Lacy Heart Pancakes: Easy Valentine’s Day breakfast recipe

You know what they say about the best way to your kids' hearts: Fancy pancakes! This easy how-to is perfect for Valentine's Day and pretty much every weekend all year long.

Treats for your sweets: Valentine’s Day recipes for all day long

Valentine’s Day isn’t what it used to be before kids. But it is full of love—more than I’ve ever known and that’s good enough for me. So, these days, instead of expecting to be taken out to a romantic dinner, I cook. Slowly. So that I can feel the love. The love that I put […]

{video} All-natural Red Velvet Pancakes for red, white & blue July 4th brunch

So, technically, these aren't red velvet pancakes as much as they are red pancakes. The important thing, though, is that they are good pancakes. Great, even, thanks to an easy trick that will turn any old pancakes into fluffy diner-style pancakes. (Watch for my secret!) Tasty, pillowy, and a pretty red hue that comes from an all natural source, these pancakes make an awesome July 4th breakfast topped with strawberries, blueberries and whipped cream. Red, white and blue pancakes for breakfast? It doesn't get more patriotic than that, people. (more after the jump)

5-Minute Chocolate Mug Cakes perfected for Valentine’s Day

This year, instead of fussing over elaborate Valentine's Day treats for the kids, I plan on taking it easy and keeping it delicious with these 5-minute chocolate mug cakes. Less time in the kitchen, more time with my boys. All three of them. If you also like the sound of whipping up warm chocolate cake in 5 -minutes after school or after dinner, this Valentine's day, check out how to make these delicious microwave chocolate mug cakes. I've perfected the recipe to yield a super moist crumb that's far tastier than most of the other microwaved chocolate cakes I've tried. This is the one, folks. Just in time for Valentine's Day. (more—plus a video!—after the jump)

Simple Valentine’s Day treats that say, “I love you!”

I say it with hugs. One likes hugs more than the other, at least the long, snuggly kind. The other one likes quick hugs. Sometimes just a quick touch is enough for him. A moment to connect and make sure that I'm still there. I am. Always will be. I say it with words. I can't keep track of the number of times I say, "I love you," everyday. Too many, probably. Especially for the big one, especially while in public. I won't stop, though—I don't really think he wants me to (yet)—but I may start whispering more. I say it with food. Mostly I think it's about my commitment to healthy, homemade meals. Because all of that—all of this—started for them, you know. But really, it's about how much I love cooking. Sometimes I see it and the big one has even said it: they taste the love. On Valentine's Day I want to say it with treats that bring together all three: warm hugs, loving words, and delicious food. These six simple Valentine's Day treats that send a clear message of love are sure to hit the spot. (more after the jump)

5 easy Valentine’s Day lunch box ideas

Valentine's Day is tomorrow: is love in the air or is that panic I smell? No need to freak out. Stop looking at Pinterest, take a deep breathe, and remind yourself that a big hug and heartfelt, "I love you to the moon and back," will do. And, of course, a little lunchbox surprise is nice, too. Thankfully, sweet lunchbox surprises are easy to come by. In fact, I've got 5 here for you. None of these ideas require much prep or fussing. They are just a fun way to get in the spirit and brighten kiddo's afternoon. (more after the jump)

Valentine’s Day Twinkies (and other homemade classic snacks)

So there's this new book and it's dangerous. Threatening, even. At least to me. See, I've got a junk food past: I was raised by an uber-healthy nutrition nut and a restauranteur who lived by scratch cooking. I rebelled with a bag of Doritos in hand and fueled my teen years—at least the time I spent away from my parents—with Taco Bell and Hostess. One look through my recipes and it's clear that my parents made their mark. In many ways, I cook like them now, but it took a while for me to get there. To get here. While I have no real desire to eat junk food anymore (okay, except Oreos; I will always want to eat Oreos), nostalgic cravings linger. Mostly ignored, until now. Classic Snacks Made From Scratch is a new cookbook by Casey Barber, a freelance food writer, recipe developer and the editor of Good. Food. Stories. A DIY fanatic, Casey became obsessed with replicating classic childhood snacks at home with (mostly) straightforward ingredients and (definitely) none of the chemical ones. You're probably wondering which childhood snacks Casey takes on in her book, but you should be asking which she doesn't take on. From Sour Patch Kids to Klondike bars, Cheetos to Tastykakes, if you bought it at a 7-Eleven when you were a teenager, it's in here. And it's so, so dangerous. In fact, I chose to test her recipe for Twinkies even though because I don't like Twinkies. (Never have.) I'm just not ready to know that I can whip up Devil Dogs whenever I want them. (more after the jump)

{recipe} Chocolate Pear and Pistachio Tart

I get it. Sometimes nothing beats a good brownie. But what do you say we bring a little glam back to Valentine's Day this year?! If you're with me, this, my loves, is for you and yours. A simple chocolate tart crust filled with sweet seasonal pears... salty pistachios and the simplest custard. Quite the threesome (ooh la la!). This dessert is as easygoing as it is sophisticated. (more after the jump)

{recipe} All-Natural Pink Milk For Your Little Sweetie

Pink milk (overloaded with sugar, fillers and artificial color) at school (where it is an option everyday) = bad news. Pink milk (homemade with three all-natural ingredients) at home (where it is a special treat) = good news. Really good news. And the perfect hue for a Valentine's Day surprise. (more after the jump)

{news} I Heart Cool Mom Picks

It's crazy that it's taken me over a week to share this with you given how excited I am (what can I say, I was lounging on a beach this time last week): I've joined the Cool Mom Picks team!! That's right mamas and papas, I'll be posting niblets of food-related coolness on Cool Mom Picks every Wednesday. And I couldn't be more delighted. Cool Mom Picks is one of my all-time favorite sites. It's chock full of finds scouted by smart ladies with savvy, good taste and serious wit. I'm sure that you already visit Cool Mom Picks and now you have yet another reason to visit or—even better—subscribe to the CMP newsletter so that you don't miss a thing. Up today, 6 Valentine's Day lunchbox ideas made with extra love. And you know me—you can count on these lunchbox treats being a healthier way of saying "I love you" than those sugary candy hearts. photo: Crush Cul De Sac

{12 Days of Yum} Chocolate Overload from Scharffen Berger + Deluxe Double-Chocolate Cookies [CLOSED]

Calling all chocolate lovers! This one from Scharffen Berger is for you. Do I need to say anything else? You chocolate geeks already know Scharffen Berger and their amazing artisan chocolates. The rest of you chocoholics just need to know that this is some of the best damn chocolate you can get your hands on, especially for baking (something I do with these products more often than I should!). Simply choosing Scarffen Berger makes your dessert better. If you can’t turn that down, I’ll meet you after the jump to tell you what’s in this amazing Chocolate Overload prize pack (and share a recipe for amazing Deluxe Double-Chocolate Cookies). If you can turn this down, well, there’s hope even for the craziest among us! (more after the jump)

How To Make Heart Shaped Eggs!

Photo: Anna The Red Is there really anything to say? This picture says it all!! I did try (for about 5 seconds) to think of a way to link the title of this post with the lyrics of "Heart Shaped Box" in honor of the 25th anniversary of Nirvana's Nevermind, but that's dumb. Now I feel stupid... and contagious. *Groan* (more after the jump)

{recipe} Homemade Magic Shell, Beyotch!

Chocolate chips + coconut oil = magic. Homemade magic shell, that is. That's right: melt the two together and you have a shelf stable chocolate sauce that hardens into a chocolate candy shell when poured over something brrrrrrrr cold. Right. Before. Your. Eyes. I love magic. (Speaking of which, was Gallagher a magician, too, or just a comedian?) --more after the jump--

{recipe} Pretty in Pink: Valentine’s Day Strawberry Frosting

Please excuse the awkwardly cropped photo. The thing is that I didn’t make these for Valentine’s Day. They were part of the Hungry Boy’s birthday celebration and I’m not quite ready to reveal the details since I’ve got a big birthday post in the works. In the meantime, though, I couldn’t resist sharing the recipe […]

{green your eats} Weekend Project! Color Your Own Valentine’s Decorator’s Sugar

Alright lovelies, here’s the straight dope: I’ve got news for you. But I also have to run. I’m cooking a family classic with the Hungry Boy’s class today. (How many of the 14 three- and four-year-olds will eat spinach pie? Place your bets. I’ll be reporting back soon!) So you’re going to have to wait […]

{recipe} On Friendship & Valentine’s Day: Mini Frozen Lemon Tarts

We are officially less than a week away from Valentine’s Day and the onslaught of recipes featuring raspberry red, strawberry pink and chocolate — the colors and flavors of love and passion — has begun. Don’t get me wrong: I’ve been participating. Just check out my directory of Valentine’s Day recipes so far! I even […]