snack bites 2.0

hi there!  

you might remember these from a while ago.  i still love them, but i made up a little variation that i might like even better.  i love chia seeds!  they are great for natural energy and their addition make these powerful little protein snacks even better (and provide a little crunch).

1 cup uncooked oats
1/2 cup coconut flakes
1/4 cup ground flaxseed
3/4 cup peanut butter (or any nut butter)
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips
1/4 cup chia seeds

mix well, roll into balls and enjoy!  
store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. 


blueberry breakfast bars

these little goodies are perfect for breakfast or individually wrapped up for an anytime snack.  the better preserves you use, the better your bars will be.  i'm hooked on my farmer's market's!

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/4 cup rolled oats
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup butter, room temp. and cubed
1 egg white, lightly beaten
3/4 cup fresh blueberries
10. oz blueberry preserves

preheat oven to 350.  line a 9" by 13" pan with parchment paper, making sure there's overhang to lift the baked bars out of the pan.

mix together flours, brown sugar, oats, baking powder, salt, and baking soda.  blend in cubed butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  measure out 1 1/2 cups and reserve for later.

mix egg white into remaining mixture.  gently mix in berries.  pat mixture into pan, using your fingers to press it evenly over bottom of the pan.  bake for 10 minutes.

spread preserves over crust, and sprinkle reserved mixture evenly over preserves.  bake for 30 to 35 minutes more until golden brown.

let cool in pan for 10 minutes.  lift out using parchment paper and cut into 12 pieces.


minion cookies

i've always bought the boy's valentines for their classes, but we wanted to do something special this year. these minion cookies look hard to make, but they're not!  i made 50 in under an hour, and when they were dry we just put them in little self-sealing plastic envelopes (from walmart) and stapled a yellow card to each one with cute messages like "you're one in a minion" and "be my despicable me". (the boys came up with that one.)

pepperidge farm milano cookies
store bought blue and black cookie icing (in the tubes)
candy eyes (on baking aisle) 

they were fun to make, and a big hit!


granola 101

if i had to choose one food to eat for the rest of my life, it would have to be granola.  it's sweet, satisfying, and i could quite easily eat it 3 meals a day.  i like my granola heavy on the oats.  i don't like it when there are big sugary clumps, so the first time i made this homemade granola, i knew i would never be without the perfect granola ever again. :)

i took a screenshot of the recipe from a blog over 6 months ago, and i have NO IDEA which blog i was reading. i wish i could give them credit because i have enjoyed making many batches of this granola.  i'm sure you could make all kinds of variations, but i'm hooked on the original:

3 cups rolled oats
1 TBL. ground flax seeds
1 TBL. cinnamon
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
3/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 tsp. salt
2 TBL. unsalted butter, melted

preheat oven to 325 degrees and spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.

combine all ingredients in large bowl.  spread onto baking sheet and bake for 40-45 minutes (or browned to your liking) stirring every 15 minutes or so.

let cool and store in air tight container.  i have no idea what the shelf like would be, because it never makes it more than a week around here.  we eat it every day on greek yogurt and i use it in my homemade granola bars...recipe coming soon!


natural cough remedy

it's that time of year again when coughs linger on keep us awake at night.  i came across this recipe on pinterest, had all of the ingredients and decided to give it a try.  friends, it works.  every time.  when my boys have a cough, i put this on their feet at night, covered with socks, and they are always able to sleep through the night cough free! it is good for daytime use too. 

  • 5 tbsp. extra-virgin coconut oil (a natural anti-viral)
  • 1 tbsp. sweet almond oil (you could use safflower, olive, etc. if you want)
  • 2 tbsp. beeswax
  • 10 drops tea tree essential oil (also a natural anti-viral
  • 20 drops rosemary essential oil (aids breathing)
in a small pan, melt the coconut oil and sweet almond oil.  add the beeswax, chopped up (or in granules) and stir until melted.  add the essential oils and stir to combine.  pour into a 4 oz. glass jar and allow to cool.  store at room temperature to make it easier to spread on little feet.  


carrot soup

it's time for rich fall soups!  i was obsessed with pumpkin soup until an unfortunate morning sickness incident 5 years ago.  i STILL cannot eat any kind of heated pumpkin.  that's right...no pumpkin spice lattes, warm pumpkin pie, or my beloved pumpkin soup.  

when i saw this recipe on one of my favorite blogs, the bleubird blog, i knew i had to try it, and i'm in love. i've missed my warm, creamy soup to go with my grilled cheeses in the fall, and it's just as good to me as this favorite, and nice to have in the rotation.


8-10 unpeeled organic carrots, washed and sliced
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
6 cups chicken broth
4 Tbsp. butter
1 1/2 tsp. marjoram
1 1/2 tsp. parsley
1 tsp. thyme
1 1/2 tsp. dill
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 cup heavy cream

melt butter in large pot.  add onion, stirring occasionally until golden.  add carrots, chicken stock and spices. bring to a boil then reduce heat to low and and simmer for 45 minutes.  blend in small batches in a blender until smooth.  (for this step, don't completely seal the top of the blender.  just hold on top with a towel and blend OR use an immersion blender, if you have one.)  return to pot and add the heavy cream and stir until heated through. 


two ingredient breakfast smoothie

THIS and any frozen fruit, blended.
every morning with my egg white omelet. :)
my favorite fruit to use is strawberries...or blueberries.