Hawaiian Zucchini Bread

I love baking quick breads. This recipe comes together quickly with ingredients you probably have in your pantry.

Adding wet to dry
Freshly grated zucchini
Don’t skimp on the zucchini
Pineapple makes this bread
Ready for the oven


1 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

3/4 sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 medium size zucchini, you will want 1 cup grated

1 8 ounce can crushed pineapple, drained well

1/2 cup golden raisins

1/2 cup chopped pecans, optional

Hot from the oven
Watch out! It vanishes before your eyes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray loaf pan with nonstick spray.

Whisk together dry ingredients. Beat eggs and vanilla and add them to flour mixture. Add grated zucchini (I used a box grater but good processor will do). Incorporate pineapple, raisins and pecans. Pour into loaf pan and bake for 40-45 minutes or until tester comes out clean. Cool in pan about 15 minutes and place on a plate/tray. Slice and serve.

It’s absolutely delicious warm from the oven, just as tasty cool. Enjoy! This recipe can easily be doubled. Make this recipe and put one loaf in the freezer for later.

Lizz’s Tropical Carrot Cake Cupcakes

I first met my dear friend Lizz volunteering at our sons school PTA’s. We have been friends for many years and recently got together for the first time in 15 years. We do stay in close contact via Facebook and text messages. I wanted to make her something special for a birthday she recently celebrated. With help from family members, I found out what her favorite flavor of cake was, I made cupcakes and named my recipe for her. Cupcakes travel better than a cakes, so Lizz received belated birthday cupcakes.

Thanks Morgan!


1 cup flour

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 eggs, beaten

3/4 cup vegetable oil

1 small can of crushed pineapple, drained

1 pound of carrots, peeled and grated

1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line your cupcake pan with liners.

My sweet friend Lizz! 💜💜💜

In a mixing bowl, whisk dry ingredients together. Mix in eggs and oil in dry ingredients. Stir in pineapple and carrots. Add chopped pecans and combine. Fill cupcake liners about 3/4 full and bake 18-20 minutes, or until done. Cool completely and frost with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting. Enjoy!

Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting


1 stick of unsalted butter

1 8 ounce block cream cheese

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon coconut extract

1 pinch of salt

1 pound of powdered sugar

Shredded coconut, if desired

Blend butter and cream cheese together. Add the extracts and salt. Gradually on low speed add the powdered sugar. Pipe on cupcakes. I used a Wilton 1M tip. Sprinkle flaked coconut on top of cupcakes.

Lizz’s beautiful Mom, Maria. This is proof that you cannot be sad holding a cupcake.

Pina Colada King Cake 

I love a party. Never have been to Mardi Gras but I have a dear friend, Lisa Beasley Thaxton who lives in New Orleans. She was the one that told me that king cakes come in many flavors. I tried making a bananas foster one yesterday and the filling was too wet. It was a disaster. So today I made a Pina Colada King Cake and it was a success. 

For the Cake

3 1/2 cups of flour

1/2 cup of sugar

1 package of rapid rise yeast

1 teaspoon salt

1 egg

2 teaspoons of vanilla, coconut or pineapple extract

1 cup warm milk, not hot

6 Tablespoons butter, melted

Put all dry ingredients in the bowl of your stand mixer. Add egg, warm milk and butter. Using your dough hook attachment, mix on low for 2-3 minutes, scraping any flour off the sides of the bowl in the dough. Continue to mix on medium speed for 8 minutes. Transfer dough to a large well oiled bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Put in in a warm spot until the dough doubles in size. On a floured surface, roll dough into an 8″ x 20″ rectangle. Add filling. 

1 8 ounce block of cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup sweetened coconut 

3/4 cup crushed pineapple, squeezed dry

1/2 cup sugar

2 teaspoons of vanilla, coconut or pineapple extract

Blend together and spread on top of rectangular dough leaving an inch all the way around. Roll dough toward you and make an oval. Pinch ends together and make sure your center hole is large. It will close up while baking. Cover with foil and and let dough double in size again. It could take an hour. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Once doubled, place on baking sheet seam side down and brush with an egg wash (beaten egg). I baked my cake on parchment paper. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until golden brown. 


2 cups of powdered sugar

2 teaspoons of either coconut, vanilla or pineapple

4 Tablespoons of milk or more to get a thick consistency 

Yellow, green and purple sugar

Plastic baby (do not bake in cake!)
Mix ingredients together and put on warm, not hot cake. Sprinkle on the colored sugars and let the recipient hid the baby. 

Mom’s Orange Jello Salad

I grew up eating this jello salad as a child in the late 1960’s.  My Mom made this salad a lot. This is definitely a 60’s retro recipe.  Back in the day, meals, especially holiday meals had jello salads on the table.  I usually do not like fruit in jello but since it’s crushed pineapple and mandarin oranges, I do make the exception here. You will find this orange jello salad tangy, light and refreshing. Enjoy this blast from the past.

1 box of orange jello (6 ounces), you can substitute sugar free if you wish just use 6 ounces of dry jello

6 ounces of frozen orange juice concentrate, I could not find a 6 ounce can, they were all 12 ounces so, measure out 3/4 cup.  Make juice with the leftovers or put back into the freezer for the next jello salad

1 can of crushed pineapple (20 ounces), do not drain

2 cans of mandarin oranges (15 ounces), drained

Whip cream, optional
Pour dry jello in a 13 x 9 pan. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil. I used a Pyrex measuring cup and microwaved it for about 3 minutes. Pour boiling water in jello pan and whisk until dissolved. Add your frozen orange juice concentrate.  I cut it up so it would dissolve faster. Next mix in your crushed pineapple, whisking to blend and lastly add the mandarin oranges.  Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until set. This makes a great addition to any family meal as a side dish or even as a light dessert.

Aloha Chicken Salad


Would you like to have lunch in Hawaii?  Me too!  I have used some of Hawaii’s best flavors to create a delicious chicken salad. Enjoy it on a sandwich, on a  bed of lettuce or a lettuce cup. It’s delicious. You will be doing the hula dance after tasting this!  

Chicken Salad:

1 rotisserie chicken, I buy mine at wholesale clubs, they are bigger by a pound and less expensive

3 stalks of celery, sliced

3  green onions, sliced with kitchen shears, green and white parts

1 cup of macadamia nuts, rough chopped

1 cup of pineapple tidbits, drained

Take the skin off of the chicken and chop into bite size pieces. Add the other ingredients and mix well.

Lime Cilantro Dressing:

3/4 cup mayonnaise 

3/4 cup sour cream

2 Tablespoon of fresh cilantro, optional if you hate it!

Juice of 1 lime

Season with salt and pepper to taste 
In a separate bowl, combine mayonnaise and sour cream. Mix in cilantro. Microwave you lime for 15 seconds in the microwave (this will make the juice pour out of it)  Add the juice of the lime and combine. Add to chicken salad and toss to combine. Enjoy on a sandwich, wrap, lettuce cup or just with a fork!  Aloha!


Paradise Piña Colada Cupcakes

Its hot, tropical temperatures and I think it’s time for a Piña Colada in the form of a cupcake. Escape to this yummy cupcake and your tastebuds will be transported to delightful adventure.

Cupcake Ingredients:

1 2/3 cup flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup packed brown sugar, I used light

1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted

1 egg, I used extra large, room temperature 

1 8 ounce can crushed pineapple, do not drain

1/2 cup coconut milk

1/2 cup coconut rum, I used Malibu *Plus additional for brushing on top of cupcakes

1/2 cup coconut, shredded, sweet

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line tin with liners. In a medium bowl, add flour, baking soda and powder, sugar and salt and whisk together. Set aside. Combine melted butter with brown sugar together. 
Using your mixer, combine egg, crushed pineapple, coconut rum, coconut milk. Add the brown sugar butter mixture and combine. Add the dry ingredients and mix well. Stir in the shredded coconut. Fill cupcake liners about 2/3 full. Bake for 19 minutes or until cake tester is in inserted and comes out clean.  *As soon as the cupcakes come out of the oven, brush the tops of the cupcakes with additional Malibu rum. Cool completely before frosting.  Yields 16 cupcakes. 

Coconut Colada Whip Cream Frosting:

8 ounces cream cheese, room temp

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon coconut extract or coconut flavor

1/2 cup powdered sugar 

3 Tablespoons Malibu Rum, optional

16 ounces of heavy whipping cream

Additional coconut to add on top of frosting. 

Pineapple Chunks, optional garnish 

Maraschino Cherries, optional garnish

In a chilled mixing bowl that has been chilled for 25 minutes, combine cream cheese and extracts. Add powdered sugar and rum.  Add heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks have formed. Pipe on to cupcakes and garnish. 

  Toni with her second cupcake! 
Thank you Toni for letting me take your picture while enjoying these yummy cupcakes. 

Adapted from The Crumby Cupcake

Plated Piña Colada

If you like Piña Coladas….you will love this dessert. Light, creamy and dreamy with some Malibu Coconut Rum thrown in for rummy fun. Decorate with coconut whip cream for extra yumminess!

Tart Shell Ingredients:
2 packages of Sandies Shortbread Cookies (1 package and one sleeve of cookies from the other pack-7 cookies)
4 Tablespoons of butter, melted

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Put cookies in a food processor and process until cookies are fine crumbs. Put in a bowl and add melted butter. Mix and press into a tart pan. Bake for 7 minutes. Let cool completely.

Piña Colada:
1 8 ounce block of cream cheese
8 ounces of heavy whipping cream
1 – 1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar*
4 shot glasses of Malibu Rum *can substitute 2 teaspoons of rum extract
1 8 ounce can of crushed pineapple, drained well, no excess juice

In a mixing bowl that had been chilled 30 minutes in the refrigerator, blend cold cream cheese. Pour in whipping cream and blend to stiff consistency. Add powdered sugar, taste after adding one cup. Add another half cup of powdered sugar to achieve the sweetness you desire. Mix in rum or rum extract and crushed pineapple. Blend well. Pour into cooled tart crust and refrigerate.

Pineapple Tibits
Pineapple Ring
Coconut Whip Cream
Paper Umbrella

Coconut Whip Cream:
4 ounces heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2-3 teaspoons of coconut extract

In a chilled mixing bowl, whip heavy whipping cream to stiff peaks. Add sugar and extract. Pipe on top of tart and decorate with pineapple.





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Peggy’s Hummingbird Cake

When our group decided to have May be our Mother’s Favorite Dish, there was no doubt in my mind what I would make. My Mom loved Hummingbird Cake. LOVED it! This was the first cake I ever baked from scratch at 20 years old. This cake has a lot of family memories for me. I had a difficult time trying to decide how to decorate it but when I think of my Mom, I think of beauty and elegance.

A little history on the Hummingbird Cake. It first appeared in Southern Living magazine in 1978. It was submitted to the magazine by Mrs. L. H. Wiggins of Greensboro, North Carolina. There are many ways to make a Hummingbird Cake. This was her favorite way I made this recipe for her. For you Mom ❤️.

3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon soda
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, I use Saigon cinnamon
3 eggs beaten
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla, I use Mexican
1 8 ounce can crushed pineapple, not drained
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
3 cups very ripe (not rotten) bananas, rough mash, not mush should have some chunks

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 3 9″ pans.

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add eggs and oil, stir to combine. Do NOT use a mixer! Add vanilla, pineapple, pecans and bananas.

Divide batter equally into the 3 cake pans. Bake for 30 minutes or until done. Cool in pans for 10 minutes, remove and cool completely. Frost cake and keep refrigerated.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
2 8 ounce packages cream cheese, softened
2 sticks of butter
2 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla
2 pounds of powdered sugar

Combine cream cheese and butter and beat until smooth. Add vanilla. Slowly add powdered sugar, mixing until light and fluffy. This will make enough frosting for an 3 layer cake that is not decorated.


Banana Split Banana Bread

This is a very moist banana bread. Everything you love about a banana split is in this bread. Chocolate, cherries, pineapple and banana!

1 stick butter, melted
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 t vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1 t soda
1/2 t salt
1/2 cup sour cream
2-3 ripe bananas, mushed
1/2 cup pecans
1/2 cup crushed pineapple, drained
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
1/2 cup maraschino cherries, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a loaf pan.

In a large bowl, stir together melted butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla, mix well. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt. Stir this into the butter mixture. Fold in sour cream, bananas, chocolate chips, nuts and cherries.

Bake for 50-60 minutes or until done. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack completely.