Category Archives: Desserts

Vanilla Ice Cream with Basil Peach Topping

Lisa, one of our trusty and faithful volunteers, shared this delightful recipe from The Pioneer Woman. It is written with easy steps and pictures to follow. I hope you enjoy it!


Photo from Pioneer Woman



Healthy No-Bake Cookies

When it comes to cookies and chocolate, I just can’t help myself. So, when I find a healthier version of the same recipes I’m currently using I like to share them.

Money Saving Mom just posted a new version to the traditional No-Bake Cookies I’ve been enjoying for years. Check it out:  She substituted the butter for coconut oil, sugar for honey, and added shredded coconut and quinoa to the recipe. Very clever.

Let us know what you think of them!


Heart-Healthy Harvest Cookie

Utilizing my ‘Heart-Healthy’ Vegan and Gluten-Free Cookie Recipe from previous posts, I have now created a fall flavored cookie that will be hard to resist. In fact, my family has devoured an entire batch in just 2 days (and I only shared 4 with friends!). I don’t mind. They are packed with fiber, protein, and calcium. They make the perfect breakfast on the go (paired with fruit of course) or hard workout recovery snack. So eat up and enjoy!

You’ll Need:
1 cup Brown Sugar
0.5 cup Water
16 oz Almond Butter (natural with oil on top OR freshly ground)
2 TSP Vanilla Extract
1.5 cups Oat Flour
1 TSP Baking Soda
1 TSP Salt
0.5 TSP Cinnamon
1 TSP Pumpkin Pie Spice
2 cups Rolled Oats
1 cup White Chocolate Chips

1. In a small sauce pan combine brown sugar and water. Bring to a boil and stir until brown sugar is dissolved.
2. In a large mixing bowl, add almond butter, vanilla and sugar mixture from step 1. Mix well.
3. In a new large mixing bowl, combine all dry ingredients (except chocolate chips). Mix well.
4. Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture.
5. Let dough sit for 5-10 minutes (or until it has cooled). Then stir in the chocolate chips.
6. Now it is time to form your cookies. Use a teaspoon to scoop a clump of dough into your hand. Roughly form a ball of dough. Then place it on the cookie tray and flatten it to ~0.25 inch thickness.
7. Bake cookies for 10 minutes at 350 F.

Peach, Cherry and Berry Crisp

Do you happen to have fruit that is reaching the end of its desired shelf life or has been hanging out in your freezer for a while? If so, this may be a great rescue opportunity.

You’ll Need:
6-12 Peaches (fresh or frozen, sliced)
1-2 lb Cherries (fresh or frozen, pitted)
8-16 oz Blueberries or Blackberries (fresh or frozen)
8-16 oz Cranberries or Plums/Plouts (fresh or frozen)
1 cup Bread or All Purpose Flour
1 cup  Oats
1 cup Brown Sugar
1 cup Butter (or 2 sticks)*
Dash of Salt
*1 stick of butter might be enough if looking for a slightly healthier alternative.

1. Place peaches in a greased/oiled 9×13 dish and top with cherries and berries. The fruit should fill the entire dish.
2. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes at 400 F.
3. Mix flour, oats, brown sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl.
4. After fruit has baked, pour the dry mixture over the fruit.
5. Drizzle the butter evenly over the dry mixture.
6. Bake for 30 minutes at 400 F or until the crisp is golden brown.
7. Allow to cool for 30 minutes before serving.

Fresh fruit crisp pairs well with those frozen dairy desserts! Perfect for National Ice Cream Day (in the event you need an excuse). 😉

Daily Dose of Vitamins – Smoothies Galore

Smoothies are one of those universal fun foods that can serve as a meal, snack or supplement. There seems to be no end in combinations. The real trick to making a great smoothie is to determine ahead of time what you want your main flavors to be and what you want to hide for extra nutrition.

Most commonly, smoothies are fruit based. Some choose to also use a dairy base such as yogurt or ice cream while others prefer a dairy free drink. You can serve them as frozen concoctions or as a thick juice.

Here are some starter drinks for you:

1. Berry, Berry Blend

Mix frozen or fresh Blueberries, Strawberries, Bananas and Oranges/Orange Juice with Ice. Blend in a blender, adding more ice or orange juice until you reach your desired consistency. Add honey as needed to reach desired sweetness.

2. Banana-Strawberry-Peach Smoothie by Williams-Sonoma

Borrowed from Williams-Sonoma


  • 1 1/2 very ripe bananas, peeled and frozen
  • 4 to 6 strawberries, hulled and frozen, plus 2 strawberries for garnish
  • 1/2 peach, pitted, plus 2 thin slices for garnish
  • 3/4 cup peach nectar


Select 2 tumblers. In a blender, combine the bananas, the 4 to 6 strawberries, the peach and peach nectar, and process until thick and creamy. Divide between the glasses. Garnish each glass with a peach slice and a strawberry and serve immediately.
Addional alterations to recipe are provided on the site.
(Ingredients and Directions were copied directly from Williams-Sonoma.)

Cranberry Apple Butter

The Flying Biscuit in Atlanta is one of my favorite breakfast places. So when The Flying Biscuit opened in Gainesville a few years ago, I was really excited. I’ve always thought one of the best items on the menu are the biscuit (of course) which are served with this fantastic and fragrant Cranberry Apple Butter.

Cranberry Apple Butter


2 C. Dark Brown Sugar

1 Cinnamon Stick

1-1/4 tsp Ground Cinnamon

1 tsp Ground Nutmeg

1 tsp Ground Cloves

1 C. Orange Juice

2-3 C. Fresh Cranberries

10 Granny Smith Apples – peeled, cored and chopped


Add sugar, spices and orange juice to a large pan and bring to a simmer. Add cranberries and simmer until the cranberries begin to pop. Add apples and cook on low until apples begin to fall apart. Once all apples are cooked, remove from heat and puree with a stick blender or in a food processor until very smooth. This butter can be eaten warm, or cool completely and store in the refridgerator for up to 3 weeks.




This recipe is a rough take on an “unofficial” Flying Biscuit recipe I found online. I’ve made a few adjustments to make it a little more tart and a little less sweet. If you add 3 cups of cranberries and don’t reduce the sugar, you’ll get a tart and sweet butter. Personally I think next time I’ll tadding 2 cups of cranberries and reducing the sugar would make a great adjustment.


Homemade Apple Cider Caramel

You’ll Need:
4 cups Apple Cider (make your own using our recipe or buy it from our co-op)
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
0.5 cup Brown Sugar (packed)
4 TBSP Butter

1. Reduce cider and vanilla in skillet on medium to high heat until it is approximately 2 cups in volume. (This may take 60 to 90 minutes.) Stir frequently.

2. Add brown sugar and butter and continue to cook and stir. Cook until mixture begins to thicken. It should look like this:

3. Allow to cook for another 5-20 minutes (depending how thick you want the final caramel).
4. Remove from heat and allow to thicken. Serve with fresh fruit or pour over brownies or other dessert.
5. Store in refrigerator and reheat as needed for future use.

Want additional ideas of how to use this recipe? Consider dipping chilled apples on a stick into the sauce. Then roll the apples in toppings of your choice (nuts, sprinkles, chocolate chips, dried fruit, pretzel pieces, etc.). Continue to chill apples until you are ready to enjoy them.


Recipe inspiration courtesy of Epicurious.

Kids Corner – Fun Pumpkin Cereal Treats

I recently discovered a creative and fun Kellogg’s Rice Krispie Treat recipe (Surprise Pumpkin Treats) in one of my many recipe/family magazines. (I don’t know which one because it has been recycled already. LOL.) We haven’t made cereal treats in years, so I thought the kids would enjoy the project, and sharing them with friends.

You’ll Need:
3 TBSP Butter
4 cups Mini Marshmallows (or equivalent)
3 drops Red Food Coloring
15 drops Yellow Food Coloring
6 cups Puffed Rice Cereal
12-14 small Chocolate Candies of Choice
6-7 Pretzel Twist Sticks, broken in half

1. Melt butter in large pot.
2. Add marshmallows and stir continuously until melted. Remove from heat.
3. Add red and yellow food coloring and stir.
4. Add cereal and mix well.

5. Prepare candies and pretzels.

6. Place handful of marshmallow/cereal mix in greased hand along with one chocolate candy. Form a ball, enclosing the candy.

7. Place cereal ball on non-stick surface and push down gently until ball is slightly flattened on the bottom.
8. Add pretzel stick by gently pushing it into the ball.
9. Set aside to cool and harden before serving.

Note: The original recipe calls for green gum drops (to form the stem) and green frosting (to draw leaves/vines). We substituted the gum drops and frosting for half a pretzel twist stick.


Kids Corner – Vegan Chocolate Cake

My kids have recently expressed an interest in learning how to cook, desiring to help prepare our daily meals. While this is a very sweet gesture on their part, it does take a little bit of extra planning on my part (and some extra time). As we venture through their experiences, I may post some of their recipes in our Kids Corner. If your child(ren) are eager in the kitchen and you’d like us to feature them and their recipe(s), please submit your picture(s) and recipe notes to Angela. 🙂

First up, Mollie Katzen’s Made-in-the-Pan Chocolate Cake featured in Honest Pretzels.

You’ll Need:
1.25 cups Unbleached White Flour
0.33 cup Unsweetened Cocoa
1 cup Sugar
0.5 TSP Salt
0.75 TSP Baking Soda
1 cup Water
0.33 cup Canola Oil
1 TSP Vanilla Extract
1 TSP Cider/White Vinegar

1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
2. Mix the flour, cocoa, sugar, salt, and baking soda in pan.
3. Add water, oil, vanilla, and vinegar to dry ingredients and mix well.
4. Flatten the batter to make sure it is evenly distributed in the pan and clean the edges of the pan above the batter.
5. Bake for 30 minutes or until done.
6. Allow to cool before cutting.


Chocolate Chip Sweet Potato Bread

Fall always bring about several pumpkin recipes. If you are like me, your house is filled with the aroma of pumpkin spice and several baked goods in the oven. You may even have a cup of warm cider or hot cocoa on the counter keeping you company. 😉

There are several pumkin bread recipes floating around blogs and the internet right now. What intrigued me most about this recipe, was the adaptability to use sweet potatoes instead of pumpkin… AND since we just received some locally grown BEAUTIFUL PURPLE sweet potatoes, I thought it would be a lot of fun to make a purple chocolate chip bread. 🙂

You’ll Need:
1 cup Oil of Choice
2.66 cups Sugar
4 large eggs or 6 Egg Whites
12 oz Mashed Sweet Potato
0.66 cup water
1.33 cups Whole Wheat Flour
2 cups All Purpose or Bread Flour
0.5 TSP Baking Powder
2 TSP Baking Soda
1.5 TSP Salt
1 TBSP Pumpkin Spice
2 TSP Cinnamon
1 TSP Vanilla Extract
24 oz. Chocolate Chips

1. Grease two 9×5″ loaf pans and preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Blend together oil, sugar, eggs, potatoes and water in mixer until thoroughly blended.
3. Mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl.
4. Add flour mixture to wet ingredients and mix well.
5. Add vanilla and chocolate chip to dough mixture, and continue to mix.
6. Pour half of mix into each pan.
6. Bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes, or until done.
7. Cool completely on wire rack before serving.


**Recipe idea adapted from Passionate Penny Pincher.