Pistachio Cinnamon Rolls

Pistachio Chewy Bite Cinnamon Rolls 2 copy
Are you searching for an easy, delicious  recipe to make in celebration of Mother’s Day coming Sunday, May 10th? Delight the special moms in your life with these scrumptious vegan Pistachio Cinnamon Rolls. Take a short cut and use Pistachio Chewy Bites to speed up this recipe. Thanks to Jenny Engel and Heather Goldberg of Spork Foods, for sharing this recipe with my readers. These are perfect for a mother’s day brunch menu.

Gluten-Free Fresh Cherry and Almond Muffins & Gluten-Free Muffin Cookbook Giveaway

Gluten-Free muffins? Yes! It’s hard to believe that making muffins gluten-free can taste fabulous, and Cookbook Author, Camilla Saulsbury, shows us how in one of her latest cookbooks “150 Best Gluten-Free Muffin Recipes”. This book is a collection of great recipes, expert baking tips, expert baking techniques and even a gluten-free ingredient glossary to help the novice as well as the expert gluten-free baker. Recipes such as Rocky Road Muffins, Bacon Scallion Muffins, Indian Spice Coconut Muffins and Sour Cream Muffins are just a few calling my name. These Fresh Cherry Almond Muffins (pictured above) were out of this world. Before I could turn around, my 3 kids devoured them. These are perfect for this time of year when fresh cherries are at their peak. For a chance to win a copy of this book, leave me a comment telling me what type of muffin is your favorite. For additional chances to win, follow the steps below and leave me a comment telling me you did so. Good Luck! Winner will be drawn June 12th at 8 a.m CST. 

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Tweet the following link “I just entered 150 Best Gluten-Free Muffin Recipes book giveaway by @alisonlewis”

Blueberry Pancakes for Mother’s Day

What a week… I can’t believe that a week ago I buried my mom, and tomorrow it’s Mother’s day. It’s been such a rough week, but I have so many of you to thank for the sweet messages, notes, emails, calls, flowers, comments, lunches, etc. I am trying to pick myself up every day and move forward, and this blog is one great way to push me to do that. I thought I would share a super simple recipe for Blueberry Pancakes for Mother’s Day or any day since my mom always loved Mother’s Day brunches and who doesn’t love pancakes and blueberries?

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the beautiful, wonderful, giving moms out there. For those of you who still have a mom, give her a big hug today! All the best, Alison

Recipe adapted from Allrecipes.com

Buttermilk Pancakes & Guest Post by “Today’s Nest”

I am so excited to announce that my post today is by Sam Henderson of Today’s Nest, one of my favorite sites. Please be sure to check out his site and his incredible talent! I am honored to have him share his incredible work with you for National Hot Breakfast Month. Take it away, Sam….

Pancakes are an American staple and go by many names–flapjacks, hot sales, griddle cakes, etc. The breakfast standard has a long history and is even surrounded by a bit of folklore. Perhaps you have read the story of Paul Bunyan and his love for flapjacks. Some say it took nearly 20 men to make enough pancakes to satisfy him.  I sometimes feel as though I could use a little help getting enough for my crew. They seem to disappear from the plate faster than I can flip them. We used a box mix for a long time until we discovered we could make better cakes on our own.

There is no magic in box pancake mix.  The ingredients  are, for the most part, already in your pantry. The only exception here is that many pancake mixes require just water to be ready to go. If you desire the taste of true buttermilk pancakes, you will be required to keep some buttermilk on hand.  The good news is you can make some Homemade Butter or purchase some and keep it for other purposes.

Sam’s 10 Pancake Tips:

1. A word about syrup… I believe in saving money where it is sensible and doesn’t compromise good taste (in every sense of the word). REAL Maple syrup is not a meaningless purchase. Buy REAL Maple Syrup.

2. As a nice gift, double the dry ingredients and place them in an airtight jar.  Tie a card around the top with the recipe written inside.

3. When you pour in the wet ingredients, mix quickly and just until moistened.  That’s all.  There may be some lumps, but it won’t be evident when your light and fluffy pancakes are served.

4. If you have the time, allow the batter to rest before using.  Even after an hour the results are better.

5. Pancakes should be flipped only once.  Pull up the side to see if the bottom is the color you want and then flip it gently.  The second side should only take half to three quarters the time it took for the first side.

6. If you are using a non-stick pan or griddle you should not need any additional butter or oil.

7. I find a griddle much easier to manage for pancake making.  I don’t have to struggle with the side of the pan and I can cook many more at a time.

8. I use an ice cream scoop to measure out my pancakes.  Ours holds exactly 1/4 cup of batter, and I am able to maintain consistent results.

9. Freezing pancakes is simple.  Place cooled cakes on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Top with another sheet of parchment and another layer of pancakes.  Continue until all are single layered between parchment sheets.  Place in freezer until frozen.  Remove frozen pancakes from parchment and store in a sealable freezer bag.

10. Reheat frozen pancakes covered with a damp paper towel in a microwave for 1-2 minutes.

Leap Year Discoveries and $75 Visa Giftcard Giveaway

It’s so cool that this year is a Leap Year. It’s like we have an extra day on the calendar (I know I could use one :)). I am so excited to partner with Quaker on their “Leap Day Delightful Discovery Campaign” and to be able to introduce their new flavor variety of Quaker Oatmeal Squares, Honey Nut Quaker Oatmeal Squares. In honor of Leap Year and this fun campaign, I have an awesome giveaway. One winner will win a $75 Visa gift card to put towards something new for you in celebration of an extra day this year as well as the full product line of Quaker Oatmeal Squares. To enter, do as many of the following and leave a comment letting me know you did. Winner will be drawn on Sunday, February 19th at 2 p.m CST.

1. Leave me a comment telling me what you would like to discover with an extra day on the calendar year.  Is it a hobby? recipe? more quality time with friends or “me time”?

2. Join the Quaker Oatmeal Squares Facebook page. Those who join the page will also receive a free sample of the new Honey Nut Variety of Oatmeal Squares to try for themselves.

3. Join Ingredients, Inc. Facebook page

4. Follow Alison Lewis on Twitter 

5. Follow Quaker on twitter

6. Follow Alison Lewis on Pinterest

7. Subscribe to Ingredients Inc by email

This post is sponsored by Quaker, but all opinions of this post are my own.

Healthy Food Gift Idea: All Natural Granola Bars

I’m always looking for new granola bars recipes to try since it’s one of mine and my 3 kid’s favorite snacks. I saw a version of this bar recipe on The Whole Kitchen by my friend Jenn which was adapted from a talented Cookbook Author (who I also know) Camilla’s Enlightened Cooking. These Homemade, All-Natural Granola Bars were a huge hit with the kids. I was so excited to share this recipe for a healthy homemade holiday food gift option. These make a great breakfast, afternoon snack or pre-workout offering. I even break them up and stir them into nonfat Greek Yogurt for a wonderful high protein breakfast. You can see me making these on Monday on NBC 13 “Daytime Alabama” at 11:30 CST on my food television segment on featuring healthy homemade food gift ideas.

Thanksgiving & Christmas Breakfast Recipes: My Favorite Coffee Cakes

One of my favorite things for breakfast is a truly awesome coffee cake. I crave it this time of the year, especially as the weather cools. My recipe for Apricot Almond Coffee Cake (above) was on my blog last year, and it’s so delicate and flavorful (I love the added touch of using Greek Yogurt). I have been eyeing some other recipes to try this season to serve on Thanksgiving and Christmas morning. I hope you’ll enjoy some of these recipes from some of my favorite sites that I look forward to reading on a daily basis.

Pumpkin Coffee Cake from How Sweet It is

Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake from Two Peas & Their Pod

 Corner Bakery Cinnamon Creme Coffee Cake from Barbara Bakes

Blueberry Lemon Coffee Cake from Cooking Light

Cinna-Bun Coffee Cake in a Jar from Picky Palate

 

Breakfast Almond and Raspberry Quinoa

I’m a huge fan of quinoa, and one of my favorite ways to enjoy it, is for breakfast. Quinoa (pronounced Keen-wah) is one of the “it” or “super” grains right now, and it’s one of the best plant sources of protein with more high quality protein than any other grain. It’s loaded with protein, fiber and, best of all, is gluten-free. It is light, tasty and easy to digest, with a slightly nutty flavor. This recipe for Breakfast Almond and Raspberry Quinoa is fabulous. I had all 3 of my kids try it too, and they loved it. I love the combination of using almond milk, almonds and raspberries, but feel free to use any of your favorite fruits and toppings. Enjoy!

Healthy Mini Pumpkin Flaxseed Bread Recipe

I love one bowl, no mixer, quick bread recipes such as this one for Mini Flaxseed Pumpkin Bread Loaves. Not only is this so easy to prepare, but my kids can almost basically make them on their own with very little clean-up. I added a touch of nonfat Greek yogurt and ground Flaxseed to make these even healthier, moister and with added crunch, and my 3 children had no idea those ingredients were even in there. These Mini Pumpkin loaves make a great breakfast, afternoon snack or dessert that you can feel good about eating and serving to your kids. These also make wonderful Christmas food gifts as well :).

Fresh Peach-Pecan Muffins

I have been on a huge peach kick lately with the juiciest, ripest peaches to choose from in Alabama. I made these Peach-Pecan Muffins this weekend for my kids, and they were quite popular. This recipe can be made with whole wheat or all-purpose flour, and I used medium fresh peaches. Our medium peaches are huge, so you may want to add more if yours aren’t that large (see my picture below from instagram on the iphone). Also, feel free to omit the pecans if you wish, but they do make them pretty and add an additional touch of southern flavor.