Showing posts with label chocolate. Show all posts
Showing posts with label chocolate. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

DIY Protein Bars (Peanut Butter Black Bean Brownies)

Ever wish your chocolate fix had a little more staying power as a snack? These homemade protein bars are black bean brownies that are made with lots of eggs and peanut butter to really pack in the protein. You can even add walnuts, almonds, or other nuts to get even more protein into your dessert.

Unlike store-bought protein bars these taste like chocolate, not cardboard and don't have any questionable additives. This can be a completely organic whole food recipe if you choose and is gluten and dairy free.

This recipe tastes really rich and moist, but is actually fairly low in sugar and pretty healthy overall. Makes eating a brownie for a snack (or even breakfast) better for you than many, many store-bought snack and breakfast foods.

Homemade Protein Bars Recipe

  • 1 1/2 cups cooked black beans (or one 15oz can drained and rinsed very well)
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Optional additions such as such as additional nuts to pack in even more protein
  1. Add all ingredients together in a blender (except for any optional additions) and blend until smooth.
  2. Stir in additions if desired (or you could wait and sprinkle them on top too).
  3. Spread into a greased 8x8 baking pan.
  4. Bake at 350F for 20-30 minutes. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

DIY No Bake Chocolate Pot De Creme

This dessert is like eating truffles with a spoon. It is rich and chocolatey and amazing. I like this version because there is no baking or water baths to mess with.

Well unless you decide to share with your kids, then you will need a bath to clean them up, because they will lick the bowls clean, but their faces will be full of chocolate.

Homemade No Bake Chocolate Pot De Creme Recipe

  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup cream
  • 8 ounces dark or semi-sweet chocolate chopped or use chocolate chips (use a chocolate you enjoy eating without any extra sweetener, because there is no sugar in this recipe)
  1. Place chopped chocolate in a heat safe mixing bowl and set aside.
  2. In a saucepan slowly heat milk and cream.
  3. In a small mixing bowl whisk egg yolks.
  4. When the milk and cream begins to bubble at the edges, slowly add half to the egg yolks while whisking steadily. This tempers the egg yolks and prevents them from turning into scrambled eggs. Then add the yolk mixture to the saucepan and heat slowly until it begins to bubble at the edges again and thickens.
  5. Remove from heat and pour over chopped chocolate (though a strainer if necessary to remove any chunks of egg).
  6. Allow to sit for a minute and melt chocolate and then stir until smooth.
  7. Pour into individual serving dishes (small bowls, ramekins, jars, espresso cups, etc.).
  8. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight to set.
  9. Serve topped with whipped cream if desired.

After eating, bathe small children.
Makes 6-8 small but decadent servings.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

DIY Strawberry Heart Brownie Cheesecake Bars (perfect for Valentine's Day)

I made this recipe last year for Valentine's Day when I wanted a dessert that combined chocolate, cheesecake, strawberries, and hearts! This recipe is quite similar to these tasty Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Brownies but makes a whole 9x13 pan and has a more brownie and less cheesecake ratio. You could also just use the swirling heart technique I show here to decorate other favorite cheesecake or bar recipes as well. If you used a package mix for the brownies and store bought strawberry sauce these would be quite quick to make.

Homemade Strawberry Heart Brownie Cheesecake Bars Recipe (and simple swirling sweetheart decoration technique)

Drop spoonfuls of strawberry sauce on top of cheesecake
  • 9x13 pan of your favorite fudge brownies prepared with optional 1 cup chocolate chips (use a package mix or this easy recipe for better than boxed brownies)
  • 2 (8oz) packages cream cheese, softened (or even homemade yogurt "cream" cheese works great)
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Strawberry sauce or pureed strawberry jam for decoration (you could use store bought strawberry sauce or jam to save time and I bet this recipe would be great with raspberry as well)
Drag a butter knife through the middle of the circles
  1. Bake brownies according to box directions or prepare homemade brownies 9adding an optional 1 cup chocolate chips) in a 9x13 pan.
  2. Mix cream cheese, milk, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until creamy and smooth. Pour cheesecake mixture on top of baked brownies.
  3. Now comes the fun part of decorating with swirly hearts that is so easy. Simply drop spoonfuls of sauce onto the top of the cheesecake mixture and then drag a butter knife down the center of the circles. With the 9x13 pan I made a grid and swirled the hearts in two different directions. But you could make each one swirl in a different direction or in a circle around a circular cake, however you like!
  4. Bake at 350F for 25-35 minutes until firm in the center (watch these carefully though as all oven are different and you don't want the top overly brown. Chill for at least 2 hours or overnight, and serve. 
Makes one thick 9x13 pan of bars.

Close up of heart swirls before baking

Mmm chocolate, cheesecake, strawberries and hearts!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

DIY Black Bean Brownies (gluten free, dairy free)

I heard about black bean brownies quite a while ago, and possibly quite a few of you have too. But it wasn't until recently that we finally found good beans here and I was able to actually try out this unique dessert. The texture is a little different than traditional brownies, but not at all a bad sort of different. And they are incredibly easy to make, much healthier than most brownies, and really delicious.

I thought I go ahead and post about these now, because if you need to take a dessert to a holiday gathering where you know someone has allergies or is trying to follow a gluten free, dairy free, or low carb diet it can often be quite difficult to find a good recipe, but this one fits the bill. At the same time, it is so good no one will know it is a healthy dessert or gluten free unless you tell them.

Homemade Black Bean Brownie Recipe

  • 1 1/2 cups cooked black beans (or one 15oz can drained and rinsed very well)
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Optional additions such as chocolate chips, M&Ms, or nuts, but read labels carefully if you are trying to avoid allergens for others
  1. Add all ingredients together in a blender (except for any optional additions) and blend until smooth.
  2. Stir in additions if desired (or you could wait and sprinkle them on top too).
  3. Spread into a greased 8x8 baking pan.
  4. Bake at 350F for 20-30 minutes.

Friday, May 25, 2012

DIY French Silk Pie

As a kid, my parents would take turns taking us on mother-daughter or father-daughter dates to different places to spend some one-on-one time together. One of the places we often went to was Baker Square, where I would almost always get French silk pie. Probably because it was chocolate, and this pie was amazing there.

Well, recently I was having a craving for French silk pie, so that's what I asked my husband and boys to make me for mother's day. It turned out amazing, especially considering we only have a hand crank mixer, so my awesome husband whipped up the perfect fluffy filling with just that and a lot of elbow grease. If you have an electric mixer or especially an electric stand mixer this recipe would be a lot easier.

This recipe is slightly adapted from allrecipes. The filling either makes a thick regular 9 inch pie pan full of filling or a thin 9x13 pan. We made a 9x13 pan and topped it with a lot of whipped cream and chocolate chips. This was a good choice for us because it is such a rich filling. This recipe does have raw eggs in it, so if you are in a high risk group or worried about consuming raw eggs you can buy pasteurized eggs, pasteurize you own eggs, or just skip this recipe.

Homemade French Silk Pie Recipe

  • Pie crust (1/2 of this recipe make one regular pie pan, 1 whole recipe will make a 9x13 pie pan)
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 4-8 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder (depending on how dark your cocoa powder and how dark you want your filling)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs
  • whipping cream whipped for topping pie
  • chocolate chips or chocolate curls for topping pie
  1. Prepare pie crust using this or your favorite recipe and let cool.
  2. For the filing cream together butter and sugar. Blend in cocoa and vanilla.
  3. Beating in one egg and beat until thoroughly incorporated. Up to five minutes per egg for optimal consistency, even with a regular electric mixer. Repeat with each remaining egg. Keep whipping until fluffy.
  4. Spread in cooked and cooled pie shell.
  5. Top with whipped cream and chocolate as desired and refrigerate until serving and for storage.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

DIY Easy Dark Chocolate Cake

This is the recipe for the cake my guys made for my birthday. It was absolutely awesome with chocolate ganache and caramel sauce on top, but I am sure it would be great with regular frosting on top as well. I think it would be hard to go wrong with this cake as a base for a dessert recipe.

Homemade One Bowl Dark Chocolate Cake recipe

  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup boiling water
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease 9x13 cake pan.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Add the eggs, milk, and oil, mix until well combined. Stir in the boiling water last. Batter will be thin. Pour evenly into the prepared pan.
  3. Bake 30–35 minutes in the preheated oven, until the cake tests done with a toothpick. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Easy Chocolate Truffles

I love chocolate ganache. The extremely simple combination of good dark chocolate and real cream taste pure and elegant. These chocolate ganache truffles are quite easy. I found this method and ratio of chocolate to cream to work the best for shaping into balls. It doesn't melt all over your hands, but is still soft and pliable. These are great for a party, gift, or anytime.

Homemade Chocolate Ganache Truffle Recipe

  • 8 oz chocolate chopped or chips (use whatever % of cacao that you prefer to eat plain because there is no additional sweetener in this recipe, I used half 62% dark chocolate chopped and half semisweet chocolate chips, and we all really liked them)
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • cocoa powder or chocolate for covering the truffles
  1. Chop the chocolate and place in a heat safe mixing bowl.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the cream to just simmering, stirring frequently to avoid burning. Once the edges begin to bubble, pour over chocolate.
  3. Let is sit a few minutes so the chocolate begins to melt, and then stir until well combined and smooth.
  4. Chill in the refrigerator a few hours or over night.
  5. When the mixture is very firm, but still pliable, scoop out rounded teaspoons full, and use your clean hands to roll them into round balls.
  6. At this point, you can either roll them in cocoa powder right away, or return to the fridge or freezer to chill a little more before dipping them in melted chocolate.
  7. Store in the refrigerator.
Makes about 2 dozen. 

Thursday, January 12, 2012

DIY Oreo Truffles Pops

Kids seem to think everything is better when it comes on a stick, and sometimes this keeps both them and their food slightly cleaner. So for some pretty easy stocking stuffers, I took a few of the Oreo Truffles that I had made and made them into Oreo Truffle Pops. I simply made up a batch of Oreo Truffles and then poked a stick into the bottom. Actually, I used some of the tiny straws that sometimes come with our bags of milk here because I am cheap and have no idea where to buy lollipop sticks here. But if you happen to have a Michaels or Hobby Lobby nearby, you should be able to buy actual lollipop sticks if you want to.

You could also try inserting the stick before freezing the chocolate filling and then dipping them in chocolate. Then you can poke the stick into a piece of styrofoam to hold it upright while it drys, similar to cake pops. This would make them more round but a little more tricky to work with. My little kids don't care if their chocolate lollipop has a flat bottom or not, so I just went the easy route of inserting the stick after they had already been coated in chocolate and hardened.

Wrap in cellophane or plastic wrap, and tie with a pretty twist tie or ribbon, and you will have a beautiful stocking stuffer, Valentines treat, party favor, or small sweet gift for any other occasion.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

DIY Oreo Truffles

Oreo truffles are being seen all over blogland, so you may have already seen these before. But the reason they are such a hit is because they both incredibly easy and incredibly delicious. If you haven't tried to make these yet, you really should. They are amazing. I made these and some other chocolate candies for Christmas gifts, but they would also be perfect for Valentine's Day or any other day. Every day is sweeter with chocolate.

Homemade Oreo Truffle Recipe

  • 1 package Oreos
  • 8 oz cream cheese (softened)
  • 1 bag of chocolate chips (to melt for dipping)
  1. Blend the Oreos in blender, or crush into very fine crumbs in a plastic bag with a rolling pin.
  2. In a mixing bowl, blend together softened cream cheese and the Oreo crumbs.
  3. Roll into quarter sized balls.
  4. Place in freezer to chill for at least 15 minutes or more; this helps them stay together better when dipping in melted chocolate.
  5. Melt chocolate in medium saucepan or a double boiler over low heat stirring occasionally until completely melted and smooth.
  6. Dip each Oreo ball in melted chocolate and place on waxed paper, tin foil, or silicone mat to harden.
  7. Store in the refrigerator or freezer.
This recipe makes about 3 dozen truffles. If you want to save any for the future or to give away, you should probably hide them in the back of the freezer, or you will eat them all right away. Or maybe that is just what I had to do.

    Thursday, December 8, 2011

    DIY Stocking Stuffers: Chocolate Covered spoons

    I started filling the boys stockings on December 1st and let them open one present each night until Christmas Day, when they can open the rest of their presents. So I've already been working on small treats for them. These small chocolate covered spoons are a great tiny chocolate treat for little kids who love to lick the spoon. They are also great to include in a gift basket with coffee or hot chocolate, as chocolate stirring spoons that add extra richness to the drink. If you could find inexpensive mismatched teaspoons at a second hand store that might be a beautiful non-plastic option for drink stirrers, if you are worried about plastic leaching into the hot drink.

    To make these, you simply melt some chocolate, dip the end of the teaspoon in, and let dry on a baking pan on parchment paper before wrapping in cellophane or plastic wrap and tying with a pretty twist tie, ribbon, or string.


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