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July 2013

Mary's Modern Homemaking

It's Easy with Krusteaz
By Mary Frances

Mary's Modern Homemaking archive



Even though my mom was a stay-at-home mom, she still needed a bit of help in the kitchen. Getting breakfast and lunches pulled together for the five of us kids and my dad could be a real chore.

Thanks to the Krusteaz company and their fine line of mixes, her life was made easier. Most mornings she served up buttermilk pancakes from the Krusteaz mix. Just measure and add water. One bowl, one measuring cup is all it takes.

I am sure there are many people who snub their noses at mixes, saying, "Making it from scratch is easy and better for you." Maybe, but busy people need to free up their time whenever possible.

I tried homemade pancakes once. Sorry! Too much trouble! I used two bowls and several different sizes of measuring cups and spoons. Then I had to let the batter "rest" for ten minutes. When my family finally sat down to eat, the kitchen was a mess.

Now I don't know about you, but I'd rather spend my time on myself, my family, or my friends. Enough of being in the kitchen! While I do not mind cooking, dishes are out of the question. Even with a dishwasher, one still has pans to clean.

A little bit of history

The Krusteaz brand of mixes is with us thanks to a local bridge club in Seattle. Back in 1932 a group of bridge-playing women decided to tackle the challenge of a perfect pie crust. They came up with a mix—just add water—for the perfect crust. Thus Krust (crust) + Eaz (easy). One of the husbands convinced his employer, Northern Pacific Railroad, to serve pies made with the mix on their train routes. Things just grew from there.

During the 1940s and 1950s, the company developed additional product lines and expanded production facilities from the original plant in Seattle's industrial area to other places in Washington, Kentucky, and Kansas. The company is still owned by the Heily family, one of the original investors of the company.

In the 1960s the company advertised its new Krusteaz Old-Fashioned Buttermilk Pancake Mix with the Krusteaz Kurtesy Kitchen, a mobile van that traveled throughout the Pacific Northwest. Lucky local residents enjoyed free freshly made pancakes wherever the van stopped. Today, the company helps school groups, non-profits, and food-related charities raise money through its Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser Program.

You can see a complete list of products on the website, but you might be surprised to know how many types of mixes there are: pancakes, Belgian waffles, breads, cornbread, crumb cakes, cookies, brownies, lemon bars . . . and don't forget pie crust!


You can't go wrong with a few stacks of pancakes.
Maple syrup and butter are traditional toppings, but try your own favorites.


Busy people need easy solutions for meals

Almost every busy person has come to think of a slow cooker as his or her right-hand helper. What could be easier than some meat, potatoes or rice, veggies, and broth thrown into a pot? Turn it on low, and cook all day!

Well, there is one potential problem here. Can you figure out what it is? You have to turn it on. That's right, without the pot turned on, nothing cooks! The other night that's exactly what happened at our house. I came home to raw meat in a cold pot. Luckily, thanks to a back-up plan and a well-stocked freezer and cupboard, dinner was served: homemade pizza and cinnamon buns.

I always keep Krusteaz bread mixes around. They can be used for more than bread: such things as pizza dough, pull-apart cinnamon buns, and bread pudding. Some of my favorite mixes are Country White (the most versatile), Classic Sourdough, Honey Wheat, and Hawaiian Sweet.

Stock your cupboard with cans of pineapple, mushrooms, marinara spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, roasted canned tomatoes, chicken, etc. In the freezer I keep already shredded cheeses, red or green peppers, sausage, pepperoni, chopped onions, and just about anything you can imagine. Don't rule out dehydrated items as well, such as onions and raisins.

The following are Krusteaz recipes that I've adapted to fit my family's tastes. You can find lots of recipes using Krusteaz mixes on the company's website. Look for instructional videos on how to make fun variations of pancakes.


Meatball pizza


Hawaiian pizza


Easy Pizza

Making the dough using Krusteaz bread mixes is as easy as 1, 2, 3!

1. PLACE . . .

. . . 1 cup warm water, yeast (enclosed with Krusteaz bread mix), and bread mix in large bowl. Stir until blended. Dough will be sticky.

2. KNEAD . . .

. . . dough on a lightly floured surface 5–10 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place in a lightly greased bowl, turning dough to coat on all sides.

3. LET RISE . . .

. . . covered, in a warm place until double in size (about 1 hour). Punch dough down.

For the rest of the pizza:

Divide dough in half for one large pizza and, with the other half, into four pieces for small individual pizzas.

Transfer to a lightly floured surface. Roll out to fit your pizza stone or pan. Using a stone is the best way because the pizza cooks more evenly, and you can roll the dough directly on the stone.

Let rest 10 minutes. Prick with fork tines at 1-inch intervals. Bake at 400 F for 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Top with your favorite ingredients. Bake an additional 10–15 minutes.

My suggestions: Use Krusteaz Hawaiian Sweet Bread Mix, topped with pineapple and ham, for Hawaiian Pizza. Krusteaz Sourdough Bread Mix adds a nice flavor to a meat pizza.


Serve pizza with the drink of your choice and cinnamon buns—or as I call them, Cinnamon Bon Bons, because they are small bites of deliciousness!


Roll the dough directly on a pizza stone.


Cinnamon Bon Bons


1 package Krusteaz Country White Bread
1 cup room temperature water
1/4 cup softened butter or margarine
2 tablespoons sugar
1 packet yeast (enclosed with Krusteaz bread mix)

Combine all the ingredients and follow steps 1, 2, and 3 above for pizza dough. Divide into 12 balls. Place balls in a lightly greased 13x9x2-inch pan and pour the following topping over them.


1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

In a small saucepan over medium low heat, stir together butter or margarine, brown sugar, maple syrup, and cinnamon until butter or margarine is melted.

Pour mixture over dough balls that you have prepared (see above). Cover with a cloth and let rise in a warm, draft-free place 20–30 minutes.

Bake at 350 F for 25–35 minutes.


Cinnamon Bon Bons



Note: Product endorsements on Yummy Northwest are based solely on personal evaluation and opinion and are never solicited or paid for.


Mary Frances lives in Ravensdale, Washington, and loves finding healthy ways to keep her castle clean. She believes that what we clean with can be just as important to our health as what we eat. When she's not cleaning, Mary Frances battles the blackberry vines in her yard. Also enjoy Mary Frances's blog, All American Gal.


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