Archives for category: dessert

Our son brought home a “Top Secret” cookbook from his school library and asked to make copycat Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. I’m not a huge fan of baking or making candy (I love the improvisation and un-preciseness of cooking), but since he was so excited about a recipe I said sure why not. Plus… chocolate!!! Ha. Here’s how they turned out:

easy homemade peanut butter cups recipe


  • 8 oz. semi-sweet baking chocolate
  • 1 1/3 c. milk chocolate chips
  • 2 T. vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 c. creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 c. + 2 Tbs. powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbs. softened butter


STEP 1: Line 10 regular-sized muffin cups with paper liners. Set aside

STEP 2: In a microwave-safe bowl, heat 4 oz. baking chocolate in the microwave at 30-second intervals until it starts to melt. Add 2/3 c. chocolate chips and head an additional 30 seconds or until melted. Add 1 Tbs. shortening and stir until everything has combined and is melted. Pour into liners. Place muffin tin in freezer for 15-20 minutes, or until firm.

STEP 3: In a mixing bowl, with an electric mixer, beat peanut butter, butter, and powdered sugar on low until blended. Spoon mixture evenly among the cups of chocolate. Place back in freezer for 15-20 minutes, or until firm.

STEP 4: Repeat step 2 with remaining baking chocolate, chocolate chips, and shortening. Pour chocolate evenly among peanut butter to top. Freeze for 15-20 more minutes or until set.

recipe adapted from Copycat Candy Bars Cookbook


Lemon Bundt Cake with Simple Lemon Syrup Recipe

Lemon Bundt Cake with Simple Lemon Syrup - Delicious Recipe

  • 1 c. unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 3 c. all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
  • 2 Tbs. finely grated lemon zest
  • juice from 2 lemons (1/3 cup fresh juice)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 1/2 c. sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 c. sour cream
  • Lemon Syrup: 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice + 1/2 cup sugar (Combine ingredients in a small saucepan. Whisk over medium heat until sugar dissolves completely).
  • Optional: confectioner’s sugar for garnish


Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a Bundt pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, lemon zest, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar on med-high speed until light and fluffy, 4-5 mins. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each is added; mix in lemon juice.

With mixer on low, alternately add flour mixture and sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix just until incorporated (do not overmix).

Spoon batter into buttered/floured pan and smooth with a rubber spatula. Firmly tap pan on a work surface to level batter.

Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean; 55-60 min (if cake browns too quickly, tent loosely with aluminum foil). Let cake cool in pan 30 minutes, then place on cooling rack.

Before serving, poke holes all over the cooled cake, and brush with lemon syrup. If the cake does not absorb all the syrup at once, allow to sit 15-20 mins before adding any remaining syrup.

To store, wrap in plastic and keep at room temp up to 3 days. Good luck not eating the whole thing by then, ha!

recipe adapted from

12 cup Bundt Pan

Lemon Bundt Cake with Simple Lemon Syrup

Did you know you can freeze apple crisp? I tried it and it works!

I made up some batches and stored ’em in the freezer – we baked one recently and it was yum-to-the-E. The kids loved helping peel the apples with our slicer/corer/peeler tool.

Apple Crisp Recipe - Includes freezer instructions - make a bunch during apple season and freeze extras - enjoy all winter long

Did you know you can freeze Apple Crisp - so easy and delicious - make a bunch in the fall and enjoy all winter

Here’s What You Do:

1. Prepare Apple Crisp Recipe according to instructions (I used this one from, except do not bake. I split mine up into little square foil pans from the dollar store, so we would have smaller batches.

2. Wrap unbaked crisps in plastic wrap then a layer of foil, and label.

3. Freeze.

4. To prepare, thaw and bake according to the directions in your recipe.

apple peeler

Flourless Chocolate Torte - springform cake pan recipe

Happy Valentine’s Day! Or as I like to call it, almost my birthday, haha. Here’s a flourless chocolate torte I adapted from Epicurious; a decadent concoction called La Bete Noire (“The Black Beast”). Instead of topping the torte with a ganache I used whipping cream and cocoa powder.

This can be made a couple of days ahead of time; just keep it covered in the fridge.

Flourless Chocolate Torte Recipe - made in a springform cake pan


  • 1 c. water
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 9 Tbs (1 stick + 1 Tbs) unsalted butter, diced
  • 18 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 c. whipping cream, whipped
  • 1/2 c. confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbs unsweetened cocoa
  • 10-in diameter springform pan
  • parchment paper
  • heavy-duty foil
  • large roasting pan

For cake:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter springform pan. Line bottom of pan with a circle of parchment paper; butter parchment.

Wrap 3 layers of heavy-duty foil around outside of pan, bringing foil to top of rim.

In a small sauce pan, combine 1 c. water and 3/4 c. sugar. Bring to boil over med heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Simmer 5 mins then remove from heat.

In a large saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Add chocolate and whisk until smooth. Whisk sugar syrup into chocolate; cool slightly. Add eggs to chocolate mixture and whisk until well blended.

Pour batter into prepared pan. Place cake pan in roasting pan then add hot water until water comdes halfway up sides of cake pan.

Bake cake 50 minutes, or until firm (center should no longer move when pan is gently shaken).

Remove from water bath; transfer to rack. Cool completely in pan.

For frosting:

Beat cream until slightly thickened. Gradually add sugar, vanilla and cocoa. Beat until stiff peaks form. Spread on top of cake.

Refrigerate cake in pan until serving. Run knife around pan sides to loosen cake then release sides. Slice and serve.

No Flour Chocolate Torte Recipe - baked in a springform cake pan

Skinny Mini Confetti Cupcakes

Using just 2 ingredients, you can enjoy a sweet mini-cupcake snack, even when you’re eating light! Each cupcake has just 40 calories and less than 1 gram of fat.

Skinny Mini Confetti Cupcakes - just diet soda and cake mix from a box! Only 40 calories each and less than 1 gram of fat.

Skinny Mini Confetti Cupcakes

  • Servings: 60 mini cupcakes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


  • 1 Box Confetti Cake Mix
  • 12 oz. Sprite Zero (or any diet lemon-lime soda)
  • optional: icing, frosting, or Cool Whip


In a mixing bowl, combine cake mix and Sprite Zero, stirring to combine.

Pour batter into lined (or greased) mini cupcake pans.

Bake at 350°F for 15 mins, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

Let cool (optional: add frosting, icing, or Cool Whip) and serve.

Two Ingredient Cupcakes - just cake mix and diet soda - makes 60 cupcakes and they are only 40 calories each!

Estimated Nutrition Information for 1 unfrosted cupcake:

  • 42 calories
  • 0.8 g fat
  • 8.4 g carbs
  • 0.2 g fiber

Skinny Mini Confetti Cupcakes - just diet soda and cake mix from a box! Only 40 calories per cupcake.

mini cupcake pan

mini cupcake liners

Here are some tiny apple pies I made with won ton wrappers! I just mixed up some cinnamon, sugar, and butter, wrapped it in won ton wrappers, and baked these bite-size pieces for a few minutes. Verdict: super easy and super delicious.

Mini Apple Pies - perfectly baked in won ton wrappers. Just a few simple ingredients but tons of awesome fall flavor!



  • 2 apples, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Tbs. butter, melted
  • cinnamon (to taste)
  • sugar (to taste)
  • 24 won ton wrappers


  • Preheat oven to 400F.
  • Mix the apples and butter in a bowl. Add cinnamon and sugar to taste.
  • Place won ton wrappers on a foil-lined baking sheet sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, then add apples as pictured and fold into triangles.
  • Bake for 10 minutes, or until slightly browned.

Mini Apple Pies - perfectly baked in won ton wrappers. Delicious fall flavor!

Mini Apple Pies - perfectly baked in won ton wrappers. So easy and so delicious.

apple peeler

Over the summer the kids and I tried a super-easy recipe for chocolate-covered blueberries. It has just two ingredients: chocolate (duh) and blueberries (double duh) LOL. They turned out really well and were fun to make and a great sweet snack.

2-Ingredient Chocolate Covered Blueberries


  • 1 bag of milk chocolate chips
  • 1-2 pints of blueberries
  • silicone mold


  • Pour chocolate chips in a microwaveable bowl and microwave until melted.
  • Spoon melted chocolate into the mold.
  • Drop in a few blueberries.
  • Freeze silicone mold then pop each piece out.
  • Keep refrigerated (we put ours in cupcake liners and Ziplock bags).

milk chocolate chips


silicone mold for chocolate covered blueberries

2-ingredient chocolate covered blueberries

The hubby’s birthday fell on the weekend of July 4 this year, so I went all out (calorie- and sugar- wise) on an ice cream cake to celebrate his day of turning the big 3-5.

Inspired by a recipe from I ended up with this crazy, cold, candy-filled, fattening, sugar-coma-inducing concoction.

Calorie count: Infinite (lol). Deliciousness factor: Off the charts.

candy shop ice cream cake


  • 2 flavors of ice cream (1 quart each). I used chocolate chip cookie dough, and chocolate.
  • 1/4 c. milk
  • Kit Kat candy bars (I used approximately 40)
  • 1 tub Cool Whip, thawed enough to spread
  • 1 package Oreo cookies
  • 1/2 c. M&M candies
  • parchment paper
  • 9-in springform pan


  • Remove both ice creams from the freezer and let melt so they are soft enough to stir.
  • While waiting on ice cream, combine 24 Oreo cookies and milk in a food processor, which will be the bottom layer for the crust.
  • Coat springform pan with non-stick spray, then place Kit Kat bars upright all around the side of the pan. Place bars as close as possible to each other, with “Kit Kat” facing outward.
  • Cut a piece of parchment paper into the same size circle as the size of the bottom of the pan. Line the bottom of the pan with the paper then press the Oreo crust evenly on top of it.
  • Place in the freezer for 10 minutes.
  • Spread one kind of ice cream evenly over the Oreo crust, then put back in the freezer for 10 minutes.
  • Spread the second ice cream over the crust, and place in freezer for 10 minutes.
  • Top with Cool Whip as frosting, then sprinkle M&Ms on top. I added an Oreo, and you could also put Oreo crumbles on top too.
  • Return cake to freezer for 8-10 hours, or overnight, to set.
  • Remove from freezer 10 minutes prior to serving. Remove the springform ring, then slice cake, and serve.

line spring form pan with Kit Kat

blend Oreos and milk in food processor

Oreos + Milk = Crust

line bottom of pan with parchment paper

Oreo crust

3 layers on top of crust: ice cream, more ice cream, then Cool Whip

1st layer of ice cream

2nd layer of ice cream

frost with CoolWhip and top with candy

remove spring form ring before slicing

candy shop ice cream cake

candy shop ice cream cake

July 2014  – Here we are again, another birthday for the hubs! Last year’s ice cream cake was such a hit I made one again. Since we celebrated on the 4th of July, I used just red and blue M&Ms on top for a patriotic theme…

Candy Shop Ice Cream Cake: crust of Oreos, Kit Kat bars all around, 2 kinds of ice cream, top with Cool Whip and candies. Use different colors of MandMs for different themes!

Kool Aid Taffy

Our Kool-Aid Taffy Before it Turned into a Rock

I saw this recipe on Pinterest and thought the kids would have fun making taffy.

We had fun trying it out, though it took FOR.EVE.R and I must’ve cooked it too long or something because it turned so hard we couldn’t pull it (I used a candy thermomemter and took it right off the heat when it hit 250F, so who knows). Later when I accidentally dropped some on the floor it broke into pieces, ha!

Also, you need tons of time for this recipe, which usually doesn’t fly with with little ones. 🙂 It reminded me of this cartoon:

kid humor

So here’s the recipe.


  • 2 1/2 c. sugar
  • 3 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 1 c. light corn syrup
  • 1 1/3 c. room temp water
  • 2 Tbs. butter, plus more for buttering hands
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 pkg Kool-Aid

Kool Aid Taffy


1. Butter a baking sheet & its sides.

2. In a saucepan, stir the sugar and cornstarch together. Add corn syrup, water, butter and salt and stir until the butter melts.

3. Bring to a boil over medium heat and stop stirring. Cook mixture until candy thermometer reads 250 degrees. Once it approaches 250 degrees watch closely because it cooks quickly at the end.

4. Immediately remove from heat. (If you cook it too long it will turn out very hard.) Carefully stir in vanilla and Kool-Aid Stir well.

5. Pour mixture onto buttered baking pan. Allow to cool enough to handle, about 15 minutes.

6. Butter hands and pull until it becomes opaque and lighter in color, usually about 15 mins of pulling. You will need to butter your hands a few times. * if your taffy turns out like ours did, you can just skip the next steps and throw the hard glob in the garbage LOL 🙂

7. Pull into long ropes and cut into bite sized pieces with a buttered pizza cutter.

8. Wrap the pieces of taffy in squares of waxed paper and make sure to twist the ends really well to seal; store in an airtight container.

3-19-2013 Kool Aid Taffy (3)

3-19-2013 Kool Aid Taffy (5)

3-19-2013 Kool Aid Taffy (7)

Kool Aid Taffy

easy lemon cookies: just 5 simple ingredients

The kiddos and I made a lemon cookie recipe that has just 5 ingredients. The cookies tasted like little lemony bursts of goodness.

3-21-2013 lemon cookies (1)


  • 1 box of lemon cake mix
  • 1/3 c. oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. lemon extract
  • 1/4 c. powdered sugar


Mix together the cake mix, oil, eggs, and extract. Form the cookies into balls then roll ’em in powdered sugar, and press them down a little with your finger. Bake on ungreased baking sheets at 350F for 6-9 mins. They will still be pretty squishy when you take them out, but that’s what you want. Allow them to cool on the baking sheet before removing.

3-21-2013 lemon cookies (3)

lemon cookies

3-21-2013 lemon cookies (5)

3-21-2013 lemon cookies (6) 3-21-2013 lemon cookies (8)recipe adapted from