A Dairy Good Snack

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I keep seeing a lot of posts online about “great 100 calorie snacks!!!” or “50 great 100 calorie snacks!”….who actually is ever satisfied by 100 calories!?!?!?! Well, I’m not, and I like sweeter snacks sooooo 100 calories may not be in my snacking realm. That being said, one of my favorite snacks is yogurt.  I am not sure that I can live in a world without yogurt.. or chocolate… or ice cream for that matter.

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I came about this amazing recipe a while ago when roaming around on food blogs that made a plain vanilla yogurt into the greatest sweet dessert or snack that I have tried in a while.  It’s a salted caramel & mixed berry yogurt dip.  Although the title basically says it all, it calls for warm salted caramel topping poured over vanilla yogurt all topped with mixed berries and scooped up to eat with a salty Triscuit.  Tell me that doesn’t sound delicious.

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I made this into my own single serving recipe, but it can be used as a dip for parties or multiplied to serve more people.  Check out the berry & dairy good snack recipe below:

Salted Caramel & Mixed Berry Yogurt Dip:

  • 1- 5.3 oz vanilla yogurt
  • 2 Tbsp. Warm Salted Caramel Topping
  • 1/2 Cup Mixed Berries
  • 1 Serving Triscuits
  • Sea Salt to Top

Place yogurt in bowl, top with caramel, berries, and sprinkle with sea salt.  Serve with Triscuits.

Adapted From: Reluctant Entertainer

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

Weekly Crème De La Crumb 10-2

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«…….and good alcohol»

Check out some of these awesome recipes I found this week from these food bloggers around the web!

This’ll give you a real excuse to open that bottle of wine on a Tuesday night- Red Wine, Grape, & Brie Grilled Cheese

Tortellini is good, but fried tortellini has got to be even better- Parmesan Tortellini Bites

Blue cheese, hot sauce, mushrooms… say no more- Blue Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms in a Creamy Hot Sauce

With a name like crack pie, I could definitely see myself getting addicted to this dessert-Crack Pie

Fancy up your brunch with this dish- Sunday Brunch Croque Madame

Healthier, but still tasty, version of spaghetti carbonara- Spaghetti Squash Carbonara

It wouldn’t be fall without featuring a pumpkin recipe- Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

As if the name ultimate didn’t sell these enough for me, the combo of mint and chocolate looks delish- Ultimate Grasshopper Cookies

Tasty take on a classic chicken dish- Chicken Parmesan Wraps

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

Mexi-Can I?

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What is it that makes Mexican food so addicting, or rather, what is it that makes Chipotle so addicting??? Easy- control of what goes into your meal, variety of choices, speed and convenience, and not to mention the amazing food that you get when you go there.  Chipotle is one of those places where when I get a meal from there, I really go all out; chips, guac, burrito bowl, hot sauce, and an ice cold D Coke.

Almost every Thursday at home, my mom makes a Mexican type meal for her and my dad.  One of my favorite ideas of hers is when she puts a bunch of Mexican style ingredients out and lets us build our own burrito bowls.  It’s like having your own version of Chipotle at home without the weird music and stainless steel/plywood chairs & tables. Clever idea, right?? It’s definitely cheaper per person to make at home and control is all yours when it comes to what goes into your burrito bowl.

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Since I’ve been craving Mexican food lately and checking what ingredients I had around the house, I decided to make my version of homemade Chipotle burrito bowls.  When I am at Chipotle, I usually get a vegetarian bowl with rice, black beans, salsas, sour cream, lettuce, and cheese.  I figured out which of these toppings I could make at home/put my own twist on and my bowl came together as a healthier, smaller version of what I normally get at Chipotle.

The cool thing with homemade burrito bowls is that you can make or add any ingredients that your heart may desire.  Here are some other options you could add to your bowls:

  • Protein: Chicken, Steak, Tofu, Other Beans
  • Grains: White rice, brown rice, grains mix
  • Toppings: Different Salsas, Guacamole, Lettuce, Cheese (shredded or queso), hot sauce

Check out the recipes below that I used to make my Homemade Chipotle Burrito Bowls:

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Cilantro Lime Quinoa:

  • ½ cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 lime
  • ¼ Cup Cilantro, chopped [or desired amount]

Directions:

Place ½ cup quinoa and 1 cup water in a sauce pan.  Turn heat to high and bring to a boil.  Once boiling, turn heat to low and cover until quinoa has soaked up all of the water (about 15 mins)

Fluff quinoa with a fork.  Squeeze in the juice of one lime and mix in the chopped cilantro.


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Copycat Chipotle Corn Salsa:

  • 1 12-ounce bag of frozen sweet yellow corn, defrosted and drained
  • 2 medium-sized jalapenos, seeded and chopped
  • 1/3 cup red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

Directions:

Drain corn once thawed.  Mix together all of the ingredients & serve.

Adapted from: How Sweet Eats


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Chipotle Style Black Beans: [7 servings]

  • 2 Cans Black Beans
  • 1 Tsp. Chili Powder
  • ½ Tsp. Cumin
  • 1 Garlic Clove, Minced
  • ½ Tsp. Salt
  • ¼ Tsp. Sugar

Directions:

Pour the full can of beans and drained beans into a small saucepan.  Add to the beans each of the other ingredients.  Heat over medium until hot.

Adapted from: Savings Lifestyle

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

Great Eggspectations

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Eggs– the go-to, cheap and easy ingredient that can be made into something beautiful- like a frittata, quiche, omelet, OR baked eggs like I decided to make this week. Making baked eggs is just a fancier way to cook regular old eggs- you figure out ingredients to mix with the eggs, put them in a baking dish, and wait until the egg whites sit.  You don’t have to be Bobby Flay to cook this dish.

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I really like like to cook eggs for meals because they are easy for 1 serving dishes.  I’m all about the one serving dishes…mostly because I don’t enjoy eating leftovers and I also really only cook for myself.  If I haven’t mentioned before, I also have portion control problem- so the less servings I make, the better off I am.

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Back to this week’s dish- I made Baked Ricotta Eggs.  Doesn’t sound appealing yet? Well I first mixed together the ricotta with garlic, olive oil, lemon zest, parsley, & power greens (kale, spinach, and swiss chard).  After placing that mixture in a ramekin, I nuzzled on top two eggs and drizzled with a little olive oil.  After they baked I sprinkled with salt and pepper and dunked strips of toast into the egg and ricotta mixture.  The way I know this was good is because I did not feel the need to even put one ounce of hot sauce on my eggs- that literally never happens.

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Check out this easy recipe to satisfy your eggspectations:

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Baked Ricotta Eggs: [1 serving]

  • 1 tablespoons olive oil (+ more for greasing, drizzling)
  • 1/4 cup ricotta
  • 1 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup chopped raw spinach, kale, or a mix of both
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped parsley
  • 2 eggs
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1-2 pieces of toast, cut into slices for serving

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix first six ingredients in a small mixing bowl and place mixture into a greased ramekin or baking dish.

Carefully, crack in two eggs into the dish, pushing aside ingredients to make room. Then drizzle with olive oil, and season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.

Bake for 15 minutes or until whites have set, but yokes are still soft (check every so often… all depends on the size of the ramekin being used).  Serve immediately with toast.

Adapted from: Camille Styles

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

Weekly Crème De La Crumb 9-27

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«Champagne is always the answer»

Check out some of these awesome recipes I found this week from these food bloggers around the web!

Brie & BBQ Pulled Pork-Stuffed Pretzel Rolls…. yes please- BBQ Pulled Pork & Brie Stuffed Pretzel Rolls

Never met a pizza like you before…-Brown Butter Lobster Pizza with Bacon & Fontina 

Frosted cookies just like the ones you find at the grocery store- Best Ever Chocolate Lofthouse Cookies

These meatball subs are far from SUBpar- Gouda Stuffed Meatball Subs

Salmon sandwich.. try and say that 5x over- Salmon Sandwich with Tomato Basil Chutney

Salad topped with pefect fall ingredients- Harvest Cobb Salad

A snack that looks like it would be a POP-ular hit- Samoa Popcorn

3 unique & tasty looking guacamole recipes- 3 Unique Guacamole Recipes

Simple chicken dish with a basil cream sauce- Chicken with Basil Cream Sauce

 

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

The Souper Bowl of Spice

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Deciding to make soup this week was such a great idea… until I realized that it was going to be a high of 80 degrees each day. The soup still happened and I just pretended while I was making it and eating it that it was a cool, fall, perfect day outside for a nice big bowl of hot soup.

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Butternut squash soup is all the hype these days on the Internet. Seeing as though I have never made it myself before, I thought I’d give it a try. I tried to find an easy recipe that used most ingredients that I already had in the kitchen. I really wish I would have found this AMAZING looking Smoked Gruyere Butternut Squash Soup before today…but I was too late. Luckily there are plenty of cold Ohio days ahead that I can find time to make this version.

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The recipe that I decided to use for my butternut squash soup fit all three of my criteria:

  1. Easy √
  2. Not a lot of ingredients to buy √
  3. Somewhat creamy (I like soups with cream in them… healthy, I know) √

The soup turned out to be really good. It has a good amount of spice, its not too thick, and it also was pretty simple to make.

Check out the recipe below for this fun fall soup:

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Spiced Butternut Squash Soup: [4 Servings]

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 (2 pound) butternut squash – peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • Chopped cilantro for topping
  • Sour cream to taste, optional

Directions:

Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Cook and stir onion and garlic until softened and browned.

Stir chicken broth, squash, curry powder, salt, cumin, and cayenne pepper into onion mixture. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer and cover until squash is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir half-and-half and honey into squash mixture.

Pour squash mixture into a blender no more than half full. Puree in batches until smooth.

Ladle soup into serving bowls and top with chopped cilantro and sour cream.

Adapted from: All Recipes <– Props to her for the recipe

Look out for more souper recipes in the future.

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

It’s All Lentil From Here

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I had never shopped at Trader Joes until this past Monday.  I really hate myself for it now because I feel like for the past years that I have been doing my own grocery shopping, I have missed out on the amazingness that Trader Joe’s has to offer. Whatever- now it’s all the rage in my life and I will be frequenting there more often- and it isn’t expensive like I assumed.  You know what they say about assuming…..

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Well, Trader Joe’s had this great sample station when I went there. I am not one to ever pass up a sample or conversation with the sample giver-outer, so naturally, I tried what they had to offer and I loved it!!! They were sampling this great lentil, feta, and bruschetta cold salad.  Didn’t take much peer pressure for me to give in and buy all of the ingredients myself.  This is a cheap, easy meal that only contains three ingredients and no effort whatsoever.

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I thought I would share the recipe just in case anyone is ever at Trader Joe’s and needs an easy side dish, appetizer, something to snack on with crackers or chips, or something extra to put in a lunch.  I also thought it was one of those things that would be easy to put your own spin on.  Some variations could be:

Sweet pepper bruschetta, goat cheese, and lentils

Pear, blue cheese, and lentil salad

Or even warm lentil recipes like curried lentils or lentils with squash or sweet potatoes

As you can see- lentils can be very versatile, which is great because they are really good for you with their high levels of fiber, iron, and protein.  Check out this easy recipe below…

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Trader Joe’s Lentil Salad:

  • 1 Package of Pre-Cooked Trader Joe’s Lentils (refrigerated)
  • ½ Jar Trader Joe’s Bruschetta
  • 1-6oz. Package of Crumbled Feta Cheese
  • Optional-Crackers/Chips to serve with

Mix all together & serve.  If serving warm, heat up lentils separately beforehand.

Adapted From: Trader Joe’s

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

Taste & Tell- Chicago Style

This weekend I took a trip to visit some of my closest friends in Chicago. It was an ideal trip for me considering it consisted a lot of eating, drinking, and spending time with friends- couldn’t have asked for a better three days there. Chicago is such a cool city and it has AMAZING food. With an abundance of trendy little restaurants all over the place, I really had to refrain myself from trying every place in site.

My friends were really good at taking me to some of their favorite new places since they’ve moved there, and I’ve laid out some of my favorite from the weekend for you below:

  • Best Drink: Sofie Beer
  • Best Chicago Food Staple: Chicago Style Hot Dog
  • Best Brunch Dish: Humboldt Hash
  • Best Restaurant Atmosphere: Summer House Santa Monica
  • Best Dessert: Chocolate Peanut Butter Milkshake

Best Drink: Sofie Beer

From: Goose Island Beer Garden

Located: Wrigleyville

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Why: This beer is hands down my favorite beer of all time. I was so excited when we ran into the Goose Island Beer Garden and I was able to have Sofie from where it’s created. This is a Saison/ Farmhouse ale and the best way I can describe it is a citrus-y beer that has somewhat of a champagne taste to it. It can be found at random grocery stores and sometimes on menus at restaurants so if you do come across it- I highly recommend you give it a try.


Best Chicago Food Staple: Chicago Style Hot Dog

From: The Weiner Circle

Located: Lincoln Park

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Why: When you’re in Chicago, you have to try some of the Chicago staples: Deep dish, hot dogs, Italian beef sandwich, etc. I have had the famous Portillos the previous time I was in Chicago, but this time I tried somewhere different… and with a more lively atmosphere. At The Weiner Circle, you can get the Chicago style hot dog with all of the toppings- mustard, relish, pickles, onions, tomatoes, celery salt, and sport peppers. That hot dog may sound overwhelming, but add in the late night crowd and verbal abuse amongst customer’s and workers and your experience will be one for the books.


Best Brunch Dish: Humboldt Hash

From: HASH Chicago

Located: Wicker Park

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Why: At a place called HASH, I felt it would only be necessary to order one of their signature hash dishes. This is a really tiny, neat place on the border of Wicker Park, Ukranian Village, and Humboldt Park with a chalkboard full of mouthwatering brunch menu items. My cousin’s wife recommended to me the Humboldt hash and after seeing on the menu that it contains eggs, black beans, chorizo, hominy, tomatoes, and Chihuahua cheese served with this bomb salsa Verde, I knew it was fate. Hands down, greatest way to end my trip in Chicago.


Best Restaurant Atmosphere: Summer House Santa Monica

Located: Lincoln Park

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Why: Number one, this place is in Lincoln Park, which I think is one of the coolest neighborhoods in Chicago. Looking past that, when you walk into this restaurant, you literally feel like you just stepped into a beach house in Chicago. Wait- taking a step back, when you walk in there is this amazing showcase of massive pastries that you can purchase… If only I was greeted like that everywhere I went. The lighting, atmosphere, decorations, servers, and menu make this place a must-stop for brunch, lunch, dinner, or even drinks.


Best Dessert: Chocolate Peanut Butter Milkshake

From: Oberweis

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Why: Because- who doesn’t like a large milkshake made from creamy, rich, chocolate ice cream and served in their signature milkshake glass topped with whipped cream and a cherry?! Oberweis has a neat, old fashioned feel to their store and the way they serve their milkshakes make them taste that much better. Great way to top off any night in Chicago.

If you get the chance- check out some of these great places if ever in Chicago!

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

Supermarket Superstars 9-19

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Every once in a while, I thought it would be a nice change up for me to post some of my favorite grocery store finds.  As I mentioned earlier this week, my current traveling situation causes me to not buy many foods to make nice dinners.  Traveling DOES though get me to buy some good snacks at the grocery to help me with my busy schedule.  Here’s a list of some of my favorite snacks that I bought for this week:

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It would be hard for me not to post something about KIND bars since I did promote the brand for a whole year.  These bars are awesome snacks to have on the go and they come in so many different flavors. My current favorites are the Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Almond & the Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter ones… I have an addiction to chocolate.  These can be used as breakfast bars, snack bars, and are even said to help lose weight if eaten between meals to suppress appetites.  You also know what ingredients are in these all natural bars- unlike some bars (cough Cliff, Luna, cough).  Get some of these for yourself from your grocery’s organic section.

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One of my favorite late night snacks is popcorn.  Mind you, I know I probably shouldn’t be eating late night anyways, but sometimes it’s hard not to when you’re posted up on the couch watching TV with your friends.  This Buttery Kettle Corn does just the trick- and it’s also like 200 calories… so I would consider that pretty guilt-free.  This is also a great snack to share with people- if you’re into that kind of thing.

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Taking a healthier route here, I can’t go to the grocery without buying some Honeycrisp apples in the fall.  These are the best snack or addition to meals and they’re also huge and filling.  Another healthy snack I almost always pick up from the grocery is carrots.  The problem is, though, that I cannot have carrots without dip, so one of my favorite veggie dip brand is Otria which makes theirs with a Greek yogurt base.  They have great flavors like roasted red pepper, an onion one, and feta and dill.

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To top off almost all of my meals I need some form of chocolate.  When I went to Target recently, I found these amazing Lindt Hello chocolate minis.  They come in cookies & cream, crunchy nougat, caramel brownie, and strawberry cheesecake and are the best little dessert I have found in a while.  Don’t pass these up if you ever see them at the grocery store- you will regret it.

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Look for more supermarket superstars in the future and check out these ones the next time you’re at the store!

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie

Weekly Crème De La Crumb 9-18

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«If only veggies smelled like bacon… and tasted like chocolate»

Check out some of these awesome recipes I found this week from these awesome food bloggers!

Bite size pie on a stick… GENIUS- Key Lime Pie on a Stick

Cant figure out if this coconut lime chicken burrito sounds better- Coconut Lime Chicken Burrito

OR this enchilada style burrito!?- Enchilada Style Burritos

As if arancini wasn’t amazing enough- this adds in Boursin cheese to make it even that much better – Crispy Boursin Arancini

White bean, chicken, and corn chowder for a chilly day- White Bean Chicken & Corn Chowder

Switch up those plain old mashed potatoes with this recipe- Roasted Red Pepper & Feta Mashed Potatoes

I NEED this soup NOW… Brie cheddar & apple beer soup!?!?!??- Brie Cheddar & Apple Beer Soup

Fall flavored cupcakes for caramel apple lovers- Caramel Apple Cupcakes

They may be messy, but these Philly cheese steak sliders look AWESOME- Philly Cheese Steak Sliders

Cool/easy twist on regular mozz sticks- Chili Lime Nacho Mozzarella Sticks

 

Have a sweet day!

-Kelcie