Therapy Cookies (AKA Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Sea Salt Bites)

DSC_0046

 

DSC_0048

Sometimes, the world can be really lousy.  We all have those days where getting out of bed is a struggle, or when everything that could go wrong does go wrong. Or days when you get a parking ticket, it conveniently rains every time you step outside, and your accidentally lock your self in your bedroom- all hypothetical of course.

On days like that, some people exercise. Rumor has it that sports are a good way to relieve stress. Others drink.  Rumor has it that also has stress relieving potential- that and increased rates of stupidity, the giggles, and nausea.

Others of us pull every ingredient with baking potential out of the kitchen cupboards, haphazardly mix them up in a bowl, add extra chocolate, and make these therapy cookies.

Can you guess which scenario I am?

I don’t always bake when I’m low, but when I am down, I tend to forget recipes for the trial and error game; always resulting in an enormous batch of baked goods, an excess of chocolate chips, and happy roommates.

These cookies are the perfect example of the above scenario.

I swore to myself that I wasn’t going to post this recipe.  The cookies themselves taste delicious, but because I came up with the recipe all by myself in the late hours of the night, they don’t fit the stereotypical texture or appearance of a ‘normal’ cookie, if there is such a thing.

However as the week went along (and by week I mean days), and I continued to munch on these therapy cookies, I realized that I actually liked these little guys too much not to post! The combination of chocolate, peanut butter, and sea salt satisfies every normal person’s craving of sweet and/or salty, so I had no good excuse to hold back.

Therefore, I present to you my favorite therapy cookies, for those no good, very bad, horrible days. Hang in there. The sun will come out, of this I must believe.

DSC_0051

DSC_0054

Ingredients:

  • 2 ¼ cup oats
  • 2 Tablespoon ground flax seed
  • ¾ cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • ½ cup white flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup almond milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 Tablespoon agave
  • 2/3 cup melted peanut butter*
  • ½ cup melted chocolate chips* + ½ cup un-melted chocolate chips for mixing
  • Sea salt for topping*

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F and line a 13 x 9 inch cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the first seven ingredients in a large bowl, whisking together until thoroughly combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, coconut oil, and agave.
  4. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring as needed.
  5. Add the melted peanut butter and ½ cup melted chocolate chips to the mixture, stirring until completely mixed in.  Once mixed, fold in the room temperature chocolate chips.
  6. Using a spoon, drop small balls of cookie batter onto the lined baking sheet, and press each ball into a flatter circle using the back of the spoon.
  7. Sprinkle each cookie with sea salt and bake for 7 minutes. (The cookies will be soft, but are much better slightly gooey than too firm! They will hold up and continue to firm as they cool, however if you hate soft cookies [who are you?!], allow them to cook for a few minutes longer. I do not strongly advise this however.)

 DSC_0047

Notes and Tips!:

  • To melt the peanut butter and chocolate chips, I simply microwaved them in microwave safe bowls for 20-second intervals, stirring in between each 20 seconds, until melted to satisfaction.  You may also melt the chips and peanut butter in a saucepot on the stove- whatever you prefer!
  • Do not replace the sea salt with normal table salt, it will not have the same affect. True sea salt has a stronger taste and comes in larger size granules, which positively affects both the image of the cookie as well as the taste!
  • Source: A Rented Kitchen
  • If you like this recipe, check out these other yummy treats by ‘a rented kitchen! (Click the links below for the recipes!)

 

 

 

Hershey Kiss Pretzel Bites

IMG_4000

Soooooo Valentine’s day is coming up soon. Valentine’s day has never been a super significant holiday in my book, but now that I have a food blog, I find myself wanting to bake and make a zillion new chocolate desserts and heart-shaped treats. Go figure.

I don’t know if this recipe really qualifies as baking, considering it’s only two ingredients and takes only 10 minutes to make. These treats are delicious though, and will make for a perfect Valentine’s day gift!

Whether you use these delicious pretzel bites to fill treat bags to give to all your friends (who will love you forever), or to fill a sweet Valentine’s day dessert box for give to your boo, these little snacks is won’t let you down!

Perfect for the college budget, easy on the schedule, and not to mention cute! What’s not to love? 🙂

I hope this makes your Valentine’s day a little more stress-free, and a lot more lovely.

Happy baking!

Love, Sarah

IMG_4009

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 bags of unwrapped Hershey kisses/ hugs
  • 1 bag of square pretzels

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F˚ and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  2. Arrange several rows of pretzels on the baking sheet so that there is enough room in between each pretzel to easily pick up one square without touching the others.
  3. Place a Hershey kiss (or hug) on top of each pretzel square, directly centered, and bake for 1-2 minutes.*
  4. Remove the tray and top each Hershey kiss with another pretzel, pressing the partially melted kiss down until it evenly covers the entire square.
  5. Refrigerate the pretzel bites for 10 minutes and then devour! (or share with your valentine….)

 IMG_4014

Notes/ Tips!:

  • Hershey hugs melt a little differently and quicker than solid milk or dark chocolate. Pay attention and bake them accordingly!
  • Pay attention to the Hershey kisses while they are in the oven. They melt very quickly and will become impossible to deal with if completely melted.
  • To test and see if your chocolate pretzels are done baking, open the door to your oven, and see if you can easily flatten out a Hershey kiss under the pressure of a fresh pretzel square. If the kisses are done baking they will easily flatten out with pressure. If they need more time you may be able to collapse the peak of the kiss, but not much more.
  • Source: A Rented Kitchen
  • Like this recipe? Check out these other yummy treats! Chocolate Mint Puddle Cookies, Caramel Delight Chocolate Covered Pretzels, and my favorite Fresh Fruit Dessert Tart!  

Haystack Cookies

DSC_0044

The school semester has started up yesterday. That means holiday vacation is officially over, kids are back in school, and parents are back at work. Welcome to the grind.

In the midst of a busy schedule it is hard to find time and make time to cook. I am very aware of this, and struggle to find that balance regularly.  Fortunately, however, with this easy recipe, you only need 15 minutes! Stir the three ingredients together, drop the sweet and salty clusters onto a baking sheet, refrigerate for 10 minutes, and you have yourself a perfect combination of salty meets sweet that everyone is going to love.

File this recipe away for days when you need to bring something to a potluck, a gathering with friends, or are playing hostess for an event.  With this time saver, you’ll be so grateful you did.

Now all you need to decide is what kind of sweet chips you are going to use, and what you are going to do with all that time you saved.

DSC_0048

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butterscotch chips*
  • 2 cups chow Mein noodles
  • ½ cup salted peanuts or cashews

Directions:

  1. Melt the chips in a double boiler (or in the microwave, starting with 30 seconds, and then stirring every 15 seconds until melted).
  2. Combine the melted chips with the dry noodles and peanuts, stirring until thoroughly coated.
  3. Drop the mixture by a spoon onto wax paper covered baking sheet.
  4. Refrigerate for 10 minutes, or until the chocolate has set.
  5. Enjoy!

DSC_0050

Notes and Tips!:

  • You may use chocolate, butterscotch, white chocolate, peanut butter, caramel chips, or a combination of these! I suggest using ½ cup chocolate chips mixed in with ½ cup butterscotch chips for the perfect balance!
  • A fun variation on this recipe is to drop the ball of noodles onto the baking sheet, and then using your thumb, press down the center so that the haystack forms more of a birds nest shape. You may have to use your other fingers or a spoon to help it achieve the ideal shape. Then fill the nest with a few chocolate eggs from Nestle for an excellent spring/ Easter treat!
  • Like this recipe? Check out some of my other favorite cookie recipes!: Chocolate Mint Puddle Cookies, Crispy Butterfinger Cookies, and easy and delicious No-Bake Energy Bites!