Quick & Easy Chocolate Chip Cookies

I love baking cookies. While I am not a cook, I do like to dabble in baking. I also love chocolate chip cookies — seriously one of my top five favorite foods. I have several cookie recipes that I keep in rotation, and this is one of them!

I plan on making some later today while I enjoy a snow day off from teaching.

Betty Crocker Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Ingredients
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 package (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips (2 cups)

Steps
Heat oven to 375F
Mix sugars, butter, vanilla and egg in large bowl. Stir in flour, baking soda and salt (dough will be stiff). Stir in nuts and chocolate chips.
Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls about 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until light brown (centers will be soft). Cool slightly; remove from cookie sheet. Cool on wire rack.

Pour a big glass of milk and eat up! & don’t forget to share 😉

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Avocado fried egg toast

Today I have a super easy + delicious breakfast idea for you! I’m planning on making this x2 today after my 8-mile run.

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Preheat the frying pan. Get it medium-hot.

While your frying pan is heating up prep your toast, cut your avocado and mash it on your toast + add any other toppings you like.

Then, crack the egg into a small bowl, (it’ll be easier for transferring to your skillet) then slide the egg out of the bowl and into the frying pan. Put a lid on the frying pan — keep that heat in there!

Cook for about 4 minutes, until the egg white solidifies; the yolk will thicken slightly as it heats. Do not flip the egg.

When your egg is done, slide the cooked egg onto your prepared avocado toast. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and eat up!

I can’t wait to check in with you all on Monday about week one of marathon training!

30 minute homemade pizza

Every single Thursday night is pizza night in the Richardson household. This is one my favorite traditions Ryan and I started soon after we got married and it’s one I hope stays around forever. We both love pizza and whether it’s carried out from a national chain store (we love Pizza Hut!), made from scratch, or a baked frozen pizza, it makes for a simple, but delicious meal that I don’t have to think about.

So today I’m sharing a basic recipe for homemade pizza. Enjoy!

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5 Easy BBQ Recipes

With summer winding down, I thought now would be the perfect time to post some easy bbq recipes. For me, one of the best parts of summer is getting to grill out. Since KY is known for our barbecue, I thought I would share some of my favorites with you all.

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BBQ Shrimp Skewers. <– Perfect for your favorite bbq sauce!
Spicy BBQ Chicken Thighs.
Shredded Grilled Tilapia Tacos.
Neely’s Wet BBQ Ribs. STL-style ribs.

And last, but certainly not least, a recipe from my hometown. Owensboro Barbecued Mutton.

So grab your friends and family, a couple beers and a lot of food and fire up the grill. Enjoy the last few weeks of summer. I know I will!

Spinach and blueberry smoothie bowl

Lately, I’ve been trying to make more of an effort to get more greens into my diet. So I’ve been trying to add more spinach to smoothies (rather than just a small handful, I’ve been adding like close to cups). I’ve also been adding Suja’s green drinking vinegar to my smoothie for an extra kick + lots of good vitamins and nutrients.

But the best part of this is they don’t make my smoothie taste gross. So while I’m sneaking in these nutrients, my tastebuds have no idea! Eating healthy can be fun and delicious.

SPINACH AND BLUEBERRY SMOOTHIE BOWL

2 cups of spinach
A splash of Suja green drinking vinegar
1 large spoonful of plain Greek yogurt
Some frozen fruit and veggies (I just whatever is on hand, usually it’s frozen sweet potatoes, bananas, blueberries, oranges, literally whatever is in the freezer)
Small spoonful of Crazy Richard’s peanut butter
2 tablespoons of chia seeds

Then I top it with a variety of honey, nut butters, seeds or nuts, granola and blueberries ( a great source of antioxidants!) I’m seriously addicted. Some days I eat it for lunch and supper. The great thing about smoothie and smoothie bowls is that they are totally customizable to whatever you crave!

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It gives me fuel for the entire afternoon and doesn’t cause a sugar crash since I’m using all fresh and natural ingredients. I hope you get the chance to try it out. I hope you will love it as much as I do!

The best buttermilk pancakes

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INGREDIENTS
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons white sugarDomino Premium Pure Cane Sugar 2 LB
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon saltMorton Salt, 26 Oz
3 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup milk
3 eggs
1/3 cup butter, melted

DIRECTIONS
In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, beat together buttermilk, milk, eggs and melted butter. Keep the two mixtures separate until you are ready to cook.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. You can flick water across the surface and if it beads up and sizzles, it’s ready!
Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, using a wooden spoon or fork to blend. Stir until it’s just blended together.
Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/2 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot.

***I also add chocolate chips to my pancakes. I’m still a kid at heart.

But feel free to add in your own toppings!

In the words of Ron and Leslie from Parks and Rec:
Leslie: “Why would anybody ever eat anything besides breakfast food?”
Ron: “People are idiots, Leslie.”

10 simple summer snacks

Since it has been SO HOT lately, I thought I would share a quick roundup of some simple summer snacks. None of these recipes require the oven, some are healthy and some involve ice cream 🙂

Enjoy!

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1. Strawberry Frozen Yogurt
INGREDIENTS
• 4 cups frozen strawberries
• 3 tablespoons honey
• ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
• 1 tablespoon lime juice

Put all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. I use and LOVE my NutriBullet.

2. Fruit & Cheese Kabobs
3. Celery & Peanut Butter
4. Honey Vanilla Ice Cream
5. Real fruit popsicles.img_1072

6. Frozen grapes and cottage cheese (I stole this idea from Hungry Runner Girl)
7. Smoothies!
8. Fresh fruit
9. Sliced cucumber sandwiches
10. Caprese salad

Beginner’s Luck Green Smoothie

Recipe from 100 Days of Real Food.

The Beginner’s Luck Green Smoothie is a great beginner friendly green smoothie. It’s full of iron, potassium and vitamins galore— AND tastes like a tropical treat from all the island fruit.

Green Smoothie

INGREDIENTS
1 cup spinach fresh
1 cup water
half cup pineapple
half cup mango
1 banana peeled

INSTRUCTIONS
Place spinach and water in blender (I use a  Nutribullet). Puree until smooth.
Add fruit and blend again.

RECIPE NOTES
*Use at least one frozen fruit to make the smoothie cold or serve over ice.
NOT A FAN OF BANANAS? Feel free to substitute with another fruit, like extra mangos. You can even freeze the bananas first to reduce the flavor and also add some extra chill to your smoothie.

Drink up!

Rainbow cake recipe

It’s a new month! So many of my friends have birthdays this month, and every now and I then I like to bake something out of the norm for them.

So here is a fun cake recipe (a little from the Betty Crocker, a little from AllRecipes and some of my own trial and error) for a rainbow cake. Enjoy!

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INGREDIENTS

CAKE
2 boxes vanilla cake mix
2 cups water
1 cup vegetable oil
6 eggs
2 packages (2.7 oz each) classic gel food colors

BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
1 cup shortening
1 cup butter, softened
1 bag (2 lb) powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 to 4 tablespoons milk

STEPS
Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 3 (8-inch) round cake pans with cooking spray.
In large bowl, beat cake mix, water, oil and eggs with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, then on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Divide batter evenly among 6 small bowls, about 1 1/3 cups each.
Using food colors, tint batter in 1 bowl blue, 1 bowl red, 1 bowl green, 1 bowl yellow, 1 bowl orange (using red and yellow) and 1 bowl purple (using blue and red).
Refrigerate 3 colors of batter until ready to bake. Pour remaining 3 colors of batter into cake pans.
Bake 18 to 20 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center and begins to pull away from side of pan. Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pans to cooling racks; cool completely.

Wash cake pans. Bake and cool remaining 3 cake layers as directed.
In large bowl, beat shortening and butter with electric mixer on medium speed until light yellow. On low speed, gradually beat in powdered sugar. Beat in vanilla. Add milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until frosting is smooth. Beat on high speed until light and fluffy.
Trim rounded tops off cakes to level, if needed. On serving plate, place purple cake layer. Spread with frosting to within 1/4 inch of edge. Repeat with blue, green, yellow, orange and red cake layers. Spread light coat of frosting on top and side of cake to seal in crumbs, then frost with remaining frosting.