The Best Chocolate Coconut Cupcakes Recipe


These super rich and totally indulgent chocolate coconut cupcakes are filled with coconut cream, topped with thick coconut buttercream and finished off with a hearty sprinkle of toasted coconut! These are sure to be any coconut lovers new best friend!

yield 1 dozen cupcakes

Ingredients

For the cupcakes:
3 tablespoons coconut OR canola oil
1 stick unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs + 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, not packed
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup full fat sour cream
1/2 cup hot coffee OR hot water

For the coconut cream:
1 cup heavy whipping cream
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 stick butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 ounces sweetened shredded coconut

For the buttercream:
6 ounces unsalted butter, very soft
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons coconut milk
1 (7 ounce) package sweetened flaked coconut, divided

Instructions

For the cupcakes:

  1. Preheat oven to 350� F.
  2. Place cupcake liners in muffin tin. Spray lightly with PAM cooking spray. *The cooking spray really helps the cupcakes not stick to the liners.
  3. Visit The Best Chocolate Coconut Cupcakes @ bakerbynature.com for full instructions.

Brown Sugar Walnut Baked Brie Recipe


Brown Sugar Walnut Baked Brie is the perfect blend of savory and sweet and makes a delicious holiday appetizer recipe! Serve it with fresh bread, apple slices, or crackers for a quick and easy snack that�s sure to please all your holiday guests!

Ingredients

1 large 16 oz. round brie cheese
1/2 c. chopped walnuts
1/8 c. Truvia Brown Sugar Blend
2 tsp. fresh rosemary chopped
1/4 tsp. ground ginger

Instructions

  1. Cut top rind off of brie; discard.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine remaining ingredients and stir.
  3. Visit Brown Sugar Walnut Baked Brie @ lemontreedwelling.com for full instructions.

Chicken and Dumplings Soup Recipe


This Chicken and Dumplings Soup is simple, delicious and filled with chunks of chicken and biscuit pieces along with your favorite veggies!

Serves: 6

INGREDIENTS

4 cups chicken broth
1 (10.75 oz.) can cream of chicken soup
2 (13 oz.) cans cooked and shredded chicken
1- 8.75 oz. can corn
1 - 14.5 oz. can sliced carrots
2 tubes - 7.5 oz refrigerated biscuits - cut into quarters.
fresh parsley

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In a large pot, heat broth, chicken and soup to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
  2. Visit Chicken and Dumplings Soup @ lilluna.com for full instructions.

Chocolate Poke Cake from Scratch Recipe


This chocolate poke cake from scratch is one of the most amazing and moist cakes you�ll ever have! A secret ingredient brings out the chocolatey goodness in the cake while adding a rich layer of homemade pudding keeps it extra moist!  It�s all topped off with a simple one minute chocolate frosting!

YIELD: 15 SERVINGS

INGREDIENTS:

CAKE
1 3/4 cups flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs
1 cup brewed coffee , cooled
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

CHOCOLATE PUDDING LAYER
2/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 tablespoons cornstarch
pinch of salt
2 1/4 cups milk
1 tablespoon butter

FROSTING
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup butter , softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS:

CAKE

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease & flour a 9�13 inch pan.
  2. Combine milk & lemon juice and set aside. (The mixture will thicken slightly)
  3. Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda & baking powder in a large bowl.
  4. Visit Chocolate Poke Cake from Scratch @ spendwithpennies.com for full directions.

Vegan Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe


This thick and creamy vegan broccoli cheese soup recipe is loaded with �cheesy� goodness that will quench your craving for comfort food any night of the week. Kid-friendly, vegan, dairy-free and gluten-free.

Servings: 6 -8 servings

Ingredients

1/3 cup raw cashews, soaked and drained
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 medium carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
2 cups of water
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (For color, not heat)
3 Tbsp nutritional yeast (Or more to taste)
1- quart vegetable broth
2 lbs broccoli florets (Fresh or frozen)
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Parsley for garnish

Instructions

  1. Soak cashews in water for 1 hour, drain and discard water. Set aside.
  2. Add oil to a dutch oven and cook the diced onions for 5 minutes over medium heat. Add cubed potatoes, thinly sliced carrots, a pinch of salt and 2 cups of water. Cover and let cook for 20-25 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. Almost all of the water should be absorbed by now.
  3. Visit Vegan Broccoli Cheese Soup @ staceyhomemaker.com for full instructions and notes of recipe.

Kahlua Chocolate Poke Cake Recipe

This Kahlua Chocolate Poke Cake is a chocolate cake that's baked in, soaked in, and frosted with Kahlua. It's the ultimate boozy dessert!

Servings: 20

Ingredients

Cake:
1 Box Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix
3.9 oz package Jell-O Instant Chocolate Fudge OR Vanilla Pudding
4 eggs
1 cup sour cream
� cup vegetable oil
� cup Kahlua
1 tbsp vanilla extract
� tsp sea salt
1� cup mini chocolate chips

Liquid:
1/2 cup Kahlua
12 oz. sweetened condensed milk

Frosting:
1 1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup Kahlua
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1/3 cup instant chocolate fudge Jell-O pudding mix dry

Optional:
Chocolate Sprinkles

Instructions

Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl or stand mixer, combined all of the cake ingredients until fully mixed and pour into the prepared pan. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until toothpick comes clean from center of cake. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

Liquid:

  1. Visit Kahlua Chocolate Poke Cake @ sugarandsoul.co for full instructions.

Five insurance considerations for the new year


The start of a new year is a natural time to re-evaluate your insurance coverage needs. Changing circumstances may require updated policies. Did you have a baby? Get married? Purchase a new home or car? If so, you'll want to check whether you have the right protection.

Your agent or company can help determine whether your coverage is adequate or if you might need to make adjustments. Even if you haven't experienced a life-changing event, you could be eligible for discounts or new insurance products that may better serve your needs.

1. Life insurance
Changes�such as a birth, divorce, remarriage or even a new mortgage or new job�are indicators that you might need to make changes to your life insurance policy.

Read your policy carefully and answer these questions:
  • Do premiums or benefits vary from year to year?
  • Do the total benefits grow over time?
  • Are there benefits that are not guaranteed?
  • Do premiums change over time?
  • What happens if I quit paying premiums � do I maintain some of the benefits?
  • Are there any impacts associated with interest earned on the policy?
  • In what situations and through what procedures can you assess cash values?
  • Can the policy be converted into another form of insurance or annuity?
In the case of the birth of a child or a new marriage, you may want to consider increasing your death benefit. Check with your agent to see if your insurance company requires a physical exam before increasing your coverage levels.

Alternatively, paying off your mortgage, retirement or children finishing college might mean that you can lower your life insurance coverage and premiums. Ask your life insurance company whether you have the option of "conversion privileges" from your current term life insurance policy to a new whole life insurance policy. You may also be able to expand your death benefit so it can be used while you are still living.

2. Homeowner or renter insurance
In 2017, we witnessed a significant number of natural disasters. If you live in an area prone to floods, earthquakes or wildfires, you should make sure you're properly covered. These disasters can be costly and may not be covered under a standard policy. Discuss the possibility of adding coverage for these perils with your agent or insurance company.

The start of a new year is a good time to update your home inventory and make sure your homeowner or renter policy is up-to-date. Take photos or video of your possessions and remember to note valuable antiques, artwork or jewelry. You can create a home inventory from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC's) free smartphone app, myHOME Scr.APP.book, which you can download from iTunes or Google Play. You can also print a paper version of your home inventory.

Remember to add any new expensive or sizable gifts to your home inventory. Include as many details as you can and take photos of each item. Most basic home insurance policies have standard limits for big-ticket items like electronics, art, jewelry or sporting equipment. You may need special coverage, so call your agent to discuss changes for your policy.

3. Auto insurance

Have you had any changes to your driving habits or the vehicles that you drive? If so, contact your agent to ensure your auto policy will cover you in case of an accident.
  • Liability insurance is the part of the policy that pays for any injury or damage if you cause an accident. If your liability insurance is too low, you may be legally exposed for any damages above your liability limits.
  • Review your deductibles for comprehensive and collision coverage. This is the amount you will pay if your car is damaged or totaled without fault of another driver. Raising or lowering this amount can affect your premium.
  • Make sure you have a copy of your insurance card and your insurance agent or company's number in your vehicle at all times.
  • If you are in a collision, you should accurately record the details. The NAIC app WreckCheck, which you can download from iTunes or Google Play, assists you through the process of gathering information following an accident. It allows you to easily email your notes directly to your agent to assist with the claims process.  
4. Health insurance
You may have recently enrolled or changed your health insurance through your employer, Medicare or your state exchange. Make sure you have new insurance cards and paperwork before you visit a doctor.
  • Check your policy's provider lists to make sure visits to your doctor and any specialists are still covered by your policy, as in-network or preferred provider lists change from year to year.
  • Read through your documents and make note of co-pays for in-network and out-of-network providers to avoid surprises.
  • If you're planning a vacation, check with your insurance carrier to identify urgent care centers and hospitals that accept your insurance coverage. Ask your carrier about applicable co-pays and deductibles if care is needed. Here's an explanation of health insurance terms you may find on your paperwork.
5. Protect yourself from identity theft and fraud  
The Equifax data breach in 2017 exposed the personal information of more than 145 million people. A data breach can potentially expose a consumer's data, putting them at risk for identity theft or other fraudulent activity. Here are some things you can do to protect your identity:
  • Don't give out any personal information�including your social security number or bank information�over the phone. 
  • Consider purchasing identity theft insurance. Several companies offer identity theft insurance, which generally costs between $25 and $60 per year. 
  • When you purchase an insurance policy: 
    • Ask for copies of everything you sign and keep a copy of the initial policy payment receipt or check you gave the agent or company.
    • Call the insurance company if you don't receive a copy of the insurance policy outlining your coverage and its limitations within 30 days of your purchase.
  • The best way to protect yourself from insurance fraud is to research the agent and company you're considering on the OIC's website. 
More information 
Find more information about your insurance needs and tips for choosing the coverage that is best for you and your family at www.InsureUonline.org. If you have questions about your insurance options or about your insurance coverage, visit the OIC's website at www.insurance.wa.gov.

Creamy Garlic Mushroom Soup Recipe


This rich and Creamy Garlic Mushroom Soup is perfect for fall with it's deep earthy flavors. Serve with crusty bread for dipping!

Servings 4 1.5 cups each

INGREDIENTS

1 lb. baby bella mushrooms
1 Tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
Pinch salt & pepper
2 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups vegetable broth*
2 cups water
1/8 tsp dried thyme
1/2 cup heavy cream**
1 tsp soy sauce

RECIPE NOTES
*I use Better Than Bouillon to make my broth.
**You can use half and half instead of heavy cream, but your soup will be less rich.

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Wash the mushrooms to remove any dirt or debris. Slice half of the mushrooms and roughly chop the other half.
  2. Add the olive oil, mushrooms, garlic, and a pinch of salt and pepper to a soup pot. Saut� the mushrooms over medium heat until they have released all of their moisture, all the liquid has evaporated from the bottom of the pot, and the mushrooms become very dark brown.
  3. Visit Creamy Garlic Mushroom Soup @ budgetbytes.com for full instructions.

The Best Raspberry Buttercream Frosting Recipe


Ingredients:

1 cup of Butter � softened (we used Salted Sweet Cream Butter)
5 cups of Powdered Sugar
1 6oz. clamshell of Rasberries

Tools:
Decorating Bags
Wilton 2D Decorating Tip
Mixer
Small Blender/Food Processor
Food Sieve/Strainer

Directions:

Visit: The Best Raspberry Buttercream Frosting @ twosisterscrafting.com for full directions.

Cheesy Cauliflower Muffins Recipe


These low carb, gluten-free, savory muffins are made with cauliflower and cheese. They are great for an appetizer, snack, side dish or quick meal.

YIELD: 11

INGREDIENTS:

3 cups finely pulsed raw cauliflower florets (cauliflower should be pulsed until they resemble coarse/large crumbs; 3 cups will be about 1/2 of a large head of cauliflower but please measure it out)
2 large eggs
1/2 cup + 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup almond flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp dry Italian seasoning herb blend
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Line a cupcake/muffin pan with cupcake liners. I prefer to use parchment cupcake liners* as the muffins will not stick to them at all.
  2. Visit Cheesy Cauliflower Muffins @ kirbiecravings.com for full directions.

No Bake Eggnog Cheesecake Trifle Recipe


Add this No Bake Eggnog Cheesecake Trifle to your holiday party plans. The layers of creamy cheesecake, crunchy cookies, and juicy berries will impress everyone as they dig in.

Yield: 1 large trifle

Ingredients

1 - 16 ounce package gingersnaps, chopped
1 - 3.4 ounce box instant vanilla pudding
1 1/4 cups eggnog
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 - 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
1/2 teaspoon rum extract
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg + extra for garnish
6 cups fresh raspberries + 6 for garnish
10 gingerbread boy cookies
mint leaves, optional

Instructions

  1. Place a metal bowl and mixer blades in the freezer for 10-20 minutes.
  2. Whisk together the pudding mix and eggnog in a bowl. Place in the refrigerator.
  3. Pour the heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar into the frozen bowl. Beat on high until stiff peaks form. Spoon the whipped cream into another bowl and place in the refrigerator.
  4. Visit No Bake Eggnog Cheesecake Trifle @ insidebrucrewlife.com for full instructions.

Slow Cooker Irish Beef Stew Recipe


Slow Cooker Irish Beef Stew is the ultimate comfort food. Big chunks of tender beef with potatoes and carrots in a thick, hearty gravy. SO good!

Servings: 10

Ingredients

1 1/2 lb chuck roast cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces or pre-cut stew meat
1/4 cup flour
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes halved or quartered depending on size
1 lb baby carrots
2 Tbsp butter
1 yellow onion diced
3 cloves garlic minced
3 cans beef broth approximately 40 ounces
1 small can tomato paste
2 Tbsp Balsamic or red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 Tbsp cornstarch + 2 Tbsp cold water
1 Tbsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried parsley flakes
2 bay leaves
Fresh parsley for garnish

Instructions

  1. Cut roast into 1 1/2 inch bite size chunks and place them in a gallon size resealable bag. Add flour, salt, and pepper. Shake bag until the meat is coated with flour.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large heavy bottom skillet or pot. Add coated meat and brown each piece on all sides.
  3. While meat is browning, cut potatoes and carrots and place both in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  4. Visit Slow Cooker Irish Beef Stew @ favfamilyrecipes.com for full instructions.

Cherry Cupcake with Cherry Coke Frosting Recipe


The sweet taste of your favorite summer drink in just a few bites! Rich chocolate cherry cupcakes with Cherry Coke in the batter AND the frosting.

Serves: 24 Cupcakes

Ingredients

For The Cupcakes
1 Box Devils Food Cake Mix + Ingredients Called For On The Box
1 Cup Regular (NOT Diet) Coca Cola
? cup Maraschino Cherry Juice
24 Maraschino Cherries

For The Cherry Coke Buttercream Frosting:
1� Cup Butter, Softened
5 Cups Powdered Sugar
2 Tablespoons of Coca Cola
1 Tablespoon Maraschino Cherry Juice
24 Maraschino Cherries
Red Food Coloring

Instructions

For The Cherry Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cupcake tin with paper liners.
  2. Prepare batter according to the box directions substituting the Coca Cola and the Cherry Juice for the water. Do NOT add any water.
  3. Visit Cherry Cupcake with Cherry Coke Frosting @ bakingbeauty.net for full instructions.

The BEST Crock Pot Beef Stew Recipe

Slow Cooker Beef Stew made with tender chunks of beef, loads of vegetables and a simple mixture of broth and spices that yields the BEST, easiest beef stew ever!

Servings 8 -10

Ingredients

4 TBSP olive oil
2 tsp minced garlic
2 lbs trimmed beef chuck cut into 1-2-inch cubes
about 1/4 cup of flour tossed with meat to coat (OPTIONAL: add 1/2 tsp seasoned meat tenderizer) 
5-10 red potatoes diced
1 medium onion chopped
2 cups sliced carrots about 3-4
2 cups sliced celery 3-4 stalks
1 cup of red cooking wine**
1 cup beef stock or canned beef broth
1 can diced tomatoes drained (14.5 oz)
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp allspice
8- oz container of sliced mushrooms (optional)
2 tsp cornstarch
salt & pepper, to taste

Instructions

QUICK METHOD: 

  1. Turn crockpot on low. Toss all vegetables and meat in the crockpot. Combine spices (except bay leaf), oil, cooking wine, beef broth and whisk lightly to combine. Pour over meat and vegetables. Add in bay leaf.
  2. Give it stew a light stir, cover and cook on low for 9-10 hours, medium 7-8 hours, high 6-7 hours.
  3. Visit The BEST Crock Pot Beef Stew @ butterwithasideofbread.com for full instructions and MORE DEVELOPED FLAVOR METHOD.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Cake Recipe


Pumpkin Cheesecake Cake: two layers of delicious pumpkin cake with a creamy cheesecake center. Frosted with cream cheese frosting!

yield: SERVES 12-15

INGREDIENTS:

FOR THE PUMPKIN CAKE LAYERS:
1 can (15oz) pure pumpkin puree
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup apple sauce
4 eggs
2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground nutmeg

FOR THE CHEESECAKE LAYER:
2 pkg (8oz each) cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup granulated sugar
pinch of salt
2 eggs
1/3 cup sour cream
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract

FOR THE FROSTING:
1/2 cup butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 cup powdered sugar
3 Tbsp heavy cream
3 Tbsp walnuts, chopped
1 Tbsp caramel sauce (Hershey's caramel ice cream topping)

DIRECTIONS:

FOR THE CHEESECAKE LAYER:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Using a large roasting pan on the lower 2/3 of the oven, preheat the pan too!
  2. Prepare springform pan by wrapping bottom of pan (outside) with double layer of foil. Spray pan with nonstick baking spray and line bottom (inside) with a circle of parchment paper.
  3. Meanwhile, boil a kettle of water to use later.
  4. Visit Pumpkin Cheesecake Cake @ shugarysweets.com for full directions.

Homemade Gingerbread Loaf Recipe


The spicy homemade Gingerbread Loaf made with ginger, cinnamon, allspice, cloves and molasses is such a lovely treat to enjoy with coffee or tea. Drizzle with a simple vanilla glaze for a festive treat that tastes just like the holidays.

YIELD: 12

INGREDIENTS:

For gingerbread loaf:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup molasses
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For vanilla glaze drizzle:*
1 cup confectioners� sugar
1 tablespoon milk (more, as needed)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Note:
*Vanilla glaze is optional.

DIRECTIONS:

For gingerbread loaf:

  1. Adjust rack to middle of oven. Preheat oven to 350-degrees F. Grease and flour a 9�5-inch loaf pan.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, allspice and ground cloves.
  3. Visit Homemade Gingerbread Loaf @ shewearsmanyhats.com for full directions.

Oreo White Chocolate Pudding Peppermint Cookies Recipe


Soft white chocolate pudding cookies with holiday Oreos, white chocolate chips, and candy cane pieces! Everyone loves these festive cookies!

yield: 3 DOZEN COOKIES

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 (3.4 oz) package white chocolate instant pudding mix
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups chopped Oreos (I used holiday Oreos)
1 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup crushed candy canes

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat baking mat and set aside.
  2. Visit Oreo White Chocolate Pudding Peppermint Cookies @ twopeasandtheirpod.com for full directions.

Vegan Corn Chowder Recipe


Hearty and healthy veggie-packed vegan corn chowder. Blended up corn, potato, and coconut milk make the chowder base for this super delicious meal!

SERVINGS: 4 SERVINGS

INGREDIENTS

4 ears corn shucked and steamed
2 large red potatoes peeled and chopped
3 tablespoons coconut oil or olive oil
1 large white onion
5 cloves large garlic minced
3 large carrots peeled and chopped
3 large stalks celery chopped
1 large red bell pepper cored and chopped
1-� teaspoons sea salt
2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
� teaspoon paprika
� teaspoon ground cumin
2/3 cup full-fat canned coconut milk
2 cups water or vegetable broth

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place ears of corn into a large pot and fill with water. Cover the pot with a lid and place on the stove over high heat. Bring to a full boil and cook until corn is plump and juicy, about 5 to 8 minutes.
  2. Use tongs to remove corn from the boiling water and place on a cutting board.
  3. Chop one of the red potatoes in half and carefully place into the same pot of boiling water you used to cook the corn. Allow potato to cook until soft, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  4. Visit Vegan Corn Chowder @ theroastedroot.net for full instructions.

Raspberry Cheesecake Chocolate Cupcakes Recipe


Chocolate cupcakes with a cheesecake pudding center and a raspberry buttercream on top makes these cupcakes disappear whenever we take them to parties.

Yield: 24 cupcakes

Ingredients

1 box chocolate cake mix
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk
1/2 package instant cheesecake pudding mix (1/2 of a 3.4 oz box of Jello)
1 cup Cool Whip
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
4 Tablespoons raspberries, smashed (keep juice with it)
4 cups powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
24 raspberry M&M�s
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 teaspoon shortening

Instructions

  1. Prepare the cake mix according to the directions on the back of the box. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full and bake at 350 degrees for 18 minutes or until top springs back.
  2. Let cool completely.In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and sour cream on low until creamy. Add the milk and pudding mix and beat until mixed. Fold in the Cool Whip. Set aside.
  3. Visit Raspberry Cheesecake Chocolate Cupcakes @ insidebrucrewlife.com for full instructions.

Take The dQ&A Diabetes Survey - And Have Your Voice Heard

I spoke with the folks at dQ&A last week. YEP, impressed. 
######
There are things I absolutely love about the diabetes products and meds that I use daily and religiously.. and there are things that drive me absolutely bonkers about the diabetes products and meds I use daily and religiously.  
There have been times where I�ve literally said out loud: Clearly, whoever designed this (insert name of diabetes technology, accessory, med, whatever), has never worn/used/taken said diabetes technology, accessory, med, whatever!  
1. It's so incredibly frustrating. 
2. I know I�m not the only one who feels this way.

So how do we get our diabetes POV to the people who make and create? 
A good start is signing up and taking a diabetes survey from dQ&A, ( Diabetes Questions and Answers,) and participating in their patient panel.
Background
dQ&A was created in 2009, with the primary goal of making sure that companies in the diabetes arena (like Insulet, Dexcom, Medtronic, and Abbott Diabetes Care,) know what we want and need when it comes to the diabetes technology, drugs, and innovation. 
Speaking of innovation, dQ&A also works directly with new diabetes companies whose products have yet to hit the market.
Sidebar: 
They also rep our community. Last year dQ&A spoke in front of the FDA in support of the agency considering more than just A1c reduction when deciding whether to approve new diabetes drugs and devices. 
They backed up their claims by using a 3,500-person dQ&A survey to make and bring that point home.
And I'm so damn glad they did - because people with diabetes are more than our A1C, and people with diabetes already get judged more than most. 

You can sign up to take their survey HERE, (results are anonymous, personal info is never shared,) and your feedback about living with diabetes goes directly to the designers and researchers working on today�s - and tomorrow�s diabetes products. 
I�ve taken the survey, it�s easy and doesn�t take much time. 
Sign up today, take the survey - become part of their patient panel and participate in future surveys. Your voice matters - USE IT to help yourself and your community. 

dQ&A�s surveys are global and open to people in the United States, Canada, The UK and Europe.
 A fee is paid to every individual who signs up and takes a survey, in the form of a check, gift certificate, or a donation made to one of the following fab diabetes charities:

US Diabetes Charities

Canadian Diabetes Charities 

UK Diabetes Charities

Lentil Chili Recipe


Serves: 8

INGREDIENTS

2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
4 tsp. chili powder
1 (16 oz.) bag of brown lentils
2 (14.5 oz.) cans no-salt diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf
2 (32 oz.) cartons vegetable stock or chicken stock
? cup fresh chopped cilantro
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
Optional toppings: sour cream, cheddar cheese, croutons, tortilla chips, avocado

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In a large heavy duty dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and red bell pepper; saute the vegetables for 8 minutes or until soft and lightly browned, stirring occasionally.
  2. Stir in garlic and chili powder; cook for 1 minute.
  3. Visit Lentil Chili @ littlebroken.com for full instructions.

Hot Chocolate Cookie Cups Recipe


These Hot Chocolate Cookie Cups made with sugar cookie dough are filled with hot chocolate ganache, have a pretzel handle and mini marshmallows on top! 

Servings: 24

Ingredients

1 package Pillsbury Sugar Cookie Dough
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons hot cocoa mix
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
12 mini pretzels
1 cup Jet-Puffed Mallow Bits
*optional - granulated sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Put 1 tablespoon of the sugar cookie dough into 24 greased mini muffin tins.
  3. Visit Hot Chocolate Cookie Cups @ thegunnysack.com for full instructions.

Best Ever Mushroom Soup Recipe





Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes Recipe


Could there be a better way to serve anything than when covered with a creamy sauce and cheese?  This recipe for Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes is comfort food at it�s finest!

Servings: 4

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups cream (whipping cream heavy cream, low fat half & half - your choice)
1 bay leaf
a good handful of fresh parsley tied with cooking twine.
2 garlic cloves peeled and crushed
2 pounds potatoes (russet or any favorite potato of your choice) peeled & sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese plus more for topping
1 cup grated white cheddar.
Butter for greasing the pan.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Grease a casserole dish with butter.
  3. In a saucepan, heat the cream with the bay leaf, parsley, and garlic and simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Visit Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes @ errenskitchen.com for full instructions.

Eggnog Cupcakes Recipe


These Eggnog Cupcakes are made from scratch with my favorite spice cake and topped with creamy eggnog frosting. The perfect holiday treat!

yield: 24 CUPCAKES

INGREDIENTS:

FOR THE CUPCAKES:
5 egg whites, room temperature
3/4 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 cup cake flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp ground ginger

FOR THE FROSTING:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp rum flavoring
4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup low fat eggnog

DIRECTIONS:

FOR THE CUPCAKES:

  1. Line 24 cupcake tins with paper lines. Set aside.
  2. In small bowl, mix egg whites and 1/4 cup buttermilk. Set aside.
  3. Visit Eggnog Cupcakes @ shugarysweets.com for full directions.

New Medicare cards are coming starting in April

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will start mailing redesigned Medicare cards to beneficiaries in Washington state aft...