Showing posts with label cake mix. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cake mix. Show all posts


Peppermint Cupcakes with White Chocolate Ganache and Chocolate Mousse Frosting

It's cupcake time. 

I wanted to create a Christmas treat that highlighted some of my favorite holiday flavors, but especially wanted the dessert to be appealing to cupcake enthusiasts, as well as those just starting out in the baking department. Also, my husband told me the day before that he wanted to take some cupcakes into the judge and some of his coworkers. Good thing these came together so quickly, eh?

The thing I strayed away from as much as possible was the taste of toothpaste. I know, sounds strange when you're highlighting peppermint. But I've tried so many peppermint desserts that taste just like toothpaste, and don't have enough balance with the rest of the ingredients. This recipe, however, came out perfectly on the first try (not very common when I'm trying to develop a new recipe from scratch). 

I turned to a cake mix as a base (don't you dare judge! I was going for easy. And with my modifications, they tasted so good - people commented on how homemade they tasted. haaah. Fooled everyone, straight up). To the base, I added a few extracts, changed the ingredients around, and tossed in a handful of Andes peppermint bits. I love those bits! They're not peppermint sticks smashed up - they're like white chocolate and just enough peppermint wrapped into little crumbly bits. It's amazing, and they bake beautifully. 

Next, I slathered on a little white chocolate ganache to tie in that white chocolate flavor from the bits. And to seal the deal: chocolate mousse frosting. THIS STUFF IS CRACK. I found it on my favorite cupcake blog of all time, and will never turn back. It tastes like velvety chocolatey heaven - and guess what? You don't have to add 2 pounds of powdered sugar to fluff it up. Also, the mousse frosting surprisingly kept it's form beautifully - refrigerated or not. 

These quickly became our very favorite cupcakes of the year. 
Make them. Bake them. Try them. Dazzle your family this holiday season. 
Merry Christmas, dearest friends/readers/family! 


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Peppermint Cupcakes with White Chocolate Ganache and Chocolate Mousse Frosting 
makes 24 cupcakes


Classic White Cake Mix (I like Duncan Hines)
1/4 C vegetable oil
3 egg whites
1 C water
2 t peppermint extract 
1/2 t vanilla extract
1/2 t almond extract
2/3 C Andes Peppermint Crunch pieces (found in baking section)
cupcake liners

1/2 C heavy whipping cream
1/2 C white chocolate chips

mousse frosting: *adapted from
1 C heavy whipping cream
1 small package of instant chocolate pudding mix
1 small can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 C cold milk

nonpareils for sprinkling

1. to make cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare muffin tins with cupcake liners. In the bowl of your stand mixer, combine cake mix, veggie oil, egg whites and water. Mix for about 30 seconds until thoroughly combined. Add extracts & peppermint bits and mix for about 20 seconds until combined. 
2. Fill each cupcake liner halfway with batter. Bake for about 15 minute - check at 10 - just until top of cupcakes spring back. Don't cook until browned. Take them out before that, for sure, mmkay? Wait 5 minutes until cupcakes have cooled in muffin tin, then remove and continue cooling on a wire rack. 
3. make ganache: in a small saucepan, heat cream over medium heat until hot-to-the-touch. Yes, burn your finger in the name of desserts - it's worth it. If you look up asbestos in the dictionary, you'd probably see a picture of my fingers. Turn off heat. Toss in white chocolate chips and stir until completely melted. Spread over cooled cupcakes. Let dry while adding frosting. 
4. make frosting: In the bowl of your chilled metal bowl fitted with chilled whisk attachment (put both in your freezer for 5 minutes), whip cream until stiff peaks form. In a separate bowl, whisk together pudding powder, sweetened condensed milk, and milk until completely combined. Slowly fold in chocolate mixture to the fluffy whipped cream. When completely combined, pop in the fridge for about 5 minutes. Scoop into a piping bag, and frost your cupcakes. Garnish with nonparelis. 

recipe source: baking with blondie

to prevent the hundreds of emails wondering what the heck "Andes Peppermint Crunch" is, where it's from, or what it looks like, here you go, friends: 
Found right in the baking isle :) 


White Chocolate Chip Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies

Our toddler is trying to destroy us. 

Like clock-work, he'll come into our room between 6-6:30am and jump on our bed; squealing and whailing with all the energy you would never believe. It's insanity. We try to reasonably convince him to go to sleep for the next half hour, but we all know that's a beyond hopeless endeavor. He jumps on our heads, claims he hears "scary trucks" outside, and then eventually turns on the light or pokes at our eyes with his little carrot fingers.

Oh, one of the many joys of toddlerhood, right? I would think of maybe, kind of, sort of, perhaps, locking the door, but the little man is potty trained, and I don't want to rewind that clock backwards. And if there was a fire or earthquake... a mother's mind can race endless circles around that "if" word. Might as well soak in the crazy while we can, eh? 

I told Ryan that someday when Jake's a teenager, we'll just jump on his bed and poke his eyes in the wee morning hours as payback. I think he was equally as worried about that statement as I was pleased. 

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These cookies are the easiest dang things you'll ever make. If you're hitting up a holiday party, bring a plate-full of these. People will have to resist the urge to kiss you straight on the mouth in gratitude. They're ridiculous, and have such a beautiful texture. The white chocolate chips are a must - if you skip that step, I'll hunt you down. No, really. I used to make these cookies all the time without the white chocolate chips, but after tossing in a half-bag of leftover chips, I realized how much of my life had been wasted on non-white-chocolate-chip-red-velvet-cookies. It's a thing, okay?


White Chocolate Chip Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies
makes almost 2 dozen

6 T butter
2 large eggs
red velvet cake mix
1 C white chocolate chips
2/3 C powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place powdered sugar in a bowl and set aside.
2. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter, eggs, and cake mix. Dough will be a little stickier than what you're used to for cookie dough.
3. Roll dough into 1-inch balls and roll in powdered sugar. Place on a cookie sheet, about 2 inches away from the other cookie dough balls.
4. Bake for 7-9 minutes. Centers will still be gooey, let sit on cookie sheet for a minute before transferring to a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container.

recipe: BwB original


Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies

Once a year our neighborhood community comes together and hosts something called a 'Service Auction' at our church. It's always great fun, and it's incredible to witness women coming together and and donating their service for other people to bid on.

At the beginning of the evening, we're handed a list of good deeds/habits. If we've done those things (like exercising regularly for the past 30 days, or planted a garden this summer) we earn fake dollars for each one. The women can then use those 'dollars' to bid on service provided by the other women. Up for bidding were wonderful things such as homemade pottery, delicious breads and spreads, delectable desserts, free babysitting and housework, free family portraits, and even the promise of a full home-cooked meal for the entire family. It was a beautiful evening for these women to share their talents, and come closer together in all the excitement!

So, naturally, yesterday I spent baking. I made two of my favorite desserts to take: Cherry Almond Vanilla Cupcakes, and my Fresh Strawberry Yogurt Bundt Cake. I then received a text that I had signed up to bring a dozen cookies to share, too! Ahh! I completely forgot! I needed to throw some cookies together within the hour and had nothing planned! Panic.

That, my friends, is when the cake mix cookies save lives.

All the joy and splendor of Red Velvet cake... in an easy-to-make cookie form. I know these look more like something for later in the holiday season... but I think these could easily pass these off with some blood-and-gore type spin for Halloween.

Maybe if you squint your eyes a little bit?

Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies

6 T butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs
18.25 box Red Velvet Cake Mix
1/2 C powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line to cookie sheets with parchment paper. Place powdered sugar in a shallow bowl and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine butter, eggs and red velvet cake mix. Mix well until it's uniform throughout.
3. Roll dough into 1 inch balls and coat in powdered sugar. Place on cookie sheets, leaving 2 inches between.
4. Bake for 7-9 minutes - the centers will still be gooey. Let sit for 5 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack.
5. Serve warm (over ice cream!) or store in airtight container for up to 5 days.

Recipe source: The Novice Chef