Tag Archives: cake

Cake Batter Bars

Rainbow sprinkle bars

Mondays are so much better as holidays.  Come back, Labor Day!  *sigh*

Since we all have to be legitimate people today, I thought I’d offer you these fun cake batter bars as a consolation.  Mondays + sprinkles = almost a holiday, right? 😉

Rainbow sprinkle bars 2

Although you can easily use a boxed cake mix to make “cake batter bars” (and I do! and they’re delicious!), sometimes I like to do things the old-fashioned way… you know, from scratch.

The key to making these crisp, chewy bars taste like cake?  Oh, just the usual suspects — butter, sugar, vanilla… and lots of it. 🙂

This recipe could easily be made into cake batter “cookies” instead of bars — simply chill the dough for about 20 minutes, then drop by rounded tablespoon onto a cookie sheet.  Bars or cookies, they’ll both brighten your day!

Rainbow sprinkles bars

[print_this]Cake Batter Bars

Crispy, chewy cookie bars that taste and look like confetti cake.  Add a layer of frosting for a real “cake-like” treat.

Makes about 16 bars

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons sprinkles
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • Extra sprinkles for topping (optional)

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 8- or 9-inch square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugars until creamy.  Add the eggs and vanilla, mixing until smooth.

In a separate mixing bowl, stir the baking powder, salt, and flour.  Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until blended.  Stir in the sprinkles and white chocolate chips

Spread the cookie dough into the prepared baking pan.  Top with extra sprinkles (about 1 tablespoon), if desired.  Bake 20 minutes or until the edges are golden brown (the bars may seem undercooked when you pull them from the oven, but they will set as they cool).  Allow the bars to cool completely before cutting.[/print_this]

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Birthday Cake Granola

Birthday Cake Granola lbbakes

What, you don’t make special batches of granola to celebrate a birthday?

…Well, if you don’t, I highly suggest you do so with the next soonest birthday you celebrate.

This recipe is a long time (~3 weeks) overdue.  I whipped up this batch of granola a few weeks ago in anticipation of my birthday, but forgot to share the recipe here!

Birthday Cake Granola

I’m a bit of a granolaholic, if you haven’t noticed: coconut almond granola, pb&j granola, nutella granola… just to name a few.  So when I thought about what foods would make me most happy around my birthday, granola definitely topped the list.  But is a granola that tastes like birthday cake, without any funky ingredients, even possible?

Birthday cake granola_lbbakes

…looks like it is — and tastes so, too!

I kept things super simple, relying on coconut oil, honey, and vanilla extract to reach a flavor reminiscent of vanilla cake.  If you don’t believe me, try it!

…oh, and sprinkles were obviously necessary.  They always are! 😉

birthday cake granola _lbbakes

[print_this]Birthday Cake Granola

Vanilla birthday cake… in simple, healthy granola form.  

Makes about 3 cups

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 2 tablespoons ground flax seed (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons rainbow sprinkles

Heat the oven to 300 degrees F.  Line a baking pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

Mix the oats and ground flax seed in a mixing bowl.

Stir the coconut oil, honey, and vanilla extract in a separate bowl (if your coconut oil is solid, microwave it in 15 second increments until liquid, then stir with the honey and vanilla).  Pour over the oats; stir until mixed well.

Spread into the baking pan.  Bake about 40 minutes, stirring every 10 to 15 minutes, until granola is golden brown.  Immediately scatter the sprinkles over the granola.  Allow the granola to cool before storing.

This is an original recipe from http://www.littlebittybakes.com.[/print_this]

Red Velvet Cake Cookies (with Greek Yogurt)

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Lately I’ve really embraced from-scratch baking.  In the past, a recipe of mine involving the word “cake” was likely accompanied by a boxed cake mix.  Don’t get me wrong, sometimes you just can’t beat boxed cake mix creations… but I’ve been trying to challenge that. 😉

One of my latest “no boxed mix required” creations are these red velvet cake cookies.  Yes, cookies that taste like red velvet cake.  And they have the soft-baked texture of a cake as well.  Who wants one? 🙂

DSC_0205

As many of my favorite soft-baked cookie recipes do, these cookies involve greek yogurt.  By creaming softened butter with plain nonfat Chobani greek yogurt, the cookies bake up soft and moist, just like the best cakes do.  As an added bonus, using part greek yogurt in place of an all-butter recipe ups the nutrition situation in the cookies.

DSC_0212

If I haven’t already sent you running to the kitchen to whip up these cookies, I’ll leave you with one last bite of awesomeness.  The whole recipe comes together in one bowl.  That’s right — you just mix the wet ingredients, and then gently fold in the dry ingredients to the same bowl.  Less cleanup, more simplicity, and these soft, rich cookies to enjoy afterward!

[print_this]Red Velvet Cake Cookies

Soft-baked, super moist red velvet cake cookies made with greek yogurt.  Dark chocolate chips are folded into the cookie dough for an extra rich treat. 

Makes about 3 dozen cookies

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup nonfat plain greek yogurt
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • Red food coloring
  • 1 1/2 cups dark chocolate chips

Heat the oven to 375 degrees F.  Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter, yogurt, and sugars until creamy.  Add the eggs; mix until blended.  Add the baking soda, salt, cocoa, and flour; mix until well combined.  To color the dough, add red food coloring in increments until the dough resembles a deep red color (the amount will vary depending on the food coloring used).  Fold in the chocolate chips.

Drop the dough by rounded tablespoon onto the prepared cookie sheets, about 2 inches apart.  Bake 8 to 10 minutes.  Allow the cookies to cool 10 minutes before removing from the cookie sheets to cool completely.  Store cooled cookies in an airtight container.  Extra cookies can be frozen.

 This is an original recipe from http://www.littlebittybakes.com. [/print_this]

Vanilla Greek Yogurt Cupcakes and Frosting

Vanilla Greek Yogurt Cupcakes and Frosting

Cupcakes.  With sprinkles.  And… Greek yogurt!  Would you expect much else from me? 😉

I’m sharing these cupcakes today because it’s my mom’s birthday.  Happy birthday, mom!  🙂  I’m a thousand or so miles from my mom, so I figured we can just share a virtual cupcake today.

In fact, let’s all share a virtual cupcake, OK?

confetti cupcake

If you were wondering whether substituting Greek yogurt for part of the “normal” fat called for in cupcakes (like butter or oil) can still yield a tasty little cupcake, the answer is a big yes.  In fact, I’d go so far as to say that these little cakes made with Chobani vanilla Greek yogurt are even more moist.

In addition to Greek yogurt, I used coconut oil in these cupcakes, which I personally believe is the secret to a delicious made-from-scratch vanilla cake.  Coconut oil was once pretty hard to find, but I see it popping up in stores all over the place these days.  Try it if you see it! (but if you don’t have it, just replace the coconut oil called for in this recipe with softened butter).

As for the frosting, it’s packed with Greek yogurt as well.  The trick with the frosting is to strain the yogurt overnight before making the frosting, so that you’ve got a super thick yogurt to work with.  Otherwise you’ll end up with a really runny frosting that falls right off the cupcake.  The horror! 😉

Vanilla Cupcakes with Greek Yogurt Frosting

[print_this]Vanilla Greek Yogurt Cupcakes and Frosting

Light and fluffy vanilla cupcakes made with vanilla Greek yogurt, that taste just as good as the boxed mix.  The vanilla frosting is a lighter alternative to a vanilla cream cheese frosting.

Makes 12 cupcakes

Prep time: 30 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

  • 1 large egg + 2 large egg whites
  • 1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (or unsalted butter, softened)
  • 1/4 cup rainbow sprinkles, if desired (for a “funfetti” look)

Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cupcake pan with paper liners.

In a small mixing bowl, stir the eggs and yogurt with a wire whisk until combined. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, stir the sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the coconut oil; beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until mixed. Add the egg and yogurt mixture, beating until smooth. Fold in the rainbow sprinkles, if desired.

Spoon the cake batter into the prepared muffin tins (each cup should be about 2/3 full). Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until the cupcakes are light golden brown. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before frosting.

Vanilla Greek Yogurt Frosting

  • 1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt, strained*
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar

In a large mixing bowl, beat the strained yogurt and butter with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth.  Reduce the speed to low; add the powdered sugar ½ cup at a time, until smooth and creamy. Makes 2 ½ to 3 cups.

*Strain the yogurt for the frosting the night before making the cupcakes.  Line a small bowl or container with a few paper towels; place the yogurt over the paper towels.  Refrigerate overnight.  The next day, you’ll have a very thick yogurt, perfect for using in a frosting recipe![/print_this]

Blueberry Muffin Snack Cake

Happy Tuesday!  I hope your week is underway and off to a great start.  Mine started a bit chaotic with a cancelled flight Sunday night, which inevitably meant an unexpected extra night in New York City with my best friends from college (I know, life’s tough).  Nonetheless, I’m back into the swing of things for… two whole days… before jetting off to Europe on Thursday.

I have a feeling “chaotic” is going to be the theme of my life for the next month or so, but for today, I’ll try to slow things down a bit… starting with this blueberry muffin “snack” cake.  Ha, I have to laugh when I read “snack cake” — is it cake or is it a snack?  Can it really be both?  In my head, I think cake can have the word “snack” attached to it if it’s sweet, but not oh-my-god-I-cannot-move-too-much-sugar sweet.  Right?  Anyway…

I made this snack cake last week and was surprised to find it tastes exactly like a blueberry muffin!  The Chobani yogurt keeps the cake nice and moist while lightening it up a smidge.  And if that’s not enough to convince you…

I think the bursting blueberries sort of speak for themselves. 🙂

[print_this]Blueberry Muffin Snack Cake

Perfect for breakfast or snacking, this yogurt cake is filled with fresh blueberries.  Try substituting raspberries or blackberries for a different berry flavor.

Serves 24

Prep time: 25 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup nonfat plain Chobani yogurt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups fresh blueberries

Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a 13×9-inch cake pan with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugars with an electric mixer until creamy.  Add the yogurt; mix until blended.  Add the eggs and vanilla; mix until blended.

In a separate mixing bowl, stir the flour, baking soda, and salt until combined.  Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until smooth.

Spread the batter into the prepared pan.  Sprinkle the blueberries over the top (they will sink into the cake as it bakes — this is a good thing).  Bake about 30 minutes or until the edges are golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out nearly clean.  Allow the cake to cool completely before cutting.[/print_this]

CHOrific Flag Cake

I know people say Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, but as a former competitive swimmer and current runner, the summer Olympics sure do give Christmas a run for its money.  I’ve been immersed in swimming and track & field Olympic trials all week long, and it’s been great.  I swear, there’s no such thing as a bad day when you know you can come home and watch swimming in primetime!

Now if only I could get my hands on some swimming tickets when my brother and I are in London next month

Anyhow, between Olympics excitement and the fast approaching 4th of July holiday, I’m without a doubt running high on American pride. 😉  So when I found myself with a ton of juicy, ripe strawberries the other day, I knew what to do…

I made a good ‘ol patriotic flag cake!

This isn’t just any flag cake, my friends.  No, this is the most delicious, light flag cake you will ever try.  You know why?

Yeah, this flag cake is Chobani-fied. 🙂

I simply added a cup of Chobani blood orange yogurt, a couple eggs, and water to a boxed white cake mix — no oil! — and filled the entire kitchen with sweet cake aromas before I knew it.

The frosting on this cake?  Couldn’t be easier.  Chobani + Cool Whip =  Heaven.   I don’t know about you, but I would love to dive into a pool of Chobani Whip…

No flag cake would be complete without berries!  After arranging blueberries and fresh sliced strawberries over the frosted cake to resemble an American flag, I cut into it to find the lightest, fluffiest cake I’ve seen in a long time.

Who needs strawberry shortcake or angel food cake this 4th of July when you’ve got a CHOrific flag cake just moments away? 🙂

Happy (early) 4th of July, and GO USA!

[print_this]CHOrific Flag Cake

No American celebration is complete without a patriotic dessert!  This simple cake recipe relies on Chobani Greek yogurt to keep dessert light without sacrificing flavor or sweetness.

Prep time: 30 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Cake:

  • 1 boxed white cake mix
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 (6-ounce) container Chobani Greek yogurt (any flavor)
  • 1 cup water

Frosting & Topping:

  • 1 (8-ounce) container Cool Whip, thawed
  • 1 (6-ounce) cup Chobani nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • Sliced strawberries
  • Blueberries

Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease the bottom of a 13×9-inch pan with shortening or nonstick cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl, combine all the cake ingredients; stir until mixed well (a few lumps is fine).  Pour the cake batter into the prepared pan.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out with just a few crumbs.  Allow the cake to cool completely before frosting.

In a medium mixing bowl, stir the Cool Whip and Greek yogurt until smooth.  Spread the topping over the cooled cake.  Arrange the strawberries and blueberries over the top to resemble an American flag.  Refrigerate the cake until serving.[/print_this]

{CHOrific Recipes} Strawberry Banana Upside Down Cake

Psst.  Mother’s Day is this Sunday.  Don’t forget!

If this is news to you, it’s probably too late to order mom a waffle iron from Williams Sonoma.  That’s what I ordered my mom!

Yes, my mom will read this and no, I didn’t just spill the beans here on the blog.  I found out last night she ordered the same waffle iron last week!  Gosh mom, don’t you know you shouldn’t go buying waffle irons the week before Mother’s Day?! 😉

Anyway, now that my thoughtful store-bought gift has been ruined, I have to think of a back-up plan… it’ll likely include a gift card, but it’ll also include cake!

Maybe my mom can buy herself the same waffle iron I bought her, but I know she won’t bake a strawberry banana upside down cake.

Fun fact: my mom has zero interest in baking, we think it skipped a couple generations. 🙂

Let’s talk about this lovely little upside down cake.  It’s so simple to make, I mix up the whole cake in one bowl!  Also, this shouldn’t be a huge surprise to you, but this cake uses my favorite Greek yogurt in place of milk… I think it makes it extra rich and moist… and, CHOrific. 😉

Oh, and the fruit… strawbanana!  Such a good combination, those strawberries and bananas.  By the way, did you know May is National Strawberry Month?  Mmm. 🙂

If you’re looking for something special to bake for the mom(s) in your life this weekend, definitely make this cake!  I know we’ll be enjoying it… along with a lot of waffles. 😉

***

New running post today — if you like fitness apparel, you’ll want to read it!

***

[print_this]Strawberry Banana Upside Down Cake

An incredibly moist and rich upside down cake with strawberries and bananas.  Use the cake recipe as a base to bake an upside down cake with your favorite fruits!

Prep time: 25 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 pound strawberries, sliced
  • 1 small banana, sliced
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup Chobani nonfat vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs

Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the butter in a 8- or 9-inch round cake pan.  Place the pan in the oven, just long enough to melt the butter.  Remove the pan from the oven.  Swirl the pan around to evenly distribute the butter, then evenly sprinkle the 3 tablespoons brown sugar into the pan.  Arrange the strawberry and banana slices in a single layer over the brown sugar.

In a large mixing bowl, stir the flour, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and sugars.  Make a well in the center of the bowl.  Place the yogurt, oil, and eggs in the well; mix until combined, then mix together the entire wet/dry mixture until combined.

Spread the mixture into the pan, over the layer of fruit.  Bake 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center of pan comes out clean.  Allow to cool 10 minutes before inverting cake onto serving plate.

Serve warm or at room temperature.  Serve with ice cream or whipped cream, if desired.  Refrigerate any leftover cake.[/print_this]