Dreaming of Salted Cocoa Nutella Cupcakes in Tulum!

Salted Cocoa Nutella Cupcakes - offbeat + inspired

I’m in Tulum right now and I can’t even begin to describe how surreal it is. Mexico, for most of my life, had been this intangible exotic thing that I celebrated subtly with a love for taco trucks and simple margaritas. Now I’m in a city where there’s a mezcal bar every ten feet and the best tacos I’ve ever had in my life are being slung on every corner for about 40 cents a pop. I’ve also learned that swimming pools, lakes and oceans do not hold a CANDLE to cenotes when it comes to a day of swimming.

Keep reading!

My First Trip to Miami!

My First Trip to Miami! - offbeat + inspired

Well it’s been FOREVER since I posted and I’m really sad about it!! I’m still alive!! The short story: I’m moving to a new city (more on that soon! :O), I’m at a new workspace, I’ve been taking on new projects, it’s been a total whirlwind! Sarah shared her big announcement a few weeks ago and it’s such a bittersweet thing, but we’re both so excited to continue sharing our life adventures with new perspectives (her new blog!), new inspiration and LOTS of recipes. So I’ll just jump right in. My most recent adventure/project is what I’m sharing today…my first trip to Miami (what? why had I never?) on a SUPERFUN collab with Starwood Hotels.

Keep reading!

Changes Are Happening at Offbeat!

This is a bittersweet post. It’s the post where I officially say goodbye to Offbeat + Inspired. After nearly three years of blogging on this site, learning photography along the way, sharing snapshots of life, being inspired by our readers and living creatively alongside my lifelong friend, Tiffany, I’ve decided to take a step in a different blogging direction.

Offbeat + Inspired will remain a place where you can find creative ideas, beautiful photography and mouthwatering recipes. Tiffany will be taking over as the sole blogger on this site and there’s no doubt in my mind she will continue to bring you great content.

As for me, life has changed quite a bit in the last few months. As a mom of four-month-old twins, I have new responsibilities and a daily life that’s been turned upside down. Even now as I write this, I have to pause to replace pacifiers in an (potentially futile) attempt to get the two munchkins to nap at the same time.

I love this new stage of life, but it’s a change from where Offbeat + Inspired is heading – which is why I’m stepping back from this site. I do, however, love blogging, creating recipes and practicing photography, and I definitely don’t want to let those things go completely. So now, you can find me over at my new site, The Homemade Haus. I’ll be posting all things food, thoughts on motherhood and family and other bits and pieces of my life. You’ll find much of the content to be reminiscent of Offbeat + Inspired as well as new ideas and perspectives stemming from my role as a mom.

I can’t begin to explain how important Offbeat + Inspired has been to me. I have been stretched both creatively and personally through this journey. I’m sad to be leaving, but I know this next stage will bring new challenges and new joys. Stay tuned as Tiffany brings you more incredible Offbeat + Inspired content, and I hope you’ll come visit me over at The Homemade Haus! (Oh – and if you head over there this week, there’s a giveaway happening to celebrate my new site launching!)

Thank you, readers, for your continued encouragement and inspiration for the last three years here at Offbeat. I am truly grateful.

XOXO,

Sarah

Mocha Sorbet

Mocha Sorbet-6

Warm weather is finally here! (At least it was for a few days until it promptly disappeared from the Chicago area in favor of the more familiar cold, gray days.) But regardless of the current temperature, there’s always a reason for frozen treats – especially ones that combine my two favorite ingredients: coffee and chocolate. I’m not sure there exists a better flavor pairing (but I welcome your ideas in case I’m missing something epic!). They’re a match made in recipe heaven…especially when the chocolate is dark and earthy the coffee bold and rich.

Keep reading!

Boston Cream Pancakes + iPhoneography

Boston Cream Pancakes + iPhoneography - offbeat + inspired

It’s been forever since I last posted, so I’m long overdue for some life updates and serious recipes. I’ll start with a recipe because pancakes. (Life stuff soon though because soo much exciting stuff has been going on!!)

Anyhoo, if you follow me on Steller or Instagram, you may have seen these decadent little things already. If not, I hope you’re in the mood for some intense spring brunching and a recipe that takes pancakes to a WHOLE new level.

Keep reading!

A Fruit & Veggie Hashtag Takeover

A Fruit & Veggie Hashtag Takeover - offbeat + inspired

I spend a lot of time on Pinterest and Instagram soaking up the visuals like a sponge. My feeds are loaded primarily with food. A few things happen when I stare at beautiful food photography for hours on end — I want to cook, I want to shoot, and I want to eat. The eating thing is usually what happens first. When all I’ve been looking at are rainbow cakes, brownies loaded with candy and every flavor of French macaron known to mankind, I’m most likely to pig out on sugar and butter. Less than ideal, I know…so instead of fighting the urges (and cavities) on will-power alone, I decided it would be wise to follow more health-focused foodie accounts. Not so surprisingly, it became MUCH easier to eat well when I was taking in all that fresh, green goodness instead of just “junk”. The link between what I was looking at and what I was eating was so obvious that when I learned about the campaign Bolthouse Farms was doing to get people hashtagging more health foods and less junk foods, I flipped. Loved it. So let me explain cause it’s SUCH a cool project.

Keep reading!

GF + Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

GF + Vegan Cinnamon Rolls - offbeat + inspired

I love making friends that share my gluten/dairy intolerances. I hate that they have intolerances because of how fun intolerances aren’t (wouldn’t wish them on anybody), but it’s just awesome to be able to feed my crazy ingredient-ly (??) acrobatic recipes to people who will appreciate them for their health benefits as well as their flavors, and say things like, “WHAT?! I don’t have to stop eating ACTUAL cinnamon rolls?!” No, dear friend. No…you don’t!

Keep reading!

Pomegranate, Lime + Ginger Mocktail

Pomegranate + Ginger Mocktail - offbeat + inspired-2

A few weeks ago, I co-hosted a baby shower for a friend. Pre-pregnancy, the guest of honor and I often enjoyed hanging out and talking over a bottle of wine, but considering it was her baby shower (and I’m also pregnant), wine had to take a backseat.

Celebrations like baby showers deserve a festive drink, so I came up with a simple mocktail recipe that can be scaled down for 1 person or made for a crowd. And with Christmas and New Year’s Eve around the corner, I don’t have to settle for sipping a boring beverage when everyone else is toasting with a glass of champagne or a cocktail. I will be celebrating with a tasty mocktail in hand!

Keep reading!

Eggnog “White Russians”

Eggnog "White Russians" - offbeat + inspired

Winter cocktails are my favorite. They’re so cozy and rich! The thought of a cold glass of milk punch or eggnog makes me want to gather all the ugly sweaters I can, make one giant super sweater and climb into it with all my friends while we watch cheesy holiday movies and get warm by the fire. Yes, I’m weird, but you have to admit that sounds pretty amazing.

I’ve never actually crafted my OWN winter cocktail though, so this year I wanted to try a twist on the White Russian. I love the “grown up chocolate milk” aspect of this drink, so I stuck with that and changed it up a little bit by using eggnog instead of cream. It’s such an easy alteration, but the results are SO good. Hangar 1 Vodka with its authentically fresh, clean flavor pulls the whole thing together and gives it a perfect kick.

Keep reading!

Cranberry-Orange Shortbread Cookies

Cranberry-Orange Shortbread Cookies-6

Ever cook something for the first time and then wonder, “Why in the world haven’t I been making this all along!?” That’s how I feel about shortbread. For some reason, I’ve never made shortbread cookies until this year – but now, I’m completely hooked. I’m ashamed to say that I’ve quickly baked (and eaten) enough of these buttery, sweet, crumbly cookies to make up for all the years they’ve been missing from my kitchen.

Keep reading!