Sunday, September 27, 2009

Chili Dip

As we ease into fall and football season I thought I would share one of my favorites and the most simple recipe I know.

Chili Dip
  • 1 can of Hormel Chili-no beans
  • 1 package of Philly Cream Cheese
  • Bag of Scoops or Fritos 

Microwave Cream Cheese and Chili in a micro safe bowl for 3 minutes. Stir. Microwave in 1 minute increments until cream cheese is soft stirring in between. Serve.

*Substitution: for non-cream cheese lovers Velveeta works great also. Just cube it up. Click Here for recipe*

Different variations:
Cheesy Chili Dip
Chili Ole Dip

Friday, September 18, 2009

Back to School: Thinking Outside the lunch box....

I found some great back to school lunch ideas and tips at , thought I'd share!

School Lunches: Thinking Outside the Lunch Box

By:   Allrecipes Staff
If your kids think a homemade school lunch is boredom in a box, it's time to start treating it like a daily picnic.
Here's the challenge: you want to provide nourishing lunches and the kids would rather play than eat. Or worse, they trade your lovingly-packed meal for a sugary cupcake. What's a parent to do?

Get the Kids Involved

  • Let the kids play with their food: dipping fruit, vegetables, crackers, or bread in sauces; assembling bite-size cheese and cracker sandwiches; or making tiny fruit kabobs on toothpicks.
  • Keep fruits and vegetables small and easy to eat: grapes, cherries, small plums, blueberries, melon cubes, baby carrots, cucumber slices, bell pepper strips and lightly steamed or blanched broccoli florets.
  • Get them involved with planning and making lunches because they're more likely to eat it if they helped pack it. After all, you won't be there to lay down the "three more bites before you can leave the table" law.

Variety is the Spice of Lunch

  • Include enough range to keep your kids from getting bored, but don't be surprised if they settle on a few favorites and request them week after week. Kids like to have a few familiar, comforting things nearby when they are away from home.
  • Give them some choices from each food group, and allow them to mix and match for a nutritionally balanced lunch.
  • Beyond sliced bread, try crackers, pita bread, naan, corn bread, English muffins, tortillas, baked tortilla chips, mini bagels, or lettuce wraps.
  • For protein, there's good ol' peanut butter, but the kids might also enjoy hummus, bean dip, sliced cheese, yogurt, cold cuts, tuna salad, pasta salad, egg salad, or a thermos full of chili.
  • When serving tuna, egg, chicken, or pasta salad, mix in shredded carrots, apples, zucchini, bell peppers, raisins, nuts--anything to add nutrition and fiber without adding lots of empty calories.

Lunch Tips

  • About food safety: lightweight, freezable cold packs or frozen juice boxes enable you to send the kids to school with perishables such as pasta salad, egg salad, meat sandwiches, yogurt, tuna, etc.
  • Get your kids into the habit of washing their hands before eating. Include antibacterial hand wipes if that's what it takes.
  • Make lunches the night before to ease the morning rush out the door.
  • Reusable lunchboxes are earth-friendly and save the expense of brown bags, but be sure to wash them out frequently.
  • You've heard this one before, but a little note from you tucked into a lunch once in a while is a comfort. Keep notes small enough so kids don't have to haul out a long, loving letter from home in front of the rest of the lunchroom.
  • When you pack nutritious lunches you know your kids will love, you might even feel okay about slipping a cookie or a brownie into the bag!
Great Recipes form Allrecipes:

Awesome Turkey Sandwich
  • 2 slices whole wheat bread, toasted (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise(light)
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon-style prepared mustard
  • 3 slices smoked turkey breast
  • 2 tablespoons guacamole
  • 1/2 cup mixed salad greens
  • 1/4 cup bean sprouts
  • 1/4 avocado - peeled, pitted and sliced
  • 3 ounces Colby-Monterey Jack cheese, sliced
  • 2 slices tomato
Spread mayonnaise on one slice of toast, then spread mustard on the other. Arrange the sliced turkey on one side. Spread guacamole over the turkey. Pile on the salad greens, bean sprouts, avocado and cheese. Finish with tomato slices, then place the remaining slice of toast on top.

Another for pickle lovers like my kids:
Pickle Rolls 
SUBMITTED BY: Michelle Bovenkamp

  • 1 (32 ounce) jar dill pickles
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 pound sliced ham
  • 10 (6 inch) flour tortillas
 Spread cream cheese on one side of a tortilla. Place a slice or two of ham over this. Spread another layer of cream cheese over the ham. Roll a pickle up in the tortilla and slice the roll into finger food-sized pieces. Refrigerate the rolls if you aren't serving them immediately.
 *Alternately in my family sometimes we will replace bologna(usually the light all beef kind) instead of ham.*

For "Going Green" lunch container ideas please visit my Tupperware HomePage

Pumpkin Spice Cake

Cook it in the Stack Cooker, 8 1/4 Oval or Vent N Serve Large Deep(Tupperware)
You can spray container with Pam or other cooking spray

1 box Spice Cake Mix
1 Reg Can Pumpkin
3 Eggs
1/4 Cup Water (batter is stiff....add slowly as needed)
1 jar Carmel Ice Cream Topping
1  12oz Container Cool Whip
2 Tbsp Cinnamon Vanilla Seasoning(optional)

Cook cake 8 minutes....check if done....remove from microwave...
if not cook in increments of 1 minute till done....will come away from sides...

Cool....Turn out....
Heat and pour over Carmel Topping
Serve with Cool Whip

For Vent N Serve and other Tupperware Products please visit: 
CraftyMomof3's Home Page 

Any questions? Email me

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Back to School Lunch Ideas

I thought since we are at the Back To School Stage that the next few posts could be dedicated to finding new and interesting ways of packing your children's lunch.

Great Lunch Box Treat or After School Snack

Since Kabobs are favorites in my house (my 9 year old will eat anything on a stick) I thought I'd start with Chip Chicken Pops! I found this recipe at
*After reading some of the reviews I suggest adding seasoning before you roll the chicken in chips.*

Chip Chicken Lollipops
READY IN  35 Min

  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 cups crushed chips(any chip of your choice)
  • lollipop sticks from a craft or party store
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a baking sheet.
  2. Crush potato chips onto a plate. In a large bowl, whisk together egg and milk. Dip the chicken cubes into the egg mixture, then coat well with chips. Spread the nuggets onto the baking sheet.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes. Turn nuggets over, and bake for 10 minutes more, until golden brown. Remove baking sheet from oven, and insert a lollipop stick into each nugget.
To compliment your chicken I recommend a ranch or honey mustard dipping sauce.
Ranch Dipping Sauce
  • 3/4 cup fat free plain yogurt
  • 1/3 cup light or fat free mayonnaise
  • 1 (1 ounce) package ranch dressing mix
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • (optional) 1/4 tsp of garlic salt
In a medium-size mixing bowl, blend yogurt, mayonnaise, and ranch dressing mix. Mix well with a wire whisk. Cover and refrigerate overnight for at least 6 hours. Sprinkle with parsley before serving. 

Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce
  • 1/4 cup light or fat free mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, mustard, honey, and lemon juice. Store covered in the refrigerator.

Lunch Box Suggestions
  • Make ahead. Bake chicken the day before. You could also store a big batch of coated chicken in the freezer and bake it as needed.
  • Make it lighter. Use baked instead of fried chips for the coating on the chicken. Choose low-fat and low-sodium options for the dip ingredients.
  • Make it fun. Fill mini storage containers with the dips(s) you know your kids will love to eat.
  • Make it safe. The lollipop sticks used in this recipe make for a fun presentation, but be sure your child is old enough to eat this dish safely if unsupervised.
  • Make it safer. Freeze a small carton of milk, bottle of water or juice box to keep lunches nicely chilled until ready to eat.
My 9 year old loves the sports bottle, she brings it for snack every day to school. It doesn't leak and it saves on sandwich bags! To view these products and more please visit my site. These products are located under: Kids/Kids/Kids & On the Go.

Any questions? Please feel free to email me.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Margarita jello Shots

Just because it's the kind of week I am having I thought I'd throw a little fun in this blog!  Have fun and drink up! (I know I will be!)

Margarita Jello Shots
6 ounces Lime Jello (large box)
16 ounces Water (boiling)
6 ounces Tequila
2 ounces Triple Sec
1 ounce Lime Juice
1 ounce Water (cold)

Mix the jello mix with the boiling water until the powder is fully
dissolved. Add the rest of the water and the alcohol.

Pour the mixture into Tupperware Jel-Ring Mold. Refrigerate until set.

To unmold, place hot towel on Jel-Ring Mold for 10-15 seconds.
Remove large seal and place Mold on serving platter.

Remove inner seal to release mold onto platter. Slice and serve.

Compliments of site impressions.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Taco Turkey Wraps

SUBMITTED BY: Kathy Neidermann at



  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 6 (8 inch) (8 inch) any style tortillas
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican blend cheese or Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 pound thinly sliced deli turkey breast
  • Salsa
*(not in the original recipe) I would also add a few fresh slices of tomato and lettuce*


  1. In a bowl, combine the sour cream and taco seasoning. Spread over tortillas. Sprinkle with cheese. Top with turkey; roll up. Serve with salsa if desired.

Another addition I would add is fresh guacamole.
My own recipe:

2 fresh ripe avocados
1 tbs of roasted garlic
1/2 lime
8 cherry tomatoes
1/4 sweet onion FRESH-very important.

Blend garlic, tomatoes & onion together until smooth.
Mash avocados until smooth.
Add mixture and the lime.
Stir & serve.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

7 layer cassarole

Yummy! Just found this great Rachel Ray recipe... Usually  Rachel never fails me! Try it out yourself and tell me how it goes!

7 Layer Cassarole Recipe:


  • 1 package corn tortillas or any color corn chips
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or cooking spray
  • 1 box elbow macaroni
  • 1 tablespoon EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, grated, divided
  • 4 jalapeño peppers, finely chopped, divided
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon coriander
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 bottle of beer
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 14.5-ounce can chopped tomatoes with chilies, drained
  • 3 cups shredded yellow cheddar cheese, divided
  • 2 cans vegetarian spicy refried beans
  • 5 to 6 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • Salt
  • 2 limes, zest of 1 and juice of 2
  • 2 avocados
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Hot sauce to taste
  • 1/2 head iceberg lettuce, shredded
  • 1/2 cup chopped olives with pimientos
  • 1 bunch scallions, chopped

Yields: 12 servings


Preheat oven to 400˚F.
If using corn tortillas, cut them into thin strips about 1/2 inch thick, and place them onto a baking sheet. Toss them with some vegetable oil or spray with cooking spray and season them with salt and ground pepper. Pop them into the oven and cook until crispy and golden, about 15 minutes.
Bring a large pot of water up to a boil over high heat. Salt the water then add the noodles and cook to package instructions.
Place a large skillet over medium high heat with a tablespoon EVOO. Brown the meat, then add in the onion, 4 cloves grated garlic and 2 jalapeños, and cook until tender.
Season the meat and veggies with chili powder, coriander, cumin and tomato paste. Let the meat mixture cook for a minute or two with the spices, then add the beer and let that cook down for about 4-5 minutes. Reserve.
While the meat is cooking, make the cheese sauce: In a saucepot over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the flour and give it a stir to combine with the butter. Cook for a minute or so then whisk in the milk. Cook until thickened.
Drain the can of tomatoes with chilies and add them to the thickened milk mixture. Fold in 2 1/2 cups cheese and the reserved noodles. Season with salt and pepper, and reserve.
In another saucepot, heat up the can of refried beans with a little bit of water.
To build the casserole, spread the beef mixture out in the bottom of a casserole dish. Top with the refried beans and finish it off with the mac and cheeses and the remaining cheese. Pop the casserole into the oven and bake until golden brown, about 15-20 minutes.
While the casserole is baking, make the salsa: Mix the plum tomatoes, remaining jalapeño peppers, red onion and cilantro in a small bowl. Season with salt, lime zest and juice, and reserve.
For the guacamole sour cream, scoop the flesh of the avocados into the bowl of a food processor and add the sour cream, lemon juice, remaining 2 cloves grated garlic and hot sauce. Process until creamy.
Once the casserole comes out of the oven, top it with the crispy corn strips and shredded iceberg lettuce. Top with the salsa, then the guacamole sour cream and finally the chopped olives with pimientos and scallions.

Click here for the direct link for the recipe.

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