Enjoy these deliciously moist Sourdough Banana Nut Muffins for a weekend brunch or to make ahead for a grab-and-go weekday breakfast. Filled with bananas, English walnuts, and topped with coconut to give the muffins a nice crunchy top.
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When I was going to college, I liked to snack on a “trail mix” that I picked up from the cafeteria. It helped energize my mind and body between classes. This Trail Mix Energy Blend is one I made later in life when our family went on camping trips, which always included lots of afternoon hiking.
You may recognize this snack as a type of “gorp” – Good ol’ raisins and peanuts. That seemed to be a term we heard a lot of when camping.
Trail mix is also perfect for long road trips with your family. It will help save you from making those “last minute” impulsive buys at the convenience station when you’ve stopped to fuel the car. Trust me, this homemade recipe is less expensive than buying snack mix on the road.
Another great tip: Pack a cooler and load it with sliced fresh fruits and vegetables, cheese sticks, and bottled water!
Kids love to help put this snack mix together. Make this a fun family project as you make plans for your vacation or road trip! I’ve always believed that planning a trip (or anything really) is one of the best parts of any project. It builds anticipation, and that’s always good.
Ingredients Needed for Trail Mix Energy Blend
- mixed nuts
- Reese’s Pieces
- dried bananas
- M&M candies
- yogurt covered raisins
- coconut slices
- dried cranberries
- dried blueberries (or other favorite fruit)
A Few Notes about Ingredients
This snack mix is very mix-and-match friendly. If you don’t care for one of the ingredients listed, simply substitute something else in it’s place or leave it out.
The large pieces of coconut is something new I found at the store. We love them!
In the past, we have also add sesame sticks to the snack mix. These added a nice contrast to the nuts and fruit, but they can be harder to find in some stores.
Regarding the candy pieces, I have used peanut butter baking chips in the past, which I actually prefer for taste. However, these are not always available and the Reese’s Pieces are an acceptable substitute.
I have also used chunks of quality dark chocolate instead of the M&M’s. Again, this is a tasty substitution, but the chunks of chocolate tended to melt easier, which made a glob of the snack mix.
A good reminder is to never leave your snack mix with chocolate in a hot car. Put it in your cooler!
Buy the Best Ingredients
Buy the best ingredients you can afford, especially when considering nuts. Some of the less expensive brands may include more peanuts than other nuts. This always bothered me. And while I cringed at the price of the “deluxe” nuts, I was always glad I spent the extra $$ for delicious nuts.
This, of course, doesn’t apply if you love lots of peanuts. However, if that’s the case, you might do better to just buy a container of quality peanuts!
Instructions for Making this Snack
Gather all your ingredients so that you have everything close at hand on the counter or table.
Start opening packages and dumping them in a large bowl. Using a long-handled spoon, mix together until everything is incorporated.
Store in an air-tight container or divide into snack bags or snack cups for individual servings.
When I began making this snack mix, I put it all together in a sealed container for everyone to enjoy. I thought it was a quick and convenient way to store it.
However, I learned very quickly, that some people in our family (I won’t name any names) would pick out their favorite pieces. All of a sudden, there were only cranberries, bananas, and cashews left in the container. Hmmm. How did that happen! I learned to make individual snack bags for everyone from then on.
This snack mix will make 15-20 servings and will last up to two months stored in a cool, dry place.
See more Snack Ideas Here.
Trail Mix Energy Blend
- 15 oz. mixed nuts
- 15 oz. Reese's Pieces
- 12 oz. dried bananas
- 10.7 oz. M&M candies
- 7 oz. yogurt covered raisins
- 6 oz. coconut slices
- 4 oz. dried cranberries
- 3.5 oz. dried blueberries or other favorite fruit
- Gather all your ingredients so that you have everything close at hand on the counter or table.
- Mix all of the above together in a large bowl.
- Store in an air-tight container or divide into snack bags or snack cups for individual servings.
- This will make 15-20 servings.
This Elderberry Wine-Poached Pear Crostata is a new recipe I tried this summer that we really loved. Honestly, I thought it was amazing. Decadent enough to include as the finale for the finest Italian meal. I mentioned earlier this week how we’ve received boxes of …
(This post was slightly modified on 10/5/21)
Here is a yummy Guacamole Dip perfect for outdoor barbecues or the next time you make Mexican food.
Up until a few years ago, I had never tasted an avocado. I always thought they were slimy and gross. Boy, was I mistaken! Avocados are wonderful!
Sure, they can be a bit slimy and bland. But try them on a salad, or with Fish Tacos. Or in this dip! My husband and I love them.
Eat Avocados for a Healthy Diet
Plus, they’re loaded with fiber and vitamins. Did you know they have more potassium than bananas? Cool, huh?
They’re also heart-healthy, and may help prevent cancer, reduce symptoms of arthritis, eye sickness, weight gain, and drum roll, please . . . they will help lower your cholesterol and increase your “good” cholesterol.
Even with all these benefits, we still haven’t convinced our daughters to try them. They still think they’re yucky.
Ingredients Needed to Make Guacamole Dip
- ripe avocados
- sweet onion
- chopped green chiles
- freshly squeezed lemon juice
- minced garlic (I use the jarred kind for this recipe)
- hot sauce (I like to use Louisiana Hot Sauce)
- kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- Roma tomato
How to Pick and Cut an Avocado
When choosing your avocados at the store, consider when you’ll be using them. You’ll want them to be ripe upon use. A ripe avocado is dark greenish black in color, and will yield to firm, gentle pressure. Too ripe and it will be soft and squishy, and brownish in color. Not ripe enough and it will be hard and firm, with little give.
Cutting an avocado is quite simple. You can watch lots of videos online for various techniques. This is how I do it:
Slice the ripe avocado lengthwise. This will give you two halves, with one holding onto the seed. Sometimes the seed pops right out. Usually it doesn’t. Slip your knife under the seed and apply a bit of pressure and it should come out.
Then using your fingers, you can easily peel the thick outer covering. If it’s hard to peel, chances are, the avocado isn’t ripe enough. Which means the flesh inside will be hard as well. This isn’t what you want when making this dip. Trust me, I learned this the hard way.
Instructions for Making This Dip
Gather your ingredients so that you have everything close at hand on the counter or table.
Prepare your Ingredients
Using a sharp knife and cutting board, dice the sweet onion.
Slice the avocado in half and remove the seed and peel. Cut into small chunks. (See my notes above on how to slice an avocado.)
Rather than use fresh garlic, I prefer to use the jarred kind for this recipe. If you want to use fresh garlic, feel free to do so.
Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE fresh garlic. And use it a lot. However, there were at least two times when I used fresh garlic (cough, cough) that was a bit too strong. To my great disappointment, it ruined the dip. So, now I live on the safe side and reach for my container of refrigerated minced garlic when I make this dip. Better to be safe than sorry.
Dice the Roma tomato.
Make the Guacamole
Using an immersion blender, place the chopped avocados, diced onion, chopped green chilies, lemon juice, minced garlic, Louisiana hot sauce, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper in a container. Blend until ingredients are mashed to desired consistency.
Fold the diced tomatoes into the avocado mixture.
I like to use Roma tomatoes for this recipe as they are meaty and have fewer seeds. If I’m using Guacamole as a topping on my Mexican food, then I’ll sometimes opt to leave the tomato out. Which is fine. I like it both ways. You be the judge.
Spoon into a pretty serving bowl. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve with corn tortilla chips or on your favorite Mexican dish. Makes 1 1/2 cups.
- Gather your ingredients so that you have everything close at hand on the counter or table.
Prepare the Ingredients
- Using a sharp knife and cutting board, dice the sweet onion.
- Slice the avocado in half and remove the seed and peel. Cut into small chunks. (See my notes above on how to slice an avocado.)
- Dice the Roma tomato.
Make the Dip
- Using an immersion blender, place the chopped avocados, diced onion, chopped green chilies, lemon juice, minced garlic, hot sauce, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper in a container. Blend until ingredients are mashed to desired consistency.
- Fold the prepared diced tomato into the avocado mixture. This step is optional. If you'd prefer the dip without tomatoes, simply omit this step.
- Spoon the dip into a pretty serving bowl. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve with corn tortilla chips or on your favorite Mexican dish. Makes 1 1/2 cups.