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Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Creamy Spinach Pesto Salad Dressing

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

I don’t know about about you but when June rolls around I am so ready to get my salad on! I actually love eating salads year round. But something about the warm, summer weather makes me crave salad.

And when it comes to dressing I am not a traditional girl. Ranch? No thanks. Italian? Blech. I used to always eat honey mustard (I even have over four versions of it on the blog!!), but when I had to give up mustard for two years I lost that taste too.

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

My New Favorite

These days my salad dressing usually contains desiccated liver, fermented kale or aquatic greens…or all three if I’m really feeling the need to boost nutrients.

But there is one thing I always love on my salads – pesto! I usually make a really mild and simple version of pesto with peas (super kid friendly!!!).

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Recently I had the opportunity to try some Taylor Farms organic salad mixes. I went right for the baby spinach and popped it in the blender with olive oil, Stonyfield whole milk yogurt and seasoning. Amazing!

I served it with dinner on a bed of Taylor Farms mixed spring greens. The family loved it! My six-year old still isn’t a fan of lettuce salads. So he had cucumber, avocado and parmesan cheese topped with the creamy spinach pesto.  He sure was happy with his salad – and even asked for it again the next day!

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Kid-Friendly Greens

Creamy spinach pesto is a great way to get your kids to eat their greens. It does not taste like eating spinach (my son will vouch for that!). Plus it is combined with healthy fats like whole milk yogurt and extra virgin olive oil to help utilize the vitamins and minerals in the spinach.

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Even if your kids aren’t big salad eaters yet this creamy spinach pesto works well for dipping veggies or even chicken nuggets. We also like to eat it on noodles (pesto pasta!).

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Sometimes I’m sneaky and add a little desiccated liver. My kids don’t mind the taste since I add it to everything. It really boosts the Vitamin A content!

If you’re like me and craving a good summer salad this dressing is for you! Grab a big bowl, some Taylor Farms organic salad mix, your favorite salad toppers and a big helping of creamy spinach pesto! Summer has officially begun.

What is your favorite salad dressing? Do you make your own dressing creations?

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Creamy Spinach Pesto Salad Dressing
Serves 6
A creamy green dressing the whole family will love!
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cups tightly packed spinach
  2. 1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
  3. 2 Tbsp. plain, whole milk yogurt
  4. 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  5. 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  6. 1/8 tsp. garlic powder
  7. 1/8 tsp. onion powder
  8. optional: 1/8 tsp. desiccated liver, 1/8 tsp. fermented kale powder, 1 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds, 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. Run warm water over the peas to thaw or let sit on the counter to thaw.
  2. In a blender combine the spinach, peas, yogurt, oil, salt, garlic, onion and optional ingredients if desired.
  3. Blend on high until smooth, scraping sides as necessary.
  4. Adjust seasoning to taste.
  5. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator up to one week.
Notes
  1. This dressing works well on salads, as a veggie dip, on pasta or for chicken nuggets.
  2. This recipe makes one cup of dressing and is easily doubled or tripled to serve at a picnic.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/
I am working with Stonyfield Yogurt and Taylor Farms for this post. I have been compensated for my time but all opinions expressed are my own.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!

Simple Steps Towards Mom Self-Care plus a Quick Vegetable Dip Recipe

Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!

I’ve been mom-wired for as long as I can remember. I wanted to play with dolls all day every day from the time I was very little. I dreamed about nursing babies instead of being a princess. I loved to make food for my siblings and their friends and would even clean up after them. I was always willing to help around the house. I would just sit in the kitchen and watch my mom bake because it fascinated me.

All Grown Up

I can’t say a whole lot has changed since then. I now have three kids of my own. I still love to cook for them and take care of them. It’s fun to dress them in cute clothes and do fun activities with them.

My writing is much the same. It focuses on feeding kids nourishing food and working through picky eating and allergies. All of my recipes have to be kid-approved. I even wrote two books about feeding kids (check them out here)!

Where’s Mom?

You may have noticed that one thing has been left out of all of this…myself. Yes, I am just like so many other moms. I put myself at the bottom of my to-do list.

As I write this post I’m starting day seven of my husband being out of town. With a house and farm to care for, three kids to feed and tend to, lots of activities and home schooling I bet you can imagine how much time is left to think about myself (next to none).Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!

Mom Life Rocks!

I don’t say any of this to take pity on myself. It’s actually quite the opposite! I love my life. I wouldn’t change it for the world. But sometimes (ok, almost all the time) I forget that mom needs care too.

Over the last few months I have finally made it my goal to really focus on my health and making nourishing food a priority (i.e. sardines, liver and spinach for breakfast!!). It has been amazing to see my health continue to improve (even after 2 1/2 years of breastfeeding on a very restricted diet that left me worn out and depleted). I actually feel better now than I ever have. It’s a good thing since my life requires a lot of energy!

Body Shape Roller Coaster

Along with the  health changes have come changes in my body shape. For a while now I’ve been in a constant state of exhaustion and adrenal fatigue. This leads to skinny legs and booty with weight in the belly. Plus you lose muscle. For this once fit and active woman it was strange…but eventually became my normal. My husband and I even joked that I seemed to loose more booty and gain more belly with each child (now I know that is from being so run down)!

But as my health has been reversing back to balanced hormones and fully rested my weight is shifting back to the places it should be. I have a figure again! And now my clothes don’t fit (especially pants!).Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!

What’s the Problem?

Yet one thing I still never do for myself is buy new clothes. Although it sounds trivial, when you’re wearing old yoga pants and ten year old t-shirts with holes in the armpits every day, it really doesn’t make you feel so great about how you look. It impacts your self esteem. And your kids notice. But it’s about all I have that fits.

You can imagine my excitement when I had the opportunity to partner with Stonyfield Yogurt and prAna again. I’ve worked with them in the past to help me figure out my style and learn to embrace bold. This time I combined both my love of simplicity and my need for bold colors with this royal blue dress. It fits perfectly with prAna’s celebration of #TheWholeYou. This dress is ALL me.

From the moment I pulled it out of the box I knew it would be one of my favorite pieces of clothing. Sometimes I get caught up in budgets and kids’ needs and forget that I have needs to. I am always willing to go without. I forget that a few simple pieces of clothing that actually fit and make me feel good can make a world of difference in my attitude and my confidence.Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!

It’s Your Turn!

I want to encourage you to do something today to take care of yourself. Whether it be taking a walk alone, meeting a friend for coffee and having uninterrupted adult conversations, finishing that book that’s been half read for months, taking a yoga class, going on a date with your spouse or buying a new outfit that really makes you feel good.

Moms often forget that they have needs too. I don’t know about you, but I need a reminder once in a while (or maybe all the time) to not always put myself last. A happy, healthy mom is better able to care for her family and help create a happy, healthy home.Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!

Need some inspiration to get you started?

I’ve got TWO ways to take mom off the bottom of the to-do list today.

First, check out prAna and buy yourself something nice. Seriously, their clothes are AMAZING. So comfortable and good quality. If you’re like me that is so important since I don’t buy new clothes often. It has to last. 

PrAna is offering my readers 15% off using coupon code WHOLES17JTB through the end of May. I might just have to order a few more things myself since none of my clothes fit anymore!Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!

Second I’ve got a yummy treat for you (though you can share if you want – my kids sure love it…there I go again, handing over my food to my kids). I LOVE vegetables. I always have. But I like raw veggies even more with dip. You can make this super simple dip in about sixty seconds. Jazz up your veggies with something delicious and do your body a favor with nourishing foods. It’s a win-win.

All those great vitamins in vegetables need fat for absorption. So Stonyfield full fat Greek yogurt makes the perfect base. Add some seasoning and you’ve got a great snack or addition to your lunch.Do you make mom self-care a priority or do you put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list? Here are simple steps to make mom matter!

60 Second Veggie Dip
Serves 4
A quick and nutritious veggie dip using Greek yogurt.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup Stonyfield whole milk Greek yogurt
  2. 1/8 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  3. 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  4. 1/4 tsp. onion salt
  5. 3/4 tsp. dried dill weed
  6. (optional: 1/2 tsp. desiccated liver)
  7. (optional: 1/4 tsp. turmeric)
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the ingredients. Add more garlic or onion if desired.
  2. Store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Notes
  1. You can substitute sour cream for the yogurt
  2. This is great as a vegetable dip, chip dip or topping for tacos or nachos.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

What are you doing today for some mom self-care? I’d love to hear how you make time for yourself! I have a lot to learn.

Don’t forget that Mother’s Day is in a few days…any mom would love some prAna clothing (hint, hint)! Use the coupon code WHOLES17JTB for 15% off!!

I am working with Stonyfield Yogurt and prAna on this post. I have been compensated for my time commitment but all opinions are my own.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Looking for a delicious jelly that is naturally free of pectin? This is it! Red plum raspberry jelly is the perfect fruit combination for your morning toast, mixed into yogurt or spread on your pancakes.

Red Plum Raspberry Jelly {No Added Pectin!}

Looking for a delicious jelly that is naturally free of pectin? This is it! Red plum raspberry jelly is the perfect fruit combination for your morning toast, mixed into yogurt or spread on your pancakes.

Looking for a delicious jelly that is naturally free of pectin? This is it! Red plum raspberry jelly is the perfect fruit combination for your morning toast, mixed into yogurt or spread on your pancakes.I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…I’m not very good at making jams and jellies. Even when I use the packs of pectin!

I have switched over to using gelatin to create my strawberry freezer jam, cherry jam, grape jelly and five minute peach jam. They turned out beautifully!

But I recently teamed up with Ball Brand to try one of their recipes. I had the great pleasure of perusing The All New Ball Book Of Canning And Preserving. It’s like a canner’s dream.

The pictures are gorgeous. And the recipes all sound so delicious. I wish I had time to try them all!

But I had to just pick one to try and share with you.

Looking for a delicious jelly that is naturally free of pectin? This is it! Red plum raspberry jelly is the perfect fruit combination for your morning toast, mixed into yogurt or spread on your pancakes.

Trying My Hand At Jelly Again

With our allergies I don’t use pectin. Since I can’t be certain of the source it’s too risky. I know a lot of pectin is made from apples. And my two youngest are allergic to apples.

So instead of modifying a recipe I went for one that didn’t even need pectin. Red plum raspberry jelly sounded like the perfect combination of fruit flavors. And it is!

Neither fruit over powers the other.

There is no doubt that red plum raspberry jelly tastes good. You can use it for your  morning eggs and toast or mixed into some plain yogurt. We like it on pancakes.

Looking for a delicious jelly that is naturally free of pectin? This is it! Red plum raspberry jelly is the perfect fruit combination for your morning toast, mixed into yogurt or spread on your pancakes.

The Outcome

The real question, though, is did I manage to make good jelly without using gelatin?

Ummmm, no.

I read the instructions on how to look for the gelling point. I used a thermometer to monitor the temperature (got it to 220 just like it said).

But the timing worked out that it was right around the gelling point when I was trying to get my toddler down for a nap. And of course this was the one day where she was fighting sleep. In fact, instead of taking 3-10 minutes to get her to sleep it took over an hour and a half (including a dirty diaper change)! Maybe it was all those raspberries she ate!

Looking for a delicious jelly that is naturally free of pectin? This is it! Red plum raspberry jelly is the perfect fruit combination for your morning toast, mixed into yogurt or spread on your pancakes.

So I kept bouncing back and forth between checking the jelly and checking the toddler. And at one point I just said I have to get it done and said a prayer. Well, it wasn’t gelled.

My Big Mistake

And now that I am re-reading the directions I see that it says to stir constantly…oops. Not easy when trying to get a toddler to nap. I think all of the pectin came to the top when I wasn’t stirring…there was a sticky, pink foam. Oops.

Note – keep stirring while it boils!!

All is not lost, though. We now have sweet red plum raspberry syrup! I can’t wait to use it on our pancakes this week (every Friday we have breakfast for dinner…pancakes is on the menu).

I might also try cooking it down a bit or adding a little gelatin when I open a jar. Just to see what happens.

It’s Your Turn

In spite of my inability to make jams and jellies I am sharing this delicious recipe with you today. I bet you’ll have better luck. Maybe you can teach me a thing or two about gel! My motto moving forward is going to be “Follow the directions and keep stirring.”

I hope to try this recipe again and actually cook it the right way. I REALLY want to try red plum raspberry jelly on bread (freshly baked sourdough would heavenly).

How about you? Are you a pro at making jams and jellies? Or are you jelly challenged like me?

I’d love to hear how it goes if you try red plum raspberry jelly.

But there’s more! Keep reading.
Looking for a delicious jelly that is naturally free of pectin? This is it! Red plum raspberry jelly is the perfect fruit combination for your morning toast, mixed into yogurt or spread on your pancakes.

Red Plum Raspberry Jelly
Yields 4
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Ingredients
  1. 2 lbs. firm, ripe red plums, halved
  2. 1 cup water
  3. 4 cups raspberries
  4. 3 cups cane sugar
  5. cheesecloth
Instructions
  1. Pit plums, reserving pits. Chop plums and place in a 6 qt. stainless steel or enameled Dutch oven. Lightly crush the plum with a potato masher.
  2. Stir in the water and reserved pits. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer 10 minutes.
  3. Add raspberries, crushing with a potato masher. Return to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes.
  4. Line a large, fine wire mesh strainer with 3 layers of dampened cheesecloth. Place the strainer over a large bowl.
  5. Pour the plum mixture into the strainer (do not press down). Cover and let stand 3 hours or until collected juice measures 3 1/2 cups and mixture no longer drips.
  6. Wash and dry Dutch oven.
  7. Pour the juice into the Dutch oven. Stir in the sugar and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil, stirring constantly, to gelling point.
  8. Ladle hot jelly into a hot jar, leaving 1/4-inch headspace.
  9. Wipe jar rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band and adjust to fingertip tight.
  10. Place jar in boiling water canner. Repeat until all jars are filled.
  11. Process jars 10 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Turn off heat, remove lid and let jars stand 5 minutes.
  12. Remove jars from canner and cool.
Notes
  1. Tip - plum pits are super high in pectin, so simmering them with the fruit really helps give this jelly its velvety smooth set.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

Looking for a delicious jelly that is naturally free of pectin? This is it! Red plum raspberry jelly is the perfect fruit combination for your morning toast, mixed into yogurt or spread on your pancakes.Can It Forward

Don’t forget to “Can It Forward” with Ball Brand. On July 22, 2016 they are hosting a Can-It-Forward day live on Facebook. You’ll see demos (I think I need to tune in for one on jelly). Plus Ball Brand will be donating to a local charity. The more engagement they receive the more they donate!

Here’s how you can participate.

  • Pledge to can-it-forward by signing up via the pledge page and share with friends.
  • Tune in on July 22nd to watch canning demonstrations via Facebook Live from 10:00AM – 3:30PM ET. Each hour, viewers will have the chance to win a giveaway prize!
  • If you engage with any of the Facebook Live recipe videos, a donation will be made to charity.
  • You can ask Jarden Home Brands canning experts any preserving or home canning questions via Twitter with the hashtag #canitforward from 10AM – 5PM ET on July 22nd. Consumers can also share their own #canitforward creations with the brand on Pinterest and Instagram.

More For You

Ball Brand would also like to give one of my lucky readers coupons for canning supplies and a copy of The All New Ball Book Of Canning And Preserving! Enter below for your chance to win.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Does red plum raspberry jelly sound like a delicious combination? What is your favorite jelly flavor?

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

No more boring fruit. This simple creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing transforms any combination of fruit into a special side dish.

Creamy Orange Poppy Seed Salad Dressing

Nothing says spring like a fresh fruit salad. Top it with this creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing for a treat the whole family will love.

No more boring fruit. This simple creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing transforms any combination of fruit into a special side dish.

It’s no secret. I LOVE salad. I could (and sometimes do) eat it every day (I’ll be sharing my secret super food dressing soon!).

But my family…not so much. For my husband a “big” salad is about ten pieces of lettuce. So when I was challenged by Stonyfield and The Cookful to create a new salad dressing it took some real thinking. What could I make that my family would actually like?

No more boring fruit. This simple creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing transforms any combination of fruit into a special side dish.

Skip the lettuce.

Instead of going the traditional lettuce salad route I opted to create a fun fruit salad! Use any fresh fruit you have on hand (especially what’s in season!). Add a burst of flavor with Stonyfield vanilla Greek yogurt (now available in full fat!!), freshly squeezed orange juice and poppy seeds.

I used what we had on hand in the house – Fat Free Vanilla Greek Yogurt. You could also use whole milk yogurt combined with a little maple syrup. But the Greek yogurt really adds a nice thickness.

This creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing is so easy to make. My big kids can make it by themselves (they are learning to do so much from The Kids Cook Real Food eCourse!!).

No more boring fruit. This simple creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing transforms any combination of fruit into a special side dish.

Great for oral sensitivities.

My oldest has a very sensitive mouth. Any hint of tartness or tough skin in her fruit and she won’t eat it. One fruit she usually does not like is grapes. She makes some pretty good pucker faces when she tries them.

But the other day all I had in the house was a bowl of grapes. I gave her a dish topped with creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing. Not a single complaint! She licked the bowl clean. It’s that good.

No more boring fruit. This simple creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing transforms any combination of fruit into a special side dish.

Spruce up your salad.

If you like sweet salad dressings (like me!) you could even use this on a lettuce salad. Add some crispy pecans, dried cherries and feta cheese. Delicious!

Looking for some other great salad dressing recipes? The Cookful has plenty to choose from . I think the No Egg Caesar Dressing would be great.

Ready to add some extra flavor to your fruit salad?

Try this super easy creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing. No more boring fruit.

No more boring fruit. This simple creamy orange poppy seed salad dressing transforms any combination of fruit into a special side dish.

Creamy Orange Poppy Seed Salad Dressing
A creamy fruit salad dressing with a pop of orange flavor.
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup Stonyfield vanilla Greek yogurt (fat free or full fat)
  2. juice of 1/2 - 1 orange (depends how strong you want the orange flavor)
  3. 1/2 tsp. poppy seeds
  4. pinch unrefined sea salt
Instructions
  1. Mix all of the ingredients.
  2. Chill for 10 minutes.
  3. Serve over fruit as a salad, on the side as a dip or on a lettuce salad.
  4. Store in the refrigerator for up to 10 days.
Notes
  1. This makes enough for a large fruit salad.
  2. You can replace the vanilla yogurt with plain yogurt and 1 Tbsp. honey or maple syrup.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

Have you heard of The Cookful?

It’s a great new site that really digs deep into specific food topics. They came up with some great salad dressing recipes!

I am working with Stonyfield and The Cookful on this post. I have been compensated for my time commitment, but I have not been paid to post positive reviews. Opinions are my own.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Pistachio Pea Pesto | Just Take A Bite

Pistachio Pea Pesto

With the return of spring comes color and new life. Add some of both to your meal with this bright and flavorful pistachio pea pesto.

Pistachio Pea Pesto | Just Take A Bite

If there is an easy way to get your kids to eat vegetables it is in a sauce. Put the sauce on pasta or pizza. Instant hit!

This pistachio pea pesto is no exception. Parents love the loads of vegetables and healthy fat from nuts. Kids love the taste and color.

Easy “peasy.”

The really great thing about this pesto is how easy it is to make. Only six ingredients (and the cheese is even optional). Toss them all in the blender and it’s done. No cooking. Just puree and serve. It is easy enough for kids to make themselves!

Mix pistachio pea pesto with your favorite variety of noodles for an easy weeknight meal that can even be made gluten or grain free. Add some extra peas and nuts into the pasta for texture and nutrition. Leftover cooked chicken also makes a great addition for a complete meal.

But the possibilities don’t end there. Make pizza night a little more special with pesto pizza. Make or buy your favorite pizza crust. Top it with pistachio pea pesto and some fresh mozzarella. Bake and serve.

Pistachio Pea Pesto | Just Take A Bite

Whether you are vegetarian or just looking to save a little money on your grocery bill either of these would make a great meatless meal.

The possibilities are endless! Head over to Super Healthy Kids where I’m sharing this easy pistachio pea pesto recipe and more fun ways to use it.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Pectin Free Concord Grape Jelly | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Pectin Free Concord Grape Jelly

Wondering what to do with your homemade grape juice? Make grape jelly of course! It is a classic kid favorite that is easy to make and perfect for your pb&j!

Pectin Free Concord Grape Jelly | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Growing up we ate one flavor of jelly.

Grape.

That’s it.

At home. Grape. In a restaurant. Grape. On toast. Grape. On a sandwich. Grape.

That was really all we knew and all we wanted.

No jelly here.

Want to know something? I have never bought grape jelly for my kids. Most grape jellies are filled with high fructose corn syrup. Not to mention the texture kind of grosses me out now.

But homemade grape jelly – that is a whole different story. Especially when it comes from juice you made yourself!

Pectin Free Concord Grape Jelly | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

No pectin. No canning.

The unique thing about my grape jelly is that I skip the pectin and the canning.

Most pectin contains dextrose. That’s just sugar, right? Well, yes, sort of.

But it usually comes from corn. My son is allergic to corn. So I don’t use pectin.

Instead I use gelatin and then freeze the jelly. That turns this into such a simple task. It takes about five minutes to make a whole batch of jelly.

This was my own experiment with creating an easy and allergen friendly grape jelly.

Pectin Free Concord Grape Jelly | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

No complaints.

The consensus from my family? Great! Everyone loves it. Even the adults that grew up with more traditional jelly (both homemade and store bought).

My kids rave about it and keep asking for it on their bread.

We have been enjoying it on toast and on sunbutter and jelly sandwiches. I personally love it on sourdough bread. The contrast between the sour and sweet is delicious.

Pectin Free Concord Grape Jelly | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

No fears.

Are you intimidated by the idea of making your own grape jelly? Set those fears aside. This pectin free concord grape jelly is so easy!

Use your homemade grape juice or quality organic grape juice. Add some grass-fed gelatin and you’re minutes away from homemade grape jelly.

Your kids will love it, and you’ll feel good about what they’re eating. No more high fructose corn syrup, dextrose and citric acid for breakfast. Just whole, simple ingredients.

Once you get the freezer stocked with grape jelly grab some blueberry juice to make blueberry jelly! It’s another great addition to your morning eggs and toast.

Pectin Free Concord Grape Jelly | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Pectin Free Concord Grape Jelly
Yields 7
Homemade grape jelly that is free of pectin and high fructose corn syrup.
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Ingredients
  1. 4 cups unsweetened concord grape juice
  2. 3 cups organic cane sugar
  3. 6 1/2 tsp. grass-fed gelatin
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan combine the juice and sugar. Whisk.
  2. Slowly pour in the gelatin and whisk.
  3. Let sit one minute.
  4. Turn on heat to medium/low.
  5. Slowly whisk until the mixture is warm and the sugar and gelatin are dissolved, about 5 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat.
  7. Fill half pint glass jars, leaving 1 inch of head space.
  8. Put a lid on the jars and refrigerate until fully gelled, at least 8 hours.
  9. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks or in the freezer for up to 1 year.
Notes
  1. You may need to adjust the sweetness depending on the sweetness of the juice and your taste.
  2. You can increase the gelatin to 8 Tbsp. and pour the whole batch into molds or a glass pan to make grape gummies.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

This post is linked to Savoring Saturdays.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard Dressing

Herb roasted vegetables with creamy honey mustard dressing put a new spin on salad.  They make the perfect side dish all year long.

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

I am partnering with Wayfair and Stonyfield for this post. I have been compensated for my time commitment to use these products. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.

I love a fresh salad in the summer. To be honest I could eat a salad for breakfast, lunch and dinner all summer long!

But I do have a family to cook for. And I don’t have any big salad fans.

That means it’s time to put a new spin on salad.

My kids LOVE roasted vegetables. They often eat all of their vegetables first when I roast them.

So when challenged by Stonyfield and Wayfair to create a new summer salad I went with something I knew my kids would enjoy.

Herb roasted vegetables with creamy honey mustard is a hearty summer salad everyone will love.

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

The vegetables.

Most of the time I roast cauliflower, Brussels sprouts or cabbage. If you think those are vegetables your kids don’t like try them roasted. You might be surprised!

During the summer there are plenty of other fresh vegetables to add to the mix, like zucchini, peppers and beans.

I used a combination of year round staples and fresh summer vegetables to create a colorful blend.

Add lots of extra virgin olive oil, unrefined sea salt and some fresh or dried herbs for a pop of flavor.

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

The dressing.

What’s a salad without dressing? To top this beautiful blend I put a creamy spin on my favorite honey mustard by adding whole milk Stonyfield yogurt.

The bright yellow dressing really pops against the rainbow of vegetables. And it adds a burst of flavor. Roasted vegetables with creamy honey mustard will be the center of attention at your dinner table.

Creamy honey mustard also makes a great veggie dip.

My kids may not be huge salad fans, but they do love veggies and dip! So another way to eat salad in the summer is to skip the lettuce and go straight for fresh vegetables with creamy honey mustard.

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

The presentation.

Herb roasted vegetables with creamy honey mustard is a great salad for entertaining. All of the prep work is done in advance so you can visit with your guests.

But you can’t serve a beautiful salad without the proper dishes. That’s where Wayfair comes in.

Have you checked out their assortment of salad bowls and kitchen gadgets? There is so much to choose from!

My favorite color is blue and I like simple. So of course I picked a stunning cobalt blue salad bowl. I love how it is wide and shallow – perfect for presenting a colorful salad. You can see the whole assortment of vegetables.

I have been searching for a salad dressing container for some time now. I usually just use a small mason jar. But for serving to guests that is not so convenient. This cruet is just what I’ve been looking for. (Plus I learned a new word…cruet). These will come in so handy when I serve salads at parties and family gatherings.

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

My favorite product from Wayfair is this set of condiment cups. They are perfect for dipping veggies in dressing. They are also great for holding after school snacks. They come in four fun colors so each kid can pick what color they like. Did you know that can make vegetables taste better? It can.

Whether you need a fancy salad to serve to guests or you’re just trying to get your kids to eat more veggies, herb roasted vegetables with creamy honey mustard work well.

Let your kids help chop all of the vegetables and make the simple dressing. Then use some fun, festive serveware from Wayfair to brighten up the table.

What is your favorite summer salad? How do you dress it up?

Let Stonyfield and Wayfair spruce up your next salad.

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Herb Roasted Vegetables with Creamy Honey Mustard Dressing
Serves 6
Bright vegetables seasoned with herbs and drizzled with a creamy honey mustard dressing.
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Vegetables
  1. 10 cups variety of vegetables (cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, carrots, onions, peppers, zucchini, cabbage, beets, parsnips, rutabaga)
  2. 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  3. 2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  4. 1 tsp. dried basil
  5. 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
  6. 1 tsp. dried dillweed
Dressing
  1. 1/2 cup plain, whole milk yogurt
  2. 1/2 cup honey
  3. 1/4 cup mustard
  4. 1/4 tsp. unrefined sea salt
Vegetables
  1. Cut the vegetables into uniform chunks.
  2. Heat oven to 375*F.
  3. Place vegetables on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  4. Pour olive oil over vegetables and season with salt and herbs.
  5. Toss to coat.
  6. Bake for about 1 hour, until vegetables are tender and browned.
Dressing
  1. Combine all of the ingredients and mix well.
  2. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. Serve vegetables warm, drizzled with honey mustard.
Notes
  1. The dressing can be made in advance.
  2. The dressing will last about 2 weeks in the refrigerator.
  3. The dressing can be used as a veggie dip.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Five Minute Peach Jam | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Five Minute Peach Jam

Peach jam in five minutes? Yes! And only three ingredients. Simple, healthy and bursting with flavor. Five minute peach jam is a great way to capture summer in a jar.

Five Minute Peach Jam | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Growing up I ate one thing on my toast – grape jelly. Always.

Now that I’m older and cook for myself and my family I like to have a lot more variety. So I make strawberry jam, cherry jam and raspberry jam.

This year I tried peach jam. Wow! It’s like summer in a jar.

Chop. Mix. Simmer.

For real – that is all there is to it. Cut up fresh peaches, add sweetener and grass-fed gelatin. Simmer about five minutes.

Fresh peach jam awaits.

You can even make peach jam without any sweetener if your peaches are sweet enough. Else a couple tablespoons of sweetener really kicks up the flavor.

Five Minute Peach Jam | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Let the kids help.

This is a great project for getting your kids in the kitchen. Peal and pit the peaches and let your child cut them into small chunks. A dull knife is just fine for chopping peaches.

Then let them measure the sugar and gelatin.

Older kids can help with the cooking as well. If you are making a pureed jam this is a great way to teach older kids how to use an immersion blender.

Five Minute Peach Jam | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Spread it on. Stir it in.

Once the jam has chilled for a few hours it will be gelled enough to serve. Spread it on homemade gluten free bread, sourdough bread or your favorite muffin. My kids couldn’t get enough of this peach jam on freshly baked bread alongside a big bowl of soup.

Another great way to use peach jam is mixed into plain, whole milk yogurt. It makes instant peach yogurt without any thickeners, gums or added flavorings.

Spruce up your oatmeal by stirring in peach jam. Top with some crispy pecans and breakfast is served.

Five Minute Peach Jam | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Stock the freezer.

This recipe is for a small batch to eat fresh. You can easily triple it (or more!) and freeze the jam. Then you can enjoy it all year long.

Peach jam in the middle of winter is a real treat! Not to mention it’s very cost-effective. One jar of homemade jam costs about $1.25 (give or take).

The same amount of quality store-bought peach jam would cost about $5.00.

Grab a few peaches and your kids and mix up a quick batch of five minute peach jam. Then enjoy this allergen free spread all year long to change up your breakfast.

What is your favorite type of jam or jelly?  Do you make your own?

Five Minute Peach Jam | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Five Minute Peach Jam
Yields 1
Simple and healthy, five minute peach jam is a great way to capture summer in a jar. Only three ingredients and tons of flavor.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup peaches, peeled, pitted, cut into small pieces (juice reserved)
  2. 3/4 tsp. grass-fed gelatin
  3. 1 - 3 Tbsp. organic cane sugar or honey
Instructions
  1. Add peaches and juice to a small saucepan.
  2. Add the gelatin and stir. Let sit 1 minute.
  3. Add the sugar.
  4. Bring to very low simmer and let cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  5. Mash or puree if desired.
  6. Pour into a half pint jar.
  7. Chill until gelled.
  8. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks or in the freezer for up to 1 year.
Notes
  1. An easy way to reserve the peach juice is to cut the peach directly over the pan and let the juice drip down while you cut.
  2. You can leave out the sweetener to make this sugar free jam.
  3. This makes one half pint of jam. Multiply the recipe by how many jars you want to make.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Cherry Mustard Vinaigrette | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Cherry Mustard Vinaigrette

Spruce up your summer salad with this sweet and tangy cherry mustard vinaigrette.  It is ready in minutes and will turn any kid into a salad lover.Cherry Mustard Vinaigrette | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

I am a tried and true lover of all things honey mustard.  It is my go-to dressing for salads.  We use it for chicken nuggets.  I’d eat it on just about anything.

I have recipes for many different variations on honey mustard.

But with cherry season in full swing I decided to add a twist to my favorite.

I created cherry mustard vinaigrette.  It has sweetness from honey and cherries, tang from mustard and a little zing from apple cider vinegar.Cherry Mustard Vinaigrette | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Wishing your kids would eat salad?

Cherry mustard vinaigrette is very kid friendly.  My oldest could not get enough of it.  She loves using it on her salads (especially when she’s using lettuce from her own garden!).

If your kids won’t touch lettuce (like my four year old), try using this as a dip for fresh summer vegetables like snap peas and cucumbers.  Either way it’s a win!

If you don’t like the vinegar flavor you can cut back on the apple cider vinegar and increase the honey.  Or you could swap mayo for vinegar to make it a creamy dressing or dip.

Cherry mustard vinaigrette is also very allergen friendly.

No need to worry about dairy, coconut, eggs, nuts, grains, etc.  Extra virgin olive oil works well for this dressing.  Alternately you could use avocado oil.

Skip the store bought salad dressings with rancid vegetable oils (like canola), thickeners (like xanthan gum and guar gum) and artificial flavors and sweeteners.  It only takes a few minutes to make a unique, healthy and delicious dressing at home.

I like to add all of my dressing ingredients to a small mason jar, put a lid on and shake.  Though I wouldn’t mind some fun salad dressing bottles (note for future gift lists!).Cherry Mustard Vinaigrette | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

This is a fun project for small children…

and keeps them busy while you do other food prep.  They can shake and shake until they get sick of it.

If you don’t have cherry juice on hand use some of those fresh cherries and squeeze the juice out.  Or you can use the whole cherry and blend a handful to use in place of the juice.

I know not everyone loves cherries as much as I do.  So if they are just not your thing you can use another great mid-summer fruit – blueberries!  Cherry mustard vinaigrette turns into blueberry mustard vinaigrette with one simple swap.

In fact, you can use just about any of your favorite summer fruits to put a spin on this dressing.  Peaches and plums would make great dressings as well.

Are you getting hungry for a big summer salad yet?

I know I am!  Time for a great summer meal using fresh produce and nourishing homemade salad dressing.  Cherry mustard vinaigrette is perfect for your summer salads.Cherry Mustard Vinaigrette | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Cherry Mustard Vinaigrette
Serves 8
A light and fruity summer salad dressing.
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Ingredients
  1. 1/4 cup black cherry juice
  2. 2 1/2 Tbsp. honey
  3. 1 1/2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil (or avocado oil)
  4. 1 1/2 Tbsp. mustard
  5. 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  6. 1/4 tsp. unrefined sea salt
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl or jar.
  2. Whisk or shake until combined.
  3. Chill until ready to serve.
Notes
  1. This will stay good in the refrigerator for up to three weeks.
  2. Replace the apple cider vinegar with homemade mayonnaise for a creamy dressing.
  3. This dressing can be used as a marinade on chicken.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/


In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Sausage Seasoning For Sensitive Palates

Sausage Seasoning For Sensitive Palates | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

I don’t usually cook breakfast in the morning (except warming my daily mug of soup).  That may seem surprising for someone that gets up early and loves to be in the kitchen.

But here mornings are for easy, get it on the table quickly meals.  That means things like yogurt, homemade granola, fruit, baked goods, nuts, cheese, smoothies, gummies, hard boiled eggs and dried fruit.

Morning is my time to get work done before the kids get up.  Not to mention I have one child that often wakes up early and is ready for breakfast the moment his feet hit the floor.  So breakfast is usually something prepared the night before.

But we do LOVE all breakfast foods – pancakes, waffles, french toast, eggs, bacon and of course sausage!  Breakfast foods are some of our favorites.  So we have breakfast for dinner once a week.

My daughter has a very sensitive palate…i.e. won’t eat anything “spicy.”  That includes just about any seasoning.  It’s rare that she can eat anything in a restaurant without it burning her tongue.  If your little one is the same way check out this post on “picky eating.”  And read on to find out how we make sausage that is not spicy but has lots of flavor. 

Sausage Seasoning For Sensitive Palates | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie We often buy our sausage from a local farm.  It tastes very good and is high quality meat.  My daughter will eat a little bit of it.  But not much.

So recently we got a half pig.  Part of that included sausage.  I opted to just get plain ground pork instead of the butcher adding seasoning.  I didn’t want ten pounds of sausage that my daughter wouldn’t touch.

That meant I had to come up with my own sausage spice blend so we could still enjoy sausage on our breakfast for dinner nights or in our squash soup.

This seasoning uses common herbs and spices and is easy on the palate.  There is a bit of coconut sugar added to make sure it is well tolerated in a sensitive mouth.

You can mix it up fresh for one batch of sausage or make a large batch and have a jar of it on hand whenever you need it.  This sausage seasoning also works well for burgers and chicken.

You can even mix the seasoning into the meat, shape the sausage patties and freeze them on a tray for easy sausage any time.

There is no need to take sausage off the menu if you have a sensitive palate to cook for.  Simply make your own spice blend so everyone can enjoy delicious sausage with their favorite breakfast foods. 

Sausage Seasoning For Sensitive Palates | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Sausage Seasoning For Sensitive Palates
A very mild, yet flavorful seasoning for homemade sausage.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  2. 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  3. 1/2 tsp. basil
  4. 1/2 tsp. celery salt
  5. 1 tsp. dill weed
  6. 1/2 tsp. mustard powder
  7. 3 tsp. coconut sugar
  8. 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the ingredients.
  2. Add to one pound of ground meat (pork, turkey or chicken).
  3. Use immediately or cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  4. Form patties and cook in coconut oil, lard or tallow in a skillet.
Notes
  1. The seasoning mix can be prepared in advance. It can also be made in large batches and used as needed.
  2. You can add an egg to the meat and seasoning mixture as a binder.
  3. One batch totals about 7 tsp. So if you make a larger batch you can use 7 tsp. of it per pound of meat.
  4. You can mix the meat and seasoning and form patties in advance. Simply place them on a parchment lined baking sheet, freeze them and then store them in a sealed container. Thaw as many patties as you need at a time.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.