Easy Empanadas for an Quick Meal

Would you look at this?  Kids are back in school and I have a little bit of time to update the blog!  I actually recorded this baking tutorial while all 8 of them were home, and they were shockingly quiet – or outside in the pool the whole time.

Empanadas were introduced to our family last year through our au pair Tatiane who was from Brazil and since their introduction, I have, of course, put my own healthy spin on this quick and easy meal.



Preheat oven to 425

2 cups of almond milk – bring to a simmer (NOT BOILING!), take off stove.

Add 1/1/2 cups of lard (or bacon grease) and 2 TB Butter.  Let melt and cool.

Add 5 tea of yeast.  Stir.  Add 5 cups of flour and 1-2 tea salt (depending on how salty you like your food).  Stir until incorporated.  Kneed this mixture for about 5 minutes and let rest and rise for at least an hour.

Make filling – Check Pinterest for recipes or the fridge for leftovers.

Roll out small pieces of dough into a disk shape.  Fill with whatever filling you’ve made. Fold over, crimp edges if you want to, put on a baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown.  Enjoy!

Just keep livin!

Healthy Sweet Potato Dark Chocolate Muffins

New recipe for y’all as the school year ends – which is today – you can start those prayers now please.  These are my go to muffins to make for the kids in the morning before they head off to school.  Easy, tasty, low mess, healthy sweet potato muffins.  The best part, as always, is that you can make them in one bowl.  Don’t we all love that? Enjoy!

2 big sweet potatoes – baked at 400 for about an hour – until soft.  Cool, remove peels and mash in a large bowl.

Add –

1 cup coconut oil or applesauce

1 cup almond milk

1/1/2 cups maple syrup

1 tea salt

2 tea cinnamon

4 tea baking powder

4 tea baking soda

2 tea vanilla

4 cups flour

2 TB Chinese 5 spice

Mix all together well.

Add dark chocolate chips, wheat germ, flax seed or chia seeds if you want.

Grease muffin pans and fill about halfway.  Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.



A Healthier Carrot Cake Recipe

My dear husband, bless his heart, baked me a carrot cake for my birthday and even agreed to let the camera roll in the process.

He did a great job; however, I figured you might want a few more specifics like the quantities needed for many of the ingredients so here is the detailed recipe.

This cake was fantastic, and I’m not just saying that because I love carrot cake.  You will not miss any of the oil or sugar (which are substituted) – I promise.  The cake is moist, full of flavor, bursting with carrots and pecans, and is somewhat healthy – minus the frosting.  Sorry, we forgot to get a picture of the finished product before we dove in and enjoyed.


1 cup maple syrup
3/4 cup coconut oil – warmed and cooled
1/2 cup applesauce
4 eggs
3 cups of shredded carrots
2 1/2 cups flour
2 tea cinnamon
2 1/2 tea baking soda
1 cup chopped pecans.

Mix first three ingredients together. Add the eggs. Mix well. Add the carrots and mix. Combine flour, cinnamon and baking soda and slowly add to the liquids. Mix well. Stir in the pecans. Grease 3 cake pans and bake at 350 for about 20 minutes. Let cool before frosting.

1 stick of butter
1 package of cream cheese
1 tea vanilla
24 ounces of powdered sugar
1 cup chopped pecans.
Mix first two ingredients well. Add vanilla. Mix. Add sugar slowly. Mix well and then add 1 cup of pecans.



Just keep livin!




Meet Some of my Favorite Cookbooks

Today I’m sharing with you four of my all time favorite cookbooks.

I get it, many of you no longer use cookbooks like we all did twenty years ago with the rise of online sites like Pinterest, and allrecipes.com which can provide any 5 star recipe for anything at any time of day but… there are some strange souls still out there, just like myself, who enjoy nothing more than curling up with a real cookbook, in all of its tattered, splattered and mangled glory. I probably own 50+ cookbooks – most purchased at Goodwill or garage sales, including two of the ones mentioned today. All of these can be purchased used on Amazon for under $2.00 – totally worth the pure joy (and tastiness) they’ll bring to your life. Continue reading “Meet Some of my Favorite Cookbooks”