easy peanut butter snack dip

Sometimes you need a quick and healthy snack to help you get through that afternoon slump. Put down that cookie and try whipping up this easy peanut butter snack dip. It’s healthier, and with only 4 ingredients, can be made in a matter of minutes.

easy peanut butter snack dip

I love dipping apple slices but you could also do pretzels, graham crackers, a banana, or spread some on a bagel. If you’re really in a hurry, just scoop some out with a spoon and take it to go.

I also like having this as a snack after hitting the gym.  Both Greek yogurt and peanut butter are good foods to help you recover after a workout. I usually spread some onto a banana and am good to go. Instant energy.

easy peanut butter snack dip

A tasty, healthy snack in under 5 minutes. How could you say no?

Easy Peanut Butter Snack Dip
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Prep Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  2. 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (I use Jiff Natural. Finding a natural peanut butter that doesn't separate will get the best results.)
  3. 3 tablespoons honey
  4. sprinkle of cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Mix all of the ingredients together in a small mixing bowl until well combined.
  2. Serve with fruit or snack of choice.
  3. Keep leftovers refrigerated in an airtight container.
Quirks and Twists http://quirksandtwists.com/
   

sparkling peach and strawberry sangria

What do you get if you smush a mimosa and a glass of sangria together? You’re looking at it. We are calling it sparkling sangria and we think you guys are going to be big fans of this one. 

sparkling peach and strawberry sangria

One great thing about this cocktail is that you can totally get away with drinking it for brunch. There’s orange juice and fruit so it’s pretty much the start to a healthy breakfast…there just happens to be champagne and wine mixed in too. Hey, lets not get too caught up in the details.

Mimosas are one of our favorite drinks, so we took that idea and added white wine, peach puree, and strawberries. I did not add any extra sugars because I’m not a huge fan of super sweet drinks. If you prefer a little more sweetness add sugar or honey until you get the taste you are looking for.

sparkling peach and strawberry sangria

Mix up a pitcher or two for your next girls night in. And if you do, let us know  by snapping a picture in Instagram and tagging us!

Sparkling Peach and Strawberry Sangria
Serves 6
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Ingredients
  1. 1 bottle champagne or Prosecco
  2. 1 bottle white wine
  3. 9 strawberries, sliced
  4. 2 ripe peaches, pits removed
  5. 1 1/2 cups fresh orange juice
  6. optional: sugar or honey and berries
Instructions
  1. Slice the strawberries and 1 of the peaches and set aside.
  2. Remove the skin of the other peach and cut into chunks. Add the peach chunks into a blender along with 1/2 a cup of orange juice. Process until the peach puree is smooth. Strain any large lumps out.
  3. In a large pitcher, mix together the champagne, white wine, peach puree, and the remaining cup of orange juice.
  4. Add the sliced strawberries and peach slices. Let the sangria sit in the refrigerator to cool for at least 30 minutes.
  5. If wanting to add ice, do not add ice to the pitcher, but rather to the individual glasses.
  6. If wanting more sweetness, add sugar or honey to taste.
Quirks and Twists http://quirksandtwists.com/
   

Lentil Salad with Crumbled Goat Cheese, Olives, and Mint I think lentils get a bad rap for being pretty meh. But really when prepared correctly, they can be a delicious addition to any meal when paired with some bold flavors.

We constantly hear about the excellent benefits lentils have. Not only are they a great source of protein and fighters against stubborn belly fat, but they also give you that boost of energy, which is why this is a perfect salad for your upcoming, busy July 4th weekend. It’s inevitable that we will all be indulging in things like fried chicken, delicious dips, and of course sweets – which we should! So a salad like this is perfect to include in your picnic to balance it all out.

Lentil Salad with Crumbled Goat Cheese, Olives, and Mint

Like I said, lentils can pack a punch of flavor when prepared correctly and this salad will not disappoint. The key to making these lentils is allowing them to brine for at least one hour, just make sure you don’t over brine, or you’ll end up with mushy lentils. It’s as simple as placing water, lentils, and salt in a bowl and letting them chill out for 60 minutes. The second secret is to actually bake the lentils in a dutch oven. The result is creamy, but sturdy lentils. 

Lentil Salad with Crumbled Goat Cheese, Olives, and Mint

Goodbye meh lentils, hello flavor!

Lentil Salad with Crumbled Goat Cheese, Olives, and Mint
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup lentils, picked over and rinsed
  2. Salt and pepper
  3. 8 cups water
  4. 3 garlic cloves, lightly crushed and peeled
  5. 1 bay leaf
  6. 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  7. 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  8. 1/2 cup coarsely chopped pitted kalamata olives
  9. 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
  10. 1/4 Cup of crumbled goat cheese
Instructions
  1. Start by bringing your lentils in a large pot for one hour. Combine the lentils, salt, and 4 cups of water.
  2. Place the drained lentils in a dutch oven. Pour four cups of water over top, along with, garlic, salt, and, bay leaf.
  3. Bake at 325 for 40-60 minutes (it only took me 40).
  4. While they're cooking combine your vinegar and olive oil, for the dressing.
  5. Once cooked, drain the lentils and discard the garlic and bay leaf.
  6. Combine the lentils, olives, mint, and goat cheese in a large bowl.
  7. Pour the dressing over the hot lentils. Enjoy at either room temperature, hot, or refrigerated.
Adapted from America's Test Kitches
Quirks and Twists http://quirksandtwists.com/
   

summer peach cupcakes with blueberry frosting

Mariah and I kinda consider ourselves cupcake experts. And yes, thats totally a real thing.

We’ve been able to try cupcakes from some of the most “famous” cupcake stops in the country; Sprinkles and Mollys in Chicago, Mongolian Bakery in New York,  Georgetown Cupcakes in D.C and they were all amazing. I’ll take a red velvet from Sprinkles any day, anytime.

summer peach cupcakes with blueberry frosting

May I be bold for a moment? These summer peach cupcakes are just as good as any cupcake I’ve had in any shop. 

summer peach cupcakes with blueberry frosting

summer peach cupcakes with blueberry frosting

These are the perfect cupcakes to bake for a cookout because with fresh peaches in the cake topped with fresh blueberry buttermilk frosting, there are lots of summertime flavors happening.

When I first found this recipe, I was worried that the diced peaches would sink to the bottom of the cake. But they didn’t and I have a little tip to keep it from happening. Make sure your peaches are ripe. Almost overly ripe. When you dice the ripe peaches you will end up with some diced chunks and some that are almost a pureed consistency. Thats a good thing.

summer peach cupcakes with blueberry frosting

Another thing that I love about these cupcakes is the beautiful blueberry buttercream (say that 3 times fast) frosting. This is a classic buttercream frosting that you will end up using over and over. That’s a promise.

Oh, and if you’re wondering where I got that amazing jade cake stand, I found mine at Cosecha, my new favorite shop in Grandview. They have everything you could ever imagine for your dream kitchen and sell some things online, so if you don’t live in the Columbus area you can still shop. 

summer peach cupcakes with blueberry frosting

Step away from the box mix and try these cupcakes. Once you do, you’ll never go back.

Summer Peach Cupcakes
Yields 24
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Ingredients
  1. 3 cups cake flour
  2. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  3. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  4. 1 teaspoon salt
  5. Pinch of nutmeg
  6. 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  7. 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  8. 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  9. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  10. 1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) buttermilk
  11. 3 large, very ripe peaches, peeled, cored, and diced. You want some small chunks with a slight pureed consistency
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 28 muffin cups with paper liners.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg and set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar together, beating until fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl between each addition.
  5. Gently add the vanilla and buttermilk.
  6. Stir in the dry ingredients until combined. Fold in the peach chunks with a spatula.
  7. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared cupcake liners.
  8. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center of cupcakes comes out clean.
  9. Cool the cupcakes for five minutes in the tin, then turn them out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
Quirks and Twists http://quirksandtwists.com/
Blueberry Buttermilk Frosting
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup fresh blueberries
  2. ½ cup water
  3. 1 cup butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
  4. 4 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
  5. ½ teaspoon vanilla
Instructions
  1. Put blueberries and water in a small saucepan and cook on medium for about 10 minutes (stirring) or until blueberries are super plump and starting to break down.
  2. Push the cooked blueberries through a fine mesh sieve with the juices going into a bowl. Discard the skins that stay in the sieve. Set aside until cool, or place in refrigerator to speed up the process.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the butter until fluffy and white. Make sure to scrape the sides occasionally.
  4. Add the confectioners sugar to the whipped butter a cup at a time mixing on high between additions.
  5. Add vanilla and blueberry concentrate to mixer and mix until combined.
  6. Whip frosting 1-2 minutes or until fluffy, but be careful not to over whip.
  7. Spread frosting onto cooled cupcakes.
Notes
  1. Makes enough for 24 cupcakes or one 8 inch 2 layered cake.
Quirks and Twists http://quirksandtwists.com/

   

goat cheese bacon date empanadas

When I lived in Chicago there was an empanada restaurant down the street from me that baked the tastiest empanadas. Through the years, I tried everything on their menu, but my favorite was their goat cheese bacon date empanada. It was so stinkin good. 

One sad thing about moving is that you leave behind a lot of the food that you loved in your old city. I have found lots of good restaurants in Columbus, but not an empanada stop, and certainly not one with goat cheese, bacon, and dates.

goat cheese bacon date empanadas

This was my first attempt at trying to recreate them and I think I came pretty close. The filling is simple to make. Finding a good quality, whipped goat cheese is key.

I paired mine with a simple chimichurri  and hot sauce. If you are looking for a good chimichurri, I recommend this one. I also opted to bake mine because frying is a pain in the butt to save a few calories.

Make sure you remember to egg wash the top. I forgot this step (oops) on the first batch so they didn’t get as golden brown as I would have liked. But they still tasted dynamite and that is what really matters right?

goat cheese bacon date empanadas

Goat Cheese Bacon Date Empanadas
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
20 min
Ingredients
  1. 8 ounces whipped goat cheese
  2. 1/2 cup dates, pitted and finely chopped
  3. 10 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
  4. 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  5. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  6. 2 teaspoons salt
  7. 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold butter, cut into small pieces
  8. 1 to 2 cup cold water
  9. 1 large egg, lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon water (do not beat until ready to bake)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. To make the filling mix the goat cheese, dates, and bacon together in a bowl. Set aside.
  3. To make the dough, combine flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium sized mixing bowl.
  4. Using your fingers, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly.
  5. Add the cold water, a splash at a time, until the dough comes together. You do not want it wet and sticky.
  6. Roll out the dough until it is very thin, you don't want it thicker than 1/4 inch. Use a round mold, cookie cutter, or anything that can be used to cut out a round shape that is about 6 inches in diameter.
  7. Using a spoon, put a scoop of the mixture onto the disc of dough. Fold the dough over the so that it forms a pocket, or half circle shape.
  8. Crimp the edges with a fork so that the dough seals in the mixture.
  9. Brush the egg wash mixture onto the top of each empanada and use a fork to poke a hole into the top.
  10. Place on a non stick baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown.
  11. Serve hot.
Adapted from Marth Stewart
Adapted from Marth Stewart
Quirks and Twists http://quirksandtwists.com/
  • You had me at goat cheese, but got me drooling when you added bacon to it. As soon as I am allowed to eat carbs again, these are getting in my belly.ReplyCancel