Costco Haul #2 (May) – Family MealPrep

So today the kiddos and I ran to Costco to do a quick shooping trip. We were low on some basic every day items and we had to stock up on our favorite Costco fruit as well. While we were there we did find some new goodies to try and we found a couple inexpensive household items as well. You can check out the video on youtube here and you can also check out the list of what exactly we bought down below.

Some of the fods (ok, basically all of them) are for meal prepping and following our meal plan for the next few weeks or so. As you read below I will list how or what we will be using them for in the prep. I will also try to film some additional meal prepping as family meal prepping can be hard to come by on video. However – I do think that meal prepping for an entire family is really important. Actually – I think it is more impotant than just meal prepping individually because if you get off track for a couple meals with an entire family you could basically spend an entire weeks grocery budget in just a couple “accidental” fast food meals.

Costco doesn’t cover all of our grocery or meal prep needs. in fact, I think many things at costco are over priced. There are some things that I like to buy there because they are not readily availble everywhere else. THere are other things that I buy there because they are in bulk and I don’t want to keep running back to the store for them contantly when we run out. There are some things that are great deals. Stick to your budget and stick to what you actually need for your meal plan and household supplies. If you keep those things in mind then Costco can be a good solution, if you do not keep these basic things in mind, you will max out your card in there really quickly!

For today there were some basics needed as well as some random splurges!

Here is the break down from this mornings haul:

  • two bathroom rugs… not necessary but awesome
  • towels …ours were raggedy!
  • Bananas (organic)
  • Water (40 pack)
  • dish soap
  • almond milk (3pk organic)
  • juice boxes (organiz 40 count)
  • ziploc (variety size pack)
  • wonton ramen
  • granola bars (60 count)
  • applesauce (20 count)
  • activia yogurt (20 pack)
  • strawberries
  • raspberries
  • asparagus
  • organic apples
  • asparagus
  • cutie oranges
  • tasters choice coffee
  • blueberries
  • celery sticks
  • eggs
  • daves bread (2 loafs)
  • colby cheese
  • monterey jack cheese
  • fresh corn
  • avacados
  • organiz spinach
  • organic tofu
  • panko cod
  • korean dumplings


5 minute Oreo Pie – Kid Friendly

So although this might contain far too many calories for your liking here is the quick and easy Oreo pie! So easy that your kids can probably make it all on their own! With this recipe there is no baking, no raw eggs, and no dangerous cooking equipment needed. So it is totally easy to get the little ones stirring and measuring up a storm!

So there is an “official” Oreo pie recipe on the Keebler Oreo pre made cookie crust. However I do not use that version. I am sure it works just fine but we do not have access to some of the ingredients on that list. So we improvised and this is what we came up with:

What you will need:

Oh gosh the Oreo pie crust is missing in the photo!

Milk (almond milk is a perfectly fine substitute and I have made this with unsweetened vanilla almond milk previously)

instant chocolate pudding

instant vanilla pudding

pre-made Keebler Graham cracker oreo pit crust (just 1)

cool whip or whipped cream (whichever you may have on hand…any homemade mind would be awesome too however I never make it on my own ūüôĀ )

a hand full of Oreos

Hot fudge (optional)



yes, thats it! Already made and ready to go. The easiest way for a kid to make a treat without worrying about raw eggs!
  1. Prepare the Premade pie crust. Take the plastic top off of it. yup. that. is. it.

Now if you are using hot fudge layer the inside of the pie crust with hot fudge and allow it to cool and Harden onto the crust. (kind of a protective shield from all the calories to come if you will. )

If you are skipping the hot fudge step because A. you don’t have any on hand or B. you are saving the calories for more whipped cream instead then please do not hesitate to go to step 2!

add whipped cream. sometimes I use cool whip. I use whatever is on sale, or whatever I have on hand.

2. add whipped cream to the inside of the pie crust. Form a small layer of whipped cream as your base. This does not have to be thick. Remember to reserve most of your whipped cream for the next steps. This only needs to be a few sprays or spoonfuls.

watch out everyone, 2 year old in the kitchen! Get out of her way!

3. prepare instant chocolate mix and instant vanilla pudding mix according to their box directions. (Ok so you basically need to add the required milk or almond milk but you do not need to place in the refrigerator  for a long time just mix in the milk and stir them up!)

you don’t even really need a mixer or whisk for this. the toddler just used the spoon until her arm got tired. then she passed it off to the big bro!

4. mix chocolate and vanilla pudding together. Thats right… this much stirring and mixing pudding flavors is a preschoolers dream!

OK, I lied we ended up adding in a whisk. But more for the photography beauty than necessity!


5. layer the pudding into the piecrust adding small amounts of whipped cream in between layers.

Pouring it in may require help from mom, but if the mom isn’t a total neat freak the kids can probably do it just fine! ha!
mix your layers!

6. cover the top of your master piece of pudding with whipped cream. Do it slowly and make it pretty. This layer will be on top!

You are almost done! so quick, right?!

7. Crumble an order or two and add it over the top of the whipped cream and then add some Oreos around the edges. (I use to add entire Oreos around the edges but find they could get a bit soggy so I actually like this better if you break the Oreo in half and place them in the edges this way. They still look like entire Oreos from the top and it also reserves some of your Oreos for the kids to eat if you are giving this away as a gift!)

8. Let it sit in your fridge for a while (or freezer if you want it more like ice cream cake consistency)

9. Eat it up!

** I actually find that this is a really simple and cheap gifting treat! We have made this many times for military members away from their families and the young guys and gals really enjoy it. It is simple and a yummy treat especially in the summer. The kids get a kick out of making a treat for grown ups and this one they can make all on their own!**



Help Someone By Delivering A Homemade Meal

So usually in this section I plan on sharing some of our favorite family recipes and food adventures that we may have out and about in Tokyo. Today I am taking this in a different direction. I wanted to share our experience with “Meal Train”

The basic idea of a “meal train” is to help out by delivering a meal to someone in need. This can be applied for any need but most commonly used for new parents, illness, surgery, or other life event that may cause a burden on someone to have the ability to cook meals for themselves or their family. Of course many of us are familiar with these through churches or friends but I recently participated in this through an online forum and it made scheduling and coordinating meals for someone in need 100% more efficient.

There are several websites online that you can use but I participated in a meal delivering group through This was my first time using meal and it was really easy to use even for a first timer! You can also use this for pot-luck and the like.

So basically the person who organized this idea of having meals delivered to a family just went to the site and created the event. It is free to create and then you can pass it around through emailing the link. Whoever wants to sign up for the meal train just simply clicks on the date that they want to claim for taking a meal and they follow the instructions. You must make an account which is pretty easy. You just need your name and a password. Then you claim the date you want to deliver a meal on and you type in what meal you will be taking over.

There is a section of information for each meal train where the organizer can request special diet requests like allergy information, dislikes, and such. This way you do not have to worry about what you are making and you do have a bit of a guide.

You can also view the entire meal train list. You can see what other dates are open and view the dates that are taken and what meals are scheduled on those days. So when I signed up for my meal train dates I just went in and claimed my dates. Then I also viewed the dates near mine. I wanted to make sure I didn’t serve the family chicken 2 days in a row and such.

The meal train had the delivery address, family names, and delivery time requested. It was all input by the organizer of the meal train. This made everything so easy. I didn’t have to worry about losing the address or calling around to make sure the family would be home. I just logged into the meal train and checked out all the details.

I also had reminders sent to my email from the meal train. We were pretty busy when we volunteered. We were in the middle of an international move and I had a lot on my mind. However I still wanted to help out and send over a couple meals to the family we were serving. I was worried that I might forget though! So I set up the meal train reminder to send me an email the week before, that way I could get all the items input on my grocery list. Then I had a reminder sent to me the day before meal delivery. This way I was reminded that I had a few foods to prep the night before. The automatic email reminders were amazing! This alone makes me want to tell everyone about meal train! So much easier to notify everyone and make sure no one forgets their dates or any information. And trust me I am the one the always forgets things!

Our meal train group made a meal for a family every other day for a few months. They had taken in other children that were having some family difficulties and were allowing the kids to finish the school year out before having to leave the country. Doing the meal train every other day allowed for the family to polish off any leftovers without bombarding them with food but also giving them enough meals to help them offset the costs of taking in more children without any assistance.

I only sent two meals. I also dropped off my meals on the same day. I had precooked everything and didn’t have to give the parents any cooking instructions. I thought this would just be easier for them. All they had to do was reheat. I also was not sure if they would have leftovers from my first meal. So I gave them the second meal in advance should they choose to use it early or should they decide that they wanted to make plans instead of waiting around for us to arrive with food as it was a weekend delivery.

I think that I will utilize meal train again in the future. It is just such a nice helpful way to help others. And this makes it so simple. I would not hesitate to creat a meal train in the future. When I think that someone could realize use a meal in the future I think I will just try to create at least a short meal train.

I do have a couple suggestions for anyone looking to create a meal train. I hope these will help you if you plan on trying this out.

  • suggest all meals be delivered in disposable containers (the family can skip a big clean up)
  • ( FYI- I used foil containers that were 3 for $1.00. Then I covered the tops with glad press and seal. It keeps out any leaks and is much cheaper than the large foil containers with tall plastic lids. Plus you can stack the press and seal paper without leaks. The plastic lids on foil containers crush if you have to stack them!)
  • choose meals that everyone in the household can eat (so nothing super spicy if it for a house with small children)
  • choose meals that can easily be reheated
  • choose a one dish meal if possible (easier for yourself to bake a casserole type of meal and transport less containers)
  • if you don’t have time to make a meal or think that your cooking skills aren’t adequate don’t skip out! Send over a gift card and then they can plan to eat out on a date. (if it possible for the family in the meal train)
  • simple is best, don’t stress yourself out by making a fancy dish you have never attempted. Many people who need a meal train for help with be thankful for your time and help. They don’t expect you to make a five course meal. Make a simple meal that you have cooked previously.
  • label your items. If you are not pre baking the meal make sure you leave prep instructions like the temp and time to bake. Also label what exactly you have in the containers.

I hope you have as much luck with meal train was we did! Leave your experiences or tips in the comments below!

Sweet Box Crepes – Harajuku

If you are heading to Harajuku – Takeshita Street to be precise, don’t forget to check out Sweet Box Crepes. We have been to the Harajuku thing with our kids more than once and I do have a separate post on how to make it worth your while with kids this post is just going to address our visit to Sweet Box Crepes for the most part.

Crepes are THE thing on Takeshita street. Santa Monica Crepes seems to be what tourists know about and like to wait in line for. We however always avoid Santa Monica Crepes. Not because it is not good, but just because the line is always a mile long. It is even a mile long on the weekends… when it is rainy. With a squirmy toddler we look for the area with no line no matter what trendy thing we are going to miss out on!

Sweet Box Crepes was about $5 for a Chocolate ice cream with Banana and whipped cream. It was really good. The chocolate ice cream was so good infant that we probably would have just ate that all by itself! It was not overly sweet and the whipped cream was really fluffy and fresh. It was worth our $5 and it was big enough that we got to split the treat between all of us.

They also supplied us with tiny plastic spoons so we could eat it while walking (although eating while walking is a no-no in Japan) and then we all got to share while using our own tiny spoon.

We did not get napkins although they were probably available. We didn’t have too much of a mess considering four of us were sharing – including a toddler- while walking in a crowd. We just peeled the paper down that held it all together to finish eating the actual crepe.


Another good point about picking out your crepe from Sweet Box is that you can see all the ordering possibilities in big plastic cases on the sides of the building. Each type of crepe available has a plastic replica made and on display so that you can see what exactly is in every kind. This made it really hard for our kids to decide and in the end I took them to wait on the side of the street so our stroller was not in the way of the line and the Dad did a great job deciding on a great flavor without our extra 3 indecisive minds!

The staff worked quickly and the order was made fresh. So your crepe will come out still hot and delicious… not rubbery! Also – if you have limited Japanese skills or none at all this is no problem. You can pretty much point to what you would like to order if necessary and the staff will help you out. As it is made fresh though be prepared to wait a few minutes for your order to be ready. It doesn’t take long ¬†but you will have a couple minutes of wait time.

You can find Sweet Box on Takeshita Street  just as you enter from the Harajuku station side. You will enter through the main colorful side and walk down the hill. Look for Sweet Box on the right side of the street. If you miss it, it is across the street from Paris Kids hair accessories shop.  If you pass La Pass you have walked too far.  It is easy to spot as it sits on the first corner you will come to on Takeshita street entering from the station side on the right.


The above photo is looking down the street from the Sweet Box Crepes Shop. You know if you pass these landmarks you have gone too far!

There is an area in from of the shop that you can sit down on the street and enjoy your treat if you want or you can just keep shopping and walking down the street. We came here on a weekday and found a spot to eat our treat easily, although we choose to keep walking to enjoy our shopping time! Plus we felt that we were in a time crunch as our parking was on the expensive side!


Most shops and food stalls on the street are open from 11:00 to 8:00. This can be different form shop to shop but this is the general operating time. I suggest getting there at opening time and enjoying things before the crowd gets really heavy in the late afternoon. The earlier you get there on the week days the most you will actually get to see. On the weekends it can be so crowded that we had to ship many attractions just because we couldn’t even get from one side of the street to the other with kids due to the crowd.


Strollers and Baby Wearing:

If you are going to visit Harajuku on the weekend I highly advise you to not bring a stroller. It is very crowded. So crowded in fact that you will literally be bumping into people the entire time. If it was the weekend I would still baby wear my toddler. I would be afraid that she would get lost just holding our hands in the crowded area, SO that is my suggestion.

However if you go on the week days it will still be crowded but you could use a small umbrella stroller. We did use a stroller on our last trip and it seemed to be fine. However this week day was not on a holiday and it was not very warm yet. So be aware of the weather and the time of year that you will be visiting as this will effect the crowd size on the street.

For those traveling with a wheel chair be advised that the street is very steep when coming from Harajuku station side. If you are using a wheelchair or have a handicapped or elderly visitor in your party you may want to enter Takeshita street from the opposite end near forever21 as this area is at the bottom of the hill and not steep. Actually this would be advised with strollers as well. I had to keep a really good hold on my umbrella stroller when walking down from the station side.

How to get there :

To visit Sweet Box Crepes you can drive or use the train.

if you do take the train you will want to take the JR Yamanote route and exit at the Harajuku Station stop. Takeshita Dori street will be right across from the station with a large colorful sign showing its entrance.

.If you drive you can just simply type in “harajuku station” into your google maps. It will easily get you there. We have used this multiple times and had no issues finding this location.

The difficult part you will face is parking. If you are driving just get to the area early so that you do not spend an hour looking for an open parking spot (happened to us!).

We drove and parked at a 7/11 area just down the road. Much of the parking in the area is about 20-30 minutes for between 300 or 400 yen. We stayed for around 2 hours and had to pay 1200 yen to park. ($12.00 for 2 hours of parking).


Also take note if you are traveling with little ones that bathrooms can be a bit difficult to find here. We had to make a bathroom stop and used the 7/11 down the road. We did not see bathrooms in most of the shopping area or most snack shops. Most snack shops on the street were for take away (take out) orders and there was not inside seating. There are coffee shops and small restaurants if you walk a little further off of the main Takeshita area but I would advise a bathroom stop at the train station or another area before you actually enter Takeshita street itself. If you do locate one you may have too long of a wait for a young child.

We will share more about Takeshita Dori in Harajuku in another post. We wanted to really focus on Sweet Box Crepes so that you and your kiddos could have a plan in place for your visit here. We did try out other crepe venues on previous trips but we found this to be the easiest for families with children. Shorter line, on the corner offering space for a larger group to eat, reasonable price, lots of variety of flavors to pick, and some shades to stand under while in line. It was also English friendly ordering so don’t be intimidated! If you want to check out their full menu just check out ¬†however it is in Japanese only. Please leave a message if you want to know more and we will get back to you as soon as possible if you need help with your trip to Takeshita Dori!

Happy Harajuku-ing!


Easy Protein Doughnuts

I have come up with a solution for Doughnut temptation. My super quick recipe for Easy Protein Doughnuts!

Sometimes I have a weakness for doughnuts. Who doesn’t, seriously? My kids are also big doughnut fans. Even more so than cakes ¬†and candy. However, I do not think that a doughnut can beat a really good chocolate chip cookie! That is like the holy grail of kid snacks. I will try and make a healthy version of a chocolate chip cookie when our household is begging for homemade cookies!

For now I give you the new and improved protein doughnut! It is so simple and quick to make you will never want to stop at Krispy Kreme again! Ok, thats probably not sure, but here is a solution for those counting their macros!


All you need:

PE Science Snickerdoodle protein powder (or your favorite type of protein powder)


Almond Milk (vanilla unsweetened)

Almonds (or another type of nut if you do not like almonds)

2 eggs

Coconut flour

How to Make them:

preheat your oven to 350f

Measure out 1/3 cup of almonds and chop them into small bits. I like to chop them really small because my two year old is not really great at chewing almonds. So the smaller they are the safer it is for little kids to enjoy.

After chopping the almonds add them into a mixing bowl

Add two eggs to your mixing bowl. (You can use egg whites instead if you like but your consistency may end up a little bit thinner and it works out just fine)

Measure out 1/3 cup of all your remaining ingredients and all them to your mixing bowl.

so add in :

1/3c of oatmeal

1/3c or almond milk

1/3c of coconut flour

1/3c of protein powder**

(side note: We generally use a protein powder that is a snickerdoodle flavor as it is kind of like a snickerdoodle type of doughnut. While it is cooking the house smells like a doughnut shop and my husband is always asking “what are you cooking?” because it smells delicious. Whenever I answer ‘I’m just making protein doughnuts” no one believes me! its better than any Yankee candle!)

**You will have to check your protein powder. There are some nutritional proteins (usually vegan type) that are safe for children. Not all protein powder is to be consumed by kids. If you are making a batch for kids to share be sure to check your label on your product.  If you are unsure of what types of powders can be used by children check with your pediatrician or a local supplement store. Whey Protein is the commonly suggested type for children. Look for something that is low in fats and calorie count. Optimum Nutrition has various types that are safe for children and generally recommended by health professionals. **

Mix all your ingredients in a mixing bowl until it is pretty even. Don’t over mix. Mixing should take you just about a minute or two. You can easily hand mix this recipe. No need for electric mixers.

Now for the easy part :


Now that your oven is preheated and you have mixed everything up just simply add it into a silicone doughnut mold. If you do not have one of these you could just use any silicone mold and cut your pieces into any shape you please. We just prefer a silicone mold as I do not have to add any nonstick substance and they are very easy for clean up.

In our doughnut mold it takes from 12-15 minutes in the oven. They will stay pretty pale in color. so just simple check on them throughout the cooking time and do not wait for them to turn dark golden brown. if this happens it will be too late and you may have burned them.

Set the mold on a rack to cool .

You can add toppings like melted dark chocolate if you wish but we just eat ours plain. Plus my kids probably wouldn’t want to wait any longer than they have to to eat them!






Easy Japanese Curry – Great for Freezer Meals, Budget Friendly

This is a quick and easy tutorial on how to make Japanese curry! Before living in Tokyo, I have to admit I did not even realize that curry was a popular dish in Japan. The first time I had Japanese curry was in a popular Casual family restaurant chain called COCO Curry House. It was one of our first stops in Tokyo. We were hot, tired, and starving globe trotters (with a two month old baby and a five year old along for the ride).

I wanted something fast, cheap, and tasty but to be honest I did not have high expectations of curry! My husband assured me that I would really love it. (He is much more adventurous with foods than I am, to say the least! Actually, there are many ¬†foods that I would have never tried if it were not for his suggestions… and now many of them are my favorites!)

My husband had also previously lived in Japan, so he knew many good places to try. We found that this restaurant was not too far from our new house and we were still getting acclimated to driving on the other side of the road. We did not want to take too many chances and go on any difficult driving journeys when we first arrived this was a good starting point for adventure.

On this particular day we had lots of errands to run as were still had no furniture or belongings yet. Everything was still being shipped, but… we did have our new car on this day! Which was great. (It made us feel much more at home to have a car here in Tokyo – even though technically you do not even need a car in this city!)

Since it was so hot outside, I was not really sure about having hot curry…. but I went with the suggestion, because hey… I did not have my Japan license yet. As many of you know basically a passenger has no say in the destination! When you know nothing about 1.where you are ¬†2.where you are going and 3. when you are relying on your husband to order your food anyway (because he speaks Japanese and you don’t!) its best to just go with the flow! ha!

Anyway, I had no idea that curry was a big thing here but it really is. Although it is different than Indian curry of course, It is still typically served over rice and it is spicy. It is a regular staple at most restaurants especially on the kids menus… wherever we go there is always a kids curry with rice option as a “kids seto” and many of them come with a little mini sized hamburger a juice box and a little jello type of dessert. ¬†My son loves the kids meals in Japan especially the curry.

After eating at COCO Curry I was totally obsessed. I thought that it was so tasty. I thought it also looked like something that would be pretty simple to cook, and to customize to our family’s own taste. It also looked like it shouldn’t cost too much to make at home. I searched the internet, books, and you tube of course. I found a few recipes that were helpful and led me in the right direction but they had so many steps. I did not have enough time for a long curry session so I figured out my own specifics to make curry that is just fine for my unrefined simple American pallet! It is also much quicker than the traditional way of making curry but hey, I’m just a SAHM trying to clean the house and cook dinner, and teach a 5 year old math at the same time! ūüôā

So here goes, the great thing about this recipe is that it only needs 5 cheap ingredients and it can accommodate  a small or large family with just a couple changes. You defiantly do not need to write this recipe down or do any difficult conversions.

** As always products used linked below**


What you need:

-1 box of Japanese curry mix.

(you can find this in some grocery stores, or an asian /Japanese market , or if you click this link and use my favorite kind and it will be shipped right to you through amazon. **Yes, it is an affiliate link but my purpose is not to make money from this site, it is just ¬†to share our experiences with other people and to do that sometimes I need to share where you can easily get a product because sometimes they aren’t easily accessible to everyone.)





-some type of cubed beef for stew cut into small pieces.

(just leave this out if you don’t meat and it will taste fine. I actually prefer it without the meat but my family does not.)

3 Steps to a Finished Meal:

  1. brown your meat in a pan (rinse away any grease after this)
  2. chop your veggies into bite size pieces
  3. add veggies, curry blocks, and water to put and let it cook!

I let it cook for a while to make sure that my carrots get really soft. I give it a stir from time to time. If you find that if gets a bit scummy or greasy at the top due to your meat just simply skim this off the top and discard. I never skip this part as the cuts of meat in Japan seem to contain much higher fat content than in the U.S. Рthe marbled look in beef  (as in fat throughout) seems to be thought of as tasty and high quality here. It is hard to find beef without a white marbled look in the markets near our home.

The more time you let this simmer the better it will be but if you are in a rush just let it cook until you can pierce through your carrots and potatoes easily. And Voila! you are finished. Now you are an expert at one of the most common dishes in Japan… we just did it the easy way! ūüėČ

FYI – If you are making a small batch use 2 cups of water and just 1/2 of the cubes of curry in the box. (4 little cube pieces.)

If you are making a big batch for a large size family or want a lot of leftovers to freeze just the entire 8 blocks and 5-6 cups of water.

It will seem water while it is cooking but as it cools it will thicken.

This is also a really easy freezer meal. I just cook fresh rice in the rice cooker and thaw a freezer bag of this in the fridge the night before. Heat on stove and its ready in just a few.


S&B Curry




Easy Eggless Sugar Cookies – Allergy and Vegan Friendly

easter cookies, vegan cookies Today we made easy eggless sugar cookies! Since Early this morning it has been raining in Tokyo and pretty cold outside too. It was one of those days where as soon as you got up you just wanted to go back to bed! Our entire high rise seemed pretty quiet today  and by 10:30 in the morning I was feeling like the kids in my house needed a little treat since they were inside feeling groggy!

I wanted to make something that was easy and kid friendly. Also something that a toddler and an 8 could do together and neither was feeling bored or left out. This recipe is quick enough to hold my toddlers attention and easy enough that my 8 year old can do most of it undirected.

(Side note: It is also great because you do not have to worry about the dangers of uncooked eggs. This is a big plus as at some point my toddler cried for help as she had shoved a big piece of dough in her mouth secretively and it had gotten stuck in the roof of her mouth. We had to use the iPhone flashlight to see what in the world was going on with her mouth and why was she crying. Then we noticed that it was actually a big chunk of dough! Those toddlers they can be quick, even in direct supervision! We took a quick detour from cookie cutters, retrieved dough from the mouth, brushed teeth, and then we were back at it! Thank goodness there were no raw eggs involved!)

So this recipe is really simple. You can alter it easily for a vegan friendly version, or you can use dairy products instead depending on your dietary needs. Either way it is great without eggs and it is good for kids with allergies or jus those with restrictive dietary needs.

I will leave links for the cookie cutter at the bottom. I am really happy with it. It is heavy duty and washes well. The cutter is not intricate so the cookies are easy to cut out, especially for kids.

vegan cookies

What You Need:

2 cups of flour (or coconut flour)

1/2 cup of sugar (you can use white or coconut sugar)

1  1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 cup butter (earth balance natural buttery spread for vegan and dairy free)

2 tablespoons almond milk (I used vanilla unsweetened silk brand)

2  1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract (you can use less if you like a mild vanilla flavor)

small pinch of salt (sea salt or regular)

easter cookieseaster cookiesDirections:

preheat oven to 375

make sure your butter is soft but not melted

mix all ingredients together in a mixing bowl and then stir until it is well mixed and can easily form into a ball. Do not over do it with the mixing. This should be quick and easy.

Do not continue to mix if the dough starts to get mushy. If you feel your dough is starting to get too soft or mushy then stick it in the fridge for a few.

pinch off small sections and roll out dough for cookie cutters.

transfer to cookie sheet and bake for 6-8 minutes (this depends on your oven so be sure to watch the first batch closely.)

easter cookies****These cook up very quickly and the will get pretty thick  looking in the oven. I ruined my first batch thinking that they were not done because they looked so fluffy. I thought possibly there were not cooked all the way through but they were already done.***

After baking let cool and try to regulate how many cookies everyone in your house eats before you get the chance to ice them!

easter cookiesWe decorated our with a simple mix of confectionary sugar and almond milk mixed together. just a couple  tablespoons of each is all you need. This is easy for kids to pour over the cookie and they can add any topping that they like. Its easy and fun and not too much work for mom! They can also mix this on their own depending on their age and feel very accomplished! We just added a few sprinkles from an Easter sprinkles mix on top of the icing.

From set up to clean up it took us less than 30 minutes. (which is an important thing when you are working with a 2 year old chef!)

Leave any advice and changes that worked for you in the comments! Happy eggless cookie baking!


Bunny and carrot cookie cutter

5 Minute Garlic Asparagus Sauté РKid Friendly for the Busy Family


asparagus  Let this 5 minute garlic asparagus saute save your dinner time stress! Sneaking in additional veggies can be a tough task if you have a picky toddler on your hands but this easy meal is so tasty that all of your family will be asking you to double the batch!

This is a super easy and tasty dish that even the busiest of parents can whip up in a pinch! You only need 6 ingredients! You can also adjust this to your specific dietary needs and still have a tasty and healthy outcome.

I will link all ingredients at the bottom of this post just incase you can’t find something specific in your area and want to give it a try.

You Will Need:

  • Asparagus (canned or fresh will work)
  • Coconut oil
  • Earth Balance – whipped buttery spread
  • garlic (minced or crushed)
  • pepper
  • picolos onion (bulb onion)

* some prefer to use olive oil in place of coconut oil and that would work as well but for optimum health benefits we have chosen to use a small amount of coconut oil, omitted salt, and kept with a minimum amount of vegan friendly buttery spread.

Prep Time:

  1. First, wash and prepare the asparagus. I have used canned Delmonte brand asparagus spears in the preparation for this post as currently our local markets near Tokyo do not have the best asparagus in stock at this time. ( I would prefer fresh but the canned will do just fine. I find that the canned asparagus is also a good solution for those with busy schedules and do not necessarily want to meal plan or prep as it keeps your asparagus from going bad.)
  2.  Get your onion prepared. I used Picolos onions. They are easy to peel and quick to cook.
  3. Heat a skillet with oil . This takes about 30 seconds. Medium heat will be fine.
  4. Add asparagus
  5. add 5ml of crushed or minced garlic (we added 10ml but we are garlic crazy, may be too much for most kids!)
  6. if you are adding vegan butter spread you can add 5 ml (depending on your preference of buttery taste)
  7. add ground pepper. a few turns of the pepper grinder will suffice. (we love pepper so we go overboard, but thats not for all children!)

Stir the asparagus around as it cooks. Turn your heat down if it seems to begin to stick. I use long cooking chop sticks. (Sometimes I even add a small bit of water to help the asparagus steam if I have not used an adequate amount of oil. That is always on those days where I am on a health kick! ha!) Once the asparagus turns limp and soft it is done.

Some people decide that the asparagus is done when the green changes colors. I have found that this is not necessarily reliable depending on the brand or type of asparagus.

Sometimes when it is finished I top it off with some cherry tomatoes cut in half. It makes the dish more colorful and adds some extra veggies for kids. My toddler is more willing to scarf this down with the tomatos … because recently she is into the tomato from Veggie Tales.

Happy Dinner Time to you all!

Get the Products used:

Delmonte Asparagus

Spectrum Organic Coconut Oil

Earth Balance Buttery Spread

Jar of Crushed Garlic

Assorted Pearl Onion (picolos only could not be found to be shipped on the web. Should work just fine.)