Mocha Twix Brownies

Mocha Twix Brownies are not responsible.

They don’t care about you, and I hate to say that they aren’t gonna leave you better off than when they found you. But I can promise you one thing:

Mocha Twix Brownies are the best irresponsible thing you will ever do… that involves a brownie!

Mocha Twix Brownies :: ooey gooey goodness from Craving Cobbler

These aren’t fancy. I’m gonna be up front here and say that these are boxed brownie mixes. Boxed brownie mixes made in the most decadent way imaginable. How about a story?

When I was pregnant with my son Wyatt, my aunt June made some insane brownies for me with Symphony candy bars layered in the middle. I say “insane”, but a better word for those naughty little devils would be “inspiring”. Those brownies got this hungry pregnant lady baking batches of brownies like crazy! On a side note: my aunt June is always cooking, canning, and baking for everyone in her life. She does it to make them feel better, to keep them from hunger, or to make them feel loved. Whatever the reason, she’s persistent with her delicious cooking, and I love and admire her for that. Anyway… I decided that if Symphony bars were awesome, then how would other candy bars taste?

I must have tried everything. Let’s see: Kit Kat, Snickers, Reeses, Rolos, Heath Bars, York Peppermint Patties (which are the correct choice for Christmas gifts), and then I tried Twix.

It’s crazy. Twix aren’t even my favorite candy bar. If I had a gun to my head (which would be outrageous for someone to get that violently worked up over candy preference, but O.K. I’ll play along) I’d have to pick PayDay. But the chewy caramel, crunchy cookie, and fudgey brownie combo was just over-the-top-arm-wrestling perfect… or so I thought.

I never considered putting this recipe on my site because, let’s be honest, it’s not really a “recipe”. You layer candy bars inside brownie batter. But spreading Ree Drummond aka The Pioneer Woman aka the Queen of all food bloggersmocha frosting over the Twix Brownies… it was borderline life changing.

Ok so maybe I’m dramatic. But I’m also a serious dessert eater, and I know good from great… and these are beyond great!

Mocha Twix Brownies Recipe

Ingredients

Brownies

  • 2 boxes Brownie Mix (I used Betty Crocker Fudge Brownie Mix)
  • 30ish fun size Twix (This is not an exact science.)

Frosting

  • 1 stick unsalted butter (softened)
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup coffee (cooled)

Directions

Step 1
Prepare your brownie mixes according to their package directions, including preheating your oven to the required temperature. For mine, it was 350 degrees.
Step 2
Spray a 13 x 9 pan (I used a glass pan here) and pour roughly half of your brownie batter into the greased pan.
Step 3
Gently lay an even layer of Twix over the batter. Pour over the remaining batter, trying to completely cover the candy bars.
Step 4
Bake until the center of the brownies don't seem to jiggle when tilting the pan. My brand of brownie mix called for baking one box of brownies for 20-24 minutes. We're dealing with two boxes worth of brownies plus an entire bag of fun size Twix here because we're either insane or enjoy flirting with the threat of diabetes. Anyway, I baked mine for 45-50 minutes (it was a team effort so we had trouble remembering the exact timing.)
Step 5
To make the frosting, add the softened butter, sugar, cocoa powder, salt, and vanilla to the bowl of a stand mixer. Begin to mix on the lowest speed until it seems to become less powdery and more like clumps.
Step 6
Slowly pour in the coffee until you're sure the contents of the bowl aren't going to fly out at you and then let it rip. Crank the mixer up to high and whip the hell out of it until it's completely fluffy and a yummy light brown color.
Step 7
Spread the frosting evenly over the slightly or completely cooled brownies. I had ants in my pants to get these in the fridge to set, so my brownies were still a little warm when I added the mocha goodness. It didn't seem to make such a big difference. The butter in the frosting started melting just a bit, but not enough to cause problems. As long as you're popping it in the fridge to set, the main thing is getting that yummy layer all over the top.
Step 8
When you're ready to get crazy with some decadence, make sure to run your knife under hot water and wipe dry in between each cut. This should ensure that you get nice clean slices and keep the frosting from gooping up on your knife.
Step 9
Here's another picture of the same stack of brownies just because I couldn't stop taking pictures... or eating them.
Step 10
Seriously. Please make these, and let me know if you survived eating the whole pan!

Halloween Cupcakes

Happy Halloween… Now Let’s Make Cupcakes!

Halloween Cupcakes Party with buttercream recipes

My son Wyatt received some cupcake liners and decorations as a present for Halloween. So I did the only responsible thing that a level-headed mother would do… I planned a cupcake party and made tons of frosting! Ok so maybe “responsible” is a bit of a stretch, but at least it was fun. And I will say that we gave everything away except a small plateful for us to share.

Halloween Cupcakes with three different frosting recipes!

 

I decided to used boxed cake mixes since I opted for three flavors of frosting! The boxed stuff was actually pretty good. We used Halloween funfetti and chocolate so there would be tons of frosting/cupcake flavor combos. The real fun and yumminess was with the frostings. I made a Chocolate Buttercream Frosting which is the only chocolate frosting recipe you will ever need. I’m serious… it’s perfect. It’s delicious of course, but also super easy. You don’t even have to think ahead and soften the butter. It’s just a matter of melting a couple things together in the microwave (butter and a bag of chocolate chips) and then whipping it up in your mixer with a few other things (powdered sugar, sour cream, and vanilla).

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Next I made an Orange Buttercream Frosting. This was a brand new frosting that I made up just for this occasion, and it was awesome! It’s light and fluffy with just the right amount of orange flavor. Orange zest is blended together with butter before getting the traditional treatment of powdered sugar with flavoring (fresh orange juice) and cream. It was so good! I just keep thinking of ways to get it into my mouth. I WILL be putting some of this orange frosting between some cookies at christmas baking time… it has to happen.

Orange Buttercream Halloween Cupcake

The orange was great on the vanilla cupcakes, but the orange frosting/chocolate cupcake combo was my ultimate favorite of the day. Check out the orange ghost on top of a chocolate cupcake that my sister Mandy made!

Ghost Cupcake made with homemade Orange Buttercream Frosting

The final frosting recipe I can’t take credit for. It’s the best vanilla frosting I’ve ever tasted and I have Sally’s Baking Addiction to thank for it. I speak for Pinners the world over when I say that we are all extremely thankful of both Sally and her baking addiction! Her Frosted Sugar Cookie Bars have become one of my go-to crowd pleasing desserts (especially when there are children or irresponsible women involved) and it’s the vanilla frosting from this recipe that I have adopted as my favorite! It’s the only vanilla frosting I ever make now.

Halloween Cupcakes

 

Here’s the whole shebang!

Halloween Cupcakes Party with three homemade frosting recipes!

They were all so cute… check out the witches that my mom put together!

Halloween  Cupcakes

We may have gone a little crazy, but it was a fun way to spend a Saturday! Happy Halloween!

Halloween Cupcakes Party with homemade frosting recipes!

Halloween Cupcakes Party with homemade frosting recipes!

 

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

This is the only chocolate buttercream frosting recipe you’ll ever need!

As anyone who knows me at all can tell you, I need little to no provocation for making sweets. So when my son received gummy eyeballs and orange striped cupcake liners from Grandma for Halloween, it took me all of two minutes to decide to have a cupcake party in Halloween’s honor.

Did he go for it? Of course he did.

Could I have bought six plain cupcakes at the grocery store and let him slap the eyeballs on them? Sure.

Would it have been a better idea than making two different kinds of cupcakes and three different flavors of frosting for three adults and one four year old? Well I suppose that depends on what your definition of “better” is. For me, it was totally better trying a bite from every frosting/cupcake option and watching Wyatt mix all three buttercreams (vanilla, chocolate, and orange) together to make a “witch’s brew”.

Anyway, this chocolate buttercream is delicious and insanely easy. You don’t even have to plan ahead by softening the butter! It’s just a matter of melting a couple things together then using your mixer for a couple minutes. Its flavor will directly reflect the chocolate chips that you decide to use. I used semi-sweet chips for the Halloween cupcakes and it was great. I’m sure that milk chocolate would make a wonderful frosting as well, just expect it to be sweeter. Of course if you really wanna go to town try using some expensive chips or chunks… chocolate really is one of those items that you get what you pay for.

I promise if you try it once, you’ll make it over and over again!

Chocolate Buttercream Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 12oz chocolate chips (one bag)
  • 8oz sour cream
  • 4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions

Step 1
In a microwave safe bowl, melt the stick of butter.
Step 2
Stir in the bag of chocolate chips until thoroughly coated in the melted butter. Heat another 30 seconds in the microwave, then remove the bowl and stir again.
Step 3
You want the chips to completely melt into the butter and become luscious, shiny, and smooth. It may be necessary to heat everything another 30 seconds to get the desired results.
Step 4
Scrap the melted chocolate mixture into the bowl of your mixer and allow to cool for a few minutes (2-3) before adding in the sour cream. Mix on medium speed with the paddle attachment for around 2 minutes, or until the sour cream is thoroughly incorporated into the chocolate.
Step 5
Mix in about half of the sugar on the lowest speed until just combined. Add the rest of the sugar and mix in on low again until just mixed.
Step 6
Scrape down the paddle and sides of the bowl and pour in the vanilla. Turn the mixer on high and allow to mix, fluff, and expand for three minutes.
Step 7
You're left with a rich and delicious chocolate frosting that works for everything!
Step 8
Obviously we were having a Halloween cupcake party.
Step 9
As you can see, we piped the chocolate buttercream onto chocolate cupcakes and vanilla Halloween funfetti cupcakes...
Step 10
and topped them with fun decorations.
Step 11
Don't just save this chocolate buttercream recipe for Halloween... once you taste it you'll want it all the time!

Orange Buttercream Frosting

This orange buttercream frosting is sweet fluffy perfection!

It’s actually close to Halloween, so of course we decided to have a Halloween cupcake party! I opted for boxed cake mix (which were actually yummy… it’d been awhile since I’d made a straight from mix cake, and both flavors were pretty damn tasty). It may sound like a cop out, but I can assure you that I only did it so that I could focus on the really important things… the frostings! I made a traditional buttercream, a Chocolate Buttercream, and the orange of course.

The orange frosting was by far my favorite. It was fantastic on both the vanilla and the chocolate cupcakes. That being said, I can only imagine how fabulous it would taste on an orange or lemon cake! The great thing about this frosting (well apart from the light citrus flavor and fluffy texture) is that it is an absolute cinch to make. If you have the forethought to soften butter and buy two oranges, then you’re halfway there!

I love this.

It’s officially my new favorite thing (besides my kids of course).

Make this today even if you don’t have a cake to put it on… or maybe tomorrow if you need to buy oranges.

Orange Buttercream Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 stick softened unsalted butter (3/4 cup)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon orange zest (the zest of two oranges)
  • 2 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 1 pinch fine salt

Directions

Step 1
Add the softened butter and orange zest into the bowl of your mixer and fluff on medium speed for about one minute using the paddle attachment.
Step 2
Slowly add the powdered sugar in two or three installments, scraping down the sides of the bowl in between additions.
Step 3
Add in the heavy cream and orange juice and mix in on low speed (to avoid a big splash out).
Step 4
Once the liquids are incorporated into the frosting, whip on high speed for around 2 1/2 minutes. The frosting should be light, fluffy, and smell incredible.
Step 5
Sprinkle over the salt and whip on high for another 30 seconds or so.
Step 6
Pile onto your favorite flavor cake or pipe onto cupcakes to take them out of this world!
Step 7
These are vanilla funfetti cupcakes (Halloween actually) and the orange flavor was such a great compliment to the vanilla!
Step 8
The only problem with this is peeling the liner off fast enough!

Here are some Halloween cupcakes with this yummy Orange Buttercream!

Orange Buttercream Halloween Cupcake

Ghost Cupcake made with homemade Orange Buttercream Frosting

Pineapple Bread Pudding

This Pineapple Bread Pudding is the ultimate quick dessert… using only pantry staples.

My mom has been nice enough to watch our new baby Ruby on Mondays and Tuesdays while I’m in the office with Brian. It’s a huge help to us, but she’s even taken it a step further. Every Monday we can count on dinner being ready for our entire family when we walked through the door! It’s amazingly sweet, thoughtful, and delicious!

One side effect of these helpful and tasty nights is an overabundance of Hawaiian rolls. Our entire family loves them, so we seem to pair them with tons of different meals. From meatball sliders to chicken and dressing to BBQ pork, these sweet little rolls find their way onto our plates every Monday. Not so long ago, we discovered that we had ended up with one full and two half-full packages of leftover Hawaiian rolls. I realized that mom had been opening up new packs of rolls every week instead of using the older ones. Sorry for throwing you under the bus mom, but after a decade of working in a grocery store I just can’t look the other way!

So I decided to solve this leftover bread problem with my absolute favorite solution of all time… Bread Pudding!

I love bread pudding so much that I’ve been known to actually leave my house with the sole purpose of buying bread in order to make it. With that in mind, I was delighted to finally have a legitimate excuse for a decadent custardy dessert. What was even cooler was the fact that I made this only using things that I already had in my pantry! I happened to have lite coconut milk and fat-free sweetened condensed milk, but you could definitely use the full fat versions (I’m sure it would only make it richer). This was great with vanilla ice cream, but I just kept thinking of other ways to serve it. Top it with caramel sauce, whipped cream, chopped macadamia nuts… you name it! It’s totally easy, cheap, and yummy!

Pineapple Bread Pudding Recipe

Ingredients

  • 18 Hawaiian Rolls (one and a half packages)
  • 1 can pineapple chunks (20 ounces... drain and reserve the juice)
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 can coconut milk (13.5 ounces)
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk (14 ounces)
  • 3/4 cups reserved pineapple juice
  • 1/2 cup egg beaters (or 2 eggs slightly beatened)

Directions

Step 1
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and grab a large bowl.
Step 2
Tear your Hawaiian rolls into pieces in the bowl. If you are working with fresh rolls I suggest doing this earlier in the day so the pieces have a chance to catch some air and dry out a bit.
Step 3
Melt the butter and brown sugar in a small saucepan over high heat.
Step 4
Once the sugar and butter is really bubbling, add the drained pineapple. Add the pinch of salt and let it continue to bubble around 5 minutes.
Step 5
While the pineapples enjoy their caramel jacuzzi, whisk together the coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk, egg beaters, and pineapple juice.
Step 6
Pour the sweet milk mixture all over the bread, taking care to saturate everybody.
Step 7
Press the moistened bread into a buttered 13x9 pan. Dot the top with the caramelized pineapple chunks, and drizzle over the brown sugar sauce.
Step 8
Bake in your preheated oven around an hour, or until center is no longer jiggly. Let it cool as long as you can stand it, and serve with vanilla or pineapple ice cream!
Step 9
I think coconut, raisins, chopped nuts, or of course fresh pineapple would be wonderful additions to this. Please let me know if you have any truly inspired ideas for extra ingredients!

Of course nothing is wrong with this simple combination of pantry staples. You're gonna love it!

Lemon Yogurt Cake

This lemon yogurt cake was an impulse the other day that ended with scrumptious results.

Wyatt said we should make lemon cake. You should know that I am incredibly susceptible to dessert suggestions. So we pulled some cookbooks off the shelf, and one of us looked at cake recipes while the other one looked at nothing in particular. In the end, “we” settled on a Barefoot Contessa  recipe. I replaced one of the eggs with applesauce, used greek in place of regular yogurt, and increased the amount of zest. But this is really her recipe… and I am happy to make it, and even happier to eat it!

It is awesomesauce!

Lemon Yogurt Cake Recipe

Ingredients

Cake

  • 1 1/2 cup AP flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest (plus a little extra for finishing the cake)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

Syrup

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice

Glaze

  • 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

Directions

Step 1
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and dump the flour, baking powder, and salt into a fine strainer or sifter.
Step 2
Work everything through until you're left with a fluffy mound of dry mix.
Step 3
Now add the yogurt, 1c. of the sugar, eggs, zest, vanilla, and applesauce into the bowl of your mixer.
Step 4
I only had strawberry flavored applesauce in the fridge btw. I thought it might change the color of the cake slightly, but it didn't seem to affect it at all.

Whisk together until thoroughly combined.
Step 5
Slowly add in your dry mix while whisking on low.
Step 6
Take a break once all of the dry mix has been added to give the sides of the bowl a good scrape.
Step 7
Once you're left with a creamy dreamy batter, pour in the vegetable oil.
Step 8
I'll go ahead and say it for you... "Eeewwww!" But if Ina says it's so, well then it's so people... trust in the Contessa!

Ok, so once you've collected yourself from the shock of what a half a cup of oil dump on top of cake batter looks like... gently fold the oil in. You'll end up with a velvety batter that doesn't look oily in the least!
Step 9
So maybe I'm paranoid, or maybe I just do everything the Barefoot Contessa tells me... but I not only greased the loaf pan, but also laid parchment in the bottom. Either way it worked beautifully, so I'm wholeheartedly endorsing the practice.
Step 10
Evenly spread the cake batter into the pan, and bake 50-60 minutes.

Meanwhile, pour the lemon juice over the extra 1/3 c. sugar in a small saucepan.
Step 11
Heat over medium heat just until the sugar dissolves and the whole thing bubbles. Then pull it off the heat and wait on your cake.

I'm sorry I didn't get a shot of the finished syrup. I got distracted with my "helper" pulling out a bowl, sugar, chocolate syrup, and chocolate chips to make a "secret recipe".
Step 12
That is a milk frother in case you were wondering.

Anyway, your cake will officially be done when a cake tester in the center comes out mostly clean.
Step 13
While the cake is still hot pour the lemon syrup all over the top.
Step 14
Now just walk away. Seriously... leave it alone, and just walk away while the syrup seeps into the spongy cake.

Once you're sure the cake is completely cooled, transfer it onto the plate of your choice.
Step 15
The glaze is super simple.

Powdered sugar and lemon juice join forces in a bowl...
Step 16
to become a sweet force to be reckoned with.
Step 17
Pour the glaze over the cake, then sprinkle over the reserved zest.
Step 18
This cake is dense, moist, and just all around yummy.
Step 19
I dare you not to love this.

Lemon Cookies

When I invented these Lemon Cookies and tried them for the first time, I  was immediately proud. I knew they would be made many many more. Not to get weird but when I eat them I can totally imagine myself thirty years from now making them for my grandkids. They are that good. Ok enough getting weird…

I hatched the idea because:

1) Wyatt wanted to make cookies one day, and I’m easily talked into sweets (just ask Brian). I love finally having a little cohort by the way. It’s much more fun to bake for no reason with someone else that thinks it’s a great idea.

and

2) We somehow had a bowlful of 8 or 9 lemons. We had no plans for them, and they weren’t getting any younger. Why not, right?

I decided to use basically the same cookie dough base as my Christmas Snickerdoodles  because, well,  it’s awesome. I added lemon zest and juice into the dough, and then opted for lemon sugar instead of cinnamon sugar for rolling. It seemed so easy to switch up that I wondered if it could possibly work? The answer is “Oh my God YES!”

My mom and sister Mandy were over helping watch the newest addition to our family, Ruby, while Wyatt and I made our experiment. I ended up sending about half of the dough home with them after they tasted these because they loved them so much. We all decided they are Lemondoodles – partly because it’s insanely accurate, and partly because it’s fun to say.

These cookes are little bites of light, chewy, buttery, lemony perfection.

I can’t believe you’re still sitting here. Go make them right now!

Lemon Cookies Recipe

Meal type Dessert

Ingredients

Cookies

  • 1 stick unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest (basically the zest of one lemon)
  • 2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt

Lemon Sugar

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • zest of one lemon

Directions

Step 1
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

Mix the zest of one lemon and 1/2 c sugar together to create the insanely fragrant lemon sugar.
Step 2
I think it's a good idea to make the sugar first, so that it has awhile to infuse with that lemon flavor before you roll the cookie dough in it later.
Step 3
Hold the sugar to the side while you move on to making the dough.

Next drop the butter, shortening, sugar, and 1 tsp lemon zest into the bowl of your mixer.

Cream on medium high for about a minute or so until it's light and fluffy.
Step 4
Add the eggs and lemon juice, and mix again on medium until it's all well incorporated and a beautiful pale yellow.
Step 5
Sift or whisk together the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt.

Add the dry mixture in several rounds until each is just barely combined.
Step 6
Once the last round is just incorporated, carefully scrape down the sides and especially the tricky bottom of the mixing bowl.

Give it all one last very quick mix to make sure all of the dry ingredients are thoroughly worked into the dough.
Step 7
I have a feeling that any size cookie dough balls would work out wonderfully at this point. You'll just need to add a few minutes here or there to your bake time if you opt to go bigger.

I received three different sized cookie dough scoops for Christmas from my mom, and I don't think I can ever go back! I've settled on the large size for my chocolate chip cookies. But for these the medium scooper which makes around a one and a quarter inch ball is perfect.
Step 8
Of course this is not an exact science. You just need a scoop of dough... don't go nuts.

I like to go ahead and do all the scooping in one quick go.
Step 9
Now roll each scoop of dough into a ball, and give them a thorough rolling in the reserved lemon sugar.


Don't be scared to really coat the dough. The more sugar that ends up on the outside, the more delicious lemony crunch you'll enjoy on the finished cookie.
Step 10
Tada... a full sheet of sugar coated Lemon Cookies (well almost, you still might want to bake them).
Step 11
In case you didn't know, I had a baby 5 weeks ago! Her name is Ruby, and she's amazing!

That being said, I really don't need to eat a full batch of cookies. One of the only sad things about finally having your baby is the realization that you can no longer eat like a pregnant lady. *Sigh*

So, in an act of sheer will power, I only made one pan of cookies (this made 20) and sent away the rest of the dough with my mom and sister.

Look at all the deliciousness that I'm missing out on.
Step 12
If you've just had a baby, and you can guilt yourself into holding back some of the dough or if you're just one of those weirdos that never uses a full batch of dough (sacrilege) simply drop the ball of dough into a ziploc and refrigerate it for a later use.
Step 13
By the way, mom and Mandy rolled and baked these straight out of the fridge and said they turned out great.

Bake for 10 minutes at 400 degrees.
Step 14
I really can't decide if these are better warm or at room temperature.
Step 15
I think before I make my final decision on that one I'll need to do some more research...
Step 16
lots and lots of research!

Chocolate Cake Mix Cookies

Here’s the super fast and easy recipe for my Triple Chocolate Cookies… just in time for the holidays! What makes them so fast? They’re chocolate cake mix cookies with some great additions.

They come together so quickly. Your holidays are busy enough, so why not make some awesome cookies with a shortcut? Start with a chocolate cake mix, butter, and eggs. A dash of chocolate syrup plus some chocolate chips, and you’ve got yourself a plateful of soft and chewy triple chocolate cookies!

As you can see, I’ve opted for the red and green semi-sweet chips here. These were Christmas presents, and everyone went nuts by the way! I’ve also made batches of these using mini red and green M&Ms. Of course those were a hit too, because any time you’re talking about candy mixed into cookies, it’s never a bad idea. For any other occasion, I’d stick with plain old semi sweet chips, but feel free to add in any and all of your cookie favorites! I think white chocolate or peanut butter chips would be solid choices.

Hopefully these will make it into your cookie swap rotation like they have mine!

Merry Christmas!

Chocolate Cake Mix Cookies Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 box chocolate cake mix (like Duncan Hines Double Fudge)
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (2sticks) (softened)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon chocolate syrup
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 bag chocolate chips

Directions

Step 1
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Drop 2 sticks of softened unsalted butter into your mixer bowl, and cream 'em up!
Step 2
Add in the boxed cake mix and mix again until incorporated into the butter.

It'll be a chocolatey paste.
Step 3
Crack the egg into a small dish, and add the tablespoon of chocolate syrup.
Step 4
Whisk it all up with a fork,
Step 5
and pour in with the chocolate paste.
Step 6
Mix the syrup in thoroughly (about 30 seconds or so), then add in the cup of flour.

Mix on low at first to make sure you don't get covered in flour. Once it's started to blend into the dough it's fine to increase the speed a bit.

Make sure you don't walk away from the mixer at this point. With cookies it's fine to mix away during the first few steps while you're basically creaming butter and sugar, then also when you're adding the flavoring components. But once you begin adding the flour to cookie dough, you want to stop mixing as soon as the flour is incorporated.

As soon as the flour seems mixed in, scrape the sides and all the way to the bottom of the bowl.
Step 7
I find it easiest to really scrape the bowl well if I take it completely off the mixer stand.

Mix another 10 seconds or so, then dump in your chips!

A lot of folks insist on mixing these in by hand. But in an effort to spare my hands and my spatulas from this super thick dough, I just dump in the bag of chips and mix one last quick time.
Step 8
Roll into roughly one inch balls and space about 2 inches apart on a parchment lined cookie sheet. These don't spread much, so you can fit a lot on one sheet usually.

Bake 10-12 minutes, then cool completely.
Step 9
These are insanely easy, and truly delicious!
Step 10
Enjoy!

Christmas Snickerdoodles

Happy Holidays!

As anyone who knows me could tell you, I love this time of year! I go a little nuts, especially now that I have my little Christmas cohort Wyatt to help. We decorate, read christmas books, watch christmas movies, make crafts, and of course We Bake!

It’s become a tradition that every year for a few weeks I bake like crazy, while across town my mom REALLY bakes like crazy. Then we get together, and in one day we bag up enough cookies and candies to choke an elf! Okay well I guess it probably wouldn’t take too much to actually choke an elf, but we make and bag enough to give as gifts to: mom’s friends, our families, my coworkers, and all of Brian’s clients. If it doesn’t sound like a lot then I’ve said something wrong… it’s insane! But it’s insane in a fun way, especially since my sister Mandy, Brian, and even Wyatt have been recruited to help with the baking and bagging.

Last year I adapted my favorite snickerdoodle recipe ever so slightly to turn them into Christmas Snickerdoodles! This is Trisha Yearwood’s Snickerdoodle Recipe, and it’s absolutely wonderful! I’ve adjusted the amount of salt because I always have unsalted butter on hand so I use that in place of her salted butter, and I’ve really upped the amount of sugar used to roll them in because… well that’s what makes them so darn Christmasy!

Please make these… I promise everyone on your Christmas list will love them!

Christmas Snickerdoodles Recipe

Meal type Dessert
Misc Child Friendly, Freezable, Pre-preparable, Serve Cold, Serve Hot
Occasion Christmas

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cream of tarter
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 5 heaped tablespoons Christmas sugar
  • 2 heaped teaspoons cinnamon

Directions

Step 1
Let's start with the ingredient that transforms these from insanely delicious snickerdoodles into insanely delicious "Christmas" snickerdoodles!

You'll need cinnamon, red sugar, and green sugar.
Step 2
I listed 5 tablespoons of Christmas sugar to 2 teaspoons of cinnamon as the ratio for the dipping/rolling sugar mix.

This is just to give you a guideline of where to start, but please feel free to modify that. I know I always do.
Step 3
The thing is that as you start rolling the dough balls, you'll end up using up the sugar and being left with balls that are mainly rolled in cinnamon. These will taste great... however, if you want the pretty red and green cookies as your finished product, you'll need to add more sugar as you go.

By the time I've made a few batches of these back to back (as I end up doing a lot this time of year) I never know exactly how much sugar or cinnamon are in my mixes... I just keep adding both as I see fit.

I make tons of these during the Christmas season, and I've found that the sugar mix keeps great if it's stored in tupperware when you're done rolling.
Step 4
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, and get ready to sift the dry ingredients.

Add in the flour, cream of tarter, baking soda, and salt to your strainer or sifter.
Step 5
Sift it all into well mixed fluffy pile, then set aside while you ready the creamy stuff!
Step 6
I always crack my eggs into a small bowl first before adding them into the mixer bowl on top of my other ingredients.
Step 7
I've gotten some weird eggs in the past, and let me say that one bad egg can waste a stick of butter faster than Paula Dean!

Stir the eggs up with a fork so that they incorporate into the dough faster.
Step 8
Add the butter, shortening, sugar, and eggs into your mixer bowl.
Step 9
Mix on medium speed for about 1 to 2 minutes.

It should look well blended and creamy.
Step 10
Scoop in about half of your dry mix.
Step 11
Mix until just incorporated, then add the other half.
Step 12
Scrape down the sides and especially the bottom of the bowl, then mix one last time for only about 5 or 10 seconds.

This dough has a perfect soft Play Doh texture, and if I weren't pregnant I'd just want to start eating it right now!
Step 13
To minimize on messy hands and fingers (which wastes more of your colorful sugar mix as it sticks to you instead of the dough) I like to roll all the dough into balls first.

I go ahead and line them up on two large parchment lined cookie sheets.
Step 14
This should make about 50 Christmas Snickerdoodles once they're all rolled out.

Now it's just a matter of getting these guys thoroughly rolled in the red and green sugar mixes... you may need to recruit help for this step.
Step 15
Aren't they adorable already?
Step 16
Pop into the 400 degree oven and bake for about 10 minutes.

When you pull them out, they should be puffed up like this.
Step 17
Let them cool for a few minutes right on the pan, and then carefully transfer them onto cooling racks to finish cooling off.
Step 18
These have become my favorite holiday cookies because they're so stinking cute,
Step 19
and insanely delicious!
Step 20
Merry Christmas!

Nutella Chocolate Cream Pie

I’m not really sure what to say here.

This is a chocolate cream pie made with Nutella! So yeah, it’s pretty much awesome.

I did yet another spin on one of my favorite pies, the Pioneer Woman’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie. A couple weeks ago I made a Biscoff Cream Pie by switching out the Oreos for Biscoff cookies, and the peanut butter for Biscoff spread. It was awesome! So I thought, why not push further? This round I decided to replace the Oreos in the crust with Golden Oreos, and swap out the peanut butter with Nutella. I hate to say I’m a genius, but while eating this pie it was hard not to at least feel kinda smart. Ok, so technically I guess if anyone is the genius here it would have to be Ree Drummond… but I like to think of myself as at least a half bright sidekick.

Alright, I’m gonna stop rambling!

Please try this pie, and let me know what you think!

Nutella Chocolate Cream Pie Recipe

Meal type Dessert
Misc Pre-preparable, Serve Cold

Ingredients

Filling

  • 1 cup Nutella (or another chocolate hazelnut spread)
  • 8oz softened cream cheese
  • 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 8oz thawed Cool Whip

Crust

  • 25 Golden Oreos
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (melted and cooled)

Topping

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar

Directions

Step 1
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and grab a food processor!

Dump in 25 oreos. The Pioneer Woman has already done the Oreo math for us... so who's to argue?
Step 2
Pulse until you're left with some insanely delicious smelling sand.
Step 3
Remove the blade from the processor, and pour in the melted and cooled butter.
Step 4
Give everything a good stir to ensure that every crumb gets a touch of the butter.
Step 5
Pile all of your buttery crumbs into the center of a pie pan,
Step 6
and press into place using clean hands (you can tell I'm constantly talking to a four year old).

Follow up with a final pressing using a measuring cup.
Step 7
I wouldn't say that pressing pie crusts into pans is one of my talents.
Step 8
Let's just call this one "rustic" and throw it into the preheated oven for about 7 minutes.

This smells soooo good!
Step 9
Now onto the REALLY sinful stuff!

Add the cream cheese and the cup of Nutella into your mixer.
Step 10
Beat on medium high until it's one big creamy mess.
Step 11
Dump in the powdered sugar.
Step 12
Beat for about a minute; scrape down the sides; beat a few more seconds to fully absorb the sugar.
Step 13
Scoop the entire 8oz container of Cool Whip into the mixer, and beat on medium high for about a minute.
Step 14
Thoroughly scrape down the sides of the bowl. Take special care to really scrape underneath the pile of fluff to the bottom to get any dark brown Nutella goodness off the bowl and into the mix!
Step 15
Give it another good beating until it's beautifully creamy and fluffy.
Step 16
Fill your cooled pie crust with your creamy chocolatey goodness, and refrigerate for several hours.
Step 17
Whenever you're ready to serve your pie (or eat it yourself... no one is judging here), I think it's best topped with some whipped cream.

The cream cuts the sweet richness of the pie a touch. Plus it's just not chocolate cream pie to me without some whipped cream.

Pour the cream into your mixer, along with the vanilla.
Step 18
Whisk on high around a minute or so. It should look thickened, and leave a soft peak on the beater when you lift it out.
Step 19
Here's a look inside the bowl at this phase to give you an idea of what to look for.
Step 20
Add the powdered sugar, and whisk on high for a few more seconds to thicken the cream a bit more.
Step 21
Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and whisk one last quick time.
Step 22
I wanted my whipped cream nice and thick, but whisk it a little less if you prefer a looser whipped cream.
Step 23
Feel free to plop it right on top of your pie, or you can put it into a fancy piping bag like mine... aka a gallon sized ziploc bag.
Step 24
Snip off one corner,
Step 25
and voila!
Step 26
Look at how rich and creamy!
Step 27
This one is definitely not for the faint of heart!

I think it's actually sweeter than a regular chocolate pudding pie.
Step 28
But if you've got a glass of milk and a can-do attitude... why not?!!
Step 29
Yum, yum, and double yum!