Quick Halloween Treats

HALLOWEEN is here and my dear friend Caryn (aka Sassy Mama) and I whipped up some quick last minute treats on Oklahoma City News9!  Here are two ideas your spooks are sure to scream about!
And of course, we had to do it in costume as...
First up, how about some
Caramel Apple Nachos
I love caramel apples but if you're feeding a crowd it would take an insane amount of time to make. We spread sliced apples on a platter and added all the ooey-gooey ingredients that make caramel apples delicious.  I also love that I can have portion control...just a few slices to satisfy my sweet tooth!  Check out just how quick we put them together (and some silliness!):

  • 2 packages pre-sliced apples (I got mine at Sam's Club)
  • 1 jar caramel ice cream topping
  • 1 package Oreo cookies, crushed
  • 1 package M&M's
  • gummy worms
  • mini marshmallows
  • any other toppings you want!
  1. Place apples on a large platter. Drizzle with ice cream topping then top with crushed cookies and candies. Serve!
Next, I made up some cute Black Cat Crunch labels that you can print and attach to sandwich bags for super cute spooky snack mix!  Watch Caryn and I whip it up HERE!
Click HERE to download/print the snack labels.  
GO HERE for Caryn's Meow Mix recipe

You can watch Caryn weekly on Oklahoma City News9 for fun recipe ideas or follow her food blog adventures HERE.


Tru Mooooooo for Halloween!

In October, all my ghouls and goblins are on the prowl for treats!  I love having fun goodies at Halloween but I always find myself looking for ways to have spooky treats that's a little more healthy.  So, imagine how excited I was when I spottted
Limited Edition Halloween TruMoo Chocolate Milk and  
TruMoo Limited Edition Vanilla Milk!
 My kids loooove TruMoo and got really excited about the fun Halloween packaging...are those fangs I see?
 (I love it because TruMoo contains 35% less total sugar than the leading chocolate milk, contains no high fructose corn syrup, and is a great quality milk...but don't tell my little Vampire that.)
I think TruMoo is a great treat on it's own but if you want to spook it up a little bit more, try out a Spooky Smoothie:
We are definitely going to use TruMoo for our annual
Spooky Cereal Buffet

This spooky buffet also a great idea for a school class party!!
Also, now through October 31, you can win a Haunted Hollywood Vacation from TruMoo

Now through October 31st, you can find a unique code located on the cap sticker of specially marked Limited Edition TruMoo Halloween Vanilla (tinted orange) and Chocolate milks. These codes can be entered online at www.TruMoo.com for a chance to win a Haunted Hollywood Vacation trip! Also, when you enter the code, you will have the option to receive $2 off any Goosebumps DVD. 

To enter your code:
1. Go to the TruMoo website at www.TruMoo.com
2. Once you are on the site, click on the "Enter Now" button on the home screen
3. You will then be directed to the Sweepstakes page where you can enter your code!

Disclosure: I was given information and was compensated by TruMoo for this post.  All opinions, as always, are my own.


Tailgate Bonanza with Pork and Kroger!

There's not much I love more than a great Tailgate Party!  Our friends and family are quite divided fans but regardless of what team we cheer for, everyone loves great food and great company on Game Day!  I wish there was a way every one of you could come on over to try some of the amazing things we've cooked up with Pork
 Since you all can't be here in person, to celebrate Pork and Tailgating, I’m giving away a

so you can stock up on plenty of Pork and other party supplies at Kroger!
Here's what we'll send to you:
-One portable outdoor grill
-Taylor digital thermometer
-Tailgate cooler (contains divided areas to keep your drinks and food separate, storage pockets and an attached bottle opener)
- $100 gift card to Kroger Supermarkets.
Time's up! We have a winner! 

who said..."
I tweeted
Now, back to the Paaaaaaartay!...
We started at King Soopers (our local store in the Kroger Family) to stock up on great Pork products and party supplies.
 They had everything we needed, including some Broncos gear (We're NFL Broncos Fans and NCAAF Ohio State Buckeye fans all the way!)
Now on to the menu!  The stars of the show were definitely the Marmalade Ribs

and Smoked Pork Sliders

We also whipped up a batch of our family-favorite 50 Yard Fiesta Dip

as well as some Spicy Corn Bake

Throw your favorite drinks in the cooler and bring along treats (High Altitude Chocolate Chip Cookies) and you've got one great tailgate!

BBQ Marmalade Ribs
4 lbs Pork Ribs

Rib Rub:
2 tsp coarse salt
2 tsp paprika
1 T garlic powder
½ tsp red pepper flakes
¼ tsp ground black pepper

BBQ Marmalade Sauce:
3 C your favorite BBQ sauce (we love Sweet Baby Ray)
2 T honey
¼ C. orange marmalade 
combine all sauce ingredients in a medium bowl and stir well.
To prepare Ribs in either an oven or smoker:
Conventional Oven:  Preheat to 300 degrees F.  Coat ribs with rub mixture.  Wrap ribs in aluminum foil and place on baking sheet.  Bake for 2 ½ hours.  Remove from oven, coat ribs generously with BBQ Marmalade.  At this point, I like to put the ribs in the fridge (can make ahead up to 24 hours) then when it’s Tailgate time, put them on a hot grill for 2-3 minutes each side to heat them up and sear the sauce. 

Smoker: If you have a smoker, here’s our favorite way to cook these ribs.  Set smoker to 225 F.
Coat ribs with rub mixture, place in smoker for 3 hours.  Remove ribs, coat with a thin coating of BBQ Marmalade and wrap in aluminum foil.  Continue smoking for 2 hours.  Remove ribs, coat generously with sauce and smoke for 1 additional hour.

Smoked Pork Sliders
We created a "Sliders Buffet" so everyone could make their own creations!  This is great for a crowd, especially if you have kids in the mix.

Pork Loin, around 3 lbs.
coarse Kosher Salt
liquid smoke (in the spice aisle)
24 King's Hawaiian Rolls or other small rolls
3 cups your favorite BBQ Sauce
Honey Mustard
Creamy Horseradish
Butter Pickle Slices
Sliced Olives
Cole Slaw (homemade or storebought)
Sliced Provelone Cheese

Directions:Preheat oven to 225 degrees. Lay out two large sheets of aluminum foil. Lay two large sheets of plastic wrap on top of foil. Placepork loin on the plastic wrap (this keeps the moisture in! It's an amazing slow-roasting secret!:)). Sprinkle generously with kosher salt and liquid smoke, rub all over pork loin. Wrap up plastic wrap tightly around pork loin and then wrap with aluminum foil. Place in large roasting pan. Repeat with other loin half. Bake at 225 degrees 7-10 hrs. until done.  Remove from oven and shred pork.  At this point you can refrigerate or freeze for later use.  To make sandwiches, place Pulled Pork in a slow cooker.  Add BBQ Sauce and heat on low until pork is warm.  Place remaining ingredients in seperate bowls along with a basket of rolls.  Let guests place desired amount of pork on a roll then add toppings to create their own smoked pork creations!

Need More Tailgate Inspiration?  Check out the Tailgating with Pork and Kroger Pinterest board!  You can even repin your favorites for a chance to win a $250 Gift Card!

Disclaimer: I am being compensated by the National Pork Board and Kroger for this recipe and tailgate promotion.


Hawaiian Stuffed Pork Loin

You know what time it is, right? FOOTBALL SEASON! Gourmet Dad is a major college football fan but whether or not you like football I can't think of anything more enjoyable than a tailgate party with friends! I especially love to think outside the "burgers and dogs" for tailgates and serve up food that everyone really enjoy. One of my favorites is this Hawaiian Stuffed Pork Loin. You can even make it ahead of time and freeze so you have zero work to do on Game Day! 

Score big at your next tailgating party with Kroger!  To celebrate the tailgating season, Kroger Grocery Stores are offering discounts on all your favorite cuts of Pork.  Visit your local Kroger and check out Kroger.com to view special offers exclusive to your area.  I picked up this lovely pork loin at my store for this recipe.

Hawaiian Stuffed Pork Loin
Large Pork Loin (around 4 lbs)
1 lb. lump crab meat
1 1/2 c. plain bread crumbs
1 jar (2 cups) Pineapple or Mango Sa

Marinade Ingredients:
6 Tbsp. soy sauce
3 Tbsp. Brown sugar
1/4 tsp. powdered ginger
1 tsp. garlic
dash red pepper flakes
dash black pepper
3 Tbsp. tomato sauce (or ketchup if you're in a pinch)
Extra salsa or fresh pineapple, optional, for garnish

Place all marinade ingredients in a gallon Ziploc Freezer bag and mix well.  Cut pork loin into 1” round slices.   

 Carefully cut through the side of each piece of pork to make a pocket, making sure not to slice all the way through (or you can just pound the pork loin flat, stuff it, then roll it up after filling). Mix crab meat, bread crumbs and salsa in a medium bowl. Stuff about 2-3 heaping tablespoons crab mixture into pork loin pocket and place in marinade bag. 

Repeat with all pork loin pieces (you can fit about 6 in a bag). Marinade in refrigerator at least 30 minutes. Grill 7-10 minutes on each side. You can also freeze them and defrost when ready to grill.

Get more great tailgating inspiration and play 
 for the chance to win a $250 Kroger gift card!  From now until October 13th, all you have to do is repin one of the recipe images on Pork’s Tailgating with Pork and Kroger board with the hashtag #TailgatingWithPork. Official rules here.
Disclaimer: I am being compensated by the National Pork Board and Kroger for this recipe and tailgate promotion.


Last Minute VDay Gift

I needed a quick and inexpensive gift for a last minute Valentines Lunch party so I designed these cute printables that go into a 5 x 7 frame.  There are 4 different designs that go in a 5x7 frame (can get them at Dollar Tree). I attached a dry erase marker to the top w/ some hot glue and ribbon and wrote something I loved about that person on it. Then, they can erase it, write their own note and pass the love along to their students, family, etc..
Here's a link to the printable fileclick here or on any image below.  Happy Valentines Day!

We also whipped up some adorable Love Struck Arrows with a free baggie topper printable, check them out here on Tablespoon!

Holiday Playlist

My grandmother hasn't been doing well...to cheer her up, I rounded up a few of my musical friends and made an album of Holiday songs fo...