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recipes

mini pumpkin pies - so cute, perfect Thanksgiving dessert and a fun baking activity with kids

Mini Pumpkin Pies

The kids and I made mini pumpkin pies the other day. It was so much fun and they turned out really cute. For some reason, things always seem cuter in bite sized form, don’t they? Whenever I make pie, I always use pie cutters to make decorative toppings, which makes them extra fun. Plus, cutting them out of the dough is sort of like playing with play doh so of course the boys love it! I really enjoy our time together in the kitchen and hope that they will look back on these special memories fondly.

mini pumpkin pies - so cute, perfect Thanksgiving dessert and a fun baking activity with kids

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mini pumpkin pies - so cute, perfect Thanksgiving dessert and a fun baking activity with kids

mini pumpkin pies - so cute, perfect Thanksgiving dessert and a fun baking activity with kids

mini pumpkin pies - so cute, perfect Thanksgiving dessert and a fun baking activity with kids

Mini Pumpkin Pies

My favorite Pumpkin Pie Recipe made in mini form.


Copycatable Rating: 🐱🐱🐱🐱🐱
Credit: Pumpkin Pie Recipe is from Parents Magazine November 2004

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 can (15 oz.) pure pumpkin
  • 1 can (12 oz.) evaporated milk
  • 1 package (comes with 2 sheets) Pillsbury refrigerated pie dough
  • 4 inch round cookie or biscuit cutter (I used the pie cutter from my Breville electric pie maker, but I am going to buy the cutter set I linked for future baking)
  • Pie crust cutters (mine are from Williams Sonoma a few years ago, but they usually offer a variation of them every year. I also found these similar ones on Amazon)
  • whipped cream

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. In a bowl, combine sugar, pumpkin pie spice, salt and pepper.
  3. Whisk in eggs, vanilla, pumpkin and evaporated milk.
  4. Slightly roll out pie crust dough.
  5. Use round cutter to cut circles from the two sheets of dough. I was able to make 12 mini pies with re-rolling and had leftovers to make the decorative toppings.
  6. Gently, push the dough into the muffin pan. I used the finger pinching technique to crimp the edges (with the thumb and index finger of one hand pinch the outside edge of the crust while pressing from the inside with the index finger on the other hand).
  7. Pour pumpkin mixture into pie crusts (I had leftover pie filling – so if you want to buy more of the dough you could easily make more pies)
  8. Bake for 15 minutes.
  9. Reduce heat to 350 degrees then bake an additional 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  10. Let cool on a wire rack for 2 hours.
  11. Refrigerate if serving the next day.
  12. Serve at room temperature with whipped cream.
  13. For decorative pie toppings:

  14. Roll out dough and use pie cutters for decorative toppings.
  15. Place all cutouts on a silpat lined cookie sheet
  16. Put a little egg wash on them (one egg lightly beaten with 2 teaspoons of water)
  17. Bake them in a 375 degree oven until golden brown, about 10-15 minutes. (keep an eye on them because mine always cook quickly).
  18. Once cool, place on top of cooled mini pumpkin pies.

For another fun pumpkin pie idea, check out this post.

fancy pumpkin pie using cookie and pie crust cutters

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to pin it to Pinterest. πŸ™‚ Happy Baking!mini pumpkin pies - so cute, perfect Thanksgiving dessert and a fun baking activity with kids

shark week playdate - free banner printable, chumming for sharks yogurt recipe, shark bait recipe, link to popcorn bucket printable and tons of other shark week ideas

Shark Week Playdate and Free Printables

We had our friends over for a playdate during shark week, so I of course used it as an excuse to have a fun, shark themed get together. I love little events like this because it allows me to be crafty and creative without all the work and stress of a full-blown party. I didn’t start making stuff or preparing until Monday (our friends came over on Wednesday) so this is totally do-able for busy or last-minute moms. πŸ™‚

DECORATIONS

I started out like I always do, searching Pinterest for ideas and free printables. I found some really cute stuff to use as well as some fun ideas. I didn’t see anything I could use for a banner though, so I made one myself. I think it turned out really cute and I always feel like a banner makes the table look complete. You can download the free banner printable by clicking HERE. Just cut it out, punch holes in the corners and run string through it. Lately I have been using blue painters tape to hang up my banners then covering the tape up with cute washi.

shark week letterboard idea

I also used my letterboard for the occasion. It was a bit of a challenge creating the shark fin, but I love how it turned out.

SNACKS

Chumming for Sharks Yogurt

chumming for sharks yogurt - perfect healthy snack or breakfast for shark week or a shark birthday

I wanted to have a few snacks with at least one healthy option, but most of the ideas on Pinterest were not very healthy. Usually I am all about desserts, but we have been making an effort to eat healthier lately so I came up with my own snack idea by combining a few ideas from Pinterest. We ended up making chumming for sharks yogurt. The kids helped me make these, which was a lot of fun. To make these you will need the following:

  • Granola (optional)
  • Greek Yogurt (we used vanilla)
  • Blue food coloring (you only need a few drops)
  • Frozen Strawberries in Sugar (we bought this from the frozen section of the grocery store)
  • Plastic Cups
  • Mini spoons
  • Grey construction paper (to make shark fins)
  • Glue gun

We added a little bit of granola to the bottom of the cups, put a few drops of blue food coloring into the yogurt, scooped the yogurt into the cup, then topped it with the chum (the frozen strawberries). I explained to the boys that chum is what they dump in the water to attract sharks and then what do you know, a few sharks showed up and jumped right into our bowls. πŸ˜‰ The kids loved it! I free hand cut out shark fins out of grey construction paper and glued them onto mini spoons. I also used a few sharks left over from the adorable popcorn buckets I made using a printable from My Printly.

Shark Bait

shark bait popcorn snack is easy, delicious, and perfect for shark week or a shark party

Of course, I had to do one sweet treat, so I made shark bait. It was so delicious and all the little sharks ate it up super fast!Β I spent Tuesday night driving from store to store searching for shark gummies. I feel like I always see them until the time I need them, then they vanished. I found gummy bears, worms, snakes, octopus, frogs, dinosaurs, alligators and lions! Literally every gummy animal ever made except sharks! Then I thought, why would sharks want to eat sharks, and decided that putting them in my shark bait didn’t make sense anyways. That is when I came up with the goldfish idea. Sharks love eating fish, especially delicious sweet ones. They have so many fun flavors now too that you could use, but I must say, the s’mores goldfish were perfect in this recipe. To make the shark bait you will need the following:

  • Sea Salt Air Popped Popcorn
  • Ghiradelli White Chocolate Chips
  • Blue M&Ms
  • S’mores Goldfish Crackers

I put wax paper on a cookie sheet, spread out my popcorn, sprinkled in goldfish and m&ms, then drizzled the melted white chocolate over it. I put it in the fridge until it cooled then broke it apart and put it in the cutest popcorn buckets from My Printly. These were so perfect for our playdate and I have been refilling the containers with shark bait all week so the boys can munch on it while watching Shark Week.

Ocean Water

ocean water - blue gatorade with a swedish fish makes an easy and fun drink for shark week or a shark party

For drinks, I kept it simple with blue Gatorade and a swedish fish on each straw.

ACTIVITIES

Shark Sensory Bin

shark sensory bin

I set up a shark sensory bin. What I love most about sensory bins is that they don’t always have to be fancy. I didn’t have time to buy anything (and to be honest didn’t really want to spend a bunch of money) so I just used what we already had. A bag of glass circle vase fillers, water and plastic sharks. That’s it! And you know what, the kids loved it and played with it for quite a while. Sometimes, I think we as moms get caught up in making everything Pinterest worthy, but kids don’t need much to have fun. They were getting so creative and having the best time! When you give kids water activities, you usually can’t go wrong.

Shark Slime

shark slime - perfect activity for shark week

We also made shark slime. For our first attempt, the day before the playdate, we tried to use a non-borax recipe, but the slime was so sticky. I watched a bunch of you tube videos and started adding everything they recommended for sticky slime, but nothing helped. So my hubby bought borax and like magic our sticky bowl of blue goop turned into slime. When our friends came over, we made a second batch using the borax recipe and it worked great. The kids loved playing with their sharks in the slime! I used this recipe to make the slime.

Shark Play Doh Mats

shark week playdoh mats free printables

I also had a little play doh station with our shark week playdoh mats, some playdoh and some cutters. My boys had already done this activity earlier in the week and the kids were all having so much fun with the other activities that we didn’t get to this. You can check the play doh mats out here.

Shark Cutting and Tracing Activity

free printable - shark cutting and tracing practice

I also made a fun little printable for Hudson. I printed one out and had it laminated so it could be used as a tracing exercise. Both boys had fun with that. Then I printed one out on regular paper so Hudson could also use it for cutting. Hudson loves cutting so this was perfect for him. You can get the printable HERE. *Graphics were purchased from Prettygrafik Design.

CRAFTS

I had a few crafts to do that I found on Pinterest, but we didn’t get to those either. Good thing shark week lasts an entire week so we can fit in all the fun we planned.

Clothespin Sharks

clothespin shark craft for shark week

I let each of the kids select one craft from Pinterest. Hudson chose clothespin sharks from Kix. This wasn’t an ideal craft for my kids’ ages so I pretty much ended up making these, but the kids did love playing with them.

Toilet Paper Roll Sharks and Paper Towel Roll Hammerhead Sharks

Luc chose to make paper toilet roll sharks. The one he selected was a regular shark, but his favorite shark is the hammerhead so I got really excited when I found a paper towel roll hammerhead shark on Pinterest. We are planning to make both, but so far have only completed phase one. I will update this once we finish the project.

Shark Hats

shark hats perfect for shark week

I was also planning to make shark hats, but the hats we selected required an obscure paper size in numerous colors that was not readily available (please tell me I am not the only one who spends tons of time driving from store to store looking for seemingly basic craft supplies that are actually impossible to find). Luckily, one of my friends, Danielle, from Mama Life Inspiration, who is an awesome blogger, posted an adorable shark hat idea. So we ended up making those instead and the boys had tons of fun finger painting their shark fins and tails. Of course they also loved running around in their shark hats. For more details on the hats and for the link to the shark fin hat template click here. Danielle also has a bunch of other fun shark week ideas on her blog so be sure to take a look.

As you can see, we squeezed a whole lot of Shark Fun into one week. My boys just love sharks so much that I couldn’t help myself and went a little overboard. You could easily pick just a few of these ideas to make your shark week a bit more fun.

I hope you have a fin-tastic Shark Week!!

oreo truffle christmas tree

Oreo Truffle Christmas Tree

I know elves stick to the four main food groups Candy, Candy Canes, Candy Corn and Syrup, but in my world, the four main food groups are: Candy, Cupcakes, Cookies and Coffee. πŸ˜‰ And in the cookie department, Oreos have my heart all the way. So, naturally, I look for any excuse to buy them.

This brings me to Oreo truffles, one of my absolute favorite desserts. I make oreo truffles instead of cake pops for every party. They don’t require baking so they can be whipped up much faster than traditional cake pops, but you can still create all sorts of fun things with them. Every year, I tell myself I am going to make wintery fun pops from my Bakerella cookbook, but I always have so much going on this time of year that it never ends up happening. I still make my oreo truffles, but usually just stick them on a tray and call it a day.

image from pinterest - egg carton christmas tree

When I saw this photo of an egg carton Christmas tree on Pinterest a few days ago, I knew a Christmas tree of oreo truffles would be a perfect, simple and festive dessert.

Oreo Truffle Christmas Tree

  • Servings: Approx.18 truffles
  • Print

Delicious and easy oreo truffles displayed as a Christmas Tree are the perfect holiday dessert.

Copycatable Rating:????? Credit : oreo truffle recipe from Bakerella

Ingredients

  • 1/2 package of regular oreos
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • Green Candy Melts
  • Yellow Candy Melts
  • M&Ms for decorations
  • corn syrup

Directions

  1. Finely crush oreos in mixer
  2. Transfer to bowl, add softened cream cheese and stir to combine
  3. Using a cookie scoop, form balls and place on wax lined cookie sheet. (I used a mini star cookie cutter to make one star shaped)
  4. Place in refrigerator.
  5. Melt candy melts following packaging instructions.
  6. One at a time, dip a truffle into the melted candy.
  7. Place onto the lined baking sheet and let them dry.
  8. Assemble into tree shape and use corn syrup to attach m&ms
  9. Refrigerate until ready to eat

north pole breakfast for elf on the shelf arrival

North Pole Breakfast 2016

This has to be one of my favorite holiday traditions. It is such a fun way to celebrate the arrival of our elf, Jingle Bell. Every year he arrives the first Saturday of December and we have a fun and festive breakfast to kick off the holiday season.

north pole breakfast for elf on the shelf arrival

This year, I tried a few new things from Pinterest. I made reindeer donuts, which we all loved! I had been wanting to make these the past few years, but Hudson couldn’t eat the chocolate donuts until this year so I knew these were a must! They were so easy and so cute. You just add m&ms for the nose, pearlized sprinkles for the eyes and pretzels for the antlers. (Total 5 star copycatable rating).

reindeer donuts for north pole breakfast

I also made stacked donut snowmen, which were cute, but I’m not sure that I would make them again. I’m kind of a semi-plan/mostly fly by the seat of my pants at the last minute kind of gal and these were just a bit too much work for a last minute project. You use two different sizes of powdered donuts and powdered donut holes to make the snowmen. My grocery store didn’t have powdered donut holes, so I bought glazed and covered them in powdered sugar. (well, I actually accidentally covered them in flour first, ooops, then attempted to brush them off and re-cover them with powdered sugar). Then you add pretzel sticks for the arms. (so far so good). For the hats, I bought chocolate wafers from the ice cream section and Godiva chocolates. The original recipe called for chocolate cordial cherries, but I couldn’t find those and don’t really like cherries, so I figured I couldn’t go wrong with Godiva. I attached the chocolates to the wafers with some frosting (still going good). Then I attached the hats to the tops of the snowmen. I cut a sliver off each donut hole to make the tops flat, which also helped the hats to stick. Then came time to make the faces. This is where things went downhill. The instructions said to use black decorating icing – not the gel kind – but of course, my grocery store only had gel so that is what I used. It did not stick! I didn’t even attempt the orange frosting noses and stuck orange tic tacs in instead and after struggling with three snowmen, I decided they didn’t need faces. haha. (I would say this is a 3 star copycatable rating for a few reasons-it required a lot of ingredients, a lot of assembly, and the faces were very challenging. In all fairness, I didn’t exactly follow the recipe, so maybe next year I will plan ahead better and give it another try). The good news is that the kids loved them so at least my effort was rewarded.

snowmen donuts at north pole breakfast for elf on the shelf arrival

I also did my usual strawberry banana santa hats and north pole donut tower.

north pole breakfast for elf on the shelf arrival santa hats made with bananas, strawberries and mini marshmallows

Every year, Jingle Bell brings the kids gifts, writes a welcome letter and puts out a matching sign. (these usually can be found on pinterest, but I couldn’t find a new one this year so I made my own. I actually loved this because I was able to tie in the color of my table, which usually clashes with all the Christmas green.)

north pole breakfast welcome letters from elf on the shelf

north pole breakfast welcome letters from elf on the shelf

Jingle Bell brought Hudson pajamas and an activity book and he brought Luc a collection of elf on the shelf books.

gifts at north pole breakfast - elf on the shelf pajamas and coloring book

north pole breakfast gift from elf

Luc said he didn’t like Jingle Bell, but he loved the donuts! Hudson loved everything about the breakfast (he shares my love of holidays and sweets!). It was such a fun morning!

north pole breakfast elf on the shelf arrival

Click here to download my free printable so you can have your own North Pole Breakfast! πŸ™‚

north pole breakfast free printable for elf on the shelf arrival

north pole breakfast with free printable for elf on the shelf arrival

monster saltine toffee crackers

Monster Saltine Cracker Toffee

Saltine Cracker Toffee, aka “Christmas Crack” (I have never been a fan of that name) is one of my favorite things to make. I was only introduced to it by a friend last Christmas and I have been making it ever since. It is so easy to make and involves very few ingredients so it is a great dessert to whip up for last-minute situations. I just change my toppings to fit each holiday.This time, I used green candy melts and fun toppings to make a spooky version for Halloween.

Monster Saltine Cracker Toffee

A Halloween twist on this classic dessert. Add edible eyes, gummy worms, mini Oreos, m&ms and sprinkles for a fun and easy dessert


Copycatable Rating:?????
Credit: adapted from theidearoom.net

Ingredients

  • 30-40 saltine crackers
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 cups green candy melts
  • mini M&M’s, mini oreos to make bats, candy eyes, gummy worms and sprinkles to decorate

Directions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350F
  2. Line a large jelly roll pan with aluminum foil. Spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray and then line the pan with saltine crackers.
  3. Place the butter and sugar in a medium-sized pot over medium-low heat. Stir until butter has melted. Once butter has melted, bring to a boil. Stir constantly. Turn down the heat and simmer for 3-5 minutes until thickened.
  4. Once it’s nice and bubbly, remove pan from heat.
  5. Pour evenly over saltine crackers and spread mixture with a knife. Try to move fast during this part so the toffee doesn’t harden.
  6. Place pan in the oven and bake for 5-7 minutes.
  7. While pan is in the oven, place bowl of candy melts in microwave and melt following packaging instructions. *They don’t need to be completely melted as the heat from the toffee will finish melting them*
  8. Remove pan from oven and then pour candy melts on top and spread all over the toffee with a spatula.
  9. Sprinkle toppings on then place in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  10. Once chocolate has hardened break pieces off the foil and store in an air-tight container.

*Another fun little tip is to make this in two smaller pans so you can use different toppings. I made one pan of the Monster Saltine Cracker Toffee and one pan of Candy Corn Saltine Cracker Toffee. For the candy corn toffee use orange, yellow and white candy melts, orange and yellow m&m’s, sprinkles and candy corn (if you don’t eat it all while baking….oops) πŸ˜‰
saltine cracker toffee making

halloween saltine cracker toffee two ways monster and candy corn

 

strawberry ghouladas drink recipe

Strawberry Ghoul-adas

I know it is supposed to be fall and everyone is probably enjoying their cold weather drinks right now, but here in Cali it is still hot! I decided it was the perfect excuse to transform my favorite fruity concoction, a Lava Flow, into a festive Halloween drink. This is so easy I am not even sure if it qualifies as a recipe, but here ya go.

Strawberry Ghoul-adas

  • Servings: syrup fills approx. a dozen syringes and drink recipe is adjustable
  • Print

Transform the tropical and fruity lava flow into a fun and easy Halloween drink

Copycatable Rating:????? Credit: I’m taking credit for this one although I obviously didn’t invent the Lava Flow πŸ˜‰

Ingredients

    For the Simple Strawberry Syrup
  • 1 10 ounce bag of frozen strawberries
  • 4 tablespoons boiling water
  • 6 tablespoons sugar (if your strawberries are really sweet or you aren’t addicted to sugar like me you could easily cut the boiling water and sugar amounts in half)
  • For the Pina Coladas
  • Pina Colada Mix
  • Rum
  • Ice

Directions

    For the Simple Strawberry Syrup
  1. Combine boiling water and sugar to make a syrup
  2. Add syrup to frozen strawberries and blend until smooth
  3. Suck strawberry syrup into syringes – filling to the 1 ounce mark
  4. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve
  5. For the Pina Coladas
  6. Blend pina coloda mix, rum and ice in blender following measurements on the mix.
  7. Pour into cup and serve with “bloody” syringe.
  8. Watch as the blood fills your drink – stir – enjoy.

pumpkin whipped cream

Pumpkin Whipped Cream

I made this quick and easy pumpkin whipped cream for our Halloween playdate and it exceeded all my expectations. The DIY Foodie said it would change my life, and honestly it did. It is so easy, yet it takes my morning coffee to a whole new level. I stored the leftovers in a tupperware in the fridge so I could enjoy “pumpkin spice lattes” at home all week. By pumpkin spice lattes, I mean, coffee, with french vanilla coffee mate and a splash of pumpkin spice coffee mate added, then topped with this heavenly whipped cream. You could also put this on scones, pumpkin pie, cookies, anything really to add a little fall magic.

Pumpkin Whipped Cream

  • Servings: A medium bowl
  • Print

Quick and easy pumpkin whipped cream that will surely get you in the fall spirit.

Copycatable Rating:????? Credit: slightly modified recipe from The DIY Foodie

Ingredients

  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 3 tablespoons Libby’s pumpkin puree

Directions

  1. Add all ingredients to a mixing bowl or stand mixer. *make sure ingredients are cold
  2. Whip for 2-4 minutes until it reaches desired consistency

pumpkin scones

Pumpkin Scones

These pumpkin scones are perfect for fall. They are quick, easy and only have a few ingredients. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Scones

  • Servings: 12-16
  • Print

Quick and easy scones that are perfect for fall.


Copycatable Rating:?????
Credit: Scone Recipe adapted from www.taste.com.au

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups self-raising flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup Libby’s pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1/2 cup sprite
  • 1 tablespoons milk
  • For the Glaze (Optional)
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk
  • For the Spiced Glaze (Optional)
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400F
  2. Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl
  3. Whisk the pumpkin and cream in a separate bowl until smooth and add to flour
  4. Add sprite and mix with a knife until sticky dough forms
  5. Place onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly *over kneading will cause scones to be tough
  6. Press dough out with hands until approximately 1 inch thick
  7. Use round 2 3/4″ biscuit cutter dipped in flour to cut rounds from dough
  8. Gently knead the leftovers and cut more rounds
  9. Place the scones, side by side and just touching, on a parchment lined tray.
  10. Lightly brush with milk
  11. Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden.
  12. To make the glaze, combine confectioners’ sugar and milk. Whisk until smooth.
  13. To make the spiced glaze, combine confectioners’ sugar, pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice and milk. Whisk until smooth.
  14. Once scones have completely cooled, spoon the glaze on each scone.
  15. Place spiced glaze in ziploc bag. Cut tip off and drizzle glaze over scones.
  16. Allow glazes to set before serving.

halloween playdate monster donuts and pumpkin scones

Halloween Playdate

I hosted a playdate today for my Mom’s Club group and did a few little things to make it extra fun for everyone. Most of these were really simple, but made a big impact. First of all, I added vampire teeth and candy eyes to our glazed donuts. I’m sure you have seen this all over pinterest and I am here to tell you it is as easy as it seems and the kids loved it. If you are having trouble with the eyes just put a little corn syrup on the backs so they stick without having to shove them in.

monster donuts

I also set out a few coffee mate creamers including pumpkin spice to add to our coffee along with a bowl of homemade pumpkin whipped cream.

coffee creamer pumpkin whipped cream

I mostly followed the recipe from DIY Foodie and it was so delicious and super easy. It made the coffee drinks seem so decadent, which is so needed when a bunch of little kids are running around, scattering rice from the Halloween sensory bin, I set up for them, all over your yard.

pumpkin whipped cream

I also made some pumpkin scones for the moms to enjoy. I found a starbucks copycat recipe, but it seemed a bit labor intensive for a playdate snack so I scoured the internet for another option. I have an awesome scone recipe myself, but am not super comfortable with creating my own recipes, especially when it comes to things like scones. After scouring the internet, I found one that sounded really similar to my plain scone recipe on taste.com.au – thank you Australia! I tweaked the recipe a little and came up with a Β Pumpkin Scone Recipe that is really simple and delicious. Then just for fun, I decided to make the two glazes in the starbucks copy-cat recipe (of course I simplified it because again-the less ingredients I have to buy the better in my book). If you don’t want to trouble with the glaze (I’ll admit, my glaze presentation could use some work) you could always serve them with jam and the delicious pumpkin whipped cream.

pumpkin scones

I also grabbed these fun water bottles from Target. Cute, right?

halloween playdate water bottles

It was a very fun morning for us adults and the kids and even though everything was fairly simple my mom friends were impressed.

 

 

Starfish Crispy Treats Cereal

These are so easy to make and oh so cute! I made rice crispy treats using a slightly non-traditional recipe because of my son’s dairy allergy (I have also convinced myself that these are healthier because they don’t have butter), but feel free to use your favorite crispy treat recipe.

Starfish Crispy Cereal Treats - simple and fun treats perfect for an ocean, nemo, dory or ariel the little mermaid themed party

Supplies
– 3 tablespoons canola oil
– 4 cups marshmallows
– 5 cups rice krispies cereal
– Dash of vanilla
– Star shaped cookie cutter
– Orange Candy melts
– Candy eyes
– Parchment or wax paper

Steps
1. Microwave oil and marshmallows in 30 second increments until melted.
2. Add a dash of vanilla then stir until well combined (the oil doesn’t incorporate as well as butter does, but if you keep stirring it will combine)
3. Add cereal and mix well.
4. Press into greased pan (when we were avoiding soy I used a bit of canola oil and rubbed it all over the pan. Now we just use Pam Spray)
5. Let cool slightly, you don’t want them to cool completely, then use a cookie cutter to cut out shape. (I usually take all the extra and smash it together to get a few extra treats- then I snack on the rest.
6. Melt candy melts according to package instructions in a medium bowl (I used microwave safe cereal bowls)
7. Press each treat into the liquid covering about 1/3rd of it.
8. Remove and place on the wax paper (If they don’t look perfect, no worries. I thought the slight swirl I made flipping each one over made the starfish look more realistic)
9. Before the candy coating hardens, place the eyes on.

Viola! So easy, right? These are so delicious and way too simple and they would be perfect for so many birthday party themes. Not to mention, you could easily use a different candy melt color and cookie cutter to fit your party. The options are endless.