Category Archives: dessert

Homemade Twix Bar

No. You didn’t read that wrong. I really did say homemade Twix bar.  We could give it another name..something fancy like, ‘Chocolate-y, Carmel-y, melt in your mouth goodness bar”, which would really make more sence,’s a pain to type. And I’m all about simple when it comes to typing.  So, Homemade Twix Bar it is. 🙂 

I first had these babies at a Bunco game.  I think I did more eating then playing that night, but who’s watching, right?? The second time I had these was over the 4th of July.  I made them for everyone (there was 16 of us), and I believe I downed my fair share, PLUS everyone elses. Yeah..that was me. The twix bar theif.  Oops! This should all just tell you how delicious these really are.  Healthy. Um….no comment.  But tasty??? ABSOLUTELY!!!  (and sometimes taste has to come first. Right? Right??)  The crust is a delicate shortbread cookie. I know, right?  Then, topped with chocolate and caramel goodness….it really should be banned to have this treat. But hey, I’m not the food banner, so looks like we’ll be having this every now and then. 🙂  For a really good step by step on how to make this, check out Our Best Bites here.  Amazing job explaining how to make this.

This recipe comes here from Our Best Bites.
Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour by Our Best Bites
(Recipe below is from their site, with my added thoughts mixed in.)

The Ingredients:

1 c. salted butter at room temperature
1 c. powdered sugar
2 c. all-purpose flour, lightly spooned into measuring cups and leveled with a knife
1 tsp. vanilla
2 c. caramels (1 14-oz. package Kraft caramel or 2 c. homemade caramel)
3 tablespoons cream (see notes above)
3 cups mini Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (about 1 1/2 11-oz. bags)

The How-To:

*Preheat oven to 300. Spray a 9×13″ pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
*In a large bowl or the bowl of your mixer, combine the butter, sugar, flour, and vanilla until the mixture comes together. 
* Lightly press the shortbread dough into the pan.
*Prick with a fork to prevent the crust from bubbling. 
*Bake for 35-45 minutes or until the crust is lightly golden. 
*Remove from oven and run a knife around the edges of the bars. Allow to cool completely.

*Combine the caramels and cream in a microwave-safe bowl and heat for 3-4 minutes, stirring each minute, until the mixture is smooth.
*Spread evenly over the cookie crust, then place the pan in the refrigerator and chill for 30-60 minutes or until the caramel is solid.

*In a microwave-safe bowl, heat the unwrapped Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups until melted and smooth, stirring each 45 seconds. 
*Spread over the cooled caramel.
*Place in refrigerator for 1-2 hours or until the chocolate layer is solid.  (They can also be placed in the freezer for less time if you’re in a hurry.) 
* Cut into squares and serve. Store leftovers in a cool area or the refrigerator to prevent messy disasters. (and trust me..disasters will happen. Not that I mind licking chocolate off my fingers..)

While this recipe is easy to make, it does require a bit of time.  You do a lot of freezing in between the steps, but I promise you..if you’re looking for a party in your mouth..this is the one to try. 🙂


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Chocolate Rolo Cookies


I know..I can hardly believe it myself!! Who would have thought that ROLO’s and COOKIES belonged together. Well..that person is a genius. Just sayin’!  I first saw this recipe at one of my most favorite food sites here.   Her pictures are amazing. No..Ah-Mazing!! Maybe she invented these sweet treats. I don’t know. But what I do know is that these cookies are absolutely delish.  Chocolat-y…carmel-y…melt in your mouth, sinfully bad for you delicious.  (and did I mention super easy to make??)  The ingredients are few, which is an added bonus because really, when it comes down to it, who wants to spend a lot of time in the kitchen when you could be doing other meaningful things like..taste testing other food. 🙂   I’ve officially decided that these cookies will be on my Christmas neighbor gift list.  So if you’re my prepared for these to grace your taste buds. 🙂

Here’s the recipe as told by Buns In My Oven. *my additions are in parenthesis*

The Ingredients:

  • 1 box Devil’s Food cake mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • Rolo candies, unwrapped

The How-To:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment.
  3. Mix together the first three ingredients.
  4. Grab a small piece of dough, about half the size of a golf ball,  and roll it into a ball.
  5. Smoosh it flat, place a Rolo in the center, and then close the dough around the Rolo. Repeat until all of the dough is used. (after we covered the Rolo’s, we rolled the dough ball gently until it was a nice circle.)
  6. Bake for about 9 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Delicious served warm or at room temperature.

I would love it if you tried these and let me know how you like them. 😀


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Ice Cream Sandwich Cookies

I always feel giddy when I think about an ice cream sandwich.  Not sure why..but it just makes me happy.  And, after one too many attempts to chase down the ice cream man and missing him by mere seconds, I knew I had to learn how to make my own ice cream sandwich.  I found this recipe and realized that it doesn’t even use ice cream..but..I think I might like it better that way. Shhhh…don’t tell the ice cream man. I’ll let you decide what you like best.  Either way, my freezer is stock full of these bad boys.  😀

(For the cookies)
1 package devil’s food cake mix
2 eggs
1/2 cup oil

The How-To: 


*Heat oven to 350 degrees.
*Add oil and eggs to cake mix and blend together. (Mix will be stiff.)
*Roll dough into balls, (about the size of a quarter..don’t worry, they will be a bit bigger)
*Place on greased cookie sheet.
*Press down slightly on each cookie with the bottom of a glass cup or your fist.  Not too hard, just enough to make it spread out a bit and is somewhat flat.
*Bake for 8 minutes.
*Remove from oven and let cool on sheet (until warm).
*Remove cookies from sheet and place on cooling rack.

Cream Cheese Filling Recipe:
1 – stick butter (1/2 cup)
1 – 8oz  cream cheese, softened 
3-4 cups – confectioner’s sugar (depending on desired consistency.  I usually go with 3 cups)
1 – tsp vanilla extract

*Cream butter and add cream cheese and mix well. Add confectioner’s sugar slowly until you reach your desired consistency.

To assemble the cookies:
*Add about a tablespoon of filling into the center of one cookie.
*Place another cookie similar in size on top of the filling.
*Lightly press, to work the filling evenly to the outsides of the cookie.
*Continue this process until all the cookies have been sandwiched with cream.
*Place in an air tight container or freezer ziplock bags and store in the freezer until the cream frosting is frozen. 
*When ready to eat, let set out in room temperature for a few minutes to soften the cream up a bit. (about 3 minutes..remember, it’s supposed to resemble ice cream. :D)

After you make your batch, let me know how you like it. Oh..and one more thing..if you want to be really daring, you could add a little peppermint extract flavoring to the cream mixture and have a little Oreo/peppermint cookie. YUM!! One of our favorite Christmas cookies to make. 🙂

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Easy-Peasy mini cheesecakes

These little beauties are so, so easy to make, and so, so easy to devour. I’m not sure that’s a good thing, but for today, let’s just say that it is. 😀  It’s been a warm summer and we needed something cool to eat.  Something..graham cracker-y, and cheescake-y topped with a little bit of fruit. BINGO!! Mini cheesecakes entered our life. We’re so glad to have them come and stay. 😉

The Ingredients:

  • 2 cups crushed graham cracker
  • 8 TBL margarine-melted
  •  8 TBL sugar
  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • strawberries or any other fruit to top cheesecake with
The How-To: 
For the crust:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line miniature muffin tins with miniature paper liners.
  2. Crush the graham crackers until a fine crumb. 
  3. Melt the butter. When melted, mix in 8 TBL. of sugar until well mixed.
  4. Combine the crumbs with the butter mixture.
  5. Press into the lined muffin tins.
  6. Bake for 10 minutes, watching it closely to make sure it doesn’t burn. 

While the crust is cooking, make the cheesecake:

*In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and lemon juice until light and fluffy. 
* When the crust has cooled completely, fill each miniature muffin liner with the cheesecake mixture, almost to the top.
* Top with a teaspoonful of cherry pie filling.
*Eat immediately or store in the fridge until ready to eat. 

(Just a side note: the crust might get a little soft the longer you wait to eat it. I suggest eating it ASAP. You’ll thank me later. :D)


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Peanut-y Fruit Dip

You are not going to believe this.  No, really..I didn’t either.   This delicious fruit dip is made with something you would never guess.  I’m a little hesitant to even tell you what it is because I don’t want to scare you off.  However, I will.  But before I do, let me just tell you how yummy this is.  It’s YUMMY!!  ok..I’ll tell you more.  It’s absolutely delicious!! We love to dip fruit chunks in it..apples, pineapple,’s all good.  If we’re really crazy, we dip crackers in it. (see photos for proof of our dipping craziness.)  Ok..are you ready for the secret ingredient? Here it is……….drum roll please……………garbanzo beans. There. I said it.  Now, before you run away and hide..just give it a try. It truly is tasty, and healthy, for you.  I stumbled upon this recipe here, at Chocolate Covered Katie.   And while you’re there, take a look around. Her stuff will blow your socks off. For reals..she’s genius when it comes to making healthy dishes that also taste fantastic. 🙂

Ok..on to the recipe:

The Ingredients: 
1 1/2 cups chickpeas (1 can, drained) (250g)
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup nut butter
1/4 cup plus 3T nondairy milk (I used 1%. It’s all I had)
2/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup chocolate chips
Optional: I add 1/4 cup flaxmeal for omega 3s and a fun texture (you can also add quick oats!)

The How-To:
Add all ingredients (except for chocolate chips) to a blender or food processor, and blend until very smooth. Then mix in the chocolate chips. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Now, if you’ll notice, mine turned out a little more creamy then hers.  That’s because I didn’t have any flaxmel and didn’t use quick oats.  Next time, I think I will use the oats. could I not have any chocolate chips on hand!? That should be illegal!!! Next time (and there WILL be a next time!) I’ll be adding these for sure. 

Very yum! Just sayin’…


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Glazed Doughnut Muffin

I know what you’re thinking..”How in the world have I not had these before?”  The answer is..I live under a rock.  But now that I’ve come out into the world of taste heaven, these little muffins were something I had to try.  I mean, come’s a donut and a muffin in one.  Pure genius!!  I first saw these treats here from Sweet Peas Kitchen. (awesome site, by the way.)  She had me at ‘glazed.’

Your family will thank you for this easy treat, and what’s especially nice is that you can have it for breakfast or a a dessert. 

Glazed Doughnut Muffins, from Sweet Peas Kitchen

The Ingredients

For the Muffins:

 1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup milk

 For the Glaze:

 3 tablespoons butter; melted
1 cup confectioners’ sugar; sifted
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons hot water

The How-To:

*Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F. Line 12 muffin cups with muffin liners or spray with non-stick cooking spray.

*In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter, vegetable oil, and sugars till smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time. With the mixer on low speed, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt and vanilla until just combined. Stir the flour into the butter mixture alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour and making sure everything is thoroughly combined.

*Spoon batter into cups, filling the cups, and smooth tops. Divide batter equally among prepared muffin cups. Bake until muffin tops are a pale golden and springy to the touch, 15 to 17 minutes, rotating halfway through baking time. Cool muffins in muffin tin for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack and cool 10 minutes before glazing.

*To make the glaze, In a medium bowl mix together the melted butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and water. Whisk until smooth.

*When muffins have cooled slightly, dip the muffin crown into the glaze and allow the glaze to harden. Once hardened, dip a second time  and allow to harden then serve.

 Yields: 12 muffins

 Note: Muffins will keep at room temperature for about a day.


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Fruit Pizza



You can’t tell me you’re not drooling right now.’re not drooling?? How can I be the only one going crazy over this dish? Well, it could be because you haven’t made it…yet. 🙂  Which is why I will share with you one of my all-time favorite summer dishes.  It’s fruity. It’s sweet. It’s pizza. Only, better. Made with a pie crust, a secret little pudding sauce that will have you doing a happy dance in no time, and topped with mounds of fresh fruit, this beauty screams “SUMMER”.  (at least, at my house that’s what I hear…) 


1 pie crust (homemade or refrigerated store-bought. I use store-bought. Don’t  judge.)
1 box instant vanilla pudding mix
2 cups cold milk
1 carton whipped cream (you can use lite or fat-free if you’d like. Both are delicious)
1 cup sliced fresh strawberries, washed
1 cup halved blueberries, washed
1 cup fresh peach slices
1 cup fresh raspberries
1 banana, sliced
1/2 cup softened butter
cinnamon and sugar to sprinkle

The How-To:

(the crust)
Pre-heat oven to 350*
*Roll out pie crust onto baking sheet
*Spread a thin layer of butter over the top of the pie crust, making sure to get right to the edges
*Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar over the top of the butter
*Bake for 12-20 minutes or until crust is cooked through and golden
*Remove from oven and let cool completely

The toppings:
*In a large mixing bowl, combine the box of vanilla pudding mix and 2 cups of cold milk.  Mix well
*Add the whipped cream.  Again, mix well
*Place pudding mixture in the refrigerator until ready to use
*Meanwhile, take the strawberries, blueberries, peaches, raspberries and any other fruit of choice.  Wash and slice into bite sized pieces. 

*When the crust has cooled completely, spread the pudding mixture over top.  Make sure you spread it all the way to the edges, you don’t want to leave any crust feeling left out.
*Top with fresh berries..again, covering all the crust to the edges. 
*Serve immediately.  The crust has a tendency to get a little soft  if you don’t eat it quickly after topping it with the pudding and berry mixture.  But hey, can we really be patient enough to wait?? No.  Eating it right away works for me.

Are you drooling now?  Maybe if I tell you that the crust is light and flaky, and the pudding mixture adds just the right amount of sweetness to make the fruit sing praises to Summer. Now are you drooling?  Maybe another photo will do the job..

I don’t know about you, but I need to go make this…right now.  As in..RIGHT. NOW.  Care to join me??  😀  What are some of your favorite summer time treats??

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Peanut Butter Oatmeal Ball

When I first saw this post  about these delicious Peanut Butter Oatmeal Balls..I had to try them out.  First, they have peanut butter in them. Everyone knows that one of my weaknesses is peanut butter. didn’t know that? Oh. Well, now you do. And now you know that if you offer me peanut butter on a spoon, I’ll gobble it up. Or peanut butter on a popsicle stick, I’ll take that as my cue to make toast and spread pb all over it.  The best thing for all of us would be to just put the peanut butter down, and walk away.  But we’re not talking about that. We’re talking about these yummy peanut butter oatmeal balls.

I love that you can have these for a breakfast, snack, or a “I’m-trying-to-be-good-” dessert.  The real test came when I offered them to my kids.  Would they like them? Would they throw them at me? Answer: They LOVED them. (I can safely come out of hiding. Whew!)

Here’s the recipe in its original form.  I did make a few changes (added in italics).  Overall..perfection and delicious. 

3/4 cup rolled oats
2 tablespoons unsalted, roasted sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons pistachios, chopped (I didn’t have any, so I used chopped peanuts)
1/4 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped
1/4 cup dried blueberries, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (I left this out because of the salt on the peanuts..I figured I didn’t need it. It’s up to you.)
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup chunky peanut butter
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

 The How-To:

*In a large bowl, combine all ingredients making sure to evenly distribute all the ingredients.  
*Roll some of the dough between your hands, if it sticks together it is ready to go. If it feels too dry then add a bit more peanut butter or honey. If it is too wet add extra oats or flaxseed.  
*Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll a heaping tablespoon of dough into a 1½-inch ball and then place it on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough. Chill in the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before serving. Store in airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

I really, REALLY like the dried cranberries and blueberries in this recipe.  It adds a little sweetness to the peanut/oatmeal flavor. My mouth may or may not be watering just thinking about this…
For a quick, easy and super yummy treat, make these. And send me any left overs.  (Did I mention I loved peanut butter?)


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Summer Fruit Salsa
























One of the great things about this fruit salsa, is that you don’t have to limit yourself to just strawberries, kiwi, and blueberries.  No siree..go ahead and add pineapple, or mango, or if you’re really wild and about throwing some pear chunks in there?  Can’t you see it now? “Mom of Year” Award because of this amazing simple dish that the whole family..the whole neighborhood..heck, the whole town will love. 😀 

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Coffee Cake

Hold on while I wipe the drool off the computer.Oh wow!! This little number is …………what’s the word…….asjdflasjdf!  Yes. That’s it. 😀  If you like coffee cake, you’ll love, LOVE this one. First of all..look at that topping!!  Ok. Now stop looking at the topping. Focus, people. 😉  I first saw this coffee cake here, at “Buns in my oven”.  (For reals..such a fun site. Go check it out!)  Ever since then, I’ve been waiting for the perfect moment to try it. Do I make it when my family is around so we can all enjoy some, or do I wait until they’re all gone so I can devour it alone? Decisions,decisions.  In the end..I decided to make it when I was alone, but save it for when everyone else got home. We’re talking major self control.

This was a recipe unlike any other that I’vemade before.  The cake is so melt-in-your-mouth scrumptious. I’m not even kidding.  The topping is crumbly and infused with flavor.  Not an overpowering flavor, but just enough to have it all come together on your tastebuds.  I think the secret is in the sour cream.  Just sayin’..

Coffee Cake (from Buns in my oven)


For the crumb topping:

  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) melted butter
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

For the cake:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) butter
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

The How-to:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter the sides and bottom of a glass 9×13 pan. You can use a metal pan, but the edges may get a bit crispy.

To make the crumb topping, mix both sugars, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Add the melted butter and whisk until combined. Fold in the flour until it is absorbed. Spread out a large sheet of parchment paper on the counter and spread this mixture out on the parchment paper to dry while you make the cake mixture.

To make the cake, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and slat together in a medium bowl and set aside.

Cream the butter until it is smooth and ribbonlike  in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle. Scrape down the bowl and add the sugar. Beat until fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until incorporated. Scrape the bowl and mix again for 30 seconds. Add the sour cream and vanilla and beat just until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients in three parts, scraping down the bowl before each addition, beaiting only until it is just incorporated.

To assemble the cake, pour the batter in the prepared pan. Use your hands to scoop up a handful of the topping and make a fist. The topping should hold together. Break off in chunks and drop them over the cake. Repeat to use all the topping. Remember, the topping layer will look very thick.

Bake the cake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Rotate the pan two times during the baking process. Cool the entire pan on a wire rack for 30 minutes before serving.

The cake will last for 3 days, tightly covered, at room temperature.


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