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5 Fun Ways to Pep Up Dinner Time

Turn mealtime into fun time
By
  • Mary Burich

April 7, 2020

Category
Story

If you’ve ever been a chef to the younger set, you know it’s no easy task. Food preferences and oh, so many other things to do can make it a challenge to get nutrition into pint-sized people. And as millions of families hunker down and shelter in place, the challenges of creating a happy home life while keeping everyone nourished have perhaps never been more top of mind.

Beau Coffron – often hailed as Lunchbox Dad – is well aware. He’s earned an enviable following by showing parents how to make picture-perfect meals that capture kids’ attention long enough that they’ll sit and eat. This round of recipes uses the always crowd-pleasing Hormel® Pepperoni to lure them in. As delicious as they are adorable, these offerings are sure to make your kids look forward to the fun mealtime can bring.

Recipes

Teddy Bear Pepperoni Pizza Bagels

  • Total Time

    10 minutes
  • Serves

    2
  • 1 bagel, sliced in half
  • 1/4 cup pizza sauce
  • 2 slices cheddar cheese
  • 2 slices HORMEL® Pepperoni
  • 4 HORMEL® Pepperoni Minis
  • 3 to 4 black olives

Instructions

Heat oven to 375°F. Spread each bagel half with pizza sauce. Cut cheese in the shape of a circle, if desired, and place 1 circle on each bagel half. Place 1 pepperoni slice in the middle of each bagel. Place 2 pepperoni minis at the top of each pepperoni slice for bear ears. Cut olives into 2 small round eyes, 1 triangle nose, 2 triangle ears and 2 quarter circles for the mouth for each bagel half. Arrange on top of pepperoni slice. Place on baking sheet. Bake 4 to 6 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Perfect Pepperoni Cream Cheese Dip

  • Total Time

    10 minutes
  • Serves

    2 cups
  • 1 (6-ounce) package HORMEL® Pepperoni, chopped
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon everything bagel seasoning
  • HORMEL® Pepperoni Minis, if desired
  • Celery sticks and/or crackers

Instructions

In bowl, combine chopped pepperoni, cream cheese, sour cream and seasoning, stirring until well mixed. Cover and refrigerate. Top with pepperoni minis, if desired. Serve dip on celery sticks or with crackers.

Monster Pepperoni Wraps

  • Total Time

    20 minutes
  • Serves

    1
  • 2 tablespoons ranch dressing
  • 1 spinach tortilla
  • 1 leaf romaine lettuce
  • 4 slices HORMEL® Pepperoni
  • 2 slices cheddar cheese
  • 3 slices cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons sliced bell peppers
  • 1 tablespoon sliced black olives

Instructions

Spread ranch dressing on tortilla. Layer lettuce, pepperoni, cheese, cucumber, bell peppers and olives on tortilla. Roll tightly and cut in half. Decorate each tortilla half with Monster Face ingredients.

Pizza Quesadillas

  • Total Time

    10 minutes
  • Serves

    1
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 2 (8-inch) flour tortillas
  • 1/2 (3.5-ounce) package HORMEL® Pepperoni Minis
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Toppings: sliced bell peppers, slices ripe olives, sliced green onions, as desired
  • Pizza sauce, if desired

Instructions

Spray skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Place 1 tortilla in skillet. Layer pepperoni and cheese over tortilla. Top with remaining tortilla. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown. Turn over; cook 3 to 4 minutes longer or until cheese is melted and tortilla is golden brown. Cut into quarters. Top with peppers, olives and green onions, as desired. Serve with pizza sauce on the side, if desired.

Air Fryer Pepperoni Poppers on a Stick

  • Total Time

    30 minutes
  • Serves

    10 poppers
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 (4-ounce) can diced green chilies, drained
  • 1 (13.8-ounce) refrigerated pizza dough
  • 80 slices HORMEL® Pepperoni, divided
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 30 snap peas
  • 30 grape tomatoes
  • 10 skewers

Instructions

Heat air fryer to 400°F. In bowl, combine cream cheese, mozzarella cheese and green chilies; mix well. On flat surface, roll pizza dough into 15×6-inch rectangle. Cut into 10 squares. Place 4 pepperoni slices and ¼ cup cheese mixture on each dough square. Wrap dough around pepperoni and cheese, pinching seams to seal. Spray each dough ball with cooking spray and place in air fryer. Air fry 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. Depending on the size of air fryer, several batches may be required. Cool 1 to 2 minutes. Thread 3 snap peas, 3 grape tomatoes, 4 pepperoni slices and 1 popper on each skewer.

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