Category Archives: Recipes


Crockpot Chicken Vegetable Quinoa Soup

I don’t know about you, but for our family, easy dinners are the name of the game. I’ve always been a big fan of cooking, but the busier we get, the harder it is to open up a recipe book and throw together an elaborate meal to serve on a random Monday night.

We’ve had this crockpot meets rice cooker meets pressure cooker (a.k.a., an Instant Pot) in our pantry for years. Seriously, we got an Instant Pot as a wedding gift and never opened the box … and we’ve been married six years. I know, I know. Clearly, I have a screw loose. Little did I know, the most magical kitchen contraption ever sat unused and unloved in our overcrowded pantry for all these years. I can’t fathom what I was thinking – or not thinking – by ignoring this mystical machine.

Anyhoo, I saw all the rage ALL over the internet about this fabulous pot, and I decided to take the leap … and OPEN the box. I started researching and trying recipes like a madwoman. I think I served hubby and Scarlett dinner out of a crockpot for two weeks straight. It was like a black hole of simple dinners. Basically, the beauty of an Instant Pot or crockpot, is that you essentially throw all of your ingredients in, set the machine to cook for several hours, and walk away. By dinner time, you have a tasty dinner. Granted, there are some crockpot meals that require a little more TLC; i.e., browning meat and veggies first, cooking in stages, etc., but I steered clear of those recipes, because, you know, if I’m going to attempt to make my life easier with a slew of crockpot dinners, I plan on doing it the EASY way.

On our Instant Pot dinner recipe journey, I discovered a few GREAT recipes, and over the next few months, I’ll share our favorites here, with some tweaks of course. (Because I just can’t help myself.)

Now let’s talk about that crockpot chicken vegetable and quinoa soup …

This amazing crockpot (or instant pot) chicken vegetable and quinoa soup is healthy and hearty and requires so little work it's kind of embarrassing. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

First up is a variation on the crockpot chicken veggie quinoa soup from Chelsea’s Messy Apron. This dinner is definitely of the “empty out your fridge and pantry” variety. Our favorite crockpot chicken vegetable and quinoa soup is healthy and hearty and requires so little work it’s kind of embarrassing. I tweaked a few components to the original recipe, after a bit of trial and error, and my entire family is obsessed with the results.

You can really use just about any vegetables you happen to have on hand, though I do try to keep the carrots, onion, celery, and corn (because the little one loves it!) a constant, and I pretty much always have those hanging out in the back of our refrigerator produce drawer and pantry anyway. I also always tend to add a lot of beans – typically some combination of either black beans, white beans, and/or chickpeas. Adding in frozen veggies like corn and carrots works well too.

We’ve tried the recipe using first a can of diced tomatoes with green chiles (like Ro-Tel) and it was great, but then I got this wild idea to make the soup with a tub of fresh salsa we had forgotten about, and that resulted in a crockpot chicken vegetable quinoa soup that was even more flavorful. Both work, but if you’ve got the salsa on hand, go for it! You can thank me later.

This amazing crockpot (or instant pot) chicken vegetable and quinoa soup is healthy and hearty and requires so little work it's kind of embarrassing. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc This amazing crockpot (or instant pot) chicken vegetable and quinoa soup is healthy and hearty and requires so little work it's kind of embarrassing. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

CROCKPOT CHICKEN VEGETABLE QUINOA SOUP

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 6 hr

Servings: 6-8

INGREDIENTS

1 pound (approx. 2 large) boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 cans of beans (we use some combination of black beans, pinto beans, white beans, and/or chickpeas)
1 can corn OR 1 bag of frozen corn
1/2 cup thinly sliced carrots
1/2 cup thinly sliced celery 2 stalks
1/3 cup diced yellow onion
3/4 cup quinoa
1 container of fresh salsa OR a can of diced tomatoes with green chiles (like Ro-Tel)
1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
2 teaspoons minced garlic
5 cups chicken broth/stock
1/2 cup orange juice or extra broth
Salt and pepper
1-2 leaves bay (optional)
1 teaspoon chicken seasoning blend or 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika

Optional Toppings: sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, fresh cilantro, fresh lime wedges

DIRECTIONS

  1. Trim the fat off the chicken breasts. Cut each breast into 3 large even pieces.
  2. Place the chicken breasts chunks in the bottom of a large crockpot.
  3. Add in the drained and rinsed beans, drained corn, thinly sliced carrots (you want them to cook all the way through), sliced celery, diced onion, quinoa (rinse if not pre-rinsed to remove the bitter saponin coating), undrained container of fresh salsa OR can of diced tomatoes with green chiles (such as Ro-Tel), tomato paste, minced garlic, chicken broth/stock, and orange juice (or extra broth).
  4. Add about 1 teaspoon of salt (or to taste) and 1 teaspoon of pepper (or to taste), bay leaves, chicken seasoning or bouillon, oregano, and paprika. Just use your favorite soup seasonings here. The idea is that crockpot soups tend to really soak everything up, and need a little extra seasoning to maintain that rich flavor.
  5. Give everything a good stir and then cover and cook on high for 5 hours or until the chicken easily shreds. The longer it cooks, the more liquid the quinoa absorbs, but I prefer to cook it for awhile so that the veggies (like the carrots and celery) cook all the way through and the flavors really meld.
  6. Remove the chicken and shred. (I’m a big fan of throwing all of the cooked chicken chunks into my mixer, and mixing it for a few minutes – shreds it perfectly every time!) Return shredded chicken to the crockpot and cook for another hour.
  7. Remove the bay leaves and then enjoy the soup topped with optional toppings such as fresh cilantro or parsley, fresh lime, sour cream, and/or shredded cheddar cheese.

NOTE: For a “brothier” soup just add a few extra cups of chicken broth.

Recipe adapted via Chelsea’s Messy Apron

This amazing crockpot (or instant pot) chicken vegetable and quinoa soup is healthy and hearty and requires so little work it's kind of embarrassing. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

You can keep this soup healthy by eating it just the way it is or topping it with a bit of fresh parsley or cilantro or a squeeze of lime, but it also tastes great topped with shredded cheddar cheese or a dollop of sour cream.

This amazing crockpot (or instant pot) chicken vegetable and quinoa soup is healthy and hearty and requires so little work it's kind of embarrassing. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Our toddler absolutely LOVES this crockpot chicken vegetable and quinoa soup. It’s super flavorful, is packed with healthy ingredients, and everything cooks down really soft with a hint of sweetness (thanks to the carrots and corn.) Both hubby and Scarlett always ask for seconds of this soup and considering how little effort the entire meal took, I call that a serious MOM WIN.

This amazing crockpot (or instant pot) chicken vegetable and quinoa soup is healthy and hearty and requires so little work it's kind of embarrassing. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

How about you? Have you hopped on the Instant Pot bandwagon yet? What other crockpot meals do you love? Send me your suggestions!

Photography by Coffee Beans & Bobby Pins


Lexi

My Absolute Favorite Red Velvet Cupcakes (in a Jar)

I make a lot of recipes. Some need tweaking, some totally flop, and some are so good that they become instant favorites in my family. The recipe for these red velvet cupcakes (a.k.a., red velvet cake) is one of those go-to recipes. We can’t get enough. These red velvet cupcakes (in a jar) really are SO good. The red velvet (a.k.a., chocolate cake) in these cupcakes is moist and subtly sweet and the cream cheese frosting is decadent and the perfect addition to the red velvet cupcake.

How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

This amazing red velvet cupcake recipe is originally from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook. And I should probably explain how we stumbled upon these ridiculously amazing red velvet cupcakes.  We went to London many moons ago and took a trip to one of my favorite markets along Portobello Road. We just kind of fell into Hummingbird Bakery while there. Actually, we waited in a line that bordered on not-worth-the-wait; but you know, the bigger the line, the more worth the wait it must be.  Besides, we were American tourists, and if the locals were lined up at this tiny little bakery (when the market is full of street vendors and pretty yummy quick food to go), we knew it had to be good. It wasn’t just good, it was amazing … like, hurt-your-face-it’s-so-rich-and-sweet-and-delicate amazing.

We bought two cupcakes, much to my husband’s dismay (he was definitely plotting to tackle at least a dozen or so), sat on a curb, and ate the sticky sweet cupcakes with our fingers. We had pigeons as an audience. And it was heaven. Clearly we weren’t the only ones who thought so; clusters of people were all sitting on the curb scarfing down on cupcakes, cookies, pie, all from that tiny little bakery … which probably made my husband wish we had picked out at least ten other desserts. Long story short, the trip came to an end way too fast and we never got that chance to swing by for a second trip to the bakery. But trust me, it’s on our list the second we find ourselves back in London.

Well hubby ended up hunting down The Hummingbird Bakery cookbook on Amazon, and to my front door it arrived! Years later and I’ve baked several awesome recipes from that cookbook. As for these red velvet cupcakes, I made minor alterations to the frosting, only because I like my cream cheese frosting with full cream cheese frosting impact, but other than that, I stayed very true to the very fabulous Hummingbird Bakery recipe.  A few secrets to these incredibly moist cupcakes: not too much cocoa (just the right amount!), buttermilk, and vinegar … plus the ever decadent classic cream cheese frosting. Like I said, these are the best.

How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

THE BEST RED VELVET CUPCAKES, EVER.

Makes 12 cupcakes or one sheet pan of cake.

INGREDIENTS

For the Cupcakes:

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 egg
2½ tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons red food coloring
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup buttermilk
1 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
1½ teaspoons distilled white vinegar

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

4 ounces butter, at room temperature
8 ounces (1 bar) cream cheese, at room temperature (Note:  The recipe calls for 4 ounces, but I’m a glutton!)
2½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS

NOTE: If you decide to make your cupcakes “in a jar,” you’ll actually be baking a red velvet sheet cake in a rectangular baking pan, and then scooping out the finished cake to create your cupcake layers. Both cupcakes and cupcakes in a jar taste delicious!

1. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line a standard muffin/cupcake pan with cupcake liners or spray a rectangular baking pan with baking spray. (I’m a big fan of coconut oil cooking spray; it’ doesn’t have any weird aftertaste and it’s made with 100% coconut oil.)

2. On medium-high speed, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Turn the mixer to high and add the egg. Scrape down the bowl and beat until well incorporated.

3. In a separate small bowl, mix together the cocoa powder, vanilla extract and red food coloring to make a thick paste. Add to the batter and mix on medium speed until completely combined. You may need to stop the mixer to scrape the bottom of the bowl, making sure that all of the batter gets color.

4. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add half of the buttermilk. Add half of the flour and mix until combined. Scrape the bowl and repeat the process with the remaining milk and flour. Beat on high until smooth.

5. Again, reduce the mixer speed to low and add the salt, baking soda and vinegar.* Turn to high and beat for another couple of minutes until completely combined and smooth.

6. Divide the batter evenly between the cupcake liners or our all of the batter into a rectangular baking pan (if you’re making the cupcakes in a jar) and bake for about 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the largest cupcake comes out clean. (Be sure not to fill the cupcake liners with batter any more than 2/3 of the way up – these babies rise.)

7. Cool for 10 minutes and then remove cupcakes from the pan and place them on a cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.

8. To make the frosting: Using the whisk attachment, beat the powdered sugar and butter together.  Mix on slow-medium speed until it comes together, being careful to keep the powdered sugar in the mixing bowl.  Add the cream cheese all at once and continue mixing, scraping the bowl down as necessary. Add the vanilla and mix to combine. Increase the speed to medium-high and whip for a few minutes until the frosting is light and fluffy, scraping the bowl as necessary. Do not over-beat as the frosting can quickly become runny.

Recipe Adapted from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook by Tarek Malouf

How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

I love that cupcakes in a jar can act as the perfect sweet little gift to give to family and friends. I mean, who wouldn’t want a cupcake in a jar on Valentine’s Day?

How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

We made these fun little sticker labels – “handmade with love” – to top each of the jars!

How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

You can find the adorable hand drawn wreath vectors on Curly Made to create your own labels.

How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make my absolute FAVORITE moist red velvet cupcakes. Put them in jars for the sweetest gift! Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Psst … if you’re looking for Valentine’s Day inspiration, why not try the prettiest marbled graham cracker toffee barkthe perfect sugar cookies for decorating (we used pink rock candy!), throw together a last-minute date night (from the comfort of your sofa!) or Galentine’s Day party, DIY the cutest mess-free craft with your little ones, make strawberry cheesecake macarons, big and fluffy homemade raspberry marshmallowsOreo macaronsnutella-chocolate covered strawberries, boozy strawberry slushies, or any one of these 14 favorite valentine’s day desserts?

SHOP THE POST | CLICK LEFT & RIGHT ARROWS TO EXPLORE

 

Photos by Annie Watts Photography

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission. Thank you so much for clicking through and helping to support this little blog business of mine! Read more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here.


Lexi

How to Make Boozy Strawberry Slushies

Isn’t it funny how mixing together a cocktail or celebratory mixed drink can really make even the simplest event feel special? Blended fruit and bubbly, is one of life’s simple pleasures if you ask me. And when it comes to these boozy strawberry slushies, these perfectly pink drinks are whimsical, fun, and taste freaking delicious. They’d be perfect for nearly any spring or summer-time celebration, but could also totally work for Valentine’s Day (or Galentine’s Day!)

Prep is minimal, so you’ll be blending party cocktails in no time, and call this drink what you will – frozen cocktails, boozy slushies, spritzers – a frozen alcohol-spiked beverage is always a crowd pleaser.

How to Make Boozy Strawberry Slushies. These cocktails are simple, whimsical, fun, and taste freaking delicious. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

How to Make Boozy Strawberry Champagne Slushies

INGREDIENTS

1 16 oz container strawberries (hulled, washed and drained)
about 2 tablespoons honey
1 bottle of champagne or prosecco
ice cube trays

DIRECTIONS

  1. Add strawberries and honey to blender and blend until all chunks have disappeared. Pour the strawberry mixture into ice cube trays and freeze until completely solid.*
  2. Once ice cubes have frozen, remove them from the trays and toss them back into your blender. Add approximately one bottle of champagne or prosecco and blend until a thick slushy consistency has formed.
  3. Serve immediately.

*NOTE: If you want your slushies to be extra thick, you can blend together the champagne or prosecco with the strawberries and honey and freeze the entire mizture in several ice cube trays before blending again to serve. (See step 1.)

How to Make Boozy Strawberry Slushies. These cocktails are simple, whimsical, fun, and taste freaking delicious. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Fun tip: Using a small, sharp knife (like a paring knife), you can make hearts out of your strawberries. Just slice your strawberries in half, cut a “V” at the top center, and then using the tip of your knife round out the corners. So pretty and a cute way to decorate your glasses.

How to Make Boozy Strawberry Slushies. These cocktails are simple, whimsical, fun, and taste freaking delicious. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to Make Boozy Strawberry Slushies. These cocktails are simple, whimsical, fun, and taste freaking delicious. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

By the way, you can find these pretty gold-plated glasses here.

If you find yourself blending up a batch of boozy strawberry slushies, be sure to tag me on social media (@glitterinclexi) so I can live vicariously through all of your fun parties and celebrations!

Photos by Annie Watts Photography

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission. Thank you so much for clicking through and helping to support this little blog business of mine! Read more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here.


Lexi

Marbled Graham Cracker Toffee Bark (a.k.a., Graham Cracker Crack)

Say hello to marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack); your newest dessert BFF. It’s beautiful, addictive, and ridiculously easy to make. That’s my kind of dessert, and I’m guessing it’s yours too!

How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Now I’ll admit that I’m on a bit of a marbling kick lately. It all started with those DIY marbled pumpkins I created back in the Fall, and then I spotted Amy’s marble-dipped Oreos, and I knew I had to combine my love for marbling with my love … okay, obsession … with graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack.) I mean, have you tried it? Come on. Graham cracker toffee bark is LEGIT. It’s actually a variation on the classic toffee crack using saltine crackers, but here, the graham crackers replace saltines. Upgrade, if you ask me.

Graham cracker toffee bark is quick and simple to make and is totally addictive. Taste-wise, it’s sweet, buttery, caramel-y (admittedly, not a word), crunchy, and chewy all at the same time. The graham cracker gives it the perfect crunch, and when soaked up with your homemade brown sugar caramel toffee, it tastes amazing. You’ll be wondering why you haven’t been caramelizing your graham crackers all along. What a waste.

Adding melted white chocolate is just the icing on the cake … errr, cracker.

Plus, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, so it’s as good a time as any to make a decadently sweet, pretty in pink dessert.

How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

And don’t feel limited to just Valentine’s Day. This dessert is pretty much my secret weapon. If you’re looking for a recipe that will disappear at holiday parties, birthday parties, cookie exchanges, book club, school bake sales, it even makes the perfect little “thank you” gift, this is your dessert. It’s addictive. Addictive.

How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Marbled Graham Cracker Toffee Bark (a.k.a., Graham Cracker Crack)

INGREDIENTS

about 10 full-size honey graham crackers, or enough to cover pan
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
2 cups white chocolate chips or white melting chocolate
red or pink food coloring
toothpick

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9×13-inch pan with a non-stick silicone baking mat*, parchment paper or aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray. (*The baking mat you see in the pictures is a Silpat, and it’s my absolute favorite for baking.)
  2. Place graham crackers in pan in a single, flat layer so pan is completely covered with them. You will have to break some crackers to fill in the smaller spaces at the edges. It’s ok if there are slight gaps; it doesn’t have to be perfect. Set aside.
  3. In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan with high sides, add the butter, brown sugar, salt, and heat over medium-high heat to melt. Stir constantly until butter has melted.
  4. After butter has melted, allow mixture to boil for about 4 1/2 to 5 minutes at a medium-fast boil (lots of bubbles). Stir constantly to prevent burning. As you approach the 4 minute mark, mixture should seem thickened with the consistency of medium-thick caramel sauce. Don’t overcook.
  5. Evenly pour mixture over graham crackers.
  6. Bake for about 7 minutes, or until there’s bubbling around the edges.
  7. While baking, melt white chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl, removing from microwave and stirring every 30 seconds until melted.
  8. Remove pan from oven at the 7-minute mark. Pour melted chocolate evenly over the caramel-covered grahams. If needed, use a spatula to smooth it into an even, smooth layer of melted chocolate.
  9. Drop one drop of food coloring at a time, every few inches apart, on your melted chocolate layer, and using a toothpick, swirl the food coloring drop to create a “marbled” effect. Don’t worry if it doesn’t look perfect, just spread it around gently with a toothpick in swirls and it will look like marble. (I was amazed at how easy it was to get the “marbled” effect just by swirling my toothpick around.)
  10. Allow to cool for about 3 to 4 hours, or until chocolate has set and dessert is sliceable. Cut into squares once chocolate has completely hardened. Note: you can refrigerate this to speed up the cooling/firming process, but it will create a bit of condensation on the chocolate. This is merely a cosmetic issue, but obviously, you can avoid this by just allowing it to dry completely on your countertop. Your toffee bark will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 2 weeks, in the refrigerator for up to 1 month, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Recipe adapted via Averie Cooks

How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Some edges will break, but don’t fret, it’s all still delicious.

How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Any fun Valentine’s Day plans this year? If you find yourself baking up a batch of marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack), be sure to tag me on social media (@glitterinclexi) so I can live vicariously through all of your fun parties and desserts!

How to make marbled graham cracker toffee bark (a.k.a., graham cracker crack). It's kind of perfect for Valentine's Day, don't ya think? Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Psst … if you’re looking for Valentine’s Day inspiration, why not try the perfect sugar cookies for decorating (we used pink rock candy!), throw together a last-minute date night (from the comfort of your sofa!), DIY the cutest mess-free craft with your little ones, make strawberry cheesecake macarons, big and fluffy homemade raspberry marshmallowsOreo macaronsnutella-chocolate covered strawberries, or the best ever red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, or any one of these 14 favorite valentine’s day desserts?

Photos by Annie Watts Photography

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission. Thank you so much for clicking through and helping to support this little blog business of mine! Read more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here.


Lexi

How to Make Easy Overnight Oats (3 Ways!)

When it comes to resolutions, well, I’m just not very good at them. I like to give myself attainable goals. (i.e., 5 ways I plan to be happier in the new year.) And one of the ways I keep things attainable is by making sure they’re EASY. If I try to add something complicated to my already busy routine, it’s probably not going to stick. Something told me I was going to love overnight oats as I started seeing recipes pop up for them the last few months. I already love oatmeal and I’m always looking for healthy and simple breakfast options, because despite wanting to just guzzle nothing but coffee in the morning, breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. (My mom would be so proud!) But for someone reason, I was slow to try the overnight oats trend, and I’ve gotta say, I’m just bummed I missed out on all of that easy (and good-for-you) breakfast goodness!

Once you learn how to make easy overnight oats – and the recipe couldn’t be easier – it will hands-down become your new breakfast obsession.

How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Because I’m so smitten, I’m bringing you THREE, yes 3, of my favorite overnight oats recipes. The mix-ins are pretty endless, giving you plenty of variations on breakfast. Things like mini dark chocolate chips, crushed peanuts, nut butters, jellies and jams, cocoa powder, fresh fruit, seeds; all of these make awesome additions to your overnight oats.

How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

HOW TO MAKE OVERNIGHT OATS

SERVINGS: 1
PREP TIME: 8 minutes
COOK TIME: 4-5 hours, preferably overnight

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup Quaker Oats Standard Old Fashioned Oats
1/2 cup fat-free milk or nut milk like almond or cashew
2 tsp. honey

DIRECTIONS

Put the rolled oats into your container or jar (I love these jelly jars!) and then add the milk and honey. No need to stir before placing the mixture into the fridge overnight. Seal the container and place in the refrigerator overnight, or for at least 4-5 hours so that the oats absorb all of the liquid.

The next morning, all you got to do is grab the oats from fridge, stir, and enjoy. (Yep, it’s that simple.)

NOTE: You can either add in your flavors the night before, or make the simple version the night before and add your toppings the next morning. It’s totally a personal preference!

You can eat this cold right out of the fridge or you can heat it up in the microwave for 1-2 minutes and enjoy hot. (I actually love it cold!)

How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

The 3 ways I love eating my overnight oats are …

How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Strawberries and Nutella

Because sometimes you just need a little bit of chocolate (or Nutella.) I am strawberry fanatic, and the little drizzle of Nutella makes me feel like I’m eating a decadent dessert. SO good.

How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Blueberries and Pepitas

I love how nuts and seeds like pepitas (a.k.a., pumpkin seeds), crushed peanuts, almond slivers, walnuts, and sunflower seeds add that extra crunch to the overnight oats. Blueberries are lightly sweet and tart and pack plenty of fiber.

How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Apples, Almond Butter, and Cinnamon

This is one of my favorite combinations. I actually throw the diced apple chunks into the oats, milk, and honey the night before so that the apples soften a bit overnight as well. In the morning I just stir in a tablespoon of almond butter and top with cinnamon.

How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make easy overnight oats: three ways! (Your new healthy breakfast obsession.) Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Have you tried overnight oats? Are you hooked yet? What are your favorite mix-ins or toppings?

SHOP THE POST | CLICK LEFT & RIGHT ARROWS TO EXPLORE

 

Photos by Annie Watts Photography

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission. Thank you so much for clicking through and helping to support this little blog business of mine! Read more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here.


Lexi

Salted Pretzel Snickers Vanilla Caramel Corn + the Cutest DIY Game Day Mason Jars

This post has been sponsored by M&M’s, SNICKERS, STARBURST & SKITTLES. All thoughts and opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission. Thank you so much for clicking through and helping to support this little blog business of mine! Read more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here.

Growing up, my mom always celebrated football days with great food and drinks. Now that we’re a family of our own, I’m carrying on the tradition here in North Carolina. Finger foods and snacks you can easily scoop up handfuls of are top priority on game day, and this year, salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn (say that three times fast!) has become a top contender in our house.

How to make your new favorite game day salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn. This sweet and salty mixture is just TOO GOOD. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

The sweet and salty from the caramel and pretzels, hints of peanut and chocolate swirled into the mixture – that melt ever-so-slightly when coated with your hot caramel – and an underlying touch of vanilla; this salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn is just TOO GOOD.

I also love that the salted pretzels and Snickers chunks add a surprising and oh-so-good twist to an already loved classic.

Plus, caramel corn is perfect for a great big group because you can easily double or triple this recipe for a crowd.

How to make DIY game day painted mason jars. Click through for the details. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc How to make your new favorite game day salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn. This sweet and salty mixture is just TOO GOOD. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Now let’s talk about the actual process of making caramel corn: I know that the idea of making your own homemade caramel can seem intimidating, but this caramel recipe actually doesn’t require a candy thermometer, or any fancy tools for that matter. It’s actually so simple; in a saucepan, combine brown sugar, butter, and corn syrup, stir for a few minutes – just until it starts to slowly boil, and then you leave it be as it’s bubbling away on your stove for just five short minutes. Watching it bubble away is half the fun.

After five minutes, you just remove the pan from the heat and stir your baking soda and vanilla extract into the bubbling mixture and then a pinch of salt. It’s actually the baking soda that causes the key chemical reaction that fluffs the caramel. It’s like magic!

That golden fluffy caramel is then poured over your popcorn, pretzel, and chocolate mixture, it’s stirred and coated quickly, getting as much coated as possible, put in a low oven to dry out and set. Once it’s rested in the oven, you can top the mixture with another small sprinkle of salt, and then you have the most insanely good salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn.

Once your homemade caramel corn has dried and cooled it will be crisp and chewy and AMAZING.

How to make your new favorite game day salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn. This sweet and salty mixture is just TOO GOOD. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

Salted Pretzel Snickers Vanilla Caramel Corn

makes 14 cups popcorn

INGREDIENTS

about 12 cups popped popcorn
about 2 cups pretzel sticks or twists, broken
1 bag of Snickers minis (chopped)
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Optional: You can also add 1 cup of peanuts to your popcorn and pretzel mix before coating in caramel.

DIRECTIONS

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 250 degrees F, Grease a large (but shallow) roasting/cookie pan with butter or cooking spray. Set aside a large bowl and spray that with cooking spray as well. Add popcorn, pretzels, and chopped Snickers to the greased bowl and toss gently to mix.

In a 2 quart saucepan, combine brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, and salt Whisk over medium heat until it begins to boil. Allow to boil over medium heat (without stirring!!) for about 5 minutes. The mixture will be deep gold and bubbling.

Remove from the heat and immediately stir in the baking soda. The mixture will foam and froth. That’s ok. Keep stirring. Stir in the vanilla extract.

Quickly pour warm syrup over popcorn and pretzel mixture in your greased bowl. Use to large spoons to toss the mixture, coating all of the popcorn and pretzels in caramel. Work as quickly as you can. Transfer coated mixture onto your greased roasting/cookie pan.

Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Remove and toss. Return to the oven to bake for another 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and toss. Sprinkle with a little more salt; about a 1/2 teaspoon should do. Allow to cool before handling and packaging.

Caramel corn will last up to 4 days well wrapped at room temperature.

Recipe adapted via Joy the Baker

How to make DIY game day mason jars. Click through for the details. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

And in celebration of game day, I also put together a fun DIY! Say hello to our adorable new game day mason jars.

How to make DIY game day mason jars (and your new favorite salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn.) Click through for the how-to and recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

DIY Painted Game Day Mason Jars

To make the DIY game day mason jars I used large wide-mouth mason jarsPaint Pens, and Painter’s Tape, and created football-themed painted jars to fill with my salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn and candy like Skittles, Starburst, Peanut M&M’s, and SNICKERS NFL Minis. Told you I get excited about game day!

How to make your new favorite game day salted pretzel Snickers vanilla caramel corn. This sweet and salty mixture is just TOO GOOD. Click through for the recipe. | glitterinc.com | @glitterinc

You can find everything you’ll need to create your own Game Day Salted Pretzel Snickers Vanilla Caramel Corn and DIY Painted Game Day Mason Jars at your local Target. Target is definitely my go-to for the big game, from food to candy to party décor. Be sure to check out the Cartwheel app for deals on your favorite game day snacks!

Photos by Annie Watts Photography


Lexi