Wednesday, May 27, 2015


Pug Cake Pops

I made the cutest chocolate and peanut butter pug cake pops for you. These little guys were inspired by a recipe from I’m working with them to put my spin on one of the sweets from their site. Not that they don’t already have cute covered though. Tablespoon’s community is overflowing with fun recipes, creative ideas for entertaining and more. I love the way they think with categories like rainbow, OMG, party, and mini.

And you guys know it’s no surprise that I love little treats, so when I found this adorable pug cake on their site, I knew I had to down-size it to bite-sized proportions. But the full-size version is just as fun if you want one big cake.

Alright. Let’s get this pug party started.

Pug Cake Pops

Here are the goodies you’ll need to make 16 Pug Pops.
4 cups crumbled chocolate cake
1/3 cup buttercream frosting
2 tablespoons peanut butter
White candy wafers
Chocolate candy wafers, reserve 16 wafers for decorating
Medium heatproof bowl, plus two smaller heatproof bowls
Wax paper
Baking sheet
16 lollipop sticks
Cake pop stand
8 Tootsie Rolls
16 black sunflower seeds
32 sugar eyes with black edible ink pen
Pastel confetti sprinkles
Candy Bones
Toothpicks. I can’t live without toothpicks when it comes to decorating cake pops.

Here’s a link to my full instructions for making basic cake pops if you need more help.

Cake Balls

  • Stir peanut butter and buttercream until mixed together and then incorporate into chocolate cake crumbs until completely combined.
  • Roll the mixture into 16 balls and place on a wax paper covered baking sheet. Let the rolled cake balls rest for about 30 minutes and then place in the freezer for about 15 minutes to firm up. When firm, transfer them to the fridge to remain chilled (not frozen) for dipping.

Dipping Pops

  • Melt chocolate wafers with vanilla wafers. Start with vanilla and add a few chocolate wafers at a time until you achieve a lighter shade of brown. (Note: You can use peanut butter candy wafers insead of mixing chocolate and vanilla.)
  • When ready to dip, remove a cake ball from the fridge. Dip the end of a lollipop stick in the melted candy wafers and then into the cake ball and dip.
  • Make sure the cake ball is completely coated and tap off any excess.
  • Before the coating sets, place a chocolate candy wafer on the front – towards the bottom half of the pop. Hold in place until the coating dries and place in a cake pop stand until you’re ready to decorate.


We’re using Tootsie Rolls for ears, confetti sprinkles for tongues, sunflower seeds for noses and sugar eyes for the eyes. But you already guessed that one.

Pug Faces

  • With the candy wafer already in position on the pop, dip a toothpick in melted chocolate and swirl two large dots on the front of the pop in position for eyes. Then gently press the sugar eyes right on top so that the chocolate surrounds the eyes.
  • Dot on coating in position for the nose and tongue and then attach a sunflower seed and pink confetti sprinkle and let dry.

Decorating Pugs

Then finish the mouths. Use a toothpick dipped in melted chocolate candy wafers to apply coating on top of the already attached wafer … under the sunflower seed nose and down around the sides of the tongue. Make sure to overlap the confetti sprinkle so it looks like a sweet little tongue is sticking out.

Tootsie Rolls

Now for the ears. Cut a tootsie roll candy in four equal parts and hand shape into rounded triangles for ears. Note: microwave the candy for 3-4 seconds to make it easier to shape. Don’t overheat.

Pug Cake Pop

  • Use more melted chocolate to attach the ears and add finishing details to the mouth.
  • Draw big black pupils on the eyes with the edible ink pen. Feel free to stop here, but if you want to add a few more details, then keep going with me.

Pug Pops

  • Draw on eyebrows with a toothpick dipped in the melted lighter brown candy coating. Then dot tiny dark chocolate freckles on each cheek.
  • And most important, add a little sparkle to the eyes by dotting on melted white candy wafers.


But let’s dress these doggies up a bit more…

Candy Bones

… with candy bones.

Pug Cake Pops

Because they make the super cutest bow ties, you know.


This post is a collaboration with

Monday, May 11, 2015

Cotton Candy Oreo Cupcakes

Have you tried the Cotton Candy flavored Oreo cookies yet? They are a new limited edition flavor available exclusively at Target. I had some for the first time a few weeks ago and fell for them right away. I don’t eat the golden Oreos that often because I always gravitate to the original… but these had me going back for more.

So when Target asked me to create a recipe using the cookies for their blog, A Bullseye View, I was so excited to play with them. I thought showcasing the pink and blue creme centers would be fun for decoration because the colorful insides definitely made them more fun to eat.

Head on over to A Bullseye View for the recipe and links to a few of the other projects I’ve made for them.


Do you have a favorite limited edition Oreo cookie flavor you enjoy? Red Velvet, Green Apple, Gingerbread, Watermelon, Cookie Dough? I’m curious.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Cocoa-Cola Snack Cake with Back in the Day Bakery

Cocoa-Cola Cake

I think I forgot how much I love snack cakes. Easy, single layer cakes that take all the fuss out of cake decorating and throw in all the fun of snacking on sweets. This yummy one is a Cocoa-Cola Cake with Chocolate Icing that I just made from Back in the Day Bakery’s brand new book, Made with Love.

I wanted to try one of their recipes out because this Wednesday, I’m going to be chatting it up with none other than Cheryl and Griff Day… the delightful duo of Back in the Day Bakery. If you are in the Atlanta area, stop by Little Shop of Stories on Wednesday, May 6th at 7 p.m. for the Q&A and book signing. It’s going to be good times. (More info here.)

Back in the Day Bakery Made with Love

Okay, let’s make a cake.

Snack Cake Ingredients

This one calls for easy ingredients including Coca-Cola. Awesome.

Snack Cake Batter

Mix everything up and spread the batter in a baking pan lined with parchment paper.

Mini Marshmallows

Oh yeah, we’ll me marshmallowing this baby up, too.

Yum marshmallows

Right after the cake finishes baking, sprinkle mini marshmallows on top and place back in the oven for a couple of minutes to get all melty. Yum!

Cocoa-Cola Frosting

Then whip up the chocolate frosting.

Chopped Pecans

And mix in chopped pecans. This just keeps getting better. Cocoa-Cola Cake Yumminess

Oh my oh my. Place large spoonfuls of frosting all over the top of the cake to make it easier to spread without messing with the marshmallows underneath too much.


Spread evenly on top.

Cola Cake

Reserve some of the chopped pecans to sprinkle on top of the cake, too if you like.

Cocoa-Cola Snack Cake

If I had the patience to let this cake cool all the way before I made the first cut, I think it would look a prettier. But, I COULD NOT wait to dive in. Actually, I took a spoon to the corner of the pan before I even cut into it. Highly recommended deliciousness.

P.S. Now I want a whole book on snack cakes.


Cocoa-Cola Snack Cake with Chocolate Icing

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda*
1 cup Coca-Cola, room temperature
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature

1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup Coca-Cola
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
one 16-ounce box confectioner’s sugar
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. Grease 9 X 13 inch baking pan and line with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.

Sift flour, cocoa and baking soda together and set aside. In a small bowl, mix together the cola, buttermilk and vanilla. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the sugar and butter on medium high speed for 4-5 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula if necessary.

Turn the mixer to low and add the flour mixture in thirds, alternating with the cola mixture and beginning and ending with the flour. Remove the bowl from the mixer and scrape the bottom with a rubber spatula to make sure everything it incorporated. Spread evenly into prepared pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean.

Scatter marshmallows over the top of the hot cake and return to the oven for two more minutes to get melty. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack.

Make the chocolate icing: In a medium bowl, combine the melted butter, cocoa, Coca-Cola and vanilla. Mix with a spoon until smooth and creamy. Gradually add the confectioner’s sugar, mixing until the icing is completely smooth. Fold in the pecans. Spread frosting over the warm cake. It will firm up as the cake cools. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. Note: I added an extra tablespoon of melted butter to my frosting to make creamier. I also reserved some of the chopped pecans to sprinkle on top of the cake.

Hope you enjoy snacking on this cake as much as I did.

Recipe from Back in the Day Bakery Made with Love, © 2015

* NOTE: This recipe is now updated. I had a typo originally in the ingredient list. It should be 1 teaspoon baking soda for the cake.


And here’s a little peek at some of the other deliciousness you’ll find inside the book Made with Love. So much yum!

Back in the Day Bakery Made with Love Cookbook

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Monday, April 27, 2015

It’s a Spring Bake Giveaway!

YAY for Spring! I’m so happy to finally break away from all the cold weather and enjoy the warm outdoors. Wouldn’t it be nice if it could stay this way all year long. Minus the pollen.

Well, to celebrate the season, I’m having a super Spring Bake Giveaway for a KitchenAid Stand Mixer in one of the lovely colors shown below.  The winner gets to pick their favorite! Awesome.

Which color would you want to see on your kitchen counter? Aqua Sky? Ice? Pink? Majestic Yellow?

Enter the Spring Bake Giveaway for a chance to win a KitchenAid 5-quart Artisan Series Stand Mixer:

  • To enter, just leave a comment on this post answering the following question.
  • What’s your favorite outdoor activity? Oh and pick your favorite pastel mixer color, too.
  • Deadline to enter is Thursday, April 30th at 8:00 p.m. ET. Sorry. Time’s Up. Winner announced below.
  • One winner will be chosen at random and announced sometime Thursday evening on this post.

Here’s to Happy Baking! Good luck!


 The winner of the Spring Bake Mixer picked Pistachio as their favorite color.

And that winner is Kara, Commenter 4286. Congratulations! Oh what fun you’ll have with this beauty in your kitchen with newly painted cabinets. ENJOY!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Ben & Jerry’s: Ice Cream Social

Ben & Jerry's

A couple of weeks ago I had the super fun opportunity to travel to Vermont to visit Ben & Jerry’s Headquarters.

Here’s a peek at my adventures in ice cream through photos.

Ben & Jerry's

So let’s start by stating the obvious. Ice cream = amazing. I felt like I was in wonderland. By the way, their offices pretty much look like the packaging exploded all over the walls. Such a fun environment. From the indoor slide that greets you in the lobby, to the Cookie Dough Conference Room to an actual on-site ice cream shop in the middle of the building. It was undeniably Ben & Jerry’s at every turn.

Ben & Jerry's

Did you know employees can take home three pints of ice cream? EVERY. DAY. Repeat. EVERY. day.

I would be in such big trouble if I worked here.

Ben & Jerry's

Oh hey Cakespy. I forgot to mention the ultra adorable Jessie was there. My sweet friend from the days when I first started blogging. It was such a surprise seeing her that we almost fell down from hugging.

And by the way, you can totally stop reading my post right here and visit her blog for the best recap EVER. She basically illustrated all of our adventures in watercolor ice cream characters.

Vermont trip

I’m not kidding. It’s awesome.

Okay, back to my less colorful account.

Ben & Jerry's

Before the trip, I would have to say that my favorite flavor was Chocolate Fudge Brownie. But that’s because it’s the only one I would repeatedly buy. It was like a dream to be able to try out so many different flavors while I was there.

But I still didn’t get anywhere near tasting them all of them so which ones are your favorites at home? I have a few new ones. New York Super Chunk, Cotton Candy, and Chocolate Therapy really got me.

Ben & Jerry's

During the event, we learned about the company’s values.

Their Product Mission, Economic Mission and Social Mission, which stood out to me the most because of how focused everyone at the company is to make things better. At first all I wanted to do was eat ice cream, but it was inspiring to learn about all of their initiatives outside of making great flavors.

Ben & Jerry's

Later in the day, we teamed up with the Ben & Jerry’s Flavor Gurus (real title) to make our own custom ice cream flavors. This photo pretty much sums up how much fun we had working with Peter.

Ben & Jerry's

Ben & Jerry's

With all the ingredients to choose from, it was hard to decide which way to go at first.

Ben & Jerry's

But we started with a really cute name that Jessie came up with and we went with it.

Our team (Me, Jessie and Nick of On Second Scoop) made a peanut butter ice cream with blondies, caramel and pecans.

It was pretty delicious and our flavor gurus loved it, too. Score!

Want to know our flavor name?

Ben & Jerry's

Gentlemen Prefer Blondies! After working out our flavor, we collaborated with one of the designers to create our own poster.

Ben & Jerry's


We also got a sneak peek at their brand new BRRR-ito that’s available in scoop shops starting TODAY!


That’s right… your two favorite flavors, topped with a fudge drizzle, cookie crumbs and wrapped up in a soft and chewy waffle wrap.

Ben & Jerry's

The next morning, we visited a dairy farm and learned more about how their Caring Dairy Program.

Ben & Jerry's

Here’s Stacie from One Hungry Mama making a new friend.

Ben & Jerry's

I made a couple, too.


Ben & Jerry's

In the afternoon, we went on a factory tour. Eeek!

Ben & Jerry's

Owen! Our truly awesome tour guide made it memorable.

Ben & Jerry's

Ben & Jerry's

They were making Coffee Toffee at the factory that day and we were able to enjoy it straight from the production line. Soooo good.

Ben & Jerry'sOh hi Jimmy! You taste great too. : )

Ben & Jerry's

Here’s the whole ice cream loving group.

Amanda Topper, Deanna from Domestic Chicky, Sandra Perez, Colin Pinkham from Jezebel, Gwen Paja of the LA Girl, Kristin Hunt from Thrillist, Owen!, Stacie from One Hungry Mama, Jessie from Cakespy, Nicole from Popsugar, Natalie from NJinLA, Me, Nick from On Second Scoop and Katie from Good Life Eats.

Ben & Jerry's

After the tour we tried samples of this Vanilla Brownie Caramel flavor. It’s not sold in pints, but it totally should be.

Then in the afternoon, we went snowshoeing around the factory, through the woods and down to the flavor graveyard where people can pay tribute to the “dearly depinted.”

Ben & Jerry's

Ben & Jerry's

Ben & Jerry's

Ben & Jerry's

So much fun.

So much ice cream …

Ben & Jerry's

Oh and in the end, I even got to meet Ben!

It was a pretty sweet couple of days.

Disclosure: Travel and accommodations provided by Ben & Jerry’s to attend this media event.


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