Sweets

snowmen protein cookies blog

SNOWMEN PROTEIN COOKIES AND PROTEIN FROSTING

Since Christmas cookies might just be getting stale right about now, or health nuts may be shedding their pantries of sweets and treats, I’m introducing a healthy cookie and frosting recipe that can hang around awhile. This cookie is festive for bringing to a New Year’s Eve party or it can be passed around during January due to it’s snowy theme.

I’m not one to endorse many products, since I don’t want my blog to become a shopping center, but I do happen to love this one particular company. Due to my insane sweet tooth, I need to find some healthy alternatives without feeling deprived.  That’s where The Protein Bakery comes in.  They ship the tastiest protein baked goods that come in pretty wrapping. You can either use them as the perfect late holiday gift, or keep them all to yourself to enjoy.

Now, if you haven’t ordered your cookies yet and the party is well… tomorrow… don’t get hung up! Try this frosting recipe on any of your treats, such as protein bars.

Make sure to Pin more healthy desserts and other recipes on Crawfish & Crunches Pinterest.

Share the photo on @Crawfish.n.crunches on Instagram.

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For two:

Two Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies from the Protein Bakery.

“Frosting” ingredients:
4 tbsp vanilla protein powder                                                                                      4 tbsp plain greek nonfat yogurt
2 Packets Truvia or natural sweetener of choice
2 tbsp sugar free whipped topping, thawed slightly

To make the snowmen:

– 1 Reese’s miniature cup, cut in half

– colored sprinkles for the face, blue eyes, orange nose, red mouth

1) Mix all  frosting  ingredients together in a mixing bowl with a spatula.

2) Spread on icing onto the bottoms of cookies. Decorate your little snowmen.

4) Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate in advance. Save extra frosting for other protein treats.

 

More Posts:

Why I Won’t Be Doing the New Years Day Diet

Tips for a Healthy Holiday Cocktail Hour

Unique Southern Holiday Dishes To Try & Healthy Substitutions

About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the healthy recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She often shares health tips and southern recipes that she turns slightly healthier. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.”

For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here.

For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

For information on Shannon’s social media management business, click here.

 

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Christmas Tree Brownies Crawfish and crunches blog1

Christmas Dessert: Protein Brownies with a Healthy Holiday Frosting

Whether you love baking Christmas cookies or you view it as a total chore, we all could benefit from a shortcut here and there to save time. We could also all use a bit more protein in our diets. What is better then a sweet treat that tastes so decadent, but uses a few healthy ingredients?

Here is the trick: Just order these fabulous Wicked Mint protein brownies then all you have to do is whip up the frosting and sprinkle a few garnishes on top if you choose.

Make sure to Pin more healthy desserts and other recipes on Crawfish & Crunches Pinterest.

Share the photo on @Crawfish.n.crunches on Instagram.

Subscribe to the blog on the right hand sidebar! Receive updates to your inbox.

For two:

Two Wicked Mint Protein Brownies

“Frosting” ingredients:
4 tbsp vanilla protein powder                                                                                      4 tbsp plain greek nonfat yogurt
2 Packets Truvia or natural sweetener of choice
2 tbsp sugar free whipped topping, thawed slightly                                 red food coloring

Optional garnish: Unsweetened coconut flakes as “snow”, crushed peppermint

1) Mix all above ingredients together in a mixing bowl with a spatula.

2) Pour into plastic bag or piping bag. If you use plastic bag, cut a very small hole in the bottom corner to create a piping bag.

3) Cut brownies into triangles. Squeeze on icing in your design of choice. Garnish with “snow” or peppermint.

4) Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate in advance.

 

More Posts:

{ Healthy Gumbo Recipe – Chicken and Sausage }

Tips for a Healthy Holiday Cocktail Hour

Unique Southern Holiday Dishes To Try & Healthy Substitutions

About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the healthy recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She often shares health tips and southern recipes that she turns slightly healthier. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.”

For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here.

For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

For information on Shannon’s social media management business, click here.

 

 

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{ The Protein Bakery – Protein Brownies and Blondies Recipe and Review }  

Normally when writing a product review, I come up with a creative way to use the product in a new recipe.  I kid you not – I just wanted to eat these blondies and brownies all by themselves.  I did not want to mask the flavor and I wanted to savor each and every bite. Not too mention, they were quite filling and satisfying on their own. I present to you – The Protein Bakery. 

Pin  recipes and health tips from Crawfish & Crunches on Pinterest

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What I loved most about the blondies and brownies was that they were wheat-flour free. They grind up their oats to create oat flour, which is exactly how I bake with oat flour at home. They are trans-fat free, preservative free, and made with all-natural ingredients. The brownies often include 6 grams of whey protein. There is no chalky flavor, just a purely decadent treat.

I highly recommend shipping these as holiday gifts. They are the perfect healthy treat.

Pictured above – I topped a black and white brownie, with a black and white blondie from The Protein Bakery. I drizzled it with a Try topping their Pumpkin Walnut Blondie with pumpkin frosting.

Here is the recipe for the Pumpkin Protein Frosting:

3 T Plain Greek Yogurt
1 T cinnamon                                                                                                                            1 T pumpkin pie spice
1 T of Honey or Stevia
1 T of pumpkin puree
1 scoop of vanilla protein powder is optional to increase protein content, this makes the frosting thicker and creamier

Mix ingredients well and add 1-2 T of warm water to loosen frosting if necessary- the more you add the more the frosting will be like a “drizzle” as pictured above.

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More Posts:

{ Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Peppers – Healthy Dinner Recipe }

{ Spooky Recipe: Halloween Pumpkin Peanut Butter Banana Protein Bites }

{ Easy Thanksgiving Turkey for Two }

About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the healthy recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She often shares health tips and southern recipes that she turns slightly healthier. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.”

For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here.

For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

For information on Shannon’s social media management business, click here.
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{ Pumpkin Pie Smoothie Recipe }

It’s pumpkin EVERYTHING season. Since pumpkin is such a healthy and versatile ingredient, it doesn’t just have to be found in your traditional fall baked treats. It goes great in oatmeal, yogurt, and even your morning smoothie. Try out this simple pumpkin pie smoothie recipe and let me know what else you are putting pumpkin in this fall.

What makes this southern you might ask? The mason jar of course.
Make sure to check out crawfish.n.crunches on Instagram.

Pin Crawfish & Crunches recipes and health tips on Pinterest

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For 1 serving:

  • 1/4 Cup Pumpkin puree (canned)
  • 1 Cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
  • 1/2 T cinnamon
  • 1/2 T pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 packet sweetener of choice or 2 drops liquid stevia
  • 6 ice cubes
  • 1/4 C water
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder

1) Blend and serve! Optional garnishes: Crumbled graham cracker, sugar free whip cream, extra cinnamon, sunflower seeds.

More Posts:

Healthy Fall Recipe { Pumpkin Protein Bars }

{ 3 Healthy Easy Must-Make Crockpot Meals }

 

{ Healthy No Heat Lunches to Bring to Work }

About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.”

For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here.

For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

For information on Shannon’s social media management business, click here.
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Healthy Fall Recipe { Pumpkin Protein Bars }

I died inside and went to heaven. Finally, a protein bar that isn’t an ooey gooey mess or dry as chalk. Pumpkin is the answer my friends! Not only is it in season this Fall, but I’ll probably be baking and cooking with it all month long since it is so versatile. These bars are healthy, as easy as pie, moist, and you can change them up however you like them.

Make sure to check out crawfish.n.crunches on Instagram.

Pin Crawfish & Crunches recipes and health tips on Pinterest

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For about 10-12 Bars:

  • 4 egg whites
  • 3/4 C canned pumpkin
  • 1 T vanilla
  • 1/4 cup sugar free pancake syrup
  • 1/4 cup oat flour – grind up your oats in food processor
  • 2 scoops vanilla protein powder (brand will effect taste – I like Amplify whey protein)
  • 1 T pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 T nutmeg
  • 1/2 T ground cloves
  • 1 T cinnamon
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • Optional: Crushed nuts, dried cranberries or raisins

1) Preheat oven to 350 F. In one small mixing bowl, pumpkin, egg whites, vanilla, and pancake syrup.

2) In another bowl, mix your dry ingredients: oat flour, protein powder, spices, baking powder.

3) Add dry to wet ingredients and mix well. At this point you can stir in a sprinkle of nuts or dried cranberries (I like how they puff up when you fold a few into the batter and bake)

4) Spray 8X8 baking pan with non-stick spray. Other pans will work, but in a 9×13 the bars with be thinner. In a pie dish, you could cut them into triangles and they would be shapes like mini pumpkin pies. Pour in mixture.

5) You can sprinkle nuts and dried fruit on top.  Bake 20-25 minutes or until tooth pick comes out clean in the center of the pan.


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More Posts:

{ Healthy Easy Breakfast On-the-Go: Egg Squares } Recipe 1 of 2

{ Tips for Eating Healthy When Dining Out } That Don’t Involve Salad

{ Healthy Easy Sloppy Joes – with a Louisiana twist }

About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.”

For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here.

For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

For information on Shannon’s social media management business, click here.

 

 

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SWEET TOOTH ZAPPERS CRAWFISH & CRUNCHESIf you know anything about me, you know that I am the QUEEN of sweets. I am known for having a small portion for dinner so that I can have a larger portion of dessert. I am known for dashing out of the car before it is even fully parked when going out for ice cream. Well, people who have seen this crazed state of mine may not know that I do not eat like that all week long, and I have to find healthy alternatives to sweets when I am not treating myself on the weekend. Although making your own treats would be great, I am not opposed to store bought items either. Here are a few ideas, tricks, and tips, that are not JUST fruit!

First, try one of these lighter dessert recipes either for entertaining a crowd or to nibble on throughout the week.

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{ Quick & Skinny Southern Banana Pudding }

{ Healthy Dessert Recipe: Louisiana Strawberry & Cream Parfaits }

If you are attending a party and don’t want to be teased by a giant chocolate cake or endless brownies. Bring your own slightly healthier treat.

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Think Louisiana Peach Cobbler with Pecan Praline Streusel. Hey, it’s no peach in the calorie department, but it has about half the sugar of regular versions.

These pound cake parfaits are light and so easy to make: { Super Simple Pound Cake Pudding Parfait }

Okay, so you hate cooking, you don’t have time, or you just need something in a pinch. Here are a few of my favorite individually portioned store bought desserts:

Weight Watchers Ice Cream Bars: I love the GIANT Chocolate Fudge Bar

Protein bars. Quest Bars to be exact. Find them at your local GNC. Chocolate chip cookie dough, s’mores and Oreo are excellent.

Jello Sugar free pudding cups. These are especially convenient. The instant powdered packages take about five minutes to make as well.

A few tips:

Always have a few mints on hand to pop in after you eat lunch or dinner. Once you cleanse your pallet with that, you may be less likely to splurge on dessert.

Yes, fruit is one of the best options. Aim to have about one small piece a day.

Do not overload on artificial sweeteners. Sweets are meant to be a treat and even the sugar free kind should be in moderation.

Live a little! Live by the 90% clean, 10% cheat rule. If your week was 90% full of healthy foods and exercise, go for that brownie sundae on the weekend and enjoy every moment. If you week was a wreck, try some small portions of the recipes and tricks above to stay on track.

 

More Posts:

{ How to Cut Back on Bread – Recipes, Tips, and More }

{ Ways to Use Greek Yogurt Your Totally Missing Out on }

{ 3 Tips and Tricks for Packing Healthy Snacks When Flying }

About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.”

For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here.

For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

For information on Shannon’s social media management business, click here.

 

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mom's famous banana bread crawfish.n.crunches insta

{ Mom’s Famous Banana Bread }

Typically my dessert postings are “southern turned healthier,” but there is NO messing with my mom’s banana bread recipe. I don’t care if I have to run ten miles to burn it off. The inside is most and fluffy, and the outside has a little crispness. You can make it with or without nuts, but either way it’s delicious.

If you are feeling creative, try making my other breakfast or brunch recipes such as { Sunday Morning Protein Waffles } or { Eggs Benedict over Crawfish Cakes }

Make sure to check out my Pinterest for more recipes.

Tag me on Instagram in your creations.

 

mom's famous banana bread crawfish.n.crunches blog

Ingredients:

  • 1 C very over-ripe peeled bananas, about 2 bananas
  • 1 C Sugar
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 1/2 C Flour
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/2 C sour cream
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1/2 C walnuts or pecans

1) Preheat oven to 350.

2) Grease your 4×8 loaf pans with butter.

3) Mash bananas lightly into large mixing bowl. Mix all ingredients with electric mixer except nuts.

4) Chop nuts and fold into batter.

5) Bake for 50 minutes. Check center with a toothpick to make sure it comes out clean. Cooking time depends on the size of the baking dish, so watch carefully.

 

 

About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.” For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here. For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

More Posts:

{ Five Ways to Walk Yourself Fit }

{ Skinny Kickin’ Tuna Melts }

{ 3 Skinny Must-Make Southern Summer Desserts }

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threesouthernsummerdesserts crawfish and crunches

Even though it’s sweltering hot here in the south, kids are going back to school in two weeks! Some of us need to make these healthy southern summer desserts before it’s too late. As the  barbecues and the vacations wind down, make sure to offer to bring dessert so you can show off these fresh fruit ladened treats.

Pairs well with  { Honey Creole Bacon Wrapped Pork Tenderloin } or { Andouille Sausage Deviled Eggs }

Make sure to check out my Pinterest for more recipes.

Tag me on Instagram in your creations.

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{ SUPER SIMPLE  POUND CAKE PUDDING PARFAIT }

No bake, no cook. Pick your local fresh berries and throw it in a mason jar and boom, you’ve got yourself a southern dessert.

Click here for the recipe..

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{ QUICK & SKINNY SOUTHERN BANANA PUDDING}

Since these are chilled in the fridge, it makes for the most perfect treat to cool you off. Recipe here.

 

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{ LOUISIANA PEACH COBBLER WITH PECAN PRALINE STREUSEL }

You really cannot pass up cobbler with fresh peaches. Your house will smell amazing and with a big dollop of frozen vanilla greek yogurt or light whipped topping, you will be swinging on your front porch in delight. Recipe here.

 

 

About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long.  On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.” For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here. For the long version about how the site was born, read more. 

More Posts:

{ Five Ways to Walk Yourself Fit }

{ Skinny Kickin’ Tuna Melts }

{ skinny New Orleans muffaletta chicken }

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LouisianaPeachCobberwithPecanStreuselcrawfishandcrunches

{ Louisiana Peach Cobber with Pecan Praline Streusel }

Don’t let the streusel scare you. For awhile, I could never get a streusel topping crunchy and the way I wanted it.  It would take way too long to cut in the butter with knives and it was just no fun.  Thanks to Southern Living Magazine I learned a new way and a really awesome cobbler recipe. Once you get this streusel down pat, you can change up your fruit as you like! Peaches are in season in the south.  I adapted the ingredients slightly from this recipe, to make it a little healthier.

Pairs well with  { Honey Creole Bacon Wrapped Pork Tenderloin } or { Andouille Sausage Deviled Eggs }

Make sure to check out my Pinterest for more recipes.

Tag me on Instagram in your creations.

Pecan Praline Streusel Ingredients:
3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans
Peach filling Ingredients:
6 cups peeled and sliced fresh peaches (about 6 large)
3 tablespoons whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon cinnamon

 

Optional: Serve with vanilla low sugar frozen yogurt or light whipped topping.

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2. For the streusel: Stir together first 3 ingredients in a large bowl; add flour and pecans, and stir until blended. Let stand 20 minutes or refrigerate while you prepare your filling until mixture is firm enough to crumble into small pieces.

3. Stir together peaches, flour, nutmeg, and cinnamon in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium, and boil, stirring occasionally, 6 to 7 minutes or until juices have thickened.

4. Spoon mixture into a lightly greased 9-inch square baking dish. Crumble streusel over hot peach mixture.

3. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown.

4. Serve warm with ice cream or light whipped topping.

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About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long.  On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.” For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here. For the long version about how the site was born, read more. 

More Recipes:

{ Quick & Skinny Southern Banana Pudding }

{ Skinny Kickin’ Tuna Melts }

{ skinny New Orleans muffaletta chicken }

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Quick & Skinny Southern Banana Pudding crawfish and crunches

{ Quick & Skinny Southern Banana Pudding }

Everyone needs a signature banana pudding recipe in the south. It’s perfect for bringing to a party or a barbecue, or if you make the healthy version, why not nibble on it all week for dessert? It comes together in literally five minutes. A delicious cool summer treat with no guilt necessary.

Pairs well with { Honey Creole Baked Chicken Tenders } or { Andouille Sausage Deviled Eggs }

Make sure to check out my Pinterest for more recipes.

Follow the blog on the homepage right hand side to receive recipes to your inbox.

Tag me on Instagram in your creations.

For about 4 servings:

  • 1 Box instant vanilla sugar free fat free pudding
  • 2 C light whipped topping
  • 2 large sliced bananas
  • 2 C fat free milk
  • 2 C vanilla wafers

1) Whisk your pudding packet with milk for about two minutes. Chill according to directions.

2) In your serving dish of choice, either one large bowl or individual glasses or bowls, layer your vanilla wafers, then pudding then whipped topping, then banana. Repeat if necessary.

3) Chill for at least two hours and serve cold.

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About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.” For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here. For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

More Recipes:

{ Quick & Healthy Summer Broccoli Stem Slaw Recipe }

{ cajun caviar }

{ skinny New Orleans muffaletta chicken }

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July Fourth Recipe: { Skinny S’mores Ice Cream Sandwiches } 

I don’t know about all of your Independence Day celebrations, but in the south, it’s a fourth of July weekend. That means all day Friday, Saturday, and Sunday we will be barbecuing, boating, sunning and boozing. Well, all of that fun with too much indulgence can put a hurtin’ on your waistline. Since I love my desserts so darn much and I can’t pass them up this weekend, I created a little bit healthier ice cream sandwich recipe. Feel free to use full fat ingredients if you would like, but here is my lighter take.

Pairs well with  { Honey Creole Baked Chicken Tenders } or  { Andouille Sausage Deviled Eggs }

Make sure to check out my Pinterest for more recipes.

Follow the blog on the homepage right hand side to receive recipes to your inbox.

Tag me on Instagram in your creations.

For about 8 ice cream sandwiches

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For the waffles:

  • 4 servings Whole wheat waffle mix of choice + required ingredients if indicated (milk, egg, oil)
  • If your mix requires milk, try using unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 scoops chocolate protein powder
  • nonstick spray
  • 1/2 C water

1) Follow the ingredients and the directions for your waffle mix of choice. I chose a whole wheat blend which required adding milk, egg, and oil.

2) Once your waffle mix is prepared to a batter like consistency – add in 2 scoops of whey protein powder and 1/2 C extra water. Whisk until combined well.

3) Heat your waffle maker and spray with nonstick spray. Pour in batter and cook waffles just until soft and removable from the waffle maker. Don’t make them hard or crispy! They will only harden further in the freezer.

4) Allow to cool in freezer. Break or cut into quarters.

For the filling:

  • 1/4 C marshmallow spread, or light cool whip topping if you really want to save calories.
  • 1 carton low sugar graham cracker or s’mores ice cream – my favorite is a version called “Graham Slam” – if you can’t find this use another low sugar flavored ice cream of choice, such as chocolate, marshmallow, or vanilla
  • hot fudge drizzle optional for serving immediately

1) Spread your marshmallow then ice cream on sandwiches. Move quickly so they don’t melt.

2) Serve immediately or wrap individually with plastic wrap and place in freezer.

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About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long.  On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.” For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here. For the long version about how the site was born, read more. 

More Recipes:

{ gulf shrimp stuffed portobello mushrooms }

{ cajun caviar }

{ skinny New Orleans muffaletta chicken }

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{ New Orleans Beignets with Salted Caramel & Cream Cheese Icing }

“Cafe Au Lait makes it possible to get out of bed in the morning, beignets make it worthwhile.”

This couldn’t really be more true. Cafe Au Lait is a French phrase which means “coffee on milk.” It is used to refer to a beverage made with strong, fresh coffee and hot milk. Now, I always dip my beignets, the French word for a pastry made from fried dough, in coffee, or even hot chocolate at times.

I never really thought it was possible to replicate at home, or at the very least I thought it would be very messy and tricky. Well, my dreams were made when I used my box mix, yes I said box mix, that can be bought in stores or ordered here. Remember, this blog is about realistic recipes as mentioned in the tagline. The mess of flour and dough and frying splatters are enough to take on, I didn’t want to measure out the ingredients myself, make more of a mess and risk messing up the recipe. With the box, you just add water. Phew.

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Now, beignets are traditionally doused with powdered sugar, but if they aren’t dipped in hot chocolate or coffee, sometimes I find they need a little something. And what about in summer Louisiana heat when hot chocolate or hot coffee are just not happening? Most out-of-towners are used to a cream filled center like in donuts. I find that turns just turns a beignet into a square donut, hence why I created the caramel and icing drizzle.

If it’s your first time making beignets and you don’t want to make things tricky, just try the powdered sugar. If I had to choose between one topping, I would make the cream cheese icing over the salted caramel, but using both kicks it up a notch.

Make sure to check out my Pinterest for more recipes.

Follow the blog on the homepage right hand side to receive recipes to your inbox.

Tag me on Instagram in your creations.

This is what I pretty much did for the: Salted caramel sauce

Cream cheese icing:

  • 8 T softened butter
  • 4 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 3 cup powdered sugar
  • 4 T warm water
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 t kosher salt

1) Cook beignets according to box. I did a small trial run on a few – learning that my oil was too hot and the dough was too thin. They improved as I practiced.

2) Let cool and drain on paper towels. Powder with sugar then drizzle on your icing and sauce. You may need to microwave sauce briefly in order to get it to a drizzly consistency.

3) Serve hot! I covered mine with foil, then heated it up later at a party in the microwave just for a minute or two. They are best hot, but as my husband says, “I eat beignets up to three days later!”

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About the Blogger:

Shannon Gagnon is the recipe developer, food stylist and food photographer behind Crawfish & Crunches. She is known for turning delicious southern staples into slightly healthier versions that can be enjoyed all week long. On her blog you can find just what the tagline says, “Realistic recipes, rich southern culture, and health conscious habits.” For inquiries about positioning your brand in front of Shannon’s followers click here. For the long version about how the site was born, read more.

More Recipes:

{ Texas Taco Style Stuffed Bell Peppers }

{ tangy avocado dream dressing }

{ low carb jambalaya skewers }
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Mother's Day Berries & Cream pudding parfaits crawfish and crunches

{ Super Simple Mother’s Day Pound Cake Pudding Parfait }

Ya’ll. We are going to share a secret about this Mother’s Day recipe. No one has to know this dish takes three steps to make. No one has to know that it’s low in calories. No one has to know that there is no baking involved. Mom and your guests just need to know it’s delicious and it’s beautiful no matter how you serve it.

Get out your mason jars, your martini glasses, your champagne flutes, whatever you fancy, and serve it up in minutes.

Be sure to pin it, or share on Instagram. Tag me in your creations!

Ingredients:

  • 1 small package sugar free fat free vanilla pudding (4 oz)
  • 2 C skim milk
  • 1 container light whipped topping (12 oz)
  • 1 store-bought pound cake, or angel food cake for lower calories
  • 1 small container blueberries
  • 1 small container blackberries
  • 1 small container raspberries, or sliced strawberries if preferred

Directions:

  1. Whisk your milk and your pudding package together in a large bowl, until it starts to thicken. Set in fridge to chill and set.
  2. Once your pudding has set, in your glass of choice, layer berries, then pudding, then pound cake (torn into bite size pieces), then whip cream, then top with a few berries. You can’t go wrong here, it doesn’t have to be perfect!
  3. Serve chilled.

Mother's Day Berries & cream pudding parfaits crawfish and crunches

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Simple strawberry & cream parfaits

{ Louisiana strawberry & cream parfaits }

This healthy recipe may be completely simple and not earth shattering at all to some, however it is something I make often with whatever fruit is in season. The strawberries in Louisiana are killin’ it right now! It’s a great way to get some greek yogurt in your diet without TOO much added sugars and additives that the store-bought brands often contain. Also – parfaits tend to be loaded with granola. While very yummy, not very healthy. Kashi cereals are usually my replacement for granola in these types of treats.

For one:

  • 1/2 cup plain fat free greek yogurt
  • 2 squirts of liquid stevia – vanilla flavored, or 2 Splenda packets, or sweetener of choice
  • 1/2 cup fat free sugar free cool whip
  • 2 T Kashi Go Lean Crisp
  • 1 drizzle honey (optional)
  • 1/4 C strawberries or food of choice

1) Put greek yogurt in your bowl, then sweeten with your stevia or sweetener of choice, mix.

2) Layer on your cool whip, then cereal, then strawberries, then honey.

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lighter strawberry graham cracker layers of love

{ light & lovely strawberry layer pudding pie }

When spring hits, my taste buds automatically start thinking less heavy and rich, and more light and fluffy. I over indulged on last weeks Mississippi Mud Brownie recipe, so this weekend I was thinking fresh fruit and whipped topping for dessert.This is the perfect crowd-pleaser and a visually beautiful dessert to wow your Easter brunch guests.

I adapted this recipe from a favorite blog of mine, South Your Mouth, to make things just a little more guilt-free. After all this blog is about balance and making a few tweaks to some favorite southern recipes right?

For 6-8 servings:

  • 2 lb strawberries
  • 2-3 sleeve graham crackers
  • 8 oz light or fat free cream cheese -softened to room temp.
  • 2 3.4 ounce fat free sugar free vanilla instant pudding, or fat free sugar free cheese cake instant pudding
  • 1 14 oz sweetened condensed milk (optional for those watching their waistline – but oh-so-good)
  • 3 cups skim milk
  • 1 12 oz carton light cool whip

1 ) Slice your strawberries into thin pieces. Set aside.

2 ) With a mixer, blend your cream cheese with condensed milk. If you choose to omit condensed milk, start to blend in your pudding and milk right away. Make sure to blend until smooth and starts to thicken. Blend in 2 cups cool whip.

3 ) Line your trifle dish, or whichever serving dish of choice with graham cracker. I think a martini glass, a pretty glass of choice, a trifle, or even a shallow clear pie bowl is prettier than a 13×9 pan.

4 ) Pour in a layer of cream cheese mix, then a layer of strawberry and repeat. Have fun with this, it won’t feel perfect but even layers make for a pretty picture.

5 ) Top the dish with remaining cool whip and a few crushed graham crackers.

6 ) Cover and place in the fridge for 6-8 hours.

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mississippi mud brownies 2 crawfish.n.crunches

{ Mississippi Mud Brownies }

I can never make these again. If I make something I like too much, I can eat the whole pan! They were that good. I’m obsessed with any dessert that is sea salted. The sweet and salty combo is to die for. This is my version, whereas I know other recipes involve nuts and chocolate chips, I incorporated crushed pretzel. Watch your waistlines ladies and gents! These are not to be kept in the home. They are meant to be brought to a party as soon as possible and sent off to neighbors 😉

Ingredients:

  • Box Brownie Mix
  • 2 Eggs
  • Oil (according to box, plus 3 T more)
  • 2 cups mini marshmellow
  • 2 cups crushed pretzels

For cream cheese frosting:

  • 4 ounces unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 T warm water
  • 3 T unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 drops black food coloring

For garnish: 2 T Flaky sea salt

Directions:

1) Pre-heat your oven to the directions on brownie box. Grease your 9×13 pan with butter or cooking spray.

2) Make your brownie batter according to box. Bake for 3 minutes short of cooking time.

3) While it’s baking, crush your pretzels in a bag with a meat mallet, or get some anger out and punch it! When you take your brownies out, cover the brownies with pretzels then marshmallows. Broil until lightly browned, or burnt if you like them burnt.

Mississippi mud brownies crawfish.n.crunches

4) For your icing – beat together butter and cream cheese in a large bowl with electric mixer. On low speed, slowly add in your powdered sugar, cocoa powder, black food coloring. Beat in vanilla, then warm water. The warm water is so that you don’t have to thick of a consistency. You want to be able to pour this over your brownies easily and spread easily.

5) When the brownies are still warm, pour over icing and spread. Top with sea salt. Let them cool for 20 minutes at least. They will be super messy to serve, which is half the ooey gooey fun, so serve them either cake style, in big squares or smaller squares for a party.

peanut butter cup pie crawfish.n.crunches{ Dad’s Favorite Peanut Butter Cup Pudding Pie }

Once you make this pie, you will never want to slave over a hot oven again! It’s so easy with a no-bake pudding recipe. I lightened up a few items and you can add or subtract as many Reese’s Cups as you like. For Dad, I would probably use the full fat recipe, but my husband and I would never notice the difference so I would make the lighter one for us.

Ingredients:

  • 1- Keebler Ready Maid Graham Cracker Crust
  • 2- Small Boxes of Jell-O Instant Sugar Free Chocolate Pudding
  • 1½ Cups Fat Free Milk
  • ½ Cup Peanut Butter
  • 1 Tub Light Cool Whip
  • One large pack of Reese’s cups or Reese’s mini’s chopped (as many or as little as you like)

Directions:

  1. Combine Jell-O Pudding and Milk in a Bowl and Blend on High for 1 Minute or until thick.
  2. Add in Peanut Butter and Blend again
  3. Slowly Stir In 1 Tub of Cool Whip Topping
  4. Pour Mixture into the Graham Cracker Crust
  5. Top with your chopped Reese’s
  6. You can freeze this pie to make an ice cream consistency, or you can refridgerate for about 2 hours to have the pudding consistency.

snickerdoodle blondies crawfish.n.crunches{ snickerdoodle blondies with cinnamon cream cheese icing }

Super easy. Super yummy. With a cough-box mix-cough, these are done in no time. Warning: the cream cheese icing is so addicting! Of course, this is not one of my “lighter” recipes. Instead, it’s actually a late Valentines day treat for the hubby, since we were so wrapped up in Mardi Gras. Tough life right?

Recipe adapted from this pretty little blogger – thank you thank you! My husband loved it!

For the blondies:

  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon

Topping:

  • 4 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons sugar

Cream cheese icing:

  • 8 T softened butter
  • 4 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 3 cup powdered sugar
  • 4 T warm water
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 t kosher salt

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl combine the cake mix and 1 T cinnamon.

2) Beat in egg and melted butter.

3) Grease your 8×8 oven-proof pan with butter. Place your batter in there and press down so that it lays flat and even. Top with your cinnamon sugar mixture.

4) Bake 20 minutes.

5) While it’s baking, beat all ingredients for your cream cheese icing.

6) When the blondies are done, let them cool about 15 minutes then spread cream cheese icing on top. The icing will pick up the cinnamon and sugar and they will meld beautifully together. If you have extra icing, either freeze it or eat it like I did :)

7) Let your icing set about 30 minutes. Cut into small squares and serve.

sunday morning protein waffles{ Sunday Morning Protein Waffles }

Although protein waffles sort of sounds like an oxymoron, you wouldn’t believe how easy it is to sneak a little added protein into your breakfast. My husband and I have been eating these or a variation of these, sometimes pancakes, since we’ve been together! We start looking forward to them on Friday. You don’t even have to head to church all bloated or hopped up on sugar. They are guilt free!

For two large Belgian style waffles:

  • 1 cup whole wheat complete pancake mix
  • 2 scoops vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tbsp semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tbsp light butter ( for topping )
  • sugar free syrup (for topping )
  • Nonstick cooking spray

1) While your waffle maker is heating, mix your pancake mix, protein powder, eggs, water, cinnamon and chocolate chips with a whisk. You may need to adjust the consistency based on your brand of protein powder. If it’s too runny, add a little pancake mix and protein powder.

2) Spray your waffle maker with non-stick cooking spray. Pour batter in to fill. Cook until golden brown.

3) Serve with light butter and sugar free syrup.

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