Easy Peanut Butter Fudge

Easy Peanut Butter Fudge Easy Peanut Butter FudgeI recently shared a super easy peanut butter fudge recipe for RecipeChatter that you’re doing to love!

Fudge is a great summertime recipe because there’s no oven needed, and it’s easy to make in large batches for parties. This one is ready in no time at all and is easy to customize with your favorite add-ins, like extra peanuts, chocolate chips or Reese’s. I actually really liked adding peanuts because of the extra crunch they have, but you can never ever go wrong with Reese’s!

If you like this, you might also like some of my most popular peanut butter recipes:

Enjoy, peanut butter lovers! Head over to RecipeChatter for the complete recipe. 

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Valentine’s Day: White Chocolate Conversation Heart Candy Bark

White Chocolate Conversation Heart Candy Bark for Valentine's Day | Revamperate White Chocolate Conversation Heart Candy Bark for Valentine's Day | RevamperateSo what are you doing for Valentine’s Day?

If you want to have fun playing with chocolate and give your Valentine a cute homemade gift, this super easy conversation heart candy bark is the perfect thing to whip up. Chocolate bark is really easy to make and easy to customize, so why not make some with pretty much any candy in your cupboard, right?! Naturally, Valentine’s Day bark requires conversation heart candies, but also some sprinkles, and it really is just that easy.

Ingredients (makes 6 pieces):

  • Silicone heart mold 
  • 2 cups white chocolate chips
  • Pink or red food coloring
  • Heart sprinkles
  • Conversation heart candies
  • Toothpick or butter knife

Microwave the chocolate on the lowest setting for about 45 seconds. Remove, stir and heat in15 second intervals until completely melted. Pour about half the chocolate into a separate bowl and stir in 2-3 drops of pink or red food coloring until you reach your desired color. Move the pink chocolate to a ziplock bag or piping bag with the tip cut off. 

Pour the white chocolate into the silicon heart mold as cleanly as possible so that it doesn’t splash the sides. Carefully pipe rows of pink chocolate over the white chocolate while both are still melted. Using a toothpick or butter knife, make lines perpendicular to the lines of the pink chocolate. As you run the toothpick or knife down the chocolate it will smudge. 

Sprinkle with conversation hearts and and heart-shaped sprinkles. Press lightly into the chocolate and set aside to cool and harden completely (about one hour). 

White Chocolate Conversation Heart Candy Bark for Valentine's Day | RevamperateCarefully pull the chocolate from the mold and package in little bags with ribbon to make a sweet gift for your valentine! 😉

Spiked Eggnog Fudge

Spiked Eggnog Fudge | Revamperate Spiked Eggnog Fudge | RevamperateI’ve always enjoyed eggnog, but I didn’t REALLY know how amazing it was until I was old enough to spike it with rum or bourbon. Eggnog with a little bourbon then became my go-to Christmas dessert/nightcap. And I’ve come to love eggnog everything – cookies, cupcakes, Starbucks drinks and now…FUDGE. So I’m sharing how to make spiked eggnog fudge today! It’s a fun treat for holiday parties, and you can choose to forgo the alcohol if you want something more kid friendly. The small amount of won’t make you feel anything, of course, but you can sub imitation rum flavoring if you want to keep some of the flavor without the real thing, or you can leave it out if you prefer. Leaving it out of the recipe won’t change it’s effectiveness, don’t worry. 

This is the first time I’ve made fudge with marshmallow creme, but it lends a great taste to the fudge. At first, I was worried that the amount of white chocolate and marshmallow would overpower the eggnog, but luckily eggnog is a strong enough taste on its own that you can definitely tell it’s eggnog flavored, and the cinnamon/nutmeg topping makes it even better. Oh, and making this stuff on my stovetop made my entire apartment smell like Christmas. I mean, is there anything better smelling than Christmas? Not in my book! 

Spiked Eggnog Fudge | RevamperateIngredients (makes approx. 50 pieces):

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup eggnog (can sub non-dairy if needed)
  • 2 cup granulated sugar
  • 12 oz white chocolate chips
  • 7 oz jar marshmallow creme
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg + more for topping
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon + more for topping
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp rum (or 1/2 tsp imitation rum favoring) 

Line a baking pan with parchment and spray with cooking spray (or spread with butter). In a pan on the stove, heat the butter, eggnog and sugar on medium heat and bring to a boil. As soon as it begins to boil, check the temperature with a candy thermometer and remove from heat as soon as it reaches about 230 degrees (softball stage) to prevent scorching. At this point, the sugar should be completely dissolved and the mixture smooth.

Add the white chocolate chips or chopped chocolate and stir with a whisk until the chocolate has melted into the eggnog mixture. Stir in the marshmallow creme, nutmeg, cinnamon, rum and vanilla until the mixture is smooth. Pour into the greased pan and smooth out the top with a spatula. Sprinkle additional cinnamon and/or nutmeg on top of the fudge and leave it on your countertop to harden for several hours (no need to refrigerate, but you can if you prefer). Pull the fudge out by the parchment and cut into squares with a sharp knife.

I like to serve them inside cute mini cupcake wrappers. Lay them out on a platter and they’ll be gone in no time!

Spiked Eggnog Fudge | Revamperate



Halloween DIY Skull Candy Bowl

DIY Skull Candy Bowl for Halloween | Revamperate DIY Skull Candy Bowl for Halloween | RevamperateI was never really much of a Halloween person, but in the past year that I’ve dedicate to the blog, I’ve learned to LOVE Halloween. Christmas still totally dominates in my book, but I love decorating for Halloween, creating costumes and making themed treats. This project was one of my favs! I passed by a bunch of styrofoam skulls at Michaels and had one of those “I can make something with that” moments. I wondered what would happen if I tried to make it into a bowl, and after some fiddling and scraping at styrofoam, I’m happy to say that it worked! 

While a skull candy bowl like this one may not hold enough candy for all of your trick-or-treaters, it will look nice filled with candy on your coffee table. But beware! The bowl will be empty before you know it, as was the case with the M&Ms in this picture. Sorry, not sorry? Anyway, this is a fun project – if you enjoy stabbing at styrofoam with a knife, you’re going to love it! 

Time: 25 minutes + bake time

Supplies:

  • Styrofoam skull
  • White spray paint 
  • Polymer clay
  • White caulking tube
  • Box cutter or knife 
  • Rolling pin 

First, spray paint the styrofoam skull with a light coat of white paint. I found that when spray painting styrofoam, it’s best to spray it very lightly from at least a foot away. I was spray painting a little bit too close and it caused some bubbling in a few places, which wasn’t fatal to the project, but it’s not ideal. It just gave the styrofoam a different texture that I planned at first. 

Use a small bowl to outline the opening on the top of the skull. With a knife, box cutter, or other sharp tool, begin cutting out the top of the skull. It’ll take some hacking, but it doesn’t have to look pretty because it will be covered up with clay. 

DIY Skull Candy Bowl for Halloween | RevamperateDIY Skull Candy Bowl for Halloween | RevamperatePreheat the clay to 275 degrees (or whatever your clay requires). 

Roll out the clay with a rolling pin until it’s about 1/4 inch thick. You can either eyeball it or trace a large bowl (larger than the one used on the skull top) and cut a large circle from the clay. Begin squaring the corners and smoothing them out to make the bowl deeper. Place it inside of the skull’s hole and shape it as needed to fit the space. 

Once satisfied, bake the clay for 15 minutes until hard, and when the clay bowl has cooled, place it inside of the skull opening. It should be a tight fit. It may require some pushing or additional shaping of the hole in the skull to get the bowl to fit. With the caulking tube, squeeze caulking around the edge of the bowl and skull, smoothing it out with your finger to completely fill in the gap. Let dry completely and use a damp paper towel to wipe the clay bowl clean. 

Then fill it up with candy! It may not hold enough to feed your trick-or-treaters but it will look great filled with candy on your coffee table. Happy Halloween! 

DIY Skull Candy Bowl for Halloween | Revamperate

 

Easy Homemade Mounds Bars

Homemade Mounds Bars | Revamperate Homemade Mounds Bars | Revamperate

I’m baaaack. I mean, technically I was back on Thursday but just kept my vacation rolling a bit and it was absolutely wonderful. I have to say I totally recommend Carnival Cruises to anyone looking for a reasonable vacation. They have excellent customer service, and we really enjoyed the food, shows and sunbathing. I think I ate enough soft serve to last a lifetime…oops. But it was a blast! We had fun celebrating Andrew’s birthday on board, especially at their piano bar (my fav). Unfortunately we came home a bit sunburnt, but also a bit tan and definitely refreshed. Oh and, not to brag or anything, but I won the Friends trivia challenge and Andrew won Harry Potter trivia, so we both won 24 carat gold plastic ships on a stick. It’s OK to be jealous 😉

We stopped in Catalina and Ensenada, and the views on Catalina are breathtaking, but Ensenada was another story. I’ve been to both before, but I wouldn’t go to Ensenada again unless I had money to do some kind of cool activity like horseback riding or ATVs or something. Next time I’m in Catalina, parasailing is definitely on my bucket list. We tried to keep our spending low during this trip, so we didn’t buy food off the ship or do any of the extra activities, just sightseeing, which was fine with me. After several days away, it’s nice to be home. 

PS – I finally read #GIRLBOSS on the cruise and it was as awesome as everyone says it is! If you’re an aspiring businesswoman (a.k.a a #GIRLBOSS in the making) you should definitely consider reading it. Plus, Sophia Amoruso is quite entertaining, not to mention brilliant. 

Anyway, it’s back to the real world today. Resounding sobs all the way around…and to top it off I am starting work in my new office today, which means spending an extra hour a day in a car. Yeah, I’m not happy about that but fingers crossed for a good first day!

Let’s celebrate another Monday with a super easy recipe for homemade Mounds bars using only five ingredients, and only three of them are truly essential. Easy peasy! Normally I’m not a huge coconut fan, but I do really like coconut and chocolate together, and because these Mounds bars are so sweet, I’m in chocolate heaven with one bite. 

The great thing about these candy bars is that they’re semi-healthy. OK, that’s probably subjective, but look at those ingredients! They’re made with coconut oil and honey, which keeps them really healthy, and at least dark chocolate is the best chocolate for you. No need to feel guilty about eating one! 

Now, let’s make some Mounds! 

Homemade Mounds Bars | Revamperate
Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dark chocolate chips or baking chocolate (high quality)
  • 2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut (sweetened is ok)
  • 6 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

First, line a square pan with parchment paper. This recipe won’t fill your entire pan, and you don’t need it to because it’s easy to shape. 

Melt the coconut oil in the microwave, which will only take a couple seconds, especially because coconut oil is a liquid when above a certain temperature. Since it’s hot right now, you won’t have to worry about melting it much. In a bowl, combine the coconut shavings, coconut oil, honey and vanilla and mix with your hands or a spoon. With your hands, press the coconut mixture into the pan as you would if you were making rice krispie treats. It probably won’t take up your entire pan and that’s fine. Just press your coconut until the end is straight. 

Homemade Mounds Bars | Revamperate Homemade Mounds Bars | Revamperate
Move the pan to the refrigerator for the coconut to harden. This is why I used coconut oil – it hardens when cooled, which makes these easier to dip in chocolate. 

While the coconut chills, melt the chocolate on defrost mode in 30-second increments until it’s completely melted. The chocolate should be a thin dippable consistency, but you can add a little bit of vegetable oil or coconut oil to smooth it out until it’s ready for dipping. I like to add oil to thin out my chocolate because it makes dipping much easier. 

Take the coconut out of the fridge and pull out the parchment. With a sharp knife, cut the coconut into bars, about 1 inch wide and 2 inches long. Use a fork or dipping tool to cover them in dark chocolate and set back on the parchment. While still wet, I sprinkled on a little more coconut. Keep them on the counter to harden naturally (this will take a long time) or leave them in the fridge to speed up the process.

Eat and enjoy! Remember, no need to feel guilty about these!

Vanilla Pop Rocks Cupcakes

Vanilla Pop Rocks Cupcakes | Revamperate Vanilla Pop Rocks Cupcakes | Revamperate
I hope I’m not at that age yet that I say “do you remember?” and I just hear crickets…I’m only 23, so please tell me you remember pop rocks. It was one of my favorite candies growing up, especially the watermelon flavor. Nothing compares to pop rocks and the crackling sound they make, so I was really excited to use them to make (dun,dun,dun) cupcakes! Andrew stuffed, like, a thousand packets in my Christmas stocking one year and I wasn’t sure what to do with them until now. This is a fun cake additive for 4th of July, New Years or just because. 

These cupcakes use my simple recipe for classic vanilla cupcakes – this is my go-to favorite! To make them even better, they’ve got pop rocks inside AND on top, so you get a nice crackly taste of fruit to go with the classic vanilla flavor. 

Vanilla Pop Rocks Cupcakes | Revamperate Vanilla Pop Rocks Cupcakes | Revamperate
Vanilla cupcakes (makes 12-15 cupcakes): 

  • 1/2 cup butter, soft
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 egg whites + 1 whole egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup milk (I used low fat)
  • 6-8 packages of pop rocks, variety of flavors

In one bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In the bowl of your mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Add the vanilla. Lastly, mix in the dry ingredients a little at a time, alternating with the milk until the batter is smooth. 

Separate the batter between lined cupcake cavities and baked 16-20 minutes on 350 degrees until an inserted toothpick comes out with only a few crumbs. Let cool before you core them. 

Vanilla Pop Rocks Cupcakes | Revamperate Vanilla Pop Rocks Cupcakes | Revamperate
For the frosting, I used my favorite vanilla frosting recipe. Homemade frosting trumps everything! 

First, core the cupcakes with a knife or a corer. Personally, I prefer using a knife anyway. Fill the cavity with pop rocks and replace the cupcake top. Pipe your frosting on top of the cupcakes and sprinkle with more pop rocks (either in the same flavor or a different one) and that’s all there is to it! 

Because moisture is the enemy of pop rocks, it’s best to eat these as soon as possible to keep the pop rocks lively. I found that when I looked at them the day after I baked them, the pop rocks looked like they melted and they just didn’t taste the same. If you can’t serve them same-day, wait to top the cupcakes with pop rocks until you’re ready to serve them. Then take one and enjoy!

M&M Surprise Inside Cupcakes

M&M Surprise Inside Cupcakes | RevamperateM&M Surprise Inside Cupcakes | Revamperate
A big thing these days is finding creative ways to announce the sex of your baby to be, and I’ve seen some pretty impressive and creative ideas floating around Pinterest over the past year. A common way people share their big news is surprise inside cupcakes, which house colorful candy in the middle that reveal the baby’s gender (a.ka. blue or pink candy). Well, they’re not just for baby announcements, of course. Sometimes they’re fun to make just because or for birthdays or other celebrations.

As I still had a million M&Ms left in my cabinet, I thought I’d create a celebration. Who needs an occasion, right? The bonus to surprise inside cupcakes is that they’re actually incredibly easy to make.

All you need are:

After you bake a batch of cupcakes, let them cool completely. Push down into the middle of a cupcake with the corer, press the lever and pull out. It should leave a fairly large hole in your cupcake and pull out the piece of cake that once filled out. Set that piece aside.

M&M Surprise Inside Cupcakes | Revamperate M&M Surprise Inside Cupcakes | Revamperate
Fill the hole with M&Ms! All the way to the top. Then stuff that extra piece of cake on top to hide it – it’s totally okay if it doesn’t look pretty. It’s not supposed to at this point. Transfer your frosting to a piping bag with tip, and swirl frosting onto the top of the cupcakes, hiding the lumpy hallowed cavity. No one will ever know! Garish with some extra M&Ms just because and serve.

As soon as your friends and family bite into these babies, they’ll be surprised with colorful candy. Have fun!

M&M Surprise Inside Cupcakes | Revamperate M&M Surprise Inside Cupcakes | Revamperate

Soft Brown Butter M&M Cookies

Brown Butter M&M Cookies | RevamperateBrown Butter M&M Cookies | Revamperate
Every Christmas, I find myself with a pile of candy the size of a small child and no chance of eating it all. I know I probably could if I really put my mind to it, but I’m trying really hard to practice self control. Instead of eating the entire bag of M&Ms Andrew brought home from his mom’s house, I told myself I would put them to good use. Naturally, I baked with them.

Better yet, I baked them into these soft brown butter cookies. Brown butter M&M cookies offer something different than your average cookie because they taste a little richer and have a distinct smell. Making brown butter has a sort of brown sugary caramel-like smell, and it’s wonderful as long as you’re careful not to burn it. It does change the consistency of your cookies and make them a big flatter, which is why after you melt it, you’ll have to bring it back to a solid before mixing the dough, and it will leave your final cookies slightly greasy in comparison to your average cookies, but don’t take greasy as a bad thing. You’ll still love them.

Ingredients (makes 12-15 cookies):

  • 1/2 cup butter, solid
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp
  • 1/2 cup M&Ms

First, melt the butter in a saucepan on the stove. Start on medium-to-low heat and continually stir with a whisk. Seriously, don’t use a silicone spatula. I melted one that way. The butter might spatter a bit, so turn down the heat if necessary and continue to stir it. Eventually, it will begin to barely change color to a reddish brown. When the color changes, you’ll smell the brown butter and need to immediately remove it from heat before it burns. Pour the butter into a small bowl and leave it in the fridge to harden for at least an hour.

Cream together the newly hardened brown butter and the sugars. Combine the remaining dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Mix in the egg and vanilla with the butter mixture until well-mixed. Slowly add in the dry ingredients, and mix in the M&Ms.

Brown Butter M&M Cookies | Revamperate Brown Butter M&M Cookies | Revamperate
The dough will be soft and easy to mold. Pop it in the fridge for about 20 minutes first. This will help prevent your cookies from thinning as much. Then pull out the chilled dough and roll it into one-inch balls, place several inches apart on a cookie sheet and bake on 350 for about 7-9 minutes until the edges begin to brown slightly. These cookies have a large spread, so make sure there’s proper space in between them or they’ll run together. Let them cool on a cooling rack for a few minutes, and you’ll see the cookies deflate slightly.

Now the fun part – eat them! There’s nothing like brown butter M&M cookies to make your day a little better. I accidentally ate most of the batch in one sitting after a long work day, but it was totally worth it, FYI. No shame. Enjoy!

Homemade Twix Bars

Homemade Twix Bars | Revamperate Homemade Twix Bars | Revamperate Homemade Twix Bars | RevamperateRecently, I made these homemade butterfingers bars, and they were so popular that I thought it would be fun to make more candy. These Twix candy bars can be as easy or as difficult as you want them to be, depending on whether or not you make everything from scratch, and they make a nice last minute gift for someone! Plus, you know, they taste pretty good. Parts of this recipe you can make from scratch or purchase as a time-saver, such as the shortbread and caramel.

First, you’ll need to make shortbread with these ingredients (or you can buy shortbread cookies):

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

You’ll also need:

  • 1 bag of caramel candies (I used Kraft brand)
  • 1 bag chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon of water

Start out by making the shortbread by creaming together the butter, sugar and vanilla. Once it’s completed mixed, slowly mix in the flour. It may begin to get really thick and hard to turn. If so, pull it onto a piece of wax paper and kneed with your hands until it’s soft and combined. With a floured rolling pin, roll out the dough onto the wax paper until it is about 1/4 inch thick. Using a ruler and a sharp knife, cut the dough into rectangles. You should be able to get 20-24 3×1 inch pieces out of the dough. Leave the pieces on a cookie sheet in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

Bake on 325 degrees for about 25 minutes until the edges begin to brown. Remove immediately and cool on a cooling rack.

Turning to the caramel middle of the candy – melt the caramel candy on low heat with 1 tablespoon of water, stirring constantly with a spatula so it doesn’t burn. When all of the pieces are melted remove the pan from heat, and use the spatula to spread caramel onto the shortbread while it’s hot. The caramel will harden on top if the cookies shortbread pretty quickly.

In a separate bowl, melt the chocolate chips in the microwave on defrost mode for 30 seconds, removing it to stir and continuing to microwave and stir until the chocolate is completely melted. If it’s too thick, add a small amount of vegetable oil.Homemade Twix Bars | Revamperate Homemade Twix Bars | RevamperateUse a fork to carefully dip the caramel-covered cookies and chocolate and let them dry on a sheet of wax paper. Then they’re ready to eat! Store the Twix bars in an airtight container on the counter or in the fridge for several days. Note, the caramel hardens in the fridge, so let them sit out for a few minutes before eating so the caramel has time to soften slightly. Enjoy!

You can also see this shortbread recipe in my sweet and salty pretzel shortbread bars.

I’ll be going off the grid for the rest of the week to celebrate Thanksgiving in Northern California with Andrew’s family. When I come back, you can expect to see lots of lots of Christmas ideas. I’m honestly so excited!

This is the first Thanksgiving I’ve been able to enjoy in at least five years because I always worked in retail during the holidays, and before that, my sister worked in retail, so my family got used to not really celebrating Thanksgiving. We’ve always been more into celebrating Christmas, so it’s really wonderful to be able to spend this week around family. Happy Thanksgiving!