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Monday, September 1, 2014

#ad The Ultimate Football Party Food: General Tso's Wings, Nacho Bites and Homemade Oreos

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.   #GameTimeHero #CollectiveBias

Football season is in our view, which means lots of tailgating and gatherings with friends, so I've come up with a fantastic bunch of perfect Football Party Food...I'd even go as far as to say it's "the ultimate" football party food! :)  So many times parties are associated with stress, because of all the preparation that goes into them, but I'm here to tell you that celebrations can be so simple to pull off, and I'll prove it! It's as easy as grabbing a bucket of Deli Wings, throwing together some Nacho Bites and whipping up a batch of Homemade Soft Oreo Cookies!  See?! No sweat!
My husband played football in high school and absolutely loved it.  My son is only four, so he doesn't have us taxiing him all about to ball practice and games yet, but I'm sure that day will come all too soon. :)  

His dad has high hopes for him in the athletic department, but as a mother, I'll be totally fine if he isn't interested in padding up in preparation to get bumped around the field. :)  Don't get me wrong...if that's where his dreams lie, I'll be the first to hit the bleachers and cheer him on, but for now we'll get our football fix by watching our favorite team play from the comfort and safety of our own sofa while enjoying good company and even better food!
And we'll start with these General Tso's Boneless Chicken Wings!  When hosting guests, there's already a million things to think about, so I love that I can pick up a bucket of pre-cooked wings at the Walmart deli, along with some ranch dressing for dip, and focus my energies on other preparations.  Walmart also has Hot Bone-In Wings for all the spice lovers out there.  

If it happens to be a tailgating party in the parking lot instead...even better!  The wings are portable, warm and ready to eat when you are!
I served them in fry boxes and attached cute football printables found HERE (at Second Chance to Dream) to carry out the theme.  Because we are big "dippers" at our house, I served the wings with a side of Kraft Classic Ranch Dressing and some fun add-ins like celery, green onions, jalapenos, and Feta cheese.  Easy peasy and tasty too!
Walmart has bone-in Hot Wings and General Tso's Boneless Wings available in a Pick 3 Bucket, a plated meal, or wings by the pound. What a time-saver!
I got to sample the General Tso's Wings with a side of Ranch and peppers at a fun in-store demo and then I decided I'd better bring some home to share.  :)
Since it just isn't game time without nachos, I whipped up a batch of phenomenal Homemade Chipotle Queso Nacho Bites to accompany the wings. 

I made some large tortilla chips first by spreading a thin layer of olive oil on both sides of a bunch of tortillas, then cutting them into jumbo triangles.  Next, I salted the tops and baked them in a 400 degree Fahrenheit oven for about 10 minutes, or until crispy.  
Then I made a flavorful Chipotle Queso mixture for topping!  It made a ton and they were gone in a flash!  Aren't they pretty too?  Top them with shredded cheese, olives, tomatoes, jalapenos, onions, sour cream, or whatever you like-they're so versatile!  The guests are sure to rave about these puppies!

{CHIPOTLE QUESO NACHO BITES}

1 lb. hamburger, cooked, crumbled, and fats drained
1 Tbsp. garlic
1 Tbsp. taco seasoning
1/2 c. Queso Cheese Sauce
1 Chipotle Chile from the can, finely chopped (remove seeds to reduce heat)
1 tsp. Adobo Sauce from canned Chipotle Chiles

Cook hamburger meat in a large skillet, with garlic, until no longer pink.  Drain and discard fats.  Add taco seasoning, Queso sauce, chopped chipotle chile, and Adobo Sauce to meat and stir until combined.  Place a spoonful of the meat mixture on each homemade tortilla chip and then top with toppings of choice.

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Now all we're missing is dessert...quite possibly the most important course...at least in my book.
Last and surely not least, I love to serve these Homemade Soft Oreo Cookies at large gatherings.  They always fly right off the plate!  I shared the recipe for these in a past post that you can find HERE.

That's all it takes to host a fun game day or tailgating party, my friends!  I told you it was a cinch!

Do you look forward to football season each year?

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Friday, August 29, 2014

Blueberry Crumb Coffee Cake: August Mystery Dish & Giveaway!

It's time for some more exciting Mystery Dish, and this time around, I put together the most delicious Blueberry Crumb Coffee Cake with crunchy pistachios, that can be served for breakfast or any time of the day!  I'm pretty sure you'll love it!
Andi at the Weary Chef was our wonderful hostess this month.  She selected the following awesome list of ingredients and asked us to use a minimum of three:

pistachios
wine
mint
gluten-free flour (coconut, rice, almond, etc.)
red pepper flakes
fish
agave nectar
applesauce
blueberries
parmesan cheese
milk
corn
Growing up my dad used to make the most amazing Coffee Cake on special occasions.  It's actually funny that he did, because it was the only thing I remember him baking.  He helped my mom cook when he could, but he very rarely baked, unless it was his special Coffee Cake.  We kids would request and beg for it on certain Sunday mornings when we didn't have early church.  We'd literally cheer if he succumbed to our pleas.

So when I saw this month's fabulous ingredients, I knew I needed to make a coffee cake of sorts in honor of those fond memories from my growing up days.  

{BLUEBERRY CRUMB COFFEE CAKE}
Adapted heavily from Taste of Home

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/3 c. sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup applesauce
2 cups plus 3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour, divided
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup chopped pistachios

Topping:
4 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
4 Tbsp. brown sugar
2 Tbsp. cold butter

For batter, in a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in eggs and applesauce.  Combine 2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture.  Mix in softened cream cheese just until combined.

In a separate bowl, toss blueberries and chopped pistachios with 3 Tablespoons flour.  Fold into creamed mixture.  Batter will be thick.  Transfer to a greased 9"x13" baking dish.  

For topping, in a small bowl combine flour and brown sugar.  Cut in butter until crumbly.  Sprinkle over batter.  Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
I probably don't need to even explain this, but it's been known to cause some confusion, so I will.  Coffee cake gets its name not because coffee is used as an ingredient, but because the cake is often served with a side cup of coffee.  I'm not a coffee drinker myself, so I chased it down with a cold glass of milk.  Yum!

This dessert can be enjoyed any time of the day, but to me it makes a perfect breakfast cake!  It's sweet enough, but not over-the-top like a normal dessert cake might be.  Now you all know how I love my treats, but I typically like to ease into them rather than starting off my day on sugar overload.

This cake is absolutely delectable!  It's moist with pops of fresh blueberries, crunchy chopped pistachios and a perfect crumb topping to round it all off.  
I brought it to a get-together with some friends and they all raved about it.  It's definitely praiseworthy.  Enjoy!   

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Check out what the other talented Mystery Dish members made this month!


  1. Tuna Tacos with Avocado Corn Salsa by The Weary Chef
  2. Blueberry Scones by Yummy Healthy Easy
  3. Parmesan Crusted Tilapia by Culinary Couture
  4. Minty Berry Fruit Roll Ups by I Want Crazy
  5. Baked Blueberry Donuts by Chez CateyLou
  6. Hearty Minestrone Soup by Joyful Healthy Eats
  7. Blueberry Lemon Pannacotta with Pistachio Tuilles by Flavor the Moments
  8. Minty Turkey Meatballs with Quinoa by The Pajama Chef
  9. Blueberry Crumb Coffee Cake by I Dig Pinterest
  10. Pistachio Drop Scones with Blueberry Compote by The Well Floured Kitchen
  11. Grilled Corn & Blueberry Flatbread with Whipped Goat Cheese, Pistachios, and Basil Vinaigrette by Baking a Moment
  12. Pistachio Crusted Tilapia and Peach Salad by Blahnik Baker

To see all my past Mystery Dish creations, go HERE.

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This month we have a fun giveaway going for a MasterChef Cookbook!  Enter to win below.  Good luck!




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Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole: Help a School with Campbell's Labels for Education #labels4edu #cbias


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #Labels4Edu #CollectiveBias



Chicken Enchilada Casserole is an easy and family-pleasing meal for those busy school nights! And speaking of school, this dish can help a school in need. Say what?! The creamy, flavorful sauce in this oh-so-tasty dinner is made with Campbell's Soup, which so happens to be a participant in the Labels for Education Program. Simply clip the UPC code on the back of the can, send it to school with a child, and watch the prize points add up! It's as easy as 1-2-3! :)


We're in full school mode around here now, and with it comes very busy evenings with homework and a myriad of other commitments all crammed in before bedtime. Needless to say, dinner takes a back burner (pardon my pun). I pride myself in providing home-cooked meals for my family, so when life gets crazy, evening meals just get more simple, but without sacrificing on yumminess!  

This casserole was no sweat to prepare, and after taking a bite, I gave it two thumbs way up.


It's a comforting end to a hectic day, one that the whole family can gather around the table and enjoy while conversing about the events that unfolded.


Layers of creamy chicken sauce, tortillas, green chiles, sour cream, and cheese...it's sure to receive cheers!  Don't forget to clip the UPC code on the back of the Campbell's Soup can and give it to a school in need.  I collect them and send with my second grade daughter whose school is a participant in the Labels for Education program.  Every little thing helps!
But back to this deliciousness.  Top it with extra sour cream (we like to use light to save on calories), some tomatoes and green onions, and you've got perfection!  Plus, I don't have to make dinner tomorrow on a school night because we'll be eating tasty leftovers!  Major win!

I visited Campbell's Kitchen, found a recipe that caught my eye, and gave it a little spin, because I enjoy doing that sort of thing. :)
Then I went to Smith's to pick up dinner ingredients and grabbed a bunch of cans of Campbell's Soup.  I love to support a good cause and I use them in my recipes all the time.  Print coupons for these products and more HERE.
The little section where the arrow is pointing can help earn free stuff for your child's school! I like to keep a baggie on the refrigerator with all my saved labels and when it's full, I send it with my daughter to give to her teacher. The system works great, and it earns free stuff for her school! It's a pretty sweet deal!'

I recently found that I can track her school's progress and even view their wishlist online, based on the labels collected from participating products. There are over 2,500 point-earning items, by the way!

{EASY CHICKEN ENCHILADA CASSEROLE}

4 large chicken breasts (or about 4 c.), cooked and shredded
2 cans (10 3/4 oz. each) Campbell's Healthy Request Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup
1 cup Pace Picante Sauce or salsa
1 1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 c. light sour cream
1 can (6 oz.) green chiles, drained and chopped
6 flour tortillas
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
Diced tomato for topping
Chopped Green Onions for topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a 9"x13" pan with non-stick spray. Stir the soup, Picante sauce or salsa, and chili powder in a large bowl.  Reserve 3/4 c. soup mixture.  Add the cooked, shredded chicken to the remaining soup mixture and stir to coat.

Spoon half of the chicken mixture on the bottom of the pan, then layer with two large flour tortillas so they cover the entire area.  You may need to break off a few pieces of extra tortillas and add to the open spaces.  Spread sour cream on top of tortillas and sprinkle with green chiles and 1/2 c. shredded cheese.  

Layer two more tortillas, again filling in the open spaces as needed.  Spread the remaining half of the chicken mixture on top of the tortillas and then add another layer of tortillas.  Spread the reserved 3/4 cup sauce mixture on top of tortillas.  Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly.  Remove foil, sprinkle with remaining cheese (1 cup) and return to the oven for about five minutes, or until cheese is melted.  Enjoy!

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I love finding small and simple ways to help the community and this casserole definitely does that, while feeding my family at the same time.
My daughter attends a great school, but they request quite a bit of help from the parents by way of frequent supply donations.  In fact, I sent her on the first day with three shopping bags full of classroom necessities. I admire that Campbell's is giving back to a great cause-educating our children.  I'll certainly quickly clip and save a label on the back of a soup can if it means giving a teacher access to more of the things needed to help my sweet girl learn.

Here's another great opportunity to earn money for schools...get this.  Campbell's is running a Labels for Education Sweepstakes where 1000 schools will win $1000!  Amazing! I would do flips if my daughter's school was among the lucky winners.  That could buy a lot of new supplies and equipment!  Go HERE for more information about the contest and to enter.

I hope your family loves this Chicken Enchilada Casserole!  Don't forget to save the soup labels!

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

How to Grow Your Blog eBook: Tips, Tricks & Tutorials from 30+ Top Bloggers: The Big Release!!

Ahhhhhhhhhh....I'm so excited to be the bearer of some beyond fantastic news today!  It's been a long time coming, but all good things are worth the wait, right? :)

If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen the teaser I posted a few weeks ago about the upcoming release of an eBook I contributed to on "how to grow your blog".  Well, my friends...today's that special day, and I couldn't be more thrilled to spill the beans!
How to Grow Your Blog eBook: Tips, Tricks and Tutorials from 30+ Top Bloggers
It's here, hot off the press...well as steaming as an eBook gets, I suppose.  The How to Grow Your Blog eBook: Tips, Tricks & Tutorials from 30+ Top Bloggers.  You can be perusing your very own copy in less than a minute if you'd like! Click here to view more details

I honestly never thought I'd have such an amazing opportunity and certainly not this early in my blogging journey.  This sounds really cheesy, but even more than sheer joy and gratitude, I feel humbled to be a co-author with such a phenomenally talented group of bloggers.  Seriously, I'm a little star struck and you'll see why when you read the beginning credits. :)

I would be totally remiss if I didn't proclaim a humongous "Thank You" to Shauna of The Best Blog Recipes for organizing, contributing to, and editing this awesome book.  I know she poured hours upon hours into making it an impeccable tool for all who read.  Another big shout-out to Britni from Play.Party. Pin for her amazing editing work.  I seriously appreciate these incredible ladies so much.  I feel like we're at the Emmys now, so I'll move on to the golden nugget...the reason you've been sitting on the edge of your seat.  I know...I saw you. :)
I couldn't wait to lay my hands (well, more like my eyes) on the completed eBook, and it certainly didn't disappoint.  In a nutshell, it's everything I really wish I would have known in my first year of blogging...and more.

The reason why this book (Click here to view more details) is so great is the same reason we should have listened to our mothers as teenagers rather than rolling our eyes while chomping a gigantic wad of pink bubblegum.  Learning from the experience of others makes life loads easier and helps us get on the path to success much quicker!

As it relates to blogging, there were so many simple tricks of the trade that took me a while to learn on my own, but that after I did, I went, "Duh!".  There will be more than a handful of those treasures of knowledge in the 171 marvelous pages of this book that will blow your mind with their sheer simplicity and, at the same time, utter brilliance...ideas that will make you wonder why an intelligent being like yourself didn't already consider.  There will be many other helpful, wonderful tidbits that deserve a category entirely on their own...i.e. the "ask the expert" lifeline if we were playing Who Wants to be a Millionaire, if you catch my drift.

Although I'm certainly not an expert in the field, I've learned some important "ins and outs" that I'll candidly share, along with the wealth of information from my many other talented blogging co-authors.

I'll be the first to say that the first year's ride felt bumpy at times, but I'm so glad I stuck it out, because now I'm savoring the sweetness of it, and it truly gets better every day!  I'm thrilled at the chance to share my insights to help make your blogging experience smooth sailing!

So whether you're a newbie to blogging, eager to quickly learn the ropes, a long-timer who's stuck in a rut, or you're just downright puzzled about why so many people would want to occupy a spot on the internet and fill it with crafts and recipes, party ideas, fashion advice, beauty tips, travel stories and such...this book is the red and white buoy floating on your ocean horizon, beckoning you to take hold.  It can figuratively save your life.

Click here to view more details about this outstanding eBook, to see sample pages, read what other bloggers are saying about it, and to grab a copy of your own!  Your future successful blogging self will thank you!  If you happen to have any questions after reading it, I'm all ears with fingers ready and eager to fly over the keyboard in response!  I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Happy blogging!

**Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links and I will receive a portion of the proceeds for my work on the book.  You will in turn be bestowed with valuable and undeniably amazing knowledge that will enable you to rock the blogging world! Of that I am certain.  Look for me on page 97!


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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Dutch Apple Pie Bars

These delectable Dutch Apple Pie Bars with a tasty crumb topping and cinnamon sweet glaze are sure to have you yearning for fall and the cooler weather!
So remember these Dutch Peach Pie Bars from a little while ago?  They're pretty unforgettable.  Well, I couldn't get enough of them, and since apples are popping up on trees all over right now, I decided to alter the recipe a bit and add the beautiful in-season fruit. 

This version includes a similar crumb topping, chopped apples tossed in a spiced sugar mixture, an irresistible cinnamon glaze on top, along with one of my favorite types of nuts...the fabulous pecan.  Yumm-o! 
We have two apple trees in our backyard.  They've been there for around six years and haven't really produced, but over the past year they really matured and thrived.  About a month ago, we noticed that they were growing mini apples that were beginning to ripen.  Notice I said "beginning".  The kids and I got ants in our pants and decided we needed to pick them.  I don't know that they've ever seen apples growing on trees, so it was a significant occurrence.
So I grabbed a plastic bag, we ran out all excited and plucked a bunch from the trees.  You may have seen our pretty red treasures if you follow me on Instagram.  They were so cute! 

 But they didn't taste very good because we jumped the gun on the readiness factor.  Luckily we left quite a bit on the trees that we allowed to ripen in the sun for a few more weeks and then picked to our hearts' content.

This batch of apples was juicy and succulent!  It was a lesson in patience for all of us. :)  Good things really do come to those who wait.

And speaking of good things...this recipe just might be the best thing that ever happened to your dessert queue, so I'll hand it over now.

{DUTCH APPLE PIE BARS}

Crust
1/2 c. pecans, chopped
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. oats
2/3 c. brown sugar
3/4 c. butter, melted
1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Apple Filling
3 1/2 c. apples, peeled and diced fairly small
1/8 c. white sugar
1/8 c. brown sugar
1/8 c. flour
1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Glaze
1 c. powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1 Tbsp. milk, or a little more, until desired consistency is reached

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  For the crust, stir together pecans, flour, oats, brown sugar and cinnamon.  Incorporate melted butter completely until all the mixture is moistened by it.  **Reserve 1 c. of the crust mixture for the topping.   Press remaining crust mixture into the bottom of a 9"x 13" pan and bake for 9-11 minutes.

While crust is baking, prepare apple filling mixture by stirring together white sugar, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon.  Add peeled, chopped apples and toss to coat completely.  When crust is finished baking, spread apple filling evenly over.  Sprinkle reserved crumb topping over and return to the oven.  Bake for approximately 20-25 minutes.

Let cool completely, then prepare the glaze by stirring together powdered sugar, cinnamon and adding milk until desired consistency is reached.  Drizzle over bars, cut, and enjoy!
You have my permission to take a bite. :)  If only...  

This is a perfect fall dessert!  I'm excited for the leaves to start changing colors and the temperature to drop a bit. Are you?

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Monday, August 25, 2014

DIY Tin Can Desk Supply Organizer

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Office Depot, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #inspirestudents http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV.

I de-cluttered my once-messy work space with this simple tin can DIY Desk Supply Organizer that would also make a great teacher gift!  Isn't it fun?
It's back to school time, which means organizing and preparing for change!  I'm embracing it wholeheartedly with this cute DIY desk supply organization station.  

There's nothing more frustrating than scrambling and failing to find a pen for jotting notes when making an important call or turning the house upside down in search of a single pair of scissors.  Have you done this?  It happens all too often around here, I'm afraid.  Talk about a stressful situation!

So in my attempt to start the school year off right this time around, I stuck my supplies in one, tidy place where they're right at my fingertips!  It's conveniently portable too!  So when my daughter's doing homework, I can move this handy caddy to the table where she has easy access to all she needs.

Because I'm a little obsessed with stripes and polka dots (ask my friends and family about my wardrobe), I chose to paint them onto empty tin cans for a very inexpensive desk organizer with some serious spunk!  It's a definite conversation piece, don't you think?
The other day I took a trip out to Office Depot for school supplies, but this time my husband watched the kids.  Hallelujah!  I was like a kid in a candy store with time to kill and no children to chase.  Talk about heaven!  The associates had to keep checking in on me because I was taking so long to make a decision....just because I could! :)

I totally scored, because this gigantic package of Sharpies was only 5 bucks!  Way to make me smile, Office Depot.
I ended up with a cart full of beautiful items that I just must have before the school year can start and then set home to organize them in style!  No more frantic searches for writing utensils!

Right now is a perfect time to tackle this project, because you can save $5 Off your purchase of $20 or more on Select Newell Rubbermaid Brands (PaperMate, Expo Neon Window Markers, Sharpie, Uni-Ball, & Mr. Sketch)! All of my favorites are definitely included in that list.

Office Depot and Office Max have the best sales on back to school supplies! From Aug 24-30 find weekly savings on select products like PaperMate Flair 4pk’s:  $4, Sharpie 12CT Asst Fine & Ultra Fine Asst: $6, Sharpie Dozen Box Black Fine & Ultra Fine: $6, while supplies last. Sounds good to me!

{SUPPLIES}
6 tin cans of equal size, emptied, outer paper removed, and cleaned
Acrylic Paints in various colors
Foam Paint Brushes and a round foam brush for the polka dots
Masking tape for the stripes
Hot Glue Gun
Clear Acryllic Matte Spray for a protecting top coat (optional)

Rinse and clean your cans well.  We wouldn't want our supplies to end up smelling like green beans. :)  Make sure to remove any sharp edges that may be left on the inside of the can.  Turn them over and let dry completely.
Paint the base color on each of the cans.  You may need 2-3 coats for full coverage.  Let dry in between. 
Make sure the base paint is completely dry before this next step or the paint will peel off when masking.  Ok now go ahead and add some fun patterns...polka dots, stripes and such!  

To paint the polka dots, you'll want a round foam brush as shown above.  Simply dab it in the paint, blot it once on a test surface to remove excess paint, then carefully stamp the brush onto your can.  Repeat for each polka dot.
For the stripes, tape off the areas where you want the base color to show through.  
 Paint, then remove the tape.  I was a little impatient and didn't allow mine to dry all the way beforehand, so my paint wanted to come off with the tape in certain areas.  I quickly touched those up, though.   
Now let them dry completely. Spray them with a Clear Acryllic Matte protecting coat if you'd like. It seals the paint and will reduce the chance of paint flaking and scratching off.
Now secure the cans together by laying three down side by side, then hot gluing them where they touch at the joints in front and back.  Stack two more on top and repeat the gluing process.  Lastly, stack one can on top and glue. 
Now fill it with those pretty supplies and admire!  I love it when functional meets cute!  I'm thinking I'll keep this one and make another for my daughter's teacher.  What a useful gift it will make, and a great impression too.  I'm all for earning brownie points.  I see a big A+ in my daughter's future! :)

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How do you stay organized after school starts?  I'd really like to hear your tips!

For all other back to school projects go HERE.

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Friday, August 22, 2014

Homemade Hearty Breakfast Granola

This Homemade Hearty Breakfast Granola is loaded with oats, nuts, sunflower seeds, and dried cranberries, and is sure to keep you fueled until lunch!
I have never been a breakfast skipper...or any meal skipper for that matter.  When my stomach isn't satisfied, I have zero energy, but when it's full and happy, I'm a true go-getter!  I run early every morning and about an hour later, my body complains of hunger.  So I like to give it something that will stick with it for a long period of time, so I don't destroy my workout by over-snacking between meals.

This Hearty Granola does just that! 
I poured a large bowl of it the other morning and could barely pack it all in.  My eyes tend to be bigger than my stomach after a good hard run.  Note to self: less is more when it comes to granola.

This left me completely satisfied until the noon hour, and that doesn't happen often, folks.  I'm typically not a coconut person, but I barely notice it with all the crunchy textures and sweet dried cranberries.

This recipe is so versatile! Add in frozen yogurt bites, dried fruit, fresh fruit, cinnamon, nuts of any kind, or toss a little of it to into your bowl of yogurt!  I like it with milk.  It's yummy no matter how you serve it up!

Some of the oats and nuts cluster together while baking....mmmmmmm!!  

{HOMEMADE HEARTY GRANOLA}

4 c. old fashioned oats
2 c. wheat germ
1 c. coconut
1 c. nuts, chopped (I use pecans, but pretty much any will do)
1 c. dried cranberries or raisins (optional)
1 c. sesame seeds or sunflower seeds (I use sunflower)
3/4 c. brown sugar
3/4 c. coconut oil
1/3 c. water
2 Tbsp. vanilla

Stir all ingredients together well.  Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray.  Pour mixture onto sheet and spread out evenly.  Bake for 1 hour, pulling it out every 15 minutes or so to stir and toss the mixture to prevent burning.

I know this is typically a breakfast food, but I could seriously eat it for any meal!  It's just that good.

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For more great breakfast recipes, be sure to check out:





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