Fall Flavors – Cinnamon Sugar Mini Pumpkin Muffins

Today I have an amazing Fall-inspired recipe to share with you. This treat makes a perfect Friday Favorite because my daughter loves to make muffins and these are currently her most favorite mini muffins to bake. They are simple, absolutely delicious and whenever they are baking in the oven they make your whole house smell wonderfully Fall-filled :-).

She found the recipe for these muffins on one of our favorite food blogs – Sally’s Baking Addiction. Since we did not adapt the recipe at all, please click over to Sally’s site for the list of ingredients and printable version of the recipe.DSC_0900

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Customizable M&M Cookies

Cookies3Today I have a very versatile cookie recipe to share with you. These cookies are easy to make, delicious and they are an awesome treat to use for all types of occasions. By simply changing the color of the M&Ms you use when baking the cookies you can customize them so many different ways. You could use red and green M&Ms for a holiday cookie exchange. Pink and red M&Ms would make them the perfect Valentine’s Day treat for teachers. Use your school colors for a school bake sale item.   You might make them with the colors of your child’s sports team for an end of the year party. And the list could go on and on. In this house, we love to make them with the colors of our favorite NFL teams, so the version I share today will be Oakland Raiders M&M sugar cookies.

I recently made these cookies for my daughter’s birthday. The Oakland Raiders are her favorite football team and she chose to have a Raiders themed party this year. The cookies were a great addition to our dessert table.

The idea for NFL sugar cookies originally came from the blog Thirty Handmade Days. If you decide to make these for any football fans, please visit her site for some fun NFL printables to go with your treats. Please note, I did not use her recipe to make the cookies.

The recipe for the cookies was adapted from allrecipes.

M&M Sugar Cookies:

Makes approx. 5 dozen

Ingredients:

  • COOKIEPIC1 cup packed brown sugar
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 1 cup (two sticks) unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cups of M&M’s

Directions:

  1. Cookies2Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. Measure and then divide the M&Ms into two equal piles and set aside
  3. In a large bowl beat the butter and sugars with a kitchen aid or hand mixer until fluffy. Add the eggs, and vanilla and beat well.
  4. In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking soda and salt
  5. Add the flour/baking soda/salt mixture to the dough and beat on low just until combined
  6. Add 1/2 of the M&Ms and gently fold them into the dough
  7. Drop the cookie dough onto a lightly greased cookie sheet. I used a cookie scoop so my mine were all about one very rounded tablespoon.
  8. Take the remaining M&Ms and gently press them into the top of the cookies so you can clearly see the colors of the M&Ms you chose to cook with.
  9. Bake at 375 degrees for approx. 10 minutes or until the edges are lightly browning.Cookies5

Homemade Hummus

Today I am sharing a simple and delicious recipe for one of my family’s favorite snacks – homemade hummus. Our recent post on family meetings inspired me to write about this recipe because it is the perfect addition to the meetings we hold in our home. It helps keep the busy hands of my two young daughters occupied so they are less bored and able to keep a longer attention span as we move through our meeting.

I first came across the recipe over at the website, Inspired Taste (http://www.inspiredtaste.net/15938/easy-and-smooth-hummus-recipe/). Upon reading it, I couldn’t resist the urge to pull out the food processor and whip up a batch. It is so easy that within 10 minutes we were all enjoying it, and so good that within 10 more minutes it was gone! For my next family meeting, I will make sure to double the recipe. 🙂 Enjoy!

Note: I did not adapt this recipe so please use the link above for recipe and directions.

Hummus2

S’mores Fudge

August was a full and fulfilling month for us. As we detailed in our recent post, A Step back…A Step Forward, there were many memorable moments and one of the best was the bridal shower that we threw for our beautiful baby sister, Corrie. For me, the highlights of the celebration were spending time with very special family and friends and reveling in Corrie’s excitement about her upcoming wedding. Even better is the fact that I got to do these things while enjoying some amazing food. Several tasty treats were served, but one was so simple and delicious that I had to share the recipe with all of you. I also felt it was fitting to post a s’mores recipe this week because if you are anything like me, and struggling a bit to make that transition from relaxed summer routine to structured back to school schedule, this is the perfect dessert to enjoy as you take a brief moment to forget about homework, early bedtime and after school activities and daydream about late nights around a campfire instead ;).

The recipe I used is S’mores Fudge from The Novice Chef Blog

I did not adapt this recipe in any way, so please click on over to her website for ingredients and directions.

Smores

 

Kids in the Kitchen: Oven Baked Chicken Parmesan

ChickenParm2Today I am sharing a simple dinner recipe that my family loves.  This recipe is awesome because it is quick, easy and delicious!!  It is also an excellent recipe to use to get kids involved in dinner making.   Currently, this is my son Daniel’s favorite thing to make (pretty much on his own now) for dinner.  We originally found the recipe in his go-to cookbook, Cooking for Kids Bible.

Oven Baked Chicken Parmesan 

(For a printable version of this recipe, please click here: Chicken Parmesan Recipe)

IngredientsChickenParm4

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • ¾ cup Italian seasoned dry bread crumbs
  • 1 jar (26 ounces) spaghetti sauce
  • 1 ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese (about 6 ounces)
  • Pasta
    • Note on the Pasta: This really can be whatever pasta your family enjoys most. We used trottole that I found at Target. My kids love this type of pasta!

DirectionsChickenParm3

  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. Dip raw chicken in egg, then bread crumbs, coating well
  3. In a glass baking dish, arrange chicken breasts in a single row. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes.
  4. While chicken is baking, cook pasta according to directions on package
  5. Remove chicken from oven and pour the entire jar of pasta sauce over chicken.  Then top with cheese.
  6. Bake an additional 10 minutes or until chicken in no longer pink in center
  7. Serve chicken over hot pastaChickenParm1

Flag Mini Doughnut Muffins

While searching the web for a patriotic themed recipe, I saw a picture of mini cupcakes that had been frosted and arranged in such a way that the finished product looked like an American flag.  After seeing this, I immediately knew the prefect recipe to pull out and combine with this decorating idea to make my family a very special 4th breakfast treat! Instead of cupcakes, I made strawberry shortcake doughnut muffins. I originally found the recipe over on the blog Kevin & Amanda and the link to the recipe has been provided here: photo-5

http://www.kevinandamanda.com/recipes/breakfast/strawberry-shortcake-doughnut-muffins.html

These are a special sugary treat and since I appreciate a little indulgence on a holiday, I’m off to enjoy a doughnut and celebrate my independence!

Strawberry Shortcake Doughnut Muffins Recipe

  •  Makes 24 mini muffins

Ingredients: For Muffins:

  • 12 tablespoons (1.5 sticks) butter softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups (13.5 oz) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup milk

For Brown Butter Cinnamon Sugar:

  • 12 tablespoons (1.5 sticks) butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting:

  • 6 tablespoons butter softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 teaspoon Tahitian vanilla extract (I used regular vanilla extract)
  • 1 pint strawberries, sliced and cut in half
  • A handful of blueberries

Additional supplies (if desired):

  • 4th of July theme mini muffin cups
  • Any festive ribbon
  • Serving platter

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a mini-muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar for 5 minutes until soft, fluffy and lighter in color. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until just mixed in. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir a fourth of the dry ingredients into the batter. Then stir in a third of the milk. Continue mixing in the remaining dry and wet ingredients alternately, ending with the dry. Mix until well combined and batter is smooth, but be careful not to over-mix. Fill muffin tins with 1.5 tablespoons of batter (about 3/4ths full). Bake at 350 for 14-15 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.Recipe2 Brown Butter Cinnamon Sugar Crust: Melt the butter until it starts to bubble and then foam. When it starts to foam, whisk constantly for 1-2 minutes until it turns brown and you see brown flecks at the bottom of the pan. Immediately remove from heat and pour into a bowl for dipping. In a separate bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. When the muffins are just cool enough to handle, remove from the tin and dip them on all sides into the melted butter then roll in the cinnamon sugar.Recipe3Recipe4 Vanilla Buttercream Frosting Place the butter, sugar, milk and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 3-5 minutes. If necessary, add more milk, one tablespoon at a time, beating for 1-2 minutes after each addition until desired consistency is reached. Assembly If you chose to use muffin cups, drop the coated muffins into the muffin tins before frosting. Frost each of the muffins. Top four with blueberries and the remaining with strawberries and arrange them in a flag shape. So delicious and festive!photo-6 For a printable version of this recipe, click here: 4thofJulyMiniMuffinRecipe