Blog Category Archives: Roundups

Salted Caramel is the New Pumpkin Spice

Salted Caramel is the New Pumpkin Spice



Sure, we still like spiced pumpkin things around here – pies, tarts, hot beverages, ice creams, brownies etc. – but according to MyFitnessPal, the flavor of Salted Caramel is taking Fall 2015 by storm!

salted-caramelWe aren’t saying that Pumpkin Spice or PSL cravings (Pumpkin Spice Latte) are going away, it just seems as though we are now more open to other decadent autumnal flavors.



Of course, we have always been big Salted Caramel fans here at Bakepedia. The image up top is of our Bacon Bourbon Salted Caramel Popcorn – also referred to as “crack corn” around the Test Kitchen.



Or if you are in the mood for brownies, try the Salted Caramel Brownies. Homemade caramel make these as indulgent as you can get; just look at the closeup above!



David Lebovitz brought us his Salted Butter Caramel-Chocolate Mousse. We dare you to try and make this without licking the spatula! Make sure to use a high quality flaky sea salt for that textural contrast.



Thinking outside the box we created Sweet & Savory Fried Vidalia Onion Rings served with a Salted Bourbon Honey Caramel Dipping Sauce. The title is a mouthful and so are these slightly sweet yet savory treats. As with all fried foods, they are best enjoyed right after frying, so plan carefully.



For something a little lower if fat, we turn to this meringue creation from the Meringue Girls: Salted Caramel, Poached Pear and Chocolate Drizzle Meringue Slab.



If you are looking for cookies, Danny from Danny Macaroons brought us his Salted Caramel Macaroons. These are not your everyday deli macaroons.



If you want to order some serious deliciousness, look no further than The Whoopie Wagon. My friend Mary Bandereck knows her whoopies and the Salted Caramel Whoopie Pies above will be delivered straight to your door.


All graphs courtesy of


If you have a favorite salted caramel recipe, Submit it Today!  We would love to try it.

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No-Bake Desserts and Icebox Cakes

No-Bake Desserts and Icebox Cakes




Before our thoughts completely turn to apples, pears and pumpkins up here in the Northeast, we want to squeeze every last drop of summer out while we can. Fact is that we have been having some of the hottest days of the summer in the last few weeks around here so we have been focusing on ice cream, frozen desserts and icebox cakes and creations…anything that doesn’t require baking, or maybe just minimal baking like for a tart crust. We turned to our blogger friends to see what they have up their sleeves. I was immediately thrilled with the ice cream shot pictured above. And the name! When I was growing up the idea that there were ice cream cones called drumsticks always made me smile and it turns out the site of them still does!

Blogger Namely Marly brings us these Vegan Drumsticks and while they might look complex, they are simple enough to make withe the kids. She takes advantage of vegan frozen ice cream and purchased cones and they come together very quickly – and will disappear just as fast.


5-Ingredient No-Bake Strawberry Tart


These individual tarts do require small tartlet pans, but what an elegant and healthy way to close out the summer months. They feature yogurt and fresh fruit with a crust of nuts, oats dates that simply presses in – all from the blog Tried and Tasty.


7-Layer Cookie Dip


Seems like many of the parties I go to feature a 7-layer dip but it typically involved beans, sour cream and cheese! Here The Cookie Rookie got inspired by the sweet side of the kitchen by combining pudding and cookies and cream and nuts. When made in disposable plastic cups this becomes an easy outdoor dessert to share with a crowd.


Chocolate Stout S’Mores Icebox Pie


We can always count on The Beeroness to bring us something with scratch ingredients and bit sophisticated. The sweetness of s’mores flavors are tamed with the addition of stout. We love the combination of slightly bitter stout and chocolate. Here a crispy crust and creamy middle is topped with toasted marshmallows. Get out your torch! (We love an excuse to do that).


Strawberry and Blueberry Cheesecake Icebox Cake


We love baking in Pyrex for our pies but when it comes to cakes and such in 9×13-inch pans we are usually reaching for metal. This icebox dessert from Life, Love and Sugar is a great example of why you should have an ovenproof glass 9×13-inch pan (such as Pyrex) in your kitchen. When making such a creation, with its layers of strawberries and blueberries and cream cheese and such, it is nice to see the layers! It also makes a nicer presentation on the table. This one is easy enough to make with any kids that are still home from school.


No-Bake Kool-Aid Pie


Check out that color! Yes, it comes from Kool-Aid. This no-bake pie is brought to us by Dinners, Dishes and Desserts and is certainly going to add color to your buffet table. Kids and adults alike get a kick out of the idea that a powdered drink can be used for flavor and color in a simple pie.


No-Bake Nutella Chocolate Icebox Cake

Nutella iceboxSlider

We always have a jar of Nutella in the Test Kitchen. Why haven’t we featured it in a while? probably because we keep eating it by the spoon and there isn’t enough to bake with! Apron Strings blog saves the day with this idea featuring cream, Nutella and layers of chocolate graham crackers.



No-Bake Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie


Here is a no-bake pie from Flavor Mosaic that combined peanut butter and Butterfinger candy. You’ve got dark chocolate flavor in the store-bought Oreo crust, the milk chocolate coating the candy bars blending with peanut butter and sweetened condensed milk in the filling…save some of the candy bars for sprinkling on top for a welcomed textural contrast.



Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Ice Cream Cake

chocolate peanut butter cake

We do love the texture contrast of crunchy and smooth all in one dessert and Cooking On The Weekends has brought us Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Ice Cream Cake that not only has contrasting textures and flavors but is gluten-free as well using coconut flour in the cake. This one is a showstopper and is sure to impress.


No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gingersnap Pecan Crust


And last but not least, a nod to the coming fall with a pumpkin dessert. Joyful Healthy Eats brings us spoonable pumpkin cheesecake in a bowl – who can resist that? With a gingersnap and pecan crust, this one will make us happy that the seasons are changing.


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Labor Day Potluck Desserts

Labor Day Potluck Desserts



Is summer over? NO! We have a few more weeks, folks. That said, school is starting, if it hasn’t already and the Labor Day weekend is coming fast. Around my neck of the woods we like to get together for casual parties where everyone brings a dish. Sometimes spelled “potlatch”, the concept is that the host perhaps provides a main dish or two, maybe the beverages, but guests fill in, mostly with side dishes and desserts. When I am invited you can just imagine that I am expected to bring dessert! A good potlatch dessert travels well, feeds many easily and preferably will not require refrigeration once it arrives at its destination. Here are some of our blogger friend’s best bets.

The No-Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Lasagna pictured as our main image is from Snappy Gourmet. The recipe does rely on some convenience products but every time we have brought a dessert called “lasagna” to a party people go kinda crazy over it. Go figure, but hey, this one is creamy and light and satisfying at the same time and eminently portable.


Mississippi Mud Bars

Mississippi mud bars

These are a crowd pleaser and this version from Diary of a Recipe Collector is so rich, they go a long way. Always helpful at a party of indeterminate number.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes


Cookie dough is an insanely popular flavor and cupcakes seem to draw folks to the buffet table. Besides, cupcakes are very portable and give you an excuse to buy a cute cupcake carrier if you don’t have one. These are from our friends at Cupcake Diaries.


Chocolate Sheet Cake with Peanut Butter Icing


Iowa Girl Eats brings us a sheet cake – always a good choice for travel as well as feeding a crowd. The icing is very easy and uses melted butter.


No-Bake Vegan Cheesecake


Roasted Root brings us this creamy and dreamy no-bake cheesecake that is gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free and happens to be high protein. Plated with fresh figs as pictured, it is an elegant finish, but feel free to use other fruit as well. Raspberries are a lovely choice.


Peach Pie Oatmeal Cookies


Peaches are still abundant but will soon give way to apples, pears and pumpkins so take advantage. Their use in cookies is unexpected and brings moisture and flavor as well as a pretty color. These are from Amy’s Healthy Baking.


Lemon Berry Angel Food Cake


Using purchased angel food cake gets this light trifle made in no time. This dessert from The Lemon Bowl travels easily in a bowl. Use a clear bowl to show off all of the pretty layers and colors. Makes it even more enticing.


Blueberry Crunch Dump Cake


Home Cooking Memories brings us a dump cake featuring blueberries – another fruit that is about to leave the stands. This dessert features several textures – moist and fruity, crisp and crunchy – and when you top it with some cream you have a sensory explosion.


Buttermilk Cake with Maple Bacon Glaze


If you follow Bakepedia closely you know we have a love affair with bacon in our desserts. Here The Reluctant Entertainer brings us a cake big enough for a party and blends bacon with maple and a tender buttermilk based cake.


Easy Tropical Angel Food Cake with Pineapple and Toasted Coconut Cake


Two Healthy Kitchens brings us a dessert with a tropical vibe. The almonds accentuate the coconutty flavor and the size is perfect for most any potluck.


No Cook Peaches and Cream Tart

peach tart

The Apron Strings blog is showing us a summery dessert and I say, hold onto summer while we can! This no-bake tart showcases peaches or nectarines nicely. Travel with it in a pan to keep it safe while transporting.

And from all of us here at Bakepedia, have a fabulous holiday weekend!


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Desserts from The Grill

Desserts from The Grill


I won’t give up desserts during the summer but there are some days that turning the oven on is just the last thing I want to do. And even main dishes? Forget about it…I’m on the deck grilling and chilling, as they say. Here are some kick-ass dessert recipes from our favorite bloggers to keep you satisfied – and cool at the same time. Check out our primer on Grilling Desserts in 5 Easy Steps before you get started.

We have to start with s’mores. Along with strawberry shortcake, variations on this classic are our summer go-to. The image above is from Very Culinary and is a Tropical S’More featuring pineapple, coconut and a White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookie. Easy, juicy, fruity and a great new take on the classic s’more.


peach shortcake

And speaking of shortcake, here is a Grilled Peach Shortcake from Noshing with the Nolands. A drizzle of balsamic reduction keeps these from being too sweet and lends a sophisticated note.


Strawberry compote side view

We can never get enough rhubarb and this recipe for Grilled Angel Food Cake with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote from NeighborFood is a great use of there tangy vegetable. The sauce is great over purchased ice cream or sorbet even without the cake – but then there would be no grilling component! Your choice. (I really want to like that spoon!)



Kim Beaulieu blogs over at Kiss My Smoke and she knows a thing (or two or three) about grilling and heat – as in bring on the spice! Just check out this Grilled Peach & Serrano Upside-Down Cake above. A little heat, a little sweet, serves a crowd – perfect for your next get-together on the patio. The recipe features fabulous step-by-step instructions in photos and text. Your cake will come out perfectly.



Here is another recipe featuring grilled angel food cake, this time with beer from who else but Jackie, the Beeroness. This Grilled Angel Food Cake with Beer Macerated Strawberries will please fruit and beer lovers. Have some pale ale or a Belgian brew ready to go.



I like tropical flavors in the summer and mangoes are a particular favorite of mine. Here Sandy from Everyday Southwest cubes them, grills them as kebobs and adds some cooling lime and chile for heat – these Grilled Mango with Honey and Pistachios is easy but elegant. Take the time to search out the mesquite honey.



Halved peaches make a great grilling medium. Lori from Foxes Love Lemons gave us a great dessert with her Grilled Peaches with Vanilla-Cinnamon Glaze. They are finished off with a scattering of fresh mint, which really elevates the dishinto something that’s more than a sum of its parts.



Many bloggers submitted a version of grilled bananas but we were especially taken with the Grilled Banana Dessert Bar concept from Home Cooking Memories. Why limit yourself to marshmallows and chocolate when you can add on granola, coconut, chopped pecans, peanut butter chips, and graham cracker pieces. Guests can mix and match as they like as seen below.

Now get the grill fired up and celebrate summer!


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No-Bake, Red, White and Blue Desserts

No-Bake, Red, White and Blue Desserts

cherry bombs

What I love about roundups is that we get to see a varied point of view from various recipe developers. We all have different palettes and bringing together recipes from our favorite bloggers is a way to get the whole shebang in one place. Right now we are thinking about the Fourth of July holiday coming up. Friends and family gathering – often outside – to share food and drink. And it is hot in a lot of places! Too hot to turn on the oven. And besides, many us have the grill fired up, so why turn on the oven, too?

Here we bring you the best No-Bake, Red, White and Blue Desserts to make your July 4th as festive as possible. Easy, too – these are great desserts to make with kids. Well, except maybe for the vodka soaked cherries. Use your judgement! We’ve got frozen treats, cheesecakes, vegan desserts, chia pudding, red, white & blue breakfasts, popcorn nibbles and more…

In our main image above you can see the vodka soaked Buzzed Cherry Bombs from Laurie Farmer and Frosting and a Smile. Simple, colorful and please, just for the adults. These maraschino cherries are dipped in white chocolate coating and then dipped in sparkly blue sugar. Make at least a couple per person. They go fast.



The SimpleThrifty blog by Heidi Jo is packed with creative ideas, like these Patriotic Snow Cones. Snow cones are a tried and true summer treat. They never go out of style because they are so easy and just so much fun. Maybe you have only thought of getting snow cones at county fairs or city street fairs, but they can be made at home and Heidi walks you through it.



Looking for a healthy alternative? This Berry Patriotic Chia Seed Pudding can be served for breakfast – it’s that clean and healthy! Kelly Page blogs at The Tasting Page and she brought us this layered delight. The individual servings in tiny jars makes them extra special – and portable!



Speaking of breakfast, start the day right with a seasonally hued smoothie from from Katrina’s Kitchen. Her Frozen Triple Berry Smoothies can even be packaged in small jars for what Katrina calls “second breakfast”. Sounds good to us!



How about a dip to round out our choices? Sweet dips have been making the rounds the last few years and yet some of us still haven’t indulged. Well, it’s high time you did! The Red, Light and Berry Dip from Carrie and her The Frugal Foodie Mama blog starts with yogurt and whipped topping and adds raspberries and blueberries. Graham cracker dippers make it seem like you are eating cheesecake!



Popsicles are easier to make than you think and the choice of molds on the market is extensive. You can find them in classic shapes as well as rocket ships, animals, even aliens. Above are the Red, White & Blue Milk Pops from the Taste and Tell blog. Blueberries and strawberries are suspended in honey-sweetened milk. Lighter than ice cream, but heartier than a sorbet or fruit ice.



No-bake cheesecakes make an appearance in the Test Kitchen every summer and this No-Bake White Chocolate Cheesecake Tart combines the best attributes of no-bake cheesecake and fresh fruit tarts. Blogger Barry from Rock Recipes tells us that the fruit topping can be varied, but we like sticking with the berries for Independence Day.




Marshmallows are around in our Test Kitchen all summer long, usually finding their way into some sort of s’more recipe. Here they are used in a seasonal Fourth of July Krispy Treats from the Cupcake Diaries blog. When was the last time you made krispy treats? And if you want more colorful rice krispy inspiration check out our Trix Treats.




Marly from Namely Marly brings us a Red, White and Blueberry Vegan Cheesecake based on cashews, almonds and coconut milk. Coconut sugar brings gentle sweetness. If you have never made a vegan cheesecake, this is a great one to start with. It is really kind of incredible how creamy this is.




Popcorn is a nightly snack for us and often we go the savory route. But check out this Patriotic Munch from Julie’s Eats & Treats. You start with puffed corn and add chocolate coating and seasonal colors. Make sure to order oil-based food coloring. Kids love helping with this recipe and it can be packaged for portable munching while you are watching fireworks.




Feeling like indulging in cheesecake but need help with portion control (*looks at self*)?  Then try this recipe for Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries from Amber and her blog, Dessert Now, Dinner Later. She took June off from blogging and we wish her well with her new baby boy! Five ingredients and a pastry bag and you have a pretty and tasty dessert – or an addition to a dessert array.




Trifles are super easy to put together – the key is having a pretty, clear glass bowl. This Oatmeal Creme Pie Berry Trifle from Jocelyn at BruCrew Life is ingenious. She uses Little Debbie Oatmeal Creme Pies for layering. Brilliant. Make it ahead to let the textures blend and soften.




I love Jell-O. It is a childhood comfort food thing for me and I am a total sucker for layered gelatin concoctions. This Layered Ribbon Jell-O Salad shown above is from Two Healthy Kitchens and Shelley and Gretchen, who co-blog. Cool, fruity and eye catching! Just take your time creating the layers for the best effect. Here is their version below that highlights the July 4th color scheme.




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Dump Cakes for Near Instant Gratification

Dump Cakes in a Jiffy


I will admit that I have a tendency to get lazy about baking when weather starts to get warmer. It’s a shame, too, because that’s when produce is at its best and baking with fruit is the most fun. But something about the combination of the heat and all the work that goes into baking, plus having the oven on for long periods of time makes me want to avoid baking.

Last year searches for “dump cake” increased over 600% on Google. I had to find out what everyone was so interested in! Turns out it has to do with ease (many use boxed cake mix) – and they are fun. These are the kind of recipes that are so easy it makes me feel like I have no right to complain. What could be simpler than dumping a bunch of no-fuss ingredients together in one dish and letting it bake while you sit in the shade and sip a cool glass of lemonade? Let’s get dumping.

Perfect Peach Cobbler Dump Cake via The Slow Roasted Italian

I love this recipe (shown above) because it doesn’t use boxed cake mix! Got fresh peaches on hand? Give them a try in this recipe.



Pina Colada Dump Cake via Snappy Gourmet

This pina colada dump cake would be a perfect way to cap off any cookout on a hot day. Top it off with some ice cream, or whipped cream and a cherry (or both)!


Banana Spice Dump Cake 4

Banana Spice Dump Cake via The Kitchen is My Playground

I love how crumbly and delicious this banana spice dump cake looks. This recipe is a great twist on banana bread, if you’re tired of that old standby.



Mini Pear Dump Cakes via Totally the Bomb

I love these single-serve pear dump cakes; they’re so cute! They’d be a perfect for dessert (or even brunch!) with a small group of friends.



Strawberry Dump Cake via Yummy Healthy Easy

This recipe is so simple, you don’t even have to stir. And it’s ready in a flash, so if you don’t want to go to a last-minute cookout empty-handed, this is the perfect dish to take along.


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It’s Maple Syrup Season!

Make Sure To Use Real Maple Syrup


Is it my imagination, or does maple go with almost everything? From sweet to salty to savory, it seems like adding maple always enhances the flavors. The next time you get a maple craving, don’t just default to pancakes with maple syrup. Here are 12 recipes from around the Internet that prove how versatile maple flavors can be!


Maple Bacon Cake Pops via Cookie Dough and Oven Mitt (as seen in our main image, above)

Like all combinations, chocolate and bacon isn’t for everyone. But for those who dig it, here’s a recipe for some maple morsels covered in creamy chocolate and crisp bacon.


Maple Pecan Mini Cheesecakes via Will Cook for Smiles


I love this maple pecan mini cheesecake recipe because the cheesecakes are so simple, but the topping looks so delicious! And if you don’t want the mini version, there’s an alternative suggestion for a full-sized cheesecake.


Maple Walnut Banana Bread with Maple Glaze  via Renee’s Kitchen Adventures

maple walnut banana bread 2

Whip up a batch of this over the weekend for a quick breakfast on weekday mornings. How good does that glaze look, and how tasty would this be warmed up with some butter?


Bacon Cinnamon Buns via Poet in the Pantry

bacon cinnamon buns

The maple-bacon craze has really taken over in the past few years, but I’m certainly not going to complain! This recipe combines all sorts of perfect breakfast elements: cinnamon rolls, bacon, and maple syrup. Yum.


Maple Brown Sugar Bourbon Bars via Well Plated by Erin


These look incredibly dangerous. All soft and chewy with that maple bourbon glaze on top? It might be hard to stop after just one.


Maple Cinnamon Glazed Peanut Butter Cookies via Mom on Timeout


I’m a sucker for a good peanut butter cookie, but I never would have thought to top them with some maple glaze. That combination of flavors sounds so yummy.


Maple Ice Cream via Texanerin


Looking for some ice cream to accompany a pie or cobbler that has a little more punch than regular vanilla? Why not give maple a shot!


Cranberry Maple Walnut Scones via Beyond Frosting

maple scones

These cranberry maple walnut scones are big, beautiful, and begging to be devoured with a cup of coffee. I love the maple drizzle with crushed walnut topping!


Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding via The Roasted Root


If you’re looking for a dessert on the healthier side, it seems impossible to go wrong with this one. Chocolate, coconut, and maple to make everything sweet? Sounds good to me.


Apple Skillet Cake with Maple Mascarpone Glaze via Melanie Makes


You might want to put this recipe in your memory bank for fall when you can go pick your own fresh apples. But there’s no harm in testing it out now! Check out that moist, fruity cake and that generous layer of glaze.


Maple Meringues with Dark Chocolate via Very Culinary


Looking for something small and sweet to nibble on? These little maple meringue sandwiches should do the trick!


One-Bowl Maple Glazed Buttermilk Doughnuts via The View From Great Island

maple doughnuts

Of course, where would we be without maple doughnuts? If you’ve got a houseful of big doughnut fans, this is a great recipe to make them happy on Sunday mornings!


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Easter Roundup: Candy Easter Nests, Dirt Cups & Bunny Butts

Easter Baking Has Never Been More Fun


I will admit that Easter has never been one of my favorite holidays. Only in recent years have I begun to find things that I enjoy about the holiday. “Easter Parade,” for example, is one of my favorite classic films. And I’m never going to say no to Easter candy — jellybeans, chocolate bunnies, Cadbury Mini Eggs. And the recipes in this Easter roundup are so sweet, so fun, so delightfully cheerful and spring-y that I couldn’t help but smile as I prepared to share them with you. So if you’re looking for something to add to the kids’ Easter baskets, or just a fun dessert to share with the family, we’ve got you covered.


Easter Breakfast Donuts via Wonky Wonderful


What’s more fun than the look of surprise on the kids’ faces when they discover the goodies in their Easter baskets? The look of surprise on their faces when they find Easter baskets and these adorable spring doughnuts for breakfast!


Lemon Birds’ Nests via Lemon Tree Dwelling


Lemon is such a traditional springtime flavor, which is why I love these darling lemon birds’ nests! What a perfect accompaniment to any Easter dessert tray.


Bunny Butt Cupcakes via Spend with Pennies


I couldn’t resist. There goes Peter Cottontail. These are just too cute! These are featured in the top image, as well.


Healthy(er) Spring Dirt Cups via Happy Food Healthy Life


No one has to know that these are on the healthier side. I loved dirt as a kid, and I never met any other kid my age who didn’t think it was the coolest dessert on the planet. I love the layers in this recipe and the grassy look of the top. Toss in some gummy worms and serve it up!


Easter Egg Cookie Dough Truffles via Wine and Glue


I love a good truffle, especially when chocolate chip cookie dough is involved. The pretty pastel colors of the “egg shells” will make these beautiful homemade additions to any Easter basket.


Easter Carrot Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting via Pineapple and Coconut


I couldn’t put together an Easter roundup without at least one carrot cake recipe. These cupcakes are gorgeous, and I love the variety of ideas for decoration.


Easter Egg Hunt Sugar Cookie Bars via Julie’s Eats and Treats


These cookie bars are reminiscent of the Easter doughnuts above, and they’re just as adorable! They’re a perfect alternative if you don’t have a doughnut pan, or if sugar cookies sound more appealing than doughnuts.


Easter Egg Nest Macaroons via Yummy Healthy Easy


Light, coconut flavors are also perfect for Easter desserts. These macaroons look so perfect with their chocolatey treats on top.


Easy Easter Egg Jelly Doughnuts via Bakeaholic Mama

Easter Doughnuts

Decorating Easter eggs is always a blast, so why not use those same skills to decorate your desserts? Get creative with these little bite-sized morsels!


Easter Egg Nest Cakes via Sweet C’s Designs


I love these mini cakes! They’re so sweet and simple and spring-y. And they seem to provide another opportunity to get creative with decorating. Throw on some jelly beans or add a marshmallow Peep for extra cuteness.


Nutella Cream Eggs via Inside BruCrew Life


I love the look of these soft, fluffy Nutella cream eggs. They look ready to melt in your mouth, and how adorable are they with those colorful sprinkles?



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High-Altitude Baking with Blogger Barbara Schieving

Tips for Baking at High-Altitude


Our Test Kitchen is here in New England and I am a northeast girl, so I am not an expert on high-altitude baking. There are certain guidelines to be aware of for best baking results and it made perfect sense to turn to someone who has the experience. Barbara Schieving blogs at and she agreed to chat with me to set us all straight. Turns out that high-altitude baking is not that hard to understand as long as you follow a few rules – and her baked goods are testament to how great the results can be.


Dédé Wilson: Barbara thank you for taking the time to chat with us about high-altitude baking. How long have you had your blog?

Barbara Schieving: 6 years!


Why did you start it?

My daughter called at 10:30 one night to get a recipe – a recipe that I had given her before – and I realized it would be so much handier to just have it online…it would be easy to share! Also there was a Daring Baker project starting and I wanted to participate.


Let’s get right into it. Where do you live and what is the altitude?

A suburb of Salt Lake at 4500 feet.


Have you always lived at a high altitude?

I was in CA for a while, but yes, most of my time has been somewhere at a higher altitude.


So most of your baking has been with these challenges?

It wasn’t until I started the blog that I noticed the challenges…before then I would try a scratch recipe and not have great results so I would end up going back to a boxed cake mix and tweaking it…


So when did you begin baking from scratch?

I had always made cookies from scratch and pies and cream puffs…in fact I have a cream puff book coming out called Dream Puffs in October 2015…


Congratulations! Put us on the list to see it please!

Pate a choux does great at higher altitudes…they puff up bigger…there is less air pressure weighing them down! But cakes are a bigger challenge. I was after creating a big fluffy cake…


What did you do that made a huge positive difference from your first attempts?

I am friends with the blogger from CityhomeCountryhome and her recommendations were really helpful. It depends on what you are making. For cakes you reduce leavening – baking soda and baking powder – but you also decrease the sugar and increase liquid…the higher up you go the more you need to change those three things…pate a choux (for cream puffs) uses eggs to leaven and I didn’t have to change anything…


What others work without tweaking?

That’s the main one…yeast breads tend to over rise at high altitude so you might try less yeast…sugar feeds on the yeast so reduce the sugar too…and then you might want to increase the salt in those recipes for a right balance….


How about equipment or tools? Anything special there?

Not really, but when it comes to the oven a lot of guides for high altitude baking will say increase the temperature by 25 degrees. You don’t have the atmosphere weighing down the leaveners so if you increase the temperature it helps the batter or dough set faster…


Are baking times over all shorter?

No, actually they aren’t…water boils at a lower temperature but food doesn’t cook faster…unless it’s under pressure…(Barbara also has a pressure cooking site).


Oh! You are a busy lady? Which is your focus?

I try to post 2 times a week on baking and 1 time a week on pressure-cooking. The new electric pressure cookers are such a breeze to use.



Well since cakes seem to require a bit of finessing we are thrilled that you agreed to share your take on the classic Hershey’s Perfectly Chocolate Cake (seen above) and your Key Lime Pound Cake (seen below).



The University of Utah also has some good information that might be helpful to your Bakepedia community.


Thank you Barbara! You have taken a misunderstood problem and made it much easier for us to understand.

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Pink Dessert Roundup for Valentine’s Day

Pretty Pink Desserts for Valentine’s Day from Our Favorite Bloggers


Like most people who run in the “perpetually single” circle when it comes to relationships, I spent many years having a hard time mustering enthusiasm for Valentine’s Day. Only in the last year or so have I begun to accept it for what it is: a day of love, regardless of what kind. Romantic, platonic, familial, self, they’re all important and worthwhile kinds of love.

So whatever love you’re celebrating this year, make sure you do it right — with lots of sweet treats! What better way to show your love than with some pretty pink desserts? Dédé has, in her words, “an unnatural attraction to pink for someone her age”, but one look at these pretty confections and who can argue? We like to eat well and have fun and pink just livens everything up.


Raspberry Chocolate Cupcakes via Life, Love, and Sugar


Raspberry and chocolate is one of my favorite flavor pairings, and you virtually can’t go wrong with this one on Valentine’s Day. Love the raspberry purée icing!


Strawberry Mug Cake via Food Faith Fitness


I’m a big fan of anything that can be served in a mug…coffee, tea, hot cocoa, cake. This recipe is perfect if you’re spending a night in pampering yourself. Delicate, tasty, and almost good for you.


Pink Funfetti Pound Cake via The Kitchen in my Playground

Funfetti Pound Cake 12

This pink funfetti pound cake is so cheery and festive. A little blue this Valentine’s Day? Have a slice as a pick me up.


Raspberry Chambord Squares via The View From Great Island

Chambord Squares

These squares are the prettiest shades of pink! Make a batch to share with everyone you love.


Sugar Hearts via The Domestic Rebel


Valentine’s Day would be nothing without candy. Why not make some of these simple sugar hearts to share instead of choking down those chalky conversation hearts?


Strawberry Coconut Chia Seed Pudding via Tried and Tasty


Still sticking to that healthy-eating New Year’s resolution? We’ve got treats for you, too! These strawberry coconut puddings are sure to be sweet and satisfying. Garnish with as many fresh strawberries as you like.


Chocolate-Dipped Strawberry Spritz Cookies via Bake Love Give


If you’re not doing chocolate-covered strawberries this year, these chocolate-dipped strawberry spritz cookies can be the next best thing! And so cute if you’re baking for the kids’ school Valentine’s Day party.


Red Velvet Chocolate Chip Cookies via Give Recipe


It wouldn’t be Valentine’s Day without red velvet, would it? These cookies look so rich and decadent, and the possibilities for decoration are virtually endless.


Adult Raspberry Italian Cream Soda via The Cookie Rookie


If you’re staying in for a romantic dinner with someone special, these cream sodas are a perfect accompaniment. Don’t they look fun to drink? This is a perfect example of how pink can be elegant and fun at the same time.


Pink Lemonade Fudge via Back for Seconds


Looking for something fun to share with coworkers on Valentine’s Day? This pink lemonade fudge is sure to be a sweet, tart surprise.


Valentine’s Day Doughnut Cupcakes via Kailley’s Kitchen


It’s a tiny doughnut…on top of a cupcake. If you’re looking to really spoil someone this Valentine’s Day, I don’t have a better answer for you than this.


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Have a Merry White Christmas

Desserts for Your Holiday

crescent cookies

Unlike a lot of people I know, I’m a big fan of snow. I would prefer it snow for most of the month of December. And if it doesn’t snow on Christmas? Forget it. There has to be enough snow on the ground to cover the grass on Christmas day for me to truly enjoy it. As far as White Christmases go, I’ve been pretty lucky. Spoiled, even. I can only recall one year in recent history that hasn’t been quite as snowy as I would have liked. What can I say? I’m a midwesterner. I dig snow.

So, in honor of snow-covered slopes and and glistening rooftops, here are twelves recipes that take after the White Christmas tradition.


Viennese Crescents via 365 Days of Baking and More

There’s something about Viennese crescent cookies, as seen in our top image, that makes them totally addicting. Maybe it’s all that luscious powdered sugar.


White Chocolate Truffle Cake via Life, Love, and Sugar


I can’t get over how delicious and moist this cake looks. And holy moly, look at that truffle topping! This white chocolate truffle cake looks like melt-in-your-mouth velvety deliciousness.


White Chocolate Tiramisu Trifle with Spiced Pears via epicurious


Dédé developed this recipe for Bon Appetit and it made the cover of the magazine in 2007. She fondly refers to it as her favorite “cover girl”. The challenge was to create a dessert that depicted “white Christmas”. She said it was harder than you think to work with mostly “white” foods but the result is gorgeous, delicious and is even better made a day ahead.


Andes Mint Cookies via The Law Student’s Wife

andes mint cookies

I love the idea of these Andes Mint Cookies. They look like your average Christmas cookie, but when you bite into them? Minty delight!


Skinny Eggnog Fudge via Amy’s Healthy Baking


Trying to stop yourself from that second (or third…or fourth…) glass of eggnog? Grab a morsel of eggnog fudge instead.


Snickerdoodle Cookie Dough Truffles via Back for Seconds


I love truffles, especially for the holidays. They’re perfect bite-sized little treats. These snickerdoodle truffles are so pretty — check out that cinnamon sugar topping!


Pistachio Cardamom Snowball Cookies via The Corner Kitchen

pistachio cardamom

I love all variations of the snowball cookie, but these pistachio cardamom snowball cookies sound particularly tasty!


No-Bake White Chocolate Mimosa Cheesecake via Beyond Frosting

mimosa cheesecake

You might not always go looking for citrusy flavors for holiday desserts, but why not switch it up a little? This could also be a great dessert for a New Year’s Eve celebration!


Chai Tea Snow Muddy Buddies via Cupcakes and Kale Chips


I don’t know a single kid — or adult, for that matter — who can resist the temptation of a handful of muddy buddies. Such a crowd-pleasing favorite, and so easy to make! Plus the spice of the chai makes these a perfect holiday dessert.


Gluten Free Vegan Cranberry Bliss Bars via Fork and Beans

bliss bars

The Cranberry Bliss Bar is a Starbucks favorite, much like the pumpkin spice latte. Now you can make an endless supply to keep at home! Plus, this recipe is vegan and gluten free…that’s practically guilt-free, right?


Best Coconut Macaroons via Mom on Timeout


I consistently underestimate the power of a good coconut macaroon. These can be a light, sweet addition to all the rich and dense holiday desserts on your cookie platter.


Salted Caramel Meringue Cookies via The Bitter Side of Sweet


I love the look of these little caramel meringue cookies! They’re delicate little droplets of sweetness.


Peppermint White Chocolate Mousse Pie via Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts


It wouldn’t be the holidays without some peppermint in the mix. White chocolate mousse on an Oreo cookie crust? Perfect!

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Best Baking & Dessert Books of 2014

Bakepedia’s Choice for Outstanding Books of the Year

Baking Books 2014

The year started out a bit slow but ended with a bang. A flurry of books from some well-known and loved experts in the field debuted this fall – Rose Levy Beranbaum, Dorie Greenspan and Peter Reinhart to name just a few. Here at Bakepedia we try to pay attention to books from various sources – the tried and true, the brand new authors (hello Dominique Ansel and Brooks Headley). We looked at big tomes, tiny ones, single subject, technique oriented and more. Here are our picks for Best Baking & Dessert Books of 2014 – the ones you should be paying attention to.


Bread: Some authors’ get better and better and surprise with each new book. Such was my experience with Peter Reinhart’s Bread Revolution. Not only is it written in Peter’s incredibly accessible style, but the book is truly aptly named. This book focuses on sprouted whole grains, unusual and heirloom flours and new techniques. When I got to the part about using peaches versus Parmesan cheese versus coffee beans to trap different kinds of wild yeasts, each of which would bring different qualities to my bread, my brain was spinning wildly with anticipation. I wanted to keep reading the book but I also wanted to race to the kitchen and get started! Check out our interview with Peter and if bread is your thing, this book is a must.


GAP US cover

Technique: If you have followed our book reviews this year you know that I loved The Gentle Art of Preserving: Pickling, Smoking, Freezing, Drying, Curing, Fermenting, Bottling, Canning, and Making Jams, Jellies and Cordials. This book came as a surprise to me. I almost didn’t ask for a review copy but then I received it and I was truly drawn into the world of curing and preserving with vinegar, sugar, air, smoke, alcohol, oil, butter, fat, heat, cold and through fermentation. Sure there is plenty of non-dessert related content, but there is plenty for us dessert lovers such as homemade fruit leather, fruit cordials, marron glacé, jams and jellies and more. Tons of images. A great gift book or resource book for your own shelf.


Baking: Rose Levy Beranbaum has done it again and has brought us another “bible” – The Baking Bible – this one on baking in general, from the cover shot of the flaky, buttery, sweet, shatteringly crisp kouign amman to cakes, cookies, pies and tarts including a bit of savory. Read our full-review. A must-have for the cookbook collector, Rose aficionado and those that love to know (need to know) the why’s of baking. Her Frozen Pecan Tart is a revelation, the Fourth of July Cheesecake with a red velvet cake base is a stunner and the almost impossible perfect looking Meringue Birch Twigs are pure Rose – sublime perfection.


General Desserts: Dorie Greenspan’s newest, Baking Chez Moi, might be about what she bakes in her Paris kitchen, but the recipes, most very accessible, will be at home wherever you live. Check out our interview with Dorie; she gave me one of my favorite quotes of the year: “Deliciousness is the final criterion”. If that speaks to you, so will this book. I was particularly drawn to her Brown Butter-Peach Tourte, Bubble Eclairs, Apple Speculoos Crumble (perfect for right now) and her Matcha Financiers.


Gluten-Free: I have already sung from the rooftops over my appreciation for all the hard work that Karen Morgan has done with GF research and recipe development. Her book, The Everyday Art of Gluten-Freeis so far beyond in its sophistication of any other GF books I read this year that it stands alone. Karen’s concept is that she has broken down GF baking and cooking (savory and sweet) into 6 categories. Each has its own fool-proof GF blend, which you can make or purchase: Biscuit Blend, Donut & Fritter Blend, Pie & Pasta Blend, Cookie Jar Blend, Cake & Muffins Blend and Bread & Pizza Blend. She helped me create the GF bagel of my dreams and for that she will have my never-ending gratitude. A chewy NY-style bagel folks! The waffles that grace the cover got huge thumbs-up around here, too.


New Author: Dominique Ansel and his debut book, Dominique Ansel: The Secret Recipes, might have been included under our chef category but Dominique is such a gifted writer that calling him out as an “author” seems so much more appropriate. The book is roughly divided in half: half recipes and half beautifully written philosophical treatises on his approach to food and the creative process. I have never seen a cookbook like this before. Get it. As a gorgeous present for someone else, sure (the images are absolutely stunning), but you have to read it to. This is one of those books I took to bed – and then into the kitchen.


Restaurant Chef: Okay I know I just said this above about Dominique’s book, but I have never seen a book like Brooks Headley’s Fancy Dessertseither (he is the pastry chef at Mario Batali’s Del Posto). I mean, it kinda confounds me. So why is it included here? Because it is also highly entertaining and if you bake and you often find yourself thinking about why you bake or why you bake what you bake or how your days as a drummer in a punk band have informed your approach to pastry, then you need to read this book. I never thought I would read about a pastry chef putting olive oil and nutritional yeast on his popcorn (I do this too – hint to Headley, put the olive oil in a mister; it rocks). The book is weird. Good weird. Cucumber Creamsicle, “The Best Thing I Have Eaten in America” (hint: it’s a biscuit), Smoked Applesauce and Yeast Gelato. Here’s a quote so you know what you are in for: “ The key to making great food is to get the best possible stuff and avoid f*cking it up”. There ya go.


Candy: I am a chocolate fiend. Marzipan makes me swoon. Anything caramel-y or toffee-like weakens my knees. My fave candy book for 2014 is Sweet Thingsby Annie Rigg. Great recipes packaged with a look that evokes old-fashioned confectionery stores with offerings like Violet Candies, homemade Candy Canes, Turkish Delight, Rosewater and Pistachio Marshmallows and all the standards too like fudge, chocolate bark, truffles, caramels and more. (We are highlighting Candy with Lollipop Dippers and Candy Buttons). The book is a workhorse with clear instructions, but pretty enough to give as a gift. Her version of Rose Truffles is one of the most elegant I have seen yet with a rose petal infused syrup and organic rose oil.


Single Subject: The Southern Cake Booktook me by surprise. It’s put together by Southern Living magazine and I had preconceived notions about being underwhelmed. Consider me schooled. Big time. I love this book. Every cake has a gorgeous photograph and of any book this year, I wanted to bake more recipes out of this book than any other. I mean, not just in my dreams, but actually go into the kitchen to make. Get what I am saying? These are good recipes. Great flavor combinations, simple solid technique, tested recipes and really enticing visuals: Baklava Cheesecake (crispy and creamy), Apple Cream Cheese Bundt (with a cream cheese tunnel and praline glaze), Pineapple Upside Down Carrot Cake (combining 2 perennial favorites) and Toffee S’Mores Cheesecake (time to indulge). This is a paperback but the book has a luxe feel. Great addition to a baking library for those who bake a lot of cakes.


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Sugar-Free Baking & Desserts for the Holidays

Go Sugar-Free & Still Indulge


It’s the holiday season, and while you may be excited to gift and give and bake your heart out for holiday celebrations and family parties, it can be tough to please everyone. Your niece doesn’t like cranberries and your son won’t eat gingerbread. Your brother’s allergic to peanuts, and catering to different dietary restrictions can become stressful.

Fear not. We’re here to help with a collection of easy sugar-free recipes perfect for holiday get-togethers, and none of them use refined sugars! Luckily, many sugar-free recipes are also vegan or gluten free, and are also safe for your relatives on other special diets to eat, too.

So this year, they can’t say you didn’t try to make something that appeals to everyone.

Maple Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars via The Roasted Root


To me, pumpkin is a pleasing fall and winter flavor, and these maple pumpkin cheesecake bars, featured as our top image as well as above, look amazing – and they feature heart healthy olive oil and are sweetened with maple syrup. And since they’re already individual servings, they’re ideal for sharing at holiday get-togethers.


Skinny Chocolate Chip Cookies via An Edible Mosaic

skinny chocolate chip

It may seem boring — too basic, too easy, too expected — but when have you ever seen anyone turn down a chocolate chip cookie? I’m betting almost never. It would be a shame to exclude such a crowd-pleasing classic from this holiday roundup. Isn’t making your loved ones happy what it’s all about? These would work wonderfully in a care package, too.


Healthy Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls via Tasting Page


I always like to add little bite-sized morsels to my holiday cookie platters. Truffles, candies, and these chocolate peanut butter balls are perfect for when you want a little something sweet, but you’re not ready to commit to that next cookie. The honey complements the peanut butter beautifully.


Three-Ingredient Peanut Butter Fudge via Blissful Basil

PB Fudge

I feel much the same way about fudge. You can’t let cookies and blondies and brownies and cakes steal the show. Sometimes, you just need something rich and sweet and dense, like a piece of fudge. And don’t you love how simple this recipe is? Three, yes, three ingredients!


Peppermint Drizzled Chocolate Fudge Brownies via Amy’s Healthy Baking


Some people are prejudiced against sugar-free desserts and claim they’re not the same without the sugar. This looks like the perfect holiday recipe for fooling everyone into eating something sugar-free. When was the last time you saw a brownie that looked so fudgy and delicious?


Dark Chocolate Chestnut Cake via Seasonal & Savory

chocolate chestnut cake

This dark chocolate chestnut cake looks divine, especially with that cocoa powder dusted on top. If you’re feeling extra festive this year, try roasting the chestnuts over an open fire yourself. If you’re feeling only marginally festive, just tell people you roasted the chestnuts over an open fire. No one has to know.


Healthy Apple Spice Muffins via Overtime Cook


These beautiful no frills, no fuss apple spice muffins are great if you’re having a holiday brunch. They’ll make a tasty early-morning Black Friday snack. And they’ll be perfect when the kids decide to wake you up at 5:30 on Christmas morning.



Poached Pears with Coconut, Oatmeal, and Vanilla via Petite Allergy Treats


If you’re trying to be really good this holiday season, or your baking for people who really love fruit, give this recipe for poached pears a shot. They’re beautiful, and how can you beat the natural sweetness of a pear?



Oatmeal Cookie Bars via Yummy Healthy Easy


I love the idea of these oatmeal cookie bars, especially if you’re partaking in a holiday cookie exchange. Not wild about M&Ms in a sugar free recipe? Substitute for your favorite sugar-free candies — you can even find sugar-free M&M-like candies out there! If you’re going to have a hard time getting kids to eat such a healthy-looking dessert, just remind them Santa’s reindeer eat oats, and therefore eating oats is cool.



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Party Pleasing Apple Recipe Roundup

Apple Recipes for Your Next Party


Earlier this autumn, my roommates and I went apple picking. Since we’re not always the greatest of planners, we picked approximately 55 pounds of apples between the four of us. For the next few weeks, the apples took over our entire kitchen, and the question became, what on earth do we do with nearly 60 pounds of apples?

The answer came to us in pieces – some we gave away, some went into pies, many of them found a home in a delicious apple crumble, we snacked on some, a few even went into potato latkes, and we used some to create an improvised sangria. In the end, we used all but 11 apples, which reached the end of their useable life before we were able to eat them.

So now, it’s your turn. With the holiday season fast approaching, we’re sure you’ll soon be headed to plenty of family gatherings and holiday parties. And that, of course, means taking enough dessert to feed a large group of people. So check out these tasty, shareable apple desserts and get inspired to do some holiday season baking.


Apple Cinnamon Sugar Cookie Bars via Lemons for Lulu

These dessert bars from our blogger friend Tanya shown above, are perfect for sharing. These are light, apple-y, and delicious! We love that the base is a sugar cookie in bar form.



Sparkling Cider Cinnamon Chip Muffins via Kailley’s Kitchen

You won’t find bits of apple in these tiny muffins – they feature sparkling cider – but they look perfect for a sweet, mini morsel!



Apple Fritter Breakfast Casserole via Wonky Wonderful

My birthday falls right around Thanksgiving, and my mom is always scrambling to find something to serve for breakfast brunch…I know what she’s making this year! This casserole combines flaky croissants, apple butter and fresh apples. Sweet glaze optional.


Serioulsy Delish- Apple Crisp_2

We love Jessica Merchant’s sweet and savory White Cheddar Apple Crisp. Like apple pie with a cheddar crust but so much easier to put together – and she puts the cheese in the filling so it gets melty and gooey! Bake in a pretty casserole dish to take to a party.



Apple Streusel Bread via Running to the Kitchen

If you’re looking for something that’s on the healthier side, this is the perfect recipe for you. The recipe incorporates flax seed, whole wheat pastry flour healthy coconut oil and is gently sweetened. We have to do what we can to try to avoid putting on all those extra holiday pounds, right?



Grandma’s Apple Dessert Recipe (“Platz”) via Food Faith Fitness

How delicious does that crumbly golden crust look? Don’t forget to double the recipe if you’re trying to feed a really big family! Works with fruit other than apples, too.



Chewy Apple Peanut Butter Bars via Sugar Dish Me

More apple bars! The texture of the peanut butter chips and the tartness of the apples make these bars absolutely delicious.



Apple Snack Cake via Lemon Tree Dwelling

I’m so in love with the brown-sugar pecan topping on this cake, but you can of course leave it off if someone in your family has a nut allergy! Blogger Cathy uses a blend of apples for the maximum apple experience.



Apple Blondies With Cinnamon Brown Sugar Frosting via Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts

One of my friends has quoted me as saying, “I’ve never met a blondie I didn’t like,” and these look like no exception. What a delightful soft, sweet, shareable treat! Super easy to make; the batter uses melted butter.



Apple Turnovers via Erren’s Kitchen

To keep things fresh, take these unglazed turnovers to your holiday party and add the glaze when it’s time to serve them. And if you have a trusty puff pastry recipe, don’t be afraid to use that instead of the recommended time-saving store bought.



Caramel Apple Cookies via Amy’s Healthy Baking

In my experience, cookies are always a crowd pleaser. How can you go wrong with some soft, caramel apple cookies to go with after-dinner coffee, tea, or cocoa? These feature fried apples – and follow the tip to slightly under-bake so that they stay chewy.



Salted Caramel Apple Crisp Bars via I Heart Eating

I love the serving directions on this recipe: serve warm. Who’s going to say no to some warm apple crisp with salty caramel sauce drizzled over top? Certainly not me.



Apple Half-Slab Pie via Chocolate Moosey

And, of course, a more traditional apple recipe for those of you dying for apple pie. The half-slab makes this particular pie ideal for sharing!

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Kid Friendly Halloween Treats

A Roundup of the Best Ever Halloween Treats for Kids (Big and Little)


When I was a kid, Halloween was my favorite holiday. I know I’m not alone in this. It’s a holiday pretty much devoted to dressing up in costumes and eating candy until your stomach hurts. What’s not to like? But I also remember how my parents struggled with coming up with fun activities for entertain my friends and me during Halloween parties. We decorated pumpkins, wrapped each other up like mummies with rolls of toilet paper, and went Trick-or-Treating, of course. If you’re looking for a way to get the kids involved this Halloween or for something to keep them busy during their Halloween parties, check out all these cute kid-friendly Halloween desserts!


Gingerdead Cookies from Kailley’s Kitchen

These skeleton gingerbread cookies, shown in our main image, are too cute (the name alone got our attention), plus decorating them gives the kids a chance to use their imagination – or what they learned in science class!



Homemade Candy Bracelets from Fork and Beans

We LOVE these darling homemade candy bracelets! Just keep in mind that these babies take some preparation ahead of time. And while you are on this site, peruse a bit. Blogger Cara is amazingly creative.


spooky spritz

Spooky Spider Chocolate Spritz Cookies from Bake Love Give

Got a cookie press lying around? Chances are there’s a Halloween extension pack you can get to make these spooky spider cookies. We had never seen spritz spider cookies before. Love the Halloween sprinkles as a finishing touch!



Monster Brownie Cookies from Cupcakes and Kale Chips

Brianne’s blog is becoming a favorite of ours; we seem to always find something interesting and fun. These are perfect for kids – even the really little ones can get in the act. So quick and easy to make – you won’t lose your little baking companion’s interest.



Halloween Krispy Treats from Cupcake Diaries

A kid’s party wouldn’t be a kid’s party without some kind of Rice Krispy treat, right? These Halloween inspired ones are easy and a great change from the classic.



Pumpkin Graveyard Dirt Cups from Happy Food Healthy Life

I thought dirt pudding was the most magical thing as a child, and apparently I’m not the only kid who thought that. The pumpkin in this recipe gives these dirt cups a unique Halloween twist!


Oreo Mummy pops

White Chocolate Dipped Oreo Mummy Pops from Like Mother Like Daughter

I am totally obsessed with this spooky sweet treat – Oreo Mummy Pops! I’m sure the kids will get a kick out of dipping these in chocolate and sticking the eyes on.



Halloween Candy Bark from I Heart Eating

Blogger Kate likes to eat and so do we! This fun Halloween bark screams kiddie chaos to me (in a good way) Just let them sprinkle all those candies on there. Plus, they get to smash it into pieces once it’s cool.



Apple Peanut Butter Teeth from Mom Foodie

Looking for a healthier alternative to all that candy? Check out these vampire-inspired fruity sweet treats. The kids will have a blast picking those marshmallows off and eating them one by one.


pumpkin high hat

Pumpkin Spice Hi-Hat Cupcakes from Beyond Frosting

These adorable pumpkin cupcakes might be a little too labor-intensive for younger kids, but they can certainly help with the frosting, dipping, decorating, and eating!


candy bar turnovers

Mini Candy Bar Turnovers from Amy’s Healthy Baking

Any good Trick-or-Treater knows that part of the fun of the experience is the element of surprise. You never know what you’re going to end up with in your bag. The same goes for these tasty-looking turnovers. And how could you go wrong with melted chocolate inside a toasty pastry?



Witches Hats from Modern Christian Homemaker

Cute, simple, totally kid-friendly to both make and eat, and the perfect treat to take along to a Halloween party.



Ghost Cookie Cups from Chelsea’s Messy Apron

Too cute and (gently) spooky for words. Just make sure the kids don’t eat too many of these after digging into their candy treat bags!



Halloween Popcorn Balls from Simplee Thrifty 

We couldn’t leave you without a Halloween staple: the popcorn ball. Use as many fun Halloween decorations as you please. The kids will have just as much fun making these as they do eating them.




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Pumpkin Spice Recipes Roundup: Get Your Pumpkin Spice Fix at Home!

Pumpkin Spice Recipes to Make in Your Kitchen


For me, the arrival of pumpkin spice season should be its own holiday. Nothing says “fall” like that first sweet sip of a pumpkin spice latte or the first cinnamon-infused bite of a pumpkin spice muffin. Now that we’re well into autumn, it’s time to start baking with some of the season’s most essential ingredients. Today, we’re bringing you a pumpkin spice recipes roundup inspired by the coveted and highly-anticipated pumpkin spice latte.

Healthier Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte and Coffee Syrup from the Kitchen Treaty

Looking for a way to spice up your morning coffee without making yourself a latte? Check out our main image, up top. Make up a batch of this pumpkin spice coffee syrup and keep it on hand for an extra treat. No need to go to the corner coffee shop. This version is tastier, healthier and less expensive. And guess what? Starbucks PSL doesn’t even have pumpkin in it. This is the real deal.


mocha pumpkin spice latte

Pumpkin Spice Latte with Pumpkin Caramel  fromCooking with Books

What kind of roundup would this be if we didn’t provide you with a way to make a pumpkin spice latte at home? And the accompanying pumpkin caramel drizzle puts this over the top.



Mini Pumpkin Spice Muffins with Vanilla Glaze from Stuffed Suitcase

There’s almost nothing I love more than pumpkin muffins. And what a great idea to use coffee creamer to flavor your glaze! Bite size helps with portion control…sort of.



Pumpkin Spice Coffee Cake from Joyful Healthy Eats

This pumpkin spice coffee cake is absolutely beautiful. The pecan topping makes it extra yummy, adding texture and flavor.



Pumpkin Spiced Latte Donuts from A Happy Food Dance

Or give these pumpkin spiced latte donuts a try. That espresso frosting looks good enough to eat right out of the bowl!


pumpkin spice bark

Pumpkin Spice Latte Bark from The Kitchen Prep

Need a delicious fall-inspired anytime snack? Give this pumpkin spice latte bark a shot. Super simple, very pretty and all your favorite flavors.



Soft and Puffy Pumpkin Spice Honey Cookies from Averie Cooks

These cookies are soft and chewy. What could be better than pumpkin-flavored morsels that just melt in your mouth?



Pumpkin Spice Mousse fromThe Primalist (paleo friendly!)

Fear not, paleo friends, we’ve got something for you, too. This pumpkin spice mousse is so light and fluffy. A perfect dessert!

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Buttery, Delectable Macadamias – A Macadamia Roundup

National Macadamia Day Just Passed – What Did You Make?

pineapple coconut macadamia muffin

We made Pineapple Coconut Muffins with Macadamias seen above in honor of this vastly underrated nut. Apparently our fellow bloggers feel the same way. Love. Them.

Macadamia nuts are a serious problem for me. Don’t believe me? A professor of mine once brought chocolate-covered macadamia nuts to share with the class after a trip to Hawaii and I sustained an impressive bruise to my thigh when I dove across the table to snatch one out of the container. Not one of my finest moments, but what can I say? I’m nuts for the little morsels.

I do regret, however, that I almost never get to use macadamia nuts when I bake. With so many friends with food allergies, it’s better to be safe than sorry. And if you are allergic to macadamia nuts, I am truly, deeply sorry that you don’t get to enjoy them. They are truly magnificent. So the next time I get to bake for an audience who can indulge in their crunchy, buttery texture, maybe I’ll give one of these recipes a try.


blonde chocolateBlonde Chocolate Macadamia Bark via The View From Great Island and blogger Susan Lightfoot Moran

I’m so intrigued by everything this recipe has to offer, as seen in the image above. I’ve never experienced blonde chocolate (although we have reviewed a commercial version), but a toffee-flavored chocolate combined with crunchy, salty macadamia nuts sounds divine! Blogger Susan Lightfoot Moran provides great instructions for making your own blonde chocolate. It’s all about caramelization folks!


chocolate macadamia ice cream

Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream via Karen’s Kitchen Stories

For those of you who aren’t ready to let go of summer just yet, try out this recipe. How could you go wrong combining the cold, creamy sweetness of chocolate ice cream and summery treats like coconut and macadamia?



Coconut Paleo Bread with Pineapple, Lime, and Macadamia Streusel via Taylor Kiser at Food Faith Fitness
I love the looks of this recipe – it includes so many of my favorite things! And it’s paleo-friendly, so you’re free to indulge without feeling too guilty.



Macadamia Nut Fudge Clusters via Kitchen Tested

These clusters look like something right out of a gourmet candy box. Looking for something to spice up a dessert tray? These will do the trick – and they are kosher! They aren’t true fudge, per se, but they are darn good and we want them in our mouths, now.


caramel macadamia cheesecake

Caramel Macadamia Cheesecake via Becky over at The Cookie Rookie

I’ve decided that this is what my heaven is going to look like. This recipe combines three of my great loves to create something that looks almost turtle-inspired…I think I could eat this forever. We had to show the recipe close up, as seen above, but we couldn’t skip this image below.

macadamia dog pic

This is such a great peek into a food blogger’s life. Love it. Dédé’s dogs sometimes hang in the Test Kitchen so we totally relate.




Soft and Chewy White Chocolate Chunk Macadamia Nut Cookies via Kitchen Treaty

What kind of roundup would this be if I didn’t include a promising recipe for an old favorite? White chocolate and macadamia nut cookies are one of my life-sustaining forces, and these ones look so good.



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Grilled Desserts: Get Baking Outside!

The Grill is Hot – Make Dessert!

THK-Grilled-Fruit7There have been a couple evenings this summer when my dad has made entire meals on the grill. Chicken kabobs and grilled peppers and grilled zucchini and grilled portobello mushrooms. But my favorite is always the grilled pineapple. There’s something about fruit prepared on the grill that makes it extra colorful and flavorful. I love the way pineapple looks after it comes off the grill – golden with all those beautiful grill marks – and it’s so tart and juicy.

So with summer coming to an end and Labor Day cookouts around the corner, why not seize every possible opportunity to use your grill? After you’re done grilling up your burgers and brats and hot dogs, try out one of these fabulous recipes below. Just don’t forget to clean it first…

PS: Be sure to tune in tomorrow (8/28) when we debut a slew of our own grilled desserts.


Grilled Tropical Fruit with Almond Ricotta Sauce via Two Healthy Kitchens

Look at the image above! This is a great recipe to make a big platter of to share – perfect for a cookout! And I love the idea of serving these grilled spears with fresh fruit. Just make sure you make extra almond ricotta sauce for dipping.


blackened apricots

Blackened Apricots with Creme Fraiche and Pistachios via The View From Great Island 

These are so gorgeous it almost seems a shame to eat them. Love that dollop of creme fraiche and the sweet alterations to this recipe she suggests in the post!


quinoa apricot

Grilled Apricot Quinoa Parfaits via Fit Foodie Finds 

If you want to keep dessert super healthy (you’ve already grilled fruit, after all!) try out these tasty parfaits. Or try one out for breakfast – they’d be great on the go.




Grilled Peach Cheesecake Parfaits via Swirls of Flavor 

If you’re anything like me, you will eat cheesecake of any kind, in any form, at any time of the year. And with these no-bake parfaits, you don’t have to worry about your kitchen overheating. Grilled peaches and cheesecake? Yum.


strawberry sliders

Strawberry Mascarpone Sliders via Beyond Frosting

These sliders look so sweet and decadent. I love the idea of dipping them in chocolate for extra flavor and deliciousness – chocolate makes everything better.



Grilled Peach Cobbler via Cravings of a Lunatic

These little cobblers might not come with the grill marks I love so much, but they’re too cute to resist. Who wouldn’t want to eat something out of a tiny skillet? And imagine how good these would be with a dollop of vanilla bean ice cream.


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