Category Archives: Recipes

Pumpkin Pie Dip

Pumpkin Pie Dip

It’s Friday and Fall.  The perfect time to share a yummy family favorite recipe for you to try over the weekend.  If you like quick recipes and all things pumpkin, you’ll love this recipe!  This is a recipe I taught at my kids’ school when I was doing cooking with the students.  This particular recipe involves no cooking and is simple enough for kids to help make it.

Pumpkin Pie Dip

  • 8 oz. softened cream cheese
  • 2 C. powdered sugar
  • 1 C. canned pumpkin
  • 1 t. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 2 C. Cool Whip
  1. Beat cream cheese with powdered sugar until light and fluffy.
  2. Stir in pumpkin along with spices.
  3. Fold in the Cool Whip and then chill dip for about 30 min. (this isn’t a must–if you or the kids can’t wait, don’t worry about it!)

We generally eat ours with apple slices but graham crackers are good, too.  Enjoy!

3 Yummy St. Patrick’s Day projects, and 1 Leprechaun Trick

Leprechaun Loot Chest

Isn’t this chest of Leprechaun Loot super adorable?!?  My friend Jane made these up and gave them to my kiddos for St. Patrick’s Day.  Inside she had a wonderful assortment of green candies, Shamrocks, a necklace, and chocolate gold coins.  It was well thought out and well executed!

Leprechaun Loot

Need a yummy St. Patrick’s Day drink perfect for you and the kids?  Try some Leprechaun Juice!

Leprechaun Juice

I made this with the kids at school.  It’s equal parts pineapple juice, lemonade and sparkling white grape juice (they all thought I was serving them some wine!) Then you chop up some lime popsicles to add color and chill.  And if you want you can even add some food coloring to really kick up the color intensity.  I had them dip their cups in some lemonade and then rim their glasses with green sugar sprinkles.  They got a kick out of it!

Now, how about a yummy treat to eat?  I found a fun recipe for Pot ‘o Gold Cake on Pinterest.

Pot o Gold Cake

And a surprise inside…

Inside Pot o Gold Cake

And one final cute idea…a darling leprechaun letter to a child who tried to trap them.  I found the idea for it HERE.  I made mine using American Text.  I used an old corner punch I had and then outlined the paper in Metallic Gold Marker.  And finally, I rolled them up and tied them with green grosgrain ribbon and left them beside each of my kids’ traps.

Leprechaun Letter

Rolled Up Leprechaun Letter

I hope you had a fun St. Patrick’s Day!

My favorite Thanksgiving side dish recipe!

Cranberry Salad

Thanksgiving is all about family (and food!)  This Cranberry Salad is something my grandma made every year for Thanksgiving.  I love making it now with my kids (who call it “pink marshmallows”).  It’s become a tradition and aren’t traditions fun to pass on.  So if you are looking for a new recipe to try out this Thanksgiving, this is an easy one–plus kids eat it!

Cranberry Salad

  • 1 lb. cranberries chopped
  • 1 C. crushed pineapple
  • 1 C. sugar
  • 1/2 lb. miniature marshmallows
  • 1/2 C. whipped cream
  • 1/2 C. nuts (optional)

Mix cranberries, pineapple, marshmallows and sugar together.  Let sit overnight in the refrigerator.  An hour before serving, add whipped cream and nuts.  Enjoy!

Best Homemade Salad Dressing

DIY Salad Dressing

Last week, I hosted some friends over at my home for our monthly Mahjong night.  We rotate homes each month and delight in socializing, eating yummy food and playing Mahjong.  Because it’s been so hot here (90’s in October!), I decided to make a salad.  Everyone loved my dressing and asked for the recipe.  I thought why not share it here!


  • 1/3 C. Cider Vinegar
  • 1 t. Dry Mustard
  • 1 t. Grated Onion
  • 1 T. Celery Seed
  • 1/3 C. Sugar
  • 1 t. Salt


Combine ingredients then add 1 C. Vegetable Oil.


Gooey Pumpkin Cake

My dessert was also a hit.  Since it’s October, it felt only fitting to bake a pumpkin dessert for the evening.  I told the gals they could find the recipe here on my website.  I thought it was only a few years ago that I posted it.  However, when I went back to look for it, I found that I posted it back in 2009…yikes!  I can’t believe it!  So here it is again.  If you haven’t tried it–it’s a must–really!


Cake Ingredients:
  • 1 pkg yellow cake mix
  • 1 egg
  • 8 T. melted butter


Mix these ingredients together.  And be forewarned it will take some work as it’s gonna be quite crumbly!  Then pat this into the bottom of a greased 9″ x 13″ pan.

 Filling Ingredients:
  • 8 oz. soft cream cheese
  • 15 oz can of pumpkin
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 8 T. melted butter
  • 16 oz powdered sugar
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 1 t. nutmeg
Start by blending the cream cheese and pumpkin until smooth and creamy.  Add eggs, vanilla and butter until blended.  Then mix in the powdered sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Pour filling on top of cake mix.  Then bake for 40-50 minutes at 350 degrees.  Do NOT overbake this.  It will have a gooey center–you want this!
Serve warm with fresh whipped cream or Cool Whip works just fine too 🙂

Reindeer Noses

Looking for a quick, easy and yummy treat for the holiday season?  Give Reindeer Noses a try!

Festive Reindeer Noses

I make these with the kids a lot because they are super easy and everyone loves the salty sweet combo of them.  This particular batch I made last week for an organization I volunteer with…Cake 4 Kids (   They were participating in a silent auction last week and needed some “mini desserts” to auction off.

Want to give them a try?  Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Hershey Kisses (unwrapped)
  • Plain M&Ms
  • Waffle or mini pretzels

Preheat your oven to 170 degrees.  Line a baking pan with parchment paper and then place 1 Hershey Kiss on each pretzel.  Place in oven for 5-6 minutes (enough time for the kiss to soften).  Then immediately place one 1 M&M in the center of each softened kiss and let cool.

Simple right?  Enjoy!


Easy Pumpkin Bars w/ Cream Cheese Frosting

pumpkin cream cheese bars

So last week was a rough one at the Baldwin household.  Cold season hit us in full-force.  The first cold of the season slowly worked it’s way through our family taking a single victim at a time.  By the end of the week when it was time for me to make a dessert to bring to our Holiday Extravaganza on Saturday I was definitely NOT up to doing any of my usual from scratch desserts.  What to do??

Mmmmh, I had a box of Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Bread & Muffin mix in the pantry.  But how could I make this into something a little more “desserty” than a simple bread?  Add a few additional ingredients and hope for a yummy result!  And yummy result I guess I had because I had several people ask me for the recipe.  So here it is…

Easy Pumpkin Bars

  • 1 box Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Bread & Muffin mix
  • eggs, oil & water per box instructions
  • 1 box Pumpkin Spice Jell-O Pudding (3.4 oz)–to add moisture!

Mix all ingredients and place in a greased 9″x13″ pan and bake for less time than box indicates (approx. 20 minutes).  Let cool and then frost with this yummy cream cheese recipe (one of my absolute favorites–I think it’s the almond extract!!!)

Yummy Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1/2 C. butter (soft)
  • 1-8 oz cream cheese (soft)
  • 3 C. powdered sugar
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 t. almond extract

Beat ingredients together until smooth.  Frost bars and enjoy!