Delicious Caramel Apple Dip

Delicious Caramel Apple Dip - You're going to want to find a spoon, I mean an apple or two, to try this delicious Caramel Apple Dip!

Apple season is nearly here!  Nothing beats the taste and crunch of fresh local apples. :)  This in year in anticipation of all the delicious apple varieties, we’re going to head to a local orchard to grab as many varieties as possible to do a taste test!  I think my daughter will have fun choosing her favourite apple.  It will be a fun learning experience and a great tradition we will surely love.

Not that fresh local apples need anything to make them taste better, but this year I’ll be making a batch of this delicious Caramel Apple Dip to go with our apple slices. This dip is seriously amazing! The sweetness of this dip is just perfect paired with apples (or a spoon… 😉 ).

Caramel apple dip

DELICIOUS CARAMEL APPLE DIP  You're going to want to find a spoon, I mean an apple or two, to try this delicious Caramel Apple Dip!INGREDIENTS

For Caramel

  • 15-20 unwrapped caramels (depending how rich you want your dip)
  • 1/4 cup milk

For Dip

  • 8oz package cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup of vanilla Greek yogurt

DELICIOUS CARAMEL APPLE DIP  You're going to want to find a spoon, I mean an apple or two, to try this delicious Caramel Apple Dip!DIRECTIONS

1. Cream together cream cheese, yogurt, brown sugar, and vanilla until mixed well
2. On medium heat, combine caramels and 1/4 cup of milk stirring occasionally until it hits a boil
3. Pour caramel over your cream cheese dip and mix together gently ( don’t mix in all the way, you want to be able to see the caramel)
4. Serve with a mix of your favorite apples

DELICIOUS CARAMEL APPLE DIP  You're going to want to find a spoon, I mean an apple or two, to try this delicious Caramel Apple Dip!I want to know, what is your favorite apple variety?

Caramel Apple Dip
 
Ingredients
  • For Caramel
  • 15-20 unwrapped caramels (depending how rich you want your dip)
  • ¼ cup milk (whichever % you like)
  • For Dip
  • 8oz package cream cheese
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla
  • ½ cup of vanilla Greek yogurt
Instructions
  1. Cream together cream cheese, yogurt, brown sugar, and vanilla until mixed well
  2. On medium heat, combine caramels and ¼ cup of milk stirring occasionally until it hits a boil
  3. Pour caramel over your cream cheese dip and mix together gently ( don't mix in all the way, you want to be able to see the caramel)
  4. Serve with a mix of your favorite apples

Delicious Grilled Peaches

You've got to try these Grilled Peaches. They're delicious and ridiculously easy to make!

I’ve got a ridiculously easy, but super delicious recipe for you today!  It’s Grilled Peaches!  Perfect for the summer peach season to finish off a tasty BBQ. I particularly like these grilled peaches because they feel like a treat without having any really unhealthy ingredients.

Like I said, these are so simple…  All you need are:

  • Peaches – cut in half
  • Coconut sugar (optional), you can use honey or maple syrup too
Here’s how to make them:
  1. Once the peaches are cut in half, sprinkle a tsp of sugar on top of each one and allow to sit for a minute.
  2. Coat the grill with PAM spray and grill the peaches face down,  until you can hear them sizzle ( between 2 to 4 minutes)
  3. Check on them at that time to see if they have the grill marks.  If so, they’re done!

If you’d like, you can serve these with ice cream or whipped cream. We prefer them just like this, as it’s naturally sweet and then there are no extra calories! :)  Enjoy!

You've got to try these Grilled Peaches. They're delicious and ridiculously easy to make!

Homemade Oreos

If you are fan of the famous Oreo cookie, you will love this Homemade Oreo Cookie recipe. The filling is the to die for! No need to buy store bought, you can save some money and make these at home.

If you are fan of the famous Oreo cookie, you will love this Homemade Oreo Cookie recipe. The filling is the to die for! No need to buy store bought, you can save some money and make these at home.

Homemade Oreos

We’re big fans of the Oreo cookie in this house. I personally love the chocolate ones while my daughter and husband prefer the vanilla ones. (but will eat any available flavor!)  They’re even called “Grandpa cookies” at my parent’s house and Sienna requests a “Grandpa cookie” when we’re there for Sunday dinner each week. I think it’s the cutest.

Just like the real Oreos, these cookies are fun to twist apart so you can lick the filling. As I prefer to do. My daughter just takes tiny bites of the entire cookie. I’m pretty sure my husband just throws the whole cookie in his mouth…

I’m pretty pleased with how close these resemble the taste of the real thing. You’re gonna love them!

INGREDIENTS

Cookies:

  • 1 1/4 cup Flour
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/4 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 cup softened Butter
  • 1 Egg

Filling:

  • 1/4 cup softened Butter
  • 1/4 cup Shortening
  • 2 cups Powdered Sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract

Oreo CollageDIRECTIONS

  1. Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, salt and sugar.
  2. Beat in the butter and egg until dough comes together.
  3. Place between 2 sheets of parchment paper and roll out to betwwen 1/8 and 1/4 inch thick.
  4. Place in freezer for 15 minutes.
  5. Preheat oven to 375.
  6. Use a 2″ circle cookie cutter to make cookies.
  7. Place on parchment lined cookie sheet.
  8. Bake for 9 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool completely.
  10. Cream together butter, vanilla and sugar.
  11. Gradually beat in the sugar.
  12. Continue beating until fluffy.
  13. Transfer filling to a piping bag with a round tip.
  14. Pipe filling onto a cookie to nearly cover.
  15. Place another cookie on top of the filling and lightly press.

cookiesfilling

Homemade Oreos
Serves: 20-25 Cookies
 
Ingredients
  • Cookies:
  • 1¼ cup Flour
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • ½ cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • ¼ tsp Baking Powder
  • ¼ tsp Salt
  • ½ cup softened Butter
  • 1 Egg
  • Filling:
  • ¼ cup softened Butter
  • ¼ cup Shortening
  • 2 cup Powdered Sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, salt and sugar.
  2. Beat in the butter and egg until dough comes together.
  3. Place between 2 sheets of parchment paper and roll out to between ⅛ and ¼ inch thick.
  4. Place in freezer for 15 minutes.
  5. Preheat oven to 375.
  6. Use a 2" cookie cutter and make cookies.
  7. Place on parchment lined cookie sheet.
  8. Bake for 9 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool completely.
  10. Cream together butter, vanilla and sugar.
  11. Gradually beat in the sugar.
  12. Continue beating until fluffy.
  13. Transfer filling to piping bag with round tip.
  14. Pipe filling onto a cookie to nearly cover.
  15. Place another cookie on top of the filling and lightly press.

Now, The all important question.  How do you like to eat your Oreo cookies?

If you are fan of the famous Oreo cookie, you will love this Homemade Oreo Cookie recipe. The filling is the to die for! No need to buy store bought, you can save some money and make these at home.

 

Cold Pesto Salad

This Cold Pesto Salad is sure to please young and young at heart at all your summer gatherings!

I’m starting to have quite the abundance of fresh basil growing outside in my little garden!  Makes me so happy because I can put it to good use in delicious recipes!  I love adding it to my Greek salads, but now I especially love using it in the cold pesto salad!  Nothing beats a pasta salad with pesto on a hot summer day.  This recipes is also a crowd pleaser. I brought it to a birthday party and there was hardly any left!

pesto salad 2Cold Pesto Salad Ingredients 

  • 12 oz package of Farfalle (bowtie) pasta
  • 1/2 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, washed and halved
  • 1 Cup basil leaves
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1/3 Cup fresh Parmesan, grated + extra as garnish
  • 1/3 Cup olive oil

pesto saladDirections

  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions, about 10-12 minutes on a rolling boil, stirring occasionally.
  2. While the pasta is cooking, place the fresh basil leaves, garlic, 1/3 cup of fresh Parmesan and olive oil in a food processor (or blender) and pulse until the pesto reaches your desired consistency.
  3. Remove the pasta from heat and drain. Rinse the pasta under cold water and let it cool a few minutes.
  4. Combine the cooked pasta, tomatoes and fresh pesto. Mix well.
  5. Place in the fridge 1-2 hours to cool then serve.
  6. Garnish with fresh grated Parmesan.

*Makes 4-5 servings.

Doesn’t it look delicious?  Try it out for your next BBQ or picnic!

This Cold Pesto Salad is sure to please young and young at heart at all your summer gatherings!

Cold Pesto Salad
Serves: 4-5
 
This Cold Pesto Salad is sure to please young and young at heart at all your summer gatherings!
Ingredients
  • 12 oz package of Farfalle (bowtie) pasta
  • ½ pint grape or cherry tomatoes, washed and halved
  • 1 C. basil leaves
  • 1 tbs. minced garlic
  • ⅓ C. fresh parmesan grated + extra as garnish
  • ⅓ C. olive oil
Instructions
  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions, about 10-12 minutes on a rolling boil, stirring occasionally.
  2. While the pasta is cooking, place the fresh basil leaves, garlic, ⅓ cup of fresh Parmesan and olive oil in a food processor (or blender) and pulse until the pesto reaches your desired consistency.
  3. Remove the pasta from heat and drain. Rinse the pasta under cold water and let it cool a few minutes.
  4. Combine the cooked pasta, tomatoes and fresh pesto. Mix well.
  5. Place in the fridge 1-2 hours to cool then serve.
  6. Garnish with fresh grated Parmesan.

 

Free July 2015 Monthly Menu Planner

E.H.M.-July-2015-Monthly-Meal-Planner-1

Download a free Monthly Meal Planner for the entire month of July!  Included in your download you will find all of this:

  • Meal Planner for 7/1/15 – 7/4/15
  • Meal Planner for 7/5/15 – 7/11/15
  • Meal Planner for 7/12/15 – 7/18/15
  • Meal Planner for 7/19/15 – 7/25/15
  • Meal Planner for 7/25/15 – 7/31/15
  • July Flexible Meals
  • July Flexible Meal Calendars
  • July Blank Week
  • Dessert Menu for July 2015
  • Dessert Calendar for July 2015
  • Fill In the Blank Ingredients List – Entire Month
  • Fill in the Blank Ingredients List – Weekly
  • Blank Family Shopping List (Food, Sundries, you name it included)
  • Blank Costco Shopping List

Download your menu plan now.

Healthy No Bake Energy Bites

These Healthy No Bake Energy Bites come together really easily and are sure to satisfy your snack craving!

These Healthy No Bake Energy Bites come together really easily and are sure to satisfy your snack craving!

I have a friend that is expecting a new baby any day now, so I wanted to help her fill her freezer a little bit! :)  When I was in the hospital with my daughter, a friend brought by these delicious healthy no-bake energy bites. These were the perfect gift for a new mom!  I was so happy to not have to think about what to snack on when I was trying to get everything with a new baby sorted out.

These were so good I requested the recipe so I could enjoy them again. (And gift them to others.)

Healthy No Bake Energy Bites

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats (raw)
  • 2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut, toasted and cooled (optional)
  • 1/2 cup ground golden flaxseed meal
  • 6 Tbsp chocolate chip minis

In Process 2DIRECTIONS

  1. In a medium-mixing bowl stir together peanut butter, honey and vanilla extract.
  2. Combine remaining ingredients and stir until evenly coated.
  3. Transfer mixture to refrigerator and chill until set.
  4. Remove from refrigerator and shape into 1-inch balls.
  5. Store in refrigerator in an airtight container. Enjoy!

I sure hope you enjoy these as much as we do!

Healthy No Bake Energy Bites
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ⅓ cup honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats (raw)
  • ⅔ cup sweetened shredded coconut, toasted and cooled (optional)
  • ½ cup ground golden flaxseed meal
  • 6 Tbsp chocolate chip minis
Instructions
  1. In a medium-mixing bowl stir together peanut butter, honey and vanilla extract.
  2. Combine remaining ingredients and stir until evenly coated.
  3. Transfer mixture to refrigerator and chill until set.
  4. Remove from refrigerator and shape into 1-inch balls.
  5. Store in refrigerator in an airtight container. Enjoy!

 

Homemade Graham Crackers

These Homemade Graham Crackers are super simple and so much better than store bought. You can enjoy them by themselves for a snack or even make some homemade s’mores.

These Homemade Graham Crackers are super simple and so much better than store bought. You can enjoy them by themselves for a snack or even make some homemade s’mores.

Homemade Graham Crackers

I must admit, normally I buy crackers from the store, but trying my hand at making homemade graham crackers really intrigued me. Since they’re quite costly to buy, and I figured we might be going through a few boxes this summer making S’mores, I jumped right in to make them.

Homemade graham crackers are so simple and need very little effort. It’s easy to make a couple of batches in no time. You you will need is whole wheat flour, all purpose flour, brown sugar, honey, butter, cinnamon, and baking soda!

INGREDIENTS

1 cup softened Butter
3/4 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 tsp Salt
3 tbsp Honey
1 1/2 cup Flour
1 1/2 cup Wheat Flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Cinnamon

graham crackers1DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon and honey. Mix until blended.
  3. Gradually add in flour and wheat flour alternating between them until incorporated.
  4. Roll out dough between sheets of wax or parchment paper to about 1/8″ thickness.
  5. Cut/score into individual cracker sizes and use a skewer or toothpick to make holes in the crackers.
  6. Place in freezer for 30 minutes to harden.
  7. Line a cookie sheet with silicone or parchment paper.
  8. Separate cookies and place on prepared sheet.
  9. Bake until crackers begin to brown, about 10 minutes.

graham crackers2graham crackers3

How do you like to enjoy graham crackers?  Check out my simple recipe for oven S’Mores if you’re looking for a way to use your delicious homemade graham crackers!

Homemade Graham Crackers
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup softened Butter
  • ¾ cup Brown Sugar
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 3 tbsp Honey
  • 1½ cup all purpose Flour
  • 1½ cup Wheat Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon and honey. Mix until blended.
  3. Gradually add in flour and wheat flour alternating between them until incorporated.
  4. Roll out dough between sheets of wax or parchment paper to about ⅛" thickness.
  5. Cut/score into individual cracker sizes and use a skewer or toothpick to make holes in the crackers.
  6. Place in freezer for 30 minutes to harden.
  7. Line a cookie sheet with silicone or parchment paper.
  8. Separate cookies and place on prepared sheet.
  9. Bake until crackers begin to brown, about 10 minutes.

These Homemade Graham Crackers are super simple and so much better than store bought. You can enjoy them by themselves for a snack or even make some homemade s’mores.

Take Them a Meal

ttamlogotoptight

I came across this really neat website that is perfect for those of you that may find yourself in a situation of organizing meals for a family you may know.

TakeThemaMeal.com is a free service that allows you to create a meal schedule for a family in need. It’s easy to do!  One person creates a profile for the family with instructions for drop off and dates needed.  Then you are provided a link that you can share so that others can sign up for the days they can prepare a meal for the family. No more time consuming phone calls!

You can read the TakeThemaMeal.com story here.

How neat is that?

The Eating from the Pantry & Freezer Challenge: Week 4

Welcome to the fourth  and final week of the Eating from The Pantry & Freezer Challenge!  Here’s what it’s all about or you can read the post from Week 3.

For those of you who have been doing this challenge all along, way to go!  You’ve reached the end!  And to those of you who have joined in at some point, even for a week, thank you!

I’m sure that by this point you’ve seen some significant savings or you’ve even noticed that you’ve been shopping less often.  Even just a week or two of eating what you already have can make a big difference and help you put extra money towards larger grocery purchases, debt payments, or simply to help save up for something you’d like to buy!

Here’s my update from last week

There’s actually a bit more room in our freezers!  Enough room that my father-in-law was able to store some stuff while he was looking for a new fridge/freezer after his broke.

But, as I suspected, I can keep going on this challenge for a while yet since we’ve still got plenty of food!

In total I spent about $25 this week on milk, eggs, produce and yogurt.  I’m quite pleased that I’ve mostly been able to stay under my $25 limit for the week!

I’ve still got plenty of chicken, ground beef, steaks and a few already made freezer meals.  So, we’ll be having some chicken dishes, and most likely some beef dishes! 😛

Here’s what we’ll be eating this week:

My mother-in-law is here with us this week so the plan may not go according to what I have written. But I’m going to try my best!

Monday:

  • Breakfast:  Refrigerator Oatmeal
  • Lunch:  Smoothies
  • Dinner:  Marinated steak, pasta salad, grilled veggies

Tuesday:

Wednesday:

Thursday:

  • Breakfast:  Cereal, fruit
  • Lunch: Egg salad sandwich
  • Dinner:  Roast beef, roasted potatoes, steamed veggies

Friday:

Saturday:

Sunday:

  • Brunch:  Waffles
  • Dinner:  At my Parents!

Now it’s your turn, what will you be eating this week?

Now that the challenge is coming to a close, has the challenge been difficult for you?  What types of meals have frequented your table?  And most importantly, did you get things cleaned out and meet your goals?

The Eating from the Pantry & Freezer Challenge: Week 3

Welcome to the third week of the Eating from The Pantry & Freezer Challenge!  Here’s what it’s all about or you can read the post from Week 2.

Here’s my update from last week

Well, this is a bit embarrassing, but not many of the dinners I had planned for last week got made! Sienna and I were on our own for a couple evenings and we had a couple of rough days so I opted for the drive thru. Another evening we were invited for dinner to a friends house.

The meals we managed to eat were breakfast every morning, egg salad sandwiches, pancakes, peanutty Asian wraps (twice), and smoothies.  Needless to say, we still have quite a bit of stuff in our pantry and freezer!

This week should be different.  My Mother-in-Law is coming to visit for a week so we should be going through quite a bit of stuff.

Getting creative with what you have left

At this point in the challenge you may have come to a point where you need to be creative when it comes to using up what you have an abundance of and filling the spaces of those things you wish you could go out and buy.

There are a few great websites out there that will come up with some recipes for the ingredients you already have on hand.  All Recipes is one of them.  Simply input the ingredients you have and the ingredients you don’t have and it will pull up a list of recipes you could make!  Recipe Matcher, Supercook and Ingredient Chef are also good resources!

Here’s what we’ll be eating this week:

Since not many of my planned meal got made last week, you’ll see some recycled meals on this week’s menu.   To complete my meals this week, I spent about $17 on yogurt, produce, milk and eggs.

Monday:

Tuesday:

Wednesday:

  • Breakfast:  Banana chocolate chip muffins, yogurt, fruit
  • Lunch:  Leftovers
  • Dinner:  Perogies and Sausage, steamed veggies (needs to be a quick dinner)

Thursday:

  • Breakfast:  refrigerated oatmeal
  • Lunch:  Potato soup
  • Dinner: Marinated steak, pasta salad. grilled veggies

Friday:

Saturday:

  • Brunch: Bacon, eggs, hashbrowns, toast
  • Dinner:  We’re headed to a baby shower/birthday party (I have to bring a salad)

Sunday:

Now it’s your turn, what’s your update and what will you be eating this week?