Leftover Halloween Candy Blondies

This post featuring Leftover Halloween Candy Blondies originally appeared on our site on November 6th, 2012

Leftover Halloween Candy Blondies

With Halloween past us, the one thing I needed to do was get rid of all of the leftover Halloween candy. Especially the ones I loved… anything containing chocolate. So we went with a simple plan. We were going to turn our chocolate treasure into new, yummy treats to share with our friends and family.

This year we had not one but two trick-or-treaters and let me tell you that two adorable children in costumes are magnets for the good stuff. Yes, look at our score of yummy chocolate candies! 

So I had to act fast and turn the above into something I could giveaway as a homemade goodie bound to attract attention and hungry mouths no longer wanting holiday candy. Good thing our extended family loves sweets! It took less than 2 days for the whole batch of blondies to be completely demolished. A few crumbs left in their place. And oh were they worth it!

If you’ve never heard of or made blondies before, think of them as the brownies’ distant cousin. Still ooey gooey but without the cocoa. You can basically put just about anything into a blondie. They’re a great catch all for any ingredients you have on hand and want to combine. We stuck with the Snickers, Reeses peanut butter cups, and Baby Ruths for these blondies. The m & ms are earmarked for cookies and the rest will be taken to work by my husband.

If you have any leftover candy in your cupboards or on your countertop you should definitely try to make these delicious bars of gooey goodness. 

Leftover Halloween Candy Blondies

Leftover Halloween Candy Blondies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, almost melted
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup diced candy bars

Candy Blondies Ingredients

 Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 350. Grease an 8×8 baking pan. Cut up candy bars.

2. Cream the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy

Candy Blondies sugar and butter

3. Add in the egg and beat until well combined.

4. Add vanilla and salt and mix again.

5. Take bowl off stand mixer. Fold in flour until just combined.

6. Fold in candy bar pieces until just combined.

7. Spread mixture into pan and cook for 20-25 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

8. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes.

9. Turn onto a wire rack and let cool completely before digging in.

10. Cut into squares and serve.

Makes 16 servings

If you’re like me and cant wait to dig in, grab a small piece from the edge and enjoy it’s yummy gooeyness while everything’s still warm and hasn’t set. You’ll be glad you did. Then enjoy the rest when it’s cooled completely to enjoy the full effect of the melded flavors and crisp edges.

Do you have a great recipe for leftover Halloween candy?

I’d love to hear it!

Vanilla Raisin Oatmeal Squares

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Vanilla Raisin Oatmeal Squares

I don’t know about you but Daylight Savings Time is really kicking my butt. I’m pretty sure we’ve been late to school drop off every day this week and for some reason I just can’t adjust as easily this time around as I have in years past. I’ve been putting the kids to bed a little earlier each day to adjust their schedules but the baby still isn’t waking up until right before we have to leave for school. Poor kid!

I haven’t been able to drink enough coffee to get me going in the mornings. And that’s even when I use my new favorite creamer in the mix!

In an effort to make things easier I’ve been using a few tips to streamline our mornings. Sticking with a morning routine has saved us the hassle of forgetting things, being too late, or just feeling rushed in the mornings. And no one wants to feel rushed as you start the day. And having a go-to breakfast that you can make ahead is my #1 tip for making mornings easier. I may have to take my coffee to go but at least the kids are getting fed!

Vanilla Raisin Oatmeal Squares with International Delight Simply Pure Vanilla

Tips for Making Mornings Easier

  1. Make breakfast ahead of time.
  2. Have the kids pick out their clothes the night before.
  3. Pack lunches ahead of time OR create a snack area for easy to grab lunch options.
  4. Hang back packs by the door so they’re ready to go.
  5. 10 minutes before you have to leave the house, make sure the kids are dressed (including socks and shoes!) and lunches in back packs so nothing is forgotten.

Vanilla Raisin Oatmeal Squares with coffee

Vanilla Raisin Oatmeal Squares

  • 1½ cups quick cooking oats
  • ¼ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • 1 cup Vanilla creamer
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • cooking spray

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x13 baking dish.

Mix all ingredients in a bowl then spread out evenly in the baking dish.

Bake 20-25 until the edges are golden brown.

Tips for Making Mornings Easier

How do you make mornings easier? 

Bite Size Raspberry Tarts

RaspberryTarts

We are finally back in the swing of things as school started this week and we’re starting to create our new schedule. With this comes a tad bit more time during the day without all three kids at home as I work. So I’ve had some time while the baby sleeps to actually have some fun and bake a bit more. Using the same basic tart dough as the strawbery cream tarts and lemon blueberry tarts, I made some raspberry tarts for a fun weekday dessert to enjoy after dinner.

What I love about this recipe is how easy it is to throw together. And how many variations of a similar recipe can be made. Next time I’m planning on adding a little cocoa to the cream for these to pair the raspberry with some chocolate. With a little chocolate drizzle over these, they’d be perfect for my next girls night in paired with some delicious wine!

Raspberry Tarts with basic tart dough

Bite Size Raspberry Tarts

  • Basic Tart Recipe, baked and cooled
  • 8 ounces heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • fresh raspberries, washed and dried
  • Mint for garnish (optional)

In a mixing bowl on high speed, whisk whipping cream and powdered sugar until stiff. Add additional sugar if desired.

Spoon into prepared tart shells and top with raspberry and mint garnish.

Serve immediately

Makes 24

Raspberry Tarts with mint garnish

Cinnamon Zucchini Cake

Cinnamon Zucchini Cake
Getting creative with what we harvest from our garden has never been too tough. There are so many ways to make veggies delicious and fun. This time isn’t any different. I had the kids help me cut up the zucchini and shred it in our food processor. They love getting involved in the kitchen and are even more apt to try things that they make. Even when it’s zucchini. 
 
Since it’s almost the end of the summer and I really didn’t think I’d still be growing zucchini out of my ears, we’re making the best of it and even incorporating veggies in our baking. And these zucchini aren’t the little dinky zucchini you find in the grocery store. They’re huge!! So huge that one would probably make enought for 3-4 times this recipe easily. But we don’t need that many baked goods in our home right now.
This cake is moist, slightly sweet but not too sweet, and amazingly delicious. It’s perfect for an afternoon snack without the icing but adding the icing takes it to dessert level. And it pairs perfectly with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Cinnamon Zucchini Cake with Frosting

Cinnamon Zucchini Cake

Cake
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • ½ cup cinnamon applesauce
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9×9″ baking pan* with non-stick cooking spray (we like coconut cooking spray).

Beat eggs, coconut oil, cinnamon applesauce, white sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla together in a large mixing bowl.

In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Mix 1 cup flour mixture into egg mixture until combined. Repeat using one cup at a time until all of the flour mixture is used.

Fold in zucchini and stir until completely mixed in. Pour batter into prepared 9×9″ pan. Bake for 55-60 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

While the cake cools, mix together frosting ingredients and spread over the top of the cake. If desired, sprinkle the top of the cake with cinnamon and sugar. I love the cinnamon sugar grinder from Trader Joe’s for this!

*If using a 9″x13″ pan, bake for 35-40 minutes. If making into 24 cupcakes, bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and toothpick comes out clean.

Basic Tart Dough

Basic Tart Dough

This summer I’m sharing a few delicious tart recipes. But first I wanted to share my tart dough recipe used for each tart. I love how versatile and easy these tarts are. They’re the perfect summer entertaining dessert as a simple bite-sized treat.

Having the tools on hand to make tart making easier is a must! Make sure to pick up a tart shaper and a mini muffin pan to make the perfect mini tarts.

The best part about them is that they’re so versatile! I’ll be sharing lemon blueberry tarts, strawberry cream cheese tarts, and raspberry tarts.

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Basic Tart Dough

This dough is a basic tart dough recipe. Please note that you will need to chill at least 1 hour or overnight.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 22 minutes
Servings 24
Author Danielle

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 3 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar

Instructions

  1. Using a mixer, beat butter and cream cheese together until smooth. Add flour and sugar and mix until a soft dough forms. Cover and chill at least 1 hour or overnight. (I've chilled for up to three days without any issues).
  2. Shape dough into 1" balls and press into an ungreased mini muffin pan. Using a tart shaper dipped in flour, press dough to form the tart shell.
  3. Poke bottom of shells with a fork and bake at 450 for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before filling.

 What’s your favorite tart flavor?

Once you’re done making the tart dough, try these delicious tarts!

Lemon Blueberry Tarts with Mint

 

2 Ingredient Chocolate Cake with Spiced Honey Roasted Hazelnuts

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2 Ingredient Chocolate Cake with Hazelnuts

There were some flavor combos that were just meant to be together. And most of my favorite combos always revolve around chocolate. So weird, right? So when I heard I could make a 2 ingredient chocolate cake I was kind of skeptical. But totally on board!

So I picked up some Nocciolata (you can purchase it here on Amazon) that was sent over to me for review and decided to jump in and try this 2 ingredient chocolate cake. All you need is Nocciolata hazelnut spread with cocoa and milk and eggs!

The outcome was delicious. I waited for this cake to completely cool, topped it with some delicious spiced honey roasted hazelnuts and a drizzle of Golden Blossom Honey. It definitely hit the spot. [Read more…]

Someday I’ll Learn: 4 Ingredient Beer Bread

4 Ingredient Beer Bread

When my daughter came up to me last week and asked for a peanut butter sandwich – and we were out of bread – I had to get a bit creative. And that’s where this 4 Ingredient Beer Bread came from.

I’m amazed at how simple it is to make bread with 4 ingredients. But it’s totally doable. And this bread? Yeah… it’s good.

You can find the full recipe featured on Someday I’ll Learn today!

Pinterest Inspiration

Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Men Cookies

Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Cookies

While everyone was slaving away on Thanksgiving making beautiful turkeys, preparing casseroles, and baking bread, my family was baking something else… gingerbread men and women! My husband is slightly obsessed with the holidays and asked the kids if they wanted to make some soft and chewy gingerbread men to take with us to Thanksgiving dinner. You know, to get in the holiday spirit!

After they baked them up they turned the reigns over to me and had me make the royal icing and decorate the men and women. We threw in some turkeys and fall leaves (not pictured) to round out the merging of the holidays but most purists around the dinner table grabbed for the gingerbread men and women.

Now that we’ve found an awesome recipe for the cookies it’s time to start planning what recipe we’ll be using for the houses we construct!
Soft and Chewy Gingerbread cookies platter

4.88 from 8 votes
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Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Men Cookies

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar packed
  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground roasted ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/2 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

Royal Icing

  • 1/4 cup meringue powder or egg white powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar sifted
  • 3/4 cup cool water

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan set over low heat, or in the microwave, melt butter, then stir in the brown sugar, molasses, salt, and spices.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a medium-sized mixing bowl, let it cool to lukewarm, and beat in the egg.
  3. Whisk the baking powder and soda into the flour, and then stir these dry ingredients into the molasses mixture.
  4. Divide the dough in half, and wrap well. Refrigerate for 1 hour or longer.
  5. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Get out several baking sheets and line with parchment.
  6. Once the dough has chilled, take one piece of dough out of the refrigerator, and flour a clean work surface, and the dough. Roll it out as thin or thick as you like; for slightly less crisp cookies, roll it out more thickly. We go for 1/4 inch for a soft and chewy gingerbread man.
  7. Place the dough on parchment, and put a sheet of plastic wrap over it as you roll, pulling the plastic to eliminate wrinkles as necessary when rolling; this will keep dough from sticking without the need for additional flour.
  8. Cut out shapes with a cookie cutter, cutting them as close to one another as possible to minimize waste.
  9. Transfer the cookies to un-greased cookie sheets (or, if you've rolled right onto the parchment, remove the dough scraps between the cookies). Bake the cookies just until they're slightly brown around the edges 8 to 12 minutes, or until they feel firm.
  10. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for several minutes, or until they're set. Transfer them to a rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  11. Decorate the cookies with Royal Icing.

For the Royal Icing:

  1. In a stand mixer or large bowl with electric mixer, add dry ingredients. Start the mixer and slowly pour in the cool water.
  2. Mix on low speed at first, increasing to high speed over several minutes. Beat until the icing is fluffy.
  3. Keep the frosting covered with a damp towel and some plastic wrap until you are ready to use it.
  4. Divide the frosting into smaller containers and mix with food coloring for several colors.

Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Men Cookies

What’s your favorite holiday cookie?

This recipe originally appeared on this site on December 1st, 2013

Enjoying Sticky Buns and Coffee with Friends

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Sticky Buns #loveyourcup #shopOne thing I absolutely love about my friends is that I can call them up at a moments notice and invite them over for an impromptu play date. If my youngest is driving me up the wall because she’s “bored” while her brother is at school I can simply hit up my friends and tell them to bring their kiddos over for a fun morning.

And, of course, that’s the perfect time for us mamas to reconnect and enjoy each other’s company while sipping on coffee and treats. Because caffeine is a must at play dates.

With the holidays fast approaching I also always try and use these play dates to my advantage by testing out fun recipes with my friends to see if they make the cut for the holiday baking frenzy to come. This past week I had a few friends over for some homemade sticky buns I made using my favorite flavored creamer, peppermint mocha. It’s great in coffee but also makes a great addition to baked goods.

Sticky Buns ingredients #loveyourcup #shopThere’s something magical about sharing a meal with friends. Being able to sit down together, take in a few laughs, and really enjoy each others company.

Over the past few years of running my playgroup I’ve come to know these ladies quite well. So much so that I feel comfortable enough with them, and them with me, that we allow our kids to enjoy playing in the playroom or living room while we catch up. No need to hover or follow our kids every step.

It does help that the kids know our home well and know where their favorite toys to play with are. And my daughter so looks forward to these mornings filled with fun and laughter.

Sticky Buns filling and topping #loveyourcup #shop

On a recent trip to Walmart I picked up some Peppermint Mocha creamer to replace the Pumpkin Spice creamer I had just run out of. Tis the season for delicious coffee and I need my creamer!

I figured that the creamer would not only taste good in my coffee but in the sticky buns I was making as well. And I was right! These sticky buns were so delicious. They definitely hit the spot and were a huge hit with the moms and kids.

Sticky Buns mixing ingredients #loveyourcup #shop

4.84 from 6 votes
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Sticky Buns

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup plus 4 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature, plus more for muffin tins
  • 1 3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 3 tablespoons Peppermint Mocha creamer
  • 1 3/4 pounds Martha Stewart's Yeast Dough room temperature - or - 2 tubes crescent rolls, rolled out and pinch seams together

Instructions

  1. Generously grease 2 24-cup muffin tins with butter or spray. Divide yeast dough into 2 equal balls. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream 3/4 cup butter together with 3/4 cup brown sugar and the salt on medium speed. Beat until light and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add corn syrup and creamer. Mix until well combined.
  3. Divide butter-brown sugar mixture evenly between prepared cups, about 2 tablespoons per cup. Sprinkle a tablespoon of pecans into each cup.
  4. Grab one of the dough balls. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and roll into an 18-by-10-inch rectangle. Brush dough with 2 tablespoons butter and liberally sprinkle with remaining brown sugar and chopped pecans.
  5. Beginning with the long side facing you, tightly roll dough away from you into a round log; pinch the edge of the dough to seal it. Cut the dough crosswise into 1 inch pieces.
  6. Place each cross-sectional piece into prepared muffin cup and lightly cover with plastic wrap. Repeat with second dough ball Place muffin tins in warm place until buns double in size, about 45 to 60 minutes.
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  8. Once dough has doubled in size, remove plastic wrap and place on middle rack. Bake until tops are dark brown, about 35 to 40 minutes.
  9. Remove from oven and immediately invert to cooling rack set over a baking sheet. Let cool slightly before serving.

Sticky Buns with coffee #loveyourcup #shop

One thing I can always count on with these ladies is a good time. And they’ll eat pretty much anything. Even when I had to sub crescent roll dough for yeast dough in this recipe because my yeast dough was still too cold to work with!

The recipe still turned out absolutely delicious and tasted great with a nice cup of coffee. With some peppermint mocha creamer, of course.

Sticky Buns and coffee with friends #loveyourcup #shop

How do you enjoy time with friends?

Apple Cheddar Quick Bread

Apple Cheddar Quick Bread

I absolutely love a good, hearty bread with a bowl of soup when it’s cold outside. And this week it’s gotten pretty chilly! So when I stumbled upon this delicious Apple Cheddar Quick Bread recipe over at Simply Stacie I knew I needed to try it.

From it’s deliciously soft inside to the crunchy crust on the outside, this is the perfect comfort food to go alongside your favorite warm dish. And it’s so easy to throw together!

In true Danielle fashion, though, I did make a few changes to the recipe to tweak it a bit to our liking. Our version is below but I highly suggest checking out Stacie’s too! [Read more…]



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