Category Archives: Food

Kyvan BBQ Review

kyvanBBQThe other day I was looking up what foods were well known around the country and realized that it wasn’t just in my head- the South really is famous for BBQ!  That being said, I will happily admit that I am a BBQ fanatic!  I love it way too much not to keep trying new brands when I come across them!  I swear there are at least 4 different types of BBQ sauce in my fridge!  Different sauces for different uses.  😀  Or perhaps my flavor of the day whenever I break them out!

We tried out Kyvan and have found a new perfect marinating BBQ sauce!  I made the traditional BBQ for our house- BBQ Chicken.  One of my favorite foods forever, so I know a good one when I see taste it!  Kyvan was delicious!  Soaked into the chicken and made the chicken amazingly good!

The sauce has a solid flavor and it was just amazing, until I cooked it on the chicken.  Then, it was unbelievable!  If you haven’t already, check it out, you won’t regret it!  I’m dying to try their other products!!!  I can’t wait to try it in some other dishes!  I think it would be amazing in baked beans!

Where to Find ‘Em






Originally posted 2013-11-04 00:01:57.

Monster Cereals Review

IMG_4741When my husband saw the Monster cereals sitting on the counter, he was really excited. He grabbed the boxes and started reading them saying they were the same as when he was growing up. It was cute seeing him turn into a kid again for a minute, he is usually so serious! To his great disappointment he had to wait before he could try them, as I hadn’t taken pics yet!  LOL.

Daily he came home and said “did you take your pics yet?” After I finally got them done, he skipped dinner and had cereal instead. I saw him take the first bite, closing his eyes and reliving some good memory. He said it tasted like being a kid again! Judging by the look on his face, that’s a good thing. I know when we run out he is going to send me on a hunt to find more.  The retro Monster cereals are available exclusively at Target and up until October 31st if you buy three boxes you can get a Monster Bash magazine (which includes Recipes, Tips and Tricks for planning the creepiest, scariest, spookiest, most fun Halloween ever!).  You can find more info for them here also.

He has a lactose allergy so he doesn’t get to eat dairy products anymore. After reading the ingredients, we were very happy that there wasn’t any lactose inside! Bonus! There aren’t many cereals that he loves that doesn’t have dairy and he loves his cereal!

As I’m sure you can infer, we are very pleased with the Monster cereals! They all taste just like the original versions tasted and were great! If you are looking for a little nostalgia or just a yummy cereal for the kids, you’ll enjoy this one!

Disclosure: The information and prize pack have been provided by General Mills through MyBlogSpark.  This was a sponsored post but all comments and opinions are my own.



Originally posted 2013-10-18 00:01:39.

Skinny Pop Review


We’re just a couple of weeks away from Halloween and there’s one thing that’s on everyone’s mind… treats! Welcome to the Treat Yourself Giveaway Hop, hosted by So Easy Being Green and Viva Veltoro! In this Hop, you’ll find lots of special treats to keep your entering giveaways until it’s time to go out and gather your own!

Be sure to hop around to all the giveaways in the Hop Linky below, and don’t forget the ultimate treat… the Treat Yourself Grand Prize!

We recently took Skinny Pop on a road trip.  From the South all the way to the East coast, well almost.  We were about 3 hours away from the edge of the country to the beginning of the ocean!  Would have loved to go all the way, but we were running low on energy and funds!  We did enjoy our Skinny Pop all the way!  And back!

We are fresh popcorn lovers around the Zoo.  So much so that, after much heavy hinting and a little shameless begging, we got our very own popcorn maker that looks like a smaller version of one that goes in a movie theater.  We tried for a big one, but those are super expensive!  Nothing beats a good movie and fresh popcorn.  You could have guessed that we are picky when it comes to our popcorn.

imageSkinny Pop has amazingly enough lived up to our love of movie theater popcorn without the butter yet held on to the flavor!  I don’t know how they did it, but they did!  The flavor is so amazingly close that I think if it were heated up we wouldn’t be able to tell much of a difference in a blind taste test, aside from the lack of greasiness.

As you can see by the Monkey’s faces, we loved the popcorn!  Skinny Pop is all natural, cholesterol free, zero trans fat,  free of dairy, peanut, tree nuts, gluten and GMO.  With all that healthiness, we can’t help but open up another bag!!!image

Find Them Here






Originally posted 2013-10-17 00:01:53.

Smart Ones Breakfast Review

20130915_083707I spent last week being a good girl, diet wise.  I was going to try out Smart Ones oatmeal and decided I may as well try them out for a week.  So for one full week, I had Smart Ones for breakfast and lunch then a sensible dinner.  I lost three pounds!  😀 Anyway, let me tell you about their oatmeal!






Smart Ones has come out with three breakfast oatmeals: Maple and brown sugar, apple and peach.  I’m not a fan of peaches, so I skipped that one but the other two are my new breakfast favorites!  The greatest thing is that they left me full til lunchtime without making me feel like I should climb back into bed!

At first, I was leary, as I didn’t really believe they would make me feel full but they did.  Being low calorie, there was no guilt in having them!  It took 3 minutes for me to fix a healthy breakfast to get my day started.  A great start if I do say so myself!  You should be able to find them in your local freezer section.  For $1.88 you have two breakfasts.  Great deal for a healthy and energetic start to dreary mornings!  Put them on your menu for this week!  You’ll find your new addiction!


This post was created in partnership with Smart Ones®. All opinions are my own.


Originally posted 2013-09-27 06:46:42.

Newmans Own Product Review


Newman’s Own are all organic and profits after taxes from the company go to various charities, dispensed by Newman’s Own Foundation.  Halloween is all about treats, so here are some great treats that we’ve really enjoyed for you!  They may not be products you can hand out the door, but you can definitely make some fabulous treats with them! We were able to try out many products, as you can see in the pic but there are four in particular that we really raved about! Organic Mints Really good!  Newman’s mints will astound you!  I let Monkey take some to school and the package came back empty a few days later!  Apparently they were a hit with the kids!  😀 Organic Licorice *Tip: Use black licorice to make spider legs!  ‘Glue’ them together with icing or chocolate and stick some on the top for a back.  😀  Or, you could use a round chocolate candy for the back! I have to say, we had a time saying ‘licorice’ after about 10 hours of driving…  I’m thinking road trip exhaustion was to blame…. Though I’m not a fan of licorice, it was apparently really good, as my girls ate two packages on our trip!  The licorice is in the straw shape so Monkey drank her soda with it.  She said it made her soda even better! Organic Cookies Oh man, oh man.  we seriously loved the heck out of the cookies!!!  The chocolate creme and creme filled Mint Chocolate Cookies were all amazing and Chief stole the entire package of Ginger ‘N Creme!  He refused to share, so I can only assume that they were amazing also!!! Expresso Dark Chocolate Alright, normally I can’t stand dark chocolate, but the Expresso Dark Chocolate was awesome!  It had a slightly different flavor than anything I’d tried in the past.  The expresso was represented subtly and gave it just the right flavor!!!  Trust me, you’ll want to check this one out!

Where to Find

Newman’s Own


Newman’s Organics Website

Newman’s Own Foundation



Originally posted 2013-09-02 00:01:56.

@SimplySnackin All Natural Jerky Review

Simply Snackin' All Natural Protein

My Thoughts

Simply Snackin‘ has a collection of gourmet, all natural jerky that I had the pleasure of checking out.  We had mixed reviews, some were loved some not so much.  Mr. Picky Eater wasn’t in love with most of them while Monkey ate them with a vengeance!

We tried the following:

  • Beef Sirloin with cranberries & blueberries
  • Beef Sirloin with apples & cherries
  • Teriyaki Beef Sirloin with pineapples
  • Chicken Breast with black bean salsa
  • Italian Chicken Breast with romano cheese
  • Teriyaki Chicken Breast with mangoes & papayas

Simply SnackinObviously, these aren’t your everyday jerky’s.  They have a different twist, which is pretty cool.  The flavors vary so much from the norm it’s hard to compare them to everyday, regular ole beef jerky!  If you want traditional, these aren’t for you.  As demonstrated by the Chief Zoo Keeper in the pic!  LOL.  However, if you are out for a gourmet flavor that will give your taste buds a new experience, then you are in for a treat!  I really wish I had a case of them to put out for holiday celebrations!  I think IMG_4220they would be amazing on a meat and cheese platter!

I haven’t picked my favorite yet.  The jury is still out.  I feel like this is a product that you either love or don’t.  Monkey loves it.  Chief doesn’t.  Of course, his taste buds seek a more traditional set of flavors and these are meant to burst out some new flavors!  That having been said, I think if you like trying new things and nontraditional flavors, this is for you!  If you try them, I’d love to hear your thoughts!


Bon Appetit!

From The Company

Gourmet Dried Meat Snacks

The idea of adding fruit to meat is no secret. Native Americans have practiced this tradition for hundreds of years. Pemmican, as it was named, provided Native Americans with a nutritious, high protein snack that could keep for a very long time.

Borrowing from that general idea, we’ve created six flavorful varieties of gourmet dried meat snacks made from lean, natural beef sirloin or chicken breast meat with up to 20% of the finest dried fruits, spices, and cheeses—with a touch of smoky hardwood and hickory chip roasted goodness. The result: an entirely new dimension of flavor and tender, moist texture that is the complete opposite of conventional jerky’s tough, dehydrated whole muscle cuts.

Pledge of Quality

Simply Snackin products are made using only the freshest and finest cuts of lean, natural beef sirloin or lean, natural chicken breast meat, combined with real fruits, spices and cheeses. You won’t find any added MSG, fillers or artificial anything.

No shortcuts are taken during production and packaging. Every artisan snack is individually crafted to ensure consistent form and weight, and produced in a clean, sanitary environment inspected daily by the USDA.

Finally, we don’t believe in using misleading marketing or exaggerated claims. What we say is exactly what we deliver.

We guarantee that we will give you exceptional products in every way,
and conduct ourselves with the utmost honesty and integrity.

Find Simply Snackin’



Google Plus


I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Originally posted 2013-08-01 09:51:56.

July Foodie Penpal Box

July Foodie PenpalPictured above are the contents of my July Foodie Box.  The lovely Mrs. Cheryl hooked us up this month!  She really outdid herself, I must say!   Awesome!  She also sent recipes to go along with the contents.  My favorite and seriously NEW FAVORITE recipe was the Coconut Lime Chicken Soup.  You can click the link to enjoy the recipe!

The Lean Green Bean

Here are the contents of the box.

Florida Oranges:  Being from FL, she had asked me if there was anything local I would like…  My answer of course was fresh squeezed orange juice!  LOL.  We all know that wouldn’t work, so she sent me fresh Florida oranges! 

Coconut Milk:  I’d never had it before, so it was cool to try!  It has a very meaty flavor and was the base for the Coconut Lime Chicken Soup.  I loved it!!!  If you aren’t a fan of coconut, you should still give it a try, it doesn’t really taste like coconut does…  I always thought if I got stranded on an island I’d starve because I’m not a fan of seafood and I don’t like coconut, but now I can sleep peacefully knowing I will at least have coconut milk!  😀

Dry Rice Noodles:  This one is a staple in our cabinet.  If you haven’t tried them, I seriously suggest it!  They taste a lot different.  Just a little tip: they have to be soaked for half an hour before you cook them!!!  Learned that the hard way!  LOL

Homemade Kimchi:  Kimchi is a fermented Korean side dish made out of vegetables.  It has a strong smell and strong flavor!  Very interesting!

Squid Brand Fish Sauce:  Also a staple in our cabinet!  We use it in a LOT of Asian dishes.

Raw and Unfiltered Florida Honey (Orange Blossom):  Let’s see….  Florida oranges and honey….  Certainly makes me want to hook up some chicken and dig in!!!  LOVE IT!!!  Amazing flavor!

Besan (Chick Peas Flour):  Hadn’t ever tried before!  The lovely Mrs. Cheryl included a recipe to use it with so I’m pretty pleased!  😀

All in all, this box is gonna be hard to top!!!  So far I’ve participated three months in the Foodie Penpal program and am excited and loving new products every month!  If you are interested, you should check it out!  Don’t worry, if you have allergies or things you just hate, you can let your penpal know so they’ll steer clear of those things!

If you enjoy trying new things, I seriously suggest trying it out!!!  You get to share your local favorites with someone and they share theirs with you!  It’s a win on both sides!!!


The following recipes were from Mrs. Cheryl in the box I got from her.  They are awesome so be sure and check them out!  😀

CocoLimeCKCoconut Lime Soup

Dragon Noodles Recipe

Dragon Noodles

As a little side note, I am LOVING the Orange Honey and if you are from Florida and would like to, I’d gladly accept more!!!  LOL.  But seriously…

Originally posted 2013-07-31 08:00:10.

NuGo Dark Chocolate Bars Review

NugoReviewAfter 27 years of cheese loving life, Chief Zoo Keeper suddenly developed an allergy to lactose.  Not just dairy, lactose.  Such fun in our little adventures!  So, we have spent the last couple of years adjusting to non-dairy and lactose free everything….  Well, mostly…  I’m not the greatest supporter, given that I still occasionally eat ice cream and cheese.  In my defense, so does he!  Of course, he has to pay for it and I don’t.  Anyway, we were glad to check out the NuGo Dark Chocolate bars because we are desperate for yummy non-dairy snacks!

Have you had a NuGo bar yet???

NuGo uses real dark chocolate made from coacoa beans to coat their bars, adding fabulous flavor and the wonderful health benefits of dark chocolate.  They also have a great selection of flavors and 3 diet specific types (in addition to their regular NuGo bars): Dark, Slim, and Free.  NuGo Dark utilizes the dark chocolate and are pictured above.  Bars contain around 200 or less calories each, so it’s a great pick me up snack for on the go, especially considering a normal Snickers bar has 296 calories and minimal health benefits!  The bars we tried were really good.  Even though we aren’t huge fans of dark chocolate, the rich flavor was hard to resist.

Company Description

 Our decadent NuGo Dark bars use real cacao dark chocolate to enrobe our bars. Cacao is a natural source of flavonol antioxidants which help neutralize free radicals and protect your body from cell damage while tasting delicious. Real Dark Chocolate uses all the properties of the cocoa bean, including natural chocolate and cocoa butter. Cocoa butter is important because it can reduce inflammation and lower blood pressure; vegetable fat alternatives used by other companies do not carry these health benefits. Our dark chocolate protein bars prove: Delicious has a dark side.

NuGo is the only company to make REAL Dark Chocolate coated protein bars for many lifestyles.


Read and sign the petition created on by NuGo Nutrition – Dark Chocolate Food Labeling: Tell the FDA to Stop the Deception!

NuGo bars are sold at stores in the US and Canada. Use the store locator.

Order sample packs with free shipping in the US.

Use this chart to find the NuGo bars to fit your lifestyle.


Originally posted 2013-07-01 00:22:00.

June Foodie Penpal: Thanks Paige!


Hello My Lovelies!  Okay, I have to admit, in my head that sounded very funny.  Hope it sounded somewhat funny to you…  Probably not….  I’m probably rambling…  I feel like I’m rambling….  Okay, I’m done.

Keep Reading!

Originally posted 2013-06-29 00:01:03.

Gallo Lea Pizza Kit

whole-wheat-pizzawhole-wheat-pizza Keep Reading!

Originally posted 2013-06-10 00:01:21.