oatmeal cookie granola

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i cannot get enough of this oatmeal cookie granola. i first made it last year and have many dozens upon dozens of batches since then – i think i may actually have the recipe memorized already. haha.

granola makes the perfect gift. i made a whole bunch for christmas last year and packed them in cute mason jars. it’s great because you can easily make a double batch and it keeps well for a while, so the receiver doesn’t have to feel pressured to eat it right away with all of the other holiday sweets. everyone LOVED it and often request it again and again.

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chris and i also eat it all the time for for breakfast all the time. it’s delicious with some plain greek yogurt and sliced bananas. but chris doesn’t like coconut, so i just substitute a bit of extra oats and pecans (1/2 cup of each) whenever i make some for him.

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in fact, yesterday i made a batch for us to have for breakfast this week. i can’t wait! this oatmeal cookie granola is the perfect way to enjoy all of the flavors you love in an oatmeal cookie, but in a slightly healthier form.

first, combine the oats, pecans, flaxseed, coconut, cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar and salt in a medium/large bowl.

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cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes

cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes 12one of my coworkers is super talented and makes all kind of fun cupcakes.  she made these and posted a picture on instagram and i was immediately intrigued.  i knew i had to give them a try as soon as possible.

cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes 10so for birthday treats a few months back, i made these cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes.  i love how they incorporate and highlight one of my favorite childhood cereals.  plus cinnamon and sugar is such a classic combination – how could you go wrong.

cinnamon toast crunch cupcakes 13this is a cinnamon sugar swirl cupcake, topped with cinnamon toast crunch cream cheese frosting.  i mean, common!  for the cinnamon sugar swirl cupcake, i used the same cupcake base as my snickerdoodle cupcake.

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biscoff cupcakes

i have another cupcake recipe for you today.  i am super excited because i came up with it on my own.  okay maybe not completely on my own but i didn’t just copy a recipe.  go me!  i saw a few different versions of biscoff cupcakes on pinterest and google, but i think i came up with a winner!

biscoff biscuits are the cookies you get on delta flights.  they are absolutely addictive and delicious.  they have a nice cinnamony flavor and a lovely buttery, crispy texture.  yum!  what’s even better is that someone had the genius idea to crush up these biscoff cookies and turn them into butter.  i’ve used biscoff spread before in the chocolate snack cake with biscoff buttercream and it was super good, but i was excited to come up with a cupcake that highlighted the biscoff cookies in all its glory.

this cupcake is inspired by a miki’s kitchen favorite, oreo cupcakes and i just used biscoff cookies instead of oreos.  so there is 1/2 a cookie on the bottom of a white cupcake filled with biscoff cookie chunks.  it is then topped with a swirl of biscoff buttercream and decorated with another half of a biscoff cookie.

so much biscoff goodness is packed in this cupcake!  oh and a quick tip, i was able to find biscoff spread and cookies at costco.  it was so much cheaper getting a big ol’ jar of the spread and a 4 pack of the cookies, than buying smaller quantities at my local grocery store.  plus i can make even more biscoff goodies with the leftovers!

the cupcakes start with the biscoff cookie “crust.”  just place half a cookie on the bottom of each lined cupcake cup.

then mix up the white or vanilla cake mix as directed on the box.  add 20 biscoff cookies chopped or broken into small pieces.

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cinnamon candied pecans

you guys!  these cinnamon candied pecans are the bomb digity.  for real.  i can’t get enough of them.  they are crunchy and cinnamony and just delicious.  plus they are also super easy to make.  can’t get much better than that right?

i wanted to share the joy of these pecans with the world, so i made them as one of the components of my christmas gifts this year.  every year for christmas i just make different kinds of baked goods for my friends.  i’ve shared a few different recipes i’ve made in the past from soft gingersnap cookies with white chocolate chips and pistachio cranberry white chocolate lollipops to raspberry streusel bars and red velvet cake balls.  this year i made vanilla and coconut granola, raspberry streusel bars, vanilla bean sables, and garlic ranch pretzels, along with the cinnamon candied pecans (recipes coming soon!).

i packaged the pecans in these cute little mason jars and used red and white kitchen twine to tie on a lovely colorful tag.  i think they turned out quite nice.  hope everyone liked them!

start off by putting the egg whites, vanilla extract, and water in a large bowl.

then whisk it all together.

pour in the pecan halves and mix so that all of the pecans are completely covered with the egg white mixture.

in another bowl, combine the sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

pour the cinnamon sugar mixture over the pecans.

mix everything up…

and pour it on to a parchment paper lined baking sheet.  make sure all of the pecans are spread out into an even layer.

bake for 1 hours and 15 minutes at 250 degrees f, stirring every 15 minutes.

allow the candied pecans to cool completely and then package them up in air tight containers. nom nom nom.

please visit brown eyed baker for the recipe.  (i used a slightly different method to mix up the pecans – either way works fine.)

cinnamon chip waffles

remember those waffles i made a while ago?  no not the pumpkin ones, but the plain, regular ones?  well that’s actually not fair to call them plain because they were delicious.  but chris and i definitely prefer waffles that we can just pull out of the freezer, toast, and then eat right up.  no need to worry about a plate, fork, sticky syrup, etc.   just a napkin and you’re good to go.

so i decided to adapt the waffle recipe to make it a bit more exciting and tasty.   i love cinnamon chips and i remembered that they were great in scones and brownies so why not put them in waffles.  and you know what?  they were amazing in waffles.  yay, go me!  the bursts of cinnamon flavor was absolutely delicious.  i also added some cinnamon to bump up the cinnamon flavor and upped the sugar just a smidgen since we wouldn’t be eating these waffles with syrup.

this time i wrapped up the waffles individually thinking that it would make it easier on busy mornings to pull out 1 serving.  i wrapped 2 waffles at a time in plastic wrap.

ta da!  a big old stack of waffles ready for the freezer.

but i will say that i’ve made and froze more waffles since making these and i decided not to wrap them.  it just seemed like a waste of plastic wrap since it was easy enough to take out 2 at a time when storing the waffles in a large ziplock.  so i guess just figure out what works best for you and your family – either way you can’t go wrong because these waffles are the bombdigity.

the first step is to combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl – flour, cornstarch, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon.

then add the buttermilk, oil, egg, and vanilla.  whisk to combine making sure not to over mix.

time for the cinnamon chips!

chop them up just a little bit so they can be evenly disbursed through the waffles.

fold the cinnamon chip bits into the waffle batter and allow the batter to rest for 30 minutes.

bake the waffles according to your waffle maker’s instructions.  for mine, i need to pour 1 cup of batter on to the waffle iron,

and bake for 5 minutes.

then allow the waffles to cool on a wire rack.  do not cool your waffles on a plate or straight on the baking sheet or else they will get soggy and yucky.

i like to use kitchen shears to cut the waffles up.  it makes the process super quick and easy.

yay!  waffles galore!

oh i’ve also made chocolate chip waffles using this recipe.  just switch out the cinnamon chips for mini chocolate chips (no need to chop them up since they’re already small)  and omit the cinnamon.  delish!  i think they may be chris’ favorite.

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