Monday, October 29, 2012


I thought I'd share some of my favorite Halloween treats from this year and last year.  Please notice how easy they all are.  Obviously someone has a little too much going on this year!

Here they are:

Witch's Brooms...pretzel stick in a Reese's Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup (the mini kind). 

White chocolate skeletons...self-explanatory, except use the markers that are edible!

White chocolate covered bones...this one wasn't the best, but it was all I had left before it was devoured...

Not pictured from this year are the Witch's Hats.  They are made from fudge-striped cookies with a dollup of brown/black icing and a chocolate "kiss" stuck on the icing in the middle of the upside down cookie (the brown side).  

You can also find:

Mummy Pizzas

Ghost Eclairs

An Amazing Witch's Brew

Hotdog Mummies

Bone Breadsticks

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Easiest ever Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffin recipe

These are pretty much a staple at my house in autumn.  You probably already have the recipe, but if you don' need it!  My friend, Stacey, one of those perpetually thin, beautiful people, recommended this recipe.  When you have a friend who is perfectly toned all the time, like Stacey, and she tells you she has a delicious recipe that is also VERY low in calories and tastes like it would be loaded with tend to listen.  Ever since she shared this recipe with 8 years ago or something...these muffins are a frequent visitor of the Allen household.  P.S.  Stacey was right...even with the chocolate chips...these only have 94 calories a piece!!!  Without the chocolate chips, the way Stacey makes them, they are only 54 calories a muffin!  If only I didn't crave that chocolate...

 Easiest Ever Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffin Recipe

1 box spice cake mix
1 16 oz. can pumpkin
3/4 C- 1 C chocolate chips
1/2 C water

Mix all ingredients together with mixer on low speed for about a minute and then on medium speed for another minute.  Spoon into greased muffin tins about 3/4 full.  Bake at 350 degrees or 20 minutes.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Chocolate Pancakes

Chocolate pancakes?  Why?  Here are my many reasons for making chocolate pancakes:

1.  They are full of whole grains
2.  They are delicious
3.  My kids absolutely loved them
4.  My husband loved them
5.  Cocoa is a powerful antioxidant and full of nutrients
6.  I didn't have to fight my kids to eat them
7.  Because they are so one knows if I burned them or not (just kidding!)

Chocolate Pancakes

3 C milk
2 eggs
1/4 C vegetable oil
2 1/2 C whole wheat flour
2/3 C unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Dutch Process Cocoa)
1/2 C sugar
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 T baking powder
1 tsp. salt

Mix together milk, eggs and oil.  Add flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  Mix on high speed for 2 minutes.  Bake on greased, preheated griddle.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Chicken Enchilada Soup

Okay, why do I love this soup so much?  Well, I saw a very similar recipe on a blog and thought..."hmmmm...that is full of veggies, my family probably wouldn't like it.  hmmm...but you do puree the veggies.  hmmm...I'm going to try this out and see how it goes over."  Well, I'm pleased as punch to tell you that my family LOVED it!  My husband kept saying, "This is AWESOME!"  My kids told me it was amazing...even my son who HATES butternut squash loved it.  They had no idea that is was amazing healthy with all kinds of pureed veggies composing the thick broth.  All they knew was that they LOVED it...that is a winner in my book.

Chicken Enchilada Soup

8 C chicken broth (or 8 C water and 8 tsp. powdered chicken broth)
3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I used frozen)
1 large yellow onion, peeled and roughly chopped
3-4 medium potatoes
2 red bell peppers, seeded and roughly chopped
3 cloves garlic
1/2 medium butternut squash, peeled and chopped ( had mine already pureed and stored in the freezer)
3 cloves garlic
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. cumin

Place all of the above ingredients in a large pot.  Bring to a full boil.  Reduce heat and cover and simmer for about 20 minutes or until veggies are soft and chicken is cooked through.  Remove chicken and puree the rest of the soup in a blender.  Return pureed soup to pot.  Chop or shred chicken into bite-size pieces.


3/4 C sour cream
1-8 oz. can tomato sauce
4 C cooked Great Northern beans (2 cans)
2 T taco seasoning

Stir in above ingredients and mix in cooked chicken.  Serve with tortilla chips, shredded cheese, etc.

For Delicious Vegetarian Version:

Switch chicken broth for vegetable broth, do not add any chicken and stop after addition of cumin.   Puree veggies and return to pot.  I've done this with the chicken broth only, but it was delicious WITHOUT the chicken in it!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Chunky Broccoli Cheese Soup

Autumn is finally here!  The nights are brisk and cold and the morning air is crisp with the dusting of ice on the grass.  Its that favorite time of the year.  It is the time for soup.  This soup was a huge hit with my family and since it uses a was a huge hit for me.

Chunky Broccoli Cheese Soup

3 T powdered chicken broth
10 C water
3-5 chicken boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Mix above ingredients in crockpot and cook on low for about 4-6 hours or until chicken is cooked through and no pink remains.  Cut chicken into cubes with kitchen scissors.  When you have about an hour left of cooking, add cut broccoli...I added three heads of broccoli to my soup.

1/2 C butter
3/4 C whole wheat flour
1 C milk
3 C shredded cheddar cheese

Melt butter in saucepan over low heat on stove.  Add whole wheat flour and stir.  Slowly stir into crockpot until all flour/butter is dissolved into the soup and it starts to thicken a little.  Let cook on high for about 15 minutes.  Add 1 C of milk and stir in cheese.  Cook soup in crockpot on high until all cheese is melted.

That is it...easy, delicious, and healthy!