Saturday, September 8, 2018

Black Forest Ham & Cheddar Egg Cups

I’ve partnered with Applegate Farms to bring you this easy and delicious, make-ahead breakfast recipe. It’s one that you can whip up on your food prep day and enjoy throughout the week. As always, thank you for supporting CNC, and I hope you and your family enjoy this recipe!

I’m one of those people who goes to bed thinking about what I want to eat for breakfast the next morning. Anyone else? I swear having something tasty in mind always gets me out of bed. Plus, having a nutritious breakfast ready to go saves me time in the morning, especially since it’s so easy to pour myself an iced coffee, eat a handful of granola (or chocolate chips – no judgement) and call it a meal.

But I know myself and know that eating and enjoying (!!) an equally delicious and satisfying breakfast is a requirement for how the rest of my day will go. If I start my day with something healthy, the momentum almost always continues and inspires the rest of choices. Basically, all this to say that I have an awesome egg recipe that you can prep ahead for a stress-free morning – and it’s guaranteed to start your day off on the right foot. Your family – kids included – will love this recipe too. It travels well and can be eaten (with tiny hands) on the go!

This recipe for Black Forest Ham & Cheddar Egg Cups only calls for 5 ingredients (+ a few spices that you probably already have in your pantry). A couple of the ingredients are from Applegate, and we love their products for making quick and easy meals. In fact, this recipe only takes about 20-25 minutes, start to finish, to make. It’s definitely a recipe you can prep ahead at the beginning of the week for quickie meals and snacks. The egg cups are high in protein and fat, so they’ll fill you up and ward off hunger for hours. I have a feeling this recipe will become one of your family’s favorite prep-ahead breakfasts!

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Two of the star ingredients of this recipe are the Applegate Organic Black Forest Ham and Applegate Naturals Medium Cheddar Cheese. Our family is long-time fans of the brand, so I’m super excited to partner with Applegate on this blog post. We frequently purchase Applegate products since they produce high-quality natural and organic hot dogs, bacon, sausages, deli meats, cheese, and frozen products. Applegate’s products are made without GMO ingredients, and they source from farms where animals are treated with care and respect – all important reasons to sourcing our family’s food.

Applegate recently improved their line of deli meat products by removing carrageenan in its poultry deli meat varieties – even despite a recent United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reversal on banning the seaweed extract from organic foods and beverages. Carrageenan is an ingredient derived from red seaweed and is commonly used as a thickener or stabilizing agent in dairy foods such as ice cream and yogurt. Carrageenan is also commonly used as a binder in deli meats to help prevent meat from falling apart when sliced, particularly those made with poultry.

Applegate taste-tested several ingredient options to replace carrageenan and found that the majority lived up to their standards of clean ingredients, but didn’t quite meet their standards of crave-able food. However, once they combined potato starch and chicken broth, they found a winner in delivering clean, delicious food. The transition to carrageenan-free poultry deli varieties will happen in phases – with the Applegate Organics pre-sliced line (started in July 2018), followed by the Applegate Naturals pre-sliced line in October 2018, so keep a look at for them in your local grocery store!

Black Forest Ham & Cheddar Egg Cups


  • 8 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 12 pieces Applegate Black Forest Ham 2 packages
  • 3 slices Applegate Cheddar Cheese
  • 3/4 cup frozen peppers and onions chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • salt + pepper to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, peppers and onions, garlic powder, salt, and pepper until well combined.

  3. Coat a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray and then place one slice of ham in each cup. Cut cheddar slice into quarters, so you have 4 smaller squares. Place one cheese square in the center of each piece of ham.

  4. Pour batter evenly among cups, about 3/4 full. You can also place cheese square ON TOP of the egg batter if you prefer a cheesy top! 

  5. Place muffin tin in oven and cook for 14 minutes or until eggs are cooked all the way through.

  6. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly before serving. Store leftovers in a glass container with lid for up to a week. Reheat in microwave as needed.

from Carrots 'N' Cake

Oh, It’s Too Early for That

Hello from Des Moines! 🙂

I just wanted to pop in real quick to share a cute story from my travels yesterday. It gave me all of the warm fuzzies! 🙂 But, first, check out the throwback photo below. (I was at the 12th Annual Niman Ranch Farmer Appreciate Dinner.) It’s from 2010 when bloggers were few and far between. I remember meeting Chef John and Danielle and feeling like we were all long lost cousins or something! Ha! Also, what am I wearing?

Yesterday started BRIGHT and EARLY at 4:35 AM, so, of course, I needed iced coffee when I arrived at the airport. Breakfast #1 was decaf espresso over ice with milk, an Atlas Bar, and an apple.

My flight ended up getting delayed 90 minutes, so I did some work and then grabbed another iced coffee just before the plane was about to board. Within minutes of receiving the iced coffee, I spilled it ALL over the floor. I don’t even know what happened, but it made a huge mess. Thankfully, two women nearby saw the whole thing happen and helped me clean it up. The barista also made me another drink for free. When I told her what happened, her response was “oh, it’s too early for that!” I must have thanked her and the women, who helped me clean up, a million times. Their kindness really made my day. I’m glad to know there ARE still nice people in this world!

Question of the Day

When was the last time a stranger did something kind for you? When was the last time YOU did something kind for a stranger?

The post Oh, It’s Too Early for That appeared first on Carrots 'N' Cake.

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Low-Carb Mug Cake

Admittedly, it’s hard to believe that a chocolate cake made in a microwave without flour or sugar could taste any good. This low-carb mug cake defies the odds. It has dark chocolate flavor, a soft, cakey texture and bits of real dark chocolate that melt in your mouth.

This low-carb mug cake recipe works because it has the right balance of ingredients—one egg yolk, a little butter and cream, almond flour and dark chocolate. In less than a minute the ingredients bake together into a perfect little treat, and your kitchen is filled with the amazing aroma of chocolate cake.

Make this mug cake even more decadent by pouring melted dark chocolate or whole cream over the warm cake when it’s done.

Time in the Kitchen: 5 minutes

Servings: 1 cake


  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (15 grams)
  • 2 tablespoons super fine almond flour (14 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon raw cacao powder (5 grams)
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder (2.5 ml)
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream (15 ml)
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract (1.2 ml)
  • 8 drops liquid stevia (add more, or less, depending on your preference)
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 9 grams (3 squares) dark chocolate (85% cacao), chopped


Melt the butter into a small mug, in the microwave (about 20 seconds).

Mix in the almond flour, cacao powder, baking powder and a tiny pinch of salt until thick and smooth.

Add the heavy cream, vanilla extract, and liquid stevia. Mix until smooth, then add the egg yolk and mix again until smooth.

Stir in the dark chocolate.

Put the mug back in the microwave and cook for 50 seconds. Microwaves vary, so the exact cooking time can vary as well, but overcooking the mug cake will make it dry and burn the bits of dark chocolate. Error on the side of undercooking, rather than overcooking the cake.

This low carb mug cake has the best texture and flavor when it’s freshly baked and warm, so enjoy immediately!

  • Calories: 362
  • Fat: 33.6 grams
  • Protein: 7 grams
  • Carbs: 10.4 grams

The post Low-Carb Mug Cake appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.

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