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What’s for Dinner: Chocolate Chip Cookie Cheesecake

Cheesecake and chocolate chip cookies are pretty high on the list of “my favorite desserts”. Here are a few other variations I have done as well: my chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake and chocolate chip cheesecake.

What I did today, instead, was use cookie as the base of the cheesecake [crust], and put chocolate chips in the filling portion along with the little leftover cookie dough batter. Just mix it right in. 

It was pretty much a chocolate chip cookie cheesecake…yum!

What you need:

  • Your favorite cookie dough recipe or store-bought cookie dough.
  • 2 [8-ounce] packages of cream cheese, softened/room temperature
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • [about] 2/3 cup of milk chocolate chips

What I did was:

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Spray your springform pan with non-stick cooking spray as an extra precaution.
  2. Make your cookie dough using your favorite recipe or use a pre-made dough/log [let it come to room temperature]. Press the chocolate chip cookie dough down into the base of your springform pan.
  3. To make the filling, in a large mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract.
  4. Add a cup of milk chocolate chips [and any left over cookie dough batter you have] and mix. Tip: to keep your chocolate chips from sinking to the bottom, toss them with about a teaspoon of flour.
  5. Transfer your filling to the spring-form pan on top of the cookie dough base.
  6. Bake in your preheated oven for about an hour.
  7. Optional: for presentation purposes, if I was serving this to guests, I’d melted milk chocolate chips and drizzled that on top of the cheesecake before serving it.

Like my recipes? Click the below link to purchase my cookbook “What’s for Dinner”:


P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Chocolate [Football] Cake

I wasn’t planning on making anything for the Super Bowl party my brother’s were having last night… but the night before I just couldn’t help myself and started brainstorming ideas.

Since my brother’s were ordering food, I narrowed it downto desserts and finally decided to make a cake. It had to be a football-related cake [it was the Super Bowl afterall] but I didn’t have a football-shaped baking pan.

So what I ended up doing yesterday afternoon was: making the football shape on my own using my round spring-form baking pan.

I used my homemade vanilla cake recipe and added 1/4th cup of cocoa powder to the batter to make it a chocolate cake. I baked it in a preheated 350 degree oven for about thirty minutes. There was just enough batter left to make five cupcakes that I baked for about 15 minutes.

Tip: After letting the cake cool, what I did to make the football shape out a circle cake was: cut a two inch strip of the cake out down the center of the cake [cut less if you are using a smaller pan]. Move the two semi-circles to whatever you will use to serve the cake on. When you connect the two semi-circles, it is now in the shape of a football!

I used store-bought milk chocolate frosting to frost my homemade cake. I have vowed to never make homemade frosting until I can get a Kitchen-Aid stand-mixer.

Tip: whenever I frost cakes, I line the bottom of the cake with small pieces of parchment paper [easier to remove than one large sheet] so the bottom and edges look clean at the end and avoid a big mess.

After frosting it, all that is left is to decorate the top of the cake with the details of a football.

Another tip: I took coconut flakes and dyed them green to make “grass” to put around the football cake.

Like my recipes? Click the below link to purchase my cookbook “What’s for Dinner”:


P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Chocolate Cake [with Rolo]

This year, for Ayaz’s birthday I made a Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. I then decorated the top with rolo candies and drizzled caramel on top.
Last year? I made the M&M and Kit-Kats cake.
P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Chocolate Chip Squares


One of my favorite desserts [and one of my go-to desserts] are my Seven Layer Bars. Today, I did a very simple version of that by just using chocolate chips– not nuts, coconut flakes or peanut butter [for my picky brother!]

What I used:

  • 2 and 1/2 cups [approximately] of graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 [14 ounce] can of condensed milk
  • [about] 1/2 to 3/4 cup of mini [semi-sweet] chocolate chips
What I did was:
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. I took the graham crackers and put them in a large ziploc bag and crushed them (you can also just get the crushed graham crackers). Once it is all crushed, mix the graham crackers with the melted butter well (I did it with my hands because it was the easiest way to mix it and keep it from clumping).
  3. I used a 9 by 13 dish to make this in (spray with non-stick spray). So in it, I put in the graham cracker mixture and pressed it in well covering the whole bottom of the dish in a thin even layer.
  4. I sprinkled mini chocolate chips all over the graham cracker layer.
  5. On top of the chocolate chips, I evenly poured a can of condensed milk all over.
  6. Bake in your preheated oven for about 20 minutes. Once it comes out of the oven, let it cool before cutting them into bars/squares.

Like my recipes? Click the below link to purchase my cookbook “What’s for Dinner”:


P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Homemade Oreo Truffles


Back at the end of August, when we had the party at our house, Nadia made and brought her homemade Oreo truffles [that she had mentioned to me in the past several times]. It was my first time trying them, and let me tell you: absolutely delicious. I may or may not have consumed most of them…

I asked her how she  made them, and for some reason or another didn’t get around to making them until today.

Making Oreo truffles at home are incredibly easy [not good for someone like me who has a major sweet tooth], and take no time at all. Although there are a few steps involved.

Not only is it easy to make, but only requires three ingredients.

What you need is:

  • Oreos [or any cream filled chocolate cookies]
  • 1 [8 ounce] package of cream cheese, softened
  • 2 [7 ounce] containers of Bakers dipping chocolate [milk chocolate]

What I did was:

  1. Take about 4-5 Oreos and finely crush them [in a food processor]. Set aside for later: you will use these to sprinkle on top of the truffles.
  2. Finely crush the rest of the Oreos [in a food processor]. Add your cream cheese and mix the two ingredients until they are combined well.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  4. Take about a teaspoon of the mixture, roll into a “ball” and lay on the baking sheet. I made 36 truffles, but quantity will vary and depend on the size you roll the truffles into. When the baking sheet[s] are full, set it in the refrigerator for about 10-15 minutes so they are easier to work with. Once you take them out of the fridge, they will be easier to roll them into balls if you couldn’t before because of the gooey texture.
  5. Melt the dipping chocolate as per instructions. It took about 90  seconds to melt for me I’d say.
  6. Using two teaspoons [or a toothpick], dip each of the balls in the chocolate, and lay back on the lined baking sheet.
  7. Immediately sprinkle them with the Oreo crumbs you set aside before. Tip: sprinkle the truffles right away because the dipping chocolate hardens fairly quickly. Don’t wait to do this part at the end once all have been coated.
  8. The truffles can be eaten right away [which is  of course, what I did], but I’d set them back in the fridge to firm a little more.
I used a food processor for everything, but you could just as easily crush the cookies in a ziploc bag and then just mix the cream cheese and Oreos together.


P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Frozen Oreo and Chocolate Pudding Pie


Early November, I made a frozen Oreos and Chocolate Pudding Pie… yum!

I made this one frozen, because without a second thought I put it to set in the freezer instead of the fridge in the chaos… but it would be just as good [and I plan to try it next time] cold, but not frozen.

You need:

  • Oreo pie crust [store-bought or homemade]
  • 2 [small] packages of instant choco­late pudding
  • 2 + 1/2 cups of milk
  • Oreos
  • Cool whip container [large container]

What I did was:

  1. Combine the milk and pudding mixes and mix well. Add about half of the cool whip and fold until the mixture is a smooth and consistent color.
  2. Pour about half of the pudding on top of the pie crust.
  3. Add a layer of Oreo cookies on top before adding the rest of the pudding.
  4. Freeze until set [or overnight] before decorating the top with the rest of the cool whip. And more Oreos.

Like my recipes? Click the below link to purchase my cookbook “What’s for Dinner”:


P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Oreo Turtle Cheesecake

Cheesecakes. I love them. As it isn’t apparent by the number of different kind of cheesecakes I have made in the last several months. To think I always thought cheesecakes were so difficult to make makes me laugh now.


Anyhow, for Shazia’s bridal shower yesterday, I made a Turtle Cheesecake with an Oreo based crust. Turtle? What’s a turtle you ask? Not exactly sure why, but it’s the combination of chocolate, caramel and pecans. And that’s exactly what my cheesecake this day was. And the Oreos? Well, that was just for fun.

What you you need:

  • Cream-filled cookies [like Oreos]
  • 2 packages of [8-ounce] cream cheese, softened
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of granulated sugar
  • Mini chocolate chip morsels
  • Chopped pecans

To make the cheesecake:

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Crumble the [Oreo] cookies and press onto the bottom of your [springform] pan. This is your crust!
  3. Combine the other four ingredients [cream cheese, vanilla extract, eggs and sugar] until it is a smooth mixture. Then pour over your Oreo based crust.
  4. Sprinkle the top of your cheesecake batter with mini chocolate chips and pecans. Two out of three of the “turtle”. The third, the caramel, will be drizzled on top right before serving.
  5. Bake, in your preheated oven, for 50 minutes. Let it cool completely before removing it from the [springform] pan and cutting into it [to give the cheesecake time to settle].
  6. Right before serving, drizzle the top of the cheesecake with caramel.

Like my recipes? Click the below link to purchase my cookbook “What’s for Dinner”:


P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Chocolate Chip Cheesecake

A few days before leaving for hajj back in the beginning of October, it became a “use everything up in the kitchen that could potentially go bad” night.

Which meant it was a seafood night. My mom made fried fish and I made my Bang Bang Shrimp.

Oh and I made cheesecake. What better way to use up cream cheese?! A chocolate chip cheesecake with a pistachio based crust to be exact.

I’m finally getting around to typing up the recipe, so here’s how I made it:

For the crust, what I used:

  • 1 stick of [unsalted] butter, softened
  • 1 and 3/4 cups of sugar
  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of pistachios, roughly chopped

What I did:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees for the crust.
  2. Roughly chop your pistachios, and set aside.
  3. Cream together your stick of butter and 1/4 cup of sugar.
  4. Add flour in small batches until it is just combined, with your mixer on the low speed [to avoid getting flour all over you].
  5. Mix in your chopped pistachios and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
  6. Press the crust, gently, into the bottom and along the sides somewhat [I’d say about 1/4 of the way up] of a greased/non-stick springform pan.
  7. Bake in your preheated oven, for around 10 minutes until the crust turns barely golden brown.
Next, for the cheesecake filling portion:
What I used:

  • 2 [8 ounce] packages of cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 can of condensed milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of mini chocolate chip morsels

What I did:

  1. Lower heat to 300 and bake cheesecake for an hour.
  2. Cream together your cream cheese and the condensed milk until it is smooth.
  3. Next, add in the eggs and vanilla extract. Do not over beat the mixture, just until it is all incorporated.
  4. Pour half of of your cheesecake batter on top of the crust.
  5. Sprinkle half of your chocolate chips on top of the cake batter before pouring the remainder of the cheesecake batter on top. Sprinkle the remainder of your chocolate chips on top.
  6. Bake [in your preheated 300 degree oven] for about 60 minutes.
  7. Let it cool [and completely set] for at least several hours [if you have the will power] before cutting into it.

P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Nutella Cheesecake

This past Friday, I made a Nutella Cheesecake for a potluck on Saturday night.

With a very busy weekend, I needed something I could make in advance and a cheesecake was perfect for that. The whole making a day in advance and letting it cool [which I NEVER do] finally was done this time around… mainly because I had no choice.

I used the same recipe as my Chocolate Hazelnut Swirl Cheesecake , the only thing I did differently was: I didn’t do the swirl. I mixed in the nutella with the whole cheesecake batter.

To decorate, I topped the cheesecake with a thin layer of nutella, and then sprinkled hazelnuts on top!

Like my recipes? Click the below link to purchase my cookbook “What’s for Dinner”:


P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

What’s for Dinner: Chocolate Chip and Peanut Butter Cookies

Usually when I make homemade cookies from scratch, I simply make chocolate chip cookies because those are the only kinds my brothers will eat. This afternoon, I wanted something sweet but had no milk chocolate chips [my favorite kind], but had some leftover combination of peanut butter and milk chocolate morsels that would do.

I pretty much used my usual cookie recipe [makes about 16-18 good sized cookies]:

You need:

  • 1 stick of unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/4 a cup of granulated sugar
  • 1/2 a cup of [packed] light-brown sugar
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 cup of milk chocolate and peanut butter morsels [combined]

To make your Chocolate Chip Cookies:

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Line your baking sheet [with foil, etc.] for easy cleanup.
  2. In a bowl, add your butter along with the granulated sugar and the brown sugar. Beat on low to medium speed until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  3. Next: add in the salt, vanilla, and egg. Beat until everything is well mixed together. Add in your flour and baking soda and mix to combine everything. Lastly, add in the chocolate chips.
  4. Take even sized amounts of dough, and roll into a ball. Place on your baking sheet, leaving space in between each one.
  5. Bake in your preheated oven for 12-14 minutes, or until they are golden brown.

Like my recipes? Click the below link to purchase my cookbook “What’s for Dinner”:

P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.