Monday, May 19, 2014

The Healthy Quinoa Bowl

I'm a little obsessed with quinoa and quinoa recipes.  I like to make a big batch on Sunday afternoon and eat it for lunch.  I found this quinoa recipe on YourTango by Sharon Chen of Gourmet Persuasian.  It's simple. Light. Healthy.  Perfect for summer.  Happy cooking!

YourTango's Dinner For Two Quinoa Bowl Recipe
For the salad
1 cup quinoa
1 cup broccoli florets, finely chopped
1 package of 10.8 oz mixed vegetables (corn, carrots, peas, green beans)
1/4 cup red onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 stem green onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons cilantro leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves, chopped

For the dressing
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1. Cook quinoa in a rice cooker just like how you cook regular rice. It takes about 10 minutes to cook 1 cup quinoa in my Tatung Ricer Cooker and Steamer. If you don't have a rice cooker yet, here's what to do: Rinse quinoa under cold water and drain. Place it in a pot and cover with 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat, cover, and simmer for 12 to 14 minutes, or until all of the water is absorbed. Remove from the heat and keep covered for 5 more minutes. Transfer the quinoa to a bowl and fluff it with a fork; let cool.
2. Cook mixed vegetables with chopped broccoli florets according to the package instruction.(Empty frozen contents of bag into a saucepan. Add 1 cup water. Cover and cook over medium-high heat for 5 to 6 minutes.) Stir occasionally. Drain and set aside.
3. In a small bowl, combine lime juice, Dijon mustard, olive oil, sea salt, and ground black pepper. Mix well.
4. In a large bowl, combine cooked vegetables, red onion, bell pepper, cilantro, basil, and green onion. Add quinoa and pour the dressing over. Stir until even. Dish, serve warm or cold.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Sandwiches

I was at a First Communion party when a rumbling went through the house.  Lots of murmurs of people wanting to know who made these cookies and what exactly were these pieces of perfection?  I had to have one and see what the fuss was all about.  I'm glad I did and a little angry that I did.  I definitely have my next dessert I am making for my next gathering but I also could eat a plate of these!   I can't wait to experiment a little with these.  Dark Chocolate Chips.  Sea salt.  Sprinkles.  Lots of combinations floating through my head.  Happy eating!  

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Sandwiches
Makes 16
2 cups milk chocolate chips
½ cup creamy peanut butter
¼ cup powdered sugar, sifted
32 Ritz crackers
1. Place chocolate chips over a double boiler and melt.
2. Place peanut butter and sugar into a mixing bowl and whisk until smooth.
3. Spread a small amount of the peanut butter mixture onto a cracker and sandwich together with another cracker.
4. Repeat until all the crackers and peanut butter filling have been used.
5. Place crackers onto a parchment line baking sheet and place in freezer for about 30 minutes.
6. Once the chocolate has melted, using a small pair of tongs, or tweezers, dip the chilled peanut butter sandwiches into the chocolate until completely covered.
7. Shake off any access chocolate and place back onto the parchment lined baking sheet.
8. Repeat with the remaining sandwiches and set aside to dry, about an hour.
9. Carefully peel from the parchment and serve.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

BLT Pasta Salad

I'm hoping to encourage some warmer weather by posting a perfect BBQ pasta salad.  I cut corners by using a package of Oscar Mayer bacon bits instead of frying bacon.  Happy cooking!  

6 slices bacon
1 pound elbow macaroni
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 small red onion, diced very small
1/2 small green bell pepper, diced very small
1 (1 ounce) package ranch salad dressing mix
1 (8 ounce) package Cheddar cheese, cut into small cubes

1. Cook bacon in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat until crisp, about 10 minutes; drain on a plate lined with paper towels until cool. Crumble the bacon.

2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook elbow macaroni in the boiling water, stirring occasionally, until cooked through but firm to the bite, 8 minutes; drain.

3. Rinse macaroni with cold water until cool; drain.

4.  Mix cooled macaroni, crumbled bacon, mayonnaise, red onion, green bell pepper, ranch salad dressing mix, and Cheddar cheese together in a large bowl.

5. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day!

Surprise your valentine with this simple Valentine's Chex Mix and they'll know you love them!  Happy Valentine's Day!


4 1/2 cups Rice Chex® cereal                                        
1/2 cup white vanilla baking chips
1/4 cup peanut butter
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup red, white and pink candy-coated chocolate candies
2 tablespoons red or pink jimmies sprinkles


1.Place cereal in medium bowl. In small microwavable bowl, microwave vanilla chips, peanut butter and butter uncovered on High 1 minute to 1 minute 30 seconds, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth. Pour peanut butter mixture over cereal, stirring until evenly coated.

2.Place 1/2 of the cereal mixture in 1-gallon food-storage plastic bag. Add powdered sugar. Seal bag; shake until well coated. Spread on waxed paper or foil; cool about 15 minutes.

3.Meanwhile, stir candies and sprinkles into remaining cereal mixture. Spread on waxed paper or foil; cool about 15 minutes.

4.In serving bowl, mix both cereal mixtures. Store in airtight container.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Chinese BBQ Turkey Wraps

I'm not going to lie and say losing the pregnancy weight has been easy for me.  It hasn't.  At all.  I didn't lose a ton of weight from breastfeeding. I'm not losing a ton of weight from running after two little ones.  I actually left the hospital weighing more than when I went in to deliver.  It hasn't  been easy but this year I am truly committed to losing that weight.  We have a big trip planned in 2015 for my husband's big birthday and our 5 year anniversary. I want to get back to a body I'm really comfortable with but do it in a healthy way.  I've really been trying to incorporate healthy meals that the whole family will enjoy.   I'm not big on cooking two separate meals for our family.  These Chinese BBQ Turkey wraps are from Slender Kitchen and I love these more than any new recipe I've tried lately. Happy healthy cooking!

Photo credit

  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced red or yellow onion
  • 1/2 cup minced carrots
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 tsp. ginger, minced
  • 1 lb. 93% ground turkey
  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Lettuce, kale, or cabbage for wraps
  • Extra veggies: sprouts, water chestnuts, cilantro, hot sauce, cabbage, cucumber, peanuts, or more
  1. Heat the sesame oil over medium high heat.
  2. Add the red onion, carrot, garlic, and ginger and cook for 3 minutes.
  3. Add the turkey and brown until cooked completely.
  4. Stir in the hoisin and tomato sauce. Cook for 2 more minutes.
  5. Turn off heat and squeeze in lime juice. Serve in lettuce wraps with your favorite toppings.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Peach Pork BBQ Sliders Topped with Apple Cole Slaw

I was looking for a unique slider recipe for our Super Bowl Party last weekend when I came across this Peach Pork BBQ Slider recipe from Eat At Home.  These were embarrassingly easy to make.  I was almost embarrassed to share the recipe with a friend who couldn't get enough of these tasty sliders.  I bought the spicy, smokey peach salsa from Trader Joe's. It was only 12 ounces but I think it did the trick.  I like to shred the pork in the slow cooker about an hour before I serve them.  They soak up the flavor and tend to be a little juicer.  Happy slow cooking!


For the Pork
  • 2 1/2 – 3 lbs. pork roast or tenderloin
  • 16 oz bottle barbecue sauce
  • 16 oz peach salsa
  1. Put all the ingredients in the slow cooker.
  2. Cook on high 5-6 hours or low for 7-8 hours.
  3. Shred cooked meat to serve.
For the Apple Cole Slaw
  • 16 oz bag cole slaw mix
  • handful chopped parsely
  • ​1 apple, chopped
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 Tbs. vinegar
  • 4 Tbs. sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Stir cole slaw mix, parsley and apple together.
  2. Put the remaining ingredients in a container with a tight fitting lid. Give it a good shake to combine.
  3. Pour dressing over slaw and toss.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Jalapeno Popper Cups

It's that time of year when I am combing through pinterest and my favorite blogs looking for my contributions for all the holiday get-togethers.  I was reminded of these jalapeno popper cups the other day.   My mom made these for a family get together and they were gone in a matter of minutes.  They are beyond easy to assemble and bake and oh so tasty!  Happy baking!



1 can (12 oz) Pillsbury® Grands!® Jr. Golden Layers® refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
1 can (4.5 oz) Old El Paso® chopped green chiles, drained
1/2  cup shredded Cheddar cheese (2 oz)                
1/3 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing                       
2 tablespoons cooked real bacon pieces (from 3- to 4.3-oz jar or package)
1 teaspoon dried minced onion
20  Old El Paso® pickled jalapeño slices (from 12-oz jar), drained


1.  Heat oven to 375°F. Separate each biscuit into 2 rounds. Press 1 round in bottom and up side of each of 20 ungreased mini muffin cups.
2.  In small bowl, mix remaining ingredients except jalapeño slices. Spoon heaping 1 teaspoon mixture into each cup; top each with 1 jalapeño slice.
3.  Bake 13 to 19 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Remove from pan to serving platter; let stand 5 minutes. Serve warm.