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Friday, October 28, 2011

Healthy Pumpkin Muffins.

It's that time of year again. Time to break out the pumpkin recipes! This year I decided to make pumpkin muffins, however, I wouldn't exactly call them muffins, they're more like muffin tops. I thought they would rise like a typical muffin but these little babies stayed the way they looked when I put them into the oven. They're short and bite-size, but let's be honest, everyone's favorite part of the muffin is the top anyway so I don't think this was a problem. At about 80 calories a piece, 1 gram of fat and 14 grams of carbs, these are not only healthy, but extremely delicious! Enjoy!!!

Pumpkin Muffins with Cinnamon Glaze:

3 cups oatmeal.
2 tbsp. baking powder.
1 tsp. baking soda.
1/4 tsp. salt.
1/2 tsp. cinnamon.
1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice.
2 cups pumpkin.
1/4 cup brown sugar.
1/2 cup apple sauce.
2 eggs.
1 tsp. vanilla.

Grind oatmeal in food processor to fine crumbs. Combine all dry ingredients except for sugar. In a seperate bowl combine all liquid ingredients and sugar. Combine liquid with dry ingredients. Spoon into paper lined muffin pans.
Bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Drizzle with glaze.

Glaze:
1/4 cup powdered sugar.
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon.
2 tbsp. water.

Stir to combine; add water to drizzle consistency.


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Chip Pretzel Cookies.

As usual, I was thinking of some kind of new cookie recipe to whip up. This time, I took a slightly different approach and combined sweet and salty flavors into one DELICIOUS cookie! The idea came to me one day when I saw the new chocolate chips that my mom had purchased at the store. Nestle Toll House is now selling dark chocolate chips and I thought that dark chocolate would pair perfectly with peanut butter. But that just wasn't enough for me, so I decided to add some pretzels. The result was an absolutely delicious and perfect cookie that I have to share.



Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Chip Pretzel Cookies:

1 1/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter*
1 tsp. vanilla
2/3 cup dark chocolate chips**
1 cup crushed pretzels

Preheat the oven to 350.
In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda and salt, and set aside.
In a large bowl, cream together the softened butter and both sugars until well mixed. Stir in the peanut butter, egg, and vanilla, and blend together. Add the flour mixture and stir together all the ingredients. Fold in your chocolate chips and pretzels.
Drop rounded teaspoons of dough onto parchment lined cookie sheets. Pop the cookies in the oven and bake for about 8 – 10 minutes, depending on your cookie size and oven. As soon as the edges turn slightly brown I take the cookies out and allow them to cool for a few minutes on the cookie sheet.
*It is extremely important to use chunky peanut butter to add that extra crunch!
** It is also extremely important to use dark chocolate chips. This is what brings out the deliciousness in this sweet and salty combination.



Friday, October 7, 2011

Red Velvet Cookies

One of the best flavors in the world is red velvet. I think it's safe to say that most of you agree. Most of the time, I make either red velvet cake or cupcakes, but this time, I took a different route and made some red velvet cookies. This recipe sticks to the usual format of pairing red velvet with cream cheese frosting, however, these cookies are not frosted, but instead, swirled with cream cheese that is baked right inside! WOW! I had to try this! The cookies came out great, but a bit on the dry side. Overall, the recipe is a keeper, but I will work on making them a bit more moist. Anyway... enjoy!

Red Velvet Cookies

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon red food coloring
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup cocoa powder
5 tablespoons reduced fat cream cheese, softened

Preheat oven to 375ºF.
Cream butter and sugars together until fluffy.
Beat in egg and vanilla, then beat in food coloring.
Add flour, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder and mix until just combined.
Add cream cheese to dough and mix briefly until just swirled.
Scoop out by tablespoonfuls onto cookie sheet and bake 10-12 minutes. Cool on cookie sheets.