Category Archives: Sweets

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Icing

It is a Monday that doesn’t feel like Monday!
Halleluiah!

Gluten Free Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

I have spent the entire weekend covered in paint. When I cracked open the first can of paint I was 100% sure I was going to regret my decision to spend ALL WEEKEND painting by myself. Surprisingly enough, I have loved it. Mr. Maebell has been away on a hunting trip and he took the dogs with him so the house has been quite in the most fantastic way. Just me, a paint brush, and netflix.

Gluten Free Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

We I have converted one of the spare rooms into an office. You heard me right, an office! Maebells is legit now! :) It is getting a nice coat of mossy/light green paint and a gallery wall so I can finally hang some wedding pictures. It is so refreshing to change things up. While I was out it I repainted a bathroom too!

Gluten Free Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

If there is one thing I am sure of it is that any type of home improvement should be rewarded. Which is exactly why I made these Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Icing. They seemed like just the way to treat myself after a weekend of spackle, sand paper, and paint.

Gluten Free Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

So just in case your looking for a way to reward your self this holiday weekend whip up a batch of these little guys! You won’t be sorry!

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Icing
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • For the cupcakes:
  • 1½ cups gluten free bisquick
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons dark chocolate cocoa powder
  • ½ cup cold coffee
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅓ cup canola or coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon red food coloring
  • For the icing:
  • 8 ounces of cream cheese (I used reduced fat)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 vanilla bean*
  • *If you don't have vanilla bean just use 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract total
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cocoa powder in a large mixing bowl until well combined.
  3. Add the coffee, milk, beaten eggs, oil and food coloring. Stir until mixture is completely incorporated and smooth.
  4. Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray, and carefully scoop the cupcake batter into the molds. (I used an ice cream scoop, it helps to give them nice round tops)
  5. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until set and a tooth pick comes out clean.
  6. Remove cupcakes from tin and let them cool on a wire rack.
  7. While cupcakes are cooling combine the cream cheese and butter in a large mixing bowl. This is easiest if you use a stand or hand mixer. Beat the cream cheese and butter for 30-45 seconds or until they are fluffy. Add the sugar and vanilla extract and continue to beat the mixture until all the sugar is incorporated and the mixture begins to thicken.
  8. Cut open the vanilla bean and scrape or squeeze out the inside seeds. Beat the frosting about 30 more seconds so the vanilla is distributed evenly.
  9. Store icing in the fridge until the cupcakes are completely cool.
  10. Frost cupcakes and enjoy.

 

Pina Colada Soft Serve

It is hot.
Like hot hot hot.

Piña Colada Soft Serve...no ice cream maker needed! Just 30 seconds and five simple ingredients!

Sunday afternoon I went to run a few errands and ended up cutting the day short because it was totally miserable outside. Make up was melting right off my face, and my car felt like it was a million degrees every time I turned it on. No thank you. I would rather do all my shopping online than deal with a heat index of 104!
I walked right into the house ready to make a smoothie but ended up making this Pina Colada Soft Serve by mistake.
Talk about a happy accident.

Piña Colada Soft Serve...no ice cream maker needed! Just 30 seconds and five simple ingredients!

This has the perfect soft serve consistency and it was loaded with pineapple and coconut flavor. Just the refreshing mid afternoon pick me up I needed! I topped the soft serve with toasted coconut which added a whole lot of flavor and a little bit of crunch.

Piña Colada Soft Serve...no ice cream maker needed! Just 30 seconds and five simple ingredients!

This makes the perfect snack size for two people or one super hungry person who needs to cool off! (um, yeah I ate both bowls)

What are you waiting for? You’re only five ingredients and 30 seconds away from tropical bliss!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Pina Colada Soft Serve
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup frozen pineapple
  • ½ cup frozen cool whip (I used fat free)
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons coconut
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • ½ teaspoon coconut extract (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in blender and blend for 20-30 seconds. You may enjoy it immediately or put it back in freezer to firm up to a harder ice cream consistency.
  2. If you wish to add toasted coconut just set your broiler to low and sprinkle about ⅛-1/4 cup of shredded coconut on a baking sheet. Let it set under the broiler for 30 seconds-1 minute or until lightly toasted. Watch closely! Let it cool before adding to soft serve

 

 

 

Black and Blue Crisp with Oatmeal Pecan Topping

Black and Blueberry Crisp with Oatmeal Pecan Topping

As you can tell by my teeny tiny dessert section on this blog, we don’t do a lot of desserts around here. Don’t get me wrong, we eat plenty of sweets, like granola bars, sweet breads, or fancy granolas. We just don’t do very many traditional desserts. The main reason is lack of self control. There are only two of us and we know no limits. So, in order for my skinny jeans to continue to fit, we just forgo them.

Black and Blueberry Crisp with Oatmeal Pecan Topping

Or at least we did…until these blackberries kept staring at me. They were just begging to be made into a fancy, warm, ooey, gooey, sweet, sticky fruit crisp with a perfect crunchy topping. So, one Sunday afternoon I decided to make it happen. The result? A-mazing. Seriously. So good. So good, in fact, that I ate it…ate almost all of it.

Oops.

Black and Blueberry Crisp with Oatmeal Pecan Topping

Don’t judge.

But once I put the ice cream on it for the photos what was I supposed to do?! It would be irresponsible to let food go to waste. Right?

See, I told you, total lack of self control.

There was a very small portion left for Mr. Maebell when he got home. He inhaled  it and requested that I please make more.

No problem. No problem at all!

Black and Blueberry Crisp with Oatmeal Pecan Topping

5.0 from 3 reviews
Black and Blueberry Crisp with Oatmeal Pecan Topping
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • For the Filling
  • 2 cups fresh blackberries
  • 1½ cups fresh blueberries
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • For the Topping
  • ½ cup old fashioned oats (I used gluten free oats)
  • ¼ cup flour (I used gluten free flour)
  • ¼ cup chopped pecans
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. In a mixing bowl combine the berries, sugar, and corn starch until berries are completely covered.
  3. Grab a large cast iron skillet or deep dish pie pan and spray with cooking oil.
  4. Pour berries into pan.
  5. Wipe your mixing bowl clean and combine the oats, flour, pecans and brown sugar well. Then cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or use your hands to blend in the butter. It should be combined well and the mixture will be crumbly.
  6. Pour the oatmeal topping over your berries, making sure to distribute it evenly.
  7. Bake 20 minutes and serve warm with ice cream.

 

Cake Batter Bars

Cake Batter Bars, a super simple, sweet, sticky treat! And it happens to be gluten free!

I am not spontaneous. Like, not at all…well, maybe when it comes to home improvement projects. But other than that, I am definitely not spontaneous. A couple weeks ago, Mr. Maebell had the idea to go for some frozen yogurt at about 9pm. When he told me I just looked at him. I actually thought it was a joke. I am such an old person. I am in bed by like 9:30 every single night. I have been like this my whole life. As a kid, a teen, and as an adult. I am the only kid I know that never had a specified curfew. My parents never had to wonder when I would be home because my bedtime was pretty much set in stone.

I like to sleep! What can I say?!

Cake Batter Bars, a super simple, sweet, sticky treat! And it happens to be gluten free!

We did get froyo that night. I changed out of my pajamas, we loaded the dogs in the car, and drove across town to get the frozen yogurt. So we walk in and there are tons of flavors and these massive dispensers of topping choices and a big bar of fresh fruit, chocolate, nuts, syrup and whipped cream.

I am standing there trying to decide what I want and he grabs a cup, walks right up to the vanilla dispenser and fills his cup all the way up. Then he makes a B line for the register and then turns to look for me.

Vanilla? Are you freaking kidding me?! You drag me out of the house at night, make me change clothes, and drive all the way across town for a cup of vanilla?!?!

Cake Batter Bars, a super simple, sweet, sticky treat! And it happens to be gluten free!

I couldn’t believe it. Now, I know some of the foods were off limits because they weren’t gluten free, but still he had a TON of choices. I asked him why he didn’t put anything on it and he said, “Why would I?”

Good Lord.

I choose mine (coffee and dark chocolate, is anyone surmised by that?) grabbed a couple toppings and we left. My sad little cup of chocolate coffee and his uninspired cup of vanilla. But after we left all I could think about was the cake batter flavor that I had passed up. Days passed and I couldn’t get it out of my head. Cake batter, cake batter, cake batter…it is all I wanted.

Cake Batter Bars, a super simple, sweet, sticky treat! And it happens to be gluten free!

Luckily, the Vanilla Chex cereal already tastes similar to cake batter, so I just kind of ran with it. The result are these super sweet, sticky, fantastic cereal bars that taste just like cake batter! And a big bonus, no weird ingredients! They include cereal, butter, marshmallows, vanilla, and of course, sprinkles.

Cake Batter Bars, only five simple ingredients!

So,  just in case all of this cake batter talk has you craving it, too. Know you’re only five ingredients away from these sweet treats!

Cake Batter Bars, only 5 ingredients and gluten free!

 

Cake Batter Bars
Recipe type: Sweets
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8+
 
Ingredients
  • 5 cups Vanilla Chex
  • 5 cups of marshmallows
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1-2 teaspoons sprinkles
Instructions
  1. Heat a medium size sauce pan to medium low heat, add butter and let it slowly melt. When butter is mostly melted add in the marshmallows and stir them regularly.
  2. When the butter and marshmallows are totally melted add the vanilla extract.
  3. Grab a 9x13 pan (for thin bars, if you want thick bars use an 8x8 pan) and line with wax paper, lightly spray with cooking oil and set aside.
  4. Add the cereal to the marshmallow mixture, stir well, and spread into the pan then top with sprinkles.
  5. Place in the fridge and let the bars firm up.
  6. When you are ready to cut turn them out onto a cutting board, removing the wax paper and cut into squares.
  7. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

 

Dark Chocolate Coconut Mocha Donuts

This is what a happy morning looks like in my house.

Baked Coconut Mocha Donuts  with Dark Chocolate Coconut Glaze
Last weekend I woke up to a quiet house and a clear schedule. I poured myself a cup of coffee and got to work.
I love baking. I know some people don’t enjoy the measuring or the mess that comes with proper baking, especially proper gluten free baking. But I adore it, something about the pouring, measuring, and mixing is totally therapeutic to me.

Baked Coconut Mocha Donuts  with Dark Chocolate Coconut Glaze

This particular morning I was ready to try my hand at donuts. I had written out a couple different flavor combinations and had finally decided on “Cherry Cheesecake.” My thought was to bake fresh cherries into the donuts, do a cream cheese glaze and drizzle crushed (gluten free) graham crackers over the top. Sounds fantastic right? Well I opened up the fridge to start getting out ingredients and a bag of unopened coconut fell out of the fridge. That was all it took. A quick glance of coconut and the smell of coffee already lingering around my kitchen and just like that “poof!” I didn’t want cherry donuts. I wanted Coconut Mocha Donuts. I didn’t just want them. I HAD to have them.

Baked Coconut Mocha Donuts  with Dark Chocolate Coconut Glaze

I scrapped my plans, turned to a different page in my notebook and started scribbling. Pretty soon cocoa powder was flying around the kitchen and through the cloud of flour and sugar in the kitchen these little beauties started to form. The donuts are filled with rich dark chocolate cocoa powder and espresso powder to make perfect, soft donuts. They are then dunked in a dark chocolate glaze laced with coconut extract and then dunked in toasted coconut.

Baked Coconut Mocha Donuts  with Dark Chocolate Coconut Glaze

Heaven folks. This is heaven.

Dark Chocolate Coconut Mocha Donuts

To be totally honest with you, I do not have a big sweet tooth in the mornings. I will almost always pick savory over sweet when it comes to breakfast, however these little beauties have totally changed me.

Bring on the chocolate!

Dark Chocolate Coconut Mocha Donuts

5.0 from 2 reviews
Coconut Mocha Donuts
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 9
 
Ingredients
  • Donut Ingredients
  • 1 cup AP Flour or Bisquick (I used GF Bisquick)
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate cocoa powder (I used Hershey's Special Dark)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee powder (I used one to go packet)
  • 2 tablespoons hot water
  • Glaze Ingredients
  • 1¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons dark chocolate cocoa powder
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons coconut extract
  • ½ cup coconut for toasting
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and sugar until thoroughly combined.
  3. Add milk, sour cream, and beaten egg.
  4. In a small bowl or cup combine the hot water with the instant coffee powder until dissolved. Pour coffee into donut batter and mix well.
  5. Spray donut pan with cooking oil and spoon batter into donut molds.
  6. Bake donuts 12 minutes, carefully remove from pan and let cool on a wire rack.
  7. While donuts are cooling combine the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, milk, and coconut extract until a thick glaze forms.
  8. Turn the broiler on your oven to low. Pour shredded coconut into a single layer on a baking sheet. Toast coconut until lightly brown, this will take about one minute. Watch closely so it does not burn.
  9. Dunk cooled donuts in chocolate glaze and then dip in toasted coconut.
  10. *Note: There is enough glaze to double dunk your donuts or to completely coat with glaze. Donuts will need to be stored in the fridge.

For more Coconut Mocha creations try my Blended Coconut Mocha and my Coconut Mocha Snack Mix!

Adapted from Joy the Baker

Vanilla Bean Frappuccino

A couple weekends ago I was at Starbucks with a friend. I ordered my usual caffeine filled macchiato and she ordered a Vanilla Bean Frappuccino. I can honestly say it had never crossed my mind to order something at Starbucks that didn’t have any coffee! But I was intrigued, it looked delicious! I tasted it and was totally in love. It is a super fantastic vanilla loaded ice cold drink. I immediately knew I had to recreate it.

Skinny Vanilla Bean Frappuccino

I did some quick googling and figured out most homemade versions of the Vanilla Bean Frappuccino include loads of ice cream. I really wanted to keep this drink on the lighter side of things so I tried a couple different mixtures of milk/yogurt/honey/vanilla and none of it was quite right. Ultimately, I decided the key to this drink is frozen fat free cool whip! Weird, I know. But it totally works. It mimics ice cream in that it adds a great creamy texture but without the calories.

This version is super simple and can be whipped up in a matter of minutes! The only thing even slightly tricky is the vanilla bean. If you haven’t ever used them before, just slice it lengthwise and you will see all of these little black “seeds” (I know they aren’t really seeds, but I don’t know what else to call them) just grab a small spoon and scoop them right into your blender.

And just in case you end up as addicted to this drink as I am and don’t want to spend all your money on vanilla beans look in the ethnic food section at your grocery instead of the baking aisle. They are likely much cheaper! And If you happen to have a World Market near you, they are even cheaper!

Skinny Vanilla Bean Frappuccino

What are you waiting for? Drink up my friends!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Vanilla Bean Frappuccino
Recipe type: Drinks
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2+
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups ice
  • 1½ cup frozen fat free cool whip
  • 1 vanilla bean split lengthwise and inside scooped out
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons honey
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a bender and blend for one minute or until ice is totally crushed.
  2. This makes 2 large cups or 4 small cups

 

Fresh Strawberry and Vanilla Pudding Pops

It is hot.

Fresh Strawberry and Vanilla Pudding Pops

Like full on, you-will-melt-if-you-walk-outside. And it is only going to get hotter.

You know how some people love summer and frolic in the water and run around in bathing suits drinking fruity drinks? Yeah that isn’t me. The only good thing about summer is that school was out. Since I am no longer in school I really don’t care for this season. Terrible, right? I know. Give me fall with leggings, boots, and scarves and I am a happy girl.

I do try to like summer. There are certain things I do enjoy. I really like that it stays daylight until almost 8 at night. I like sun dresses and ponytails. I love the fresh produce this time of year, and I like Popsicles.

Fresh Strawberry and Vanilla Pudding Pops

So in an effort to embrace summer I have these Fresh Strawberry and Vanilla Pudding Pops for you. You won’t believe how simple this is, just fresh strawberries, milk, and a couple tablespoons of instant pudding mix. Toss it all in the blender, give it a whirl and then freeze. Not only are these easy, but they are also a great light summer snack. So just in case you are one of the ones that likes sun, summer, and bathing suits, this won’t wreck your bikini bod! :)

Fresh Strawberry and Vanilla Pudding Pops

And just in case you are looking for more “summer friendly fare” here is a list of my favorite things to make that don’t require turning on your oven!


Fresh Strawberry and Vanilla Pudding Pops
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups strawberries
  • 1½ cups milk
  • 3 tablespoons dry vanilla instant pudding mix
Instructions
  1. Remove stems from berries and place all ingredients in a blender and blend 30 seconds to one minute or until berries are crushed and completely combined.
  2. Pour mixture into molds and freeze 24 hours.
  3. Run the molds under warm water for 15 seconds to make them easier to remove.
  4. Enjoy!