Category Archives: Bake the World a Better Place

Nanaimo Bars

  Nanaimo Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Nanaimo Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

In prep for our next gift book, See the World…, we take you to Canada. This delicious Canadian treat is named after Nanaimo, British Columbia. It comprises of three delicious layers, all of which require no baking. There’s a bit of a wait between making layers, but it’s well worth it!Nanaimo Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Here are the ingredients for the first, bottom layer (photographed above):

-1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

-1/4 cup granulated white sugar

-1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

-1 large egg, lightly beaten

-1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

-2 cups graham cracker, crushed

-1 cup sweetened or unsweetened coconut (shredded or flaked)

-1/2 cup walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped

To make the bottom layer you will need to first melt the butter in a large saucepan over low heat. Once the butter has melted completely, remove from heat and add the sugar and cocoa powder. Stir. Now whisk the beaten egg in. Bring the saucepan back to low heat for another 1-2 minutes. Once the mixture has become thick, remove from heat and add the vanilla extra, crushed graham cracker, coconut, and walnuts. Stir until all the ingredients have mixed together. In a 9x9in prepared pan, spread the mixture evenly onto the bottom. Refrigerate for about an hour or until the mixture has become firm.

Nanaimo Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Ingredients to make the second, middle layer (photographed above):

-1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

-2 – 3 tablespoons milk or cream

-2 tablespoons vanilla custard powder or vanilla pudding powder

-1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

-2 cups powdered sugar

To make the second layer you will need to first beat the butter in an electric mixer (or hand mixer). Once the butter has become smooth and creamy you can go ahead and add the rest of the ingredients. Beat all of the ingredients until the mixture is smooth. Evenly add this mixture on top of the first layer. (Tip: If the mixture is too thick, add some milk). Refrigerate for about 30 minutes or until the second layer has become firm.

Nanaimo Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Ingredients to make the third, top layer (photographed above):

-1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

-1 tablespoon unsalted butter

To make the final layer you will need to put the chocolate chips and butter into a heat-safe bowl. Place this heat-safe bowl over a saucepan of simmering water.  Once it has completely melted, spread the final layer evenly on top.

Nanaimo Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Nanaimo Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

I’ve heard there are a bunch of different variations of the Nanaimo bar and after trying this one and falling in love with it I’m eager to try the others. I hope you enjoy this Canadian treat!

Pumpkin Trail Mix Bars

Pumpkin Trail Mix Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.comPumpkin Trail Mix Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

These pumpkin trail mix bars are the snack to bring along for a fall hike or to just snack on in between sips of pumpkin spiced latte.

Ingredients:

-4 cups oats

-½ cup vegetable oil

-½ cup honey

-½ cup pumpkin puree

-2 teaspoons cinnamon

-½ teaspoons salt

-1 1/3 cups sliced or slivered almonds

-½ cup pepitas

-11 ounces butterscotch chips

Steps:

1. In a large bowl, stir the oats and vegetable oil together.

2. Add the honey, pumpkin puree, cinnamon, salt, and stir together. (If you want them to be really sweet add ½ cup brown sugar)

3.  Add almonds and pepitas, stir.

4. Lastly, stir in the butterscotch chips

Pumpkin Trail Mix Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

5. Using your spatula, press the mixture down and evenly across a parchment lined cookie sheet.

6. Bake in oven at 325 degrees for 30 minutes.

7. Take out of oven, using your spatula, carefully press down mixture again and put in the oven for an additional 20 minutes. 

8. Let cool before cutting. When storing it is helpful to put parchment paper between each layer so the bars don’t stick together.

Pumpkin Trail Mix Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Pumpkin Trail Mix Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Pumpkin Trail Mix Bars | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Enjoy your pumpkin trail mix bars!

Bake the World a Better Place | www.gigglingcaravan.com

Check out our print Bake the World a Better Place! Just like our books, a portion of the proceeds from the sale of our prints benefit children charities. 

Simple Whoopie Pie

Simple Whoopie Pie | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

We’re baking treats and making dishes from around the world in excitement of our next book, See the World… (out November 2014).

There’s a lot of “we made it first” when it comes to the Whoopie Pie; Pennsylvania, Maine, and New Hampshire all say they are this treat’s birthplace. However, Maine decided to one up all the other states by making it their official state treat in 2011. Apparently, people take the whoopie pie very seriously. After you have a bite, you’ll understand why. Here’s is a really quick way to make whoopie pies using cake mix. Cake ingredients: 2 boxes of devil food’s cake mix, 4 eggs, and 1 ¼ cup shortening.

Simple Whoopie Pie | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

Prepare by lining a baking tray with parchment paper and preheating the oven to 375 degrees. Combine all of the cake ingredients and mix. The batter will be thick. Using a 1in ice-cream scooper, scoop the batter and place each about 2 inches apart. (A round tablespoon works perfect too. Just give it a few taps and the batter comes out in the perfect shape.) With a little water on your fingertips, smooth the surface out.  Bake for 8-10 minutes.Simple Whoopie Pie | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

Simple Whoopie Pie | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

Frosting ingredients: 4 cups of powdered sugar, 8 ounces of cream cheese, ½  cup butter, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt. Mix all the ingredients and place frosting into a piping bag. Frost the bottom side of one cookie and place a second cookie on top like a sandwich.Simple Whoopie Pie | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

This recipe makes about 24 whoopie pies. Too many whoopies? Just cut the recipe in half. If you’d like to get real professional you can make it from scratch and even purchase a whoopie pie tray! I hope you enjoy Maine’s official state treat!

Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.comLove baking? Check out our print Bake the World a Better Place! Just like our books, a portion of the proceeds from the sale of our prints benefit children charities. 

Cinnamon-Rhubarb Muffins

Cinnamon-Rhubarb Muffins | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

Even though it feels like summer, here in the northern hemisphere we’re still technically in the spring season for another week. So while spring is still here, you might as well take advantage of the spring veggies. Okay, I’m really only talking about one veggie here: rhubarb. Before baking these muffins, I couldn’t remember if I’ve even tried rhubarb before.  So we thought we should try rhubarb added into a sweet. We’re now officially obsessed with rhubarb added into sweets! We guarantee you’ll be obsessed too… or at least obsessed with these cinnamon-rhubarb muffins.

Cinnamon-Rhubarb Muffins | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

-2 cups all-purpose flour

-3/4 cup granulated sugar

-2 ½ tsp. baking powder

-1 tsp. ground cinnamon

-½ tsp. baking soda

-½ tsp. kosher salt

-1 cup sour cream

-8 tbs. butter, melted

-2 large eggs

-1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

-1 ½ cup diced rhubarb

Topping:

-3 tbs. granulated sugar

-½ tsp. ground cinnamon

Add the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Whisk the ingredients together. In a separate bowl, add the sour cream, slightly cooled melted butter, eggs, and vanilla extract. Whisk these ingredients well and pour the mixture into the bowl of dry ingredient. Stir. Add the diced rhubarb, stirring gently.

Cinnamon-Rhubarb Muffins | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

Add the batter into lined muffin cups, enough to where the batter comes a bit higher than the cups. In a small bowl mix the sugar and cinnamon together. Sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar topping on top of each unbaked muffin. Bake at 400F until golden brown, about 18-20 minutes.

Cinnamon-Rhubarb Muffins | Bake the World a Better Place www.gigglingcaravan.com

If you were like us and never had rhubarb before, definitely try it out while the veggie is still in season! I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised! (If you already know you totally hate rhubarb, just leave it out…  these make great cinnamon muffins.)

Bake the World a Better Place

Check out this printable at our Etsy shop!