Friday, December 6, 2019

3 easy holiday snacks you can make in the microwave

This is a sponsored post by Challenge butter, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible!

Cookie plates are everywhere this time of year, but I've always preferred holiday snacks. Obviously, there are many things I love about snacks, but one of my favorite things is that it's harder to measure how much I've eaten so I feel less guilty about myself. Is that nuts? (lame snack joke)

The following three snack recipes are incredibly easy. I made them in the microwave for heaven's sake!

When I first made the nut mixture, I didn't brown the butter, and it was definitely tasty. But it was INCREDIBLE when I tried it with brown butter, and I knew there was no going back. I can't believe how much brown butter can elevate a recipe.

I used Challenge butter for the brown butter in this recipe. Challenge products are my favorite because they use fresh milk and cream from local dairies, and they're put in the dairy case in just 24 hours, as opposed to 5-7 days, which is the case for most other brands.

I want to point out one very important thing: It is imperative that you use a large microwave-safe bowl and a cover when browning the butter. The butter will explode everywhere in your microwave if you try to use a tupperware container. Yes, I know from personal experience.

Toasted Brown Butter Rosemary Nuts
  • 3 cups unsalted raw mixed nuts
  • 3 Tablespoons Challenge unsalted butter
  • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper (add 1/4 teaspoon more if you like spice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  1. Place mixed nuts in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 2 minutes to toast the nuts.
  2. Put butter in large microwave-safe bowl and cover bowl. Microwave for 2 minutes. Remove from bowl and stir. Continue to microwave in 30-second intervals until the butter is amber in color and there are brown flakes of butter at the bottom of the bowl.
  3. Remove butter from microwave. Stir in brown sugar, rosemary,  salt, cayenne pepper, cumin, and black pepper.
  4. Add nuts to bowl and mix to combine.
  5. Microwave in 30-second increments for 4 minutes, stirring each time.
  6. Spread out nuts in single layer on parchment paper and let cool before serving.
Recipe adapted from No Spoon Necessary

White Chocolate Peppermint Popcorn
  • 24 cups (about 2 microwave bags) popped plain popcorn (sea salt is fine, but not buttered popcorn)
  • 12 ounces white chocolate or white candy coating
  • 1/2 cup peppermint candies (about 8 candy canes)
  • Red sprinkles (optional)
  1. Spread out popcorn in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  2. Crush candy canes by placing them in bag and smashing them with rolling pin
  3. Melt white chocolate in microwave in 30-second intervals until smooth, stirring each time. It should take about 2 minutes.
  4. Drizzle white chocolate over popcorn and sprinkle with crushed peppermint candies and sprinkles.
  5. Allow white chocolate to harden before breaking into pieces and serving.
Recipe adapted from Taste of Home

Chai-spiced granola
  • 4 cups rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups mixed nuts
  • 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted, or olive oil
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. Microwave just the granola in microwave safe bowl for 2 minutes, stirring at the 1-minute mark.
  2. Combine all other ingredients with the oats and microwave on high for 4 minutes, stirring after every minute. The oats should start to brown.
  3. Cool granola on parchment paper before serving. 

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