Hot Caramel Apple Cider ~ Free Spooky Treats & Party Eats Halloween Recipes


Hot Caramel Apple Cider ~ Free Spooky Treats & Party Eats Halloween Recipes

Just in time for Halloween is Mr. Food’s Spooky Treats & Party Eats eCookbook – completely FREE! 🙂 This digital cookbook features 34 frighteningly delicious recipes that are easy and quick to prepare. You could definitely dazzle guests at a Halloween party with amazing food thanks to Mr. Food! You’ll be able to find recipes to entertain the taste buds of adults, teens and young children.

Get Your FREE Halloween eCookbook:

  1. Click the link above
  2. Enter your email address
  3. Search for the recipe book you want (this one is called Spooky Treats & Party Eats)
  4. Scroll down and click the red “Get Our Free eBook”

Like it? Repin it on Pinterest!


What You’ll Find Inside:

  • Halloween Drink Recipes: Spiderlicious Punch, Very Bloody Mary, and Hot Caramel Apple Cider (pictured, top)
  • Halloween Appetizers: Ghoulish Glazed Meatballs, Bloody Witches Fingers, and Graveyard Guacamole
  • Halloween Party Food Recipes: Spooky Shepard’s Pie, Jack O’ Lantern Chili, and Spaghetti Brains and Eyeballs
  • Halloween Treats: Pumpkin Patch Cheesecake, Spooktacular Cupcakes, and Trick-or-Treat Bars
Spiderlicious Punch
Mummy Dogs
Mummy Dogs
Spiderweb Cake
Spiderweb Cake

Each recipe is complemented with a photo of the final result in full color, so you know exactly how each one should turn out! The listed ingredients and directions are straightforward, and some recipes have short notes to help you make the most out of your spooky masterpieces.


Thanks Mr. Food Test Kitchen for the pics!

Sour Cream & Chives Cucumber Bites Recipe {Great After School Snack}


Sour Cream & Chives Cucumber Bites Recipe

Perfect after-school snack idea! Cucumbers are low in calories and high in good stuff. And, if you’re like me you have tons of cukes from your garden right now! They’re low-cost at the grocery store too. yay!

You can purchase low-fat or low-calorie sour cream if you prefer. I like to limit serving size and go for the good stuff, myself. 🙂 Whatever you do, this is a great way to get veggies in, and curb hunger between meals. You can even make this in a clean-eating and low-carb way to suit any diet plan! If you don’t feel like going to the effort to make the dressing, you could opt for creamy ranch dressing instead. Yum!

I love Top the Tater (see my Top the Tater recipe) in this, but there are lots of options besides that. You can mix a dry ranch dressing mix into sour cream (1 pack per 16 oz or a half pack for 8 oz), or use a pre-made chip dip. Just go easy on the dressing to keep this a healthy snack.


Sour Cream & Chives Cucumber Bites Recipe {Great After School Snack}
Recipe Type: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Author: Wendy
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 4 servings
Healthy, quick and affordable, and a great choice for after-school snacks or in-between meals. Filling and low calorie, low carbs and clean eating!
  • Cucumber, partially peeled, cut into thick rounds and seeds removed
  • Carrots, peeled, cut lengthwise (I used baby carrots)
  • Top the Tater, or Sour Cream and Chives, or Ranch Dressing
  1. Prepare cucumber by peeling whole, or peel stripes.
  2. Cut into thick rounds, remove seeds (I used an apple corer but a spoon works fine)
  3. Cut carrots into small pieces
  4. Spoon filling into hole in cuke, add carrot garnish




Texas Roadhouse Cinnamon Butter Recipe


Texas Roadhouse Cinnamon Butter Recipe

Yum! Just wanted to share. If you love Texas Roadhouse restaurants, you can make their to-die-for sweet butter at home!

I’ve seen this recipe online without honey, but it’s sorely lacking without it. Don’t forget the honey! 😉

Texas Roadhouse Cinnamon Butter Recipe
Cuisine: American
Prep time:
Total time:
Texas Roadhouse Cinnamon Butter Recipe
  • 2 sticks sweet creamy butter, softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup honey
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  1. Whip together and use as a spread on rolls or bread


Fast & Easy Refrigerator Pickles Recipe {1 Hour}


Fast & Easy Refrigerator Pickles Recipe {1 Hour}

Whether you love bread and butter pickles, or sweet pickles, you will love how easy this recipe is!

I make my 1-hour refrigerator pickles sugar free with Stevia natural sweetener, so the whole jar is under 200 calories (that’s under 3 calories per slice or 15 calories per wedge!)  Adding the cup of sugar adds 773 calories, so Stevia is a great alternative!

My garden is doing great, and the produce just keeps coming! I planted two types of cucumbers: pickling and burpless. Some of us love pickles, although my stepson has coined the phrase “pickles are nasty!” lol

A few years ago I tried making refrigerator pickles for the first time. I was surprised how easy it is! Compared to the all-day affair of canning real pickles, this was a fantastic quick treat! You can enjoy fresh pickles in about an hour.

Now’s a great time to make 1-hour refrigerator pickles because of the abundance of fresh vegetables from the garden. That not only makes them available to those of us who garden, but it makes them available at better prices for those who shop farmer’s markets, local grocery stores and CSAs. Be sure to see my tip about buying cukes to pickle at the grocery store!

Although quick pickles like these are yummy, they’re not quite as tasty as canned pickles. And, they won’t keep as long.

Get creative! You can pickle any crisp vegetable, such as onions, peppers, carrots, green beans, cauliflower, shallots, asparagus, and of course cucumbers! I’m going to try zucchini, although they’d have to be harvested quite small to make that work, I think. You can even pickle eggs! I like to add in extra things for flavor. Typically I use pickling cukes and add in a few onions and peppers. It’s delicious!

After many attempts – some delish and some not-so-much – here’s my tried and true recipe for 1-hour refrigerator pickles!

TIPS to making the best pickles ever:

  1. Brine Recipe: Although I give an exact recipe, you can change it up however you want! The pickling brine consists of vinegar, salt, sugar and pickling spices.
    Vinegar: typically white vinegar is used, but you can also use cider vinegar, white or red wine vinegar, almost anything can be used (except balsamic vinegar). Depending on the recipe, you’ll use straight vinegar or you might dilute it with water.
    Brine wouldn’t be brine without salt. Salt helps to remove water from the veggies while promoting good, useful bacteria.
    Sweeteners can be changed up, from sugar to brown sugar or honey. I’ve also had great results using Stevia natural sweetener.
    Pickling spices: you can actually buy a product called “pickling spice” or you can buy the spices separately (or grow them yourself!) Pickling spices that can be used include mustard seed, dill seed, dill weed, bay leaf, turmeric, peppercorns, celery seed, cloves and garlic.
  2. Prepare your produce.
    Step one is choosing the vegetables you want to pickle. This goes all the way back to deciding what to plant in your garden! There are “pickling cucumbers” that make great pickles. Varieties you might see are “Kirby” or “Liberty” cucumbers. Compared to slicers which are tasty when eaten plain or with lemon pepper (not pickled), pickling cucumbers are usually less tasty, and they’re short, thick, irregular shaped, bumpy skin with white or black spots on them. If you want to pickle cucumbers but you don’t have a garden, do not buy cukes at the grocery store and try to pickle them! They’re coated in wax, and the brine will not soak in properly. You can buy unwaxed cukes at a farmer’s market or CSA.
    Step two is picking your produce at the best time. I recommend harvesting cucumbers when they’re less than 2″ in diameter, but that may vary depending on the type of cuke. The bigger around they get, the more seeds will develop. However, they’ve actually have created hybrid cucumbers that are “burpless” or, quite literally, they don’t make you burp. And of course, you can pickle many different types of veggies – not just cukes!
    Step three is washing and trim off any roots, ends or bitter peels (if you don’t want). Then slice or cut into the shape you want.
  3. Since you’re not preserving them for long-term storage, you can sterilize the jar in your dishwasher or by dipping in boiling water, but the typical canning process is not used in this recipe. Add your prepared veggies to the clean, dry glass container and pour boiling brine over it to cover completely. If you don’t have quite enough liquid, add cold water to cover. Leave a little headspace (room at the top of the jar left empty) so it can mix easily, but don’t worry about specific headspace since we’re not actually canning these in the traditional sense with a hot water bath.


Fast & Easy Refrigerator Pickles Recipe {1 Hour}
Recipe Type: Condiment
Cuisine: American
Author: Wendy
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 3 quarts
Easy and fast 1-Hour Bread and Butter Refrigerator Pickles. Plus, a sugar-free variety with less than 5 calories per slice! Includes best cucumbers to pickle, and which vinegar to use and what not to use!
  • 6-10 pickling cucumbers, sliced thin or in wedges
  • ~ optional other veggies (e.g., onion, carrots, etc., see list)
  • 1 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 Tablespoon Kosher coarse (or pickling) salt
  • 1 cup sugar or Stevia natural sweetener (great sugar-free snack!)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole mustard seed
  • 1/2 cup fresh dill, chopped
  • 3 clean quart jars with lids
  1. Add all ingredients except veggies in a large pan, bring bring to a boil on stovetop.
  2. Prepare veggies and add to jars, leaving 1″ headspace
  3. Add brine to jarred veggies (if not quite enough liquid, add water to fill completely, this will vary depending on how packed veggies are)
  4. Cover jars and turn over several times to mix.
  5. Place in refrigerator, turn jars to mix again in one hour. Then turn 2x daily to keep them mixed.
  6. I’ve heard they keep in fridge for 2-3 months. Mine never last that long!



Coconut Long Island Tea Recipe {Adult Drink}


Coconut Long Island Tea Recipe {Adult Drink}

If you love the taste of coconut and Long Island Iced tea, try this yummy combo I created using just two ingredients!

Captain Morgan has a new line of flavored rum. They’re yummy and fun to experiment with too!

Coconut Long Island Tea Recipe {Adult Drink}
Recipe Type: Adult Beverage
Cuisine: American
Author: Wendy
Try this yummy adult version of iced tea with a twist of the tropics! Coconut Long Island Tea Recipe {Adult Drink}
  • 1 shot of Captain Morgan Coconut flavored rum
  • Glass of iced tea
  1. Mix ingredients together and pour over ice.
  2. Enjoy responsibly.



Angry Orchard Hard Cider Copycat Recipe {3 Simple Ingredients}


Angry Orchard Hard Cider Copycat Recipe {3 Simple Ingredients}

My new favorite thing is hard cider! I don’t love Redd’s but I do love Angry Orchard. I just don’t love how much it costs! So, I set out to make my own. After an exhaustive search online, I came to the realization that nobody has done this! Or, at least, I couldn’t find a recipe to make hard cider. It’s exciting to be the first, but there were many failed attempts before I finally made a drink that everyone agrees tastes like hard cider and is super good!!

I like to improvise, so I’ve added many things you can substitute ingredients with. That way you can always enjoy a hard cider, no matter what you have on hand.

Just three easy ingredients!

  • Beer:  I used Michelob Golden Light because it has only 90 calories and is low carbs, since you’re only using about half a can per glass that’s just 45 calories per serving!
  • Apple juice or apple cider: There are so many varieties of juice! I tried from concentrate (pictured) and it was great. I also tried Cran-Apple juice and I very much preferred it to plain apple juice. Give it a whirl and let me know which you liked best
  • Lemon: Again, so many options! I tried (and liked) lemon juice from concentrate, lemonade, Diet Mt. Dew (this was great!), Margarita mix, Bud Light Lime-a-Rita… the sky is the limit. Just so you get a little lemon taste in there with it. Go easy on the lemon so it doesn’t overpower it
Angry Orchard Hard Cider Copycat Recipe {3 Simple Ingredients}
Recipe Type: Beverage
Cuisine: American
Author: Wendy
Prep time:
Total time:
Angry Orchard Hard Cider is delicious, but costs a lot and is high in calories. Make your own low-cal alternative to Redd’s! Do it yourself and save money!
  • Beer
  • Apple juice or apple cider
  • Lemon
  1. In a tall glass, add half a can of beer of choice (6 oz)
  2. Add 2 shots of apple juice or cider of choice
  3. Add 1 shot of lemonade or 3 squirts of lemon concentrate
  4. See article for more suggestions and ideas for substitutions



Beergartita Recipe – CopyCat Bud Light Lime-A-Rita (YUM!)


Beergartita Recipe – CopyCat Bud Light Lime-A-Rita (YUM!)

If you like Bud Light Lime-a-rita (my favorite!) but hate the price, try this awesome recipe you can make at home. They’re great for parties!!

Ever since Bud Light came out with their yummy Limearitas, I have been in search of an alternate that wouldn’t cost so much. At $10 – $15 per 12-pack, the bud light Limearitas are a little high price for my taste. And, they’re little cans, not the full 12 oz we’re used to in a beer.

If you’ve been a fan for a while, you may have the FREE Jose Cuervo Margarita ball we posted years ago. This is the perfect time to use it! 😉

Check out my Beer-ga-rita recipe! You can add in Mango, Strawberry and Raspberry flavors to achieve their newest Mang-O-Rita,  Straw-Ber-Rita and Raz-Ber-Rita!


Mashed Potato Salad Recipe


Mashed Potato Salad Recipe @Gimmiefreebies_Recipes

Last month we went to Arkansas and Texas to bring my mother-in-law to a bluegrass festival. While there we enjoyed all the southern cooking, sweet tea, and I actually got to try something new that I fell in love with:  Mashed Potato Salad!!  Forgive me, I’m from Wisconsin originally and had never tried this. All I can say is YUM!

It’s basically the same as regular potato salad, but you mash the potatoes before you mix them in. Cook them a little firmer than mashed potatoes so they’re not mushy. The South seems to be torn on whether to use mayonnaise or Miracle Whip, so I used half of each.

When I cook, I like to try new things, so I may never make something the same twice.  It’s also hard to write down what I’ve done! Anyway, give this a try. It would be great for your summer barbecues. If you like potato salad, you’ll love this!

Skinny Strawberry Margarita with Skinny Girl {or Strawberry Lemonade without it!}


Strawberry Margarita with Skinny Girl {or Strawberry Lemonade without it!}

Have you tried Skinny Girl Margaritas? I got some on clearance, so I stocked up! (LOL!!) I was sad to find that they’re really strong tasting (to me, anyway) and I couldn’t drink them. Well, what’s a frugal girl like me to do? I couldn’t let them go to waste. So, I invented this yummy Strawberry Margarita recipe that’s super skinny and so tasty!

Like it? Repin on Pinterest!

A little background: I don’t like strong tasting drinks. But, if you do, Skinny Girl might be great for you! Also, to be fair – since I got it on clearance there’s a chance that it’s not the freshest and that might be why it tastes this way. I don’t know; it’s my first time trying it.  But, it tasted more like straight tequila to me. My exact words were, “this tastes like turpentine” to which my husband responded, “have you tasted turpentine?”  Me: “Well, no… but… oh, you know what I mean!”

I also have a skinny margarita mix recipe you might want to try with if you’d rather not buy Skinny Girl pre-made margarita (the alcohol’s already in it).

Here’s the Skinny Strawberry Margarita Recipe showing what I did!

Skinny Strawberry Margarita with Skinny Girl {or Strawberry Lemonade without it!}
Recipe Type: Beverage
Cuisine: American
Author: Wendy
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 1 serving
Try this easy Skinny Strawberry Margarita made with Skinny Girl (or see my Skinny Margarita Recipe and make it cheap!) So easy, tasty and refreshing!
  • 2 oz Skinny Girl Margarita mix (with alcohol or without), or use our Skinny Margarita recipe
  • 28 oz water
  • 1 packet pink lemonade mix (single serve)
  • 1 packet Fruit Juicy Red (or other punch, single serve)
  • ice
  • strawberries to garnish (optional)
  1. Fill mason jar or large glass half full of ice
  2. Add 2 oz margarita mix, (alcohol, optional)
  3. Add both packets of flavor mix
  4. Fill with water and mix well
  5. Serve cold, and enjoy responsibly!


Skinny Watermelon Moonshine Recipe (Costs Only 25¢) | Moonshiners

skinny watermelon moonshine

Skinny Watermelon Moonshine Recipe (Costs Only 25¢) 

This Skinny Watermelon Moonshine Recipe is SO easy and quick! And Tasty??  It will be your new favorite!

Like it? Repin it on Pinterest!

Unlike most moonshine recipes you find online, this Moon Shine recipe does not call for Moonshine!!  I mean, who has moonshine laying around? LOL! Not me! Okay, some people might. Especially since the TV Show Moonshiners on Discovery Channel has gained popularity. So, if you do have moonshine, you can use it in place of the alcohol in this Moonshine recipe. But if you’re like me, you probably do not have moonshine in stock. No worries, you can still make this!

This is a very basic recipe. Feel free to get creative with it! Using watermelon vodka and Malibu rum (coconut flavor) really enhances the flavor. Obviously, if you don’t use watermelon vodka it’s not going to taste like watermelon moonshine! It will be more like hard lemonade (which is also super good! I love me some Mike’s Hard Lemonade, and love that this cost so much less!)

Price breakdown: 

  • A 1 liter bottle of watermelon vodka and coconut rum will cost between $15 – $20, depending on brand and your location. If you get the super cheap stuff, it might be as low as $10 per bottle.  For argument’s sake, let’s say you get the good stuff for $18 each, which makes it about $0.80 per 1 oz shot.  This drink calls for 2 shots, so getting “the good stuff” liquor will run around $1.60. (This could be as low as $0.88 for 2 shots if you get no-name stuff.)
  • Now for the lemonade. You can make any type of pink lemonade. I prefer Crystal Light because it makes this a skinny drink recipe. If you want to make the pink lemonade in 2-quart batches, you can pour in to fill the glass as you’re mixing each drink.  Walmart has Crystal Light Pink Lemonade, SIX – 2-quart packs for $2.68.  That’s about $0.44 per 2-quart pack, 22¢ per quart. You’ll use just about 1/2 quart due to ice and other ingredients. So, your Crystal light will cost about 11¢ (half-quart).  Or, you can use other single-serve drink mix pack. I found Wyler’s Light Pink Lemonade (sugar free, 5 calories per serving) at Walmart, 8 packs in a box, for $0.80. Basically, if they’re under 11¢ each, they’ll cost the same as the 2-quart packs of Crystal Light. Kool-Aid could be an even cheaper option, at between 5 -10¢ per 2-quarts (adding a cup of sugar will add about 15¢). At any rate, let’s figure the drink mix at 11¢. 😉
  • Ice and water are basically free.
  • That means you’re making a whole quart (I’m using a quart jar) for about $1.71. A quart is 32 ounces, so that’s like FOUR glasses (it’s a big drink!) So, a glass of Watermelon Moonshine costs as low as 25¢ (or 43¢ for the good stuff).

How’s that for a cheap date? 😉


Little-known fact: there are 22.5 shots in a 1 liter bottle of liquor.


This is SO yummy! You can make a big batch, or a single serving.

Note: Please enjoy responsibly. Age 21+ only (or legal drinking age in your area)

Thanks to I Save A 2 Z for the inspiration!