Chocolate Snowflake Cookies

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Single digit temps call for chocolate and cookies, right? Why not pipe a cute snowflake on top to really feel the winter spirit! But in all honesty, I despise winter. Worst season. Full on seasonal depression going on over here. So I baked some delicious cookies and made them pretty with a snowflake and crystal sugar. It helped the blues a little bit, they are very tasty 🙂

So, if you are stuck inside because of the cold and snow, make these! They will not disappoint..

What you will need:

Cookie sheet lined with parchment paper

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temp
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon molasses
Cookie cutter of choice

For the icing:

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon light corn syrup
3 teaspoons milk (+/-)

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Set aside. In another bowl, beat together butter and sugar until creamy. Beat in egg, vanilla and molasses until combined. The mixture might be a bit lumpy which is ok. Add in the flour mixture in 3 small batches, beating slowly and well before each addition until the dough comes together.

Separate the dough into 2 small balls and wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. Roll one of the dough balls on a lightly floured surface to be about 1/8 of an inch thick. Cut with desired cookie shapes and place on prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until edges are just starting to brown. Allow to cool on a wire rack completely.

To make the icing, just mix all the ingredients together until you reach desired consistency. Pipe onto cooled cookies. Allow to dry before storing and covering.

Enjoy!

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Chocolate Chunk Sea Salt Cookies

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Happy 2019! It took me 2 weeks but what better way to begin my blogging this year than with a chocolate chip cookie? A chocolate CHUNK and sea salt cookie! So freaking good, so irresistible. Seriously, they should be illegal. But, they’re not so let’s indulge, right? They are the perfect dessert or after school/work snack and they are actually really easy to make. The recipe below makes about 15 cookies and can easily be doubled if need be. So… let’s get started…

What you will need:

Cookie sheet lined with parchment paper

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temp
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 oz. chopped semi-sweet chocolate (I used Baker’s chocolate)
Coarse sea salt for topping

In a bowl, whisk together flour and baking soda. Set aside. In another bowl, beat together the butter and both sugars until smooth and creamy. Add in egg and vanilla and beat until incorporated. Slowly add in flour mixture until just combined. Stir in chocolate chunks. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate while oven is preheating (or as long as overnight).

Preheat oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit. Drop cookie dough by spoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheet. Top each cookie with sea salt using either your fingers or a grinder.

Look how delicious it looks!

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Bake for about 8-10 minutes. Cool for 1 minute before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Store in an airtight container at room temp. Enjoy!

 

Vegan Chocolate Cake

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No butter, eggs or milk in this super dark chocolate cake! How is that possible? Science! This cake is super moist and delicious, it will probably be my new go-to birthday cake recipe. I topped it with not-so-vegan peanut butter buttercream for my husbands 37th birthday. YUM! If you want to keep the entire cake vegan, though, use whatever frosting you like 🙂 I provided the cake recipe and the buttercream recipe that I used in this post.

Also, this recipe only made an 8 x 8 inch pan, but you can easily double it for a 9 x 13 if you’re feeding more people. The buttercream however, will probably cover it. It makes a ton, I have some left over in my fridge which will probably (definitely) be eaten with a spoon when I’m hungry 😉 And last but not least, this cake is SO EASY to make! no mixer required, just a bowl and spoon and you are done!

So here we go! Let’s go make a vegan cake!

What you will need:

8 x 8 inch baking dish, greased

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon white vinegar
5 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 cup water

For the buttercream:

1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temp
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 teaspoons milk
2 cups powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cocoa powder and sugar. Add in vanilla, vinegar, oil and and water and stir until combined. Pour into prepared dish and bake for 25-30 minutes. Allow to cool completely before frosting. Note: if you doubled the recipe, you will need to bake longer so just keep an eye on it.

For the buttercream, beat together the butter and peanut butter until smooth. Add in vanilla, milk and powdered sugar and beat until completely smooth and you reach desired consistency. Spread over top of cooled cake.

Slice and enjoy!

Store covered at room temp.

M&M Pudding Cookies!

Perfect for Christmas but really, you can use any color M&M’s in these delicious pudding cookies! I found a similar recipe for these on Betty Crocker’s website and thought I would give them a try as part of my Christmas cookie platter! I’m so glad I did. They are so pretty and literally melt in your mouth. Santa is definitely going to eat a whole bunch of these when he visits our house tonight 😉

We have no time! It’s Christmas Eve! Hurry up and make these cookies!

What you will need:

Cookie sheet lined with parchment paper

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter at room temp
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 box vanilla instant pudding mix
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups M&M’s

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside. In another large bowl, beat together butter and both sugars until creamy and smooth. Beat in pudding mix. Beat in eggs, one at a time until combined. Add vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture until just combined. Stir in M&M’s.

Drop on baking sheet by rounded tablespoons. Bake for 9-11 minutes. Cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Store in an airtight container in room temp. Enjoy and Merry Christmas!

Butter Cookies

Merry Christmas everyone! Holy cow does time fly as you get older. So many more things to do, stuff to buy, food to make and cookies to bake. Being a kid is so much better 😆 Anyway… here we are, the weekend before and we are starting off with these beauties. Actually I already made rum balls, you can find that recipe here.

These cookies are so pretty and perfect for gift giving because they last longer than chewy cookies. However, your arms and hands will get a work out! Piping this dough is really tough, but so worth it in the end!

Here is how they look before they are baked…

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What you will need:

Cookie sheets lined with parchment paper
Piping bag with big star tip (I used a Wilton 1M)

1 cup unsalted butter at room temp
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1-2 teaspoons milk
Chocolate and sprinkles for decorating (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar and salt until combined. Add in yolks and vanilla and beat until incorporated. Slowly add in flour until just combined, adding milk to reach piping consistency. Dough is thick.

Add dough to piping bag and pipe small circles onto prepared baking sheet. Refrigerate at least 10 minutes so cookies do not spread while baking.

Bake for 12-15 minutes or until just beginning to brown on the edges. Allow to cool for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Dip in melted chocolate and decorate with sprinkles as desired!

Store in an airtight container either in the fridge or at room temp. Enjoy!

Makes 25-30 cookies

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Super Easy Fruit Cake

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Super easy fruit cake! Oh my gosh I can’t believe I finally made one! I’ve never liked fruit cake before, I think it’s the green cherries that some people put in theirs. I’m sorry but ew. So I left those out of mine. I also left out raisins. I also left out rum and I wish now that I added it. Fruit cake is still a meh for me. It’s good, but not delicious! I don’t know if I’ll ever make it again. If I do, I’ll let you know and blog about it because I would change some things.

I know some people really like fruit cake, but to me it tastes like something you’d eat at your great grandma’s house. It just has a 1950’s feel. LOL I don’t know it’s so weird to me. But I wanted to share with you all that I made this so if you are interested in making one, too here you go!

What you will need:

1 loaf pan greased and lined with parchment paper

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts)
10 oz. pitted dates, chopped
1/2 cup halved maraschino cherries
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 300 degrees fahrenheit. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Set aside. In another large bowl, stir together the nuts, dates and cherries. Set aside. In a small bowl, beat eggs until foamy. Stir in vanilla.

Pour flour mixture into fruit mixture and stir until combined. Pour egg mixture into the fruit and flour mixture until combined. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for about an hour.

Allow to cool 10 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely on a wire rack.

Store covered at room temp. Enjoy!

It’s definitely pretty!

Applesauce Muffins

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It’s snowing here in Chicago and I must admit, I’m listening to Christmas music as I bake these! Why not, right?! I just love this time of year. It makes me so happy! I decided to make these muffins for an after school snack. Also, if we all like them, I’ll make them again next week because we are going on a road trip to Mississippi for Thanksgiving. Yes, it will be a looong drive, but it will be nice to see and spend time with my father-in-law. We haven’t been to visit him since Liam was 2 so it’ll be great to make more memories and this time Liam will remember it 🙂

These muffins are super easy to make and you can easily double the recipe if you are having a big party. Or, you can even freeze them! But the recipe here makes 24 mini muffins or 12 regular. So, go put some tunes on, preheat your ovens and let’s get baking!

What you will need:

Muffin tin sprayed with non-stick spray

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temp
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup unsweetened applesauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and spices. Set aside. In another bowl, beat together the butter and sugar. Add in egg and vanilla and beat until incorporated. Beat in applesauce. Slowly stir in flour mixture until just combined. Fill muffin tin a little over halfway and bake for 10 minutes if using a mini pan, or 18-22 if using a regular sized pan.  Allow to cool slightly before taking muffins out and cooling on a wire rack.

Enjoy! Store covered at room temp.