Easy Fritos Bean Dip Appetizer for all occasions

I love this Easy Fritos Bean dip recipe, because it always goes. It works great when you need a quick and easy recipe for a party appetizer. People love it and are always asking me for the recipe. It can take on any shape and can be decorated for different for any holiday and all occations.

Bean Dip Recipe


1 8-ounce package of cream cheese, softened

1 9 ounce can Fritos Bean Dip

4 ounces of shredded cheddar cheese

3-4 green onions, sliced

1-2 Roma tomatoes, diced

10-12 black olives, sliced


Blend the Fritos bean dip and softened cream cheese until smooth and uniform. Hint: If you can’t find Fritos Bean dip, try this Copycat Recipe.

Spread the mixture in a dish or on a plate. This is where you can get creative with the dip. Because the dip can take on any shape, you can put it in a football shaped dish for a Super Bowl game day party, or a Christmas Tree shaped dish for a Christmas party. Get creative!

Top with the shredded cheese.

Layer with tomatoes, onions and olives.

Easy Bean Dip
Easy Bean Dip

This is another opportunity to get creative. For example, you could arrange the toppings like Christmas ornaments on a tree shaped platter. You can also pipe on sour cream using a frosting bag to create some fun designs. See my Easy Bean Dip Recipe Halloween designs below.

Halloween Themed Appetizer

Spider Web Halloween themed Bean Dip Appetizer.

To make your Easy Bean Dip more festive for a Halloween party you could decorate it like a spider web. For the spider web I used a piping bag with a #4 tip to pipe on full fat sour cream. I topped with a couple of spider rings which I removed before serving. I still wanted the other toppings so I added them to the edge of the design. If you are really crafty you could make spiders out of olives.

Grave Yard Halloween Themed Bean Dip Appetizer

For more Halloween appetizer fun you could also make your Easy Bean dip into a grave yard. For the grave yard, I piped full fat sour cream on Wheat Thins using a piping bag and a #2 tip. Then I arranged the crackers like grave stones. I added a bat ring and a couple of skull rings too, but I removed them before serving.

If you are planning a Halloween party, check out my post on Halloween Costumes.

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Entertaining at home

From Tiger King to Toilet Paper, Fun and Unique 2020 Halloween Costumes

Halloween 2020 may not be like Halloween in the past. Because of the current pandemic, the CDC is not recommending traditional Trick or Treating and most of the other popular Halloween events will likely be cancelled or go virtual. This is why I’m planning to have a small gathering at my home. We’ll play some good social distancing games, enjoy some treats and probably enjoy a campfire. Of course we will need some Halloween costumes! Wouldn’t it be fun to have a 2020 theme for Halloween costumes this year? Here are some fun and unique ideas for Halloween costumes for 2020, everything form Tiger king to Toilet paper.

2020 Halloween Costumes for Couples

Dress up in his and her 1920’s Costumes

If you already bought these costumes for a 2020 New Year’s party, then Halloween 2020 would be a great time to use these costumes again. Go as a Flapper and a Gangster from the 1920’s.

Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx 2020 Halloween Costumes

Because we have all been watching these two doctors on TV all year, they would make a unique costume idea for Halloween 2020. I searched for costumes for them but could not find any. I did, however, find some great accessories you could use to pull together a great Dr. Fauci or Dr. Birx costume for Halloween 2020.

For Dr. Birx you could wear a lab coat with her name tag or almost any business attire with a scarf. You have to include a Dr. Birx scraf. She has reddish blond hair that is almost always worn in a bun. I found a good wig that could work for her. Top it off with a faux syringe you could label as a COVID-19 Vaccine.

For Dr. Fauci you could choose a Washington Nationals jersey and hat, or you could also wear a nice suit or lab coat with his name tag. You could even add a fun Dr. Fauci mask. Complete the look with a gray wig and glasses.

Joe Exotic and Carole Baskin Costumes

The fact that a documentary became so popular shows us just how boring quarantine was this year. These two characters from the Netflix documentary Tiger King are sure to be a popular pick for really fun and easy to create costumes for Halloween 2020.

If you already have a blond mullet and handle bar mustache, then Joe Exotic is the perfect costume for you. If not then you will need a blonde mullet and mustache, and his shirt which you can find here. Any pair of jeans will do. If you really want to impress you can add his Joe Exotic TV hat and a pair of sunglasses.

For Carole Baskin you will need a long animal print dress and a flower crown and long blonde wig.

Expecting Couple Quarantine Baby 2020 Halloween Costumes

Maybe Tiger King wasn’t for you, so you found something else to do during quarantine. You are certainly not alone. The earliest premature babies of quarantine are already starting to fill up neonatal intensive care units. If you happen to be expecting there are some really funny shits available to use as costumes to make your 2020 Halloween fun.

Men’s 2020 Halloween Costumes

Donald Trump 2020 Halloween Costume

There are certainly plenty of Donald Trump costumes available. You can go as a traditional Donald Trump, a ride on Donald Trump, or an alien Donald Trump. The one piece you defiantly need is his hair.

Joe Biden 2020 Halloween Costume

There are not as many costume options for Joe Biden. All you really need is a face mask and a suit. If you don’t have suit there is a last minute costume T-shirt you could wear with the mask.

Shaggy or Fred costumes

Scooby Doo and the Gang were back this year in the new movie Scoob. Because of the new movie, these costumes are sure to be a popular pick this year. For Shaggy Just add a 1970’s shag wig to a green shirt and brown bell bottoms and you are all set!

For Fred you will need a blonde wig, white shirt, blue pants and a red scarf.

Corona Beer Bottle Costume

Because of the reference to the deadly virus, this costume may be a little offensive to some. When news of the Coronavirus first started to hit the news, there were some people who actually thought you could catch it from corona beer. This is what prompted some to wear the Corona beer bottle costume for the Mardi Gras parade. Of course they were not wearing masks and were criticized for the stunt. I still think with the right crowd it could be a fun and fitting costume for 2020 Halloween.

I was able to find a beer bottle costume that resembles the Corona beer bottle. The Corona brand name is not on it, but there are a couple of ways you could add the logo to the costume. You could buy a 24 pack of Corona, cut off the logo from the box, and pin it to the costume. The other option would be to buy a Corona beer T-shirt and stitch the logo onto the costume.

Kylo Ren Costume

Surely Kylo Ren from the late 2019 Star Wars Movie the Rise of Skywalker will be a popular costume for 2020 Halloween. The movie actually came out last year, but it was after Halloween. Don’t forget to add a lightsaber.

2020 Women’s Halloween Costumes

Harley Quinn

Bird’s of Prey was a hit movie this year starring Harley Quinn. Because her costume is fun and sexy, it’s sure to be a popular choice for Halloween 2020.

Velma or Daphne

Dress up as one of the girls from the Scooby Doo gang. These ladies are making a come back this year because of the new movie Scoob.


Surely Rey from Star Wars The Rise of Skywalker will be a popular pick for women this year. The Movie actually came out last year, but it was after Halloween. Don’t forget to add a lightsaber.

Toilet Paper Costume

You can dress up as the first shortage item caused by the mass panic of the corona virus. Yes you can actually buy a toilet paper roll costume. I couldn’t believe it either.

Hand Sanitizer Costume

Because hand sanitizer can be found everywhere due to the virus, nothing says 2020 better than a bottle of hand sanitizer. This is a quick and easy costume sure to get a lot of attention this Halloween.

2020 Children’s Halloween Costumes

For kids safety should be the number one priority. Not that safety isn’t important for adults, but kids are not very good at social distancing. I tried to find some costumes that incorporate a protective face mask. Remember face masks are not recommended for children under 2 years.

Hazmat Suit Halloween Costume

Protect your kid this Halloween with a hazmat suit. Obviously this suit will not actually protect your child but it is fitting for a 2020 Halloween. Make sure to wear a protective face mask.

Essential worker Costumes

We have seen a lot of news footage this year about our essential healthcare workers. Because of this doctor or nurse costumes should be a popular pick for Halloween 2020. You could certainly add a protective face mask and even add a face shield. You could even add a Dr. Fauci or Dr. Birx name tag.

Scooby Doo Costume

Did your kids enjoy the new movie Scoob? If so, This would be a great way to be cute and protected this Halloween. Pair a Scooby Doo costume with an adorable puppy face mask.

Tiger Costume

It’s not really a kids show, but this might coordinate well if mom and dad are going as Tiger King characters. Add a cute Tiger face mask to a tiger costume this Halloween.

Baby Yoda Costume

Baby Yoda is an adorable character from Star Wars The Mandalorian. Because he is a baby, this is a cute costume for younger kids. I was able to find a protective face mask to wear with it, but remember face masks are not recommended for kids under 2.

Mulan Costume

If you have a Mulan fan in your home, then this costume idea is for you. I was not able to find a child size face mask, but I was able to find an adult size face mask to coordinate with her costume. You may have to adjust the ear loops but it could work.

Sonic the Hedge Hog

There was a new Sonic The Hedge Hog movie this year so certainly he will be a popular pick for Halloween 2020. Make sure to add the matching protective gaiter mask.

Have a safe and fun Halloween 2020!

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Guacamole Recipe

Today is national guacamole day! So I thought I should share my favorite guacamole recipe.


3 Avocados

1 medium onion finely chopped

3 garlic cloves

juice of one lime

3 roma tomatoes diced

2-3 jalapenos diced

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons fresh cilantro minced


Pit peel and mash the avocados. See how to pit an avocado for a quick tutorial. Mince the garlic. See how to mince garlic without a garlic press. Slice the lime in half, to obtain more juice place the halves in a microwave for 15 seconds before juicing. Mix all ingredients. Enjoy this guacamole recipe with tortilla chips.

Love jalapenos? Check out my jalapeno popper recipe.

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Stop! Don’t throw away those beet greens! Here’s why.

Why I eat Beet Greens and you should too

I have to credit my father-in-law for this delicious sauteed beet green recipe. He is quite the chef. I’ll probably have plenty more of his tasty recipes to share. This one is a delicious way to use a food many people throw away! Wasting food is terrible, but wasting delicious and nutritious food is even worse. According to Jo Robinson, author of Eating on the Wild Side beet greens are more nutritious than the beets themselves.

My father-in-law was a child during world war II. Because if this he grew up learning to use all of the food that was provided. Some of his childhood stories make 2020 sound like a picnic. Next time your teens are complaining about wearing masks or giving up football have them read Stolen Childhood. This book is a story similar to what my father-in-law went through and a great explanation for why he has so many tips and tricks for using up left overs and scraps. Through him I learned that beet greens are not scraps!

Where to find Beet Greens

Back to the beets. First you will have to find beets with the greens still attached. Many chain grocery stores will remove them and throw them away! I know it’s really sad. You could grow them your self, find them at a farmers market or a good organic produce store. Don’t get discouraged. If you do manage to find beets with the greens attached, as an added bonus you will know you have found yourself a fresh beet. The beet roots will last a long time on the grocers shelf, but the greens will begin to wilt sooner, which is probably why they tend to remove them. Buy beets with the greens!

Sauteed Beet Greens Recipe

Now for the sauteed beet greens recipe. Start by removing the greens from the beets. Save the beets for later. I’ll share some great beet recipes soon.


Stems and leaves form 3 beets

1 medium onion

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/4 cup sour cream


Soak the beet greens and thoroughly wash them.

Chop the stems and leaves. Set aside Mince one onion. Saute onion in a frying pan with the olive oil until softened. Add the chopped stems and leaves and continue to saute until softened. Add the lemon juice and toss to coat.

Sauteed beet greens with onions and lemon juice

Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream.

Prepared beet greens

Serve warm. This dish makes a delicious side for beef or chicken.

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Prepare Ahead Breakfast Sandwiches

These easy prepare ahead breakfast sandwiches are delicious and they are sure to take some stress out of your morning routine. I like to prepare them on the weekend when I have some extra time. They can be frozen and used for hectic mornings during the week.

Recipe for make ahead breakfast sandwiches


12 Eggs

12 English Muffins

3/4 cup half and half

1 finely chopped onion

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1.5 pounds ground bulk breakfast sausage

12 slices of cheddar cheese


Egg mixture ready for the oven
Egg mixture ready for the oven.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Crack 12 eggs into a mixing bowl. Add the half and half, onion, salt a pepper. Whisk until smooth. Pour into a greased 9 x 13 inch pyrex casserole dish. Bake uncovered until lightly browned, approximately 25 minutes. Allow to cool, then cut into 12 squares.

While the eggs are baking, toast the English muffins. I like to use my toaster oven for this. I just love my toaster oven because it is also a convection oven, and air fryer. It’s so handy we use it almost every day. If you don’t have a toaster oven, you could also place the muffins on a sheet pan and broil then for 5-10 minutes.

Sausage Patties in a Ballarini Parma Forged Aluminum Nonstick pan

Divide the 1.5 pounds of bulk breakfast sausage into 12 pieces and smash into patties. Fry on the stove top until cooked through. For easy clean up I recommend using the Ballarini Parma Forged Aluminum Nonstick pan pictured. Set the sausage aside on a paper towel lined plate to cool and drain.

Once the eggs, sausage, and English muffins have cooled you can assemble the sandwiches. Place one egg square, one sausage patty and one slice of cheese in each English muffin. I recommend breaking up the cheese slices so they do not hang over the edge of the muffin. If the cheese hangs over the edge it will make a mess when you reheat the sandwich.

How to prepare breakfast sandwiches for freezing

To Prepare the sandwiches for freezing you will need:

12 moist paper towels

12 10×10 inch pieces of parchment paper

12 zip lock sandwich bags

Wrap each sandwich first in a moist (not wet) paper towel, then wrap with parchment paper. Slide each wrapped sandwich into a zip lock sandwich bag. Pinch out the air and place in your freezer.

How to reheat frozen make ahead breakfast sandwiches

Remove the breakfast sandwich from the freezer. Take the sandwich out of the bag, and remove the parchment paper. Place the paper towel wrapped frozen sandwich on a plate and microwave for 2 minutes. Remove the paper towel and enjoy a delicious breakfast and stress free morning!

Check out my easy pack ahead salad ideas for another way to reduce your morning stress.


Salads for packed Lunches – Save Time and Money

Salads are healthy

It’s that time of year again. Time to start packing some lunches. Are your kids getting tired of sandwiches? Maybe it’s time to switch things up and try something new. How about a packing a nice healthy and delicious salads for lunch? It’s good to get kids started early with a nice variety of veggies in their diet. Try these tasty salads for packed lunches.

Use your leftovers and save money

These tasty salads are also a really good way to use some of your meal leftovers. I love finding creative ways to use my leftovers. Approximately 30-40 percent of the American food supply is wasted.1 We should all do our part to use our leftovers. Teaching the next generation not to waste food is a huge part of that. Teach your kids to eat the leftover food! Eating your leftovers is also a huge cost savings, it’s estimated that on average, each American household wastes over $1800 of food each year!2 Using up your leftover food leads to having more money for other things and a happier less stressful life.3 Here are 4 salads my family enjoys:

4 Tasty Salads for packed Lunches

#1 Caesar Salads for packed lunches

Caesar salad for packed lunch
Caesar salad for packed lunch

Caesar salad is very simple. Traditionally romaine lettuce is the base, although you could also add some baby spinach or other greens for variety. Croutons, Parmesan cheese and a good Caesar dressing is really all you need. I prefer to buy my Caesar dressing in the refrigerated section of the produce department. My favorite is Marzetti Supreme Caesar dressing. If you would prefer a heartier option add some sliced grilled chicken or fresh bacon bits. This salad is an excellent choice when you have some left over grilled chicken. I used a 2 compartment container, but a 3 compartment container would be ideal for packing because you could keep the dressing and croutons separated until you are read to eat lunch.

#2 Pasta Salads for packed lunches

Pasta salad is another family favorite. I usually use Organic Garofalo Tricolor Rotini as the base, but any leftover pasta will do. Just add your favorite veggies. I like to make this one after family pizza night. I add the unused pizza toppings like chopped red onion, black olives, salami strips and mini pepperonis. Other excellent options to mix in are sliced cucumber, mini baby mozzarella balls, and cherry tomatoes. I dress my pasta salad with Kraft Zesty Italian and McCormick Pinch Perfect Salad Supreme. Once again I used a 2 compartment container for this salad. It works great this way because I can add some fruit on the side. A single compartment container would work well for this salad. I love Fit and fresh containers because the lids stay on well and the have an optional freezer pack you can use with them.

Pasta Salad packed for lunch
Pasta Salad packed for lunch.

#3 Taco Salads for packed lunch

Taco salad is the perfect salad to pack for lunch on Wednesday, following Taco Tuesday. I usually just pack up all of the leftover toppings I sliced for Tacos. Chopped lettuce, tomatoes, and onions. Top with cheese and some leftover taco meat. I mix up sour cream with salsa for the dressing and put it on the side to mix in when ready to eat. I used a two compartment container to pack this one, but once again a three compartment container would be better because you could add a side of tortilla chips! Fit & Fresh makes a great 3 compartment container that would work well for this too.

#4 Super-food Salads for packed lunch

I call this super food salad because it is dressed with poppy seed dressing which works well with so many super healthy foods. I used mixed greens with romaine, dried cranberries and pumpkin seeds on my salad. This salad also loves all types of nuts, seeds, berries, cabbage, broccoli, spinach, and Swiss cheese. Get creative with it. I buy my poppy seed dressing in the refrigerated section of produce. Marzetti has a great one. This salad works well, packed for lunch in a 2 compartment container but would also work well in a three compartment container if you want to keep your nuts or seeds crunchier you could separate them when packing and mix them in when ready to eat lunch.


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