Easy Stovetop Mac and Cheese

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Who doesn’t love a good bowl of thick, cheesy macaroni and cheese? Even if I can’t fully indulge in this because it’s full of dairy, I still love making it for family and having a few small bites. Yes, I live on the edge and lead a dangerous life! Maybe not, but this recipe is super easy and took less than 15 minutes to make. It’s the perfect post Halloween meal to top off your sugar induced coma with, enjoy. :)

Ingredients:

1 pound shell pasta
1 1/2 cups milk
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2-3 cups shredded cheese, like cheddar, monterey jack, or colby
1/2 teaspoon seasoning salt

Directions:

1. Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil, add pasta and cook for about 8 minutes. Drain and set aside.

2. When the pasta has finished cooking, prepare the cheese sauce. Begin warming 1 cup of the milk in the saucepan over medium heat. Whisk together the remaining 1/2 cup of milk and the flour until there are no lumps. When you just start to see tendrils of steam rising from the warming milk, whisk in the milk-and-flour mixture. Continue whisking gently until the milk thickens slightly to the consistency of heavy cream, 3-4 minutes.

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3. Turn the heat to low and begin mixing handfuls of cheese into the milk. Stir in the seasoning salt. Stir until all the cheese has melted and the sauce is creamy. Taste and adjust the seasoning as desired. Remove the sauce from heat.

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4. Add the pasta to the sauce and stir until well combined. Serve and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from The Kitchn

 

Anything but Boring Pumpkin Bread (GF, DF)

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This time of year is my favorite time to bake because everything has pumpkin in it. You can’t go to any grocery store, bakery, or restaurant without some sort of pumpkin flavored food screaming for your attention. Pumpkin cookies, pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin donuts, pumpkin muffins….pumpkin, pumpkin, PUMPKIN! I love it but I must admit, I loved it much more last year when I was able to eat all of it. This year it’s a bit of a bummer that everything has gluten and dairy in it. Don’t get me wrong, if you catch me on a weak day I might have a couple of lactose pills in one hand and a pint of Ben and Jerry’s pumpkin cheesecake ice cream in the other. I will feel like total hell for the rest of the night and the next day but that 30 minutes of pure heaven was worth it.

For the rest of the time that I decide to stay on track, I made this delicious pumpkin bread that tastes exactly like the kind full of gluten I’ve made in the past. I was so surprised by exactly how much it tastes the same. It’s so soft and full of yummy pumpkin flavor. My husband couldn’t tell a difference and loved it so much! He told me I wasn’t allowed to share this loaf with anyone because it was too good to leave the house. Perhaps a little selfish but a great compliment and I’ll take it! My stomach does not react well to xantham gum (it’s actually pretty nasty stuff if you read about it) so I use gelatin instead when baking with gluten free flour. I use 1/2 teaspoon for every 2 cups flour. It makes everything nice and fluffy as you can tell from the bread and it turned out beautiful. I’m so happy with the Betty Crocker flour also, it hasn’t failed me yet. I hope you enjoy this bread during the holidays this year :)

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Dairy Free Banana Bars

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I go in phases where I will eat a banana everyday, sometimes two in a day. They’re so simple to take with you for breakfast or a snack. However, last month I was in a banana hating phase. After a while of eating this easy, on-the-go fruit day after day I just can’t peel another mushy banana for breakfast. One day I passed by the huge mound of yellow fruit in the grocery store and I looked at them with a little bit of disgust and just keep walkin’…no more bananas! But, as with most of my phases, this one passed and I’m back to my banana loving phase. Which brings us to this delicious dairy free recipe. I had my doubts about these banana bars when I was making the batter because it seemed a little too easy and too healthy. But I was so shocked when I tasted them because they’re super delicious. They have just the right amount of sweetness and banana flavor mixed together. Who is ready for yummy pumpkin fall desserts? I am, it’s my favorite time of the year!

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Ham and Egg Crepe Squares

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Aren’t theses the cutest crepes you’ve ever seen?? Apparently they are “deee-licious” as well. I wouldn’t know because my husband gobbled up every last bite before I could taste them but wanted me to make sure I wrote “delicious” as their description. Umm, thanks, I guess…. :) Looks like I’ll be making another batch very soon.

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No Bake Nutella Bites

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Whoever made Nutella is a genius, it’s one of the most delicious chocolaty spreads I’ve ever had and I’ve been eating it since I was a kid.  I remember before this became the popular food to eat, my Dad brought a jar back from Europe and we would spread it all over our croissants for breakfast. He was a bit of a health freak, so I inhaled it before he could change his mind and realize we were eating dessert for breakfast. These little desserts are like tiny bites of Nutella heaven. They make a great breakfast, snack, or dessert. Hope you enjoy!

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Healthy Banana “Ice Cream”

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I have an extreme love/hate relationship with ice cream. I’m crazy in love with its creaminess and there are hundreds of flavors that always satisfy my sweet tooth! But I hate how my favorite sweet treat makes my tummy feel after I indulge and I end up cursing its delicious name, wishing I had never laid a spoon in it. I swear right then and there that this is the end of our creamy, delicious relationship…until I cave and run back to the store, spoon in hand.
I’ve been pretty good the past few weeks while I’ve been dairy free and it’s been soo hard….really hard! I don’t miss cheese, milk, sour cream, sauces…I just miss my beloved ice cream really bad. So, I found an alternative on Pinterest for banana “ice cream”. I was willing to try it out and while it’s not Ben and Jerry’s, it was pretty darn good!

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Peanut Butter and Nutella Graham Cracker Blondies

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Go big or go home, right?? This dessert is a mouth full just to say. It’s loaded with every delicious ingredient that normally makes just one dessert super yummy, so why not throw them all into one pan and completely over do it! If you’re on a diet then I suggest you not even attempt the make this or just screw it and put on your fat pants and dig in because this is all sorts of delicious! :) Continue reading