Candy Corn Pretzel Bites

I have a confession to make. I have a weakness for Candy Corn. I usually try to make it until at least October before giving in and buying a bag. This year I didn’t quite make it. The third time of coming across it at the grocery store had me tossing it in the cart. Of course I justified it by saying that I had to do some research and come up with some fun ideas for the first issue of Homemaker’s Hutch magazine…. but who am I kidding? I really just wanted candy corn.

A twist on the super easy-to-make Chocolate Pretzel Bites, these are perfect for a Halloween or Thanksgiving party. The recipe below is for 24 pretzel bites, but to be honest, I just grab a bag of pretzels, a bag of Hershey’s chocolate kisses and a bag of candy corn and work away until I run out of one of the ingredients. Of course there’s plenty of sampling going on while you assemble them … especially when children or husbands are involved :)

Candy Corn Pretzel Bites
 
Prep time
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Serves: 24
Ingredients
  • 24 small pretzels
  • 24 Hershey's Chocolate Kisses (unwrapped)
  • 24 pieces of candy corn
Instructions
  1. Arrange the pretzels on a non-stick cookie sheet. (For easy cleanup, use some parchment paper). Place a Hershey’s kiss in the middle of each pretzel. Put them in 175 F oven for about 2-4 minutes, or until the chocolate has softened, but not fully melted. Remove the cookie sheet from the oven and top with a candy corn and press down. Allow to cool and serve.

 

Candy Corn Pretzel Bites

Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies

This is my favorite cookie recipe. How could you not love something that’s full of butter, brown sugar, vanilla and of course plenty of chocolate chips.

I make a batch of these for our cookie jar at least once every two weeks. They always turn out great and are a family favorite. Perfect for after-school snacks, lunch boxes or as a simple weekday dessert. Of course for us adults they also go really well with a cup of coffee after you drop the kids off at school.

From the Weekday Cookie Recipes Kindle Cookbook
www.HillbillyHousewife.com/cookiebook

Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe
 
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Ingredients
  • 2 sticks butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups self-rising flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, mix together the butter, sugar and vanilla until well blended. In another bowl whisk together the flour and salt. Add to the butter mixture and mix well. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  3. Drop by spoonfuls onto an ungreased baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes.

 

Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies Ready to Eat

Coconut Cookie Recipe

These delicious cookies are full of coconut and vanilla with a little rum for flavor and of course plenty of sugar to make them sweet and crunchy. Don’t they look beautiful, sprinkled with a little extra coconut? 

I usually make the dough for this right before picking my daughter up from school. By the time we are home and settled in, the dough is chilled enough for them to bake up perfectly.

From the Weekend Cookie Recipes  Kindle Cookbook

www.HillbillyHousewife.com/cookiebook

Easy Coconut Cookies
 
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Ingredients
  • 3 cups flour
  • 5 cups sugar
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon light rum
  • 6 cups shredded coconut
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together with an electric mixer. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 60 minutes.
  2. While preheating oven to 375 degrees, line a baking sheet with wax paper.
  3. Roll the dough into 1 inch balls and place them 2 inches apart on the baking sheet.
  4. Bake until browned around the edges and on the bottom (approximately 10 minutes).

 

My favorite Coconut Cookie Recipe

Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe Without Flour

With just 4 ingredients (peanut butter, sugar, egg and baking soda), this recipe couldn’t be simpler. Yes, you read that right, there’s no flour in this cookie. It all works out beautifully though and they are a lot of fun to make with the kids.

These are some of the simplest cookies you’ll ever bake and the best peanut butter cookies you’ve ever tasted. Trust the recipe.

Since there is no flour in these peanut butter cookies, the are a great naturally gluten-free alternative to the traditional version of this popular cookie.

From the Weekend Cookie Recipes  Kindle Cookbook
www.HillbillyHousewife.com/cookiebook

Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup sugar + additional for coating
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
Instructions
  1. While preheating oven to 350 degrees, grease a baking sheet.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix peanut butter and 1 cup sugar until thoroughly combined. In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg and then add to peanut butter mixture. Add the baking soda and mix until thoroughly combined.
  3. Roll the dough into balls and coat in sugar. Drop by spoonfuls onto cookie sheet, about inch-and-half apart. Using a fork, make a criss-cross pattern in the dough.
  4. Bake for about 10 minutes or until light golden brown.

 

Peanut Butter Cookies made without flour

 

Yummy Pecan Chews

These sinfully scrumptious bars combine all the elements of cookie and candy for a mouthwatering treat you won’t forget!
Crust Ingredients

  •  1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  •  1/3 cup powdered sugar
  •  1/4 cup cornstarch
  •   1/2 teaspoon salt
  •  3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

Topping Ingredients

  •  1 1/4 cups (packed) golden brown sugar
  •  1/2 cup light corn syrup
  •  1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  •   4 cups coarsely chopped pecans (about 14 1/2 ounces)
  •  1/2 cup whipping cream
  •  2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  •   Yields 32 servings

To make crust:
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Using aluminum foil, line a 13”x9”x2” pan, adding about an inch of foil to hang over the edges. Then, lightly butter the foil. Use a food processor to mix together flour, cornstarch, powdered sugar, and salt. Lastly, add butter to mixture and mix until it begins to combine together. Evenly press dough into your baking pan. Bake crust for approximately 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove pan from oven and prepare the topping while it cools. Lower oven temp to 325 degrees F.

To make topping:
Mix together brown sugar, butter, and corn syrup in a medium saucepan using medium high temperature until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture has come to a boil; let boil for one minute. Stir in cream and pecans; boil mixture until it has slightly thickened, approx. three minutes. Add vanilla. Drizzle the topping over the crust.
Bake pecan-topped crust until caramel has darkened and is bubbling thickly, around 20 minutes. Place pan on rack and cool inside of pan until topping hardens.
Take out of pan by lifting foil and transfer to a cutting board. With a sharp, sturdy knife, cut crust into 1 1/2×1-inch sections in the shape of diamonds. (You can make these tasty treats one week ahead of time. Wrap in sheets of wax paper and store at room temperature in an airtight container.)

Dessert Bar

Peanut Brittle Recipe

My husband loves peanut brittle… it’s his favorite kind of candy. I don’t make it very often, but since we’re getting into the Holiday spirit, I thought why not whip up a batch. It’s easy to make, and tastes so much better homemade. Give it a try and let me know how you like it.

This would also make a cute gift. Make up a couple of batches and put the broken off pieces of brittle into small Christmas Tins. Perfect gift for neighbors, teachers and the likes.

Peanut Brittle Recipe
 
Recipe type: Candy
Ingredients
  • 1½ C. Salted Peanuts
  • 2¾ C. Sugar
  • ⅔ C. Water
  • ½ Stick Unsalted Butter
Instructions
  1. Prepare a 9x13 baking dish by lining it with foil and greasing the foil.
  2. In a medium sized saucepan, mix the butter, sugar and water. Heat for approximately 25 minutes over medium heat until the mixture becomes a thick golden-brown syrup; stir often.
  3. Slowly, mix the peanuts in with the mixture until all are completely covered with the syrup.
  4. Pour the peanut mixture into the baking dish and spread it out evenly, preferably in one layer.
  5. Let the peanuts sit until thoroughly cooled. Then, break into medium sized pieces and place in an airtight container.

 

Peanut BrittleHomemade Christmas Gifts and MoreWould you like to steer clear of the holiday shopping crowds? You can with this guide to Homemade Christmas Gifts and More.

Making Homemade Christmas gifts is one way to actually enjoy the process of gift-giving. Not only are homemade gifts and decorations frugal, they’re more fun!

We don’t have to rush out to the mall to shop for Christmas when we have ideas for creating gifts right at home. Take time to enjoy your holiday season. Click on and download now to start planning your frugal AND fun Christmas.

www.hillbillyhousewife.com/christmasbook

Muffin Pan Brownie Bites

Whenever I send my husband and daughter to the store, they come back with a pack of brownie bites. I’ve finally gotten the hint that they both like these small brownies with plenty of corners. With school about to start up again (and thus the need for lunch box treats and after – school snack) this is the perfect time to experiment and come up with my own homemade version.

4.8 from 4 reviews
Homemade Brownie Bites
 
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Recipe type: Snack
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 1 stick margarine
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup self-rising flour
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • non-stick cooking spray
Instructions
  1. Start by preheating your oven to 350F. Spay a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Melt the margarine (either in a small sauce pan or in the microwave in a small bowl). Stir in the cocoa powder and then the sugar.
  3. Add the eggs and beat them in well. I use a handmixer for all this, but a whisk and some elbow grease work too.
  4. Mix in the vanilla extract and then the flour. Mix just until everything is well combined. You don't want to overbeat your batter.
  5. Pour it into your prepared muffin tins and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the brownie comes out clean.

You can make these brownie bites out of any brownie recipe or even a store-bought mix if you’re so inclined. The recipe above is the one I use most often these days. It’s just as easy to use as a box from the store and tastes better. Feel free to add to this basic recipe. I’m sure it would be yummy with some chopped walnuts or chocolate chips mixed into the batter.

I fill the muffin tins about half full of batter and can fit the whole recipe into a regular muffin tin with 12 muffins. For thinner muffins, spread it out in two batches of 12 muffins and check them for doneness sooner. I’m sure using a mini muffin tin would be fun too.

Ice Cream Tacos – April Fool’s Day Treat

Here’s another fun dessert idea that isn’t quite what it appears to be. Bake the shells ahead of time and then have the kids help put these ice cream tacos together.

Ingredients:

1/3 cup melted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup honey
3/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp. water
4-5 drops green food coloring
1/2 gallon chocolate ice cream
1 cup cool whip
1 cup coconut, flaked
Red M&M minis
Yellow M&M minis
Orange M&M minis

Directions:

Draw two 3 inch circles on a piece of parchment paper (make sure to use a pencil). Place the parchment paper, pencil mark side down, on a baking sheet and set aside.

Beat the butter, brown sugar and honey, in a large bowl, until well blended. Now add the flour and mix well (it’s going to be thick). Spread 1 Tbsp. of the batter over each of the circles you drew on the parchment paper.

Bake for 6-7 minutes or until golden brown at 350 degrees. Let cool for 2 minutes. Now loosen each of the cookies and curl around a rolling pin to create a taco shell. Let cool completely before removing and placing on a wire rack. Continue this until the batter is gone.

Combine the food coloring and water in a resealable bag; add the flaked coconut. Close the bag tightly and shake to tint.

Use the ice cream to fill the taco shells. Add the coconut, M&M’s and whipped cream to top the tacos.

April Fool's Day CookbookFor more fun April Fool’s Day recipes, grab a copy of my latest Kindle Cookbook “April Fool’s Day – Fool Me Once, Feed Me Twice

April Fool’s Day is a great time to let your inner jokester out. And while you were probably taught to never play with your food, you can make an exception today ;-) Here are some safe, fun food tricks to fool your family and friends including:

  • Melty Mallow Fried Egg
  • Bottoms Up Glass of Jell-o
  • Candy Hamburgers
  • Goofy Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
  • Cake Con Carne
  • Celebration Mini Meal Surprise
  • Butter Cream Potato Frosting
  • Silly Strawberry Whipped Potato Frosting

http://www.hillbillyhousewife.com/aprilbook

Mini Eggs & Bacon For Dessert – April Fool’s Day Recipe

April first is almost here. I like to have a little fun with my family, by surprising them with some food that isn’t what it seems to be. Here’s a simple little dessert or sweet snack for the kids. It’s bacon and eggs made from candy.

Eggs:
3 Tbsp. chocolate chips (white)
12 M&Ms (yellow)
Bacon:
1 Tootsie roll midget candy
1 caramel square candy

To make the eggs: melt the chocolate chips and once melted put in a Ziploc bag; snip off a corner of the Ziploc bag.

On a sheet of waxed paper, squeeze nickel sized portions of the chocolate chips onto it. Press a M&M (letter side down) into the center of each of the melted chocolate chip portions you just put on the waxed paper. Let cool.

To make the bacon: Remove the wrappers from the caramel and tootsie roll candies. In a microwave safe bowl, melt them for 4 seconds. Flatten each candy piece and then pres them together.

Now halve the candy and then press and stack the pieces, alternating layers.

Cut a 1/4 inch piece from the stack you just put together. Make a bacon strip by pinching and stretching the piece lengthwise. Cut it in half. You can create bacon ripples by gently bending the edges.

April Fool's Day CookbookFor more fun April Fool’s Day recipes, grab a copy of my latest Kindle Cookbook “April Fool’s Day – Fool Me Once, Feed Me Twice

April Fool’s Day is a great time to let your inner jokester out. And while you were probably taught to never play with your food, you can make an exception today ;-) Here are some safe, fun food tricks to fool your family and friends including:

  • Melty Mallow Fried Egg
  • Bottoms Up Glass of Jell-o
  • Candy Hamburgers
  • Goofy Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
  • Cake Con Carne
  • Celebration Mini Meal Surprise
  • Butter Cream Potato Frosting
  • Silly Strawberry Whipped Potato Frosting

http://www.hillbillyhousewife.com/aprilbook

Chocolate Ginger Clusters

These are great for serving at the holidays, and make good gifts too.

Chocolate Ginger Clusters

• 1 and 1/2 cups chocolate chips (milk or dark)
• 1 TBSP butter
• 1 cup toasted chopped nuts (I used pecans)
• 1/3 cup chopped dried apricots
• 6 pieces crystallized ginger, chopped

Cover baking sheet with waxed paper.
Add Chocolate chips and butter to microwaveable bowl, microwave on medium-low for about 5 minutes, stirring after 2 and 4 minutes.
Add dried apricots and ginger. Drop onto waxed paper, Refrigerate until firm. Store in tins in cool dry place. Can be frozen.

Yield : 3 dozen pieces

Tip: To send as gift in mail, buy 2 ice-cube trays with covers, at the $ store. Spray with non-stick baking spray and add the mixture to the trays, cool, add covers, wrap and mail. Package will be uniform size, and candies will be protected from breakage.

American Way Dessert Bars

If you’re planning desserts to be served at your Memorial Day or 4th of July picnic, it’s only natural you’ll want to find something with red, white, and blue colored ingredients. Naturally, blueberries and strawberries immediately come to mind. Not only do they fit the bill color-wise, but they’re also in season.

When shopping for fresh blueberries and strawberries always be sure to turn the container they are packaged in over to ensure there are no bruised or molded fruit. Most berries will have a light white powder-like coating, also known as bloom on them when packaged. Bloom on berries is what seals the moisture into the berry so don’t worry about that.

  • 1/2 C of butter
  • 3/4 C graham crackers, crushed fine
  • 1/2 C of flour
  • 1/2 C of coconut, flaked
  • 1/2 C pecans, ground
  • 12 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 C + 2/3 C of sugar, divided
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 T of milk
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 C of blueberries
  • 1 C strawberries, chopped

Set oven temperature to 350 degrees.
Lightly spray a 13×9 inch baking pan with a non stick cooking spray.
Place the butter in a saucepan over medium heat, and cooking the butter until it turns the color of light brown sugar.
Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
Place the crushed graham crackers into a mixing bowl, add the flour, coconut and pecans to the crackers and toss to combine.
Stir in 1/4 C of the sugar until completely combined.
Pour the melted butter into the bowl and stir until completely combined.
Press the mixture into the bottom only of the prepared baking pan.
Bake the crust for 8 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove the crust and set aside to cool.
Place the cream cheese and remaining sugar into a mixing bowl, and beat the mixture on medium speed until it becomes smooth.
Add the eggs, milk and vanilla to the cream cheese mixture, and beat on medium speed until completely combined.
Spread the mixture evenly over the slightly cooled crust.
Sprinkle the blueberries and strawberries over the top.
Bake 18 minutes or until the center is set.
Remove and allow to slightly cool on a wire rack.
Cover and refrigerate for 3 hours then cut into bars before serving.
Makes 32 bars

Strawberry Streusel Oat Bars

These are pretty and tasty bars that can be served for breakfast, a snack or even as a Mother’s Day dinner dessert.  You can also try using blueberries, raspberries, or a combination of strawberries and rhubarb.

1 1/2 C quick cooking rolled oats
1 C + 2 T of flour, divided
3/4 C brown sugar, packed
3/4 C butter
1/4 C sugar
1/2 t + 1/4 t ground ginger, divided
2 C fresh strawberries, sliced
3/4 C powdered sugar
3 t honey

Set the oven temperature at 350 degrees and allow the oven to preheat.
Line an 8×8 pan with foil extending the foil over the edges of the pan.
Place the oats into a mixing bowl.
Add 1 C of the flour and the brown sugar and toss to combine.
Use a pastry blender and cut in the butter until the mixture resembles small peas.
Remove 1 C of the mixture and set aside.
Press the remaining oat mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan.
Bake 25 minutes or until nicely browned.
Place the sugar in a mixing bowl.
Add the 2 T of flour and 1/2 t of the ground ginger.
Stir in the strawberry slices until well coated.
Spread the strawberry mixture over the hot crust.
Sprinkle the top evenly with the reserved crust mixture.
Return to the oven and bake 32 minutes or until the topping has turned a golden brown and the filling is bubbly around the edges.
Remove and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
Sift the powdered sugar into a large bowl.
Add the remaining ginger and the honey and stir until blended together well.
Drizzle the icing over the top of the streusel bars before cutting.

Makes 16 bars

 

Polverones – Cinnamon Cookies

EASY RECIPE

1 cup butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2-1/2 cups sifted all purpose flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
…………….
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

HEAT oven to 350 degrees. LINE a cookie sheet with foil and set aside.

COMBINE the butter, sugar and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Use the electric mixer on high speed to cream the ingredients together (about 2 minutes).

ADD the flour, cinnamon and salt and mix on low speed for 1 minute.

SHAPE the dough into a ball and cover with plastic wrap. CHILL the dough for 2 hours in the refrigerator or in the freezer for 30 minutes.

ROLL the cookie dough into 1-inch balls and place on the cookie sheet 1-inch apart.

BAKE on the center oven rack for 15 minutes. REMOVE from the oven and cool the cookies on a wire rack.

Once the cookies are cool, ROLL them in a powdered sugar and cinnamon mixture.

MAKES…..48 cookies

NOTES: I left the dough overnight in the refrigerator. After letting it set on the counter until it reached room temperature, the dough was very soft.

I used the smallest dipper to make the dough balls…..1″ diameter.

When cooked, the cookies do not taste very good. After rolling them in the cinnamon/powdered sugar mixture and letting them set overnight in a container, they are delicious…..melt in your mouth. (If you like the taste of cinnamon, these cookies are for you.)

I saved the leftover cinnamon/powdered sugar mixture to be used with oatmeal, cereal, and etc.

Enjoy.

This recipe is on a 5 lb. package of HEB All Purpose Flour.

Easy Whoopie Pie Gobs

  • 1 cake mix (any chocolate cake mix or devil’s food chocolate cake mix)
  • 1 (3-ounce) package of instant chocolate pudding
  • Whoopie Pie Filling (see recipe below)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or lightly grease the cookie sheets.

In a large bowl, prepare cake mix according to directions on box, but using 3/4 cup of water instead of listed amount. Beat 1 minute.

Add instant chocolate pudding dry mix and beat 1 more minute.

Drop batter by the 1/4 cup (to make 18 cakes) onto prepared baking sheets. With the back of a spoon spread batter into 4-inch circles, leaving approximately 2 inches between each cake.

Bake 15 minutes or until they are firm to the touch. Remove from oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.

Make Whoopie Pie Filling:

Whoopie Pie Filling:

  • 1 cup solid vegetable shortening*
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered (confectioner’s) sugar
  • 2 cups Marshmallow Fluff**
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Whoopie pies, traditional dessert from New England* Butter may be substituted for all or part of the vegetable shortening, although traditional Whoopie Pies are made with vegetable shortening only

When the cakes are completely cool, spread the flat side (bottom) of one chocolate cake with a generous amount of filling. Top with another cake, pressing down gently to distribute the filling evenly. Repeat with all cookies to make 9 pies. Let finished whoopie pies completely cool before wrapping.

Wrap whoopie pies individually in plastic wrap, or place them in a single layer on a platter (do not stack them, as they tend to stick).

To freeze, wrap each whoopie pie in plastic wrap. Loosely pack them in a plastic freezer container and cover. To serve, defrost the wrapped whoopie pies in the refrigerator.

Makes 9 large whoopie pies.