Homemade Biscuit Mix {Easy Pantry Staple!}

prepared biscuit mix in a jar

Biscuit Mix in a jar is a homemade staple that is so simple to make! 

Made with 5 simple ingredients, this all-purpose baking mix recipe is great to have on hand. It’s economical and so easy to make!

prepared biscuit mix in a jar

Why We Love this Recipe 

Homemade Biscuit Mix (often sold as Bisquick) only uses 5 simple ingredients that are probably already in your pantry. And it only takes 10 minutes from start to finish.

While it’s preservative-free, this biscuit mix will still last in the fridge or freezer for up to 3 months.

There are so many things that can be made from Biscuit Mix. From savory foods like biscuits and chicken pot pie to desserts like shortcake and funnel cake.

 

Ingredients/Variations

Homemade Bisquick uses simple, staple ingredients.

DRY INGREDIENTS Flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt are all added to this recipe.

SHORTENING Adding shortening to your biscuit mix helps to give the biscuits a crumbly delicate texture. You can also substitute butter or margarine (in the same amount) for similar results.

biscuit mix ingredients in a food processor

How to Make Biscuit Mix

With just one step, this homemade biscuit mix is so easy to prepare!

  1. Using a food processor or whisk, blend all ingredients together.

Store in a jar in the fridge for up to 3 months.

Since the homemade biscuit mix doesn’t have any chemicals or preservatives in it, it needs to be stored in the refrigerator to keep the shortening from spoiling.

Way to Use Biscuit Mix

To Make Biscuits

While a classic biscuit or buttermilk biscuit is always a delicious choice, having a quick and easy method is perfect for busy weeknights!

  1. Combine 3 cups of biscuit mix with 1 cup of milk or buttermilk.
  2. Roll out dough (or make “drop” biscuits by making golf-ball sized portions).
  3. Bake at 425°F for 8-10 minutes or until golden and crumbly.

So tasty served up with lentil soup and a caesar salad.

Tip: Add 1/2 cup of shredded cheddar cheese for those fancy Cheddar-Bay restaurant-style biscuits.

Overview of a jar of homemade biscuit mix.

To Make Dumplings

  1. Combine 2 cups of baking mix with 2/3 cup of milk.
  2. Drop spoonfuls into hot stew and simmer 10 minutes.
  3. Cover the pot and cook another 10 minutes.

Perfect for chicken stew or beef stew.

To Make Shortcakes

  1. Combine 2 1/3 cups mix, 1/2 cup of milk, and 3 tablespoons of sugar.
  2. Form into patties and bake at 425°F for about 12 minutes. Cool and split in half.

These shortcakes are perfect for strawberry shortcake.

To Make Funnel Cakes

Follow this classic funnel cake recipe or try this easy biscuit mix version!

  1. Combine 1 1/2 cups mix, 1/2 cup of water and two tablespoons of sugar.
  2. Pour batter into a glass measuring cup with a spout and pour ribbons into the hot oil.
  3. Fry until browned, remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Or try mixing powdered sugar with this delicious pumpkin pie spice mix. Yum!

Homemade Bread and Rolls

Did you make this Biscuit Mix? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

prepared biscuit mix in a jar
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Homemade Biscuit Mix

This Biscuit Mix is easy to make and can be used for so many different things!
Course Bread, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 24 biscuits
Calories 191
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients

  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 3 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Instructions

  • Place all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until well mixed, about 5 times.
  • Store mixture in the refrigerator or freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Use in recipes calling for biscuit mix or bake biscuits.

Notes

To Make Biscuits
Combine 3 cups biscuit mix with 1 cup milk or buttermilk. Roll out dough 1/2" thick and cut into circles.
Place on an ungreased tray and bake at 425°F for 8-10 minutes.
If you don't have shortening, use butter or margarine instead. (Use the same amount of butter or margarine as shortening) 
Store in the fridge or freezer for up to 3 months

Nutrition

Serving: 1biscuit | Calories: 191 | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 316mg | Potassium: 185mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Calcium: 70mg | Iron: 2mg
homemade biscuit mix ingredients in a food processor with writing
a jar of homemade biscuit mix with writing
homemade biscuit mix with text
Top image - homemade biscuit mix. Bottom image - homemade biscuit mix ingredients with writing
Top image - homemade biscuit mix. Bottom image - homemade biscuit mix ingredients with text

Homemade Soft Pretzels {Oven Baked!}

Homemade soft pretzels are salted on the outside

and soft on the inside.

I’ve shared my best tips below to make sure these come out perfect every time!

An easy from-scratch dough is folded into pretzels, boiled, and brushed with an egg wash before being baked.

Baked soft pretzels in a basket with honey mustard dip

The Perfect Homemade Recipe

You likely have soft pretzel ingredients at home in your pantry already.

This easy recipe walks you through the steps to creating better-than-bought pretzels right from your very own oven! Warm with a golden exterior, a soft chewy interior and the texture you know and love from your favorite pretzel stand.

The great thing about making pretzels at home is that you know exactly what goes into them and they can be topped with anything you’d like (from sesame seeds to cinnamon and sugar).

Ingredients to make soft pretzels on a countertop.

Ingredients

FLOUR This recipe uses all-purpose flour for the perfect consistency.

YEAST  1 packet of active dry yeast is equal to 2 1/4 teaspoons. Mix the yeast with a bit of sugar & water and let is sit until foamy (5-10 min). Once foamy, it can be combined with the flour.

It is important to check the expiry date on your yeast, if it’s out of date your dough will not rise properly.

BAKING SODA/WATER BATH Before baking, the prepared pretzels will be dipped in boiling water with baking soda in it. This gives the color and texture to the exterior of the pretzel.

EGG WASH An egg wash is brushed over the pretzels before baking. It is optional but helps the toppings to stick and makes the pretzels pretty and shiny!

How to Make Soft Pretzels

This recipe is made from yeast bread dough that is curved into pretzel shapes, boiled then baked. A quick overview of the steps needed:

    • PREPARE DOUGH This is a typical yeast dough and can be made in a stand mixer. After the dough has risen, divide into 8 equal parts.

Rising dough in a glass bowl to make soft pretzel

    • SHAPE DOUGH Roll into ropes and shape into pretzels (how to fold pretzels below).
    • BOIL Gently lower into boiling water for several seconds.
    • BAKE Remove, drain and brush with egg wash, and sprinkle with topping. Bake until toasty brown.

Soft baked pretzels can be customized into different shapes and sizes. It’s fun to turn into initials for the kids. Or, simpler shapes, like pretzel sticks.

Steps to form dough into pretzels.

How to Fold a Pretzel

  1. Roll each piece into a 24-inch rope.
  2. Form the dough into a “U” shape.
  3. Cross the two ends over each other.
  4. Fold the ends down to the bottom of the U shape to form a pretzel.

What Does the Boiling Do?

Once the pretzel is formed, it is lowered into boiling and baking soda for a few seconds. This changes the pH of the outside and gives it that beautiful brown color.

This also gives the flavor we love in pretzels and starts the crust formation which finishes in the oven.

Close up of a soft pretzel topped with salt on a baking tray.

How Important is Egg Wash?

Egg wash helps all those tasty toppings adhere to the curved surface of the pretzels. In addition, the egg and water wash will give pretzels a golden brown sheen and satisfying crunch.

For a softer crust, use the whole egg. A wash made from egg white only and water will produce a harder, crisper exterior.

Variations/Toppers

Four baked soft pretzels on a baking tray.

The Best Dippers for Soft Pretzels

Even soft pretzels are on the dry side, so an array of dips will always be welcome. Tangy mustard is always popular. Here are some other options that make the best soft pretzel dips.

  • Beer Cheese Dip – Classic combo
  • Honey Mustard – Combine equal parts mayonnaise, honey and prepared mustard (or a bit of dijon). Add a pinch of garlic powder and 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce.
  • Fluffy Pumpkin Pie Dip Perfect for sweet pretzels
  • Dijon Mustard – or spicy mustard
  • Homemade Pizza Sauce – sprinkle pretzel with parmesan cheese before baking

Did you make these homemade soft pretzels?  Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below!

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Oven Baked Soft Pretzels

Deliciously soft, slightly chewy pretzels with a perfect exterior.
Course Snack
Cuisine American
Prep Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 8 pretzels
Calories 304
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients

Dough

  • 1 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast (1 pkg)
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 oz butter melted

Water Bath

  • 10 cups water
  • 2/3 cup baking soda

Topping

  • 1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
  • kosher salt

Instructions

  • Combine water, sugar, salt, and yeast in a stand mixer. Let sit 5-10 minutes or until foamy.
  • Add 2 cups flour and the butter to the yeast mixture. With a dough hook, mix on low. Continue adding flour a bit at a time until combined.
  • Knead in the mixer with the hook until the dough is smooth, about 5 minutes (or knead on the counter by hand about 10 minutes).
  • Remove the dough, place in an oiled bowl and cover. Set in a warm place and allow to rise 60 minutes or until the dough has doubled.
  • Preheat the oven to 450°F and line baking pans with parchment paper. Bring water and baking soda to a boil.
  • Divide dough into 8 pieces and roll each piece into a 24" rope. Form the dough into a "U" shape. Cross the two ends over each other and fold down to the bottom of the U to form a pretzel shape. Repeat with remaining pretzels.
  • Gently place pretzels on a large spatula and lower into the boiling water. Let boil 10-15 seconds. Gently lift out of the water, let excess drip off and place on prepared pan allowing at least 2" between pretzels.
  • Brush each pretzel with egg was and sprinkle with salt.
  • Bake 12-14 minutes or until golden.

Notes

Yeast Use Active Dry Yeast. Check the expiry date on your yeast, if it's out of date your dough will not rise properly.
To Make without a Stand Mixer I use a stand mixer to knead the dough. If you don't have a stand mixer, you can knead on the counter for about 10 minutes.
To Boil the Pretzels place each on a large spatula and gently lower into the boiling water. Use a large slotted spoon to gently remove them from the water.
To Form into Pretzel Bites Divide dough into 4 pieces and roll into a 24" rope. Cut rope into 2" pieces. Boil as directed and bake for 9-11 minutes or until golden.
Egg Wash For a softer crust, use the whole egg. A wash made from egg white only and water will produce a harder, crisper exterior.
Topping Variations Try sesame seeds, everything bagel seasoning, cinnamon sugar or cheddar cheese & thinly sliced jalapenos.

Nutrition

Calories: 304 | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 654mg | Potassium: 103mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 210IU | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 3mg
Oven baked soft pretzels in a basket.
Oven baked soft pretzels in a basket.
Top image - oven baked soft pretzels ina basket. Bottom image - Pretzels formed on a baking sheet.

 

Classic Banana Bread {So Simple & Moist!}

Banana Bread is one of the most classic quick bread recipes out there. Overripe bananas (with lots of black/brown spots) are mixed with a handful of ingredients you likely have on hand already!

Mildly sweet and definitely moist, everyone loves this recipe!

Three slices of banana bread stacked with sliced banana bread in the background.

Homemade banana bread is the best way to start the day or end an afternoon with a nice cup of tea. Sweeter bread recipes, like zucchini bread or pumpkin bread, are always perfect for quick breakfasts, snacks, or desserts.

How Ripe Should Bananas be for Banana Bread?

Bananas are at their sweetest and ripest when they are nicely spotted and just about to turn soft.

If you notice your bananas are soft and don’t have time to make bread, peel them and freeze them. They can stay frozen for months and you will always be ready to make homemade banana bread.

To Ripen Bananas Quickly

Want banana bread or banana cake but your bananas are just barely yellow? No problem!

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place bananas on a baking sheet and bake 15 minutes. Cool completely and proceed with the recipe as directed.

Left image - banana bread dough in a bread pan before baking. Right image - Banana bread baked in a bread pan.

How to Make Banana Bread

  1. Combine dry ingredients together and set aside.
  2. Combine remaining ingredients together, stirring in bananas last.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir until barely mixed and bake (per recipe below).

Serve fresh out of the oven or heated slightly with butter for an easy and delicious snack!

Delicious Banana Bread Additions

Banana bread can be made even better with all of these add-ins.

TIP:  Toss the additions with a bit of flour before adding to the batter. This will help keep them from sinking to the bottom of the loaf.

  • Nuts (toasted walnuts or pecans)
  • Chocolate chips or peanut butter chips
  • Toffee pieces
  • Blueberries

Or try extra moist versions made with carrots or even zucchini!

Banana bread baked in a bread pan.

How To Store It

Quick bread is easy to store and will last about 5 days when stored properly.

Always keep wrapped in plastic wrap, foil, or in a zippered bag at room temperature.

To Freeze Banana Bread

Most quick breads are easily frozen, just make sure they are sealed well.

Freeze in a zippered bag or an airtight container labeled with the date on it. Frozen banana bread should be good for about eight weeks. Thaw at room temp and serve!

Quick Breads You’ll Love

 

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Classic Banana Bread

A mildly sweet and moist quick bread that everyone loves, this easy recipe for banana bread will be the one you'll want to reach for!
Course Bread, Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword banana bread
Servings 12 servings
Calories 221
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/3 cups mashed bananas about 4 small

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour (or line with parchment paper) a 9x5 loaf pan.
  • Combine flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a small bowl. Whisk to combine.
  • With a hand mixer on medium, combine butter and sugars in a medium bowl until fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well. Stir in mashed bananas.
  • Add dry ingredients and mix just until combined.
  • Pour into prepared loaf pan and bake 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Do not overbake.
  • Cool in the pan 5 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely on a rack.

Notes

To Ripen Bananas: Bake in a 350°F oven for 15 mins then allow to cool.

Nutrition

Calories: 221 | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 269mg | Potassium: 104mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 287IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg
Top image - three slices of banana bread topped with two pats of butter. Bottom image - Banana bread baked in a bread pan.
Three slices of banana bread stacked on top of each other.

Three slices of banana bread with a bite out of the top one. Topped with two pats of butter.

Homemade Pizza Dough {and Sauce!}

Homemade Pizza Dough is a quick and easy to make at home! This pizza dough recipe makes a traditional crust is sturdy enough to hold your favorite toppings!

It’s delicious with a slight chew, just the way a pizza crust should be!

Baked pizza made on homemade pizza dough cut into wedges.

Ingredients

    • WATER The water should be warm but not hot. If you have a thermometer, you want the water to be about 110°F.
    • YEAST This recipe uses active dry yeast. You can use instant yeast (or rapid rise) in this recipe as well, skip letting it sit in the water in this recipe if using instant yeast. (1 packet of yeast = 2 1/4 teaspoons)
    • SUGAR A pinch of sugar is needed to feed the yeast and help it bloom.
    • FLOUR I use all purpose flour in this recipe as it’s what we  most often have on hand. Add flour a bit at a time just until the dough is no longer sticky. If you add too much, the dough will be tough.
    • OLIVE OIL & SALT  Are added for flavor.

RISE TIME: This is a quick pizza dough and doesn’t require a long rise time. If you’d like you can allow it to rise for up to 1 hour before rolling out to fill the pizza pans. I  most often don’t rise the dough and just bake it as is.

How to Make Pizza Dough

The best pizza dough uses just a handful of ingredients you likely have in your pantry! Be sure to check the expiration dates on your yeast and make sure it’s still fresh before you use it. Fresh yeast means a good rise and a perfectly chewy crust.

  1. Mix the yeast and water in a bowl, let sit until the yeast starts to bubble up.
  2. Add three cups of flour to the mixture, one cup at a time until you get a nice dough that isn’t too sticky. Add a bit more flour if needed if your dough seems sticky.

Now that you have your dough, it’s time to knead!

Images of preparing pizza dough

How to Knead Pizza Dough

Kneading pizza dough takes a little bit of muscle but is so worth it in the end!

  • Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead the dough until it is smooth, adding more flour to keep it from sticking to your hands or work surface.
  • Knead the dough using two hands, pushing the dough away from you and then turning it 45° to the left, knead it some more, and then turn it another 45° until a full circle has been completed. It should only take about 6 minutes.
  • Roll and form the dough to fit the greased pizza pans or stones.  Let the dough rise.

After the dough has risen, poke holes all over the surface with a fork (this is called ‘docking’ and prevents the dough from bubbling up), then add sauce, cheese, toppings and then top with cheese before baking. Super simple and super fun!

Have a stand mixer? Let the mixer do the heavy lifting for you. Simply add the ingredients to the mixer with dough hook. Once combined, turn the mixer to medium high for about 4-5 minutes.

Pizza dough rolled out on a pizza pan, topped with sauce, cheese and pepperoni.

Make-Ahead

Pizza dough can be made hours ahead of time and stored in the fridge. Rest on the counter for about 20 minutes and then roll to fit pans. You can make a batch of the shortcut pizza sauce in the recipe below or use canned or another homemade pizza sauce.

To Freeze Pizza Dough

Freezing pizza dough is so easy and is a great way to always have pizza dough on hand!

  • To freeze, place dough ball into a zippered freezer bag. Frozen pizza dough balls can last up to 6 months in the freezer.
  • To thaw, let them come to room temp, place them on a floured surface and dust with flour. Knead a few minutes, then shape over a pizza stone or pan.

The best thing about frozen pizza dough is that there is no need to overly knead them since they will require a little kneading once they are thawed again!

A baked pepperoni pizza made with homemade pizza dough.

Delicious Pizza Recipes

Use it to make a classic Margherita pizza or load it up with topping like this cheeseburger pizza. Either way, it is sure to be delicious!

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Homemade Pizza Dough {and Sauce!}

This easy pizza dough recipe is perfect for baking or freezing!
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Keyword Pizza Dough
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 272
Author Holly Nilsson

Ingredients

DOUGH:

  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil divided use
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour or half all-purpose half whole wheat more as needed

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Mix the yeast and water in a small bowl, cover and let stand for about 5-10 minutes.
  • Mix the 2 tablespoons olive oil, sugar, salt and yeast mixture in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the 3 cups of flour, a cup at a time. If the dough seems sticky, add more flour, a couple tablespoons at a time.
  • Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead until moderately stiff, about six minutes.
  • If time allows, you can let the dough rise 1 hour at this point. If allowing to rise, punch the dough down before fitting in the pans below.
  • Lightly grease two pizza pans with oil. Roll out the dough and stretch to fill the pans.
  • Let the dough rise 10 minutes.
  • Brush pizza dough with remaining olive oil and top with pizza sauce, toppings and cheese as desired. Bake 15-18 minutes or until cheese is melted and crust is golden.

Notes

Note: You can allow up to 1 hour rise time for this dough but more often than not, I skip this step to make a quick dough.
Rising the dough will add a bit more flavor (and chew to the texture).
Shortcut Pizza Sauce: Place 28 oz canned diced tomatoes in a sieve and press out as much juice as possible. Place tomatoes, 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano, 3 tablespoons olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a blender or food processor. Pulse until smooth.
Nutrition includes dough only. Serving is 2 slices of pizza (if each pizza is cut into 8 slices). 

Nutrition

Calories: 272 | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 231mg | Potassium: 254mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 129IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 3mg

Adapted from The Food Nanny

Top image - baked pepperoni pizza. Bottom image - pizza dough formed into a ball.
Baked pepperoni pizza.
Close up of a baked pepperoni pizza.

Homemade Gnocchi Recipe {Just 4 Ingredients!}

This Gnocchi recipe is a fun project, and the results are positively perfect! Soft pillowy potato pasta, this needs just a few ingredients you likely have on hand like potato, egg and flour.

Simply make a dough, roll and boil!

A pan of gnocchi ready to serve

Potato gnocchi has just a few easy to find ingredients and, while it takes a bit of time, it’s not difficult to make. This particular gnocchi recipe is one I learned attending classes at our local culinary school and have made it ever since.

What Is Gnocchi?

Gnocchi is an Italian homemade pasta that resembles a little dumpling. At it’s most basic level it’s made with potato, egg, and flour. Several regions in Italy have their own variations with combinations of ricotta cheese, herbs, or spinach, the possibilities are endless.

Mashed potatoes and egg in a bowl to make dough for a gnocchi recipe

Shaping Gnocchi

The dough is rolled into ropes and cut into pieces. Each rope of dough is about 1/2″ to 3/4″ thick and then cut into 1/2″ pieces. The gnocchi dough is soft and delicate, so be gentle when working with it.

shaping potato gnocchi on a wood cutting board

Once cut into pieces, roll each gnocchi along the back of a fork to create ridges (you can purchase a gnocchi board but unless you make gnocchi frequently, a fork works just fine).

The purpose of creating ridges is to help the gnocchi “grab” the sauce it is mixed with.

shaping homemade gnocchi on a cuttingboard

How To Make Gnocchi

It’s really simple to make these pillowy little dumplings.

  1. Mix all the ingredients together except flour. Add flour a little at a time, until dough forms.
  2. After “resting” the dough, roll it out into long “ropes,” and cut per recipe instructions.
  3. Use a gnocchi board or even just a fork to create ridged pasta!

Tips for Perfection

  • Boil your potatoes but drain them very well. Baked potatoes work in this recipe too.
  • Leftover mashed potatoes aren’t ideal as they have other additives such as cream etc that will affect the consistency of your dough.
  • Ensure the potatoes are perfectly smooth once mashed
  • Add just enough flour to make a dough, excess flour can make tough gnocchi
  • Don’t overwork the dough, these should be soft and pillowy. Use a delicate touch.

Left image - potato gnocchi on a baking tray. Right image - Gnocchi in a strainer.

How To Cook Gnocchi

It takes just a few minutes to cook potato gnocchi!

  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a rolling boil.
  2. Gently add pasta and wait until it floats to the top (about 90 seconds).
  3. Transfer to a skillet with a bit of butter/olive oil and sauce if you’re using one. Toss the gnocchi and serve.

It’s that simple!

How To Serve It

It can be served as a side dish or as the first course in a full Italian style meal! For a very special experience, gnocchi can be served as the primo, or first course, in a full Italian meal consisting of several courses.

Sauces for Gnocchi:

 Of course, it’s always a treat to have homemade pasta as a side dish with chicken, beef, or fish!

More Perfect Pasta

You can’t go wrong with homemade potato gnocchi! No matter how you choose to serve it up, there is one thing you can count on: you won’t have any leftovers!

Gnocchi

This easy pasta recipe is made with just 4 simple ingredients!

  • 18 ounces potatoes (cooked and riced)
  • 2 tablespoons butter (melted)
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • 1/2 cup flour (+1/4 cup flour if needed)
  • salt (to taste)
  1. Combine riced potatoes, butter, and eggs in a bowl. Slowly mix in flour and knead until dough forms.

  2. Cover and rest 30 minutes at room temperature.
  3. Dust counter with flour and roll out a 1/2" to 3/4" thick rope of dough. Cut into 1/2" slices.

  4. Gently roll gnocchi pieces on a gnocchi board or the back of a fork to create ridges.

  5. Cook in boiling salted water, about 3 minutes, or until it begins to float.
  6. Remove from boiling water and transfer to an ice bath for about 1 min.
  7. Toss with oil and refrigerate until ready to serve.

A potato ricer is a tool that will produce perfectly fluffy lump-free potatoes. If you don’t have a ricer, be sure to mash your potatoes well so they are very smooth.

Top image - A serving of gnocchi tossed in pesto. bottom image - Cooked gnocchi in a strainer.
Homemade Gnocchi in a frying pan.
Gnocchi tossed with parmesan and pesto.

Everything Stuffed Chicken {With Cheddar & Cream Cheese}

Everything Cream Cheese Chicken incorporates all of the flavors from the famous “everything bagel” into a delicious chicken dinner!

In this recipe, chicken breasts are stuffed with a savory cream cheese filling, breaded with a real whole bagel, and a liberal dash of everything bagel seasoning!

This cheesy breaded chicken makes for a great meal served with a tossed salad and some veggies!

Everything stuffed chicken baked on a baking tray.

Ingredients

  • BAGEL BREAD CRUMBS A fresh bagel is made into crumbs for the perfect coating to this cream cheese chicken recipe. I use plain bagels but you can use any flavor (cheddar is great too). If you don’t have bagels, use Panko bread crumbs instead.
  • CHICKEN BREASTS Boneless/skinless are used in this recipe. Boneless chicken breasts can range in size from 5oz to 10oz so cooking time can vary, I use smaller 5oz breasts in this recipe.
  • CREAM CHEESE FILLING No “everything” dish would be complete without a cream cheese filling! A bit of cheddar adds extra flavor!
  • EVERYTHING BAGEL SEASONING This seasoning can be store bought or make your own everything seasoning here.

Bagels being pulsed in a food processor to make bread crumbs.

How to Make Cream Cheese Chicken

This one is a super cheesy chicken breast! Rather than rolling the chicken as you would in chicken cordon bleu, I prefer to butterfly the chicken like in these spinach stuffed chicken breasts.

  1. Grind the bagel (if using) in a food processor to make crumbs. Mix with everything bagel seasoning and set aside (you can use Panko bread crumbs if you prefer).
  2. Combine cream cheese filling mixture ingredients (per recipe below).

Chicken breasts stuffed with a cream cheese mixture.

  1. Slice chicken breasts lengthwise (but not all the way through) and open like a book. Fill the chicken and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Roll chicken in crumbs, sprinkle with more everything bagel seasoning and bake in pre-heated oven.

Two images showing everything stuffed chicken being breaded and

How Long To Cook Stuffed Chicken Breast

It takes longer for cream cheese filled chicken breast to cook than it does for just boneless baked chicken breasts. Cook for 35 to 40 minutes or until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F.

Serve Cream Cheese Chicken with…

Everything chicken goes with… well, everything!

You can’t go wrong with a side of mashed potatoes or crispy baked potato wedges.

Add in some veggies like green beans with bacon, roasted broccoli or even just a fresh tossed salad.

Baked Everything stuffed chicken on a wooden board.

Got Leftovers?

Leftover cream cheese chicken can be thinly sliced and topped onto a pile of greens for a healthy lunch. Or tuck some into a toasted Kaiser roll for a heartier meal.

  • To Freeze, store in an airtight container or zippered bag. Leftovers can be frozen up to 2 weeks!.
  • To Reheat, simply top with a little more everything bagel seasoning, a dash of salt and pepper. If heated in the microwave, the breading wont be crisp so I like to use the toaster oven or even microwave and broil for a few minutes.

Chicken Favorites

Everything Chicken

Chicken breasts are stuffed, baked with a smear of cream cheese, a real whole bagel, and a liberal dash of everything bagel seasoning!

  • 4 boneless chicken breasts (5 oz each)
  • 6 tablespoons spreadable herb and garlic cream cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 oz parmesan cheese
  • 2 oz sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 plain bagel (or 1 cup panko breadcrumbs)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons everything seasoning (divided)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.

  2. Break the bagel into small pieces and place in a blender or food processor. Pulse to create crumbs (don’t make them too fine).
  3. Combine the breadcrumbs with 2 tablespoons everything seasoning and olive oil. Mix well to combine. In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, garlic powder, parmesan cheese, and cheddar cheese.

  4. Cut each chicken breast lengthwise (so it opens like a book) but don't cut all the way through. Fill each breast with the cream cheese mixture. Season with salt & pepper.

  5. Mix beaten egg with 1 tablespoon of water. Dredge each chicken breast in the flour and dip into the beaten egg. Roll in the bagel crumbs and place on a baking sheet.

  6. Sprinkle with remaining everything seasoning.

  7. Bake on prepared pan for 35-40 minutes or until chicken reaches 165°F. Rest 5 minutes before serving.

Baked everything stuffed chicken on a wooden board.
Top image - everything stuffed chicken baked on a baking tray. Right image - breaded chicken on a baking pan.
Baked everything stuffed chicken.

Homemade Crescent Rolls {Tender & Flaky}

Homemade Crescent Rolls are so soft and buttery, you’ll never go back to the canned version again. This easy recipe yields perfectly fluffy rolls, full of real butter flavor! 

Don’t let the thought of yeast intimidate you! While it takes some time, these are not difficult to make.

A basket full of homemade crescent rolls

Tips For Making Crescent Rolls

Knowing a few tips for bread making can make the process easy

  • Use fresh yeast (and check the expiry date on your jar). Expired yeast won’t work well.
  • When adding the yeast to the water, ensure it is closer to lukewarm than hot.
  • It’s ok to add a little more or less flour to get the consistency you want. If the dough seems too sticky, add a little more flour at a time until it seems just right.
  • Get kids to help with the kneading! Every child should have the experience of making bread…at least once!
  • Use a pizza cutter to make the wedge shapes.
  • Roll wedges from the wide side first, and roll loosely. Curve into crescent shape after placing the roll on the parchment.

Most importantly: have fun!

Left image - dough rising in a glass bowl. Right image - dough rolled into a circle and cut into wedges.

How To Make Crescent Rolls

Recipes like this one take the intimidation out of making homemade bread. While there may be a few steps to follow, bear in mind that most of them are as easy as watching bread rise!

  1. Make the “sponge” (per recipe below) and mix all ingredients together in a large bowl (except flour).
  2. Slowly add flour until soft dough forms and knead until smooth.
  3. Allow it to rise until doubled in size. Then cut in half, roll out into circles and cut into wedges.
  4. Roll each wedge into a crescent and place on a tray to rise.
  5. Bake until golden brown!

Spread butter, garlic butter, or even homemade jam on these crescent and enjoy!  

Crescent rolls prepped on a parchment lined baking tray.

What To Make With Crescent Rolls

There are so many amazing recipes to make with crescent rolls! You can use them to make:

The options are endless!

A basket full of baked crescent rolls.

How To Freeze Homemade Crescent Rolls

To freeze before baking is so easy, and when it comes time to make the rolls no one will know they weren’t prepared the same day!

  • Make crescent rolls but instead of baking put them in the freezer, covered, on the baking tray.
  • After two hours, remove and place in a zippered freezer bag or airtight container for up to 6 months.
  • To bake, defrost rolls in the fridge completely (on a parchment-lined tray ready to bake is best), then bake according to recipe directions!

This is a recipe for rainy days or special occasions. Enjoy it with your loved ones anytime.

Homemade Crescent Rolls

This easy recipe yields perfectly soft and flaky crescent every time, full of delicious real butter flavor! 

  • 1 packet active dry yeast (or 2 1/4 teaspoon)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (plus 3 tablespoons)
  • 1/2 cup warm water (110°F)
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup warm milk (110°F)
  • 1 egg (room temperature)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/2 to 4 cups flour
  • milk for brushing
  1. Combine yeast, sugar, and warm water. Let sit for 10 mins or until foamy.

  2. Add melted butter and warm milk to a large bowl. Add yeast mixture, egg and salt. Stir in 2 cups of flour.
  3. Add flour 1/2 cup at a time to create a soft dough. Knead until smooth, about 5-7 minutes.
  4. Place dough in a greased bowl and cover. Let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
  5. Place dough on a lightly flour surface and divide in two. Roll each half into a 12″ circle and cut each circle into 12 wedges.
  6. Roll wedges into a crescent shape starting with the wide end. Place at least 2″ apart on a parchment lined pan. Cover with a kitchen towel and allow to rise 30-40 minutes.
  7. Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush with milk and bake rolls 10-12 minutes or until golden.

Top image - crescent rolls in a basket. Bottom image - crescent rolls prepped on a baking sheet.
Crescent rolls in a basket
Crescent rolls in a basket

Fluffy & Crispy Homemade Waffles

This Homemade Waffle Recipe is the perfect way to enjoy a lazy weekend morning! Using just a handful of ingredients you likely have in the pantry, these waffles are delicious drizzled with melted butter and syrup!

Four waffles stacked on top of each other on a white plate. Topped with butter and syrup.

Is Pancake Mix The Same as Waffle Mix?

Waffles and pancakes do not use the same batter. To make the best waffles, don’t use pancake mix. Sure you can cook pancake batter in your waffle iron, but they won’t have the same texture or flavor that classic waffles have.

A waffle batter uses more egg (plus we beat the whites separately and fold them in for the most fluffy waffles ever)! The extra egg makes for a crispy exterior surrounding a moist, custard-like interior that has lots of large air pockets.

Tip: For extra fluffy waffles, the egg whites are beaten until stiff peaks form and folded into the batter. This step only takes a few minutes and makes a big difference.

If you are short on time, you can skip this step but I highly recommend the extra few minutes!

Left image - waffle ingredients in glass bowls. Right image - fluffy waffle batter prepared in a glass bowl.

How to Make Waffles

This light, fluffy homemade waffle recipe is easy but only takes about 15 minutes of prep. Don’t worry, the rave reviews will make it worth the extra step of whipping the egg whites!

  1. Beat egg whites until stiff
  2. Mix dry with wet ingredients (per recipe below).
  3. Fold in whipped egg whites.
  4. Ladle batter into waffle iron and cook until lightly browned and crispy.

Serve with your favorite toppings.

Waffle batter on a waffle iron.

Best Waffle Toppings

Waffles are incredibly versatile and accommodating to so many different toppings.  They can be served as the bread in a gravy-rich meal, or as a dessert.

Leftovers

Be sure to cook up all the batter, because waffles store well in the fridge or freezer, and are easy to revive in the microwave, toaster or oven for quick breakfasts or even snacks.

  • To Store: Cool completely before storing in freezer bags or containers. They will keep up to two weeks in the refrigerator, and up to four-six months in the freezer.
  • To Reheat: Just remove as many as you need and place straight into the toaster oven on the medium or light setting until heated through. They can burn easily, so keep an eye on them.

Yummy Breakfast Options

Homemade Waffles

Nothing beats them for home-cooked comfort and making the kids or weekend guests feel special.

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 eggs (divided)
  • 1 2/3 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup melted butter (or oil)
  1. Preheat waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions.
  2. Place flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in a bowl. Whisk to combine.
  3. In a small bowl, mix egg yolks, milk and butter. Set aside.
  4. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites with a mixer on medium high speed until stiff peaks form. *see note

  5. Add egg yolk to flour mixture and stir to combine. Fold in egg whites.
  6. Drop by large spoonfuls onto greased waffle iron, close the lid and cook about 3-5 minutes.

Beating the egg whites and folding them in makes the fluffiest waffles. This recipe can be made without beating the egg whites as well. If you do not beat the egg whites, reduce milk to 1 1/2 cups and add whole eggs to the butter mixture.

Buttermilk Waffles

To make buttermilk waffles, reduce baking powder to 1 1/2 teaspoons and add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda. Replace milk with buttermilk.

Top image - a stack of waffles with butter on top. Bottom image - Waffle batter on a waffle iron.
A stack of waffles with butter and syrup on top.
Top image - a stack of waffles with butter and syrup on top. Bottom image - waffle batter on a waffle iron.

Homemade Pancakes {From Scratch!}

If you are looking for the best pancake recipe to make from scratch, you’ve found it! A simple combination of ingredients you likely have on hand (flour, milk, eggs, baking powder) makes these easy pancakes the perfect breakfast!

Fluffy, flavorful and delicious.

Syrup being poured on top of a stack of homemade pancakes.

Tips for Perfection

  • Heat Cook over medium heat. It takes longer but the results are better (a non-stick skillet works best).
  • Oil Oil the pan and allow it to heat up. Before making the frist batch, give it a gentle wipe with paper towels to remove any big blobs of oil. This will give you perfectly browned pancakes.
  • Consitency The batter should be slightly lumpy (image below) and should pour easily but should not be runny.
    • If it’s too thick add milk a tablespoon or two at a time.
    • If it’s too runny or you’ve accidentally added too much liquid, you can add a bit of flour to get the right consistency.
  • Flip Flip the pancakes with a spatula once bubbles begin to form and the bubbles near the edges start to pop.
  • Mix Ins Add your mix ins on top of the pancakes once you’ve poured the batter into the skillet instead of stirring them into the batter. This keeps  mixins from burning onto the pan.

Pancake batter ingredients in a glass bowl before and after being mixed.

How to Make Pancakes (from scratch)

You’ll love how simple it is to whip these up. It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3!

  1. Mix dry ingredients together with a whisk (this adds air to the flour, almost like sifting it).
  2. Whisk wet ingredients together thoroughly with the melted butter.
  3. Make a well in the middle of the flour mixture and pour wet ingredient mixture in. Mix, but not too much, your batter should be a bit lumpy!

How to Cook Pancakes

Test an electric griddle or pan for temperature. Spill a droplet of water onto the surface and if it sizzles, it’s ready but don’t make it too hot or the pancakes will burn before they’re cooked in the middle!

  1. Pour 1/4 cup of batter into pan.
  2. Wait until bubbles form in the middle and they just begin to pop along the edges. The edges should be a little bit browned.
  3. Flip and cook the other side.

You can do a few at a time or more, depending on how big your cooking surface is. It’s easy. Transfer pancakes to a warm (200°F) oven. Just have an open casserole dish waiting in the oven to receive the freshly cooked flapjacks! That way they stay nice and hot, and you can serve them all at once at the table along with other fixings.

Fluffy pancakes cooking in a frying pan.

Make Ahead/How to Reheat Pancakes

I often keep a batch of homemade pancake mix in my cupboard to make pancakes easy but on weekdays we like to have them ready to go so all they need is warming.

Pancakes can be refrigerated for up to 5 days and kept in the freezer for 2 months. Just seal them in a freezer bag or an airtight container for storage (with a piece of parchment in between).

To Reheat Pancakes

Toaster: Pop homemade pancakes straight into the toaster. And it makes them a tiny bit crisp which is delicious.

Microwave: The microwave works too, just heat about 20-30 seconds for 1 serving.

A stack of homemade pancakes with two pats of butter and syrup on top.

Easy Breakfast Recipes

Fluffy Pancakes

The best pancake recipe to make from scratch. These are fluffy and so easy to make!

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 3/4 cups milk (or as needed)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter (or vegetable oil)
  1. Whisk milk, eggs and melted butter.

  2. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and whisk.
  3. Create a well in the middle and add wet ingredients. Stir just until combined, batter should look slightly lumpy. It should be slightly thick but should still be able to pour fairly smoothly. You may need to add a bit more milk.

  4. Preheat a griddle or frying pan over medium heat (or to 350°F). Lightly grease with butter or olive oil.

  5. Pour 1/4 cup batter for each pancake and cook on one side until bubbles form and begin to pop, about 2 minutes. Flip and cook on the other side about 1-2 minutes.

To Make Large Batches: If making large batches, preheat the oven to 175°F and keep a baking sheet in the oven. Keep pancakes warm on the baking sheet.

To Make Whole Wheat Pancakes: Substitute 1/2 cup of white flour for wheat flour.

To Make Ahead: Cook and cool pancakes. Separate pancakes with a layer of waxed paper and place in a freezer bag. Reheat in the microwave, toaster or oven

Favorite Pancake Toppings

My kids’ absolute favorite thing to do to pancakes, is to spread them with seedless raspberry jam, then drizzle warmed up heavy cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon over them. Trust me when I say this is actually a delicious combination! Other favorite toppings include:

  • Butter and real maple syrup, of course!
  • Whipped cream and honey… delicious on crepes, too!
  • Sliced strawberries… or blackberries, raspberries, blueberries…or all four!!
  • Various kinds of jam with clotted cream!
  • Nutella… this is basically like having dessert for breakfast!

 

Top image - syrup being poured on top of a stack of homemade pancakes. Bottom image - pancakes cooking in a frying pan.
Top image - syrup being poured on top of a stack of pancakes. Bottom image - pancake batter in a glass bowl.
Syrup being poured on top of a stack of homemade pancakes.

Easy Walnut Rugelach Recipe

Rugelach Cookies are delicious pastry-like cookies that are as fun to make as they are to eat. A flakey and slightly chewy dough wrapped around a sweet nutty filling and topped with crunchy coarse sugar or a sprinkle of powdered sugar if you like.

Serve them for dessert, enjoy with coffee or serve them with your holiday favorites like gingerbread cookies and shortbread cookies.

A serving plate stacked full of rugelach.

What is Rugelach?

Rugelach are bite-sized pastries made with butter and cream cheese dough wrapped around sweet fillings of various kinds. The dough is rolled and cut into triangles, spread with filling and each cookie is rolled up in the style of a mini crescent roll.

These tasty pastries trace their origins to eastern European Jewish cuisine and are standard fare in Jewish bakeries all over the world.

Left image - nut filling ingredients in a glass bowl. Right image - pastry dough topped with jam and nut filling.

How to Make Rugelach

Easy rugelach dough is a rich mixture of flour and fat. Here’s how to make this rugelach recipe:

  1. Prepare the dough and while it is chilling, mix up the nut filling.
  2. Roll dough into circles about the thickness and diameter of a pie crust.
  3. Spread dough with jam and nut filling and cut into wedges.
  4. Roll each wedge toward the pointed side.
  5. Top with course sugar and bake until slightly browned.

As you can see, there are multiple steps but they aren’t difficult and these pretty treats are easy to make!

Rugelach pastry topped with jam and nut fillings and being rolled into mini crescent rolls.

To Prep Ahead

Rugelach can be made ahead. These are the 3 best ways I like to store them:

  • Assemble before baking You can assemble the cookies and freeze for baking later. Freeze on a cookie sheet and then transfer to freezer bags when hardened. Thaw on a cookie sheet at room temperature before baking.
  • Freeze Dough Or, you can freeze only the dough for later use. Just roll it out, layered between two sheets of wax paper. Then roll it up, wrap in plastic, and store in a freezer bag. It will keep up to six months.
  • Freeze Baked Cookies Bake cookies as directed below and cool completely. Freeze in an air tight container up to 4 months.

Other Delicious Rugelach Fillings

You don’t have to limit your options to my walnut and pecan filling. All kinds of yummy fillings work equally well in rugalach. Here are some popular ones:

  • Poppyseed pastry filling
  • Marzipan
  • Fruit preserves like apricot, fig or raspberry
  • Apple with cinnamon and sugar
  • Brown sugar-cinnamon streusel
  • Chocolate chips

Delicious Pastry Dessert

Walnut Rugelach

Rugelach are delicious pastry-like cookies that are fun to make and utterly satisfying to eat.

  • 1/2 cup butter (softened)
  • 4 oz cream cheese (softened)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • 1 tablespoon cream
  • 1/4 cup raspberry jam (or apricot)
  • 2 tablespoons coarse sugar

Filling

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1/4 cup walnuts ground (coarsely ground)
  • 1/4 cup pecans (coarsely ground)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup raisins or currants (finely chopped , optional)
  1. Combine butter, cream cheese, vanilla and salt with a mixer on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Add sugar.
  2. Turn mixer to low and add flour just until combined.
  3. Divide dough in half and refrigerate 1 hour.

  4. Combine filling ingredients in a small bowl.
  5. Remove one half of the dough from the fridge and roll into a 10″ circle.
  6. Spread the dough with the preserves and sprinkle 1/2 of the filling over top.
  7. Cut the circle into 12 even wedges. Starting at the wide edge, roll each wedge crescent roll style.
  8. Whisk together egg and cream. Brush over each cookie and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Place on a prepared pan.
  9. Repeat with remaining dough and chill 45 minutes.
  10. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  11. Bake cookies 28-30 minutes or until lightly browned.

A serving plate stacked full of rugelach.
A serving plate stacked full of rugelach.
Top photo - A serving plate stacked full of rugelach. Bottom photo - Rugelach pastry topped with jam and nut fillings and being rolled into mini crescent rolls.