Peanut Butter Frosted Brownies

Ermahgaaaawd! These brownies are… basically my happy place. In my every day real life I have a chocolate & peanut butter obsession. It’s bad. Well, no it’s not. It’s really good. I’ve probably done that combination to death by now, but I can’t help it.

These brownies started off as a recipe adapted from these PB Swirl Brownies from Love and Olive Oil. I liked it, it was good… but I wanted to make it my own!

So, I used a basic brownie recipe and kept the PB Swirl (which I doubled). I made my brownies in a 9×13 pan. The first time I tried to make my own version of PB Swirl Brownies I overbaked them because the middle didn’t seem like it was set. That made the edges too crispy. Whomp whomp.

I’m not a big fan of over crispy brownie edges so I had to try again. If you’re counting… this makes 3.

This time, I left the PB swirl out. I used it as a frosting instead! Yup. Frosting. I baked the brownies, and then as soon as they came out of the oven I poured the melty peanut butter mixture over the top. The PB layer on top sets up and gets a little firm, or at least I think it will. It did for me, but I also kept these in the fridge. Sometimes I like cold brownies. Don’t be judgey.

Unless you’re going to be judgey and tell me how awesome these brownies are. 😉

So, apparently the 3rd time is the charm. Find out for yourself and make these PB Frosted Brownies!

Happy Baking!
-Holly

PS. I think I might make some PB Frosted Brownies using my favorite BOOZY Brownies the next time I make these!

PPS. Here are some more PB & Chocolate recipes: PB Cookie Dough Brownies, PB Cookie Dough Stuffed Cupcakes, PB & Chocolate Scones, Peanut Butter (and Chocolate) Layer Cake, Chocolate PB Kettle Corn, PB Filled Chocolate Cookies… I’m obsessed!

Peanut Butter Pretzel Pi(e)!!

Y’all! Saturday was an epic Pi Day!

Did you just ask me what Pi Day is!?

Shame on you. Pi Day is March 14, a day when math nerds celebrate the marvelous Pi. This year was even more special because it was 3/14/15!

If you know me IRL, you know math is not my thing. Math isn’t even close to my thing… I constantly carry a calculator and use it A LOT.

Do you know why I celebrate Pi day? Because bakers and other food people had the awesome idea to co-opt Pi day and turn it into Pie Day! YAY!

The pie I made this year was adapted from Erica’s Sweet Tooth & Inside Bru Crew Life. It came together really easy, and tastes pretty darn good!

The crust is made of pretzels and Tag-along GS Cookies. Who doesn’t like Girl Scout Cookies!? I added them to the crust for a little bit of sneaky peanut butter flavor! I originally planned on putting this crust into a pie plate (pan?). I couldn’t get the crumbs to stay along the sides, so I switched to a springform pan and just made a thick bottom crust!

I’m not really a big fan of cheesecake,  so I added extra peanut butter to the filling to balance out the cream cheese flavor a little bit. I love that the filling used Cool Whip, so I didn’t have to take the extra step to whip heavy cream! The next time I make this pie, I’m going to chop up the Reese’s PB Cups. I thought that using the mini ones would be OK, but they really made it a pain in the rump to cut this pie into slices.

The last piece of this pie is the chocolate frosting on top. I was going to make chocolate ganache to pour over the top, but… well… I ran out of motivation and I had a can of store-bought frosting in the pantry. I didn’t measure out how much I actually used, but it was under half a can. Next time I’m going to (not be lazy and) just make the ganache.

Overall this Peanut Butter Pretzel Pi(e) gets thumbs up. The.mr really liked it. I thought it was OK. Click HERE for the recipe.

Happy Making!
-Holly

Peanut Butter & Oatmeal Doggie Treats!!

pb dog treats

The dogs in my life deserve Christmas cookies too, dontcha think? I know TipperTheTerrier thinks he does!

The best thing about baking dog treats? Dogs don’t care what they look like and they’ll eat pretty much anything. Also… you can throw just about any “dog safe” ingredients together as long as they make a dough!

It’s been a while since I’ve made dog treats and these Peanut Butter & Oatmeal Treats don’t disappoint. They’re super easy and come together really quick.

I can’t vouch for taste, but Tipper didn’t complain when I enlisted him for taste testing!

Want to make some for your special pup? Here’s the recipe. Or check out my Other Dog Treat Recipes!

Happy Baking and Merry Christmas to all our doggie friends!
-Holly

Chicken Linguine in Peanut Sauce- N2MCC37

pasta in peanut sauce

I adapted this recipe from Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook for week 37 of my New 2 Me Cooking Challenge. The cookbook calls it “fast” and “low-fat”. It’s only supposed to take 30 minutes, but it took me almost 45. I had to cook the chicken (on the GF grill), mince the garlic, and otherwise get myself organized… I bet I’ll be able to get it done in under 30 minutes next time. It’s also supposed to be “low fat”. I didn’t add all the fat up, so I’m not sure if my version can still claim to be low fat. I do know that I had more calories in my version than in the original (1490 vs 1268).

I changed a few things from the original. Like using chicken instead of turkey, and I used more than called for. I used linguine instead of fettuccine. I used ¼ of a large lemon for the juice and hoped it was a tablespoon. And finally, I doubled the garlic and minced it myself. One clove of garlic is  about equal to 1 teaspoon pre-minced (store-bought, in water).

I didn’t *exactly* follow the original directions when I was making this recipe either. I suggest buying the Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook to see the difference. I’m afraid I’ll make it sound too confusing!

Anywaaaays. This recipe got thumbs up from the.mr and I. It was a little spicy and the peanut butter was subtle. . If you like saucey pasta you might want to double the sauce. And finally, I’ll probably use crushed pineapple instead of chunks next time…

Happy Making!
-Holly

Click HERE for my Chicken Linguine in Peanut Sauce recipe!

Homemade Peanut Butter!!

I wasn’t going to share this recipe because… well… I don’t think it really counts as a recipe. I mean, seriously, you basically do 2 things. AND it takes like 10 minutes. in fact it’s so quick and easy that I have no idea why I hadn’t made my own peanut butter before!

There are recipes all over the interwebs for homemade peanut butter and the differences are pretty small. Some use flavored nuts, or warm nuts. Some use specific oil, or none at all. I even came across recipes that brown sugar & cinnamon or chocolate!

I ended up with a “plain” version because I was trying to save some calories. This recipe ends up having about 10 less calories per tablespoon than my store bought brand.

I used store brand dry, honey roasted (unsalted) peanuts in this recipe, but I imagine if you’re really worried about preservatives (there weren’t a lot in my peanuts, but they still had some) you could probably use organic peanuts. I’m not willing to spend the extra $2 to go organic. Some of the recipes I read call for the nuts to be toasted in the oven. Apparently warming them helps release the oils and makes them softer. I wouldn’t know because I didn’t try it.

I also used store brand honey… again, if you’re “all natural” use organic.

As for the oil… one thing all the recipes agreed on is NOT to use olive oil. From what I’ve read the taste just doesn’t compliment the peanuts. I think I might try using coconut oil the next time I make this Homemade Peanut Butter, but I’m not sure how it would affect the texture (being a solid and all). I guess it’ll be worth experimenting with!

Taste & texture-wise it’s not the same as regular store bought peanut butter. It’s not as spreadable, and you definitely have to stir it before use. I don’t know how it compares to “natural” peanut butter sold at the grocery store because I’m too cheap to buy  it! Overall, I actually like the homemade version a little more than the store bought kind. The only thing is… I’ll still have to keep a jar of regular PB in the pantry for baking. The homemade/ natural kinds aren’t very good to bake with because they break down easily. I mean they don’t have a ton a stabilizers & preservatives in them…

This Homemade Peanut Butter is totally worth the 10ish minutes it takes to make. Just try to avoid eating it ALL right from the jar while hiding in the pantry, mumbling under your breath about your precious. 😉

Check out the recipe HERE.

Happy Making!

-Holly

Nacho’s (N2MCC19) & Chocolate PB Kettle Corn

Last week wasn’t a good week for me. I always plan what we’re having for dinner and what I’m going to bake… and I usually know what I want to make by Saturday, which is the day we do all our grocery shopping for the week. That didn’t happen. I literally had NO IDEA what I wanted. At all. I’ve been wickedly un-motivated, and feeling really “blah”. AND I was distracted by the fact that I was going to run in my first 10k race on Saturday.

That’s why there isn’t a recipe for week 19 of my New 2 Me Cooking Challenge. I made Nachos. I know… I feel like it’s a total cop-out. Honestly I have no way to rationalize my complete lack of a real recipe. I’m sorry. I did turn the oven on to bake the tortilla chips (which I made the effort to cut into pieces), then I piled on some cooked ground turkey, fresh tomatoes, onions, jalapeno, Monterey-jack cheese, and some sharp cheddar. After that, I put the massive nacho pile under the broiler until all the cheese was melted. Then we ate it all.

Those pictures above? That’s Hubs’ plate. He added some jalapeno, and some super-hot salsa.

For our weekly sweet food I wanted to do something REALLY easy and my brain instantly went to THIS Chocolatey Peanut Butter Caramel Popcorn. I adapted it a little, and ended up with THIS Chocolate Peanut Butter Kettle Corn.

It was really good! I switched out the Crunch N Munch for kettle corn, and the peanut butter for peanut butter chips. Changing to the peanut butter chips made this a little less melty than the first version. I didn’t take any pictures ‘cuz it looks (pretty much) the same. And because I was too busy shoving it in my face. Food makes the “blah” go away, riiiiight?! 😉 I think it’s called a chocolate high.

So, if having the “blahs” wasn’t bad enough, Tipper (our dog) isn’t doing so well. He’s pretty old and it’s starting to show. Basically there are things wrong that are (probably) going to kill him eventually… but he was doing really good until Wednesday when he started wobbling & showing neuro signs in his rear end/ hips. After a trip to the Vet (for a shot of dexamethasone, some subQ fluids, AND a prescription for Prednisone) he’s getting closer to normal. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that we’ll be able to wean him off the Prednisone and keep him off!

I finished off my week running my very first 10k race. It was awful. One day, I might feel like talking about it. Today is not that day.

-Holly 

PB Chocolate Scones!!

I adapted this recipe from Brown Eyed Baker for Easter brunch last Sunday.

The grocery store was out of small containers of whole milk so I substituted Half N Half (that we keep in the house for our coffee). My dough was pretty sticky, and I think this might be the reason why.

I switched out the kinds of chocolate and added some peanut butter chips… because, who doesn’t love chocolate and peanut butter together!? The next time I make these I think I’m going to chop up some Reese’s Cups!

I also varied (does that word work?) from the original recipe when it was time to add the wet ingredients. The entire original recipe was done in the food processor, but mine isn’t big enough. I’m kind of kicking myself for not buy the bigger/ more expensive food processor. ;| live & learn.

Like I said before my dough was sticky. Kneading it a few times on the counter (dusted w/ flour) helped.

Overall these stayed moist and they’re dense but not too heavy. They also make a great “snack” with a cup of coffee in the afternoon.  Not that I need an excuse to eat extra chocolate throughout the day. 😉

Hubs liked these so much he wouldn’t share with his coworkers. That’s a winning recipe in my book.

Happy Baking!

-Holly

Wanna see the recipe for these PB Chocolate Scones?

Chocolatey PB Caramel Corn!!

I adapted this recipe from Crazy For Crust! It’s sooo good, like crazy good.
 
I’ve had it bookmarked for (what seems like) FOR.EV.ER. and I really wanted to make something that was super-easy and shareable … there’s some sort of major sporting event tonight that people like to gather for… I think it has something to do with football. 😉
 
The next time I make this I’m going to use candy melts. Just like the notes from the original recipe said, the white chocolate melted on my hands. This is probably only a concern if you’re going to be sharing. If you happened to be hunched over a large serving bowl shoving handful in your mouth and growling at anyone who comes to close… melting chocolate won’t be a problem. Not that that happened or anything.
 
I’ll also probably use either peanut butter OR peanut butter chips… this time I was running really low on PB and I wanted to make sure I’d have enough left over for my bagel tomorrow.
 
I let both cookie sheets set in the fridge for a few hours before I broke up the chunks and mixed them together.
 
This stuff is so good I’m glad we’re not going to any Super Bowl Parties so I won’t have to share any of MY Chocolatey PB Caramel Corn!! Click on the link to see my recipe.
 
Happy Making!
-Hey Waitress!!
 

PB&J Cinnamon Rolls!!

 

My birthday was this past Friday. And nothing says “grownup mature adult woman” like hanging out in sweatpants and baking these PB&J Cinnamon Rolls. Riiiiiiiiight?  They took the place of a birthday cake for me this year… I’m not sure if I’m OK with the fact that I had to bake my own birthday “cake”, but either way these rolls are totally worth it.

The dough is from In Jennie’s Kitchen, and it’s the same one I used for my Cinnamon Rolls.

The filling & icing recipes are adapted from Runs With Spatula.

I had the same problem with these that I do with most things. That is… It’s somehow impossible for me to roll things out into an 11×8 rectangle. Seriously.  I know that sounds stupid, but I really can’t ever get things rolled out to the right size, usually I get these weird lumps and uneven edges! It drives me crazy!

At any rate… these PB&J Cinnamon Rolls (click for the recipe) are a WIN. Get in the kitchen and make them. Right. Now.

Happy Baking!

-Hey Waitress!!

Homemade Butterfingers & Banana Walnut Scones

It’s possible that I’m addicted to Butterfingers. I’m pretty sure it’s my favorite candy bar. But, it’s possible I’ve said that about Snickers, or Reese’s too… don’t judge.
No matter what, I Iove me some Butterfingers. I also have a list of recipes to copycat which Butterfingers happen to be on. Of course I googled “homemade butterfingers” and got, like, a millioooooon hits. They all seemed to be the same recipe made with candy corn & peanut butter. They all claimed to have the taste right, but were lacking in the crunchy part (that I love). I was planning on adding crushed up unsalted chips to give it the right texture. But then an amazing thing happened! This post  from Erica’s Sweet Tooth popped up in my blog reader! Erica added Frosted Flakes! Genius! These had to happen.
Thankfully, it was only a few days after Halloween, and my aaaahmazing Hubs found a giant bag of candy corn in the discount section of the grocery. Score!
The candy corn took almost 3 minutes to melt in the microwave and I actually had to add the peanut butter then nuke it for another 15 seconds. Getting this stuff stirred is definitely an arm workout (but totes worth it).
When you press the mixture into the pan, dump the whole thing out at once. Don’t do it in sections. Why? Because when you try to cut the sections, they might break into (not square) pieces. It happened to me.
I used 2 ½ bags of candy melts, and only melted half a bag at a time.
Overall these get thumbs up from my tasters. The only complaint is that they (still) don’t have that real Butterfinger texture. Also, don’t store these in the fridge… you might chip a tooth.
Click here for My Version of Butterfingers.

On Sunday, I also made these awesome Banana Walnut Scones that I (slightly) adapted from Wholesome Homemaker. I added extra chopped walnuts and didn’t measure out how much banana I had. I was skeptical of these, mostly because I don’t think whole wheat has any place in my sweets/ desserts/ snacks. Just my bagels. They’re good though.I usually overwork my scones or biscuits but not this time! They’re perfect. A little like banana bread… I think I should’ve added some chocolate chips!
 
That’s what happened  in my kitchen last weekend!
Happy Baking!
-Hey Waitress!!