Archives for category: Desserts

My grandmother makes the best snickerdoodles on the entire planet.  When Christmastime comes around, we all gather around in her kitchen and sample her cookie platter.  It’s full of delicious traditions, which I really cherish.  And although I absolutely adore grandma’s snickerdoodles, I wanted to try a Fall variation because I just might not be able to hold out until the holidays.

These cookies are super soft and fluffy.  They aren’t the typical snickerdoodle texture since they have the pumpkin in them.  They puff up nicely and keep well for a few days in a sealed container.  This recipe makes about two dozen cookies.

-3/4 Cup Pumpkin Puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
-1 Cup Unsalted Butter
-1 Cup Sugar
-1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
-1 Egg
-1 teaspoons Vanilla
-3 3/4 Cups Flour
-1 1/2 teaspoons Baking Powder
-1/2 teaspoon Salt
-3/4 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice
-1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon

For the coating:
-1/2 Cup Sugar
-1 teaspoon Cinnamon
-1/4 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice

Preheat oven to 350F.  In a large bowl, beat together butter and sugars until light and fluffy.  Stir in pumpkin puree, egg, and vanilla and mix until incorporated.

In a separate medium bowl, mix together flour, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice.  Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed.

On a small plate, mix together cinnamon, sugar, and pumpkin pie spice for the coating.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and roll balls into small ping-pong ball sizes. Roll each dough ball in the coating the place on the baking sheet.  Gently press down on each ball with the bottom of a glass to flatten a little.  Bake for 13-14 minutes.  Allow to cool for a minute on the pan, and then remove onto a cooling rack.

Now that Summer is wrapping up, I am finally sharing this incredible ice cream recipe with the world.  I had made a couple batches of other flavors of ice cream, but this one is life-changing!  I love cheesecake, I love strawberries, and I love ice cream…what more could you want?

Go grab some fresh strawberries while you still can and give this a try!

-12 Ounces Strawberries, hulled and sliced
-8 Ounces Cream Cheese
-1 Cup Sour Cream
-1/2 Cup Half & Half
-1 Cup Sugar
-1 Pinch Salt
-3 Graham Crackers, crushed

Puree the strawberries and pour into a medium sized bowl.
Add sour cream and cream cheese.

Add half and half, lemon juice, sugar, and salt.  Mix well until it is all incorporated.

Chill in the fridge for 3-4 hours, until well chilled.  Pour into ice cream maker and make according to manufacturer’s directions.  During the last 5 minutes, add the crushed graham crackers.  Freeze overnight.

Scoop and serve!

With the holiday coming up, I figured I’d share some ideas of great things to make and take to a 4th of July cookout!  Instead of your usual sides, appetizers, and desserts, I’ve included a few unique ones.  Enjoy!

Hummus and Veggies 


Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread Muffins
Simple White Sangria
 Refreshing Lemon Sparkler

Key Lime Pie- with Coconut Graham Crust

Cake Batter Rice Krispie Treats

I recently received some of the best fruit of the season:  perfectly ripe, yellow peaches. I originally wanted to bake a dessert with them, such as a pie or a crisp.  But after sampling one, I knew it would be a total waste to bake them. I found this recipe through Bon Appetit and modified it slightly so I could showcase these peaches. Makes 3-4 custards.

-1 Cup Heavy Cream
-2 Tablespoons Honey, divided
-5 teaspoons Sugar
-1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Bean Paste (or Vanilla)
-1 2-inch Strip Lemon Peel
-3 Tablespoons Light Rum
-1 Cup Peaches, sliced

In a small saucepan, heat cream, honey, and sugar over medium low heat.  Allow to start to simmer.  Add vanilla and lemon peel and remove the saucepan from heat.  Let steep for five minutes and remove the lemon peel.  Pour custard into ramekins and place in the fridge for at least an hour, or for a day at the most.

For the fruit:  Toss thinly sliced peaches in honey and rum and let sit for an hour.  Stir and serve on top of the custard.

This is a fun and cute idea for grilling a tasty dessert!  It’s also great for any camping trips.  It’s always nice to avoid firing up the oven and heating up the house during these hot Summer days!

No precise measurements here- if you like lots of chocolate, add more pieces.  If you like tons of gooey marshmallows, pack them in!

-2 Bananas
-Handful of Mini Marshmallows
-Handful of Crushed Graham Crackers
-A Few Pieces of Chocolate Squares

Slice a banana in half lengthwise, being sure not to slice through the top, bottom, of back part of the banana, as pictured:

Gently put in pieces of graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate.

Wrap in foil and grill on medium heat for 5 minutes.

Remove with tongs and let cool for a few minutes.

Eat and enjoy!  I found it easiest to scoop out with a spoon.

Happy Summer!

It’s over 95 degrees here today!  It just so happens to be my birthday and it feels way too hot to do just about anything.  We decided to grill out and make some filets, grilled corn, and veggies at home.  Instead of making dessert and heating up the house with the oven, we decided to pick something up from one of my favorite bakeries.

I’m a sucker for beautiful packaging!

Let’s see what’s in here…

Why oh why did I only buy two?

Have a great Memorial weekend!  I hope you take the time to treat yourself to something extra special.

My first attempt at Strawberry Shortcake about a year ago was a total disaster.  It was the first time I’d used a recipe from a blog (one who is a book author, too!) that was incorrect.  It called for baking soda instead of baking powder (rookie mistake!) and I was heartbroken it turned out so poorly since it was for my husband’s birthday.  This year, I’m getting my practice in before his birthday arrives!

Anyways, please know that this Strawberry Shortcake recipe is correctly written!  It is a great recipe that is simple and lovely.  It has the perfect balance of sweetness and it isn’t too sweet like many are.

Don’t you just want to dig in?
 I love strawberry season!


For the Shortcake:
-2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
-1/2 teaspoon Salt
-1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
-3 Tablespoons Sugar
-1 Stick (8 tablespoons) of Cold Butter
-1 Egg
-1/2 Cup Heavy Cream

For the Strawberries:
-1 Package (16 Ounces) Strawberries, thawed and crushed
-16 ounces Fresh Strawberries, rinsed, hulled, and sliced
-5 Tablespoons Sugar

For the Whipped Cream:
-1 Cup Chilled Heavy Cream
-1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
-1 teaspoon Sugar

Place the oven rack to the middle-lower position and preheat to 425F.

Mix flour, salt, baking powder, and 3 Tablespoons of sugar in a medium bowl.

Cut in cold butter with a pastry cutter- or a butter knife and fork.
Mix egg and whipping cream and pour into the flour mixture.

Gently mix together until just incorporated.  It won’t be perfectly smooth, which is ok. Overworking the dough will result in tough and chewy shortcakes.

Roll out or press down the dough on the counter and cut into circles with a glass.

Put on a baking sheet with parchment paper.  If you don’t have any, lightly grease the pan with cooking spray.

Bake for 12-14 minutes, until edges are golden.

Mix frozen berries and strawberries together in a bowl with 5 Tablespoons of sugar.

After 20 minutes or so, they will get nice and juicy.

Beat the heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla together until stiff peaks form.

To assemble- Pile a heaping amount of strawberries in-between two shortcakes.   Top with whipped cream.

Eat and enjoy!

I’m normally not one to break out the box of cake mix, but sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures.  There was a bake sale at work for a charity, and I had plans the night before until decently late.  But, I couldn’t bring myself to contribute store bought goodies or two-day-old-goodies.  These Rice Krispie treats are embarrassingly quick and easy.  Almost too easy to share the secret of how easy they are for how delicious they are.  They sold out before 11:30am- I’m guessing it was the combination of “oh, I can have this for breakfast” and how delicious they were.



-6 Cups Rice Krispie Cereal
-3 Tablespoons Butter
-1 (10 Ounce) Bag of Mini Marshmallows
-1/2 Cup Yellow Cake Mix (not prepared, just dry cake mix)
-Cooking Spray (like Pam)

In a large pot, melt butter.  Once butter has melted, add marshmallows and stir until they are completely melted. Slowly add in the 1/2 Cup of cake mix, stirring until dissolved.  Add one cup of the cereal at a time, gently stirring it in.  Spray a light coating of cooking spray in a 9×13 pan.  Pour in rice krispie mix.  To get the top nice and flat, press down on a sheet of wax paper over the top of the warm rice krispie mix in the pan.  Put a layer of sprinkles over the top while still warm.  Store in a sealed container until ready to serve.


These lemon cookies are perfect for a bridal or baby shower, or for an Easter celebration!  They are incredibly easy to make, including the drizzle on top.  I’m a challenged decorator, and I handled these just fine!

In fact, it was about 10:30pm the night before the I hosted the baby shower.  The cupcakes I purchased (oh, the horror!) were way too small, and I wanted some more dessert on the table.  If anyone knows me they know I love lemon, so I whipped up these adorable little cookies and put them on the table alongside the cupcakes.


-2 1/4 Cups All-Purpose Flour
-3/4 Cup Granulated Sugar-
-3 Tablespoons Lemon Zest
-1 Cup Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
-1 Large Egg
-1 teaspoon Vanilla Bean Paste (or Vanilla Extract)
-1/2 teaspoon baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon salt

For the drizzle:
-1 Cup Powdered Sugar
-5-6 teaspoons Fresh Lemon Juice

Preheat oven to 350F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, and salt.  In a separate small bowl, mix together sugar and lemon zest with a fork until fragrant.

In a large bowl, blend together softened butter and the lemon sugar mixture until fluffy and creamy.  Beat in vanilla and egg.  Slowly add the flour mixture until just incorporated.

Roll dough between palms, about the size of a tablespoon and place on the baking sheet at least an inch apart.   Bake for 12-14 minutes until the edges are just starting to turn golden.  Allow to cool for two minutes before removing from the baking sheet.  Allow to cool on a wire rack.

Mix together the powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth.  Use a small spoon to drizzle the icing over the tops of the cooled cookies.

These cookies will stay soft and delicious for up to three days in a sealed container.

I have been on the quest for the perfect peanut butter cookies for years.  Everyone has their own opinion of what a peanut butter cookie (or any cookie, for that matter) should be like.  Should it be crisp?  Soft?  Melt-in-your-mouth?  Cakey?

Well, this version is lightly crisp on the outside and cakey on the inside, making it a soft chewy cookie.  As close to crowd-pleasing perfection as it gets.

Adapted from Magnolia Bakery.


-1 1/4 Cups All-purpose Flour
-3/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
-1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
-1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter, softened
-1 Cup Smooth Peanut Butter, at room temperature
-3/4 Cup Sugar (1 Tablespoon reserved)
-1/2 Cup Light Brown Sugar, firmly packed
-1 Large Egg
-1 Tablespoon Milk
-1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Preheat oven to 350F.

In a large bowl combine dry ingredients:  flour, baking soda, and baking powder.

In a separate large bowl, cream together the peanut butter and butter until fluffy.  Add sugars, egg, milk, and vanilla extract; continue to beat until smooth.  Add in the flour mixture and beat until well incorporated.

Place remaining sugar (1 Tablespoon) on a plate.  Roll the dough into ping-pong sized balls, and then lightly roll in the sugar.  Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, leaving 2-3 inches between each cookie.

Bake 12-13 minutes.  The cookies will not appear done, so be careful not to over bake.  Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for a minute, then transfer to a wire rack.