Sheet Pan Roasted Chicken and Vegetables


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{This post is sponsored by Foster Farms® Simply Raised, locally grown in California; the opinions expressed are my own.}

Our family is in the midst of school, soccer practices, and a million other activities, but eating dinner together is a priority (as you can see from all the weekly meal plans I post!). Meals that can be made ahead with local, whole, and fresh products are a necessity to maintain our schedules and sanity. So, when Foster Farms provided me with a local product to try out for this sponsored post, Simply Raised Chicken (without antibiotics), one of my favorite recipes immediately sprang to mind: Sheet Pan Roasted Chicken with Vegetables. Added bonus for this recipe: there’s only one pan to clean!

I hesitate to even call this a recipe because it is more of a method that you can tweak based upon your own family’s preferences. The versatility also allows you to pick whatever is local and looking great that week in the store or Farmers’ Market.

Foster Farms Simply Raised Chicken is definitely local for me because all Foster Farms Chicken sold in California is raised in California. It turns out that Foster Farms has been producing locally grown poultry since its founding 76 years ago. Its chicken is delivered fresh on the West Coast from local ranches in 48 hours or less. (Some chicken brands are trucked across the country, which could take up to a week to reach the West Coast.) All Foster Farms fresh chicken products are American Humane Certified.

You’ll just need a package of Foster Farms Simply Raised Chicken Half Breasts, which are bone in and skin on, a few different root vegetables that you like roasted, and a few ingredients to make a flavored butter for under the skin. Also, whole cloves of garlic and halved shallots never hurt.

The idea is that you place the chicken on top of the vegetables, instead of scattering the vegetables around the chicken, so the vegetables end up cooking in the pan drippings. You’re welcome.

There’s only one rule: a baguette is mandatory for sopping up the sauce made in the sheet pan with lemon juice, white wine, and the drippings from the chicken.

Prep Note: I prepped my Sheet Pan Roasted Chicken and Vegetables all the way through step three in the afternoon, covered it with plastic wrap and popped in the fridge, then carried on when we got home from soccer practice. It worked out perfectly! Here’s how it looked when I hit the pause button:

Whether you can prep it ahead of time is a bit dependent on what vegetables you choose. For example, potatoes might turn pink once chopped, so keep that in mind.

Here’s the recipe!

Sheet Pan Roasted Chicken and Vegetables


1 package Foster Farms Simply Raised Half Breasts (skin on and bone-in)

2 pounds root vegetables, peeled and cut into chunks (I used 1 lb. parsnips, 1 lb. sweet potatoes)

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

4 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons herbs (I used 1 tablespoon each of rosemary and thyme)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 lemon, zest and juice

1/4 cup dry white wine or chicken broth


1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

2. Place the chopped vegetables of your choice on a sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Make sure the vegetables are in a single layer.

3. In a small bowl, combine butter, herbs, zest from one lemon, 2 minced cloves of garlic, salt, and pepper. Loosen the skin on each chicken breast and rub this mixture between the skin and meat. Season chicken with salt and pepper and place on top of the vegetables.

4. Roast chicken and vegetables for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes of roasting, toss the potatoes in the pan and move them around so that new vegetables are under the chicken. Pour lemon juice and ¼ cup dry white wine or chicken broth over chicken. Roast about 15 more minutes.

5. When chicken has reached an internal temperature of 170 degrees, remove from oven and let rest under a foil tent for 5 to 10 minutes. Check to make sure the vegetables are all tender. If they are not, place them back in the oven. When all is done, serve chicken with vegetables and baguette.


{This post is sponsored by Foster Farms®; the opinions expressed are my own.}

Five Fun and Frugal Halloween Party Ideas


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Halloween parties are so fun to plan - there are just too many ideas out there for food, decorations, and favors and nobody wants to break the bank. Here are a few tips that have helped me in the past to create a DIY Halloween party that is both fun and frugal. Let me know if you have more to add in the comments!

1. Novelty Food Is Mandatory

Puking Pumpkin

Halloween Ghost Brownies

Last year, I made both the ghost brownies and the puking pumpkin shown here. Both were huge hits at the party and a lovely topic of conversation.

Guest: "What is that? Who on Earth made the puking pumpkin!!??"
Me: "That would be me."
Guest: "OMG, it's perfect."
Me: "Thank you!"
Guest: "Oh, and this guac is good, too."

Here's the only problem. How can I top these this year? Help me out in the comments if you have any ideas!

2. Get the Buffet Ready for Success

Halloween Buffet Decorations

It will be so much easier when guests arrive if they have a place to put the potluck contribution. Head over to your local fabric store (I picked up some black and white Chevron fabric from Joann's), then stitch-witch the hem, and you have yourself a cute runner. This can all be set up well before the party and will save tons of time when guests arrive.

3. Halloween Party Favors Can be Cheap, Cute, and Candy-Free, Too

Halloween Party Favors Without Candy

There are four million Halloween party favor ideas on Pinterest, but this is a cute, cheap, and practical one I found at Embellishing Life. I bought the bags on Jane, the glow bracelets at the Dollar Store, and printed the tags at home. Kids are going to get so much candy, so this idea was very appealing!

4. Burlap and Tulle Go Along Way for a Little Cash

Halloween Party Centerpieces

Halloween Party Centerpieces

I covered the tables in burlap and wrapped some glittery pumpkins in tulle. I placed them on some spider webs from the Dollar Store. Add some more tulle around the chairs with bows and bam! Tables were done. Simple and cute!

5. Evite is Your Friend for a Potluck - Use the "What to Bring" Option

Evite What to Bring

Evite makes inviting friends a quick and easy, we all know that, but did you know you can use it to allow people to sign up for potluck items? It's a bit tricky because the option to add the "What to Bring" widget to your evite invitation only shows up AFTER you publish it. That option will not show in the draft.

Once you publish, you'll see this:

Click on that widget and you'll be able to make a list of what you'd like guests to bring and they can sign up for a category of item and leave a note of exactly what they'll provide for the potluck.

Make sure you include a note in your Message for the invitation so people know to look for the widget and sign up!

What are your favorite Halloween party ideas?

Receive 1 Year of Every Day with Rachael Ray Free when you Pre-Order Everyone is Italian on Sunday


{The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link. Thank you for your support!}

When your favorite cookbook author releases a new cookbook, it is cause for celebration! That's how I was feeling today when I saw that Rachael Ray has a new cookbook coming out in just a few weeks, on October 27. It's called Everyone is Italian on Sunday. Rachael says: “This book is the single most important work of my life. It represents decades of enjoying and working with food and the people I love most in this world.”

If you pre-order Everyone is Italian on Sunday, you qualify for a free year (or a free renewal) of Rachael Ray's magazine - Every Day with Rachael Ray. What a deal! To redeem after your pre-order, fill out this form.

This new cookbook is a whopping 408 pages, though it looks like the size of the pages is smaller than Rachael's previous ones. Here's the description from Amazon:

If you’re like Rachael Ray, you’ll agree that there is something comforting and heartwarming about a heaping plate of perfectly cooked spaghetti with moist and tender meatballs covered in a luscious, dark-red tomato sauce. Now, in Everyone Is Italian on Sunday, Rachael invites you into her home to share her family’s culinary history and the recipes that have shaped her life and career.
For Rachael, Italian food—spinach gnocchi, linguine puttanesca, chicken saltimbocca, pizza capricciosa—has the power to summon cherished, happy memories. In this one indispensable book, she has brought together signature recipes for the traditional Italian staples that she grew up with and still cooks for her family and friends today. From arancini to saffron gnocchetti sardi, from small bites to hearty meals, from her sister’s favorite Italian desserts to her husband’s Italian ingredient-inspired cocktails, here is a treasury of delicious dishes to prepare with love and devour with gusto.
Classic Italian cooking has always been the foundation of almost every meal that Rachael prepares, and she hopes that you and your family, friends, and neighbors will love savoring everything that Italian cooking has to offer. Italian Sundays are all about bringing people together and creating wonderful memories while enjoying the pleasures of great homemade food.
So pull up a chair at Rachael’s kitchen table and experience the magic of an Italian Sunday!

It probably goes without saying, but I pre-ordered already and will be keeping an eye out for any further details on Everyone is Italian on Sunday!

Stich Fix Review #8


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The Box: 

Stitch Fix

The Cost:

Initial styling fee of $20 that is applied to your order if you keep any items. You only pay for items you keep.

What's Included:

Stitch Fix asks you to fill out a detailed style profile, then sends five items based on your preferences. Your Fix can include clothing, accessories, bags, and even coats. Stitch Fix also offers a maternity subscription.

Stitch Fix #8 Review:

Here's what I received in my Stitch Fix:

Mystree Chamberlin Striped Drape Front Cardigan, Burgundy, $78

Papermoon Martell Chambray Tunic, Navy, $58
I loved this top so much that I might wear it for our family portraits this weekend. The picture does not do it justice! I couldn't find this style online for a price comparison.

Liverpool Denise Bootcut Jean, Black, $78
A similar version is $79 on Amazon

41Hawthorn (Stitch Fix's in house brand) Queensland Doman Jersey Top, Dark Purple, $48
The fabric on this is so luxurious and the color is gorgeous.

Street Level Huron Mixed-Material Reversible Tote, teal green canvas and cognac leather, $54
American Eagle has a similar version for $37.95

I was tempted to keep all of it, but my budget strenuously objected! So, I kept the two items that I absolutely loved - the chambray tunic and the eggplant dolman. 

For the others, there were just a few things that didn't work for me. The burgundy on the cardigan just didn't appeal to me (I would have kept the one that Meg got with the gray!), the boot cut on the black jeans was just a bit too wide for my taste, and I just ordered a similar tote from JustFab. So, I was very happy with my Stitch Fix and can't wait to get another one!

Here are my previous Stitch Fix Reviews:

Stitch Fix #7
Stitch Fix #6
Stitch Fix #5
Stitch Fix #4
Stitch Fix #3
Stitch Fix #2
Stitch Fix #1

Menu Plan Monday


{The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link. Thank you for your support!}

Does anyone else have a love-hate relationship with birthdays? So fun, yet so exhausting all at the same time! It's worse when your child's birthday is the day before yours. ;) Here's what we ate this week:


Eat on the road - on the way home from a birthday party.


One Pan Garlic Ranch Chicken and Veggies {Damn Delicious} - So good! Who would have thought that brown sugar and ranch seasoning would be so outstanding on chicken? I made the whole recipe so my husband would have some for lunch salads and for tomorrow's dinner.


Expat Fried Rice {Keepers Cookbook} - The description on this recipe is correct - oyster sauce is what makes this fried rice! It was a great use for last night's chicken and the kids loved it (they ate around the spinach).


Eat Out - another birthday.


Eat Out - OMG. Another birthday. But this one was mine!


Parsnip-Apple Soup {Rachael Ray Magazine} - I'm not sure why I thought it was a good idea to make dinner on the night before throwing a big birthday party at home, but this recipe came to the rescue. It's a true 30 minute meal with a ton of flavor and a simple, clean list of ingredients! I served it with a baguette for dipping.


Eat Out! I'll be posting about all the fun birthday party recipes in the future!

See all our weekly menu plans here. Here's the site I use for meal planning and to create the cute menu at the top of this post:

Check out more recipes over at Menu Plan Monday!


October 2015 TBR List Linkup {Add Your TBR List!}


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I have to admit a bit of defeat after I failed to make it through my TBR from last month AGAIN! I did make it through three of the five and read a bunch of galleys, so I am reading. I'm just not what I planned to read. So, this month I'm listing four books and will do my very bestest ever to read them!

We'd love to see what you're reading, too, so link up your own TBR at the end of this list! There's no requirement that you add a link to a blog - it can be an instagram post, facebook post, blog, or anything you'd like!

1. A Book from My Quarterly Subscriptions

by José Saramago

This was a selection from the now defunct Riot Read, which was a monthly subscription. I love my Quarterly Book Riot subscription box though, which is still going strong!

2. A library book that is due soon

The School for Good and Evil
by Soman Chainani

It ended up that The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett was due before the School for Good and Evil, so I read that instead! I for realsies need to read this one this month, though! I want to check it out for my daughter and she keeps nagging me. These are good problems to have, I know.

3. A Book I Keep Meaning to Get To

Cinder (Book One of the Lunar Chronicles)
by Marissa Meyer

4. The Oldest the Book on My TBR List

The Guardians of the West (Book One of The Mallorean)
David Eddings

I was not super good at Goodreads when I started back in the day, so the oldest book on my TBR is actually the second book in this series. Woops! I will assume I added it as a placeholder for the series and just dive in.

The Best of the Halloween Magazine Issues {Recipes}


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The only thing I love more than the Halloween issues of magazines is the Thanksgiving issues of magazines. Since I have to wait a whole month to see those treats, here's the best of what I found in the Halloween issues of Food Network Magazine, All Recipes Magazine, Every Day with Rachael Ray Magazine, All You Magazine, Martha Stewart Living, and Parents.

From Food Network Magazine:

Image Credit: Food Network Magazine

Chocolate Doughnut Holes

Image Credit: Food Network Magazine

Chocolate Carrot Cake

Image Credit: Food Network Magazine

Orange Candy Apples

From All Recipes Magazine:

Image Credit: All Recipes  Magazine

Bat Cupcakes

Image Credit: All Recipes Magazine

Pumpkin Patch Dirt Cake

From Every Day with Rachael Ray:

Image Credit: Every Day with Rachael Ray

Cheese-Spread Skull

From All You Magazine:

Image Credit: All You Magazine

Haunted Chocolate Bark

Image Credit: All You Magazine

Spooky Candy-Coated Apples

Image Credit: All You Magazine

Deserted Graveyard Cake

From Martha Stewart Living:

Image Credt: Martha Stewart Living

From Parents:

Image Credit: Parents Magazine

Spider Cheese Ball

Image Credit: Parents Magazine

Pizza Ghost Crostini

Image Credit: Parents Magazine

Turkey Meatball Eyeballs

Image Credit: Parents Magazine

Green Witches' Brew

Image Credit: Parents Magazine

Orange Chocolate Pudding Jack-O-Lanterns