Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Bites


Here’s another ‘quick bites of energy’ recipe. I loved having these around in the early days of Callan being here. They were healthy enough to eat at any time but they also had a bit of chocolate that worked for my sweet-tooth cravings.

We’ve been cooking with chickpeas a lot lately and I’m finding new ways to incorporate them into desserts. While I wouldn’t say these truly taste like peanut butter cookie dough, they’re delicious.


  • 1 ¼ C canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained (almost an entire can)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ C + 2 Tbls peanut butter
  • ¼ C honey
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ C chocolate chips


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a food processor, combine all the ingredients except for the chocolate chips. You may have to stop the food processor and scrape the sides a few times to make sure everything is incorporated.
  3. Add the chocolate chips and pulse a few times.
  4. With wet hands, form into 1 1/2″ balls.
  5. Place onto a Silpat or a piece of parchment paper.
  6. Press down on cookies with fork a criss-cross pattern.
  7. Bake for 10 min.

Approximately 20 cookies.

Very, very slightly adapted from Texanerin. For my first grain-free attempt, I figured it best not to mess with the recipe. And like she says, don’t skip the chocolate!


Lemon Blueberry Bundt Cake with Lemon Glaze


When guests are coming over, I pull out all the stops…including a doctored up cake mix 🙂 Ok, really, I’d just been running errands all day and hadn’t started a dessert when they were due to arrive any minute.

I had intended on coming up with a cool lemon and blueberry dessert that didn’t require me turning on the oven. Maybe I should have thought of that earlier in the day. Oops!

It ended up being a perfect summer treat — light and refreshing cake that topped off an evening of blue crab picking. Yummy!




  • 1 box lemon cake mix
  • ½ C freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 C water
  • ⅓ C vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 ½ C blueberries
  • zest of 2 lemons, finely chopped


  • 1 C powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbls freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • water, as needed



  1. Preheat oven according to cake mix directions.
  2. Grease & flour Bundt pan.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine lemon cake mix, ½ C lemon juice, water, oil and eggs.
  4. Beat mixture on low speed for 30 seconds.
  5. Increase speed to medium and beat batter for 2 min.
  6. Gently fold in lemon zest and blueberries.
  7. Pour cake batter into prepared pan and bake according to package directions or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Cool cake completely in pan set on wire rack.
  9. When cake is cool, place serving plate over the top of Bundt pan and flip cake onto plate.


  1. In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice and powdered sugar until smooth.
  2. Whisk in water as needed.
  3. Drizzle glaze over cake.

12 slices

Adapted from A Bloggable Life.

Baked Chocolate Doughnuts with Nutella Glaze


Last Friday was National Doughnut Day and I have a mini doughnut maker sitting in the cabinet that hasn’t been touched. It was time to try it out. Honestly, I had very low expectations for this $10 on clearance impulse buy. I bought the Bella Cucina Donut Maker.

To my surprise, it works very well and is incredibly easy to use. Seriously.

Plug it in and let it warm up. Add the batter. Close it. Let it cook for about 2-3 min. Eat.

1 C flour
2 Tbls cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
⅔ C sugar
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp salt
2 Tbls cold butter, cut into small pieces
¼ C coconut milk (buttermilk or regular milk can be substituted)
¼ C sour cream
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg

¼ C Nutella
½ C powdered sugar
2 tsp coconut milk (buttermilk or regular milk can be substituted)


  1. Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and baking soda.
  2. Whisk in sugar, nutmeg and salt.
  3. Add butter and cut in with pastry cutter, fingers or two knives until mixture is crumbly.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine coconut milk, sour cream, vanilla and egg.
  5. Fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients, until just combined.
  6. Cook according to electric doughnut maker instructions. (Mine took only about 2-3 min.)
  7. Allow doughnuts to cool slightly.
  8. Warm Nutella for about 20 seconds in microwave.
  9. Whisk in coconut milk.
  10. Whisk in powdered sugar until desired consistency.
  11. Dip doughnuts in glaze and let cool (or not).

This recipe was made in an electric doughnut maker though the recipe should work well for any baked doughnut.

Adapted from Hooiser Homemade

White Chocolate Vanilla Bean Cake


I love cooking for my family. They let me experiment and they eat pretty much anything. My parents came over a few weeks ago and I made all new recipes except for the steak. Wouldn’t you know it, that’s the item I messed up!

After a huge meal, I wanted something that wasn’t too filling yet still felt like a substantial dessert. I had torn out this recipe years ago (Food & Wine 2002 – yes, I know…old.) and it seemed like it would top off the meal well. To complement the dessert, I thought it would need something else. I roasted some grapes, made whipped cream, and even pulled out some melted dark chocolate. It didn’t need any of these!

This recipe is especially good for when you’re having guests because it can be made in advance. Enjoy!


7 oz. white chocolate, chopped
1 oz. white chocolate, for shaving
7 Tbls unsalted butter
2 vanilla beans, split, seeds scraped
5 large eggs, separated
⅓ C bread flour, sifted
pinch of cream of tartar
⅓ C sugar

1. Butter a 9” springform pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper and butter the paper.
2. In a large bowl set over a pot of barely simmering water, stir the chopped white chocolate with the butter until almost melted.
3. Remove the bowl from the heat, add the vanilla seeds and stir until smooth.
4. Stir in the eggs.
5. Sift the bread flour over the batter and stir.
6. In a large bowl, beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar to soft peaks.
7.  Gradually add the sugar and beat until the whites are stiff and glossy.
8. Beat ¼ of the egg whites into the batter, then fold in the remaining whites until no streaks remain.
9. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.
10. Preheat the oven to 375. Bake the cake in the middle of the oven for about 30 min, until puffed and golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
11. Let the cake cool completely in the pan.
12. Run a thin knife around the edge of the cake, then remove the side of the pan.
13. Slide the cake onto a plate. Shave white chocolate onto top of cake.

From December 2002 Food & Wine.

Serves 8

The baked cake can be refrigerated for up to 2 days. Serve at room temperature for best flavor.

Mexican Chocolate Fudge-Pecan Cake


Here’s your new chocolate cake recipe. Yeah, it’s that good. It’s a rich, dark chocolate cake with a touch of cinnamon and sea salt and a beautiful, shiny chocolate glaze. It reminds me of a fancy Texas Sheet Cake.

I brought this cake to a family dinner on Sunday. Mom made a Hershey Bar Marshmallow Pie (I’ll have to get the recipe and post it. Yum!). Why choose one when you can have both? All of us had a slice of each…the best way to top off a heavy dinner, right?

Thanks Jen for hosting this week. You picked a good one. Check out the other participants over at Project Pastry Queen.


1 cup unsalted butter
½ cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
¾ cup water
2 C sugar
2 eggs
1 C buttermilk (or put 1 tsp lemon juice in 1 cup container then fill remainder with milk)
2 Tbls vanilla extract
2 C all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp sea salt

1 C pecans (optional)
½ C unsalted butter
¼ C whole milk
½ C high-quality cocoa powder
2  C sifted powdered sugar
1 Tbls vanilla extract
¼ tsp sea salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9″ tube pan or 10-12 C Bundt pan with non-stick spray or use Baker’s Joy. For cupcakes, line standard-size muffin pans with muffin wrappers and spray with non-stick spray.
  2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the cocoa and whisk until smooth.  Add the water and whisk until smooth. Be careful not to boil the mixture. Remove the saucepan from the heat.
  3. Add the sugar, eggs, buttermilk and vanilla to the warm cocoa mixture. Whisk until smooth.
  4. Add the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Whisk until dry ingredients are completely incorporated.
  5. Pour the batter into the pan. If using muffin pans, fill each cup 2/3 full.
  6. Bake for 40-45 min; the cake is done when it has pulled away slightly form the sides of the pan and feels firm to the touch. For cupcakes, check for doneness after about 20 min.
  7. Let the cake cool in the pan for about 20 min. cupcakes need only a total of 10 min cooling time.
  8. Meanwhile, make the glaze. Arrange the pecans on a baking sheet in a single layer and toast them in the 350 degree oven for 7-9 minutes, until golden brown and aromatic. Chop the pecans.
  9. Melt the butter over low heat in a medium saucepan. Add the milk, cocoas, and powdered sugar and whisk until glossy. Remove the saucepan from the heat and whisk in the vanilla, salt, and pecans.
  10. Loosen the cake with a knife or spatula and overturn it onto a seving plate. Spoon the glaze over the cooled cake, covering it thoroughly. For cupcakes, remove them from the pan, and peel off the paper liners. Invert each cupcake onto a small serving plate and cover with glaze.


Adapted (very slightly) from Rebecca Rather’s The Pastry Queen’s Mexican Chocolate-Fudge Cake.

Cake will keep up to 3 days, covered, at room temperature. Unglazed and well wrapped, it will keep frozen up to 3 weeks. When frozen, bring the cake to room temperature and glaze just before serving.

One Bowl Scratch Brownies


The quickest, most satisfying chocolate fix.

They’re ooey-gooey, chocolaty goodness.

This is my go-to brownie recipe. It’s fast, easy, and versatile. Even better, there’s only one pot and a whisk to clean. Well, except for the pan you cook them in. My guess is you’ll probably be washing it a few minutes after they come out of the oven. That’s how fast they’ll be eaten.



1/3 C (5 1/3 Tbsp) butter
¾ C sugar
2 Tbsp water
12 oz (1 bag) chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
¾ C flour
¾ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 325.
  2. Melt butter, sugar, and water in medium saucepan until just boiling.
  3. Immediately remove from stove and stir in ¾ of the chocolate chips and vanilla.
  4. Beat in eggs one at a time.
  5. Whisk in flour and baking powder.
  6. Stir in remaining chocolate chips (I used peanut butter chips).
  7. Pour batter into greased 8”x8” pan.
  8. Bake at 325 for 20 min.
You can replace the remaining chocolate chips with anything such as peanut butter, white chocolate, butterscotch, etc.
I take them out right at 20 min because I like them a bit undone in the middle, but you may want to cook them for a few more minutes.

Butterfinger Clone

butterfinger-cloneOh my. These are delicious. Not quite the same as a real Butterfinger but so close.

Three ingredients and easy to make.

1 lb candy corn
16 oz peanut butter
16 oz dark chocolate candy coating

1. Line an 8”x8” pan with parchment or wax paper.
2. Melt candy corn in microwave in 30 second intervals until melted. Stir after each interval.
3. Stir in peanut butter.
4. Spread mixture into pan and cool completely. Trim edges if needed. Cut into 15 rectangles (3 rows of 5).
5. Melt chocolate according to package instructions.
6. Using fork, dip each rectangle into chocolate and completely cover. Place on waxed paper until set.

Makes 15 mini bars. Store in airtight container at room temperature.

Slightly adapted from Plain Chicken.