Monday, March 25, 2013

Root Beer Cupcakes

Soda in cupcakes?  

My initial reaction to this recipe was skepticism.  I mean really?  Soda in cupcakes? 

But I love to try all the weird could-be-amazing, could-be-Clorox-my-mouth-out-awful recipes!

These turned out to be delicious!! Especially if you are a fan of Root Beer.  The frosting added the perfect compliment to the cupcake as well.

I made them as mini's but you could definitely do normal sized cupcakes as well!

Root Beer Cupcakes
Recipe Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Ingredients For Cupcakes:

2 cups root beer
1 cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs

Directions For Cupcakes:

 -Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small saucepan, heat the root beer, cocoa powder and butter over medium heat until the butter is melted. Add the sugars and whisk until dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool. (It was 30 something degrees outside so I put the pan on our deck, but a freezer would work too if you want to speed up the process!)
-In a large bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, and salt together. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs until just beaten then stir them into the cooled cocoa mixture until combined. Fold the liquid and flour mixtures together in the large bowl. The batter will be slightly lumpy. Make sure not to over-beat or the cupcakes will be a bit tougher.
-Fill cupcake liners about 2/3 to 3/4 full and bake cupcakes until a tester inserted into the center of each comes out clean, about 17 minutes for normal sized and about 10 for mini's. 

Ingredients For Frosting:

 1 1/2 cups heavy or whipping cream
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions For Frosting:

Beat the ingredients together with a mixer until soft peaks form.  This frosting is basically like homemade whipped topping so think about the thickness of that when you make this.  

You can decorate the tops however you want, add a cherry for extra cuteness and deliciousness if you'd like!  Happy Baking!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Oreo, Oreo Cupcakes

My cousin is graduating from high school this may.  Graduation=graduation party which=food which=CUPCAKES! 

My aunt has asked me to make all the cupcakes for the party!  So of course I have to test out recipes before I let a bunch of people eat them!  

He wanted Oreo cupcakes, so out of the oven popped these little beauties!

Oreo, Oreo Cupcakes
Recipe Adapted from Instructables 

You Will Need:

1 family size package regular Oreo Cookies (If you want a lot of chunks in your batter get two regular sized packages)
1 package Mini Oreo Cookies

1 chocolate cake mix and ingredients called for on box, or ingredients for your favorite recipe
 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
3 3/4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions For The Cake

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
Mix packaged cake mix or personal recipe according to directions (do not bake). 
Put liners in the cupcake pan and place a regular size Oreo cookie in the bottom of each liner. 
Use half of the remaining Oreos to chop up into pieces and fold them into the cake batter.
Fill tins about 3/4 full
Bake for 15 minutes, time can vary depending on oven differences and the amount of Oreo chunks used.  The tops of the cupcakes may fall a bit after you take them out of the oven due to the Oreo creme but the frosting will hide it!

Directions For The Frosting

Cream together butter and cream cheese until completely blended. 

Add vanilla, then add powdered sugar slowly until mixed well. 
Use a food processor or a blender to grind the remaining Oreos into a fine powder like substance.
Add the Oreos to the frosting and mix well. (works best with a mixer)
After frosting the cupcakes place a mini Oreo on top for decoration!


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Mint Oreo Brownies

I decided to make these because my mom's favorite ice cream is mint chip.  I figured these would mimic the yummy minty flavor.

They turned out to be delicious!

Mint Oreo Brownies
Recipe adapted from Six Sisters' Stuff

 This recipe called for a brownie mix, and I went with that for time's sake, but you could definitely use your favorite homemade brownie recipe!


7 oz of marshmallow creme
1/8 teaspoon mint extract
green food color
1 box brownie mix 
Ingredients called for on box
3/4 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup vanilla frosting, store bought or homemade
18 mint creme Oreo cookies, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray your pan (I used 9x13 but you could adjust depending on how thick you want the bars) with non-stick.  

In a bowl, mix your marshmallow creme, mint extract and 6-8 drops of food color until the color is evenly dispersed.
Mix together the brownie batter according to box directions (or according to your recipe's directions!).  Pour the batter into your pan.  Drop 4-5 spoonfuls of your marshmallow mixture onto the batter (make sure you save some for the frosting!).  Using a knife, swirl the marshmallow into the brownie batter. 

Bake 25-28 minutes, adjusting if you used a different sized pan.  Let cool completely. 

In a small bowl, microwave the white chocolate chips in 30 second intervals until melted.  Stir the melted chips and the frosting into the marshmallow mixture and add a few more drops of food coloring.  (I have heard the frosting is perfect, and I've heard it is too rich.  If you aren't the biggest fan of frosting cut down the 1 Cup vanilla frosting to 2/3 Cup and use a little more marshmallow when you swirl.)

Spread over the brownies once cool and then sprinkle with the Oreos, and press them into frosting slightly.

Cut and serve!!

Monday, March 18, 2013

St. Patty's Day Sugar Cookies

Boy am I glad spring break happened over St. Patty's Day!  It gave me an excuse to buy new cookie cutters and make adorable sugar cookies!

I took these to a friend's house for our St. Patrick's Day get together and I did not bring a single one home!  I actually had to take them away so there would still be some when the rest of the group arrived!

St. Patrick's Day Sugar Cookies

You can use your favorite sugar cookie recipe, but I'll give you the one I use just in case.


3 Cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Cup butter, softened (I like to use unsalted)
1 Cup sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla
food coloring if you want


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Whisk together the flour and salt and then set aside. 

Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.  This is much, much easier with a mixer!  Add the egg and vanilla to the butter mixture and mix until fully combined.

Slowly add the flour to the butter mixture until both are fully incorporated.  

If you are putting food coloring in your cookie dough, do so now.  Mix until the color is evenly dispersed.  

Now it's time to roll out the dough.  Divide the dough into sections and roll them into disc shaped balls.  What I find to be the easiest is to roll out the dough between two pieces of parchment paper.  Make sure you use rulers or something else so that you roll out the pieces evenly.  (I used two magazines.)  Stack the rolled out pieces on a cookie sheet (parchment, cookie dough, parchment etc...) and place them in the fridge for about 20 minutes so they firm up.  

After you take the cookie dough out of the fridge separate the pieces and cut out the cookies!  I find it is also easiest to bake them on parchment paper too so they don't stick.  Arrange the cookies on the cookie sheet at least 1/2 apart.

Bake them for 8-10 minutes.  Bake time will depend on your oven and the thickness of your cookies so I would check them at 8 min and go from there.  The edges should be just barely golden brown when they're cooked.

Frosting Time!


Confectioner's Sugar
Liquid Pasteurized Egg Whites
Warm Water
Vanilla or other Extract 

For the icing there are two different  recipes.  One for the piping icing, and one for the flood icing.  The piping icing is used to outline and section off parts of the cookie.  It is thicker than the flood icing.  The flood icing is used to fill in the sections of the cookie.  Recipes can be doubled if you are making a lot of cookies/colors.

Piping icing:
2 cups powdered sugar
3 Tablespoons egg whites
1 Tablespoon warm water
1 teaspoon extract 

Mix all ingredients together with an electric mixer until the consistency resembles toothpaste, maybe a little less dense.  I always check by making small loops with the frosting on a napkin and if they fill in  then the frosting is not thick enough.

Flood Icing:
2 cups powdered sugar
3 Tablespoons egg whites
3 Tablespoons warm water
1 Tablespoon extract

Mix ingredients together until the icing is thicker than water, but thin enough that it spreads out when placed on a surface.  Should take about fiveish minutes. 

For coloring the icings, I like to use the liquid food coloring just because it's easier to mix, but any kind will work.  I like to start with five drops of whatever color I'm using and go from there.  Make sure that if you are not working with the icing that it is covered up.  This icing will stiffen quickly.  

The best thing I've ever invested in for cookie decorating is squeeze bottles.  I bought them for $1 each at the store and they have saved so much time and mess!  I definitely recommend getting yourself some.  

How I Decorated My Cookies


Outline the clover with green piping, flood with green

Outline the pot with green piping, make the gold on top with yellow piping, flood with green

Use white piping to outline the rainbow and separate the cloud section.  With yellow piping, pipe the middle color in the rainbow.  Use blue and red flood icing to color in the other sections.  To add a little texture I used real frosting and a tip to make the clouds.

These were a great addition to our St. Patrick's Day celebrations!  Let me know how they turn out for you!  =]

RumChata Cupcakes

I'm currently home for spring break.  Which means I have an entire kitchen at my disposal!

Exciting, right?

During this week is one of my mother's good friend's birthday.  So, naturally, she asked me to bake something for the little get together!

Now, her favorite thing to drink recreationaly is RumChata and I remembered seeing a recipe on Pinterest for RumChata cupcakes!

No brainer right?  I just had to make them!

RumChata Cupcakes
Recipe Adapted from Love Life and Creative Things

What you'll need for the cupcakes:

1/2 cup butter (1 stick, at room temperature)
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup RumChata
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
4 egg whites


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the sugar and the butter and beat until fluffy. (Definitely use a mixer if you have one)

Mix together flour, baking powder, salt, & cinnamon, then set aside.

Mix the RumChata & vanilla together, and set aside.  (They will not completely mix together.)

Add in part of the flour mixture, then part of the Rum Chata mixture and repeat until both are fully incorporated. 

In a mixing bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks form.  This is much easier with a mixer but a whisk will work if that's all you've got.

Fold egg whites in to the batter with a spatula.

Fill the cupcake liners 2/3 full and bake 20 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.  

This batter is very thick and makes pretty dense cupcakes, kind of like muffins almost.  The tops are harder than normal for cupcakes.  I'm going to make these again but change the recipe in hopes to make them more cakey. I will do another post to let you all know how it turned out!

For the frosting:

12 ounces of cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup of butter,softened
1/2 tsp of vanilla
5 tbsp of RumChata
1 bag of powdered sugar (2 lb. bag)


Combine butter and cream cheese until smooth
Add vanilla
Slowly add the powdered sugar
Mix in RumChata, you can add more or less depending on thickness
When everything is fully combined you are ready to frost the cupcakes!

Now, this recipe makes a TON of frosting.  If you don't like to use a lot you could easily cut the recipe in half.  This recipe is also very, very sweet.  I'm going to try using a different recipe next time I make these so it isn't so over-the-top sweet.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Deep Dish Oatmeal Chocolate Cookie Bars

One day (during class I'm sure) I was wasting time, as usual, on Pinterest and came across these delectable little treats. 

To me they looked like a little piece of heaven on earth.  I'm a little bit of an oatmeal freak.  (Let's face it, I'm just a food freak in general)  If a recipe has oatmeal in it then I have got to try it.

So last night, my friend Beth was going through my Pinterest board trying to decide what to make.  I was delighted when she chose these!

Deep Dish Oatmeal Chocolate Cookie Bars
Recipe Acquired From

 You will need:

For The Cookie Part
2 sticks of butter or margarine
2 eggs
2 1/2 Cups of flour (I used whole wheat)
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 Cups of brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla 
1/3 Cup of milk
3 Cups of oatmeal
For The Chocolate Part
1 can of sweetened condensed milk (I used nonfat and it turned out fine!)
1/3 Cup of butter or margarine 
1 tsp. vanilla
2 Cups of chocolate chips (I used 1 Cup of dark chocolate and 1 Cup of milk)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together the butter, eggs, and brown sugar.

Add in vanilla and milk.

Mix all the dry ingredients together, and slowly incorporate them into the wet ingredient mixture.

In a saucepan over medium heat mix together the sweetened condensed milk, butter, vanilla, and chocolate chips until fully melted together.  

When both parts are prepared, spread 3/4 of the cookie mixture over the bottom of a 9x13 pan.  Pour the chocolate mixture over the top, and then place spoonfuls of the leftover cookie mixture on top.  

Bake for 25-30 mintues, until the top starts to brown.

Make sure you let the bars cool almost completely before cutting into them or the chocolate will go everywhere!

**Next time I make this I'm going to try baking the bottom layer for 5-10 minutes before I cover with chocolate and top layer to make it more crunchy like**

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Cinnamon Almond Banana Bread

Who doesn't love banana bread?  I don't know anyone who doesn't.  Especially after they've eaten this banana bread!

For reals.  This is the BEST banana bread I've ever eaten.

Every time I go home my mom pulls out all the bananas she's saved and demands I make this. 

And, if you use whole wheat flour and whatever kind of fancy healthy butter you like it's not too awful for you!

Cinnamon Almond Banana Bread
Recipe adapted from: Amandeline

You'll need: 

2 Cups of flour, all purpose or whole wheat (I used wheat)
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 Cup of butter, or fancy healthy fake butter--softened
3/4 Cup of brown sugar
2 eggs--beaten
6-7 medium mashed ripened bananas 
Almond slices (optional)

Preheat your oven to 350 Degrees Celsius.  Grease whatever size pan you are using, you can use a 9x5 and have one big one, or an 8x5 and make two, or do what I did and make three small loaves!  (Baking times will need to be slightly adjusted depending on pan size)

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

In a separate bowl, use a mixer to cream together the brown sugar and butter.  (If you are a poor college student cooking out of your friends dorm and don't have a mixer you can melt the butter, mix the two, and place in the fridge for a little while to let it firm up a bit)  

Stir in the eggs and mashed bananas until fully incorporated.

Stir the flour mixture into the banana mixture until just moistened, be careful not to over mix. 

Pour the batter into the pan of choice and sprinkle with the almond slices if you are using them. (I like to break the slices up a bit before I put them on top.)

If you are using one big pan, bake in in the oven for about 60-65 minutes.  If using two pans I'd start it out at 40-45 minutes and go from there, and we found that using the tiny pan to make three took about 35 minutes each.  Always check with a knife or toothpick to make sure it's baked through though.

Eat it fresh out of the oven for the most wonderful deliciousness.  But hurry, because it definitely won't last long!

Friday, March 1, 2013


Where I'm from when someone says "Scotcharoo" it's usually accompanied with "I LOVE Scotcharoos!" or, "They're my favorite!" 

Because of this I find it a bit strange that I had never made them before now.  My mom doesn't even make them. (My mom doesn't really bake anything though)  I think I may have had them once at a tailgate party. 

However!  My Scotcharoo-less days are officially over! 

And I have to say I think I did a pretty good job for my first time.  =]



1 cup sugar
1 cup corn syrup
1 cup chunky peanut butter
1 tbl maple syrup
2 tbl honey
6-7 cups Rice Krispies
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 cups butterscotch chips

Mix sugar, corn syrup, maple syrup, and honey together in a saucepan.  Put over medium heat and stir frequently until it starts to bubble. 

Remove from heat and stir in the peanut butter until fully incorporated.

Measure out the Rice Krispies in a large mixing bowl and pour syrup and peanut butter mixture over top.  Mix well.

Press the Rice Krispie mixture into a buttered 9x13 pan (works best to use the back of a buttered spoon)

Melt the butterscotch and chocolate chips in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted.

Pour over the pressed Rice Krispies and spread evenly on surface.

Place in the refrigerator until the chocolate is set.  Cut and serve!

These turned out to be delicious!  My friends fought over who got to eat the last few!

S'mores Cereal Bars

Fun fact about me: I'm in a sorority, and I am currently the fundraising chair.  What does this have to do with baking?  Good question! 

I organized a bake sale fundraiser at a fish fry with a local church with the help of one of my sisters that attends it!  Not so surprising with my obsession is it?  

Everyone had to bake something to bring, and lucky me I got to make S'mores Bars for the very first time!  I adapted this recipe from  Macaroni and Cheesecake but switched it up a bit to make it more my own.

S'mores Cereal Bars


What you'll need: 

1 10oz. Bag of mini marshmallows
1 12oz. Bag of chocolate chips (whichever you prefer)
5 Tablespoons of butter
7 Cups of Golden Gram cereal (or something similar)
1 1/2-2 Tablespoons of Honey



Measure out the cereal into a large mixing bowl.

Melt the butter in a medium sized saucepan.

When completely melted add all but about a cup's worth of the bag of marshmallows to the pan and stir until almost completely melted.  

Add the honey and stir until fully incorporated. (If you want a distinct honey taste add at least 2 Tablespoons.)

Pour marshmallow over the cereal and stir until coated, then mix in chocolate chips and remaining marshmallows.

Press into a 9x13 pan (or smaller if you want thicker bars) and refrigerate until set.  (I left mine in for about 20 minutes)

**I found that it helped to rub the back of a spoon with butter and then  use that to press the bars into the pan.**

Cut and serve!

**This was definitely a favorite at the bake sale!  I made two batches and they all sold!**