Pecan Praline Cheesecake

Here we go y’all.

I’m back and I’m motivated.

The reason I started this blog was out of sure passion.

Passion for food, passion for writing, passion for story-telling, passion for life, passion for family…I guess you could say I’m a passionate person 😉

This past year has been kind of crazy/interesting/a roller coaster ride is how I would describe it.

Earlier in the year, I had my heart ripped out of my chest, stomped on, and broken by a guy whose name doesn’t even matter to me now.

Typical.

I started dating someone a few weeks ago.

This past Sunday wasn’t the best day if ya know what I mean.

I’m not going to go into details.

I really, really, really like this guy.

I mean, EXTREMELY.

See those all caps? Mhhhhm I don’t mess around 😉

And no, I don’t fall fast and hard for every guy I meet.

In fact, it was super hard for me to open up to anyone for the longest time.

This time though…this time was different.

I’ve never felt so comfortable with someone in my life…dating wise.

I know, i know, dating can be scary, nerve-wrecking, especially when you start to really like someone.

But not for me. I get super excited.

I truly have to say, I am sooooooooo proud of the woman that I have become.

I have a huge heart.

Especially when it comes to respecting another person’s life situation/feelings/what they have been or are going through.

I’ve learned that sometimes someone may be going through something in their life that they are struggling with.

So, I don’t judge. I’ve been through my hell.

Not to say it doesn’t hurt when things crumble, I mean…I’m human.

Butttttttttttt I can’t fault that person.

Unfortunately, I spent my time chasing the wrong guy last time and now I don’t have the energy left to chase the absolutely, without a doubt, right one. It’s also my turn for someone to come after me.

I deserve it. I’m worth it. I can also make a killer cheesecake 😉

Anyway, y’all know I’m a dessert person and one date night, we shared this amazing pecan praline cheesecake.

Y’all…pralines are my fave and let me tell you…there were chunks of sweet pecans inside of this cheesecake.

I died.

Project!

Y’all know I’m a crust type of gal.

Y’all…this crust. Well…this crust is 100!

I just can’t even begin to tell you.

And then there is this perfect creamy cheesecake filling.

 Now, I didn’t put pecans inside this cheesecake but….the topping.

Oh my TEXAS!

It’s over the top…basically everything you love about a chewy pecan praline.

I mean, I have absolutely no words.

I believe this is what dreams are made of.

I’m also pretty sure this is what heaven tastes like.

I think I really channeled all of my emotions into this damn cheesecake.

I don’t have any regrets about this cheesecake…none at all.

I think I’m in love.

I’m also 100% positive that if someone were to marry me based on my ability to make cheesecake…I’m a shoe in. 😉

Pecan Praline Cheesecake
Author: 
Recipe type: cheesecake
Cuisine: dessert, sweets
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
A perfectly crispy honey graham cracker crust with a sweet, smooth cream cheese filling, topped with a pecan praline sauce that is out of this world!
Ingredients
  • For the crust:
  • 2 c. honey graham cracker crumbs
  • ½ c. melted coconut oil
  • For the filling:
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 16 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¼ c. coconut milk (or regular milk, coconut milk is all I had on hand)
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 T. mexican vanilla extract
  • For the pecan praline topping:
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter
  • 1 c. light brown sugar
  • ½ c. heavy whipping cream
  • ½ t. salt
  • 1¼ c. pecans, toasted and roughly chopped
  • 2 t. mexican vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a large pie pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix the crust ingredients together until full moistened and combined.
  3. Press the crust mixture into the pie plate.
  4. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until set and golden brown around the edges.
  5. Remove the crust from the oven and let cool. Lower the temperature to 300 degrees F.
  6. For the filling, beat together the brown sugar and cream cheese until smooth.
  7. Add in the milk, eggs, and vanilla and mix well. Spread the filling evenly into the baked crust.
  8. Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until the middle is no long jiggly. Let the cheesecake cool completely.
  9. For the pecan praline topping, combine the butter, brown sugar, heavy whipping cream, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat.
  10. Bring the mixture to a slow boil and cook for 3 minutes until the sugar is dissolved and a smooth caramel sauce forms.
  11. Remove the sauce from the heat and stir in the toasted pecans and vanilla.
  12. Let cool for about 10 minutes and then pour the warm pecan praline mixture over the cooled cheesecake.
  13. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight if preferred before cutting slices with a sharp knife.
  14. Enjoy!

 MANGIA!!!

Salted Dark Chocolate Coconut Balls

Alrighty y’all.

It’s Secret Recipe Club time.

I have been up to sooooo much this past month and baking/cooking has taken a backseat in my life.

Really, my blog should be about how to discretely get your friend to fake an emergency via phone call during the worst blind date of your life, put on makeup without a mirror, and get that “i woke up like this” look without actually waking up like that.

I just started a new job that I am extremely excited about last week and I also passed my real estate license exam.

Busy really isn’t the word for it.

Good news is that I am finally learning to balance everything in my life. 🙂 Lucky you…more recipes and chit chat from yours truly.

This month’s recipe comes from Tara the lovely mother and wife behind the blog Tara’s Multicultural Table.

I really enjoyed reading about Tara’s many cultural influences that have played a role in dishes she creates.

Tara was born in Japan, lived in Germany, and her husband is Filipino. Check out her amazing recipe index and you can rest assured you will find recipes from all over the country.

Tara and I are also the same age and both enjoy pastries! Win win!

If you didn’t know I have an extremely large sweet tooth and duh…I made something sweet.

But also a little something salty.

Balance people, balance.

Enter Tara’s Salted Dark Chocolate Coconut Balls.

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This is the easiest little treat to make plus it tastes like a mounds bar with a hint of a salty side.

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Plus coconut soooooooo

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duh coconut = total summer island breeze, take me to the beach, dip my toes in the water feeling.

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I know you can understand my vibe on that one.

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I need a vacation.

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Who is coming with me?

5.0 from 1 reviews
Salted Dark Chocolate Coconut Balls
Author: 
Cuisine: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 36
 
Little sweet balls of coconut dipped in dark chocolate and finished with a pinch of sea salt. Gluten-free.
Ingredients
  • 4 cups unsweetened, shredded coconut
  • 14 ounces of sweetened condensed milk
  • 12 oz. dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • flaky sea salt, for topping
Instructions
  1. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the coconut and condensed milk until the mixture comes together.
  3. Roll the mixture into 1-inch balls and arrange on the prepared baking sheet.
  4. Place the balls in the freezer for 20 minutes to set.
  5. In a small mixing bowl, melt the chocolate in the microwave, stirring occasionally between 30 second intervals.
  6. Dip each coconut ball into the melted chocolate and place back on the baking sheet.
  7. Freeze until the chocolate balls are set.
  8. Top each ball with a pinch of sea salt.

MANGIA!!!

Peanut Butter Pound Cake

Yo.

It’s February.

A.K.A. the best month ever.

Not just because it’s my birthday month either.

February Secret Recipe Club time.

This months recipe comes from Kirstin, the wife, mother, and blogger behind Loving Life.

I really enjoyed Kristin’s recipe index and wanted to try just about everything, but let’s be real…the peanut butter spoke to me…again.

Peanut Butter Pound Cake 

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Y’all…this stuff is no joke.

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Look at all that thickness.

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Hello peanut butter cream frosting!

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Of course I made it gluten-free.

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So sue me why dontcha!

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If you eat this for breakfast with coffee…you might just have magical powers 😉

Peanut Butter Pound Cake
Author: 
Recipe type: Cake
Cuisine: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Thick, buttery pound cake with all the flavor of peanut butter topped with a creamy peanut butter frosting. Gluten-free.
Ingredients
  • For the cake:
  • 1 c. smooth peanut butter, all-natural
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • ½ c. coconut sugar
  • ½ c. unsweetened coconut milk
  • ½ t. pure vanilla extract
  • ½ t. baking soda
  • ½ c. coconut flour
  • For the frosting:
  • ½ c. full-fat coconut milk (refrigerated overnight)
  • 2 T. pure maple syrup
  • 2 T. smooth peanut butter, all-natural
  • 1 t. pure vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a square cake pan with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the peanut butter, eggs, and coconut sugar until smooth.
  3. Stir in the milk and vanilla until combined.
  4. Stir in the baking soda and coconut flour until combined.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
  6. Let the cake cool.
  7. For the frosting, combine the coconut cream, maple syrup, peanut butter, and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl, mixing until smooth.
  8. Spread the frosting evenly onto the cake.
  9. Slice the cake and serve!

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap: Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie Bites

Fah, la, la, la, la.

It’s that time of year again where the cookies come out in full force.

Not just for Christmas, but for a great cause that I am super passionate about.

This is my third year participating in the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap and all of the proceeds go to Cookies for Kids’ Cancer.

This year I wanted to gift my fellow food bloggers with my favorite combo of all time…peanut butter and chocolate.

Enter my Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie Bites.

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Oh, I threw in a touch of cinnamon for a holiday twist.

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Plus, I hear cinnamon speeds up your metabolism, soooo…we can just assume that we are losing weight as we eat these.

These little peanut butter cookie dough balls get dunked in a vat of chocolate.

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Plus, the cinnamon flavor adds a nice little holiday spice.

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Is there anything else you need to know?

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I’m thinking not.

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🙂

A big shout out to the three lovely lady food bloggers that I received cookies from: Christina at Body Rebooted, Lindsey at Cafe Johnsonia, and Brianna at Flippin’ Delicious. All of your cookies were delicious.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie Bites
Author: 
Recipe type: Cookies
Cuisine: American
Serves: 12
 
No bake peanut butter balls spiced with a touch of cinnamon and dipped in a cocoa powder glaze. Gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan.
Ingredients
  • ½ c. natural peanut butter
  • 2 Tbsp. pure maple syrup, divided
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut flour
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon, divided
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 2 Tbsp. cocoa powder
  • ¼ tsp. pure vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. To make the peanut butter balls, combine the peanut butter,1 Tbsp of maple syrup, and ½ tsp. of ground cinnamon until combined.
  2. Stir in the coconut flour until a firm dough forms.
  3. Roll into balls the size of one tablespoon. Place the balls on a large plate and place in the freezer for 20 minutes.
  4. For the chocolate coating, place the coconut oil in a smell bowl and melt in the microwave.
  5. Add in the cocoa powder, remaining 1 Tbsp. of maple syrup, and vanilla until smooth.
  6. Remove the peanut butter balls from the freezer and dip the balls one-by-one into the chocolate coating.
  7. Place the balls back on the plate and place back in the freezer until set.
  8. Devour!

 MANGIA!!!

Rocky Road Brownies

Y’all.

I got sick at the end of last week through the weekend.

For reallllllz.

Like omg I never get sick.

This was the kind of sick that happens when the weather changes, you start sneezing 25 times a day, cough up stuff you never imagined was possible, and take a total of 14 antihistamines in two days that do nothing except knock you out for a goodnights sleep.

I was super bummed.

I had to miss my Tacolandia event on Saturday and declined to go with my best fraannnnd to the Nutcracker Market, which is basically Santa’s Wonderland for adults.

No bueno.

By Sunday I was feeling better and finally decided to look at my Secret Recipe Club assignment.

After living off bland foods for the past 3 days, I wanted something comforting and rich.

Luckily, my secret blogger was Stephanie, the sci-fi loving, moscow mule drinking, loving wife, and cat lover behind the food blog Dessert before Dinner.

Obviously, her blog spoke to me since I am allllllll about dessert.

Enter Stephanie’s Rocky Road Brownies.

It’s like a freaking s’more brownie with gooey chocolate chunks and your choice of walnuts or pecans.

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Is this real life?

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These things hit the spot.

All I need is a big scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Of course, I made them paleo.

Thank you Stephanie for this amazing recipe.

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🙂

5.0 from 2 reviews
Rocky Road Brownies
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert, Brownies
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 9
 
Rich, chocolate brownies packed with melted chocolate chunks, crunchy walnuts/pecans, and gooey marshmallows. Gluten-free, paleo.
Ingredients
  • 8 T. coconut oil, melted
  • 4 oz. dark chocolate
  • ⅓ c. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 c. coconut sugar
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • ½ c. coconut flour
  • ¼ t. salt
  • ½ c. chopped walnuts or pecans
  • ½ c. dark chocolate chunks
  • ½ c. of marshmallows, plus more for topping
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8x8 in. square baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. Melt the coconut oil, dark chocolate, cocoa powder, and sugar in a large mixing bowl in the microwave.
  3. Let cool slightly and whisk in the eggs.
  4. Stir in the flour and salt.
  5. Fold in the walnuts/pecans, chocolate chunks, and marshmallows.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes.
  7. Top the brownies with extra marshmallows and let bake for an additional 10 minutes or until golden.
  8. Let cool slightly and slice into bars.