Pumpkin (White) Chocolate Chip Cookies

I made these pumpkin cookies last week, since I was on a serious pumpkin kick, as you can tell from previous entries. These were a little too sweet with the white chocolate chips, in my opinion. So, next time, I’ll omit them and let the pumpkin shine!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Source: Allrecipes

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (I did 1/2 cup applesauce, of course!)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips (I used white chocolate chips)
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional and omitted)

Directions:

  1. Combine pumpkin, sugar, vegetable oil, and egg. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon, and salt. Dissolve the baking soda with the milk and stir in. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and mix well.
  2. Add vanilla, chocolate chips and nuts.
  3. Drop by spoonful on greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for approximately 10 minutes or until lightly brown and firm.

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Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Brownies

So, yesterday I realized that I wanted to bake with more pumpkin. The Fall is only here another month and a half, so I need to enjoy pumpkin while it feels right! I saw on Cara’s Cravings a picture of these beautiful swirly pumpkin cheesecake brownies and knew I just had to try it. Thanks for the recipe, Cara!

As far as for the diet, I didn’t really skinny it up that much (not that it really needed it as you will see in the POINTS* value), because it was election night and heck, I knew my family needed some fun food to enjoy the night with! I did make some changes on here, though.

Pumpkin Spice Cheescake Brownies
Adapted from: Cara’s Cravings

Ingredients:

Brownie Batter

  • 3/4 cup butter, melted (used 1/2 cup butter, 1/4 cup applesauce)
  • 1 cup sugar]
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
    (added 1/4 oz. semisweet baking chocolate)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Cheesecake Batter

  • 6 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp each ground ginger and ground cloves (I used 1/2 tsp nutmeg instead)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease an 8×8″ square metal baking pan.
  2. Beat together melted butter, sugar, and vanilla, then beat in eggs one at a time. Combine dry ingredients and then gradually stir into butter mixture with a wooden spoon. In separate bowl, beat together cheesecake batter ingredients.
  3. Spread about 2/3 of chocolate batter into prepared pan, and spoon cheesecake batter over. Dollop remaining brownie batter over cheesecake batter. Swirl the batters together by running a butter knife back and forth through the pan.
  4. Bake for 40 minutes, or until center is set. Cool completely on wire rack and chill before cutting and serving.

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Don’t they just look great? Ok, I won’t keep you waiting. Here’s the POINTS* value.

Serves: 20 (I made them small because they are very flavorful brownies and you don’t need much to give the sweet tooth what it wants!)
POINTS*: 4

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Oreo Truffles

I’ll admit it…I rushed myself into making oreo truffles, so they aren’t the prettiest. However, the taste makes up for it BIG TIME!

I found this idea originally in Beantown Baker’s blog, and I love that this is non-perishable!

I can’t wait to make these around the holidays with my new candy dipper set too…

All you need are:

1 package oreos
14 oz. condensed milk (you may need less than this…see directions)
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Almond bark or melting chocolate

First, crush the oreos in a ziploc bag or a food processor.

Then, add half of the condensed milk and mix together. Add a little more at a time, until the filling is mold-able by hand, but not too sticky.



Form into small balls and place in the freezer to set for about half an hour. In the meantime, prepare your melting chocolates according to the package instructions in the microwave or double boiler. Then, dip the balls in chocolate (I used toothpicks to hold the balls in the chocolate) and allow to cool on parchment or mini candy cups. :)


Ina’s (Amano) Brownies!

I have been trying to figure out what to do with my Amano chocolate that I graciously received from Blake Makes.


Yesterday, I found on Annie’s Eats blog a recipe from Ina Garten of Food Network. Her post was great, because she compared two brownie recipes (Ina’s and Cook Illustrated), and gave a synopsis. Ina’s brownies won in her book, and I can totally see why. These brownies were so rich and chocolatey and gooey (I underbake my brownies a little, so what?)…just amazing brownies and I’m sure the Amano chocolate really tipped it over the edge. It was a really smooth, rich flavor…I could only eat 1/2 a brownie, but my mom, dad and sister went to town. This morning, there were only 6 brownies left!! (So much for sharing with coworkers lol!)

I ended up halving the recipe, since I had 6 oz of Amano chocolate and used that instead of the semisweet chocolate chips. Since there is over 70% cacao in this chocolate, I knew this would be more of a dark chocolate brownie. I also, in halving everything, forgot to half the 3 oz. of unsweetened chocolate, but really no big deal in the end. Very very good stuff here folks!

Ina’s Outrageous Brownies

Ingredients:

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate chips (I used Amano chocolate here)
  • 3 oz. unsweetened chocolate (I used a substitute of 3 tbs cocoa powder + 1 tbs butter for every oz.)3 extra-large eggs
  • 1 ½ tbsp. instant coffee powder
  • 1 tbsp. real vanilla extract
  • 1 cup and 2 tbsp. sugar
  • ½ cup and 2 tbsp. flour, divided – ½ cup for batter and 2 tbsp. .in the chips
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cups morsels (milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate or butterscotch)
    (for this recipe, I mixed Ghiradelli and Andes mint chocolate baking chips AND I didn’t half this haha!)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Grease and flour a 9×13” metal pan. (I used 8×8 for the halved recipe)
  2. Melt together the butter, 1 ½ cups chocolate chips, and unsweetened chocolate on top of a double boiler. (I don’t have a double boiler, so I placed the Amano in the microwave in 30 second intervals until smooth. Then I combined all the butter and cocoa powder to make a sauce and folded the two together.) Cool slightly. Stir together the eggs, instant coffee, vanilla and sugar. Stir in the warm chocolate mixture and cool to room temperature.
  3. Stir together ½ cup of the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the chocolate chips with 2 tbsp. flour (I only needed 1 tbs of flour here) to coat. Then add to the chocolate batter. Pour into prepared pan.
  4. Bake for about 30 minutes, (mine took 20 minutes but I like mine a little underbaked) or until tester just comes out clean. Halfway through the baking, rap the pan against the oven shelf to allow air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. (Oops! Forgot to do this…no big deal here) Do not overbake! Cool thoroughly, refrigerate well (didn’t refrigerate…just dug in!) and cut into squares.



Dare I get the nutritional facts on this??

For 16 servings (with half the recipe), here are the facts…

Calories 275.8
Fat 14.8 g
Fiber 1.3 g

Points* 7

Faux Tiramisu Trifle..as sugar free as I could

Yesterday was mother’s day, and I got a call from mom to go to the grocery store to pick up a sugar free dessert for my grandma’s dinner that she was making. (Grandma is diabetic). I figured, I could make a great dessert for the family in a pinch that would go with the spaghetti dinner. It’s a faux tiramisu trifle! :)

Tiramisu Trifle

Ingredients:

  • 16 oz. sugar free cool whip (ideally but the store only had fat free)
  • 8 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese (it actually has 1 g less sugar than fat free!)
  • Sugar Free instant chocolate pudding mix (large box)
  • 2 tbsp instant coffee
  • 2 cups 1% milk
  • Sugar Free Angel Food cake
  • Grated chocolate (didn’t use for grandma’s sake but thought this would be great to add)

Directions:

Thaw cool whip and soften cream cheese. Fold 1/2 of cool whip into cream cheese and put aside. Prepare chocolate pudding by mixing 2 cups of milk with coffee, whisk, then add pudding mix and whisk for 2 minutes (this has less milk that required to keep it firmer). Cube angel food cake or cut into 3 rings. Layer trifle as such…cake, cream cheese cool whip, pudding…then when the last layer of cake is laid, add remaining cool whip on top. Add grated chocolate on top, and refridgerate until serving.

(Sorry, I’m not a writer, but this took 10 minutes to make and was WONDERFUL!)

I can’t calculate the recipe b/c Spark Recipes doesn’t have Sugar Free Angel Food Cake in it’s database :(.

TCHO Chocolate



Thanks to Blake Makes and TCHO for the sample of the decadent dark chocolate. It tasted wonderful, very rich and chocolatey! My family especially loved it. :)

You should definitely give TCHO a taste if you are a fan of really dark chocolate!

Blake Makes! PBDDL!

The wonderfulness that is peanut butter dulce de leche (otherwise known as PBDDL) came in earlier this week, and let me tell you how excited I was! How do you get it? Go to Blake’s website and sign up to be in Soopz! He is a foodie like many of the bloggers that are Soopz members, and he has a new product, which is PBDDL. In order to get the word out, he has giveaways of his products, and now I’m pretty sure many people are all anxiously awaiting it’s selling debut! (mmm)


Another bonus? He is a fellow NOLA-ian. Represent f’real!

With my PBDDL, I made cupcakes! Weight Watchers friendly cupcakes! Now these were flimsy, but there was nothing bad to say about the richness and taste of it…just take a spoon and go crazy! Mmm…

Recipe

10 oz. diet coke
1 box Chocolate cake mix
1 egg white

Bake according to the box recipe. However, halfway in the middle of the baking time, I placed mini Reese’s cups inside, and then let it bake the rest of the time.

The real fun is here…thanks to Allrecipes!

I 1/4ed the recipe though since I only had 1/4 cup of peanut butter to work with :). Delicious though!!

INGREDIENTS

* 1/8 cup butter, softened
* 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter (used PBDDL)
* 3/4 tablespoons milk, or as needed
* 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

DIRECTIONS

1. Place the butter and peanut butter into a medium bowl, and beat with an electric mixer. Gradually mix in the sugar, and when it starts to get thick, incorporate milk one tablespoon at a time until all of the sugar is mixed in and the frosting is thick and spreadable. Beat for at least 3 minutes for it to get good and fluffy.



Chewy Thin Mints

These came out really rich but good. Remind me SO much of the taste of girl scout cookies but really chewy. I left about 8 at home with the fam and brought the rest to work. They were gone in minutes!

Chewy Thin Mints
Source: Cooking Light

Ingredients

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons butter, softened
3 tablespoons applesauce
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
Cooking spray

Preparation
Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, cocoa, and baking soda in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk.

Combine the brown sugar and next 5 ingredients (brown sugar through peppermint extract) in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed for 2 minutes. Beat in the egg white. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed until well-blended.

Coat your hands lightly with cooking spray. Shape the dough into a 6-inch log. Wrap log in plastic wrap; freeze 1 hour or until firm. ** For me, firm was after 24 hours, and it wasn’t really firm but it was enough to manage with! **

Preheat oven to 350°.

Cut the log into 24 (1/4-inch) slices, and place 1 inch apart on baking sheets lightly coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes. Remove from pans; cool on wire racks.

** I then melted white chocolate and drizzled that on top of the cookies with sprinkles. Added food coloring for a fun look :) **

Would you like a bite?

Makes 2 dozen cookies (serving size: 1 cookie)

Nutritional Information

CALORIES 76(22% from fat); FAT 1.8g (sat 1.1g,mono 0.5g,poly 0.1g); PROTEIN 1.2g; CHOLESTEROL 4mg; CALCIUM 8mg; SODIUM 33mg; FIBER 0.2g; IRON 0.7mg; CARBOHYDRATE 13.7g

I believe the Reese’s factory exploded in my 8×8 pan

This is another recipe from bakingblonde’s blog. It’s sooo amazing! The kitchen smells heavenly and these are my first brownies I’ve ever made from scratch. They came out super moist too!! These are not for the dieters…oh well! I’m bringing half to work tomorrow so there isn’t that much to tempt me!

Double Peanut Butter Cheesecake Swirled Brownies

3/4 cup butter, very soft (not melted but softer than room temp)
1 cup sugar (I used 1/2 c of splenda and 1/2 c of sugar)
1 TBS vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 oz. unsweetened baking chocolate, melted (I used another oz of semi sweet instead because I love sweeter chocolate)
1 oz. semi-sweet baking chocolate, melted
1/2 cup all purpose flour (I used whole wheat flour)
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Peanut Butter Cheesecake Swirl
4 oz cream cheese, softened (I used 1/3 less fat)
1/2 cups creamy PB
1/3 cup sugar (I used splenda here)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

5-6 Reese’s peanut butter cups (regular size) cut into 6-8 pieces each
IMPORTANT: Do NOT omit the Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. They take these brownies over the top and add the “Double” Peanut Butter taste the title tepts tastebuds with

Preheat oven to 350. Line an 8×8″ square pan with foil and lightly coat with PAM cooking spray.

In a microwave safe bowl melt the two baking chocolate squares in 30 second intervals stirring after each interval until smooth and melted after stirring. Do not scortch! Remove from microwave and allow to come to room temperature.

In a large mixing bowl, Beat together butter and sugar until combined. Beat in eggs one at a time until blended. Add vanilla and melted chocolate. Mix to combine. Combine dry ingredients in medium bowl and wisk together. Gradually stir dry ingredients into butter mixture. Do not overmix.

In separate mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese, peanut butter sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add egg and beat until just combined.

Spread about 2/3 of chocolate brownie batter into prepared pan. Evenly drop 1/2 of cheesecake batter in dollups over brownie batter. Run a knife through both mixtures to slightly swirl.

Dollop remaining brownie batter and cheesecake batter over swirled mixture. Run knife through the brownie and cheesecake dollops (not all the way through the already swirled layer) to create a swirled pattern.
Bake for 35- 40 minutes**, or until center is set and a toothpick inserted in the center has a few crumbs stuck to it. Do not over bake or they will harden, if under baked they will be too gooey. Every oven is different so watch and check these after about 30 minutes of baking to ensure they are done.

**After about 30 minutes of baking (with about 5-7 minutes of baking time left, you just need to eyeball it) gently place cut up Reese’s cups over top of almost fully baked brownies. Finish baking until a toothpick inserted in the center has a few crumbs stuck to it. The Reese’s PB cups will melt but hold their shape slightly. Cool completely on wire rack before cutting and serving.


Here is the batter..

The finished product…

Want a bite? mmm…

Nutritional Info: (if I dare)

If you go by the regular recipe, it’s about 400 cals/brownie for 12 brownies. However, I cut them into 16 and my substitutions make them:

Calories 244.1
Total Fat 17.8 g
Total Carbohydrate 19.4 g
Dietary Fiber 2.2 g
Sugars 11.4 g
Protein 5.7 g

Weight Watchers Points: 6 (a splurge well worth it!!)