Where Cooking is Fun
We want cooking to be as fun for you as it is for us.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

I know, I know...the holidays are winding down...BUT we still have NEW YEARS! Actually...pumpkin recipes are made year round at my house, I refuse to just let them be a "holiday treat"....but having said that, THIS FABULOUS treat would go great on that New Year's Eve buffet table! I guarantee it will be a favorite for everyone and will disappear right before your very eyes (so be sure you make plenty!). One of our awesome viewers, Savannah (Here), made this recipe and shared it and I just couldn't help but try it out and give you a "heads up" on it. I was MORE THAN thrilled with it. I devoured more than my share, that's for sure! It's light and fluffy, creamy,delicious and DIVINE...I seriously recommend you MAKE AND EAT THIS...its definitely become one of my favorite treats ever!

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

2 c. crushed vanilla wafers ( I use graham crackers because I didn't have any Vanilla Wafers)
1/2 c. melted butter
4 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened
1 1/4 c. sugar
1 c. canned pumpkin
1/4 c. heavy whipping cream
3 T flour
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. ginger
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ground cloves
1/4 t. salt
1/4 t. vanilla
4 eggs
2 egg YOLKS

Topping:
1 c. pecans (I used walnuts)
2 c. heavy cream
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1/4 t. vanilla

Combine cookie crumbs and butter; press into a greased 9x13 baking pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 8-10 minutes. In a large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add pumpkin, cream, flour, spices, salt and vanilla. Mix well. Add the eggs and the YOLKS; beat on low until combined. Pour over prepared/cooked crust. Bake at 325 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until center is ALMOST set. Cool for 1 hour. Refrigerate for 3 hours before serving.

Topping: In a small mixing bowl, beat cream until thick and peaks form. Add sugar and vanilla. Beat until stiff. Spread over chilled cheesecake. Sprinkle with chopped nuts. Cut into bars and serve...IF there are any leftovers, keep them refrigerated.
*PS...doesn't hurt to hide a piece DEEP in the back of the fridge for yourself...TRUST me you'll want one at about midnight (and the pan will be empty by then)!

Happy Baking!
Julie~


Thursday, December 29, 2011

Grilled Caesar Salad


A few weekends ago some friends of ours invited us over for dinner. We ate the most delicious steaks and I was introduced to the deliciousness that is "Grilled Caesar Salad" I had never heard of it before, but after the first bite I knew I would be recreating it at home. This salad is AMAZING! Who would have thought grilling lettuce would actually be a thing. Drizzled with olive oil and topped with bacon. There's no way you can go wrong with that!

Grilled Caesar Salad

1 head of Romaine Lettuce
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup Caesar Salad Dressing
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup bacos

Wash lettuce and cut into 4ths. (leave the stem attached and everything) Sprinkle each section with 2 Tbsp. olive oil. Use a pastry brush to spread it around and get it into all the nooks and crannys. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on a hot grill and let cook until edges start to get crispy. (flipping occasionally). Remove from grill. Pour 1/4 cup dressing over lettuce and sprinkle with 2 Tbsp. Parmesan Cheese and 2 Tbsp. Bacos. Serve immediately.

~Dayna~

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Apple Raisin Cinnamon Muffins

Yes...another muffin recipe...but OH they are so good. This muffin recipe is packed full of apples and raisin's with a pop of cinnamon...these little bundles of joy are the perfect comfort food for breakfast!

Apple Raisin Cinnamon Muffins

1 large apple, cored and grated
2 egg whites
1 c. buttermilk
1 c. rolled oats
1 c. flour
1/2 c. raisins
1/4 c. honey
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1 1/2 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. salt

Spray muffin tin with cooking spray. Place buttermilk, raisins and oatmeal in a bowl, set aside. Whip egg whites (with an electric mixer) until they form a stiff peak. Add buttermilk mixture and honey to egg whites. Mix thoroughly. Add all dry ingredients and blend. Fold in grated apples. Spoon into prepared muffin tins and cook for 15-20 minutes or until muffin bounces back when touched. Serve with hot cereal for a complete breakfast.

Julie~

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins


A few days ago the Hubby came home with the ultimate compliment. One of his co-workers told him in passing that he refuses to eat anything at work unless I made it. Aw-- shucks! So of course I had to bake a few Christmas treats to send to work with him. Up first was a delicious Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin. Oh goodness. These were above and beyond any muffin I have ever tasted. The pumpkin base on it's own was amazing but adding a cream cheese center topped with a cinnamon streusel. I was blown away. This is officially my very favorite muffin ever! I wish I had kept a few at home to pig out on. These will absolutely become a staple at our house!

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Muffins:
3 cups flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
2 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
4 eggs
1 ¼ cups vegetable oil (I used peanut oil because that is what I had on hand)
2 cups sugar
2 cups pumpkin puree

Cream Cheese Filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar

Streusel topping:
½ cup sugar
¼ cup and 1 tsp. flour
4 tbsp. butter, cubed
1 ½ tsp. cinnamon


Combine the cream cheese and powdered sugar in a bowl and whip until smooth. Form into a log on plastic wrap or foil, making sure that the diameter is small enough to fit into the muffin pan. Wrap the log up tightly and freeze until slightly hardened, 1-2 hours. (I only left it in the freezer while I mixed up the muffins. It was still pretty soft so I used a spoon and plopped a little in each muffin center).

In a bowl combine the flour, spices, salt and baking soda. Mix well and set aside. In a separate bowl combine the eggs, oil, sugar and pumpkin puree. Mix until well combined. Add in the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until just combined.

To make the streusel topping, combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix together with a pastry blender or two forks until crumbly.

Preheat the oven to 350°. Line two muffin pans with paper liners. To assemble the muffins, fill each liner halfway with batter. Remove the cream cheese log from the freezer and slice into 24 equal slices. Place a slice in each muffin well. Divide the remaining muffin batter evenly among the muffin cups, on top of the cream cheese. Sprinkle the streusel topping over the top of the batter. Bake for 20 minutes. Let cool completely before serving.

~Dayna~

Monday, December 26, 2011

Apple Barbecue Pork Chops

Its the day after Christmas and I know your looking for and EASY DINNER recipe...if your cooking at all. These Apple Barbecue Pork Chops are so easy and taste like you've spent hours on dinner. They have a sweet, tangy taste that is sure to please everyone.

Apple Barbecue Pork Chops
8 boneless pork chops
2 T oil
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. barbecue sauce (your favorite brand)
1 can apple pie filling
honey

In a frying pan, brown pork chops in oil. Combine the remaining ingredients and pour over pork chops. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover. Simmer for 15 minutes or until done. Serve with steamed rice.
NOW that's WHAT I call EASY~

Julie~

Sunday, December 25, 2011

From our house to yours~

We here at Betterthanburgers.net, would like to wish you all a

VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!

We thank you for allowing us
to be part of your lives as well as your meal times.
We love to cook and are happy to be able to share
our recipes with so many wonderful friends.
May your day be filled with Christmas Spirit, surrounded with happy family and friends
and a lot of scrumptious food!
We love you all!
Have one of those WONDERFUL, FANTABULOUS KINDS OF DAYS!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you all,
Daynalee Ady and Julie Wilkerson

Friday, December 23, 2011

Blueberry Creme Brulee' French Toast

With Christmas in just a few days, cooking is something YOU DON'T want to think about...and with Christmas being on a SUNDAY this year, you may want something quick to eat so you have time to hustle off to church. This recipe is perfect...because you make it the night before and just pop it in the oven 30 minutes before you want to eat! IT is TO DIE FOR GOOD!!! This is seriously the very best french toast I've ever eaten!! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this Blueberry Creme Brulee' French Toast and I will be making it again and again and again...and NOT just for the holidays. Its definitely a little bit of heaven...give it a try, I bet you'll agree with me.

Blueberry Creme Brulee' French Toast
1/2 c butter
1 c. brown sugar
2 T corn syrup
1 loaf of dense bread, sliced (Texas Toast Bread...I used a loaf of homemade bread)
5 eggs
1 1/2 c. heavy cream
1/4 t. salt
1 t vanilla
1/2 t. cinnamon
1-2 can blueberry pie filling

In a small saucepan melt butter, brown sugar, and corn syrup over medium heat until smooth, stir constantly so it won't stick. Pour mixture into a greased 9x13 inch baking pan. Spread until bottom of pan is covered. Place 6 slices of bread in a single layer to cover bottom of pan. Mix together eggs, cream, salt, vanilla and cinnamon. Pour 1/2 the mixture into pan, covering each bread slice. Place 6 MORE slices of bread into pan (if you are NOT using Texas Toast Bread...since its already thick...if your using this bread, pour ALL of the mixture over bread as you won't need to layer another piece of bread) over the top of other bread slices, pour remaining mixture over bread, making sure to cover each piece. Cover and refrigerate over night. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Serve warm, topped with blueberry pie filling and whipped topping...its divine!!!
*YOU may want to make 2 pans...its really that good!!!

Julie~

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Grinch Punch


This is such a fun recipe to serve for kids, at Christmas parties or for a group of adults who just want to drink something fun. I served this at a girls night Christmas Party. We absolutely loved it and so will you.

Grinch Punch
2 Liters Sprite
Green Food Coloring
1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream

Pour Sprite into serving dish. Add food coloring. Stir slightly to combine color. Too much stirring will get rid of bubbles. Top with scoops of ice cream. Serve immediately.

~Dayna~

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Bacon Cream Cheese Jalapenos

It seems that parties are in full force this time of year. Between family, work and church activities, there is no shortage of yummy potluck dishes. These Bacon Cream Cheese Jalapenos are SO SIMPLE and taste SO GOOD. THEY were a huge hit at our party!!

Bacon Cream Cheese Jalapenos

fresh jalapenos
cream cheese, softened
bacon, sliced in half and cooked until crisp

Cut jalapenos in half, lengthwise. Remove seeds (use gloves if possible). Cut off a small piece of cream cheese (enough to fill the pepper) and place in the jalapeno. Top with a piece of bacon. Place all stuffed jalapenos on a large baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Serve immediately.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

M&M Cookies



The Hubby and I completely disagree about junk food. He would rather over eat on cheeseburgers and fries. I want to indulge in anything sugar. Oh delicious sugar. So it was no surprise that I fell in love with these cookies. I ate almost all of the dough before the cookies were even done. One piece of dough on the sheet, two pieces in my mouth. Yum! After all was said and done even Hubby ate more than his fair share of these delicious cookies. I promise they do not dissapoint.

-blogger is not letting me hyperlink to the recipe. =( Here's the blog I found the recipe on.
http://www.howsweeteats.com/2011/07/giant-rainbow-cookies/


M&M Cookies

2 cups + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 sticks of salted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup m&m’s

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Mix the flour and baking soda in a bowl and set aside. In another bowl, mix the butter and sugars until they are combined. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla and stir until mixed. Gradually add flour and mix until a dough forms. Use your hands to help combine ingredients. Add m&ms.

Separate into balls and bake for 8-10 minutes.

*After making the dough it was too soft--- I threw it in the fridge for 10-15 minutes and then made cookies with it. It worked perfectly.

~Dayna~

Monday, December 19, 2011

White Chocolate Pumpkin Cups

These delicious little treats have quickly become a HUGE favorite of mine...which is strange because I am not a white chocolate lover, but these are DIVINE. I think I ate more than my share of them when I made them...oh well, its Christmas and I am entitled to indulge...just a little. They make a delicious treat for a potluck dish or just a yummy treat to eat while you watch all those wonderful Christmas shows you've been dying to see. THESE little bites are fabulous!!

White Chocolate Pumpkin Cups

2 packages of good quality white chocolate chips
1 T shortening
1/4 c. cream cheese, softened
1/4 c. pumpkin puree
3/4 t. cinnamon
3/4 t. ginger
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 t. ground cloves
1/4 t. allspice
1 t. vanilla
1/4 c. powdered sugar
1 c. finely crushed graham crackers crumbs
sprinkles for topping


Spray mini muffin tin with cooking spray. Melt white chocolate chips and shortening in the top of a double boiler. Stir constantly to keep from burning. Turn heat on low when completely melted.
Place about 1 teaspoon of melted chocolate in prepared muffin tins, making sure to cover the bottom of each cup. The chocolate should be thick. Place muffin tin into the freezer for 15 minutes or until chocolate is completely set. In a medium bowl combine cream cheese, pumpkin, spices and the vanilla. Beat until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and stir until combined. Stir in the graham cracker crumbs. Roll mixture into small balls, enough to fill the muffin cups. Place one ball in each cup, smash down slightly. Cover with melted white chocolate, making sure the chocolate covers the sides as to seal the cup. Top with sprinkles. Chill. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Julie~

Friday, December 16, 2011

Mindy's Spinach Dip

If you like spinach you're going to love this recipe. Its easy and so tasty. My sister-in-law has been making this for years. Its a huge hit in my family. Its great served with veggies or with crackers....and I've even eaten it with corn chips.

Mindy's Spinach Dip

2 boxes frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
2 c. mayonnaise (THE REAL STUFF)
1/2 bottle chives
2 T. Accent (purchase it at most stores, its by the seasonings)
1 T. pepper

Mix all ingredient together. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Julie~

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Bacon wrapped Little Smokies


A few weeks ago I threw a super fun girls night. Complete with games, crafts and FOOD! Im not lying when I tell you the food was DIVINE! I threw together a few Better Than Burgers favorites and tried a few new recipes. One of the new recipes I found here and knew it HAD to go on the menu. They were the first to go and everyone fought to get the last bite. These were SO good. I easily could have sat in front of this plate all night. I promise these will be the first to go at your parties too!

Bacon wrapped Little Smokies

1 package Little Smokies
1 package bacon
1/3 cup brown sugar

Preheat oven to 325. Cut bacon into 3rds. Now you have LOTS of smaller slices of bacon. wrap 1 slice around a little smokie and secure with tooth pick. Continue until ingredients are gone. Sprinkle brown sugar over sausages and bake for 40-45 minutes or until bacon has cooked. Serve.

~Dayna~

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Chicken Wings with Mock Winger Sauce

I have 2 fathers, 4 brothers, 4 sons and a hubby that love chicken wings. I've never had much luck getting them to eat the "regular buffalo wings" that I've made in the past, BUT THESE...that's another story. I made them for a family get together and before I even got to taste one, the ENTIRE plate of these tasty wings had disappeared....not even a crumb was left for this poor church mouse to nibble on. GUESS that means they liked them?! I will have to say that they "smelled" really good, they "looked" delicious...and from the smiles on the faces of those satisfied boys and men, I would have to say they were scrumptious.

Chicken Wings with Mock Winger Sauce

1 large bag of chicken wings, cooked according to package directions (I cooked mine in the oven)

Sauce:
4 1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. + 4 T. water
1 c. + 2 T. "Franks" Hot Sauce (it has to be this brand)

Combine brown sugar, water and hot sauce in a medium sized pan. Stir continually to keep from sticking. Bring to a boil. Boil for 3 minutes. Place cooked chicken wings in a large baking pan (9x13 or bigger, depending on the amount of chicken wings you have). Pour sauce over chicken wings and bake at 350 degrees in the oven for 10-15 minutes (so flavors can marry). Serve and enjoy!

Julie~

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Peanut Butter Pretzel Brownies

These brownies are a fun way to combine your peanut butter and chocolate craving all in one BIG DOSE! The pretzels add a delicious crunch to these amazingly scrumptious brownies!

Peanut Butter Pretzel Brownies
Brownie:
1 cube butter
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
4 oz. semi sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3/4 c. sugar
3 eggs
1 t. vanilla
2/3 c. flour
1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt

Peanut butter topping:
4 T butter, melted
1/2 c. powdered sugar
3/4 c. creamy peanut butter
1/4 t. salt
1/2 t. vanilla

Pretzels, crushed coarsely (you don't want crumbs)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease an 8x8 baking dish.

In a bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan combine, butter, unsweetened chocolate, semi sweet chocolate and vanilla. Stir until melted. Turn off heat. Cool slightly and whisk in sugar until well combined. Next add eggs one at a time and stir until sell combined. Add flour mixture and stir. Pour evenly into prepared pan.

To make Peanut butter topping:
Beat together melted butter, powdered sugar, peanut butter, vanilla and salt until smooth. Pour over top of brownie batter and use a butter knife to swirl the two together.

Sprinkle crushed pretzels on top of peanut butter topping and bake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes. Let cool. Cut into squares. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a wonderful treat!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Pumpkin Maple Bars

I love pumpkin, that's no secret...and these Pumpkin Maple Bars are DIVINE! THEY are "melt in your mouth" fabulous! I seriously couldn't get enough of them. I don't know if its the maple flavor or the moist pumpkin that got me hooked, but I am SOOOO hooked! I will definitely be making these for Christmas!!

Pumpkin Maple Bars
2 c. flour
2 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 t. salt
1 T cinnamon
1 t. ground nutmeg
1 t. ground ginger
1 (29 oz) can pumpkin
1 2/3 c. sugar
3/4 c. oil
3 eggs
1 t. maple extract
3/4 c. chopped walnuts


Frosting:
3 c. powdered sugar
1/2 c. butter, softened
12 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 t. maple extract
Extra chopped nuts for topping

Place all dry ingredients in a large bowl, stir and set aside. Mix pumpkin, sugar, oil, eggs and maple extract with an electric mixer. Add dry ingredients slowly to pumpkin mixture. Chop walnuts and fold them in to mixture. Grease (2) 9x13 inch baking pans and divide the batter evenly between the two pans. Spread until bottom of pans are completely covered. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until maple bars bounce back when touched. Cool bars completely before frosting.

For Frosting:
Mix butter and cream cheese on medium speed for 2-3 minutes or until smooth. Add maple extract. Slowly add powdered sugar and mix low. Increase the speed as the powdered sugar gets blended in. Mix for 1-2 minutes...do not over mix. Spread frosting on COOLED bars. Top with extra nuts. Cut into bars. Serve. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

I KNOW you're going to LOVE these!!
Julie~

Friday, December 9, 2011

Bacon Cheese Avocado Egg Rolls

Egg rolls aren't just filled with cabbage and carrots...we fill ours with so many different things. These Bacon Cheese Avocado Egg Rolls were a hit. Everyone loved them. Dip them in ranch or eat them as they are, either way they are delicious! They make a great main course or a side dish with your favorite Chinese meal.


Bacon Cheese Avocado Egg Rolls

10 Egg roll wraps
1-2 lb bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 cup mozzarella cheese
2-3 avocado, diced


Cook bacon till crispy. In an egg roll wrap arrange about 1 T bacon, 1 T cheese, several pieces of avocado. Fold, egg roll style (instructions on package). Repeat until all egg roll wraps are filled. Place all egg rolls on a greased baking sheet. Spray wraps with cooking spray. Bake at 425 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until slightly browned. Be careful as to not OVERCOOK egg rolls or they will be dry. Serve with ranch if desired.

Julie~

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Caesar Salad Wrap

Remember that yummy Caesar Salad Dressing I posted just the other day?....Well, pair it up with this dandy recipe and you will be loving dinner tonight! One of the things that I love about wraps is you can put just about anything in between a flour shell, call it a wrap and its delish!! This Caesar Salad Wrap reminds me of everything summer, but it can be eaten year round. I love the light, snappy taste that the dressing gives to this fabulous wrap and I am sure you will too. Eat up and Enjoy a little bit of summer food during these cold winter days!

Caesar Salad Wrap
Makes 4 wraps~

2 chicken breast, cubed and grilled (or cooked any way you like it)
Romaine lettuce (I actually prefer the red leaf lettuce)
Caesar Salad Dressing
1 c. fresh grated Parmesan Cheese
1 c. Monterrey Jack cheese (or cheddar)
4 flour tortillas
(I love the ones that are not cooked, that you have to cook yourself...but any will do)
sliced olives
diced tomatoes

Cook tortilla shells, (even if they have been cooked before, warm them...they are easier to wrap)
Layer cooked meat, lettuce, cheese and dressing into shells. Top with tomatoes and olives if desired. Wrap and EAT...its that simple.

Julie~

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Caesar Salad Dressing

(Sorry for the lack of a desirable picture...the ingredient in this dressing kept separating before I could take the picture.)

Chicken Caesar Salad is one of our favorites around these parts. Its great in the spring, summer, the fall and YES, even the winter. Its great anytime. This delicious dressing is so tasty, you'll end up serving it on more than just "Chicken Caesar Salad"...you'll serve it with EVERY SALAD. It stores easily in the refrigerator and will last for up to 3 weeks.

Best Ever Caesar Salad Dressing

Combine and process in a food processor or blender.

2 cloves garlic, minced
1 c. mayonnaise (the REAL stuff)
1 t. Dijon mustard
1/2 t. dry mustard powder
3 T red wine vinegar
2 t. Worcestershire sauce
3/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredient thoroughly. Then add (in a thin stream while still processing):

1/4 c. canola or olive oil

Process until mixture is WELL blended.

Serve with Chicken Caesar Salad OR my favorite...Chicken Caesar Salad Wraps (recipe coming soon).

Julie~

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Raspberry Slush



I love making delicious recipes that people ooh and aah over. I especially love when they gush and I smile-- secretly knowing that I threw it together in literally less than 3 minutes. That's exactly what we have with this delicious slush recipe. Add a few garnishes and you'll have everyone at your parties begging for the recipe.

Raspberry Slush

1/2 gallon Raspberry Sherbet
2 Liters Sprite
Lemons and Limes for garnish

Let your sherbet soften on the counter while you slice your lemons and limes. Pour Sprite into bowl or serving pitcher. Top with scoops of raspberry sherbet. Sprinkle with lemons and limes for garnish and serve.

~Dayna~

Monday, December 5, 2011

Vanilla Muffins

I love the smell of these muffins baking in the oven bright and early in the morning. Serve them with a bowl of cereal or along side of your eggs and bacon, either way you will enjoy their rich vanilla flavor.

Vanilla Muffins

4 c. flour
2 c. sugar
1 T plus 2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
2 c. milk
2 eggs
1 T vanilla extract
8 T butter, melted

In a large bowl combine milk, eggs, melted butter and vanilla. Whisk until well blended. Add all dry ingredient and stir until combined. Spoon mixture into greased (or paper lined) muffin tins and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Serve hot with a slab of butter.

Julie~

Friday, December 2, 2011

Beef Tostadas

Growing up, my second to the oldest child was a huge fan of Tostadas. He adored them and asked me to make them weekly. Since he's left the nest and gotten married, we don't have them very often...but I don't know why, because we all enjoy them and they are so easy to make. SO the other night I whipped up a batch of them and we basked in their "yumminess"! Can't beat a great Mexican dish if you ask me!

Beef Tostadas

1 lb ground beef
1 package taco seasoning
1 c. enchilada sauce
1 can refried beans
1 can black beans
tostada shells
sour cream
diced avocado
diced onion
shredded cheese

In a large skillet, cook beef until browned. Add taco seasoning and stir until well blended. Cook until beef is completely done, add enchilada sauce and stir (beef mixture should be thick but not soupy). Set aside. Spread tostada shell with a spoonful (or so) of refried beans. Add ground beef, black beans, cheese, tomato, onion and avocado. Top with a dollop of sour cream. Serve and enjoy!

Julie~

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Peanut Butter Wrap



I'm usually a cereal kind of breakfast girl. I hate getting up early enough to cook something. But lately I've been needing a little more substance in my breakfast routine. I found a similar recipe on the flat-out bread website and decided to fit it in to my morning routine. This wrap is AMAZING. I was expecting it to taste fine but I really enjoyed this. I have made it many times for breakfast AND lunch. It's something different that anyone can enjoy.

Peanut Butter Wrap

1 flat out wrap
2 Tbsp. peanut butter
1 Tbsp. granola
1/2 cup strawberries

Spread peanut butter on wrap. Sprinkle granola and strawberries down the center. Roll and enjoy.

~Dayna~

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Oreo Dessert

It seems that during the holidays we eat more desserts than we do any other time of the year...its just part of the fun. This is one of my favorites (yes, I have many favorites), its light and fluffy and full of YUM!!! Give it a try, I know you'll like it too.

*One of the nice things about this recipe is you COULD (I didn't) use sugar free pudding as well as sugar free whipped topping to cut calories.

Oreo Dessert
3 c. cold milk
4 (3.9 oz) INSTANT chocolate pudding mix
20 oz carton frozen whipped topping

1 package Double Stuff Oreo's

In a mixing bowl, beat the milk and pudding mix for 2 minutes. Beat in whip topping until well blended. Break Oreo's into pieces...you want chunks not crumbs. Layer pudding mixture and Oreo's in dessert cups until cup is full. Top with Oreo's and a dollop of whipped topping if desired.
Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Julie~

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Apple Pecan Chicken Salad



There's nothing that says "chick food" to me more than chicken salad. So this recipe was a no brainer to bring to a "chick" gathering. These were gobbled up so fast I hardly had any leftovers.


Apple Pecan Chicken Salad

2 cups canned chicken
1/2 cup pecans
1 apple (diced)
1/2 cup craisins
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1 tsp. rosemarry

In a bowl combine chicken, pecans, apple and craisins. In a small bowl mix mayo, vinegar and rosemarry. Combine with dry ingredients and mix. Season with salt and pepper. Chill until ready to serve.

~Dayna~

Monday, November 28, 2011

Crock Pot Italian Beef Sandwiches

I have to say that this is one of the EASIEST meals that I have ever made. It's the kind you throw in the crock pot first thing in the morning and forget about until dinner time. I love those kinds of meals. It's not only easy, but DELICIOUS TOO! The Italian flavoring is just right...not too strong...not to mild. These Italian Beef Sandwiches are definitely a crowd pleaser, men, women and children will leave the table full and happy because dinner was amazing! Can't beat that!

Crock Pot Italian Beef Sandwiches
3 lbs boneless beef (roast or steaks...I used Flank Steak)
3/4 c. water
1 packet DRY Italian salad dressing
2 t. dried Italian seasoning
1/2 t. ground red pepper
1 t. garlic powder
Hoagie buns or any sandwich bun
butter
sliced provolone cheese

In a bowl or cup, combine water and all seasonings. Stir well. Place beef in crock pot and pour mixture over the beef. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or until beef is falling apart. When beef falls apart, shred with two forks (leaving the meat in the crock pot) and let it soak up the juices.

Butter the inside of the buns and place them face down in a frying pan. Lightly brown. Remove buns from pan. Place desired amount of meat on your bun along with 2 slices of provolone cheese. Add any other toppings that you desire (sliced onions, peppers, saute'd mushroom etc...)
Serve with potato salad or chips....or anything that sounds good to you.

Julie~

Friday, November 25, 2011

Cheesy Cauliflower Soup

After a BIG Thanksgiving meal yesterday, a yummy warm soup will hit the spot today. I love soup....especially creamy or cheesy soups...for some reason, they have "comfort food" written all over them. This soup is perfect for a cold day, wrapped up in a blanket with a good book or movie on the television.....which makes it perfect for today since you need a break from all the holiday cooking. This Cheesy Cauliflower Soup is full of rich, smooth, cheesy goodness!! Its definitely on my list of FAVORITE soups! I'm sure after you give it a try, it will be on yours too.

Cheesy Cauliflower Soup
1-2 heads cauliflower, chopped (not into small pieces..you want it chunky)
9 c. water
2-3 T bouillon granules
1 cube butter
1 t. onion powder
1 c. flour
2 c. heavy cream
2 c. shredded cheddar cheese (don't use the PRE-shredded cheese, it will make your soup go grainy... shred it fresh)
16 oz. Velveeta (not generic, it doesn't melt creamy like Velveeta does)

In a large sauce pan, bring water to a boil. Add bouillon granules and cauliflower. Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes. In a frying pan, melt butter. Add onion powder and flour, stir to form a thick paste. Add cream and whisk until thick and smooth. Add cream mixture to the cauliflower mixture. Leave heat on low-medium and add shredded cheese and Velveeta, stirring constantly until melted. DO NOT bring soup to a boil after adding the cheese, as this will curdle your cheese's and make your soup grainy and nasty. Keep soup on a low heat until cheese is completely melted. Serve immediately. Serve in bread bowls, if desired (I prefer mine that way), OR in a bowl, topped with shredded cheese. Mmmmmm!!!!

Julie~

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving


BetterThanBurgers.org wants to wish each of you a very Happy Thanksgiving. We hope your day is full of delicious food, but most of all we hope you are surrounded by those you love. On this celebratory day we are truly grateful for each of you. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

Daynalee Ady and Julie Wilkerson

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Lemon Cheesecake Bars

Cheesecake and me go WAAAAAYYYY BACK....I think I was born LOVING IT! SO if I see a recipe that has the word "Cheesecake" in the title, I am bound to give it a try (unless it has "Cherry" involved in it...then its pretty much a NO GO). When I found this recipe I went right to the store to purchase everything I needed to whip a batch right up. I was THRILLED with the end result. These Lemon Cheesecake Bars were to die for...really and truly I might give my left arm for one...well, maybe just a toe, but still...they were so delicious and tasty that I had to hide them from myself to keep from eating more than I should. They would make a great dessert any day but especially for the holidays.........guess you better run to the store and grab everything you need so you can whip up a batch for the big Thanksgiving holiday tomorrow.

Lemon Cheesecake Bars
Crust:
1 1/2 c. flour
1/2 powdered sugar
3/4 c. butter, cut into cubes

Mix together flour and powdered sugar. Cut in cold butter with a knife of pastry blender until mixture resembles crumbs. Press into the bottom of a greased 9x13" pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-17 minutes. Remove from oven, set aside.

Lemon filling:
4 eggs
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 T. flour
1 T lemon zest (I didn't use this because I didn't have any...use if you have)
1/2 c. lemon juice

Whisk together all ingredient. Pour onto prepared cooked crust. Skim off any bubbles that form on the surface of the lemon filling.

Cheesecake filling:
2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened
1 c. sugar
2 eggs, beaten

Mix the cream cheese and sugar into a bowl until well blended. Beat in eggs, then spread over the lemon mixture. The lemon and cheesecake mixture will separate during the baking process.

Topping:
1 1/2 c. graham crackers crumbs
1/3 c. sugar
6 T. butter, melted

Combine all ingredient together with a fork. Sprinkle on top of cheesecake mixture.

Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until the filling is set. Cool completely. Cut and serve. Refrigerate leftovers (if there are any).

Julie~

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Ultimate Chili Cheese Dip


We're a huge fan of Chili and Cream cheese dip around here so when I saw a recipe that expanded on this family favorite I immediately bought the ingredients. You can't go wrong with this cheesy goodness. Definitely one of my new favorites!

Ultimate Chili Cheese Dip

8 oz cream cheese
8 oz velveeta cheese
1 can chili
2 Tbsp. milk

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and cook on medium until hot and bubbly. Serve with chips. (Doritos are my favorite!)

*Could also be prepared in the microwave-- combine all ingredients and cook for 5-6 minutes. Stirring occasionally.

~Dayna~

Monday, November 21, 2011

Pumpkin Pie Bars

I LOVE pumpkin pie and these bars are even BETTER! The spices, the texture, the taste...everything about these Pumpkin Pie Bars will make your mouth water for more! They are FANTABULOUS!!!

Pumpkin Pie Bars
1 1/3 c. flour
1/2 c. brown sugar
3/4 c. white sugar, divided
3/4 c. cold butter
1 c. oatmeal
1/2 c. chopped walnuts
1 8 oz cream cheese, softened
3 eggs
1-15 oz canned pumpkin
1 t. cinnamon
1 t. ground ginger
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 t. ground cloves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 glass baking pan with cooking spray.

Combine flour, brown sugar, 1/4 c. white sugar and mix well. Add butter; using a pastry blender (or 2 knives) cut in mixture until it looks like coarse crumbs. Stir in oatmeal and walnuts. Reserve 1 cup mixture. Press remaining mixture in the bottom of the prepared pan.

In a bowl, beat together softened cream cheese, 1/2 c. sugar, eggs, pumpkin and spices until well blended. Pour and spread over entire crust. Sprinkle with reserved oatmeal mixture. Bake for 35-40 minutes. Cool completely. I put mine in the refrigerator so they would set up quicker and completely. Cut into bars. Store in the refrigerator.

YOU WILL LOVE THESE!!!!!
Julie~

Friday, November 18, 2011

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Spread

I made this DIVINE spread for crepes, but you could put it on just about anything...its very versatile. I think its a must for every holiday table...maybe even spread over a Cinnamon Raisin Bagel for breakfast...mmmmmmm!! This delicious spread is so easy, but tastes like a delicacy and it won't take you long to become addicted!

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Spread
8 oz. cream cheese, softened (makes it much easier to mix)
6 T brown sugar
4 T maple syrup
1/2 c. canned pumpkin
1 t. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. vanilla

In a small bowl combine cream cheese, brown and syrup. Mix until creamy. Add pumpkin, vanilla and spices. Beat until smooth. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour (I didn't do this...we just ate it and it was wonderful!).

Julie~

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Little Smoky Kabobs



Jack and I joke all the time about the delicious food that we served at our wedding reception that we never got to eat. These Kabobs were on the menu and they sure did go fast. They are the perfect combination of sweet, salty and delicious. Every simple ingredients blends perfectly to make one of my very favorite appetizers.

Little Smoky Kabobs

1 package Little Smokies
1 can pineapple chunks
Cheese Chunks

Assemble one of each ingredient on to a toothpick. Refrigerate until served. How easy is that?!?!

~Dayna~

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Ribbon Pumpkin Bread

Tis the season of pumpkin at our house. I love EVERYTHING pumpkin, it doesn't really matter what it is, if its pumpkin it becomes a favorite of mine. This Ribbon Pumpkin Bread is delicious~ BUT don't take my word for it...try it yourself!

Ribbon Pumpkin Bread
8 oz. reduced-fat cream cheese
1/4 c. sugar
1 T flour
2 egg whites

Batter:
1 c. pumpkin
1/2 c. unsweetened applesauce
1 egg
2 egg whites
1 T oil
1 2/3 c. flour
1 1/4 c. sugar
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ground cloves
1/3 c. chopped walnuts

1. For filling, combine the cream cheese, sugar, flour and egg whites in a bowl; mix well and set aside. In a separate mixing bowl, beat the pumpkin, applesauce, egg, egg whites and oil. Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and cloves, add to the pumpkin mixture. Stir in walnuts.

2. Divide half of the batter between two loaf pans coated with cooking spray. Spread each with cream cheese filling; top with remaining batter.

3. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes (start checking at 40 minutes...mine was done at about 47 minutes) or when toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely. Refrigerate leftovers.

*Makes 2 loaves (14 slices per loaf).
Two slices equals: 107 calories
3g fat
1g saturated fat
11mg cholesterol
116mg sodium
19g carbohydrate
1g fiber
3g protein

Enjoy!!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Lasagna Soup

Lasagna doesn't sound like it could possibly be eaten as a soup...but trust me IT CAN! I made it for dinner last night and couldn't have been happier with the way that it turned out. It has quickly became a family favorite and will be eaten frequently at our house. Its sweet zesty Italian flavor just makes your mouth water. ENJOY!

Lasagna Soup
1 lb ground beef
1 clove garlic, minced
1 t. thyme
1-2 T brown sugar (to taste...I think I used 1 1/2 T)
1 (32 oz) box chicken broth
2 (14.5 oz) can petite diced tomatoes with chilies, pureed in your blender
(if you want a little zip...use regular without chilies if your family doesn't like a little spice)
2 t. Italian seasoning
1/2 t. salt
3 T grated Parmesan cheese
2 c. broken lasagna noodles (you want bigger pieces, not crumbs), cooked and drained
2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese ( I used cheddar because I didn't have mozzarella)
cottage cheese or sour cream

In a large skillet, brown ground beef and garlic. When meat is done, stir in thyme, brown sugar, canned tomatoes (that have been pureed), broth, Italian seasoning and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Add COOKED noodles and simmer for 7 more minutes. Stir in Parmesan cheese. Top with a dollop of cottage cheese (sounds weird but its DELISH...if you like cottage cheese in your lasagna, you will love this too) OR sour cream...and some shredded cheese. Serve with garlic toast for a complete yummy meal!!

Julie~

Monday, November 14, 2011

Crock pot Smokey Italian Chicken

I love crock pot meals, especially during the fall and winter months...the smells of dinner just permeates the house and I can't wait for dinner time to come around. I whipped up this little dinner dish the other night and it was a huge HIT. My hubby adored it and said it was right there at the top of his favorite things that I have ever made. Its got just a hint of the smokey flavor that comes from the bacon and just enough of the creamy taste to satisfy everyone's taste buds! This recipe is not only DELISH, but its easy to make as well. Put this in your crock pot just before church and you'll come home to dinner pretty much done. Hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

Crock Pot Smokey Italian Chicken
4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breast (frozen or thawed...frozen just takes longer to cook)
1 can cream chicken soup
1 8oz cream cheese
1 package dry Italian dressing
1 lb bacon, cut into small pieces

Cooked noodles or rice or baked potatoes (to serve chicken over when its done cooking)

Combine first 5 ingredient together in a crock pot. Cook on low for 4-5 hours, if your meat is thawed, cook for 6-7 hours if its frozen. Shred chicken in the crock pot with two forks before serving. Serve over cooked noodles, rice or a baked potato. Enjoy!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Julie's Red Burrito's

When my children were growing up I used to make homemade burrito's...after all... we LOVE Mexican food at my house. These are quick and easy and taste delish! Serve them with a plate of rice or a side of tortilla chips. Can't beat that for easy and scrumptious!

Julie's Red Burrito's
1 bag home style tortilla shells
1 lb. ground beef, cooked and drained
1 can refried beans
1/2 package taco seasoning
1 large can red enchilada sauce (any brand you like)
2-3 c. grated cheese
Oil

Warm tortilla shells in the microwave for 30 seconds...this makes it easier to roll them when the time comes. Place refried beans in a microwave safe dish and warm for 2-3 minutes. Stir taco seasoning in with warm beans. Place a spoonful of refried beans down the center of tortilla shell. Repeat with a spoonful of ground beef and some cheese. Roll shell, folding both ends and then rolling like a burrito. Continue until you have the desired amount of burritos that you want. Heat enough oil to cover the bottom of a frying pan (I use my large electric frying pan and turn the temperature to 375). Place rolled burrito's in pan with HOT oil. Cook on medium high (if your using your stove top) 1-2 minutes on each side or until each side is browned and crispy. Pour enchilada sauce over the top and cover for 1 minute. Turn heat down, top with cheese and cover for 1 more minute. Serve.

Julie~

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Taco Bravos


I love the switch of Daylights savings time in the fall. I love everything except the quality of pictures I get. My dining room chandelier just doesn't compare. BUT, no matter how bad the picture is this quick recipe speaks for itself. It is by far my favorite way to eat a taco. Yum! I honestly don't know what you would call these, but growing up someone coined the name Taco Bravo's and the title stuck. Regardless of the name these tacos are absolutely delicious. I'm sure you'll think so too.

Taco Bravos

6 soft taco shells
6 hard taco shells
1 lb hamburger
taco seasoning packet
1 can refried beans
cheese
lettuce
tomatoes
ketchup
sour cream


Brown hamburger in a pan. Sprinkle with taco seasoning and let simmer. Set aside. Warm refried beans. To assemble, cover your soft taco shell with refried beans. Set hard taco shell in the center and fold soft taco up the sides. Fill hard taco with meat, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and top with ketchup and sour cream.

~Dayna~

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Breakfast Cups


These Breakfast Cups are a fun way to make ham and eggs. My kids love them and ask me to make them quite often. You can use scrambled eggs or just one cracked open right into the ham like you see in the picture, either way works great. Give them a try...its a great way to start the morning.

Breakfast Cups

6 eggs
6 pieces of thin sliced deli ham
shredded cheese
salt/pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray muffin tin with cooking spray. Place one slice of ham into muffin tin, forming a "bowl". Sprinkle small amount of cheese on the bottom of each "bowl". Crack one egg into each cup (or pour in one beat egg for a "scrambled egg"). Add salt and pepper and more cheese if desired. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until egg is fully cooked.
Serve with toast and juice for a hearty breakfast.

Julie~