peppermint oreo balls

To make this holiday season even sweeter, Oreo is releasing a Peppermint flavor, available for a limited time at select retailers. I’m obsessed with mint & chocolate. I make s’mores with peppermint patties. (Try it. You can thank me later.)  I wait for Peppermint Mochas the way others wait for Pumpkin Spice Lattes.  So Peppermint OREOS??? Sign. Me. Up.

They did not disappoint. Oh no, they did not.

To try them out, we made these INCREDIBLE Oreo cookie balls!! They were so easy and fun. Gracie and I made these together and they were super simple. It probably took us 15 minutes total prep time (not including time to chill the balls after we dipped them in chocolate).

I served these at our housewarming party on Saturday. I set them out on the buffet table and snapped a picture of the table.

fall buffet tableSomeone else arrived and I went to welcome them in. I came back to take a nice close-up picture of my pretty Peppermint Oreo Balls. I came back and they were gone. G-O-N-E. Every single one of my adorable Oreo Balls were GONE.

They were obviously very yummy and a big hit.

Anyway, here is the recipe, sans finished picture of my gorgeous Peppermint Oreo Balls because my extended family cannot show self control around Oreos apparently. Humph.

PEPPERMINT OREO BALLS

  • 1 pkg (8 oz) brick cream cheese, softened
  • 1 pkg (15.25 oz) OREO Cookies with Peppermint Creme, finally crushed
  • 4 pkg (4oz each) semi-sweet baking chocolate, melted
  • 8 starlight mints, coarsely crushed (or use candy canes), red nonpareils, or decoration of your choice!
Instructions:
1. Mix cream cheese and cookie crumbs until well blended.
peppermint oreo ball  easy holiday dessert2. Shape into 48 (1-inch) balls. (Um… we only made about 38. Because we ate some cookies. Ahem.) Freeze 10 min.
3. Dip balls in melted chocolate; place in single layer in shallow waxed paper-lined pan. Sprinkle with decorations, if desired.
easy holiday dessert4. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm. Store in tightly covered container in refrigerator.
A few tips:
To easily coat cookie balls with the melted chocolate, add balls in batches to bowl of melted chocolate. Use 2 forks to roll them until evenly coated. Remove balls with forks, letting excess chocolate drip back into bowl. Place on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper.
Do not leave them unattended, they WILL disappear!!!

disclosure: this was a sponsored campaign from OREO. 

 

almond joy baked oatmeal

With our schedules these days, I need quick, easy breakfast ideas.

So I started making baked granola in muffin cups – they are super easy and freeze really well, so we can make a bunch and have them ready when we need them.  And you can make a lot of varieties, so everyone get’s their favorite. Some of the kids like peanut butter & chocolate in theirs. My son loves raisins. And my favorite – Almond Joy Baked Oatmeal.

Almond Joy Baked Oatmeal

 

baked oatmealALMOND JOY BAKED OATMEAL (makes 12)

1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup unsweetened applesause
1/2 of a mashed banana
1/4 cup honey
2 1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup flax seed meal
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/3 cup whole milk
mix-ins (Add whatever tickles your fancy, but here’s my fav!)
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix eggs, vanilla, applesauce, banana and honey well. Mix in oats, flax meal,  salt and baking powder. Slowly mix in milk. (It will be a little runny – but that’s ok!)  Fold in coconut, almonds and chocolate chips.
2. Line muffin tin with liners, and scoop about 1/4 cup into each cup. (I add a few extra chocolate chips, because can you really have too many?)
3. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.
4. If desired, freeze for another day. (Just defrost in the fridge overnight for when you want them.) Before eating, reheat in the microwave for 20-30 seconds.

lactose free summer is still yummy with LACTAID

Its summer! Yipee!! One of the best parts of a hot summer day is getting a ice cream cone. But now that I can no longer digest dairy, this is now one of my sad parts of summer. I go with my kids to the ice cream shop and order…. a drink. Boo. It stinks!

Thank goodness for LACTAID! It comes to my rescue every summer. Food Network chef Melissa d’Arabian was on the Today Show recently sharing some of her favorite recipes using LACTAID.

 

I’ve been using LACTAID milk in most of my usual recipes, like pancakes or as a cream base for pasta, and I’ve had terrific results. Right now, we’re in Greece with NO LACTAID and I’m missing it. Let me tell you, there is not much sadder than going to a gelato store and saying, “Nothing for me, thanks.” When all you want to do is to DIVE IN to that yumminess! I’d love some, but even with my LACTAID tablets, I cannot handle that creamy yummy gelato. BUT as soon as we unpack in our new house and I actually find our ice cream maker (which will probably be in the kid’s room labeled “Christmas Ornaments” or something obvious, right?) I will be making this recipe for lactose-free ice cream from Lactaid! I’m so excited!!! Homemade ice cream for me this summer!!!!

lactaid ice cream

DOUBLE-BERRY ICE CREAM
1 cup sugar
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
4 cups LACTAID® Whole Milk
3 eggs, beaten
1 (12 ounce) package frozen lightly sweetened red raspberries
1 (10 ounce) package frozen strawberries in syrup
Preparation

In a large saucepan combine sugar and gelatin. Stir in LACTAID® Whole Milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture just starts to boil. Remove from heat. Whisk about 1 cup of the hot mixture into beaten eggs; return all to saucepan. Cook and stir for 1 to 2 minutes or until mixture coats a metal spoon (temperature will be about 175 to 180 degrees F). Do not boil. Stir in raspberries and strawberries. Cover and chill 4 hours or overnight until completely chilled. (Mixture will be very thick after chilling.)
Transfer the mixture to a 4- or 5-quart ice-cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s directions. Makes about 2 quarts.
NOTES
Homemade ice cream tastes better and melts more slowly if it is ripened before serving. To ripen ice cream in a traditional-style ice-cream freezer, after churning, remove the lid and dasher. Cover the top of the freezer can with waxed paper or foil. Plug the hole in the lid with a small piece of cloth and replace the lid. Pack the outer freezer bucket with enough ice and rock salt to cover the top of the freezer can, using 4 cups ice to 1 cup salt. Ripen about 4 hours.

 

disclosure: this is part of a sponsored campaign with lactaid and the motherhood. all opinions are my own.

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