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Salted Caramel Pumpkin Roll

Yesterday, I told you about my failed pumpkin roll attempt. Well, today, I am stuck inside to wait out “Frankenstorm”. What do I do with my extra time? Remake my salted caramel pumpkin roll, this time with Mom’s careful attention. Really, she’s the pumpkin roll expert. I also have her recipe to share with you. She has been making this for as long as I can remember. Every year, she spends a week making pumpkin roll for us. And yes, she makes that many. So if you are like me and you’re stuck inside today, I recommend making some of this pumpkin roll to get you through the storm.

Salted Caramel Pumpkin Roll

  • Salted Caramel
    • 4 tbsp butter
    • 1/2 cup white sugar
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 1/4 cup whipping cream
    • 1/4 tsp sea salt
    1. Melt butter in a small saucepan.
    2. Once the butter comes to a boil, add sugars. Stir constantly until boiling.
    3. Add whipping cream. Let boil for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly.
    4. Take off of heat. Stir in salt. Set aside to cool and thicken.
  • Pumpkin Roll (cake)
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 2/3 cup pumpkin
    • 1 tsp lemon juice
    • 3/4 cup flour
    • 1 tsp baking powder
    • 2 tsp cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    1. Beat eggs for 3 minutes.
    2. Add sugar, pumpkin, lemon juice, flour, bakiing poder, cinnamon, and salt and beat well.
    3. Pour and spread into greased and floured jelly roll an.
    4. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes.
    5. When done, turn onto a sugared  towel {100% cotton is best to ensure the cake does not stick.}
    6. Roll up jelly roll style.  Let cool completely.
  • Pumpkin Roll (filling)
    • 1 cup powdered sugar
    • 8 oz. cream cheese
    • 4 tbsp butter
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla
    • Prepared caramel
    1. Cream together butter and cream cheese.
    2. Add powdered sugar. Beat until smooth.
    3. Mix in vanilla.
    4. Add caramel slowly, to taste. {I only used about half of what I made.} Mix in until incorporated.
    5. Once the cake is fully cooled, unroll cake and spread in filling. Leave about 1/4″ on all sides.
    6. Roll up cake and freeze until ready to use.


To everyone on the East Coast, stay safe!

Halloween Cupcakes

This is shaping up to be one crazy week. On Wednesday night, I tried to make a salted caramel pumpkin roll for you all. Pumpkin roll was one of my favorite desserts growing up and now that it is pumpkin season I have no excuse not to make some. =) I have seen my mom make pumpkin roll more times than I can count, so I figured it’s pretty simple. Right? Wrong. Everything went fine until the cake got stuck in the pan. I managed to get it out. No harm done. I wrapped it up and let it cool. Then, I unwrapped it and spread in the salted caramel cream cheese spread. {Oh man was that good! I’m kind of on a salted caramel kick, and I am telling you I will never make pumpkin roll without salted caramel again!} And then I wrapped it back up and everything fell apart. Literally. My pumpkin roll didn’t roll. It ripped. Multiple times. =( So I was left with a very delicious but sad looking pumpkin cake surrounded by wonderful salted caramel cream cheese filling. Don’t worry. It didn’t go to waste.


I’m hoping to break this baking curse before it gets out of hand, so I bring you Halloween cupcakes.

This weekend is the perfect time for this. It is my sweet baby cousin’s 2nd birthday. My favorite pictures of her are from her 1st birthday party which ,of course, was Halloween themed. I have an adorable picture of her dressed up as a lion surrounded by pumpkins! Logically, I must make pumpkin cupcakes for her birthday this year. This weekend also happens to be my youth group’s costume party and our youth group leader’s birthday is on Tuesday. So now I need cupcakes for all of them too! Busy, busy weekend.

I went with a chocolate cake because it felt more Halloween-y. Then, I paired it with a simple vanilla buttercream. So easy and super delicious. I am ready for Halloween with these cupcakes {and any other occasions you decide to throw at me.}


Chocolate Cupcakes {Yield: 24-30 cupcakes}

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup strong coffee, cooled (optional)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350⁰F. Place liners in muffin tins.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  4. In a glass measuring cup, combine milk and coffee. Set aside.
  5. Add eggs to butter/sugar mixture one at a time, mixing well after each.
  6. Add flour mixture in three parts, alternating with milk/coffee mixture. Begin and end with flour mixture.
  7. Stir in vanilla extract, just until combined.
  8. Bake for 14-16 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.


Yummy Vanilla Buttercream {Makes enough to frost about 2 dozen cupcakes}

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 4 oz. cream cheese
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 heavy cream
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Food coloring gel, assorted colors
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and cream cheese.
  2. Slowly add powdered sugar, one cup at a time.
  3. Add heavy cream until you reach desired consistency. {You may not need all of it.}
  4. Stir in vanilla extract.
  5. Beat on high for 5 minutes.
  6. Separate frosting into several bowls. Stir in desired color.
  7. Pipe onto cupcakes.

How to Make Icing for Only 2 Cupcakes

Have you ever made cupcakes and said to yourself “I’m going to ice these tomorrow, but boy, do  I want one now.” So, if you’re like me, you put aside all resolve to ice your cupcakes the next day and begin decorating your cupcakes at ridiculous hours of the night because you need icing to put on the cupcake that you’re going to eat. Maybe I’m the only one.

That was the story of my night. I made a ton of cupcakes for tomorrow night, and I had a few left over for myself. The only problem: No icing. This time I kept my resolve and decided to create an icing recipe that only made enough icing for me.

This recipe is not exact. In fact, this recipe is so not exact that I took pictures instead of writing down amounts. {For those of you, like me, who like exact measurements, I’m sorry.}

Start with this much butter and this much cream cheese.

That’s about 1 tbsp of butter and 1/2 tbsp – 1 tbsp of cream cheese.

Cream together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add about this much powdered sugar.


By “this much,” I mean a teaspoon. {I told you. This recipe is not exact.}

Once it starts to come together, add some more powdered sugar. I used about 4 “teaspoons” total.


Once it all comes together, add a splash of milk.


That was too much milk, so don’t add quite that much. Play with the milk and sugar until you reach your desired consistency.

When you’re all done, it ends up looking like this.


It makes enough for about 4 cupcakes frosted the way that Mom likes.

Or about 2 cupcakes frosted the way that I like it.


The best part about this recipe is that it is a bare bones icing recipe. Add a bit of cocoa powder, lemon/orange extract, etc. to change the flavor.

Now all I need is a recipe for only two cupcakes. =)




Apple Cinnamon Cookies

Happy National Apple Day to those of you in the UK! I love apples, and we happen to have a TON of apples in my kitchen. I’ve been itching to bake with them, and today is the perfect excuse! I was away this weekend in northern Pennsylvania. It was so beautiful and fall-y there that I’ve been dreaming of fall goodies to make. Then, I came back to New Jersey where we are experiencing a heat wave. =( Over 70 degrees at the end of October! I’m going to need to have a talk with this weather. To console myself, I started on my list of fall-inspired baked goods and I made these Apple Cinnamon Cookies.

I started with a basic snickerdoodle recipe, then added apples. There’s a lot of things I didn’t do that I wish I’d done, so I’m sure your cookies will look much better than mine. Please, do yourself a favor, and cook your apples before you add them to the dough. {I adjusted the recipe to reflect this.} Mine didn’t have enough apple flavor for my liking. Also, if you have it, I would recommend experimenting with apple sauce in your dough in place of some of the butter or eggs.

Apple Cinnamon Cookies

  • 1 apple, peeled, cored, and diced {I know. It doesn’t seem like enough to me either, but it was perfect.}
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 3-4 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 2 ¾ cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 ¾ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease cookie sheets.
  2. In a saucepan, combine apples, butter, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sugars. Cook until liquid begins to boil. Let sit to cool and thicken.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs and mix until combined.
  5. Add flour mixture in three parts. Gently fold in apple mixture.
  6. Bake for about 10 minutes or until golden.


Yum! If you tried it with applesauce, let me know how it comes out! What fall goodies are you baking?

P.S. You caught me. It is National Nut Day in America. But I don’t like nuts, and I will only eat peanut butter if I can douse it in sugar. Forgive me?

Chocolate Pudding Brownie Cookies


Enter midterms.


My life has become an endless stream of papers and deadlines and studying. I need to make something delicious. And chocolate.


I’ve been reading a lot about pudding recipes – pudding cookies, pudding cake, pudding brownies. I couldn’t choose between cookies, cake, and brownies so I combined them all. Chocolate Pudding Brownie Cookies.



I really wanted them to be in that perfect tiny cookie shape, so I baked them in muffin pans. Perfect for ice cream sandwiches. =) Which coincidentally is how I had mine.



These would also be perfect with my salted caramel buttercream. Just slather some between two cookies and make yourself a salted caramel brownie cookie sandwich. Wow. That’s a mouthful. But it sounds delicious!


Chocolate Pudding Brownie Cookies (Adapted from JavaCupcake)

  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  •  3.4 oz package pudding mix
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 tsp instant espresso powder  =)
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease muffin pans very well. (Seriously. Grease them until you think they are thoroughly greased. Then do it again.)
  2. In a medium saucepan, melt butter. Add sugar. Stir until sugar starts to melt slightly.
  3. Remove from heat. Add brownie mix and cocoa powder. Mix will be very thick.
  4. Carefully add the eggs, one at a time. Stir in vanilla.
  5. Add flour and salt. Whisk until just combined. Do not over mix.
  6. Using a small ice cream scoop, scoop brownie mix into the muffin tin.
  7. Bake 10-12 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting



I have been craving the perfect pumpkin treat all week. I wanted something sweet, light, with a good amount of spice and of course an incredible pumpkin flavor. So today, I sought to satisfy this craving. Totally worth the wait. Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting. Cream cheese frosting is probably my favorite thing ever. The maple just made it even better and pairing it with yummy pumpkin spice cupcakes…so good. These cupcakes are perfect. The problem that I have with most pumpkin spice cupcakes is that they are too spicy with not enough pumpkin. These cupcakes have the perfect balance of pumpkin and spice, and they pair perfectly with my coffee. =)


Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes (Yields about 18 cupcakes)

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar (light or dark)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup pumpkin
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line cupcake pans.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and pumpkin pie spice.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugars.
  4. Add pumpkin and beat until combined.
  5. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each.
  6. Add flour mixture in three parts. Add vanilla and mix until incorporated.
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.


Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 8 oz. cream cheese, room temp
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup (Note: If using pure maple syrup, adjust to 1/4 cup or to taste.)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2-3 tbsp heavy cream
  • 5-6 drops orange gel food coloring, optional
  1. In the bowl of a mixer, cream butter and cream cheese.
  2. Add powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time.
  3. Add maple syrup and vanilla.
  4. Beat to incorporate and add heavy cream until you reach desired consistency. The maple syrup makes the frosting a little sticky, so add the heavy cream earlier if the frosting starts to stick to the mixer.
  5. Add food coloring and mix until incorporated.