Banana Pudding Poke Cake and Introducing #BlogFilmFood

#BlogFilmFood - A monthly virtual dinner and a movie club for spring and summer | MealPlanningMagic.comY’all, I have something super fun to let you know about. Starting this month and through the rest of the spring and summer, some blogging friends and I are bringing you a virtual dinner and a movie party! We’re calling it #BlogFilmFood because, well, that’s what it’s all about–blogging, films and food. We’ve gotten to know each other through the Houston Bloggers group or when we met up at Blog Elevated and since then, we’ve been talking about how much fun it would be to meet up for a girls hangout night. But since we’re spread all over and our family’s schedules are cuh-razy, it’s easier said than done. So when Kathy over at Penney Lane Kitchen suggested we host a get together and invite our readers, we were all on board because how much fun is a party when you’ve got LOTS of friends to share it with?

So, that’s what we’re doing. Once a month (the third Friday of the month actually), we’ll choose a movie and then bring you the virtual potluck dishes to go with. We’re taking turns hosting and the hostess will choose a favorite classic film title and we’ll create recipes centered around the film. Hopefully it will inspire you to host an ACTUAL potluck with your own friends! Kathy is our first hostess and she’s chosen Steel Magnolias for our first film. What better way for a bunch of gals from the south to bond over a film and some delicious dishes to go with than this classic film?

And now I’ll introduce you to the fantastic team of bloggers I’ve joined up with to bring you this Spring and Summer Film & Food Blogging series!
Kathy from Penney Lane Kitchen: Celebrating life’s occasions big and small.
Kelley from The Grant Life: Mixing food and family.
Kirsten from Kirsten Oliphant: An eclectic celebration of chaos.
Jessica from Family Fun Journal: Fun ideas and projects for your family and home.
Joanie from Zag Left: Enjoying food, wine, and life. Taking the road less traveled.
Kristi from Mom’s Confession: Family Recipes, Simple Crafts, Organizing Tips
Miranda from Involuntary Housewife: Putting Pinterest to the test one mess at at time.
Brenda from Meal Planning Magic (that’s me!): Self taught meal planner showing ways to eat healthier, get organized and have fun along the way.

#BlogFilmFood - A monthly virtual dinner and a movie club for spring and summer |

I chose to make a dessert–because I LOVE desserts and rarely make them! I immediately thought of banana pudding when Kathy suggested Steel Magnolias. Set in modern-day Louisiana, banana pudding and the south just seemed like a natural fit to me! But wanted to make a twist on traditional banana pudding so came up with a banana pudding poke cake. I’ve used boxed cake mix and pudding mix (as you may know, I’m normally a make it mostly from scratch kind of person) but sometimes it’s ok to do a mix! I did make real whipped cream and included fresh bananas so that’s my happy medium. It’s all about Keeping It Real, right? It is delicious if I do say so myself so I hope you’ll give it a try.

Banana Pudding Poke Cake | | #blogflimfood

Banana Pudding Poke Cake

Yield: 18 pieces


  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1 large box instant vanilla pudding
  • 4 just ripe bananas (no or few brown spots), chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups vanilla wafers, crushed
  • 1 pint heavy whipping cream
  • 2-3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • vanilla wafers for garnish


  1. Bake cake per box instructions.
  2. While cake is baking, prepare pudding per box instructions. Divide into equal parts.
  3. Cool cake.
  4. Peel, slice and chop bananas. Set aside.
  5. Using the end of a wooden spoon, poke holes into cake.
  6. Spread half of pudding onto cake, smoothing it down into the holes.
  7. Mix chopped bananas with remaining pudding and spread over plain pudding layer.
  8. Using a mixer, whip whipped cream on high until fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar until just mixed in.
  9. Spread whipped cream over top of pudding layer.
  10. Sprinkle crushed vanilla wafers over top of cake.
  11. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  12. Garnish each slice with sliced banana and vanilla wafer if desired.
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Banana Pudding Poke Cake | | #blogflimfood

Banana Pudding Poke Cake | | #blogflimfood

Be sure to check out everyone else’s recipes on their blogs by clicking the thumbnail photo links below. Enjoy!

Gardening Tips For Beginners

Guest Post

Today, I’m so excited to have Kelly of the Grant life here to share her tips on growing a garden. Lately, I’ve been talking about how to eat real food and well, be realistic about it. A great way to do just that is to plant a garden! It doesn’t have to be big. Kelley is sharing Gardening Tips for Beginners. No matter if you’ve been gardening awhile or maybe this spring and summer will be your first go at it, her tips should help you get things going in no time!

Gardening Tips For Beginners | Guest Post from The Grant Life on

Hey yall!  My name is Kelley and I’m excited to share Brenda’s space today.  A little about me – I am a momma to two kiddos ages 3 and 4, I love to cook, garden and try to live a more natural lifestyle.  I was born and raised in Texas and that’s where we are living now.  I love easy homemade recipes with simple ingredients, pasta, avocados and anchors.  And I share it all on my blog the Grant life.

I mentioned we are trying to live a more natural lifestyle and one of the things we have done is start to grow our own food.  Its great to know exactly where your fresh produce is coming from and its cheaper!  [Which is always better, right?]  I am not a gardening pro by any means, but I have learned a few things through our gardening journey.  Today I’m going to share my top gardening tips for beginners.

1. Pick what you already eat to grow – All the different kinds of seeds can get overwhelming when you are first starting a garden.  My suggestion is pick a fruit or vegetable that you already eat often at home and that is easy to grow.  We picked squash and after our first harvest, I was hooked!

2. Know your soil – After you have picked out your seed, test your soil.  Some plants like more acidic conditions, while others do not.  Its best to know up front what type you have so that your plants will thrive.  Or if you are like us and have crummy soil, be prepared to build a raised garden bed and purchase dirt.  Here are some easy soil tests you can do on your own.

3. Find out planting times – Plants are seasonal and not all of them grow at the same time during the year.  Find out what plants do well in the Spring if that is the time you are going to start a garden.  You can always start your garden inside and transfer it outside like we did.

4. Plan your garden – Sketch out in a notebook where you want everything planted.  Some plants grow well when grouped together.  For example, corn, beans and squash grow well when planted together.  They are called the 3 Sisters.  Its also good to have it written out in case you forget where you put what seed!

5. Schedule when to water – I know this sounds silly, but its something that I had to do!  I would forget if I had watered my plants and that’s never a good thing.  The best times to water are in the morning and the evening.

6. Maintain your beds – Once everything is growing, make sure you prune the dead leaves and remove weeds.  Look for bugs and add mulch if needed.  This doesn’t have to take long, just a few minutes once a day and you should be good to go!

And there you have it!  Simple tips to start your garden.  And if you are looking for some recipes to use with your homegrown produce, be sure to check out:

Thanks again to Brenda for letting me stop by!  Hope to see you around the Grant life sometime soon!


A Note From Kelley: Hey yall! Im Kelley! Momma to Ryley and Avery. Easy homemade recipe lover. Born and raised Texan. Crunchy wanna-be. Avocado addict. And a firm believer that our everyday chaos is beautiful and normal.

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