Recipe: Four Minute, Four Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies (or: super easy, super tasty flourless peanut butter chocolate chip cookies of pinnable awesomeness)

It will probably take you longer to read this post than it will take to stir up these cookies. I’m not sure if they really take four minutes to assemble, I didn’t time it, but they are super quick! The boys and I invented these for Pinterest Day and they said, “Now, YOU have something to put on Pinterest!” So, I’m posting here and will pin away!

I continue to boggle that no flour is required to make these tasty morsels. Here is the recipe:

First, you have two options:

2/3 c. peanut butter

1/3 c. Nutella

OR: 1 c. peanut butter (any kind)

1 c. sugar

2 eggs

dash of vanilla

optional: chocolate chips

Stir all ingredients together, plop on cookie sheet and bake at 350 for about ten minutes.


These cookies are chewy and delicious and you won’t believe they are flourless and so simple!



Time to Pin it! The boys will be so excited! 🙂


“Being bored is an insult to oneself.” –Jules Renard

This afternoon I made such a long status update on Facebook that I joked it should really be a blog post. So, I decided to convert it into one! (albeit not particularly fascinating or relevant to my blog’s theme. Perhaps I need to remember that Busy is Boring!) I think the abrupt shift in local weather from horrendously hot to near-fall-like crispness has rejuvenated me and we just had a great day today. This morning I went for a walk in the woods with the boys to scout locations for “real life Minecraft.” We also investigated the yard barn shed in our field for rehabilitation possibilities into a cool clubhouse. Then, we had a mini Pinterest Day making baked mozzarella bites and healthy chocolate chip muffins. I gave the kids applesauce with cinnamon for a snack which was met with genuine exclamations of, “this is the best day ever!” (hmm. If that’s all it takes, should break out the applesauce more often!). Also, the doctor finally called back and Zander’s arm is NOT broken (more about this in a minute). We’re finally on a roll with school and Z did 18 worksheets this morning, plus Lann is clicking with things too. On the less productive side, at 2:00 when I made said status update I was still in my pajamas (yes, even on the woods walk and clubhouse scout) and hadn’t taken a shower, let alone finished prepping for Friday’s class. I did get checked in with my online students this morning while still in bed using the miracles of iPad goodness. And, as it turned out, later in the afternoon when the kids went to visit my parents I did finish my prep for Friday’s class after all. What was just delightful about today is that we spent most of the day having fun and enjoying each others’ company—something that sometimes seems not to go hand in hand with productivity! ;-D

Okay, now for the mini-Pinterest Day verdict…

The mozzarella bites were just cut up string cheese dipped in milk and then in bread crumbs which I doctored up with Italian seasoning, pepper, onion and garlic powder. (They were originally inspired by this blog post.)

They were fun to make with kids, tasted great (I recommended my doctored bread crumbs version), and were easy.


Zander cut up the cheese and helped me dip the pieces into the crumbs. Alaina helped too.


While they flattened some during baking, they had remarkable integrity and did not turn into melted cheese puddles.

Our next Pinterest Day project was to make some delightfully healthy double chocolate muffins…


I thought this little threesome all working together so cooperatively was adorable.


What a cutie waiting for cupcakes!


Alaina enjoyed some batter.

I changed the recipe somewhat from the original and this is what I ended up with:

Double Chocolate Muffins (flourless!)


1 3/4 c. oats
3 eggs
3/4 c. unsweetened cocoa
1/2 c. applesauce
dash vanilla extract
1/2 c. plain Greek yogurt
1-1/2 TB vinegar
1-1/2 ts baking powder
1-1/2 ts baking soda
1/4 ts salt
1 c. hot water
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. milk chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2, 12-cup muffin pans. In a food processor, mix all of the ingredients except for the chocolate chips. Blend until oats are ground and mixture is smooth. Gently stir in the chocolate chips (or, if you forget like I did, sprinkle them generously over the top–they kind of sink in and make a gooey center). Spoon mixture into prepared muffin pans. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes.

My kids said these muffins were too “intense” after the first one…they’re pretty gooey/rich seeming and they actually thought they were too sweet. I think I’ll cut back the sugar next time–I think 2/3 c. would have been more than enough.

I totally loved them though! They taste like nice squishy brownies! (The kids shaped up later in the day and ate more of them, no longer complaining about being too intense.) As of right now, there are two of the 24 we made left in the house…


Finished muffin/cupcake! Look at the nice texture and tasty squishiness.

Okay, and remember the non-broken arm? Last Thursday we spent a lovely playgroup at the river…


The boys enjoy playing in this goopy, nasty moss/algae stuff.


Zander, “Moss-Man”


Having some hummus by the river side and close to Mama’s skirt as is the preferred location (if not in arms)

As we were leaving the river, the boys wanted to stop and play on the playground by the parking lot. Lann tried to swing across on the monkey bars type thing (with a slidey handle deal) and fell off and hurt his tailbone. Rather than learn from this experience, Zander instead decided to see if HE could slide across with only one arm. When he fell off, he fell with arm under him. I saw him go down and my first thought was, he broke his arm! But, after some tears and snuggles, he seemed okay—the arm had full range of motion, etc. However, that night he woke up crying three times in the night because his arm hurt too bad to sleep. We did arnica and healing salve and then tylenol. In the morning, he was cheerful and playing like usual, but I noticed he wasn’t using his arm at all and I started to get worried. He held it up close to his body at a weird angle and was often holding it with his other hand. Then, he mentioned to me that it hurt too bad to push down the soap dispenser in the bathroom. So, I became 99% sure that it was fractured somewhere (somewhere, like on the underside, that didn’t impact his range of motion). The bottom of his forearm also felt really hot to the touch, almost feverish. So, we packed up and went to the urgent care clinic sort of place in town:


Feeling kind of cool about being up on the exam table.


Alaina wants to get in on the “fun”!

After an x-ray, they put a splint and sling on it “just in case,” saying they did not see a fracture in the x-ray, but that they would send it to radiology for a million dollars (j/k) and they might be able to see a very fine one there.


Feeling all doctored up with sling (plus, favored homemade Creeper “snuggly” made by Baba)

It then took until today to get the radiology report which was “negative.” So, sling is now off, arm seems normal, I expect to receive an unpleasantly hefty bill (we have sucky, “catastrophic only” insurance–when Mark cut his leg with the chainsaw earlier this year it cost us about $2000 out-of-pocket), and yet I do still feel like I made the right call in taking him in.

And, there you have it. Facebook status turned blog post. See why I’m just not cut out for Twitter?!

Another Pinterest Day!

Yesterday we had another Pinterest Day. It was so exhausting that I’m going to not do another one for a couple of weeks! Alaina has been incredibly whiny and demanding and getting into everything all the time, often destroying things—so, it is really difficult to do fun stuff with the other kids, when someone else is complaining on my hip and sticking her hand down my shirt to twist my nipples half the time. So, our Pinterest projects of awesomeness were shaded by an overlay of intense crabbiness on my part. Boo! 😦 We expanded the definition to include “stuff we want to make” too. So, for lunch we had the best ever grilled cheese sandwiches that we just created, not from Pinterest. Mine had sautéed organic spinach and mushrooms added to the top of organic mozzarella and provolone all on (totally non-organic) french bread. Yummy, yum, yum!20120714-091343.jpg

Also, from our own heads we decided to make caramel apples using super delightful little Kraft caramel bits and organic apples from the food co-op:


Can you tell which one we made last?

After lunch the boys were excited to try these microwave chocolate chip cookies that looked super simple and easy. However, results were poor and I didn’t even both trying to make the pictures look better using Instagram. We made Zander’s first and since it still look squishy after the allotted time, we roasted the heck out of it and it was crunchy and burned on the bottom. The choco chips turned into powdery relics (that were kind of tasty). Lann deemed his a, “mega sugar bomb” and left it abandoned on the table. We didn’t put enough butter in his, I guess, because it was just loose crumbles.


We tried again with mine and it was no better.


My assessment is that this was about as tasty and texturally appealing as leaving a small bowl of egg, flour, and sugar on your dashboard on a hot day. Epic fail all around!

Pinterest Day dinner was vastly more successful: a cheesy, wild rice and spinach casserole and “crispy roast potatoes.” The potatoes called for “duck fat,” which is not one of my personal kitchen staples, so I used olive oil. I also sliced them in the food processor rather than into chunks.


Verdict: totally delicious.

The casserole was a modified version of this recipe. I added spinach and didn’t use chicken (or any of the veggies called for, other than dried, minced onion and garlic). Mark and I enjoyed it, the kids didn’t really.



Nice glass of strawberry wine to help me recover from Pinterest Day adventures with Alaina!

We’ve actually had other Pinterest Days in between the first one and this one. On the fourth of July I made several things, including homemade Payday bars that I was absurdly pleased with:


Definite win with these! Next time I’ll just stir the peanuts in though rather than layering them on the bottom on the top, where they had a tendency to pop out and roll away.

Pinterest Day!

Last Friday, my oldest son suggested that we have a “Pinterest Day–all the stuff we do today comes from Pinterest!” So, I said okay and we had an overall delightful day. It was not without some pain (details + photo to follow) and it was shockingly exhausting too. We decided to keep up the trend perhaps on each Friday. It is so easy to pin-it-and-forget-it, or to pin things that you have no intention of ever doing (I joke that I need a separate board titled, “things I like to pretend I’m going to do some day). I also got Instagram on my phone finally and so in this post you will also be treated to random, not very skillful edits of the pictures of our various projects…

The boys were super excited and took some pictures of themselves while waiting for me to get ready:

Zander chose first and we made these peanut butter cheerio treats. We used organic chocolate o’s from Big Lots, rather than the called for PB Cheerios. We also used giant, ridiculous marshmallows also from Big Lots rather than the mini mallows called for:


They were pretty delicious.

Lann chose to make these homemade “Cheez-Its.”

The results were clearly a case for which this meme was created:

I’d put the dough in the fridge between waxed paper and the paper somehow melted/fused into the dough. It was almost impossible to roll out–not to mention took FOREVER to scrape away all of the melted in waxed paper. I guess we added too much water–it went from crumbles to sticky very suddenly. I thought chilling it would solve the issue, but I probably should have just added more flour.

It was too sticky to cut before baking, so I cut them afterward. They were not crunchy, but guess what, they were delicious. We ate them all up and Mark didn’t even get to try one!


Then, we decided to make homemade shrinky dinks using hard-to-find #6 plastic. We located some minimal amounts from cracker/cookie packages and the boys had fun making their designs while Alaina tried to snag all the permanent marks and rip their lids off:


They sort of really worked…



Then, Pinterest Day devolved into PAINterest day when after getting up from naptime, Alaina accidentally stabbed me full-force in the wide open eye with a corner of one of the shrinky dinks.

It was horrible. I thought I might be permanently damaged. I thought I would probably have to go to the doctor. I thought my eyeball was possibly punctured. It burned, it watered. I couldn’t open it. It felt like it had a chunk of gravel stuck in it. By the next morning though it was down to feeling a little sandy/gritty and by that night it was totally back to normal. What a relief!

Despite my suffering, the fun had to go on and we made these utterly fabulous potatoes to have with dinner:
20120620-133720.jpgThey tasted like good fried potatoes, only they were baked. After the painstaking slicing of the potatoes into thin slices (which Mark then informed me I could have done with the food processor rather than by hand), I sprinkled them with 3TB olive oil, 1TB of italian seasoning, and 1ts of salt. I also sprinkled them with Parmesan cheese and they baked for probably over 40 minutes. Very delicious. We’re having them again tonight. Official Pinterest win!

I also need a pinboard titled, “Nutella in ALL THE THINGS!” Couldn’t resist making at least one Nutella recipe–these weird little cookies:

Only three ingredients: 1 cup Nutella, 1 c. flour, and one egg. They turned out pretty dry, but quite delicious and we quickly scarfed them all down. We made them again the next day and I used half the flour thinking I was a genius and they were super floppy, greasy, and kind of gross flat cookies then.

We continued with a carb-heavy dinner and made these supposedly delightful 30 minute dinner rolls:

20120620-133813.jpgThey were so-so. Tasted lots more like biscuits or a quick bread even though they used yeast. I make good bread already, so I really shouldn’t have experimented and should have stuck with my existing, delightful recipe that is plenty easy and turns out tastier.

On Father’s Day we continued our pinteresting lives by making homemade Reese’s eggs:


I used melted Ghiradelli chocolate chips for the outside. Some milk chocolate, some dark chocolate. In case you can’t tell from the picture, they were totally awesome. Will definitely make again. They were pretty fast too.

So, now, here is it Friday again! And…despite the eye-incident from PAINterest day, we decided to give it another go. An abbreviated version today since the boys went to see the Wizard of Oz at the theater in town with my parents and are there now (and Alaina is napping and this post is taking me WAY longer to write than it should, especially because no one really cares!!!)

But, I surprised the kids this morning with the “cookie dough popsicles I made and froze last night so they’d be ready for Pinterest Day today…


I used chocolate almond milk and mini chocolate chips and 1/3 cup of brown sugar and some vanilla. I shouldn’t have used the sugar, because they would have been sweet enough with it! I froze them in ice cube trays with toothpick sticks, so they were mini-popsicles/bite size.

Alaina was pleased with them too:

We also took a take two at the homemade Cheez-Its. They turned out different this time. I also did away with the waxed paper and the chilling and the rolling and just dropped them on the sheet with a spoon. Still delicious and still nothing like a cracker!

20120622-140745.jpgPinterest Day was a really fun experience overall and I highly recommend it, because really, what is the point of pinning all that stuff if you just go back the next day and pin more and never actually DO any of it? (or even remember you pinned it!) I think this is our new Friday fun plan! 🙂