Ally's Sweet and Savory Eats

Friday, June 23, 2017

Open Faced Protein-Packed Breakfast Sandwiches

This post is sponsored on behalf of Bob's Red Mill.
All opinions are my own.

Open Faced Protein-Packed Breakfast Sandwiches...a cinnamon and vanilla infused hearty waffle, havarti cheese, a fried egg and crispy bacon!  Simply the best breakfast to start off your morning. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I love anything to do with breakfast.

Early mornings {yes, I'm a morning gal}, frothy warm coffees or cappuccinos, early sunshine, dippy eggs, sweet sugary donuts, the peaceful quiet before all is woken, salty bacon, easy conversation...my list is endless.

I love the simplicities of early mornings.  I want to wake up, dive into some exercise, read my devotional, perhaps catch a minute or two to work on this blog, watch the news, listen to a podcast or read my book in peace.

I'll be honest.  This doesn't always happen.  Some mornings I get in exercise and maybe a minute or two of reading before the first kiddo is up.  Other mornings I get it all in!  Just yesterday I went to pour myself a cup of coffee {let's be honest, a bit of coffee with my creamer} and I just happened to be holding the coffee mug UPSIDE DOWN, only to realize two seconds into pouring that it was going all over my countertop.

Good morning to ME.

Open Faced Protein-Packed Breakfast Sandwiches...a cinnamon and vanilla infused hearty waffle, havarti cheese, a fried egg and crispy bacon!  Simply the best breakfast to start off your morning. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

After a LOT of trial and error over the years {almost 36 years} I've come to realize that my body needs a hearty breakfast.  When I fail to plan or just get plain lazy I'm ravenous by 10 a.m. and I'm reaching for a second breakfast.

Which in turn just defeats the purpose of breakfast.

In my younger days I could grab a granola bar while walking out the door and I was fine. Now?  It doesn't work so well.  I find now I do best when I eat something more substancial. Greek yogurt with granola, hearty whole wheat toast with peanut butter and sliced bananas or an egg scramble with all the fixings.

I have forever been a fan of Bob's Red Mill products.  Did you happen to see the post I did for them back in March featuring my creative {at least for...ME, it was creative} Spring Flower Cookie Garden Puzzle?  It's a bit of a show stopper!

Open Faced Protein-Packed Breakfast Sandwiches...a cinnamon and vanilla infused hearty waffle, havarti cheese, a fried egg and crispy bacon!  Simply the best breakfast to start off your morning. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

When they reached out to me again I jumped on board immediately.  Why wouldn't I?  They provide high-quality, minimally-processed products that go directly from the mill to your table.  Over 400 of their products are certified organic and use non-GMO whole grains and their milling, testing, packaging and fulfillment are all done under one roof in the beautiful Portland, Oregon {that city is on my bucket list!}.

They recently unveiled several new products one of which spoke to me in my dreams...their Protein Pancake & Waffle Mix.

Umm...hello, I have three kids.  They would choose to eat pancakes or waffles every single day of their lives if I let them.  Getting more protein into their diet and mine early in the day has always been a goal.

This mix is chock-full of wholesome protein from whey and peas {who knew?}, along with added stone-ground whole wheat pastry flour and psyllium husk powder.  This special blend gives them a good source of dietary fiber, so you can eat pancakes or waffles guilt-free!

Open Faced Protein-Packed Breakfast Sandwiches...a cinnamon and vanilla infused hearty waffle, havarti cheese, a fried egg and crispy bacon!  Simply the best breakfast to start off your morning. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

So remember how I was saying I most definitely need a hearty breakfast to make my day great? Well, you're in luck.  These Open Faced Protein-Packed Breakfast Sandwiches do just that.

A cinnamon and vanilla infused protein waffle, a slice of havarti cheese, a fried egg and crisp bacon. Eat this with a fork and knife or dig right in and just take a bite.  It will be messy, but it will be worth it!

There are over 30 grams of protein in this breakfast.  Can you believe that?  And trust me, you will not feel stuffed at the end.  It may look super indulgent, but it tastes light.  I cooked this up two mornings in a row and would have probably continued making them through out the week, but alas I was out of town.

To make things super easy - make the whole batch of waffles one day, along with the bacon and stick them in the fridge for the week ahead.  All that leaves you in the morning is heating those up, frying up an egg and getting a slice of cheese out of the fridge!  It really does come together in a simple way.

Open Faced Protein-Packed Breakfast Sandwiches...a cinnamon and vanilla infused hearty waffle, havarti cheese, a fried egg and crispy bacon!  Simply the best breakfast to start off your morning. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

You can stock up on Bob's Red Mill Protein Pancake & Waffle Mix HERE.  A super great gift idea for a college student moving away this summer or a friend who has kids like me who love breakfast food!

When I don't have Bob's Red Mill products around, I simply swap out half of my traditional all-purpose flour for a hearty whole wheat and add a little ground flax seed to boot.  Pump up those mixes!

A special thanks to Bob's Red Mill for sponsoring this post.  What a great company!

Yield: 2

Open Faced Protein-Packed Breakfast Sandwiches

prep time: 5 MINScook time: 15 MINStotal time: 20 mins
I love hearty breakfasts. Something that can hold me over during a busy morning until lunch. This fluffy protein waffle is topped with havarti cheese, a fried egg and bacon!

INGREDIENTS:

Waffle Recipe

  • 2 eggs
  • 4 strips of bacon, cooked
  • 2 sandwiches slices of havarti cheese
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 t. pepper

INSTRUCTIONS:


  1. In a bowl combine the waffle mix, water, melted butter or oil, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir until it just comes togegher.
  2. Ladel the batter into a hot, greased waffle maker {you should have enough batter for two waffles}. Cook to desired doneness.
  3. While the waffle is cooking fry your egg, adding salt and pepper and bacon in the same skillet. Again, cook the egg to desired doneness {over-easy, over-hard, etc.} and the same with the bacon {soft or crispy}.
  4. When the waffle is done, top with a slice of cheese, the fried egg and two slices of the cooked bacon. Serve warm.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Monday, June 19, 2017

Creamy Broccoli Salad

This summer side dish staple is one of my favorites.
Eat up your greens!

Creamy Broccoli Salad...with a sweet crunch in a creamy dressing this is the perfect summer side dish! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Here's the thing.

Sometimes my blog posts are planned out weeks in advance.  Some of them are sponsored by wonderful companies and require a lot more work behind the scenes.  Some of them are methodically planned out to "peak" at the right season.

And there are recipes that become blog posts without much thought, nor planning, research or development.

Take for instance this Creamy Broccoli Salad.  I was standing at my kitchen window {doing dishes...ugh!} when I looked at my garden in the backyard noticing I should probably pick my first head of broccoli. It was big, green and ready to be eaten.

Shockingly, this was a Saturday and we had NO PLANS for the night.  I had set out some scrumptious local bratswurst to grill for dinner and I needed to incorporate this broccoli somehow...when a memory of this salad jumped into my mind.

Creamy Broccoli Salad...with a sweet crunch in a creamy dressing this is the perfect summer side dish! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I'm sure we've all had some variation of this salad at some point in our lives.  Some leave out the bacon {the horror}, others swear by raisins.  I've even seen where some like to include croutons to give it a super crunch factor.

I personally would never imagine leaving out the bacon and while I like the dried cranberry effect, raisins are fine too.  And since we have a WHOLE SHELF in our kitchen cupboard devoted to various nuts and seeds, I stuck with the traditional route of salted sunflower seeds.

With all of that salt and sweetness you need a creamy dressing.  It brings it all together and makes the most creamiest sauce!  Mayo haters give it a try, will ya?

Creamy Broccoli Salad...with a sweet crunch in a creamy dressing this is the perfect summer side dish! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I served this for that random dinner at our house on a Saturday night, but it's special enough to bring to a potluck or picnic.  I even had it at a graduation reception last month!

Now while I hand-picked this broccoli from my garden...I am not above jumping in the car and driving to the grocery store to pick up some.  Broccoli is broccoli in my opinion, whether from your own backyard to the neighboring market.

Whatever.  Just make this!

Even my kids {I have two who'd rather chew off their big toe than eat broccoli}, ate this without their usual complaining.

Bacon helps everything run smoothly.

Creamy Broccoli Salad...with a sweet crunch in a creamy dressing this is the perfect summer side dish! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)



Yield: 8

Creamy Broccoli Salad

prep time: 10 MINScook time: 10 MINStotal time: 20 mins
This delicious summer salad is full of flavor! Fresh broccoli, crunchy sunflower seeds, dried berries all tossed in a creamy dressing. Perfect for summer picnics!

INGREDIENTS:


  • 1 lb. fresh broccoli florets
  • 1/2 lb. bacon, diced and cooked
  • 1/2 c. dried cranberries or raisins
  • 1/2 c. salted, shelled sunflower seeds
  • 1 T. dried onion flakes
  • 1 c. mayonnaise
  • 1/4 c. sugar
  • 2 t. vinegar
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 t. pepper

INSTRUCTIONS:


  1. In a large bowl combine the broccoli florets, cooked bacon, dried fruit and sunflower seeds. Toss until mixed.
  2. In a small bowl stir together the mayo, sugar, vinegar and spices.
  3. Pour the dressing over the broccoli mixture and toss to coat. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours prior to eating, stirring again right before serving.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Chocolate Chip Popcorn Buster Bars

This post is sponsored by Palo Popcorn.
All opinions are my own.

Chocolate Chip Popcorn Buster Bars...a frozen summer dessert you'll love!  A layer of brownies, ice cream, unique toppings and hot fudge! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

In case you've been living in an air-conditioned, deep, dark tunnel underground, then you are well aware it's been HOT.

It's the Midwest kinda hot.  Sweltering humidity that seems to choke out your lungs as soon as you walk outside.  People in the southwest talk about dry heat.  What is that?  I've never experienced it. I only know the kind of hot that makes a person sweat just standing outside.

We've had a crazy whirlwind week.  Between traveling for a weekend getaway and multiple ball games dinners at home have been scarce.  Dessert at home?  Pretty much extinct.

Chocolate Chip Popcorn Buster Bars...a frozen summer dessert you'll love!  A layer of brownies, ice cream, unique toppings and hot fudge! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Not that we need dessert.

Oh no, we don't need it at all.  But it's hot out and I like breaking the dietary rules of summer.  You know, the one where you're supposed to be eating salads, grilled lean meats and fresh fruit.

We eating that too....with a little ice cream dessert on the side.  What can I say?  I prefer being happy and content versus miserable and irritable.

Chocolate Chip Popcorn Buster Bars...a frozen summer dessert you'll love!  A layer of brownies, ice cream, unique toppings and hot fudge! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

My friends at Palo Popcorn contacted me recently and soon after I found a HUGE shipment of their delicious kettle popped popcorn on my doorstep.

I jumped at the chance with working with them for a few reasons.  #1) I love popcorn.  Who doesn't? As a family we make a big batch on the stove top every Sunday afternoon.  Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall we make a batch.  It's relaxing and our little tradition.  #2)  Their popcorn is FOR REAL. Made with 100% pure coconut oil it contains zero trans fats, is gluten free and contains no preservatives.  #3) Their flavor is top-notch.  You know how sometimes you eat flavored popcorn and the seasoning is barely sprinkled on?  Not this stuff.  They don't cheat you.

And I'll admit, while it pains me to support a Badger state {just kidding...kinda}, I love using products that are local or semi-local.  Small businesses are kinda my thing.  Hailing from Wisconsin, they are practically cousins and since they make the world's best cheese, it was a no brainer.

Chocolate Chip Popcorn Buster Bars...a frozen summer dessert you'll love!  A layer of brownies, ice cream, unique toppings and hot fudge! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

They have six delicious flavors Salted Original, Bacon Cheddar, Jalapeno Cheddar, White Cheddar, Premium Cheddar and Bacon Jalapeno Cheddar.

Stay tuned to the bottom of this post...you can win some for yourself!

Being a food blogger, I'm up for a challenge.  Remind the time I put mustard and rum in my boozy and spiced caramel blondies?  It worked!  After that spectacular dessert I just knew I could figure out how to put white cheddar popcorn into a homemade buster bar dessert.

You know the iconic Dairy Queen Buster Bar?  The one where vanilla ice cream, peanuts and hot fudge all incompass a popsicle stick?  Well, I don't have much patience or time for popsicle sticks, but I can make a killer ice cream dessert in a 9x13 pan.

So that is what I set out to do...

Chocolate Chip Popcorn Buster Bars...a frozen summer dessert you'll love!  A layer of brownies, ice cream, unique toppings and hot fudge! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

And because I love brownies, I added a brownie layer, just because.

I can hear the cries through my computer already.  White cheddar popcorn in a sweet ice cream dish? It just doesn't make sense Ally.  I get it, you're right, it doesn't make sense.

But it tastes really good!

Both the salty peanuts and popcorn offset the sweet brownie, ice cream, chocolate chips and hot fudge.  Plus it gives the dish an incredible crunch effect!

Just like us Midwesterners like to eat cheddar popcorn and caramel corn mixed together, this dish works the same.  It does require a bit of layering ability and definitely some extended freezer time, but it's worth the effort.

I made this on a day that was particulary busy...camp in the morning, ball games at night...all of us sweaty and tired by the time we got home to eat dinner.  Thankfully this dessert was waiting for us in the freezer ready to eat!  It was the perfect ending to a dreadfully hot and sticky day.

Chocolate Chip Popcorn Buster Bars...a frozen summer dessert you'll love!  A layer of brownies, ice cream, unique toppings and hot fudge! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Want to win a big variety pack of Palo Popcorn for yourself?  Trust me, you do.  Here's your chance! You have two different ways to enter.  

1) Leave a comment on this post telling me which Palo Popcorn looks tasty to you.

2) Visit my Facebook page and comment telling me who you'd feed this delicious dessert to.

3) Do both to double your entries!

For those local in my area, visit Hy-Vee in Iowa City, store #1281, 1720 Waterfront Drive, as they stock this delicious popcorn!

Kudos to Palo Popcorn for sponsoring this post.  
Head on over to their website for ordering information!


Yield: 18print recipe

Chocolate Chip Popcorn Buster Bars

prep time: 5 hourcook time: 20 MINStotal time: 5 hours and 20 mins
A rich bottom brownie layer, vanilla ice cream, salted peanuts, popcorn, chocolate chips and hot fudge...it's one that will become a summer tradition!

INGREDIENTS:


  • 1 boxed brownie mix
  • 1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream, softened
  • 1 1/2 c. salted peanuts
  • 2 c. White Cheddar Palo Popcorn
  • 1 c. chocolate chips
  • 1 c. hot fudge, melted

INSTRUCTIONS:


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Lay parchment paper, overlapping the sides in a 9x13 baking pan.
  3. Mix the brownies according to package directions. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
  4. Allow the ice cream to sit on the counter for 30 minutes to soften. Once soft spread onto the cooled brownies, smoothing out with a spatula.
  5. Lay on the peanuts, popcorn and chocolate chips gently pushing with your hands into the softened ice cream. Place in the freezer for 4 hours.
  6. Remove from the freezer. Warm up the hot fudge in the microwave in 30 second intervals until smooth. Drizzle the hot fudge over the bars. Place back in the freezer for another hour before serving.
  7. To serve, lift up the parchment paper and remove the bars from the pan. Run a long sharp knife under hot water and slice squares for serving. Keep the bars in the freezer for up to one week covered.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Friday, June 9, 2017

Honey Dijon Crunchy Chicken Wraps

This post is sponsored by Stonyfield as my part of the Stonyfield Clean Plate Club.
All opinions are my own.

Honey Dijon Crunchy Chicken Wraps...the perfect blend of a crunchy chicken finger and fresh greens all tossed in a creamy yogurt dressing! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

There are many things I love about summer.  To name just a few...opening the windows, fresh air, iced sun tea, strawberries, dinners on the patio, farmer's markets, baseball games, fresh garden produce, BLT's, lounging by the pool, reading a good book outside on the porch, barbecues, vacations and so much more.

I really could keep going on forever.

Summer is simple.  It's a time for us to relax a bit, get outside and stay up just a little bit later.  With that comes simplier meals.  Lunches and dinners that are easy to throw together on the go.  Ones that don't require too much fuss and are full of fresh ingredients.


Honey Dijon Crunchy Chicken Wraps...the perfect blend of a crunchy chicken finger and fresh greens all tossed in a creamy yogurt dressing! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I recently joined the Stonyfield yogurt Clean Plate Club.  Each quarter I'll be sharing a fun new recipe using the delicious Stonyfield yogurt and another product of their choice.

This month I was happy to pick up some Taylor Farms Organic Sweet Baby Lettuce.  Taylor Farms is a family owned operation out of Salinas, California.  They offer a wide variety of salad kits, vegetables, snack trays and more.  Found at Kroger, Meijer and Target {hello, favorite store!}, their blends are fresh and delicious.

And did I mention a perfect pairing for these Honey Dijon Crunchy Chicken Wraps I made?


Honey Dijon Crunchy Chicken Wraps...the perfect blend of a crunchy chicken finger and fresh greens all tossed in a creamy yogurt dressing! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

While at Target I also picked up a container of Stonyfield Organic Whole Milk Yogurt. Yogurt isn't just to eat topped with granola!

Whole, creamy plain yogurts are also great for making dressings, sauces and marinades. Because, hello...you can't have salad without dressing!  A plain salad in my opinion is just boring.  I whisked together an easy dressing of yogurt, spicy brown mustard, red wine vinegar, honey and seasonings.  

You guys, I could have just drank the stuff and been satisified.  It is THAT good!


Honey Dijon Crunchy Chicken Wraps...the perfect blend of a crunchy chicken finger and fresh greens all tossed in a creamy yogurt dressing! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I'm not one to daintly drizzle a tablespoon of dressing over my food.  I like flavor.  And moisture, if I'm being honest, a dry, tasteless dinner is almost unedible to me.

So I tossed the Taylor Farms Sweet Baby Lettuce blend with the homemade dressing and then drizzled more on top of a crunchy chicken finger.

Yes, I said crunchy chicken finger.  And did I mention a sprinkling of crisp sliced almonds? This wrap is full of flavor and texture.  Roll it all up and it is the perfect summer lunch or light dinner.


Honey Dijon Crunchy Chicken Wraps...the perfect blend of a crunchy chicken finger and fresh greens all tossed in a creamy yogurt dressing! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

You see an assortment of "wraps" grace menus all over the country and I do order them often, but I have to admit I've never really made them at home.  What's not to love?  All your protein, veggies and fun sauce combined into one. 

It's basically the equivalent of the traditional casserole in the winter months.

And here's the kicker.  Kids will have a tendancy to eat their greens if wrapped up all pretty. Throw in a crunchy chicken finger and your golden.  Great to eat fresh for an easy lunch or wrap them up in tin foil while the chicken is still warm and take to the ball park for an easy dinner on the go.  They are also yummy eaten cold.  Whatever you prefer!



A big thanks to Stonyfield for sponsoring this post, as it's an honor to be part of their Stonyfield Clean Plate Club.

#TaylorFarms #StonyfieldOrganic #SaladsonRepeat #NationalDairyMonth #StonyfieldBlogger

Yield: 6

HONEY DIJON CRUNCHY CHICKEN WRAPS

Your new favorite summer lunch! Fresh greens, a crunchy chicken finger and almonds all tossed in a creamy honey dijon yogurt dressing.
prep time: 5 MINScook time: 20 MINStotal time: 25 mins

INGREDIENTS

Honey Dijon Dressing
  • 1/2 c. Stonyfield Organic Whole Milk Plain Yogurt
  • 1/4 c. honey
  • 2 T. spicy brown mustard
  • 3 T. rice wine vinegar
  • 1 t. pepper
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. garlic powder
For the wrap:
  • 6 10-inch flour tortillas
  • 6 large frozen chicken tenders
  • 1/4 c. sliced slmonds
  • 2 c. Taylor Farms Organic Sweet Baby Lettuce

INSTRUCTIONS



  1. Cook the frozen chicken tenders according to baking directions, allowing them to get extra crispy.
  2. In a bowl make the dressing. Combine the yogurt, honey, mustard, rice wine vinegar and spices. Whisk until smooth and set aside.
  3. In a bowl toss the lettuce with a couple of spoonfuls of the homemade dressing.
  4. When the chicken is done assemble the wraps. Flour tortilla, dressed lettuce, chicken, sliced almonds and a drizzle of more dressing. Roll up tightly, folding in the sides and eat warm. Wrap in tin foil if taking on the go. If you'd like to eat them cold {which is great too!} wrap up in tin foil and keep in the fridge for up to a day.
  5. Serve with extra dressing on the side for dipping.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Monday, June 5, 2017

10 Recipes You NEED to Get Through Your Summer

Summers around here are crazy!
I come to depend on a few staple recipes that are easy and crowd pleasing.

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

It's June, which for me means SUMMER!

Summers around here are a bit head spinning.  My kids are 7, 6 and 3 and the activities are endless. Between ball games, camps, reading groups, college for kids and just lazy days around home letting them be kids, we are busy.

There are many days we travel from one event to another, eating on the go, but I do try and plan ahead.  I've been taking hot meals to the ball park {yes, it can be done} and I've used my slow cooker more times than I can count.

What I have found is that I come to rely on some of the same meals and snacks over and over for two reasons.  They are easy and we love them.

Now when I say "they are easy", in my head they are.  I'm not that mom that feeds her kids a cold meat sandwich every day for lunch and then hot dogs and mac and cheese at night. Those dishes certainly come into play about once a week, BUT not every day.  I want them to eat a variety and I want them to eat well.

I'd love to know which one of these is your favorite!

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

This Zesty Spaghetti Salad is one of our new summer favorites.  It's zesty!  And full of flavor. Eaten cold it is perfect to take along on picnics or have along side a grilled burger at dinner.

If I'm being completely honest I could it eat all alone for a meal.  It's full of veggies, with a little freshly grated Parmesan cheese for good measure.  It keeps for daaaaaaaaays in the fridge, which is good because it makes a big batch!

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I've been making Frozen Smoothie Packs since before it was cool and all the rage around the internet. I sometimes wish I got a cut from all the profits other bloggers are making from them.  Anyway, these are very easy to prep on a Sunday to get ready for the week ahead.

If I had to guess we have smoothies for breakfast at least twice a week.  Pulling a small baggie out of the freezer with a combination already put together for me?  Priceless.  All I then need to do is add a liquid to blend it all up {milk, juice, coconut milk, water, etc.}

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I often wonder if in another life I grew up in Mexico, as I tan super easy and I often find myself turning to Mexican food.  Side note, my Spanish name in high school was Carmen.

Okay, so these Pineapple Chicken Sheet Pan Fajitas are ridiciously tasty and super easy to make. By prepping everything the day before you can simply throw the sliced chicken, pineapple, peppers, onions and seasonings on a sheet pan and 30 minutes later you're rolling it all up in a tortilla.

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I often say I have a few "last meals" that I'd request to my capturers and this Baked Caprese Garlic Bread is one of them.

Between late July and through the month of September my garden is loaded with tomatoes. One of my favorite ways to eat them for a simple dinner is on this garlic bread.  Melted mozzarella, fresh basil, juicy tomatoes and a balsamic drizzle.  

Seriously, life doesn't get much better than this.

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Crock Pot Maid-Rites are a staple here in the Midwest, not only for their flavor, but for their simplicity.  The meat can simmer all day long and only gets better.  Wrap them up individually in foil to take along to the ball park at night or come home and eat them fresh.

Each way is great!  Every single person I know who has tried this recipe reports back with rave reviews.  I prefer mine with sliced dill pickle, ketchup and mustard....but I know a LOT of people love them with chopped raw onion.

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

One of our favorite things to do in the summer after a LONG day to bring our dinner out to the deck and accompany it with a cold drink.  This Big Mac Cheeseburger Pizza often makes it out there!

Using a store bought thin crust, this comes together quick.  That special sauce?  Yeah, go ahead and double it, it's that good.  Bake it in the oven and carry the pizza pan outside for casual eating.  People love this one!

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I always have homemade muffins on hand.  Always.  They are easy to grab when running out the door and simple to throw in a bag when traveling.

My Double Chocolate Banana Muffins have created some waves.  People love 'em.  And you won't feel too bad about feeding them to your kids because they are filled with mashed banana and Greek yogurt.

It's kinda like eating chocolate cake for breakfast.

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Y'all know I have a strong like for both BLT's and Caesar salads.  They rank right up there next to my children.  I remember creating this Chopped BLT Caesar Salad about one month post partum with my third child.  The horomone God's must have had their act together that day because this one is still my favorite!

Crispy bacon, creamy/spicy dressing, crunchy croutons, juicy tomatoes.  Nothing is bad here!  Toss this bad boy together and you can feed a crowd.

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

If your kids are anything like mine, then they love to DIP their food.  Into anything really. Whether it be ketchup, ranch dressing or barbecue sauce, eating something plain just isn't in the cards.

I like to keep a batch of this Comeback Dipping Sauce on hand for those nights we are making things easy.  When I'm making a batch of fries, or chicken strips or grilled sandwiches.  It's tangy and creamy with a hint of spice!

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Can we all note it just wouldn't be summer without another sheet pan dinner?  With just five ingredients, plus salt and pepper, an elf in a clown suit could throw this one together.

I often make this Sausage and Potato Sheet Pan Dinner in late summer when people are handing me green beans by the bag full.  They pair well with the roasted potatoes and kielbasa sausage.  You can toss all the ingredients together before work, leave them in the fridge and just throw it on a sheet pan when ready to start supper.  Super easy!

10 Recipes You Need to Get Through the Summer...these 10 meals are easy, delicious and dependable! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

What are some of your favorite summer meals?  Ones you keep coming back too?  Summer is for fun and good eating.  Don't stress out about it!