Grain Free Dairy Free Red Velvet Cupcakes

by kristen massad on October 18, 2014

  ll6There are many reasons I love that I am pastry chef, but one of the main reasons is that you get to help celebrate all the wonderful events going on in someone’s life.   A few weeks ago, when I was asked to create a dessert for the 2nd birthday of Loubies and Lulu’s, I felt very honored, but I also felt the pressure to come up with a special dessert that encompassed everything Loubies and Lulus is about.  With two dessert options for the party, I chose one of my favorite clean sweets, Coconut Banana Chia Pudding and  Drea challenged me to create one of her favorite desserts, a healthy version of the very popular red velvet cupcake. This was a fun one for me to play around with and I was able to create a delicious and moist grain free and dairy free cupcake for her event. I have used some of my favorite ingredients for this clean sweet and everything that can be found in your local natural grocery store; almond flour, coconut oil, and coconut sugar. I hope you enjoy this recipe and I want to congratulate Loubies and Lulu’s for a wonderful two years of blogging!ll3  

Grain Free Dairy Free Red Velvet Cupcakes
Yields 12
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Red Velvet Cake
2 ¼ Cups Almond Flour
1-Cup Coconut Sugar
1 tsp Baking Soda
½ tsp Salt
2-½ Tbsp Cocoa Powder
½ Cup Coconut Oil, melted
½ Cup Coconut Milk
2 Eggs
1 tsp Red Food Color, Natural
1 tsp White Vinegar
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
Honey Meringue
2 large Egg Whites
½ cup Honey
1 tsp Ice Water
Red Velvet Cake
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line cupcake pans with paper cups.
2. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until combined and batter looks smooth.
3. Scoop batter into cupcake papers, filling them half way.
4. Bake cupcakes for 25-30 minutes, rotating them at 15 minutes.
5. Allow cupcakes to cool completely before piping the honey meringue icing.
(if you are not eating the cupcakes the same day, store them in an airtight container and ice with meringue when ready to serve)
Honey Meringue
1. Bring 2 inches of water to a simmer in a saucepan.
2. In a heatproof bowl, combine egg whites and honey
3. Place the bowl with egg whites over the simmering water and whisk consistently until they are warm to the touch.
4. Remove the bowl from the heat and transfer to mixing bowl that attaches to your mixer
5. With the whisk attachment, start whipping your egg whites and honey on high
6. Add the teaspoon of water to your egg white and whisk until thick and glossy
7. Once cupcakes are cooled and ready to serve, pipe the meringue onto the cupcakes
8. Using a kitchen torch, lightly brown the meringue
9. Refrigerate if you are not serving them immediately
Makes 12 regular size cupcakes or 24 mini cupcakes
INK foods : In Nanny's Kitchen


Pumpkin Spice Whoopie Pie

by kristen massad on October 7, 2014

SONY DSCPumpkin season is in full swing and I know we all have our favorite pumpkin recipes, but this cookie is perfection and must be added to your fall baking!  Soft and cake like, they have the right amount of sweet and spice that brings your right into the wonderful flavors of fall.  Once you get past the pumpkin, you will enter into a marshmallow cream filling with a dash of cinnamon…like I said, Perfection! Enjoy!SONY DSCSONY DSCSONY DSC

Pumpkin Spice Whoopie Pies
Yields 36
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2 2/3 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 1/4 tsp Salt
1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon, Ground
1 1/4 tsp Ginger, Ground
3/4 tsp Nutmeg, Ground
3/4 Cup Butter, Unsalted
2 1/4 Cups Brown Sugar
2 Eggs
1 1/2 Cups Pumpkin Puree
3/4 Cup Evaporated Milk
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Prepare sheet pan with parchment paper
Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg
Cream butter and sugar together with paddle
Mix in eggs, one at a time
Add pumpkin puree, evaporated milk and vanilla to butter mixture
Slowly add flour mixture until combined
Pipe or scoop batter into 1 1/2" rounds (leave room between, they will spread)
Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes or until the cookie springs back when touched
Allow cookies to cool completely before filling with Marshmallow Cream (recipe below)
Serve immediately or store in air tight container
INK foods : In Nanny's Kitchen
Marshmallow Cream Filling
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1 Cup (2 sticks) Butter, Unsalted
1 Cup Confectioners Sugar
1 (17oz) Jar of Marshmallow Fluff
1 tsp Cinnamon
In a bowl with paddle attachment, combine butter and sugar, mix until combined and creamy
Add marshmallow fluff and cinnamon, mix completely
Pipe filling into cooled Pumpkin Spice Whoopie Pies and sandwich two halves together
INK foods : In Nanny's Kitchen


Halloween Treat Roundup

by kristen massad on September 29, 2014

halloween treatsHalloween is hands down one of the sweetest holidays of the year and truly one of the best times to bring out your creative sides. Sweet treats, healthy snacks, fizzy drinks and the cutest packaging around will top off any Halloween party you have planned this year and we have a list to help you get started.

 1)   Witches Stew

There is absolutely nothing fancy about this recipe…actually there is no recipe!  This is the perfect blend of anything your have in your pantry that will satisfy the hungry witches in your family! Check out Ink Food Witches Stew for what we love in our stew.

2)   Cookie Critter Pops

Making these cookie critters for any party will surely spook your guests, but what is there not to love about Oreos, dipped in chocolate and decorated; maybe not so creepy after all! Check out instructions at Ink Foods for Cookie Critter Pops

3)   Candy Corn Pretzel Sticks

Old fashion candy corn is a childhood favorite, but with a month full of sugar, you might want to throw something salty in the mix. Candy corn pretzel sticks are perfect just the way they are or packed for the sweetest gifts. Candy Corn Pretzel Sticks by Ink Foods

4)   Tangerine Pumpkins & Banana Ghosts

Halloween gives everyone the excuse to eat endless amounts of candy. Throw in a healthy twist with these cute tangerine pumpkins and bananas ghosts for any school party and the kids will never miss the sugar. Recipe here Weelicious Tangerine Pumpkins and Banana Ghosts

5)   Marshmallow Apple Chompers

The kids will be all smiles with marshmallow apple chompers. This recipe will make the perfect DIY for the whole family. Marshmallow Chompers by Lindsay Weiss on Baby Center Blog

6)   Halloween Watermelon Punch

There are sure to be thirsty monsters roaming around your house during Halloween. This Frankenstein green watermelon punch will quench your thirst. Drink up! Halloween Watermelon Punch by Design Eat Repeat

7)   Fizzy Pumpkin Punch

Fizzy pumpkin punch will make you think you are eating something sugary sweet. Mixed with orange juice, lemon lime soda, pineapple juice and orange sorbet, you might skip out on the candy and just sip on this. Pumpkin Punch by House of Smith

8)   DIY Broom Bags

So many wonderful treats need the perfect packaging. Martha Stewart does it again with these Witches Broom Favor bags created with paper lunch bags. So simple and you probably have all the supplies at home. Broom Bags by Martha Stewart


Have a sugary sweet happy Halloween!


Peanut Butter Cereal Treats

by kristen massad on September 4, 2014

SONY DSCThe summer is over, school is back and I am finally get my act together.  It was a crazy and fun summer with a love hate for no routine and just go with the flow, some days I loved it and some days…well lets just say its a wild ride:)  Although I have done quite a bit of baking, it has been a challenge to share the recipes with you after longs days of fun in the sun.  So, hopefully I am back and can keep you up to date on my new creations.  SONY DSCHere is a recipe that couldn’t be missed.  This was a Labor Day BBQ dessert that was kind of made up with ingredients I had in my pantry and it came out perfect.  These perfectly round adorable cereal bites are called Kix.  If you haven’t heard of them and you have kids, GO get them, we are addicted (“We” as in the kids and I).  Kix, peanut butter, marshmallows and peanut butter cups make up this reinvented rice crispy treat.  I loved them and so did the whole family and technically these peanut buttery cereal treats can be eaten at breakfast or dessert!SONY DSC

Peanut Butter Cereal Treats
Yields 16
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6 cups Kix Cereal
6 cups Marshmallows
4 Tbsp Butter, Unsalted
1/2 cup Peanut Butter, Creamy
1/2 cup peanut butter cups, mini or regular chopped
Prepare a 9x9 pan lined with parchment paper
Melt the butter and marshmallows in a large pot
Once the marshmallows are just melted, turn off the heat and stir in the peanut butter
Add the cereal to the mixture and stir to coat all the cereal in the marshmallow mixture
Add 1/2 the amount of peanut butter cups and stir to combine (most will probably melt)
Pour into prepared pan and spread using a greased spatuala until even
Sprinkle the top with the remaining peanut butter cups
Allow the bars to cool completely before cutting and serving
INK foods : In Nanny's Kitchen
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Back to School Snacks

by kristen massad on August 25, 2014

back to school

For the start of a new school year, we are bringing back some of our favorite old school snacks! These can be homemade, portable and perfect for any lunch box or afternoon snack!  

 Back to the Basics-The Fudge Brownie

Nothing is better than the perfect fudge brownie with a crispy glossy top, treat yourself while getting back into the school year routine (recipe below)

 A Power Packed Bite-Cherry Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Balls

This simple, easy and no bake breakfast or snack is perfect for on the go (recipe)

 Roll it up with all natural flavors-Peach Mango Fruit Leather

Fruit leather is a clean eating snack and will give you that perfect midday sugar boost without all the sugar! (recipe)

Fudge Brownie
Yields 16
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8 Tbsp Butter (1 stick)
1-Cup Semisweet Chocolate Chips
1-Cup Granulated Sugar
3 Eggs
½ tsp Salt
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1-Cup All purpose Flour
2 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
2. Line 8x8” pan with parchment paper
3. Melt butter and chocolate in a large bowl over boiling water and heat until just melted
4. Whisk eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla extract in a large bowl until light and fluffy
5. Add melted butter and chocolate mixture into egg mixture
6. Slowly add flour and cocoa powder
7. Mix until just combined, make sure batter is smooth
8. Pour batter into 8x8” pan
9. Bake for 25-30 minutes (avoid over baking so the center stays fudgy)
10. Let brownies cool in the pan
11. Cut into 16 2” squares
12. Serve or store in airtight container
INK foods : In Nanny's Kitchen
Happy back to school!