Perk Me Up Smoothie

I was given Barleans Greens Chocolate Silk Powder to create a recipe #Choctoberfest2017. Barleans makes healthy and nutritious products that are delicious. This Perk Me Up Smoothie has antioxidants from fruits and vegetables from the Barleans and protein from the Greek yogurt I used. This is one healthy coffee smoothie.


Coffee Ice Cubes, I froze one cup of coffee in an ice cube tray the night before

1 8 ounce plain or vanilla Greek or regular yogurt

1 scoop of Barleans Green Chocolate Silk Powder 

1/4 – 1/2 cup whole, low fat, almond, soy, coffee creamer, whatever you prefer

Strawberry for garnish, optional

Place ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. You may add more liquid if your smoothie is too thick. This is my new replacement meal in the morning. It has everything, coffee, antioxidants from fruit and vegetables, chocolate and protein. It was my pleasure to work with Barleans again.

Copycat Salted Caramel Cafe

After the hustle and bustle of shopping and preparing holiday meals, why not treat yourself to a holiday cocktail?!  This cocktail can be purchased at Tampa’s Hard Rock Cafe but now you can make one for yourself in the comfort of your own home. This could give Irish Coffee a run for the money. It’s like a caramel coffee drink that people order at the high end coffee shop with a kick!  This drink is very tasty. 


Cast of characters. 

1 shot of Tia Maria

1 shot of Bailey’s  Irish Cream

5 ounces of Half and Half

3 ounces of Salted Caramel Syrup (I used Monin that I purchased from Amazon)

Whip cream for garnish

Caramel ice cream syrup

Caramel corn, optional

I used a glass that is often used for Irish Coffee. Tia Maria is like a coffee liqueur. Add the shots of Tia Maria and Bailey’s to your glass. Add half and half and caramel syrup. Stir to mix. Top with whip cream, drizzle with caramel syrup and top with caramel corn.  Cheers!

*please remember to drink responsibly

Breakfast Brownies

Breakfast Brownies you ask…well they contain chocolate, espresso and bacon! Sounds like a great breakfast to me! Best brownies I have ever made. These brownies are to be enjoyed anytime of the day!

1 pound unsalted butter
1 pound plus 12 ounces of semisweet chocolate chips
6 ounces of unsweetened chocolate, I used Bakers
6 jumbo eggs
3 tablespoons of espresso powder or instant coffee granules, I used instant coffee
3 Tablespoons of pure vanilla, I used Mexican
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups of chopped walnuts, optional
1 1/2 pounds of thick sliced bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled*

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare a 12 x 16 pan with a spray of shortening and flour like Bakers Joy or use butter and flour.

In a medium bowl, melt butter, one pound of chocolate chips and unsweetened chocolate in microwave. Check at one minute intervals and stir. Cool slightly. In a large bowl, stir (do not beat) together eggs, coffee or espresso granules, vanilla and sugar. Stir the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and cool to room temperature.

In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 cup of flour, baking powder and salt. Toss with cooled chocolate mixture. In a separate bowl, toss bacon, chocolate chips and walnuts in remaining 1/4 cup flour. Add to the chocolate batter and pour into the baking pan.

Bake for 20 minutes, tap the side of the pan to the wall of your oven to let any air escape. Bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Do not overbake. Cool thoroughly and refrigerate. Cut into big pieces. 😃

*I cooked my bacon in the microwave with several sheets of paper towels on the bottom of a large plate. Cover the top with one sheet of paper towel and cook about one minute 20 seconds per piece of bacon. You want your bacon crisp and cooking it in the microwave, wicks away the fat and grease. Use 2 pounds of bacon for a bolder taste of bacon.

Adapted from Ina Garten.



Iced Mocha Latte Chocolate Cake

If you know me personally, you know I love, love, love coffee. If you like or love coffee, you will not be disappointed. ☕️☕️☕️☕️☕️

2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 stick of butter, room temperature
1 cup of brown sugar, packed
1 cup of granulated sugar
3 eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup of buttermilk
2 teaspoons of vanilla (I used Mexican)
4 squares of unsweetened chocolate, melted
1 cup of hot brewed espresso*

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two 9 inch cake pans with parchment paper. Grease pans and parchment and dust with unsweetened cocoa powder.

Combine flour, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to combine and aerate. Set aside.

Beat sugars and butter until light and fluffy at medium speed. Add eggs one at a time and mix well. Add buttermilk, vanilla and melted chocolate. Beat until combined. Alternate flour mixture and espresso mixing well after each addition. Pour evenly into prepared pans.

Bake for 35 minutes or until done. Cool on wire racks until room temperature. Frost.

*you can substitute 1 tablespoon of instant coffee mixed in very hot water in place of espresso.

Creamy Espresso Frosting:
2 1/2 sticks of butter, room temperature
1 8 ounce block of cream cheese
2 tablespoons of vanilla
3 tablespoons of very cold espresso
1 teaspoon of salt
2 pounds of powdered sugar
Chocolate covered espresso beans, optional

Cream cheese and butter together until combined. Add vanilla and espresso and mix until combined. Add salt. Slowly add powdered sugar and scrape down sides of mixer. Frost and store cake in refrigerator. Enjoy! ☕️