Cream Cheese & Pumpkin Pie

I made this recipe for the first time today and I have decided it will be a keeper!

Ingredients:

  • 1 refrigerated pie crust or you can make your own from scratch like me which you can find here
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 3 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
  • 1 package (8 oz) of cream cheese, softened
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 can (15 oz) pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1 tablespoon of milk

 

Directions:

Heat oven to 350°F.
Place pie crust in 9-inch glass pie plate as directed on the package for one-crust filled pie.
Bake about 10 minutes or until light golden brown.

In a large bowl, beat sugar, flour and cream cheese with electric mixer on low speed or until smooth.

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Reserve 1/2 cup in a small bowl.

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Add remaining ingredients except the milk to cream cheese mixture in the large mixing bowl.

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Beat on medium speed until smooth.

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Stir milk into small cream cheese mixture.

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Pour pumpkin mixture into the pie shell and set aside.

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Slowly spoon cream cheese mixture over the pumpkin mixture. Swirl together the mixture for a marbled design.

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Cover edge of crust with strips of foil to prevent excessive browning. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove foil for the last 15 minutes of baking.
Cool for 30 minutes and cover loosely and refrigerate for at least four hours before serving.

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A classic fall favorite.

Xoxo,

– R. Vargas

Pot Roast

Here in North Texas, the weather has been a bit cooler lately so it’s time for stews, casseroles, and comfort food.
If you follow me on Instagram or Snapchat, you may have noticed that my crock pot has become my best friend. If you don’t already have a crock pot, I advise you to go and get one! I honestly think everyone should own one, especially if you are a new wife, have children, or retired. It saves so much time!

There are many different Pot Roast recipes out there but this is the one that I enjoy the most! You can add in or substitute any vegetable, herbs or spices too!

Ingredients:

  • Baby carrots
  • One celery stalk
  • Small red potatoes
  • One onion
  • Boneless beef chuck roast
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of Onion Powder
  • 1 teaspoon of Garlic Salt
  • 1 teaspoon of Lemon Pepper
  • 1 cup of water

Directions:

1. Cut vegetables in half.

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2. Place chuck roast in the crock pot and add in vegetables. Sprinkle salt & pepper all over.

3. Mix seasonings with the one cup of water and stir.

4. Pour mixture over the chuck roast and vegetables.

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5. Cover the crock pot and cook on LOW for 8-10 hours or HIGH for 4-6 hours.


Enjoy!

Xoxo,

 

– R. Vargas

 

Jalapeño Poppers 

Hi everyone!

On today’s blog, I’m going to share how to make Jalapeño Poppers.
I thought it was one of those recipes everyone knew how to make or even heard of but apparently it’s not as widespread as I thought.

This is such an easy recipe ever and if you’re ever invited to a cook out, gathering, potluck, etc. and you’re low on funds or time, this is the best appetizer to take.

Ingredients:

  • Jalapeños (As many as you desire)
  • Cream cheese
  • Bacon

Directions:

  1. Wash your jalapeños and slice them in half. (The more seeds you leave in, the more heat the jalapeños will have.)
  2. Spoon cream cheese evenly into the jalapeño halves.
  3. Cut bacon strips in half and wrap around jalapeños. (I secure the bacon strips with toothpicks.)
  4. Place on the grill for a few minutes, or place on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven on 375°F for 25 minutes.

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Once done, remember to remove the toothpicks!
Xoxo,

– R. Vargas

 

Chicken Parmesan Spaghetti

While scrolling through Pinterest last night, I came across this recipe and figured I would try it since I had the majority of ingredients on hand.

I love chicken parmesan but have never attempted to make it because I did not want to mess up a classic. This recipe was simple enough to help encourage me to try it on my own finally.

You can find the original recipe here but I tweaked it a bit so the following will be my recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 4 chicken breast halves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup Crispy Fried Onions (I used the fried onions instead of the breadcrumbs since I didn’t have any.)
  • 1 tablespoon of Kraft Seasoned Grated Parmesan Hot Pepper Trio
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 cups of Farfalle Pasta (AKA Bowtie Pasta)
  • 2 cups marinara or spaghetti sauce, warmed
  • ½ cup olive oil

Directions:

Place water in a large pot and add a dash of salt and bring to a boil.

While water is beginning to boil, prep the chicken.  I used a rolling pin to pound the chicken to be a little thinner. I sprinkled the pounded chicken on both sides with a little salt and Kraft Seasoned Grated Parmesan .

 

In a small bowl, whisk the eggs together.

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In a separate bowl, stir together the Fried Onion Crisps (remember I used these instead of breadcrumbs so I had to crush them), 1/2 cup Parmesan, a pinch of salt & pepper.

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First dip the chicken breast into the egg mixture and then into the Fried Onion Crisps mixture.
Once the chicken breast is fully coated, place into in a frying pan large enough to hold two chicken breast at the same time. Place burner over medium-high heat, warm the oil until it is shimmering.

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Place the pasta in the boiling water and cook according to package directions or whatever your liking. Warm the sauce in a large saucepan.

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Fry the chicken until crisp and golden brown and cooked through, turning once, about 5 minutes total. Transfer to paper towels on a sturdy plate to drain.
Drain the pasta and add to the warm sauce. Toss to coat.

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Slice the chicken breasts into strips and transfer the spaghetti to a warm platter.

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Top with the sliced chicken breasts and the remaining Parmesan.

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Bon Appétit!

– R.Vargas

Oreo White Chocolate Chip Cookies

It’s a rainy Sunday here in North Texas and it’s perfect weather for staying in and baking.

One of my favorite bloggers Rhanda from Georgia Wife Life  shared a recipe on her blog the other day that I was really wanting to try so this is my post sharing her recipe but you should head on over to her blog for more yummy recipes!

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup of butter (1 1/2 stick of butter)
  • 1/2 tsp of baking powder
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 3/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups of flour
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp of vanilla
  • 1 cup of White Chocolate Chips
  • 10 Oreo Cookies, crushed (I used Double Stuffed Oreo’s)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Place Parchment paper on cookie trays and set aside.

Combine all dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. (Flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.)

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In a separate mixing bowl beat butter, sugar, and brown sugar together until fluffy.

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Beat in eggs and vanilla.

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Slowly beat in dry ingredients until all combined.

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Add Oreo’s and White Chocolate Chips until combined.

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I used my cookie scooper to place dough onto my cookie trays but you can roll yours into balls if you do not have a cookie scooper. Remember to give the cookies enough space to bake evenly.

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Bake for 10-12 minutes or until you see a nice brown color. Make sure you check the bottom of the cookies!
Afterwards, place the cookies on a cooling rack for a few minutes and enjoy!

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Thanks again to Rhanda for sharing this recipe!

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas

Italian Pepperoni-Vegetable Quiche

When I originally started prepping this quiche, I was going off of a Pillsbury recipe but then started improvising after the first two steps.

Even though this was my first attempt at a quiche, I was very proud and it’s a great breakfast/brunch meal you can eat off of for a few days as long as you keep it refrigerated.

Ingredients:

  • 1 box Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts, softened as directed on the box
  • 1/4th cup of mushrooms
  • 1/4th cup of asparagus
  • 1/2 cup of chopped seeded tomato
  • 1 1/2 cups of shredded mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup of sliced turkey pepperoni
  • 5 eggs
  • 3/4 cup of milk
  • 1 teaspoon of Italian Seasoning
  • a pinch of salt & pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

You can change the vegetables to your liking.*

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Place pie crust in ungreased 9-inch pie plate as directed on the box for One-Crust Filled Pie.

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Chop your vegetables and turkey pepperoni.

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Sprinkle 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese in crust. Top with tomato and turkey pepperoni. Spoon mushrooms and asparagus over turkey pepperoni and drizzle the olive oil over the vegetables.

Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.

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In a small bowl, beat eggs, milk and Italian Seasoning.

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Pour egg mixture over cheese.

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Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and knife inserted near center comes out clean.

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Cool 5 minutes before serving and enjoy!

Xoxo,

– Rocio A. Vargas

Health & Happiness Update Pt. II 

This has been my second month having a gym membership and trying to live a healthier lifestyle.

Last month my main goal was to just be active and my mission was accomplished because I joined a gym!
This months goal was to research healthier snacks and meal prep plans.
I decided to cut back on junk food which is only difficult when I am craving Flamin’ Hot Cheetos.

Since I already pack lunches for work, I decided I would try to pack healthier lunches and incorporate more fruits and vegetables along with healthier snacks.

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Honey flavored Noosa yogurt with strawberries & granola.

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Baked chicken with vegetables.

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First attempt at prepping my meal.

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A homemade torta which wasn’t all that healthy but I did add some vegetables at the bottom.

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Baked vegetables drizzled with olive oil & sprinkled with a little salt & pepper.

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Baked drumsticks and veggies with a Cesar salad and a fruit cup.

I try to prep my meal the night before so all I have to do in the morning is gather everything in my lunch bag and head to work.

A few things that have worked for me have been to stock up on frozen chicken breast, drumsticks, tenderloins, thighs, etc. and divide the pieces in a Ziploc bag and leave one bag out to defrost and cook. Then I place the rest in the freezer so I don’t have to cook them all at the same time.

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I also bought frozen vegetables and bake them in the oven instead of steaming them. I feel it holds in more flavor.

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I even found myself ordering from the “Lighter Side,” of menus while dining out. (Pats myself on the back.)

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Baja Chicken from Cheddar’s

Another accomplishment for me this month was working out at the gym while my mother shopped around at our favorite thrift store. (There is a Planet Fitness in the same shopping center as that thrift store and instead of shopping, I dropped my mom off and headed to the gym.)
Since I have the PF Black Card membership I am able to visit any PF location so I made good use of it.

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I also added healthier snacks to my “snack shack,” at work.

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My drawer AKA snack shack at work.

I also had a doctors appointment this month and had some blood work done.
I was sure my doctor would tell me that I was borderline diabetic or had a high cholesterol but to my surprise she commended me on exercising and on eating healthier.
A few days later when my blood work results came back, she called me and told me everything looked great and to keep up the great work!
I was so relieved. I just need to keep this up and continue to make healthier choices.

With the small changes I have made, I have noticed my hair thickening, my face being less oily, and less feelings of fatigue.

 

Any healthy recipes or tips you can share with me?

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas