Peanut Butter Chocolate Date Bars

Peanut Butter Chocolate Date Bars 🥜🍫 My favorite way to prepare for labor 😂 I don’t remember where I heard that eating dates daily is supposed to make labor go smoother but I’m willing to try anything 😁 and both time went well with my first two and I ate dates on the regular during the final month. Even not preparing for labor, these things are delicious 😋 My kids love them too!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Date Bars
– 1 cup of pitted dates
– 1/3 cup peanut butter
– 1 Tbs chia seeds
– 2/3 cup old fashioned oats
– 1/4 cup melted dark chocolate for drizzling
Place dates, peanut butter, chia seeds, and oats into a food processor. Pulse until mixture start to ball when squished together. Press mixture into a 9×13 pan until bottom is evenly covered. Place in fridge until slightly hardened.
Remove pan and cut into bars. It should make about 12 bars. Remove from the pan and drizzle tops with melted chocolate. Store in the freezer in an air tight container!

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Enchilada Casserole

One of my most loved meals from my childhood was my moms enchiladas ☺️ It’s still a meal I love to have especially when I’m sleep deprived and adjusting to life with a newborn. It’s my kinda comfort food! I turned it into a casserole so that I could make these little individual servings with the @soupercubesfreezer tray for myself – But you can also make a large casserole of it! ❄️ #freezerreadyfriday

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Enchilada Casserole
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium white onion, peeled & diced
1 medium red bell pepper, cored & diced
1 medium yellow bell pepper, cored & diced
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chiles
1 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed & drained
1 (15 ounce) cans pinto beans, rinsed & drained
1 (8 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 lb shredded jackfruit or cooked chicken
3 cups red enchilada sauce, homemade or store-bought ( nothing beats my moms but you’ll have to ask her for the recipe 😉 )
12 corn tortillas, cut in half
3 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese
toppings: chopped fresh cilantro, sour cream, diced red onion, or avocado

Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray a 9×13-inch baking dish with cooking spray if using casserole dish and set aside.
Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper and sauté until softened. Stir in the diced green chiles, beans, corn, chicken and 2 cups of enchilada sauce, and stir. Remove from heat and set aside.
Pour about 1/2 cup of the enchilada sauce in the baking dish ( or divide between @soupercubes ) and spread evenly on the bottom. Top with a layer of about tortilla halves so the entire dish is covered. Top evenly with 1/3 of the filling mixture, followed by 1/3 of the cheese. Repeat with another layer of tortillas, chicken mixture, and cheese. Finish with a layer of tortillas, chicken mixture, the remaining 1/2 cup of enchilada sauce, and cheese.
Bake uncovered for 30 min, remove from the oven and serve warm, or let cool completely if planning to freeze. Top with a lid or cover tightly with foil and plastic wrap and place in the freezer.
When ready to serve, let thaw in fridge for 24 hours. Bake in oven 350°F for 45 minutes or until warmed through. Add your favorite toppings and enjoy!

Easy Freezer Lasagna

It’s #freezerreadyfriday! And this week features a classic, lasagna ❤️ It’s a family favorite that tastes so good and smells really yummy when it’s cooking 😍 and it’s totally something that I think tastes even better the second day!

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Easy Lasagna
1 box oven ready lasagna noodles ( can you traditional, just will need to boil before assembling )
1 jar spaghetti sauce
16 oz ricotta cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp Italian seasoning
Preheat oven to 375°F. Mix together ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan, garlic powder, and Italian seasoning in a bowl. Set aside.
Pour one quarter of the spaghetti sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Spread into an even layer. Next, layer noodles on top of sauce making sure to overlap the noodles slightly. Pour a quarter more of the sauce and spread evenly on top of the noodles.
Spread half of the cheese mixture of top of the sauce covered noodles. Layer another set of noodles on top.
Pour another quarter of the spaghetti sauce on top of the noodles and repeat layering cheese, followed by noodles. Pour remaining sauce on top of the noodles and evenly covered the top. Sprinkle with additional cheese if desired. Bake covered for 25 minutes. Remove cover and bake additional 5 minutes. Let cool completely before freezing. Cover tightly before placing in the freezer. To warm, remove from freezer and place into refrigerator for 24 hours to thaw. Bake covered at 375°F for 60 minutes or until warmed through.

Freezer Oatmeal cups

With two months to go, it’s time to start prepping #freezermeals for when baby arrives! 👶🏻 I won’t lie, I thinks we end up eating half the stash before baby is even born 😆 but it’s always worth the prep! I know most people think of dinner for freezer meals but breakfast is an important one in our house too. I can’t start my day without it and my kids are always ravenous in the morning!

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These may look like muffins but it’s actually oatmeal! Did you know you can freeze oatmeal? It’s such a yummy and simple breakfast and you can make any flavor you like. And if you’re a nursing mama, oatmeal and flaxseed are supposed to be good for milk 🍼production!

PB&J Frozen Oatmeal
– Use whatever oats you like and make enough for 6 servings according to package directions
– 2 Tbs ground flaxseed
– 2 tsp vanilla extract
– 1/4 cup maple syrup OR 1 while banana, mashed to sweeten
– 2 tsp ground cinnamon
– 1/4 cup @crazyrichardspb 🥜 peanut butter
– Jam ( we used @smuckersbrandstrawberry sweetened with honey ) to dollop on top
– Fresh berries to top 🍓( optional )
Make oatmeal according to package directions. Let cool slightly. Scoop oatmeal into silicone baking cups ( or a lightly greased muffin tin ) almost to the top. I use an ice cream scoop to make it easier! Place a dollop if Jam on top of each oatmeal cup and sprinkle with berries. Place into the freezer and freeze until hard. Pop the oatmeal out of the cups and place into a freezer bag.

When reheating, I use 2 cups per adult serving and 1 for my kids. Add a splash of milk and microwave until warm. It makes about 20 cups so double it if you’re wanting to have plenty on hand!

I’ll be using the hashtag #freezerreadyfridayif you want to follow along and see all of the things I make! And if you make any, use it so I can see your yummy creations!

French Toast Fingers

French Toast Fingers 💕 The perfect way to celebrate Valentine’s Day and the best part is, you can make them in advance and freeze them so you’re ready ( and maybe this way you’ll get breakfast in bed?! 🛌 )

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French Toast Fingers
2-3 slices of sandwich bread
3 eggs, beaten
1 Tbs milk
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup frozen berries of choice, thawed ( we did half raspberries, half strawberries )
Maple syrup to top ( optional )
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease the bottom of a loaf pan. Place a single layer of sandwich bread snug in the bottom of the pan. Mix together eggs, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon. Pour mixture on top of bread.

Dollop cream cheese on top of bread and egg mixture. Place thawed berries around the cream cheese. Bake for 25 minutes or until set. Let cool for 5 minutes. Drizzle with maple syrup and slice into strips. If not enjoying right away, place covered in the fridge or place in an airtight container in the freezer. Warm in the microwave when ready to serve.

“In My Heart” Story Time Snack

I am so excited to be teaming up with my friend Janey at @darlingreaders 📚 for a very lovable, heart filled 💕 edition of #storytimesnacks. In My Heart, by Jo Witek and illustrated by Christine Roussey is a wonderful exploration of all of the feelings of the heart. This book is the perfect introduction to vocabulary specific to feelings and emotion. If you’re looking for wonderful early literacy tips, go give Janey a follow ( and also how darling is it that we both have darling in our names ☺️ AND we’re both actually photographers 📷 ) It’s a book filled with colorful hearts and feelings and perfect for Valentine’s Day or really any day of the year!

I can’t think of anything that says, I love you, more than a colorful, healthy, heart-shaped snack 🍍🥑🍉🍈 We simply used cookie cutters to make the heart shapes and skewered them only a coffee stir stick ( you could also use a popsicle stick! )

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What’s your favorite book for Valentine’s Day? ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜

Soft Pretzels & Cheese

It’s snack day!!! I mean… game day 🏈 I couldn’t even tell you who is playing but I actually enjoying watching sports, just not professional teams. I’m a big fan of college teams 🏀 So today is more just a reason to have yummy snacks and hang out for me! I decided to make up a batch of @altonbrown soft pretzels and they are so dang good! And made a little rosemary cheddar cheese sauce for dipping 🧀 because cheese sauce makes me happy 😁

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2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, chopped fine
Salt and pepper, to taste

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and whisk in flour. Slowly pour in the milk and whisk until it thickens. Stir in shredded cheese and stir until cheese is melted and smooth. Mix in fresh rosemary and season with salt and pepper, to taste.