Sarah’s Lemon White Chocolate Bars

My college friend Sarah recently started a blog. She’s one of the most crafty women I know & she’s also a great baker. I was so happy to discover her lemon white chocolate cookie recipe earlier this week.

I’ve been craving all things lemon since popping these babies out. I think it’s due to the fact that coming within 10 feet of lemon at the end of the pregnancy gave me heartburn. I’ve nommed like crazy on lemon squares from my mom’s friend & drank lemonade by the gallon.

I ventured out with Lucy in tow Wednesday, just happened to pass the cake mix aisle & somehow lemon cake mix & eggs ended up in my cart. And then the world smiled upon me & both babies napped *at the same time* Wednesday evening, so that I was able to make these delicious bars. Like Sarah says, seriously the BEST & EASIEST ever!

1 box lemon cake mix
1/2 c vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 c white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Mix together cake mix, oil & eggs. I mixed by hand for noise sake but you could use a mixer too.

Blend in the chips.

Smush & flatten the batter into a 8×8 pan. I used non-stick brownie pan but still sprayed in with Pam.

Sarah recommends baking for 18-19 minutes. My oven is slow & things got a little crazy {shocker right?}, so these bars baked for more like 20+ minutes. They are still delicious & I may or may not have enjoyed almost half a pan in the last day.

My favorite way to enjoy lemon treats is with fruit, especially raspberries. It makes them healthy, right {please say yes & go make these & enjoy}!

Jean’s Fresh Apple Cake

My aunt’s MIL, Jean Owens, is a professional caterer. Somehow, I don’t have a copy of her cookbook, At Your Request, but I borrowed my Nana’s to share this recipe. I’ve loved this cake when my mom’s made it before, & we decided it would be perfect for our family for this weekend as we’re gathering to celebrate another shower for my brother. I had a bunch of fresh NC apples I’d picked up from my work’s farmer’s market, so I volunteered to bake.

1 1/4 c vegetable oil
2 c sugar
3 eggs
3 c peeled & chopped apples
1 tsp vanilla
3 c all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 c light raisins {omitted & subbed in 3/4 c craisins}
1 c chopped pecans or walnuts

1/2 c butter
1 c light brown sugar
1/4 c evaporated milk
1/2 tsp vanilla

In large mixing bowl, combine oil, sugar, eggs, apples & vanilla. Beat well by hand {do not use electric mixer}. In separate bowl, stir together flour, salt & baking soda.  Add the flour mixture to the apple mixer & stir together. Fold in raisins & nuts.

Pour into greased & floured pan. Bake at 325 for 25 minutes for layer pan or 1 hour for bundt pan {I used bundt}. Verify doneness with the clear fork test.

To make glaze:
{I baked the cake Thurs night & we made glaze Friday night in Richmond because I didn’t have the evap milk. Thanks mom!} Combine butter, sugar & evaporated milk in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil. Cook 3 mins to thicken. Add vanilla, cool & spread on cake.

Jean likes Granny Smith apples for this cake. I used local NC Fugi & it still turned out delicious.

Honey Bun Cake

Some people clean during a hurricane, some nap, some watch news incessantly, & some brave the wind/rain to shop {Brandy!}. I cook. First thing Saturday morning I made Jason these blueberry muffins. So glad I remembered I had this recipe as they were easy & pretty yummy.

How is this recipe below not already a blog post?! This cake is the first one I ever made for my coworkers back in 2004. It’s made appearances at brunches, early morning football tailgates, & my holiday dessert spread ever since Mom passed on the recipe years ago. Part coffee cake, part yellow cake, all sweet deliciousness.

When we decided to do the Raleigh version of the girls night, I knew exactly what I’d bring. Spinach & artichoke squares for Saturday night & this Honey Bun cake for late night dessert & brunch.

This is yet another recipe where you doctor your favorite boxed yellow cake {my favorite’s whatever is on sale}.

Batter Ingredients:
1 box yellow cake mix
1/2 c sugar
3/4 c vegetable oil
4 eggs
1 c sour cream

Mix the above together & placed 1/2 of the batter in a greased 9×13 pan.

In separate smaller bowl, mix 1 c brown sugar & 2 teaspoons cinnamon.

Place half of this brown sugar mixture on top of the batter & swirl.

Layer the second half of the batter on top then sprinkle & swirl the rest of the brown sugar/cinnamon.

Bake on 300 for an hour. Enjoy {as you can see from the bottom right photo, we did}!

Strawberry Daiquiri Cake

My friend Brooke from work gave me this recipe a while ago because she thought it sounded like something I’d love. I remembered this receipe last night and thought I’d post it so we could make it down at the beach using fresh strawberries from Holden Farms. I can’t wait!
Strawberry Daiquiri Cake (Brooke’s friend Natasha)
1 box cake mix (vanilla, yellow, strawberry) or enough gluten free cake mix to make a 2 layer or sheet cake
1 small box instant vanilla pudding
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk (fat free if desired)
1 16 oz. container of Cool Whip (Lite if desired)
1 can frozen strawberry daiquiri mix, thawed
Fresh strawberries, sliced with sugar sprinkled on them (or can use 1 bag frozen strawberries, thawed & sliced with sugar). Leave some juice on them.
Red food coloring (optional)
Mix cake as directed on package, adding small box of instant pudding. Bake cake as directed on package in 9×13 greased baking pan. Let cool 10 minutes then turn cake out onto wire rack or wax paper and allow to completely cool.
To make frosting: Stir sweetened condensed milk & daiquiri mix together. Then fold in cool whip. A drop of red food coloring may be added if desired for color (but not too much or will make frosting too runny.) If this is done before cake is ready to put together, put this mixture back in refrigerator.
Split cake into 2 thin layers using dental floss. Put the bottom half back into pan. Use fork to punch holes in cake.
Spread enough strawberries (& juice) to cover layer of cake.
Spread layer of frosting on top of strawberries.
Put top half of cake over frosting. Use fork to punch holes in cake.
Add more strawberries (if desired) then frosting on top half of cake. Can put strawberries under frosting and/or on top of frosting for decoration.
Refrigerate. (Frosting will set up a little more once refrigerated.)

Blueberry Bundt Cake

I was looking to make something with my buy 1 get 1 free blueberries last week and stumpled upon this recipe online. I’ve made it 3 times now for us and for a work baby shower. It’s been a hit so I thought I’d share it with the blogging world too! Enjoy!
Blueberry Bundt Cake
1 box yellow cake mix
1/3 c oil
3 eggs
1 (8 oz) cream cheese (I used 1/3 less fat)
1 (3 ½ oz) box of instant vanilla pudding
1 can blueberries, drained (save juice)
2 c confectioners’ sugar
Mix cake mix, oil, eggs, cream cheese and vanilla pudding on medium speed (mixture will be very thick).
Fold in blueberries; pour in Bundt cake pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until done. (Its taken more like 45-50 min for me)
Icing: Mix blueberry juice and 2 cups confectioners sugar and pour over cake while hot.