Sunday, March 1, 2015

Cocoa Cake Pops

Cocoa Cake Pops

I’d rather be thinking about spring-themed treats right about now, but man… Winter will not leave. So I made these adorable little mugs of not-so-hot cocoa. Hopefully we’ll be on to warmer weather soon, but in the meantime, I hope you enjoy these cold weather inspired cocoa cake pops. I love how cute they turned out!

Letters Candy Mold

I wanted perfectly-shaped handles for the mugs to help pull off the look, so I thought I could use my Letters Candy Mold to make them and I think they turned out pretty great. If you don’t have a candy mold that would work, you could also just pipe thick C shapes on to wax paper.

Candy Mold

To use the mold, fill the shapes with melted candy wafers using a toothpick or squeeze bottle. Place the mold in the fridge for a few minutes for the candy to set. To release the letters from the mold, give it a gentle twist and push on the plastic from the bottom of the shapes to help release the letters. Hold the mold over a towel so the letters won’t break as they fall out from the mold.

I used the letter C and also used D, G, O, Q by filling a curved portion of those letters to mimic the C.

Candy Letters

You can make the handles ahead of time and then just save them until you need them.

Shaping Cake Pops

Here are the basic cake pop instructions to get you started. Once you have them rolled into balls, continue shaping them by hand. Make an indentation on one end and then roll, rotate and slide the ball on wax paper to form a cylinder like above. The wax paper makes it much easier to shape and achieve defined edges.


The indentation in the top of the cylinder shape will act as a well for the “cocoa”.

Cocoa Cake Pops

These pops are dipped in melted marshmallow white candy wafers first and then melted chocolate is placed in the well. If you made a perfect cylinder shape without a well and dipped the pops in coating, once you placed the chocolate coating on top for the cocoa it could look like it was sitting too high above the mug. But you can totally skip the whole indenting step if you want. They’ll still be cute.

Here’s how they are dipped and decorated.

Sipping Cake Pops

Dip the cylinder in the melted coating allowing the excess to fall off. Gently press a handle shape into the side of the pop and attach a red jumbo heart sprinkle on the front before the coating sets. Let dry completely and then fill the well with melted chocolate coating (Note: I mixed chocolate with vanilla to get a lighter, more cocoa-like shade of chocolate.) Use a toothpick to coerce the coating into a circular shape if needed. You can also gently tap the bottom of the pop stick on the counter to help settle and flatten out the coating.

Mini Marshmallows

But wait. We need teeny, tiny marshmallows for our cocoa.

Cocoa Cake Pop

Before the chocolate sets, place 3-5 into the coating.

Oh so cute!

Cocoa Cake Pops

Enjoy!!! Hope these warm your heart.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Everyday Brownies

Everyday Brownies

I was craving chocolate. Just chocolate. Okay … WAS is probably the wrong choice of words because I crave chocolate everyday.

Fudgy Brownies

And these easy Everyday Brownies from my friend Kamran’s new book Hand Made Baking were … p-e-r-f-e-c-t. < That was me singing btw.

So decadent and fudgy!

Brownie Ingredients

I love brownies because the ingredients are simple and you don’t have to mess with your mixer to make them. And truth be told, when I’m craving chocolate in a pinch, I will break out a brownie mix to quickly satisfy my craving. But these brownies. Oh my gosh, they are insanely chocolatey and totally worth making my craving wait an extra few minutes for their decadence.


They call for dark brown sugar in addition to the white sugar. Sweet!


And the chocolate. Oh, the chocolate. Cocoa plus chunks of chopped dark chocolate get mixed in before baking.


And in no time, you end up with these sinfully sweet squares to enjoy.


Everyday Brownies

1 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 1/3 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs, cold
3/4 cup all purpose flour
5 oz roughly chopped dark chocolate cacao (54-70 percent cacao)

  • Position rack in upper third of the oven.
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper leaving an overhang on each side.
  • In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Mix in both sugars, the cocoa powder and salt with a silicone spatula or wooden spoon.
  • The mixture should be lukewarm before adding the eggs. If not, set aside to cool slightly. To test, a clean finger should be able to comfortable stay in the mixture without getting burned.
  • Vigorously stir in the vanilla and eggs. Once the batter appears shiny and the eggs are blended in well, add the flour and mix just until the flour has disappeared.
  • Briskly stir in the chopped chocolate and spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.
  • Bake for 38-43 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center emerges slightly moist with batter.
  • Allow brownies to cool in the pan placed on a wire rack. Life the parchment paper and transfer brownies to a cutting board and cut into 16 equal squares.

Recipe from Handmade Baking 2014, shared with permission from Chronicle Books.


Want more?

Here’s a little peek.

Handmade Baking

I started out wanting to make this Everyday Chocolate Cake.

I mean if I could take a bite out of a book, I would eat the heck out of that cover.

Handmade Baking

But, then I wanted to make these Chocolate Snickerdoodles.

Handmade Baking

And then these Heartbreak Chocolate Truffle Cookies were calling to me.

They’re still calling to me… Screaming!

Handmade Baking

But there’s lots of other non-chocolate yumminess inside too.

Check out Hand Made Baking sometime if you want to satisfy your sweet tooth… or visit Kamran’s Blog, The Sophisticated Gourmet for more goodies.


Sunday, February 8, 2015

30 Valentine’s Day Worthy Treats

I rounded up a bunch of fun treats for the fourteenth. If you’re looking for something yummy, cute or chocolatey to make for your sweetheart this Saturday, then check out the links below. The list is a mix of some of my favorite past Valentine’s Day desserts plus some straight up chocolate decadence, too. Enjoy!


LOVE Cake Pops

1. Mini Cake Pops Display


Assorted Box of Cake

2. Box of chocolates cake


Chocolate Truffles

3. Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffles



Big Love

5. Big Love Butterscotch Cookie


Fourteen Layer Cake

6. Fourteen Layer Cake


Meringue Kisses

7. Meringue Kisses



8. Cha Cha Chocolates


Cheesecake Pops

9. Cheesecake Pops



10. Red Velvet Cake


Cookie Stands

11. Sugar Cookie Dessert Stands


Puppy Love Mini Cupcakes

12. Puppy Love Mini Cupcakes


Whale Cookie Valentine Treats

13. Whale Cute Sugar Cookies


S'mores Brownies

14. S’mores Brownies


Strawberry Cake Pops

15. Strawberry Cake Pops



16. Valentine Bear Cake Pops


Candy Cupcake Toppers

17. Sweet Shape Candy Cupcake Toppers



18. Cookie Molds


Chocolate Fudge Brownie Bites

19. Itty-Bitty Brownie Bites


Kit Kat Cream Cheese Brownies

20. Kit Kat Cream Cheese Brownies


Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies

21. Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies


Salted Caramel Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Cookies

22. Melty Salted Caramel Hazelnut Chocolate Chunk Cookies



23. Cupid’s Arrow Red Velvet Cupcakes


Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake Bars

24. Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake Bars


Mocha Brownie Milkshakes

25. Brownie Mocha Milkshakes



26. Vintage Valentine Cookies


Peanut Butter Cup Cake
27. Peanut Butter Cup Cake


Give Someone A Big Kiss

28. Oreo Kisses


S'mores Cupcakes

29. S’mores Cupcakes



30. Big Kiss Cake Pops


Hugs and Kisses and Happy Valentine’s Day this Saturday. Hope it’s the sweetest!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Sweet Shapes Candy Cupcake Toppers

Sweet Shapes Candy Cupcake Toppers

I have another easy little project to share with you today using candy wafers and one of the candy molds in my Bakerella for Make’n Mold line. If you liked the candy jewel pops from a few weeks ago, then I think you’ll enjoy this project too.

It’s a fun way to make the cutest candy cupcake toppers … perfect for your sweetheart!

First, we’ll need this Sweet Shapes Candy Mold.

Bakerella for Make'n Mol

Here’s a glimpse of the super cute packaging.

Bakerella Candy Wafers

We’ll also need some candy wafers in happy colors. Melt them and you are ready to go.

Painting candy molds

Okay, let’s get some melted candy in this mold. You can take the easy road and fill the shapes with just a couple of colors …(or even just one) in no time, but I wanted to show you how fun they could be using all the colors in the product line.

To fill in the mold, use a toothpick dipped in the melted candy wafers to draw in defined areas. If you’re filling in larger areas with one color, you could spoon it in carefully or use a squeeze bottle to pipe it into the mold.

Painting candy molds

Then layer on more colors until the mold cavity is full. (This takes a little longer than just using one or two colors, but the great thing about these is you can make the toppers ahead of time.) Make sure to let each color set before adding another color on top. When finished, pop the mold in the fridge for a few minutes to set.

They don’t look like much here, BUT…

Sweet Shapes Candy Mold

…When you turn them over, they’ll look as sweet as can be.

Sweet Shapes Candy Mold

I mean, look at that cute little bear with his perfectly pink paws. Oh my gosh.

I illustrated these shapes and it’s so fun to see them evolve from a two dimensional drawing on the computer to an adorable edible 3d version.

Sweet Shapes Candies

To remove the shapes, give the mold a little twist, then turn the mold over and let them release on to your counter. You can do this over a dishtowel also to help prevent any from breaking. If some don’t want to pop right out, then twist again and gently lift them out by the edge, one at a time.

Making cupcake toppers

To turn them into cupcake toppers, just dip a toothpick in more melted candy wafers and attach it to the back of each candy shape and let dry.

That’s it. Super easy.


I like placing these toppers on vanilla frosted cupcakes so the colorful candies really stand out.

Candy Cupcake Toppers

Leave them just like this or add a few pastel sprinkles around the edge of the cupcake to spruce them up a little more.

They’ll make the sweetest Valentine’s Day treat!


Below are the Bakerella for Make’n Mold products used in this post if you want to give them a go.

You can find them in stores at A.C. Moore Crafts.

Or, if there’s not a retail location in your area, you can also order online from Make’n Mold at the links below.


Monday, February 2, 2015

Groundhog Day Cupcakes

Groundhog Cupcakes

Happy Groundhog Day!!! I know it’s late in the game to make these little guys, but I had a last minute idea for them this weekend using some fave candies and I didn’t want to a year to see how they might turn out. Bookmark these cuties if you want to make them next year for Groundhog Day… or I guess if you need any Beaver cupcake inspiration, then the faces could come in handy for that too. ; )

Now, I couldn’t be more ready for Spring. I’m hoping for a cloudy morning when Punxsutawney Phil pokes his little head out this morning. If he sees his shadow, then he’s predicted another six weeks of wintery weather.

But regardless if he’s right are not, I hope these little guys make you smile.

Here’s how to make them.

Cupcakes and candy

You can use the chocolate cupcake and frosting recipe below to get started.

Then you just need to organize your candies to decorate.


  • Hershey’s Chocolate Drops for cheeks and paws
  • Brown M&M’s for ears
  • Reese’s peanut butter cups for heads
  • Black coated sunflower seeds for noses
  • Chocolate wafer cookies crumbled up for dirt

Candy Eyes

Groundhog faces

  • To make the faces, first separate the peanut butter cups from the wrappers, but leave on so you can move them around without getting chocolate on your fingers.
  • Use a toothpick dipped in some melted chocolate coating to act as glue and attach the candies. Place two Hershey’s Drops in the middle.
  • Then dot on more coating and attach the nose, and two candy eyes.
  • For the teeth, take the marshmallow bits, press them together flat for teeth and attach them with melted coating.
  • Draw on eyes using a black edible ink pen and let dry.
  • If they cups started to warm up from your touch, place them in the fridge for a few minutes while you frost the cupcakes.

Decorating groundhogs

  • Frost the cupcakes using an offset spatula. Apply the frosting around the sides of the cupcake with a downward motion using the offset spatula, leaving a “well” in the center.
  • Roll or press the frosted sides of the cupcake into chocolate wafer cookie crumbs for the soil.
  • Place a groundhog face gently in the center until secure. You can coerce the crumb coated frosting around the base to help hold it in place if necessary.
  • Then attach two M&M’s in position for ears with more melted chocolate as glue and let dry.

Groundhog Cupcakes

Finally, take two more Hershey’s drops and place on each side of the groundhog’s face for paws.


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup cocoa
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1/3 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
2/3 cup whole milk
1/2 cup hot water
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
2 Tablespoons milk


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Fill cupcake tray with 18 cupcake liners.
  • In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients together with a wire whisk. Add eggs, oil, vanilla and milk and mix until combined. Add hot water and mix. It will be very liquid.
  • Fill cupcake liners about 2/3 full. Pour into liner with a large spouted measuring cup for ease.
  • Bake for 15 minutes or until done.
  • For chocolate frosting, beat 1 cup butter until creamy. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and mix. Slowly add confectioner’s sugar and cocoa and mix until combined. Add 1-2 Tablespoons milk and mix until creamy and smooth.

Groundhog Day Cupcakes

Super cute!!! Here’s hoping for an early spring!

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