How to more than survive life with 2 under 2

It has been quite some time since my last post.  As you can imagine, I did not wait forever for my daughter.  Kristiana Joy was born on May 22nd (11 joyful days of waiting) and she has been a wonderful gift from God!

I am blessed to be the mother 2 lovely children under 2–they are in fact Irish twins (less than a year apart).  I have heard the phrase “You sure have your hands full” more than I can count.  Often, my response is what catches people off guard.  Rachel Jankovic said the best way to respond to the shock of lots of children or children close together is that of joy.  Per her idea in the book Mom Enough (short, encouraging, manageable chapters–I highly recommend to all moms) I always say “Yes, but my hands are full of good things.”

So, how do I successfully function in society without collapsing on the floor? I have much to learn, but here are a few of my essentials in order to thrive with young children.
1. Take time each day in God’s Word.

It is easy for me to feel busy and task oriented from my early morning rise to when I finally hit the pillow.  I know that all my work is in vain if I do not fill my soul with God.  If possible, one of the first things I do is read my Bible.  It sets the tone for the rest of my day.  It may be the audio Bible, or just one or two Psalms, but I will fail to be a good wife and mom without this.  George Miller says it best, “The first great and primary business to which I ought to attend every day is to have my soul happy in the Lord.” Check out a great Bible Reading plan from Christ Church-Moscow that I along with many others are just starting:

Bible Reading Challenge 



2. Make a plan 

My husband often quotes Benjamin Franklin in saying “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” How true this is in my life! In order to be successful during the day, I need to make a plan. I am getting better at this, but I have so much more to learn. When it comes to planning, start broad and get more narrow. List out what NEEDS to get done for your family to prosper (meals made, laundry done, etc.).  I like to look at an average week and put the needs in first.  

Next, add in things that should get done every week like mopping the floor, cleaning the bathroom, washing sheets and give them a place in the calendar. We all have more time than we think and it is amazing how much of that can be wasted when we don’t have a plan or go between many different tasks, but I’ll get to that in a bit… Ultimately, a plan gives structure, and we humans thrive on structure.  My children do SO much better when they are scheduled.  I am a firm believer that schedules for children are a grace, not a curse.  God gave us his law (order and structure) as a loving thing.  He created a world of order and design, we should also love order and design! Especially with young children, you must leave room for margin, but having a plan truly helps kids thrive.  My son knows when nap time comes and he has developed a nice internal clock of our typical days.  He usually even brings me his shoes minutes before we go on our daily walk!  It keeps me accountable to do the walk, to be sure!  

Here is an example of a template I like for weekly planning:

Weekly Plan Template

When people say they like to just “wing it” that is usually because they simply didn’t make a plan.  In all of this, we must be flexible and gracious, though, so let’s look to my next point.
3. Surrender your plan
Plans are important. Yes. However, we do not live in a perfect world and often, our perfect plans will fail. It is so important to surrender our plans and be willing to adjust when circumstances arise. I have the temptation to simply throw out the plan when things happen, but this is not a good impulse either.  Love the plan and embrace God’s providences as they come.  I think this point makes sense, but it is a huge challenge for me as a mom!  We need to remember that we are finite people and love that we have a God that is infinite.  Relying on His grace makes it much more joyful when our plans fall apart.  We always have His grace to continue our work joyfully in whatever flawed state we find ourselves.  

4. Finish the task you started

I would be lying if I said that I am good at this.  It makes sense that this is one of my points in this blog post–I need the reminder! As a mom and as a social extrovert I constantly have ideas running through my head.  

“How can I squeeze time with people in today?” 

“Ooh! I was gonna put the chicken in, I’ll go do that quick.”

“I better finish that blog post. I’ll do that now and come back to the laundry.”

That last one is actually the case right now.  I don’t always follow this principle and it always makes for a messier house and a more frantic me!  This principle may be impossible when you have a crying infant that wants to feed early (yes, this has happened to me many times).  Leave margin in this and grace for “life” to happen.  Even with unexpected interruptions, it is so good to discipline ourselves to go back to the task we started.  How much better is it to have all the laundry folded rather than some folded, as well as half of the dishes washed and half of the kids toys put away.  Conquer each task FULLY–your house will be cleaner and, trust me, you will get more accomplished in the long run.  

5. Meal prep

Save yourself the trouble of constantly thinking what are we going to eat today?  Prep your meals ahead of time in batches.  I may have to do an entire post on the practical side of this.  My family does meal prep for the week on Sunday nights. We batch cook chicken, chop it up and put it into a large container.  I make egg bake ahead of time so our breakfasts are set.  If you like veggies that need chopping, do this as well!  


Here is an example of breakfast:

Portioned egg bake (2 eggs, veggies and spices) and a handful of strawberries. Delicious!  The prep takes time, but if you do it all at once, you have much less work during the week.  Trust me, it makes life so much easier!  I can be creative in the kitchen with dinner, but my lunches look very much the same.  In this season of life, that’s okay by me!  

Meal prep also helps with balancing a budget.  We use everything we buy each week because I plan and portion it out.  In addition to prepping meals, writing out your weekly dinner menu can be very helpful.  Set aside time every week for meal planning and meal prepping.  Your schedule will look much different than mine, but make sure you find a time that works for your family and do it!  It saves me so much time and energy during my week.  I wish I had started this earlier in life!

6. Rise and Rest well

Ask any doctor or health expert how to cure exhaustion and they will likely first say “get more sleep.” That’s great.  How?  Plan for it!  Sense a theme here?  Hold your family accountable to getting good rest by setting bedtimes for your children and for you/your spouse.  My husband and I figured out what works best for our family and when we actually follow this, we feel so much more successful going into a new day.  The average adult needs 7-9 hours of sleep each night.  If you have a little one that needs to nurse, this may mean taking a short nap during the day to make up for lost sleep.  A good night multivitamin can help with getting to sleep and sleeping deeply.  If you are looking for a high quality option, try Mary Ruth’s Nighttime Liquid vitamin.

Along with resting well is rising well!  Plan a time that works well for your body to wake.  Usually this is not when crying children wake you.  In order to be successful, I need to be up before they wake.  When this doesn’t happen, my morning is so thrown off.  Of course, kids may wake up earlier when teething or changing nap schedules, but those are exceptions, not the rule. 

Practical advice? Set an alarm on your phone reminding you when you need to get ready for bed or use the “Bedtime” feature if you have an iPhone. 

7. Practice Gratitude

Nothing is more powerful than a thankful heart.  I need this bit of wisdom everyday in order to be a successful mom of littles. I often fail here, but know that God will give me his grace and has already given me all that I need in Christ to work out a heart of thankfulness.  1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 says “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”  God purposes that we turn to Him in thankfulness in all circumstances.  Yes, that means we should be thankful when our house is a mess, when we have changed 20 diapers in one day, when our husband gets a bonus at work, and even if he loses his job.  We can rejoice in season and out of season, when we experience joy or unthinkable grief.  I implore you to practice gratitude where you are.  My life surely is full, but if I fill my mouth with gratitude, my heart cannot help but be grateful.  If my mouth complains and grumbles about “how difficult it is to have kids so close” or “how I wish I could just do something for me” my heart will truly shrivel and I will not love my family well.  

So friend, take these principles for what they are.  Know that it is only by the grace of God that we can bring anything good to our families and friends.  We need Christ for ALL of life.  He is working in the mundane and the practical. He cares about your heart as well as what you do with your hands.  Love your family this way and having 2 under 2 or truly any circumstance God calls you to can be a joy and a privilege. 

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Joy in the Waiting and in the Mundane

This post will feel a bit different than my typical posts, but it is definitely what is on my heart as of late. 

Today is May 16th, and my daughter is due anytime, technically past due according to her estimated due date of May 11th.

I find that often I am tempted to grow anxious over things that do not go according to plan or do not go in my expected timeline.  My daughter will be here in God’s best timing, not when my phone app says she is “overdue.”  I know this in theory, but practically I have to fight my tendency in this and in many things to think I ultimately have any control over circumstances in my life.  It always amuses me to look back and think that I ever did have that control!

The Proverbs 31 woman is marked with many amazing qualities, but one that often strikes me is that she laughs at the time to come (vs. 25).  The future is not bleak for the woman who trusts in God’s timing.  She can go about laboring (her work) in her home and for her family with joy knowing that the future, all that will come to pass, whether trial or ease can be a source of laughter.  Why is this?  She trusts in God for all seasons and finds peace in whatever is to be.

I often blog here about fun recipes or my essentials in my kitchen and home.  These are wonderful things that I deeply enjoy and love to share with others.  However, none of these things truly have value without a mark of joy in them.  If I am miserable in preparing baby food, folding laundry, cleaning the floor, making my DIY toothpaste, or cooking lunch in the cast-iron, I cannot actually be a giver of life to my family.  I am waiting for my daughter’s arrival, but there is much I can do until she is here!  I have a son to feed, interact with, care for and nurture.  I have a husband to pray for and encourage in his work.  I have lunch to put out on the table in the next hour.  Our lunch may look much simpler today being that I am 5 days past 40 weeks, but it is still my delight.  Waiting should not be inactive.  If we find ourselves toiling in our minds over what could be or might have been, we will just grow increasingly anxious.  

We should know that we are limited creatures that will often fail.  My husband reminds me that failing well is important.  We will fail our families, our own expectations, and every day through sinful hearts, we will not meet God’s standards.  There is hope in our lack, however.  Christ gives us a reason to toil in joy and be thankful that we cannot do ANYTHING apart from his grace.  That should motivate us not towards laziness, but towards harder work.  It is easy for me to stay in my own mind thinking that I am not good enough, that I’m too tired to persevere, or that I just want the next stage of life to be here!  None of these thoughts give way to contentment and productivity.  Our families need us to recognize our lack, work hard in our strengths and grow in the areas in which we are weak.

I would encourage anyone, but especially women (who tend to grow anxious easily–trust me, I know!), to find joy in whatever place in life the Lord has you.  He tests us to see if our joy is in him or in ourselves.  I am waiting for my daughter to be here with pains in my hip and quite a bit of fatigue…can I wait in joy?  He may be asking you to wait much longer than you like to fill your womb.  You may be single, waiting for a wonderful man to lead and love you.  Do you trust God’s timing?  It is so much better than our own.  

I will leave you with this.  Whatever our God ordains is right (see the hymn). Rejoice in him and find contentment in the everyday and in the seasons of serious waiting.  How can we love others when our daily tasks feel like a grind?  Turn to God in thankfulness and ask him to give you the perfect joy of Christ.  Be marked as a strong woman who labors hard and laughs at the time to come.  

Laboring for joy with you all,

Emily

Recommended Readings:

The Rare Jewel of Christian ContentmentJeremiah Burroughs

Learning ContentmentNancy Wilson

Easy Homemade Baby Food

Making food from scratch takes time.
Making baby food from scratch takes time.
Both are worthy endeavors as long as you have a plan, ingredients and a bit of patience.
This post will give you step-by-step instruction on making homemade baby food easily and quickly. My ingredients can be changed in order to incorporate foods you want to feed to your children. 

Note
: I advocate introducing many foods to children. Puréed packets are very popular and convenient. As long as your children become interested and introduced in solid foods as well, I see no problem with purées. In fact, it makes it very easy to hide foods they may not like whole (my son will not eat peas, but loves them in a purée!).

Making puréed baby-food from scratch:

You will need: 

  • 6 med/large organic carrots
  • 2 1/2 cups organic frozen peas
  • 1-2 cups of organic mixed greens
  • 2-3 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa (optional)


First, choose organic vegetables. I picked carrots, peas and mixed greens for this purée. You can choose anything or combination that would go well together. For inspiration, walk through the baby food aisles. You will likely be very surprised!

Cut up 6 medium to large carrots with the skin on.  Add to a sauce pan with water and bring to a boil. Cook for 15 minutes or so (they can still be slightly crunchy for blending).


Now add in 2 1/2 cups of frozen peas to the carrots and cook for 5 minutes.


After 5 minutes, grab your handy Vitamix or blender and scoop up the peas and carrots.  You will use a good amount of the water, but save some and add in if the mixture is too thick.



Now, I add my organic greens to the top.  Add enough to fill the Vitamix to the top. 


You will need the tamper to mix the veggies into a nice purée.   Blend until mixed well on setting 3-4.

Next, add in a few tablespoons of coconut oil to make the mix more creamy and add healthy fats!  This helps to balance out the mix and is a great choice for a first fat for a baby. 


You can keep it just veggie based, or add in cooked quinoa or rice.  I added about 1 cup of cooked quinoa and blended one last time.


Delicious! 


At this point you can divide up the mixture into small containers or freeze it in ice cubes.  I prefer to fill reusable packets so I can easily take them on the go or for a quick feeding.  I recommend Nature’s Little Squeeze brand.  You can find a variety pack of 6 on Amazon for $16.99.  


These packets fill from the bottom and have a strong seal.  Be sure not to overfill! 


You can see the contents in the continents on the back!


Store this purée up to a week in the fridge or several months in the freezer.


Your children will thank you and so will your bank account!  An average cost of a 4oz packet costs $1.29 each!  No thanks.

Knowing exactly what is in the packets/purées is also a plus.  I can have confidence that my son is eating healthy, delicious food and it only takes a bit of prep time each week.

If you don’t trust me, here is a picture of my son immediately after trying this purée for the first time.  Baby approved, folks.

6 Tips for Making Family Meals Happen

In this fast-paced society, we are often running from one activity to the next stopping at the drive-thru just to satisfy the hungry mouths of the kids in the mini-van.  It can be challenging to make the dinner table an important part of family life, but we should not forget the value of breaking bread and sitting together as a family.

So, in the midst of being busy and productive women, how can we prioritize gathering at the table?  Here are a few of my tips for keeping table time a priority in your family:
1. Plan one meal each day with the whole family


Life truly is busy!  Perhaps dinner may not be the best meal to gather if your husband works late or you have teenage children involved in activities.  Breakfast can be a wonderful time to gather and a great chance to employ some overnight oats or egg bake for the next morning!  Just choose a meal that works for your lifestyle and stick with it. 

2. Keep family time around the table

Great discussions can be had around the table.  It may take time to create the habit, but it is a sweet time to disconnect from other distractions and be in fellowship with one another.  After dinner and before clearing dishes away, our family has started employing a liturgy where we read the Bible together, discuss what we read and then sing a few songs or hymns.  You may want to work through a classic novel or favorite book series as food is digesting. 

3. Meal Plan for the week ahead


This isn’t always the easiest for me, but when I do meal plan I find that I buy only what I need for the week and I actually want to cook the food on my list.  Schedule out 30 minutes to meal plan for the week ahead (Sunday night or Monday morning) and try following your plan exactly.  Without a plan, it is easy to order pizza or run to grab fast-food.  Save money and time by planning your weekly meals!

4. Do not over-schedule around meals

If you have 10 things left on your list and dinner is an hour away, you probably will not get it all done and dinner will be frantic, disorganized and likely come late to the table.  Simplify your schedule if possible and leave adequate time to cook a meal.  If this is not possible, employ the Instant Pot, Crockpot, or use freezer meals.  

5. Communicate with your family/friends

Wives, talk to your husbands about prioritizing one meal a day with the whole family.  You may have to undo past habits as a family in order to implement this new one.  That’s okay, just keep checking in and work towards consistency!  If you are single, but have a roommate, check their schedule and at the least, plan to do a meal once or twice a week.  Even scheduling to sit down to a delicious meal with a friend on occasion can be refreshing after a long day.   

6. Make the table look beautiful

It is always more inviting to sit down to a beautiful table.  Fresh flowers or a candle as a centerpiece can be a great start.  I love to run my Young Living diffuser with an inviting scent near our table for 10 minutes before food is served.  If you need inspiration, I recommend Edith Schaeffer’s The Hidden Art of Homemaking.  She devotes an entire chapter to flower/table arrangements.  The entire book is a wonderful read!

This list is by no means exhaustive! Prioritize time around the table and create a family culture that flourishes while the busyness of the day fades away.   Begin giving your home a resting place each day where hearts are gladdened and bellies are filled. 

Paleo-friendly Family Taco Night

Family dinners can be a time for immense creativity.  However, not every evening leading up to dinner allows our family the time we need to make an extraordinary meal.  I have loved tacos my whole life and pregnancy only amplifies my love for them.  They are a staple in our family, but often we find that loading up on flour tortillas is not extremely helpful.  

How can you make a delicious taco night and feel good about every ingredient on the table?  Here’s how we do taco night!


Yes, those are homemade tortillas, but no, they are not that challenging to make!

The beef is grass-fed and well seasoned and the toppings are simple and fresh.  This meal can be done in 30-45 minutes, easily!

Let’s start with the tortillas. Everything you see here will make delicious, paleo and protein packed tortillas. I use Stupid Easy Paleo‘s Recipe here and have found that out of all the paleo tortillas I have tried, this one is the quickest, easiset and always tastes amazing. I employ the use of my Vitamix here for mixing and pouring and the 8-in cast-iron for cooking. 


To begin, gather the ingredients above.  In the Vitamix, combine the eggs, water and melted coconut oil (the liquid ingredients).


Pulse on setting 1-2 a few times until mixed together.


Next, measure out the dry ingredients of tapioca flour and coconut flour.  


Once well combined, the mixture should be runny and look like this…


For the first tortilla, grease the 8 inch cast-iron slightly with coconut oil and turn on medium heat.  Pour a thin layer of tortilla batter onto the pan and tilt until it is even.


Cook time will range from 30 seconds to 1 minute.  The batter should easily form like a tortilla and pull up.  Flip it and cook on the other side for about 1 minute.  


Repeat until all the batter is gone!  This recipe and my list below is doubled from Stupid Easy Paleo whose recipe only makes 3 tortillas. My other adaptation is using tapioca flour instead of arrowroot

Protein-packed Paleo Tortilla List (6 tortillas) :

  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tsp melted coconut oil
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 2 tsp coconut flour
  • A few shakes of sea salt

*This recipe is for 6 tortillas.  They are filling and hold ingredients super well.  You may want to double what I have here if you have a larger family.  We often do a couple tortillas with filling and make a taco salad if we want more food.*

Now onto the meat…

Heat up an enamel-coated cast-iron skillet and add a Tbsp of avocado or olive oil.  I highly recommend Le Creuset if you feel like investing in a great kitchen item. 

I made a big batch this time and combined 1.5 lbs of grass-fed beef and 1 lb of ground venison.  YUM!


Begin to brown the meat slightly and get ready to add seasonings!


I used the last of my Penzeys Original Taco seasoning for this recipe.  You can make your own as well! Wellness Mama has a great recipe that my family loves!


I usually test the meat and add salt or pepper if needed.  Penzeys Taco Seasoning is fantastic, though, and usually doesn’t need much added.  However, I always add a little salsa to the meat to give it a fun flavor.  Fresh is great if you have it.  I used some Salsa Verde from Trader Joes this time around:



Once the meat is mostly cooked, reduce the heat and stir every few minutes.  In the meantime, assemble your ingredients!

We love fresh veggies, so for our taco night I cut a red pepper, romaine lettuce, a white onion, and cherry tomatoes.  I also love avocado, so that is a must on tacos for me!

Grab the salsa jar you used for your meat and use it for a topping–perfect pairing!

Lastly, cheese and sour cream can be delicious if you can tolerate dairy.  We use goats milk plain yogurt as “sour cream” and crumbled goat cheese as a topping.  There is less lactose than cow’s milk and both have a delicious, strong flavor.  

Here is the full taco meat recipe and toppings list for reference.

Tasty Taco Meat (feeds 6-8)

  • 1 Tbsp Avocado or Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs of Grass-fed Beef
  • 1 lb of Ground Venison
  • 3 Tbsp of Penzeys Taco Seasoning (or homemade mixture)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 3/4 cup of canned or fresh salsa of choice 
  1. Heat oil in a large enamel-coated cast-iron pot and begin browning the meat.
  2. Add Taco Seasoning after browning begins and add salt and pepper if needed
  3. Add salsa to almost fully-cooked meat.  You may have some excess liquid, but do not drain all of it off.  The amazing flavor will be there!  With high-quality meat, you want to preserve as much of the flavor.  The fat and water coming off is not harmful to your health.
  4. Chop up your favorite veggies and grab any other desired toppings.  For example: tomatoes, peppers, onions, lettuce, cheese, sour cream, avocado, salsas. Enjoy with Paleo tortillas or as a taco salad!

Enjoy family taco night!  We make this just about ever week and enjoy our left-overs just as much.

Gluten-free Sweet Potato Bacon Perogies

I was feeling ambitious this morning and craving something savory/sweet.  My husband and I recently went to our small town Christkindlsmarkt, a Christmas market with German inspired vendors and food.  Our favorite dish was the potato and cheese perogie.  I got to thinking, could I make my own version of this?  My mom shared a grain-free recipe with me and I slightly adapted from there.  Here is a link to the original recipe:

Ditch the Wheat Perogies

My adaptations worked great and I will give some helpful insight.  I did not take as many pictures as I would have liked, so for the dough, check out my changes, but you can find pictures on the link above.
First, steam or bake a medium sized sweet potato until tender all the way through.  I used my new Instant Pot to do this!  If you have one, put 3/4 cup water at the bottom, and set the sweet potato on the trivet inside.  Slice a few holes in the potato so it cooks well. 

Close the lid and set to steam for 10 minutes and let it work.  Let it naturally release steam for 20 or so minutes.


Now, cut 2 strips of thick bacon and fry them in a skillet. Set bacon pieces aside.

Next, cut up 1/2 of a red onion and fry in bacon grease.  Combine bacon and sautéed onion.

Grab the sweet potato and add 3/4 cup to a bowl.  Add half the bacon/onion mix and put the rest back in the skillet. 

In the bowl, add 1 Tbsp ghee or butter and a splash of heavy cream.  Mix well.


Now it is time for the dough!

I found that you have to be precise here.  I used arrowroot instead of tapioca flour, but it worked great.  

Combine 1 cup arrowroot flour, 1 egg, 1 Tbsp olive oil, and shake of salt in a large bowl.

Work with a spatula until it becomes crumbly.  Then knead with your hands in a bowl for at least 5 minutes.  It takes a while but eventually becomes like play-dough and is not sticky.

Roll it onto a marble cutting board into a long strip (about 2-3 in thick) and cut into 11 pieces.  Roll each piece into a ball.  When ready, put in plastic wrap and press down with a flat object.  I used our coffee lid!  

Before the next step, start boiling a large pot of water.


Fill the flattened dough piece with sweet potato mixture (1-2 tsp size) but do not over fill!  Gather the ends together with the plastic wrap and press the edges of both sides with a fork.  I did all mine with the same piece of plastic wrap.  As long as you work fast, your dough should not dry out.  

When all the perogies are ready, drop into the water.  Let them rise to the top and flip over once.  Give them 3-4 minutes to boil.  Turn on your skillet with the onions and bacon and add a bit of oil if needed.  Remove the perogies from the boiling water with a basket strainer and put into the skillet for 3 minutes until slightly crisp.  Serve with the bacon and onion and sprinkle goat cheese over the top!


This batch will make about 11 perogies.  I had leftover filling so I may make more dough next time.  You can omit the goat cheese and heavy cream if you are dairy-free.  The flavor was amazing and they are very challenging to resist.  Try this out for your next family get-together over the Christmas season.  Be sure you don’t eat them all first!

Spicy Garlic Chicken Thighs

At our house, we enjoy hearty, delicious meals.  God gave us spices, oils, and fresh ingredients that can completely change the taste of a dish.  This recipe is simple, but the flavors work so well together.  Inspired by my aunt Kara’s cooking and my mom’s love for a depth of flavor, this is my very favorite version of chicken thighs.

You will need the following ingredients:


The List:

1 package of chicken thighs (6-8 thighs)

Cayenne Pepper

Sea Salt or Seasoning Salt

Black Pepper (or Black Pepper Vitality Oil)

Olive oil

Fresh Garlic

Start by preheating your oven to 375. 

I like to use fresh chicken thighs, but frozen is fine as long as the meat has fully thawed.  Pat down the thighs with a paper towel until try and place skin-side up in a baking dish.

Next, work in the spices!  Cayenne pepper and salt first (use seasoning salt if you have it!).  Be sure to get both sides of the chicken with the seasonings.  I like to put a little seasoning under the skin as well!  Then sprinkle with black pepper on the top.


For 6 thighs, you will use 2-3 garlic cloves.  Dice them into small chunks and sprinkle over the top of the chicken.  I like the  small chunks for pops of garlic goodness.  

Next, drizzle olive oil over the chicken.  Don’t be shy about the amount.  It should coat the chicken well!  Work it around both sides of the meat until well covered.


Cook at 375 degrees for 40 minutes on the middle rack.  Cook uncovered for a crispy, delicious skin!



Yum!  Serve over rice and with a veggie of choice.  Be sure to spoon up the oil/juices.  The flavors are fantastic, but I’ll let you be the judge 🙂
Spicy Garlic Chicken Thighs Recipe

  • 6-8 Chicken Thighs 
  • 1 Tbsp Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Sea salt or Seasoning Salt
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 2-3 Garlic Cloves
  • 1/3 cup Olive Oil

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. 

  1. Remove chicken thighs from package and pat down dry with a paper towel.  Place skin-side up in a baking dish.
  2. Shake cayenne pepper and salt on both sides of the meat.  Season under the skin as well for extra flavor.  Sprinkle black pepper or use 3 drops of Black Pepper Vitality Oil on the top. 
  3. Dice the garlic into small chunks and sprinkle over the top of the chicken.  Liberally apply olive oil on the top and move chicken to coat all sides.  
  4. Bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes on the middle rack.  Cook uncovered for crispy chicken.  Serve over rice and pour the oil sauce over the chicken for a rich flavor.