amped up drunken blondies

oh my gosh y’all.

i’ve been totally holding out.

but but but not purposefully!!

i’ve been meaning to share these for like 2 weeks now but things have been crazy and then i had a viral infection last week so the crazy was even crazier!

so since i’ve been holding out i’m not going to blab on and on about something…. we’ll get straight to the food.

i couple weeks ago i was in the mood to make something but i wasn’t really sure what. well that’s kinda a lie. i really wanted to make brownies but while i was browsing pinterest for an idea, i saw these cookies over at heather’s site. {yes i’m totally aware that cookies and brownies aren’t the same thing.} then i turned to one of my new favorite cookbooks and saw a recipe for drunken blondies and it was like everything righted itself in the world and i got to work.

and of course me being me, i couldn’t leave things alone. but let’s be real…. melted butter is really just screaming to be brown butter. {which if you are looking for a fabulous tutorial on, see darla’s here!} and i mean bourbon really loves maple and bacon so why not make sure the bffs are together? it’s only right.

so if you’re looking for a dessert to bring to your tailgate this upcoming weekend or something different for your thanksgiving dessert buffet, give these a try!

amped up drunken blondiesamped up drunken blondies

  • 2 c flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch salt
  • 1/2 c {8-10 slices} bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
  • 1 c {2 sticks} brown butter
  • 2 tbs bacon grease
  • 1 c dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1 c light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs, room temp
  • 2 tbs bourbon
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp maple extract
  • 1/2 c chopped pecans
  • 1/2 c dark chocolate chips
  1. preheat oven to 350F. line a 9×13 baking pan with aluminum foil, allowing the ends to hang over the edges of the pan; grease with baking spray.
  2. whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl; set aside.
  3. in a large mixing bowl, stir together the butter, bacon grease, and brown sugars until smooth and well combined. add in the eggs, bourbon, vanilla extract and maple extract; mix until thoroughly combined. stir in the dry ingredients followed by the bacon bits, pecans and chocolate chips.
  4. pour into the prepared pan and spread evenly. bake 20-25 min or until the top is golden brown. remove the pan from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack. cut into bars and keep in an airtight container.

seriously good bars and no fancy mixer required!


recipe adapted from: the back in the day bakery cookbook


candy corn magic bars

not one to shy away from controversial topics i have to weigh in on one….

and this one i can actually weigh in on….

i’m sure by now you may have heard of the “fit mom” that caused all kinds of controversy by posting a picture of herself with her 3 young sons with the words “what’s your excuse?”

well all kinds of people are giving their opinion on the matter and because i happened to read a few articles about it and this is my teeny, tiny corner to say something, here’s mine….

i don’t think what she did is “fat shaming” as some are calling it. you know what i have to say to her… good for you. for everyone out there saying all kinds of negative things, you are exactly who she is talking to. she’s not saying that everyone needs to have her washboard abs and be all kinds of ripped. she’s just asking what someone’s excuse it.

i mean look…. i go to the gym 5-7 days a week. i make it a priority. it matters to me whether i make it to gym or not. BUUUUUT there are definitely some days i have an “excuse”. i’m tired or i have a headache. and i know when i boil it down, it’s an excuse. and i’m OK with that. but there have also been days where i had to work late so i left, went to my spin class and came back to the office and worked into the night. for me, it is something i enjoy and that i have begun to make it more of a priority and stopped making so many excuses. that’s all this chick is saying.

or maybe you fall more in line with this lady… to which i totally give her a high five {and you too!}

when it comes to something like this, i think it’s to each, their own.

but i know if i don’t make it to the gym, i can’t eat like an entire pan of these bars because let’s be real, i have no will power towards something like these.

i mean for real.

since halloween is coming, i totally let this idea give me the perfect excuse to buy a bag of candy corn.

which some people love or hate. personally…. i happen to love the stuff.

then m&m’s came out with some white chocolate candy corn m&m’s AND oreos had some limited edition candy corn golden oreos.

{side note…. those freaking oreos go fast so they didn’t make it to this recipe but NEXT YEAR my friends.}

so with all the signs coming from the universe i knew all these candy corn things must be combined to make some magic bars. and then i threw some peanuts in there because apparently it’s a thing.

{second side note….. BEST.COMBO.EVER.}

but back to these bars.


candy corn magic bars from pink tiger in the kitchen

candy corn magic bars

  • 1 (17.5 oz) package sugar cookie mix
  • 1/2 c (1 stick) brown butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1 c chopped golden oreos
  • 1 c candy corn m&m’s {or white chocolate chunks}
  • 1 c lightly salted peanuts
  • 1 c candy corn
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  1. preheat the oven to 350F. grease a 11×17″ or 9×13″ pyrex dish, depending on thick you’d like your bars.
  2. stir together the cookie mix, brown butter, egg, vanilla extract and almond extract together. press evenly in your  pyrex dish. sprinkle the oreos pieces evenly over the dough followed by m&m’s {or white chocolate chunks}, peanuts and candy corn. evenly pour the condensed milk over the top.
  3. bake 23-30 min until the crust and top are golden. cool completely before slicing.

so let’s all make some of these bars and meet at the gym and eat them.

{oh and last side note….. i totally brought these to my gym for the awesome people at the front desk. true story.}


birthday cake magic bars

so since it’s hot and i don’t like the heat it makes total since for me to be sharing something yummy that you have to bake right??

i know…

i’m terrible.

but let’s be honest…

even though it’s not evident here, i’ve been on a bit of a magic bar kick. true i’ve only shared one version with you but i’ve definitely made them at least 4 other times. i’ve been trying to dream up new combinations. (although those are taking a back seat to ice cream at the moment…)

some people like dorothy seem to have no problems dreaming up endless variations. but me? i seem to get stuck for some reason.

until i was recently trying to think of something that i could use the golden oreos with birthday cake filling…. see i needed to use most of the cookies in SOMETHING because i have NO self control when it comes to oreos in my house. i almost guarantee that if there is a package, it’s going to be gone within a couple days. like the rest of this package was gone in 3 days. i may or may not have had them for breakfast, pre-dinner snack and dessert.

but these magic bars are so so so good. i paired them up with the same brown butter sugar cookie crust from my dark chocolate almond magic bars. to that i added some slivered almonds and white chocolate chips. and then because what would these “birthday cake” magic bars be without some festiveness, i threw some colorful sprinkles on top! and although they require me to heat the oven, they are a total win in my book!

birthday cake magic barbirthday cake magic bars

  • 1 (17.5 oz) package sugar cookie mix
  • 1/2 c (1 stick) brown butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1 c chopped golden birthday cake oreos
  • 1 c white chocolate chips
  • 1 c silvered almonds, slightly toasted
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • sprinkles
  1. preheat the oven to 350F. grease a 11×17″ or 9×13″ pyrex dish, depending on thick you’d like your bars.
  2. stir together the cookie mix, brown butter, egg, vanilla extract and almond extract together. press evenly in your  pyrex dish. sprinkle the oreos pieces evenly over the dough followed by white chocolate chips and toasted almonds. evenly pour the condensed milk over the top. add sprinkles.
  3. bake 23-30 min until the crust and top are golden. cool completely before slicing.

and now i’m drooling and realizing how i’m in desperate need of some more golden birthday cake oreos….


this post is linked up to these fun link parties: what’s cookin’ wednesdays and what’s in your kitchen wednesdays

almond flour brownies

want to know how to feel real old lady? live in a condo complex with college students.

true story.

nothing will make you feel as old lady as that will.

i mean it.

and this is coming from the broad that goes to bed by 10P everynight (including weekends).

see my complex is relatively close to campus but not so close that it’s over run by college kids. normally it’s nice and quiet. but a year ago, these two jokers moved in next door and now i’m counting down the days until the end of july and they move out. oh and i’m praying who ever moves in will be nice quiet people with no big loud dogs. please pray for me.

until then, let’s comfort ourselves with brownies.

these aren’t your traditional flour based brownie. these are another almond flour/meal based recipe for the week. but if you didn’t make them yourself or you didn’t know that they weren’t traditional all purpose flour, you wouldn’t know any different. they are dense and fudgy and everything you want a brownie to be. i bumped up the espresso powdered a bit to not only give the dark chocolate a little more depth but also bring out the coffee flavor out a bit. the white chocolate chips replaced the m&m’s in tracey’s recipe because i figure the white chocolate represented the “cream” in my coffee-ish brownies.

almond flour brownies

almond flour brownies

  • 1/2 c (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, browned and cooled to room temp
  • 5 oz dark chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1-1/2 tbs instant espress powder
  • 3 eggs, room temp
  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 c almond flour/meal
  • 1 c white chocolate chips
  1. preheat oven to 350F. spray a 8×8 in baking pan with cooking spray. line with aluminum foil, leaving some overhang so you can lift the brownies out the pan once thery’re baked. spray foil with cooking spray.
  2. in the bowl of a double boiler, melt together the browned butter and dark chocolate. whisk in the espresso powder and cocoa powder. set aside to cool to room temp.
  3. in a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla and salt. add the chocolate mixture to the egg mixture; whisk to combine. stir in the almond flour until just combined. stir in the white chocolate chips. pour into the prepared pan and smooth out evenly. bake 28-30 min or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. remove from the oven and cool completely.


recipe slightly adapted from: tracey’s culinary adventures

this post is linked up to these fun link parties! what’s cookin’ wednesday, what’s in your kitchen wednesday, taste and tell thursdays

oatmeal cookie bars

i would like to make a public plea right here and now to the makers of after sun lotion to PLEASE for the love of all things holy to STOP putting glitter and other sparkly stuff in their lotions.

i mean i know there is the standard after sun lotion out there that has been around for like ages but i’d something that smells yummy too. ya know something that smells like the tropics?

and it seems like if i want to have a tropically smelling after sun lotion i have to get the glittery, sparkly lotion. that would be all fine and dandy if i were either a 5 year old or a stripper but i’m neither so i’d appreciate a yummy smelling lotion that doesn’t make me feel like either.

so i’m looking at you bath and body works. subtle shimmer my ass.

can we agree to take the glitter and sparkly stuff out of the lotion?


i’ll make you some cookie bars.

these are really yummy and should buy me some serious leeway with the lotion people. i mean they’re totally the love child of an oatmeal cookie and brownie’s cousin, blondie. c’mon. how can that not be good? plus you throw some toffee bits in there with the oats in there with the two different types of chocolate chips.

oatmeal cookie bars

oatmeal cookie bars

  • 1-3/4 c flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 c rolled oats
  • 3/4 c (1-1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1 egg, room temp
  • 1 egg yolk, room temp
  • 3/4 c semisweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 c dark chocolate chips
  • 3/4 c toffee bits
  1. preheat oven to 375F. spray a 9×13 in baking pan with cooking spray.
  2. whisk together the flour, baking soda and oats in a bowl; set aside. beat together the butter, sugars, vanilla, salt, egg, and egg yolk until fluffy, about 2 min. add the dry ingredients, chocolate chips and toffee bits; mix until just combined. press into the prepared pan and bake 18-20 until lightly golden brown around the edges. remove from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.

so how soon after lotion hq receives these do you think the new sparkleless lotions will come out?


recipe adapted from: mel’s kitchen cafe

this post is linked up to these fun link parties!! what’s cookin’ wednesday, what’s in your kitchen wednesday and taste and tell thursdays

salted caramel brownies

i have decided that i am no longer turning on the news.

i mean it seems like every time i do something terrible happens.

so the news is no longer allowed in my house. only the stories of the good coming from the bad. which means traditional news is banned because we all know the adage, “if it bleeds, it leads.”

not doing it anymore.

i’m going to focus on the good and the things i’m grateful for. (if you want to follow along with my gratitude challenge on instagram, you have perfect timing… i just started yesterday!)

i’m also going to focus on brownies. more specifically on these salted caramel brownies. which just so happen to be some of the best brownies i’ve ever tasted. no joke. like i really really really liked them. i mean of course i liked them. ina developed them for her new book, barefoot contessa foolproof; although i found them in the food network magazine. but where i found them isn’t the issue. i mean it’s ina. i haven’t made one of her recipes that isn’t amazing. and these brownies are just that. and honestly, if you wanted to, you could leave the caramel off and they’d still be amazing. they really are that good. oh and here’s the thing…. ina uses store bought caramel sauce (gasp! i know!). nothing wrong with that. BUT there’s also nothing wrong with spending a little extra time while the brownies are in the oven baking and making your own on the stove top. also, i didn’t have instant coffee granules in my pantry but i did have instant espresso so that’s what we’re going with ok? good.

salted caramel brownies

salted caramel brownies

  • 1 c (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 8 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 3 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 tbs instant espresso granules
  • 1 tbs vanilla
  • 1 c + 2 tbs sugar
  • 1/2 c + 2 tbs flour, divided
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 6 oz semisweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 c caramel sauce (homemade or good quality store bought {ina suggests fran’s})
  • 2 tsp good quality sea salt
  1. preheat oven to 350F. spray a 9×13 pyrex dish with cooking spray.
  2. in a double boiler, melt together the butter, 8 oz semisweet and unsweetened chocolate. allow to cool for 15 min.
  3. in a large bowl, stir together (don’t beat!) the eggs, instant espresso, vanilla and sugar. stir in the cooled chocolate mixture and allow the mixture to continue cooling to room temp. before you continue any further make sure your mixture is no warmer than room temp!!
  4. in a medium bowl, sift together the 1/2 c flour, baking powder and kosher salt. add to the chocolate mixture; stirring until just combined. toss together the remaining 2 tbs flour and the chocolate chips and add them to the batter; stir together. spread evenly into the pan. bake 35 min or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  5. if you are making your caramel sauce, you want to try to time it so your caramel is ready about 5 min before the brownies come out the oven so it has time to cool slightly before pouring. if you are using jarred caramel sauce, as soon as the brownies come out of the oven, heat the caramel sauce until it’s pourable and stir until smooth. pour your caramel sauce over the brownies and sprinkle with sea salt. cool completely before cutting into bars.


recipe very barely adapted from: ina for food network magazine

this post is linked up to these fun link parties!! what’s cookin’ wednesdays, what’s in your kitchen wednesdays, and taste and tell thursdays

fluffernutter pretzel toffee bars

so do you ever have to make a bargain with yourself to make yourself do something you don’t feel like doing?

i totally do….


no joke. every morning i have to bargain with myself so i get out of bed and get to work on time.

my morning thoughts kinda go a little like this…

“damn… make that noise stop… damn…. seriously…. that was not a 10 min ‘snooze’ cycle…. damn i really do have to get up…. really get up…. you can sleep late on saturday… ok….. damn.”

don’t get me wrong… i’m one of the few people that actually like my job but i’m not a morning person. or maybe it’s more correct to say i’m not a person that wants to get up at 630 in the freaking morning. i do ok if i can sleep until like 8am but i do even better if i can sleep until 9a.

what does that to do with bars?


i just thought i would see if any one else out there makes those kind of deals with themselves.

so these bars…… they are one of those “classic” combinations. i mean let’s be real… it’s a combination that has it’s own name. mint and chocolate can’t claim that. you don’t hear anyone saying chocomint. and even peanut butter and jelly doesn’t have it’s own name. we just shorten the names and keep the “&” for pb&j.

i never partook (partaked?) in a fluffernutter sandwich growing up. i was more of a peanut butter and honey sandwich kid. that was what my grandfather made me and i loved it. but i can fully appreciate the wonder that is peanut butter and marshmallow creme. all the creamy gooiness. then you throw in some pretzels for some salt and chocolate and toffee chips. sold.

fluffernutter pretzel toffee bars

fluffernutter pretzel toffee bars

  • 1-1/4 c flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 c (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 c crunchy peanut butter – i used this honey roasted version
  • 1 egg, room temp
  • 1/2 c semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 c dark chocolate chips
  • 1/2 c crumbled pretzels
  • 1/2 c toffee bits
  • 1/2 c marshmallow creme
  1. preheat oven to 350F. spray a 9×9 baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. sift together the flour, baking soda and baking powder in a bowl; set aside.
  3. beat together the sugars, butter, vanilla and salt until light and fluffy. add in peanut butter and beat until smooth. add in egg and beat until combined and fluffy. slowly add in the dry ingredients and mix until it just starts to come together. add in the chocolate chips, pretzels and toffee bits.
  4. press dough into the prepared dish. dollop the marshmallow creme on top and spread it around (as best as marshmallow creme will let you).
  5. bake 28-32 min until the edges start to brown. remove to a cooling rack and let cool completely before cutting.

now if i could just make it to saturday without trying to cut a deal with myself….


recipe slightly adapted from: bakeaholic mama

this post is linked up to these fun link parties: what’s cooking wednesday and taste and tell thursdays