Pillow Cookies

First whip up a batch of brownies and cut them pretty small. I went with 1/2″ squares (ish) and Bakerella went with 1 squares. Then, as they’re cooling, make a batch of chocolate chip cookie dough (use mini chips). Do you need recipes for these elementary school baked goods?  

The brownies could not be simpler; melt 1/2 cup butter in a saucepan, once it’s melted add 1 cup of sugar and stir till it’s totally dissolved. Then mix in 2 eggs, one at a time and 1 tsp of vanilla. Now dump in 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup cocoa, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp baking powder. It’ll be pretty gloopy, but just mix it in till it’s all one gloopy mass and away you go. Pop them in for about 10-15 at 350. 

The cookies are also painfully easy. Mix 1 cup butter and the 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar till creamy. Then add 2 large eggs, 1 large egg yolk, and 1 tablespoon of vanilla. Yes, a tablespoon not a teaspoon. Mix 2 1/2 cups flour, 2 tsps baking powder, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp baking soda. The add that to the rest of the mix. Now stir in a whole 12oz bag of mini chocolate chips. Chill the dough for about an hour. 

Now, the fun begins! Make a generous ball of cookie dough. Smoosh a thumbprint into it. 

Plunk a brownie into the indentation you just made. Now roll the rest of the cookie ball around the brownie, add a little more dough if you need to. Now giggle. You just hid a brownie in a cookie.  

Repeat over and over. Don’t try to put more than 6 on your tray at a time (assuming it’s an average size tray) because they run together.


Almond Horn Cookies

Dana's Notes: I made these and they were heavenly!!

You Haven't Lived Until You Try One of These!

1 can (10 oz.) almond paste

¾ cup (5 ½ oz.) cups sugar

1 whole egg

Sliced natural almonds, as needed

½ cup apricot jam

1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips, melted, optional

Preheat oven to 375ยบ F degrees. On slow speed in a mixer with paddle attachment, mix the almond paste with the sugar. Gradually add the egg to create a smooth paste. Mix until well blended. Spread the sliced natural almonds out on a large plate. Scoop a scant ¼ cup of the dough and roll it in the almonds, forming each piece into a 3-inch log.(note: you will only get 9-10 cookies at this size, so I suggest making them 1/2 the size). Curve into a crescent shape and position on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until the cookies are lightly browned, for about 12 to 15 minutes.(Bake for 6-8 minutes for 1/2 size) While the cookies are baking, heat the apricot jam in a small pan or in the microwave oven until it is spreadable. Set aside. Remove the cookies from the oven then immediately brush each cookie with the melted jam. Cool the cookies on a wire rack then dip the ends into the melted chocolate if using.

Coconut Caramel Candy Bars

makes 4–5 dozen squares

Bot­tom layer: 

1 cup milk choco­late chips
1/4 cup vanilla chips
1/4 cup creamy almond butter
1/4 cup toasted coconut + 2 table­spoons sprin­kled on top

Sec­ond layer: 

4 table­spoons butter
1 cup gran­u­lated sugar
1/4 cup evap­o­rated milk (not sweet­ened condensed)
1 1/2 cups marsh­mal­low creme
1/4 cup creamy almond butter
1 tea­spoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups chopped roasted almonds

Caramel layer: 

16 oz. caramel sauce: You can either melt 14 oz. of caramels with 1/4 cup cream or make your own home­made caramel. (10X yum­mier if you make your own!! And not that dif­fi­cult. You will need a good qual­ity candy ther­mome­ter. One with a 2 degree gauge is best.)

To make your own: 

1 1/2 cups gran­u­lated sugar
2 table­spoons light corn syrup (this is to help pre­vent crystallization)
1/2 tea­spoon kosher salt
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup unsalted butter
1 table­spoon sour cream

Choco­late layer:

1 cup choco­late chips
1/4 cup vanilla chips
1/4 cup creamy almond butter

First layer preparation: 

But­ter a 9X13 glass pyrex casse­role dish gen­er­ously, and set aside. Com­bine the choco­late chips, vanilla chips, and almond but­ter in a small saucepan and melt together over very low heat until com­bined. Take off the heat and stir in the 1/4 cup of toasted coconut. Spread evenly into the but­tered pan you have set aside. Sprin­kle the remain­ing 2 table­spoons toasted coconut over the top of this layer. Place pan into the fridge until set.

Sec­ond layer preparation: 

In another small, heavy saucepan, melt the but­ter. Add the sugar and evap­o­rated milk and bring to a low boil. Reduce the heat and boil for 5 min­utes.. Remove from the heat and stir in the marsh­mal­low creme, almond but­ter, vanilla, and chopped almonds. Spread over chilled first layer and let set in refrigerator.

Caramel layer preparation: 

In a small, heavy saucepan, com­bine the sugar, corn syrup, salt and water. Bring to a boil and cook, with­out stir­ring (this can cause sugar crys­tals to form), until the tem­per­a­ture reaches 340 degree F.** (see note at bot­tom of post) 

Pull pan off of the heat and stir in the cream, but­ter, and sour cream. It will bub­ble up furi­ously so pre­pare your self for this. Stir until every­thing comes together smoothly. This recipe should make exactly 16 oz. of caramel sauce.

Choco­late layer preparation: 

Com­bine the choco­late and vanilla chips and the almond but­ter in a small saucepan. (hope­fully you are just wash­ing out the same saucepan you used for the other lay­ers…) Pour over caramel layer. Let the whole pan set in refrig­er­a­tor sev­eral hours, covered. 

When ready to serve, take pan out of the refrig­er­a­tor and let set a few min­utes to make cut­ting eas­ier. I only cut what I’m about to serve as the caramel is still quite gooey and will start to ooze out as you can see in the photo. Bars must be stored in refrigerator.

German Chocolate Brownie Bars

 Makes 1 9×13-inch pan of brownies



 16 ounces pecans

 2/3 cup brown sugar, packed

 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

 2 cups (14 ounces) sugar

 4 eggs

 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

 1 cup (5 ounces) all-purpose flour

 1/2 teaspoon salt

 3/4 teaspoon baking powder


 3 egg yolks

 1 cup (7 ounces) sugar

 1/4 teaspoon salt

 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

 1 cup heavy cream

 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 1 1/2 cups toasted, chopped pecans

 2 cups packed sweetened coconut

To make the crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9×13-inch baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray; set aside. 

Place the pecans in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until broken up into tiny pieces. Add the sugar and pulse until combined, then pour in the butter and vanilla. Continue pulsing until combined.

Press the pecan mixture firmly into the prepared pan. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until the edges are golden and the crust feels firm. 

While the crust is baking, make the brownies: In a medium saucepan, melt the butter. Once melted, remove from heat and whisk in the sugar until combined. 

Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. 

Whisk in the dry ingredients until combined and pour the batter into the prepared pan, on top of the pecan crust. 

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out with a few crumbs clinging to it. Allow brownies to cool completely before topping. 

To make the topping: While the brownies are baking, mix the egg yolks, sugar, and salt together in a medium bowl. Beat in the butter, then slowly beat in the cream and vanilla until combined. Pour into a medium saucepan set over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is puffy and begins to thicken (180 degrees), about 15 minutes. Pour the mixture into a medium bowl and allow to cool to room temperature. Stir in the pecans and coconut. Spread all of the mixture over the top of the brownies.

Oreo and Peanut Butter Layered Baby Lattice Pies

Two refrigerated 9 inch pie crusts

16 Oreo Cookies

1 cup creamy peanut butter 

2 tablespoons melted butter 

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and spray 8 muffin cups with non-stick cooking spray. 

2. Unroll pie crusts and cut out eight 4-inch rounds. Press into prepared muffin pan. 

3. Spread 1 tablespoon of peanut butter over each cookie then stack 2 cookies on top of each other. Place 2 stacked cookies into pie crusts. With remaining pie dough, cut long thin strips to prepare lattice top. Follow photos to make lattice tops or use a flat piece of dough with slits cut on top. 

4. Brush melted butter over tops then sprinkle generously with sugar. Bake for 22-26 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool then remove from pan.

Makes 8 pies.

Caramel-Filled Snickerdoodles

Note: I used store bought Kraft caramels, but I highly recommend using anything that is on the soft side to begin with. If the caramels start out rock hard, the cookies will also harden when they cool and will need to be nuked.  Soft caramels or Rolo candies would work best! 

1-Place caramel between two small pieces of dough. 2- Form one large ball. 3- Roll in cinnamon sugar

Caramel Stuffed Snickerdoodles 

Makes 4 dozen cookies


2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup pure vegetable shortening
1 3/4 cups sugar, plus more if needed
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, plus more if needed
2 large eggs
48 soft caramel candies or Rolos unwrapped


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, with one rack in top third and one rack in bottom third of oven. Line baking sheets with Silpat baking mats or parchment paper; set aside. 

Sift together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine butter, shortening, and 1 1/2 cups sugar. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs, and beat to combine. Add dry ingredients, and beat to combine. 

In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the ground cinnamon. Use a small (1 1/4-ounce) ice-cream scoop to form balls of the dough. Break the ball into two and place the caramel into the middle. Form one large ball and roll in cinnamon sugar. Place about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until the cookies are set in center and begin to crack (they will not brown), about 10 minutes, rotating the baking sheets after 5 minutes. Transfer the sheets to a wire rack to cool about 5 minutes before transferring the cookies to the rack. Store in an airtight container up to 1 week.

Wine Linzer Cookies

200 g butter
100 g sugar
a pinch of salt
1 egg yolk
150 g almond meal
180 g flour
spices (a little cinnamon, ginger, cloves etc.)
powdered sugar for sprinkling
Mulled wine jelly
1 orange
100 ml red wine
1 cinnamon stick
2 cloves
1-2 star anises (I omitted them)
180 g canning sugar (3:1)*

For the mulled wine jelly, squeeze the orange juice and mix it with the wine and the canning sugar, add the cinnamon stick, cloves and star anis (I didn't have any).

Bring to a boil and cook for about 4 minutes. Strain the jelly to remove the spices and set aside to cool.

*I didn't have any canning sugar, so I put 150 g sugar and added 1 tablespoon of my grape and thyme jam, cooked it a bit longer until it started thickening. I actually cooked it a bit too long, and when it cooled it got so thick and hard, that I had to warm it up adding a bit more orange juice and it returned being the right consistency.

For the cookies, cream the softened butter with the sugar.

Mix in the egg yolk.

Sift the flour, mix it with the almond meal and the spices (if adding them) and stir into the butter mixture to form a soft dough.

Divide the dough in two, and shape each into a disc. Wrap them in a piece of plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for about one hour or until firm.

Turn the oven on to 180°C.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Roll out one disc at a time between two sheets of parchment paper to about 4 mm thick.

Using a round, 5-cm fluted cookie cutter, cut the cookies and using a thin metal spatula transfer them to a baking sheet (I didn't have the original Linzer cookie cutter, so I used what I had, stars and flowers).

Using a small cookie cutter, cut out the center of half of the cookies - those are going to be the top of the sandwiched cookies.

Bake the cookies in a preheated oven for 10-12 minutes.

Be careful not to over bake them - when you notice the edges start browning, take them out. Let them cool on a cooling rack.

Repeat with the remaining dough. Collect the dough leftovers and chill them before rolling them out again. Since this is the dough rich in butter it gets soft very quickly once out of the fridge, especially with the oven on.

Once all the cookies are done, put all the cookies with the cut out center on a piece of parchment paper and sprinkle them generously with powdered sugar (use a fine mesh sieve).

Spread a little mulled wine jelly on the bottom side of the whole cookies and then sandwich them with the sugar dusted tops.

Let them rest until the jelly has set well.

Warm up slightly the remaining jelly, just enough to make it runny, and fill the top holes with a bit more jelly.

Store the cookies in an airtight container, separating layers with a piece of parchment paper so they don't stick to each other.

I got about 20 sandwiched cookies, although some disappeared before they met that gorgeously tasting jelly.