A Look Back on 2018


New Year’s Day is right around the corner, which means we are saying goodbye to 2018. It was an epic year here on Lemon & Mocha. I shared 124 new recipes with you all! I want to thank all you readers, whether you are family, friend, fellow blog buddy, food enthusiast, or just stopping by. All your comments and love within this little community space make all the hard work worth it! A special call-out to my Dad who makes my day and still emails me after every post! I especially want to give a shout-out to my husband, Matt, who continues to be the most supportive and enthusiastic cheerleader of Lemon & Mocha. Looking ahead to 2019, I have so many exciting recipes I cannot wait to share with you all. I’m posting all healthy recipes for the entire month of January to help kick off a great start to the new year – and to help Matt and I detox from our December cookie diet! Below, I’m sharing the top ten most visited recipes that were newly posted in 2018. After that I’ll share my top ten posts from 2018, with a superlative twist.

10. Crispy Baked Apple Pie Bites with a Chai Vanilla Dipping Sauce

Crispy Baked Apple Pie Bites with a Chai Vanilla Dipping Sauce  |  Lemon & Mocha

9. Irish Cheddar, Bacon and Potato Muffins

Irish Cheddar, Bacon & Potato Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

8. Zucchini Noodles and Chicken Sausage in Vodka Sauce

Zucchini Noodles & Chicken Sausage in Vodka Sauce  |  Lemon & Mocha

7. Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread

Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread  |  Lemon & Mocha

6. Lemon Blackberry Icebox Cake

Lemon Blackberry Icebox Cake  |  Lemon & Mocha

5. Elote Hot Dogs

Elote Hot Dogs  |  Lemon & Mocha

4. Churro Waffles with Raspberry Sauce

Churro Waffles with Raspberry Sauce  |  Lemon & Mocha

3. Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad  |  Lemon & Mocha

2. Aunt Elaine’s Dirt Cake

Aunt Elaine's Dirt Cake  |  Lemon & Mocha

1. Hawaiian Barbecue Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Hawaiian Barbecue Slow Cooker Pulled Pork  |  Lemon & Mocha

I have to say, the internet picked some pretty delicious recipes! Since I posted so many recipes in 2018 it is impossible for me to pick my favorites. So instead, I created superlative categories and I’m sharing my top ten below.

Recipe I’m most excited that I finally shared: Nutella Stuffed Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Nutella Stuffed Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Best Photos: Beet Donuts with a Brown Butter Strawberry Rhubarb Glaze

Beet Donuts with a Brown Butter Strawberry Rhubarb Glaze  |  Lemon & Mocha

What I want for dinner every night: Thai Peanut Chicken Tacos

Thai Peanut Chicken Tacos  |  Lemon & Mocha

What I’m most likely to make next week: Baked Turkey Pesto Meatballs over Lemon Cauliflower Rice

Baked Pesto Turkey Meatballs over Lemon Cauliflower Rice  |  Lemon & Mocha

Most creative recipe: Lemon Cookie Butter Cheesecake Parfaits

Lemon Cookie Butter Cheesecake Parfaits  |  Lemon & Mocha

Recipe guaranteed to get eaten instantly at a party: Cheesy Pesto Bread with Crispy Prosciutto

Cheesy Pesto Bread with Crispy Prosciutto  |  Lemon & Mocha

Cutest recipe: Beach Crab Cupcakes

Beach Crab Cupcakes  |  Lemon & Mocha

Favorite Healthy Bite: Fall Spinach and Arugula Salad with Tahini Dressing

Fall Spinach and Arugula Salad with Tahini Dressing  |  Lemon & Mocha

Dish I wish I didn’t have to share with Matt: Chicken Schnitzel and Pesto Spaetzle with a Cauliflower Sun-dried Tomato Sauce

Chicken Schnitzel & Pesto Spaetzle with a Cauliflower Sun-dried Tomato Sauce  |  Lemon & Mocha

What I want for breakfast tomorrow: Raspberry Peach Turnovers with a Fresh Raspberry Glaze

Raspberry Peach Turnovers with a Fresh Raspberry Glaze  |  Lemon & Mocha

Happy New Year, everyone!

Muffin of the Month Round-up

Muffin of the Month Round-up  |  Lemon & Mocha

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! The year is winding down and just last week I shared the final muffin recipe for the Muffin of the Month. For those of you who are just tuning in, Food Network Magazine posted a Muffin of the Month article in their January 2018 issue that had a different muffin recipe for each month of the year. They all looked so good that I decided to make them each month, take photos and write up my thoughts along with the recipe. I did veer off course for the November and December Food Network muffins and instead made alternate recipes since the Food Network ones didn’t appeal to me. It was a fun project and something I looked forward to baking (and gifting extras to friends!) each month. I thought since I diligently posted the muffin recipe each month that it deserved a send-off through this quick Muffin of the Month round-up.

Pomegranate Orange Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

January: Pomegranate Orange Muffins

The year kicked off with a bright citrus muffin packed with clementine flavor. I might have to make these again this January with some raspberries instead of the pomegranates!

Double Chocolate Salted Caramel Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

February: Double Chocolate Salted Caramel Muffins

Oh, I was in love with these muffins! I am chocolate obsessed so I was in heaven. The flakes of salt on top were the perfect touch.

 Irish Cheddar, Bacon & Potato Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

March: Irish Cheddar, Bacon and Potato Muffins

Who knew savory muffins were so amazing? These cheesy muffins were a favorite for both Matt and I.

Carrot-Coconut Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

April: Carrot-Coconut Muffins

Although these muffins looked adorable, they were a little disappointing. I wanted more carrot flavor and definitely more coconut flavor. Does anyone else have it ingrained in their head after watching Holiday Baking Championship and Christmas Cookie Challenge that if you promise a flavor it really has to deliver?

Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

May: Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Muffins

I had to adapt this one a bit since it called for an oat topping and I’m allergic to oats, but I could not have been more excited about the final result. These are moist and have this outrageous brown sugar topping. I’m definitely making these muffins again next rhubarb season!

S'mores Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

June: S’mores Muffins

More chocolate involved and this time marshmallow fluff, too, so I was already swooning. Add in the graham flavored moist muffin base and ding, ding! This one was a definite favorite.

Lemon Poppy Seed Zucchini Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

July: Lemon Poppy Seed Zucchini Muffins

The crispy sugar topping on these muffins was a home run and the zucchini helped keep them very moist. However, they fell into a bit of the April muffin dilemma, which is that they needed more lemon flavor!

Blueberry Nectarine Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

August: Blueberry Nectarine Muffins

My family was literally calling dibs on these juicy and sweet muffins. If that won’t make you try them then I don’t know what else to say! I can’t wait to make these again with some in-season nectarines.

Peanut Butter & Jelly Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

September: Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins

A literal peanut butter and jelly sandwich turned into a muffin. Crazy! Yet, so delicious, especially if you’re like me and love a classic pb&j.

Apple Pumpkin Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

October: Apple Pumpkin Muffins

This is where they started to let me down a little. The cooked apples on top were delicious, but there was no pumpkin to be found anywhere! Especially since I love my go-to pumpkin bread recipe, it was difficult for me to get excited about these.

Double Chocolate Pecan Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

November: Double Chocolate Pecan Muffins

Since I wasn’t feeling the November Food Network recipe, I decided to adapt the February muffins since I loved the chocolate base and stuff them with spiced pecans. The chocolate in these is so good.

Healthy Gingerbread Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

December: Healthy Gingerbread Muffins

I went out on a limb with these muffins and did some “healthy” baking. They were good – for a healthy muffin.

If I had to pick my top three, I would probably have to go with the March Irish Cheddar, Bacon and Potato Muffins, the May Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Muffins and the August Blueberry Nectarine Muffins. But those three might change depending on the day because the February Double Chocolate Salted Caramel Muffins, the June S’mores Muffins and the September Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins aren’t far behind! Food Network has posted a ‘something’ of the month in each January issue for the last couple years. The year before muffins it was cupcakes and the year before that it was birthday layer cakes. I hope they do it again and I can’t wait to find out what it will be! My guess is cookies! Maybe that is just wishful thinking because I love making, and eating, cookies. What do you think it might be?

Top 10 Most Popular Posts from 2014 and Other Musings

It has been an amazing year here in the Lemon & Mocha kitchen. We were thankful to be accepted into the BlogHer ad network, celebrated our first year blogiversary and even hit a record high on views in one day thanks to this mouthwatering BuzzFeed article. Milestones aside, we also made some of our favorite dishes, received some of our sweetest comments and continued to love sharing this journey with you all every single day. I thought it would be fun to look back and see what were the most popular posts during 2014 so I’ve gathered the top 10 for you here. It was nice to see some new treats as well as old classics make the list! I decided to get in on the action as well and post Lemon & Mocha’s 10 favorite new posts from 2014. Here we go!

Readers’ most popular 10 posts in 2014, starting at #10:

Chocolate Peppermint Fudge  |  Lemon & Mocha

10. Chocolate Peppermint Fudge. This holiday classic is festive and delicious.

Kale & Walnut Pesto Pasta with Lemon Shrimp  |  Lemon & Mocha
9. Kale and Walnut Pesto Pasta with Lemon Shrimp. This dish is SO GOOD. Make it now.

Mini Molten Chocolate Pecan Pies  |  Lemon & Mocha
8. Mini Molten Chocolate Pecan Pies. A recent post from 2014 and definitely an exciting treat.

Raspberries & Cream Sponge Cake Jelly Roll  |  Lemon & Mocha
7. Raspberries and Cream Sponge Cake Jelly Roll. My first ever jelly roll! It is easier than you think. Make your New Year’s resolution to try something new in the kitchen!

Spiked Hazelnut Hot Chocolate  |  Lemon & Mocha
6. Spiked Hazelnut Hot Chocolate. Nutella and booze? Sinfully delicious.

Baked Pistachio Crusted Chicken  |  Lemon & Mocha
5. Baked Pistachio Crusted Chicken. Certainly an old classic, but still a reader favorite.

Baked Crab Dip  |  Lemon & Mocha
4. Baked Crab Dip. I was excited to see my family’s recipe make the top 10 list as this gooey and tasty appetizer certainly deserves a spot.

Crispy Baked Kale Chips  |  Lemon & Mocha
3. Crispy Baked Kale Chips. Healthy and simple- perfect for the New Year!

Chocolate Ganache  |  Lemon & Mocha
2. Chocolate Ganache. This one photo says it all…

World's Smoothest Chocolate Fudge  |  Lemon & Mocha
1. World’s Smoothest Chocolate Fudge. A big thanks to my stepmom for sharing this recipe with me, and to her friend who shared it with her all those many years ago! And of course to Matt for taking this outrageous photo that makes me want to eat every last bite.

Lemon & Mocha’s favorite 10 recipes posted in 2014, starting at #10:

Coffee Ice Cream  |  Lemon & Mocha
10. Coffee Ice Cream. Still reigning as my favorite ice cream posted on Lemon & Mocha.

Chocolate Drizzled Peanut Butter Crunch Chocolate Brownies  |  Lemon & Mocha
9. Chocolate Drizzled Peanut Butter Crunch Chocolate Brownies. A late addition to the 2014 posts, but these bad boys snuck in with a bang.

New England Harvest Salad  |  Lemon & Mocha
8. New England Harvest Salad. I love recreating my favorite restaurant dishes and this perfect salad is no exception.

Turkey & Manchego Panini with Sun-dried Tomato Mayo  |  Lemon & Mocha
7. Turkey and Manchego Panini with Sun-Dried Tomato Mayo. This sandwich deserves a spot simply because I could eat it for days, and days, and days…

Crisp Gnocchi Salad with Shiitakes & Asparagus  |  Lemon & Mocha
6. Crisp Gnocchi Salad with Shiitakes and Asparagus. Another restaurant recreation and a check off my kitchen bucket list:  homemade gnocchi!

Pineapple Bread Pudding  |  Lemon & Mocha
5. Pineapple Bread Pudding. This dish is extremely high on my list of new favorite recipes for 2014, thus it only makes sense to be in the Lemon & Mocha top 10.

Hobo Egg Grilled Cheese  |  Lemon & Mocha
4. Hobo Egg Grilled Cheese. Two of my favorite foods together at last, and it tastes so good.

Summer Berry Trifle  |  Lemon & Mocha
3. Summer Berry Trifle. Not only was this addictive and light, but I absolutely love the pictures from this post!

New England Classic Quesadilla  |  Lemon & Mocha
2. New England Classic Quesadilla. A remake of the legendary Boston College sandwich. It got high marks for its deliciousness, as well as its ability to bring me right back to Hillside.

Chicken Cacciatore with Mushrooms & Artichokes  |  Lemon & Mocha
1. Chicken Cacciatore with Mushrooms and Artichokes.

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream  |  Lemon & Mocha

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream.

Smoked Salmon Dip  |  Lemon & Mocha

Smoked Salmon Dip.

Okay, so I know those are technically three posts, not one, but they all deserve the top spot. Not only are these three great recipes, but these were my three favorite posts of 2014. These three posts celebrate the amazing moms in my life and I loved getting to share them with my readers.

So that’s all, folks. Farewell, 2014! You were great, but we’re moving on to even bigger and better things in 2015! Happy New Year!

Lemon & Mocha Announcement!

I’ve never done a non-food post here on Lemon & Mocha, other than my very first introduction message, but I have some very exciting news to share that I thought deserved its own space here on Lemon & Mocha. I’m very bursting-at-the-seams happy to announce that this past weekend Matt proposed… and I said “yes”! Obviously :) I love Matt so much and can’t wait to start this new chapter of our lives.

Okay, news delivered! Now don’t worry, a very special recipe post will be coming up in a few hours, but I just had to share my excitement first!

P.S. Did I mention I’m excited?


Welcome to Lemon & Mocha! I have always been obsessed with food, but discovering food blogs brought it to a whole new level for me. In 2008 I discovered The Pioneer Woman and my desire to create my own food blog was born.

Sharing my kitchen adventures with my family and friends, fellow foodies and hungry web browsers was the dream, but I always had plenty of reasons not to get started. I didn’t have the time, or the right camera, or the extra money for the hosting or the space for all the kitchen supplies.

Four lame excuses, three different apartments and five years later, I decided it was time to go for it. So here we are! I hope you enjoy :-). To learn more about my crazy self and food fanatical ways, keep reading.