Homemade Coconut Larabars

Lately I’ve been trying to eat healthy and I’m trying to avoid any processed food. It’s actually not that hard but when it comes to having a little sweet treat there’s always added sugar and things I can’t pronounce. When I first tasted Larabars I loved them but at $1.69 each I knew I had to recreate them myself. These Homemade Coconut Larabars are the perfect treat after a good workout or a hike in the woods….or not!

Homemade Coconut Larabars | A Sweet Baker

The whole process of making these Homemade Coconut Larabars is pretty easy.  All you need is a good food processor.   Add in one ingredient at a time and then pour it out onto some parchment paper and you’ve got yourself a pretty tasty snack.

I added in mixed nuts with raisins but you can add in whatever nuts you like.  Next time I’m going to use pecans because they’re my favorite nut.  Even some all-natural peanut butter would be pretty good too.

Homemade Coconut Larabars | A Sweet Baker

Homemade Coconut Larabars | A Sweet Baker

After I took my pics for these I cut them in half again, layered them between parchment paper, sealed them in a container and put them in the freezer.  That way they’re out of sight of my kiddies (who would have them gone in no time) and I actually think they’ll taste pretty yummy straight out of the freezer!

Homemade Coconut Larabars | A Sweet Baker

Homemade Coconut Larabars

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Protein packed energy bars that will satisfy your sweet-treat craving any time of the day!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup chopped dates
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup trail mix (my mix included peanuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, cashews and raisins)
  • 1 Tbsp. coconut oil, melted

Instructions

Line an 8X8 baking dish with parchment paper leaving sides hang over; set aside.
In a small bowl, add dates and fill with hot water. Let sit for 10-15 minutes until dates soften up.
Once dates are soft, drain water and pour dates into a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
Add in shredded coconut and pulse again.
Add in mixed nuts and pulse until mixture all comes together and is finely chopped.
Add in coconut oil and pulse again until you get the desired consistency.
Pour mixture into prepared pan and flatten with a spatula.
Refrigerate mixture for 30 minutes.
Remove pan from fridge and remove mixture by lifting both sides of the parchment paper.
Using a sharp knife, cut into 8 bars or 16 squares.
Enjoy!

Notes

Total time includes refrigeration time.

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Chocolate Cherry Chex Mix #ChexRedCarpet

The countdown is on!

The Oscars will be airing on Monday, March 2nd and I know a lot of people who are getting excited for the big night.  From small get-togethers to fancy parties, there will be lots of food and drinks involved.  That’s why I made this Chocolate Cherry Chex Mix – a little snack to eat while we watch who gets to walk up those stairs and receive the iconic Oscar!

Chocolate Cherry Chex Mix | A Sweet Baker

I must admit, one of my favorite parts of the Oscars is the red carpet.  I love watching everyone arrive in their fancy dresses and handsome outfits and checking out who came with who.  It’s not everyday that I get all caught up in the Hollywood scene but it is nice to see the actors outside of their roles on the big screen.

Chocolate Cherry Chex Mix | A Sweet Baker

Since we’ve had kids there hasn’t been a lot of time to watch all the newest movies that come out but if it’s a kids movie I’m sure I’ve seen all the nominees!  I’m also sure my kids will love this Chocolate Cherry Chex Mix because it full of sweet and salty goodness. This snack can also be gluten free if you omit the pretzels because Chex cereals are gluten free.

Chocolate Cherry Chex Mix | A Sweet Baker

There are so many great recipes that you can make with Chex cereals and you can find all of them at the Life Made Delicious website.  There you’ll find Hollywood inspired recipes and they even have a Red Carpet Chex Mix!  Perfect for the Oscars!

Chocolate Cherry Chex Mix #ChexRedCarpet

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

A delicious sweet and salty snack filled with Chex cereal, cherries, chocolate and pecans!

Ingredients

  • 4 cups Corn Chex
  • 4 cups Honey Corn Chex
  • 4 cups stick pretzels
  • 1 cup dried cherries
  • 1 cup toasted pecans
  • 1/3 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup red chocolate wafers
  • Sea salt

Instructions

Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
Spread cereal, pretzels, dried cherries, and pecans evenly between the 2 baking sheets.
Place chocolate chips in a resealable plastic bag and microwave for 20-30 seconds or until chocolate chips are melted. Cut a small hole in the bottom corner of the bag and drizzle over the entire mixture.
Repeat the above step for the red chocolate wafers.
Sprinkle with sea salt.
Place both baking sheets in the refrigerator for 20-25 minutes to allow the chocolate to set.
Remove from refrigerator and store in an airtight container.
Enjoy!

Notes

Total time includes refrigeration time.

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There’s no excuse for you to whip up your very own Chex mix because you can get a $1.00 off coupon right here.  But, that’s not all you can get…..I have a big, I mean Oscar-big, giveaway for you!

You will receive a kit that includes all of the following goodies so that you can celebrate the Oscars in style:

  • One (1) box of Rice Chex cereal
  • One (1) box of Honey Nut Chex cereal
  • One (1) Gourmet Settings Windermere Solid Spoon Server
  • One (1) Pasabahce Lyric Ophelia Serving Bowl (pictured above)
  • Four (4) Home Essentials For Home Glass Dessert Bowls (pictured above)
  • Four (4) Microlux Microfiber Polyester Napkins
  • Four (4) Attitudes Weave Metal Napkin Rings

You must be a Canadian resident to enter and you can enter across various blogs that are participating but you can only win one prize per household.  To enter, use the Rafflecopter below.

Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

“Disclosure:  I am part of the Chex Mix Blogger Campaign with Mom Central Canada and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group.  The opinions on this blog are my own.”

 

Gingersnap Bark

If you’re feeling rushed over the holidays to bake up something tasty, then this Gingersnap Bark is simple, easy and delicious!  This would be a perfect treat to give to teachers, neighbors, babysitters or bus drivers.  Fill up a little festive treat bag, tie on a pretty ribbon and you’ve got the perfect gift!

Gingersnap Bark | A Sweet Baker

Even though it’s only the beginning of December I’ve been in the Christmas baking mood for a few weeks now!  I’ve already made Reese’s Peanut Butter Chocolate Cheesecake Bars Coffee and Bailey’s Irish Cream FudgePeppermint Chocolate Biscotti and Icebox Cookies, which are all in the freezer to enjoy over the holidays!  I’ve also made  Cranberry White Chocolate Shortbread Cookies but they didn’t even make it to the freezer!

Gingersnap Bark | A Sweet Baker

This Gingersnap Bark also didn’t make it to the freezer in my house!  First of all, it doesn’t make a big batch (but you can double it if you want one) and second, it was just too good that we ate it over the course of the week and the kids took it in their lunches.

The key to getting this Gingersnap Bark perfect is to buy good quality chocolate and good quality gingersnaps.  That’s the only two ingredients in this bark so you want to have the best.

Gingersnap Bark | A Sweet Baker

When you’re planning your holiday baking list make sure you include this Gingersnap Bark on your list.  Whether it’s just for you or you’re giving it away as a gift, or at a cookie exchange, this is the perfect treat to whip up in a hurry and it looks so festive all wrapped up!

Gingersnap Bark

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

An easy, quick bark recipe that includes chocolate and gingersnap cookies that are perfect for the festive season!

Ingredients

  • 8 0z. semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup gingersnap cookies, crushed
  • 1/4 cup white chocolate chips, melted

Instructions

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
In a microwave-safe bowl, place chopped chocolate and microwave in increments of 30 seconds, stirring often, until chocolate melts.
Pour chocolate onto prepare cookie sheet and spread into a rectangle with a spatula until it's about 1/4" thick.
Sprinkle crushed gingersnap cookies evenly over top of chocolate.
Drizzle melted white chocolate chips over the crushed cookies.
Refrigerate Gingersnap Bark for about 1 hour or until set.
Remove from fridge and break into pieces.
Enjoy!

Notes

* Total time includes refrigeration time.

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This recipe originally appeared on What’s Cooking With Ruthie (where I’m a monthly contributor), where it was called Gingerbread Bark.  I’ve since changed the name to Gingersnap Bark because I used Gingersnap cookies not Gingerbread.

 

Coffee and Bailey’s Irish Cream Fudge

Do you think it’s too early to start posting Christmas recipes? I’m in the Christmas baking mood so don’t be surprised if I start posting some festive recipes in the next week or so!

This Coffee and Bailey’s Irish Cream Fudge is not very Christmas-y but I did freeze it to share with friends and family over the holidays. Our family can only eat so many treats that I have to start freezing them or giving them away!

Coffee & Bailey's Irish Cream Fudge | A Sweet Baker

I think I’ve made fudge once before but it’s been so long that I barely remember.  I just know that some of the homemade fudge that I’ve had in the past have tasted like a mouthful of sugar (gross!). This recipe called for marshmallow fluff so I figured it would probably give it a smooth texture rather than a gritty texture that I’ve had before.

Coffee and Bailey's Irish Cream Fudge2

When you stir in the marshmallow fluff the mixture seems a little runny but don’t worry it hardens perfectly in the fridge.  I made mine in a 8X8 pan and I got a nice thick fudge but this recipe would also work great in a 9X9 pan if you want more pieces that aren’t as thick. When I was cutting it up for the pictures I ran my knife through hot water, dried it off and it cut perfect slices with no problem.  Of course I had to taste-test it while I was cutting it and it was delicious!  The flavor is subtle and the marshmallow fluff kept the fudge silky and smooth.  If you’re a fan of coffee and a fan of Bailey’s then you’ll love this Coffee and Bailey’s Irish Cream Fudge!

Coffee and Bailey's Irish Cream Fudge3

Don’t forget to enter my giveaways going on right now!

For the KitchenAid® mixer and a cookbook, click here.

For the SodaStream Source with 3 flavor syrups, click here.

Good Luck!

Coffee & Bailey’s Irish Cream Fudge

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 25 pieces

A smooth and silky fudge with a subtle flavoring of coffee and Bailey's Irish Cream.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup Bailey's Irish Cream, or similar
  • 2 tsp. instant coffee granules
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups white chocolate chips or finely chopped white chocolate
  • 7.5 oz container of marshmallow fluff
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

Line a 8X8 dish with foil, leaving edges hang over for easy removal of fudge. Spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, add the butter, sugar, cream, Irish cream liqueur, instant coffee granules and salt. Stir until the sugar and butter melt.
Continue to cook the fudge, stirring frequently, until it comes to a boil. Brush down the sides of the pan to prevent sugar crystals from forming. Once boiling, insert a candy thermometer and cook until it reads 235 degrees Fahrenheit (114 C) on the thermometer.
Once the fudge reaches the desired temperature remove the saucepan from the heat and add the white chocolate chips and the marshmallow cream. Stir until the chips and marshmallow cream are melted and well blended.
Add the vanilla and stir well. Pour the fudge into the prepared pan and smooth it into an even layer. Allow it to set at room temperature for 2-3 hours and then transfer to the refrigerator until set (2-3 hours)
When you're ready to serve, warm up a knife under hot water, dry it and cut into small pieces.
Enjoy!
Store fudge in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week, in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or wrap and freeze for up to two months.
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Recipe adapted from here.

Pumpkin Pie Greek Yogurt Dip & A YOPA GIVEAWAY! #OpaYopa

I’m so excited!  I have a big giveaway for you today from Yoplait’s Yopa Greek Yogurt!

First thing I want to tell you about, though, is this awesome Pumpkin Pie Greek Yogurt Dip I made.  I had some leftover pumpkin puree sitting in the fridge that needed to be used up.  I also had some Va-Va-Vanilla Greek Yogurt sitting beside it.  Perfect opportunity to combine the two, add a bit of sugar and spices, and voila, you have an amazing Pumpkin Pie Greek Yogurt Dip!

Pumpkin Pie Greek Yogurt Dip | A Sweet Baker #OpaYopa

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