“Baked” cinnamon apple for one

I love fall. The changing weather, the festive decorations, and the amazing food are all things that make me so in love with this season. I try and take full advantage of all of it while it lasts so cooking with pumpkins and apples definitely makes my “to do” list!

Baked apples are such a great dessert that can be really figure friendly if you make it right. This recipe is super “skinny” but definitely super delicious! I think it has just become one of my favorite desserts! It is so easy and I know you all will love it!!

Ingredients

1/2 honeycrisp apple, cored
1 Tbl brown sugar, packed
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 Tbl granola (mine was a maple, walnut, and chia seed flavor)
Vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt

In a microwave safe bowl, place apple cut side up and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Place in the microwave for 2 minutes (I ended up cutting my apple up into pieces so it would cook faster). Remove from microwave and top with granola and ice cream.

Enjoy!!

2 ingredient brownies and pumpkin pie frosting

This is literally the EASIEST brownie recipe ever.

I’m just going to go ahead and say you’re welcome in advance.

I also just want to go ahead and tell you that these brownies are not like “normal” brownies. They are definitely fudgey and extra definitely delicious, BUT their texture is slightly different. I promise you though, once you try these you will be amazed at how great they are!

These brownies are also super healthy!! The pumpkin replaces the oil and egg that you would normally put into the brownie mix which makes these a great go-to healthier brownie recipe!!!

Ingredients

1 box of brownie mix (I used Duncan Hines)
1 15 oz can of pumpkin

Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9×9 pan.

Combine brownie mix and pumpkin and mix until combined. Pour into pan. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until set. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

At this point, you can frost these with this amazing pumpkin pie frosting I made, or you can leave them plain. Either way is extra delicious (but this frosting is pretty darn tasty).

1 box sugar free/fat free instant vanilla pudding mix
3/4 cup milk (I used almond)
1/2 container of sugar free Cool Whip
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Combine milk and pudding and whisk until thickened. Fold in Cool Whip, pumpkin, and pumpkin pie spice. Refrigerate for an hour.

Skinny peanut butter and chocolate cheesecakes

Cheesecake!!

My guilty pleasure just got a little less guilty and whole lot more pleasurable! These little suckers are super low calorie (only 110 calories each!!) but taste like they could be made with all full fat ingredients!

This recipe is so versatile too! If you don’t like peanut butter, you can definitely substitute lemon juice or melted chocolate (or whatever!!) to make it to your liking.

Ingredients
11 chocolate wafer cookies, crushed
8 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese
6 oz non-fat Greek yogurt (I used plain, but vanilla will work too)
1/4 cup sugar (I used Truvia, but any sugar you like will be fine)
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg
1 Tbl flour
3 Tbl PB2 (if you can’t find this, regular peanut butter will work – just use 2 Tbl)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners and add 1 Tablespoon of the crushed cookies to each cupcake liner. With a spoon or your fingers, pack crumbs down to form a crust.

In a bowl, mix together cream cheese and sugar with an electric mixer until smooth. Add in yogurt, vanilla and egg and blend until combined. Mix in flour and PB2 just until combined. Be careful not to over mix at this point. Spoon mixture into cupcake pan. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Refrigerate for a few hours.

Enjoy!

Blueberry and brie crostata

Some food combinations were just meant to be together; peanut butter and jelly, bacon and eggs, coconut and Brussels sprouts. Oh wait. Is that last one just me? Blueberry and brie cheese might not sound like a food pairing you would think to try right away, but this crostata is borderline life changing.

I have always enjoyed the classic baked brie with apricot preserves wrapped in a buttery and flakey puff pastry and baked until a golden, gooey, delicious mess. But I had never considered turning that delectable appetizer into an elegant dessert, until now. I recently stumbled upon this recipe and thought, “Yes, this sounds intriguing. I shall make this now.” Oh, and I made it. Three times. In a row. This dessert is so delicious. Sweet, but savory. Fruity, but creamy. Rustic, but elegant. All the things in a dessert that I love and so much more.

The crust for this dessert is a very basic, but always-delicious pastry crust. The filling is equally simple. Once the crust is rolled out and the brie is layered in the middle ever so gently, blueberries mixed with sugar, lemon, and cornstarch are place upon it. It is then baked in the oven until golden-brown and oozing with a cheesy, fruity mess. A beautiful mess.

Ingredients
Adapted from Perry’s Plate

Crust

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

2 Tbl sugar

Zest from one lemon

1/8 tsp salt

10 Tbl butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces and chilled

3 Tbl ice water

Directions

In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together flour, sugar, lemon zest and salt until combined.
Add in the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.
One tablespoon at a time, add in ice water until dough begins to form.
Remove from food processor and gather into a disk.
Cover in plasic wrap and allow to chill in the refigerator for at least one hour.

Filling

1 pint of blueberries

6 oz. brie cheese, sliced into thin slices

Juice from one lemon

2 Tbl sugar

1 Tbl cornstarch

1 egg, beaten

1 Tbl raw sugar

Directions

Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.
In a bowl, combine blueberries, sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice. Set aside.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll into a circle about 1/4 inch thick.
Lay slices of brie in the middle of the cidle, leaving a 1 inch boarder.
Pour blueberry mixture over top of the cheese and gently start to fold the outside edges of the dough around the filling.
Brush the outside dough with the beaten egg and sprinkle the crust with the raw sugar.
Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes. Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes.

Enjoy!

Very berry crumble

Nothing screams spring time louder than a big bowl of fresh berries. And nothing tastes as great either. The weather in NC has been so beautiful lately so I have been taking full advantage of all the amazing produce that our grocery stores have been providing. I could not pass up buying fresh raspberries, blueberries, blackberries and strawberries a few days ago – but berries go bad so quickly that I figured I’d better use them while they are still fresh.

By the way, since when is a half pint of blueberries $5??? I need a better job. Oh wait, I need an actual job.

Anyways, this crumble is a great way to use up some berries in a very delicious way. It is another very simple preparation with an amazing turnout. I usually bake my crumbles in a 9×13 baking dish, but my baking dish was being used to house my spinach artichoke dip (posting later on). So, I baked these little suckers in muffin tins. They were more like individual crumbles. But if you are anything like me – three crumbles was one serving size 😉 . Oh well. It’s fruit so it must be healthy. Right?

Ingredients

4 cups of your favorite mixed berries (I used blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries)
2 Tbl brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp ground cinnamon

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Place filling into a baking dish or muffin tins. Set aside.

Crumble topping
1 cup quick cooking oats
4 Tbl butter
2 Tbl whole wheat flour
1 Tbl granulated sugar
2 Tbl brown sugar

In a microwave safe bowl, melt butter. Combine all ingredients until crumbly. Mixture should have the consistency of wet sand. If you mixture seems a little dry, add a tablespoon more of butter. Pour crumble over top of the berry mixture and lightly pat down.

Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until filling is bubbly and topping is slightly browned. Serve with or without ice cream.

Enjoy!!