Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Cookie Bars & GIVEAWAY!

I was provided with a Krusteaz Holiday gift pack to facilitate this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

My Christmas baking list is quite long (shortbread, gingerbread, fudge, sausage balls, and so much more!) & I have been in a cookie baking frenzy. Well, I was. Until my 7 year old had a terrible asthma flare up that has been going on for weeks now. Several doctor visits, multiple medications, and let’s not forget – NO SCHOOL. I have three kids, and one of them is not in school with only a couple more weeks till Christmas! Do you see where I’m going with this?

Cookie gifts

BUT, there is one thing I do not need to panic over, and that’s the holiday treats. With the help of Krusteaz Cookie Mixes, we can have all the fun Christmas cookies, without all the time & effort on my part. Not to mention, I don’t have to stress over gift giving. I have a few options to share that will help you if you are short on time this holiday season as well. And seriously, is there ever enough time?!

Oatmeal Scotchie Food gift

Food gifts do not always have to be prepared ahead of time. Many people have lots of goodies on hand during the holidays, so packaging up mixes that can be easily prepared later is a fun gift. You can mix up a homemade cookie mix, or you can save yourself some time and package up a Krusteaz mix. Just place in a mason jar (because everything looks cute in a mason jar) add a bow and some instructions on how to bake! I added red, green & chocolate chips to the above jar of mix. You could also layer the chips in the jar with the mix. (Provided you don’t start layering, then knock the jar over so that they get mixed up. Not that I would know about that. *ahem*)

You can also add some Hot Chocolate Mix, because we all know hot chocolate goes great with cookies!

Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Bars

On the other hand, baking up treats to take to a friend, neighbor, teacher, etc. is always fun too. Save yourself some time with shortcuts, like using Krusteaz Shortbread Mix to make these yummy Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Cookie Bars!

[amd-zlrecipe-recipe:8]

shortbread bars

The pan size will determine the thickness of the crust. I used an 8 x 11. You could also add nuts. I added just a few to one end, since my son is allergic.

Christmas Food Gifts

Package your treats in a food safe container, lined with festive tissue paper and a cute tag! My tags & tissue paper came from Zazzle.com, and the little tree clips and plastic container came from Target.

Krusteaz & I would like to help decrease your holiday stress level as well! We have a huge cookie prize pack to giveaway! It includes:

Krusteaz

  • Two boxes of the following mixes: Shortbread, Gingerbread, Snickerdoodle, Butter Vanilla Sugar and Oatmeal Scotchie
  • Some fun holiday baking items like an apron, tote bag, cookie cutters, frosting decorating pen and a mason jar (for gifting and storage!)
  • Holiday cookie recipe ideas for inspiration

Please enter via the rafflecopter form. This giveaway ends soon so that we can (hopefully!) get the winner their cookie prize pack before Christmas (No guarantee on that.) Open to US residents, 18 years or older.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday) The Tumbleweed Contessa, The Dedicated House, Skip to my LouI Should Be Mopping the FloorHuckleberry Love (Tuesday) Naptime  Creations, Memories By the MileVMG206The Cookie Puzzle (Wednesday) The Newlyweds PilgrimageFluster BusterGinger Snap CraftsNaptime is My TimeTessa the Domestic Diva (Thursday) Joyful HomemakingMiz Helen’s Country CottageLamberts Lately (Friday) Project InspireJust Us FourDiana RamblesThe Better Baker,Close to HomeWalking on SunshineVintage ChicDaily DishThe Diary of a Real Housewife

Copycat Sausage McGriddle Casserole & Krusteaz GIVEAWAY {#ad}

I received a gift pack from Krusteaz to facilitate this post. No other compensation was received. All opinions expressed are my own.

This post is full of good things: breakfast food; an easy, kid-approved recipe; and a giveaway! My love for breakfast food is pretty well documented here on the blog. As is my love for casseroles, and breakfast for dinner…which makes an appearance pretty regularly around here. That’s why I am happy to partner with Krusteaz to celebrate National Breakfast Month, and give you some ideas to incorporate Breakfast Night at your house. How about tonight?!

My kids love pancakes. I love sausage and eggs. Since my oldest daughter’s favorite fast food breakfast item is the Sausage McGriddle (from Mickey D’s), this recipe was born. It could be called Breakfast Lasagna because of the layers, or Pancake Casserole, but whatever you call it, give it a try. It’s easy, it’s yummy, it’s filling and it’s just…fun. A little twist on dinner that brings everyone together at the table. Or, you know, you could serve it for breakfast too!

I made my pancakes with Krusteaz pancake mix ahead of time and stuck them in the fridge to make the prep for this even easier.

I was surprised how tasty it was when all layered and baked together.

Sausage, Egg and Cheese Pancake Casserole

12-15 pancakes (depends on size)
8 eggs
1 lb sausage (maple sausage, turkey sausage, or favorite)
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
maple syrup (optional)
salt and pepper, to taste
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Spray an 8 x 8 baking dish with cooking spray, set aside.
  • In a large skillet, cook sausage on medium high heat until done, crumbling/breaking into pieces as it cooks. Reduce heat to medium.
  • In a bowl, scramble eggs, season with salt and pepper. Add to skillet with sausage. Stir eggs in with sausage and cook until eggs are set.
  • Add pancakes in a single layer to bottom of baking dish. Make sure pancakes are touching or slightly overlapping. I used 5 pancakes for this.
  • Sprinkle 1/4 cup cheese over pancakes.
  • Add 1/2 the sausage/egg mixture to the pan.
  • Top with additional 1/4 cup cheese.
  • Drizzle with syrup, if desired. (Using the maple sausage and/or using maple syrup gives this a more authentic McGriddle flavor. Could also add syrup to pancake mix when preparing.)
  • Repeat layers, starting with pancakes.
  • Top with final layer of pancakes.
  • Sprinkle with remaining cup of cheese.
  • Bake for 15 minutes until cheese is melted.
Slice and serve!
So many Krusteaz products to help make breakfast easy!

Giveaway details:

One prize pack (not pictured) will be awarded to a Makin’ it Mo’Betta reader. It will include:
  • One box of Buttermilk Pancake Mix
  • One box of Belgian Waffle Mix
  • One box of Blueberry Pancake Mix 
  • One Wild Blueberry Muffin Mix 
  • A pancake pen (for pancake art!)
  • A spatula and 
  • A coupon for FREE product
Enter via the Rafflecopter form!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monte Cristo Waffle Sandwiches for #BreakfastNight {#GIVEAWAY, #sponsored}

Did you know that September is National Breakfast Month? It’s pretty well documented on the blog here that I love breakfast food, and that we do breakfast for dinner. A lot. We aren’t the only ones… In a national survey, Krusteaz found that nine out of ten (91 percent) Americans say they eat breakfast for dinner, with 56 percent doing so once a month or more. For families with children in the house, the trend is even more prevalent as 67 percent say they have breakfast for dinner once a month or more. With that in mind, Krusteaz has declared Wednesdays as  “Breakfast Night“. It totally works for me!

With all the sports activities my kids have going on right now, dinner needs to be pretty quick and easy. That’s one of the reasons why I love doing “breakfast suppers”. When I can find shortcuts, like using Krusteaz pancake and waffle mixes, well I’m all over that too. Last Wednesday we made pancakes and Belgian waffles using Krusteaz mixes. Two kids ate pancakes, while Number One and I had these Monte Cristo Waffle Sandwiches. I made mine into a Monte Cristo – which is basically combining everything fabulous into one sandwich…it’s a French Toast/Belgian Waffle/Cheesy/Meaty/Sweet and Savory combo.

Monte Cristo Waffle Sandwich

2 servings
*Prepared waffles (My waffles were about 8 inches, so I used two and cut them in half; if you are using small 4 inch waffles, then you will need 4 of them)
4 slices Swiss cheese
1/4 pound thin sliced ham
1/4 pound thin sliced turkey
6 slices cooked bacon
cranberry sauce (the canned kind works great for this…can also use fruit preserves instead)
Dijon mustard (optional)
2 eggs
1/4 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

Pam cooking spray or butter

*We made waffles with Krusteaz Belgian Waffle Mix

  • Heat a griddle, panini press or George Foreman (this is what I used).
  • Combine eggs, milk and cinnamon (if using) in a large, shallow bowl.
  • Dip one waffle (or one half) into egg mixture, flipping to coat each side.
  • Place waffle on greased or sprayed griddle and top with 2 slices of cheese, 1/2 the ham and turkey, 3 slices of bacon, and top with thin slices of cranberry sauce or a tablespoon of jam/preserves and desired amount of mustard (if using).
  • Dip second waffle (or half) into egg mixture, coat both sides, and place on top of meat/cheese.
  • Close top if using a panini press or George Foreman and let cook until top is lightly browned and crisp. If using skillet or griddle, cook one side until browned and set, then flip to cook other side.
  • Repeat with remaining ingredients.

Recipe Source: Makin’ it Mo’Betta and Foodie Crush

Looking for other quick and easy breakfast night options?

Pancake and Sausage Muffins


Easy Oven Pancakes – mix up your favorite pancake mix and pour into a baking pan and bake….no standing and flipping!

For the GIVEAWAY, Krusteaz would like to help you make Breakfast Night a tradition in your house too! They have agreed to provide one Makin’ it Mo’Betta reader with:
  • Buttermilk Pancake Mix (1)
  • Blueberry Pancake Mix (1) 
  • Belgian Waffle Mix (1) 
  • Wild Blueberry Muffin Mix (1) 
  • Krusteaz coupons for free product.  
Entering is simple via the Rafflecopter form below. {US Residents only}

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Krusteaz provided me with the above pictured products and coupons (not pictured) so I could host my own ‘Breakfast Night’. All opinions and love of breakfast food are my own.

Easy Pumpkin Beer Bread, National Bratwurst Day & a GIVEAWAY {#sponsored}

So you may be asking yourself what in the world do Pumpkin Beer Bread and National Bratwurst Day have in common? Well, the answer would be this…

This mix plus your favorite beer (or other carbonated beverage) can make a delicious bread AND it can be used to make Beer Brats in a Blanket, which would be a fabulous way to celebrate National Bratwurst Day, which is TODAY! Y’all know how I love my food holidays 🙂
Beer, brats, cheese…sounds like a pretty good way to celebrate to me. However, did you know that the Fall seasonal beers are already in stores?! (As are Halloween decorations!) As much as I am bummed about my favorite season coming to an end, I have to admit the Fall beers, and the thought of pumpkin recipes got me a little excited. Excited enough that I just had to make Pumpkin Spiced Beer Bread!
It was so easy, and my house smelled amazing. I just added pumpkin beer, some spices and cinnamon chips to the Krusteaz Beer Bread mix and voila…a preview of Fall heaven. Buttered.
Awesome x 10

Pumpkin Spiced Beer Bread

1 package Krusteaz Beer Bread mix
12 oz. Pumpkin Beer (or carbonated beverage of choice)
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon dried orange peel (optional, could also use fresh orange zest)
1/4 cup cinnamon chips
2 tablespoons melted butter
raw sugar (optional)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Stir together bread mix, spices and beer until just combined.
  • Fold in cinnamon chips.
  • Spread in a sprayed loaf pan (see Krusteaz box for size options and baking times).
  • Top with melted butter and sprinkle with raw sugar (if desired).
  • Bake until toothpick inserted comes out clean. For my dish, it was about 45 minutes.
Now, onto the GIVEAWAY! The lovely folks at Krusteaz are offering one reader the following prize pack-
One box of Krusteaz Beer Bread mix and Three FREE product coupons (and they have a lot of products to choose from!) US residents only please. Enter via the rafflecopter form.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I received the prize pack pictured above, no other compensation was received. Prizes are provided by Krusteaz. All opinions are my own.

National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day – Celebrating with a GIVEAWAY! {#sponsored}

I love cookies. You may have noticed by the 13,000 cookie posts on the blog. (Mild exaggeration) I have decided cookies are my dessert of choice…more than cakes, cupcakes, pies….cookies are where it’s at. So, when I found out that May 15th was National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day, I had to think of a good way to celebrate. Obviously, I have to make cookies.

My friends at Krusteaz agree that National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day is a day to celebrate with wild abandon. They even have a Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie Mix to help honor the occasion!
Soft, chewy cookies with slightly crisp edges and filled with chocolate. Yes please!
Are you ready to celebrate with me?!
This cookie photo session had to be cut short due to one of the *models* disappearing. 
Don’t look at me. Those aren’t cookie crumbs around my mouth. Nope. No sir. {wink}
GIVEAWAY
In honor of National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day, Krusteaz has been gracious enough to offer a complimentary box of Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie Mix, along with 3 free product coupons, to one Makin’ it Mo’Betta reader. Just complete the rafflecopter form and you will be contacted via email if you are the winner! US residents only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I received a complimentary box of Krusteaz Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie Mix and 3 free product coupons to help facilitate this post. The winner will receive the same package via Krusteaz. No other compensation was received and as always, all opinions are my own. {And chocolate chip cookies are awesome. That’s just a fact.}

Citrus Blueberry Loaf with Meyer Lemon Glaze {quick and easy version!}

Krusteaz provided me with complimentary product to help facilitate this post. No other compensation was received. All opinions are my own.

I don’t know about where you are, but Spring was here. It was awesome! And then it left….but hopefully by the weekend it will be back. (Fingers crossed!) The warmer temperatures and amazing sunshine really put me in the mood for everything citrus! Lemon, lime, orange…you name it, and I’ve probably pinned it in the past couple of weeks. The only problem with having a huge list of things on my “to bake” list is finding the time to actually make them. The kids have had sports, then they got sick with all the pollen and stuff floating around, my little guy’s asthma acted up…the list goes on. SO, enter the quick and easy recipes that I love so much – like this one!

This bread starts with a mix and has a hint of citrus from lemon and orange zest. Then it is topped with a glaze made with Meyer lemons that really gives it a pop of sweet lemon flavor that makes your taste buds do a happy dance!
Glaze is good. Am I right, or am I right?
Look at that gorgeous color! Mother Nature may not be screamin’ spring where you are, but this is! It gets the rich yellow color from the eggs, and I used farm fresh eggs (for the first time ever) and was amazed at their vibrant color. If you follow me on Instagram you probably saw a pic.

Citrus Blueberry Loaf with Meyer Lemon Glaze

  • 1 package Krusteaz Wild Blueberry Muffin Mix (you will need the pouch of mix and the can of blueberries that comes in the box)
  • 1/3 cup water*
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest (I used the zest of one orange and one Meyer lemon)
*I used the juice of my orange, plus enough water to equal 1/3 cup
Meyer Lemon Glaze
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • approx 1 T. Meyer lemon juice
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Lightly grease or spray an 8″ loaf pan with cooking spray.
  3. In a medium bowl, blend together the muffin mix, water, oil, eggs and zest.
  4. Drain and rinse blueberries and gently fold into batter.
  5. Pour batter into loaf pan and bake 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.
  6. Cool in pan for about 10 minutes, then place on wire rack.
Glaze – Mix powdered sugar and enough lemon juice to reach desired consistency. Pour over warm cake.
Recipe adapted from Krusteaz
The only thing I would do different is to add some additional fresh or frozen blueberries. You could also skip the glaze or use orange juice in the place of the lemon juice. For more quick and easy recipe ideas, check out the Krusteaz website. They have several recipes using their mixes as a base, which is pretty darn convenient. They even have a special section for Easter! Next on my list…Cinnamon Rolls made with their Country White Bread mix. My kids looovvveee cinnamon rolls!

Pancake and Sausage Muffins

Did you know February is National Pancake Month? I couldn’t let the month go by without honoring my beloved pancakes, and what better way to celebrate than with a giveaway! Free stuff is fun, and free food stuff is mo’funner. Not only are we celebrating pancakes, but I have a new recipe that will make your busy mornings easier and tastier. The idea came for these Pancake and Sausage Muffins came from my Speedy Sausage Muffins recipe.

Pancakes and sausage….made portable! I know right?! Awesome. Even better is the fact that these are quick and easy to make with the help of Krusteaz Pancake Mix, and can be made healthier with turkey sausage. My girls loved them, as did I.
If you are not a sausage fan, I feel sure you could use bacon. Or, skip the meat and add in some blueberries (that’s next on my list. Krusteaz also makes a Blueberry Pancake Mix!), or go all cray and add chocolate chips! I’m also thinking you could add syrup right into the mix, which I didn’t do this time, but I think would work out fine…just cut back on the water used. I love versatile recipes!

Pancake and Sausage Muffins

1 lb. sausage (I used turkey sausage)
3 cups Krusteaz Pancake Mix
2 cups water
  • Cook sausage until browned and crumbled. Drain fat if needed. Set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Whisk pancake mix with water, as directed on box. (Batter will be a little lumpy.)
  • Fold in cooked sausage.
  • Let batter sit for 5-10 minutes.
  • Scoop batter into greased muffin tins, filling about 2/3 full.
  • Bake until done (12-15 mins) – remember they will not brown like muffins….they’re pancakes!

Serve warm with syrup if desired or allow to cool and store in airtight container in fridge. I’m sure they can also be frozen, but ours didn’t last long enough to try it. I got 18 muffins from this recipe.

FOR THE GIVEAWAY-
My friends at Krusteaz will provide one winner with FIVE FREE Product coupons! Coupons are good for the above pictured pancake mix, plus much more! Check out their line of products here. I am a fan of their fat free muffin and cornbread mixes too. To enter, complete the options in the Rafflecopter form. Shipping only available to US addresses.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: Krusteaz has provided me and will supply the winner with 5 free product coupons. No other compensation was received. All content is my own unless otherwise stated.

*Special Announcement* Krusteaz Virtual Baking Event! (#KrusteazHolidays)

Y’all already know that I am a fan of Krusteaz, as I’ve worked with them before and posted about some of their products I use. Sooo, I was super excited to be invited to participate in the Krusteaz Virtual Baking Event, coming up TOMORROW!! (wow, is time getting away from me!) Krusteaz and Weelicious blogger Catherine McCord will be serving up some delectable baking and gifting ideas and I can’t wait! Especially since I have to have desserts ready for at least 40 people on Sunday. My girls and I will be baking away!!

And check out the AWESOME package Krusteaz sent me to get my baking party underway! I heart Krusteaz.


You can join in the fun as well! Just tune in for the free webcast on Saturday, December 14 from 1:00 – 3:00 PM EST taking place at www.krusteaz.com/holidays.

They have already given me an excellent idea with the Holiday Pancakes – 

Pancake Mix in a jar with different add-ins…such a cute idea! I think it would be fun to do that with the cookie mix as well. And do y’all like my Christmas plaque?! Being the born and bred Southern girl I am, I lovelovelove it!
Not only did I want to tell you about the baking event, but I also wanted to share the Krusteaz “Seize the What If” Facebook Contest with a chance to win a kitchen oven makeover!  To enter the contest, simply select your favorite Krusteaz product, add in three original ingredients and name your unique recipe.  Fun! All entries are eligible to receive a coupon for free product too (more fun!) Out of all these submissions, 10 finalists will be selected who will win a year’s supply of Krusteaz products.  Here’s the direct link to the contest: https://www.facebook.com/Krusteaz/app_513828258713667 so head on over and enter! AND don’t forget…mark you calendars, set your alarm, put it in your smart phone – 


What: Krusteaz Virtual Holiday Baking Event with Catherine McCord
When: Saturday, December 14 from 1:00 – 3:00 PM EST
Who: Everyone, it’s free!
Hashtag: #KrusteazHolidays

Molten Deep Dish Cookies from Krusteaz & a GIVEAWAY!

Yes, you read correctly! I have another giveaway for you guys!! And this one is for COOKIES {said in best Cookie Monster voice}. Not just any cookies either, but molten. deep dish. cookies.  Yep, you know when I was asked if I would like to sample the new line of cookie mixes from Krusteaz, I could not hit reply fast enough to say….yesss! My kids were definitely on board too, as a matter of fact, they made the first batch as soon as they arrived on our doorstep.

These are the Molten Deep Dish Chocolate with Caramel Cookies. They are also available in Sugar Cookie with Chocolate and Classic Cookie with Chocolate (see their entire line of cookie mixes here).
The cookies are baked in a muffin tin, so you get a nice big cookie, with a creamy center. However, I think it would be fun to make our next batch in a mini muffin pan. Because everyone knows when they are mini, you can eat lots more at one time 😀  The cookies are easy to whip up, b/c as I said, my 10 and 12 year old made these. They were a little difficult to remove from the muffin pan, but since I wasn’t watching the girls, they might not have sprayed it quite enough. I’ll be making more very soon…for testing purposes of course *wink wink*  They were definitely a hit around here, as they lasted about a millisecond.
I’m pretty excited to try some of the other products from Krusteaz too, like the new line of Crumb Cake and Muffin Mixes…they look pretty amazing, but I’m MOST excited about their pumpkin line! Y’all know I’m kind of a pumpkin freak (I have an entire Pinterest board devoted to pumpkin now!) and Krusteaz has Pumpkin Spice Muffin Mix, Quick Bread, Pancake Mix, and Pumpkin Pie Bars!! I’m in love! Now, if my local grocery store would just get them in! (They are seasonal from Sept-Dec.)
SO, who would like to win the entire line of Molten Deep Dish Cookie Mixes?! Krusteaz is offering one winner a prize pack including:
  • Molten Deep Dish Classic Cookie with Chocolate Center
  • Molten Deep Dish Chocolate Cookie with Caramel Center
  • Molten Deep Dish Sugar Cookie with Chocolate Center

Just follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter form!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway open to US residents only.
Disclosure – as stated, I received sample boxes of the Krusteaz Molten Deep Dish Cookie mixes. All opinions expressed are my own (or that of my children!) No other compensation was received.