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Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe [real butter + sugar]

I think I told you guys Dave begged for requested some plain ol’ chocolate chip cookies.  I usually experiment with semi-healthy versions of cookies, so apparently he was tired of all of the almond flour, nuts and oats. I tried once to do a basic M+M cookie and ended up with my Strawberry Jello M+M Cookies. Oops. What can I say…I like getting creative.

Honestly, it’s hard for me to make plain cookies. Which is funny because I used to make them all the time as a kid with my mom. She would make her Susie’s Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies and take them to work all the time. I even remember her having a baking competition with a coworker. I’m pretty sure Mama Sue is the reason I am obsessed with cookies.

classic chocolate chip cookies

I think I stopped making my mom’s chocolate chip cookies due to an incident in high school. My mom makes her cookies with Crisco. The Crisco gives it a certain color and texture; they always turn out very light in color (unless of course you burn them) chewy yet crisp. Well, I brought my mom’s famous chocolate chip cookies to school and was telling a friend that my mom used Crisco in them and she belted out “She uses LARD in COOKIES!!”

My face turned beat red as I tried to laugh along with everyone else, not knowing that Crisco isn’t even the same thing as lard. Lard = animal fat. Crisco = vegetable product.

Anyhow, that event embarrassed me so much I don’t think I touched the stuff for years. Gotta love high school, right?

classic chocolate chip cookies via @semihealthnut on

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[ 10 Valentine's Day Treats ] + Strawberry Jello M+M Cookies [ Recipe ]

This pretty pink cookie came about when Dave asked for a “plain chocolate chip cookie.”

valentine's day stack cookie

Let me explain.

I experiment a lot with baking (and cooking). Mostly with making things a little healthier but still tasting awesome. My latest kick has been a breakfast cookie (that is still in the works), and apparently the poor man just wanted a plain Jane, sugar-filled cookie.

He then told me his favorite cookie is an M+M cookie to which I flipped out because he told me about five years ago snickerdoodles were his favorite and I have made them countless times for him. (Including a lemon doodle and healthier lemon doodle versions.)

Okay. So I go to pinterest for a little inspiration (of course I can’t just make a semi-healthy M+M cookie recipe I’ve made before…that would be maddness…). I am a veritable cookie monster, so of course I have a Dessert [I Heart Cookies] board. I find a recipe pinned for Soft and Chewy M+M Cookies. It looked a little crazy. I mean it has butter, oil AND cream cheese all in the same cookie. I think,

“that’s okay, I have some strawberry Laughing Cow wedges…we could make this work. “

mixing up valentine's day cookies

Then we get to the store and of course Valentine’s Day M+Ms are on sale. So we add those red, white and pink goodies to the cart.

As I’m mixing up the dough and half watching Bridesmaids, I think,

“Well, the cookies might have a pink tint anyways…maybe I could add some jello to help with the color and encourage the strawberry taste.”

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S’mores Cookie Dough Pie

As I attempted to recreate this recipe tonight for the lovely gals visiting me for HLS (Healthy Living Summit) this weekend, I almost had a major catastrophe.

I was whipping up the delightful doughey goodness that tops the mallows and graham cracker crust of this delightful S’mores Cookie Dough Pie with a hand mixer when it was time to put in the chocolate chips. I no longer needed the hand mixer since I fold them in with a spatula, so I turned off the mixer, unplugged it and Spark! Pop!

s'mores cookie dough pie in a skillet

Um..what the heck was that?

I looked down to see black charred marks on the plug.

That can’t be good.

I went about my business, portioning off some of the dough for later (to eat later, to be more specific–that’s normal, right?). I opened the fridge to put my little stash of dough away.

Oh crap.

The light on the fridge was out and the usual hum of my wonderful stainless steel cooling contraption was non-existant. It was 6:30pm, after the apartment office closes, so I would have to contact the “emergency” maintenance team. I’m sorry, but in my mind the fridge/freezer not working is an emergency.

I frantically dialed the number, telling the woman on the other end of my dilema. When I asked how long it would be until someone could get back to me she gave the usual reply, “I’m sorry, I don’t know how long it will be.”


Did I mention I had just gone grocery shopping that day? Like a big shopping trip. One that I went on when I was hungry after a day on my feet and had to make three trips back to the car (the fourth one is still to come). The fridge and freezer were stocked full of glorious eats and I feared I’d have to deal with sad spoiled food in the morning. I had tears in my tired eyes just thinking about it.

Fortunately I have Dave. I alerted him via text to call me ASAP. This was serious.

Then he told me it was probably just a fuse. A fuse! (Duh Amanda.)

Every time I’ve dealt with a blown fuse in every other apartment (and even a house), EVERYTHING shuts off. It has always been very apparent I did something wrong and I would apologize to my appliances and sulk off to the fuse box to redeem myself. Since only the fridge was affected…I don’t know. I just didn’t think to do the simplest thing.

All I had to do was to find the switch that wasn’t lined up properly, flip it off and back on again.

What I want to know is, why the heck didn’t the lady at the phone tell me that…?

Anyhow, this deliciocity is getting baked up again! I don’t think my friends will mind if I taste-test it, right? I mean who knows what the crazy hand-mixer did to the poor chocolate chip cookie dough??

s'mores cookie dough pie in a skillet slice

S’mores Cookie Dough Pie

by Amanda @ Diary of a Semi-Health Nut
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients (12-15 slices)


    • I used a pre-made 9 inch graham cracker crust.


    • I used jumbo marshmallows cut in half, sticky side down. Fill up the bottom layer of the graham cracker crust.

    Cookie Dough Topping

    • 3/4 cup butter (room temperature or melted slightly)
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • 1 tsp almond extract
    • 1 + 1/2 cup all purpose flour
    • 1 tsp baking powder
    • 1 tsp sea salt
    • 8-10 oz of chocolate chips (I used semi-sweet)
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

    Mix together dough:

    Cream together butter and sugars. Add eggs. Add vanilla and almond extract.
    In a separate bowl, sift dry ingredients (aside from M&Ms) together.
    Add dry ingredients slowly (I usually do it in 3 parts to let the wet ingredients absorb the dry properly).
    With a spoon, mix in the chocolate candies.
    Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.


    The graham cracker crust I got fit perfectly into my skillet, so I used that as a baking vessel.
    Line crust with marshmallows (cut in half) sticky side down.
    Pour dough over top and smooth out with a spatula. It might take a little work and probably won’t look perfect, but that’s okay!


    Bake for 25-30 minutes or until cookie dough is brown. Be sure to watch it towards the end in case some marshmallow tries to sneak out down the sides!
    Powered by Recipage
    s'mores cookie dough pie in a skillet

    As I’ve stated many times (here and on Instagram), this was an inspiration from Becky! She made S’mores Cookie Dough Bars for her going away shindig (she lived in the twin cities the first two months I did and then moved..sad day) and I could not get them out of my head after I had them (for breakfast every day for a week). I even tried to replicate the cookie dough part which actually resulted in my M+M Butter Cookie Bars.  

    Can you say sweet tooth?

    PS Please check out my raffle going on to benefit Girls on the Run! I appreciate any and all support!!

    *~Amanda aka Semi-Health Nut~*

    Have you ever blown a fuse? (Literally or figuratively.)
    Have you ever had a meal or dessert that you could not get out of your head?

    I love making new friends!  Feel free to comment below, or connect with me via Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or e-mail: semihealthnut AT yahoo DOT com.  You can also follow posts via e-mail , Bloglovin, Networked Blogs, or my blog feed. Thank you so much for reading and God bless! :)

    {WIAW #71} Keep on Keeping On

    Hello Friends!

    I am officially looking for jobs in the Twin Cities. 

    The original plan was to start school at the university here in January, which meant re-taking that awful Chemistry II class in Nebraska for the next five weeks (one of those intense Monday through Friday, three labs a week, homework daily, a test each week type of class), so I wasn’t going to be able to work until late August.

    Yep, this is how I look for jobs.   (4th of July on the Stone Arch bridge)

    Due to the lovely issue of money and trying to be smart about finances…plans have changed.  The summer class is about twice as expensive as it would be to take during the year PLUS summer financial aid is scarce and I would have to pay out of pocket over a grand for one awful class.  Without a job.

    I would also have to pay out-of-state tuition here since I won’t qualify as a resident until next June.  It also turns out that once you start at a school as an out-of-state student…that is what you are classified as for the rest of your schooling at that institution.  Great.

    This here 26 year old gal will have to wait even LONGER to get her bachelor’s degree.  I know I have an associate’s degree, and I am grateful for that, but in this educated nation, that doesn’t seem like a lot.

    Daddio, me and Grandma Rose

    Feeling like a bit of a failure when I told my mom about my new plans, she told me she was 32 when she got her first degree!  She got her degree while working full-time and having three kids to boot!

    She also went back to school (with four kids this time in her fourties) after she got laid off from a job she liked whole a lot, to become a nurse…a job that she was quite frankly put on this earth to do.  No joke.

    She works in an area where many patients pass away and she just makes those patients and their family members feel comfortable and loved.  She receives letters and phone calls from families who are so grateful that SHE was the nurse there.  I am so happy that she is happy with what she is doing.  She told me it doesn’t even feel like work some nights!

    Don’t mind Rachey’s crazy face.  She likes to ruin perfectly adorable pictures.

    I do love my plans and I definitely hate it when they have to change…but this could be okay.  I can learn from my wonderful mother that things happen for a reason.  And even if things happen for no reason, I could still learn from my mom to keep on keeping on!

    I haven’t had any real experience in the health/wellness/fitness arena, so this is my chance to focus on that!  I have some ideas and new plans that I’m excited about, so things are looking up!

    So you say you came here to see my eats and not hear me drone on about my life?  
    That WIAW (What I Ate Wednesday) in the title led you to believe there would be food in this post?  I suppose I could add some of that in here after my long tangent!

    {Breakfast}  Peanut butter toast (of course!) with sunflower nuts and cinnamon sugar if I need an extra kick in the morning.

    {Snacky Meals}  I am a tiny bit obsessed with Wholly Guacamole and Beanitos. 

    {Dinners} I’m having fun making dinners for not only me but for Dave as well!  Meals just taste better when you get to eat them with loved ones!

    {Drinks} I got creative one night (probably when Dave was working and I couldn’t sleep) and decided to make some funky icecubes with frozen fruit and flavored water.  They make keeping hydrated fun AND satisfy my fizzy craving so I’ve been drinking less diet dew!  (shocking, I know)

    {Dessert}  Another mishap I had recently was making a skillet cookie.  I was SO excited to make it!  I found a recipe on Martha Stewart since the one I had pinned a year ago (on my I Heart Cookies board) no longer had an accessible recipe, but of course I had to change a few things.  The changes resulted in a very salty, crunchy texture that I was NOT expecting. 

    After taking a bite, Dave agreed that they were very salty, crumbly and had too many nuts, BUT he would still be eating them.  Why?  Because although they weren’t what we expected..they still tasted good!  The whole batch was finished within a few days because we accepted it for what it was (and used tea or milk to dunk the brittle cookie in).  Get excited because I will be experimenting yet again and I’m almost certain this skillet cookie will be good enough to share!

    And the last fail…yesterday I was supposed to attend one of Lee’s yoga classes.  I was so excited/nervous!  I scheduled it as one of my workouts on my Monday Moves, asked all of my Facebook peeps what I should wear and was ready to leave a full hour before the class started.  I don’t know about you, but when I’m in danger of being TOO EARLY to something, I tend to end up running late by doing last minute things.  This particular time I sat down to search for jobs.  Dangit.  I left later than I thought PLUS the 8 minute drive time ended up taking 30 minutes due to traffic and my gps that took me in circles.

    I was SO frustrated and felt SO BAD that Lee saved me a spot and I didn’t make it!  I decided to go for a walk and ended up being able to use the newly downloaded Nike plus app on my phone.  I also got to know my neighborhood and the path nearby a little better.  Also, no birds attacked me so I would call that a successful walk!  I guess I just need to learn to keep on keeping on!  Even when annoying things like getting lost in your own city happen!

    (Speaking of walking and running…make sure you enter my giveaway!  It ends today!!)

    Something else that weirds me out about my change in life plans is that now it really feels like I have moved permanently.  I’ve lived in Nebraska all my life…and now I’m six hours away from all things familiar!

    Knowing that I was going back to Nebraska for 5 weeks this summer made me feel like I had that time to say goodbye to everyone.

    I kept telling people, “it’s okay, I will be back this summer.”  I was overwhelmed with homesickness when I realized I wouldn’t get this chance.  This is why I talked to my mom and dad for an hour each on Monday.  I’m not a big phone person and would usually just wait to talk to my parents at birthdays and holidays, but I’m realizing this has to change!

    Well, I better get to my job hunt, huh?  Happy Wednesday!

    *~Amanda aka Semi-Health Nut~*

    Have you moved far away from your hometown?  How do you keep in touch with family and friends? 

    How have you learned to “keep on keeping on?”

    Linking up to the lovely Jenn at Peas and Crayons!

    New to the party? [click here] for more info on our Wednesday shenanigans!

    I love making new friends!  Feel free to comment below, or connect with me via Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or e-mail: semihealthnut AT yahoo DOT com.  You can also follow posts via e-mail , Bloglovin, Networked Blogs, or my blog feed. Thank you so much for reading and God bless! :)

    SHN Favorites 6-23-13

    Hello Friends!

    Happy Friday weekend! Oops.

    (PS have you voted on my new header fonts??  It seems silly but I cannot. make. a. decision!) 

    I seriously started writing out slash getting the pictures together for this post on Friday, but it got kind of crazy around here.

    I painted my nails for the first time in…a year?  Then tried writing up this post…didn’t work so well!

    And not crazy where I couldn’t write a post…more like I was mad that it was raining cats and dogs so Dave had to leave not two hours after arriving home on Friday, worked overnight on the railroad through about 3pm Saturday.  And the entire time neither of us knew how long he would be working so it was just this awful waiting….ugh.  Then he slept most of the day while I played computer games and listened to 30 Rock to get over my grumpiness at not conquering the world Saturday like I had planned.

    You see not only do I like Dave and get excited to spend the weekend with him…I also like checking things off my to-do list.  And when half of the to-do list involves Dave and he is unconscious after working his butt off on the railroad…that list is tossed out the window.

    Ya know what though?  It’s a new day!  A day full of possibilities and hope!

    AND a day to high-light some of my favorites from the past couple of weeks!

    Favorite Foodie Finds:
    Pinned to my Sweet Tooth board on Pinterest here

    Can I complain just one more time…our oven is broken AGAIN!  Darned rain shut our power off (for only a couple of minutes) and the oven has another error message on it…can’t wait till it gets fixed to do some BAKING!

    Pinned to my Semi-Healthy board on Pinterest here

    Pinned to my Snackaroo board on Pinterest here

    Um yes…I did choose TWO recipes from the lovely Jenn (who I link my WIAW posts up to) that feature BALLS!!  (It’s only inappropriate if your mind is in the gutter…so don’t judge!)

    Pinned to my Dinner Ideas board on Pinterest here

    Pinned to my Sweet Tooth board on Pinterest here
    Favorite Funnies:

    Do you watch Community?  You should.  It’s supposed to be about students at a community college, but mainly it’s a bunch of hilarious, unrealistic tangents.  I watched (or listened to) the first three seasons while unpacking boxes.  Dave keeps singing this song and it’s stuck in my head now!

    Favorite Fitness/ Body Image Posts:
    Pinned to my Fitness board on Pinterest here

    I’ve done that workout twice now and I love it!  I might even venture down to the gym for some heavier weights to show off my moves. ;)

    I honestly don’t know why I still follow this gal.  Not that she isn’t sweet, smart, or a good writer…but I have a fairly strict policy on not following bloggers who regularly show off their insanely sculpted abs.  Why?  This leads to comparison and I don’t want to fall into that trap.  That is kind of what this post is about so I liked the fact that she called her own blog out on it…but I kind of wonder why she doesn’t just take down the unrealistic images off of her site…

    Favorite Thoughtful Posts:

    This post made me want to reach through the screen and give her a big hug.  And it got me excited that I met her at Blend AND that she lives here in the big city!!

    Pinned to my “Quotes” or Inspiration board on Pinterest here

    I also got to meet this beautiful gal at Blend.  Let me tell you, she is one wise woman when it comes to pursuing dreams.  The bullet I like most is the “boundaries” one.  Most successful people will tell you to just go after your dreams, no matter what the cost.  But that’s simply not realistic…at least if you still want to have a life and friends and have your basic needs (such as sleep and eating) met.

    Pinned to my LOL What the what? board on Pinterest here

    It looks like this section is a shoutout to my Blends…because I met Heather at Blend Retreat too!  This post was basically something that all bloggers need to think about: why we are blogging.  There is a fine line between the pressure of pleasing your readers and writing what makes you personally happy.  Sometimes we need to take a step back and evaluate the line we are walking…especially if blogging becomes a chore.

    Pinned to my Faith board on Pinterest here

    The last post leads a little into this one…this lovely lady (who shares my ideas for things semi-healthy) is going through something very devastating in her life.  From what I can gather, they went through a house fire and lost a lot.  BUT this fire revealed to her a whole lot of things about her life…one of which was that she was neglecting her marriage, family and friends in order to pursue her dreams.  It is a heartbreaking, yet beautiful story on how God works through tradgedy.  “Refinement through fire” is a phrase that comes to mind in these types of situations.  Not that the process is fun, but beneficial for growth.

    Favorite Faith post:

    If you read my past two Thoughtful Thursday posts (here and here), you will know I’ve been struggling a little bit to separate my faith in God and religion.  Finding this post a couple of weeks ago was PROOF of why I know God is up there looking out for me.  I mean sometimes I just can’t say “what a coincidence!”  This was exactly what I needed: the viewpoint on how skewed we have become when it comes to the word “purity.”

    This gal has gone through A LOT, being brought up in a VERY strict home where she was mentally tortured and shamed in the name of religion (or the name of God!).  I will be going through and commenting on a whole list of posts I read of hers this coming Thursday.  Check this one out and let me know YOUR thoughts!  (And any other posts of hers you like so I can check them out for this Thursday’s post!)

    If you were featured…pretty please grab a button to share the love!

    Diary of a Semi-Health Nut
    Diary of a Semi-Health Nut

    And with that, I am off to hang out with my Dave and try to tackle some of our to-do list.  
    Or go for a walk.
    Or sit and watch Netflix.
    …unless of course he has to go into work again!  *sigh*

    *~Amanda aka Semi-Health Nut~*

    How often do you make items you pin on Pinterest?  I am one of those that might have made one or two things…but I definitely file things away for inspiration!

    Are you a list-maker?

    Linking up to Finding Joy in my Kitchen’s Friday Finds!

    I love making new friends!  Feel free to comment below, or connect with me via Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or e-mail: semihealthnut AT yahoo DOT com.  You can also follow posts via e-mail , Bloglovin, Networked Blogs, or my blog feed. Thank you so much for reading and God bless! :)