Perfect Cheesecake Bars

These rich and creamy Perfect Cheesecake Bars are truly the BEST and EASIEST cheesecake bars you'll make! They turn out perfect every time!Something terribly tragic recently happened. It shook me to my very core.

My oven died.

One day I was minding my own damn business, making spaghetti and getting ready to put some garlic bread in the oven when bam – dead. Kaput. Gone.

It was cold and lifeless. No spark. No light. Just darkness.

And since we already tossed the garlic bread packaging and ran out of gallon-size baggies, we wasted garlic bread. Dead and abandoned. What a shame.

So after complaining a million times, my mom finally contacted our landlord to let them know about our dead-as-all-hell oven. What my mom neglected to say though, was that her daughter is a baker and who bakes for a living and thus, the landlord decided to wait over the weekend before calling someone.

And that’s where I am now. Ovenless and dying, waiting impatiently for it to be fixed and resuscitated.

HOW my mom neglected to mention that I need the oven is beyond me. Did she forget about the fact that we constantly have no less than 5 assorted desserts at any given time? Where does she think these desserts come from? Magic? A dessert fairy? And what does that say about me? That I just sit around eating said assorted desserts all day, binge-watching TV and scratching myself? Come on Mom!

So yeah. Now I’m woefully without an oven and hating every moment of it. Thank goodness I had the good sense to make these Perfect Cheesecake Bars right before it went kaput, though!

These rich and creamy Perfect Cheesecake Bars are truly the BEST and EASIEST cheesecake bars you'll make! They turn out perfect every time!These cheesecake bars truly are perfect. They’re soft, creamy, and absolutely heavenly. The secret ingredient is sour cream, which adds another level of creaminess and richness. You’ll adore them!

These rich and creamy Perfect Cheesecake Bars are truly the BEST and EASIEST cheesecake bars you'll make! They turn out perfect every time!*adapted from my Easy Oreo Cheesecake Bars recipe

Perfect Cheesecake Bars
Author: 
Recipe type: Bars
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 9-12
 
These Cheesecake Bars are SO simple to whip together and taste AMAZING!
Ingredients
  • 1 & ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • FOR CHEESECAKE:
  • 2 pkg (8 oz each) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • ⅓ cup sour cream
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line an 8x8" baking pan with foil, extending the sides of the foil over the edges of the pan. Mist the foil with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the finely crushed graham cracker crumbs and the melted butter until combined and moistened. Press into the prepared pan in an even, single layer and bake for approx. 12 minutes. Remove from the oven but keep the oven on.
  3. While crust bakes, prepare your filling. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the cream cheese and sugar with the paddle attachment and beat on medium for about 2 minutes or until combined and fluffy. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating very well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and sour cream for about 1 minute or until the cheesecake is very light and smooth.
  4. Spread the mixture into the baking dish and smooth out the top. Bake for approx. 35-40 minutes or until the edges are set, the top is very light golden brown and the center is just about set and only a little bit jiggly. Cool completely at room temperature and then once cool, refrigerate for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight, before cutting into bars.

These rich and creamy Perfect Cheesecake Bars are truly the BEST and EASIEST cheesecake bars you'll make! They turn out perfect every time!Rich, creamy, thick and delicious, you’ll fall in love with these fabulous cheesecake bars! My family and I could not get enough of these!

Have a sweet day!

xo, Hayley

No Bake Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake

This creamy, dreamy No Bake Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake is divine! It comes together in minutes, is easy to prepare and tastes like the inside of a peanut butter cup! I’m just gonna get straight to the point.

I hate the gym.

I hate cardio, I hate aerobics, I hate that I’m the only one in Zumba that looks like I’m having a grand mal seizure. I hate having to shower immediately after in fear of catching leprosy or something funky.

So yeah. I recently started up with the gym again and I’m having a helluva time. I know I need to be there so I put in the time, but damn. I’d much rather be shoveling this cheesecake in my face while binge-watching Orange in my pajamas.

…not that I do that or anything. Dontjudgeme.

But I’ll get straight to the point on this cheesecake: it’s the bomb. There’s a couple of qualifiers for you to check off in order to like this cheesecake.

1) You’re human
2) You like dessert
3) You like peanut butter cups in and around your mouth
4) You’re all of the above

This was originally going to be a Nutella cheesecake, but I spotted a jar of the Reese’s Peanut Butter Chocolate Spread in the back of my pantry and knew I had to use that instead. It’s like Nutella but with a peanut buttery twist. And it’s oh so delicious in this cheesecake!

Creamy, rich, peanut buttery, thick and delicious, you’ll go nuts for this cheesecake. But you *may* want to make a date with the gym afterwards.

This creamy, dreamy No Bake Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake is divine! It comes together in minutes, is easy to prepare and tastes like the inside of a peanut butter cup!

*adapted from the Sinful Sweets cookbook

5.0 from 1 reviews
No Bake Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake
Author: 
Recipe type: Cakes/Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-12
 
This cheesecake is totally decadent! Bursting with rich chocolate and creamy peanut butter flavors, it tastes like a giant, indulgent peanut butter cup!
Ingredients
  • 1 jar Reese's Chocolate Peanut Butter Spread
  • 2 (8 oz) pkgs cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 prepared Oreo chocolate cookie crust
  • 1 bag Reese's Peanut Butter Minis, roughly chopped
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat together the cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth. Add in the Reese's spread and blend until smooth. Blend in the heavy cream and beat until it has a mousse-like texture.
  2. Spread the mixture carefully into the prepared cookie crust. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight.
  3. Before serving, garnish the pie with the chopped Reese's cups. Cut into slices and serve!

This creamy, dreamy No Bake Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake is divine! It comes together in minutes, is easy to prepare and tastes like the inside of a peanut butter cup! I promise, the 8 hr. chill time is worth the wait! This dreamy pie tastes just like the inside of a peanut butter cup: smooth, creamy, thick and totally, utterly scrumptious. You’ll love it!

Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits & My Trip To T&Y Strawberry Patch

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is! A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of visiting the local town of Davis, CA on behalf of Best Food Facts. I’m their newest blogger for their Taste Program, where they educate about the benefits of fresh food and answer nutritional questions by a panel of experts. It’s a wonderful organization to work with and an excellent tool for those of you who may have questions about certain foods, benefits of eating certain foods, or nutritional questions.

My favorite part of our trip to Davis was visiting the T&Y Strawberry Patch in Woodland, CA. T&Y is a family-owned strawberry patch that’s been in business for years in the Woodland area. They have a huge property that boasts tons of, you guessed it, strawberries! The berries are divided by their type, Chandler, which are grown earlier in the year, and Albion, a newer strain of strawberry, grown right now. The Albion were what we had the chance to pick on the farm.

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is!

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is! The most interesting thing I learned from T&Y’s resident tour-guide and strawberry aficionado was that their strawberry farm is prepared for the California drought we’re in. The strawberries are resistant to the heat, especially the Albion strain, and resistant to the drought. T&Y operates on a minimal water drip system which adequately nourishes the strawberry plants without flooding them or wasting precious water resources. Since California’s drought is a serious one (and believe me, we’re suffering) it was interesting to know that T&Y was operating as they normally would, thanks to their drought-efficient watering system.

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is! I was also pleased to know that California produces 80% of the nation’s strawberries. That means the berries you have right now are probably grown here in California. And I totally didn’t know this, but the brighter the color of the strawberry flesh, the sweeter the berry will be. That’s why Albion berries are a huge hit right now; they’re a deep red color that yields a seriously juicy and sweet flavor profile.

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is! And if you’ve ever wondered if there’s a difference between organic or conventional strawberries when it comes to scary things like pesticides, have no fear. The USDA and Best Food Facts say that a man could eat 2,640 strawberries a day without any adverse side effects from pesticide residue. But I also don’t recommend eating 2,640 strawberries a day either, as tempting as it may be :)

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is!

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is! And strawberries, but of course, were the inspiration for these simple and scrumptious Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits. Have you ever had strawberry pretzel salad? It’s traditionally served like an ambrosia or in bar-form with a pretzel crust, so I took that inspiration to make a layered dessert that’s oh-so delicious. Sweet, salty, juicy and tart, it’s the perfect combination of flavors and textures. You’ll love it!

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits & My Trip To T&Y Strawberry Patch
Author: 
Recipe type: No Bake Desserts
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-4
 
These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are irresistible! Sweet, salty, tart and juicy, they're the ultimate no-bake treat!
Ingredients
  • 2 bricks (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • ½ cup white sugar, plus 2 Tbsp, divided
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 (8 oz) container Cool Whip, thawed
  • 1 cup chopped strawberries
  • 2 & ½ cups pretzels
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
Instructions
  1. First, make your crust. Pulse the pretzels in a large food processor until they're coarse crumbs. Pulse in the melted butter and 2 Tbsp white sugar until moistened. Portion evenly among four pint-sized mason jars or parfait glasses and use a smaller glass to compact into a loose-ish crust.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheeses, remaining sugar, and vanilla extract with a handheld electric mixer on medium speed, about 2 minutes. Fold in the Cool Whip until completely combined and fluffy. Spoon the cheesecake mixture into a large resealable plastic bag, seal out the air, and snip off a tip of the bag.
  3. Pipe the cheesecake about halfway full into the jars; sprinkle with about 2-3 Tbsp chopped strawberries. Continue piping the mixture until it reaches the brim of the jar and top with another 2-3 Tbsp of chopped strawberries. Repeat with remaining jars.
  4. Serve immediately, or store leftovers in the fridge for 1 day.

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is! I love how easy these are to whip up and how amazing they taste! The crunchy, salty pretzel crust pairs beautifully with the juicy, sweet strawberries and the fluffy, creamy cheesecake. These parfaits have so much flavor and awesome texture happening all at once!

I hope you enjoyed my recap and my recipe! Stay tuned for more awesome info with Best Food Facts, and be sure to connect with them on Facebook, Pinterest & Twitter!

These Strawberry Pretzel Salad Parfaits are the perfect harmony of sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. You'll love how easy this no-bake dessert recipe is! Have a sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Full disclosure: I was generously invited onto a trip to Davis, CA on behalf of Best Food Facts, who graciously sponsored this event. All opinions are 100% my own. Thank you for supporting the brands who help make The Domestic Rebel possible! 

No Bake Patriotic Marshmallow Cheesecakes

These No-Bake Patriotic Marshmallow Cheesecakes are ultra amazing! Luscious, fluffy marshmallow cheesecake and fresh berries combine to create these easy patriotic desserts.This time of year is kind of hard for a food blogger.

Why? Because it’s hot outside, and inevitably, the hotter the day is, the more I want to turn on my oven and bake something. I always seem to get those strong hankerings to bake whenever it’s the warmest day. I can’t explain why, but it’s always a tug-of-war in my head to decide whether or not turning on the oven is worth it.

And depending on the recipe, I usually do and just bear through the heat. My family, however, is not too keen on this process. But hey, baking is my job and I gotta do what I gotta do, right? Someone’s got to make the dough, and I don’t mean the cookie dough.

However, one of the job descriptions of being a food blogger is the ability to challenge myself to make new and inventive things depending on the seasons, the ingredients, or the holidays. And in my desperate limbo of “to bake or not to bake”, I happened to come up with this idea for a no-bake cheesecake.

And I have to say, it’s pretty brilliant.

I wanted something refreshing that would totally cool you off without being heavy and of course, without heating up the kitchen. Plus, with Fourth of July coming up, I also challenged myself to make this dessert patriotic for the upcoming holiday. And with the season, I wanted to utilize fresh berries since they’re perfect this time of year and relatively inexpensive at the farmers market. Oh, and then there’s the fact that I absolutely had to use JET-PUFFED Marshmallow Crème in it because duh.

As a marshmallow lover and JET-PUFFED’s brand ambassador this year, I’m always looking for new ways to incorporate marshmallows or marshmallow crème into my recipes for that sweet flavor and gooey texture. Incorporating marshmallow crème into these no-bake cheesecakes gives it a fluffy, whipped texture that’s absolutely amazing and pairs beautifully with the fresh blueberries and strawberries. Garnish it with a little handful of JET-PUFFED’s Star Mallows on top and you’ve got an easy, impressive patriotic treat to serve up to your family or backyard BBQ guests.

The best part? Your oven stays off the whole time. Hallelujah!

These No-Bake Patriotic Marshmallow Cheesecakes are ultra amazing! Luscious, fluffy marshmallow cheesecake and fresh berries combine to create these easy patriotic desserts.

No Bake Patriotic Marshmallow Cheesecakes
Author: 
Recipe type: Cheesecake
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
These No-Bake Patriotic Marshmallow Cheesecakes couldn't be simpler to whip up! Fluffy and airy, they're the perfect treat for hot summer days.
Ingredients
  • 1 pkgs (8 oz) PHILADELPHIA Light Cream Cheese, softened
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ (7 oz) jar JET-PUFFED Marshmallow Crème
  • ½ (8 oz) tub Cool Whip Free, thawed
  • ⅔ cup fresh blueberries
  • ⅔ cup fresh strawberries, diced
  • JET-PUFFED Star Mallows, for garnish
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla with a handheld electric mixer on medium speed for about 2 minutes, or until creamy and fluffy. Beat in the marshmallow crème until combined. Lastly, fold in the Cool Whip until incorporated and mixture is light and fluffy.
  2. Place the mixture into a piping bag or a large resealable plastic bag and snip off a corner of the bag. Fill the bottoms of miniature 4 oz jars with about a Tablespoon each of the blueberries and strawberries. Pipe the cheesecake on top, filling to the brim of the jar.
  3. Top the cheesecakes with an arrangement of JET-PUFFED Star Mallows for a patriotic touch. Tie wooden spoons to the front of each jar for an easy, portable dessert. Store cheesecakes in the fridge until ready to serve.

These No-Bake Patriotic Marshmallow Cheesecakes are ultra amazing! Luscious, fluffy marshmallow cheesecake and fresh berries combine to create these easy patriotic desserts.These No-Bake Patriotic Marshmallow Cheesecakes are so dreamy! Fluffy whipped cheesecake flavored like sweet, gooey marshmallows and paired with fresh, juicy berries in adorable, portable mason jars for easy cleanup and fast service. What’s not to love?

Be sure to connect with JET-PUFFED on their social media accounts for more sweet recipes, tips & tricks, and information about marshmallows! You can find them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google + and Pinterest!

Hope you have a sweet day!

Xo, Hayley

The Best Cheesecake Cupcakes

These Cheesecake Cupcakes are delightfully easy cupcakes that taste just like rich and creamy cheesecake!A lot has changed since the last time I blogged about Cheesecake Cupcakes.

For one, I’m no longer dating Jessie, but we are still good friends and talk occasionally.

And for two, I’d like to think my photography has gotten better since 2011 :)

And for three, I used to film cooking videos with Jessie way back when, and so I’ll include the (embarrassing) video for your viewing (cringing) pleasure at the end of this post… and I’d love it if you could excuse the fact that I weighed a good 60 pounds lighter than I do now. (Hey, a lot can change in four years).

But let’s not talk about weight right before I introduce you to these cupcakes.

In fact, if it were humanly possible to time travel back to 2011, I wouldn’t do it…even if it meant fitting back into my size 8 jeans. Mostly because I like where I am right now, despite the fact that there are some hangups. But aren’t there always hangups, even in the best situations?

Perhaps not, but I’d rather there be some minor hangups in my otherwise happy life than it being perfect. Why? Because when things are too perfect, I start to get worried something very bad will happen soon. And inevitably, it does…and usually involves money, of which I do not have.

C’est la vie?

These Cheesecake Cupcakes are delightfully easy cupcakes that taste just like rich and creamy cheesecake!Anywho, this post is going nowhere fast so I better wrap it up before we’re all crying. (Or is that just me?) These Cheesecake Cupcakes are basically the best thing ever, so I strongly suggest you make them ASAP. You can also, if possible, avoid my video because it is mortally embarrassing that I sound like a teenage-boy-about-to-become-a-man. This is everyday life, folks.

Remember when I mentioned ‘hangups’?

These Cheesecake Cupcakes are delightfully easy cupcakes that taste just like rich and creamy cheesecake!

5.0 from 4 reviews
The Best Cheesecake Cupcakes
Author: 
Recipe type: Cakes/Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
 
These Cheesecake Cupcakes are perfect for serious cheesecake lovers! Flavored like creamy vanilla cheesecake and with cheesecake in the batter, they're the ultimate cheesecake treat.
Ingredients
  • 1 box yellow cake mix + ingredients on back of box
  • 1 small box sugar free/fat free cheesecake instant pudding
  • 1 (8oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • CREAM CHEESE FROSTING:
  • 1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • About 4 cups powdered sugar
  • About 4 honey graham crackers, crushed into a fine crumb
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 muffin tins with 24 paper liners. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, beat together the cream cheese, egg and powdered sugar until blended and thick, about 1 minute. This is your cheesecake filling. Set it aside.
  3. In a large bowl, prepare cake mix according to package instructions. Stir in cheesecake pudding mix until blended. Portion batter evenly into muffin tins, about ⅔ full. Add one heaping Tablespoon of cheesecake filling and spoon it on top of the batter. Bake cupcakes for about 15-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted around the edge of the cupcake comes out clean or with moist crumbs. Allow to cool completely.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter, cream cheese and vanilla with the paddle attachment until creamy and light, about 2 minutes. Gradually add in the powdered sugar, about a cup at a time, until frosting is light and fluffy.
  5. Pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes, taking care to cover the cheesecake middles of the cakes. Garnish with graham cracker crumbs. Serve! Store leftovers in the fridge, covered.

These Cheesecake Cupcakes are delightfully easy cupcakes that taste just like rich and creamy cheesecake!These taste just like cheesecake but in a moist, sweet cupcake form! You’ll love them if you’re a cheesecake fan like I am! :)

Here’s the video. I don’t need to know your thoughts, ha!

These Cheesecake Cupcakes are delightfully easy cupcakes that taste just like rich and creamy cheesecake!Have a sweet day!!

xo, Hayley

 

No-Bake Margarita Cheesecake Pie

This Margarita Cheesecake Pie is a no-bake wonder! It comes together in minutes, has great creamy, icy texture, and tastes like a frozen margarita, bursting with fresh, sweet & tart lime flavor!Happy Monday, you guys!

This Margarita Cheesecake Pie is to-die for. For reals.

Cinco de Mayo is tomorrow and I figured I was better late than never with this recipe. I knew that after trying my No-Bake Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie that I had to make a margarita version and here it is. Creamy, luscious, sweet and tart and just packed with a margarita punch. And non-drinkers, hath no fear – it is non-alcoholic.

Though if you’re a daredevil like myself, spiking it is recommended. I don’t tequila-discriminate.

My mom loves sour stuff. Sweet Tarts and the sour Jelly Bellies are one of her favorite things. I, however, cannot stand sour candy. Gummy worms – the ones that were once sour in a past life but are now a whisper of sour – are the only “sour” I can tolerate. Anything else is off-limits.

So you’d think that my mom would love margaritas, what with their sour punch and extreme tartness. But no, she hates margaritas with an intense passion. The woman who shoves a whole lime in her Corona, the woman who will eat Sweet Tarts until her tongue swells, the woman who loves sour candy with a fiery passion hates margaritas.

Did I mention she’s also allergic to cucumbers but not pickles? She is a strange, strange woman indeed.

I, for one, enjoy margaritas despite my typical anti-sour attitude. I kind of enjoy the puckery punch that the fresh lime has and the kick from the tequila. And this is precisely one of the reasons why I devoured this pie faster than you can say “tequila shots.”

That, and because it was 99 degrees F on Friday. NINETY-NINE. That is so foul, y’all. So I was taking alllllll the chill I could get, and this pie offered plenty of that iciness I craved on that hot day.

[And PLEASE don’t tell me 99 degrees isn’t hot. What kind of world do you live in if 99 degrees F. isn’t hot!? Whatever it is, I do not want to live in it.]

This Margarita Cheesecake Pie is a no-bake wonder! It comes together in minutes, has great creamy, icy texture, and tastes like a frozen margarita, bursting with fresh, sweet & tart lime flavor!ANYWHO. Let’s get to the bottom of this pie.

Er. I already did. Oops.

This Margarita Cheesecake Pie is a no-bake wonder! It comes together in minutes, has great creamy, icy texture, and tastes like a frozen margarita, bursting with fresh, sweet & tart lime flavor!*adapted from my No Bake Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie Recipe

No-Bake Margarita Cheesecake Pie
Author: 
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
This creamy, icy cheesecake pie is packed with a puckery punch from margarita mix, cream cheese and Cool Whip. It's such a dreamy Cinco de Mayo or summertime treat!
Ingredients
  • 1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 6 oz frozen margarita mix, somewhat thawed
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 (8 oz) container Cool Whip, thawed
  • Zest of one lime
  • 1 prepared graham cracker crust
  • Sparkling sugar, optional but recommended for crunch and a cute "salt" appearance
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese, margarita mix, and condensed milk with a handheld electric mixer on medium speed until combined. Continue beating for about 2 minutes or until creamy and smooth.
  2. Spoon in the Cool Whip and lime zest and beat to combine. Continue beating for about 2-3 minutes or until mixture is thick and fluffy. Mixture will continue to thicken as you whip it.
  3. Pour the mixture into the prepared crust and smooth out the top. Immediately freeze for up to 4-6 hours or overnight (overnight recommended) before cutting into slices. Garnish with the sparkling sugar right before serving. This is best served straight from the freezer or slightly thawed.

This Margarita Cheesecake Pie is a no-bake wonder! It comes together in minutes, has great creamy, icy texture, and tastes like a frozen margarita, bursting with fresh, sweet & tart lime flavor!I love the appearance of the sparkling sugar “salt” on top of each piece of this luscious, creamy pie. It’s packed with that punch of lime thanks to the non-alcoholic margarita mix and has plenty of that sweet-tart flavor you crave from a frosty, marg-on-the-rocks.

*Want to add tequila? Add about 1 shot’s worth in when you mix the condensed milk, cream cheese and margarita mix.*

*Cutting calories? Make this with fat-free or reduced-fat cream cheese, fat-free sweetened condensed milk, and Cool Whip Free or sugar-free Cool Whip.*

This Margarita Cheesecake Pie is a no-bake wonder! It comes together in minutes, has great creamy, icy texture, and tastes like a frozen margarita, bursting with fresh, sweet & tart lime flavor!Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits and An “I Love You Berry Much” Mother’s Day Party!

  This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.
#BestMomsDayEver #CollectiveBias

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!Today I’m going to go the sentimental route and talk about my beloved Mom in honor of Mother’s Day coming up on May 10th.

My Mom is amazing. I know everyone typically thinks their mom is the best mom and so on, but for me, I could not have asked for a better Mom. No other woman would do, and no other woman could ever replace her in my life.

My childhood was a magical one and I have my Mom to thank for that. We were by no means spoiled, and we lived on a middle-class budget, but by some miracle my Mom always managed to make holidays special. On Easter we’d have elaborate baskets filled to the brim with candy and treats. On Christmas, the tree runneth over with wrapped presents from Mom and Dad tied with big, shiny bows. Our Santa gifts have never been wrapped; instead, my Mom and Dad set them up in different parts of the living room so we can instantly identify what our gift is from afar. It’s that attention to detail that my Mom has that always makes the setups so pretty and perfect. Cookbooks displayed just so, or Barbies lined up like soldiers, ready for me to dress-up.

Of course, life hasn’t always been idyllic. When I was in the sixth grade, a classmate threatened to hurt me at school. I told the teacher, who told the principal, who told authorities, and the student was removed from the school. My Mom fought for my rights, believing in my tangible fear of the situation and stood up for me when I was scared. She took me to counseling but also provided a sounding board for when I needed to talk, or had a nightmare in the middle of the night. She’s even let me sleep next to her when a particular Are You Afraid of the Dark vampire mailman episode gave me the heebie jeebies, without diminishing my fear.

And throughout my teenage years and adulthood, as I battle one mental illness after another, my Mom has stood by my side, unwavering in her fierce loyalty and undying support. She’s pushed me in the right direction when I couldn’t see, she’s mended my heart when a long-time boyfriend cheated on me. She’s distracted my pain with shopping trips, and she’s offered practical advice when I needed a hand. She’s keen at sensing when something’s wrong – a mother’s instinct, no doubt – and her meticulousness helps set things right again with just the right words or a perfectly timed, heartfelt hug.

It’s in those moments that I begin to truly appreciate what an amazing, kind, caring, thoughtful, giving woman she is. Sacrificing her time to listen to me ramble, lending her ears to hold some of my deepest secrets, and proffering those strong, protective hugs only Moms can give. It’s in those precise moments, like when she tells me she’s proud of me, slips an ‘I Love You’ into the conversation, or pats me on the head and says I’m a ‘good girl’ – that I really, truly feel her unconditional love for me. And its in the moments when I repeat the ‘I Love You’, welcome her hug with an equally-strong one of my own, and force myself to be the best person and daughter I can be that I hope she sees my unconditional love for her.

I’m partnering with American Greetings for this particular post, and when I was asked to do a Mother’s Day-inspired party plan, I immediately thought of this idea. My sweet, lovable Mom LOVES strawberries, and I knew I could make a beautiful berry-inspired party with just a few key decorations and party foods. (And, of course, a really heartfelt, tug-at-those-heartstrings American Greetings card). This party couldn’t be simpler to whip up, and that’s a good thing seeing as it looks as if you spent all day making everything and because you have more time to mingle with guests and hang out with your Mom :)

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!So first things first: the theme! The ‘I Love You Berry Much’ theme will work for any Mom anywhere… not just for berry lovers! I chose this theme for several reasons: 1) because my Mom loves strawberries, and 2) because it’s the perfect spring-time theme for a party. What’s more springy than fresh berries, fresh flowers, and a light pastel-colored party?

And can we please talk about this No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake Mousse!?

This No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake Mousse is to-die for! Rich and creamy, it comes together in minutes and is SO delicious!This mousse couldn’t be more delicious or simpler to make, which is just an added bonus since it’s SO SCRUMPTIOUS! It starts with cream cheese, sugar and vanilla which you whip together until creamy, then simply fold in a tub of thawed Cool Whip for a dreamy, airy texture that’s out of this world. Layer with strawberries (or another fresh berry – this would be particularly delicious with raspberries too!) and voila! Done and done.

Strawberry LemonadeThis Strawberry Lemonade is only two simple ingredients: prepared lemonade and strawberry simple syrup. You can make your own simple syrup at home by boiling water, strawberries and sugar together, then straining it, or you can buy a prepared version like Torani. This would be so delicious with blackberries and blackberry syrup, or raspberries with raspberry syrup, too!

And if you’re feeling frisky, maybe spike it with some vodka. Or maybe not. #butyoutotallyshould

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!And you can’t do a berry-themed party without chocolate covered strawberries! They’re the ultimate strawberry treat and are so easy to make! Dunk a bunch of cleaned and dried strawberries into melted chocolate, allow to harden, and consume. It’s that easy and the kids will love decorating the strawberries with assorted nuts and sprinkles!

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!I also made chocolate-dipped berry Oreos for a fun chocolaty treat. My Mom loves her Oreos, so I knew this was a must! Simple flower-shaped candies on top keep with the floral, fresh theme and make them look pretty, although sprinkles or chopped, freeze-dried strawberries would be lovely, too.

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!And you can’t do a Mother’s Day Party without flowers! I picked these up at Walmart (along with all of my other supplies) because Walmart has a wonderful American Greetings-inspired Mother’s Day section, complete with the whole line-up of American Greetings-brand cards, trinkets, wrapping materials and more, all fit to be a one-stop-shop for Mom’s Day. I found these flowers nearby and loved that they would go with my color scheme of pink (my mom’s favorite color!) and the natural aspect of the fresh floral and berry theme.

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!I decorated the tablescape with some American Greetings cards without their envelopes. I figured this makes them more personal and uses the cards as decoration for your tablescape – double duty! Plus, they have such a great assortment of cards for Mother’s Day, from sweet to sentimental, funny to straightforward. I, of course, am a huge sap and tend to veer on the sentimental side of things :)

instoreAnd of course, you can’t do Mother’s Day without a gift! This ‘Ultimate Mom Basket’ is perfect for my Mom and I found all of it in the American Greetings One-Stop-Shop which is so convenient! I picked up a cute “World’s Greatest Mom” mug for her since she loves coffee, the stuffed animal dog to remind her of her furry friends at home while she’s away, a journal because she loves making lists and writing things down, an owl jewelry holder since she loves her earrings (she has the biggest collection I’ve ever seen and this is perfect for housing studs) and a cute flower-pot decoration for her to put on her desk at work.

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!All I did was buy a small basket/bin, line it with a pretty dishtowel (though tissue paper works too, but I loved the gingham dish towel for this theme!) and place everything inside. Easy peasy! And? The whole basket (including the card, bin, and the candy I filled inside of the mug!) is under $25. I’m telling you – that one-stop-shop is a really awesome!

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!I know my Mom is gonna love it! Especially that sweet card, which has glitter. Every Mom needs glitter – it’s a fact.

Now, I hope you didn’t forget about that Cheesecake Mousse, because I sure didn’t! Here’s the recipe :)

This No-Bake Cheesecake Mousse is to-die for! Rich and creamy, it comes together in seconds and is SO delicious!

5.0 from 2 reviews
No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits, Strawberry Lemonade, and An "I Love You Berry Much" Mother's Day Party!
Author: 
Recipe type: Cheesecake, No Bake Treats
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
This light and fluffy cheesecake mousse couldn't be simpler to whip up! It's easily doubled or tripled, too.
Ingredients
  • 1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
  • Fresh strawberries, roughly diced
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla with a handheld electric mixer on medium speed. Beat for about 2 minutes or until creamy and blended.
  2. Fold in the Cool Whip completely until the mixture has doubled in size and is fluffy. Spoon into a piping bag attached with a large open circle tip (or simply snip off the corner of the bag).
  3. Fill the bottom of a small plastic cup with strawberries and pipe some cheesecake mousse on top; about 1-2 Tablespoons worth. Add more strawberries, then pipe on another Tablespoon or so of mousse. Finish with remaining cups.
  4. Serve immediately.

Host the Best Mother's Day Party ever!My Mom loved this party so much! It was curated with her in mind but it can work for any special woman in your life! It’s sweet, easy and totally memorable as being one of her favorite parties thus far!

Be sure to check out Walmart’s American Greetings one-stop-shop for all things Mother’s Day! You can check them out online HERE and find Mother’s Day inspiration HERE, using the hashtag #BestMomsDayEver!

#BestMomsDayEver Giveaway- $4,000 Prize Value

Have a berry sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

Easy Oreo Cheesecake Bars

These rich & creamy Oreo Cheesecake Bars really are the BEST! Soft, luscious and bursting with chocolate, they're a cookies & cream lover's dream!As you read this, I will have just returned home from a quick jaunt to Santa Barbara, CA. for a blogging retreat.

And I can guarantee you, I’m sad about it.

I’ve been longing for a beach day for awhile now. The beach is one of those places that is so strange to me since it offers both great relaxation and also hefty stress. Why? Because while the sound of the waves crashing, the water ebbing and flowing, the seagulls chirping, and the wind softly blowing, there are granules of sand stuck EVERYWHERE in places that sand should never see, there’s likely a frick-ton of wind blowing debris, sand and seagull feathers into my face, and there’s the teensy fact that I’m stuck wearing a swimsuit. Those poor other beach patrons.

In January when I went to the Caribbean, I wore a dress cover-up on the beach and everyone was puzzled as to why I wasn’t in a bikini. Um, because I’m about as pale as computer paper and my body looks like a giant lumpy thumb. Okay, not really, but it isn’t any Victoria’s Secret stunt-double either.

My point is. While I’m totally relaxed at the beach most of the time, there’s still that part of me that’s like OMG SAND NOOOOO and dreading removing my cover-up and revealing my paleness to the sun.

These rich & creamy Oreo Cheesecake Bars really are the BEST! Soft, luscious and bursting with chocolate, they're a cookies & cream lover's dream!What I’m not afraid of? Facing these Oreo Cheesecake Bars. They’re seriously the easiest, foolproof cheesecake bars and they are the best in the flavor department. Rich, creamy, chocolaty and laced with crushed Oreo cookies and cream bits. SO AMAZING.

These rich & creamy Oreo Cheesecake Bars really are the BEST! Soft, luscious and bursting with chocolate, they're a cookies & cream lover's dream!So whether or not you’re a Victoria’s Secret Angel or a pale thumb like myself, you’re guaranteed to love these bars!

Don’t like Oreos? Feel free to substitute Golden Oreos, Taffy Cookies, or Nutter Butters for this insanely simple recipe!

But now… get some!

These rich & creamy Oreo Cheesecake Bars really are the BEST! Soft, luscious and bursting with chocolate, they're a cookies & cream lover's dream!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Easy Oreo Cheesecake Bars
Author: 
Recipe type: Bars
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 9
 
These creamy cheesecake bars are loaded up with lots of crushed Oreo cookies for a fabulously chocolaty cookies & cream flavor!
Ingredients
  • FOR CRUST:
  • 24 Oreo Cookies, crushed into very fine crumbs
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • FOR CHEESECAKE:
  • 2 pkg (8 oz each) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • ⅓ cup sour cream
  • About 10 Oreo Cookies, coarsely chopped/crushed
  • Hot Fudge Sauce, for drizzling on top, optional but recommended
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line an 8x8" baking pan with foil, extending the sides of the foil over the edges of the pan. Mist the foil with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the finely crushed Oreo crumbs and the melted butter until combined and moistened. Press into the prepared pan in an even, single layer and bake for approx. 12 minutes. Remove from the oven but keep the oven on.
  3. While crust bakes, prepare your filling. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the cream cheese and sugar with the paddle attachment and beat on medium for about 2 minutes or until combined and fluffy. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating very well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and sour cream for about 1 minute or until the cheesecake is very light and smooth. Beat in the remaining coarsely crushed Oreo Cookies.
  4. Spread the mixture into the baking dish and smooth out the top. Bake for approx. 35-40 minutes or until the edges are set, the top is very light golden brown and the center is just about set and only a little bit jiggly. Cool completely at room temperature and then once cool, refrigerate for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight, before cutting into bars. Drizzle the room temperature hot fudge on top of the bars just before serving.

These rich & creamy Oreo Cheesecake Bars really are the BEST! Soft, luscious and bursting with chocolate, they're a cookies & cream lover's dream!These cheesecake bars are OMG-worthy. Seriously delicious, so creamy, thick and just packed with rich chocolate and yummy cream flavor. I love the swirl of hot fudge on top, too – just drives that rich chocolate flavor home even more :) You’ll LOVE these bars!

These rich & creamy Oreo Cheesecake Bars really are the BEST! Soft, luscious and bursting with chocolate, they're a cookies & cream lover's dream! Have a sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Red Velvet Cheesecake Ice Cream {No Machine Needed!}

This rich and creamy four-ingredient Red Velvet Cheesecake Ice Cream is packed with flavor and is made without an ice cream machine.You guys – this ice cream is off the chain! So rich and incredibly delicious.

And it has Little Debbie Red Velvet Cakes swirled throughout it, giving that cute freckled look and that creamy, chocolaty red velvet taste.

Dude. It’s cake and ice cream in one. There’s really not much better than this.

I used to work at this cupcake shop and red velvet was the most popular flavor. I don’t know how or why people loved it so much; it just tasted like cupcake. You know how things sometimes just taste like… it? Like that’s it? No other notes, no other flavors, just kind of one-note? That was this red velvet cupcake. It kind of just tasted like glorified red bread, which is weird since I’ve never tried red bread before then.

Then said red bread was topped with a mound of cream cheese frosting which was way too sweet. So in other words, it wasn’t that great, but everyone freaked for it. When we were sold out, you’d think it was the start of World War III. People were nutso for their red bread.

So from that stemmed a general dislike for red velvet. I didn’t understand the overwhelming appeal of this mysterious is-it-chocolate-or-not Southern staple. But then I partnered up with Little Debbie – you know, the QUEEN of snack cakes – and she sent me a box of their Red Velvet Cakes. Chiiiiiiiild, you can color me a red velvet fan through and through if they all taste that good. It was chocolaty without being overpowering, richly sweet without being cloying, and had that marshmallow-y creamy center that was absolutely heaven on earth.

This rich and creamy four-ingredient Red Velvet Cheesecake Ice Cream is packed with flavor and is made without an ice cream machine.And naturally, I knew it had to be made into an ice cream. But of course.

This ice cream is PACKED with rich, tangy and creamy cheesecake flavor – the base is cheesecake, after all – and it’s studded with chunks of Little Debbie Red Velvet Cakes swirled throughout. This would be the BEST served up in a waffle bowl or cone, and I happen to think it’d be mighty tasty with hot fudge drizzled on top. But that’s just me, obvi.

This rich and creamy four-ingredient Red Velvet Cheesecake Ice Cream is packed with flavor and is made without an ice cream machine.[PSSST – want to win a case of your favorite Little Debbie snacks? Be sure to enter on my Facebook post today! Hop on over and answer a simple question for your chance to win.]

Now let’s get ice creamin’.

This rich and creamy four-ingredient Red Velvet Cheesecake Ice Cream is packed with flavor and is made without an ice cream machine.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Red Velvet Cheesecake Ice Cream {No Machine Needed!}
Author: 
Recipe type: Ice Cream, No Bake
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
This no-machine-needed ice cream is so impossibly rich and creamy, with a strong, tangy cheesecake base studded with Little Debbie Red Velvet Cakes swirled throughout. It's a red velvet lover's dream!
Ingredients
  • 1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 small box sugar-free/fat-free instant cheesecake pudding mix
  • 1 box Little Debbie Red Velvet Cakes, roughly chopped into bite-sized bits
Instructions
  1. Pour the sweetened condensed milk into a bowl and stir in the cheesecake instant pudding mix just barely to combine. Place the Cool Whip in a large bowl and drizzle the sweetened condensed milk mixture over top; gently fold the milk mixture into the Cool Whip until combined.
  2. Barely stir in the chopped Red Velvet Cakes until incorporated. Place the mixture into a freezer-safe, airtight container and freeze for up to 6 hours before serving.

This rich and creamy four-ingredient Red Velvet Cheesecake Ice Cream is packed with flavor and is made without an ice cream machine.Mmmm. An easy, four-ingredient ice cream is hard to beat, and this ice cream has it all – tangy, sweet, creamy and cakey, all wrapped in one. You won’t be able to resist this simple ice cream recipe!

Have a super sweet day – and be sure to check out FACEBOOK for your chance to win Little Debbie products!

xo, Hayley

No-Bake Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie

This Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie is a light and creamy delightful cheesecake that's equal parts sweet, tart, and totally refreshing.It’s obvious I love lemon. But I don’t really specify where I like that lemon.

Much like how people dislike fruits in their dessert, I dislike lemon in my dinner. I don’t do savory lemon. Savory lemon is dead to me.

Lemon has zero place near my chicken. It should not be near pepper. In my eyes, shrimp and lemon had a falling out forever ago and are no longer on speaking terms. Likewise, it shouldn’t be zested on green beans or mixed with rice. It should stay among its friends in the desserts world, like cakes and pies and tarts and cookies where it belongs. All you people with your lemon chicken and rice make me shudder.

Sweet lemon is where it’s at! You can’t turn down sweet lemon; it’s your BFF, your confidant, your — perhaps I spend too much time alone with food. But seriously, sweet lemon is awesome and I love it best when it’s mixed with butter, sugar, cream, or white chocolate… among anything else in which it’s transformed into a heavenly dessert.

Sweet lemon doesn’t betray my taste-buds like lemon pepper chicken does. Seriously? Lemon and pepper and garlic? Nooooooo. It hurts my heart. But lemon and butter and white chocolate? Doable. Totally doable.

This Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie is a light and creamy delightful cheesecake that's equal parts sweet, tart, and totally refreshing.And this cheesecake pie? So insanely doable, it may as well make itself and just about does. It’s so simple, you guys. It’s a mere 5 ingredients – 6 if you count freshly grated lime – and it comes together in seconds, albeit needing time to chill. And chill we can — because I am obsessed with this luscious, lemony dessert and have been eating pretty much straight from the middle with a spoon after I took these pictures. You all should be so glad you don’t have behind-the-scenes footage of me after photo shoots. Dear lawwwwdddd help me and the food I shovel into my pie-hole so I don’t have to put it away.

(And is it just me, or is putting things away always THE WORST? Putting away your clean laundry, putting away the clean dishes, putting away the groceries, unpacking your suitcase… it is TERRIBLE. I would rather sacrifice my growing thighs than throw some pie back in the freezer. True story).

This Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie is a light and creamy delightful cheesecake that's equal parts sweet, tart, and totally refreshing.Anywhooooo, this pie is fab and you should make it. It’d make a great Easter dessert! So dooooo it. Be Team Lemon with me!

This Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie is a light and creamy delightful cheesecake that's equal parts sweet, tart, and totally refreshing.

No-Bake Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie
Author: 
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
This sweet and easy Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie comes together in just a few simple steps and tastes fabulous! Sweet, creamy, tart and light, it's the perfect refreshing dessert for any occasion.
Ingredients
  • 1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 6 oz (half of can) pink lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
  • Zest of one lime
  • 1 prepared or homemade graham cracker pie shell
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese, condensed milk, and pink lemonade concentrate with a handheld electric mixer on low speed for about 30 seconds. Turn up the speed to medium and cream for about 1-2 minutes or until combined and smooth.
  2. Add in the Cool Whip and lime zest and continue beating the mixture until it's completely smooth, light and fluffy, or about 2-3 minutes. The mixture will thicken up as it mixes.
  3. Pour the mixture into the prepared crust and place in the freezer to set, about 3 hours or overnight. Remove from the freezer and cut into slices just before serving; store leftovers in the freezer. Pies taste perfect after about 5 minutes at room temperature.

This Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie is a light and creamy delightful cheesecake that's equal parts sweet, tart, and totally refreshing.This pie is everything. Sweet, tart, light and luscious, it has everything you could want in a creamy, refreshing dessert: ease of preparation, fantastic flavor, no-bake(!!) and it looks pretty. What more do you want?

*Tip: You could easily make this pie lower-calorie, lower-sugar, and/or lower-fat by using Cool Whip Free or Cool Whip Sugar Free, Fat-Free Sweetened Condensed Milk, Fat-Free Cream Cheese, and Low-Sugar Pink Lemonade Concentrate. 
This Pink Lemonade Cheesecake Pie is a light and creamy delightful cheesecake that's equal parts sweet, tart, and totally refreshing.

Have a super sweet day!!

xo, Hayley

 

 

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