Cake Batter Blondie Bars

These Cake Batter Blondie Bars are filled with cake batter flavor, without the use of a cake mix.  And you can’t go wrong with any dessert that is packed with sprinkles!

These Cake Batter Blondie Bars are filled with cake batter flavor, without the use of a cake mix.  And you can't go wrong with any dessert that is packed with sprinkles!

You guys.  These bars are the best things ever.  Ever.

They are straight out of my bloggy BFF Dorothy’s cookbook, Dessert Mash-Ups.  You read Dorothy’s blog, Crazy For Crust, right?  Hers was one of the first blogs I started reading on a regular basis when I started my own blog, and Dorothy was one of the first blogger friends I made.  Seems weird, right?  That you can make these invisible internet friends who sometimes know you better than the friends you have in real life.

Except I’ve met Dorothy in real life a few times and she’s just as sweet and awesome as she is on her blog.  And now she’s a famous cookbook author and it makes me feel super cool to say I know a cookbook author in real life. ;-)

These Cake Batter Blondie Bars are filled with cake batter flavor, without the use of a cake mix.  And you can't go wrong with any dessert that is packed with sprinkles!

Dessert Mash-Ups is super cool because it’s packed with two-fers.  Desserts like Cinnamon Roll Cookies and Snickers Cake Rolls and Death By Chocolate Brownie Cake (OMG!!), and breakfasts (but better!) like Overnight Pumpkin Cheesecake French Toast and Carrot Cake Coffee Cake and Chocolate Chip Monkey Bread Muffins.

Believe me, you’re going to want to make everything in this drool-worthy cookbook.  Starting with these Cake Batter Blondie Bars.

These Cake Batter Blondie Bars are filled with cake batter flavor, without the use of a cake mix.  And you can't go wrong with any dessert that is packed with sprinkles!

These bad boys are super soft, taste just like cake batter (without the use of a cake mix!), and are packed full of sprinkles – pretty much a dessert requirement, if you ask me.

Doodle ate one of these bars just after my photo shoot (actually, he started mid-shoot, see photo above), and immediately asked for a second.  For a kid who usually eats just frosting, polishing off an entire blondie is super high praise.  Make sure you go buy Dorothy’s book – you won’t be sorry!

Cake Batter Blondie Bars

Cake Batter Blondie Bars

Ingredients

    For the blondies:
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon butter extract
  • 1/2 cup sprinkles
  • For the frosting:
  • 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon whole milk
  • sprinkles, for topping

Instructions

    To make the blondies:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9x13 pan with cooking spray. You may also line the pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together baking powder, salt and flour. Set aside.
  3. Using an electric mixer, cream together the granulated sugar, brown sugar and butter. Add the eggs, vanilla and butter extract and beat to combine. Add the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Stir in the sprinkles.
  4. Press the dough into your prepared pan. It's going to be very sticky, and that's just what you want! Spray your hands with cooking spray so the dough won't stick to your hands.
  5. Bake the blondies for 22 to 24 minutes. They'll be slightly golden but just a little jiggly in the middle. They will set as they cool. Allow the blondies to cool completely before frosting.
  6. To make the frosting:
  7. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Slowly add in the powdered sugar and mix until crumbly. Add in the vanilla and milk and mix until smooth. Frost the blondies. Top with additional sprinkles.
  8. Store covered at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/cake-batter-blondie-bars/

XO, Ashley

 

 

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Classic Pumpkin Pie

When the holidays roll around, there is just nothing like a Classic Pumpkin Pie.  Even better – it’s super simple to prepare and is always a hit at the table.  With just 15 minutes of prep time, your holiday planning just got off to a quick start! 

When the holidays roll around, there is just nothing like a Classic Pumpkin Pie.  Even better - it's super simple to prepare and is always a hit at the table.  With just 15 minutes of prep time, your holiday planning just got off to a quick start!

I think sometimes food bloggers sometimes get so focused on creating the next newest and biggest twist on the original that we often forget about the basics.  The classics.  The good old staples that many home cooks want to make.

I’m just as guilty as the next blogger.  But as I started to think about what I want to make for the holidays, pumpkin pie always, always tops the list.  And my family doesn’t typically go for twists on the originals – not when it comes to the traditional holiday meal.  It’s not that they wouldn’t try it…but what always gets devoured at the Thanksgiving meal is pumpkin pie.  We make lots of ‘em, and there is never any left.

We go to town on good old easy, classic pumpkin pies and the double-decker pie is infamous at the Simpson family gathering.

When the holidays roll around, there is just nothing like a Classic Pumpkin Pie.  Even better - it's super simple to prepare and is always a hit at the table.  With just 15 minutes of prep time, your holiday planning just got off to a quick start!

Pumpkin pie isn’t hard to make – and I’ll be honest here: I’m not pureeing my own pumpkin.  Quite honestly, I simply don’t have time to do it – and most of us don’t, especially when you’re planning a full traditional sit-down meal for 20+ people.  With that many people, one pumpkin pie isn’t going to cut it. ;-)  And if your family is like mine, they like the canned stuff just as well – or wouldn’t even notice the difference.

And believe me, when you jazz up that canned pumpkin with fall spices like cinnamon and nutmeg and add in a bunch of heavy cream, people will gobble this up like nobody’s business.  The great thing about this easy classic pumpkin pie is that it really only requires a few ingredients, and just a handful of minutes to prepare.  So you can check dessert off your list and spend your time focusing on those more labor-intensive dishes.

When the holidays roll around, there is just nothing like a Classic Pumpkin Pie.  Even better - it's super simple to prepare and is always a hit at the table.  With just 15 minutes of prep time, your holiday planning just got off to a quick start!

Tell me: does your family go more for pumpkin pie, apple pie, or pecan pie?  Or something else altogether?  I’m sure it comes as no surprise that I love them all. I’m an equal opportunity dessert-ist. :-)

Easy Classic Pumpkin Pie

Easy Classic Pumpkin Pie

Ingredients

  • 1 refrigerated pie crust (or make your own)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pure pumpkin (NOT pumpkin puree)
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs, divided
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • course sugar for sprinkling, optional (like sugar in the raw)

Instructions

  1. Place a large cookie sheet on the middle oven rack and preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Unroll pie crust and place in the bottom of of a 9-inch pie plate. Crimp the edges of the crust and pierce holes in the bottom of the crust with the tines of a fork.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, cream, granulated sugar, 2 eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla and salt.
  4. In a small bowl, beat the remaining egg and lightly brush it on the crust edge; sprinkle with coarse sugar.
  5. Pour the pumpkin pie filling into the crust. Place pie pan on preheated cookie sheet and bake until just set around the edges, approximately 50 to 60 minutes (the middle will still jiggle slightly, and that's okay).
  6. Transfer pie to a rack and let cool completely. Serve with whipped cream, if desired.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/classic-pumpkin-pie/

If you need other traditional recipes for your holiday table, be sure to check these out (click picture to go to the recipe):

how-to-brine-a-turkey-title

This Ultimate Green Bean Casserole is a fresh spin on the classic, using fresh mushrooms and cream to replace the traditionally used canned condensed soup. #recipes #thanksgiving #side dishes

cranberry-sauce-titlePM

Did you know you can make dinner rolls - yeast ones, at that - in just 30 minutes? It's true! These 30-Minute Dinner Rolls are so easy to make you'll never go store-bought again.

XO, Ashley

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Reese’s Pieces No Fail Fudge

In just a few short minutes {no candy thermometer needed!} you can have this Reese’s Pieces No Fail Fudge chilling and ready to go!

In just a few short minutes {no candy thermometer needed!} you can have this Reese's Pieces No-Fail Fudge chilling and ready to go!

You know what I’m doing today? Completely destroying my diet – and maybe yours, too, if you decide to make this super duper easy Reese’s Pieces No Fail Fudge.

When I say no fail – that’s just what I mean. There’s no candy thermometer involved here, no bringing the candy mixture to a certain temperature. None of those pesky candy-making tools.  We’re just stirring a few ingredients together and letting them simmer for about 5 minutes.  The hardest part about this fudge recipe is waiting for the candy to cool so that you can eat it.

In just a few short minutes {no candy thermometer needed!} you can have this Reese's Pieces No-Fail Fudge chilling and ready to go!

My very favorite chocolate/peanut butter candy is Reese’s Pieces.  And they are the perfect accompaniment to this easy chocolate fool-proof fudge.  I mean – what’s better than the combination of peanut butter and chocolate? ;-)  Plus, the colors of the Reese’s Pieces are just perfect for fall parties.

This recipe makes a ton of fudge – and it is definitely super sweet, so it is a great recipe to make during the holidays when you have lots of events and people to share it with.  Or you can keep it all for yourself; I won’t judge you.

In just a few short minutes {no candy thermometer needed!} you can have this Reese's Pieces No-Fail Fudge chilling and ready to go!

 

Reese’s Pieces No Fail Fudge

Reese’s Pieces No Fail Fudge

Ingredients

  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup evaporated milk
  • 3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) butter
  • 1 (7 ounce) jar marshmallow creme
  • 1 (12 ounce) package semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup Reese's Pieces candy pieces, divided

Instructions

  1. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper and spray with non-stick spray.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine sugar, milk and butter over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring often. Reduce heat and allow to simmer for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; add marshmallow creme and chocolate chips, stirring until the mixture is smooth. Stir in vanilla.
  3. Pour half of the mixture into your 9x13 pan. Scatter half of the Reese's Pieces over the fudge. Spread the remaining fudge over the top. Sprinkle the remaining candies over the top, pressing gently with the palm of your hand to make sure they adhere. Chill until firm, then cut into squares.
  4. Store in an airtight container up to 1 week.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/reeses-pieces-no-fail-fudge/

XO, Ashley

 

 

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Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake

Surprisingly easy to make and truly delicious, this Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake is the ultimate in fall dessert decadence!  Believe me, you’ll want this cake on your holiday table!

Surprisingly easy to make and truly delicious, this Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake is the ultimate in fall dessert decadence!  Believe me, you'll want this cake on your holiday table!

So, I’m probably the last blogger in the big, bad internet world to taste a gooey butter cake.  I’d heard of them, sure, but it was sort of like the poke cake – I didn’t quite get what all of the fuss was until I tried it.

Now I’m worried that there’s no going back; that I’m going to be trying a different flavor of gooey butter cake every week and eating my way to a gazillion pounds.  Maybe not a bad way to go, but I have some cute fall sweaters I’d like to be able to wear when the weather finally cools off here. ;-)

This pumpkin-pie like cake isn’t diet-friendly, and quite frankly, I don’t know why anyone would make or even waste calories on a cake that boasted to be healthy.  Go whole-hog or go home is my motto.  And anything that boasts two sticks of butter, a block of cream cheese, and three and a half cups of powdered sugar is pretty much whole-hog.  This recipe is straight from Paula Deen’s Southern Cooking Bible, and whatever your opinion of Paula, she makes a darn good cake.

Surprisingly easy to make and truly delicious, this Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake is the ultimate in fall dessert decadence!  Believe me, you'll want this cake on your holiday table!

The extra great thing about this pumpkin gooey butter cake is that it is so easy to make.  Mix up your batter {just three main ingredients} and spread it in the bottom of your pan – it will be pretty thick, so you’ll need to press it down gently with the back of a spatula or a wooden spoon to make sure it reaches the corners of the pan.

Next, make your filling: just blend together a can of pumpkin and cream cheese, add in a few eggs, vanilla, {more!} butter, powdered sugar, and my favorite blend of fall spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin pie spice.

Bake for 40 to 50 minutes; be careful not to over-bake.  It’s called “gooey cake: for a reason! :-)  Allow to cool and serve with whipped cream.

Surprisingly easy to make and truly delicious, this Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake is the ultimate in fall dessert decadence!  Believe me, you'll want this cake on your holiday table!

This is a great cake to take for a work luncheon, pot luck, or family event – anywhere that you can make sure that other people can eat some of this cake and you’re not tempted to eat the entire thing yourself.

Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake

Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake

Ingredients

    Cake:
  • 1 box (18 1/4 ounces) yellow cake mix
  • 1 large egg
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, melted
  • Filling:
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 1 box (16 ounces, or approximately 3 1/2 cups) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • whipped cream, for serving

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9x13 pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
  2. To make your cake, stir together cake mix, egg and butter with a large wooden spoon until well combined. Press the mixture into the bottom of your prepared cake pan, making sure it is smoothed into the corners.
  3. To make the filling, beat the pumpkin and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixture until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla and beat well. Add the melted butter and beat until combined. Add the pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Next, add the powdered sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, beating well in between each addition.
  4. Use a spatula to spread the filling on top of the cake base. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Do not overbake - when you stick a toothpick into the center of the cake, it should have a few wet crumbs stuck to it when you remove it.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/pumpkin-gooey-butter-cake/

XO, Ashley

 

 

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Sugar Cream Pie

Sugar Cream Pie is sweet and creamy and is accented with the rich flavors of vanilla and nutmeg.  It’s the perfect fall pie, and it is so easy to make!

Sugar Cream Pie is sweet and creamy and is accented with the rich flavors of vanilla and nutmeg.  It's the perfect fall pie, and it is so easy to make!

Sugar Cream Pie: also known as Hoosier Pie.

Also known as Saturday Night Pie.

And also known as Crazy Good Pie.

Actually, this pie is most commonly known as Hoosier Pie, because it’s the state pie of Indiana.

Less well-known is my grandfather’s name for it: Saturday Night Pie.  My mom tells me that’s what her father’s family called it when he was growing up.  My great-grandmother made a lot of fruit pies, and with the leftover crusts she’d make this Sugar Cream Pie – typically on Saturday evenings.  But because they did not have a refrigerator to store any leftovers, the entire pie had to be eaten that night.

The Crazy Good Pie moniker came from me – mainly because I intended to take only one bite {for styling purposes} and instead ended up eating nearly the whole darn thing myself.  We’ve already established I have a sugar-addiction, right? #sendhelp

Sugar Cream Pie is sweet and creamy and is accented with the rich flavors of vanilla and nutmeg.  It's the perfect fall pie, and it is so easy to make!

If you haven’t tried Sugar Cream Pie before, you need to correct that immediately.  This pie is not only creamy heaven, but it only takes a handful of ingredients.  Outside of your crust, you need only six.  That’s right, just six: sugar, flour, cream, vanilla, butter, and a bit of nutmeg.

I’ve mentioned before that the Tall Boy doesn’t care for crust (???), so I always use Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts for my pies.  They make my life soooo much simpler in the kitchen, and since no one but me ends up eating the crusts, I don’t spend my time making them from scratch.  If you prefer to make your own crust, go for it.  Me?  I’m an un-package and go kinda pie crust maker. ;-)

Sugar Cream Pie is sweet and creamy and is accented with the rich flavors of vanilla and nutmeg.  It's the perfect fall pie, and it is so easy to make!

If you need a quick and easy pie for the holidays, or just for a random Wednesday {and why not?  That’s my motto}, give this one a whirl!

Sugar Cream Pie

Sugar Cream Pie

Ingredients

  • 1 refrigerated pie crust (or make your own)
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Instructions

  1. Place a large cookie sheet on the middle oven rack and preheat oven to 425.
  2. Unroll pie crust and place in the bottom of of a 9-inch pie plate. Crimp the edges of the crust and pierce holes in the bottom of the crust with the tines of a fork.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the heavy cream, sugar, flour and vanilla until smooth. Pour the mixture into the crust, dot with butter and sprinkle the top with nutmeg. Carefully(!) transfer the pie plate to the preheated baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.
  4. After 10 minutes, reduce heat to 350 and bake for an additional 55 minutes - or until the crust is lightly golden brown. The center will still jiggle slightly - that's okay. If the edges of your crust are browning too much, cover the edges with foil.
  5. Transfer to a wire rack and allow pie to cool. May be served chilled or at room temperature. Refrigerate leftovers.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/sugar-cream-pie/

 

XO, Ashley

 

 

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Grandma’s Pumpkin Snack Cake

This Pumpkin Snack Cake is packed full of fall flavors, and topped with a easy cream cheese cinnamon-dusted frosting!

Pumpkin-Cake

Is it fall weather in your neck of the woods yet?  Here in the midwest, we’re finally getting some cooler days – while we were still in the 90’s at the beginning of the week, the high tomorrow is forecasted to be 58 degrees, with rain.  That’s perfect fall baking weather, if you ask me.  Especially when that baking involves pumpkin.

I swiped this pumpkin snack cake recipe from my grandma’s recipe box, although I think it’s a pretty standard/popular pumpkin cake recipe.  Popular because it’s super easy to make and so soft and cinnamon-spicy good.  Topped with an cream cheese frosting and dusted with just a bit more cinnamon, fall doesn’t get much better than this.

This Pumpkin Snack Cake is packed full of fall flavors, and topped with a easy cream cheese cinnamon-dusted frosting!

I always know a recipe is a winner when Doodle scarfs it down and asks for more – although who wouldn’t want more pumpkin snack cake is beyond me. ;-)

Bonus?  It’s a super easy recipe that mixes up in just a few minutes – it really doesn’t take much more work than opening a box mix.  I love homemade recipes that don’t require a lot of extra elbow grease on my part.  I don’t have a lot of extra time for baking and I’d really rather be eating cake than making it.  With this recipe, I have the best of both worlds.

This Pumpkin Snack Cake is packed full of fall flavors, and topped with a easy cream cheese cinnamon-dusted frosting!

And when you spread an easy cream cheese frosting over the top of this, well…all seems right with the world. ;-)

Tell me: what’s your favorite fall flavor?

Grandma’s Pumpkin Snack Cake

Grandma’s Pumpkin Snack Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 15-ounce can pumpkin
  • For the Frosting:
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon milk

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and spray a 9x13 pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, salt, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine eggs, sugar, oil, and pumpkin. Add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture, and beat at low speed until combined and the batter is smooth.
  4. Spread batter into pan and bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow cake to cool completely before frosting.
  5. To make the frosting, beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth. Add in the sugar and milk and mix at low speed until combined. Stir in the vanilla and mix again. Spread over cooled bars. Dust lightly with cinnamon, if desired.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/grandmas-pumpkin-snack-cake/

 

XO, Ashley

 

 

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Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars

With a thick layer of caramel sandwiched between a snickerdoodle and white chocolate, these Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars are no friend of skinny jeans.  But oh my goodness, how they’re worth it.

With a thick layer of caramel sandwiched between a snickerdoodle and white chocolate, these Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars are no friend of skinny jeans.  But oh my goodness, how they're worth it.

Earlier this summer, a new Sam’s Club opened not far from our house. I have this love/hate relationship with Sam’s – somehow I’m convinced every time I go that I need 2 jumbo containers of pretzels, 48 jalapeño poppers, 3 pounds of buffalo tenders, a giant container of hummus, and 96 taquitos {I don’t even like taquitos}.

I’m also drawn to the book and magazine aisle.  The absolute very last thing I need is another cooking magazine, but when the Fall Taste of Home Slow Cooker issue beckoned me from an end cap I was powerless to resist.

I spotted these caramel snickerdoodle bars in the back of the issue, and I was just as powerless to resist them.

With a thick layer of caramel sandwiched between a snickerdoodle and white chocolate, these Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars are no friend of skinny jeans.  But oh my goodness, how they're worth it.

You’ll want to cut these bars into very small squares – they are super sweet.  Even for me, a little goes a {very} long way.  These are the perfect treat to take to a church or work function – somewhere where you can grab a small bite and allow other people to gobble up the rest.

Or eat ‘em all yourself, I won’t judge.

With a thick layer of caramel sandwiched between a snickerdoodle and white chocolate, these Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars are no friend of skinny jeans.  But oh my goodness, how they're worth it.

If you’re not familiar with dulce de leche, you can find it in the baking aisle or in the international foods aisle of your local grocery store.

Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars

Caramel Snickerdoodle Bars

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 cans (13.4 ounce each) dulce de leche
  • 12 ounces white baking chocolate, chopped
  • 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil sprayed with cooking spray. Allow the parchment or foil to hang over the sides of the pan, about one inch.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar until they are light and fully. Add in eggs and vanilla and beat to combine.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually beat the flour mixture into the butter mixture until combined. Press mixture into the prepared pan.
  4. In a small bowl, mix sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the mixture on top of the batter. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the edges are light brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
  5. Spread both cans of dulce de leche over the cooled crust. In a medium saucepan, combine white chocolate, cream and corn syrup. Stir over medium heat until melted and smooth. Allow to cool slightly and then spread over the caramel layer. Sprinkle with the remaining cinnamon sugar mixture.
  6. Refrigerate, covered, for at least 1 hour.
  7. Use the foil or parchment paper to remove the bars from the pan. Cut into bars. Keep leftovers refrigerated.

recipe from Taste of Home

http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/caramel-snickerdoodle-bars/

 

XO, Ashley

 

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Strawberry Cheesecake Fruit Dip

This Strawberry Cheesecake Fruit Dip takes just three ingredients, and mixes up in less than five minutes.  Send it in lunchboxes, serve as an after-school snack, or just munch on it anytime, like we do!

This Strawberry Cheesecake Fruit Dip takes just three ingredients, and mixes up in less than five minutes.  Send it in lunchboxes, serve as an after-school snack, or just munch on it anytime!

We’re huge fruit eaters at my house.  And while we typically eat it plain, every now and then we like to get wild and crazy and make fruit dip.  I especially enjoy making it at the beginning of the school year, when packing lunches is still exciting and fun to Doodle.  At this point in the school year {i.e., the first full week}, he’s still really involved in choosing what he eats for lunch and likes to help out in the kitchen.

And if sending fruit dip in his lunch box gets him to eat his entire lunch, I’m all for it.

This Strawberry Cheesecake Fruit Dip takes just three ingredients, and mixes up in less than five minutes.  Send it in lunchboxes, serve as an after-school snack, or just munch on it anytime!

This Strawberry Cheesecake Fruit Dip is soooo easy to make, and is super kid-friendly {it’s adult-friendly, too, judging by the serving I ate after photographing it}.  I just mixed an 8-ounce container of strawberry cream cheese with a tablespoon of cheesecake pudding mix, and then folded in a 7-ounce jar of marshmallow cream.  Easy-peasy.

And since I just send a small dollop in Doodle’s lunch container, I figure the marshmallow cream is offset by the large handful of berries I send along with it.

Strawberry Cheesecake Fruit Dip

Ingredients

  • 1 8-ounce container strawberry cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon cheesecake pudding mix (just the dry mix)
  • 1 7-ounce container marshmallow cream

Instructions

  1. Mix together the cream cheese and pudding mix until smooth. Fold in marshmallow cream. Keep covered in the refrigerator for up to three days. Stir before serving.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/strawberry-cheesecake-fruit-dip/

What are your kiddos favorite lunch box items?  Let me know – I’m always looking for easy things to pack for my picky kiddo!

This Strawberry Cheesecake Fruit Dip takes just three ingredients, and mixes up in less than five minutes.  Send it in lunchboxes, serve as an after-school snack, or just munch on it anytime!

XO, Ashley

 

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Blueberry Coconut Popsicles

It’s summertime, and that means cooling off with icy treats!  With a blend of Greek yogurt, Silk Almond-Coconut Blend, and roasted berries, these Blueberry Coconut Popsicles are a guilt-free treat the whole family can enjoy!

It's summertime, and that means cooling off with icy treats!  With a blend of Greek yogurt, Silk Almond-Coconut Blend, and roasted berries, these Blueberry Coconut Popsicles are a guilt-free treat the whole family can enjoy!

This summer I’ve been eating a lot of popsicles – specifically, a Blueberry Greek Yogurt Popsicle.  And while they are awesome, the high-priced boxes are about to send me to the poor house.  So, I’ve been on a mission to create a copycat version that won’t break my pocketbook – or the calorie bank.

I’ve been using Silk’s new Almond-Coconut Blend all summer long.  I can add it to my oatmeal and smoothies with absolutely no guilt.  The unsweetened blend has only 35 calories per cup!  On top of that, it’s the perfect balance of almond and coconut flavors with no added sugar and it has 50 percent more calcium than dairy milk.

Score.

It's summertime, and that means cooling off with icy treats!  With a blend of Greek yogurt, Silk Almond-Coconut Blend, and roasted berries, these Blueberry Coconut Popsicles are a guilt-free treat the whole family can enjoy!

One of my favorite things about the popsicles I’ve been eating this summer is the swirled blueberries throughout.  I wanted the same effect in my popsicles, so I roasted ‘em first.  I simply dumped a pint of berries onto my baking sheet, drizzled them with honey, and put them in the oven until the berries burst and the juices started to run out.

 While my berries were cooling, I mixed together some Silk Almond-Coconut Blend, Greek Yogurt (I used a honey-vanilla blend, but plain vanilla would work just fine), and a bit more honey to taste.  Then I carefully swirled the blueberries and their juices throughout, poured the mixture into my molds, and froze them for four hours.

I used my Norpro Ice Pop Maker – but whatever you have on hand will work.

It's summertime, and that means cooling off with icy treats!  With a blend of Greek yogurt, Silk Almond-Coconut Blend, and roasted berries, these Blueberry Coconut Popsicles are a guilt-free treat the whole family can enjoy!

We devoured these Blueberry Coconut Popsicles in no time flat – and I didn’t feel guilty about allowing Doodle to eat them as a sweet treat!

It's summertime, and that means cooling off with icy treats!  With a blend of Greek yogurt, Silk Almond-Coconut Blend, and roasted berries, these Blueberry Coconut Popsicles are a guilt-free treat the whole family can enjoy!

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Blueberry Coconut Popsicles

makes 8

Blueberry Coconut Popsicles

Ingredients

  • 1 pint blueberries, rinsed and picked through
  • 1 teaspoon sugar, optional
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 cups vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup Silk Almond-Coconut Milk
  • 2 tablespoons honey, to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, gently toss berries with honey and sugar. Pour the berries onto your prepared baking sheet and roast for approximately 30 minutes, stirring once halfway through. Allow berries to cool before adding to the popsicle mixture.
  2. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups vanilla Greek yogurt, 1 cup Silk Almond-Coconut blend, and honey to taste. I like my popsicles sweet, so I added in 2 tablespoons honey. You may choose more or less based on your preference.
  3. Once your berries are cool, gently add them and their juices to the yogurt mixture. Use a large spatula to fold together.
  4. Transfer the mixture into your popsicle molds and freeze for at least 4 hours. To remove from the molds, run warm water on the outside of the molds for 15 to 20 seconds, or until the popsicles can be easily removed.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/blueberry-coconut-popsicles/

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.

XO, Ashley

 

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Soft-Baked M&M Cookies

These Soft-Baked M&M Cookies are super soft and chewy, and taste just like the ones you get from the bakery!

These Soft-Baked M&M Cookies are super soft and chewy, and taste just like the ones you get from the bakery!
Last weekend, I had the opportunity to see my favorite singer in concert: James Taylor (yep, apparently I’m 60 years old). This was my sixth JT concert ever and my second in just over three weeks. I told my good friend and concert buddy that my grandest wish was to follow JT around on his concert tour for the rest of the summer.

But since that’s not going to happen, I got the next best thing: to take Doodle to his first concert and introduce him to some live JT. Not only that, but we ended up with box seats, complete with a wait staff serving us concert-themed beverages while we jammed along to pretty much the best music evah.

You can imagine the crowd in Wichita, Kansas going a little crazy during a live version of Wichita Lineman. And even if you’re not a JT fan, Arnold McCuller’s feature on Shower the People will blow you away.

These Soft-Baked M&M Cookies are super soft and chewy, and taste just like the ones you get from the bakery!

Anyway, I made these cookies as a thank-you to my husband’s boss, who was kind enough to pass along the box seats when he found out that I might be the craziest, most die-hard JT fan alive. ;-)

You know these have to be good when my husband, a non-dessert eater, scarfs one down in less than five seconds.

These Soft-Baked M&M Cookies are super soft and chewy, and taste just like the ones you get from the bakery!

As soon as I photographed these bad boys, they were boxed up and ready to send off with the Tall Boy to work. Thank goodness his coworker like sweet treats, or I’d be in some real trouble. My co-workers usually get the shaft on my baked goodies, since I typically do most baking on the weekend, and I work from home Mondays through Wednesdays. So…if I don’t send them out the door on Monday mornings, guess what I’m doing on my lunch breaks?

Yep, sneaking cookies.

These Soft-Baked M&M Cookies are super soft and chewy, and taste just like the ones you get from the bakery!

Soft-Baked M&M Cookies

24 cookies

Soft-Baked M&M Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups M&Ms (I used mini, but any flavor or size will do)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together both sugars, the shortening , eggs, and vanilla. Add the flour, baking soda, salt and cornstarch to the butter mixture and blend well. Add in 3/4 cup to 1 cup of the M&M's.
  3. Chill dough for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheets. Press a few more M&Ms onto the tops of the cookies, if desired.
  4. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes, or until the edges are lightly browned.
http://kitchenmeetsgirl.com/soft-baked-mm-cookies/

From AllRecipes

XO, Ashley

 

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