Cotton Candy Meringue Nests

cotton candy meringue cookies

cotton candy meringue cookies

Today’s post is going to be so quick and easy I am almost embarrassed to share. These easy cotton candy meringue cookies took about 10 minutes of prep time and 1 hour of cook time. Seriously one of the easiest treats I’ve made in ages.

I was decorating my little brother’s birthday cake when Patrick’s daughter wondered into the kitchen. Lately, the kids have been so wrapped up in Pokemon that they really haven’t asked to help out in the kitchen. So when Sophia asked if we could make cookies for dessert I needed to find something fast and easy.

cotton candy meringue cookies

These meringue cookies were inspired by the sprinkles sitting on the counter in all honesty. I had never made a meringue cookie before, but I knew they were fairly simple. So into the bowl I tossed my egg whites, cream of tartar, and sugar. Boom and done.

So here it is… the easiest cookie recipe… ever.

Cotton Candy Meringue Nests
Author: 
Recipe type: cotton candy meringue cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 cookies
 
Easy meringue cookies that taste a lot like cotton candy!
Ingredients
  • For the cookie
  • 4 egg whites at room temp
  • ⅛ tsp of cream of tartar
  • ¾ cup of sugar
  • 2 tbsp of vanilla extract
  • food coloring if you choose
  • sprinkles
  • For the frosting
  • ½ cup of unsalted butter
  • 2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp of heavy cream
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees and line a baking sheet with a mat or parchment paper.
  2. In a clean dry mixing bowl whip the egg whites and cream of tartar.
  3. After about 2 minutes slowly add in the sugar.
  4. When the mix begins to resemble whipped cream add in the extract and food colorings.
  5. Whip until you can turn the bowl upside down and the egg whites stay put!
  6. Fill a pastry bag or ziplock with the egg whites and pipe onto the pan.
  7. I made little nests.
  8. Add sprinkles.
  9. Bake for one hour until firm and crisp.
  10. Do not let brown.
  11. Let cool for 20 minutes.
  12. For the frosting:
  13. Whip the ingredients on medium high for about 5 minutes then pipe into the meringue nests.
  14. Sprinkle again :p

cotton candy meringue cookies

You can definitely skip the buttercream, but I think that adds to the cotton candy flavor. Feel free to change up the shape too! These are so fun to make and easy to customize! Perfect melt in your mouth goodness.

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Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies

triple chocolate chip cookies

triple chocolate chip cookies

One of the best parts of only giving myself one cheat day a week is having 6 days to brainstorm these concoctions. I’m now heading into my 4th week of eating clean and I am wishing I had thought to remake these cookies. Triple chocolate chip cookies are now a thing in our house. These cookies measure about 4 1/2 inches wide. They are soft, chewy, and oooooh so chocolatey.

triple chocolate chip cookies

I drizzled dark chocolate and white chocolate on alternating cookies. The kids were skeptical at first. They have a hard time believing there is white chocolate. According to them chocolate is brown and anything white is icing. I say that is fair. The white chocolate drizzle does add a really nice vanilla flavor where the dark chocolate adds enough bitterness to break up the triple chocolate inside the cookie.

triple chocolate chip cookies

I scrolled through dozens of chocolate chip cookie recipes online that were quoted as “the best”. I know everyone has a different idea of what “the best” is. Patrick thinks a cookie that is super chewy and close to cake-like with lots of melty chocolate is the best. I personally love something a little closer to the classic Nestle recipe. Slightly crispy on the outside and very soft in the middle.

triple chocolate chip cookies

These cookies have the slightest crunch on the very outside, but the rest of the cookie is so soft and soooo packed with chocolate. Using dark brown sugar helps give almost a toffee like flavor which is definitely my favorite!

triple chocolate chip cookiestriple chocolate chip cookies

 

 

Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies
Recipe type: Cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ingredients
  • 3 cups of chocolate chips- milk, semi sweet, and dark
  • 2 eggs at room temp
  • 2 sticks of unsalted butter room temp
  • 1 cup of dark brown sugar
  • ½ cup of granulated sugar
  • 2¼ cups of AP flour
  • ¼ cup of cornstarch
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 2 tbsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp of water
Instructions
  1. Cream together the butter and sugars until pale and fluffy.
  2. Add the eggs 1 at a time.
  3. Mix in the vanilla.
  4. In a mixing bowl whisk the dry ingredients.
  5. Pour into the butter mixture mixing at low speed.
  6. Mix on low until fully incorporated.
  7. Add the in the tbsp of water.
  8. Fold in the chocolate.
  9. Roll 3 tbsp of dough into uniform size dough balls.
  10. Freeze for 30 minutes.
  11. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  12. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon baking sheet.
  13. Bake about 5 cookies at a time for 10 minutes or until center has just barely set.

If you are trying to eat healthy- I am so sorry! BUT once you try these triple chocolate chip cookies there is no going back. I know they will be your favorite!

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Royal Icing For Cut Out Cookies

royal icing

There is a little story about this royal icing. I decided I wanted to make little cut out cookies for all my friend’s children this Christmas. I started with my gingerbread recipe then my go to sugar cookies. I tried a chocolate chip shortbread and some chocolate shortbread.

Now the night before I knew I wanted to ice these I made sure I had all my cookies ready to go. All separated into little freezer bags waiting to be iced. I woke up extra early and drove over to Michael’s to pick up a few extra food colorings and a few more piping tips. Who knew the craft store would be poppin at 9am. I stood in line with my handful of items for 30 minutes then drove back home. After setting up my sugars and food coloring I realized something… I forgot to buy meringue powder.

royal icing

There was no way  I was getting back into that line so I started browsing the internet. There are a lot of ways to pasteurize your own eggs so I made a very basic icing recipe, but I heated the eggs over a pot of boiling water to help kill off any bacteria.

royal icing

If I learned anything this weekend it is definitely to plan ahead when making an iced cut out cookie. There is so much time in drying each layer. A few times I tried to rush and my icing would just melt into another color. Do one batch at a time. Have all your piping bags ready. Icing colored and covered with plastic wrap until you are ready to use it. It takes forever for each layer to dry, but some how they dry so fast when you need to sprinkle. So definitely have all your accents ready to go.

You can see with my gingerbread men there is a slight variance between some of them. I made the icing way to thick my first go and the next morning I made another batch thinning out my flood icing. The hard part is finding that perfect consistency that can make a border then still have enough liquid to very quickly fill the border. Practice and patience are huge here. At one point a was working on the very last color in my icing layers and Patrick watches me and says “hmm it looks so easy in all the videos.” That is so true. All the research I did before trying these out and that is definitely what I took away from it all – it is not easy. Once I got the hang of it I really was on the finally touches. The little red scarves. I had the perfect consistency on that red and the red sugar held it together so nicely.

Patrick and I did go to a friend’s birthday party while all my little cookies were drying. We had a great time and it was really nice to have a reason to dress up a little. By the time we got back all my cookies were dry and ready to be packed away.

Royal Icing For Cut Out Cookies
Recipe type: Baking, Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 cookies
 
A royal icing recipe you can make from items you probably already have at home!
Ingredients
  • 3 cups of powdered sugar, with more for thickening up
  • 2 egg whites
  • ½ tsp of cream of tartar
  • 3 tbsp of cream
  • clear vanilla flavor
  • food coloring
  • sprinkles (optional)
Instructions
  1. Create a double boiler by boiling water in a small pot.
  2. Top with a mixing bowl that rests just on top of the pot.
  3. Add the egg whites, vanilla, and 2 cups of sugar to the bowl.
  4. Whisk very quickly until the mix is hot to the touch.
  5. To be EXTRA safe you can heat to 150 degrees, but I just eye balled mine.
  6. Pull off the heat and add 1 tbsp of cream.
  7. Whisk quickly.
  8. You should be able to cut with a butter knife and it takes 10-15 seconds to seal back over.
  9. Use the cream and sugar to thicken and loose the mix.
  10. Add your food color. ( I prefer gel)
  11. Use separate bowls for individual colors and keep the main mix to the side in case you need a thickener.
  12. I used Wilton tips 3 and 4.
  13. Make sure you leave at least 15 minutes dry time between ever color. Best to let cookies dry on the counter over night once complete.
  14. The icing will keep a lot of moisture in the cookie itself.

Get creative with your designs! I found so many ideas on Pinterest and tons of inspiration at the craft store. Happy Holidays!

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Easy Sugar Cookie Cut Outs

christmas cookies

christmas cookies

Every year without fail I hear the first Christmas song and I find myself in the kitchen mixing together this sugar cookie dough. Something about sugar cookies just screams Christmas to me. These cookies have a lot of vanilla and a hint of almond. This dough makes a great cut out cookie because it does not spread.

christmas cookies

I remember the first few times I made sugar cookies with cut outs and I didn’t know you had to chill the dough… They pretty much all spread into one huge sheet cookie. After many mistakes and lots of practice I believe I have it down to a science.

Soft buttery centers with a lightly crisp corner. I actually prefer them the next day. If you let them sit in a air tight container or bag they have a much nicer crumb. They taste delicious either way.

christmas cookies

You definitely cannot forget the sprinkles! Christmas sprinkles are my all time favorite. I cannot wait until this time of year when I get to break out all my favorites in my sprinkle collection! These little white snow flakes are adorable and go with everything. I am also a sucker for all colored jimmie sprinkles.

Easy Sugar Cookie Cut Outs
Recipe type: Cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 cookies
 
Buttery vanilla sugar cookies with a hint of almond.
Ingredients
  • 1 and ½ sticks of room temp salted butter
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp of water
  • 1 tbsp of vanilla extract
  • ⅓ tbsp of almond extract
  • 2½ cups of flour
  • ½ tsp of baking powder
  • For the icing:
  • ¼ cup of light corn syrup
  • 3 cups of powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp of almond extract
  • 1 tbsp of whipping cream
Instructions
  1. In a large mixing bowl beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
  2. Add the egg.
  3. Beat until incorporated and very fluffy.
  4. Add the extracts and water.
  5. Mix in the flour and baking powder at a low setting.
  6. Flour your hands and shape the dough into a ball.
  7. On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough to about ¼ inch thick.
  8. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to set the butter.
  9. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
  10. Use different cookie cutters to cut out the dough.
  11. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon sheet.
  12. Lay out the cookie cut outs and refrigerate again for 15 minutes.
  13. Bake for 8-10 minutes.
  14. The edges should just barely start to turn golden.
  15. Let rest on the baking sheet until cool.
  16. For the icing:
  17. Mix together all the ingredients.
  18. Icing should be thick, but easy to spread.
  19. Use food coloring if desired.
  20. Decorate with sprinkles!
  21. Let sit on the counter for an hour to set the icing.

christmas cookies

Don’t forget lots and lots of colored sugars! They remind me of my grandmothers spritz cookies. Light little butter cookies covered in sanding sugar. Perfect for serving Santa himself! 😉

snowflake cookies

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Chocolate Chip Caramel Cookie Smores

chocolate chip caramel smore

My social media feeds today were FILLED with fall. It is officially September and even though we still have a few more weeks of summer it seems like everyone is ready for fall.  These cookies are the perfect ending to summer. I am basically obsessed with anything smore related, but I hate how the graham cracker always crumbles as I bite down. These chocolate chip cookies are the best vessel I have found to stuff my face with roasted marshmallows.

chocolate chip caramel smore

Side note: Bath and Body Works is having a candle sale this weekend for Labor Day. Anything from the Pumpkin Collection is $15 plus there is a 20% off coupon. BUT Cinnamon Pumpkin is not part of the collection and is not included in the sale. What the what…? I just wanted to throw that out there in case someone was super excited about the cinnamon pumpkin candles. I was super sad about it this morning.

chocolate chip caramel smore

Now back to these cookies. These chocolate chip cookies are packed full of dark and semi sweet chocolates. The edges are slightly crisp with a perfect chewy center. Then I stuffed 3 roasted marshmallows on one cookie drizzled them with caramel and sandwiched them with another cookie. I miss them already.

Chocolate Chip Caramel Cookie Smores
Recipe type: baking
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6 sandwiches
 
Fat chewy chocolate chip cookies packed with chocolate then stuffed with marshmallow and caramel.
Ingredients
  • For The Cookies:
  • 6 oz dark chocolate chips
  • 6 oz semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) salted butter at room temp
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • ½ packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup of cornstarch
  • 1⅓ cup of AP flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg room temp
  • For the caramel
  • ¼ cup of salted butter
  • ¼ cup of brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp of heavy cream
  • Jumbo marshmallows roasted
Instructions
  1. For the cookies
  2. Cream the butter with the sugar and brown sugar until pale.
  3. Add the vanilla, egg and salt.
  4. Mix until pale and fluffy.Careful not to over mix.
  5. Add in the cornstarch, flour, baking soda.
  6. Mix on low until just combined.
  7. Add chocolate chips and mix in by hand. Just folding the dough over.
  8. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  9. Preheat the oven to 350.
  10. Use parchment paper or a baking mat on a large cookie sheet.
  11. I used an icecream scoop to make sure they were evenly sized dough balls,
  12. Do not press dough down. You want a thick cookie.
  13. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until slightly browned.
  14. Leave on sheet for 1 minute to slightly cool then transfer to a baking rack.
  15. (this will keep the cookies soft and not allow them to continue baking on the sheet)
  16. Makes 12 large cookies
  17. For The Caramel
  18. Heat ¼ cup of salted butter in a sauce pan on medium low heat until melted
  19. Add ¼ cup of brown sugar.
  20. Mix thoroughly.
  21. As soon as the mixture starts to bubble remove from heat and add the cream.
  22. Allow to thicken stirring occasionally.
  23. I roasted marshmallows over the oven while my caramel cooked since I have a gas stove, but you can just microwave them. They just need to be slightly warmed to become the perfect gooey texture.
  24. Once cookies are cooled add at least 3 marshmallows to one cookie top with caramel and sandwich with another cookie. Enjoy!

Even if you do not make these “smores” I highly recommend making the cookies. This is the kind of chocolate chip cookie that is even better the next day. You know with coffee for breakfast! I won’t even hide my shame…

Happy Labor Day weekend!

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Dark Chocolate Chunk Oats and Raisins Cookies

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Chocolate Chunk Oats and Raisins Cookie

Have you ever seen the movie Whiplash? Miles Teller is a drummer being trained by an emotionally abusive teacher. Sounds depressing, but in fact it is absolutely amazing. Inspirational with fantastic music. The one scene that stands out the most is where his character dumps a box of chocolate covered raisins in his popcorn. Whaaaat … mind blown. That is the only way we eat popcorn now.

Long story short- I love chocolate covered raisins. Especially in my popcorn.

I wanted to make oatmeal raisin cookies, but then I realized I was out of brown sugar. How am I ALWAYS out of brown sugar? So I took my favorite chocolate chip recipe and mixed it with my favorite oatmeal cookie recipe. I think it was pure success.

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

 

What you need:

Dark chocolate chunks

Raisins or Chocolate covered raisins

1/2 cup of quick oats

1 cup of sugar

1 tbsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp corn starch

1 1/2 cup AP flour

1 cup melted butter

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla

How To Make It:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix together butter, vanilla and sugar. Add in the egg. Do not over mix. Only mix for 30 seconds or until just combined. Add in the dry ingredients. Again mix until just combined. The dough should slightly crumble. Add the chocolate and raisins in and mix by hand. I like to roll my dough into balls and flatten slightly so I can get a good feel for how big they will spread. These cookies do not spread as much as a regular chocolate chip cookie because of the melted butter. Bake for 8 – 10 minutes. Do not over bake. It is better to under bake then allow to finish cooking on the pan while cooling. Enjoy!

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Searching For That Idiot Proof Chocolate Chip Cookie






  What is “idiot proof” ? I myself could be considered a chocolate chip cookie “idiot”. For something we make so often how are there so many variations of the same cookie? 

It seems like every time I find my perfect recipe- I move. This doesn’t sound like a big deal, but it is. Getting to know your oven is a long process. When I first moved to Georgia I lived in an apartment with a new electric oven. My go to recipe was the one on the back of the nestle bag. So easy and simple. (You would think) After the apartment I lived in a house with my first gas oven. A dream for cooking, but my nightmare for baking. I switched to the New York Times perfect cookie recipe there. Then last year this time I rented a room in a very old lake house. The electric oven there would heat to 350 then take a little break so I was never exactly sure how my cookies would turn out. Usually undercooked. Now I am in my own home with a new gas oven. Again a total dream to cook with, but baking … It has been taking some time. Until now. This recipe after 6 months of testing is it! 
It is not as over the top sweet as most recipes, but the perfect soft gooey middle and thick crunchy crust is my favorite. 
(Adapted from bromabakery- the best baking site ever)
Idiot Proof Chocolate Chip Cookies
What you need:
1 stick unsalted butter room temp
3/4 cup light brown sugar packed
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/4 cups king aurther all purpose flour
1/2 tsp kosher salt (or fine if you don’t like to taste the salt)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda 
1 tbsp cornstarch ( make sure this is not expired) 
1 large egg
1/2 cup dark chocolate chunks
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips 
Preheat your oven to 350. 
Mix together butter, sugar and eggs until you have a fluffy light brown concoction. Add in vanilla. In a separate bowl mix the flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. 
Stir the dry ingredients into the butter sugar mixture until just mixed. Do not over mix. That will create a dense cakey cookie. Add in the chocolate chips by just folding the batter a few times. 
Put mixture in the freezer for about 10 minutes. I highly recommend doing a test cookie first. 
Roll mixture into balls and top with kosher salt, natural sugar or more chocolate! Bake for about 10-12 minutes depending on your oven. The sides will be golden brown and the middle will have just set. Let cool on a baking rack.
Enjoy with a glass of milk!

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