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Nine Favorite Things |

Nine Favorite Things – new york, new york 

Hi from New York! I’m in the city yet again this week and loving every second of this trip. It’s been a hodgepodge of events. Between meetings, New York Fashion Week, an event I’m co-hosting, and running around the city trying to see everyone I can. This trip is packed full, so it’s been back-to-back.

The city is so pretty right now, very humid, but pretty. It’s definitely not fall here, but yet, I’m still in more of a fall mode than summer. Either way, the city in September is so great! It’s busy with high-energy people running around and lots of fresh flowers lining the streets. But at the same time, signs for pumpkin lattes are all over. Love it!

Nine Favorite Things |

I’m here for a whole 10 days, so more to come! I think this is my longest trip to the city. But with different events and meetings, it ended up working out this way. Not complaining, it’s a nice break from being in the kitchen 24/7 which is where I’ve been the past weeks. Hoping to have a bit of time to explore today, I have a small window of downtime that I’m really looking forward to!

Obviously, travel has been and will be a little more of a focus this month and into October. But it’s been fun and I love the busy schedule. After New York, I have plans for a very quick trip out of the country for a work opportunity that could use my eyes. But with my time being so tight this month and next, I’m considering just heading home. I’ll only have 10 days to catch up before I head to LA for a photoshoot, so this might not be the best time to go. I will be traveling a lot in October as well, we’ll see.

In other, very exciting news, today I am finally sharing our collaboration with Home Chef. This has been a project we’ve been secretly working on for years now, so seeing it come to life is so exciting!

I’m thrilled to share that we are releasing my recipes on the Home Chef menu for a limited time this fall. We’re offering eight cozy meals that are perfect for fall. So excited that the launch is finally here! You can now pre-order for delivery next week with the promo code HALFBAKED and get 18 Free Meals + Free Shipping.

We’ll release 2 recipes each week over the next 4 weeks. This first week’s recipes are my Roasted Red Pepper Pizza and Chipotle Salmon Tacos. I adore these recipes more than you know and can’t wait to bring them into your kitchens!

Pre-order your meal kits here

I cannot wait to see everyone’s meals on social. Please be sure to tag me if you share!

Going to end things there, with this fun, exciting news! Have a wonderful September Saturday! Is anyone headed out to apple pick?

1. Things i’m loving, wanting, and excited to try.

loving…our Snif Half Baked Pumpkin Smash candle. I shared last week that we’re bringing the very popular candle back this year. It will launch this week, September 13th. You can all get on the waitlist here. SO EXCITED, this really is my favorite fall scent. Can’t wait for you all to start burning yours soon!

everything in my cart (low)…the Zara fall launch is my favorite right now. First, the knits. This wool blend knit sweater is beautiful. And I’m really excited about this fitted wool knit cardigan and wool and alpaca blend cardigan (looks soft). This cropped knit vest is a great transitional layering piece from summer to fall. I would wear this so much if I had it right now!

Their skirts are perfect too. Love this satin effect skirt with this alpaca blend knit sweater (so cozy). This pleated midi is pretty too. I would pair it with this cropped soft jacket. Also love their cropped red blazer too.

And last up, these slingback heels are a must, and I’m obsessed with these heeled leather cowboy boots.

listening to…How To Stop Making Yourself Sick & Start Thriving In Your Personal Environment Ft. Branch Basics Founder Allison Evans. It’s scary the things our household products contain. Learned a lot through this episode.

dreaming of going to…how cute is this little farmhouse in upstate New York? I bet it’s beyond magical in October with the leaves.

loving…H&M Home.

shopping…fall dresses. Some cute ideas below. Both high and low.

everything in my cart (beauty)…my travel essentials. I never travel without the Elemis cleansing balm. I use it to remove all the makeup every night. And now they have a new fig scent! It’s a MUST. I also brought the Elemis skin nourishing body cream too and I’m LOVING it. Buttery and so moisturizing.

Another option is The Is Clinical Cleansing Complex, and their Pro-heal Serum in the morning is great too.

And I really am LOVING this Beauty Oil from Elaluz. It’s so glowy and perfect.

ordered…a portable phone charger. Can’t believe I don’t have one of these. My phone has been consistently on low power mode this entire week. 

everything in my cart (high)…some coats, I really love this Oversized Leather Trench from Nour Hammour.

This Bottega Veneta leather midi skirt in silver is super cute and would be fun for the holidays! As is this velvet jacket from Miu Miu.

Love this textured-leather shoulder bag from Khaite. Or how about this leather-trimmed suede tote from Demellier. This Dragon Diffusion large woven-leather basket bag is the current it tote bag I feel like. All three are very chic and good for fall. And these moto boots from Reformation too! So good.

Lastly, I think this candy gold, emerald and sapphire necklace from Jia Jia is really sweet. And lastly, per usual, I love this Khaite Lucca Statement Buckle Leather Belt.

following…Heidi Caillier for interior design inspiration. Her Instagram account is so stunning and she just launched a new design book too. I need to order it. 

shopping…lug sole boots. Every fall these come back into season. Enjoying the below styles.

brainstorming…new cocktails for the upcoming holiday season. Cocktail Saturday will pick back up in October. Any requests as I really start to dive deep into new ideas?

Monster Crunchies |

Most popular: Monster Crunchies

One Pan Chipotle Honey Chicken and Rice |

Runner-up: One Pan Chipotle Honey Chicken and Rice

Also have to mention: Crockpot Creamy Broccoli Cheddar Chicken

Sheet Pan Hot Honey Garlic Chicken and Zucchini |

My Personal Favorite: Sheet Pan Hot Honey Garlic Chicken and Zucchini

Giant Magic Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies |

Last One: Giant Magic Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

3. Fun fall essentials.

4. Favorite questions of the week.

q: What do you do on the plane? Podcasts? Movies? Books? Work?
a: Podcasts please!! But if I’m not typing something my eyes are usually closed shut. I literally can’t keep them open on a plane. I’m not really sleeping but like “half” sleeping, it’s odd. So I don’t usually listen to a thing. I’ll either work or “kind of sleep”.

q: how many days do you cook when you are home?
a: If I’m not traveling, I am cooking every day, so seven days a week. I want to travel more, which means my time spent at home is dedicated to cooking. There’s so much content I want to create and share with you on the website and social. But traveling takes me away from the kitchen. Therefore, I need to make the most of my time in the kitchen when I’m at home!

q: What is the best area to stay in the city? 
a: It really depends on what you’ll be doing in the city. I have been loving the Tribeca area and staying at Fouquets. But anytime I’m doing morning shows or broadcast stuff I like to stay uptown, closer to the park, since that’s where those outlets film. I love that the city is super walkable so I always look at what I have to do in the city before booking a hotel. If location doesn’t matter, I think the Tribeca area is super cute and special.

q: what is your favorite ice cream flavor?
Wow, that’s hard. But I think I have to say chocolate peanut butter chunk/swirl. But I mean…so many good ice cream flavors out there!!! For me, it has to have a chocolate base. Love a fudge brownie. And definitely cookies and cream too. Oooh, and cookie dough.

q: How was the wedding you went to in Cleveland with your family?
a: The wedding was fun! Seeing my family and having everyone together is the best. Had fun getting ready with Cait, Hailey, and Asher. Had fun hanging with my brothers and my parents. I work a lot so taking time off to just be with them was so nice. A good reminder to do it more!! And yes, I miss Cleveland most in the summer when the weather is nice and everything is so vibrant and green!

q: do you ever get into creative ruts? 
a: All the time. But I just keep pushing on and try to stay focused on my goals and what I want most. It’s so hard but just keep doing you. Don’t try to be anything but who you are. And even if you feel self-conscious or like you don’t belong (which is how I often feel), believe that you do. As they say, fake it until you make it! I don’t think it ever gets easier. Just keep pushing on and creating 🍑🩵

q: What makes you happy?
a: The simplest of things. Fresh summer flowers, getting time in with my family, new candles, listening to the birds in the morning, having the sun shine into my room early in the am, excitement for fall, fall fashion, and planning an adventure/move!!  A lot of things 🤍

5. Things to let go of.

I read this article, Bad Cook, Great Mom and it really got me thinking. First of all, my mom does not cook at all. She did when my brothers and I were super young, but my dad took over at some point and then never stopped. Mom did and does a million and one other things that are even better. You all do YOU. You don’t have to be good at cooking or even like cooking. It’s OK, let that “stereotype” go.

Let’s remember to not do things just because it’s what’s expected. Remember that everyone is different. Being unique is so much more interesting than following the crowd.

Be you and don’t feel guilty about a thing. You are unique, even your flaws, it’s all part of what makes you special. Embrace it!

To this point, this is what I am trying my best to do. It’s hard now being someone somewhat in the public eye. The commenters have been out in full force recently (so sad to see such hurtful words). But at the end of the day, I am so excited to share the things I love most with you all!

6. New York So far.

Nine Favorite Things |

Alright, how about a quick New York recap? As I mentioned above, I’ve had a mix of fashion week, meetings, and busy work. It’s been pretty back-to-back and I am so excited about everything we are working on.

For Fashion Week, one of the reasons I decided to come to the city was for the Victoria’s Secret show. The brand went through a major re-launch and put on a beautiful show. Naomi Cambell and Gigi Hadid hosted the event and well, you all, Naomi is truly stunning when you see her in person, what an icon. You can read more about the show here.

The following day I was in and out of meetings and running around the city. Nothing too exciting to share. One of my meetings was for a launch that we have coming next fall. I promise you it is not a cookbook, and for me, it’s even more exciting than a cookbook. It’s a big launch and something we’ve never done before. I can’t wait to share!

Nine Favorite Things |

I had dinner at Monkey Bar uptown. Super cute, very New York vibes. You have to try the carrot cake if you go.

Friday was more of a Fashion Week day with two shows, an after-party, and a dinner. I was invited to the Christian Siriano show, which was fun since I watched his season of Project Runway when I was a kid. Fun to see his success 16 years later. I followed that with the AdoreMe runway show. So cute and such a great brand with really pretty lingerie at a great price point.

After I was off to a very late dinner, which ended my night.

And that takes me up to the present. I’ll have to recap the weekend next week, but I’m looking forward to a few events. Including one with Elemis that I am lucky enough to be hosting, It’s for the launch of their new Fig Cleansing Balm. It’s going to be fun. Then a day full of meetings on Monday.

So, more to come! Obviously, there is a lot of non-food-related material here. But I do hope that those of you who have taken the time to read, enjoy learning more about my life outside of cooking. It’s scary to share different content, but hopefully, some of you are enjoying it (if not there are 6 other days of the week to tune in!). I do my best to provide you with a really great mix of new recipes and fun life updates!

7. Favorite links i’m loving.

10 Easy Ways to Get Yourself in the Fall Spirit in Under 15 Minutes…cute ideas.

How To Refresh Your Work Routine for Fall…some good tips.

12 Fall Weekend Ideas to Try This Year That Don’t Cost a Ton…so fun, I can’t wait.

15 Cozy Books to Get Wrapped Up in This Fall…love these.

10 Dansk Pieces Made for Fall Entertaining (and Curling up at Home)…cute pieces.

Caramel Hazelnut Cake Recipe…ok this sounds amazing.

Why I Plan All My Outfits on Sunday…smart.

All the Halloween Decor Inspiration You Need This Year…so fun.

8. Warm fall looks with soft autumn tones.

fall demin

everything for fall $200 an under at Shopbop

9. This week’s dinners + weekend eats.

Crockpot Coconut Curry Chicken Meatballs |

Monday: Crockpot Coconut Curry Chicken Meatballs

20 Minute Thai Peanut Chicken Ramen | #soup #instantpot #ramen #fallrecipes

Tuesday: 30 Minute Thai Peanut Chicken Ramen

Roasted Butternut Squash and Sun-Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta |

Wednesday:  Roasted Butternut Squash and Sun-Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta

Easy Garlic Parmesan Buffalo Chicken Wings |

Thursday: Easy Garlic Parmesan Buffalo Chicken Wings

French Onion and Apple Grilled Cheese | #grilledcheese #frenchonion #easyrecipes #fall #autumn

Friday: French Onion and Apple Grilled Cheese

Fig Bourbon Cider Smash | #cocktial #drink #figs #bourbon #fallrecipes #autumn

Saturday: Fig Bourbon Cider Smash

Shortcut Easy Apple Fritters |

Sunday: Shortcut Easy Apple Fritters

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  1. I saw Christian’s posts about his NYFW show. I was just watching how it was put together. I’m so jealous you got to go! What a gorgeous show!

    Also, that One Pan Chipotle Honey Chicken and Rice was GREAT! Very unique flavors that both the hubs and I really enjoyed. One of our newest faves!

    Hope you’ve had a great week!

  2. I love your cookbooks and don’t think I’ve ever made a bad recipe of yours. For someone who likes to cook and keeps a pretty well stocked panty, I find them accessible and realistic to make – thank you!! I also love your photography of your food, Colorado, your family and your travels. You’ve created a really cool life for yourself and by extension, you family, and that is fabulous! Love to see young women being creative and successful!

    There are some ugly comments for sure and some of them are just petty and basically stuff that is no one’s business. I see you try to respond respectfully and tactfully. I think that some of the comments about your health come from a legitimate place of caring — and in an online forum, conveying the subtleties of that can be hard. Some folks may have known others who have gone through private struggles that became increasingly apparent and later wished they had found the words to say something. My sense is that a fair portion of the comments do come from a place of worry and a hope that you will take good care of yourself and seek help if needed, whatever that looks like (the details are none of our business). Sending you love and good wishes.

  3. I look forward to Sundays for this. I hate that anyone would ever place a negative comment. Know that we think you are the queen and appreciate all the content you put out to the world. We all just want to join your loving family 🙂