Rice Krispy Treat Donuts

RKTdonutsSometimes when I’m bored, I’ll look up local listings on Zillow.

I live in an upper-middle-class neighborhood that has very affluent neighborhoods sprinkled throughout the city.  And those more affluent neighborhoods tend to have McMansions the size of a small African country.

Occasionally, I’ll walk, hike or bike near these McMansions and stare at them wistfully, wishing I had rich friends or could afford to step foot through the grand double doors of each property, if only just to be creepy and look around.  But I’m pretty sure to even step foot into the gated community, you are forbidden to have a bank balance of -$0.11, which rules me out as a guest.

That’s where Zillow comes in.  I can get my kicks at checking out these homes without actually having to fork over the buttons I keep in my change purse because I long for the clink of actual currency.  So I check out current listings for the mansions selling in my area and I quickly become… disappointed.

You see, my city is a wannabe Orange County, with the wannabe Real Housewives who come with it.  I’m talking Barbie-esque women in their forties driving sparkling Range Rovers who wear blingy jeans that cost more than my junior college tuition.  And you’d think with all this money and these huge, sprawling homes they’d have some sense of style, right?  Maybe hire the local Pottery Barn designer?


Because every house has the tackiest, most disgusting interiors I’ve ever seen.  Not sordid-disgusting, but that what-in-the-world-were-they-thinking disgusting that leaves you kind of hopeful that they’re actually a really nice, really rich blind family which would explain their poor lack of styling choices.

Everything is in that horrid burnt sienna color and either has a terrible Tuscan vibe (if Tuscany was a crappy wannabe OC town with cheap furniture) or an atrocious “faux posh” look, like with unnecessary metal fixtures hanging on the walls (I don’t even) and hideous paintings that even Goodwill would turn away.

Like I seriously don’t understand why these millionaires hang fake grape leaves from the gigantic, for-show pillars in their foyers.  Or why they paint everything in that tacky burnt-sienna color.  Or why every piece of bedroom furniture is that same shade of blah and looks more gaudy than a queen at Drag Queen Bingo.  Why, rich people, why?!?

And while I realize that most of these hideous flaws are merely things that could and will change, like furniture and paint color, it still ruins the entire experience for me.  I were to buy the house, I’d almost feel like it was haunted with terrible taste.  That suddenly I’d see my sleek kitchen as some homely kitchen from the 80s, or my modern mirrored furniture would look like a chunky lumberjack armoire.  It’s just… not okay.

DSC_0041AAnd since those people have terrible taste, they’d probably turn their noses up at the best tasting thing there is: these Rice Krispy Treat Donuts.  Hello, they’re donuts with Rice Krispies on top.  What could be better?!  While at Psycho Donuts a couple weeks ago (I blogged about THESE, too!) I tried their ‘Mellow Submarine’ which was a cake donut topped with RKT components… and I was hooked!  They have such awesome texture and taste like a giant, fluffy Rice Krispy.

You, my friend, can definitely afford to eat these!  🙂


5.0 from 2 reviews
Rice Krispy Treat Donuts
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
These fat, pillowy cake donuts are topped with gooey marshmallow creme, crisp rice cereal and a healthy drizzle of chocolate to make them taste like giant, fluffy Rice Krispy Treats!
  • 4 cake donuts (prepared yourself, or from your favorite local donut shop), unglazed
  • ½ cup marshmallow creme
  • 1 cup Rice Krispies cereal
  • 1 square chocolate Candiquik, for drizzling
  1. Place the donuts on a foil-lined tray or plate and set aside. Meanwhile, spoon the marshmallow creme into a microwaveable bowl and microwave for about 30 seconds, or until smooth and mostly melted but still thick.
  2. Pour the cereal into a cereal bowl and set aside. Dip each donut into the marshmallow creme, coating the top of the donut completely and allowing excess to drip off. Transfer the wet donut to the cereal and dredge it into the cereal, coating the marshmallow creme completely with Rice Krispies. Return the donuts to the baking tray.
  3. Melt the chocolate until smooth and pour it into a small resealable bag. Seal out the air, snip off a corner of the bag and drizzle the chocolate evenly over each donut. Allow the chocolate to set, about 5 mins, before serving. This recipe is easily doubled.

DSC_0035aThese donuts are sure to become a new family favorite in your home!  No one can resist the gooey sweetness of a Rice Krispy Treat, but slather it on a donut and you’re in heaven!  Each bite is a divine combination of all of those awesome flavors and textures.  The softness of the cake donut.  The crispiness of the cereal.  The sweet stickiness of the marshmallow creme.  It all comes together so harmoniously to create one seriously memorable donut.

Love Rice Krispies?  Be sure to check out these bites!

RKTcheesecakeNo-Bake Rice Krispy Treat Oreo Marshmallow Cheesecake

100grand100 Grand Rice Krispy Bark

krispycupcakeRice Krispy Cupcakes

Have a sweet day!!

xo, Hayley

Butterfinger Maple Bars

butterfingermapleA couple weeks ago I attended the BlogHer ’14 conference in San Jose, CA.

Since San Jose is only a couple hours from me, I drove down early and decided I would explore the city for a little bit before my friends showed up.  It wasn’t until I was down there in downtown San Jose that I realized San Jose isn’t really a hoppin’ tourist attraction and my motel was kind of in a shady area.  It wouldn’t be exploring so much as surviving if you know what I mean.

So while wandering the streets of a strange city, I happened upon a donut shop called Psycho Donuts.  First: it was a donut shop, so you know I had to stop in.  Second: it had eyeball lamps, the staff wore old-school nurse caps and they had insane donuts like ‘Jekyll & Hyde’ and ‘Dead Elvis’ which meant I had to buy a half-dozen for myself to enjoy alone.

Just so you know, people will look at you oddly when you’re sitting in a corner of a donut shop eating a half-dozen donuts by yourself.  But if you’re like me, you won’t even care.  Because donuts.  An explosion could happen right outside and I would have been eyeball-deep in my banana split donut (yes, that’s a thing!).

DSC_0051ABut one of my favorite donuts from this face-stuffing experiment in my donut-eating ability?  The Marla, a maple bar topped with crushed Butterfinger candy bars.  You wouldn’t really think to pair maple with Butterfingers together, but then again, you probably didn’t think to make chocolate donuts with red icing “blood” on them either (and that donut was good, too!).  And oh my god — this donut is life-changing, y’all.  Butterfingers and maple are soooo meant to be together, and denying them that right is kind of unconstitutional.

Just like bypassing this recipe would be really, grossly inhumane of you.  Because man, you need these donuts in your life.  I’m serious.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a date with a half-dozen donuts.


5.0 from 1 reviews
Butterfinger Maple Bars
Recipe type: Donuts
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
These kickass donuts combine warm maple flavors with crushed Butterfinger candies for an exciting, delicious twist on a classic donut favorite!
  • 6 maple bars, prepared (I used some from my favorite local donut shop, but feel free to make your own if you'd like!)
  • 4 full-size Butterfinger candy bars, chopped
  • 2 squares Candiquik
  1. Microwave the maple bars for about 20 seconds or until the frosting has softened some.
  2. Gently press a handful of the crushed Butterfinger candies into the softened maple icing; set aside. Meanwhile, melt the Candiquik squares until smooth.
  3. Drizzle the Candiquik evenly over the donuts and top with more crushed Butterfinger candies. Serve immediately.

DSC_0056AThese donuts are a breeze to make — simply pick up a handful of maple bars from your favorite local donut shop and get to bedazzling with those candy bars!  They’re fun to make with the kids, too, since they can press the Butterfingers on (and lick the crumbs off their hands after!).  I made these on Sunday morning and they were gone within minutes.  They’re so addicting!

Have a fantastical day!!

xo, Hayley



Glazed Donut Pie

glazeddonutpieThere are only been a small handful of times where I’ve been outright discriminated against.

Once as a Girl Scout, when my troop was out camping near a river.  The river had a sign that said “No Wading” and the girls with me said “no wadding?” but pronounced it like “wah-ding” so I gently said, “it says no wading” (pronounced “way-ding”).  The girls argued with me for a moment and I was so over their crap that I asked the nearest adult who confirmed my pronunciation was correct.  The girls decided to recruit the other scouts to gang up on me after that and judged me for my proper grammar.  It was inevitably one of the reasons why I dropped out of Girl Scouts — also because brown is so not my color.

Next was the time when one of the managers at a prior job told me I couldn’t wear skulls because they were offensive.  When I gently explained that I celebrate Dia de Los Muertos, a Mexican cultural holiday that celebrates the dead, she was like, “well I’m Mexican and I don’t even celebrate that holiday, so you can’t wear skulls.”  And I was like, “okay.. well I really don’t care what your nationality is but thanks for the background info, and bee tee dubs, I’m still wearing skulls mkay?” And she was all, “I’m going to fire you for wearing skulls!” and I was all “do it!” And she did, so I filed a suit against the workplace.  For someone with a skull, she sure didn’t use it well.

And then, while attending the BlogHer 2014 conference in San Jose, CA this past weekend.  At one of the parties I attended, there was a catered breakfast complete with a made-to-order omelet bar on one side of the room and your standard lineup of other breakfast fare on the other side.

Since I am not one to turn down free food and since it’s a well known fact that vacation calories don’t count, I immediately loaded up on hashbrowns, donuts, fruit and sausage from the other side and hopped in the omelet line for a custom creation.  While the omelet-making woman prepared one omelet, she’d ask the next person in line what they wanted and started searing their mixins.  So as she whipped up Trish’s omelet, I patiently waited for her to ask me what mixins I would like.

And she never did.

So I gently said I would like chopped ham, onions, pico de gallo and cheese, aka the exact same thing Trish got.  The omelet-making woman looked me dead in the eye and pointed behind me to the table of other breakfast fare.  “You can get your breakfast over there,” she said.  I looked at her, then Trish, then the breakfast fare, then Dorothy, and back at omelet-woman.  She was insistent.  “There’s breakfast over there,” she said again, pointing to the other table.

So Trish piped in, “but she wants the same omelet that I had with the mixins right here.”  The omelet-woman was like whatever Trish and continued to tell me I could get my breakfast elsewhere.  I pondered what I could have possibly done wrong to offend the omelet-woman; perhaps mumble aloud that I liked scrambles better?  I don’t know.  It wasn’t like I insulted her long family lineage of omelet-making or her omelet-making skills or anything.  In fact, I marveled at how cheesy and delicious every omelet before mine had looked.

I asked the omelet-nazi, formerly known as omelet-woman, why I couldn’t have an omelet.  “But I want an omelet from here,” I said.  “But I want ham, onion, pico and cheese, please,” I said.  “Why can’t I have an omelet?” I asked.  The omelet-nazi-woman was like, “we have hashbrowns over there, sausage, granola…” clearly avoiding this whole Hayley-omelet subject which quickly became a thing since now Trish and Dorothy were like, “but she wants an omelet!” and the omelet-woman was all “whatever bitches, I don’t need you!” as she dramatically dropped the skillets to the floor, threw up a deuce and bounced.  Not really, but that would have been cool.

So FINALLY coming to terms with the fact that I would clearly never get an omelet from this omelet-nazi woman, she finally asks what I want in my omelet.  I’m not sure what gave her a change of heart since usually omelet-nazis stick to their guns (or rather, rubber spatulas) but I was finally able to get my omelet.  And sadly, it was really anticlimactic because it was decent, but looked nothing like Trish’s omelet and was just kind of meh, probably because I had to work abnormally hard at begging for glorified scrambled eggs with onions in them.

But ultimately, I’m glad I stood up for myself against the miscreant omelet woman because if I ever want to move forward as a person I must challenge my demons and stand up for what’s right.  Stand my ground and tell that omelet-woman I’m not backing down without a fight.  And that for the thousandth time, no, I don’t want hashbrowns and sausage.  I want a mother effing omelet.  This is America.  It’s my right.  Girl power.

DSC_0940AAnd besides the omelet, the breakfast had catered some donuts as well which turned out to be infinitely better than any freshly-but-begrudgingly made omelet could be.  Soft, puffy, plush and super glazed, I was in donut heaven.  So I created a pie to mimic that same heavenly mental state after I bit into that pillowy donut — and after managing to defeat the omelet-woman.

Fight on!!


5.0 from 2 reviews
Glazed Donut Pie
Recipe type: Pie
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
This donut pie tastes like a gigantic glazed cake donut and is utterly irresistible.
  • 2 dozen glazed cake donut holes
  • 1 refrigerated pie crust, room temperature
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • Pinch cinnamon
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract, divided
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1-3 Tbsp milk
  • Sprinkles
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly spray a 9" pie plate with cooking spray. Press the pie crust gently into the pan and crimp the edges as desired.
  2. Halve the donut holes and fill the pie crust with the donut holes in an even layer; set aside. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the melted butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, eggs and ONE teaspoon of the vanilla. Pour the mixture evenly over the donut holes to coat.
  3. Bake the pie for approximately 30-35 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. I highly recommend using a pie shield or tenting the crust of the pie to prevent burning and overbaking too quickly. Allow the pie to cool completely.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine the remaining two teaspoons of vanilla, powdered sugar and milk; vigorously stir to combine. Drizzle the icing on top of the pie and immediately garnish with sprinkles. Cut into slices and serve room temperature or warmed up.

DSC_0934AThis pie is a donut-lovers dream come true!  The entire thing tastes like a gigantic, THICK slice of a glazed cake donut.  Sweet, lightly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg, and swirled with thick vanilla icing.  Completely irresistible and worth every calorie!  If you’re feeling extra indulgent, top with ice cream and chocolate syrup.  Or consider using chocolate donut holes for a richer pie.  Pie for everyone!!

Have a fantastical Monday!!

xo, Hayley



Easy Vanilla Cake Donuts

vanillacakedonutI am a donut fiend.

Maple bars, old fashioned, cream-filled, sprinkle cake.. I love them all so very much.  I am an equal-opportunist donut eater & lover.

Usually, I’m not much a fan of making donuts at home.  Why?  Because it either takes too much work OR I find that they don’t taste the same as the ones at the bakery, even if I do fry them.  Why donuts have to be so complicated, I’ll never know.

But when I found this recipe for vanilla cake donuts, I figured I’d give it a shot.  I was desperate, hungry, and craving something smothered in sprinkles.  A sprinkly vanilla cake donut was kind of a no-brainer.  And this recipe?  Foolproof, y’all.  Never will you ever find donut making to be arduous again.

DSC_0218ALemme break down this donut science for you.  These donuts are baked, not fried, which A) makes them more figure-friendly, and B) makes them super light and tender on the inside.  That tenderness because this recipe contains some cake flour, which tends to be lighter and creates a more tender product since it has a finer texture and a higher starch content than regular all-purpose flour.  And if you subscribe to the belief that baked donuts aren’t as soft and moist as fried donuts, I have news for you: this recipe totally blows that theory out of the water, homie.  There’s nothing dry or crumbly about these plush, chewy donuts… which makes them incredibly difficult to resist.

Can we eat already?  I’m starving.

DSC_0217A*adapted from The Baker’s Field Guide to Doughnuts

5.0 from 4 reviews
Easy Vanilla Cake Donuts
Recipe type: Donuts
Serves: 12
I love donuts, but making them at home can be arduous and not produce the same texture and flavor I love from my donut-shop staples. These Easy Vanilla Cake Donuts will debunk that thought with each soft, tender and moist bite of this vanilla-scented donut!
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cake flour, sifted if clumpy
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ stick butter, cold and cut into cubes
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • Rainbow sprinkles, for garnishing
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease TWO 6-cavity donut pans with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and nutmeg together until combined. Begin cutting the butter into the flour mixture using a pastry blender, fork, or electric mixer or until combined and sandy in texture. Try to make sure the butter is as evenly distributed as possible.
  3. Whisk the eggs in a medium bowl until frothy, then stir in the sour cream and vanilla. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and begin stirring to combine.
  4. Scrape the batter into a large zip-top baggy and seal out the air OR scrape batter into a piping bag attached with a large open tip. Snip a corner off of the baggy and pipe the donut batter into the donut pan cavities about ⅔ full. Gently tap the donut pans on the counter to dislodge any bubbles.
  5. Bake for approximately 9-11 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Allow the donuts to sit in the pan for about 5 minutes before gently removing (by turning the pan upside down and gently shaking the pan).
  6. To make the glaze, bring the powdered sugar, water, and vanilla together in a small pot over medium heat until melted and combined. Dip each donut into the glaze, allowing excess to drip off. Immediately sprinkle with rainbow sprinkles as the glaze hardens VERY quickly. Reheat the glaze/add more milk as necessary to keep it smooth.

DSC_0223ASimple, quick, and tastes like a bakery donut.  Can’t ask for much else!  Except maybe some more sprinkles because obviously.

Have a fantastical day!!

xo, Hayley

Homemade Churros


You guys.

I just did something ground-breaking.  I made churros at home.  And they actually taste like churros!

You know when you get something super-cool and fun, like a snow-cone machine and think I’m going to be eating cherry snow cones at home for the remainder of my lifeeeee!  But then you operate it and it gives you like, two shards of ice and the cherry juice just isn’t as good as from when you get it from the ice cream shop… thus, you’ve wasted all this money on this lame snow-cone machine for fake, wannabe snow cones.

Or if you go on vacation and the restaurant makes an AMAZING risotto and once you have the recipe you think, I’ll be making this nightly?  But then when you make it, it’s all not as delicious?

Or maybe I am just terrible at doing things?  It’s possible.

But anyways, I finally mastered the churro.  Before I’ve made churro imposters, like Churro Bugle Mix and Churro Donuts, both of which taste INCREDIBLE (they’re actually some of my favorites on the site!) but aren’t actual churros.

I wanted an unmistakable churro.  Something piping hot made of fresh, light pastry dough, fried until golden and dusted copiously with cinnamon and sugar.  Something that had that signature crunch when you bite into it, but has a light and airy dough inside that soaks up all that sugary goodness.  And then I met these.

DSC_0210ALet’s just say, they’re even better at home because A) they’re cheaper, B) they’re easy to make, and C) you can eat as many as you want without the churro vendor judging you.  It’s a win-win, folks.

DSC_0212A*churro recipe from The Baker’s Field Guide to Doughnuts by Dede Wilson

5.0 from 2 reviews
Homemade Churros
Recipe type: Donuts
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
With Cinco de Mayo approaching, treat your family to a Mexican favorite: the churro! These tasty, fried tubes of dough are surprisingly simple to whip up at home and taste like the authentic deal.
  • 1 cup water
  • 6 Tbsp butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ⅛ tsp ground cinnamon
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Cinnamon sugar for dusting (mix about 1 cup white sugar with 1-2 tsp cinnamon and stir together)
  1. Place the water, butter, sugar and salt in a medium-sized saucepan and bring to a rolling boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, quickly stir in the flour at once with a wooden spoon, stirring until the dough comes together. Place the saucepan over very low heat and keep stirring the dough to dry it out. The dough will begin to pull away cleanly from the pan -- which is when it is ready.
  2. Place the dough into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat the dough on medium speed and begin adding the eggs one at a time, until incorporated. Beat in the vanilla and the cinnamon. The dough will be smooth, golden yellow and somewhat firm.
  3. Spoon the dough into a piping bag attached with a large star tip. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan or deep skillet, heat about 3-4 inches of oil over medium-high heat until a thermometer reaches about 350 degrees F OR until a small drop of water causes the oil to sizzle.
  4. Pipe strips of churro dough into the hot oil, using scissors to snip off the flow. Careful not to overflow the pan; only cook about 5 churros at a time, depending on the size of your pan or skillet. Allow the churros to cook about 1-2 minutes on each side before turning and cooking for another 1-2 minutes. The churros will be puffy and golden brown.
  5. Remove the churros with a slotted spoon or tongs and place onto a paper-towel-lined baking sheet or plate to drain briefly. Immediately roll the hot churros into the cinnamon sugar mixture and serve. The churros are best served immediately.

DSC_0213AChurros are actually made of a dough called pate a choux, which happens to be cream puff dough.  Not only is the star shape of the churros a classic look, but the ridges in the freshly fried dough allow the cinnamon sugar to cling to the pastry better, filling every nook and cranny with that sugary goodness.  As most of you know, churros are usually sold at fairs, carnivals and theme parks, but they’re often found at street vendors on the streets of Mexico and Spain where they typically enjoy them for breakfast!  They even include thick, pudding-like dipping sauces like chocolate or dulce de leche, which is a nice touch if you’re feeling extra indulgent.  However, I prefer mine straight-up — there’s nothing like a hot and airy churro!

These would be AWESOME for Cinco de Mayo (May 5!)

Love Churros?  Then you’ll adore these other churro-inspired treats…

sopapillaSopapilla Cheesecake Bars

churrodonutChurro Donuts

BUGLEChurro Bugle Mix

Have a fantastical day!

xo, Hayley

Donut Bird Nests

donutbirdsI have been SO ANXIOUS to share this adorable idea with you guys and today is the day!

If you’re a blogger (or an avid reader of blogs) you know that bloggers usually bake holiday treats a good month to a month in a half prior to the holiday actually happening.  That means Christmas cookies are baked on Halloween, Easter is basically done before St. Patrick’s Day (which is usually done the second Valentine’s Day candy actually comes out) and so on.  We’re like a magazine — we gotta be ahead of the times, people.  No one actually bakes Christmas cookies on Christmas anymore, do they?  {Or am I just depriving my family of their holidays?  Don’t answer that}.

Thankfully, my family is used to eating Halloween candy before October 31st even appears in the same calender month and thankfully they have no objections (and if they did, I would probably question my actual genetic relation to them because who complains about candy?)

HOOOOWEVER, whenever a new holiday rears its ugly head I get really super duper anxious.  So anxious that my mind completely blanks on things to bake.  I feel like everyone and their crafty mother has some genius way of using the newest flavor of what-have-you candy or has crafted the most gorgeous something for whatever-holiday before I can even COMPREHEND which holiday I should be baking for.

This usually means I stand in the candy/seasonal aisle of Target for a good HOUR just STARING at the candy like some lunatic, waiting for the sugar gods to send me some philosophical message of truth so I can get my life back on track and start baking Easter eggs or whatever.  Plus, I feel like I’ve baked enough crazy junk on this blog to know that I can’t skirt by with some chocolate chip cookie with springtime chocolate chips in it and have it pass as genius.  I set the bar high and I know you guys expect more from me which motivates me to be a better blogger and baker, but also motivates me to drink excessive amounts of alcohol and take Xanax (I still love you).

So on one of my lunatic shopping sprees and after having spent a good hour staring at pastel bags of egg-shaped candy, I was about ready to open up a bottle of vodka in the middle of the store when I happened to pass the donuts in the bakery.  You know the prepackaged coconut crunch donuts they have in those tubular packages?  Yep, those donuts.  And as I slowed my cart to a stop, a lightbulb sparked a little.  Coconut crunch donuts kinda look a lot like nests, don’t they?  Disheveled random smatterings of toasty coconut attached to an adorably petite, round cake.  Not that actual nests look like cake or I would probably be arrested for mass bird-nest defacing BUT you understand what I mean.  So I tossed them in my cart along with some Cadbury Mini Eggs, Reese’s Mini Eggs and Mini Whopper Eggs and with a little white chocolate glue, crafted me some edible Donut Bird Nests.

DSC_1054AAND OH MY GOD AREN’T THEY CUTE?!  I promise making and eating copious amounts of these will not result in your bird-nest defacement arrest.  Pinky swear.

SO GET TO BAKING.  Er, making (since this really only requires having a pulse to make).


5.0 from 3 reviews
Donut Bird Nests
Recipe type: Treats, Donuts
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 20-24
These adorable donuts look exactly like birds nests and are fun, EASY Easter treats to make with kids! Use your favorite candy to jazz things up.
  • Coconut crunch mini donuts (or any crumb coated donut hole/miniature donut)
  • 1-2 squares White Chocolate Candiquik
  • Cadbury Mini Eggs, Reese's Mini Eggs, Mini Whopper Eggs, or any other egg-shaped candy of your choosing
  1. Melt the Candiquik according to package directions. If you're making around 24 miniature donut nests, I would only melt about 1-2 squares of the Candiquik -- just break it off and save the rest later. You can also melt the entire package, allow it to harden and reuse it later -- whichever is easiest for you.
  2. Using your thumb, make a small well/indentation in the center of the miniature donut, like where the hole is. This just helps the egg candies stick better.
  3. Dip the bottom of an egg candy into the white chocolate and gently press it into the indentation in the donut. Repeat with remaining candies and donuts. I used three eggs per donut, but do what you like best. Allow the donuts to sit for about 5-10 minutes, allowing the chocolate to harden, before consuming.

DSC_1061AThese are SOMUCHEASIER than making those traditional chow mein noodle cookies which I find to be way too sticky and hard to shape (while some argue they technically have no shape, they DO have a shape and that non-shape shape is VERY hard to form!!  Or maybe I’m incompetent).  Feel free to use your imagination and let the candy in the seasonal aisle guide you as to how you want your nests to look.  There’s really no ‘wrong’ way — any way will lead you to deliciousness and ADORABLE and EASY Easter treats!

Have a fantastical day!!

xo, Hayley


Cookie Dough Doughnuts {Cookie Dough Week!}


Cookie_Dough_Week_updatedYou. Guiiiiiiiiiiiisssseee.

This takes my cookie dough and donut loves to a whole new level of insanity.

When Lindsay and Julianne asked me to participate in Cookie Dough Week, I spent awhile taking mental inventory of all my cookie dough recipes, what I’ve done, what I could do, etc.  As usual, I knew I wanted to make something under my typical criteria: A) a unique recipe; B) easy enough that novice bakers can make it; and C) outrageously rebellious, like its creator 🙂

And then it hit me: I hadn’t made a cookie dough donut before.  Instead of being all “yes!” and rejoicing the creative gods for birthing me this idea, I actually got all upset and pondered my existence, like whyyyyy have I never thought of this before?  It just seems so duh but it never occurred to me how awesome it would be to stuff a donut full of cookie dough.  Serious duh moment.

But instead of going the whole grueling route of making my own yeast dough and spending approximately one billion years waiting for it to rest and rise and raise and graduate and get married and all the complicated stuff yeast dough does, I thought I would use the shortcut route by using canned biscuits as my donut base.

Have you ever made canned biscuit donuts before?  They’re awesome!  No, they don’t taste identical to a freshly fried, from-scratch donut, but they are easily adaptable to any flavor glaze or icing you want to top them with and have roughly the same texture and mouthfeel (seriously, mouthfeel is a terrible word but you know what I mean) as a “real” donut.  In a pinch and when stuffed with cookie dough, I’ll challenge you to notice the difference.

DSC_1005AFor this, I used my favorite egg-free cookie dough recipe, which you can find HERE.  It’s a standard chocolate chip cookie recipe, just made egg-free so it is safe to eat and free of salmonella and bubonic plague and whatever else you can contract from raw eggs.

So, wanna get stuffin’? (ew, I promise I’ll never use that term, either — gaaaaaah).


5.0 from 4 reviews
Cookie Dough Doughnuts {Cookie Dough Week!}
Recipe type: Donuts
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
These delectable fried donuts are filled with cookie dough for an even more decadent treat!
  • 3 cans refrigerated biscuits (not the flaky kind)
  • 1 batch homemade egg-free chocolate chip cookie dough
  • About 2 cups canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 can chocolate frosting, melted
  • Miniature chocolate chips
  1. Pour oil into a large, heavy bottomed skillet. Heat over medium-heat.
  2. Meanwhile, on a clean, flat work surface, flatten each canned biscuit into a larger circle using the heel of your hand. Take a Tablespoon-sized scoop of cookie dough and place it in the middle of the biscuit circle. Pull up the edges of the circle to the center and pinch to seal. Roll the biscuit donut in your hands to round it out again, ensuring the cookie dough is safely secured inside of the biscuit.
  3. Drop the biscuits into the hot oil and fry for about 1-2 minutes on each side, taking care to watch them carefully as they cook very quickly. Once one side is golden brown, flip and cook on the other side. You want them as browned as possible without being burnt.
  4. Drain the biscuits onto a paper-towel lined plate or a wire rack. Once cool enough to handle, dip them halfway into the melted chocolate frosting and sprinkle generously with remaining chocolate chips. These are best served immediately.

DSC_1007aThese are the epitome of sinful!  Even though they’re extremely rich, it’ll be an exercise in willpower to stop at just one.  Try using peanut butter cookie dough with a chocolate and peanut butter glaze!  Either way, any fried pastry stuffed with cookie dough is bound to be instantly satisfying 🙂

Check out some more amazing Cookie Dough recipes from some of my favorite bloggers!!

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Parfait from White Lights on Wednesday
Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Brownie Layer Cake from Life, Love and Sugar
Cheesecake Cookie Dough Parfaits from Lemon Tree Dwelling
Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Cheesecake Pie from Crazy for Crust
Cookie Dough Oreos from Something Swanky
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Scotcharoos from The Gunny Sack
Snickerdoodle Cookie Dough Truffles from Back For Seconds
Double Chocolate Mint Cookie Dough Dip from Kitchen Meets Girl
Monster Cookie Dough Ice Cream from Mom On Timeout
Cookie Dough Tiramisu Grandbaby Cakes
Cookie Dough Doughnuts from The Domestic Rebel
Fried Dulce de Leche Cookie Dough from Simply Gloria
Espresso Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream from Beyond Frosting
No bake peanut butter and chocolate bars from Roxana’s Home Baking
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Mocha Cupcakes from Lemons for Lulu

Have a fantastical day!

xo, Hayley


Baked Butter Cake Beignets

butterbeignetsAs you all know, I am new to this dating business and especially new to the adult dating business.  And while every stupid rom com insists you’ll find love when you least expect it, it doesn’t hurt to throw out some phone numbers to hotties here and there, am I right?

Sooooo a couple days ago, Dorothy and I went out for drinks and some dinner for happy hour.  Before she arrived, I was minding my own business at our table when I spotted a serious hottie at the bar.  He had a beard — but trust me, it was fantastical — and glasses, which I personally find immensely attractive.  And bonus, he was with a guy friend with nary a female in sight.

I decided I would be super stealthy and send him a drink like you see in the movies.  You know, the bartender brings by a frosty new beer and the hottie-in-question says “I didn’t order this” and the bartender explains it was ordered by “that incredibly foxy girl in the glasses over there”?  Yeah, I totally wanted this Hollywood scene played up in huurrr.  So when the pixie-looking waitress came by, I told her my gameplan, subtly pointed out the my victim and left love in the hands of his free beer.

Except our waitress was working at a pace best described as ‘snails on vacation’ and didn’t appear to be savvy in the skilled world of adult dating so a good ten minutes passed by before she even brought my drink.  As she dropped it off, I asked for an update with the glasses-wearing hottie and she said “he left!”

I turned to see that his friend was still there and asked the waitress if possibly he could be in the bathroom since his friend was still there?  The waitress agreed that this logic was a good idea and went to investigate by asking the friend.  She returned a moment later saying that yes, the hottie was, in fact, using the facilities and would be back momentarily, so she’d get the order in “right away.”

Minutes passed, a new President was elected, global warming continued to melt polar ice caps and SuperBowl 248 came and went and finally our pixie waitress came back and said “okay, he actually did leave this time before we had a chance to get him his beer.”  I turned to confirm that my bearded hottie was actually now MIA, and in his place was an older man.  I considered the time lapse that had occurred and thought that possibly my bearded hottie had just aged very quickly due to the glacial pace of the waitress but it didn’t seem likely as this man was actually an older woman with just a very unfortunate haircut.  Our pixie waitress apologized and proceeded to tell me about how unlucky she was in love, too, and I decided not to remind her that this was probably because she worked at the slowest pace known to man and clearly did not understand the suave rules of adult dating, and that if I thought it would be like pulling teeth to get this damn fine man a beer, I would have done it myself fourteen years ago when I had the chance.

And then I ate my feelings. #storyofmylife

Anyway, thankfully the official drinking holidays are just around the corner so I have plenty more opportunities to buy bearded, four-eyed cuties some drinks.  With St. Patty’s Day approaching, there’s no shortage of beer.  But my personal favorite drinking holiday has to be Mardi Gras.  Nothing gets me more jazzed than eating tons of delicious Southern food, listening to funky jazz music and drinking obnoxiously large goblets of alcohol.  And one more little tidbit which makes this Fat Tuesday my fave: BEIGNETS!

DSC_0536AIf you’ve never had beignets, baby, you need to get out more.  Beignets are essentially the French’s doughnut — a light and airy dough that’s fried until golden and copiously dusted with powdered sugar.  Golden, crispy, and super soft, beignets aren’t like American donuts which puts them in a class of their own.  And if you ever get the chance to try them at Disneyland — you must! 🙂

While these Baked Butter Cake Beignets aren’t necessarily the real deal in the beignet world, they *do* remind me a lot of them with a somewhat similar texture and lots of amazing buttery flavor.  These are technically more like donuts, but whatever you call them, they’ll definitely be delicious!


5.0 from 4 reviews
Baked Butter Cake Beignets
Recipe type: Donuts
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 36
While these aren't like traditional beignets, they do have some beignet-like qualities and remind me of the rich, fanciful, butter-filled food of the South. Put some South in your mouth!!
  • 1 box golden butter cake mix
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup full-fat sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • Powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease a 24-cavity donut hole pan with cooking spray. If you do not have a 24-cavity donut hole pan, grease a standard sized mini donut pan or even a mini muffin tin-- both will work just fine.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, butter, eggs, sour cream, vanilla & nutmeg until the mixture is blended and no large clumps remain. Using a cookie dough scoop, portion even-sized Tablespoonfuls of batter among each greased cavity. If using a mini donut pan, you can easily pipe the mixture into the cavities by filling a piping bag or Ziploc with the batter, snipping off a corner of the bag, and piping. Otherwise, for a mini muffin tin or the 24-cavity donut hole pan, the cookie dough scoop works perfectly.
  3. Bake for approx. 8-10 minutes or until the tops are set and springy when touched. Do not over-bake! Allow the donuts to cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before gently removing to a wire rack.
  4. Place a generous amount of powdered sugar (I usually start with about ½ cup) in a medium bowl. While donuts are still warm to the touch, add a couple donuts to the powdered sugar bowl and toss to coat with a spoon. If you're not super into powdered sugar, you can also sift some sugar onto the donuts if preferred. Serve!
  5. Store any leftover donuts airtight at room temperature for up to 3 days.

DSC_0546ASo what’d we learn today?  If you wanna get technical, no, these aren’t really beignets.  But they DO have some beignet-ish qualities, are MUCH easier to make (no yeast! no rising! no frying!), and have that rich, sumptuous buttery taste with that hint of spicy nutmeg that we all love when it comes to fresh, warm donuts.  The only issue with these bad boys is they are terribly addictive, so consider sharing — don’t say I didn’t warn you.  And when it comes to adult dating, don’t trust underage pixie waitresses to do your dating dirty work.  And don’t take yourself — or the dating situation — too seriously because OMG, it’s only a beer and there’s plenty more boozy fish in the sea 😉

Have a fantastical day!!

xo, Hayley

Black Forest Donut Whoopies

blackforestdonutAs some of you may know (or probably none of you know, whatever) I have been on a minor gym hiatus.  Because of the holidays, and then the days following the holidays, and the weeks after that, and oh godddd I just really didn’t want to go.  So there’s that.

Well, I went to Zumba yesterday and let’s just say it was all kinds of awkward and gave me a disturbing revelation: I am not as good of a dancer as I’d previously thought.

Years ago, I did bellydancing for 4 or so years.  Prior to that I took dance classes in college, did jazz as a preteen and tap as a kiddo.  Not to mention the constant asshattery dancing I’ve done in my house throughout my entire 23 years on this earth.  You’d think with that kind of background I’d have some sliver of rhythm in my bones, some kind of hand-eye coordination that didn’t look like a seizing cow.  You’d think.

Here I was, standing in Zumba class full of women of all shape, age and size.  And despite their differences in looks, they had one thing in common: girls be dancing like they were in a Shakira video.  I mean, hip thrusts, shoulder shakin’, booty tooching.. the entire kit and scandalous caboodle.  And they all danced in sync which made it look like a cool latin music video… except for that weird chick in the background dancing in the opposite direction of everyone else and making this cool, sexy dance look like a cruel joke.

As everyone grinded and shook their bodies and booties, I robotically irked my limbs here a la Elaine.  And when the instructor broke out the salsa?  I was far from Sofia Vergara and more Celtic river dancer wearing clogs three sizes too large.

Needless to say, it made me think back on all my dance performances and wondered if I was this terrible on those stages, too.  And realized that, yeah, I probably was that girl on stage looking like a complete weirdo while everyone else was cute and coordinated.  Also, I had this thing where I’d always get in trouble with the teacher for not smiling.  I don’t know, it just seemed super weird to be cheesin’ hella hard on stage while doing jazz hands.  So not only was I the seizing cow doing the river dance in a latin music video, I was the angry seizing river-dancing cow doing jazz hands.  Does anyone else think that descriptor needs to make it on my tombstone?

Hayley Parker: Beloved Daughter, Sister and Seizing River-Dancing Cow with the Coordination and Direction of a Crashing Train.

I wonder if the punks who pee on tombstones would spare mine since it’s already so pathetic?  Doubtful.

Anywhooooo, because of my eternal embarrassment for my lack of dancing skills I came home and consoled myself with copious amounts of these adorable Black Forest Donut Whoopies.  They’re a delightful combination of whoopie pies, those scrumptious cupcake-esque cookie sandwiches we all love, and donuts, which are god’s gift to humanity.  And they couldn’t be simpler to whip up: slice a chocolate donut in half, spread on some cherry & almond frosting and top with a maraschino cherry.  Voila.

DSC_0380AGet ready to eat in 5, 6, 7, 8…


5.0 from 3 reviews
Black Forest Donut Whoopies
Recipe type: Cookies, Pie
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Love the taste of Black Forest Cake but hate all the hard work that goes into perfecting one? No need to suffer anymore -- simply make these Black Forest Donut Whoopies and sink your teeth into edible heaven.
  • 1 pkg miniature chocolate frosted donuts
  • 1 can cherry icing
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • Maraschino cherries
  1. On a flat, clean work surface, place each donut on its side and using a serrated knife, gently cut each one in half crosswise to form two sides, the "buns" so to speak. Repeat with remaining donuts.
  2. Stir the almond extract into the can of cherry frosting until well incorporated. Spoon the frosting into a piping bag attached with a closed-star tip and pipe the frosting in a circular motion on the flat inside of one of the donut halves. Top the frosted donut half with the top of the donut.
  3. Pipe a tiny star of frosting on top of the donut in the middle hole; affix a maraschino cherry on top. Serve!
  4. NOTE: If you cannot find cherry frosting (I found mine at Target by Betty Crocker), feel free to make your own homemade cherry buttercream, or buy vanilla frosting and use a cherry extract, maraschino cherry juice, or even cherry Kool-Aid to flavor the icing.

DSC_0387AAren’t these super adorable?  They’re *almost* too cute to eat, but then you remember they’re donuts and you’re like “well obviously I’m inhaling the entire batch.  Obviously.”  See my note within the recipe if you can’t find cherry frosting — I seem to only be able to locate it at Target by Betty Crocker.  You could also substitute any other frosting flavor for unique combinations — try chocolate for a double chocolate whoopie, strawberry icing for a sweet Valentine’s treat, or even coconut pecan frosting for an awesome deconstructed German Chocolate Cake Whoopie.  Choice is yours, and whatever you choose it’s bound to be scrumptious!

Have a fantastical weekend!

xo, Hayley


Cinnamon Roll Wrapped Donuts

cinnamondonutLet’s get straaaaaaight to the point here.

Cinnamon Roll Wrapped Donuts.  I know you’re going over the previous sentence trying to find some kind of typo but I’m afraid there’s none.  That sentence reads exactly how it shows.  Cinnamon roll wrapped donuts.  Heavens to Betsey.

Breakfast is one of my favorite meals simply because of the sheer amount of options and the fact that a huge majority of options are somewhat dessert-like (muffins, scones, danishes).  I love that people would typically judge one for noshing on cake for breakfast, but no one says a peep about shoveling cinnamon rolls in your face during the AM hours.  Breakfast food rules.

But usually when it comes down to it, I’m stuck between two beloved options: the donut, which I believe to be the perfect food in all the land, and the cinnamon roll, which comes in at a close second for being somewhat donut-like and extra cinnamon-y.  But choosing between the two is really grueling and usually results in me screaming and crying in a corner while someone tries to console my broken soul.  It’s kind of a big deal, and I hate how splotchy and streaky my face is after this cataclysmic trauma.

DSC_0178aSo I did what any broken soul would do: I decided to put on my mad scientist hat and combine the two into one seriously unique, SERIOUSLY INDULGENT breakfast/dessert.  It is not calorie-friendly, it does not care about your diet and stopping at only one will be futile.  But it is perfect for those life-or-death choices we sometimes face between cinnamon roll and donut.

You are welcome!


5.0 from 2 reviews
Cinnamon Roll Wrapped Donuts
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 5
WHY choose between cinnamon rolls and donuts when you can have BOTH in this indulgent, Frankenstein pastry!?
  • 1 can Pillsbury Cinnabon cinnamon rolls (the 5-count can)
  • 5 prepared glazed donuts (I used Entenmann's Buttermilk Glazed, but you could use any kind you prefer. Likewise, you could also use any flavor -- chocolate frosted, maple, coconut crunch, etc).
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone liner or parchment paper and set aside.
  2. On a clean, flat work surface, separate the rolls individually. Gently unravel each cinnamon roll until it's a long strip.
  3. Coil the cinnamon roll strip around the donut as best you can. The cinnamon roll doesn't have to entirely cover the donut, but you want it to be on there securely.
  4. Bake the pastries for approx. 12-15 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Remove from the oven and drizzle with the prepared icing provided in the can. Serve! These are best served warm on the same day, but can be stored in a paper bag or airtight container at room temperature for several days.

DSC_0184AI love using Pillsbury’s Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls because they’re GIANT, are easy to unravel to coil around these donuts, and are bursting with incredible cinnamon flavor.  They taste identical to Cinnabon’s classic, puffy rolls but without the guilty trip to the mall 🙂 and once wrapped around a dense, chewy donut it takes on a whole new level of awesomeness.  You still get the light and chewy texture of the donut blanketed within the flaky, spicy layers of the cinnamon roll.  And the glaze on top — Mama Mia.  To switch things up, try using different flavored donuts, like chocolate glazed, maple, or crumb.  You could also use different kinds of cinnamon rolls, like the Orange Sweet Roll or the Chocolate Roll for a different taste and texture.  The possibilities are endless.. and endlessly delicious 🙂


xo, Hayley

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