Cookies & Cream Brownies, Oh My!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SplashofDelight #CollectiveBias

Brownies. For some, it’s as lifelong love. For others, like me, it’s taken time and some pretty good brownies to awaken my deep love for them. I even have a Pinterest board named, “Brownies and More Brownies” which is a nod to my “Cookies and More Cookies” board. They are perhaps my most used Pinterest boards. Why do I love brownies so much? It was the right one at the right time, of course. I like fudgy brownies. I like sprinkled brownies. Mainly, I like brownies that have multi-layer surprises waiting for you inside their fudgy goodness. Gooey caramel? Yes. Peanut butter cups? Obviously. Cookie dough? Yes.

How about COOKIES? Entire ones!

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Some of my favorite brownies recipes call for sweetened condensed milk. While that’s fine for many, I realized that you could substitute International Delight® Creamers in many baking recipes, and not only add creaminess, but also add new dimensions of flavor. I couldn’t wait to make my favorite frosting recipe (good old butter and powdered sugar) with International Delight® Cold Stone Creamery™ Sweet Cream. How many ways are these brownies cookies and cream?

Let me count the ways.

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There are cookies. There is cream(er). There are creamy cookies. There is cookie-ish creamer.

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Cookies and Cream Brownies Recipe Time:

Cookies & Cream Brownies

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 60 minutes

Yield: 12 brownies

Cookies & Cream Brownies

Ingredients

  • 1 box brownie mix
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • Sandwich cookies (about 9-12)
  • For the frosting:
  • International Delight® Cold Stone Creamery™ Sweet Cream
  • 1 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Make brownie batter according to instructions, or from scratch
  2. Spread half the batter on the bottom of the pan
  3. Add a layer of cookies
  4. Spread the other half of the batter on top of the cookies
  5. Bake according to scratch recipe or box (about 40 minutes here)
  6. Let cool
  7. For the frosting, mix the butter, powdered sugar, and International Delight® Cold Stone Creamery™ Sweet Cream until well mixed and then slather it on the brownies

Notes

These gooey and delicious brownies have full cookies inside, and are topped with frosting made with International Delight® Cold Stone Creamery™ Sweet Cream.

http://tamaracamerablog.com/cookies-cream-brownies-oh/

What do you think? I think a little chocolate drizzled on top would be top-notch as well, but there is plenty of flavor from the cookies inside the brownies, and from the International Delight® Cold Stone Creamery™ Sweet Cream inside the frosting.

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Let it be known that while International Delight® Creamers are awesome for baking (and breakfast), it’s also perfect for your morning cup of coffee. The new International Delight® Half Gallon Creamer is an easier bottle to hold and pour.

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Mornings can be tough in the cold weather. After I drop the kids off at two different schools, I come home to an empty house and I have those beautiful moments alone before diving into work. That’s when I love a hot cup of decaf (yes, I know) with International Delight® French Vanilla. It’s wonderful with coffee and wonderful for baking brownies too.

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I find it in the dairy aisle of Walmart. The new half gallon bottles are easy to find and I buy them in three flavors. I like to vary it up with my morning coffee routine, but it’s also fun to try different flavors for different kinds of baking. I can see cookies, brownies and cakes in my future – all used with various creamer flavors. I can’t wait! Next up, I think I’m going to try Caramel Brownies with International Delight® Caramel Macchiato. I have just the recipe to perfect. Stay tuned for that!

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Which flavor of International Delight® Creamer do you most look forward to trying first (it’s tough!): International Delight® French Vanilla, International Delight® Caramel Macchiato, or International Delight® Cold Stone Creamery™ Sweet Cream?

Getting Your Kids To Open Up

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #FavoritesInAMix #CollectiveBias

Lately, Scarlet and I have shifted into a nighttime routine that just seemed to happen on its own. Cassidy was out or busy or working a few times, and even though he’s been the bedtime guy for years now, ever since I was pregnant with Des and then also handling a newborn, I enjoy putting the kids to bed. I enjoy the process of putting one, two, and then three blankets over her – no matter what time of year it is. I enjoy the back scratches, strange questions, and short stories. Only recently did she want me to tell her real stories from my childhood and young adulthood, rather than the made up “door in the floor” stories I had been telling her since toddlerhood. In many ways, this is exactly why I always wanted to be a parent before this.

I’m a storyteller and I always will be. And I have a lot to say. Yet, what about what I want to hear?

With our long Alaska trip and having the kids go to “Nana Camp” for nine days, as well as getting a little lost in the shuffle of daily life – camp, school, friends, activities, learning, reading, writing, sports, whatever, I miss my girl sometimes. It’s not that she needs me less than she used to, but it’s that she is having longer intervals of time away from home. This is growing up. This is what I want for her, but I miss her gorgeous face – and more importantly – the words that come out of her mouth.

I was shopping at Target, unsurprisingly, and I found four NEW Pillsbury™ Girl Scout™ flavored baking mixes in the baking aisle. I’m always looking for products that bond Scarlet and me together. They excited us quite a bit in four flavors:

And, here are the flavors!

1. Girl Scouts® Caramel & Coconut Blondie Mix
2. Girl Scouts® Caramel & Coconut Cookie Mix
3. Girl Scouts® Thin Mints® Brownie Mix
4. Girl Scouts® Thin Mints® Cupcake Mix

So of course I picked up a couple so I could let Scarlet decide which one she wanted to make together. I was a Girl Scout when I was just a little older than she is, and some of my favorite memories of my troop meetings were when we baked together! In the fall, we made caramel apples and cupcakes. In the spring, we sold cookies. I love that my favorite cookie flavors can now be found in brownies or cupcakes. This is a special memory for me, and now it’s time to make more for her:

The Pillsbury™ Girl Scout™ flavored baking mixes are so easy to use, and they come out so beautifully! I love the chocolate mint taste, and the ganache is probably my favorite part, although the cupcakes are equally good. It melts in your mouth!

Pillsbury™ Girl Scout™ flavored baking mixes are an easy and creative way to bring loved ones together, with the products and flavors that everyone loves. Clearly, I’m a fan. We bonded quite a bit while baking together over the weekend.

And so, it got me thinking about the best ways to get our kids to open up to us, so that we don’t miss too much.

Five Things You Can Do Together to Get Your Kids to Open Up to You:

  1. Of course, I’ll say this first. Make a meal or bake a snack or dessert together. It requires concentration, but there’s also downtime. Notice the conversation openers and jump on them! Also try to listen before instantly jumping in to offer advice.

  1. Teach them something. Whether it’s something you love – in my case writing and photography – something new that they love, or a new skill, it creates so much opportunity for conversation. Like when Scarlet taught herself to tie her own shoes!

  1. Have a picnic together! They say to make sure you connect with each of your children every single day, and I love to have one-on-one picnics with mine. We talk about everything buzzing around us, and also about the deeper things on our minds.

  1. Build “special time” with each child into your routine, every day. If that’s bedtime, great, because that’s when I can tell my kids all the stories that mean so much to me, and pass along the most special memories I have to the people I love most.

  1. Stay open and available. Listen. Look them in the eyes. Respect them. Always be there. You know, just like you’re doing.

Pillsbury™ Girl Scout™ flavored baking mixes bring us together in conversation and love.

Finally, how do you get your kids to open up to you? Do you like baking? What flavor of Pillsbury™ Girl Scout™ Baking Mixes looks best to you? Right now, there’s a Cartwheel offer at Target. Save 20% off purchase of product from 7/31 – 10/1!