A simple side of sweet potato

Back home, sweet potatoes were quite the trend for the last year or two. It seemed most, if not all restaurants began to offer some sort of sweet potato side dish, french fry option, or meal choice on their menus. I can’t say I’ve seen sweet potato fries as a “chip” option here in Australia, but I can say they have plenty available at the grocery stores. Since I’m semi-sweet potato obsessed(thank God Brandon is to!), we’ve been buying a few each week to incorporate into our dinners. My favorite way to prepare them is definitely as baked sweet potato fries; it’s easy, simple, and always delicious. However, my Mom shared a recipe with me that sounded just as easy, so I gave it a try. It incorporates one onion, and one large sweet potato (or 2-3 smaller sweet potatoes) and a few other small ingredients. It takes only minutes to prep, then let the oven does the rest of the work. I think you’ll like this, I know we did!

A simple side of sweet potato
serves 2

1 very large sweet potato (or 2-3 smaller)
1 yellow onion
2 TBSP brown sugar
2 TBSP balsamic vinegar
2 TBSP canola oil (olive oil would work, too)
2 tsp soy sauce

1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 degrees Celsius!) and cover a cookie sheet with tinfoil. Spray with cooking spray.
2. Chop sweet potatoes into cubes and chop onion up in similar sizes. Place in large mixing bowl.

3. Add oil, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, and brown sugar to the potatoes and onion bowl. Mix well, then spread over cookie sheet.
4. Cook for 20-25 minutes, toss, and cook for another 5-10 minutes, or until browned.
5. Enjoy along side your protein and vegetable of choice!  We had ours along with roasted broccoli and veggie burgers.

sweetpot last

I judge the success of a dish by how much is leftover…we scraped the cookie sheet. I guess that’s a good sign?

What’s your favorite way to eat sweet potatoes?


Easter Snickers Fruit Salad

mini snicks!

I inherited a love of Snickers from my Mother. My Mom, a nutritionist, of all people!! It’s sort-of a family tradition to freeze all candy, so she has always placed the little fun-sized treats on the freezer door. Naturally, I’ve become HOOKED on doing the same thing. My 85 year old Nana does this too…and that‘s right where all the grandchildren head when we visit her!

Have you ever had a frozen snickers? They’re unreal! It’s like eating a caramel filled with peanuts, but it’s easier to chew! They.are.addicting. Needless to say, I try not to buy them for myself too often, because living alone and buying bags of fun-size candy=disaster. For this recipe though, I made an exception. The addition of Snickers to this fruit salad is unreal. Fruit+chocolate=winner. Trust me!

Snickers Fruit Salad

3 green apples, chopped (I used granny smith)
3 red apples, chopped ( I used gala)
1 small can pineapple tidbits, drained
8 mini or two regular sized Snickers, chopped
1 cup mini marshmallows
12 oz cool whip ( I used fat-free)
1/2 cups nuts (optional) – I used glazed walnuts!

Chop the fruit and snickers.

chopped fruit

choppin' the candy

Drain the pineapple. Combine with the rest of the ingredients, and chill for about an hour in the refrigerator. Enjoy!!!!!!!

all together now

Fruit salad at it's finest

I’ll be enjoying this as a side dish and for dessert tomorrow. You should too!

Happy Easter :)

Not Your Average Roasted Vegetables

Looking for a way to spruce up your salads or put a new spin on veggies? You’ve found it. Move over, roasted vegetables. There’s a new queen in town. Say hello to our honey maple roasted friends.

Originally from Cooking Light, I modified it slightly and used what I had on hand, plus added some light maple syrup for a little extra sweetness (I couldn’t help it, it’s my ever-present sweet tooth talking).

This recipe is ever-so simple and ever-so yummy. The only thing you have to have patience for is chopping the vegetables. Chop, Mix, Bake, Eat. It’s as simple as that.

Honey Maple Roasted Root Vegetables



2 cups coarsely chopped peeled sweet potato (about 1 large)

1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped peeled butternut squash

1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped parsnip (about 2 medium) —I used more!

1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped carrot (about 2 medium)

1/4 cup honey

3 tablespoons light maple syrup (I used Aunt Jemima’s)

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

Cooking spray



Preheat oven to 450°.

Combine all ingredients except the cooking spray in a large bowl; toss to coat.


Place vegetable mixture on a jelly-roll pan coated with tinfoil and cooking spray.


Bake at 450° for 35 minutes or until vegetables are tender and begin to brown, stirring every 15 minutes.

honey maple goodness

If you read the original recipe, you’ll notice I substituted butternut squash for turnip, eliminated the shallots, and added in the maple syrup. With their measurements, this serves 8. I maybe got five servings out of my batch? I’ve enjoyed it as a side, on my salads, in a sandwich, and straight from the fridge!  I like to think a vegetable addiction can be classified as a good addiction. :)

Quick Cornbread Casserole

Comfort food. What’s not to love? And what’s better than the smell of freshly baked
cornbread? Lucky for me, I had the task of baking (and smelling) cornbread everyday from
the months of May thru September for 5 glorious summers of my life. A random fact,
but it’s the truth. I worked as an assistant manager/ice-cream scooper at Shaws Ridge
a homemade ice-cream shop and barbeque barn restaurant located in Southern
Maine. It’s my favorite job to I’ve had to date. Of course it helps when your co-workers
are your sister and your best friends!

I loved baking the cornbread, but I didn’t particularly enjoy the lengthy baking time or the amount of butter I consumed while making/eating it! A few months ago, I stumbled upon a recipe in my Cooking Light cook book for “Easy Corn Casserole”. It caught my eye immediately. Lately, due to the freezing temperatures, I’ve been cooking this every few weeks. It’s a great addition to any meat dish (such as chili), an excellent side for a salad, or great for a snack. Truthfully, I’ve even eaten it for breakfast. The best part: it provides leftovers, and it’s so easy to freeze, thaw out, and then reheat in the oven.
This recipe is sure to please your taste buds and your tummy!

¼ cup egg beaters
¼ cup butter, melted
1 (8 ¾ ounce) can no-salt-added whole-kernel corn, drained
1 (8 ¾ ounce) can no-salt-added cream-style corn
1 package (8 ½ ounce) corn muffin mix (I used Jiffy)
1 (8-ounce) carton plain fat-free yogurt ( I used Dannon Vanilla!)
Cooking spray

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine first six ingredients in a medium bowl; stir well.

yummy dough

3. Pour into an 8-inch square baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake for 45 minutes or until slightly browned.

baking away

browned and beautiful

cornbread bites!

Have a Merry meal :)