Saturday, November 22, 2014

Yellow Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

As you all already know by now, I am a sucker for cupcakes.  Really any flavor or variety will do, for any occasion.  I made these Yellow Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting for my mama's birthday!  I knew I wanted to make cupcakes for her but wasn't 100% sure what kind until I Can't Believe It's Not Butter approached me.  They asked that I use their new I Can't Believe It's Not Butter original spread that is made with zero, count them ZERO, preservatives.

Let's be honest, baking with something besides butter had me a little nervous.  Would these really turn out!?  I can whole heartedly say that they did, and dang were they tasty!

Start by combining flour
And baking powder in a bowl
Give it a quick stir and set aside for later
In the bowl of a stand mixer, add sugar
I Can't Believe It's Not Butter original spread
In the bowl as well.
Mix on medium speed for about 2 minutes or until it is light and fluffy
Add in two eggs and mix again, scrape the sides down
And add in some vanilla
And milk.  Mix again and..
Add in the flour and baking powder and mix, just until it is combined.
Scoop the fluffy batter into a muffin tin lined with cupcake liners and bake for 22 minutes
Then get to work on the butter cream. Starting with a little I Can't Believe It's Not Butter! Spread
Whip it up for about a minute until it is light and fluffy
Add in some powdered sugar
And a tablespoon, yep a tablespoon of vanilla.
Give it a good whip again and you are good to go!
Take the cupcakes out of the oven and let them cool.
Once they are cooled, scoop the Vanilla Buttercream into a piping bag
And pipe away.  If you don't want to be fancy you can totally just lather the frosting on with a butter knife. 
I have to say, the end result turned out pretty stinkin' cute!
And incredibly tasty!
I have never baked with I Can't Believe It's Not Butter before so I didn't know what to expect.  Sure, I have smothered warm banana bread with it for years but baked with it?  Nope!  I was very happy when these turned out so perfect and dare I say..moist!? :) 
I also love that the new and improved I Can't Believe It's Not Butter is now made with real, simple ingredients that I can recognize!  It is made with plant-based oils which are a source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids as well as omega-3 ALA.  So, maybe we can consider these a health food? :) Maybe not, but I do feel good about my husband and I eating them! 

I should also mention that there was no waiting time as I Can't Believe It's Not Butter is spreadable right from the fridge and doesn't require any time for it to soften!  A total bonus when I am banking on a baby's nap schedule or for her to be happy in her high chair for 15 minutes at a time! 

I am so happy I branched out from my days of spreading I Can't Believe It's Not Butter on my banana bread.   For other great recipes using I Can't Believe It's Not Butter, check out their website! Give the new I Can't Believe It's Not Butter a try and when you do, be sure to review the recipes here

Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting 

For the Cupcakes
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the Frosting 
5 cups confectioner's sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract 

For the cupcakes: 
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  

Combine the flour and baking powder in a small bowl, mix to combine.  Set aside.  

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the sugar and I Can't Believe It's Not Butter.  Mix on medium high speed for 2 minutes, until light and fluffy.  Add in the eggs, milk and vanilla.  Mix again until combined.  Slowly add in the flour and baking powder mixture while on low speed, just until combined.  Scrape the sides down and mix until fully combined.  

Scoop into a muffin tin lined with cupcake liners.  Bake for 22 minutes total, rotating 1/2 way (11 mins) in to ensure equal baking.  

Once the cupcakes are baked, remove from the oven and let cool on wire cooling racks.  

For the frosting: 

While the cupcakes are baking, combine the I Can't Believe It's Not Butter spread, powdered sugar and vanilla extract in the bowl of a stand mixer.  Mix until fully combined and fluffy.  

Once the cupcakes are fully cooled, frost as desired.  I used a piping bag and star tip but you can frost yours with a butter knife, add sprinkles and they would be just as nice!  


I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Thank you, Clever Girls and I Can't Believe It's Not Butter for sponsoring this post!  Sponsored posts make running my blog financially possible and I am beyond grateful to have opportunities to team up with brands that our family loves and uses daily!   They make supporting my blog (and family) a little easier!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Gluten Free Apple Pancake Dippers with Sweet Cider Syrup

Is there anything more fall than apple?  Besides pumpkin, I really don't think there is!  Apple and cinnamon flavors immediately make me feel cozy and festive.  

Tastefully Simple sent me their new Gluten Free Apple Cinnamon Pancake Mix and I was thrilled to try it out!  I don't need to eat gluten free foods but my brother did for a few years when he was in high school.  That was a while ago (I won't say how long go Jeff :) and there weren't a lot of gluten free options available and the ones that were--were terrible!  So I was intrigued to try these pancakes.  

We found that the pancakes had a surprisingly fluffy texture especially compared to the products I have tried in the past.  Not to mention these pancake dippers came together in a flash which is excellent when you are rushing to scarf down food while the baby sleeps! 

 I started off by following the directions on the package
 Pour the mix into a large bowl
 Add one egg
 And whisk.
Let stand for 10 minutes and stir again
I scooped the batter into a very-well greased muffin tin and baked them for about 18 minutes. 
Meanwhile, I made a little Sweet Cider Syrup by using this Sweet Mulled Cider Mix
All I did was add it to plain old maple syrup and heated it on the stove while the dippers baked 
 And here is the finished product
 Fluffy Gluten Free Apple Pancake Dippers with a Sweet Cider Syrup
The perfect dip!

Gluten Free Apple Pancake Dippers with Sweet Cider Syrup 

For the dippers 
1 packet of the Gluten Free Apple Pancake Mix 
1 egg
1 cup milk
Cooking spray

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the pancake mix, egg and milk in a large bowl with a whisk.  Let stand for 10 mins once it is combined.  After 10 minutes, stir again.

Then grease a regular sized muffin tin with cooking spray and scoop the batter into the tin.

Bake for 15-18 minutes or until they turn golden brown.

For the Sweet Cider Syrup

1 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon Sweet Mulled Cider Mix 

Combine the maple syrup and cider mix in a small sauce pan with a whisk.  Place on medium heat to warm.  Once it bubbles, it is done.

To serve, remove dippers from muffin tin and dip away!

Recipe by: Mrs. Schwartz

**DISCLOSURE: I was provided with free products with this post and was also compensated.  However, all opinions are my own.  As always, you cannot buy my love, baby.**

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Halloween 2014

How was everyone's Halloween!?  Ours was fantastic and a few weeks worth of celebrating, just like I like a holiday to be!  
 We kicked it off with spending time with our nieces, Addie's cousins at Nana and Papa's.
 We carved pumpkins and roasted the seeds.
 I let them pick out a design online when I googled "simple jack-o-lantern designs" as I knew they would see an Anna or Elsa pumpkin and want me to carve it into their pumpkins.  Auntie is crafty but not that crafty. I promise you Ava was way more into it than it shows in the picture : )
Of course Papa snuggled his littlest granddaughter
 The next weekend (the weekend before Halloween) we met up with our buddy Sam for coffee.
 Then headed down to the Anoka Halloween Parade! Not sure if you are aware of this but Anoka is the Halloween capital of the world!  You can tell too, this town gets decked OUT for Halloween.  It was the best parade we have ever been too since everyone was all dressed up and tossing TONS of candy.

Addie was a champ and loved watching the parade.  
 The weather was absolutely perfect.  If by some miracle we have weather like that again for the parade, we will be going again!
 I loved this headless horseman

 I think Nana had an okay time.

 Halloween day we went to visit Papa who had shoulder surgery just two days before.  We picked him up and brought him to our house to pass out candy and see...
 Minne Mouse in all her glory! She didn't mind the costume but really hated that hat.  We passed out a lot of candy and the grandparents came to hang for a bit.  Aaron was out of town hunting ('tis the season right) so we went back to Nana and Papa's for a sleepover.
Minne was exhausted.  

I can't wait for next Halloween! My mom (Nana) has already asked if she can make Addie's Halloween costume next year.  I'm already thinking of ideas :) 

But we have tons of holidays before then!  Next up…Thanksgiving!