Maple Tamari Roasted Almonds

Maple Tamari Roasted Almonds

I have to find clever ways to NOT buy a bag of potato chips at the grocery store.  By ‘clever’ I mean I just don’t go down the chip aisle.  It’s my danger zone.  I know that if I do, I’ll likely eat potato chips for lunch and dinner that day, and repeat that same process for probably three days straight.  

I like salt and crunch.  I really like potato chips.  More than most.  More than many.  

I have to find creative ways to satiate my salt-tooth (like a sweet-tooth but different), and that means making my own gobble-able snack.  

These salty tamari and maple roasted almonds are all the spicy, salt, sweet, and crunch I need.  They’re not potato chips but… well, not even close but dang good, healthy and satisfying.  

Did I mention that I really like potato chips?  Just checking… 

Maple Tamari Roasted Almonds

Simple things to start.  Raw almonds, tamari which is a gluten-free soy sauce, pure maple syrup (the good stuff is preferred), and a good squeeze of sriracha pepper sauce for spice.  

Salt and pepper, too.  Always with those.  

Maple Tamari Roasted Almonds

The tamari, maple, sriracha, and a dash of salt and pepper are stirred together in a small bowl.  I also added a splash of olive oil because a little extra good fat never hurt anyone (probably not true, but still).  

Maple Tamari Roasted Almonds

The almonds are roasted in the oven dry… just the almonds and the pan.  This will help ensure that they’re crunchy and full of intense almond flavor when they come out of the oven the second time.  Building layers of flavor like it’s our job.  

Maple Tamari Roasted Almonds

Warm roasted almonds are stirred and covered in the sweet and spicy tamari sauce.  

Maple Tamari Roasted Almonds

Double roasted, extra salty from tamari and sea salt, and extra spicy from sriracha and black pepper.  Sweet, too… because I like a little sweet with my salt.  

All of these flavorful nuts to cool before eating for maximum crunch and minimum mouth burns.  These are things I learned the hard way.  

Maple Tamari Roasted Almonds

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Prep Time
10 min

Cook Time
25 min

Prep Time
10 min

Cook Time
25 min

  1. 1 pound raw almonds
  2. 3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
  3. 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  4. 1 teaspoon olive oil
  5. 1/2 teaspoon sriracha sauce
  6. sea salt to taste
  7. fresh cracked black pepper to taste
  1. Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Linea rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the almonds in an even layer across the sheet.
  3. Roast almonds for 12 to 15 minutes, or until browned and fragrant.
  4. While the almonds roast, in a small bowl whisk together tamari, maple syrup, olive oil, and sriracha.
  5. Remove the toasted almonds from the oven and pour the tamari mixture over the warm almonds. Toss until all of the almonds are lightly coated in tamari. Sprinkle with salt and black pepper and return to the oven to roast for another 12 to 15 minutes, tossing once during baking.
  6. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with a bit more salt and pepper and allow to cool before serving.
  7. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Maple Syrup Pancake Muffins

Maple Syrup Pancake Muffins

What is it with me?  I’m always taking things too far.  I’m obsessed.

Yes… so I love pancakes.  This much you know is true.  But pancakes turned into muffins?  Really?  I’m a nut job.

Oh me.  Oh my.

Is there some sort of support group for pancake addiction?

Maple Syrup Pancake Muffins

Maple Syrup Pancake Muffins

Maple Syrup Pancake Muffins

Essentially, with these muffins, we’re talking about a browned butter muffin with a beautiful sticky maple glaze.

The best part about these beauties is that you can add anything you like to them… just as you would pancakes.

Blueberry Pancake Muffins?  Milk Chocolate Chip Pancake Muffins?  Cinnamon Pancake Muffins?  Crispy Bacon Pancake Muffins?  If you can dream it up, you can probably put it in this muffin.  Super yum!

Maple Syrup Pancake Muffins

Maple Syrup Pancake Muffins

makes 12 glorious muffins

Print this Recipe!

for the muffins:

7 Tablespoons unsalted butter

1/3 cup whole milk

1 large egg

1 large egg yolk

1 Tablespoon maple syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

For the Maple Glaze:

3/4 cup pure maple syrup

1 Tablespoon lemon juice

Put a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Line muffin pan with paper or foil liners

Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Keep an eye on the butter.  Melt and cook down the butter until little brown bits appear in the pan.  The crackling will subside and butter will begin to brown fairly quickly after that.  Keep a close eye.  Remove from heat.

Whisk milk, egg, yolk, maple syrup, and vanilla until combined.  Add the brown butter and stir to combine.

Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl  Add milk and butter mixture all at one and stir gently to combine.

Divide the batter among muffin cups and spread evenly.

Bake until golden and crisp and a wooden pick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean, about 18-20 minutes.

While the muffins are baking make the maple glaze.

In a small saucepan simmer maple syrup and lemon juice, stirring occasionally, until reduced to a thick (thicker than maple syrup) syrup.  This will take about 15 minutes over a low flame.

Remove from heat and wait for the muffins to finish baking.  When muffins are out of the oven and cool enough to handle, poke a few holes in the muffin top with a toothpick and dip each muffin top in the maple glaze.  After dipping all twelve muffins, start with the first muffin you dipped and dip each muffin again.

Maple Blueberry Scones

maple blueberry scones

This is an exercise in restraint.  I made Blueberry Scones without bacon, without lemon zest, without goat cheese, without toasted coconut flakes, without white chocolate chips.

Ok… the more things I mention, the more things I want to shove into these precious breakfast treats.  No, Joy.  Just let a Blueberry Scone be what it is.

I have a history of additions as evidenced by these Feta and Chive Sour Cream Scones and Peach Cobbler Scones (ooh summer…).

maple blueberry scones

Ps.  Ok… so I added a bit of maple and a touch of nutmeg to these biscuits.  These aren’t fancy additions… they’re mostly staples in my life.  I carry a jar of maple syrup in my purse.  I have nutmeg in my pocket.  Totally normal.  No big deal.

maple blueberry scones

Once you’ve made one scone, you’ve made them all.  That’s almost true.

This is where we marry cold butter and dry ingredients.  I use my fingers to break the butter up into the flour.  Maple syrup and buttermilk are on the sidelines for future support.

maple blueberry scones

While breaking the butter into the flour, I realized I forgot an egg.  Ok… I also forgot to add salt.

This was pre-coffee scone making.  That’s just begging for disaster.

maple blueberry scones

Wet ingredients are combined with dry ingredients.  A big spoon will bring it all together.

maple blueberry scones

I splurged on fresh blueberries (yea… sometimes this feels like a splurge) for this recipe.  You can totally use frozen blueberries, just make sure to thaw and drain them first.  Also, with frozen berries, your scones might be a bit more blue.

maple blueberry scones

After a bit of kneading, the scone dough comes together.  I leave the rolling pin in the kitchen.  Just pressing with my fingers does the job.  This is a blessing on mornings when baking comes before caffeine.

maple blueberry scones

Round cutters.  Round scones.  Blueberries everywhere.

maple blueberry scones

You know how Jennifer Aniston looks effortlessly beautiful in just a jeans and t-shirt?  It’s true.  Think about it.  She’s gorgeous.  These scones rival her fresh face in tender deliciousness.  They’re earnest, are studded with blueberry pockets, and are most tremendous served warm with jam.

Also, a quick FYI… yea, people are still talking about Jennifer Aniston.  Be cool.  Get at these scones.

Maple Blueberry Scones

makes about 12 scones

Print this Recipe!

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, but into small cubes

1 large egg, lightly beaten

2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

3/4 cup cold buttermilk

1 cup fresh blueberries (you can used thawed and drained berries from the freezer although the scones will have a more purple color)

3 tablespoons buttermilk for brushing the tops of the scones before baking

granulated sugar for sprinkling on top before baking

Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pinch of nutmeg, and salt.  Cut in butter (using your fingers or a pastry cutter) until mixture resembles a coarse meal.  Work the butter into the dry ingredients until some of the butter flakes are the size of peas and some are the size of oat flakes.    In another bowl, combine egg, maple syrup, and milk and beat lightly with a fork.  Add to flour mixture all at once, stirring enough to make a soft dough.  Fold in the blueberries.

Turn out onto a floured board and knead about 15 times.  Roll or pat out into a 1-inch thickness.  Cut into 2-inch rounds using a round cutter or cut into 2×2-inch squares.  Reshape and roll dough to create more scones with excess scraps.    Place on an ungreased baking sheet.  Brush lightly with buttermilk and sprinkle with granulated sugar.   Bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown on top.  Serve warm.  Scones are best the day they’re made, and though they can be frozen and lightly reheated in the oven if you need a future treat.    

Maple Blueberry Syrup


This blueberry syrup was inspired by… living!

This blueberry syrup was inspired by surprise sunny afternoons in Washington state.  This sweet syrup was inspired by cart wheels in the grass… when you think you might be too old for cartwheels anywhere.  It’s inspired by neighbor horses, nephew cats, and ferry boat rides.  It is inspired by a Sunday afternoon visit to Vashon Island to see Gluten-free Girl and the Chef… we shared a meal, fed a horse, and entertained each other by dancing the the grass like stone-cold maniacs.  It felt just like sweet sweet summer.

seattle 2012

seattle 2012

Charles, you’re a fine gentleman.  Thank you for taking such good care of my little sister in Seattle.

seattle 2012

Alone on a ferry.

Feels good and smells like going places.

seattle 2012

Boat ropes.

I want this to be jewelry.

seattle 2012

Vashon is green and romantic.

I feels like a lot of frogs and artists live here.

seattle 2012

Vashon has all the room in the world for shed-side conversations and cartwheels.

seattle 2012

You know you’re among your people when this happens…

seattle 2012

… and when the beauty of simple things is amplified…

seattle 2012

… and you’re welcomed with eggs, peas, and goat cheese.

… and you can go back for a second helping without even asking.


In Vashon, Shauna and Danny had a lovely jar of rose colored rhubarb syrup made for their homemade sodas.  That seemed like just the ticket.

A syrup that’s simple, versatile and super summery.

I used frozen blueberries, because they’re easy and cost effective.  I paired the frozen berries with filtered water, a good squeeze of lemon, and a small handful of mint leaves.


After a good boiling, a good straining, and another good boiling… this syrup is reduced from 3 cups to 2 cups.

It’s maple and blueberry sweet.

This syrup is wonderful paired with ice cold soda water.  Add a splash of almond milk for a vegan Italian Soda.

Blueberry syrup is also bonkers delicious poured over vanilla ice cream.

And if you’re thinking that this syrup is perfect on pancakes… you’re 100% correct.

It’s beautiful out in the world… I hope you’re out in it, living well!

Maple Blueberry Syrup

makes 2 cups

Print this Recipe!

3 cups water

1 (16-ounce) bag frozen blueberries, thawed of still frozen is fine.

juice of half a lemon

small handful of fresh mint leaves

1/2 cup maple syrup

soda water

In a saucepan, combine water, frozen blueberries, lemon juice (and why not toss in the entire half of lemon), mint leaves, and maple syrup.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes.  Remove from heat and strain through a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl.  Using a spatula, press the blueberries into the strainer, releasing any juices.  Return the warm, strained liquid to the saucepan.  Bring to a boil once again, reduce heat and simmer for about 20-30 minutes, until syrup is reduced to 2 cups of liquid.

Place in a jar and allow to cool in the refrigerator.

To make blueberry soda, add a few tablespoons of blueberry syrup to iced soda water.  Enjoy!  

Gluten-free Toasted Coconut Waffles with maple cream


I’m totally on a gluten-free kick.

… and it’s all because of coconut flour.

I am a master of all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, pastry flour, and… gi-normous bowls of pasta.  I’ve packed gluten-free-free food items into every meal for ever and ever.  Delicious.

But then coconut flour came along… and not I’m totally obsessed.


Coconut flour is high in fiber, and has a good amount of protein.  It’s a very absorbent flour, so you’ll use much much less coconut flour than you would all-purpose flour.  It thickens a batter even as it’s just being stirred into the wet ingredients.  Why?  Fiber?  Fiber is absorbent, and good for you.  Duh.

Coconut flour also has a slight sweetness to it.  It’s really a cool, and approachable alternative to all-purpose flour.  If you’re thinking that you might want to take on a bit of gluten-free baking… coconut flour is the way to go.  I like Bob’s Red Mill Coconut Flour… and they didn’t pay me to say that… they just make great flours.

Try new things!  They’re delicious!


These waffles have two kinds of coconut (three if you count the flour) (wait… four if you count the oil):  shredded and flaked.

Maybe I’m a coconut fiend.  No biggie.


The coconut batter is thickening right now!  Riiiiight now!  It’s magic.


Thick golden coconut waffles.

They’re dense, but soft.  These waffles aren’t too sweet, and really… if you didn’t tell your husband they were gluten-free, he would NEVER know.  Promise.


I like to top everything with syrup and cream.

So… obviously.

These coconut waffles are absolutely divine with maple sweetened whipped cream aaaand a generous drizzle of maple syrup.  And more coconut.

Happy Breakfast!

Gluten-free Toasted Coconut Waffles with maple cream

makes 2 sheets of square waffles in a 8 1/2-inch waffle maker,  serves about 3

Print this Recipe!

For the waffles:

1/3 cup sweetened or unsweetened shredded coconut, toasted

4 tablespoons melted coconut oil, or unsalted butter

6 large eggs

1/4 cup agave nectar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/3 cup coconut flour

2 tablespoon mashed bananas (i forgot to buy bananas and used peanut butter)

1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes, toasted (if you don’t want to use flakes in addition to shredded coconut, just top your waffles with more shredded coconut)

For the maple cream:

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.

Place coconut on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for about 4 minutes.  Keep an eye on the coconut, it browns and burns quickly.

Remove toasted coconut from the oven and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together coconut oil, eggs, agave nectar, vanilla extract, and mashed bananas.  Whisk until well incorporated.

In a small bowl, whisk together the coconut flour, salt, and baking soda.  Work the mixture with your fingers to ensure that the coconut flour doesn’t have any lumps in to.

Whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.  Mixture will begin to thicken as you whisk.  Add the toasted, shredded coconut and whisk to incorporate.  Allow mixture to sit for 5 minutes while you plug in and preheat the waffle iron.

I have an 8 1/2-inch square waffle iron, and this recipe made 2 waffle sheets.  I divided the batter in two to bake them up.

To make the maple cream, whisk together heavy cream and maple syrup, in a medium bowl, until soft peaks form.  Easy.

Bake up waffles, and serve warm with maple cream and toasted coconut flakes.

Almost No-Bake Pumpkin Cream Pie with Maple Whipped Cream


I feel like Thanksgiving is an experiment in just how many things you can jam into your oven in a two day period.

Turkey.  Other birds.  Stuffing.  Yams.  Green beans.  Pie.  Cakes.  Owls.  Ash trays.  Lasagna.  Kittens.  Ravioli.  Squashes.

I mean…. Seriously.  That’s a full oven.

Because I only want to partially horn in on that oven action, I’ve made an Almost No-Bake Pumpkin Cream Pie.

When you call it Aaaaalllllmost No-Bake Pie, it’s actually a Not No-Bake Pie.  We’re working with a passive aggressive double negatives here.  My apologies.



This pie is exactly what I want it to be.  Pretty.  Delicious… and full of my Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice.  The crust is crushed up crisp ginger snaps mixed with a bit of sugar and butter.  Divine.  The filling is creamy pumpkin comfort.  The topping is Maple Whipped Cream.

That’s exactly three layers of Autumn flavors.



I made this pie in a standard pie dish, but after I struggled so much getting the crust and the slices out in decent looking pieces… I think a tart pan with a removable bottom or in eight individual ramekins would work wonderfully.  Just thought you might like options.


Also!  If you buy one of those pre-made graham cracker pie crusts from the grocery store, then this pie is totally a No-Bake situation.  Are you into that sort of thing?  No judgement.

Face it.  Pies are pretty.

Almost No-Bake Pumpkin Cream Pie

makes one 9-inch pie or tart or 8 individual ramekin pies

Print this Recipe!

For the Crust:

1 1/2 cups finely crushed graham crackers or crisp ginger snap cookies

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

pinch of salt

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

For the Filling:

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

1 teaspoon molasses

2 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree

For Topping:

1 cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

For the Crust:

In a medium bowl, combine crushed graham crackers or ginger snaps with sugar, salt and melted butter.  Toss together to coat the entire mixture in butter.  Press into a 9-inch baking dish, a tart pan with a removable bottom or 8 individual ramekins.  I like making these no bake desserts in a tart pan or in individual ramekins so I don’t have to fuss with fighting to remove the sliced pie from the pie pan.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven and cool completely before adding the filling.

To make the Filling:

Beat cream cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric stand mixer until smooth and creamy.  Both fats should be well softened to ensure the filling is lump free.  Add the powdered sugar to the mixture and beat until smooth and fluffy.  Add the vanilla extract, molasses, pumpkin pie spice and pumpkin puree and beat until thoroughly combined.  If you find that your filling is lumpy, pass it through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl.  I did that.  No shame in that game.

Spoon the filling into the cooled pie or tart shell, or divide into individual ramekins.  Let pie chill in the fridge overnight.  This is actually important… the pie won’t be settled enough in 2 hours.  Overnight is best.

To Make the Topping:

Beat together heavy cream and maple syrup until cream is in soft peaks.  Spread over the chilled pie and sprinkle with more maple syrup just before slicing.  Slice and serve.

Maple, White Chocolate and Cherry Oatmeal Cookies

maple, cherry, white chocolate and oatmeal cookies

Alright Alright Aaaalllllright!  This whole 2013 business is real.  There’s no denying it.  We’re seven days in… and there’s just no stopping this year from happening.  That, in fact, is a total blessing.

January is such a strange month.  I can’t be the only one that thinks so.

Half of my friends are majorly enthusiastic about their New Year’s resolutions.  I am in total support of this… I’m just bummed that we can’t have drinks because they’re on a juice cleanse.  Half of my friends are freaking out about Valentine’s Day, and I firmly believe that it’s a) TOO SOON, and b) we’re totally too old to freak out about that holiday.  The last half of my friends (because I have three-halves of friends) are so majorly task driven that they’re emailing the world into oblivion.

In other words… help!  Where is the room for cookies in this odd summation of friends?

I’m glad you’re here.  Let’s just take this goodness in together.

ps.  HAPPY (dang) NEW YEAR!

maple, cherry, white chocolate and oatmeal cookies

Truth be told, these cookies were just an excuse to buy white chocolate.  As if I need an excuse.

In these cookies, white chocolate is combined with tart dried cherries and sweet, enticing maple syrup.

Pancake syrup will not do for these cookies.  We’re talking about real-deal maple syrup.  The stuff that comes from trees.

maple, cherry, white chocolate and oatmeal cookies

Old-fashioned oats and a hearty amount of cinnamon.

These cookies are homemade, salt-of-the-earth cookies.

maple, cherry, white chocolate and oatmeal cookies

Maple syrup adds a really lovely round sweetness to the cookies… different from granulated sugar,

It’s a round sweetness that feels like it comes from trees… because it does.

maple, cherry, white chocolate and oatmeal cookies

I like to guarantee that my cookies have white chocolate and dried cherry visible on the top of the cookie after they’ve finished baking.

For this reason, I add a chunk of dark chocolate and a single dried cherry to the top of the cookie dough before baking.

I appreciate a sure thing.

maple, cherry, white chocolate and oatmeal cookies

These cookies might be considered mega-ultras.  The oatmeal cookies are crisp around the edges and soft through the center.  The brown sugar and maple syrup give these cookies an extra rich flavor.  The cherries and white chocolate are just icing on the cake… so to speak.  If you’re not a fan of white chocolate and cherries, pecans and dark chocolate would bake an incredible substitute.

These cookies are miraculous straight out of the oven.  They’re delicious a few hours after baking… a few days after baking… and they’re even a good cookie to ship across the country.

In other cookie related business, you might consider:

Dark Chocolate, Pistachio, and Smoked Sea Salt Cookies

Lemon Meringue Cookies


Cappuccino Cookies with Espresso and White Chocolate 

You know… just a (cookie) thought.

Maple, White Chocolate and Cherry Oatmeal Cookies

makes just over 2 dozen cookies

adapted from Big Fat Cookie Book

Print this Recipe!

1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup pure maple syrup

1 3/4 cups old-fashioned uncooked oatmeal

3/4 cup dried cherries

1 cup white chocolate chunks

Place racks in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and ground cinnamon.  Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, combine butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar.  Beat on medium-low speed until thoroughly combined and slightly fluffy, about 3 to 5 minutes.  Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating for 1 minute between each addition.  Add vanilla extract and maple syrup and beat to combine.

Add the flour mixture and beat just until incorporated.  Fold in oats, dried cherries, and white chocolate chunks.  Stir until thoroughly combined.

Spoon batter onto prepared pans by the heaping tablespoonful.  Leave  about 2 inches of space between cookies.  Bake cookies for 10 to 12 minutes, or until beautifully golden brown throughout.  Remove from the oven and cool cookies on the sheet for 5 minutes.  Remove cookies from the pan and allow to cool on a wire rack.

Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to four days. 

Maple Bacon Kettle Corn



Things that I’m really good at:

cooking bacon, eating popcorn, writing on graph paper, text messaging, and typing simple equations into my calculator.

Things that I really suck at:



I already have a serious problem with kettle corn.


A few months back I ate only kettle corn for a week straight.

You think I’m kidding.  I’m not.


Now I’ve gone and cooked the kettle corn in bacon fat and added crisp bacon bits and maple syrup.

This can’t end well.


It will surely end with one sticky computer.

Oh well.?

Maple Bacon Kettle Corn

Print this Recipe!

4 slices bacon, cooked, fat reserved

1 tablespoon maple syrup

1/2 cup corn kernels

1/4 cup cooking fat (use the reserved bacon fat and extra olive or vegetable oil to make 1/4 cup of popcorn cooking fat)

3 Tablespoons sugar

1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons salt (depending on your taste)

Cook off bacon until brown and crisp.  Set aside to cool.  Once cool, chop into small bits and toss with maple syrup.

Carefully measure out the hot bacon grease.  If you don’t have 1/4 cup of fat, add some vegetable or canola oil to make 1/4 cup of oil for cooking the popcorn.

In a large pan over medium high heat, heat the bacon fat and oil mixture.  Add the corn kernels.  Sprinkle over the sugar and 1 teaspoon of salt.  Cover the pan with a tight fitting lid and wait for the popping to begin.

Once the popping begins, use two good pot holders the hold together the pan and the lid and shake the pot.  Feel free to take the pot off the flame to give it a good shake.  Just be careful and then return the pot to the flame.  Shake often throughout the popping process.  This will help ensure that the sugar doesn’t burn the pan and the popcorn.

Once finished popping remove the lid and salt with 1/2 to 1 teaspoon more salt.  Use a large spoon to stir the popcorn.  You don’t want the hope sugar to burn you.  Pour in the bacon and maple mixture.  Toss together and serve.

Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts with maple glaze


I didn’t know Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts existed before I thought them up and went running to my kitchen.

Turns out they do exist… and they existed all over my kitchen counter before they stopped existing because I ate them all.

Ok.  Not true.  I didn’t eat them aalllll.  I shared… but I really didn’t want to.


Kinda cool, right!?  Are you gonna make these or what?


Just so we’re clear, what we’re dealing with here is two squares (ok.. yea.. rectangles) of buttery dough, stuffed with spiced pumpkin pie filling.


Pumpkin pie used to be on the list of things that I hated… along with the first day of school, boys, eggplant and spiders.


It would seem that pumpkin pie has grown on me.

… I’ve also developed a fondness for boys.


But the first day of school, eggplant and spiders call all just suck an egg.

Is that an expression?


I found this little gentleman on my front porch while I was baking up these pop tarts.



I busted out the ruler for this recipe, but I still ended up with slightly wonky tarts.  Precision isn’t my deal.


Luckily butter and flour still taste good, even when they’re crooked.



My Great Aunt Mary stopped by for a visit while I was baking.  She’s approximately 74 times more awesome than you and me.  She’s traveled all over the world.  Literally.  Everywhere.  She likes bus tours.  She loves margaritas and cookies.  She can sew like a stone cold maniac…. and she wears teal trousers.

Man… she’s so cool.


Of course I gave her one of these tarts to take home.  It was the right thing to do.

Are you totally obsessed with pumpkin?  Yea… me too:

Vegan Pumpkin Walnut Bread

Super Soft Pumpkin Cookies

Pumpkin Pie Bars

Pumpkin and Butternut Squash Soup

Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts with Maple Glaze

makes 9 tarts

crust recipe from King Arthur Flour

Print this Recipe!

For the Crust:

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, cold, cut into cubes

1 large egg

2 tablespoons milk

1 large egg (for brushing the dough)

For the Filling:

3/4 cup pureed pumpkin

1 large egg

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup granulated sugar

Maple Glaze:

1 cup powdered sugar

2 teaspoons maple syrup

2 tablespoons milk

To prepare the Crust:

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar and salt.  Add the cold butter and break it up in the flour mixture using your fingers, a pastry cutter or a food processor.  There may seem like there’s a ton of butter in your flour.  There is.   Work it in until only pea sized lumps remain in your mixture.  The mixture should also hold together when squeezed into a ball.

In a small bowl, beat the egg with the milk.  Add the mixture all at once to the dry ingredients and stir to make sure that moisture is introduced to all of the flour mixture.  Lightly dust a clean counter with flour and knead the dough on the floured counter for a few turns until it really starts to come together.  Divide the dough in two, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.  I find that the dough is just a bit easier to work with when it’s chilled.

While the dough is chilling, prepare the filling:

In a small sauce pan, heat pumpkin puree and spices over medium heat.  Just heat through until the spices become fragrant.  This helps to bring loads of flavor into the filling.  Remove from heat and place spiced pumpkin in a medium sized bowl.  Whisk in egg, salt and sugar and place in the fridge to rest while you roll out the dough.

On a well floured work surface, press dough into a 3×5-inch rectangle, roll the dough out to about 1/8-inch thickness.  The dough should be slightly larger than 9×12-inches.  Trim dough with a pizza cutter, creating a rectangle that is 9-inches tall and 12-inches long.  Using the pizza cutter, cut each side into thirds, creating 9 squares.  Place dough squares in the fridge while you roll out the second piece of dough in the same way.

Brush one set of 9 squares with beaten egg.  This will act as the glue for the top layer of dough.  Spoon about one tablespoon of pie filling into the center of each brushed dough square.  Top with a piece of dough and use a floured fork to crimp the sides closed.  Use the tines of the fork to create vent holes in each tart.

Position a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.  Let tarts rest in the fridge for 30 minutes while the oven preheats.

Remove tarts from the fridge and place in the oven to bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden brown on top.

While the tarts bake, whisk together ingredients for the glaze and set aside.

Let baked tarts rest on a cooling rack to cool completely before glazing.  Best served within 2 days.

Gluten-free Banana Breakfast Dumplings with Vanilla Bean Maple Butter


Let’s do a thing.  Let’s call it breakfast.  Let’s call it dumplings.  Let’s call it another awesome giveaway!!

A breakfast dumpling is the what you might call a thick, fluffy, too-thick-and-fluffy-for-its-own-good pancake.  It’s a sweet and tender combination that involves sugar, carbs, and ripe bananas.  It’s a bit of breakfast genius.  It’s too good to remain on a plate.  It’s nap inducing.

To make matters that much more awesome, these breakfast dumplings are paired with a giveaway!  Get right on into it!

This summer I partnered with Lost Crates.  Lost Crates is a gift subscription program that ships off awesome curated gift crates every month.  It’s my way of sharing some of the products and companies that I love with you… every month… in your mailbox.

I explain all the details of Lost Crates here on Joy the Baker… or your could go straight to the Lost Crates source.

Lost Crates and I want you to be a part of the good times!

Giveaway Alert:  3 lucky readers will win a four-month subscription to Lost Crates!  That means you get monthly gifts until the end of the year.  Giveaway details to follow.  First let’s talk breakfast dumplings.



To be fair, this giveaway is a bit of a spoiler alert.  See… this recipe includes all of September’s Lost Crates gifts.  I partnered with Cup4Cup Gluten-Free Flour and Beanilla Trading Company.


I’ve chewed your ear off about how much I adore Cup4Cup Gluten-Free Flour.

I’ve made a wonderful Asparagus Quiche, and some savory Lunch Waffles with Prosciutto and Green Apple that just won’t quit.  This flour is a baking staple in my kitchen and makes gluten-free baking a no-brainer for me.  You can find Cup4Cup Flour here.

I want to spread the love… thus, we crated the flour.


Banana seems like a simple and obvious addition to any and all breakfast item (save the infamous Breakfast Nacho).  In this dumpling recipe, the bananas add a delicious moisture to our breakfast situation.  Cinnamon makes sense in conjunction with the banana.  We’re building classic flavors of morning breakfast love.

Should you feel inclined to add a dash of rum or bourbon, I’d totally understand (and high-five you) (and invite myself over for breakfast).


Can we talk about vanilla beans?  Ok, seriously… there are about a million places to buy vanilla beans online (Amazon, I’m looking at you…).

I happen to super love Beanilla Trading Company.  They offer some seriously high quality vanilla beans.  I love that you can buy a few beans at a time, trying out different types from around the world.  If you’re a vanilla bean nerd like me, you’re way into this.

I’m partial to the Madagascar and Tahitian from Beanilla.  For real.

With my beans I made a bonkers breakfast sauce. It combines everything breakfast-delicious (excluding bacon).  It’s a warm and melty combination of real maple syrup, melted butter, and vanilla beans.  The sauce was inspired by Clinton Street Baking Company.  Few things are more divine.


Let’s talk giveaway details!  I want you all up in this Joy the Baker Lost Crates situation.  We really love making packages for you and want to share!

To enter this giveaway simply leave a comment on this post.  Sign up for a JtB Lost Crate and you’re entered into the giveaway twice.

Should you enter the giveaway and already be a Lost Crates subscriber, two awesome things happen:  you win a bonus prize (a signed Joy the Baker Cookbook), and we’ll transfer your winnings so you receive gifts until December at no charge.

Giveaway is open until Friday, September 7th at midnight PST.  This giveaway is open to US residents only.  Not to worry… more international giveaway are in our future!

xo!  Happy Breakfasting!

Gluten-free Banana Breakfast Dumplings with Vanilla Bean Maple Butter

makes about 16 dumplings

Print this Recipe!

1 1/4 cup Cup4Cup Gluten-free Flour

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 large egg

1 tablespoons melted unsalted butter

1 teaspoon pure Beanilla Mexican vanilla extract

1 cup buttermilk

1 ripe banana, mashed

oil or butter for frying the dumplings

Vanilla Bean Maple Butter

1/2 cup pure maple syrup

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold

1 Tahitian vanilla bean, seeds scraped

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.  In a large measuring cup, beat together buttermilk, egg, melted butter, and vanilla extract. Pour the wet ingredients all at once into the dry ingredients and stir together until just incorporated and no flour patches remain.  Fold in mashed banana.  Allow to rest for 5 minutes while the skillet heats up.

Place a nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Add a generous teaspoon of oil or butter and allow to heat.

Pour 2 Tablespoons of batter onto the griddle.  I used a small cookie scoop.  Cook on the first side until the underside is golden brown.  Carefully clip dumpling and cook until golden brown and dumpling is mostly cooked through.  Try not to flatten the top of the dumpling but leave it tall and doughy.  Let cooked dumplings rest on a heat proof plate in a 200 degree F oven until ready to serve.  Serve warm with Vanilla Bean Maple Butter.

To make the Vanilla Bean Maple Butter, heat maple syrup in a small sauce pan.  In a small bowl, smash together butter and vanilla bean.  This will help the butter soften slightly, and help work and stubborn clumps out of the vanilla bean seeds.  Slowly whisk bits of vanilla butter into the warm maple syrup.  Keep the temperature low; the maple syrup should never boil.  Whisk to emulsify then set aside while dumplings fry.  Serve warm.