Special Edition: Recipes for the Big Game on Sunday!


Hello – Happy New Year & Happy Super Bowl Weekend!

First off, thank you to Bill Leff & Wendy Snyder for having me on their WGN show this morning…as always, it was so much fun!  With that said, I wanted to share with you the recipes that we talked about – all which will fit in well with your Super Bowl Sunday party plans.

  1. Buttermilk Brownies with Buttermilk Frosting
  2. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Dip
  3. Bacon, Beer and Potato Chip Bars (“Man Bars”) – The only thing I changed in this recipe was I substituted the peanut butter chips and chocolate chips for chopped up mini Reeses’ Peanut Butter Cups – not the really mini, but the small ones individually wrapped.
  4. Oreo Cookies and Cream Cheese Ball – The only thing I did differently in this recipe was to omit coating the ball in chocolate chips, but I am sure they would be delicious if you do add them!
  5. Spinach Dip (recipe below)


The Best Spinach Dip – if you follow these simple rules 🙂


Knorr Vegetable Mix – 1 pouch

16 oz Sour Cream – I tend to use Daisy, but am not too particular on the brand, however, it ALWAYS has to be full-fat for dips when I am entertaining.

1 cup of HELLMAN’S Mayonnaise – this brand is a must, and of course, full-fat!

3 green onions – I chop up the bottom half all the way through to a little bit of the green ends

1 can of Water Chestnuts, drained – I use Reese and have been using the “Diced” vs. “Sliced”, but really, either will do…just give them a rough chop before mixing them into your dip.

1 package of Frozen Chopped Spinach, thawed and drained– I am not too picky on brand name, however, I have found that some generic brands are not as good quality…so I tend to almost always use Green Giant, unless my grocery store is out of it.  Bird’s Eye is great too… and if at Mariano’s, their generic brand is good! Be sure to thaw and drain your spinach well and then give it a little bit of a rough chop before adding into the mix, because sometimes spinach can be stringy, and it doesn’t attach to your crackers as well!

1 Bakery Round Bread Loaf – I tend to always use either a sour dough or Italian round loaf.  However, my sister uses a sweet Hawaiian bread loaf, and it goes really well with the dip too… so whatever you prefer is fine! Mariano’s has a really soft and fresh sour dough… it’s currently my favorite!

This recipe is on the back of the Knorr Vegetable mix found in the soup isle of your grocery store.  I mix everything except the spinach, and let it sit in your fridge for a good hour.  Right before my guests arrive I add in the spinach to the dip mixture.  I hollow out my bread bowl and use that to serve the dip in and use the inner bread pieces along side your favorite crackers for serving with the dip.

I hope all of you have a great weekend and if you are celebrating, have fun and feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or need any additional dip recipe ideas…I’ve got lots!

Thank you so much for reading my blog… and GO BEARS!!!

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2018 will mark my 7th Season making treats and baking for the Chicago Bears. You might be thinking, how does one land that gig? Well, let me tell you. It’s riveting… My younger brother, Danny, works full-time for the Bears. Our entire family have been life-long Bears fans, btw. Back in the summer of 2012, he came to me and said, “Hey, we need someone to make treats for the team. Do you think you can do it? Because my boss said, Dan, you’ve got all those sisters, can’t one of them bake? So, I volunteered you.” My first response was, “YES, but I don’t know how to bake”. I mean, up until that point, the only things I remember ever baking were 1) S’mores Bars back in the 80’s off a recipe on the back of the Golden Grahams cereal box. Come to think of it now, I don’t even think those things went into the oven – so technically that wasn’t baking. And 2) Good old Nestle Toll House cookies – which NEVER turned out the same each time I baked them and it drove me nuts and got me to HATE baking for that very reason. I was always in love with cooking, though. I was the gal who threw dinner parties often and provided an obnoxious array of hors d’oeuvres and wine – that’s more my thing. Side note: I learned the hard way that baking and wine don’t mix. Ha! However, I was honored and excited to have been asked to step up to the plate for this little baking / treat-making gig, for THE CHICAGO BEARS, no less. So my answer was an enthusiastic, YES! I figured I still had a month before the first regular season game, which is when the “treat days” begin – every Thursday during the regular season (not preseason). So, I hit the streets in search of good recipes and then got to work test-baking in the kitchen for the rest of that summer. As I became more internet savvy, I started following lots of baking bloggers and watching video tutorials. I would go to parties and if I tasted something that I thought was exceptional, I would never hesitate to ask for the recipe. Baking for the Bears is always in the back of my mind when eating desserts. I now have an arsenal of treat recipes worthy of offering at a bake shop, if I do say so myself;) . I started getting requests for my pound cake, outside of Baking for the Bears, and my Double Chocolate Chip Sea Salt cookies have been quoted as “The best cookies in the world” by a well-known player, as well as friends, family and neighbors. One of the first things I did was perfect a cookie of my own that comes out pretty consistently crunchy on the outside but chewy on the inside. I no longer rely on the old Toll-House recipe. It’s the one thing I never get tired of baking. The guys get them every week. With that said, this season, I plan to blog my recipes each week, and share with you whatever it is I am making for the Bears. I’ll also give you tried & true feedback on what worked, what didn’t, and any fun comments that the players, staff, friends & co-workers might have regarding the treat of the week. My office colleagues love it when football season rolls around, because I typically find new recipes and test-bake on Sundays to bring in on Mondays for critical reviews. From there, I decide if they are Bear-worthy for Thursday Treat Days at Halas Hall. I hope you will check in periodically and enjoy my blog. I’m super excited for the 2018 Bears football season both on the field and in the kitchen! GO BEARS! This is gonna be a good season… I can feel it!

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