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Lunchbox Smiles with Hillshire Farm Naturals #sponsored

September 1, 2014

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Getting those lunch boxes filled with tasty sandwiches can be a daunting task. Just how many PBJ sandwiches can a kid eat? I had the yummy pleasure of sampling the newest product from Hillshire Farm. Introducing Hillshire Farm Naturals.

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My hubby loves turkey sandwiches and the Hillshire Farm Naturals offers two varieties of turkey and two varieties of ham.

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The Slow Roasted Turkey Breast gets my vote, although the Hardwood Smoked Turkey Breast is just as tasty. It would take making your own turkey to get this flavorful goodness. Who has time for that? Simply create your favorite turkey sandwich, add your condiments and let the smiles begin with each bite.

The Black Forest Ham tastes just like a slice off your Sunday dinner ham fresh from the oven! It is delicious and I did not even have to turn on the oven!

Keep Hillshire Farm Naturals on hand for yummy sandwiches anytime. It comes packaged in double-sealed, re-sealable tubs. Moms will love the new Naturals as they contain no artificial ingredients, preservatives, colors or added nitrites/nitrates. They are also 97 to 99 percent fat free! The delicious taste comes from the  slow roasting and perfect seasons. Of course it is healthy and delicious, it is from Hillshire Farm.

Look for the new Hillshire Farm Naturals at your favorite grocer.

Here is a tempting sandwich recipe:

California-Style Turkey Sandwich

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· Prep time: 5 minutes

· Cook Time: 0 minutes

· Makes: 1 sandwich

· Ingredients:

o 2 slices wheat bread

o 1 oz. herb mayonnaise

o 6 slices Hillshire Farm® Naturals Slow Roasted Turkey

o ½ avocado, peeled, thinly sliced

o 2 slices Monterey Jack Cheese

· Directions:

o Spread mayonnaise on one slice of bread. Top with Hillshire Farm® Naturals TM Black Forrest Ham, avocado slices, Monterey Jack cheese

o and second slice of bread.

o Variation: Substitute low fat mayonnaise, ½ teaspoon each chopped fresh parsley and thyme for herb mayonnaise.

Many thanks to Hillshire Farm for providing the review product.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use.

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Coca-Cola and Walmart present Effortless Meals #sponsored

July 15, 2014

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The summer is in mid swing and boy is it becoming pretty hot. Much too hot to cook! Having a sandwich every now and then is okay. How about something fast and easy? Coca-Cola and Walmart have teamed together to bring you Effortless Meals!

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Step into your local Walmart (that has a deli) and you will find a very inviting Effortless Meals selection. The bright red Coca-Cola signage with the full displays of the meals you can choose are very appetizing!

I could not locate the Effortless Meals in my area but I did find them at a store close to my parents home. Coke and Walmart Effortless Meal Bundles include:

Pizza Meals – One Coca-Cola 2 Liter product and a Marketside Pizza in choice of Take & Bake or ready made, Pepperoni or Cheese.

Sandwich Meals – One Coca-Cola 16 oz product paired with a Marketside Grinder Half of choice.

Rotisserie Chicken Meals – One Coca-Cola 2 Liter product and a Marketside 29oz Rotisserie Chicken in flavor of choice and a side salad.

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I found the Effortless Meals section very close to the check out. Having it so close makes it easy to grab and go! Thanks to Coca-Cola and Walmart I was provided a gift card to share the meals with my family. It was tantalizing to choose the meals for tasting. I selected one of each pizza meals and rotisserie chicken meals. Each meal can easily feed four.

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The Rotisserie Chicken Meal is just $10 in my area! I would think the prices would be similar nationwide. The chicken was so tender and scrumptious tasting. It comes with a side dish of choice – Potato Salad, Macaroni Salad or Cole Slaw. What a great meal to pick up on the way to the beach or the park!

The Pizza Meal was a super deal at $8.46! Again a fabulous idea for a day outing! Grab one on the way home for a quick delicious dinner meal.

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For those participating in the My Coke Rewards program – the Effortless Meals Walmart deal gives you 10 bonus points!

Enjoy your summer with Coca-Cola and Walmart!

Many thanks to Coca-Cola and Walmart for providing the review product.

Disclosure: Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use.

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A Boy Named Charlie Brown turns 50

June 12, 2014

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Can you believe the music of the beloved Charlie Brown Christmas is celebrating its 50th Anniversary? The music we sing in our heads is the unmistakable tune known as Linus and Lucy.

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Fantasy Records has just re-issued the CD – A Boy Named Charlie Brown. This classic Original Sound Track Recording by the Vince Guraldi Trio will have you doing the Christmas scene dance! The CD has been remastered and includes two bonus tracks!

Take a trip down memory lane with the sounds of Vince Guaraldi Trio. The jazzy upbeat tunes keep me hopping through my day. I can’t help but smile with each track. I find myself actually picturing the classic Peanut show!

Check out the Tracks:

1. Oh, Good Grief 2:22

2. Pebble Beach 2:49

3. Happiness Is 3:40

4. Schroeder 1:52

5. Charlie Brown Theme 4:21

6. Linus And Lucy 3:04

7. Blue Charlie Brown 7:27

8. Baseball Theme 3:13

9. Freda (With The Naturally Curly Hair) 4:34

10. Fly Me To The Moon 8:58

11. Baseball Theme (Alternate Take) 1:58

Linus and Lucy is the theme you will remember the most! All the tunes are a joy to listen to.

You can order A Boy Named Charlie Brown from Amazon or download on iTunes. For more information, visit Concord Music Group.

Many thanks to Conqueuroo for providing the review product.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use. Sweepstakes not affiliated with Facebook.

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Grill this Season with Fire & Flavor

May 12, 2014

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Summertime means endless whiffs of good things cooking up on grills. My family uses our gas grill year round. I also have a new Big Green Egg. I am a newbie to the Big Green Egg style of cooking. So far I have managed to make some pretty darkened (burnt) chicken and pork chops. Once I got the hang of how it cooks – I made some delicious meals with the help of the seasonings from Fire & Flavor.

Fire & Flavor specializes in all natural cooking products. I visited with them at Natural Products Expo West. I was intrigued by the Cedar planks and wanted to learn more. Fire & Flavor was so kind in sending a few seasonings my way, which went to good use in my Big Green Egg cooking.

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The Garlic & Herb Chicken Brine is all natural, fat free and gluten free. Simply use a 1 to 1 ratio of brine and water to submerge your protein and let it brine according the the directions. I made chicken breasts and boy were they delicious! My hubby loved the flavor and the moistness! I can’t wait to try the Beef Brine! I have plans to make a brisket, as soon as I have more confidence in my Big Green Egg skills. The Beef Brine has the flavors of Espresso and Chilies – yum!

Fire & Flavor knows how to perk up pork chops! I made a scrumptious batch using their dry rubs. The Everyday Rub can be used for a variety of meats. The Everyday Rub is mild and savory – made from chilies, paprika, brown sugar, onion, and garlic. I loved the flavor and the pork chops were quickly gone. For a bit of boldness – try the Fire & Flavor Coffee Rub! Fresh Roasted coffee is blended with ancho chile pepper! Powerful taste explosion in every bite! It definitely has a warm kick to it!

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Fire & Flavor features incredible recipe ideas! It sure makes a person hungry and wanting to try every flavor!

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Look for Fire & Flavor products at locations nationwide.

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Bring Fire & Flavor to your kitchen and summer grills! Happy lip lickin mouths will want more!

Many thanks to Fire & Flavor for providing the review product.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use.

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SunButter Sunflower Seed Spread – Nutty Goodness

April 22, 2014

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Can you imagine growing up without the luxury of having a simple peanut butter and jelly sandwich? There are many people with a severe allergy to peanuts. My family has a young one with a peanut allergy. We really have to watch the foods by reading all labels.

I had a chance to taste an interesting alternative to peanut butter. SunButter is made from sunflower seeds! The sunflower seeds are rosted and ground into a delicious, nutritious spread.

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SunButter comes in several varieties including Natural, and Organic spreads. There are creamy and crunchy varieties too.

SunButter was so kind to share with my family. I really enjoyed the super nutty flavor of the Natural No Stir Creamy SunButter. I have always loved mucnhing on sunflower seeds on outings and the SunButter is the same great taste! I can’t believe how incredible the sunflower seed flavor is!

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SunButter is an allergy friendly product as it is processed in an peanut free and tree nut free facility.

All SunButter varieties are:

  • Nut-free
  • Peanut-free
  • Tree nut-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Dairy-free
  • Egg-free
  • Processed in a strictly nut-free facility

SunButter has a nice selection of recipes. With a great tasting sunflower spread, I am sure the recipes would be delectable! SunButter Crunchy Cookies sound delish! I just might make these.

Look for SunButter in your favorite grocery store or at online retailers.

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Many thanks to SunButter for providing the review product.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use.

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Air Wick New Familiar Favorites Giveaway – closed

April 10, 2014

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Do you ever walk past the Cinnabon store and wish your home could smell like that? How about when the clothes come out of the dryer freshly scented of Snuggle, you just breathe deep. Remember the clean fresh scent of Baby Magic? All three aromas are now available from Air Wick New Familiar Favorites collection.

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Air Wick so kindly provided an Air Wick Freshmatic Automatic Sprayer with two of the newest fragrances. I love the Cinnabon fragrance placed in the kitchen. It smells like something delicious is baking. Hubby asked what was cooking! The Cinnabon aroma is not too overpowering but it does to job to take care of those pesky unpleasant cooking smells. I must say, it makes me wish I had a Cinnabon roll. I guess smelling it saves calories!

I set the Snuggle Fresh Linen fragrance in the hallway close to the living room. What a comforting aroma! The Snuggle fragrance smells like fresh laundry, clean and crisp, just out of the dryer. It really brings the Snuggle factor. It made my living room feel so inviting. It felt like the Snuggle bear was sitting on my sofa.

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New Air Wick Familiar Favorites Collection includes:

Cinnabon Classic Cinnamon Roll Fragrance

Snuggle Fresh Linen Fragrance

Baby Magic Clean Baby Fragrance

Look for these scents wherever Air Wick is sold.

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Bring Familiar Favorites into your home.

Here is your chance to win!

ONE lucky reader will win an Air Wick Freshmatic

PLUS 1 set of 2 Scented Oils in Familiar Favorite fragrance of choice .

Thanks very much Air Wick.

Giveaway ends on 4/25/2014 at 11:59 PM EST. ONE PERSON PER HOUSEHOLD and IP address. Open to Continental US addresses only. No PO Boxes. Must be 18 years of age and over. Winner will be chosen randomly and contacted by email. Please respond within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.

Many thanks to Air Wick for providing the review and giveaway product.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use. Sweepstakes not affiliated with Facebook.

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Mrs. Renfro’s Gourmet Salsas Giveaway – closed

April 7, 2014

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Renfro logo_red-blk_final_manyways-blackOne funny thing about the California food scene…we use salsa more than ketchup! in my home, I use salsa on eggs, salads, sandwiches, burgers, and add some to a soup for a zesty flavorful taste. One of the best tasting salsas I have ever had is from Mrs. Renfro’s Gourmet Salsas.

Mrs. Renfro’s has been around since the 1940′s. They started out making spices and pepper sauces that were sold in Texas. The addition of products, including chow chow, created a sales boom. Today Mrs. Renfro’s makes more than 30 salsas, relishes and sauces which can be found in all 50 states plus internationally in Canada, England and the Caribbean.

mildchowchow_lg_largeMy favorite of Mrs. Renfro’s is the Mild Chow Chow . This pickled condiment made from cabbage, onions, and peppers, has such a flavorful taste. My sample jar is just about empty! I spooned it onto my egg white omelets. I spread it on my turkey sandwich. I dolloped it in my salad. The taste woke up most anything I put it on! I need to buy more Mild Chow Chow! My hubby’s fave was the Peach Salsa. Adding peaches to the already scrumptious tomato, onions, and peppers base gives this salsa a balance of sweetness. The Mild Tomato Relish is fantastic to use wherever you would use a ketchup.peachsalsa_lg_large

As you can tell, I am a mild heat level type of person. I am a chili heat wimp! The mild line of Mrs. Renfro’s is perfect for me. For those that enjoy a little mouth burn, Mrs. Renfro’s offers medium and hot levels in addition to the mild. My father-in-law loves the Sweet & Hot Peppers. If you are really adventurous – try the Ghost Pepper Nacho Cheese Sauce. Nope, nope, nope not for me. There are so many flavors of Mrs. Renfro’s, there is something for each palate!ghostpeppernachocheesesauce_large

Look for Mrs. Renfro’s at your favorite supermarket. You can also order directly online!

Check out these amazing recipe ideas on YouTube!

Black Bean Salsa Soup

Divine Vegetarian Breakfast Burritos

Connect with Mrs. Renfro’s

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Get those chips ready!

Here is your chance to win!

ONE lucky reader will win 4 jars of Mrs. Renfro’s in your choice of flavors.

Thanks very much Mrs. Renfro’s!

Giveaway ends on 4/21/2014 at 11:59 PM EST. ONE PERSON PER HOUSEHOLD and IP address. Open to Continental US addresses only. No PO Boxes. Must be 18 years of age and over. Winner will be chosen randomly and contacted by email. Please respond within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.

Many thanks to Mrs. Renfro’s for providing the review and giveaway product.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use. Sweepstakes not affiliated with Facebook.

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Black & Decker supports National Nutrition Month

March 25, 2014

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DCBannerMarch is National Nutrition Month. It is perfect timing since hubby and I have really been making lifestyle changes in our eating habits plus more. We have been eating many more veggies – which is amazing since I have almost never seen a hint of a vegetable on my hubby’s plate. I am impressed with his food choices lately. It has made a big difference in how he feels. While we are both enjoying more nutritious foods – I am also gluten-free. Lots of fruits and veggies for me too!

George Foreman and Black & Decker want to remind everyone about National Nutrition Month. Think about making changes for your family. I had the chance to try a Black & Decker Toaster Oven to see how I could make something easy and better for us. It was a challenge but I came up with two amazing meals so far that hubby just devoured. He has always preferred using a toaster oven for reheating certain foods, but never for actually cooking! I made it work!

SAM_0002SAM_0003My Tomato Tuna Delights were a huge hit with him. They were quick to make and baking them in the Black & Decker Toaster Oven was much easier than heating my big oven. I simply took one beefsteak tomato and sliced it in half, scooped out a bit of the inside to make a cup, added some tuna that I mixed with mustard, and topped it off with a smidge of reduced fat cheese. I set the Toaster Oven to bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes. Ding! They were done in no time. The tomato was tender and the tuna melt on top was scrumptious! I got raves from hubby!

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Another quick meal I made was Avocado Sunrise. I took a ripe avocado, sliced it in half, then in each of the pit impressions, I added an egg. (I had to scoop out a bit more of the avocado to make room for the egg). A dash of pepper on top and I baked them in the Toaster Oven for 12 -15 minutes until the egg was soft cooked. The avocado was so creamy and the egg was done perfectly. I already have a request to make both of these again. Anytime thanks to Black & Decker!

Using the Black & Decker TO1373SSD Toaster Oven is so easy! The controls are clear and easy to read. It heats up to the temperature you need very quickly. It comes in very handy, especially when you just need to make a couple servings at a time. They are great for reheating too! It also makes toast – fitting four slices at a time. Plus the new EvenToast technology allows for better and consistent toasting! How about making the change to whole grain breads?

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Look for the Black & Decker Model TO1373SSD at Macy’s. It can toast, bake and broil! I love the compact size! It fits very nicely on my counter. A perfect addition to any kitchen.

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Make something delicious, nutritious and quick! Happy National Nutrition Month!

Many thanks to Black & Decker for providing the review product.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use.

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Cookies con Amore #Expowest Giveaway – Closed

March 19, 2014

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One of my very favorite new products at the Natural Products Expowest happened to be a cookie. Not just any cookie, these were Gluten Free Italian cookies with all the taste of traditional Italian cookies.

Introducing Cookies con Amore! Fernanda, the talented lead baker, has been lovingly creating cookies for holidays plus family and friends for many years. Since 2005 Cookies con Amore became established. The company has grown but the still make the cookies in small batches.

When I started my personal Gluten Free adventure, it was a bit hard to give up some of my favorite treats around the holidays. It has been fun trying to find tasty GF replacements. Cookies con Amore took their amazing recipes and created Glutenetto, a line of Italian Gluten Free cookies. These are the best Gluten Free cookies I have ever tasted! They even look gorgeous!

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At the Natural Products Expo West, I had the wonderful experience of tasting these little gems. One of my all time fave cookies is the Raspberry Linzer. The Gluten-Free Raspberry Linzer brings all the mouth watering tastes of an original. My goodness it is like any linzer I have ever had before. The buttery crisp cookies were lovely with the sweet jam filling inside. I can’t believe this is a Gluten-Free cookie!  Delicious!

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The Ricciarelli, traditional Tuscan wedding cookie has the flavors of orange and almond! They are melt in your mouth scrumptious. The cookie was the perfect texture and I loved the fresh orange taste.

Gluten Free Cuccudati Fig cookies -a cookie roll stuffed with figs, dates, raisins and chocolate chips. The combination is decadent! I would order a whole pound of this one!

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Cookies con Amore Glutenetto cookies are so good, my family even loved them, and they do not follow any GF restrictions. They just loved the cookies! Everyone can enjoy Cookies con Amore as they offer a full line of Italian cookies including the GF and regular assortments. All are made with tender loving care in small batches from the highest quality ingredients.

Purchase: Cookies con Amore can be found at Whole Foods Markets or ordered directly online.

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Taste the best Gluten-Free cookies ever!

Here is your chance to win.

TWO lucky readers will each win a 1 pound assortment of the Glutenetto Gluten Free cookies! (they are delicious)

Thanks very much Cookies con Amore!

 

Giveaway ends on 3/31/2014 at 11:59 PM EST. ONE PERSON PER HOUSEHOLD and IP address. Open to Continental US addresses only. No PO Boxes. Must be 18 years of age and over. Winner will be chosen randomly and contacted by email. Please respond within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.

 

Many thanks to Cookies con Amore for providing the review samples and giveaway product.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Gratis product was received in order to write my honest review. The opinions above are my own and were not influenced in any way. Others experience may vary. Terms of Use. Sweepstakes not affiliated with Facebook.

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Natural Products #Expowest – Post Show Recap

March 17, 2014

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I recently attended the Natural Products Expo West trade show in Anaheim. I could not believe the size of the show this year. There were more than 2500 exhibitors! It was a wealth of nutritional information.

I enjoyed finding many gluten free and natural products. Here are a few of my favorite products:

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San-J Gluten Free Tamari Soy Sauce. I have been using this brand since going Gluten Free. They introduced me to a travel package of individual packets for on the go! They have an extensive line of Gluten Free sauces.

 

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Mina’s Purely Divine – I chatted with the lovely Mina about her gluten free baking mixes. She made one of her favorite recipes -Coffee Cake using her Gluten Free All Purpose Baking Mix. It was scrumptious! Visiting her site I found lots more recipes. I like the package sizes they offer which makes it easy to have the baking mix on hand. She also has available a GF Bread Mix and GF Chocolate Cake mix.

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Frontier Soups – Homemade in minutes. These prepackaged seasoned mixes would make it super easy to make a meal in about 30 minutes. I had a sample of Gluten Free South of the Border Tortilla Soup. I really liked the flavor and am sure it would be a hit in my family. They offer 28 Certified Gluten Free soup mixes!

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Barney Butter – I have heard a lot about Barney Butter. I finally had the chance to try some. Barney Butter is Almond Butter in a variety of flavors. They are all certified gluten free and peanut free. My favorite flavor is the Cocoa + Coconut. It tastes like a candy bar. All the 6 flavors I sampled are very satisfying.

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Cucina-Antica – Gluten Free Pasta Sauces. The very inviting aroma of pasta sauce drew me into their booth. One item I am missing in pasta since going gluten free. The sauces I sampled were the Tomato Basil and the Tuscany Pumpkin. The freshness was amazing. The Tomato Basil would make the perfect anytime pasta dinner while the Tuscany Pumpkin reminded me of fall. The sauces at Cucina-Antica are all natural, no sugar, low sodium and gluten free. Thanks for the taste!

The most outrageous food product I spotted (and would not dare try):

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Paqui Tortillas – a tortilla chip called Haunted Ghost Pepper. Seriously……why? Okay I shared my sample bag with my Father-in-Law who always says the hotter the better. Well he said these chips burned all the way through his body. From entry to exit if you get my point. Only the brave chili heads should give these a taste.

A favorite non food product:

 

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Flipside Hats – I have a hat obsession. When I spotted these adorable hats, I knew I had to have one. Flipside Hats uses repurposed materials into limited edition hats. I bought one of the Sun Hats. I wore it on a Sunday outing and got a couple of questions about where I got my adorable hat. Love it!

Overall it was a very eye opening Natural Products Expo West. I will be featuring a few more products coming soon.

Disclosure: No monetary compensation was offered or accepted for this post. Just passing on information. Terms of Use.

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