Creamy Cinnamon Pear Cups



These Creamy Cinnamon Pear Cups are a delicious sweet snack. Instead of sugar, I used Madhava Organic Amber Raw Blue Agave sweetener. It’s a low-glycemic sweetener. It gave the snack a deep, rich taste.


Creamy Cinnamon Pear Cups are a yummy snack that will satisfy your dessert cravings  in a small, snack-sized bite. There’s no fuss with this recipe. It’s simple and easy to make. There’s no baking or cooking required. Another way this recipe makes your life easier…you don’t have to use utensils. That makes for an easy clean up!


The combination of cream cheese and mascarpone fresca makes this snack taste just like a mini cheesecake. Add the delicious cinnamon pear filling and you have a winning recipe that will please all of your guests. Check out the recipe below.

Creamy Cinnamon Pear Cups
Recipe type: snack
Serves: 30 cups
  • 2 packages of Mini Phyllo Shells (15 shells in each)
  • 2 15oz cans of sliced pears (in pear juice, not syrup)
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 8oz pgk of cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1 8oz container of Mascarpone Fresca, room temperature
  • ¼ C. plus 1TBS Madhava amber raw agave syrup, divided
  1. Drain pears and chop into small pieces
  2. In a bowl, combine pears, cinnamon and 1 tbs Madhava Amber Raw Agave and set aside
  3. Using a stand mixer, combine cream cheese, Mascarpone Fresca, vanilla extract and ¼ C. Madhava Amber Raw Agave until creamy
  4. Fill phyllo shells with pear mixture
  5. using a pastry bag with decorative tip, pipe cream cheese mixture on the top


The phyllo shells add a nice crispy crunch. When you make this recipe, be sure to put it together right before it’s to be served. This will ensure the cups won’t get soggy from sitting out for a long time. madhava-cinnamon-pear-snacks

If you had to come up with a snack using Madhava products, what you you make? Go to the Madhava website and check out their products then come back and leave a comment. Can’t wait to hear your ideas!


Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes



Although a big cake is wonderful, with these Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes, everyone gets a cherry and big slice of pineapple! My 10 year old like these a lot. Kids are so used to cupcakes with frosting, so I wasn’t sure how he’d like them. So, I was happy to know these will be enjoyed by kids and adults alike.

These cupcakes are simple and delicious! Boxed cake mix to make this recipe quick and easy.  Just a few extra steps take your regular boxed cake mix to a whole other level!

Butter, brown sugar, and vanilla go into the bottom of the cupcake pan.


Next go the pineapple and cherries.


Cake mix goes over that, then you bake.


Cool and flip over. YUM!


All done!

Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes
Recipe type: dessert
  • Boxed vanilla cake mix (and ingredients to make).
  • 2 cans of pineapple slices (you'll have leftovers)
  • 24 maraschino cherries
  • 5 Tbs butter, melted
  • 1 c dark brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350*
  2. In a medium bowl, combine melted butter, brown sugar, and vanilla.
  3. Prepare non-stick 12 slot cupcake pan with non-stick spray.
  4. In each slot add about a tsp of the sugar/butter mixture.
  5. On top of that add a pineapple slice and a cherry. I had to break apart the pineapples to make them fit.
  6. Prepare cake mix according to box directions.
  7. Add the cake mix over the fruit. It should be close to the top, but not over flowing. Gently tap a few times on table/counter.
  8. Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  9. Take out of the oven and let sit for 5 minutes.
  10. Take a cutting board or a long plate and put over the top and flip over. Gently shake until all cupcakes are out.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 24 cupcakes

These Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes are a great dessert for any occasion. What would you make them for? Leave a comment below to let us know.


Banana Cheesecake Egg Rolls



Bananas and cheesecake filling fried in an egg roll wrapper? Um, yes, please! If you want a dessert that is different than cake or pie, try these banana cheesecake egg rolls. They’re crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside.


4-6 Egg roll wrappers (Amount you will need depends on how much you fill each one.)

Cheesecake Filling*

1 Banana quarter per wrapper (quartered by cutting banana lengthwise, then in half)

Canola Oil, for frying

Powdered sugar and whipped cream to top, optional



Over medium heat, heat oil in pan. 1-2 inches of oil is ok. It doesn’t have to be deep.

On each egg roll wrapper, scoop about 2 tablespoons of cheesecake filling (cheesecake filling recipe below).

Add a banana quarter on top of that.

Wrap the egg roll according to package directions, or find a how-to on the internet.

Drop egg rolls in a few at a time carefully into heated oil. Fry, turning, until brown on all sides.

Drain on a brown paper bag or on paper towels.

When the egg rolls have cooled a bit, you can add toppings of your choice, like powdered sugar, whipped cream, or banana slices!


*Cheesecake Filling:


1 8oz pkg. cream cheese, softened

8tsp. sweetened condensed milk

½ tsp vanilla extract

3/4 tsp lemon juice

2 C. whipped topping



Using a stand mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth. (You can also use an electric hand mixer)

While mixer is going, slowly add sweetened condensed milk.

Scrape the sides as you go.

Add vanilla extract and lemon juice one at a time, making sure each gets combined thoroughly.

Add whipped topping and mix just until combined.




I’m thinking about the different ways to make this…different fruit, different cheesecake flavors…mmmm. What would be your perfect ingredient? Comment below!


Blueberry Hand Pies



3 words…Blueberry Hand Pies. These little pockets of deliciousness have a sweet, tart blueberry filling and a flaky crust. If you are looking for a recipe to make with the kids, this is the one. It’s simple and doesn’t take long to make. There will be none of these left over, for sure!

This hand pie recipe is versatile. How about trying it with strawberries instead of blueberries…I think I know what I’m trying next!




Pre-made pie crust dough, 2 sheets

1pt blueberries, washed and dried

2 tsp of white sugar

zest of ½ of a lemon

1 tsp cornstarch

1 egg beaten with 1 tsp water



Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine blueberries, sugar, lemon zest and cornstarch.

Roll open pie crust and use a knife to cut into rectangular shapes. The size you cut them into will determine the amount of blueberry hand pies you end up with.

Scoop blueberry mixture onto one half of the rectangle, leaving room around the corners to seal.


Fold the empty side over the side with the blueberry mixture and seal edges. Go along the edges with a fork to ensure the seal, and to make a pretty decorated edge. Add the pies to a baking sheet sprayed with non-stick spray. Brush the egg mixture over the top of the pies with a pastry brush.

Bake for 12-15 minutes, until crust has browned. Depending on how big or small you made your pies, you may have to adjust time a little less or more. So, just keep an eye on them. They may get a little messy while baking, with the juices coming out, but don’t worry, that’s normal.

If you would like to drizzle glaze on top of your pies:

Add 1/2 C. powdered sugar in a bowl and mix with milk, added a few drops at at time, until desired consistency is reached.



Fudgy Nutella Caramel Brownies



I needed to make some yummy fudgy brownies after I screwed up the Nutella Cheesecake Mocha Brownies. Until I remake those, I still wanted to make a brownie with Nutella.

Can I tell you that these are some fudgy brownies!?! Oh boy. If you like brownies that are moist and fudge-like, these are for you!! These bad boys are so decadent! Be sure to have a glass of milk handy.


I found Rachael Ray’s Basic Brownie recipe and that’s what I worked off of. I noticed people in the comments were saying how bittersweet these were. The milk chocolate chips help this problem. Well, the caramel and Nutella help, too. :)

Follow those instructions, except make these tweaks:

  1. Use an 8×8 pan instead of a 9×9
  2. Butter and flour the pan
  3. Add 5-8 minutes to cooking time

Other ingredients needed:

  • Nutella
  • Milk chocolate chips
  • Caramel sauce (like an ice cream topping)
  • Nutella Caramel Fudgy Brownies

Make brownie mix according to the original recipe directions. Pour 1/2 of the batter into the pan and spread evenly to the edges. Spread about 2Tbs of Nutella over the top of the batter. On top of that add 2Tbs of the caramel sauce and spread to edges, as well. Sprinkle with a handful of chocolate chips. Top with remaining batter and spread to edges. Bake according to original recipe directions, except add about 8 minutes, since the pan is a little smaller. Let cool. Cut into squares and put on a large piece of waxed paper. Drizzle top with Nutella (add some to a small bowl and microwave for 20 seconds to melt and thin it out.) and caramel. Sprinkle with chocolate chips. ENJOY!


Nutella Cheesecake Mocha Brownies



I had Nutella and cream cheese and I wanted to bake something. Google helped me decide…Nutella Cheesecake Brownies! I adapted these from Sugar Mama’s Nutella Cheesecake Brownies. The cheesecake topping is DELICIOUS!



Cream Cheese Topping:

8 ounces cream cheese

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1/2 cup Nutella

Brownies: I screwed mine up :( I want to kick myself in the pants for messing with the recipe a bit too much, as they came out too cakey for me. Follow Sugar Mama’s Recipe)

1 cup flour

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

1/3 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons butter, softened

3/4 cup white sugar

1 TBS Nutella

1/4 C coffee, cooled

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 tsp almond extract

2 large eggs

Pre-heat oven to 350*


Cheesecake Mixture:

Using a stand mixer, cream together the sugar and cream cheese. Add the egg and almond extract and mix until combined. Scrape the bottom as you go to make sure everything gets mixed. Set aside half of the mixture into a large ziplock bag. Add Nutella to the remaining half and combine until creamy. Put that into another ziplock bag.

Clean your stand mixer for part two. Making the brownie mix.

Brownie Mixture:

Sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt into a bowl. In your stand mixer, cream sugar and butter. Add eggs, vanilla and almond extracts, and coffee. Add the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Add the Nutella and mix until incorporated.

Butter and flour a 9×13 glass pan. Pour in the brownie batter and spread evenly to the edges. It may look like a thin layer, but it will rise as it cooks. One at a time, snip off the end of the ziplock bags and swirl each all over the brownie mixture. Using a skewer, swirl the top layer of cream cheese mixtures (don’t get down into the brownie layer).

Bake at 350 for 25-28 minutes, until done. (I did 30 minutes, but I should have taken out around the 26-28 minute mark as I think it cooked too long.)


I like fudgy brownies.  But, if you like a cake-like brownie, these are just for you! I am going to try to re-do them and see how they turn out. Stay tuned!

Do you like a brownie that is more of a fudge or cake consistency? Comment below!

Orange Creamsicle Poke Cupcakes

orange cupcake LNL

orange cupcake LNL

Even though it was in the high 80’s, I felt the need to make some cupcakes. The heat made me think, “Hey, silly…it’s summer!” But I still had the baking bug. I didn’t want to go through the whole making-a-cake-from-scratch process, so I figured a boxed cake mix and a nice doctored up icing would be perfect.

orange3cupcakes LNL

But what to make? I thought a nice citrus cupcake would do the trick. I’ve seen some Orange Creamsicle Poke Cupcakes around the web but I wanted to make mine different. Perhaps make the frosting a bit different. Yes! I decided the addition of cream cheese to the frosting would truly add to the creaminess of the “creamsicle”. The frosting is light and fluffy and has just the right amount of orange flavor.

Orange Creamsicle Poke Cupcakes
Recipe type: Dessert
  • Boxed Cake Mix (and the ingredients to make) *I used yellow, but white would work best for color contrast.
  • 1 container Cool Whip
  • ½ pkg cream cheese (4oz)
  • 1 - 1.85oz pkg vanilla pudding
  • ¾ C. milk
  • 1 3oz pkg of Orange Jello *Use only 5 tsp. of Jello (in powdered form) for the frosting, remaining is used for "poking" the cupcakes
  • remaining amount of jello
  • ¾ C boiling water
  • ½ C cold water
  • 3-4 ice cubes
  • OPTIONAL: garnish with orange wedges
  1. Make cupcakes according to box directions. Cool.
  2. Frosting:
  3. Using a stand mixer, cream together softened cream cheese, milk, and pudding until combined. Add jello. Mix until smooth. Fold in cool whip.
  4. Jello liquid to "Poke" cupcakes:
  5. boil ¾ C. water and add jello. stir until completely dissolved. Add cold water and ice.
  6. Add to cupcakes. You can do this two ways.
  7. A) poke holes in cupcakes with a skewer or something similar. Drizzle liquid over cupcakes.
  8. *This way is messy and may make cupcakes too wet.
  9. B) I had an extra, unused medicine syringe that holds up to 5ml. I washed it in hot soapy water. Add liquid to the syringe and squirt in various parts of the cupcake. No need to make holes first.
  10. Put in fridge for 2 to 3 hours or overnight. Frost, garnish if you'd like, and enjoy!

orange w open LNL

I used yellow cake mix. If you want more of a color contrast, use white cake mix.

orange open LNL

Chocolate Avocado Cupcakes w/ Avocado Buttercream Frosting

Avocado Cupcake

Avocado Cupcake

Avocado? In a cupcake? It may sound weird but if you are an avocado fan, you will be pleased.

Replacing the oil with avocado in the cupcakes makes it soft and fluffy.

The avocado taste in the frosting is subtle yet tasty. It lightly tints the frosting green so it’s perfect for St. Patrick’s Day!

What do you think? Have you ever had avocado in a dessert? Let us know!

Chocolate Avocado Cupcakes w/ Avocado Buttercream Frosting
Recipe type: Dessert
  • Cupcakes
  • Ingredients:
  • Boxed chocolate cake mix and the ingredients it calls for minus oil
  • ⅓ C. Ripe avocado, mashed (to replace the ⅓ C. oil)
  • Frosting
  • Ingredients:
  • 5 Cups powdered sugar
  • 1 Stick of butter, softened
  • 1 Ripe avocado, mashed
  • 3 tbs milk
  1. Cupcakes
  2. Directions:
  3. Follow directions on box, omitting oil and replacing equal amount of mashed avocado. Reduce baking time by 5 minutes. Cupcakes are done when a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  4. Frosting
  5. Ingredients:
  6. Using a stand or electric mixer, beat butter and avocado until smooth. Slowly add powdered sugar until combined adding milk, as necessary, to desired consistency.


Easy Black Forest Trifle For One

black forest trifle 2

 This Valentine’s Day dessert would be a great ending to dinner with your sweetheart, or a sweet snack for your kids.

black forest trifle 2

This individual Black Forest Trifle is simple and tasty. It’s a quick Valentine’s Day dessert for those who just don’t have the time to make an extravagant, time-consuming dessert. It’s also great for those who may not have the kitchen confidence to make something sweet for their Valentine.

What’s great about this black forest trifle is that it’s versatile. You can make the cake yourself or it can be as easy as buying one. You can make the pudding or buy some already made. It’s up to you. Do you have one person you want to make this for? Just make one. If you have a handful of people to feed, just make more.

black forest trifle


Easy Black Forest Trifle For One
Recipe type: Dessert, Valentine's Day
  • Chocolate Cake
  • Chocolate Pudding
  • Cherry Pie Filling
  • Whipped Topping
  • Maraschino Cherry
  • A cute glass to assemble it in
  1. This recipe is simple and versatile. You can choose to make the cake or buy a cake. You can also purchase premade pudding or make your own.
  2. Cut the cake into cubes. Assemble the ingredients into glass layering pudding, cherry pie filling and chocolate cake cubes. Add a dollop of whipped topping and a maraschino cherry and there you have it!

Caramel Apple Upside Down Muffins

caramel apple upside down muffins 4

upside down caramel apple muffins lnl

If you like caramel and apples, these muffins are for you! They are delicious. I was inspired by the pineapple upside down cake. I wanted to make muffins that were gooey and delicious, and upside down!  So, what better than yummy tart apples and sweet caramel?! These caramel apple upside down muffins are great for breakfast, brunch, or dessert.

caramel apple upside down muffins 4

I was worried that putting too much caramel at the bottom would overflow while they were baking, or just not come out right, so this recipe has a separate batch of caramel sauce so you can add as much, or as little, as you like.



2 C flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
2 eggs
1/4 c melted butter
1 c half-and-half
1/2 c brown sugar
1/2 c white sugar

For the apples:
2 apples, (I used Gala) peeled and sliced thin
1 TBS butter
2 TBS brown sugar
2 TBS half and half

Caramel Sauce: (You can double if you like lots of sauce)
1 TBS butter
2 TBS light brown sugar
4 TBS half and half


Line muffin pans with cupcake liners.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
In a small pot over low heat, melt the 1/4 cup of butter for the muffin mixture. Set aside to cool when melted.

While that’s slowly melting, start making the apples for the bottom:
melt the 1 TBS butter in a pan and add apples when melted
add the 2 TBS brown sugar
cook over medium heat for about 6 minutes until apples get soft.
add the 2 TBS half and half and cook for another 2 minutes
take off of heat and let cool

While the apples are cooling, begin to make the muffin mixture:
(I used my Kitchen Aid, but you can use a hand mixer if you don’t have one.)
Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl, add cinnamon and set aside.
In your mixing bowl, combine melted butter (which should be cooled at this point) eggs, sugars and half and half. Once combined, slowly add the flour mixture and mix until combined.

When the apples are cooled down, add a few apples to the bottom of the cupcake liners, making sure they are flat. I only added 2-3 per liner. Next time I will try with more. Add the muffin mixture on top, filling almost all the way.
Bake for about 16-18 minutes until golden brown. (You can check doneness by inserting a toothpick, and if it comes out clean it’s all done.)

While they are in the oven, make the caramel sauce.
Heat up the butter and sugar until melted over medium heat. It will start to bubble. Cook for about 2-3 minutes, stirring most of the time. Add the half and half and cook for another minute. Take off heat. It will thicken as it cools.

When muffins are done, let them cool in the pan for 5 minutes then transfer to cooling racks for another 5 or so minutes. Peel back the cupcake liners slowly and carefully so the apples don’t come of with it. Serve upside down with caramel sauce.

 upside down caramel apple muffins 3 lnl