Caramel Toffee Chocolate Dipped Cookies

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Dipped Cookies
That’s a pretty flavorful title, huh?

Caramel.

Toffee.

And chocolate.

All packed into a single soft and chewy cookie. Please excuse me as I wipe the drool off my keyboard. Oh, would you like a napkin too? Here, borrow mine.

Would you believe that this tasty title wasn’t actually my first choice? It’s true, it totally wasn’t. The original title was much too long, and if we are being completely honest, there wouldn’t have been a napkin big enough to clean up the drool spill that would have ensued.

I see that look in your eyes. You want to know the title don’t you? Luckily for you, I’m in the business of giving the people what they want. So, here goes. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Caramel & Milk Chocolate Toffee Swirled Ooey Gooey Soft & Chewy Cookies Dipped in Milk Chocolate.
Caramel Toffee Chocolate Dipped Cookies
Pretty delicious sounding, right? Okay, maybe you didn’t drool, but you can definitely see what I mean about the length. And, I’m betting you are (or, at least highly considering) moving this recipe to the top of your To Bake List. Do yourself a favor, move it to the top. There will be no regret.

In fact, Matt (my brother) claims these are the best cookies I have ever made. Well, his exact words were: “These are probably the best things you’ve ever made. Seriously, the amount of flavor and softness in this cookie, much better than some of that cardboard sh*t you’ve made.” Yeah, I live with some hard critics. And, no, I don’t think anything I’ve ever made tastes like cardboard. Definitely an exaggeration on his part, but I’ll let you be the judge of that. Feel free to stop by for a taste testing of my baking skills any time you’d like. You’re always welcome.

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Dipped Cookies
I want to tell you about this cookie recipe. I dreamed up the flavor combination about two weeks ago. So, why did I wait so long to actually make them, you ask? Two reasons. Weirdly, they both start with an h. The first is hockey.

I have become a hockey fan. Like, a pretty big hockey fan. And no, it’s not just because the Stanley Cup Playoffs are happening right now. Or, because my best friend since the fourth grade is the biggest hockey fan I know and has been trying to get me to like hockey for years. And, it’s not even because I went to a playoff game a few weeks ago and fell completely in love with a hockey player (seriously, go look up Tyler Seguin. Isn’t he just beautiful? Yes, he is at the top of my celebrity crush list. Don’t judge me.). It’s because I like the sport. It’s fast paced, it’s exciting to watch, and even though I’m not a violent person, I think it’s pretty awesome that hockey players can just start fighting in the middle of the game. It takes talent to throw a punch while wearing ice skates. I, for one, am impressed.

The second reason is the heat. I’m all in for some sun, occasionally. Honest. I’m coming around to the whole warm weather situation. I like being able to wear sundresses and sandals, eat popsicles, and leave the house without a jacket. I really do. But, when I can’t turn on my oven because it’s simply too hot, I don’t like it. At all. Thankfully, the weather finalllllly cooled down. Hence, these beauties making their way into the oven to be baked into absolute deliciousness.

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Dipped Cookies
I know I’m raving on and on about these cookies, and I’m sure you’re thinking “Yeah, okay Meggan”, but in all seriousness, these cookies do deserve all the hoopla. The flavor combination of the caramel, toffee, and chocolate, on its own, is heavenly, but to pair it with literally the best cookie dough base recipe ever, pushes these cookies over the top. I’m in absolute love with this cookie dough recipe, and I plan on using it as the base for all future cookies I make. That’s how good it is. Which is why I need to take a moment to thank Sally from the blog Sally’s Baking Addiction. Thank you for creating this cookie dough recipe! You truly are a baking goddess.

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Dipped Cookies
Yields: 24 Cookies

Ingredients:
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup golden brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup unsalted butter, melted
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla
¾ cup caramel bits
½ cup milk chocolate toffee bits
1 1/3 cup milk chocolate candy melts

Directions:
In a large bowl combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
In a medium-sized bowl whisk together melted butter and sugars until no clumps of brown sugar remain.
Whisk in the egg, and then the egg yolk. Add vanilla. Whisk until combined.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mixture and mix together with a rubber spatula until combined. The dough will be soft, but very thick to work with.
Using a spatula fold in the caramel and milk chocolate toffee bits—because of the melted butter, they may not stick to the dough, but do your best to evenly spread them throughout.
Cover the dough and let chill for at least 2 hours, or up to 3 days—I let mine sit overnight. Chilling is mandatory for this recipe though—trust me, it’s worth it!
Take the dough out of the refrigerator and allow to slightly soften at room temperature for about 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees, and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
Roll the dough into about tablespoon sized balls. The dough will be crumbly and tough to work with, but the warmth from your hands will allow the balls to stay intact.
Bake for 11-12 minutes. The cookies will look underbaked and very soft. Let them sit on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes, to continue baking, before moving them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Once cookies have completely cooled, melt the milk chocolate candy melts in a microwave safe bowl, in 15 second intervals, until of drizzling consistency. Dip the bottoms of the cookies in the melted chocolate or spoon chocolate on the bottom of the cookies and spread evenly until covered (I preferred this method!). Place chocolate dipped cookies upside down on wax paper until chocolate has completely hardened.

*Cookie Dough recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction

 

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Dipped Cookies

Caramel Toffee ‘Pot of Gold’ Cupcakes

Caramel Toffee Pot of Gold CupcakesSee what I did there?

It’s your lucky day. Call it the luck of the Irish, if you will. I’m giving you, and myself, a pot of gold.

POTS. OF. GOLD.

We’re practically rich at this point. Think of all the things we can buy. Unlimited amounts of Ben & Jerry’s. An Endless supply of Oreos. And, peanut butter. Oh, and obviously milk. Hopefully you don’t mind double dipping. Ohhh. Even better. A bigger kitchen. That way I can invite you over to bake with me. You can be my official taste taster. You in?

FINE. I see you shaking your head. You never let me have any fun.

I made us edible pots of gold.

We can’t spend them. BUT. We can eat them. All of them. And, you know what, that doesn’t sound too bad to me.

Caramel Toffee Pot of Gold CupcakesI came up with the idea for these pot of gold cupcakes in a dream. And no, I’m not kidding. Normal people daydream about vacations or winning the lottery or having that magical storybook romance. Not me. I daydream mainly about food. Not eating it so much, but making it. When I stare off into space I’m building recipes, imagining  different flavor combinations, and debating if those combinations would taste better as a cake, cookie, pie, or so on. Foodie dreams. That’s what I have. Don’t judge. It does happen to some people. I can’t be the only one. Right?

I wanted to make a cupcake that was St. Patrick’s themed, but I didn’t want it to be green or involve four-leaf clovers…there are way too many adorably indulgent desserts already with those two things. So, I started thinking. What else screams March 17th?

Bailey’s Irish Cream. Tad bit predictable. Jameson Irish Whiskey. I don’t even like whiskey. Leprechauns. Would be hard to make into a dessert. Hmm. What’s related to a leprechauns? Gold. I could make gold cookies. Wait. Pots of gold. BINGO. I found a winner—keep in mind that’s basically a direct quote of my inner monologue. Your welcome for sharing my craziness.

Once I had the idea of making pots of gold, the recipe just sort of fell into place. Hellllllllo caramel toffee cupcakes topped with a fluffy caramel marshmallow frosting, coated with caramel, and sprinkled generously with toffee pieces.

Caramel Toffee Pot of Gold CupcakesLet’s break this down more slowly.

Caramel toffee cupcakes. They are ridiculously moist, soft, and caramely. Toffee pieces are scattered throughout the cupcake, making the caramel flavoring even richer. Each cupcake is then topped with Caramel Marshmallow Frosting. This frosting tastes like a combination of cool whip and marshmallows subtly infused with hints of caramel. Yes, that is a thing. And yes, it’s to die for. Once topped with the fluffy frosting, the cupcake is dipped in a caramel bath (can we make that a thing?) and then sprinkled generously with toffee pieces aka pieces of gold. Together, as whole, this cupcake is heavenly.

Caramel Toffee Pot of Gold CupcakesOne thing though…if you notice, I have some chocolate pieces on top of each cupcake too. That’s because I mistakenly grabbed a bag of milk chocolate toffee pieces and not just plain toffee pieces. I noticed this as I was melting my caramel, which meant I was going to be making pots of gold filled with sparkly, and dull, gold pieces. Don’t make my mistake if you want pure pots of gold. Or, do make my mistake. The hints of chocolate are a nice surprise for the taste buds amidst all that caramel and toffee.
Caramel Toffee Pot of Gold Cupcakes

Caramel Toffee Pot of Gold Cupcakes
Yields: about 13 cupcakes

Ingredients:
Caramel Toffee Cupcakes
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
¾ cup dark brown sugar
¼ cup golden brown sugar
½ cup sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup milk (don’t use skim or 1%)
½ cup toffee bits

Caramel Marshmallow Frosting
1 ½ cup sugar
3 egg whites
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
¼ cup water
½ teaspoon vanilla
1/8 to ¼ teaspoon caramel extract (add more depending on your taste)

Caramel Coating & Gold Pieces
11 oz bag of vanilla caramel squares for melting (I had about 6 leftover squares)
2/3 cup toffee bits

Directions:
Caramel Toffee Cupcakes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a muffin pan with cupcake liners. Set aside.
In a small bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt until combined. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat butter and both sugars together at medium-high speed until fluffy, about 2 ½ minutes.
Mix in eggs, one at a time, and vanilla, until incorporated.
Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, scraping down the sides as needed.
Slowly stir in the milk, until just combined.
Using a spatula, fold in the toffee bits.
Fill each cupcake liner about 2/3 full, dividing the batter evenly between the cupcakes. Bake for about 23-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack for cooling. Let cool completely before frosting, at least an hour.

Caramel Marshmallow Frosting
Before you start making the frosting, clear a space in your freezer to put the frosted cupcakes.
Set a pan of water over medium heat and bring to just barely a simmer.
In a heatproof bowl, beat together sugar, egg whites, water, and cream of tartar, using a handheld electric mixer on high until foamy.
Set bowl over pan of simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water, and beat mixture on high until frosting forms stiff peaks, about 15-20 minutes (yes, it’s an arm workout); candy thermometer should read 160 degrees.
Remove from heat and beat in vanilla and caramel, about two minutes or until frosting is of a thick enough consistency.
Using an ice cream scooper, scoop a ball of frosting on the top of each cupcake in the middle.
Let cupcakes sit in the freezer for about 30 minutes or until frosting has set enough that you can flip the cupcakes upside down without the frosting falling off.

Caramel Coating & Gold Pieces
While the frosting is setting melt caramel squares as directed on the package in a tall cup or deep bowl. Let melted caramel cool to room temperature—you want it to be cooled, but of drizzling consistency.
Holding a frosted cupcake upside down, dip the cupcake into the melted caramel—allow excess caramel to drip off.
Let caramel coated cupcake sit for a minute or so and then sprinkle with toffee bits—I found that if I sprinkled the cupcakes right away, some of the toffee pieces made the caramel drip off.
Place cupcakes in the freezer for about 15 minutes, or until the caramel coating has slightly hardened.

*cupcake recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction

This cupcake wanted to take a picture with these gold coins. In a mason jar. With a gold bow. Such a cupcake diva.

Caramel Toffee Pot of Gold Cupcakes

Toffee Hot Chocolate Snowman Shooters

Toffee Hot Chocolate Snowman Shooters I’ve chugged sipped about ten shooters. Give or take a few. Truthfully, I’ve lost count. And, I just reached for another.

What? Don’t look at me like that. Hot chocolate overdose can happen to anyone. Especially when it’s cold outside. And when the hot chocolate has hints of toffee. And is smothered in whipped cream. And sprinkled with toffee bits. And served in mini glasses that are ridiculously festive.

Can we just talk about the Snowman Shooters for a minute? Are these glasses not the cutest things you have ever seen?
Toffee Hot Chocolate Snowman Shooters Okay, maybe not the cutest thing ever, but they definitely rival for first, or at least come in second. Come on, you know I’m right. I, for one, just can’t get over how stinkin adorable they are. In fact, I stared at these little guys for a good ten minutes without taking a sip…I didn’t want to ruin their cuteness by drinking it. Hopefully you understand that feeling, and aren’t thinking that I’m a complete loon right about now. I’ve already started thinking of other things I can turn into glass form…spoiler alert…baby chick glasses for Easter filled with some sort of trifle. I’m already smiling in anticipation.

Did I mention how easy and inexpensive they were to make? All you need is a little fabric, a few beads, and some hot glue. Simple, right? If you want specific directions or some tips or just want to talk about how adorable they are, just leave a comment or message for me, I’d be more than happy to talk about any of the above :)
Toffee Hot Chocolate Snowman Shooters I did eventually get around to taking a sip. And then, another. And another. And then, I poured a few shooters for my family, who happily sipped its contents and then asked for seconds.

I haven’t even told you about the toffee hot chocolate.

TOFFEE HOT CHOCOLATE.

It. Is. Delicious.
Toffee Hot Chocolate Snowman Shooters This toffee hot chocolate has everything you could possible want from a cup of hot chocolate. It is velvety and not overly rich, chocolately and nutty, and has a creamy toffee aftertaste that leaves you wanting another sip immediately. The whipped cream and toffee bits on top, though optional, really do kick these shooters up a notch on the yummy meter—in other words, splurge a little on the toppings, you won’t regret it!

Mr. Snowman himself even liked it. He quickly sipped his shooter.
Toffee Hot Chocolate Snowman Shooters

Toffee Hot Chocolate Snowman Shooters
Yields: about 20 shooter servings

Utensils:
10 shooter glasses decorated as snowman*
10 green & white stripped straws

*If you want specifics on how to make the snowman shooters, just let me know!

Ingredients:
3 cups milk
1 1/2 cups half and half
1/3 cup + 4 tablespoons ground toffee bits
2 tablespoons sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla
whipped cream & toffee bits for topping (optional, but highly recommended)

*I used Bits’O Brickle Toffee Bits, and grounded them in a food processor until they were the consistency of tiny crumbs.

Directions:
In a medium-sized bowl, combine ground toffee bits, sugar, and salt. Set aside.
Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat, and add milk and half and half. Bring mixture to a simmer, stirring frequently.
Add three tablespoons of the milk mixture to the toffee-sugar-salt bowl, mixing thoroughly until combined.
Turn the heat down to low and using a spatula gradually add the toffee mixture to the saucepan, whisking until incorporated (don’t let the mixture boil).
Whisk in the vanilla and chocolate chips until melted and smooth.
Remove from heat and pour into glasses. Put straw in the cup and then top with whipped cream and toffee bits before serving.

 

Toffee Hot Chocolate Snowman Shooters