Homemade Cinnamon Applesauce

I’m not sure what made me think this. Maybe I was just super intimidated. But I’ve thought for years that making homemade applesauce was overwhelmingly hard. Who has time for that? Well, I do. And you do. It’s super super simple and WAY tastier than the jar version.

Here’s what my mom and dad and I did last week in a few minutes.

Peel and core 1 bag of Gala apples. Cut into chunks. Combine apples with about ½ cup of water and boil until the chunks are soft. Mash with a potato masher or leave chunks, depending on your preference. Add about 3 tsp of cinnamon or more if you like it spicy. I didn’t add any sugar, but some recipes call for ¼ cup.

If you don’t eat it all for dinner that night, it can be frozen in freezer bags and enjoyed well after apple season is gone. Serve warm or cold.

Creamy Caramel Apple Dip

appledipI’ve had different apple dips, but none that are quite like this. Some of the reviews mentioned that it was too sweet, so I tweaked it a bit and I think I’ve come up with a perfect way for a crowd to enjoy some Michigan apples!

 

2 (8 ounce) boxes cream cheese

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 or so of an 8 oz bag of toffee pieces

1/2 or so of a 15 oz bottle caramel ice cream topping

Several Granny Smith Apples

 

Cream together cream cheese, sugar and vanilla.

Spread mixture on a serving dish or plate

Cover the mixture with toffee bits

Drizzle (or cover) with the caramel sauce

Chill while you slice up the apples

 

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Three Ingredient Muffins

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Here’s a GREAT and EASY recipe to serve on the first day of school. (it’s healthy, too…but no one needs to tell the kids!) PLUS…it can be made with ANY cake mix you choose! This time I did something spicy!

 

1 spice cake mix

15 oz can of pumpkin

Half a bag of cinnamon chips

 

Mix three ingredients together (no eggs, no oil!) Scoop into muffin papers. Bake 15-20 minutes in 350 degree oven for moist and delicious pumpkin spice muffins!

Captain Bs Creamy Crock-Pot Chicken

 

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I have some great boater friends! We love to get together in large groups…because who doesn’t want to come boating, right? Well last time we were all together, my boating buddy Sandi hosted a party with a local band and my other boating buddy Bridgett brought this AMAZING dish! The real name is supposedly “Crack Chicken” but we decided to rename it “Captain Bs Creamy Crock-Pot Chicken”! Seriously make this today! It is great for a crowd, but it’s also phenomenal for families that have many different dinner times because of those crazy schedules! Enjoy!

  • 2-2½ pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts (I used thighs)
  • 1 oz packet dry ranch dressing mix
  • 8 oz cream cheese (cubed)
  • 4 slices of bacon (cut and fried…or fried and crumbled)
  • ½-1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 cups shredded Colby cheese
  • ¼ cup sliced green onions

Wash chicken and pat dry. Place chicken in crock-pot. Sprinkle with ranch dressing and top with cubed cream cheese. Cook on high 3 hours or low 5-6 hours or until chicken pulls apart easily. While cooking, fry up bacon. I like to cut it into small bites and fry rather than fry then crumble. With 2 forks, shred chicken in crock-pot. Stir in mayo, bacon, green onions and shredded cheese. Serve on buns, white rice, tortilla shells or my favorite…a baked potato!

 

Wake Up Piggies

piggies

Sometimes, like it or not, you just have to have breakfast on the go! These little gems make it seem alright. Make them the night before, then heat quickly before you head out. Love the fact that everyone could customize their favorite ingredients. Even make it veggie only, if preferred. (you just can’t call them “wake up piggies” if you do!)

Ingredients
3 eggs
1 TBS milk
1 can (8 oz) refrigerated crescent rolls
8 fully cooked breakfast sausage links
4 slices cheese of choice (I used colby-jack)
Salt and pepper to taste

Steps
1. Heat oven to 350°F. In small bowl, beat eggs. Reserve 1 tablespoon  for brushing on tops of rolls. Whisk in milk. Scramble eggs. Salt and pepper to taste.
2. Unroll dough onto work surface; separate into 8 triangles. Cut cheese slices in half; place 1 half on each triangle. Top each with spoonful of scrambled eggs and 1 sausage link. Loosely roll up triangles; place on un-greased cookie sheet.
3. Brush reserved beaten egg on top of each crescent.
4. Bake 15 to 18 minutes or until golden brown.

Veggie Bars

veggiebars2My sister makes this often for family gatherings. I’ve never made it before, but found myself craving it the other day! So I asked her for her recipe and thought I’d pass it along! I realize there are many versions of this out there, but hers is the BEST!

2 tubes refrigerated crescent roll sheet
2 (8oz) packages cream cheese (softened)
1 cup mayonnaise
1 package powdered Ranch dressing mix
1/2 cup chopped broccoli
1/2 cup chopped cauliflower
1/2 cup grated carrots
1 cup grated cheddar
(you can really use whatever veggies: red pepper, olives, etc.)

Lay both sheets of crescent rolls out on sheet cake pan side by side so it looks like a large pizza. Squish seam together. Bake according to package directions. Let cool.

Mix cream cheese, mayo and dressing mix together until smooth. Spread over cooled crust.

Chop veggies and sprinkle over cream mixture.

Top with shredded cheese, if desired.

Enjoy!

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Fresh Blueberry Cheesecake

blueberrycheesecakeWhen it’s blueberry season in Michigan, I just CAN’T get enough of them! And let’s face it, the season is WAY too short! Thankfully, this recipe can be made with fresh OR frozen, so stock up now! Enjoy!

CRUST

1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup ground walnuts or nuts of your choice
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine or 8 tablespoons, melted

Combine all ingredients and press into a sprayed 8 x 8 inch baking pan. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven 10 to 12 minutes. Remove and let cool.

FILLING

1 (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla

Combine ingredients and mix on high for 3 or 4 minutes. Pour over cooled crust. Refrigerate for 3 hours.

 

TOPPING

2 cups fresh blueberries (frozen)
1/2 cup sugar
1 TBS cornstarch
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup water
1 TBL lemon juice

Combine all topping ingredients except lemon juice and bring to boil on top of the stove stirring constantly. Cook for 2 minutes to thicken. Remove from heat, stir in lemon juice and let cool. Pour over cheesecake after it has been refrigerated for 3 hours.

Keep cheesecake chilled.