5 St. Patrick’s Day Snacks That Will Leave You Feeling Lucky!

St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner! The day of green beer, good luck, and everyone is Irish! I am going to help you make your St. Patrick’s day a little tastier with these fun, festive, and delicious treats.

Disclaimer: these are what the treats REALLY look like. I’m not a professional Pinterester so they may not be perfect, but that gives you a good idea of what they will realistically look like!

 

ONE: Little Lucky Bars (gluten & dairy free option)

Just like your traditional Rice Krispies Treats but with Lucky Charms.

IMG_2288What you will need:
– 8 cups of Lucky Charms
– 1 bag of mini marshmallows
– 1 tsp. of vanilla (optional – I like to add it)
– 3 tbs. of butter (I use vegan to avoid dairy)
– Green food coloring

 
Instructions:
1. Melt butter in large sized pot on stove
2. Add full bag of marshmallows to IMG_2304melted butter. Continue to stir         consistently to avoid burning the marshmallows until fully melted.
3. Add vanilla and about 5 drops of green food coloring and mix evenly.
4. Remove marshmallow mixture from heat and mix in 8 cups of Lucky Charms.
5. Once cereal is mixed in pour the mixture into a grease 8×12 inch cake pan and press down the top lightly until flat.
6. Let the mixture cool, then cut and serve!

TWO: Luck of the Irish Mix! (gluten-free) 

Have you had Puppy Chow or Muddy Buddies? Make those ordinary treats a little more lucky with this Luck of the Irish Mix recipe!

IMG_2287What you will need:
– 1 bag of white chocolate chips
– 8 cups Chex cereal
– ½ cup peanut butter
– 1 tsp. of vanilla
– ¼ cup of butter
– 1 ½ cups of powdered sugar
– Green candies – I chose mint M&M’s
– Green food coloring

 

 

Instructions:
1. Combine chocolate chips, butter, and peanut butter in a medium microwavable bowl.IMG_2303
2. Microwave to melt the contents, stirring frequently to avoid burning mixture.
3. Add green food coloring and vanilla
4. Place Chex cereal in a large bowl and add melted mixture.
5. Stir thoroughly to make sure all pieces are coated
6. Add powdered sugar and mix well. This works best if you have a lid for your bowl so you can shake it.
7. Let the mixture cool.
8. Add sprinkles, M&M, Lucky Charms, or any other green candies!

THREE:  Irish Jell-O Shots (for the adults)

It’s not St. Patrick’s day without at least a little bit of alcohol. You can solve that problem with these Jell-O shots that are the colors of Ireland’s flag.

What you will need:IMG_2290
– 1 box of orange Jell-O
– 1 box of lime Jell-O
– 4 packets of unflavored gelatin
– 7 oz of sweet and condensed milk
– 1 1/2 cups Vodka of your choice
– Whipped cream (optional)
– Plastic cups to make your Jell-O shots in. I like to use the cups with lids for easier storing.

 

Instructions:
1. Start with the box of lime Jell-O. Combine 1 cup of boiling water with contents of Jell-O packet. Stir until dissolvedIMG_2306.
2. Add ¾ cup of vodka and ¼ cup of cooled water
3. Fill 1/3 of shot glass with green Jell-O.
4. Place in fridge to set.
5. Combine contents of four packets of unflavored gelatin with 1 cup of boiling water, mix until dissolved.
6. Add 7oz of sweet and condensed milk to unflavored gelatin mixture.
7. Fill the next 1/3 of your shot glass.
8. Place in fridge to set.
9. Finally, with your box of orange Jell-O, combine 1 cup of boiling water with contents of Jell-O packet. Stir until dissolved
10. Add ¾ cup of vodka and ¼ cup of cooled water
11. Fill 1/3 of shot glass with green Jell-O.
12. Place in fridge to set.

FOUR: Leprechaun Hats – my personal favorite!

Every little leprechaun will love these special treats! Perfect for making with the kiddos.

IMG_2283

What you will need:
– 1 bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
– Circular cookies of your choice
– 1 bag of marshmallows
– Green frosting
– Yellow sprinkles

 

 

Instructions:IMG_2305
1. Melt chocolate chips in the microwave. Stirring every 30 seconds to avoid burning the chocolate.
2. Coat the cookies and marshmallows with semi-sweet chocolate chips.
3. Add a little extra drop of chocolate to the bottom of the marshmallow and stick on the center of the cookie.
4. Put in the fridge to set.
5. Use frosting to add a band where the marshmallow and cookie meet.
6. Use yellow sprinkles to make a buckle.
7. Ready to serve!

FIVE: Shamrock on a Stick  

Mix sweet and salty to create these decorative treats!

IMG_2284What you will need:
– 1 bag of white chocolate chips
– Pretzels
– Lollipop sticks
– Green food coloring
– Green sprinkles

 

 

 

Instructions:
1. Melt chocolate chips in the IMG_2313microwave. Stirring every 30 seconds to avoid burning the chocolate.
2. Add green food coloring to the chocolate.
3. Dip pretzels into the chocolate and set on greased baking sheet in groups of three to form a shamrock.
4. Place the lollipop stick in the center of the pretzels and add a small amount of extra chocolate
5. Add sprinkles if desired.
6. Let the shamrocks dry and then serve!

Enjoy your St. Patrick’s Day treats! There’s a recipe for everyone!

This blog was written by Anne Hagerty. 

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Chipping Away at Chips

Chips or ‘crisps’ as they are called in other countries, are perhaps the most satisfying crunchy snack in the known universe. The true beauty of these snacks lies in the immense variety that is available for purchase. One of the pillars I live my life on lies in the motto, “There is a chip out there for everyone”. Without further ado, let’s begin our journey and pay homage to the grand daddy of them all.

 

1. Lay’s Original

Let’s face it, Lay’s Originals is probably not you favorite all time chip, but I would wager it is definitely not your least favorite either. With the perfect blend of crunch, saltiness and Idaho potato starchiness, this classic go-to is high up on my list of best chips. Not only that, but these were essentially the very fist chips to be invented (by accident!!) In addition to being delicious by themselves, these golden beauties can be enjoyed with any number of dips, or loaded inside your favorite club sandwich.

2. Doritos Nacho Cheese 

Sticking with the theme of ‘classics’, you can’t get much more classic than the OG Doritos Nacho Cheese. For millennials like myself, I remember little else from my childhood besides looking forward to tearing open my lunch to find a little bag of these beauties. Let’s face facts, depression, break ups, bad grades, getting fired; all of these symptoms can be cured by a handful of these potent corn-based chips. Eating them is only the first half of the adventure, sucking off the cheesy residue is what really gets my blood flowing!

3. Tortilla Chips

Tortilla chips (bland as they may be on their own) played an important part in their hay day. They represented a portable, corn-based baked snack that could be taken on long journeys. Invented by the Hopi people of New Mexico and Arizona hundreds of years ago, we continue the legacy by eating and innovating them to this very day. They come in assorted colors: blue, red, white and yellow. Eating them by themselves will prove a bland but noble endeavor. However, when combined with dips such as queso, salsa, guacamole or any number of alternatives, and you have something truly special on your hands.

4. Kettle Chips

If ‘crunch’ is what you are after in a chip, than look no further. Kettle chips are perhaps the crunchiest of the breed, due to the unique process of making them. Another attribute of kettle chips that most people find appealing is the “realness” of them (there are even rumors of organic kettle chips). Unlike some other types of snacks, kettle chips are actual slices of potato which have been fried and seasoned . If you are looking for a honest to goodness chip that will back a heck of a crunch, kettle has your back.

5. Pita Chips

They say not all chips are created equal, never have any truer words been spoken. These imposters masquerading as “chips” are nothing more than bits of concrete and gravel formed into little squares that will turn your teeth to dust due to their hardness. True chip lovers will have no problem steering clear of these abominations.

Healthy Snacks for the College Budget

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Is there even such a thing as a healthy snack that isn’t bland, actually satisfies hunger, and doesn’t break your almost laughable college budget? The answer is YES! As an experienced waster of time on Pinterest, I have tried to make just about every recipe I’ve posted to my “College Food” board, and as many other Pinterest frequenters know, absolutely nothing turns out the way it looks on a pin…perhaps one of the more frustrating things in life. I would like to take a few seconds to inform you all that the following five recipes do, in fact, turn out just as beautifully simple as they appear in the pictures and won’t make you feel as though you’ve lost an arm or leg. A true blessing indeed.

ATTENTION DORM LIFE: these recipes are entirely attainable with painless modifications. Try them, I dare you.

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Cranberry Almond Energy Bites

This recipe is protein and nutrient packed and can be stored in the fridge/freezer for a convenient breakfast or on the go snack. My favorite use for these little bliss balls is as a pre-workout pick-me-up or as a cure for the infamous “hangry” hour. (serves about 16)

Prep Time: 5 min   Cook Time: 10 min   Total Time: 15 min

  • Preheat oven to 350°F
  • 1 c. rolled oats
  • 1/3 c. almonds (or nut of choice), chopped
  • 1/3 c. shredded coconut
  • 1 Tbsp. ground flaxseed (optional)
  • 1/2 c. nut butter (peanut or almond are great)
  • 1/4 c. honey
  • 1/3 c. dried cranberries, roughly chopped

Instructions

  1. Bake oats, nuts, and coconut in oven for 5 minutes. Stir and let cool. (If you do not have an oven, this step can be skipped)
  2. In a mixing bowl microwave nut butter for 20-30 seconds, or until runny, and add the baked mixture, honey, cranberries, and flaxseed (if desired). Form 1.5-2″ balls and store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer. TIP: wet hands after every 3-4 balls to help formation.

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Tuna and Avocado Bowl

This is by far the least expensive and easiest recipe consisting of only two main ingredients. Depending on the portion size, this can be used as a great protein packed, low carb lunch or snack at any time of the day. The ease of this snack makes it one of the best for on the go meal prep.

Prep Time: 5 min   Cook Time: 2 min   Total Time: 7 min

  • 1 can light chunk Tuna in water
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 chopped stalk of celery
  • 1 Tbsp. light mayo
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Strain tuna of the water, chop avocado into bite sized cubes, and finely chop celery.
  2. Combine all ingredients into a tupperware or serving bowl and enjoy.

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Chickpea Kale Salad

This simple recipe is full of great and unexpected flavor. It is easy to package and take on the go and satisfies mid morning, afternoon, and late night hunger pangs. The chickpea kale salad is another snack that takes little to no time to toss together and the cost of the ingredients is very minimal. Plate it with a full lunch or pop open that tupperware for an on-the-go treat. This snack will never disappoint!

Prep Time: 7 min   Cook Time: 1 min   Total Time: 8 min

  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and strained
  • 3-4 leaves of kale, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped (optional)
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Combine chickpeas, kale, parsley and garlic in a mixing bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl combine lemon juice and olive oil and stir.
  3. Pour lemon juice and olive oil over the chickpea mixture and top with salt and pepper. Enjoy!

Screen Shot 2016-02-27 at 4.23.42 PM

Cucumber, Avocado and Feta Salad

Quite possibly my favorite recipe to have on hand at all times is this salad. Great for pairing with a main dish or just a spoonful from the fridge on your way out the door. This is a salad that refreshes any time of year and keeps those jeans fitting the way they were meant to fit.

Prep Time: 5 min   Cook Time: 2 min   Total Time: 7 min

  • 1 large cucumber
  • 3 large avocados
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1/3 c. crumbled feta
  • 1 Tbsp. finely chopped dill
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Quarter the cucumber and chop into bite sized pieces. Slice avocados into bite sized cubes and juice lemon.
  2. Combine cucumber, avocado, feta, dill, salt and pepper and lemon juice. Serve and enjoy.

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Spinach and Banana Smoothie

The simplicity of this smoothie makes it a no-brainer when in need of an in between meal snack. It is packed with greens, protein and potassium, making it the perfect filler. Store this smoothie in the fridge and shake it up when in need of an energy boost.

Prep Time: 3 min   Cook Time: 2 min   Total Time: 5 min

  • 1 c. almond milk
  • 3 handfuls of baby spinach
  • 1 Tbsp. peanut butter
  • 1 banana

Instructions

  1. Place ingredients in a personal sized or large blender and blend to desired consistency or until spinach chunks are not visible. Serve in a to-go cup or enjoy at home.

LET’S GET COOKIN!

Not only are these recipes affordable and quick, the modifications for personal preferences are endless. As a frequent sufferer of the “hangry”, I swear by these simple fixes and can say from experience that they actually look like their pictures.

DISCLAIMER: failure of recipe presentation that matches these images is probably due to user error 🙂

 

 

Montana Adventures

Montana Adventures

By Andrew Moreland

The blog that brings you all my favorite adventures that I’ve experienced in Montana. Below, you will find all the information that I’ve used and what I’ve done throughout my time here. With all these adventures that I have experienced have made Montana one of my favorite places on earth.

Here is a list of my favorite adventures that I have experienced in Montana                                  (Scroll down to find more information about them)

Hiking & Backpacking

Rock Climbing (Indoor & Outdoor)

Whitewater Kayaking

Skiing & Snowboarding

Mountain Biking

Hot Springs 

Hiking and Backpacking

One of the best ways to experience this beautiful state is by hiking in the great outdoors. There are so many amazing places to explore including my all-time favorite, Glacier National Park. This national park is located in the north-western part of the state and it extends up into Canada. I’ve traveled to Glacier many of times and every journey has been more beautiful than the last.

Here is the website where you can find a ton of information if you’re interested in taking a trip up there any time soon.

Glacier National Park

 

Rock Climbing (Indoor)

Freestone Climbing gym is the best climbing gym in Missoula.  I love going there after my classes to free my mind with some climbing. It’s got awesome people and enough routes that will keep you coming back for more day after day.

Here is their website, go check them out if you like to climb!

Freestone Climbing Website

Rock Climbing (Outdoor)

Around Missoula there is a bunch of awesome areas to climb, go grab some buddies and start sending! Summer and fall days are the best to go out and explore these beautiful areas.

Here is the website with more information about the incredible outdoor rock climbing located close to Missoula!

Rock Climbing – Missoula, MT

Whitewater Kayaking

Montana has some of the best whitewater kayaking in the country. This is where I learned to kayak a few years ago and it will always hold a special place in my heart. One of my favorites, and usual after class run, is the Alberton Gorge section of the Clark Fork River. This is an amazing section of class III-IV rapids just 30 minutes west of Missoula. There is also the Blackfoot River that is just north of Missoula that offers great scenery and whitewater in the spring.

Here is where you can find more information on my favorite run as well as the current flows for this section.

Alberton Gorge – Clark Fork River

 

Skiing & Snowboarding

There is a reason so many people come to Montana for the mountains. THE SKIING IS UNREAL. From the local Snowbowl just 20 minutes north of Missoula to the massive Big Sky Resort a few hours away there is enough powder to go around. These are 2 of my favorite places to ski, yet there is so many more places out there that I’m excited to go explore.

Here is the website for Montana Snowbowl.

Montana Snowbowl

Here is the website for Big Sky.

Big Sky Resort

 

Mountain Biking

I just started mountain biking around Missoula last year, and I have no idea why I didn’t start a lot earlier! Not only is it a great leg workout but it is a blast to go out and explore the single tracks throughout the mountains. My favorite trials start from Sawmill Gulch just up the street from where I live in the Rattlesnake Recreational area.

Here is a great website with tons of information on trails just outside of Missoula!

Missoula Mountain Biking

 

Hot Springs

From cool summer nights to frigid winter days hot springs are a great choice for an adventure. There are awesome hot springs spread out all over Montana. My favorite one has to be the Boiling River hot springs in Yellowstone National Park. If you haven’t been there, it is a MUST if you live in, or are even passing through Montana.

Here is a website that has information about all the hot springs in Montana.

Montana Hot Springs

 

About the Author

I grew up loving the outdoors just outside of Portland, OR. While growing up my parents always took me and my two brothers out to go skiing and hiking along with many other adventures throughout my life, and because of this I began to have a deep appreciation for everything around me. This made it a very easy decision when I was comparing colleges all over the country. I have to say moving to Montana to attend the University here in Missoula, MT has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. I have only widened my appreciation for nature and all the things you can go do in this life. I can’t wait to go on more adventures in the future and I can only hope to see you out there!

Andrew Moreland