Experience Bacon in Virtual Reality with Hormel Black Market

Written by Lillian Tram on November 15th, 2016

 

Bacon

 

As if we need any more reason to love all things pork-related, Hormel has come up with a new way for people to experience bacon. It’s called the Black Market, and it offers a virtual reality environment where customers can explore dark, Dali-inspired spaces that are brightened up by digital pieces of bacon.

 

You can access the Black Market by going to BlackLabelBacon.com on your smartphone’s web browser — no need to download an app. I didn’t use any other gadget when I opened the website; I simply held my phone up at eye level directly in front of me and navigated through the site’s content.

 

However, it’s better to use VR viewers to enjoy the virtual landscapes and fully immerse yourself in the experience. Hormel has created the Bacon Virtual Reality Viewer, which was based on the Google Cardboard’s design and came with a bacon-scented scratch-and-sniff sticker. The viewer was available for free, but supplies quickly ran out since they were limited in number. Still, if you have the standard Google Cardboard, you’re good to go.

 

 

So what is Black Market all about? Well, the main objective is to find your way around the virtual landscape and look for 3D pieces of bacon. Once you locate the “prize”, you’ll be given a one-use coupon, which will let you enjoy a discount when you purchase bacon through the VR content.

 

The Black Market comes with four worlds you can explore, and each of them leads to a different variety of Hormel’s Black Label bacon. If you like things hot and spicy, for instance, check out Jalapeño Volcano to end up with a coupon for Hormel’s Jalapeno Thick Cut Bacon. The other three worlds are named Salty Sea, Cherry Woods, and The Vastness of Variety, all of which correspond to various Hormel products.

 The Black Market Bacon

I think the Black Market is something that every bacon fan and pork lover should explore at least once. For one thing, it gives us an introduction into virtual reality, which is set to become the norm for gaming and entertainment in the coming years. It’s a complete sensory experience, particularly if you were lucky enough to get the Bacon Virtual Reality Viewer. You’ll get to immerse yourself in a world full of bacon imagery and sounds while getting a whiff of a smoky-meaty scent. It’s the next-best thing to eating real bacon!

 

Of course, having access to the discount coupons doesn’t hurt! As someone who loves eating bacon for breakfast (and lunch and dinner if I could get away with it), I don’t mind shaving a few dollars off my bacon expenditure. I could use those extra bucks to buy bacon-inspired books or even throw a bacon-themed party!

 

However, I think the biggest reason to check out the Black Market is simply that it pays homage to one of the most delicious foods of all time. It’s not every day that developers create a website that’s wholly dedicated to bacon and is basically a shrine to the most popular pork-based treat.
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Bacon Macarons Are The Bomb-Diggity

Written by Lillian Tram on June 16th, 2016

 

Ok, I’ve got a new obsession.

 

Remember how, in the last few years, all sorts of restaurants and chefs and food chains started putting bacon in, well, everything? And we all enjoyed bacon in our sundaes, and bacon on every sandwich, and bacon for breakfast, lunch, and dinner? Pretty darn cool, right?

 

Well this is going to top it!

 

Check out these awesome candied bacon macarons that I recently found!

 

They say that America is a melting pot of all cultures and peoples, and, uh, I guess our food is a melting pot of all sorts of unique combinations, too, because this is a new one for me!

 

Just when you thought bacon couldn’t be put in any more combinations with other foods, life finds a way! And just when you thought macarons couldn’t get any tastier (because, let’s be honest, they were good to begin with), life finds a way!

 

I just can’t wait to see what they put bacon on next. Maybe there should be a contest. Hmm…

 

 

If you’re curious, the macaron started in France about two hundred years ago, when Catherine de Medici’s Italian pastry chef’s started playing around in the kitchen after she married France’s King Henry II.

 

The macaron we all know and love today evolved in the early 1900s in Paris as a patisserie called Laduree, where a famous French chef named Pierre Desfontaines created the idea of two discs filled with butter cream (and now, bacon!).

 

Not surprisingly, because it’s delicious, the macaron quickly made its way to America and I’d say we are all a little better for it.

 

 

Around the world, macarons are also really popular in Switzerland, Korea, and Japan, as these countries adopted them and incorporated some of their own unique food and cultural ideas.

 

So, anyways, back to bacon: what’s the coolest food that you have seen involving a new twist that includes bacon? I’m always on the look out for more bacon-wrapped whatever, and you know I’m interested to hear what you’ve found in your neck of the woods.

Ever Heard of a Pig Pickin’ Cake? Here’s the Recipe!

Written by Lillian Tram on March 18th, 2016

Living in southeast Missouri, this would be called a not-so-typical typical Mandarin Orange Cake, but in other areas of the United States this delicious dessert is known as something quite different. In the Carolinas, and a few other Eastern states, this would be called a Pig Pickin’ Cake.
 

What On Earth is a Pig Pickin’ Cake?

 
Orange Layer Cake, Mandarin Orange Cake, Pig Pickin Cake
 
You aren’t the first person to ask that question and it’s a safe bet that you won’t be the last, either. The name of this cake dates back to an unknown time (all I know is it was a long time ago!) when it was popular to roast a pig while holding a barbeque, especially in North and South Carolina.
 
The whole pig is roasted, choosing from any number of roasting methods including barrels, grills and the ground, until the meat is practically falling off of the bone. What doesn’t fall from the bone is pulled – which is where the first pulled pork originated from – yum!
 
I don’t have to tell you about all of the delicious barbeque side dishes that can easily be found at any Southern barbeque; they were all laid out to go with this delicious pulled pork! I’m sure there was no shortage of baked beans, potato salad, cole slaw, macaroni salad and…
 

desserts! Like this delicious pig pickin’ cake!

 
You can look up the old recipes for this yummy pig pickin’ cake and find it underneath many other names as well. Bell’s Best alone lists this cake under three: Pea Pickin’ Cake, Pig Pickin’ Cake and Mandarin Orange Cake …and there are plenty more! Some more names this cake has earned include the following:
 
Pig Cake, Pig Pickin’ Good Cake, Pig Lickin’ Cake, Pig Eatin’ Cake, Pineapple Cake, Orange Pineapple Layer Cake, Pineapple Orange Cake, Celestial Snow Cake, Summer Cake, Sunshine Cake, Okoboji Sunrise, Better than Sex Cake or as Paula Deen says… Not Better Than Sex Cake. I’m sure we can find even more if we try.
 

The Yummy Pig Inspired Cake Recipe

 
Upon hearing the name Mandarin Orange Cake, some people will mistakenly expect an orange cake but this recipe was never intended to be such. While there is mandarin oranges in the batter, these are meant to provide moisture and tenderness …but a distinctive orange flavor? Not so much. Most will love this recipe but a few may call it bland, and be disappointed at the cake’s lack of complexity.
 
Just as many others have likely done, you can easily alter the recipe to suit your personal taste. This is how the Pig Pickin’ Cake has so many variations, I’m sure. Some options to consider include adding orange juice to the mix, tossing in some orange extract or zest, putting more orange and less pineapple flavor in the frosting, or maybe folding in some softened cream cheese.
 
Too many changes though, and you’ll be making something completely different… like Orange Chiffon Cake. Another great recipe but not the cake for pickin’ pigs, right?  Oh and by the way, traditionally the Pig Pickin’ Cake is made in layers – anywhere from two to four will do quite nicely! Anyway, here is the recipe:
 

Recipe: Mandarin Orange Pig Pickin’ Cake

 
 MaNdarin orange cake, pig pickin cake
 
Yield: Approximately 12 slices
 
Cake Ingredients:
 
1 box of butter style yellow cake mix (I recommend Duncan Hines Butter Recipe)
1/3 cup of vegetable or canola oil
3 large eggs
1 (11 or 15 ounce) can of mandarin oranges, undrained
 
Frosting Ingredients:
 
1 (4-1/2 serving size) package of instant vanilla pudding
1 (20 ounce) can of crushed pineapple, undrained
1 (16 ounce) carton of whipped topping (like Cool Whip)
Sprig of fresh mint, for garnish, optional
 
Directions:
 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and butter three 8 or 9 inch round cake pans. Flour the pans or line them with parchment paper and set aside.
 
Add together the cake mix, oil and eggs using the bowl of your stand mixer. Mix on low speed just until blended.
 
Reserving a couple of the oranges for garnish, add the remaining oranges with their juice and blend on low before increasing to medium speed for about two minutes.
 
Divide the batter evenly into three prepared cake pans and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until it passes the toothpick test.
 
Allow cake to cool in the round pans for 15 minutes, then turn them out onto a cake rack to finish cooling.
 
Blend together instant pudding and crushed pineapple before setting aside for five minutes.
 
Gently fold in the whipped topping and spread in between each of the layers. Then frost the sides and top.
 
Garnish the top of the cake with a mint sprig and the orange segments you reserved.
 
Cover and refrigerate until serving. After serving, store leftover cake in the refrigerator.
 

Changing This Recipe? Consider Coconut

 
Without a doubt, your family will love this recipe – and the name! If you decide to alter the recipe a bit, consider the addition of coconut, either as an ingredient (I recommend about 1/2 cup to the batter and 1/2 cup to the frosting) or a garnish
 
…and don’t forget the cherries. They’ll look amazing with the coconut!
 
 
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Turn Leftover Ham and Beans into Fried Bean Cakes

Written by Lillian Tram on March 9th, 2016

Everyone knows that beans are a great source of protein. Toss some ham into the pot and whip up some tasty jalapeno cornbread for a delicious and affordable meal. The next night, you might be able to pass these yummy beans off as a side dish with steak or chops.

If by the third day, you’ve still got ham and beans in the pot, do you toss them out or repurpose them again? Well, I guess that would depend upon how many people you’re feeding and how much cash is in your grocery budget.

What to Do with Leftover Ham and Beans?

 

ham and brown beans, ham recipe

Last week, I cooked a delicious bone-in ham for the family and they were delighted. I’d have to say it was quite yummy, especially thanks to the pineapple and brown sugar glaze. When everyone was finished, I put the leftovers away.

One Ziploc bag held the leftover ham pieces and chunks, while the other held a big ole ham bone. I put them both in the freezer until just the right time for a big ole pot of brown beans and ham.

Saturday, I used the ham pieces and chunks after soaking some pinto beans. They were so good, especially with the jalapeno corn bread I whipped up. (I made muffins this time – kids loved them, thought they were cupcakes until they took a sizeable bite!)

So the family scarfed them down and the leftover beans were tucked away in the fridge for another meal.

ham and brown beans, bean cakes, recipe

Sunday, those yummy beans became a side dish to some yummy skillet braised ribs and cabbage (see pic above – they were awesome …and fall apart tender!) and again, the family ate them without complaint. Now, it is day number three and I have to find a way to stretch April’s food budget as far as I can – and get rid of these beans!

Recipe for Fried Pinto Bean Cakes

 

ham and brown beans, bean cakes recipe

So, tonight I am making fried chicken with mashed potatoes and gravy, and I found a nifty how-to video on YouTube to help me get those beans past my family one more night. (Wish me luck!) You can see the video here or I will walk you through the steps, below.

(The recipe in the video only requires one ingredient: self-rising flour. I was pretty sure my family would want something with a little more flavor so I opted for a different recipe, below.)

Again, super easy and all you really need is a few ingredients, which is great for pinching pennies. Well, and those leftover beans.

Leftover Fried Bean Cakes

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cups seasoned pinto beans, drained

Combine all of the ingredients, except the beans. Add the beans last and stir lightly, just until combined. A seasoned cast iron skillet is recommended but any non-stick skillet will do the trick. Add a small amount of bacon fat and heat skillet on medium high heat.

ham and brown beans, bean cakes, recipe

Pour the bean cake batter into the skillet and cook about a minute or so per side. (Pretend like you’re making small pancakes) Mine were about the size of a large biscuit. Just like a pancake, the batter will bubble and rise. Don’t mash it and don’t mess with it. Allow the cake to get a nice golden brown before turning; repeat.

ham and brown beans, bean cakes, recipe

These turned out to be quite yummy and it turns out, they are good with whatever condiments your family prefers. If you aren’t making gravy, ketchup hot sauce and syrup are all great runners up.

Unfortunately, even after all these menu changes, there’s still a little bit of beans in the pot. I guess the doggy finally gets to eat some leftover ham and beans. Or I could try another recipe I found, which promises to be great with salsa and sour cream.

Pork Inspired Recipes to Make and Share

Written by Lillian Tram on January 16th, 2016

Wow. Can you believe the weather we are having? When’s winter gonna get here?!
 
 
I’ve been on strike since the Christmas baking frenzy ended, using only the rangetop portion of my stove to cook, but the month of January is half gone and that means I am once again getting the urge to bake. Cookies. It’s all I can think about.
 
 
But I only like the soft kinds. Enter the Maple Bacon Bourbon and Pecan Cookie… it’s delightful and I am in love. Definitely think you oughta bookmark this page for next Christmas because you’re gonna want to make these cookies again – and soon!
 
 
maple bacon bourbon pecan cookies pork recipes recipe delicious easy simple
 
 

Maple Bacon Bourbon and Pecan Cookie Recipe

 
 
Ingredients:
 
 
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
 
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
 
2 eggs
 
1 teaspoon of maple extract
 
2 tablespoons of your favorite bourbon
 
2 ¼ cups of all-purpose flour
 
1 teaspoon of salt – optional
 
1 teaspoon of baking soda
 
2 cups of pecan pieces
 
½ cup of crispy bacon pieces or approximately 8 ounces
 
 
Directions:
 
 
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare two sheet pans with parchment paper or silpats.
 
In a standing mixer bowl, cream together the butter and granulated sugar until fluffy.
 
Add the eggs and combine well; next, add the maple extract and bourbon and combine very well.
 
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking soda. Add the dry ingredients to the batter and mix until dough is sticky.
 
Fold in the pecan pieces and bacon and mix the batter well.
 
Scoop cookie dough by spoonfuls onto prepared sheet pans and bake for approximately 12 minutes at 350 degrees.
 
Cool on cookie racks and store in airtight containers, such as Tupperware or Rubbermaid.
 
 
Preparation time: 10 minutes
 
 
Cooking time: 12 minutes
 
 
 

And another pork recipe for you….

 
 
There’s no such thing as leftover cookies at my house (what an oxymoron, right?) but let’s just pretend for a moment that, hypothetically, you have enough to make the recipe below.
 
 
pork recipe recipes bacon tenderloin sliders delicious easy simple
 
 

Cookie Crusted Pork Tenderloin Sliders Recipe

 
 
Ingredients:
 
 
Cookies, made according to recipe above
 
1 cup breadcrumbs
 
1/3 cup prepared brown mustard
 
Salt and pepper
 
One 3-pound pork tenderloin, cut in half lengthwise
 
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
 
24 slider buns
 
Optional:
 
Mayonnaise
 
Sliced onions
 
Lettuce
 
 
Directions:
 
 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees  and line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
 
Break the cookies into large chunks. Next, combine cookies and breadcrumbs together and pulse in food processor until crumbly. Remove two cups of the crumbs and place on a separate baking sheet.
 
In a small bowl, stir together the mustard and a dash of the salt and pepper. Coat tenderloins with mustard mixture and roll in cookie crumbs mixture. Place on the prepared baking sheet.
 
Bake until a meat thermometer inserted in the tenderloin registers about 155 degrees F, which should take approximately 25 to 35 minutes. Remove tenderloin from the oven and let stand 10 minutes before slicing.
 
To serve, thinly slice the tenderloin crosswise and place on bottom buns with 1 or 2 teaspoons of cranberry sauce on the underside. Top the sliced pork with mayonnaise, onions and lettuce, if you like.
 
Then cover with the bun top and serve warmed, or room temperature.
 
 
Preparation time: 20 minutes
 
 
Cooking time: 30-32 minutes
 
 

Enjoy these recipes! More to come very soon (smile!).

 
 
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Grits and Greens Recipes with Yummy Bacon!

Written by Lillian Tram on January 12th, 2016

While I should have shared these recipes earlier so you could enjoy them on New Year’s Day, it’s not too late to cook these bacon inspired recipes up for the family. The first recipe is a Grits and Greens Casserole which was adapted from a Trisha Yearwood recipe, and can easily please a small crowd.
 
 

Bacon Recipes for the New Year

 
 

#1 – Grits and Greens Casserole

 
 
bacon recipe recipes grits and greens directions how to make
 
 

Serves 10

 

Ingredients:

 
Nonstick cooking spray
2 cups half-and-half
8 cups chicken stock
2 cups old fashioned grits
6 slices bacon, cut into small pieces
1 finely chopped medium Vidalia sweet onion
One 16-ounce package frozen collard greens, thawed
1 3/4 (6 oz.) cups grated Parmesan
1/2 cup (one stick) unsalted butter
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese
 
 

Directions:

 
Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9×13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. In a large pot, combine the half-and-half and 6 cups of the chicken stock; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, stir in grits and return to a boil.
 
Reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer, stirring frequently, until the mixture has slightly thickened, about 10 to 15 minutes. Use a whisk to break up any lumps that have formed.
 
In another large saucepan, cook bacon over medium-high heat until just turning crispy, about 7 minutes. Remove the bacon and allow to drain on a paper towel.
 
Using the same saucepan, add onions to the leftover bacon drippings and saute until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add collard greens and the remaining 2 cups chicken stock and cook until tender, another 10 minutes. Drain the collards and onions in a colander.
 
Once the grits are cooked, add Parmesan, butter, salt, pepper and 1/2 cup of the Monterey jack. Stir until the butter has melted and all the ingredients are well combined. Add the drained collards mixture and stir.
 
Transfer the grits mixture to the prepared baking dish and top with the crumbled bacon and the remaining 1/2 cup Monterey jack. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly, about 15 minutes.
 
 
The second recipe has a name I love: Good for the Soul Green Beans. Both recipes are sure to soothe your taste buds and give your crew something to talk about for some time!
 
 

 #2 – Good for the Soul Green Beans

 
 

bacon recipe recipes how to directions good for the soul green beans

 
 

Serves 6 to 8

 

Ingredients:

 
4 or 5 cups of green beans, fresh & trimmed
1/4 lb. Jimmy Dean sage sausage, cooked
1/4 lb. smoked hog jowl, chopped
1/2 cups pearl onions
1 Tbsp. garlic cloves, chopped
1 tsp. crushed red pepper
Sea salt to taste
 
 

Directions:

 
Sauté hog jowl and sausage in a heated pot for three minutes. Add garlic and sauté for an additional minute.
 
Next, add enough water to cover the meat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes. Don’t rush: this step seasons the water!
 
Add green beans, onions, pepper and salt to the pot and just enough water to again cover the green beans.
 
Simmer this soul food for an additional hour or so before serving to develop the flavor.
 

Black Eyed Peas with Ham Hocks and Collard Greens Recipe

Written by Lillian Tram on December 31st, 2015

It’s the first day of the New Year (Happy New Year, by the way!) and some important decisions must be made regarding the first meal of 2016, especially if you live in the south. There are certain traditions we southerners adhere to for the promise of good health and fortune in the year to come, such as eating hog jowl, greens (symbolizing money) and yes – even black-eyed peas for luck.

new years day

Black-Eyed Peas With Ham Hocks

and Collard Greens

Cooking this New Year’s Day southern feast takes about two hours and yields enough for a moderately sized family to chow down on, especially if you add other traditional holiday dishes such as the fried hog jowl. Your black eyed peas are believed to bring good luck to those who eat them on New Year’s day and adding greens to the meal is supposed to increase the luck they bring. 

Simmer the black eyed peas and collards with onion and a big meaty ham hock or other options such as salt pork, bacon, pig feet, hog jowl and ham bones, will leave your black-eyed peas perfectly seasoned, southern style. If you love a little bit of spice for your New Year’s Day meal, include a bit of hot pepper and spices.

ham hocks

INGREDIENTS

2 pounds black-eyed peas, soaked overnight if possible
2 pounds smoked ham hock, meaty ham bone or slab bacon
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 large onion, peeled and stuck with 2 cloves
1 bay leaf
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon allspice
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 pounds collard greens, cut in 1-inch ribbons (about 8 cups)
1 bunch scallions, cleaned and chopped, for garnish

Directions:

Drain the peas and put them in a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add ham hocks or bone and cover with 10 cups of water and turn the heat to high. Add salt, onion stuck with cloves, one bay leaf, black pepper and allspice.

Bring to a boil before reducing heat to a gentle simmer. Skim off and discard any foam that rises to the surface and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until peas are tender.

Throughout the cooking process, you will need to add water as necessary, always keeping the liquid level about one inch above the surface, stirring with wooden spoon occasionally.

Turn off the heat and check the broth for salt and adjust seasoning. The mixture should be fairly brothy. With a pair of tongs, remove the ham hock, ham bone, bacon or whatever you are using for seasoning. Chop this meat and skin into rough pieces and set aside.

Put a large skillet over medium-high heat and add vegetable oil, heating until the oil is wavy. Add garlic and red pepper to season and let sizzle but be careful not to  brown.

Add the collard greens and stir to coat. Season with salt and add one cup of water, stirring to help wilt the greens. Add the chopped ham and reduce the heat to medium before covering with the lid slightly ajar.

Cook until the greens are soft, which takes about 20 minutes. Taste and season until perfectly suited for your taste buds.

To serve, put greens and meat in low soup bowls or plates with a decent edge, then ladle over the hot black-eyed peas. Optionally, you can sprinkle the top with scallions and serve this New Year’s Day recipe with cornbread.

new years day

Pork Tenderloin with Festive Cranberry Sauce

Written by Lillian Tram on December 21st, 2015

Coming from a large family and raising one myself, I adore pork loin recipes. Not only are they an affordable choice at the grocery store, a pork loin also feeds a large group of people and you still end up with leftovers. The last time I  cooked a pork loin, I used the recipe posted here on the My Pig Me Up blog. I was able to grind it up with my Ninja (best invention – ever!) and make pork barbeque infused with delicious peppers. It was a real hit with everyone!
 
 

Pork Tenderloin Recipe for Christmas Dinner

 

Make a Pork Tenderloin with Festive Chipotle Cranberry Sauce!

 
 

 
 

 Ingredients for this Pork Recipe:

 
1 tsp. garlic salt
½ tsp. ground dry mustard
1 lb. pork tenderloin
2 Tbsp. olive oil
3 Tbsp. honey
Just 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, finely minced from the can
1 c. whole cranberries, coarsely chopped
1 small clove garlic, minced
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
½ c. brown sugar
 
 

Recipe Directions:

 
Preheat oven to 375°. Mix garlic salt and dry mustard in small bowl and rub evenly over the pork tenderloin.
 
 
Line a roasting pan with foil and place the pork tenderloin on a rack coated with cooking spray, and place in the roasting pan.
 
 
Roast pork tenderloin in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes.
 
 
Mix olive oil and honey in small bowl. After 30 minutes of cooking, brush the oil and honey mixture over the pork and cook for another 10 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.
 
 
Meanwhile, combine chipotle peppers, cranberries, minced garlic, lemon juice, and brown sugar in a small heavy bottomed pot.
 
 
Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10-15 minutes.
 
 
Slice the pork tenderloin and serve with pan juices and cranberry-chipotle sauce on the side.
 
 
If you aren’t sure about the Chipotle flavor for your family, there are other options such as this cranberry sauce recipe infused with (are you ready for this?) BACON! The inclusion of this delectable bacon flavor may convince even the most pickiest of palates to try your alternative cranberry concoction.
 
 

Bacon and Fried Onion Cranberry Sauce Recipe

 
 
Alternatively, if you want a bacon infused festive sauce, I found one for those of you who are not fans of the traditional cranberry sauces. You can watch the video here for a step by step how-to or follow the directions below.
 
 
Recipe Ingredients:
 
1 pound bacon, cut into 1-inch chunks

1 large yellow onion, diced

1/2 cup orange juice

12-ounce bag fresh or frozen cranberries

1 large or 2 small apples, peeled, cored and diced

1/2 cup sugar

Kosher salt and ground black pepper

 

Directions:
 
In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until it is slightly crispy, about 10 to 12 minutes.
 
 
Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined plate and set aside, leaving the saucepan and bacon fat over the heat.
 
 
Carefully add onion and cook until it has been lightly fried, 2 to 3 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the onions to the plate with the bacon.
 
 
Dispose of the fat in the pan, but don’t scrape the pan. You want to use any of those browned bits that are left on the bottom.
 
 
Return the pan to the stove. When the pan is hot, carefully add the orange juice and bring to a simmer while using a wooden spoon or silicone spatula to scrap the bits free from the bottom of the pan.
 
 
Add the cranberries, apple and sugar, then bring to a simmer. Cook until the cranberries pop and the juice thickens, about 6 minutes.
 
 
Return the bacon and onions to the pan, then taste and season with salt and pepper. Cool before serving.
 
 
 
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Yummy Homemade Eggnog with Bacon

Written by Lillian Tram on December 11th, 2015

Eggnog. It’s one of the most delightful offerings of the holiday season and sadly, when January arrives, the eggnog disappears from all the grocery store coolers. Every year I hope that someone will decide this holiday nog will somehow be deemed appropriate for all seasons and remain available. Disappointed because that never happens, I was forced to go without this cold and spicy protein rich concoction for another year …until I figured out how to make my own.
 
 

Eggnog and Bacon?

 
As bacon claims its new found fame, this delicious meat can now be found in just about everything, even cocktails. When I heard there was an bacon and eggnog concoction, I wasn’t in the least bit surprised. Excited maybe …but not surprised. Are you? While you might think eggnog to be a difficult recipe to make, it’s really not. It may put a tiny dent in your grocery budget but hey! With the added bonus of bacon, this could almost be considered a meal (smile).
 
 

 
 

Eggnog Recipe with Bacon

 
The ingredient list is short which makes my wallet happy.
 
8 eggs, separated
2/3 cup maple syrup
3 cups whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups bourbon
16 strips crisply cooked bacon
 
 
Directions:
 
Place egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk on low speed until frothy, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium-high and, watching carefully, beat until they are about the consistency of shaving cream, about 90 seconds. Reduce speed to medium. With mixer running, add half of maple syrup and beat until incorporated, about 30 seconds. Transfer whites to a large bowl. Do not wash bowl.
 
 
Add egg yolks and remaining syrup to now-empty stand mixer bowl and beat at medium-high speed until pale yellow and ribbony, shutting off machine and scraping down sides with a rubber spatula as necessary, about 2 minutes total. Add milk, cream, and alcohol and mix on low speed to combine.
 
 
Using a rubber spatula or handheld whisk, fold the whipped whites into the egg yolk/milk mixture until completely incorporated. Serve by ladling into special glassware or mugs and garnishing with a bacon strip.
 
 

Special Glassware for Homemade Eggnog

If you have special glassware sitting in a china cabinet, now is the time of year to get some enjoyment from a set such as this one. Or remember the old Tom & Jerry sets?


 
 
This homemade eggnog recipe takes ten minutes to mix and serve. The yield is about two quarts, which has the potential to make about ten people really happy …or just me.  Yum! Please let me know how your eggnog turns out, and may you have a wonderful holiday season.
 
 

Bacon Soup Recipes to Love

Written by Lillian Tram on November 16th, 2015

Bacon and soup – what a wonderful winter combination! I am sharing two of my favorite bacon soup recipes with you now …before it gets terribly cold outside! If you have never tasted bacon soup, you will find that this is comfort food at its finest, guaranteed to warm your soul and satisfy those taste buds.
 
bacon soup recipes
 

Bacon Soup Recipes to Keep and Share

 
First on the list of favorites is a recipe I found a couple of years ago at a blog called Mel’s Kitchen Cafe and boy is this bacon soup delish! You won’t get over how creamy and cheesy this recipe is! The bacon and cheese come together like a young couple who cannot keep their hands off of one another. Coming from a large family and having six children of my own, one of the things I like about this recipe (aside from the inclusion of bacon!) is that this soup contains 10+ cups of vegetables! Now, that’s gotta be healthy! Knowing there’s so many vegetables packed in every bowlful, there’s a lot less shame in consuming all that yummy bacon and cheese.
 
The blog writer describes this recipe “Like classic broccoli cheese soup on steroids” and she’s right! The flavor takes me back to when I was younger, back when my family served that tried and true broccoli chicken and rice casserole recipe every Thanksgiving. (Our family stuck to the traditional turkey and dressing with cranberry sauce but that was about it. We certainly marched to the beat of a different drum and that’s okay because when it comes to food, you gotta do what feels right …and his soup? Well, it feels better than alright. Just see for yourself.
 

#1 – Loaded Broccoli Cheese and Bacon Soup

 
While I could tell you to substitute delish pork bacon for the lower sodium and lower calorie turkey bacon, I simply refuse to do that. Put that bacon grease to work making the white sauce wow and leave out the butter. For a thicker heartier soup, use two heads of broccoli but if you prefer thinner soups, use only one head of broccoli, diced small of course as mentioned in the recipe below. You can also add broth in the final stage to thin this soup down a bit.
 

Ingredients:

 
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup peeled and chopped carrots, diced small
1 cup chopped celery, diced small
3 cups peeled and chopped potatoes, diced small
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
4-5 cups broccoli crowns, diced small (about 2 heads of broccoli)
4-6 slices bacon, chopped
3 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup flour
3 cups milk
4 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (about 16 ounces)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon dried mustard
 

Directions:

 
In a large saucepan, combine the chicken broth, carrots, celery, potatoes and onion. Bring the mixture to a boil, cover and simmer for 10 minutes, until the vegetables are starting to get tender.
 
Add the chopped broccoli. Cover and simmer for another 10 minutes. The pan is going to be very full of vegetables (don’t let any picky eaters see the pot!) and it might seem more like stew than soup but I promise it all comes together later on, when you add the cheese mixture.
 
In a separate saucepan, saute the bacon until golden and crispy before removing the bacon and placing on a paper towel lined plate. Drain the grease and wipe out saucepan.
 
Melt the butter using the same saucepan you cooked the bacon over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes until golden, stirring constantly.
 
Gradually whisk in milk and cook until the mixture is bubbling and slightly thickened, about 5-7 minutes. Stir in the cheddar cheese, one handful at a time, adding another handful after the cheese melts each time. Season with salt, pepper and dry mustard.
 
Slowly add the cheese sauce to the hot broth and vegetables, stirring to combine well. Add the reserved bacon and add additional salt and pepper to taste. I always add a little Tony’s Creole Seasoning but that’s because my family is hooked.
 
 

bacon in the soup

 

 I have been playing with this recipe for just over a year, when I first found it on a cooking blog called The Wicked Noodle. Catchy name right? I love the name almost as much as I adore this bacon soup recipe! Maybe this recipe is just a little bit healthier too, since the red potatoes aren’t peeled. Is there nutrients in a potato peel? I gotta remember to look that up later.

 

One of the best features of this soup recipe is the amounts of cheese… and I am not ashamed to say that I always (yes, always – it’s gone on so long now I can actually say it’s part of my cheese addiction) add even more cheese than what the recipe calls for. I did mention that this soup has bacon in it too, right? Just kidding… sorta. I’m a sucker for anything with bacon in it but I also love jalapeno and I will put them in almost anything. Thankfully, my family loves it when I get my spicy on in the kitchen and hopefully yours will love this recipe as much as we do.

 

Bacon Soup Recipe #2 – Loaded Potato Soup

 

Ingredients:

 
1/2 pound bacon, sliced into large pieces
1/2 medium-sized sweet onion, chopped
3 tablespoons flour
1 32-ounce container low-sodium chicken broth (4 cups)
3 pounds red potatoes, quartered or halved depending on size
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups whole milk
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
 

Toppings:

shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, chopped green onion, crumbled bacon, minced fresh jalapeno and a drizzle of adobo sauce.
 

Instructions:

 
Heat a stock pot over med-high heat. Add bacon and cook until crisp.
 
Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and let drain on a plate lined with paper towels. Leave the bacon grease in the pot.
 
Reduce heat to medium and add onions. Cook onions until they are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Be careful not to burn them.
 
Sprinkle flour over onions and cook, stirring constantly for about a one minute  as this removes the raw flour taste.
 
Slowly pour in the chicken stock, whisking constantly until smooth and well-blended with the flour.
 
Add potatoes and bring to a boil; next, simmer until potatoes are very soft, about 15-30 minutes, depending on the size of the potatoes.
 
Using a potato masher or similar kitchen tool, crush potatoes to thicken soup, leaving some chunks but allowing some to level out into the soup.
 
Stir in the cheese until it is melted and the soup is smooth.
 
Add milk, bring soup back to a simmer and cook for an additional 10 minutes, or until very hot.
 
Ladle soup into bowls and add one or all of the toppings listed above, based on your preferences. Dig in!
 
 

Asiago, Potato, and Bacon Gratin Side Dish Recipe

Written by Lillian Tram on October 22nd, 2015

Sincerely, who doesn’t love potato and bacon? They are delicious in any combination, but when they come together, it seems nothing can be more appreciated by a hungry family, isn’t it true? So if you have some potatoes and bacon at home, then your meal for today is ensured. Get ready to learn the recipe that will make all your dear ones be thankful for a flavor-filled meal.
 

 Need a Fabulous Bacon Side Dish Recipe Now?

 

bacon side dish

 

Before proceeding with the recipe, here is a recommendation that you might want to consider, in order to give your meal a pronounced flavor. As you definitely know, potatoes need salt. Rather than salting the water that the potatoes boil in, you might want to try sprinkling the potatoes with salt after you drain them and then salt the white sauce separately. This way, you ensure a more pronounced flavor for your meal and everyone will surely appreciate your cooking talents.

 
 
Ingredients
 
1 1/2 pounds peeled Yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices

1 teaspoon salt – divided

2 tablespoons minced shallots

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 cups 1% low-fat milk – divided

3/4 cup (3 ounces) grated Asiago cheese

1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese

4 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled

1/4 cup chopped fresh chives

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Cooking Spray

 
 
Preparation
 
Start with preheating oven to 350 degrees.
 
Take a large saucepan and place potatoes in it, then cover with water. Bring it to a boil, then reduce heat. Simmer 5 minutes or until potatoes get almost tender, then drain them.
 
Use ¼ teaspoon salt and sprinkle potatoes evenly with it. Set aside and keep them warm.
 
Use cooking spray to coat a medium saucepan and heat it over medium heat.
 
Add shallots to saucepan and cook 2 minutes or until tender, remembering to stir frequently.
 
Using a dry measuring cup, lightly spoon flour and level it using a knife. Sprinkle flour over shallots.
 
Add ½ cup milk gradually and use a whisk to stir until well blended. Gradually add remaining milk, using the whisk to stir it.
 
Cook the composition over medium heat for 9 minutes or until thick and stir frequently. When ready, remove from heat.
 
Add Asiago, bacon, chives, pepper and ¾ teaspoon salt and stir them together.
 
Use cooking spray to coat an 8-inch square baking dish and arrange half of potato slices in it. Take half of cheese sauce and pour it over the potato slices.
 
Use the remaining potato slices and cheese sauce to top the composition and then use Parmesan to sprinkle it over the top.
 
Put the composition to oven and bake it at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned and bubbly.
 
Asiago, Potato, and Bacon Gratin
 
 

Let us know what you think of this delectable bacon side dish!

 

Leave your comments here!

 
 
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Delicious Bacon Stuffed Avocados Recipe

Written by Lillian Tram on October 12th, 2015

Have you been asking yourself what’s better than bacon while planning a special meal? Honestly, I don’t think there are many flavors to trump bacon, except for maybe chocolate …nah, I still say bacon is numero uno. If meal times are often boring because of the same ole side dishes, you need some vegetable recipes inspired by delicious bacon!
 
Imagine: what if every meal included the taste of bacon! It is possible, you know… when you have great bacon side dish recipes such as this delicious Bacon Stuffed Avocados Recipe, perfect for meal times or party menus. Who would have thought to stuff glorious bacon inside tasty avocados? It’s pure genius!
 
Bacon stuffed Avocados
 

What’s Not to Love about this Bacon Stuffed Avocados Recipe?

 
I’m not sure why it took an internet search to find this tasty gem of a side dish, but with bacon and avocados, you know it’s gonna be yummy! Adapted from a recipe found at the Better in Bulk website, these two ingredients are going to wow your meal time and make mouths happy. Need something for your next party menu or looking for a great way to start your day? This versatile bacon recipe is ideal anytime you are in the mood.
 

Bacon Stuffed Avocados Ingredients

 
Four medium ripe avocados
8 or 10 slices of your favorite bacon, cooked crispy before being crumbled
Dash of lime juice
½ cup of margarine or butter
¼ cup of light or dark brown sugar (the dark provides a richer molasses flavor)
¼ cup of white wine vinegar
¼ cup of chopped garlic
½ teaspoon of salt or salt substitute
 
 

Bacon Stuffed Avocados Instructions

 
Slice the avocados in half, lengthwise and scoop out enough avocado flesh to create a small bowl. Set aside
 
Place the scooped out avocado flesh in a mixing bowl, and add the crisp crumbled bacon. Mash gently.
 
Spoon this mixture back into the avocado halves and sprinkle with lime juice. This is to prevent the avocados from browning.
 
Combine the remaining ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Stir occasionally until this mixture is smooth and the sugars are dissolved.
 
Pour the hot mixture over the stuffed avocado halves and serve immediately.
 
Bacon stuffed avocados
 
This is a great recipe when you want something that is truly different than what you normally eat. The flavors combine for a wow factor not normally seen in a side dish, thanks to this winning combination of flavors and rich syrupy garnish. The prep time is surprisingly short, only twenty minutes, and this bacon inspired recipe is quite satisfying.
 

When will you serve these Bacon Stuffed Avocados?

 
 

Creamed Corn with Bacon and Leeks

Written by Lillian Tram on October 3rd, 2015

When you have guests for dinner and you don’t know what to cook, you might get frustrated. Time shows up to never be on your side in such situations, so you need to rapidly get some inspiration from somewhere, right? And where is this “somewhere”, other than the internet? Better yet, by visiting your favorite ‘Pig Me Up’ blog 🙂
 
Bacon side dish
 
Creamed Corn with Bacon and Leeks Side Dish Recipe
 
I remember having only a few hours until my unexpected guests were to arrive at my home and I needed to urgently find a recipe to prepare, preferably one with delicious bacon! I really wanted to spoil my dinner guests with a nice warm welcome, and the aroma of a home cooked dinner – down to the last side dish.
 
Corn is a faithful side dish standard but sometimes it is also a boring option …without bacon of course. I prepared this Creamed Corn recipe for them and it turned out to be a real joy for everyone. They appreciated my cooking talents and were really impressed with the aromas that spread all through my dining room. (Everyone loves the smell of bacon, right?)
 
side dish ingredients
 
Here I will show you what ingredients you need and how you will prepare this extraordinary, delicious meal. You’ll try it once and will sure fall in love with its delicious taste.
 
 

Ingredients
 
6 ears corn

2 cups 1% low-fat milk

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

4 slices bacon

1 cup chopped leek

 

Preparation
 

First, take the corn and cut the kernels from ears, so that they measure 3 cups.

Take a bowl and scape milk and remaining pulp from cubs, using the dull side of a knife blade.

Place low-fat milk, sugar, salt, pepper, cornstarch and one and a half cups kernels in a food processor and process the composition until smooth, scraping sides.

Take a large cast-iron skillet and use it to cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Turn it once before ready. Remove the bacon from the pan and reserve one teaspoon drippings in pan. Crumble bacon.

Then, add leeks to pan and cook them for 2 minutes or until tender. You need to constantly stir.

Puree corn mixture and add it to pan, together with remaining 1 ½ cups corn kernels and corn milk. Bring the composition to a boil.

Reduce heat and then simmer for 3 minutes or until the composition gets slightly thick, remembering to constantly stir.

Before serving, sprinkle with the crumbled bacon.

BBQ’d Pork Nachos with Bacon

Written by Lillian Tram on September 28th, 2015

Everyone loves nachos, whether they are served alone, with cheese or loaded with delectable goodness. While you might consider this a Mexican dish, nachos were actually created for the American palate. A man named Ignacio Anaya, who was nicknamed Nacho, worked as a maitre d’ in a popular restaurant called the Victory Club, located in Piedras Negra near the Eagle Pass, Texas military base.
 
It is believed that one evening, a group of military wives arrived for a meal after the cook had gone home. While he knew he had no culinary skills to speak of, Nacho did not want to lose their business. He retreated to the kitchen, donned the chef’s hat and went to work, creating a trio of warm delicious goodness we know and love today: nachos with cheese and jalapeno pepper rings. The ladies loved this new dish and it is likely that, when they asked for its name, Nacho named the edible invention after his namesake.
 
 

Nachos as Game Day Food

 

BBQ'd Pork Nachos with Bacon

 
Twenty years after their initial restaurant debut, a man named Frank Liberto thought nachos would be great as stadium food, adding them to the menu at Arlington Stadium, which was home to baseball’s Texas Rangers. His idea made this American fare even more popular than it already was, tweaking the cheese recipe to prolong the shelf life and promote faster service as this improvement wouldn’t require warming the deliciously yellow goodness.
 
From that point, it is believed that people said, “Hey, I can make this delicious stadium food at home!” Sure enough, not only did they begin making the delectable original featuring jalapeno rings, but they began to experiment with an assortment of toppings which led to today’s term of “LOADED NACHOS”. Loaded with what, you might be asking? Anything and everything that sounds delicious with Nacho cheese. Among the favorites meat choices today are homemade chili, pulled pork and hamburger meat. Other popular toppings include shredded lettuce, fresh diced tomatoes, sour cream and black olives, to name a few.
 

Are you craving nachos yet? If not, you certainly should be!

 
Adapted from the cookbook called ‘Get Grilling’ comes a great recipe for the ultimate loaded nachos, perfect for those who love the taste of pulled pork and tasty bacon. Need a great recipe for pulled pork so you can make these tasty loaded nachos? Follow the link in the ingredient list to our very own pulled pork recipe.
 
 

Ingredients:

1 1⁄2 cups cooked pork, shredded

2 cups of your favorite barbecue sauce

12 ounce can of pinto beans, drained and rinsed

1 lime

1 tablespoon of Cajun seasoning

2 medium tomatoes, diced

2 pickled jalapeno peppers, chopped

1⁄2 cup of fresh cilantro, roughly chopped plus some for garnish

7 ounces of white corn tortilla chips

1⁄3 cup of sour cream, plus additional for garnish

Three or four strips of bacon, cooked and crumbled for garnish

12 ounces of shredded cheddar cheese

salt and pepper
 
 

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

Toss the pulled pork with one cup of barbeque sauce and set aside.

Coarsely mash the beans in a bowl, adding the lime juice, half the Cajun Rub, and salt to taste.

In another bowl, toss the diced tomatoes with the jalapenos and 1/2 cup of cilantro.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Scatter half the tortilla chips in a baking dish.

Scatter the meat, beans, and 1/3 cup of sour cream as well as half the tomato mixture over the tortilla chips.

Cover with the remaining chips evenly before spreading the remaining tomatoes, sauce, and Cajun Rub.

Sprinkle the shredded cheese over the entire dish.

Bake the deliciously loaded nachos until the cheese has melted and begins to brown, which is about seven minutes.

Serve this American fare warm, garnished with additional sour cream, bacon crumbles and cilantro.

Mushroom and Bacon Casserole

Written by Lillian Tram on September 25th, 2015

Try this exceptional Mushroom & Bacon Casserole!

 
 Mushroom and Bacon Casserole
 
When you cook for family or friends, for special occasions, one of the most difficult decisions is what to cook to impress and to make everyone appreciate your cooking talents. Of course, there are various dishes to choose from, but you probably wish to come with something new and interesting, to touch their senses with the aromas of your dish.
 
Therefore, you first need to think about the main ingredients that you will use. For me, having mushrooms and bacon on hand is very important, as these are some of my favorite ingredients. I consider that either of these two ingredients allow me to diversify my meals and come with something new and delicious every time I wish to cook something delicious.
 
Now think about creating a dish which uses both mushrooms and bacon. Can you imagine the aromas and the taste of it? Well, the result is exceptional and you’ll sure love it! Anyway, I recommend doing this recipe when you have enough time to spend in your kitchen, as it requires over one hour of cooking.
 
 

Mushroom and Bacon Casserole Ingredients

 
4 cups unsalted beef stock

3 cups of water

8 center-cut chopped bacon slices

1 cup chopped onion

1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

6 garlic minced cloves

8 ounces sliced cremini mushrooms

8 ounces sliced shiitake mushroom caps

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 cups uncooked pearl barley

1/3 cup Madeira wine

4 ounces Gruyère cheese – about 1 cup shredded and the rest divided

1/2 cup chopped drained oil-packed sun-dried tomato halves

2 teaspoons lower-sodium soy sauce

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 (about 10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry

Cooking spray
 
 

How to prepare Mushroom and Bacon Casserole:

 
First, you need to preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
 
Using a large saucepan, bring stock and the 3 cups of water to a simmer, without boiling it. Make sure you keep mixture warm.
 
Using a Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium-high heat, until it gets crispy.
 
Remove bacon from the cooking pan, set it aside and reserve one tablespoon drippings in the pan.
 
Put pan to medium-high heat and then add onion, garlic and thyme to the remaining drippings in pan. Sauté the composition for 3 minutes or until it gets tender. Add mushrooms and then add salt. Cook the composition for 10 minutes or until it gets a brown color. Stir it occasionally.
 
Add the barley and cook for 1 minute, stirring the composition frequently.
 
Add Madeira and cook for 1 minute or until the entire liquid is absorbed by the composition in the pan.
 
Reduce the heat from medium-high to medium.
 
Add 2 cups of broth mixture and stir. Cook for 4 minutes or until the liquid gets nearly absorbed. Frequently stir during cooking. Add the remaining broth mixture, one cup at a time and stir frequently, so that the composition absorbs each portion of broth mixture. This step will require about 30 minutes to complete, as you need to wait until each portion of broth is completely absorbed before you add the next one.
 
Add 2 ounces Gruyère, tomatoes, spinach, bacon, soy sauce and pepper and stir them together.
 
Coat a 2-quart ceramic or glass baking dish with cooking spray and place barley mixture in it. Sprinkle the composition with remaining cheese.
 
Coat aluminum foil with cooking spray and use it to cover the composition.
 
Bake the composition at 375 degree for 15 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 10 minutes, or until all the cheese is melted. Let Mushroom and Bacon Casserole stand for 5 minutes before serving.
 
 

15 Game Day Snacks for Bacon Lovin’ Football Fans

Written by Lillian Tram on September 12th, 2015

If you missed it, the NFL 2015 Kick Off happened last Thursday, September 10th in a game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the New England Patriots. The 28-21 football game ended in the Patriot’s favor, leaving die hard football fans hungry for another game. That’s not all those football fans are hungry for this season though, but with the following list of Game Day Snacks, you’re going have no problem intercepting those appetites with some delightful bacon-y goodness!
 

15. Bacon Lover’s Trail Mix

 

Find the recipe here

 
There’s nothing like watching a football game while munching on something with a salty bacon flavor, and this Bacon Lover’s Trail Mix is a sure fire winner. Best of all, the recipe is so quick and simple, even the busiest football fan can find the time to whip some up and invite friends over for a great game day get-together.
 
 

14. Crispy Bacon Grilled Cheese Roll Ups

 

Crispy Bacon Grilled Cheese Roll UpsFind the recipe here.

 

Crispy Bacon Grilled Cheese Roll Ups are another quick and easy game day snack that you can make in just a few minutes without blowing your bacon budget for the month! In fact, the entire recipe is super short and sweet, allowing you more time to catch those touchdowns and socialize with your guests. During half-time, you are sure to be raking in the compliments for your bacon inspired offerings.

 
 

13. Game Day Mini Bacon Quiches

 

Mini Bacon Quiches

Find the recipe here

 

While these little bacon inspired jewels take longer to make, your guests will appreciate the time you took to make these Game Day Mini Bacon Quiches. A little of this, a little of that, toss them into a muffin tin and place in the oven …and presto! Your guest can enjoy a delicious snack that oozes with cheesy goodness and delectable bacon!

 
 

12. Pig and Dip

 

Find the instructions here

 

No Game Day celebration is complete without chips and dip …but if you are tired of tasteless and overly processed potato chips, check out this Pig and Dip recipe using real Russet potatoes! Don’t have time to make your own homemade chips? Pick up a couple of bags of store bought chips and serve them with this de-lish homemade dip recipe.

 
 

11. Bacon on the Ritz

 

Bacon CrackersFind the instructions here

 

You may think that you do not have time to make Game Day snacks but this little recipe is here today to prove you are wrong. Made with Ritz crackers, bacon and rich brown sugar, this little gem of a recipe costs next to nothing to make and is sure to be a big hit with your munching football fans.

 
 

 10. Bacon Cheddar Deviled Eggs

 

Bacon Deviled EggsRecipe available here

 

Deviled eggs have been a traditional food for gatherings and get-togethers for as long as most people can recall. Since your Game Day theme is centered around bacon, here is a quick and simple recipe that combines this finger food with that delectable bacon-y flavor. Betcha they won’t eat just one!

 
 

9. Man Candy

 

Man Candy

Also called Pig Candy

Instructions here

 

 With a name like Man Candy, it’s no wonder this chocolate covered snack would be chosen as part of a Game Day line-up. Underneath this rich chocolate blanket is a strip of sweet and salty and ohh so crispy bacon! How’s that for a score?

 
 

8. Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers

 

Jalapeno PoppersRecipe is posted here

 

Whether you have a weakness for spicy peppers or not, these tempting Game Day snacks are delicious and mild enough for nearly any palate to enjoy. With only three ingredients to gather, you won’t spend a mint making these bad boys and your football lovin’ guests will leave the platter empty.

 
 

7. Hot Dog and Bacon Roll-Ups

 
Hot Dog and Bacon Roll-Ups

Detailed Instructions Here

 

Stadiums around the United States know that Game Day and Hot Dogs are a match made in heaven, but add bacon to the mix and wow! Hot Dog and Bacon Roll-Ups are sure to become the next all-American sports fans’ favorite snack. Requiring only three ingredients and a handy dandy crock pot, you can cook these tasty appetizers in just a few hours.

 
 

6.  BBQ’d Pork Nachos with Bacon 

 

BBQ'd Pork Nachos with BaconView Our Recipe Here

 

Why would you bother serving plain ole nachos with cheese when you can have the delectable goodness of these barbeque pork and bacon topped nachos? These BBQ’d Pork Nachos with Bacon are sure to be a dish your football fans will talk about from kick-off until well after the football season has ended.

 
 

5. Bacon Wrapped Scallops with Spicy Mayo

 

Bacon Wrapped Scallops with Spicy MayoRecipe here

 

With 20 minutes of prep time and 15 additional minutes to cook, these  Bacon Wrapped Scallops with Spicy Mayo are certainly worth the time and effort required to throw these bay boys together. A word of warning though… your football fans are going to want more of these bacon inspired Game Day snacks.

 
 

4. Game Day Nachos

 

Game Day NachosGet more nacho recipe ideas here

 

Nachos can be made a million different ways and are an excellent way to celebrate the onset or end of football season. Whether you opt for homemade tortilla chips or buy them from the store, these Game Day Nachos are sure to please your football lovers’ palates!

 
 

3. Jalapeno Popper Cheeseball

 

Check out our recipe here

 

What’s a Game Day get-together or football party without the addition of a yummy bacon flavored cheeseball to your menu? This Jalapeno Popper Cheeseball has lots to offer, especially with these crunchy panko bread crumbs.

 
 

2. Bacon and Cheddar Sliders

 

Bacon and Cheddar SlidersGet the instructions here

 

When planning your football inspired party, sliders are another great offering for guests. These Bacon and Cheddar Sliders are quick and easy to build, and it isn’t likely you will have any leftovers to contend with. Take this recipe and make it your own, topping these burgers with your own favorite veggies and cheese.

 
 

1. Bacon-Wrapped Potatoes With Creamy Dill Sauce

 

Bacon-Wrapped Potatoes With Creamy Dill SauceFind the recipe here

 

If Game Day parties are common at your house, here is a new recipe to toss into the mix. Bacon-Wrapped Potatoes With Creamy Dill Sauce are easy to make and offer a new flavor to please and tease your guests’ taste buds. Not sure if you like the idea of a creamy dill sauce? Dip these little spuds in the spicy dip on number twelve, above.

 
 

Keep watching for more great recipes, coming soon to our blog!

 
 

Recipe Alert! Bacon Peanut Brittle

Written by Lillian Tram on July 9th, 2015

 
Gone are the days when bacon was only served for breakfast or on a sandwich. Now bacon has grown into a phenomenon and people are looking for new and innovative ways to add bacon to every dish – even desserts. It started with doughnuts and cupcakes and migrated to cheesecakes and cookies. Now, some genius figured out how to combine bacon with the delectable taste of bacon and voila! Bacon candy is a hot new treat.
 

Ever heard of Bacon Peanut Brittle?

 

Bacon-Peanut-Brittle

 

It’s a NYC favorite!

 
According the restaurateurs who make this delicious salty sweet bacon dessert, it’s all about choosing and using the right peanuts. The Redhead is the well-known New York City restaurant located on South 13th street serving this delectable goodness, and they credit the success of their establishment to having the ‘best beer nuts in America’. Using these nuts in every batch of Bacon Peanut Brittle has been key to this East Village gastropub’s rise in popularity.
 
 

  How to Make Your Own Bacon Peanut Brittle

 
Even if you are a million miles from New York City, you can enjoy the wonderful flavor of bacon and peanuts infused in sweet syrup. While it won’t be the same as the candy served up north, you will find that this recipe can easily make your mouth very, very happy! Let’s check out this recipe, shared from the food.com website.
 

bacon

 

Bacon Peanut Brittle Ingredients

 

 

Bacon Peanut Brittle Directions

 

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Place bacon on a rack over a cookie sheet and cook until crispy, about 15 minutes. Reserve bacon fat. The recipe calls for 8 tablespoons of butter (fat) – replace as much of butter as you have bacon fat. Once bacon is done, drain on paper towels and chop into bits.
  3.  

  4. Place the sugar and maple syrup in a large, heavy saucepan over high heat and stir with a wooden spoon until sugar begins to melt. Lower the heat to medium-high and keep stirring just until the sugar is melted. Stop stirring and watch for it to turn a medium caramel color. About 10 minutes total.
  5.  

  6. Stir in peanuts, and then bacon fat and butter. Then add Old Bay, cayenne and dry mustard. Allow peanuts to cook for about two minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in the bacon.
  7.  

  8. Turn the mixture out onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper, and spread it evenly to the desired thickness with a wooden spoon or stiff rubber spatula. Sprinkle salt on top, while brittle is still warm.
  9.  

  10. Allow to cool completely–at least one hour–then break the brittle into pieces and store in an airtight container at room temperature. If your brittle isn’t brittle enough to break into pieces, pop it in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes, until it hardens enough to snap easily.

 

 Bacon Peanut Brittle

 

Have you ever tasted Bacon Peanut Brittle?

 

Let us know if you love the recipe!

 
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Recipe Alert! Bacon Mushroom Ragu Pasta

Written by Lillian Tram on June 16th, 2015

Whoa! Check out this Bacon Mushroom Ragu Pasta Recipe!

 
Bacon Mushroom Ragu Sauce Recipe
 

Yield: 8

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes
 

Cooking Italian with Delicious Bacon

 

If you want something that is easy and fairly quick to make with excellent yumminess, this Bacon Mushroom Ragu is it, seriously. I was a bit apprehensive about what the kids would say about the mushrooms, they’re not fans of the fungus family…yet, though I am determined to develop an appreciation for them in the kids. The original recipe I found calls for a pound of ground turkey, and you can certainly use that as opposed to the lesser amount of Italian sausage, but I mean it’s Italian sausage.
 

To soothe over the possible apocalypse of mushrooms in their food, I made up a batch of my roasted garlic no-knead bread the night before. It must have worked because not only did they not shoot me with their dagger eyes, they said, “Mom, this is the bomb!” Whew! As those of you with teens will know, there is apparently no higher praise than “being the bomb”. Enough talking, make this, eat this, and fantasize about making it again; I know I am.

 

INGREDIENTS:
 

2 tbsp. oil
8-10 strips of bacon, chopped in small pieces
1/2 lb. cremini mushrooms, chopped
3 tbsp. fresh thyme, finely chopped (keep 1 tbsp. for garnish)
½ lb of Italian sausage (I used the hot links, they were fantastic)
1 large sweet onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, pressed
Salt and pepper
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
2 cups stock
1 lb. penne ziti pasta
2 tbsp. butter, melted
Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

 

DIRECTIONS:
 

onion and baconIn a large skillet, heat the oil and add the bacon, cooking until the fat melts, about 3 minutes.

Add the mushrooms and 2 tbsp. of thyme, stirring until the mushrooms are brown, about 5 more minutes.

 

 

Add the onion and cook another 5 minutes.

 

 

Adding Mushrooms and Bacon

 

 

Lastly, add the ground turkey to the skillet with garlic, breaking the meat into tiny pieces as it cooks.

 

Cook for about 5 minutes until the meat is done.

 

 

cooking with bacon

 

 

 

 

Add the tomato paste and stir for about 1 minute.

Stir in the stock and bring to a boil; simmer on low while the pasta cooks.

 

 

bacon yum!

 

 

 

Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions, minus 1-2 minutes, cooking it al dente.

Drain and place the pasta in a large bowl, adding the melted butter.

 

Bacon deliciousness

 

 

 

Pour the bacon and mushroom ragu sauce over the pasta.

Sprinkle with cheese and fresh thyme; serve.

 

 

 

Delicious Italian Recipe with Bacon!

 

 

Watch as everyone devours this bacon Italian inspired goodness!

 

 

 

 

 

Adapted from The Reluctant Entertainer

Ever Heard of Pig Candy?

Written by Lillian Tram on May 23rd, 2015

Pig Candy aka Man Candy

 
If you have never experienced this addictive and delectable treat, Pig Candy is the perfect confection for those who have a sweet tooth and love the distinct flavor of bacon. A perfect combination of candied bacon and rich dark chocolate, you will be addicted from the moment you taste this salty sweet treat but where can you score a sample? If you want to try the real deal, head to Roni-Sue Chocolates on Essex Street in New York City. If that’s a little too far for you, check out our easy Pig Candy recipe below.

 

Pig Candy

Pig Candy from Roni-Sue Chocolates

 

How to Make Pig Candy

 
One of the easiest candy recipes you will ever make, Pig Candy doesn’t take long but delivers results that are absolutely unforgettable. Often referred to as ‘Man Candy’, this is a confection that pleases the palates of young and old alike. But please be warned that not just any ole bacon strips will do this recipe justice. You will want to splurge on a thick sliced and truly great tasting pound of bacon. For this recipe, we recommend purchasing thick and savory strips of Applewood Smoked Bacon. Are you ready to be amazed? Let’s get cooking!

 

Ingredients: 

One pound of thick sliced Applewood smoked bacon

One twelve ounce bag of semisweet chocolate morsels

Four ounces of white or dark chocolate almond bark (optional)

 

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and lay strips of bacon in a single layer using a foil lined pan. Place in the oven for fifteen to twenty minutes or until bacon has a nice color and is crispy.
 
Allow the bacon to cool paper towels. When cool, cut each strip in half.
 
Melt the semi-sweet chocolate chips and almond bark separately, using either a double boiler or a microwave. Stir constantly or in thirty second intervals to prevent burning if using the microwave. If the melted chocolate is too thick, add a teaspoon of shortening and stir until smooth. This should provide a thinner consistency.
 
Dip each strip of bacon into the melted chocolate and place on parchment or wax paper to harden until each piece is well-coated.
 
For presentation, drizzle the melted white chocolate almond bark over the chocolate covered bacon strips. Refrigerate the pig candy until set, approximately thirty minutes. When dry, remove from wax or parchment paper and place in an air tight container until serving.

 

 Pig Candy: Variations to the Recipe

 

Pig Candy

Breaking up Pig Candy for a cookie recipe!


 
With a little creativity, you can easily play with this recipe to create your own delectable Pig Candy. Some popular variations include coating the bacon strips in Cinnamon or Brown Sugar before dipping into the melted chocolate. You might also try adding petite chopped pecans, yummy caramel, Cayenne pepper or other additions that will make this recipe even more unforgettable. If you put your imagination to work, you could even make Pig Candy to use as ingredients in cookie, brownie and even cheesecake recipes! 
 

Hungry for Pig Candy yet?

Maple Bacon Cookies – YUM!

Written by Lillian Tram on May 18th, 2015

If you ever get the chance to visit New York City, you absolutely must add Schmackary’s to your list of must sees. Why? They have more than forty-five different cookie varieties, including regular and gluten-free options and best of all… one of these delectable treats incorporate bacon! Meet the Maple Bacon Cookie from Schmackary’s.
 

Bacon and Cookies are a Perfect Match

 

Maple Bacon Cookies

 

 Schmackary’s is located on West 45th Street and opens each morning at 8 a.m. to begin baking their deliciously massive assortment of cookies, including the above mentioned Maple Bacon Cookie. By 10 a.m., you will think you’ve died and gone to cookie heaven as each delicious batch is removed from the oven and placed on display. Expect to pay a little more for these goodies since they’re baked with love in an official ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ location, as single cookies are $2.75 or you can buy two for $5.00. Take some for the road, choosing either a half-dozen ($14.00) or a dozen ($24.00).

 

Are these gourmet cookies worth the price? Oh, that all depends on how much you love cookies! If you choose the Maple Bacon Cookie, you will be investing in delicious tidbits of candied bacon blended with maple syrup, lovingly mixed with sea salt and toffee bits to deliver an ooey gooey and oh so delightful New York confection. There are many other year round and seasonal favorites you won’t be able to resist so visit Schmackary’s when you’re really hankering for cookies!

 

Maple Bacon Cookies …Not just for New York City Folks

 
There are recipes floating around the internet for several of Schmackary’s best selling cookies, including the oh so yummy Maple Bacon variety. We know you cannot travel to New York every time you get a bacon craving and a yen for something sweet so here is one of our favorites. Let us know what you think of the Maple Bacon Cookie after trying the recipe below which yields about three dozen.
 

Maple Bacon Cookie Recipe

Try this Maple Bacon Cookie Recipe!

 

Ingredients:

Four slices of thick bacon, cooked and cooled

Two eggs

Two and one-half cups of all purpose flour

One-half teaspoon of baking powder

One-half teaspoon of baking soda

One and three-quarter cups of light brown sugar

One-half teaspoon of Kosher salt

Two teaspoons of Maple extract

Three-quarter cup of butter

One cup of semi-sweet chocolate morsels

 

Instructions:

It is important to note that before you begin this recipe, cook the bacon by laying it out flat on a small foil lined baking sheet and top with one-third cup of brown sugar. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and cook the bacon for fifteen to twenty minutes.
 
When the bacon has cooled completely, cut each strip into small pieces and set aside for the recipe. Reduce oven to 375 degrees.
 
Using a mixer, begin by beating the butter and brown sugar for four minutes. Next, add the eggs and extract.
 
Slowly add in the all purpose flour, baking soda and baking powder until blended.
 
Next, fold in the candied bacon pieces and semi-sweet chocolate morsels.
 
Using an ice cream scoop or large spoon, drop rounded cookies onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for approximately ten to twelve minutes.
 
Remove from oven and let sit for two minutes before transferring cookies to a wire rack .
 
 

Easy Bacon Appetizers for Easter

Written by Lillian Tram on January 29th, 2015

Our Line-Up of the Best Bacon Appetizers for Easter

 

Are you planning to have an amazing holiday party this year, but not quite sure what appetizers to serve? Well, one thing is for sure – You can never wrong with bacon. Not to mention, nothing says “Happy Easter” like being surrounded by family and friends, and bacon. So, get your holiday spirit going with these delicious bacon appetizers that are just perfect for Easter and other holiday gatherings:

 

1. Crispy Bacon Grilled Cheese Roll Ups

 

 
These bacon appetizers for Easter are fast and easy to make, yet OH SO DELICIOUS. About the only drawback to serving these bad boys is the fact that you are going to have to make a lot of them, because these are going to go fast. Even so, considering how easy bacon grilled cheese roll-ups are to make, that shouldn’t be too big of a deal. Not only will your guests be delighted, but you will actually have time to spend socializing with everyone.

 

2. Bacon Cheddar Deviled Eggs

 

 
Add a new spin to a classic appetizer for Easter by spicing up your deviled eggs with bacon and cheddar. If your guests love deviled eggs, then these bacon cheddar deviled eggs are going to be the bell of the ball. As an added bonus, you can easily dress them up to match your holiday décor by adding a few sprigs of parsley to offset the deliciously deep red color of bacon.

 

3. Cheese and Bacon Potato Rounds

 

 
Looking for the perfect appetizer for Easter to delight your holiday guests and add some holiday cheer? These cheese and bacon potato rounds are easy to make, entirely festive and scrumptious. Your guests will never have to know just how little time it actually took you to create this ‘rocking delicious’ appetizer for Easter! Besides, your guests will probably be too busy enjoying these bacon inspired appetizers for Easter to care.

 

4. Grilled Bacon Jalapeno Wraps

 

 
These grilled bacon jalapeno wraps may be festive in color, but watch out, because they have a deliciously spicy bite to them. Perfect for a southern holiday gathering or just to appease the few spicy eaters at your festivities, these appetizers are quick, easy and sure to brighten your Easter holiday. The outrageously simple recipe is also fun to experiment with! Try adding some cheddar cheese or ranch to the cream cheese mix to make your own unique recipe.

 

5. Bacon Crackers

 

 
In a tight squeeze? Forgot to pick up some appetizers for Easter to serve your guests? Throw together some of these charming bacon crackers within minutes! You’ve slaved away, preparing an amazing Easter feast. Without remorse, you can still delight your guests and save some of your precious time while enjoying the gathering that you made happen.

 

Easter is a special time of year when families and friends all come together to share the happiness and joy of Christ’s Resurrection. Give your holiday gathering a special touch by serving one of these simple and tasteful bacon appetizers. Your guests will thank you for it, and you will be happy you did.

 

Enjoy this Mini Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

Written by Lillian Tram on October 24th, 2014

On October 21st, we celebrated National Pumpkin Cheesecake Day and in honor of that wonderful dessert, I would like to share a recipe that I adapted from one found on A Family Feast.

 
Cheesecake is awesome any time of year, but add some delicious pumpkin and voila! You have an exceptional and festive treat! Best of all, these Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes do not have to be baked in the oven – which is great if it’s still hot and humid in your neck of the woods.

 

Ready for some Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes?

 

 

Gosh, I am! But first, have you ever wondered how pumpkins became a part of our fall festivities?

 

You may be surprised to learn where the tradition of carving pumpkins came from! Originally, the people of Ireland and Scotland used hollowed-out turnips, placing embers or candles inside. This quickly became a popular Halloween decoration, as tradition suggested that the jack-o-lanterns would ward off evil spirits. These carved out pumpkins were also intended to represent the souls of the dead.

 

It was the Irish who brought this tradition to America, replacing the turnips with pumpkins which were easier to carve and more plentiful in the new world. Eventually, people began carving scary faces and other holiday designs on their jack-o’-lanterns.

 

 

 Easy No-Cook Pumpkin Recipe 

 

First of all, I adore the little glasses shown in the pictures but wouldn’t these be exceptional in some miniature hollowed out pumpkins? Adorable! If I get around to making some, I will be sure to post some pictures for you here! For now, raid the china cabinet or the pantry and choose some interesting glassware for your festive pumpkin treats.

 

Adapted from A Family Feast

 

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

(makes approximately 100 ounces)

 
Crust Ingredients:

  • One package of honey graham crackers
  • ½ stick butter, softened
  • Two tablespoons of granulated sugar
  • Two tablespoons of light brown sugar (dark brown if you desire a richer flavor)

 
Filling Ingredients:

  • One 8-ounce package of cream cheese, softened
  • One 15-ounce can of pumpkin
  • Two teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice
  • One 1-ounce package of sugar free cheesecake-flavored instant pudding mix (or 1/3 of any regular instant pudding)
  • One 14-ounce can of sweetened condensed milk
  • One 12-ounce container of frozen whipped topping or Cool Whip, (you can buy a little extra to use as a garnish, if you like)
  • Cinnamon Sticks, for garnish

 
Directions for Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes:
 
Grind the graham crackers in a food processor until blended into fine crumbs, adding the melted butter and sugars, pulsing until combined.

Put a heaping spoonful of crumbs into each cup and placein the refrigerator while you preparing the filling.

Using a stand mixer equipped with a paddle, beat the cream cheese until creamy and light.

Add pumpkin, spice blend and pudding mix, beating until well-mixed.

Add the condensed milk and mix again.

Using the wire whisk that attaches to your stand mixer, add the tub of whipped topping. Blend well.

Place in the refrigerator for one hour, allowing the mixture to set.

With a large pastry bag and tip, cover the graham cracker crust in each glass with the whipped pumpkin mixture. Refrigerate until you are ready to serve these mini treats.

Before serving, garnish with additional Cool Whip, Cinnamon sticks, and/or Cinnamon sprinkles.

 

Bacon Lovers Trail Mix Recipes!

Written by Lillian Tram on August 31st, 2014

What’s up with these crazy holidays? Can’t say I don’t like them… most of these so-called nationally recognized holidays are entertaining and fun! For example, guess what today is? National Trail Mix Day! But guess whow those of us who love pigs will celebrate this day? By adding bacon to the mix, of course.

 

Celebrate Bacon Trail Mix Day with Us!

 

 
Bacon Trail Mix! Doesn’t that sound great? To properly celebrate this holiday, here are some yummy trail mix ideas using our favorite food ever – BACON! Proceed with caution… these recipes and pictures will make you hungry!
 
Best of all, trail mix is a great source of protein, which the body needs for energy, but the added bacon boosts the protein level even more! Normally, bacon by itself is a yummy treat but with the following five snack mix ideas, you will definitely please the people in your life.
 
To make any of these yummy bacon trail mixes, you will need to fry some bacon until crisp. Put the crisp bacon on a paper towel to drain. Crumble bacon when cool and store in an airtight container until used for any of these pig-errific recipes!

 

Five Bacon Trail Mix Ideas

 
1. Cheez-Its and Bacon Trail Mix – You will need a box of cheese crackers (Cheez-Its are my favorite), 1/2 cup of crumbled bacon, and honey roasted peanuts. Some additional ideas to include in this bacon trail mix is cashews and pretzel sticks.

 

 

2. Toffee and Bacon Trail Mix – Oh, don’t you just love the taste of toffee? Bet you probably haven’t eaten it with bacon though. This trail mix combines bits of toffee with crumbled bacon and pretzels – I like the sticks best but square pretzels are great too!

 

 

3. Munchie Crunchie Bacon Trail Mix–  This one adds a bit of spicy flavor to your bacon trail mix but there is a little more prep work involved. You will need to place the following dry goodies for this bacon trail mix idea in a roasting pan: 3 cups of Crispix breakfast cereal, 5 cups of Tostitos round tortilla chips (white or yellow), 1 bag of microwaved popcorn, popped (I prefer Kettle Corn!), 1 ½ cups of pretzel sticks or squares, 1 cup of Craisins, and 1 cup of pecan halves or mixed party nuts. Preheat your oven to 250 degrees.
 
For the seasoning, you will need to place the following ingredients in a small saucepan: ½ cup of real butter, ½ cup of brown sugar, 1 tablespoon of chile powder, 1 teaspoon of Cayenne pepper and ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Bring to a boil and remove from heat.
 
Pour the saucepan mixture over the dry ingredients and mix well. Bake for one hour in the oven, stirring at regular intervals. Pour the delicious bacon trail mix onto wax paper while it is still hot. Allow the mix to cool before storing in airtight bags.

 

 

4. S’more Bacon Trail Mix –  Now, this one is probably going to be your favorite if you love chocolate and big fluffy marshmallows. Incidentally, yesterday was National Toasted Marshmallow Day – how cool is that? You can celebrate both bacon and marshmallow days with this recipe!
 
Grab a big mixing bowl and add one cup of Golden Grahams cereal, one cup of honey flavor Teddy Grahams, 1/2 cup of Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Chips, 1/2 cup of Milk Chocolate M&M’s, one cup of mini marshmallows, one cup of dehydrated mini marshmallow bites (comes in a cylindrical container near the store’s supply of hot cocoa) and 1/2 cup of bacon pieces (Was that angels singing?).  Stir well and dig in.
 

 
5. Kentucky Bourbon Bacon Trail Mix– Now, this trail mix may not be the healthiest snack ever, but hey – we are choosing foods that complement the delightful taste of bacon. Here are the ingredients you will need: one 15 ounce bag of traditional Chex Mix, one cup of pecan halves, 1/2 pound of crumbled bacon or 6 to 8 slices, 1/2 cup of packed brown sugar, 1/2 cup of real butter, 1/4 cup of light corn syrup, 2 tablespoons of Kentucky bourbon (Jim Beam!) and 3/4 teaspoon Chipotle chili powder.
 
Heat your oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit and line two baking sheets with foil. Spray the foil-lined sheets with cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients (Chex mix, pecans and bacon) and set aside. In a saucepan, heat butter, brown sugar and corn syrup until bubbling around the edges.
 
Continue to cook for five minutes, stirring occasionally, and then remove from heat. Allow the saucepan mixture to cool for two minutes before carefully adding the bourbon and Chipotle powder. Pour this mixture over the dry snack mixture, and toss until evenly coated.
 
Spread the snack mix across the two pans and bake for fifteen minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until the mixture is caramelized. Allow to cool completely, which should take approximately one hour. Break into pieces and store in refrigerator, inside an airtight container to seal in freshness.
 

 

Try these awesome recipes as they are or adapt them to suit your own personal tastes. Leave a comment if you loved them!

jumpboobs.com

DIY Pig-tastic Bacon Butter Recipes!

Written by Lillian Tram on August 19th, 2014

Bacon… and butter, two of the tastiest foods EVER! But have you thought about combining them into one? Bacon butter! Here are some yummy, delicious (and did I say awesome?) recipes for making your own flavored butter!
 
Perfect on a stack of hotcakes and even better on fresh homemade buttermilk biscuits, this bacon butter is a real family pleaser! There are even recipes for a bacon butter corn and turkey rub!
 

DIY Bacon Butter Recipes

 

 

 Not in any special order, here are some bacon butter recipes. Check them out and tell us which ones you loved best… if it is possible to choose just one. I’m just not sure it’s possible.

 

Corn on the Cob Bacon Butter Recipe:

 

You will need to mix together the following: one stick of softened butter (You can use salted if you like, but the bacon brings salt to this recipe, so I recommend the unsalted butter!), one tablespoon of dry ranch dressing mix, and 1/4 cup of crumbled bacon, freshly fried and drained on a paper towel.
 
This is absolutely scrumptious on corn as well as several other foods! The ranch lovers in your family will be hooked!

 

Turkey Bacon Butter Rub Recipe:
 
You will need a food processor (or Ninja!) for this recipe. In the processor, combine the following ingredients: one stick of unsalted butter (same reason as above!), six or eight pieces of freshly fried, drained and crumbled bacon, six leaves of sage (or the equivalent on your spice rack, if fresh isn’t available), one tbsp. of thyme leaves and 1/2 tsp. of fresh ground pepper.
 
Process until this mixture is smooth, and scrape onto Saran wrap. Shape the processed butter into a log and wrap tightly before placing it in the refrigerator.
 
Allow the butter to sit for a few hours or a few days, allowing the flavor to develop. After your turkey is prepared, cut the log of bacon butter into thin discs.
 
Using your hands, carefully slide each disc in between the skin and the meat of your turkey. Let the turkey to sit for a few minutes, allowing the bacon butter to soften underneath the skin.
 
After a few minutes of softening, massage the discs of butter to spread the bacon butter out more evenly under the skin. Follow your original recipe for roasting. The turkey should taste wonderful!

 

 

Bacon Butter Recipe for Breads (and Nearly Anything Else):
 

 
Adapted from Bon Apetit, this bacon butter is absolutely divine and adds a remarkable flavor to everything! With this recipe, you can use a butter mold for a pig-tastic table presentation.
 
You will need the following ingredients to begin: one slice of uncooked bacon, finely chopped, 1/2 cup (or one stick) of softened, unsalted butter (the bacon brings salt to this recipe), one tbsp. of bourbon, one tbsp. of pure maple syrup, and one tsp. of brown sugar.
 
When choosing whether to use light or dark brown sugar, remember the difference between these two is the amount of molasses. Personally, I use the dark brown because the rich flavor pairs well with the scrumptious taste of bacon. You can also add a pinch of salt to this recipe if you like, but remember there is already salt content in the bacon. You don’t want too much salt as this may overpower the other flavors.
 
Chop the uncooked bacon into tiny pieces and fry until crisp before placing on a paper towel to drain, saving a tsp. of the bacon fat for this recipe. In a small mixing bowl, combine the bacon, reserved tsp. of fat, butter, bourbon, brown sugar and maple syrup. Season now with the pinch of salt, if desired, and mix well. Your bacon butter is ready to store using airtight jars in the refrigerator until needed, for up to two weeks.
 

Do you have any great bacon butter recipes?

 

Let us know if you try one or all of these by commenting below!

 

Easy Summertime Meal: Hot Ham and Swiss Sliders

Written by Lillian Tram on May 28th, 2014

 


 

Ham and Swiss Sliders with Tasty Poppy Seed Sauce

 

I found this recipe online and adapted it to suit my needs, serving these sliders to my hungry family at an outdoor birthday event. They were so easy to make ahead of time and store in the refrigerator until time to heat and serve. I used a covered casserole dish to serve these mini hot ham and Swiss sandwiches which made transporting them to the picnic a breeze.
 

The sliders were a huge success as I had only four sandwiches left after serving two pans full. Best of all, there was very little cooking and the assembly was easy. The most important thing to remember is to choose the very best tasting brands of ham, Swiss and dressing for optimal flavor. This recipe is extremely versatile and it will be easy to make small changes to suit your own needs.
 

 

Assembly of the Ham and Swiss Sliders

 

 

Slider Ingredients:

 

24 white dinner rolls

24 pieces of your favorite deli ham

24 small slices of quality Swiss cheese

1/2 cup Miracle Whip or mayo

 

 

Assembly is quite simple, starting with the delicious rolls to use for buns on your sliders. Sara Lee Dinner Rolls, Rhode’s Frozen Rolls, and King’s Hawaiian Rolls are the three best available to use in my area so I went with Sara Lee. Cut each roll in half to form a bun and pile on the goodies.
 

I put two slices of meat on each sandwich and a generous amount of Swiss on top, and then placed each mini slider into the casserole dish.  Try to place the finished sandwiches really close together in the pan so the bread won’t become soggy when you add the poppy seed sauce.  This is your stopping point if making these ham and Swiss sliders in advance. Cover and place in the refrigerator until you are ready to continue.
 

After all of the mini ham and Swiss sliders have been assembled, it is time to make the poppy seed sauce. Don’t be afraid to be creative, adding things to make this recipe your own. Here are your base requirements for the sauce.
 

Poppy Seed Sauce Ingredients:

 

1 Tbsp poppy seeds

1 Tbsp of yellow mustard

1 stick of unsalted or regular butter, melted

1 tsp of onion powder

1/2 tsp of Worcestershire sauce

 

Start by melting the butter in a sauce pan or microwave safe bowl and slowly add all ingredients until everything is mixed well together.  Heat the sauce and allow to cool for a few minutes so the flavor can develop a bit before applying to the TOP of each slider. Use a pastry brush until every mini sandwich has an ample amount of seasoning. Again, wait at least ten minutes to allow the sauce to soak into the buns.
 

In the small town where I live, poppy seeds were unavailable so I chose a good quality Poppy Seed salad dressing from which to start my base. Finding poppy seeds and making your own sauce will likely be best but in a pinch, the dressing works too.  This recipe is so versatile and quick, the changes were a success and no one knew the difference.  If you like, throw in a little brown sugar and switch the yellow mustard for the spicy brown variety.
 

 

 

 

Cover both casserole dishes filled with sliders using aluminum foil and bake in the oven at 350 degrees.  Check after ten minutes and again after twelve minutes.  The sliders are ready when the Swiss cheese is nicely melted. Uncover and cook for an additional three minutes and serve immediately.