White Chocolate Gingerbread Fudge Recipe

Servings: 36 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 5.5 hours -9 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

Take me to the recipe

White Chocolate Gingerbread Fudge, a quick and easy fudge recipe made with sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, molasses and spices.

White Chocolate Gingerbread Fudge, a quick and easy fudge recipe made with sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, molasses and spices. 

My dad loved fudge more than anyone I know. We used to buy it for him for his birthday and for Christmas, and since his birthday was on December 21, by the time the 25th rolled around he was well stocked. He’d tuck the tins of fudge in the armoir in his bedroom to keep it safe from my brothers and sisters and I.

White Chocolate Gingerbread Fudge, a quick and easy fudge recipe made with sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, molasses and spices.

Dad’s armoir was like a treasure trove. Along with his fudge, that’s where he kept his 1967 coin collection, his father’s gold pocket watch, a gold nugget, tiny pocket knives and other assorted stuff that fascinated us as kids. Once in a while he’d give us the tour, unpacking all of the little boxes one at a time time. I still remember the feel of my grandfather’s pocket watch in my hand; the smooth back, the weight if it and the pink cast to the gold. And I remember the pale silver coins that I loved because of the animal designs on them. The rabbit on the nickle was my favourite.

It’s no surprise that fudge reminds me of my dad. Sharing this recipe with you so close to what would have been his 85th birthday feels appropriate, almost like a gift to him. (And in case you’re wondering, he did share his hidden fudge.)

White Chocolate Gingerbread Fudge, a quick and easy fudge recipe made with sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, molasses and spices.

White Chocolate Gingerbread Fudge is never crumbly & easy to slice. 

This fudge is perfect for gift giving. It doesn’t go gritty or crumbly and is easy to slice so can easily be packaged up to give as gifts.

This recipe was adapted ever so slightly from Sally’s Baking Addiction

White Chocolate Gingerbread Fudge Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 14 ounce (396g) can sweetened condensed milk (not lite)
  • 3 and 1/4 cups (585g) white chocolate chips, divided
  • 1 Tbsp. heavy cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. allspice

Instructions:

  1. Line an 8” pan with parchment paper, leaving a little overhang.
  2. In a medium heavy bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat, combine sweetened condensed milk and 3 cups of the white chocolate chips. Stir until the chocolate chips have melted. Stir in the tablespoon of heavy cream and the vanilla.
  3. Pour half of this mixture to a smaller saucepan and place it over medium-low heat. (Set remaining aside.)
  4. Stir in the 1/4 cup of white chocolate chips, molasses and spices. Stir until chocolate has melted.
  5. You will now have two mixtures: gingerbread and plain white chocolate.
  6. Beginning with the plain white mixture, spread a thin layer in the bottom of the lined baking pan. (If it’s too thick, rewarm before pouring into the bottom of the baking pan.) The white mixture is firmer so must be used as the base of the fudge.
  7. Drizzle some gingerbread mixture on top, followed by more white mixture and continue alternating until both mixtures are used up.
  8. Use a butter knife or wooden skewer to swirl the two mixtures together.
  9. Refrigerate until firm (about five hours) and cut into one-inch pieces. Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks, or freeze (double wrapped) for up to two months.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up here to receive blog posts by email.

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies with Cream Cheese Filling

Servings: 15 pies serving(s)

Prep time: 30 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies are made wiith lightly spiced soft pumpkin molasses cookies sandwiched with cream cheese frosting. 

whoopie pies-smI have a soft spot for whoopie pies and it appears that I’m not the only one. Whoopie pie recipes are among the most popular on this website and when we share the recipes online the interwebs go crazy.

The whoopie pies that I grew up with were chocolate and had a very delicate crumb. I still love them but prefer a cookie with a bit more texture and that’s why these pumpkin whoopie pies are a new favourite. The pumpkin molasses cookies have a great texture — not too soft, and the filling is extra tasty. The spicing is lovely and the pumpkin flavour is just right.

Pumpkin whoopie pies: The pumpkin molasses cookies have a great texture -- not too soft, and the filling is extra tasty. The spicing is lovely and the pumpkin flavour is jut right.

Once assembled, pumpkin whoopie pies should be eaten within a couple of days. The pumpkin molasses cookies alone will last a week in a tin.

The recipe was slightly adapted from the always excellent website The Cafe Sucre Farine.

 

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies Recipe (with cream cheese filling)

Makes 2 ½ dozen cookies (about 15 whoopie pies)

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup  sugar
  • ½ cup of pumpkin puree
  • ¼ cup of Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 ½ cups  flour
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • ¼ tsp. cloves
  • ½ ts. salt

For the icing:

  • 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 2- 2 ½ cups icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl beat the butter with the sugar until creamy. Beat in the molasses, then the egg. Add pumpkin and vanilla. Mix until well combined.
  2. In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, spices, and salt.
  3. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until combined. Refrigerate the cookie dough for at least 1 hour or overnight.

To bake the cookies:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Drop dough by the heaping tablespoonful onto parchment-lined baking sheets (I use a medium cookie scoop).  Leave a couple of inches between cookies.
  3. Bake for 12-15 minutes until set.

To make the frosting:

  1. Beat together cream cheese and butter. Beat in the sugar until you reach desired stiffness. Mix in vanilla.
  2. Spread 1-2 Tbsp. of frosting on the flat side of a cookie and top with another cookie.

One more thing…
If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe.

Easy Pumpkin Spice Ice Cream is No-Churn & Speedy

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 6.25 hours 385 minutes

Cooking time: 6 hours

Take me to the recipe

Pumpkin spice ice cream: An easy homemade ice cream that tastes like pumpkin pie. No ice cream maker required.

Pumpkin Spice Ice Cream, an easy homemade ice cream that tastes like pumpkin pie

Just in time for Thanksgiving, pumpkin spice ice cream is a simple recipe to add to your weekend menu.

Every year I look forward to a Thanksgiving dessert of my mom’s homemade pumpkin pie. And now my daughter – a 14-year old cheese cake devotee – likes to make pumpkin cheesecake. Adding pumpkin spice ice cream to the menu is a pretty easy step for those of us who love the taste of pumpkin pie.

I love that this ice cream isn’t overly sweet. It’s rich, to be sure, but the flavour doesn’t over power your taste buds and in fact, it would be very good served alongside pumpkin pie.

Pumpkin spice ice cream: An easy homemade ice cream that tastes like pumpkin pie. No ice cream maker required.

No-churn recipe. No ice cream maker required!

This recipe uses the same base ingredients as our other ice cream recipes but it gets an autumn twist with the addition of pumpkin puree and some pumpkin spice. It takes just a few minutes to whip up and then needs six hours in the freezer.

Pumpkin Spice Ice Cream (no-churn) Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 can (300 ml) sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tablespoons Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice*
  • ¾ cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • Candied ginger, to garnish (optional)

*Substitute ½ tsp ground cinnamon, ¼ tsp ground ginger, ¼ tsp ground nutmeg and 1/8 tsp ground cloves.

Instructions:

  1. Line a 9×5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the sweetened condensed milk, molasses, vanilla, pumpkin pie spice and pumpkin puree. Mix until well blended.
  3. In a large bowl whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Fold in the pumpkin mixture, stirring just until it’s well incorporated and no streaks of whipped cream remain.
  4. Pour mixture into the prepared pan.  Even out the top and sprinkle a little more pumpkin pie spice over top.
  5. Cover and freeze for at least 6 hours.

Peanut Butter Easter Eggs a Wholesome Homemade Treat

Servings: 20 eggs serving(s)

Prep time: 30 minutes

Total time: 1 hours

Cooking time: 30 minutes

Take me to the recipe

These easy peanut butter Easter eggs are a natural version of the popular Easter treat. Made with just four ingredients (natural peanut butter, molasses, coconut flour and good, dark chocolate).

These easy peanut butter Easter eggs are a natural version of the popular Easter treat. Made with just four ingredients (natural peanut butter, molasses, coconut flour and good, dark chocolate).

I love when Easter arrives a little later in April.  While the weather can be unpredictable, this year I know my kids won’t be climbing snowbanks in their pajamas for the great Easter egg hunt.

And for the first time ever, they’ll be hunting for homemade peanut butter eggs.

  • These easy peanut butter Easter eggs are a natural version of the popular Easter treat. Made with just four ingredients (natural peanut butter, molasses, coconut flour and good, dark chocolate).
    These easy peanut butter Easter eggs are a natural version of the popular Easter treat. Made with just four ingredients (natural peanut butter, molasses, coconut flour and good, dark chocolate).

 

Peanut Butter Easter Eggs are a wholesome homemade treat.

There will be store bought candy too but I like the idea that something healthy and homemade is still considered a treat.

I have made this recipe with both peanut butter and almond butter. Both were tasty but my kids preferred the peanut butter version. They devoured them all, although my daughter is still requesting a milk chocolate covered version.

 

This recipe is slightly adapted from Ambitious Kitchen. The original recipe called for the eggs to be tablespoon sized but my kids found that to be too much of a mouthful of peanut butter.

Peanut Butter Easter Egg Recipe

Makes about 20 eggs

  • 2/3 cup all natural peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1-2 Tbsp. coconut flour
  • 150 g dark chocolate*
  • Sprinkles (optional)
  1. In a medium bowl blend the peanut butter, molasses and coconut flour to create a dough. It should be stiff enough that you can gather it into a ball with your hands.
  2. Using a half tablespoon measure, scoop the dough into the spoon and press it firmly until the edge is flat.  Nudge it out with your thumb, place on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and press one side to create an egg shape.
  3. Set in the freezer for 20 minutes.
  4. While the eggs are chilling, melt the chocolate in a double boiler.
  5. Working quickly, drop one egg at a time into the chocolate. Lift it out with a fork, flat side down, and place back on the cold baking sheet. Immediately sprinkle with decorations. (The chocolate will set quickly.)
  6. Store in the fridge or a cool place.

*You won’t use all of the chocolate but you’ll need the melted chocolate to be deep enough to dip.

Nutritional info: Per egg

  •  Calories: 87
  • Fat: 6.4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2 g
  • Cholesterol: .2 mg
  • Carbs: 5.6 g
  • Sugar: 2.2 g
  • Sodium: 1.9 mg
  • Fibre: 1.7 g
  • Protein: 2.6 g

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe.

Easy Molasses Almond Tuiles

Servings: 50 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 55 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Easy Molasses Almond Tuiles - A golden festive cookie that’s lacy and crisp.

Easy Molasses Almond Tuiles – A festive golden cookie that’s lacy and crisp.

Molasses almond tuiles is one of those Holiday cookie recipes that looks fiddly and impressive but really takes little effort. The batter mixes up quickly and goes a long way (this recipe makes about 50 cookies).

When I was in high school and university my mom used to head off to New York City in early December with a group of friends. From the stories mom would tell about the decorations, it seemed like the most festive city in the world.

Mom loved to visit the specialty food shops and would come home with imported cookies that we couldn’t get at home. One of the treats she would bring us were cigar shaped cookies that were crisp and filled with chocolate. I loved the look of them on a plate and the crispy texture was outstanding.

The crispy texture of these cookies reminds me a bit of those special New York treats. It makes them irresistible, like potato chips.

  • Easy Molasses Almond Tuiles - A festive golden cookie that’s lacy and crisp.
    Easy Molasses Almond Tuiles – A festive golden cookie that’s lacy and crisp.

 

My greatest challenge with this recipe was gathering enough suitable things to drape the warm cookies over until they had set. (I used my rolling pin and a bunch of slender vinegar bottles.) You can also create cigar-shaped cookies by rolling the just-baked tuiles around the handle of a wooden spoon.

 

Add molasses almond tuiles to your cookie tray or use them to decorate holiday cakes.

The recipe is adapted from a tuile recipe in the December 2016 issue of Canadian Living magazine.

Honey Molasses Almond Tuile Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • Pinch salt
  • 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup + 1 Tbsp. sliced almonds

Instructions:

  1. In a medium saucepan melt butter over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar, molasses, honey, lemon juice and salt. Cook, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved (2 min.). Remove from heat and stir in flour and almonds. Chill until firm (about an hour).
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F and line large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  3. Using a teaspoon measuring spoon, scoop batter and roll into balls. Arrange on baking sheet about 3” apart.
  4. Bake until golden and bubbly, about 8 minutes. Let cool until starting to firm up (about 90 seconds).
  5. Using a spatula, lift cookies and drape over a rolling pin or slender bottles until firm. Or, roll soft cookies around a thick handled wooden spoon. If the cookies aren’t setting quickly lay them back on the cookie sheet and back for another minute or so. (Watch closely so they don’t burn.)
  6. Transfer directly to rack to cool completely.
  7. Refrigerate dough between batches to firm up.

Makes about 50 cookies.

 

 

Chewy Coconut Macaroons are Easy & Low Cal

Servings: 24 serving(s)

Prep time: 25 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

Take me to the recipe

This easy recipe for chewy macaroons suits every season.

Chewy Coconut Macaroons are Easy & Low Cal

Chewy Coconut Macaroons – the one new recipe you’ll want to add to your holiday baking list this year.

They’re easy to make, low cal, low carb and delicious. They can also be made gluten-free.

I love the idea of baking oodles of cookies for the holidays. I grew up in a house where there were a dozen different kinds of cookies in the freezer by the time the holidays arrived and our basement freezer was so stuffed it had to be locked to keep it closed tight.

  • Chewy Coconut Macaroons are Easy and Low Cal
    They’re easy to make, low cal, low carb and delicious. They can also be made gluten-free.

 

Truth be told, I’m lucky if I can get even a few different kinds of cookies in the freezer in time for Christmas and I have been known to discover unbaked cookie dough in my fridge long after the holidays have passed.

One cookie that has been easy to add to my holiday baking lineup is this recipe for coconut macaroons. Relatively easy to mix up, they add great variety to your holiday cookie plate. And at just 113 calories per cookie, they add a lower cal option to your holiday treats as well.

Dipping them in chocolate is optional.

 

The recipe is adapted from the lovely  little cookbook, Classic Cookies with a Modern Twist by Ellen Jackson.

They’re easy to make gluten-free…just substitute a gluten free flour blend for the 1/2 cup flour called for in the recipe.

classic cookies with a modern twist

Chewy Coconut Macaroon Recipe

Makes 24 macaroons

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup flour (can use gluten-free)
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 ½ cups unsweetened coconut (fine)
  • 1 ½ cups unsweetened flaked coconut (wide)
  • 4 egg whites
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • Chocolate for dipping (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Whisk together the flour, salt and both kinds of coconut.
  2. In a double boiler or a metal bowl suspended above a pot of barely simmering water, whisk the egg whites with the sugar, molasses and vanilla until mixture warm to the touch and opaque (110 F). Remove from heat and pour over the dry ingredients. Fold to combine and set aside for 15 minutes to allow the coconut to absorb some of the liquid.
  3. Preheat oven to 325 F. Form mixture into 1” to 1 ½” balls and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  4. Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Rotate baking sheet halfway through cooking.
  5. Let cool then dip in melted chocolate.

Nutritional info (no chocolate): Per cookie.

  • Calories: 113
  • Fat: 7.4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 6.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Carbs: 11.4 g
  • Sugar: 7.3 g
  • Sodium: 38.4 mg
  • Fibre: 1.9 g
  • Protein: 1.6 g
  • Potassium 95.9 mg

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe.

Maple Molasses Caramel Corn

Servings: 8-10 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 65 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Maple Molasses Caramel Corn is made with molasses and real maple syrup. It's sweet, crispy and so easy to make. Recipe is nut-free and uses no corn syrup.

Maple Molasses Caramel Corn is almost too easy to make.

Did you grow up eating Cracker Jack? We have a dear family friend who always tucked a box of Cracker Jack into little gift bags for me. It was a special treat because we never had it at home and it wasn’t something that I bought myself. Even the way it was (and still is) packaged made caramel corn special, since nothing else on the shelf is packaged in a similar way. And of course each box had a little surprise hidden inside.

Maple Molasses Caramel Corn is made with molasses and real maple syrup. It's sweet, crispy and so easy to make. Recipe is nut-free and uses no corn syrup.

It’s the crispy texture of caramel corn that I love. That thin, crackly coating of caramel on perfectly crisp popcorn is irresistible.

I’m not fond of corn syrup so this version of caramel corn caught my eye. I adapted the recipe ever so slightly from the cookbook, Real Sweet, by Shauna Sever.

51OluOpwkLL._SX378_BO1,204,203,200_

This is a nut-free version of caramel corn – just the way I like it.

Maple Molasses Caramel Corn is best eaten on the same day that it’s made.

 

Maple Molasses Caramel Corn Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups popped popping corn (about 1/3 – 1/2 cup of kernels)
  • 6 Tbsp real maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • 3 Tbsp butter

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 250 F
  2. Place popped popcorn in a very large pot or mixing bowl.
  3. In a heavy pot stir together the maple syrup, molasses, sugar, water and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook, stirring from time to time, until the temperature reaches 250 F. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla (it will sputter), baking soda and butter.
  4. Pour over the bowl of popped popcorn and mix gently with a rubber spatula (you don’t want to crush the popcorn). When popcorn is well coated, scrape onto a large parchment-lined sided baking sheet.
  5. Spread in an even layer and bake at 250 F for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes or so.
  6. Cool before eating.

One more thing…
If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe

Molasses Pull Taffy Recipe from The Amazing Race Canada

Servings: many serving(s)

Prep time: 30 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Molasses pull taffy recipe is easy to follow and great fun to make with kids.

This molasses pull taffy recipe is easy to follow and great fun to make with kids. (Or Amazing Race Canada teams.)

Who doesn’t love an old fashioned taffy pull?

When I was little, making this molasses pull taffy recipe was great fun. Slathering our hands with butter and pulling great gobs of soft taffy into glossy brittle strands was just about the ultimate in kitchen fun.

 

But then there’s competitive taffy pulling…

Amazing Race Canada takes the Molasses Pull Taffy Challenge:

 

An old fashioned taffy pull became a competitive sport last spring when The Amazing Race Canada teams visited our plant in Saint John during filming for the show’s fourth season.

Teams were challenged to make a triple batch of this old Crosby’s molasses pull taffy recipe:

Molasses Pull Taffy Recipe from The Amazing Race Canada

Cooking under pressure is stressful. All four teams arrived at our plant for the sticky challenge – a four-way cook-off — in a race to be the first to complete the task.

  • This molasses pull taffy recipe is easy to follow and great fun to make with kids. (Or Amazing Race Canada teams

 

“A watched pot never boils”, so the saying goes…

In a race where time is everything, waiting for the taffy mixture to come to temperature was more than a little painful (even for those of us who were spectators). And waiting for it to cool enough to handle…

 

In the end all four teams met the challenge and raced off to St. Andrews for the next leg of the competition.

Now is your chance to compete…

Molasses Pull Taffy Recipe

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ tsp. cream of tartar
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1/8 tsp. baking soda

Instructions:

  1. In a heavy bottomed pot, combine molasses, sugar, vinegar and water. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring often, until mixture reaches 255 F (or when a small amount dropped in cold water turns hard).
  2. Remove from heat and add butter, cream of tartar and baking soda. Pour onto a buttered, sided cookie sheet.
  3. When cool enough to handle, pull pieces of taffy until light in color. (Butter hands before pulling).
  4. Twist and cut into 1” pieces. Wrap in parchment paper.

 

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. .

We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Molasses and More newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

Mocha Molasses Cupcakes

Servings: 12 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 35 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Take me to the recipe

 

Mocha Molasses Cupcakes have an intensely chocolate flavour with a subtle taste of coffee and the most gorgeous dark chocolate colour.

Mocha Molasses Cupcakes have an intensely chocolate flavour with a subtle taste of coffee.

Mid-February is a good time to have a party. Still in the thick of winter we can all use a festive day to change up the routine. I love that all you need to create a celebration is cook something special. It’s that easy.

When I was growing up, Valentine’s Day was always a family celebration. My mom would bake special treats to tuck in our lunch and then we’d have a special dessert with super. Even when we were away at university special treats would arrive in the mail or on the bus.

Mocha Molasses Cupcakes have an intensely chocolate flavour with a subtle taste of coffee and the most gorgeous dark chocolate colour.

This year cupcakes are on the dessert menu for February 14.

I bake a lot of cookies and the occasional cake but cupcakes are one treat that I hardly ever make so they’re extra special for my kids. I’ll put the two of them in charge of frosting them so dessert will be a bit of a self-serve course.

For the cupcakes pictured here I made the simplest frosting with a couple of tablespoons of soft butter, a tablespoon or so of milk and then icing sugar. I tinted the frosting with juice from frozen raspberries that I thawed. Juice from fresh raspberries would work too.  

raspberry collage

This mocha molasses cupcake recipe makes the most luscious batter with a silky texture and densely chocolate flavour. The cupcakes bake up into tender little cakes with a delicate crumb.

This is a slight adaptation of a snack cake recipe from the blog Always Order Dessert. The original recipe calls for Kahlua in place of 1/4 cup of the coffee.

Mocha Molasses Cupcake Recipe

Makes a dozen cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups strong black coffee, room temperature 
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Prepare muffin tins.
  2. In a medium bowl beat the butter, sugar, molasses, and egg until fluffy. Whisk in the coffee.  
  3. In a large bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  4. Beat in the wet ingredients and mix until well combined. 
  5. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups 25-30 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email..

We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Molasses and More newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

Cranberry Hazelnut Buttercrunch Toffee with Candied Ginger

Servings: 20 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 40 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Take me to the recipe

 

Cranberry Hazelnut Buttercrunch with Candied Ginger and dark chocolateCranberry Hazelnut Buttercrunch Toffee: A crunchy butterscotch toffee that you just can’t stop eating…

I grew up eating a delicious toffee concoction called Fredericton Walnut Toffee. The recipe is from the excellent The Laura Secord Canadian Cookbook and it’s a holiday favourite in our house. This Cranberry Hazelnut Buttercrunch Toffee recipe is a variation of that iconic toffee. It has crunch and that irresistible butterscotch flavour, but the addition of hazelnuts, dried cranberries and candied ginger makes it extra festive. 

Hazelnuts can sometimes dominate in a recipe but here they’re a bit subdued in the lovely flavour trio they create with the cranberries and candied ginger. The chocolate is nice but the whole amount is unnecessary. Depending on your mood and preference, you can reduce the chocolate by half so omit it from the first layer and save it for the top.

Also, I prefer my buttercrunch on the thin side so spread this mixture out on a cookie sheet. If you like your buttercrunch thicker go with the 9”x13” pan for this recipe.

Cranberry Hazelnut Buttercrunch with Candied Ginger and dark chocolate

 

The recipe is adapted from King Arthur Flour. Their version called for corn syrup, of which I am not a fan. Fancy molasses is a natural, and wholesome, substitute for corn syrup.

Cranberry Hazelnut Buttercrunch Toffee with Candied Ginger Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter
  • ¼ tsp salt (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 cup toasted chopped hazelnuts (skins removed)
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup diced candied ginger
  • 2 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips (divided)*

Instructions:

  1. Line a 9”x13” pan or cookie sheet with parchment paper or grease it well.
  2. Combine nuts, cranberries and candied ginger in a bowl and stir to mix.
  3. Pour half of the nut mixture into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Sprinkle over half of the chocolate chips.
  4. In a medium pot, over medium heat, melt the butter, stir in the salt, sugar, water and molasses and bring mixture to the boil.
  5. Boil gently without stirring until the mixtures reaches 300 F (hard crack stage). If you don’t have a candy thermometer test the caramel by dropping a dollop in a glass of cold water. If it hardens quickly and is brittle or breaks like hard candy then it’s ready. If it has some softness to it then it still has a little cooking to do. Watch it closely near the end so it doesn’t burn.
  6. When the toffee is ready pour it evenly over the nut mixture in the prepared pan.
  7. Sprinkle over the remaining half of the chocolate chips and then the remaining nut mixture.
  8. After 5 minutes or so, with the back of a wooden spoon or silicone spatula, gently press on the top mixture to spread the chocolate around.
  9. Leave to cool then break into chunks.
  10. Store in an airtight tin for up to three weeks.

*Using only half of the chocolate chips is nice too. Omit them from the base layer (step 3) and save them for the top layer (step 7).

Pumpkin Molasses Caramel Sauce

Servings: 10 serving(s)

Prep time: 5 minutes

Total time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Take your gingerbread from snack cake to delectable dessert with a drizzle of Pumpkin Molasses Caramel Sauce. This rich and creamy, flavourful sauce tastes lightly of pumpkin, making it an ideal topping for gingerbread and other spiced desserts.

Take your gingerbread from snack cake to delectable dessert with a drizzle of Pumpkin Molasses Caramel Sauce.
This rich and creamy, flavourful sauce tastes lightly of pumpkin, making it an ideal topping for gingerbread and other spiced desserts.

Take your gingerbread from snack cake to delectable dessert with a drizzle of Pumpkin Molasses Caramel Sauce. This rich and creamy, flavourful sauce tastes lightly of pumpkin, making it an ideal topping for gingerbread and other spiced desserts.

I grew up eating a classic brown sugar sauce with my gingerbread, or sometimes a warm lemon sauce. The idea of a pumpkin sauce had never occurred to me until I was looking for ways to use up leftover pumpkin puree that I had stored in the freezer. Then I came across this recipe from Bakeaholic Mama blog.

I love how the pumpkin gives the sauce more substance and adds a rich colour. Poured over warm gingerbread it lends a pudding-like texture to dessert which is oh so comforting on a cool November day.

Take your gingerbread from snack cake to delectable dessert with a drizzle of Pumpkin Molasses Caramel Sauce. This rich and creamy, flavourful sauce tastes lightly of pumpkin, making it an ideal topping for gingerbread and other spiced desserts.
Use this sauce to dress up any dessert, pour it over ice cream, stir it into Greek yogurt or use it as a fruit dip. Drizzled over a spicy gingerbread will always be my favourite way to eat it but there are many ways to use it up. The sauce will last in the fridge for about two weeks.

Pumpkin Molasses Caramel Sauce Recipe

From Bakeaholic Mama

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions:

  1. In a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat, warm the sugar then whisk in the molasses and butter.
  2. Bring to a gentle boil and cook, whisking constantly, until the sugar has dissolved.
  3. In another saucepan bring the cream to a simmer, remove from heat and whisk in the pumpkin puree.
  4. Whisk pumpkin mixture into the molasses mixture and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Continue cooking until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon (about 10 minutes).
  5. Store in a jar in the fridge. Reheat over medium before serving.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email..

We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Molasses and More newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

Wholesome snacks: Naturally Sweetened Coconut Mounds

Servings: 18 serving(s)

Prep time: 60 minutes

Total time: 60 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Wholesome snacks: naturally sweetened coconut mounds

Homemade Coconut Mounds let you feel good about giving into your cravings

Sometimes all you need is a little nibble of something sweet to satisfy a craving and these Coconut Mounds seem to do the trick. They’re really part energy bar, part chocolate bar, so let me give into my sweet tooth without feeling like I have been eating junk.

These Coconut Mounds use natural sweeteners as a white sugar substitute:

Coconut balls usually call for sweetened coconut and lots of icing sugar. This naturally sweetened version reduces the sugar by more than half by using unsweetened coconut and just a bit of molasses and honey to sweeten and bind the coconut. A little coconut oil is essential to holding it all together since it firms up well.

Wholesome snacks: naturally sweetened coconut mounds

I use 72% chocolate as a coating. It’s slightly bitter so a nice balance for the coconut. If you prefer something sweeter you can go with melted chocolate chips.

It takes less than 10 minutes to mix and shape these coconut mounds and then they sit in the fridge for about 30 minutes to firm up. You can get the dipping chocolate set while they’re chilling.

Naturally Sweetened Dark Chocolate Coconut Mounds

Adapted from Pinch of Yum

Makes about 18 Tablespoon-sized mounds

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups desiccated coconut (medium)
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
  • 3 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 Tbsp. honey or maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • ¼ tsp. sea salt
  • 150-200 grams of dark chocolate for dipping (can use chocolate chips)
  • Extra coconut for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Pulse the coconut in a blender or food processor a few times so it looks a bit like almond flour.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk the melted coconut oil with the molasses, honey, vanilla and salt.
  3. Scrape coconut into the bowl with the oil mixture. Stir until well combined.
  4. To shape the mounds, scoop the mixture into a one-tablespoon measuring spoon and press it firmly into the spoon until the top is flat. Nudge the mound out of the measuring spoon and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet, flat side down.
  5. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until you have time to do the chocolate dipping.
  6. Melt the chocolate slowly in a double boiler. Drop each mound into the melted chocolate, flip to coat and remove with a large fork. Place on the cookie sheet flat side down.
  7. Sprinkle over some coconut and refrigerate until chocolate has hardened.
  8. Store in the refrigerator.

Nutritional info – Per mound:

  • Calories: 144.4
  • Fat: 12.2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 9.9 g
  • Cholesterol: .2 mg
  • Sodium: 15.3 mg
  • Carbs: 8.7 g
  • Sugar: 4.8 g
  • Potassium: 166.9 mg
  • Calcium: 16.6 g
  • Fibre: 2.3 g

 Coconut mounds - a step-by-step guide

 

Wholesome snacks: naturally sweetened coconut mounds

 

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email..

We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Molasses and More newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

Chocolate Chip Hazelnut Cookie Bars

Servings: 24-30 serving(s)

Prep time: 10 minutes

Total time: 25 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Take me to the recipe

chocolate hazelnut cookie bars

Chocolate and hazelnuts and no Nutella in sight

Sometimes on vacation we’ll let our kids choose a little jar of Nutella, as an indulgence. In their opinion it’s the Holy Grail of treats so is a very simple pleasure to grant when we want them to feel a little spoiled. They’ll put it on anything and everything so it lasts about two days and that’s it — their twice-yearly Nutella fix.

chocolate hazelnut cookie bars

Nutella holds no appeal for me, although I’m a big fan of the chocolate-hazelnut combo.

I have great memories of Icy Squares, those melt-in-your-mouth hazelnut chocolates that were an occasional treat when I was growing up. That was the start of my chocolate-hazelnut fixation. Then there was the Frangelico craze one year at university. After that I got into whole hazelnuts but never lost that love of the chocolate-hazelnut combo.

Which brought me to this cookie bar recipe. Tasting intensely of dark chocolate and true hazelnuts, chocolate chip hazelnut cookie bars feel wholesome and taste authentic.

chocolate hazelnut cookie bars

Chocolate Chip Hazelnut Cookie Bars

Adapted From Kleinworth & Co

Ingredients:

  • 2-1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • ¼ cup mini chocolate chips (regular are fine)
  • ½ cup chopped toasted hazelnuts

For Glaze

  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 2.5 Tbsp cream or milk

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line a 12”x15” cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk flour, cocoa, salt, baking soda & baking powder in bowl.
  3. In a large bowl beat butter & brown sugar until fluffy.
  4. Beat in egg, molasses and vanilla.
  5. Stir in dry ingredients and combine well.
  6. Scrape onto prepared cookie sheet, cover with another sheet of parchment paper and roll as close to edges as possible but don’t worry about having a perfect shape. (This is tender dough and to keep its rich colour and lovely texture you don’t want to be adding more flour.)
  7. Sprinkle over hazelnuts and chocolate chips and bake 15 minutes.

Add Glaze

Whisk together glaze ingredients & pipe on with a baggie (with the corner snipped) or with a pasty bag.

Let glaze harden then cut into bars.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email.



We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Making Life Delicious newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.


.

 

Taffy Toast makes a sweet, buttery, crispy treat

Servings: 1 serving(s)

Prep time: 5 minutes

Total time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

Take me to the recipe

taffy toast

Every Maritime family has some sort of bread and molasses story.

Fresh bread with butter and molasses has been a dessert stand-in for decades (dare I say centuries) up and down the Eastern seaboard. In some places it was biscuits with molasses and everywhere there is the hot debate about what goes on first, the butter or the molasses. (If you butter first then the molasses just runs off. Molasses first seems to defy convention…)

taffy toast

I have yet to try toutons, the fried bread dough drizzled with molasses that is a favourite in Newfoundland but what I have become fond of is Taffy Toast, a childhood treat of Holly from Nova Scotia. When Holly told me about the childhood dessert treat that her mom used to make for her and her siblings I felt like the bread-and-molasses food group had been elevated to a whole new level. It’s sweet, buttery and crispy. Holly grew up calling it Taffy Toast and the name couldn’t be more apt.

taffy toast

 

Taffy Toast is a speedy treat that makes for a nice afterschool snack when the cookie jar is empty. (I have tested it on my children’s friends and they devour it in a flash.)

To end the molasses-first or butter-first debate I have tested this recipe both ways and the molasses-first version wins hands down.

Be sure not to overheat the pan or it will burn easily.

Update: I had a note from reader Katherine who grew up on PEI. In her family they called it Gold Toast and it’s a treat that her mom, who was originally from Boston, used to make for them.

Taffy Toast Recipe

A molasses memory from Holly Bond

Makes two slices (10 fingers)

Ingredients:

  • 2 slices of bread (porous bread is best since it lets the molasses soak in a bit more)
  • About 2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses*
  • 1-2 tsp. butter

*If you’re using thick cut homemade bread you may need more molasses.

Instructions:

  1. Spread molasses on both sides of each slice of bread.
  2. Melt 1 tsp. butter in a fry pan over medium heat.
  3. Place bread in pan and fry until golden and just crispy.
  4. Flip and repeat.
  5. Slice into fingers and serve warm

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe.

Speedy No-bake Chocolate Biscuit Cake

Servings: 18 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 75 minutes

Take me to the recipe

no-bake chocolate biscuit cake

Last minute holiday treats:

Earlier this month when I was in Halifax for work I had an overnight visit with my dear friend Lisa. She loves to bake and over the years she has shared some delicious recipes (like this Cracked Wheat Brown Bread). Well this visit she sent me home with another handful of wonderful recipes, including this recipe for Chocolate Biscuit Cake, a chocolate & cookie concoction that takes all of five minutes to put together.

The original recipe use McVitie’s tea biscuits but I have since discovered that it’s great with digestive biscuits and arrowroot cookies too.

no-bake chocolate biscuit cake

The biscuits give the bars a wonderful crispy texture and the chocolate-molasses mixture is wonderfully smooth. The raisins (or dried cranberries) add a bit of chew and brighten the flavours.

This is the perfect last-minute holiday treat. Like homemade chocolates, only easier and very pretty. Better yet, it makes a 9″x13″ pan so you’ll have lots.

Lisa’s No-bake Chocolate Biscuit Cake Recipe

  • 10 oz McVitie’s tea biscuits, digestive biscuits or arrowroot cookies
  • 1 ¾ cups chocolate chips
  • 6 Tbsp. butter
  • ½ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ¼ cup Lyle’s Golden Syrup or honey
  • ½ cup raisins or dried cranberries
  1. Break biscuits into pieces the size of a quarter and combine with raisins in a large bowl.
  2. Line a 9”x13” pan with parchment paper and grease the parchment.
  3. In a medium pot gently melt the chocolate with the butter. Stir until smooth, remove from heat and add the molasses and syrup.
  4. Pour the chocolate mixture over the biscuits and stir to combine.
  5. Spread in prepared pan, pressing lightly. Refrigerate until set and cut into squares.

 

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email.



We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Making Life Delicious newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

 

Cranberry Almond Jingle Bars: Pretty, Festive & Delicious

Servings: 24-30 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

Take me to the recipe

 

Cranberry Almond Jingle Bars

They say you eat with your eyes as much as with your mouth.

Great looking food that is presented nicely seems to taste better since eating is, after all, a multi-sensory experience.

When it comes to holiday baking I’d say the eyes do even more of the eating since festive food is often more lovely and, well, festive looking than food served any other time of the year. Just look at your average cookie plate with all of the shapes, colours and coatings.

Holiday food is beautiful and we work hard to make it that way. Although it isn’t always hard work. Take these Cranberry Almond Jingle Bars, for example. A simple shortbread base sprinkled with the festive combo of cranberries and sliced almonds and then drizzled with a buttery toffee.   Even though the instructions look longish they really are quick and easy to put together.

Cranberry Almond Jingle Bars

The original recipe called for melted white chocolate drizzled overtop, which would be lovely. But when I was melting the white chocolate I burned it three times. So no chocolate drizzle and to be honest, they’re very rich and sweet as it is so they don’t need a drizzle.

If you want to dress them up a bit more melt 1/3 cup white chocolate chips (or about 1 1/2 squares of Baker’s Chocolate) and drizzle it over top once they have mostly cooled. Wait for the chocolate to set before you cut them into bars.

Cranberry Almond Jingle Bar Recipe

Adapted from Eyes Bigger Than My Stomach 

Base:

  • 1 cup + 4 Tbs. butter, softened
  • 6 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • ¼ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger

Topping:

  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup sliced almonds

Toffee Glaze:

  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/2 cup butter

To make the base:

  1. Beat together the butter and sugar.
  2. Mix in the egg and vanilla.
  3. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and ginger and stir into the creamed mixture. Stir just until combined.
  4. Press into a 9”x13” pan that has been lined with parchment paper. (Ensure that the parchment goes up the sides too). Bake at 350 F for 15 minutes. The base will be set, but this will bake again once the topping is added so don’t worry.
  5. Leave the oven on.

To make the topping:

  1. Combine the cranberries and almonds and spread over cooked base.

To make the Toffee Glaze:

  1. Melt brown sugar, molasses and butter over low heat. Bring to the boil and simmer for 3 minutes.
  2. Pour over the cranberries and almonds.
  3. Bake for 30 minutes at 350F   Cool completely before cutting.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email.



We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Making Life Delicious newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

 

Easy Chocolate Orange Gingersnap Drops for the non-candy-maker

Servings: 30 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 75 minutes

Take me to the recipe

 

chocolate orange gingersnap drops

These are one of those festive treats that is perfect for those who can’t resist the bright holiday flavours of candied ginger, gingersnaps and dark chocolate. The people who want to nibble something that tastes unmistakeably of Christmas, and an old fashioned Christmas at that.

chocolate orange gingersnap drops

Every December I am reminded of the fact that candy making is not my thing. I love the idea of it – I grew up eating ribbon candy and barley toys made by Ganong Bros., just down the road in St. Stephen New Brunswick. My mom even shipped them to me when I was living in France so I wouldn’t miss all of our family traditions the year I didn‘t make it home for the holidays.

chocolate orange gingersnap drops

Christmas candy is a beautiful thing but my candy thermometer confidence is low so I only attempt candy about once every four years. This is not one of those years.

Hence the appeal of this holiday candy. No thermometer required. In fact there is hardly any effort required at all. You just do a little crushing, a little melting and a little mixing.

This is another outstanding recipe from the new Messy Baker cookbook.

Chocolate Orange Gingersnap Drop Recipe

Makes about 30

Adapted from The Messy Baker

  • ¾ cup chopped toasted walnuts
  • 1 cup roughly crushed gingersnaps (about 4 oz)
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped candied ginger
  • Zest of ½ an orange
  • ½ cup butter
  • ¼ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses*
  • 7 oz dark chocolate
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  1. In a medium bowl combine the walnuts, gingersnap crumbs, candied ginger and orange zest.
  2. Place about 30 mini paper cups (smaller than mini muffin cups) on a sided cookie sheet.
  3. In a medium saucepan gently melt the butter with the molasses. Bring to a gentle boil, remove from heat and add chocolate. Stir until melted then beat in the egg.
  4. Pour over the crumb mixture and mix with a spatula until well combined.
  5. Drop by heaping tablespoonful into paper cups. Refrigerate until firm.

*The original recipe called for corn syrup or Lyle’s Golden Syrup. If you want to mellow the flavour a bit use 2 Tbsp. molasses and 2 Tbsp. syrup.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email.



We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Making Life Delicious newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

 

Peanut Butter Molasses Cookies dressed up for Christmas

Servings: 30 serving(s)

Prep time: 10 minutes

Total time: 23 minutes

Cooking time: 13 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Peanut Butter Molasses Cookies are chewy and lightly spiced for the holidays. 

Peanut Butter Molasses Cookies

Sometimes everyday cookies can use a little decorating for Christmas. As with our homes, I suppose, a little festive touch can make the ordinary feel (or taste) a little special.

There are some cookies that I make every year: gingerbread cut out cookies, cornmeal biscotti and rugelach. That small list leaves room to add a few new recipes to my cookie plate each December.

Peanut Butter Molasses Cookies

Fiddly cookies are not my thing so a simple peanut butter cookie dressed up with Hershey’s Hugs was an easy choice. Plus it was fun for my kids to help. We were an assembly line: I formed the cookie dough balls then they did the crisscross press with a fork and placed the Hugs in the centre of each cookie.

These are a chewy peanut butter cookie and lightly spiced for the holidays. I used natural peanut butter and they worked out well but the original recipe called for regular peanut butter.  Suit yourself.

By the way, peanut butter and molasses is an epic combination. Try it on toast.

peanut butter molasses cookies

Peanut Butter Molasses Cookie Recipe

Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cookies

Adapted from Chocolate Moosey

Ingredients

  • 2 to 2 ¼ cups flour*
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 30 chocolate “kisses” or “hugs” (optional)**

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together 2 cups of the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt.
  3. In another large bowl, beat together the molasses, butter, peanut butter brown sugar until smooth. Beat in the egg.
  4. Stir in the flour mixture a cup at a time and mix until combined. (Add extra ¼ cup of flour if dough seems too soft).
  5. Shape the dough into 1 1/2 inch balls and place about 2 inches apart on the cookie sheets. Press with the tines of a fork in a criss-cross pattern.
  6. Bake 11-13 minutes or until edges are firm.**
  7. Transfer cookies to a cooling rack.

*Start with the 2 cups of flour and only add the extra ¼ cup if your dough is too soft.

**If you’re adding the chocolates: When there are 5 minutes left, remove the pan from the oven and quickly place the chocolates. Return pan to the oven to finish baking.

 

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe.

White Chocolate Truffle Stuffed Molasses Cookies

Servings: 24-30 serving(s)

Prep time: 75 minutes

Total time: 95 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Take me to the recipe

white chocolate truffle stuffed molasses cookies

Meet our prize winning cookie!

Back in the spring we hosted a molasses cookie contest with Food Bloggers of Canada, a national organization of home cooks and bakers who blog about food.

Choosing a winner was one of the joys of my job: I baked a batch of each of the five finalists and my colleagues and I nibbled our way through every single one of them until we chose a winner.

(Here are the five cookie contest finalists)

This Truffle Stuffed Molasses Cookie is the one that came out on top, made by Ashley of The Recipe Rebel blog.

It’s deceptively simple – a classic ginger crinkle cookie — but it has a white chocolate truffle tucked inside. An irresistible surprise.

white chocolate truffle stuffed molasses cookies

The original recipe calls for homemade truffles, which I did make the first time I tried these cookies. I just didn’t make them very well, and my leak rate was pretty high. If you want to give homemade truffles a try click through to the original recipe on The Recipe Rebel. The truffle recipe is part of the cookie recipe on her site.

The hardest part about making these cookies? Hiding the truffles from my kids so they wouldn’t get devoured before the dough chilled.

White Chocolate Truffle Stuffed Molasses Cookie Recipe

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup sugar (for rolling)
  • 6-8 Lindt white chocolate truffles, cut into quarters

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl beat sugar and butter until well combined. Beat in egg and molasses.
  3. Add flour, ginger, baking soda and cinnamon and beat until completely combined.
  4. Cover and refrigerate 20 minutes to an hour.
  5. Shape dough into 1 1/2″ balls and flatten the middle with your thumb. Place a truffle piece in the middle and roll the dough around it, being careful not to leave any holes or gaps for it to leak. Roll cookie in granulated sugar and place on a cookie sheet at least 2″ apart. Chill for 10 minutes, if you have time.
  6. Bake 8-10 minutes, until set. Cool slightly before removing from pan to a cooling rack.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email.



We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Making Life Delicious newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

S’mores in a pan: an indoor take on the campfire classic

Servings: 12 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 15 minutes

Take me to the recipe

s'mores bars

The last bag of marshmallow that I bought was the size of my pillow.

I was more than a little self-conscious as I went through the grocery store check-out with a bag that large but I sure felt like a hero when I walked in the door at home and practically had my kids cheering my arrival.

s'mores bars

We’re down to half a bag of marshmallows.

This past holiday weekend was a s’mores fest up at our cottage. Three clear evenings and our first campfires of the season.

My kids have perfected marshmallow toasting for s’mores but this year I threw something new into our weekend mix: indoor s’mores bars, chocolaty marshmallow graham squares that require neither fire nor oven.

This recipe celebrates what my kids love most about s’mores – the marshmallows and graham crackers. There is just enough chocolate to bind the marshmallows and graham crackers and a touch of molasses intensifies the chocolate flavour.

This recipe doubles well.

s'mores bars

Indoor S’mores Bar Recipe

Makes 12 bars

Adapted from Karen’s Kitchen Stories 

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup boiling water
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, very soft
  • 1/2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 ¼ cups chopped graham crackers (save the crumbs)
  • 2 ¼ cups marshmallows (mini marshmallows or regular marshmallows quartered)

Directions:

  1. Line an 8” baking dish or pan with parchment paper.
  2. Pour the chocolate chips into a medium bowl and pour over the boiling water. Set aside for 5 minutes to let the chocolate melt.
  3. In a large bowl toss the graham crackers and marshmallows
  4. Stir the chocolate chip mixture until smooth then add the butter. Stir until melted and then stir in the molasses.
  5. Pour the chocolate mixture over the marshmallows and graham crackers and stir with a rubber spatula, scraping the chocolate from the sides and bottom of the bowl to incorporate.
  6. Scrape into prepared pan, pressing down gently to compact the bars (taking care not to crush the graham crackers).
  7. Sprinkle over the crumbs left from cutting the graham crackers and refrigerate for at least two hours before cutting.
  8. Store in the fridge.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email.



We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Making Life Delicious newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.

Bridget signature

 

 

Chewy Chocolaty Gingerbread Blondies

Servings: 16 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes

Take me to the recipe

chewy gingerbread blondies

Dark, chewy and flavourful.

That’s how I like my brownies and these blond brownies fit that category perfectly thanks to the cup of chocolate chips added to the batter.

I grew up with cake-like brownies and blondies, which I still love, but there is something a little decadent about a chewy, fudgy brownie. To some they’re simply undercooked but to others they take on a candy-like quality.

chewy gingerbread blondies

My dad was a connoisseur of fudge so I grew up with fudge always being around the house. Dad’s fudge was tucked away in his armoire but he used to share it with us in the evenings when we were getting ready for bed.

Now my kids have taken up the cause. When we’re at markets where fresh fudge is sold they pool their money to buy it in great slabs.

And they love all things fudgy.

It was no surprize when I baked these fudgy gingerbread blondies that they disappeared at an alarming rate. Every time my son passed through the kitchen he grabbed another. I finally had to put the few remaining squares in the basement freezer.
chewy gingerbread blondies

Chewy Gingerbread Blondie Recipe

AKA Blond Brownies

Adapted from Averie Cooks

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup + 2 Tbsp. chocolate chips, divided

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl mix the melted butter (slightly cooled) with the brown sugar, egg, molasses and vanilla.
  3. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and spices.
  4. Add flour mixture to butter-sugar mixture and mix until just combined.
  5. Stir in 1 cup chocolate chips.
  6. Spread in prepared pan and sprinkle with remaining 2 Tbsp. of chocolate chips and press them into the batter ever so lightly.
  7. Bake 30-35 minutes until the blondies start to pull away from the edge of the pan. Bake a little longer if you prefer a firmer blondie.
  8. Cool in pan and cut into squares.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email. We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. It includes cooking tips, menu ideas, featured recipes and more. Here’s the link to subscribe.

Toasted Pecan Caramel Sauce

Prep time: 5 minutes

Total time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Take me to the recipe

toasted pecan caramel sauce
First off I’d like to apologize for the empty banana bread emails that arrived in subscribers’ inboxes over the weekend.

The last thing I want to do is send spam your way and I feel terrible — like I crank called you or rang your doorbell and ran away. The whole fiasco was a technical error related to the development of our new French website. I don’t mean that as an excuse — I just thought you might like to know.

In any case, I hope that this toasted pecan caramel sauce helps to makes up for it.

This is the kind of sauce that you can eat with a spoon. It’s rich and creamy and takes just a few minutes to make.

toasted pecan caramel sauce

Caramel has always been my favourite flavour and my favourite kind of candy.

Remember those slabs of McIntosh caramel that came in the flat plaid box? I used to put it in the freezer for a bit and then slap it on my knee to break the caramel into pieces, or sometimes I’d just nibble away on the whole bar.

toasted pecan caramel sauce

Caramel sauce is a simple way to dress up dessert.  Whether you’re serving cake or ice cream, a drizzle of this pecan caramel sauce can make even the simplest dessert look rich and glossy.
You can spike it with a little rum if you’d like.

Feel free to omit the pecan pieces altogether if you’d like a smooth sauce.
Thank you to the reader who shared her scrumptious family recipe with me.

Toasted Pecan Caramel Sauce Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup pecan halves, toasted
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 3/4 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tsp. cornstarch dissolved in 1 tsp. cold water
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 Tbsp. rum (optional)

Directions:

  1. Combine butter, brown sugar, molasses and cream in a saucepan and stir to combine.
  2. Bring to a gentle boil and stir until sugar dissolves.
  3. Whisk in cornstarch-water mixture and stir until mixture starts to thicken.
  4. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla, rum (if using) and pecans.

Serve over cake or ice cream.

One more thing…

If you’re in search of family-friendly food that’s easy to prepare, healthy and tastes good, then sign up to receive blog posts by email.




We’d love to send you our monthly newsletter too. Our Making Life Delicious newsletter includes cooking tips, menu ideas and featured recipes. Here’s the link to our monthly email sign-up form.