Healthy Favorites 2010:

Frozen  60 CALORIE Pudding Pops


– Unwrap foil from puddings.
– Place popsicle stick (or plastic spoon) in center. Place in freezer.
– Freeze for 8-10 hrs
– Remove puddings with butter knife carefully from plastic containers

ENJOY this tastey low-cal treat!



Fall Favorites:



Yield: Makes 2 loaves


  • 1 1/4  cups  chopped pecans, divided
  • 1/4  cup  butter, softened
  • 1  (8-oz.) package 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1  cup  sugar
  • 2  large eggs
  • 1 1/2  cups  whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2  cups  all-purpose flour
  • 1/2  teaspoon  baking powder
  • 1/2  teaspoon  baking soda
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 1  cup  buttermilk
  • 1 1/2  cups  mashed very ripe bananas (1 1/4 lb. unpeeled bananas, about 4 medium)
  • 1/2  teaspoon  vanilla extract


If you’ve never worked with whole wheat flour, accurate measuring is everything. Be sure to spoon the flour into a dry measuring cup (do not pack) rather than scooping the cup into the flour, and level it off with a straight edge. Expect a denser bread with this recipe. It won’t rise as much as traditional breads, and the texture will be very moist. (If you use frozen, thawed bananas, you might experience more wet patches throughout the bread.) We liked this version at the taste-testing table, but if you prefer a less dense bread with a little more rise and slightly lighter texture, then double the baking powder but leave the baking soda the same.

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Place 3/4 cup pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet, and bake 12 to 15 minutes or until toasted and fragrant, stirring after 6 minutes.

2. Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.

3. Combine whole wheat flour and next 4 ingredients; gradually add to butter mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in bananas, 3/4 cup toasted pecans, and vanilla. Spoon batter into 2 greased and floured 8- x 4-inch loaf pans. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup pecans.

4. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean and sides of bread pull away from pan, shielding with aluminum foil during last 15 minutes to prevent excessive browning, if necessary. Cool bread in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks. Let cool 30 minutes.

Note: To make ahead, proceed with recipe as directed through Step 4. Cool loaves completely, and tightly wrap with plastic wrap. Wrap again with aluminum foil. Freeze up to 1 month.

Toasted Coconut-Cream Cheese-Banana-Nut Bread: Reduce pecans to 1 cup. Prepare recipe as directed through Step 1, toasting all pecans. Remove and reserve 1/4 cup toasted pecans. Proceed as directed through Step 3, omitting pecans sprinkled over batter. Bake as directed. Meanwhile, cook 1/4 cup fat-free evaporated milk, 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar, 2 Tbsp. brown sugar, and 1 Tbsp. butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, 3 to 4 minutes or until bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut, reserved toasted pecans, and 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract. Remove bread from oven; immediately spread tops lightly with coconut mixture. Broil 5 1/2 inches from heat 2 to 3 minutes or until topping starts to lightly brown. Cool in pans on wire racks 20 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks; cool 30 minutes before slicing.

Cinnamon-Cream Cheese-Banana-Nut Bread: Prepare recipe as directed through Step 3, omitting pecans sprinkled over batter. Stir together 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar, 1/4 cup chopped pecans (not toasted), 1 1/2 tsp. all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 tsp. melted butter, and 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon. Lightly sprinkle mixture over batter in pans. Bake and cool as directed.


Pumkin Whoopie Pie Bites w/ Cream Cheese Frosting



  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 15 oz. can pure pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cans cream cheese frosting, or make your own


  1. Preheat oven to 375°.
  2. Combine oil, pumpkin, eggs, sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl.
  3. Add flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt and mix just until completely blended.
  4. Place rounded tablespoons on a cookie sheet about 1-2 inches apart.
  5. Bake at 375° for about 10 minutes until beginning to brown slightly.
  6. Transfer cookies to a rack and allow them to cool completely.
  7. Cover flat side of one cookie with frosting and top with another cookie.



11-3-2009 4-36-26 PM

4 ounces fine- quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), chopped
¾ stick (6 Tbsp.) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 Tbs instant espresso powder, dissolved in ½ Tbsp. boiling water
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
½ cup all-purpose flour
¼ tsp salt
½ cup walnuts, chopped (optional)

4 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 Tbs unsalted butter, softened
¾ cup powdered sugar, sifted
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp ground cinnamon

3 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened)
1 Tbs unsalted butter
¼ cup heavy whipping cream
2¼ tsp instant espresso powder, dissolved in ½ Tbsp. boiling water

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour an 8-inch square baking pan, knocking out excess flour. (Or line the pan with parchment, letting the parchment come up the sides and hang over- then spray the parchment.- this is recommended as it’s easier to get the brownies out of the pan cleanly.)

2. In a heavy 1½-quart saucepan, melt chocolate and butter with espresso mixture over low heat, stirring, until smooth and remove pan from heat. Cool mixture to lukewarm and whisk in sugar and vanilla. Add eggs, whisking well until mixture is glossy and smooth. Stir in flour and salt until just combined and stir in walnuts (if using).

3. Spread batter evenly in pan and bake in middle of oven 22 to 25 minutes, or until a tester comes out with crumbs adhering to it. Cool brownie layer completely in pan on a rack.

4. Make cream cheese layer: In a bowl with an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar, vanilla and cinnamon and beat until combined well. Spread frosting evenly over brownie layer. Chill brownies 1 hour, or until frosting is firm.

5. Make glaze: In a large pyrex measuring cup or glass bowl, place chocolate, butter, cream and espresso mixture. Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring, until melted and smooth. If glaze is steaming hot, let cool a little bit. Pour glaze carefully over cream cheese layer.

6. Chill brownies, covered, until cold (at least 3 hours).

7. If you used parchment, simply lift the brownies out of the pan by holding the sides of the parchment. Place on a cutting board and gently peel off the parchment. With a long, thin knife, cut chilled brownies into 24 squares. Serve brownies cold or at room temperature. These brownies will keep, covered and chilled, in one layer, for 5 days.


THE BEST Cinamon Rolls



  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 2-1/2 cups lukewarm water (105 degree F to 115 degree F)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 package (2-layer-size) white cake mix
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup cooking oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 recipe Powdered Sugar Icing (see recipe below)


1. For dough, in a large mixing bowl, stir the yeast into 1/2 cup of the warm water; add the 1 teaspoon sugar. Let the mixture stand for about 5 minutes or until the mixture is foamy.

2. Stir the cake mix, 1 cup of the flour, the egg, cooking oil, salt, and the remaining water into yeast mixture. Beat with an electric mixer on high speed for 3 minutes, scraping sides of bowl constantly. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the remaining flour to form a soft dough. (Dough will be sticky.)

3. Cover and let rise about 1 hour or until doubled.

4. Lightly grease two 13x9x2-inch baking pans. Set aside. Stir dough down. Cover and let rise again until doubled (about 1 hour). Stir dough again. Divide in half. Turn 1 portion of the dough out onto a well-floured surface. Turn to coat lightly with flour. Roll the dough into a 12×8-inch rectangle. Brush with half of the melted butter.

5. For filling, in a small mixing bowl, combine the 1 cup sugar and the cinnamon. Sprinkle half of the filling over dough. Roll up, jelly-roll style, starting from one of the long sides. Pinch edge to seal.

6. Cut crosswise into 12 pieces. Arrange, cut sides down, in a prepared pan. Repeat with the remaining dough, remaining butter and remaining filling. Cover loosely; let the dough rise in a warm place until nearly doubled (about 45 minutes).

7. Uncover pans. Place a baking sheet under each of the pans. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly brown and rolls sound hollow when lightly tapped.

8. Invert onto serving plates. Drizzle Powdered Sugar Icing over warm rolls. Serve warm. Makes 24 rolls.

Powdered Sugar Icing: In a medium mixing bowl, stir together 4 cups sifted powdered sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Stir in enough milk (about 3 tablespoons) to make a drizzling consistency.

thanks to MidwestLiving

Decadent Sugar Roasted Pecans



  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 pound pecan halves
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C). Grease one baking sheet.
  2. In a mixing bowl, whip together the egg white and water until frothy. In a separate bowl, mix together sugar, salt, and cinnamon.
  3. Add pecans to egg whites, stir to coat the nuts evenly. Remove the nuts, and toss them in the sugar mixture until coated. Spread the nuts out on the prepared baking sheet.
  4. Bake at 250 degrees F (120 degrees C) for 1 hour. Stir every 15 minutes.


Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle


  • 2 (14-ounce) packages gingerbread mix
  • 1 (5.1-ounce) box cook-and-serve vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 (30-ounce) can pumpkin pie filling
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 teaspoon ground cardamom or cinnamon
  • 1 (12-ounce) container frozen whipped topping
  • 1/2 cup gingersnaps, optional


Bake the gingerbread according to the package directions; cool completely. Meanwhile, prepare the pudding and set aside to cool. Stir the pumpkin pie filling, sugar, and cardamom into the pudding. Crumble 1 batch of gingerbread into the bottom of a large, pretty bowl. Pour 1/2 of the pudding mixture over the gingerbread, then add a layer of whipped topping. Repeat with the remaining gingerbread, pudding, and whipped topping. Sprinkle of the top with crushed gingersnaps, if desired. Refrigerate overnight. Trifle can be layered in a punch bowl.


Pumkin Chocolate Cheesecake Pie



  • 1 recipe Deep Dish Pie Pastry, below
  • 12 oz. cream cheese, softened (1-1/2 8-oz. pkgs.)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped semisweet chocolate or miniature chocolate pieces
  • 1 15-oz. can pumpkin
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup half-and-half or light cream
  •  Chopped chocolate (optional)


1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Prepare and roll out Deep Dish Pie Pastry. Transfer pastry to a 9-1/2- to 10-inch deep-dish pie plate. Trim crust edge 1/2-inch beyond pie plate. Flute edge high. Line pastry with double thickness of foil. Bake 8 minutes. Remove foil; bake 6 minutes more or until golden. Cool on wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees F.

2. In medium mixing bowl combine cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1 egg; beat on low speed until smooth. Spread cream cheese mixture in cooled pastry shell. Sprinkle with chopped chocolate.

3. In bowl combine pumpkin, brown sugar, and spice. Stir in 4 eggs. Gradually stir in half-and-half. Slowly pour pumpkin mixture on chocolate layer. To prevent overbrowning, cover pie edge with foil.

4. Bake 60 to 65 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Remove foil. Cool on wire rack. Cover and refrigerate within 2 hour. Top with chopped chocolate.

Deep Dish Pie Pastry:In medium bowl, stir together 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Using pastry blender or two knives cut in 6 tablespoons shortening until pieces are pea-size. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon cold water over part of flour mixture; gently toss with fork. Push moistened dough to side of bowl. Repeat, using 1 tablespoon water at a time, until all flour is moistened (5 to 6 tablespoons total). Form into ball. On lightly floured surface, flatten dough. Roll pastry from center to edge into 13-inch circle. Serves 8.

Better Homes & Gardens




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