Cherry Almond Sweet Rolls

Good morning guys! I hope you’re reading this today with a mind ready to bake, this one is the PERFECT weekend baking recipe.

Cherry and almond are a classic combo. If you ever get cherry flavored baked goods, they often have a strong hint of almond. Ever loved those pink grocery store cherry cookies? Me. Too. Those babies are cherry almond flavor all the way. In fact, cherry and almond go together so much for me at this point, I pretty much expect one with the other.

Alright so anyways, today we’re putting them in the form of sweet rolls. There’s a couple of reasons why I love this recipe, first of all, it uses a pretty tried-and-true dough for me. If you’ve baked some of my recipes from Sugar High, the bread portion probably looks familiar. It’s an enriched dough, super soft and fluffy, and perfect for all kinds of sweet rolls.

Another flippin awesome part of this recipe is that it uses a jar of cherry jam as the filling. Because look, who is literally ever in the mood to pit a hundred cherries? I get it, fresh is great for some things. But for sweet rolls, a jar of nice cherry jam is really going to do the trick, make it easier, and it’s going to taste fantastic. Sliced almonds and an almond icing bring home the flavor, and it’s super easy!

If you’ve never made sweet rolls, this is a great place to start guys. And if you live in high-altitude like me, you’re going to need to start with a good bread recipe, it’s the most important part! After you let the dough rise once, you’ll roll it out, spread the jam, sprinkle some almonds, and slice it up. Let it rise once more, and bake to golden. Drizzle over a super simple almond icing, and take a whole one to yourself! Enjoy!

Cherry Almond Sweet Rolls

Servings 12 Rolls

Ingredients

For the dough:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tbs. + 1 tsp. active dry yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup very soft butter
  • 5-5 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 tsp. salt

For the rolls:

  • 10 ounce jar of cherry preserves
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. almond extract
  • 2 tbs. milk

Instructions

For the dough:

  1. Heat your whole milk in the microwave until it reaches about 120 degrees. Stir in the sugar and vanilla, and then stir in the yeast. Set aside until lightly frothy and bubbled. 

  2. In a large bowl, stir together the eggs and softened butter. The mixture will be lumpy. Add the yeast mixture into the egg mixture and stir until combined. Add in the salt, and then add the bread flour 2 cups at a time, mixing between, until you reach 5 cups.

  3. Place the dough onto a floured surface, and knead for several minutes, or until the dough is smooth. Add more flour if the dough is too sticky at this point. 

  4. Place your dough into a lightly buttered bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise for about 30 minutes, or until it has risen by about 1/3 in size. 

For the rolls:

  1. Once the dough has risen one time, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll into a large rectangle, about 1/2 inch thick. Even spread the cherry preserves all over the top, all the way to the edges. Sprinkle the sugar evenly over the preserves, and then the sliced almonds. 

  2. Roll the dough into a tight log, starting on the longer side of the rectangle. Slice off the ends of the log to create even edges. Cut the dough log in half, then each of those in half, and each remaining section into thirds. This will give you 12 rolls. 

  3. Lightly grease a 9x13 inch cake pan. Place the rolls evenly into the cake pan, and cover with plastic. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Let the dough rise for about 20 minutes while your oven preheats- the rolls will have only slightly puffed. 

  4. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until the rolls are a light golden brown color. While the rolls cool slightly, make the icing. 

  5. In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, almond extract, and milk until a smooth icing forms. It should be a consistency that will drizzle well, but still hold it's shape slightly. Drizzle the tops of the rolls generously with the icing, and top with more sliced almonds if preferred. Enjoy! 

Banana Bread

Cake, Breakfast | February 23, 2019 | By

Hey guys! Today I’m jumping back into one of my favs- my Grandma’s Banana Bread recipe. You’ve seen me make a version of this before, Banana Crumb Cake, which you can also find in my book, Sugar High. This time around, we’re adding chopped pistachios and baking it up classic, in a loaf.

I’ve got a couple of tricks up my sleeve. I wanted to make this cake a little more moist. Don’t get me wrong, the original is a great recipe, and it’s a perfect coffee cake. But I wanted to make things a bit more cake-like for the loaf version. So I added some extra mashed banana to give it a little extra.

Okay and also, this is my new favorite trick ever guys. You know I bake a lot of loaf cakes, it’s kind of my current favorite. I really love a cake that stands on its own without the need for frosting, and I love the ease of loaf recipes. PLUS, I love that sugary, crisp top that you get on many of those cakes, including this one. I’ve seen a lot of info online recently about dusting your cake pans with things other than flour, including just using regular granulated sugar and guys. It’s everything.

Instead of just getting that sugary top, you can have it all over the edges of your loaf cake. It’s sheer perfection. So ya know, look out for me using this like, idk, all the time from here on out.

So anyways, sugary crust, we got it. I know the classic option for banana bread is walnuts, but I had some extra pistachios from this recipe last week, and it’s just a nice little twist. Honestly, throw any nuts you’ve got on hand in here, or even a handful of chocolate chips alongside ’em. You know what you like, you got this. But for the record, pistachios are a great choice.

Today we’re all snowed in, it’s been a pjs-all-day type of Saturday, and you can find me curled up on the couch with a slice of this pretty thing. Enjoy!

Banana Bread

Servings 10 slices

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 6 tbs. softened butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbs. vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas, over-ripe about 3 large bananas
  • 2 cups flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup roughly chopped pistachios

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and generously spray an 8 inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle the bottom and all sides with granulated sugar, and shake out any excess. Set aside. 

  2. In a large bowl, beat together the sugar and butter until fluffy. Beat in the eggs, vanilla, and mashed banana and mix until combined. 

  3. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Add the dry ingredients into the wet in three additions, mixing well between each addition, and reserve about 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture. Toss the chopped pistachios in the reserved flour, and fold into the batter. 

  4. Pour the batter into your prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake for 60-65 minutes, or until a tooth-pick comes out clean. Cool and enjoy! 

Maple Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

Hey everyone! Thanksgiving is already upon us, what the heck happen??

Thanksgiving is really the start of the holiday season for us, so we’ve already got Christmas decorations up and shining in our house. I know, I know, it’s too early. But it’s not too early, you guys are all wrong!

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 1 Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 2

BUT, we’re still in pumpkin season, so that’s really the important thing to take away from this. I think many of us skip lunch on Thanksgiving, but it’s nice to have a little something for breakfast on the big day, especially if you’ve got company around.

Enter Maple Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls. You guys. It’s the perfect combination of flavors, seriously. A sweet yeast bread, filled with pumpkin and all the spices, and then rolled up with butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Top it with the flippin’ best maple cream cheese icing and seriously, it’s a winner.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 3 Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 4 Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 5

So when I first started making yeast breads, I kind of thought of it as a huge, all day affair type of thing. It takes so long to rise, and shape, and rise again, I always thought it would take me forever. But when you’re baking at altitude, it really doesn’t always take that long.

In fact, because dough rises a bit faster here, I often can get through an entire recipe (like this one) in about 2 hours start to finish. That’s pretty crazy, and with all the downsides to learning how to bake at high-altitude, this just isn’t one of them!

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 6

This is a fairly small batch when it comes to homemade cinnamon rolls- normally you get a batch of somewhere between 12-18. But these make an easy 8 rolls, and I love this smaller-batch form. Hey, I can’t even go through 18 cinnamon rolls, and believe me I’ve come close.

So seriously you guys, if you’re looking for something festive, these are perfect to throw together the evening before Thanksgiving, or maybe just on Tuesday night for snacks throughout the week off!

Maple Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

Servings 8 rolls, frosted

Ingredients

For the rolls:

  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 2 tbs. butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 1/4 tsp. active dry yeast
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. allspice
  • 3 1/2-4 cups flour
  • 3 tbs. softened butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbs. cinnamon

For the Maple frosting:

  • 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. maple extract
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/2-1 tbs. milk

Instructions

For the rolls:

  1. In a small bowl, stir together the milk, melted butter, pumpkin puree, and sugar. The mixture will be thick. Microwave until the mixture is warm (about 110 degrees on an instant read thermometer). Stir in the active dry yeast, and set aside to bloom. 

  2. In a large bowl, stir together the egg and the vanilla extract. Once the yeast mixture has bloomed, it should look a little puffy near the yeast granules, stir the yeast mixture into the egg and vanilla until incorporated. 

  3. Add in the salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and 3 cups of flour. Stir together with a sturdy spatula or a wooden spoon until a shaggy dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and gently start to knead. You will likely need to add a bit more flour while kneading. You are looking for the dough to still be slightly tacky and soft, but strong enough to hold in a ball shape. It should only take about 5 minutes of kneading in additional flour. 

  4. Return the dough to the bowl and cover with plastic for the first rise. You want the dough to grow by just under double in size, as you can see from the photos above. For me, this only takes about 20-30 minutes. 

  5. Return the dough to your floured surface, and begin to pat out into a rectangle. Then use a rolling pin to roll the dough to a rectangle about 10x16 inches. It doesn't need to be exact. 

  6. Spread the softened butter evenly over the dough, all the way to the edges. It will be a very thin layer of butter. In a small bowl, stir together the brown sugar and cinnamon, and then evenly sprinkle the mixture over the butter, again all the way to the edges. With your rolling pin, gentle press the mixture into the dough. Starting on the longer edge, roll your dough into a spiraled log. 

  7. Cut of the edges of the dough, and then cut the dough into 8 even rolls. I use a very sharp knife and a sawing motion here, cutting the dough in half, and then each of those pieces in half, and repeating again to reach 8 total. 

  8. Lightly grease an 8 inch cake pan with cooking spray, and place the rolls evenly into the pan. Cover with plastic for the second rise. Preheat your oven to 375 while the dough rises. 

  9. For the second rise, the dough will only get slightly puffed. For me, this takes about 15 minutes, or about as long as it takes for my oven to preheat. Then, remove the plastic and bake the rolls for 25-30 minutes, until just slightly golden on top. 

For the maple frosting:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, maple extract, salt, and 1/2 tbs. of milk until smooth. Add more milk if needed to reach your desired consistency, though I like to keep my icing a bit thick. 

  2. Frost the rolls in the pan while still hot, and serve warm. Enjoy! 

Chocolate Blueberry Muffins

Muffins, Breakfast, Chocolate | November 12, 2018 | By

Hi all! I hope you are just knee deep in holiday celebrations and fun by now- I most definitely am.

I’m counting muffins as a holiday treat because let’s face it- tis the season to call cake a breakfast item, right??

Chocolate Blueberry Muffins 1

And anyways, I know chocolate and blueberries kind of sound like a weird combo, but it’s actually super good! You get the strong flavors of chocolate, dotted with juicy blueberries and the effect is pretty dang good, especially when you top it with a chocolatey crumb.

I use dark chocolate cocoa powder because it gives me that super strong chocolatey flavor, and it makes the muffins this pretty deep dark color.

Chocolate Blueberry Muffins 2

I’m a fan of crumb toppings in general tbh- I’ve made tons of different crumb cakes on the blog because it’s such a good combo. This is no exception, although this crumb is fairly different than others I have made. Primarily because it’s flavors are heavy on chocolate instead of brown sugar and cinnamon. Regardless, it fits in perfectly with these muffins of course!

Chocolate Blueberry Muffins 5

And if you’re hosting any guests this holiday season, I feel like muffins are the right choice. It’s an easy breakfast or quick little midnight snacks for guests, and it won’t leave you slaving over the stove in the morning. Win-win.

Chocolate Blueberry Muffins 3

And yet another win- muffins are too easy to make man. You can just stir these together by hand, no mixer needed. In fact, it’s better to mix them by hand because you really don’t want to over mix the batter- it can lead to tough muffins. That sounds like a slogan or something to tell your kids right? You can’t always get what you want- tough muffins!

Chocolate Blueberry Muffins 6 Chocolate Blueberry Muffins 7

Alright anyways, enjoy it, it’s really nom you guys.

Chocolate Blueberry Muffins

Ingredients

For the muffins:

  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 1 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6 tbs. melted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 pint blueberries

For the crumb:

  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 tbs melted butter

Instructions

For the muffins:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees, and line a muffin tin with paper liners. Set aside.

  2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, brown sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. 

  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter, buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients into the dry, and stir gently with a spatula or large spoon. Just before the flour is completely mixed, add in the blueberries and gentle finish mixing. The batter will be lumpy. 

For the crumb:

  1. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt, and melted butter with a fork until crumbs form. 

  2. Scoop the muffin batter evenly into your muffins tins. They should be about 3/4 full. Top with a generous sprinkling of the crumb mixture. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool and enjoy!

Chocolate Maple Pecan Granola

Breakfast, Chocolate | October 26, 2018 | By

Hey!

Happy Friday everyone! Today I’m announcing the winners of the recent giveaway with Rodelle Vanilla and Breckenridge Distillery! TBH, I’m so jealous I don’t get to keep all this stuff for myself- it’s all really cool.

The responses were fantastic, and it was so great to hear from everyone!! So, our two winners of Rodelle goodies are Sally W. & Manda and the two winners of the Breckenridge Distillery swag are Ginger & Jeffrey! Look for me reaching out guys!!

Granola 1

Onto the granola! Granola is like. Silly-easy to make you guys. It’s so yummy, and like really customizable. Because I don’t know about you, but it feels like every time I buy a new type of granola, I always wish it were just slightly different. Make it how you want it guys.

Granola 2

You want to stick with generally the same amounts of wet to dry ingredients when you customize. You’ll want to be sure to keep the egg white and oil in tact in this recipe as well- they offer important components. The egg white will help bind things and create a crispy end result, and the oil is another binder in the mix. You can sub butter for oil though!

Granola 3 Granola 4

So I’ve added a little bit of cocoa powder here, as well as maple syrup. The flavors are my kind of treat, and my husband and I just snacked on this bag all week long- it’s so good!

Granola 3

I’ve got to keep things short today guys- it’s about to be a busy weekend! I hope you love the recipe, it’s so easy and really tasty!

Chocolate Maple Pecan Granola

Servings 6 cups

Ingredients

  • 4 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbs. dark cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 300 degrees, and have a large clean sheet pan ready to go, preferably with edges. 

  2. In a large bowl, stir together the oats, pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon, cocoa powder, and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, maple syrup, egg white, and vanilla extract. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and stir until completely coated. This might take a few minutes, but take your time- you really want everything well coated. 

  3. Spread the mixture evenly in your sheet pan. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring once during baking. Cool completely in the pan, and then break up to desired size, and store in an air-tight container. Enjoy! 

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