Ginger Sesame Beef Salad with Quinoa

Updated 3/26/17.

What to make for dinner tonight…? Well this popped into my inbox this morning from Food and Wine Magazine, and I thought that this looked like a good candidate. Here is the original recipe: I added more vegetables and marinated the meat for a few hours, but I otherwise followed the recipe. The dish turned out to be a really nice mix of crunchy vegetables with very tasty, succulent beef. I have to admit that my son found it a bit “strong” so he just picked out and ate the beef chunks and left most of the rest but my husband and I really enjoyed it.

Grating the ginger.  The minced garlic is on the side.

Ginger Sesame Beef Salad with Quinoa

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Healthy ginger beef and vegetable salad that comes together quickly. Good choice for a healthy weeknight meal.

Credit: Food and Wine 



  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon of grated fresh ginger

  • 1 clove of garlic, minced


  • 1 cup of un-cooked quinoa


  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of finely grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil


  • 1 tablespoon of dark sesame oil

  • 1 pound skirt steak, cut into small pieces and sliced against the grain (1/4” thick strips)

  • 1 large Portabello mushroom cut into small cubes

  • 2 tablespoons of fresh minced garlic (2 cloves)

  • 1 teaspoon of fresh grated ginger

  • kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper

  • 1 head of red leaf lettuce (or lettuce of choice), chopped

  • 2 cups of shredded carrot

  • 2 cups of bean sprouts

  • 2 tablespoons of basil leaves, chiffonaded


  1. In a medium bowl whisk together 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of organic rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon of grated fresh ginger and garlic. Add the sliced beef and marinate at least 30 minutes or several hours if possible.
  2. Cook the quinoa without adding salt or oil. I like to use a rice maker. Set the cooked quinoa aside (Can cook this earlier in the day and refrigerate).
  3. In a small bowl whisk the ¼ cup of soy sauce, 1 ½ tablespoons of fresh grated ginger, 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon of lime juice and 2 tablespoons of sesame oil. Set aside.
  4. In a large skillet heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of sesame oil. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for about 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the steak, mushroom, half the shredded carrot and salt and pepper to your taste, and then stir-fry for a few minutes until the steak is cooked to your liking. Remove the steak mixture and add half the bean sprouts and cook for a couple of minutes.
  5. Divide the lettuce between four plates. Top with cooked bean sprouts, meat mixture, uncooked carrots and bean sprouts, cooked quinoa and then the dressing. Garnish with basil.

September 29, 2016, updated March 26, 2017

Stir frying the beef, mushrooms, and carrots
FullSizeRender 15
Finished stir-fry


The quinoa in the rice cooker.
The finished dish



Vegetable Moo Shu

This is an old recipe that I have been making since my kids were pretty young. I started with several different recipes and just combined and modified over the years so much that I am not sure who I can really give credit to. Sometimes I add ground chicken or turkey, but usually we eat it vegetarian style. The egg and bean sprouts have plenty of protein so I don’t really feel a need to add the poultry most of the time. This is a dish that is loaded with vegetables and I was always excited that my kids liked to eat it. I think it was the sweet hoisin sauce and the tortillas that made it not seem like too many vegetables to them. Another little trick is that sometimes I make too much of this and then the next day I have added ground chicken or turkey and turned them into pot stickers. I actually did this the day after I made these – I am just a bit behind in publishing these recipes. So look out for my potsticker recipe in the near future.

Vegetable Moo Shu

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Healthy rendition of a favorite Chinese restaurant dish, loaded with vegetables.

Credit: I have decided that commercial hoisin sauce is full of too much sugar and un-pronounceable ingredients so I used this recipe to make my own sauce this time: Homemade Hoisin Sauce from That said, I have used commercially made Hoisin Sauce for many years and everyone really likes it


  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 large eggs, stirred with a whisk
  • 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons of minced ginger (fresh is best, but bottled works.
  • 1/2 sweet onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup of shredded carrot (1 or 2 large peeled carrots)
  • 1/2 pound of Shiitake mushrooms, chopped
  • 1/2 pound of Cremini mushrooms, chopped
  • 12 oz bag of shredded broccoli slaw (I usually go for the freshly packaged organic kind, but you can throw a head of broccoli in a food processor as well)
  • 2 cups of fresh raw spinach, chopped
  • 12 oz bag of fresh mung bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (I usually put this on the side for those of us who are not afraid of a little spice but to spare those who are)
  • 1 cup hoisin sauce (see note above)
  • 8 flour tortillas (or make your own Mandarin pancakes – time consuming but better then tortillas – I have used this recipe: Cooking Light)


  1. Heat a large skillet with some olive oil on medium heat. Mix the eggs with 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon of soy sauce and a few turns of the pepper grinder. Pour into the skillet and cook like a thin omelette. Flip the egg and cook on both sides. Remove from pan and set aside. Cut into thin strips and cut those in thirds.
  2. Wipe pan and add a little more olive oil. Add garlic, ginger, sweet onion and carrots. Sprinkle with a little salt and some generous turns of the pepper mill. Cook, stirring frequently for 3 minutes.
  3. Add mushrooms to the pan and continue to cook for 5 more minutes or until mushrooms soften.
  4. Add the bean sprouts, spinach, green onions and red pepper flakes (if using).  Add a little salt and some more black pepper and cook for a few minutes, until the vegetables all begin to soften.
  5. Stir in 1/2 cup of the hoisin sauce. Remove from the heat.
  6. Warm the tortillas. Spoon some vegetable mixture into the tortilla and add a little hoisin sauce. Roll up and enjoy!

November 29, 2016

Cooked and chopped egg
grating ginger


chopping mushrooms
All the cooked vegetables and egg ready to put into the wrappers (also good without the wrapper).
Ready to eat!

Autumn Mixed Baby Lettuces and Apple Cranberry Salad

A friend invited us for dinner and asked us to bring a salad. We were in the mountains and I thought an Autumn-feeling salad would be nice, but where to find a recipe? I searched online and found quite a few butternut squash salads, but that seems very heavy to me, then I found a salad on Cooking Light that inspired me, Fall Salad with Apples, Walnuts and Stilton. In the end, I ended making up my own salad recipe with ingredients I was able to procure in the one store in the mountains, but I did use the dressing from the Cooking Light recipe, and it was quite delicious (even though the dried apricot seemed weird-I think it added something so use it)! Feel free to try the salad as written or swap out the dried cranberries for fresh pomegranate, pears for the apples or pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds) for the pine nuts. It is pretty versatile. This serves 6-8 side salads, or 4 large entree-sized salads (maybe add cubed chicken for an entree).

Autumn Mixed Baby Lettuces and Apple Cranberry Salad

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Healthy Autumn salad with crunchy apples, pine nuts and dried cranberries.

Credit: Dressing is from Cooking Light’s  Fall Salad with Apples, Walnuts, and Stilton 


  • 2 tablespoons shallot, minced
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (I used a whole small lemon)
  • 1-2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 dried apricots, finely chopped
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 10 ounce package mixed baby lettuces
  • 1 large crunchy sweet red apple such as Fuji, Pink Lady or Honey Crisp, skin on, sliced thinly and then cut in thirds.
  • 1 pint of mixed cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 2 ounces goat cheese (I used a goat cheese with figs)
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • 1 cup juice-sweetened dried cranberries


  1. In a small bowl mix the first 6 ingredients (shallot – apricots) in a blender or food processor until smooth. Gradually pour in the olive oil with the blender running on low until all of it is mixed in. Add black pepper to taste and stir to blend. Set aside.
  2. Slice the apple. After slicing, immerse the apple pieces in a bath of cold water and a few tablespoons of lemon juice. Let sit while assembling the rest of the salad.
  3. Toast the pine nuts in the oven at a low heat (around 300 degrees F) for a few minutes. Remove from oven and cool.
  4. On a very large platter (or bowl) lay out the lettuce. Layer on the apples and tomato halves, and then toss with half the dressing. Add little spoonfuls of the goat cheese (I left this on the side so the dairy-free people can leave this out), cranberries and finishing with the toasted pine nuts. Serve the remaining dressing on the side for anyone who wants more. Enjoy!

This is the salad without the cheese, pine nuts and dressing. 

Dungeness Crab Cioppino

It is Dungeness Crab season in Northern California and I decided I needed find a recipe that uses crab because they looked so delicious in the store. I found this Food and Wine recipe for Dungeness Crab Cioppino and decided to make this for a dinner party we were having that evening.  Although it is risky to try a new recipe for guests, I figured they are good friends and will forgive me if it bombs. The good news is that the cioppino turned out delicious and had lots of tender tasty morsels of crab. Yum! I simplified the recipe some and tailored it to my family’s tastes, but you can also check out the original recipe in the link below. 



Dungeness Crab Cioppino

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: medium
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Savory cioppino that features fresh Dungeness crab.

Credit: Based on  Judith’s Dungeness Crab Cioppino, Food and Wine 


  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 large garlic cloves, 6 finely chopped and 2 whole
  • 3 jalapeños, seeded and minced
  • 3 bell peppers, finely chopped (I used one red, orange and green)
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • one 28-ounce can peeled and diced tomatoes
  • four 8-ounce bottles of clam broth
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • freshly ground pepper and salt
  • 1/2 cup packed basil leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 steamed Dungeness crabs (mine came steamed and cracked/cleaned from Whole Foods)
  • 1 pound of halibut, cut into bite-size cubes
  • 1 pound large scallops, halved if larger than bite size
  • Crusty garlic bread for serving


  1. Heat olive oil in a very large soup pot or cast iron dutch oven. Add the chopped garlic, jalapeños, bell peppers, onion and bay leaf and cook, stirring occasionally, over moderately high heat until softened and beginning to brown, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the tomato paste to the pot and cook, stirring for one minute.
  3. Add the wine and cook until nearly evaporated, about one minute longer.
  4. Add the chopped tomatoes and their juices and cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
  5. Add the clam broth and water, season lightly with salt and generously with pepper and bring to a boil. Simmer over medium-low heat until the broth is reduced a bit, about 20 minutes.
  6. While broth is simmering, combine the basil leaves with the whole garlic and process  in a small food processor (or blender) until the garlic is finely chopped. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of olive oil and the crushed red pepper and process the basil puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Clean the crabs if your fish monger has not done this for you and discard the inedible parts. The original recipe details how to clean the crab if you need to do this. I used the crab legs, claws and some of the body meat.
  8. Add the crab to the pot. Cover and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add the fish and scallops for 5 minutes or so, until they are cooked through.
  9. Ladle the cioppino into deep bowls and drizzle each serving with some of the basil puree. Serve with the garlic bread. We served this with a Barolo and it was delicious!

November 23, 2016

Pesto sauce
finished cioppino

Bulgogi – Korean BBQ Beef

Yesterday I spent so much time pouring through my recipe files and looking online for a beef and vegetable dish, and I just couldn’t find anything that sounded good, so I made a very simple sea bass and roasted vegetable dinner. Today without much effort I searched WordPress for a beef dish and I found Bulgogi on Always Fire and Honey blog.  That blog referred the reader to Lazy Mom Cooking blog, where the recipe originated. I have never cooked a Korean dish before so I had no idea what to do with the somewhat vague instructions, so I searched further and decided that My Korean Kitchen  had an easier to understand version of a Bulgogi recipe. In the end I think I made a combination of the Lazy Mom Cooking and the My Korean Kitchen recipes adding some additional vegetables because we like vegetables in my household (ok, the carnivores here tolerate the vegetables as long as I provide some meat for them). I served the Bulgogi with simple sushi rice cooked in the rice cooker. My family and I really liked this and I will definitely make this again!

Bulgogi- Korean BBQ Beef

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy-medium
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Korean BBQ Beef recipe with added vegetables.


  • About 1  1/2 pounds of organic grass-fed beef (I used half flat-iron steak and half beef tenderloin- just because I could’t get enough of the flat iron steak and the tenderloin was very expensive for what I was making. Traditionally Beef Rib Eye is used, but I find that too fatty).
  • 1 carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 sweet onion, sliced thin
  • 3 green onions, sliced into small pieces
  • 2-3 bunches of baby bok choy, sliced into quarters
  • 6 large crimini mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • 6 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons of low sodium beef broth or stock
  • 3 tablespoons of honey
  • 2 tablespoons Mirin (sweet rice cooking wine)
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons of dark sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons of roasted sesame seeds (I forgot this)


  1. Mix the soy sauce, beef stock, honey, mirin, garlic, and sesame oil together in a large bowl.
  2. Thinly slice the beef. You can freeze it for an hour or so to make it easier to slice thinly. Add the sliced beef, onions and green onions to the marinade. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour, a few hours may be better. NOTE: Some recipes say it is traditional to add chopped fruit to the marinade to help tenderize the meat. I skipped this and used more tender meat.
  3. When ready to cook, heat up a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add a little oil of choice and when hot add the meat mixture and the marinade. Stir-fry for a few minutes until meat is cooked. Pull out cooked meat and place in a serving bowl. When there is room, add mushrooms and carrots to the skillet and cook for a few minutes in the marinade. Add the Bok Choy when the other vegetables are nearly cooked. Stir-fry for a minute of two until it wilts a bit. Remove all vegetables from the pan and continue to boil the marinade for a few more minutes so it reduces some. Pour remaining marinade into a ramekin to serve on the side.
  4. NOTE: Another way to do this is make the beef slices a bit larger and thicker and grill them and grill the vegetables. If you do this keep the marinade and boil it for 10 minutes or so and serve as a sauce.
  5. I have read that the traditional way to eat this is to take a small piece of lettuce and put a small amount of rice and a small amount of the beef mixture on it and eat it in one bite. Instead I made plain sushi rice in my rice maker and served the meat and vegetables over the rice with some extra sauce on the side. Both the hubby and 12 year old gave this a big thumbs up!

November 17, 2016

Prepping the vegetables and the meat and onions are marinating.
Ramekin of sauce
The finished Bulgogi in the serving bowl

Pan Seared Chilean Sea Bass with Caramelized Lemon Sauce

I got this recipe from Whole Foods Market and it was very tasty as well as quick and easy. I served it with wild rice and some simple roasted mixed mushrooms and broccoli. I roasted the mushrooms and broccoli with a sprinkling of olive oil, kosher salt, fresh ground pepper, fresh thyme and fresh oregano (the same herbs in the fish recipe). Delicious and healthy!

Chilean Sea Bass with Caramelized Lemon Sauce

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Very flavorful and bright Sea Bass recipe that can come together quickly on a weeknight.


  • 2 lemons, halved and seeds removed
  • 4 (6-ounce) Chilean Sea Bass filets, skin removed
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, finely chopped


  1. Heat a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. When very hot add the halved lemons, cut side down.
  2. Sprinkle the fish with salt and pepper.
  3. When lemons just begin to brown, about 3 minutes, push them to one side of the skillet and add a little olive oil and the fish. Cook until the fish is browned and just opaque in the center, about 4 minutes per side. Lower the heat if the lemons or fish begin to brown too quickly. Transfer fish to a platter and lemons to a cutting board.
  4. Place the skillet over low heat and add the shallot. Cook, stirring, for one minute. Stir in wine and cook for another minute. Squeeze 2 lemon halves through a strainer into the skillet.  Remove from heat and add a tablespoon of olive oil (original recipe used butter) and the herbs, stir.
  5. Pour the sauce over the fish.
  6. I served this with whole grain wild rice made with water in the rice cooker and oven-roasted mixed mushrooms and broccoli that I simply drizzled with olive oil, a little caramelized lemon juice, thyme, oregano, salt and pepper. Delicious!

November 17, 2016


Mixed mushrooms before roasting.
Broccoli and mushrooms after roasting.
Sea Bass in the pan. Finished cooking and ready to put on platter.
Finished sea bass with the sauce. Three of us shared this with the rice and vegetables. I actually cut the sauce ingredients in half when I made it.




Chicken and Roasted Vegetable Enchilada Casserole

Today my husband is coming back from a week in Asia so I thought I would make something Mexican to welcome him back home as Mexican food is his favorite and there is not plentiful Mexican food where he was visiting. I recently made enchiladas and remembered why I rarely make them –they are a lot of trouble! So I started with an old favorite, Cooking Light’s La Bamba Casserole and while looking at it I felt it didn’t look quite as appealing as it did when it first came out in 2002. I updated it with fresh roasted peppers, onions and garlic, fresh corn, shredded rotisserie chicken breast, some enchilada sauce (store bought to save some time) and a bottom layer of corn tortillas to hopefully keep it together better- which failed, it was a little loose, BUT still very tasty!  I don’t think it resembles the inspirational recipe very much anymore, but I still think it is fair to give credit where credit is due.

Roasted Vegetable and Chicken Enchilada Casserole

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy-medium
  • Print

An abundance of roasted peppers, fresh corn onions and garlic mixed with some chicken and cheese updates the standard enchilada.


  • 1 small sweet onion cut into quarters
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and cut in half
  • 3 assorted bell peppers (I used red and orange) halved and seeded
  • 3 Anaheim chiles, halved and seeded
  • 2 ears of fresh corn, cooked and cut off the cob (I use a microwave most of the time)
  • 1 lb of cooked chicken breast meat, shredded
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons of chile powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste (I used about 10 turns of my pepper grinder and less than a 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt)
  • 1 1/2 cups of shredded mixed Mexican cheese blend
  • 6 corn tortillas
  • 1 can refried beans (or black whole beans)
  • 2 packages of red enchilada sauce (or 2 cups of homemade sauce)
  • guacamole and diced tomatoes as a topping


  1. Turn on broiler in oven.
  2. Spread the peppers, separated onion chunks, garlic, and Anaheim chiles on a baking sheet and roast until peppers begin to blacken. Remove onions and garlic if they start to blacken, you just want to cook them, not burn them. I feel like broil can burn everything really quickly so I check on the vegetables every 3-4 minutes and stir them or remove the ones cooking too quickly.
  3. When all vegetables are cooked, change the oven temperature to 375 degrees.
  4. Wrap the blackened peppers in foil or a paper bag and let cool for 15 minutes or so. When cool peel off the blackened skin on the peppers and chop the peppers into small chunks.
  5. While the peppers cool chop the roasted onions and garlic into a medium chop.
  6. Chop the tomatoes. Save half for the guacamole (if making) and garnishing.
  7. In a large bowl combine the peppers, chiles, onions, garlic, tomato, corn, chicken, 1 cup of the cheese, spices and salt and pepper. Mix well.
  8. Lightly coat a 9 x 12 baking dish with cooking spray (I used two separate dishes today because I made one without beans and chiles and a larger one with everything).
  9. Spread a thin layer of sauce on bottom of baking dish. Put a single layer of tortillas on bottom of dish (I cut mine in pieces so the whole bottom is covered. Spread half of vegetable and chicken mixture over the tortillas. Add enough sauce to cover the mixture. Spread beans over the vegetable mixture. Spread the rest of the vegetable mixture over the beans and top with remaining sauce and remaining 1/2 cup of cheese.
  10. Bake for 30 minutes.
  11. Remove from oven. Sprinkle with chopped tomatoes and let stand for 5 minutes to set. Cut into squares and serve with a dollop of guacamole. Enjoy!

November 14, 2016

The roasted vegetables chopped up
The roasted vegetables with the chicken, cheese and spices
Layering the casserole

Spinach and Mushroom Frittata

When my kids were younger I would make this in a mini muffin pan and call them “mini frittatas,” and they loved them and was a great way to get a lot of vegetables in them at the start of the day. Now that my kids are older and the fact that I find muffin pans really frustrating to clean, I make this in a regular skillet and everyone in my house still loves it (although it is not nearly as “cute” anymore). Today I made this my standard way with spinach, mushrooms, veggie sausage and cheddar, but sometimes I add different vegetables or different types of cheese, it just depends on what is in the fridge at the time. I really like it with broccoli, but it seems my family is used to it this way and that is what they prefer. Leftovers also heat up well the next day. The ingredient amounts are approximate as I don’t measure. If you want to serve more people just add two more eggs/person and a little more of each ingredient per person.  Enjoy!


Spinach and Mushroom Frittata

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Large oven baked omelette chock full of vegetables and a great healthy way to start a weekend morning.


  • 1/4 cup chopped sweet onion (about a quarter of an onion)
  • 12 oz bag of fresh spinach
  • 2 large mushrooms
  • 2 pieces of breakfast sausage (today I used Morningstar Farms breakfast sausage patties, other times I use a chicken sausage or turkey sausage).
  • 1/2 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
  • 6 eggs (or 8 if you have more than 4 people or like bigger servings
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Put a medium-sized oven-proof skillet in the oven to heat up.
  2. Finely chop the onion.
  3. Chop mushrooms.
  4. Microwave the spinach for one minute. Squeeze out water and chop. (or sauté, I am just saving a few calories here).
  5. Sauté the onions and mushrooms in a little bit of olive oil. Cook the sausage (I microwaved them) and then chop.
  6. Whisk the eggs in a large bowl. Add dill, oregano and thyme. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add cheese. Add cooked vegetables and sausage. Stir well with a spoon.
  7. Remove skillet from oven and spray with cooking spray.
  8. Pour mixture into the hot and lightly greased skillet. Cook in pre-heated oven (350 degrees) for 15 or 20 min, depending on amount of eggs and oven.
  9. Enjoy! Leftovers make for a quick breakfast or lunch the next day.

November 9, 2016


Pumpkin Oat Granola Bars

I am on a slight pumpkin kick today. I started with pumpkin waffles, because we were out of my supply of homemade frozen waffles (I make a batch and freeze some for the weekdays). Then I was staring at the half-full can of pumpkin (feeling optimistic today) and decided to make pumpkin bread and then still had a little left so I make these granola bars. These are totally made-up, so I had no idea if they would turn out edible, but they are actually pretty decent. They are a soft granola bar, maybe if I cooked it longer it would be crunchier? The other thing is I might leave out the coconut and add more nuts next time? Not sure. I am hoping people give them a try and give me some feedback.


Pumpkin Oat Granola Bars

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Simple soft granola bars with Autumn spices.


  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup juice-sweetened cranberries
  • 1/4 cup ground flax seed
  • 1/4 cup toasted wheat germ
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • 2 tablespoons honey (this created just a slightly sweet product, add more honey if you like sweeter granola)
  • 2 tablespoons canned pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • dash of salt
  • cooking spray


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. In a medium bowl mix all the ingredients. Keep mixing until everything is coated and sticks together slightly.
  3. Press mixture into a lightly greased 9 x 5 inch loaf pan. Press it down so it all seems stuck together pretty well.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes, until browning slightly. Cool on a metal rack in the pan for 10 minutes, then gently remove and continue to cool on the metal rack. Cut into 6 bars (or 12 small squares) and enjoy.

November 5, 2016




Pumpkin Spice Bread

Another one of my older recipes that is still very tasty to this day! As most of my older recipes, this came originally from Cooking Light but I have modified it a bit. The original makes two loaves, presumably to use up a whole can of pumpkin, but I already used half of my can on pumpkin waffles and pumpkin granola bars, so I just made one loaf. The bread is cooking now and my whole house smells like pumpkin and warm spices. YUM!


Pumpkin Spice Bread

  • Servings: 10-12
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Really awesome bread with an abundance of warm autumn spices.

Credit: Cooking Light Spiced Pumpkin Bread


  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons ground flax seed
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt (I use non-fat, but use what you prefer)
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup plain pumpkin puree (canned is what I use)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, juice sweetened or unsweetened (watch out, these can have a lot of sugar added)
  • optional: 1/4 cup of nuts of choice (today I used pine nuts – roast for a few minutes for extra flavor)
  • cooking spray


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Combine flour and next 7 ingredients (through salt) in a medium bowl. Stir with a whisk.
  3. In a small bowl mix  with a whisk the yogurt, canola oil, egg, pumpkin and vanilla extract until smooth. Add the cranberries and nuts(if using). Stir gently.
  4. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, stirring just until moist. Will be pretty thick.
  5. Spoon the batter into a lightly greased 9×5 inch loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted into center comes out clean.
  6. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove from the pan and cool completely on a wire rack. Slice and Enjoy!
  7. I usually freeze several slices individually to put in a lunch box or enjoy at a later date.

November 5, 2016

The batter, ready to cook.