Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Top 13 Recipes of 2013

I'm also joining the blogger bandwagon to reflect back on 2013 and share my Top 13 Recipes of 2013.

In the spirit of reflection, I want to thank you all for reading and trying, pinning, and sharing my recipes. Throughout the year, I sometimes wonder why I go through the trouble of maintaining As Good As Gluten - as it's a lot of work with no monetary reward. In these times, I randomly get a comment or email or phone call or run into one of my readers. You share encouraging words, feedback, or nice complements that keep me going. Knowing how I've helped you on your gluten free journey is the only incentive I need to keep my blog going.

What recipes or posts would you like to see more of in 2014? I hope you have a very Happy New Year! I'm excited to see what 2014 brings.

Top Recipes of 2013

13. Baked Avocados: creamy avocado topped with savory garlic and cheese and sweet tomato and basil = a delicious and quick dinner.

12. Angel Chicken (Crockpot): an easy crockpot meal that tastes delicious, despite the less than appetizing photo.

11. Hummus Pizza: this was my favorite pizza this past summer. This Mediterranean inspired pizza is fresh and savory with a touch of sweetness.

10.  Sausage & Grits Casserole: this creamy and decadent casserole got voted "best casserole ever" by family. Try it and let me know if you agree.

9. Cheeseburger Stuffed Zucchini Boats: this delicious recipe tastes like a cheesy, deconstructed cheeseburger without all of the grease. Healthy and delicious!

 8. Nutella No Bake Cookies: this Nutella twist on traditional No Bake Cookies is delicious and brings back fond childhood memories.

7. Romano and Mushroom Marsala Polenta: this hearty meal comes together quickly and the flavor possibilities are endless.

6.  Creamy Avocado Pasta with Tomatoes and Mushrooms: this flavorful dish is deceptively creamy and rich; you'd never know the sauce was made with healthy avocados.

5. Avocado-Hummus Cheese Panini: I'm starting to see a theme here the closer I get to the top recipe. Vegetarian dishes (and avocado) are definitely favorites. This panini won't disappoint. It's fast to make, tastes great, and is a healthy and filling vegetarian meal.

4. Cucumber and Avocado Summer Rolls with a Savory Sauce: despite my frustration making spring rolls, this tasty recipe tastes like a fresh, handheld salad.

3. Carbonara with Squash and Kale: this creamy, flavorful pasta dish packed full of my favorite fall flavors. It is one of my many favorite recipes of the year.

2. Vegetarian Quinoa Chili (Crockpot): this spicy, flavorful, and meatless meal is still full of protein with the additions of quinoa and black beans.

1. Moscato Spritzer: This "recipe" had twice as many views as my #2 recipe of the year and 8 times as many views as the #13 recipe! Needless to say, it was just as big of a hit for my readers as it was for all of the parties I made it for this past year. This favorite party drink is simple to prepare and tastes great – very fresh, light, and slightly sweet.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread

Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread is the perfect accompaniment to chili during the colder fall and winter months. This recipe comes together easily and the outcome is classic cornbread with a cheesy, spicy twist.

Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread

·1 cup rice flour
·¾ cup cornmeal
·3 TBS sugar
·2½ tsp baking powder
·¾ tsp salt
·1 TBS butter
·2 eggs, beaten
·1 cup skim milk
·¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
·1½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
·1 jalapeño pepper, chopped

Preheat oven to 400˚. Combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.

Place butter in a 10-12 inch cast-iron skillet or round baking pan. Place in oven for about 3 minutes, or until butter melts. Remove pan from oven and swirl butter in the pan to coat the bottom and sides of the pan.

In a small bowl, combine eggs, milk, and olive oil. Add egg mixture to the flour mixture; stir until just moistened. Fold in cheddar cheese and jalapeño. Pour batter into the buttered, hot skillet.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Beef, Mushroom, and Carrot Braised Stew


If it's way too cold where you live, this hearty Beef, Mushroom, and Carrot Braised Stew will help. It's pure comfort food and a delicious meal all in one bowl.

Beef, Mushroom, and Carrot Braised Stew
Adapted from Taste of Home

·1 boneless beef chuck roast (2-3 lbs), cut into 1-inch cubes
·¼ tsp salt
·¼ tsp pepper
·3 TBS extra virgin olive oil
·1 lb. fresh mushrooms, sliced
·4 large carrots, sliced
·2 medium onions, sliced
·2 tsp minced garlic
·32oz. beef broth
·1 cup dry red wine
·½ cup port wine or brandy
·1 TBS tomato paste
·¼ tsp each – dried parsley, rosemary, sage, and thyme
·1½ TBS cornstarch
·3 TBS water
·Hot mashed potatoes

Preheat oven to 325˚. Heat olive oil over medium heat in an oven-safe Dutch oven. Add beef, season with salt and pepper, and brown beef. Remove from pan once edges of beef are browned.

In the same pan, add mushrooms, onions, and carrots. Cook until tender. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring well. Stir in broth, wines, tomato paste, and herbs. Return beef to pan. Bring to a boil.

Bake, covered, 30 minutes. In a bowl, mix cornstarch and water until smooth. Gradually stir mixture into stew. Bake covered for 30 minutes or until sauce is thickened and beef is tender and cooked through. Skim fat and serve with mashed potatoes.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

White Christmas Sangria

Merry Christmas!!

White Christmas Sangria combines my love of sangria with my love of holiday flavors - cranberries, apple, and rosemary. This sangria is fragrant and tastes like Christmas in a glass.

My favorite tip for making sangria is to use a flavor-infused pitcher. The fruit infuses into the liquid perfectly without having to strain any fruit pulp out before serving.

White Christmas Sangria

·1.5 L Moscato wine
·1.5 L Sprite Zero
·2 large honey crisp apples, diced
·1 cup cranberries
·1 sprig of rosemary

Place fruit and herb in the flavor-infused center of the pitcher. Add wine and Sprite. Let chill for at least 2 hours before serving. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Amish Mystery Biscuits

I hope you and your family have a very, Merry Christmas!

This recipe comes from my mom's kitchen and you must try it. It's a new family favorite recipe, loved by everyone and requested for breakfast every time I'm home. My favorite way to enjoy Mom's Amish Mystery Biscuits is for Biscuits and Gravy, but they are delicious to enjoy any way you'd normally use biscuits.

Amish Mystery Biscuits

·2 cups gluten-free flour blend
·1 TBS baking powder
·1 tsp sugar
·Pinch of salt
·¼ cup olive oil mayonnaise
·1 cup milk

Preheat oven to 375˚. Combine gluten-free flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle of the bowl and dump in mayonnaise and milk. Stir until it forms into a play dough batter. Do not overmix! Pat out and cut biscuits or drop formed blobs into a greased muffin tins. You can also brush the biscuits lightly with milk before baking. Bake for 12-16 minutes.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Cookie Week Recap – Easy Peanut Butter Cookies 6 Ways

This year’s Cookie Week all stated with this simple recipe for Easy, Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies. I made one batch of these delicious, peanut buttery cookies. Then, with the addition of one simple ingredient, I turned that one batch of cookies into six different and indulgent cookies - recapped below with an extra bonus recipe. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

Easy Peanut Butter Cookies

Nutella and Peanut Butter Cookies

Peanut Butter Stacked Reese's Cookies
Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Nutella Filling

Gluten Free "Oreo" Stuffed Peanut Butter Cookies
And, a bonus cookie I made last year with the same base cookie recipe with one simple addition...
Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies

Friday, December 20, 2013

Gluten Free "Oreo" Stuffed Peanut Butter Cookies

Cookie Week is coming to an end and I’ve saved the best for last…Gluten Free "Oreo" Stuffed Peanut Butter Cookies. Even though “stuffed” cookies made their infamous web debut a few years ago, this stuffed cookie is nostalgic for me.

Gluten Free "Oreo" Stuffed Peanut Butter Cookies were inspired by teenage years and my love of Oreos dipped in peanut butter. It was before my gluten-free days and I think it was a concoction inspired by a movie – the original Parent Trap­ perhaps? Nonetheless, this cookie is amazing. A gluten free “Oreo” stuffed inside of a peanut butter cookie = sinfully sweet.

Gluten Free "Oreo" Stuffed Peanut Butter Cookies

·1 recipe for Easy Peanut Butter Cookies
·12 gluten-free “Oreo” cookies (I used Kinnikinnick Chocolate Sandwich Cookies)

Prepare Easy Peanut Butter Cookie batter according to recipe. Mold the peanut butter cookie dough around a gluten-free “Oreo” cookie, assuring the entire “Oreo” is surrounded with peanut butter cookie dough. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes at 350˚. Let cookies cool on cookie sheet for 1-2 minutes before moving to a wire cooling rack.

Note: These cookies take longer to cook than regular Easy Peanut Butter Cookies. 12-15 minutes should be enough, but keep an eye on them as they may need longer depending on how much peanut butter cookie dough you’ve placed around the gluten-free “Oreo” cookie.

Yield: 12 cookies

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Nutella Filling


Another Nutella Cookie for Cookie Week. Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Nutella Filling are the perfect cookie for peanut butter and chocolate lovers.

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Nutella Filling (Flourless)

·1 recipe for Easy Peanut Butter Cookies
·1/4 cup Nutella

Prepare Easy Peanut Butter Cookies according to recipe. Cool cookies on a wire rack for 5-10 minutes. To assemble the sandwich cookies, place a spoonful of Nutella on the bottom of one peanut butter cookie and then top with another peanut butter cookie.

Placing the spoonful of Nutella in between the peanut butter cookies is best done when they are still warm, but have begun to cool. This will assure the Nutella will melt slightly to create a warm, gooey chocolate-hazelnut center. If you wait until the cookies are cool, the Nutella won’t melt but will still result in a delicious cookie.

Yield: 12 sandwich cookies

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Peanut Butter & Jelly Cookies


Peanut Butter & Jelly Cookies are the star of today’s Cookie Week recipe. This cookie is a nostalgic twist on a favorite sandwich – PB&J, and was a hit with kids and adults. This recipe proves delicious and nostalgic desserts do not have to be difficult. This recipe could not be simpler – top Easy Peanut Butter Cookies with a spoonful of jelly and serve. Peanut Butter & Jelly Cookies are also easy to customize with a variety of jelly flavors to please everyone's taste buds.

Peanut Butter & Jelly Cookies (Flourless)

·1 recipe for Easy Peanut Butter Cookies
·¼ cup of jelly (I used Strawberry, but use any jelly flavor of choice)

Prepare Easy Peanut Butter Cookies according to recipe. Once cookies have cooled for 10-15 minutes on a wire rack, add a spoonful of jelly on top of each cookie.

Yield: 24 cookies

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Peanut Butter Stacked Reese's Cookies


Welcome back to Cookie Week! All of the cookies in Cookie Week are simple, including these decadent Peanut Butter Stacked Reese's Cookies. My favorite candy, Reese’s cups, are placed in between two peanut butter cookies resulting in a warm, gooey, chocolate-peanut butter sandwich cookie.

Peanut Butter Stacked Reese’s Cookies (Flourless)

·1 recipe for Easy Peanut Butter Cookies
·12 regular-sized Reese’s cups, unwrapped

Prepare Easy Peanut Butter Cookies according to recipe. Cool cookies on a wire rack for 5-10 minutes. To assemble the stacked sandwich cookies, place a Reese’s on the bottom of one peanut butter cookie and then top with another peanut butter cookie.

Placing the Reese’s in between the peanut butter cookies is best done when they are still warm, but have begun to cool. This will assure the Reese’s melt slightly to create a warm, gooey chocolate-peanut butter center. If you place the Reese’s in between the cookies when they are fresh out of the oven, the Reese’s will melt entirely into a gooey, yet tasty, messy cookie. If you wait until the cookies are cool, the Reese’s will maintain their shape – but you can place the assembled stacked cookies in the microwave for a few seconds to slightly melt the Reese’s center.

Yield: 12 sandwich cookies

Monday, December 16, 2013

Nutella and Peanut Butter Cookies

The next cookie for Cookie Week is Nutella and Peanut Butter Cookies. A spoonful of Nutella on top of Easy Peanut Butter Cookies is a simple and delicious addition that takes a classic peanut butter cookie to the next level. This cookie is best served warm fresh out of the oven. Adding the spoonful of Nutella on top of a warm peanut butter cookie assures the Nutella gets slightly warm and gooey. Yum!

Instead of topping the peanut butter cookie with Nutella, you could also swirl Nutella into the cookie batter to bake a Nutella-Peanut Butter cookie. Either way, Nutella and Peanut Butter are a winning cookie combination.

Nutella and Peanut Butter Cookies (Flourless)

·1 recipe for Easy Peanut Butter Cookies
·¼ cup of Nutella

Prepare Easy Peanut Butter Cookies according to recipe. Once peanut butter cookies are transferred to a wire rack to cool, add a spoonful of Nutella on top of each cookie. Serve warm.
Yield: 24 cookies

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Easy Peanut Butter Cookies

Welcome to cookie week at As Good As Gluten!

My cookie extravaganzas usually happen around the holiday season when I go into baking mode. Two years ago, cookie week all started with this Flourless Double Chocolate Fudge Cookie which I turned into 6 decadent cookies.

This year, cookie week starts with another favorite cookie, Easy Peanut Butter Cookies, which also happen to be flourless. This cookie was the first recipe I posted when I started my blog in October 2010. It was one of the few dessert recipes I had in my recipe book that I knew was gluten free and tasted great. I'm amazed at how far my gluten free baking (and cooking) has come in 3 years. I'll stop the nostalgic trip down gluten free memory lane here and get back to cookie week.

Easy Peanut Butter Cookies are great on their own, but also make a great base cookie for five other varieties I'll share with you throughout the week. Easy Peanut Butter Cookies are packed full of peanut butter flavor. When cooked properly, they're crisp on the outside and soft in the inside. My favorite way to enjoy is warm out of the oven with a glass of milk.

Easy Peanut Butter Cookies (Flourless)

·1 cup of creamy peanut butter
·3/4 cup sugar
·1 egg

Preheat oven to 350˚. Cream together sugar and egg, then add peanut butter. Roll cookie dough into 1 inch balls and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Press cookies with a fork to get the criss-cross pattern.

Bake for 10-12 minutes. Let cookies cool on cookie sheet for 1-2 minutes before moving to a wire cooling rack.

Yield: 24 cookies

Friday, December 13, 2013

Bacon Cauliflower Soup


A bowl of healthy comfort food. Sounds like an oxymoron? I promise, it's not with this recipe.

Bacon Cauliflower Soup is a low-carb alternative to Creamy Potato Soup. It's thick, creamy, and flavorful. We didn't even miss the potatoes.

I made a two changes to the recipe. To make it gluten free, I used 1 TBS of corn starch in place of the 2 TBS of flour. I also used Turkey Bacon to make it just a little more healthier.

Click here for recipe from Iowa Girl Eats

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Romano and Mushroom Marsala Polenta


This hearty meal comes together in 20-30 minutes. It’s a new favorite that I’ve made almost every other week since I first made it a month or so ago. To round this dish out when I serve it as a meal, I’ve stirred in cooked chicken or spinach. The base polenta recipe is creamy and cheesy for this dish would also be great served with your favorite blackened fish or shrimp.

Romano and Mushroom Marsala Polenta
Romano Polenta Ingredients:
·½ cup milk
·2 cups water
·½ cup cornmeal
·Salt and pepper
·½ cup Romano cheese
·2 tsp extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)

Mushroom Marsala Ingredients:
·6 oz. mushrooms, destemmed and sliced
·2 TBS extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
·½ cup Marsala wine
·Salt and pepper
·1 tsp dried Parsley, optional

For the Polenta, bring liquids to a boil with salt. Whisk in cornmeal until no lumps remain. Reduce heat to simmer for 15 minutes. Stir occasionally. Add pepper, EVOO, and cheese. Stir until combined.

For the Mushrooms, heat EVOO in a medium skillet. Add mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Cook until tender. Add wine to deglaze the pan and remove from heat.

Scoop polenta into a bowl. Top with Marsala mushrooms. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Chipotle Chicken and Corn Chowder


Even though winter is my least favorite season, I love soup season. The flavors in this Chipotle Chicken and Corn Chowder are perfectly balanced. It's a hearty soup full of comfort food favorites - chicken, corn, and cheese - with a twist of the perfect amount of spice from the peppers.

Click here for recipe from Brown Eyed Baker

Friday, December 6, 2013

Crunchy Black Bean Tacos


I’ve been traveling a lot lately for work and cooking dinner is the last thing on my mind. Crunchy Black Bean Tacos are the perfect fix for busy weeknights. Seasoned black beans loaded with flavor are packed between a crunchy corn tortilla shell stuffed with cheese and my favorite taco toppings. The best part of this meal – it tastes great and comes together in less than 15 minutes!
Crunchy Black Bean Tacos

·1 recipe for Seasoned Black Beans (I made with pre-cooked dry black beans, or you can use canned)
·3 TBS extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
·6 corn tortillas
·½ cup shredded Monterey-Jack cheese
·1 tomato, diced

Heat ½ TBS extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) in a skillet. Add corn tortilla. Spoon 1/4 cup or so of Seasoned Black Beans on one half of the tortilla shell. Sprinkle with cheese and tomatoes.

Use a spatula and fold tortilla on half, on top of the side with the beans. Gently press down. Cook for 3 minutes per side until crispy. Repeat as needed to finish making Crunchy Black Bean Tacos.

If you use a large pan, you can do more than one at a time. Serve with your favorite taco toppings (sour cream, salsa, guacamole, etc.).

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Chipotle Black Bean Macaroni and Cheese


This spicy vegetarian dish has incredibly robust flavors and comes together in 30 minutes. If you have a meat lover in your family that likes black beans, they won't miss the meat in this hearty dish.

Chipotle Black Bean Macaroni and Cheese
Slightly modified from Serious Eats

·2 TBS cornstarch
·8oz. skim milk
·2 eggs
·½ lb. gluten free elbow macaroni shells (I use Tinkyada brown rice gluten free shells)
·1½ cups cooked black beans (you can substitute canned if you’d prefer – just drain and rinse)
·2 TBS chipotle chilies in adobo sauce puree (see note below or read my tip on chipotle chilies in adobo here)
·1 jalapeno chili, finely minced
·1 cup shredded cheddar jack cheese
·2 tsp dried cilantro
·1 tomato, diced
·4 green onions, chopped

Cook pasta in a large pot of salted water according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of pasta cooking water.

In a medium bowl, whisk together cornstarch, milk, and eggs until well-combined. Set aside.

Return drained pasta to large pot and add cooking water, black beans, chipotle chilies in adobo puree, jalapeno pepper, milk mixture, and cheese. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until cheese is melted and sauce is creamy and smooth. Be careful not to heat too quickly or stop stirring as the eggs in the milk mixture might cook into scrambled eggs. Stir in cilantro and green onions. Serve immediately.


Note: For the chipotle chilies in adobo sauce puree, buy a small can of chipotle chilies in adobo sauce from the grocery store. It’s usually found in the Hispanic foods section with other Hispanic-inspired sauces and ingredients. When you open the can, you’ll find whole chipotle chilies sitting in adobo sauce. Seed the chipotle chilies (if you desire less heat) and then puree the entire can of adobo sauce and whole chipotle chilies together. Use the amount needed for the recipe, then freeze the rest flattened in a marked plastic bag. Next time a recipe calls for chipotle chilies in adobo sauce, all you’ll need to do is break off a piece from the freezer. I love this tip, as I never need an entire can of chipotle chilies in adobo for one recipe, but cook with the ingredient a few times a month. This tip also works great for tomato paste and pumpkin if a recipe only calls for a few teaspoons or tablespoons.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Zuppa Italiano


Zuppa Italiano is a creamy meat and potatoes Italian soup. It’s comfort food that tastes rich and is packed with complex flavors.

Zuppa Italiano
Modified from Hy-Vee

·4 slices turkey bacon, chopped
·1 lb. spicy Italian turkey sausage, removed from the casing
·1 large onion, chopped
·2 tsp minced garlic
·½ tsp red pepper
·5 cups chicken broth
·2 large potatoes, thinly sliced and chopped
·½ tsp salt
·½ cup heavy cream
·½ cup Greek yogurt
·2 packed cups of kale, trimmed and chopped

In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon, set aside, and drain any grease from the pan.

Add the sausage, onion, garlic, and red pepper to the saucepan. Cook over medium heat until sausage is brown. Add chicken broth, potatoes, and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk together cream and Greek yogurt until well-combined and no lumps remain. Add cream mixture, bacon, and kale to the soup. Heat through and serve.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Pumpkin and Bean Tacos


Pumpkin tacos?! Yes. Just trust me on this.

Pumpkin and Bean Tacos are a great way to use leftover pumpkin from holiday baking. They are super-fast to make and taste great! This is one of the most unique combinations of taco ingredients I’ve tried, and I’m impressed with how well I liked it.

What’s the most unique taco you’ve ever had – and liked?

Pumpkin and Bean Tacos
Adapted from Rachael Ray

·Canned pumpkin
·Refried Beans (can use canned or Homemade Refried Beans)
·Soft corn tortilla shells
·Shredded cheese
·Green onions, sliced
·Cilantro (freshly chopped or dried)

Heat a corn tortilla shell in a skillet over medium heat. Spoon 1 spoonful of pumpkin and 2 spoonfuls of refried beans on one side of the shell. Top with cheese, green onions, and cilantro. Fold the shell over to form a taco. Heat on both sides until heated through, about 2 minutes per side. Serve immediately.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Magic Pumpkin Cookie Bars


Happy early Thanksgiving! If you need a quick, gluten free dessert for the holidays – Magic Pumpkin Cookie Bars are it. I made these two weeks ago for an early Thanksgiving celebration and they were a hit. Magic Pumpkin Cookie Bars are super simple to make. They only require 8 ingredients (most of which I always have in my pantry) and use oats instead of the traditional graham cracker crust to make them gluten free.

Don’t be alarmed by the bright orange color – they’re not supposed to be that way. I accidentally used 1 entire can of pumpkin instead of 1 cup. J The pumpkin flavor was strong in my batch, but they still tasted great – sweet, coconut-y, and chocolate-y!

Click here for recipe from Lynn's Kitchen Adventures

Sunday, November 24, 2013


Tater Tots + Nachos = Tot-chos. Now that we've cleared that up, this dish probably makes more sense and you're craving something you probably never heard of before.

I don't have a recipe for Tot-chos, as the combinations are endless and you can build them to your desire. I made a batch of tater tots (check the label to assure they're gluten free), and topped with ground beef seasoned with my Homemade Taco Seasoning. Then piled on top are our favorite nacho toppings - cheese, tomatoes, jalapenos, and green onions. Enjoy for game day or dinner, no judging here!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Udi's Three Cheese Pizza


Udi's Pizza Crusts are my favorite gluten free pizza crust. They are much easier than making homemade pizza dough and taste better than other pizza crusts I've tried. I've been using Udi's crusts for years to make a wide variety of pizzas. I recently found in my grocery store that Udi's sells frozen pizzas, so I bought the Three Cheese Pizza to try.

Udi’s Three Cheese Pizza tasted as I expected it to – a cheese pizza on Udi’s crust. While I could easily make this myself with an Udi's pizza crust and add my own toppings, sometimes it's nice to just unwrap a frozen pizza and through it in the oven.
Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. It's a product I bought, loved, and wanted to share with you!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Apple Juice Spritzer

Apple Juice Spritzer is the perfect mocktail for Thanksgiving. It's simple to prepare with only two ingredients and tastes delicious - sweet, sparkly, and refreshing.

To prepare Apple Juice Spritzer, combine equal parts of Apple Juice and Ginger Ale. Chill before serving. Enjoy!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Mexican Skillet Zucchini

Zucchini recipes in November? Yes, I’m that late in posting this Mexican Skillet Zucchini recipe. If you’re somehow still swimming in zucchini as I was at the end of the summer or need a taste of summer, this recipe is for you. If not, save it on your Pinterest board until warmer weather rolls around.

Jalapeños and cilantro give zucchini a nice kick in this dish. It’s simple to prepare and tastes fresh and flavorful.

Click here for recipe from Skinny Taste 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Udi's Maple Pecan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Udi's sent me their Maple Pecan Chocolate Chip Cookies this summer, but my husband and I anxiously waited until fall to try them as Maple Pecan seemed more of a fall flavor than a summer flavor. I smelled maple as soon as I opened the bag; definitely a fall/winter cookie to someone like me who defines seasons more on flavors than the weather.

With a strong maple and pecan flavor, these cookies are the perfect fall cookie. They are soft and moist, and just a tad bit crumbly. I wasn't sure how maple would pair with chocolate, but we found that maple and pecan flavors pair quite well with chocolate chips.

Disclaimer: Udi’s provided the product for me to review. However, my review and opinions written above are my own.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Asparagus Frittata with Potato and Mozzarella

Asparagus Frittata with Mozzarella and Potato is perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. It's a classic healthy frittata, with each serving under 200 calories.

Asparagus Frittata with Mozzarella and PotatoFrom Weight Watchers
·1 large baking potato, peeled and thinly sliced
·1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into ½-inch pieces
·4 large eggs
·4 egg whites
·½ cup skim milk
·4 TBS shredded mozzarella cheese
·½ tsp salt
·¼ tsp baking powder
·1 onion, chopped

Preheat oven to 500°. Place the potato in a saucepan and add water to cover by 3 inches. Cover the saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat; boil 5 minutes. Add the asparagus and cook 2 minutes longer. Drain and set aside to cool.

Combine the whole eggs, egg whites, milk, and 3 TBS of cheese, salt, and baking powder ina bowl. Mix in the potato and the asparagus.

Spray an ovenproof skillet or pan with nonstick spray and set over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes. Add the egg mixture and reduce heat to medium. Cover and cook until almost set, about 10 minutes. Uncover the skillet, sprinkle with remaining cheese, and transfer to the oven. Bake until the frittata is cooked through and the cheese has browned, about 5 minutes. Invert the frittata onto a plate and cut into 4 wedges before serving.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Baked Eggplant Parmesan Boats with Sausage

Baked Eggplant Parmesan Boats with Sausage taste are a twist on Eggplant Parmesan, yet taste like a hearty, classic Italian dish. Eggplant topped with chicken sausage, tomato sauce, and mozzarella is {healthy} comfort food at its finest.

Click here for recipe from Skinny Taste

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Butternut and Bacon Corn Chowder

This soup is fall in a bowl, and I'm obsessed with it. We've made it multiple times this fall, it's that good. Sweet butternut squash paired with savory bacon and spicy chipotle peppers is a winning combination.

What's your favorite fall soup?

Butternut and Bacon Corn ChowderIngredients:
·6 slices of turkey bacon, chopped
·1 onion, chopped
·2 cups roasted butternut squash, cubed
·2 cups homemade chicken stock
·2 cups water
·2 tsp minced garlic
·2 tsp canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped
·1 bag frozen corn
·½ tsp dried sage
·Salt and pepper

In a large saucepan, cook the bacon until crisp. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and sauté until onions are soft. Add the squash, chicken stock, water, chipotle peppers, and corn. Simmer until heated thoroughly – about 5 minutes. Transfer 3 cups of the soup to a blender and puree. Pour the puree back into the pan with the soup and season with salt, pepper, and sage. Pour into bowls to serve.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Carbonara with Squash and Kale

My favorite part of fall is fall foods and the ingredients I love to cook with - pumpkin, squash, cinnamon, apple, etc. Carbonara Squash and Kale is a creamy, flavorful pasta dish packed full of fall flavors. We loved this pasta as it is sweet from the butternut squash and hearty from the kale. My husband and I both agreed the only thing that could make it better is if bacon was also stirred in.

Carbonara Squash and Kale
·2 TBS extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
·1 tsp minced garlic
·Dash of red pepper
·2½ cups sliced kale
·Salt and pepper
·1 cup roasted butternut squash
·10 oz. gluten free pasta noodles
·2 eggs, beaten
·½ cup Parmesan cheese


Bring a large part of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente.

Heat EVOO in a skillet over medium heat. Add minced garlic and red pepper. Cook for 1 minute. Add kale, season with salt, and cook until wilted, about 3-5 minutes. Stir in 1 cup of cubed, roasted butternut squash. Cover and set aside.

Drain pasta, reserving ½ cup of pasta water. Add pasta to skillet over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper and stir in reserved water. Remove skillet from heat, stir in eggs. Return to heat and stir until eggs make a sauce, about 30 seconds. Remove from heat, stir in cheese, and serve.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Spiked Caramel Apple Cider

Spiked Caramel Apple Cider is fall in a glass. It's easy to make and tastes like a grown-up caramel apple. We had a chili cook-off a few weekends ago, and this adult beverage was a hit. Combine 4 parts apple cider to 1 part caramel vodka, and serve chilled or warm. Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Snickerdoodle Sandwiches

Snickerdoodles are a family favorite recipe, and Pumpkin Cream Cheese Snickerdoodle Sandwiches are a delicious fall twist on our favorite cookie. A crisp, classic, cinnamon-sugar cookie filled with creamy pumpkin cream cheese frosting is the perfect fall dessert.

I appologize for the bad iPhone photo.  I made these cookies a month ago to take to dinner at my grandparents for the first weekend of fall. My family devoured these cookies, as they disappeared within minutes around my grandparent's dinner table. Good food is always better shared with family!

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Snickerdoodle Sandwiches
·1 recipe for Snickerdoodles
·8 oz cream cheese, softened
·1/2 cup pumpkin
·1/3 cup brown sugar
·1/2 tsp cinnamon
·1/4 tsp nutmeg
·1/8 tsp cloves
·1/8 tsp allspice 
·1/2 tsp vanilla

Prepare Snickerdoodles according to recipe directions. For the frosting, combine all ingredients in a bowl. Beat on medium speed until well-combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. When ready to serve, spread a spoonful of pumpkin cream cheese frosting on the bottom of one cooled cookie. Top with another cookie. Serve immediately, or keep pumpkin cream cheese in the fridge until ready to assemble to serve.

Note: The pumpkin cream cheese recipe makes more than what you need for the cookies, but go ahead and make the full recipe. You'll be glad you didn't cut the recipe in half when you have extra to enjoy with apples, graham crackers, bagels, pretty much anything!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Skinny Mojitos

Mojitos are one of my favorite cocktails - so light, flavorful, and very refreshing. While fall is my favorite season and I've been enjoying fall cocktails, which I'll post later this week, I'm preparing for a much needed beach vacation. One sip of a mojito instantly places my mind on the beach.

Skinny Mojitos
·6 mint leaves
·1 lime
·4 oz club soda
·2 oz clear rum
·3 tsp sugar

Muddle mint leaves with juice from half of a lime and sugar. Combine remaining ingredients and shake in a cocktail shaker. Serve with remaining lime juice squeezed into a glass. 

Serves 2

Note: For a Skinny Blueberry Mojito, add a handful of blueberries to the mint and lime juice when muddling.