Chocolate Peanut Biscotti

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Chocolate and Peanuts are always a popular combination. This recipe starts with a Devil’s Food cake mix for a quick and easy batch of biscotti. Perfect for dunking in a cup of coffee or cold glass of milk.

Chocolate Peanut Biscotti

1 box Devil’s Food cake mix
1 cup all purpose flour
1 stick butter, melted
2 large eggs
1 cup chopped peanuts
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
Egg wash made with 1 egg and 1 teaspoon water, beaten.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, in a large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients. Mix in melted butter and eggs until well combined and dough comes together. If dough seems too dry, add in a couple of tablespoons of water. Dough should pull away from sides of the bowl and be sticky. On low speed, add in peanuts and chocolate chips.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured board. Gently kneed a few times. Form into a ball and divide in half. Form two flat logs, about 3 inches wide,12 inches long and about an inch thick. Transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet, about 3 inches apart. Brush with egg wash.

Bake for 35 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes in pan. Carefully transfer to a cutting board and slice 1/2 to 3/4 inches thick. Return cut biscotti to pan, laying the biscotti, cut sides down, on the baking sheet and bake in the 350 degree oven for 10 minutes.  Turn off heat but leave pan in oven for 30 minutes to harden. Transfer biscotti to racks to cool and store in an airtight container.  Makes about 2 1/2 dozen depending upon thickness of the cookie.


Cranberry-Pistachio Biscotti

Cranberry-Pistachio Biscotti

This Italian twice-baked biscuit is the perfect accompaniment to your coffee, latte or tea.  Enjoy dipping this crunchy cookie in your favorite hot drink any time of day!

Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti

1 1/3 cups dried cranberries ( 1- 6 ounce bag)
2 ½ cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup shelled natural pistachio nuts
Egg wash made by beating together 1 egg and 1 tsp water

Put the cranberries in a bowl and cover with hot water. Let soak for 5 minutes.  Drain the cranberries well and pat them dry with paper towels.  In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, blend the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt until the mixture is combined well, add eggs and vanilla, beating until a dough is formed and stir in the cranberries and the pistachios. Note, if dough is too dry to stick together, add a couple of tablespoons of water.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, knead it several times and cut in half.  Working on a large buttered and floured baking sheet, with floured hands, form each piece of dough into a flattish log, 13 inches long and 3 inches wide, arrange the logs at least 3 inches apart on the sheet, and brush them with the egg wash. Bake the logs in the middle of a preheated 325 degree oven for 30 minutes and let them cool on the baking sheet on a rack for 10 minutes. Carefully transfer to a cutting board cut the logs crosswise on the diagonal into 3/4 inch thick slices. Arrange the biscotti, cut sides down, on the baking sheet and bake them in the 325 degree oven for 10 to 12 minutes until pale golden. Transfer the biscotti to racks to cool and store them in airtight containers.  Makes about 30.

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Fudgey Oatmeal Bars

Fudgey Oatmeal Bars

Two all time favorites rolled into one. Layers of oatmeal cookie dough filled with semi-sweet, chocolate fudge. Chewy, chocolatey, decadent and delicious!

Fudgey Oatmeal Bars

(adapted from a recipe by Averie Cooks)


1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), melted and cooled slightly
1 large egg
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups old-fashioned whole-rolled oats (not quick cook or instant)
1 cup all-purpose flour
pinch salt, optional and to taste
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, for batter
half of one 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
about 1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, for sprinkling


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, keeping a 2 inch over hang. Spray with Pam cooking spray and set aside.

  1. In a large bowl, mix brown sugar, egg and vanilla. Whisk in cooled, melted butter until smooth. Add in oats and flour, stirring just until combined, being careful not to over mix.
  2. Use a spatula to spread 3 quarters of the batter out into pan to form a crust. Reserve remaining batter.
  3. Add 1 cup chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk to a microwave safe bowl. Heat on high in 30 second intervals until chips are melted. Stir to combine. Quickly pour and smooth chocolate mixture over crust (chocolate sets up quickly).
  4. Spoon remaining batter over chocolate and smooth out with a spatula. For soft bars, bake for 25 minutes, just until top is set. Topping will be pale in color. Baking until golden will result in crunchy bars.
  5. Remove from oven and top with 1/3 cup chocolate chips. Cool in pan for at least an hour. Lift out using foil overhang. When completely cooled, slice and serve. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week.

Gingerbread Cookie Bars

Gingerbread Cookie Bars

No time for cutouts? Here’s a delicious alternative that will surely satisfy your gingerbread cravings.  And even better, it’s slathered with a dreamy, orange, cream cheese frosting. These bars are moist and chewy and quite tasty on their own, but that tangy topping really makes them rock.

Gingerbread Cookie Bars

adapted from

Cookie Bars

  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • ⅓ cup molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Orange Cream Cheese Frosting

    • 8 ounces cream cheese
    • ¼ cup butter, softened
    • 3 cups powdered sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1 teaspoon orange zest
    • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed orange juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Spray a 9×13″ baking pan with Pam cooking spray and set aside.
Using a stand or hand mixer, cream melted butter, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, and molasses.Add egg and beat until completely incorporated.

In a separate mixing bowl, add baking soda, flour, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg and salt and mix until well combined. Add flour mixture to butter mixture in 3 additions. Mix well after each addition, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Press dough evenly into the bottom of prepared pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Do not over bake.  Cool completely in pan.

Cream butter and cream cheese together in a large mixing bowl. Add powdered sugar, juice, zest  and vanilla and beat until smooth and creamy.

Spread the frosting evenly over the top of the cooled Gingerbread. Garnish as desired with colored sugar, cinnamon or nutmeg. I used Wilton Royal Icing decorations.

Cut into squares. Store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator. Remove from refrigerator 1/2 hour before serving.

Double Delicious Cookie Bars

Double Delicious Cookie Bars

Simple to make and simply irresistible.  Peanut butter and chocolate swimming in a sea of sweetened condensed creaminess atop a buttery graham cracker crust and capped with Reese’s Pieces for added crunch in another yummy version of Eagle Brand’s ‘magic cookie’ goodness.

Double Delicious Cookie Bars
adapted from Eagle Brand


1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 (14 oz.) can Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 cup (6 oz.) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup (6 oz.) Reese’s peanut butter chips
1 cup Reese’s Pieces


Preheat oven to 350°F (325°F for glass dish). Line a 13×9 inch baking pan with foil leaving an overhang on 2 sides. Lightly coat with a non stick cooking spray.

In a small mixing bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs with melted butter and mix well. Press crumb mixture firmly into bottom of pan.

Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over crumb mixture. Evenly spread peanut butter and semi-sweet chocolate chips and press into condensed milk.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and top with Reese’s Pieces. Cool.  Lift from pan using foil overhang. Cut into bars. Store in a single layer in an airtight container.


Magic Cookie Bars

Magic Cookie Bars

This old favorite has been around for ages and it never disappoints.  Another Eagle Brand original, so sweet and gooey. It just doesn’t get any easier than this.

Magic Cookie Bars

½ cup butter

1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs

1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk

1 6 oz package semi sweet chocolate morsels

1 3 ½ oz can flaked coconut (1 1/3 cups)

1 cup chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (325 for glass dish)

Note: Original recipe calls for a 13 x 9” baking pan, but I used an 11 x 7 nonstick rectangular tart pan with a removable bottom, which made removing and cutting a breeze. If using glass or a pan that is not non stick, you’ll want to spray with non-stick cooking spray. For easier removal, line the pan with foil or parchment, extending over the edges of the pan. Lift out of pan when cooled and cut.

Melt butter and mix with graham cracker crumbs in a medium size bowl.  Press into bottom of 13x 9 pan or into bottom an up sides if using a smaller pan. Pour condensed milk evenly over crumbs. Layer semi-sweet morsels, nuts and coconut; press down firmly.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool thoroughly before cutting. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days – if they last that long!

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Black Raspberry Chocolate Bars

Here’s a recipe that a former co-worker shared with me years ago.  This delicious cookie bar has a buttery shortbread crust layered with gooey sweet jam, chocolate chips and an almond crumb topping. Now who wouldn’t like that?

Black Raspberry and Chocolate Cookie Bars

Black Raspberry Chocolate Bars

For the Crust:

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup softened butter

For the Crumb Topping:

2/3 cup all purpose flour

1/2 cup sliced almonds

1/3 cup brown sugar

4 tablespoons softened butter

For the Filling:

1 cup seedless black raspberry jam

6 ounces milk chocolate or dark chocolate chips

Pre-heat oven to 375 Degrees

Line a 9 x 9 inch baking pan with foil

Combine crust ingredients in a medium bowl with a pastry blender or fork

Press mixture firmly into pan

Bake for 20 minutes- top should be slightly firm

Combine crumb topping ingredients until blended & set aside

Remove baked crust from oven

Top hot crust with jam spread within 1/4 inch from the edge

Sprinkle with chocolate chips, pressing them into the jam

Add crumb topping and chocolate chips, (press chips into crumbs and jam) top with sliced almonds and bake an additional 20 minutes until chocolate chips are softened.


Classic Chocolate Brownies

Classic Brownies

This brownie has it all; “cake like” on the outside, fudgy in the middle, fabulous by itself and perfect for a brownie sundae. Put away the box mix and give this a try. So simple to make and simply delicious.

Classic Chocolate Brownies
recipe from Ghirardelli

1/2 cup Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Baking Chips
4 ounces Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Baking Bar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/8 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and flour an 8-inch square baking pan.

Break up the semi sweet chocolate bar. Add chocolate and butter to a small saucepan over low heat. Melt slowly, stirring occasionally until smooth.
Remove pan from heat and set aside until cooled to room temperature.

In a mixing bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

Transfer melted chocolate and butter to another mixing bowl. Stir in the brown sugar and vanilla. Add eggs and mix well. Slowly fold in the flour mixture; mix until well blended. Mix in chocolate chips and pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool before cutting.

Makes 16 – 2 inch bars.

Mississippi Mud Cake

Mississippi Mud Cake 1

Rich, dark and decadent, this cake was inspired by the muddy waters of the Mississippi river. Super sweet and gooey, one bite will send shivers up and down any sweet tooth.

Mississippi Mud Cake (Southern Living Recipe)

1 cup coarsely chopped pecans, toasted
1 cup butter
1 (4-ounce) semi sweet chocolate baking bar, chopped
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 (10.5-ounce) bag miniature marshmallows

1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)

Melt butter and semisweet chocolate in a large microwave safe glass bowl in 30 second intervals until melted and smooth.  Whisk sugar and next 5 ingredients into chocolate mixture. Pour batter into a greased and floured 15×10 inch jellyroll pan. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes.  Prepare the frosting while the cake bakes. Remove from oven; sprinkle warm cake evenly with marshmallows.  Brenda’s Tip:  Leave 1/2 inch around the outside of cake so marshmallows do not stick to pan. Return to oven, and bake 8-10 minutes until marshmallows are puffed and golden.

For the frosting:

1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup butter
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 (16-ounce) package powdered sugar, sifted

Stir together first 3 ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat until butter is melted. Cook, stirring constantly 2 minutes or until slightly thickened; remove from heat. Beat in powdered sugar and vanilla  at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.   Drizzle Chocolate Frosting over warm cake. Brenda’s Tip : frosting will be thick, you will need to warm slightly in the microwave to thin to a pouring consistency. Top with pecans and chocolate chips.
Cool Completely.

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