Baked Breakfast Empanadas

Since the entire country seems to be experiencing the next ice age I thought I would share a yummy recipe for some warm comfort food.  Empanadas!

Baked Breakfast Empanadas

If you have never had empanadas before then I suggest you remedy that very quickly, because they are tasty!  All an empanada is, is a flaky pastry filled with any kind of savory ingredient.  You usually find them in Latin or Spanish countries.  I first had empanadas when I went to Colombia with one of my college roommates and we would just buy them from the carts on the street corners.  So.good.  And they are surprisingly easy to make from your very own home, no street corner needed.

Baked Breakfast Empanadas

You’ll need: Goya empanada discos,  eggs, onion, mushrooms, green chiles, cheese, and ground sausage.

A quick note about the Goya empanadas.  There is a certain type that I like the best and they look like this:

Baked Breakfast Empanadas

I think they are the flakiest and bake the best.  Empanadas are typically fried, but these bake up perfectly and that is much healthier.  However when I went to the grocery store to pick up the ingredients to make these they were out of my favorite empanada dough!  But they did have another type that was very…orange?

Baked Breakfast Empanadas

Despite their bright orange color they were pretty tasty and worked just fine.  Not a big deal to make the switch.  But if you do happen to see the other kind, grab those first!

Okay…now to start with you’ll want to begin browning your sausage in a skillet over medium heat.  While the meat is browning dice your mushrooms and onions.

Baked Breakfast EmpanadasOnce they’re diced add the onion and the mushrooms, along with your can of green chiles to the sausage.  Cook until the sausage is completely browned and the onion and mushrooms are soft and tender.  Pour the mixture into a bowl and set aside.  In the same skillet scramble your eggs.  Cooking in the same skillet will ensure you get all the yummy flavoring from the meat and veggies.  Once the eggs are scrambled add the sausage mixture back into the skillet and mix together.  Remove it from the heat.

Now each little empanada needs to be rolled out slightly.  I just grabbed a glass and quickly gave each one a roll before putting a small spoonful of the eggs/sausage into the middle of the dough.  Top with a sprinkle of cheese.

Baked Breakfast Empanadas Baked Breakfast EmpanadasFold the empanada in half and seal the edges by pressing them together with your fingers.  You can also crimp the edges with a fork to make them look pretty, but it isn’t really necessary as long as the edges get sealed.

Baked Breakfast EmpanadasRepeat until all your empanadas are filled and then place on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.  I sometimes have a little bit of the filling left over but no worries!  Put it in the fridge and then the next day you can mix it up with some hash browns and you have a great filling for breakfast burritos.  Two meals in one!

Baked Breakfast EmpanadasBake for 20-25 minutes or until the empanadas are golden brown, slightly crispy, and flaky.  As you can imagine these are pretty versatile with what you can put inside and I’ll share some of my other favorite fillings later.  But for now, enjoy these tasty empanadas for breakfast, or lunch or dinner!

Baked Breakfast Empanadas

Download the Recipe PDF

Baked Breakfast Empanadas

A Treat that is Fun to Say and Fun to Eat

Today I thought I’d share a recipe for a tasty treat that is almost as fun to say as it is to eat!  This is a recipe that my aunt has made for years and years, and every time they are made they get devoured.  They’re Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters!

Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters, a yummy holiday treat!

Like most of my recipes the ingredient list is nice and short.  You’ll need:

- A large bowl

- Wax paper

- 11.5 oz bag of Milk Chocolate Chips (melted)

- 2 1/2 Cups of Coconut

- Marshmallows approx. 5 cups

- 1/2 Cup of Nuts (whatever kind you like, pecans, walnuts, etc.)

Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters, a yummy holiday treat!

In a large bowl pour your nuts and marshmallows and then cover them with your melted chocolate chips.  Stir until all the nuts and marshmallows are covered.  Hence the reason for the big bowl, the stirring can get messy.

Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters, a yummy holiday treat!Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters, a yummy holiday treat!

Once you have everything all nice and combined spread the mixture along one side of the wax paper in a log shape and sprinkle it with coconut.  Start to roll and continue sprinkling with coconut as you roll it in the wax paper.

Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters, a yummy holiday treat!Place the rolled log into the refrigerator to harden and once it has set up you can slice them into pieces.

Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters, a yummy holiday treat! Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters, a yummy holiday treat!

Rolling the mixture in the wax paper can be a little tricky but keep working at it until you have it in a general log shape.  After they are sliced you won’t be able to tell if if was perfectly even or not.  And all anyone will care about is how yummy they taste!

Choco-Mallow Coco-Nutters, a yummy holiday treat!


Chocolate Spoons+Hot Chocolate+Mugs= Great Gift!

If you missed Tuesday’s Giveaway Post then you’ll want to make sure you head over and check it out!  You have the chance to win some of the most adorable and affordable little girl accessories and outfits.  Seriously, this is one of my favorite sponsors yet!  And look how cute their items look on my little girl!

Girl's Crochet Headbands Christmas******************************************************

Okay, now onto today’s post.

Here is another cute and easy gift idea that will be perfect for lots of people on your list!  Or it may be a fun family night activity with some yummy treats that you can all enjoy together.  Either way, this is a must do for the holiday season!

Chocolate Spoons and Hot Chocolate Mugs

These cute little mugs are filled with a bag of hot chocolate and if you need a delicious hot chocolate recipe then may I recommend my very favorite hot chocolate drink?  Since it makes so much it is perfect to make it to give away and keep some for yourself.

The little spoons inside the cups are the fun activity and make great stirring sticks when you’re drinking your cocoa.  They look fancy but couldn’t be easier!  To make them you’ll need some chocolate chips, plastic spoons, small cellophane bags, a wax paper lined tray, and toppings of your choice- marshmallows, toffee bits, sprinkles, peppermint pieces, Andes candy bits, mini chocolate chips, etc.

Chocolate Spoons and Hot Chocolate MugsYou’ll need to melt your chocolate first and here is a great tip on the easiest way to melt your chocolate when baking.  Melt it in your crock pot!  Put your chocolate chips into jars and place the jars into the crock pot.  Fill your crock pot up with warm water until it reaches half way up the jars.  *make sure you don’t spill any of the water into the jars.  It will seize up the chocolate, harden it, and make it melt.  keep the inside of the jars dry!*  Turn the crock pot onto high and in about 30 minutes it will be completely melted.  Stir occasionally while it is melting.

Melting Chocolate in a crock-pot...genius!

That may seem like a long time to wait for the chocolate to melt, but since the crock pot is continually keeping the jars warm the chocolate will stay nice and melted through the entire time.  No pulling it in and out of the microwave or accidentally burning the chocolate.  No re-heating, no clumping chocolate, etc.  Once it is all melted you can turn the crock pot to low or warm.

Melting Chocolate in a crock-pot...genius!

Once your chocolate is ready dip your plastic spoon in until it is nicely coated and allow the excess to drip off.

Melting Chocolate in a crock-pot...genius!Lay the spoons down on a wax paper lined cookie sheet and sprinkle the top of the spoon with your toppings.  In the baking aisle they have so many “bits” that work great for this project, or you can take almost any candy and crush it into bits yourself.

Chocolate Spoons and Hot Chocolate Mugs Chocolate Spoons and Hot Chocolate MugsAfter you’ve finished all your spoons place the tray into the freezer so the chocolate will completely cool.  Once it has hardened you can place the spoons into individual cellophane candy bags and tie them with some ribbon or bakers twine.

Chocolate Spoons and Hot Chocolate MugsIf you’re making these just for yourself as a yummy treat to enjoy with your hot chocolate then store them in a cool, dry place until you use them.   If you make some to give away then pair with a cute mug and even add in some hot chocolate and you’ll have one happy recipient!

Chocolate Spoons and Hot Chocolate Mugs Chocolate Spoons and Hot Chocolate Mugs


Caramel Apple Crisp

So the only downside of having a blog where you share yummy recipes is that sometimes you find yourself with a very large helping of warm, gooey apple crisp and ice cream at 9:30 in the morning.   There it was, just sitting on the table after I had taken the pictures and what was I supposed to do?  Not eat it?  Like that was going to happen….

So my husband and I grabbed some spoons and had ourselves a little morning treat.  It was delicious.

Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe

Making this treat takes just a few simple ingredients.  Apples (of course), brown sugar, flour, oats, butter, cinnamon, nutmeg, and caramel sauce.

First mix together all the ingredients except for the apples and the caramel sauce.  You need to mix it all together until the flour and brown sugar is completely blended in.  It will be slightly lumpy and sticky, and look sort of “wet.”

Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe Caramel Apple Crisp RecipeSlice and chop up your apples and put them into a greased 8 x 8 pan.  Spread the topping mixture on top of the apples.  It is sticky but try to spread it as evenly as possible.

Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe

Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes.  The top will be nice and crispy when it is done.

Caramel Apple Crisp RecipeLet it cool slightly and then drizzle caramel sauce all over the top.  Yum!!!

Caramel Apple Crisp RecipeThe apples will be soft and tender, the topping crispy and sweet, and a slight crunch from the oats.  Can’t get any better.  Serve warm with some light cream or ice cream and enjoy, whether it is 9:30 in the morning or night!

Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe

Download the PDF Recipe

Caramel Apple Crisp Recipe


Maple Apple Parfaits

If you ever find yourself in New England in the fall then I highly suggest you take advantage of one of the best fall activities:  Apple picking.  There are many beautiful farms and orchards where you can pick apples, go on hayrides, and you absolutely must eat several cider donuts.  They will change your life, trust me.

We recently headed out to Honey Pot Hill Orchards and spent the afternoon wandering in and around the trees, eating apples right off the branches, and enjoying the crisp autumn air.  Apple Picking and Maple Apple ParfaitsApple Picking and Maple Apple ParfaitsApple Picking and Maple Apple Parfaits 2Apple Picking and Maple Apple Parfaits

There is nothing quite like the taste of a fresh apple you just picked off the tree and we happily came home with a large bag of all different varieties.  Besides munching on them all day long we’ve also made a few yummy treats and this one is too easy, yummy, and simply perfect for fall.

Maple Apple Parfaits with Brown Sugar and Chocolate ToppingFor this treat you’ll need apples, maple syrup, water, cinnamon, vanilla pudding mix, milk, brown sugar, and chocolate shavings.

Peel, core, and chop up the apples into bite sized pieces.  In a medium saucepan heat the syrup and water to a boil.  Add the apples and a dash of cinnamon.  Boil until the apples are soft and tender.Maple Apple ParfaitsWhile the apples are boiling combine the pudding mix and milk in a medium bowl and then refrigerate until firm, about one hour.  Once the apples are fully cooked remove them from the sauce pan with a slotted spoon and put in the refrigerator to cool completely.

Maple Apple Parfaits with Brown Sugar and Chocolate ToppingWhen the pudding is ready and the apples are cooled divide the pudding equally among your small dessert dishes.  Top with the apples and then sprinkle with brown sugar and chocolate shavings.  Then indulge and enjoy.

Maple Apple Parfaits with Brown Sugar and Chocolate ToppingI adore desserts like this that are easy and simple to put together yet look fancy and are full of tasty flavor.  This is definitely a favorite fall treat!

Download the PDF RecipeMaple Apple Parfaits Recipe

Parmesan Romano Bread Dip

Down the street from our house is a restaurant called Not Your Average Joe’s and we often walk down and eat some of their yummy food.  It’s a local chain here in MA and I think it is in a couple other eastern states as well.   The best thing in the restaurant (in my opinion) is the warm bread and dipping sauce that they bring out before your meal.  I could eat it just by itself.   I knew the ingredients couldn’t be too complicated so I decided to try and replicate it at home.  It was pretty yummy too if I do say so myself.

Parmensan Romano Bread DipThe ingredients are pretty simple.  Parmesan cheese, Romano Cheese, crushed Red Pepper Flakes, Minced Garlic, and Olive Oil.

Parmensan Romano Bread DipIn a shallow plate or bowl put about a tablespoon of each cheese.  You’ll want the finely grated/powder, not the shredded cheese.

Parmensan Romano Bread DipAdd in a pinch of red pepper flakes.

Parmensan Romano Bread DipAnd mix well.  Next scoop about 1/4 tsp of minced garlic.

Parmensan Romano Bread DipStir it all together until well combined.  If you aren’t ready to serve it right away then you can put it in the fridge until time to eat.  But right before serving drizzle about 1/4 cup of olive oil over the cheese.

Parmensan Romano Bread DipNow if you want to follow my recipe exactly, then at this point you’ll want to realize that the plate you are using is much too small and spill about half of the olive oil on the counter.  Pause to clean it all up, wipe off the plate, and start again.  Just keepin’ it real people.

But after that…. serve it up with some warm bread and dig in!

Parmensan Romano Bread DipThe ingredient measurements are just guidelines.  If you like it a little cheesier throw in some more cheese.  A garlic glutton?  Go ahead with more garlic, no one will stop you.  This is a perfect party appetizer or yummy afternoon snack.  Super quick and easy to put together, you can’t go wrong!

Download the PDF Recipe

Parmensan Romano Bread Dip