The Best Banana Pudding Pie

This is the BEST Banana Pudding Pie EVER! Promise :) Layers of sweet Nilla Wafers, fresh bananas, a creamy, smooth-as-silk banana pudding and homemade whipped cream come together in this easy, simple pie! If you love banana pudding, you’ll flip for this Banana Pudding Pie! All the flavors of homemade pudding in one simple to prepare pie!

So last week I traveled to West Chester, Pennsylvania for training for QVC. Yes, they require training – and it was the best job training I’ve ever had! (Think about it – QVC is a well-oiled machine. They know what sells and what doesn’t. They want everyone to be on the same page. And like I said, the training was soooo worth the whole day of flying before and after the training class and the fact that I got the flu).

Anyway, it was so valuable and wonderful to meet fellow guests who will be selling their products on QVC, too! (And BTW, if you’re reading this and totally clueless as to what I’m talking about, I’m going on QVC this month – the 29th to be exact – to sell my second cookbook, Two in One Desserts!)

And of course, while I was there I thought I was the only cookbook author training that day. But in walks a tall, gorgeous woman wearing a floor-length fur coat and designer shades and announces she wrote a dessert cookbook to be sold on QVC, too. And her name was Patti LaBelle.

PATTI FREAKING LABELLE, Y’ALL.

At first I didn’t register who she was – I spent the better part of the morning exercising all my concentrated efforts not to puke all over their gorgeous offices – but when it hit me I tried my hardest not to be starstruck by her larger-than-life presence.

And then I thought, oh great – how am I gonna compete with Patti LaBelle?!

But you guys – Patti is the sweetest, most genuine person I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. She was so kind and warm-hearted and offered wonderful praise for everyone who was there pitching their products to QVC. And of course, she was as glamorous as I’d expect.

Once I spent time at training and with Patti, I realized I am not competing with this woman – I am honored to have written a dessert book like she has – and she was so excited about my book, too! (So should I tell my publishers to put “Patti LaBelle loves this book!” on the back? Kidding. Kind of).

So yeah, that’s the story of how I met Patti LaBelle. She’s awesome, and I hope you have the pleasure of meeting her one day. Also, buy her book! It comes out in May and everything she told me about it sounds AMAZING.

Speaking of amazing… can we talk real quick about this Banana Pudding Pie? Because it’s totally incredible.

This is the BEST Banana Pudding Pie EVER! Promise :) Layers of sweet Nilla Wafers, fresh bananas, a creamy, smooth-as-silk banana pudding and homemade whipped cream come together in this easy, simple pie! We’re talking Nilla Wafer crust, a layer of freshly sliced bananas, a layer of creamy, decadent, silky-smooth banana pudding, and lots of fresh whipped cream. It is HEAVEN and it totally satisfied my intense need for banana pudding that I had a few weeks ago.

MAKE IT BECAUSE PATTI TOLD YOU TO.

This is the BEST Banana Pudding Pie EVER! Promise :) Layers of sweet Nilla Wafers, fresh bananas, a creamy, smooth-as-silk banana pudding and homemade whipped cream come together in this easy, simple pie!

The Best Banana Pudding Pie
Author: 
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
This Banana Pudding Pie tastes just like banana pudding, but there's no hassle about distributing it among jars or cups. Everyone gets a heaping slice of creamy, decadent banana goodness!
Ingredients
  • One prepared Nilla Wafer (or graham cracker) crust
  • One 3.4 ounce box INSTANT banana pudding mix
  • 1 & ½ cups cold milk
  • 2 & ½ cups fresh whipped cream (or whipped topping)
  • 2 medium bananas, cut into coins
  • Miniature Nilla Wafer cookies
Instructions
  1. Layer banana coins on the bottom of the pie crust; set any remaining coins aside for garnishing the top of the pie.
  2. Whisk together the instant banana pudding mix and the milk together until thickened and combined, about 2 minutes. Fold in 2 cups of the fresh whipped cream (or whipped topping, if using) until combined and fluffy. Spread into the prepared pan in an even layer.
  3. Pipe remaining whipped cream around the pie and garnish with the miniature Nilla Wafer cookies and remaining banana coins. If desired, crush some Nilla Wafers to sprinkle over the top of the pie.
  4. Refrigerate covered for at LEAST 4 hours or until set. If pie filling is still too soft, freeze briefly for about 10-15 minutes to make it easier to cut. Note: if you freeze the pie, leave the fresh bananas off as they will turn brown once brought to room temperature.

This is the BEST Banana Pudding Pie EVER! Promise :) Layers of sweet Nilla Wafers, fresh bananas, a creamy, smooth-as-silk banana pudding and homemade whipped cream come together in this easy, simple pie! I love how easy and simple this pie is – only a few ingredients, a couple minutes of prep and a hugely delicious payoff awaits. Perfect for banana pudding lovers like myself!

This is the BEST Banana Pudding Pie EVER! Promise :) Layers of sweet Nilla Wafers, fresh bananas, a creamy, smooth-as-silk banana pudding and homemade whipped cream come together in this easy, simple pie! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

No-Bake Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Pie

This Frozen No-Bake Strawberry Daiquiri Pie is so phenomenal! Creamy, smooth, dreamy, strawberry-flavored perfection made with frozen strawberry daiquiri mix. Only a few ingredients, so easy and tastes great frozen or chilled in the fridge. This No-Bake Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Pie is wonderful! Smooth & creamy and bursting with fresh strawberry flavor, it’s great for spring and summertime and is entirely no-bake!

So when I was a kid, I was obsessed with the idea of being older.

My parents love telling the story that when I was 3 years old and people asked me how old I was, I would dead-pan “I’m 9.”

When I was a kid and my family & I would go out to dinner, I would always order a “virgin” strawberry daiquiri to seem like I was this experienced old soul who knew allthethings about fine alcoholic beverages.

When I was entering middle school, my new school was called a “middle school.” But because I watched Degrassi fervently, I knew some middle schools were called “junior high schools” and so therefore I told everyone I knew I was entering “junior high school” because it sounded more mature.

When I was in high school, I liked an older guy for a long time and was obsessed with the idea of looking older and more mature so he wouldn’t think I was just a dumb freshman girl with a crush.

And when I turned 18, I wanted everyone to know I was an ADULT, DANGIT, and made sure everyone knew. (Side note: I know I must be wonderful to be around. *eye roll*)

But back to my childhood days of ordering alcoholic beverages minus the booze – strawberry daiquiris were my favorite drink to order as a kid. I remember vividly going to Red Lobster with my fam and looking through their drink menu like I was some 10 year old booze-hound, poring over the pictures and descriptions of the colorful, umbrella-clad drinks. A lot of the drinks are virtually impossible to make virgin, but strawberry daiquiris were an easy one to blend up sans the booze, so it became a staple for me. It felt like such a huge graduation from childish Shirley Temples.

This Frozen No-Bake Strawberry Daiquiri Pie is so phenomenal! Creamy, smooth, dreamy, strawberry-flavored perfection made with frozen strawberry daiquiri mix. Only a few ingredients, so easy and tastes great frozen or chilled in the fridge. But as I actually became older, I stopped ordering fancy bar drinks and settled for plain ol’ Diet Cokes and iced teas. Now that I’m 26 and trying to slow down time, I barely order alcohol anymore because I’d rather spend the extra cash on a bangin’ dessert instead.

To be honest, in the last 15 years I’ve forgotten about strawberry daiquiris until recently when I was grocery shopping. I spotted the frozen strawberry daiquiri drink mix in the freezer case and instantly those memories rushed back to me like the flood gates had opened. There I was, a freak holding a strawberry daiquiri frozen drink mix having a reverie in the frozen foods aisle of Safeway, thinking about ways to use this drink mix when it hit me: PIE.

This Frozen No-Bake Strawberry Daiquiri Pie is so phenomenal! Creamy, smooth, dreamy, strawberry-flavored perfection made with frozen strawberry daiquiri mix. Only a few ingredients, so easy and tastes great frozen or chilled in the fridge. This pie is such a cinch to whip up and is SO tasty. It’s creamy, smooth, flavorful and fresh and tastes amazing frozen or chilled in the fridge, though it’s required to be frozen to set at first. I topped mine with dollops of fresh whipped cream, but this would be excellent drizzled with chocolate sauce, additional strawberry sundae sauce, or even white chocolate. The world’s your oyster, kid.

Now let’s all take a bite and reminisce about our childhoods, ‘kay?

This Frozen No-Bake Strawberry Daiquiri Pie is so phenomenal! Creamy, smooth, dreamy, strawberry-flavored perfection made with frozen strawberry daiquiri mix. Only a few ingredients, so easy and tastes great frozen or chilled in the fridge.

5.0 from 1 reviews
No-Bake Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Pie
Author: 
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
This Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Pie is phenomenal! Creamy, dreamy, smooth pie flavored with strawberries. A wonderful staple for spring or summertime!
Ingredients
  • One 9" Nilla Wafer pie crust
  • One 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • One 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 6 ounces frozen strawberry daiquiri drink mix, slightly thawed
  • 1 tsp strawberry extract
  • One 8-ounce tub Cool Whip, thawed
  • Additional whipped cream and fresh strawberries for garnish, optional but recommended
Instructions
  1. Cream the cream cheese, condensed milk, strawberry daiquiri drink mix and strawberry extract together with an electric mixer on medium speed until blended, about 30 seconds. Continue beating for 2 more minutes until mixture is smooth and slightly thickened.
  2. Fold in the Cool Whip until mixture is fully incorporated. Pour the mixture into the prepared pie crust and smooth out the top. Carefully place in the freezer and freeze until firm and solid, about 3-4 hours.
  3. Just before serving, garnish with additional whipped cream and halved strawberry slices, or serve with chocolate or white chocolate sauce. You may store the pie in the freezer for about 1 week (the fresh berries on top may not last that long), or keep covered in the fridge for about 1-2 days.

This Frozen No-Bake Strawberry Daiquiri Pie is so phenomenal! Creamy, smooth, dreamy, strawberry-flavored perfection made with frozen strawberry daiquiri mix. Only a few ingredients, so easy and tastes great frozen or chilled in the fridge. I love how creamy, fabulous and utterly delicious this pie is! I took it to my apartment manager’s office and it went fast. It’s a total hit!

This Frozen No-Bake Strawberry Daiquiri Pie is so phenomenal! Creamy, smooth, dreamy, strawberry-flavored perfection made with frozen strawberry daiquiri mix. Only a few ingredients, so easy and tastes great frozen or chilled in the fridge. Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

 

Rice Krispy Treat No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake

This RICE KRISPY TREAT NO-BAKE STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE is such a show-stopping dessert! No-bake, so easy to whip up, quick and impressive, it features a gooey Rice Krispy Treat crust, a smooth & creamy strawberry cheesecake filling and is topped with fresh strawberries. This Rice Krispy Treat No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake is so flavorful, unique and INCREDIBLE! Easy, impressive, and quick to whip up, it’s a must-make!

This Valentine’s Day, I’d like a Valentine. This Valentine’s Day, I’d also like this Rice Krispy Treat No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake. At least one of those will happen, and it isn’t the real-life male Valentine part.

You guys – online dating is bleak. I don’t know where you guys find your soulmate, because all I see is a literal sea of shirtless bathroom pics, vaping pictures (ugh), and/or dudes that I just know I shouldn’t even entertain. Ladies, you know the dudes I’m talking about.

I talked to a few guys, but found out they had some deal-breakers for me. I feel like every guy I’ve talked to with a modicum of interest has a deal-breaker! And believe me, they are BIG-TIME deal-breakers… not like, he likes the Cowboys or something… (though that would be a deal-breaker enough for my dad and brother).

Sigh.

Anyway, so if you need me on February 14th I’ll be eating my feelings with this cheesecake. Care to join me, fellow singletons?!

So. This cheesecake. It is INSANE.

It’s a riff off of my Rice Krispy Treat No-Bake Marshmallow Cheesecake recipe that I made last year, but this one has a strawberry cheesecake twist that’s perfect for Valentine’s Day!

This RICE KRISPY TREAT NO-BAKE STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE is such a show-stopping dessert! No-bake, so easy to whip up, quick and impressive, it features a gooey Rice Krispy Treat crust, a smooth & creamy strawberry cheesecake filling and is topped with fresh strawberries. Here’s the low-down: First, make your Rice Krispy Treat crust. Just make a batch of Rice Krispy Treats and instead of putting them into a rectangular pan, press them into a greased 9″ springform pan. The springform pan makes releasing the cheesecake SUPER easy! If you don’t have a springform pan, line a 9″ round cake pan with parchment and use the parchment to lift the cheesecake out once it’s done. Your cheesecake crust may be thicker since cake pans aren’t as high up the sides as springform pans are.

Let the crust set for about 30 minutes, then make your filling!

This RICE KRISPY TREAT NO-BAKE STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE is such a show-stopping dessert! No-bake, so easy to whip up, quick and impressive, it features a gooey Rice Krispy Treat crust, a smooth & creamy strawberry cheesecake filling and is topped with fresh strawberries. For the filling, cream together some cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and strawberry jam/preserves until creamy. Fold in marshmallow creme/fluff and Cool Whip, then spread this glorious mixture into the crust and smooth out the top. The hardest part – by far – is waiting for it to set (about 1-2 hours) before cutting into slices. If you want to get fancy, top it off with whipped cream and sliced strawberries. You know, for prosperity or something.

Now whatever you do, make this immediately!

This RICE KRISPY TREAT NO-BAKE STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE is such a show-stopping dessert! No-bake, so easy to whip up, quick and impressive, it features a gooey Rice Krispy Treat crust, a smooth & creamy strawberry cheesecake filling and is topped with fresh strawberries.

Rice Krispy Treat No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake
Author: 
Recipe type: Cakes/Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
This Rice Krispy Treat No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake is AWESOME. Crunchy, crisp, creamy and smooth, it's a unique treat that's sure to please everyone!
Ingredients
  • FOR CRUST:
  • 6 cups Rice Krispies cereal
  • 5 Tbsp salted butter
  • 1 (10 oz) bag miniature marshmallows
  • FOR CHEESECAKE & GARNISH:
  • 1 (8 ounce) pkg cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup seedless strawberry preserves/jam
  • 1 (7 oz) jar marshmallow fluff/creme
  • 1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
  • Additional whipped cream and sliced strawberries for garnish
Instructions
  1. Liberally grease a 9" springform pan with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and marshmallows together until smooth and bubbly. Pour into a large bowl with the cereal and toss to combine. Pour the coated cereal mixture into the prepared pan and use the bottom of a greased drinking glass to gently press and compact the cereal mixture into the pan and up the sides to create the crust. Let set for 30 minutes.
  3. Cream together the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and strawberry preserves until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. Beat in the marshmallow fluff to combine, and then fold in the Cool Whip until fluffy. Pour the cheesecake mixture into the crust and smooth out the top. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  4. Just before serving, garnish the cheesecake with additional whipped cream and sliced strawberries, if desired.

This RICE KRISPY TREAT NO-BAKE STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE is such a show-stopping dessert! No-bake, so easy to whip up, quick and impressive, it features a gooey Rice Krispy Treat crust, a smooth & creamy strawberry cheesecake filling and is topped with fresh strawberries. A crunchy, gooey crust with a smooth & creamy strawberry cheesecake filling… this cheesecake may be my new favorite dessert ever!!

This RICE KRISPY TREAT NO-BAKE STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE is such a show-stopping dessert! No-bake, so easy to whip up, quick and impressive, it features a gooey Rice Krispy Treat crust, a smooth & creamy strawberry cheesecake filling and is topped with fresh strawberries. Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie

This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie is a simple and stunning dessert! A fudgy brownie "crust" topped with a light & fluffy strawberry pudding mousse and topped with chocolate-covered berries. Have your fruit and cover it in chocolate, too!This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie is exceptional! A fudgy brownie bottom topped with a light & fluffy strawberry pudding and topped with chocolate sauce. Decadent, divine, and oh so delicious!

Y’all – I am DONE with my book!

Where’s my flute of champagne?!

I am so so so glad I’m finished, but also kind of sad. I guess it’s like when you’re pregnant and you have the baby. You miss being pregnant, but you’re also like thank god it’s out of me so I can have my body back. Except replace “baby” with “book” and “body” with “life.”

And now I can slightly have my life back again, which means I can dip my feet yet again in the online dating world, or go on a vacation or drink champagne starting at noon daily because I’m done, y’all.

Of course, there’s still editing to do and whatnot, but that’s okay. The bulk of the work is over and for that I’m eternally grateful. Also, I’m never writing 2 books in 1 year again. (Ask me in 2018 and I guarantee I’ll do it again).

So now that the book writing’s over and the holidays have passed, it’s time to start shoving Valentine’s Day in yo faces. (Sorry not sorry!!)

And the perfect way to segue into Valentine’s Day is by giving you the recipe for this Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie. Let me just say: it’s awesome!

This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie is a simple and stunning dessert! A fudgy brownie "crust" topped with a light & fluffy strawberry pudding mousse and topped with chocolate-covered berries. Have your fruit and cover it in chocolate, too!I have a recipe very similar to this one in my new book, and my book recipe had me thinking – there are a lot of different flavor combinations here besides the one I used! And because of Valentine’s Day, I figured strawberry was an appropriate choice… and boy, was I right!

First, you bake your brownie. It’s essential to use an 8×8″ pan size pouch of brownie mix here. If you can’t find that, measure out about 2 cups brownie mix and add your ingredients (I’ll post the measurements in the recipe below!!)

This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie is a simple and stunning dessert! A fudgy brownie "crust" topped with a light & fluffy strawberry pudding mousse and topped with chocolate-covered berries. Have your fruit and cover it in chocolate, too!Bake your brownie and let it cool. Then, whip up your strawberry pudding layer. It’s literally strawberry pudding mix + milk. Then fold in some whipped cream (or Cool Whip if you fancy like me) and spread that goodness over the brownie layer.

The hardest part is letting this bad boy refrigerate for a few hours to set and get all purty and fab. But once it’s ready to cut, just try not to face plant it.

This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie is a simple and stunning dessert! A fudgy brownie "crust" topped with a light & fluffy strawberry pudding mousse and topped with chocolate-covered berries. Have your fruit and cover it in chocolate, too!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie
Author: 
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie is FANTASTIC! A fudgy brownie bottom, a fluffy & light strawberry pudding layer and it's topped off with chocolate covered strawberries and fresh whipped cream. So stunning and fabulous!
Ingredients
  • 1 frozen deep dish pie crust
  • 1 8x8" brownie mix pouch (See Note below), plus ingredients on back of pouch
  • 1 3.9 ounce box instant strawberry pudding mix
  • 1 & ½ cups milk
  • 1 (8 ounce) tub Cool Whip, thawed & divided
  • 6 chocolate-covered strawberries
  • Chocolate syrup
  • NOTE: If you cannot find the 8x8" pouch of brownie mix, use 2 cups of a fudge brownie mix and mix in ⅓ cup oil, 2 Tbsp water, and 1 egg)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place the deep dish frozen pie crust onto a rimmed baking sheet and prick the pie crust all over the bottom and sides of the crust with a fork. Set aside.
  2. Prepare the brownie mix according to package directions, or see the note above. Pour the brownie batter into the pie crust and smooth out the top. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs. Cool completely.
  3. Whisk together the dry pudding mix and milk until thickened, about 2 minutes. Fold in ¾ths of the Cool Whip until fluffy and light. Pour the strawberry mixture on top of the brownie layer and smooth out the top.
  4. Refrigerate the pie for at least 6 hours or until set.
  5. Just before serving, pipe or dollop the remaining Cool Whip around the perimeter of the pie and garnish with the chocolate-covered strawberries and chocolate syrup.

This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie is a simple and stunning dessert! A fudgy brownie "crust" topped with a light & fluffy strawberry pudding mousse and topped with chocolate-covered berries. Have your fruit and cover it in chocolate, too!Fudgy, sweet, chocolaty and bursting with juicy strawberry flavor, this pie will be your Valentine!

This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Brownie Pie is a simple and stunning dessert! A fudgy brownie "crust" topped with a light & fluffy strawberry pudding mousse and topped with chocolate-covered berries. Have your fruit and cover it in chocolate, too! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

No-Bake Eggnog Cream Pie

This No-Bake Eggnog Cream Pie is so perfect for the holidays! Creamy, smooth vanilla & nutmeg-flavored cream pie with a buttery graham cracker crust. Easy, impressive and a one of a kind dessert! For serious eggnog lovers only, this No-Bake Eggnog Cream Pie is fantastic! Creamy, smooth and loaded with eggnog flavor and spices piled high in a graham cracker crust. A must-make for the holidays!

Did everyone have a great Thanksgiving?!

We certainly did, but I am glad it’s over. Thanksgiving admittedly isn’t my favorite holiday, and while it’s nice to be with family, fielding some of their… inquisitions can be tiring 🙂 But of course, you can always avoid conversation by stuffing your face senseless with food. So there’s that.

Now we can move onto my favorite holiday: Christmas! There’s something so magical about Christmas that I just love. The music, the chilly air, the shopping (duh)… but also the flavors of Christmas. Eggnog, peppermint, gingerbread, hot cocoa… the list goes on.

And this pie is basically Christmas personified into a smooth & creamy pile of heavenly goodness.

AND! it couldn’t be easier to make. Seriously.

It starts with a package of instant French Vanilla pudding mix. If you can’t find French vanilla, then you can’t make it. KIDDING. Just use regular instant vanilla, but I like that French vanilla feels fancier. It’s like when you order a croissant, but instead of saying ‘croissant’, you say ‘cwesson’ like you’re French. Same thing pretty much.

In a bowl, you’ll whisk up your French vanilla pudding mix with eggnog in place of the milk. It’s really that easy, y’all. Whisk until it’s thick, then fold in some spices and Cool Whip, or fresh whipped cream (or creme, if you’re still fancy French) and pour that mishegas into a graham cracker crust.

This No-Bake Eggnog Cream Pie is so perfect for the holidays! Creamy, smooth vanilla & nutmeg-flavored cream pie with a buttery graham cracker crust. Easy, impressive and a one of a kind dessert! The most complicated part of this whole recipe is making sure it has plenty of time to set in the fridge. I’m talking at least four hours. I know, I know. But you can do it. I have faith.

Then serve it up with some more nog, as you do during the holidays.

Bottoms up!

This No-Bake Eggnog Cream Pie is so perfect for the holidays! Creamy, smooth vanilla & nutmeg-flavored cream pie with a buttery graham cracker crust. Easy, impressive and a one of a kind dessert!

5.0 from 2 reviews
No-Bake Eggnog Cream Pie
Author: 
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
This Eggnog Cream Pie could not be easier to whip up and it tastes JUST like eggnog: thick, creamy and smooth with spices and wonderful vanilla flavor.
Ingredients
  • 1 9" graham cracker pie crust (prepared, or homemade)
  • 1 (3.4-3.9 oz) box INSTANT French Vanilla pudding mix (or regular vanilla if you cannot find French Vanilla)
  • 2 cups eggnog
  • ½ tsp rum extract, optional but recommended
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed (or alternatively, you may use 2 cups freshly whipped cream)
  • Additional whipped cream for garnish, optional
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the instant dry pudding mix, eggnog, rum extract (if using) and nutmeg until thick, about 2 minutes. Fold in the Cool Whip or fresh whipped cream until fluffy and light. Spoon into the graham cracker pie crust and smooth out the top.
  2. Refrigerate the pie for at LEAST 4 hours, or overnight, to set.
  3. Just before serving, garnish with more whipped cream or Cool Whip and a sprinkling of nutmeg, if desired.

This No-Bake Eggnog Cream Pie is so perfect for the holidays! Creamy, smooth vanilla & nutmeg-flavored cream pie with a buttery graham cracker crust. Easy, impressive and a one of a kind dessert! I love the je ne sais quoi that the fresh nutmeg adds to this recipe – it just totally ramps up that eggnog flavor and makes this pie just as authentic as the drink itself.

This No-Bake Eggnog Cream Pie is so perfect for the holidays! Creamy, smooth vanilla & nutmeg-flavored cream pie with a buttery graham cracker crust. Easy, impressive and a one of a kind dessert! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

Pumpkin Pie Lush Dessert

This Pumpkin Pie Lush Dessert is such a fantastic no-bake treat! Layers of pecan shortbread cookies, fluffy pumpkin pudding, creamy whipped topping and crunchy pecans complete this fabulous fall treat. This Pumpkin Pie Lush Dessert is marvelous! Layers of pecan shortbread cookies, fluffy pumpkin spice pudding, creamy whipped topping and chopped pecans make for a delectable, easy, no-bake dessert!

If you know me, you know I love my lush desserts!

There’s something so fabulously easy and tasty about lushes. Or lush? Is it like ‘fish’ where the singular is also the plural? Lushies? That sounds terrible. I’ll stop.

It starts with a no-bake cookie crust that’s pressed into the pan and makes for a killer first layer. Then you mix up your favorite flavor of pudding (in this recipe, we use the seasonal pumpkin pudding mix!) and spread that goodness on top. Then finish it off with whipped cream (or Cool Whip if you’re fancy like me) and additional sprinklage – in this case, chopped pecans for some crunch, but to also tie in with the pecan shortbread cookie crust.

And y’all. This lush tastes just like a pumpkin pie but better, because cookie crusts rule all the land.

With holidays coming up quick, you’ll want to bookmark this recipe for your dessert spread! This would be a fabulous no-bake alternative to pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving, or any other day this fall that you are craving something fluffy, creamy, light, and ultra pumpkin-y.

Make it!!

***NOTE: Some people are having trouble finding the pumpkin instant pudding. It is seasonal, so that could be a problem. HOWEVER, you can use the following substitution: Substitute the pumpkin instant pudding for a box (3.4-3.9 oz) INSTANT vanilla pudding. Prepare with the milk and whisk in 1/2 cup – 3/4 cup pumpkin puree, depending on how pumpkin-y you want it. Also whisk in 1-2 tsp pumpkin pie spice to add more pumpkin flavor. Fold in the Cool Whip and follow the rest of the instructions.***

This Pumpkin Pie Lush Dessert is such a fantastic no-bake treat! Layers of pecan shortbread cookies, fluffy pumpkin pudding, creamy whipped topping and crunchy pecans complete this fabulous fall treat.

5.0 from 3 reviews
Pumpkin Pie Lush Dessert
Author: 
Recipe type: No Bake Treats
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 9
 
This Pumpkin Pie Lush Dessert is a fantastic alternative to pumpkin pie! No bake, easy to prepare and SO fluffy, creamy and delicious!
Ingredients
  • 1 pkg (11.3 oz) pecan sandie (shortbread) cookies, coarsely crushed
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, melted
  • 1 box instant pumpkin spice pudding mix
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 (16 oz) container Cool Whip, thawed
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
Instructions
  1. Grease a square 8x8" pan with cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl, toss together the coarse crumbs and melted butter until moistened. Press into the prepared pan. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the pudding mix, milk and pumpkin pie spice until thick, about 1 minute. Fold in 2 cups (8 oz) of the Cool Whip until combined. Spread the mixture into the prepared pan on top of the crust layer.
  3. Top the pumpkin layer with the remaining Cool Whip and sprinkle with the chopped pecans. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours or until set.

This Pumpkin Pie Lush Dessert is such a fantastic no-bake treat! Layers of pecan shortbread cookies, fluffy pumpkin pudding, creamy whipped topping and crunchy pecans complete this fabulous fall treat. Creamy, smooth and topped with toasty pecans, this is an excellent fall-inspired dessert!

This Pumpkin Pie Lush Dessert is such a fantastic no-bake treat! Layers of pecan shortbread cookies, fluffy pumpkin pudding, creamy whipped topping and crunchy pecans complete this fabulous fall treat. Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

Chai Apple Butter Pie

Chai Apple Butter Pie: a flavorful, EASY pie made with apple butter and chai spices. Perfect for the holidays as an alternative to pumpkin pie! Simple, silky-smooth, spicy, sweet and utterly fantastic! Attention, pumpkin pie haters! This Chai Apple Butter Pie is a wonderful alternative to pumpkin pie! Bursting with sweet apple butter and chai flavors, it’s perfect for the holidays.

Don’t be mad, but I’m totally on a chai kick right now.

There’s something so underrated about chai spices. I never see chai desserts, and I don’t frequently overhear people at coffee shops ordering chai.

In fact, I even struck up a conversation with a woman who also had ordered chai at our local coffee shop about how odd/awesome it was that she ordered chai. I also managed to simultaneously look like a total freaking CREEP for overhearing her order and questioning her about it. I only realized this in retrospect, which was probably a blessing since I would have turned beet red had I actually paid attention to her shifty eyes searching for a way out of this awkward conversation.

Is this why I don’t have friends?

Anywho, what I’m trying to say is, chai is one of my favorite drinks to order at coffee shops. There’s something so warming, comforting and familiar about chai. Maybe it’s the array of spices I know well, but when combined together create this power couple that’s just so alluring. Or maybe it’s because I have a knack of ordering the most expensive beverages next to frappuccinos.

When I think back, I don’t even remember the first time I tried chai. If I think back really hard, I *think* it’s when I used to belly dance in high school. Yes, that sentence was correct. I was a belly dancer. I am not anymore, because one day I actually watched myself in the mirror and realized I’m an atrocious dancer with zero rhythm. It was like Elaine Bennis was belly-dancing. All thumbs and kicks, no sexy ab-rolling or undulating.

Anyway, I remember that my belly dancing class had a small performance at a little dessert cafe that had a stage. We were all crammed onto this teeny stage, so much so that half of my dance moves were off-stage. (Probably for the best, as this wasn’t a comedy show and I’m afraid people would have laughed at my poor attempt at Shakira hippage). Afterward, I got a hot cup of chai and it just felt so soothing after a rousing performance. And since then, it’s been a favorite of mine.

Side note: that was also the first time I tried a cigarette. My mom had dropped me off at my dance studio and I was the only young person by like, at least 15-20 years. Someone in the group passed me their cigarette and wanting to fit in, I took a half-hearted drag and ended up not even smoking properly because when I blew like I was blowing a house down, no smoke came out and it was really awkward and I felt like everyone was like, “damn, this poor chick can’t dance for crap and she fails at smoking cigarettes.”

Also, I was so afraid my mom would think that my ~1 puff on a cigarette would make me reek of smoke, so on the way home from the performance I stuck my head out of the window hoping she wouldn’t smell cigarette smoke on my breath, because THAT’S NOT SUSPICIOUS AT ALL, HAYLEY.

So thanks, belly dancing. You made my abs look glorious even if I looked like a poor man’s white version of Shakira. And you introduced me to chai, which is forever my favorite. And you made me fail at smoking. Thanks for the memories.

Let’s get to this pie, shall we? It’s a riff on my Apple Butter Pie from last year but with those glorious chai flavors. If you don’t like pumpkin pie, this is a wonderful alternative because it has that creamy, smooth pumpkin pie texture but is flavored entirely with apple butter. And if you like chai, well, it’s a no brainer.

Chai Apple Butter Pie: a flavorful, EASY pie made with apple butter and chai spices. Perfect for the holidays as an alternative to pumpkin pie! Simple, silky-smooth, spicy, sweet and utterly fantastic!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Chai Apple Butter Pie
Author: 
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
This Chai Apple Butter Pie is a great alternative to pumpkin pie! Flavored with aromatic chai spices and smooth apple butter, it's a real winner for the holiday season.
Ingredients
  • 1 deep-dish 9" frozen pie crust, thawed
  • ½ cup apple butter (I love Musselman's)
  • 1 beaten egg
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • Whipped cream for garnish, optional but recommended
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Place the thawed pie crust pan onto a baking sheet to make it easier to remove from the oven. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the apple butter, beaten egg, sugar, flour, evaporated milk and spices until smooth. Pour into the prepared pie crust. I recommend using a pie crust shield at this point to prevent the crust from burning. If you do not have a pie crust shield, take strips of foil and tent around the pie crust edges.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F and bake for an additional 35-40 minutes or until the center of the pie is just about set. It may be slightly jiggly, but it won't be sloshing around. Cool completely, then refrigerate for about 2 hours to set. Just before serving, garnish with whipped cream.

Chai Apple Butter Pie: a flavorful, EASY pie made with apple butter and chai spices. Perfect for the holidays as an alternative to pumpkin pie! Simple, silky-smooth, spicy, sweet and utterly fantastic! Sweet, spicy and buttery-smooth with flavorful apple butter, this pie will be a staple at your holiday festivities!

Chai Apple Butter Pie: a flavorful, EASY pie made with apple butter and chai spices. Perfect for the holidays as an alternative to pumpkin pie! Simple, silky-smooth, spicy, sweet and utterly fantastic! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

 

Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin Pie Cake

Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin Pie Cake: a delightful mash-up between creamy pumpkin pie and fluffy cake that's studded with rich and gooey peanut butter cups and Reese's Pieces candies! A wonderful fall-favorite that's so easy to prepare!

This Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin Pie Cake is such a fun combination between creamy pumpkin pie and fluffy cake with delightful peanut butter cup flavor!

So if you’re on Facebook, you may have noticed a bunch of videos floating around for Pumpkin Pie Crunch Cake. Essentially, it’s a pumpkin pie base sprinkled with cake mix and melted butter and topped with crunchy pecans.

And it looks fabulous.

All these videos are going crazytown on Facebook right now because it’s fall and everyone’s going bonkers for pumpkin. (I mean, who doesn’t go bonkers for pumpkin?) Plus, the promising idea of pumpkin pie and cake worlds colliding? Simply beautiful.

So I figured I wanted a piece of the pie – er, cake – by making my own version of this infamous cake. Except my version is loaded with peanut butter candy goodness.

I’ll let that ruminate for a sec.

Back with me? Good. Because you’ll want to give this cake a try. If, ya know, you’re bonkers for pumpkin and peanut butter.

Now, before you naysayers come in and say pumpkin and peanut butter don’t go together, I implore you to please give it a try. Trust me, it is good stuff.

So this cake is really a cinch to make and I have a feeling you’ll be making it all fall-long. Well, you should be making it all fall-long, but that’s only because I’m right about everything. Natch.

For the base of the cake, you’ll whisk together some pumpkin, evaporated milk, eggs, sugar and pumpkin pie spice – just like you were making a pie. But instead of pouring it into a pie crust, you pour it into a greased 13×9″ baking pan.

Then you sprinkle the yellow cake mix all over the top of that goodness. Yup, you read it right – just the cake mix. Plain ol’ powdery cake mix. Nothing else, ‘kay? After you sprinkle all that stuff on top, top it with melted butter. Lots of melted butter, preferably. And then you’ll add a handful (or two. or five) of miniature Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, mini Reese’s Pieces, and peanut butter chips for good measure.

Bake it up and you’ll have this.

And trust me, it’s glorious.

Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin Pie Cake: a delightful mash-up between creamy pumpkin pie and fluffy cake that's studded with rich and gooey peanut butter cups and Reese's Pieces candies! A wonderful fall-favorite that's so easy to prepare!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin Pie Cake
Author: 
Recipe type: Cakes/Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 15
 
Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin Pie Cake: when two dessert staples collide, awesome things happen!
Ingredients
  • 1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree (just the puree, NOT the pie filling)
  • 1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 box yellow cake mix (just the dry powder mix)
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) melted butter
  • 2 cups chopped Reese's Peanut Butter Mini Cups
  • ¾ cup miniature Reese's Pieces candies
  • ¾ cup peanut butter chips
  • Whipped cream and additional Reese's Pieces candies for garnishing, if desired
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease a 13x9" baking pan with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, pumpkin pie spice, sugar, eggs and vanilla with a whisk until smooth. Pour into the prepared pan. Top with the dry yellow cake mix, sprinkling evenly over and entirely covering the top of the pumpkin pie layer. Drizzle the yellow cake mix layer with the melted butter. Top with scattered handfuls of the mini chopped peanut butter cups, miniature Reese's Pieces, and peanut butter chips.
  3. Bake uncovered for approximately 50-55 minutes or until the center is mostly set - it may wiggle slightly but you do not want to overbake it. Cool it completely, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours to set before cutting into slices. Just before serving, garnish with whipped cream and additional Reese's Pieces candies, if desired.

Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin Pie Cake: a delightful mash-up between creamy pumpkin pie and fluffy cake that's studded with rich and gooey peanut butter cups and Reese's Pieces candies! A wonderful fall-favorite that's so easy to prepare! Sweet, spicy and packed with peanut butter cup goodness! You won’t find another awesome cake mash-up like this!

Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin Pie Cake: a delightful mash-up between creamy pumpkin pie and fluffy cake that's studded with rich and gooey peanut butter cups and Reese's Pieces candies! A wonderful fall-favorite that's so easy to prepare! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies

Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies: delightfully crisp and chewy cookies that taste JUST like gooey pumpkin pie but with a glorious buttery spiced crumb topping! Only a few ingredients and so EASY to make! If you love pumpkin pie but can’t be trusted around a whole one, these Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies are the perfect solution! Bite-sized pumpkin pie cookies topped with a buttery, cinnamon-spiced crumb topping!

So lately on my Facebook page, people are coming out of the woodwork with CRAZINESS.

I feel like it’s a perpetual full moon out. Or maybe this new Zodiac sign is messing with everyone now that no one is what they’ve been since the dawn of time. (Whatever, NASA. I’m an #AquariusForLife. Ain’t no rocket scientists gonna convince me no how!)

But like, dude. Where are these people coming from and why are they saying such mean things on Facebook?

Just FYI, if you landed on this page by mistake or you’re seeing this from the Apple store where I infiltrate all the iPads and put my site up, this is a recipe blog. I post dessert recipes for FREE. Always have, always will. I make the recipes myself, unless otherwise specified, and I do everything on here. I write every word & every comment, take every picture, do everything. When you see me interacting on apps like Instagram and Twitter, it’s me – not a virtual assistant, a robot, or a genie. I work my booty off to make sure this site is running smoothly and that y’all get the dessert recipes you’ve come to know and love for 5 – almost 6 – years.

So WHERE and WHY do people say such mean things? I’m posting recipes. For cake. I’m not stirring the pot politically, or preaching an agenda (other than the agenda to make these darn cookies now). I’m Switzerland, baby.

And I get it: there are the internet trolls. I know, I’ve experienced them, with all their greasiness & such. But I’m talking about regular adults who don’t live in their grandma’s basement playing Sims until 4am. I’m talking about elderly folks who comment “Gross” and “Yuck” and “Disgusting” on my recipes.

Um. Last time I checked, my site was pretty much free of anything “disgusting.” It’s all desserts, not deep-fried crickets or road-kill quesadillas. Y’ALL. IT’S CUPCAKES AND COOKIES AND ICE CREAM. If you think that’s “yucky” or “ewwww” as some GROWN ADULTS TELL ME, you are in the wrong place and the rice cakes can be found on aisle 5. Get out.

Can we all agree that when I start posting opossum chili that we’ll keep the “icky” comments to ourselves? Okay, so you don’t like pumpkin pie. That is fine. Just bypass my pumpkin pie recipe and continue on with your life. It’s that simple. Trust me, the whole world doesn’t need to know your every opinion, and you come off looking a *little* bit silly saying “eww” when you have probably been able to vote in the last 15 elections. We are adults. Let’s please for the love of sprinkles act like them.

And that has been my friendly PSA.

Now, let’s talk COOKIES.

Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies: delightfully crisp and chewy cookies that taste JUST like gooey pumpkin pie but with a glorious buttery spiced crumb topping! Only a few ingredients and so EASY to make! These taste just like pumpkin pie because, well, they’re made with pie crust and pumpkin pie mix for starters. They are SO easy and wonderful if you’re looking for a change of recipe than your regular ol’ pumpkin pie. This would also be a great recipe to save for the holidays for cookie exchanges!

Make ’em, eat ’em, LOVE THEM.

Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies: delightfully crisp and chewy cookies that taste JUST like gooey pumpkin pie but with a glorious buttery spiced crumb topping! Only a few ingredients and so EASY to make!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies
Author: 
Recipe type: Cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 36
 
These Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies taste just like miniature pumpkin pies but in COOKIE form! Delicious bites of heaven made easy with shortcut ingredients.
Ingredients
  • 1 pkg (2-count) refrigerated pie crust, at room temperature
  • 2 cups pumpkin pie mix (not plain puree; you want the premade mix in a can)
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • FOR CRUMB:
  • 1 & ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup old-fashioned oats
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease two 12-cavity standard muffin pans with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. On a clean, flat work surface, unroll one of the pie crusts. Using a 2" or 3" round biscuit cutter, cut out circles - as many as you can. You may yield less circles if using a larger cutter. I used a 2" cutter. Repeat with the second pie crust and re-roll crusts to cut more if needed. You should get about 36 circles.
  3. Gently flatten a pie crust circle in the palm of your hand to stretch it out slightly. Place into the bottom of a muffin cup and up the sides slightly. Repeat with remaining pie crust circles. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together the pumpkin pie mix, pumpkin pie spice and maple syrup. Drop heaping Tablespoonfuls of pumpkin pie mix on top of each pie crust.
  4. To make the crumble, in a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice and melted butter until crumbs form. Drop heaping Tablespoonfuls of crumble on top of each cookie. You will pretty much want to make the muffin cavity flush with the rest of the pan by filling it with crumb.
  5. Bake for approximately 20-25 minutes or until the cookies are golden brown and slightly bubbly. Cool in the pans for about 20 minutes before gently running a butter knife around the edges of the cookie and releasing.

Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies: delightfully crisp and chewy cookies that taste JUST like gooey pumpkin pie but with a glorious buttery spiced crumb topping! Only a few ingredients and so EASY to make! Buttery, spicy, sweet and topped with that glorious crumble, these Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies are such a fun twist on pumpkin pie and cookies!

Pumpkin Crumb Pie Cookies: delightfully crisp and chewy cookies that taste JUST like gooey pumpkin pie but with a glorious buttery spiced crumb topping! Only a few ingredients and so EASY to make! Want more pumpkin goodness? Check out these pumpkin recipes from the archives!

This No-Bake Pumpkin Marshmallow Pie is such an easy recipe! Fluffy, packed with pumpkin spice and so simple to whip up. Great for fall weather and holidays!No-Bake Pumpkin Marshmallow Pie

This Pumpkin Spice Sheet Cake is AMAZING! Moist, rich and packed with pumpkin flavor and topped with a cream cheese icing. Perfect for feeding a crowd!Pumpkin Spice Sheet Cake

These Pumpkin Spice Candied Nuts are easy, foolproof and taste like fall! You don't want to miss this delicious recipe!Slow Cooker Pumpkin Spice Candied Nuts

Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

White Chocolate Velvet Pie

No Bake White Chocolate Velvet Pie: a creamy, silky-smooth no-bake pie that's packed with white chocolate. So easy, impressive and utterly delicious! This White Chocolate Velvet Pie is so silky-smooth, creamy and utterly white chocolaty! Perfect for any white chocolate lover.

So, confession: this isn’t my recipe.

It’s actually my friend Joan’s recipe, from her site, Chocolate, Chocolate & More.

Joan was a dear friend of mine in real life and in this crazy big, crazy weird world of blogging. She lit up every room she walked into. I know that’s totally cliche and like, everyone says that about their friend/mom/dog, but Joan truly was a beaming light with an effervescence about her that was so intoxicating and charming.

She had an infectious Southern accent and attitude about her that was so appealing to Miss California over here. She was as sweet as sugar and would make you feel your very best whenever you were around her, but if you done goofed, she’d be the first to call you out on it but from more of a, “I know you did this – what were you thinking?” good-natured place rather than a judgey place.

She was quick-witted, sharp-tongued and laser-focused on her blog, her business, her brand, and most importantly, her three kids, whom she just adored. Every time I was around her, she’d beam whenever she spoke of them, so proud to be their mom and champion in life.

She was a mogul when it came to her business. She had over 1 million Facebook fans and counting and was never stingy or shy about her practices, her successes, her failures… hell, she was like, the least shy person in the world. If you asked her a straight-forward question about anything: personal life, business tactics, you name it – she’d give you a no-bullshit answer. She was real, she was tough, but that’s why her business was such a screaming success – because people connected with that authenticity of the person behind the blog. People felt like they knew Joan, even if they’d only ever seen her Facebook page avatar. She had the uncanny ability to make anyone feel welcome, even if she barely knew your name.

She was 49 when she died suddenly last year of a heart attack, and would have celebrated her 50th birthday this Saturday, September 24.

I’ve kept this inside for so long – almost a year now, in October – and finally I feel like I can say it. I was mad at her before and when she died. Very mad, and confused, and saddened. And looking back now, it was so trivial, but at the time, it really upset me.

What happened was, we had attended the IFBC Food Conference in Seattle last September. She knew I was coming as we’d talked about it and she and I had even planned to do a chocolate-tasting tour through Seattle with some other blogger friends before one of the sessions started. I was so excited to see her, as I hadn’t seen her since that April.

The next night after our chocolate tour, a blogger asked me if I was going to a brand dinner that night – one Joan had orchestrated. Confused, I said no – I wasn’t invited. The blogger also looked confused and a little awkward, like oh shit, what did I just say? And I felt the same way, like oh shit, why was I not invited to this?

Turns out, almost every blogger Joan was friends with went to this dinner… except me. I was not invited. I was not invited. I repeated that phrase throughout my head the entire night as I ate dinner alone. At first, I was fuming mad – what the hell had I done to her? And then I was confused – what had happened to cause her to overlook me? I mean, I’m not exactly the shy imp in the corner – I’m easily memorable – right? And then annoyed – fine, they can all have their fun without me. It’s whatever. Seeing the photos of all my blogger friends laughing and smiling and having a helluva time at dinner – at a dinner Joan didn’t invite me to – made it even worse.

Later that night, I saw Joan and some blogger friends (ones who actually were invited to dinner, I bitterly thought to myself) in the hotel lobby. They were laughing and drinking wine and called me over. I protested and said I wanted to go to bed – it was maybe 8 or 9pm. Joan chuckled and said, “come hang out with us!” But I was too angry at her to want to hang out. Oh, now you want to hang out with me?, I thought. I went to my room that night and cried.

Joan would die not a month later.

I remember Dorothy texting me and asking me if I knew what had happened to Joan. I said I didn’t, and when she told me, I was shocked. The air literally left my lungs and I was stunned into silence. I got that weird ball of emotions stuck in the back of my throat – the one that feels like you’re regurgitating a ball of yarn. I couldn’t believe it. She was literally here one day and gone the next. How could this happen?

Unbeknownst to me, other bloggers were planning on posting a recipe dedicated to #ChocolateForJoan the week after she died. I wasn’t invited until about a day before it was set to post. I didn’t have time to post that next day.

I feverishly rushed to the store to get ingredients for my post while everyone else shared their stories of Joan and each other’s recipes on their blogs. I was making my recipe when people were mourning together. I felt so alone while everyone found solace in each other during this confusing time. Especially since I was still dealing with unresolved feelings from a month prior, feelings, I felt, that no one would understand.

My mom had told me to reach out to Joan – “maybe it was an oversight? Or maybe she only could invite a number of people? Or maybe she did forget – we’re human,” she said. “Reach out to her and let her know that it hurt your feelings and to see if you two are okay.”

I never sent that email, because Joan died before I could compose my thoughts and write it.

Were we okay? Was the last memory she had of me the one where I stormed off to my room at the hotel? Were the last feelings she felt when she thought of me tension and annoyance?

The thoughts troubled me for a long time. They only recently faded away when I became so preoccupied with my own life: writing my cookbook in 2 months, managing my blog, becoming a “new mom” to a new dog and a mom to Mannie, everything else. Until recently, when a blogger mentioned we all make one of Joan’s recipes for a post this week in tribute of her birthday. Until I realized it’s been almost a year since Joan died, almost a year since I felt these same feelings of shame, confusion, misunderstanding, disappointment… in myself. It’s a pretty big pill to swallow, but one I have to. One I have to because life goes on and I cannot remain stuck in the past, and one I have to because Joan would want me to.

It only made me realize now that she would want me to move on. Joan didn’t dwell, and she didn’t do dwelling with others. She was a, “fuck that and let’s go eat chocolate” kinda person. And now I am going to pull myself up and swallow that pill and know that for whatever reason, things happened. I don’t know why she didn’t invite me to that dinner and I don’t care. What she did know – because I told her many times before – was that I found her to be an amazing, resilient, compassionate, whip-smart inspiration of a woman and someone I looked up to. And I know now that if I had written that email to her, she would have apologized and suggested we move on because she loved me and always would and everything would be right again.

So Joan, I am so sorry. I’m sorry I was mad at you, I’m sorry I doubted our friendship for one second. I’m sorry that I chose to pout and cry alone rather than accept your invite to hang out. I’m sorry I allowed there to be a thick fog of tension in our friendship, and I’m sorry I didn’t say sorry sooner.

So here we are, present day. I know Joan would be thrilled that her friends were making her recipes. And I was thrilled to make it. After all, this recipe came from a dessert genius and a woman who knew her chocolate, so anything less than perfect wouldn’t have made the cut.

No Bake White Chocolate Velvet Pie: a creamy, silky-smooth no-bake pie that's packed with white chocolate. So easy, impressive and utterly delicious! This White Chocolate Velvet Pie is now one of my favorites; One, because I love white chocolate-anything, and two, because it’s so easy to make, and it makes me happy knowing that Joan concocted it in her crazy-wonderful brain. Also, it’s no-bake, which is always a winner in my book.

Joan, thanks for the memories, recipes, and laughter. You’re sorely missed.

No Bake White Chocolate Velvet Pie: a creamy, silky-smooth no-bake pie that's packed with white chocolate. So easy, impressive and utterly delicious! *recipe from Chocolate, Chocolate & More 

4.8 from 5 reviews
White Chocolate Velvet Pie
Author: 
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
This easy, no-bake White Chocolate Velvet Pie is my new favorite go-to pie recipe! Silky, smooth, creamy and filled to the brim with chocolaty goodness!
Ingredients
  • 1 prepared Oreo crust
  • 1 & ½ cups white chocolate chips
  • 1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy cream, plus ⅓ cup
Instructions
  1. In a large microwaveable bowl, melt the white chocolate chips and the ⅓ cup of heavy cream on HIGH power for about 25 seconds. Stir, then heat again for about 10 seconds. Stir until melted and smooth. Cool slightly.
  2. Add the cream cheese and vanilla to the melted and cooled white chocolate mixture and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for about 1-2 minutes or until fluffy and incorporated. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream with the whisk attachment on HIGH speed for about 4-6 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture until incorporated.
  4. Spread the pie filling into the prepared pie crust and refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours or until set. Just before serving, cut into wedges and garnish with fresh fruit, if desired.

No Bake White Chocolate Velvet Pie: a creamy, silky-smooth no-bake pie that's packed with white chocolate. So easy, impressive and utterly delicious! Creamy, ultra silky & smooth and just loaded with chocolaty goodness, this is one pie recipe you don’t want to skip out on!

No Bake White Chocolate Velvet Pie: a creamy, silky-smooth no-bake pie that's packed with white chocolate. So easy, impressive and utterly delicious! Have a super sweet day!

xo, Hayley

 

 

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