Doctored Up Red Velvet Cake mix with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Remember when I made this Chocolate Beet Cake?

Chocolate Beet Cake via The Diva Dish

Well, let’s consider that a HEALTHY version, because today I have the HAPPY version…

A Doctored Up Red Velvet Cake Mix w/ Chocolate Buttercream Frosting!

It’s perfect for Valentines Day, or really any day you need to whip up a cake! Which, is like…once a week at least right? This is my GO-TO doctored up cake recipe, I’ve been using it for years. To see the original recipe, GO HERE.

Doctored Up Red Velvet Cake Mix via The Diva Dish IMG_2970 IMG_2972 IMG_2976 IMG_2978 IMG_2982 IMG_2983

Doctored Up Red Velvet Cake Mix w/ Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
  • (For the cake)
  • 1 box red velvet cake mix
  • 1 c. sour cream
  • 1 - 3.9 ounce box chocolate pudding
  • 1 c. vegetable oil
  • ½ c. milk
  • 1 TB. vanilla
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 c. dark chocolate chips
  • (Frosting)
  • 2 sticks salted butter, softened
  • 1 TB. vanilla extract
  • 4 c. powdered sugar
  • ½ c. cocoa powder
  • 2-4 TB. milk or heavy whipping cream
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, add all of your cake ingredients, except the chocolate chips.
  3. Using a hand held beater, mix all of the ingredients together. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  4. Spray your cake pan of choice and add your batter.
  5. Bake for 30-55 minutes. (Depending on the size of the cake pan that you use, the cooking time will vary. So adjust the cooking time accordingly.)
  6. You know the cake is done when you press the middle light with your finger and it bounces back :).
  7. Once it's done cooking, remove from the oven and let cool completely before removing from the pan.
  8. To make the frosting, add the butter to a kitchen aid mixer. Beat the butter until fluffy. Add in the powdered sugar, vanilla, cocoa powder, and 2 TB. of the milk. Beat until fluffy. Add more milk to thin frosting as needed.
  9. Once the cake has cooled, frost the cake as desired :). Store in the fridge until ready to eat, and then let it sit to bring to room temperature.


IMG_2986  IMG_2990 IMG_2994

Sorry for the cake overload, but it was just too pretty not to photograph! What is your go-to dessert recipe for special occasions. I think I’ve always been a cake/cupcake person because I can whip frosting up in my sleep! I can also eat it without hesitation.


{Healthy} Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn

(To see the ‘Happy’ version of this recipe, click HERE)

This was no easy task my friends. I had many attempts at trying to make a popcorn coated in vibrant purple chocolate healthier, and many failed.

There were many popcorn ideas that could have worked, and that I could have very well eaten…But when I put it to the test against my family, a lot of times they just said…No. Actually more like no way, gross, disgusting, is that coconut oil??

(Healthier) Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

I still wanted it to be coated in white chocolate, because after all, that’s what the Happy version of the recipe was. (Actually, I don’t think that candy coating is real chocolate…)But I knew that I had to makeover that purple color, use REAL ingredients, and still leave it tasting delicious…if not better!

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

I could have easily added purple food coloring to the white chocolate, but I wanted to take it one step further and NATURALLY color the popcorn. The secret to the popcorn color was freeze dried blueberries. I blended them up into a fine powder and mixed it with the chocolate, which naturally tinted it!

Healthy Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

The best part was that my kids and husband ate it without any complaints!

Don’t worry, they had a few things to say about the dinner I made later that night…Glad they are back to their normal selves…

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn
Serves: 9 cups
  • 9 cups popped popcorn
  • 1 c. good quality white chocolate
  • ¼ c. freeze dried blueberries
  • 1 tsp. coconut oil
  • eye sprinkles
  • bug sprinkles
  1. Add your popcorn in a large bowl.
  2. Melt the white chocolate in the microwave, 30 second increments.
  3. While the white chocolate is melting, add the blueberries to a blender.
  4. Blend until fine crumbs,
  5. Add the blueberry dust to the white chocolate and mix together. Add the coconut oil to the chocolate and melt in the microwave for an additional 10 seconds.
  6. Pour the chocolate over the popcorn, and fold until its completely coated.
  7. Pour popcorn on prepared baking sheet. Add sprinkles, pressing them into the top of the popcorn so they stick to the chocolate.
  8. Put in the fridge for about 10 minutes to set.
  9. Store in sealed bags.


Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

(Someone is totally ready for pumpkin and Halloween season, don’t you think?)

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

SO! What do you guys think, how did I do?!

Are there any recipes you would like to see a Happy version and Healthy version of! Let me know in the comments!

If you are looking for freeze dried blueberries, there is a link below: (affiliate link)

{Happy} Purple Monster Popcorn

It’s no secret that I LOVE to indulge when it comes to eating, especially dessert. I’ve always been a dessert maker by heart, but I do my best to strive and eat healthy majority of the time.

Over the years as I’ve been a ‘Healthy Lifestyle’ blogger, I’ve been finding that I don’t always want to focus solely on healthy food. My goal has always been to help others build a happy and healthy life, in all aspects. A part of that is not always eating the healthiest food. I know, I know…But let me explain.

Purple Monster Popcorn via The Diva Dish

Food is definitely a love language, and it brings people together. We get together to go out, vacation, spend holidays, and spend time with the ones we love eating delicious food that we will talk about forever. We all know that one place that made the best “such and such”, and we dream of going back there again.

To me, that’s ‘Happy’.

That doesn’t mean that healthy food doesn’t make me happy, because it does. But when you allow yourself to indulge every once in a while, I truly believe that It brings forth a different kind of Happiness!

Which is why this next series that all about Happy Food vs. Healthy Food!!

Purple Monster Popcorn via The Diva Dish

Since I love to make ‘Happy Food’ every so often, I knew I wanted to share this with my readers. I decided to introduce a series where I will make a recipe ‘Happy’ and then a few days later a ‘Healthy’ version of the ‘Happy’ recipe will be posted!

Make sense?

So today is a ‘Happy’ chocolate covered popcorn, and in a few days, I’ll have a healthier/cleaner version of this same recipe, which will be the ‘Healthy’ recipe!

I’m really so excited and already have a lists of recipes that are going to get Happy and Healthy makeovers!

So here is our first Happy recipe:

Purple Monster Popcorn, Happy Edition via The Diva Dish

{Happy} Purple Monster Popcorn
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 9 cups
  • 9 cups popped popcorn*
  • 1 c. purple candy chocolates, I used Wilton
  • 2-3 TB. mini candy eyes, sprinkles
  • 2-3 TB. halloween sprinkles
  • *Use a popcorn that is lightly salted and little to no butter. If it has too much butter, the candy coating won't stick.
  1. In a large bowl, add your popcorn.
  2. Prepare a large baking sheet with parchment or wax paper.
  3. Melt you chocolate in the microwave, 30 seconds at a time, until melted.
  4. Pour chocolate over the popcorn and gently fold using a spatula until chocolate has evenly coated the popcorn.
  5. Pour the popcorn on the baking sheet, and then sprinkle the sprinkles on top. You can press them in a little so they stick to the chocolate.
  6. Allow the chocolate to harden, about 30 minutes.
  7. Break it apart and store or place in decorated bags or cups!
  8. Enjoy!

Links to the products I used:

Purple Monster Popcorn via The Diva Dish

I’m so excited to share the Healthy Version of this recipe for you! See you in a few days!



Links to the products I used:

(Affiliate Links)


Chocolate Pumpkin Milkshake

I know that healthy and milkshake don’t normally go in the same sentence…

But for the sake that legging season is upon us, I have to be a lot more careful what goes into my belly. Leggings don’t necessarily hide EVERYTHING. (In a perfect world right?) That’s what oversized sweaters and jackets are for though!!

Healthy Chocolate Pumpkin Milkshake

So, in a sense, this isn’t really a milkshake. But it’s creamy and somewhat thick, sweet and full of flavor! So in my mind, it’s a milkshake. (Minus the fat and calories!) Also, there is real pumpkin puree in it, so when you serve it to your kids they are drinking vegetables…

I mean, could you be a better mom?!

Healthy Chocolate Pumpkin Milkshakes via The Diva Dish

Chocolate Pumpkin Milk
  • (For the Whipped Cream)
  • 1 can full fat coconut, refrigerated for at least 24 hours
  • 1 TB. pure maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • (For the Milkshake)
  • 1 cup non dairy milk
  • 1½ frozen banana
  • 6 frozen cubes of pumpkin puree(Just add puree to ice cubes and freeze)
  • 1 tsp. molasses
  • 2 TB. cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. pure maple syrup
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • handful of ice
  1. Prepare your whipped cream first by scooping out JUST the solid white flesh from the can and placing it in a bowl. Using hand beaters, whip the cream until creamy.
  2. Next add the maple syrup, spice, and vanilla extract.
  3. Whip until fluffy and place covered in the fridge until you're ready to use.
  4. For the milkshake, add all of your ingredients into the blender until blended. Top with whipped cream and drink immediately!



Just look at those smiles! They would never know I didn’t make that drink with a gallon of ice cream ;)!

Almond Flour Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

I can’t tell you how much these cookies saved my sanity. I’m talking a serious Hallelujah moment. I was this close to throwing it all away and digging right into my jar of ‘regular chocolate chip cookies’ after the first day my oldest went back to school.

Almond Flour Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies via The Diva Dish

I never realized how much my oldest played a major part in the entertaining of my two youngest. They followed her everywhere, played what she played, and did what she did. The minute we got home from dropping her off, the two youngest both looked at me like, “Now what?”

The whole day was spent playing, reading, peek-a-boo-ing, songs, games, and then I told myself…”I’m out of ideas!” It was only lunch time and I still had 3 hours to go…

So we started round 2 of play dough and “Let it Go” on replay and I busted these cookies out in desperation. Usually when I do things like that, the recipe NEVER turns out. But I think the sanity Gods were on my side, because 5 cookies later I decided these were something that definitely needed to be shared…


Almond Flour Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies via The Diva DishAlmond Flour Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies via The Diva Dish

Almond Flour Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • 2½ cups almond meal/flour
  • 2 TB. coconut flour
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ c. almond butter**
  • 1 TB. vanilla
  • ½ c. pure maple syrup
  • ¼ c. melted coconut oil
  • ¾ c. chocolate chips
  • ½ c. unsweetened shredded coconut
  • **I used stir natural almond butter, which contains more oil than a no stir almond butter. If your almond butter isn't a natural kind, or has a less oily base, just add 1-2 tsp. additional oil.**
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together flours, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
  2. In a larger bowl, whisk together almond butter and vanilla. Next whisk in maple syrup. Slowly whisk in coconut oil until incorporated. Add the dry to the wet, and using beaters, beat together on slow the ingredients.
  3. Fold in the chocolate chips and coconut.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  5. Using a small ice cream scoop, scoop batter onto cookie sheet. Using your fingers, flatten the tops of the cookies slightly.
  6. Bake 8-9 minutes, let cook and eat!
  7. Cookies will soften a little once stored in a container.


Almond Flour Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies via The Diva Dish

And by shared I mean alone in your room sharing with you, yourself, and…you.

These cookies are soft and chewy on the inside, with a slight crunch on the outside! I couldn’t believe how perfect they turned out, especially being made without regular flour and liquid sweetener!

Almond Flour Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies via The Diva Dish

Save the ‘regular’ chocolate cookies for when things start looking really bad…

Like when your daughter asks to play “Let It Go’ for the 645 time. That’s when you know it’s bad.


Healthy Cotton Candy Milkshake

*Who doesn’t love that melt in your mouth super sweet spun sugar?! Imagine that flavor in a  cold milkshake form, and wait for it…It’s also healthy too! Read below for the recipe!* 


So on Friday June 17th, I quite sugar.

No chocolate, candy, bites of cookies, cupcakes, licks of frosting. It wasn’t easy, but I did it…

cotton candy milkshake from the diva dish

For 6 hours.

Listen. I love the idea of quitting sugar. Never touching a cupcake again and poo poo-ing at the sight of an ice cream cone sounds amazing to me. I don’t want to love it/lust it/dream of it…But I love sweets, baking, tasting, licking…did I paint the right picture?

Now, being that it’s summer and I live on the surface of the sun, I am constantly taking my kids swimming which means I’m constantly in a bathing suit. I eat healthy and I workout, but I know that I could always kick it up a notch and be like I used to be when I didn’t have kids. When I shopped religiously at whole foods instead of buying diapers. When I sat down and ate lunch quietly, instead of eating my kids leftovers. When I didn’t wear size ‘training bra’ because of nursing…#goodol’days

cotton candy milkshake from the diva dish

So I told myself I was quitting sugar on Friday. I told everyone I knew, because everyone cares. I think I told my husband 3 times.

But something happened Friday, earlier than expected. I had a migraine and was just so hungry, moody, grumpy, and well…please tell me you understand?

I just had to give in and have a few pieces of dark chocolate. For some reason it brought me comfort, and eased the burden of that horrible Friday afternoon when the unexpected happened….

cotton candy milkshake from the diva dish

Honestly, I was disappointed in myself. How could I not go a day without chocolate?!

But then I remembered that I’ve never been one to follow ‘healthy lifestyles’ where we completely limit our selves from food, especially our favorite food. Should we moderate and eat sparingly, definitely. But to tell myself I would never have sugar again…That’s like, criminal.


healthy cotton candy milkshake from the diva dish

So even though I only went 6 hours without sugar, I feel totally better and like a whole new person!!! (Joking.Joking.)

But I definitely reminded myself not to be so hard, and that sometimes jumping all in and saying I’ll NEVER do that again is probably not the right way to improve at something…Especially when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle :).

And for those days when you want to limit the sweets, but still need to conquer those tastebuds….

cotton candy milkshake from the diva dish

Healthy Cotton Candy Milkshake
During the summer, these delicious cotton candy grapes pop up in grocery stores! They mimic almost exactly the taste of that sugar treat!
  • ½ c. milk of choice
  • 2½ c. cotton candy grapes, frozen optional
  • 1 c. ice
  1. Blend all ingredients together in a blender until creamy! Serves 2-3 people, enjoy!


Have you guys seen the cotton candy grapes at grocery stores during summer time?! I can’t believe how much they taste like the actual treat! I bought the store out because I didn’t want to share in it’s deliciousness, so hurry and check your local stores before I come and steal those too ;)!

cotton candy milkshake from the diva dish

I asked the girls if they could share a milkshake so I could put two straws in one and take a picture, but  they had the same reaction as if I asked chop off their dolls heads so….

Two straws and two cups it is!!



The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream!

*These are hands down the yummiest, fluffiest, and most fresh tasting strawberry cupcakes ever!* 

Valentines Day is kind of a big deal at our household, and to top that off my little baby has a birthday a few days before! We’ve got pink thrown up all over the house, heart pictures and talks of boyfriends, valentine notes attached to sugar…

And cupcakes. The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes!

Now, before we get to the recipe, let’s talk about my wonderful experience with Valentines during…High School.

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva DishThe BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

When I was in High School, our school did this thing where we could purchase a Valentine Gram for a dollar, and then during one of the periods a bubbly student from student council would deliver you a personalized card to your class. I think there was candy attached or a balloon. Something obnoxious, in which I wanted so bad.

It was the most painful thing every year.


The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

Each Valentines Day the same girls/guys would receive Valentines Grams as they laughed it off as kind of a, “who, me?!” mentality.  Meanwhile I would sit there counting down the minutes until lunch time so I could purchase a BRC (bean, rice, cheese) burrito. Priorities right?

One year I received a Valentines Gram. I don’t exactly remember it, but I’m pretty sure everyone in class looked at me like, “Do you even go here?”

And then one kid shouted, “Yes! She’s the burrito girl!”

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva DishThe BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

I remember sitting there with butterflies in my stomach thinking that maybe, just maybe it could be from so and so. Or maybe that other so and so…He was totally hot.

As I ripped in half that little heart sticker that held it together I began to feel flush in the face. Kind of like the same feeling I get just before that burrito hits my mouth. I had visions of my whole life changing and that maybe my life would turn out to be a Mary-Kate and Ashley Movie after all!

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

This is what the Candy Gram said,

” Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, Sugar is Sweet and So Are You! Happy Valentines Day! Love….”

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva DishThe BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish


Aka, my best friend. #soabouthoseburritos

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
Serves: 13
  • For The Cupcakes
  • 1½ c. flour, unbleached white
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ c. buttermilk, or ½ c. milk + 1 tsp. vinegar mixed together
  • ¼ c. strawberry puree*
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 c. pure cane sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 TB. vanilla extract or 2 tsp. vanilla bean paste
  • Opt: 3-4 drops red food coloring
  • For The Frosting
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened, room temperature.
  • 4 c. powdered sugar
  • 4 TB. strawberry puree
  • 1 TB. Vanilla extract, or 2 tsp. vanilla bean paste
  • (Opt: 2-3 drops red food coloring)
  • dash of salt
  1. (For the Cake)
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  3. In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a mixer bowl add butter and sugar. mix together until fluffy on low speed for 30 seconds. Next add in eggs one at a time, followed by vanilla.
  5. Add your strawberry puree to your buttermilk.
  6. Add ⅓ of the flour mixture to the batter, followed by ⅓ of the buttermilk mixture. Continue doing this until the flour and buttermilk are gone. Do not over mix the batter.
  7. Add in the food coloring if you prefer. You can mix it in, but not fully to give it a swirled look.
  8. Add batter to prepared muffin tins, filling ⅔ of the way full. It will make about 12-14 cupcakes.
  9. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until done.
  10. (For the Frosting)
  11. While the cupcakes are cooling, make the frosting.
  12. Beat the butter until fluffy. Add in the rest of the ingredients and beat until fluffy.
  13. (opt:) You can tint half of the frosting mixture and pipe both frostings together in one piping bag. Just add one color to one side, and the other color to the other. Then pipe the frosting onto the cupcake! Top with sprinkles and enjoy!


The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

The BEST Strawberry Cupcakes w/ Strawberry Buttercream! Fresh and from scratch! via The Diva Dish

Moral of the story…Burritos before Bros.

Happy Birthday to my little baby! I can’t believe you are one!!

Healthy Caramel Popcorn

Due to the fact that Monday night’s around our house are basically a national holiday, being Bachelor night and all…How about the perfect trash TV treat to go with it, eh? Eh?

Healthy Caramel Popcorn via The Diva Dish

I know it’s ridiculous to how much I look forward to a scripted once in a lifetime romantic television, and I probably should end my night reading a book that will makes my brains all smarts n’ stuff…But, like have you ever seen the Bachelor?! How could you not love it?! Everyone is emotional, drunk, bat shiz crazy, and after a day of messy kitchen’s and back talking toddlers, it’s just what I need.

Is that sad?

No, no It’s not. Because today my 5 year old told me I was ruining her life because her pony tail was crooked.


Healthy Caramel Corn via The Diva Dish

The best way to watch the Bachelor in my opinion is with a group of girls. Everyone’s dressed in yoga pants bringing forth delicious goodies, and we all pile together on a couch to judge other crazy women. I’ve tried watching it at home with my husband, but he just mocks me. Especially during the scenes where the girls are in bathing suits…OH he just can’t leave the room because he HAS to tell me how ridiculous this show is!

He doesn’t get it.

It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, and people are working on themselves and really finding out who they are! Pure gold.

And trust me, I’m pretty sure we would all find out who we really are as we traveled the world with our Boyfriend and his 16 other girlfriends. LIKE…Oh crap. I’m awesome.

Healthy Caramel Corn via The Diva Dish

Healthy Caramel Popcorn
  • ½ c. popcorn kernals
  • 2 TB. coconut oil
  • ⅓ c. coconut sugar
  • salt
  1. Get a large baking sheet out and set aside. This will be used to pour the popcorn on once done.
  2. Add coconut oil, coconut sugar, and popcorn kernels to a stove top popper. Turn the heat on medium/low and stir the popcorn mixture together continuously. (This allows the coconut sugar not to burn.)
  3. As the popcorn begins to pop, continue to stir the mixture slowly until the popcorn begins to decrease to a slow pop.(If you open the lid, the popcorn will have made it's way to the top.)
  4. Pour the popcorn on the baking sheet, and spread it out. Let it cool, then enjoy!
  5. Store in an airtight container for 3-4 days.

This popcorn was amazing! The second It was ready to eat, I couldn’t stop. I love the fact that it’s made with a natural sugar, and there is a little bit of crunch and caramelization on there. I had this on the counter in a jar while family was in town and people could not get enough of it!

Now…Before we get to this weeks dinner menu and workout schedule, I thought I would leave with this…


Basically how we are when it’s time to eat, right?

weekly dinner

Monday: French Bread Pizza, using whole wheat french bread, veggies + fruit

Tuesday: Cilantro Lime Chicken Burgers w/ Roasted Corn, and fruit

Wednesday: Slow Cooker Chickpea Curry w/ Brown Rice or Quinoa, Naan Bread (Recipe to come!)

(Use THIS recipe as a substitute!)

Thursday: Whole Wheat Oatmeal Pancakes, and scrambled eggs +spinach

Friday: Turkey Meatballs (sans tomato sauce), Mashed Potatoes, Roasted Carrots

Saturday: Night off!


Monday: Run (I started a couch to 10k app!), 10 minute stretch

Tuesday: Walking kids to school, HIITilates Booty Workout, via Blogilates. Quick Leg & Butt Sculptor, via Blogilates, stretch

Wednesday: Run (Couch to 10k app.) 10 minute stretch

Thursday: Walking kids to school. Instense Ab Burn, Via Blogilates. Bikini Arms, via Tone It Up!

Friday: Bikini Yoga Flow, via Tone It Up

Saturday: Run, (Couch to 10k app), 10 minute stretch

Sunday: Rest


Enjoy your week! May it be the most romantic and exciting week of your life!!









Mom’s Gingerbread Cookies

*This is not an exaggeration. Hands down, these are the best Gingerbread cookies I’ve ever had. And many friends and family agree!*

Not many grandmas have Facebook pages created on behalf of things they’ve said…But mine does.

The BEST Gingerbread Cookies via The Diva Dish

I’m pretty sure I’ve talked about her before on the blog, and her name is Grandma B. Every so often she will come out to visit my little family and spend a few days. It’s always an adventure. There are always memories made. And you never forget when Grandma B. visits. Ever.

From the second you open the door you hear squeals of delight from three tiny girls, and a “Ooooooohhhh hellOOO!”, from Grandma B. herself. Her slight Argentine accent peaks through as she talks about the weather in Las Vegas and how beautiful it really is. She then proceeds to walk around the house stating, “Ok, let’s see what’s new around here.”, as she examines each piece of furniture/decor debating whether that was here last time she stayed with us.

The BEST Gingerbread Cookies via The Diva Dish

She brings with her chamomile tea, english muffins, and orange marmalade for her to have for breakfast each morning, alongside the LA Times. She talks about uncomfortable positions in politics and asks if I need eye makeup for Christmas since she hasn’t seen me wear any in the 2 days she’s been here.

My girls love to get her attention by making the loudest noise possible, which of course she loves. She always asks the right questions, like about my breasts and time of the month schedule. Quickly followed by remarking in front of the kids how hard it must be for me to hide the elf on the shelf every morning. Don’t worry, they didn’t catch on. They also missed when she asked them if they saw the real Santa at our church Christmas party or a pretend one…

The BEST Gingerbread Cookies via The Diva Dish

And each times she visits, we laugh, we play, and we eat lots of food. (She also folds my laundry!!) It might be uncomfortable at times, and I probably will never use the word breasts again, but isn’t that what the holidays are all about?! Awkward, fun, memorable, uncomfortable, family togetherness.

And dessert.


Because if there is one thing I did inherit from my grandmother it’s that there must always be something to eat for dessert after breakfast lunch dinner. No matter what.

And what better way to honor that than with my mom’s gingerbread cookies! After all, it’s all about family.

And breasts.


Mom's Gingerbread Cookies
  • (Royal Icing)
  • 6 cups all purpose flour, sifted
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 c. dark brown sugar, packed
  • 4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1½ tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 tsp. finely ground black pepper
  • 1½ tsp. salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 c. unsulfured molasses
  • (Royal Icing)
  • ¼ c. merengue powder
  • 4 c. powdered sugar
  • ½ c. cold water
  1. In a bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, and baking powder.
  2. In a mixer, beat together the butter and brown sugar until fluffy. Mix in the spices and salt, then the eggs, followed by the molasses.
  3. Add flour mixture slowly.
  4. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for at least an hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Roll out a portion of the dough, cut into desired shapes, and place on baking sheet. (Use parchment paper!)
  6. Chill the shapes for 20 minutes.
  7. Bake for 8 minutes, or until golden. Do no overtake!
  8. Cool on a wire rack, and frost when completely cool.
  9. (Royal Icing)
  10. Beat all ingredients together. Dye your color of choice.

Obviously my girls inherited my impeccable cookie decorating skills, not to toot my own horn or anything…

The BEST Gingerbread Cookies via The Diva Dish

The Best Gingerbread Cookies via The Diva Dish

I promise you, despite the heavy sprinkle gear and hot pink frosting, these cookies are irresistible to anyone! Even when Grandma B. says, “well I’ll be the judge of that!”

The Best Gingerbread Cookies via The Diva Dish

I hope your holidays are as awkward as mine! 😉

Spiced Chocolate Banana Muffins

I’m trying my hardest to type this blog post all about the most delicious Chocolate Spiced Banana Muffins, but my daughter has Peppa Pig on in the background, and now I’ve somehow developed a British accent with pig snorts shoved in-between. You want to know what’s worse than regular writers’ block? British accent pig snorts writers’ block…


So about these muffins…

Ever since I started decorating for Christmas in October last week, I’ve been fully embracing the holiday baking season. I also started going back to the gym to counteract all of the calories I’ve been eating baking. In fear that my maternity pants may have to make their way back out of the garage, I’ve decided to start distributing baked goods out early this year to our friends.

They win and I don’t look pregnant.


Although, I’ve always wanted to be the friend who dropped off kale salads to the neighbors during the Christmas season because that’s what everybody really wants! Right? Yup.


The second these came out of the oven, my girls each had two and then didn’t eat their dinner. I’d say that means this recipes is a winner and I’m a top notch parent! Snort!



5.0 from 1 reviews
Chocolate Spiced Banana Muffins
Serves: 24
  • 2¼ c. white whole wheat flour
  • ¼ c. cocoa powder
  • 1½ tsp. baking soda
  • dash of salt
  • 1½ tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. ground cloves
  • ½ tsp. ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger
  • ¾ c. softened butter, can sub room temp coconut oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1½ c. coconut sugar
  • 1 TB. vanilla
  • 5 mashed bananas
  • 1½ c. dark chocolate chopped, or dark chocolate chips
  1. In a bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients including flour, baking soda, and spices.
  2. In a separate bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until combined and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
  3. Next add in the eggs, slowly beating one after the other. Then the vanilla.
  4. Next add in the bananas and combine.
  5. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients, and then fold in the chocolate chips.
  6. Try not to over beat.
  7. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners and scoop batter into the muffin tin using a medium ice cream scoop to create even baking.
  8. Bake for 18-22 minutes, depending on oven.
  9. Makes 24 muffins.
  10. Dust with powdered sugar if desired.




Sidenote: These are probably a ‘healthier’ treat than other Christmas treats, so it’s basically like dropping a kale salad.

What would you guys do without me?