Easy Pumpkin Pecan Oatmeal

by Jessica Randhawa in , ,

Fall wasn't just a date on the calendar this year, it actually meant something. For the first time in years, it has actually felt like autumn in northern California. We've had rain (with more on the way!), the leaves have started changing color and I've been forced to pull out all our winter sweaters and jackets from the closet (or, in Octavian's case, buy all brand new ones) before the month of January. That said, it wouldn't be California without sunshine, and while rain is expected next week, today will be nice and warm and sunshiny. 

Thankfully, however, with this visible shift from summer to autumn my attitude toward the changing seasons also shifted (although I will never love that it gets dark at 5pm).

Almost overnight, I went from dreading the end of summer and refusing to pick up a pumpkin or butternut squash to literally buying anything and everything pumpkin that I could get my hands on. Yep, just like that I was on the pumpkin train (fair warning, you guys).

So while I was out shopping the other afternoon stocking up on pumpkin pie spice and enough canned pumpkin to get me through the year, I just so happened upon two pumpkin products I had to have- International Delight Pumpkin Pie Spice Coffee Creamer AND (NEW) International Delight Pumpkin Pie Spice Iced Coffee.

The iced coffee was a given; I mean, it's coffee and pumpkin pie spice together in one magical drink that I can leave in my refrigerator and pour a big glass of whenever I'm feeling tired or lazy or hot. It's as if coffee and pumpkin pie spice had a baby and delivered the world a gift of instant energy. PLUS, I can have instant iced coffee anytime which sounds pretty perfect on confused autumn days like today.

And then there was the creamer.

You guys, this ID Pumpkin Pie Spice Coffee Creamer is so much more than something to put in your coffee (although that is perfectly fine, too). This creamer is pure pumpkin magic that needs to pretty much replace anything that calls for regular creamer (okaaay, maybe don't take it THAT far).

It was early morning so I wanted to start with something easy; and, of course, something the whole family would love.

Yes, OATMEAL! Oatmeal is one of my favorite breakfast foods. No matter how you make it, it's always a little piece of warm toasty comfort in a bowl. Pumpkin Pie Spice Oatmeal was going to blow oatmeal's mind. 

You guys, this was the best oatmeal I have EVER had. I'm not even kidding. Perfectly spiced (too much nutmeg is a no-no with me) and oh soooo creamy. I topped each bowl with chopped pecans and pepitas to help balance out the sweet and creamy and the result was reminiscent of pumpkin pecan pie (but healthier). I had pretty high expectations, but even this one blew me away a bit. And the husband? Well, let's just say I have never seen him so excited over oatmeal before (he's more of a berry and fruit guy).

Click here to find International Delight Pumpkin Pie Spice near you!

Pumpkin Pecan Oatmeal

Prep Time: 10 minutes / Cook Time: 25 minutes / Total Time: 35 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings


1 (14-ounce) can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
2 cups water (plus more as needed)
1.5 cups milk (almond, regular, soy)
1/4 cup International Delight Pumpkin Pie Spice Creamer
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
2 cups quick cook oatmeal (not instant)

For serving-
Chopped pecans and/or pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
Honey or maple syrup
ID Pumpkin Pie Spice Creamer / Milk


  1. In a large saucepan over high heat combine the pumpkin puree, water, milk, ID Pumpkin Pie Spice Creamer, raisins, and pumpkin pie spice. Whisk everything together until fully combined and bring to a low boil.

  2. Add the oatmeal and mix well. Reduce heat to low. Cook oatmeal over low heat for approximately 15-25 minutes (cooking time will vary depending on brand), stirring often, until desired consistency is reached.

  3. Remove from heat and serve immediately. Garnish with chopped pecans, pumpkin seeds, honey and ID Pumpkin Pie Spice Creamer.

*I can smell when my oats are nearly done- oatmeal has a distinct oatmeal smell the really comes out when cooked.
*This oatmeal is not meant to be runny, however, don't hesitate to add more water/milk/creamer if needed.


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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of International Delight. The opinions and text are all mine.

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Homemade Chicken Teriyaki Broccoli Salad Bowl

by Jessica Randhawa in , , ,

Despite my best attempts at good oral hygiene, I do not have the best luck when it comes to my teeth. I have been warned in past years that my over enthusiastic brushing pressure may one day lead to problems, but I guess I didn't really take them seriously because where was I this evening? In the dentists chair, getting my over-brushed gums filled because I brushed straight to the nerve or root (or whatever gum anatomy that part is). You guys, I forgot how horrible the dentist is. I mean, I have an awesome dentist, but the needles and the scraping and the...drill. Let's just say I will be paying more attention to how I brush my teeth from now on (rather than click around on my phone with one hand and brush with the other).

As you may have guessed, this dinner was not from tonight. Apparently my super sensitive teeth and "high metabolism" meant several shots of whatever they needed to use to numb my mouth. By the end, the entire right side of my mouth, nose, cheek and straight up to my eyelid was numb. It's 9pm and I was finally able to slurp up some pre-made soup. The soup was good, but this Chicken (with homemade) Teriyaki was so much better.

There are so many wonderful things about this dish and even more ways to make it your own.

I used boneless skinless chicken thighs because I knew I was going to go heavy on the veggies. My husband is very vocal about his preference for chicken thighs, and with all the veggies, I knew the chicken would make him extra happy. Breasts would taste just as great.

For the salad I blanched broccoli florets, sugar snap peas (my fav!) and regular peas- this leaves them cooked, but not soggy and without the raw taste of uncooked veggies. I steamed some cauliflower rice, mixed it up with regular rice and built my bowl on top of a bed of cabbage. BUT, if you hate cabbage or cauliflower rice, swap it out and mix with some noodles instead.

Don't forget the broccoli and sugar snap peas, though, those are keepers :)

Anyway, please excuse me while I go eat a giant bowl of ice cream. I may not have worked out today, but my face is numb, so I win!

Homemade Chicken Teriyaki Broccoli Salad

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 10-12 minutes / Total Time: 25-30 minutes
Yield: 4 servings


Terikaki Sauce:
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced (or grated on a microplane)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon corn starch

For the Chicken:
1.5-2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs
salt + pepper, to taste
2 teaspoons oil

For the Teriyaki Dressing:
3 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil (add more if desired)
1/2 serrano or jalapeno chili pepper, finely chopped (optional)
1 (heaping) tablespoon honey
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons water

For the Salad:
1 cup green peas
12 ounces fresh broccoli florets
10 ounces sugar snap peas
1 head nappa cabbage, shredded
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
Sesame seeds, for garnish


  1. In the bowl of a blender blend together the ginger, garlic, soy sauce, brown sugar, rice vinegar, water and corn starch. Process until fully combined and creamy. Reserve 3 tablespoons of the sauce in the blender; meanwhile transfer remaining sauce to a small bowl and set aside.

  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat (this usually takes a while. The water should be boiling by the time the dressing has been made).

  3. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. When the skillet is hot add the oil and then carefully add the chicken thighs. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook the chicken on each side for approximately 4-6 minutes, or until each side is nicely golden brown and chicken is nearly cooked. Add the bowl of sauce to the skillet and reduce heat to medium low, cooking until chicken is cooked through. Remove from heat and set aside to rest.

  4. Prepare the teriyaki dressing- in the same blender that contains the leftover 3 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce, add the sesame oil, chili, honey, rice vinegar and water. Taste and add any additions necessary. Set aside.

  5. By now the large pot of water should be boiling- blanch the green peas, broccoli florets and sugar snap peas in the water for 2-3 minutes, or just until they start to soften (you don't want them to get too cooked and mushy). When ready, carefully drain the boiling water and rinse with cold water for 1-2 minutes to slow down further cooking.

  6. In a large bowl toss together the blanched veggies, chopped cabbage, green onion and teriyaki dressing. Slice the cooked chicken into small strips and add to the salad. Serve with steamed rice or cauliflower rice. Garnish with sesame seeds.


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Easy Monterey Jack Mac 'n Cheese with Chicken + Very Berry Bunny Cereal Marshmallow Treats

by Jessica Randhawa in , , , , , ,

This post is sponsored by Annie's Homegrown but the content and opinions expressed here are my own. Thanks for reading!
#yumforall #annieshomegrown

Delicious creamy Monterey Jack Mac 'n Cheese with Chicken + Very Berry Bunny Marshmallow Cereal Treats is making lunch time fun again for the whole family! And now thanks to Annie's Homegrown, eating organic has never been so easy or yummy :) Grab a fork or spoon and sit a while, these fall comfort foods are keepers!
(or just scroll down for a cute bunny video)

What is organic farming? To put it simply, organic farming (the kind of farming which produces organic foods) is a system which fosters the cycling of resources, supports ecological balance and helps conserve biodiversity. Some organic organizations may even choose to limit the use of pesticides and fertilization and foods are typically not processed using exposure to radiation, solvents or scary additives. These things are not just good for us, but it's also great for our lovely home, planet Earth.

I've tried to remember when I started eating organically and, to be honest, I have no idea. I know it wasn't when I was in college, so it had to have taken place sometime between after college and before Octavian was born. The transition started slowly and mostly because it was the cool thing to do.

And then the husband and I decided to get me knocked up and, welllll, let's just say the two of us became obsessed about eating only organic because, you know, the baby! the BABY! Thankfully we've chilled out since then, but that isn't to say that eating organic and responsibly isn't super important to us- I still buy as much organic meat and produce that our bank accounts will allow, but we're your average family and organic chicken is not cheap.

Since Octavian made his grand entrance nearly 3 years ago (howww has it already been THAT long?) Annie's Homegrown has become a permanent resident in our home and my go-to for all our snacking and mac-ing needs. Thanks to Annie's I know that whenever I serve my toddler mac 'n cheese (which is pretty much every day around here), it has NO artificial flavors, synthetic colors or preservatives; it's produced without antibiotics, synthetic hormones or pesticides; AND that they work closely with suppliers to source only non-GMO ingredients.

Annie's Homegrown has made it easy to eat organic (at least in one area)- not just because the food tastes good, but also because it's in stores everywhere and reasonably priced.

I have made Annie's Mac n' Cheese in every single variety about a million times (except for the Vegan version which I just learned exists). It is in the top three of Octavian's favorite lunch foods and lately when I've asked him what he wants for breakfast he says, "macawoni".

Sorry kiddo, one meal needs to exist without cheese.

The other afternoon I decided to let him pick which box of Annie's Mac 'n Cheese he wanted for lunch (to give my crazy little child a little bit of control). He picked the Organic Grass Fed Shells and White Cheddar Mac 'n Cheese and, it being the weekend and all, I was feeling inspired to make lunch a little more interesting without a lot of extra work.

Say hello to last weekends lunch- Monterey Jack Mac 'n Cheese with Chicken and Corn. Still creamy and cheesy and completely organic, but filled with all the things you didn't know you wanted in a mac 'n cheese... until now. 

You guys, the corn, though. Even my husband who is typically neutral on the subject of corn couldn't stop eating it and even got seconds. Octavian, my spice loving little child, agreed. 

Monterey Jack Mac 'n Cheese with Chicken and Corn

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 35 minutes / Total Time: 50 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings


1 box Annie's Homegrown Organic Grass Fed Shells & White Cheddar
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
Salt + Pepper, to taste
Cajun seasoning, to taste (optional)
Olive oil
1/2 - 1 cup milk, more as needed
1 tablespoon butter
3 tablespoons cream cheese
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced (optional- leave out if you do not like spicy foods) 
1 1/2 cups corn kernels, fresh or frozen, thawed and cooked
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
Annie's Homegrown Cheddar Bunnies, crushed into small pieces (for serving)


  1. Season both sides of chicken breasts with salt, pepper and cajun seasoning (if using). Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add 1-2 teaspoons olive oil or butter to the pan and distribute evenly over the surface. When pan is hot, carefully transfer chicken to the skillet and reduce heat to medium. Allow the chicken to cook approximately 6-7 minutes per side, flipping occasionally to prevent burning. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Remove chicken from the heat and set aside when no longer pink on the inside and completely cooked through.

  2. When the pot of water comes to a boil, carefully add Annie's Homegrown Organic Grass Fed Shells and gently stir with a wooden spoon. Reduce heat to medium. Continue to cook noodles until al dente, stirring occasionally (important not to overcook noodles as they will get soggy). Drain noodles and run them under cold water to prevent additional cooking. Set shells aside.

  3. Heat a large skillet (or sauce pan) over medium heat. Add milk, butter and cheese packet (it came in the box) and whisk together until butter has melted and milk is hot. Gently add the cream cheese and (optional) jalapeno and carefully whisk everything together until cream cheese has dissolved into the milk (reduce heat to prevent burning, if needed). Carefully stir in the cooked corn kernels and cooked shells and gently mix everything together. Add more milk if needed. Finally, add the shredded Monterey Jack cheese and stir to incorporate.

  4. By now the chicken should have cooled enough to easily handle. Chop chicken into small cubes and carefully mix with the creamy shells or evenly distribute between bowls when serving (making it easy to keep this meal vegetarian for any non-meat eaters).

  5. Serve with additional cheese, if desired.


Very Berry Marshmallow Cereal Treats

(and a whole lot more photos because sometimes I just can't be decisive)

Ironically, while on the same shopping trip where Octavian and I picked up the Grass Fed Organic Shells and White Cheddar mac 'n cheese (the very cheese covered noodle product my child wants morning noon and night), we (actually, it was all Octavian) discovered the "Bunny Cereal!" I usually cringe at the thought of my kid discovering a food he wants (he recently discovered sugar is the best thing ever), especially cereal (because cereal basically equals sugar), but I was presently surprised by this one. 

Flavored with real fruit, Annie's Homegrown Organic Berry Bunnies Cereal contains 15g whole grains per serving, No artificial flavors, synthetic colors or preservatives; No high-fructose corn syrup; and only non-GMO ingredients. So now, instead of asking me for "macawoni" in the morning, he climbs the pantry shelves for his favorite "bunny cereal" (and while he sleeps I sneak in my own bowl of bunnies).

A couple months ago I had purchased several bags of marshmallows for a baking project that never happened. They needed to be used and eaten; and since I hate plain marshmallows, they needed to be well hidden or mixed into something. Cereal treats were the obvious answer to all my marshmallow problems (life is rough, you guys).

Using Annie's Homegrown Organic Berry Bunnies Cereal and some freeze dried mixed berries, I give you the EASIEST marshmallow cereal treat EVER. Seriously, though, four ingredients for these yummy surprise treats. Just four. Plus, they're easy to transport and store, which makes leftovers a breeze. Bursting with delicious berry flavor goodness, my child is officially obsessed.

(although there was some confusion on his part as to why he couldn't eat these marshmallow cereal treats for breakfast)

Very Berry Marshmallow Cereal Treats

Prep Time: 5 minutes / Cook Time: 10 minutes / Rest Time: 1 hour / Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Yield: One (1) 9"x9" baking dish


6 tablespoons butter
1 (10.5 ounce) bag marshmallows
6 cups Annie's Homegrown Organic Berry Bunnies Cereal
1/2 cup mixed freeze-dried berries (raspberries, blueberries, strawberries or blackberries)


  1. Lightly grease a 9"x9" baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

  2. Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Once butter has melted stir in the marshmallows. Continue to stir the marshmallows until they have completely melted. Remove from heat and immediately stir in your Annie's Homegrown Organic Berry Bunnies Cereal. Mix together until cereal is coated with melted marshmallow and then sprinkle in the mixed freeze-dried berries, folding everything together to incorporate.

  3. Transfer ingredients to your prepared baking dish and smooth the surface into one even layer to fit the pan (I used my hands to get this job done). 

  4. Allow your very berry bunny treats to set for 1 hour (no baking required. yayyy!) before cutting into squares and serving.


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