DIY Spa-Style Sugar Scrub

3 Step Spa-Style Sugar Scrub Recipe via Tipsaholic

It’s never too early to start thinking about your holiday gift list. This year, why not consider a handmade holiday? It’s not as hard as you think. For instance, a sugar scrub, quickly and easily made from all-natural ingredients right in your own kitchen, makes a thoughtful, inexpensive gift for teachers, friends, coworkers – anyone who would appreciate a pampering, spa-style treatment. If you can measure and stir, you can make this soothing, fragrant sugar scrub.

3 Step Homemade Sugar Scrub Recipe via Tipsaholic

Step 1: What You’ll Need

To make three half-pint canning jars’ worth of scrub, you’ll need

  • 2 cups of white sugar
  • 1/3 cup almond oil
  • essential oil in your favorite fragrance (I like peppermint especially for the holidays)
  • food coloring (a few drops of red for peppermint, blue for lavender, yellow for lemon, etc. – use your imagination!)
  • a mixing bowl and spoon
  • half-pint canning jars

If you have enough jars, feel free to double or triple the “recipe.”

 

Step 2: Mix It Up

Place the sugar in a mixing bowl and slowly add the almond oil, starting with 1/4 cup, stirring until the mixture reaches a consistency you like. Add a few drops of the essential oil and a few drops of food coloring (start with a just a little first, as you don’t want it to be too dark) and blend.

 

Step 3: Package It

Pack the sugar scrub into jars, pressing down a bit with the back of a spoon. Apply ribbon and labels or whatever embellishment you’ve chosen to give your jars a festive, handmade touch.

Now you’re ready to give your handmade spa scrub!

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

When and How to Buy Organic Produce

When and How to Buy Organic Produce | Tipsaholic.com #healthy #organic #shopping #produce #fruits #vegetables

When and How to Buy Organic Produce

We all want to buy the freshest, healthiest fruits and vegetables for our families, but sometimes all the options and labels can get confusing. Organic produce is a great way of lowering the amount of toxins in your diet that can come from food (via pesticides), but organic produce often costs more than conventionally-grown produce. If you’re interested in buying organic, it’s best to know which items are worth the extra money you’ll pay so you can stretch your shopping dollars.

Each year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) puts out a list of the produce for which you should definitely buy the organic version and that for which you can just as safely purchase the conventionally-grown version. The EWG recommendations are based on tests that show the amount of pesticide residue left on fruits and vegetables after washing. Here are the most recent findings:

The Dirty Dozen

These are the items for which you should always buy the organic version: invest your money here!

  1. Apples
  2. Strawberries
  3. Grapes
  4. Celery
  5. Peaches
  6. Spinach
  7. Bell peppers
  8. Nectarines
  9. Cucumbers
  10. Potatoes
  11. Cherry tomatoes
  12. Hot peppers

The Clean 15

For these items, you can safely purchase the non-organic, conventionally-grown version (largely due to their having thick peels or skins that aren’t normally consumed). Save money here!

  1. Sweet corn
  2. Onions
  3. Pineapple
  4. Avocado
  5. Cabbage
  6. Sweet peas (frozen)
  7. Papaya
  8. Mangoes
  9. Asparagus
  10. Eggplant
  11. Kiwi
  12. Grapefruit
  13. Cantaloupe
  14. Sweet potatoes
  15. Mushrooms

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

Featured image courtesy of Better Homes and Gardens.

10 Freezer Meals to Simplify Dinnertime

10 Freezer Meals to Simplify Dinnertime

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Eliminate the stress of making a dinner that everyone will love and is also healthy. Try these great make-ahead options for your family!

tipsaholic-title-freezer-meals

What could be better than having a hot, delicious and healthy dinner every night of the week? How about that same dinner with barely any effort required? It’s true! With freezer meals, a little weekend prep time means that you can pull a healthy dinner from the freezer any time you want — even on your most hectic days.

Below are ten healthy freezer meals to get you started. For the first five recipes, make a large batch of the recipe on the weekend and freeze the leftovers in family- or individual-sized portions. When you’re pressed for time, just reheat them for dinner. For the second five, it’s even easier. Simply prep the ingredients, put them into a resealable freezer bag and either pop the ingredients in your slow cooker in the morning or into your oven when you get home in the afternoon (see each recipe for specific instructions).

Just don’t forget to label all your freezer meals well so you can find the perfect meal in a hurry!

 

5 Favorites to Cook, Then Freeze

1) Baked Chicken Nuggets (picture: slide 1)

2) Southwestern Bean Soup with Chicken and Kale (picture: slide 2)

3) Beef Chili (picture: slide 3)

4) Baked Mac and Cheese (picture: slide 4)

5) Curry Chickpea Burgers (picture: slide 5)

 

5 Favorites to Prep and Freeze

1) Bacon Potato Chowder (picture: slide 6)

2) Pumpkin Coconut Black Beans and Rice (picture: slide 7)

3) Green Chili Pork Tacos (picture: slide 8)

4) Homemade Frozen Pizza (picture: slide 9)

5) Cilantro Lime Chicken (picture: slide 10)

10 Freezer Meals to Simplify Dinnertime | Tipsaholic.com #dinner #cooking #freezer #makeahead

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

Featured image courtesy of Skinny Taste

 

Set-It-and-Forget-It Recipe Roundup: Turkey and Chicken Crockpot Meals

Chicken and Turkey Slow Cooker Recipes via Tipsaholic


Out of ideas and time for preparing hot, delicious dinners? No worries, if you break out your slow cooker. With just a little prep in the morning, you can have a delicious dinner waiting for you when you get home. It’s almost like having a live-in chef! And most recipes make enough for you to enjoy leftovers for lunch the next day, too.

Here are some of our favorite turkey and chicken crockpot recipes – but be sure to check out our recommendations for slow cooker meals with beef or pork. We even have a vegetarian slow cooker recipe roundup as well, whether you eat meatless all the time or only occasionally.

10 Poultry Crock Pot Meals via Tipsaholic

 1) Turkey Chili with Butternut Squash

2) Honey Garlic Chicken

3) Creamy Chicken and Biscuits

4) Chicken Tortilla Soup

5) Lemon-Garlic Chicken

6) Southwestern Two-Bean Chicken

7) Vietnamese Chicken with Bok Choy

8) Ground Turkey Sloppy Joes

9) Sweet and Spicy Turkey and Sweet Potato Stew

10) Chicken Curry

 

featured image via Yankee Kitchen Ninja

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

Set-It-and-Forget-It Recipe Roundup: Pork Crockpot Meals

Pork Slower Cooker Recipes via Tipsaholic.com


Think your slow cooker is only good for soups and stews? Think again. With just a little prep in the morning, you can have a delicious, hearty dinner waiting for you when you get home. It’s almost like having a live-in chef! And most recipes make enough for you to enjoy leftovers for lunch the next day, too.

Here are some of our favorite pork crockpot dishes – but be sure to check out our recommendations for slow cooker meals with beef. We even have a vegetarian slow cooker recipe roundup as well, whether you eat meatless all the time or only occasionally.

10 Pork Crock Pot Meals via Tipsaholic

1) Pulled Pork

2) Parmesan Honey Pork Roast

3) Chinese Pork Roast

4) Red Beans and Rice

5) Jambalaya

6) Caribbean-Style Pork

7) Stuffed Peppers

8) Pork Vindaloo

9) BBQ Loaded Baked Potato Soup

10) Maple Brown Sugar Ham

 

featured image via Chow

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

Set-It-and-Forget-It Recipe Roundup: Easy Beef Crockpot Meals

Beef Slow Cooker Meals via Tipsaholic


With our busy schedules, it’s often daunting to think about cooking a hot, hearty dinner for the whole family at the end of the day. But you really don’t have to, if you rely on your trusty slow cooker. With just a little prep in the morning, you can have a delicious dinner waiting for you when you get home. It’s almost like having a live-in chef! And most recipes make enough for you to enjoy leftovers for lunch the next day, too.

Here are some of our favorite easy beef crockpot meals – but if you eat meatless all the time or occasionally, be sure to check out our vegetarian slow cooker recipe roundup as well.

10 Beef Crock Pot Meals via Tipsaholic

1) Beef Chili

2) Burgundy Beef Stew

3) Vegetable Beef Soup

4) Italian Pot Roast

5) Hungarian Beef Goulash

6) Hearty Lasagna

7) French Dip Sandwiches

8) Barbacoa

9) Beef and Broccoli

10) Chipotle BBQ Beef

 

featured image via Better Homes and Gardens

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

Set-It-and-Forget-It Recipe Roundup: Meatless Crockpot Meals

Vegetarian Slow Cooker Meals via Tipsaholic.com


Trouble finding slow cooker recipes appropriate for full- or part-time vegetarians? Don’t worry: Tipsaholic has got you covered. You don’t need to load your crockpot with meat to enjoy easy, slow-cooker meals. Here are some of our favorite vegetarian slow cooker recipes.

10 Vegetarian Crock Pot Meals via Tipsaholic

1) Leek, Potato and Spinach Soup

2) Vegetarian Lasagna

3) Vegetable Pot Pie with Parmesan-Pepper Biscuits

4) Chickpeas in Curried Coconut Sauce

5) Poblano Corn Pudding

6) Barley-Stuffed Cabbage Rolls with Pine Nuts and Currants

7) Spanish Rice

8) Garlic-Artichoke Pasta

9) Ratatouille

10) Mac and Cheese

 

featured image via Better Homes and Gardens

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

10 Quick-and-Easy Appetizer Recipes for March Madness

10 Quick-and-Easy Appetizer Recipes for March Madness

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On game day, we all know that the real star of the show is the food. Score some big points at your March Madness party with this crowd-pleasing line-up of all-star appetizers. These are all quick and easy to prepare, leaving you more time to enjoy the party — whoops, I mean the game, of course. Even better? Many of these appetizer recipes are actually healthy!

10 appetizer recipes for march madness - Tipsaholic.com

  1. Roasted Red Pepper Cheese Spread

  2. Buffalo Chicken Dip

  3. Red Pepper Hummus with Baked Pita Chips

  4. Pizza Monkey Bread

  5. Low-Fat Ranch Dip

  6. Spicy Sausage Balls

  7. Cheese Straws

  8. Dill Pickle Dip

  9. Sweet Potato Hummus

  10. Badass Nachos

10 Quick-and-Easy Appetizer Recipes for March Madness - Tipsaholic.com

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

5 Alternative Ways to Spend Super Bowl Sunday

Not a football fan? I’m not either. I don’t understand the rules, and I certainly don’t have a favorite team. If you’re like me and Super Bowl Sunday is just another Sunday to you, you’re in luck — here are five great ways to spend the day while everyone else is eating way too many greasy nachos.

5 Alternatives to Super Bowl Sunday


5 alternatives to super bowl sunday

1. Start a new series on Netflix streaming.

Watched House of Cards yet? Wondering what all the fuss is over Orange Is the New Black? Find out by spending the day in front of the television just like everyone else – minus the football.

2. Go to a movie.

Even for a newly released movie – like Labor Day with Josh Brolin and Kate Winslet (in theaters on January 31) – you likely won’t have to arrive early at the theater to get tickets. Hurray for no lines!

3. Book a dinner reservation.

You know that popular new restaurant that you’ve been dying to go? Chances are that, as long as it’s not a sports pub, on Super Bowl Sunday it will be easy to get a reservation.

4. Shop ’til you drop.

Crowds at the mall will be much smaller than usual. Take advantage of emptier stores and those coveted parking spaces right near the door.

5. Read a good book.

Fire up your Kindle and download one of the latest New York Times‘ best sellers, or check out some of Tipsaholic’s other page-turner recommendations. Enjoy the peace and quiet.

image sources: netflix, movie, dinner, shopping, book

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

 

 

Keep Your New Year’s Resolution: Five Healthy Food Blogs

Tipsaholic - 5 Healthy Food Blogs


Was “eat better” or “eat healthier” one of your New Year’s resolutions for 2014? It’s an annual resolution for so many of us. While our desire and commitment may be strong, sometimes it’s just too hard to find easy-to-make, healthy recipes that still taste delicious. Tipsaholic is here to help by introducing you to five healthy food blogs that can kick-start your menu planning and aid you in sticking to your healthy eating resolution.

 

tipsaholic title divider - 5 healthy food blogs

1. Healthy Green Kitchen

Winnie of Healthy Green Kitchen is a recipe developer trained in naturopathy. She has been cooking since childhood, as she grew up in a family that owned a renowned restaurant in New York City. In addition to healthy, seasonal recipes, she blogs about organic gardening, backyard chickens and beekeeping. Recent recipes include Homemade Yogurt, Chewy Chocolate Mint Cookies, Honey Soy-Roasted Salmon, Black Bean Chili with Chocolate and Roasted Cherry Tomato Frittata.

 

2. Healthy Seasonal Recipes

Katie of Healthy Seasonal Recipes is a recipe developer with a degree in Culinary Arts whose focus is eating seasonally and in moderation. So while she goes crazy for beets and arugula, she doesn’t shy away from bacon or Philly cheesesteaks. Recent recipes include Thai-Style Fish Cakes, Cheese and Greens Omelets, Cheddar Creamed Spinach, Chicken and Biscuit Casserole and Sweet Potato Marshmallow S’Mores Cookies.

 

3. The Lemon Bowl

Liz of The Lemon Bowl writes that she features easy, seasonal recipes “that just so happen to be good for you.” Having achieved significant weight loss through healthy eating and exercise, she is an advocate on her blog for helping others reach their goals via her healthy recipes. Recent recipes include Easy Beef and Broccoli, Blueberry Kale Smoothie, Slow Cooker Banana Nut Oatmeal, Sweet Potato and Corn Hash and Mexican Turkey Soup.

 

4. Recipe Renovator

Stephanie of Recipe Renovator specializes in taking delicious recipes and remaking them with healthier ingredients – without sacrificing the flavor. She’s a trained nutrition educator with over 30 years of cooking experience. Recent recipes include Chunky Tomato Sauce, Creamy Chicken and Broccoli Casserole, Healthy Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies, Pumpkin Risotto and Strawberry-Almond Salad with Balsamic Fig Dressing.

 

5. Skinny Taste

Gina of Skinny Taste features delicious, low-fat recipes the whole family will enjoy. Her emphasis is on healthy recipes that don’t skimp on flavor – making them both “skinny” and “tasty”, as her blog’s name implies. Recent recipes include Crockpot Balsamic Pork Roast, Easy Macaroni Casserole, Three Cheese Tortellini and Mushroom Soup, Cauliflower Tots and Mini Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins.

feature image via Healthy Seasonal Recipes

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

10 Treats to Make Using Biscoff Spread

It used to be that one of the reasons I looked forward to taking an airline trip was because I might get a package of Biscoff cookies with my complimentary beverage. Once I discovered that the rich, cinnamon cookies can be purchased at the grocery store, I gave up flying (no, just kidding). So imagine my delight when I discovered Biscoff spread: it’s all the delicious taste of Biscoff cookies in a spreadable format.  Move over, Nutella: there’s a new delicious snack spread in town!

But more than that, I am so excited about all the ways that I can use this delicious treat in a recipe!!

Biscoff spread recipe ideas2

10 Biscoff Treat Ideas

Great Treats to Make Using Biscoff Spread

 

Baked goods:

1) Biscoff Rice Krispy Treats: What a yummy spin on an old favorite

2) Chewy Biscoff Blondies: A gooey treat that the whole family will love

3) Pumpkin Biscoff Bread: An easy quick bread with great fall flavors

4) Apple Biscoff Bars: The perfect combination of cake and cookie, plus Biscoff and apples

 

Drinks:

5) Biscoff Iced Coffee: Give ho-hum iced coffee a cinnamon-y twist

6) Biscoff Smoothie: Greek yogurt and soy milk make this smoothie a winner

7) Hot Biscoff Milk: A yummy alternative to hot chocolate

Snacks:

8) Biscoff Fruit Dip: An easy after-school snack

9) No-Bake Biscoff Cookies: Cookies that you don’t have to bake? Yes, please!

10) Biscoff Yogurt Parfait: A breakfast parfait, loaded with fruit

 

Any of these great Biscoff treat ideas would be fun to make for your family!  Which one are you going to try?

Cooking with Coconut Oil

Cooking With Coconut Oil via Tipsaholic.com #coconutoil #healthy #cooking


Chances are you have seen or read recently about all the great benefits of coconut oil: it has easier-to-metabolize saturated fats, it’s better for high-temperature cooking like stir frying, and it can be a healthier substitute for vegetable or canola oil in baking, not to mention its delicious slightly nutty, tropical flavor. Isn’t it time you tasted it for yourself? Here are just a few ways to get started cooking with coconut oil. (Note: coconut oil is packaged in solid form – for many recipes, you may need to warm it in the microwave a bit to liquify it before using).

6 Easy Ways to Cook With Coconut Oil via Tipsaholic.com

1) Make a smoothie: Add richness and a hint of the tropics to your next smoothie. This blueberry coconut smoothie with coconut oil may be your new favorite on-the-go breakfast.

2) Spread it on toast: Spread some coconut oil on warm toast instead of butter for a healthier breakfast.

3) Drizzle it on popcorn: Try using liquified coconut oil for a unique twist to traditional buttered popcorn.

4) Add it to granola: Substitute coconut oil for vegetable or canola oil for your favorite granola recipe. This recipe is my absolute favorite!

5) Whip up a salad dressing: This sweet potato and spinach salad calls for a warm coconut oil and balsamic vinegar dressing – a perfect fall lunch!

6) Bake healthier french fries: Whether you prefer white russets or sweet potatoes, you can make crispy, baked french fries in the oven with minimal fuss using coconut oil. Make the process even easier by following the helpful tip in this recipe from the Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York to melt the coconut oil on the baking sheet while the oven preheats!

And don’t forget that you can use coconut oil for much more than just cooking! Check out Tipsaholic’s 10 Uses for Coconut Oil.

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

Tips for Organizing Your Garage

Organize Your Garage in 3 Steps via Tipsaholic.com #garage #organization #cleaning

Is your garage floor still covered with the past summer’s pool toys, flip flops, garden tools and bicycles? Are you parking your car outside while the clutter builds up inside, where your car is supposed to be? You’re not alone. Follow these helpful tips to get your gear organized and your car inside before the arrival of the wet, snowy weather. (featured image via Better Homes and Gardens)

3 Steps to an Organized Garage via Tipsaholic

1) Hang it up: There’s a lot of unused storage space in your garage – but it’s not on the floor. Take advantage of the walls and ceiling to get your garage organized. Bikes and garden tools can easily be hung from sturdy hooks anchored to the walls or the ceiling. A peg board or lattice screwed to the walls can provide an easily accessible home for hand tools that you use often. And I love this idea from the Family Handyman: If your garage has exposed joists, attach wire closet shelving to the joists to create overhead storage cubbies.

Keeping your stuff off the floor also means less chance of anything getting ruined when the garage floor is covered with wet winter slush from the car.

2) Box it up: Small items that you won’t need for the winter (balls, sports gear, gardening supplies, etc.) can be put into clear plastic storage bins and put on shelves or stacked in a corner. Using clear bins means that there’s no need for labeling because you can see what you’ve stored away!

3) Recycle it or give it away: While you’re organizing everything that’s in your garage, it’s a good time to evaluate each item you come across. Do you really need to keep saving that broken shovel handle? Or how about the bike your daughter has outgrown? And how much space do you want to devote to a towering stack of empty plastic plant containers? Lighten the load and make your organizing task easier: whether you toss it, recycle it, yard sale it or give it away, get rid of the items you just don’t need anymore.

Now that your garage is organized, how about tackling the kitchen?

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.

Fun and Easy Halloween Party Treats

5 Quick and Easy Halloween Party Treats via Tipsaholic

Anyone can give out candy bars or boxes of raisins on Halloween (but if you have raisins, I’m skipping your house – just sayin’). Use these 5 ideas to quickly and easily turn ordinary fodder into a memorable Halloween party treat with just a little effort and creativity.

5 Easy Halloween Party Treats via Tipsaholic

Halloween S’mores

Place one ghost-shaped marshmallow Peep, one fun-size chocolate bar and two graham crackers into a sandwich bag for an individual DIY s’mores kit kids will love.

 

Scary Popcorn Hands

Buy a box of clear plastic gloves (the kind used in cafeterias and restaurants). Put a candy corn in each finger and then fill with popcorn or caramel corn. Tie off the top with black and orange ribbon.

Candy Broomsticks

Push a small pretzel stick into the bottom of a mini peanut butter cup – looks just like a tiny edible broomstick!

 

Witch Hat Cookies

Turn a striped fudge cookie upside down so the fudge-coated bottom is showing. Put a dollop of orange or green icing in the center and press an unwrapped chocolate kiss into the icing so the colored icing is flattened out.

 

Tootsie Pop Ghosts

Drape a white paper napkin over the top of a Tootsie Pop. Gather the napkin in to the stick and tie off with black and orange ribbon. Use a black marker to make eyes and a mouth on your “Tootsie ghost.” To serve, poke the sticks into a piece of styrofoam.

 

Julianne Puckett is the creator of Yankee Kitchen Ninja, a blog about what she calls “stealthy homemaking” — healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare, DIY gardening tips and the occasional craft project. A designer, writer and former suburban-dwelling IT professional, she lives in rural Vermont, where she struggles to balance the siren call of her inner farmer with her love of cute shoes and cocktails.