Sunday, March 30, 2014

Cookie Dough Cupcakes

These Cookie Dough Cupcakes look amazing and taste even better than they look. They also pack a sweet surprise...

A cookie dough stuffed center! These Cookie Dough Cupcakes are double the cookie dough - stuffed with cookie dough in the middle and then topped with cookie dough frosting. Sinfully sweet and delicious!

I made these in February to celebrate my brother's birthday. They were loved and devoured by everyone.

There are no health safety risks eating these cupcakes, as the cookie dough is eggless. I'd recommend making extra and keeping it in the freezer when you need a sweet tooth fix.


Cookie Dough Cupcakes

·1 box of Betty Crocker Gluten Free Yellow Cake Mix
·1 1/2 cups brown sugar
·1/2 cup butter, softened
·1/2 tsp vanilla
·2 cups gluten free flour
·Pinch of salt
·1 cup miniature chocolate chips

To prepare cookie dough, mix together the brown sugar and butter in a medium bowl until smooth. Mix in vanilla, milk, gluten free flour, and salt until well blended. Remove half of the cookie dough into a separate bowl. Stir in 1/2 cup of mini chocolate chips into one bowl of cookie dough only. Chill both bowls of cookie dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare gluten free cake batter according to package directions. Spoon into muffin tins lined with cupcake liners. *Do not bake yet.

Remove both bowls of cookie dough from the fridge. Using the bowl of cookie dough with chocolate chips mixed in, roll the cookie dough into 18-24 one-inch balls. Drop one ball of cookie dough into the center of the cake batter in each cupcake liner.

Bake cookie dough stuffed cupcakes according to package directions. Meanwhile, let the other bowl of cookie dough begin to soften. When cupcakes are finished baking, remove from pan and allow to cool completely.

To prepare the cookie dough icing, stir the cookie dough that's been softening on the counter. Do not stir in the chocolate chips. If you do, the cookie dough frosting will be harder to work with. Add a few splashes of milk, if needed, to thin the cookie dough out enough for frosting. Frost each cooled cupcake with the cookie dough frosting, then sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup of mini chocolate chips on top.

Serve, enjoy, and celebrate!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Chipotle Raspberry Pork Chops


Chipotle Raspberry Pork Chips are the epitome of a sweet and spicy dish. I'm not a huge fan of pork chops, but the way these pork chops are prepared is delicious! Not only is it tasty, but it's a fast and simple dish that comes together with a few ingredients. The outcome is the perfect balance of sweet and spicy.

Chipotle Raspberry Pork Chops
Slightly adapated from Taste of Home

·1/2 cup seedless raspberry preserves
·1 TBS chipotle chiles in adobe sauce puree* (see note below)
·Salt to taste
·6 boneless pork chops

In a small saucepan over medium heat, cook raspberry preserves and chipotle puree until heated through, stirring occasionally. Set 1/4 cup aside to use for serving.

Meanwhile, heat a grill or a grill pan on the stovetop to medium heat.

Sprinkle the pork chops with salt then brush with remaining chipotle-raspberry sauce. Cook the pork chops on the grill for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until cooked through.

Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Serve with reserved chipotle-raspberry sauce on top.

*Note: For the chipotle chiles in adobo sauce puree, you need to buy a small can of chipotle chiles in adobo sauce from the grocery store (it's usually found in the Hispanic foods section). In the can is whole chipotle chiles in adobo sauce. Seed the chipotle chiles and then puree the entire can of adobe sauce and chipotle chile together. Use the amount need for the recipe, then freeze the rest in a marked plastic bag. Next time a recipe calls for chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, all you have to do is break off a piece from the bag in the freezer.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Moroccan Chicken with Coconut Rice


Moroccan Chicken with Coconut Rice is sweet, savory, and flavorful.

While I prefer quick and easy dinner recipes, this dish does take some time and effort to prepare but it is worth it. The aroma that fills your house while cooking will have your mouth watering, which pays off in the first, flavor-rich bite.

Moroccan Chicken with Coconut Rice
Slightly adapted from Carol Fenster

·1 recipe coconut rice, see below
·4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
·1 tsp salt
·1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
·1 TBS cornstarch
·3 TBS extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
·2 large onions, chopped
·1 tsp each - ginger, cinnamon, cumin, paprika
·1 TBS brown sugar
·2 cups chicken broth
·1/2 - 14.5oz can of diced tomatoes, including juice
·2 TBS lemon juice
·2 TBS honey
·1 TBS minced garlic

In a large skillet or Dutch oven, heat 2 TBS of EVOO over medium heat. Add onions and cook, covered, for 20 minutes. Add ginger, cinnamon, cumin, paprika, and brown sugar. Cook for 10 more minutes, stirring constantly until onions are caramelized. Transfer to a plate.

Add remaining 1 TBS of EVOO to the skillet. Sprinkle chicken with 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp of pepper, and 1 TBS of cornstarch. Cook chicken until golden brown and the inside is no longer pink, about 5-7 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.

Slowly whisk in the chicken broth, tomatoes, lemon juice, honey, and garlic. Bring to a boil, hen reduce heat to  medium-low. Cook uncovered until the mixture begins to thicken, about 5-10 minutes. Return chicken and onions to the skillet. Simmer until heated through, about 3-5 minutes.

Serve chicken and sauce over prepared coconut rice.

Coconut Rice

·1 cup coconut milk
·1 1/2 cups water
·1 cup brown rice

Combine coconut milk and water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add the rice, stir well, and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes without stirring. Fluff with a fork and serve.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Butternut Squash and Black Bean Enchiladas

Butternut Squash and Black Bean Enchiladas are the perfect vegetarian dish for meatless Mondays or Lenten Fridays. It's also a great way to enjoy butternut squash before it's out of season, which is sadly too soon.
A ton of great flavors simmer together to make the stuffing for the enchiladas, including butternut squash, black beans, tomatoes, green chillies, cilantro, and jalapeno.
There is one simple change to make this recipe gluten free. Use soft corn tortillas instead of the whole wheat tortillas called for in the recipe linked below.

Click here for recipe from Skinny Taste

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Healthy Monster Cookie Dough Dip


I promise that no one you serve this Healthy Monster Cookie Dough Dip to will know A) it's healthy and B) what the secret ingredient is. I took this dip to a party and took some to my family; everyone loved it and devoured it.

A made a few revisions to the recipe linked below. First, I used dry chickpeas. I soaked the beans overnight, rinsed them, and then cooked according to the package directions. FYI - if you don't let the beans cool completely before stirring in the chocolate chips and M&Ms, they will melt. The dip still tastes great, but looks less appetizing. Luckily, I learned from experience for you, and my friends and family don't judge appearances when it comes to dessert!

I used peanut butter and stirred in 1/3 cup of M&M's for a true Monster Cookie taste. I served with Kinnikinnick Gluten Free Graham Crackers, but it's also good eaten straight from the bowl with a spoon.


Click here for recipe from Chocolate Covered Katie

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Cheesy Pepper Jack Potato Chowder


Cheesy Pepper Jack Potato Chowder is a spicy twist on traditional potato soup. Spring is almost here (Hallelujah!), but this thick and creamy chowder will be a great dinner on any cold winter nights we have left.

There are three things I love about this dish. First, it's made with southern style hashbrowns so no potato peeling or chopping involved. Two, it's a chowder recipe not a soup recipe, so no blending required. Easy, easy! Third, it's made with spicy pepper jack cheese. How have I not had potato soup with pepper jack cheese before? It's amazing, and I don't think I can go back to traditional cheddar in my cheesy potato soup recipes ever again.

What's your favorite potato soup recipe?

Click here for recipe from Iowa Girl Eats

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Spinach and Artichoke Mac & Cheese


This recipe combines my favorite dip with my childhood (well, and adult) favorite dish. This grown up version of Mac & Cheese tastes like sinful comfort food, but it is packed with veggies. This dish makes eating veggies fun for kids and adults, who are still kids at heart.

Spinach and Artichoke Mac & Cheese
Inspired by Rachael Ray
·1 lb gluten free pasta (I used Target's Simply Balanced Fuselli)
·2 TBS Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
·1 TBS butter
·1 medium onion, finely chopped
·2 tsp minced garlic
·1 1/2 TBS cornstarch
·1/2 cup white wine
·2 cups skim milk
·1/4 tsp nutmeg
·1 10-oz box frozen chopped spinach, cooked and drained
·1 - 6.5 oz jar artichokes, chopped
·Generous salt and Black pepper
·1 1/2 cups shredded Italian cheese (mozzarella, parmesan, and provolone blend)

Preheat oven to 375˚F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil for pasta, salt water and cook pasta to al dente.

Meanwhile, place a medium pot over medium-low heat with olive oil and butter. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and cook until soft, about 5-10 minutes.

Turn the heat up to medium-high and sprinkle the cornstarch into the pan. Cook for about 1 minute then whisk the wine into the pan, cooking for another minute to deglaze the pan. Whisk the milk into the pan and bring up to a bubble. Add the nutmeg, spinach, artichokes, salt and pepper to the sauce and simmer until thickened and vegetables are warmed through, 2-3 more minutes. Add cheese to the sauce and stir until melted.

Toss the prepared sauce with the cooked pasta and transfer to a casserole dish. Bake until the top is golden brown, about 15 minutes.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Thai-Inspired Butternut Squash and Peanut Soup (Crockpot)

I've mentioned many times before my love of butternut squash. The sweet flavor is versatile in so many different dishes, including this Thai-inspired twist on Butternut Squash Soup.
I've been on a Thai food kick lately, and this soup satisfied my taste buds with a slightly spicy take on a typically sweet Butternut Squash Soup.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

5-Vegetable Fried Rice with 5-Spice Pork

5-Vegetable Fried Rice with 5-Spice Pork is an incredibly diverse and flavorful dish. It's packed full of 5 different vegetables that are complemented with pork loin. The Chinese 5-Spice adds the perfect balance of flavor to the dish that really ties everything together.
I made two slight changes to the recipe linked below. I used brown rice instead of white rice - personal preference for a higher nutritional content. I used gluten free soy sauce instead of tamari to easily convert this recipe to gluten free.