A Sweet Challenge

I (Tina) recently received a gift that consisted of a box of caramel cake mix, a tub of dark chocolate frosting and a bag of Heath bits. Along with this gift came a challenge to create a dessert using these ingredients. Challenge accepted! First I thought I’d make dark chocolate caramel Heath cupcakes. Then I considered making caramel cake cookies with dark chocolate frosting and Heath sprinkles on top. I even wondered if I could use these ingredients to create an unique kind of cake pop. But the winner ended up being Dark Chocolate Frosted Heath Caramel Cake Bars. A winner indeed!

dark chocolate frosted heath caramel cake bars

Dark Chocolate Frosted Heath Caramel Cake Bars

Ingredients

  • • 1 package Signature Caramel Cake Mix
  • • 2 large eggs
  • • ¼ cup water
  • • ¼ cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • • ¼ cup butter or margarine
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • • 1 cup Heath Bits
  • 1 container of dark chocolate frosting

Baking Instructions

1.Preheat oven to 375ºF. Grease 13″x9″ pan.
2.Combine cake mix, eggs, water, brown sugar and butter in large bowl. Stir until thoroughly blended. Mixture will be thick. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread in greased pan.
3.Bake at 375ºF. for 24 to 27 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely in pan.
4. Before cutting into bars frost with Duncan Hines® Dark Chocolate Frosting. Sprinkle with Heath Bits. Cut into bars.

A Sweet Escape

We’ve been quoted a time or two saying, “Everyone deserves a break from their job”.  Ask the hubs!  We rarely consider Saturday baking  work, but we’re taking a breather anyway and leaving the indulgences up to our mom as we celebrate our niece’s first birthday. Oh there will be sweet treats galore and we will not hesitate to try them all! Enjoy your day and take a hint from us and leave the work for someone else!

P.S. Be sure to check back next week for a delicious recipe for Dark Chocolate Frosted Caramel Toffee Bars.

Sweet Riches

We have a confession and it’s worth a lot. It is impossible, inconceivable, and darn right unthinkable in our opinion to make cookies without devouring the dough! We’ve tried it and we just can’t resist.  Time and time again (especially by our mom, Nurse Cain) we’ve been told that we shouldn’t eat it, but we simply can’t help ourselves. So when a recipe was recommended (thanks Becky!) that includes eggless cookie dough we couldn’t deny ourselves the opportunity to sample it for ourselves. The name says it all: Billionaire Bars. One bite and we felt like the richest girls around!

billionaire bars

Billionaire Bars

Ingredients
1 pkg refrigerated sugar cookie crust
1 jar caramel syrup
1 cup butter, softened
¾ cup brown sugar
¼ cup white sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 tsp milk
1 & ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup miniature chocolate chips
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease a 13×9″ baking pan with cooking spray. Unwrap the sugar cookie dough and press it evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan.
Bake the sugar cookie crust for approx. 15 minutes or until center appears set and top is lightly golden. Cool completely.
In a medium saucepan, melt together the caramel until the mixture has melted and is nice and smooth. Pour the mixture over the sugar cookie crust and spread to even out.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugars until creamy. Add the vanilla and milk, beat again. Lastly, gradually add the flour until a soft dough forms. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Spread the cookie dough mixture evenly on top of the caramel layer. Place in the fridge to set, about 2 hours. Before serving, melt the remaining chocolate chips and drizzle on top of the bars. Cut and eat!

*recipe adapted from The Domestic Rebel

Endless Sweet Options

We firmly believe that there are times when there isn’t much better than dark chocolate frosted cupcakes. The only way to trump them is by adding on tasty toppings. The options are endless; caramels, M&Ms, Heath Bits, chocolate chips, coconut, butterscotch chips, pretzels. And…wait for it….Birthday Cake M&Ms! Have you tried them yet? AMAZING!  What cupcake toppings do you like best?

cupcakes

Dark Chocolate Frosted Cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 1 box of your favorite cupcake mix (plus ingredients on the back of the box)- We used Pillsbury Dark Chocolate Premium Cake Mix
  • your favorite frosting – We used Pillsbury Velvety Cream Cheese Easy Frosting and Pillsbury Decadent Chocolate Fudge Easy Frosting
  • your favorite cupcake toppings – We used dark chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, dark chocolate M&Ms, Birthday Cake M&MS, Kraft Caramel Bits, and Heath Bits.

Directions

Mix and bake cupcakes according to the directions on the back of the box. Allow to cool completely. Frost and top cupcakes to your liking. Devour!

Sweets For Sharing

This Saturday we needed something with just the right amount of ooey gooey goodiness to share with friends and family. And it needed to be something that could be whipped up in no time. Those factors led us to our favorite stand-by recipe…Bonus Brownies. “What’s the bonus?” you ask. Heath bits and Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips! Just mix them into your brownie batter, bake ’em up, and watch as your loved ones ooooo and awwww over this easy pleasy treat.

Bonus Brownies

Bonus Brownies

Ingredients

  • 1  box of your favorite brownie mix (plus ingredients on the back of the box)
  • 1 cup Heath Bits
  • I cup Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips

Directions

Make brownie batter according to the directions on the back of the box. Stir in Heath Bits and chocolate chips. Pour batter into a greased 9 x 13  pan. Bake for 30 min. Share and enjoy!

Sweet Smarts

Surely we’re not alone when we say the inventor of streusel crumb topping is a GENIUS! You don’t have to be an expert to whip up a batch and add on top of cherry pie filling to make Cherry Crisp, this Saturday’s sweet treat.  Simple and delicious – the perfect combination!

cherry crisp

Cherry Crisp

Ingredients

1 (21 ounce) can cherry pie filling
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup old fashioned oatmeal
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter

Directions:

1 Spread pie filling into a greased 9-inch square baking dish (or individual ceramic pie pans like we did).
2  Combine the next six ingredients in a bowl.
3  Cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs; sprinkle over filling.
4  Bake at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown.
5  Top with ice cream and whipped cream and dig in!

*recipe adapted from Food.com

Farewell Pumpkin, My Sweet

Can you believe Christmas has come and gone? We hope you had a happy one. We sure did! We’re ready for all the new year has to offer. But we’re certainly not ready for it to be the end of “pumpkin dessert season”, as we like to call it. We decided to share one last one.  Ring in 2014 with these scumptous Pumpkin Streusel Caramel Bars.

Pumpkin Streusel Caramel Bars

Pumpkin Streusel Caramel Bars

Prep Time: 12 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 37 minutes

Ingredients:
•1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
•3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
•1/2 cup granulated sugar
•1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
•2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
•1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
•1/2 teaspoon salt
•3 large eggs
•1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin puree
•1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
•3/4 cup vegetable oil, such as canola or corn oil

•Streusel Topping:
•3/4 cup all-purpose flour
•1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
•6 tablespoons butter, softened
•1 scant teaspoon cinnamon
•3/4 cup chopped pecans

  • caramel syrup
  • vanilla frosting

Preparation:

Grease and flour a 13×9-inch baking pan. Heat oven to 350°.
In a bowl, combine the 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup brown sugar and granulated sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt; set aside. In a mixing bowl, beat eggs, pumpkin, vanilla, and oil until well blended, scraping the bowl a few times. Stir in the dry ingredients until blended. Spread in prepared baking pan.

In another bowl, combine the 3/4 cup flour, 1/3 cup brown sugar and cinnamon. Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until crumbly; mix in the pecans with your fingers. Sprinkle evenly over the pumpkin batter. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until set. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean. Cool in pan on a rack. Drizzle with caramel syrup and vanilla frosting. Cut in squares to serve.

*recipe adapted from Southern Food

Oodles and Doodles of a Sweet Surprise

Wanna know what’s better than Snickerdoodle cookies? Snickerdoodles stuffed with Rolos!  Don’t underestimate this cookie’s ability to blow your mind. They are a game changer!

Rolo stuffed snickerdoodles

Rolo Stuffed Snickerdoodle Cookies

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 24 Rolos, unwrapped
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  1. In a stand mixer, cream butter with 3/4 cup sugar.  Add egg & vanilla & mix.
  2. Add flour, cream of tartar, salt & baking soda & mix.
  3. In a separate small bowl, combine 2 Tbsp sugar with 3/4 tsp cinnamon.  Set aside.
  4. Scoop some cookie batter, squish a Rolo in the center, pinch & smooth any seams by rolling the dough in your hands, hiding the rolo in the middle.  Then roll cookie ball into cinnamon sugar mixture. Place on a greased cookie sheet & repeat for all cookies.
  5. Bake at 325*F for 12-13 minutes.  Makes 2 dozen small cookies.

*Recipe adapted from Amber (Dessert Now, Dinner Later!)