Posted by: Lauren | January 20, 2011

new year, new recipes

Hi guys! I know it’s been awhile! Part of me can’t believe it’s been over a month since I posted something new, and another part of me feels like it really has been awhile. Anyone else ever feel like that? Like time goes by at warp speed, and yet it doesn’t? Hah, all that to say, I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season and a great start to your new year-we certainly did! God’s been teaching us so much this past month, and I think He’s got some exciting things in store, so I’ll be sure to share soon! (No, I’m not preggers.) I’m currently sitting on the couch completely stuffed from devouring Jenna’s Creamy White Chicken Chili.


This, my friends, is what you call a total crowd pleaser (in this case, crowd consisting of Joe and me, but still). So easy to make, such a great flavor, and very satisfying. Thanks Katie for my fun soup bowls!

I’ve got some recipes to share too!


Turkey and Oat Burgers

You may be thinking, “Oats? That’s odd.” But I assure you, you will never taste, feel, or see an oat in this burger while eating them. I passed this recipe on to a friend, and she made them twice already. We love ‘em!

Adapted from Cooking Light

  • 1.5 lbs ground turkey
  • 1/3 cup salsa (used Trader Joe’s fire roasted tomato salsa)
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1.25 tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • sprinkle garlic powder
  • 1 egg

Mix all ingredients together and form into 8 patties. Cook on preheated nonstick sprayed griddle or large nonstick frying pan for about 6 minutes on each side.

We grilled some onions alongside to top the burgers-we highly recommend it. 🙂

We’d also recommend eating this for dessert:


Thanks to Pippi and Tim for my fun ice cream bowls! She knows me so well. This was just two bananas pureed in the food processor until creamy (no liquids), with a small spoonful of peanut butter, and at the end, I pulsed in some chocolate chunks. (In case you don’t read many blogs, I’m not the creator of this! It’s been around for awhile!) 🙂


Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs

Joe and I really enjoyed this, and I believe our awesome friend Amelia did as well. Right Meals? So easy, comforting, and delish. Please, serve this with toasted sour dough bread. Dip, crunch, chew, savor. You won’t regret it.

  • 5 chicken thighs
  • 1 large onion, cut in half lengthwise, and sliced
  • 3 large carrots, cut in large chunks
  • 2 celery stalks, cut in large chunks
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can Italian stewed tomatoes
  • 3 red potatoes
  • sprinkle sea salt
  • generous shakes black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • Shake of dried Rosemary
  • Shake of dried Thyme

    Place cans of tomatoes in slow cooker, then veggies, then chicken, sprinkled with minced garlic and seasonings. Cook on low for 5-6 hours.

    Does raw chicken gross you out? Sorry. But layer like so:



    I love feeling all domestic and making things from scratch. This was my first time making apple sauce. We had some apples that weren’t all that flavorful to eat on their own and getting old (they were organic red delicious apples). This recipe is easy and super healthy as you can leave the peels on-where the fiber is. 


Homemade Apple Sauce

  • 5 apples, chopped (not peeled!)
  • juice of two lemons
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 packet of stevia (or 2 tsp. regular sugar)
  • 1-2 tsp cinnamon (I didn’t measure and dumped in way too much)

    Cook chopped apples in lemon juice, water, stevia and cinnamon on medium high for 5-10 minutes. Transfer apples to a food processor and process until smooth.



It didn’t make a ton, which could partially be because I stood over the stove and kept taking chunks of apple out and into my mouth. Yum.



Homemade Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

I’ve been inspired to make my own PB cups after seeing different recipes on blogs for over a year now. You can feel so much better about these as you can make them entirely without sugar, and one is really quite satisfying.



Homemade Dark Chocolate

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 30 drops liquid stevia*

Melt coconut oil in a small saucepan and add the rest of the ingredients. Stir until smooth.

*If you don’t have stevia, you can just sweeten to taste with honey. All I do is add sweetener and keep taking little licks until it’s where I want it-which is probably comparable to 70% dark chocolate.

Homemade Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

1. Place muffin liners in 9 muffin cups.

2.Prepare dark chocolate as directed above, spooning a tablespoon in each muffin cup. Place in fridge until chocolate is set.

3.Then add a tsp of peanut butter to the center of each cup, and cover with another tablespoon of melted chocolate. Refrigerate until chocolate has set again.


Check out the giant tub of coconut oil! Love this stuff–so good for you, not only for cooking and baking, but for hair, skin, etc. (Obviously, don’t use the same container for your body that you do for your cooking! Ew, no?) I order mine from Vitacost which seems to be a good deal.

Do not make 12 cups-they turn out too thin, obviously I learned through trial and error. Stick with 9.


My first batch turned out looking rather ugly on top, not sure why, but doesn’t matter- we loooove these! Joe demolishes them, and he is a hardcore Reese’s fan, but loves my healthy dark chocolate version! That’s saying a lot! Several others have tried and loved as well.

This is Joe’s cute picture of my ugly first batch of peanut butter cups:


God has encouraged me so much with these verses-I thought they were so great for the New Year.

Isaiah 43:18-19 "Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland."





  1. Yummers!!!!!! Those Reese’s cups looks AWESOME!!! Richard would love those too. Glad you explained how to get the crinkly look on the outside……always wondered that since I don’t think they sell those cute little black papers……muffin cups…..genious! Oh, the Cowfish restaurant was super yummy! I ordered a combo with yummy wonton soup with lots of mushrooms, spicy tuna roll and 3 pieces of Nigiri….very good! My friend who doesn’t eat sushi ate this unbelieveable burger that was cooked perfectly…..light pink and juicy and had fried egg, shaved ham, signature “cowfish sauce”, jalepeno bacon. It looked awesome and was huge and she ate every bit of it. It was called the “Arnold Hamandegger” and came with skinny little fries. Not a healthy meal, but she was craving a burger. It looks so good and I think it was on an onion roll. The service was awesome…..manager even came over and said he had heard it was our first time and gave us a card for a free appetizer. Nice tough. We’ll definitely go when you visit. When’s that????? Just sayin’……

    • Ok, I officially cannot wait to come. Oh man, remember how fun it is to come down at spring break? Being with you guys, walking in your neighborhood with all the blooming trees, perfect weather. You described everything so amazingly from that restaurant. I love your comments!!! So nice of that manager too. Yes-genius-totally not my idea! Someday I’ll think of something that brilliant. 😉 Love you soo much!

  2. […] Now, obviously, not everything is in great condition, but the bananas alone were worth $1.49, and when they start to turn brown, I’ll happily peel them and place them in a bag for frozen bananas, which we go through like crazy, what with green protein smoothies, peanut butter banana smoothies, and banana soft serve. […]

  3. […] Plan 11.7-11.11 Monday: Turkey Oat Burgers with roasted brussel sprouts Go to: TRADER JOE’S Tuesday: Tempeh Tamale Pie *Need 8 oz pkg […]

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