Spinach Artichoke Dip


  • 2 TBS butter
  • 2 TBS  flour
  • 2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 oz finely grated parmesan cheese (approx 1 cup)
  • 2 oz cream cheese
  • 12 oz Pictsweet frozen spinach, cooked as directed and drained
  • 1 can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • [optional]
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese grated


  1. Melt butter in saucepan, then add flour and to form a roux. Stir over medium-to-low heat for 1 minute, do not let turn brown.
  2. Slowly stir in cream, whisking continuously to prevent lumps.
  3. Add garlic salt
  4. Add grated Parmesan to saucepan and cook on low until fully melted.
  5. Add cream cheese and cook on low until fully melted *1
  6. Combine cream sauce with spinach and artichokes
  7. [Optional]
  8. Place in baking dish and sprinkle top with mozzarella cheese. Broil until cheese is bubbly and browned on edges.


*1 To make cream cheese easier to blend without lumps, microwave in a bowl for 60-90 seconds to soften. Mix a small amount of cream sauce into the bowl until smooth, then add to the pot with the rest of the sauce

Image by Rebecca Humann from Pixabay

Chocolate Chip (Secret Maple) Cookies

These cookies add real maple syrup to keep them nice and chewy even after a few days! I like to make a double batch, and use my 1½ inch cookie scoop to scoop the whole batch, then freeze them so I can pull them out and do a few freshly baked every time I want some… because who doesn’t think cookies are better hot out of the oven?


  • 1 cup unsalted butter melted and then cooled for at least 5 minutes
  • 1 ½ cups light brown sugar packed (300g)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar (100g)
  • 2 large eggs room temperature preferred
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup maple syrup (60ml)
  • 3 ¼ cups all purpose flour (415g)
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups chocolate chips


  1. In a large bowl, stir together melted butter and sugars.
  2. Add eggs, one at a time, stirring until combined.
  3. Stir in vanilla extract and maple syrup.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Gradually add flour mixture to wet ingredients, stirring until completely combined.
  6. Stir in chocolate chips.
  7. Cover bowl with clear wrap and allow to chill for at least 30 minutes
  8. While the dough is chilling, preheat oven to 350F (175C) and prepare cookie sheets by lining with parchment paper (if you don’t have parchment paper, you can bake directly on an ungreased cookie sheet).
  9. Scoop about 1 ½ Tablespoons of cookie dough. Place them at least 2 inches apart on prepared cookie sheet.
  10. Bake about 13 minutes (cookies will appear to be a bit underdone, but edges should be just beginning to turn golden brown).
  11. Allow cookies to cool completely on cookie sheet. If desired, gently press a few chocolate chips on top of the hot cookies.
  12. Keep unbaked cookie dough in fridge while waiting to put the next batch in the oven, and do not place cookie dough on a hot cookie sheet.


Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 223kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 119mg | Potassium: 12mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 500IU | Calcium: 10mg | Iron: 1.3mg

Recipe Source: Sugar Spun Run – The WORST Chocolate Chip Cookies by Sam
Image Credit: Jette’s personal photo

Wedding Cookies

This was technically my Nanny’s recipe, although it looks pretty much like every other Wedding Cookie recipe out there with one exception… all the sifting! It’s not strictly necessary, but I’ve found that in the cookie dough, the sifted ingredients make for a more tender, crumbly cookie that melts in your mouth! And in the topping, sifting the powdered sugar seems to help it stick to the cookie better. Your choice!

These cookies are great for dietary restrictions! They swap out well with many Gluten Free varieties of flour since they don’t rise. And I’ve even made them with Sugar Free powdered sugar. The only thing I haven’t tried yet is swapping out a vegan butter substitute… let me know if you try it!


  • 1 cups butter , softened
  • 2 cups sifted flour
  • ½ cup sifted powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cups chopped walnuts
  • extra sifted powdered sugar for rolling


  1. Cream butter and sugar together on high with electric mixer until light and fluffy.
  2. Add vanilla and flour,  mix well on low. Dough will be dry and crumbly.
  3. Fold in nuts.
  4. Scoop using 1½ Tablespoon-sized cookie scoop and place on ungreased baking sheet about an inch apart. Since these cookies don’t rise, they don’t need much space. Bake at 350 for 13  minutes.
  5. Roll in powdered sugar while still hot. OPTIONAL: Roll a second time once cool

Makes roughly 28 cookies using 1.5 TBS cookie scoop.

Image Credit: Haqmar from From Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository

Bourbon Chicken

Bourbon Chicken comes in so many varieties, it took me a while to find one I liked! I’m not fond of the versions that have a thick, sticky-sweet glaze. My favorite mall version is “grilled” bourbon chicken in a light, thin broth-like sauce. This recipes comes pretty close!

This is one of those dishes that started out with a recipe I found on the internet, but by the time I finished tweaking it to my liking it doesn’t really resemble the original at all! But I still linked to the inspiration recipe at the bottom of the page; fair is fair!


  • 4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 cup finely minced onion
  • 1 TBS fresh grated garlic (1 tsp garlic powder = 1 TBS fresh)
  • 1 tsp oil or butter
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh grated ginger (1 tsp powdered ginger = 1 TBS fresh)
  • 1/2 cup Jim Beam Bourbon Whiskey
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 1 tablespoons sesame oil



  1. Sauté onions and garlic in a saucepan with oil or butter until soft and caramelized.
  2. Mix all remaining marinade ingredients and simmer on med, stirring until sugar is dissolved and onions are soft.  Allow mixture to cool,  then pour through a sieve to remove solids and pour strained marinade over chicken pieces in a bowl or other container.
  3. Cover and refrigerate (stirring occasionally) for several hours (best overnight).

[Cook The Chicken]

  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. Remove chicken from marinade and place on large broiling pan (to contain juices that will render) in a single layer. Switch oven to Broil and cook chicken for 15-20 minutes until cooked through and browned/charred on edges.
  3. While chicken is cooking, pour remaining marinade into a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to med-low and simmer until chicken in oven is done. (This ensures the raw chicken juice gets cooked and the marinade will be safe to mix with chicken and eat.)
  4. Cut cooked chicken into bite sized pieces and add to pot with marinade. Keep warm until ready to serve


I cook the chicken separately in order to achieve the “grilled” consistency of my favorite restaurant version. However, to make the dish less labor intensive you could simply place the chicken AND marinade in a deep dish and bake at 350 for an hour.

Original Recipe Source: Key ingredients – Cajun Cafe’s Bourbon Chicken by Kimvess
Image Credit: Combo #2 at Bourbon Street Grill by mtan14, CC BY-SA 2.0

Banana Bread

I love Banana Bread, but only when it’s super moist and as sweet as a cake. After some of my own tweaking I found one that fits the bill, and added an optional streusel topping that makes it even yummier!


  • 2 small (2lb) loaf pans (8inX4X2.5) or 12 muffin cups
  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 4 large overripe bananas, mashed (approx 2 cups)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. banana extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup walnuts chopped
  • [For the (optional) Streusel Topping:]
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 4 tablespoons softened unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • (Double the streusel for muffins)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease small loaf pans (8inX4X2.5) and line with parchment.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter with sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and mix well.
  3. Whisk together the flour and salt; combine with the butter mixture.
  4. In a separate bowl, add 1 tsp. baking soda to the sour cream; stir well. The sour cream will react with the soda, making it light and foamy.
  5. Add in the bananas, vanilla and banana extracts, cinnamon, and walnuts; stir well.
  6. Add this mixture to the main mixture; mix well.
  7. Pour into prepared pans.
  8. [Optional: Add Streusel topping]
  9. Combine flour, butter and sugar until crumbly.
  10. Sprinkle on top of batter.
  11. Bake for 50-60 minutes, 35 -45 minutes for cupcakes (1/4 cup batter) and 25-30 minutes for mini muffins.
  12. Cool for 10 minutes and then turn the loaf out onto a rack.

Original Recipe Source: Reluctant Entertainer – Secret Walnut Banana Bread by Sandy
Image Credit: Freshly Baked by Ginny, CC BY-SA 2.0

One Pot Vegan Mushroom Stroganoff

This vegan version of Stroganoff is my go-to recipe whenever I entertain vegan guests! It’s super simple to make in a single pot, and is one of the few vegan recipes I can stand to eat, LOL. I usually go ahead and cook up some real beef on the side for anyone who wants to add it (namely me).


  • 1 small yellow onion, halved and sliced into strips
  • 16 ounces cremini mushrooms (Baby Bella), cut in chunky halves or quarters
  • 1 TBS cooking oil
  • 8 ounces dry pasta; about 4 cups
  • 2-3 cups imitation “beef-flavored” broth, BONE broth preferred for the extra flavor
  • 1 can of coconut CREAM 13.66os (not milk) or 1 cup vegan heavy cream substitute
  • 2 TBS Better Than Bouillon “No Beef” base (or similar beef bouillon substitute)
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 
  • [Optional]
  • vegan sour cream for garnish
  • 1 TBS corn starch if sauce is too thin
  • 1 lb vegan ground beef, precooked


  1. Sauté the Onion: add oil to a large pot over medium heat. Add in the sliced onions and salt and cook until translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes.
  2. Cook the Pasta: Start by adding only 2 cups of the beef-flavored broth (reserve the rest) to your pot. Add in the pasta, mushrooms, coconut cream, bouillon, and black pepper. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low and let simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure nothing sticks to the bottom of the pan. 
    *Add extra broth if needed to keep the sauce abundant. Different brands of pasta will absorb more or less liquid.
    **If sauce is thin, thicken with cornstarch slurry at the end.
    ***If you are using meat, add pre-cooked meat at the end.
  3. Serve: top with black pepper, and serve warm. 
  4. [Optional] Add a dollop of vegan Sour Cream on top to make the dish extra creamy

Original Recipe Credit: From My Bowl – One Pot Vegan Mushroom Stroganoff by Caitlin Shoemaker (tweaked to my preferences)
Image Credit: From My bowl by Caitlin Shoemaker