2 corn tortillas filled with taco meat

Taco Meat

Everyone loves taco night, right? It’s a delicious meal that’s easy enough to make, so everyone goes away happy! This taco meat recipe is a great start for that! Ground beef browned in a skillet, with taco seasonings, water and salsa added. Cook it down until thick and use it in all your taco night favorites! Taco seasoning for ground beef For a long time, I made my taco meat using those pre-measured packets of seasoning, but I really needed something more flexible. The packets are made for a pound of meat. What if you want to make 1 ½

stack of 4 almond milk pancakes with butter and syrup

Almond Milk Pancakes

I have a recipe for old fashioned pancakes which has long been my go-to. But I rarely stock milk in the house anymore, and have transitioned to using almond milk in my coffee, etc. So one day I wondered, can you make pancakes with almond milk? Would this be a good milk substitute for pancakes? The answer is: yes. Most definitely. 😀 Ingredients needed for these dairy free pancakes Flour – nothing fancy, regular all-purpose flour works just fine Baking powder Sugar Salt Butter Egg Almond milk – you can use plain, but I always use vanilla flavored. The milk

bunny butt pancake of pancakes and sliced strawberries arranged like a bunny's butt

Bunny Butt Pancakes

Ok, I couldn’t resist. Even though I already made bunny cinnamon rolls and bunny dinner rolls, I just had to make one more bunny for Easter: Bunny Butt Pancakes! Ingredients needed Pancake batter (I used almond milk pancake batter, but feel free to use your favorite) Strawberries Whipped cream Chocolate chips (optional) How to make the pancakes You will need to make pancakes in two different sizes. Half will be a normal round pancake. I use ¼ cup of batter to make these pancakes. I conveniently have measuring cups with long handles that make this a little easier. Use a

pan fried asparagus on a gold rimmed plate

Pan Fried Asparagus

Spring is here and that means asparagus season! And even though we can find asparagus pretty much year-round in the grocery stores these days, I still equate it with the Spring season. Asparagus, like all veggies, tastes just a little bit better in its natural season. And today I have a simple but delicious way to prepare it: pan fried asparagus. Ingredients needed Fresh asparagus Olive oil Butter Shallot Garlic Salt and pepper How to pan fry asparagus Start with prepping your asparagus. Wash it well and break off the woody end. You can cut if you’d prefer but I

Easter bunny cinnamon roll on a white plate with pastel pretend grass

Easter Bunny Cinnamon Rolls

It’s time to have a little fun with holiday food. Sometimes this means making food of specific colors, but this time I went for a shape. And I took the easy route and used pre-made dough to make these Easter bunny cinnamon rolls. It’s all about the cuteness! Ingredients needed Refrigerated Cinnamon Roll dough (12.4 oz) Raisins Grands vs regular cinnamon rolls I stick with the Pillsbury brand rolls for these, and I have used both the regular size as well as the “Grands.” To be honest, if I’m simply making cinnamon rolls for our eating pleasure, the Grands are

3 Cinnamon bunnies on edible easter grass

Edible Easter Grass

When making fun little sweets, it’s always good to plan ahead regarding how they will be served. In the case of Easter, I feel like almost anything will look right on a bed of grass. And certainly you can use the stuff from the store, but you can also make your own edible Easter grass! Ingredients needed It’s pretty simple really. Coconut and food coloring. Oh, and a little water. I went with green food coloring for a classic look but I also think it would be fun to make some pink and light blue and have a mixed pastel

bunny crescent roll on pastel easter grass

Easter Bunny Dinner Rolls (Crescent rolls)

Sula and Spice If your Easter dinner is like many, you spend your time planning the main and several side dishes and salads. Delicious and wonderful food, and a nice roll will complete the meal. Is your family, like mine, fans of crescent rolls? Here’s an easy way to take crescent roll dough and make the most fun rolls ever: Easter bunny dinner rolls. Ingredients needed for these dinner rolls Crescent dough – sheet Raisins – optional This is a short list. Only 2 ingredients needed, and one is optional. The only tricky part is that you want the crescent

Puff Pastry galette on a small plate

Asparagus and Mushroom Puff Pastry Galette

I’ve been wanting to try to make a galette for a while now, and even though sweet dessert-type galettes are all the rage, I really wanted a savory version. I decided to try an asparagus and mushroom galette, with a puff pastry crust. It was a hit! Ingredients needed A galette can be customized very easily, once you get the hang of it. These are the ingredients I used but feel free to adjust, especially with the cheeses – see variation suggestions below. Asparagus Mushrooms Shallot Mascarpone cheese Parmesan cheese Fresh mozzarella cheese Thyme How to make this puff pastry

Keto Tartar sauce in a small red bowl

Keto Tartar Sauce

A couple years ago, I got tired of always pulling a bottle of expired tartar sauce out of my pantry. I swear the stuff has the shortest shelf life! So I decided to start to make my own homemade tartar sauce. You know what? It was even easier than I thought. And since I had complete control over the ingredients, I could make it low carb: keto tartar sauce! Ingredients needed Mayo Dill pickle (and some pickle juice from the jar) Lemon juice The beauty of this is, these are ingredients I always have on hand. I can literally just

Cheese and Corned Beef added

Reuben Dip

For St Patrick’s Day, we Americans all feel the need to have some corned beef and cabbage. Or maybe just a Reuben sandwich. This Reuben dip combines those flavors into a fun dippable form that will quickly become a new favorite! Many thanks to Chef Cody aka “hamburgerpocket” for sharing his recipe with me. Ingredients needed Think Reuben sandwich, only as a dip: Corned beef Sauerkraut Swiss cheese Onion Thousand Island salad dressing Cream cheese Sour cream I used deli corned beef for this, which is sliced very thin. But I also see this as an excellent use for leftover

cupcake decorated with Oreo buttercream frosting

Oreo Buttercream Frosting

To celebrate National Oreo Day, I made Oreo cupcakes. And I wanted to keep the Oreo theme going, so made some super-yummy Oreo Buttercream frosting. It was the perfect finishing touch! Ingredients needed This recipe takes a pretty standard buttercream frosting and adds crushed Oreos. I’ve made this with both standard Oreos and Double Stuf. The Double Stuf will have more filling and will really increase the sweetness of the frosting – like you needed that! I actually prefer it with regular Oreos but you do you! It gets rave reviews either way. Butter Heavy whipping cream (or milk) Powdered

Oreo cupcake next to a small stack of cookies

Oreo Cupcakes

March 6 is National Oreo Day but I think we can all agree that Oreos should be celebrated every day! And I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than with Oreo Cupcakes! Some Oreo fun facts I shared these facts last year, when I made Oreo Krispies, but they’re so fun I think they’re worth repeating! Over 450 billion Oreos have been sold since their introduction Oreos are sold in more than 100 countries worldwide More women dunk this cookie than men More men bite the cookie whole than women Oreos are 71% cookie and 29% crème filling

Shamrock martini surrounded by ingredients and clover garland

Shamrock Martini

St Patrick’s Day is one of those fun holidays for everyone. For years I have scoured my family history to try to find any trace of Irish ancestry, but always fail. Not a drop, anywhere. But as they say, we are all a little bit Irish on St Patrick’s Day. So to honor my almost-heritage a Shamrock Martini is clearly needed!! What goes into this martini? This blog is no stranger to green drinks. Consider the Midori sour, Baby Yoda drink and Grinch cocktail. All green, all using Midori liqueur. And Irish? You can always drink some Irish Cream, like

Waffle fries on a small red plate

Air Fryer Waffle Fries (from frozen)

The first item I tried in my new air fryer was frozen French fries. Which I love. I figured I might as well try a few other variations, so I went with air fryer frozen waffle fries. Because all forms of almost-fried potatoes are favorites in this house! Ingredients needed Frozen waffle fries Cooking spray Pretty easy, right? Disclosure: I have omitted the cooking spray more than once and had no issues with my fries. In theory, without the spray they will stick to the basket. This is probably variable depending upon the type and brand of fries you buy,

Irish Nacho style waffle fries on a red plate

Irish Nachos

With St Patrick’s Day approaching, I am in the mood for some good pub-inspired munchies. And these Irish Nachos are the perfect answer! What are Irish Nachos? Okay, so let’s be clear: they’re not really Irish and they’re not really nachos. Ha! The concept of nachos is there, but instead of chips the base is made of some type of potato. That’s the Irish part. And instead of layering with Mexican flavors, this time we use bacon, green onions, and cheese. What they really remind me of is baked potato skins, which used to be on every appetizer menu I

Air Fryer Frozen Onion rings on a small red plate

Air Fryer Frozen Onion Rings

Onion lovers unite! I am still enjoying my air fryer lid, and after the success with air fryer French fries, I knew I needed to try another: air fryer frozen onion rings. Onion rings are a real favorite in this house, so I knew I’d meet no resistance trying them out!! Ingredients needed Just like for French fries, only 2 ingredients needed: Frozen onion rings Cooking spray And equipment – I have the Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid. (and if you don’t have an Instant Pot yet, you can buy this as a combo.) How to cook frozen onion rings

Instant pot cube steak with noodles on a white plate

Instant Pot Cube Steak

If you need a weeknight dinner for someone who craves red meat, cube steak in the Instant Pot is a great solution! Its fast, tender and full of flavor. It is old fashioned comfort food but of course made so much faster and easier in the Instant Pot. Ingredients needed Cube (cubed) steak Cream of mushroom soup Beef consommé Mushrooms Onion Flour Olive oil What is cubed steak? Some say cube steak, others cubed steak. Either way, they are thin cuts of meat, usually sirloin or top round, which are flattened by pounding with a meat tenderizer. The name refers

Potato crusted cod on a white plate

Potato Crusted Cod

I love my seafood, especially salmon, but sometimes a simple cod fillet does just as well. Beer battered fish is practically its own religion in Wisconsin, but I wanted something a little lighter and easier than that. This potato crusted cod fits the bill quite nicely! Instant potato flakes are mixed with seasonings and then used to coat the cod pieces before frying. It makes a lovely crunchy outer crust around the tender cod within. Ingredients needed Cod – I buy fillets that are individually frozen to make it easy to thaw just enough for a meal. The recipe is

French fries in a basket

Air Fryer Frozen French Fries

Guess who got an air fryer for Christmas? Yes, I did! And I am really looking forward to exploring this different way of cooking some favorites. Where to start? Air fryer frozen French fries, of course. LOL I mean, aren’t we all looking for a faster and easier way to cook up some frozen fries for a quick side dish? I had to know how this cooking method worked, and fries seemed like the logical place to start. Ingredients needed Frozen French fries Cooking spray Pretty easy, right? Disclosure: I have omitted the cooking spray more than once and had

close up of french onion potato bake on a blue plate

French Onion Potato Bake

Potatoes are my favorite comfort food staple. It’s always fun to find new ways to make them. Today it’s French onion potato bake. Similar to scalloped or au gratin potatoes, but easier and with a flavor twist. Ingredients needed Potatoes (no surprise here) Sour cream Half and half Shredded cheese – “Italian mixed” French onion soup mix (dry packet) How to make these potatoes Whenever you make a potato dish like this, the important step is to get evenly sliced potatoes. If you have a mandolin, this is a good time to use it. (please watch your fingers!) Even better

Dragon Fruit cocktail in a coupe glass

Dragon Fruit Cocktail

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, I think a new cocktail is needed. And I’ve been on a bit of a dragon fruit kick lately, having made both a dragon fruit smoothie and a smoothie bowl. I couldn’t resist making a dragon fruit cocktail to try and capture that spectacular magenta color and pour it in a cocktail glass. Ingredients needed Dragon Fruit puree (magenta) Elderflower Liqueur (St Germain) Vodka Lemon juice – fresh squeezed Simple syrup Simple syrup is equal parts sugar and water dissolved together. For one-time use, I make a few tablespoons at a time, just microwave them

Nutella Martini

Nutella Martini

February 5 of every year is World Nutella Day. This is the day when we all celebrate the deliciously sweet and irresistible spread made of chocolate and hazelnut. And this year, I decided to celebrate with an adult beverage: a Nutella Martini. Ingredients needed It’s a short list of ingredients, and each is important: Vodka Frangelico (hazelnut liqueur) Nutella Cream or milk Optional for garnish: more Nutella, chopped hazelnuts, or crushed graham crackers How to make this Nutella Martini Like most cocktails, you mix all the ingredients together and then pour into a glass. But for this one, the Nutella

keto spinach artichoke dip on a celery stick

Keto Spinach Artichoke Dip

No appetizer buffet is complete without some type of spinach dip. Some are hot, some cold. I like them all! After all, they are full of spinach and therefore should count as a serving of vegetables, right? Yes. I made a cooked version and kept the carbs low to make it keto spinach artichoke dip. But all your guests will enjoy it, I promise. 😀 Ingredients needed Spinach – I used fresh but frozen will work too Cream cheese Mayo Sour cream Parmesan cheese (grated) Artichoke hearts – a can or jar, 12-14 oz in size Garlic cloves Black pepper

dragon fruit smoothie bowl garnished with toasted coconut and kiwi

Dragon Fruit Smoothie Bowl (Pitaya Bowl)

I recently made a dragon fruit smoothie but once you start having fun with dragon fruit it doesn’t want to stop! So now I made a slightly different and more “spoon able” version: a dragon fruit smoothie bowl – also called a pitaya bowl. What is a smoothie bowl? Think smoothie, only thicker. The main difference when making a smoothie bowl is that you use less liquid in order to achieve a thicker final consistency. Just as with a drinkable smoothie, once you have the proportions down you can play with ingredients and mix-n-match until you find your favorite combination.

greek yogurt with peanut butter dip surrounded by apple slices

Greek Yogurt Peanut Butter Dip

Today I’ve made another super-easy dip to help round out your appetizer buffet. Like my Heath Bar Dip, this one is a sweet highlight for apple slices. It combines Greek yogurt with peanut butter so you can feel like you’re having something a little healthy among all the “heavier” appetizers out there. Ingredients You probably think you know this already from the name, right? Well, there are actually 3 ingredients needed: Greek yogurt (vanilla flavored) Peanut butter (creamy) Honey The first time I made this, it was based upon a description my daughter gave me. It is her 5-year-old’s favorite

keto hot cocoa with whipped cream next to some books

Keto Hot Cocoa (Hot Chocolate)

As I write this, it is 11 degrees (Fahrenheit) outside. January in Wisconsin. All I want is a cup of something warm, rich and comforting: hot cocoa fits the bill! But keeping it low carb can be a challenge, so here are some tricks to ensure your keto hot cocoa gives you the taste you want but also keeps your carb count low. Ingredients needed For years, I made hot chocolate with 2 ingredients: milk and Hershey’s syrup. Mix, microwave and drink. Easy and fast. But that won’t fly in a sugar free world. Here is how I adapted to

Dragon fruit smoothies in 2 glasses

Dragon Fruit Smoothie

There’s nothing like a healthy smoothie to start your day off right. We all have different ways we like to build our smoothies, which is what makes them so popular. So easy to customize as you please! If you want to give your smoothie a little boost, try making a dragon fruit smoothie! Its amazing magenta color will brighten your morning and probably the rest of your day! What is dragon fruit? Dragon fruit is a tropical fruit native to Mexico and Central America. Its taste is like a combination of a kiwi and a pear. (Healthline) Dragon fruit, also

keto granola in a bowl with fruit and yogurt

Keto Granola

Granola is something I have always loved. Granola bars, clusters or cereal – I’ll eat it all. But when you’re trying to cut carbs, one glance at the nutrition label for traditional granola will make you put it back on the shelf. Thankfully, keto granola is here fill that need! What makes this granola keto friendly? Looking at the nutrition label for my favorite store-bought granola, the top 3 ingredients are: oats, sugar, rice. Can you say Carb City? This granola uses no grains and no sugar. By using a variety of nuts to provide the wonderful crunch we want

Toasted Coconut on a small white plate

Toasted Coconut

There have always been those who love coconut.  But toasted coconut created a whole new set of fans. You can count me in – the extra crunch and flavor you get with toasting makes coconut so yum! But there are many different ways to toast your coconut. I tried 3 different methods with both sweetened and unsweetened coconut and will show the results of each. Organic Coconut vs Non This first comparison I want to show is the difference in appearance of the 2 types of coconut I purchased. The unsweetened coconut is organic and contains only one ingredient: coconut.

green pasta sauce on spaghetti noodles, on a white plate

Green Pasta Sauce

If you’re looking to increase the veggies in your diet, green pasta sauce is a great place to start! Loaded with spinach and cheese, this fresh green sauce is something you need to try! What’s in green pasta sauce? You’re probably thinking: “Are we talking about pesto?” And yes, you can certainly mix pesto in your pasta for a very simple green sauce. But this sauce is different. It does contain a small amount of pesto to enhance the flavor. But the primary source of green in the sauce is spinach. So. Much. Spinach. Loaded with vitamins and minerals, enough

berry sauce from frozen berries being poured on a crepe

Berry Sauce from Frozen Berries

I’ve made several recipes here where I have referenced using a berry sauce when serving, so I decided it is time to make my favorite sauce its own recipe. I like to make my easy berry sauce from frozen berries. Once you try this, I think you will too! Ingredients needed The beauty of this recipe is: you only need 2 ingredients! One is frozen, one is kept in the pantry. Easy ingredients to have on hand for “just in case”. Because let’s face it, there are plenty of times when we want to make things that we’re in the

Fruit Crepes on a white plate

Fruit Crepes

One of the effects of the pandemic is that we are all cooking more at home. I am no exception. Our favorite breakfast restaurant makes the most delicious fruit crepes, and sometimes The Carnivore just starts to crave them. I realized I really needed to figure out how to make them myself! Ingredients needed for crepes A crepe is basically a very thin type of pancake, so it should come as no surprise that the ingredient list is almost the same, only with different proportions: Eggs Milk Butter Flour Sugar Salt How to make crepes They sound fancy and super

Green onion cheese ball with crackers and veggies

Green Onion Cheese Ball

It’s time for another Holiday Cheese ball, this time one that’s colorful and festive: a green onion cheese ball. Readers of my blog might remember my favorite quote about cheese balls. It’s the Brad Pitt of appetizers: always looks good, everyone likes it, and you’re always glad to see it. Yep, that never gets old. 😃 Ingredients needed for this green onion cheese ball Cream cheese Whipped cream cheese (chive flavored) Sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded Green onions Chives Onion powder, dried minced onions, garlic powder, salt & pepper How to make the cheese ball Start with room temperature cream

Eggnog and Baileys in a martini glass

Eggnog and Baileys Cocktail

It’s time to make one more special beverage to celebrate the holiday season. And I can’t think of a better starting point than eggnog, that creamy concoction traditionally served during the holiday season. This variation combines eggnog and Baileys Irish Cream, plus some vodka for a little extra punch. It’s delicious! Only 3 Ingredients needed Bailey’s Irish Cream Eggnog Whipped vodka How to make this eggnog and baileys cocktail This is a very simple drink. Simply add all 3 ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well, then strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish, if desired, with a

Nutella fudge on a red plate

Nutella Fudge

Today I bring you a recipe that is fast, easy and delicious: Nutella Fudge. It requires only 3 ingredients and a couple minutes of microwave and stirring time. It’s incredibly simple to make and truly delicious. You will love it! Is this like old-fashioned fudge? This was going to be the year. The year when I figured out how to make old-fashioned Christmas fudge, like my mom used to make. It was always so good, and a perfect addition to a tray of holiday sweets. You know what? Didn’t happen. In my defense, it’s a bigger challenge than you’d think.

Assortment of Thumbprint cookies on a red plate

Thumbprint Cookies with Brown Sugar Icing

It’s time for another classic Christmas cookie! And no holiday cookie selection is complete without the addition of thumbprint cookies. There are many versions of this cookie floating around, I dug out my Mom’s recipe for thumbprints frosted with brown sugar icing. Yummy! Why are they called Thumbprint Cookies? The name of this cookie comes from the way you create a depression in the cookie. Traditionally, we have been told to use our thumb. From a sheer point of practicality, this can be a little uncomfortable. First you bake the dough for 5 minutes, then press your thumb into it.

grinch cocktail with gold ribbon around

Grinch Cocktail

It’s still December and I am still making green drinks! And how could we let the month go by without a nod to our favorite holiday grouch, the Grinch himself? Like my previous Midori Sour Martini and Baby Yoda drink, this one starts with Midori liqueur. But for a Grinch cocktail, I felt a little more “tart” was in order and made it a much more lemony drink. Ingredients needed for this Grinch cocktail Midori liqueur Limoncello liqueur Lemon-lime soda (I used Sprite) Strawberry and marshmallow for garnish Red sanding sugar for the rim How to make this cocktail Start

Baby Yoda Drink

Baby Yoda Drink (Cocktail)

Let’s have a little fun with our cocktails, shall we? When I showed a friend my Midori Sour Martini, she pointed out that it is a perfect color to make a Baby Yoda drink. You know what? She was right! Who/what is baby Yoda? Baby Yoda is the breakout star of “The Mandalorian” on Disney+. His proper name is Grogu, but in most episodes (at least so far) he is referred to as “The Child” or “The Kid”. (Wikipedia) He is a younger version of the same unnamed species as the Star Wars character Yoda and is universally considered just

Midori Sour Martini with citrus and cocktail shaker

Midori Sour Martini

With the holiday season in full swing, it’s fun to think up new adult beverages to help keep our spirits high. And since I already have some red cocktails, (Cranberry Sauce Cocktail and Cranberry Grapefruit Kiss) I thought green would round out the selections. So I started with Midori, which makes a classic Midori Sour drink, only tried it in martini form. Somehow, everything just feels classier and more elegant in a martini glass, don’t you agree? Ingredients needed Midori liqueur Vodka Lime wedge Sparkling lemonade or lemon-lime soda Slice of lemon and cherry, for garnish How to make this

Cornflake marshmallow cookie wreath on a white plate

Cornflake Marshmallow Cookies: Wreaths

Tis the season! So many cookies, so little time! If you get tired of all the baking, try a cookie that doesn’t need an oven. Similar to a Rice Krispie treat, only made with a different cereal. Cornflakes and marshmallows combine to make a cookie you can form into a wreath. So bright and fun, perfect for a platter of Christmas treats! Ingredients needed Cornflakes cereal Miniature marshmallows Butter Green food coloring Cooking spray How to make these cornflake marshmallow cookies These mix up just like Rice Krispie treats (remember the Rice Krispie treat ghosts?) melt the marshmallows and butter

Coconut date balls on a small red plate

Coconut Date Balls

Christmas cookie season has officially begun! And I am excited to share this one with you. It was one of my favorites of the many cookies my mom used to make every Christmas season. They are unique, old fashioned cookies which are not baked, but cooked on the stovetop. Mom called them “Skillet Cookies” but that seems to refer to a whole different cookie these days. So instead, I am calling these Coconut Date Balls, since dates and coconut are the most prominent tastes in these sweet little treats. Ingredients needed Eggs Sugar Dates, diced Butter Rice Krispies cereal Walnuts,

cranberry sauce bars on a green plate

Cranberry Sauce Bars

Since many of our holiday gatherings are a little smaller than usual this year, there’s good chance you’ve got leftover cranberry sauce. Here’s a new way to use it to make a delicious treat: cranberry sauce bars! Ingredients needed Cranberry sauce Egg Flour Sugar Butter Baking soda How to make these crumble bars filled with cranberry sauce This recipe is based upon my red, white and blueberry crumble bars I made for 4th of July. Like Thanksgiving, this is another strictly American holiday, now that I think of it. . . The red, white and blue version makes a 9

Vegetarian stuffed acorn squash made in a slow cooker with salad

Vegetarian Stuffed Acorn Squash

As much as I enjoy acorn squash as a side dish, I like it even more as a complete meal. This recipe makes an easy sweet and savory filling to round out the flavor and make a healthy vegetarian main or side of stuffed squash. Perfect for Thanksgiving but also great all winter long! Ingredients needed Brown rice, cooked Vegetable stock Craisins Seasoned breadcrumbs Pecans Celery Cheese (Monterey Jack, Cheddar, or mix) Spices: onion powder, garlic powder, thyme Acorn squash How to stuff acorn squash with vegetarian filling Mixing the stuffing is very easy, especially if you have some leftover

acorn squash crock pot cooked arranged on a plate in a circle

Acorn Squash – Crock Pot Method

Acorn squash is a traditional Thanksgiving side, but since your oven is pretty busy that day it’s good to have an alternate cooking method available. Making acorn squash in the crock pot is so easy I doubt I’ll use my oven again! Ingredients needed Acorn Squash Butter Brown sugar How to cook acorn squash in a crock pot The first step, of course, is to cut the squash and remove the seeds and membrane. Before you cut, decide how you want to serve the squash. If you plan to serve a bowl of whipped/pureed squash, then you only need to

turkey meat and cheese tray

Turkey Shaped Meat and Cheese Tray

One of the easiest and most popular appetizers is a simple meat and cheese tray. Or cheese and sausage, if you will. But with a little planning to your presentation, that simple collection of cold cuts can form a turkey shape on your platter. So fun and perfect for Thanksgiving! Ingredients Bread – one slice to make the “body” Cold cuts – I used salami and pepperoni Cheese – I used 2 types, deli sliced, one white and one orange Crackers – I recommend an oval shape How to make your meat and cheese platter in a turkey shape I

Cranberry sauce in a bowl

Cranberry Sauce from Dried Cranberries

Cranberry sauce is a staple for any Thanksgiving meal. But what if you can’t find fresh cranberries? No problem – you can make your cranberry sauce from dried cranberries! No one will know the difference! Ingredients needed Dried cranberries, sweetened (Craisins) Cranberry juice Sugar 1 orange, juiced and zested Salt Cornstarch for thickening How to make cranberry sauce from dried cranberries I was really surprised at how easy it is to make cranberry sauce using dried cranberries. It’s actually very similar to using fresh cranberries. Unlike my cranberry-apricot sauce, this one only needs the juice of one orange. More liquid

turkey cheese ball surrounded by crackers

Turkey Cheese Ball for Thanksgiving

It’s time for a fun appetizer for Thanksgiving! And my most popular October post is the skull cheese ball, so I decided a turkey shaped cheese ball is exactly what I need! Ingredients needed If you have a favorite recipe for a cheeseball, of course you can use that one. I used my Halloween skull cheese ball as a starting point but made a few changes. One, I omitted the olives and pepperoni to simplify and keep it vegetarian. Two, I made it softer, by substituting whipped cream cheese for one of the blocks of cream cheese. I also reduced

bowl of brussels sprouts and carrots

Brussels Sprouts and Carrots

I love my veggies, and sometimes I just need a simple way to prepare them. This combination of Brussels sprouts and carrots delivers simplicity and taste. Plus, it’s made on the stove top which is super convenient for those times when the oven is already taken! Ingredients needed Brussels sprouts – 1 pound Carrots – 1 pound Shallot – 1 medium Butter Apple cider vinegar Salt, pepper and water – do these count as ingredients? 😀 How to make these carrots and Brussels sprouts This veggie side dish comes together very quickly. To start, cook the shallot in butter for

party mix with bugles close up

Ranch Party Mix – with Bugles

No matter what kind of gathering you have, a party mix is always well received. I like mixes with a little “something for everyone” with a variety of flavors and textures. This no bake version delivers, with goldfish crackers, pretzels and bugles, all seasoned with the flavors of ranch. Delish! Ingredient list – full recipe Mini pretzels (10 ounces) Bugles (12 ounces) Goldfish crackers (6 ounces) Cashews (10 ounces) Dry ranch mix (1 envelope) Canola oil (1/2 cup) How to make this ranch party mix Nothing could be easier than this. Basically, mix everything together and serve. LOL. You will

chili lime shrimp in a bowl with quinoa kale and avocado

Chili Lime Shrimp

In the mood for some seafood? Me too! Shrimp is one of my favorites: it’s healthy, tasty and so fast and easy to cook! I was looking for a little Tex-Mex flavor so decided on chili lime shrimp, and with that I built a delicious protein bowl. Ingredients for chili lime shrimp There are many ways to make chili-lime flavors but I really like the simple approach, so instead of coming up with a combination of chili powder and a bunch of other stuff, I rely on the Trader Joe’s Chili Lime seasoning to do most of the heavy lifting,

Roasted Swiss Chard with Parmesan

I recently stumbled upon a small farmer’s market that seemed to be thriving in the midst of social distancing. Of course, I had to stop, intending to buy one or two veggies but ending up with a car full. One item I find hard to resist is swiss chard. Especially the rainbow variety. All that dark leafy green nutrition on top of multi-colored stalks. So beautiful! But greens are not just for salads. Like so many other vegetables, Swiss chard is delicious when roasted! Ingredient list Swiss chard, any variety Onion, yellow Olive oil Parmesan cheese, shredded Salt and pepper,

keto taco casserole side view

Keto Taco Casserole

Sometimes I just crave some Tex-Mex flavors. But it can be tough to make the meals in low carb form. My version of Mexican food typically involves a bunch of chips, tortillas, beans, etc. All super yummy and super high in carbs. So when I found a keto taco casserole, I knew I had to try it. All my favorite flavors in a low carb package? Sign me up! Ingredients Ground beef Onion Garlic clove Bell pepper Taco seasoning Eggs (2) Shredded cheese (Mexican blend) Optional toppings: sour cream, tomatoes, green onions How to make this keto taco casserole Start

Keto Chocolate Mug cake on a wood background

Keto Chocolate Mug Cake

I think we have all heard of a Mug Cake, correct? It’s an ingenious way to make a single serving of cake, and ready in minutes. This is perfect for someone who is cooking for just themselves and don’t want an entire cake tempting them for a whole week. Or maybe you just want a dessert one day, a cheat day if you will, and then you intend to treat your body like a temple for the rest of the week. In all these situations, a mug cake is definitely your friend. But what if you are maintaining a low

caramel apple cider vodka cocktai;

Caramel Apple Cider (Vodka Cocktail)

Don’t you just love fall? The cool crisp air, the beautiful colors of leaves, and all the flavors unique to the season. One of my favorites is apple cider, a delicious fresh beverage that is always best in fall. Apple cider vs apple juice – what’s the difference? Apple cider is the term used in the US and Canada for an unfiltered, unsweetened, non-alcoholic beverage made from apples. (Wikipedia) Liquid is extracted from the apples, and is typically cloudy appearing due to the presence of fine apple particles in suspension. It is traditionally considered a “fresh” beverage but all US

group of rice krispie treats decorated as ghosts

Halloween Rice Krispie Treats – Ghosts!

I’ve been visiting my daughter which means I get to spend time with my favorite little kitchen helper. And it’s October so I really felt something with a Halloween vibe was in order. But nothing too complicated, just everyone’s favorite: Rice Krispie treats! So easy to make, and turned into ghost shapes for Halloween. Ingredients needed for Halloween Rice Krispie treats Butter Rice Krispies cereal Marshmallows How to make Rice Krispie treats I use the original recipe for Rice Krispie treats, right from the box. Well, actually I think the ORIGINAL recipe had a little bit more butter. Or maybe

keto whipped cream on a spoon

Keto Whipped Cream

If you are enjoying a delicious keto dessert, a dollop of whipped cream can only make it better. Make this keto whipped cream to keep your macros in line with your goals! Ingredients needed Heavy whipping cream Confectioners (powdered) sugar substitute (I used erythritol) Vanilla How to make keto whipped cream Place heavy whipping cream in a chilled bowl. Begin beating with an electric mixer on low speed. Whip for about 30 seconds or so, until the cream is starting to increase in volume and look a little “frothy.” Turn speed up to medium to medium-high and continue whipping. After

no bake keto cheesecake on a plate with berries sauce and whipped cream

No Bake Keto Cheesecake

No bake cheesecakes are easy, fast and fun to make! But the carbs really do add up. Here’s a keto version, made by using erythritol in place of the sugar and an almond flour crust. Indulge your sweet tooth while controlling your carbs! Ingredients needed for this keto no bake cheesecake For the crust: Almond Flour (extra fine) Powdered sweetener (I used Swerve) Butter For the filling: Cream cheese (16 oz) Powdered sweetener Sour cream Heavy whipping cream (1/2 cup) Lemon juice – fresh squeezed Vanilla How to make this easy sugar free keto cheesecake I adapted this recipe into

keto raspberry sauce spooned from a small white bowl

Keto Raspberry Sauce

Today I bring another way to follow a low carb diet without giving up all desserts and treats! No matter if you are following a keto, dirty keto, or just plain low carb diet plan, it is pretty tough to find a way to deal with the urge for dessert. This keto raspberry sauce goes a long way to help with that! Ingredients needed for this healthy raspberry sauce Sugar free jam – raspberry or strawberry Raspberries – fresh or frozen – 9 ounces This sauce is based on my regular raspberry sauce which I used for meringue hearts. I

Keto beef stew in a white bowl

Keto Beef Stew

Today I have another of my classic recipes that I experimented with to make a lower carb version. I started with Bloody Mary Beef Stew and created Keto Beef Stew. Just as yummy, with significantly fewer carbs! Ingredients needed Beef – I usually buy stew meat but a chuck roast works well also, if cut up Beef stock Tomato paste Parsnips – I use these to substitute for the carrots Turnips – substitute for potatoes Onion – yellow usually Carrot – just one, and this is optional (see below) Worcestershire sauce Spices: garlic powder, dried thyme, dried marjoram Bay leaf

butternut squash spaghetti bake on a white plate with salad

Butternut Squash Spaghetti Bake

I love pasta, but also love it when my jeans fit. 😀 So it’s always a good idea to have some pasta substitutes around for when the craving hits. This one uses spiralized butternut squash baked with a simple spaghetti sauce. It’s delicious! Ingredients needed Butternut squash noodles (frozen 12 oz package) Zucchini noodles (frozen 12 oz package) Ground beef (1 pound) Olive oil (for browning beef) Marinara sauce (24 oz ) Garlic cloves (2) Shredded cheese, 2 cups (Italian cheese blend or mozzarella) Seasoning: salt, pepper, Italian seasoning How to make this Butternut Squash Spaghetti Bake Like most casseroles,