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Chocolate Chip Cake Pops

choc chip cake pops close upSo, I had this great recipe idea. Lillabee twinkies!! I mean, you can’t go wrong with twinkies, right? Well, I went wrong. Very wrong! It turns out that although my first attempt at a Lillabee twinkie was very tasty and super cute, the Lillabee twinkie just didn’t taste like a real twinkie. For one, twinkies are a moist and springy sponge cake. I used the lillabee classic yellow cake mix, which is a gf/df version of a classic buttermilk cake. While they did turn out pretty tasty, I am back to the drawing board for a true sponge cake recipe. 

cake pops w logo


But none-the-less, a lesson learned… when life gives you a flopped twinkie recipe, make cake pops! And I’m so glad I did, because these little gems are superlative!! And don’t worry, I’m working with our new Lillabee Everyday All Purpose Flour blend to come up with a better twinkie recipe…  I will nail that twinkie recipe yet! Stay tuned. In the meantime, give these little cuties a try. They rock!

Step One: Bake Cake

Step Two: Crumble Cake, Stir in 1 cup of Frosting & 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

mix cake frosting and chips

Step Three: Use an medium icecream scoop to measure out portions of 1 1/2 Tb each. Roll into balls.

roll into balls

Step Three: Melt chocolate in microwave or on a double boiler until smooth. Dip lollipop stick into the chocolate, then insert into center of cake pop dough balls. Let chill for 30 minutes in the freezer.cake pops how to


Step Four: Dip entire cake pop into melted chocolate. 

dip in choc horizontal

Step Five: Sprinkle a few mini chocolate chips or other garnish on immediately. Allow to cool on wax paper. You may need to transfer to refrigerator to get the chocolate shell to set up.

cake pop

Step Six: ENJOY!!


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As for the Lillabee Twinkies? Still on my “TO DO LIST”!



Cookies & Cream Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Frosting

Cookies & Cream Cupcakes w textValentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays. I adore cutting out paper valentines, hand making red and pink decorations for our home and I especially love baking up sweet treats for the ones I love. The inspiration for this year’s Lillabee Valentine’s Day treat was my 32 year old brother, Austin. Austin has Down’s Syndrome and LOVES Denver Broncos, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the color orange, his 3 year old niece and possibly above all chocolate sandwich cookies. He is also the most genuine and unconditionally loving person I have ever know. So this year for Valentine’s Day, I dedicate this recipe to my little brother with love. I hope you enjoy this classic combination of cookies and cream cupcakes with vanilla bean frosting as much as he does. Be sure to share them with someone you love. 

Happy Valentine’s Day and Happy Baking! 


Cookies & Cream Cupcakes 4 w text



  • One box of Lillabee Classic Yellow Cake Mix
  • (¾ cup of milk (cow, rice, almond, etc)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • ¼ cup butter or non-dairy butter substitute
  • 2 large eggs
  • 8-10 chocolate sandwich cookies (reserve and finely chop 2 chocolate wafers to use a garnish)


Preheat oven to 350◦. Line 12 muffin tins with paper cupcake liners. Disassemble one chocolate sandwich cookie and chop 2 chocolate wafers into fine crumbs. Set aside to garnish. Chop remaining chocolate sandwich cookies into small pieces. Prepare one box of Lillabee Classic Yellow Cake Mix as directed on the box. Stir in small pieces of sandwich cookies. Pour batter into lined muffin tins and bake 25-35 min, or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.



This simple and sensational frosting comes together quick as a flash and is a complete show stopper! The secret ingredient is vanilla bean paste. I always use the Nielson-Massey brand, as it is certified gluten free and allergy free. You can find it at most fine baking supply stores and here online. I’m completely addicted to this product! I use it in everything from french toast to baked goods to popcorn. It is divine!! 

 Cookies & Cream Cupcakes 2 w text


Vanilla Bean Frosting Recipe:

  • 1 c. non-hydrogenated shortening or butter (room temp)
  • 3-4 c. powdered sugar
  • 1 Tb vanilla bean paste (or 2 t. vanilla extract)
  • ¼- ½ cup milk (rice, coconut, cow, etc.)
  • ½ tsp sea salt


Using paddle attachment on standing mixer, beat shortening/butter with salt and vanilla bean paste until smooth. Add 1 c. powdered sugar and mix until incorporated. Alternate a splash of milk with ½ cup powdered sugar until desired sweetness and consistency is achieved. Whip on medium high speed for 2-3 min.


To assemble: Frost cupcakes with a spatula or pastry bag and tip. Sprinkle tops with ½ tsp finely chopped chocolate wafer. Here’s a little video tutorial I found on you tube that will show you how to decorate them like the pros! (I used a 1A tip like the one used in this video) Enjoy!


Apple Spice Skillet Cake


square skillet cake for madeI absolutely love the fall! The crisp sunny autumn days in Colorado showcase the breathtaking golden aspen leaves as they pop against an evergreen background. This time of year I live for apples! I love trips to apple orchards, and the farmers market for the season’s best apples in all of their glory. Honey Crisp, Granny Smith, McIntosh… I love them all!  This particular recipe was made with empire apples from my husband’s family’s farm in central New York. A special thanks to Paul & Roz for sending us such a wonderful fall care package. 


Empire apples w larger thank youAnother thing I love about this time of year is baking, of course! In my mind October marks the beginning, of what I like to call, “baking season”. Preheat your oven and dust off your mixer! I’ve got some great recipes coming your way this fall.


As a new featured maker on Made Collection, I was inspired by the fabulous Lodge cast iron skillets they offer as a part of their collection. Confession: My kitchen cupboards are filled with expensive stainless steel pots and pans, but the truth is I rarely use them. I do nearly all of my stove top cooking in cast iron. From pancakes in the morning, grilled sandwiches for lunch and seared salmon for dinner, my cast iron pan is my go to. I even cook with it on my grill! So, its no wonder I was inspired to create this delicious apple spice skillet cake for my friends at Made Collection. And speaking of Made Collection, visit their sight to shop for Lillabee online!!


 apple spice skillet cake for made collection 2

Although this apple spice skillet cake is a simple recipe, the warming flavors of cinnamon and spice and the pop of tart apples are really spectacular. And baking in a skillet gives it a ton of rustic charm! The best part of this recipe is that you can make it any time of the year. It’s delicious served warm on a cold day for breakfast and equally appropriate to bring to a summer picnic and serve with ice cream.

Enjoy the season and happy baking!

Lillabee Apple Spice Skillet Cake:

  • One box of Lillabee Classic Yellow Cake Mix
  • ¾ cup of milk (cow, rice, almond, etc)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 Tb ground pumpkin pie spice blend (cinnamon,clove, nutmeg, ginger)
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup + 1 Tb sugar
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • ¼ cup butter or non-dairy butter substitute
  • 2 large eggs (vegan substitutions here)
  • 2-3 tart apples (granny smith, Cortland, empire, etc.)
  • 10¼” Lodge cast iron skillet


Place rack in center of oven and preheat oven 350º F.

Lightly grease cast iron skillet and set aside. Mix ¼ cup sugar with 2 tsp cinnamon and set aside. Sift Lillabee flour pack with 1 Tb pumpkin pie spice blend.

Mix cake batter as directed on the back of the Lillabee Classic Yellow Cake Mix. Once batter is mixed, measure out ¼ cup and mix with 1 Tb pumpkin pie spice blend and 1 Tb sugar. Set aside. Pour half of the remaining batter into the greased skillet. Top with dollops of the spiced batter mixture, then pour remaining batter over top. Use a knife to draw zig-zag lines through then entire skillet contents to create the swirl. Do not overmix.

Next, core and slice apples thin. Arrange on top of cake batter and generously top with the cinnamon sugar mixture.

Place skillet in the oven and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Use caution, as the skillet handle will be hot. Let cool, slice and enjoy!

Happy Baking!

PS- Now you can buy Lillabee online! Visit Made Collection to shop Lillabee.

Pumpkin Cake Pops

pumpkin cake pops coverCake Pops are so fun!  Kids love them, adults crave them and they are totally cute!  I love bringing Cake Pops to parties because everyone is always so impressed with my baking abilities.  Don’t tell anyone, but Cake Pops are really quite simple to prepare.   Also, guests always seem to enjoy them because they are not too big, so it is a great dessert after a big dinner.   As most of you may know, I love Fall and I bake as much as I can during the season.  I love baking with Fall flavors… pumpkin, apple, cinnamon, nutmeg, sweet potato…. my list goes on and on.

I wanted to create a recipe today that is unique and fun for this Fall season.   After a quick thought, I came up with Pumpkin Cake Pops!  I hope you enjoy these tasty treats.  They are fun to make and you are guaranteed to impress your friends and family with these Pops. 

Pumpkin Cake

  • 1 box Lillabee Yellow Cake Mix
  • 1/4 Cup + 2 Tbls softened Margarine (butter)
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 3/4 Cup Milk (cow, rice, almond etc.)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 tsp Vinegar — any type will do
  • 3/4 Cup Pumpkin Puree


Prepare a cake pan or muffin tins by spraying with oil, or greasing with butter/margarine.  Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.


Mix the spices with the Lillabee flour mixture from the cake mix in a bowl and set aside.  Combine the milk, vanilla and vinegar in a separate bowl and set aside.  Cream margarine and the white sugar from the Lillabee cake mix on medium speed for about 2 minutes until smooth.  Scrape down the edges with a spatula and then add the eggs and mix until fully incorporated.  Add the pumpkin puree and continue mixing.  Slowly add the flour/spice mixture and mix on medium-low speed until smooth.  Scrape down the edges of the bowl with a spatula when necessary.  Add the milk mixture and continue to mix the batter on medium speed. 

Once the batter is smooth, scoop spoonfuls of batter into the prepared muffin tins or pour into a cake pan.  It will not make a difference what type of pan you use;  I always use muffin tins when making cake pops because muffins bake quicker than a full cake, but it is your choice.  


Bake the Pumpkin Cake at 325 degrees F for 18-22 minutes (45-50 minutes if using a cake pan), or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle. 

While the Pumpkin Cake is baking, prepare the Spiced Butter-Cream Frosting.  When the Pumpkin Cake is done baking, set it on cooling racks until room temperature.

Spiced Butter-Cream Frosting

  • 1/2 Cup Margarine/Butter at room temperature
  • 3 Cups Powdered Sugar
  • 1-3 Tbls Milk (cow, rice, almond etc.)
  • 1/4 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • dash of Vanilla Extract

Using a hand-held mixer or standing mixer with a whisk attachment, beat the butter or margarine on medium speed until smooth.  Add the Vanilla Extract and Spices and continue to mix.  Slowly add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time, and mix until smooth.  Add milk if necessary to make the frosting creamy and smooth.  If the frosting is too soft, add more powdered sugar, until the texture is just right. 

Assembling the Cake Pops:

Once the Pumpkin Cake has cooled completely, put it in a bowl and mash it up!  This is my favorite part of making Cake Pops because you can get your hands dirty.  Plus you have a reason to destroy a cake.  Once the cake or muffins have been broken apart, use a hand-held mixer and mix the already-baked cake even more.  Continue mixing until the entire cake is broken apart and resembles a thick, sand texture.  Add 1 cup of the Spiced Butter-Cream Frosting to the mixture and continue mixing.  Add more frosting if necessary to achieve a thick, sticky consistency. 

Use a small ice cream scoop or a spoon to create small 1 inch balls of cake.  Place the balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and put them in the freezer to chill for at least 30 minutes.  Once the cake balls have chilled, bring them out of the freezer and prepare the frosting.  Right before you dunk the cake pops into the frosting, add a dash of milk to the frosting and microwave it for about 10-15 seconds.  Mix the frosting for 30 seconds with a whisk until smooth right after it comes out of the microwave.  Place a cake ball on a fork and dunk into the frosting.  Scrape off any frosting stuck to the fork and place the iced Cake Pop on another baking pan lined with parchment paper.  Top the Cake Pop with chopped pecans or cinnamon and stick a lollipop stick in the middle.  Continue dunking pops and decorating until all have been made.  If you are planning on topping the Cake Pops with nuts or cinnamon, do so right after they are dunked into the frosting.  Put the pops back in the freezer for another 30 minutes to set-up.  Once they chill, you can go ahead and serve them! 

 Enjoy and Happy Baking!

Summer Almond Poppy Seed Cake

Summer is one of my favorite times of the year, and it has finally arrived here in Colorado. I’ve been counting down the days, since we usually don’t have much of a spring.  I’m used to long winters so once summer officially arrives, it is quite a treat!    I love waking up to the birds chirping and the sweet smell of fresh flowers.  One of my favorite things to do in the summer is bake a nice breakfast treat and eat it outside on the porch with my family.  I frequently see hummingbirds, foxes, deer and bunnies while I sit outside. 

This Almond Poppy Seed Cake is one of my all time favorite summer breakfast treats and it is even better when enjoyed outside, surrounded by nature and mountain views.  You can make this Almond Poppy Seed Cake anytime of the year, but I always tend to wait until summer has officially arrived to make it.  I like to serve the breakfast cake with fresh raspberries, but any fruit is just fine.   The Almond Poppy Seed Cake brings back wonderful memories and is somewhat of a summer tradition for my family now.  I hope you enjoy this breakfast cake as much as I do, and don’t worry… second servings are alright in my book when it comes to this recipe.  Happy Baking!

Almond Poppy Seed Cake:

  • 1 box Lillabee Yellow Cake Mix
  • 3/4 cup milk (rice, almond, cow etc.)
  • 2 tsp Almond Extract
  • 2 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tbls Butter or Margarine at room temp
  • 2 large Eggs
  • 3 Tbls Poppy Seeds
  • 2/3 cup slivered Almonds plus 1/3 cup to sprinkle on the top

Almond Glaze:

  • 1 tsp Almond Extract
  • 2 Tbls Milk (almond, rice, cow etc.)
  • 1/2-1 cup Powdered Sugar


Place rack in center of oven and preheat to 325 degrees F.  Lightly grease a cake, bundt or loaf bread pan, or line a muffin tin with paper liners.


Combine milk, almond extract and vinegar in a bowl and set aside.

Beat butter or margarine with hand-held or standing mixer until smooth.  Pour contents of bag marked sugar and increase mixer speed to medium.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating each for 20 seconds.

Reduce mixer speed to low and alternate adding in contents of second bag and milk mixture.  Mix until well combined, and scrape down sides of bowl whenever necessary.  Sprinkle in poppy seeds and almonds and stir with a spatula until equally dispersed.  Pour batter into prepared pan or pour 1/4 cup of batter into each paper liner.


Bake cake 35 minutes or muffins 25 minutes approximately, until top is golden brown and toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean.  Let cool for 5 minutes in pans or tins, transfer to cooling rack and let cool. 

While the cake is cooling, prepare the almond glaze by whisking together milk, almond extract and powdered sugar.  Continue to add powdered sugar until consistency is slightly thick. 

When the Almond Poppy Seed Cake has cooled, drizzle the glaze on top and sprinkle the remaining almond slivers on top.  Serve with fresh fruit and Enjoy!!