Wednesday, April 30, 2014

3 Bangin' Bean Dishes {Blast from the Past}

Unbelievably delicious! A cousin of mine (I wouldn't dare name her!) recently made this for her and her hubby...they shared some with a neighbor and then the 2 of them finished off the whole thing in one evening!

Guess we know things were really rootin' tootin' at their house that night!  =) 
(She said they simply couldn't stop eating it!) 

Crockpot Beans & Kraut Stew

A lovely assortment of beans, doctored up with burger, bacon and a few other ingredients. These are terrific for a reunion or potluck...they'll go quickly! 

Calico Beans

This simple recipe is best with fresh green beans, but frozen make for a great dish too.  MMM good!

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Copycat Starbucks Orange Cake (GF & Naturally Sweetened)

I've been making a number of 'Copycat' recipes lately, have you noticed? 

I was intrigued by this one for 3 main reasons...

It's Gluten Free...(uses almond flour) sweetened with agave nectar...and it's unusual, in that you boil 2 whole oranges for over an hour, and then grind the oranges, along with all the other ingredients, in the food processor.  

Not much work involved...MY kind of recipe! 

If you like orange peel, you'll LOVE this cake.  If not, you'll have to pass this one up! 

Truthfully, I've never had Starbucks Orange Cake, but you can be sure I am ELATED that now I can make it home and enjoy more than one piece!
Along with my Starbucks Caramel Frappaccino Light if I want!!!!

I wrapped each piece of cake in saran wrap and froze them.  They were just as tasty and moist when thawed as they were when I first baked them.

I was amazed! that after such a long baking time, how could it possibly be so moist??, but it is!!! In fact, it's SUPER moist!!

The ONLY thing I changed was to use regular sea salt, not the celtic sea salt called for in the recipe. 

I suggest to begin checking for doneness after 35 browned rather quickly. 

For the simple recipe & ingredient list, go to Elana's Pantry..
she has some other FABULOUS Gluten-Free recipes there too! 

Linked to Weekend Potluck

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Sunday, April 27, 2014

Homemade Copycat KFC Coleslaw

Thanks to Mariah from The Simple Parent who shared this lovely recipe at

This is simple and delicious - it makes a big batch too.  I shared with a grieving family. 

Hope you enjoy it soon.  It's soo easy because it begins with a bag of coleslaw mix - the hard work is done for you. 

It's great for potlucks, picnics or just having on hand for a meal. 


1 (1 lb.) package pre-shredded coleslaw mix with cabbage and carrots 
2 TB. minced onion
1/3 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 c. milk
1/2 c. mayo
1/4 c. buttermilk
1-1/2 TBS white vinegar
2-1/2 TB. lemon juice
Dried Parsley Flakes 

Place coleslaw mix in a large bowl. Add onions. Mix well. (Place mix in a food processor and pulse to shred a little finer if you desire the same texture as KFC serves.)

In a medium bowl combine buttermilk, milk, mayo, sugar, salt, pepper, vinegar, and lemon juice. Whisk well. Pour over cabbage mix. Stir well. Sprinkle with dried parsley.

Chill for at least 2 hours or overnight before serving.

Linked to Weekend Potluck
                Meal Plan Monday

A similar recipe -

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Friday, April 25, 2014

Pina Colada Fruit Dip & Weekend Potluck #115

Always so happy to have you sharing your yummies at our virtual table! 
When I share something worth sharing...again...

This simple and creamy fruit dip is a winner with everyone who tries it. 
Perfect for summertime parties...(Sugar free option) 

Now, let's take a quick peek back at last week...

The recipe with the most clicks was ~

Cheeseburger Quesadillas
Cheeseburger Quesadillas by Of The Hearth

Recipes that caught our attention ~

Strawberry Pretzel Bars by Life With The Crust Off

Revolutionary Mac and Cheese by Sugar Cookies to Peterbilts

And, a personal favorite ~

Onion Straws by Coffee With Us 3

Your hostesses ~

Remember that when you link up, it shows on all FIVE blogs. Plus…


Linky Guidelines:

If you wish to be a featured recipe or for us to promote your recipe either on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest, you MUST follow these instructions.
  1. Please link up to your exact post and not the main page to your blog.
  2. LINK BACK HERE from your post so that others can find the fun. (Need help linking back? Read this or watch this great instructional video Please use a direct link within your post.
When you are kind enough to follow our guidelines, we work hard to get you as much exposure as possible so that your time here is well invested. We want this to be a fun and rewarding experience for everyone!

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Thursday, April 24, 2014

Crockpot Family-Favorite Chili

Thank you Betty Crocker for this tasty chili. 

I had already thawed 2# of burger, not knowing what I'd do with it.  Then...

We had a cold and rainy day and it was the perfect time to cook up some chili.  We like chili even when it's warm outside, but that hasn't happened in these parts just yet! 

I googled crockpot chili and here's what I landed on...hope you enjoy too.

I tweaked it just a bit by using part salsa for the tomato sauce. I was out of chili powder, so I used a chili seasoning mix packet, so use whatever suits your fancy to season this hearty dish. 


2# lean (at least 80%) ground beef
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 (28 ozs) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (16 ozs) can chili beans in sauce, undrained
1 (8 ozs) can zesty tomato sauce
1 c. favorite salsa 
(Or just use 15 ozs. tomato sauce and no salsa)
2 Tb. chili powder
1-1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. salt & pepper, each 
(I used chili seasoning packet and eliminated these spices) 

In large skillet, brown beef and onion; drain.

In 3 - 4 qt. slow cooker, mix beef, onion and remaining ingredients.

Set your slow cooker on low for 6 - 8 hours...or high for 3 - 4. 

Linked to Weekend Potluck
Whatcha Crockin Wednesday

A similar recipe - 

Simple Cheesey Hamburger Soup

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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Leader Enterprise - April 23, 2014 - Couponing

I have always been a coupon-er. I wanted to share some practical ideas to help you save money as you choose what to purchase to stock your pantry and refrigerator. 

Using coupons is a great way to stretch your family’s budget. There are available coupons for things other than groceries too, like restaurants, toys,and even vacations. Experiment using coupons to help you save up to 90% to try new products you wouldn’t normally buy but will practically put to use.

My blogging friend, Tonya, author of the 4 Little Fergusons blog, recently saved a bundle using coupons. After caring for her ill father-in-law in her home before his death, she didn't do any 'serious'grocery shopping for 5 weeks. When she finally got to stock up, her grocery bill came to $749. She paid 'only' $400 because of coupons! Now that's inspiration!

Buying one or more Sunday papers that include coupon books, is a great way to get stocked up on savings. Check out websites, like  that offer coupons for cents on the dollar or that offer tutorials to help you get started in the couponing game. Maybe you have a friend who will give you their coupons? It never hurts to ask especially if those savings are being tossed in the trash.

Many may not realize that expired coupons can be mailed to the military. They are able to use them up to 6 months after expiration. One site to check out more details is What a simple thing to do to help and support our troops and their families.

Make it a goal to only buy grocery items on sale and with a coupon. Plan meals around those purchases.

Whether or not you are new to couponing or you’re a seasoned saver, one of the first steps you need to consider is how to store and organize your coupons. I would suggest you always carry your coupons with you. Even though you think you’re running into the store for one item, you might see something on sale or on the clearance rack that you have a coupon for, so you’ll want it handy.

It might work for you to tuck your clipped coupons into a simple envelope. Or mark several envelopes with categories. Or according to expiration dates. Do what works best for you.

Maybe you’d prefer, as I do, an expanding file that is wallet size and easy to carry in your purse. Make sure it has tabs on top of the pockets to mark them as you wish. Another idea is to use a small recipe box with alphabetical dividers.

Whenever I place my clipped coupons inside the file, I always place the newest ones at the back. It helps keep the oldest coupons (with nearing expiration dates) in the front of each category.

Here's a couple of cute, fun things to make for our upcoming Easter holiday. These are simple enough the kids can help.


1 c. shredded coconut
4 c. Frosted Mini Wheats (Regular or Chocolate)
2 c. milk chocolate chips
waxed paper
round bowl for shaping
Cadbury Mini Eggs or jelly beans or fruit(for eggs)

Place Frosted Mini Wheats in a large bowl and break up. Add coconut and toss until mixed well. Using a double boiler, (or a heat-safe bowl set over pot of boiling water) melt chocolate. Pour melted chocolate over wheat mixture and mix up until the chocolate evenly coats.

Using wax paper, line a round bowl that you will use for shaping the nest. Form the nests, either in the muffin tins or on the tray. Make sure to make a little center for your eggs. Place bowls of nests in your refrigerator to harden. When they are hardened, simply pull the wax paper and they should pop right out.Place your choice of eggs in the center of your nest and use as a table decoration.
(Freezing Directions): You can make these ahead and simply place them in a gallon freezer bag until you are ready to use. Take out of freezer and serve.(Displaying them frozen can help them last longer as a display item.)


1 (6 oz.) butterscotch morsels
1/2 c. peanut butter
5 c. corn flakes
Jelly beans

Melt peanut butter and morsels. Stir in corn flakes and blend until coated. Drop on waxed paper and make a center. Chill and fill with jelly beans or whatever candy you desire. 

I love the combo of sweet potatoes and apples (applesauce) cooked together. A wonderful recipe when you need the oven for baking other things. This is a lower-calorie/sugar recipe also.


2 lbs. sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2" cubes
(about 4 medium potatoes)
1 c. unsweetened applesauce
1/4 c. brown sugar, packed
1 Tb. water
3 Tb. (diet) margarine, melted
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 c. chopped pecans, toasted 

Place prepared sweet potatoes in crockpot sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Mix remaining ingredients, except pecans; spoon over potatoes. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours or until potatoes are very tender. Toast pecans in ungreased skillet over medium low heat for 5-7 minutes (or place in bowl in microwave-heat in 1 minute increments, stirring between each, until you can smell that nutty fragrance.) Sprinkle pecans over sweet potatoes; serve immediately. Yield: 6 servings 

May you all enjoy a Blessed Easter season as we celebrate the Risen Savior. 

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3 Bommin' Bake Sale 'Babes' {Blast from the Past}

Begins with a brownie mix...tastes like a Buckeye!  OH MY!!! 

Chocolate Chips meet up with Cream Cheese...what's not to LOVE?? 

Two simple recipes that leave folks begging for more...

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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Glazed Carrots & Pineapple

I know...maybe you're sick of food for a few days...fixing it OR eating it!
We do tend to overdo on holidays sometimes huh? 

I always THINK I'm going to keep our brunch simple, but it always ends up seeming like it's just too much! 

Well even if you don't want to do much cooking in the next few days, I do hope you'll consider fixing this dish soon.  It's OH SO tasty. It would be a great addition to any meal. 

I have always loved 'dressing up' veggies. I think it makes them a little more inviting, especially for those who aren't wild about veggies.

When I saw this lovely recipe Sheena was sharing at 
Hot Eats & Cool Reads I knew I would be adding it to our Easter brunch.  It was delicious...and so were the few leftovers!

I reduced the amount of sugar, just because we all need to limit our intake, so feel free to add more brown sugar, if that's not a problem for you. 

AND THE NEXT TIME...I will sprinkle it with toasted almonds for a special touch!!!!! 


2 c. baby carrots
1- (20 oz.) can pineapple tidbits or chunks, drained
4 tsp. cornstarch
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 c. packed brown sugar

(I used a heaping 1/4 c.)
1 Tb. butter
black pepper to taste

Steam or boil the carrots in a medium saucepan until crisp tender; drain.

Remove from pan.

In a small dish, combine a small amount of the pineapple juice from the can and the cornstarch until smooth. Pour the rest of the pineapple juice into the saucepan. Add cinnamon, brown sugar, butter and black pepper. Bring to a boil, add the cornstarch mixture and cook and stir for 3 minutes or until thickened. Stir in the carrots and pineapple; heat until hot. 

Linked to Weekend Potluck

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Sunday, April 20, 2014

No Sew T-Shirt Bag Tutorial

While we were in Florida this winter, one of the most fun things I did was teach gals how to make these bags.  One friend told me "You've created a monster!" because she made soo many bags and ended up teaching several others. =) 

She had found some 'cutsie' t-shirts and made bags in which she was going to put her granddaughter's Easter items in, like sunglasses and wrapped candies. 

It's simple and takes about 10 - 15 minutes to do.  They make great gifts! You can personalize a t-shirt for someone special and then make it into a bag.  I suggest using a zipper pouch to carry small items. 

I had a blast recently getting to show a local group of ladies how to make bags. We had such an enjoyable evening together!

You'll never look at t-shirts the same way again!


Items Needed:
L, XL or XXL 100% Cotton T-shirt
Sharp Scissors

1.      Lay Shirt flat – cut out neckline – options:
Round, square or v-neck, cutting about 1/3 of the way over into the shoulder seam.  
2.      Cut off sleeve inside of seam
3.      Cut off the hem, both sides at once.

4.      Cut strip along longest part of sleeve, then cut in half. Set aside.
5.      Cut up each side of shirt – 4” – 8” long
6.      Cut strips, about finger-length wide, but up to 3/4" wide.

7.      Using matching top and bottom strips, tie into a double knot, repeating until all are tied.
8.      Pull on strips and to make the ‘fringe’.
9.      Gather shoulder seam, tie with strip from sleeve. Double knot it – pull to curl.

VOILA!  You’ve done it!!

Now go find more shirts to make more fun. *-*

(Here's 3 bags my 'Monster' Friend Jeanette made!! 
Adorable huh?)

Here's a couple of simple tutorials for making scarves from t-shirts...

Infinity Scarf (takes almost 2 minutes!!)

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