Easy Crustless Quiche

 

You know that game where people ask questions like, “If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?”

“What one book would you take with you to a desert island?”

“If you had to live on one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?”

Well, my answer to the last one is always CHEESE.  I. Love. Cheese.  Cheddar, gruyere, mozzarella, blue, feta, goat…I’ve never come across a cheese I don’t like.  It seems that all of my kids inherited this cheese addiction, so most of the recipes we all like revolve around this delicious dairy goodness.   They’ll even eat vegetables that they normally wouldn’t touch (like spinach) if it’s covered in enough melty cheese.

So, one of our favorites is this amazing crustless quiche that my mom used to make.  It’s super easy to throw together and it can be baked right away or made the day before.  We eat it for breakfast or brunch with fruit, or for lunch or dinner with sweet potato fries or salad and bread.  I’m telling you, it’s delicious anytime and with anything.

And one of the best things about this recipe is that it’s a perfect meal to take to exhausted new moms or friends who just need a night off from cooking.  Our family eats the whole thing now that we have a seven-year-old who eats like a teenager, but I used to always split the recipe into two pans so I could take one to somebody who needed a break.

Enough about why you should make this.  Here’s how:

Gather your ingredients.

  • 10-12 oz. package of frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed until dry
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup flour (all-purpose or whole wheat)
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 10 drops Tabasco sauce (optional)
  • 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese

First thaw the spinach.

When it’s completely thawed, squeeze out all the water.  You can use a cheesecloth if you have one, or place it in a colander and press all the water out.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Measure cottage cheese and sour cream into a large bowl.

Add eggs.

Mix well.

Add parmesan cheese (or have an adorable helper do it for you.)

Try not to eat any.  Did I mention my kids love cheese as much as I do?  This one proudly calls herself a cheese monster.

Add flour (not pictured) and onion powder.

If you want a little kick and more flavor, add tabasco sauce.  One of my children has a serious aversion to anything even remotely spicy, and he can detect even the tiniest hint of spice, so I left it out of our quiche.

Once all of this is mixed well, add the mozzarella…

And the spinach (which should be really dry.)

Mix everything together and spread mixture in an 8-inch round pan.  I used a springform pan but anything that is deep enough will work. Alternatively, pour into two pie plates and make two quiches.  Just make sure to adjust the baking time.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour, or until golden around the edges and no longer jiggly in the middle.  If you’re making two, bake for 30-40 minutes.  If you’re making this the day before, simply cover and refrigerate until you’re ready to bake it.

Let cool for about 5 minutes before serving.  And if you’re tempted to feel guilty about all that dairy you’re eating, just remember it’s low-carb and packed with protein and spinach 😉

Easy Crustless Quiche
Recipe Type: Breakfast, Brunch, Make-ahead
Author: Abby
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6 servings
Delicious and easy spinach quiche
Ingredients
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup flour (all-purpose or whole wheat)
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 10 drops of tabasco sauce (optional)
  • 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
  • 10-12 oz. package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed until dry.
Instructions
  1. Thaw spinach completely.
  2. Squeeze all the water out of the spinach using a cheescloth, or press in a colander until dry.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  4. Mix cottage cheese, sour cream, and eggs.
  5. Add parmesan, flour, onion powder, and tabasco sauce and mix well.
  6. Stir in mozzarella and thawed spinach.
  7. Spread mixture in an 8-inch round pan and bake for 1 hour, or until edges are golden brown and middle is no longer jiggly.

 

 

 

 

 

Chicken Mushroom Rice Recipe & The Story of Thomas

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

Before I get into our story, I want to make sure you know about this great chance to win big and do good!

Enter this sweepstakes for a chance to win $25,000 and other prizes! Register your purchase at www.nutrishfureverhome.com

The Grand Prize is $25,000 and a one-year supply of Nutrish® dry dog food or one year worth of Nutrish® dry cat. And there’s also 3 First Prizes: $5,000 and a one-year supply of Nutrish® dry dog food or one year worth of Nutrish® dry cat.

Entering is easy, too! Purchase any Nutrish®-only product during the Sweepstakes Period, then visit www.nutrishfureverhome.com and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the registration.

Our family had always dreamed of owning a dog. Once my husband got out of the Coast Guard, that dream became a reality and we were so thrilled for 3 happy years. Then, right after we moved into our new home when he graduated college, a horrible, tragic incident struck and we were left grieving, scarred, and without a dog.

I swore because of the pain and the trauma, I’d never, ever want another dog again.

Just like the cliche goes, though, time heals all wounds and this past summer, one year later, my heart had started to ache for a sweet, furry friend once more. After talking about it we decided to look around at all the local shelters, wanting to adopt our next dog. Of course, we were all thinking about a puppy, and when we walked into the shelter that day it was to look at some pups I’d seen online.

I let the staff know that we were looking for a sweet, mild, low maintenance kind of dog. “Oh!” She told me, “You just *have* to meet Thomas!”

We walked past the cages of wriggling, frenzied, barking bodies. And there, in his kennel, sat Thomas. As calm and quiet and happy as could be. As soon as he came out to us Amber looked and me and said, “Oh mom. This is OUR DOG.” I wasn’t convinced and told her that surely we wanted to look at those puppies.

We looked around the entire shelter but just keep coming back to Thomas. After I began to play with and pet him, I became more and more convinced. It became perfectly clear that this ridiculously adorable little mutt had adopted us.

Indeed, 3-year-old Thomas was OUR dog!

He was at the shelter because his owner had passed away, and he kept getting passed over because of his age, and because of his one “peg leg”. A back leg got broken when he was a tiny puppy and wasn’t set right–so now it’s permanently straight. He has no idea about this, and runs and jumps and plays just like any other puppy. He really was so perfect for us, and now a few months later I can’t imagine life without his sweet smiling little face! We have helped him find his Furever Home™ and he has brought so much joy and healing to our hearts and lives!

I’m not the only one with a soft spot for shelter pets! Rachael Ray™ Nutrish®  Furever Home™ Helps Shelter Pets Find The Home They Deserve. In fact, this month October 2017, your support will help Rachael Ray Nutrish donate $250,000 to benefit shelter pets. Rachael’s Rescue® was created for all of the forgotten pets – the ones who might not have someone who loves them as much as they deserve. A portion of proceeds from each sale of Nutrish is donated to The Rachael Ray Foundation, which helps animals in need through Rachael’s Rescue. Through September 2017, Rachael’s Rescue has donated more than $21 million dollars to pet charities and other organizations that do good for animals.

I picked up my bag of Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Dog Food at my local Dollar General. I love it when I can do good by purchasing something we already need, and the chance to win a sweepstakes on top of all that is just the icing on the dog treat, so to say.

All Nutrish dry dog and cat food is natural with added vitamins & minerals, and wholesome, delicious ingredients.

In fact the Chicken, Brown Rice, and Veggies Nutrish recipe that I purchased Thomas looked like such a delicious recipe combination that it inspired me to pull together a human version for us as a family to enjoy while Thomas noshed on his Nutrish dinner!

Chicken Mushroom Rice Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • Kickin’ Chicken Seasoning
  • Italian Seasoning
  • 1 Lemon
  • 1 Cup Chopped Mushrooms
  • 1/2 Cup Red Onion, Diced
  • 1/2 Cup Butter
  • Brown Rice

Squeeze the juice of one lemon over Chicken Breasts.

Season Chicken Breasts with Kickin’ Chicken & Italian Seasoning to taste. For ours, I just sprinkled the tops with Kickin’ Chicken spices, and then once they were chopped up I added 2 TBSP of Italian Seasoning. I wanted the Italian seasoning to be the primary flavoring, but the Kickin’ Chicken flavoring gave it that added depth and zing.

Cut Chicken into Bite-Sized Pieces, then Chop Mushrooms and Red Onion into small pieces.

Prepare Brown Rice according to package directions.

While the rice is cooking, in a skillet melt butter (you can also do 1/2 butter and 1/2 olive oil, but I love how butter caramelizes the mushrooms & the onions) and add in Chicken. Cook until white throughout. Add in Onion and Mushrooms and cook until they melt down and caramelize.

Serve the Chicken mixture over top of the Brown Rice.

This meal is absolutely perfect for a busy week day dinner, and quick and easy to pull together! Which is just perfect for a family filled with activities and pets to love on!

Do you have a shelter pet story? I’d love to hear it! Also, don’t forget to Enter the Sweepstakes!

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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!

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!

Great Grains No Bake Breakfast Cookies Recipe

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

Great-Grains-Breakfast-Cookies

Can you believe that we’re spiraling quickly towards the end of January already??? Every new year brings thoughts and reflections to what you can do to make a new, or better you. Did you know that by the end of the first month almost half of everyone has jumped ship on those good intentions, though?! That means while it very likely that while you started out strong a few weeks ago, life and all the complications it bring is already threatening to mess up your mojo!!!

Don’t worry! I’ve found that the BEST WAY to kick-starting the year well is by making small changes that are so easy and delicious or fun that they don’t feel like a sacrifice. Becoming your best you is a life-long process, so it’s got to be something you are willing to live with forever! For me, this means getting active while doing something fun, like watching shows on my tablet while jogging or playing at the park with my kids. It also means eating food that’s as nutritious as it is delicious.

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We all know that the importance of breakfast can’t be overstated. And, fortunately, it’s never been easier to find a healthy and tasty breakfast options! Lately, my family has been loving Post cereals! (Tyler *literally* did a happy dance when he saw the boxes–go watch it here) They contain fiber that prepares your body for the day and keeps you full until lunch. And they have whole grains that are packed with nutrients, including protein, fiber, B vitamins, and antioxidants. Plus I can find all their yummy varieties (like Post Cereals Great Grains, Post Cereals Honey Bunches of Oats Honey Roasted, and Post Cereals Grape Nuts Original) at Walmart! So stocking up during my weekly trip is a breeze (ok, these days it’s honestly more like 3 times a week, but I live RIGHT next door so it’s ok). With all of these delicious and better-for-you options, you’re bound to find a favorite for everyone in the family.

 

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All these cereals are delicious to eat as-is (the kids favorite) or with milk (if you’re like most Americans) and a great way to kick-start your day before diving into school or work.

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Grape Nuts always gives me big-time nostalgia because it was the only thing I ate for breakfast for I think about a year when I was in my young teens. I remember cooking up their hot recipe and munching on it curled up in a blanket tucked into the corner of our itty-bitty kitchen on snowy Wyoming mornings.

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Because it is the time of year when all those good intentions start to slip, not to mention the fact I have a wicked sweet tooth that only raises it’s ugly head late at night, I put my mind to creating something for our family that would be nutritious enough for breakfast, but delicious enough for my dessert. As a result these Great Grains No Bake Breakfast Cookies were born and they totally fit all sides of the bill!!!! Here’s what you’ll need:

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Great Grains No Bake Breakfast Cookies Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Post Cereal
  • 1 Cup Crunchy All Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1/4 Cup Chia Seeds
  • 1/4 Cup Ground Flax Seed
  • 1/4 Cup Raw Honey
  • (Optional) 1/4 Cup Dark Chocolate Melted for drizzling

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Take all ingredients and combine in a medium to large mixing bowl. You can use 2 cups of Post Cereals Great Grains Cranberry Almond Crunch as shown here, or you can use 1 Cup of the Great Grains Cereal (there are a ton of different varieties so pick your favorite!) and 1 cup of Grape Nuts. The thing I love about this recipe is it’s sooo forgiving and easy to change out the cereal, so you’ll always get a slightly different but delicious taste!

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Combine ingredients well, smooshing down the cereal so it crunches into little pieces and combines with the peanut butter and honey.

Chill for one hour in the fridge.

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Take out and shape into cookies! I found this works best if you use a big spoon to scoop the amount out, and then use your hand to shape them the rest of the way.

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If wanted drizzle with melted dark chocolate (trust me, you DO want to! 😉 )

Keep chilled until ready to serve! They’ll hold up out of the fridge, but they’re just so tasty chilled!

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Even if for some reason you’re not a cereal person you should still seriously tries these!!! They’re so delicious and I love how they really taste like a cookie to me (I’m really picky when it comes to nutritious food that tries to be dessert), but they’re also jam-packed full of nutrition!

Looking for more amazing recipes and inspiration? Check out This Awesomesauce Cereal Anytime Board on Pinterest (my happy place!) and don’t forget to Pin This Post as well!

Want the recipe right now? Here’s a handy-dandy printable version for you!

Great Grains No Bake Breakfast Cookies Recipe
These no bake cookies are delicious enough for the biggest sweet tooth, but nutritious enough for breakfast!
Ingredients
  • 2 cups Post Cereal
  • 1 Cup Crunchy All Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1/4 Cup Chia Seeds
  • 1/4 Cup Ground Flax Seed
  • 1/4 Cup Raw Honey
  • (Optional) 1/4 Cup Dark Chocolate Melted for drizzling
Instructions
  1. Combine in a medium to large mixing bowl.
  2. You can use 2 cups of Post Cereals Great Grains Cranberry Almond Crunch, or you can use 1 Cup of the Great Grains Cereal any variety) and 1 cup of Grape Nuts.
  3. Combine ingredients well
  4. Chill for one hour in the fridge.
  5. Form into Cookie Shape
  6. If desired drizzle with melted dark chocolate
  7. Keep chilled until ready to serve! They’ll hold up out of the fridge, but they’re just so tasty chilled!

 

Easy Meal Ideas for The New Year

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

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And just like that, we’ve sailed past Christmas and are rushing towards the New Year faster than you can say how-on-earth-did-that-year-go-by-so-fast?

I’ve loved starting a new year ever since I was a little girl. It’s always felt like a brand new journal with nothing written in it yet. A fresh start, a chance to hit the “reset” button on life and make beautiful entries.

With 2017 I have several things I want to keep working towards just like always. A big thing that I’m going to re-focus on is being intentional. That’s a huge buzzword these days, though, and it can be easy to say “I want to be intentional” without having any real plan of how to make that happen. So this week as I prepare to jump back into “real life” again next week I’m stopping to set up some plans to help me succeed.

The biggest areas I want to be more intentional about are using my time more efficiently, and keeping my energy and health at the best they can possibly be. Every year after the crazy holiday scramble that started back in October I find that my over-run schedule leads to one too many burnt out mindless scrollings of my Facebook feed, and my overtired stress hunger lead to one too many Christmas cookies. I’m happy to give myself leeway, of course, because life is life and celebrations are wonderful. Come December 26th, though, I’m ready to start making healthier choices and trade my mindless scrolling and snacking for timers, planners, and re-picking up my usual good habits.

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The best thing to do when you decide to be intentional is to set yourself up for success and leave no room for excuses. This means passing out the last of the goodies, and stocking up your fridge, and especially your freezer, with better choices for quick meals made at home, especially for meals like lunch. Recently hubby and I went to Target (kid free, so fun! I picked up a coffee there and it was like a date!!) and after we got way too distracted by all their fabulous home decor options we headed over to stock up on LEAN CUISINE® Marketplace Options because Target has a *fantastic* selection of them! You’re not going to want to miss out because Target will have their lowest prices of the season for all Lean Cuisine entrees at $1.99 (normally $3.00). Get in-store and stock up for the new year and winter season from 1/1 – 1/31!

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I actually fell in love with LEAN CUISINE®  almost exactly a year ago. I was actually the Campaign Leader for the LEAN CUISINE® Campaign. I hadn’t ever tried them before that (crazy, I know!) but to that point I’d been pretty much just stuck with leftovers for lunches, which I was getting very tired of. I had tried different brands of frozen meal options before and had always been left less than impressed.

It didn’t take me long before I decided I had to try out LEAN CUISINE® though. All the blogger’s photos were absolutely delicious looking–I felt like I was looking at food they made from scratch, plus it had to taste good if they all raved about how they ate it every day. Then, when I kept reading about the options LEAN CUISINE® offered and how many of them were non-GMO, gluten-free, high in protein, and with organic ingredients, I thought they were worth checking out.

What really hooked me once I tried them, though, is that they were SOOOO tasty! I loved that I could pick one out, pop it in the microwave, and have an absolutely filling and delicious lunch ready in minutes. This is so perfect for me especially now that the kids are in school and I’m working every day from home. I just pop one in and then stop to enjoy a quick lunch break when it’s ready.

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With choices like LEAN CUISINE® Marketplace Vermont White Cheddar Mac & Cheese , LEAN CUISINE® Marketplace Spicy Penne Arrabbiata, and LEAN CUISINE® Marketplace Sesame Chicken these meals are also a fabulous option for hectic nights when life gets in the way and I need something easy without resorting to ordering something in or reaching for something in a can filled with preservatives. Because let’s be honest, even in January life is still life and it’s bound to stay at its usual level of crazy, at least it always does for our family!

I love that I can whip up a deliciously easy side of Broiled Broccoli & Carrots, pop in the White Cheddar Mac & Cheese, eat a satisfying meal and then get on to family time or extra work or whatever life has for us that night! I make sure to keep our freezer stocked up with LEAN CUISINE® meals, and my fridge full of fresh produce and that way I never have an excuse not to be intentional about what I’m putting in my body.

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If you’ve never tried carrots and broccoli together before you absolutely must! We first made this side to serve with fancy grilled meals, like steak and crab, but I loved it so much I adapted it so I can make it in the oven during the drizzling, cold winter months here in Texas. Here’s the super simple recipe!

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Broiled Broccoli & Carrots

Ingredients

  • 1 Broccoli Crown
  • Bag of Baby Carrots
  • Olive Oil
  • Butter

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. If you work from home you can do this a little before the dinner rush starts and everyone else arrives home or if you work outside of the home do this as soon as you walk in the door and by the time you’re settled in your oven will be good to go!

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Pull off several of the bunches of the broccoli crown (you can chop it up if you’d like but I prefer just to pull it off so I’m not making a big mess, plus it’s just as easy). Place those along with a handful of baby carrots into a small oven safe dish. Drizzle with olive oil and put 1-3 tbsp of butter on top, divided.

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Cover with tinfoil and Bake at 400 Degrees for 20 Minutes.

When the timer goes off put your LEAN CUISINE® meal of choice into the microwave and cook according to instructions. As I mentioned my personal favorite to serve up with this side is the Vermont White Cheddar Mac & Cheese. However, the LEAN CUISINE® Marketplace Ricotta Cheese & Spinach Ravioli also tastes incredibly delicious with it as well!

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While your meal is cooking switch the oven to Broil.

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While your LEAN CUISINE® meal is cooling take the side out of the oven and allow to cool as well. The top should be a little blackened because of the broiling and both the broccoli & carrots should be fork tender. This makes for the perfect side!

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Now that’s all that’s left to do is sit and enjoy your delicious meal and then get back to life!

What’s your favorite LEAN CUISINE® option? Leave a comment and let me know!

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Don’t forget to pin this awesome side dish recipe!

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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!

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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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Gournay Chicken Appetizer Recipe

This shop for Boursin® Garlic & Fine Herbs Cheese to make this delicious and easy Gournay Chicken Appetizer Recipe has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #BoursinCheese #CollectiveBias

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Christmastime growing up was magical.

It all started out on Christmas Eve. The daytime was just a fun lazy one, brimming with anticipation for what was to come. After dinner the house was a flurry of activity, putting on our Christmas best and piling into the car to head to the candlelight service. A truly candlelight service. I am always a little disappointed when I attend them now, and by “candlelight service” they mean one song with candles that you hold. Our entire service was done only by the light of flickering Christmas candles, and it was beautiful.

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Christmas Eve photo with my youngest siblings in our “Christmas Best” from 2005

After the service, we would pile back into the car and merry go “over the creek and through the sagebrush to Grandmother’s house!” (Southwest Wyoming has a lack of both river and trees). There we would spend my favorite part of Christmas. It was full of extended family packed elbow to elbow laughing and shouting. It meant the Christmas Story, Christmas Carols, and early presents. And, of course, it meant food. Lots and lots of delicious appetizers and sweets!

Now immediate families have expanded into extended families, my sweet Grandpa has gone to spend Christmas with the reason for it, and we celebrated Christmas Eve “In Grandmother’s House” for the last time 2 years ago, as shortly after she had to be moved to a nursing home. I will always treasure that one last chance to show my kids what a magical Christmas tradition it was.

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Now those sweet traditions have past and it’s time for me to focus on making new but just as special traditions for my own family. Ones that they can look back on and treasure. Ones full of Christmas magic. Full of presents and stories and delicious appetizers of our own. The one appetizer that is sure to make an appearance from now on will be this amazingly delicious but oh-so-easy Gournay Chicken Appetizer Recipe

If you’ve never put together a cheese plate or a cheese plate appetizer before don’t run off! It seems super complicated and sophisticated, but in reality, they’re all the rage right now because they’re as easy as they are delicious! I took a twist on the trending cheese plate and turn it into bite-sized finger food appetizers that are perfect for a huge Christmas party like the ones we always have had. I’ll be making it again to bring to our new Christmas tradition–the Christmas Party family reunion with my mother-in-law’s side of the family this year!

Here are the details on how you can make this smooth and savory appetizer part of your family’s yearly traditions too!

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First, you’ll need to go to–you guessed it, Walmart! It’s no surprise that if you see me post a recipe all the ingredients most likely came from my store, which is oh-too-conveniently located literally 2 minutes from my doorstep. What you might not have known is that they carry cheese plate worthy cheeses! They really do! I found this beyond delicious Boursin® Garlic & Fine Herbs Cheese in the little-refrigerated section of my store near the deli. This was the perfect flavor combo for my recipe, but if you’d like to mix things up you can also find it in these delicious flavors!

If you’ve never tried this creamy, crumbly cheese you absolutely must! It’s made to wow and is pretty and versatile enough that it goes wonderfully with lovely decor, accessories, and pairings!

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Here’s the whole shopping list you’ll need:

  • 2 Boursin® Garlic & Fine Herbs Cheese (there is even an iBotta offer for it right now so be sure to check that out!)
  • 2 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • Roasted Garlic & Herb Seasoning for meat
  • Sturdy Crackers in flavor of choice
  • Butter
  • Olive Oil
  • Lemon juice
  • Fresh Mushrooms
  • Fresh Red Onion
  • Pomegranate seeds & Fresh Rosemary for plating and added tang (optional)

Squeeze lemon juice over chicken breasts. Season chicken breasts liberally with Roasted Garlic & Herb Seasoning. If desired leave in fridge to marinate in season for a few hours.

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Roughly chop both fresh mushrooms and red onion. You may add in 1 cup of each or adjust measurements to taste. Set aside.

When ready to begin cooking slice chicken into thin strips.

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Over medium-high heat combine and melt enough olive oil and butter to cover bottom of large skillet. When the oil and butter are melted and hot add chicken and saute until nearly cooked through.

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When chicken is white on the outside, add additional butter and olive oil if needed and then add in the chopped mushrooms and onions.

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Saute until both mushrooms and onions have caramelized and chicken is cooked through.

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Display on platter with Boursin® Garlic & Fine Herbs Cheese and crackers.

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To serve spread Boursin® Garlic & Fine Herbs Cheese onto a cracker, then top with one piece of chicken and some caramelized mushrooms and onions.

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It is sooooo delicious you guys!! Each bite is an explosion of savory sensations. Everyone is going to be raving at your holiday party so be sure to make enough! The beauty of this recipe is that it’s easy to tweak the amounts!

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What’s your favorite Christmas Tradition or Recipe — past or present? Leave me a comment and let me know!

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Also, don’t forget to pin this post–you don’t want to miss out on this delicious cheese for all your platters and for this amazing appetizer!

If you’d like the recipe right now, here is a printable version!

Gournay Chicken Appetizer Recipe
Recipe Type: Appetiser
Author: Nicole
These bite sized appetisers explode with savory sensations and are the perfect answer to a cheese plate inspired serving that can work for a large crowd.
Ingredients
  • 2 Boursin® Garlic & Fine Herbs Cheese
  • 2 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • Roasted Garlic & Herb Seasoning for meat
  • Sturdy Crackers in flavor of choice
  • Butter
  • Olive Oil
  • Lemon juice
  • Fresh Mushrooms
  • Fresh Red Onion
  • Pomegranate seeds & Fresh Rosemary for plating and added tang (optional)
Instructions
  1. Squeeze lemon juice over chicken breasts.
  2. Season chicken breasts liberally with Roasted Garlic & Herb Seasoning. If desired leave in fridge to marinate in season for a few hours.
  3. Roughly chop both fresh mushrooms and red onion. You may add in 1 cup of each or adjust measurements to taste. Set aside.
  4. When ready to begin cooking slice chicken into thin strips.
  5. Over medium-high heat combine and melt enough olive oil and butter to cover bottom of large skillet. When the oil and butter are melted and hot add chicken and saute until nearly cooked through.
  6. When chicken is white on the outside, add additional butter and olive oil if needed and then add in the chopped mushrooms and onions.
  7. Saute until both mushrooms and onions have caramelized and chicken is cooked through.
  8. Display on platter with Boursin® Garlic & Fine Herbs Cheese and crackers.
  9. To serve spread Boursin® Garlic & Fine Herbs Cheese onto a cracker, then top with one piece of chicken and some caramelized mushrooms and onions.

 

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Creamy M&M’S® Brownie Bites Recipe

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

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The tree is up and decorated, Christmas music fills my office as I sit clicking away at the keyboard, and I’m currently in full–on festive scheming and planning mode. It’s officially the most wonderful time of the year!!

As much as I love everything about Christmas and all the many traditions we have that go along with it, if I would be hard pressed into picking a favorite it would end up being baking. Making our special once-a-year recipes is something I’ve always treasured and loved! It’s the tradition that gives back twofold — once with the gift of family time as I bake and create the delicious treat, and then once again with giving the gift of a sweet treat to someone we love! Our family has classic holiday recipes that come out each year, but every year I also try to add new, fun things to our baking bucket list as well.

We get to see my  brother-in-law’s family just once a year, so we always squeeze every bit of fun out of the time we have together, even if it’s just a few days. I always try to make something delicious to gift them with while they’re visiting us as well. Since he’s in the military they’re often in transition, and this year his entire family is actually in the middle of living in a motel for 6 months for a school he’s attending. During times like this, we don’t want to be burdening them down with a bunch of gifts to try to take back and figure out what to do with once they get there. Instead, we opt for clutter-free gifts like delicious treats and experiences we can all enjoy together.

This year I decided to whip up a batch of Creamy M&M’S® Brownie Bites as the sweet part of their gift. You already know how obsessed I am with brownies, and you can never go wrong with bite size, creamy, and M&M’S®!

Were they a hit? Well let’s just say that my sister-in-law was raving about how my brother-in-law loved them so much and, get this, he doesn’t even like sweets!!! I knew right then and there I had created a masterpiece, especially when she asked for the recipe. (Here you go, Lindsey! 😉 ) This was confirmed when my mother-in-law admitted sneaking the second container I brought down for sharing into her room so that she could keep it to enjoy for herself throughout the holiday season!

Can’t wait to make these so you’ll be the star of the show at your next friends or family gathering this season? Here’s what you’ll need–you’ll be amazed at just how easy they are to re-create!

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You’ll be shopping at Walmart, of course! I love using them for all my holiday cooking and baking! You can find the Pillsbury™ items in the baking aisle. I also found a fun and convenient center aisle display with holiday baking goodies. It included the special M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits that I needed as well!

Here’s your shopping list for this recipe:

  • Pillsbury™ Family Size Chocolate Fudge Brownie Mix (and items to make brownies as listed on back of packaging)
  • Pillsbury™ Creamy Supreme® Vanilla Flavored Frosting
  • M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits (be sure to look for the special holiday packaging so you can get the Green & Red only!)
  • CRISCO® No-Stick Cooking Spray

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Best of all? Right now you can get the Ibotta offer listed above! Just click on the photo to go check out the details!

Items also needed:

  • Mini Muffin Baking Pan
  • Cake Decorating/Piping set or large plastic bag for piping frosting
  • Mini Tart Shaper or small rounded object for pressing down brownies into cups

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Now it’s time for the fun part–baking! First, preheat your oven to 325.

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Next, follow the directions on the back of the Pillsbury™ Family Size Chocolate Fudge Brownie Mix Box to create brownie batter.

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Spray your mini muffin pan well with CRISCO® No-Stick Cooking Spray. This step is vital as you’ll be scooping out the brownies once cooled, and if it is not well sprayed they will break apart.

Spoon brownie batter into cups until nearly full, you’ll want them to get all lovely and puffed up because you’ll be pressing the middles down and you need those good “cups” for holding the M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits.

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Bake for 14 Minutes or until the brownies have puffed up and no longer look wet. Keep a close eye because you do not want these to over bake! Allow them to cool for only a moment, and then press down the middles firmly to create a bowl. I use a mini-tart shaper, but any round object that’s the right size will work.

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Once the brownies have cooled completely use a butter knife to trace around the edges and get them out of the pan. Place on a cooling rack & fill with M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits. This recipe will actually fill your pan full twice (perfect so there’s some for your family to enjoy and some to share!) Once you have the first batch out get your second batch cooking in the oven as you begin to decorate.

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Using either a cake decorating kit or a plastic bag with the tip snipped off, pipe the Pillsbury™ Creamy Supreme® Vanilla Flavored Frosting on top of the brownie and over the M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits. I wanted to create what looked like little snow-covered trees, so I piped it with a wide base coming to a pointed top. You could also use Pillsbury™ Funfetti® Green Vanilla Flavored Frosting to create green “trees” if desired.

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Allow the frosting to sit for about 5-10 minute until it just begins to set. The take additional M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits and stick into the frosting, to decorate your little mini “trees” with “ornaments”.

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How adorable and delicious looking are these?!?! The next step is to sneak taste test at least a few, you know, just to make sure they turned out well.

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Once you’ve finished the gift of family time of baking and eating these for yourself, it’s time to spread the love! Pack them up in a sturdy container with plenty of room for the tops. These containers were the perfect height and width and I’ll be sharing more about them in a blog post tomorrow with another delicious recipe plus a fun printable and idea to pay it forward, so be sure not to miss that!

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Complete your sweet treat with a simple bow and you’re ready to continue the holiday magic through gifting these delicious Creamy M&M’S® Brownie Bites to all your family, friends, and neighbors!

Looking for even more amazing recipes to bake this year (of course, you are!!) Check out all the jaw-dropping and amazing recipes for your family to make here!

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Don’t forget to Pin This Post so you don’t lose it!

Want it right now? Here’s a printable recipe:

Creamy M&M’S® Brownie Bites Recipe
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Nicole Elliott
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 24 Brownies
These delicious Brownie Bites look impressive but are so simple to put together and sure to become a new family holiday tradition!
Ingredients
  • Pillsbury™ Family Size Chocolate Fudge Brownie Mix (and items to make brownies as listed on back of packaging)
  • Pillsbury™ Creamy Supreme® Vanilla Flavored Frosting
  • M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits
  • CRISCO® No-Stick Cooking Spray
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. Follow the directions on the back of the Pillsbury™ Family Size Chocolate Fudge Brownie Mix Box to create brownie batter.
  3. Spray mini muffin pan well with CRISCO® No-Stick Cooking Spray.
  4. Spoon brownie batter into cups until nearly full.
  5. Bake for 14 Minutes or until the brownies have puffed up and no longer look wet
  6. Allow them to cool for 1-2 minutes and then press down the middles firmly to create a bowl using mini-tart shaper.
  7. Once the brownies have cooled completely use a butter knife to trace around the edges and get them out of the pan.
  8. Place on a cooling rack & fill with M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits.
  9. Repeat with 2nd batch of Brownies
  10. Pipe Pillsbury™ Creamy Supreme® Vanilla Flavored Frosting on top of the brownie and over the M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits to form peak
  11. Allow the frosting to sit for about 5-10 minute until it just begins to set. The take additional M&M’S® Brand Minis Milk Chocolate Baking Bits and stick into the frosting.
  12. Allow frosting to set completely & store in a lidded container until ready to serve or gift.
  13. Enjoy!

 

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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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