Key Lime Pie Martini


While perusing recipes over the weekend, I somehow stumbled upon this insanely delicious concoction. I found there are many variations, some using pineapple juice, sweet and sour mix, coconut rum, and so on. I took two recipes I found, swapped out a couple of ingredients and thought it tasted exactly like the dessert version. A slice of heaven in a glass.

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp. Licor 43
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla vodka
  • 2 tbsp. Key Lime juice (or 2 tbsp. fresh lime juice)
  • 2 tbsp. heavy whipping cream

Garnish

  • Lime wedge
  • 1/2 tsp. Graham cracker crumbs (can mix with sugar for a sweeter taste)

Directions

  1. Chill martini glass.
  2. Fill a shaker with ice and combine Licor 43, vanilla vodka and lime juice.
  3. Shake until shaker is icy cold. 
  4. Open shaker, add the heavy cream, and shake again. 
  5. Rub chilled martini glass rim with lime wedge, dip into graham crackers on a place, and strain drink into martini glass.
  6. Garnish with a lime slice (optional). 
  7. Enjoy!

Cake Batter Truffles


Cake Batter Truffles

A few months ago, I made some amazing Oreo truffles and wanted to do something similar for the potluck we had at work yesterday to celebrate the 4th. I saw these a while back and saved the recipe from Six Sisters’ Stuff, and followed it exactly as written, with the exception of using only red, white & blue sprinkles and adding American flag toothpicks on top to make these patriotic for the occasion. I’m not a huge cake batter fanatic (although I do like it a lot), but apparently, there are tons of people out there who are! I thought they were great, and received rave reviews, so have to say they were a success 🙂 Not to mention, I think they’re really cute!

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • 1 cup yellow cake mix
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 4 tbsp. milk (I used skim)
  • 2 tbsp. sprinkles

Truffle Coating

  • 16 oz. (8 squares) almond bark (or white candy melts)
  • 4 tbsp. yellow cake mix
  • Sprinkles

Almond Bark

Rolled up & ready to cool in fridge
Rolled up & ready to cool in fridge

Directions

  1. Beat together butter and sugar using an electric mixer until combined.
  2. Add cake mix, flour, salt, and vanilla and mix thoroughly.
  3. Add 4 tbsp. of milk to make a dough consistency.
  4. Mix in sprinkles by hand.
  5. Roll dough into one inch balls and place on a parchment or wax paper lined cookie sheet.
  6. Chill balls in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to firm up.
  7. While dough balls are chilling, melt almond bark in the microwave in 30 second intervals until melted. Stir between intervals. (I used my chocolate warmer)
  8. Once melted, quickly stir in cake mix until incorporated completely.
  9. Using a fork, dip truffles into almond bark and shake of excess bark by tapping the bottom of the fork on the side of your bowl.
  10. Place truffles back on the cookie sheet and top with sprinkles. Repeat with remaining balls until finished.
  11. Chill cake batter truffles in the refrigerator until serving. Makes around 24-30 truffles.

Cake Batter Truffles

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Oreo Truffles


Oreo Truffles

My Mom told me about these little gems recently, and how incredibly scrumptious they were, so it goes without saying… I just had to try them out. I did last night and she was NOT kidding! Today, I brought them into work and they went over like gangbusters! In addition, everyone was shocked that they’re only made up of three ingredients and the inside is totally creamy! They do take a little bit of work to put together, but I promise you, it is well worth the effort!

I decided to divide the recipe in half and make these smaller than one inch instructed on Kraft’s site (although they look larger in the picture), and thought they were the perfect size.

Ingredients

  • 36 Oreo cookies, finely crushed
  • 1 (8 oz.) package of Philly cream cheese, softened
  • 4 packages (4 oz.) Bakers semi-sweet chocolate, melted

Peanut butter oreos in food processor
Peanut butter oreos in food processor

Oreo crumbs
Oreo crumbs

Directions

  1. Break Oreos into small pieces, place into food processor (or blender) and grind to fine crumbs.
  2. Reserve 1/4 cup of the crumbs.
  3. Combine cream cheese & remaining crumbs in a bowl until well blended.
  4. Shape into approximately 48 (1 inch) balls.
  5. Put in freezer for 15 minutes to harden.
  6. Melt chocolate in microwave* or in a chocolate warmer (my favorite).
  7. Dip the oreo-cream cheese balls into chocolate, using one or two forks, or a toothpick, until covered, and place on wax or parchment paper-covered rimmed baking sheet.
  8. Sprinkle immediately with reserved crumbs and refrigerate for 1 hour or until firm.

* To melt chocolate: Place chocolate in microwavable bowl. Microwave on HIGH 2-1/2 min. or until chocolate is completely melted, stirring every 30 sec.

Store in airtight container in fridge.

A Different Batch Using Milk Chocolate & Almond Bark
A different batch made with milk chocolate & almond bark

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Reese’s Brownies


CC Cookie PB Brownie

What do you get when you combine chocolate chip cookie dough, Reese’s peanut butter cups and brownie mix??? I call it a little slice of heaven! If you’re a fan of these three things as much as I am, then you will fall in love with this amazing concoction. For real. And when I  tell you they’re super easy to make, I kid you not.

Ingredients
Ingredients

  • 1 package of break-apart cookie dough
  • 24 regular or snack size Reese’s peanut butter cups
  • 1 box of brownie mix

Assembly

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Flatten a square of the chocolate chip cookie dough into the wells of a muffin tin (or in cupcake liners).
  3. Place a Reese’s, upside down, on top of the cookie dough.
  4. Prepare brownie batter as directed on the box, and spoon over Reese’s-cookie dough, 3/4 full.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Let cool on wire rack.
  7. Enjoy the deliciousness!

Fresh out of the oven

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Mini Reese’s Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies


I decided to do a little experimenting in the kitchen yesterday with two of my favorite treats…  Reese’s peanut butter cups and chocolate chip cookies. The results were mind-blowing!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, white sugar, brown sugar and vanilla until smooth with electric mixer on medium speed or with spoon until light and fluffy.
  3. Beat in the eggs one at a time.
  4. Stir in flour, baking soda, salt and chocolate chips.
  5. Measure out about a tablespoon of cookie dough. Roll into a ball and then flatten in the palm of your hands.
  6. Place a mini Reese’s peanut butter cup in the centers of the flattened dough balls and form dough back into a ball around the Reese’s.
  7. Place Reese’s stuffed dough balls into the freezer for 10-15 minutes before baking.
  8. Place dough balls 2 inches apart on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  9. Bake 11 to 13 minutes or until light brown (centers will be soft).
  10. Cool 2 minutes; remove from cookie sheet to cooling rack.

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Mini-Cheesecakes


So what can I possibly say about this decadent dessert? I think the name itself speaks volumes. First of all, I love chocolate chips cookies. I mean, really, really love them. And then there’s cookie dough. Well, I know I’m not the only one who’s purchased a package of dough with the intention of making chocolate chips cookie, only to eat spoonful after spoonful… even though it’s considered “risky” because of the raw eggs. The good news about this recipe is that you don’t have to worry about salmonella as the cookie dough doesn’t contain any eggs!! Woo hoo! Okay, next up is cheesecake. Simply put, I can’t get enough of it! And the combination of cookie dough and cheesecake together, is like a little slice of heaven! I highly recommend you try this recipe if you adore all of the above as much as I do!

Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter

Cheesecake

  • 8 oz. Philadelphia cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

Cookie Dough

  • 5 tbsp. butter
  • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2/3 cup chocolate chips

Directions: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F. Spray mini-cheesecake pan with cooking spray (you can also use a muffin pan with cupcake liners). Set aside.
  2. Mix the melted butter, sugar and graham cracker crumbs until thoroughly combined. Press the mixture into the bottom and going up the sides of the prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 6 minutes. Remove pan to a cooling rack. Leave your oven on while you prepare the dough.
  3. While the crust is cooling, prepare the chocolate chip cookie dough. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt and vanilla until smooth and thoroughly combined, about 1 minute. Stir in the flour a little bit at a time, on low-speed, and mix until just incorporated. Add the chocolate chips and blend in with a spoon. Set aside.
  4. In another bowl, using a mixer, cream together the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Mix in the egg and vanilla on low-speed just until incorporated. Pour the cheesecake batter into the prepared crust.
  5. Using your hand, form round teaspoon-sized clumps, and distribute the cookie dough onto the top of the cheesecake batter.
  6. Bake for about 25 minutes, until the top (cookie dough) feels dry. Since cooking times vary with different ovens, I’d recommend checking them at 20 minutes.
  7. Move pan to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely.
  8. Remove mini-cheesecakes by pushing up on the bottom of pan. *
  9. Chill in refrigerator overnight or for at least a couple of hours.

Note: You may think that baking the cookie dough will produce an actual cookie, but since it doesn’t contain eggs, it won’t truly “mature” into a real cookie, and ends up tasting like cookie dough 🙂

* If you’re not familiar with mini-cheesecake pans, they’re basically like muffin pans except the cups are thinner and taller, and there are holes in the bottom. They come with small, round discs which lay in the bottom, on top of the circular holes, so you can push up the bottom with your finger or the end of a wooden spoon to get a nice looking mini-cheesecake. I recently bought one of these pans from Amazon made my Chicago Metallics that cost about $13.

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Oh-So-Yummy Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake


You wouldn’t know it by the weather here in Southern California right now, but it IS officially fall, and Halloween and Thanksgiving are right around the corner. And, as much as I adore summer, I have to admit, I’m a big fan of both holidays, especially turkey day because of all of the incredible food! Last year, I was invited to someone’s house for the holiday, and was in charge of bringing a couple of dishes – one being dessert. Since I’m a huge cheesecake lover, I decided to go with a pumpkin cheesecake, and I must tell you, it received rave reviews! That same cheesecake actually won a bake-off contest at work! Need I say more? Rest assured, this recipe will not disappoint, and people will be asking you for it!

Topped with low-fat whipped cream, candied pecan pieces and drizzled caramel.

Ingredients

  • 38 Nabisco Ginger Snaps, finely crushed (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped pecans (I like to use candied pecans)
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 4 pkg. (8 oz. each) Philadelphia cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 eggs

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 325.
  2. Mix crumbs, nuts and butter; press onto bottom and 1 inch up side of 9-inch springform pan.
  3. Beat cream cheese and sugar in large bowl with mixer until well blended.
  4. Add pumpkin, spice and vanilla; mix well.
  5. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing on low-speed after each just until blended.
  6. Pour into crust.
  7. Bake 1 hour 20 min. to 1 hour 30 min., or until center is almost set. Loosen cake from rim of pan; cool before removing rim.
  8. Refrigerate 4 hours.
Recipe adapted from Kraft.

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Raspberry Poke Cake


This is an easy and absolutely delicious cake to make for the holidays. The jello/gelatin makes it incredibly moist and flavorful! You can switch out the raspberry mix with strawberry or whatever flavor suits your fancy.

Original recipe courtesy of Betty Crocker

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients

  • 1 box Betty Crocker SuperMoist Vanilla cake mix (or white cake mix)
  • Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on cake mix box
  • 1 box (4-serving size) raspberry-flavored gelatin
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 container Betty Crocker cream cheese frosting (or thawed whipped cream topping)
  • Raspberries and/or blueberries (optional)

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 350F (or 325F for dark or nonstick pan).
  2. Spray bottom of pan with cooking spray; make and cool cake as directed on box for 13×9-inch pan
  3. Pierce cooled cake all over, but not all the way to the bottom, with fork (or use a skewer or handle of a wooden spoon).
  4. In a small bowl, stir gelatin and boiling water until smooth & dissolved; add in cold water.
  5. Pour liquid over cake carefully (I highly recommend using a turkey baster or spout measuring cup).
  6. Refrigerate 2-3 hours.
  7. Frost & garnish (if desired).
  8. Store covered in refrigerator.

Note: to make this even more festive for the 4th of July, Labor Day and/or Memorial Day, use berries to design an American flag on top of frosting RIGHT before serving (putting the raspberries or strawberries on way beforehand will result in the juice bleeding with the frosting).

Chocolate Scotcheroos


A scrumptious dessert with Rice Krispies, chocolate, peanut butter and butterscotch.

Before measuring the corn syrup, coat your measuring cup with cooking spray — the syrup will pour easily out of the cup.  

Recipe courtesy of Kellogg’s.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 6 cups Rice Krispies (or Cocoa Rice Krispies)
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate morsels
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips (or peanut butter chips)

Directions

  1. Place corn syrup and sugar in 3-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until sugar dissolves and mixture begins to boil.
  2. Remove from heat. Stir in peanut butter and mix well.
  3. Add Rice Krispies cereal. Stir until well-coated.
  4. Press mixture into 13x9x2-inch pan coated with cooking spray. Set aside.
  5. Melt chocolate and butterscotch chips in 1-quart saucepan over low-heat, stirring constantly.
  6. Spread evenly over cereal mixture. Let stand until firm.
  7. Cut into 2×1 inch bars when cool.

S’mores Brownies


I think the name says it all! Yum! While this recipe can be made entirely by scratch, I am going to give you the shorter/quicker/easier version so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time outdoors enjoying summer & BBQ season.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups crushed graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 box Betty Crocker Original Supreme brownie mix (w/chocolate syrup pouch)
  • Water, vegetable oil and eggs, needed for brownie mix
  • 3 cups miniature marshmallows

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. For the crust, put graham crackers in a large Ziploc bag & crush them with a rolling-pin or skillet until they’re fine crumbs. You can also simplify this by purchasing a box of graham cracker crumbs.
  3. In a bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter. Press the mixture into the bottom of a lightly greased, 8×8 inch baking dish.
  4. Bake the crust until slightly darkened & firm to touch, approx. 8-10 minutes.
  5. Remove crust from the oven & reduce temperature to 325F.
  6. Make the brownies according to box directions.
  7. Pour brownie batter over the graham cracker crust & bake 35-40 minutes, making sure not to overbake. Note: a toothpick stuck into the brownie will not some out clean when done cooking. You want to have a center that’s texture is similar to fudge.
  8. Remove the brownies from the oven & allow to cool before topping with marshmallows. Note: this is a good time to cut the brownies, as it can get a bit messy with the melted marshmallows.
  9. Set oven to broil & carefully position rack about 6 inches from the broiler.
  10. Top brownies with marshmallows (use more if you like) and heat 20-30 seconds until marshmallows are golden brown. Watch very carefully as it can go quick & you want to avoid burning.