Chocolate chip pudding cookies

I love finding new ideas on old favorites! And, this recipe was no exception! By adding pudding to your cookies you get a nice very chewy, soft inside but crispy outside thick cookie! A while ago, I used banana pudding and also added a bit of rum. It was perfect for the holiday season! So try your favorite pudding flavors and see what great variations you can make! 

Today, I decided to use the vanilla pudding and the cookies were just delicious!



1 cup all-purpose flour

1 pkg. (4 serving size) instant vanilla, butterscotch or chocolate pudding mix

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 large egg

1 large egg white

2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) semi-sweet chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 350° F. 

Mix flour and pudding mix in small bowl. Beat butter in large mixing bowl on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Beat in brown sugar and baking soda until well combined. Beat in egg and egg white. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels. Drop dough by rounded teaspoon 2 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheets. 

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until set. Cool on baking sheets 2 to 3 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Started the day off right with our favorite, Waffles of insane greatness and hot cocoa!

Have a wonderfully loving Valentine’s Day! 😍

Pinwheel cookies

I’ve always wanted to make these cookies, but have a love/hate relationship with rolling dough. This year I found a simple solution. When rolling between wax paper dampen the counter space first then lay the sheets over it. The damp counter will prevent the wax paper from moving and bunching while rolling. No muss no fuss! Excellent recipe that you can adapt with your own favorite flavors and colors!



2 cups Flour
½ teaspoons Baking Powder
¼ teaspoons Salt
⅔ cups Powdered Sugar
¼ cups Granulated Sugar
2-½ sticks Butter, Cut Into Chunks
1 teaspoon Vanilla
½ teaspoons Gel Food Coloring Of Your Choice
½ teaspoons Any Desired Extracts (optional)
1-½ cup Colored Sprinkles, In Your Choice Of Colors

In a stand mixer, combine flour, baking powder, salt, and sugars with paddle on medium until well blended.
Add butter in, gradually, and continue mixing. Add in vanilla extract. At this point, your dough will form a ball on your paddle.
Remove your dough ball and divide into two equal parts. Return one portion back into the mixer and add the food coloring and any extra extracts; you’ll keep the other portion of dough plain. I used Wilton gel food coloring in leaf green and vanilla extract for this batch. You could coordinate your colors and flavors, for example green food coloring matched with a mint extract or yellow with a lemon extract, etc. Mix until the color is spread out evenly.
Roll out each portion of your dough, between two sheets of wax paper until it reaches about 11 x 9 inches and is 1/4 inch thick. Slide both sheets onto a cookie sheet and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
When firm, remove the top sheets of wax paper from both. Brush the uncolored vanilla dough lightly with water using a pastry brush. Then flip the colored dough onto the vanilla uncolored dough so they are stacked atop each other and even. Press the edges lightly with your fingertips to seal them together. Using a small paring knife, trim the edges of the dough to make straight, even lines.
Pour out sprinkles onto a large platter and set aside. Be sure your dough is still cold, but flexible. Once it’s ready, begin rolling the long side of dough into a swirl, jelly-roll style. Now, don’t get nervous if the outer layer of uncolored dough tears a bit. It’s no problem, just pinch and pat those tears and voila, then just keep rolling.
Now gently lift your dough log onto the sprinkles and roll away. Cover the log completely with your sprinkles. Wrap the colorfully decorated log in plastic wrap twice. Depending on when you want to bake the cookies, either place the wrapped dough into refrigerator for about 3-4 hours or you can put it the freezer and keep it there for up to 2 months. (If freezing, give yourself time for the dough to defrost in the fridge overnight before cutting.)
Slice your dough into 1/4-1/8 inch slices and bake on parchment lined baking sheets. Bake at 350F for 15-17 minutes until edges are slightly golden. Let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes, then move them to a cookie rack to finish cooling.

Lighter dirty Shirley

I love a good cocktail on a Friday night. But I hate drinking so many calories. Recently, my sister shared the Dirty Shirley with me. I lightened it up by using either diet sprite or my preferred method club soda!



1 ounce good vodka
5-6 ounces club soda or diet sprite
Dash/splash of grenadine

Pour vodka over ice cubes in a highball glass. Fill the rest with your soda of choice. Add in grenadine and garnish with cherries or lemons and serve immediately!

Waffles of insane greatness

I’ve made these awesome waffles before, yet decided to update and repost. These are my husbands favorite. They are crunchy on the outside, nice and soft inside, and have fantastic flavor. So for his recent birthday, I decided to revamp the recipe. I did use most of the ingredients, but had to up the flour a bit and used vanilla bean paste instead to up the vanilla flavor. They were perfect!



3/4 cup all-purpose flour (I used a full cup)
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk or buttermilk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used vanilla bean paste)
Butter and syrup, for serving

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; mix well. Add the milk, vegetable oil, egg, sugar and vanilla and mix well. Let the batter sit for 30 minutes.

Preheat a waffle iron. Do not use non-stick spray on the waffle iron; the oil in the batter will allow the waffle to release easily. Follow the directions on your waffle iron to cook the waffles. Serve immediately with butter and syrup.

Lemon cream cake with vanilla bean frosting

We were invited to my aunt and uncle’s Derby party and needed a dessert. I thought a lemon dessert would be nice and refreshing. I had recently seen this recipe and thought it would be perfect for the party! It was a hit. The cake is quite moist, the filling is to die for and the frosting is perfect. Definitely make this for your next get together. It’s impressive and delicious!




For the cake:
3 cups cake flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
16 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
Zest of ½ a lemon
2 cups sugar
5 large eggs, at room temperature
1¼ cups buttermilk, at room temperature
1 tbsp. lemon extract
1 tsp. vanilla extract

For the filling:
4 oz. mascarpone or cream cheese, cold
2½ tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1¼ cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 tsp. lemon extract
Zest of ½ a lemon
1 cup heavy cream, chilled

For the frosting:
1½ cups plus 2 tbsp. (3 sticks plus 2 tbsp.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
Pinch of salt
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tbsp. heavy cream

For the candied lemon slices: I omitted this
1-2 whole lemons, preferably organic
1 cup sugar
1 cup water

To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350° F. Butter and flour the edges of 3 8-inch round cake pans and shake out the excess. Set aside. Line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk together and set aside. Add the butter to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the lemon zest to the bowl of the mixer with the butter. Beat on medium-high speed for 3 minutes, until light and creamy in color. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat for one more minute.
Add the sugar to the butter mixture, ¼ cup at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition. Mix in the eggs one at a time until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Combine the buttermilk and the lemon and vanilla extract in a liquid measuring cup. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients alternately with the wet ingredients, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients and mixing just until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix for 15 seconds longer.
Divide the batter between the prepared baking pans. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20-22 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through baking. Let cool in the pans about 10 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack and let cool completely.
To make the filling, combine the mascarpone and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until smooth and well combined. Mix in the confectioners’ sugar and beat on low speed until incorporated. Blend in the lemon extract and lemon zest. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and set aside. Wipe out the mixer bowl and fit with the whisk attachment. Add the heavy cream to the bowl and whip on high speed until stiff peaks form, being careful not to overbeat. Mix about a third of the whipped cream into the lemon-mascarpone mixture to lighten. Gently fold in the remaining whipped cream until no streaks remain and the mixture is evenly blended.
To make the frosting, add the butter to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whip on medium-high speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the confectioners’ sugar to the bowl and mix on medium-low speed just until incorporated. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean pod into the bowl and add in the salt. Continue to beat on medium-high speed until smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Mix in the vanilla extract and heavy cream on low speed just until incorporated. Increase the mixer speed and whip on high speed until light and fluffy, scraping down the bowl as needed, about 4 minutes.
To make the candied lemon slices, wash and dry the lemons thoroughly. Use a sharp serrated knife to make very thin slices of lemon. Poke out any seeds in the slices with a toothpick. Combine the sugar and water in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Heat the mixture until the sugar dissolves. Add the lemon slices to the mixture so that they are in a single layer (none overlapping), reduce the heat to medium-low and let simmer about 20 minutes, turning the slices at least once so both sides are candied. Remove from the heat. Store in a container with the syrup until ready to use.
(Level cake layers if necessary.) To assemble the cake, place one of the layers on a serving platter. Top with half of the lemon-mascarpone mixture and smooth in an even layer. Place a second cake layer on top of the filling and top with the remaining filling. Place the final cake layer on top. Frost the top and sides of the assembled cake with the vanilla bean frosting. Use a pastry bag with a decorative tip to pipe accents on the cake. Garnish with the candied lemon slices.

Funfetti cheesecake cupcakes with cake batter cream cheese frosting

The title says it all. This dessert has cheesecake, cream cheese icing, cake batter and cake all in one. It’s awesome! I needed some desserts for our Easter celebrations and knew there’d probably be a lot of fruit flavored ones as spring always brings, so I’d thought I’d go in the other direction. Glad I did! These are incredible.




Confetti (or Funfetti) cake batter, use your favorite homemade or boxed version)-I used homemade
8 oz package cream cheese, softened
1 egg
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 and line 24 muffin tins with liners.
Spoon cake batter into each tin until it is about 1/2 full. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, egg, sugar and vanilla on medium speed until smooth. Spoon one spoonful over the top of each cupcake. Bake for about 15 minutes or until set.

Cake Batter Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 stick salted butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon Baker’s Mystery Flavor (you could omit this, I omitted as my bottle I ordered didn’t arrive in time. Darn you smart post!!)
3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup white cake mix (MIX–NOT BATTER)

In the bowl of a mixer, beat butter, cream cheese and extract(s) on medium speed until smooth. Add powdered sugar and cake mix and beat on low until just combined. Increase speed to medium-high and beat for 2 minutes. If frosting is too thick, mix in a bit of heavy cream or milk until desired consistency is reached.
Once cupcakes are cool, frost generously. And decorate as you wish!


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