First of all, thank you! You have made 2019 the best year yet for SweetPhi.com and I can’t wait to see what 2020 will bring! I love writing this post because it always allows me to step back and reflect on the fun we all had throughout the previous year. I am sharing the top recipes of 2019 and also including some of my biggest highlights and failures of the year below!
- Crockpot Potatoes – made in a slow cooker and the recipe has a top tip that makes these the best potato recipe to make
- Spinach Salad & Dressing recipe – this is a great salad recipe, but an even better dressing recipe! It’s always the best when you know just what goes in to your food, so I love when I make my own dressings.
- Greek Chickpea Salad in a Jar – I am focusing more on packing my lunches for the work week and salads in a jar are one of my favorite ways to do that!
- Easy Baked Brie Appetizer – you simply cannot beat this recipe because it is ONLY TWO INGREDIENTS!
- Chicken Enchilada Casserole – I make this meal pretty regularly and prep ahead of time to keep in the freezer for any super busy day when I don’t have time to make a great dinner.
- Burger Seasoning Mix – This recipe is a super easy way to take a burger from bland to amazing in a few incredibly simple steps.
- Eggless Waffles – these are seriously the best. Ben loves to make them and eat them, so you can almost always find them in my freezer.
- Instant Pot Hungarian Goulash – a dish that holds a special place in my heart and reminds me of my childhood.
- Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo – A 5 ingredient dish that is put together in an Instant Pot, making dinner a breeze on any night of the week.
- Cuban Air Fryer Empanadas – I am going to work on making more thing sin my air fryer in 2020 because they always turn out so great, like these 5 ingredient empanadas!
- Chicken Spaghetti Casserole – This is another recipe that I made in my Instant Pot and everyone in the family loved!
- Instant Pot Baked Potato Soup – Are you sensing a theme here? The Instant Pot was very popular in 2019! I am still amazed at what a delicious, healthy soup you can have for any meal, without having to cook it all day long.
- Fish Stick Wraps – A great after school snack that only takes 5 ingredients to put together.
- Iced Salted Honey Latte – I love making my own coffee at home, in an attempt to spend a little less at Starbucks!
- Freezer to crockpot Jambalaya – Another great freezer meal that can simply be taken out of the freezer and put directly into your slow cooker.
And because it was such a good year, I’m sharing two more bonus recipes that just missed the top 15, but were too tasty not to include!
- Iced Maple Latte – like I said, more homemade coffee!
- Cheddar Bacon Ranch Pinwheels – these are seriously to die for! They’re so addicting and perfect for a party, but can also be made for a light lunch.
Now that you’ve had a chance to peak through all of the best of 2019, did any of your favorites make the list?
It’s easy to get lost in how perfect everything looks online. But remember, there are plenty of fails to go along with the successes you see photographed.
This year, I attempted to make an Instant Pot cheesecake with a gingerbread crust. I had a friend who’s sister in law swears by making cheesecake in her Instant Pot, so I thought I’d give it a try. It certainly did not work! Basically, the cheesecake exploded in the Instant Pot. It was so vile looking and just a complete failure (picture below is of all the cute gingerbread people that were a casualty lol).
I was doing a photoshoot for a client, where I had to bring cooked meatloaf to my studio. Well, I put it in my car to transport it and it dripped all over the back of my car. Let me tell you just how terrible it STUNK!
Earlier this year, I made these Sun Butter Cookie Bars that tasted so good, but a little known effect of sun butter is that, over time exposed to air, sun flower seeds turn green. Eeekk! So, these delicious kid-friendly bars actually turn a funky color over time. But, don’t worry, they still taste great!
I’ve made eggless waffles countless numbers of times, so I wanted to finally photograph them for the blog. When I sat down to make them, the recipe kept turning out incorrectly and I couldn’t figure out why. I would try and try, but the waffles were turning out floppy and just not quite right and tasted bitter. Well, it turns out that I added baking soda instead of baking powder. I was very pregnant at the time and just wrote the recipe down wrong. One ingredient makes all the difference!
In the wins column, I have a tote bag project that I’ve been loving – you can read more on that below. But before I counted it as a success, it was a major fail. Basically, I ordered the first set of bags, but when I received them they looked nothing like the online picture! They were so small and the handles were way too short. I was so disappointed, so I re-ordered from a different site and now I love them! It’s always great when you can turn a fail into a highlight! Read on for a few more of my favorite success from 2019.
I love this recipe for Tiramisu Layer Cake, but the pictures are pretty outdated so I wanted to do a recipe re-do. I attempted this, just the other day actually. Welp, the egg whites wouldn’t beat properly, which pretty much sets up the whole recipe for failure. I figured I would try to bake the cakes anyway, so I threw them in the oven. Let’s just say the did not work. They were delicious tasting, but the didn’t rise the way they were supposed to. Oh, I also forgot the almond and vanilla extract until the batter was already in the pan, so I had to mix it in while in the pans! I will try it again and can’t wait to share
Every year, the local power company comes out with a cookbook with a whole bunch of Christmas recipes. I always get so excited to try some of the recipes. This year, I read about a delicious-sounding S’mores bar. The recipe was filled with ooeey gooey marshmallows and chocolate, plus they looked festive with red and green M&M’s on top, so what could go wrong!? Well, they just didn’t taste right. I tried to modify the recipe, but they didn’t ever pull together. Can’t win ’em all!
But, even though there were hilarious fails, I was also able to celebrate quite a few highlights that I’m very proud of!
I know I mention the tote bags in the fail section, but they were also one of my favorite highlights of the year! I have been wanting to create something as a thank you to my loyal readers and the tote bags are just that. Read here to find out how you can get one for yourself!
I had a long term partnership with Pick n’ Save this year. Each month, for five months, I created and photographed a recipe. I think my favorite was was these amazing red wine brownies. Another favorite main meal recipe is a super simple one pot sausage and rice casserole, I loved all the recipes!
An idea that actually came from Nick, I launched the Catching up with the Kelnhofers series on the blog. It’s so fun to share a bit of our crazy little life with you all each week!
This year, I was chosen as one of the winners of a small business month challenge that I had entered in April. As part of being chosen as a winner, I won a trip to Austin and got to meet Noah Kagan. Read all about the contest and my trip here.
I had TWINS! It’s hard to believe that was just this year as time has just been flying! But welcoming Freddie and Frankie into our lives has made our family complete and so full of joy.
I wrote my second cookbook! I was so excited to write the Baby Food Maker cookbook, but even more excited when I was also awarded the contract to photograph the book. If you didn’t know, this is my second cookbook. My first is all about Fast and Easy Five Ingredient Recipes.
One last exciting thing is that I started incorporating more videos into my work this year, so you see recipes with videos (like here, here, and here). The’ll all be featured on my new YouTube channel (that I’d love for you to subscribe to) this coming year!
So, that’s a wrap folks! It has been a great year for SweetPhi.com and I owe so much of that to each of you! Thank you so much for reading, making my recipes and following along. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!