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Thumbprint cookies three ways

24 Nov

Confession: I’d never made thumbprint cookies before, but I was craving salted caramels, and figured this was a good way to combine that craving and get a daily cookie recipe.

These can be easily adapted with any type of filling – I’ll include recipes for the fudge and the caramels, but you could put almost anything else you wanted.


Thumbprint cookies

10 tablespoons salted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1 tablespoon vanilla

1 1/4 cups flour

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2) In a stand mixer, combine the sugar and butter until completely mixed, 2-3 minutes. Stir in vanilla.

3) Slowly add flour, and mix on increasingly high speeds until it’s combined.

4) Roll cookies into balls, and place on cookie sheet. Cook for 10 minutes, then remove from oven.

5) Using a melon baller or a coffee scoop, indent each cookie (this is where the “thumbprint” comes from). Bake for another 7-8 minutes, and let cool slightly.

6) Before cookies cool completely, fill the center with the topping of your choice – two recipes are below, or you can use jam (my third choice). Let cool completely before eating.

Fudge topping

2 tablespoons butter

2 oz semisweet chocolate

1 tsp corn syrup

Mix in microwave safe bowl, and zap for 30 seconds at a time until fully combined.

Salted Whiskey Caramel topping

Take this recipe: salted whiskey caramels and make it, but only cook the caramel until it hits 234 degrees. Let cool slightly before adding to cookies – then sprinkle with sea salt.

Bourbon balls

22 Nov

Sometimes, the holidays are stressful – too many people traveling, in crappy conditions, to eat a highly emotionally packed meal together. Plus, there’s always the awkward family member, or the topic of conversation you’re all trying to avoid, or maybe just the fact that you’re all trying way too hard to make everything perfect.

All I’m saying is, sometimes the holidays make you want a drink. Or chocolate. Or both. This is your recipe.


Bourbon Truffles

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
3 cups mini chocolate chips
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 tablespoons bourbon (I used buffalo trace)
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1) In a medium saucepan, combine sweetened condensed milk and mini chocolate chips, and heat over medium heat until fully melted.
2) Remove from heat, and stir in vanilla and bourbon.
3) Chill in fridge for 2-4 hrs (I left them overnight, but that’s not necessary).
4) Roll mixture into 1 inch balls, and roll in cocoa powder. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours to set.

Dark chocolate cookies with drunken cherries

21 Nov

I have to give Kevin a lot of credit – I hadn’t ever really thought of soaking dried fruit in bourbon until I saw his Facebook posts, and well, it’s safe to say I’m completely addicted.

These are just a basic chocolate cookie, swapping out the cocoa powder for hershey’s special dark cocoa powder, and plus a little bourbon.

Only downside of these cookies is that they look a lot less delicious than they taste.


Dark chocolate cookies with drunken cherries

2 cups flour

3/4 cup cocoa powder

1 tsp baking soda

2 1/2 sticks salted butter, at room temperature

2 cups sugar

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/3 cup dried cherries

3 tablespoons bourbon

1) In a small cup, soak the cherries in bourbon for 30-60 minutes.

2) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

3) Mix sugar and butter in a stand mixer, then stir in eggs and vanilla

4) In a separate bowl, combine baking soda, cocoa powder, and flour, then stir into the butter mixture

5) Mix in the cherries and bourbon

6) Cook for 8-10 minutes, and let cool before eating

Pumpkin cookies with drunken cranberries and a bourbon glaze

19 Nov

To be honest, these cookies sort of came out of nowhere – I was sitting, hanging out with Kyle and Asher, and brainstorming ideas, and then all of a sudden….there they were.

They combine all my favorite things: pumpkin, cranberries, bourbon, and more bourbon.

Warning: These cookies are not for the faint of heart. Or expectant moms. But everyone else….enjoy!


Pumpkin cookies with drunken cranberries and a bourbon glaze

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 2/3 cup bourbon (give or take)
  • powdered sugar (2-3 cups)

1) Take 2/3 cup dried cranberries, and about 1/3 cup bourbon (you can improvise here). Let the cranberries soak for 30-60 minutes.

2) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

3) In a mixing bowl, combine butter, pumpkin, and sugar. Mix in the egg and vanilla.

4) In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients, then mix into the wet ingredients. Add cranberries, and a splash (2-3 tablespoons) of the bourbon the cranberries were soaking in.

5) Roll cookies into balls, and cook for 16-18 minutes.

6) Meanwhile, make the bourbon glaze – add the remaining bourbon to powdered sugar until desired glaze consistency – I’d start with two cups, and add from there. Mix until completely combined.

7) Let cookies cool completely before glazing.

Eggnog cookies (with rum!)

18 Nov
For the first time in a long time, someone brought liquor other than bourbon to my house for me to bake with.
This is what I made.
Eggnog cookies
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup eggnog
3 tablespoons dark spiced rum
2 eggs

1) Preheat the oven to 300 degrees

2) In a stand mixer, combine sugar and butter.

3) Mix in eggnog and rum.

4) In a separate bowl, combine spices and flour and baking powder, than add in to the butter mixture.

5) Roll into balls, and cook for 20-25 minutes. 

White chocolate chip and bourbon cranberry oatmeal cookies

13 Nov

I promised Dennis when I started this 30 days adventure that I’d find him boozy cookies that he could take to a cookie swap – and since bourbon is my drink of choice, it only made sense to start there.

These aren’t the booziest cookies you’ll ever make, but they’re easy and delicious, so I think that makes up for the limited alcohol content.


White chocolate chip and bourbon cranberry oatmeal cookies

1 cup butter, softened

1 cup brown sugar

½ cup white sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

11/2 cup all purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

3 cups oatmeal (uncooked)

1 cup cranberries

1/3 cup bourbon

1 cup white chocolate chips

1) Soak the cranberries in bourbon for half an hour.

2) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

3) In a stand mixer, combine the butter, sugar, vanilla, and eggs.

4) Mix in the flour and baking soda

5) Mix in the oats, the bourbon and cranberries, and the white chocolate chips.

6) Roll cookies out and cook, 10-12 minutes.

7) Try to let the cookies cool before inhaling them all.

Bourbon bread pudding with bourbon syrup

12 Nov

I’m pretty sure the title says it all.

Pro tip: Don’t eat this and then think you’ll do anything else productive that evening – it’s pretty boozy.

Bourbon bread pudding

Bourbon bread pudding

4-5 cups cubed, stale bread

3 tablespoons bourbon

1/3 cup dried cherries

3 eggs

1 ¼ cup whole milk

1 tablespoon vanilla

½ cup white sugar

2 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground nutmeg

½ tsp ground ginger

¼ tsp ground cloves


1)    In a small bowl, soak the cherries in bourbon for about 30 minutes. Grease an 8×8 inch pan and set aside.

2) Cube the bread into about 1/2 inch pieces – you can just tear it up by hand.

3) In a large bowl, whip the eggs. Add the milk, vanilla, and the spices.

4) Strain the cherries – the bourbon goes in the bowl, the cherries can be set aside for now.

5) Mix the bread into the egg/milk mixture. Pour the bread mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle cherries on top.

6) Cover with tin foil, and let sit in fridge for 30-60 minutes.

7) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

8) Take a larger pan (8.5×11 works well) and fill halfway with water. Place the 8×8 inch pan, still covered in tin foil, in the water bath, and place in the oven for 20 minutes.

9) After 20 minutes, remove the foil, and cook another 15-20 minutes. The bread pudding is done when a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

10) Let cool slightly before eating – if desired, drizzle some bourbon syrup (recipe below).

Bourbon syrup

1 tablespoon bourbon

½ cup white sugar

1 tablespoon butter

1) In a small saucepan, combine bourbon and sugar, and cook over medium-high until sugar dissolves completely, stirring constantly.

2) Once it’s completely cooked together, and comes to a simmer, turn the head down and add butter. Stir until completely mixed in.

3) Let cool, then drizzle on anything and everything.

Apple Butter Milkshakes with Bourbon

30 Oct

Apparently, I’m in a bourbon milkshake mood this week, because after making the apple cider caramels, I just couldn’t stop thinking about other apple bourbon milkshake possibilities.

Luckily, I’d been intending to makes some stovetop apple butter, which seemed to lend itself perfectly to the milkshake idea. And I had no shortage of friends willing to taste test until I got this just right.

Apple Butter Milkshakes with Bourbon

2 cups vanilla ice cream

1/2 cup milk (I used 2%)

1/3 cup apple butter 

1/3 cup maple syrup

1/3 cup bourbon

1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

Whipped cream for serving

1) Add all ingredients to a blender, and mix until milkshake consistency. You may need to add more icecream or milk to achieve desired consistency.

2) Serve with whipped cream. If you have any left over, drizzle with bourbon apple cider caramel sauce – you won’t regret it.

Bourbon Apple Cider Caramel Milkshake

29 Oct

After I made the bourbon apple cider caramel sauce, it seemed like the only logical conclusion was to add icecream.

So I did.

All I can say is, I regret nothing.


Bourbon Apple Cider Caramel Milkshake

2 cups vanilla ice cream

1/2 cup milk (I used 2%)

1/3 cup bourbon apple cider caramel sauce

1/3 cup maple syrup

1/3 cup bourbon (I used bulleit rye – you’ll taste the bourbon pretty strongly, so I’d go with a nicer one if possible)

1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

Whipped cream for serving

1) Add all ingredients to a blender, and mix until milkshake consistency. You may need to add more icecream or milk to achieve desired consistency.

2) Serve with whipped cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce.

Bourbon Apple Cider Caramel Sauce

27 Oct

Last fall, I made a lot of apple cider caramels.

A lot. I even blogged about it: Apple Cider Caramels.

This fall, I kicked it up a notch by adding bourbon and making it a sauce that you could use on icecream, with greek yogurt…or just with a spoon if the spirit moves you.

And stay tuned – I’ll be posting a recipe soon that involves this sauce, vanilla beans, more bourbon, and maple syrup to make a milkshake that is to die for.

Bourbon Apple Cider Caramel Sauce


4 cups  apple cider
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 stick salted butter

2 tablespoons bourbon
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark works)
1/3 cup heavy cream

1) Boil the apple cider in a medium saucepan over high heat until it is reduced to a thick syrup and is about 1/2 cup in volume. This took me about 45 minutes, but will depend on your stove/humidity/etc. You can stir occasionally, but don’t need to stir constantly.

2) While the cider is boiling down, butter a 8×8 inch glass pan and set aside.

3) Once the apple cider has boiled down, remove it from heat and add the butter, brown and white sugars, and heavy cream. Add bourbon. Return to medium-high heat, and boil until a candy thermometer reads 236 degrees. This shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes, if that.

4) Pour caramel into the prepared glass dish. Mix cinnamon and kosher salt together, and sprinkle over the prepared caramels. Stir in completely.

5) Let cool, then transfer to a mason jar. Stores in the fridge for up to a week.

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