Some people dread the holidays for one, specific reason – preparing a menu the entire family will love can feel a bit like rocket science, especially when you have a toddler (or a husband who eats like a toddler). But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Notoriously delicious and decadent, Valentine’s Day is the perfect occasion for all of us hardworking mamas to break out our inner Martha Stewarts, roll up our sleeves, and get a little creative in the kitchen. But that doesn’t mean we have to kill ourselves. With these simple, semi-homemade recipes, you’ll be able to spoil your family from breakfast to dessert, and even have time for a (quick) shower! Sounds like a win-win to me.
Chocolate Cream Cheese Muffins
Adapted from www.therecipecritic.com
- 1 ¼ cups all purpose flour
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 1 large egg
- 4 ounces cream cheese (softened)
Crumb Topping Ingredients
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons butter
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a muffin tin with paper muffin liners. (This recipe makes about 12 muffins.) Have fun with this – use pink or red or Valentine’s themed papers if you have them. Next, whisk together the flour, ½ cup of sugar, the baking powder, and the salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, cocoa, food coloring, oil, and the egg. Combine the wet and dry ingredients until just moistened. In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese and remaining ¼ cup sugar, and then fold into the muffin batter. Don’t over mix! You want to be able to see the cream cheese. Transfer the swirly, cream cheese batter to the muffin tin. Combine the crumb topping ingredients in a bowl, then sprinkle evenly on top of each muffin. Bake 17 to 20 minutes. Want to really be decadent? Serve with chocolate or strawberry milk. Or you could serve with hot chocolate. Yum!
Individual Heart Shaped Pizzas
- A package of your favorite biscuit dough
- A jar of your favorite store-bought pizza sauce
- Shredded mozzarella cheese
- Any other pizza toppings your family is sure to love
Open the can of biscuit dough. Flatten the dough from one biscuit onto a baking sheet, and form into the shape of a heart. Don’t stress if it isn’t perfect – it will still taste delicious, I promise! Pour some pizza sauce onto the biscuit and spread with a spoon. Cover with cheese and pizza toppings. Follow the cooking directions on the biscuit packaging – you may have to adjust for the pizza toppings. Seriously, who doesn’t love pizza? Allow to cool completely before digging in!
Magnolia Bakery Inspired Sugar Cookies
- A package of your favorite store-bought sugar cookie dough
- Heart shaped cookie cutter
- Rolling pin and flour for dusting
Buttercream Frosting Ingredients
- 1 cup (2 sticks) of butter
- 6 to 8 cups confectioners’ sugar
- ½ cup milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Red food coloring
Roll out the sugar cookie dough. Dust the rolling pin with flour to avoid sticking! Use the cookie cutter to cut out individual heart shaped cookies, and place them on a baking sheet. Follow the cooking directions on the cookie dough packaging. While they are baking, combine the butter, 4 cups sugar, milk, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on a medium speed until smooth and creamy, approximately 3 to 5 minutes. Gradually add the remaining sugar – 1 cup at a time – beating for about 2 minutes after each addition, until icing reaches desired consistency. You may not need all the sugar. Add food coloring to reach the desired shade of red or pink. Allow the cookies to cool completely before icing. These cookies are also adorable packaged in cellophane bags, tied up with ribbon, and perfect for handing out as Valentine’s goodies!
About the author…Born and raised in Southeast Texas, Jessica currently lives in Billings, Montana with her husband Tyler, her two year old daughter Savannah, and their newest addition Emma Kate (one year this month). Jessica graduated from Texas Christian University with a degree in Broadcast Journalism. A blogger, writer, and photographer, Jessica owns Jessica Morgan Creative Services, and works as a licensed Realtor for Metro Realtors West LLP.