Root Beer Ribs


Every DAD wants ribs, right? But sometimes they’re intimidating. Not anymore. These ribs were one of the easiest things I’ve ever cooked! They literally took 2 steps and were perfect. Yep, the meat fell right off the bone. These will be PERFECT for Father’s Day! You don’t even need to fire up the grill unless you want to put them on for the last 5 minutes!


2-3 pounds beef ribs

1 20oz bottle of root beer

BBQ sauce (your favorite…or make the easy one below)



BBQ sauce


2 cups ketchup

1 cup water

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

5 tablespoons light brown sugar

5 tablespoons sugar

1 tsp ground black pepper

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp mustard

1 TBL lemon juice

1 TBL Worcestershire sauce


Bring ingredients to a boil then simmer for an hour stirring often.


Place ribs in baking dish. Pour root beer over ribs. Make sure ribs are marinating. Bake in covered dish at 325 for 2 hours. Remove from the oven and spread on BBQ sauce. Turn over and spread on the other side. Cover and put back in the oven for another hour.



Make-Your-Own Kabob Party

KabobsMy family loves to have “make your own kabobs” on the grill. That allows family members to customize their skewers. (for instance…I don’t care for mushrooms…and they seem to be ALWAYS on the pre-made Shish Kabobs!) This is a GREAT new recipe my sister found that we “customized”! Ha. Enjoy! (and do NOT skip the dipping sauce! It is AMAZING!!)


The kabobs in this picture are just marinated steak (a bottle of your favorite) and chicken marinated in honey and lime juice. I cut up enjoya peppers, and found some cute pearl onions, little potatoes, tomatoes and mushrooms. You could also do zucchini and other veggies or fruit. The recipe below explains how to grill and make your own marinade. We dipped the above kabobs in a mixture of Western dressing and sour cream. We also offered a cilantro-avocado salad dressing that was yummy!



Rosemary Chicken Kabobs

1 Tbs plus 1 tsp minced fresh rosemary (or dry)

2 tsp. dark brown sugar

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs

(about 12 small) trimmed of fat

Chunk fresh pineapple

Sliced onion

2 Tbs vegetable oil; more for the grill

1 cup orange marmalade

1/4 c. rice vinegar


In small bowl, mix 1 Tbs of the rosemary with the brown sugar, 2 tsp salt, and 1 tsp black pepper.  Put the chicken thighs in a shallow pan, drizzle with the oil and toss to coat.  Sprinkle the chicken evenly with the rosemary mixture.


In a small saucepan, warm the marmalade, the vinegar, and the remaining 1 tsp rosemary over low heat until just warm.  Set aside and keeps warm.


Prepare a hot charcoal fire or heat a gas grill with all burners on medium high for 10 minutes. Clean the hot grate with a wire brush and then lubricate it with an oil-soaked paper towel.  Put the chicken on oiled skewers alternating meat with pineapple and onion and zucchini then place on the grate and grill (uncovered over a charcoal fire, or covered on a gas grill) until one side has dark grill marks (5 – 6 minutes for large thighs or 4-5 minutes for medium and small thighs) Turn and do the same.

Transfer to a platter and let rest for 4 – 5 minutes.  Serve with individual bowls of warm marmalade dipping sauce.


Walking S’mores


Some people call these “Campfire Cones” but we do them on a grill so I call them Walking S’mores. I’m actually not a HUGE fan of S’mores because they’re SO messy and usually there’s SO much more marshmallow than chocolate, right? So when I saw these, I just HAD to try them. And I’m SO glad I did. They’re FANTASTIC! Less mess and very individual! Try this fun twist to the traditional S’more this Holiday weekend and EVERY weekend! They can be made on the grill, campfire, or even in the oven.


Waffle Ice Cream Cones

Topping Ideas: Marshmallows, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Kisses, Rolos, Butterscotch Chips, Chocolate Chips, Bananas, Raspberries, Strawberries, Pineapple, Chopped nuts, Rice Krispies, etc.

Fill a cone with desired amounts of marshmallow and toppings. (less than you think, probably) Wrap each cone with foil. Place over the campfire for about 5-7 minutes, on a heated grill for 6-8 minutes, or in the oven at 375 degrees for about 7-8 minutes until toppings are melted. Then just enjoy the taste of summer…a “Walking S’more” kinda! ha-ha.





Someone told me about “Brookies” awhile ago and I thought…how can I NOT try these?? One, because of the name. Two, because Brookies are both BROWNIES and COOKIES! What?? Well I started investigating, and all the recipes I saw were a little complex for my busy life, so I Brook-ified them! I must say, now they’re amazing AND easy!

If you can make cookies (and even if you can’t!) you can make these. Really easy and SO GOOD!  You can take these short cuts or do the two parts from scratch. Whichever you prefer. It will still be fantastic!


Bottom layer

1 box (19.5 oz) fudge brownie mix

Prepare batter as directed with eggs, oil, water, etc.



Top layer

1 roll refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough

Vanilla ice cream, if desired (and why wouldn’t it be?)


  1. Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark pan). Spray 13×9-inch pan with cooking spray. Make brownie mix as directed. Spread batter evenly in pan.
  2. Put cookie dough in a thin layer over brownie layer. (dough will spread during baking to cover top.)
  3. Bake 20 to 25 minutes until cookie topping is deep golden brown and toothpick comes out ALMOST clean. (goo is good!)
  4. Top with ice cream. (of course)



Mother’s Day Grilled Chicken Salad



This is my MOST FAVORITE meal. And when your kiddos help make it for Mother’s Day…it is even more fantastic. Hey…and the men get to grill!!


1/2 boneless chicken marinaded breast (per person)

1 1/4 c salad greens (per person)

1/4 c washed & sliced strawberries (per person)

poppy seed dressing

sliced almonds or chopped pecans



1/2 cup lime juice (lemon is okay if lime is unavailable)

2 tsp thyme

1/2 cup honey

2 TBS olive oil


Grill chicken until fully cooked, but not dried out. Meanwhile, put tossed green salad on individual plates (bagged salad works fine) and add sliced strawberries. Then, slice grilled chicken in strips and lay on salad. Top with dressing and sprinkle with almonds OR pecans.

Monster Cookie Makeover



We LOVE monster cookies and now we can have them without the guilt! And seriously after having these, we may never go back to the original. They’re YUMMY! They’re flourless, so you could make them totally gluten-free with a few tweaks.



1/4 cup melted butter

1/4 cup Baking Blend (either Truvia or Stevia)

1/4 cup Brown Sugar Blend (either Truvia or Stevia)

3/4 cup Natural Peanut Butter

1 tsp vanilla

2 eggs

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

2 1/4 cup Oatmeal

1/4 cup dark chocolate baking m&ms

1/4 cup chocolate chips


Pre-heat oven to 350

Melt butter and add to baking blend and brown sugar blend in large mixing bowl

Add peanut butter, vanilla and eggs and mix until blends are dissolved

Add salt, baking soda and oatmeal and stir until dough forms

Mix in candy and chocolate chips

Drop by the tablespoon on a cookie sheet

Bake 8-9 minutes or until edges get lightly browned

Cool 2 minutes or until set and transfer to cooling rack


Super Simple NOT-so-Sloppy Joes


21ef09cd-197e-4612-8fed-46585c5be50bYou may have made our Super Simple Sloppy Joes before, but there’s a way you can make them be “not-so-sloppy” Joes! This is SO GREAT!

The Inside:

4 pounds ground beef

1 tsp onion powder

1 (14oz) bottle of ketchup

1 cup water

1/2 cup celery (I skip)

1/4 cup lemon juice

2 TBS brown sugar

1 TBS salt

1 TBS Worcestershire sauce

2 tsp vinegar

1/2 tsp dry mustard (or regular).

The Outside:

2 (8 ounce) cans refrigerated crescent dinner rolls

1 egg, beaten

1/2 – 1 cup Panko bread crumbs

The Inside:

  1. Brown ground beef (this is where I sprinkle on a little onion powder) until all meat is cooked. Drain off excess fat.
  2. Add all other INSIDE ingredients. Simmer covered 30 minutes.

The Outside:

Heat oven to 375.

Take crescent rolls and unroll dough; separate into rectangles. (not triangles!) Press perforations to seal. Place a couple tablespoons of joes on the center of each square. Fold dough over, forming triangles. Press edges together to seal. With fork, poke small holes in tops for steam to escape.

Place on un-greased cookie sheet. Brush with egg then pat panko crumbs onto dough.

Bake 11 to 18 minutes or until golden brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet. Serve warm.