Pineapple Sweet 'N Sour Meatballs

Saying my kids love these would be an understatement.  Saying they're time consuming would be a lie.  Not trying them yourself would truly be a shame.  That all said, these really come together quick OR you can throw them in the crock pot and have 'em ready when you get home.  I use frozen meatballs, but you could make your own as well.  Throwing the sauce together and simmer time take about the same time as boiling up the long-grain white rice I serve this over.  If you have a busy night coming - make these ahead, freeze and then cook up some minute rice while you're reheating.


Pineapple Sweet 'N Sour Meatballs

1 - 2lb Bag Frozen Pre-Cooked Homestyle Meatballs
1 Cup Water
1/2 Cup Cider Vinegar
1/2 Cup Ketchup
2 Tbsp Cornstarch
1 Cup Brown Sugar
2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
1 - 20 oz Can Pineapple Tidbits

In medium bowl, whisk together water, vinegar, ketchup, cornstarch, brown sugar, soy sauce, and juice from pineapple.  Pour sauce and pineapple pieces over frozen meatballs in large saucepan - bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered for 20+ minutes.  Serve over rice.


{healthy} Peanut Butter Banana Muffins

It seems like when you're pregnant, you either want to run from every plate of food OR anytime you hear someone making something or watch the Food Channel for just a little too long, you're left CRAVING it!  My friend was telling me how she was making these muffins the other morning - just the thought of peanut butter and banana in a muffin left me drooling!  So, I combined a few recipes and changed up a few things to make this healthy version this morning.  My kids gobbled 'em right up with some strawberry jam (and well, maybe I did too)!


Peanut Butter Banana Muffins

2 Eggs
1/2 Cup Honey
1/2 Cup Applesauce
2 Bananas, mashed
1 Tsp Vanilla
1/2 Cup Peanut Butter
1 Cup All-Purpose Flour
1/2 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 Cup Oatmeal
1 Tbsp Baking Powder
1/2 Tsp Baking Soda
1/4 Tsp Salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray muffins or use paper liners.  Combine eggs, honey, applesauce, bananas, vanilla, and peanut butter - mix well with mixer.  Add in dry ingredients, mixing until just combined (don't over do it - mix by hand if you think you might).  Spoon batter into muffin tin and bake for approximately 20 minutes, until toothpick comes out dry from center.  Let cool a few minutes before removing from pan.

Note: Using my large Pampered Chef scoop, yielded 17 muffins.  This recipe can easily be altered to meet what you have in your pantry.  Replace honey with white or brown sugar, applesauce can be replaced with oil, and the whole wheat flour can be replaced with all-purpose flour.


'Touch of Lemon' Cupcakes!

I'm a chocolate girl ALL.the.way.  Sometimes though, I don't feel like something so rich - I want something light and yummy!  Which leads me to this creation!  They are SO yummy and a nice refreshing hint of summer during these long days of winter.


Lemon Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

1 Yellow Cake Mix
1 Small Box Lemon Instant Pudding Mix
1 Cup Sour Cream
1 Cup Vegetable Oil
4 Eggs, beaten
1/2 Cup Milk
1 Tsp Vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all ingredients above thoroughly with mixer - approximately 3-5 minutes on medium speed, making sure to scrape down sides every few minutes.  Measure out into paper lined muffin tin.  Bake for 25-28 minutes until toothpick in center comes out clean.  Let cool before frosting.

1 - 8 oz Brick Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 Cup Butter, softened
1 Tsp Vanilla
3 Cups Powdered Sugar

Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla until smooth and fluffy.  Slowly add powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time.  Once all powdered sugar is added, beat on high for several minutes until smooth and fluffy.


S'mores Bars

Mmmmm...who doesn't love an ooey gooey s'more from the campfire on a beautiful summer night?!  But what happens when it's the dead of winter in the frozen tundra and you have a hankering?  S'mores bars to the rescue!!


S'mores Bars

8 Cups Golden Graham Cereal
5 Cups Miniature Marshmallows (we like things gooey, so we just used the entire bag)
1 1/2 Cups Chocolate Chips
1/4 Cup Light Corn Syrup
5 Tbsp Butter
1 Tsp Vanilla
1 Cup Miniature Marshmallows - if desired

In large bowl, measure cereal.  Butter/grease 9x13" pan.  In large microwaveable bowl, microwave marshmallows, chocolate chips, corn syrup and butter uncovered on high 2 to 3 1/2 minutes - stopping and stirring every minute until melted and smooth.  Then stir in vanilla.  Pour marshmallow mixture over cereal, quickly tossing until coated - stir in additional marshmallows if desired.  Press mixture evenly into pan (trick: take a sandwich baggie and put your hand in it, butter the side you're going to press with.  press cereal with baggie and "walah" smooth bars and no sticky fingers/spoon!).  Let stand for about a hour before cutting and serving (speed up the process by putting bars in refrigerator).