Blonde Brownies

This is another sweet treat my mom would make us often.  They are simple and delightful!


Blonde Brownies
Courtesy of {Linda Sackett}

3/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups chocolate chips
1/2 cup nuts (if desired)

Directions
Preheat oven to 325°F
In a mixer, blend butter and brown sugar
Add eggs and vanilla and blend until fully incorporated
Mix in flour, baking soda, and salt
Stir in chocolate chips
Pour into greased 9x13 pan
Bake for 30-35 minutes

Poke Cake In A Jar



This is such a fun and different way to give a gift or bring a treat to a gathering.  The recipe I used was my favorite Heath Cake.  But instead of making a full cake, you just make cupcakes and divide them in half and layer them however you like.  This one was cake, caramel, cool whip, and heath.  Here are a couple others I want to try next.

Strawberry Swirl Poke Cake by Kraft
Coconut Cream Poke Cake by Dessert Now Dinner Later
Key Lime Poke Cake by Love Grows Wild
Banana Pudding Poke Cake by The Country Cook

The possibilities are endless!

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Butter Pecan Whoopie Pies with Caramel Cream Cheese Filling

I have made Whoopie Pies before, but this time I decided to play around with some different flavors and these turned out really yummy.  The filling could also be used as a frosting for cupcakes too!


Butter Pecan Whoopie Pies with Caramel Cream Cheese Filling

3 large eggs
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup oil

1 bag caramels, unwrapped
1/4 cup evaporated milk
2oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 stick butter, softened
1/2 jar marshmallow creme
1 cup heavy cream

Heat oven to 350 degrees
Spray cookie sheet with nonstick spray
Beat cake mix, eggs, water, and oil in large bowl with an electric mixer
Drop batter onto prepared cookie sheet with cookie scoop
Bake 7 to 8 minutes or until center is set and cool completely

In a small sauce pan put caramels and evaporated milk over medium-high heat
Stir constantly until caramels are melted and cool slightly
In a mixing bowl beat cream cheese and butter
Stir in marshmallow creme and caramel
Cool completely
In a separate mixing bowl whip cream on high until stiff peaks are formed
Fold cream into caramel mixture and store in refrigerator

Place half of pies flat side up
Spread with filling in center of each
Top with remaining pies rounded side up
Press gently to spread filling

Enchilada Skillet

This is just a simple but really flavorful dish.  I love it when you only have to clean up one pot!


Enchilada Skillet
Adapted from {no.2 pencil}

1 lb ground beef
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 cup onion, diced
1 pkt taco seasoning
1 cup chicken broth
2 cans (10oz) red enchilada sauce
2 heaping cups of dried rotini pasta
2 cups shredded colby jack cheese, divided
sliced black olives to taste

In a large skillet on medium-high heat add ground beef, garlic, and onions
Brown ground beef and drain off excess fat
Add taco pkt to beef (do NOT add water)
Stir until beef is fully coated
Add broth, enchilada sauce, and pasta to beef
Simmer for approx. 20 minutes or until pasta is tender and liquid is reduced
Stir in 1 cup of cheese and spread remaining 1 cup of cheese on top
Top with olives if desired
Serve warm in skillet

Sweet Thai Chili Pork Sandwich

My husband and I went to have lunch at one of our favorite sandwich shops Firehouse Subs.  They were having this sandwich for a limited time and we decided to try it and fell in love.  So when Father's Day rolled around my husband wanted to see if we could try our own version.  It was so good with a really great balance of smoky, spicy, and sweet!  I think this is one of my new favorites.



Sweet Thai Chili Pork Sandwich

6-8 lb pork shoulder
onion powder
lowery's season salt
paprika
ginger
pepper
garlic salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
liquid smoke

sub rolls
sliced pepper jack cheese
mayonnaise
sweet thai chili sauce


Directions
Place pork in a large pan, spread generously liquid smoke over meat and rub it evenly.
Sprinkle spices and sugar generously.
Repeat on other side.
Cover and refrigerate 24 hours.
Preheat oven to 250 and cook for 8 hours.
Pull or slice pork
Serve sandwich on sub roll with mayonnaise, sliced pepper jack cheese, sweet thai chili sauce, and pork.

Chili Lime Chicken Kabobs

When I think of the summer, I think of the grill! These kabobs are so tasty and way easy to make. You can also substitute shrimp for the chicken...yum!



Chili Lime Chicken Kabobs
Adapted from {Paula Deen}

1 red bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 medium red onion, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 fresh pineapple cut into chunks
3 boneless, skinless, chicken breasts cut into 1 inch pieces
salt & pepper to taste

Skewers

Marinade
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup lime juice
2 Tbl vinegar
2 Tbl sugar
1/4 tsp chili powder

Directions
In a small bowl whisk oil, lime juice, vinegar, sugar, and chili powder
Salt & Pepper chicken chunks
In a plastic bag, combine bell pepper, onion, and chicken
Pour lime marinade over chicken mixture
Seal bag, and place in the refrigerator to for 4 to 6 hours to marinate
Heat grill to 350° to 400°
If you are using wooden skewers, soak them for about an hour before use, so they don't burn
Remove chicken and vegetable pieces from marinade.
Onto the skewers, thread 1 piece of chicken, 1 piece of pepper, 1 piece of onion, and 1 piece of pineapple, alternating to fill the skewer
Place chicken kabobs on the grill
Cook for 10 to 15 minutes turning once half way
Remove skewers from grill and serve warm

Buttermilk Pancakes

These are so good served with lots of butter and warm thick syrup OR strawberries and fresh whipped cream!  Also, whatever we don't eat I like to freeze and then heat up whenever we want.


Buttermilk Pancakes

1 1/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
2 Tbl melted butter
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp vanilla

Directions
Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt
Stir in buttermilk, butter, and egg into flour mixture just until incorporated
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat
Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle (I like to use an ice cream scoop)
Brown on both sides and serve hot

Blueberry Banana Bread

A twist on a classic.  My sister, Andria comes up with the best recipes. You will LOVE this one, no doubt!



Blueberry Banana Bread
Courtesy of {Andria Lightfoot}

1 3/4 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 bananas
1/3 cup butter, softened
2/3 cups sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup sour cream
1 lemon
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup frozen blueberries

Crumb Topping
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
pinch salt
sprinkle of cinnamon

Directions
In a medium bowl stir together flour, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside
In a large bowl blend with a mixer bananas, butter, sugar, eggs, sour cream, vanilla,  and juice of half the lemon
Combine dry ingredients into wet and mix until incorporated
Fold in blueberries
Divide batter evenly into two greased loaf pans
Bake at 325° for 15 minutes
While baking prepare the crumb topping by combining butter, brown sugar, flour, salt, and cinnamon
Remove bread from the oven and sprinkle crumb topping over batter
Replace bread in the oven and continue baking for 30 more minutes

Easter Nests

These were a delicious tradition at my house growing up at Easter time.  I have now continued that tradition with my kids.  They love helping me make these every year, and they are tasty too!


Easter Nests

2 Tbl butter
1 (7 oz) marshmallow creme
1/4 cup peanut butter
3 cups chow mien noodles
pastel peanut m&ms

Directions
Place a large pot on medium-high heat
Melt butter
Add peanut butter and marshmallow creme and mix until combined
Remove from heat and stir in chow mien noodles until coated
Drop in small spoon fulls on wax paper
Place m&ms on each nest


Chicken Verde Casserole

I got this recipe from Girls in Aprons, and it sounded delicious.  Then I found out that it won the LDS Living Casserole Contest, and I knew I HAD to try it.  The flavors were perfect, and just like they said, even the kids liked it.  We are going to be putting this one into the regular rotation for dinner from now on.  Thanks Girls in Aprons for sharing!


Verde Chicken Casserole
Adapted from {Girls in Aprons}

1 container (16 oz) sour cream
1 jar (16 oz) green verde salsa
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp salt
2-3 chicken breast, cooked & shredded or cubed
1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained & rinsed
1 cup frozen corn, thawed & drained
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
4 cups mexican blend cheese, shredded
green onion, chopped for garnish
6 flour tortillas

Directions
Preheat oven to 350°
Line two 8" or 9" round pans with foil on the bottom and up the sides
Grease pans with cooking spray
In a large bowl combine sour cream, salsa, and spices
Stir in chicken, beans, corn, and cilantro
In one pan place a tortilla in the bottom
Using an ice cream scoop, place three scoops of the chicken mixture and spread evenly over tortilla
Sprinkle 3/4 cup of cheese over mixture
Repeat layer (tortilla, mixture, and cheese)
Place tortilla on top and sprinkle with 1/2 cup cheese
Repeat in second round pan
Bake for 15-20 minutes until cheese is bubbly and casserole is warmed through
Remove from  oven and cool for about 5-10 minutes
Remove casserole by holding onto foil and lift it out of the pan
Place on cutting board and cut into desired size wedges
Serve with extra sour cream and green onion, if desired