It’s winter. It’s cold. It’s comfort food season, folks! And to me, there is just about nothing more comforting than a big bowl of steaming hot soup to warm the body and soul. My family loves when they smell a big pot of my chicken noodle soup cooking away on the stove, and as much as I adore that quick and easy classic recipe, this winter I’ve turned things up a notch. Instead of a BROTHY chicken noodle soup, this version is THICK and CREAMY and even more comforting than the original!
Today sounds like the perfect day to share a new smoothie with you guys! I mean, it’s still January, right? So we’re all still trying to hold onto our healthy diet resolutions, and I don’t know about you, but the easiest way for me to commit to better eating is to include a healthy shake or smoothie into my daily routine. It’s a no brainer… pop some yummy ingredients into a blender, and in just a few seconds I have a nutritious, protein-packed breakfast or post-workout snack that keeps my energy tank full for the day.
And I have to be honest with you guys… with the book deadline just over a month away, I need all the energy I can get right now! I’m finishing up the last 8 or 9 projects for the book this week, and then I have many, many hours of writing and editing ahead of me. Rather than sitting with my manuscript binging on potato chips or chocolate, it’s probably a much better idea to sip on a sweet smoothie while I work!
So let’s talk about this Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie, shall we? First of all, peanut butter lovers… this one’s for you! This has been my go-to smoothie for months now, and I think it’s because even though I LOVE making super sweet, fruit-filled smoothies like my Strawberry Banana or Tropical versions, sometimes I want something that tastes a little less fruity and a lot more like… I don’t know… a peanut butter cookie. Ha!
There is technically still fruit in this recipe, but the banana adds just a little bit of sweetness in the background while the peanut butter remains the star of the show. You can use any kind of milk you prefer… dairy, almond, soy, etc. And even though this recipe already has a good amount of protein from the Greek yogurt and peanut butter, if you’re looking to add a little extra kick of protein, go ahead and throw a scoop of vanilla or chocolate protein powder into the blender. It’s totally optional though! One last side note… You can use regular creamy peanut butter for this recipe, but lately I’ve been using PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter. Have you guys tried this stuff yet? It gives you the same peanut butter taste with 85% less fat and calories, if I remember correctly. Either way, this smoothie is sure to satisfy all the peanut butter fans out there!
Wake up to a bowl of this warm and delicious Triple Berry Baked Oatmeal for breakfast! It is easy to put together, can serve a crowd, and reheats beautifully!
We are now on day 16 of our kitchen renovation, and as excited as I am to see all the changes happening to our little farmhouse kitchen, I am NOT so crazy about living without a kitchen for 3 or 4 weeks. We were able to put our refrigerator in the living room (which is actually highly convenient but pretty ugly to look at), but other than that, all we have is a tiny table in my office with a microwave and a coffee pot. I don’t think I could survive this reno without my morning cup of caffeine, so the coffee pot heading down to the basement for a month was NOT happening.
We’re all growing pretty tired of eating bowls of cereal for breakfast every morning, but luckily I was smart enough to make a big batch of this Triple Berry Baked Oatmeal before our kitchen demo started! This is why I love baked oatmeal so much… you can whip up a batch on the weekend and have a hearty, homemade breakfast all week long. Just store leftovers in the fridge and reheat when you need it! I’ve shared a few of my favorite baked oatmeals here on the blog before… apple cinnamon, banana bread, cinnamon roll, and blueberry lemon, to name a few. I think you guys are going to love this wholesome, fruit-filled, warm and satisfying oatmeal recipe!
P.S. You can use fresh or frozen berries for this recipe, but I like to pick up a bag of frozen mixed berries from the store to save a little time and money. Also, as the berries bake and release their juices, the oatmeal will still look a little runny at the end of the cook time, but it will set up more once it cools for a few minutes!
Right about now, we’re all pushing the reset button on our diets and starting the new year with a resolution to eat healthier… am I right? Good, I’m glad we’re all in the same boat! This recipe is my all-time favorite chicken salad loaded with goodies like crunchy pecans, fresh dill, sweet grapes, and a hint of lemon juice. You can customize the ingredients however you like to suit your tastebuds, but instead of serving the chicken salad on bread or tortillas (like I did here), this time I’m serving it in adorable, little lettuce leaves! Major points for cuteness AND carb-savings with this recipe, guys!
I use this recipe quite often when I want a quick and easy lunch throughout the week or especially in the summertime when it’s too hot outside to eat a steaming hot meal. It’s light, lean, easy, super tasty, and perfect for your New Year’s diet resolutions! So put down those leftover cookies and candy from the holidays and go grab yourself some healthy groceries. We’re making chicken salad today!
P.S. I like to use butter lettuce when I can find it at the store because it’s the perfect size for making little boats of chicken salad, but romaine works well too! Enjoy, sweet friends!
I’m sitting here in my post-Christmas coma looking back on the year, and I honestly can’t believe 2015 is almost gone. It has been full of exciting highs and a few unexpected lows, but the endless love and support from you guys has been such a blessing in my life this year. Seriously, I read all of your sweet comments here on the blog and over on Instagram, and they mean the world to me!
To thank you for being part of my extended Love Grows Wild family, I wanted to count down the top 10 recipe posts from 2015 so that you can find our most delicious, most pinned, and highest rated recipes from the entire year all in one place!
Your feedback is super important and helps me decide what to put up on the blog, so please feel free to leave a shout-out in the comments with what types of recipes YOU want to see in 2016! Tell me which recipe was YOUR favorite from the year too!
And now, let’s kick-off this count down!
Perfectly chewy, soft and sweet Molasses Cookies! Easy to bake and SO good!
I’m still in total disbelief that it’s almost Christmas and we’ll soon be kissing 2015 goodbye. I have about 99% of my shopping done, our Christmas cards have been written and addressed (and are still sitting in a pile on my desk instead of heading to the mailbox, but still… ), and our little farmhouse is all decked out for the holidays. Did you guys see our Christmas at the Farmhouse Home Tour yet? Check out Part 1 and Part 2 after you grab today’s recipe!
All holiday preparation craziness is just about over, and I’m almost ready to take a little break from work, relax and enjoy Christmas with my family. We still have plenty of Christmas cookies and goodies to bake, carols to sing, and Christmas lights to go see! But before I hibernate for a few weeks, I just had pop in and share this DELICIOUS cookie recipe with you that happens to be perfect for the holidays! I think you all know by now that sugar cookies are by far my favorite, but these molasses cookies are so soft and chewy with the perfect crunch from a dip into some coarse sugar before baking and that classic molasses, cinnamon and ginger flavor that reminds us of the holidays!
These cookies are pretty simple to make, and I think you’re REALLY going to love me for sharing this one because there are instructions for how to prep these bad boys ahead of time so you’re not messing up the kitchen right before company comes over! See my note at the bottom of the recipe to find out how I make the dough up to 2 weeks ahead!
It warms my heart at the thought of my recipes coming to life in your kitchens this holiday season, and I want to say thank you so much for letting me into your home!
This sweet and creamy Gingerbread Milkshake will make you want to skip straight to dessert!
Few things in life make me happier than a thick, creamy milkshake. When my sister and I were little kids, we would save up our Halloween chocolate bars just so we could make milkshakes with them. Butterfinger was probably my favorite, and I would bang the candy bar on the counter with Mom’s meat mallet until it was broken into nice, little pieces. Then the candy went into a blender with vanilla ice cream and milk, and when I pressed the “on” button… pure magic would happen. It is probably one of my favorite memories of being in the kitchen as a child!
Now that I’m an adult, my love affair with milkshakes is still going strong, and although I don’t indulge in them often, I do enjoy making them for the boys, especially as special treats around the holidays. So today I thought I’d share one of my FAVORITE recipes with you guys that is super festive and super easy to make: Gingerbread Milkshakes!
This tasty treat has all the spice and flavor of a delicious gingerbread cookie and whips together in probably less than 60 seconds. It’s made with a combination of vanilla ice cream, vanilla extract, cinnamon, ginger, Biscoff spread (or cookie butter for you Trader Joe fans) and cold, refreshing milk. And if you want to make your milkshake extra special, follow my instructions for adding a gingerbread rim to your glass! It adds a fun, festive touch when serving these at a party!