Katie’s Kitchen

Katie Ryan's Cooking Blog

Start your weekend off right with the Wake up Crew’s recipe of the week! Every Friday morning during the Free Country Wake Up Crew on WFRE Katie Ryan will feature a new recipe you can make at home!


{Katie’s Kitchen} Easy Peanut Butter Frosting Cupcakes

My favorite cake is chocolate with Peanut Butter frosting…so why not try with cupcakes for our station Cupcake Bake Off today! Of course, Katie’s Kitchen HAD to be involved.

I used a classic boxed Devil’s Food Cake mix from the grocery store, follow the recipe on the back to bake your cupcakes!

For the frosting:

Start out with 2 sticks of softened butter and 3/4 cup of creamy peanut butter. I used my stand mixer on low for 2 minutes until blended with the paddle attachment.

Then, add 2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar and mix on low. Add the remaining 2 cups of sugar and the vanilla extract and half of the whipping cream. Beat on low, then increase to medium-high speed for about 2 minutes until the frosting is fluffy.

Spread on cupcakes when cooled. Add a peanut butter cup for topping!



{Katie’s Kitchen} Chickpea Avocado Summer Salad

This quick easy salad is my new favorite lunch, side dish and anytime snack!

I make it all of the time and love to eat it on fresh corn chips or by itself with a fork and it’s packed with protein!

This recipe is a toss and go…throw everything in the bowl and mix it up and you’re done. Grab a mixing bowl, chop up your avocado into small cubes, chop your cilantro, cucumber (I didn’t add this to mine and it was still great), and red onion into small slices. I also chopped my cherry tomatoes in half. Add in your chickpeas- I used a whole can.

Then, combine all of the ingredients into the bowl and add virgin olive oil, lemon juice minced garlic, salt, pepper, and feta cheese to top it all off. Toss to coat!



Ingredients: I found the recipe here! 

  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice from 1 large lemon
  • 1 garlic clove pressed or minced
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt or to taste
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes halved
  • 1 English Cucumber halved and sliced
  • 15 oz chickpeas (drained, rinsed)
  • 1/2 medium red onion thinly sliced
  • 1 avocado sliced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro chopped
  • 4 oz feta cheese diced

{Katie’s Kitchen} The BEST Baked Mac & Cheese

Brought to you by Stroup Flooring America 

I took this recipe to my family’s Easter party and everyone loved it and went back for seconds! I even doubled the recipe. Don’t be shocked at the amount of cheese that goes into this recipe…it’s totally worth it.

Start out – Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a large 3 qt or 4 qt baking dish and set aside.Combine shredded cheeses in a large bowl and set aside.

Then, cook your pasta. I used jumbo elbow noodles. Cook about one minute shy of al dente according to the package instructions. Drain, and place in a large bowl.

Drizzle pasta with olive oil and stir to coat pasta. Set aside to cool while preparing cheese sauce.

Melt butter in a deep dutch oven or pot. Then, Whisk in flour over medium heat and continue whisking for about 1 minute until bubbly and golden.  Gradually whisk in the milk and heavy cream until nice and smooth. Continue whisking until you see bubbles on the surface and then continue cooking and whisking for another 2 minutes. Add in salt and pepper.

Now…here comes the cheese!!! Add two cups of shredded cheese and whisk until smooth. Add another two cups of shredded cheese and continue whisking until creamy and smooth. Sauce should be nice and thick.  Stir in the cooled pasta until combined and pasta is fully coated with the cheese sauce.  Pour half of the mac and cheese into the prepared baking dish. Top with remaining 2 cups of shredded cheese and then the remaining mac and cheese.

In a small bowl, combine panko crumbs, Parmesan cheese, melted butter and paprika. Sprinkle over the top and bake until bubbly and golden brown, about 30 minutes. Serve hot and enjoy.

note: I did substitute cheeses and used what I had in the fridge- cheddar, mozzarella, pepper jack.

Ingredients: I got the recipe here

  • 16 oz elbow macaroni, cooked (or other tubular pasta)
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 4 cups sharp cheddar cheese shredded
  • 2 cups Gruyere cheese shredded
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups panko crumbs
  • 4 tbsp butter melted
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese shredded
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika (or regular paprika)