Strawberry Filled Chocolate Cupcakes.

A deliciously airy cupcake filled with a sweet strawberry filling, and topped with a luscious and airy chocolate frosting. These cupcakes are sure to be a hit this Valentine’s Day or any day!  

Hello! I am back from a much needed Caribbean cruise on Royal Caribbean’s newest ship, Harmony of The Seas! It was a lovely holiday, but I am certainly glad to be home just in time to leave again in 2 weeks for Arizona to visit my boyfriend! Haha! I also happened to become an official adult while on holiday! I have to admit, I did smoke a cigar and play a little craps on the cruise… I honestly thought for some odd reason I’d wake up on my 18th birthday and feel complete different but that was not the case. It’s really weird to be 18. This Is the age I would always think of as a child and see it as so far off and now I’m here. So strange. Life just keeps moving faster the older I get!

 Enough about me! Let’s talk cupcakes! The other day I was just thinking that I really wanted to post another Valentine’s Day type recipe because it’s fun! These cupcakes are amazing! I’ve always been a sucker for chocolate and strawberry, but these cupcakes are something else! I mean, that strawberry filling is freaking amazing! I could eat that stuff by the spoonful! You really can’t go wrong with a chocolate cupcake and chocolate frosting, so when you spice ’em up with a little strawberry it’s perfection. You’ll fall in love!…With these cupcakes and your love of course! 😉

I had a lovely helper in the kitchen named Charlotte. I mean, look at those eyes! What a beauty, inside and out. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing this girl since the day she was born and now she’s about to turn 8! I can’t believe it. How the time flies. Did I mention that we’re Aquarius buddies? Well, we are. Air signs for life! ✌🏼

From the bottom of my heart, I hope you have an absolutely wonderful Valentine’s Day full of joy and love! Even if you’re single, do something special for yourself! You deserve it!

Here’s the recipe!

Strawberry Filled Chocolate Cupcakes.

Ingredients

    For the cupcakes
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa power
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup oil (vegetable or coconut are both fine)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For the strawberry filling
  • 3 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2½ cups fresh strawberries (sliced)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons strawberry Jello
  • For the chocolate frosting
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 Tablespoons vanilla coffee creamer (optional)
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

To make the cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a muffin tin/tins with cupcake liners; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Once the mixture is combined, set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the oil, sugar, eggs, milk, and vanilla. Once the mixture is combined whisk the wet ingredients into the dry, whisking until no lumps remain. (Do not overmix.)

Using a small ice cream/cupcake batter scoop or spoon, scoop the batter into the cupcake liners filling them ¾ of the way full.

Tap the muffin tin on the counter before placing in the preheated oven to ensure there are no air bubbles. Bake the cupcakes for 15-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Once the cupcakes are done, allow them to cool completely.

To make the frosting

Put the butter and heavy cream in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (or in a large mixing bowl using a handheld mixer fitted with the whisk attachment) and beat the butter and heavy cream on medium-high speed until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Now add the creamer, cocoa powder, powdered sugar, and salt. Beat on medium-high speed until light, smooth, and fluffy (about 2-5 minutes). Place the frosting in a piping bag if desired, or use a frosting knife/spatula.

To make the filling

In a medium sauce pan toss the sliced strawberries and cornstarch together then add the sugar. Place the sauce pan on the stove on medium heat stirring the mixture until the sugar dissolves. Turn the heat down to low. Cover the mixture and allow to cook for about 10 minutes. Once the mixture is soft, using a potato masher, mash the strawberries leaving some strawberry chunks. Stir in the strawberry Jello and bring the mixture to a boil on high heat. Allow to boil for about 2 minutes while stirring. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 20 minutes before filling the cupcakes.

To fill the cupcakes

Once the cupcakes are cool, core them (saving the cored parts) using a cupcake corer or knife (just cut a little circle out of the middle to make a spot for the filling.)

Put about 1 Tablespoon of the filling in the center of the cupcake them put the cored piece back in.

Frost the cupcakes as desired and garnish with some Valentine’s Day sprinkles or a couple strawberry slices.

The cupcakes will stay fresh stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Enjoy!!!

http://www.bellabakes.net/strawberry-filled-chocolate-cupcakes/

Enjoy!

Red Velvet Cake.

Looking for the perfect treat to make this Valentine’s day? (Or any day) You’re in luck! 

Hello there lovelies!! I am so excited about this recipe! I have been wanting to develop and bake a red velvet cake for so long and I finally did it! This is the first Valentine’s Day ever that I won’t be single! I honestly have never cared much about Valentine’s Day but it will be less depressing to not be single. For all the single peeps out there, it’s honestly not as amazingly magical to be in a relationship for Valentine’s Day as you may think. I honestly don’t think there should be one day a year to be romantic. You shouldn’t have to have an excuse to do something romantic for your significant other! If you’re single do something for yourself! Have a spa night with some friends or screw it, order a pizza and binge watch a show on Netflix! 🙂

You will FALL IN LOVE with this cake!! It’s the perfect combination of dense and light and the frosting is the perfect combination of sweet, rich, and creamy! This cake also gives your tongue some nice color lol! This bad boy is also super simple to make!

You whisk the dry ingredients (minus the sugar) in a large mixing bowl, then you whisk the wet ingredients (with the sugar) together in a medium sized mixing bowl, then you make the decadent cream cheese frosting in the bowl of a stand mixer.

The hardest part is dividing the batter among 3 cake pans and then my least favorite part of making any cake is frosting the cake. It’s totally worth it though!

I just know you’ll love making and eating this cake!

Here is the handy dandy printable recipe!

Red Velvet Cake.

Ingredients

    For the cake
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cups vegetable oil or melted coconut oil
  • 1½ cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1¼ cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon red gel food coloring
  • For the frosting
  • ½ cup unsalted butter (soft)
  • 8 oz cream cheese (soft)
  • 3 cups powdered sugar (sifted)
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Instructions

To make the cake

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease and flour 3-8 inch round cake pans and line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl whisk the dry ingredients together, minus the sugar. In a medium mixing bowl whisk the wet ingredients, plus the sugar, together. Once everything is combined add the mixture to the dry ingredients whisking until no lumps remain.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pans, dividing the batter evenly.

Tap the pans on the counter before placing them in the oven to ensure there are no air bubbles.

Bake the cakes in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean.

Allow the cakes to cool completely before frosting.

To make the frosting

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or with a handheld mixer beat the butter and cream cheese together until smooth and combined. Add the powdered sugar, heavy cream, vanilla, and salt and beat until combined, adding more powdered sugar or heavy cream if needed to reach desired consistency.

To frost the cake

Put a dollop of frosting on a cake stand or serving plate and invert the first cake layer on the cake stand or plate. Remove the parchment paper as you invert each layer. Frost the top of the first cake layer and invert the second layer then frost the top and invert the third layer. Frost the whole cake using a spatula or frosting knife. Decorate the cake with some Valentine’s day sprinkles if you’re feeling festive!

This cake will stay fresh stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Enjoy!

http://www.bellabakes.net/red-velvet-cake/

Just remember, in order to receive love from another person or give genuine love to others, you must learn to fall deeply in love with yourself and your higher power. ❤️

Minty Cookies and Cream Icebox Pie.

Minty, creamy, and rich, this pie is sure to be a hit! 

Hello there! Happy Wednesday! Today I have for you this lovely and simple pie. I freaking love icebox pies and so will you because they are super easy! You don’t even touch the oven, which is quite magical some days, let me tell ya! It’s even more magical when something is super easy AND delicious! You will fall in love with this pie! The sweetness of the Oreos paired with the slightly tart richness of the cream cheese is perfect!

Let’s talk making the pie!

You start by greasing a pie dish with butter or nonstick spray and set that bad girl aside.

Make the crust by placing the Oreos in a food processor and pulsing until you have a nice fine crumb then you will add the melted butter and pulse until combined, then press this mixture into the pie dish and place in the freezer until needed.

Now you’re gonna beat the cream cheese in a stand mixer or with a handheld mixer in a large mixing bowl, then you’ll add the powdered sugar, peppermint extract, food coloring, and Coolwhip. Mix until smooth and combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Now spread half of the filling into the crust and top with the crushed Oreos then top with the other half of filling and drizzle the melted chocolate on top of that mixing it in slightly to create a marble effect. Top with the rest of the crushed Oreos, cover with foil, then place in the freezer for at least 3 hours before serving.

That’s it!

Here is the recipe! I hope you enjoy it!

Minty Cookies and Cream Icebox Pie.

Yield: 1 Pie

Ingredients

    For the crust
  • 25 mint cream Oreos
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter (melted)
  • For the filling
  • 8 oz cream cheese (very soft)
  • ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract
  • ½ cup powdered sugar (sifted)
  • 8 oz Coolwhip
  • 10 crumbled mint cream Oreos
  • ¼ cup semisweet chocolate chips (melted)
  • green food coloring

Instructions

To make the crust

Grease an 8 inch pie dish with nonstick spray. Set aside.

Put the Oreos in a food processor and pulse until they are a fine crumb. Add the melted butter and pulse until combined. Press this mixture into the pie dish pressing up the sides of the dish. Cover with foil and place in the freezer.

To make the filling

Beat the cream cheese in a stand mixer or in a mixing bowl with a handheld mixer on high speed until smooth. On low speed, add the powdered sugar and peppermint extract and mix until incorporated. Using a spatula or large spoon fold in the Coolwhip and a few drops of green food coloring, or more depending on how green you want the pie.

Once everything is combined, get the crust out of the freezer and spread half of the filling into the crust and top with half of the crumbled Oreos then spread the remaining filling on top and drizzle the melted chocolate and top with remaining Oreos. Cover the pie with foil and place the pie in the freezer for at least 2 hours before serving. Let the pie sit out for about 5 minutes before cutting.

Pie will stay good or up to 1 month stored in an airtight container in the freezer.

Enjoy!

http://www.bellabakes.net/minty-cookies-and-cream-icebox-pie/

Have a day almost as wonderful as you!

I’m Not Going to College.

I know, I know, I’m missing out on the college experience, how will I find a job, and oh dear, how will I live without the stress of student loans?! I will answer all of these questions, don’t you worry. 

Yes, I was homeschooled. No, I will not be attending college along with my peers. No, I have not been to one single day of traditional school. Yes, I can function like any other human. Yes, I am horrible at spelling, and I can’t do any more than 6th grade math (that’s because I have a disability), but I can do everything that I need to do for any job that I may want and if, for some reason I don’t know something, I have no problem with asking and learning. I don’t need a 4 year education for that.

I am going to start off by telling you why I have absolutely no desire to attend college. School has never been my thing, in fact, it kind of breaks my soul. I have always been a more artistic and free spirited type of person, so the thought of sitting in a classroom for 8 hours makes me want to curl into a ball and cry in a corner. Being the type of person I am, being tied down to a college would lead me down a long winding staircase of depression and at the bottom there would be a door that would open up only to show a life of failure and if not failure then unmanageability. I also have no idea what I want to do for a “career” or if I even want a “career”. What I do know is that I want to be a wife and a mother. I honestly am okay with trying many different things. I’m not someone who can stick with one thing. I like trying different things and finding new passions and interests. I don’t know where that will lead me, but I’m down for the ride! I have a job that I love at the moment. It may only be 3 days a week for a few hours but I don’t need more than that right now, and when I do need more I will find more and everything will fall into place as it always does.

I don’t know many 18 year olds who do know what they’re doing with their lives; all they do know is that have an unmanageable amount of pressure and an overwhelming number of voices telling them that everything will fall to shit if they don’t send in that application and choose some major that they think sounds like it will make them money or be interesting. Then a year passes and they still have no idea what direction their life is going in because they’ve found that they don’t even want to work in a field that has anything to do with their major, but screw it it will look good if they get a masters and before they know it 7 years have passed and they’ve gone nowhere. They’re waiting tables and struggling to make rent because they’ve racked up so much debt in student loans that they can’t wrap their little educated heads around it. But hey, that adderall they were using “just to focus” is getting them through the long work day of that job they never even wanted just fine. This is the story of too many young Americans. Do what you love. Screw the standards on eduction and what people think is best for you. You know better than anyone what fills your cup, so go for it! Follow your dreams. That’s what I’m doing.

As for the “college experience” I’m just fine without the parties, drugs, meaningless hookups, and cheap alcohol. So thanks, but no thanks on the whole college thing.

If you disagree with me that’s fine but these are my beliefs and if you have a problem with that then I’m sorry, please keep your words to yourself. Thank you.

Who needs college when you can just look smart?! Just kidding.

Angel Biscuits.

These are the lightest and fluffiest biscuits you’ll make. Once you have angel biscuits, regular biscuits just won’t be quite as good. 

post-9I knew nothing of angel biscuits until my sweet great grandmother started talked about how they were her favorite. I then asked my nana about them and she told me that they were amazing! She said they were super light and fluffy and yummy so I found a recipe and baked them for Easter a few years ago and they were a hit! They lived up to the hype! I’ve been baking them myself ever since. Somewhere along the way I stopped using a recipe and started adding my own touches. Then I realized I had made it my own and I was like, “Why have I not posted this yet?!” So here goes! You’re gonna love them!!

The thing that makes these biscuits different from others is yeast! Yes, yeast! That’s what makes these biscuits so light and fluffy! It also adds that nice yeasty flavor. This is a great recipe to try if you want to use yeast but you’re a little scared. It’s hard to mess up with the yeast in this recipe.
post-4post-5It’s super easy to make these bad boys!

You just preheat the oven, line a baking sheet/jellyroll pan with parchment paper, dissolve the yeast in warm water along with sugar, combine the dry ingredients, add the wet along with the dissolved yeast, mix away until a dough comes together, roll out the dough, cut the dough using a biscuit or knife, put the biscuits on the prepared sheet, then bake em’ up until they’re golden brown! 🙂

post-8post-7Enjoy these yummy biscuits!!! Here’s the printable recipe!

Angel Biscuits.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 20-25 biscuits

Ingredients

  • ½ cup warm water
  • 1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 4-5 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ cup oil of your choice
  • 2 cups buttermilk*

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 425ºF and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking pad; set aside.

In a small bowl dissolve the yeast in the warm water and 1 Tablespoon of sugar, allow to sit for 5 minutes.

While your yeast dissolves, combine 4 cups of the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, and baking powder in the bowl of a stand mixer.

With the stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment** on low-medium speed, add the dissolved yeast, oil, and buttermilk to the dry ingredients. Mix until combined and no longer sticky. Add more flour ¼ cup at a time, if needed.

Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and roll or press the dough out until it is ¼ to ½ an inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter***, cut the dough and place the unbaked biscuits onto the prepared baking sheet.

Bake the biscuits for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown.

Notes

*If you do not have buttermilk, you can make your own by adding a splash of vinegar to your milk and allowing it to sit for 5 minutes. **If you do not have a stand mixer, you can stir the ingredients by hand. It will just take more effort and take longer. You can also mix the dough in a food processor. *** If you do not have a biscuit cutter, you can use the rim of a small glass to make outlines for you to cut with a knife.

http://www.bellabakes.net/angel-biscuits/

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Have a beautiful day! Stop and smell the roses! 🌹❤️

Very Vanilla Scones.

These scones are the perfect combination of decedent vanilla along with rich sweetness.

post-7These scones are freaking amazing! We had them for breakfast New Year’s Day and I am so happy these were my first meal of 2017! They are so light, and airy, and rich, and sweet. They’re just perfect! Scones are one of my all time favorite things because they’re not just breakfast, they can be an afternoon snack or even dessert! You’ll fall in love with them! post-2

post-3
Another thing that’s great about scones is they’re super easy to whip up! You just combine the dry ingredients and then you cut in the butter, then you add the vanilla caviar (the little specks you scrape out of the vanilla bean), egg, and heavy cream. You may need to add more cream, depending on how dry your dough looks. Personally, I like to mix everything with my hands because then I can feel if everything is combined. Now you roll the dough out on a floured surface and cut with a small biscuit cutter or cut them with a knife. If you want to have triangle scones you can use a pizza cutter! You will now bake the scones for about 15-ish minutes or until they’re golden brown and you’ll let them cool off a little before you put the icing on them. To make the icing, you just whisk the heavy cream and vanilla bean paste together then add the rest of the icing ingredients. Ice them scones with a spatula or you can just dip them in the icing. Serve them straight away (which is what I do because I can’t sit there starring at my food without eating it) or you can wait for the icing to harden on the scones. That’s it!

post-10post-5I hope you enjoy these scones as much as my family and I!

Very Vanilla Scones.

Yield: 20-25 scones

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ Tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup unsalted butter (cold and cubed)
  • caviar of 1 vanilla bean (the stuff that’s inside of the bean)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1¼ cup heavy cream*
  • For the icing
  • ¼ cup heavy cream*
  • 3 Tablespoons vanilla coffee creamer
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla bean paste (the price is high for this because the bottle supplies more than a years worth. There is also a vanilla shortage right now)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking pad; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or fork. Once the mixture has a crumbly texture, add the egg, vanilla bean caviar, and cream and stir until a dough comes together.

Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and roll out to ½ inch in thickness. Using a biscuit cutter, cut the dough, then place on the prepared baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Allow scones to cool for 5 minutes before icing.

To make the icing

Whisk the heavy cream and vanilla bean paste together then add the powdered sugar and salt. Whisk until smooth and combined.

Using a spatula, ice the scones and set the iced scones on a cooling rack or plate and allow to sit until the icing hardens or serve straight away.

Enjoy!

The scones will stay fresh for up to 4 days if stored in an airtight container .

Notes

*You may need to add more depending on how dry the dough is.

*You may need to add more to reach the desired consistency of the icing.

http://www.bellabakes.net/very-vanilla-scones/

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Have a lovely day!! 🙂

Healthier No-Bake Cookies.

No-bake cookies have been one of my favorites since I was a kid! It’s always nice to have a healthier version of your favorite treats! 

post-4Hey there folks! Happy Monday and happy 2017!! Can you believe it? 2017! Just the other day I dated something 2013. Time flies, man.

I love starting a new year it’s a fresh start and you always get to set a new intention. My intention for this year is to love myself because that’s not something I’ve always been good at, and loving God and others with my whole heart, mind, and soul.

I just want to make it clear that I’m not posting this “healthier” recipe today because of those stupid new year diet resolutions. I’m sorry, but I can’t handle all of these ads and before and after pictures. You’re good enough as you are. I like to make healthier recipes sometimes because I like to nourish my body with things that it likes, not because I am encouraging you to lose weight or starve yourself for the new year. That’s BS. I just wanted to make that clear. As someone who has struggled with body image and an eating disorder it’s super annoying to have ads pop up every 10 seconds telling me that I’ll be a “better me” if I lose 30 pounds. I will not become a better me by working out for hours everyday and not enjoying a bowl of ice cream. I will become a better me by serving God and others and loving me for me, not telling myself “I’ll love you when…” You would never walk up to a friend and say “I would love you so much more if you just lost 15 pounds” so stop saying that to yourself! Sorry for my rant, back to cookies.

post-4post-3May I say these are the perfect breakfast treat!

I was super impressed at how much these cookies taste like classic no bake cookies! The only things I changed in the recipe was brown sugar and honey instead of granulated sugar and coconut oil instead of butter! They are super yummy and packed with protein from the peanut butter! These are also perfect for throwing in school lunches to keep your kiddos going throughout the day! Or to keep us big kids going! 🙂

post-3I hope you enjoyed my ranting and I hope you enjoy this yummy recipe!!!

Healthier No-Bake Cookies.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup honey
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ cup almond milk
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups quick cooking oats

Instructions

Line a large baking sheet with wax paper; set aside.

On medium heat, melt the honey, brown sugar, cocoa, milk, peanut butter, and coconut oil together, whisking constantly until melted and combined.

Turn the heat down to low and fold in the vanilla, salt, and oats with a rubber spatula. Once everything is combined remove from heat.

Using a small ice cream scoop, cupcake batter scoop, or spoon, drop about ½ Tablespoon sized balls onto the wax paper and place in the fridge to harden.

Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.

Enjoy!!!

http://www.bellabakes.net/healthier-no-bake-cookies/

 

10 Things I Learned in 2016.

It’s been a fast one, but I’ve learned a hell of a lot. Way more than what is written below.

post-2

  1. Screw people-pleasing.
  2. If I don’t open up I’m going to be lonely, and it’s no one’s fault but mine. (In the past I have enjoyed blaming others for that.)
  3. Being confident doesn’t make me stuck up.
  4. I’m a woman, a real, beautiful, dignified, confident, woman. (I sometimes forget that.)
  5. If I worry about the future I’m sabotaging my enjoyment of the present.
  6. Dignity and confidence are everything (and I finally have both of them).
  7. Other people can’t make choices for me. (I’m a big girl and I can unapologeticly make choices for myself even though I get scared.)
  8. Prayer works. (I say that every year.)
  9. Making people feel sorry for me won’t make them like me. (Been there. Still do it sometimes and it still doesn’t work.)
  10. Society’s standards are unrealistic bullshit. (sorry for the profanity)

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace, where there is hatred let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is discord, unity. Where there is doubt, faith. Where there is despair, hope. Where there is sadness, joy. And where there is darkness, light.

May I not so much seek to be consoled, as to console. To be understood, as to understand. To be loved, as to love.

For it is in giving, that we receive. It is in pardoning, that we are pardoned. And it is in dying, that we are born into eternal life.

Amen.

To close this year and begin the new one, I invite you to listen to the song “Oceans’ by Hillsong United. It’s just a perfect song to reflect, meditate, and get inspired by. As a girl who forgets sometimes that God has my back it’s good to have a beautiful piece of music like that to remind me of just how big God is.

May your New Year be a bright one filled with joy and love. Xoxo 💗

Where I’ve Been.

It’s been a (not-so) quick minute. 

It’s been a few minutes since I’ve posted as you already know, and I’ve missed it so much. So much came up all at one time, and all of a sudden I’m like a grown up making grown up decisions that affect the rest of my life which is super stressful, and scary, and awesome.

First, I got into a long distance relationship with a wonderful goofball whom I happen to be quite fond of. Then, I started babysitting 3 days a week for a few hours. I also signed up for a 200 hour yoga teacher training, started interning, and I’m about to start a few college classes. The yoga teacher training I sadly had to drop out of because it was too much with everything else.

I really want to get back into this whole blogging/baking thing again though. I love it. It keeps me sane. I would like to get on a schedule for the blog that way I can have at least 2 posts a week up. I also intend to work on the growth of the site and the content and design. I hope that you will continue to follow me along on this wonderful journey!

Thank you for your love and support!

Sincerely,

Shelby

Very Chocolate Cupcakes.

A luscious chocolate cupcake, filled with a chocolate cream, and topped with a chocolate buttercream. 

post-10Hey guys! Sorry I’ve been M.I.A for the past few weeks. As you know from my Instagram I’m in training to become a yoga instructor! I had my first weekend of training last weekend and it was mind blowing! I am so grateful to be in this training with the other women in my class and we are blessed with amazing teachers. Gratitude overflows my heart! It’s so much fun and for the first time ever I enjoy studying! It’s truly wonderful!

post-15Enough about me, let’s talk chocolate! My favorite part of these cupcakes is the filling, for sure, I mean how can you go wrong with half and half, chocolate chips, and chocolate pudding?!? It’s rich and chocolatey and delicious! I know you’ll love these cupcakes as well! These would be the perfect girls night treat! Or any night for that matter!

post-8post-3postThese cupcakes seem like they require more work, but really they’re pretty easy to make! You will just combine the wet ingredients together then combine the dry and slowly add the wet to the dry until everything is incorporated and no lumps remain. Now you’re gonna spoon the batter into the cupcake liners filling them ¾ of the way full so that when they rise they’re not overflowing the brim but aren’t under, just perfect! Now bake the cupcakes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean; allow them to cool completely.

Now make the chocolate filling by putting the chocolate chips in a medium bowl then you’re going to heat the half and half in a microwave safe bowl in the microwave for about a minute and thirty seconds or until boiling. Add to the chocolate chips whisking vigorously now add the chocolate pudding mix and whisk until smooth set in the fridge until needed.

Now make the frosting by beating the butter and heavy cream together until smooth and fluffy then add the salt, vanilla powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and chocolate pudding mix and beat until nice and fluffy. If you want, you can place the frosting in a piping bag or you can just frost the cupcakes with a frosting knife.

To prepare the cupcakes you’re gonna core the cupcakes with a cupcake corer or knife and fill them with the chocolate filling then put the cored piece back in the center and frost the cupcakes as desired. You can garnish the cupcakes with a little of the chocolate filling and serve. Enjoy!

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Here’s the recipe! 

Very Chocolate Cupcakes.

Yield: 15 cupcakes

Ingredients

    For the cupcakes
  • ½ cup vegetable oil (I used coconut)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs (room temp)
  • 1 cup buttermilk (or milk with 1 Tablespoon vinegar)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ½ cup all natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • For the sauce
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • ½ cup half and half
  • 4 Tablespoons chocolate pudding mix
  • For the frosting
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, very soft
  • ¼ cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder (sifted)
  • 3 cups powdered sugar (sifted)
  • 2 Tablespoons chocolate pudding mix

Instructions

To make the cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350ºF and line your muffin tin/tins with cupcake liners; set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the wet ingredients until combined.

In a large mixing bowl whisk the dry ingredients together making sure everything is combined.

Slowly whisk the wet ingredients into the dry. Whisk vigorously until just combined.

Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin filling the cupcake liners ¾ of the way full. Bake for 15-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool completely.

To make the chocolate sauce

Place the chocolate chips in a medium mixing bowl. In a small microwave-safe bowl heat the half and half for 1 minute and 30 seconds or until boiling. Add the half and half to the chocolate chips whisking vigorously until smooth then add the chocolate pudding and mix. Set in the fridge until needed.

To make the frosting

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or in a large mixing bowl with a handheld mixer, beat the butter on high speed until smooth. Now add the milk, vanilla, salt, cocoa powder, chocolate pudding mix, and powdered sugar. Beat on low speed working up to high speed, beating on high until light and fluffy. Put the frosting in a piping bag for frosting the cupcakes, if desired.

To assemble the cupcakes

You will start by coring the cooled cupcakes using a cupcake corer or knife, saving the cores. Now using a teaspoon fill the centers of the cupcakes with the ganache up to the top then put the cored center back in. Now pipe the frosting on the cupcakes or frost using a spatula or knife. Top with a little more ganache and chocolate chips if desired.

Cupcakes will stay fresh for up to 5 days stored in an airtight container in the fridge.

Enjoy!

http://www.bellabakes.net/very-chocolate-cupcakes/

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Bake with love! <3