Posted in breakfast, Carrots, Drinks, Healthy, Ingredients, Nut free, Pineapple, Recipes, Smoothie, Snacks

Carrot Tropical Smoothie

This smoothie looked interesting, so I decided to try it. At first, I was skeptical because it contained carrot juice, but it was delicious! It’s a wonderful way to get the fruits and veggies you need!

Side note: I took it to work one day. Some students asked me what was in it. When I said carrot juice, they all gave me a look of disgust. (They had thought it looked good until I told them about carrot juice.)

Carrot Tropical Smoothie

Slender Kitchen

Stars of the recipe:

  • 1/2 c. carrot juice, either juice it yourself or get a brand like Bolthouse Farms
  • 1/2 c. orange juice
  • 3/4 c. frozen mango
  • 3/4 c. frozen pineapple
  • Juice of 1/2 of a lime (Stick in the microwave for 10 seconds before juicing it. That maximizes the amount of juice you get.)
  • If you want, you could add nonfat Greek yogurt for added protein. I haven’t tried it yet, but I bet it would be delicious.


  1. Put all of the ingredients in your blender.
  2. Blend away until desired consistency. If need be, add water if it doesn’t blend.
  3. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

Posted in Dessert, Family Recipe, Ice cream, Imaginative one, Nut free, Recipes, Snacks, Wee one

Cream Soda Ice Cream

This is our family’s favorite ice cream that my in-laws make. They only make it for special occasions. At the end of the school year, my mother-in-law contacts my sons’ teachers and asks if they mind her bringing some ice creams to share with their classmates. It is a way for them to celebrate their birthdays because they both have summer birthdays.

Warning:  You need an ice cream machine to make this.

IMG_8161[1]Cream Soda Ice Cream

Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 cans of sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 liters of red cream soda (You can use other flavors of pop Lemon-lime soda is yummy, but root beer tastes flat.)


  1. Combine the cream soda and sweetened condensed milk in the ice cream machine.
  2. Follow the instructions for your machine.
  3. Put it in a freezer-safe container in your freezer.
  4. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

Posted in Almond milk, breakfast, Dessert, Drinks, Ingredients, Nut free, Recipes, Smoothie, Spinach

Key Lime Smoothie (GF, DF)

One of my favorite smoothies at Tropical Smoothie is the Blimey Limey. It has strawberries, limes, oranges, and pineapples. I love the tang of the limes in the drink. So when I found a recipe for a smoothie that used limes, I had to try it out. Delicious!

After drinking it, I was super energized. In fact, one of my students mentioned I was hyper. I don’t know if it was from the smoothie or the two cups of coffee I had that morning. (I didn’t sleep well the night before.)

Key Lime Smoothie

Healthful Pursuit

Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 tbsp. Key lime juice (about 4 limes) – I microwaved mine for about 10 seconds to maximize the amount of juice.
  • 1 tsp. key lime zest
  • 1 c. unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1 ripe frozen banana
  • 1/4 tsp. pure vanilla extract (I omitted this because I used vanilla almond coconut milk.)
  • 1 tbsp. stevia
  • 1 tbsp. sunflower butter
  • 2 c. baby spinach
  • 4 ice cubes
  • Crushed graham cracker pieces (optional) – Leave off if gluten-free or use a gluten-free graham cracker.
  • Cool Whip or something similar (optional) – Leave off if dairy free or use coconut cream instead.


  1. Place in your blender the order of the ingredients listed, and blend until smooth.
  2. Top with crushed graham crackers and Cool Whip, if desired.
  3. Enjoy!

This made 2 smoothies for me.

Printable Recipe


Someone asked me what I could use instead of bananas. I found this link for other ingredients you can use instead of bananas.

Posted in Chocolate, Dessert, Family, Holiday/Christmas, Hubby, Ingredients, Nut free, Recipes, Snacks

Vegan Brownies

My husband has a cousin, J., who is a vegan.  We went to his handfasting (another new experience for us) a year and a half ago.  The reception afterward featured Indian food (another new experience for us) and vegan cupcakes.  We were pleasantly surprised at how yummy they were.

J. and their wife had their first baby in September.  Since they live in Canada and Ohio, we had not met baby S . until last night.  He is totally cute and very long for his age.  J. is a tall man, so it’s not too surprising.

Since we were going to meet up with J., their wife, and baby S., I knew there would be Christmas goodies.  J. wouldn’t be able to enjoy the goodies, so I decided to make him a batch of vegan brownies so he could enjoy some Christmas goodies.

These are rich, so a tall glass of water, milk, tea, or coffee is in order when you eat a piece!

1 (108)

Vegan Brownies

Hevil’s Special Delights

Stars of the recipe:

  • 1 1/3 c. whole wheat flour
  • 1 c. cocoa powder
  • 1 3/4 c. sugar (This may be reduced to 1 1/2 c. sugar or if you use Truvia baking mix, use 3/4 c.)
  • 1 c. applesauce
  • 1 banana mashed (I used my mashed potato masher.)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp. baking powder


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix the applesauce, banana, and vanilla extract in a large bowl.
  3. In a medium size bowl, mix together the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients.  Warning:  the batter is going to be thick.
  4. Pour into a greased 8 by 8 pan or 9 by 9 pan.
  5. Bake for 35 minutes, and then check to see if the brownies are done baking.  (Mine took longer when I checked.)
  6. Cool and then cut into pieces.
  7. Enjoy with nondairy milk, water, coffee, or hot tea.

Printable Recipe

Posted in Dessert, Nut free, Recipes

Not Pecan Pie Bars

A couple of weeks ago, I found a recipe in Grandma Loy’s kitchen that intrigued me. The recipe was for pecan pie bars made with pretzels instead of pecans. I knew I wanted to make them but didn’t know when I would. So on the Sunday before Thanksgiving, at dinner, we were talking about Thanksgiving dinner. I offered to make the veggies, biscuits, and desserts. It was then I knew I would make those not pecan pie bars.

Everyone was impressed with the not pecan pie bars. It looked like real pecans were part of the topping, and it was not too salty. My sister-in-law, who is allergic to nuts, enjoyed them. Even my brother-in-law gave me a compliment on how good they were. I ended up sending the rest of the batch home with them.

You first need to make the Bar Cookie Crust

Stars of the Bar Cookie Crust

  • 2 c. all purpose flour
  • 1/3 c. sugar
  • 1/4 t. salt
  • 1/2 c. butter or margarine, cut up

Steps for making the Bar Cookie Crust

  1. Place flour, sugar, and salt in a mixing bowl.
  2. Cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  3. Press crumbs firmly into the bottom and 1/4 inch up the sides of a greased (I use my pan-release mixture from my local candy/cake supply store.) 9×13-inch baking pan.
  4.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

While the Cookie Bar Crust is baking, make up the topping.

Stars of the recipe for the Not Pecan Pie Bars

  • 1 Bar Cookie Crust
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 c. Karo, Light or Dark
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 2 T. butter or margarine, melted
  • 2 t. vanilla
  • 1 1/3 c. broken pretzel sticks (I put them in a bag and then smashed them with the smooth side of my meat tenderizer. Many frustrations were worked out.)

Steps for the Not Pecan Pie Bars:

  1. While the cookie bar crust is baking, beat eggs, Karo, sugar, butter or margarine, and vanilla in a large bowl. (I used my stand mixer.)
  2. Stir in pretzels.
  3. Pour over hot crust, spreading evenly.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until filling is firm around the edges and slightly firm in the center.
  5. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  6. Cut into bars and enjoy!

Printable Recipe