Archive | EAT

DINNER TONIGHT: HEALTHY TURKEY EMPANADAS

Empanadas are tasty hand pies common all over Latin America. Today, I’m excited to be teaming up with Foster Farms® to share a version you’ll want to make ASAP for a few really good reasons 1. It only requires a handful of ingredients 2. We’ve used organic ground turkey for a healthy twist and 3. They’re easy and fun to eat on game or movie night, or take with you for a picnic or snow day!

However, there are no excuses necessary for throwing these cutie (hand) pies together. Take a peek at the recipe and step-by-step pics below!

Making and rolling dough is usually one of my least favorite tasks in the kitchen, but this recipe comes together in under 10 minutes and is so easy to work with!

FOR THE DOUGH, YOU’LL NEED:

  1. 1 cup water
  2. 3/4 cup shortening
  3. 2-3/4 cups flour (plus more for rolling)
  4. 2 teaspoons kosher salt

HERE’S HOW:

  1. Add water and shortening to a saucepan and heat over medium until shortening has melted (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, whisk flour and salt together. Using a measuring cup, make a well in the center of flour mix.

Slowly stir shortening and water into the mixing bowl until dough forms. Knead mixture with your hands until dough is well combined and has a smooth texture (about 1 to 2 minutes). Wrap dough in plastic wrap and let chill for 2 hours.

While the dough finishes chilling, it’s time to make the filling. And apparently rhyme too! Ha!

FOR THE FILLING, YOU’LL NEED:

  1. 1 large bell pepper (or 1-1/2 small peppers), finely chopped
  2. 1 large sweet onion (or 1-1/2 small ones), finely chopped
  3. 1/3 cup coconut oil (or olive oil)
  4. 1 lb. Foster Farms® Organic Ground Turkey
  5. 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  6. 2 teaspoons paprika
  7. salt and pepper to taste

HERE’S HOW:

  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add peppers and onions to pan and sauté until golden brown. Add spices and cook for an additional couple minutes or until fragrant. Transfer to a medium sized mixing bowl. Add meat to pan, season with salt and pepper and cook until browned. Add to mixing bowl and let cool while doing the next step.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper (optional). Divide dough into 12, 2-inch balls (see pic below). On a lightly floured surface, roll dough balls into 5-inch circles.

Scoop 1/4 cup of filling into the center of each rolled dough. Fold in half and press edges together with your fingers and then a fork. Place on prepared baking sheet and bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes.

My little kitchen helper and taste tester!

Once you get comfortable making the dough, the filling combinations are endless! Poppy wasn’t a fan of the bell peppers so next time I might swap them out for a veggie she enjoys or allow all the kids to make their own fillings. With so many people and varying taste buds in our family, I love a recipes that can be customized!

Which is also one of the things I appreciate about Foster Farms®. We’ve been cooking up and serving their products in our kitchen for a long time and love that they have such a great selection of organic meats. The Foster Farms Organic Ground Turkey we used is USDA Certified Organic with No Antibiotics Ever!

Makes it easy to switch up our favorite recipes or use ingredients that we already have on hand while also knowing we’re feeding our family the best!

XO, Rae

P.S. — A big thank you to Foster Farms® for inspiring this post and to you guys for supporting the brands that make blogging possible! As you guys already know, I don’t do many sponsored posts so you know that when I do, it’s because it’s with a brand I already know, trust and love!

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(One more pic of Poppy helping grab all of our fresh ingredients at Safeway ;)

 

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Foster Farms®.

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UNICORN HOT COCOA + A KID CHARCUTERIE PLATTER

With the majority of winter and lots of time cooped up at home still ahead of us, we’re staying cozy and having fun while whipping up some unicorn and narwhal hot cocoa. Watch the video below to see how we make it!

Did you watch long enough to see the “cutie” platter at the end? It’s my favorite way to feed a crowd without actually having to cook or clean!

Most of the fixings got eaten before I could snap a picture for this post, so I thought I would try and put one together today and share on Instagram Stories. Come say “HI!” if you get a chance! I’ll also add it to an “eat” collection below my bio for safe keeping. For now, here’s the hot cocoa recipe…

UNICORN or NARWHAL HOT COCOA

You’ll Need:

  • whole milk (or milk of your choice)
  • powdered white mocha  powder and/or white mocha syrup (you can use both or just one)
  • 1/4 teaspoon all natural powdered food coloring (I like this kind!), or a drop of liquid food coloring
  • toppings of choice: whip cream, sprinkles, marshmallows, paper straws, etc.

Here’s How:

Over the stove or in the microwave, heat your milk. Stir in powder mix and/or syrup. Add food coloring. Once the milk has cooled enough for little ones to drink, add your toppings and enjoy!

*If you’re having the kids help you, make sure the milk isn’t scolding… spills tend to happen when kids are involved and I would hate for someone to get a burn!

Don’t forget the marshmallows and whip… Even if just for entertainment value ;)

Extra props to Johan for figuring out how to piece together the video… it was not an easy one!

Are there any videos you’d like to see in the future?

XO, Rae

PS — See you over on Instagram later today!

PPS — More unicorn fun –> HERE and HERE.

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JANUARY DINNERS + A MEAL PLAN PRINTABLE

Coming out of Holiday hibernation to wish you guys a very happy, happy first day of 2018 and share some menu ideas for January! Before we get into the recipe links, I have a MOM-HACK for you that might sound like an ad but I promise isn’t… One thing we’re doing this year to simplify our to do lists and meal planning is to use Click List from Fred Meyer. I used it to avoid the crowds while shopping for Thanksgiving and Christmas this year and it was a dream come true. Just shop, purchase and schedule your grocery pickup time online. Then all you have to do is stop by and pick them up without even getting out of the car!  So good and easy it feels a little bit like cheating. If you don’t have a Fred Meyer store near you I know Walmart, Amazon and other grocery stores offer it too. Hopefully it’s something you can try and love… or maybe you already do this and I’m late to the party!?

Now for some yummy recipes to try this month.

12 DINNERS TO MAKE IN JANUARY

EASY

MAKE AHEAD OR BAKED

30-45 MINS

BREAKFAST, LUNCH + SNACK IDEAS

As you can see, I didn’t venture much outside of my trusted recipe web sites but would love some suggestions if you have any faves!?

xo, Rae

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HEALTHY EATS: MY ALMOST FAMOUS ARUGULA + PESTO SALAD

Christmas is only a couple (and a half) weeks away (how can that be!?) and I’m having the hardest time thinking about or doing anything that doesn’t involve holiday prep or family time. Unfortunately all other tasks have taken a backseat, including any kind of self-care. Let’s just say my abs, nails, hair and eyebrows could use some serious TLC. A little extra sleep would probably be a good thing too. I’m guessing you guys can relate!?

And even though I helped Poppy inhale a small bag of fish crackers on Thursday while we meandered through Target, I’ve made sure to feed my body healthy stuff too and this salad makes it super easy! It’s also been my go-to side dish for get-togethers lately and after so many requests for a recipe I figured it was time to share something more official than a verbal list of salad fixings.

Just looking at that pic makes me feel healthier, LOL, but here’s the recipe so you can try it at home. Assuming you like arugula and pesto, it will not disappoint!

YOU’LL NEED:

  • 5 oz baby arugula, chopped (don’t ask me why, but it’s not the same without chopping!)
  • 2 cups quinoa, cooked
  • 8 oz grape/cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts, shaved almonds, sunflower or pumpkin seeds
  • 4 tablespoons pesto
  • parmesan to top, optional
  • bite sized salami or chicken, optional
  • salt and pepper to taste

HERE’S HOW:

Toss together arugula (or sub with spring mix), quinoa, tomatoes, nut or seed of choice and pesto. Add olive oil to thin pesto if you like so it coats more like a dressing. Top with parm and choice of meat (optional) and serve!

It’s so simple, but so full of flavor! I make it at least a few times a week for lunch, dinner and even breakfast with a fried egg on top.

Another thing I’ve been good about (which is a pretty short list!) is using my detox mama roller! The combination of grapefruit and cypress boosts your immune system and energy while decreasing toxins, inflammation, anxiety and appetite and it smells delish!

With that in mind, MONDAY is the last chance to shop the holiday pop-up! Everything will ship on Tuesday and should take 2-3 days to arrive.

Thanks for all the love and feedback on wednesday’s video… If you missed it, go take a peek HERE.

Happy weekend you guys!

xo, Rae

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DECEMBER MEALS + A SUGAR COOKIE RECIPE YOU’LL LOVE

Cookie baking, Holiday movie watching, hall decking, and gift wrapping, sign me up for it all. But with December 1 comes a reality check. Christmas will be here before I know it and there’s so much I want to get done between now and the 24th. Assuming you guys are in the same boat, I did my best to curate dishes and recipes that are mostly easy to make and perfect for leftovers! But first a sugar cookie recipe that does not disappoint! Seriously, I don’t eat many desserts that don’t involve chocolate and couldn’t stop snacking on these.

SUGAR COOKIE + ICING RECIPE

YOU’LL NEED (for cookies):

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • cookie cutters (I used this one)

YOU’LL NEED (for icing):

  • 2 cups shortening
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 8 cups powdered sugar (aka icing sugar)
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream, less or more for desired thickness/texture
  • sprinkles
  • food coloring (the all-natural one we used)

TO MAKE THE COOKIES:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together butter and sugar. Then add egg and vanilla and cream together.
  2. Whisk the baking powder and flour together. Gradually add dry ingredients to sugar mixture, mixing in-between until well combined.
  3. Knead dough by hand for a minute then immediately roll smaller batches, on a floured surface, to about 1/4 inch thickness. Cut out with cookie cutters.
  4. Place on cookie sheet and bake for 8 minutes. Remove from oven before they brown. Move to wire rack or platter and let cool completely before icing.

TO MAKE THE ICING:

  • In a large bowl, beat shortening and vanilla. Add powdered sugar in small amount (I added 1/2 cup at a time) and combine.
  • Add cream gradually and beat until desired thickness and consistency.
  • Divide icing into bowls and add food coloring to each as desired!
  • Spread onto cooled cookies and add sprinkles!

Here are a few other dinners on our menu plan this December!

12 DINNERS TO MAKE IN NOVEMBER

EASY

MAKE AHEAD OR BAKED

30-45 MINS

BREAKFAST, LUNCH + SNACK IDEAS

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NOVEMBER DINNERS

Seems like we’ve skipped the second half of fall and went straight to winter, and not just because of the bins of Christmas decorations sitting in our family room. It actually snowed over the weekend, which is not normal but does make turning on the oven that much more appealing! This morning we whipped up a batch of breakfast cookies and plan on making baked pasta tonight.

Here are a few other dinners on our menu plan this November!

12 DINNERS TO MAKE IN NOVEMBER

EASY

  • nachos (try this recipe!)
  • panini sandwiches
  • chicken fried rice (use a store-bought rotisserie chicken to save time!)
  • flatbread, french bread, or pita pizzas (just to mix things up a bit :)

MAKE AHEAD OR BAKED

30-45 MINS

Quick question for you guys… do you prefer the weekly meal plans with lunch, breakfast and snack ideas too (like this post), or a list of dinners for the month (like above)!?

Happy Hump Day!

xo, Rae

9

BUTTERNUT SQUASH PASTA CARBONARA + 12 OCTOBER DINNERS

I may not be 100% ready to say goodbye to the summer heat and sunshine, but am fully ready to embrace all the yummy fall flavors and scents. Last night I made butternut squash pasta carbonara, a family favorite (6 out of 7 of us anyway!) this time of year, and wanted to share the recipe with you along with a list of other dinner ideas. My hope is that the list below helps inspire and make October meal planning a cinch!

Warm and cozy fall comfort foods, here we come!

PASTA CARBONARA WITH BUTTERNUT SQUASH SAUCE, takes 45 mins + serves 4-6

You’ll Need:

  • 3 cups cubed butternut squash, about 1 small squash
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons dried or fresh sage, optional
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt + pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg (or more to taste)
  • 1-14oz can chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream (1/2 + 1/2 or whole milk)
  • 8 (or more slices) of bacon, cooked and roughly chopped
  • 16oz. pasta of choice (linguini pictured)

Here’s How:

  1. Chop squash (here’s a handy video), onion and garlic and cook noodles according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup pasta water before draining and set aside (for sauce if needed). Cook bacon as desired and set aside.
  2. To make the sauce, heat oil in a large stockpot and add squash, onion and garlic. Add sage (optional), salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste. Sauté for 10 minutes. Add chicken broth and bring to a light boil for another 10 minutes. Stir in cream and remove from heat. Use an emersion blender (one of my favorite kitchen tools– so handy for soups and sauces and easy to clean!!!) to cream sauce or use a regular blender (just be sure to only fill 1/2 way when working with hot liquids so may need to blend in batches). If needed, add more chicken stock or pasta water to thin sauce.
  3. In the large stockpot, toss together noodles and sauce. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Dish onto plates and top with bacon and parmesan.

So goooooood!

Anytime red sauce or pesto are involved my pasta of choice is usually penne so it’s easier and less messy for the kids to eat, but this butternut sauce is the perfect color and consistency for slurping, twirling and finger eating!

A list of 12 dinners that will be on rotation at our house this October below…

12 DINNERS TO MAKE IN OCTOBER

EASY

MAKE AHEAD 

30-45 MINS

(*perfect for halloween!)

What’s your favorite fall dinner?

Feeling so much better today…. thanks for all the well wishes! You guys are the best!

xo, Rae

 

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2

LUNCHBOX BITES: CHOCOLATE CHIP PUMPKIN PANCAKES FOR 2ND BREAKFAST

“Don’t forget your lunch!” season is in full swing around here. On top of that it seems the further we get into the school year the more rushed our mornings are. To make things easier I’ve been trying to whip up simple lunches that the kids are too excited about to not grab on their way out the door.

Leftovers are the first thing to pop in my head when I think about easy lunches, but they’re often not my kids’ favorite. However, last week I layered our pumpkin chocolate chip pancakes from breakfast (recipe below if you missed it on Instagram stories!) with cream cheese to make little sandwiches and they loved it… 2nd breakfast for lunch? Yes please!

Peep the pumpkin pancake recipe below and another little morning tip for you at the bottom of this post!

CHOCOLATE CHIP PUMPKIN PANCAKES

You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup whole or other milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup pure pumpkin
  • cinnamon, all spice and/or pumpkin pie spice (whatever you have on hand!), to taste!
  • chocolate chips as desired
  • whip cream, syrup, or cream cheese to top!

Here’s How:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine and mix all ingredients. (Side note: sometimes I’ll save the chocolate chips on the side  and sprinkle over the top of each pancake as I pour the batter)
  2. Spray or grease griddle and heat to med-low. Using a 1/4 measuring cup, pour batter and cook until sides of pancakes start to look cooked (the middle will still look gooey) and then flip. Cook other side until browned and middle is cooked through. If pancakes start to burn but the middle is still gooey, lower the heat on your griddle.
  3. Serve warm. Save leftovers for lunch or snack!

(bento lunch container, lunch bag, bento eye picks and alphabet picks)

Yesterday morning as we waited in the drop-off line at school I asked the kids, “What’s one or more things we were awesome at this morning and whats one thing we can be better about tomorrow?”

Their responses were so great and instead of feeling like, ugh, moms not happy with us this morning as they hopped out of the car they were laughing and happy and I think we were all excited to be able to try again the next morning. We’ll see if any of it sticks but I’m hopeful!

Do you guys have any tips for slowing down in the morning?

I’ll be sharing a couple more lunch ideas, that my kids love, that use leftovers over the next few weeks so stay tuned!

xo, Rae

TILLY | lunchbox by state, backpack from Rockets of Awesome, jacket from Peek Kids, tee is old from Peek Kids, leather (ochre color) hair clip from Ryan and Wren, converse from Nordstrom

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1

WE MADE IT + CREAMY PEANUT BUTTER APPLE DIP RECIPE

Cheeeyeck!

We made it though the first full week of back to school and I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited for FRI-YAYAYAYAYAY!

A quick recap of how things have been going… The kids love their teachers and I love hearing all about their day when they get home. The whole concept of having to go to school 5 days in a row has Griffin a bit confused, but every morning he gets up and is such a trooper and every night he falls asleep super fast. Tilly’s anxiety levels are at an all time high (or after a long beautiful summer, I just forgot how bad it gets) and no one but Ozzie and Espen seem to be able to stay asleep and in their own beds at night. Clearly we have some work to do, but I am feeling extra lucky these days to be doing life with them, their big brudder and their daddy too!!

With the weather getting colder and rain in the forecast next week, we decided to take advantage of the sunshine so packed up our after school snack and headed to a wooded trail area just a few minutes from our home.

Are you guys ready for a mind blowing apple dip? Make it this weekend and I promise you’ll have your family and guests singing your praises. Here’s a few other apple dip options.

PEANUT BUTTER APPLE DIP

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 8 oz cream cheese (pull from fridge 30 minutes or so before making so it’s warmed up a bit)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  1. In a medium bowl, combine ingredients and then use a hand or stand mixer to whip together.
  2. Serve with sliced apples! Cover leftovers and store in the fridge.

I read somewhere this week that the outdoors makes the best playroom and I couldn’t agree more.

Griffey sandwich :) So fun to have all three of them at the same school this year.

Hope you all had the best week. Cheers to a fun weekend!

xo, Rae

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2

LITTLE BITES: UNICORN CRACKERS

If you have kids, chances are they’ve asked you for a snack all day everyday during the summer. It get’s a little tricky staying inspired while constantly feeding people for those couple months, but with school starting for my kids tomorrow, snack time is about to feel extra special. Having something fun to eat always seems to help get their attention while I ask a million questions about their day. ;)

A couple weeks ago I posted a quick snack tutorial on Instagram Stories (@raeannkelly) for making Unicorn Crackers and you guys loved the idea! Since stories are only available for 24 hours tho, I’ve been getting some DMs asking for the details again so thought I would share the how-to here. It also seems fitting with it being Back to School season — I mean, who doesn’t want to come home to Unicorn Crackers!?

UNICORN CRACKERS

You’ll Need:

Here’s How:

  1. Divide cream cheese into 4 bowls. Set 1 aside so you have white. Add food coloring to 3 other bowls according to package directions (I added 1/2 tsp of ours). Mix colors, but leave some streaks of darker and lighter shades.
  2. Using separate knives for each color, spread cream cheese onto crackers. Play around until you like how they look.
  3. Add sprinkles if you feel like it ;) + serve!

Don’t they look cute and delicious!? Be sure to share with friends and pin for safe keeping!

We’re headed to get haricuts this morning and then finish up some shopping for BTS. Can’t believe tomorrow is the big day and keep getting choked up over the smallest things. Gosh I’m going to miss my babies and probably even their request for a snack every 10 minutes, LOL.

I hope back to school season has been going smoothly for you guys!

xo, Rae

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FAVORITE GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICHES + A MEAL PLAN

(Griffin’s cute tee is 15% off through Labor Day weekend at GrilledCheeseFriday with code: GCF15)

Remember our Beecher’s grilled cheese at Pike Place Market, fail? Well, we made up for it by playing around with different grilled cheese combos at home. Sharing our favorites below, but first a meal plan for next week!

MONDAY | steak (this recipe looks yummy!), roasted potatoes, salad or green veggie

TUESDAY | salmon tacos (be sure to buy wild salmon!)

WEDNESDAYsalmon chowder

THURSDAY | thai turkey lettuce cups

FRIDAY | grilled cheese bar (see combo ideas below!)

BREAKKIE | breakfast burrito / taquito, cereal, hardboiled eggs

SNACK | popcorn, fresh fruit, cucumbers (from gigi + papa’s garden!), yogurt, edamame, hardboiled eggs

LUNCH | raviolis, PB+J’s and snacks from list above

I find menu planning is easier when there’s a theme for each night of the week. Can you guess what the themes are for next week?

Man Meat Monday | Taco Tuesday | Warm + Cozy Wednesday | Thai Food Thursday | Grilled Cheese Friday :)

Pretty tempted to make Fridays grilled cheese night this fall — a welcome change from pizza and it pairs so well with soup which is my personal favorite thing to make, eat and keep on hand once the weather cools off.

Don’t you love, love Griffin’s tee!? If you missed the details above — All Grilled Cheese Friday tees are 15% off through Labor Day weekend at with code: GCF15

Now for some yummy butter, bread, and cheesy combos!

CLASSIC GRILLED CHEESE using extra sharp white cheddar… the traditional orange kind has dye in it!

CAPRESE GRILLED CHEESE with pesto, basil, mozzarella and roma tomatoes.

DESSERT GRILLED CHEESE with brie, semi-sweet (or favorite) chocolate chips, and raspberries or strawberries on the side… inspired by a recipe that came with my Giada panini maker.

APPLE + HAM GRILLED CHEESE does not disappoint! Use  thin slices of apple, lots of white cheddar and sliced ham. It’s so good and gooey!

What’s your favorite way to make a grilled cheese?

Do you have dinner themes for different nights of the week?

Happy Friday loves!

xo . Rae

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