Dessert

Baked Apple Cider Donuts

Baked Apple Cider Donuts  |  Lemon & Mocha

September is here! To try to get myself excited for the end of summer I’m diving right into fall recipes. Don’t get me wrong – I love fall. Here in New England the changing leaves are beautiful and there’s plenty of fun fall activities. I love all the celebrations: Halloween, Thanksgiving, my anniversary and my birthday. Of course you can’t forget all the delicious fall flavors coupled with cozy blankets and cool nights.

Baked Apple Cider Donuts  |  Lemon & Mocha

But these last few years I’ve started this shift where summer is starting to tie fall as my favorite season. Maybe it’s because I’m cold all the time and I can appreciate the summer heat more since I’m much better at avoiding getting sunburned these days. It’s hard to beat the long days as well, especially since I’m a morning person and highly unproductive once the sun goes down. Yet here we are in September so I’m trying to amp myself up with a week dedicated to one of fall’s classic flavors: apple.

Baked Apple Cider Donuts  |  Lemon & Mocha

Apples are synonymous with fall, with plenty thanks to apple picking being a quintessential fall activity. The best treat while apple picking is a hot apple cider donut caked in cinnamon-sugar. Their sugary spiced scent has you drooling before you even have one in your hands.

Baked Apple Cider Donuts  |  Lemon & Mocha

Today we’re recreating that deliciousness with these Baked Apple Cider Donuts. It had been too long since I used my silicone donut pans and I was excited to break them out for another baked donut treat. The key to getting that perfect apple cider flavor in these donuts is that we’re using apple cider concentrate that we’ve made by reducing apple cider down on the stove-top. We’re also adding plenty of cinnamon, nutmeg and other apple pie spices to get that rich spiced flavor.

Baked Apple Cider Donuts  |  Lemon & Mocha

If you don’t have a donut pan you can bake these up in a sprayed mini muffin pan at the same temperature in the recipe below for about nine minutes. I hope you enjoy this tasty fall treat!

Baked Apple Cider Donuts  |  Lemon & Mocha

Baked Apple Cider Donuts
 
Yield: 12-14 donuts
Ingredients
for the donuts
  • 1¾ cups apple cider, see first instruction
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom or allspice
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup milk, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
for the sugar topping
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1¼ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom or allspice
Directions
for the donuts
  1. Reduce the apple cider. Heat in a saucepan over medium-low heat for about 30 minutes, or until it has reduced to ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons. It can take a while so be patient; you most likely aren’t doing anything wrong and it just needs to reduce longer. The apple cider will not get thicker, it will just reduce down to less liquid and also get a little darker. Let cool for 10 minutes before using in the recipe.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray donut pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  3. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices and salt in a large mixing bowl.
  4. Whisk together the melted butter, egg, sugar, brown sugar, milk and vanilla in a medium mixing bowl. Pour the butter mixture into the flour mixture and whisk until combined. Add ½ cup of the reduced apple cider and whisk. Carefully pour the batter into the prepared donut pan so that the cavities are filled halfway up. I use Wilton batter spoons; you could also pipe from a piping bag. Bake for 12-14 minutes. The tops of the donuts should be browned and they should spring back lightly when you press them. Cool in the pan for 2-4 minutes then remove to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
for the sugar topping
  1. Place the melted butter and the remaining 2 tablespoons of reduced apple cider in one bowl large enough to dip one donut at a time. In another bowl combine the sugar and spices. Dunk the donut in the melted butter mixture (being sure not to oversaturate) and then dip in the cinnamon-sugar mixture to coat completely. Repeat for the remaining donuts. Donuts will taste best fresh, but can also be eaten at room temperature for 2 days.

Recipe slightly adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction.

Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission for my referral if you purchase something. This does not affect the retail cost of the item. Thank you for supporting Lemon & Mocha!

Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie

Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie  |  Lemon & Mocha

How is it already the end of August? I feel like I say this every summer, but this has definitely been the quickest one yet. The past three months have been a complete whirlwind, but of course there was plenty of time for epic desserts.

Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie  |  Lemon & Mocha

It would be impossible to pick a favorite, but this Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie that I’m sneaking in right at the end here would definitely be a contender. There’s been a lot of dessert making going on in our house so I was hesitant to load Matt and I up with even more, but I couldn’t let the summer go by without sharing this outrageous Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie I discovered about six months ago from my Sally’s Baking Addiction cookbook.

Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie  |  Lemon & Mocha

The base of this no-bake pie is a classic Oreo crust because the only thing better than peanut butter is chocolate and peanut butter. Then there’s a layer of fresh banana slices that get covered with a creamy peanut butter filling. The whole pie is frozen and topped with fresh whipped cream so that each bite is light and balanced.

Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie  |  Lemon & Mocha

I’ve always loved bananas, but other than banana splits I hadn’t really eaten too many desserts incorporating banana. This Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie has the perfect amount of banana flavor. It’s secondary to the peanut butter and chocolate Oreos and adds a great freshness to the pie.

Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie  |  Lemon & Mocha

As with most no-bake pies, this one is incredibly easy to make, which is both a great thing and a dangerous thing. You’ve been warned! Enjoy!

Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie  |  Lemon & Mocha

Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie
 
Yield: 8-10 servings
Ingredients
  • 28 Oreo cookies, crushed into crumbs (do not remove cream filling)
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 large bananas, thinly sliced, plus more for decoration if desired
  • 2 cups heavy cream, divided
  • 8 ounces full-fat cream cheese
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter (not natural peanut butter)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon plus ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract, divided
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
Directions
  1. Make the base of the pie. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the Oreo crumbs with the melted butter and salt. Use the flat bottom of a measuring cup and your fingers to press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Place the banana slices in an even layer on the bottom of the crust and set aside.
  2. Make the filling. Place a metal mixing bowl or the metal bowl of a stand mixer in the freezer along with the metal beaters or beater for 5-10 minutes. Remove and add 1 cup of the heavy cream (make sure your cream is cold) and beat on high speed until stiff peaks form, about 4-5 minutes.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand-held mixer, use the paddle attachment to beat the cream cheese and peanut butter together until creamy and smooth. Add the granulated sugar and 1 tablespoon of the vanilla extract then beat until combined. Use a spatula and gently fold in the whipped cream from the previous step. Spread the peanut butter filling into the springform pan on top of the banana slices.
  4. Make the whipped cream. Place the metal mixing bowl or the metal bowl of a stand mixer back in the freezer along with the metal beaters or beater for 5-10 minutes. Remove and add the remaining cup of the heavy cream (make sure your cream is cold), powdered sugar and the remaining ¾ teaspoon of vanilla extract. Beat on medium-high until stiff peaks form. Spoon over the top of the pie, cover and freeze until firm, about 6 hours. Let pie sit at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving and top with additional banana slices if desired.

Recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction.
Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission for my referral. This does not affect the retail cost of the item. Thank you for supporting Lemon & Mocha!

Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake

Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake  |  Lemon & Mocha

Since I already posted the Classic Ice Cream Cake recipe this summer I wasn’t planning on posting another ice cream cake, but I got the urge to make it so here we are. This right here is a Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake. This cake is my absolute favorite non-chocolate ice cream cake I’ve ever made. It’s fruity, tart, sweet, creamy and so so so good.

Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake  |  Lemon & Mocha

Ice cream cakes are all about the layering so let’s dive in. On the bottom we have a layer of soft lady fingers. You could do a graham cracker layer instead, following directions from the Classic Ice Cream Cake, but I like having a little bit of cake texture with the lemon and black raspberry flavors. Next we have black raspberry ice cream followed by a layer of the Lemon Cream Pie Dip from Monday. The combination of these two together is crazy delicious!

Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake  |  Lemon & Mocha

I also added in a middle layer of graham cracker crunch to give the cake some texture and a little saltiness. Next up, a final layer of black raspberry ice cream and fresh whipped cream. Yum! You could make extra whipped cream and frost the sides, but I went the easier, pile-on-top route this time around.

Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake  |  Lemon & Mocha

I was initially going to try making this in a loaf pan so it would be a small cake. I took one look at all the different components and decided this needed to be full-sized to really get enough of each layer. I’m so glad I did because not having leftovers of this Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake would be a very sad day.

Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake  |  Lemon & Mocha

If you want additional tips for making a perfectly layered ice cream cake, head over to my Classic Ice Cream Cake post. Meanwhile, I’ll be over here trying to convince myself I shouldn’t immediately run out to get everything to make this cake all over again…

Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake  |  Lemon & Mocha

Black Raspberry and Lemon Cream Pie Ice Cream Cake
 
Yield: 8-10 servings
Ingredients
for the lemon cream cheesecake layer
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened (see note)
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 10 ounces lemon curd (usually found near jelly in the grocery store)
  • 8 ounces whipped topping, such as Cool Whip, thawed (see note)
for the ice cream cake
  • 12 soft lady fingers, halved lengthwise
  • 1½ quarts black raspberry ice cream
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 cup crushed graham crackers
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Blackberries, for topping
Directions
for the lemon cream cheesecake layer
  1. Beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer until fluffy and smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the lemon curd and beat until combined. Gently fold in the whipped topping until blended. Keep in the fridge until ready to use.
for the ice cream cake
  1. Line a 9-inch springform pan with plastic wrap so it goes up and over the sides. I use 2 pieces. Use the lady fingers to make a single layer on the bottom of the pan, pressing down as you add them. You might need to rip some to fill up all the little spots.
  2. Scoop half the container of ice cream into the bowl of a stand mixer then beat with your paddle attachment until smooth and spreadable. Use a rubber spatula to spoon over the lady fingers and spread into an even layer. Put in the freezer.
  3. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the crushed graham crackers and sprinkle the brown sugar over top. Cook for about 5 minutes, until toasted and coated. Toss with the salt and set aside to cool. Once cool, remove the cake from the freezer and sprinkle a single layer of the graham crumbs over top, reserving a little to sprinkle over the finished cake. Use a spatula to spoon 4 cups of the lemon cream cheesecake over top (you will have some leftover) and spread into an even layer. Put in the freezer until just firm, about 1 hour.
  4. When the lemon cream cheesecake layer is firm enough to put on another layer, scoop the remaining half the container of ice cream into the bowl of a stand mixer then beat with your paddle attachment until smooth and spreadable. Use a rubber spatula to spoon over the lemon cream cheese layer and spread into an even layer. Put in the freezer.
  5. Make the whipped cream. Place a metal mixing bowl or the metal bowl of a stand mixer in the freezer along with the metal beaters or beater for 5-10 minutes. Remove and add the heavy cream (make sure your cream is cold), powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat on medium-high until stiff peaks form. Spoon over the top of the cake and return to the freezer for at least 2 hours or overnight. When ready to serve, open the ring of the springform pan. Use the plastic wrap to lift up the cake; carefully remove the plastic wrap and transfer the cake to a cake board or platter. Top with the remaining graham cracker crumble and some fresh blackberries. The cake can usually be cut right out of the freezer with a sharp knife.
Notes
You must use block cream cheese for the lemon cream cheesecake layer. You can substitute ⅓ less fat block cream cheese if you prefer.
If you want to use homemade whipped cream for the lemon cream cheesecake layer, follow these instructions: In a cold metal bowl of a stand mixer or in a large cold metal mixing bowl with a hand mixer, use cold beaters to beat 1½ cups cold heavy whipping cream, ¾ cup powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract until stiff peaks form. Also feel free to substitute Lite Cool Whip.

 

Lemon Cream Pie Dip

Lemon Cream Pie Dip  |  Lemon & Mocha

It’s funny how you can go through life without ever experiencing a category of food until it suddenly gets introduced to you decades later. This has happened to me several times, but today I’m talking about sweet dips. When I think of dip, I think of spinach and artichoke dip, Mexican layer dip, hummus, salsa – basically everything savory. Little did I know, there is a whole plethora of sweet dessert dips out there!

Lemon Cream Pie Dip  |  Lemon & Mocha

Do you have any sweet dips you like? If you’ve never had or heard of a dessert dip before, the whole concept of it sounds very odd, at least I thought so. A few years ago at work we were going to have a dip party where everyone would bring in different dips and all these dessert dips got mentioned. I did some Google searching and stumbled across a sweet dip that sounded amazing: Lemon Cream Pie Dip.

Lemon Cream Pie Dip  |  Lemon & Mocha

The recipe was simple, like four ingredients simple, so I made it and the rest is history. By that I mean it’s absolutely amazing and I’ve made it over and over ever since then. Cream cheese and powdered sugar get whipped together until fluffy. Then tangy lemon curd gets mixed in – feel free to use store-bought or homemade – followed by folding in some whipped topping or homemade whipped cream. I’ve made it with store-bought lemon curd and whipped topping and I’ve also made it with homemade versions of both. Each time it was delicious so use whatever you prefer.

Lemon Cream Pie Dip  |  Lemon & Mocha

So now that you have the Lemon Cream Pie Dip what do you do with it? I love to serve it with mini Nilla Wafer cookies, graham crackers, fresh fruit or cannoli chips. You could even frost some vanilla cupcakes with it for a lemon-packed treat.

Lemon Cream Pie Dip  |  Lemon & Mocha

However, you will have to wait until Wednesday to see my personal favorite use for this dip, but I promise the wait will be worth it. Enjoy!

Lemon Cream Pie Dip  |  Lemon & Mocha

Lemon Cream Pie Dip
 
Yield: about 4½ cups
Ingredients
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened (see note)
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 10 ounces lemon curd (usually found near jelly in the grocery store)
  • 8 ounces whipped topping, such as Cool Whip, thawed (see note)
Directions
  1. Beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer until fluffy and smooth, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add the lemon curd and beat until combined.
  3. Gently fold in the whipped topping until blended. Serve cold with mini Nilla wafers, graham crackers, fresh fruit or cannoli chips.
Notes
You must use block cream cheese. You can substitute ⅓ less fat block cream cheese if you prefer.
If you want to use homemade whipped cream, follow these instructions: In a cold metal bowl of a stand mixer or in a large cold metal mixing bowl with a hand mixer, use cold beaters to beat 1½ cups cold heavy whipping cream, ¾ cup powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract until stiff peaks form. Also feel free to substitute Lite Cool Whip.

Recipe from Food Folks and Fun.

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream  |  Lemon & Mocha

My summer cupcake post is here! I loved all the cupcake toppers my goddaughter sent me, but I think I was most excited about the summer ones. Look how adorable they are! The crab googly eyes get me every time. Since they are beach themed it felt appropriate to post them at the end of my family’s annual beach week.

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream  |  Lemon & Mocha

I know we’re already halfway through August (UGH), but thankfully these cupcakes are not just summer cupcakes. These are classic vanilla cupcakes with vanilla buttercream. And by classic I mean perfectly moist, extra fluffy, damn good vanilla cupcakes. Do you know how difficult it is to find a homemade vanilla cupcake recipe that tastes just as good – or better – than those made from a box mix? I’ve tried several over the years and I’ve been disappointed every single time.

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream  |  Lemon & Mocha

Last week I stumbled upon this delicious vanilla cupcake recipe through a happy accident. I initially was planning on making nectarine cupcakes for the summer cupcake post that were an absolute flop. I plan to revisit that recipe idea, but until then I really wanted to bake and photo something for this post before leaving for beach week the next day.

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream  |  Lemon & Mocha

Deciding to revisit my perfect vanilla cupcake search I looked through all my cookbooks and Googled plenty, but there was one problem with every recipe: we only had one egg left in the fridge and I didn’t want to go to the store. I know, so lazy, but at least it led me to this recipe! Apparently there’s an old-fashioned recipe called a One Egg Cake from the Joy of Cooking and it requires minimal ingredients, is very simple and makes outrageously fluffy cupcakes!

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream  |  Lemon & Mocha

I paired these with a traditional vanilla buttercream because sometimes you’re just dying for a classic vanilla-vanilla combo piled high with frosting like you would get at a birthday party. I used a pastry bag fitted with a Wilton 2D tip to frost these cupcakes. If you want something lighter and less sweet then I recommend my mascarpone frosting. Or if you want something chocolatey then definitely make my Perfect Chocolate Frosting. Of course, if you want to turn them into summer cupcakes then make sure to dye the frosting blue and add cute cupcake toppers! Enjoy, friends!

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream  |  Lemon & Mocha

Classic Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream
 
Yield: 16 cupcakes
Ingredients
for the cupcakes
  • ⅓ cup butter, room temperature
  • 1½ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup milk, any fat percentage you prefer
for the frosting
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), room temperature
  • 2½ cups powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Directions
for the cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 cupcake pans with cupcake liners so you have enough for 16 cupcakes.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined with a whisk attachment, scraping down the sides as needed.
  3. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the large bowl and beat on low with the whisk attachment until just combined. Add the milk and beat with the whisk attachment until combined. If the batter is lumpy keep whisking until it isn’t lumpy.
  4. Use a cookie scoop or batter spoon to fill the cupcake liners so they’re half full. You should get 15-16 cupcakes. Bake the cupcakes for 20-22 minutes. They are done with they are golden, the tops spring back when you touch them and just a few moist crumbs come out when you stick a toothpick in the center. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.
for the frosting
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter until soft and fluffy, scraping down the sides as needed. Add the powdered sugar and the vanilla and beat on low until combined, scraping down the sides as needed. I used a pastry bag fitted with a 2D Wilton tip to frost these cupcakes.

Cupcake recipe slightly adapted from Dinner with Julie.
Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission for my referral if you purchase something. This does not affect the retail cost of the item. Thank you for supporting Lemon & Mocha!