Easy Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins

Allow me to share with you the story of day these Easy Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins were born.

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One day I thought to myself, “What if I mixed up chocolate muffins as usual? Then what if I poured cheesecake topping on them before I baked them? What if?”

I did all of that, but then I one-upped my idea by sprinkling mini-chocolate chips on top just before sliding them into the oven. This, of course, completed the recipe as if I was baking perfection itself.

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Upon the birth of these delicious chocolate cheesecake babies, I began to consider other cheesecake-topped muffin options and lo, their little muffin siblings were born into the world. Coming soon to a Heavenly Homemakers blog near you:

  • Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins
  • Banana Cheesecake Muffins
  • Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Muffins

You see, once I started, I simply couldn’t stop. This resulted in 48 muffins atop my kitchen counter (and a significant number of dirty mixing bowls in my sink). Therefore, I had no choice but to invite approximately half the college campus to come over and eat muffins. I made for them a huge jar of Iced Coffee with which to wash them down.

And behold, it was good.

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Additional Cheesecake Muffin recipes coming soon!

It is a fact that I was able to crank out 48 muffins in one setting because I had a container full of Muffin Mix just begging to be used. This made it so easy that I just kept scooping, mixing, playing, and creating.

simple mixes

I said it before. I’ll say it again. These Simple Mixes are my new super power.

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I now present to you the first of the series of cheesecake muffin recipes. And if I’m you, I’d take advantage of the Simple Mixes that Save the Day eBook offer so that you, too, will be given this Super Power. Then we can all make all these muffins as quickly as possible and also we can teleport. What? If I’m going to have a Muffin Mix Super Power, I would also like to teleport. A girl can dream.

Easy Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins

Easy Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins
 
Author:
Serves: 12-15
Ingredients
  • 2 cups Muffin Mix** or...
  • 1½ cups whole grain flour
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar or sucanat
  • ½ teaspoon baking power
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • Cheesecake topping:
  • 8 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tablespoons real maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup mini chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Scoop Muffin Mix or measure dry ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Add egg, sour cream, milk, and melted butter, stirring until ingredients are combined.
  3. Scoop batter into 12-15 prepared muffin tins.
  4. Prepare cheesecake topping by blending (in a blender or with a hand mixer) cream cheese, egg, maple syrup, and vanilla until smooth.
  5. Spoon 2-3 Tablespoons of cheesecake topping over each unbaked muffin.
  6. Sprinkle chocolate chips over the top of each.
  7. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 18-22 minutes or until muffins are golden brown.

**If you have our Simple Mixes to Save the Day eBook, save time and energy by using the Muffin Mix for this recipe instead!!

Easy Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins

The BEST Creamy Mac and Cheese, Made Simpler and Faster

Back in the olden days of blogging, I shared what became one of my most popular recipes: Creamy Mac and Cheese. What makes this Creamy Mac and Cheese different? It’s made with whole grain pasta and it’s made with a completely different method which gives it the ultimate chance of creaminess. This happens because…

We cook the pasta directly in milk.

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Yes. We dump dry pasta into a pot and we pour in a generous amount of milk (whole milk, because creaminess). We salt it to taste, then we cook and stir until the pasta is tender and the creaminess becomes perfection. We remove it from the heat because we are people who read directions! Then we stir in the cheese and we cry tears of joy as we serve the delicious Creamy Mac and Cheese to our families.

So now, eight years after I first shared this recipe online, I will tell you a fun little tip so you can make this wonderful recipe in an even simpler, faster way. It’s this:

The smaller the noodle, the faster your Creamy Mac and Cheese hits the table.

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It’s kind of a no-brainer. However, I had always used penne or fusilli shaped pasta for this recipe, both of which are similar in size and take about 15 minutes to cook. Fifteen minutes is not a long time to get dinner on the table. But…

One day recently, I used small elbow noodles to make this Creamy Mac and Cheese and boom. The pasta was tender before I’d even cooked the peas or washed the grapes to go with our meal. Sweet! Not only can we make this meal without having to think ahead to thaw meat, we can throw it together even faster if we use a smaller noodle.

I’d say that taking advantage of this tip is really “using our noodle” but then I’d sound like Elmo and I’m not sure that’s how I want you to remember me.

Creamy Mac and Cheese Made Simpler and Faster

5.0 from 1 reviews
The BEST Creamy Mac and Cheese, Made Simpler and Faster
 
Author:
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 2½ cups whole grain pasta
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt (more or less to taste)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese
Instructions
  1. Mix pasta, milk, and salt in a large sauce pan.
  2. Cook over medium-high heat stirring almost constantly until the pasta is tender (10-15 minutes).
  3. Remove from heat. (IMPORTANT!)
  4. Add cheese and stir until melted.
  5. Serve immediately.

Keep this recipe in your hip pocket for days you need to get a meal on the table quickly. Use small sized pasta so this will cook more quickly. Serve it with a salad and/or veggies and fresh fruit and you’ve just put a super simple meal on the table in record time.

The BEST Creamy Mac and Cheese

My favorite whole grain pasta to use in this recipe:

I have successfully made this recipe with Tinkyada Rice Pasta, so gluten-free friends, you get to enjoy this recipe too!

NOTE: It is quite important that you remove the cooked pasta from the heat BEFORE you add the cheese. If the pasta is still cooking when the cheese is added, this may cause the cheese to curdle. In addition, I’ve found that using pre-shredded cheese in this recipe doesn’t work as well because of the added ingredients in the packaging. I use cheese we shred at home for best results.

Creamy Mac and Cheese Varieties

Have you tried this method for making Mac and Cheese? What’s your favorite pasta shape?

Psssssst!

Seeing as this recipe is definitely a Heavenly Homemaker Favorite, you can bet that it’s included in my Best of Heavenly Homemakers book!! (There are only a few recipes included, but this had to be one of them!)

I just peeked and the book is up already on Amazon! Be the first to grab it!!

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Simple Overnight Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole

My favorite aspect of this Simple Overnight Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole is that I can get it completely ready the night before, then slide it into the oven in the morning without having to think, measure, talk, or care. Allow me to share with you a bit about myself and how mornings work for me.

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I typically get up at least an hour before my family rolls out of bed in the morning. Do you know what that means? That means that for at least one hour every day no one talks to me, asks me questions, makes a request, or assumes I actually know the time of today’s soccer game. Once the people wake up, my brain must be on full power, ready to answer all the questions, write all the sentences, make all the reminders, plan all the meals, and remember to add toilet paper to the list.

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For the first several years of my married-with-kids life, I woke up and immediately hit the ground running. My quiet time in the mornings meant I could actually accomplish something before a small child unraveled my efforts with his sticky but adorable hands. I could get work done without interruption and perhaps enjoy some productivity – in the quiet.

This was all well and good, except that I missed out on one very important aspect needed in life: actual quiet.

I was deceived into thinking that productivity meant checking tasks off my to-do list. Now I know the truth, that productivity can look like rest. Productivity can mean that I’m sitting, savoring, breathing, and simply being loved by the Father in the moments of quiet. Nothing in this world is more productive.

Do I miss out on that precious and much needed hour of work time? No. I absolutely do not. The work is still there. The work still gets done (no it doesn’t). There’s peace in my heart that didn’t exist before I started giving my days to God in the quiet, and this means much, much more than a house full of completed check-lists.

All that to say: Making this French Toast Casserole at night, then effortlessly slipping it into the oven first thing in the morning means that I can still present an amazing breakfast to my family while still enjoying my quiet morning with the Lord. (Though to be clear, sometimes I present a half-hearted breakfast of stale cereal because as easy as this recipe is, I don’t have time to do something like this every night. No one ever died eating the stale cereal and everyone is happier when Mom starts her day with Jesus.)

Simple Overnight Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole

Simple Overnight Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole
 
Author:
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients
  • 1 loaf whole grain bread
  • 2½ cups whole milk
  • ¼ cup brown sugar or sucanat
  • 6 eggs
  • 8 ounces pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon Pumpkin Spice*
  • Topping:
  • ½ cup melted butter
  • ¼ cup brown sugar or sucanat
  • ⅓ cup pecan
  • 1 Tablespoon Pumpkin Spice*
Instructions
  1. Cut bread into cubes and spread them into a 9x13 inch baking pan. Set aside.
  2. In a bowl, whisk milk, sugar, eggs, pumpkin puree, vanilla, and pumpkin spice.
  3. Pour liquids over the bread cubes.
  4. Cover the pan and refrigerate overnight (or all day if you plan to make this in the evening for dinner).
  5. Before baking, stir together the topping ingredients.
  6. Sprinkle topping over the prepared casserole.
  7. Place casserole into a COLD oven, then turn it on to 350 degrees.
  8. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until casserole is lightly browned.
  9. Serve with real maple syrup.

*Find the recipe for our Pumpkin Spice mix here. Or substitute: 1 teaspoon ground cloves, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg in this recipe.

Simple Overnight Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole

 

Have you been able to find some quiet moments with the Lord in your day? What time of day works best for you to do this?

From Burrito Bar to Casserole – a 5 Minute Way to Use Leftovers!

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Allow me to tell you about two of my favorite new Simple Meals tricks! From Burrito Bar to Casserole, here are two meals that go together super easily!

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The first favorite Simple Meals trick is this: Any time I’ve been privileged to feed a large crowd lately, I have been setting up a Burrito Bar. I fed Asa’s soccer team this way (35+ college male athletes, phew!). I fed Matt’s soccer team this way (20+ college women athletes – Matt’s their assistant coach).

It is important, yet frustrating, to note that I took no pictures of either meal because I always get too busy with the food and the fellowship and I forget to take a picture. I regret this every time. But moving on…

What is great about setting up a Burrito Bar is that each person can build a burrito (or three) to his or her liking. And best yet, those who have food allergies can still eat this meal! (My gluten free friends skip the tortilla but can eat everything else. My dairy free friends can skip the cheese and sour cream and eat everything else. It’s so simple!)

Burrito Bar Fixin’s

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And now for my second favorite Simple Meals trick! After I’m finished serving the Burrito Bar, I stir together the leftovers and spread it into a casserole dish. This makes it super easy to put away leftovers! And it makes for a very delicious meal on another day, which takes zero effort!

I fully admit that this doesn’t look super appetizing. For shame. Something so delicious should not look so…blah.

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I will now attempt to give you an idea of measurements so that you, too, can stir together Burrito Bar leftovers and create a new meal of…what shall we call it? Burrito Bar Casserole? Cheesy Mexican Rice? Mom’s Night Off? Yes, let’s call it that.

From Burrito Bar To Casserole

From Burrito Bar to Casserole - a 5 Minute Way to Use Leftovers!
 
Author:
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients
  • Leftover cooked chicken or hamburger (1-2 pounds)
  • Leftover cooked rice (2-3 cups)
  • Leftover beans (up to 2 cups)
  • Salsa (2-3 cups)
  • Sour Cream (2-3 cups)
  • Shredded cheese (1-3 cups, optional)
Instructions
  1. Stir these leftovers together, not worrying much about the measurements!
  2. Spread the mixture into a 9x13 inch casserole dish.
  3. Top it with cheese (optional).
  4. Cover and refrigerate until ready to warm and serve. Or cover and freeze for up to two months.
  5. When you are ready to serve this meal, cover it with foil and slide it into a cold oven.
  6. Bake a refrigerated casserole at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes. Bake a frozen casserole at 275 degrees for 2-3 hours or until hot and bubbly.

From Burrito to Casserole - a 5 minute way to use leftovers

Do not get stuck on the measurements for this “casserole.” Simply stir the leftovers together until it looks right for your family. Then your kids might do what mine did, take one bite, and say, “This is actually pretty good.”

Actually?

Yes, because it’s so shocking that my food would taste good. (Okay, but in their defense, it didn’t look super tasty, right?)

More Simple Recipes

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Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts (How to Cook Fresh Donuts in Minutes!)

Introducing a perfect idea for this fall: Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts!

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After learning that it works well to make and freeze unbaked Giant Breakfast Cookies, Homemade Poptarts, Chocolate Chip Breakfast Bars, and all varieties of Muffins so that we can bake them fresh in the morning without any trouble, I thought, “Why not try this idea with my Whole Wheat Pumpkin Donut recipe?”

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One of these things is not like the the other. Someone, who shall remain nameless,
forgot to cut a donut hole in one of the donuts. Hmmm…

Indeed. We can mix up the pumpkin donuts, roll out the dough, cut the shapes, then freeze the uncooked dough on parchment paper or silicone mat-lined cookie sheets. We transfer the frozen dough into freezer bags, then any time we want fresh donuts (and when would we not want fresh donuts?), we can grab some out of the freezer and fry them up fresh to eat while sipping a cup of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate.

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Can you think of a better breakfast treat to enjoy this fall than fresh homemade Pumpkin Donuts?

The best part is that the mixing, rolling, cutting, and clean up will have already been taken care of! Well, clearly the best part is eating the fresh donuts. But eating the fresh donuts without looking at a messy kitchen that you’ll have to clean up afterward? Fabulous.

Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts

5.0 from 1 reviews
Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts (How to Cook Fresh Donuts in Minutes!)
 
Author:
Serves: 15-20
Ingredients
  • 3½ cups whole wheat flour (I use freshly ground hard or soft white wheat)
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ cup sucanat or brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • Oil for frying (I recommend coconut oil or palm shortening for healthy frying)
  • GLAZE:
  • 2 cups powdered sugar (I use unbleached powdered sugar)
  • ⅓ cup buttermilk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Stir together whole wheat flour, baking powder, sea salt, ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and sucanat. Add melted butter, eggs, vanilla, buttermilk, and pumpkin puree – mixing until all ingredients are well combined.
  2. Roll dough on a well-floured surface.
  3. Cut out donuts and donut holes (makes about 30 of each).
  4. Lay the cut outs on a parchment-paper lined cookie sheet and freeze for at least 2 hours.
  5. Transfer prepared donuts to a freezer bag to store in the freezer until ready for use.
  6. To Cook: Set donuts out of the freezer at room temperature for about 15 minutes before frying.
  7. Fry dough in hot oil for about 3 minutes or until donuts are golden brown.
  8. Whisk glaze ingredients together and drizzle over warm donuts before serving.

Make-Ahead Pumpkin Donuts (Whole Grain, Low Sugar, Easy!)

Concerned about the fact that these treats are fried? Don’t be! Coconut and Palm Oils can withstand high temperatures without becoming harmful to us. So instead of fearing the fry, we can actually enjoy the healthy fat we’re getting while enjoying these donuts.

Wow. Who knew we would ever be able to say, “I need some healthy fats in my diet. Please pass the donuts.”

But of course, let us not ever eat more donuts than veggies, yada, yada. You know the drill.

WAIT. There are veggies in these donuts (thank you, pumpkin, for being there for us when we need you). So I guess we can enjoy these to our heart’s delight, all while enjoying the fact that you can make them ahead and freeze them for ease in the kitchen.

This is what I call one happy fall recipe!

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Honey Sweetened No-Bake Cookies – Prepare To Be Amazed!

When you no longer eat much sugar, but you want to enjoy your childhood favorite No-Bake Cookies…you make the cookies with a little bit of honey to see if you can pull it off. They turn out so delicious you start dancing in the living room.

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What? Of course you can dance about cookies. Delicious No-Bake Cookies made with honey are worth dancing over.

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For the record, I don’t dance in public. There is good reason for this as my feet and my head don’t always play nice together. My head knows where my feet should go and gives directions accordingly. But then my feet are like, “Are you kidding me right now?” then my head is like, “That is not at all what I told you to do; what are you actually thinking?” and my feet say, “You aren’t the boss of me, I’ll do what I want.” So then my brain gives up and says, “Forget it. At least I’m good at making cookies.”

My friend Kim sent me this recipe idea, then I tweaked it just a bit to make it my own. I guess we could say that it’s Kim’s fault that I was dancing in the living room. She can be glad I didn’t invite her over to watch. Though I probably should thank her with a cookie sometime.

Honey Sweetened No-Bake Cookies

2.0 from 1 reviews
Honey Sweetened No-Bake Cookies
 
Author:
Serves: 18-20
Ingredients
  • ½ - ¾ cup honey
  • ⅔ cup natural peanut butter
  • ½ cup butter or coconut oil
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 cups old fashioned oats
Instructions
  1. In a medium-sized sauce pan, stir together honey, peanut butter, butter, and cocoa powder.
  2. Melt and stir ingredients over medium heat until well combined and slightly bubbly.
  3. Remove from heat.
  4. Add oats and stir until coated.
  5. Scoop 1-2 Tablespoons of mixture onto a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet.
  6. Chill No-Bake Cookies in the refrigerator until they are set, about 1 hour.

Honey Sweetened No Bake Cookies

Want some more Low Sugar Cookie recipes?

With all these recipes making us so very happy, we will all be dancing in our living rooms. What will the neighbors think?

Are you a No-Bake Cookie fan? Did you grow up eating these? Can you dance? (I mean, any of us can. But are you good at it?)

Easy Low Sugar Pumpkin Spice Roll-Out Cookies

Allow me to introduce a new seasonal favorite: Easy Low Sugar Pumpkin Spice Roll-Out Cookies.

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While I’ve shared that I just can’t get behind Pumpkin Spice Coffee (typing it actually makes me shudder just a little bit), I most certainly enjoy making many Pumpkin Spice treats this time of year – to eat while I drink my (plain, non-pumpkin-spice) coffee. If my house smells of nothing but Pumpkin Spice from now until Christmas, there will be much joy in the holiday season.

Of course, seeing as I live with a houseful of teenage boys, my house not only smells of Pumpkin Spice, it also frequently smells like Old Spice. And old shoes. Annnnnd cute girls.

It’s an interesting combination, you can be sure. One that I am so very blessed to experience. What a great God we serve!

Do you see His goodness all around you? Even in the midst of struggle? Even throughout the daily grind? Even during times of hardship and devastation?

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I love God. All that He offers is good, and all good comes from Him. I am continually in awe of how He provides for our spiritual needs, which makes all else fade.

What does this have to do with Pumpkin Spice Cookies? Ha. I don’t know. Lately I find myself working my way through all the day-to-day of life, which includes this houseful of teenage boys (and the cute girls that stop by) and in the midst of the cookies and the shoes and the vacuuming and the piles of mail, I sit in wonder at the peace God is revealing to me though His Spirit.

And in the Pumpkin Spice Cookie – well – there is joy. Especially when there is a great cup of coffee (sans Pumpkin Spice) to go with it.

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Easy Low Sugar Pumpkin Spice Roll-Out Cookies

Easy Low Sugar Pumpkin Spice Roll-Out Cookies
 
Author:
Serves: 18-24
Ingredients
  • 1 cup melted butter
  • ½ cup brown sugar or sucanat
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon Pumpkin Spice*
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 cups whole wheat flour (I use freshly ground soft white wheat)
Instructions
  1. Cream together melted butter and sugar.
  2. Add egg, vanilla, pumpkin spice, and sea salt.
  3. Stir in flour until well combined.
  4. Cover and chill dough for 1-2 hours.
  5. Roll dough to approximately ¼ inch thickness between layers of parchment paper or on a well-floured surface.
  6. Cut rolled dough with cookie cutter shapes and place cut-outs on a baking sheet, ½ inch apart.
  7. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 7-10 minutes or until cookies are lightly browned.

Easy Low Sugar Pumpkin Spice Roll-Out Cookies

 

I’d love to hear about the joy of the Lord you are experiencing right now. Struggling to see His goodness? Look around at what you have, and I’m not talking about your stuff. See His goodness in the details of your life. In joy, in pain, in suffering – God is good. His mercies are new every morning.

And sometimes, they take on the form of a Pumpkin Spice Cookie dunked in coffee.

Simple Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole

Let’s make a long story short, shall we? When you put the words “bacon” and “cheeseburger” in the same title, everyone gets excited. When you add the word “simple” to its name, you know everyone wins. So without even seeing the recipe, you can bet that Simple Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole needs to hit your table very soon!

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Save yourself some effort and make two or three of these at once. Bake one for your dinner, then freeze the others (unbaked) to use another time. Then you’ve got “simple,” “bacon,” “cheeseburger,” and “freezer friendly” all in the same sentence. All the busy mothers everywhere cried with joy over this news.

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I recommend making Bacon Bits like this. I cut the bacon with kitchen shears to make it simple.

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Simple Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole

5.0 from 1 reviews
Simple Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole
 
Author:
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients
  • 1 pound hamburger meat
  • 1 pound bacon, uncooked, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons dry minced onion
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 6-ounces tomato paste
  • 8 eggs
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 cups shredded cheese (divided)
Instructions
  1. In a large pot, brown hamburger, bacon pieces, and minced onion together until meat is no longer pink.
  2. Drain excess grease if necessary.
  3. Stir in garlic powder, chili powder, salt and pepper, tomato paste, eggs, cream, and 1 cup of shredded cheese.
  4. Spread mixture into a 9x13 inch baking dish.
  5. Top with remaining cheese.
  6. Bake uncovered in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or until casserole is hot and bubbly.

Simple Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole

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Simple Chili Mac (Instructions for Instant Pot, Crock Pot, or Stovetop)

This Simple Chili Mac is the reason you should make a double batch of chili. Leftover chili (or purchased canned chili) makes this recipe take about 5 minutes to throw together.

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Also? How did I ever live without an Instant Pot? I know, I know. So many of you told me I would love it for the amount of time and effort it saves, but I could not handle thinking about learning how to use a new appliance. Good grief. There was nothing to learn. Okay, there was a little bit more than nothing to learn. There was about ten minutes of learning involved.

But now I’m like, “Here, Instant Pot. I give you my leftover chili and my dry pasta. Please make our lunch.”

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And then it does. Like a boss. Except I’m the boss because I told it what to make.

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If you don’t have an Instant Pot, you can still make this as simple as possible in your crock pot or your stove top.

Have I told you how much I love NOT cooking pasta before adding it to casserole dishes? Truly, any recipe that allows me to dump dry pasta into sauce and walk away is golden.

Simple Chili Mac

Simple Chili Mac (Instructions for Instant Pot, Crock Pot, or Stovetop)
 
Author:
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 48-ounces prepared Chili
  • 8-ounces whole grain pasta, any variety, uncooked
  • Sea salt to taste
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 cups shredded cheese
Instructions
  1. Stir chili, uncooked pasta, water and salt into Instant Pot, Crock Pot, or large cooking pot.
  2. Instant Pot: Cook at high pressure for 6 minutes.
  3. Crock Pot: Cook on low for 4 hours or hi for 2.5 hours.
  4. Stove Top: Cook on low heat, covered, stirring every few minutes until pasta is tender.
  5. Top casserole with cheese and allow it to melt before serving.

Simple Chili Mac - for Instant Pot, Crock Pot, or Stovetop

Here’s our Easy Chili Recipe! Using leftover chili for this Chili Mac recipe makes it extra simple!

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Make life even simpler when you sign up to receive our weekly Menu Planning Packets. One tiny price, loads of weekly help. Read about this and sign up here!

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Easy Peanut Butter Pudding

This one was Justus’ idea. He’s my 17-year old, my senior in high school. These are my last few months with him at home so when he said, “Mom, do you think you could figure out how to make Peanut Butter Pudding?” of course I immediately dropped whatever I was doing to work on his request.

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I kid. I mean, I would never drop whatever I’m doing to go with a whim of one of my children. Never would I attempt to spoil any of my kids. Especially when it comes to food. They must be taught patience, that the world doesn’t revolve around them, even if it is their senior year and the mother can’t breathe at the thought of missing out on the delightful morning conversations she enjoys with her second born every morning before the others wake up. Even if.

Okay fine. I dropped what I was doing and I made the kid some Peanut Butter Pudding. It sounded like an amazing treat, and I agreed with Justus that the protein mixed in with the sweetness would be a fabulous combination.

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As an aside, it is worth a mention that I learned with our first born that the world doesn’t end when you graduate a child and send him from home. Life with your adult child does, indeed, grow in richness (this is ironic because of the college bills). But this doesn’t stop me from feeling all of the many feelings associated with launching another child from our nest. I will enjoy this time with him to the full. I will cry tears of joy and pride frequently. And I will make him pudding with peanut butter in it, just because he mentions that it sounds good.

The recipe is simple (you would expect nothing less, right?). It is creamy and rich and delightful. It tastes even better served with Chocolate Pudding.

Easy Peanut Butter Pudding

5.0 from 1 reviews
Easy Peanut Butter Pudding
 
Author:
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients
  • 2½ cups milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • ½ cup natural creamy peanut butter
  • ½ cup real maple syrup, honey, sucanat, or brown sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons corn starch
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, whisk together all ingredients except butter and vanilla.
  2. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until pudding begins to thicken.
  3. Stir over the heat for about 15 more seconds or until pudding has reached desired thickness. Remove immediately from the heat, and continue to stir until pudding is creamy.
  4. (I use my whisk the whole time for stirring and find this works great!)
  5. Add butter and vanilla and continue to stir until mixed.
  6. Pour into serving dishes and serve warm, or chill for two hours and serve cold.

Easy Peanut Butter Pudding

It’s possible you can look forward to me sharing other great food ideas Justus has this year. Not that I’ll drop everything and make them on a whim. We would never, ever want to spoil our children. Especially with food. Even if it’s their senior year.

Justus Senior2600

“Hey Mom. Think you could make my favorite Italian Cream Cheese Chicken soon?” Absolutely, Justus. Absolutely.