Ally's Sweet and Savory Eats: January 2017

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Buffalo Chicken Pull-a-Part Garlic Bread

Bring this to your next party and watch it disappear.
Easy to make, easy to eat!

Buffalo Chicken Pull-a-Part Garlic Bread...the ultimate party appetizer for all the buffalo sauce lovers! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Calling all buffalo chicken lovers! And haters! Yes, I'm inviting the haters too. I really do think and believe that everyone will love this garlic bread.

Just in time for Super Bowl Sunday, this garlic bread needs to be on your menu. It is perfect to go along with a main pasta dish, but honestly it's even better placed in the middle of an appetizer table. I have no doubt your people will continue to come back for seconds.

Now, I have long been a fan of buffalo sauce on anything long before it was an annoying trend. Maybe I started the trend? Probably not, but I have shared a hearty handful of buffalo sauce dishes over the years {check them all out below}.

Buffalo Chicken Pull-a-Part Garlic Bread...the ultimate party appetizer for all the buffalo sauce lovers! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

This bread not only looks pretty, but it is pretty darn easily to put together as well. You can assemble it right before baking or feel free to prep it the night before, wrap it up, throw it in the fridge to bake off the next day. That juicy buffalo, garlic goodness will only get better!

I happened to find a yummy King's Hawaiian Sweet Round Bread loaf at my local grocery store, but feel free to use any good quality round shaped bread loaf. A nice, crusty top is always nice as it holds together well, but it isn't necessary.

Buffalo Chicken Pull-a-Part Garlic Bread...the ultimate party appetizer for all the buffalo sauce lovers! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

You can also buy a prepared bottle of buffalo sauce and doctor it up with the fresh garlic, but I have always loved making my own {hot sauce + melted butter}.  

The key here is, make it your own! Bottled or not, this appetizer or side dish to a meal is perfect. For any occasion!

But seriously, make it for the big game coming up.  You can even bake this ahead of time, wrap it up in foil, stick it in the crock pot on warm and take it tailgating with you!  You'll run into friends you didn't even know you had.

Buffalo Chicken Pull-a-Part Garlic Bread...the ultimate party appetizer for all the buffalo sauce lovers! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Buffalo Chicken Pull-a-Part Garlic Bread

1 loaf King's Hawaiian Sweet Round Bread {or any round bread loaf}
2 c. cooked, shredded chicken
1/2 c. hot sauce
1 stick unsalted butter
1 garlic clove, minced
1 c. shredded Colby cheese
fresh or dried parsley, for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Using a serrated knife, cut slices into the bread, going ¾ of the way down but not fully through. Criss-cross the slits to make a grid of slices.
3. In a saucepan melt the butter, add in the hot sauce and minced garlic, stirring to combine. Add in the shredded chicken and toss to coat.
4. Carefully pull apart the slices of bread and stuff the buffalo chicken mixture down into the bread. Then stuff the shredded cheese into the bread as well.

5. Bake for 15-20 minutes or just until all is heated through, the cheese has melted and the top of the bread is getting crispy. Serve warm.

Buffalo Chicken Pull-a-Part Garlic Bread...the ultimate party appetizer for all the buffalo sauce lovers! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Need more buffalo inspired recipes to cure your fix? 

Here you go!








Thursday, January 26, 2017

Chicken Cordon Bleu Wild Rice Soup

This post is sponsored by Veetee, but all opinions are my own.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Wild Rice Soup...the classic dish is turned into soup and bulked up with hearty rice!  Truly comfort in a bowl. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

This post does contain affiliate links for your convenience.

I am beyond thrilled to continue my relationship with Veetee rice in 2017 as a brand ambassador.  If you are a faithful reader {you should be!} you'll remember the three recipes I developed for them last year.  My Fried Stuffed Rice Balls stole the show, but they certainly did not show up my Chinese Chicken Lettuce Cups or my Cheesy Alfredo Chicken Casserole.

I mean, who doesn't like rice?

It can bulk up any meal.  It's budget friendly.  It's easy to make.  It's perfect as a side and compliments most any meal!

What I love, love, love about Veetee Rice is that is comes in easy single {or double} serving microwavable packs.  It is beyond easy to walk over to my cupboard, pull out a flavor and have it on the dinner in less than 5 minutes.

In fact, it cooks perfectly in just 2 minutes. 

Chicken Cordon Bleu Wild Rice Soup...the classic dish is turned into soup and bulked up with hearty rice!  Truly comfort in a bowl. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

When I was dreaming up recipes for this project {I have two more great ones coming up!} I knew I wanted to incorporate some of their Basmati & Wild Rice into at least one of the recipes.  I just love the hearty, nutty flavor.

Where most of my recipes are planned, some just come to me, a bit by mistake.  This one is no exception.  I had been thinking to myself that I hadn't made the classic Chicken Cordon Bleu in a long, long time.  Years in fact.  And yes, I could just serve this rice on the side and call it good {albeit, a bit boring}, but being a brand ambassdaor isn't about being boring.

Soup came to mind as it is winter here and I'm fairly certain I haven't seen the sun in close to three weeks.  When it's dreadfully dreary outside I crave comfort foods, soup being at the top of the list.

Ding, ding!  Why not make one of my favorite dishes, chicken cordon bleu, in a soup form and bulk it up with this fantastic rice?

Yep, that is how this recipe was born.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Wild Rice Soup...the classic dish is turned into soup and bulked up with hearty rice!  Truly comfort in a bowl. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

In my defense soup can be hard to photograph, so I want to emphasize that this version is OUT OF THIS WORLD.  It is a perfect stick-to-your-ribs, creamy, hearty, almost chowder-like soup that will not be passed up by anyone.

The milk, cream and butter make a fantastic base and it's full of juicy chicken, ham and rice and is brought all together with some melted Swiss cheese.  It really does taste just like the classic dish!

You dip your spoon in this and it literally sticks to the spoon, clinging for life, hoping it makes it to your mouth.  Sprinkle a little fresh parsley or any favorite herb on top, serve with a slice of crusty garlic bread on the side and dinner is made.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Wild Rice Soup...the classic dish is turned into soup and bulked up with hearty rice!  Truly comfort in a bowl. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

If you are stuck in a dinner rut, or even a nice Sunday meal rut {it's fancy enough for that!} put this Chicken Cordon Bleu Wild Rice Soup on the menu.  Start to finish, it's done in 30 minutes.  Yes, just 30 minutes!  

Meaning it is easy enough for a weeknight or simple enough for Sunday dinner.  I would also recommend making it over the weekend, sticking it in the fridge and reheating for easy lunches or dinners throughout the week.

I know, I'm looking forward to my leftovers...

Chicken Cordon Bleu Wild Rice Soup


1/4 c. unsalted butter
1/4 c. flour
2 1/2 c. half and half
2 1/2 c. milk
1 c. water
8 oz. cream cheese
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1 c. cooked, cubed ham
1 9 oz. package Veetee Basmati & Wild Rice {or 2 c. cooked any wild rice}
1 c. shredded Swiss cheese
drizzle of olive oil

1.  Heat a large stock pot or dutch oven {this is the one I use} over medium heat.  
2.  Drizzle in the olive oil and cook the diced chicken.  Stir, continuing to cook on all sides until not longer pink, about 5-6 minutes.  Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
3.  Add in the butter to melt, scraping all the bits from the bottom of the pan.
4.  Sprinkle in the flour and whisk to combine into a roux.  Continue whisking over the heat for 1 minute.
5.  Stir in the half and half, milk, water and bouillon bringing it up to heat, then add in the cream cheese, whisking to combine.  Continue whisking until the cream cheese has melted and then bring to a boil.
6.  Add in the chicken, ham and cooked rice.  Stir to combine and take off the heat.
7.  Sprinkle in the Swiss cheese and stir until melted.  Put back on the heat on LOW if eating right away, or allow to cool before putting back in the fridge.
8.  Serve along side a salad and with a nice hunk of crusty bread.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Wild Rice Soup...the classic dish is turned into soup and bulked up with hearty rice!  Truly comfort in a bowl. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Is soup your cold weather meal like it is mine?  If so, check out my Main Dishes page. Towards the bottom I have a WHOLE list of our favorite soups, many of which I'm sure you'll love!

A big thank you to Veetee for sponsoring this post!


Saturday, January 21, 2017

Crock Pot No-Knead Cinnamon Bread

Well, here's a first.
I made bread in the Crock Pot!

Crock Pot No-Knead Cinnamon Bread...yes, you can make bread in the slow cooker!  This bread is perfect for toast in the morning! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience.

I've said this before, but baking and creating new recipes in the kitchen is a stress reliever for me. When things are a bit crazy I tend to gravitate towards that mixing bowl and oven. Heck, even when I'm sick and down and out I sometimes find myself fumbling around in there, fully knowing that no one will probably want to eat my germ filled concoction.

Some people feel the need to exercise {oh, how I wish}, some like to read {my second choice}, some go for a drive {not with three kids!} and others binge watch their favorite T.V. show {currently, Parenthood}.

My first choice is to bake.  Usually in the oven, but for whatever reason I drug out the crock pot on this day.  Call me crazy but I wanted to try out an easy bread recipe and frankly be super lazy about it, so I pulled the crock pot out and got to work.

Crock Pot No-Knead Cinnamon Bread...yes, you can make bread in the slow cooker!  This bread is perfect for toast in the morning! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

My mom makes this crazy good English muffin bread, which I have adopted and we love, so I wanted to make something similar.

Let's be honest, nothing beats a good piece of toast in the morning slathered with warm butter and homemade jam that is accompanied by your favorite hot beverage {in my case hot tea or cappuccino}.  

I understand it is not the healhiest.  Don't be sending the hate mail.  I fully know I should not eat that and should probably have an egg white omelet with sauteed veggies, but mornings are mornings and many of mine are crazy, so I opt for toast.

But, guess what this stuff is homemade and not store bought, so kudos to me there!

Crock Pot No-Knead Cinnamon Bread...yes, you can make bread in the slow cooker!  This bread is perfect for toast in the morning! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I had another surprise stuffed up my sleeve when I made this....I added a healthy dose of cinnamon and nutmeg instead of keeping it plain as I was dreaming of making French toast over the weekend.

But then, my middle child came down with a lovely case of strep throat, which in turn made her have no appetite {she is my French toast lover}, which in turn had her quarantined for most of the weekend, which threw out my French toast plans.

The moral of the story is, this bread does make great French toast.  I just know it.  It's crusty on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside and would soak up that egg custard like no one's business.

Try it and let me know what happens.  

Crock Pot No-Knead Cinnamon Bread...yes, you can make bread in the slow cooker!  This bread is perfect for toast in the morning! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

If you have a few hours at home, better yet over the weekend, you need to try this bread.  We ate it just like this photo above for breakfast and again one night when I made my Spicy Egg Bake for dinner, along with a side of crispy bacon.

Please note all crock pots work a bit different.  If yours is older and cooks super fast you may not need to keep it in the full three hours.  I used my Cook 'n Carry 6 Quart Oval Crock Pot and it took right at 3 hours.  

You can also use a smaller crock pot, the bread will shape to the form of your dish, so it may be a bit higher/taller.  I recommend checking on it halfway through for doneness.  If the middle still seems doughy, give it a bit more time.  Don't be afraid!

Crock Pot No-Knead Cinnamon Bread


3 c. all-purpose flour
1 t. yeast
1 1/2 t. salt
1 T. cinnamon
1 t. nutmeg
1 1/2 c. very warm water {not boiling}

1.  In a mixing bowl combine the flour, yeast, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Pour the warm water in the bowl and mix with a spatula.  The dough will be sticky.  Cover with plastic wrap or a lid and leave at room temparture for 3 hours.
2.  Place dough on a floured surface, sprinkling a bit more flour on the dough, giving the dough a few folds, rolling it into a ball.
3.  Tear off a large piece of parchment paper, place the dough on the paper and set it inside the crock pot.
4.  Cover and cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours.  Check the bread 90 minutes in to make sure your crock pot isn't too hot or the time needs to be adjusted.
5.  Remove the bread when done and allow to fully cool.  Keep in an airtight container or large plastic baggie for up to one week for the best freshness.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Chicken & Spinach Stuffed Shells

 This is offically my new favorite baked pasta dish.
Read on to see why we all loved it!

Chicken & Spinach Stuffed Shells...an incredible, creamy, stuffed to the brim recipe that your whole family will love! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience.

I may or may not have been slacking in the hearty, stick-to-your-ribs, family dinners as of recent. Our weekends have been full and when we did have a spare night at home with the kids we had been opting for take-out Chinese or our favorite local pizza joint.

Both of which are FABULOUS.

I will not back door them.

BUT.  It was brought to my attention that I hadn't made a big, classic Sunday dinner in quite a long time.  They were right.  I hadn't.

Chicken & Spinach Stuffed Shells...an incredible, creamy, stuffed to the brim recipe that your whole family will love! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Shockingly, after scouring my website I realized I had only ever featured ONE stuffed shell recipe and it was a Mexican dish nonetheless!

What have I been doing?  Obviously neglecting my favorite ethnic dish.  Italian.  Pasta of all kinds. Hot pasta covered in any kind of sauce {butter, marinara, alfredo} anything really.  If I could eat pasta every day I would.

My hips wouldn't fit through the door, but I'd be happy.  I remember going to Venice, Italy in high school and I had the very best carbonara dish in a small restaurant with checkered tablecloths off an alley of a cobblestone street.  It had little bits of bacon and runny egg and lots of freshly cracked pepper.

It was glorious.

Chicken & Spinach Stuffed Shells...an incredible, creamy, stuffed to the brim recipe that your whole family will love! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

This recipe makes one 9x13 dish and another 8x8 dish.  Yeah, that seems like a lot but my family of five busted through that in dinner one night and lunch the following day.

The husband and I debated.  Should I freeze the 8x8 baking dish for another day?  I went back and forth.  Finally he said, "just bake it off, we'll eat the leftovers, we always eat leftover pasta".

He was right.  All was gone within 24 hours.

The kids had a snow day on Monday {ahem, ice day} so we all gobbled them up while we were stuck inside the next day.

Chicken & Spinach Stuffed Shells...an incredible, creamy, stuffed to the brim recipe that your whole family will love! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

How pretty are these?

They are stuffed to the brim with cottage cheese, cream cheese, shredded chicken, spinach, garlic, Parmesan cheese and more.  Then they are covered in a rich marinara {I happen to LOVE the Simply Nature brand from ALDI} and finally during the final 5 minutes of cooking you sprinkle some mozzarella cheese on top....

....and perfection is made.

Chicken & Spinach Stuffed Shells


2 c. shredded cooked chicken
2 c. frozen, drained spinach
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 c. cottage cheese
2 8 oz. packages cream cheese
1 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg
1 T. dried onion flakes
1 t. dried parsley
1 t. dried Italian seasoning
1 t. salt
1 t. pepper
1 large jar marinara sauce
2 c. mozzarella cheese

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a 9x13 baking dish and 8x8 baking dish. Pour enough marinara in the bottom of both dishes, enough to cover.
2.  In a large bowl combine all ingredients, reserving 1 c. of the mozzarella cheese to top at the end.
3.  Boil the pasta until al dente, not overcooking.  Rinse the shells and lay on a baking sheet to cool.
4.  Stuff each shell generously, filling to the top, laying on top of the marinara sauce, pouring more on top of the stuffed shells.
5.  Cover each dish with foil and bake for 40 minutes.
6.  Remove the foil, top with the remaining mozzarella cheese and bake another 5 minutes or until melted.
7.  Allow to cool for 5 minutes and serve warm.  


Chicken & Spinach Stuffed Shells...an incredible, creamy, stuffed to the brim recipe that your whole family will love! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

A few of our other favorite baked pasta dishes?


Saturday, January 14, 2017

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115

Y'all have been begging, pleading, shouting at me that you needed another meal plan.
Well, here it is!  These dinners are delicious, start planning!

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Meal planning.  You either love it or hate it.  Or hate doing it, but love it once it's done.  You get my drift.  I'm a bit of the ladder.  Yes, it requires me to sit down and focus for 30 minutes, usually with all three kids running amok, but I am over the moon once it'd done.

Thankfully I have a food blog I trust {ahem, my own}, so it's easy for me to hop on, scan around and pick out what I'm craving.  For my readers I enjoy developing these so you can do the same with my recipes.

My meal planning posts have been some of my most popular and it's been quite awhile since I last produced on.  And frankly you guys told me that so I got to work!  This plan features enough dinners for two weeks.  It will feed a family of 5 easily, maybe more, there is a wide variety {Italian, Mexican, American, etc} and it all comes in at $111.41.

Not too shabby.

Please note I purchased all of my ingredients at my local ALDI store here in eastern Iowa. Prices will vary.  But generally, if you shop at an ALDI, your total should be close to mine.  And if you choose to shop at your favorite store, just note prices will be a bit higher, as ALDI is notoriously known for their very low prices.  But even if your total is a bit higher, guess what?  You'll still received a great 10 dinner meal plan.  And be resourceful. Eat up those leftovers for lunch the next day.  It saves money!

PLUS.  You will have extras to use on whatever you want.  Extra ketchup, extra carrots, extra corn flakes.  You get the picture.

So, here we go.  I have listed the ingredients for each meal.  If the ingredient has already been purchased for a previous meal it will be noted.  The recipe title and photo are both linked back to my original recipe.

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Dorito Burrito Bake - 1 pkg. crescent rolls $1.49, bag of Doritos $1.09, 1 lb. ground beef $6.73, sour cream $1.19, jar of salsa $1.99, block of Colby cheese $1.89, head of lettuce 89 cents.
Total - $15.27

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Buttermilk Ranch Cornflake Chicken - 3lb. bag of frozen chicken breasts $5.99, carton of buttermilk $1.29, bottle of ranch dressing $1.29, box of cornflake cereal $2.29, garlic powder {already purchased}, Italian seasoning 99 cents.
Total - $11.85

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Sausage and Potato Sheet Pan Dinner - ring of kielbasa $2.69, fresh green beans $2.99, 4 baking potatoes {already purchased}, garlic {already purchased}, butter {already purchased}.
Total = $5.68

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Garlic Knot Pizza Casserole - canned biscuits 99 cents, butter $2.68, Parmesan cheese {already purchased}, garlic powder 99 cents, onion powder 99 cents, Italian seasoning {already purchased}, marinara sauce $1.89, block of mozzarella cheese $1.89, 1 lb. ground sausage $1.99, pepperoni slices {already purchased}.
Total = $11.42

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Sheet Pan Pineapple Chicken Fajitas - 3 lb. bag of frozen chicken breasts $5.99, mini sweet peppers $2.49, onion {already purchased}, canned chili peppers in adobo sauce $1.69, canned pineapple chunks 99 cents, chili powder 99 cents, cumin 99 cents, onion powder {already purchased}, garlic powder {already purchased}
Total = $13.14

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Creamy Garlic Spinach Ricotta Pizza - pizza crust $2.99, ricotta cheese $1.69, head of garlic 89 cents, Parmesan cheese $1.99, block of mozzarella cheese $1.89, bag of fresh spinach $1.99
Total = $11.44

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Sloppy Joe Tator Tot Casserole - 1 lb. ground beef $6.73, bottle of ketchup $1.19, bottle of mustard 59 cents, bottle of barbecue sauce $1.69, can of tomato sauce 55 cents, white vinegar 79 cents, onions $1.69, garlic powder {already purchased}, bag of tator tots $1.65
Total = $14.88

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Chicken Noodle Chowder - chicken breasts {already purchased}, celery $1.29, carrots 49 cents, onion {already purchased}, bag of potatoes $1.89, package of egg noodles $1.99, chicken stock $1.39, butter {already purchased}, flour $1.29, Colby cheese $1.89, parsley 99 cents.
Total = $10.23

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Salsa Verde Chicken Tortilla Casserole - chicken breasts {already purchased}, sour cream $1.19, salsa verde $1.19, corn tortillas $1.69, cilantro 99 cents, block of Monterey Jack cheese $1.89.
Total = $6.95

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Pepperoni Pizza Lasagna Roll-Ups - lasagna noodles $1.19, pepperoni slices $2.19, cottage cheese $1.50, Parmesan cheese {already purchased}, garlic powder, onion powder, parsley {all already purchased}, 2 jars of spaghetti sauce $1.89/ea., block of mozzarella cheese $1.89.
Total = $10.55

GRAND TOTAL = $111.41

Your family will never eat better!  Prep as much as you can the night before, or even the Sunday prior to get a head start.  It may seem like a lot of work, but trust me when I say it's worth it.  

Share this meal plan with your friends and family and let me know what you think!

Meal Plan: 2 Weeks, 5 Mouths, All for Under $115...a superb plan for a hungry family!  Plenty of leftovers for lunches and extras that will stock your fridge and pantry. (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

20+ Valentine's Day Treats

Sweet or savory...here are 20+ treats to make that day special!

20+ Valentine's Day Treats...both salty and sweet! (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

That romantic day that everyone either loves or hates is almost here!  I find that people who are in love, generally love it, and those that aren't in love, generally hate it.

The husband and I don't normally go all out, mainly because his birthday is a couple of days prior, but we do celebrate.  I often make his favorite homemade strawberry cheesecake and I'll whip up something fun for the kids.  Heart shaped pancakes, strawberries and whip cream, French toast topped with blueberries or cut-out heart shaped sandwiches in their lunch boxes.

Here's the thing.  Even if it is a holiday that doesn't otherwise excite you, make it fun anyway. Especially if you have kids!  Show them how much you love them.  They'll really enjoy it and I can almost bet it will start your day off right.

Because trust me, starting your day off positive is a game changer.

Here we go!  Pick out a few of these and let your family decide which one you should make for Valentine's Day.  They're a load of fun!


XOXO Rice Krispie Treats - There is no better way to show your love than these fun treats!


Sweet Chili Baked Brie - melty brie wrapped in puff pastry and dunked
 into a sweet, spicy sauce, perfect!


7-Layer Valentine Bars - a little crunch, a lot of sweet and perfect to deliver to your sweetie!


Strawberry Shortcake Skewers - let the kids assemble these for a fun afters school snack!


Parmesan Garlic Knot Hearts - serve these up along a big bowl of romantic pasta and dinner is done!


Sweetheart Cinnamon Rolls - what a fun way to jazz up store bought cinnamon rolls!


Valentine's Day Berry Punch for Kids - what kid wouldn't enjoy this fun "mocktail" with dinner?



Valentine's Day Crack - funny name, but delicious treat!


Valentine Pizza - use a mini heart cookie cutter and make pizza night special!


Peppermint Kiss Thumbprint Cookies - these melt-in-your-mouth treats 
are perfect for an after dinner treat!


Valentine's Funfetti Popcorn - are the kids having a Valentine party at school?  This is perfect!


Valentine's Day Salad - chop up those veggies and toppings in fun X's and O's!


Candy Melt Valentine Squares - easy, fun, ideal to give away to neighbors and friends!


Valentine's Day Slice-n-Bake Cookies - bring out the sprinkles and have some fun!


You Have My Heart Egg Muffins - start off the morning right!


Valentine's Day M&M Cookies - who doesn't love a cookie loaded with M&M's?


Cherry Almond Bread - bake up some loaves for friends and family!



Heart Shaped Monte Cristo - make lunch or dinner fun with these cute sandwiches!


Mini Heart Shaped Pizzas - gather everyone around and top them with whatever you like!


Valentine's Day Muddy Buddies - this addictive snack mix is hard to beat!


Heart Eggs in the Hole - adorable and tasty for Valentine's Day morning!


Valentine Cream Cheese Cookies - these easy cut-outs are a perfect activity for the kids!

So which one is your favorite?  I'm thinking the mini heart shaped pizzas for us for lunch, the cinnamon rolls for breakfast and maybe if the kids are lucky some muddy buddies {or puppy chow like we call it around here} for dessert.

Have a wonderful Valentine's Day everyone!