Vegan Double Chocolate Black Bean Brownies

      Many people are going vegan these days for a variety of reasons.  Some people do it because they are animal rights activists, others do it because they are concerned about our planet and taking care of our natural resources, and still others do it because they think it is a healthier diet option.     Whatever your reason is for following a vegan diet, I have been curious for a long time about how good some of these vegan recipes actually are.  I figured what better way to try a vegan dish than to make a vegan dessert?!?!  A vegan diet is also known as a "plant-based" diet and it consists of giving up all meat, dairy, egg and animal products from everything you eat.     As a Survivor, I am always looking for ways to take better care of my body but I'm not sure if I could fully commit to giving up dairy and egg from my diet.  Although I currently drink only almond milk, I love eating cheese and I've always been a big fan of eggs.  I think I could eat more vegan dessert treats if … [Read more...]

Caramel Coconut And Fudge Truffles

    This past week, my husband and sons have been munching on caramel coconut and fudge cookies every single day.  I promise that I did not indulge but I definitely wanted to, if I'm being honest.  They taste delicious and are hard to resist.  I really wanted to have an excuse to buy even more of this cookie variety regularly so I thought it would be a good idea to include them in a fun and delicious recipe.  I hope you guys enjoy it as much as we did! Caramel Coconut and Fudge Truffles Yields: 1 dozen INGREDIENTS: 1 box caramel coconut and fudge cookies 4 oz. (1/2 brick) cream cheese - softened 1/4 cup caramel sauce (I used ice cream topping) 12 oz dark cocoa candy melts Optional - 1/4 teaspoon coconut extract DIRECTIONS: 1. Line a large cookie sheet with wax or parchment paper and set aside. 2. Place the cookies in a food processor and pulse into fine crumbs. Reserve 1/4 cup of the crumbs for later use and pour the remaining … [Read more...]

Apple Oats Muffins

    I couldn't believe how much sugary candy was given out on Halloween this week.  It really made me start thinking about being more careful about all the junk that the kids consume now that the holidays are right around the corner.  If I know my family, they will be bringing a lot of snacks and desserts for my sons and nephews when they come over to celebrate.  I'd rather they enjoy some more nutritious and wholesome treats.     Although I love baking, I don't like to spend a lot of time in the kitchen so I try to plan for recipes that will allow me to freeze and defrost them later so we could still enjoy them.  One of my favorite recipes to make around this time of the year is for Apple Oat Muffins.  Not only do my guys love them, but they also taste great and are perfect for enjoying for breakfast or lunch.  My boys even like to eat them as an after-school snack when they get home in the afternoon! Apple Oat Muffins … [Read more...]

Dark Chocolate Coffee Truffles @Folgers #Folgers #Ad

    If you are a longtime reader you probably know that I am obsessed with coffee!  I think that my love affair with Java began when I was a little girl and I helped my grandmother make it every morning for breakfast.  The delicious scent of it filled the entire kitchen and signaled the beginning of the day as well as great things ahead.  Ever since I can remember, I was allowed to sip from her cup and even dip my bread in it.  It is still one of my fondest memories up until this day and every single time that I drink my morning cup of Folgers coffee.     Fast forward to the present and now my sons are also taking sips from my coffee cup every so often.  They remind me so much of those stolen moments with my grandmother during my childhood.  This has also inspired me to start learning about other ways that I could incorporate my Folgers coffee into new recipes.  After all, I love its taste and it would be a dream come true … [Read more...]

Patriotic Jello Cups

    Next weekend is Memorial Day and many people forget that this special holiday is for remembering the men and women who died while serving in this country's armed forces.  Although most usually spend this day surrounded by family and friends outdoors, it's very important to be reminded of the sacrifices that these brave people have made for all of us.       There is no better way to show your patriotism than by using the colors red, white and blue in everything that you do during this weekend.  My ten year-old son loves eating jello so I knew that making a special dessert that includes his favorite dessert will be a great way to teach him about our servicemen and servicewomen.   Patriotic Jello Cups Ingredients- 2-3oz packs blue jello 2-3oz packs red jello 2-small envelopes of unflavored gelatin Whipped cream Red, white, and blue sprinkles Directions- 1. In a small pot, boil 1 cup of water and mix in two … [Read more...]

Dairy Free Blueberry Pecan Popsicles

    They are dairy-free, gluten-free, and processed sugar-free but these Blueberry Pecan Popsicles are far from taste-free! Giving up milk is hard-replacing that creaminess especially in ice cream and other milk based desserts has been a bit of a challenge. Then I discovered canned coconut milk and realized how delicious it was, it is now my go to replacement in everything from coffee to homemade whipped cream to these popsicles.     While the kids also love this popsicle recipe I made this one with the grown-ups in mind and with just 4 simple ingredients- creamy coconut milk, crunchy pecans, raw honey, and fresh blueberries...and yes they are as good as they look! These dairy free popsicles are so delicious and quite healthy- that makes for a great snack, dessert, or even breakfast treat on a hot day! Ingredients: 1 oz. can coconut milk ½ cup fresh blueberries 3 T. chopped pecans 2 T. raw honey Directions: -Wash your fresh blueberries well, … [Read more...]

Minion Cupcakes Party Recipe

    My younger son's birthday is at the end of this month and he is going to be ten years old!  I'm very excited about planning his special day for him and making it unforgettable for him and the rest of the family.       Since he loves the Minions, I thought it would be a great idea to make some Minion cupcakes for his celebration.  I've been doing a lot of research online and checking out lots of photos of the different desserts that are out there involving the Minions.     I'm so excited about how these came out and I cannot wait to replicate them for his party.  I think I'm going to have to make a whole bunch because, between my sons and nephews, there are eight boys in the family and they all have hearty appetites.  I hope you guys enjoy making them in your home as much as I did eating them! Minion Cupcakes Ingredients: Box Cake Mix Box of Twinkies Buttercream Frosting or you can use the homemade recipe … [Read more...]

No-Bake Chocolate Eclair Sandwiches #NestleTollHouse @NestleTollHouse #Giveaway #Ad

    In our home, we have special go-to desserts that we like to enjoy during the summertime.  Since it is hot and humid here in New York City, the name of the game is no-bake summer recipes that taste delicious.  NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE morsels are the perfect ingredient for these recipes because they are so yummy and very versatile.  Any treat that contains these morsels of goodness is mouth-watering as far as we are concerned.     One of my favorite desserts to make for our family are No-Bake Chocolate Eclair Sandwiches.  It's my own spin on an old-time favorite which I like to top with NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE semi-sweet mini morsels.  Chocolate mini-morsels are made with the same rich, real semi-sweet chocolate that the regular-sized morsels are but we love that they are perfect for eating right out of the bag as we are preparing our dessert.     There's also the benefit of not having to spend too much time in the kitchen. … [Read more...]

Fourth Of July No Bake Cookie Dough Balls

    This afternoon, my Aunt called me to ask what time she should be here Saturday for our annual Fourth of July barbecue.  I've been getting ready for this weekend this whole week trying to plan and prepare easy foods that I know the whole family will love.     The key is making sure that making these foods doesn't take up a lot of my time because we just started summer vacation here in New York City and the last thing I want to do is spend a lot of time in the hot kitchen.     The kids usually spend the entire day running around with the water guns and throwing water balloons at each other so they often don't even stop to grab a bite to eat.  However, as soon as they see dessert come out, they flock to it like bees to honey.     I've come up with some fun dessert ideas to celebrate Independence Day this year and one of them is for Fourth of July No Bake Cookie Dough Balls.  I'm pretty sure all the kids are going to love them because they are easy to carry around and eat … [Read more...]

Banana Split Cupcake Recipe

    As my boys are getting older, I have noticed that they prefer cupcakes over other desserts.  I think part of it is that cupcakes are so convenient to transport and eat.  Since we are constantly on-the-go, they often have to eat snacks while we are on the road.  Banana Split cupcakes are some of their favorites because they contain fresh strawberries and my sons love them.     In the past, I have served cupcakes at family dinner parties and events at my kids' school.  This particular recipe is reserved for special events because these cupcakes are so decadent and sophisticated.  Every single one of these is made from scratch and you can taste it as soon as you take the first bite. Chocolate Cake 1/4 Cup of unsalted butter ( room temp ) 1 Cup of sugar 1 Cup of chocolate chips 2 Large eggs ( room temperature ) 2 Large egg yolks ( room temperature ) 1/2 Cup of vegetable oil 2 Teaspoon of vanilla extract 1/3 Cup of sour cream 1 Cup of flour 1/2 Teaspoon of  tea … [Read more...]