Halloween Popcorn | Adventures in Pinterest

Happy one year anniversary to Adventures in Pinterest!

This project all started when Anna took on 30 Days of Pinterest last year and convinced me, Megan and Jessica to contribute. We all liked it so much we decided to continue tackling all the pretty things pinned on Pinterest. Some have been winners, some have not. Anyone remember the S’Mores Brownies?

With Halloween on the horizon, I’ve been brainstorming super cheap and easy alternatives to the Boo Bucket. Now, I don’t typically spend a lot of money on filling my boo buckets. My favorite filler is boxed cake mix, a can of frosting and some Halloween sprinkles but some people just want a treat they can enjoy right that very minute.

Hello, Halloween Popcorn.

I've been brainstorming super cheap and easy alternatives to the Boo Bucket and have come up with this yummy Halloween Popcorn recipe.

These are thousands of Halloween Popcorn recipes on Pinterest. I went to the store to get what I needed to make this version but as I stood in the candy aisle realized that I could make any variation of the recipe that I wanted to.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Popcorn

1 bag of microwave popcorn

1/2 bag Wilton Vanilla flavored Candy Melts

1 cup Peanut Butter M&Ms

2 cups pretzels

Halloween Sprinkles

This recipe is a total no brainer. Pop your popcorn, melt your candies, add your pretzels, candy and sprinkles. Let cool and eat.

I do have a couple of tips from my mistakes.

1. Skip the buttered popcorn. Your popcorn will be greasy and yellow, so just skip it and get the “natural” variety from Orville Redenbacher.

2. Sift your popcorn from the seeds.

I've been brainstorming super cheap and easy alternatives to the Boo Bucket and have come up with this yummy Halloween Popcorn recipe.

3. Mix your popcorn and melted candy melts in a large Ziploc bag – Shake & Bake style – and then spread it out on a cookie sheet to add the other ingredients.

I've been brainstorming super cheap and easy alternatives to the Boo Bucket and have come up with this yummy Halloween Popcorn recipe.

I've been brainstorming super cheap and easy alternatives to the Boo Bucket and have come up with this yummy Halloween Popcorn recipe.

Once it cools, bag it up into a cellophane bag and tie it with a bow. Each Christmas, my neighbor treats us to homemade candies and it’s a highlight of the season. I think a bag of this Halloween Popcorn will be gladly received by anyone.

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French Vanilla Date Smoothie

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Nestle, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #BreakfastEssentials http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV

I grew up drinking Carnation Breakfast Essentials. Not only are they tasty but super easy to make and take in the morning or as a great afternoon pick me up. The classic Carnation Breakfast Essentials yellow box has been a pantry staple for as long as I can remember. You can’t beat the Rich Chocolate Milk flavor made straight up with ice cold milk. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned to be more creative with the powder drink mix. My go to smoothie recipe is made with one packet of Rich Chocolate Milk, 1 cup almond milk, a scoop of peanut butter and a frozen banana. With 21 vitamins and minerals, 13 grams of protein and as much calcium as a 6 ounce cup of yogurt, I love this smoothie after my morning workout!

Carnations Breakfast Essentials Date Smoothie

Two years ago, my little one and I started a tradition on Monday afternoons called Ice Cream Monday. We have probably visited every ice cream and frozen yogurt shop in and around Orange County in those two years. One of our favorite ocean front ice cream shops serves a killer date shake. Yes, dates! It’s so totally delicious and was the inspiration for this Carnation Breakfast Essentials Date Smoothie!

Carnation Breakfast Essentials Date Smoothie
Recipe type: Smoothie
  • 1 packet Carnation Breakfast Essentials Classic French Vanilla
  • 3 Fancy Medjool Dates, pitted and pre soaked
  • 1 sliced banana, frozen
  • 1 1/2 cup almond milk
  • Dash of cinnamon
  1. Remove the pit from dates (slice off one end of each date and squeeze pit out).
  2. Halve each date.
  3. Put dates in a shallow container and cover with 1/2 almond milk. Refrigerate for at least 1/2 hour.
  4. Empty one packet of Carnation Breakfast Essentials Classic French Vanilla and 1 cup almond milk into blender and mix.
  5. Add dates and blend well.
  6. Add frozen banana slices and cinnamon, blend again.

Carnation Date Smoothie

Don’t be afraid of using dates in your smoothies! They are naturally sweet, great for aiding in digestion and full of iron for increased energy. By rehydrating the dates in almond milk before making your smoothie, the dates will blend to a smooth consistency. If you like your smoothie with more texture, you can skip this step.

Carnation Vanilla Date Smoothie

How to make a date smoothie

The Carnation Breakfast Essentials Date Smoothie is great for breakfast or an afternoon pick me up before sports or homework. You can use any of the great flavors such as Rich Milk Chocolate, Classic French Vanilla, Classic Chocolate Malt, Dark Chocolate, Strawberry Sensation as the base to your smoothie recipes. You can find a ton of other great Carnation Breakfast Essentials smoothie recipes here or their Facebook page!

Do you shop at Kroger (or Ralph’s in Southern California)? Don’t miss out on getting your own box of Carnation Breakfast Essentials! Look for offers from Carnation Breakfast Essentials here.

Ok, who’s ready for a Date Smoothie?

Lemon Baked Chicken

This Lemon Baked Chicken was incredible and was featured on my week three meal plan! Another flavorful and low-cal recipe courtesy of JillianMichaels.com. Follow the easy instructions below and be sure to see my notes on how to change it up!


1/2 cup(s) lemon juice
2 tablespoon oil, olive, extra-virgin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper, black ground
1 pounds chicken, breast, boneless, skinless

In a small dish, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Rinse chicken breasts and pat dry. Place chicken breasts in a resealable plastic bag with the lemon sauce. Let marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Place chicken in an aluminum pan and bake for about 30 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink inside.

Note: I served this Lemon Baked Chicken with brown rice and roasted brussels sprouts which I loved but wasn’t a huge hit with the others.  Apparently, brussels sprouts are an acquired taste.  I thought this flavorful chicken would be great chopped up on top of green salad with feta cheese, cucumbers, tomato, kalamata olives, and red onion.  You could definitely use any Greek dressing but I thought the lemon chicken alone was plenty of flavor.

Serves 4. Calories per serving: 193

This is a non-sponsored post. I am not an affiliate for JillianMichaels.com though I am a member of the website.

Friday Take Over // Betsy’s Serving Up Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

It’s Friday and that means I’m skipping around town instead of sitting behind the computer! This week’s Friday Take Over is a recipe from the sun-worshipping-creative-spirit Betsy from BetsyLife.  I am so super excited about it too because I love me some sweet potatoes.  Like, way more than a boring old Russet potato – even with sour cream and chives.  Betsy’s got a spicy one for y’all.  P.S. Betsy is an incredible food stylist and photographer.  After seeing her photos, I bet my bottom dollar you’re going to pick up some sweet potatoes for the weekend.  I know I am!  Enjoy!


Ever since Seasonal Potluck featured sweet potatoes in November last year, I’ve become hooked! My mom never fed us sweet potatoes as kids, so they were never really on my radar. Once I was forced to use them, I ended up falling in love….with a caveat.

I like my sweet potatoes spicy. I’m not into the brown sugar and marshmallows, I’m more about chili pepper+natural sweetness combo. If you’ve never eaten them like this, you should try it.

Once again The Hubs is out of town so I’m eating for one. I took one of the large sweet potatoes I got at the farmers market last week and baked it at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes until it got soft (make sure you poke some holes with a fork before baking!) Then I scoured my fridge for what I could stuff it with. Spicy black bean burger? Done! The result was truly fantastical, not to mention the perfect meal for one (and healthy!)

how to stuff a sweet potato

Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

1 large sweet potato

1 spicy black bean burger

2 scallions, thinly sliced

1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder

1/2 tsp cumin

1 T pepper jack cheese, shredded

1/2 avocado, diced

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Poke holes all over the sweet potato with a fork. Bake directly on the oven rack for about 45 minutes or until soft. Meanwhile, microwave the black bean burger for 1 minute on each side. Once the patty is heated through, coarsely chop. Cut a slit in the potato and carefully scoop out the flesh, reserving the skin. In a small bowl mash sweet potato, black bean burger, scallions, chili powder, and cumin until well combined.

sweet potato recipes

Scoop the mixture back into the potato skin and top with shredded cheese. Place the potato on a baking sheet coated in foil. Put the potato back in the oven for 5 minutes, or until cheese melts. Top with diced avocado and serve.

sweet potato avocado

Who else loves sweet potatoes? Head over to Seasonal Potluck’s sweet potato party to see some great recipes, and link yours up. Also, be sure to check out this year’s featured ingredient, butternut squash! (Yet another sweet item that is great when combined with spicy flavors!)


san diego food blogger betsylife

I’m in awe with how beautiful this stuffed sweet potato looks.  I can only imagine what it tastes like!  

But the recipes don’t stop there.  You have to see what else Betsy’s put together at her blog BetsyLife.  Three words for you Samoa Bundt Cake.  What? Yes, you heard me right!  How about something savory? You must make this Chicken Tamale Casserole.  It’s on my menu next week, especially for one of the nights when we have soccer or gymnastics because I’m pretty sure it can be made ahead of time.

For a complete 180 – Betsy isn’t just all about recipes and food styling – read Puppies vs. Babies and one of my favorite gratitude journals on the internet, The Great List.   

Betsy can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram

Like what you saw?  Please consider pinning it to one of your Pinterest boards!