• Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Cookies and Cream Chocolate Pop-Tarts

    You know those childhood cartoons where the characters have a goody-goody angel voice and the naughty, not-so-angelic, one fighting on their shoulders?

    What, didn’t you ever watch Tom and Jerry growing up? Well, I’d love to tell you that my metaphorical inner angel voice won out this time guys, but………then there were these pop-tarts and um……………yeah.

    In brainstorming over this idea I’d considered just making my pop-tarts inspired by milk’s favorite cookies, but I kind of didn’t want to just stop there. I also felt like there should be some actual sandwich cookies going into these at the same time. So basically, these are an oreo version of a pop-tart since you’ve got the dark chocolate cookie, or in this case, pastry, and the white vanilla cream going on in a perfect ratio. Then, THEN, you add an unapologetic amount of actual cookie crumbs to the filling AND a sprinkle on the top just for good measure.

    I was trying to rationalize how to explain why you’d want to make a pop-tart that is already pretty much an oreo on its own and then still add store-bought ones to it. All I can come up with though is, why wouldn’t you want this insane amount of cookie-ness??? My logic is undeniable right?

    So yeah, this is a recipe that you HAVE to make. Really, they were such a hit. My mom said that I somehow managed to make store-bought sandwich cookies taste better just by being with these pop-tarts and of course the boys didn’t say much of anything because they couldn’t speak around their mouths full of cookies and crea goodness.

    We had one too many boxes of Trader Joe’s Jojos in the pantry screaming to be crumbled into something delicious and there I was doing my best to resist the urge but clearly I failed miserably at it. It’s all about balance and moderation though, don’t you think?

    Come on, it’s Friday people! And for reals, what more could you ask for of a perfect weekend than some of these insanely addictive yummies!!!

    Cookies and Cream Chocolate Pop-Tarts

    A pastry treat to make all the cookies and cream lovers childishly happy.

    Prep Time 25 minutes
    Cook Time 20 minutes
    Chilling Time 30 minutes
    Total Time 45 minutes
    Servings 22 -24 pop-tarts

    Ingredients

    Pastry Dough:

    • 3 cups all-purpose flour
    • 2/3 cup sugar
    • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 cup cold coconut oil or organic vegetable shortening
    • 1/2 cup cold vegan "butter" (can replace with more shortening or coconut oil)
    • 2/3 cup ice cold water

    Filling:

    • 1/2 cup coconut oil or organic vegetable shortening softened
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons almond milk
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
    • 1 1/3 cups broken/chopped sandwich cookies i.e. jojos or oreos

    Icing:

    • 3 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/4 cup almond milk
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • pinch of salt
    • 1/2 cup more cookie pieces for topping

    Instructions

    Pastry Dough:

    1. Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, and salt in the bowl of food processor and pulse. Add "butter" and coconut oil and pulse a few times more until crumbly. Add water and process until the dough comes together, adding a tiny bit more water if necessary until it pulls away from the sides of bowl..

    Filling:

    1. Stir melted coconut oil and almond milk together in the bowl of stand mixer or a medium mixing bowl until smooth. Add salt, vanilla, and cornstarch and stir to combine. Mix in powdered sugar a cup at a time until combined then beat until fluffy. Add cookie pieced and beat just long enough to mix them into filling.

    Assemble:

    1. Roll pastry dough out on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle roughly 1/8 inch thick. Cut into smaller rectangles, about 2 1/2 x 5 inch pieces.
    2. Spoon about 1 heaping tablespoon of filling onto the centers of half of the rectangles you've cut and spread to within 1/2 inch from edges, then rub edges with water. Place the other half of the pieces on top of fillings and use a fork or your fingers to crimp the ends together to seal well. Place on a parchment lined baking tray about 1/4 inch apart and place tray in refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
    3. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C). When oven is ready, remove trays from fridge and bake for 10 - 12 minutes until the edges are starting to darken and crisp. Remove tray from oven and cool tarts completely before adding icing.

    Icing:

    1. Whisk the ingredients for the icing in a small bowl until smooth and use a spoon or knife to spread on cooled tarts. Sprinkle with cookie pieces and allow to dry (for at least 30 minutes) before serving.
  • Breakfast,  Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Black Forest Chocolate Chip Morning Buns (Vegan)

    Goooooooood morn-IN!!!!

    I made something really, really yummy for you that involves yeast and cherries……need I say more? Please tell me you are among the group of awesome peoples on the planet who agree that chocolate and cherries are a match made in heaven. Like, it doesn’t get better than waking up to this yumminess!

    So just fyi, “black forest” basically refers to anything chocolate-cherry in case you’ve never heard of it as a flavor before. I don’t remember the first time I heard of it but when I did I fell in love immediately (…..which is what I’m hoping will happen when you taste these!). It seemed like a new thing since I’d never heard of it before then, but apparently it’s from a classic German cake recipe that dates back to like the 20’s, so I guess I just don’t get out much.

    All I know is that I heard the name and my brain went straight to a song called The Dark Black Forest that was on a dance dance revolution game that my sisters and I used to have for playstation. My little brothers are major game nerds but I never really got into video gaming much when I was younger. The ones that involve dancing though, those were so much fun to me. We would play them for hours after school with our friends and see who could get the highest score. (I kinda think you have to go and listen to this song now. Just let it play as background music while you finish this post.) Omg, hearing it makes me so happy and nostalgic! I feel like the good games went out of style forever ago, but this one was a classic. Would I sound really old if I said they don’t make em like they uses to?

    Okay, so morning buns. I have name confusion when it comes to these. When I made caramel pecan rolls a few months ago I had the hardest time deciding what to call them because in my house everyone defaults to calling them “caramel cinnamon rolls” and these are ”cherry cinnamon rolls”. I decided on ”morning buns” because it seems like “sticky buns” are usually with caramel and “rolls” are usually with cinnamon and brown sugar, but I’m still confused a little.

    Some of my trusted taste testers liked these even more than cinnamon rolls, believe it or not! I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned the fact that cinnamon rolls are kind of a huge deal in my family. My mom has made her famous rolls for years and the kiddos usually ask for them for their birthdays instead of cake. The ones who liked these more than cinnamon ones said it was because the bittersweet chocolate and tart cherries help to give it a more balanced level of sweetness, whereas cinnamon rolls tend to be over the top and wind up making you feel like you never want to eat again.

    I was inspired to make these because our cherry season has seemed so short and feel like I almost missed it again this year. If it came down to a choice I’d honestly pick berries first over cherries but I’ve really been loving cherries this year more than I remember. I think they are also the perfect thing for it being Valentine’s Day weekend. I just wanted to at least make something to showcase them while it’s still summer here.

    One more thing, something awesome thing about this recipe is if you make the dough and let it slowly rise in the fridge overnight it’s a really fast fix for breakfast and the perfect way to show how much you love someone when they wake up to them. I’m telling you, these rolls could win hearts!

    Black Forest Chocolate Chip Morning Buns (Vegan)

    These buns are perfect for enjoying with your morning coffee on a special occasion. Don't worry though, they're delicious anytime of day as well, especially dessert!
    Prep Time 30 minutes
    Cook Time 45 minutes
    Rising Time 1 hour
    Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
    Servings 12 - 14 rolls

    Ingredients

    Dough:

    • 1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
    • 1 3/4 cups full-fat coconut milk warm but not hot
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 1/2 tablespoons oil plus more for greasing pan
    • 2/3 cup sugar
    • 4 1/4 cups flour plus more for work surface

    Filling:

    • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
    • 2 1/2 cups fresh cherries pitted and cut in half
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • pinch of cinnamon optional
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 cup dairy free semi-sweet chocolate chips

    Icing:

    • 2 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/3 cup coconut cream *see note
    • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • pinch of salt

    Instructions

    1. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl), dissolve yeast in milk and allow to sit for about 5 minutes until bubbly. Stir in sugar, oil, and salt until combined. Add flour a cup at a time until your dough comes together and starts to pull away from the sides of bowl. 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 and have it ready for a quick breakfast. Just pull it out about an hour before you want to use it.)
    2. Meanwhile, make your filling. Combine cherries, butter, salt, and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium low heat. Bring mixture to a soft boil, stirring gently, and cook for 10-12 minutes until the the sauce starts to thicken enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and add vanilla and cinnamon, then set aside. Grease a 13x9 inch glass pan (or 2 8x8 inch or 2 10-inch round cake pans in which case you'll have 14 rolls) and spoon a few spoonfuls of the sauce from the cherries into pan(s).
    3. Divide dough in half and roll out one half on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle, roughly 1/4 inch thick. Spread 1/2 of cherry filling in an even layer on top and sprinkle with 1/2 cup chocolate chips. Starting from the short end, roll it up until you have a log of sorts. Then using a sharp knife, cut into 6 (or 7 spirals if using a round pan) and place in prepared pan (spiral facing up). Repeat with other half of dough until you have 12 rolls. Cover pans and allow them to rise while oven preheats.
    4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 C). Bake for 30-40 minutes until edges start to brown. Remove pan(s) from oven and allow the to cool for about 5 minutes before serving.

    5. For the icing, whisk ingredients together in a medium bowl until thick and smooth. Serve on top of warm buns.

    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.

     

  • vegan oreo brownie bars recipe
    Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Holiday,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Brownie Bars (Vegan)

    Yup, you read that right, Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Brownie Bars. These are sandwich cookies, cheesecake bars, and brownies all wrapped into one.

    This post is all about Vegan Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Brownie Bars

    vegan brownie cookie cheesecake bars

    How is your life going? Good? Not so good? Well, I hope it’s the former but I’m pretty confidant that either way it’s about to get better.

    oreo cheesecake brownie bars

    I know, in the past I’ve knocked Oreos and I still haven’t changed my mind about Trader Joe’s brand being better. I just can’t get over the memory of feeling like I was eating burnt cardboard with frosting in the center. Also, they aren’t exactly health food so I figure if it’s not something I’d enjoy eating, what’s the point?

    tasty oreo cheesecake cookies

    How do you feel about Oreos?

    Oreos, jojos, whatever they’re called, I’m personally just not a huge fan. Now, when you use them as an ingredient in something like, say, brownie cheesecake layer cookie bars!, it’s a whole different story. Yeah, that I can do, Yum! If you don’t live near a Trader Joe’s I can understand you might have to use Oreos or any of the knock-off brands. I love Jo-jos most though. This is a recipe idea that I’ve wanted to try for a while, so I had to use them.

    vegan cookies and cream cheesecake bars

    See, it’s like the difference between wanting to use shortening in a recipe or eating it by itself. When I was really young we used to use shortening in frosting all the time. My grandma was a cake decorator. Of course, that was before I realized how horrible it was. But truth be told, there was a day that it went into all the fluffy stuff for our cakes. I have to say that I’ve never gotten over my feelings of aversion for their false advertising. I’m not sure what the packaging looks like now. Once upon a time my shorter self had the letdown of a lifetime because the visually alluded fried chicken was not in the can. Right there, hopes and dreams crushed forever. Just sayin’. Obviously I haven’t been vegan my entire life.

    5 layer brownie cookie cheesecake

    Then, as I’m sure many a foolish youngling has discovered in the same way, I found out that the same smooth white stuff did not taste even remotely close to the frosting we put it in. I may be a slow learner in some situations, but let me tell you, that was a mistake I’ve never made again. So gross.

    cookies and cream brownies vegan

    Let’s talk about these Cookies & Cream Cheesecake Brownie Bars

    I decided to go with calling these brownie bars because I felt cookies and cream, brownie, and cookie bars in the same title would be too confusing. In reality though, these bars are somewhere between a cookie and a brownie. I think that’s really completely awesome. They have a softer texture than a cookie but more bite than a brownie. Then they’re stuffed with, not only cheesecake, but chocolate sandwich cookies too! I’d say that’s pretty awesome. I got super close to adding peanut butter too, but then I realized how pretty they’d be if left just black and white. Peanut butter is so happening next time.

    how to make cookies and cream brownies

    I found this amazing BROWNIE PAN if you’re looking for a foolproof way to cut perfect edges. I really think you just need to try these. If you aren’t a fan of packaged cookies either, than you can just skip the jojos. You can also double the cheesecake layer instead.

    This post was all about Vegan Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Brownie Bars

    Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Brownie Bars (Vegan)

    Cookies and cream cheesecake isn't anything new, but made into these decadent bars it might just become your new favorite!

    Prep Time 30 minutes
    Cook Time 40 minutes
    Cooling Time 45 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
    Servings 24 bars

    Ingredients

    Brownie Bar:

    • 1/4 cup coconut oil melted
    • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1/4 cup applesauce or pumpkin puree
    • 1/2 cup coconut cream *see note
    • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 2/3 cup cocoa powder
    • 3 cups all purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup mini dairy free semi-sweet chocolate chips optional

    Filling:

    • 1/2 cup vegan "cream cheese", softened
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • 1/3 cup arrowroot starch (or cornstarch)
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/4 cup coconut cream *see note
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • pinch of salt
    • 30 - 40 chocolate cream filled sandwich cookies I used jojos

    Instructions

    1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) and grease a 13x9 inch glass pan. Mix coconut oil, oil, and sugar together in the bowl of stand mixer fitted with beater. Scrape sides of bowl, then add applesauce and coconut cream and mix until combined. Add vanilla, baking powder, salt, and cocoa until mixed well, then add flour one cup at a time and beat just until combined after each addition. If using, add the chocolate chips and fold in to combine.

    2. Scrape out mixer bowl into a medium bowl and save mixer bowl for making cheesecake layer. (Yay, for less dishes to wash) Divide dough in half and press one half into prepared pan. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes until top starts to darken and looks somewhat dry; remove from oven and cool while you make cheesecake filling.
    3. Beat "cream cheese" in mixing bowl with whisk attachment until completely smooth and lump free, scrape bottom of bowl and mix longer to be sure it's all smooth. Add sugar and starch and mix until creamed, then beat in lemon juice, coconut cream, baking powder, vanilla, and salt; mix until combined.

    4. Lay Jojos (or oreos) in a single layer on top of the cooled cookie layer. (You can leave a few small gaps in between any odd corners.) Pour cheesecake filling over cookie layer and crumble remaining half of chocolate dough over top. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes until the center of bars is lightly browned on top. Remove and cool for about 30 minutes then place pan in fridge and chill for at least 3 hours before serving. Cut into squares and serve chilled.

    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.

    Here are some other posts you may enjoy:

    Fudgy Peanut Butter Protein Brownies (Vegan)

    Reese Chocolate Peanut Butter Explosion Cookie Bars (Vegan)

    “Reese’s” Chocolate Peanut Butter Explosion Cookie Bars (Vegan)


    vegan oreo brownie bars recipe

  • Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Vegan Almond Vanilla White Chocolate Truffle Cookies

    These simple and delicious chocolate truffle cookies are a special treat that will have your friends and family asking for the recipe, and begging you to make them for every event.

    I can never decide between chocolate and vanilla. They are so different, they complement each other so well, and they are both so, SO good! That’s why, when I can, I choose a little of each.

    This post is all about Vegan Almond Vanilla White Chocolate Truffle Cookies

    White chocolate truffle cookies

    Although, sometimes I just want a lot of one or the other, and this time it was (obviously) vanilla..with a little bit of almond. I’ve actually had the idea for these cookies since I made their chocolate cousins (which were am-A-zing btw!). I guess I’ve got a truffle cookie obsession going on.

    cookie truffles without cream cheese

    These are every team vanilla member’s dream cookie and I think I just might like them more than chocolate. Let me think about it… yep, I do! Every bite explodes with the combined flavors of almond, vanilla, and white chocolate in a way that I can only describe as YUM! If you’re wondering where you might be able to find vegan white chocolate then definitely check online.

    vegan truffle cookies

    So these cookies totally remind me of a white wedding cake in cookie form. In fact, I now have this idea in my head for when one of my sisters gets married. How cute would it be to make these and the chocolate ones side by side together for an engagement party or wedding shower! Wouldn’t that be adorbs? So doing it.

    truffle cookie recipe

    FAQs for How to Make Vegan White Chocolate Truffle Cookies

    Can I make these with regular white chocolate?

    Of course, if you are not vegan and don’t need the non-dairy white chocolate you can use any white chocolate.

    Where can I find white chocolate for vegans?

    There are quite a few options that you can buy on Amozon. Here is my favorite but there are lots if you search “vegan white chocolate” on Amazon.

     

     

    This post is all about Vegan Almond Vanilla White Chocolate Truffle Cookies

    Vegan Almond Vanilla White Chocolate Truffle Cookies

    Ever dreamed of biting into a a piece of heaven because I'm pretty sure this these cookies are what it would taste like.

    Prep Time 25 minutes
    Cook Time 25 minutes
    Chilling Time 30 minutes
    Total Time 50 minutes

    Ingredients

    Truffle Center:

    Cookie Dough:

    Instructions

    1. First make the truffle center. Mix melted white chocolate and coconut oil together in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add extracts, salt, and powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Scrape into a bowl or container, cover, and place in fridge for about 30 minutes while you make the cookie dough.
    2. Cream "butter" and sugar in same mixing bowl (no need to wash after truffle). Add coconut cream and mix until smooth. Add soda, salt, cream of tartar, and extracts. Mix in flour until dough is well combined.
    3. After it has been close to 30 minutes remove truffle mix from fridge and use a small spoon (or your fingers) to scoop out little teaspoon sized pieces. Roll them into balls between your palms, then place on a plate or tray. You should end up with 32 to 36 balls. (if you are having trouble shaping these it may be easier to let the mixture reach room temp again and then do it.)
    4. Now roll the dough into 1 inch, about 1 heaping tablespoon each, balls and place them about 2 inches apart on parchment or silicone lined baking sheets. (If you have OCD about these things you can match the number of dough balls to how many truffles you have, or you can obviously just eat the extra truffles!) Use you thumb to make a well in the center of each dough ball and stuff a truffle inside. Squish the sides up a little and roll the dough around the truffle to cover. Place cookie back on tray and push down slightly to flatten (try to smooth out any cracks that form on the sides because the truffle center might bubble out while baking) then repeat with all cookies. Place the tray in freezer (if it won't fit you can chill the balls on a smaller plate and then put them back on tray) for about 25 minutes to get cold again.
    5. While the balls chill, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (180 C). After 25 minutes, bake for 7 - 9 minutes until the edges are just starting to turn a light tan, you want these to stay as white as possible. Remove and let them cool for about 5 minutes, but let's all be honest, we know these kinds of things are best when they're still warm and gooey from the oven!

    Recipe Notes

    I should probably also mention that these do not all come out perfectly shaped. Know that some of them will have a little filling ooze out and candy, or possibly even burn, on the pan. What I do is simply let them cool on the tray and cut the cookies away from the runaway filling (p.s. It's really good once it candies like that; baker's privilege!)
    **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.


    vegan truffle cookie recipe

  • Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Snacks,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Pie Pops (Vegan)

    Yep, that’s right, I went thereWhat could be better than a big slice of pie? How about a mini pie on a stick!…….Oh, and filled with chocolate chip cookie dough too!

    I don’t know about you but I am a huge fan of cookie dough. I mean, how could I not be. I grew up sitting on the counter next to my mom’s kitchenaid (heavily supervised by the way in case that last sentence just made you cringe) almost every time she made cookies. I’ll have you know that I was a very proficient poison checker/quality-control manager at a very young age. True story.

    Something else that may have some of you cringing is the fact that we ate the uncooked dough. Okay, so I definitely wouldn’t recommend that today. My opinion about eggs is drastically different than it used to be.

    That’s kind of all beside the point though because there are no eggs in this recipe, just plenty of sugar, chocolate, you know, all the goods. I’ve had the idea for pie pops on my list forever but just hadn’t decided what exactly I wanted to do with it. That was until I had my cookie dough light bulb moment and was like “YES!”

    The biggest fan of these was definitely my brother, because I’m pretty sure his greatest dream would be to live on a planet of chocolate chip cookie dough, but everyone loved them. Although, they disappeared so fast that I’m not even sure who all got to try them. All I know is that I will be repeating this recipe or I’ll never hear the end of it.

    So um, yeah…..just make them already!

    Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Pie Pops (Vegan)

    Cookie dough is so good on it's own....but what if we put it into some cute mini pies?!?!

    Prep Time 35 minutes
    Cook Time 25 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour
    Servings 14 -16 pies

    Ingredients

    Cookie Dough Filling:

    • 1/4 cup vegan "butter"
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • 1/4 cup brown sugar packed
    • 2 tablespoons coconut cream *see note
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup dairy free semi-sweet chocolate chips or finely chopped chocolate

    Crust:

    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 1/2 cups flour
    • 1/4 cup ice cold butter or organic vegetable shortening cubed
    • 1/4 cup cold coconut oil
    • 1/4 cup ice cold water
    • 2 tablespoons coconut cream
    • sugar for sprinkling on top
    • skewers or popsicle sticks

    Instructions

    Cookie Dough Filling:

    1. Cream butter and sugars together in bowl of stand mixer or with hand mixer. Scrape sides of bowl then add vanilla and salt, then flour one cup at a time. Stir in chocolate and roll dough into 1 1/2 inch balls
    2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) and line a tray with parchment.

    Crust:

    1. Combine flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor or large bowl and mix well. Cut in butter and coconut oil until mixture is fine and crumbly. Slowly add ice water and pulse a few times more until a dough forms.
    2. Roll out on lightly floured surface into a layer about 1/8 inch thick. Cut into 3 inch circles (or any shape you like.) Take a cookie dough ball, flatten it slightly between your palms, and place in center of one of the pastry circles, then poke a skewer or popsicle stick through the side of dough. Brush the edges of pastry with water and place another circle of pastry on top. Press edges down and use a fork to seal, then poke holes with a knife (or you can cut out cute shapes) to vent and place pies on prepared tray.
    3. Brush pies with coconut cream and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 12 -16 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Remove and cool completely before serving.

    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,  Holiday,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Sticky Caramel Pecan Sweet Rolls (Vegan)

    I can’t decide what to call these but, are they the best Friday food ever or what?

    I can’t pick a name because I keep wanting to call them cinnamon rolls but they aren’t. The way I see it, there are two types of people, team cinnamon rolls and team not-cinnamon rolls. When I was younger, my whole family was comprised of team cinnamon rolls people but now we are a mix of major fans and haters. A few of my sisters hate cinnamon and one of my brothers got ruined on cinnamon rolls for a while from eating them while he was sick, so now I’m forced to question where I stand. I’ve always been on the cinnamon rolls side but then I made these……

    This is yet again something that has been on my to-do list forever and kept getting pushed. I think it was the pecan factor. Some of you know that pecans are one of those (many) things that you can’t buy here, like none at all. Zilch. I know, isn’t that dumb? They don’t grow here and I’m pretty sure that it’s because of Chile’s strict laws on importing foods that they don’t get shipped here. So stupid. I use walnuts in their place a lot, but it’s not the same. There are some things that just aren’t the right without pecans, you know?

    I think that’s one of the main reasons I’ve put these off. I have about 1/4 of a bag of pecans left from my last trip to the States and I’ve been rationing it by sheer power of will since the holidays. I just found out that I might be getting more though. In a few weeks some close friends of ours are hosting a big group of missionaries who’re coming to Chile from the States and they’re being kind enough to bring us a few pounds worth of items in their luggage.

    Everyone else wants clothes or specialty electronic pieces but not me, my mind of course went right to food. Ingredients actually and pecans are on the top of the list. So yay, fresh pecans for me and maybe a few other little things too. With that in mind, I thought it would be a good time to finish the ones I already have. Obviously they won’t last forever so I might as well do it now.

    Oh, and about that group. I’m really excited and a little anxious about them coming because the whole bunch of them, plus another group from around here, will be coming to our house at least twice and guess who’s going to be doing a lot of cooking?

    Yay and yikes at the same time! I have been brainstorming ideas and trying to decide what to make but I haven’t officially picked anything. I should probably get on that soon, shouldn’t I? Yeah, step away from Pinterest, Tori!”

    So these sticky buns, morning swirls, caramel spirals, cinnamonless cinnamon rolls, whatever you want to call them. They are kind of amazing. They give me the urge to ask ‘Would you like some bread with your decadent caramel pecan goodness?’  because they are like so sweet and delicious! So bad for you but so good. Ok, so my verdict……….If I’m being completely honest I would still say that I’m on team cinnamon roll still, but I’m highly considering a Switzerland sort of arrangement. What about you? What team are you on and what would you call these?

    Sticky Caramel Pecan Sweet Rolls

    A classic like cinnamon rolls are hard to beat....but these pecan rolls give them a run for their money!
    Prep Time 30 minutes
    Cook Time 40 minutes
    Rising Time 1 hour
    Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes

    Ingredients

    Dough:

    • 1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
    • 1 3/4 cups full-fat coconut milk warm but not hot
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 1/2 tablespoons oil plus more for greasing pan
    • 2/3 cup sugar
    • 4 1/4 cups flour plus more for work surface

    Caramel:

    • 1/2 cup almond milk
    • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • pinch of salt
    • 1 cup coconut cup cream *see note
    • 1 cup chopped pecans divided

    Filling:

    • 1/2 cup 1 stick butter, softened until spreadable
    • 2/3 cup brown sugar

    Instructions

    1. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl), dissolve yeast in milk and allow to sit for about 5 minutes until bubbly. Stir in sugar, oil, and salt until combined. Add flour a cup at a time until your dough comes together and starts to pull away from the sides of bowl. 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 and have it ready for a quick breakfast. Just pull it out about an hour before you want to use it.)
    2. Meanwhile, make your caramel. Combine the maple syrup, almond milk, salt, and brown sugar in a large saucepan over medium low heat. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring gently until it begins to bubble. Once boiling, stop stirring and allow it to boil until the the sauce starts to thicken and the temperature reaches somewhere between 350-380 degrees F on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat and (carefully, it will bubble!) add coconut cream and vanilla, then set aside. Grease a 13x9 inch glass pan (or 2 8x8 inch or 2 10-inch round cake pans) and pour half of the caramel sauce into pan(s). Sprinkle half of pecans over caramel in the pan(s) and reserve the rest.
    3. Divide dough in half and roll out one half on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle, roughly 1/4 inch thick. Spread 1/4 cup of butter in an even layer on top and sprinkle with 1/4 cup pecans and 1/3 cup brown sugar. Starting from the short end, roll it up until you reach the other end. Then using a sharp knife, cut into 6 spirals and place in prepared pan (spiral face-up). Repeat with other half of dough until you have 12 rolls. Cover pans and allow them to rise while oven preheats.
    4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 C). When oven is hot, Pour remaining caramel evenly over tops and bake for 30 - 40 minutes until edges start to brown. Remove pan(s) from oven and allow the to cool for about 5 minutes. Loosen edges with a knife and place a large plate or tray over pan, then carefully flip pan upside-down and lift off of rolls (don't forget to scrape the extra caramel from the pan!)
    5. Serve hot and have plenty of hot tea or coffee at the ready!

    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.

     

     

     

  • Dairy Free,  Dessert,  Recipe,  Vegan,  Vegetarian

    Salted Truffle Stuffed Chocolate Brownie Cookies (Vegan)

    How tight are you with salt?

    ‘Cause me and salt, we’re (holds up crossed fingers) like this! Like, I really love salty stuff. I think it runs in my family or something. I’ve seen some of my relatives put salt on all kinds of crazy stuff. My grandpa even eats his watermelon with salt on it, something I was never brave enough to try but now, surprisingly, it sounds kind of good. I also seem to recall someone telling me that my great grandma used to salt her coffee. Hmmm, I’m not sure about that one.

    I remember a few years ago someone told me that salt is really bad for you and mentioned all of these horror stories that were supposed to prove it will make you fat and kill you young if you eat too much. I don’t really remember the details but it must have been enough to scare the daylights out of me because I went for a while trying not to eat it.

    This is the part of a conversion story where I tell you that it changed my life, I felt so much better, or I learned something amazing. But….um……. I think the only thing I learned was that I really like salt. I know, epic failure. I’m clearly not cut out for life as a health consultant. Fine, so salt may be the death of me at some point but at least I’ll go happy, right?

    If there was ever a cookie that could change your life then this is it. Have you ever heard the expression one is too many and eight is not enough? Well, just add a few zeros after that eight for these cookies and you’ve got it about right. I’m telling you, these are dangerous!

    They do require a tiny bit of patience to let the truffle part chill out, but that just gives you time to dance around the kitchen like no one’s watching! Or, more realistically, do the dishes. It’s all worth it though because the result is this pillowy soft brownie cookie that is somehow super fudgy at the same time and, not to mention, is stuffed with melty ganache! 

    I spent almost an entire day testing different versions of these. I did one with peanut butter, then one with nutella, then one with a cocoa powder based ganache because I was low on chocolate bars, and then this one with the ganache truffle inside. I think they were almost all tied but these scored slightly higher on a few small points so they won the right to be today’s star, but since they were all so good I’ve included the alternate versions in the recipe notes section if you want to try them all!

    P.S. These are best straight from the oven when they’re still hot and gooey!!!

    Salted Truffle Stuffed Chocolate Brownie Cookies

    These unassuming little cookies are filled with a decadent, melty truffle center and topped with a perfectly balancing sprinkle of sea salt.

    Prep Time 20 minutes
    Cook Time 25 minutes
    Chilling Time 30 minutes
    Total Time 50 minutes

    Ingredients

    Truffle Center: (*see notes for alternatives)

    Cookies:

    Instructions

    1. First make the truffle center. Stir melted chocolate and melted coconut oil together in a medium bowl. Add cream, salt, and powdered sugar and whisk until smooth. Scrape into a bowl or container, cover, and place in freezer for about 30 minutes while you make the cookie dough.
    2. Mix coconut oil, oil, and sugar together in same mixing bowl (no need to wash after truffle). Scrape sides of bowl, then add applesauce and coconut cream and mix until combined. Add vanilla, baking powder, salt, and cocoa until mixed well, then add flour one cup at a time and beat just until combined after each addition. Cover bowl and place in fridge.
    3. Put a few tablespoons of cocoa powder into a small bowl. After it has been close to 30 minutes remove truffle mix from freezer and use a small spoon to scoop out little teaspoon sized balls then roll quickly between your palms and dip in cocoa, then place on a plate or tray. You should end up with 32 to 36 balls. Cover tray with plastic and place in freezer.
    4. Now while those are getting cold, remove dough from fridge and roll into medium sized, about 1 1/2 tablespoon, balls and place about 2 inches apart on parchment or silicone lined baking sheets. (If you have OCD about these things you can match the number of dough balls to how many truffles you have, or you can obviously just eat the extra!)
    5. When the truffles have been in the freezer for about 25 minutes, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) and remove them from freezer.
    6. Use your thumb to make a well in the center of each dough ball and stuff a truffle inside. Squish the sides up a little and roll the dough around the truffle to cover. Place cookie back on tray and push down slightly to flatten (try to smooth out any cracks that form on the sides because the truffle center might bubble out while baking) then repeat with all cookies. Top with sea salt and bake for 7 - 9 minutes until the edges start to look done but the center still looks slightly doughy (it will finish cooking as it cools).
    7. Then.....devour!

    Recipe Notes

    *Truffle Alternatives:

    Cocoa Powder Truffle Version:

    • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
    • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt

    Nutella/Peanut Butter Truffle Version:

    **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.