Category Archives: Cake

Black Bean Brownies

A while back, a friend (Hi, Blake) loaned me a healthy cookbook and I finally made a recipe out of it.

Here’s what I did (I doubled the recipe):
I mixed together  3 cups of drained black beans (it was about 2 cans), 1 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder, and 3 eggs in a bowl til the consistency is smooth (the recipe called for 2 tablespoons of espresso powder, but I skipped that because I don’t have any!).  I ran into a bit of a conundrum with this part because the original recipe calls your you to process it in a food processor. The movers packed mine up, so I put the beans in a bowl and smushed them with the back of a spoon.  My consistency was pretty smooth, but probably not as smooth as Rocco would have gotten it!

Keith and I taste-tested!

Next, add in 4 tablespoons of low-cal, sugar-free chocolate syrup, 4 tablespoons of reduced-fat sour cream, 2 tablespoons of melted butter, 1 cup of Splenda (or whatever sugar substitute you prefer), and 2 teaspoons of vanilla.  Mix this all together til it’s smooth again.  The recipe calls for you to process it again, but my whisk worked just fine.

Now, pour the batter into a greased baking pan.  The original recipe calls for an 8×8 pan, but since I doubled it I put it in a 9×13 pan.

Pop it in the oven for about 35-40 minutes, or until it passes the toothpick test.  After the pan cools, you can cut it into 24 pieces and it comes out to about 53 calories per brownie.  I sprinkled a few chocolate chips on top and I only made 20 brownies, so my calorie count wasn’t quite that low!


Chocolate Jello Pudding Cake

This past week Keith scheduled the movers to come in about 3 weeks, so I’ve decided to start using up the “extras” that I have in my kitchen.

The first set of cabinets I looked in had 7 boxes of sugar-free, fat-free jello pudding and 5 graham cracker pie crusts.  So, I hopped on the internet and started looking up recipes for those to things.

I found several pie recipes and I’ll post those over the next couple of days, but I also found a chocolate cake recipe that used 2 boxes of pudding!  So I figured since it’s a two-fer, I’d go for it.  Besides, who doesn’t love chocolate cake?!

Here’s what I did:
First, grease and flour a tube pan.  A tube pan is similar to a bundt pan, but not quite as big.  This recipe called for a 10-inch tube pan.

I mixed 1 box (18 oz) of chocolate cake mix, 2 boxes of chocolate pudding mix (I had one dark chocolate and one white chocolate mix),  4 eggs (I actually used the rest of my egg beaters- about 1 cup), 1/4 cup of oil, and 1 cup of water together.

Mix it up until your arm gives out or the batter is nice and smooth. After the batter is ready, pour it into the pan.  It gets REALLY thick REALLY fast because of the 2 boxes of instant pudding.

Next, bake it for about an hour, or til the top is springy.  Once it’s baked through, let it cool in the pan for about 15 minutes then let it cool completely on a wire rack.

When you’re ready to serve it, go ahead and sprinkle it with powdered sugar or drizzle with a chocolate glaze.


Baked Oatmeal

Usually Keith eats Kashi Oatmeal for breakfast, but since the exchange won’t be getting another shipment of for another month (!!), I’ve started making baked oatmeal.  I don’t usually eat anything for breakfast, but I love baked oatmeal, so I’m thinking it’s a good deal all around.

Oatmeal just isn’t very photogenic!

Here’s what I did:
Mix together  3 cups of oatmeal (I used Quaker Oats old-fashioned oats), 1 tablespoon of baking powder, and 2 teaspoons of salt.

Next, mix together 1/4 cup of oil, 1/4 cup of applesauce, 1 cup of milk, 2 eggs, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla (or almond) extract and add it to the oatmeal mixture.

After it’s all mixed together and all the oatmeal is coated with the egg mixture, pour it into a greased 8×8 baking dish. Bake it for about 25-30 minutes at 350*F (176*C).  Make sure you use the “toothpick test” to make sure it’s cooked all the way through. The original recipe calls for double the amount described above baked in a 9×13 pan, but that’s too much oatmeal for the two of us!

After it’s out of the oven and cooled, cut it up into candy bar sized pieces and drizzle with honey.  I usually add about 2 tablespoons of milk to mine to moisten it up.

I make ours the night before so that I don’t have to think before I have my first cup of coffee!!

Mini Pumpkin Muffins

So, I had 3 cans of pumpkin pie mix in my cabinet and I don’t like pumpkin pie….don’t ask me why I had 3 cans! Anyway, I searched Google for recipes using pumpkin pie mix.  I found about a million recipes for how to make pumpkin pie, but only a few on how to use up unwanted pumpkin pie mix.  I searched Libby’s website and just found too many recipes I wanted to try!  Then I found this recipe in my google search results: Oops I Bought Pumpkin Pie Mix Pumpkin Bread.  I thought it was a cute name, so I clicked on it and found that it also gives the time and temp for muffins!  So I went for it.

My heart wasn’t really set on muffins, but I remembered I had a mini-muffin tin in the storage closet.  I asked my husband, in the sweetest possible voice, if he would mind digging in the closet “real quick” for my muffin tin–only whenever he had the time!

This is the storage closet!

After we found the mini muffin pan, my sweater I was missing, 2 boxes full of coat hangers, my hand mixer, some spatulas, a chip clip, and some bumper stickers I headed back to the kitchen.

Here’s how I made the recipe:
In a large bowl, I mixed the flour, salt, sugar, baking soda and baking powder. In a small bowl, I mixed the huge can of pumpkin pie mix, a carton of egg beater (instead of 2 eggs), orange juice, and olive oil.  After that, I poured the pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture and mixed it with my newly-recovered hand mixer.  After it was thoroughly mixed, I stirred in about 1/2 cup of raisins and the rest of my bag of chocolate chips (about 3/4 cup).

I greased my mini muffin pan with shortening and scooped 1 tablespoon of batter into the small muffin wells.  I popped them in a 400*F (200*C) oven for about 9 or 10 minutes.

When I opened the oven door to take the pan out after 10 minutes, I about burned my eyebrows off…so be careful, that oven is HOT! 🙂

My batter made about 90 mini-muffins.  I plan on making a frosting of warm water and powdered sugar to drizzle over some of them, but leave some unfrosted to snack on with my coffee tomorrow morning.


Snickerdoodle Blondies

Today was Keith’s first day back at work after my parents left Bahrain.  When Keith is at work, I tend to get bored.  When I get bored, I either bake or eat–usually both! So I looked up some healthy recipes and I didn’t find any that I wanted to make, next I looked up some dessert recipes that used Nutella.  I found a few, but discovered I didn’t have quite enough for the recipes.

Then I got a craving for sugar cookies. (Random thoughts, but just stay with me!) So I started looking up recipes for sugar cookies, but in the back of my mind I still wanted something chocolate.  After about 30 minutes of being wishy-washy about what I wanted to bake, I found this recipe for Snickerdoodle Blondies! They’re not chocolate, but they are so good, you’ll forget that you wanted chocolate (for a few minutes at least)!

Here’s what ya do:

1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 large egg (I used 1/4 cup of egg beaters)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tbsp sugar + 1 tsp ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350F (176*C). Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil. Spray foil with a non-stick spray (I didn’t do this and it took 5 extra minutes to pick the foil off the bottom of the blondies!)

In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light. Beat in salt, egg and vanilla extract until well combined. Add in flour and stir until no streaks of dry ingredients remain. Pour dough – it will be thick – into prepared baking dish and smooth it into an even layer.

Stir together remaining 1 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp ground cinnamon. Sprinkle dough evenly with cinnamon sugar mixture.

Bake for about 30 minutes, until bars are set and the edges are just very lightly browned.

Let the blondies cool in the foil inside the pan.  If you remove the foil, the edges will crumble and be a disappointment.  It’s hard to let them cool ALL the way, but resist temptation and it will be worth it when you start to try to peel them off of the foil!

I had a few pieces with a glass of milk. Keith had a piece as dessert with his dinner and he said they were great.

Hope you enjoy!!

92 Calorie Pumpkin Muffins

So, I only have 1/2 of a can of pumpkin in my cabinet now. I wanted to use it up before I bought more because I’m trying to keep my cabinets somewhat empty. A few weeks ago when Keith and I were still dieting, I found a healthy recipe on it makes 24 pumpkin muffins for 92 calories and only 1.5 grams of fat! I stretched the batter to 30 muffins, so that’s even less than 92 calories per muffin.

Here’s what the recipe tells you to do:
Take 1 15 oz. can of pure pumpkin and mix it with a box of spice cake mix (I used Duncan Hines).   Add 1 cup of water and bake it as the box of cake mix recommends.

Here’s what I did:
Mix the pumpkin and the cake mix.  If it seems like it’s too thick, add a 1/4 of a cup of water at a time….just so it doesn’t get too runny.   🙂

I baked mine in my silicone muffin pan without liners, but I would highly recommend using a metal pan WITH liners.  I think it would be less of a headache getting them out of the oven and onto the cooling rack.

I don’t know if I’ll make these again. They have the consistency of pumpkin pie…my husband would say they have the consistency of baby food.  I salvaged them by adding a good dollop of Nutella to em.  I know that probably blows the calorie count out of the water, but they sure are good with it! 🙂

Yesterday was a dusty morning!

Chocolate Fudge Cherry Cake

Today I went to the grocery store to buy some disposable cake pans, but forgetting cash, I only had my debit card with me.  I got the cake pans and felt a little embarrassed to pay such a small amount with a card.  So, I walked up and down a few aisles to see if I could think of something to buy.  Of course, I ended up on the baking aisle and bought some dark chocolate cake mix.

I got home and decided I didn’t want to make JUST a chocolate cake, so I sat down at the computer and searched Google for “chocolate cake mix recipes” (or something like that).  It came up with a bunch of recipes, but I weeded them out by the ingredients that I had in my pantry already.

The winner ended up being a recipe from  I forget about that website having recipes and it always surprises me!

It’s simple really.  Here’s what I did:

I mixed 1 box of chocolate cake mix (like I said, I used dark chocolate), 1 can of cherry pie filling, and 2 eggs in a bowl.  I also added a handful or 2 of chocolate chips that I had in the cabinet.  The recipe didn’t call for them, but chocolate chips never hurt! 🙂

I poured the mix into a 9×13 cake pan and baked it at 350*F (or 176*C) for 50 minutes. The recipe called for it to be baked for only 30 minutes, but my batter was still wobbly in the middle, so I kept it in the oven til a toothpick came out clean.

The recipe on had a frosting recipe on the same page, but I usually don’t use frosting because it covers up the flavor of the cake and it’s just so darn messy!

Once I uploaded the picture, I realized that the cake looks kinda funky, so maybe you should put some frosting on it….but you don’t have to. It tastes UH-MAZING without it.