Reese’s Peanut Butter Chocolate Gooey Bars

These Reese's Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Bars are outrageous! A chocolate brownie bottom topped with Reese's peanut butter cups and a glorious chocolate peanut butter gooey layer! An EASY recipe that's sure to impress! If you’re looking for something ultra gooey, these Reese’s Peanut Butter Chocolate Gooey Bars are IT.

So a couple of days ago, I went to Disneyland with my sister. We flew down to LA (thankfully it was only an hour flight!) and I picked up my usual travel requirement: an US Weekly magazine. I know, I know, I should be reading Russian literature or something far more thought-provoking and advanced, but I cannot help it. I NEED TO KNOW WHAT THE STARS ARE DOING.

Anyway, US Weekly has a column called “25 things you didn’t know about me” so I figured I would do that in this post because A) I’m currently experiencing writer’s block and B) because apparently I think you guys care about 25 random facts about me. Just humor me, okay? And leave in the comments some random facts about YOU! I love random facts. Like a lot.

  1. My hair has been every color of the rainbow. Even the ugly colors. My favorite hair color, however, is my current platinum blonde.
  2. I refuse to eat pork chops. I loathe them.
  3. I’m obsessed with potato chips. My favorite are Doritos.
  4. I’ve only been stung by a bee once. It was in the second grade. I called home and my dad came to pick me up. We then went to the dump, for reasons unknown, where ironically there were a ton of bees.
  5. One of my dreams is to open up a dog sanctuary/rescue.
  6. I have two rescue dogs – Mannie, a 3-legged Border Collie, and Jack, a Yorkie/Norfolk Terrier. I love them both dearly!
  7. I am deathly afraid of heights. Like, even walking on the second floor of the mall makes me a little queasy.
  8. I was an English literature major.
  9. My alcoholic drink of choice is a Midori Sour.
  10. My non-alcoholic drink of choice is unsweetened black iced tea.
  11. I have over twenty tattoos. All but one are on my legs.
  12. My least favorite fruit is blackberries.
  13. I am pretty much the textbook definition of an Aquarius.
  14. If I could live anywhere, I’d choose to live on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.
  15. And if I could have any car in the world, I’d choose to keep my Honda Civic. I love her!
  16. My favorite color is bubblegum pink… but I typically wear only black.
  17. Cupcakes are probably my least favorite dessert. This is probably because I’m not a huge frosting fan!
  18. I am obsessed with magazines. Sometimes I’ll bring old already-read issues with me to doctor’s/dentist’s offices so I can switch them out with issues I haven’t read. My favorites (which is honestly like picking your favorite kid) are Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Real Simple, and Woman’s Day.
  19. I only wear dresses or leggings. I have one pair of jeans and I never wear them.
  20. I don’t typically eat red meat. And if it weren’t for turkey and seafood, I would probably become a vegetarian.
  21. Soup is one of my favorite meals. I love pretty much all kinds – split pea, chicken tortilla, chicken & dumplings, corn chowder, French onion…
  22. Betsey Johnson is my favorite designer. I met her once and she is incredibly sweet and fun in person. We’re basically BFFs.
  23. When I was a little girl, I wanted to become an author. Now my dream is coming true and I cannot wait to hold my cookbook in my hands! August 2016!!
  24. Gerbera daisies and roses are my favorite flowers.
  25. And soft Red Vines are my favorite candy!!

These Reese's Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Bars are outrageous! A chocolate brownie bottom topped with Reese's peanut butter cups and a glorious chocolate peanut butter gooey layer! An EASY recipe that's sure to impress! See? Aren’t you glad you know all this about me? *sarcasm* I promise I’ll be back with my regular shenanigans next time. BUT (!) please promise me you’ll make these Gooey Bars? They are incredible.

These Reese's Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Bars are outrageous! A chocolate brownie bottom topped with Reese's peanut butter cups and a glorious chocolate peanut butter gooey layer! An EASY recipe that's sure to impress!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Reese's Peanut Butter Chocolate Gooey Bars
Author: 
Recipe type: Bars
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15
 
These Reese's Peanut Butter Chocolate Gooey Bars are perfect for any chocolate-peanut butter lover! Rich, gooey, chewy and loaded with peanut butter flavor, they're the ultimate!
Ingredients
  • 1 box chocolate fudge cake mix
  • 2 sticks butter, divided & melted
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup Reese's Peanut Butter Chocolate Spread (similar to peanut butter or Nutella, and found where the peanut butter is in the grocery store)
  • 1 (8 oz) pkg Reese's Minis
  • 1 (16 oz) box powdered sugar
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, one (1) stick of melted butter and one (1) egg, stirring with a rubber spatula until combined and thick. Press the mixture into the prepared pan in an even layer. Sprinkle the layer with the Reese's Minis.
  3. Wipe out the bowl and add in the cream cheese and Reese's chocolate spread. Using an electric mixer, beat for about 30 seconds - 1 minute or until combined. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in the remaining stick of melted butter, beating well. Lastly, add in the powdered sugar all at once, beating until incorporated.
  4. Pour the mixture over the crust layer. The pan will weigh about one ton. Pop the pan in the oven and bake for approx. 35-40 minutes or until the center is just about set and only slightly jiggly. It's okay if it jiggles a little bit; do NOT over bake! Allow the bars to cool completely, then refrigerate for about 2 hours or until chilled before cutting into squares.
  5. Dust the tops with powdered sugar, if desired. Store leftovers in the fridge.

These Reese's Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Bars are outrageous! A chocolate brownie bottom topped with Reese's peanut butter cups and a glorious chocolate peanut butter gooey layer! An EASY recipe that's sure to impress! Gooey, chewy, and loaded with chocolate and peanut butter flavor, these Reese’s Gooey Bars are outrageously awesome!

These Reese's Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Bars are outrageous! A chocolate brownie bottom topped with Reese's peanut butter cups and a glorious chocolate peanut butter gooey layer! An EASY recipe that's sure to impress! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

Brown Butter Espresso M&M Blondies

These Brown Butter Espresso M&M's Blondies are incredible! Such amazing flavor, rich and deep with espresso and vanilla. Sea salt on top and M&M's add a nice crunch. You'll love this easy recipe! So I just did my taxes.

Actually, I had an accountant do my taxes because even double-digit multiplication proves to be too much for me.

And I’m sad to report that I owe money this year.

WHYYY does the IRS cramp my style?

It’s like they don’t want me to spend my hard earned money on clothes, purses and deep tissue massages. The IRS – the land of the unfashionable stiff necked people.

Anyway, it’s fine that I owe. I mean, I’d rather owe and pay it than not pay it and be a criminal by the time I’m 26. Tax evasion isn’t a good look. Well, unless you’re Theresa from the Real Housewives of New Jersey, who only served a hot minute in prison and now has her own TV show and book deal. So I guess tax evasion isn’t so bad?

Don’t worry. I’m only joking. Kind of.

Something I won’t be evading is this pan of Brown Butter Espresso M&M Blondies. They are spectacular, people. Sweet, salty, and bursting with rich, warm, aromatic vanilla and espresso powder. To make ’em extra special and gourmet, I sprinkled coarse sea salt on top just before baking to give them a wonderful crunch and salty bite. You could totally omit this if you’d like – but who denies a little extra flavor, am I right?

First y’all need to brown your butter. This is crucial if you want to call these Brown Butter Blondies. Browning your butter imparts such amazing flavor into these blondies- adding a wonderful warmth and nuttiness. Just be sure to watch your butter like a hawk, because it can go from gorgeously amber to hideously burnt in a matter of seconds. Trust.

Brown your butter all nice like, then let it cool for a sec. Once it’s cooled down a little, stir in your brown sugar. I used dark brown sugar because I wanted a really deep flavor, but light works too! Then stir in your eggs, a healthy helping of vanilla extract, some baking soda & flour, and of course – your espresso powder!

Espresso powder can be found near the coffee in most grocery stores. I use a brand called Medaglia D’Oro which has wonderful flavor. In this recipe I added two Tablespoons – but you can add more or less to suit your taste. I found that two Tablespoons was just right – not super coffee-like, but had a nice jolt.

And lastly – duh. M&M’s! I used mini M&M’s because they cover more surface area and I personally don’t like large chunks to chew through. I’ve actually never been a super fan of chunky food. Call me crazy, I already know it.

Throw on the sea salt – be liberal! Liberate yoself. Bake it until it’s nice and golden and then EAT. Please, for the love of Pete, EAT.

If the IRS accepted these blondies as a form of payment, honey, they’d be paying me!

These Brown Butter Espresso M&M's Blondies are incredible! Such amazing flavor, rich and deep with espresso and vanilla. Sea salt on top and M&M's add a nice crunch. You'll love this easy recipe!

Brown Butter Espresso M&M Blondies
Author: 
Recipe type: Bars
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15
 
These Brown Butter Espresso M&M Blondies are incredible! Rich, with wonderful deep espresso flavor, gooey chocolate M&M's and sea salt on top. A perfect sweet & salty treat!
Ingredients
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbsp espresso powder (more or less to suit your taste)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 & ½ cups miniature M&M's candies
  • 1-2 Tbsp sea salt, for sprinkling on top (more or less to suit your salty preferences)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally spray a 13x9" baking pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once melted, stir it around occasionally, watching it constantly, as it deepens and darkens in color. The mixture will bubble up, then start to look foamy, but keep stirring and checking it until it's nutty and fragrant and a deep amber color. Once achieved, immediately remove it from the heat and cool it for about 10 minutes.
  3. Stir in the brown sugar until combined, then the eggs and vanilla. Stir in the espresso powder, followed by the baking soda and flour until a soft batter has formed. Stir in the M&M's candies.
  4. Spread the batter into the prepared pan and sprinkle evenly with the sea salt. Bake for approx. 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool completely before serving.

These Brown Butter Espresso M&M's Blondies are incredible! Such amazing flavor, rich and deep with espresso and vanilla. Sea salt on top and M&M's add a nice crunch. You'll love this easy recipe! These are a sweet and salty lover’s DREAM come true! I ate mine with a big cup of coffee and I highly recommend you do the same!

These Brown Butter Espresso M&M's Blondies are incredible! Such amazing flavor, rich and deep with espresso and vanilla. Sea salt on top and M&M's add a nice crunch. You'll love this easy recipe! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Salted Cadbury Egg Blondies

These Salted Cadbury Egg Blondies are a rich, sweet and salty dessert that's sure to please! This easy recipe comes together in minutes and has delightful pockets of rich Cadbury chocolate swirled throughout. Perfect for Easter! Can I be real with you for a sec?

I’ve tried to like Cadbury Eggs – I really have. I buy them every year, thinking that this year will be different. That, and the adorable rabbit on the package. Seriously, they could put that rabbit on a pack of cigarettes and I’d buy them – and I don’t even smoke.

But honestly? I don’t much care for the chocolate. I know, I know – don’t shoot me, please.

I can get down on that crisp candy coating. Dear lawwwd, give me a bag of candy coating shards and I will polish it off faster than you can say ‘Easter bunny.’ But the whole chocolate part? Not. So. Much.

This is probably because I grew up eating the crappiest chocolate imaginable – like the stuff the dollar store sells which is probably just brown-dyed chemicals and not chocolate at all. And then there’s Cadbury, in all its regal British glory, and little miss boxed mac & cheese over here doesn’t know what to do with the finer foods in life, so I just make up excuses about the chocolate to candy coating ratio to hide the fact that I’m a heathen.

It’s simple math, really.

Just like when I took a food & wine class in college. Okay, so it was just an awesome excuse to get loaded at 9am on a Tuesday, but don’t judge me. The class would be tasting the wine and defining the notes and aromatics and I just sat there with wine in my mouth like, “yup, tastes grape-y, like grape soda without the fizz.” Meanwhile, everyone silently judged me because no fancy person drinks grape soda. Let’s just get real – grape soda is like, the lowest on the soda totem pole. And defining a fine cabernet as “grape soda-y” was like announcing to the class that I’m poor and unrefined. And like grape soda.

BUT, I know there are classy folk out there in the world who enjoy Cadbury Eggs – and who find cabernet to be lovely and not at all soda-like. So this recipe is for YOU.

These Salted Cadbury Egg Blondies are, in a word, divine. Even I enjoyed them, probably because they were buried among the most decadent blondie alive.

You start with the blondie base, which is pretty much all 2’s. Two sticks of butter, two cups of brown sugar, two eggs, 2 cups flour… then add a few 1’s: 1 Tablespoon of vanilla, 1 teaspoon of baking soda, and 1 & 1/2 cups of chopped Cadbury Eggs. When I say ‘Cadbury Eggs’, I’m talking about those crisp miniature candy-coated eggs, not the creme-filled eggs. Just FYI.

Bake it all up with a healthy sprinkling of sea salt on top for fantastic flavor and crunch. Cut ’em into bars and serve them immediately – everyone who eats one will be impressed with your good taste. I promise.

This recipe is heathen-approved.

These Salted Cadbury Egg Blondies are a rich, sweet and salty dessert that's sure to please! This easy recipe comes together in minutes and has delightful pockets of rich Cadbury chocolate swirled throughout. Perfect for Easter!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Salted Cadbury Egg Blondies
Author: 
Recipe type: Blondies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15
 
These Salted Cadbury Egg Blondies feature the delicious, eponymous candy in these perfectly salted, brown sugary blondies!
Ingredients
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 & ½ cups chopped Cadbury Eggs (I used a mixture of milk chocolate eggs and white chocolate eggs)
  • 1 Tbsp sea salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease a 13x9" baking pan with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large saucepot, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Let stand for about 5 minutes.
  3. Whisk in the brown sugar until combined, then whisk in the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla. Stir in the baking soda and flour until a soft batter has formed. Fold in the chopped Cadbury egg candies.
  4. Spread the mixture into the prepared pan and sprinkle evenly with the sea salt. Bake for approx. 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist, not wet, crumbs. Cool completely before cutting into bars.

These Salted Cadbury Egg Blondies are a rich, sweet and salty dessert that's sure to please! This easy recipe comes together in minutes and has delightful pockets of rich Cadbury chocolate swirled throughout. Perfect for Easter! Sweet, salty, caramel-y and chocolaty, these blondies will rock your socks off!

Be sure to pin this recipe to your favorite Easter board on Pinterest!

These Salted Cadbury Egg Blondies are a rich, sweet and salty dessert that's sure to please! This easy recipe comes together in minutes and has delightful pockets of rich Cadbury chocolate swirled throughout. Perfect for Easter!

Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Peeps Brownie Bombs

These Peeps Brownie Bombs are a delectable treat for any marshmallow lover! Fudgy baked brownie surrounds a sugary, soft Peep candy that's coated in rich white chocolate. Perfect for Easter and so easy to make! If you know me, you know that my biggest pet peeve has to be when people don’t have their headlights on when it’s rainy or foggy.

It seriously drives. me. bonkers.

And I always wish that a friendly police officer will drive by and pull the offenders over, giving them the biggest ticket imaginable. Or maybe send them to traffic jail for being a danger to society and an annoyance to me.

Some girls want diamonds. I want this.

But then I was driving a couple days ago during a particularly blustery day, and I saw so many people without their lights on that I felt like my head would explode. Just when I thought I would die of obnoxiousness, I saw a cop! Finally, my dream would come true! But then I realized the cop didn’t even have his headlights on.

It was then that I realized there is no helping humanity. We’re all doomed.

Anyway, I had to come home to console myself with one of my favorite Easter candies, Peeps. I love Peeps and find them to be such a classic holiday candy. Some people have a strong dislike for them, and that’s okay – more for me. Personally, I like them when they’re super fresh and plush, and when they’re stale and a little crunchier. However, this recipe for Peeps Brownie Bombs uses fresh Peeps right outta the package.

If you’ve ever wondered how delicious fudgy, rich brownies are with puffy, sugary marshmallows, you don’t need to wonder anymore! These are the best of both worlds, coated in creamy white chocolate and sprinkles. And they are such a wonderful way to dress up this Easter candy.

I highly recommend making them – you won’t be disappointed!

These Peeps Brownie Bombs are a delectable treat for any marshmallow lover! Fudgy baked brownie surrounds a sugary, soft Peep candy that's coated in rich white chocolate. Perfect for Easter and so easy to make!

4.5 from 2 reviews
Peeps Brownie Bombs
Author: 
Recipe type: Brownie Bombs
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
These PEEPS Brownie Bombs are filled with plush, puffy, sugary Peeps candy inside of a fudgy baked brownie. So delicious!
Ingredients
  • 1 (13x9") pan fudge brownies, baked, cooled and cut into 12 equal pieces
  • 12 Peeps candies (any color, flavor, or shape - I used chicks)
  • 1 pkg vanilla CandiQuik
  • Sprinkles
Instructions
  1. Line a baking sheet with foil; set aside.
  2. Take a piece of brownie and flatten it in the palm of your hand. Wrap the brownie around the Peep candy, pinching the brownie and rolling it in your hand to completely enclose the Peep within the brownie. Place on the baking sheet - repeat with remaining Peeps and brownies.
  3. Freeze the brownie bombs for about 30 minutes to one hour or until solid.
  4. Melt the CandiQuik according to package directions. Drop a brownie bomb into the melted CandiQuik with a fork, completely submerging the brownie bomb into the chocolate. Remove the brownie bomb from the chocolate, allowing excess to drip off. Return to the baking sheet and immediately top with sprinkles. Allow chocolate to harden before serving.

These Peeps Brownie Bombs are a delectable treat for any marshmallow lover! Fudgy baked brownie surrounds a sugary, soft Peep candy that's coated in rich white chocolate. Perfect for Easter and so easy to make! Soft, chewy and ultra fudgy, these brownie bombs are so awesome! They taste great with the classic Peeps, but would be lovely with any of the flavored Peeps too!

These Peeps Brownie Bombs are a delectable treat for any marshmallow lover! Fudgy baked brownie surrounds a sugary, soft Peep candy that's coated in rich white chocolate. Perfect for Easter and so easy to make! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Reese’s Egg Brownie Bombs

These Reese's Egg Brownie Bombs are perfect for Easter! Filled with those delightful Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs, they're wrapped in a fudgy brownie and coated in rich milk chocolate. So easy and delicious! I have a surprisingly low pain tolerance.

This is weird considering I have 20+ tattoos, some of which are in spots that no one should be tattooed because ouch (Here’s looking at you, knee). 

That, and I take shots like a pro. In fact, I have a weird thing where I love shots. Knowing I’ll be somewhat protected from bubonic plague, leprosy, the flu, and whatever else they protect me from makes me weirdly happy. So much so that when our doctor’s office announces that it’s flu-shot time, I will giddily wait in line to be poked and prodded. Color me excited.

But when it comes to everything else? I’m a mega-wimp.

So much so, that I complain about nearly every ailment that strikes me. Headache? Hurts so bad. Stubbed phalange? Wincing in pain. 

And yet, there are some things that truly hurt me mucho – like my debilitating sciatica. Dude – the worst. Or my IBS. Child, you best stay outta my way when my guts start swelling because I’ll roll all over the floor like an injured animal moaning in pain.

And then there was yesterday morning. I stood up from the computer to do a stretch – the one where you grab your hands behind your back and slowly raise them. I do this stretch multiple times a day without so much of a worry, and yesterday I felt the same until pop! Something happened and I literally collapsed to the floor and began writhing in pain.

My mom proceeds to step over me and was like “okay, gotta go, see ya!” while I’m struggling to breathe. My sister snaps, “stretch!!” but I’m rendered absolutely useless as I gasp for breath and twitch. Okay, maybe they were a little more sympathetic, I don’t know, as I was trying not to DIE.

And that’s precisely when I realized I couldn’t move my neck to one side. So I called my massage therapist and thankfully they had an open morning slot. Homegirl worked my neck, head and shoulders so good that when I stood up from my hour-long retreat into wonderland that I could actually move my head again. It was utter bliss. I’ll never take for granted full-head mobility again.

ANYWAY. Since I narrowly survived stretching, I decided to celebrate with some brownie bombs. These are Reese’s Egg Brownie Bombs which have those delectable, highly coveted Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs inside of them. Everyone loves the eggs because they have a better filling ratio, and I couldn’t agree more.

But when they’re stuffed inside of a fudgy baked brownie? HONEY CHILD, you need them. They’re so supremely fudgy and soft with that irresistible peanut butter cup filling. Plus, how festive are they for Easter?!

Make them. Love them. And don’t stretch afterwards.

These Reese's Egg Brownie Bombs are perfect for Easter! Filled with those delightful Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs, they're wrapped in a fudgy brownie and coated in rich milk chocolate. So easy and delicious!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Reese's Egg Brownie Bombs
Author: 
Recipe type: Brownie Bombs
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
These Reese's Peanut Butter Egg Brownie Bombs feature those delightful seasonal peanut butter cup eggs inside each fudgy baked brownie bomb! You'll love this festive twist!
Ingredients
  • 12 Reese's Eggs, unwrapped
  • 1 (13x9") pan fudge brownies, baked, cooled and cut into 12 equal pieces (edges trimmed off)
  • 1 pkg chocolate CandiQuik
  • 2 squares vanilla CandiQuik
  • 2 Tbsp creamy peanut butter
Instructions
  1. Line a baking sheet with foil. Set aside.
  2. Take a fudge brownie square and gently flatten it with the palm of your hand. Wrap the brownie (tacky side touching the peanut butter egg) around the peanut butter egg, pinching and rolling the brownie in your hand to completely enclose the egg inside. Form into an egg shape and place onto the foil-lined sheet. Repeat with remaining eggs.
  3. Freeze eggs for about 30 minutes or until solid. Once frozen, melt your chocolate CandiQuik according to package directions.
  4. Dip brownie bombs into chocolate with a fork, coating completely. Remove the brownie bombs from the chocolate, allowing excess to drip off. Return to the baking sheet and repeat with remaining eggs.
  5. Once chocolate has set, melt the vanilla CandiQuik until smooth. Stir in the peanut butter. Drizzle the peanut butter mixture over the eggs. Allow the peanut butter mixture to set, about 10 minutes, before serving.
  6. NOTE: for easy drizzling, pour the melted peanut butter mixture into a plastic sandwich bag, seal out the air, snip off a tip and drizzle.

These Reese's Egg Brownie Bombs are perfect for Easter! Filled with those delightful Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs, they're wrapped in a fudgy brownie and coated in rich milk chocolate. So easy and delicious! So supremely rich and decadent, everyone will love these! And how fun would it be to wrap them up in cellophane and hide them on your Easter egg hunt?!

These Reese's Egg Brownie Bombs are perfect for Easter! Filled with those delightful Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs, they're wrapped in a fudgy brownie and coated in rich milk chocolate. So easy and delicious! Have a delicious day!

xo, Hayley

 

Homemade Milk Jam {Dulce de Leche}

This Homemade Dulce de Leche (or Milk Jam) is SO EASY and made with only ONE ingredient! Rich, buttery, creamy and gooey, it works in a variety of recipes or on its own as a gift! I’m so excited to bring you this recipe today for Homemade Milk Jam, aka Dulce de Leche!

So remember when I made my Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits and spoke about my experience with Best Food Facts for the TASTE15 program? Well Best Food Facts ended up taking me to Bentonville, Arkansas and Chicago last year to learn more about food and where it comes from.

The best part of the trip (besides visiting some really cool cities) was making new friends with some other bloggers and farm bloggers. I had no idea all the work that goes into farming, be it dairy farming or corn farming. One farmer even grew canola oil, which, stupid me, I had no idea you could farm.

Since I work with dairy ALL the time, I took the time to interview one of the farm bloggers on our trip, Krista Stauffer. Krista runs a dairy farm with her husband in Washington and knows everything there is to know about all things dairy. Can you imagine how delicious and fresh their milk must be? I asked her if she’d ship me my own cow but she was like “you’re crazy and I’m putting you on a cow-buying list for suspicious people.” So it was a no-go.

ANYWAY. Krista answered a lot of questions for me about the process of milking a cow and what happens after milking the cows, which I found so interesting. Krista says, “After the cow is milked, the milk is stored in a stainless steel tank where it is immediately cooled. The milk truck arrives, takes a milk sample to be tested later for quality, components and antibiotics. The milk is loaded on the truck to be transported to the processing facility. At the plant, the entire tanker of milk is tested for antibiotics. At this point any milk with a positive test would require all the milk to be disposed of. All milk that passes the test, is unloaded at the plant. It is then filtered & pasteurized. It depends on the processing plant as well as the milk from the farm which products it is made into. For example, milk with a higher butterfat could become cottage cheese, buttermilk, etc.”

Krista and her family ship all of their milk to the Northwest Dairy Association, also known as Darigold. I became excited because I’ll sometimes buy Darigold butter! Knowing I may be eating a product made with milk from Krista’s farm is so cool!

And since today’s recipe used sweetened condensed milk, I figured we’d all want to know what the process of making sweetened condensed milk was. Krista and Best Food Facts’ resident nutritionist Sarah Downs explain: “Sweetened condensed milk, also known as condensed milk is created when some water is evaporated from the milk and sugar is added until a 9:11 (nearly half) ratio of sugar to milk is reached. The sugar added to sweetened condensed milk of course give it that sweet and gooey awesomeness but also helps to extend the shelf life.” That thick, sugary, gooey consistency is perfect for making magic bars, which I have a ton of recipes for on my blog, and what makes it one of my favorite ingredients!

BUT, don’t confuse sweetened condensed milk with evaporated milk. Sarah says they’re very different (and they are!) For one, there’s a consistency difference. Evaporated milk has a thinner, runnier consistency much like skim milk. Sweetened condensed milk is thick, almost like a syrup or gravy. According to Sarah, “both are forms of concentrated milk in which 60% of water is removed. The major difference is the sugar content. Sweetened condensed milk (as the name implies) is always sweetened and evaporated milk is unsweet.” Evaporated milk is great for pumpkin pie and fudge!

And probably the most important thing I asked Krista: Chocolate or regular milk? Krista says she enjoys regular milk with warm cookies, and chocolate milk with dinner. I think I like this girl 🙂

So now that we know all about dairy and sweetened condensed milk, it’s high time I explained to you that this homemade milk jam is made exclusively with sweetened condensed milk. That’s it. ONE ingredient. You probably don’t believe me, but you should!

This Homemade Dulce de Leche (or Milk Jam) is SO EASY and made with only ONE ingredient! Rich, buttery, creamy and gooey, it works in a variety of recipes or on its own as a gift! And by the way, wondering why I’m calling it “milk jam”? Well because it is! ‘Dulce de Leche’ and ‘Confiture de Lait’ both translate to ‘sugar of milk’, and milk jam/dulce de leche/confiture de lait all are made by simmering milk and sugar together. Instead of making it with whole milk and sugar and boiling it, I took a shortcut route and made it using sweetened condensed milk. Easy peasy! And so delish!

I meaaaaaaan…

This Homemade Dulce de Leche (or Milk Jam) is SO EASY and made with only ONE ingredient! Rich, buttery, creamy and gooey, it works in a variety of recipes or on its own as a gift!

4.5 from 2 reviews
Homemade Milk Jam {Dulce de Leche}
Author: 
Recipe type: Candy
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
This Homemade Milk Jam (Dulce de Leche) is DELICIOUS. Thick, creamy, and utterly perfect - and made with only ONE ingredient!
Ingredients
  • 2 cans (14 oz each) sweetened condensed milk
  • 4 (4 oz) mason jars
Instructions
  1. Open up the cans of sweetened condensed milk and pour the contents evenly among the four mason jars. Seal the lids on all the jars.
  2. Place the mason jars into a large slow cooker and cover completely with hot water, making sure there's at least an inch of water covering the tops of the mason jars. Cook on LOW for 10-11 hours (I cooked mine for 11 for deeper flavor/color).
  3. CAREFULLY remove the jars with tongs, as they will be scalding hot. Allow to cool and dry on a dish towel, about 2 hours. Rust may have formed on the tops of the mason jars during their bath; simply wipe it off. Store milk jam in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.

This Homemade Dulce de Leche (or Milk Jam) is SO EASY and made with only ONE ingredient! Rich, buttery, creamy and gooey, it works in a variety of recipes or on its own as a gift! Rich, deep, buttery, gooey goodness. This tastes AMAZING on top of ice cream!

For more info about Krista Stauffer, be sure to visit her blog: The Farmer’s Wifee. And for more info on Best Food Facts, be sure to visit their website.

Want more Dulce de Leche goodness? Check out these recipes!

These Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Bars are a sweet and salty lover's dream come true! You'll love this easy, foolproof cheesecake recipe!Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Bars

DULCE DE LECHE BARSDulce de Leche Chocolate Gooey Bars

This Homemade Dulce de Leche (or Milk Jam) is SO EASY and made with only ONE ingredient! Rich, buttery, creamy and gooey, it works in a variety of recipes or on its own as a gift!

Have a super sweet day!!

xo, Hayley

In the interest of full disclosure, I was a brand ambassador for Best Food Facts in their TASTE 15 program. I was sponsored and compensated to write this post. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

XXL Monster Peanut Butter Cup Cookie

This XXL Monster Peanut Butter Cup Cookie is easy - thanks to a secret time-saving ingredient! Buttery, chewy and LOADED with peanut butter cups, it's perfect for pleasing a crowd! I get cookie cravings at least twice a week.

They’re one of my favorite things to whip up, but sometimes I really loathe the fact that I have to (impatiently) wait for the dough to chill, which is the case for my classic chocolate chip cookies.

But thankfully for me, Krusteaz has a huge line-up of cookie mixes that are all oh-so delicious and don’t require any additional time chilling, contemplating life, or whatever else most cookie doughs must do before going in the oven.

And as a part of the Krusteaz Bakers Dozen, I’m super excited to bring y’all this recipe today! It’s a GIANT Monster Peanut Butter Cup Cookie and it’s freakin’ fantastic.

If you don’t know, monster cookies typically have M&M’s and assorted chocolate chips in them, but this cookie is boasting with chopped pecans, white chocolate peanut butter cups, and chocolate chips in an oatmeal cookie base. It starts with Krusteaz’s Brown Sugar Oatmeal Cookie Mix, which is probably one of my favorite mixes from their line. It produces a chewy, buttery cookie filled with oats and that warm brown sugar flavor. Amazing!!

And when stuffed to the gills with peanut butter cups, crunchy pecans and gooey chocolate chips, it’s sure to be a mega crowd-pleaser!

BTW – I’m totally making this cookie to serve during the Big Game since it effortlessly feeds a crowd… and because sweets are a must when watching a nail-biting game of football 🙂

This XXL Monster Peanut Butter Cup Cookie is easy - thanks to a secret time-saving ingredient! Buttery, chewy and LOADED with peanut butter cups, it's perfect for pleasing a crowd! Want the recipe? CLICK HERE!!

Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Box of Chocolates Brownie Bombs

These Box of Chocolates Brownie Bombs are so delicious and EASY to make! You're just four ingredients away from these super fudgy, ultra chocolaty wonders!It’s no secret that I’ve gained some weight over the years.

And while I’d love to have a body like Gigi Hadid, I know I won’t ever look like that, so I’m okay with how I look. Except when I accidentally surprise myself with selfie mode on my phone’s camera and my face looks like a potato.

But in years past, when I was skinnier and more outgoing, I used to get picked up ALL the time. I couldn’t even go grocery shopping at the butt-crack of dawn without having the Coca Cola stock boy hitting me up while I awkwardly bought Diet Pepsi. (Don’t ask – my dad drinks that crap. I’m a Coke Zero girl all the way).

Now I find myself being left alone all the time… and I love it. I can finally go shopping in peace without people badgering me all the live long day.

It’s like my fatness is a force field that prevents me from being accosted anywhere, radiating leave-me-alone vibes to boys and men everywhere.

This also probably has to do with the fact that when I was slimmer, I also did my full makeup for my 6am grocery trips and dressed cute. Nowadays, you basically have to threaten me with a knife to get my joggers off and real pants put on. And makeup? Honey, I haven’t touched my Urban Decay palette in about 3 months.

So basically, I’m the opposite of sexy. And you know what? I’m totally okay with that.

Because even without makeup, even with 100 extra pounds on my frame, and even while wearing leggings and sweatshirts, I still have an awesome personality, a great sense of humor, creativity that seeps from every pore, and a cookbook in the works. Does Gigi Hadid even have that? Well, probably, but there’s room for the both of us 🙂

ANYHOO. Let’s talk about the fact that Valentine’s Day is coming up in a month, basically. Are you ready for it?! I will likely spend the duration of the day binge-watching Criminal Minds and wishing Dr. Spencer Reid was here to ignite my imagination and tell me a plethora of fun facts about Valentine’s Day, so I clearly have no plans… except for maybe force-feeding myself these Box of Chocolates Brownie Bombs.

The idea came to me when I noticed all the heart-shaped boxes of chocolates at my local Target, and I realized I could stuff these inside of my famous, signature brownie bombs. It’s so easy, and totally comes together quickly. Plus, chocolate boxes are out. Brownie bombs are in. Get with it!!

These Box of Chocolates Brownie Bombs are so delicious and EASY to make! You're just four ingredients away from these super fudgy, ultra chocolaty wonders!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Box of Chocolates Brownie Bombs
Author: 
Recipe type: Brownie Bombs
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15
 
These Box of Chocolates Brownie Bombs are loaded with chocolate and SO EASY to make!
Ingredients
  • 1 box (about 15 count) of assorted chocolates, or your favorite chocolate candies
  • 1 (13x9") baking pan fudge brownies, baked, cooled and cut into 15 equal pieces (edges removed)
  • 1 pkg chocolate CandiQuik
  • 1 square vanilla CandiQuik
Instructions
  1. Line a baking sheet with foil and set aside. Take a cut square of brownie and gently flatten it with the heel and palm of your hand. Wrap it around one of the chocolates until it covers it completely, and roll it in your hands to form a ball. Place the ball on the baking sheet and freeze for about 30 minutes or until firm.
  2. Once bombs are firm, melt your chocolate CandiQuik according to package directions. Dip each brownie bomb in the chocolate, coating completely and allowing excess chocolate to drip off. Return to the baking sheet and repeat with remaining bombs. Once chocolate has set, melt the vanilla CandiQuik and place it in a ziploc bag. Seal out the air, snip off a corner and drizzle the white chocolate over the bombs. Allow to set.

These Box of Chocolates Brownie Bombs are so delicious and EASY to make! You're just four ingredients away from these super fudgy, ultra chocolaty wonders!You could also make these no-bake brownie bombs by using premade or store-bought brownies or brownie bites! Proceed with the recipe as normal.

Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

No Thermometer Needed Easy Toffee

This Easy Toffee is SO SIMPLE and is made entirely WITHOUT a candy thermometer! Crunchy, sweet, buttery and decadent, it's great to give as gifts too! I am SO EXCITED about this recipe today!

If you’re anything like me, candy thermometers kinda freak you out. Honey, I get you. I’m not a fan either. They’re too official and scary and cold and hard and heartless. (Can you tell I loathe them?) So if I can avoid using one at all costs, I’m on board.

But making candy at home often requires them, and toffee is usually no exception. However, this recipe is completely made with trust, love, and good old-fashioned perfect timing. It’s made in ten minutes – five to boil the mixture, and five to let it sit before spreading the chocolate – and then it just needs a couple hours in the fridge to set.

It starts with butter – two sticks – and 1 & 1/2 cups of brown sugar. Simply bring the mixture to a boil and boil, stirring constantly, for five minutes precisely. Pour the mixture into a greased and foil-lined baking pan and top with chocolate chips. Throw that sucker into the microwave (without turning the microwave on) and let it sit undisturbed for five minutes – this will help melt the chocolate. Spread the chocolate into an even layer, and top with whatever you like – I’ve topped mine with Heath chocolate toffee bits, but this would be great with chopped almonds or pecans.

Then simply let it set in the fridge for a couple hours before snapping it into pieces. It’s really as simple as that. No thermometers, no tricks, no jokes. Five minutes boiling, five minutes sitting, a couple hours setting. Done and done!

Now who wants some?!

This Easy Toffee is SO SIMPLE and is made entirely WITHOUT a candy thermometer! Crunchy, sweet, buttery and decadent, it's great to give as gifts too!

No Thermometer Needed Easy Toffee
Author: 
Recipe type: Candy
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
This Easy Toffee is a delectable holiday treat that's made without a candy thermometer! So simple, fast and foolproof.
Ingredients
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) butter (I used unsalted)
  • 1 & ½ cups brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • About ⅔ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • About ½ cup Heath milk chocolate toffee bits (or chopped nuts - whichever you prefer)
Instructions
  1. Line an 8 or 9-inch square pan with foil, allowing the edges of the foil to hang over the pan. Grease the foil lightly with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large saucepan, bring the butter and brown sugar together over medium heat, stirring to help melt the butter. Bring the mixture to a boil, and stirring constantly, boil the mixture for exactly five minutes. Mixture will be thicker and caramel colored.
  3. Pour the toffee into the prepared pan. Immediately sprinkle with the semi-sweet chocolate chips and place the pan in the microwave so it can sit undisturbed for five minutes. Remove from oven and spread the chocolate into an even layer; immediately top with the toffee bits or nuts, if using. Allow toffee to come to room temperature before placing in the fridge to set for about an hour or two. Break into pieces.

This Easy Toffee is SO SIMPLE and is made entirely WITHOUT a candy thermometer! Crunchy, sweet, buttery and decadent, it's great to give as gifts too! My family and I could not stop eating this delectable, decadent, crunchy toffee. I still wish we had leftovers!

Want more toffee goodness? Check out these other recipes!

Peanut Butter ToffeeSalted Peanut Butter Toffee

Toffee Tiramisu BrowniesToffee Tiramisu Brookies

Sticky Toffee Pudding CookiesSticky Toffee Pudding Cookies

Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Pumpkin Kiss Cookie Cups

These Pumpkin Kiss Cookie Cups are so simple and foolproof! Simply bake up oatmeal cookies in muffin tins and pop in a Hershey's Pumpkin Spice Kiss for a delectable seasonal treat! It’s finally starting to feel like fall here in Sacramento!

I’ve got my fingers crossed that there aren’t any more blazing 90-degree days in our near future, and that Mother Nature is making way for plenty of crisp fall days, cooler afternoons and chilly evenings. And lots of leaves changing colors, because nothing is more quintessential fall than the changing of the leaves!

That, and Halloween candy. Oh, how I love thee.

We finally got around to decorating for Halloween last week, and I’m pretty impressed with our assortment of decorations. Last year, I was inspired by clowns since WHO ACTUALLY LIKES CLOWNS and I decorated our front yard like a circus. I hung a scary clown ghost in the tree by a rope, and built two life-size clowns out of old costumes, newspaper and styrofoam wig forms with clown wigs and masks on.

We have a little enclave by our front door that isn’t super visible from the street and I placed a clown there on our bench, just chillin’ without a care in the world, smiling in his creepy clown mask. We named him Otis after a long-standing family tradition of building a dummy on Halloween and hanging him from the tree or staging him somewhere in the yard. Rumor has it that my dad used to throw Otis into the street in front of moving cars when he was younger. I can’t imagine the looks on people’s faces seeing a dummy made of newspaper in the street.

Anyway, it became slightly disconcerting when I’d come home at nighttime and see a clown hanging in the shadows of my porch, so I’ve taken to saying hello to him every time he catches me off guard. And since my family is also put off by the lifeless clown chillin’ on our porch bench, they too have taken to saying hello to Otis as they enter or exit the house.

The UPS man, though… he just tosses our packages on the porch now 🙂

What about you? Do you decorate cute or creepy for Halloween?

Let’s go back to talking about Halloween candy. One of my favorite seasonal treats are the Pumpkin Spice Hershey Kisses. They’re so creamy and perfectly spiced, and taste just like a smooth-as-silk pumpkin pie. Plus, I love the cream centers! These candies are the inspiration for today’s delectable cookie cups.

First, you start with your cookie cup base: it’s a box of Krusteaz Brown Sugar Oatmeal Cookie mix. Bake it up in your mini muffin tin, then make an indent in them with a wooden spoon handle. Let ’em sit for a couple minutes, then pop in a Hershey’s Kiss for the final touch. Similar to peanut butter blossom cookies, these cookie cups feature the soft and chewy cookie topped with a delectably smooth Kiss on top.

In other words, irresistible!

These Pumpkin Kiss Cookie Cups are so simple and foolproof! Simply bake up oatmeal cookies in muffin tins and pop in a Hershey's Pumpkin Spice Kiss for a delectable seasonal treat!

4.0 from 1 reviews
Pumpkin Kiss Cookie Cups
Author: 
Recipe type: Cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 20
 
These Pumpkin Kiss Cookie Cups are so delicious and easy!
Ingredients
  • 1 box Brown Sugar Oatmeal Cookie Mix (like by Krusteaz)
  • ½ cup butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • About 20 Hershey's Pumpkin Spice Kisses, unwrapped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease a 24-cavity miniature muffin tin with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the cookie mix, butter and egg until a soft dough forms. Drop rounded Tablespoonfuls of dough into each cavity. You should end up with about 20 cookie cups total.
  3. Bake the cookie cups for approx. 10-12 minutes or until the tops are set and the edges appear slightly crispy. Remove from the oven and make an indentation in the center with the handle of a wooden spoon. Let sit for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Once cool enough to handle, pop in a Hershey Pumpkin Spice Kiss into the center of each. Allow the cookie cups to cool completely before gently running a knife around the edge to pop them out and serve.

These Pumpkin Kiss Cookie Cups are so simple and foolproof! Simply bake up oatmeal cookies in muffin tins and pop in a Hershey's Pumpkin Spice Kiss for a delectable seasonal treat! Simple, delicious and seasonally satisfying, these cookie cups are the perfect fall treat!

Can’t find the Brown Sugar Oatmeal cookie mix? No fear! Substitute peanut butter, chocolate chip, or oatmeal chocolate chip cookie dough in place of the brown sugar oatmeal. Or, use your own homemade oatmeal cookie dough recipe!

Have a sweet day!

xo, Hayley

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