Crispy Baked Sweet Potato Fries

by amy on 4 November 2014

Crispy Sweet Potato FriesI’m always looking for new side dishes to serve with dinners. I’m pretty creative and adventurous when it comes to the entree, but for the accompaniments, I tend to fall back on making the same (delicious but not terribly exciting) side dishes over + over again. My husband loves sweet potato fries, and frequently orders them at restaurants, so I decided to try making a healthier, non-fried version myself at home. And I’m so glad I did, because they turned out SO good!

They’re delightfully crisp (+ insanely addictive), with a wonderful sweet-salty-spicy flavor. And they’re super simple to make – you simply peel + chop your sweet potato into fry-shaped pieces, toss with some cornstarch and your desired seasonings, then bake them until they reach that perfectly crispy texture. Since they’re baked, not fried, you don’t have to feel guilty about indulging in them. Fearless Baby absolutely loved them, and since they’re packed with good-for-you calcium, vitamin A and vitamin C, I didn’t have to hold her back in enjoying them. =) I can’t wait for y’all to give these a try soon – I have a feeling that you’re going to love them as much as we do!

Sweet Potato Fries, before and after baking! continue reading →

EmailTwitterFacebookStumbleUponGoogle BookmarksShare

{ 21 comments }

Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars

by amy on 26 October 2014

Caramel Apple Cheesecake BarsToday, I’m participating in a fun blogger event — the Secret Recipe Club. How does it work? Every blogger is secretly assigned another blog + chooses a recipe from that blog to make. On reveal day (today!), all of our posts go up at the same time, + everyone gets to see who was assigned to their blog, which recipe they chose, + how it turned out. Fun, huh?

I was thrilled to be assigned Confessions of a Cooking Diva, a fabulous blog full of comfort food recipes + amazing-looking desserts – my favorites! I decided to go with something autumn-ish, and make her Apple-Pecan Cheesecake, but with a few changes. I skipped the nuts, since Fearless Baby doesn’t love ‘em, + added a rich caramel drizzle instead, because apples + caramel = SO good. I made it in a 9×9 dish (instead of springform pan), opting to make cheesecake bars/squares instead of traditional slices. So, how did they turn out? AMAZING! There’s a buttery graham cracker layer, a divine cinnamon cheesecake layer, + a topping of tender cinnamon-sugar apples + sweet caramel. This is seriously one of the most delicious fall desserts I’ve had – y’all must give it a try soon!

continue reading →

EmailTwitterFacebookStumbleUponGoogle BookmarksShare

{ 36 comments }

Stuffed Peppers

by amy on 16 October 2014

Stuffed Peppers {With Beef + Tomato Rice}I was a pretty picky eater as a child, especially about any type of meat. However, even in my pickiness, my mom made a few meat-centered meals that I absolutely LOVED, and still do now — especially American Chop Suey, Homemade Meatballs with Pasta, and Stuffed Peppers. Two of those three meals I’ve already put my own spin on and blogged about, so I figured it was time to do the same for stuffed peppers! After experimenting/recipe-testing with different versions over the last few months, I have settled on what I think are the perfect stuffed peppers. =)

My version is actually fairly similar to what we ate growing up, just with a little more pizzaz. =) First, I take bright, fresh bell peppers, halve them + par-boil them. Then, I make an amazingly-flavorful homemade seasoned tomato rice. Then, I saute up a mixture of onions, ground beef, tomatoes, and spices. Finally, I combine the rice + meat mixture, stuff it generously in those pepper halves, drizzle with tomato sauce, + bake until browned + pipin’ hot. The result? Seriously, the BEST stuffed peppers I have ever had, bursting with tons of flavor + depth. This recipe serves 4-6, but is easily doubled or tripled, if you’re serving a crowd. And if you have leftovers, no problemo – these heat up wonderfully straight from the fridge + freeze great for future meals, too!

continue reading →

EmailTwitterFacebookStumbleUponGoogle BookmarksShare

{ 21 comments }

Pumpkin Pie Baked Oatmeal

by amy on 8 October 2014

Pumpkin Pie Baked OatmealI’m always looking for new breakfast ideas for my family. For lunches and dinners, I’m pretty creative with recipes, but for breakfast, I tend to make the same few things over and over again. So, when I was looking recently for a new breakfast that my husband, myself, and 16-month-old Fearless Baby would all enjoy, I decided to try baked oatmeal. A lot of my friends swear by baked oatmeal as a delicious, kid-friendly food, but surprisingly, I had never eaten it before. I looked up a bunch of recipes and settled on this pumpkin pie version, because nothing says autumn like pumpkin, + I’m a huuuuge pumpkin pie fan.

How did it turn out? Heavens, this stuff is amazing! Why did it take me so long to try it? I had assumed that the texture would be chewy (like a chewy oat or granola bar), but I was wrong. It’s super soft, like a cake or bread pudding, which was lovely. It tastes fantastic, too – full of pumpkin flavor + warming fall spices. I loved it warm, straight out of the oven, topped with a little whipped cream, but it’s also great cold from the fridge, served with milk, yogurt, or maple syrup. It reheats wonderfully, so it’s a great recipe to make on Sunday, ensuring that you have scrumptious breakfasts for the week. And as I hoped, Fearless Baby loved it as much as we did. A delicious, simple, adult-AND-kiddo-approved meal? You can’t beat that!

continue reading →

EmailTwitterFacebookStumbleUponGoogle BookmarksShare

{ 22 comments }

Chicken Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells

by amy on 1 October 2014

Chicken Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed ShellsI love the combination of chicken, broccoli, and alfredo sauce (or really, any cream or cheese sauce). I’ve had that combination in many pasta dishes, rice dishes, and casseroles, but had never tried it in stuffed pasta shells until I made this meal a couple months ago, and now I am totally hooked on it in this form. This recipe has become a regular in our household, since it is SO delicious, super simple to prepare, makes fantastic leftovers AND is loved by both the adults + Fearless Baby. Whenever a recipe can cover all four of those things, I’m sold!

In this recipe, tender shredded chicken is tossed with rich alfredo sauce, cheddar + parmesan cheeses, + chopped broccoli, then stuffed generously into jumbo pasta shells, topped with a little more cheese (you can never have too much!), and baked until bubbly and golden brown. Mmmm. I am seriously making myself SO hungry just thinking about this recipe again! It makes about 20 stuffed shells, which serves 4-5 people as a main dish, but it is easily doubled + prepped ahead of time, so it would be fantastic for a big family get-together or party, too. I can’t wait for y’all to try this meal + I hope you love it as much as we do!

continue reading →

EmailTwitterFacebookStumbleUponGoogle BookmarksShare

{ 20 comments }