Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

I was going to wait a little longer to post these amazing Carrot Cake Cupcakes, but then realized they would be totally perfect for Easter so I had to share them ASAP! I know I usually try to post healthier recipes on this blog, but you have to splurge sometimes! I made these for a work party last week and they were a major hit!

I simply adore carrot cake. The carrots make for a perfectly moist cake. I love all the warm spices like cinnamon and ginger. And who could possibly resist that big fluffy cream cheese frosting on top? Not me. Just hand me a spoon!

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

These cupcakes are pretty simple to make, but I do beg of you, please use freshly grated carrots! One of the benefits to baking with a veggie like carrots is all that moisture they add to the cake, but you won’t get that with pre-shredded carrots that are dried out. It’s a little extra work to grate the carrots, but it’s so worth it!

You can customize these cupcakes a little bit. I used crushed pineapple in this recipe because I love the flavor it adds to the cake, but if pineapple isn’t your thing, use applesauce! I know some people like to add raisins to their carrot cake, but I’m really not a fan of raisins, so feel free to add them if desired! Finally, I added walnuts, but you can certainly leave them out if you don’t like nuts!

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Southwestern Cobb Salad

Southwestern Cobb Salad

Salads! Salads! Salads! I officially declare it salad season. Actually, that’s kind of silly for me to say because I’m pretty obsessed with salads all year, but it’s warming up and I just want a ton of salads lately loaded with yummy ingredients. My favorite salad? The Cobb! I just love all the toppings on a good Cobb salad, so I decided to make a Cobb salad, but with a southwestern twist! This salad is topped with chicken, hard boiled egg, tomatoes, corn, and black beans – lots of good stuff!

Southwestern Cobb Salad

See that creamy and dreamy dressing there?! I made a quick and easy avocado dressing for this salad. It’s a pretty healthy dressing too! There is actually no mayo or oil. All that creaminess comes straight from the avocado. It’s really easy to mix up in a little food processor or blender. If you have leftovers, I do recommend using the dressing within 3 days as it can start to brown.

Southwestern Cobb Salad

Strawberry Cream Cheese Pastry

Strawberry Cream Cheese Pastry

I know St. Patrick’s Day is this week, but I’m already thinking about Easter which is in just a couple of weeks! I always like to think about yummy Easter brunch recipes to share with you guys and this year, it’s this Strawberry Cream Cheese Pastry!

Strawberry Cream Cheese Pastry

This is really a very easy pastry to make and would be the perfect brunch addition! I took a big shortcut by using frozen puff pastry sheets. So really the only work is mixing up the filling and then spreading it on! I’m no pastry artist, but I attempted to give this pastry a braided look which I thought was going to be complicated, but then only ended up taking me a couple of minutes to do. It’s certainly not perfect, but it really doesn’t need to be! You guys can check out the photo at the bottom of the post to give you a better idea of how to construct this pastry in case my directions are confusing!

I call this a strawberry pastry, but you can really use any fruit jam that you like. I think raspberry or apricot would also be lovely!

Strawberry Cream Cheese Pastry

Cauliflower Soup

Cauliflower Soup

I’m still holding onto cooler weather with a death grasp. Do not leave me, comfortable temperature! I need you! I have one more comforting soup recipe to share with you guys today to enjoy before it starts to warm up!

I love potato soup so much, but potatoes are obviously high in carbs, so I’ve been trying to limit eating them. In the low carb world, cauliflower can be a great substitute for potatoes, rice, or even as flour! So I decided to turn my favorite Easy Potato Soup recipe into a lower carb version using cauliflower.

Cauliflower Soup

I was really pleased with how this soup came out. I felt like I was eating potato soup so it did the trick for me! The base of this recipe is quite simple and you can really try a variety of spices and add-ins. I did more of a loaded potato-style with crumbled bacon, green onion, and cheddar cheese. But, I was also thinking a Tuscan bean version would be super yummy with white beans and spinach or kale. So, my point is, you can easily experiment with this easy and filling low-carb soup!

Cauliflower Soup

Blood Orange Margaritas

Blood Orange Margaritas

It’s almost the weekend! We are going to celebrate with these amazing Blood Orange Margaritas!

I first discovered blood oranges just a couple of years ago. If you have never tried one, I recommend you run out and get some ASAP! Aside from their gorgeous red color, they have this incredible almost raspberry-like flavor that is just to die for!! Unfortunately, Arizona’s supply is not that impressive, but I recently found some decent ones at my store and stocked up.

I wanted to make a frozen margarita, but if that’s not your thing, you can certainly make this recipe on the rocks instead of blending with ice. I added agave nectar to sweeten these margs, but you could also use simple syrup if desired. I contemplated adding some triple sec, but honestly, that delicious blood orange juice speaks for itself and so triple sec just didn’t seem necessary! Blood Oranges are so perfect for margaritas. I am madly in love with that deep red color!

Blood Orange Margaritas

Chocolate Banana Muffins

Chocolate Banana Muffins

We have been quite a sickly family as of late. I’ve been sick for a good three weeks now, got my husband sick, and my little girl is also sick. We just can’t get better! Our appetites have been pretty cruddy too. Maddie barely wants to eat or drink anything since she got sick. I had a bunch of bananas sitting on my counter that were perfectly ripened so decided to make these Chocolate Banana Muffins and they have been one of the only things my toddler will happily share with me!

Chocolate Banana Muffins

I adapted this recipe from my Chocolate Zucchini Muffins recipe. If you haven’t made those muffins yet, you must! The positive reviews speak for themselves! Like the zucchini muffins, these banana muffins do not contain any butter. Instead I use coconut oil and protein-rich Greek yogurt. And compared to your typical bakery muffin, these muffins contain far less sugar. Best of all though? They are rich, moist, and perfectly chocolatey!

Chocolate Banana Muffins