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Rainbow Iced Cake Jello Shots

Happy Halloween!

So today instead of sharing something that’s really festive and spooky for Halloween, I’m sharing rainbow jello shots 🙂

I mean how frickin cute are these?

And instead of doing something really fun and dressing up tonight we are staying in, watching scary movies and passing out candy… Like an old married couple…lol

I’ve been eyeing these on Pinterest for a while now and for my GNI I knew I had to make them!

These are the girliest jello shots ever!  They are made out of iced cake vodka, a little lemonade and with the food coloring you get an awesome ombre effect 🙂

It was a big hit and all the girls absolutely loved them!

And they tasted pretty good too 🙂

Everyone thought they must be super hard to make, but in reality they were pretty simple 🙂 They do take a little bit of time since they have to set in between each layer, but besides that are fairly quick!

Every second you spend on these will be totally worth it though because all your guests will love ’em! 🙂

Stars: 5

Level: Easy

Comments: These are fab! Boozy and tasty 🙂

Negatives: Time consuming but worth it!

Will I make these again? Yes but make sure you allow yourself plenty of time to make these

Rainbow Iced Cake Jello Shots

Makes 24 jello

Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cups lemonade (I used Minute Maid 15 cal lemonade)
  • 4 envelopes plain gelatin
  • 1 1/4 cups iced cake vodka
  • 4 tsp sweetened condensed milk
  • liquid food coloring

Directions:

In a small saucepan, pour the lemonade. Sprinkle the gelatin and let it sit for 2mins.

Over low heat, cook the gelatin lemonade, stirring constantly, for about 5 mins or until the gelatin is dissolved.

Turn the heat off and stir in the vodka and condensed milk.

Pour the mixture into 6 bowls (about 1/2 cup portions). Add different food coloring to each bowl to create the rainbow effect:

– 4 drops of liquid food coloring for each red, blue, green and yellow

– to create orange= 3 drops of red+1 drop of yellow

– to create violet= 2 drops of red+2 drops of blue

In very small plastic cups, spoon 1 tsp of the red gelatin mixture. Refrigerate until set, but still a little sticky when touched. It will take about 10 mins for the first layer to set, all the rest will take about 5. Repeat with the remaining colors. Refrigerate for at least 8 hrs or overnight.

Source: Tablespoon

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Banana Foster Stuffed French Toast

I’m a big fat cheater.

I know.

So this might seem very similar to my caramel apple french toast.

And well it pretty much is the same thing.

I have been completely obsessing over that french toast and have been experimenting with french toast ever since.

And since I ran out of apples, I figured why not use bananas!?

Makes perfect sense, right?

And it turned out pretty awesome 🙂

Only problem is that we’ve been having french toast everyday for the last week or so, and my love handles are starting to suffer.

And my scale is about to break.

And I pretty much have a heart attack every time I look at the said scale.

Like the number keeps going up and up,

and I keep wondering why?

Well between eating dozens of cupcakes, drinking a little more than usual, indulging in all things cheesy, and eating more french toast then it should be legal, I should just be happy that my jeans fit at all…

And Chris is not immune to it either.

He stepped on the scale today and was like “What the heck?” so starting tomorrow we’ll both go on a diet….

Let’s see how long that one lasts…sigh…

Tonight we indulged for the last time in some ahhmazing food! We went to our favorite tapas place which never disappoints 🙂 Always absolutely deelish and I can’t believe I haven’t blogged about it yet…Especially since I go there at least once a week…

But for now, just eat some french toast 🙂

By the way, I am totally obsessed with One More Night by Maroon 5.

Even though I hear it a thousand times a day, I can’t get enough of it! And I just found out that Maroon 5 will be here in March! OMG I have to be there! I know what I want for Christmas this year 😉

Stars: 5

Level: Moderate

Comments: Soo good! Gooey yumminess 🙂 If you love banana foster you’ll love these!

Negatives: Quite a few dishes afterwards but worth it!

Will I make these again? Probably

Banana Foster Stuffed French Toast

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 4 slices Texas Toast Bread
  • 2 oz cream cheese softened
  • 1 1/2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1 medium ripe banana, sliced
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk, skim
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • cinnamon

Directions:

For the Banana Foster: In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and brown sugar. Add the bananas and cook until soft, cover and turn the heat off while preparing everything else.

For the french toast batter: In a shallow dish whisk the eggs, milk, vanilla and some cinnamon.

For the bread: In a bowl, combine the cream cheese and powdered sugar. Spread on all the bread sliced. Divide the bananas among 2 slices of bread and top with the remaining 2.

Assemble: Heat a skillet to medium heat and melt some butter. Dip each bread sandwich into the batter and fry in the pan until golden brown on each side. Transfer to a plate, serve immediately with maple syrup.

Yummy Strawberry Sangria (Super Easy only 3 ingredients!)

So I’m not much of a wine drinker.

As much as I won’t to be, I am not.

It is not a taste I have yet acquired.

Yet last month I went to Bunko night with my friend Nicole.

And our hostess Danielle made a delicious strawberry sangria.

Just.To.Die.For

After having numberous glasses of the incredible sangria, I realized that I need this in my life – on a daily basis.

So for my girls night in I knew this was a drink that I must make.

And well everyone was completely in love with it!

Soo flipping tasty!!!

The best part is that it requires only 3 ingredients!

And no prep time 🙂

I used Arbor Mist Strawberry white zinfandel because it’s cheap and delicious.

I don’t know why, but the cheap wine always tastes better to me, I know – weird!

But that stuff is good 🙂

Anyways here’s the recipe(if you can even call it that lol!)

Stars: 4

Level: Super Easy

Comments: Easy and girl pleaser! Fruity and yummy

Negatives: The seeds from the sliced strawberries kind of bug me I would use whole strawberries to prevent that next time

Will I make this again? Yes! Perfect for girls night!

Yummy Strawberry Sangria

Makes a big pitcher (about 5 generous servings)

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 l Abror Mist Strawberry White Zinfandel
  • 1/3 cup lemonade (15 cal Minute Maid Lemonade worked great!)
  • 14 oz frozen strawberries (either whole or sliced), slightly defrosted

Directions: Mix all the ingredients in a pitcher. Store in the fridge until ready to serve 🙂

Chocolate Lover’s Cupcakes

Ohh my goodness…

I’ve been wanting to try these cupcakes for a while now and well I finally did.

And oh my, there is heaven!

So you already know that I absolutely adore anything (and everything) chocolate and these cupcakes totally sated all my chocolate cravings!

They are super rich, the texture is great, love the extra chocolate chips in the batter and the frosting….oh the frosting! Absolutely ahhmazing!!! Seriously!

It’s a cross between my chocolate cheesecake and chocolate mousse! And these are definitely two of my favorite things 🙂

Totally in love!

And you have to, I repeat HAVE to pile up the frosting nice and high because it is just to.die.for and I couldn’t get enough! 🙂

By the way, make sure you have a glass of milk nearby because they are insanely rich!

And to be able to appreciate these you have to be a complete chocolate maniac (which I obviously am) so all you vanilla fans these will be wayy too overpowering for you, but all of my fellow chocolate lovers out there you will totally rejoice and fall in love!

I made these for my girls night in and well everyone loved them.

My friend said it was like an overdose and a party in her mouth all at the same time lol 🙂

Stars: 5+++

Level:Moderate

Comments: Oh how much I loved these! These have turned out to be my favorite go-to super chocolate cupcakes and my husband requests them often 🙂

Negatives: These are not for everyone! You have to be a true chocolate lover because they are super super chocolaty!

Will I make these again? yes for sure!!

Chocolate Lovers Cupcakes

Serves: 12 cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/8 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened dark cocoa powder
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 3 tbsp heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 tbsp sour cream
  • 2/3 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions: Preheat oven to 350F.

In a bowl, whisk together the sugar and egg until smooth. Add the vanilla, milk and heavy cream and stir to combine.

Sift together the dry ingredients and slowly add them to the wet(whisking as you go). Once all the dry ingredients are incorporated, add the butter and sour cream. Stir just to combine and fold in the chocolate chips. Bake for 15-18 mins. Cool completely before frosting.

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:

  • 3 (8oz) packages cream cheese, cold
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips, melted and cooled
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract

Directions:

In a bowl of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the vanilla and beat to combine. With the mixer on low, add the powdered sugar (in 1/2 cup increments) and the cocoa powder. Add the melted chocolate and whisk to combine.

If the frosting is too thick, add 1 tsp milk at a time until the desired thickness is achieved.

If it’s too thin add a little more powdered sugar.

This makes a ton of frosting! I had about 1 cup left after frosting my cupcakes and I frosted them pretty generously. So you can half the recipe if you want! I stored the remaining frosting in a plastic bag in the fridge and are planning to use it for whoopie pies.

To assemble: Frost the cooled cupcakes and decorate with chocolate sprinkles and a piece of chocolate 🙂

Source: HowSweetEats

Salted Caramel Banana Cream Pie

So this took me longer then expected to post but here’s what I did with all the salted caramel I made 🙂

This is absolutely sinful!

It all starts with a simple (but yet all so good!) graham cracker crust, then we have a layer upon layer of yummy bananas, gooye caramel and indulgent vanilla pudding!

To. Die. For.

This recipe was supposed to be posted like 3 days ago, but between work, trying to spend time with Chris, hosting a girls night and trying to deal with a hangover I haven’t had time.

But in the next couple of days I have a whole bunch of new things to share! 🙂

Including awesome strawberry sangria, ahhmazing super chocolate cupcakes and some really cool cake jello shots 🙂

Stay tuned 🙂

Stars: 4.5

Level: Easy

Comments: Really yummy! Rich, creamy a nice twist on banana cream pie 🙂

Negatives: A little difficult to slice and serve.

Will I make this again? Yes!

Salted Caramel Banana Cream Pie

For crust:

  • 1 1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 stick butter, melted

Directions: Preheat oven to 350F. In a bowl combine the graham cracker crumbs and melted butter and stir until all the crumbs are wet and the mixture resembles wet sand. Spray a 9 in pie plate with cooking spray and spread the butter graham crumbs on it. Make sure to spread the crumbs all the way up the sides too! Bake in a preheated oven for 8mins then let cool completely.

Banana Layer:

  • 2 large ripe bananas, sliced

Caramel Layer:

  • 1 cup salted caramel sauce, recipe here

Vanilla Pudding Layer:

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 2 cups skim, milk (divided use)
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tbsp butter (salted ok!)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions: In a saucepan combine sugar, flour and 1 cup of milk. Over medium high heat, bring to a boil, stirring constantly and then cook for 2 mins longer or until the mixture has thickened.

In a bowl whisk the yolks with remaining cup of milk. Add half of the hot milk mixture and stir to combine. Transfer the mixture back to the saucepan and over medium high heat bring to  a boil (whisking constantly!). Let it cool for about 3 more mins or until it’s very thick.Turn the heat off and add the butter and vanilla. Let the butter melt completely then stir to combine.

To assemble: Top the cooled graham crust with 1/3 cup of caramel, then a layer of sliced bananas, then half of the vanilla pudding. Repeat the layers finishing with the last remaining 1/3 cup of caramel. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Serve with whipped cream and a caramel drizzle.

How to make Perfect Salted Caramel Sauce

Meet one of my nemesis.

Caramel.

Until 3 days ago, I was absolutely terrified of making caramel.

I’ve been trying to face some of my fears lately: baking the cheesecake, roasting a whole chicken, now making caramel and before you know it I will be making a pie crust!

Though that last fear, I’m not ready to face yet.

Anyhow, I got the guts to attempt caramel.

I have tried in the past and have failed miserably more than once, but this time it was war.

It was time for battle and I had all my soldiers prepared and armed.

I was not losing this time.

And I didn’t.

For 10 mins, I was over the stove staring at the saucepan of boiling water and sugar.

I was not letting it burn!

And although my phone was ringing, I was receiving a bunch of txts and emails and my favorite episode of Grey’s Anatomy was on, I didn’t care, I did not take my eyes of that caramel even for a second.

Once the sugar reached that much hoped for deep amber color, it got me pumped.

And then I added the cream and the sugar started to crystallize around my whisk.

I panicked.

I was deeply wounded and about to lose this war yet again, but I didn’t give up.

Not this time.

I whisked and whisked and whisked until slowly but surely the mixture turned into exactly what I wanted.

Then I dropped my last weapon, some butter…

and I knew I had succeeded.

It was perfection! Deep, rich, luscious perfect caramel.

Everything a caramel should be.

Except now that I have mastered it, I could make it everyday.

And well I sort of have.

By the way, I would definitely not recommend taking pictures while making caramel…

Especially if you are not great in multi-tasking to begin with…

Here’s how I do it!

heavy cream, sugar, corn syrup, sea salt, vanilla and just imagine that there’s also water and butter there (I am sort of an airhead sometimes)

Combine the sugar, water and corn syrup in a saucepan

and cook over medium low heat until the sugar dissolves

Now increase the heat to medium and cook until a deep amber color

Almost there! Once you reach the desired color, turn the heat off.

Add the heavy cream and stir stir stir!

Add the butter and let it melt 🙂

and there you have it perfect caramel sauce 🙂

Perfect Salted Caramel Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tbsp corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Directions:

In a saucepan, combine the sugar, water and corn syrup. Cook over medium low heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to medium and cook for about 8-10mins or until the sugar reaches deep amber color. Turn the heat off and whisk in the heavy cream, the key is keep whisking!!! If any sugar does crystallize, keep whisking! Once the heavy cream is incorporated, add the butter. Let it melt, then add the vanilla and sea salt. The caramel will get thicker as it cools! Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

Caramel Apple Stuffed French Toast

Ohh my gosh!

I have a tons of new material to blog about, but I couldn’t wait to share this with you!

This was inspired by a breakfast I had almost a week ago at the Omelet House (review coming soon!)

I enjoyed their french toast immensely and I knew I had to try and recreate it 🙂

Well it turned out even more magical than theirs!

Seriously!

You need this in your life!

And it’s like super easy to make 🙂

I expected it to be pretty delish but I was ahhmazed of really how wonderful the flavors were! The bread itself is very fluffy, with a beautiful golden crust and a little crunch. The filling is just divine! The apples are soo soft that they just melt in your mouth! You can smell and taste my favorite fall spices – cinnamon and nutmeg. And then the caramel just makes it completely sinful and over the top.

Ohh my gosh.

I’ll be perfectly happy with eating this every day for the rest of my life 🙂

Stars: 5

Level: Moderate

Comments: I love this! The apples get tender and the melted brown sugar tastes just like caramel 🙂

Negatives: None

Will I make this again? Yes definitely!

Caramel Apple Stuffed French Toast

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 apple, peeled, cored and sliced
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • a small pinch (about 1/16tsp) nutmeg
  • 2 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 4 slices texas toast
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 milk (i used skim)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • cinnamon, to taste
  • some more butter

Directions:

In a saucepan over medium high heat, melt the butter. Add the brown sugar and apples and cook until the apples are soft. Cover and turn the heat off.

In a small bowl, combine cream cheese and powdered sugar. Spread the mixture among the texas toast.

Distribute the apples among 2 slices of french toast and then top with the remaining 2 slices to create sandwiches.

In a shallow dish, combine the eggs, milk, vanilla and some cinnamon.

In a skillet over medium heat, melt a little butter.

Working fast, take 1 french toast sandwich and dip one side of it in the egg mixture. Carefully flip over and submerge the other side. Quickly transfer it to the hot skillet and cook until golden brown. Carefully flip over and cook for a minute longer. Repeat with the remaining texas toast sandwich.

Serve immediately with maple syrup.

BBQ Chicken Stuffed Baked Potatoes

This is absolutely divine!

So simple, yet soo good!

I had some leftover chicken from my roast and some potatoes that needed to be used up, so why not combine the two?

Well it turned out pretty awesome and Chris totally loved it!

And the ingredients are very simple, just some baking(russet) potatoes, some leftover chicken, bbq sauce and toppings of your choice!

My favorites are shredded cheddar, sour cream and chopped green onions(or chives) to make ’em all fancy 🙂

Btw the weather here is absolutely perfect right now!

Like I totally wanna go have a picnic in the park, or go hiking.

Picnic, now that’s definitely doable, but me hiking?

My husband would totally laugh at the idea and ask “Are you gonna go hiking in your high heels?”

Which I guess is a good question, knowing the fact that I didn’t own a pair of running shoes before I met him, and going hiking in heels sounds like something I might actually do….  but anyways hopefully the weather will keep up for at least a few more days 🙂

Stars: 5

Level: Easy

Comments: We love anything BBQ so we adored these!

Negatives: None very easy recipe!

Will I make these again? Yes!

So here’s how to make these awesome baked potatoes!

BBQ Chicken Stuffed Baked Potatoes

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 large russet potatoes
  • 1 cup shredded chicken
  • 1/2 cup BBQ sauce
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper
  • toppings such as shredded cheddar, sour cream, green onions

Directions: Preheat oven to 350F.

Wash and scrub the potatoes clean, then dry with a paper towel. Pierce the potatoes with a fork a few times, then transfer to a baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven for 65 – 75mins or until tender when pierced with a fork.

Let the potatoes cool a bit while preparing the chicken.

Combine the chicken and BBQ sauce in a saucepan and cook over medium low heat until heated through.

Cut the potatoes in half (lengthwise), salt and pepper the inside. Put 1tbsp of butter in each potato, then spoon in plenty of the BBQ chicken mixture. Top with cheddar, sour cream and green onions.

Chocoholics Cheesecake

OMG!

This cheesecake is ahhmazing!

So I have to admit, I’m terrified of baking cheesecakes.

Pretty much as terrified as making pie crust!

I have made plenty of no bake cheesecakes but never a real cheesecake.

So it was time to face my fears and get it done!

The whole time I was making it, I was praying to the cheesecake gods that my cheesecake doesn’t crack.

And well, it didn’t!!!

After a night in the fridge, I was prepared to see a sad, cracked cheesecake, but was pleasantly surprised 🙂

And guess what – no water bath!!!

It’s all starts with an oreo crust, the cheesecake is very creamy, with a hint of coffee and intense chocolate flavor. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream, caramel(or chocolate) drizzle and some chocolate chips and you have one super indulgent and delicious dessert 🙂

Stars: 5+++

Level: Moderate

Comments: I love cheesecake and chocolate so this was perfect. I was sweating it that my cheesecake might crack but as you can see no ugly cracks here whooho!

Negatives: A little time consuming the worst part was waiting for it overnight!

Will I make this again? Yes that’s a no brainer 🙂

Here’s how to make it:

Chocoholics Cheesecake

Makes 1 (12in) cheesecake

For the crust:

  • 30 oreo cookies, finely crushed
  • 4 tbsp butter, melted

Directions: In a bowl combine the crushed oreos and melted butter and mix with a spatula until it looks like a wet sand. Spread the mixture in a 12 in (cooking spray sprayed) springform pan, making sure to go up the sides. Set aside while preparing the cheesecake.

Cheesecake:

  • 3 (8oz) packages cream cheese, room temp
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp instant espresso
  • 4 large eggs, room temp

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325F.

In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Add the sour cream, sugar, salt and vanilla and beat until combined. Add the melted chocolate, cocoa powder and instant espresso and beat until incorporated. One by one, add in the eggs and mix just until incorporated. Pour in the prepared oreo crust.

Bake for 50 mins or until the cheesecake is firm but the middle looks wet and a little wobbly.

Turn the oven off, open the oven door and let the cheesecake cool in the oven for 2 hrs.

Cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight.

Corn and Quinoa Chowder

Yep, I am totally obsessed with soup.

And I especially love a good corn chowder.

In this version though I am using quinoa!

You might be wondering why? It’s not an ingredient I would normally use…

but every now and then I like to experiment with different ingredients

and since I had a package of quinoa in my pantry that was just waiting to be used, I figured why not add it to my chowder!?

Quinoa is a seed that is a great source of protein, fiber, calcium and iron. It’s easy to digest, vegan and gluten-free! It doesn’t really have a flavor, it absorbs whatever you cook it in and it’s also very easy to cook! If you can cook rice, you can cook quinoa! I would definitely have to start using it more!

So this chowder is super easy, one pot meal, that requires very little prep work and it’s also a crowd pleaser!

My friend was over for dinner and she absolutely loved it! And even Chris (the biggest carnivore in the world)  loved it, even though there was no meat in it 🙂

Stars: 5

Level: Easy

Comments: Delicious soup! Thick, slightly sweet and the quinoa is great!

Negatives: None at all

Will I make this again? Yes for sure! Very quick and easy meal

Here’s how to make it:

Corn and Quinoa Chowder

Serves: 6

Ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup celery, finely diced
  • 1 orange (or red) pepper, chopped
  • 2 (15.4oz) cans sweet corn, rinsed
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups chicken broth (or vegetable)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 cups milk, fat-free ok
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • chopped green onions and extra shredded cheese to serve

Directions:

In a dutch oven over medium high heat, saute onion until translucent (about 3-5mins). Add the garlic, pepper, celery, corn and quinoa and cook (stirring occasionally) for 2 mins.

Add the broth and water and bring to a boil. Cover and turn the heat down to low and cook for 20 mins.

In a saucepan, melt the butter. Add the flour and cook (whisking frequently) for 1 min. Slowly, add the milk, constantly whisking and breaking up any lumps. Add the milk mixture to the soup and cook for 10 mins or until everything is heated through. Turn the heat off, add the cheese and garlic powder – let the cheese melt. Taste and adjust seasoning accordingly. Serve immediately with some green onions and extra cheese.

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