Root Beer Float and Real Fruit Pudding Pop Recipes

We have been having lots of fun making our own popsicles this summer. Here are a couple of our favorite recipes.


Root Beer Float Pudding Pops

What You Need:

  • 1 box Vanilla pudding – 4 serving or 6- it just depends on how strong of a vanilla flavor you want it.
  • 1 cup vanilla ice cream – Bryers now carries Lactose free, if you need it, and it is really good
  • 1 cup milk – lactose milk also works
  • 1 cup water (may want a little more if you use the 6 serving box)
  • 2 -3 tsp root beer extract – depending on how strong of a root beer flavor you want
  • Popsicle mold or cups – size is your choice!
*makes about 8 popsicles



Step 1: Combine all ingredients together.


Step 2: Mix everything together. In a blender is quick, but messy to get out once mixed and in a bowl uses extra energy!


Step 3: Put in cups or popsicle mold Freeze for 1.5 hours and then place sticks in, if you do not of the sticks that come with the mold. Will be solid after 4 hours and even better overnight.


Step 4: To remove from cup/mold, run cup under warm water for at least 15 seconds to help remove the popsicle. It usually took me longer than 15 seconds. A good squeeze or 2 to the sides helps and I knew I was close once I could see a few tiny air bubbles. Do not do it too long or it will melt the popsicle! =)

Step 5: Eat and Enjoy or remove and package them separately in plastic baggies with a tie to enjoy later. I am going to make a ton and stock up. We cannot keep these around long enough!

Here is another fun recipe:

Fruit Pudding Pops

What You Need:

  • 1 package pudding
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup vanilla ice cream
  • Chopped up fruit




Step 1: Mix milk and pudding together. Add chopped fruit. The strawberries were so yummy….possibly better than the root beer pudding pops! We had some pudding/ice cream/milk mix set aside from making the Root Beer Pops. That is why we have the small containers.

Step 2: Put pudding mix in popsicle molds and place in freezer. After 1.5 hours insert popsicle sticks (if needed) and wait for 4 hours to eat. Yum, yum, yum!




Homemade Doughnuts


These homemade doughnuts are super yummy and a fun treat to make! I let each child make their own batch and they seemed to enjoy having control over their bowl. One batch of this recipe is more than enough for one family, but since we had 3 batches we had plenty of doughnuts to share with friends.

It seems like I am posting a lot of recipes this summer, but if I have to make food, I might as well make it fun and involve the kids! I hope you enjoy this one!

What You Need:

  • 1 c Buttermilk
  • 1 Large Eggs
  • 3 c Flour (at least – you may need more)
  • 1/2 c Sugar
  • 1/3 c Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp-ish Nutmeg (add to taste. I like nutmeg, so I add more!)
  • 3 T Butter (melted)
  • 2 mixing bowls
  • mixing spoon
  • flat surface
  • cooking oil for frying doughnuts
  • tongs or large fork to flip doughnuts in pan
  • large pan
  • powdered sugar or sugar/cinnamon mix (optional)

** Do Not use a mixer for this recipe!**



 Step 1: Mix flour, salt, nutmeg, baking soda together.


Step 2: In a separate bowl mix together buttermilk, eggs and sugar. Mix well. Add butter and mix well again.


Step 3: Mix wet ingredients and dry ingredients together. It will be very sticky and when things get sticky kids start tasting!


Step 4: On a well floured surface pat out the dough. You will want to add a half a handful of flour on top before patting/rolling the dough out, this will prevent the dough from sticking as much on your fingers or rolling pin. Rub hands together to get extra dough off your hands…use flour to help rub it all off.


Step 5:  Preheat cooking oil in a pan to 375 degrees. Cut doughnuts with a doughnut cutter or make your own with 2 round cups (one smaller than the other).


Step 6: When the oil is ready, fry the doughnuts until brown. I do not have a thermometer, so for me, I knew the oil was hot enough when I added a bit of dough to the oil and it popped back up to the top quickly. I just had to play with the level of heat while frying.

…make sure you flip them over…

I tried to keep the kids at a safe distance, but they could still see what was going on.


Step 7: Remove browned doughnut from heat and place on a paper towel to cool for a few minutes. Once cooled roll/shake the doughnut around in some powdered sugar. If the doughnut is too warm, the powdered sugar will dissolve and be kind of sticky.

Step 8: Then eat and enjoy! Yum!



I did try baking these for a healthier version on 375 degrees. To be honest, they were not as tasty as frying. If I did it again, I would brush the dough on the cookie sheet with egg whites (like with the soft pretzels). Then brush the doughnuts with butter once removed from the oven and top with white sugar/cinnamon or powdered sugar.


If I had to do it again:

I would roll the dough out for one child at a time and then cut the doughnuts before moving on to rolling out the next child’s dough. Letting all three at once roll out their dough at the same time was a bit crazy! =)


How To Make Great Tinfoil Dinners

My heart has been aching for the Sullenger Family during this hard time. It has been reminding me to cherish each moment.

We have been having a lot of fun lately experimenting with tinfoil dinners and trying all sorts of variations. They are so easy to put together and pretty much anything tastes great once cooked. Here are a few of our favorites:

The Basic

The basic tinfoil dinner is fool proof and is a great starter for any tinfoil meal. You can pretty much add anything and it will taste great! This is my husband’s favorite.

What You Need:

  • 1 serving meat
  • 2 cups veggies
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Oil
  • (Optional) Some sort of sauce: Creme of chicken/mushroom, BBQ sauce, or just a bit of Oil (we like Olive Oil) or anything else you want to try


Step 1: Cut a piece of tinfoil about 15 -18 inches long. Lay it out shiny side up. If the shiny side is down, it will NOT cook- the shiny side will reflect the heat away.

Step 2: Spray or spread a little oil on the tinfoil. Add your meat and veggies. Salt and pepper to taste.

Step 3: Wrap up the tinfoil by pinching the two long edges together and rolling down and then rolling the ends together in.

Step 4: Wrap with second piece of tinfoil (shiny side up!)

Cajun Rice
This one is soooo yummy! I was pleasantly surprised!
What You Need:
  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 1/2 cup salsa
  • 1 serving meat – Sausage or polish hot dog are great!
Step 1: Spray or spread a little oil on a 15-18 inch piece of tinfoil (shiny side up).
Step 2:  Place the rice on the tinfoil and create a little “nest” with a hole in the middle.
Step 3: Add cut up meat.

Step 4: Separately ix salsa and black beans together and pour on top of meat.
Step 5: Wrap the tinfoil up and re wrap a second time. Cook for 10 – 20 minutes until heated.
Chicken Stir-fry
This is also a really good meal and it has more veggies which make it feel healthier!
What You Need:
  • 3/4-1 cup cooked cups rice
  • 4 T Teriyaki Sauce (or Soy Sauce)
  • 4 T water
  • 1 T sugar
  • about 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • about 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 – 1 1/2 cups  vegetables
  • 1 serving bite sized pieces of chicken
  • Tinfoil
  • Large plastic container or 1 gallon sealable bag
Step 1: Prepare 2 cut pieces of tinfoil (shiny side up!). Add spray or spread the top one with oil. You will want the 2nd one ready to go once you fold the 1st one up at the end of the recipe. Have your container or sealable bag nearby, as well.
Step 2: Combine Teriyaki sauce, water sugar, garlic powder and 1/4 tsp pepper in a separate bowl and marinade the chicken for 10-15 minutes. Chicken can be raw or cooked (leftovers work great!)
Step 3: Add cooked rice and form a nest.
Step 4: Remove chicken from marinade and add the chicken inside the “nest”. It helps if you cook the chicken a little until it is just a little pink, if it is not already, prior to adding it to the rice. It will cook faster this way. Put the marinade to the side for a minute.
Step 5: Add vegetables. I used 1 cup frozen and 1/2 cup zucchini.
Step 6: Fold 2 of the sides up, leaving the 3rd side open. Try to fold the second piece around the first on 2 sides as much as possible leaving the same side open. Pour the leftover marinade inside and wrap up. It will most likely leak, so place it in the sealable bag or container if you are preparing these ahead of time.
Helpful Tips:
  • It helps cook the dinner faster if you cook the meat and potatoes a little before adding to tinfoil.
  • Softer/more sensitive vegetables like green peppers, peas, etc. place in the middle of the meal (not near the tinfoil) to prevent burning
  • If you have the long 18 inch heavy duty tinfoil, it will be a lot easier. But I have used the smaller and very weak kind and it worked fine. I had to wrap one or two meals a 3 times, but the food still turned out great!
  • Prevent the potatoes from burning by covering them in a little oil. The easiest way to do this is to put them in a container with a little oil and shake them up.  
I remove them from the excess oil before adding them to the rest of the meal on the tinfoil.


Puppy Chow Recipe

This recipe has been a favorite in my family since I was a little girl. You have probably had it before, but know it as another name. I like this recipe because it does not have any extra butter or oil to add like a lot of other Puppy Chow recipes do and it is very simple. A great recipe for little helpers to do.

What You Need:

  • 4-6 cups Chex or Crispix cereal (generic is great)
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • Powdered Sugar
  • 1 large bowl
  • A small pot or a microwave safe bowl
  • Long wooden or plastic spoon


Step 1:  Pour 4 cups of cereal into a large bowl. I buy whatever cereal is the cheapest, which is usually the generic Chex and I will buy one box rice cereal and one box corn to use for this recipe.

Step 2:  Combine peanut butter and chocolate chips. Heat until just melted. I usually use the microwave and stir it every 20-30 seconds. It usually takes no more than 1.5 minutes.

Step 3:  Pour melted chocolate peanut butter into the large bowl over the cereal a little at a time stirring it into the cereal. Try to cover all the cereal with chocolate, so keep mixing. If you need to, add more cereal. How much cereal you add depends on how chocolate coated you want each peace to be. If you use all 6 cups your cereal may be a bit dry.

Step 4: Add the powdered sugar. Stir it in until everything is covered. If you are like my little sister you want a TON of powdered sugar!

Step 5: Enjoy!


  • Once you have mixed in the melted chocolate peanut butter put the mixture in a gallon sized sealable bag. Then add the powdered sugar. Seal the bag and shake. This can be less messy and it keeps the cereal from breaking up like it can when you are stirring with a spoon.
  • Divide up melted chocolate peanut butter mix into smaller sealable bags, so each of your helpers can shake up their own powdered sugar.

A funny story:… a few years ago I made some of this and grabbed a handful to take with us to the playground. A couple of friends heard me calling it Puppy Chow and giving it to my son. They finally came up and asked me what I was eating. When I told them I got the funniest look from both of them. So I opened up the paper towel I was holding to show them and told them how I made it. They both started laughing. They thought I was giving dog food to my son because they always called it something else growing up!

Easy Ice Cream Cake Recipe

(Don’t forget to send in your Summer Fun Challenge entries.
It doesn’t take long and it is a bunch of fun! And remember, it can be super simple. Just do something with “sticks” and then follow the entry instructions here.)

This ice cream cake is a hit everywhere it goes and best of all it is super easy to make and does not need to sit long to be ready.  I love ice cream cakes and this one feels like I am cheating when I am making it, but it tastes just as good as store bought or any other homemade one from scratch I have made! It is great for those times when you need a cake ASAP or just a fun treat to share. And best of all, it is easy enough that  your children can help make it with little or no mess!

What You Need:

  • 2 boxes ice cream sandwiches
  • 1 large container whipped cream
  • 1 bottle Magic Shell

**See variations at the bottom of this post for alternatives


Step 1: Set out a 9 x13 pan and unwrap your sandwiches. This part is definitely for the kids and it does not matter if they break the ice cream bars by accident!

Step 2: Lay 1 box of the sandwiches in the pan. All 12 do fit; you just have to squeeze them tight together in the pan. There is a brand of ice cream sandwiches called Sammies that are bigger and you only use 6 of those per layer.

If you look closely, you can see that we had to break a bar in half to make it all fit. (upper right corner)

Step 3: Cover first layer in whipped cream

Step 4: Repeat Steps 2 and 3 for the second layer. Usually there is a slight gap around the top edge because of the way the pan is made. That is okay! It makes it easier to take out of the pan.

Step 5: Cover the top with Magic Shell…as much or as little as you want. This picture below is almost a full bottle, but less looks good, too.

Step 6: Let it set in freezer until you are ready to eat. You do not have to set it long if you are in a rush, just a few minutes will do.

Step 7: ENJOY!!! As you can see it was a big hit. Everyone loved it!



  • Try a different flavor of ice cream bar. At my store there was vanilla, banana, Neapolitan and peanut butter. We made this one with one layer PB and one layer vanilla.
  • Instead of making it in a pan, make it on a jelly roll or cookie sheet. Make sure you buy a little extra whipped cream so you can cover the sides completely.
  • There are a bunch of new flavors of Magic Shell. Give another a try…I was tempted to grab the cupcake flavored one. Yum!
  • You can always add food coloring to your whipped cream to give the cake some color.

Have Fun!!!

Best Ever Banana Bread


(Don’t forget to check out the Summer Fun Challenge and Giveaway for June and I am still looking for Sponsors for July and August)

This is my family’s favorite banana bread recipe. It turn out great every time! I am always surprised at how fluffy it is compared to other banana breads. Another bonus is that it is so easy to make that even my 4 year old son can do it. I helped him make a few mini loaves to give his teachers as a end of the year thank you. He was so excited to give them something he made and he made sure he told them that!

What You Need:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 medium-large very ripe bananas (1 cup mashed)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • Bread pans
  • 3 bowls (or 2 bowls and a blender) – 1 of them large for mixing
*Preheat oven to 325º



**The trick to great banana bread is, the less stirring you do once you add the wet and dry ingredients together, the lighter and fluffier the bread will be!

Step 1: Add peeled bananas and sour cream together. I like to use the blender to do this, but you can mash them together in separate bowl, too. I also don’t wait for the frozen bananas to defrost completely before opening them. I find it less messy to set the bananas out for 20 minutes (or run under cool water for a few minutes) and then slice the banana peel a few times (the long way). The peel comes off nice and easy and the banana is still whole. Then I set the banana aside to finish thawing while I mix everything else.


Step 2: In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir together and set aside.


Step 3: In the large bowl cream the butter and gradually add the sugar. Add one egg at a time and beat well after adding each egg. Add the vanilla and mix.


Step 4: Add 1/3 dry mixture and 1/3 banana mixture to the large bowl. Mix well, but not too much! (Remember the trick to great banana bread. See the beginning of instructions above). Add half of the remaining dry mixture and 1/2 of the remaining banana mixture. Mix well, again. Then add the last of the dry and banana mixture and mix. If using the mixer, I do quick starts to the mixer until I do not see any more dry mixture. It should mix pretty easy.

Yes, and we must not forget about the tasting! This is his favorite part!


Step 5: Pour batter into well greased bread pans. Add mix-ins, if wanted and stir them in lightly. We love to bake them in mini loaf pans for gifting and our favorite mix-ins are chocolate chips and/or craisins.


Step 6: Bake in oven. For large bread pans around 70-75 minutes (or until you can stick a fork in it and it comes out clean). For mini bread pans, it will be around 50-55 minutes depending on your oven (or until the fork trick!). Times may vary with ovens and elevation. Once removed from oven, let bread cool 20 minutes before removing it from the pan. I find using a butter knife and going around the edge of the pan (between the bread and the pan), helps the bread come out all in one piece.




P.S. I know I’m missing a picture of the bread. I meant to take one, but I guess it never happened. I will have to snag one from the next batch we make and add it later. So, sorry! But just think “yummy good!”

I found this recipe while at a dentist appointment and flipping through a Family Fun magazine. My dentist was so nice that he made a copy of the recipe for me. What a great find!

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