Tag Archives: lemon

Fresh Squeezed Lemonade

This fresh squeezed lemonade recipe is a breeze to make, and a perfect refresher for warm afternoons!

old-fashioned-lemonade Summer is definitely here, and it is HOT.

Over the 4th of July weekend, our family made a little trip to Idaho, to visit a family friend who has a really nice little farm with lots of old tractors.  It was a really lovely weekend, though it was really, really hot.

We went swimming in the creek to cool off, which actually worked really well. It was an idyllic setting, with a huge willow tree, weathered wooden bench, and a rope swing.

I felt like we were in the 1950’s. The only thing that was missing was the old-fashioned lemonade.


I always thought that real lemonade would be so hard to make. I mean, squeezing lemons? Who does that? For years, I opted for the frozen concentrate, believing it the easier choice.

Little did I know, squeezing lemons is not any harder than breaking up that dang frozen concentrate. In fact, it’s probably easier. And it tastes far better, so these days, the choice is an easy one.

Fresh stuff, all the way, for this family!


This recipe is easy to customize, too. Add some fresh berries, if you like, or a sprig of mint. Any way you make it, this lemonade is the perfect addition to any warm summer day.


Fresh Squeezed Lemonade
Fresh-squeezed, old-fashioned lemonade.
Recipe type: Beverages
Serves: 6 cups
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 cup fresh lemon juice (about 6 lemons)
  1. In a saucepan, combine 1 cup water with 1 cup sugar to make simple syrup. Bring to a boil, and boil about 5 minutes. Set aside and let cool. (Refrigerate to chill completely)
  2. Squeeze juice from lemons to get one cup. Chill lemon juice.
  3. Once simple syrup and lemon juice are chilled, pour both into a pitcher with 4 cups very cold water. Stir to combine.
  4. Serve over ice.

Easy Pineapple Cheesecake Recipe

This easy pineapple cheesecake recipe is fast to put together and delicious! You’ll love how tasty this tropical pineapple cheesecake recipe is.

pineapple-cheesecakeI feel it’s time I came clean about something. Something already obvious, but previously unstated. It’s time I stated it loud and clear.

There is a big push out there in the food world for more foods that are fresh, homemade, organic, etc. Don’t get me wrong, I love fresh, organic, homemade foods, but there are plenty of people who either can’t afford it, don’t have access to it, or just plain don’t want to eat that way.

There is a trend toward food that are gourmet, with exotic produce and fascinating flavor combinations. Once again, I adore eating this way, but do I want to cook this way? Not so much. I suspect there are plenty of you who agree with me.

The reality is that there are a lot of working moms out there. Busy moms who are doing all they can to hold it together, and who desperately want to care for their families with fun desserts, homemade cookies for lunch boxes, and weekend snacks. This blog is literally created for those people. The people who want cookies and want them quick and easy. The people who don’t have the patience to make something complicated that requires 25 ingredients and 12 specialty tools they don’t own. The people who don’t have time to bake a cheesecake for 2 hours.

I got your back, busy moms. We’re in this together.


This easy pineapple cheesecake is just one example of what I’m talking about. I bought a prepared graham cracker crust. Can I make my own crust? Sure. Do I want to? Not remotely. Store bought crusts are cheap, tend to be good quality, and will save you at least 20 minutes. Probably more, if you’re like me.

I used frozen whipped topping (a.k.a. Cool Whip) too. Do I prefer to eat real whipped cream? Yes I do. I really really really do. But a carton of the frozen stuff will save me a good 10 minutes of whipping.

I added some lemon jello mix. I was hoping the gelatin would give this pineapple cheesecake recipe at little substance, and help it hold it’s shape.  Also, the added flavor complements the pineapple, and gives color without my having to add food coloring.

The pineapple too, was designed to make this recipe an easy one. Fresh pineapple is delicious and I love it. It’s also a royal pain in the neck to slice, and you certainly cannot purchase just half of a fresh pineapple, and fresh pineapple just doesn’t keep.  I used the canned stuff. You can get it in bulk during the case lot sales at the grocery store, keep it on your shelf, and that way you can still eat well during the weeks that are a little lean.

pineapple-cheesecake-recipe easy-pineapple-cheesecake

I should have timed myself making this easy cheesecake. I didn’t, partly because I was stopping to take photos of the process, but mostly because I flat out forgot about it.

Welcome to my life.

Here was my process: The night before, I took the whipped topping out of the freezer and put it in the fridge. I took the cream cheese out of the fridge and put it on the counter. The next morning, I got out the hand beaters and a large bowl, dropped the pineapple in a sieve to drain it, and started mixing. (And truthfully? I only used the sieve to make it look super cute in photos. I usually drain fruit by opening the lid, then pressing the lid into the can really hard, while letting juice pour out into the sink.) I plopped the whole mixture in the crust, covered it with the plastic cover that comes with the crust, and put in the fridge.

Clean up included 1 bowl, 1 large spoon, beaters, and measuring cup. And a sieve and small bowl, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Easy. Peasy.


I let mine chill for a couple hours. Could you eat it right away if you were in a hurry?  Yeah, you could.

Could you make individual servings to help them chill faster? Absolutely. Skip the prepared crust, and drop some graham cracker crumbs in the bottom of each of 6 serving dishes, then add a big old spoonful of the cheesecake to each dish.  For this, I would buy extra whipped topping, so that you can also top each one with a spoonful of it. You can even garnish with extra crumbs, if you want. Or a cherry. Or my favorite garnish… nothing.

I’m so boring.

But guess what?  With just 6 ingredients, and less than 10 minutes, you have a dessert that you can give your family after dinner. It might buy you 5 more minutes of face time with your kids. It might be a way to turn a boring night into something a little more special or fun. It might be a good bribe to get the dishes done. It might even be a midnight treat for after the kids are in bed.

There are a thousand ways for easy food to suit your life. I would much rather spend my time talking with my family rather than cooking for them, so unless your family is in the kitchen cooking with you, don’t feel bad about making that time as quick and efficient as possible.

So yes, I’m going to use cake mixes. And pudding mixes. And Cool Whip. I’m going to choose a no-bake cheesecake over a baked one. I’m going to choose a drop cookie over a cut-out. And I’m going to share all of them with you.


If you’re agreeing with me, you’re in the right place.  There are lots of great easy dessert recipes here already. My recipe index sections are at the top of the page if you want to start sifting through them now. If you want to get more easy dessert and snack recipes like this in your inbox, you can sign up for this email list, and each and every new recipe will show up in your inbox as they are published.  If that’s too much for you, this email list is where I share a very short list of 2-3 good recipes, from me and other awesome sources, every Monday.  I mean, most Mondays. The Mondays I don’t forget.  Because that happens.

Leave me a comment below with your thoughts, and then go eat some cheesecake!

pineapple-cheesecake (12 of 6)
4.67 from 3 votes

Easy No-Bake Cheesecake

An easy no-bake cheesecake with pineapple in a graham cracker crust.

Servings 6 slices
Author Jen @ Jen's Favorite Cookies


  • 8 ounces cream cheese *(see notes)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 8 ounces frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 1 small (3-ounce) box lemon flavored gelatin mix (unprepared)
  • 2 cans (8 ounces each) crushed pineapple, well drained
  • 1 prepared 9-inch graham cracker crust


  1. In a mixing bowl, whip cream cheese, sugar, and whipped topping until creamy and smooth.

  2. Add in dry jello and mix well. Add in drained pineapple and mix well.

  3. Pour mixture into graham cracker crust. Chill for 2 hours or more before serving. Cut into 6 slices.

Recipe Notes

*Only use regular full-fat cream cheese in a brick. Low fat, fat free, or whipped cream cheese products have a higher water content which may have a drastic effect on this recipe.


Lemon Thumbprints

These chewy lemon cookies are packed with flavor!  Try this recipe for lemon cookies when you want something summery with lots of lemon flavor.

chewy-lemon-cookiesMy oldest niece just turned 18.  Which wouldn’t be so bad, except that it means my oldest son is only months behind her.

I’m not freaking out. I’m not freaking out. I’m not freaking out.  If I keep saying it, it’s bound to be true, right?

It’s weird for me to think that in just a few more months, she will be off on her own, attending the same junior college I attended at her age, having the same kinds of good times, learning the same kinds of life lessons, and perhaps even making fun of the same professors.  I’m seriously not ready for this time of my life.

Not that my life cares whether I am ready or not.

(See related post: Lemon Sugar Cookies)


Add this to your Cookie Recipes board on Pinterest!

Miss Rags requested something fruity for her birthday cookie.  Actually, she said, “I don’t know,” and I pressed her and pressed her until she mentioned fruit.  That’s the kind of aunt I am.

Then I went through a nightmare of finding a cookie that I could give her without hanging my head in shame.  I had cookie failure after cookie failure until the magical day when I met my first batch of lemon curd.  This lemon curd, to be exact.

I don’t know why I’ve never made it before.  I guess I just didn’t grow up eating it, and I wasn’t really sure what to do with it.  But now that I have a jar of it in my fridge, I want to make toast, or homemade English Muffins, just to have something to smear with lemon curd.


For the cookie part of this cookie, I used this Lemon Sugar Cookie recipe, and punched it up with some lemon zest.  If you prefer a lighter flavor, you can certainly leave the zest out, and just use the juice.

Maybe these cookies will introduce Miss Rags to the wonders of lemon curd, and she and her roommates can have a wonderful, lemony freshman year!


Want more?  Try these lemon cookies!

strawberry lemonadericotta cookiesbuttery shortbread recipe


Lemon Thumbprints
Cook time
Total time
A lemon cookie with lemon curd filling.
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 3 dozen
  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 lemon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 cups flour
  • lemon curd *(see notes)
  1. Cream butter and sugar. Add egg and mix well.
  2. Add the zest and juice of one lemon. (About 3 tablespoons of juice) Mix well.
  3. Add salt, baking powder, and flour, and mix just until combined.
  4. Place small spoonfuls of dough on a baking sheet, and form a well in the center of each. Fill each well with lemon curd.
  5. Bake at 325F for 11-14 minutes. Let sit on the baking sheet for 1-2 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
I used THIS RECIPE to make a batch of lemon curd ahead of time. I had some lemon curd leftover after making the cookies.


Carrot Cake with Lemon Ginger Frosting

 This original carrot cake recipe uses fresh carrots and cream cheese frosting.

Carrot Cake with Lemon Ginger Cream Cheese FrostingOne difference I have noticed between my beloved sister and myself, is that when we are baking, I really prefer to make cookies and bars, while Em tends to bake a lot of cakes.

The real problem with this is that she and I live in different states, so if I want a sample, I have to make it myself.  I’m turning it over to Em now, to tell you about her latest genius cake creation.


Whenever I’m thinking about recipes that I could underwrite to this blog, I have to do my homework to make sure I’m not repeating something Jen has already done.

This week I decided to make a carrot cake as a homecoming surprise for my sister-in-law who has been out of town caring for her 94-year-old grandmother for two weeks because, let’s be honest, she’s kind of a saint.  My husband requested carrot cake.

I figured, of course Jen has already done a carrot cake recipe, but then I checked, and then I double-checked.  Then I triple-checked only to find that no such recipe existed on that pages of Jen’s Favorite Cookies.  Upon a little introspection, I’ve decided both to right this wrong and disown my sister for having a baking blog without this obvious and amazing staple.

(See related post: Hummingbird Cake)

Carrot Cake with Lemon Ginger Cream Cheese Frosting from JensFavoriteCookies.com

Add this to your Cake Recipes board on Pinterest!

I discovered not too long ago that people either love or loathe carrot cake, which I find surprising since carrot is one of the few cakes that I actually enjoy.  Having said that, I ordered a slice of carrot cake from a bakery once and I learned that day how painful and cruel life can sometimes be because I bit into it and found a raisin.

Maybe people who dislike carrot cake have only tasted the ones riddled with superfluous garbage like raisins and walnuts.  “Yuck!” said the woman who is posting a recipe with ginger and lemon zest in a cream cheese frosting.

Carrot Cake with Lemon Ginger Cream Cheese Frosting from JensFavoriteCookies.comCarrot Cake with Lemon Ginger Cream Cheese Frosting from JensFavoriteCookies.com

I guess I get it though, putting vegetables in cake sounds a little off-putting, albeit markedly less offensive than the time my Mom put vegetables in Jell-O (true story).

Another possibility is that none of these carrot cake haters has had a carrot cake made specifically for them…a really fun gesture when you’re not trying to take photos of your creation afterword to make it look like you know what you’re doing, which I never do.

So, you know, ignore the smears of orange frosting where there used to be lettering because the welcome home gesture was both hilarious and well-deserved.


Want more?  Try these made-from-scratch cakes!



Carrot Cake with Lemon Ginger Frosting
Cook time
Total time
A fresh carrot cake from scratch with lemon ginger cream cheese frosting.
Recipe type: Cake
  • 1½ Cups flour
  • ½ Cup sugar
  • ½ Cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ Cup vegetable oil
  • 1½ Cup grated carrots
  • drizzle of honey
  • 1 8-oz. package cream cheese, softened
  • 3 Tbsp. butter, softened
  • ¼ powdered sugar
  • ¼ milk
  • 1 tsp. fresh ginger, grated finely
  • zest of 1 lemon
  1. For the cake: . Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan; line bottom of pan with parchment paper (trust me).
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, brown sugar, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Add eggs and vegetable oil until well mixed. Add carrots and mix.
  3. Pour into pan. Drizzle with honey. Bake for approximately 40 minutes (or until a cake test comes out clean). Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes. Remove from pan and allow to cool completely before frosting.
  4. For frosting: In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix until smooth.
  5. Add more powdered sugar and/or milk to get a consistency you like.


Lemon Sour Cream Muffins

This lemon muffin recipe uses sour cream for flavor and creamy texture.  You’ll love these heavenly lemon muffins!

Lemon Sour Cream Muffins from JensFavoriteCookies.com I know there are parts of the country that are having terrible cold and snowy weather right now.  But Utah is not one of those parts.

I mean, it’s February, normally the coldest part of the year here, and the weather is warm and dry and spring-like.  Tulips and daffodils are starting to grow.  People are going outside with no jackets on at all.

I feel like I’m living in Arizona.

Not that I’m complaining, mind you.  I hate everything about winter, so I’ll take any warm and sunny day that comes along.  I’ll take it, I’ll smile, and I’ll probably purchase some lemons.

Because spring = lemons.  Right?

(See related post: Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins)

Lemon Sour Cream Muffins from JensFavoriteCookies.com

Pin this to your Breakfast Recipes board on Pinterest!

My last lemon muffin recipe was a disaster.  Please don’t be under any illusions that I have a gorgeous kitchen and all my baked goods come out perfectly.  I can almost guarantee I have had more disasters than you.  And I bet my sink has more dirty dishes than yours too.

I was leery about trying them again, since the last batch was so bland and gross, we ended up throwing them out.  No one would eat them.

But, we all have to soldier on at some point, and it was time for me to conquer lemon muffins.

Lemon Sour Cream Muffins from JensFavoriteCookies.com Lemon Sour Cream Muffins from JensFavoriteCookies.com

I really think the sour cream is key here.  Can you substitute greek yogurt?  Sure.  I might even do it someday.  It’s just that I heart sour cream.

Though, to be honest, I had to seriously resist the urge to use buttermilk.  Heavenly, sweet, delicious buttermilk.

(See related post: Spiced Zucchini Crumb Muffins)

Lemon Sour Cream Muffins from JensFavoriteCookies.com

My research tells me that people are just not that interested in a lemon muffin that does not include poppy seeds, so I hereby give you permission to add poppy seeds to these muffins.  As many as you want.  No changes necessary.

But, consider the seed-free variety too.  This clean simple flavor will put you right in the mood for spring!


Want more?  Check out these lemon recipes!

sugar-cookie-recipesstrawberry lemonadelemon syrup


4.0 from 1 reviews
Lemon Sour Cream Muffins
Cook time
Total time
A creamy lemon muffin.
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 12
  • ⅓ cup vegetable oil
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 lemon
  • ¾ cup sour cream
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 2 cups flour
  1. Combine oil and sugar in a mixing bowl. Add eggs and mix well.
  2. Add the zest and juice of one lemon, and sour cream, and mix well. Add salt, baking powder, and flour, and mix until combined.
  3. In a lined or well-greased muffin pan, fill cups about ⅔ full with batter. (This batch makes 12 muffins, so split the batter as evenly as possible between the 12 cups.)
  4. Bake at 400F for 16-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.


Lemon Raspberry Meringues

I was paid by Driscoll’s to create and post this recipe.  All opinions are my own.  Please visit Driscolls.com for more berry recipes.

Lemon Raspberry Meringues from JensFavoriteCookies.com  #RaspberryDesserts  - Fresh fruit makes the best dessert!I love the time of year when I can flip the thermostat from “heat” to “cool.”  It makes me happy.  What can I say?  I just love summer.

I’m seeing lots of summer fruits in the grocery store these days.  Is it weird to be in love with the produce section?  I love wandering around there, looking for the best summer fruits to bake with.

This week, it was raspberries.

Gorgeous, juicy, red, ripe raspberries.  My grandma always said if she was God, she would make raspberries the size of her palm.  I kind of like them the way they are; I love that little bite-size burst of flavor.

The Driscoll’s raspberries at Costco looked so good, I stood there in the store, dreaming of all the things I could make with them.  Then I bought two packages.

Lemon Raspberry Meringues from JensFavoriteCookies.com  #RaspberryDesserts  - Fresh fruit makes the best dessert!Lemon Raspberry Meringues from JensFavoriteCookies.com  #RaspberryDesserts  - Fresh fruit makes the best dessert!

If ever there was a summery dessert, it was meringues.  They are just so light and airy, not heavy, not overly fussy, just perfect for warm days.  I swirled some lemon zest and raspberries into these meringues to make them sweet and flavorful.

But, they are just not complete until you top them with whipped cream and more fresh berries.

By the way, you can score lots of fresh berries of your own by entering the giveaway below.  Driscoll’s has agreed to give one lucky winner $100 in Driscoll’s coupons, enough to last you all summer!

Lemon Raspberry Meringues from JensFavoriteCookies.com  #RaspberryDesserts  - Fresh fruit makes the best dessert!Lemon Raspberry Meringues from JensFavoriteCookies.com  #RaspberryDesserts  - Fresh fruit makes the best dessert!

If the summer berry cravings are getting the best of you, this little mouthful ought to take care of it.  Or, visit the Driscoll’s website for more #RaspberryDesserts recipe ideas using fresh berries.

Or, if you can’t wait for the baking, just eat them plain!

 Want more?  Look at these meringue recipes!

meringue cookiesPeppermint
lemon meringuesLemon


Lemon Raspberry Meringues
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Lemon and raspberry swirled meringues, and topped with whipped cream and fresh raspberries.
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 12
  • (1) 6 oz. package (about 2 cups) fresh raspberries
  • 1 cup + ¾ cup sugar
  • 3 egg whites
  • pinch of cream of tartar
  • pinch of salt
  • zest of one lemon (about 1 tablespoon)
  • sweetened whipped cream
  1. In a saucepan, combine 1 cup berries with 1 cup sugar. Use a potato masher to mash the berries. Bring to a boil, and boil for about 5 minutes, to create a jam. Remove from heat and pour into a dish. Chill for 1-2 hours, until cool.
  2. Place egg whites in a mixing bowl and whip on high speed. Gradually add sugar, cream of tartar and salt. Continue whipping on high for several minutes until stiff peaks form. Add lemon zest and mix until well combined.
  3. Add about 1-2 tablespoons of the jam to the meringue. Fold very gently, to create a swirled effect.
  4. Gently spoon meringue onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Make swirls about 2 inches in diameter, using a spoon to swirl and create a well in the center.
  5. Bake at 200F for 60-70 minutes. Let cool before removing from parchment paper.
  6. Top each meringue with sweetened whipped cream and fresh raspberries.

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Lemon Thyme Shortbread

This buttery shortbread recipe is sure to please!  The fresh lemon flavor is perfect for spring.

Lemon Thyme Shortbread and 13 Mothers Day Recipes on JensFavoriteCookies.com I love Mothers Day.  I never really want it to be a big deal, just an easy, enjoyable day.

I always tell my kids, what I want for Mothers Day is breakfast in bed, and handmade cards.  This year, my 15-year-old said, “All you want is a handmade card?  Really?!”

I think he was slightly more disappointed when I told him I would love it more if it was heartfelt rather than slapped together while breakfast was cooking.  But, even a hastily slapped together sentiment will do.

I might have to add one more thing to my list, though, because honestly, I love cookies.  And cookies really should be consumed on Mothers Day.  Something with a fresh, springtime flavor.  Something simple.

Lemon Thyme Shortbread and 13 Mothers Day Recipes on JensFavoriteCookies.com

This lemon shortbread is perfect for Mothers Day.  I added thyme to it because, well, I love thyme.  And putting an herb in a cookie is interesting.  And moms love that kind of stuff.

Speaking of things moms love, my friends are back, this time to celebrate Mothers Day!  We’ve put together 13 fantastic Mothers Day recipes just for you.  There’s sure to be a few things you and your mom will enjoy.  Check out each one of these awesome recipes!

13 Perfect Mothers Day Recipes on JensFavoriteCookies.com

1. Coconut Cupcakes from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
2. German Apple Cake from Magnolia Days
3. Baked Lemon Pasta with Broccoli and Shrimp from What Smells So Good
4. Cinnamon Pear Cake from Roxana’s Home Baking
5. Strawberry Whiskey Sour from Girl in the Little Red Kitchen
6. Huevos Rancheros from Crumb Blog
7. Triple Lemon Cake from Created by Diane
8. Banana Chocolate Chip Bread from Chocolate Moosey
9. Lemon Thyme Shortbread from Jen’s Favorite Cookies
10. Pineapple Coconut Sweet Rolls from Pineapple and Coconut
11. Caramilk Stuffed No-Knead Brioche from Gotta Get Baked
12. Mom’s World Famous Sponge Cake from Hungry Couple NYC
13. Brown Butter Pecan Fudge Ripple No-Churn Ice Cream from Cupcakes and Kale Chips


Lemon Thyme Shortbread and 13 Mothers Day Recipes on JensFavoriteCookies.com

More shortbread recipes you and your mom will love!

Pecan SandiesPecan Sandies Russian-tea-cakes-7Russian Tea Cakes shortbread recipeAlmond Shortbread


5.0 from 1 reviews
Lemon Thyme Shortbread
Cook time
Total time
A buttery shortbread with the flavors of fresh lemon and thyme.
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 3 dozen
  • ¾ cup butter
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, (leaves removed from stems)
  • 1½ cups flour
  1. Cream butter and powdered sugar. Add salt, zest, lemon juice, and thyme. Mix well.
  2. Add flour and mix well.
  3. Wrap dough tightly in plastic wrap and chill for 1-2 hours, until firm.
  4. Roll dough on a floured surface to ¼-inch thickness. Use cookie cutters or a knife to cut shapes approximately 2 inches in width. Place shapes on a baking sheet and bake at 350F for 8-10 minutes. Let cool before eating.

 buttery shortbread recipe

Lemon Cream Sodas and a Big Announcement!

This delicious lemon drink is a homemade Italian cream soda recipes; Try this lemon drink and many others in the Summer Mocktail Book!

Lemon Cream Sodas from JensFavoriteCookies.com -  find lots more summer mocktail recipes here too!I love a fancy beverage.  I even love the word “beverage.”  It just sounds cool.

Say it… Beeev-rage.  Beeeeeh-vrage.  See what I mean?  Groovy.

It can’t be denied that when you think of fancy beverages, you think of summer and summer fruits.  Summer is the perfect time for a fancy fruity beverage.

{Do you think I can work the word “beverage” into the post a few more times?  Beverage.  Beverage.  BEEEH-vrage.}

I was introduced to cream sodas a couple years ago, when my daughter ordered one at a restaurant.  I honestly had never had one before, so I did what any self-respecting mother would do…  I shouted “Mom tax!” and swiped a sip of her fun vanilla cream soda.

And, yum, it was good.  I knew in that moment I would need to learn to make homemade cream sodas.  And learn, I did.

Lemon Cream Sodas from JensFavoriteCookies.com  -  These Italian cream sodas are fun to make!  Find lots more mocktail recipes here too.

I used one of my favorite tricks and made some lemon-infused simple syrup.  It’s crazy easy… just cut the peel off a lemon in big ugly chunks, and throw it in a pot with 1 cup each of sugar and water.  Boil for a couple minutes.

Mix this syrup with club soda and half-and-half, top with some whipped cream, and voila!  Homemade Lemon Cream Sodas.  A perfect little summer refresher.

And speaking of refreshers… I have a big announcement to share with you.  {drumroll}

My very first e-book, entitled “10 Summer Mocktails” is now available!  In case you didn’t know it already, our home is full of kids and devoid of alcohol, so a collection of non-alcoholic fruity summer beverages seemed natural, and let’s face it, kind of fun.

10 Summer Mocktails from JensFavoriteCookies.com

A few of the recipes in this book are also found on the blog, and a few are brand new, only to be found in the book.

By the way, let me just tell you, my favorite drink in this book was kind of a surprise to me… it was the Watermelon Cucumber Punch.  I don’t even like watermelon.  My first attempt at that punch was a total flop, but I had a sense that it would taste really delish and refreshing, so I kept at it until I got it right.  Now my kids and I are addicted to the stuff.  The Fruitarian can drink 2 liters of it all by himself.

Lemon Cream Sodas from JensFavoriteCookies.com  -  These Italian cream sodas are fun to make!  Find lots more mocktail recipes here too.

To purchase this book for a mere two dollars, go to one of the links below.  If you leave a review on any of these sites or on this post, please let me know and I will send you a secret bonus recipe, one that is perfect for a hot summer day!

Purchase from Waldron Publishing

Purchase from Amazon

Purchase from Barnes & Noble

Purchase from iBooks


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Cherries Jubilee Cookies

Cherries Jubilee cookie recipe; This cherry cookie recipe uses tart cherries and rum extract to give the flavor of cherries jubilee.

Cherries-jubileeWhat’s your feeling about life changes?  Love ’em or hate ’em?

I always get excited to make big sweeping changes… right up until the moment I actually begin the changes, and then I’m no longer in love with the idea.

My first weak baby bird steps toward a much needed life change lately have left me feeling… well, it’s hard to describe.  Awful, I guess.  Uncomfortable might be a better word.  Maybe a little embarrassed.  At any rate, I don’t feel much like myself.

I needed a comforting activity to settle my mind, and baking today did the trick.  I chose an old favorite of Robb’s, and went to work.  Watching the butter and sugar turn all white and fluffy brings a sense of normalcy and calm to my life.

Is that weird?


Robb loves Cherries Jubilee.  He always wants me to make it, but that whole en flambe thing makes me squeamish.  Since I wasn’t going to be earning any amazing-wife points, I figured I would go for pretty-good-wife and turn his Cherries Jubilee into cookies. Continue reading “Cherries Jubilee Cookies” »

Lemon Cookie Truffles

Truffles recipe; This lemon cookie truffles recipe is simple to make with leftover lemon cookies.

truffles recipeI’m a big fan of treats that don’t require much time or baking.

I also like when a new recipe helps me clean up the flubs from an old one.  Not too long ago, I made these yummy Lemon Sugar Cookies.  But what I didn’t tell you was that the recipe I posted was my second try.  My first try was not that impressive.  Nothing to blog home about, if you know what I mean.

But I kept the leavings of my not-that-lemoney and not-that-soft first batch of lemon cookies, just in case I could put the crumbs to good use.

Carla suggested I make truffles.  Good idea, Carla.  I think I will.

Most of the cookie truffle recipes I’ve seen call for cream cheese.  I decided to rebel, to stick it to the man, and use frosting instead.  Yep, I’m a rebel.  I’ll be going out for a tattoo any minute now.

truffles recipe

The really great thing about using frosting is that you can buy this lemon frosting which kicks up the lemon flavor a notch or two.  The cookies by themselves were just not enough.

And normally I’m a make-your-own-frosting kind of girl, but for an quick and easy treat like this, I couldn’t resist the urge to let someone else make the frosting.

lemon-trufflestruffles recipe

I feel that way about dinner all the time.  Let someone else make it.  I’ll pay you to do it.

Because if I do it, dinner will be just like these truffles… quick, easy, and with no cooking required.

lemon ricotta cookies Lemon Ricotta Cookies no bake dessertsNo Bake PB Bars peanut butter pretzelPB Pretzel Bites

Continue reading “Lemon Cookie Truffles” »

Lemon Sugar Cookies

These chewy lemon cookies use fresh lemon juice; An easy lemon sugar cookie recipe for summer.  You’ll love this lemon cookie!

Lemon Sugar Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com - a very light lemon flavor makes these cookies a great choice any time!I bought myself a new maxi dress, so I guess I’m ready for summer.

I hope it helps, because this summer is just about more than I can handle already.  My 16 year old is taking summer drivers ed and holding down 2 jobs, which is a lot, considering he can’t drive himself to these jobs, and my summer was already full before it even began.

I’m going to have to get myself some habits to keep it together… like carrying one of those sticks of sunscreen and some lipgloss and sunglasses everywhere I go.

And planning ahead so I’m not writing my recipe posts the night before they are to be published.


The worst part about that is that my first batch of lemon sugar cookies was a bit below my standards. Ugly, too soft, hard to make, sub-par.  It’s a miracle I had time to photograph them!

Lemon Sugar Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com - a very light lemon flavor makes these cookies a great choice any time!

Why does lemon seem so summery?  Some fruits can feel at home in any season, but plain old lemon is a summer as it gets.

The lemon flavor in this cookie is subtle.  I personally think it’s perfect the way it is, but if you like a little extra lemoney kick, you can whip up some lemon glaze by mixing powdered sugar and lemon juice.  Just drizzle it over the top.

Lemon Sugar Cookies from JensFavoriteCookies.com - a very light lemon flavor makes these cookies a great choice any time!

I love that freshness that the lemon flavor gives.  These cookies are just perfect for a summer picnic, barbecue, or potlock.  There’s nothing about them that melts or that has an overpowering flavor.

By the way, these are great with other citrus flavors, too.  I have made these with fresh oranges and with fresh limes as well.  Maybe next time, I’ll try it with grapefruit!

Grapefruit cookies and grapefruit lip gloss, that sounds like a great summer day to me!

lemon sugar cookies
4.75 from 4 votes

Lemon Sugar Cookies

A soft sugar cookie with a light lemon flavor.

Cook Time 8 minutes
Servings 5 dozen


  • 1 cup butter softened
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1` teaspoon vanilla
  • juice of 1 lemon *see notes
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups flour


  1. Cream butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla and mix well.

  2. Add lemon juice, salt, soda, and baking powder and mix well.

  3. Add flour and mix until combined. Dough should be thick and crumbly.

  4. Drop spoonfuls onto a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes.

Recipe Notes

*This cookie has a VERY mild lemon flavor. Do NOT add extra lemon juice, or it will affect the texture of the cookie. For a stronger lemon flavor, add the zest of one lemon, or ½ teaspoon of lemon extract. You can also add a simple glaze made with lemon juice and powdered sugar.


Bizcochitos for Cinco de Mayo

Collection of Cinco de Mayo recipes, including Bizcochitos, or Mexican Wedding Cookies.  These Cinco de Mayo cookies are made with anise seed and lemon zest.

mexican wedding cookiesWhen I first decided to make something fun for Cinco de Mayo this year, I went to my Mexican sister-in-law for advice.  She turned me away from my first thought and suggested I make Mexican flan.  Her family eats it all the time, and she’s quite good at making it.

But I hate flan.  Like, really hate it.

I went looking for a cookie, because, after all, this is a cookie blog.  I found these little Bizcochitos, which, according to my research, are very traditional.  I asked my sister-in-law about them.  She said, “What are those?  I’ve never heard of them.”

Hmmm.  Perhaps my research was not all that amazing.

Then again, Bizcochitos are the state cookie of New Mexico, and in my nearly two years living there, I never heard of them either.

Honestly, all this conflicting information makes my head hurt.  At this point, I don’t care if they’re authentic or not.  They’re at least kind-of Mexican, (and by that, I mean they have a Mexican-sounding name) and my family is going to be eating them for Cinco de Mayo.

Maybe that’s all we need to know.

Mexican Wedding Cookies

By the way, as long as we’re not super worried about being authentic here, I should mention that these are meant to be made with lard, but I opted for shortening.  Mostly because I never keep lard in the pantry.  Aaaand, they’re meant to be a diamond shape, but mine are round.  I’m just bastardizing my “traditional” cookies right and left.

You’ll probably find something much more “Mexican” by searching through my friends’ blogs.  Remember last St. Patrick’s Day, when my friends and I got together to bring you a mega-ton of delicious somewhat-Irish food?  We had so much fun doing that, we decided to get together again, and this time bring you a mega-ton of delicious, somewhat-Mexican food.

We aim to please.

Cinco de Mayo

Find these amazing recipes and blogs here:

1. Alfajores from Roxana’s Home Baking
2. Spicy Fish Tacos with Avocado Yogurt Sauce from Crumb Blog
3. Classic Flan from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
4. Dulce de Leche Milkshake with Coconut Milk Whipped Cream from Chocolate Moosey
5. Lime Margerita Bars from Girl in the Little Red Kitchen
6. Shrimp and Avocado Ceviche from Magnolia Days
7. Tropical Fiesta Cocktail from Hungry Couple NYC
8. Paletas – Mexican Popsicles from Pineapple and Coconut
9. Bizcochitos Cookies from Jen’s Favorite Cookies
10. Mexican Hot Chocolate Cupcakes from Gotta Get Baked
11. Vegan Taco Salad from What Smells So Good
12. Gluten Free Tres Leches Cake from Kelly Bakes
13. Spicy Queso Blanco from The Messy Baker
14. Gorditas with Picadillo from Juanita’s Cocina
15. Strawberry Margerita Slurpee from Chocolate Chocolate and More

Continue reading “Bizcochitos for Cinco de Mayo” »

Strawberry Lemonade Cookies

Recipe for lemon cookies with strawberry frosting;  These strawberry lemonade cookies are easy to make with fresh strawberries!  Cake mix lemon cookies and easy fresh strawberry frosting.

lemon cookiesI’ve been noticing lately how many of my stories begin with the phrase, “So I went to Costco….”

So, I went to Costco and came home with a giant box of strawberries.  Gorgeous, sweet, juicy strawberries.  I wanted nothing more than to bake with them.

Only, baking with strawberries is a total disaster.  TOTAL.  They have such a high water content, they completely change the chemistry of anything you might want to make strawberry-flavored.

Don’t believe me?  Check for yourself.  Google “strawberry cookies” and notice that they are all made with strawberry cake mix, or freeze dried berries, or even strawberry milk mix.  Which actually doesn’t sound bad, but it doesn’t help me use up the 4 pounds of fresh berries in my fridge either.

I ate a few plain berries with this Key Lime Fruit Dip while I thought about it.

lemon cookies

My second idea was to make strawberry frosting.  I went all out and spent a half hour on a batch of Strawberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream.  Either I am really bad at Swiss meringue buttercream, or it is fussier than I was led to believe.

Probably both.

True story: after my meringue frosting disaster, I dropped onto my bed in frustration, only to have my husband point out (quite animatedly and repeatedly, actually) that I had frosting all over my face.

No, I did not go into a homicidal rage.  But I did contemplate it.

strawberry lemonade

In the end, the frosting was far easier than I expected it to be.  However, I did learn one very important trick.

The trick is to create a puree ahead of time, that has been reduced.  This concentrates the strawberry flavor, and reduces the water content.  Let it cool, and you’ll have no trouble at all mixing it with butter and powdered sugar to make one tasty fresh berry buttercream.

Which is perfect, because the cookies were crazy easy, too.  Summery, easy, and delicious… it’s the trifecta of perfect cookies!



You’re reading one of my Top 10 Most Popular Posts!  Check out the others here:

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4.8 from 4 reviews
Strawberry Lemonade Cookies
Cook time
Total time
A soft lemon cookie with fresh strawberry frosting.
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 1.5 dozen
  • 1 box lemon cake mix
  • ½ cup shortening
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 T. butter, softened
  • 3 T. strawberry puree *(see notes)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  1. Mix all ingredients until well combined. Drop small spoonfuls onto a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 9-10 minutes.
  1. Combine all ingredients, and mix until smooth and soft.
  2. Frost the bottom side of one cooled cookie, and sandwich it with a second cookie of a similar size.
To make strawberry puree, dice several berries (about 5-6) and place in a saucepan with 1-2 tsp. water. Bring to a boil, and use a fork or potato masher to mash berries. Continue cooking until puree is reduced by about half. Let puree cool completely before using.


Lemon Ricotta Cookies

Recipe for lemon cookies with lemon icing.  These Lemon Ricotta Cookies are deliciously fresh for spring!

ricotta cookies I took my rapidly growing kid the the store to try on some pants.  Every pair he owns is a good 3 inches too short.  With some experimentation and trying on, we discovered that his pants size is 26×32, and that he looks terrible in skinny jeans.

I walked into Aeropostale, armed with this pants size, and the clerk responded, “Daaaang!!  The kid has legs!”  And then she told me to hit the website.

By the way, you can’t get this size on the website, either.  Not. Even. Close.

His brother is even skinnier, though with slightly shorter legs (very slightly), but that kid can rock the skinny jeans.  Which is lucky for him, because skinny jeans are actually not too hard to find for skinny kids.  Go figure.

And while big and tall stores certainly exist, skinny and tall stores do NOT.  Trust me on this one.

lemon cookies

People say, “You should fatten that kid up.”
And I say, “Oh, good idea, I never thought of that before.”

Okay, yes, maybe I have a tendency to be a little snarky.  But it is an issue staring me in the face basically daily.

They sure didn’t get these super skinny genes from moi.

I mean, you’d think having a cookie blog would be enough, right?  I bake cookies, desserts, and snacks every week.  The kids eat them like they’re going out of style.  And still the doctor says things like, “No restrictions on his diet, let him eat whatever he wants.”

Already got it covered, doc.  Those boys are walking garbage disposals.

lemon cookies

I like the idea of ricotta in a cookie.  Besides providing a little extra protein and fat in my skinny kids’ diets, it also gives a nice soft, almost spongey texture to the cookies.

The lemon is for me, because it’s spring, and around this time of year, I start getting overwhelming cravings for all things lemon.  It’s just so fresh and bright!

If you’re a lemon addict, too, you’ll love these cookies.  Or you could check out this stuff:

lemon crinkles cookiesLemon Crinkles lemon pancakesLemon Pancakes frozen cherryFrozen Cherry Lemonade


Adapted from Giada de Laurentiis

Lemon Ricotta Cookies
Cook time
Total time
A spongey lemon ricotta cookie with lemon icing.
Recipe type: cookies
Serves: 4 dozen
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1¼ cup ricotta cheese
  • zest and juice of 1 lime *(see notes)
  • zest and juice of ½ lemon*
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 cups flour
  • zest and juice of ½ lemon*
  • 1 T. milk or cream
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  1. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs and ricotta and mix well.
  2. Add zest and juices, mix well. Add salt and baking powder, mix well.
  3. Add flour, and mix until combined.
  4. Drop spoonfuls of dough onto a baking sheet, leaving room for spreading, and bake at 375 for 11-15 minutes.
  5. For frosting, combine all ingredients, mixing until smooth. Use a very small amount of frosting on each cookie, spreading while cookies are still warm.
  6. Store in an airtight container between layers of wax paper.

 If you enjoy this recipe, you might also enjoy:

Lemon Ricotta Muffins from Healthy Food for Living
Iced Lemon Ricotta Donuts from La Casa De Sweets
Lemon-Blueberry Ricotta Scones from Tiffin Tales

Lemon cookies

ricotta cookies

Lemon Pancakes with Lemon Syrup

Lemon syrup is easy and fast to make.  Recipe for Lemon pancakes with lemon syrup for breakfast.

lemon pancakesHaving a dog is like having a two-year old.

They never eat when or what you want them to, bath time is a huge mess, you have to clean up disgusting poop messes, and they never clean up their toys.

I’m so sick of stepping on dog toys, I can’t stand it.

I wish I could figure out how to train him to put his own toys away.  We keep a basket on the floor in the living room with his toys.  I have picked them all up, and then watched him drag every single toy out of the basket and scatter them around the living room within 10 minutes.  It’s enough to make me a cat lover.

Wait.  What am I saying?!  That’s crazy talk, I take it back.

lemon syrup

One of the worst times for having a little dog around is when I’m preparing meals.

The dog, naturally, wants to sniff everything.  He tries to climb on the counters (fortunately, he is too small).  He gets into the trash can.  He stands right by my feet so he can eat everything I drop.

I’ve stepped on him more than once.

Which is why pancakes are such a fantastic dinner choice.  There’s no chicken or bacon or cheese to make the dog crazy, and the kids love having pancakes.

lemon pancakes lemon syrup

Our family has loved this lemon syrup for a while now.  It’s one of my favorite creations.  We’ll put it on just about anything.

Lemon pancakes just seemed like an easy choice to compliment the lemon syrup.

I also considered adding some fresh herbs to these pancakes, maybe rosemary or thyme, but in the end… I forgot.  Dang it.  Next time I make them, I’m adding some rosemary.

I wonder what the dog will think of that?

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Six Great Lunchbox Cookies

I’m SO ready for school to start.  And I’m SO not ready for school to start.  The homework struggles… the carpooling… the getting up early to cook a hot breakfast.  Ugh.  Maybe I’ll go back to bed, while I can.

In the meantime, I’m leaving you with some of my favorite school lunch cookies.  These are all cookies which pack easily (they don’t have frosting, and they’re not too cakey, so they shouldn’t make too big a mess) and taste fantastic.

school lunch cookies

1: Lemon Crinkles, which has become both a family, and a JFC classic.

2: Biscoff Oatmeal, because you can’t go wrong with Biscoff spread.

3: Chocolate Marshmallow, which looks innocent, but has a marshmallow surprise inside.

4: Toffee Almond, which is perfect for dunking in milk.

5: Oatmeal Chocolate Chip, my favorite cookie from my childhood.

6: Triple Chocolate Chunk, for your chocoholics.

Enjoy your school year!!

This post linked up at Tidy Mom; Joy In My Kitchen;

Lemon Blackberry Cookies

My day was going so well.  I had a great morning of blogging, the kids did their chores, and I was in pretty good spirits.  Then I got an unexpected phone call that went something like this:

Robb: Can you pack a bag for me?  I’m going to Boise.
Me: Are you serious?
Robb: If I come home right now, can you take me back to the office?
Me: Right now?  When do you leave?
Robb:  My rental car will be here in 45 minutes.

*long sigh*

Continue reading “Lemon Blackberry Cookies” »

Lemonade Pound Cake

A moist lemonade pound cake, with lemonade soaking syrup and pink frosting.

Source: Ummm… about that.  I found this on an apron site.  Weird but true.

When I was a poor college student, I used to make this simple dessert called Lemonade Pie.  It’s just vanilla ice cream, mixed with frozen lemonade concentrate, poured into a graham cracker crust and frozen.  It was one of the few items that I had the A) time, B) money, and C) knowledge to create.  It was a little tart, but very refreshing when it was hot, especially since my dorm was without air conditioning.

Continue reading “Lemonade Pound Cake” »

Easter Recipe Round-Up

By Easter, I am so ready to be outside.  It has a tendency to be very cold and gloomy here in the winter, and I’m just one of those people that craves sunlight.  Of course, it’s not unusual for us to have snow for Easter, but this week has been very sunny, so I have high hopes.  I’ve put together a collection of some favorite recipes that would be perfect for your Easter celebration!

Wherever you live, I hope you have perfect weather for an Easter egg hunt!

Continue reading “Easter Recipe Round-Up” »

Lemon Crinkles

A recipe for soft and chewy lemon crinkle cookies made with coconut.

Lemon Crinkle cookies from Jen's Favorite Cookies

Source:  Beyond Kimchee, a blog about Korean food.

Yield: About 3 dozen cookies

 It’s spring, which for us means it’s time to plant… at my mother-in-law’s house.  My husband had a busy Saturday planned, but scrapped it all to spend the day working in his mother’s yard, spreading mulch and planting the large garden she had recently purchased.  Time is of the essence with plants, you know.  He called to request my help.  I told him I would be right over, which was kind of a lie.  I baked cookies first.

Continue reading “Lemon Crinkles” »