Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites

Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites: bite-sized morsels of heaven filled with crispy, smoky bacon, sweet brown sugar and sticky, syrupy maple syrup. Only four easy ingredients and it makes a TON. Easily doubled or tripled! A must-make! Just like the original, but in BITE-SIZED portions, these Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites will be the first to go anywhere you take them! Sweet, salty, smoky and sticky two-bite morsels of heaven!

Now that the holidays are here (!!!), I bet you all are super popular and have lots of parties to attend.

I moved five years ago and forgot to thank the mailman once, so I’m just thinking my invitations got lost in the mail somewhere.

BUT, since normal people have friends (right?), I’m assuming you all have lots of commitments nowadays. And most of those require you bring some kind of appetizer or dessert to share, because that’s what normal people do, yeah? Chips & salsa’s old news, and sometimes you just don’t have time to whip up something super fancy, like a quiche or tarte tatin or whatever fancy people who read Cooks Illustrated eat.

Enter: these Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites. Easy to prepare, totally unique and the perfect balance of sweet, salty and smoky. Is there anything better!?

This is a riff off of a recipe I made a few years back – Maple Caramel Bacon Crack. It’s become a huge hit and I figured I should update it with my own Rebel twist, which is why I used mini phyllo cups in place of the crescent rolls to make perfect two-bite treats. This treat is great to bring to parties because it can easily be doubled – or tripled – if need be, but it already makes 30 (which, if you’ve had the original, may not be enough for even two people!).

And I guarantee it will be the first to disappear. Is there anyone who would deny bacon slathered in a maple caramel sauce? If so, you shouldn’t be friends with them. Unless they’re vegetarian. In which case, hi, veggie friends – I love you and don’t judge you for not swooning over swine. 🙂

To make these bad boys, simply fry up some bacon – a pound to be precise. I used whatever was on sale, but I know some people have bacon preferences so use what you like: hickory-smoked, applewood-smoked, peppered, or even turkey bacon. *The only thing I will say is you should use regular-cut bacon, not thick-cut bacon, as thick-cut pieces will be too big and heavy for the delicate phyllo cups.*

Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites: bite-sized morsels of heaven filled with crispy, smoky bacon, sweet brown sugar and sticky, syrupy maple syrup. Only four easy ingredients and it makes a TON. Easily doubled or tripled! A must-make! Fry the bacon until it’s just about done but not quite crispy yet – you want it a little more on the chewy side since it will be baking some more in the oven. After you chop it into tiny little bits, put it into the phyllo cups with some brown sugar and maple syrup. Sprinkle a little extra brown sugar on top and bake it until the phyllo and bacon are crispy and the maple caramel is bubbly and glossy.

Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites: bite-sized morsels of heaven filled with crispy, smoky bacon, sweet brown sugar and sticky, syrupy maple syrup. Only four easy ingredients and it makes a TON. Easily doubled or tripled! A must-make! Then try to resist groaning and scarfing down the whole batch. I speak from experience.

Happy Holidays!

Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites: bite-sized morsels of heaven filled with crispy, smoky bacon, sweet brown sugar and sticky, syrupy maple syrup. Only four easy ingredients and it makes a TON. Easily doubled or tripled! A must-make!

4.8 from 4 reviews
Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites
Author: 
Recipe type: Treats
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 30
 
These Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites are bite-sized bits of heaven! Only 4 ingredients and SUPER easy to make. You can easily double or triple this recipe!
Ingredients
  • 2 (15 count) pkgs frozen phyllo cups (30 total)
  • 1 lb regular-cut bacon (any flavor/smoke preference, such as peppered, hickory-smoked, maple flavored, etc, but I would recommend not using thick-cut as it will be too heavy and big for the delicate phyllo cups), cut in half cross-wise
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup maple syrup (I used pancake maple syrup, but real deal syrup will work)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment and lightly grease it with cooking spray. Place the phyllo cups onto the baking sheet and set aside briefly.
  2. Fry the bacon in batches in a large skillet, cooking until the bacon is just about done but not crispy. The bacon should be on the chewier side, as it will continue to cook more as you bake it. Drain the bacon onto a paper towel-lined plate and let cool briefly before chopping into tiny bits.
  3. Scoop a ½ tsp of brown sugar into each phyllo cup and add a small squirt of maple syrup on top. Fill past the brim of the phyllo cup with bacon, mounding it into the cup. Sprinkle with the remaining brown sugar.
  4. Bake for approx. 12-15 minutes or until the phyllo cups and bacon are crisp and the maple caramel is bubbly and caramelized. Cool for about 5 minutes before serving.

Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites: bite-sized morsels of heaven filled with crispy, smoky bacon, sweet brown sugar and sticky, syrupy maple syrup. Only four easy ingredients and it makes a TON. Easily doubled or tripled! A must-make! Sweet, salty, sticky and smoky, these bite-sized poppables are so delectable!

Maple Caramel Bacon Crack Bites: bite-sized morsels of heaven filled with crispy, smoky bacon, sweet brown sugar and sticky, syrupy maple syrup. Only four easy ingredients and it makes a TON. Easily doubled or tripled! A must-make! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Icing

These Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Icing are such a cinch to make and no one will know they started from a box! Buttery, tender muffins packed with pumpkin spice flavor and topped with a creamy maple icing. Perfect for the holidays! #ad #krusteaz

These Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Icing will be a hit at your Thanksgiving brunch table! No one will know that they started with a box of Krusteaz Pumpkin Spice Muffin Mix!

It’s hard to believe that we’re already deep into the fall season! Thanksgiving is coming, and if you’re like me, you’re already planning your menu (or if you’re an over-achiever, you’ve got your menu planned!). I get it – Thanksgiving is a major American holiday and you want everything to be perfect, look amazing and taste even better.

But I think people (myself included) often forget about Thanksgiving breakfast. We’re all so wrapped up in the perfect dinner presentation, but we have to eat breakfast too! Whether you’re brunching or eating as you fix up the turkey, breakfast is essential, even if it’s something as small (but filling) as a Pumpkin Muffin!

These Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Icing are such a cinch to make and no one will know they started from a box! Buttery, tender muffins packed with pumpkin spice flavor and topped with a creamy maple icing. Perfect for the holidays! #ad #krusteazThese Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Icing are such a fabulous option for breakfast on Thanksgiving morning. They’re hearty and loaded with pumpkin spice flavor, and the maple icing is, well, the icing on top! Fluffy, moist and tender muffins are the best kind, and Krusteaz’s Pumpkin Spice Supreme Muffin Mix makes it easy.

The best part is, you can make these the night before to free up your oven space on the day of. Store them in a basket covered with a tea towel for a pretty presentation in the morning.

These Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Icing are such a cinch to make and no one will know they started from a box! Buttery, tender muffins packed with pumpkin spice flavor and topped with a creamy maple icing. Perfect for the holidays! #ad #krusteazGET THE RECIPE to these Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Icing!

Happy Baking!

xo, Hayley

In the interest of full disclosure, I am a brand ambassador for Krusteaz. All opinions are 100% my own and I was compensated for this post. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep The Domestic Rebel running!

Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake

Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake: a buttery, moist cake filled with bright and juicy cranberries, then topped with a crunchy, melt-in-your-mouth brown sugar, cinnamon & walnut streusel crumb. So impressive, so easy! If you’re looking for a show-stopping Thanksgiving or Christmas Day brunch item, look no further! This Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake can be made in advance and offers a tender, moist cake with juicy cranberries and crunchy walnut streusel.

I cannot even believe that Thanksgiving is next week!

How did this happen? Wasn’t my birthday (January 24) a few weeks ago? I could have sworn I was just in Portland a week or so ago (April). And now red and green everything is being shoved in my face and I’m already hearing Taylor Swift renditions of Christmas carols. WAIT UP, WORLD. I’M STILL IN EARLY 2016.

So, I suppose this begs the question: What are you doing for Thanksgiving?

Every year, I beg and kick and scream to make Thanksgiving dinner because there’s something so lovely and Norman Rockwell-y about tying on an apron, chopping veggies for stuffing and basting a glorious bird all day long. Also, I’m a control freak and like to be in charge of how things are prepared. #bossy

But every year, my grandma also kicks and screams about making Thanksgiving dinner, and since she’s a grandma and has seen like, wars and stuff, I usually let her cook the dinner but insist on bringing sides… Coincidentally, all the sides I like to eat. But as usual, she always persists that she wants to make all of it but I draw the line at desserts. My grandma – bless her – is NOT a baker by any means, and ahem, I kinda sorta have a best-selling cookbook about DESSERT so it’s kinda mandatory that I bring dessert.

Even though she still buys a frozen pie. *facepalm* Where’s the wine?

So this year, as usual, I am delegated with the task of making desserts. And of course, since I am a control freak/the world’s most indecisive person, I will make no less than 4 different pies, and probably cookies, brownies/bars, and/or a cake. Because I like having options, okay!?

But since I also don’t have any other kitchen tasks and can make all my desserts ahead of time, I’m going to surprise my family (well, unless they read this) with this Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake again.

This cake is based off of my Apple Cinnamon Crumb Cake (which you absolutely NEED to make!) but made with bright, zippy cranberries and crunchy walnuts in the inch-thick brown sugar streusel, then topped with a light orange glaze.

Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake: a buttery, moist cake filled with bright and juicy cranberries, then topped with a crunchy, melt-in-your-mouth brown sugar, cinnamon & walnut streusel crumb. So impressive, so easy! It only looks complicated because it’s kinda sorta gorgeous. But I assure you, this couldn’t be simpler: you literally let the pan do the work for you! And the star of the show today is the springform pan. It’s essential for this recipe, but if you don’t have one, a tall-sided 9″ round cake pan should work.

Now get to feasting!

Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake: a buttery, moist cake filled with bright and juicy cranberries, then topped with a crunchy, melt-in-your-mouth brown sugar, cinnamon & walnut streusel crumb. So impressive, so easy!

Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake
Author: 
Recipe type: Cakes/Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
This Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake is so impressive and surprisingly easy to make! A real showstopper for the holidays.
Ingredients
  • FOR CRUMB:
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 & ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • FOR CAKE:
  • ¾ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 & ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • FOR GLAZE:
  • 1 & ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp orange juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease a 9" round sprinform pan with cooking spray. Place a 9" parchment round in the bottom of the pan, then grease the parchment. Set aside.
  2. For the cake batter: In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light, about 2 minutes. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in the vanilla extract and sour cream; beat well. Lastly, add in the flour, baking powder and salt and mix until combined. Fold in the cranberries. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and set aside.
  3. To make the streusel/crumb: In a large bowl, toss together the crumb ingredients until moistened and large crumbs form. Liberally drop crumb mixture over the cake batter, covering it completely. There will seem like a LOT of crumb, but use all of it!
  4. Bake for approx. 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist, not wet, crumbs. Cool completely.
  5. Just before serving, whisk together the glaze ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over the cake, then release the cake from the pan and cut into slices.

Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake: a buttery, moist cake filled with bright and juicy cranberries, then topped with a crunchy, melt-in-your-mouth brown sugar, cinnamon & walnut streusel crumb. So impressive, so easy! Juicy, bright cranberries. Crunchy, buttery walnut streusel. Is there anything better?!

Cranberry Walnut Crumb Cake: a buttery, moist cake filled with bright and juicy cranberries, then topped with a crunchy, melt-in-your-mouth brown sugar, cinnamon & walnut streusel crumb. So impressive, so easy! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

3-Ingredient Buttercream Frosting Fudge

This 3-Ingredient Buttercream Frosting Fudge is AWESOME! Smooth, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth DELICIOUS and tastes JUST like homemade buttercream icing! Super easy and makes great gifts!Attention all frosting fans! This Buttercream Frosting Fudge tastes just like buttercream frosting but in FUDGE form! Three-ingredients, made in minutes & so easy!

Are you a frosting person, or a vessel person?

I say ‘vessel person’ because frosting is on everything these days: cookies, cakes & cupcakes, whoopie pies, brownies…

I’m gonna be a brat right now, but why can’t we just have the vessel without frosting? Sometimes I just want a fudgy brownie with no frills. Or a sugar cookie that’s gone nudist. Or a cupcake that’s au naturel. Is that too much to ask?!

But, I know I am in the minority. Like, the minority of minorities. Because everyone loves frosting, right?!

My Mom could eat just a batch of buttercream frosting without a vessel needed – give her a spoon and the frosting and she’s happy. At kiddie birthday parties, I’d always scrape all of the frosting off of my cake and eat the plain cake, leaving that pile of sugar sludge to sit unwanted on the side until my Mom swooped in and scraped it up for herself.

So if you are like my Mom and could take an IV with a can of buttercream, you will thoroughly enjoy this Buttercream Frosting Fudge. It tastes just like buttercream frosting because it’s made with buttercream. AND! there’s only 3 ingredients, 4 if you count the sprinkles (but in my world, sprinkles don’t count as an ingredient because I put them on everything & basically carry a bottle in my purse for emergencies).

The frosting is super simple: melt a 12-ounce bag of white chocolate chips until smooth, then fold in a can of buttercream frosting – for this, I used vanilla (but of course). Fold it into the white chocolate with a splash of vanilla extract and spread the shebang into a foil-lined pan. Sprinkle the top liberally with your favorite sprinkles – I used Christmas-y ones here! – and let it chill in the fridge for a couple hours.

This 3-Ingredient Buttercream Frosting Fudge is AWESOME! Smooth, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth DELICIOUS and tastes JUST like homemade buttercream icing! Super easy and makes great gifts!Easy. As. That.

Frosting people: this one’s for you!

This 3-Ingredient Buttercream Frosting Fudge is AWESOME! Smooth, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth DELICIOUS and tastes JUST like homemade buttercream icing! Super easy and makes great gifts!

5.0 from 1 reviews
3-Ingredient Buttercream Frosting Fudge
Author: 
Recipe type: Candy
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
 
This Buttercream Frosting Fudge is outstanding! It tastes JUST like buttercream frosting but in chewy, melt-in-your-mouth FUDGE form!!
Ingredients
  • 1 (12 oz) bag white chocolate chips
  • 1-2 Tbsp heavy cream (may not need it)
  • 1 can (16 oz) vanilla buttercream frosting
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Sprinkles, if using
Instructions
  1. Line an 8x8" square pan with foil, extending the sides of the foil over the edges of the pan. Spray the foil with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a large microwavable bowl, melt the white chocolate chips at 15-second increments on HIGH power until melted and smooth. If the mixture starts to get really thick and pasty, add in the cream. Do not over-heat. Alternatively, using the double-boiler method, place a pot of simmering water on medium-low heat and place a glass bowl on top, taking care to ensure the bowl does not touch the water. Melt the white chocolate over the double boiler until smooth, then proceed with the recipe as stated.
  3. Fold in the vanilla extract and can of buttercream frosting until blended. Mixture will be very thick. Spread into the prepared pan, smoothing out the top. Top liberally with sprinkles.
  4. Refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours or until firm before cutting into squares.

This 3-Ingredient Buttercream Frosting Fudge is AWESOME! Smooth, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth DELICIOUS and tastes JUST like homemade buttercream icing! Super easy and makes great gifts!Smooth, creamy, chewy and melt-in-your-mouth delicious! This fudge will be the star of the show this holiday season!

This 3-Ingredient Buttercream Frosting Fudge is AWESOME! Smooth, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth DELICIOUS and tastes JUST like homemade buttercream icing! Super easy and makes great gifts! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

Easy Bourbon Balls

Easy Bourbon Balls: bite-sized truffles packed with rich and smooth bourbon flavor, crunchy pecans, and sweet cocoa. No-Bake, simple to make and would be wonderful for Christmas or holiday gifts! Everyone’s heard of rum balls, but for a different change of flavor, try these Easy Bourbon Balls! Tender, soft & chewy truffles made with Kentucky bourbon, cocoa, pecans and crushed cookies. Simple and no-bake!

Ever since becoming a food blogger, I have realized there are so many different Christmas cookie and candy recipes.

In my family, we made those refrigerated Pillsbury cookies with the little images printed on them. Or sometimes we made peanut butter blossoms. My grandma occasionally made Pecan Snowballs. But other than that, we never had fudge, fruit-cake (are we really missing out, though?), peppermint anything, Kahlua anything, homemade toffee, divinity, etc. Nothing.

The closest we came to getting fancy candies were found in those little cardboard box of chocolates. Not even Whitman’s or See’s brand… but like, dollar store truffles. Which, if you ever wondered, are so cheap tasting that they’re basically brown-flavor.

So this whole world of homemade candies, slice & bake cookies, and festively sprinkled and flavored goodies – all brand new to me. And I am loving every second of it. Because there’s only so many times you can make peanut butter blossoms, am I right?

To be fair, I wasn’t sure what to expect with this recipe. It’s a cross between a truffle and a cookie pop since it’s made with cocoa, but also made with crushed cookies. And it is extremely bourbon-y, so if you’re sensitive to alcohol or bourbon isn’t your fave, I’d definitely avoid this recipe.

But if you get crunk on bourbon, HONEY – you gotta try these. There is no mistaking that rich, amber bourbon flavor.

Easy Bourbon Balls: bite-sized truffles packed with rich and smooth bourbon flavor, crunchy pecans, and sweet cocoa. No-Bake, simple to make and would be wonderful for Christmas or holiday gifts! Of course, rum balls tend to be more widely known during this time of year, but I thought bourbon sounded even better than rum. Bourbon seems more Christmasy, and rum seems more like I need to have booked a Caribbean vacation last week. But, if you enjoy rum instead, I’m sure it’s interchangeable here.

Can we cheers to that?!

Easy Bourbon Balls: bite-sized truffles packed with rich and smooth bourbon flavor, crunchy pecans, and sweet cocoa. No-Bake, simple to make and would be wonderful for Christmas or holiday gifts! *adapted from My Recipes/Southern Living 

Easy Bourbon Balls
Author: 
Recipe type: Candy
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24-26
 
These Easy Bourbon Balls are a wonderful no-bake treat for the holiday season! Similar to rum balls but made with rich, amber-colored bourbon instead.
Ingredients
  • 1 (11 oz) box Nilla Wafers, finely crushed
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar, plus ⅔ cup
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • ½ cup high quality bourbon
  • 3 Tbsp corn syrup
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, combine the finely crushed Nilla Wafer cookies with the finely chopped pecans, ¾ cup of powdered sugar and the cocoa powder. Stir the corn syrup into the bourbon until blended; add to the Nilla Wafer mixture.
  2. Using a spatula, stir the mixture together until moistened and combined. Using a cookie scoop, scoop Tablespoon-sized balls of the mixture and roll them in your palms gently to smooth out. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining balls.
  3. Using the remaining ⅔ cup powdered sugar, coat each bourbon ball in powdered sugar. Chill for about 20-30 minutes or until set before serving. Can be stored in the fridge, covered, or at room temperature, covered.

Easy Bourbon Balls: bite-sized truffles packed with rich and smooth bourbon flavor, crunchy pecans, and sweet cocoa. No-Bake, simple to make and would be wonderful for Christmas or holiday gifts! Crunchy, chewy, soft and packed with great texture from the chopped pecans and crushed cookies, these flavorful Bourbon Balls will surely be the first to go this holiday season!

Easy Bourbon Balls: bite-sized truffles packed with rich and smooth bourbon flavor, crunchy pecans, and sweet cocoa. No-Bake, simple to make and would be wonderful for Christmas or holiday gifts!

Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

Salted Caramel Macaroons

Salted Caramel Macaroons: tender, chewy, sweet & gooey coconut macaroon cookies flavored with toasted coconut and salted caramel. Super easy, fast, no mixer-required and perfect for gift-giving! Coconut fans will love these Salted Caramel Macaroons! Tender, gooey and bursting with toasted coconut and salted caramel flavors. So easy to make, too!

I am a huge coconut lover. If there’s coconut in it, chances are I will flip for it.

I also am a lover of coconut macaroons. They are, quite possibly, one of the easiest cookies to prepare. You don’t need to chill them, you don’t need to let them rest, you don’t need to massage them gently, put cucumbers over their eyes and whisper “it’s going to be okay” to them. You seriously just mix the ingredients all at once in one single bowl, portion them out, bake and… eat!

So why don’t I make macaroons more often? BECAUSE I AM LAME, THAT’S WHY. But seriously, I think it’s because I maybe subconsciously think that because they’re so easy, like maybe the recipe is a cop-out? I don’t want y’all to think I’m pulling a fast one on ya or anything.

But truthfully, I need to make more iterations of coconut macaroons because they will definitely be the star of your holiday cookie trays. So, ya know, you can finally be the one with the best-tasting cookies at Milly’s annual cookie party this year. (Watch your back, Milly).

And another thing – the idea of these macaroons came to me suddenly when I realized you can (and should!) use dulce de leche in place of the sweetened condensed milk in my macaroon recipe. WHY HAVEN’T I THOUGHT OF THIS BEFORE?! To be frank, it’s kinda genius.

Salted Caramel Macaroons: tender, chewy, sweet & gooey coconut macaroon cookies flavored with toasted coconut and salted caramel. Super easy, fast, no mixer-required and perfect for gift-giving! If you can’t find dulce de leche, Borden/Eagle Brand now makes CARAMEL sweetened condensed milk, so use that! They also make a chocolate condensed milk, but for today’s recipe, salted caramel steals the show.

Enjoy!

Salted Caramel Macaroons: tender, chewy, sweet & gooey coconut macaroon cookies flavored with toasted coconut and salted caramel. Super easy, fast, no mixer-required and perfect for gift-giving!

Salted Caramel Macaroons
Author: 
Recipe type: Cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15-18
 
These Salted Caramel Macaroons are a simple, stunning cookie that takes no time at all! No chilling, no mixer required, one bowl. Easy peasy! If you cannot find dulce de leche, you can find caramel-flavored sweetened condensed milk that can be used in its place.
Ingredients
  • 5 & ½ cups shredded coconut
  • ⅔ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • 1 (13 oz) can dulce de leche (or caramel-flavored sweetened condensed milk)
  • Sea salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the coconut, flour, vanilla and almond extracts and dulce de leche. Stir together with a rubber spatula until combined and moistened.
  3. Drop heaping Tablespoonfuls of the coconut mixture onto the baking sheets, about 1" apart. Using wet fingers, gently push any wonky edges into the cookie so it's perfectly round; this will prevent those wonky edges from browning too quickly or burning. Sprinkle the tops of the cookies with sea salt.
  4. Bake for approx. 12-15 minutes or until golden and lightly toasted. Allow to cool to room temperature before serving.

Salted Caramel Macaroons: tender, chewy, sweet & gooey coconut macaroon cookies flavored with toasted coconut and salted caramel. Super easy, fast, no mixer-required and perfect for gift-giving! Pure, unadulterated caramel flavor is what you’ll get in these tender, buttery, gooey and chewy macaroons!

Salted Caramel Macaroons: tender, chewy, sweet & gooey coconut macaroon cookies flavored with toasted coconut and salted caramel. Super easy, fast, no mixer-required and perfect for gift-giving! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Cranberry Orange Pound Cake with Cream Cheese Glaze

This Cranberry Orange Pound Cake is fabulous for the holidays! Moist, buttery pound cake studded with juicy, bright cranberries and zesty orange and topped with a smooth cream cheese glaze. Easy and impressive! This Cranberry Orange Pound Cake will be a new favorite this holiday season! Moist, tender and packed with bright & zesty orange and cranberry flavors with a rich orange-flavored cream cheese glaze.

I realized that I have a blatant lack of cranberry recipes on my site.

Sorry to all those cranberry people in the world. I’ve let ya down.

But! I’m changing that as we speak with this fabulous Cranberry Orange Pound Cake recipe. It is kinda sorta special in that it’s studded with little cranberry jewels and sprinkled with orange zest flecks that make it super flavorful.

And it’s great for the holidays, because is there anything more holiday-y than cranberries? I think not.

But can I be kinda honest with you?

Up until making this recipe this week, I had never purchased, nor tasted, a real cranberry before.

I KNOW.

That is because my family grew up on eating that gelatinous can-shaped cranberry loaf and has been pretty loyal to canned cranberries since the dawn of time. One time, I accidentally bought whole berry canned cranberry sauce and they practically revolted. So making homemade orange-scented gingered cranberry sauce from Epicurious? NOT HAPPENING.

First of all, I don’t think my family could handle an exotic cranberry sauce recipe. Adding ginger or miso or whatever? I think the only ‘ginger’ my grandma knows is the one who danced with Fred Astaire.

Second of all, I tried a raw cranberry right out of the bag and… well… cranberries are kinda nasty. It was like, really exceptionally tart and bitter almost. Maybe I used bad cranberries? (Side note: ‘bad cranberries’? What are they, gang members?) Anyway, I was assured by the internet that my bruise meant I had a flesh-eating virus and that cranberries are kinda supposed to taste gross before you add copious amounts of sugar. So, good news!

This Cranberry Orange Pound Cake is fabulous for the holidays! Moist, buttery pound cake studded with juicy, bright cranberries and zesty orange and topped with a smooth cream cheese glaze. Easy and impressive! Anyway, this recipe is a cinch to make and is scratch-made, for all you scratch-cooking lovers out there. It’s so moist and fluffy and packed with buttery flavor. The cranberry jewels add a nice pop of color, polka-dotting the pale orange colored cake. And the orange-flavored cream cheese glaze really pulls it all together.

This Cranberry Orange Pound Cake is fabulous for the holidays! Moist, buttery pound cake studded with juicy, bright cranberries and zesty orange and topped with a smooth cream cheese glaze. Easy and impressive! Overall, I think this needs to be made in your house. Stat.

This Cranberry Orange Pound Cake is fabulous for the holidays! Moist, buttery pound cake studded with juicy, bright cranberries and zesty orange and topped with a smooth cream cheese glaze. Easy and impressive! *adapted slightly from Taste of Home 

5.0 from 1 reviews
Cranberry Orange Pound Cake with Cream Cheese Glaze
Author: 
Recipe type: Cakes/Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10-12
 
This Cranberry Orange Pound Cake with Cream Cheese Glaze is so moist, fluffy and tender, studded with bright and zesty cranberry and orange flavors.
Ingredients
  • FOR CAKE:
  • 1 & ½ cups (3 sticks) butter, softened
  • 2 & ¾ cups sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ⅛ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream
  • Zest of one orange
  • Juice of one orange (about ¼ cup)
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries (thawed and rinsed if using frozen)
  • FOR CREAM CHEESE GLAZE:
  • 4 oz (1/2 pkg) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 Tbsp orange juice
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally - and I mean liberally! - grease a Bundt pan with cooking spray, preferably the kind with flour in it. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together on medium speed for 5 minutes or until very pale in color and fluffy. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in the vanilla, flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg and beat to combine. Lastly, add in the sour cream, orange zest and fresh orange juice; beat to combine. Fold in the cranberries.
  3. Spread the mixture into the prepared Bundt pan and bake for approx. 60-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist, not wet, crumbs. Cool in the pan for about 20 minutes before gently inverting to a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. Once the cake has cooled, make your glaze. In a medium bowl, whip together the cream cheese, orange juice, vanilla and powdered sugar with an electric mixer until smooth, about 1 minute. Drizzle the glaze over the top of the cake.

This Cranberry Orange Pound Cake is fabulous for the holidays! Moist, buttery pound cake studded with juicy, bright cranberries and zesty orange and topped with a smooth cream cheese glaze. Easy and impressive! This cake will be such a stunner on any Thanksgiving or Christmas dessert table! You could always sprinkle sugared cranberries or candied orange peels on the top for an even prettier look.

This Cranberry Orange Pound Cake is fabulous for the holidays! Moist, buttery pound cake studded with juicy, bright cranberries and zesty orange and topped with a smooth cream cheese glaze. Easy and impressive! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars

Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars are a fun twist on the classic butter cake recipe! Easy, impressive and packed with rum, nutmeg and eggnog flavors in a gooey, chewy bar! Perfect for Christmas! If you love eggnog, these Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars are for YOU! Loaded with creamy eggnog and rum flavors in one gooey, chewy bar recipe!

Every year, this happens.

Every year, I remember incorrectly. I think I like eggnog. I get excited when I see it in stores, I inevitably buy a carton and when I take a gulp I realize I don’t really like eggnog all that much.

Sometimes, yes – sometimes I think a small glass sounds really good and festive. Sometimes I’ll get eggnog coffee creamer and add a splash to my coffee so I can feel even more Christmas-y. But glugging an entire carton by myself? Sorry, eggnog lovers – I can’t do it. #foodbloggerfail

BUT, because I’m a loving, caring, giving kind of person, I am willing to sacrifice my fairweather feelings toward eggnog and make eggnog treats for you. Because I love ya and I know a lot of you can chug the stuff no problem. I’m here for you.

Enter: these Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars. They are PACKED with eggnog flavor, so this is not for other fairweather eggnog people. They are for die-hard, hardcore eggnog people. (Side note: ‘eggnog people’ would make an awesome band name. Just saying.)

It’s the recipe for these Gooey Butter Cake Bars but tweaked to have the ultimate eggnog flavor punch. I started with a white cake mix base which you press into the pan. Then I whipped up the eggnog gooey butter part of the equation which consists of cream cheese, eggs, powdered sugar, a little bit of rum and vanilla extracts, eggnog and butter. I mean… can you even handle the awesomeness?

Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars are a fun twist on the classic butter cake recipe! Easy, impressive and packed with rum, nutmeg and eggnog flavors in a gooey, chewy bar! Perfect for Christmas! Pour the gooey filling over the base and bake it until golden and just about set. Let it cool – I know, it’s excruciating – and then cut it into bars.

Easy, fabulous, gooey. These are for you, my eggnog people!

Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars are a fun twist on the classic butter cake recipe! Easy, impressive and packed with rum, nutmeg and eggnog flavors in a gooey, chewy bar! Perfect for Christmas!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars
Author: 
Recipe type: Bars
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15-18
 
These Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars are for all those eggnog lovers out there! Gooey, chewy bars packed with creamy eggnog flavors. A great holiday treat!
Ingredients
  • FOR CRUST:
  • 1 pkg white cake mix
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • FOR EGGNOG FILLING:
  • 1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ tsp rum extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 (16 oz) box powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup eggnog
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • Additional powdered sugar for dusting, optional
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 13x9" baking pan with foil, extending the sides of the foil over the edges of the pan. Spray the foil liberally with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, melted butter and egg until a thick dough forms. Press the dough into the prepared pan in an even layer. Set aside briefly.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the cream cheese until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in the rum and vanilla extracts, the nutmeg and the entire box of powdered sugar, beating well until smooth. Lastly, beat in the eggnog and melted butter until smooth and combined.
  4. Pour the filling mixture evenly over the bar base. Bake for approx. 37-45 minutes or until golden brown on top and mostly set. It's okay if the bars jiggle a little when moved, but they should not be sloshing around in the pan. The bars will continue to set as they cool. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely, about 1 hour.
  5. Refrigerate the bars to set for about 2 hours. Cut into squares and dust with additional powdered sugar before serving, if using.

Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars are a fun twist on the classic butter cake recipe! Easy, impressive and packed with rum, nutmeg and eggnog flavors in a gooey, chewy bar! Perfect for Christmas! These bars are perfect for anyone who wants a taste of the holiday season! A fun twist to a classic recipe 🙂

Eggnog Gooey Butter Bars are a fun twist on the classic butter cake recipe! Easy, impressive and packed with rum, nutmeg and eggnog flavors in a gooey, chewy bar! Perfect for Christmas! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies

Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies are soft, buttery, tender cookies flavored with warm, sweet, aromatic maple flavors and iced with an irresistible maple icing! So easy to make and so flavorful! Maple lovers will delight in these soft Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies! Made with sweet, rich maple syrup and iced with a golden brown maple frosting, they’re guaranteed to win over any crowd!

So my sister just got back from visiting Vancouver, BC Canada.

And I am still jealous.

I wanted to go exploring with her because I have a weird obsession with Canada and Canadians. They just have this je ne sais quoi that I can’t quite pinpoint. Maybe it’s because they actually know what “je ne sais quoi” means and could entertain my half-hearted French in conversation.

But alas, I have this book deadline looming and wanted to take advantage of natural light while we still have it, so I skipped this trip. After the book’s done though, you bet your passport I’m headed to the land of all things maple syrup.

I begged my sister to bring me back something utterly Canadian, so she brought me back a Canadian flag from their dollar store. That was… not really what I meant.

She also – at the encouragement of her wise, beautiful, smart, hilarious older sister – brought back Canadian candy which was so delightful because it’s like getting candy from Mars. (The planet, not the company). I mean honestly, it could have been a Snickers bar but with a fancy name and French subtitles and I probably would have gobbled it up because of its uniqueness.

It was so fun trying all the new foreign candy, like Wunderbars, which are kind of like Butterfingers but with caramel. I was kinda sorta in heaven. And their Oh Henry with – get this – REESE Peanut Butter. Not Reese’s, but just Reese. Like Reese’s more mature older brother, he dropped the apostrophe ‘s’ and decided to be cool. I respect it, and like an idiot sucker, ate it up.

She also brought home a Kinder Egg, which may or may not be legal in this country. Which, come on, America. Get your stuff together. We have WARNING LABELS on shampoo that tell people not to eat it. If we could just stop being so freakin’ dumb and stop eating everything like we’re two-year-olds, maybe we could have nice things for a change.

Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies are soft, buttery, tender cookies flavored with warm, sweet, aromatic maple flavors and iced with an irresistible maple icing! So easy to make and so flavorful! Anyway, when visit Canada someday soon, I am bringing back a trough of maple syrup because they’re known for the stuff. Her Canadian rendezvous inspired me to channel my inner wannabe Canadian and make these Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies. They are kinda sorta amazing and remind me of fall. Warm, aromatic, soft and tender with that sweet, rich, golden maple syrup flavor and an irresistible maple icing.

Hey, Canada! Let me see your bountiful glory and I’ll bring you ALL THE COOKIES, k?

Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies are soft, buttery, tender cookies flavored with warm, sweet, aromatic maple flavors and iced with an irresistible maple icing! So easy to make and so flavorful! *adapted from the Best Old-Fashioned Sugar Cookies recipe

5.0 from 1 reviews
Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies
Author: 
Recipe type: Cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24-26
 
These Soft Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies are so buttery, sweet and tender and bursting with rich, golden maple syrup flavor. Great for any maple lover!
Ingredients
  • FOR COOKIES:
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened
  • 1 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp maple extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cream of tarter
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 cups + 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • FOR ICING:
  • 1 & ½ cups powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp maple extract
  • 2-4 Tbsp hot water
  • Chocolate sprinkles, optional but recommended
Instructions
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter, oil and sugar until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. Add in the powdered sugar, vanilla and maple extracts and beat to combine. Beat in the eggs, baking soda, cream of tarter, salt and flour until a soft dough forms. Cover and refrigerate for at LEAST 2 hours, up to overnight. Chilling is MANDATORY.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment or silicone liners. Drop rounded Tablespoonfuls of dough 2" apart on the baking sheets. Bake for approx. 9-12 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking time to ensure even cooking. Cool on the sheets completely.
  3. To make the frosting: In a medium bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, maple extract and two (2) Tablespoonfuls of hot water. If mixture is too thick, add in an additional Tablespoon of hot water at a time, stirring well until smooth and glossy.
  4. Spoon a teaspoon or two of icing onto each cookie and spread it out. Sprinkle with chocolate sprinkles if using. Otherwise, allow frosting to harden on each cookie, about 15 minutes.

Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies are soft, buttery, tender cookies flavored with warm, sweet, aromatic maple flavors and iced with an irresistible maple icing! So easy to make and so flavorful! Buttery, soft, plush and tender with that sweet, aromatic maple flavor… These cookies were devoured by my family and I know yours will love them, too!

Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies are soft, buttery, tender cookies flavored with warm, sweet, aromatic maple flavors and iced with an irresistible maple icing! So easy to make and so flavorful! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

The Best Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting

This is the BEST Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting I've EVER had. Moist, fluffy, tender and soft chocolate-flavored red velvet cake with a traditional cooked vanilla frosting and white chocolate. This easy cake is perfect for any red velvet cake lover!This truly is the Best Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting! Moist, soft and fluffy with a vanilla cooked frosting that’s traditional to Southern red velvet cakes, this cake is a must-make!

So I’m done with online dating. It is the worst.

If you met your significant other online, or if your brother’s second cousin’s friend’s sister married a dude from eHarmony, that is AWESOME and congratulations! I do not want to know how many duds you had to weed through before you found The One. Or, at least, Someone For Now.

I have been on four different sites and all have yielded poor, substandard results. I had better hopes of dating the tomatoes that I matched with on OkCupid (I’m serious. I matched with tomatoes) but alas, I thought I was too good for that fruit and moved on, only to be severely disappointed down the line.

So I’m saying it once here and now, and there is nothing you can or will say that will change my mind: I am done with online dating. Like, forever forever, for real for real. I cannot handle one more “hey gorgeous, u wanna chat?” message. I feel like I will actually burst into flames if I am the recipient of one more lousy pick-up line.

If I don’t meet my One in the line at the grocery store, or through mutual friends (once I, ya know, get friends), or reconnect with my One who was once in my high school math class 10 years ago, I suppose I’ll just be alone. And that’s okay. Because it’s just too dang hard to find someone who meets all of my Must-Haves, and I never check off any of the boxes for their Must-Haves, like camping. Dude, why does everyone like camping so much? Is there something about it that I’m missing here, because it seems like literally all you do is get eaten alive by bugs, sleep on the ground and do your business in a hole. Also, I have a forever fear of mountain lions. And being dirty. And eating hot dogs for every meal.

What I’m saying is, if you like camping, go camping every summer, have awesome memories of camping as a kid, and need to camp with someone, I am not your girl. If you enjoy hotels with award-winning spas attached to them, Jacuzzi tubs with lots of bubbly jets and a restaurant with nary a hot dog in sight, hello, I’m single.

Also: I promise I’m not high-maintenance. I barely wear makeup, I take a shower in 10 minutes flat and never ask if I look fat in something because the answer is always ‘yes’. So really, camping just cramps my style.

ANYWAY, can we talk about food, aka, my One True Love?

I used to dislike red velvet cake, if we’re being frank. I thought it was either a really poor chocolate cake or a really bland vanilla cake and just didn’t get the hype for it… until I tried this recipe. No joke.

This is the BEST Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting I've EVER had. Moist, fluffy, tender and soft chocolate-flavored red velvet cake with a traditional cooked vanilla frosting and white chocolate. This easy cake is perfect for any red velvet cake lover!Once I sampled the cake batter, I couldn’t wait to try the finished product. This is chocolaty but not too much so, sweet but not cloying and utterly perfect. And the TEXTURE is INCREDIBLE. Moist, fluffy, soft, everything you want in a cake crumb.

This is the BEST Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting I've EVER had. Moist, fluffy, tender and soft chocolate-flavored red velvet cake with a traditional cooked vanilla frosting and white chocolate. This easy cake is perfect for any red velvet cake lover!And okay, this boiled frosting? I know the term “boiled” conjures up gross images like eggs and hairy potatoes, but I promise y’all, this frosting is where it’s at. It’s the traditional red velvet cake frosting and is incredibly scrumptious. I’ll never frost a cake with cream cheese again.

Even if you’ve found The One, I promise he or she won’t be bothered that you give this cake a try!

This is the BEST Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting I've EVER had. Moist, fluffy, tender and soft chocolate-flavored red velvet cake with a traditional cooked vanilla frosting and white chocolate. This easy cake is perfect for any red velvet cake lover!*adapted from Big Book of Cakes cookbook

5.0 from 1 reviews
The Best Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting
Author: 
Recipe type: Cakes/Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15-18
 
This Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting truly is the BEST red velvet cake I've EVER had - even better than a famous bakery's! Moist, fluffy and tender with supreme chocolate flavor and the vanilla boiled icing tops it off!
Ingredients
  • FOR CAKE:
  • 1 & ½ cups vegetable oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 (1 oz) bottle red food coloring
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 & ½ cups sugar
  • 2 & ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • FOR FROSTING:
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 & ½ cups milk
  • 1 & ½ cups sugar
  • 1 & ½ cups butter, softened
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • White chocolate curls or shavings for garnish, optional
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease a 9x13" rectangular baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine all of the cake ingredients with an electric mixer on low speed for about 30 seconds, until just combined. Scrape down the bowl and beat for an additional 2 minutes or until completely combined and smooth. Pour into the pan and smooth out the top.
  3. Bake for approx. 25-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist, not wet, crumbs. Cool completely.
  4. To make the frosting: In a medium saucepan, mix the flour and the milk with a wire whisk until smooth. Cook over medium heat until mixture becomes very thick, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Remove from the heat and cool for 10-15 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat the sugar and butter together until light and fluffy. Add in the flour mixture gradually, mixing well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract until smooth.
  6. Frost the cake evenly with the frosting. Top with white chocolate curls or shavings, if using. Cover cake and store in the fridge to set for about 2 hours before cutting into slices.

This is the BEST Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting I've EVER had. Moist, fluffy, tender and soft chocolate-flavored red velvet cake with a traditional cooked vanilla frosting and white chocolate. This easy cake is perfect for any red velvet cake lover!Moist, fluffy, tender and soft with that vanilla cooked frosting on top… this cake is HEAVEN!!

This is the BEST Red Velvet Cake with Boiled Frosting I've EVER had. Moist, fluffy, tender and soft chocolate-flavored red velvet cake with a traditional cooked vanilla frosting and white chocolate. This easy cake is perfect for any red velvet cake lover!Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

 

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