Halloween

Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate

Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate  |  Lemon & Mocha

Happy Halloween, everyone! I wanted to send out a quick post to wish you all a Happy Halloween and to share an easy and creamy hot chocolate recipe. This Boozy (or non-boozy) Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate is perfect for staying warm while passing out Halloween candy or for pouring into a to-go mug to sip on while taking your kids trick-or-treating.

Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate  |  Lemon & Mocha

A couple years ago I shared my Spiked Hazelnut Hot Chocolate, also known as when I discovered you could combine hot milk and Nutella to make a irresistible homemade hot chocolate. Mind still blown!

Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate  |  Lemon & Mocha

This year I’ve added some pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice since I’m about all things pumpkin in the fall. Both the chocolatey Nutella and the warming spice of the pumpkin come through and the whipped cream on top is key for making it extra cozy. I tried to slowly sip on mine to make it last, but as soon as it got cool enough next thing I knew my mug was empty. I love the extra depth of flavor the pumpkin adds to the hot chocolate so I’ll probably be making this one all hot chocolate season long. Yes, hot chocolate season is a thing!

Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate  |  Lemon & Mocha

You can keep this drink alcohol free for the kids and non-drinkers or you can turn it into Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate. My original Spiked Hazelnut Hot Chocolate recipe called for some hazelnut liquor, like Frangelico, but apparently there is a pumpkin spice Kahlua that tastes really good according to Adam Rippon that would taste so good in this boozy hot chocolate. The recipe below only makes one, but I have a feeling you’re going to need to multiply that so you can share!

Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate  |  Lemon & Mocha

Just a reminder that I’ll be in Japan starting today for the next week and a half so if I don’t get to your comments or emails right away that is why. <Insert all the excited and sushi emojis here!!!> I hope you all enjoy today and tonight with your family and friends! What are your plans for Halloween? Let me know in the comments below! Maybe making this Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate?!

Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate  |  Lemon & Mocha

Boozy Pumpkin Nutella Hot Chocolate
 
Yield: 1 hot chocolate
Ingredients
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons Nutella
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin puree
  • 1 tablespoon hazelnut liquor or pumpkin spice Kahlua, optional
  • ¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, plus more for topping
  • Whipped cream
Directions
  1. Heat the milk on the stove top or in the microwave until lightly steaming. Add the Nutella, pumpkin puree, liquor (if using), and pumpkin pie spice. Whisk until smooth. Top with whipped cream and a light dusting of pumpkin pie spice.
Notes
You can use any type of milk that you prefer.

 

Leftover Halloween Candy Chocolate Lasagna

Leftover Halloween Candy Chocolate Lasagna  |  Lemon & Mocha

Happy Monday before Halloween! I don’t love Halloween solely because of the candy, but all those Kit Kats and Reese’s are definitely a big factor! No matter what age you are, you’re bound to have leftover candy after Halloween. It may because your kids collected way more than they need so you snagged a stash for yourself. It may be because you bought several Costco size bags of candy, but no one in your neighborhood felt like coming to your house since it’s on a “hill” – speaking from experience.

Leftover Halloween Candy Chocolate Lasagna  |  Lemon & Mocha

It may be because you went trick-or-treating at Disneyland’s Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, which Matt and I did two years ago and it was so much fun! Or maybe you just took advantage of all the after-holiday sales while you were hungry and felt at the time you really had to have all four bags of those fun size chocolate candy bars. Either way, now you have a bunch of candy and while it’s great to eat on its own you can only do so much of that before you never want to look at a candy bar again.

Leftover Halloween Candy Chocolate Lasagna  |  Lemon & Mocha

Enter this Halloween Chocolate Lasagna. I hesitate to call it a Chocolate Lasagna since I think the name makes people not want to try it, but according to the internet and Pinterest that is what this layered chocolatey dessert is called. The bottom layer is a no-bake Oreo crust. Next up we have a sweetened cream cheese layer that’s been folded together with some whipped topping to make it light and fluffy. If you don’t want to use store bought whipped topping you could always fold in some homemade whipped cream so I put those directions in the recipe as well. The next two layers are creamy chocolate pudding and then whipped topping. Don’t forget the Halloween candy! You can use whichever chocolate candies you prefer. I chopped up Kit Kat, Reese’s, Milky Way, Snicker’s and 3 Musketeers and sneaked them in between the pudding layer.

Leftover Halloween Candy Chocolate Lasagna  |  Lemon & Mocha

This dessert is addictive, especially with the candy added in as a fun surprise. It tastes incredibly light while you are eating it, but it’s also very rich at the same time. Everyone who had this ate it up and they even each brought a bowl-full home.

Leftover Halloween Candy Chocolate Lasagna  |  Lemon & Mocha

The first time I ever heard of Chocolate Lasagna was last year when Matt’s mom made it for Christmas. The minute I saw all the whipped cream and chocolate I knew I was going to be in love. We kept the leftovers and by we I mean I may or may not have told Matt he couldn’t have any 😂. When I thought of turning it into a leftover Halloween candy dessert I asked Matt’s mom to send me the recipe so I could share it with all of you. And so I could get to eat it again since I had been dreaming about it since last Christmas. If you are looking for other leftover Halloween candy ideas, check out my Leftover Halloween Candy Cookies!

Leftover Halloween Candy Chocolate Lasagna  |  Lemon & Mocha

Leftover Halloween Candy Chocolate Lasagna
 
Yield: 20 - 24 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 14.3-ounce package of Oreo cookies, about 36 Oreos (not double stuff)
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk, cold (use any fat percentage of milk except non-fat)
  • 12 ounces frozen whipped topping (Cool Whip), defrosted
  • 2 4-ounce packages chocolate instant pudding
  • 3¼ cups milk, cold (use at least 1% milk)
  • About 3 cups chopped leftover Halloween candy
  • Halloween sprinkles, for decorating
Directions
  1. Crush the Oreo cookies using a food processor or by placing them in a large freezer bag and crushing them with a meat mallet or rolling pin. They don’t need to be fine crumbs, but there shouldn’t be any huge chunks of cookie. Pour the cookie crumbs into a large mixing bowl and stir in the melted butter until combined. Pour the crumb mixture into a 9x13 baking pan and press the crumbs to form an even layer on the bottom of the pan. Refrigerate while you work on the rest of the layers.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large mixing bowl with a hand mixer, beat the cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add in the sugar and the 2 tablespoons of milk then beat until combined. Fold in 1¼ cups of the whipped topping and spread in an even layer over the Oreo crust.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl (or the same one used for the Oreo crust), combine both chocolate instant pudding mixes with the 3¼ cups cold milk. Whisk until the pudding starts to thicken. This will take several minutes; be sure to scrape from the bottom as you whisk. Spread half of the pudding in an even layer over the cream cheese layer. Top with the chopped candies then pour over the remaining half of the pudding and smooth with a spatula. Let sit in the fridge for at least 5 minutes so the pudding can firm up more. Spread the remaining whipped topping over the pudding layer. Place in the fridge for 4 hours or the freezer for 1 hour before serving. Add the Halloween sprinkles right before serving (the colors on the sprinkles may run if you add them ahead of time).
Notes
If you would prefer to use fresh whipped cream instead of frozen whipped topping, follow this substitution. Beat 1¾ cups cold heavy cream (in a cold metal mixing bowl with a cold beater is preferred) with ¾ cup powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract until you have stiff peaks. This will make about 4 cups whipped cream.

Recipe from Genius Kitchen.

Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes

Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes  |  Lemon & Mocha

Halloween is next week! I love Halloween and I’m so excited to be sharing another festive Halloween treat with you. Last year I shared the Chocolate Marshmallow Monster Cookie Sandwiches and before that there were some Halloween Witches’ Cauldron Cupcakes. This year, we have Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes. Notice a theme? I’m clearly a chocoholic! These are moist chocolate cupcakes with a cream cheese frosting and easy DIY witch leg cupcake toppers. I saw these all over Pinterest and decided they were too cute not to make. I’ve added a link to download a handy free printable I made for you all to the bottom of this post so all you’ll have to do is print and cut out the little witch boots.

Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes  |  Lemon & Mocha

The cupcakes are my Perfect Chocolate Cupcakes and they really are the best chocolate cupcakes. I topped them with a neon green cream cheese frosting that’s not too sweet before adding the witch leg toppers. I’ve linked to the supplies I used below as well.

Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes  |  Lemon & Mocha

When I was growing up, my brother and I loved making haunted houses. If our family was having a party with family friends we would set up the haunted house in the basement. When we got older and no longer went trick-or-treating, my brother and I set up the haunted house in our garage so the trick-or-treaters could walk through it. We would go all out with the decorations and everyone in the family had a role, whether you were supposed to hide under a table and grab people’s legs as they walked by (usually me) or whether you were dressed up like a zombie (usually my brother). My brother was the creative one and my favorite design element was always the soundtrack tapes he would make. One year without my Dad knowing, my brother recorded my Dad bench pressing weights. My Dad’s grunting and the clanking of the metal weights made the best spooky sounds!

Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes  |  Lemon & Mocha

The funny part about all this is that I hate being scared. I don’t like going in haunted houses, going on spooky hay rides or watching scary movies. There is a haunted house ride at the boardwalk where we have our family beach week every summer and my cousin, who is six years younger than me, would try to reassure me during the ride and tell me to open my eyes! Apparently I love everything about haunted houses, except actually going in them! Do you love haunted houses or are they not your thing?

Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes  |  Lemon & Mocha

Matt and I are doing something a little different this year for Halloween – we will be flying to Tokyo, Japan! I’m so excited! Japan has been on our travel bucket list so we are heading to Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto. Don’t worry; I have plenty of posts scheduled while we’re away, but my access to internet and email will be limited so I may not respond to comments or emails until I return. In the meantime, I have some cozy dinner recipes coming for you this week so stay tuned!

Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes  |  Lemon & Mocha

Printables
Option 1: Print out a pair of witch boots and cut them out. Trace the pair of witch boots onto black construction paper, one pair traced for each cupcake, then cut out the pairs of witch boots. Get that printable here. The boots I made for these photos were made using black construction paper.
Option 2: Print out solid black witch boots with black ink from your printer. Cut them out. Get that printable here (print two copies).

Supplies Used:
Paper straws
Neon gel food dye
Cupcake liners
Round piping tip

Halloween Witch Chocolate Cupcakes
 
Yield: 24 cupcakes
Ingredients
for the witch leg toppers
  • 24 paper straws
  • 24 sets of witch boots, using printable and either black printer ink or black construction paper
  • Tape
for the chocolate cupcakes
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup cocoa powder
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk, see note
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup hot coffee, see note
for the cream cheese frosting
  • 12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 12 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 6 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Neon gel food dye
Directions
for the witch leg toppers
  1. Cut the straws in half.
  2. Cut out the witch boots. Use a small piece of tape that’s been rolled up to stick each boot to a straw half. Make sure the straw is coming out of the ankle of the boot. Make sure you have a left and right boot pointing out in opposite directions for each cupcake.
for the chocolate cupcakes
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two cupcake pans with cupcake liners so you have enough for 24 cupcakes.
  2. In a large mixing bowl or in the bowl of a stand mixer, sift together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, melted butter, vegetable oil and vanilla extract. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix together until smooth.
  4. Pour the hot coffee into the batter and stir until combined. The batter will be extremely liquidy. Divide the batter between the 24 cupcake liners, filling them slightly more than half full. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes back mostly clean. Alternatively, they are done when you gently press your finger on the center of a cupcake and it lightly springs back. I find mine to be done at exactly 19 minutes.
  5. Let cool in the pan for a couple minutes then remove to a wire cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.
for the cream cheese frosting
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large mixing bowl with a hand mixer, beat together the cream cheese and butter until fluffy, scraping down the sides as needed. Slowly beat in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract until combined. Add the food dye and mix, continue to add until the desired color is achieved.
  2. Pipe onto the cooled cupcakes and stick a pair of witch legs into each cupcake. Frosted cupcakes require refrigeration since cream cheese frosting has to be refrigerated. You may want to wait to put the toppers in until you are ready to serve them in case they get soggy or the coloring on the straw runs.
Notes
To make your own buttermilk: pour 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar in a liquid measuring cup. Pour milk, any fat percentage, into the measuring cup until you have 1 cup. Let sit for 5 minutes before using.
If you don’t want to use coffee you can use hot water, but the flavor of the chocolate won’t be as pronounced. You can use decaffeinated coffee if you prefer.
The cupcakes, unfrosted, freeze very well if you want to make them ahead of time.

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Chocolate Marshmallow Monster Cookie Sandwiches

Chocolate Marshmallow Monster Cookie Sandwiches  |  Lemon & Mocha

Boo! Look at these little monster cookie sandwiches! How cute are they? I’ve been wanting to make some special Halloween treats for a couple years now, but I haven’t made anything since these Witches’ Cauldron Cupcakes or these Leftover Halloween Candy Cookies. We always end up being away on my favorite month of the year – I guess that’s what happens when it’s your birthday month and your anniversary month!

Chocolate Marshmallow Monster Cookie Sandwiches  |  Lemon & Mocha

Even though it seemed like we were away for most of October this year I was determined to finally make a new Halloween treat. I scoured Instagram and Pinterest trying to find a chocolate dessert that wasn’t shaped like a spider, but I had no luck. So after being inspired by the candy monster eyes I had in my baking drawer (doesn’t everyone have candy monster eyes in their baking drawer?) I came up with these cuties.

Chocolate Marshmallow Monster Cookie Sandwiches  |  Lemon & Mocha

The best part is that they taste so good. Or maybe the worst part if you were hoping to not devour five of them and then not fit in your pants. That’s okay, go buy some leggings. Anyways, this is my first time making these sea salt dark chocolate cookies and it will definitely not be my last. I made them smaller so the cookies sandwiches wouldn’t be so big, but if you were making them just for cookie purposes you could double the size to two tablespoons of dough. The marshmallow filling has the right amount of sweetness and the creaminess balances nicely with the dark chocolate.

Chocolate Marshmallow Monster Cookie Sandwiches  |  Lemon & Mocha

So go ahead and make these tasty monster cookie sandwiches – no special decorating skills required! And have a happy Halloween!

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Also one recipe note that I want to point out in advance – the cookie dough needs to be made ahead of time. It has to chill for at least three hours so definitely plan ahead!

Chocolate Marshmallow Monster Cookie Sandwiches
 
Yield: 12 cookie sandwiches
Ingredients
for the cookies
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup cocoa powder
  • ⅓ cup Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup butter (1 stick), room temperature
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
  • Sea salt for sprinkling
for the filling
  • 7 ounce jar marshmallow fluff, about 2 ½ cups
  • ½ cup butter (1 stick), room temperature
  • ⅓ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • Neon gel food colors
  • Candy monster eyes
Directions
for the cookies
  1. In a medium bowl sift together the flour, both kinds of cocoa powder, the baking soda and salt. Stir to combine and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, mix the butter on medium speed until smooth, about one minute. Add the sugar and mix on medium-high speed until combined and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and mix on high speed until combined, scraping down the sides as needed.
  3. On low speed, carefully pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined. On high speed mix in the milk until combined, then the chocolate chips. The dough will be very thick and sticky (and tasty!). Avoid eating it so you have batter to make cookies with and put it in the fridge, covered, to chill for at least 3 hours or up to 3 days.
  4. When you’ve properly chilled the dough, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  5. Take the dough out of the fridge and let it sit for 20 minutes if it sat in the fridge for longer than 3 hours so it’s easier to scoop.
  6. Scoop 1 tablespoon of dough (I used the Oxo medium cookie scoop) and roll into a ball. Place it on the prepared baking sheet and repeat with the rest of the dough. I had 12 balls on each cookie sheet (maybe could have had more, but some dough got taste-tested). Sprinkle each cookie with a little bit of sea salt.
  7. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet before moving to a cooling rack. Let cool completely. If not frosting right away, store in an airtight container at room temperature.
for the filling
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl with a hand mixer, carefully combine the fluff, butter, powdered sugar, vanilla and salt on high speed. Once fluffy divide into smaller bowls depending on how many different colors you want to use. Add the food coloring and mix until the desired color is reached.
  2. Spread about a tablespoon of filling on a cookie then sandwich with another cookie. Continue until all cookies have been sandwiched. The filling is not very thick so do not put too much on or it will ooze out the sides. You could try thickening it with more powdered sugar, but I thought it would make it too sweet. Press monster eyes into the sides.
Notes
I prefer to use Ghirardelli chocolate chips, either their semi-sweet or their bittersweet.

Salted dark chocolate cookies from Sally’s Baking Addiction.
Marshmallow filling from Bakerita.

Halloween Recipe Roundup

Happy Halloween! I hope you have a delightfully spooky day full of festive decorations, scary movies, laughter and of course delicious food. To help give you a little Halloween inspiration I compiled a list of the best Lemon & Mocha recipes for your Halloween party, pre or post trick-or-treating meal, or quiet night at home. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays and that’s probably 99% due to my extreme love of candy. The rest is a result of all my great Halloween memories, such as dressing up in matching clown costumes with my dad, building a crazy haunted house with my brother and going on a nighttime ghost tour in Salem with Matt. So make some great memories this Halloween, as well as some tasty treats to go along with them!

Halloween Witches' Cauldron Cupcakes  |  Lemon & Mocha

Halloween Witches’ Cauldron Cupcakes. Spooky, whimsical and indulgent, these fun cupcakes will bring a smile to everyone’s faces- especially after they bite into them.

Pumpkin Hummus  |  Lemon & Mocha

Pumpkin Hummus. This smooth hummus is perfect with cinnamon pita chips. Could the color be any better for Halloween? Beautiful!

Croissant S'mores  |  Lemon & Mocha

Croissant S’mores. Use the leftover Hershey bars (or maybe even a Reese’s peanut butter cup!) to make these indoor croissant s’mores.

Spiced Sweet Potato & Apple Soup  |  Lemon & Mocha

Spiced Sweet Potato & Apple Soup. Cozy up with this flavorful and healthy spiced sweet potato and apple soup.

Leftover Halloween Candy Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Leftover Halloween Candy Cookies. Eating candy is great, but eating candy stuffed inside a chewy cookie? Way better!

Crispy Baked Kale Chips  |  Lemon & Mocha

Crispy Baked Kale Chips. Munch on a healthy snack that is crispy and salty to keep your hand out of the candy bowl.

Spiked Hazelnut Hot Chocolate  |  Lemon & Mocha

Spiked Hazelnut Hot Chocolate. Warm up with this velvety hot chocolate. Spiked for the adults and regular chocolately goodness for the kids!

Pumpkin Risotto with Roast Asparagus  |  Lemon & Mocha

Pumpkin Risotto with Roasted Asparagus. Load up on fall flavors with this pumpkin risotto with roasted asparagus. Perfect for filling up before a big trick-or-treat session.

Peanut Butter Apple Bars  |  Lemon & Mocha

Peanut Butter Apple Bars. My second ever Lemon & Mocha post, these peanut butter and apple bars scream fall, coziness and wow-pass-me-5-more-please.