Slow Cooker Peanut Butter Brownies

Slow Cooker Peanut Butter Brownies | RevamperateWe made it to another Monday, guys! I begin my move in a week, so it’s crunch time in this house. The real tricky part is my cats cannot be trusted around boxes so every time I pack a box, I have to quickly store it somewhere they can’t destroy it. Our office is the moving battleground right now, and honestly, I can’t wait for next week when I can start actually doing the MOVING. Ya know?

Anyway, I wanted to share these awesome slow cooker peanut butter brownies that I made for RecipeChatter! They are incredibly soft and chewy and I guarantee no one will ever believe you made them in a Crock Pot. Head over the RecipeChatter website for the recipe and you’re sure to love them! Bonus: no oven needed. 

Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Cupcakes

Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Cupcakes | Revamperate Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Cupcakes | RevamperateI started a new job a few weeks ago, which is always a huge adjustment. It was my new coworker’s birthday recently, and since she’s been SO nice and welcoming to me, I wanted to make her a batch of cupcakes to celebrate. After all, baking is basically how I make friends. 

I’ve made salted caramel cupcakes before but I felt that they were overly sweet, so I decided to take a slightly different approach this time with a dark chocolate cupcake base. Of course, dark chocolate is rich enough on it’s own that I didn’t want to overdo it on the frosting, so I kept it on the lighter side. You’re probably sitting there thinking, “how do you make caramel frosting LIGHT?” Honestly, you just add a little less caramel and as long as you beat the butter until it’s super fluffy, you don’t need to add as much sugar, which really helps tone down the flavor. Since you’re getting extra sweetness from the caramel, you don’t need the full amount of powdered sugar as a standard vanilla buttercream

All together and topped with some caramel and course salt, these dark chocolate salted caramel cupcakes are a total HIT in my book. In fact, I think these chocolate cupcakes will go done as one of my favorites of all time because they baked so perfectly! 

Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Cupcakes | Revamperate Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Cupcakes | RevamperateFor the cupcakes (makes 12 cupcakes): 

  • 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate cocoa powder (I use Hershey’s Special Dark)
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup hot water

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.

In one bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. In another, mix together the buttermilk and hot water. 

Cream the softened butter and sugar until smooth. Add the egg and vanilla and mix for about 30 seconds. Slowly add the dry ingredients, alternating with the liquid mixture until completely combined and the batter is smooth.

Distribute the batter among the lined cupcake cavities and bake for about 18 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. 

Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Cupcakes | Revamperate Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Cupcakes | RevamperateFor the salted caramel buttercream:

  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt (if not using salted caramel)
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup caramel sauce (homemade or store bought, salted is optional)
  • Course salt, optional (for topping)

You can use a salted or regular caramel sauce and just add a little salt to the frosting if you’re using regular sauce. Also, if you click the link above for homemade caramel sauce, you can follow my super simple recipe if you prefer to make your own rather than buy it at the store. 

In your mixing bowl fitted with a paddle attachment, whip the butter on medium speed for about 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract,  salt and heavy cream and mix to combine. On medium-high speed, continue whipping the frosting for about 5 more minutes. Add in caramel sauce and mix until just combined.

Pipe the frosting onto cooled cupcakes (psst…you can also fill your cupcakes with caramel if you want!) and top with some additional caramel sauce and course salt. When you bite into one, it’s the perfect combination of sweet, rich and salty. Basically, it’s a match made in heaven. Enjoy!

Pretzel Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies

Pretzel Chocolate Chip Shortbread | Revamperate Pretzel Chocolate Chip Shortbread | RevamperateHey guys! It’s been a whirlwind lately, and I decided to start cutting back on weekly posts for a while so that I can finally catch my breath. I just started a new job and we’re in the midst of apartment hunting, which has turned out to be incredibly stressful (of course). Because I’m a total routine-lover and I’ve lived in the same apartment for almost five years (only the second home I’ve ever had), just the idea of moving causes me great anxiety. As much as it sucks, my health is telling me to cut back for a couple weeks and catch up on the rest I never let myself have. 

Now, let’s talk about shortbread! Shortbread is beautiful because it’s so simple yet delicious. You can make it with so few ingredients but add whatever you want to it, and then cut it in all different ways. It’s probably the most versatile and most underrated cookie. 

Can you tell I like shortbread?

I mean, why wouldn’t I?! It’s like 60% butter.

Well, I like it even better when there’s pretzels and chocolate in it. Obviously. If you’re like me and love the salty and sweet combination, then this recipe will be a good one for you! These pretzel and chocolate chip shortbread cookies are perfectly buttery and soft in the center with an easy balance of salty pieces of pretzel and sweet mini chocolate chips. A while back, I made these shortbread pretzel bars, but I have to admit, I love these cookies more…after all, these have chocolate in them. 

Pretzel Chocolate Chip Shortbread | RevamperatePretzel Chocolate Chip Shortbread | Revamperate Ingredients (makes 10-12 cookies):

  • 7 tbsp butter, softened
  • 6 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup pretzels, crushed
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment. 

In your stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter until smooth. Mix in the powdered sugar and vanilla, scraping the bowl down as you go. Add the flour and mix on low speed until fully combined. Lastly add the mini chocolate chips and crushed pretzels (I crushed them in a plastic bag) and mix until barely combined. 

Roll out the dough until it is about 1/4 inch thick and cut with cookie cutters. Place on the lined baking sheet about 1 inch apart. Bake for 12-15 minutes until barely golden around the edges (you don’t want them to brown). Move to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Pretzel Chocolate Chip Shortbread | RevamperateNote, if you ever have issues with your shortbread becoming to crumbly to roll out or hold together, add about a tablespoon of softened butter to the dough and continue mixing. It should make a big difference. If that doesn’t work, try adding a teaspoon of water. 

Once cooled, package them up or eat one yourself and I think you’ll find that this sweet and salty shortbread has the perfect combination. Enjoy!

Coconut Easter Egg Hunt Cupcakes

Coconut Easter Egg Hunt Cupcakes | RevamperateWith Easter coming up at the end of the month, I’m really excited to share a new recipe for these fun coconut Easter egg hunt cupcakes over on RecipeChatter’s website! 

These coconut cupcakes are topped with vanilla buttercream and green coconut shavings to look like grass and garnished with chocolate egg candies to look like an Easter egg hunt. They’re super easy to make, and you won’t believe how easy it is to dye coconut any color you want. 

So head over to RecipeChatter for the whole recipe, and stay tuned to the blog for more Easter ideas this month!

Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Fudgesicles

Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Fudgesicles | Revamperate Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Fudgesicles | RevamperateHappy Monday! Today is my first day at a new job, so here’s to hoping it’s a good one! Also, Daylight Savings yesterday means I can finally have light in the evenings again and, as a blogger, that’s really exciting. All in all, I think this week is off to a good start!

Now, on to the recipe! I recently purchased almond milk for the first time. A few months ago, I started developing stomach problems and my doctor never found a cause, so I started messing around with my usual diet to see if it helped. Although I don’t think dairy was the problem (I’ve had dairy my whole life without a problem), it was the first thing I cut down on in my day-to-day diet. 

Then I started making a better effort to eat healthier and began making a lot of smoothies and eating more veggies, which resulted in me choosing almond milk for my smoothies instead of yogurt or milk. That’s when I discovered that I didn’t notice the difference at all and it eliminated a little dairy from my diet. One of my favorite smoothies is a chocolate, peanut butter and banana smoothie that I make with almond milk, and when the weather starting heating up, it dawned on me that it would make the most amazing popsicle! Well, rather, fudgesicle.

That’s how I made these peanut butter banana fudgesicles that are dairy free/vegan, but they taste like something really unhealthy you’d find in the ice cream isle at the grocery store. Trust me, friends, you’re going to want to try this one!

Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Fudgesicles | Revamperate Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Fudgesicles | RevamperateIngredients (makes 4-5 fudgesicles):

  • 1 banana 
  • 2 tbsp natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup almond milk (can use regular milk if preferred)

In a blender, combine all of the ingredients and mix until smooth. You can use frozen bananas if you prefer, but it doesn’t really matter. Pour the smoothie mixture into a popsicle mold and freeze for several hours until solid. 

To remove from mold, let it sit out for a few minutes and pull them out. From the moment you bite into them, they’re like heavenly chocolatey popsicles with subtle banana and peanut butter flavors. Best of all, you don’t have to feel guilty eating one for a snack any time! You could even have one for breakfast and pretend that you’re having ice cream for breakfast. What’s better than that?!

Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Fudgesicles | Revamperate

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies | Revamperate White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies | RevamperateYou know the cookie dough you buy from catalogs? My mom always used to buy them from kids at school so we’d usually have balls of white chocolate macadamia nut and M&M cookie dough in the freezer that I liked to snack on when I was craving something sweet. That was the only time I would eat white chocolate macadamia nut dough and it was super delicious. We rarely baked it…probably because I ate most of the dough before we could bake it. 

Nonetheless, those pre-made balls of frozen dough were my introduction to macadamia nuts. In case you haven’t already noticed, macadamia nuts are quite expensive, so when I saw them on sale I rushed at the chance. 

These white chocolate macadamia nut cookies are to die for! They may look thin, but they’re extra soft and chewy with big chunks of white chocolate and macadamia nuts. 

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies | Revamperate White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies | RevamperateIngredients (makes 14-18 cookies): 

  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg + 1 yolk
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.

In one bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt and set aside. 

In the bowl of your mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars together. Mix in the egg, egg yolk and vanilla extract. Add in the dry ingredients in batches until barely combined. Stir in the white chocolate chips and macadamia nuts with a spatula.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour. Once chilled, use a cookie scoop to scoop balls of dough onto the lined cookie sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes until barely browning around the edges. Let cool on a wire rack until cool enough to touch and transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. 

Biting into one of these is perfectly soft and chewy! Enjoy!

Green Velvet Cupcakes for St. Patrick’s Day

Green Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting | Revamperate Green Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting | RevamperateWith St. Patrick’s Day coming up, I wanted to fit in at least one themed dessert, and naturally, it had to be green. That led me to try making these green velvet cupcakes! Every recipe is more fun when you get to add almost a full bottle of food coloring to it, right?

So you’re probably thinking “what is green velvet?” Well, it’s like red velvet but green. OK, then what is red velvet? Well, I’m glad you asked because I decided to research it!

Here’s the basic rundown on red velvet cake. A red velvet cake has three key ingredients: unsweetened natural cocoa powder (usually a small amount), buttermilk and vinegar. Then, of course, food coloring gives it its signature deep red look. All three flavors combine to give velvet cakes (since there’s also blue, black, etc.) a slightly chocolate taste that is hard to describe. Red or green velvet is just a type of chocolate cake, but because it uses less cocoa powder, the buttermilk and vinegar give it the signature flavor that seems more rich and creamy and less chocolatey than your average chocolate cake. In short, a green velvet cake has all the same ingredients but uses different food coloring, which is why you can make a velvet cake in multiple colors.

Best of all, it still pairs best with cream cheese frosting, but you can also go for a standard vanilla buttercream and it’s just as delicious. If you want to go all out with the green, save a couple drops of food coloring for your frosting too.

Green Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting | Revamperate Green Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting | RevamperateFor the cupcakes (makes 12-14):

  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 tbsp cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tbsp vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 oz green food coloring

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a cupcake pan with liners and set aside.

In one bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, cocoa, salt and baking soda and set aside.

In the bowl of your mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, mix the eggs on low speed until bubbles form. Add the buttermilk, oil, vinegar and vanilla and mix on medium speed until all are blended together (do not overbeat). Slowly add in the dry ingredients, mixing until the batter is smooth. Scrape the bowl.

Then add A LOT of food coloring. The batter should be a deep green color, which means most of a bottle should go into the batter. Warning: too much food coloring can give the cake a metallic taste so use your best judgement. The baked cupcakes will appear a bit darker than the uncooked batter. Scrape the bowl in between to ensure the green is well-distributed. 

Divide the batter among 12-14 lined cupcake cavities and bake for about 15 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Let cool completely before removing from the pan.

Green Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting | RevamperateFor the frosting, try using my favorite cream cheese frosting recipe, which you can find here. OR you can also try a good ‘ol fashioned vanilla buttercream, like this one.

Pipe your frosting onto cooled cupcakes and top with sprinkles or meringues. I made some clover (ish?) meringues last time I baked just in case I could use them for St. Patrick’s Day. Enjoy! Just try not to end up with green all over your hands and kitchen 🙂

Lemon Cream Cheese Stuffed Cookies

Lemon Cookies with Cream Cheese Filling | Revamperate Lemon Cookies with Cream Cheese Filling | RevamperateAnyone else ready for summertime? I’ve been on a citrus kick lately and just cannot wait for all the flavors of summer. Lucky for me, summer comes pretty early to SoCal so it’s already 80 degrees most days. It won’t be long before I’m sipping lemonade and eating watermelon and all that jazz. To keep with my recent love of citrus, I bought a few lemons and decided to make these lemon cookies stuffed with cream cheese.

Let me tell you, these lemon cream cheese stuffed cookies are a perfect combination of tart lemon and sweet cream cheese, and there’s a nice surprise when you bite into them. Based on my coworkers’ feedback, this may very well be one of my BEST cookie recipes ever. They’re always my honest taste tester. I think these are on my top ten list, right up there with my brown butter bourbon pecan cookies (OMG). The cookies stay extra soft and it uses three different types of lemon flavoring (zest, juice and extract) for the perfect balance of tart and sweet. I shared my recipe for lemon cupcakes with cream cheese frosting recently, which came shortly after these cookies because my friend at work liked them so much. It turns out lemon and cream cheese are an excellent combination and are totally underrated, so I’m jumping on board and you totally should to. I mean, I always side with cream cheese. 

For the lemon cookies (makes about 12-14 cookies):

  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature 
  • 1 cup sugar
  • zest of 2 lemons (about 1 tbsp lemon zest)
  • 1 egg
  • 4 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
  • 1/4 tsp pure lemon extract
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4-5 drops yellow food coloring
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt

For the cream cheese filling:

  • 8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar 
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Lemon Cookies with Cream Cheese Filling | Revamperate Lemon Cookies with Cream Cheese Filling | RevamperatePreheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. 

In one bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In the bowl of your mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until smooth. Add the lemon zest, egg, egg yolk, lemon juice, lemon extract and vanilla extract, mixing well. Mix in several drops of food coloring until you reach your desired color. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients until just combined.

Move the dough to the fridge while you prepare the cream cheese filling. 

In a separate bowl, beat the cream cheese with a paddle attachment (it can be the same, unwashed bowl) until smooth and creamy. Mix in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract. 

Remove the dough from the fridge and use a cookie scoop or a spoon to form large balls of dough. Press down flat, drop a small spoonful of cream cheese in the middle and pinch the dough together again in the shape of a ball. Set seam-side down on the baking sheet with the cookies about 2 inches apart. Bake for about 10-12 minutes until the edges are formed but not brown. I check by gently touching the sides of the cookies to make sure they’re stiff enough to hold shape.

Let cool completely on a wire rack. When you bite into one, I think you’ll love the cream cheese filling and the soft, chewiness of the cookie. Enjoy!

Oreo Overload Brownies

Oreo Overload Brownies | Revamperate Oreo Overload Brownies | RevamperateThese aren’t just any Oreo brownies. These are dubbed Oreo overload brownies for a reason! Using my favorite brownie recipe as a base, I used melted chocolate chips plus dark cocoa powder to make the brownies taste extra rich. I added white chocolate chips and a thick layer of Oreo cookies in the middle of the brownies, and the baked extra tall in my 9×9 in pan. Then, to really put them over the top, I covered the brownies in a marshmallow frosting coated in more crushed Oreo cookies and melted chocolate. 

Did I put you in a sugar coma?

Good 🙂

When I pulled them out of the pan and began cutting (they were so thick!), I fell in love. One bite of one of these brownies might be all you need, but you can’t have just a bite. I stored them in the fridge until the frosting solidified enough to cleanly cut through the brownies, but I recommend waiting to eat them until they reach room temperature. Otherwise, you’ll end up with hard brownies crumbling all over the place, and no one wants that. 

Oreo Overload Brownies | Revamperate Oreo Overload Brownies | RevamperateFor the brownies:

  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp dark cocoa powder 
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 20+ Oreos, whole, chopped in large pieces 

For the marshmallow frosting: 

  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening 
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature 
  • 1 cup marshmallow creme 
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar 
  • 10+ Oreos, whole, chopped (topping)
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate, melted (topping)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9×9 inch (or similar) pan with foil or parchment and spray with cooking spray. Set aside. 

In one bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa and salt and set aside. 

In a small saucepan on the stove, melt the butter on low heat. Stir in the chopped chocolate and stir until melted. Pour into your mixing bowl to cool for 5 minutes.

Mix together the butter mixture, sugars, vanilla and eggs with a paddle attachment until the eggs are completely combined. Add the flour mixture in matches until a small amount of white still shows through. Stir in the white chocolate chips with a spatula and pour about 1/3 of the batter into the prepared pan.

Cut the Oreo’s – some into halves and some into fourths. Spread the chopped Oreo’s over the layer of batter and pour the remaining batter on top, smoothing with a spatula. Bake for about 40 minutes until an inserted toothpick still has crumbs but no liquid batter. Let cool completely and do not remove from pan. 

To prepare the frosting, beat the vegetable shortening and butter together until smooth. Add the vanilla and marshmallow creme. Lastly, mix in the powdered sugar to taste. Because the marshmallow is sweet on its own, you don’t need very much powdered sugar. Spread on top of the cooled brownies so that it reaches edge-to-edge. Sprinkle with additional Oreo chunks and drizzle with melted chocolate. 

Move to the fridge for about one hour until the frosting hardens. Then pull the brownies out of the pan and cut with a sharp knife. The frosting with soften at room temperature, so I recommend storing in the refrigerator for easier storage, but allow them to come back to room temperature before eating. Enjoy!

Raspberry Coconut Macaroons Dipped in Chocolate

Raspberry Coconut Macaroons Dipped in Chocolate | Revamperate Raspberry Coconut Macaroons Dipped in Chocolate | RevamperateIt took me a couple tries to get this recipe right. While regular coconut macaroons are quite simple with so few ingredients, I learned that adding other ingredients and flavors changes the consistency of the macaroon. I tried baking with jam to give them a raspberry flavor, and originally it made them seem kind of rubbery. After manipulating the recipe a bit and decreasing the amount of jam, I had these yummy raspberry coconut macaroons. Then to make them even better, I dipped them in dark chocolate. Obviously.

The great things about these cookies is how easy they are to whip up! No mixer required, just a food processor, and honestly, even that’s not required. Nothing has to stop you from making these, and as far as desserts go, these are on the healthy end of the scale. Well, minus the chocolate I guess. 

PS – shoutout to my mom! It’s her birthday today 🙂 

Raspberry Coconut Macaroons Dipped in Chocolate | RevamperateIngredients (makes 10-12 macaroons):

  • 2 1/2 cups shredded or flaked coconut (I prefer sweetened)
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam
  • 2 egg whites
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 oz dark chocolate 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat. 

In a food processor, process the coconut for about one minute. Add the sugar, raspberry jam and vanilla and pulse several times until well-mixed. Add the egg whites and pulse until combined. 

Use a cookie scoop to scoop balls of coconut onto the prepared cookie sheet. They can be somewhat close together because the macaroons won’t spread much. Bake for about 28 minutes until lightly brown around the edges, and cool completely on a wire rack before removing from the parchment.

Once completely cool, begin melting the chocolate. I like to melt chocolate in the microwave, so I melt the chocolate on the defrost setting and stir until full melted. Carefully hold the macaroons by the tops, dip the bottoms into the chocolate and set back on the parchment to set. If you prefer, you can also drizzle the chocolate over the tops of the cookies. Enjoy!