Brunch

Recipe—Strawberry Pop Tarts

Recipe—Strawberry Pop Tarts

Growing up, eating pop tarts was part of my morning school routine. They were quick and easy to throw in the toaster and chow down on as you were headed out the door. I thought they were the best! Now as a parent, I buy them for my son. Don’t go get all judgey on me here. He doesn’t eat them every day. I am a working parent with limited time in the morning and it is a child’s rite of passage to eat pop tarts. LOL

Recipe—Strawberry Pop Tarts

A couple of weeks ago I asked for a bite of his and I just have to say, they were not all that I had remembered them to be. Clearly my standards of quality food have changed over time. I started to think of what goes into a pop tart and realized I could easily make a copy cat version of my own. They were so simple and relatively quick to make. I literally just used refrigerated pie crust from the store and some strawberry jam and made a simple icing using powdered sugar mixed with a little water and vanilla. So basic and so easy!

It was fun to spend a lazy morning recreating something from my childhood and let me just tell you, they were so good, like way better than I would have ever imagined! Let’s be real, this is actually like eating pie for breakfast. The crust was so flaky and lite and the jam and frosting were the exact amount of sweet you would want for breakfast. Plus, they were just as good the next day and they looked super cute in my cake stand on the counter.

Next up, homemade toaster strudels!

Recipe—Strawberry Pop Tarts

Notes:

  • I was able to make a total of 8 finished pop tarts using the two pie crusts. I was able to cut out a total of 16 3” x 4” rectangles, 8 from each crust.
  • You can obviously use any flavor of jam you would like. I was a strawberry pop tart girl, so that’s what I went with. You do you.
  • The frosting will set on these within a couple of minutes of frosting so be sure and add sprinkles right after applying frosting to each..
  • Do not reheat your pop tarts by putting them in the toaster! They are delicious at room temperature, even the next day.

INGREDIENTS
1 package (2 sheets) of refrigerated piecrust at room temperature (I used Pillsbury)
flour (for dusting)
1 c seedless strawberry jam
1 c powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
water
sprinkles

STEPS

  • Cut out a rectangle template using cardstock or paper that is 3” x 4”. (You will use this as a template to cut out rectangles from the pie crust that are all the same shape and size.)
  • Preheat oven to 400º.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Dust a little flour over a large cutting board or work surface to help keep the pie crust from sticking when you are rolling it out.
  • Lay out one of your pie crusts on the floured surface and roll it out until it is 1/8” thick.
  • Place the cardstock rectangle template on the rolled-out pie crust and, using a knife, cut around the edges of it. Repeat this until you have gotten as many 3” x 4” rectangles as you can, transferring each one to the baking sheet as you finish them.
  • Take the scraps and roll them into a ball and roll that out to get more if you can. (I was able to get six initially and then rolled out the scraps to get two more, for a total of  eight.)
  • Place about 2 tablespoons of jam in the center of each rectangle and spread it out slightly leaving about 1/3” of clear space around all 4 edges. (If your jam is thick and hard to spread, warm it in the microwave for about 15 seconds and stir it.)
  • Roll out and cut the second pie crust in the same manner as you did the first placing the second batch of rectangles on top of the jam.
  • Use your fingers to gently press around the edges to help create a seal between the two layers of crust.
  • Next, use a fork to crimp around the outside edges and poke 3 sets of holes down the center. This will keep the jam from leaking out the edges.
  • Bake for 12–15 minutes until they are all a nice golden brown.
  • Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 3–5 minutes and then transfer them to a cooling rack to cool for another 10–15 minutes.
  • While the pop tarts are cooling, whisk together the powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons of water, and the vanilla. Add additional water a little bit at a time as needed until your frosting is slightly runny and whisk until there are no longer any clumps.
  • Spoon the frosting onto each pop tart and add sprinkles immediately. The frosting will set really quickly once put on the pop tart.
  • Serve and enjoy!
Snacks, Sweet Treats

Recipe—Funfetti Cake Batter Cookie Dip

Funfetti Cake Batter Cookie Dip

The other day I was going to be attending a pool party for one of my favorite munchkins. I knew there would be plenty of kids there and I wanted to bring a snack that all the kids would love and have fun eating. Well turns out the grownups liked this just as much as the little ones. This cookie dip was a HUGE hit! This is a cream cheese based dip blended with a scoop of dry cake mix giving it the true cake batter flavor. It was delicious! Super creamy and just the right amount of sweet. I’m guessing this will forever be a staple on our party menus.  It would be perfect for a birthday party or any type of social event, and I’m sure it will get people talking. This is by no means healthy, but sometimes you just need to relax and let the kids have a little fun enjoying a special treat. It’s all about moderation after all, not that you will be able to control yourself with this dip. So dive in, let loose, and enjoy this perfect youthful treat! I know you can’t resist.

Note: I served this dip with Nilla wafers but I know it would go great with graham crackers or animal crackers as well.

INGREDIENTS
1/2 c butter
8 oz cream cheese
1/2 c powdered sugar
1 cup dry funfetti cake mix
1 tsp vanilla
1/4–1/2 c milk
1/4 c sprinkles, plus more for garnish

STEPS

  • Melt the butter in the microwave and set aside to cool.
  • In a large mixing bowl beat together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and cake mix for 2 minutes.
  • Add in vanilla and cooled butter and continue beating for another 2 minutes.
  • Beat in the vanilla and then 1/4 cup of the milk. Add more milk as needed to reach desired consistency.
  • Fold in 1/4 cup of the sprinkles.
  • Transfer the dip to a small bowl for serving and garnish with additional sprinkles. Serve immediately with your favorite dippers or refrigerate until ready to serve. (Note: the dip will get very firm in the fridge so remove it 15–20 minutes before you plan on serving it to allow it to soften.)
Sweet Treats

Recipe—Sugar Cookie Bars

Last month we celebrated my son’s third birthday. I knew I wanted to send him to school with some sort of treats to share with all his friends. Well, his birthday is the day after Valentine’s Day so that week is already pretty hectic for me. I didn’t have tons of time to spend on baking and frosting individual mini-cupcakes like I wanted to. I needed something easy that I could make a lot of, and fast. I stumbled upon a recipe for sugar cookie bars. I knew they would be perfect! They had a cute festive look to them and were so easy to make. They turned out perfect! They were just the right size for a bunch of toddlers and I didn’t have to frost them all individually. These sugar cookie bars are perfect for any occasion. Have fun with different festive colored frostings and sprinkles. (I love sprinkles!)

COOKIE BAR INGREDIENTS
1/2 c butter, softened
1 c sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda

FROSTING INGREDIENTS
1/2 c butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt
2 c powdered sugar
2–3 tbsp milk
food coloring
sprinkles

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 375º.
  • Using an electric mixer beat together the sugar and butter until fluffy, about 2 minutes.
  • Beat in the eggs and vanilla making sure to mix well.
  • In a separate bowl combine the flour, salt, and baking soda and stir to combine.
  • Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the creamy mixture.
  • Line a xx” x xx” baking dish with parchment paper going both directions.
  • Press the cookie dough into the lined baking dish.
  • Bake for 12–14 minutes.
  • Allow cookie bars to cool completely.
  • Using an electric mixer beat together the butter, vanilla, salt, and powdered sugar until well combined.
  • Gradually add in the milk until your frosting reaches the desired consistency. (If it becomes too runny just add in a bit more powdered sugar.
  • Once your frosting reaches desired consistency beat in the food coloring.
  • Spread the cookie bars with the frosting and top with sprinkles.
  • Place in the refrigerator for 1 hour and use a pizza wheel to cut into squares with ease.

Sweet Treats

Recipe—Confetti Cake Batter Cookies

Awhile back I posted a recipe for lemon crackle cookies. It was a cookie recipe that is primarily made from a box of cake mix. I love the concept of taking cake batter and sprucing it up with a few extra ingredients to make one heck of a fabulous cookie These types of cookies always come out really light and super moist and best of all they are quick and easy to make. Well ‘tis the season for complete chaos and busy schedules so what better time to share a recipe for super quick and scrumptious confetti cake batter cookies. I used red and green sprinkles to make them festive for Christmas but keep this recipe in mind throughout the year. Just change the sprinkle color for the appropriate holiday. Perhaps pink and red for Valentine’s Day?

INGREDIENTS
1-18.25 oz box of white cake mix
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
1/3 c vegetable oil
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2–3/4 c sprinkles

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • In a large bowl mix together the dry cake mix and baking powder.
  • Whisk together the eggs, oil, and vanilla.
  • Add the egg mixture to the cake mixture and stir until all ingredients are combined.
  • Fold in the sprinkles but be sure not to over mix or the dye will stain the batter.
  • Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or grease it.
  • Drop 1” balls of dough onto the baking sheet leaving approximately 2” apart.
  • Bakes cookies for 9–10 minutes making sure they don’t brown.
  • Allow the cookies to cool on the sheet for about 3 minutes.
  • Use a spatula to transfer the cookies to a cutting board or cooling rack.