Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz® Cookies are an annual Christmas family tradition for us, with the “recipe” handed down from my Aunt to my Mom, and then to me. These delectable treats are incredibly FAST and EASY to make, which is perfect for this busy time of year!Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Crunchy, creamy, peanut butter filled chocolate covered buttery cracker cookies are quick and easy holiday treats to make, using only a few ingredients!

Many years ago (at least 15), my Mom shared these cookies with me and told me that her sister, my Aunt Theda in Texas made them for her, and Mom raved about how good they were! I tried a couple, and sure enough, they tasted fantastic. When I asked my Mom how to make them she told me how incredibly easy it was.  I really loved my sweet Aunt… she passed away quite a few years ago, but I think of her whenever I make these goodies.

I’ve made these cookies so many times since then, but finally took pictures and decided to share the “recipe” on this blog.  I added a white glaze drizzled over the top, and some red and white sprinkles for the Christmas season, but really all you need to make these is 4 ingredients!  Here’s how to make a quick dozen of these yummy stacked goodies…

Place 12 Ritz® crackers onto a piece of parchment paper.  Spread a teaspoon of creamy peanut butter onto each one. When done, top with another cracker.

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Melt 1½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips with 1 HEAPING Tablespoon vegetable shortening in the microwave. Heat on High for 30 seconds. Remove bowl and stir chocolate. Place bowl back in microwave oven and heat an additional 30 seconds on High. Remove bowl and stir mixture until smooth.

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Dip cookies, one at a time into melted chocolate mixture. I use a fork to hold the cookie, and sometimes use a spoon to help coat entire cookie with chocolate. Let excess chocolate drip back into bowl, then set cookie back onto parchment paper. Do not move cookie once you set it down.  Repeat process with all cookies. Once chocolate has firmed up, they are ready to eat, unless you want to decorate them.

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

If you want to decorate the cookies, let the cookies sit, undisturbed, until chocolate has firmed up completely.  Place powdered sugar in a small bowl.  Add only a couple drops of water at a time to the sugar, stirring well, until the glaze has reached a drizzling consistency.  Too thin? Add additional powder sugar. Too thick?  Add a drop or two of water.  Use a fork to drizzle the icing over each cookie.  Garnish with colored sprinkles, if desired, while glaze is still wet.

NOTE: You do not have to drizzle powdered sugar glaze on them. You can shorten the process even further by garnishing the fresh dipped chocolate cookies with candy colored sprinkles and leave off the white icing altogether if you want!

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Let the icing completely firm up at room temperature.  Once chocolate and icing are totally firm, cookies can be transferred to serving plate for serving!

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Cookies can be decorated any way you wish. When I make these and it’s NOT Christmas time, I simply leave them plain, with only the chocolate covering them, and no powdered sugar drizzle. They taste good no matter how you fancy them up or not!

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The flavor is wonderful in these treats, with the creamy peanut butter AND the chocolate coating going so well together.  They remain crunchy from the cracker “shell”, and are so good it will be hard to stay out of them so there’s at least ONE left for good ol’ Santa Claus!

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I love to make these family favorites at Christmas time. They are made quickly without a lot of ingredients (a big plus), look good and taste even better! I hope you will consider making them a part of your holiday traditions, too!

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: My Mom and Aunt Theda

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Christmas cookies made EASY using store-bought crackers, peanut butter and coated with a simple chocolate topping!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 1 dozen
Ingredients
For Cookies:
  • 24 buttery crackers (I used Ritz® crackers)
  • 12 teaspoons creamy peanut butter
For Chocolate Coating:
  • 1½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 HEAPING Tablespoon vegetable shortening
For White Drizzle:
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • Water ( a couple drops at a time)
Directions
  1. Place 12 crackers onto a piece of parchment paper. Carefully spread a teaspoon of creamy peanut butter onto each one . When done, top with another cracker.
  2. Melt semi-sweet chocolate chips and vegetable shortening in the microwave. Heat on High for 30 seconds. Remove bowl and stir chocolate. Place bowl back in microwave oven and heat an additional 30 seconds on High. Remove bowl and stir mixture until smooth.
  3. Dip cookies, one at a time into melted chocolate mixture. Use a fork to hold the cookie, and a spoon to help coat entire cookie with chocolate. Let excess chocolate drip back into bowl, then set cookie onto parchment paper. Do not move cookie once you set it down. Repeat process with all cookies. Let the cookies sit, undisturbed, until chocolate has firmed up completely.
  4. Place powdered sugar in a small bowl. Add only a couple drops of water at a time to the sugar, stirring well, until the glaze has reached a drizzling consistency. Use a fork to drizzle the icing over each cookie. Garnish with colored sprinkles, if desired, while glaze is still wet.
  5. Let the icing completely firm up at room temperature. Once chocolate and icing are firm, cookies can be transferred to serving plate. Enjoy!

Here’s one more to pin to your Pinterest boards!Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Crunchy, creamy, peanut butter filled chocolate covered buttery cracker cookies are quick and easy holiday treats to make, using only a few ingredients!

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich

Need a quick, yet filling breakfast? What if I told you that you can make a hearty Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich in 2 minutes? Yep… it’s delicious, and can be ready faster than stopping for take-out at a fast-food restaurant!Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Need a QUICK breakfast? Try this hearty 2 minute breakfast sandwich that's made in a microwave, with egg, ham and cheese on a toasted english muffin!

Our kitchen is currently undergoing a complete remodel from floor to ceiling. At the time of this writing, there is nothing but bare walls in it (see below on left).  My husband and I have set up an itsy bitsy tiny temporary kitchen on a table in our dining room with a few essential appliances, so we can survive the 2 month remodeling process (see below on right).

One of the most used appliances (well, besides the COFFEE MAKER), is our old microwave, which has been a real life-saver.  I recently began making eggs in the microwave (who knew?), and have made these 2 minute breakfast sandwiches with an egg, sharp cheddar cheese, and thinly sliced ham stacked on a toasted english muffin several times already.

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

We LOVE these sandwiches for breakfast! We are making them (using the microwave) out of necessity, but love how convenient it’s been to make a hearty “breakfast on the go” for us in just a couple minutes.   Here’s how easy they are to make using a microwave, and a few simple ingredients.

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Spray a microwave-safe ramekin or mug with non-stick spray. Add one egg, a teaspoon of water, and salt and pepper.

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Give it a good stir till ingredients are mixed thoroughly.

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Next place the english muffin halves in toaster and lightly toast. Now multi-task!!!! While the muffin is in the toaster, cook the egg. Place ramekin with egg mixture into microwave. Cook (uncovered) for 40-60 seconds on high (mine cooked fully in 40!).  Here’s what the egg looked like when I took it out after 40 seconds. Perfectly cooked! By the way, did you notice the plastic utensils we are using during the kitchen remodel? (ha ha). I used the lovely and quite glamorous plastic fork to remove the egg from the ramekin.

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

As soon as the english muffin was toasted, I lightly buttered it, added the ham immediately, placed the cooked egg on top of the ham, then added sharp cheddar cheese and put the lid on top. If you’re more of a “I like my cheese UNDER the egg” kind of person, then by all means, make it work for YOU!

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

That’s it! In under 2 minutes, you’ve got yourself an amazingly tasty breakfast!  The warmth from the top half of the english muffin lightly melted the cheese. I made these on another day when our grown son was here at breakfast time, and he thought they tasted wonderful, as well!

We served them on (you guessed it) PAPER PLATES, and voila! A great tasting breakfast was made “lickety split” for us kitchen “orphans”.

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

These would be fantastic item for a quick breakfast to eat on the go (I know many of you eat in your car on the way to work- wink, wink!). Why stop for take-out, when it would take less time to make this breakfast before ever leaving the house? It would also be a quick way to feed the kids before school… and this sandwich really tastes good! Hope you’ll give it a try!

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Need a QUICK breakfast on the go? Try this 2 minute breakfast sandwich that's made in a microwave, with egg, ham and cheese on a toasted english muffin
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 1 sandwich
Ingredients
  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • salt/pepper (to season egg)
  • 1 english muffin, split and toasted
  • butter (optional, for muffin)
  • 2-3 thin slices deli ham
  • Small handful grated sharp cheddar cheese (or thin slice)
Directions
  1. Lightly coat a small ramekin with non-stick cooking spray. Place egg, water, salt and pepper in ramekin. Stir to blend ingredients. Set aside.
  2. Lightly toast english muffin. When done, butter one half (optional).
  3. While muffin is toasting, place ramekin with egg in microwave. Cook on high power for 40-60 seconds (mine only took 40 seconds to fully cook). Remove dish from microwave.
  4. Place warm ham slices on one half of toasted english muffin. Top with cooked egg, then grated cheddar. Immediately place the top half of the english muffin on the cheese. Serve and enjoy while it's hot!

 

Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Need a QUICK breakfast? Try this hearty 2 minute breakfast sandwich that's made in a microwave, with egg, ham and cheese on a toasted english muffin!

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies

If you’re looking for a quick and easy last minute Christmas treat (a shortcut) to take to a holiday party or give to friends, how about Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies? They LOOK great, taste wonderful, and only take about 10 minutes to make!Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Buttery, chocolate-dipped shortbread Christmas treats are a cinch to make in 10 minutes, using store-bought cookies. A real-time-saver for the holidays!

These festive looking goodies are so easy because… wait for it… YOU USE STORE-BOUGHT SHORTBREAD COOKIES! That’s a major time-saver right there, folks! I don’t know about you, but the Christmas season seems to get quite busy, whether I want it to or not.  Why not take some of the holiday “stress” out of the day, and make these delicious decorated cookies in no time at all?

All you will need are some store-bought shortbread cookies (any shape or size), some milk chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate chips, a bit of vegetable shortening, and Christmas sprinkles to fancy the treats up a bit! I used an assortment of Walker’s Shortbread that my hubby bought in a huge tin at Costco (but Lorna Doone’s are wonderful, as well)! Easy Peasy!

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The good part about using store-bought shortbread is that you can “make” as many cookies you want! Here’s how:

Spread a sheet of parchment paper on work surface. Melt chocolate chips and shortening in heat-proof bowl in microwave. 30 Seconds on High. Remove. Stir. 30 seconds on High. Remove. Stir. The chocolate should have melted.  If not, place back in for 15 seconds, being careful not to burn it.  Dip one end of the cookie into the melted chocolate mixture, making sure to cover all sides. (I use a spoon to help coat it with chocolate).

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

As soon as the shortbread is covered to your liking, place it onto parchment paper. Once you set it down, don’t move it or the chocolate will smear.  Immediately garnish with colored sprinkles (sprinkle them on using your fingers) while chocolate is still wet. Do NOT dip the wet cookie into the sprinkles or it will be a BIG mess.

Repeat process until all cookies are decorated.  Let the cookies rest on the parchment paper without moving them until the chocolate has hardened.

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Once chocolate is firm, transfer cookies to a serving plate.  See how cute they are?  I used an assortment of triangular, rectangular and circular shaped cookies!

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The cookies would be a perfect hostess gift for a special friend, or served on a pretty Christmas platter at a dessert buffet or Christmas party!  They look fancy, but no one needs to know how easy they were to make!  I mean, really… who wouldn’t like a sweet, buttery shortbread cookie dipped in chocolate, topped with “Christmasy” looking sprinkles?

Speaking of Christmas goodies, be sure and check out my recipes for Microwave Rocky Road Fudge (another time-saver!), Pecan Pie Truffles, Cranberry Orange Pinwheel Cookies, Holiday Spritz Cookies or Chocolate Peanut Butter Muddy Buddies! You might even like my post featuring a Holiday Goodies Collection!

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Our home is in the middle of a total kitchen remodel this Christmas season, so we have nothing in the kitchen at the moment except walls, floor and ceiling.  I made the cookies pictured above in October before construction began and froze them, so I would still be able to give my neighbors plates of yummy goodies at Christmas, as is my tradition!

I may not have a kitchen, but I can still give gifts of food! (I might have even saved a few for my husband and I as well!). Yum!  Hope you’ll enjoy making and eating these Christmas cookies!

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies
 
Prep time
Total time
 
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 2 dozen
Ingredients
  • 2 dozen store-bought shortbread cookies (any shape or size)
  • 2 cups milk chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 HEAPING Tablespoon vegetable shortening
  • Christmas colored sprinkles
Directions
  1. Cover work surface with a sheet of parchment paper.
  2. In a microwave-safe bowl, place chocolate chips and shortening. Heat on high in microwave for 30 seconds. Remove bowl from microwave. Stir well. Place bowl back in microwave and microwave on high for an additional 30 seconds. Remove bowl from microwave. Stir well, until mixture is smooth. If necessary, place back in microwave for 15 seconds, then stir.
  3. Dip the end or part of the cookie in melted chocolate, being sure to coat all sides. Let excess drip back into bowl, then place cookie onto parchment paper and do not move it. Garnish cookie immediately with colored sprinkles while chocolate is still wet.
  4. Repeat process with all cookies. If necessary, make another ½ batch of melted chocolate to finish cookies or coat additional cookies. Let cookies rest on parchment paper for at least an hour or until chocolate has hardened. Transfer to serving platter, and enjoy!

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Buttery, chocolate-dipped shortbread Christmas treats are a cinch to make in 10 minutes, using store-bought cookies. A real-time-saver for the holidays!

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp

Pan-seared shrimp and fettucine pasta are paired with a creamy garlic Parmesan sauce in this easy to prepare, absolutely DELICIOUS Italian-inspired dinner. It’s creamy, absolutely delicious… and ready in 30 minutes!
Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Pan-seared shrimp and fettucine noodles are paired with a creamy garlic Parmesan sauce in this easy to prepare pasta dinner.

I found the recipe for the pasta sauce on Pinterest, and it was fairly similar to the sauce I usually make, so I decided to mak it. I added pan-seared shrimp, for a bit of protein and all around flavor! Once you’ve quickly pan-cooked the shrimp, the rest of the dish is cooked in one pan on the stove top. And guess what? It’s scrumptious! Here’s how easy it is to make this dish:

Shrimp are peeled and de-veined, seasoned lightly with salt and pepper, then pan seared on both sides in a bit of olive oil in a large skillet (on medium heat) until done (3-5 minutes). Set the shrimp aside and cover.

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Olive oil is heated on medium-high in a large skillet. The minced garlic is added to the hot oil, and cooked for about a minute, stirring often to prevent burning.  Butter, chicken broth and milk is then added and whisked together while the butter melts.

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Uncooked fettucine is then added to the sauce (I used my fresh homemade pasta, made from scratch). Salt and pepper are added; season to taste. Stir in the noodles and simmer (on medium-low heat) until the pasta has completely cooked through (this will take about 15-18 minutes for commercially prepared pasta).  Stir mixture occasionally while it cooks!

Once pasta is cooked through, add the fresh grated Parmesan cheese. Stir well, to combine.  If you find the sauce has thickened too much, simply add a touch more milk until it’s the thickness you desire.

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add the cooked shrimp to the skillet, and cook only until shrimp are heated through.

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Sprinkle fresh or dried parsley on top of dish before serving, and serve immediately, while hot!

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Pan-seared shrimp and fettucine noodles are paired with a creamy garlic Parmesan sauce in this easy to prepare pasta dinner.

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Pan-seared shrimp and fettucine noodles are paired with a creamy garlic Parmesan sauce in this easy to prepare pasta dinner.

The sauce is very creamy, with a wonderful garlic and Parmesan flavor, and the pan-seared shrimp adds delicious flavor AND protein to this dish!  We really enjoyed it; I hope you will give this dish a try!

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Pasta recipe adapted from: http://damndelicious.net/2014/10/11/one-pot-garlic-parmesan-pasta

Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Pan-seared shrimp and fettucine noodles are paired with a creamy garlic Parmesan sauce in this easy to prepare pasta dinner.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
For Shrimp:
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled, de-veined (lightly seasoned with salt/pepper)
For Pasta and Sauce:
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup milk (or more, if needed to thin out sauce later)
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • Salt/Pepper, to taste
  • 8 ounces uncooked fettucine pasta
  • ¼ cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • Chopped fresh or dried parsley flakes (approx. 1 T. for garnish, if desired)
Directions
  1. Heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in large skillet on medium heat. When oil is hot, add shrimp. Cook on both sides until done (approx 4-5 minutes total time). Transfer shrimp from skillet when done. Cover/keep warm.
  2. To make pasta sauce, heat olive oil on medium-high in a large skillet. Add minced garlic to hot oil; cook for about a minute, stirring often to prevent burning. Add butter, chicken broth and milk; whisk together while butter melts. Season sauce with salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. Stir in the UNCOOKED noodles and simmer (on medium-low heat) until the pasta has completely cooked through (this will take about 15-18 minutes for commercially prepared pasta). Stir mixture occasionally while it cooks!
  4. Once pasta is cooked through, add fresh grated Parmesan cheese. Stir well, to combine. If you find the sauce has thickened too much, simply add a touch more milk until it's the thickness you desire. Add the cooked shrimp to the skillet, stir to combine, and cook only until shrimp are heated through. Garnish hot pasta with a sprinkle of fresh or dried parsley before serving, and serve hot!

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Garlic Parmesan Pasta and Shrimp / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Pan-seared shrimp and fettucine noodles are paired with a creamy garlic Parmesan sauce in this easy to prepare pasta dinner.

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts

Who wants doughnuts? How about these Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts? They are baked (not fried), a little sweet, a little tangy, glazed with a lemon icing… and very good! Yes, please!Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks! These delicious Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts are tangy, sweet, simple to make, and baked (not fried)! A wonderful breakfast treat!

I found this recipe on Pinterest and decided to give it a try. I love all things lemon… and lemon poppy seed doughnuts with lemon glaze on top? C’mon!!!  I knew I had to make them.  The doughnuts are baked and are crazy easy to make.  Here’s how to prepare this yummy breakfast treat:

Spray a doughnut pan with non-stick spray; set aside. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Speaking of doughnut pans… I bought a Wilton 6 cavity doughnut pan a couple years ago with a gift card I received for my birthday. I think it was only $9 or $10 dollars on Amazon, and I’ve used it a lot.  It’s wonderful to be able to BAKE doughnuts, instead of FRYING them! This is what it looks like.

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

In a medium sized bowl, place flour, poppy seeds, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Whisk these together, then set bowl aside. In a separate bowl, combine butter, egg, granulated sugar, sour cream, milk, vanilla, lemon zest and juice. Whisk these together until batter is smooth, Pour this wet mixture into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Stir until all ingredients are combined into a thick batter, but make sure not to over mix!

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Carefully spoon (or pipe) the batter into doughnut pan, filling each cup 2/3 to 3/4 of the way full. If you have a 6 cup pan, you may have to bake these in batches. Bake doughnuts for approximately 10 minutes. Check them at 9 minutes. The edges should be slightly brown when done.

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

When done, remove pan from oven, and let it sit for a couple of minutes, then transfer the doughnuts from pan to a wire rack that is positioned on top of a piece of parchment paper (when you glaze the doughnuts later, any glaze that drips will land on parchment paper, which is better for easy clean up!). Repeat process with any leftover batter. Once done, let the doughnuts cool a bit before putting the glaze on them.

To make the lemon glaze, place powdered sugar, melted butter, lemon juice, milk and vanilla extract in a medium sized bowl. Mix together well, until you have a creamy glaze. I used 1½ Tablespoons of milk to get it to the consistency I wanted, but if you want the glaze to be thicker, only use 1 Tablespoon milk.

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Once doughnuts have cooled down, frost with the lemon glaze by picking up a doughnut and dipping the top side into the glaze to coat. Flip it over and put the doughnut back onto the wire rack.

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Sprinkle with a few poppy seeds, if desired. Repeat until all doughnuts have been glazed. Once the “icing” has firmed up, the doughnuts are ready to serve.

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The doughnuts are best eaten on the same day they are made, BUT you can store them for a couple days at room temp, if covered well.  They can also be frozen for a month or two, if wrapped and sealed well.  I made these doughnuts a couple weeks ago before our complete kitchen remodel begins (no oven for 6 weeks- boo hoo) and froze several of them. I’m looking forward to having them conveniently stashed in our freezer to pull out for a quick breakfast treat!

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

There you have it… Baked Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts!  A big thank you goes out to Sally at Sally’s  Baking Addiction for her lovely recipe!  Sure hope you will give these yummy lemon infused doughnuts a try.

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: https://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2016/09/02/glazed-lemon-poppy-seed-donuts/

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 9 Doughnuts
Ingredients
For the Doughnuts:
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon poppy seeds
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, melted (and cooled a bit)
  • 1 large egg
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
For the Lemon Glaze:
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1-2 Tablespoons milk (depends on thickness of glaze you desire)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Poppy seeds for garnish (completely optional)
Directions
  1. Spray a doughnut pan with non-stick spray and set aside. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, place flour, poppy seeds, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Whisk these together, then set bowl aside. In a separate bowl, combine butter, egg, granulated sugar, sour cream, milk, vanilla, lemon zest and juice. Whisk these together until batter is smooth, Pour this wet mixture into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Stir until all ingredients are combined into a thick batter, but make sure not to overmix!
  3. Carefully spoon (or pipe) the batter into doughnut pan, filling each cup ⅔ to ¾ of the way full. If you have a 6 cup pan, you may have to bake these in batches.
  4. Bake doughnuts for approximately 10 minutes. Check them at 9 minutes. The edges should be slightly brown when done. When done, remove pan from oven, and let it sit for a couple of minutes, then transfer the doughnuts from pan to a wire rack that is positioned on top of a piece of parchment paper (when you glaze the doughnuts later, any glaze that drips will land on parchment paper, which is better for easy clean up!). Repeat process with any leftover batter. Once done, let the doughnuts cool a bit before putting the glaze on them.
  5. To make the lemon glaze, place powdered sugar, melted butter, lemon juice, milk and vanilla extract in a medium sized bowl. Mix together well, until you have a creamy glaze. I used 1½ Tablespoons of milk to get it to the consistency I wanted, but if you want the glaze to be thicker, only use 1 Tablespoon milk.
  6. Once doughnuts have cooled down, frost with the lemon glaze by picking up a doughnut and dipping the top side into the glaze to coat. Flip it over and put the doughnut back onto the wire rack. Sprinkle with a few poppy seeds, if desired. Repeat until all doughnuts have been glazed. Once the "icing" has firmed up, the doughnuts are ready to serve.

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks! These delicious Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Doughnuts are tangy, sweet, simple to make, and baked (not fried)!

 

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge

You’re gonna love this delicious Microwave Rocky Road Fudge, with creamy chocolate, miniature marshmallows and crunchy pecans! Guess what? This Christmas “candy” only takes 5 minutes to prepare… in the microwave! Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks! You'll love this easy, creamy rocky road fudge, with marshmallows and pecans... and it only takes 5 minutes to make in a microwave!
I’ve been making my Mom’s Old-Fashioned Fudge each Christmas for almost 40 years now. It’s my all-time favorite recipe for homemade fudge.  But… I recently found a recipe for this sweet treat that is absolutely PERFECT to make when you don’t have a lot of time and want to whip up a QUICK, tasty Christmas surprise for family or friends.

The recipe for this fudge was in an old cookbook I had in my collection, and it caught my attention because it’s made IN THE MICROWAVE, and the entire batch is ready for the refrigerator in under 5 minutes! Whoa!  Talk about FAST!  So I decided to try it, and was really happy with the results!  Here’s how easy it is to make:

Line an 8×8 square pan with aluminum foil, leaving an overhang on the sides (the overhang will be used to easily lift out the fudge from the pan later). Coat bottom and sides of pan with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Place sifted powdered sugar, butter, milk, cocoa and salt in a large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave this mixture for 2 to 2½ minutes on HIGH power (100%) until butter has melted.

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Remove from microwave, and stir to combine.

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Immediately add chopped pecans, miniature marshmallows and vanilla extract. Stir mixture well, until all ingredients are blended together. Pour fudge mixture into the prepared 8×8 pan, and spread fudge to cover. Place fudge in refrigerator and chill for 1 hour, or until it firms up.

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Once fudge has firmed up, lift it out of pan using the extended edges of foil. Cut fudge into 1 inch square pieces. (Note: The pan I used had rounded corners. If you want straight corners on the outside edge pieces, make sure to use a square edged dish).

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

And just as quick as that… you’ve made homemade fudge!  Even if you are experiencing the “busy-ness” of the season, you can probably still find a few minutes to make this yummy Christmas goodie! Speaking of Christmas goodies, you might want to try Chocolate-Dipped Coconut Macaroons, Mom’s Refrigerator Fruitcake (it’s not THAT kind of fruitcake), Sprinkle Bars or Gingerbread Muffins! All are wonderful for gift-giving during the most wonderful time of the year!

What a delicious gift a plate of homemade fudge is for your family or a friend during the holidays (shhh… they don’t have to know it only took you a couple minutes to make!). Make sure to keep fudge stored in a covered airtight container in refrigerator. Enjoy!

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I hope you enjoy this season of the year.  It’s my favorite time of the year, and I am thankful it has deep meaning for me personally, because it reminds me how deeply loved I am by the One whose birth we celebrate… Jesus, who has completely changed my life forever!

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: The cookbook “Quick Gifts of Good Taste”, Published 1994, Leisure Arts, Inc., page 45.

Microwave Rocky Road Fudge
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Make a batch of decadent rocky road fudge in no time at all in your microwave! Perfect for gift-giving!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Christmas Goodies
Serves: Approx. 1½ pounds
Ingredients
  • 4½ cups sifted confectioners sugar (powdered sugar)
  • ½ cup butter (or margarine)
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ⅓ cup cocoa powder (unsweetened)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup chopped pecans (or walnuts)
  • ½ cup miniature marshmallows
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Directions
  1. Line an 8x8 square pan with aluminum foil, leaving an overhang on the sides. Coat bottom and sides of pan with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Place sifted powdered sugar, butter, milk, cocoa and salt in a large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave this mixture for 2 to 2½ minutes on HIGH power (100%) until butter has melted. Remove from microwave, and stir to combine.
  3. Immediately add chopped pecans, miniature marshmallows and the vanilla extract. Stir mixture well, until all ingredients are blended together. Pour fudge mixture into the prepared 8x8 pan, and spread fudge to cover. Place fudge in refrigerator and chill for 1 hour, or until it firms up.
  4. Once fudge has firmed up, lift it out of pan using the extended edges of foil. Cut fudge into 1 inch square pieces. Store fudge in covered airtight container in refrigerator. Enjoy!

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Microwave Rocky Road Fudge / The Grateful Girl Cooks! You'll love this easy, creamy rocky road fudge, with marshmallows and pecans... and it only takes 5 minutes to make in a microwave!

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Thanksgiving Blessings

I love Thanksgiving. The tradition we have of gathering as a family, enjoying a wonderful meal together, and celebrating the blessings we have, truly makes it one of my favorite holidays!Thanksgiving Blessings / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Let's give thanks... with grateful hearts!

It seems like Thanksgiving is one of the last truly non-commercialized holidays left on the books, which is why I love it so much.  The “things” that are most important in life are celebrated. This year my kitchen is completely torn apart (down to floor and wall studs) as we are in the middle of a complete remodel.  I usually host Thanksgiving dinner in our home, so this year we will go to a relative’s home, instead. We will celebrate this holiday sharing a meal, swapping stories, playing games, eating pie, laughing a lot, and saying THANK YOU to God for our blessings, big and small!

I’m so grateful to have such good childhood memories of Thanksgiving.  My memories include getting up to watch the big parade on TV, Mom and Dad in the kitchen taste testing the Southern cornbread dressing until they got the seasoning “just right”, smelling the turkey roasting in the oven, nibbling on snacks, then sitting down to dinner in the afternoon with all the traditional “fixins’. It was really fun just being together with Dad, Mom, and my two younger sisters!

Thanksgiving Blessings / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

We knew that even though we didn’t have a lot of money or live in a fancy house… that we were BLESSED in so many other ways… good friends, clothes to wear, food to eat, our health, etc.  We grew up loving God and so it was very natural to give our thanks to HIM for our blessings, for truly they were just that. BLESSINGS.  We knew that others may not have homes to stay warm in, family to share the day with, or even food to eat… so that alone was a huge blessing to be thankful for.

Thanksgiving Blessings / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Every Thanksgiving I’m reminded of a story from the Bible, in the book written by Luke (the physician). In Chapter 17, he wrote about a time when Jesus was about to enter a village and was met by 10 men who had leprosy. They BEGGED Jesus to take pity on them and heal them. Jesus told them to go and show themselves to the village priests, so they could be considered “clean” again (since people with that disease were considered “outcasts”).  The men did what he said, “and as they went, they were healed”, BUT ONE and ONLY ONE of them upon seeing he was healed made a point to go back to Jesus and say THANK YOU. That gets me every time.  Ten men had their lives changed forever through the miraculous gift of healing, and yet ONLY ONE of them took time to offer their thanks to the gift-giver. Whoa.

Thanksgiving Blessings / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Let's give thanks... with grateful hearts!

I want to be like that one man… one who acknowledges the GIVER of all good things at all times.  I want to be the woman who is grateful for what I DO have, rather than someone who sits around grumbling about what I DON’T have. The holiday of Thanksgiving merely fine tunes our attention toward giving thanks in a simple way.  So, this year, when you sit down to your Thanksgiving table and meal, be it elaborate or simple… whether you consider your blessings many or few, be the one who remembers to say “thank you” to the gift-giver!

From our home in Oregon to yours… May your blessings be many, and your sorrows be few. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Thanksgiving Blessings / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Let's give thanks... with grateful hearts!

Thanksgiving Blessings / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

 

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken is a wonderfully simple poultry dish featuring a marinade of Chinese and Thai sauces, takes about 20 minutes to cook, and is absolutely delicious!Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Chicken thighs get an Asian-inspired twist from a Hoisin, Sriracha and Honey marinade, then are cooked until done. Easy, sweet, slightly spicy and delicious!

I found this chicken recipe on Pinterest and it sounded quite good, so I decided to try it! YUM!  Hoisin sauce, honey, soy sauce, and Sriracha sauce, garlic and ginger form the base for a slightly sweet, slightly spicy marinade for plump chicken thighs.  Once marinated for 15 minutes, chicken is pan-cooked until done. That’s it! See how easy this recipe is? And wow, it sure tastes GOOD! Here’s how to make this simple, Asian flavor-inspired dish:

Bone-in and skin on chicken thighs were used for this recipe, but you are welcome to use boneless, skinless if you want. I usually remove the skin from chicken, but found that in this particular recipe, the skin crisps up very nicely and added to the flavor!  If using boneless thighs, the cooking time might be a bit less, so keep that in mind while cooking the chicken!

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Marinade is mixed up, chicken is covered with sauce, and marinates (or “takes a bath”) in it for 15 minutes.

Oil is heated on MEDIUM heat in a large skillet. Once oil is very hot, the chicken is removed from marinade (**MAKE SURE TO SAVE THE MARINADE), and added to the hot skillet with the skin side facing down.  Cook chicken on both sides, and make sure the skin side gets browned very well.

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Once both sides of the chicken have been browned, turn the heat on stove down to LOW. Pour the reserved marinade back into your skillet. Spoon sauce over chicken thighs, and continue to cook.  As chicken cooks, the sauce will slightly reduce in volume and thicken up  a bit.

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Cook until chicken is fully cooked through or reaches an internal temp. of 165° F.  If using bone-in thighs, cooking time will be approximately 25 minutes total… slightly less if no bone. Occasionally spoon sauce over each piece of chicken during the cooking process.

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Once chicken is done, remove from heat, and transfer chicken to individual serving dishes.  Sprinkle with white sesame seeds, if desired. Serve, and enjoy the wonderful Asian-inspired flavors in this Hoisin Sriracha Chicken dish!

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I really hope you will consider making this chicken dish… it was easy to make and was REALLY tasty!  If you’re interested, you might also want to check out my blog post on how to make Homemade Hoisin Sauce (it’s easy, also!). I used it in this recipe!

I’ve also added the Weight Watcher Smart Points per serving in the Notes section of the printable recipe below, for those following their nutrition plan. We really did enjoy this meal!  Hope you and your family do, too! Have a wonderful day.

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source:  http://rasamalaysia.com/hoisin-sriracha-chicken/

Hoisin Sriracha Chicken
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Chicken thighs get an Asian-inspired twist from a Hoisin, Sriracha and Honey marinade, then are cooked until done. Easy, sweet, slightly spicy and totally delicious!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Asian
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 4 large chicken thighs, with bone in and skin on (optional-see note)
  • 1½ Tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • ½ Tablespoon Sriracha sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger (peeled, minced)
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 Tablespoon oil
  • White sesame seeds for garnish (optional)
Directions
  1. Mix hoisin, soy, sriracha, honey, garlic, ginger and salt in a medium bowl; stir to fully combine ingredients. Add chicken to marinade and turn to fully cover; let chicken marinate for 15 minutes.
  2. Heat oil on MEDIUM heat in a large skillet. Once oil is very hot, remove chicken from marinade (**MAKE SURE TO SAVE THE MARINADE), and add to hot skillet with the skin side facing down. Cook chicken on both sides; make sure the skin side gets browned very well.
  3. Once both sides of the chicken have been browned, turn the heat down to LOW. Pour the reserved marinade into skillet. Spoon sauce over chicken thighs, and continue to cook. As chicken cooks, the sauce will slightly reduce in volume and thicken up a bit. Cook until chicken is fully cooked through, or reaches an internal temperature of 165° F. If using bone-in thighs, cooking time will be approximately 25 minutes total... slightly less if no bone. Occasionally spoon a bit of sauce over each piece of chicken during the cooking process.
  4. Once chicken is done, remove pan from heat, and transfer chicken to individual serving plates. Garnish chicken with white sesame seeds, if desired. Serve, and enjoy!
Notes
Boneless, skinless thighs may be substituted. Cooking time will be slightly less. Cook to internal temperature of 165 degrees (approx. 20 minutes).
Weight Watchers? Bone in with skin = 11 Smart Points per serving. Boneless skinless = 7 Smart Points

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Hoisin Sriracha Chicken / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Chicken thighs get an Asian-inspired twist from a Hoisin, Sriracha and Honey marinade, then are cooked until done. Easy, sweet, slightly spicy and delicious!

Pecan Pie Truffles

Chocolate covered Pecan Pie Truffles are a yummy, sweet treat to make for family or gift-giving during the holidays! I find it hard to believe Christmas is right around the corner once again! Time to start making Christmas goodies for family, friends and neighbors!Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Chocolate covered Pecan Pie Truffles are a yummy, sweet dessert treat for family or gift-giving during the holidays!

The recipe I’m sharing with you today is one I found on Pinterest. I immediately thought of making these for Christmas to put out on a goodie tray, but you know what? These would also be yummy as part of a dessert table at a Thanksgiving feast! They’re delicious, and look like they took a lot more time than they really do to make.  Here’s how to make them:

Chopped pecans are placed on a baking sheet (sprayed with a non-stick spray), then baked for 5 minutes (to lightly toast them).

Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Place toasted pecans (reserve 1/4 cup for garnish later!), graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and salt in a medium sized bowl. Add maple syrup, corn syrup and vanilla extract to bowl. Stir well to thoroughly combine ingredients. Refrigerate this mixture for 15 minutes.

Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Remove pecan filling from refrigerator. Shape mixture into balls about 1″ wide, by rolling mixture between hands. Place each pecan ball onto a 9×13 parchment paper lined baking sheet. Place baking sheet in refrigerator and chill the pecan balls for 30 minutes.

Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

*NOTE: If using melting chocolate, prepare according to package directions.  If using chocolate chips and shortening (which is what I did), melt chocolate and shortening in microwave by heating on high for 30 seconds. Stir. Heat for another 30 seconds on high. Stir until mixture becomes smooth. If necessary, heat for an additional 15 seconds, but be careful not to burn chocolate.

Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Dip each pecan ball into the melted chocolate. I use a fork to hold the ball while I dip, and if necessary a spoon to gently pour additional chocolate over truffle.  When they are fully covered with chocolate, place each truffle onto parchment paper lined baking sheet. Note:  After every 3-4 truffles are dipped, sprinkle tops with reserved pecan pieces (you want to sprinkle them with pecans BEFORE the chocolate hardens!). Repeat process until all are coated.

Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Let chocolate harden by placing truffles in refrigerator.  Once the chocolate is firm, they are ready to serve!  Enjoy the pecan pie filling taste in these delicious truffles! If you’re feeling generous, make up a little plate of goodies for a friend or neighbor… and spread the joy of the season!

Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Hope you will consider making these little treats. I am making them for giving as Christmas treats, but they would be perfect to take to a Thanksgiving meal, as well.  They are not hard at all to make, and I believe you will really enjoy them! Have a great day!

Recipe Source:  Julie, at http://glitterandgoulash.com/pecan-pie-truffles/

Pecan Pie Truffles
 
Prep time
Total time
 
As Prepared By:
Serves: approx. 30
Ingredients
  • 2½ cups toasted pecans, finely chopped (divided)
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons real maple syrup
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla
  • 16 oz. melting chocolate OR 12 ounces semi-sweet choc. chips + 2 heaping Tbl. shortening
Directions
  1. Spread the chopped pecans on a baking sheet (sprayed with a non-stick spray), then bake for 5 minutes at 350° (to lightly toast them). When done, measure out ¼ cup; set aside and reserve for garnish.
  2. Place remaining pecans, graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and salt in a medium sized bowl. Add maple syrup, corn syrup and vanilla extract. Stir well to fully mix ingredients.Refrigerate for 15 minutes.
  3. Remove pecan filling from refrigerator. Shape mixture into balls about 1" wide, by rolling mixture between hands. Place each pecan ball onto a 9x13 parchment paper lined baking sheet. Place baking sheet in refrigerator and chill the pecan balls for 30 minutes.
  4. Once pecan balls have chilled, prepare the dipping chocolate. *NOTE: If using melting chocolate, prepare according to package directions. If using chocolate chips and shortening, melt chocolate and shortening in microwave by heating on high for 30 seconds. Stir. Heat another 30 seconds on high. Stir until mixture becomes smooth. If necessary, heat for an additional 15 seconds, but be careful not to burn chocolate.
  5. Dip each pecan ball into the melted chocolate (I use a fork to hold the ball while I dip, and if necessary, a spoon to gently pour additional chocolate over truffle). When they are fully covered with chocolate, place truffle onto parchment paper lined baking sheet. Note: After every 3-4 truffles are dipped, sprinkle tops with reserved pecan pieces (you want to sprinkle them with pecans BEFORE the chocolate hardens!). Repeat process until all are coated. Let chocolate harden by placing truffles in refrigerator. Once the chocolate is firm, they are ready to serve!

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Pecan Pie Truffles / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Chocolate covered Pecan Pie Truffles are a yummy, sweet dessert treat for family or gift-giving during the holidays!

Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce

It’s almost Thanksgiving, and I am looking forward to making one of my favorite dishes… Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce! It’s sooo good, and is incredibly easy to make with only a few ingredients!Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks! This sauce is so good, and is incredibly easy to make with a few ingredients!

As a kid, I didn’t like cranberry sauce. I thought of it as the big red wiggly blob of funny tasting stuff from a can that my Mom put out at Thanksgiving.  I, of course, (being the dutiful daughter that I am), followed her example for many years in my own home. Funny thing… I never really liked it, and the gelatinous texture made me cringe.

Years later my Mom began making a homemade cranberry-orange sauce, and I found I really enjoyed the fresh sweet and tartness and have that fantastic recipe here on the blog, too.  Her recipe is almost more like a fresh “relish”, requires no cooking and has orange, apple and fresh cranberries in it (finely ground using a food processor).  I tend to make that version often during the holidays; it’s so good I can eat it right out of the bowl with a spoon, and is very similar to the kind sold at Trader Joes!

Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I also enjoy a whole berry cranberry orange sauce, which is cooked… with most of the cranberries “popped”, but left whole in the sauce. I slightly adapted my Mom’s original recipe to make this version.  This recipe does not include apples, requires a very short cooking time to enable the cranberries to “pop”, and is full of cranberry orange flavor! It tastes AMAZING!

 

Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The recipe is so easy to make from scratch. Basically the ingredients are placed into a large saucepan, and mixture is cooked, stirring frequently until most of the cranberries have “popped”, which usually takes between 8-10 minutes.

Here’s an interesting side note – did you know when the cranberries are cooked at a high temperature and “pop” open, they release pectin? Yep, they do, and then the pectin turns around and slightly thickens the sauce naturally.  Who knew a sauce using these two main ingredients could be so delicious?

Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Anyways… I hope you will consider making your very own fresh cranberry orange sauce this Thanksgiving.  I think you will be amazed at how great it tastes!  The awesome thing is that it can be made a couple days before you serve it, so it can free up your precious time in the kitchen the day of the big feast (just keep it covered in the fridge!).

Now that you know how to make your own whole berry cranberry orange sauce, you can serve it proudly with all your other delicious traditional Thanksgiving side dishes! I love to serve Pecan Praline Yams and Brown Butter Green Beans with Toasted Almonds and Red Peppers with our Thanksgiving meal, along with Creamy Mashed Potatoes and Southern Cornbread Dressing.  YUM!

Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

From our family to yours… we wish you a memorable Thanksgiving with those family or friends dear to you. As our family gathers, we are mindful of the many blessings, large and small, that God has poured into our lives, and we acknowledge and thank Him for these gifts, with overflowing, grateful hearts!

Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

My hope is that you, as well, would know the joy of a heart filled with gratitude this season!

Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Adapted from my recipe for Homemade Cranberry-Orange Sauce

Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
It's easy to make a phenomenal tasting whole berry cranberry orange sauce from scratch with only a few ingredients!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Sauce
Serves: Approx. 2 cups
Ingredients
  • 1 bag fresh cranberries (12-16 ounces)
  • Zest from 1 large orange (reserve just a bit for garnish)
  • ½ cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • Extra orange zest for garnish
Directions
  1. In a medium saucepan, mix together orange zest, fresh squeezed orange juice, water and granulated sugar. Stir and cook on medium heat for 2-3 minutes until the sugar has dissolved.
  2. Add fresh cranberries. Bring sauce to a boil. Once mixture is boiling, turn the heat down to a low simmer. Cook (uncovered), stirring often, for 7-8 minutes, until the cranberries have "popped" open and the sauce has thickened. Once this occurs, remove the cranberry sauce from heat, and set aside. Let cranberry sauce cool completely. When ready to serve, garnish with additional orange zest, if desired. Serve this delicious sauce at room temperature or refrigerated! May be made 2-3 days in advance. Store in refrigerator in covered container.

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Whole Berry Cranberry Orange Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks! This sauce is so good, and is incredibly easy to make with a few ingredients!

 

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