Peanut Butter Mug Cake – rich peanut butter cake studded with chocolate chips, ready in under a minute!
A few days ago, I ran into a problem that I haven’t had in years: there was no dessert in the house.
I was craving something warm and gooey and chocolatey, but my emergency freezer cookie stash had run out. And to be honest, the past two weeks have worn me out with recipe testing and editing videos and trying to get ahead on everything, so the last thing I wanted to do was bake cookies.
I found a small bit of vanilla ice cream (Soy Creamy from Trader Joe’s, absolutely the best vegan ice cream in the world) in the back of the freezer and knew that I was halfway to a pizookie, or at least something vaguely pizookie-like, aka anything warm with cold ice cream on top.
Mug cakes are not a thing I make too often, but every once in a while they show up to save the day. This was one of those times.
A warm peanut butter mug cake with melty chocolate chips, topped with vanilla ice cream? So ridiculously good. In fact, I bought more ice cream so that I could make another one.
This mug cake has such a great consistency, I almost didn’t believe it was baked in a mug. It’s soft enough to eat on its own, but sturdy enough to hold up to ice cream and chocolate sauce. And it all comes together in under 2 minutes? It’s a literal lifesaver.
Carrot Cupcakes – Moist, spiced carrot cake cupcakes topped with a smooth, tangy cream cheese frosting
Ok, ok, I know. This post is coming out a day late. And on top of that, my last recipe was muffins, and cupcakes and muffins are in the same family, so I really should have waited to post this recipe. BUT I CAN’T. Because these carrot cupcakes are so good, I literally (cue Chris Traeger voice) can’t wait to post them.
I think carrot cake is totally underrated. I don’t know why so many people dislike carrot cake, whether it’s because it has vegetables in it or because it’s not overly sweet. Honestly, those are the two things I love most about carrot cake. It’s so easy to load up a cake with sugar and frosting and of course it’ll taste good, because sugar is awesome. But I like desserts that aren’t overly sweet. When you don’t load up a dessert with sugar, you need to depend on flavor to make it good. And these cupcakes are darn good.
These cupcakes are light, fluffy, and packed with cinnamon and chopped walnuts. And the cream cheese frosting? So smooth and creamy and tangy and delicious. These cupcakes were an instant hit with my family last Easter, and I’m sure your family will love them too!
In a large bowl, sift together the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt). Add the sugar and mix well.
In a separate measuring cup, mix together the wet ingredients (vegetable oil, applesauce, and vanilla). Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until almost fully incorporated.
Fold in the carrots and the walnuts. Scoop the carrot cake batter into a lined muffin tin, filling each liner about 3/4 full. Bake the cupcakes for 25-27 minutes until golden brown.
For the cream cheese frosting:
Add the butter and cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer. Let cream together on medium-high for 5-7 minutes until smooth and fluffy. Make sure there are no lumps, because it’ll be hard to get the lumps out once you add the powdered sugar!
Add the salt and vanilla and cream for an additional minute. Turn the mixer to low and add the powdered sugar. You can add it all at once or gradually, I usually add it gradually.
Beat the cream cheese frosting until smooth, about 2 minutes. Chill the frosting for 10 minutes while the cupcakes cool.
To assemble, pipe or dollop the frosting on top of the cooled cupcakes. Make sure to spread the frosting to the edges! Decorate with chopped walnuts.
*For the grated carrots, I use a mix between finely grated and slightly larger chunks. To me, this gives the best texture!
Peanut Butter & Chocolate Marble Cake – The perfect mix of two irresistible cake flavors! Rich chocolate cake marbled with a light and fluffy peanut butter cake, topped with decadent chocolate frosting.
Can I be honest? I had pretty much the best birthday this year.
I’ve literally been celebrating my birthday for the past week. I’m doing something cool every day and taking down time to watch movies I’ve always wanted to watch. Plus I cleaned and organized our entire house, because yes I’m actually 65 and organizing is genuinely fun to me. There’s a feeling you get when you buy new baskets from Target that I can’t quite explain, but it’s a feeling I live for.
I got the most thoughtful presents from my boyfriend and family (mostly stuff for streaming), and of course I got to eat. A lot. Mostly cake. And since it was my birthday, I took my two favorite cakes of all time, smashed them together with my favorite frosting, and the end result is ethereal.
I’m a peanut butter girl through and through, and I never seem to get tired of it. I took my favorite peanut butter cake recipe, marbled it together with rich chocolate cake, and topped the whole thing with a chocolate frosting that I could eat by the spoonful.
How to Make Peanut Butter & Chocolate Marble Cake:
First, make the two cake batters. Then in an 8″x8″ pan, alternate big scoops of the batters. I covered almost the entire bottom of the pan with peanut butter batter, leaving just a few empty spots, then poured over the chocolate batter and topped with the remaining peanut butter. The chocolate batter is much thinner, so it’ll pour easily into all the nooks and crannies. Then if you want to, use a knife to gently swirl the two batters together. Bake until the peanut butter cake is golden, let it cool, then top it with the chocolate frosting.
I doubled the entire recipe and baked it in a 9″x13″ pan because I wanted to feed a small army, but if you want to bake a normal amount of cake then follow the recipe as is.
I also added freeze-dried strawberries on top and… there are no words.
In a small bowl, mix the ground flaxseed with 4 1/2 Tbsp of water. Mix well, then set aside to let thicken slightly, about 5-7 minutes.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter, peanut butter, and sugars until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the flaxseed and mix for another 3 minutes until fully incorporated.
Sift together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt). Alternately add the dry ingredients and the buttermilk (meaning add 1/3 of the dry, 1/2 of the wet, 1/3 of the dry, remaining wet, remaining dry).
Set aside while you make the chocolate cake batter.
To make the chocolate cake:
In a large bowl, sift together the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda). Add the sugar and mix well.
In a measuring cup, mix together all the wet ingredients (oil, vinegar, vanilla, and coffee). Add the wet ingredients to the bowl, then gently stir until no lumps remain.
Generously spray an 8″x8″ baking pan with baking spray. Alternate adding the two batters to the baking pan.
Once they have both been added, use a knife to gently swirl the two batters together. Be sure to swirl gently, or the two batters will blend together and you won’t get the marble effect!
Bake the cake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
To make the frosting:
In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the salt and vanilla and continue creaming until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
In a microwave-safe bowl, add the chocolate chips. Microwave the chocolate in 30-second intervals until completely melted. Let cool slightly.
With the mixer on medium, add the melted chocolate. The easiest way to do this (without making a mess!) is to pour the chocolate straight down the side of the bowl into the mixer.
Once fully incorporated, sift together the powdered sugar and cocoa powder and add it to the bowl. Start the mixer on low until the powdered sugar is fully incorporated, then turn the mixer to medium-high to whip some air into the frosting.*
If your frosting is a little too thick, add the nondairy milk and continue mixing until light in color and super fluffy.
Spread the frosting over the cooled cake and decorate with sprinkles or freeze-dried fruit. Enjoy!
*Sometimes the frosting can look broken at this point. If it looks gritty or broken, just continue whipping it on a high speed until it all comes together. If it continues to look broken, place the bowl in the fridge for 10-15 minutes until the frosting is cool, then whip it on a high speed.
To make homemade buttermilk, add 1/2 tsp. of lemon juice to a 1/2 cup measuring cup, then fill the rest with nondairy milk. Mix well, then let sit for 5 minutes until curdled.
Chocolate Banana Coffee Cake – rich, chocolatey, fudgey chocolate banana cake topped with a crunchy dark chocolate streusel
There are many things that I’ve changed my mind on throughout the years. I decided to stop eating meat, then dairy. I’ve changed my mind on movies I thought I loved. I’ve changed my mind on whether or not I like raisins (final verdict: I do like them, but only if they’re in things). But there’s one thing that I’ve never changed my mind on, and it’s this: coffee cake should have a layer of streusel equal in height to the layer of cake.
Coffee cake is one of my favorite foods of all time, along with banana bread and blueberry muffins. I like coffee cake when it’s thick and crumbly and not overly sweet. I also like when there’s so much streusel that it almost overwhelms the cake, but doesn’t. This Chocolate Banana Coffee Cake has all that.
The cake base is chocolatey and fudgey, like a really good brownie. The streusel is rich and crunchy, and there’s a super thick layer of it. The banana keeps the cake moist, and the dark cocoa powder ensures that it’s chocolatey without being overly sweet. It’s everything I want in a coffee cake.
In a small bowl, mix the ground flaxseed with 3 Tbsp. of water, stir, then set aside until slightly thickened (about 5-7 minutes).
In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the melted butter and brown sugar. Mix until fully incorporated. Add the vanilla and the flaxseed and continue mixing until smooth.
In a separate bowl, sift the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon). With the mixer on low, gradually add the dry ingredients, making sure that they are fully incorporated.
Add the milk and the mashed banana to the mixer. Mix until just combined. Pour into a greased and parchment-lined 8″x8″ baking pan and spread evenly into the corners.
To make the streusel topping: combine the brown sugar and melted butter in a medium-sized bowl. Mix until fully combined, then add the remaining ingredients. Stir until the mixture becomes dry and crumbly, then sprinkle over the cake mixture. Gently press the crumbs into the cake.
Bake 35-40 minutes until fully set. A toothpick inserted in the center of the cake should come out with a few wet crumbs, but not batter!
I’m confused by the title as well. You’re not alone.
But the truth is that I don’t really know what to call this. It’s a mix between a crispy snickerdoodle cookie, a gooey blondie, and a lighter-than-air cake. How can something be all 3 of these things at once? I don’t know, I’m still trying to process.
All I know is that the crunchy cinnamon-sugar topping is everything.
This recipe comes from the amazing Bravetart cookbook, which is my current cookbook obsession. You’ll definitely be seeing more recipes from this book because oh my god are they delicious. And simple. And nostalgic. I’ll take any excuse to make a home version of good ol’ American classics.
Snickerdoodle cookies are usually a bit boring to me to be honest (sorry, I’m a chocolate and peanut butter girl through and through), but blondies are my jam. They could be the plainest blondies in the world, I’m talking no chocolate chips or anything, and I’d still pick them over anything else on a dessert table.
When I first flipped through the book, this snickerdoodle cake was the first recipe that caught my attention. I’m the type of person who gets fixated on something and can think of nothing else, so I baked it the same day. I chose a slightly different pan than recommended (the book recommends doubling this recipe, then baking in a 11″x15″ pan), so the texture is slightly different than the photos in the book. But honestly? The crunchy topping, crispy edges, and gooey center are perfection.
In a small bowl, mix the ground flaxseed with 1 1/2 Tbsp. of water. Stir together, then set aside to let thicken slightly (about 5 minutes).
Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5-7 minutes. Add the coconut oil, flaxseed, and vanilla and continue mixing until fluffy and pale in color, about 3 minutes.
In a small bowl, sift together the dry ingredients (flour, salt, baking powder, and nutmeg). Add the flour to the butter mixture in 3 parts, alternating with the milk. Meaning: add 1/3 of the flour, add 1/2 of the milk, add another 1/3 of the flour, add the remaining milk, add the remaining flour.
Pour into a greased 8″x8″ square baking pan and spread into an even layer. In a small bowl, mix together the granulated sugar and cinnamon, then sprinkle over the top of the blondie. Make sure to sprinkle it evenly, and get into all the edges and corners!
Bake 15-25 minutes until the blondie turns golden brown on the edges and is set in the middle. Let cool completely, then cut into squares.