Recipes

Gingerbread Cupcakes

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Gingerbread is a Holiday classic & we just can’t get enough.
We are still on a total gingerbread kick after baking batch after batch of our Gingerbread Cookies this holiday season.
The Gingerbread cookies were a hit and we ended up making a lot more than we expected since friends & family kept requesting them! They were definitely our star holiday cookie this year.

We couldn’t let our gingerbread addiction end with just cookies this year though, so we decided to make Gingerbread Cupcakes!

These really are the perfect Winter cupcake. Super moist spiced cupcakes, with deliciously creamy cinnamon spiced cream-cheese icing. Mmmm. And nothing tastes more like Winter than the brilliant combo of ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and molasses!

If you are a Gingerbread lover, you have gotta try these cupcakes. The combo of the ginger-spiced cake with the sweet & tangy cinnamon cream cheese icing go together like peanut butter + jelly. 😉

These are fairly simple cupcakes to make and I love them because there are plenty of different adjustments you can make to alter the taste of the cupcakes to your liking:

If your not into the cinnamon cream cheese icing, try white chocolate frosting, chocolate frosting or even plain vanilla frosting. You could even leave the icing off completely and enjoy them as muffins.

You can alter the spices as you wish. If you’re not a fan of a certain spice, put a bit less/or omit it completely and up the quantity of a spice of your choice.

Instead of the little gingerbread men cupcake toppers, you can use sprinkles or if you want to get real fancy – bake a batch of gingerbread cookies, use a fairly small gingerbread man cutout and stick the gingerbread man cookie on top of the icing.

We had lots of fun baking & decorating these cupcakes and they really are every bit as tasty as they are cute.
We hope everyone had a wonderful New Year, and hope you enjoy this recipe!

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How cute are these Gingerbread Men Cupcake Cups & Decor?!
The cups and little gingerbread toppers are both Wilton brand & can be found at Michaels & certain grocery stores.
You can also buy them online here.

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Gingerbread Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe
{recipe slightly adapted from The Cupcake Diaries}
{yield: approx. 20 cupcakes}

Ingredients:
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons + 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups molasses
1 cup hot water

Frosting Ingredients:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
3-4 cups icing sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
2 teaspoons milk

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line muffin pans with cupcake liners, or spray pans with non-stick cooking spray if you’re not using baking cups.
In a large bowl, sift together all (flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, salt) of the dry ingredients EXCEPT for the brown sugar. Lightly whisk the ingredients to combine them slightly than set the bowl aside.

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter & brown sugar for a few minutes until light & fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time and mix slowly after each addition. Add the molasses and mix until well combined. Next add one third of the dry ingredients and one third of the cup of water and mix thoroughly. Repeat this step, scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add the last third, starting with the dry ingredients than add the last third of the water and mix until well combined.

Scoop the batter evenly in the cupcake liners. Bake for 16-19 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer pans to a wire rack to cool completely.

Frosting:

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix all ingredients (except for the milk) together until well combined. To help the icing come together and to make it a bit smoother/creamier, add 2 teaspoons of milk. Continue mixing until the icing is to your preference.

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Natasha & Laura xo

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Recipes

Strawberry & White Chocolate Muffins

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 If you have fresh strawberries in the house, you must make these Strawberry & White Chocolate Muffins!
We’ve been on a muffin kick lately, and these muffins were amazingly tasty.
The strawberries mix perfectly with the white chocolate creating a luscious, fresh flavour.
I know the word ‘moist’ is so overused when it comes to baking, but seriously.. these muffins are SO moist & fluffy! (Due in part to the olive oil, & yogurt used).

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I used my SOCKERKAKA Baking Cups from IKEA for the first time on half of the batch to see how they would turn out.
SOCKERKAKA Baking Cups are rubber silicone baking cups that are dishwasher, and oven safe.

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I really liked how the muffins in the silicone cups turned out! They had a cute oblong shape to them, and the bottom of the muffins came out with a cute little flower design.
I had no issues with getting the muffins out of the cups – They slid right out of the cups without breaking.
I did have to cook the muffins in the silicone cups a tad longer, as the cups held more batter than the muffin pan cups.
All in all, after first use, I enjoy them & would recommend them!

(I’m interested to see what frosted cupcakes would look like using the silicone cups! I’ll be baking some soon & posting an update). 🙂

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Strawberry & White Chocolate Muffins

Ingredients:
(yield: 12 muffins)
2 cups flour
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup Greek Yogurt
1/3 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups fresh strawberries, washed & chopped
1/2 cup white chocolate chips

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray, or line pan with muffin cups.
In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, salt) together; set aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs together until combined. Add the rest of the wet ingredients (yogurt, oil & vanilla) & mix together.

2. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry & mix altogether using a spatula. Fold in the berries & the chocolate chips.
Using a large scoop, divide the batter evenly among the 12 muffin cups. There should be enough batter to fill each cup nearly full.
Bake approx. 20 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean.
Let muffins cool for 5-9 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Note: Muffins stay fresh for up to 4 days covered at room temperature.

Enjoy!
Xo Natasha

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Recipes

Very Berry Muffins

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Oh muffins, how I adore you.

Today we are sharing a quick & tasty Berry Muffin recipe!
These muffins taste heavenly paired with a cup of tea, & are also perfect to grab for breakfast on those busy mornings.

This is one of those recipes where you must lick the batter spoon! Trust me. The batter is almost too good to be true.

I used strawberries & blackberries for these muffins because they were what I had on hand, but you can use whichever berries you prefer. 🙂

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Very Berry Muffins Recipe
(slightly adapted from Martha Stewart)

Ingredients:
(yield: approx. 18 muffins)

2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons Greek yogurt
2 cups fresh berries, mixed (I used blackberries & strawberries)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
    In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder & salt together; set aside. Rinse & strain the berries. Sprinkle a few spoonfuls of the flour mixture over the berries making sure all the berries get coated with flour. Pour any excess flour back into the original bowl. (Sprinkling the berries with the flour mixture will help the berries to not sink to the bottom of the muffins).

    2. Cream together the softened butter, & sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in the eggs, one at a time. Than the vanilla extract. Next stir in the flour mixture, 1 cup at a time until the batter becomes thick & hard to stir. Stir in the milk and yogurt. Lastly, gently fold the berries into the batter.

    3. Spoon the batter into prepared baking cups. Fill the cups 2/3 full. Bake for 25 – 27 minutes, or until the edges begin to brown slightly.

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Enjoy!
Natasha xo

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Dreamin’ of Donuts

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Today we felt ambitious – we decided to go a bit donut crazy.
We have made regular sized donuts before but after seeing a bunch of adorable mini-donut recipes on Pinterest, we just had to make a batch..
So we ran out and bought some new donut pans, and got to baking!

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Both the mini’s and regular sized donuts turned out delicious!
Both recipes basically use the same ingredients (mostly consisting of nutmeg, cinnamon, butter, sugar, & flour), so they taste similar except that the mini’s have pretty sprinkles on the top with a confectioner’s sugar glaze, and the regular size have a light cinnamon-sugar topping!

The mini’s and regular sized donuts are both super easy to make, and they are both baked in the oven which make them healthier than deep-fried donuts.

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Itsy Bitsy Mini Donut Recipe:

Dry ingredients:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Wet ingredients:
1/2 cup milk (we used almond milk)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar (or white vinegar)
1 egg
4 tablespoon butter
For the icing:
1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
1 tablespoon milk (we used almond milk)
pretty sprinkles to decorate! 🙂Directions:

1.  Preheat your oven to 350 F. Spray donut pan lightly with non-stick cooking spray.
2.  In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients.
3.  In a small pot, mix together the wet ingredients.  Heat on the stove top on low heat and stir until ingredients are blended/butter is melted.
4.  Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and lightly mix until just blended. Do not over mix.

5.  Place a teaspoon of batter into each mold of the mini donut pan. The batter is sticky – use your finger to spread the batter evenly into the donut mold. The batter will rise quite a bit so only fill each section about halfway / 3/4 full.

6.  Bake for 10-12 minutes.  Tip and shake baked donuts onto wire cooling rack and they should just pop right out. Repeat until the batter is done. (We ended up with 36!)

7.  To make your glaze – mix the icing sugar & milk together in a small bowl.
Once the donuts have cooled off a bit, dip each one in the glaze and then into your bowl of sprinkles. (You may need a toothpick to remove some of the sprinkles that fall in the center hole of the donut.) Place on pretty plate, admire, eat & enjoy! 🙂

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Cinnamon Baked Donuts
yield: 16 donuts

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

For the Topping:

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray the donut pan with non-stick cooking spray.

2. Into a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, melted butter, and vanilla.
Stir the wet mixture into the dry ingredients until just combined.

3. Spoon the batter into the baking pans, filling each one a little more than three-quarters full. Bake for 17 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then tap the doughnuts out onto a sheet pan.

For the topping:

4. Mix the sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. Dip the donuts into the sugar mix, either on one side or both.

Enjoy!

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Hope you guys like these recipes as much as we do!
Laura & Natasha
xo

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Skinny Blueberry Oat Breakfast Muffins

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Oh, do I have a treat for all you lovely bakers today… 🙂

I’ve been experimenting with different types of healthy (healthy being the keyword here) breakfast muffins over the past few days and have finally found a recipe that is not only healthy for you, but also extremely tasty! I know, I know.. it’s hard to believe that something so nummy would be good for you, but believe me, these scrumptious blueberry oat mini muffins are!

Muffins are such an easy choice for a ‘breakfast on the go’ when you’re in a rush in the morning but the reality is, most store-bought muffins are filled with sugars and really have no essential nutrients/health benefits.
Look no further! These little bad boys are filled with all kinds of goodness – banana, blueberries, oats, whole wheat flour, olive oil, & walnuts.

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You can really taste the bananas and blueberries in these muffins – I think the bananas is the key to their goodness! And on top of being healthy and delicious, these muffins are also super easy to make. 10 minutes is all you need!

Note:
This batter does NOT rise very much at all, so make sure you put a good amount of batter into each cup. This recipe makes 18 smaller-sized muffins. You can use standard size cupcake liners, and fill them with approx. 2 heaping tablespoons of batter each. (I used an ice-cream scooper)

Ingredients:
(yield: 16-18 small muffins)
2 ripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup almond milk (or soy milk, or low fat organic milk)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup unrefined sugar
1 egg
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 3/4 cup oats
pinch of cinnamon
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 – 1 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup walnuts, chopped

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line muffin pans with paper muffin cups.

2. In a medium bowl combine bananas, milk, oil, sugar and the egg. Mix until just combined – do not overmix. In a separate small bowl – whisk together the flour, oats, cinnamon, and baking powder. Pour the dry mix into the banana mix, and whisk until evenly combined. Fold in the blueberries and walnuts.

3. Spoon approx. 2 tablespoons of batter into each muffin cup. Bake for 25 minutes or until tester comes out clean.

4. Make sure to remove the muffins immediately after they are done in the oven. Transfer the muffins to a wire rack and let cool.

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Happy Baking!
Natasha xo

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Zucchini Cookies

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Since I had 2 small zucchini’s leftover after baking zucchini muffins the other day, I decided to bake some zucchini cookies! (even though I’ve been dying to make some pumpkin desserts but since it’s only August I have decided to wait until… at least September 1st. 😉 ) Zucchini will have to do in the meantime.

I’ve made these cookies before and they are normally gone by the next day. They are soo tasty. They taste more like a spice-cake and have a cake-like consistency.

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NOTE: You can also use this recipe to make the most delicious mini zucchini cake muffins! All you have to do is spray/grease the muffin pans, and drop about 2 tablespoons worth of batter into each well. You will end up with the moistest zucchini cake muffins. 🙂

Ingredients:
(makes 24-30 cookies)

1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup of finely grated zucchini – cut the ends off, and grate zucchini on the large holes of a box grater, afterwards transfer grated zucchini to a cutting board, and chop
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup finely chopped pecans

For the Glaze:

1 cup icing sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions: 

1. Preheat oven to 370F. Spray 2 baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer (fitted with the paddle attachment) or with an electric hand mixer – beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Slowly beat in egg, zucchini, lemon zest and vanilla.

3. In a medium bowl mix together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon & salt. Stir flour mixture into wet ingredients until just combined. Fold in pecans.

4. Use a medium cookie scoop (1 ½ tablespoons) drop dough onto cookie sheets, making sure to leave a few inches in between cookies. Note: These cookies spread quite a lot, don’t worry!

5. Bake in preheated oven for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove cookies from pans and transfer to wire racks to cool.

6. While cookies are still warm, use your favorite cookie cutter to create perfectly shaped cookies. I just used a good ole circle cutout. Note: You don’t have to do this step.. the cookies are fine on their own. This is just to make them look prettier as they will be quite large!

6. Make the glaze by mixing together the confectioners’ sugar, lemon juice and vanilla extract. Lightly drizzle the glaze over cooled cookies.

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Enjoy! 
Natasha xo

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Zucchini Muffins

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I still remember the first time I ever tried a zucchini muffin…
I was 16 and visiting my Nonna & Nonno in Ontario during the summer, and my Great Aunt made the most delicious homemade zucchini muffins with zucchini’s from her own garden! From the first bite… I was in love. 😉
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I know they don’t sound or look all that appetizing but you just have to forget about the vegetable part and enjoy! This recipe has a nice mix of spices to give it that spice-cake flavor which goes perfectly with zucchini. If you like carrot cakes, you will definitely like these… and the best part is that this recipe is super simple (no electric mixer involved!) & not to mention, healthier than most muffins/cupcakes.

Try pairing these muffins with tea (my favorite) or grab one in the morning on your way out the door!
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Ingredients:
makes 24 muffins

Note: I used large baking cups, but you can also just pour the batter right into the muffin pan. Just remember to spray/grease the pans first.

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups of grated zucchini (about 3 to 4 medium zucchini) Cut the ends off, and grate zucchinis on the large holes of a box grater.

    Directions:

    1. Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange two racks so that the oven is divided into thirds. Line 2 (12-well) muffin pans with paper liners. Set aside.

    2. Place the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg in a medium bowl and whisk well to break up any lumps. Set aside.

    3. Place the eggs, sugars, oil, and vanilla in a large bowl and whisk until the eggs are broken up and the mixture is thoroughly combined. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the flour mixture until just combined. Than fold in the zucchini until evenly mixed.

    4. Fill the muffin cups about two-thirds of the way full.  Bake, rotating the muffin pans from front to back and top to bottom halfway through the cooking time, until the muffins are browned and a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes.

    5. Let the pans cool on wire racks for 5 minutes, than transfer the muffins from the pans and allow to cool completely.

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    Enjoy!

  • Natasha xo
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