Cranberry Pecan Pinwheels

I’ve been trying to be really good lately with my diet, but I still have a few recipes left from the holidays that I need to share. We’re finally dug out from this weekend’s big winter storm…around 30 inches of snow fell in a 24 hour period. It’s been crazy and I’m so glad things will be back to normal soon. So needless to say, I’m wishing snow day calories didn’t count!

These pinwheel cookies are so good. I love the combination of the chewy cranberries, sweet honey and crunchy pecans all wrapped up in pie crust. They’re super easy to make and you can easily switch out the filling ingredients to whatever you’d like. I bet apricots and walnuts would be really good!

Cranberry Pecan Pinwheels | Join Us, Pull up a Chair
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup sugar
zest of an orange
2 refrigerated pie crusts
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 egg
2 Tbsp water
honey for drizzling

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

In a medium bowl, mix together the cranberries, pecans, sugar and orange zest until well combined. Roll out the pie crusts on a generously floured surface into a square. Brush each pie crust with the melted butter. Spread the cranberry-pecan mixture evenly over both crusts. Roll each pie crust into a log, pinch the edges to seal.

In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and water. Brush each log with the egg water mixture and then slice each log into 10 equal pieces. Place the slices cut side up about 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheet.

Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a cooling rack and drizzle honey over the top of each pinwheel. Allow to cool completely before serving. Enjoy!

Source: Diethood

 

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap – Peppermint Crunch Cookies

I was once again excited to participate in this year’s Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap! This is the 5th year of the swap that brings together bloggers from around the world to exchange cookies – 475 bloggers to be exact! We each get paired with three other bloggers and exchange a dozen cookies. Of course, that’s the best part – getting cookies in the mail. Doesn’t everyone love coming home to find a package on their porch?!?

 The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2015

The three bloggers that I was matched up with were:
Allie from Key Ingredients
Amber from Loves Food, Loves to Eat
Jessica from Golden Brown and Delicious

As in the past, the swap partnered with Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, which is a national non-profit organization that funds new therapies used to fight pediatric cancer. There are also several brand partners who match the donation to Cookies for Kids’ Cancer dollar for dollar! How amazing is that!!

This year’s brand partners are:
Dixie Crystals
Land ‘O Lakes 
OXO

After searching around for recipes, I narrowed it down to this peppermint crunch cookie. Who doesn’t love peppermint at the holidays? The cookies are soft shortbread cookies that include white chocolate chips and small bits of crushed up candy canes. I’m thinking they would be dipped in chocolate…you know, just for an extra special treat.

Peppermint Crunch Cookies | Join Us, Pull up a Chair

 

2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
½ cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ¾ cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
5-6 candy canes, crushed
1 cup white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar. Add in the vanilla and egg. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and crushed candy canes.

Slowly add the dry ingredients into the mixer and combine until a dough forms. Mix in the chips by hand.

Scoop out the dough into a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until the cookies start to turn golden brown. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for 2 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to completely cool.

Now…who did I receive cookies from??
Jessica from A Happy Food Dance – Peppermint Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
Alice from Honestly Fitness – Lemon Coconut Cookies
Sheila from Life, Love and Good Food – Sand Tarts

For any food bloggers who want to get involved in the cookie swap next year, just sign up here to keep updated on next year’s swap!

Recipe slightly adapted from: The Recipe Nut

Apple Oatmeal Cookies – #FilltheCookieJar

I unintentionally took a few months off of participating in the Fill the Cookie Jar group. The first Thursday of the month always sneaks up on me, but I was determined to make it back this month. It was the also the perfect opportunity to send in some healthy cookies to my son’s daycare Halloween party. I knew the kids would be all sugared up and this would be a nice little treat for them instead of another piece of candy. Cooper had been asking for cookies for weeks, he’s been a little deprived lately in the sweets department. I let him try one before I packaged them up and he was raving the rest of the night about how yummy the cookies were. He’s a hard one to please lately, he’s not into sweets, he’s more of chips and pretzels snacker, but he loved them.

I loved how simple they were to make – Cooper helped me dump ingredients into the bowls and I let him mix a little of the batter….after he flung flour all over the kitchen. I upped the spices from the original recipe since I was eliminated the drizzle that was called out in the original recipe.

Apple Oatmeal Cookies #FilltheCookieJar - Join Us, Pull up a Chair

3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
2 cups rolled oats
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup flour (I did 1/2 AP and 1/2 whole wheat)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 apple, peeled, cored and shredded

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together. Add in the eggs and vanilla. Stir in the dry ingredients, oats, flour, baking soda and spices. Fold in the shredded apple.

Scoop out the batter using a cookie scoop into tablespoon sized balls. Bake for 9 to 12 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool on the baking sheets and then transfer to a wire rack to completely cool. Store in an air tight container.

Source: Jam Hands

Check out all the other cookie recipes in this month’s reveal! The theme is fall/Thanksgiving.

Pumpkin Breakfast Cookies – #FilltheCookieJar

Welcome to the August reveal of Fill the Cookie Jar – a monthly Facebook group that shares cookie and cookie bar recipes based on a specific theme. This month the theme was anything that makes you think of kids or back to school. I decided to with the “Back to School” route and chose a breakfast cookie. This summer has been a break from making breakfast for my daughter since she went to camp, but with school starting in a few short weeks, I need to get back to brainstorming ideas for her. She’s not a big fan of breakfast to begin with, so this cookie is the perfect compromise. It’s full of oats, cranberries, walnuts and some extra ingredients to make them healthy. She gobbled one up right after I took them out of the oven and told me how good they were and how she wanted a second one.

Pumpkin Breakfast Cookies #FilltheCookieJar | Join Us, Pull up a Chair

1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup honey
1 cup old fashioned oats
1 cup quick cooking oats
2/3 cup dried cranberries
2/3 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup ground flax
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
2 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a glass measuring cup, warm the coconut oil and honey together. Set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, combine the two types of oats, cranberries, walnuts, flax, pumpkin pie spice and salt. Stir in the pumpkin puree, eggs, and oil-honey mixture until well combined. Scoop the batter out using at 1/4 measuring cup and place on the prepared baking sheet. Press down slightly until the cookies are around 1/4-1/2 inch thick. I kept mine on the thicker side.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the cookies are golden brown. Cool completely on the baking sheet and then transfer to an airtight container. Enjoy!

Check out all the other bloggers participating in this month and find out what they were baking using the link below!

Source: LeelaLicious

Caramel Delight Bars

I had originally planned to make these bars for May’s Fill the Cookie Jar group but with Cooper being sick and spending some time in the hospital, I didn’t get a chance. I finally made them over the weekend and they were so good! So some of you might know these as samoas that the Girl Scouts sell, but I’ve only know them as caramel delights. I love being able to make a knock-off version at home and these didn’t disappoint! You can’t go wrong with dark chocolate, coconut, caramel and a shortbread cookie. YUM!!

Caramel Delight Bars | Join Us, Pull up a Chair

Cookie base :
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
1 egg
1/2 top vanilla
2 cups flour
1/4 tsp salt

Toppings:
3 cups shredded sweetened coconut
12 ozs chewy caramels, unwrapped
1/4 tsp salt
3 Tbsp whole milk or heavy cream
10 ozs dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9×13 baking pan and set aside. To make the cookie base, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla. At low-speed, add in the flour half cups at a time until the mixture is crumbly. Press the dough into the prepared pan into an even pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the base is set and the edges are lightly browned. Cool completely.

While the base is cooling, drop the oven temperature to 300 degrees. Spread the coconut on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Toast for 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes until that coconut is golden. Place the baking sheet in a wire rack to completely cool.

Place the unwrapped caramels in a large bowl that is microwave safe. Add in the milk and salt. Cook on high in that microwave for 3-4 minutes, stir occasionally to help the caramels melt. Once the caramel is melted, fold in the toasted coconut with a spatula. Drop dollops of the coconut caramel over that cookie base and spread evenly. Let topping set until it’s cooled.

Once the topping had cooled, remove from pan and place on a large plate. Cut 30 bars using a pizza cutter.

Melt the chocolate chips in a small bowl. I had morsels and needed to add a teaspoon of coconut oil to thin it out. Dip the bottom of each bar into the chocolate and place on a piece of parchment paper. Continue until all bars have been dipped in chocolate. Transfer the remaining chocolate to a sandwich baggie and snip the corner. Drizzle the bars with the chocolate. Store the bars in the refrigerator until they’re ready to be served.

Source: Nutmeg Nanny

Irish Cream Chocolate Cookies – #FilltheCookieJar

Welcome to the March reveal of Fill the Cookie Jar – a monthly Facebook group that shares cookie and cookie bar recipes based on a specific theme. This month the theme was GREEN or ST. PATRICKS DAY. I decided to go with St. Patty’s day and chose a recipe featuring Irish cream. I have a bottle in our cabinet and I never know what do with it besides use it coffee, so I thought this was great recipe to try it out! Plus, who doesn’t love alcohol in their baked goods?!

The cookies were really good. Creamy from the Irish cream and the perfect touch of chocolate. I would have added a little instant coffee powder if I had it to make the chocolate flavor more intense.

Irish Cream Chocolate Cookies | Join Us, Pull up a Chair

2 sticks unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
8 Tbsp Irish Cream (I used Bailey’s)
1 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

In a small bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla extract. When the mixture is light and fluffy, add in the Irish cream one tablespoon at a time. Slowly add in the dry ingredients and mix until completely combined. Mix in the chocolate chips by hand. Refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours. I was short on time and decided to do a quick chill in the freezer, about 15-20 minutes.

When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop out the dough into small balls – I used a 2 teaspoon scoop – and place two inches apart on the baking sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until the cookies are baked. Allow to cool for a couple of minutes on the tray before transferring to a wire rack to completely cool. Store in an airtight container.

Source: Gimme Some Oven

Check out all the other cookie recipes that will Fill your Cookie Jar!

Chocolate Dipped Vanilla Wafers – #fillthecookiejar

Welcome to the February Fill The Cookie Jar reveal. This month our theme was Valentine’s Day and the possibilities are unlimited with this theme. I had originally planned to make a different recipe, but there was a lot longer chilling time and I was running out time to make cookies the other night, I scratched that idea and quickly looked through my cookbooks for a new recipe. The recipe was for banana pudding with vanilla wafers – perfect I didn’t need the pudding and I had all these ingredients in my pantry! I decided to up the ante and dip them in chocolate – because anything dipped in chocolate reminds me of Valentine’s Day.

 The cookies are moist and fluffy and unlike the traditional Nilla Wafers. I really loved them and one cookie was the perfect sweet treat. The addition of the dried vanilla beans really enhanced the vanilla flavor.

Chocolate Dipped Vanilla Wafers | Join Us, Pull up a Chair

1 1/2 flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp dried vanilla beans
2 Tbsp milk

Whisk together the flour, salt and baking powder together in a small bowl, set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until well combined. Add in the egg, vanilla bean and extract and milk. Mix to combine. Slowly add in the flour mixture with the mixer on slow. Refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.  Using a teaspoon cookie scoop, scoop out the dough into small balls. Flatten the dough with the bottom of a floured drinking glass. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the baking sheet for two minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and allow to completely cool.

Once cooled, melt you desired type of chocolate and dip the cookies in. Coat in sprinkles or leave plain. Allow the cookie to harden before biting into one.
Source: The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Dessert Cookbook

Check out all the other great recipes below in the link!

Cranberry Vanilla Shortbread Cookies

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2014This is my second year participating in the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. It’s so much fun and I love that we partner with Cookies for Kids Cancer to help support this amazing non-profit!

Once you’ve signed up to participate in the swap, you’re assigned three other food bloggers and send each one a dozen cookies. Then you get three dozen cookies in the mail! My kids were loving this and came home each day waiting for our swap cookies to arrive. The one requirement is that we’re to make a cookie that is new to us. I searched high and low and found a recipe for pistachio shortbread cookies. Well…after seeing the price of pistachios (holy sticker shock!) I decided to take the base recipe and make a few modifications to use common ingredients that I always have in my pantry – dried cranberries and ground vanilla beans.

These cookies are easy to make and modify to whatever flavor you want! They would be great with fresh orange zest or lemon zest instead of the vanilla….the possibilities are endless!

2 sticks unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 cup dried cranberries
1/4 tsp ground vanilla bean

In a bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy and light. Add in the vanilla extract and mix. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch and ground vanilla bean. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients with the butter-sugar mixture until a dough forms. Stir in the cranberries by hand.

On a foot long piece of plastic wrap, form the dough into a log about 9 to 10 inches long, about 2.5 inches thick. Wrap the dough and place in the refrigerator for at least three hours, preferably overnight.

When you’re ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Slice the dough with a serrated knife 1/4 to 1/3 inch thick and place on the prepared baking sheets. Bake for 10-15 minutes depending on the thickness of your cookies. Allow to cool for 2 minutes on the baking sheet and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

After packaging up the cookies, I sent a dozen off to:

A Zesty Bite
Dang that’s Delicious 
Cooking with Curls

I received cookies from the following bloggers:

The Freshman Cook sent me the cutest Gingerbread Men. The kids gobbled them up!
Susan from A Less Processed Life sent delicious Billionaire Bars..I devoured these!
The Toasted Sprinkle sent a dozen Cris Kringle cookies. My husband loved these!

Shortbread cookie recipe slightly adapted from The View From the Great Island

Biscoff Blossoms – SRC Cookie Carnival

I know you’re confused why I’m sharing another Secret Recipe Club post this month, but we decided it would be fun to do a cookie carnival. Just like regular reveal days for the SRC, I received an assignment, but this time I had to pick only a cookie recipe from Fantastical Sharing.

Sarah runs the SRC, along with her blog, her two (soon to be three) kids and everything else that comes with life as a military wife. Sarah and I both started our blogs the same way – sharing our recipes with friends and family and tackling the continuously growing pile of recipes we’ve been saving. Definitely check out all the recipes Sarah has posted – you’ll get so many great ideas for new meals to make.

So after looking through cookie recipes, I decided on the traditional peanut butter blossoms, but with a twist. The only reason there’s a little twist is because we’re almost out of peanut butter (which is a tragedy if that happens!), so I made a substitution and used Biscoff.

1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup Biscoff cookie spread
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
1 egg
2 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cup flour
Hershey kisses
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper, set aside. In a small bowl, place 1/4 cup sugar. 
In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the shortening and Biscoff. Add in the remaining 1/2 cup sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, and baking soda, Mix well and then add in the egg, milk and vanilla. Slowly mix in the flour until the batter forms. 
Using a tablespoon scoop, scoop out small balls of dough. Roll the dough into the 1/4 cup sugar and place 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until the cookies are lightly golden brown. Remove the oven and immediately place an unwrapped Hershey kiss in the center of the cookie. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to completely cool. 

Oatmeal Lace Cookies #FilltheCookieJar

This month’s Fill the Cookie Jar group is all about Christmas cookies! I had a hard time picking a cookie for this month’s theme. I’ve been making a lot of cookies recently and running out of ideas, so off to Pinterest I went. I did a generic search for Christmas cookies and found a recipe for oatmeal lace cookies. This was a new recipe for me and have never seen them before.

The recipe was super simple and it made the most delicious crispy, chewy cookies! They’re also buttery, sweet and reminded me of caramel. I sent the majority of them with my husband to work… they would be dangerous if they were left at home with me all day!

2 sticks unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
2 1/4 cups light brown sugar, packed
2 1/4 cups rolled oats
3 Tbsp flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. 
In a medium sauce pan, melt the butter and brown sugar over medium heat. Stir the mixture together often until its combined and smooth. Turn off heat and add in the remaining ingredients. 
Scoop the batter out by teaspoons onto the prepared baking sheets. Leave two inches between cookies and they will spread. Bake for 5 to 7 minutes until they’re golden brown. 
Remove from oven and allow to cool for 1 minute on the baking sheet. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container. 
Source: Add a Pinch