Cheerio Marshmallow Bars

Have you ever accidentally bought your kid PLAIN cheerios when they are on a steady diet of the Honey Nut kind? Well let me tell you what happens… toddlers toss those little oat rings right on the floor and demand the sweet goodness they deserve. Since I’m not one to waste food, I turned them into a tasty treat, using an updated version of everyone’s favorite cereal bar recipe. Score 1 for Mom.

 

Ingredients:
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
10 ½ oz. bag mini marshmallows
5 cups plain Cheerios
½ cup chocolate chips
½ cup peanut butter chips

Line a 9×9 baking dish with parchment paper. In a microwave safe bowl, melt butter for 30 seconds at a time until fully melted. Add bag of mini marshmallows to melted butter and microwave on high for 1 minute. Mix butter and marshmallows together with a rubber spatula (marshmallows should be fully melted and smooth). Fold Cheerios into marshmallow mixture until combined. Allow to cool for 30 seconds, then add chocolate and peanut butter chips. Using spatula, press mixture into lined baking dish. Cut into squares when cool. Enjoy!

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes

Dark Chocolate CupcakeI think desserts should be indulgent, with the perfect balance of rich and sweetness coming together.  I love making these cupcakes, because it’s a rich, dark chocolate cupcake with a light, fluffy, sweet Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting. The balance of the two together work perfectly.

Dry Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
1 ¼ cups cocoa
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt

Wet Ingredients:
1 cup milk
½ cup brewed coffee
½ cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 ½ tsp. vanilla
½ cup boiling water
Find the recipe for the Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting here.

dark chocolate cupcakes 2Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Add dry ingredients to bowl of stand mixer.  Add wet ingredients, except for boiling water and mix on medium speed to combine thoroughly.  Reduce speed to low and add the boiling water.  Turn mixer up to medium-high for 2 minutes.  You want it to whip thoroughly but not splash out of the bowl!  Adding boiling water to chocolate cake recipes allows the flavor of the cocoa to blend out of the cocoa powder and reach its full flavor.   Place cupcake liners in cupcake tin.  Distribute batter evenly, there will be enough for 24 cupcakes with each liner about ¾ full.

Bake on center rack of oven for 15-18 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.  Top with Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting or other frosting that you love.

Enjoy!

Marshmallow Buttercream Frosting

Dark Chocolate CupcakeThis frosting is a lighter and fluffy alternative to a traditional buttercream.  It’s somewhat less sweet, and definitely less dense, thanks to the substitution of marshmallow creme (fluff) for some of the butter and sugar that is found in a traditional buttercream recipe.   It is a great frosting for my Dark Chocolate Cupcakes.

 

 

Ingredients:
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
1 ½ tsp. vanilla
1 tbsp. milk
1 container (7 oz.) marshmallow crememarshmallow buttercream frosting

Let butter come to room temperature until very soft, about two hours.  Using the paddle attachment in a stand mixer, mix butter, vanilla, milk and ½ sugar on low, until combined.  Mix on high for 2 minutes.  Turn mixer off and scrape frosting down off sides with a spatula and add another cup of sugar.  Stir on low to combine and then mix on high for 2 minutes.   Scrape down and repeat with remaining ½ cup sugar.  Whip on high for approximately 5 minutes on until fluffy.  Add marshmallow creme and combine on low for one minute.   Frosting will be light, fluffy and sweet.  I like to pipe frosting onto cupcakes but this can easily be spread with spatula.

Have fun with colors and piping patterns!frosted cupcakes

Enjoy!