Thursday, June 11, 2015

Homemade Peanut Butter Oreos

So if you don't know yet, Oreos now have a peanut butter (Reeses) flavor, and it is amazing!  Really anything with peanut butter and chocolate is going to be amazing, but when I came across the below recipe I just had to try it!  I was worried the cookies wouldn't be symmetric and make bad sandwiches, but honestly they were super easy and turned out perfect! The cookies turned out perfect and remained super soft even after a couple of days.  If you love peanut butter and chocolate as much as I do there are the perfect desert.  It makes the prefect batch to share if you have a small dinner party like we did and didn't have too many leftover to share!

Homemade Peanut Butter Oreos



  • 1/3 cup Hershey’s Special Dark unsweetened cocoa powder (you can use regular unsweetened but they won’t be as “Oreo” like)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 large egg
  • Filling

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2-3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and flour. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and both sugars. Mix in egg and vanilla and mix until smooth. Add dry ingredients and mix until combined.
  4. Scoop 2 tablespoon sized balls of dough onto the cookie sheets. You will get about 15-17 cookies. (Alternately, you can use 1 tablespoon sized balls of dough and get twice as many cookies. Baking time will be less.)
  5. Bake for 8-9 minutes until they just lose their glossy sheen. Err on the side of underdone for these cookies; they taste better that way. Let cool completely before filling and making sandwiches.
  6. To make the filling: beat butter and peanut butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix in salt, then slowly beat in powdered sugar. Add vanilla, then 2 tablespoons of cream. Add a third tablespoon of cream as needed for the consistency you want. Note: this makes a lot of frosting, more than you need. It is enough frosting to fill the 2 tablespoon sized cookies OR the 1 tablespoon sized, plus extra. Filling can be frozen in an airtight container for up to one month.
  7. Once cookies are cooled, frost half with the frosting and sandwich with the other half. The best way to do this is to place your frosting in a gallon size ziploc bag and cut off one tip. Place a very large squeeze of frosting in the center of the bottom of a cookie, then press the top cookie on top, causing the frosting to spread to the edges.
Original Recipe and Image found here

No Bake Oreo Cookie Dough Bars

It's officially mixed tennis season which gives me a wonderful excuse to make deserts for tennis.  I love making deserts for tennis because I get to bake some goodies then take them out of the door so that we aren't tempted to eat all of them!  We have some friends coming into town so I also wanted to have some goodies to share with them while they stay with us.  I actually doubled this recipe below to make a bigger batch so that we would definitely have enough.  It was super simple and quick to do since you didn't have to bake anything!  Enjoy!

No Bake Oreo Cookie Dough Bars


Oreo Crust:
  • 38 Oreo Cookies, crushed in crumbs
  • 7 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter,melted 
Cookie Dough Layer:
  • 1 Stick Unsalted Butter, softened
  • ¾ Cup Brown Sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  • 2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 (14 oz.) Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 Cups Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
Optional Toppings:
  • 2 (4oz.) Hersheys Cookies and Cream Bars, melted
  • 5-6 Oreo Cookies, crumbled
  • Cookie Dough Balls, recipe follows


  1. Oreo Crust: Line an 8x8 pan with foil. Set aside. In a bowl combine the Oreo cookie crumbs and melted butter. Stir with a fork until well combined and the mixture resembles damp sand. With your hand or the back of a glass, firmly press the Oreo mixture into the prepared pan. Place in the freezer to chill while you prepare the cookie dough layer.
  2. Cookie Dough Layer: In the same bowl you used for the Oreo crust, cream the butter for 1 minute with a hand mixer. Add in the brown sugar and beat for an additional 2 minutes on medium speed. Beat in the vanilla extract. Slowly add in the flour, alternating with the sweetened condensed milk. Stir in the chocolate chips. Reserve ½ cup of the cookie dough. Press the cookie dough on top of the prepared Oreo crust. Return to the freezer to chill for 30 minutes. Roll the remaining ½ cup of cookie dough into mini balls (it is easier and less sticky if you allow the dough to cool down a bit). Place in the freezer to firm up. Remove bars from the refrigerator and pour the melted cookies and cream bars evenly over the top of the bars. Top immediately with cookie dough balls and crushed Oreo cookies. Refrigerate for 1-3 hours. Cut into 12 squares and serve.

Original recipe and picture found here

Cookies ‘n Cream Extreme Brownies

Cookies ‘n Cream Extreme Brownies


For the Brownies:

  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/3 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 15 Oreo Cookies

For the Fluffy White Frosting:

  • 8 tablespoons vegetable shortening (Crisco)
  • 1 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup marshmallow fluff
  • 3 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar


  • About 1 1/4 cups (or more to taste) Oreo Mini Cookies
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2 teaspoons very hot water


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9x13” pan with foil and grease with butter or spray with cooking spray.
  2. Melt butter and chocolate chips in microwave until creamy and smooth. Set aside.
  3. Whisk the eggs in a large bowl. Add the sugar and salt and whisk until incorporated. Gradually whisk the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Whisk in the vanilla.
  4. Place the flour and cocoa in sifter or a wire mesh strainer. Sift directly into the batter and stir with a spatula. Pour batter into prepared pan and spread until even. Place the 15 large Oreos evenly on top and press down lightly to cover with the batter.
  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool to room temperature on the counter, then cover and let sit overnight (you can also refrigerate it overnight).
  6. Make the frosting: beat shortening and butter in a stand mixer with the paddle attached (or a hand mixer). Mix in marshmallow creme and vanilla. Slowly mix in powdered sugar. Spread frosting evenly over top of the brownies. Top evenly with mini Oreos.
  7. Make the topping: melt the butter and corn syrup in a small saucepan. Turn off the heat and stir in the chocolate chips, then stir in the water to thin. Drizzle over the top of the frosting. Chill the frosted brownies for at least 1 hour until the frosting and topping sets. Remove from pan and slice into bars. 
Original Recipe and Image Found here


Whole30 Balsamic Beef Bolognese Pasta Sauce with Zucchini Noodles

Although we aren't eating strict Whole30 right now, we tend to still do meals that are Whole30 complaint.  We will enjoy a glass of wine or desert, but we really loved how healthy our lifestyle was when we were eating Whole30.  I had a friend ask me if I would do it again so I will actually be doing another stint of Whole30!  It will be nice having the motivation of a friend doing it with me.  Joe will most likely join in for the most part so it will be fun to see how long we keep up with it this time around.  I made the below recipe a while back and never got around to blogging about it.  Since I was cooking for just 2 of us, we had a lot of pasta sauce left over so we put it in a container and froze it for a later date!  It will make for a super easy and quick meal when we are in a bind while doing Whole30!  This was one of my favorite recipes we have done so I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Balsamic Beef Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles.

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 10 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 c chopped yellow onion
  • Sea salt + cracked black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flake
  • 2 cups finely chopped mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup + 1/4 cup sulfite-free balsamic vinegar (easy to find at any grocery store)
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1-15 ounce can of plain 100% tomato sauce
  • 1 pound (about 3 medium) vine tomatoes, diced
  • Fresh basil
  • 4 zucchinis
In a large sauce pot over medium heat, add the olive oil. When it warms up, add the garlic, onions, and a bit of salt and pepper, and cook until the onions are translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the oregano, red pepper flake, and chopped mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms are soft and browning, another 5 or 6 minutes. Add the tomato paste and stir for a couple of minutes, until the mixture is well combined. Pour in the first 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar, and use it to help you scrape up any brown bits at the bottom of the pot. Let is simmer for another few minutes to cook out the vinegar tang.

Add the ground beef and use a spatula to crumble it well and to combine it with the other ingredients. Add a bit more salt and pepper and continue to cook until the beef is no longer pink. Then add the sauce, the tomatoes, and the second 1/4 cup of balsamic. Bring the pot to a boil, then lower it to a simmer and cook covered for 15 minutes longer. Salt and pepper again as needed, and top with fresh basil.

For zucchini noodles use a spiralizer to create zucchini noodles.  Saute the noodles with a dash of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste for 4 minutes or until desired softness.  Enjoy!

[Leaf Parade. Balsamic Beef Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles.]
Original recipe and image found here