Tag Archives: spring

March 2015 Wrap-Up

march-15-wrap-up-1March cruised by, just like every month.  Here in Salt Lake the exceptionally warm weather this year has me ready for spring even earlier than usual, and I’ve been dreaming of lemon bars and Easter treats.

Before I get too carried away, though, I want to take a minute to revisit March and all the recipes I created for you.

My favorite recipe of the month was a toss up between the Crispy Kit Kat Blondies and the Chocolate Peanut Butter Magic Bars.  If I’m really forced to choose, I would say the magic bars, but know that they are in a statistical dead heat.

The Mint Crinkles appeared to by your favorite recipe this month.  I had a lot of good feedback on these cookies, since they are so easy to make and fun for St. Patrick’s Day.

mint-crinkles (4 of 4) Mint Crinkles

The Cookie of the Month for March, these simple cake mix
cookies are flavored with mint and rolled in powdered sugar.

seo-tips-3 5 SEO Tips & Tricks for Food Bloggers

A departure from my normal dessert recipes, this post is for
my food-blogging friends, who might benefit from a little
knowledge.

skittles-soda (11 of 11) Skittles Soda

This might be the easiest recipe I have ever made.  And one
of the most fun!  My kids loved making their sodas different
colors and flavors!

lemon-thumbprints (3 of 5) Lemon Thumbprints

These lemon cookies gave me a very good excuse to make a
delicious jar of lemon curd!

carrot-cookies-3 Carrot Cake Cookies

These babies are filled with the Carrot Cake flavor M&M’s!
They are a fun choice for the Easter season.

blood-orange-scones-2 Blood Orange Scones

When blood oranges are in season, one must bake with them.
These buttermilk scones really hit the spot!

crispy-kit-kat-blondies-5 Crispy Kit Kat Blondies

Chocolate chips and Kit Kat bars are not the only things that
give these bars their interest.  They are also made crispy with
the help of some crisp rice cereal.

chocolate-peanut-butter-magic-bars-2 Chocolate Peanut Butter Magic Bars

Chocolate Peanut Butter Day was really fun to celebrate with
these easy to make, soft and gooey bars!

sparkling-blackberry-limeade (4 of 6) Sparkling Blackberry Limeade

When regular old limeade isn’t good enough, throw some
blackberries in that baby!

Curious to know what’s coming up in April?  Cheesecake.  The easy kind.  And more recipes using sweetened condensed milk. And a new Cookie of the Month. And a few other fun surprises.

I mean, I can’t give everything away, can I?

And have we connected on Pinterest yet?  Because we totally should.

march-COM-winner

The winner of the March Cookie of the Month giveaway is Allison S!  Thanks for sharing these on my Facebook page, Allison!  Allison said this about the cookies…  “We loved these cookies! I made them because they were easy and I had all of the ingredients, but I think they’ll be a staple around here. My 7 year old said, “I think these are my favorite cookies ever!”

See you in April, folks!

Carrot Cake Cookies

This carrot cake cookies recipe uses fresh carrots, white chocolate, and M&M’s for a fun springtime treat!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MMsCarrotCake #CollectiveBias

carrot-cake-cookies-recipe

My sister recently berated me for not having a carrot cake recipe on my site, and then she proceeded to give me one.  Did you see it?

After that humiliation, I decided it was time to right that wrong and have more carrot-themed desserts available for you, my dear readers.

I guess it was perfect timing then, that I stumbled across this package of M&M’s® Carrot Cake flavor at Walmart.  I’ll be honest, I was a little leery about trying this flavor.  It sounded a touch unusual.  But the white chocolate put me over the edge, and I bought a package to try.

I was glad I did.  I was surprised how much I liked them, since I’m kind of an M&M’s® purist.  I think it’s tough to beat the good old original plain M&M’s®.

(See related post: Monster Cookies)

carrot-cake-cookies-recipe

Pin this to your Easter Celebration board on Pinterest!

I pulled a couple carrots out of the fridge and put together these fun and easy cookies.  I was far too lazy to make cream cheese frosting for them, so I mixed in some white chocolate chips instead.

Scratch that.  What I meant to say is, these cookies are so simple, they don’t need cream cheese frosting.  Yeah, that’s it.  *ahem*

But they do need white chocolate chips.  They kind of give a nod to the frosting, without actually having to frost anything.

carrot-cake-cookies-recipecarrot-cake-cookies-recipe

The kids were surprised at how delicious these cookies were.  Which always irritates me.  I think the presence of carrots made them suspicious.

The Fruitarian called them “surprisingly delicious.”

mms-walmart-5

If you’re up for a nice surprise too, you can look for a display like this in the Easter candy section at your local Walmart.  And don’t forget to grab a couple carrots!

 

Want more?  Try these fun flavors!

easy-hummingbird-cakecarrot-cake-recipechocolate chip banana bread cookies

 

Carrot Cake Cookies
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A carrot cake cookie with white chocolate chips and Carrot Cake M&M's.
Author:
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 3 dozen
Ingredients
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup grated fresh carrots (about 2-3 carrots)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • dash cloves
  • ½ cup quick oats
  • 1½ cups flour
  • ½ cup white chocolate chips
  • ½ cup M&M's® Carrot Cake flavor
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugars. Add egg and grated carrots and mix well.
  2. Add vanilla, soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and quick oats, and mix well. Add flour and mix just until combined. Fold in white chips and M&M's.
  3. Drop small spoonfuls onto a baking sheet and bake at 350F for 10-12 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

 

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!

easy-hummingbird-cakeeasy-caramel-cake-recipeschocolate-frosting-cake

 

Carrot Cake with Lemon Ginger Frosting
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A fresh carrot cake from scratch with lemon ginger cream cheese frosting.
Author:
Recipe type: Cake
Ingredients
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
FROSTING:
  • 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
Instructions
  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 Blueberry Cookies

A recipe for a soft lemon cookie with blueberries.

Source: Hot Polka Dot, although I made one important change.

Yield: nearly 4 dozen cookies

I really try to avoid Costco.  I deliberately did not renew my membership because the stupid place costs me way too much money.  There are only a few things that I really need to get there, and everything else is a better deal somewhere else, so I just don’t go.  Once in a while, I mooch off my mother, or my mother-in-law, and get them to take me there, so I can get the frozen meatballs I love (no, I don’t make them from scratch, sorry to disappoint!) and the giant bag of shredded cheddar cheese, and the mega-pack of toilet paper.  Have you ever noticed that almost everyone at Costco is buying toilet paper?  I have.  These are the kinds of things I think about.  Welcome to my world.

At any rate, my last trip to Costco netted me a huge box of fresh blueberries, among about $200 worth of other things.

Continue reading “Lemon Blueberry Cookies” »