Posts Tagged ‘potluck’

Mini Frittatas Recipe

Mini Frittata PlatedI take a lot of the food I make to J’s playgroup. We will often get together at a park or someone’s house in the morning and make it a pot luck. I’ve been making these mini frittatas for quite awhile now. It’s become my de facto dish.

My recipe is based on Giada De Laurentiis’ mini frittata dish, but I alter quite a bit. Click that link and you’ll go to her original recipe.

I usually make two kinds of frittatas. The first is just egg and cheese. To the other half of this mixture, I’ll usually add something like sausage. I typically use vegetarian sausage…I get a big box of Morningstar Farm’s sausage patties (not the maple flavor – yuck) from Costco. However this time I had leftovers from making Sausage, Mushroom and Broccoli Calzones so I used some of that. It was delish!

Here’s my soapbox disclaimer…use organic ingredients whenever you can!! Substitute conventional if you must, but I’m really trying to cut back on my GMOs!

Greased Muffin Tin

This pan may look like it has enough cooking spray in it, but it doesn’t!! I forgot to spray the sides and it was a real b*tch to clean.

Get out your 24-cup mini muffin pan and liberally spray it with cooking spray. I didn’t spray enough and it took forever to clean the darn thing. (Thanks to my husband for scrubbing the pan for me!)

Crack your organic eggs into a large bowl and add salt and freshly ground organic pepper.

Frittata Cracked Eggs

Remember to crack your eggs in a perfect circle/flower shape. KIDDING!! I didn’t even realize this was how I cracked them until I loaded this picture onto my computer.

Whole milk for the frittataMeasure out a half cup of organic milk, pour it in and whisk everything together.

This is where I stopped the process to make both kinds of frittatas. I poured half of the mixture into a 2-cup pyrex and then added a handful of shredded cheese. Pouring the eggs into a measuring cup makes it very easy to fill the muffin tin.

Pour the egg mixture for your frittata into a Pyrex.

I poured the egg and cheese mixture into as many tins as it would fill. The cheese sinks to the bottom of the measuring cup so you may have to scoop a little out to make sure each frittata has cheesey goodness inside. Side note: I ended up overfilling them (keep reading for further clarification).

Then I poured the remaining eggs from the large bowl into the pyrex and added about a half cup of the calzone mixture. I chopped it up into small pieces. Once added to the eggs, I put in a handful of shredded mozzerella cheese. You can use almost any filling in these frittatas. I hate to waste food so this was one way to use up my left overs.

Frittata sausage filling from leftover calzone

Now we see the result of overfilling the trays. Giada’s recipe says it makes 40 mini frittatas. HA! This time I got 23. In hindsight, I do fill the cups almost 3/4 full and that’s too much. I’d say 1/3 full would be better.Frittata Filled Tray

Frittata Cooked

This picture was taken as soon as them came out of the oven and I set them on the counter. Already the plain egg and cheese frittatas are deflating. The sausage filled ones don’t puff up as much.

Bake at 375° until the center of the eggs are not shiny. The original recipe says to bake for 8 – 10 minutes but mine took 14 minutes. I set my time for 8 minutes, checked them and saw how uncooked they looked. I put them in for 3 more minutes…checked again and decided they needed 3 additional minutes.

When you first take them out of the oven, they will be puffed up and beautiful. Then 5 seconds later they deflate.

Mini Frittatas
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: American, Italian
Serves: 24 - ish
  • Nonstick vegetable oil cooking spray
  • 8 large organic eggs
  • ½ cup whole organic milk
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground organic black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup grated cheese
  • ½ cup chopped sausage or other filling (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Spray a 24-cup mini-muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray.
  3. Whisk eggs, milk, black pepper and salt together in a large bowl.
  4. Pour mixture into a measuring cup and add the cheese and sausage (or other filling) if using.
  5. Fill each cup about ½ full.
  6. Bake at 375°F and check after 8 minutes. Cooking times will vary depending on your ingredients and how full you make the muffin tins.

Pumpkin Pie Minis Recipe…Because Everything Is Adorable When It’s Bite-Sized

This is Bakerella’s picture – not mine!! Beautiful pumpkin shaped mini-pies.

It’s fall (well, not quite here in Southern California, so let’s just pretend) and you know what that means…pumpkin time!! J was nagging at me a couple weeks ago to make her a pumpkin pie. She’s not yet four so cut her some slack. (Spend some time with a preschooler and you’ll understand Freud’s concept of “id”…they’re walking talking examples of this!) Not wanting to cook an entire pumpkin pie, I started searching for alternative recipes and found Bakerella’s Pumpkin Pie Bites recipe. My first attempt was ho-hum but my next attempt was a winner! I tweaked it slightly and the recipe is listed below. I incorporated it into my Halloween Party spread and I may even make them for Thanksgiving. Although, Curt says he prefers traditional pie, so we’ll see.

Of course, I didn’t take any pictures of my pies so you’ll just have to use your imagination and reference Bakerella’s page until I make them again.

In all of my cooking, I use organic ingredients whenever possible, but you can also swap for the conventional counterpart.

Pumpkin Pie Minis


Pie dough – enough for one covered pie (2 crusts). I made mine from scratch, but you can also use pre-made refrigerated dough.

8 oz organic cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup organic sugar
14 oz (1 can) organic canned pumpkin (*sooooo…I just noticed that Bakerella’s recipe doesn’t say 1 CAN, it says 1 CUP…well, mine are real pumpkin-y!)
3 organic eggs
1 teaspoon organic vanilla
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
3″ round cookie cutter

Whipped Cream (I stabilize mine for displaying at parties)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
Use the cookie cutter to cut 24 discs (12 from each pie crust). If using refrigerated dough, you will need to roll the dough thinner than it comes out of the package.
Press dough into a 24 cup mini muffin tray. Make sure there is a little bit of dough overlapping outside of each pie. It makes it easier to get them out of the muffin tin.
Brush egg white from one egg to the top edges of each pie. (I didn’t do this and my pies didn’t get that nicely browned hue. They still tasted great!)
Mix cream cheese and sugar together until well-blended. If you don’t do this, you’ll have little white blobs of cream cheese throughout the filling.
Add canned pumpkin, remaining 2 eggs, vanilla and pumpkin pie spice together until thoroughly combined.
Spoon mixture into each pie crust.
Bake for 15 – 18 minutes.
Remove pies to cool.

Once cooled, it’s a little tricky to get them out of the muffin tin. I wiggled the edges of the crust and used a very small spatula to remove the pies. (It was the spatula that came with my mini-Cuisinart.)

Add whipped cream to each pie just before serving, or if you want to do ahead, use stabilized whipped cream. I put mine in a zip top bag and cut a small hole in the corner so I could pipe a circle on top of each pie.

Makes 24 pies. Keep refrigerated.


Halloween Tricks & Treats – Party Food

Boo Sign

Boo SignSo the past few years I’ve hosted a Halloween party for kids and adults. Last year I sort of went all out and made a crazy amount of Pinterest inspired food. This year I added a few new items and made many of the popular items from the previous year. I’ve learned a few tricks along the way so I thought I would share them.

Here is the menu: (Each link takes you to another site with the recipe or my own post with the recipe and my tips.)

  • Chips & Salsa (no need for a recipe here…open a bag of chips and a jar of your favorite salsa)
  • Guacamole Pumpkin – make your favorite guacamole or buy it. Carve out a small pumpkin.
    Guacamole Pumpkin
  • Cheese broomsticks *TRICK – use a semi-soft cheese like harvarti or mozzerella. I tried it with cheddar and it wouldn’t roll around the pretzel. It was too hard and broke into pieces.Halloween Cheese Broomsticks
  • Deviled Eggs w/black olive spiders – make deviled eggs with your favorite recipe then cut whole olives in half for the body and smaller slivers for the legs. These can be made a day ahead (the eggs can even be boiled a few days ahead). *TRICK – use medium or large olives. I’ve used large the last two times I’ve made them and next year I will try medium because the “bodies” are almost as big as the yolk.Deviled Spider Eggs
  • Tangerines with celery stems – Peel tangerines and stick a small “stem” of celery on top.Tangerine Pumpkins Banana Ghosts
  • Banana Ghosts – Peel banana, cut in half, add two mini-chocolate chips for eyes
  • Hot Dog Mummies – Use your favorite hot dog (I use veggie dogs). Cut dog in half, wrap a strip of crescent roll dough around it. These can be made ahead and placed on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350° until the dough is brown, about 15 minutes.Hot Dog Mummies
  • Pasta Salad – So many recipes…mine includes marinated artichoke hearts, red pepper, red onion, bocconcini (small fresh mozzerella balls), olive and Halloween pasta shapes bought from World Market. For dressing I use olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt pepper and some mayo. This can be made a day or two ahead. The longer it sits, the better it tastes!
  • Rice Krispy Treats – Cut the treats into small squares, then drizzle orange and white Candy Melts over the top and add orange, black and white sprinkles. Michael’s usually has them on sale around Halloween and if you use a coupon you can save even more.
  • Pumpkin Pie Bites – Based on Bakerella’s recipe with a few tweaks and tricks.
  • Cheddar Bunnies – I like Annie’s Organic Cheddar Snack Bunnies.
  • Pretzels – use your leftovers from the broomsticks
  • Mac N Cheese – I made two boxes for the kids to eat. I should have made three.
  • Halloween Candy

In addition to all that food, I also go crazy and make decorated sugar cookies. These are definitely make-aheads and will stay fresh for over a week as long as they are stored in an air-tight container or packaged individually.

Halloween Spider Cookies 2014

This Year’s Party Favor for Adults – 2014

Halloween Spider Cookies 2013

Last Year’s Party Favor for Adults – 2013

Up next: Halloween Tricks & Treats – Costumes


Healthy-ish Banana Bread Mini Muffins Recipe

Banana MuffinsI try to eat more health food than junk food…try, anyway. I do eat organic whenever possible so the recipe below is best made with organic ingredients. I’ve modified a wonderful recipe by Elise Bauer over at You can find the original recipe here.

I like to make mini muffins because they’re an easy snack for J to eat. Since she’s almost 4, she thinks I’m saying “Minnie” muffins instead of mini so she gobbles them up, probably expecting her beloved mouse to appear when she’s finished. Gotta love phonics!

In all of my cooking, I use organic ingredients whenever possible, but you can also swap for the conventional counterpart.

Healthy-ish Banana Bread Mini Muffins Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: snack, breakfast
Cuisine: American
Serves: 24
  • 2-3 ripe organic bananas, peeled *
  • ⅓ cup melted organic unsalted butter
  • ½ cup of organic sugar
  • 1 organic egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • Dash of organic cinnamon
  • Dash of organic nutmeg
  • 1 cup all-purpose organic unbleached flour
  • ½ cup organic whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons organic flax seeds or chia seeds (optional)
  • Cooking spray (canola preferred)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and spray the bottoms of a 24-cup mini muffin pan with canola oil.
  2. Smash the ripe bananas with a fork until smooth in a medium sized bowl.
  3. *Sometimes I add a grated carrot or grated zucchini in with the banana. Swap a banana for a zucchini...your kids (or husband) will never know! If you use zucchini, grate and then squeeze out the excess water.
  4. Stir the melted butter into the mashed bananas / vegetables.
  5. Mix in the baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and flax seeds.
  6. Stir in the sugar, beaten egg, and vanilla extract.
  7. Mix in the flour. The consistency may be thick and that's ok.
  8. Drop a full teaspoon into each muffin tin. Bake for 18 - 20 minutes at 350°F. Test with a toothpick at 18 minutes. You don't want overcooked lumps of coal!
  9. Remove from oven and cool on a rack for 5 minutes. Remove muffins and continue to cool on a rack.
  10. Enjoy!



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