Candy Bar Brownies

8 Nov

Hi again!

I made brownies!!

Candy Bar Brownies!!!

I don’t know about you, but we are drowning in left-over Halloween candy at our house.

I decided today was a good time to consolidate it all.  It’s easier to keep track of what you have, if it’s all in one place…..don’t you think?

So, while the kids were at school;  I separated the candy stuff from the chocolate stuff.  Now there are 2 LARGE bowls of treats, instead of secret stashes hidden in every room, nook, and cranny.  (Although, I’m pretty sure they each have a few favorites tucked away somewhere.)

Anyway, as I was putting the overflowing chocolate-filled bowl into the fridge; inspiration hit me.

Enter….candy bar brownies!!

I took 2 handfuls of mini and funsize Snickers, Milky Way, 3 Musketeers and Twix bars, and chopped them up.

I baked a brownie layer for a few minutes, and then spread the candy bars all over the top.

Baked them for another few minutes, and then added mini-marshmallows.

Back in the oven for one last time, to let the marshmallows get golden and puffy.

Gave them a chocolate drizzle……..and WOW!

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Candy Bar Brownies

  • 1 box of chocolate cake mix
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups of chocolate candy bars, chopped thin
  • 1 and 1/2 cups mini-marshmallows
  • chocolate syrup, for drizzle (optional)

–  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9 x 13 inch pan with cooking spray and set aside.

–  In a medium bowl, mix cake mix, butter and egg until combined.  It will be thick.

–  Press into the bottom of prepared pan.

–  Bake 12 minutes, until the brownies are soft set.

–  Evenly spread chopped candy bars onto the semi-baked brownies.  Bake 6 minutes.

–  Remove from oven, and sprinkle marshmallows over the top of the candy bar layer.

–  Bake an additional 6 minutes (until the marshmallows are puffy and turning golden), remove from oven.

–  Drizzle with chocolate syrup.

–  Cool completely before cutting.

*cake mix brownie recipe from The Domestic Rebel

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I have to say, I love the Snickers bars in these……the peanuts totally stand out.

You can play around with all kinds of chocolate bars to create different flavored brownies.  They are a great way to use up your candy stash, so let me know how yours turn out! 🙂

Enjoy!!

Love, Lara

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Red, White, and Blue Cookies

7 Nov

Hi again!  Happy Election Day!

I made cookies!!

Red, White, and Blue Cookies!!!

Since today we had the privilege to vote, I thought something a little patriotic would be fitting!!  And, because these cookies have no political affiliation; they are a perfect Election Day treat for everyone.

Well, unless you don’t like cookies…….but then we couldn’t be friends, and you wouldn’t be reading this anyway!  So, let’s just pretend that isn’t even a possibility!

We are all cookie lovers here, right??

Right!!

These cookies are full of white chocolate, dried cherries, and dried blueberries!

So yummy, so yummy!! (Have you seen the kid’s show Yo Gabba Gabba?  If not, you’re  really missing out  lucky!  That’s where my “so yummy” comes from. You can hear it here if you are curious, but be prepared to have the song burned into your brain!  Sorry!) But seriously, they are…….So Yummy!  You should sing that song every time you eat one!

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Red, White, and Blue Cookies

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • (1) 5 oz. bag of dried cherries
  • (1) 5 oz bag of dried blueberries

–  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray, or line with parchment paper.  Set aside.

–  In a medium bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy.

–  Add in eggs, and mix until completely incorporated.

–  In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

–  Slowly sift the dry ingredients into the wet mixture, stir until combined.

–  Fold in white chips, dried cherries and dried blueberries.

–  Place heaping tablespoons on the prepared cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.  Bake 12-14 minutes.  Edges will start to brown.

–  Allow the cookies cool on the cookie sheet for 5 to 7 minutes.  They stay soft for a while and firm up as they cool.

–  Transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.

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Did you vote?  I did…I even got my little sticker to prove it! 🙂

Luckily, voting only took about 2o minutes. I had a 3-year-old helper that probably wouldn’t have lasted much longer than that.  Pretty much everyone in line asked him who he was voting for.  Had I known this would happen, I would have totally coached him to say something ridiculous.

Anyway, I am super proud that I live in this country!!  And, I am SOOO glad the political commercials are done…….enough already, huh?

I hope your voting experience went as smoothly as mine.  And, since you voted (or even if you didn’t)……. you should have a cookie!

Regardless who wins, I hope you enjoy!!

Love, Lara

Chocolate and Cookie Dough Layer Cake with Cookie Dough Buttercream Frosting

6 Nov

Hi again!

I made cake!!

Chocolate and Cookie Dough Layer Cake with Cookie Dough Buttercream Frosting!!!

I didn’t take a lot of pictures of this cake because it was for a friend, but I decided that I really needed to share it.  It’s one of those cakes that you have to eat in moderation….it’s sweet and rich and ridiculously yummy!!  Everyone will want the recipe…..amazing!

First, make (2) 9 x 13 cakes.  I used chocolate because that is what the birthday boy wanted, but you can choose whatever flavor you would like.  Feel free to use a cake mix, or go ahead and make your own “from scratch” recipe….the choice is yours!!

Next is the “oh my” part of the recipe!  Pipe cookie dough onto one of the cake layers.  I found that the dough was too thick to spread, so I put it in a bag and squeezed lines of cookie dough onto the cake.

Then, top with the second layer.  Looks amazing already, huh?!?

Frost!!

You will be so glad you did!!

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Cookie Dough

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 4 Tbsp. milk
  • 2 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup mini-chocolate chips

–  In a medium bowl, cream butter and sugars.

–  Add milk, flour and salt.  Mix on medium speed until combined.

–  Fold in chocolate chips.

Cookie Dough Buttercream Frosting

  • 3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 3 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. milk

–  In a medium bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.

–  Slowly add in powdered sugar and milk until thoroughly combined.  Continue beating until smooth.

–  Spread onto cake, or pipe onto cupcakes.

*Cookie dough and frosting recipes slightly adapted from Chef in Training

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This cookie dough can be used for so many different things!  My kids love when I roll it into balls, and dip the balls into chocolate.

Cookie Dough Truffles!!

There is an entire cookbook full of recipes made with cookie dough, it’s called the Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook by Lindsay Landis. (Imagine that!!)  I LOVE it!  If you have a thing for cookie dough, I’m thinking you should check it out!

Enjoy!!

Love, Lara

Peppermint Patty Cookies

5 Nov

Hi again!

I made cookies!!

Peppermint Patty Cookies!!!

Have you ever made cake mix cookies??  If not, you have been missing out!!

They are super easy, and you only need 3 ingredients to make them……cake mix, eggs, and oil.  You can change them up with different cake mix flavors, so just imagine all of the possibilities!!!  And….. if you really want to be exciting, throw in your favorite candy.

For this cookie, I used chocolate cake mix.  Then, I wrapped the dough around a peppermint patty.

I convinced my kids that I’m magic with these cookies.  When they asked me how I got the peppermint patty inside, I simply said, “MAGIC!!”.  They shrugged their shoulders, and kept eating.  They must have already assumed that was how I did it, because they didn’t need much convincing.

You can be magic too!!  Get your wand ready……

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Peppermint Patty Cookies

  • 1 box chocolate cake mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 18 peppermint patties, frozen

–  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray, or line with parchment paper.  Set aside.

–  In a medium bowl, beat cake mix, eggs and oil for about 30 seconds.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and continue beating until completely combined.

–  Refrigerate for an hour, or until the dough is firm and can be worked with easily by hand.

–  Using a 2 Tbsp. scoop,  make balls with the dough. (If you don’t have a scoop, roll dough into one inch balls.)  Press a peppermint patty into the middle and shape the dough up and around the top, until the entire patty is covered in cookie dough.

–  Place onto prepared cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.

–  Bake 12 to 14 minutes, or until cookie is set on the top. (you will be able to press on it, and it won’t sink in.)

–  Remove from oven, and allow them cool on the cookie sheet an additional 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.

* Cake Mix Cookie recipe adapted from  here  on allrecipes.com.

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Taaaaaa-Dahhhhhh!!

I hope this recipe comes in handy, especially if you have pounds and pounds of Halloween candy lying around your house like I do!!!  Use your imagination, and get baking! 🙂

Enjoy!!

Love, Lara

This Week’s Mom Bakes

3 Nov

Hi again!

It’s been a busy week!!

I spent a very long morning in terrible traffic, just to deliver these yummy cupcakes to a birthday party.

I planned ahead for a power outage (that thankfully never came!), and made these no-bake cookies…..

I satisfied my Oreo obsession, and baked some pretty awesome brownie/blondie bars.

I spent the day hanging out with an adorable mummy, and shared some yummy pumpkin cupcakes.

And, I baked oatmeal cookies to make a few very bored children smile.

Trick or treating was postponed here because of Hurricane Sandy.  I’m glad that it wasn’t totally cancelled, my kids had a super time.  Can you imagine the amount of candy 6 children come home with??  Well…….you don’t have to, I’ll show you……..

Actually, this is only 3 children’s loot.  My daughter was pretty sly, and hid her candy so her brothers couldn’t bribe her out of the good stuff.  And, the 2 oldest boys decided to hand out candy instead.

I think I’ll be baking quite a few candy filled cookies and brownies in the next few weeks, so stay tuned.

I stalked a few blogs this week.  You should check them out!

Pint Sized Baker (tie-dyed cake pops, seriously!?!)

High Heels and Grills  (Dulce de Leche Cheese Cake bars, and a link party with tons of great ideas!)

Wishes and Dishes  (Biscoff…..ahhhhh!)

Does Not Cook Well With Others (day 6 of 12 days of Christmas treats, and an online bake sale!)

Chocolate, Chocolate and More (that speaks for itself, don’t you think?)

And, Mom Bakes hit 1000 page views this week! YAY!!!  Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

Enjoy your week-end!!  Thanks for reading! 🙂

Love, Lara

Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies

2 Nov

Hi again!

I made cookies!!

Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies!!!

It’s been a long week!

This is pretty much how it went……

Monday – Kids: No School, closed due to Hurricane Sandy

Tuesday  – Kids: No School, closed due to Hurricane Sandy

Wednesday –  Kids:  2 hour delay

Thursday –  Kids: No School, Teacher In-Service

Friday –  Kids: No School, Teacher In-Service

You get my point, right??   L. O. N. G. week!!

Don’t get me wrong……I love spending time with my children, but it is nice having a few hours during the week when I can do “me” things, you know?  The fact that they were stuck inside and couldn’t go out to play, changed the dynamics totally!  6 bored children is NOT a fun thing!

Cookies make everything better!  So, I made cookies.  Big, yummy, chocolatey, oatmeal cookies!!

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Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3 cups oats
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chunks

–  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, or spray with cooking spray.  Set aside.

–  In a medium bowl, cream butter and sugars.  Mix in eggs, one at a time.

–  Sift in flour, baking soda and salt.  Beat until combined.

–  Fold in oats and chocolate chunks.

–  Place heaping tablespoons onto prepared cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.  Bake 10 to 16 minutes, depending on the size of your cookie.  (The edges will start to brown, and the middles should be set.)

–  Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

*recipe adapted from Quaker Oatmeal’s Vanishing Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

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I was going to make these cookies with raisins.

And then, one of my little angels said, “You’re putting raisins in them? Do you have to put raisins in them?”

Erghhhhh!!  Nope I don’t.  So, for the sake of my children’s happiness….. I used chocolate chunks, instead of raisins.  Apparently, in my house;  No Raisins=No Whining.  After 5 days of being rained in….. No Whining=Happy Mom!

You can use raisins if you want! 🙂  But, I have to admit; the chocolate kinda rocks!

So try them, ok??

Enjoy!!

Love, Lara

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes

1 Nov

Hi again!

I made cupcakes!!

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes!!!

I made them last week for a birthday party…along with these cupcakes, that I shared on Monday!  Sorry for posting 2 cupcake recipes in one week, I’m hoping you like them enough that you don’t mind.  My plan had been to share them with you next week, but today ended up being super busy and I didn’t have time to bake something new.

My little guy had an EEG.

Pretty cute, huh?  They made him look like a mummy too! Pretty fitting for Halloween!!

He was a trooper, and actually laid down calmly for the entire test…….whew, was I relieved!  He deserved a cupcake! 🙂  Instead, he got a new racecar and lunch at McDonald’s.

You get the cupcakes….the recipe, anyway!!

Start with a cake mix.  I love doctoring up cake mixes.  It’s such a simple way to make something a little more special!

Throw in a few additional ingredients and you have a super cupcake!

Frost with Cream Cheese Frosting, and you have a FABULOUS cupcake!!

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Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

     for the cupcakes 

  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1 cup pure pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

–  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Fill cupcake/muffin pans with 24 cupcake liners, set aside.

–  In a large bowl, combine cake mix, pumpkin, water, oil, eggs and spice.

–  Beat on low for 30 seconds.  Scrape the sides of the bowl,  continue to beat for another minute on medium or until all the ingredients are well combined.

–  Fill each of the cupcake liners about 2/3 full.

–  Bake 16 to 22 minutes. Or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.  (I press the middles, if they bounce back they are done.)

–  Cool completely on a wire rack.

      for the frosting

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar

–  In a medium bowl,  beat butter and cream cheese until smooth.

–  Slowly add powdered sugar to creamed mixture.

–  Whip for 3-4 minutes, or until fluffy.

–  Pipe onto cooled cupcakes.

*Cake recipe adapted from Betty Crocker’s Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes.

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I hope they give you cupcake fever!!

Enjoy!!

Love, Lara

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