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

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Challenge...

Some difficult challenges have faced me this week. I am in a hard place right now and so I am taking a little time off from cooking which means I am taking a little time off from blogging as well. I hope that in a weeks time I can pull myself back together and get back to life, but for now...I need to take a "pause" in life. Please check out the many fabulous recipes that are already posted and enjoy a week, a month or even a years worth of menu's made up from what we have posted on our blog. Thank you for being understanding and such wonderful fans of "Better Than Burgers". Happy Cooking...but most of all "Happy Eating!"

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Breakfast Egg and Bacon Grilled Cheese

Often times at our house, breakfast is an "eat on the go" meal for one or more people. I like to find things that make it a little easier for me to make this possible. I made this fabulous breakfast sandwich, it's easy to eat on the run and tastes delish!!

Breakfast Egg and Bacon Grilled Cheese
8 slices heavy bread (the "more expensive" bread/deli/homemade)
4 slices pepper jack cheese
1/2 lb cooked, crumbled bacon (divided into 4 equal portions)
8 eggs, scrambled and cooked (divided into 4 equal portions)
butter 

Spread butter on one side of each slice of bread. Place butter side of ONE slice of bread down (you will have a TOP and a BOTTOM piece) in a HOT frying pan. Place 1 slice of cheese, 1/4 of the scrambled eggs, 1/4 of the bacon crumbles....top with another slice of buttered bread, with buttered side facing up. Cook until desired "brown-ness" (for lack of a better way to describe it) occurs, turn over and repeat on other side. Repeat with each sandwich. Serve hot!

Julie~

Monday, November 4, 2013

Easy Cheeseburger Burrito

EASY is one of my favorite words to explain a meal...that means that 
it cuts out 1/2 the stress in making it. This is the perfect meal for lunch when the kids 
are home or a quick dinner...no fuss, tastes great, everyone smiles! (especially the cook!)

Easy Cheeseburger Burrito
1 lb. ground beef, cooked and drained
1/2 package taco seasoning (or more if you like more)

Cook meat, adding taco seasoning. Cook until done. Drain grease. Set aside.

2 c. grated cheddar cheese
6-8 flour tortillas

Warm each tortilla in the microwave (individually) for 15 seconds. Sprinkle cooked meat over each warmed tortilla shell. Top with grated cheese. Roll. Fry in a frying pan with a small amount of oil. Turning as each side is browned. Place on plate. When eating top with your favorite "cheeseburger" toppings: lettuce, tomato, avocado, onion, bleu cheese, mushrooms etc...whatever you like on a burger will make this "cheeseburger burrito" the BEST it CAN be! 

Julie~

Friday, November 1, 2013

Julie's Sweet and Sour Pork Chops


Pork chops...a very dull and boring meal if you ask me...UNTIL you jazz it
up a bit! These tasty Sweet and Sour Pork Chops have a little "asian" flare to 
them and taste DIVINE! They aren't your typical "meat and potato" dish that men crave, 
BUT its a "meat and rice" dish that they will ask for time and time again~
Mmmmmmmmmmm!!


Julie's Sweet and Sour Pork Chops
4 pork chops, (bone in or bone out)
Seasonings: garlic powder, onion powder, pepper, season salt

Brown each pork chops for 4-5 minutes on each side. Season with seasoning (as much or little as you desire). Place BROWNED pork chops in small baking dish. Pour sweet and sour sauce over the top. Bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve with steamed rice. We liked our sauce over the rice too.
Sweet and Sour Sauce:
1 1/3 c. vinegar
1 3/4 c. sugar
1 3/4 c. catsup
2 1/4 c. COLD water
7 T. cornstarch
2 1/3 T. salt

Add all ingredient into a medium saucepan. Cook on medium high, stir continually until thickened. *sauce will get a "shiny" look to it as it thickens.

Julie~

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Julie's Crab and Cream Cheese Egg Rolls

Here's a  little "switch up" to your old stand-by, run of the mill, every day egg roll! 
I ADORE these Crab and Cream Cheese Egg Rolls...ONE of my favorite foods!

Crab and Cream Cheese Egg Rolls
2 packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. grated monterey jack cheese
3 T. lime juice...NOT lemon
1 lb. imitation crab, shredded (use your fingers and tear apart or you can cut it)
1/4 t. cayenne pepper (more or less depending on your taste)
1/2 lb. cooked CRISPY bacon, crumbled and drained (NOT BACON BITS...use the REAL stuff)

Combine all ingredient except bacon into a mixing bowl. Mix with a mixer until well blended. Place a spoonful of filling down the center of the egg roll wrap. Fold according to package instructions, moistening the edges with water and pressing to seal shut. Heat oil to 350 degrees. Fry the egg rolls until they are golden brown, about 45 seconds to 1 minute. Drain well on a paper towel.

"hen hau fan" (means "very good food" in chinese)
Okay...its not "real" chinese food...but hey, an egg roll can be called good in any language, right?!?!

Julie~

Monday, October 28, 2013

Julie's Sweet and Sour Hawaiian Haystacks


 THESE Sweet and Sour Hawaiian Haystacks are a fun, light, scrumptious dinner that is FAST and EASY! They were so good and I LOVED them so much that I could have eaten them 2 or 3 times in the same week, but I refrained from it...thought I would hold off as to not make everyone sick of them. A definite hit at our house, I'm guessing they will be at your's too!


Julie's Sweet and Sour Hawaiian Haystacks 

6 cups steamed rice (brown or white...whatever you like, we like white)
3 c. cooked, boneless chicken (I used boiled chicken breast...use what you like)
1 can pineapple tidbits, drained
2 small cans mandarin oranges, drained
slivered almonds
grated cheese
coconut
sweet and sour sauce (recipe below)

*almonds, cheese and coconut amounts are "as desired"

Sweet and Sour Sauce:
1 1/3 c. vinegar
1 3/4 c. sugar
1 3/4 c. catsup
2 1/4 c. COLD water
7 T. cornstarch
2 1/3 T. salt

Add all ingredient into a medium saucepan. Cook on medium high, stir continually until thickened. *sauce will get a "shiny" look to it as it thickens. Serve. 

Place desired amount of rice (per one person serving) in a bowl. Add chicken, pineapple, oranges, almonds, coconut and grated cheese. Top with sweet and sour sauce. ENJOY!

Julie~

Friday, October 25, 2013

Biscuit Panini

This breakfast sandwich is and EASY "sit down and eat" breakfast or a "eat on the run"
kind of breakfast. It can be made ahead of time and warmed in the microwave, or 
eaten fresh and hot. Its yummy and has livened up our breakfast menu.

Biscuit Panini
1 can GRAND biscuits (generic works fine)...just make sure they are the BIG ONES
8 slices cheddar cheese
8 scrambled eggs (already cooked)
8 slices of ham, warmed

Bake biscuits as directed on package. Remove from the oven and cool slightly. Slice each biscuit in 1/2, so you have a top and a bottom. Fill with COOKED scrambled egg, one slice of ham, one slice of cheese. Butter top and bottom of biscuit and place in a HOT frying pan or in a panini press. IF using a frying pan, place a small, heavy plate on top of biscuit and place something heavier on top of that (causing the sandwich to PRESS together) I use another pan filled with water, when I do it this way, but you can use anything. Cook one side until brown then turn to do the same on the other side. IF using a panini press, there is no need to turn your sandwich, both sides cook at the same time. Cook until golden brown and cheese is melted. Remove from pan...EAT! Mmmmmmm!

Julie~

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Lemon Blueberry Muffins

These Lemon Blueberry Muffins are moist and packed full of deliciousness!
They are perfect hot or cold...made for breakfast on the go, breakfast at the table, 
a snack after work or before dinner...they sort of just melt in your mouth
no matter when you eat them!

Lemon Blueberry Muffins

2 c. flour
2/3 c. sugar
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4. t. salt
1 c. sour cream
1/4 c. buttermilk
1/4 c. oil
1 egg
1 t. fresh lemon zest
1 t. vanilla
1 c. fresh or frozen blueberries (if frozen, DON'T thaw)

Line muffin tin with liners, spray with cooking spray. Set aside. Mix all dry ingredient together, set aside. 
Place sour cream, butter milk, oil, egg, lemon zest and vanilla in a mixing bowl. Beat until combined. Add dry ingredient and mix until moistened (batter will be lumpy and thick) Fold in blueberries, just until combined. 
Fill each muffin cup 2/3 full. Bake at 400 degrees for 18-23 minutes or until done. Top with a lemon glaze while hot. 

Lemon Glaze: 2/3 c. powdered sugar, enough lemon juice to make a thin glaze. Stir until combined, pour over HOT muffins. 

Enjoy!
Julie~

Monday, October 21, 2013

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Isn't a chocolate chip cookie an American staple?...everyone should have them in 
their cookie jar at least my daughter thinks so...she has made them every week for a month
and they don't last long...sort of a "now you see them, now you don't" kind of thing. 
I guess that means they can be considered a family favorite.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 1/4 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1 1/2 t. cornstarch
1/2 t. salt
3/4 c. melted butter
3/4 c. brown sugar, packed
1/2 c. sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
2 t. vanilla
1 c. chocolate chips

Mix all dry ingredient in a medium bowl...set aside. In a mixing bowl, combine butter and sugars, beat until light and fluffy. Add egg and egg yolk and vanilla. Mix until combined. Add flour, mix a little at a time until all dry ingredient is incorporated. Dough will be soft. Fold in chocolate chips. Remove dough from mixing bowl and place in another dish...cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. Remove from refrigerator and let sit for 15 minutes. Roll dough into small (walnut sized) balls. Place on a greased cookie sheet. Bake at 325 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Cookies will SEEM a little doughy but will "set up" as they cool on the cookie sheet. 

Julie~

Friday, October 18, 2013

Cheesecake Waffle Breakfast Sandwich

Cheesecake is one of my FAVORITE desserts in the world....make it into a breakfast sandwich
and it becomes HEAVEN. This sandwich is a palate pleaser for both young and old...it doesn't
get much better than this!

Cheesecake Waffle Breakfast Sandwich
1 box Strawberry Eggo Waffles
Fresh sliced strawberries
cheesecake filling (recipe below)
Strawberry jam
Strawberry syrup (optional)

Toast waffles as directed on package. Cool Slightly. Set aside.

Cheesecake Filling:
8 oz. whipped topping (Cool Whip or generic)
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. powdered sugar

Combine ingredient in a mixing bowl. Mix until completely combined. Spread filling on one side of each COOKED, slightly cooled, waffle. Spread strawberry jam on one of the cheesecake filled waffles. Top jam and cheesecake filled waffle with sliced strawberries, place another cheesecake filled waffle on top(one without jam)...making a sandwich. Drizzle strawberry syrup over the top if desired. Eat with a fork..this scrumptious breakfast is too messy to eat with your hands. 

Julie~

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Navajo WAFFLES

I ADORE Navajo Tacos, but the scones are so time consuming to make (I like fresh homemade scones, made from scratch)...BUT waffles, they take NO time at all!!! THIS recipe is a great, easy dish that is almost like eating Navajo Taco's...and we love it! It's easy and tastes fabulous! Your family is sure to love it!

Navajo WAFFLES
2 boxes Krusteaz Corn Bread mix
     mix according to package directions. Cook in a waffle iron...just like you would ANY waffle.

Chili:
1 can black beans, drained
1 can red beans, drained
1 quart tomato juice
1 package chili seasoning
1 package taco seasoning
1 lb ground beef, cooked, drained

Combine all ingredient in a sauce pan. Cook until hot. Serve

Place chili onto hot waffle. Top with your favorite taco toppings: lettuce, tomatoes, avocados, sliced olives, sour cream, ranch, onions etc.... Dinner is served!

Julie~ 

Monday, October 14, 2013

Dorito Chicken

I am not a Dorito lover...but use them IN something or ON something like this and I LOVE them! They add the perfect flavor to an ordinary piece of chicken. Your family will think you are AWESOME for letting them eat Doritos with such an "ordinary" meal...you'll win the "cool mom" award for sure!

Dorito Chicken 
1 bag of Nacho Cheese Doritos
1/2 c. Panko Bread Crumbs
6 boneless,skinless, chicken breast. Cut each piece in 1/2. Set aside.

3 eggs
1 c. milk
1c. buttermilk

Mix eggs, milk and buttermilk in a mixing bowl. Whip until ingredient it combined. Place chicken in a large ziplock bag. Pour milk/egg mixture over chicken in bag. Zip bag shut and move milk around so chicken is covered. Place in the refrigerator for 1 hour. 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Crush Doritos (NOT to a powder, just to smaller pieces) and place in a shallow dish with bread crumbs. Remove chicken from refrigerator, place each piece in the crushed Doritos, covering both sides until coated. Place coated chicken on a baking pan that has been lightly sprayed with cooking spray. Continue until all chicken is covered. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until chicken is done (check by cutting a piece to see if the middle is cooked). Serve with ranch dipping sauce or barbecue sauce or eat as is...its tasty stuff no matter how you eat it!

Julie~

Friday, October 11, 2013

BLC Salad


BLC stands for: Bacon, Lettuce and Chicken Salad. Its a light, but filling meal...a nice change from the heavy food that we usually eat. It tastes soooooooo good and is one of the easiest dinners to make! In fact...you should make it for dinner tonight~

BLC Salad
*I'm not putting amounts because that all depends on the amount of salad that you want to make~

Grilled chicken (we used 1 boneless, skinless breast per person)
romaine lettuce, shredded
grated cheese
small grape or cherry tomatoes
bacon, cooked and crumbled

Combine (we let everyone make their own salad and put the ingredient on the way they wanted). Top with your favorite dressing....we used my Chipotle Ranch Dressing (recipe below). It adds the perfect "zip" to bring out all the yumminess of this salad.

Chipotle Ranch Dressing

1 c. ranch dressing (bottle or make your own...we prefer homemade)
10 shakes of Franks HOT sauce
1/2 t. cumin
a few drops of lime juice (or lemon, we've done both)

Mix together and serve! 

Julie~

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Honey Walnut Chicken

This Honey Walnut Chicken has an Asian flare that's to die for. I't's officially made its way onto the "VERY FAVORITE list" at our house and is requested frequently when I ask..."what would you like me to make for dinner"....Its extremely delicious..so good that when I see the picture, my mouth waters. Its sure to please everyone and leave them coming back asking for more.

Honey Walnut Chicken
3 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into bite sized chunks
Place in a large ziplock bag and set aside

Batter:
1 c. flour
3/4 c. cornstarch
2 eggs
1 1/2 c. water
1/4 t. baking powder
1/4 t. baking soda

Mix all ingredient until combined. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours. 

Chicken Marinade:
6 T. soy sauce
3/4 t. pepper
6 T cornstarch

Mix in a small dish, pour over cut chicken in ziplock bag. Zip bag shut and move side to side so the marinade is distributed throughout the bag covering the chicken. Refrigerate 1-2 hours.

Sauce:
1 c. chicken broth
1 c. honey
3/4 c. vinegar
1/2 c. soy sauce
1c. sugar
1/2 c. cornstarch
1/4 c. + 1T  water

Heat first 5 ingredient in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil. In a small dish, mix water and cornstarch to make a thickening. Pour a small amount at a time into boil sauce. Stir constantly with a whip. The sauce will thicken as you cook it for 1-2 minutes. Set aside

Cooking Chicken:
Heat 1qt oil in a deep pan or fryer. Heat to 350 degrees. Place a small amount of marinated chicken into a clean bowl. Pour small amount of batter over chicken, just enough to cover it. Mix around with your hands. Place pieces of battered chicken into HOT oil (a piece at a time...don't POUR into oil). Cook until done, turning periodically if you are frying it in a pan, if you are using a fryer...it will cook both sides. Remove cooked chicken and place on a platter covered with paper towels to collect the excess oil. Repeat until all chicken is cooked. Keep the oil temperature HOT and at 350 degrees. After all chicken is cooked, place into a large dish and pour sauce over the top, toss until all chicken is covered OR pour sauce on individual servings (thats what we do)....add 1 c. slightly chopped walnuts to chicken and sauce OR just place them on top of each serving. Serve over hot, steamed rice or oriental noodles (we like rice) if desired. 

Enjoy!
Julie~

Monday, October 7, 2013

'Nacho Business" Dorito Meatloaf

Meatloaf + Cheese= comfort food! 
My kids actually ASK for meatloaf...something I never did when growing up, 
not that it was AWFUL but it just WASN'T my favorite...my kids tend to differ, 
it IS ONE of their favorites. 
I made a BIG loaf of this Nacho Business Dorito Meatloaf hoping for leftovers,
 but it didn't happen. 
They gobbled down the entire loaf in one sitting!
IT WAS PRETTY tasty,  if I do say so myself!

"Nacho Business" Dorito Meatloaf
2 lbs ground beef
2 1/2 c. crushed NACHO CHEESE Doritos
3 eggs
2 pkg. taco seasoning
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese

Place all ingredient in a mixing bowl. Mix together ( preferably with your hands, BUT you can use a fork or spoon if you prefer) until combined. Place in a large loaf pan. Bake at 350 for 1 hour or until center is completely cooked. Remove from oven, top meatloaf with cheese. Place in the oven until cheese is melted. Serve hot.

Julie~

Friday, October 4, 2013

Seasoned Kabobs

Kabobs are fine just made with "regular" meat...but what makes them SPECTACULAR
IS that little special something that you soak the meat in PRIOR to the grilling
These Seasoned Kabobs are AMAZING! Don't let your LAST grilling for the season
be left to just "regular" meat...make it the BEST it can be!

Seasoned Kabobs
1 c. oil
1 1/3c. honey
1 1/3 c. soy sauce
1 t. pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
8-12 boneless skinless chicken breast OR 4 lbs pork loin, cut into 1" squares

Combine oil, honey, soy sauce, pepper and minced garlic in a small bowl. Stir until all ingredient is combined. Place cut meat into a large ziplock bag (it might take 2) and pour marinate over the top. Place in fridge for 2+ hours. Remove meat from the fridge, place on skewers with desired ingredient such as: red peppers, pineapple, green pepper, jalapenos, onions, mushrooms, bacon, zucchini etc...grill until done. ENJOY!

Julie~ 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Oatmeal Lemon Squares

I am a sucker when it comes to lemon...I love it (guess you might have already guessed that). These bars are SOOOOO good and were gobbled right up before I got to hide some away for later. They are rich and sort of taste like cheesecake. They have quickly become a favorite at our house (but what treat hasn't).

Oatmeal Lemon Squares
1 1/2 c. + 2 T flour
3/4 t. salt
1 1/2 t. baking powder
3/4 c. butter
1 1/2 c. brown sugar
1 1/2 c. oatmeal
1 and 1/2 can's (that is CAN'S not cups) sweetened condensed milk
3/4 c. lemon juice
1 T. lemon zest

Combine butter and sugar and beat until fluffy. Add dry ingredient and oatmeal to butter mixture. Beat on low until all ingredient is combined. Divide the mixture in 1/2 and set aside 1/2 of the mixture. Press the other 1/2 of mixture into the bottom of a 9x13" pan. Set aside. Mix milk, lemon juice and lemon zest. Spread over crust in the 9x13" pan. Sprinkle the other 1/2 of crumb mixture over the top. Bake at 350 degrees for 23 minutes or until golden brown. Let the bars cool for 30 minutes then refrigerate for 2 hours or more. Cut into squares and serve.  

Julie~

Monday, September 30, 2013

Grandma Kathy's Marshmallow Krispies

Reunions are just as much about the food on the table,  as they are the people that bring the
"potluck" treats and dishes for everyone to sample and chow down on.
My stepmom is a fantastic cook, a wonderful lady and a great mom...
she brought these tasty, lip smackin, crunchy,caramel bites of yumminess to our reunion....I had 
NO intention on eating any because I am not a huge fan of marshmallows. After 
watching everyone else devoir them, fight over them and beg for more, I figured
I must be missing out, so I gave in and took a bite...well one bite and I was hooked, 5 marshmallows later, I decided I had better stop............NEEDLESS to say, they were AMAZING!
They are gooey, sticky and sweet...just like a good caramel marshmallow should be. 
Give them a try..........even if you DON'T like marshmallows, you might like these!

Grandma Kathy's Marshmallow Krispies

1 bag regular sized marshmallows
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 pkg caramels, with wrappers removed
1 cube butter (real butter)
1 box of rice crispies (you may or may not use the entire box)

Place butter, caramels and milk in a medium saucepan. Melt ingredient, stirring continuously. Cool slightly. Pour some rice krispies into a mixing bowl. Set aside. Using a skewer or fork, dip each marshmallow into caramel and then roll in rice krispies until marshmallows are completely covered. Place finished marshmallows onto a baking sheet that has been sprayed with pan coating. Continue process until all marshmallows are dipped or until caramel is gone...whichever comes first. Cool and EAT! Great for those holiday parties that are coming up...just around the corner, OR make them just for fun!

Julie~

Friday, September 27, 2013

Apple Pie French Toast

Mmmmmm....Its APPLE season...time to utilize all those apples you have. This 
recipe calls for CANNED apple pie filling, I like to purchase my apple pie filling but I realize some of you out there are talented enough to can your own apple pie filling...
so this will be the perfect recipe for those busy "canning people" as well as those of us 
who may not be making our own, either way its a tasty breakfast treat!

Apple Pie French Toast
8-10 slices heavy bread
5 eggs
1 1/2 c. heavy cream
1 t. vanilla
1 t. nutmeg
1 t. cinnamon
1-2 cans apple pie filling (amount depends on how much you like to put on your french toast)
1 8oz. whipped topping

IN a mixing bowl, whisk eggs and cream together. Add spices and vanilla. Stir until blended. Dip bread into mixture and cook on a hot griddle, turning bread after about 2-3 minutes to cook both sides. Continue until all pieces of bread are cooked. Top french toast with apple pie filling and a dollop of whipped topping. Sprinkle with cinnamon if desired. 

Julie~

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

HOT Spam Sandwich

Spam....you either LOVE it or HATE it...I grew up with this fabulous stuff
and I actually like it! This HOT Spam Sandwich is one of my favorite ways to 
eat Spam! Its got a way of just melting in your mouth! 

HOT Spam Sandwich
1 can Spam sandwich meat
1 c. grated cheddar cheese
Mayonnaise (THE REAL stuff)
Bread
Butter

Grate Spam on a cheese grater. Place in a mixing bowl. Add grated cheese and enough mayonnaise to give it a creamy texture (like you would mix up tunafish). Stir until combined. Slice bread (if you are using homemade bread). Spread butter on OUTSIDE of bread slices. Spread Spam mixture on the inside of bread (you get it...you're making a sandwich). Place butter side of bread into a hot frying pan, cook until each side of bread is browned and cheese is semi-melted. Eat while HOT. 

Julie~ 

Monday, September 23, 2013

Chicken Taco Pita Pocket

Who doesn't love an easy, tasty sandwich. I love pita sandwiches, but where I live, 
 I can rarely find the "Pita Pocket" bread....so when I do, I buy them in PILES and freeze them.
This pita sandwich is one of my favorites! Hope it becomes one of yours too. 

Chicken Taco Pita Pocket
Rotissari Chicken, shredded OR your favorite cooked chicken
shredded cheese
diced avocado
diced tomato
ranch dressing
Pita Pocket Bread

*I didn't give you measurements because its just one of those things you put together to your liking. 

Place chicken pieces into pocket bread, top with cheese, avocado, tomato and ranch dressing. Serve with your favorite side dish. Mmmmmmm!

Julie~

Friday, September 20, 2013

Coconut Cream Cheese Balls

These little "dream balls" are so DELISH...but they are rich and addictive as well (just giving you a heads up). 
They would be great for those upcoming holiday parties with friends and family, as well as a treat to 
serve the kidlets when they get home from school...OR better yet, to 
eat while they are gone! THEY are one of my favorite little treats!

Coconut Cream Cheese Balls
1 8oz package cream cheese, softened
1 8oz can crushed pineapple, DRAINED WELL!!!
1 c. chopped pecans
3 c. sweetened flaked coconut

In a mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese and DRAINED pineapple until well combined. Add pecans and mix just until incorporated. Place in a small dish, refrigerate for approximately 1 hour. After the 1 hour, roll cream cheese mixture into small balls and then roll the balls into the shredded coconut. Refrigerate overnight. ENJOY!

Julie~

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Caramel Apple Breakfast Parfait

I love making new, different and fun things for breakfast...it shakes up the 
"breakfast boredom" as I send my family off on their day...This Caramel Apple Parfait is scrumptious. It was easy and tasted like HEAVEN! You can easily make this parfait for 5 people or make it for 1....
YOU can't go wrong with this!!

Caramel Apple Breakfast Parfait
1 lg carton Vanilla Yogurt
2 c. granola
3 peeled, diced apples
6 T. brown sugar
2 T melted butter
craison's 

Place diced apples in a frying pan. Add melted butter and brown sugar. Cook on low, saute apples until caramelized. Don't let sugar harden onto apples. Cook until they are tender. 

Make parfait by layering yogurt, apples, granola...top with a few craison's if desired. 

Julie~

Monday, September 16, 2013

April's Cucumber Salad

Cucumbers are in season. I am sure if you planted them, they are probably coming out your ears. 
They are one vegetable that I'm always wondering what to do with them (besides make pickles)
when there are hoards of them hanging around...WELL, here is a fabulous recipe to ease your load of those "long green things" I love this cucumber salad, it makes my mouth water just looking at the picture. 
Its light and full of that summer feel that we are all trying to hang on to. 

April's Cucumber Salad
5 peeled cucumbers, diced
1 1/2 c. PLAIN yogurt
1/2 t. (or more) pepper
1 t. (or more) dill seed
1 t. (or more) lemon pepper

Dice cucumbers, place in a mixing bowl. Add yogurt, stir until combined. Add seasonings TO TASTE. You may want more or less than what the recipe calls for. I just added the allotted amount and then added more until it tasted the way I liked it. 

Serve with your favorite grilled chicken dinner. I think you're really going to enjoy this light, creamy salad. 

Julie~

Monday, September 9, 2013

Mexican Supreme

Fall makes me think of soup and casseroles. This Mexican Supreme is a little 
reminder that casseroles DON'T have to be made from rice or pasta....it has 
a fun mexican flare and taste delish!

Mexican Supreme
1 lb ground beef, cooked and drained
1 pkg. taco seasoning
1 can cream chicken soup
2 1/2 c. grated cheddar cheese
2 tomatoes, diced
1 large green pepper, diced + 2 T. butter/margarine
2 c. bisquick (you will also need 1/2 c. milk, 1 egg and 2 T. margarine for mixing this up too)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cook ground beef. Set aside. In a separate bowl combine soup and  1 1/2 c. cheese. Stir until combined. Set aside.

Mix bisquick with 1/2 c. milk, 1 egg and 2 T. softened margarine. Stir until dough is soft and combined. Pat dough onto bottom of an 8x8 greased baking dish. 

Saute green peppers in butter, when done at the cooked meat and taco seasoning, stir until mixed and green peppers are covered. On top of biscuit crust, layer meat (mixed with green peppers), tomatoes, soup mixture, top with remaining cheese. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until done. (mine took exactly 30 minutes).

Julie~

Friday, September 6, 2013

Breakfast Sliders

Who doesn't like a new twist to an old favorite? Pancakes are so versatile, easy to make
and everyone seems to like them...SO, one morning I decided to "play" around with them
 a bit...spice up the ol' hum drum breakfast...and this is what I came up with. IT WAS DIVINE!!
We've eaten them several times and they are no doubt, a favorite in this house!!

Breakfast Sliders
20 small pancakes made with your favorite pancake recipe (mine pancakes were approximately 2 1/2 inches across) This will make 10 sliders, if more or less sliders are desired, adjust your recipe accordingly.

Cheesecake Filling:
1/3 c. powdered sugar
8 oz cream cheese (softened in the microwave for 30 seconds)
8 oz whipped topping
*THIS makes quite a bit of filling, more than enough to fill 10 sliders...we also dipped our's in the filling, but you don't have to...we just like the cheesecake filling.

Mix cream cheese and powdered sugar with an electric mixer until smooth. Add whipped topping, mix until completely combined. Set aside.

1 lb strawberries, halved

Spread desired amount of cheesecake filling on one small pancake, add strawberry. Top with another pancake. Continue until all pancakes are made into sliders. (I used a toothpick to hold them together...but you don't have to.) Serve!

Julie~

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Dayna's Bacon Ranch Chicken

I love cooking with chicken, and after many years of TRYING to like bacon, I
 think I can finally say that I honestly ENJOY this smoky, yummy, goodness of a meat!!
SOOOOO...having said that, you know this combination would be a hit with me. Its packed full
of yummy, gooey cheese and all the flavors that just make your mouth sing! Its quick and easy 
and a huge hit at the dinner table. 

Dayna's Bacon Ranch Chicken
6-8 boneless, skinless chicken breast

BROWN in a frying pan, until the tops of both sides have started to cook. DON'T cook through...remember you are just "browning". 

Place BROWNED chicken in a greased 9x13 baking pan. 

2 c. ranch dressing
1 1/2 lbs cooked bacon, crumbled
3 c. grated cheddar cheese

Pour approximately 1/4 c. ranch on each piece of chicken. Top with grated cheddar cheese and bacon crumbles. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until chicken is done. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

Watermelon Slush

Some of you might be celebrating the "last" of summer today...IF you
are, you might want to make this yummy Watermelon Slush to help you
REALLY CELEBRATE...its pretty darn good, if I do say so myself!!

Watermelon Slush
3 c. cubed seedless watermelon
1 1/2 lbs fresh strawberries, halved, with tops cut off
1/4 c. fresh lemon juice
1 c. sugar
20 fl. oz sprite
1 banana

Combine all ingredient in a blender until smooth, depending on the size of your blender, you may have to divide it. Chill if desired, but we liked to drink it right after making. Enjoy!!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Waffle Pizza

With the HUGE craze going around with the "Waffle Trucks"...and people getting to order and eat waffles on the street, day or night...I couldn't help but fall in love with THIS fun, crazy idea for Waffle Pizza...I am 
so glad someone thought it up!! I gave it a try on my family and they looked a little "taken back" at first
BUT after they bit into it, they couldn't get enough! 
Its great for kids and adults....after all, food speaks to all ages, right?!

Waffle Pizza
*There are NO limits to this fabulous idea...so use your creativity and top YOUR pizza with all of your favorite toppings.....I will just give you some topping ideas but I will  put a * by the ones that I used (just incase you fell in love with my picture...which isn't very GRAND by any means) and you wanted to copy what I put on mine.

Waffles
       make your favorite waffle recipe and cook according to instructions

Toppings:
hash browns *
scrambled eggs *
bacon*
ham*
cheese*
ground sausage
chopped nuts
pineapple
diced strawberries
blueberries
whipped topping
maple syrup*
blackberry syrup
powered sugar
raisins
diced banana's
strawberry sauce

ENJOY!
Julie~

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Lemon Brownies

If you asked me today what my favorite treat was...I would tell you THESE Lemon Brownies
have BEAT everything out...I ADORE THEM! I made one pan (9x13) and in a matter of 1 hour (yes, you heard that correctly, 1 hour)...THEY were gone and everyone was wondering 
WHERE they had all gone...NO I DIDN'T EAT THEM ALL....EVERYONE took credit for
their contribution to the eating fest...BUT THEY also wanted to know where there 
were more of them (as if I had hidden them...somewhere, which I didn't, but should have). NEXT time
I will make 2 pans of them...and YES, I will most likely hoard a few and hid them JUST for ME!
If you like lemon...you will LOOOOOVVVEEEE these!!

Lemon Brownies
1 c. butter (real stuff), softened
1 1/2 c. flour
4 eggs
4 T lemon zest + 4 T. lemon juice
1 1/2 c. sugar
1/2 t. salt
yellow food coloring (enough to make the dough yellow)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 9x13 baking pan with cooking spray, set aside. Zest and juice 2-3 lemons (amount depends on size), set aside. IN a mixing bowl combine flour, sugar, salt and softened butter until combined. In a seperate bowl combine eggs, lemon juice and lemon zest. Whisk together. Pour into flour mixture, beat for 2 minutes, until smooth and creamy. Pour into prepared pan, bake for 27 minutes or until edges are golden brown. *The middle doesn't quite seem done at this point, but it IS..don't let it fool you. Watch them closely, if you cook them too long, they will be dry and won't taste good!

Cool completely. Top with frosting (recipe below).

Lemon Frosting:
2 1/2 c. powdered sugar
1/4 c. milk
1/3 c. shortening
1 t. vanilla
2 T. FRESH lemon juice (yes, you'll probably use 1-2 lemons for this)
yellow food coloring (enough to make frosting desired color of yellow)

Mix all ingredients together until frosting is fluffy. Spread onto COOLED brownies. Cut and ENJOY your heart out!!!
**Food coloring IS optional and doesn't change the taste, texture or yumminess of these fabulous brownies, IF you choose NOT to use it!

Julie~

Monday, July 29, 2013

Spinach Cottage Cheese Dip

I like spinach...fresh, frozen and YES, even from the can (I realize that this might be un-american!)
So this recipe was a "must make" for me. I like that it tastes great with corn chips or crackers. Its filling and can be served as a main course...if you live at my house, you will find ANYTHING can be 
served as a main course! THIS dip made for a great lunch one Saturday
afternoon...its hearty, yet tastes light enough to make you think of summer while you eat it!

 Spinach Cottage Cheese Dip

1 10 oz box of frozen, chopped spinach- cooked and drained WELL
1 c. roasted salted almonds, slightly chopped
1 16 oz container cottage cheese
1 package dry ranch dressing mix

Mix all ingredient together until combined. Serve with tortilla chips or your favorite crackers...mine happened to be wheat thins or triscuits.

Julie~

Friday, July 26, 2013

Almond Applesauce Muffins

YUMMY...and good for your too!! (AT least when compared to a frosted doughnut!)
Eat these for breakfast, for lunch, for snack, for dinner...and anywhere inbetween! They are crazy good!

Almond Applesauce Muffins
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 c. sugar
1 egg
1 t. vanilla
1 c. applesauce
2 c. flour
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. ground cinnamon
1/2 t. ground allspice
1/4 t. ground cloves
1/2 c. chopped almonds (raw)
1/2 c. golden raisins

Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix until fluffy. Stir in applesauce. Add dry ingredient. Fold in nuts and raisins. Line muffin cups with liners, spray with cooking spray. Fill each cup 2/3 full. Bake for 14-20 minutes OR until top bounces back when touched (DON'T overcook). Cool slightly (3 minutes approximately). Serve with butter. 

Julie~

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Julie's Steak Rub

Happy 24th of July to all of my 
UTAH fans...Have a very safe, fun and scrumptious holiday!
I thought this recipe might come in handy today
as many of you will be barbecuing and spending
time with family and friends! 

For those of you wonderful fans that don't live in UTAH,
you can enjoy this awesome recipe as well...you can 
even celebrate this FUN, UTAH holiday with us, if you want!

Happy Barbecuing Everyone!!
I don't eat steak very often...usually when we eat out, there are MANY other choices on the menu
that sound so much better to me...BUT on occasion I CRAVE a good steak...it has to be tender, 
VERY RARE and have excellent flavor. We barbecued some steaks a few nights ago and 
I decided that I would try my hand at a "steak rub", then if it tasted awful, I had no one to blame but myself!
After mixing a little of this and a little of that, I came up with just the RIGHT blend 
of all the right herbs and spices to my liking...so now comes the big test...
TO RUB IT ON AND COOK THE STEAKS!
I was a little leary of what they might taste like BUT the outcome was SOOOOOO good! I even ate
leftovers (which, eating any steak at all is HUGE for me!) I would have to say,
 "I THINK THIS ONE is a KEEPER!"

 Julie's Steak Rub
1 T. garlic powder
2 t. season salt
1 t. pepper
1/4 t. cayenne pepper
1 t. lemon pepper
1 package DRY ITALIAN dressing mix

Place all ingredient in a small dish, stir until combined. Rub liberally onto steak. Grill on barbecue grill until steak reaches desired color...(as you can see, my desired color is RED)! ITS so good, I think I want some right NOW!!

Julie~

Monday, July 22, 2013

Coming Back~

Did you think I was never coming back??? 
SURPRISE...I AM! 
Summer has been busy, I won't lie....life seems to scurry along whether 
I am ready for the ride or not. I haven't lacked for things to do...and sadly enough
there have been days, that cooking hasn't happened in our house....cereal OR TOAST was
the meal plan! NOTHING has slowed down...its only gotten busier
BUT I am going to do my best to 
get some recipes posted and try to get back in the swing of things.
UNTIL after Labor Day, things may be a little sporadic, BUT don't give up
on me...I haven't forgotten you and I hope you haven't forgotten about me...BUT
right now, I feel its important to put my best hours toward my family
AND THATS ONE OF THE REASONS WHY we have worked together...

 on trying to complete our new deck (which is coming along quite nicely I might add)~
see....what did I tell you?! WOO HOO!

 keeping a garden, weedless (as much as possible)~

 the flowers blooming and watered (that's progress for me!)~

And spending time with these beauties...

...these gorgeous little hunks....

 as well as my gorgeous BIG hunks....



...eating is something WE STILL DO, just not on as big of a scale 
as we USUALLY DO! 

SOOOOO....keep a close watch, I will be posting recipes
and getting back in the swing of things!

Thanks for your support, your kind words and checking out our recipes!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Summer Lovin~


Happy JULY 1st my fellow foodies!
Summer is in full force around here...schedules are crazy and life is full of, well you know...just "LIFE". I am taking a 2 week break from blogging to spend a little time "catching" up on some much needed things on a long list of "to-do's". NO WORRIES, I will be back on July 15th with new recipes to help you plan your summer menu's. Enjoy browsing around the blog, filling your "food calendars" with many fun and YUMMY recipes to try out until then. Thank you to all of the amazing fans, followers and for the kind thoughts and comments that many of you leave. I am glad that you enjoy trying out new recipes, experimenting with and eating scrumptious food as much as I do!
HAPPY SUMMER TO YOU ALL!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Julie's Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken

HOLY COW!!!.....you are going to be begging for more of this! I couldn't get enough (sadly, I even ate it cold!). Baking it makes it a "tad" bit healthier, but I would be completely going out on a limb if I 
told you that this was a "HEALTHY" dish...so, having said that...enjoy this "semi-light" sweet and sour chicken, I sure did!!

Julie's Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken

8 boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 c. cornstarch
5 eggs, beaten
1/2 c. canola oil
1 t. season salt
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. onion powder
1/2 t. pepper

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Rinse chicken under cold water, pat dry. Cut into small cubes. Set aside.
Place cornstarch and seasonings in a medium bowl, whisk together. Place oil in a frying pan and heat (until HOT). Put eggs in a small bowl, beat completely. Dip cubed chicken pieces into cornstarch and then dip into the beaten eggs. Place each piece into frying pan until browned...DON'T cook completely (the baking will do that). Place "browned chicken" on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour, turning chicken about every 20 minutes. WHILE chicken is baking, make the sweet and sour sauce below. 

 Sweet and Sour Sauce:
1 1/3 c. vinegar
1 3/4 c. sugar
2 1/2 T. salt
3 T. oil
1 3/4 c. ketchup
2 1/4 c. COLD water
7 T. cornstarch

Combine ingredient in a medium sauce pan, whisk completely. Cook until thickened and glossy looking. Stir constantly or sauce will stick to pan. WHEN thick and glossy, remove from heat. Set aside. 

Serve cooked chicken over steamed rice, topped with sweet and sour sauce! Makes great leftovers.

Julie~ 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Vanilla Cream Eclair Bars

Cream puffs, eclairs, pastries of any kind, make me drool...I am a complete weakling around them. This Vanilla Cream Eclair Bar didn't last long at our house. Its just like eating a cream puff with MORE filling...mmmmmm!

Vanilla Cream Eclair Bars

Eclair Crust:
1 c. water
1/2 c. butter
1 c. flour
3 eggs

Bring water and butter to a rolling boil. Add flour and stir until the mixture forms a ball and leave the sides of the pan. Remove pan from the heat, let cool for approx. 5 minutes. In a small bowl, beat eggs (individually...because you will add them individually) Add each egg, one at a time, stirring well after each one. After all the eggs are mixed and the mixture is smooth, grease a 9x13" pan. Spray cooking spray on your hands as well, carefully spread crust mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 pan. . Bake for 20 minutes. Crust will puff up,  poke bubbles with a fork to release the air. Bake for 3 more minutes or until crust is browned on top. Let cool completely. 

Vanilla Cream Filling:
2 c. cold milk (whole or 2%)
2 (3.4 oz) packages of vanilla instant pudding
1 (8 oz) whipped topping, thawed

Add milk to a large mixing bowl (I used my kitchen aide). Add pudding mixes, whip until thick. Fold in the whipped topping, spread over the cooled crust. Refrigerate for 30 minutes

Topping:
1 (12 oz) container whipped topping
1 plain hershey's chocolate bar

Spread topping on pudding mixture. Using a hand held cheese grater, grate candy bar on top of whipped topping....the chocolate is optional...if you don't like it, don't use it. Serve. Refrigerate any leftovers.

Julie~

Monday, June 24, 2013

Coconut Muffins

Coconut lovers, watch out...these muffins are full of that yummy, sweet, coconut goodness that makes your mouth beg for more. They make for a perfect breakfast, snack or a "just because treat"....I adore them!

Coconut Muffins
2 c. Bisquick biscuit mix
3 T. sugar
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 c. flaked coconut
2 T. canola oil
1 egg
1 c. sour cream

Combine Bisquick, sugar, soda and coconut. Stir gently. Add remaining ingredients and stir with a fork, just until moistened. Spray muffin cups with cooking spray. Fill cups 2/3 full. Bake at 400 degrees for 13-17 minutes. YUM!!!

Julie~

Friday, June 21, 2013

Baked Chimichangas

Making Mexican food a "little" healthier, didn't take away any of the Mexican flair of these SCRUMPTIOUS Chimichangas!

Baked Chimichangas

1 rotisserie chicken, deboned and meat shredded
8-10 flour tortillas
1- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
1-2 c. grated cheese (I used monterey jack and pepper jack)

cooking spray
Garnishes: salsa,sour cream,shredded cheese,diced avocado,diced tomatoes,diced onions etc...

Combine softened cream cheese, grated cheese. Mix until combined, add shredded chicken. Place mixture down the center of each tortilla. Roll up, burrito style, tucking in the ends so the filling doesn't come out. Place on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Spray the tops of each chimichanga. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Turn over and cook for another 10-15 minutes. Top with your favorite mexican garnishes. Enjoy a little "healthier" version of your favorite mexican dish.

Julie~