Friday, May 29, 2009

Layered Chicken Cordon Blue Casserole

Wednesday night I was planning on making our favorite chicken cordon blues. But my kids were clingy and I just didn't have the time to flatten the chicken, dip it in the bowls, roll it up, etc. I was lucky to get my chicken trimmed. So I decided to layer the ingredients to save time and we all loved it! Addition: the next time I made it I added in a layer of diced pineapples! Yummy!

4-6 chicken breasts, cut into whatever size pieces you want (strips, nuggets, etc. :)
swiss, provolone, or mozzarella cheese
sliced pineapples if desired
Garlic if desired

Directions: Place chicken in pan; sprinkle with garlic powder. Chop up ham and cover chicken. Cover ham with pineapples and cheese. Bake at 350 for about 45 min, til chicken juices run clear.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Easy BarBQ ribs

GirlTalk (a fabulous blog!)had an easy recipe for BarBQ ribs and I wanted to remember it:


  • 2 1/2 pounds country style pork ribs
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1 cup barbeque sauce


  1. Place ribs in a large pot with enough water to cover. Season with garlic powder, black pepper and salt. Bring water to a boil, and cook ribs until tender.
  2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
  3. Remove ribs from pot, and place them in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Pour barbeque sauce over ribs. Cover dish with aluminum foil, and bake in the preheated oven for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until internal temperature of pork has reached 160 degrees F (70 degrees C).

Home-made "Lara Bars"

Mark really needs filling snacks he can eat on the run at work. So I was excited to see these healthy bars on one of my favorite blogs. She gives 2 great varieties. My family loves them! And I didn't measure anything (I hardly ever do - it just makes too many dishes :) So I threw in a bunch of dates, almond butter, coconut oil, shredded unsweetened coconut, home-made granola, and yes, even a few organic chocolate chips :) YUMMY! I thought they were good enough without any sweetener. And they really do give me a boost when I need it. I call them my Power Balls because I actually shaped them into balls and froze them so I could grab one whenever I needed it. I eat them straight from the freezer! (I think they are actually better frozen because the coconut oil melts and gets greasy if I leave them at room temperature too long.) Oh, and the best part? My husband loves them as well! He takes them with him for some extra energy when he plays tennis. Here are the original recipes:

Better than Lara Bars

10-12 pitted dates
1/2 cup natural peanut butter (more may be necessary)
handful of raisins
1 cup of shredded coconut (plus more for coating)
1 TBS Raw Honey (or other liquid sweetener)]
Liquid Stevia to taste
handful of chopped crispy nuts (macadamia nuts or almonds are great)
1/3 cup of coconut oil or butter

1) Place dates into food processor and process until you have a paste.

2) Add raisins, peanut butter, honey, and coconut and process until mixture forms a big mass.

3) Add your coconut oil now, as well as the protein powder, if using. Mixture may seem a bit "wet" from the coconut oil. This is okay,but if it seems too runny, add more shredded coconut. Taste for sweetness, and add a few drops of stevia (or more honey) to acheive desired sweetness.

4) At this point, add the chopped nuts.

5) Form pastey mass into balls or bars and roll in shredded coconut (or rapadura or cocoa).

6) Place bars on parchment-lined baking sheet and chill in freezer for about 10 minutes.

Notes: This is a pretty forgiving and versatile recipe. Try subbing raisins for any dried fruit (apricots or cherries would be great!) The coconut oil is not absolutely essential to the texture, either. You can get by without it, but it adds some good nutritional properties! You also don't need nuts, the peanut butter is enough!

These are amazing! They are full of healthy fats, complex carbs, and protein! Enjoy for breakfast on the run or for dessert with a glass of milk!

Cinnabun Lara Bars!
crispy nuts (I use almonds)
raisins (any dried fruit will do)
coconut oil


1) Place about 2 cups of crispy almonds into the food processor. Add 1.5 - 2 cups of raisins and process until you have a paste. It should be sticky.

2) Add about 2 TBS (or more) of coconut oil and process until smooth.

3) Add salt (to taste) and about 2 tsp of cinnamon (add more if you need to). Ginger and cloves add a nice flavor too.

4) Add about 1-1.5 cups of shredded coconut until you have more of a thick, dry paste. You are looking for a rounded, "doughnut-shape" in your food processor.

5) Remove dough, press into parchment-lined jelly roll pan. Place in freezer for 20 minutes.


Sunday, May 17, 2009

Healthy, Yummy Chocolate Frosting

One of my favorite blogs posted this recipe for chocolate frosting and I can't wait to try it! I'm planning to use it on Karis' birthday cake :)

Chocolate Ganache Frosting
Because this frosting is based off of coconut oil, it may start to melt in warm weather. Keep that in mind if bringing it on a picnic on a hot day. Since the frosting is more like the texture of a ganache, it makes a rustic frosting. Many use ganache for the filling between two layer cakes, and a fluffier frosting on the outside.You could definitely play around with the ratio of sweetener to make it less sweet for a more bittersweet chocolate ganache.

1 cup of cocoa powder
3/4 cup of virgin coconut oil
1/2 cup of honey
dash or two of sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

1-Gently melt the coconut oil in a saucepan (you don’t want to heat it, just melt it)

2-In a food processor, combine all of the ingredients and pulse until well combined.

3-Scrape into a small bowl and place in the freezer or refrigerator until it has hardened to desired consistency. It took about 15 minutes in my freezer.

4-You can use a hand mixer to fluff the frosting up (you may need to do this if the frosting has become too stiff as well).

Spread on desired baked good and enjoy!

Chocolate Orange Ganache Variation: Add 1 tablespoon orange zest with the rest of the ingredients. Continue on with the rest of the directions.

Recipe found at:

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Healthy Chocolate Breakfast Cake

Did someone say "chocolate for breakfast?" Count me in! I was excited to find this on one of my favorite blogs. Its not tooo chocolatety or sweet, but perfect for fixing that chocolate craving first thing in the morning :) My toddler loves muffins and they freeze well, so thats what I made. The recipe doesn't make too much, so I'm going to double the recipe from now on and freeze a bunch for a quick breakfast.

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
3/4 - 1 cup natural sweetener
1/2 cup butter or coconut oil (or combination of both), in its solid state
1-2 Tbsp cocoa powder (as desired, we use 2 Tbsp)
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp baking powder
dash of salt
dash of cloves
1/2 cup nuts, if desired
1 cup cultured buttermilk, kefir, whey, yogurt (or your preferred acid medium for soaking)

SOAKING STEP: In a large bowl, combine flour and acid medium (buttermilk, kefir, whey or yogurt, as desired). Cover and allow to soak for 12-24 hours.

After soaking, combine remaining ingredients. Pour into a greased 8 x 8 pan and cover with chopped nuts, if desired. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.

If you want to skip out on the soaking, follow these directions:

In a large bowl, combine the flour and sugar; cut in the butter/coconut oil until crumbly. Add cocoa, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg, salt and cloves; mix well. Make a well in the center; pour in the buttermilk and stir until moistened. Transfer to a greased 8 x8 baking pan and sprinkle with nuts. Bake as instructed above.

Recipe found at:

This post is part of KK's SUYL breakfasts!

Pineapple marinade

I've been wanting to switch from our normal Italian dressing marinade to something more healthy and found this recipe at one of my favorite blogs. I LOVE anything with pineapple so I think I'm going to love it! I hope to try it this week :)

• 10oz canned pineapple in its juice (about 1/2 a can)
• 1/2 sweet onion roughly chopped
• 1/4 cup soy sauce
• 3 cloves garlic
• 1/2 cup olive oil

Blend until thoroughly mixed. Marinate the chicken for several hours. Bake at 375 for 45 minutes to an hour. To grill chicken, heat the grill to medium heat, cook for three minutes per side, then move to indirect heat and grill for an additional 45 minutes, with the lid closed. As leg quarters tend to be fattier than breasts, watch for flare ups.
Use a thermometer to ensure the leg quarters reach 165F.

When grilling, I like to use some of the marinade as a baste. It’s important to note that this is marinade I set aside for this purpose. Never reuse any sauce or marinade that has touched raw meat.

Recipe found at:

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Zesty CHicken Packets

My friend Sandy makes these and they are yummy! I think these would be even better grilled!

4 chicken breasts
1 green pepper, sliced
1 red pepper, sliced
1 yellow pepper, sliced
1 onion, sliced
Italian dressing
Four pieces of aluminum foil

In each piece of aluminum foil, put 1 tsp of olive oil and 1 pat of butter
Put in chicken, peppers and onions
Salt and pepper
Cover with Zesty Italian dressing
Bake on 400 for 1 hr

Friday, May 1, 2009

Grilled Silver Turtles

My friend Amanda makes these and they are so easy and so good! Put a hamburger pattie on top of a slice of onion, then slice some potato to put on top of the hamburger (and add carrots if you like them :) Wrap em up in foil and grill 15 minutes on one side, 10 on the other...The meat comes out sooo tender.