Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Balls

As the school year is approaching, I am stocking up on desk snacks. I LOVE food, and tend to graze throughout the day instead of solid meals. This doesn’t usually work for teachers, but thankfully I have an awesome schedule that will allow me to do just that throughout my school day. Along with Goldfish, Nutella, chocolate chip muffins, and popcorn, I wanted something with a bit more substance. I’ve made these chocolate peanut butter balls before, but these have the added benefit of whey protein. The particular kind that I use also has added energy- B12, caffeine etc.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups peanut butter

1 cup oats

1/4 cup mini chocolate chips

1/4 honey

1 1/2 10g scoops of protein- I use whey protein and use a flavor that goes with this recipe- vanilla or chocolate

  1. In a bowl, warm peanut butter and honey in the microwave until it is a bit runny so that it will mix easier.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine your protein, oats and mini chocolate chips
  3. Once the peanut butter and honey are warmed, pour into the other ingredients and fold in. If the mixture still seems dry and crumbly, add a bit more warmed peanut butter. It should form a nice ball and hold together well.
  4. Using a 1 inch ice cream scoop, or teaspoons, scoop out the mix onto wax paper.
  5. Allow to set for about an hour. Keep in an air tight container or separate into snack bags for a quick grab.

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This recipe made 34 small protein balls. 3 or 4 is just enough so they will make it a week! It took me less than 20 minutes to make!!!! I am going to keep a bag of these guys in my desk for a great afternoon pick me up! Happy snacking! 

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Creamy Crock Pot Tortellini Soup

One of the joys of being in a relationship is collecting and learning recipes. This happens to be one of my new favorites! Filling, easy, warm, and perfect for a cold winters day, this crock pot soup takes about 5 minutes to throw together. Seriously. There’s almost no prep time.

Ingredients:

1lb bag tortellini- cheese or meat

1 8oz pack of cream cheese

16 oz can/jar of tomato sauce

1 lb ground beef

1-2 garlic cloves

1/2 onion

Basil

1. Dump in the tortellini, tomato sauce, and thawed ground beef into the crock pot. Make sure the ground beef is broken up.

2. Add in the cream cheese and split it up a bit so that it is not in one giant block.

3. Mince/chop garlic and onion and add to the pot.

4. Add in a few fresh basil leaves or about a table spoon of dried

5. Set on high and stir occasionally for at least 3 hours. The tortellini should be soft, any meat should be cooked through, the cream cheese should be melted and incorporated.

This whole process could be sped up by doing it in a pot on the stove if needed, or put in a crock pot on low for the day. Serve with a good hearty bread and eat up! Possible additions or substitutions include: diced tomatoes, chicken or a ground meat like turkey or venison, meat tortellini, or meatballs.

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Simple Garlic Parm Potatoes

Potatoes are one of the most versatile foods out there. Seriously. Think about it. Oh, and they’re just generally awesome. I make these more tame potatoes to go with my Mmm Mmm Meatloaf, since the meatloaf already has loads of flavor. They’re quick, easy and sure to please.

Ingredients:

6-8 red potatoes really as many as you need

2 garlic cloves

1/2 cup chopped onion

Parmesan Cheese

Salt

Pepper

Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 350

1. Dirty peel and rinse potatoes

2. Chop potatoes into cubes, put in a pot of COLD water and begin to bring them up to a boil

3. Rough chop about 1/4 of an onion, you should get about 1/2 of a cup

4. Mince 2 cloves of garlic

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5. Add the garlic and onion to the pot

6. Boil the potatoes until you can cut them with the spoon and strain.

7. Drizzle olive oil into a baking dish and dump in potatoes

8. Crack fresh black pepper and salt on top. Grate or sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top-as much as you’d like. Give it a little drizzle of olive oil on top.

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9. Put dish in the oven uncovered. The potatoes should be pretty well cooked through, so putting them in the oven just finishes that process, melts the cheese and helps the flavors meld. I left mine in for about 20 minutes. 🙂

Serve nice and hot! Sour cream on the side is an option…but then it’s always an option in my life! 🙂

2 Ingredient 5 Minute Fudge

One day I will read a book again and post another book review…I’m still working on that since finishing the semester. So for now, it is recipes and planner things. This happens to fall under the latter of the two.

My mom makes awesome fudge. Melt in your mouth best stuff ever. But I was watching The Pioneer Woman on Food Network the other day and she made this two ingredient stuff. I don’t know how Ree Drummond came up with this recipe, and I don’t care. It is AWESOME! You can find the original recipe HERE.

Ingredients:

1 bag of chocolate chips- I used dark chocolate, the recipe says semi-sweet, I’m sure you could use peanut butter or combinations of them

1 14 oz can sweetened condense milk

Pre-line a container with foil, suran wrap or wax paper so that the fudge pops out once it has cooled. I would not use a dish any smaller than 9×9.

1. Set a pot on the stove with a metal bowl or use a double boiler and get it going

2. Dump in the bag of chips and can of sweetened condense milk- whisk or stir until all of the chips have melted and the chocolate and milk are combined

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3. Once the mixture is fully melted, mixed and smooth, dump the goodness into the lined dish.

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4. Pop in the fridge for at least 2 hours

5. Pull the lining with the fudge out of the dish and put on a cutting board. Cut the fudge using a serrated knife. You can replace the fudge back in the dish in the lining to reduce clean up.

Oh yeah. EAT IT! 🙂

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Possible additions- peanuts, walnuts, peppermints, orange zest, or anything else you like with chocolate!!!

Brown Sugar Cinnamon Muffins

I thoroughly enjoy cinnamon. I’ve been on a fall spice kick for quite some time now. Nothing beats cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves all mixed up into something. They are warm and spicey and homey and wonderful. This recipe doesn’t have all of those but it’s still pretty tastey! My house likes muffins. They are quick, easy and filling to eat and just as quick and easy to whip up. I was inspired to make these yummy guys for a quick gran and go breakfast!

Ingredients:

1 3/4 cup all purpose flour

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

1 egg

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup milk

1/3 cup of brown sugar

Topping:

3 tablespoons brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees.

1. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, egg, vanilla, brown sugar, cinnamon, oil and milk all together in a bowl. I used a hand whisk to mix it all together until it was smooth.

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2. In a seprate bowl mix the 3 tablespoons of brown sugar and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. This will be sprinkled on top.

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2. Line muffin tray with liners. Use a 1/4 to fill each liner.

3. Sprinkle each muffin with the brown sugar/cinnamon

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4. Bake for 15 minutes or until a knife poked into the center comes out clean. I love how they puffed up!

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They are definitely best if eaten warm! Store in an air tight container (if they happen to last that long)!

Makes 1 dozen. This is a very easily double-able recipe and is highly suggested!

Throw Together Hash

Obviously school has started again. My posting has once again become sporadic. I’m hoping to change that now that I am in more of a routine. The other day I had no classes and spent the day running errands with dad. I had promised mom I would make dinner, and I couldn’t take that back. I had pulled out ground beef that morning with no idea what I was going to do with it. We had finally had some green peppers come in, so I plucked one of them. We had an onion in the fridge, some left over breakfast sausage and potatoes. So, in true Anna fashion, I threw it all together.

Ingredients:

1lb lean ground beef- you can substitute turkey, pork or any combination of ground meat really

Breakfast sausage links- optional, we had some left over from our big Sunday breakfast

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 rough chopped onion

1 small green pepper- I would have used a red and yellow as well if we had had them!

3-4 medium sized red potatoes

Herbs/Seasonings of your choice

Sour Cream/Cheese as optional toppings

1. In a large pan, brown the ground beef with Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, basil, garlic powder, parsley on medium-high heat.

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2. While the beef is browning, chop your vegetables.

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3. Boil the potatoes until cooked through. They just won’t cook in the pan.

4. Throw in your chopped onion, pepper, and cut up breakfast sausage with the beef. Turn the stove down to medium-low, stir and cover. Check and stir every few minutes to keep from burning on the bottom.

5. After the potatoes are done cooking, strain and add to the pan. Mix in, and let them hang out with the rest of the hash for a few minutes to pick up the flavor.

Serve in a bowl with toppings like sour cream and cheese. This is obviously a super flexible dish. You could add lots of different veggies, eat it in a tortilla- what ever floats your boat. My dad was afraid of it, and then had 3 helpings. haha.

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