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Five Easy Dinner Recipes

May 23, 2017

I do not consider myself a gourmet chef by any stretch of the imagination and after a long day at work, my culinary creativity is probably at its all time low.  But I also believe in putting healthy homemade food on our table every night (well almost every night) for dinner. So I turn to a few really easy go-to dinner recipes that are delicious, simple and a crowd pleaser.

Zoodles Marinara (Zucchini Noodles with Chunky Tomato Sauce)

I’m pretty sure I’ve sung the praises of this zoodle recipe before, but if not, consider this a full concert worth of love. This dish is easy and so good, plus it’s good for you. I do up the red pepper a bit and usually only make two servings instead of four (yay for extra sauce), but otherwise it’s perfect.

Quick Dinner: Skillet Chicken with Creamy Cilantro Lime Sauce

The first time I made this for A, he proclaimed it to be the best thing I’d ever made. So I kept making it. Now, here’s a secret: the best part is totally the sauce. So in our house, we only cook two chicken breasts, but still cook the full sauce recipe. I do tend to up the red pepper and totally eyeball just about everything else, but I’ve yet to be disappointed. We generally have it with green beans and brown rice and there are never any leftovers.

Now, to be fair, this pork chop recipe is one that A makes mainly because I’m not allowed to use the grill. But it was one I found, so I’m taking credit for it! Definitely get bone-in pork chops and don’t be shy when it comes to the seasoning and butter. We leave out the lemon rind, but you will totally want to lick your dish when you’re done.

What’s for Dinner? Hummus Chicken!

Full disclosure, this is one of my recipes (and so is the next one), but when they’re this easy, how can you resist? Hummus chicken started out as something I just made because A liked it, but it’s quickly become one of my go-to weeknight meals. Probably because I could make it in my sleep, but also because I’ve gotten the recipe just the way I like it.

What’s For Dinner? Homemade Chicken Tenders

Last, but certainly not least, are these chicken fingers. I know, chicken fingers for dinner seems a little childish, but so what? They’re really good and since you’re breading them yourself, they can be customized to your taste buds.  We like things a bit on the spicy side in my house so these have a bit of a kick, but you could easily tone them down (or pump them up!)

What are your go-to dinner recipes?


Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

April 25, 2017
Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

You know why I like baking? Because if I follow the recipe carefully and stick to it, I will have a great turnout almost 100% of the time. You know why my husband doesn’t like baking? Because in order to have a great turnout at all, you need to stick to a recipe. That is just not his thing. Luckily he’s really good at eating what I bake which works out perfectly for both of us. My latest kitchen victory? These triple chocolate chip cookies.

This recipe is a spin-off of my go-to chocolate chip cookie, but with a “let’s clean out the pantry” twist. I may occasionally purchase a bag of chocolate chips for a recipe, forgetting that I already have some at home. Over time, this results in 15 partially used bags of chocolate chips clogging up your pantry and a batch of triple chocolate chip cookies.

Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

I used a combination of milk, white and semi-sweet chocolate chips because that’s what I had on hand, but you could certainly use whatever combination your heart desires/your pantry contains. Like my regular chocolate chip cookie, these bad boys stay super soft and chewy even days later (if they last that long, of course).


  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 (scant) cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Equal parts semi-sweet, milk and white chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Beat butter and sugars together, until creamy.
3. Add vanilla and egg.
4. Combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl.
5. Mix dry ingredients into butter-sugar mixture.
6. Add chocolate chips.
7. Using a cookie scoop, place balls of cookie dough onto a non-stick cookie sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes or until cookies are barely golden brown.

Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe


Peppermint Hot Chocolate Fudge Recipe

December 13, 2016

Every year, my office has a mini holiday celebration that we call Dough Day. It involves a whole day of eating, talking about what you’re going to eat next and then eating some more. The 2016 version was yesterday and I still feel full. But not so full that I don’t wish I had some more of my contribution: this peppermint hot chocolate fudge recipe.

Y’all. It was so tasty that I’m not at all surprised none was left for me to take home yesterday. And I would have too. But luckily, in addition to being delicious, this peppermint hot chocolate fudge recipe is also so easy to make. A second batch may already be in the works and I probably won’t share this time around.


The key to a good fudge recipe is the chewiness factor and this recipe has one that’s literally off the charts! Ok I’m not sure if there is such a thing, but I believe there should be. I’m willing to make fudge repeatedly until we have the science ready to create one. Sorry. I got distracted. It’s probably the leftover sugar high.

The fudge itself isn’t overly pepperminty, but the recipe can certainly be adjusted to give it a stronger peppermint flavor. Peppermint extract can be intense and the crushed candy canes are also fairly strong, so I would suggest testing a batch before upping either flavor, unless you know you’re a fan.



Peppermint Hot Chocolate Fudge Recipe

You’ll need:

  • 1 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 3 cups of milk chocolate chips
  • 1 T cocoa unsweetened powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp peppermint extract
  • 3-4 crushed candy canes
  • Mini marshmallows
  1. Line a 9×9 baking dish with aluminum foil.
  2. Crush candy canes.
  3. Add sweetened condensed milk to a deep saucepan over low to medium heat.
  4. Add in cocoa powder and stir until thoroughly combined.
  5. Add the chocolate chips and stir until chips are melted. The mixture is going to get thick very quickly so consider stirring fudge your arm workout for the day.
  6. Add in extracts and stir until combined.
  7. Pour fudge into baking dish.
  8. Top with candy cane pieces and mini marshmallows, pressing them gently into the top of the fudge.
  9. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours and cut into pieces. Refrigerate again overnight or until eaten.



Cookie in a Cup Recipe

November 15, 2016

Sometimes you just need a cookie, am I right? Nothing says “everything is going to be ok” like a warm chocolate chip cookie. But sometimes you don’t want to make an entire batch of cookies because you know, health and whatnot. That’s when this cookie in a cup recipe jumps in to save the day!

I originally learned this recipe when I was in college because what says stress eating better than college finals? At the time, I was pretty confident that I had no skills in the kitchen whatsoever, but found this recipe super quick and easy. Once I got over the egg separation part, this recipe quickly became one of my favorites and still is to this day. Because who can say no to warm chocolate chips?

Not this girl.


Super easy and just big enough to share (or not share depending on how your day has gone), this cookie in a cup recipe is the perfect treat, especially when you add a glass of milk.

You’ll need:

  • 1 T butter, melted
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 1 T granulated sugar
  • Splash of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 C flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 T chocolate chips
  1. Melt butter in microwave safe cup.
  2. Add in egg yolk and mix thoroughly.
  3. Stir in sugars and vanilla.
  4. Add flour and salt. Stir until combined.
  5. Add in chocolate chips and mix thoroughly.
  6. Microwave for 1 min and 20 seconds for a soft cookie. A full 90 seconds will give you a drier cookie.



Cinnamon Apple Coffee Cake Recipe

October 12, 2016
Cinnamon apple coffee cake

You know who makes you feel good about your cooking abilities? Boys, specifically my husband and his two brothers. I had all three boys in my house this past weekend and by bedtime on Sunday, I felt like Julia Child! Everything I put in front of them was gone almost instantly and they continued to rave about it long after the dishes were done.

Seriously. It was enough to make a girl blush!

Of course they immediately ruined it by telling me that they eat just about anything, but I chose to ignore that.

Cinnamon apple coffee cake

One of their favorites was this cinnamon apple coffee cake that was our dessert on Sunday. I wanted something easy that tastes like fall, but wasn’t pumpkin flavored. And then I thought about my ridiculous obsession with going apple picking at the many (non-existent) orchards nearby. Clearly, apples needed to go into this bad boy as well.

So I went into the kitchen and got started. About an hour later, this cinnamon apple coffee cake came out of the oven and I was in love. I wasn’t the only one! I actually had to fight the boys off the last few pieces in order to have any left for photos!

Cinnamon apple coffee cake

This cake is so stinking good that I don’t really blame them. The inside is all soft and chewy with just a hint of apple throughout. The apple was cut fairly fine so it almost melted into the rest of the batter, but if you like bigger chunks of apple, then feel free to cut the apple into larger pieces. But the best part is probably all that tasty, crunchy, sweet crumble on top! I’m legit going to have to fight A for the last piece of this cinnamon apple coffee cake, I can already tell.

Cinnamon apple coffee cake

I opted to serve this like bar cookies which was good because it maximized my servings, something that’s necessary with all those guys around. Then I really blew their mind and plopped a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. All hail the dessert queen!

Cinnamon Apple Coffee Cake Recipe

You’ll need

  • For the crumb topping
    • 1 cup flour
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 stick cold cubed butter
  • For the cake
    • 2 sticks of butter
    • 2 cups brown sugar
    • 2 eggs
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
    • 2 1/2 cups flour
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1 Gala apple, finely chopped (you could certainly add more if you’d like!)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 13 baking pan with tin foil. Spray tin foil lightly with cooking spray.
  2. Combine dry ingredients for the crumb topping. Cut in cold butter with a fork or pastry blender, until large clumps form.
  3. Melt two sticks of butter and let cool slightly.
  4. Combine brown sugar, eggs and vanilla using a stand mixer.
  5. With the mixer on low, slowly add the melted butter and mix until combined.
  6. Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and then add to wet ingredients.
  7. Fold apple in gently.
  8. Pour batter into baking pan and top with crumble.
  9. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  10. Allow to cool completely before slicing and serving.