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kacy meinecke



Celebrate Spring with a Batch of Carrot Cake Muffins

Let’s be honest, muffins are just breakfast-approved cupcakes. But why does dessert get to have all of the fun? There’s really not an answer so we made one up in the form of a wholesome carrot cake muffin for breakfast. Trust us on this one.

I don’t even like carrot cake, and it was all I good do to eat just one of these. So, maybe I do, in fact, like carrot cake?

carrot cake muffins

With spring’s arrival, it’s hard not to lunge head-first in to the freshest produce around. Carrots are an early arrival, ready for picking in April and throughout the summer months. Whether brunching, celebrating Easter, Mother’s Day, or just looking for a better weekday breakfast, these muffins are a bright addition to your menu!

carrot cake pancake ingredients
This recipe has all the components of a good muffin recipe and a good cupcake recipe and you get to have it at breakfast without any awkward self-doubt. Wholesome carrots, sweet pineapple, and warm vanilla combine with whole wheat flour to make a pretty darn healthy muffin.
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This Pile of Trashcan Nachos is Not Yo Average Plate of Melty Cheese and Chips

My husband has the completely normal sweet tooth. I, on the otherhand, have what he lovingly refers to as a grease tooth. Keep your cookies and candies, I’ll take the chips, and fries, and the cheese. The hotter and meltier on that cheese, the better, please!

One of my favorite guiltiest indulgences is nachos. This is not the plate of tortilla chips and cheddar cheese nuked until crispy of our youth. These are grown up nachos. These are my trashcan nachos, and they come piled high with all the meat, beans, peppers, and, of course, cheese.

trashcan nachos avocado

These are light, gooey, crispy nachos. These are big and bad on flavor like any nacho worth its weight in salsa should be, but they are leaner and lighter.

Fully loaded, these nachos don’t skimp. I start with blue corn tortilla chips. These tend to be sturdier and don’t get mushy when they cook (read: I don’t need as many). I get an organic variety that’s unsalted.

turkey nachos

Then, we fill ‘em with fiber. Fresh bell peppers, juicy Roma tomatoes, and creamy black beans get tossed across the chips. Each bite is more filling than a chip and cheese, plus, it’s one of those easy, sneaky ways to add some extra veggies to my day.

We really trim the fat by using ground turkey instead of ground beef. I season the turkey the same as I would any other taco meat – green chilis, sauteed onions, cumin, coriander, ancho chili powder. You can season yours however you like!
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Spice Up Fall with a Chicken Taco Soup Recipe That’s Simple and Satisfying

It is the crunchy season, aka fall, and that means it’s soup and stew season, too. Woohoo!

I love fall. Like lovvvve fall.

Not such a fan of the soups though. I’m more of a stew and chili kind of girl, if I have to be. But a few years ago, I found a compromise in my Crock Pot and it has become my family’s single most favorite meal of fall and winter.

I used simple, healthy Mexican ingredients — a food genre I swear I could eat every single day — stirred them up, and started filling bowls with Taco Soup.

chicken tortilla soup

It’s one of those slow cooker meals that fills the house with intoxicating smells for hours until you’re so hungry you’ll risk third degree burns on your tongue just to get that first taste!
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Twice Baked Shepherd’s Pies Makeover a Favorite Winter Classic with Baked Potatoes

New on our “cozy food” seasonal menu rotation is a made-over classic. It’s the Shepherd’s Pie like you’ve never tried it before. It’s usually not my thing – loaded with lamb and mashed potatoes – two foods I don’t particularly care for. But I’ve got a pretty big thing for the baked potato.

I made a Shepherd’s Pie that’s a little leaner, bigger on flavor, and maybe even cuter.

Call them miniature. Call them single-serve. Call them dinner! These Twice-Baked Shepherd’s Pies are bound to be a staple of your winter menu.

twice baked potato shepherd's pie

I skipped the mashed potatoes because, like I said, I’m a little un-American and truly can’t stand the stuff. But, a baked potato, much less one that’s been baked twice, I’m all over that.

Then I cut the lamb and even skipped over the beef and went right to ground Italian turkey sausage – super lean with a great taste that fits right in here.
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Score a Win with Buffalo Chicken Pasta Salad at Your Next Football Tailgate

Nothing is better than tailgating season. And nothing is better than buffalo-flavored anything at a tailgate. Which would then suggest that this Buffalo Chicken Pasta Salad is the best food of tailgate season. At least that’s how our math works.

It’s that big, bold buffalo flavor that you love, in a less fatty serving.

We’ve taken everything you love about a big platter of wings, blue cheese dip, and fresh veggie sticks and tossed it all with whole grain penne pasta. Think of it as the buffalo chicken platter deconstructed.

buffalo chicken pasta ingredients

Frank’s Red Hot is kind of the definitive sauce for buffalo-flavored dishes, but we also like the new buffalo flavor from Tabasco. Any hot sauce will work, and you can use as little or as much as your fierce taste buds can handle.

Loaded with crisp, fresh veggies, you aren’t as likely to pass these over when they are tossed with the pasta. And rather than an endless bowl of blue cheese dip, which can run more than 500 calories alone, we give you a generous 1/2-cup shake of the crumbles. All the flavor for around 50 calories!
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