• Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Funfetti Birthday Cake Batter Blizzards (Vegan)

    In case, like my 7-year-old sister Sophie, you feel the need to ask who’s birthday it is, you can hold off right there. I mean, does it technically have to be someone’s birthday to have funfetti cake and ice cream….? Um, I’m gonna go with absolutely not! Hey, life is basically one big huge party happening all around us and the very fact that you’re here to be a part of it should be enough of a reason to celebrate all on it’s own, don’t you think? We’re walking miracles, you and I. Oh, and plus it’s the weekend!

    So I never really was into eating cake batter when I was little. Brownie batter or cookie dough, definitely yum, but not cake batter. I actually seem to remember disliking it quite a bit for some reason. It wasn’t until I started baking all the time and adapting recipes that I realized how delicious plain and simple cake batter could be.

    With all the crazy shenanigans that I get into in the kitchen, I have to confess, there have been more than a few times when I’ve had to double check to make sure I added enough salt or something, (or worse, didn’t add way too much) and thereby saved an entire cake recipe from disaster. At least, that’s the excuse I’ve got ready to use in case I ever get caught excessively face-shoveling “testing” a new batter or have to explain why I’ve got chocolate all over my face. #closetcakebatteraddict

    I realize that there are those who think it’s really gross or even unsafe to eat raw cake batter because of the eggs, but don’t worry guys, there aren’t any raw eggs in these. On the other hand, this epic creation does have plenty of cake batter flavor going on by simply adding in some cake mix, homemade cake mix.

    I had the hardest time in trying to decide what I wanted these creations to be. First, I was planning to just make cake batter blizzards, but then I realized how much better it would be to have big fat chunks of actual frozen birthday cake (with frosting!!!!) mixed in. I mean, that’s what a blizzard is all about anyway, the chunks! In case you never went to a DQ growing up and don’t know what a blizzard is, it’s basically super thick soft-serve ice cream that’s loaded with pieces of whatever yummy things you can think to throw in. And then there’s their policy about being able to turn it upside down (without it falling out, obviously) or you get it free.

    I can proudly admit that these blizzards passed my personal test, however by the time I’d finished messing with my props and stuff they weren’t so solid anymore so I didn’t get a completely inverted shot to prove it. This is good news for you though, you know why? Well, because now you’ll just have to make them to find out! See, it was all part of my plan to encourage you to make them, yep.

    But what I was trying to tell you before I got distracted; these blizzards are a base of cake batter flavored ice cream, with plenty of sprinkles, but then you add pieces of frosted cake with sprinkles, then you top them off with some extra cake and even more sprinkles, and did I mention that there are going to be some sprinkles in this? Oh, and if you’re wondering why my sprinkles look unique it’s because I’m a weirdo and made them myself.

    Okay, so to make these is super easy and if you happen to have an actual birthday coming up I’d say that you should for sure plan to have lots of leftover cake for this purpose. If not though, I’ve included a simple vanilla cake and frosting recipe that you can make for your cake pieces. It makes way more than you’ll need for a single blizzard but I can’t imagine a world where this is a bad thing!

    What are you all waiting for, think up something to celebrate and go grab some spoons!!!

    Funfetti Birthday Cake Batter Blizzards (Vegan)

    If you're favorite flavor as a kid was funfetti then this frozen treat's got ya covered! Careful, brainfreeze is legit. ;P

    Servings 2 - 3 servings (+ extra cake)

    Ingredients

    Blizzards:

    • 2 cups non-dairy vanilla ice cream
    • 3 tablespoons almond milk
    • 1/4 cup funfetti or vanilla cake mix check ingredients if vegan

    OR

    • 3 tablespoons flour
    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 3 tablespoons sprinkles plus more for topping (I prefer to buy naturally colored)
    • 1 heaping cup loosely packed birthday cake cubes (use your own or recipe follows)

    Cake/Cupcakes:

    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 1/4 cup 1/2 stick vegan butter, softened (or organic vegetable shortening)
    • 1 cup full fat coconut milk
    • 2 teaspoons lemon juice or vinegar
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 cup sprinkles

    Frosting:

    • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/4 cup 1/2 stick vegan butter, room temp (or organic vegetable shortening)
    • 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon almond milk
    • additional sprinkles optional

    Instructions

    Blizzards:

    1. Combine vanilla ice cream, almond milk, and "cake mix" in a blender and pulse until combined. Add 1 cup of birthday cake cubes and 3 tablespoons sprinkles and pulse just until combined. Scrape the blizzards into glasses and top with additional sprinkles and cake cubes if desired. Serve immediately

    Cake/Cupcakes + Frosting:

    1. Preheat oven to 350° F(180° C) and combine butter and sugar in large mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Beat in coconut milk, lemon juice, salt, vanilla, and baking powder. Add flour and stir until smooth then stir in sprinkles.
    2. Grease and flour a 6-count cupcake pan or a 5x9 inch loaf pan. Pour batter into pan (divide evenly between slots if using cupcake pan). Bake for 15 - 18 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

    Frosting:

    1. Beat butter (or shortening) in a large mixing bowl until creamed. Add vanilla, salt, and powdered sugar a half cup at a time. Add milk beat until light and fluffy. Add a little more milk if needed for a smoother consistency.
    2. When cake is cooled, cut it lengthwise down the center and spread the frosting on one half. Place second half on top and then spread remaining frosting over the rest of the cake. Put the cake in an airtight container and place in freezer to chill until very cold. After at least 1 hour remove cake from freezer and chop into cubes, then return to freezer until ready to use.
    3. Alternatively, if making in cupcakes, you can frost the cupcakes with a pastry bag or a spatula as you would normally frost them. The basic idea is to get chunks of frozen frosting without it getting blended into the blizzard too much. [Another option is to keep the cake and frosting completely separate; Just spread frosting on a cutting board and freeze until solid, then chop into chunks and mix evenly together with cooled and frozen cake cubes.

     

  • Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Throwback!: Homemade Vegan Dunkaroos (Cookies+Frosting Dip)

    How about a little throwback for today?

    I was feeling a bit nostalgic all week long and I thought some of you might understand. Plus, it’s Friday and I wanted to share something extra fun this weekend and then I thought of dunkaroos and there was just no other option, they had to happen!

    Do you guys remember moon shoes and wonder balls? Oh, or betty spaghetti? Ah, the innocent days of Disney channel Xenon marathons and warhead battles in footy jammies, how I miss them sometimes. I’ve never given it much thought, but it’s kind of cool that my generation was born around the turn of the century. I mean, I only experienced a few years of the 90’s but it was plenty for me to feel like I got the full experience. It’s weird to think about the fact that I have younger siblings who never even saw the last century. Wow, that makes me feel old.

    Whenever my siblings and I hear our parents mentioning the things that were popular in their childhood that seem so ancient to us we joke about how our kids are going to look at things like vhs tapes and gameboys and think the same thing about us. I can imagine it now, “Mom, you mean you actually had to put a dvd in every time you wanted to watch a movie?”  or “How did you survive without wi-fi?” 

    You kind of had to be there to get some of those things, but at least tell me you these! Dunkaroos were one of those foods that my mom didn’t usually stock our pantry with, and looking back now I can see her wisdom, but as reverse psychology goes that bumped them to the top of the most desirable list. I remember eating them at friend’s houses a few times  or maybe trading lunches at school. But what they really remind me of are the days at my grandparents house because I’m pretty sure my Nonnie made it a point to never let her pantry run out of them for us grandkids. They were just one of the foods that seemed so exciting at the time. In all fairness to my mom though, I think a box of saltines would have even been more exciting in Nonnie’s cupboard merely for being there.

    I always wondered why they stopped making this favorite snack of my generation. We’ve speculated that it probably had to do with the lack of nutritional value, but if that is the reason I think someone should seriously take the hand of the guy in charge and lead them down the grocery aisles pointing out everything from fruity pebbles to snackables. Hello, clearly there are worse options here.

    I tend to be a little bit on the fence sometimes when it comes to a perfectly balanced food pyramid, but I think everyone needs to taste this classic snack at least once in their life. Also, making them at home means they taste so much better than even my memory of the real thing. They are also a really simple and fun thing to make with the kiddos and you can do any shaped cookies that you want. I kind of thought the elephants were 100% adorables but I’m sure if you wanted you could hunt down a kangaroo shaped cookie cutter online to make them as close to the original as possible. I also used homemade sprinkles so these were completely from scratch, but of course any sprinkles will work.

    What do you say, don’t the kids of the 21st century deserve this experience? I say bring on the dunkaroos!

    (p.s. I always felt they were skimping a little on the frosting to cookie ratio in those little packages, but guess what, making them yourself gives you the power to correct this injustice!!…….)

    Throwback!: Homemade Vegan Dunkaroos (Cookies+Frosting Dip)

    Sometimes you just have to be a kid in the kitchen and create childhood favorites. Every 90's kid will remember this fun snacktime treat!

    Prep Time 25 minutes
    Cook Time 25 minutes
    Total Time 50 minutes
    Servings 10 - 12 servings

    Ingredients

    Cookies:

    • 1/2 cup vegan "butter" softened (or organic vegetable shortening)
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1/2 cup coconut cream softened
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    • 4 cups all-purpose flour

    Frosting:

    • 3 1/4 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/2 cup vegan "butter" softened (or organic vegetable shortening)
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 tablespoons almond milk
    • 1 cup sprinkles I used homemade but if using store-bought I recommend naturally colored ones

    Instructions

    Cookies:

    1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (160 C) and line a few cookie sheets with parchment or silicone mats. Cream "butter" and sugar in a large bowl, then scrape sides and beat in coconut cream, vanilla, baking powder, and salt. Add flour a cup at a time and beat until dough is well mixed.
    2. Divide dough into halves and roll out each portion, one at time, on a lightly floured surface in a layer about 1/4 inch thick. Use cookie cutters to cut desired shapes or just a sharp knife to cut squares. Place cookies side by side about 1/4 inch apart (no need for much spacing because these don't spread) and bake for 7 to 9 minutes until edges are lightly golden. Remove and cool completely before frosting.

    Frosting:

    1. Beat "butter" in a large mixing bowl until creamed. Add vanilla, salt, and powdered sugar one cup at a time. Add milk and beat until light and fluffy. Fold in sprinkles with a rubber spatula and spoon mixture into individual little cups to serves with cookies!
  • Breakfast,  Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Chocolate Glazed Cream Filled Doughnuts

    Do you have any idea how many puns can be made about doughnuts?

    There are at yeast more than you can overlook or glaze over. You probably doughnut even want to know! Ha, sorry but did I mention how for some reason my peeps have been in a punny mood recently? Especially Liv, I think she’s about to drive everyone crazy with the way she’s been cranking them out.

    On a side note, I really need to just confess to you guys that I was looking at my recent recipes the other day and I realized that there’s been a serious lack of healthy-er/ish recipes going on. If you could see my face right now you’d notice the look of undeniable shame coming over it. I’m a cotton-headed-ninny-muggins-food-role-model-failure! It’s honestly not because I don’t make healthy foods. As much as my brothers try, I promise my family doesn’t actually live on cupcakeschipshomemade snicker’s bars, and all manner of fried foods.

    I do a huge amount of cooking that’s not for the blog. In fact, I probably only share about 5% of the recipes I make because I always overthink things and that usually means that I decide my healthier creations are too boring for your time and notice. I am determining right now to make some extremely healthy things to share soon. If anyone has any ideas or cravings tell me in the comments because I’m always open to suggestions.

    Okay, but back to doughnuts because that’s why we’re all here, obviously. I mentioned sometime right before Mother’s Day that I was planning to make doughnuts for the occasion because they are probably my Mom’s ultimate weakness, and she’d tell you that herself. For that reason I have another confession to make regarding this subject; there was a day prior to me becoming a crazy food-making machine when we would have to buy doughnuts when the craving hit (Eh-hem…..and I may have had more than a few Krispy Kreme chocolate cream filleds growing up). I’m pretty sure there are more than a few other companies that received the benefits of our purchases over the years also, but that was before I had a deep-fryer.

    There is one of our doughnut stories that was unforgettable. First let me say that along with her resolve to find the best food around, my mom has this talent for finding those unassuming hole-in-the-wall places that no one else would try based on face-value and yet they always turn out to be amazing. When we first moved to Idaho there was this one place she heard about that we decided to try on one of our first nights there. We got there just minutes after they’d closed but she could see that there were still employees behind the counter, and more importantly that they had the next morning’s doughnuts ready. I don’t think those poor dudes or any of my family will forget my mom excitedly banging knocking on the window trying to get there attention or the terrified look they got when she did.

    Oh my goodness, I’m pretty sure they thought she was a psychotic woman about to start trying to break the window glass with the nearest trash cans or something. Hey, but it ended in her victory. She got dem doh-dohs and true to her talent they ended up being the best in town even after further investigations were done. Look, we take these matters seriously, okay? Doughnut quality is no laughing matter.

    With that being said, if you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at making your own then you have got to try this recipe because it’s been decided that they were the best I’ve ever made. Honestly, they aren’t very difficult and the rise time passes by pretty quickly when you’re busy making and doing “poison checks” on your filling. You know what I’m sayin’? I have complete faith that you can pull these off guys.

    Come on, you know your Monday needs this so bad!

    Chocolate Dipped Frosting Filled Doughnuts

    No need to drive to the bakery when you can make your favorite doughnuts right at home! You're welcome/ my apologies. 😉

    Prep Time 30 minutes
    Cook Time 30 minutes
    Rising Time 1 hour 30 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour
    Servings 16 - 18 doughnuts

    Ingredients

    • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
    • 1/3 cup sugar
    • 1 cup slightly warm water
    • 1/2 cup coconut milk
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    • Oil for frying

    Chocolate Glaze:

    • 1/4 cup almond milk
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 2 tablespoons coconut oil melted
    • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
    • 2 1/2 cups organic powdered sugar

    Buttercream Filling:

    • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/2 cup 1 stick vegan butter, room temp
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 tablespoons almond milk

    Instructions

    1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with beater attachment (or a large bowl), dissolve yeast in water and allow to sit for about 5 minutes until bubbly. Beat in coconut milk and sugar, and salt. Add about 2 cups flour, one cup at a time, until your dough comes together and pull away from the sides. Now switch the attachment to a dough hook and add up to 1/2 cup more flour as need until the dough is smooth and resilient. Cover bowl with a damp towel or plastic wrap and place in warm place to rise until doubled in size. (Alternatively, you can refrigerate the dough overnight.)
    2. When dough is ready, roll it out on a lightly floured surface into a layer about 1/2 inch thick. Use a circular cookie cutter with a diameter of about 3 inches (or you can use the mouth of an inverted cup) to cut out circles. Place the doughnuts on a tray and allow them to rise for 30 to 45 minutes.
    3. After they've been rising for close to 25 minutes, heat oil to 350 degrees F (180 C) in a deep fryer or wide pot and line a plate with paper towels. Drop doughnuts, a few at a time, gently into oil and fry on each side for about 1 minute or until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on prepared plate.

    Chocolate Glaze:

    1. Whisk all the ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl until completely smooth. Pour it into a shallow dish and dip the tops of doughnuts one by one and place on a parchment lined tray to dry. 

    Buttercream Filling:

    1. Beat butter in a large mixing bowl fitted with whisk attachment until creamy. Add vanilla, salt, and powdered sugar one cup at a time. Add milk and beat until light and fluffy. Add a bit more milk or powdered sugar if needed for it to be a thick but pipe-able consistency.
    2. Now fill a pastry bag fitted with a long narrow tip with the buttercream. Use a sharp skewer to poke holes into the sides of each doughnut then pipe the filling into holes to fill each one.
    3. These are best served as soon as possible!
  • Appetizers,  Dairy Free,  Gluten Free,  Main Course,  Recipe,  Sides,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Salsa Verde Brown Rice Tortilla Soup (Vegan+GF)

    I thought I’d share something with a little bit of Mexican flair today, you game?

    To be completely honest, I’ve never understood why this soup is referred to as tortilla soup when most variations of it don’t involve tortillas at all. Maybe because it’s supposed to be served with them. Whatever the case it’s delicious and it’s always a favorite.

    It’s really fast and easy to make and it’s perfect for weeknights when you want something quick and easy. I actually made it in the crock-pot once and it turned out amazing.

    Most of the time I’ll top it with something creamy like coconut yogurt or cashew yogurt for that “sour cream-ish” flavor. Also, feel free to spice it up if your family likes it hot. Top it with some fresh chives, and maybe a little guac if you like, and then serve it with tortilla chips for dipping. Also, don’t forget the cilantro!

     

     

    Salsa Verde Brown Rice Tortilla Soup (Vegan+GF)

    Nothing warms the soul quite like a bowl of hot soup and this one brings all the classic Mexican flavors.

    Prep Time 15 minutes
    Cook Time 55 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
    Servings 8 servings

    Ingredients

    • 1 cup uncooked long grain brown rice
    • 3 cups water plus more as needed
    • 2 teaspoons salt
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil optional
    • 1 medium onion diced
    • 1 jalapeño pepper seeded and diced
    • 4 cloves garlic minced
    • 1 large zucchini diced
    • 2 medium tomatoes diced
    • 1 cup whole kernel corn off the cob
    • 1/2 cup cooked white beans
    • 1/2 cup cooked black beans
    • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro finely chopped
    • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
    • 3 cups vegetable stock
    • 1/4 cup full fat coconut milk or non-dairy yogurt
    • 2 tablespoons salsa verde
    • 2 teaspoons cumin
    • 1 teaspoon chili powder
    • 2 teaspoons oregano
    • 1 teaspoon black pepper
    • salt and pepper to taste

    Optional Toppings:

    • cilantro
    • coconut milk or non-dairy yogurt
    • avocado slices
    • tortilla chips
    • lime juice

    Instructions

    1. Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a large pot and add the salt and brown rice. Cover and reduce heat to low and simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the rice is tender and has absorbed the water (add more water as it cooks if necessary).
    2. While the rice is cooking, heat the olive oil in a medium to large skillet and add garlic, onion, and jalapeños. Saute over medium high heat for about 5 minutes until browned and fragrant then add zucchini and cook for about 5 minutes longer until tender. Remove pan from heat.
    3. When rice is nearly finished cooking, Add the contents of skillet to the pot along with tomatoes, corn, beans, cilantro, lime juices, and vegetable stock and bring to a boil.
    4. Add the coconut milk, salsa verde, and spices and allow soup to cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often, until the rice is completely tender. If it starts to get too thick just add additional water. Reduce heat to a simmer again and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
    5. Serve hot with desired toppings!

  • Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Raspberry Filled Chocolate Chip Cupcakes (Vegan)

    I’m going to sound like a broken record, but……is it genuinely, actually, truly Friday already, for reals?

    This week was yet another blur that passed me without my permission. Why does this keep happening to me? I just realized that Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and I haven’t even thought about it until today. Or yesterday actually, but same difference. Summer is almost halfway gone and it’s one of the best things about where I live.

    I feel like I’m constantly complaining about the seasonal differences of living in the Southern Hemisphere versus the Northern. It’s just hard to get used to bright sun and warm breezes replacing your Christmas snow, but I should probably be more adult about it and stop whining, you know? I’ll try to work on that.

    However, as much as I miss the snow, there are also some perks to switching hemispheres and one of my personal favorites is the fact that the beautiful bounty of berries (try saying that ten times fast) is at its peak for Valentine’s Day here, so I get to use them in all of my romantically inspired recipes. We also have a gorgeous variety of different flowers in our proximity that are perfect for adding to photos.

    Speaking of hearts and flowers day, am I the only one who spends the day feeling like it a much more appropriate name for it would be “rub-it-in-your-face-that-you’re-still-single-day”? Just a thought. I usually try to forget the whole thing for the most part except for where recipes are involved. Yeah, kind of depressing. But let’s not focus on that, I can still have fun just celebrating all the lovebirds among us (and, eh hem, secretly hoping to join them in the not too distant future). Sorry for my tangent, what was I getting at? Oh yeah, berries!

    I think I’ve mentioned a few times how much of a berry addict I am, and well, I’m very fortunate for the fact that I live in an area that is one of the berry growing capitals of the world. Does that make me the happiest person ever? You bet! I make the most of it by scarfing as many berries as I can fit in my mouth all summer long and then I freeze all the extras for the winter like a squirrel with acorns. It’s probably a certifiable condition but I think I can live with that. I’m serious about my berries.

    Raspberries are my favorite though, and when you combine them with cake and chocolate you’ve got a sweet that would win over any reluctant heart, which makes them perfect for February. I used fresh raspberries to make a simple raspberry cream filling and then you mix some of the extra with your frosting. I also did two-sided frosting, which looks fancy and difficult, but it’s super easy. Okay, and did you guys know that chocolate chunks in a cupcake is a major win? Because it totally is! Like the kind of win that makes you never want to do differently. A life changing thing.

    Liv and I agreed that I need to do the same thing for Ryder’s birthday cake next month. Yes, he’s almost a year now and we are having fun planning a little bash to celebrate. You know, for (air quotation marks with fingers) Ryder. Obviously he won’t remember much, if any, of the day but first-time aunties and first-time mommies get to go all out for these things if they want to. It’s a law somewhere. She decided on a minion theme and it’s going to be adorbs.

    So, I’ve got a lot of catch up to do this weekend but I wanted to share these cupcakes first. I hope you all have plenty of time to make them for your Valentine or just for the peoples you love who love all things chocolate and sweet. Happy weekend!

    Raspberry Filled Chocolate Chip Cupcakes (Vegan)

    Plain vanilla cupcakes are always delicious, but sometimes a little more flavor is fun too. These raspberry chocolate cupcakes are the perfect way to celebrate any occasion.

    Prep Time 35 minutes
    Cook Time 45 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
    Servings 12 - 14 cupcakes

    Ingredients

    Cake:

    • 1/2 cup oil
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1 cup plant-based milk
    • 1 cup non-dairy plain yogurt
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 2 1/4 cups flour
    • 1/3 cup dairy-free semi-sweet chocolate chips

    Filling:

    • 1/3 cup fresh raspberries
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 2 cups powdered sugar
    • 3 tablespoons vegan "butter" softened

    Frosting:

    • 1/2 cup 1 stick vegan "butter", softened
    • 3 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons plant-based milk

    -

    • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
    • 1 tablespoon plant-based milk

    -

    • Additional fresh berries and chocolate chips for topping as desired

    Instructions

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) and grease (or line with paper liners) a 12-count cupcake pan.
    2. In a medium mixing bowl. Add sugar, oil, yogurt, milk, and vanilla. Stir in the salt, baking powder, and flour until smooth, then add chocolate.
    3. Spoon batter into pan and fill each slot nearly to the rim. Bake for 22 - 25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow them to cool for about 5 minutes then loosen from pan and place on cooling rack to finish.

    Filling:

    1. Pour the raspberries into a medium bowl and mash with a whisk. Add the other ingredients for filling and whisk until smooth.

    Frosting:

    1. Beat butter with 1 cup of powdered sugar, then slowly add in the rest. Add salt, vanilla, and milk and beat until light and fluffy. Divide in half and beat cocoa powder and additional tablespoon of milk into one half and add about 3 tablespoons of the prepared filling to the other half.
    2. Fill a pastry bag fitted with star tip with remaining filling and pipe into centers of cupcakes. To frost cupcakes with striped frosting fill two separate piping bags (without tips) with each flavor. Put both bags in a larger piping bag with large star tip and pipe frosting on your cupcakes.
    3. Top cupcakes with raspberries and chocolate chips if desired.

     

     

  • Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Tiny Frosted Gem Butter Cookies (Vegan)

    Mini foods are just more fun, aren’t they?

    It’s almost time to call it a year, but before we do I think there should be a few more cookies for good measure. You know, because those new year’s resolution diets aren’t gonna be very friendly with the cookies. And this year we’re all going to stick to it and not fall off the wagon right?….uh huh, yep, ’cause that’s totally gonna happen. Hey, it’s the thought that counts.

    In all seriousness though, I do have plans to make this year more focused on making foods that are packed with nutrition and that use all whole ingredients, but I can’t deny the fact that I have memory of falling into the trap of resolution failure more than once in my life. Maybe reverse psychology is a better way to go this time around.

    Oh, and speaking of memories, am I the only one that seems to have rose-colored childhood food memories? I mean, I know that I’m repeating myself. Plus, I’m pretty sure that in most cases my memory is way over exaggerated, but it’s easy to forget this and get stuck craving an old favorite treat and wanting it to taste exactly like it used to.

    I recently remembered this one food memory that stood out in particular, gem cookies. My mom had this friend who would bring her these delicious little bite-size cookies from a local bakery near her house and every time I saw that familiar white paper bag with the pink letters I would get so excited because I knew they were those cookies.

    I wanted to do my best to recreate the specific flavor of these little sweets because they were so good! They weren’t your typical dry, crusty frosted shortbreads, they were melt-in-your mouth buttery and had the perfect ratio of frosting to cookie. Plus, the itty-bittyness of them made them perfect for popping into your mouth one right after another. So addictive.

    Something else that was kind of unique to said cookies was the icing that was tall and buttery, yet it didn’t smash when you piled the cookies into a bag. I’ve never made a frosting with all of these characteristics but I was determined to find one. I knew that it would need to be thick and pipe-able like buttercream. My final result seemed pretty close to what I was going for so I’m pretty happy with it.

    I actually made these weeks ago, but I had so many recipes that I wanted to post for Christmas that I thought I’d push these back a bit and save them for New Year’s. Seeing them all clustered together kind of reminds me of fireworks so I thought they would be fitting. The fun thing about them is that you can make them any color you want so they are the perfect little treat to share with friends and family all year long. Just think how cute pastels would be for Easter or red white and blue for summer!

    And of course, if you don’t feel like taking the time to make them so small, feel free to make them as big as you’d like. I don’t have a cookie cutter the size that I wanted so I used the back of a piping tip and it worked really well to get the tiny circles (except for the few the wanted to get stuck, but you just have to push them out with a toothpick). I can be a bit persistent when I set my mind on an idea #Obsessive Much.

    However you want to do them is up to you. I just really hope you love them!

    Tiny Frosted Gem Butter Cookies (Vegan)

    Sometimes the best things come in the smallest packages and these little bites of sweet goodness certainly prove it! These are perfect for birthdays and tea parties all year long!

    Prep Time 35 minutes
    Cook Time 15 minutes
    Servings 12 servings (about)

    Ingredients

    Cookies:

    • 1/2 cup coconut oil or vegan butter, softened
    • 1/2 cup full-fat coconut cream *see note
    • 1 cup organic cane sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
    • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

    Icing:

    • 1/3 cup aquafaba liquid from a can of garbanzo beans
    • 3 tablespoons coconut oil melted
    • 3 3/4 cups powdered sugar
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract use clear vanilla if you want a pure white icing
    • dash of salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract optional
    • A few drops of natural food coloring

    Instructions

    1. Cookies:
    2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) and line a baking tray with parchment paper or silpads. Combine oil, coconut cream, and sugar in a large mixing bowl and beat until creamed. Add the almond, vanilla, and salt and beat until mixed. Add in the flour a cup at a time until evenly combined but don't overmix.
    3. Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface and use a 1-inch round cookie cutter or any tool you have for making tiny circles (about 3/4 inch). For example, I used the back of an extra large pastry tip.) Place them about 1/4 to 1/2 inch apart on tray and bake for 6 - 8 minutes, watching carefully until edges start to brown. Remove from oven and cool completely before adding icing.
    4. Icing:
    5. Add the aquafaba to the bowl of a stand mixer. Turn mixer to high speed and whip until stiff peaks form. Turn speed to lowest setting and add vanilla, salt, and almond until incorporated, then slowly start adding the powdered sugar. Mix until evenly combined then add the coconut oil (or shorteninand turn speed back up to high and whip for at least 3 minutes until it's light and fluffy. Divide the frosting into as many bowls as the colors you want and mix in food coloring last.
    6. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a small star tip, or desired tip, with the icing and pipe little stars on each cookie. Allow them to sit out until the frosting hardens or you'll squish it. Once dry, store in an air-tight container.

    Recipe Notes

    If you have trouble finding coconut cream at your local grocery store it's completely fine to use full-fat coconut milk and scrape the cream off of the top. Just be sure that it's cold enough to separate.

  • Breakfast,  Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Gluten Free,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Double Chocolate Chunk Zucchini Bread (Vegan+GF)

    I just came out of my internet procrastination daze and had one of those oh-crud-I’m supposed-to-be-doing-something moments.

    Yep, those are the best aren’t they? So, I know it’s only Monday, I hope you all had a killer weekend by the way, but I thought I’d start off the week with a little bit of chocolate. Okay fine, a lot of it. Mondays just need loads of chocolate sometimes, you feel me? Hey, there are vegetables in this bread too, so I think that makes it completely acceptable as breakfast. True story.

    Although, the honest to goodness truth is that this is an luscious cake disguised behind it’s green veggie and loaf shaped facade. You know what though, honesty when chocolate is involved is overrated. Let’s stick with calling it “bread”. It’s a plan.

    So, I’m realizing that my fake Fall is actually more like it’s own season. Have you ever tried to imagine a unique color past the ones our eyes can see? I think it’s impossible and it makes my head hurt trying, but it’s a weird thought isn’t it? Yeah, well that’s what my current seasonal situation feels like. I’m living in a 5th season that is unique to the 4 we all know of. The only thing is I can’t decide whether it’s ‘sprall’, ‘sprautumn’, or ‘fring’. I think ‘sprall’ is good. ‘Sprautumn’ sounds like an unmentionable body part and I can’t hardly say ‘fring’ with a straight face. So sprall it is, and in that case, I’m liking this particular ‘sprall’ the most so far.

    The spring half has been getting me excited. My awesome brother-in-law just scrubbed down and seasoned (properly, not my halfway style of doing it that didn’t work) this giant wok thingy we have that has been trying to rust itself to death over the past month. He made it look brand new again somehow so I can’t wait to try it on the grill. Oh yeah, we did our official first grill-out of the season the other day and it was awesome even if it was a bit chilly out still. The whole warming up aspect of my “sprall” is pretty nice, I must admit.

    Then for the autumn side of things, I broke out my pumpkin pie spice and now there’s no going back until the years over. I am in full holiday baking gear and I’ve already started planning and getting ideas of things for December. I also can’t wait to have a scary movie fest with those of my siblings that enjoy them with me. As of this year, I’m pretty sure I’m the biggest fan but two of my sisters both enjoy them too and then two of my brothers both try to make it through the suspense without bailing (This usually doesn’t work though). Haha, then two of my other sisters pretty much avoid them at all costs.

    Also, I think I have a caramel problem. I just seem to want to put it in, on, and swirled with everything. Prepare for some serious caramel coming your way from this direction. But there’s no caramel in this bread (hey, that’s a dangerous idea though), just plenty of chocolate goodness. Oh, and don’t let the veggie detail freak you out ’cause I promise you won’t even remember it’s in there. Okay, you’ll remember but you won’t care.

    Chocolate makes Monday happy.

    Double Chocolate Chunk Zucchini Bread (Vegan+GF)

    Adding green veggies to your dessert may sound like a terrible idea, but trust me, this recipe will totally change your mind.

    Prep Time 15 minutes
    Cook Time 55 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour
    Servings 1 loaf (8-12 servings)

    Ingredients

    Bread:

    • 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
    • 1 cup coconut palm sugar (or 3/4 organic cane sugar)
    • 2 flax "eggs" 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal+ 6 tablespoons water
    • 1/3 cup applesauce
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 tablespoon baking powder
    • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
    • 2 cups whole wheat flour replace with gluten free flour if needed
    • 1/2 cup dairy free semi-sweet chocolate chunks or chips (optional)
    • 2 cups shredded zucchini

    Icing:

    • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
    • 2 tablespoons almond milk
    • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 cup organic powdered sugar

    Instructions

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) and grease a 5x9-inch loaf pan.
    2. Whisk together coconut milk, coconut sugar, and flax "eggs" in a medium bowl. Add applesauce, salt, vanilla, and baking powder. Stir in cocoa then add zucchini and 1/4 cup chocolate chunks. The mixture will be pretty thick by this point. Now use a large spatula to fold in the flour as evenly as possible.

    3. Scrape the batter into pan and sprinkle remaining chocolate on top. Bake for 45 - 55 minutes hour until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool.

    4. While bread is baking make your icing by whisking all ingredients together in a small bowl until smooth. Pour over bread once cooled.