No Bake Monster Cookies

A few weeks ago, a friend posted a picture on Facebook of some cookies her daughter had created for 4-H. One of the cookies was a no bake monster cookie. I asked her for the recipe and she said they had found it on Pinterest. Since I follow her on Pinterest, I checked out her pins. This recipe is super easy and protein packed. It’s quick and easy but not as good as my mom’s original monster cookie recipe. My husband agreed. However, I did get a chance to use my my new cookie scoop I got as a wedding gift.

No Bake Monster Cookies by The Baker Mama
FullSizeRender (7)2 1/2 c. oatmeal
1 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. honey
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 c. mini chocolate chips
1/2 c. mini M&Ms

Mix together oatmeal, peanut butter, honey, and extract. Then, stir in chocolate chips and M&Ms. Scoop into round balls on parchment paper and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before eating. Once solid, you can transfer to an airtight container so they don’t dry out.

Notes:

  • I used reduced fat creamy peanut butter but the original recipe says you can also use crunchy peanut butter.
  • I used regular sized chocolate chips and M&Ms. They worked but the might have stayed together better if I had used the mini sizes.
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An Amber Original

Back in my Komen days, I remember going with our Community Outreach Manager to Atchison to present our first grant to the hospital. As the only hospital/imaging center serving that region of northeast Kansas, they hosted a big pink party to celebrate. One of the things their chef made was these amazing chocolate cookies with Raspberry M&Ms. I was in love. Although I haven’t been able to locate a recipe for these delicious cookies, I opted to take my best cookie recipe, remove the confectioner sugar, and add raspberry M&Ms. My you enjoys these as much as my Marriott co-workers did. They will melt in your mouth when served warm.

Chocolate Raspberry CookiesChocolate Raspberry Cookies by Amber Bourek
3/4 c. Butter, melted
1/2 c. Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 c. Sugar
2 c. Flour
1 tsp. Baking Powder
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1/2 tsp. Salt
2 Eggs
1 tsp. Vanilla
1/2 c. Chocolate Chips
1/2 c. Raspberry M&Ms

In a large bowl, mix butter, cocoa, and sugar. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Use an electric mixer to add eggs and vanilla into chocolate mixture. Slowly add dry ingredients. Stir in chocolate chips. Refrigerate overnight. Roll into balls and place on baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes.

Notes:

  • I used mini-chocolate chips and it wasn’t as rich as I would have liked. I’d recommend using Milk Chocolate regular sized chips. You might even want to use 3/4 cup.
  • I used 1/2 c. Raspberry M&Ms. That put only about one M&M per cookie. You might want to use 3/4 or 1 cup of M&Ms.
  • I didn’t add but you could easily add a tsp. of raspberry syrup instead of adding more M&Ms.

Monster Dip

If you have followed my blog for awhile, you might know I love M&Ms. In fact, a eat a few of them out of my candy dish probably every day. One of my all time favorite cookies is Monster Cookies because it contains M&Ms. My mother makes them perfectly but mine never turn out quite as good.

A few days ago, I spotted this recipe on an old friend from high school’s Facebook page. I just knew I had to make it. Without eggs, you can eat the raw dish without having to worry about salmonella like you do when you sample uncooked cookie dough. I’ve tried this dip with Teddy Grams, pretzels, and apples. I liked it the best on pretzels. I think it might also be good on graham or animal crackers.

Monster Cookie DipMonster Dip
1 package of cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 c. peanut butter
2 c. powdered sugar
3 T. brown sugar
1/4 c. flour
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 to 2 1/2 c. oats (less makes a smoother dip)
2/3 c. M&Ms
1 c. chocolate chips

Use a mixer to blend cream cheese, butter, and peanut butter until smooth. Add powder sugar, brown sugar, flour, and vanilla. Add oats. Stir in M&Ms and chocolate chips. Refrigerate until serving. It makes a large storage container full.

Notes:

  • I used reduced fat cream cheese and peanut butter.
  • I only used 1 1/2 c. oats and my recipe was fairly smooth.

Raspberry Bites

I saw this recipe on Pinterest. It was a little different than my Rolo Pretzels Bites. The recipe online used the square pretzel which is a great alternative when you can’t find the round ones. I decided to give it a try. To my surprise, the Kisses melted just as nicely as the Rolos. I think it is a great way to change the flavor of these simple treats by using whatever flavor of Kisses you most desire.

Raspberry BitesRaspberry Bites on Pinterest
round pretzels (or square if you can’t find the round ones)
raspberry flavored Hershey’s Kisses, unwrapped
M&Ms

Place baking mat on a cookie sheet.  Line mat with pretzels. Place a Hershey’s Kiss (point side up) in the center of each. Bake at 225 degrees for 4 minutes. Remove from oven and place M&M in the center of each. Chill in the refrigerator until harden.

Matchbook Treats

The first weekend of November, I was off work from the hotel to celebrate my mother’s 60th birthday with her. On our way to her favorite store, I saw a sign for a PEO fundraising craft fair. We decided to check it out. One of the cutest things we saw was decorative matchbooks. Inside was a tiny baggie with mini-M&Ms and the others has Ghirardelli Squares. I decided this was something I could recreate for holiday stocking stuffers. Here is how I did it.

Candy MatchbooksMatchbook Treats by Amber Bourek
Ghirardelli chocolates
Assorted cardstock
Stickers or other decorative items (glue stick or dots may be needed)
A stapler

Cut paper so it is large enough to wrap around chocolate. Staple chocolate in like a book of matches. Tuck flap under like a match book. Decorate.

Notes:

  • I wanted holiday paper and Hobby Lobby only had that on paper not cardstock. I had to glue it to the cardstock.
  • I used double-sided sticky dots to make my Matchbooks three dimensional. In some cases, I cut out pictures on the pages.
  • Be careful if you buy paper like The Grinch and only give it to a true Dr. Seuss fan. Otherwise, people will think you think they are a Grinch.

M&M Pretzels

Perhaps my salted chocolate caramel obsession started with these treats. If you ask me my favorite candy bar, I’ll probably tell you it is 100 Grand bar. But truth be told, I always have a dish of M&Ms in my house. Usually they are plain but on occasion, I have Pretzel M&Ms.

I’m sure you have seen this recipe made with almond bark and Hershey’s Kisses. But this one is the easiest and best tasting.

M&M PretzelsM&M Pretzels by Stephanie Bourek
Rolos candies
Round pretzels (you can only buy them Christmas time)
Plain M&Ms

Unwrap Rolo candies. Layout pretzels on a silicone mat (or foil lined) cookie sheet. Insert Rolos upside down into pretzels. Bake at 250 degrees for 3-4 minutes. Remove from oven and inset M&M candy. Put cookie sheet in fridge for 10 minutes to harden. Make as many as you desire.

Note:

  • Buy Rolos in the checkout line. This will help you avoid having to unwrap each individual candy.
  • My sister has substituted a pecan for the M&M. It makes more of a turtle candy.
  • I just saw in the Hy-Vee ad that they broke another pretzel to turn it into antlers for a Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer looking treat. But they are easier to eat the old fashioned way (looking like wreaths.)

Caramel Chex Mix

I got this recipe from my sister. I have no idea who gave it to her but I would say it is one of her signature dishes. She often makes it as part of her Christmas gift for important people in her life. But she has also made it for road trips to Oklahoma and long hotel stays like when my dad’s wife was in the hospital. One of the things I really like about this recipe is how my sister always adds different things to it and it still turns out good. I hope you enjoy this sweet snack.

Caramel Chex Mix by Stephanie Bourek

2 sticks of butter
1 1/2 c. brown sugar
1/3 c. Light Karo Syrup
1/2 tsp. of baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 boxes of Chex mix

In a sauce pan, melt butter, brown sugar, and corn syrup. Bring to a boil for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda and vanilla. In a brown paper grocery bag, put two boxes of cereal. Pour hot caramel over cereal. Close and shake. Microwave for 2 minutes. Remove, shake, and microwave for another two minutes. Repeat one more time. Then, carefully pour onto wax paper covered cookie sheets and let cool. Once cooled, you can add candy pieces to mix.

Other possible cereal and mix in options:

  • Chex or Crispix
  • Golden Grahams
  • Cheerios
  • Fiber One Cereal
  • Pretzels
  • Twizzlers (cut into bit sized pieces)
  • M&Ms
  • Tiny caramel chews
  • Candy Corn
  • Nuts

I Think My Oven Hates Me

I’m sure we have all thought it at least once. A recipe that you love when somebody else makes it doesn’t turn out quite the same when you make it. What did I do wrong? You check with the original recipe provider just to make sure you didn’t miss any ingredients. You ask what brands they used. You might even try using different bake ware. As a last resort you watch them make the recipe. But you still can’t get the recipe to come out just right. That’s when I blame my oven.

The recipe for me that seems to keep eluding me is Monster Cookies. One of my favorite memories from my childhood is making cookies with my mom. When I was really little my mother stayed home with me and did the books for my parents gas/service station. My mother was always cooking up something in the kitchen and trying new recipes. She also baked lots of desserts for funerals at our church. But my mom always let me help her make cookies.

We usually made Chocolate Chip Cookies. For helping, I got to eat the leftover batter in the bowl. (Yes, this was before we knew the salmonella from raw eggs was bad for you and the invention of Cookie Dough ice cream.) I have always loved chocolate, especially M&Ms. As a kid, I didn’t get to eat chocolate very often because my sister was allergic. (She ate too many solid chocolate Easter Bunnies as a kid. And I’m sorry but carob is not chocolate!) Monster Cookies were great because they included chocolate chips and M&Ms. What’s not to love.

I can’t tell you how many times I have made this recipe and I still can’t get it to look like my mother’s Monster Cookies. They taste fine but they look flat. At first, I thought it was because I was using reduced fat peanut butter so I switched to regular. They still looked flat. Then, I left the dough in the fridge over night to get stiffer. No change. I decided to cook them on a regular cookie sheet as opposed to a mat or air bake pan. Still no change.

I told my sister that it must be because I used generic oatmeal. My sister made me feel better when she told me that her cookies looked just like mine and she uses Quaker oatmeal. Steph also reminded me that my mother had baked the cookies at her house, with her ingredients and magically got the cookies to not look flat.

I share this recipe in hopes your cookies look like they do when my mother bakes them. Even if they don’t, I promise they still taste exactly the same. Pure heaven!

Monster Cookies by Kathy Bourek

1/2 c. butter
1 c. sugar
1 and 1/2 c. brown sugar
3 eggs
1 and 1/2 c. peanut butter
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. baking soda
2 c. oatmeal
1 c. chocolate chips
1/2 c. M&Ms

Cream together first three ingredients. Continue to add ingredients and stir. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes.

Pots of Gold

My original hometown of Wisner, NE is a Irish community. That meant you had to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day or someone would pinch you. As a kid, I remember school letting out early on St. Patrick’s Day so you could go participate in the festivities. If it wasn’t raining, the city would paint a big Shamrock on Main Street. I believe the parade started at the City Auditorium and featured the high school marching band. We usually watched it from the curb at my dad’s service station. But my sister’s senior year, she was on the float as a candidate for Shamrock Princess. For dinner, we would sometimes get pizza with a green crust or a green twist ice cream cone. I’m pretty sure lots of people drank green beer but I wasn’t old enough to hang out at the bars to find that out for sure.

I was surprised at just how many recipes I have seen lately for St. Patrick’s Day. Sure, you expect to see recipes for Irish Soda Bread, Sheppard’s Pie, and Corned Beef and Cabbage. Today’s recipe is fun snack from the Betty Crocker website. But I think you could enjoy it anytime of year.

Pot o’ Gold Chex Mix

4 c. Lucky Charms cereal
2 c. Corn Chex cereal
1 & 1/2 c. pretzel rods
1 c. dry-roasted peanuts
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. butter
2 T. corn syrup
1/8 tsp. baking soda
1/4 c. green M&Ms

In a large microwavable bowl, mix cereals, pretzels, and peanuts. In a glass bowl, mix brown sugar, butter and corn syrup. Microwave for 2 minutes, stirring after each minute. Stir in baking soda until it is dissolved. Pour over cereal mixture and stir until evenly coated. Microwave on high for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds. Spread out on wax paper to cool. After 5 minutes, sprinkle with M&Ms. Break into bite-sized servings and place in gold foil muffin baking cups. Store leftovers  in an airtight container. Makes 20 servings (1/2 c. each).

Komen Munch

While at training for work in Dallas, I met a co-worker with a similar passion for cooking. Our training class asked what her best dish was that she makes. Her fellow co-workers from headquarters immediately replied, “that party mix you make.” They called it “addictive.” I, of course, had to have this recipe.

While enjoying a few vacation days, I decided to test some of the many recipes in my repertoire. I wanted to make this one for my fellow Komen co-workers with pink M&Ms I had left over from Valentine’s Day. Oh my goodness, this recipe is amazing! It combines salty, sweet, and crunchy. What mouth wouldn’t love that? Bon Appétit!

Komen Munch by Rebecca Gibson

20-24 oz. (one package) of Almond Bark
3 c. pretzels sticks
4 c. Golden Grahams
1.5 c. M&Ms (I used plain Milk Chocolate)
1.5 c. mini-marshmallows

In a large (popcorn/That a Bowl), combine pretzels and cereal. In a small bowl, combine M&Ms and marshmallows. In a microwaveable bowl, empty contents of almond bark package. Melt according to package instructions. Once bark is melted, our over pretzel mixture and stir. Add M&Ms mixture (do this so you don’t melt these ingredients) and stir. Pour onto wax paper coated cookie sheets and let harden. After it is harden, break into chuck sized pieces.

Notes:

  • This makes A LOT! If you aren’t sharing, half the recipe.
  • Rebecca suggest you change the name based on the color of M&Ms you use – Reindeer Munch, Cupid Crunch, Bunny Bites, etc. Love it!

Golden Grahams are actually healthier than I thought – only one gram of fat in a ¾ c. serving. I think you could probably substitute honey flavored Fiber One cereal or Cheerios if you think they are healthier. Another friend suggested Life or Chex cereal.