Pumpkin Pecan Granola

This recipe is courtesy of Minimalist Baker. I’ve made some changes noted below. It’s addictive!


  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 1 1/4 cups raw pecans
  • 1/3 cup raw pepitas (I used 1/4 cup sliced almonds, 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, and 1T flaxseeds)
  • 3 Tbsp sugar (I used white sugar)
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • A dash of cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup Grade A maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree (I used Libby’s)


  1. Preheat the oven to 340F.
  2. Combine the oats, nuts, seeds, spices, sugar, and salt in a bowl.
  3. In a saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the coconut oil, maple syrup and pumpkin puree, stirring constantly with a whisk or spatula. Pour over the oat/nut combination and stir well.
  4. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Transfer half the mixture to the parchment paper and make sure it is spread out evenly in one layer. Bake at 340F for 23 minutes (the original recipe called for 23-33 minutes, but my oven started burning it at 24), making sure to flip the granola halfway through. Repeat with the second batch. The granola should be crispy and lightly browned.

You can store this in an airtight container for 2 weeks.



Fluffy Chocolate Chip Cookies

These cookies are fluffy! They puff up when baking and remain soft and chewy for several days. I found this recipe in a Good Housekeeping Cookies book, and I’ll be making these again. I dropped the dough into blobs measuring 2 tablespoons instead of 1.


  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 package (16 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips (1 cup–I used the large Nestle morsels)
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) chopped pecans, or walnuts (I used walnuts)


  1. Preheat oven to 375F. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the butter and brown and white sugars on medium speed until light and fluffy.
  3. Beat in the eggs and vanilla until combined.
  4. Reduce speed to low and add the flour mixture, beating until combined.
  5. Stir in the chocolate chips and nuts.
  6. Drop the dough by rounded tablespoons (or two tablespoons if you want bigger cookies) 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 375F 10-12 minutes, until golden at the edges. For my oven, 10 minutes was perfect.
  7. Transfer cookies to wire rack and let cool. You can also bake two batches at one time, rotating halfway between the upper and lower oven racks.



Blueberry Crisp with Walnuts

Since I’ve tried a strawberry crisp, it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t also try out a new blueberry crisp recipe. Tarter and juicier than the strawberry one, this crisp goes well with vanilla ice cream too. The recipe is courtesy of Food Network.


For the filling:

  • 6 cups blueberries, rinsed and dried (I used a pint)
  • 1 T corn starch
  • 1/4 cup sugar

For the crumble:

  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans (I used walnuts)
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened


  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Mix filling ingredients together and spoon into greased 2-quart baking dish (or bread pan).
  2. Combine crumble ingredients together and sprinkle over filling.
  3. Bake for at 375F for 40 minutes.


Lactose-free Banana Bread

My first post in a while!

Since we need bread recipes without milk, I’ve been experimenting with applesauce. The possibilities are endless! You may remember my Busybee Banana Bread. Well, I tweaked that just a bit to make this recipe.


  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 3/4-7/8 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon



In a bowl, combine the mashed bananas with the applesauce. Add the baking soda and salt. Stir well. Add the sugar, cinnamon, egg, and vanilla. Continue mixing. Add the flour. Stir in the walnuts.

Pour batter into 4×8 loaf pan sprayed with cooking oil. Bake on center rack at 350F for 1 hour or until toothpick inserted into the center is clean.

Yield: 8 slices

I use a dark loaf pan but glass can also be used.
I use a dark loaf pan but glass can also be used.

Marshmallow White Chocolate Brownies (from a box)

After making these brownies, I do not think I will ever make brownies from scratch again! There are tons of websites out there that instruct you on how to add things to your brownies from a box to make them taste richer and better.


  • 1 box (13×9 family size, 18.3 oz) Betty Crocker Fudge Brownie Mix
  • 1/2 cup mini marshmallows
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup white chocolate chips


Prepare the brownie mix as the box suggests. Add the marshmallows, walnuts, and white chocolate chips. Bake for the amount suggested on the box plus 1 minute.


The Best Banana Bread

You can never go wrong with a Better Homes and Gardens recipe. Every recipe I’ve tried from this book has been amazing. This recipe can be found on page 119 in the Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook.


  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (about 5 medium)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup cooking oil (I used vegetable) or melted butter
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 tsp salt


Grease the bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides of one 9x5x3 inch loaf pan and set aside. I sprayed it with Pam.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and 1/4 tsp salt. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and set aside.

In a separate bowl, combine the beaten eggs, bananas, sugar, and oil. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir until just moistened. Add the nuts. The batter will be lumpy and sticky. Spoon it into the pan.

Bake at 350F for 55-60 minutes (I baked mine for 65). I also covered it with foil the last 5 minutes to prevent the top from getting too brown.


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Pear Crisp

I had a couple of pears in the fridge and looked up pear crisps online. I found this recipe on The Pioneer Woman’s website. I halved the recipe, so here are the ingredients I used below:


2 cups pears (peeled, cored, and diced)

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/8 tsp salt

For the topping:

1 cup flour

1/6 cup granulated sugar

1/6 cup light brown sugar

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/2 stick butter, melted

1/4 cup chopped walnuts (she uses pecans in her recipe, but I didn’t have any)


Preheat the oven to 350F. In a bowl, stir the diced pears with the 1/3 cup granulated sugar and salt. Set aside.

In another bowl, mix together the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, and pecans. Drizzle the melted butter on top and stir well.

Pour the pears into a baking dish sprayed with cooking oil. Top with the crumb mixture.

Bake for 30 minutes on the middle rack. Bake for an additional 10 minutes (I baked it for 20) on the top rack for a golden brown crust.