Cheese and Olive Stuffed Chicken {Recipe}

by Christine - From Dates to Diapers on April 7, 2015

As you may know, Ray loves to cook. He finds being in the kitchen very therapeutic and makes quite the production out of making us all a meal, be it breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner. I, on the other hand, am always looking for ways to cut my time in the kitchen short… unless I am baking.

When I was introduced to Pearl Olives to Go!, I instantly began thinking of ways I could use these cups of yummy goodness to make time in the kitchen a bit easier. They come in a variety of flavors, including Kalamata (my fave for snacking) and even sliced black. All are gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, cholesterol-free, trans-fat-free, GMO-free, vegan and Kosher –  what healthier way to snack on the go? Of course, these individual cups are perfect to throw in the kids lunch, or even my purse, for a quick snack, but they do make using them in salads, main dishes, and more, that much easier.

Find Pearl Olives to Go! at Walmart – in stores only.

 photo Cheese and Olive Stuffed Chicken We recently made a delicious chicken breast stuffed with provolone cheese and black olives. Oh, my! SO GOOD!! Here’s what we did.

Cheese and Olive Stuffed Chicken - step by step photo Cheese and Olive Stuffed Chicken - step by step Gather your ingredients:
1 cup shredded provolone cheese
2 Pearls Olives to Go single serve cups, chopped black (Or you could use the sliced black olives, to make it easy!)
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 large egg white
1 cup seasoned dry breadcrumbs
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

Prepare Cheese Mixture:
Combine shredded provolone, chopped black olives, and pepper. Set aside.

Prepare Chicken Breasts:
Slice each breast horizontally, nearly through.
Add cheese mixture to each sliced chicken breast.
Beat egg white, dip closed chicken breast, and dredge in breadcrumbs.
Heat oil over in a large nonstick skillet medium-high heat.
Add chicken and cook until browned on one side, about 2 minutes.

Transfer chicken to the prepared baking sheet, browned-side up, and bake until it is no longer pink in the center – about 25 minutes.

All of my kiddos loved the cheese and olive stuffed chicken. In fact, we didn’t make enough and ran out! I’d like to make a yummy sauce to top the chicken, or perhaps just add more cheese next time. But, we all agreed – This was a pretty tasty meal!

As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.


Great Gift Idea – Incredibly Easy Peppermint Bark

by Christine - From Dates to Diapers on December 14, 2014

Growing up, between Thanksgiving and Christmas, my Mom would set aside several days amongst the hustle and bustle to bake with my sisters and me. Later, we would get together for a big baking day. We would make pies and cookies, and other sweet treats. I have carried on this tradition with my own children. Cranberry Chocolate Chunk Cookies, Oreo TrufflesRolo Turtles, and Peppermint Bark are among our favorites and we make them every year!

We have made our Peppermint Bark as gifts every year, but making it in cookie cutters adds a special touch. They are super easy little gifts to make and call for just a few simple ingredients – cookie cutters, parchment paper, candy melts, candy canes, goody bags, and ribbon.

We purchased everything at Walmart for about $21 for all 18 gifts. The Wilton holiday cookie cutters were just $8.97 for a box of 18! Of course, you can certainly choose plastic cutters, or even painted ones, but this was a steal for as many gifts as we needed to make. Each was laid out on a sheet of parchment paper.

Peppermint Bark Gift Idea - step 1

Next, we melted two packages of Wilton Milk Chocolate Candy Melts and filled the cookie cutters, some completely and others only half full. We topped the half filled cutters with Wilton White Candy Melts and let them all cool.

Peppermint Bark Gift Idea - Step 2

But, before they cooled completely, we crushed several candy canes and topped the chocolate filled cutters.

Peppermint Bark Gift Idea - Step 3

Voila! Perfect little gifts for anyone on your list who may enjoy a sweet homemade gift!

Peppermint Bark Gift Idea

We placed each cookie cutter filled with Peppermint Bark in a festive goody bag and we tied them up with some ribbon. My kids and I have great fun making these simple little treats each year. This year, they will make a perfect gift for each of their friends in the neighborhood!

Peppermint Bark - gift idea

In addition to all of our favorites listed above, we plan to check out for some new ideas for some fun baking days next week.

As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.


Fresh Stone Fruit from Walmart makes great Summer Treats

by Christine - From Dates to Diapers on July 2, 2014

My kids and I love fresh peaches, nectarines, and plums; the juicy stone fruit doesn’t last long around here. So, when Walmart asked me to highlight their stone fruit and the 100% freshness guarantee, I jumped on the opportunity. I think my kids were just as excited as I was. In fact, I had to fight everyone off while I prepared the ingredients for the sweet compote I wanted to make!

I was pleased to find the fruit at our local Walmart to be quite beautiful and very fresh. I’ve always been leery about which fruit to purchase, mostly because I’ve never been good about identifying which pieces are ripe enough to eat and not just bruised.  The following Tips from the Farm on choosing peaches is incredibly helpful –

Every one of the peaches, nectarines, and plums that I purchased for my compote were just right. If not, however, I would have marched back to Walmart and cashed in on the 100% money-back guarantee. (So glad I didn’t have to do that!)

Stone Fruit Compote recipe

For our Stone Fruit Compote I adapted a recipe for jam that I found in one of my old cookbooks. I didn’t want the sparse chunkiness of jam, but rather I desired it to be really chunky, so the goodness of the fruit could be savored. Julia is trying to eat the compote directly from the jar, as I type this, but I plan to use this deliciousness as a topping for ice cream, on toast, or spooned on to a piece of coffee cake. The possibilities are endless!

This recipe is super easy and pretty quick. The hardest part is cutting up all the fruit, but if you nibble on it as you cut, you forget about the work involved!

I juiced an orange, mixed the juice with 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar in a large saucepan, and brought it to a hard boil on the stove. I placed the chopped fruit of 2 large peaches, 2 nectarines, 5 small plums, and a bit of zest from a lemon into the sugar mixture, stirring until the sugar dissolved and the mixture began to boil again. I then reduced the temperature to low and allowed the fruit to simmer for about 20 minutes, mashing and mixing occasionally.  When done, I poured the mixture in to small jars and placed in the refrigerator to cool.

Stone Fruit Compote

I ended up with quite a few extra peaches after making my compote, so I decided I would make some fresh Peach Lemonade. Timmy helped me juice the lemons, and then we added a bit of water, sugar to taste, and a sliced peach to the carafe. A fresh peach slice was the perfect garnish, but let me just tell you that it disappeared (all that was edible) almost immediately after Julia snapped a few photos for me! It’s the perfect refreshment on a hot summer day.

Fresh Peach Lemon-Ade

Here are some other great ideas to sink your teeth in –

What is your favorite stone fruit? And how do you like it? I’d love to see your favorite recipes!



Homemade Cookies ‘n Cream Ice Cream

by Christine - From Dates to Diapers on December 16, 2013

My mom makes the best ice cream. Vanilla is usually the all-around favorite, but any time she adds fruit, cookies, or candy, it’s quite a delicious treat. Well, today my kiddos had the privilege of making Cookies ‘n Cream ice cream with Mimi. She agreed to share her recipe, which is super sweet!

(scoop of ice cream)

We got almost everything we needed for the ice cream at Walmart, our one-stop shop this holiday season, including the Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker. (Mimi already had the Vanilla extract in her pantry.) We used all natural and organic ingredients, so it’s extra tasty.

You can make the vanilla ice cream base and add whatever your little heart desires. Try fresh strawberries after you try the Oreos. You can thank me later!

Here’s what you need:
2 organic eggs
1 cup sugar
2 3/4 cup half-and-half
1 cup whipping cream
1 tablespoon real vanilla extract
Optional: 1-2 cups candy, fruit, or cookies

Here’s how you do it:
In a large bowl, beat eggs until thick. Beat in sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Stir in half-and-half, whipping cream, and vanilla. Pour into ice cream canister and mix according to machine’s directions. Add optional ingredients about 5 minutes before ending the churning. Freeze ice cream overnight.

How to make Cookies and Cream Ice Cream

We placed the container of ice cream in the freezer overnight, and devoured it all the next day. YUM!

As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.


Easy Brie & Fig Appetizer

December 6, 2013

Entertaining and the Holiday’s just seem to go hand in hand, don’t they? Nothing quite gets me into the spirit like filling my home with good friends and family, and great food! Whether you are hosting an elegant Christmas party, or you are just looking for a delicious and easy appetizer to wow the neighbors […]

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{Better Than Your Grandma’s} Stuffing Recipe

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Whether it comes from a box or it’s Grandma’s special recipe, the stuffing is an essential part of every Thanksgiving feast. I must admit, I often default to (and really like) the stuffing that comes from a box. I always thought homemade stuffing seemed like quite the chore to prepare, but I was determined to […]

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My Favorite Fall Treat – Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

October 21, 2013

Most of my friends know me as having a major sweet-tooth. This reputation does not come from my love of cakes, cookies, or sweet breads, but more from my love of candy! Sure, I love a good cake, but definitely have my favorites. Carrot Cake and Pumpkin Cake are two for which I would turn […]

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Chinese Chicken Salad {recipe}

October 11, 2013

I’m a fan of the rottiserie chicken. Our quick and convenient, go-to meal for the entire family consists of a couple of garlic rotisserie chickens, veggies, and fresh bread. We can feed our entire family for less than $20, and that’s a steal for a growing family of nine! With any left-overs, I like to make […]

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Easy Weeknight Meals {With Homemade Lasagna Sauce Recipe}

October 1, 2013

Our kiddos have been back to school for three weeks now. I feel like we’re just getting in to a good routine. Well, it’s a routine anyway. Home.   Snack.   Homework.   Playtime.   Dinner.   Chores.   Showers.   Bed. Every night. The same thing. There is one thing that is generally not ever the same (in the same week, […]

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Kids In The Kitchen :: Chocolate Puddin’ Pie

September 14, 2013

The other day, Ben begged me to make him a Chocolate Pie. I had never made one before, but knew it couldn’t be too difficult. With some help from Ben, we found a recipe and made a list of needed ingredients. Off to the store we went and before long we had everything we needed. […]

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Italian-Inspired Pork Chops {YUM} #PorkBeInspired

June 26, 2013

Have you noticed that pork cuts have new names? Well, a little over a month ago the National Pork Board decided that changing the names of the cuts to be more “steak-like” would make it easier for us to make the connection in the grocery store to grilling like a steak. For instance, a pork […]

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National Licorice Day is this Friday!

April 9, 2013

I know, I know… there is a “national day” for just about everything. BUT! I have always been a big fan of black licorice (Natural Vines are darn good!) and Red Vines are very popular around here, so I was pretty excited when I was offered some tasty bits of goodness in exchange for helping you […]

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Resurrection Rolls

March 30, 2013

Several years ago, to illustrate Jesus’ death and resurrection, we made Resurrection Cookies. The kids and I had a wonderful time discussing each step, as we remembered the Easter story. We were pleasantly surprised by a hollow cookie as the end result – just like Jesus’ tomb. This year we decided to make Resurrection Rolls. […]

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Double Dribble Peanut Butter CupCakes

March 15, 2013

What happens when you put two of my favorite things together? Well, when those two things are Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and baked goods the result is nothing less than scrumptiousness!! Enter the Double Dribble Peanut Butter CupCakes – chocolate cupcakes, filled with peanut butter cream, topped with rich chocolate frosting and a mini Reese’s Peanut […]

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Sugared Tortilla Snowflakes

January 19, 2013

Snowflakes have always fascinated me. I loved studying them when I was little, and again when I taught my kids about these beautiful six-pointed flakes. Tiny specks of frozen water; each one unique. Flakes that can blow through as a blizzard, trapping families in their homes. Flakes that, when falling ever so lightly, can be […]

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Breakfast Casserole

December 17, 2012

We are big fans of breakfast around here any time of the year, but even more so around the Holidays while we’re enjoying the lazy mornings of winter break. There is just something abut sizzling bacon and the aroma of fresh brewed coffee that beckons everyone into the kitchen. This delicious breakfast casserole is sure […]

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Aunt Jo’s Caramel Apple Dip

November 19, 2012

Over the weekend my Aunt Liz hosted a jewelry party. At this gathering guests could view and purchase antique costume jewelry that had been collected over the years by my Aunt Jo. Now, my Aunt Jo is the Antique Queen! Her house is furnished and decorated solely with antique pieces and is absolutely lovely. Anywho, […]

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“The best pizza ever!”

August 29, 2012

We all agree that the sourdough pizza we made tonight, inspired by my grandfather’s famous recipe, is the best pizza ever. You will want to bookmark this page because any time you are craving pizza, you will want this pizza! Poppy Joe’s Sourdough Pizza First, coat both sides of sourdough bread slices in olive oil, […]

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Snickerdoodle Cupcakes

August 26, 2012

These Snickerdoodle Cupcakes are some of the best cupcakes I have ever made, or even tried. The cupcake itself really does taste like the cookie after which it is named, and the frosting is cinnamony-sweet and creamy. The perfect treat for any cupcake or Snickerdoodle fan! My sister’s boyfriend is celebrating a birthday this weekend […]

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A Retreat From The Crazy

February 5, 2012

These past several days have been rough… My headaches are back in full force, Timmy has bronchitis, and Ben has a stomach bug and was awake and vomiting violently for several hours last night. Miraculously I was blessed with a bit of quiet time this afternoon and, while I have laundry to fold and dishes […]

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Don’t Forget the Avocados

February 3, 2012

Are you ready for the big game on Sunday? If you are anything like me, you are probably heading out bright and early on Saturday morning to gather some last minute party foods. I have an idea before you head out, though… Approximately 71.5 million pounds of avocados are expected to be consumed during the […]

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Holiday Entertaining With Giada

December 20, 2011

We all love to be in the kitchen. Julia and I like to bake yummy treats, while Ray and the boys like to create savory dishes. Ray would actually like to spend more time cooking, and I certainly won’t complain. I always look forward to noshing on his dishes. Ray was most excited about one […]

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