Tag Archives: semi-sweet chocolate chips

Chocolate Chip Toffee Brownies

I wish I could tell you that these Chocolate Chip Toffee Brownies are healthy and low-calorie…but they are definitely not! What they are is dense and very, very rich. Probably the only healthy ingredient is the unsweetened cocoa powder, which gives them a great chocolate flavor. Then there’s the chocolate chips, which make them extra chocolatey. And finally, the toffee bits which bake into the batter and give these brownies a subtle caramel flavor.

When you are craving something sweet and chocolatey, these brownies are a great thing to make. Just make sure you have lots of people to share them with so you’re not tempted to eat the whole pan yourself! But, they do freeze well so you can always save the extras for later if you don’t want to share…I’m just sayin’ 🙂

CHOCOLATE CHIP TOFFEE BROWNIES by NancyC

Makes a 9×13″ pan

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup Half & Half (light cream)
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 (8-ounce) package toffee bits, divided (use 1 1/4 cups for the batter; save 1/3 cup for topping)
  • 2 cups (12 ounces) mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided (use 1 2/3 cups for the batter; save 1/3 cup for topping)

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a 9×13″ baking pan with parchment paper (or spray with cooking spray); set aside.

In large bowl, cream softened butter and sugars. Then blend in eggs, vanilla, and Half & Half, mixing until smooth.

In medium bowl, whisk flour, salt, and cocoa powder together. Add this dry mixture to the butter/sugar/egg mixture, half at a time, mixing until everything is combined.

Fold in the toffee bits and mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, stirring to distribute evenly in batter. Pour or spoon batter into prepared 9×13″ pan, spreading batter evenly in pan. Sprinkle 1/3 cup each of the remaining chocolate chips and toffee bits over the batter.

Bake at 350˚F for 42 to 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let brownies cool completely in pan before cutting into squares. If using parchment paper, after brownies have cooled completely, lift the uncut brownies out of the pan with the parchment paper edges, then cut into squares.

It’s hard to resist a good brownie! Thankfully, the weather is getting nicer and I’m hoping to get outside more and exercise these brownies off! Do you have a weakness for brownies like I do?

Sharing this recipe at Fiesta Friday, Meal Plan Monday, Weekend Potluck, Inspire Me Monday.

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Chocolate Chip Scones

Chocolate Chip Scones @ NancyCThe first time I had these scones, they were made by Priscilla. She brought them to work as a snack for a co-worker’s birthday, and they were really good. She had made them with dried fruit and everyone wanted the recipe. The second time I had these scones, Brenda had made them and brought them into work. She had been craving chocolate, so she decided to try them with chocolate chips instead of dried fruit. And of course, they tasted just as wonderful.

I decided to try these scones with chocolate chips, too– those mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, because you get more bits of chocolate in every bite! They’re a great treat for breakfast and they even make a great dessert–or a snack in the afternoon!

CHOCOLATE CHIP SCONES by NancyC, adapted from a recipe by Priscilla T.

  • 1 cup sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks), room temperature
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips (note: instead of chocolate chips, you can substitute dried fruit and/or chopped nuts)

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Lightly grease or line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine sour cream or Greek yogurt and baking soda; set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, cream of tartar, and salt. Cut in butter using a pastry blender.

Stir the sour cream or yogurt mixture and then the egg into the dry ingredients until just moistened. Fold in the mini semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Turn onto a floured surface and knead briefly. Roll or pat dough into a round 10″ disc that is 3/4″ thick. Cut into wedges and place on parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake at 350˚F for 17 to 20 minutes, until lightly golden. Serve warm or let cool completely.

These scones have a great texture–they’re a little moist, but not too moist. They’re sweet, but not too sweet. I think they’re best when they’re warm from the oven, but they’re pretty good when they’ve cooled, too. You can’t go wrong with these scones! I think they’re one of my favorites. Do you like making scones? What’s your favorite kind to make?

Sharing this recipe at Fiesta Friday, Meal Plan Monday, Weekend Potluck, Create with Joy.

Jumbo Oatmeal Cranberry Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I start thinking about making recipes with cranberries as soon as the fall season comes around. Cranberries, whether they’re fresh or dried, are such a classic autumn and holiday ingredient. It just wouldn’t seem like Thanksgiving or Christmas without cranberries, would it? And because these cookies have dried cranberries, along with white and semi-sweet chocolate chips, they’re perfect for making this time of year when the days are chilly, evenings come earlier, and cookie baking and giving are in full swing.

These cookies are big, thick, and chewy–the kind of cookie you want to have when you’re sitting in a big, comfy chair with a mug of hot cocoa, wrapped in a warm blanket and maybe watching a favorite movie or reading a good book. Did I mention that these cookies also have oatmeal in them too? It always makes me feel a little better when a cookie has oatmeal in it–somehow, cookies with oatmeal just seem a little healthier, don’t they?

JUMBO OATMEAL CRANBERRY CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES by NancyC

Makes about 18 cookies

  • 3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup white chocolate chips
  • parchment paper, for lining cookie sheets

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

In large bowl, blend butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well; set aside.

In a medium-size bowl, combine oats, flour, baking soda, and salt. Add half of this flour mixture to the egg/butter/sugar mixture and mix well; then add in the rest of the flour mixture and mix all ingredients well.

Fold in the dried cranberries, semi-sweet chocolate chips, and white chocolate chips; stir until these are evenly distributed in batter.

Drop dough by 1/4 cupfuls, 2 inches apart, onto parchment-lined cookie sheets (if dough is too sticky to work with, refrigerate it for 5 to 10 minutes before putting on cookie sheets). You should be able to fit 6 cookies per sheet. Bake at 350˚F for 12 to 13 minutes, or until very lightly brown (do not overtake, or cookies will be dry). Cool on cookie sheets for 1 minute, then move to wire rack to cool completely.

Baking cookies is a great thing to do when it’s cold outside–it makes everything so cozy inside! Do you like making cranberry-flavored goodies this time of year too?

Linked to Fiesta Friday, Meal Plan Monday.

Colossal Cookies

Colossal Cookies @ NancyC

There’s a little cafe I sometimes go to that sells Colossal Cookies. I thought the cafe came up with that name, but apparently there really is a type of cookie that is officially called a Colossal Cookie! They’re typically made with oats, peanut butter and chocolate chips. And you’d never know it, but there’s no flour in these–just a little baking soda!

A friend and co-worker of mine, Rick, emailed me a recipe for these cookies and I also checked one out at Allrecipes–they were pretty similar. I made a few small changes in the amounts of oats and chocolate chips used, and they turned out really well! Some recipes say to flatten the cookies a little with a fork before baking–I tried baking these flattened and unflattened, and I like them unflattened better–they come out a little thicker and chewier.

The batter for these cookies is very thick and there’s a lot of it, so you’ll want to use your largest mixing bowl when you make these!

COLOSSAL COOKIES by NancyC, adapted from Allrecipes

Makes about 34 large cookies

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups chunky peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 5 3/4 cups quick cooking oats
  • 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

In an extra-large bowl, cream butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, then stir in the vanilla extract and peanut butter, mixing well. Mix in the baking soda, then add the oats and chocolate chips until well blended–you should end up with a thick dough). Drop 1/4 cupfuls of dough 3 to 4 inches apart on parchment-lined cookie sheets (I baked 8 at a time on my cookie sheets). You can flatten the dough slightly with a fork if you want a cookie that’s a little flatter, wider, and more crispy, but if you like your cookies thick and chewy, don’t flatten! I didn’t flatten mine.

Bake at 350˚F for 15 to 17 minutes, until cookies just start to turn golden. Cool for a few minutes on cookie sheets, then place cookies on wire racks to cool completely.

Colossal Cookies II @ NancyC

I really love these oaty, chewy, chocolatey, peanut butter cookies! Have you ever made or heard of Colossal Cookies?

Featured on Meal Plan Monday.

Linked to Fiesta Friday, Weekend PotluckInspire Me Monday, Show and Share, Create It Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Favorite Things Thursday.

 

Dark Chocolate Cranberry Pecan Blondies

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If you’re looking for something sweet to sink your teeth into, these blondies are exactly what you need! Some blondie recipes I’ve made before were more on the thinner side. But these are really thick and chewy. And they’re packed with dark chocolate (or semi-sweet chocolate) chips, dried cranberries, and chopped pecans…a really yummy combination of flavors!

pearson-logoI had just received a sample bag of Georgia pecans from Pearson Farm so I used them in this recipe. Pearson Farm has been growing pecans for over 100 years and they are really good! In addition to their fresh raw pecans that I received, they also sell salted, roasted, and chocolate-covered varieties. I love to much on raw pecans as a healthy snack and use them in dessert recipes when I’m baking. But pecans can also be added to healthy foods like salads, yogurt, and smoothies for a little extra nutrition. They contain vitamins and minerals like vitamin A, E, and B1, calcium, potassium, zinc, thiamin, and magnesium.

I like to think pecans make desserts a little healthier, too, so I thought they’d be great paired with dark chocolate and dried cranberries in this blondie recipe. I was so happy with the way these blondies turned out–a combination of rich, buttery taste with the chocolate-cranberry-pecan goodness mixed in!

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DARK CHOCOLATE CRANBERRY PECAN BLONDIES by NancyC, adapted from Taste of Home

Makes an 8 x 8″ pan

  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips (or substitute white or milk chocolate chips)
  • 2/3 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line an 8 x 8″ square baking pan with parchment paper and lightly grease or spray with cooking spray; set aside.

In small bowl, soak dried cranberries in hot water for one minute to soften and plump them; drain well and set aside.

In medium bowl, cream butter and brown sugar together, blending well, then add in the vanilla extract and eggs, blending eggs in one at a time.

In another medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Add this mixture to butter mixture and mix until all ingredients are combined.

Fold in cranberries, chocolate chips, and chopped pecans. Evenly press batter into prepared pan.

Bake at 350˚F for 38 to 40 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 20 minutes, then lift out of pan with edges of parchment paper. Cool completely on wire rack, then cut into squares.

Note: when these blondies are cooling, they do sink a little in the center, but don’t worry when that happens–that’s just what they do!

I often use pecans in my baking–they go well in so many different recipes! Do you use pecans much in your recipes?

Linked to Show and Share at Coastal Charm, Let’s Get Real Friday at Joy Love Food, and Inspire Me Monday at Create with Joy.

Dark Chocolate Candy Cane Fudge

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If you haven’t had the chance to use up your candy canes before or on Christmas, here’s a yummy sweet treat you can make with those leftover candy canes! This Dark Chocolate Candy Cane Fudge is super-easy to make and the dark chocolate-candy cane combination tastes really great! Part of the recipe calls for heating sweetened condensed milk in a saucepan, and this works best with a nonstick saucepan (it helps prevent the sweetened condensed milk from sticking to the bottom of the pan). And be sure to stir it constantly when heating to prevent browning or burning. When I mixed the melted chocolate in with the butter and condensed milk, my mixture was not super smooth and creamy–it actually had a pretty thick consistency–but I just patted the mixture evenly in the 8″ square pan, topped it with the crushed candy canes, and it came out fine.

DARK CHOCOLATE CANDY CANE FUDGE by NancyC, adapted from Food.com

Makes an 8″ square pan of fudge

  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 (10-ounce) bag dark chocolate chips
  • 1 (12-ounce) bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1/3 cup crushed candy canes

Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper, leaving several extra inches of overhang and grease paper with butter or lightly spray with cooking spray.

Heat sweetened condensed milk in a medium nonstick saucepan, stirring constantly, until mixture just starts to bubble or almost starts to bubble (I cooked mine on medium heat for about 5 minutes–that should be long enough).

Remove from heat and add dark chocolate chips, semi-sweet chocolate chips, and butter to the sweetened condensed milk in the saucepan; cover and let sit about 3 minutes. Then add peppermint extract and stir everything until smooth. Pour or spoon into your prepared 8-inch pan (my mixture was pretty thick, so I had to spoon it in the pan and press it with a piece of waxed paper to spread it evenly). Sprinkle with crushed candy canes, slightly pressing the candy canes into the warm fudge mixture; then chill for several hours, until firm, and cut into small squares.

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I usually end up with extra candy canes after Christmas, so I love recipes like this where I can use them up in a yummy way! Have you made any good candy cane recipes this year?

Chocolate Chip Muffins

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I realized that it’s been awhile since I made anything with chocolate in it, so I thought it would be a great time to make some Chocolate Chip Muffins! These are nice and cake-y, with lots of chocolate chips in every bite! In fact, it’s so chocolatey, you don’t need a glaze on this muffin because it’s plenty sweet all on its own. The muffin tops do brown around the edges, as you can see in the photo–so be sure not to over-bake, or the whole muffin top will get brown as well and the muffins will be on the dry side. If you like chocolate for breakfast or brunch, these are perfect…and they make a great afternoon snack, too!

CHOCOLATE CHIP MUFFINS by NancyC

Makes 21 muffins

  • 3 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup non-GMO Canola oil or light olive oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup milk or light cream (Half & Half)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plain or vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1 (12-ounce) package semi-sweet mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375˚F. Line 2 standard-size muffin pans with 21 paper liners; set aside.

In large bowl, blend flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In medium bowl, mix oil, eggs, milk or light cream (Half & Half), and vanilla, blending well. Blend in the Greek yogurt, mixing well.

Pour liquid mixture into flour/sugar mixture and mix until just combined–do not overmix! Fold in the chocolate chips, blending evenly into the batter.

Spoon batter into the lined muffin cups, filling slightly more than 3/4 full. Bake at 375˚F for 16 to 17 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let muffins cool in pan for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely (or go ahead and eat them warm!).

Now that the weather has cooled off  a little, I’ve been enjoying doing more baking. What have you been baking lately?

Linked to Fiesta Friday at The Novice Gardener and Inspire Me Monday at Create with Joy.