A Change-up For Lunchtime Fun

Do your kids get tired of eating sandwiches for lunch? Or do your kids not really like bread? Try this fun idea just to change things up a bit. Sometimes all we need is a little something out of the ordinary to cheer us up. Gather up your lunchmeat slices, cheese and condiments and let’s liven up lunch! 🙂

Lay a slice of lunchmeat on a cutting board. Depending on the size it is and the age of the child that will be eating it, you may want to cut the slice in half.

Spread your child’s favorite condiment on the meat. I went with mustard on one half and Ranch dressing on the other half.

Top this with a yummy slice of cheese. I used Swiss cheese and Smoked Cheddar for my example.

Starting at one side, roll the meat and cheese up together.

As you might notice, the right side of my meat slice was pretty thin and so it fell apart as I tried to roll it up. Solution – if your lunchmeat is sliced thin, use 2 pieces of meat together.

You can stop here and have “rollups” for lunch or you can take it a step further and cut the rollup in smaller pieces.

If your child is old enough to safely use toothpicks, stick one toothpick into each piece of sliced rollup to hold it together.

Add a slice of tomato or a few baby carrots or some fruit in the center of the circle and lunch is ready to be served! 🙂

As always, adapt this suggestion to fit your child’s age and your family’s situation. I hope changing up lunch helps to brighten your day! 🙂

Super Easy, Super Fast Snack!

Hello again! 🙂 Sorry I’ve not posted much for a few days! It’s been a rather crazy time here with a few small crisis thrown in lately, but I hope to be back to posting more next week.

So are you ready for a super easy, super fast snack idea? Here it is: tortilla chips and cheese! Bring out of bag of tortilla chips…

Open a jar of cheese dip…

Put some cheese dip in a little bowl and warm it for a few seconds in the microwave.

Put them together and chow down! Yum!!

Are you drooling yet? 😉

If that isn’t flavorful enough for your taste buds, add a little salsa too!

Voila! You’ll have a very yummy snack in a matter of just a couple of minutes! 🙂 Enjoy!

Save Those Bananas!

Do you ever have too many bananas and you don’t have time to use them before they become overripe? Don’t throw them away!

You can freeze bananas to use later and it’s SUPER simple to do! There are 2 ways (at least) to do it. Grab a small freezer bag and write on the outside that it contains a banana and write the date you are freezing it.

You can simply peel the banana, stick it in the freezer bag and put it in the freezer. Doesn’t get much easier than that, right? 🙂

Frozen bananas can be used to make things like banana bread or muffins but my favorite thing to use frozen bananas for is MILKSHAKES! So with that in mind, here is another way to freeze bananas so they are ready to go in the blender to make a milkshake. Lay a piece of wax paper or parchment paper on a cookie sheet, cut the banana into slices and lay them on the cookie sheet so they are not quite touching each other.

Pop the cookie sheet into the freezer and go about doing other things while the banana slices freeze. After the slices are frozen, pick up the edge of the wax paper and quickly peel it back to loosen the banana pieces.

Pop them into the freezer bags and back into the freezer.

Now you have banana slices ready to dump into the blender with your other yummy ingredients at a moment’s notice. 🙂 And you didn’t waste those bananas! 😉

Here is my favorite recipe for using frozen bananas in a milkshake. (Shhh! Don’t tell the kids it’s actually healthy!)

Note: you can use the whole frozen bananas in this recipe or to make your own version of a milkshake. Just break the banana into a few smaller chunks before adding it to the blender. Enjoy! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday #76 Ice Cream Cones

A summertime favorite (ok, year-found favorite!) of mine is an ice cream cone with chocolate and vanilla ice cream twisted together in it! OOOOoooo! Drool!

Yes, I know, it’s HUGE!! And that’s only a medium! Wow! But for this Taste Testing Tuesday, let’s think of OTHER things that could be eaten from an ice cream cone! Put on your thinking caps…here we go!!

#1.) Trail mix. Whatever your favorite trail mix ingredients are, I’m pretty sure they would taste great from an ice cream cone.

#2.) Vanilla yogurt and a cut-up banana. Yep, pretty tasty!

#3.) Miniature Marshmallows

#4.) Cereal. Have a bowl handy and you could even try adding some milk. 😉

#5.) Pudding! This is one of my favorite ideas! Chocolate or vanilla or any flavor of pudding is delicious in an ice cream cone. Sprinkles make it beautiful too. 😉

#6.) Crackers. Eat the snack inside the cone and then eat the cone!

#7.) Miniature cookies. These happen to be miniature Oreos but any mini cookies will work great.

#8.) Strawberries or other fresh fruit. This is another YUM! I’m imagining a little whip cream on top would be awesome!

So there are a few ideas to get you started! What can you think of that might work great in an ice cream cone? I’d love to hear your ideas and also hear about what you tried in your ice cream cone! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday #75 Blueberries

Warm weather brings on lots of yummy foods! One of my favorites is blueberries! In Ohio, it’s still a little early for fresh from the bush Ohio blueberries, but they are showing up in our grocery stores now from other places in the U.S. What do you like to do with blueberries? Here are a few suggestions you might like to try:

#1.) Just plain blueberries! I love them just like they are with nothing else added. 🙂

#2.) With milk and honey. Mmmm!

#3.) Blueberry muffins, of course! 😉

#4.) In a fruit salad

#5.) Blueberry cobbler. Oohh, yummy!

The list goes on and on! Blueberry smoothies, blueberry sauce, lemon and blueberry scones, blueberry pancakes or waffles, blueberry pie, blueberry jam, blueberries in salads, blueberries on ice cream…you get the idea! Blueberries are wonderful and so versatile! I hope you’ll taste test a new blueberry recipe today! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday #74 – Chocolate Dipped Oranges

Sorry to be posting this so late on our Taste Testing Tuesday, but it’s been a long day! Today we tried dipping orange pieces into melted chocolate or melted candy melts and sprinkling on some extra goodies. Don’t they look delicious?

You will need an orange, chocolate chips and/or candy melts and a few things to sprinkle onto the chocolate. Oh, and a piece of wax paper or foil or parchment paper.

You can use lots of things for the yummies you sprinkle on the chocolate. I used candy sprinkles, chopped nuts (cashews), mini M&M’s and mini chocolate chips. You could use coconut flakes, crushed graham crackers, crushed cereal, chopped peanuts, small pieces of freeze-dried fruit, etc.

Peel the orange and separate it into the sections.

Melt some chocolate chips in a microwave safe cup. Microwave for 30 seconds and try to stir the chocolate chips. Microwave for additional 15 second periods until the chocolate is all melted and smooth. Depending on what type of chocolate chips you use, you may also need to add a small amount of coconut oil or Crisco to get the chocolate melted and thin enough for dipping the oranges in.

Dip an orange section about halfway into the chocolate. You may want to use a spoon to help spread the chocolate all around the orange section.

Before the chocolate hardens, sprinkle some of the extra goodies onto the chocolate dipped part of the orange.

Lay each finished orange section on the wax paper and let the chocolate harden. Continue dipping and sprinkling each orange section.

I used white candy melts for half of my orange sections and that is very tasty too!

All that’s left to do is to eat and enjoy! 🙂 It probably works best to eat these right away. I had to leave home as soon as I finished making these, so I put my dipped orange pieces into the refrigerator. They tasted delicious when I returned home, but the white candy melt broke into pieces and fell off the orange section when I bit into it. It tasted the same, but it made more of a mess. 😉 For me, the mini M&M’s and mini chocolate chips were a bit too much sweetness at one time. I preferred the sprinkles and chopped nuts. I hope you will give these a try and see which kind you like best! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday #73 – Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Are you looking for a healthier way to make pizza? Maybe someone in your family needs to be gluten-free? Here’s a tasty way to make a delicious pizza while using cauliflower for the crust. If you haven’t tried cauliflower pizza crust yet, this may sound rather weird to you. But I think it’s really quite tasty so I hope you’ll give it a try!

You will need 2 Cups of riced cauliflower (can be fresh or you can use the frozen riced cauliflower), 2 Cups of grated mozzarella cheese and 2 eggs…plus your sauce and pizza toppings. I started out following Dr. Eric Berg’s recipe but I have made a couple of changes. Dr. Berg uses fresh riced cauliflower, but I mostly use the Green Giant frozen Riced Cauliflower because its a big time saver.

One of these bags is enough to make 1 pizza. If you use this kind of cauliflower, let it thaw and place it on paper towels to absorb any extra fluid that shows up in the thawing process.

Next, place the cauliflower, 2 Cups of cheese and 2 eggs into a large bowl. (We have used 1 Cup of mozzarella and 1 cup of parmesan cheese and that works fine too.)

I like to add in some Italian seasoning to give the crust a little extra flavor.

Mix together.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and put the dough mixture onto the baking sheet.

Spread the pizza dough into a thin layer.

Bake the pizza crust in a 450 degree oven for approximately 15 minutes. Do this step BEFORE adding your sauce and toppings. Bake until the crust has turned slightly brown. I’m sorry, but I forgot to take a picture at this step. Remove the pizza crust from the oven and add your favorite pizza sauce, toppings and a little more cheese if desired. Return to the oven and bake again until the cheese on top melts and the pizza is golden. The pizza in the following picture was topped with pizza sauce, mushrooms, cooked bacon and mozzarella cheese. It was delicious!

I hope you will give this cauliflower crust pizza a try! If you would like to watch a video by Dr. Berg, go to YouTube and look up “Healthy Pizza Recipe – How to Make a Keto-Friendly Pizza (Part 2) – Dr. Berg”. Happy eating!! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday #72 – Cheerios

Wow! Have you ever stopped to consider how many flavors of Cheerios cereal there are?! There are a LOT of them!! I’ll show you all the flavors I was able to discover and maybe you’ve even seen others. It could be a fun activity to buy a new flavor of Cheerios each time you buy groceries and do a taste test on all the flavors! Draw a chart and keep track of which kind each family member likes, or dislikes. 🙂 These are all the flavors I saw in our grocery store and in my search online.

#1.) Just plain Cheerios. I loved eating these when I was a kid and adding a little sugar to the top or some fresh strawberries or banana.

#2.) Multi Grain Cheerios

#3.) Strawberry Banana Cheerios

#4.) Honey Nut Cheerios Medley Crunch

#5.) Cheerios Oat Crunch Oats ‘N Honey

#6.) Cheerios Oat Crunch Cinnamon

#7.) Cheerios Oat Crunch Almond

#8.) Apple Cinnamon Cheerios

#9.) Very Berry Cheerios

#10.) Honey Nut Cheerios

#11.) Frosted Cheerios

#12.) Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheerios

#13.) Chocolate Cheerios

#14.) Blueberry Cheerios

#15.) Cinnamon Cheerios

#16.) Multi Grain Cheerios with Real Strawberries

#17.) Maple Cheerios

#18.) Chocolate Strawberry Cheerios

#19.) Team Cheerios Frosted Berry

#20.) Fruity Cheerios

#21.) Pumpkin Spice Cheerios

Whew!! So there are at least 21 flavors of Cheerios!! Do you know of any other flavor that I didn’t list here? How many of these flavors have you tried? There are quite a few we haven’t tried so we have some fun ahead of us! 🙂 Which one is your favorite flavor? If you buy 1 box of a different flavor every other week, you could take almost a year taste testing Cheerios! LOL Have fun! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday #71 – Super Quick Snack

Here we go again with Taste Testing Tuesday! I hope your Tuesday is going well! We’re getting close to the end of the school year and things are getting crazy busy, aren’t they? Today’s post can help you whip up a yummy snack in just a couple of minutes! Really? Yes, really! 🙂 This is a super quick snack and you’ll wonder why you never tried it before! (We had this for a snack occasionally when I was a kid back in the dark ages.) 😉

Yes, those are graham crackers. All you need for this snack is graham crackers and frosting! Homemade frosting is great but if you don’t have time to make frosting, the kind in a tub from the grocery store works perfectly.

All you do is break a graham cracker into the size you’d like them to be and spread frosting on one side of one piece.

Add a second piece of the same sized graham cracker to the frosting side, making a little sandwich. And that’s it! You have a snack for those hungry kiddos! Any flavor of frosting should work great!

Now, if you want to fancy things up and you have the time to do so, put the frosting on one side of a piece of graham cracker and then sprinkle on your favorite topping. Like…

Chocolate drink mix like Ovaltine…

Colored sprinkles…

Colored sugar…

Or chocolate sprinkles…just to name a few things you can use.

Even if you choose to go the “fancy way”, preparing this snack is sooo quick! What if you don’t have graham crackers on hand? This snack also works with other crackers. For example, Ritz crackers work fine too!

Feel free to experiment with whatever similar items you have on hand. I’m betting vanilla wafer cookies would be great too! Have a great Taste Testing Tuesday making super quick snacks! 🙂

Making Candy Pretzel Rods

Here’s a fun quick project you can do with the kids to welcome Spring! Or for some extra fun for Easter…pretzel rods dipped in candy and coated in sprinkles!

You will need a bag of Wilton Candy Melts (I used yellow but there are other colors available), some wax paper or parchment paper, pretzel rods, a microwave safe mug and some candy sprinkles.

Put some candy melts in a microwave safe mug or cup.

Melt in the microwave according to the package directions.

Dip the pretzel rod into the melted candy. Tipping the cup sideways some can help to get the candy farther up on the pretzel.

Let the excess candy drip back into the cup. While holding the dipped pretzel over a clean bowl, drop/pour the candy sprinkles over the melted candy part of the pretzel.

After you have added the sprinkles, lay the pretzel on a piece of wax paper or parchment paper. The candy will gradually harden again or you can place the dipped pretzels in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes.

And that’s all there is to it! 🙂 You can arrange the pretzels on a plate or in a cup or vase and share them with your family and friends. Sweet and salty mixed together is a great combination! Yummy!