March 27, 2017

Chocolate Chow Mein Robin Egg Nests

These are the perfect Springtime/Easter treat to make with your kids! They are easy, cute and may I say delicious! You could easily switch out the kind of chocolate/baking chips you use, but I went with milk chocolate because it's our favorite.
You can also use any egg-shaped candy you like, but my boys love these Whopper's Mini Robin Eggs so that's what we went with. I'd say they are one of the cutest Easter egg-shaped candies around and one of the most addicting, too.

Chocolate Chow Mein Robin Egg Nests
Makes 12 nests
8 oz. milk chocolate chips
3 1/2 - 4 cups crunchy chow mein noodles
36 Whopper’s Mini Robin Eggs

1. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper or silicone cupcake liners. Set aside.
2. In a large microwave safe bowl, melt chocolate chips in microwave, stirring every 30 seconds.
3. Stir in chow mein noodles until evenly coated.
4. Drop by spoonfuls into lined muffin tin and mold into nest shapes.
5. Let set at room temperature or place muffin tin in the fridge to set up quicker.
6. Place three Whopper’s Mini Robin Eggs on top of each nest.

March 25, 2017

Creamy Coconut Hawaiian Haystacks

I'm not sure exactly where Hawaiian Haystacks originated, but they definitely seem to be popular among Utah families. I personally only had them once or twice growing up in Utah, but once I was married I made them ALL the time because they were cheap, filling and good.
The original recipe I used called for a ton of butter, a can of condensed soup and a few more unhealthy ingredients. I absolutely love how this new recipe is lightened up and uses coconut milk to create a truly tropical dish.
I think you will love this new version of Hawaiian Haystacks that is perfect for your whole family!

Creamy Coconut Hawaiian Haystacks
Adapted from Oh Sweet Basil
2 cups cooked white rice 
2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 tsp. garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 cup whole milk or cream
1 (13.6 oz) can coconut milk, divided
2 cups shredded or cubed cooked chicken
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tsp. lemon juice

Toppings
crunchy chow mein noodles
cheddar cheese
pineapple tidbits
cilantro
lime juice or True Lime powder

1. In saucepan over medium heat, add the butter and melt. Add the garlic, whisking quickly and then flour and continue to whisk for one minute.
2. Add salt, black pepper, onion powder, milk/cream and half the coconut milk. Whisk and then bring to a simmer. Allow to cook for 2 minutes or until thick. Whisk in remaining coconut milk, sour cream and lemon juice. Add the chicken and season to taste.
3. To serve, place rice on bottom, chicken gravy on top and any toppings you desire. Store leftovers in separate containers in the fridge.

March 18, 2017

Weekly Meal Plan: Week One

I wanted to start sharing weekly meal plans and the easiest way for me to do that is to share the ones I create for my family every week.

I have a few tips and tricks to meal planning that I'd love to share in a future post because meal planning not only saves you money, but it makes cooking so much easier and more enjoyable. Trust me on that one!

For now, check out these amazing recipes for an awesome week of meals your family will love!
Sunday: Easy Stovetop Shells & Cheese and Roasted Carrots

Monday: Thai Chicken Curry with Red Peppers with rice

Tuesday: BBQ Chicken Pizza and salad

Wednesday: Hawaiian Haystacks with rice

Thursday: Slow Cooker Quinoa Casserole

Friday: Bestest Belgian Waffles, hashbrowns and bacon

Saturday: Enchilada Chicken Skillet with tortilla chips

Snack: Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins

March 17, 2017

Cinnamon Toast Crunch Bars

Now this is one of those, "why the heck did I not think of this sooner" recipes. But, for real. Crunchy, cinnamon-marshmallowy goodness?? What's not to love? And while l'm a faithful fan of original Rice Krispies treats, these might just be a new favorite.
These come together in 10 minutes or less and will be eaten in 5 minutes or less. They are so addicting and perfectly sweet.
You can either cut them up to serve them or just tear out a big chunk to snack on like I did, which results in them being gone faster of course.
Anyway, this a new treat that will be come a staple in your household and probably at every family gathering you attend from here on out!

Cinnamon Toast Crunch Bars
1/4 cup butter
4 cups miniature marshmallows
6 cups Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal 

1. Spray an 11x17 or 9x9-inch pan with cooking spray.
2. In a large pot, melt better over low heat. Add marshmallows and cook over medium-low heat until marshmallows are completely melted.
3. Once marshmallows are melted, remove pot from heat and add cereal to the pot, stirring to coat.
4. Press into prepared pan and cool. Cut into bars and serve.

March 15, 2017

Coconut Lime Chicken with Coconut Rice

This chicken and rice has changed my life you guys. Like, I will never be the same. Not only is the marinade on the chicken AMAZING, but the coconut rice is fantastic. There is so much flavor in this dish that you won't know what hit you!
I love that you not only soak the chicken in the marinade, but you use the marinade as a sauce, too. I think what makes it so different is the sweetness of it, which is perfect. It pairs so well with the coconut rice, too. In other words, you need to make this ASAP!

Coconut Lime Chicken with Coconut Rice
Adapted from Bite of Delight
2 large chicken breasts, butterfly if thick
1 Tbsp. olive oil

Marinade
3 Tbsp. olive oil
zest of 1 lime
juice of 1 lime
2 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp cumin
2 Tbsp. cilantro, chopped
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. honey
dash of cayenne
1 tsp. garlic, minced
1/2 cup coconut milk
lime wedges and cilantro for garnish

Coconut Rice
2 cups white rice
1 can coconut cream* (or coconut milk)
 2 1/4 cups water
1 tsp. salt

1. Combine all marinade ingredients in a ziploc bag or medium mixing bowl. Add chicken, making sure to coat with marinade. Marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
2. When ready to cook chicken, start the rice.  Add all rice ingredients to a large saucepan (or rice cooker). Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat, for 15 minutes.
3. Pour marinade into a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes.
4. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Place and cook chicken breasts 3-5 minutes per side until no longer pink and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. (Be careful not to overcook.)
5. Remove chicken from pan and thinly slice. Serve over coconut rice and top with cilantro and lime juice.

*You can find this at Trader Joe’s.