Thursday, January 31, 2013

Amazingly Easy Homemade Donuts

I have blogged before about how important it is to us that our daughter fills her belly at each meal.  But sometimes she gets an idea in her mind about what she's hungry for and it can take a lot of persuasive work to convince her to eat something other than that.  We try to keep plenty of options in the house that we know she likes... for breakfast this is typically toast with cream cheese or peanut butter, blueberry waffles with cool whip, cereal, fruit, or muffins.  Sometimes she surprises us and asks for something we are not prepared for and this is when my creativity really gets put to the test.  Last weekend she got up and asked for donuts.  Donuts!  I had tried on another occasion to make donuts with some things I had in the house (not including typical donut making things like yeast or a donut pan).  They had turned out okay but they weren't amazing.  The taste was good but they were a little too sticky and crunchy on the bottom.  So when our daughter asked for donuts again I was kind of at a loss.  I figured I probably had about 10 minutes to try to figure something out before I would need to offer her a different alternative so I quickly started googling recipes and found one to try.

OH MY GOODNESS!  These donuts were perfect!  They were super easy and required minimal ingredients, all of which I had on hand.  They were the perfect taste and texture.  I was amazingly impressed with myself, I won't lie, but I shouldn't toot my horn too much because #1: I did not create the recipe and #2: these are not complicated at all and anyone could make them.  I promise if you make them you will love them and whoever you serve them to will be very impressed!  It took me less time to make these than it would have for me to drive someplace and purchase a dozen donuts (which I would not have done, FYI) and it was certainly less expensive.  Try them!  You will not be disappointed!

Ingredients for donuts:
  • one can of biscuits (I used a small roll of 10 buttermilk biscuits 7.5 oz)
  • about 1/2 cup oil (enough to cover half of the donuts while frying in a pan... add more if you need to)
Ingredients for icing:
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • sprinkles, cinnamon sugar, or whatever you are in the mood for!
If the icing is too thick, add a tiny bit more milk, if it's too runny, add more sugar.  The thicker it is the more frosting-like it will be.  A little bit thinner and it will be more like a glaze.  

  • Cut circles in the centers of the biscuits (I used the cap from a soda bottle)
  • Put oil in frying pan (enough to cover half of the donut pieces)
  • Heat oil over medium heat
  • Place donuts and donut holes in pan and let sit until golden brown on the bottom (just a couple of minutes.  Turn over the brown the other side.  Pay attention because these will get brown quickly!
  • Remove from pan to a plate covered with a paper towel (to drain the oil)
  • Dip in icing and decorate, or sprinkle with cinnamon sugar

You can find the original recipe here.

If you don't have oil, you can do a version with butter, baking in the oven (recipe here).  I liked these but like I said before, they got too crunchy on the bottom for our liking.  If this is all you have though and you need donuts pronto, they will work!

All of the ingredients for this recipe are things I already had on hand.  I use these same ingredients in tons of recipes so try to always stay stocked up on them.  If you don't keep these things on hand, you should!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

2 Ingredient Pumpkin Cake with Apple Cider Glaze

That's right, folks, TWO INGREDIENTS!  This could not get any easier (or yummier).  I have to be honest that when I first came across this recipe I did not have high hopes for it.  All I could think of was a bland, dry, totally non-delicous slab of orange colored dough.  I was actually skeptical enough that I felt a little bit like I was wasting ingredients all the way up until I took my first bite.  And then.... OH MY GOSH!  This is AMAZING.  I will never look for a different pumpkin cake recipe.  I am not exaggerating.  I promise you will love this.

  • 1 can pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
  • 1 box yellow cake mix (doesn't need to be fancy, I used a box of traditional, not extra moist or anything)
  • I also added some pumpkin pie spice to mine but that will change this to a 3 ingredient cake... It's up to you.  1 teaspoon will do the trick if you want to add it (I used 2 teaspoons and it was a bit much... further proof of how skeptical I was!).

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Mix pumpkin and cake mix together with electric mixer until combined (it will be thick)
  • Scoop into a greased 6x10 baking dish (or something close to that size)
  • Bake for 28 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean (don't overbake it)
  • Let cool for a few minutes and then flip it onto a platter and pour glaze over top
  • I cut some slits in the top of my cake prior to pouring to get the glaze all down inside too

For glaze, mix the following together:
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider
  • 3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Let me know how it turns out!

You can view the original recipe here.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Toddler Math Worksheet

I saw this idea on a blog yesterday and kicked myself for not thinking of it already!  If you have a toddler like mine that loves stickers, numbers, and wishes they were already in school, this is for you!  So easy, nothing to clean up, fun, and great brain exercise!  The pictures speak for themselves...

As a side note, do you peel off the sticky paper around the stickers on sticker sheets?  It truly makes them much easier to use and therefore way more fun for little fingers!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Cinnamon Bites

Cinnamon Bites are a super easy and yummy breakfast treat. You will love them and they are way yummier than any of those store bought cinnamon rolls... no doubt about it!  They are cheaper too. We typically have everything we need for these in the house at all times, with the exception of the biscuits maybe, which you can usually get for a dollar or less at the grocery store.

You can top these with icing if you like (we do) but I apologize for the fact that the icing is one of those recipes in which I don't use exact measurements!  You can't really mess it up though - if it gets too thin, add more sugar, if it gets too thick, add more milk (a little bit of milk goes a long way so only add it a drop at a time).

Here's the recipe!  Enjoy!

  • 1 roll of small canned biscuits
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 stick butter (1/4 cup)
  • powdered sugar (maybe a 1/2 cup-ish?)
  • couple teaspoons milk (not sure how much, just add drops and mix until you get the consistency you want)
  • drop of vanilla

  • Heat oven to 350 degrees
  • Put butter in a pie plate in the oven as it heats and remove when the butter is melted
  • Cut biscuits into quarters, covering bottom of pie plate, on top of melted butter (I use scissors)
  • Mix together sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over top
  • Bake for 15 minutes
  • While baking, mix together icing ingredients
  • After removing from oven, drizzle immediately with icing, and serve!
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