Pop Tarts

So not only was I offline because of Hurricane Sandy, my computer now has a virus and I need a new one. That’s why I have has such a lack of posts lately. Well, I’ve hijacked my sisters computer for the night so I can stay connected and I figured it was time to talk about these AMAZING new Pop Tart flavors.

I must say, I haven’t eaten a Pop Tart in about 10 years but that doesn’t mean I don’t remember how good they were. And now they have come out with holiday Pop Tarts… Drool! My favorite part is that you can eat them for any meal. They sound and look amazing and I felt like now was the time to share them with the world!

Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts


Gingerbread Pop Tarts

Sugar Cookie Pop Tarts


Marshmallow Hot Chocolate

Yum!

Coconut Banana Bread

This bread is so good and so easy! I made it as a dessert but it turned out to be a really great breakfast item. I spread a little Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Cream Cheese on top and it was fabulous! And the best part is that it’s healthy. YAY!

What you’ll need:

1 3/4 cup of all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
3 large ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup sweetened coconut, plus more for sprinkling
1/2 Tbsp olive or coconut oil (I used olive)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 egg whites
2 Tbsp skim milk, if needed
1/4 cup fat free Greek Yogurt
1/4 cup orange juice

What to do:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix the flour, baking powder and baking soda in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together the mashed bananas, brown sugar and vanilla. Add in the egg whites and mix together until the dough is smooth. Then, add the oil. Slowly, add in the flour and combine.

Next add the greek yogurt and orange juice. If the dough is too thick to work with, add the 2 tablespoons of milk (I didn’t have to with mine. It depends on how yours comes out). The thicker the dough, the denser the bread will be. It depends on your preference.

Then fold in the coconut to the batter. Pour the dough into a well greased 9×5 inch loaf pan. Sprinkle the extra coconut on top of the bread and bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean and the edges are golden brown.

OPTIONAL: If you want to be a little more health conscious, you can use whole wheat flour instead of white.

Recipe from: Ambitious Kitchen

Cake Batter Rice Krispy Bars

This was my first shot at homemade rice krispies and I’m so glad I tried it. It was the easiest recipe to follow and only took about 15 minutes. And they are so delicious. Everyone loves a rice krispy treat… It certainly brings me back to elementary school with that shiny blue wrapper!

The cake flavor adds a whole new element and makes them even better!

Ingredients:

3 Tbsp. of butter
1 (10 oz.) bag of marshmallows
1/3 – 2/3 cup yellow cake mix
6 cups rice krispy cereal
1 (1.75 oz) container of sprinkles

What to do:

In a large saucepan, over low heat, melt the butter and then add in the bag of marshmallows. Stir until they begin to melt. Add in the cake mix one spoonful at a time so it’s combined. Taste the mixture to get the desired cake flavor. Stir in the cereal so it is completely coated with the marshmallow mixture. Pour in half the sprinkle container and stir. Press into a baking dish (any size depending on how thick you wants your treats) and let sit for about 30 minutes before cutting into squares.

I love the color that the sprinkles add. It makes them more fun!

Pumpkin Spice Scones

I love fall baking. Anything with apple or pumpkin and I’m in! So I decided to make Pumpkin Spice Scones. They are a delicious treat and are surprisingly light (probably because they are vegan and gluten free!!). Serve ’em up with a little cool whip or frozen yogurt for a yummy healthy treat!

Ingredients:

2 cups whole spelt flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/3 cup coconut oil, plus more for brushing
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup agave nectar, plus more for brushing
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1\4 cup hot water
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

What to Do:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line a sheet with parchment paper or foil. In a medium bowl mix the flour, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice. Add in the coconut oil and mix with your hands until the dough is crumbly. Then, add the pumpkin puree, agave nectar and vanilla and mix until combined. The batter is going to be very thick and dry, so add in the hot water to make it easier to work with.

Use an ice cream scooper to form the dough into little balls and place them on the baking sheet, leaving 1 inch between them. Lightly brush the top with some of the coconut oil. Bake for 14 minutes or until scones are golden brown and lightly firm.

While the scone are baking, mix together the sugar and the pumpkin pie spice. Remove the scones from the oven and brush them with the agave nectar and sprinkle each one with the sugar/pumpkin mixture. Let them cool before eating (or eat them hot like I did!)

ENJOY!

Recipe From: The Healthy Diaries

Zinburger

Yesterday, I went to Zinburger (Clifton, NJ) with my company for lunch. I had been here before so I am going to base this review on the two times I have been here.

The food is AMAZING. The burgers are top quality. The only burger I would place above this one is White Manna in Hackensack, NJ (and if you have ever been there, you know that that’s a bold statement).

The truffle fries are the best side, in my opinion because they come with this great yogurt dipping sauce, although I was charged extra when I asked for more of the sauce, but the waitress told me ahead of time that there was an extra fee, so I’ll let it slide. The zucchini fries are great as well. As a matter of fact, all the different fries are good (they also have sweet potato and regular).

At lunch yesterday, I ordered the Chinese Chicken Salad. The chicken was marinated and juicy and it comes with fried crispy wontons. YUM! The dressing was an Asian Vinaigrette that had a sesame flavor to it. When I went the first time I had the Samburger (burger, bacon and American cheese – and I ordered it with avocado). It was absolutely delicious!

(Not my photo. Credit: Yelp)

They also serve an array of delicious milkshakes but I went next door to Cups frozen yogurt for dessert.

BUT… The best part of our lunch was when Caroline and Albert Manzo from the Real Housewives of New Jersey walked in. She looked fantastic by the way!

(Also not my photo. Credit: Zimbio)

Overall, great meal, reasonable prices and a nice friendly wait staff. I will definitely be returning in the near future!

Nutella Cream Cheese Brownies

I am a complete Nutella junkie, so when I found this recipe for Nutella Cream Cheese Brownies, I knew I had to try it. I made them for a group of friends and everyone loved them. The entire batch was gone within minutes. Follow this recipe for a magical treat.

Cream Cheese Topping
5 oz Philly Cream Cheese, room temperature
2 tbs softened butter
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 tbs flour
1/4 cup Nutella


Brownie Batter
3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup Hersey’s Special Dark Cocoa
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 stick of softened butter
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 large eggs


Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350° F and grease an 8×8 pan with cooking spray.

For the cream cheese frosting: cream together the butter, sugar and flour. Add the cream cheese and mix until smooth. Add the egg and beat until the batter is creamy. Add the Nutella and beat until the it is completely mixed in (I added a little more than 1/4 cup of the Nutella. Taste it and see if you want to add more).

For the brownie batter: In a medium bowl mix together flour, cocoa, salt and baking powder. In a small bowl cream the sugar and butter. Add the eggs in one at a time and beat well. Add the vanilla. Mix the egg, sugar and butter mixture in with the dry ingredients. Spread 3/4 of the batter into your pan. Then, dollop the cream cheese topping over the brownie batter. Dollop the rest of the brownie batter on top of that and swirl it around with a knife. Place in the oven and bake for 40 to 50 minutes.

When the brownies were done, I spread some Nutella over the top for a nice little topping!

Recipe From: Lovin’ From the Oven

Healthy Sugar Cookies

I know baking should consist of LOTS of butter, sugar, and cream but I made these healthy sugar cookies the other day and they came out great. The best part is, they are only 50 calories a cookie, so you can eat them without feeling guilty.

3/4 cup ww pastry flour (or white if you want)
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt (just under level)
1/4 tsp plus 1/8 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 tablespoons nondairy milk of choice
1/4 cup butter sub (I used Brummel and Brown)

Preheat oven to 325º F. Combine dry ingredients and mix well. In a separate bowl, melt the butter substitute, then stir in vanilla and milk. Pour dry into wet and mix again. Form balls or roll out (not too thin), then use a cookie cutter to make shapes. Cook in oven for 9 minutes. Just let them cool for 5 minutes before touching.

When they have cooled, you might want to put some icing on them to give them a little more oomph, but I ate my plain and they were great!

Recipe From: Chocolate Covered Katie