Tag Archives: Cream cheese

Lemon-Lover’s Cupcakes

10 Aug

School starts in 2 weeks. I am in denial. I’ll have two of my kiddos going this year – excited, but sad too! We are squeezing every last drop out of our summer  break and trying to cram in all the last bits of fun and freedom – including doing a little cupcake decorating. Does it count as decorating if you eat most of the toppings before they make it to the actual cupcake? If you love lemon (hence the name) you will love, love these babies. photo 1

 

Ingredients:

1 medium sized lemon

1 pkg plain yellow or vanilla cake mix

1 (3.4 oz) pkg lemon instant pudding

1 (6 oz, 3/4 cup) container lemon yogurt

3/4 cup water

1/2 cup vegetable oil

4 large eggs

Grease and dust two 9″ round cake pans, or line cupcake cups with paper liners.

Rinse lemon and pat dry. Grate enough zest to measure 2 tsp. Set 1 tsp of zest aside for frosting. Cut lemon in half and squeeze out the juice – you will need 1 Tbsp plus 2 tsp. Set 2 tsp of lemon juice aside for frosting.

Place cake mix, pudding mix, yogurt, water, oil, eggs, 1 tsp lemon zest, and 1 Tbsp lemon juice in a large mixing bowl and beat until well blended. Divide the batter between cake pan, or fill cupcake liners with 1/4 cup of batter. Bake at 350^F for 25-30 minutes for cakes or 20-25 minutes for cupcakes. Bake until golden brown and the top springs back when lightly pressed with a finger. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:

4 oz cream cheese, at room temperature

8 Tbsp butter, at room temperature

4 cups powdered sugar, sifted

1 tsp lemon zest

2 tsp lemon juice

Place the cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl and beat until creamy. Add 2 cups of powdered sugar, 1 tsp lemon zest, and 2 tsp lemon juice. Beat until will combined. Add 1 1/2 cups of the remaining powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Continue to add powdered sugar until desired consistency is reached.

 

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Sour Cream Chocolate Cake

10 Jul

The little man of our house turned one last month. Most of the time, I try to pick cakes that have white frosting so that I can color it for decorating. I finally got to do a chocolate cake! I had almost as much fun eating it as I did decorating it…almost.

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Ingredients:

Cake:

1 pkg chocolate cake mix with pudding

1 cup sour cream

3/4 cup water

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 tsp vanilla

3 large eggs

Grease and dust two 9″ round cake pans. *Tip* Dust with cake mix instead of flour – you don’t get stuck with the white residue on the edges of your cake. Set pans aside.

Combine cake mix, sour cream, water, oil, vanilla, and eggs in a large mixing bowl and beat until all ingredients are incorporated. Divide the cake batter evenly between the 2 prepared cake pans. Place pans in the oven, side by side, and bake at 350^F for 28-32 minutes, until they spring back when lightly pressed with a finger. Let cool for 5 minutes, then remove cakes from the pans and allow to cool completely before frosting.

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:

8 Tbsp butter, at room temperature

4 oz cream cheese, at room temperature

1/3 cup cocoa powder

3 cups powdered sugar

2 tsp vanilla

Beat together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add cocoa powder and powdered sugar, a bit at a time, beating until well incorporated. Add vanilla and beat until frosting is fluffy.

 

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Baked Spaghetti with Cream Cheese

12 May

Happy Mother’s Day!!! How I love being a mom – it is seriously the best. I can’t imagine life without my four little beans! They are crazy, messy, and can never find their shoes when we need them; but I am addicted their smiles, their hugs, their laughter…they are my little friends who go everywhere with me and I cannot express the joy I find in them.

And I really love having a mom. 🙂 I hope I can be half as successful as she is when it comes to the unselfish way she gives of her time and energy for others. Love you, Mom!!!

This is kind of like the ‘mother’ of all spaghetti. 😉 A little (or a lot!) of extra love thrown in!!!

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Ingredients

8 ounces uncooked spaghetti
1 pound ground beef
1 large can spaghetti sauce (26.5 ounces)
1 tablespoon butter
½ cup chopped green peppers (I usually omit or substitute red peppers)
cup chopped onions
8 ounces cream cheese
2 tablespoons milk
Fresh grated Parmesan cheese
French-fried onions (small can)

Directions

Cook spaghetti according to directions on the package. Cook to al dente, drain and set aside. Brown ground beef. Drain excess grease. Add spaghetti sauce to skillet and heat. Combine onions, peppers and butter in small glass bowl. Cover and microwave 4 minutes on HIGH until soft. Add cream cheese and milk to vegetables and stir well. (If cream cheese is not soft, nuke it for 20-30 seconds to make it easy to spread.) Using a 12 x 8-inch baking dish (or something close), assemble in the following order: thin layer of spaghetti sauce, cooked spaghetti, cream cheese/vegetable mixture, remaining spaghetti sauce, parmesan cheese (amount subject to your own taste) Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Top with french-fried onions and continue baking 5 more minutes. (This is the secret ingredient–don’t let them burn.)

Original recipe: http://www.keyingredient.com/recipes/944735043/baked-spaghetti-with-cream-cheese/

Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes

22 Apr

We had a little fun with our Easter cupcakes yesterday! You can’t go wrong with a strawberry cheesecake cupcake base; add a little surprise center, and top with a festive Peep (which I really hate, but look darn cute sitting on their little cupcake-birdie nest!). The kids had fun putting the eggs on, and I had fun eating all the of the cupcake centers that I had to scoop out to make the nest. 🙂 Win, win!!!

This recipe is really so easy – just a boxed cake mix with a make-over. But no one would guess it’s from a box! The star ingredient being real-life strawberries, which really makes the flavor fresh and Spring-y. I frosted them with Buttercream Frosting, but my neighbor has a spectacular strawberry frosting that I must steal and try with these…

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Ingredients:

Cupcakes:

1 (18.25 oz) plain white cake mix

1 (3 oz) pkg strawberry gelatin

4 Tbsp flour

1 cup milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup crushed fresh strawberries

3 large eggs

Filling:

1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, at room temperature

1/3 cup sugar

1 large egg

Preheat oven to 350^F. Make cupcake batter by combining all ingredients and mixing until completely incorporated. Make filling by doing the same. Spoon or scoop about 1/4 cup of cupcake batter into prepared cupcake cups, filling it to 2/3 full. Spoon a generous Tbsp of the cheesecake filling over each cupcake. Place cupcake pan on the center rack of the oven and bake until tops spring back when lightly pressed with a finger – about 20-25 minutes. Cool 15 minutes or longer before frosting.

For Easter Nests:

Scoop out a tsp size hole in the middle of each cupcake and fill with sprinkles. Top with a candy egg. 

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Swirl frosting around egg, like a nest, and top with a Peep.

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Cream Cheese Berry Roulade

14 Apr

I have about 20 some-odd recipes sitting in my drafts…I am falling so behind! But I am in the process of making a fabulous Prom dress for my neighbor’s daughter. It is going to be so pretty (I’ll have to sneak in a few pictures)! But I am learning a lot on this project, and am finding that learning a lot requires making a lot of mistakes. I almost cried when I got the bodice all put together only to find that I got a section caught in the serger and cut a nice little hole in the very delicate chiffon. After a sleepless night trying to figure out how to fix it, I finally concluded that I couldn’t fix it and would have to replace the panel. It was a grand mistake…painfully grand. But I have been ever careful of my serger edge ever since. Yay for me.

Thank goodness I had a little slice of this heaven sitting in my fridge so I could wash the bitterness of a careless mistake down with a truly sweet treat. Delicious beyond words. So easy. Don’t skip the whipped topping. And don’t cut holes in Prom dresses.

P.S> The whipped topping can also be used for a great fruit dip!!!

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Ingredients:

2 packages Crescent Rolls
8oz Cream Cheese
2 tbsp Brown Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
1/2 cup Fruit Preserves (strawberry, blackberry…I used plum!)
Fresh Strawberries
Fresh or Frozen Blueberries
1 Lemon
Confectioners Sugar
1 egg

Lay out the crescent rolls and press seams together. Mix cream cheese with brown sugar and vanilla until soft. Spread inside crescent rolls. Then spread preserves on top. Sprinkle blueberries and strawberries on top. Pull edges of crescent rolls over. Egg wash pastry. Bake at 375 for 20 mins. In separate bowl mix juice and zest of a lemon with confectioners sugar until it becomes an icing. Garnish with strawberries.

Whipped Topping:

  • 1 large (5.1 oz) instant vanilla pudding
  • 32 oz. container vanilla yogurt
  • 8 oz. container Cool Whip
  • 1 pkg. frozen strawberries

Mix together pudding mix and yogurt. Fold in whip cream. Fold in strawberries.

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French Toast Rolls

20 Mar

Soccer has started. This means that I will be making breakfast for dinner many, many, many times during the next couple of months. Here is an awesome variation of french toast! My kids, of course, still had to add syrup, but the filling was good enough for me. Get creative with what you stuff with. 🙂 I used different combos: raspberries and cream cheese, Nutella and raspberries, and Nutella and cream cheese. My favorite was the Nutella and cream cheese!

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Ingredients

 

  • 8 slices white sandwich bread
  • softened cream cheese, diced raspberries, Nutella (or whatever fits your fancy! – bananas, strawberries, peaches…)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 heaping teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • butter, for greasing the pan

 

  1. Cut the crust from each slice of bread and flatten it out with a rolling pin.
  2. Place about 1-2 teaspoons of your chosen filling 1 inch from one end of the bread in a strip. Roll the bread up tightly and repeat with the remaining pieces of bread.
  3. In a shallow bowl whisk the eggs and milk until well combined.
  4. In a separate shallow bowl mix the sugar with the cinnamon.
  5. Heat a skillet set over medium heat and melt a tablespoon of butter.
  6. Dip each bread roll in the egg mixture coating well and then place them in the pan seam side down. Cook in batches until golden brown, turning them to cook and brown on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Add butter to the pan as needed.
  7. Add cooked rolls immediately from the pan to the cinnamon sugar and roll until completely covered in sugar.

 

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Original recipe: http://www.the-girl-who-ate-everything.com/2013/05/french-toast-roll-ups.html

 

Candy Apple Pie

15 Mar

Happy Pi Day! I had a friend suggest that since this month is 3/14, it should really technically be Pi Month…I do not disagreed.

My husband’s work decided to celebrate Pi Day with, well, a pie party – naturally. Everyone was supposed to bring a pie to share. He sent me a text: “I want to win the ‘this is not a competition’ competition.” Challenge accepted!!! After the verdict was in, I asked how we fared compared to the other pies and he declared ours the unofficial winner, because it was the only one that people kept coming up for seconds of. I actually haven’t even tasted this pie because, even though I requested that he save me a piece, all that came home was an empty pie tin! But, there are three good reasons why I know it must taste pretty darn good. One: It smelled incredible while baking. Two: Mine was the only pie to be completely devoured. Three: My husband ate an entire slice (this is the crowning glory because he doesn’t really like pie in general, and I have never seen him voluntarily eat apple pie). Sounds like a winner to me. Hopefully I have an excuse to make it again soon because I would really like to test my theory. 😉

**UPDATE**

I can now add one more reason to why I know this pie tastes good. Four: I got to taste it! 🙂 I actually made two  pies, one for Hubby’s work, and one for my sweet neighbor who’s family has had a rough week. I mentioned to her that I hoped it tasted good since it was a new recipe, so, when she returned my pie tin today, she included a slice for me to taste-test. Better late than never! And now I know for a fact that this pie is delicious. It is a caramel candied apple. Yum!!

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Ingredients:

Crust:
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup caramel ice cream topping
1 cup chopped pecans

Apple Filling:
5 Granny Smith apples (peeled, cored, sliced very thin) *Or any firm apple that holds up well during baking (I used Honeycrisp)
5 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Cream Cheese Topping:

8 oz. cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar
Topping:
3/4 cup heavy cream, whipped
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup caramel ice cream topping
1/4 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the crumbs, sugar, cinnamon and melted butter. Mix well and press into a 10-inch pie plate and up the sides. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes until golden in color. Remove pie shell from oven and cool completely. Pour caramel into pie shell and sprinkle with 1 cup of chopped pecans. Refrigerate pie shell while making apple filling.

3. In a large (12-inch) skilet over medium heat, melt butter and add brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Stir with a wooden spoon. Add apples and stir. Cook over medium to medium-high heat for 15 to 20 minutes until apples are softened and tender. Let cool for 10 minutes and pour into pie shell. Reduce oven to 350 degrees F.

4. In a medium bowl, using a hand-held mixer on low speed, combine cream cheese and sugar for about 1 minute until smooth. Add egg, lemon juice and vanilla and beat for 1 minute or until fully blended. Pour over apple filling in pie shell. Bake for 30 minutes until an inserted knife comes out clean. Remove pie from oven and let cool. Refrigerate for 4 hours. Let stand outside the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

5. Top with whipped cream, caramel and pecans, and swirl with a knife. Slice and serve.

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Original recipe: http://www.thekitchn.com/-best-pie-bakeoff-2008-entry-1-10-69632

Crockpot Spaghetti and Chicken

8 Feb

The Olympics have started! I get seriously sucked into the Olympic Games. I used to only care about the figure skating (still my favorite part…not gonna lie). The rest was uber boring to my teeny-bopper mind – but something clicked awhile back. It was probably 2002 – when the Olympics actually came to my backyard. I gained a greater appreciation for all the sports and now I really love watching every second I can. This also means that I’m watching the Olympics when I should be cooking dinner. Enter Crockpot. Sponsored by the mom’s who don’t feel like doing more than dumping dinner in a pot and letting it magically cook itself.

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Ingredients

3 lb. chicken pieces

1 (2/3 oz.) pkg. Italian salad dressing mix

4 tbsp. melted butter

1 small onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, chopped

1 (10 1/2 oz.) can cream of chicken soup

8 oz. cream cheese

1/2 cup chicken broth

1 lb. of spaghetti

Place chicken pieces in crock pot and sprinkle Italian seasoning over chicken. Sprinkle with 2 tbsp. melted butter. Cook on low for 4-6 hours. Melt 2 tbsp. butter in a saucepan and sauté onion and garlic. Add Cream of Chicken Soup, cream cheese, and chicken broth. Stir until smooth. Add this mixture to crockpot and cook on low for an additional hour. Prepare spaghetti according to package directions.

Homemade Oreos

4 Nov

Every ‘homemade’ Oreo recipe I’ve seen is actually made from a boxed cake mix. I never have boxed cake mixes – it’s just not something I keep stocked in my pantry. Which may or may not have something to do with a story someone once told me about hers gong rancid and everyone getting sick from it…that and I think it’s almost as easy to just make a cake from scratch. And I most always have the ingredients to make a cake from scratch! And of course it tastes better, because that is the unspoken rule of ‘homemade.’

If you’re in the mood for a smack in the face of chocolatey richness, go make a batch of these babies. And have a glass of milk handy! So good.

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Ingredients:

Cookies-

1 cup butter, softened

1 cup sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

1 1/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder

1 3/4 cups flour

2 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 350^F. In a large bowl, cream together butter, and both sugars until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, beating well. Combine cocoa, flour, and baking soda. Gradually mix into creamed mixture. Create rounded balls of dough – about 1 Tbsp each (keep them fairly small for best results). Place on greased cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes until puffy but still soft. Allow cookies to cook on baking sheet for 5 minutes before moving to wire rack or wax paper to cool completely. When completely cooked, frost will cream filling.

Cream Filling-

3/4 cup heavy whipping cream

4 oz (1/2 pkg) cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup sugar

pinch of salt

1/2 tsp vanilla

In a small bowl, beat whipping cream until stiff peaks form; set aside. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, salt, and vanilla. Beat until smooth, then fold into whipped cream.

 

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Chocolate Eclair Cake

19 Oct

I’ve been waiting, and waiting for an excuse to make this Chocolate Eclair Cake. I finally had a get together last night – a ‘bring a treat to share’ get together, with lots of ladies making crafty things late into the night, and needing a little sugary kick to keep them going. YES. I’ve always heard that eclairs are temperamental and if you don’t have your kitchen at the right temperature, or cook the dough just right, they won’t turn out (true? or old wives tale?). Hence the reason why I’ve never made eclairs. That being said, reading through this recipe I just couldn’t find a way to mess it up. So, I took a gamble, and ended up with one tasty treat.

I did learn an important lesson in making eclairs – or eclair cakes anyways. While preparing your ingredients, if an egg rolls off of the counter and you try to stop its decent by sticking out your leg and pushing said egg against the cabinet, one of two things is going to happen. One: the egg is going to break and get all over your pants, the cabinet, and the floor. Two: the egg is going to break and get all over your pants, the cabinet, and the floor. Either way, I think you’re better off just letting the darn thing fall. You will have lost an egg and will have to live with the guilt of having done nothing to save it, but at least you won’t have to change your clothes.

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Ingredients

 

Crust:

 

    • 1 cup water
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1 cup all-purpose flour
    • 4 large eggs

 

Filling:

 

    • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
    • 1 large box (5.1 ounces) vanilla instant pudding
    • 3 cups milk

 

Topping:

 

  • whipped cream
  • chocolate syrup

 

Instructions

 

  1. Instructions:
  2. Preheat oven to 400. Lightly grease a 9″X13″ glass baking pan.
  3. For the Eclair Crust: In a medium saucepan, melt butter in water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Stir in flour. Mix in one egg at a time, mixing completely before adding another egg. Spread mixture into pan, covering the bottom and sides evenly. Mixture will be very wet. *If the sides of your pan are too greased you won’t be able to get the mixture to stay up the sides so make sure to just lightly grease.
  4. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until golden brown. You may want to check it occasionally-you don’t want to overcook the crust, it will ruin the cake! Remove from oven and let cool (don’t touch or push bubbles down).
  5. For the Filling: Whip cream cheese in a medium bowl. In separate bowl make vanilla pudding by beating the pudding mix and the milk for 3 minutes and put in the fridge until set. Make sure pudding is thick before mixing in with cream cheese. Slowly add pudding to cream cheese, mixing until there are no lumps. Let cool in fridge.When the crust is completely cooled, pour filling in. Top with layer of whipped cream, however thick you want it and serve with a drizzle chocolate syrup.

Original recipe found here: http://www.the-girl-who-ate-everything.com/2009/06/chocolate-eclair-cake.html

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