Coffee Shop Inspo

When we were galavanting around town enjoying some delish coffee, I had two delish concoctions that I NEEDED to try at home. I decided to put a NuNaturals spin on this, though honestly both required syrup and I only have NuNaturals syrup, so my tastebuds decided for me. πŸ™‚

Mint Julep- Houndstooth Coffee

As much as I love a coffee shot, I knew immediately whilst taking this that my version would not look as cute. First off, this Cerci Lannister goblet is EVERYTHING. Second, they clearly purchased mint in that level of Mario 3 where everything is gargantuan.

Now Houndstooth doesn’t make this recipe a mystery, they shared it online for the Kentucky Derby:


  • Generous dash simple syrup (10 grams) (I used NuNaturals vanilla syrup)
  • 2.5 ounces cold brew concentrate
  • 1.5 ounce club soda (I used Topo)
  • Top with crushed ice (I did not have crushed ice. So I used geometric ice shapes)

Garnish with agitated fresh mint. 

Now I believe my mint was already agitated because it knew it was Joe Pesci compared to the mint at Houndstooth, but for those new on the agitate mint scene, Imbibe Magazine has you covered:

A mint garnish is all about adding aroma to the final cocktail, so it’s important to know about the oil on the underside of the leaf. Ever seen a bartender slap mint in their hands before adding it to the drink? This movement is the quickest and easiest way to express those oils. β€œWe’re allowing the oils to release and make the general environment around the top of the drink great,” Voisey says.

I ordered this the last time I was living in Austin and I thought the barista was making this up when he slapped the mint in his hand. I was like “alright, bro. You do you.” Turns out he reads Imbibe Magazine, I guess…

Here’s my version:

I asked Jon to try it and he liked it so much that I made him one as well. I consider that a job well done. The only thing agitated in this house was the mint. Last agitation, joke. Promise.

Throwback Matcha Cooler- Manana

This drink was the special on the day we went to Manana (part of the South Congress Hotel). I took a picture of just the tea and it came out terribly. Luckily their Instagram had this picture and now I want that reusable straw.

The Throwback Matcha Cooler had:

  • Unsweetened matcha powder (in a water concentrate made in-house)
  • Lavender Syrup
  • Lemon Juice
  • Sparkling Water (they had their own on tap, pics below)

I asked for the ratios of this drink because it was freakin delightful. They said 3oz of the matcha concentrate, 1 oz of lemon juice, a splash of syrup, then the rest was sparkling water. I am not sure why it is a throwback. They had a version with Strawberry lemonade and I imagine some curmudgeonly hipster was all “boooo! play the classics!” so they included the throwback as an option.

Anyways, here is a picture of us enjoying this concoction:

Eerily, my nail polish is almost identical to the George Costanza, er hand model, for Manana.

I had a leg up on the drink lewk because they did not have the goblets and fresh mint like Houndstooth (but what they lacked in those areas they made up for with a TAP OF SPARKLING WATER THAT YOU COULD USE TO HAVE AS MUCH AS YOU WANTED). I want one in my house when I grow up. Here is my version of this tasty beverage:

I used the recipe above, but replaced the lavender syrup with NuNaturals vanilla syrup. Jon said this one was even better than the one we had at the coffee shop. This feels a bit unfair because I served it to him right after he worked out and any cold beverage post-workout tastes like heaven. Here’s a picture of my ingredients:

Since the baristas told me they put the water in last, so I poured the lemon juice and matcha over ice, then finished it with sparkling water. And I don’t know if you noticed, but I used a metal straw like their instagram account. Ballin.

Let me know if you try either of these! πŸ™‚


Watermelon Collagen Refresher

Hello, Friends!

It is HOT right now. And my favorite thing to eat in the summer when I am warm is watermelon. So I decided to make a refresher using NuNaturals Collagen! πŸ™‚

The ingredients are SO simple, this is barely a recipe. The only thing you need to remember to do is freeze some watermelon and banana.

First, I blended the watermelon and banana with a splash of coconut milk. I continued to add the coconut milk until it was a smooth almost daiquiri-like texture. Then I added the collagen and blended it a little more so it would be evenly incorporated. Enjoy!

Stay hydrated, dudes!

Cold Brew Taste Test (part 2)

How do we like our coffee in Texas summers? ICE COLD! Alright-alright-alright-alright… (I enjoy Outkast as much as iced coffee).

Today’s Iced Coffee Adventure was STRAIGHT UP cold brew. No flavor, no milk. But Naturally I had to spruce up the coffee (seen after our vote). We have four contenders:

Since these were SO similar (no milk or flavors to rank), we decided to just rank them from 1-4. This was the easiest way to separate them. And in true cold brew couple fashion, my fave was the only one Jon would not purchase again. πŸ™‚


  • Jon: 1st place, would buy again
  • Me: 3rd place, would drink if milk sub and stevia was added

Civil Goat

  • Jon: 4th place, would not buy again
  • Me: First place- hells yeah I’d drink this again.

(opposites attract, folks)

Giddy Up!

  • Jon: 3rd place, would buy again
  • Me: 2nd place, would buy/drink again
  • Kirkland

  • Jon: 2nd place, would buy again
  • Me: 4th place, would drink if milk sub and stevia was added
  • My issue with the Kirkland is just that it is SOOOOO strong. I always add milk and stevia to those. Well, I did. Jon hasn’t purchased them in a while. I think it was fun to put this “‘ol standard” with the new dawgs.

    When we ranked the coffees we split them to finish drinking. I was given the Giddy Up and Civil Goat remainders, which were used to make these iced coffee bevs:

    Blue Cowgirl

    I love a blue milk. This was done with spirulina and also some NuNaturals stevia. I whisked them together then poured over the leftover coffee and ice.

    Butters the G.O.A.T.

    This was also coconut milk, but I added some chai syrup and an adorbs pineapple slice because it looks so tropical in that fancy lil bebe coupe glass.

    Thanks for reading! FYI coffee fans: we will be sharing some local coffee shops in August.


    Fast App Friday Returns!

    When summer hits I have a simultaneous urge to eat LOTS of produce and LOTS of ice cream. Today, I am going to talk about produce.

    The fastest app ever is our friend the crudites.

    If you have veggies and hummus (or ranch or tadziki or any dip you love) then you have this app. You don’t need to cook anything… AND if you’re really feelin super chill you can buy pre-cut veggies. I generally cut my own because for some reason I feel like carrot sticks taste better when I peel and cut the carrots myself. Maybe it is just because they are from Farmhouse and the carrots just taste better anyways? A true mystery.

    There’s so many ways to serve this:

    Netflix Snackie

    This is the most chillaxed version because it is a little bebe party just for you! Throw some produce on a plate or in a tiny bowl, then put some hummus or other dip in the corner. You can also “elevate” this by putting the dip in the bottom and serving in aesthetically pleasing vessels. Which brings us to option 2…

    Fancy Mini Servings for Parties

    Remember when everyone was DELIGHTED that mini cupcakes were a thing? Everyone loves things when they are tiny. While charcuterie has been making the Instagram rounds big time, the pandemic invented jar-cuterie (or individual cups if you do not have a dozen little mason jars sitting around). I mean… these little cups were big during covid for obvious reasons.

    I am always nervous about double-dippers when there’s a veggie assortment and no plates or spoon for the dip. And while I loathe when I am pulling a George Costanza, I often am (as noted below):

    Double dipping is gross- full stop. I won’t with strangers or even family. I also will not share ice cream cones. Get your own, bro.

    These individual cups prevent double-dipping from being gross because the dip is in the bottom of your own cup! So fun and so cute and SO sanitary. πŸ™‚

    Veggie Board

    I would recommend having a little spoon and plates for serving these so the aforementioned double dip grossness does not occur. Speaking of George, if you do not see enough veggies on the menu of the restaurant you’re headed, just pack your own:

    That’s it! That’s the post. Fast app and fast post. Thanks for coming to my second round of:


    Rainbow Cheesecake Bars

    Hello, friends!

    I have made quite a few delights for Pride Month but wanted to make sure I ended the last week pride month with a NuNaturals recipe! This is a modified version of these cheesecake bars. I made them for Jon’s birthday and he enjoyed them immensely. I replaced the sugar with NuNaturals Monk Fruit 1:1 sweetener. This would have been keto, but I decided to use leftover mint girl scout cookies for the crust. πŸ™‚

    I pulsed the cookies in my food processor and added melted butter. Then I smushed it onto a parchment paper-lined square pan and baked it for 8 minutes at 350 degrees. The rest of the ingredients in the first picture made the filling (I only used the egg whites in this recipe and used the yolks for brunch later).

    I have seen rainbow cheesecakes where there’s a layer of white cheesecake and then a layer of swirled rainbow cheesecake on top as a second layer. This recipe is lighter in part because they are cheesecake BARS, not a full cheesecake. So I did not use a white layer below and split all of the cheesecake batter into 6 cups to color.

    One trick to lifting cheesecake bars is to have parchment paper to pull up. I have seen people bake with metal clips on and I plan to eventually. I don’t have any so these adorable chip clips from my mom helped keep things in place while I added the colors. I have seen people do blobs and swirl them. I wanted to make the rainbow colors stripes, but not in ROYGBIV order (they are in order, but they don’t start with red. Which is pretty pink. I digress…). Then I used a knife to swirl the edges of the colors to make it sort of tie-dyed. I think it looked pretty dope:

    See that top piece of parchment that wants to fold in? It did while baking and ruined (what would have been) the perfect shot of the baked cheesecake. Here’s the full pic (followed by a cropped pic to soothe my ego):

    You know what fixes blemishes like that? Whipped cream. And I just happened to have some leftover whipping cream in the fridge. I painted the inside of a pastry bag with rainbow colors then filled it with the whipped cream. Boom. Magic.

    I should also add that this painting technique for piping also is shown off in this Instagram reel when I made these adorbs meringues. I used this recipe and once again subbed sugar for NuNaturals Monk Fruit 1:1 sweetener. You might say this post is full of monk fruit, food coloring, and merriment.

    Happy Pride, y’all! I hope you enjoyed these recipes. I also wanted to share a little highlight of some of the treats I made this month (I didn’t share the Transgender pride flag cookies because I assembled them wrong for the picture. I did make sure to use the flag colors in the unicorns seen on the bottom left though):

    As NuNaturals often inquires, Isn’t Life Sweet?


    Fast App Friday

    I am not going to make Fast App Friday a weekly thing because I have commitment issues, but I DO want to share a fast app or snack when I find one (or in this case make one up in my mind palace).

    I enjoy a cheese board, but I also do not love making a lot of cheese decisions. Like, give me a plate for one with exactly as much charcuterie as I need or I am overwhelmed. And by the end, I am also overeating.

    I really enjoy the “jarcruterie” trend where mini jars were used in an effort to serve people in covid times. I made something similar over the holidays:

    I also made a mini-board during the holidays which covered my need for adorable meats and cheeses in a larger snack (aka mini meal type of way):

    I think that these types of apps are super fun and a great way to play with textures. One texture I am digging right now is granola because Hunt & Gather Foods sent me several to try and I just keep topping all the dang foods with it! πŸ™‚ I was working on some chutney recipes for Me and Jon to taste test (that intel arrives Monday). I had some blueberry goat cheese for that blog post and thought “this flavor combo would be awesome with Busy Bee granola.”

    So, I took 5 crackers out of the freezer (I am frugal like an adorable grandma who lived through the depression- you can store these in the freezer). Then I smeared some spicy pepper jelly on them and topped that with some blueberry-vanilla goat cheese. Then I topped these aborbs treats with granola and drizzled some local honey on top. Behold!

    The textures, salty sweet elements, crunch from the cracker, softness of the cheese…. good lord. These were amazing. And I am OBSESSED with how beautiful the busy bee granola is with the flowers in the mix. Look at the pops of blue! πŸ™‚

    Jon and I both really enjoyed these, even though they weren’t an official part of the chutney taste test. Jon wants to try this combo on a toasted crostini next because I’ve created a monster. Ha!

    No oven needed. No heat at all (other than that amazing pepper jelly). Deliciousness with minimum assembly required. Fast App Friday, y’all.

    (drops mic)


    The easiest, yet somehow fancy, fruit salad!

    I don’t know about you, but fruit during hot summer days makes me SO happy. I feel like I am being uber healthy and I also find cold fruit refreshing. I wanted to elevate the summer fruit experience with a few ingredients that you may already have on hand:

    I chopped up the fruit I had in the fridge (mango, cantaloupe, strawberries) and added grapes. Then I mixed 2 tbsp of lime juice and 1 tbsp NuNaturals Chai Syrup. This was poured over the fruit and mixed through. After a few moments, I added chopped fresh mint leaves and mixed again.

    The final product was DELIGHTFUL. I think it would also be good with blueberries, pineapple, watermelon, etc. I REALLY like mango with spice though. So get some of that if you can. πŸ™‚

    We ended up eating this fruit salad over some cool whip with our brunch yesterday. I am going to enjoy the remaining fruit salad (I cannot believe we left any tbh) in between teaching summer classes today. Maybe I’ll put on some shades and pretend I am on a mini vacay…



    Hello, friends!

    We decided to do a “staycation” on Memorial Day weekend because we will be traveling later this summer and wanted the weekend to be chill. We did, However, dress in matching gear to suggest we were tourists in Austin:

    We decided to spend Sunday chillin at Zilker, so naturally I had a chance to pack a lunch! I enjoy what are called “zoo lunches.” These are lunches people bring to eat at the zoo- usually a sammie and a side with no utensils required. I am obsessed with these low carb wraps, but Jon is less enthused, so I added mayo because that fixes everything.

    If you’re vegetarian, I suggest a wrap with hummus, giardiniera, some crunchy veggies, and leafy greens. My man needs more calories than I do on account of lifting heavy things all the time, so you can see his sammy and meal on the top and mine on the bottom. He also received more lunchable-type meats/cheeses. Lucky dude. πŸ™‚

    We have a pretty good system packing for Zilker now. We fill a backpack with a tarp blanket (in case it is wet), sunscreen, hand sanitizer, and bug spray. Then we pack the lunches in a cooler bag with frozen waters (that act as ice packs until they become water again). Brilliant!

    It was a super fun weekend! We also went to a new coffee shop, went to the Domain, and watched movies. Fun times were mos def had. Now I begin teaching my summer semester while also planning for my next Bake Sale, which will benefit the Trevor Project. Pride Month is the prettiest bake good month because rainbows are life.

    Stay tuned for a post on those treats. None of the pictures here are what I am mailing, but damn if they aren’t adorable.


    The Easiest Applesauce EVER.

    I don’t know if y’all had a Boston Market where you grew up, but we did. And my FAVORITE thing (other than the cornbread) was their applesauce. It was chunky and warm and amazing. When I purchased applesauce from the store it was cinnamon applesauce from Motts, but not chunky and always eaten cold.

    I bought an Instant Pot a while back and decided to use it to make applesauce. I am NEVER looking back, sorry Mott family. This stuff was SO easy and SO delish!

    Here’s my IKEA step by step process:

    There’s no formal recipe. This is how I do it:

    1. Peel apples and cut into chunks
    2. Add cinnamon (circle 1)
    3. Add NuNaturals Vanilla Syrup (circle 2)
    4. Add a splash of lemon juice and some water
    5. Stir together so apples are evenly covered (circle 3)
    6. Steam for 20 mins, release instant pot pressure
    7. Mash any huge chunks
    8. Eat warm if possible. Because OMG.

    You can also use brown sugar in this or a splash of bourbon if you imbibe. It is a delightful treat no matter how you make it.

    So, I guess you could say I’m…. Austin Market. Eh? Eh?


    Mini Carrot Cakes!

    I wanted to make a carrot cake for Easter because I’m basic. I LOVE a carrot cake. However, holiday weekends mean a LOT of cheer so I wanted a lightened up version. Additionally, there are only two people in this house and ONE* does not like carrot cake. So I had to make some improvisations.

    I started with this recipe, meant for two tiny ramekin carrot cakes. Then, like most commenters on ANY recipe (including how to boil water), I made some changes. πŸ™‚

    First, I subbed the spices for NuNaturals Chai syrup. Then I subbed the oil for unsweetened applesauce. I used less brown sugar than the recipe called for- and if I am being completely honest I think a pinch of it would be good.

    Next, I omitted the cream cheese frosting entirely. I know (clutches pearls). Instead, I boiled some rainbow carrot ribbons in a mixture of water and NuNaturals vanilla syrup. After they simmered for a bit I put them on a silicon baking mat and crisped them in the oven at 350 degrees for 8 minutes (whilst the cakes baked). Here’s the process:

    When it came time to plate the recipe I was pretty overwhelmed. See… the ramekins that they were baked in are adorable serving dishes on their own… but they also come out of those ramekins nicely. So they COULD be on a little cake stand or in a bebe skillet. Choices are hard…

    I opted to eat mine in the skillet (pictured in the center). It was SO good!! I decided to offer a bite to my husband as a “maybe I’ll win him over” test. See, he isn’t a sweets person. He is MOS DEF not a carrot cake person. He is a cream cheese frosting person, but there was nary a cream cheese morsel to be found.


    *Remember the one person I asterisked above? That was me. Now there are two people who like carrot cake because Homeboy wanted to SPLIT IT. He liked it! My husband is very honest and does not eat things he doesn’t like, especially baked goods. So, he ate half from the skillet plate and I ate the other half on the little cake stand.

    You heard it here first, folks: this recipe will turn carrot cake haters into carrot cake eating machines (or diplomatic “let’s go halvsies” dudes). Here’s my modified recipe:

    Yay! Let me know if you try it. So easy AND delish!