Friday, December 9, 2016

Muddy Buddies

I think Muddy Buddies are one of the classic things that everyone has tried, and basically everyone loves. I've slightly adapted the original Chex recipe... because the original does not have enough of the chocolate/peanut butter coating! (Of course, you know I would think something needs more chocolate & peanut butter!)

I will admit, though--for years, growing up, we always called this puppy chow! I didn't start calling it muddy buddies until maybe middle school. I kept referring to it as puppy chow, and a few friends looked at me like I was crazy, they had absolutely no idea what I was talking about. ;)

If you usually do the traditional recipe, I really recommend trying this. The extra coating is great!

Remember, I love comments! That makes me feel loved. :) What's your favorite Chex Mix or Muddy Buddy recipe?

Muddy Buddies
  • 9 cups Chex
  • 1 ½ cups Semisweet chocolate chips
  • ¾ cups peanut butter
  • ¼ cups + 2 tablespoons margarine/butter
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Vanilla
  • 3 cups powdered sugar

  1. Pour cereal into a large bowl, set aside. In a large bowl, combine chocolate chips, peanut butter, and margarine. Microwave until smooth, stir in vanilla. Pour chocolate mixture over cereal, stirring until all pieces are evenly coated.
  2. Pour cereal mixture into a large container with powdered sugar. Shake until all pieces are well-coated, spread on waxed paper to cool.
  3. Sprinkle with extra powdered sugar, if needed.

Approximately 13 cups
<30 minutes
Nutrition Facts *I calculate nutrition facts for reference only, this is not done scientifically

218 calories per ½ cup

Source (for original): Chex

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Gingerbread Cheesecake Dip

I've been doing a lot of gingerbread items this fall... It's not something I normally do, and I'm not always a big fan, but it's just SO Christmas! And, let's be honest-- I love baking for other people, and it makes other people happy for me to make gingerbread things!

I saw this, and thought it would be something easy and tasty. Not time consuming, so it wouldn't be too complicated to do in the morning. (Mornings have actually been easier for me lately... sometimes.) 

This dip is VERY gingerbread-y. If you aren't a fan of gingerbread, you probably won't like this--but, you should make it anyways. The gingerbread people in your life will love you for it!

Oh, and FYI- while some dips don't really need the time to 'set' in the fridge, this one does. I actually add more cool whip than the original recommends, because it seems too thin without it. (The taste is still very strong though, so don't worry about that!)

Printable Recipe
Gingerbread Cheesecake Dip


  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 8 ounces Cool Whip
  • Graham crackers, animal crackers, etc. for serving

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the sugars and molasses; beat on medium speed until smooth and combined. Add the spices and mix until combined.
  2. Beat in the Cool Whip until combined.
  3. Transfer dip to a serving bowl and chill until ready to serve. Serve with graham crackers, animal crackers, etc. 
Approx 4 cups (estimate)
15 minutes + cooling
Nutrition Facts *I calculate nutrition facts for reference only, this is not done scientifically
116/ ¼ cup (estimate)

Source (for original): Food, Folks & Fun

Friday, December 2, 2016

Sugared Cranberries

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! We did! We went to my mom's this year (we alternate years with Nate's family and my family.) Great food, time with family, and a happy announcement.... we are expecting baby #3 in June!! We are very excited. The boys are, too! Gabriel said he wanted another brother, but now he has decided he wants a sister. Adrian.... I don't think he grasps yet how much his little world is going to change in June. ;)

This pregnancy is the reason for the current lack of posts... between the nausea, and the exhaustion, I have not been able to stay up past the boys' bedtime to do much of anything. Basic cleaning has been a challenge so far, haha! The exhaustion is getting better now, so I promise to work harder at getting posts up 2-3 times per week. :)

I made, in addition to french silk pie (recipe coming soon!) and pumpkin pie, some sugared cranberries for Thanksgiving this year. I had never had them before, but the recipe looked good so I thought I'd give it a shot!

These were definitely a hit-- with some people! Nate wasn't a fan, but mama and I (and some of my coworkers) loved them. The sugar coating gets fairly firm, so they kinda pop when you bite into them. Perfect! And the tart & sweet combo is great. My only complaint is that they don't last long--one day, and then they don't taste the same. So, either make a small batch or make sure they get eaten!

Remember, comments are loved! What's your favorite cranberry recipe?

Printable Recipe
Sugared Cranberries


  • 2 cups water
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 4 cups fresh cranberries

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring the water to a boil. Stir in two cups of sugar until sugar dissolves, then remove from heat. Let cool for a few minutes. 
  2. Meanwhile, rinse cranberries and set aside in a medium bowl.
  3. Once the syrup is slightly cooler, pour over the cranberries. Let them sit for a few hours or overnight. 
  4. Meanwhile, pour remaining sugar in a large bowl. Remove the cranberries from the syrup, then add to the sugar. Toss until the cranberries until coated. Place on a parchment paper or cookie sheet, and let dry for a few hours.
  5. Best if served that day. 
4 cups
Nutrition Facts *I calculate nutrition facts for reference only, this is not done scientifically

295 calories/ ½ cup (assuming a waste of 1 cup sugar)

Source (for original): Tabler Party of Two

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Quick Rolls

With Thanksgiving coming up tomorrow, I thought it would be good to post a fun roll recipe! These rolls are great- fluffy, tasty, and bake up fast!

For Thanksgiving with our family, I'm making my Perfect Pumpkin Pie, and something else sweet. I haven't decided yet, but knowing me--it will probably be something with chocolate. ;) Mama already has everything else taken care of. (Thanksgiving with my mom is always awesome!)

Remember, comments are loved! What's your usual food duty for Thanksgiving?

Printable Recipe
(This picture shows them more dense than they are--I initially tried them with a shorter rise time, but they are much better with the longer time! I just keep forgetting to take another picture...)
Quick Rolls

  • 1 ¼ cup warm water
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 3 ½ cups bread flour 

  1. Preheat oven to 400°. Grease a 9”x13” pan; set aside.
  2. In large mixing bowl, combine the water, oil, yeast, and sugar. Allow it to rest for 15 minutes. Using dough hook, mix in the salt, egg, and flour.
  3. Knead with hook for a few minutes until well incorporated and dough is soft and smooth.
  4. Form dough into 12 balls, place in prepared pan, and allow to rest for 20 minutes. 
  5. Bake for 10-20 minutes or until golden brown.

12 rolls
30-45 minutes
Nutrition Facts

Source (for original): Your Home Based Mom

Monday, November 21, 2016

Gingerbread Cookies

I am, in general, not a fan of gingerbread cookies. I can have one or two, but they are not my thing. Nate is usually a fan though, and I like to try to do the "typical" seasonal things. I have a recipe that I've made before, but these are slightly different. Also, those are the ones I made for my mom to use on her advent calendar.... and there's something about the fact that they can last for years that throws me off. Time for a new, different recipe! :)

These, as advertised on the blog I got them from, don't spread. I like that about them. I was iffy to use butter, in my experience it tends to cause more issues than using Crisco, especially with spreading. (I know I've talked about my love for Crisco before.)  However, I am pretty fond of these. I think the lack of baking powder/baking soda helps, too. 

They are fairly crunchy, but soften a lot if you add frosting. Frosting is totally optional, though!

Remember, comments are loved! Tell me about your favorite gingerbread recipes & ideas!

Printable Recipe

Gingerbread Cookies

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup molasses
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  2. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together. Do not overmix. Add the egg, and mix until incorporated.
  3. Add the molasses, and vanilla; mix just until incorporated.
  4. Whisk the flour, salt, and spices together in a separate bowl. Slowly mix in the flour mixture.
  5. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface, to ¼" thickness. Place on prepared baking sheet, and bake for 8-9 minutes.

Approximately 27 cookies
45 minutes
Nutrition Facts

Source (for original): The Kitchen Paper

Cream Cheese Icing

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk

  1. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and milk to desired consistency. 
  2. Spread over cookies. 

5 minutes
Nutrition Facts

Source (for original): Love Grows Wild

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Cheesecake Crescent Bars

Most of my dessert recipes, my husband doesn't really care about. I bake desserts at least once or twice a week, so I guess he gets tired of them. (I don't understand that, but hey. I try not to judge.)

However, there are a few recipes in my book that he LOVES. Traditional cheesecake (no picture, so no blog post on that yet), Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies, and this! Nate always approves when I make these! I would make them more often, but the main problem is that I don't keep crescents in the house unless I have a particular recipe I am going to use them for. I am not a big fan (of the crescents, not this! I love this!), so I don't buy them that often. I think I need to work on that... Nate puts up with all my crazy baking, I should try to make his favorites more often. ;)

On to the actual bars... these are perfect, cream cheese gooeyness right out of the oven, or perfect once they are cool & have been put in the fridge! I honestly don't have a favorite... I take them either way! Once they are cool they are slightly more irresistible, though... Warm and gooey it's easy to just eat a few. Cool.... not so easy. ;)

Remember, comments are loved! What's your favorite cream cheese style dessert?

Cheesecake Crescent Bars

  • 2 cans crescent rolls
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • ¼ cup cinnamon & sugar (approximate)

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease a 9”x13” baking dish.
  2. Unroll and spread one can of crescents on the bottom the prepared baking dish. In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla. Spread over crescents in baking dish. 
  3. Unroll and layer remaining crescents over cream cheese layer. Spread butter on top of crescents; sprinkle generously with cinnamon & sugar.
  4. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until browned & bubbly.

Approximately 28 bars
30 minutes
Nutrition Facts

Source (for original): my mom, I have no idea where she got this!

Monday, November 14, 2016

Banana Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chip Muffins

These are fairly similar to my other banana muffin recipes (Banana Peanut Butter Oatmeal, Healthier Banana Muffins/Bread, & Nutella Oat Banana Muffins), but with some slight variances. Honestly, I could probably cut down to just 1 or 2 banana muffin recipes... but I truly can't decide which recipe I like the most. So, I just keep them all! This recipe I like because of the chips in it.... they aren't overly sweet, but the chips add just enough!

I originally made an extra large batch of these with the plan of sending some as a snack for Gabriel's preschool... until he woke up sick. Poor baby, this is the first day of preschool he's missed, and I think he's pretty disappointed. So....since he isn't going to school, I have about 30 muffins in my house right now. Adrian ate 2 for breakfast (scratch that, while I was typing this he decided he wanted another one... in addition to the 4 smoky links he ate. Growth spurt, anyone?), which makes up for the fact that Gabriel has no appetite... but I hope my coworkers like them, I need somebody to eat more! My family cannot go through that many! (Well, Adrian might, at this rate...)

Check out the recipe, and let me know what you think!
Comments are loved--what is your favorite banana muffin/bread recipe?

Banana Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chip Muffins

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 ½ cups mashed bananas
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup peanut butter chips (or any other chips) This time I used a combination of peanut butter, mini chocolate chip, and semi-sweet, to empty some partial bags I had! They are great!

  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Grease/line with paper 24 count muffin tins.
  2. In large bowl, stir together the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the mashed bananas, eggs, vanilla and applesauce. Add the banana mixture to the flour mixture, stirring just until the dry ingredients are moistened. Carefully mix in peanut butter chips. 
  3. Spoon batter into prepared tins. Bake for 12 to 18 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center muffin comes out clean. Let cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove muffins from pan and let cool on wire rack.

22-24 muffins
30 minutes
Nutrition Facts
164 (based on 22 muffins)

Source (for original): Food