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National Strawberry Parfait Day

Who knew June 25 was National Strawberry Parfait day? I am so excited because it gives me the opportunity to share one of my quick and easy go to summer recipes. This is also no bake, so perfect even on days that are too hot to turn your oven on. You will look like a rock star serving this up for your next potluck, pool party or even a picnic in the park. Let’s get started.

What you will need:

· 1lb Fresh Srawberries

· ¼ cup granulated sugar

· 1 teaspoon lemon zest

· 1 tablespoon lemon juice

· 1 sleeve of graham crackers

· ¼ cup butter (melted)

· 2 8oz blocks of cream cheese (softened)

· 14oz can sweetened condensed milk

· 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

This may look like a lot but I promise it isn't. Most of this you will likely already have in your pantry or refrigerator. The sweetened and condensed milk may be one of the items you need to pick up. If you aren't making it a common pantry item you should. It has become a staple in my pantry. It jazzes up a cup of coffee, turns a sweet into a savory or gives you an excuse to whip up another dessert. It comes in a can and is shelf stable. What is not to love?

Ok so now that you have your ingredients it is time to whip up the goodness.

1. Remove and discard the strawberry stems and cut the berries into bite-size pieces. You are going to combine with the sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice in a small bowl. Stir together until well combined and then let sit for 15min.

2. Time to pulverize the graham crackers. You could pull out your food processor for this but who wants another dish to clean. I place the crackers in large ziplock bag and crush with rolling pin until they are fine crumbs. Pour into a bowl and combine with the melted butter. Stir until all the crumbs are moistened. Set aside.

3. In a large bowl use a hand mixer to combine the two softened cream cheese blocks, condensed milk and vanilla extract until smooth and combined.

Now all that is left is to assemble.

4. Grab your mason jar, sundae cups, plastic cups or other container of your choice and start building. First a couple of spoonfuls of your cheesecake mixture, then the gram cracker crumbs, and then the strawberries. Repeat in that order until you get to the top of your container ending with a layer of strawberries. Top with some whipped cream if you like and it is ready to serve.

Voila, it's that easy. Parfaits aren't just for desserts either. Substitute the cheese cake layers with some yogurt or the graham cracker layers with granola and you have a healthy breakfast alternative. You will impress your guests and your kids with this beautiful and delicious sweet treat. Don't be afraid to get the kids involved in this recipe as well. Can we say FUN FRIDAY. They will love it and you will love the memories you will share. It is a win, win in our book.

Make sure to let us know us know if you try it. We would love to hear how you make out and what you do to make it your own. Now get out there and parfait away.

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