Whole Wheat Cookies Stuffed with Dulce de Leche

Happy New Year!

How were everyone’s holidays?!

I hope that they full of lots of family, friends, love, excitement—now let’s make 2017 even better than last!

Ohh 2016, you were quite a sassy little thing weren’t you, so moody, yet so wonderful. While there were many ups and downs, full of pounds of butter and sugar and chocolate chips, some loss, lots of growth and gain, quite a few running blisters, a wedding, a move, a new puppy, some really tough moments, followed by many unbelievably beautiful ones…I’d say 2016 is a year that will never be forgotten.

But the obvious question here: are y’all big New Year Resolution people?!

I used to be, always the normal “go to the gym more often,” “eat more whole foods,” “be more positive.” But I’ve slowly strayed away from that and moved more into the self-love: respecting yourself and your body, finding happiness, etc. One huge thing that I learned over the last year was that you can’t always control what happens, but you can control how your react to it, which is how I try and stay most centered.

So there. Voilà. My updated life outlook!

Along with that, baking will always be my most relaxing activity…I mean unless you want to include cuddling on the couch the pup and Roberto an activity…

I want this year to include a lot more wild experiments in the kitchen, whether it’s testing a recipe 500 times, or seeing how huge I can make a cookie and what silly thing I can stuff it with next, or how tall I can stack a cake, who knows—there will be no fear this year!

The first recipe of 2017 is a more simple one, slightly healthy (what’s up, whole wheat flour?!), but also packed full of homemade dulce de leche and dipped in chocolate…so nevermind with the H word.

As you know, I get random cravings, then I need to get into the kitchen and just bake until they are satisfied! Remember the caramel corn? All started with my need to go to an amusement park…sometimes I even surprise myself… Anyways! This recipe was exactly that: I wanted something salty dipped in chocolate, and a pretzel or a chip just wouldn’t do! Then it was something like oh, a cookie? But hmm, I bet it would be great stuffed with caramel, so let’s make dulce de leche! But still, hello, where’s the covered-in-chocolate part?! Right, a cookie, with all sorts of chocolate chips, a gooey inside, dipped in milk chocolate, sprinkled with salt, AND SPRINKLES!

Oh. Whole wheat flour for a slightly different taste, texture and maybe added nutrients?! It is the New Year isn’t it?           

It’s always fun to read my ridiculous thoughts, isn’t it? I did happen to bring a test batch of these cookies (that’s 30 of them…) to a relatively intimate NYE party, and they were all eaten! So, if that’s not proof that these are addicting and delicious, go grab a bottle of Champagne, then you’ll definitely be convinced!



Butter (room temperature)—12 oz, or 3 sticks

Brown Sugar—12 oz, or 1 ½ C

White Sugar—4 oz, or ½ C


Vanilla—2 tsp

Baking Soda—1 tsp

Salt—2 tsp

Whole Wheat Flour—17.5 oz, or 3 C

AP Flour—10.25 oz, or 2 C

Chocolate Chips—14 oz, or 2 C

Dulce de Leche—recipe here

Milk Chocolate Chips (melted)—2 cups



In the bowl of your mixer, cream together the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy.

Scrape down the sides of your bowl.

Add in the eggs and vanilla, mix until combined.

In a separate bowl, sift the flours, baking soda and salt.

With the mixer on low, slowly add in the dry ingredients.

Add in your chocolate chips.

Mix until all is combined.

Wrap the cookie dough in plastic wrap and allow to chill for at least an hour or two, until it has firmed up a bit.

While the dough is chilling, you can make your dulce de leche sauce—found here! This will take between 2-3 hours, so it’s a great time to get it done!


When you are ready to bake your cookies, preheat your oven to 350˚F.

By this time, your dough should have firmed up, and your dulce de leche should be finished and cooled.

Make dough balls that are about 1 oz, which is around a tablespoon—this can be eyeballed!

Flatten them out and make them into little “bowls” so that the filling will have a nice place to sit.

Put about a ½ tsp of dulce de leche in the middle.

Take another ball that is the same size, flatten and make another bowl out of it, this will be the top to your filled bottom cookie bowls.

Cover the filling with this second flattened piece, press the edges so that it seals in the dulce de leche, and then gently roll it in your hands so it makes a completely closed cookie dough ball.

This is one!

Do this with the remainder of your cookie dough and filling.

Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through.

It will be hard to tell when they are finished baking due to the color of the whole wheat flour, but they should be completely set on the edges and just slightly underbaked in the centers.

Allow to cool completely before dipping them in chocolate!


To make the chocolate for dipping, make a double boiler and melt about 2 cups of chocolate chips.

When the chocolate is completely melted and smooth, remove from the heat (make sure to wipe the bottom of the bowl to remove any of the warm water!), and dip each cooled cookie about halfway with chocolate.

Before the chocolate sets, sprinkle with just a little bit of salt and some sprinkles for extra color, crunch and excitement!

Whether or not you allow to chocolate to cool and set entirely…


Bon Appétit!

Caramel Stuffed Gingerbread Cookies

Happy Week Before Christmas!!

Now I know that everyone is making gingerbread houses, gingerbread men, ladies and dogs, but how about some stuffed gingerbread cookies?!

Yes. Stuffed I say, and it gets better. How about filling your cookies with lots and lots of caramel? How about some homemade dulce de leche?

Step aside my gingerbread people; you’ve got a new boss in town!

Ever since I was little, my mom would always make absolutely fabulous gingerbread houses, that we would then decorate incredbily hideous—covering them with every color gum drop, candy cane and chocolate—and then eventually give them to the animals a couple of weeks later so that they could, also, get a nice sugar rush. While the stress of building so many houses (now I believe we are at 10 each year!) is rather overwhelming the day before, come Christmas day when it’s time for the, now, Gingerbread House Contest, we all go crazy! One year my brother decorated it completely in cereal squares; my nieces and nephews usually make theirs the most functional; I like to just coat it in spicy cinnamon candy that I’ll later pick at all night as a snack.

The entire thing is a rather fabulous ordeal, and I would never want to give this tradition up for anything! The endless bowls of candy options and both my mom and I hysterical the day before when the roofs keep falling off lead me to keeping these cookies simple—yet packed with a cooked, sugary goodness!

I like to start with a very simple gingerbread cookie dough recipe. There is just the right amount of spiciness in this cookie, not anything too overpowering, so that you can truly taste each and every spice. While I could have coated these in some shiny white icing and glorious decorations, I decided to put that extra sweetness inside of the cookies!

Yes, like actually inside.

As you all know, keeping a jar of easy, homemade dulce de leche sauce in my fridge is as much a staple for me as are butter and eggs. It is oh so quick, and can be used in a multitude of recipes—like my Ginger Apple Cake, or Semifreddo, or even an insanely perfect topping for Apple Crisp!

Anyways, it also bakes just marvelously inside of these gingerbread cookies, adding just enough sweetness without giving anyone a toothache!

Do I sound old or what...

Don’t have dulce de leche? Want to sub caramels instead? Go for it! Homemade or store-bought works just fine—even chocolate fudge can make an excellent filling. Heck, you don’t even have to stuff these cookies, but I know you won’t regret it if you do!

Gingerbread people and houses will forever have a special place in my heart, and my tummy come Christmas night, but these Stuffed Gingerbread Cookies are a new tradition that I’m starting right now!


Butter—8 oz, or 1 C

Brown Sugar—5.5 oz, or ¾ C

Molasses—3.25 oz, or 1/3 C


Vanilla—0.1 oz, or 1 tsp

Flour—18 oz, or 3 2/3 C

Baking Soda—0.25 oz, or 1 ¼ tsp

Salt—0.15 oz, or ½ tsp

Cinnamon—1 tsp

Ginger—¾ tsp

Nutmeg—¾ tsp

Allspice—¼ tsp

Dulce de Leche—1 can, recipe shown here



Cream together the butter and sugar.

Once light and fluffy, add in the molasses.

Add in the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla.

Sift together the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice.

Slowly add in the dry ingredients to your mixer.

Once the dough has formed, wrap it in plastic and allow to chill for about an hour.

When you’re ready to bake the cookies, preheat your oven to 350˚ F.

This is when it gets fun!

These cookies are delightful without a filling, but adding a caramel or dulce de leche brings them to a whole different level.

You may use store bought caramels, this dulce de leche recipe here, nutella, whatever your little tummy desires!

To fill the cookies: take two equal sized pieces of cookie dough (1 oz for me!), and roll into balls.

Take one of them and make into a small bowl, this is where you will put your caramel.

Take the second ball and make it flat, this will be a cover for your bowl.

Pinch the sides together to seal in your filling, roll to make a seamless ball.

Do this until you have used up all of the dough—should make around 15-18 cookies depending on what size you decide to make, as well as how much of the dough you eat!

Put your cookies on a pay that has been sprayed with nonstick spray, about 3x3, because the cookies will get rather large.

Bake for 13-15 minutes.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool for just a few minutes before eating for a gooey center.


Bon Appétit!

Ginger Apple Cake with Dulce de Leche Drizzle


I know that an apple pie is basically a must at any and all fall events, especially at Thanksgiving, but today, I am giving you an addition to an apple pie—a ginger apple bourbon cake. Those three ingredients go together better than a peanut butter & jelly fluffernutter.

Mmm mm mmm.

Come to think of it, I don’t know why all apple pies don’t have the ginger and bourbon in them as well. Although bourbon and I weren’t that great of friends until we met up in Louisville and became besties, now I have the urge to put it in every single thing that I bake with. Whether cookies, cakes, pies, in a glass, we are sort of attached at the hip.

Did I just say that I am best friends with bourbon? I guess it can’t be too far off, seeing as I am basically a cookie in human form—yes, I seem to eat at least a couple a day…

So, when I decided to bake this cake, I figured that I wanted as much flavor as possible, for this to taste more like an apple covered in bourbon and rolled in ginger, which, I believe, is what the final product truly tastes like. By soaking the apples in the alcohol, they really absorb all of the flavor, and then adding the saturated apples as well as remaining liquid into the cake batter, it’s like a delicious punch in the face!

Okay—let’s go for a big hug of flavor instead.

Fresh, minced ginger. Enough said. Covered in some caramel or dulche de leche. I know I have you salivating!

As I sit here and munch on a piece that is bigger than I care to admit, I feel like if I could just hand out a cake to each of my readers, you would be instantly sold and would be saying “this is the bomb”—like Roberto did. Sadly, I can’t see all of you fabulous KBBakers and give out cakes, so you’re going to have to trust my apple-ginger-bourbon trio, knowing that it is to die for, and bake a few cakes yourself!



Granny Smith Apples—2 medium

Butter—6 oz, or 12 TBL

Brown Sugar—3.75 oz, or ½ C

Sugar—2 oz, or ¼ C


Bourbon—0.75 oz, or 2 TBL

Flour—6.25 oz, or 1 ¼ C

Fresh Ginger, minced—0.35 oz, or 1 TBL

Cinnamon—0.2 oz, or 1 tsp



Dice the apples into small cubes.

Combine the diced apples along with the bourbon in a small saucepot.

Put on the heat, bring to a boil, and then turn off the heat, cover and allow to sit until ready to put in your cake batter.

Preheat your oven to 325˚ F.

In the bowl of your mixer, cream the butter and sugars.

Add the eggs.

Once incorporated, add in the sifted flour, cinnamon and minced ginger.

Add in the apples/bourbon mixture.

Only mix until your batter has formed, overmixing will lead to air bubbles in your final product.

Spray a bundt pan with nonstick spray, and then coat with a light layer of flour so that the cake will come out easier after it has baked and cooled.

Pour your batter into the prepared pan.

Bake for 45 minutes, until the cake springs back when touched.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before taking it out of the cake pan.


to make dulche de leche

Fill up a large pot with water and bring to a boil.

Take a can of sweetened condensed milk and remove its label.

Once your pot is boiling, place the can (I like to make at least 2 cans at once, always a great sauce to have on hand!) on its side, making sure that the water is fully covering the can.

If you do not keep the cans covered with water the entire time, there's a chance that the cans will explode from uneven heat!

Allow the cans to simmer for anywhere between 2 hours 30 minutes and 3 hours.

After the time has passed, very carefully remove the cans from the simmering water (oven mitts and tongs!),

Allow them to cool completely before opening.

Once cool, open and use!

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.


Bon Appétit!

Pecan Pie Semifreddo

Is it ice cream? Is it gelato? No, it’s semifreddo!

Oh my goodness, my fellow dessert enthusiasts, I have become every ounce obsessed with this homemade semifreddo. Don’t have an ice cream machine but want something that is 1. Homemade 2. Ice cream and 3. Super tasty?! Look no farther, it is here!

As I continue my streak of Thanksgiving dessert twists, here, I give you a Pecan Pie Semifreddo—which means semi frozen in Italian. The texture in this semifreddo is that of a slightly frozen mousse, and yes, you do put it in the freezer! The combination of heavy cream to sugar to eggs allows for this ridiculously smooth and creamy dessert that melts in your mouth and doesn’t give you a brain freeze.

How is this anything like a pecan pie? Well, listen up, look at that gorgeous crust, it is packed with pecans, butter and, my favorite, brown sugar. While I love pecan pie and all of its sweetness, this crust has just the right amount of sugar so that you will most definitely be reminded of your old favorite.

To make this semifreddo really pop, I swirled in some homemade duche de leche. This brings up the sweetness level yet does not take away from that simple taste of the egg-heavy cream combination that you worked so hard on!

Who knew that one could be so infatuated with a dessert, let alone this play on pecan pie. But, I most certainly am, and I’m not even a little ashamed! Looking to show up that pecan pie this Thanksgiving? Surprise everyone with an even better pie—a semifreddo! Exploding with pecan goodness and a velvety dulce de leche yumminess, I swear, you’ll be passing out the recipe by the end of the night!

crust ingredients

Butter, melted—1.5 oz, or 3 TBL

Graham Cracker Crumbs—2 oz, or ½ C

Brown Sugar—1 oz, or 1/8 C

Pecans, chopped—2 oz, or ½ C


crust process

Preheat the oven to 350˚ F.

Combine all of your ingredients, you want it to have the consistency of wet sand.

Press into the bottom of your pan.

I like to use a tart pan for this. It looks very elegant, and quite pie-like, but using a spring form pan, loaf pan, whatever you choose works just as well!

Bake in the oven for 8 minutes, you will be able to smell the toasting crust.

Remove and allow to cool completely before putting your semifreddo in.


semifreddo ingredients

Heavy Cream—12.5 oz, or 1 ½ C

Sugar—8 oz, or 1 C




semifreddo process

Begin by whipping your heavy cream in your mixer, or by hand, until medium-stiff peaks form. You will know when this has occurred when you lift the whisk and your whipped cream has a slight curl to the end of it.

Reserve your whipped cream in another bowl in the refrigerator.

Wash and dry your mixing bowl.

Combine the sugar, eggs and egg yolks in your mixing bowl.

Place on top of a small saucepot that has been filled with about an inch of water, making sure that it is not directly touching your bowl.

Turn the burner on low and, with a whisk, constantly whip your egg sugar mixture until the sugar has dissolved—this should be around 120˚ F.

Once you have reached this stage, turn off your burner and put the bowl on your mixer with the whisk attachment.

Whip on medium-high until your eggs have turned a pale yellow and have formed ribbons.

To do the “ribbon test”: when you believe that your eggs have been whipped long enough, stop the mixer and dip the whisk attachment into the batter, go back and forth, making a line with the eggs. If they hold for 3-5 seconds without sinking back into your mixture, then you are good to go!

Now, take the whipped cream from the beginning and fold into your whipped eggs.

How to fold in the cream? First, put a small bit of the whipped cream in to temper, mixing quickly with your spatula, next put into about ½ of your remaining cream. As a chef of mine used to say, “12:00, 6:00, give it a quarter turn,” meaning simply that start with your spatula at 12:00 on your bowl, drag down to 6:00, and give the bowl a quarter turn. Do this until all of the cream is mixed in and is homogenous.

Transfer on top of your crust that has been baked and cooler.

Now, you may either put this in the freezer as is to freeze, or, if you want to add a little extra sweetness, mix in some caramel or dulce de leche! Recipe shown here.

I like to swirl in lots of dulce de leche so that I find yummy pockets in each bite!

Once frozen, remove from your pan, slice and serve.


Bon Appétit!