Monday, December 26, 2011

Peppermint Bark Rice Krispie Treats

These are awesome, easy and tasty! I made these for our Family Christmas Party and they were gone in a flash. From, of course, Our Best Bites.

Peppermint Bark Rice Krispie Treats
Recipe by Our Best Bites

1 10.5 ounce bag peppermint mini marshmallows*
4 tablespoons real butter, plus extra to butter pan
5-6 cups rice krispie style cereal (I like mine a little more marshmallowy)
3 tablespoons semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
3 tablespoons white chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil, divided
a few drops (about 1/8 teaspoon) peppermint extract
2-3 medium sized candycanes, crushed

*In place of the peppermint marshmallows, use regular marshmallows and add about 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract to melted marshmallow mixture. Or more to taste, I’m guessing on the amount.

Line a 9×13 pan with foil and lightly butter bottom and about 1 inch up sides.

Melt butter in a very large bowl in the microwave. Add marshmallows and stir to coat. Heat in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. (You can do that whole process on the stovetop as well.) Add rice krispie cereal and stir to evenly combine. With buttered hands, press mixture into prepared pan.

Place white chocolate chips and 1/4 teaspoon oil in a small bowl. Heat in microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Repeat same process with semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips and add a few drops of peppermint extract. Drizzle both chocolates on top of rice krispie treats and sprinkle candy canes on top. Let sit until chocolate is set, place pan in fridge to speed process along. Cut into squares and eat up.

How to Cook a Large Roast

I had to make a roast for our family Christmas party, which fed about 35 people. This is an awesome way to cook your roast if you are cooking for a large crowd. (I need to post this so that I remember how to do it again next year for our Taylor Family Christmas Party).

  1. Rub meat with meat tenderizer
  2. Rub in kosher salt
  3. Mix a packet of French's Marinade with a little water and pour over roast
  4. Place in a large pan and tin foil 3 or 4 times, enough so that no steam with escape and change where the fold is.
  5. Cook at 450 for 4 hours (not frozen)
  6. Stick meat thermometer in to see if it is done. Cover the hole with a rock if you need to put the roast back in the over for longer.

And the roast comes out delicious and moist. I go this recipe from Cindy, who got this recipe from a caterer.

If have any questions while you are cooking, just post a comment or call me.

Turkey Brine

With the help of my husband, who is so awesome in the kitchen, I made my first turkey dinner this Christmas. I brined the turkey the night before and honestly it made the turkey to DIE for. It was the best turkey I have tasted. It made the meat so moist and the gravy so tasty.

Turkey Brine (From


  • 1 gallon vegetable broth
  • 1 cup sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon crushed dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon dried sage
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon dried savory
  • 1 gallon ice water


  1. In a large stock pot, combine the vegetable broth, sea salt, rosemary, sage, thyme, and savory. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently to be sure salt is dissolved. Remove from heat, and let cool to room temperature.
  2. When the broth mixture is cool, pour it into a clean 5 gallon bucket. Stir in the ice water.
  3. Wash and dry your turkey. Make sure you have removed the innards. Place the turkey, breast down, into the brine. Make sure that the cavity gets filled. Place the bucket in the refrigerator overnight.
  4. Remove the turkey carefully draining off the excess brine and pat dry. Discard excess brine.
  5. Cook the turkey as desired reserving the drippings for gravy. Keep in mind that brined turkeys cook 20 to 30 minutes faster so watch the temperature gauge.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Chicken noodle soup

Like taco soup, I'm sure there are a million and one chicken noodle soup recipes. Well I'm here to tell you that this one tops them all for taste and ease. I found this recipe in a old random recipe book my mom had from my great- aunts relief society or something like that and I probably make it at least twice a month. Especially in the winter. I usually make some baking powder biscuits to go with it. I buy a rotisserie chicken and boil the bones and skin to get yummy flavorful broth but if your not into that kind of thing used the canned stuff. Sorry for no picture but I'm lame like that.

Chicken Noodle Soup

4 cups chicken broth
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 cooked chicken breasts, cut in pieces (I use the rotisserie chicken)
3 cups cut raw carrot (however big you want the pieces)
2 stalks celery, diced
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp basil
1/2 soup can water
2 cups raw noodles (I break up spaghetti or linguine noodles in thirds)

Place all ingredients in crockpot. Mix and cook on low setting for 4-5 hours. *Unless you want soggy noodles, don't add noodles until about the last 1-2 hours). You can also make this on the stove. Just put it all into a big pot and let boil until the veggies and noodles are cooked. DELISH!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Taco Soup!!!

I'm sure everyone has their own tried, tested and true Taco Soup recipes... but I'll post mine anyway. I've  been seriously addicted (like, "I may need an intervention" type of addicted) to Taco soup lately. A little background info: I hated Taco soup for 24 years. My Mom made it a lot, or at least it seemed like she did... probably because it was something I never looked forward to. Truth be told, I don't even think I had ever actually TASTED it. I just assumed because it had onions... corn... beans... basically everything I didn't like (I was piiiiiii-cky) that I wouldn't like it.

Last year, however, things changed. We went to dinner at a friends house and they were having.... [gulp]... Taco Soup. Since I didn't want to be a jerkface by refusing to eat it, I decided I would spoon out a nice small bowl for myself and force it down my gullet.

I had three huge bowls.

It. Was. Delicious. I got the recipe, tweaked it a bit, and have made it MORE times than I care to admit in the last 2 months. Gotta make up for all those years of refusing to eat it.

Enough talk. To the recipe!


  • 2-ish lbs Ground Beef
  • 1 pkg (or ¼ cup) Taco seasoning
  • 1 pkg Ranch powder mix
  • 1 onion (chopped.. sliced... however you like it!)
  • 1-2 12oz cans corn
  • 1 14oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 small can chopped green chilies (Old El Paso - usually in the Taco "supplies" area) 
  • 2 14oz cans sliced stewed tomatoes (sometimes I can't find the sliced ones... so I just cut them up with my cooking scissors once they're in the soup... lol)
  • 1 14oz can tomato sauce
  • 2 19oz cans kidney beans *the BEST part!*

In a large pot brown meat, drain, stir in chopped onions (I like to saute them for a bit, 'cause I'm not a fan of undercooked onions) and add all other ingredients plus 1 cup of water. Do NOT drain the canned goods, add all the canned juices into the soup! Cook until heated or until onions are tender. I heat mine until it starts boiling. There's nothing better than a steaming hot, burn your tongue, bowl of soup! Serve with fritos or doritos, cheese, and nice big dollop of sour cream (it's a MUST, people!)... THEN ENJOY! Make sure you have a napkin handy, 'cause those chilies will make your nose run like crazy.  Haha!

You'll have leftovers... 'cause it makes a lot. But like most other soups, it's even BETTER the next day!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Candy Cane Kiss Cookies

I don't even want to post these because they are so good. Because I want to keep this secret to myself. But this secret isn't really mine, it is on our best bites blog, AND Krystyn brought these over last Christmas. But honestly, seriously I believe these are the best cookies I have tasted. Because I LOVE chocolate/mint combo. Believe me, these won't last long.

P.S. I found the Candy Cane Kisses at Shoppers and at Safeway.

Candy Cane Kiss Cookies
Recipe by Our Best Bites

1/2 c. butter-flavored shortening (I just used regular shortening and I couldn't even taste the difference)
1/2 c. real butter
1 c. brown sugar
1 c. white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
optional: 1 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 c. flour, lightly spooned into measuring cups and leveled with a knife
1/4 c. + 2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 c. dark chocolate chips
48 Hershey’s Candy Cane Kisses, unwrapped

Preheat oven to 350.

Cream together softened butter, shortening, brown sugar, and white sugar for 1-2 minutes on medium-high speed or until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla. Meanwhile, combine the baking powder, baking soda, salt, flour, and cocoa powder. Add to the butter/sugar mixture and mix until combined. Mix in the chocolate chips.

Drop the dough by the tablespoonful onto an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the centers are set but still soft. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 1-2 minutes. Top each cookie with an unwrapped Candy Cane Kiss. Allow to cool completely, long enough for the Kiss to harden. If necessary, after the cookies have cooled, they can be placed in the refrigerator or freezer to re-solidify the Kiss.