Feb 142018

In honor of Valentine’s Day I’m making a special dessert that has my two favorite things….chocolate and peanut butter!  This is crazy good and easy to make.  As you can see from the photo, I opted for the easy way and bought a pre-made chocolate graham cracker crust!  For the topping, use melted peanut butter chips, chocolate chips, peanut butter cups or ganache…your choice!

For the crust

14 whole chocolate graham crackers
tablespoon light brown sugar
tablespoons (3.5 ounces) unsalted butter, melted

For the filling

ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
3/4 cup powdered sugar plus 2 tablespoons, divided
cup creamy peanut butter
cup heavy whipping cream
teaspoon vanilla extract


Melted chocolate
Peanut buter cups
Peanut butter chips


Chocolate Ganache

3/4 cups chocolate chips
1/4 cup heavy cream

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

For the crust:

In the bowl of a food processor process the crackers until finely ground. Add the sugar and butter until well mixed. Use the bottom of spoon to press the crust mixture into the bottom and sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Bake until lightly browned, about 12 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack.

For the filling:

In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese, 3/4 cup powdered sugar, and the peanut butter until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer with the whisk attachment to whip the heavy cream until thick and light. Add in the remaining 2 tablespoons powdered sugar and the vanilla extract and continue to whip until stiff peaks form.

Gently fold the whipped cream into the peanut butter mixture. Pour into the prepared pie shell and freeze for 3 hours. Drizzle with melted peanut butter and melted chocolate OR with the ganache.

For the Ganache:

Heat the heavy cream in the microwave for about 1 minute until hot. Pour hot cream over the chocolate chips. Allow to sit for about 2-3 minutes. Whisk together till smooth and creamy. Allow mixture to set for about 5 minutes. Pour chocolate ganache over the peanut butter layer.

Arrange chopped peanut butter cups on top if you’d like. Cover the pie and return to the fridge or freezer for at least 2 hours.


Feb 232017

This is a doctored up cake mix recipe and it’s one of my favorites!   Lately, I’ve been skipping the German chocolate if I don’t have it on hand and it turns out just as good.  I’ve added a few tablespoons of flour to the cake mix due to the new smaller sizes (15.25oz) of most cake mixes on the market.

yellow cake mix, plus 3 T flour
8 oz chocolate chips
4 oz German chocolate, grated
1 pkg. (3.9 oz) vanilla instant pudding
8 oz sour cream
4 eggs
1/2 cup oil
3/4 cup water

Grease and flour bundt pan or use a 9×13 pan. Mix together  all ingredients except chocolate.  Fold in chocolate.  Bake  at 350 degrees for 50 – 60 minutes.  Keep checking using the tooth pick test to make sure you don’t overcook. Let cool completely.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar or drizzle with chocolate ganache.


Chocolate Ganache

2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup cream or half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

On stovetop:
In a saucepan, add the chocolate and cream and place it on a low heat. Stir until the chocolate has melted. Remove from the heat and stir in the extract. Allow to cool for at least 5 minutes to thicken.  Give it a stir and drizzle it over the cake.

In microwave:
Place chocolate in a medium microwave-safe bowl and heat on high power for 1 minute to soften chocolate; set aside. In a small microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup, heat the cream or half-and-half on high power just until it begins to bubble and show signs of boiling, about 1 minute. Pour hot cream over chocolate and let it stand about 1 minute. Whisk vigorously until chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth and velvety. Add vanilla and whisk to combine. Set bowl aside for about 5 minutes, allowing ganache to cool and thicken a bit. Drizzle over the cake.