Asparagus, Bacon & Cream Cheese Quiche

We are back to bacon.

Can’t get enough.

So when I told my husband that I want to make a quiche for dinner, his response was “One of those pie things?”

He seemed less than excited about it SO of course I went ahead and made it anyway.

He changed his mind in about one bite, realized how delicious it is and went in for seconds.

I mean what’s not to love!?

Flaky, buttery crust. Steamed asparagus. Crunchy bacon. And the cream cheese, well that was the star in my eyes. It kept its shape but the texture was creamy and velvety – melt in your mouth ahhmazing.

On a separate note, have you guys tried spin? Well, you really should. It’s incredible!

For those of you who don’t know what spin is it’s a biking class.

Sounds easy right? Not!

So picture this, you go in a room full of bikes. The lights turn off and the music starts. And you start spinning. Your instructor screams at you the entire time to go faster, increase the resistance, get off the seat, go faster and faster and faster until you feel like your legs and butt are on fire and you’re about to fall of the damn bike. You’re having hard time catching your breath and have drank most of your water while you sweat like a pig. And then you look at clock and it’s only been 15 mins and you have 45 more to go. And you wanna die. You keep asking yourself why are you putting yourself through this torture and is it ever going to end. Then the instructor who is by the way a complete hottie comes over to you and tells you that you’ve got this and you can go faster. So you do.  And then he says that you only have 3 songs left and you need to give him all you got. Even though you’ve got nothing left… So you spin faster than you ever did… and it’s finally over. You’re legs are jelly and you have hard time walking, your butt hurts from the seat, yet you feel so accomplished and ready to take on the world.

Yep, that pretty much sums it up.

It’s not a walk in the park at all! It’s extremely intense but you burn off a ton of calories and it’s great way to get lean and toned. It’s hard work but with the right instructor and music it’s almost enjoyable. Almost.

What do you guys think about spin? What is your favorite gym class? Always open to trying new things :)

Anyways, here’s the recipe!

Asparagus, Bacon & Cream Cheese Quiche

Serves: 6

Ingredients:

  • 1 pie crust
  • 1/2 lb asparagus, ends trimmed and cut into 1in pieces
  • 4 slices bacon, chopped up
  • 1/2  small onion
  • 4 oz cream cheese, room temp, cut up
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Directions:

  1. Roll out pie dough and transfer to pie plate. Freeze for 30min.
  2. Preheat oven to 350F. Line the pie crust with foil and fill it with uncooked rice or beans. Bake for 30mins.
  3. Take out of the oven and remove the foil and beads. Bake for additional 10mins.
  4. Make the filling:
  5. In a boiling slightly salted water, cook the asparagus for 2 mins. Remove the asparagus to a bowl and cover with ice cold water to stop the cooking process.
  6. In a saucepan, over medium high heat cook the beacon. Once crispy remove to plate lined with paper towel.
  7. Add the onions to the bacon fat and cook until soft and translucent.
  8. Add the garlic and cook for 1min.
  9. In a bowl combine the heavy cream, eggs, salt and pepper.
  10. When the crust is done baking, remove from the oven. Increase oven temp to 400F.
  11. Spread the bacon and cooked onions on the bottom of the crust, topped with asparagus and cream cheese pieces.
  12. Pour the heavy cream mixture on top.
  13. Bake for 30-40mins or until the filling is firm and crust is golden.
  14. Let cool for at least 20 mins before serving.

Source:

Oreos and cheesecake.

It doesn’t get more magical than this!

This is an easy cheesecake dessert that is creamy, dreamy and absolutely delightful.

Definitely one of my faves!

Now, don’t count calories making this. Your head will explode, but trust me every bite is worth it!

So go ahead have a slice and share the rest with your family and friends.

Take it to work and you’ll become very popular I’m sure.

Also if you are afraid that your cheesecake will crack, don’t be! Just make sure your ingredients are room temp! I left everything out for about 30mins and it was fine.

Also don’t overbeat your filling!

After your cheesecake is done, let it sit at room temp for at least 1hr before putting it in the fridge.

Water baths are also great for cheesecakes I know but I don’t have the patience for that so I just skip it. So far I’ve never had issues with cracks, it’s more luck than anything else I’m sure.

Anyways, cracks or no cracks this cheesecake is deelish!

Cookies & Cream Cheesecake Bars

Serves: 24

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of oreos
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 (8oz) cream cheese*
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup sour cream*
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt (I used fine sea salt)
  • 3 large eggs*

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325F.
  2. Line a 9×13 baking dish with aluminum foil letting it overhang on each end.
  3. In a large zip lock bag crush 26 oreos with rolling-pin. Add the butter, stir with a spatula.
  4. Transfer the buttered oreo crumbs to the baking sheet and press down with your hands.
  5. Bake for 10mins. Remove from oven and let cool on wire rack.
  6. In a mixer combine the cream cheese and sugar. Beat for 2 mins on medium speed.
  7. Add the sour cream, vanilla and salt, beat to combine.
  8. Add the eggs one at a time and beat after each addition.
  9. Crush the remaining oreos and fold in the cream cheese mixture.
  10. Transfer the filling over the cooled oreo crust and even out with a spatula.
  11. Bake for 40mins or until the edges are set but the middle is still wobbly.
  12. Let cool on a wire rack for 1hr.
  13. Refrigerate for at least 3 hrs**.
  14. Cut and serve!

*at room temp

** best refrigerated overnight

Source:

Cream Cheese Stuffed Lemon Pepper Chicken

I’ve been loving prosciutto and stuffing chicken with cheese lately. Like totally obsessed.

But this obsessions like any other will pass, I promise.

Just like my obsession with everything peanut butter and chocolate is starting to slowly fade.

Ok maybe not. I don’t think that will ever pass.

What can I say I love the simple things.

And I just love me some lemon pepper chicken.

Add some cheese to the mix and I’m pretty much in heaven! Deelish!

I actually cooked my chicken in the same baking sheet I made my roasted green beans in.

I’m all about not doing dishes, so this was a perfect one pan meal!

Just put everything in the oven and in 20mins Voila! dinner and side all ready!

Cream Cheese Stuffed Lemon Pepper Chicken

Serves: 2 (easily multiplied)

Ingredients:

  • 2 4oz chicken breasts
  • 1 oz fat-free cream cheese
  • 2 tbsp shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • sprinkle of dried basil, pepper, sea salt and red pepper flakes

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425F.
  2. Pound chicken breast thin.
  3. Season both sides of each chicken breast with a pinch of sea salt, pepper and basil.
  4. Place 1/2 oz of cream cheese in the middle of each chicken breast, a pinch of red pepper flakes and a drizzle of lemon juice. Roll up. Secure with a toothpick.
  5. Place on a baking pan and drizzle the tops of the chicken breasts with the remaining lemon juice.
  6. Sprinkle parmesan on top and bake for 20mins or until chicken is cooked through and juices run clear.
  7. Serve with roasted green bean bundles.

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes

I baked you some cupcakes.

And they are not chocolate.

Now, that’s a first!

So my sister was having a slumber party at my house a few weeks ago and I wanted to make a totally adorable dessert for the girls to enjoy.

So after a girl in my Bunco group made a strawberry lemonade cake that I couldn’t get enough of and fell totally in love with it I knew that was the perfect dessert for the girls, but in a cupcake form of course:) I mean the cupcakes are pink! PINK! What teenage girl (or me) doesn’t love pink? And sprinkles?

Sign me up!

So off I went on Pinterest to find the recipe and sure enough I had already pinned it :) If you’ve looked at my boards you would know that I’m completely pin-obsessed!

And I totally cheated and used box mix.

Sue me now.

I personally have nothing against box mixes.

Nothing.

They are cheap, easy and convenient. I know as a foodie I should be completely repulsed by them, but why when they make life so much easier. Especially when you are short on time, no measuring of ingredients involved, no sifting just combine the mix with some eggs and oil, bake and enjoy :)

And I was impressed with how tasty the cupcake actually was! Very light and moist :)

And the frosting is a simple cream cheese/cool whip based frosting that takes 5mins to whip up! And I love the lemonade frosting! The sweetness of the strawberry cupcake and the tangyness of the lemonade frosting compliment each other perfectly :)

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • strawberry lemonade cake mix (and any extra ingredients needed)
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 0.23oz packet Kool-Aid Lemonade
  • yellow food coloring gel(until desired color is reached)
  • 2 cups marshmallow creme
  • 8 oz cool whip topping
  • sprinkles for garnish

Directions:

  1. Make the cupcakes according to box directions.
  2. Let them cool completely before frosting.
  3. In the bowl of electric mixer, beat the cream cheese, kool-aid and food coloring until smooth.
  4. Add the marshmallow creme and beat to combine.
  5. Add the cool whip and mix until completely smooth.
  6. Frost the cooled cupcakes and decorate with sprinkles.

Source:

Cinnamon roll.

For a novice baker homemade cinnamon rolls could seem intimidating and quite daunting and really not worth going through all the trouble when you could buy a can of Cinnabon at the store.

That’s exactly how I felt until last year.

And then one day last winter I decided to take on the challenge and make Pioneer Woman’s Cinnamon Rolls.

My life changed…

and I never bought store-bought cinnamon rolls again.

Ree’s cinnamon rolls are indulgent, sweet and beyond heavenly, but I always felt extremely guilty after I had 1.

So here’s a lightened up version!

It still tastes sweet, cinnamony and fabulous but with fewer calories! :)

Here’s how :)

Lighter Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Glaze

Makes about 25 rolls

For the rolls:

  • 2 cups skim milk
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 package active dry yeast, 0.25 oz pack
  • 4 cups(+1/2cup extra) AP flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6 tbsp melted light butter
  • 6 tbsp sugar
  • lots of cinnamon

Directions: In a saucepan combine the milk, oil and sugar. Heat over medium heat until just under a boil. Set aside and let it cool until lukewarm. Sprinkle the yeast and let it sit for 1min. Add 4 cups of flour and stir to combine. Cover with a kitchen towel and set aside in a warm place for 1 hr. After 1 hr stir in the baking powder, baking soda,salt and remaining 1/2 cup flour. Chill for at least 1hr before use. *At this point I divided the dough and half and stored 1/2 of it in the freezer to use for another time! :) You of course can use all of it at once!

Once the dough has been chilled for at least 1hr and it’s easier to work with, roll the dough into a large rectangle about 30in by 10in until. It should be very thin! Brush (or spoon) the melted butter all over the dough, then sprinkle a generous layer of cinnamon. Sprinkle the sugar. Starting with the end farthest from you, roll the rectangle tightly towards you. Roll it as tightly as you can. Put a cutting board underneath the roll and slice the roll into 3/4 to 1in thick slices. Transfer the sliced rolls into cooking spray sprayed baking dishes (do not overcrowd the pans) and cover with a towel. Let rise, covered, for 20 mins. Bake in 375F preheat oven for 15-18 mins or until golden brown. While the rolls are baking make the icing.

Cream Cheese Glaze:

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3+ cups powdered sugar
  • milk, if needed

Directions: Beat the cream cheese with electric mixer until fluffy about 3mins. Beat in the vanilla. Slowly 1/2 cup at a time start adding the powdered sugar until desired consistency is achieved. If frosting is too thick add 1 tsp at a time of milk to thin out. The frosting should be somewhat thick but spreadable.

Once the cinnamon rolls are baked, pour the glaze on top right away :)

Adapted from:

This is one of the side dishes I made for Thanksgiving :)

Thanks Nicole for the beautiful baking dish :)

But you can enjoy it any day of the year!

It involves some of my favorite things: potatoes, butter, bacon, cream cheese and cheddar…

One of my favorite side dishes :)

And it couldn’t be easier to make!

And it’s a crowd pleaser- I mean is there anyone out there who doesn’t like mashed potatoes? I think not!

Baked Mashed Potatoes

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 lbs russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 2 oz cream cheese, cubed
  • 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled

Directions: Put the cubed potatoes in a pot and cover with water and add a pinch of salt. Over medium-high heat, bring to a boil, then reduce to low and cook until fork-tender (10-15mins).

Preheat oven to 350F.

In a saucepan, combine the milk and butter and cook over medium heat until the butter is completely melted.

Drain the potatoes and mash in a bowl. Slowly add the butter mixture and stir to combine. Add 3/4 cup of cheddar cheese and let it melt. Stir in the garlic powder. Taste and add seasoning accordingly. Pour the potatoes in a cooking spray sprayed baking dish and top with remaining cheese. Top with crumbled bacon.

Bake for 30mins and serve immediately.

 

So it’s almost Thanksgiving Day and you’re wondering what to make for dessert, right?

Should you go the traditional route and make a pie?

Or should you experiment with something new? Well I think this pumpkin roll is the perfect substitute for pumpkin pie!

Last year I made Ina Garten’s Pumpkin Roulade that completely changed my mind about pumpkin.

It was a flavor that didn’t appeal to me at all and I absolutely hated pumpkin pie.

Well altought I still don’t like pumpkin pie, pumpkin cookies or a roll – I am all over it :)

So this year I wanted to attempt a skinny pumpkin roll…

And it tasted just as wonderful!!!

This roll has a mild pumpkin flavor that marries perfectly with my favorite fall spices: cinnamon and nutmeg, add the cream cheese filling and the crunchy walnuts to the mix it’s just a delightful dessert!

And it’s actually light? Ohh yes! About 190 calories per slice :)

Skinny Pumpkin Roll with Walnut Cream Cheese Filling

Servings: 13

For the roll:

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup AP flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup canned pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie filling!)
  • non-stick spray
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar (to sprinkle on towel)

For the Frosting:

  • 8 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Directions: Preheat oven to 375F. Spray a 15×10 jelly roll pan with non-stick spray, line with parchment paper, spray that with non-stick spray and lightly dust with flour.

Sift all the dry ingredients together.

Beat the eggs and sugar with your electric mixer until they turn pale yellow, thick and fluffy (about 5mins). Beat in the vanilla and pumpkin until combined. Slowly fold in the dry ingredients (using a spatula). Pour the batter evenly in the prepared pan and bake for 13-15 mins or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Sprinkle a clean dish towel with the powdered sugar. Once finished baking, invert the cake on the towel and gently peel off the parchment paper. Roll the cake with the towel and let it cool completely before filling.

While the cake is cooling make the frosting: Beat the cream cheese with a hand mixer or electric mixer until light and fluffy (about 2 mins). With the mixer on low, slowly start adding the powdered sugar, incorporating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract. With a rubber spatula fold in the chopped walnuts.

Once cooled, unroll the cake and frost with the cream cheese frosting. Roll it again (without the towel) and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve. This roll is better served the next day as the flavors had time to marry and it’s easier to cut. Before serving sprinkle lightly with powdered sugar.

Adapted from:

I’m a big fat cheater.

I know.

So this might seem very similar to my caramel apple french toast.

And well it pretty much is the same thing.

I have been completely obsessing over that french toast and have been experimenting with french toast ever since.

And since I ran out of apples, I figured why not use bananas!?

Makes perfect sense, right?

And it turned out pretty awesome :)

Only problem is that we’ve been having french toast everyday for the last week or so, and my love handles are starting to suffer.

And my scale is about to break.

And I pretty much have a heart attack every time I look at the said scale.

Like the number keeps going up and up,

and I keep wondering why?

Well between eating dozens of cupcakes, drinking a little more than usual, indulging in all things cheesy, and eating more french toast then it should be legal, I should just be happy that my jeans fit at all…

And Chris is not immune to it either.

He stepped on the scale today and was like “What the heck?” so starting tomorrow we’ll both go on a diet….

Let’s see how long that one lasts…sigh…

Tonight we indulged for the last time in some ahhmazing food! We went to our favorite tapas place which never disappoints :) Always absolutely deelish and I can’t believe I haven’t blogged about it yet…Especially since I go there at least once a week…

But for now, just eat some french toast :)

By the way, I am totally obsessed with One More Night by Maroon 5.

Even though I hear it a thousand times a day, I can’t get enough of it! And I just found out that Maroon 5 will be here in March! OMG I have to be there! I know what I want for Christmas this year ;)

Banana Foster Stuffed French Toast

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 4 slices Texas Toast Bread
  • 2 oz cream cheese softened
  • 1 1/2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1 medium ripe banana, sliced
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk, skim
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • cinnamon

Directions:

For the Banana Foster: In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and brown sugar. Add the bananas and cook until soft, cover and turn the heat off while preparing everything else.

For the french toast batter: In a shallow dish whisk the eggs, milk, vanilla and some cinnamon.

For the bread: In a bowl, combine the cream cheese and powdered sugar. Spread on all the bread sliced. Divide the bananas among 2 slices of bread and top with the remaining 2.

Assemble: Heat a skillet to medium heat and melt some butter. Dip each bread sandwich into the batter and fry in the pan until golden brown on each side. Transfer to a plate, serve immediately with maple syrup.

Chocoholics Cheesecake

OMG!

This cheesecake is ahhmazing!

So I have to admit, I’m terrified of baking cheesecakes.

Pretty much as terrified as making pie crust!

I have made plenty of no bake cheesecakes but never a real cheesecake.

So it was time to face my fears and get it done!

The whole time I was making it, I was praying to the cheesecake gods that my cheesecake doesn’t crack.

And well, it didn’t!!!

After a night in the fridge, I was prepared to see a sad, cracked cheesecake, but was pleasantly surprised :)

And guess what – no water bath!!!

It’s all starts with an oreo crust, the cheesecake is very creamy, with a hint of coffee and intense chocolate flavor. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream, caramel(or chocolate) drizzle and some chocolate chips and you have one super indulgent and delicious dessert :)

Here’s how to make it:

Chocoholics Cheesecake

Makes 1 (12in) cheesecake

For the crust:

  • 30 oreo cookies, finely crushed
  • 4 tbsp butter, melted

Directions: In a bowl combine the crushed oreos and melted butter and mix with a spatula until it looks like a wet sand. Spread the mixture in a 12 in (cooking spray sprayed) springform pan, making sure to go up the sides. Set aside while preparing the cheesecake.

Cheesecake:

  • 3 (8oz) packages cream cheese, room temp
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp instant espresso
  • 4 large eggs, room temp

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325F.

In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Add the sour cream, sugar, salt and vanilla and beat until combined. Add the melted chocolate, cocoa powder and instant espresso and beat until incorporated. One by one, add in the eggs and mix just until incorporated. Pour in the prepared oreo crust.

Bake for 50 mins or until the cheesecake is firm but the middle looks wet and a little wobbly.

Turn the oven off, open the oven door and let the cheesecake cool in the oven for 2 hrs.

Cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight.

I’ve been neglecting you for the last few days, I’m sorry.

But I’ve been extremely busy moving.

And now I am like totally exhausted.

I’m never moving again.

Seriously! Such a pain in the butt!

I still have like 20 million boxes to unpack but the major things are done.

I love how things are starting to come together and it’s beginning to look like a home :)

Pics to come soon! But in the cookie shot (up top) you can see the granite I picked- I love the color and it’s really easy to keep clean :)

Anyways, fall has finally arrived! I’ve been waiting for it for a while now and it’s finally here! Bring out the soups, comfy sweats and pumpkin!

It’s time to open up a can of pumpkin and make some cookies!

And up until last year, I didn’t like pumpkin…or so I thought. Then I made a pumpkin roulade for a potluck, I realized how delicious it is and now I am pretty much obsessed!

So with that being said, you should expect a lot of pumpkin recipes to come :)

Starting with these whoopie pies!

They’re quick and easy to make, need a few basic ingredients and will be gone in no time!

This makes a small batch of cookies!!! About 6 whoopie pies so if you are cooking for more than 2 people make a double even triple batch because they are gone super quick!!!

They lasted 15mins in my house :)

Here’s the recipe!

Pumpkin Cookies:

Makes 12-14 cookies (6-7 whoopie pies)

Ingredients:

  • 4 tbsp (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie filling!)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

Directions: Preheat oven to 350F.

In the bowl of electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the pumpkin, egg and vanilla and beat to combine. With the mixer on low, slowly start adding the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg and beat until all the dry ingredients are incorporated. Drop the batter (about 2 tbsps) on the cookie sheet and cook for 10-12 mins.

Let cool completely on a wire rack!

For the Cinnamon Whipped Filling:

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream, cold
  • 4 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Directions:

In a bowl with a mixer, beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Add the heavy cream and beat until stiff peaks form. Add the powdered sugar and cinnamon and beat to combine.

Assemble your whoopie pies!