Chocolate

Fudgy Chocolate Sheet Cake

Fudgy Chocolate Sheet Cake by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a simple recipe made without a stand mixer. The cake is scented with cocoa powder and coffee and the easy pour-on stovetop glaze makes it sweet and fudgy. A sprinkle of salt makes this crowd-pleasing dessert a little sweet and salty. Learn how simple it is to make this potluck All-star cake on thewoodandspoon.com

Happy Friday, friends! Can you believe we’ve made it to spring? I, for one, could not be more thrilled. Give me all the sunshine and blooming trees, Easter egg hunts and chocolate bunnies, outdoor picnics and whatever else this warmer weather wants to offer. I’m all in. This week, my kids have been on spring break, and we’ve been keeping busy visiting with family, soaking up the sunshine, and, of course, baking! Today, I get to share a really kid-friendly bake, this fudgy chocolate sheet cake.

Fudgy Chocolate Sheet Cake by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a simple recipe made without a stand mixer. The cake is scented with cocoa powder and coffee and the easy pour-on stovetop glaze makes it sweet and fudgy. A sprinkle of salt makes this crowd-pleasing dessert a little sweet and salty. Learn how simple it is to make this potluck All-star cake on thewoodandspoon.com

You might remember, my first book, HER DAILY BREAD, came out last December. Since then, I’ve had the pleasure of seeing many of you making some of the recipes, and it has motivated me to continue sharing one each month here on this site! Today’s fudgy chocolate sheet cake is one of the more simple baked goods from the book, and it’s the perfect recipe for beginner bakers or anyone hoping to serve a crowd. With just two bowls, loads of cocoa powder, and just under an hour of time, you can put together one of these fudgy goodies of your own.

Fudgy Chocolate Sheet Cake by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a simple recipe made without a stand mixer. The cake is scented with cocoa powder and coffee and the easy pour-on stovetop glaze makes it sweet and fudgy. A sprinkle of salt makes this crowd-pleasing dessert a little sweet and salty. Learn how simple it is to make this potluck All-star cake on thewoodandspoon.com

Fudgy Chocolate Cake

My inspiration for this treat came from a local restaurant. There’s a great counter service place nearby that serves humble slices of chocolate cake with a thick, fudgy frosting on top. Anytime I visit there, I love to grab a slice to go, enjoying forkfuls of the generous serving over the next few days. This fudgy chocolate sheet cake is reminiscent of that quick-service favorite, although the icing here is more of a sugary, pour-on glaze. Truly, it’s so simple and delicious.

Fudgy Chocolate Sheet Cake by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a simple recipe made without a stand mixer. The cake is scented with cocoa powder and coffee and the easy pour-on stovetop glaze makes it sweet and fudgy. A sprinkle of salt makes this crowd-pleasing dessert a little sweet and salty. Learn how simple it is to make this potluck All-star cake on thewoodandspoon.com

How to Make It

To make this fudgy chocolate sheet cake, we start with the cake batter. First, melt together the butter, coffee, and cocoa powder. Add this to the combined dry ingredients. Sour cream and a couple of eggs, which keep the cake moist, comes next to finish out the batter. While the cake bakes, begin preparing the icing. On the stovetop, butter, water, and cocoa powder melt together and stir into powdered sugar. The liquid glaze gets poured all over the still-warm cake while it is fresh from the oven before being allowed to rest and set up. The glaze thickens slightly but only after being subtly infused with the spongy cake.

Fudgy Chocolate Sheet Cake by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a simple recipe made without a stand mixer. The cake is scented with cocoa powder and coffee and the easy pour-on stovetop glaze makes it sweet and fudgy. A sprinkle of salt makes this crowd-pleasing dessert a little sweet and salty. Learn how simple it is to make this potluck All-star cake on thewoodandspoon.com

This fudgy chocolate sheet cake is a potluck all-star. With a tender, moist crumb and a fudgy, pour-on icing, this cake comes together quickly, serves a crowd, and tastes delicious for days. Bonus: no fancy decorating tools required here. For a darker, more intensely flavored cake, try substituting dark cocoa powder for the regular unsweetened variety. Just don’t skip the sprinkle of sea salt at the end— it really makes this cake shine! If you enjoy it as much as I do, be sure to check out my book, HER DAILY BREAD, where 52 recipes and daily readings make for a book full of inspiring words and bites to feast on. Happy Baking & Happy Friday!

If you like this fudgy chocolate sheet cake you should try:

Marble Layer Cake
Banana Cream Pie Cake
Flourless Chocolate Cake
One-Bowl Chocolate Cake

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Fudgy Chocolate Sheet Cake

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 45
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 16 Servings
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

For the cake:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup brewed coffee
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon table salt
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • ½ cup sour cream, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the icing:

  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons water
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • Maldon sea salt, optional

Instructions

To prepare the cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 9×13” pan.
  2. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the butter, coffee, and cocoa powder, stirring regularly until melted. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook for 30 seconds. Remove from heat and set aside while you assemble the dry ingredients.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking salt, and salt. Add the butter mixture and stir just until combined. In a small, separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla, and fold this mixture into the batter. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, about 20—25 minutes.

To prepare the icing:

  1. When the cake is about halfway through baking, combine the butter, water, cocoa powder, and vanilla in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk regularly and be careful not to boil the mixture. Once the butter is melted, remove the pan from heat and carefully whisk in the powdered sugar until smooth. Pour the icing over the warm, finished cake and enjoy once the icing has set! Serve with a sprinkle of flaky salt if desired.

Did you make this recipe?

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Mini Yellow Cake

Mini Yellow Cake by Wood and Spoon blog. This tiny yellow cake is perfect for small celebrations, small batch bites, and smash cakes! Learn how simple it is to make a moist yellow cake from scratch with a fudge chocolate stovetop frosting on thewoodandspoon.com

I refuse to accept we are halfway through March. We’re three months into 2022, and, somehow, my brain is stuck somewhere back in November of 2021. Sure, I’ve packed a whole lot into life over the past few months (Trips! A book launch! Christmas!), but I seriously need to get it together. In moments like this, when my mind is going into overdrive, I’m grateful for the consistency this site offers me. It’s nice to know that, rain or shine, 2021 or 2022, busy or slow, I need to show up here every 8 days with a fun sweet something or another for you, and as hard as that is sometimes, it’s good for me. So, thanks!

Mini Yellow Cake by Wood and Spoon blog. This tiny yellow cake is perfect for small celebrations, small batch bites, and smash cakes! Learn how simple it is to make a moist yellow cake from scratch with a fudge chocolate stovetop frosting on thewoodandspoon.com

Even though we’re going on the SIXTH year at this blogging thing, I have yet to post a yellow cake. Isn’t that bizarre? Growing up, yellow cake (well, and funfetti, obvi) was the classic cake flavor I could count on at every special occasion. When you grow up in house that depends heavily on Betty Crocker, you get super familiar with the deliciousness that is box cakes, and I’m not alone here. Yellow cake is a classic, and I think it is high time we carved out the space it deserves on Wood and Spoon. But instead of going full-on 1990’s with this yellow cake madness, I’ve decided to offer something a little different: a Mini Yellow Cake! With it’s petite size, crowd-pleasing flavor, and limitless decor options, this is going to your go-to cake for all your pint-sized celebrations. Let me tell you how to make it!

How to Make It

The first thing you need to know about this mini yellow cake is the composition of the cake layers themselves. Yellow cakes attribute their color, flavor, and fluff to egg yolks and butter. With those two ingredients, this cake has a tender crumb and rich flavor. The frosting here is a bit different too- in lieu of a powdered sugar and cocoa powder tooth ache, I opted for a chocolate ganache-esquire frosting that is silky and fudgy without being too sweet. YUM.

Mini Yellow Cake by Wood and Spoon blog. This tiny yellow cake is perfect for small celebrations, small batch bites, and smash cakes! Learn how simple it is to make a moist yellow cake from scratch with a fudge chocolate stovetop frosting on thewoodandspoon.com
Mini Yellow Cake by Wood and Spoon blog. This tiny yellow cake is perfect for small celebrations, small batch bites, and smash cakes! Learn how simple it is to make a moist yellow cake from scratch with a fudge chocolate stovetop frosting on thewoodandspoon.com

So what if you’re not after a super mini yellow cake? Simply double the recipe, bake the cake in 2- 9” pans at the same temperature, and once a toothpick inserted comes out clean, call it a day! I love having a tiny cake recipe in my back pocket, but we can easily adapt to make more cake for more friends. After all, sometimes more is more!

So happy Thursday, happy 2022, happy whatever the heck today is. But most of all, happy baking this mini yellow cake!

Mini Yellow Cake by Wood and Spoon blog. This tiny yellow cake is perfect for small celebrations, small batch bites, and smash cakes! Learn how simple it is to make a moist yellow cake from scratch with a fudge chocolate stovetop frosting on thewoodandspoon.com
Mini Yellow Cake by Wood and Spoon blog. This tiny yellow cake is perfect for small celebrations, small batch bites, and smash cakes! Learn how simple it is to make a moist yellow cake from scratch with a fudge chocolate stovetop frosting on thewoodandspoon.com

If you like this mini yellow cake you should try:

Smash Cake Tutorial
Almond Toffee Cake
Milk Chocolate Chip Cake
One-Bowl Chocolate Cake
Brownie Batter Cake
Mini Layer Cakes

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Mini Yellow Cake

This mini yellow cake packs all the flavor, fluff, and festivity of any standard cake- just in half the size!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 240
  • Yield: 4-5 Servings
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

For the cake (Adapted from Rose Levy Beranbaum):

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 3 large egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 11/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 11/2 cups cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup milk

For the frosting:

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, diced
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions

To make the cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Farhenheit. Lightly grease 2-6” round cake pans and cut out rounds of parchment paper to fit inside of the bottoms. 
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar on medium speed, scraping the bowl occasionally, until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. With the mixer on low, add the yolks one at a time, followed by the extract. Scrape the sides of the bowl and stir in any unincorporated bits. In a small, separate bowl, stir together the cake flour baking powder, and salt. Add half of the mixture to the butter, stirring on low until nearly integrated. Add the milk and stir. Scrape the bowl and add in the remaining dry ingredients. Fold the mixture until smooth.
  3. Divide the batter between the two pans and bake in the preheated oven for about 22-23 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool completely. 

To make the frosting:

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a medium-sized saucepan over low heat. Stirring consistently, melt the ingredients until the mixture is nearly smooth. Remove from heat and allow the mixture to melt completely. Pour the mixture into a bowl and place in the fridge. Allow to cool, stirring ever 15 minutes or so, until the mixture comes to a thickened, fudgy consistency. Then frost the cake. Level the cakes using a serrated knife and use and offset spatula to smooth the frosting on top of the first layer. Place the second cake on top and finish frosting as desired.

Notes

To make a larger, 2 layer, 9″ cake, simply double the ingredients for the cake and bake in 2 (9″) pans! Bake at 350 degrees until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. 

Did you make this recipe?

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Cookie Dough Truffles

Cookie Dough Truffles by Wood and Spoon. These are eggless cookie dough balls that are dipped in melted dark chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt. The finished product are mini homemade chocolate truffles that are perfect for cookie dough lovers. Learn how simple the recipe is on thewoodandspoon.com

Happy Weekend, friends! Can you believe we’ve almost made it to February? In years past, February has been our month for all things CHOCOLATE- candies and cakes, cookies and muffins, even a few ice creams in between! Although this month won’t be exclusively chocolate recipes, I did want to nod to Valentine’s Day today with a cute gift guide for your GALentine- all the friends and moms and ladies that make your life special. (Sidebar: there is absolutely nothing wrong with sending this guide to your man-friends either. Sometimes they need a little help shopping too.) Let’s take a peek at the gift guide and then roll on to the main event: cookie dough truffles. 

Valentines Day Gift Guide for Galentine. Presents to buy for women, girl, ladies this February.

Galentine Gifts

1. Silk Pillowcase This silky pillowcase from Booklinen will give your galentine all sorts of sweet dreams.
2. Monogrammed Travel Jewelry Case No money for jewelry? Give her something to store it in instead!
3. Wool Sweater Cozy up with this beautiful cropped mockneck sweater.
4. Ugg Boots For a girl’s night in, skip the fancy outfit and stay warm with these short Ugg boots.
5. Envelope Embosser Send all the love notes you want with a personalized envelope embosser.
6. Lip Sleeping Mask Keep that pucker chap-free with one of these tinted overnight lip masks.
7. Sunglasses What’s so wrong about looking through rose-colored glasses?
8. Bud Vase Skip the fancy bouquet and buy your galentine something to put a single stem in instead.
9. Sea Salt Caramels These chewy bites of sweet and salt from Sugarfina are better than any box of chocolates I’ve ever had.

Cookie Dough Truffles by Wood and Spoon. These are eggless cookie dough balls that are dipped in melted dark chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt. The finished product are mini homemade chocolate truffles that are perfect for cookie dough lovers. Learn how simple the recipe is on thewoodandspoon.com

Cookie Dough Truffles

These cookie dough truffles are about as simple as truffles get. Sure, they require a little chill time and melting of chocolate, but other than that, these are no-bake treats that anyone can rally around. I’ve long been a cookie dough eater, and combining this eggless recipe with a quick candied coating (plus a sprinkle of sea salt!) makes for an adorable, bite-sized treat that will make all your favorite people feel loved. Let me tell you how to make them. 


First, we start by preparing the cookie dough. Butter, brown sugar, and sugar with a mixer come together until smooth and creamed. A pinch of salt, vanilla, and milk come next followed by the flour and mini chocolate chips. Keep in mind that newer recommendations suggest not eating raw flour; to be on the safe side, you can opt for a heat-treated one instead. Chill the cookie dough truffles batter until firm and scoopable- about 2 hours. Then, use a small cookie scoop to portion out rounds of dough. Briefly chill while you melt down chocolate. I prefer to use bittersweet chocolate chips, but you can easily opt for a semisweet or even baking melt instead. Melt gently until smooth and then use a toothpick to dip individual cookie dough truffles into the mixture. I like to finish each off with an extra drizzle of chocolate and sprinkle of sea salt.

Cookie Dough Truffles by Wood and Spoon. These are eggless cookie dough balls that are dipped in melted dark chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt. The finished product are mini homemade chocolate truffles that are perfect for cookie dough lovers. Learn how simple the recipe is on thewoodandspoon.com

I ADORE these cookie dough truffles this time of year (or anytime, really), and I hope you’ll give them a look. Happy Saturday and Happy Baking!

If you like these cookie dough truffles, you should check out:

No-Churn Coffee Cookie Dough Ice Cream
Brown Sugar Cookie Dough and Cone Ice Cream
Homemade Chocolate Truffles
White Chocolate Raspberry Tarts

Cookie Dough Truffles by Wood and Spoon. These are eggless cookie dough balls that are dipped in melted dark chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt. The finished product are mini homemade chocolate truffles that are perfect for cookie dough lovers. Learn how simple the recipe is on thewoodandspoon.com
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Cookie Dough Truffles

These cookie dough truffles feature edible chocolate chip cookie dough centers, melted dark chocolate shells, and sea salt!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Total Time: 30
  • Yield: 34
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (113 gm) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup (130 gm) brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50 gm) sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • ¾ cup (100 gm) flour
  • 1 cup (150 gm) mini chocolate chips
  • 16 ounces dark chocolate chips or melting wafers
  • Flaked sea salt, if desired

Instructions

  1. Beat the butter on medium speed in a medium sized bowl until smooth. Add the brown sugar and sugar and continue beating on medium to cream together, about 1 minute. Add the salt, vanilla, and milk, stirring to combine. Add the flour and beat on low just until all of the ingredients are combined. Add the chocolate chips and beat to combine. Place the cookie dough covered in the fridge to chill for 2 hours.
  2. After chilling, use a small cookie scoop to portion and roll out 1” balls of dough until smooth. Pop back in the fridge or freezer briefly while you melt your chocolate.
  3. In a medium bowl, melt the dark chocolate chips or melting wafers in a microwave for 20-30 second intervals, stirring in between each interval until smooth. Do not overheat the chocolate!
  4. Stick a toothpick about halfway through a chilled ball of dough and dip it into the chocolate, being sure to coat each side. Use your finger to push the ball off the toothpick and onto wax paper-lined sheet pan. Continue this with the remaining balls of dough until each have been dipped and use any remaining chocolate to drizzle on top of the balls. Sprinkle with sea salt while the chocolate is still melty and then chill briefly to set.

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Nutella Coffee & The Most Popular Recipes of 2021!

Nutella Coffee by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a recipe from Her Daily Bread book. A rich, whipped cream topped coffee sweetened with rich dollops of chocolate hazelnut spread. To learn how to make this simple beverage, find the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

Happy New Year, friends! It’s been a *hot* minute since we last chatted, and I’m dying to know: how was your holiday? Were you able to rest? Celebrate? Love someone in big ways? Our Christmas was pretty routine, with the exception of my book release, and I gotta tell you- mundane felt good. We did a lot less of the Christmassy stuff this year, opting instead for movies, bowls of popcorn, and lots of pajamas. I’m not sure that my kids will remember a childhood filled with trips to visit Santa, gingerbread houses, and extra decorations, but they’ll definitely remember Mom plopping down next to them in her bathrobe. This year, that kind of quiet was just what we needed.

Nutella Coffee by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a recipe from Her Daily Bread book. A rich, whipped cream topped coffee sweetened with rich dollops of chocolate hazelnut spread. To learn how to make this simple beverage, find the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

In the past, I’ve drummed up a whole bunch of expectations for myself this time of year: personal goals, marriage goals, work goals, and more than a few body-centric lists of ways I could do better. My personality is the kind that thrives wherever bullet points and checkmarks are concerned, and I’ve rarely met a benchmark I didn’t mind running towards. But this year, I’m at a loss. To be honest, I feel like I have very little direction and even fewer goals I want to pursue, so even though my inner drive is telling me to GO, my brain keeps responding with a, “but… where?”

For some reason, this troubles me. Not because I’m discontent with my own life or what I’ve achieved or the things I have to offer as a woman, mother, or writer, but because, in a lot of ways, I’ve trained myself to be ever on the move. It feels good to check off those lists. I like claiming those achievements as my own. Why can’t I do and have it all?

Nutella Coffee by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a recipe from Her Daily Bread book. A rich, whipped cream topped coffee sweetened with rich dollops of chocolate hazelnut spread. To learn how to make this simple beverage, find the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

-“Being quiet, willing to learn, ready to question and wonder and think in new ways- this is how we grow.

For me, the stillness of not knowing is uncharted territory. And while it’s not the kind that feels comfy cozy, I do think it could be precisely what I need. We don’t have to have the maps or lists or plans figured out to move forward, and there’s lots to learn in the waiting, too. Being quiet, willing to learn, ready to question and wonder and think in new ways- this is how we grow. It’s not a stagnant or backtracking thing, and taking a step in a new direction doesn’t mean that ground has been lost. And certainly a lack of resolutions doesn’t mean a lack of resolve. So that’s me right now. Nothing terribly exciting, and certainly not the kind of commentary you’d expect to find on a blog post about Nutella coffee, but it’s where I am and I thought I’d let you know. 🙂

Nutella Coffee by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a recipe from Her Daily Bread book. A rich, whipped cream topped coffee sweetened with rich dollops of chocolate hazelnut spread. To learn how to make this simple beverage, find the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

Nutella Coffee

So without further ado, here’s the first recipe of 2022- Nutella Coffee! This one is an offering from my book, and I love it for its ease and comfort. Here, strong coffee is made even more rich with the addition of chocolate hazelnut spread. A dollop (or two! or three!) of whipped cream rounds this out as the best little afternoon pick-me-up or dessert.

Also, not miss the top 10 recipes of 2021! Collectively, these recipes were viewed hundreds of thousands of times, and I gotta say- you all pick well! Out of these, my favorites are the cookies and cream rolls, the bourbon bundt cake, and the banana Nutella muffins, but I’ll let you decide! Give them a peep and let me know what you think! Happy Wednesday, Happy New Year, and Happy Baking, y’all!

Nutella Coffee by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a recipe from Her Daily Bread book. A rich, whipped cream topped coffee sweetened with rich dollops of chocolate hazelnut spread. To learn how to make this simple beverage, find the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com
1. Brownie Petit Fours
2. Bourbon Bundt Cake
3. Banana Nutella Muffins
4. Cookies and Cream Rolls
5. Maple Oatmeal Biscuits
6. Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
7. Funfetti Cookies
8. Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins
9. Mini Cinnamon Rolls
10. Mini Layer Cakes
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Nutella Coffee

This Nutella coffee is strong coffee made extra rich with the addition of Nutella and fresh whipped cream!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Total Time: 5
  • Yield: 1-2 servings
  • Category: Beverages

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces strong brewed coffee
  • 3 tablespoons chocolate hazelnut spread (like Nutella)
  • Fresh whipped cream

Instructions

  1. In a large measuring liquid cup or oversized mug, use a milk frother or small whisk to stir the Nutella into the coffee until all the chocolate has melted and combined smoothly. Top with a dollop of whipped cream and enjoy!

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Chocolate Caramel Cookies

Chocolate Caramel Cookies by Wood and Spoon Blog. These are cocoa scented cookies stuffed with caramel chocolate candies so that each bite of cookie oozes with rich decadent insides. This recipe freezes well and serves a crowd. Find this double chocolate cookie recipe and how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com

You guys have heard me talk about one of my favorite mantras, right? “Bloom where you’re planted.” It basically means to take full advantage of your surroundings and season of life, sinking your proverbial roots deep to grow, flourish, and thrive no matter where it is you find yourself. I adopted this saying as my own about 8 years ago when I left my friends, life, and job in Birmingham, AL to move to my husband’s hometown of Selma. After months of feeling sorry for myself and longing for bits of my old life back, a stranger shared the Bloom mentality with me, and I was hooked. I decided right there it was time to start stretching out my roots; I wanted to bloom.

Chocolate Caramel Cookies by Wood and Spoon Blog. These are cocoa scented cookies stuffed with caramel chocolate candies so that each bite of cookie oozes with rich decadent insides. This recipe freezes well and serves a crowd. Find this double chocolate cookie recipe and how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com

Since then, I’ve stepped into all sorts of new seasons that have welcomed me to grow in unexpected ways. Marriage, motherhood, building a home, and all the things that have come with this job have, in many ways, uprooted the comforts of an autonomous and predictable life, forcing me to find new ways to bloom. It’s challenging and not without its fair share of pain. Still, the process of taking root, connecting with others, and growing together has been a really rewarding thing. Maybe you can relate.

“Embrace uncertainty. Some of the most beautiful chapters of our life won’t have a title until much later.” -Bob Goff

For months, I’ve been saying that I’m in a season of change. Today, I’m even more sure of it than ever before. Even without some visible shift on the horizon, I can sense that I’m edging into something new. And knowing that, having wrestled with the unrest and want of it all, I can’t help but slowly stretch out my roots in search of that something to take hold of, explore, and grow into.

Chocolate Caramel Cookies by Wood and Spoon Blog. These are cocoa scented cookies stuffed with caramel chocolate candies so that each bite of cookie oozes with rich decadent insides. This recipe freezes well and serves a crowd. Find this double chocolate cookie recipe and how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com

Know that, for now, things here will stay the same, but I am on the hunt. I’m not sure if the shift is familial, personal, or professional; what I do know is that I want more for this space and my life in general. If you find yourself with a similar unrest, I hope you’ll take this opportunity to reflect and find any areas you may want to more fully bloom into. Although it rarely comes without growing pains, the end result is so worth it, and you certainly won’t be stretching alone. 🙂

Chocolate Caramel Cookies by Wood and Spoon Blog. These are cocoa scented cookies stuffed with caramel chocolate candies so that each bite of cookie oozes with rich decadent insides. This recipe freezes well and serves a crowd. Find this double chocolate cookie recipe and how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com

Chocolate Caramel Cookies

These truly are out of season. In a time when we should be eating drippy frozen cones and berry-laden pies, cakes, and tortes, why on earth would I be sharing chocolate caramel cookies? The honest truth is this: They’re delicious. That’s why. Let me tell you how to make them.

To make the dough, we start by creaming butter, brown sugar, and sugar. Once softened, combined, and smooth, eggs and extract are added, followed by the dry ingredients. Cocoa powder lends the chocolate flavors and dark color here, but semisweet chocolate chips add additional richness and gooey bite. After a quick chill in the fridge, the cookies are stuffed with soft caramels (or Rolos for me!) and baked in the oven.

Chocolate Caramel Cookies by Wood and Spoon Blog. These are cocoa scented cookies stuffed with caramel chocolate candies so that each bite of cookie oozes with rich decadent insides. This recipe freezes well and serves a crowd. Find this double chocolate cookie recipe and how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com

One thing to note about these chocolate caramel cookies is the filling. Some caramels will harden upon baking, so if you opt for those over a Rolo candy, be sure to enjoy the cookies warm. If desired, a sprinkle of sea salt on top will help to balance the sweetness and provide a salted caramel richness that is undeniably delicious. Either way, in season or out of season, I hope you’ll give these chocolate caramel cookies a try. They truly are delightful!

Happy Tuesday to you all and HAPPY BAKING!

If you like these cookies you should try:

Triple Chocolate Cookies
Chocolate Peppermint Olive Oil Cookies
Coconut Almond Chocolate cookies
Mint Chocolate Sandwich Cookies
Peanut Butter Caramel Pretzel Chocolate Chip Cookies
White Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Cookies

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Chocolate Caramel Cookies

These chocolate caramel cookies are cocoa scented, loaded with chocolate chips, and stuffed with a gooey chocolate caramel candy!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 120
  • Yield: 16 Cookies
  • Category: Cookies

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 11/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cups cocoa powder
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 11-/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips or chunks
  • 16 soft caramels or rolo candies

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and sugar. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract and stir to combine. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add in the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir on low until combined and then stir in the chocolate chips. 
  2. Use a large cookie scoop or a measuring cup to portion our 3 tablespoon-sized balls of dough. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment and cover with plastic wrap or a tea towel. Refrigerate to firm up for 1-2 hours or overnight if desired. 
  3. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and halve the dough balls. Place one soft caramel or rolo candy in between two halves of dough and then form the dough around the candy. Roll the ball to smooth and place 2” apart on a prepared baking sheet. Bake in two batches in the preheated oven until the edges are set and then centers are cookies, about 11-12 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before enjoying. 

Notes

  • Some varieties of store-bought caramel will firm to hard when the cookies are cooled. If you opt for these kind of caramels, be sure to enjoy the cookies while warm. I prefer rolos or softer caramel candies for these cookies as you can enjoy them even when cool. 

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Brown Sugar Cookie Dough and Cone Ice Cream

Brown Sugar Cookie Dough and Cone Ice Cream by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a brown sugar ice cream base loaded with chunks of eggless cookie dough and chocolate coated waffle cone pieces. The end product is like a cookies and ice cream dessert with tons of texture, chocolate, and flavor! Learn how simple it is to make this ice cream machine ice cream from thewoodandspoon.com

I’m told summer doesn’t technically start until June 20th, but honestly, who is even following that calendar? If school’s out, the sun is shining, and brown sugar cookie dough and cone ice cream is in my freezer, we’re calling it summer. So today, grab your shades, your sunblocks, and your ice cream cones, because it’s officially time for a summer deep dive!

Brown Sugar Cookie Dough and Cone Ice Cream by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a brown sugar ice cream base loaded with chunks of eggless cookie dough and chocolate coated waffle cone pieces. The end product is like a cookies and ice cream dessert with tons of texture, chocolate, and flavor! Learn how simple it is to make this ice cream machine ice cream from thewoodandspoon.com

What’s your most favorite part of summer? The beach? Fishing? Popsicles around the clock? When I was growing up, summer meant fireflies and s’mores and hours of jumping into the pool with my best friends, but as I get older, I’m finding that June through July looks a heck of a lot different. As a work-from-home Mom, summer is less of a reprieve from the work of the school year and more of a shift in job description. Instead of chauffeuring to and from school, car rides are taken to day camps, the pool, and grandparents’ houses. Instead of packing lunchboxes, we’re packing picnics and snacks to eat at the ball field. Where we once nagged over homework and bedtimes, we’re now reapplying sunscreen, hosing sand off of stick little feet, and attempting to comb through salt-matted hair. Momming during the summer is hardly a vacation, but y’all, it is really good.

Brown Sugar Cookie Dough and Cone Ice Cream

Today marks the official first day of summer in our house. All of my kids are out of their normal school routine and we are officially commencing operation summer bucket list. For the next 82 days, I’ll be the ringleader to one small band of sun-tanned popsicle eaters, and I can report, at least as of day one, that I’m truly looking forward to it. So to get the summer game started on this site as well, we’re making a brown sugar cookie dough and cone ice cream, and guys, I think you’re really going to like it.

Brown Sugar Cookie Dough and Cone Ice Cream by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a brown sugar ice cream base loaded with chunks of eggless cookie dough and chocolate coated waffle cone pieces. The end product is like a cookies and ice cream dessert with tons of texture, chocolate, and flavor! Learn how simple it is to make this ice cream machine ice cream from thewoodandspoon.com

This brown sugar cookie dough and cone ice cream has a brown sugar ice cream base. It’s loaded with eggless cookie dough chunks and chocolate-coated waffle cone pieces. The end result is a frozen dessert absolutely brimming with flavor, texture, and, of course, chocolate. The ice cream base recipe is adapted from Joy the Baker; the cookie dough is the same one you might have seen in this coffee cookie dough ice cream. The cone pieces, though, are new and potentially one of my current favorite additions to ice cream. Big pieces of waffle cone coated in a dairy-free chocolate magic shell coating keeps swirl into the ice cream. Truly, they’re so yummy.

Brown Sugar Cookie Dough and Cone Ice Cream by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a brown sugar ice cream base loaded with chunks of eggless cookie dough and chocolate coated waffle cone pieces. The end product is like a cookies and ice cream dessert with tons of texture, chocolate, and flavor! Learn how simple it is to make this ice cream machine ice cream from thewoodandspoon.com

Making the Ice Cream

To make this brown sugar cookie dough and cone ice cream, we start by prepping the mix-ins. Butter, sugar, and flour come together with mini chocolate chips to make the little balls of cookie dough. I like to mix the dough just until it begins to come together into clumps, so as to cut back on any extra work it might take to roll individual balls. The chocolate waffle cone pieces are next. Use your hands to crush a few waffle cones into 1/2″-sized pieces and set aside. Next, melt semisweet chocolate chips and coconut oil together until the mixture is smooth and glassy. Toss in the cone pieces, being sure to coat them thoroughly, and then spread the chocolatey pieces out on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. You can speed up the process by popping them into the fridge to set. Finally, the cream cheese and brown sugar ice cream base comes together with a little half and half in an ice cream machine. Process the mixture until it has thickened to a frozen yogurt consistency and then stir in the mix-ins. Allow the ice cream to freeze until fully set.

I hope you guys are well on your way to an enjoyable summer and that you consider including this brown sugar cookie dough and cone ice cream in your dessert lineup in the coming weeks! In the meantime, happy Thursday, happy summer, and happy baking!

If you like this recipe you should try:

No-Churn Coffee Cookie Dough Ice Cream
Oatmeal Cookie Chunk Ice Cream
No-Churn Peanut Butter Caramel Ice Cream
Turtle Ice Cream
No-Churn Sugar Cookie Ice Cream

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Brown Sugar Cookie Dough and Cone Ice Cream

This brown sugar ice cream is loaded with cookie dough chunks and chocolate dipped waffle cone pieces!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Total Time: 360
  • Yield: 1 Quart
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

For the cookie dough:

  • ½ cup (113 gm) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup (130 gm) brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup (65 gm) sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ¾ cup (100 gm) flour
  • 1 cup (150 gm) mini chocolate chips

For the chocolate-covered cone pieces:

  • ¼ cup semisweet chocolate (chips or chopped)
  • ½ teaspoon coconut oil
  • ¾ cup waffle or sugar cones pieces (about ½” size)

For the brown sugar cream cheese ice cream, adapted from “Homemade Decadence” by Joy Wilson

  • 1 (8 oz) package of cream cheese at room temp
  • 2 1/2 cups of cold half-and-half
  • 1 cup pack light brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tablespoons bourbon (Optional)

Instructions

To prepare the cookie dough:

  1. Beat the butter on medium speed in a medium sized bowl until smooth. Add the brown sugar and sugar and continue beating on medium to cream together, about 1 minute. Add the salt, vanilla, and flour and beat on low just until all of the ingredients are combined. Add the chocolate chips and beat to combine. Place the cookie dough in the fridge to cool if desired. Once chilled, the dough should easily crumble into 1/8” dough balls. Set aside in the fridge while you make the ice cream

To prepare the cone pieces:

  1. Melt the chocolate and coconut oil gently in the microwave in 20 seconds intervals until they can be stirred and combined to smooth. Toss in the cone pieces and stir to coat completely. Spread out on a baking sheet lined with wax or parchment paper and allow to cool completely prior to using. 

To prepare the ice cream base:

  1. Combine the cream cheese, brown sugar, and salt in a stand mixer. Once combined, add the half-and-half and bourbon. Blend on high speed until smooth.
  2. Transfer ice cream mixture to an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When the ice cream is done churning, add the cookie dough and cone pieces and stir to combine. Spread into a metal loaf pan or freezer-safe Tupperware and freeze until firm, about 6 hours or overnight. 

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Double Chocolate Pop-Tarts

Double Chocolate Pop-Tarts by Wood and Spoon. These are cocoa powder pie dough pieces stuffed with more chocolate, crimped, baked, a drizzled with a cocoa icing. For faster pop-tarts, you can stuff these with any of your other favorite fillings too: marshmallow fluff, peanut butter, Nutella, or even jam! Learn how simple homemade chocolate pop-tarts are here on thewoodandspoon.com

Y’all, I have been absent from the kitchen as of late. With dance recitals and t-ball games and end of school year programs upon us, it’s been a mental practice (and breath of fresh air) to release myself from the constant need to be bustling about the kitchen. Unsurprisingly, my kids love it; apparently, dinners comprised of carry-out and frozen pizzas are more desirable than the quinoa salads and roasted veggies they’ve grown up on so far. And no, my feelings aren’t hurt, why do you ask?

Double Chocolate Pop-Tarts by Wood and Spoon. These are cocoa powder pie dough pieces stuffed with more chocolate, crimped, baked, a drizzled with a cocoa icing. For faster pop-tarts, you can stuff these with any of your other favorite fillings too: marshmallow fluff, peanut butter, Nutella, or even jam! Learn how simple homemade chocolate pop-tarts are here on thewoodandspoon.com

With some newly freed up time (Sayonara, dishes!), I’ve enjoyed diving head-first into all the Mom activities, specifically the animal formally known as Little League Baseball. It’s our first year with a kid in organized sports, but I can already tell- I’ve drunk the Kool-Aid and am all in. Years ago, I rolled my eyes as my friends described their weeknight schedules- “THREE night games per week? Pfft. That’s for the birds.” Little did I know all that I was missing out on: Cheese fries, sticky bleachers, and the comedic gold that is 5-year-olds dog-piling their teammates to grab the baseball.

Is being a baseball mom a sport too?

Already, I can see how parents get so into their kid’s sports. It’s thrilling to watch them learn and improve and do things you didn’t even know they could do, like slide into the plate or nail a triple, and at the same time, it’s equally fun to watch them do all sorts of stuff you did know they could do: draw pictures in the dirt of the outfield, trip over their shoelaces on the way to the dugout, or scream, “I GOTTA PEE!” as they cross home plate. And while the kids are learning and getting better with each game, we Moms are too. We’re yelling louder, cheering for the other kids by name, and even participating in passive aggressive banter with the umpire who is clearly friends with the Dads coaching the other team. What could be better than that?

Double Chocolate Pop-Tarts by Wood and Spoon. These are cocoa powder pie dough pieces stuffed with more chocolate, crimped, baked, a drizzled with a cocoa icing. For faster pop-tarts, you can stuff these with any of your other favorite fillings too: marshmallow fluff, peanut butter, Nutella, or even jam! Learn how simple homemade chocolate pop-tarts are here on thewoodandspoon.com
Double Chocolate Pop-Tarts by Wood and Spoon. These are cocoa powder pie dough pieces stuffed with more chocolate, crimped, baked, a drizzled with a cocoa icing. For faster pop-tarts, you can stuff these with any of your other favorite fillings too: marshmallow fluff, peanut butter, Nutella, or even jam! Learn how simple homemade chocolate pop-tarts are here on thewoodandspoon.com

Of course, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. It’s always a tiny bit painful to watch your kid on days when everything seems to fall apart. It’s uncomfortable to hear the other parents be hard on their kids (or others parents, for that matter). And don’t even get me started on my new seasonal allergy regimen; between the pollen and the dirt, I don’t even know what’s in my eyes anymore. But all these things, hard days and messy relationships and runny noses included, are stretching points for my kid and me, and I think, ultimately, it’s really healthy to learn to work through those things.

Homemade Double Chocolate Pop-Tarts!

Before we move on to the double chocolate pop-tarts, I’ll leave you with this *adorable* picture of George. He’s the youngest and second smallest kid on the team, but I can also say he’s the most happy and smiliest kid too, win or lose. Watching him play makes me so proud to be his parent, not because he’s the best player, but because I can see how big his heart is… even from my nosebleed seat on the sticky bleachers.

So why these double chocolate pop-tarts? Well, for one, my kids LOVE pop-tarts. I’ve been making them homemade ones for years, but more recently, they tried the OG store-bought ones, and they went nuts. Apparently all those preservatives and articifical flavors really add something special. But when I made these chocoetely homemade ones for the first time, the kids were all in. “Are those for us, Mom? Cant we eat them… for breakfast?!?” True story: any breakfast food that looks suspiciously like dessert is bound to be a winner in any toddler’s book.

Double Chocolate Pop-Tarts by Wood and Spoon. These are cocoa powder pie dough pieces stuffed with more chocolate, crimped, baked, a drizzled with a cocoa icing. For faster pop-tarts, you can stuff these with any of your other favorite fillings too: marshmallow fluff, peanut butter, Nutella, or even jam! Learn how simple homemade chocolate pop-tarts are here on thewoodandspoon.com

How to Make Homemade Pop-Tarts

To make these double chocolate pop-tarts we start with a homemade pie dough. I altered my favorite pie dough recipe, adding a smidge of cocoa powder to create a chocolate pie dough. It’s the perfect offset for the sweetened filling and icing that is to come. After a quick chill in the fridge, we are ready to roll out the pie dough and prepare the filling. The filling for these double chocolate pop-tarts is a melted concoction of butter, chocolate chips, cocoa powder, and powdered sugar. Small dollops of the cooled filling is added to the rolled out pastry squares before they’re topped with more dough, crimped, and popped in the freezer for a final chill. After baking, the pop-tarts are frosted with a simple powdered sugar and cocoa powder frosting. Bon Appetit!

Give these double chocolate pop-tarts a try in the coming days and let me know what you think! And feel free to try out your own alternatives fillings: Nutella, marshmallow fluff, peanut butter, or even homemade jam! Happy Thursday and Happy Baking!

If you like these double chocolate pop-tarts you should try:

Chocolate Pudding Pie
Blueberry Lemon Pop-Tarts
Chocolate Espresso Tarts
Raspberry Champagne Pop-tarts
Chocolate Chess Pie

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Double Chocolate Pop-Tarts

These double chocolate pop-tarts feature a cocoa powder pie dough, a double chocolate filling, and a simple chocolate sugar glaze!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 240
  • Yield: 6 Large Pop-tarts
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

For the dough:

  • 12/3 cups (230 gm) all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup (50 gm) vegetable shortening 
  • 6 tablespoons (85 gm) unsalted butter, cold
  • Approximately 6 tablespoons ice water

For the filling:

  • ½ cup (85 gm) semisweet chocolate chips
  • ½ cup (113 gm) unsalted butter, chopped
  • ¼ cup (30 gm) powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder

For the icing:

  • ½ cup (60 gm) powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder (regular or dark is fine. See notes)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 11/2 tablespoons water

Instructions

  1. To prepare the pop-tarts, begin with the dough. In a large bowl, stir to combine the flour, cocoa powder, and sugar. Using a pastry cutter or the backs of two forks, cut the shortening and butter into the dry ingredients until integrated evenly with pea-sized clumps throughout. Spoon in about 5 tablespoons of ice cold water and begin to gently stir the mixture into a shaggy dough. I usually end up adding about 7 tablespoons of ice water, but add as you go until the dough can be worked together into a ball. Pat out into a flat round disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours until chilled. 
  2. In the meantime, make the filling. In a small saucepan over low heat, combine the chocolate chips and butter. Stir regularly until the chips and butter have melted down into a smooth mixture. Do not overheat or the chocolate will seize. Whisk in the powdered sugar and cocoa powder and place in the fridge to cool to a thick, spreadable peanut butter consistency. If it gets too thick you can gently reheat. We basically just need it thick enough to dollop into the pop-tarts. Don’t let it firm up completely though or you may break your dough.
  3. When ready to assemble your pop-tarts, use a lightly floured rolling pin to roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface into an 8” wide rectangle that is about 1/8” thick. Use a ruler and a sharp knife to trim out pieces that are 3-1/2” x 4-1/2”. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Gather up dough scraps and work them into a ball to roll out again. Trim any additional pieces if you can. You should wind up with about 12 rectangles of dough. Dollop 2 tablespoons of the thickened filling into the center of half of the pieces and then use the back of a spoon to spread it out slightly, leaving a 1” border around the perimeter of the tarts. Use a pastry brush or a wet finger to trace an outline of water around the edges of those pieces- this will help the second piece of dough to stick well. Place a second piece of dough on top of each of the filled pieces and use the back of a floured fork to crimp the edges. Place the pan in the freezer to firm up for at least an hour. 
  4. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375 degrees and use your crimping fork to vent the tarts on top. Bake in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until the top and edges of the pastries are set. Set aside to cool completely while you make your glaze.
  5. To prepare the glaze, combine all of the ingredients and whisk together. The icing should be thick enough to stay on top of the pop-tart. Add additional sugar to thicken or water to thin. Pipe or spoon the glaze on top. 

Notes

  • I used dark cocoa powder for my glaze and made a second batch of lighter glaze with regularly cocoa powder for the drizzle. Both work great and this is totally optional! 

Did you make this recipe?

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Brownie Shortbread Bars

Brownie Shortbread Bars by Wood and Spoon. These are two layer bars made of a buttery vanilla bean shortbread crust and a gooey crackly top brownie. The brownie is rich and fudge without being overly dark, and the crust is crisp and tender. These bars are perfect for the shortbread lovers or for brownie lovers who love a great deal of texture! Learn how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com

Growing up, I remember hearing the phrase, “You can’t have your cake and eat it too.” Even now as a 33-year-old woman, I can honestly tell you that I still don’t have a clue what that saying means. Sure, we can’t always get what we want and there will certainly be circumstances in which we’re forced to choose between two desires, but when it comes to dessert, I think it can sometimes be both. Maybe we can have our cake (or in today’s case, brownie shortbread bars) and eat it too.

Brownie Shortbread Bars by Wood and Spoon. These are two layer bars made of a buttery vanilla bean shortbread crust and a gooey crackly top brownie. The brownie is rich and fudge without being overly dark, and the crust is crisp and tender. These bars are perfect for the shortbread lovers or for brownie lovers who love a great deal of texture! Learn how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com
Brownie Shortbread Bars by Wood and Spoon. These are two layer bars made of a buttery vanilla bean shortbread crust and a gooey crackly top brownie. The brownie is rich and fudge without being overly dark, and the crust is crisp and tender. These bars are perfect for the shortbread lovers or for brownie lovers who love a great deal of texture! Learn how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com

Like with these brownie bars. Why should we have to choose between cookies and brownies? Isn’t it plausible to think that, every once in a while, we can indulge in two wonderful things simultaneously? I would argue YES. Absolutely. So today, I’m going to tell you all about how to make these brownie shortbread bars in hopes that when the craving strikes for both buttery soft shortbread and gooey fudge brownies, you don’t have to choose. You can have the best of both worlds.

Brownie Shortbread Bars by Wood and Spoon. These are two layer bars made of a buttery vanilla bean shortbread crust and a gooey crackly top brownie. The brownie is rich and fudge without being overly dark, and the crust is crisp and tender. These bars are perfect for the shortbread lovers or for brownie lovers who love a great deal of texture! Learn how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com
Brownie Shortbread Bars by Wood and Spoon. These are two layer bars made of a buttery vanilla bean shortbread crust and a gooey crackly top brownie. The brownie is rich and fudge without being overly dark, and the crust is crisp and tender. These bars are perfect for the shortbread lovers or for brownie lovers who love a great deal of texture! Learn how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com

These brownie shortbread bars have two layers. The bottom layer is a simple shortbread crust made from little more than butter, sugar, and flour. The crumbly mixture comes together in a single bowl before being patted out in an 8″ square pan. While the crust bakes slightly in the oven, we begin to mix up our brownie batter. On the stovetop, butter, sugar and chocolate are melted together until smooth. Eggs come next followed by the dry ingredients: flour, cocoa powder, and just a smidge of salt. After a quick bake, the brownies are fragrant crackly-topped, and ready for absolutely devouring.
I hope you’ll give these brownie shortbread bars a try and let me know what you think! Have a terrific weekend and happy baking!

Brownie Shortbread Bars by Wood and Spoon. These are two layer bars made of a buttery vanilla bean shortbread crust and a gooey crackly top brownie. The brownie is rich and fudge without being overly dark, and the crust is crisp and tender. These bars are perfect for the shortbread lovers or for brownie lovers who love a great deal of texture! Learn how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com
Brownie Shortbread Bars by Wood and Spoon. These are two layer bars made of a buttery vanilla bean shortbread crust and a gooey crackly top brownie. The brownie is rich and fudge without being overly dark, and the crust is crisp and tender. These bars are perfect for the shortbread lovers or for brownie lovers who love a great deal of texture! Learn how simple they are to make on thewoodandspoon.com


If you like these brownie shortbread bars you should try:

Shortbread Cookies
Peppermint Brookies
White Chocolate Ganache Shortbread
Pretzel Shortbread Peanut Butter Brownies
Caramel Ganache Brownies

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Brownie Shortbread Bars

These brownie shortbread bars feature a vanilla bean shortbread crust and a gooey crackled brownie top!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 45
  • Total Time: 60
  • Yield: 16
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

For the crust:

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 11/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

For the brownie:

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 11/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons dark cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Instructions

To prepare the bars:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line an 8 or 9” square baking pan with foil. Lightly grease with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Begin by preparing the crust. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and granulated sugar until smooth. Stir in the vanilla bean paste. Add the flour and salt and stir just until combined to crumbs. Gently press the mixture down flat into the bottom of the prepared pan and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes until set. In the meantime, begin making the brownie filling.
  3. In a medium saucepan over low heat, gently melt together the butter, chocolate chips, and sugar, stirring regularly to melt evenly and prevent scorching the chocolate. Once melted and smooth, set aside. 
  4. In a large bowl, beat the eggs on medium speed with a mixer until they lighten in color and fluff up, about 2-3 minutes. Gently stir in the chocolate mixture. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt, stirring just until combined. Pour the batter on top of the prepared shortbread and smooth. Increase the oven heat to 350 and bake for an additional 30-33 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out only with a couple of small brownie crumbs. Do not overbake. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely prior to slicing.

Did you make this recipe?

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Chocolate Mascarpone Cheesecake

Chocolate Mascarpone Cheesecake by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a creamy chocolate cheesecake made with mascarpone cheese, a chocolate sandwich cookie Oreo crust, and a rich caramel topping. The crust is scented with espresso powder and lends a buttery crunch to the otherwise smooth dessert. This is a decadent treat for chocolate lovers and a great alternative to a cream cheese cheesecake. Learn how to make it on thewoodandspoon.com

Can you even believe it’s been a year?

We’ve spent so much of these past 365 days talking about the pandemic; it almost seems redundant for me to spend even another second mentioning it here. The truth is, what we’ve experienced has been life changing. I think it’s really healthy to consider how far we’ve come and what we need moving forward. While it would be easy to look at the past 12 months and try to wish it away or shove it all into the darkest corners of our past, I don’t want to waste this experience; I’d love for each of us to walk away from the pain and trouble of this pandemic as better, more resilient and loving versions of the selves that entered into it. So here’s what I’ve been chewing on.

Chocolate Mascarpone Cheese by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a creamy chocolate cheesecake made with mascarpone cheese, a chocolate sandwich cookie Oreo crust, and a rich caramel topping. The crust is scented with espresso powder and lends a buttery crunch to the otherwise smooth dessert. This is a decadent treat for chocolate lovers and a great alternative to a cream cheese cheesecake. Learn how to make it on thewoodandspoon.com

“Relationship means everything.”

The single greatest take-away I have from this past year is that relationships mean everything. Most of us, prior to 2020, took even the smallest interactions and gestures of kindness for granted. A smile at the grocery store, a lazy coffee date with a friend, sharing a bucket of popcorn at the movies or a bottle of wine around a crowded dining table. The encouragement and solidarity we find in those interactions have the potential to nourish our souls in deep ways. For me, it wasn’t until those interactions were deemed unsafe that I began to realize how much I needed them. Texting, phone calls, and waves from a distant aren’t always enough; sometimes we need that face-t0-face talk with our best friend. We need to hug our grandparents and our little sisters. We need to care for one another with laughter and kindness and touch because we were created for relationship. The isolation of this year hasn’t just been a bummer for our social calendars. It’s left a wanting hole in most of us.

Weeks ago, I met my grandparents in a drive-thru COVID vaccine line to give them their paperwork. The parking lot was filled with maybe a hundred cars, most of which were occupied by elderly people. I’m not sure if it was just me (#hormones), but the energy was almost palpable, and I teared up thinking of all the families who were going to be safely reunited with their grandparents soon. I took a lot of those relationships for granted, and I’m eager to learn from this experience by loving the people around me a little more generously.

Chocolate Mascarpone Cheese by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a creamy chocolate cheesecake made with mascarpone cheese, a chocolate sandwich cookie Oreo crust, and a rich caramel topping. The crust is scented with espresso powder and lends a buttery crunch to the otherwise smooth dessert. This is a decadent treat for chocolate lovers and a great alternative to a cream cheese cheesecake. Learn how to make it on thewoodandspoon.com

“Less really is more.”

Another big take-away I have from this past year is that, in some cases, less really is more. I had the privilege of staying home with my kids those first couple of months of quarantine. Although I complained some about in our scaled-back life, I was grateful for what I found in its place. Where there was once busyness and rushing in our normal day to day life, I found time. A pace of life I hadn’t walked out in years. I’m really grateful to have had those opportunities with my children, and, looking back, I realize that a lot of the “stuff” that filled our calendars before wasn’t really what my heart desired. What I wanted deep down and had the luxury of experiencing during quarantine was intentional relationship with my family. Moving forward, I hope I’ll remember some of that, particularly when the urge to do more (and all too much) sneaks in.

Chocolate Mascarpone Cheese by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a creamy chocolate cheesecake made with mascarpone cheese, a chocolate sandwich cookie Oreo crust, and a rich caramel topping. The crust is scented with espresso powder and lends a buttery crunch to the otherwise smooth dessert. This is a decadent treat for chocolate lovers and a great alternative to a cream cheese cheesecake. Learn how to make it on thewoodandspoon.com

Grace.

The final big thing that this past year has reinforced in my mind is that we all need to show one another a whole bunch of grace. Each of our stories has read completely different these past 365 days. It’s helpful for me to remember that my version of this experience has likely been vastly different from yours. We will all process the challenges and loss of this past year in our own way but we can offer one another grace in the midst of it all, particularly when it comes to areas where we don’t see eye to eye. My hope is that, after living through a year that pruned away a lot of the comforts and certainties and facades that many of us (raises hand!) clung to, we find that all that cutting back and stripping away made room for growth that our previous selves wouldn’t have made room for.

There’s been lots of learning this past year, and this is just a small glimpse into mine. It may have been overkill to share allllll of that, but my hope is that you’ll have the opportunity to reflect on your own story and pick out a few things you want to take with you from here on out. I’d love to here from you about this in the future, but, for now, let’s get to this chocolate mascarpone cheesecake.

Chocolate Mascarpone Cheese by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a creamy chocolate cheesecake made with mascarpone cheese, a chocolate sandwich cookie Oreo crust, and a rich caramel topping. The crust is scented with espresso powder and lends a buttery crunch to the otherwise smooth dessert. This is a decadent treat for chocolate lovers and a great alternative to a cream cheese cheesecake. Learn how to make it on thewoodandspoon.com
Chocolate Mascarpone Cheese by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a creamy chocolate cheesecake made with mascarpone cheese, a chocolate sandwich cookie Oreo crust, and a rich caramel topping. The crust is scented with espresso powder and lends a buttery crunch to the otherwise smooth dessert. This is a decadent treat for chocolate lovers and a great alternative to a cream cheese cheesecake. Learn how to make it on thewoodandspoon.com

Mascarpone Cheesecake

I love cheesecake, particularly when it comes to ones that are made extra with comforting toppings. This chocolate mascarpone cheesecake is all the yummy, creaminess of a traditional cheesecake with the added taste and texture of mascarpone cheese. Add that to a chocolate cookie crust and gooey caramel, and you have yourself a winning combination.

The directions for this chocolate mascarpone cheesecake are pretty thorough, mostly because I know a lot of people struggle with making cheesecakes. There always seems to be sunken centers, fault line cracks, and soggy crusts, right? So, while the instructions may be over-the-top, I find the juice is worth the squeeze here, and that extra attention to detail yields a really fantastic end product. While the star of this show is definitely the cheesecake center, there is room to take some liberties when it comes to the topping. I used a cup of my favorite homemade caramel sauce for this cake, but you are welcome to sub in your favorite store-bought variety or recipe of your own. Or perhaps you want more chocolate? Try a ganache topping, a homemade fudge sauce, or maybe even just some fresh fruit. Make the cheesecake your own here.

Chocolate Mascarpone Cheese by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a creamy chocolate cheesecake made with mascarpone cheese, a chocolate sandwich cookie Oreo crust, and a rich caramel topping. The crust is scented with espresso powder and lends a buttery crunch to the otherwise smooth dessert. This is a decadent treat for chocolate lovers and a great alternative to a cream cheese cheesecake. Learn how to make it on thewoodandspoon.com

Phew. That was a lot of conversation today, but to sum things up– this past year has been a lot, love your people well, and don’t forget to make this chocolate mascarpone cheesecake. Happy Tuesday and happy baking!

If you like this chocolate mascarpone cheesecake you should try:

Simple Cheesecake Bars
Peanut Butter Chocolate Cheesecake
Brown Sugar Cheesecake
Peppermint White Chocolate Cheesecake
Honey Mascarpone Tart with Salty Graham Cracker Crust

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Chocolate Mascarpone Cheesecake

This chocolate mascarpone cheesecake is a rich and fluffy dessert with an espresso scented chocolate cookie crust and a thick caramel topping. 

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 60
  • Total Time: 180
  • Yield: 9 Servings
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

For the crust:

  • 12 ounces (about 31 cookies) chocolate sandwich cookies (like Oreo’s)
  • ½ teaspoon espresso powder
  • 5 tablespoons (70 gm) unsalted butter, melted

For the cheesecake:

  • 1 pound/ 2 blocks (450 gm) of cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1 pound mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (200 gm) sugar
  • ¼ cup (20 gm) cocoa powder
  • 3 large eggs (170 gm), room temperature
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) heavy cream, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup caramel sauce (follow the link in the text of my post for my favorite recipe or use your own favorite recipe or store-bought variety here)

Instructions

To prepare the crust:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare a 9″ springform pan by wrapping it in sheets of aluminum foil. I use 3 layers of extra wide, heavy duty foil wrapped to the top lip of the pan. Spray the inside walls and bottom of the pan with cooking spray.
  3. Process your chocolate sandwich cookies in the blender on medium speed until they have been reduced to crumbs. Combine the crumbs with the espresso powder and melted butter in a small bowl until the crumbs are well moistened. Gently pat out your mixture evenly into the bottom of the pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 12 minutes.

To prepare the cheesecake:

  1. Begin boiling some water in a kettle or saucepan for your water bath.
  2. Place the softened cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Cream on medium speed until smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add the cocoa powder and eggs.  Stir on medium until integrated. Add the cream and vanilla extract and stir to combine. 
  3. Strain the cheesecake batter through a mesh strainer (if desired) into a reserved bowl. Pour the strained batter on top of the crust. Gently rap the pan on the counter to help any air bubbles escape. 
  4. Place your springform pan into a slightly larger baking dish/pan and fill the larger pan with the boiling water you prepared for the water bath until the water reaches about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Carefully place both pans in the preheated oven and bake for 1 hour. After an hour of baking, the edges and top of the cheesecake should be set but still slightly jiggle in the center. Turn the oven off and allow the cheesecake to rest in the oven for an additional hour. Remove from oven and aluminum foil, discard the water bath, and then place the cheesecake in the fridge to chill for several hours or overnight. The cheesecake can be stored in the fridge for several days.
  5. When ready to serve, top with warmed caramel sauce, slice and serve.

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag us — we can’t wait to see what you’ve made!

Chocolate Tiramisu (and announcing MY FIRST BOOK!)

Chocolate Tiramisu by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a small batch tiramisu recipe made in a loaf pan, switched up with the addition of a chocolate ganache. Mascarpone cheese keeps this dessert true to the Italian classic and crisp ladyfingers soak in kahlua and coffee. Learn how to prepare make-ahead tiramisu on thewoodandspoon.com

Grab a fork and settle in, because we are CELEBRATING all sorts of things with a little chocolate tiramisu today.

First off, it’s my FIVE YEAR BLOG ANNIVERSARY. Yep, five years. It blows my mind in every possible way that this site has existed for that long. Together, we’ve made ____ recipes, welcomed two new babies, built a house, had a couple website refreshers, and shared wayyyy too much personal information. If you’ve stuck around with me since the beginning (Hi, Mom), thank you. Your support and emails and kindness have meant the world to me. To have a job that feels more like a hobby is such a blessing, and I couldn’t be more grateful. Although a lot has changed since day one of this site, my love of food and writing remains the same, and I’m thrilled to keep on keeping on here. Which brings me to celebratory item number two:

Chocolate Tiramisu by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a small batch tiramisu recipe made in a loaf pan, switched up with the addition of a chocolate ganache. Mascarpone cheese keeps this dessert true to the Italian classic and crisp ladyfingers soak in kahlua and coffee. Learn how to prepare make-ahead tiramisu on thewoodandspoon.com

Drumroll, please…

I WROTE A BOOK. A real life book (!!!!) It’s been a long road, so I wanted to share a little about the process.

I started this blog in 2016 in hopes of becoming a cookbook author. At the time, I was following other bloggers who had been around a while and were finally landing cookbook deals of their own. I wanted in! So after lots of nervous back-and-forth with my husband, friends, and mother (Hi again, Mom!), I decided to dive in and start this site with the end-goal of writing a book.

Less than two years later, I had established a relationship with a publishing company and was writing a cookbook proposal with one of their senior editors. This was it! My dreams were coming true! We worked hard for months, but the day before my proposal was to be approved for contract, the publishing company was bought out by a giant media company. Immediately, all projects not under contract were suspended, and after another 6 months of back and forth, they were completely dissolved. I was crushed. It had been over a year of time and work and vulnerability with that company, and I was so disappointed to start over.

Chocolate Tiramisu by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a small batch tiramisu recipe made in a loaf pan, switched up with the addition of a chocolate ganache. Mascarpone cheese keeps this dessert true to the Italian classic and crisp ladyfingers soak in kahlua and coffee. Learn how to prepare make-ahead tiramisu on thewoodandspoon.com

My editor for the project was incredibly kind, and at her last day on the job, she connected me with a book agent out of New York. After some conversation and brainstorming, we began working together to iron out the existing proposal. We got a few nibbles from a couple of publishing companies, but ultimately, the project fell flat. By now, it’s January of 2020. It had been two years of proposal writing with no signs of success on the horizon, and here we were, back at square one.

Thank goodness we didn’t give up.

Over the next couple of months, I wrote a new cookbook proposal from scratch, and the day after I submitted it to my agent, I began writing a second proposal. This one was different: a 365-day devotional for women. The Word document on my computer basically filled itself with 56 pages of stories and scripture and thoughts and questions, and less than a month later, it was ready to submit to my agent. We decided to move forward with the devotional, and within no time, I was negotiating offers from multiple publishers. Ultimately, my little project found a home at HarperOne, an imprint of Harper Collins, and in July, I dove head first into writing my very first book. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing more about the project, but for now, I’ll end with this:

Chocolate Tiramisu by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a small batch tiramisu recipe made in a loaf pan, switched up with the addition of a chocolate ganache. Mascarpone cheese keeps this dessert true to the Italian classic and crisp ladyfingers soak in kahlua and coffee. Learn how to prepare make-ahead tiramisu on thewoodandspoon.com

Don’t give up.
Take a chance on your ambitions.
Work hard.
Ignore the pessimists and self-doubt that tell you you’ll never reach the desires in your heart, and if there’s something in there worth going after, do it. When I take inventory of the most beautiful and life-giving things in my story, I’m reminded that absolutely none of it happened overnight, and so much of the deferred hope, perseverance, and effort that I experienced allows me to treasure those gifts for what they are. A closed door or setback in your story doesn’t mean the end of your story, and I really believe that when we push through the barriers and unbelief, we often find breakthrough and joy on the other side.

Chocolate Tiramisu by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a small batch tiramisu recipe made in a loaf pan, switched up with the addition of a chocolate ganache. Mascarpone cheese keeps this dessert true to the Italian classic and crisp ladyfingers soak in kahlua and coffee. Learn how to prepare make-ahead tiramisu on thewoodandspoon.com
Chocolate Tiramisu by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a small batch tiramisu recipe made in a loaf pan, switched up with the addition of a chocolate ganache. Mascarpone cheese keeps this dessert true to the Italian classic and crisp ladyfingers soak in kahlua and coffee. Learn how to prepare make-ahead tiramisu on thewoodandspoon.com

Chocolate Tiramisu

I’ve never actually had chocolate tiramisu until I prepared this particular recipe. Truly, I’m wondering why it’s not made more frequently. I mean, we all love classic tiramisu, right? This is no different, just a little extra chocolate. Here, a chocolate ganache, mascarpone, and whipped cream come together to make an espresso-scented treat that is altogether rich and creamy and comforting. The tall slices make for an elegant dessert that requires very little time and effort. If you’re looking for a simple yet impressive make-ahead dessert, I hope you’ll take a chance on this chocolate tiramisu. Truly, it’s delightful.

There’s another delicious recipe and more on the book coming next week. In the meantime, if you get an opportunity to make this chocolate tiramisu, tell me about it! Happy Saturday to you and HAPPY BAKING!

Chocolate Tiramisu by Wood and Spoon blog. This is a small batch tiramisu recipe made in a loaf pan, switched up with the addition of a chocolate ganache. Mascarpone cheese keeps this dessert true to the Italian classic and crisp ladyfingers soak in kahlua and coffee. Learn how to prepare make-ahead tiramisu on thewoodandspoon.com

If you like this chocolate tiramisu, you should try:

Classic Tiramisu
Tiramisu Cream Puffs
Tiramisu Cake
Kentucky Coffee
Toffee Espresso Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Chocolate Tiramisu

This chocolate tiramisu is a small-batch recipe made in a loaf pan and flavored with the addition of chocolate ganache.

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Total Time: 360
  • Yield: 6 Servings
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (85 gm) semisweet chocolate, chips or chopped
  • ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream, divided 
  • 1 cup (240 gm) warm espresso or strong-brewed coffee
  • 2 tablespoons Kahlua or rum/coffee liquor
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • ¼ cup (50 gm) granulated sugar
  • 8 ounces mascarpone cheese
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1820 ladyfinger cookies (hard or soft is fine)

Instructions

  1. Prepare an 8”x4” loaf pan by lining it both ways with plastic wrap, extending the plastic beyond the sides. Set aside. 
  2. In a small saucepan over low heat, gently heat the chocolate chips and 2 tablespoons of whipping cream, stirring constantly, until melted and smooth. Do not overheat. Once chips are completely melted, remove from heat to a bowl and set in the fridge while you prepare the rest of the elements. 
  3. Combine the espresso and kahlua in a small bowl. Set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar together until thickened and pale, about 2-3 minutes. When a beater or spatula dipped into the mixture is removed it should gradually pour off in a thin, viscous ribbon. Add the mascarpone and beat on low till combined. Stir in the slightly cooled chocolate and cream mixture. Set aside. 
  5. In a separate bowl, beat the remaining heavy whipping cream and vanilla on medium speed to stiff peaks. Fold the whipped cream into the egg yolk mixture until smooth and fluffy, being careful not to overwork. Set it aside.
  6. When you’re ready to assemble the tiramisu, dust the bottom of your prepared pan with a thin layer of cocoa powder. Working quickly and carefully, dip both sides of your lady fingers into the coffee/kahlua mixture and arrange them in a single layer in the bottom of your dusted dish. You want to fill in any larger holes but don’t worry about breaking up your ladyfingers to squeeze them into tiny holes. Spread 1/3 of the cream mixture on top of the lady fingers and dust the cream with another layer of cocoa powder. Repeat your process twice with another layer of ladyfingers, cream, and cocoa powder for a total of three layers. Allow to set up in the fridge for 6 hours for cool removal from the pan. Alternatively, you can prepare this up to a day or two in advance, keeping covered and stored in the fridge. When ready to serve, invert the pan onto a serving platter and peel back the plastic wrap. Dust with additional cocoa powder or grated chocolate if desired and serve slices. 

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag us — we can’t wait to see what you’ve made!