Brownie Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies {Levian Bakery Style}

The Levian Bakery is located in New York City. The bakery is famous for their ginormous cookies that are served fresh out of the oven.  I’ve never been there myself, but I’ve made copycat recipes for their cookies quite a few times and … they’re pretty amazing.

The Levian Bakery cookies weigh a whopping 6 oz.! That is a huge cookie, but I love that about them… it’s so extra.

I wanted to make a even more outrageous cookie and stuff an already 6 oz. cookie with a brownie, because………why not?!

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Here’s My Notes:

1)The key to these cookies are to under-bake the brownies and the cookies. If that’s not your thing this probably isn’t the cookie for you.

2)I just used a boxed brownie mix, if you want to make a homemade brownie…go for it.

3)I’ve tried chilling the cookies before baking them and no chilling at all. Honestly, I think it’s worth it to chill the cookies before baking. They hold their shape way better and don’t spread, which means a more gooey center…which is exactly what you want for this recipe.

3)I suggest a darker chocolate for these cookies, I used a mixture of semi-sweet chocolate chips and chopped dark chocolate.

4)These cookies the next day are not as good as when they’re fresh. An easy fix is to pop it in the microwave for about 15 seconds…I promise it tastes like it’s fresh out of the oven.

5)My cookies tip the scale at 8 ounces and I enjoyed mine with a cup of coffee, but a glass of milk is always a good idea with a warm chocolate chip cookie. Btw I had no problem at all with eating a whole cookie.

6)If you don’t have bread flour, it’s no big deal. I have made these cookies with just all-purpose flour. However, the bread flour does make the cookie more tender and ultra soft. Also, I do weigh my flour and sugar out on a scale, but feel free to just measure it with measuring cups.

Brownie Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies {Levian Bakery Style}

Yields: 8 (8oz.) cookies

Ingredients:

•1 boxed brownie mix, baked according to package directions (I baked mine for just 25 minutes     to get a gooey texture)

•3 cups (13.5 ounces) bread flour

•1 teaspoon baking powder

•1/4 teaspoon baking soda

•3/4 teaspoon salt

•1 cup butter, room temperature

•3/4 cup + 4 teaspoons (6 ounces) brown sugar

•1/2 cup sugar

•2 eggs

•1 teaspoon vanilla

•8 ounces chocolate, I used a mixture of semi-sweet chocolate chips & chopped dark chocolate

Ingredients:

Bake the brownie mix according to package directions in an 8×8 pan. Allow them to cool completely, cut the brownies into 25 squares (5 by 5 rows).

Line two baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.

In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Using a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugars for about 1-2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs and vanilla; beat until fully incorporated. Then, add in the dry ingredients. With a rubber spatula mix in the chocolate.

Scoop the cookie dough with a 1.5 Tablespoons cookie scoop.  Place six scoops of dough on a cookie sheet. Flatten out the dough with your hand. Take a brownie square and place it in the center of the cookie dough. With the remaining cookie dough in the mixing bowl, use your fingers to cover the brownie squares on each cookie. This can be messy and imperfect, but you can do it! Put the baking sheets in the fridge for 1 hour or 30 minutes in the freezer.

Once the cookies have chilled, bake them at 350 degrees F. for 20 minutes. Allow the cookies to cool for about 5 minutes before removing them to a cooling rack . Enjoy !

This recipe was adapted from HERE

♥ Other copycat recipes to check out:

Decadent Brownies with Raspberry Sauce {A Bonefish Grill Copycat}

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Caramel Pecan Cinnamon Roll Cups {A Cinnabon Copycat}

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Check out my Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe:

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The Easiest Dessert Ever!

Sweet cheesecake filling sandwiched between crescent rolls & topped generously with cinnamon sugar.


I couldn’t stop eating these delicious squares the first time I had them. The crunchy, sweet topping had me hooked. I was shocked at how easy they were to prepare, but you know….sometimes simple is best. 


I like to serve these with strawberry jam…the combination is amazing.  P.S. It makes the best breakfast or brunch.



Here’s My Notes:

1)I bake the first layer of crescent rolls, because I want to insure that it doesn’t end up being raw on the bottom. You can skip this step if you like. 

The Easiest Dessert Ever 

Yields: 1 9×13 baking pan; approximately 20 squares 

Ingredients:

2 (8oz.) packages refrigerated crescent rolls 

2 (8oz.) packages cream cheese, room temperature 

1 cup sugar 

1 teaspoon vanilla 

1/4 cup butter, melted 

1 Tablespoon cinnamon 

4 Tablespoons sugar 

🍓 Strawberry Jam
Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 

Spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. 

In a large mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese and sugar for 2-3 minutes or until light and fluffy.

Press one of the packages of crescent rolls into the prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 6-7 minutes. Remove from oven and then evenly spread the cream cheese mixture over the crust. Use the other can to cover the top. Mix the cinnamon and sugar together. Then, brush the butter evenly over the top and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. 

Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Allow to cool for about an hour before cutting. I like to put mine in the fridge to chill…..they’re amazing with strawberry jam. Enjoy !

Check out this recipe:

Fresh Strawberry Jam {A Strawberry Summer Recipe #1}

Sweet & Salty Marshmallow Treats 

I wanted to transform some not-so-exciting organic honey nut cereal (that I bought on sale) into something amazing … I knew exactly how I would do it. 

Instead of using rice krispie cereal to make traditional marshmallow treats, I used the honey nut cereal. I also substituted 1/2 of the cereal for crushed potato chips for a salty & sweet version of a classic treat. I must warn you though….these are addictive! And with the white chocolate drizzle…. they’re even more enticing!

Here’s My Notes:

1)I wanted my treats to be thick, instead of using a 9×13-inch baking pan, I used a 8-inch square pan.

2)I can’t emphasize enough how simple these are to make.  The sprinkles are perfect for a kid’s birthday party. 

Sweet & Salty Marshmallow Treats 

Yields: 16 marshmallow treat triangles 

Ingredients

3 Tablespoons butter 

1 (16oz.) package mini marshmallows 

3 cups honey nut cereal 

3 cups potato chips, crushed 

White chocolate chips, melted 

Sprinkles 

Directions 

In a large pot over medium heat, melt butter. Add in mini marshmallows, and stir until completely melted. Remove from heat and immediately stir in the cereal and crushed chips. Press firmly into a baking pan.  Cool completely, about 15 minutes, before cutting into bars.

Assembly 

With a fork, simply drizzle the white chocolate over each bar and decorate with the sprinkles. These are best eaten the same day.  Store the leftovers in a plastic bag. 

Enjoy ! 

                                                          


Homemade Granola Bars {Healthy Breakfast On The Go}

Granola bars are the perfect quick breakfast to just grab and head out the door. They’re also super easy to give to kids for a healthy afternoon snack. But my only problem with store bought granola bars is that after an hour of eating them…..I’m hungry again!

I wanted an easy to make + satisfying + healthy homemade granola bar. The ingredients are simple. They are probably ingredients you already have in your pantry.  And, most importantly, they are satisfying…finally. They’re great to have before you work out, which is the way I prefer, but if you like to have a post-work out snack, this is an excellent go- to. I  also like these for breakfast with a cup of coffee, it will keep me full for almost three hours….a miracle.

I wrapped some of these bars up for my friends to try out. I cut strips of parchment paper and tied them up with a little twine. They all loved them! One  is a runner, and said she enjoyed it for a pre-workout snack. It also kept her full for a good two hours. If you’re looking for a good, healthy snack, or a quick breakfast,  I’ve got you covered!

Here’s My Notes:
1)I used coconut, sliced almonds, & dried cranberries. Use whatever combination of dried fruit and nuts you like… pecans, raisins, dried dates, dried apricots, walnuts…just make sure everything is chopped up and stick to the measurements. If you put extra, the bars will not hold their shape, and will fall apart.

2)To store…. I placed cut up bars in a plastic bag and stored at room temperature.

3)If you want to cut back on the sugar, omit the brown sugar and add 2 Tablespoons of water.

4)These bars must be room temperature before cutting. I wait two-three hours before cutting.  Or you could make them at night and allow them to cool overnight.  They will cut easily and hold their shape.

5)I cannot stress enough how important it is to line your pan with parchment paper. These are sticky!  They will stick to the pan if you don’t spray it with non- stick cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper.

Homemade Granola Bars {Healthy Breakfast On The Go}

Yields: 12 bars

Ingredients:

2 cups old-fashioned oats

1 cup sliced almonds

1 cup organic flaked coconut, unsweetened 

1 heaping Tablespoon coconut oil

2/3 cup honey 

1/4 dark brown sugar 

2 teaspoons vanilla 

Pinch of salt

1 cup dried cranberries, chopped 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Spray a 10-inch square pan with non-stick cooking spray and line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper.

In a large skillet over medium heat, toast the old-fashioned oats, sliced almonds, and coconut for about 5 minutes. It will smell fragrant and nutty once it’s toasted. Place in a large mixing bowl.

In a saucepan bring the coconut oil, honey, and dark brown sugar to a boil. Cook for about a minute, stirring with a wooden spoon, then remove from the heat, add vanilla & salt. Pour over the oat mixture and stir well. Stir in chopped, dried cranberries.

Pour mixture into prepared pan and press into the pan using the back of your spoon (I used a wooden spoon). Bake for 25 minutes. Place on a cooling rack to cool completely. Once cooled, remove from the pan and cut into 12 bars. Store in a plastic bag at room temperature or wrap individually in parchment paper. Enjoy !

This recipe was slightly adapted from HERE.
                                                                                          


Apple & Pear Danish with Almond Glaze 

This recipe is super easy and versatile. You can play around with different fillings and toppings to make it your own. But with that being said…. you have to try this pear & apple combination with the dried cranberries.

 Plus, the smell of this danish baking in the oven screams fall. 

Here’s My Notes 

1)The dough must be made the day before you plan to serve. I make mine the night before and chill overnight.

2)This dough makes two loaves, you can make two different flavors; at the bottom of the post I have a apple pie version.
Apple & Pear Danish with Almond Glaze 

Yields: 2 loaves 

Ingredients:

Dough:

1 cup full-fat sour cream

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup butter, cut into cubes

1 teaspoon salt

4 1/2 teaspoons or 2 packages dry yeast 

1/2 cup warm water, 110-118 degrees F.

2 eggs, lightly beaten

4 cups all-purpose flour 

Filling:

2 large apples, peeled and sliced, I used Granny Smith

3 pears, peeled and sliced 

1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour

Pinch of salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 

Freshly grated nutmeg 

1/2 cup dried cranberries 

Icing:

2 oz. cream cheese, room temperature 

2 Tablespoons butter, melted 

1 cup powdered sugar, sifted

1/4 cup half-n-half

Pinch of salt 

1/4 teaspoon vanilla 

1/2 teaspoon almond extract 

Sliced almonds

Directions:

Combine sour cream, sugar, butter, and salt in a medium-sized saucepan; heat until butter melts. Cool mixture to 110-118 degrees F. 

Dissolve yeast in warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer; allow the yeast to bloom for about 5 minutes. Stir in the sour cream mixture and the eggs. Using the paddle attachment and with the mixer on low speed, gradually add in the flour. The dough will be sticky; over the mixing bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or for 8 hours.

After the dough has chilled overnight, divide it in half and roll it out until it’s about 1/2 inch thick. 

In a medium mixing bowl combine all the filling ingredients together. Then evenly spread the filling over the top of the rolled out dough. Roll the sides of the dough up over the middle, then flip the whole loaf so that the seam is on the bottom. Cut about five slits on the top and place the dough in a warm place to rise for about 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake for about 20 minutes.

 While the bread is baking prepare the glaze: using a hand mixer beat all the glaze ingredients together in a mixing bowl until well blended. 

While the bread is still warm, generous drizzle the glaze and sprinkle on the sliced almond. Enjoy !

Apple Pie Danish with Cream Cheese Glaze


To make an apple pie version: omit the pears, cranberries, and sliced almonds.


Iced Cranberry-Orange Sweet Tea

Here is a freshing iced tea to enjoy this fall. 

Here in the south, it’s still pretty warm…..but I still want to enjoy the flavors of fall. So I made this cranberry & orange flavored iced tea to have as I sit on the back porch enjoying the crisp fall evenings we’ve been having. Plus, iced tea is always appropriate.

Here’s My Notes

1)I say this about every iced tea recipe…iced tea is best when it’s made in advance. Let the tea chill at least 2 hours before serving. 

2)I only use Red Rose tea, it’s my favorite. Use whatever tea you enjoy.

3)I like my tea sweet, but you can use as much or as little sugar as you like. For a more “healthy” version, decrease sugar to 1/2 cup.

Iced Cranberry-Orange Sweet Tea

Yields:1 gallon

Ingredients:

8 bags of tea

6 cups water

1 1/2 cups sugar

1/3 cup honey 

3 cups cranberry juice cocktail 

1 large orange 

Directions:

Bring the tea bags and water to a boil. Remove from heat and allow to steep for 20 minutes. In a gallon pitcher combine sugar, honey, and cranberry cocktail juice. Slice one half of the orange; add to pitcher. Juice the other half of the orange; add to pitcher. Add in the steeped tea to the pitcher and stir well. Chill tea for at least two hours before serving. Enjoy !

Almond-Chocolate Chip Biscotti with Toasted Coconut 

Here is a little treat to have with your afternoon coffee.

Biscotti is a twice-baked Italian biscuit (cookie) which has a crunchy texture, making it perfect for dipping into a cup of hot coffee. Making biscotti is a little different than making regular drop cookies. Instead of dropping the cookie dough on a baking sheet, you shape it into a cookie loaf and bake it. Once baked, cut the cookie loaf into slices. Bake the slices and that’s it! I chose to dip my biscotti  in melted chocolate. Then I packed on tons of toppings: toasted coconut, chunks of almond milk chocolate, and sliced almonds….no boring biscotti here!



Almond-Chocolate Chip Biscotti and Toasted Coconut 

Yields: 16 biscotti cookies 

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons oil

1/4 cup and 2 Tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla 

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 egg

3/4 cup and 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt 

1/2 baking powder 

1/4 cup chopped chocolate ( I used Hershey’s Almond Milk Chocolate)

2 cups, semi-sweet chocolate chips

1/2 cup toasted coconut 

1/2 cup sliced almonds 

1/2 cup coarsely chopped almond milk chocolate 

Directions 



Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

In a large bowl, mix together oil and sugar until well blended. Add in vanilla and almond extracts, then beat in the egg. In another bowl sift together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Stir in chopped chocolate.

Place the dough onto a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat. Cover your hands with flour to help shape the dough because it’s very sticky. Shape the dough into a loaf. Bake for 35 minutes or until light brown, check to see if it’s done by inserting a toothpick in the center and it comes out clean. Let the loaf cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes.

Cut the loaf diagonally into about 1-inch thick slices. Lay the slices onto a silicone lined baking sheet. Bake for an additional 10 minutes, flipping the biscotti halfway through. Cool the biscotti completely before dipping.

 For dipping: 

Melt the chocolate in the microwave. Melt in 30 second increments; stirring after each increment. After the chocolate is melted, dip each biscotti cookie in the chocolate and immediately sprinkle with desired toppings. Lay on a sheet of parchment paper for the chocolate to set. Enjoy! 
Recipe was adapted from HERE.


This recipe was used to decorate my Insane Milkshake.

Hand-Held Breakfast Sandwich 

Crispy slices of bacon sandwiched between an old-fashioned style pancake, and then drizzled with syrup.

This recipe was my Daddy’s idea… With his birthday this past week, I made his idea come to life. I started out with a good ol’ basic pancake recipe, one with no buttermilk, cause I know everyone doesn’t keep it in their fridge. Then just fry up some bacon and get out the syrup. I add fresh blueberries and toasted pecan, because those are my favorite toppings on pancakes. You can be creative and add different toppings to yours. I think these hand-held treats would make a great breakfast on the go. The kids can grab one before running out the door to school. 


Here’s My Notes:

1)For this recipe thick cut bacon is best.

2)The best way to fry bacon is low and slow. I start cooking it on medium-high heat to get it started, then lower the temperature.

3)You want the bacon to be fried straight so you can lay it easily inside the pancake. 

4)Don’t forget your melted butter in the microwave.
Hand-Held Breakfast Sandwich 

Yields: 4 servings: 8 breakfast sandwiches (2 sandwiches per serving)

Ingredients:



1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons sugar

1 1/4 cups milk

1 egg

3 Tablespoons butter, melted 

1/2 teaspoon vanilla 

1 lb. thick cut bacon

Optional toppings: fresh blueberries, chopped toasted pecans, warmed pancake syrup

Directions:

Begin by preparing the pancake batter: In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the milk, egg, melted butter, and vanilla. Mix until smooth. 

Melt one Tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium heat. Pour 1/4 cup of  batter for each pancake. Cook each side for about 2-3 minutes. Keep the cooked pancakes warm in oven preheated to 200 degrees F.

Place bacon in a cold skillet, turn the burner on medium heat and cook until crispy.

Once the bacon is cooked it’s time to assemble: take a pancake and place two strips of bacon in the middle, top it with your desired toppings. Fold up the sides and eat it like a taco. Enjoy !





Simple Cream Cheese Danish with Strawberry Jam {A Strawberry Summer Recipe #3}

I’m always baking something new and trying out new recipes. So when something sticks out to me from all the rest…it’s pretty epic. 


These Cheese Danishes are amazing!!! They are seriously one of the best things I’ve had lately! I gave a few of these to my friend Ana Maria who is crazy about danishes…and she loved them. 

Strawberry Jam is so versatile and is the perfect topping for these simple pastries. You could serve these for a Saturday morning breakfast or brunch. And absolutely for your next afternoon tea. 
Simple Cream Cheese Danish with Strawberry Jam {A Strawberry Jam Recipe #3}

Recipe was adapted from HERE.

Yields: about 7 pastries 

Ingredients 

For the danishes:

1 can refrigerated crescent rolls

4 oz. cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup sugar 

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 

Zest of one small lemon

For the glaze:

1/2 cup powdered sugar 

4 Tablespoons butter, melted 

1/2 teaspoon vanilla 

Homemade Strawberry Jam 
Directions 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a baking sheet with a Silicone baking mat.

Carefully remove the crescent rolls from packaging. Unroll and press dough together to form a solid sheet. Lightly roll out the dough to 14-inches long. Sprinkle with sugar (about 2 Tablespoons). Cut dough into 14 strips. Now take two strips and twist them together, then spiral the twist around itself to form a circle. Place onto the prepared baking sheet.

Press the center of each pastry to make a well for the filling.

In a medium mixing bowl prepare the filling, cream together the cream cheese, sugar, lemon zest, and vanilla with a hand mixer.

Spoon a Tablespoon of filling into each pastry. Bake in preheated oven for about 13-15 minutes or until lightly golden brown.

While the danishes are baking prepare the glaze, stir together the powered sugar, butter, and vanilla.

Once the danishes have finished baking let them cool for about 10-15 minutes before glazing them.

Assembly 

Using a piping bag fitted with a #2 piping tip or with a spoon, pipe or drizzle the glaze over the danishes. Top each danish with strawberry jam. Enjoy !

Summer Fruit Tart

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This summer dessert has three components: fresh fruit, a creamy custard, and a French pastry. This is the first time I’ve ever used this kind of crust, and I was very impressed. It’s a pastry crust called pâte sucree, it’s French for “sweet pastry dough”. It’s sweeter, less flaky,and has the texture of a cookie. I dare to say I love it more than the All-American crust, which is more flaky and tender. For the filling I decided to make a sweet vanilla custard with a hint of lemon. This custard reminds me of melted ice-cream. To finish, I topped the tart with fresh fruit. The tasty result— impressive!

Here’s my Notes

1)I added fresh lemon zest to my custard ,but as always it’s optional.

2)If you have whole vanilla beans (I envy you) you could split one open and scrape out the seeds and add to your custard.

3)Use whatever fruit you like the possibilities are endless!

4)There is no substitute for the whole milk.

5)There are quite a few steps in making this tart ,but this beautiful dessert is worth it.

 

Fruit Tart

The tart crust recipe came from HERE and there’s a video!

Custard recipe came for HERE

Yields:8 servings

Ingredients

1/2 cup butter, room tempeature

1/4 cup sugar

1 egg, beaten

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

pinch of salt

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1 1/2 cups whole milk

2/3 cup sugar

6 egg yolks

2 Tablespoons butter, softened

1 teaspoon vanilla

zest of one lemon

3-4 cups fruit of choice (I used one kiwi, one can peaches, one carton fresh strawberries, and half a cup fresh blueberries)

Directions

First start by preparing the custard, In a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisk milk and sugar constantly until hot.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly spoon in a little of the hot milk to the eggs yolks, whisking constantly. Slowly add remaining milk, then return the mixture back to the saucepan. Heat the custard over low heat for about 5 minutes or until thickened slightly, stirring constantly. It should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Do not let the mixture come to a simmer or the eggs will curdle.

Remove from heat and melt the butter into custard. Add vanilla. Immediately strain the custard into a small bowl. If using lemon add the zest and stir. Cover bowl with plastic wrap making sure it’s touching the top of the custard. Place in the fridge to chill for at least one hour.

Now  prepare the pastry crust, Place softened butter into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, and beat until creamy. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy, scraping the bowl as needed. Gradually add the beaten egg, beating until just incorporated. Add flour and salt all at once and mix just until it forms a ball. Flatten the pastry into a disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

Prepare a tart pan with a removable bottom with non-stick cooking spray. Evenly pat the chilled pastry onto the bottom and sides of the pan. Place in the freezer for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly prick the bottom of the pastry crust with a fork , this will prevent the dough from puffing up as it bakes. Bake crust in preheated oven for 5 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and continue to bake for about 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool crust completely before filling.

Assembly

Once the custard and crust are completely cooled you can start assembling the tart. Fill the bottom of the pastry crust with the custard. Then decorate the top with the fresh fruit. If not serving immediately, refrigerate until ready to serve. I suggest eating the tart the same day its assembled. Enjoy !