Oatmeal Brown Sugar Coffee Cake with Pecan Streusel

Servings: 12 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 55 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes

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oatmeal brown sugar coffee cake is moist and wholesome

Oatmeal Brown Sugar Coffee Cake is an old-fashioned coffee cake with wholesome substance.

I buy rolled oats in 8 kg bags. We eat porridge pretty much every morning so buying is bulk is the simplest way to keep the cupboard stocked.

I love how porridge is warming and sticks to your ribs, but there’s also something about the texture that is especially appealing. When I was growing up my dad loved cream of wheat but I always preferred breakfast food with more oomph. So porridge it is.

oatmeal brown sugar coffee cake is moist and wholesome

It’s my love of oatmeal that drew me to this recipe in the first place. In fact, may be I should have called this recipe porridge cake. With its comforting texture and feeling of substance, this is a coffee cake that stays with you. It’s earthy and wholesome.

oatmeal brown sugar coffee cake is moist and wholesome

This recipe is adapted from the Debora Madison classic, Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. It’s an enormous book full of excellent recipes with a particularly good collection of baking recipes. (I’ll soon share her recipe for buckwheat flapjacks.)

Oatmeal Brown Sugar Coffee Cake Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 ½ cups boiling water
  • ½ cup butter
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt

Pecan Streusel

  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. flour
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. nutmeg
  • 3 Tbsp. cold butter
  • 2/3 cup chopped pecans

Instructions:

  1. Butter a 9”x 13” pan or line it with parchment paper
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 F
  3. Pour boiling water over the oats and set them aside to cool.
  4. Cream butter and sugars until light. Beat in molasses then eggs, one at a time.
  5. Stir in vanilla, cinnamon and then moist oatmeal.
  6. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Using a wooden spoon or rubber scraper, stir dry ingredients into wet. Combine well but don’t over mix.
  7. Mix together streusel ingredients with a fork or pastry blender.
  8. Scrape batter into prepared pan and sprinkle over the streusel.
  9. Bake for about 35 minutes, until a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached.

 

 

 

Wholesome snacks: Naturally Sweetened Coconut Mounds

Servings: 18 serving(s)

Prep time: 60 minutes

Total time: 60 minutes

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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

 

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Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies

Servings: 24 cookies serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 30 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

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carrot cake whoopie pies

This is one of those “delicious with the nutritious” recipes

It’s a cookie, but it’s filled with lots of healthy stuff like vegetables, old-fashioned rolled oats, a little bit of flax and unsweetened coconut. You can make them a bit healthier if you swap our some of the flour for whole wheat or spelt flour. And you could always reduce the sugar a bit.

carrot cake whoopie pies

If your kids like to snack on cookies this recipe is a good choice.

Carrot cake cookies have a great oatmeal cookie texture and are on the soft side. They’re delicious on their own buy can easily be turned into a special treat if you sandwich them with frosting to make Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies. (You could also sandwich them with peanut butter, jam or a bit of fruit compote.)

Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies Recipe

Makes about 24 cookies

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 ¼ cups flour, spooned in (can use half spelt or whole wheat)
  • 2 Tbsp. ground flax or wheat germ
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • ¾ cup grated carrots

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl cream the butter with the sugars and salt. Beat in the egg then the molasses.
  2. In another bowl whisk the flour, flax, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon.
  3. Add flour mixture to creamed mixture and stir until just combined.
  4. Stir in the oats, coconut and carrots. Combine well and chill for 30 minutes.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 F. Scoop dough by the tablespoonful onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Place about 1 ½ inches apart.
  6. Bake for 12-15 minutes.

Nutritional info: Per cookie.

  • Calories: 121
  • Fat: 6.2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.8 g
  • Cholesterol: 18.6 mg
  • Sodium: 89 mg
  • Carbs: 15 g
  • Sugar: 7.4 g
  • Potassium: 80 mg
  • Calcium: 18.4 g
  • Vitamin A: 59 g
  • Protein: 1.8 g
  • Fibre: 1.1 g

Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies

When cooled, sandwich Carrot Cake Cookies with Molasses Frosting:

  • 2 Tbsp. soft butter
  • ½ Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 1 Tbsp. milk or cream
  • Enough icing sugar to make mixture spreadable
  1. Cream butter and molasses. Stir in the vanilla and half of the milk then ½ cup of icing sugar.
  2. Add remaining milk and another ½ cup icing sugar.
  3. Continue adding icing sugar 2 Tbsp. at a time until you get a nice spreadable consistency.

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carrot cake whoopie pies

Easy Apple Spice Cake makes a wholesome snack

Servings: 6-8 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

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Some of the best cakes are muffin-simple to make, like this easy apple spice cake (a moist applesauce cake).

Easy apple spice cake is a moist and wholesome

Easy Apple Spice Cake is “muffin-simple”.

I think that cakes often get a bad rap. They have this reputation for being a little time consuming to make and suitable for Sunday dinners and special occasions only.

But some of the best cakes out there are muffin-simple. Made with real butter and good stone-ground flour, they’ve got flavour to spare and have no need to be dressed with frosting.

Plus, there is only one easy pan to clean, not a dozen muffin cups.

Easy Apple spice cake is a moist and wholesome

Easy Apple Spice Cake is delicious cake that’s a cinch to mix up and makes a wholesome treat. No occasion required.

I make this apple spice cake with stone ground flour and homemade apple sauce but it works just as well with conventional white flour and store-bought apple sauce.

It’s actually a gingerbread, sweetened with molasses and lightly spiced with ginger and cinnamon. As gingerbreads go this one is on the gentle side, denser than hot water gingerbreads but mild in flavour. If you use stone ground flour it’s sweet, nutty flavour will shine through.

Easy Apple spice cake is a moist and wholesome

Serve this apple spice cake as a snack cake, tuck it in your kids’ lunchbox or sprinkle it with icing sugar and serve it as a dessert.

It’s that kind of cake – forever adaptable to the occasion.

Easy Apple Spice Cake

  • 2/3 cup sugar (can be reduce to 1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce (make your own from local apples)
  • 1/3 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 eggs well beaten
  • ½ cup soft butter
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ginger or nutmeg
  • 2 cups flour (stone ground spelt or whole white, if you have it)
  1. In one bowl place sifted dry ingredients.
  2. In another bowl beat applesauce, molasses, eggs, and soft butter.
  3. Combine wet and dry ingredients.
  4. Beat well by hand or with an electric beater for 3 minutes.
  5. Pour into greased and floured 9″ round or square cake pan and bake at 350°F for 30-35 minutes, until a tester comes out clean.
  6. Cool 10 minutes then remove from pan to finish cooking.
  7. To serve, dust with icing sugar and cut into wedges.

Tip: line the pan with parchment paper for extra easy removal from pan.

If you love snack cakes you might like our whole wheat apple sauce cake recipe

Whole wheat apple sauce cake is wholesome and delicious

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Wholesome snacks for kids – a free e-book

Wholesome Snacks, a free e-book featuring 16 recipes for healthy homemade snack food

Will I spend the rest of my life craving new pencils and pens at the end of August?

It’s warm and sunny. We’re still mowing the lawn. My tomatoes have yet to ripen. It is very much summer. But, I keep thinking about September. I’d say this preoccupation was a little cruel, if it weren’t for the fact that I get a nostalgic sort of thrill each time I think of September.

I can’t be the only one who has this kind of seasonal anticipation. Am I?

Yes, we have kids in school but even before our kids came along we got into back-to-school mode each year towards the end of summer (although we had left school behind a decade earlier.) At the same time, the back-to-school flyers drive me crazy. They remind me of the work it takes to get back into the swing of things. I prefer to focus on the pleasure of new beginnings. Sure there is a little bit of dread (we’ll be busy with kids’ activities) but the newness of it all is exciting.

And there are ways to simplify the routine, which brings me to our new e-book full of healthy snack recipes.

Wholesome snacks for kids - a free e-book featuring 16 recipes for lunchbox and afterschool snacks

Wholesome snacks for kids

A free e-book featuring 16 recipes for lunchbox and afterschool snacks

Part of getting back into the swing of things is baking more, and planning snacks for school lunches, our lunches and afterschool. To make it easier to get set for the fall routine we have gathered 16 recipes for muffins, cookies, bars and brownies into a convenient e-book. These are wholesome grab-and-go snacks, made healthier with nourishing ingredients. There is something for everyone, including gluten-free options, snacks that go with breakfast, and brownies with a healthy twist.

They’re satisfying snacks that pack well, travel well and freeze well.

Everything you need for homemade convenience.

This is a free e-book in a simple PDF format for easy viewing, downloading and printing. No e-reader required. Download our free e-book: Wholesome Snacks for Hungry Kids

Wholesome snacks for kids - a free e-book featuring 16 recipes for lunchbox and afterschool snacks

Visit our library of free e-books, download our free e-books, print them, share them with friends.

Katie’s Fat Molasses Cookies – big, soft & comforting

Servings: 24 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 30 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Take me to the recipe

The texture of these cookies is lovely and light, almost a little biscuit like. And they’re not too sweet.

There’s nothing I love better than hearing the stories behind your favourite molasses recipes. It takes me back to my own childhood kitchen and makes me feel welcomed into your home. This recipe for Katie’s Fat molasses cookies came from Leone Campbell, who recalled the day 48 years ago that she first tasted them.

Here is Leone’s story:

“Reading through my recipe box I came across my recipe for molasses cookies that I have been baking for over 48 years. As a young woman I had walked over to visit my older aunt and as I entered the house was delightfully welcomed by the smell of molasses. Her housekeeper, Katie, had just taken a pan of cookies from the oven. I was invited to sit for a cup of tea and a “fat molasses cookie”. I immediately asked for the recipe and “Katie” happily shared it with me.

Forty eight years later it is still my family’s favorite and has been present on many car trips as we travelled through the Maritimes visiting family and friends. Our travel snack has always been fat molasses cookies and cheese—never McDonald’s!!! Now my grandchildren are baking and eating them using the same recipe and silently thanking “Katie” and Crosby’s.”

The texture of these cookies is lovely and light, almost a little biscuit like. And they’re not too sweet.  Yes, great with a slice of cheese or on their own. Take care not to roll them too thin (for me that meant keeping the dough twice as thick as usual). That’s the key to the addictive texture. And I suppose why they’re called “fat” cookies.

The texture of these cookies is lovely and light, almost a little biscuit like. And they’re not too sweet.

I made big fat rounds and my daughter (she’s 9) used her half of the dough to make Halloween cut-out cookies for the kids in our neighbourhood .

Katie’s Fat Molasses Cookies

A molasses memory from Leone Campbell

  • 4 3/4 cups of flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3 teaspoons ginger or cinnamon
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  1. In a large bowl cream the butter, sugar and eggs.
  2. In another bowl combine dry ingredients.
  3. Add dry to creamed mixture, alternating with molasses and milk.
  4. Roll or pat out on a lightly floured surface, keeping the dough thick (up to 1 cm).
  5. Cut in favourite shapes.
  6. Bake 375 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes (watch closely after 10 minutes)

These freeze beautifully, if they last that long.

What’s your family’s favourite cookie recipe?

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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.