Cannoli Cupcakes


I love cannoli. I have a friend that dearly loves them and recently celebrated a birthday. I decided to make cannoli cupcakes for his birthday. I must say they were a success. Chocolate cupcakes with cannoli whip cream frosting. 

Ingredients:

1 cup flour

1 cup sugar

6 Tablespoons unsweetened baking chocolate 

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 Egg

1/4 cup oil

1/2 cup buttermilk 

1/2 cup hot coffee

1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line tin with cupcake liners. 

In your mixing bowl, put flour, sugar, baking soda and powder and salt.  Whisk together. In a separate bowl, egg, oil and buttermilk and beat together. Add these liquid ingredients to your flour mixture. Add your hot coffee once the ingredients are mixed together. After coffee has been blended, add vanilla. Fill liners 1/2 full. Bake 18-20 minutes until cupcakes test clean. Cool completely before frosting. 


Cannoli Whip Cream Frosting:


Ingredients:

1 8 ounce container marscapone cheese

1 teaspoon Grand Marnier*

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup powdered sugar, or more to your taste

1 pint (2 cups) Heavy Cream

Mini chocolate chips for decorating 

Chocolate sauce for drizzling, optional

Chill mixing bowl and attachment for minimum of 30 minutes. Mix marscapone cheese, Grand Marnier and vanilla together quickly. Over mixing will cause the marscapone cheese to become watery. Add powdered sugar and mix. Pour in heavy cream and whip until it’s very stiff. Place in piping bag and frost cupcakes (I used a 1 M tip). I sprinkled mini chocolate chips on top. I also drizzled chocolate sauce on top of the cupcakes. Store in refrigerator. Enjoy!

*This is an orange liqueur. If you prefer not to use this in your frosting, use additional teaspoon of vanilla. 

Lisa’s Pizza Bowl

Pizza Bowl? Yes this is pizza without a crust. I was inspired by my friend Lisa that ordered this at a pizza restaurant in Louisiana. I knew once she sent me a photo that I could create this delicious low carb dish. Thank you Lisa and Happy Birthday!


Ingredients:

1/4 cup Pizza sauce, look at the back and use the one with the lowest carbs on the nutrition label, I used Contadina

Mozzarella cheese

Pizza toppings of your choice, I used meatballs and onions (I forgot my mushrooms)

Italian Seasoning, optional 


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 


 In a small bowl/dish, spread 1/4 sauce in the bottom of your bowl. Add your pizza toppings. I had planned on using mushrooms but I forgot to add them. Cover in mozzarella cheese and bake 5-8 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle on Italian seasoning if desired. Serve with a tossed salad using low carb dressing to round out your meal. This pizza bowl was 6 total carbs. Depending on what you chose for your toppings, it will determine your carbs. For example, red peppers have more carbs than green peppers. Enjoy!

Patriotic Pound Cake 

Just in time for Fourth of July! I present my Patriotic Pound Cake made with fresh strawberries and blueberries. I also added some red, white and blue sprinkles in the batter to make it even more patriotic. Have a slice with coffee for breakfast or serve it as a simple dessert. 
Ingredients:  

3/4 cup butter, (1 and 1/2 sticks) room temperature 

1 cup of sugar

3 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 teaspoon almond extract

1 3/4 cup flour plus an additional 2 Tablespoons for the berries

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup milk

1/2 cup blueberries

1/2 cup strawberries, chopped

5 Tablespoons of red, white and blue sprinkles


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line loaf pan with parchment paper or nonstick foil. 

In a mixing bowl, mix butter an sugar until light yellow and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and blend. Add extracts and mix well. 


In a separate bowl, whisk flour, baking powder and salt. Alternate flour mixture and milk. Once everything had been combined, stir in 5 Tablespoons of sprinkles to the batter. Add 2 Tablespoons flour to the berries, stir to coat the berries before adding them to the batter. This will keep the berries from sinking to the bottom. Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until a tester comes out clean. Cool completely before glazing. 


Glaze:

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1/2 teaspoon almond or vanilla extract

1 -2 Tablespoons of milk

Decorative sprinkles, optional
Mix sugar with extract and one Tablespoon of milk. Add additional Tablespoon of milk if needed. Pour over Pound Cake. Decorate with more sprinkles if desired. 

Outback’s Salted Caramel Cookie Skillet


One of my favorite restaurants to eat at is Outback Steakhouse.  Outback was founded here in Tampa Florida in 1988. The original restaurant on Henderson Bouvelard is still open. I have so many favorites that I have tried and enjoyed the many years since I have been dining there. Their Salted Caramel Cookie Skillet is my latest favorite. The star is the cookie with white chocolate chips, toffee bits and pretzels. Just the cookies alone would be delicious. Outback changes their menu frequently so when I find something I like, I try to figure it out so I can enjoy it at home after it vanishes from the menu. 


Ingredients:

1 c flour
1/2 t baking soda

1/2 salt

1 stick butter, room temperature 

6 T granulated sugar

6 T brown sugar

1 Egg

2 t vanilla

3/4 cup white chocolate chips

3/4 cup toffee chips

1/2 cup pretzels, crushed into small pieces (I placed mine in a plastic bag and crushed them with a rolling pin)

Vanilla Ice Cream

Salted Caramel ice cream topping


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

Whisk together flour, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl and set aside. Mix together softened, granulated and brown sugar. Add egg and vanilla and blend well. Stir in white chocolate chips, toffee chips and pretzels. 


No skillet?  No worries, just make a big cookie on a cookie sheet and eat it from a bowl when the cookie is baked. I highly recommend parchment paper or a silpat on your cookie sheet if you are just baking cookies. 
Place cookie dough in a small cast iron skillet or make big cookies on a cookie sheet. Bake 8-11 minutes for normal size cookies. If you are making larger dessert size or skillet size cookies on a cookie sheet, they will take longer. I used a 6″ cast iron skillet and mine baked about 16 minutes. Time will vary with the size of cookies you make. Top with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream and salted caramel ice cream topping. Serve warm. This recipe yields 4 very large cookies.  Enjoy!

Olive Garden Chicken 

Why is this Olive Garden Chicken? I marinated my boneless, skinless chicken breasts in Olive Garden Salad Dressing. Makes for moist, tender and yummy tasty chicken breast. I grilled these on my grill but you could bake them and shoot them under the broiler right before they are done. 


I used a copper grill mat on my BBQ grill. I will remove it and the sauce/char will come right off. Keeps your grill clean too. My Dad is not a big fan of char on meat. I like it. ☺️

Ingredients:

1 large bottle Olive Garden Italian Salad Dressing or your favorite Italian dressing

Boneless, skinless chicken Breasts



Look how juicy the chicken breast is. 

Place chicken breasts in a container and pour dressing over the chicken. Make sure dressing covers the chicken. Cover and leave in refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours. You can marinate longer, 6-8 hours or overnight. I prefer overnight. If you decide to use plastic bags to marinate, make sure you double bag or place in a bowl while they are marinating. 


Grill, bake/broil until done. If you are grilling, grill over medium high heat. Check chicken with an instant read thermometer. Cooked chicken is 165 degrees. Remove your chicken about a minute before it’s done because it will continue to cook after it’s removed from the heat. You can also baste the dressing on your chicken near the end of cooking if desired. Pair with your favorite sides. These chicken breasts freeze and reheat well. Enjoy

Banana Pudding Pie


I remember my Mom cooking banana pudding with sliced bananas on the stove when I was growing up. It came from a box but still a sweet memory. I took that memory and converted it to a homemade Banana Pudding Pie. Simple, delicious and easy to make. My Dad even had seconds, so I know it was good!  


Crust:1 11 ounce box of vanilla wafer cookies

1 sick of butter, melted


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Crush cookies and stir in melted butter. Form a crust in your pie plate. Bake shell for 8 minutes and set aside. 
Pudding Pie Filling:

1 1/2 cups sugar

1/4 cup flour

2 Tablespoons cornstarch 

2 cups of milk, divided 

3 egg yokes, beaten

2 Tablespoons butter

3 bananas sliced 

2 teaspoons vanilla


In a saucepan, add sugar, flour and cornstarch and whisk together. Over medium heat, add one cup of milk and whisk, add in egg yokes and butter. Pour in the remaining cup of milk and start adding the sliced bananas. Bring to boil and stir frequently to prevent scorching and burning. Once pudding is very thick, remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Pour in pie shell and refrigerate overnight or until set and firm. Decorate with whip cream. Enjoy!

Bagel And Egg Casserole 

I first saw a version of this casserole on The Today Show. I had to change the ingredients to my liking so I have created this very versatile breakfast casserole that would be prefect for brunch, lunch or dinner paired with a salad. 
Ingredients:

4 everything bagels, (plain or onion can be used) torn into pieces

3 Tablespoons of chopped onion

1 8 ounce block of cream cheese, room temperature 

1/4 pound sliced ham, torn into pieces or 1 pound bacon cooked and crumbled 

8 eggs

2 cups milk

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 

1 teaspoon dry mustard

1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Butter for 13 x 9 pan, be generous or it will stick

Butter inside of 13 x 9 pan. Place torn bagels in bottom of buttered pan. Sprinkle chopped onion on top of bagels. Dot the top of the casserole with softened cream cheese. Tear up ham and spread over casserole. In a bowl or blender, mix eggs, milk, pepper and mustard. Pour blended egg mixture over casserole. Top with shredded cheese. Cover tightly with foil and place in refrigerator for a minimum of 2 hours or overnight. 


Take casserole out of the fridge and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake 45 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.