Crazy for Crust Baking... With a Slice of Life 2017-02-23T11:00:08Z http://www.crazyforcrust.com/feed/atom/ Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[Easy Chicken Parmesan]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21557 2017-02-22T15:20:45Z 2017-02-23T11:00:08Z Easy Open Nature® Chicken Parmesan – this quick dinner recipe is totally foolproof. The chicken comes out moist every time! It’s the BEST easy chicken parmesan recipe we’ve ever had and it’s my husband’s favorite. It’s mid-February and we are in the middle of our super busy marathon: family visits and birthdays and trips, oh […]

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Easy Open Nature® Chicken Parmesan – this quick dinner recipe is totally foolproof. The chicken comes out moist every time! It’s the BEST easy chicken parmesan recipe we’ve ever had and it’s my husband’s favorite.

Easy Chicken Parmesan - this quick dinner recipe is totally foolproof. The chicken comes out moist every time! It's the BEST chicken parmesan recipe we've ever had.

It’s mid-February and we are in the middle of our super busy marathon: family visits and birthdays and trips, oh my! Mel and I haven’t had a chance to sneak away for a date night in weeks and there isn’t a break anytime soon. So, this past Monday night I planned a date-night-in dinner for us. Jordan had an extra long dance class and someone else was driving carpool, so we were alone in the house for a couple of hours. We turned off the TV and ate at the dining room table like adults. I even set the table!

In normal, less-hectic times we try to do dinner in at least once a month. On these nights I like to make a special dinner that I know Mel loves, but I want it to be an easy recipe. After all, I don’t want to spend hours cooking when we only have a few hours alone, and I don’t want to spend the entire night doing dishes either. That’s why this Easy Chicken Parmesan is one of the best for date night, or even for a quick dinner on a busy weeknight.

I’ve been making this baked chicken recipe for a long time and we love it because it’s totally foolproof. It’s not fried so it has less calories and it’s never dry. Dry chicken is the worst, which is why I like this recipe so much.

Easy Chicken Parmesan - this quick dinner recipe is totally foolproof. The chicken comes out moist every time! It's the BEST chicken parmesan recipe we've ever had.

What makes this recipe foolproof? A few things, actually. I like to make sure my chicken breasts are uniform in size. A lot of times a package of boneless skinless chicken breasts will have varying sizes in the package, and even the breast itself can be very thick at one end and thin at the other. To combat this problem I like to slice each breast in half lengthwise so I get equal sized pieces.

Then, the chicken is breaded, as it is in traditional chicken parmesan. The breading sticks fine without egg, which reduces a step. The chicken is baked at a high temperature, sealing in moisture and baking it quickly.

At the end of baking, right when regular chicken recipes would be getting dry, you add pasta sauce and cheese to the hot pan. The covering of sauce helps the chicken finish cooking yet keeps it nice and juicy.

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[Copycat Mint Shake {dairy-free, low-sugar}]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21582 2017-02-22T17:27:00Z 2017-02-21T11:00:56Z Copycat Mint Shake – this popular copycat shake recipe is made dairy-free and lower sugar! It’s an EASY milkshake recipe that is perfect for mint lovers. PIN IT NOW to save for later! It would seem that I’m on a mint kick, doesn’t it? I mean, Mint Chip Oreos the other day and now this […]

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Copycat Mint Shake – this popular copycat shake recipe is made dairy-free and lower sugar! It’s an EASY milkshake recipe that is perfect for mint lovers.

PIN IT NOW to save for later!

Copycat Mint Shake - this popular copycat shake recipe is made dairy-free and lower sugar! It's an EASY milkshake recipe that is perfect for mint lovers.

It would seem that I’m on a mint kick, doesn’t it? I mean, Mint Chip Oreos the other day and now this mint shake…I think I like this trend. I can’t help myself, really. As soon as one holiday is over I’m ready for the next one. I’m like Target that way: it’s barely Christmas Eve and all the Valentine’s Day stuff is out. Now the the big V DAY is over, I’m onto the next one: St. Patrick’s Day!

Do you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? To be honest, I like the mint and rainbow food more than I like the actual day. When I was in Wisconsin a few weeks ago, they talked about how the Irish holiday is a huge one there. Maybe it’s because I’m in California that it’s not such a huge deal? If I remember what day it is I’ll wear green and make mashed potatoes for dinner…and maybe this copycat mint shake for dessert.

You know what shake this is a copycat of, right? That famous one that is sold by the fast-food chain? If I’m being honest, I’ve never actually had one of those shakes. I always want to…and then I realize how much sugar, fat, and calories are in them. I set out to try and make a skinny mint shake version that tastes just as good but is not as bad for your diet.

Want to know one of the secrets of this shake? There’s NO ice cream in it at all. None, not a bit. The sweet and thick flavor comes from pudding mix! And before you yell at me about all the sugar in pudding mix, I used sugar-free. You can use what you like, but I didn’t miss that sugar one little bit.

In addition to the pudding mix and ice, you need some sort of liquid to blend it all together. I decided to go one step further and not only make this a lower calorie shake version but also a dairy-free one too. There’s no dairy in this shake at all!

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[Homemade Mint Chip Oreos]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21576 2017-02-15T19:33:13Z 2017-02-19T11:00:50Z Homemade Mint Chip Oreos – this EASY homemade Oreo recipe is soft batch and filled with mint chip filling! Mint lovers will LOVE this cookie recipe. Today, February 19, is National Chocolate Mint Day (hence these Mint Chip Oreos), but it’s also another special day: it’s Jordan’s 12th birthday! How is my baby (my only […]

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Homemade Mint Chip Oreos – this EASY homemade Oreo recipe is soft batch and filled with mint chip filling! Mint lovers will LOVE this cookie recipe.

Homemade Mint Chip Oreos - this EASY homemade Oreo recipe is soft batch and filled with mint chip filling! Mint lovers will LOVE this cookie recipe.

Today, February 19, is National Chocolate Mint Day (hence these Mint Chip Oreos), but it’s also another special day: it’s Jordan’s 12th birthday! How is my baby (my only baby) turning 12? Her being a baby seems like so long ago, yet it also feels like it was yesterday. She’s no longer a baby or a toddler, a little kid or a big kid: she’s almost a teenager.

I think, if I had to pick a favorite age, it would be from 8 until now. She’s more independent, able to get things herself or figure things out on her own. We can leave her alone if needed, she travels so much easier, and she’s really a fun person to be around. Also, she still loves us, so so far 12 is an okay age. If I’m being honest, I think I’m more scared about the next 12 years than I was about the first 12. Middle school, hormones, boys, friends, driving…oh my.

There are times like this when I really wish I was Evie from Out Of This World (remember that show?!) and I could simply touch my index fingers together to freeze time. I’m sure there are going to be times soon where I wish I could fast-forward too, ha!

I started making mint chip recipes on February 19 several years ago. One of Jordan’s favorite flavor combinations are chocolate and mint and when we realized her birthday was chocolate mint day, it seemed like it was meant to be. For years she had mint chip cakes, cookies, brownies, and cupcakes on her birthday. This year she decided on a Pizookie for her party and a Pecan Pie for her birthday dinner. And no, it’s not MY pecan pie she requested, no that would be too easy. She requested a pecan pie from the dad of a friend of hers. HIS pecan pie is the BEST ONE. (I kind of agree…and I’ll need to share it here sometime.)

Homemade Mint Chip Oreos - this EASY homemade Oreo recipe is soft batch and filled with mint chip filling! Mint lovers will LOVE this cookie recipe.

Because of nostalgia, I will still always post mint chip recipes in honor of her birthday. I cannot see green mint without thinking of her!

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted any homemade Oreo recipes. Did you know I have several? Nutella, Golden Oreos, Coconut, Lemon…the list is exhausting. I really like to recreate flavors at home, but I also love to create my own flavors, like Cannibal Oreos (get it? lol). For this recipe, I recreated Mint Oreos…with a little twist: I made them Mint CHIP Oreos. The filling isn’t just a smooth minty filling, but it’s also full of chocolate chips.

More chocolate is always better, don’t you think?

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[15 Small Batch Dessert Recipes that satisfy your sweet tooth in a BIG way]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21595 2017-02-16T22:27:48Z 2017-02-17T11:00:39Z 15 Small Batch Dessert Recipes to satisfy your sweet tooth in a BIG WAY. Cookies, cake, brownies, sangria, monkey bread…everything in single-serve size! As you all know I have a MAJOR sweet tooth. If left to my own devices, I’d eat an entire tray of brownies or cookies without batting an eyelash. But wait – […]

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15 Small Batch Dessert Recipes to satisfy your sweet tooth in a BIG WAY. Cookies, cake, brownies, sangria, monkey bread…everything in single-serve size!

Small Batch Dessert Recipes to satisfy your sweet tooth in a BIG WAY. Cookies, cake, brownies, sangria, monkey bread...everything in single-serve size!

As you all know I have a MAJOR sweet tooth. If left to my own devices, I’d eat an entire tray of brownies or cookies without batting an eyelash. But wait – NOW I CAN – when it’s a SMALL BATCH brownie, that is. Make a smaller portion size of your favorite cookies, cakes, and breakfast treats so that if you slip up and eat it all…that’s okay! Portion control can be a very good thing.

From skillet cookies and brownies to mug cookies, cupcakes, and coffee cake and even cinnamon rolls and sangria – this list of 15 small batch dessert recipes has something for EVERYONE! Which will you make first??

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[Blueberry Cornbread]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21565 2017-02-16T03:13:22Z 2017-02-16T11:00:21Z EASY Blueberry Cornbread – this cornbread recipe starts with a doctored mix. The blueberries and some added sugar make this the PERFECT breakfast or dessert recipe.   This week has been totally cray, as my daughter likes to say. Between re-entry from a weeklong trip to Wisconsin (to see some friends and attend a video […]

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EASY Blueberry Cornbread – this cornbread recipe starts with a doctored mix. The blueberries and some added sugar make this the PERFECT breakfast or dessert recipe.

EASY Blueberry Cornbread - this cornbread recipe starts with a doctored mix. The blueberries and some added sugar make this the PERFECT breakfast or dessert recipe.

 

This week has been totally cray, as my daughter likes to say. Between re-entry from a weeklong trip to Wisconsin (to see some friends and attend a video workshop) and Jordan’s birthday this weekend, my calendar has so many things on it it’s hard to read. On weeks like these it’s really hard to get anything done besides work so when dinnertime rolls around I start staring blankly into my refrigerator, thinking about the chicken that’s still frozen. Please tell me I’m not alone in that??

One of my favorite last minute dinners is actually breakfast. Brinner, as we call it, appears a lot on busy weeknights when there’s too much going on. It only takes a few minutes to scramble some eggs and brown up some bacon. Add a side of fruit or throw some leftover veggies in your scramble and you have a well-balanced meal…unless you’re me and Jordan. We also require something sweet with our breakfast-for-dinner. Sometimes I’ll make pancakes or muffins, but when I’m feeling even more in a pinch, I’ll make cornbread. It has just a few ingredients and bakes up in a pan so there’s no scooping or flipping.

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[Frosting Shots]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21531 2017-02-09T19:50:41Z 2017-02-14T11:00:37Z Frosting Shots – this easy cocktail recipe has just two ingredients, vodka and frosting! They’re the perfect dessert drink recipe especially for a birthday. A few weeks ago a good friend of mine turned 40 and we threw her a party with our closest friends. She’s a mom of 3 boys and rarely gets to […]

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Frosting Shots – this easy cocktail recipe has just two ingredients, vodka and frosting! They’re the perfect dessert drink recipe especially for a birthday.

Frosting Shots - this EASY 2 ingredient cocktail recipe is simply frosting and vodka! EVERYONE loves them.

A few weeks ago a good friend of mine turned 40 and we threw her a party with our closest friends. She’s a mom of 3 boys and rarely gets to feel girly (it’s all baseball and basketball and rough and tumble over at her house) so we pampered her with an extra girly evening full of flowers and food and fun.

I was in charge of desserts for the party (obviously, when am I not?) and I made an assortment of thinks like red velvet cake, lemon tarts, and drunk cherries. (PSA, if you make those cherries I urge you to re-think soaking them for a full week before serving or you will go from 0 to drunk in no time at all!) I’d originally planned to make lots of flowery decorations for her cake using canned frosting (the cake was frosted with the real stuff) but then I got lazy and did my default rosette pattern instead. I found myself with a can of frosting and as I was setting up the bar I thought…why not mix FROSTING with VODKA?

Sometimes I’m a genius.

These shots were so easy and so good – everyone loved them. The birthday girl drank more than a few!

Frosting Shots - this EASY 2 ingredient cocktail recipe is simply frosting and vodka! EVERYONE loves them.

I did a few trial ones as singles to taste but I found that it was better (and almost easier) to make a few shots at once instead of one at a time.

The first time I made them, I just tried to shake frosting with the vodka, which left clumps. Then, when I was making them for the dessert table, I wanted to have several prepared at once. I decided to melt the frosting a little bit before adding the vodka and it worked wonderfully.

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[Birthday Cake Roll]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21526 2017-02-13T14:14:45Z 2017-02-12T11:00:49Z Birthday Cake Roll – this easy yellow cake roll recipe is filled with sprinkles and the BEST EVER chocolate frosting recipe! Everyone loved the cake but they RAVED about this frosting. PIN IT NOW to save for later! I’ve gone 2 whole months without posting a cake roll recipe, so I felt it was time […]

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Birthday Cake Roll – this easy yellow cake roll recipe is filled with sprinkles and the BEST EVER chocolate frosting recipe! Everyone loved the cake but they RAVED about this frosting.

PIN IT NOW to save for later!

Birthday Cake Roll - this easy cake roll recipe is full of sprinkles and the BEST EVER chocolate frosting. EVERYONE loved the frosting so much!

I’ve gone 2 whole months without posting a cake roll recipe, so I felt it was time for another one, ha! This time it’s all about the BIRTHDAY CAKE! With sprinkles, of course.

Last week my mother-in-law turned 80. The entire family flew in from San Diego to surprise her. We had Jordan and the great-grandkids go to her front door to surprise her. I gave Jordan my phone to video tape the look on her face…and she forgot to record. But that’s okay – she was super surprised and even got teary. That’s what big birthdays are all about, right? Well, that and cake!

Since she’s the one who taught me how to make cake rolls, I thought it was fitting to make one for her as her birthday cake. I love a good old fashioned birthday cake: yellow cake with chocolate frosting. I decided to turn that cake into a cake roll and add sprinkles, because sprinkles make me happy.

The yellow cake base is the one from my Strawberry Shortcake Cake Roll. I have a few chocolate frosting recipes I love but I wanted to try something new; something fluffy and light and rich. This frosting is the PERFECT frosting. I know I say that a lot, but this one is now my go-to frosting recipe. I’m never making regular old chocolate buttercream again! Everyone loved the cake but they especially commented about the frosting and how good it was.

Birthday Cake Roll - this easy cake roll recipe is full of sprinkles and the BEST EVER chocolate frosting. EVERYONE loved the frosting so much!

If you’ve never made a cake roll before, don’t worry. It’s super easy, I promise. You just need a jelly roll pan which is usually about 10×15″ with 1-inch sides.

I get asked all the time if you can use a cake mix to make a cake roll, and you can, but you need to edit the recipe a little. My cake recipe tastes better too – but if you really want to use a cake mix, try this recipe with your favorite mix.

If you need cake roll tips, don’t forget to check out the following:

Plus, I’ll be posting a video on Facebook later today for this cake, and I’ll add it below.

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[French Dip Pinwheels]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21452 2017-02-10T00:04:06Z 2017-02-09T11:00:19Z French Dip Pinwheels – this easy recipe starts with pizza dough and is perfect for an appetizer or easy dinner. The sauce is the best part! Pin it now to save for later! When I was a kid there was a restaurant named Lyon’s that we went to almost every week. It was basically a […]

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French Dip Pinwheels – this easy recipe starts with pizza dough and is perfect for an appetizer or easy dinner. The sauce is the best part!

Pin it now to save for later!

French Dip Pinwheels - this easy pinwheel recipe is perfect for an appetizer or dinner! Pizza dough is wrapped with roast beef and cheese and dipped in a french dip sauce!

When I was a kid there was a restaurant named Lyon’s that we went to almost every week. It was basically a diner, but a little more upscale than a Mel’s. I’d eat there with my parents on Friday nights and we’d do family dinners there on weekends, and once I got to high school we’d land there late for milkshakes and fries or for 3am breakfast during sleepovers.

I think it was at Lyon’s where I was first had a French Dip sandwich. I’m pretty sure I used to order them because it was the only sandwich I knew came already plain; I was such a picky kid that I was always having to ask to leave off sauces or condiments and the dip sandwich came with just meat and bread (and sometimes cheese). Back then I hated using the dipping sauce, because, condiments, but I loved the meat and bread. Over the years I’ve branched out into enjoying dipping my French Dips into the au jus and it’s still one of my favorite sandwiches to order at restaurants or make at home for a quick dinner.

Recently I made French Dips for dinner and Jordan loved them. Jordan’s just as picky as I was, and sometimes more so: she doesn’t like a lot of meat, won’t eat pasta or rice or potatoes, or even beans. Feeding her is always tricky, so I was delighted when she liked French Dip sandwiches (with beef or turkey).

I love making little variations on sandwiches like the classic Dip because then it’s easier to feed lots of people. At New Year’s Eve I made these French Dip Pinwheels and everyone raved about them. Plus they’re so easy to make, and you can make them for dinner or a crowd. And the au jus is the perfect sauce!

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[Small Batch Skillet Brownie for two]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21514 2017-02-08T14:25:38Z 2017-02-07T11:00:48Z Small Batch Skillet Brownie – this easy one bowl brownie recipe is the perfect dessert for two. It’s so rich and chocolatey and is the best brownie recipe! PIN IT NOW to save for later! It’s almost Valentine’s Day! Somehow it’s snuck up on me this year and I feel totally unprepared. I don’t think […]

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Small Batch Skillet Brownie – this easy one bowl brownie recipe is the perfect dessert for two. It’s so rich and chocolatey and is the best brownie recipe!

PIN IT NOW to save for later!

Small Batch Skillet Brownie for two - this easy one bowl brownie recipe makes a small batch for two! It's gooey and rich and my FAVORITE brownie recipe!

It’s almost Valentine’s Day! Somehow it’s snuck up on me this year and I feel totally unprepared. I don’t think we’re going to do much, but I know there will be heart shaped pancakes. Jordan has dance that night so maybe Mel and I will be able to sneak in an hour-long date…but who knows. Such is the life as a parent, right?

There is pretty much only one thing I’m sure of when it comes to Valentine’s Day: Mel won’t eat a lick of dessert. I may get a box of chocolates…and I’ll eat them all myself. If I go to the trouble of making brownies or a pie it will just all end up on my hips…because I’ll be the only one eating it. That’s why I love making desserts for two…because really they’re for one because I can get away with eating the whole thing myself because it’s a small batch.

I think this ooey gooey small batch skillet brownie is the BEST dessert for two I’ve made – ever. It’s SUPER chocolatey, which makes it perfect for Valentine’s Day! And who knows…maybe I can talk Mel into grabbing that other spoon for just a bite…or two.

Small Batch Skillet Brownie for two - this easy one bowl brownie recipe makes a small batch for two! It's gooey and rich and my FAVORITE brownie recipe!

It’s not hard to take your favorite brownie or cookie recipe and turn them into a small batch dessert….if you’re good at math, that is. Did you know that I was a math major in college? And that I taught Algebra and Geometry to high school students for about 5 years? I don’t miss teaching (not one little bitty bit) but I do miss doing math. Proofs were my favorite, but give me a good old quadratic formula to solve and I’ll still dig right in.

The hardest part about dividing recipes into smaller portions is dealing with the eggs. It’s hard to divide an egg in half, so I especially like it when a recipe works out well enough that the small batch just uses a whole egg, like this one. The rest of it is just turning cups into tablespoons (1 cup = 16 tablespoons) and cups into ounces (1 cup = 8 ounces) and then doing some fractions and conversions, which I’ve gotten pretty good at over my blogging career.

This skillet brownie recipe turns out PERFECTLY and is the best dessert for two (or one…or even three), especially when you add ice cream on top.

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Dorothy Kern http://www.crazyforcrust.com <![CDATA[Sprinkle Cookies]]> http://www.crazyforcrust.com/?p=21498 2017-02-01T21:53:56Z 2017-02-05T11:00:37Z Sprinkle Cookies – this easy sugar cookie recipe is full of sprinkles with a dairy-free option! Make them colorful for Valentine’s Day or any day! I am OBSESSED with sprinkles. I love every single color. I have a full drawer stuffed with them. I buy the rainbow ones in bulk and am always buying holiday […]

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Sprinkle Cookies – this easy sugar cookie recipe is full of sprinkles with a dairy-free option! Make them colorful for Valentine’s Day or any day!

Sprinkle Cookies - this easy sugar cookie recipe is full of sprinkles and is dairy-free! EVERYONE loves these cookies!

I am OBSESSED with sprinkles. I love every single color. I have a full drawer stuffed with them. I buy the rainbow ones in bulk and am always buying holiday jimmies even when I don’t need them because I never want to run out. I have makeup kits that are sprinkled and the wallpaper on my phone is a pic I snapped 5 years ago of the inside of a sprinkles jar.

My 40th birthday party later this year? Rainbow Sprinkle themed.

My obsession with sprinkles is probably why I make lots of funfetti desserts, and why I’m always making pudding cookies with sprinkles (like, for the 4th of July or Santa or Cupid or a random party). I even made cookies with sprinkles for my favorite football team to win the Super Bowl…although since Mel and I like different teams this year I’m not going to spill who I’m rooting for (*cough* go black and red *cough*).

ANYWAY, my point is I LOVE SPRINKLES. So it’s not surprising that I added them to my favorite sugar cookie recipe. By adding lots of crunchy sprinkles to the batter, they don’t need frosting, which makes them healthier. DUH. And, it also makes them easier to make for kids with allergies. I made these dairy-free with one little substitution: butter-flavored shortening sticks. One of my daughter’s friends has to avoid dairy products so I’m always using those Crisco sticks to make her cookies and cakes.

Sprinkles = no frosting = no dairy to avoid. Dairy-free frosting is hard to make taste good. Besides, I love sprinkles more than I love frosting.

Sprinkle Cookies - this easy sugar cookie recipe is full of sprinkles! I love dipping the bottoms in chocolate for a sweet treat. EVERYONE loves these cookies!

These cookies are so versatile. You can add rainbow sprinkles, which I like best. Leave them plain, or you can even dip them in melted chocolate. I did that with some of these just because they’re so pretty (and extra yummy) dipped in dark and white chocolate.

You can also make them with ANY color sprinkles you like. Is it close to Valentine’s Day, by chance? Use red and pink. Christmas? Red and green. 4th of July, Halloween, Easter…there is ALWAYS a way to decorate these cookies for your favorite holiday.

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