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Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cookies and the Best Christmas Present You Could Give

Recently I posted a list of ideas for Christmas presents. I love giving Christmas presents and think it’s wonderful to give people things that they’ll love. But I also think that it is very important to remember what the real meaning of Christmas is, information pills the real reason we celebrate. Here are some Christmas present ideas that are very meaningful, and will help many people in need this holiday season.

1. Compassion Sponsorship

Compassion International is an amazing organization. Several people in our church work for Compassion and have seen first hand what they do for children living in third world countries. Sponsoring a child costs $38 dollars a month and provides them with food, clothes, education, and spiritual foundation. About a year and a half ago, I started sponsoring a girl who lives in Kenya. She is almost exactly my age and her name is Fresiah. I get letters from her and write her letters. Several times a year (birthdays, Christmas) you can give a little extra to pay for presents. Last year, Fresiah wrote to me, telling me what she bought with the money I sent her. She bought things like clothes, cooking oil, wheat, matches. It was pretty eye-opening to see what she got for Christmas, compared to what I ask for. I would encourage everyone to consider sponsoring a child.

2. Compassion Gift Catalog/Baby Survival Gift

If sponsorship isn’t for you, or you just want to give a one time gift, you can go onto the Compassion website and give a one time donation that will provide prental care, ongoing health care, infant survival training, the support of a local church, and much more for moms and babies. This is an incredible way to help save the lives of both moms and their babies. You can also check out their gift catalog and buy things like vaccinations, African Drought Survival, or a gift that will help a child live until age 5. These are amazing, life-changing gifts.

3. World Vision Gift Catalog

There are many organizations that allow you to buy gifts for families around the world such as goats, chickens, cows, etc. World Vision has a lot of options for giving, all at different prices. You can buy a rabbit, a small gift that will provide a family with food, all the way up to a dairy cow for a woman, a gift that will keep her independent and out of the sex trade. I thought for a long time on what gift I wanted to give and decided on a gift that offers hope for sexually exploited girls. When you give, you can give in honor of someone else and World Vision will send them a card, telling them about the gift. But even cooler than that, you can buy someone you love a present like a bracelet, necklace, silk scarf, or travel mug and coffee, and the money you spend on that gift will go towards helping others in need! Seriously awesome. Go here to check out all the things you can buy :)

4. Northwest Haiti Christian Mission

As many of you know, I went to Haiti last summer on a mission trip (you can read about my experience here, here, here, and here :) I had an incredible time and it really was a life-changing experience. I went to Northwest Haiti Christian Mission and saw first hand the amazing work they do for children and adults. Right now, they are trying to raise enough money to send one million meals to Haiti for the holidays! One meal only costs 5 cents which is crazy. I can personally speak to the work and authenticity of this organization as I have seen it first hand. I would really encourage you to give to help feel people in Haiti. And as an added bonus, anyone who gives enough money to pay for 400 meals (only $20!) will be entered into a drawing for an iPad 2! :)

I hope you guys consider giving to one of these amazing organizations!

You can also make many people happy by giving them these chocolate chip cookie dough cookies :)

I couldn’t decide which mug I liked better so I used this pink one and the red one..what do you think?

These are cookies that taste like cookie dough. Cookie outside, cookie dough inside. Umm yeah. Pretty amazing. These are different than if you make regular chocolate chip cookies and just underbake them a lot. The outside is firm like a regular cookie, but the inside stays gooey and raw. The flavor was delicious and they stay good for several days (just heat them up in the microwave for a few seconds and you have yourself a nice tasty cookie dough cookie!).

I hope you’re having a wonderful week and get to spend a lot of time with loved ones :) Do you have any plans? Any special Christmas traditions? I’d love to hear them! I’ll be sharing more of my Christmas preparations and traditions soon.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 stick butter, softened/room-temp
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix sugars and butter till creamy. Add egg and vanilla and mix till combined.
  4. Mix wet into the dry. Note: it will appear there is not enough liquid for the amount of dry ingredients, but continue mixing. It will form into a dough, it will just be a firm dough. I used my hand to mix it all together.
  5. Gently fold chocolate chips into the dough, without overmixing.
  6. Refrigerate dough for at least 20 minutes before using a small cookie scoop to scoop out dough into small mounds. Roll each mound into a ball and spread evenly on a baking sheet, leaving roughly 2-3 inches between each ball.
  7. Bake balls for 10-14 minutes, depending on how set you want your centers. You can use a thermometer to make sure the centers are 160 degrees F, or you can be daring and dangerous like me.
  8. Let your dough balls rest on the baking sheet to cool at least 5-10 minutes. Or not ;)

Source: The Chic Life
Enjoy!

Christmas Frosted Sugar Cookies

I love my photography class in school. I get to use different equipment (that’s how I get to borrow that macro lens I love so much) and learn about different techniques. One thing I do NOT like, buy however, rx is using strobe lights. I just find them so annoying and restrictive! Not to mention that the ones we have in class randomly decide to not fire when you’re trying to take pictures. Talk about annoying. We are doing a project now on food photography (perfect for me!) and we had to bring in food and props to shoot and use the strobe lighting and diffusers to take the photos. Besides the irritation of the lights not cooperating, I had fun taking my Christmas-themed pictures and they turned out much better than I expected.

I have a confession to make…these are cookies made out of a mix. I know, I’m really ashamed of myself. I’ve never made cookies from a mix before but I had a 7 page essay due the next day and didn’t have time to make cookies from scratch (one of my goals is to make copy-cat Lofthouse cookies..those things are so incredible). These weren’t anything crazy spectacular but they tasted good and looked festive. I gave them to the people in Film Club with me after I shot them in Photography and they seemed to like them :)

I used the cute little snowman mug I got at Goodwill and I think he really stole the show…the cookies really couldn’t compete with him! And the newspaper background is rather random but I think it looked neat. Maybe that’s just me :)

I’m sharing this for the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookie Exchange! While this post doesn’t really require a recipe, you can make these cookies with your kids/siblings/whoeveryouwant and just have fun decorating them. It might be a nice break from labor-intensive baking recipes.

Haha sorry for all the picture, I just thought they were fun!

For these cookies I used this:

Except I didn’t make them into the cookie pop thingies…just plain cookies :) They came out pretty tasty for a kit…if you want something easier that’s fun to decorate, I’d definitely recommend this! I bought my own sprinkles and colored frosting, but they give you colored sprinkles and white frosting in the kit. Happy baking!

And check out all the other bloggers on the cookie exchange. I can’t believe it’s week 8 already!

Gigantic Peanut Butter Candy Cookie…for one

When I was little, apoplectic there were some things grown-ups did that I just did not understand. One thing I remember being so confused about it why they always fought over the check. “No, prescription I’ll pay for it!” “No, really, my treat.” I just didn’t get why they wanted to pay! If someone wanted to pay for me, I wasn’t going to argue. I get it now, but deep down I still don’t like paying for things and if you want to pay for me, go for it! (This doesn’t make me a bad person…right???)

Another thing I just did not understand was why adults would never want to bring dessert home from a party or something like that. They would always say things like “Oh no, we don’t need that around the house.” And I was always like “uhh yes we do! It’s so tasty!” Again, I get it now. But I still like having dessert around the house..because I like dessert.

All those crazy grown-ups out there should appreciate this recipe. It makes just one cookie. That’s it. Don’t worry about all those crazy leftovers!

I am posting this recipe for week 7 of the 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookie Exchange. Week 7??? Christmas is getting so close! I’m so ready to start planning and decorating and celebrating :) I found this recipe on Picky Palate the other day. It’s a recipe that makes one (large) cookie. I’ve been experimenting with some “single-serving” recipes lately. I made cake in a mug the other night! It was really good. I didn’t post about it because the cake exploded out of the cup and looked not-so-pretty and I didn’t want to take a picture of the mess haha. But I will post about it eventually. I like the idea of making desserts that only have one (or a few) servings so I don’t have it around the house for the next week (uh oh. I’m starting to sound like one of those crazy grown-ups).

This cookie turned out great! Chances are you have everything you need to make it at home right now! And it’s a great way to use up some of that Halloween candy. I mixed in Reeses Pieces and pieces of Snickers. Mmm :) Now this cookie is really massive…I probably could have eaten the whole thing myself but I shared with my family. It has a great texture, the outside is crisp and the inside stays gooey. The only issue I had with it was that it turned out really salty. I don’t think it’s a fault in the recipe, though. I was probably being spacey and added too much salt. If I make it again, I’ll let you know if the results were as salty!

I would absolutely recommend that you make this. Make it for yourself and curl up with a warm cookie, some milk, and watch a good movie. That sounds so nice right now :)

Does that huge grease spot freak you out? Oh good. Me either.

Gigantic Peanut Butter Candy Cookie for One

Recipe from Picky Palate <— love all her recipes!

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar

2 tablespoons beaten egg

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 cup Reeses Pieces

3 mini snickers, chopped in 6 pieces each

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, mix together the butter and sugars until well blended.
  3. Crack egg in separate bowl and beat it. Measure out 2 tbs. of the egg and add it to the butter/sugars. Add the vanilla as well and mix well until combined.
  4. Stir in peanut butter and then add flour, soda, and salt. Mix until just blended.
  5. Stir in Reeses pieces and snickers chunks (or whatever other candy makes you happy!)
  6. Scoop all the dough onto the baking sheet in one big giant blob and bake for about 18 minutes (it will look totally raw but will keep cooking a bit after you take it out). Let it cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes.
  7. Enjoy all by yourself when you’re home alone…or share with others :)

Makes 1 super huge cookie

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chunk Cookies


I joined film club at school! I’m really excited about it because I love watching movies and want to be able to be exposed to a lot of different movies. We had our first meeting the other day and watched Memento. I’ve watched that movie three times now and I still get confused! It’s shot in flashbacks and the whole story is told backwards. They use a mixture of black and white and color shots and it’s just really intriguing.

I wanted to make cookies to bring to film club and decided on these delicious peanut butter pretzel chocolate chunk cookies! I may have mentioned before that I’m not really a fan of peanut butter cookies- most of them taste kinda dry to me and I don’t like how most of them are flat. But I found a recipe for puffy peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips on How Sweet it Is and knew I had to try them! I started gathering the ingredients and realized that I didn’t have any chocolate chips but I had a bunch of Dove chocolate I knew I wasn’t going to eat (I love Dove chocolate but I’d rather eat baked goods than plain chocolate), price so I cut them up and used them in these cookies! Then I decided to mix in pretzels to add a salty crunch!

Honestly I think these are some of the best cookies I have ever made which is saying something! They finished baking around 11pm and I was just standing in the kitchen munching on the warm, sildenafil delicious cookies.  The cookie itself was so soft and delicious and the Dove chocolate chunks made it just spectacular. I loved the salt from the pretzels and the crunch it added. I will absolutely make these again! I got great reviews from everyone who had them (I made a ton so I gave a lot away at school). I would totally recommend that you make these. And SOON!

Oh and I took these pictures with a 50mm Canon macro lens I borrowed from my photography class. Oh my goodness! I LOVE this lens! I would absolutely buy it if I had you know…like $300 to spare. But I’m definitely going to be borrowing this a lot this year!

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Recipe from How Sweet It Is 

Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoons baking soda

8 tablespoons of salted butter, melted and cooled

6 tablespoons of creamy peanut butter, melted and cooled

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg + 1 egg yolk, at room temperature

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups chopped Dove chocolate pieces (or chocolate chunks if you don’t have Dove)

1 cup pretzel pieces (use the square waffle pretzels)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Add butter and peanut butter to a microwave safe bowl, and heat in 30 second intervals until melted. Let cool completely.
  2. Unwrap the pieces of Dove chocolate and cut each square into 4 pieces. Break each pretzel into 3-4 pieces each and set both of these aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour and baking soda. In a large bowl, cream together the cooled butter and peanut butter along with the sugars until well combined. Mix in the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla until combined. Gradually add in the flour mixture and mix until dough forms. The dough is really dry so you may need to use your hands to get it completely formed. Stir in the chocolate chunks and pretzel pieces.
  4. Use a 1 tbs. ice cream scoop to form the dough into balls. Place them on a cookie sheet about 2 inches apart and bake for 10-11 minutes (keep them soft!)
  5. Let them cool completely and enjoy! Or stuff hot, gooey cookies into your mouth and imagine you’re in heaven :)

Note: The original recipe says it makes 18 cookies. But I got about 24. It just depends on the size you make them.

Insane Crazy Ridiculous Chocolate Chip Cookie Oreo Brownies

My sister Celina’s birthday is my excuse to bake insane, diabetes and pregnancy over-the-top cakes (like the Oreo Cake I made for her this last year). My boyfriend is my excuse to bake ridiculously decadent desserts (like the Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies). I feel like I’m sensing a pattern here…all my insane desserts include Oreos. And this one is no different!

On Sunday, my boyfriend and I celebrated our 2 year anniversary :) I can’t believe it’s been 2 years already! That just blows my mind. I am so incredibly luchy to have him as a boyfriend, he is seriously the sweetest guy ever. I drove to see him at college and we went out to the movies and saw The Lion King! While it’s not my favorite movie anymore, it was when I was little and it’s his, too. I’m excited I got to see it in theaters! I forgot how much I love the music and the story and everything! After the movie, we went to J. Alexander’s for dinner. I loooovve this restaurant! We got the spinach queso as an appetizer which I absolutely love. I got the French Dip for dinner which is good but I think it’s just too much meat for me- I prefer their rattlesnake pasta or one of their salads. For dessert we shared the Best Ever Chocolate Cake, which seriously just may be the best ever. It’s a chocolate bunt cake with lots of hot fudge and a huge scoop of ice cream. I would go to this restaurant just for this cake. Seriously. (I actually found a copy-cat recipe and want to try it soon! I just have to get a bunt pan first). I had a great time on our date!

For his present, I knew I was going to bake him something. I made the Oreo Stuffed Cookies for his birthday about a month ago and he seriously loved them. He has been bugging me to make them ever since. I was going to make them for our anniversary but I have so many recipes saved that I want to make and I wanted to try something new…so I decided to make chocolate chip cookie oreo brownies, or Ultimate Brownies as Amanda from Kevin and Amanda calls them. These brownie-cookie-bar things looked incredibly good but I was worried that baking the cookie dough and brownie layer together would result in a dry, not gooey layers. I was worried for nothing! Every layer of this creation was perfect- the chocolate chip cookie dough one is probably my favorite! The oreos got all soft and delicious and the brownies were gooey perfection.

So what’s the verdict? Are these better than the Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies? My mom and boyfriend both liked the brownies but thought the cookies were better. Celina liked the brownies. I loved them both and I think the one I favor depends on my mood. I think if you eat the brownies, you have to eat them warm with vanilla ice cream. I’ve been having that for dessert and it is just delicious! However, I think in the future I’ll use regular stuffed Oreos because the double stuffed ones make it a little bit too sweet. And you know it’s sweet if I’m saying that!

First, make up a batch of chocolate chip cookie dough. Proceed to eat massive quantities of raw dough.

Line a 9 by 13in baking pan with parchment paper that’s been sprayed with Pam. Put the cookie dough in the pan and lick the bowl clean.

This is when I started to realize how ridiculous this dessert was.

But we’re not done yet!

Mmhhmm that’s right. Make up a big batch of brownies!

Pour it over the cookie dough and oreos and then eat a bunch of brownie batter.

Put it in the oven and, while it’s baking, take an extra oreo and put some cookie dough on it, drizzle it with brownie batter, and eat it. Not that I did that. And I certainly didn’t do that twice.

And enjoy! (Amanda’s picture looks much prettier than this…I suppose I should try a little harder to take pretty pictures of my final product but it’s hard to do when I’m so busy eating it!)

Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie-Oreo-Fudge Brownie Bar

Recipe from Kevin and Amanda

Ingredients:

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups (12 ounces) milk chocolate chips
1 package Oreos (I would do regular stuffed but go for double stuffed if you like things incredibly sweet!)
1 Family Size (9×13) Brownie mix
1/4 cup hot fudge topping (I didn’t use this because we didn’t have any hot fudge. I don’t think you really need it but I’m sure it’s great with it, too!)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line a 9 by 13 in baking pan with parchment paper that has been generously sprayed with Pam.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and both sugars with a mixer on medium speed for 3-5 minutes. Then add the eggs and vanilla and beat to combine.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda, and salt together. Gradually beat the flour mixture to the butter mixture until just incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips (with a wooden spoon).
  4. Spread the cookie dough out in your prepared pan and top with a layer of Oreos.
  5. Prepare the brownie mix according to the directions on the box, adding the 1/4 cup of hot fudge if you so desire.
  6.  Mix together brownie mix, adding an optional 1/4 cup of hot fudge topping to the mix if you so desire. Pour the brownie batter over the cookie dough and Oreos.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees F for 45-55 minutes.

This recipe made an INSANE amount of brownies! I gave about half of them to my boyfriend and my family still had a ton left over. You can halve this recipe, using an 8 by 8 brownie mix and half the cookie dough. Or you can make the full amount and give some away to some very happy people!

Enjoy!

I shared this on Sweet as a Sugar Cookie :)

 

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