Posts made in December 6th, 2012

handmade holiday: barbecue spice rub


Posted on Dec 6, 2012 in Food

After yesterday’s excursion  into puppy gifts, we’re back solidly into presents of the human variety today. This spice rub is an amazing stocking stuffer for anyone who loves to grill and would work perfectly in a nice little jar as a small gift for a co-worker or acquaintance. I mean, who doesn’t like flavor? Everyone likes flavor! Give the gift of flavor.

I love this spice mix. Love, love, love it. I’ve been using it on everything from salmon to veggies! I wrote “all-purpose” on the label (which you can download at the end of this post) and I truly mean it. I mean, I wouldn’t recommend sprinkling it on top of your morning Wheaties, but anything savory is a go. It really does make a ho-hum dinner like baked salmon into something spectacular. In fact, I like this spice mix so much that it’s been living on our kitchen windowsill because I want it close by at all times.

It comes together very quickly and uses spices you probably already have stashed in your spice rack, making this an excellent last-minute gift for when that person who you “accidentally” left off your list gives you a call to say they’re coming over in 10 minutes to give you your gift.


Give the gift of flavor!

And even if you don’t use this as a last-minute rescue gift, it would work beautiful done in bulk ahead of time. Head to the bulk section of your local health food store and fill up on all spices, come home and mix it in a big bowl and dole it out into cute little jars (mine is a food grade jar from Hobby Lobby), label it, put a bow on it and you’ve got a great little gift.

Of course, this recipe is highly adaptable. Add more red pepper if you want more of a kick. Cut back on the garlic powder if your recipients are garlic-phobes (do those exist?). Cut out almost all the salt if you want to give a low-sodium version to someone watching their salt intake. Make it your spice rub. And once you’ve got the recipe down pat, I promise folks will be asking for it year-after-year.

Barbecue Spice Rub

by Cassie Johnston

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: None

Makes: About 1 cup spice rub


  • 1/3 cup sea salt
  • 1/3 cup maple or brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup paprika
  • 2 tablespoons black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon red cayenne pepper


  1. Mix all ingredients together, store in an airtight container. Use as a spice rub on chicken, fish, beef, or veggies.
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As promised, I also whipped up a label for the spice rub jars. I sized these to fit onto a small jar that would hold one entire batch. As you can see, the label sheet includes quite a few more labels, so feel free to multiply the recipe and give the gift of flavor to everyone you know!

To print them, just pick up some full-sheet sticker paper from any office supply store, print and then cut out with a pair of sharp scissors or a craft knife.

Have you ever had to pull together a last minute surprise gift? What’d you end up giving?

november’s best-of-the-best


Posted on Dec 6, 2012 in Career

I’m a few days late, but it’s time to do my monthly recap of my favorite content from BTHR from last month. I love doing these recap posts because I think it’s a fun way to make sure you guys didn’t miss out on any of the gems of the last 30 days, but also it helps me put a nice little feather in my cap. It’s really rewarding to see all my hard work from the last month in one spot. Patting yourself on the back every now and again is good for ya. Enjoy!

Best Recipe: Not at all even close to anything resembling a “healthy choice”, but this Cream and Crimson pizza was insanely delicious. Highly recommended for an occasional treat!

Best Printable: Hands down the Wellness Calendar for November takes the cake. This sucker took me a while to put together, but the response was HUGE and I’m so happy so many people loved it. It was so popular, I made one for this month, too!

Best Confession: This confession about my sugar addiction is something that a lot of folks seem to commiserate with. Hopefully we can all figure out a way to cut back on the sweet stuff.

Best Workout: This kettlebell workout that I tested out was fast, easy, calorie-torching and definitely made it a little hard to walk the next day.

Best Discovery: Without a doubt, the Holidays Rule album I talked about in this post. So much Christmas awesome.

Best How-To: I wrote up my tips for how to roast the perfect holiday turkey. It makes a winner, winner turkey dinner every time.

Best Photos: I’m kinda obsessed with the photos from my Vanilla Cardamom Spritz Cookies recipe. I just happened to finish up the cookies while the light was perfect and the result makes me very, very happy.

Best Recap: This list-style recap of my holiday weekend was chock-full of stuff we accomplished. It’s always fun pulling together recaps of just a “normal” weekend to share.

How’d your November go? Did you accomplish any goals, hit any milestones or have anything to celebrate? Toot your own horn!