Easy Copycat Chipotle Pico de Gallo Recipe

07/30/2014. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Disclosure Policy.

Copycat Chipotle Pico de Gallo Recipe

Do you love Chipotle? Goodness we do! We don’t get fast food often but if I do it is either Chipotle or In-n-Out for sure.

I have previously posted my very favorite salsa recipe and I thought it would be fun to also post a Pico de Gallo recipe that is so simple. And it tastes just like Chipotle.

Now we are mild kind of people in our house so this is a mild recipe. You can for sure amp it up with more Jalapeno.

Pico de Gallo is just delicious with nachos, tacos, fajitas, quesadillas…. really any Mexican food that you love.  You can also grill chicken with a lime marinade and top with this and it would be delish.

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Homemade Cherry-Coconut Granola

07/29/2014. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Disclosure Policy.

Homemade Cherry Coconut Granola Recipe

Here is a really easy and very delicious recipe for homemade granola.  This is a great recipe to save for quick grab n go breakfast once the kiddos are back in school!

I like this for my own breakfast too because I never seem to have the time to make something for myself.

You can scoop this on top of yogurt or fresh fruit or serve it with milk (put it in a mason jar and you can eat it right in the car).

I used dried cherry and coconut for this recipe but you can certainly change things up with other dried fruits or nuts/seeds that you love or have on hand. Easy!

This recipes makes about 2 cups of granola.

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Fast & Easy Homemade Refrigerator Pickles

07/27/2014. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Disclosure Policy.

Homemade Pickles Recipe- so fast and easy!

Oh goodness do my girls love pickles!  I can never resist them either- especially the huge whole ones you sometimes see in gourmet deli sections?  Those always take me back to my childhood.

This summer I decided to add Homemade Pickles to our Summer Fun list because I thought my kid’s would get a kick out of making something they love so much.

These pickles are crazy easy to make.  I believe there are two types of people- bread and butter pickle people and dill pickle people.  We are firmly on the dill side so these are nice and briney and salty and dilly and delicious!

Best of all they literally take minutes to put together.

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Easy Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe

07/24/2014. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Disclosure Policy.

Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe and a free printable label

If your family is like mine, you might look forward to taco night.

We love tacos and it always guarantees a pleasant evening meal without complaints or arguing from my darling little angels.

We usually buy the bulk taco seasoning at Costco and I have never really taken a look at what is inside the container- I just assume spices and stuff to make my tacos yummy. Enough said.

But I ran out of seasoning a few weeks ago and decided to play around making seasoning from scratch.

If taco seasoning is not something you already made, I would encourage you to give it a shot!  It is so easy and very cheap and I personally liked it better then what I used to buy.  I know exactly what goes into my food and I can adjust the recipe to suit out tastes perfectly.

Plus what I found really interesting is that I took the tiny bit of seasoning left in the container and smelled that versus what I had just mixed together and it was a huge difference in aroma.  The homemade seasoning just smelled very vibrant and fresh and the packaged stuff smelled really artificial.   (Give it a shot and see if you agree!)

So if you want to whip this up yourself it is extremely fast.  And you don’t need to stockpile the pantry with tons of jars if you don’t have all the spices needed for the recipe.  My bulk bins at the grocery store have these spices that you can buy in small quantities for pennies.

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Rice Krispies Treats

07/21/2014. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Disclosure Policy.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Rice Krispies Treats- so easy and so delicious!


My girls just love Rice Krispies treats- it is possibly their favorite treat so it is usually our go to dessert for parties and such.

We are always playing with variations on the classic and here is another variation that turned out to be really delicious!

If you are a Reese’s fan (which I am!)- you might give these Chocolate Peanut Butter Rice Krispies a shot and see what you think!

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Quick & Easy Strawberry Jam Recipe

07/18/2014. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Disclosure Policy.

10 Minute Strawberry Jam-- this is so easy and absolutely delicious!  A perfect quick homemade gift!

Oh I have a really delicious recipe for Strawberry jam for you!  This is not really a freezer jam recipe or for canning.  Sometimes in summer I find myself with too many berries or I just want to make a little gift for someone or I just want something quick and easy.

This is a perfect recipe as it only calls for 1 pound of strawberries and it takes like 15 minutes or so in total to make.  And you just won’t believe how delicious this jam is- it is really heavenly and only 3 ingredients needed!

I hope you enjoy this as much as I do:

Quick & Easy Strawberry Jam Recipe
Recipe type: Condiment
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
Fresh and easy Strawberry Jam Recipe.
  • 1 pound strawberries
  • 1 lime
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  1. Wash your berries and slice off the stems.
  2. Place in a medium sized bowl and use a fork or potato masher to start mashing them up.
  3. Add ⅓ cup sugar and mash a bit more.
  4. Add the juice from one fresh lime and stir into the berry mixture.
  5. Transfer the mixture to a saucepan and bring to a simmer.
  6. Once the berries start to bubble increase the heat to boil.
  7. Stir the jam frequently for about 6-10 minutes until it starts to thicken.
  8. Don’t let it burn! Once the berries start to have bubbles all over and it feels thicker to stir, remove from heat and immediately transfer to a jar.
  9. If you prefer chunky jam you are good to go! For a smoother jelly just add to a food processor for a minute or two.


A few notes about this recipe- first I use amazing strawberries from the Farmer’s Market.  They are small and just packed with sweetness and flavor.  If your berries are not as flavorful you might consider adding a little more sugar.

I prefer the lime juice in this recipe which makes the jam so fresh and vibrant and just a little different.  You can substitute a lemon if you prefer.

This makes a small jar of jam that will last in the fridge for about 2 weeks.   I love to serve this with buttered french bread and a small fruit salad for breakfast.  Absolutely delicious!

I made this for a neighbor as a little gift.  The jar above is a double batch of the jam and I included a little pint of berries from the farmer’s market and a loaf of french bread.

Perfect gift for summer!  If you are headed back to school soon wouldn’t this be a lovely idea for the teacher for the first day of school?

Homemade Strawberry Jam - so fast and you won't believe how delicious!

I hope you give this one a shot for a super fast and easy homemade jam.  If you do try it, please come back and let me know what you think!

And here is another recipe you might like for Strawberry lemonade

Quick and easy Strawberry lemonade recipe- so refreshing!

And here is a variation on jam with a quick Blackberry Jam recipe.

Easy Blackberry jam Recipe

And a yum-o 3 ingredient Watermelon Sorbet recipe!

Easy Watermelon Lime Sorbet Recipe




Copycat Sonic Ocean Water Recipe

07/17/2014. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Disclosure Policy.

Copycat Sonic Ocean Water Recipe

It has been a really hot summer this year so I have found myself stopping by Sonic here and there for drinks in the afternoon.  I normally try to avoid sodas but the one thing I just can’t resist as a very occasional treat is Sonic’s Ocean Water.

Have you tried it?

It is a crazy concoction and I think most would probably love it or hate it.  I love it :).

Since Sonic is on the other side of town, I decided to see if I can recreate the recipe myself at home.  Turns out it is so easy to do!

You only need 5 minutes and a few ingredients to make this yourself.

At Sonic the way they make Ocean Water is to add Sprite to a cup with the yummy crushed ice and then a little shot of a special Blue Coconut syrup.  I have never seen the Blue Coconut syrup at a retail store but apparently it is just like the stuff they use to make snow cones.

So you probably need to make the Blue Coconut syrup yourself and that is super easy- just coconut extract and sugar and water.  The coconut extract I have is JR Watkins and it was something like $2 at Walmart in the spice aisle.  I actually had this on hand from making a Coconut Cake for Easter.  I also like to get the Mexican Sprite at Walmart or Safeway or whatever- it is a buck per bottle.

copycat sonic recipe for ocean water

So here goes the recipe I think tastes pretty darn similar to Sonic:

Copycat Sonic Ocean Water Recipe
Recipe type: Beverages, Copycat
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
Super simple copycat Sonic Ocean Water recipe.
  • ½ Tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • ½ teaspoon coconut extract
  • 12oz bottle Sprite
  • squeeze of fresh lime juice (optional)
  • blue food coloring (optional)
  1. Add ½ tablespoon sugar to a small bowl and 1 tablespoon of water.
  2. Mix for just a second and pop in the microwave for about 30 seconds- just to dissolve.
  3. Set the mixture aside to cool.
  4. Fill your glass with crushed ice- or pop some ice cubes into a food processor for a few seconds. (This is optional but darn if those ice chips don’t make things taste better.)
  5. Add your 12oz bottle of Sprite to the glass and set aside.
  6. Come back to your cooled sugar mixture and now add ½ teaspoon coconut extract. Stir.
  7. Add 2 drops of blue food coloring- stir again.
  8. Dump into your glass of Sprite and mix well.
  9. Enjoy!


Very easy and then I like to finish mine off with a little squeeze of lime.  If you are a Sonic Limeade fan you can also order a Blue Coconut Limeade and that is almost the same as the Ocean Water except a tiny bit cheaper.

Now one last note is that the coconut extract has a strong flavor so you might try a little less then 1/2 teaspoon for your first glass and you can always add more to suit your tastes.   My husband can’t stand coconut and I made him try about 7 different variations of this recipe and he liked the version above.

If you want to try another really easy Copycat recipe at home- check out this Homemade Starbucks Passion Tea Lemonade.  Delicious!

Copycat Starbucks Passion Tea Lemonade

Or another really yummy Copycat recipe is this two ingredient homemade magic shell.  It goes on top of ice cream like a decadent hot fudge and then hardens after a few seconds and it is really heavenly.

Homemade Chocolate Magic Shell-- so fast and SO good!

*This recipe is adapted from  I tried to cut way back on the added sugar :)



Monkey Cookies {Banana, Oatmeal and Chocolate Chips!}

07/09/2014. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Disclosure Policy.

Monkey Cookies - perfect low sugar lunchbox treat!

I have a really yummy cookie recipe for you today.  These cookies are very low in sugar- 1 cup for 3 dozen cookies- and I think they are a perfect after school snack for kids or lunchbox treat.

I love these as well- sometimes in the morning with coffee.  These cookies are not really for when you are craving a super sweet sugar cookie or gooey chocolate chip cookie.  These are more like when you want something bread-y and comforting.  Like warm banana bread.  Absolutely delicious but not super sugary and sweet.

These cookies will actually get softer after a day or two- so perfect to make a batch to eat all week.  It does make a lot of cookies so these will also freeze really well.

The recipe does call for fresh pureed coconut.  Don’t let that scare you away because I have two easy substitutions if you don’t want to bother with fresh coconut.  It is super yummy and adds a delicious texture if you do try it :)

Here is the recipe:

Monkey Cookies {Banana, Oatmeal and Chocolate Chips!}
Recipe type: Cookies, Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 36
Monkey cookies- so delicious and a perfect low-sugar lunchbox treat!
  • ½ cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup pureed fresh coconut* (substitutions listed below)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3 very ripe medium bananas
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1¾ cups quick oats
  • Select from the following ingredients, (mixing and matching if you wish) to equal 1 generous cup total:
  • • Chopped nuts – peanuts, pecans, or walnuts
  • • Raisins or other dried fruit
  • • chocolate chips
  1. *To puree coconut, put small chunks of fresh coconut meat in a food processor and process on high for approximately 3 minutes. Coconut will be slightly chunky, and feel oily if you rub it between your fingers.
  2. Heat oven to 375 F.
  3. In a large bowl, beat together the butter, coconut, and brown sugar until light.
  4. Add the egg and ripe bananas (if they are very ripe there is no need to mash them first) and beat until well combined.
  5. Mix in t flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg until thoroughly combined.
  6. Stir in the oats and your selected additions.
  7. Use a cookie scoop or tablespoon to drop cookies at least 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. (or use parchment) Do not flatten the cookie dough.
  8. Bake for approximately 12 minutes. The bottom of the cookie will be brown, but the top should be just beginning to show some color.
  9. Move cookies to racks to cool.


So fresh coconut can be a little bit of a pain but it is super yummy.  I got a whole coconut at Walmart for $1.98 and a small coconut is enough to make this recipe twice.  So you could do a double batch or you can have some extra for snacking- which is what I did.

If you don’t want the bother you can either use 1 cup of dried coconut (either unsweetened or sweetened- depending on your preference).  A second option would be 1/2 cup dried coconut and 1/4 cup coconut oil.  Either way works great!

If you aren’t a huge fan of coconut the flavor is very mild with fresh or dried coconut.  I love coconut but I find the banana and oats to be the most pronounced flavors.

If you decide to make these please come back and let me know what you think!

Here are a few other recipes you might like:

Cinnamon Swirl Bread RecipeCinnamon Swirl Bread

Skinny Mocha Smoothie - perfect pre workout drink or afternoon pick me up!Skinny Mocha Smoothie 

Homemade Slow Cooker Spaghetti SauceHomemade Spaghetti Sauce recipe- dump in the slow cooker and you are done!


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