happy sprinkle low guilt sugar cookies!

There is something about sprinkles that make me feel super happy. Not all sprinkles, but most of them, especially those of a rainbow variety. They are so cheerful and bright. Yesterday, when I was making these sugar cookies, I literally felt over joyed when I looked at my cookie sheet and saw the little round sprinkle covered treats that I was about to bake. I hope when you make these, you feel that way too. These sugar cookies are crispy on the outside and soft as cake on the inside and the sprinkles add a nice texture to each bite. The real kicker about these sugar cookies, is they are low in fat. I replaced some of the butter with greek yogurt, and you cannot tell one single bit!! To be honest, they turned out way better that I expected, and I am thrilled about it! Any cookie is great, but a lower guilt, sprinkle cookie really tops the charts.

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What you need:

  • 1 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 tbs plain greek yogurt
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 beaten egg (save the rest for a scramble the next day!)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sprinkles (approximately)

Preheat oven to 375 and prepare a baking sheet (I used two) with parchment.

Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, cream together butter, sugar and greek yogurt. Add egg and vanilla. Pour your dry ingredients into your wet and mix until combined.

Pour your sprinkles into a wide topped bowl. Roll rounded tablespoons of dough in hands and then roll through sprinkles and place on baking sheet.

Bake 8-10 minutes. Allow cookies to sit on cookie sheet for about 2 mins and then transfer to a wire rack,

ENJOY!

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tortilla pizzas!

I feel sort of stupid taking the time to post about something as simple as tortilla pizzas, but they are seriously my favorite easy snack. They are relatively healthy, are totally customizable and are delicious! Personally, I like mine with marinara, mozzarella and mushrooms, but you can really do any combo of sauce, cheese and topping that suits your tastes. Here is the recipe for my favorite tortilla pIzza.

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What you need:

  • 1 tortilla
  • 1/8 cup marinara sauce
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 10 crimini mushroom slices (optional)

Preheat oven to 350. Pour sauce onto tortilla, top with cheese and place mushrooms evenly spaced around your “pizza”. Bake right on the oven grates for 10 mins. ENJOY!

protein punch banana strawberry smoothie!

As my pregnancy progresses, by belly gets bigger, but my appetite has been getting smaller! Being someone who loves to eat, I HATE IT!! I guess it’s a good thing, though, because I’ve already gained a whole bunch of weight and maybe now it’ll just even out. Rather than make my usual egg, bagel, sausage and fruit breakfast I looked to the lighter side of things while perusing my kitchen yesterday morning and saw that I still had frozen strawberries in my freezer and I decided to make smoothies!! With added almond butter and greek yogurt, this smoothie packs a real punch of protein, and is also incredibly smooth. It honesty had the best texture! Nice and thick and super creamy! This recipe will make you one smoothie. If you don’t have frozen fruit, use fresh and add ice, if you do have frozen fruit, don’t add ice – simple as that!

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What you need:

  • Banana, broken into pieces
  •  1/2 cup strawberries
  • 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 heaping tbs almond butter
  • 1 tbs honey
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 4-5 ice cubes (optional)

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

ENJOY!

chewy oatmeal raisin cookies!

Oatmeal raisin cookies are not my favorite cookie. They aren’t even one of my favorites, but whenever I make them I think so myself, “Wow, I forgot how good these are” or “I guess a cookie doesn’t need chocolate in it after all”. You may be wondering why I even decided to make them – and to be honest, I couldn’t tell you – but I am glad that I did. They are chewy and buttery and the perfect amount of raisin-y and even though they aren’t my favorite cookie, they still are incredible – I can’t help but eat three at a time.

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What you need:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1.5 cups oats
  • 3/4 cup raisins.

Preheat oven to 350. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and set aside. In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugars until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla. Add your dry ingredients and mix until flour is no longer visible. Add your oats and raisins by hand with a spoon. Scoop rounded tablespoons onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes. Cool on wire rack. ENJOY!

personal apple crisps!

Last night was the end of my mother’s visit from NJ. We had such a nice time while she was here. She helped me set up the food and decorations for my baby shower, bought me and baby Evelyn a few nice things, ate out at a few restaurants, went to the Pittock Mansion and finally, I got to cook and bake for her! Because my mom lives so far away, it is very rare that we get to enjoy a home cooked meal together. When I was growing up, my dad did the cooking, not my mom and it is only recently that I started to embrace my love of cooking so I feel that I probably have only made her 4 or 5 meals. Last night, I made us some chicken, rice and asparagus – nothing special, but it was delicious! We all licked our plates clean. For dessert, I made personal apple crisps – and I must say, for how easy they were to make, they sure did impress! Both my mother and Benny were upset that I only made us each a 2 oz ramekin, but portion control is good. I would rather finish my dessert wanting more than wishing I hadn’t eaten it at all!!

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What you need:

  • 1 granny smith apple, peeled and sliced
  • 1/8 tsp sugar
  • 1tbs melted butter
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 2 tbs oats
  • 1 tbs flour
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • vanilla ice cream (optional)

Preheat oven to 350.

Separate apple slices into 3 2oz ramekins. Distribute sugar evenly on top of each dish. In a separate bowl, combine melted butter, brown sugar and flour. Add oats and cinnamon. Distribute topping evenly on top of each dish. Bake for 35-40 mins. Allow to cool a bit and top with ice cream! (We had coconut bliss tropical vanilla.) ENJOY!

winter veggie coconut curry!

Nothing beats a nice warm, hearty stew on a cold night. It is practically effortless to make, inexpensive and is easy to change up. The last few times I made a beef stew, I went traditional but remembering that I had some coconut milk on hand from when I had made coconut milk cupcakes,  I decided to give a coconut curry a shot! I just changed up a few things in my usual stew recipe and ended up with a delicious and different dinner that I know I will make time and time again. Feel free to change up the vegetables in the recipe – I personally cannot eat potatoes, so I went for sweet potatoes. I also think parsnips could be a nice addition! Give it a shot – let me know what you come up with! 🙂

What you need:

  • 1lb stew meat
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 tbs curry powder
  • 1/2 tbs cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 can coconut milk
  • 1 cup broth (I used veggie)
  • 15 baby carrots
  • 1 small sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 1/2 tsp cornstarch

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Bring a pot of water to a boil and toss in your stew beef for 2 minutes. Drain and set aside. In the same pot, heat oil over medium heat and add in your onion. Cook for 2-3 minutes than toss your beef back into the pot. Cook another 2-3 minutes. Add in your broth, coconut milk, curry powder, cumin and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for an hour and a half. Add your carrots and sweet potato, return cover and cook another 30 minutes. Mix your cornstarch with a small amount of water and add to your curry. Cook uncovered until thickened to your liking. Serve over rice. ENJOY!!!

cinnamon sugar donut muffins!

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY FRIENDS ❤

I hope you all are enjoying your day and celebrating love where ever you might find it. In case you are feeling glum and lonely, I’ve got a great recipe for you all today – they’re so yummy and perfect they can turn any frown upside down and warm a cold heart. I made these for myself the other morning when I woke up on the wrong side of the bed, and I assure you, one donut later, I wasn’t feeling too blue anymore.

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What you need:

  • 5 tbs butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • egg
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tbs melted butter
  • 1/2 cup cinnamon sugar

Preheat oven to 350.

Grease a mini muffin pan.

In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add egg and milk. In a seperate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Add to your wet mixture until just combined. DO NOT OVER MIX. The batter will be thick.

Scoop into mini muffin cups – 2/3 full. Bake for 15 minutes.

In the meantime, set up your melted butter and cinnamon sugar in bowls. When muffins are cool enough to touch, dip the top in butter and then in cinnamon sugar. Repeat until ever muffin is topped with cinnamon sugar.

ENJOY!

coconut cupcakes!

Holy moly coconut happiness!! Last night I made the most delicious cupcakes EVER and it was all just a big experiment. They are sweet and almost sticky, but the right kind of sticky and the frosting is so incredible you might just want to die after you taste it. I guess you could say, I really liked these cupcakes, and I’m betting that you will too. This recipe makes you 6 cupcakes with enough frosting to be extravagant. Go ahead, go crazy.

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What you need:

CUPCAKES

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk (I used light, but I’ll bet regular is even better)
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla

FROSTING

  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350 and line a muffin tin with 6 liners.

Combine flour, salt and baking powder – set aside.

Cream together butter and sugar and whip until fluffy. Add egg and mix until combined. Pour in flour mixture alternately with coconut milk. Add vanilla. Fill each muffin tin 2/3 of the way with your batter. Bake for 25 mins. Allow to cool.

In the meantime, whip together all of your frosting ingredients until fluffy. Put in a frosting bag if you want or just slab it on top of the cakes. Top with shredded coconut.

ENJOY!

chia seed pudding!

When I first found out I was having a baby, my friend, Elle, gave me a book called “100 Healthiest Foods During Pregnancy”. It has a ton of great info on what to eat each trimester to give your baby what he/she needs most. During the 2nd trimester, chia seeds are part of the list. I started buying Mama Chia drinks from new seasons, and quickly grew a love for these weird slimy little seeds. Now, I am in my third trimester and there is a whole new slew of foods I should be eating – but I’m not ready to say goodbye to the chia seed, and that is probably OK. They are SOOOOOO healthy. They’re packed with omega-3s and all sorts of other good stuff. When I was at New Seasons the other day, I saw that they carried prepackaged chia seed pudding and I felt intrigued, but didn’t buy any. I love chia seeds and I love pudding – why didn’t I buy any? So I could make my own and I did and I loved it. I can’t wait to try other variations!! This will make you two servings of pudding. Feel free to top with shredded coconut, berries, add cocoa powder – whatever! The possibilities are absolutely endless.

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What you need:

  • 4 tbs chia seeds
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1-2 tbs agave (depending on how sweet you want it)

Put all ingredients into a tupperware container. Shake up. Store in fridge for 2-3 hours.

ENJOY!

one bowl brownies!

Today is day two of being “snowed in” here in Portland, OR. To be honest, I’m pretty sure my car could handle the snow, but I like the idea of being trapped at home with nothing to do but be cozy, bake treats, read and watch tv – so that’s what I’m doing. Yesterday afternoon, when the snow first started coming down, my husband and I took a walk to New Seasons to grab some essentials so that we could stay home happily during the storm. I was planning on making homemade tootsie tolls so I checked the ingredient list and saw that all I needed was powdered sugar – I grabbed some along with our other groceries only to realize when I got home, I needed tapioca starch too! GRRRRRRR! super annoying…I was craving chocolate, so I went ahead and made some brownies. Even though I love to bake, I hate to clean up and brownie mess is no joke so I opted for a one bowl brownie with the help of my microwave! These brownies are super yummy, fudgy inside, crisp outside goodness. I made them in a 9″ round pan as I can’t find my 8×8 anywhere!! WAHHHHH! I’m pretty sure they’ll turn out great in either pan size – just don’t go any bigger.

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What you need:

  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 and 1/4 sticks (10 tbs )
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup flour

Preheat oven to 325.

Prepare your pan with parchment paper along the bottom and grease the sides with butter. Set aside.

Put your butter, sugar and cocoa in a medium microwave safe bowl and heat in 1 min increments, stirring in between until butter is melted (apx 3 times). Allow to cool a bit, then add vanilla and your eggs, one at a time. Whisk together until smooth. Add flour and salt and whisk until just combined. Pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake 20-25 mins. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely in pan before removing. Cut and serve.

(I sprinkled powdered sugar on top to match the weather outside – you can too!)