Loaded Carne Asada Chips

Loaded Carne Asada Chips

Remember yesterday when I made those crispy, crunchy homemade chips? Good - because they are the base for today's totally calorie splurge. Hey - you gotta do it every once in a while, right?!? These loaded carne asada chips are perfect for a game day appetizer or when entertaining friends, but who am I kidding - I make stuff like this all the time in the middle of the week when I don't feel like making a full on meal (remember these pulled pork leftover nachos). Don't worry - my boyfriend has no issues with that! So these, like all nachos are super simple and so very delicious! I started with a base of the homemade potato chips. What I loved about these chips is they stayed super crunchy even when I piled on all those delicious toppings. Nothing is worse than a soggy nacho chip - boo! I piled mine way high, but you could also spread them out on a cookie sheet. Once you have your ...

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Foolproof Homemade Potato Chips

Foolproof Homemade Potato Chips

Is there anything better than crispy, homemade potato chips? I could stuff my face with these babies all day long!  They're crunchy and fried just to the perfect golden brown, sprinkled with sea salt and served while still hot.  Does it get any better than that?!?  Plus, these keep their signature crunch for way longer than store bought!  And so easy to make! To start, you'll need three to four russet potatoes, washed and unpeeled.  You could for sure peel these, but I find it totally unnecessary and the peel adds great flavor.  After you've cleaned your potatoes, simply slice into 1/4" thick slices.  I used a mandoline because it's so much easier than doing it by hand plus it also ensures that your chips will be the same thickness and will cook at the same speed.  You can pick up a mandoline at any kitchen supply store. Once you've cut all your potatoes into slices, put them in ...

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Infused Ice Cubes

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Do you feel like you are forever trying to drink more water? The benefits of staying hydrated include everything from increased circulation and healthier skin to energized muscles and keeping your daily caloric intake in control. But some days you’d rather drink a caramel, extra shot coffee than guzzle down the required ounces of H20. Recommended consumption includes everything from dividing your body weight in half and drinking that many ounces, to eight - eight ounce glasses, or drinking as much water each day that you rarely feel thirst. Your fridge is probably stocked with an assortment of fruit, vegetables and herbs. Why not use those natural ingredients to kick up your water in a unique way that doesn't require a lot of work? Check out my ice cube blends here. ...

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Strawberry Buttermilk Donuts with Strawberry Glaze

Strawberry Buttermilk Donuts with Strawberry Glaze

I know I've told you strawberries are my favorite fruit, I even told you an elaborate story of how I almost choked to death on the most delicious, juicy strawberry.  I've incorporated them in so many recipes, so it was only a matter of time before I would stick them into donuts.  These donuts - Strawberry Buttermilk Donuts with Strawberry Glaze! A couple weeks back I was approached to work on a roundup of "pink" recipes for Breast Cancer Awareness month and what better to pink up a recipe than naturally with juicy strawberries. These donuts are super light and airy, made with buttermilk and sweetened with honey and sugar.  So delicious - but my favorite part are the huge chunks of fresh strawberries. I can't express how easy it is to make donuts.  I bought a donut pan earlier this summer and have since opened up a donut shop in my kitchen - or you would've thought so by the mass ...

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Coconut Hot Chocolate with Coconut Whipped Cream

Coconut Hot Chocolate with Coconut Whipped Cream

Ok, I know - I have been all over the place with my posts.  One day it's popsicles because it's 100 degrees here and the next I'm posting chicken pot pie because I'm a weirdo and I'm craving it even though I have fans running like crazy and am still wearing shorts. Don't be surprised - today is no less weird.  You should know better than to expect normal, seasonal posts from me.  Most of the time I just make what I'm craving and what sounds good to me at the moment, and while that might be popsicles in October or hot chocolate in July, you'll just have to bear with me. Today I start a brand new job - I've had the past week off work and it has been ahhh-mazing!  I haven't had an entire week off work in over two years!  Usually I am taking a long weekend here or there, most likely traveling to see family or friends, with no real time to hang at home. This week has been the ...

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Mini Chicken Pot Pie with Puff Pastry Crust

Mini Chicken Pot Pies with Puff Pastry Crust

Do you ever make something that is so delicious that you surprise yourself?  That's how I felt about these chicken pot pies! I haven't had a homemade chicken pot pie in for-evah!  Actually, I haven't had any chicken pot pie in too long to remember, but lately I have been craving it.  The thing is - it hasn't looked too much like fall around here.  Seriously, Tuesday I went to the beach and actually got a little burnt. So I was faced with a dillema - to chicken pot pie or not too?  Well, my stomach had the final word so on a 90 degree October day I was roasting chicken in the oven and stirring a simmering pot over a stove. But it was so worth it!  These mini chicken pot pies are full of incredible flavors like rosemary and thyme plus fresh carrots, mushrooms and peas all finished with a creamy chicken and white wine sauce.  You guys - so good! And the crust - flaky layers of ...

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Pumpkin Cheesecake Popsicles with Graham Cracker Crust

Pumpkin Cheesecake Popsicles with Graham Cracker Crust

I know, it's October and I'm still making popsicles!  I can explain.  It's been crazy, uncomfortably hot in LA - 90s every day, no breeze and no air conditioning.  And while I love to make soups, breads and super cozy, comfort food this time of year, the thought of turning my stove on makes me want to cry.  I've only done it once this week, and that was for the most delicious chicken pot pie with puff pastry that I'm sharing tomorrow - so come back! These popsicles are creamy and rich like cheesecake, but with the delicious flavor of pumpkin!  And the graham cracker crust - my favorite part!  It's super sweet and crumbly; I'm usually taking a bite of the popsicle and then biting the graham cracker crust. These are super easy to whip up - just mix all the popsicle ingredients and then crush your graham cracker and stuff them in your molds.  The hardest part is waiting while they ...

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Pumpkin Oatmeal Smoothies

Pumpkin Oatmeal Smoothie

This pumpkin oatmeal smoothie is thick, creamy and delicious - full of pumpkin puree, oatmeal, greek yogurt, and banana with a sprinkling of pumpkin pie spice.  This is the perfect breakfast for your fall mornings. I usually tend not to share much of my personal life here, but I think that's something I'm going to try and change.  I know its one of the reasons I read and follow so many of the blogs that I do.  I love getting to know the person behind the pictures, like we become real internet fraands. So this week I'm on a little bit of a vacation.  I don't know if it's funny how it happened or a little embarrassing, either way I'm really happy with how things went down.  Let me start from the beginning. Last Monday I put in my two week notice at work.  I had been searching for a new job for a while, and I had had a couple offers, but nothing that would put me in a better ...

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Whole Wheat Apple Cider Donuts

Whole Wheat Apple Cider Donuts

These whole wheat apple cider donuts are soft and cakey, generously tossed in cinnamon and sugar, and baked!  Such a delicious fall treat with a few healthy twists! So, if you haven’t noticed I bought a cake pan a while back.  And since then I’ve made these baked cinnamon and sugar donuts, these pumpkin spice latte donuts and now these baked whole wheat apple cider donuts.  (I also deep fried some blueberry donuts that have no associate with my donut pan). You’d think was running a regular donut shop out of my kitchen (I’m not – I kind of wish I was though). I can’t believe how easy baked donuts are to whip up.  I’m talking mix your ingredients together, stick in a donut pan and cook. Yeah, that’s it.  I took the extra step of sprinkling them with cinnamon and sugar – which took another two minutes. And then you have warm, cakey donuts covered in sweet, sticky sugar and ...

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Deep Dish Apple Pie Bars With Quinoa Crust

Deep Dish Apple Pie Bars with Quinoa Crust

These deep dish caramel apple pie bars are full of apples and drizzled with sweet, homemade salted caramel.  But the best part – the quinoa crust!  Just quinoa, apple cider and cinnamon make this delicious treat a little healthier. I don’t know if I’ve ever spilled my guts about my feelings for pie crust before, but to be truthful, it just isn’t my jam.  Of course, I’ve had some that is pretty good, but it general I don’t really like it and if I get a slice of pie I mostly eat around it. I do love apple pie though, but mostly for the filling.  I love the soft, sweet apples flavored with cinnamon and nutmeg.  I’m usually digging my fork right in between the crust to pull these babies out.  So these deep dish apple pie bars with a quinoa crust are right up my alley. I know I’ve gone a little crazy on the quinoa (remember those quinoa buffalo strips and quinoa chocolate chip ...

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Cinnamon and Sugar Cloverleaf Rolls

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These giant cloverleaf rolls are sweet and buttery, covered in cinnamon and sugar with a sweet surprise in each clover.  So delicious – the perfect breakfast sweet roll or a delicious dessert! So I totally meant to post this Monday – but now it’s Wednesday and I’m just getting around to it.  I feel like my blogging schedule has been totally off, which is mostly because my life schedule is totally out of whack! This weekend I did quite a bit of baking – which I’ll be sharing with you the rest of the week (I swear).  I go through phases of baking and then cooking, and then back to baking.  I need to even things out a bit because one week I’ll have all sweet treat hanging around the house just begging to be eaten (not good), and another I’ll have tons of real food leftovers.  Those weeks are kind of my favorite because I rarely have to cook dinner. I was really surprised at how ...

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Banh Mi Meatball Bites

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I don’t know what my thing is with Vietnamese food, but seriously, I cannot get enough of it.  I’ve scarfed down a whole plate full of these pork and shrimp spring rolls dipped in massive amounts of peanut sauce and this salad reminds me a lot of Vietnamese cold noodle salads. So, it shouldn’t be surprising that I’ve recreated the classic banh mi sandwich into delicious banh mi meatball bites. These pork meatballs are stuffed with sautéed shallots and garlic, fish sauce and of course, spicy sriracha.  Once cooked, simply top them with fresh cilantro, sliced jalapeno and pickled carrots. I dipped mine in more sriracha sauce (can you really ever have too much sriracha) and that’s it! These were the perfect snack for watching football on Sunday, but these banh mi bites would also be excellent as a party appetizer or the meatballs could even be stuffed into a crusty French roll ...

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Mini Polenta Pizzas

Mini Polenta Pizza

It's fall, and officially football season.  Which is a big deal at our house - not myself, necessarily, mostly my boyfriend.  And it's not just Sunday - it's also Monday, and Thursday and don't forget college football on Saturday. It's kind of nice because summer always feels like a whirl wind; no one is home, we're with friends, or at the beach, or both.  It's difficult to blog in the summer because no one wants to spend all Sunday inside, especially with a hot oven. But fall comes (at least I'm hoping it'll come soon - it has been deathly hot in Los Angeles this past week) and football starts and we have a reason to stay home. Football season also means lots of game time snacks.  We usually do lots of chips and salsa, or guacamole.  I've recently been trying to kick things up while also being a little more calorie conscious (like these quinoa crusted buffalo strips). Last ...

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Soft-Bake Quinoa Chocolate Chip Cookies

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My favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe by far is Cook’s Illustrated Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie. I don’t know if it’s the browned butter, the elaborate mixing of the eggs, or the soft interior, crispy exterior that gets me every time. And while I could eat the whole batch by my lonesome, I shouldn’t… no one should.  But I wanted to create a cookie recipe that still felt like a treat, but was a little healthier. Of course, there are tons of healthy “cookie” recipes.  Yes – I’m air quoting cookie as I write this.  It’s not a cookie if there’s no sugar.  If you want me to believe apple sauce tastes like dark brown sugar – you are nuts and we will not be friends. And please don’t try to sell me on these no-bake ones either.  It is mush and I don’t want it. But what if I substitute a few items to make a really delicious soft-bake cookie that still tastes like a treat but is also ...

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