cooking news, techniques, tricks, and recipes. He can be reached at Joe@Village-Bakery.com.

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How To Help Your Kids Feel Special & Loved Each Day

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #2Good2Bear #CollectiveBias

I absolutely, positively, cannot believe it–but this precious little rolly-polly baby turns 9 today.

I know that whether your baby just turned 9 months, or 9 years, you’re already shaking your head and wondering where the time is disappearing to. As a fellow mommy, I’m right there with you. I’ve heard over and over again, that it just seems to go faster the older they get, too!

Now that both kids are in school all day loooong (from 8:40-3:20) I want to make sure that I’m making the most of our time together. Now, don’t get me wrong. As a social media & blogger gal I’m absolutely guilty of pounding away at my keyboard as the kids are trying to talk to me, or of scrolling through Instagram at the park. Days fly by and life just happens. I know that if I’m not deliberate and intentional it’s far too easy to let those precious, important moments be sacrificed on the altar of the urgent things flying around and at me every day.

Because of this, a few years ago I decided that I would give each of the kids a little slice of my total and undivided attention each day. It started out being called “Tickle Bugs” because when they were smaller they would beg and beg and BEG for me to tickle them. As they’re getting older the activities change, but the name and the time stay the same. I’ll start my watch and first give Tyler 10-15 minutes of undivided attention to do whatever he wants, then I do the same for Amber.

Every once in awhile I make this fun time a little sweeter by surprising them with a special treat! I recently just found out about the new TEDDY SOFT BAKED Filled Snacks. They are made with quality ingredients such as milk, eggs, and chocolate. Not only do they have the good stuff, they also have no high fructose corn syrup, no artificial flavors, and no artificial colors! Plus how cute are they in this adorable bear shape?! They inspired me to break out classics from my childhood–this rocking chair and bear are actually mine from when I was a little bitty girl!

Oh, and it probably goes without saying, but the kids absolutely LOVE them! You can pick them up in the Cookie & Cracker aisle of your local Walmart, or look for a special display. Also, there will be a special demo on 2/23 so keep your eyes out for that  as well.

Even better, you can earn cash back with the iBotta app! Have you tried that app out yet? It’s seriously awesome!! I finally got it recently and have already received more than $20 back! So amazing to get cash back on items I’m already buying each trip, anyways! It’s free, and simple to use–so definitely download it and check out this offer!

I actually got the idea to do concentrated play time with my kids after listening to a child psychologist at one of my mom’s groups a few years ago. She was talking about play therapy and how important and useful it was for her, and how as parents we can work it into our life to help our kids. Basically, it boiled down to exactly what I said above, setting a timer for just a short amount of time and giving your child your undivided attention to do whatever they want during that time.

Because you let your child direct the play, it will look totally specific to them. You might end up watching them perform a play, you might color a page for them, or you may end up as a superhero.

These days for us “tickle bugs” sometimes means playing with building bricks, sometimes it’s playing Tyler’s crazy elaborate game with beads, marbles, action figures and vehicles that he’s invented, sometimes it’s crawling around on the floor and being a mama tiger and they’re my baby. It’s a perfect way to let each of them know that they are special to me and that they are loved. It’s also great because it leads naturally to them opening up about whatever is going on in their little worlds. I’m hoping that this habit can shift into long “tickle bug talks” as they hurry into the tween and teen years. Keeping communication is so vital during every stage of parenting, and this is a beautiful, simple, and sweet way to make sure your kids know how loved and special they are to you.

Even just sharing a TEDDY SOFT BAKED Filled Snack and sitting and talking for a few minutes, about anything they want, will be such a beautiful break for you both. I feel like so often as parents we’re trying to guide and help and direct them. This is great and needed, but it can start to feel like it’s nothing but a continual stream of rules and directions, which is understandably exhausting for all of you! Give yourself this chance to reconnect and let your kids know how special and loved they are, no matter what the rest of the day has looked like!

How do you help your kids feel special & loved each day? Have you tried new TEDDY SOFT BAKED Filled Snacks yet? Leave me a comment and let me know–and don’t forget to download ibotta and use that rebate!

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Delicious & Easy Pizza Dip Recipes

This shop for delicious pizza and accompanying dip has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone #FreschettaFresh #CollectiveBias

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While December means so many wonderful and magical things, ever since I started working from home it took on a whole different meaning for me. If you work in the content marketing world December means one thing–You are CRAZY BUSY!!!!!

I know it’s not just us bloggers and campaign leaders, though. Here’s how it all seems to come together.

If you work in any form of retail, food industry, crafting, marketing, mail delivery, or content production December is THE busiest time of the year. We’re talking deadlines, extra work, rush jobs, and getting a heads up before the time off galore. Next, if you’re a parent you add in school and all its parties, field trips, treats, and presents. Then you throw in a good dose of Christmas cheer with decorating, wrapping, buying, shipping, plays, traditions, and more. Finish it all off with the surprise ingredient of sicknesses,  your son slipping and busting his chin wide open, and pieces of your roof blowing away ( <— yup all that just happened) and everything else that life loves to throw your way.

What’s that the recipe for?! A calendar that it jammed packed everyday with a million mile long to-do lists.

But, really, it’s the recipe for a crazy, exhausted and anything but holly jolly mommy!

^^^ I really was excited and happy, I was just suuuuper tired!

I know you feel my pain, and that’s why I’m here to give you a big ol’ dose of happy holly jolly sanity saver today! Want to know my secret weapon?!

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Repeat after me–Delicious & EASY Dinners.

Yepp! December is the best time of year to pull out all those “cheat night recipes” I’ve shared with you over the years! The one I’ve been relying on the most lately, though, is this delicious pizza! So I wanted to make sure you all knew about Freschetta Naturally Rising Pizza! Freschetta ingredients are what set it apart from other frozen pizza brands. It has a blend of 3 grains that are kneaded and rolled for dough that rises naturally, plus sauce that is made with 4 vine-ripened tomatoes, yumm! It’s freshness you can taste. Of course, you can get it at Walmart in the frozen pizza section. Even better is that right now they’re offering  special savings for Freschetta so be sure to check that out!

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This time I picked up Freschetta Naturally Rising Canadian Bacon and Pineapple and Freschetta Naturally Rising Pepperoni Pizza. The size is perfect to feed our family of four for dinner, but if you’re having guests over you’ll want to cook them both up!

Both pizzas are absolutely delicious as-is! If you have a little extra time, though, and want to make it look like you worked a lot more than you really did for dinner then these easy sauces are the perfect finishing touches for your meal!

To start off with I’ll share my recipe for Rosemary Garlic Pizza Sauce that pairs perfectly with the Freschetta Naturally Rising Pepperoni Pizza.

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Rosemary Garlic Pizza Sauce

  • 24 oz Tomato Sauce
  • 1/4 Cup Fresh Minced/Pressed Garlic
  • Fresh Rosemary (to taste, I used 3-4 long strands)
  • 2 TBSP Italian Seasoning

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Preheat your oven and cook the pizza according to the directions on the box. While it’s cooking, following the remaining instructions for the sauce.

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In a medium sized saucepan combine and mix all ingredients. Bring to a simmer over medium/high heat and allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes. It’s ready when your fresh ingredients have cooked down and all the flavors have melded together.

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Serve alongside your Freschetta Naturally Rising Pepperoni Pizza. It’s so perfect for dipping the crusts in, but tastes delicious poured on top as well!

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Enjoy!

I love buying pizza that has totally different toppings. The huge difference in flavors makes it easy to eat pizza without getting tired of it (wait, what am I saying?! Who would get tired of pizza???)

The Freschetta Naturally Rising Canadian Bacon is a fun and delicious flavor and when paired with this Cranberry Pineapple Compote Dipping Sauce it looks and tastes like something straight off of Pinterest! (Although, since you very well might be finding this post *on* Pinterest I guess it really is straight off of there…but I digress.)

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Cranberry Pineapple Compote Dipping Sauce

  • 2 Cups Fresh Cranberries
  • 6 oz 100% Pineapple Juice
  • 1 Cup Pineapple Peach Apple Sauce

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Again, you’ll want to preheat your oven and cook your pizza according to the package instructions. While it’s baking you can whip up this fun sauce!

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In a medium sauce pan combine and mix ingredients. Heat over low/medium heat for 10 minutes or until mix barely begins to simmer. You’ll want to get it hot enough that the cranberries start to pop, but not hot enough that they explode and make a huge mess (don’t ask me how I know). Stir frequently. Once the berries begin to swell and pop mash them gently against the sides to encourage them to blend even better with the rest of the sauce. Stir well until completely combined.

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This sauce can be served warm or chilled if you’d like to make it ahead of time!

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There you go! Delicious dinners at home even when life is at its craziest!!

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Remember to claim your special savings offer once you’ve purchased your pizza!

easy-pizza-dip-recipes

Make life easy for yourself and pin this post so you’ll have these recipes handy! Want them right now? Here’s the printable version:

Delicious & Easy Pizza Dip Recipes
The delicious & easy recipes for Rosemary Garlic Pizza Sauce & Cranberry Pineapple Compote Dipping Sauce . Perfect for serving alongside Freschetta Naturally Rising Pizza
Ingredients
  • 24 oz Tomato Sauce
  • 1/4 Cup Fresh Minced Garlic
  • Fresh Rosemary (to taste, I used 3-4 long strands)
  • 2 TBSP Italian Seasoning
  • 2 Cups Fresh Cranberries
  • 6 oz 100% Pineapple Juice
  • 1 Cup Pineapple Peach Apple Sauce
Instructions
  1. Rosemary Garlic Pizza Sauce: In a medium sized saucepan combine, Tomato Sauce, Fresh Minced Garlic, Fresh Rosemary & Italian Seasoning. Mix all ingredients. Bring to a simmer over medium/high heat and allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes. It’s ready when your fresh ingredients have cooked down and all the flavors have melded together.
  2. Cranberry Pineapple Compote Dipping Sauce: In a medium sauce pan combine and mix Cranberries, 100% Pineapple Juice, & Pineapple Peach Apple Sauce. Heat over low/medium heat for 10 minutes or until mix barely begins to simmer. Stir frequently. Once the berries begin to swell and pop mash them gently against the sides to encourage them to blend even better with the rest of the sauce. Stir well until completely combined.

 

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Chocolate Zucchini Bread Recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CarnationBreakfastEssentials #CollectiveBias #sponsored

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I love having traditions. I love them so much that I think they shouldn’t just be reserved for holidays, but should be worked into everyday life as well. Traditions don’t have to be big, expensive, or take much time. Instead, they’re just a great way to build time into your busy schedule to do things that are fun and intentional as a family!

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One of our recent traditions that our family loves is having “Fun Friday” each week to celebrate the end of the week and the start of the weekend together. By the end of the week, we’re all needing a break, so the perfect way to start out our Fun Fridays  is with a quick, easy, and special breakfast that I’ve made ahead of time that we can enjoy together. Like most moms I love using “sneaky” recipes that get us all the nutrition we need, while also being delicious and easy. I love keeping items like Carnation Breakfast Essentials always stocked up in our pantry for days like our Fun Fridays, and to use as a drink throughout the week. It’s great for the whole family and is as easy as mixing the powder with a glass of milk. Lately, I’ve discovered several different ways to use it as well like adding it to smoothies and using it for baking, and today I’ll be sharing our favorite with you!

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Another way we celebrate fun Friday is stopping at an amazing park and letting the kids play after I pick them up from school on Friday afternoon. They anxiously count down the days each week in anticipation of all the fun they’ll have and the new friends they’ll make. This fun tradition conveniently works into our busy schedules, gets the kids outside and playing, not to mention it’s free!

With just these few, fun, simple things you can take a normal weekday and turn it into a special tradition full of everyday magic that creates amazing memories. Here’s the promised recipe that you’ll need to start off your own amazing tradition. We love the chocolate spin on it, but feel free to purchase any of the other Carnation Breakfast Essentials flavors like Vanilla or Dark Chocolate to substitute in for a new, delicious flavor every time you bake it!

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Chocolate Zucchini Bread Recipe

This recipe makes 2 loaves.

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Ingredients

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Preheat Oven to 350 & lightly grease 2 loaf pans with cooking spray. Peel and then grate zucchini.

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In a large mixing bowl add and mix one at a time eggs, oil, sugar, vanilla, and grated zucchini until well combined.

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In a separate smaller mixing bowl combine 1 Packet Carnation Breakfast Essentials Milk Chocolate  , flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir until well combined.

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Gradually add in powder mixture from the small bowl to the larger mixing bowl ingredients, mixing until well blended.

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Pour into 2 loaf pans, filling each halfway and bake at 350 for 1 hour, or until done. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean.

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This bread turns out slightly crunchy on the outside, and deliciously dense and moist on the inside. It’s lightly flavored with the taste of Carnation Breakfast Essentials Milk Chocolate which makes it perfect for morning time. Serve with fresh fruit for a delicious, convenient, and “Fun Friday” worthy breakfast!

Here is the printable version to keep handy in your kitchen!

Chocolate Zucchini Bread Recipe
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2 loaves
This bread turns out slightly crunchy on the outside, and deliciously dense and moist on the inside. It’s lightly flavored with the taste of Carnation Breakfast Essentials Milk Chocolate which makes it perfect for breakfast!
Ingredients
  • 3 Eggs
  • 3/4 Cups Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Cups Sugar
  • 3 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 Cups Grated Zucchini
  • 1 Packet Carnation Breakfast Essentials Milk Chocolate
  • 3 1/4 Cups Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat Oven to 350 & lightly grease 2 loaf pans with cooking spray.
  2. Peel and then grate fresh zucchini.
  3. In a large mixing bowl add and mix one at a time eggs, oil, sugar, vanilla, and grated zucchini until well combined.
  4. In a separate smaller mixing bowl combine 1 Packet Carnation Breakfast Essentials Milk Chocolate , flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir until well combined.
  5. Gradually add in powder mixture from the small bowl to the larger mixing bowl ingredients, mixing until well blended.
  6. Pour into 2 loaf pans, filling each halfway and bake at 350 for 1 hour, or until done. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean.

 

Go here for even more amazing Breakfast Solutions, Ideas, and Savings! I know that if you’re like me you can never have too many amazing ways to make everyday life special!

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Ad: Delicious & Easy Chicken Sliders Bar

This post is written by me on behalf of Tyson Foods, Inc. All opinions are entirely my own. This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GameTimeHero #CollectiveBias

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In Texas fall means two things: Beautiful Weather is finally approaching and High School Football is here!

Growing up my family often went to the local high school football games, but I had no idea what attending a local game here in Texas was like until we moved here a few years ago. The first time we went to a hometown game I was stunned–we had to park blocks and blocks away, the whole town turned out for it! I love how everyone gets into the hometown spirit, and that all the schools in town have the same mascot from the time they’re in Kindergarten, which makes even younger kids want to turn out and support their hometown.

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With our recent move to a new Texas town, I knew one of the fastest and easiest ways to make it feel like home would be to attend the local football games! To make the celebration special I wanted us to have a homegating party before we left for those Friday Night Lights. Coming at the beginning of the weekend I wanted something that would be fast, easy, delicious, and customized to my family’s wide array of taste buds. Seem like a tall order? Not at all with a few tricks up my sleeve!

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Right now the Walmart Hot Deli has a great deal going on – Only $10 for a bucket of 20 wings! I love the fact that wings at the Walmart Hot Deli counter are affordably priced, great quality, fresh, fast and convenient. All of those things makes them perfect for an at-home football pre-game party or to pick up and bring to a tailgateMy family all loves boneless wings, and seeing this deal inspired me to create a Chicken Sliders Bar so that each of us could make exactly the slider we wanted, and also fill our bellies in a quick and easy way before the game!

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Tablescape: This spread looks impressive enough for company, but is also easy enough to put together for your own family before the game! The best part is that every piece of it can be purchased at Walmart. I layered Black and White tablecloths and topped them with a fun football field cloth, Green textured place-mat and football themed napkins. Black & White serving dishes fit the theme while keeping the focus on all that delicious food! Speaking of which, here are the items you’ll need for your Slider Bar:

Ingredients:

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The stars of the show were, of course, these mouth-watering boneless wings! I placed each flavor in separate, unique containers so that I could tell them apart easily. If you’re having guests over making little place cards labeling everything is a great way to make sure that the sweet lovers get the Honey BBQ and those who love spicy choose General Tso’s!

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Picking up Pre-Made Guacamole and Coleslaw from the Deli and Fresh Produce section of Walmart works double time for you as they are perfect both as toppings and sides.

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Although any type of slider bun will work, I suggest opting for a sweet, soft variety like a Hawaiian Bun. This sets off these possible flavor combinations just perfectly!

Cheese is a must when making any type of slider. For our meal, I set out a mix of double cheddar, pepper jack, and provolone cheese.

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Finish off your bar by adding in fresh veggies, ranch dressing, and chips. Once again the ranch and the chips pull double duty by adding unexpected and fun flavors and textures when used as toppings for your sliders.

The beauty of the bar is that it allows you customize your slider exactly to your taste. To give you some great options right away, however, I thought I’d share our two favorite mashups!

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Honey BBQ Gourmet Slider

  • Hawaiian Slider Bun
  • Honey BBQ Boneless Wings
  • Provolone Cheese
  • Guacamole

This slider melds sweet and creamy flavors and textures together for a Yummmmm worthy moment.

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General Tso’s Slaw Slider

  • Hawaiian Slider Bun
  • General Tso’s Boneless Chicken Wings
  • Coleslaw
  • Pepperjack Cheese

The kick and tang of the wings and cheese are balanced perfectly by the sweet of the bun and the creaminess of the coleslaw. This grown up slider is right on trend and sure to leave your guests smiling!

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All that’s left to do is eat, enjoy, and scream “Go Team!”

Looking for more amazing Wings and Game Day Recipes? Check out the amazing collection of them here for even more inspiration!

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Life Changes, Cereal Squares, and Miracles From Heaven

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ShareYourMiracles #CollectiveBias

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You’ve no doubt noticed that things have been just a little bit quieter around here on the blog and on all my social media channels lately. I once heard it said that when your online life was quiet it meant your offline life was anything but, and, at least lately, I’ve found that to be the truth!

While those of you who are my long-time devoted readers know that life is seldom routine for us, lately it’s been kicked into even crazier gear with some of the biggest life changes out there. Namely, Bob starting his new career after graduating with his Bachelors in Electrical Engineering, us house hunting for our first ever home purchase, preparing to move to the area where he’s now working, and a huge school year all-too-rapidly approaching with Tyler starting Kindergarten!

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While all of these are big, wonderful, awesome things–huge life changes like new careers, moving, purchasing a home, transferring schools, and starting school are also notoriously full of hassles and stress. It’s so easy to get bogged down in the latter part and to forget how to embrace and experience life’s big moments. I know I’ve been struggling a lot with this lately, and although your big moments right now might be different than mine, there’s no doubt that you might be experiencing some and having this same struggle, too. So today I wanted to share with you a big ol’ dose of inspiration and encouragement I received lately–and a family favorite recipe (because desserts with chocolate in them instantly help!!! amIright?! 😉 )

While I was in Walmart the other day I noticed that Miracles From Heaven had just been released. I’ve wanted to see it since the preview came out, and I’ve heard amazing things about it so I picked us up a copy. The timing of me watching it was almost uncanny. It was an amazing, moving film about the Beam Family that is full of love, faith, and spirit. It filled my heart, my eyes (like I told Amber, happy tears!), and gave me a renewed perspective. My favorite quote from the movie was this one:

As you can see, we now live like every day is a miracle… because for us, it is. – Christy Beam

Here are the ways I’m deciding to live like every day is a miracle, and I hope they’ll inspire you to live like it is as well! If you haven’t already purchased the movie there isn’t a better time to than right now because when you buy the Miracles From Heaven DVD here, $1 of your purchase will be donated to the Children’s Miracle Network!

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Perspective Through Thankfulness Nothing shifts my focus from the not-so-great to the wonderful like a good dose of perspective does. Watching Miracles From Heaven was the perfect reminder of this. How thankful I am for the huge things like my family, our health, our freedom, our faith, our jobs, down to the seemingly little things we take for granted like hot showers, air conditioning, being able to enjoy a slice of pizza ….I literally could go on for hours. Whenever we stop and embrace thankfulness it shifts our perspective and helps us embrace life’s big moments for the blessings they are!

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Embracing Big Changes Through Bonding Another favorite part of Miracles From Heaven was when the Dr. in Boston told Christy that Family was what would do her daughter the best right then. This is such a beautiful truth. No matter what any one is going through, having time together as a family is so critical. Through all of this craziness in our lives, I’ve been making sure to be intentional to spend lots of time bonding with the kids this summer. As I mentioned Tyler is getting ready to start school, which is such an important time in life! I’ve also made sure to focus just as much, if not more, on bonding with Amber. Going into 3rd grade she’s in that critical point in life when transitions are hard and even just starting a new grade is scary, let alone a whole new school in a new town. Making sure we have lots of special, fun times together gives me the ability to teach and check in on her and also gives Amber the opportunity to ask questions and learn from me. Although, much like in the movie and the dynamic between Christy and Anna Beam, I have to admit that Amber’s faith and attitudes through everything often end up in me being the one learning what true, pure, childlike faith and trust really are!

Some of our favorite ways to bond are playing board & card games together, our bedtime routine which includes reading and playing together each day, swimming in the pool, and snuggling up together to watch movies. My favorite way to bond, though, is baking together! Every summer my mom would make Cereal Squares for us, and I would help. As I got older I took over making them for our family each summer, and now that I have kids of my own making Cereal Squares together has continued on to now be one of our favorite summer traditions. It comes together in just a short while and the fact it’s no bake makes it the ideal summer dessert.

As you know, I can never keep a delicious family recipe to myself, so I’m sharing it with you all today! It’s the perfect summer treat for BBQs, Camping, Pizza Night, or just because!

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Cereal Squares Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Light Karo Syrup
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1 1/2 Cup Peanut Butter
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla
  • 8 Cups Crisp Rice Cereal
  • 1 Bag Butterscotch Chips
  • 1 Bag Dark Chocolate Chips

Butter or spray a 13×9 inch pan. In a large bowl measure out the cups of crisp rice cereal and set aside.

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In a sauce pan bring Light Karo Syrup & Sugar to a boil.

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While heating up the syrup & sugar in a double broiler begin to melt Dark Chocolate & Butterscotch Chips together. (Tip: a double broiler works best, but in a pinch you can make your own using a sauce pan fill a few inches full of water, and a metal pan placed over it.) Melting the chocolate with a barrier of water keeps it from burning.

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When the syrup and sugar are boiling remove the pan from the heat and add in the peanut butter and vanilla. Stir until blended and then pour into the large bowl of rice cereal and mix until well blended. Press firmly into the 13×9 inch pan using a spatula or turning spatula.

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When the dark chocolate & butterscotch chips are melted stir together and then pour and spread on top of the cereal mixture, creating a frosting like effect. Allow to sit until hardened, then serve. For quicker set time you may place them in the fridge.

Here’s a handy printable recipe so you can keep your laptop out of the kitchen:

Cereal Squares
Recipe Type: No Bake Dessert
Prep time:
Total time:
This delicious no-bake recipe will be sure to become a summer family tradition!
Ingredients
  • 1 Cup Light Karo Syrup
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1 1/2 Cup Peanut Butter
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla
  • 8 Cups Crisp Rice Cereal
  • 1 Bag Butterscotch Chips
  • 1 Bag Dark Chocolate Chips
Instructions
  1. Butter or spray a 13×9 inch pan.
  2. In a large bowl measure out the cups of crisp rice cereal and set aside.
  3. In a sauce pan bring Light Karo Syrup & Sugar to a boil.
  4. In a double broiler begin to melt Dark Chocolate & Butterscotch Chips together over low heat.
  5. When the syrup and sugar are boiling remove the pan from the heat and add in the peanut butter and vanilla. Stir until blended and then pour into the large bowl of rice cereal and mix until well blended. Press firmly into the 13×9 inch pan using a spatula or turning spatula.
  6. When the dark chocolate & butterscotch chips are melted stir together and then pour and spread on top of the cereal mixture, creating a frosting like effect. Allow to sit until hardened, then serve.

I hope that you are able to treasure the important things this summer, that you’ll enjoy this delicious new recipe, and that you’ll be sure to pick up a copy of Miracles From Heaven if you haven’t already! I promise you won’t regret doing any of those things!

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The Most Delicious Mini Strawberry No Bake Cheesecake Recipe

This shop for The Most Delicious Mini Strawberry No Bake Cheesecake Recipe has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #EffortlessPies #CollectiveBias

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Hurray, it’s May!!!!!!

This month is going to be one HUGE celebration here in the Elliott household for so many reasons! The biggest of which is that after 3 1/2 long years of non-stop college courses my hubby will be graduating this Saturday at the TOP of his class with a Bachelors Degree in Electrical Engineering with a Minor in Math. If that wasn’t reason enough to celebrate (which, I mean, it obviously is) we have even more cause to celebrate since hubby was also offered an amazing position with a government contracting company in Greenville, TX — just one hour away from where we are right now, which means we’ll get to stay close to his family, and still get to be in the East Texas that we’ve come to know and love.

Sandwiched in between all the joy is Mother’s Day, which is always meaningful, but especially this year because…..

My parents  (including my dearest mom!!) and sister (who is also graduating this weekend with her Bachelor’s degree) are coming to visit us here on their way back from her graduation. It’s been nearly a year since I’ve gotten to see them, so to say I’m thrilled is probably understating things.

The cherry on the top of it all (or in this case strawberry 🍓) will be the kid’s last days of school towards the end of the month, and all the fun things like Field Day, Field Trips, Color Runs, and Class Parties that go along with the last month of elementary school.

So yeah….one ✨✨BIG HUGE PARTY✨✨ all May long over here!

You all know how much I love to bake, but not during times like these! During all these celebrations, I’m going to want to be spending time celebrating and enjoying the events and our visitors, not stuck in the kitchen. That’s why I knew that Effortless Pies would be the perfect option for all these celebrations.  I was the Campaign Leader for the fall rounds of these amazing little better-for-you dessert options and after drooling over so many amazing different twists on them I went out and made them for us several times! These are seriously SO easy–here’s all you need for the basic Effortless Pie:

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  • Reddi-wip®
  • Dannon® Oikos® Key Lime Greek Yogurt
  • Keebler® Ready Crust® Mini Graham Cracker Pie Crust

 

Seriously–3 ingredients is all you need to have the easiest, better-for-you dessert ever! These are so easy Amber and Tyler can even create their own, and since it’s just graham crackers, Greek Yogurt, & Reddi-wip® it’s perfect for a daily dessert for them after dinner. Just spoon the yogurt into the crusts, top with Reddi-wip® and enjoy!

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The amazing thing about these is that you can do the 3 ingredient version, or you can add any number of mix-ins, toppings, or even turn it into a complete (but still effortless) recipe. Today I’m sharing my favorite variety so far–but once you’re done here be sure to check out all the other Amazing Effortless Pie Recipes! You can pick up everything you need for this recipe at Walmart, of course, I got all mine during my weekly grocery shopping! You can get an awesome Ibotta offer right now to make these even sweeter (because who doesn’t love saving money?)

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The Most Delicious Mini Strawberry No Bake Cheesecake Recipe

Makes 6 perfect mini-cheesecakes

Ingredients

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In a medium sized microwavable bowl heat the white bakers chocolate about 30 seconds and stir.

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Take the cream cheese and Dannon® Light & Fit® Strawberry Cheesecake Greek Yogurt and put them into the bowl with the melted chocolate. It’s important for the cream cheese to be softened so that everything will blend together well. When you’re scooping the yogurt in I like to use a small spatula so I can be sure to get every bit! The fact it’s already Strawberry Cheesecake flavored makes it sooo tasty!

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Using a blender mix these ingredients together until well blended and smooth–you don’t want any lumps!

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Measure out 1/3 Cup of Reddi-wip® — I love using this wet/dry measuring tool–it’s so handy because it pops the entire amount out so you don’t lose any of that delicious cream!

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Using a spatula gently fold the Reddi-wip® into the Yogurt mixture until well combined but light in texture. Now you’ll want to set this mixture into the fridge while you prep the berries!

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Use a blender and mince 1 cup of raspberries. For more of a frozen crumble bottom use frozen berries and for more of a compote feel use fresh–either way it’s delicious! Place a thin layer of this on the bottom of each Keebler® Ready Crust® Mini Graham Cracker Pie Crust.

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Next, spoon your yogurt mixture into your crust.

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Slice up fresh strawberries and add them on top in a star pattern.

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Melt the dark bakers chocolate in the microwave (again, about 30 seconds) and drizzle on top.

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Top with a generous helping of Reddi-wip® and enjoy!!!

If you need to make these ahead of time (which is great to do for celebrations) you can make everything up to the strawberry part. Just stick the pies in the fridge or for several days in advance in the freezer and then move them to the fridge a day ahead of time. This makes them delightfully firm with a true cheesecake texture, too!

The perfectly easy, and perfectly portioned dessert that will be a smashing success at all your upcoming celebrations!

Check out all the other amazing Effortless Pie Recipes Here–trust me, you’re going to want to pin them all!