Sunday, February 12, 2017

Baked Chicken Flautas

I borrowed this amazing picture from Six Sisters Stuff - the source of this recipe.  This is an easy and delicious dinner idea that we've had a few times since I discovered it a few months back.  

Baked Chicken Flautas
  • 4 cups cooked and shredded chicken (rotisserie chicken works great!)
  • 1 cup salsa verde (the green salsa)
  • 1 (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (14 oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 oz) can corn, drained
  • 1 1/2 cups colby jack shredded cheese, divided
  • 12-14 flour tortillas (soft taco size)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a large baking sheet (15x10x1") with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mix together chicken, salsa, cream cheese, black beans, corn, and 1 cup shredded cheese.
  4. Add 2-3 tablespoons of the chicken mixture and roll up, then place seam-side down on the prepared pan. Repeat this process until all the chicken mixture is used up. 
  5. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top of tortillas and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the tortillas start to turn golden brown (the edges of the tortilla will turn golden first).
  6. Remove from oven and serve with your favorite toppings (salsa, guacamole, sour cream, lettuce, etc).

Amazing Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies

A new pumpkin chocolate chip cookie recipe that I tried back in the fall.  Again from

Amazing Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies

  • 1 cup (2 sticks, 8 ounces) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup (3.75 ounces) brown sugar
  • 1 cup (7.5 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (9 ounces) pumpkin puree (see note above)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 1/2 cups (12.5 ounces) all-purpose flour (see note above)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 1/2 cups (9 ounces) chocolate chips

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone liners.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or using a handheld electric mixer, cream together the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add the vanilla, pumpkin, and water, and mix until combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the batter and mix until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  5. The dough will be very soft. Use a spoon or cookie scoop (I use my #40 cookie scoop) to drop the cookie dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheet.
  6. Bake for 10-11 minutes until the edges are set but the middles are still a little bit soft. When the cookies come out of the oven, lightly tap or drop the cookie sheet on the counter (this helps the thinner/chewy factor of the cookies but you won't get fired if you don't do it). If the cookies were taken out while still soft in the center, they'll flatten more as they cool. Let them cool 3-4 minutes on the baking sheet before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
  7. Repeat with remaining dough.
  8. These cookies taste great the day of, even better the next day, and they freeze great!

Chocolate Fudge Sour Cream Bundt Cake

I'm playing catch up tonight.  I made this bundt cake per Nathan's request for his birthday back in November.  It was simple and oh so good.  I found the recipe at

Chocolate Fudge Sour Cream Bundt Cake

For the Pan:
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder

For the Cake:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks, 8 ounces) butter
  • 1/3 cup (1.25 ounces) natural, unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 3/4 cup (8.75 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups (11.5 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 large eggs (3.5 ounces)
  • 3/4 cup (6 ounces) sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 to 2 cups (6 to 12 ounces) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips

For the Glaze:

  • 1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla

  1. Preheat the 350 degrees F. In a small bowl, mix together the butter and cocoa powder for the pan until the mixture is well-combined and pasty. Use a pastry brush or folded square of wax paper to wipe the cocoa/butter mixture into a 10- or 12-inch bundt pan until the inner surface is evenly coated.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine the butter, cocoa powder, salt and water. Heat until the butter is melted and whisk to combine well. Set aside to cool to room temperature (just slightly warm is ok, too, but let it cool more if it's overly warm or hot).
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and baking soda. Pour in the chocolate mixture and stir to combine.
  4. Add the eggs and whisk to combine. Stir in the sour cream and vanilla extract until the batter is smooth. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan and bake for 40-45 minutes until the top lightly springs back and the cake is baked through.
  6. Let the cake cool for 5-10 minutes in the pan before turning it out carefully onto a cooling rack to cool completely.
  7. For the glaze, place the chocolate chips in a medium bowl. Heat the cream to a simmer (either in the microwave or in a saucepan) and pour over the chocolate. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes without stirring. Add the vanilla and stir the mixture until it is glossy and smooth. The glaze will set up as it cools; if you want a thin drizzle, pour it over the cake while the glaze is still warm but if you want a thicker frosting, let it cool slightly.
  8. Once the cake is cooled, place it on a serving plate or cake stand and pour the glaze over the cake letting it drip down the sides.

Texas Sheet Cake

I made this for a teacher dinner I helped put on at the kids' school this last week.  It was my first time making Texas sheet cake and I will have to look no further for a good recipe.  This one was a winner. It came from  The recipe calls for a 10 x 15" pan so if your pan is larger or smaller you may need to adjust the recipe accordingly.  I tripled the recipe and spread it between two 11 x 17" metal pans and it worked out great.

Texas Sheet Cake

2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup sour cream
2 eggs
1 cup butter
1 cup water
5 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

6 Tbsp milk
5 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup butter
4 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 10x15 inch pan.

2) Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. Beat in the sour cream and eggs. Set aside. Melt the butter on low in a saucepan, add the water and 5 tablespoons cocoa. Bring mixture to a boil then remove from heat. Allow to cool slightly, then stir cocoa mixture into the egg mixture, mixing until blended.  **If I ever make this again, I will cook the chocolate mixture first so it can be cooling while I'm mixing the other ingredients.  

3) Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

4) For the icing: In a large saucepan, combine the milk, 5 tablespoons cocoa and 1/2 cup butter. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat. Stir in the confectioners' sugar and vanilla, then fold in the nuts, mixing until blended. Spread frosting over warm cake.  **It starts to harden up quickly so you have to time it so that the icing is ready at the same time the cake comes out of the oven.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Homemade Taco Seasoning

This is a great replacement for the taco seasoning packets that I'm used to buying.  I don't think I'll ever go back.  I doubled this recipe and put it in a spice jar so I'll have some on hand next time I need it.  I found this at Mel's Kitchen Cafe.

Homemade Taco Seasoning

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

  • Mix all spices together until well combined. Use immediately or store in an airtight container in your spice cabinet and use as needed.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Healthier Chocolate No-Bake Cookies

We've almost made it to the end of the month and the end of our no-sugar challenge.  These past few days have been the hardest for me.  I've been craving something sweet every day and tonight these no-bake cookies saved me.  This recipe comes from Mel's Kitchen Cafe.  They are plenty sweet without any sugar and pretty hearty too.  The almonds are optional but I added them and don't think I'd ever leave them out - I thought the nuttiness they added was perfect.  I also left out the chocolate chips because 1) I didn't have any bittersweet and 2) I'm assuming like most other chocolate chips they'd have sugar in them.  The cookies were great without!

Healthier Chocolate No-Bake Cookies

  • 1 cup natural peanut or almond butter
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 2 1/2 cups quick cooking or old-fashioned oats 
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped almonds

  1. In a medium saucepan, melt the peanut or almond butter and coconut oil over medium heat, stirring constantly, until melted and smooth. Off the heat, stir in the honey and vanilla until combined. 
  2. Immediately stir in the chocolate chips until melted (if the mixture is too cool to melt them completely, return the saucepan to low heat to help it along without bringing it to a simmer).
  3. Add the oats, cocoa powder and almonds and stir until well-combined. 
  4. Drop by heaping spoonfuls (the medium cookie scoop works great) onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Refrigerate until set. 
  5. The cookies will keep in a tupperware-type container (layered between sheets of wax paper or parchment) in the refrigerator for a week or more.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Banana Bread (or Muffins)

I've been making these muffins for a while now as part of our breakfast rotation.  The recipe came from 100 Days of Real Food and I love that it uses wholesome ingredients and honey instead of sugar!  These aren't as sweet as some of my other banana bread recipes but sweet enough.  And it helps that I'm usually a bit generous when measuring the honey.

Banana Bread (or Muffins)

  • 2 ¼ cup whole-wheat flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • ¼ cup plain yogurt (I use Greek yogurt.)
  • ¼ cup honey (I use as much as 1/3 c.)
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅓ cup oil (I use coconut oil.)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease pan.  Or place liners in muffin tin.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a separate bowl mix mashed bananas with yogurt, honey, eggs, oil, and vanilla.
  4. Fold the banana mixture into the flour mixture until blended. Do not overmix.
  5. Pour batter into prepared pan (or liners).
  6. Bake large loaf for 40 – 50 minutes or until it comes clean with a toothpick.  Bake muffins for approximately 15 minutes.