Funfetti Cake Dip – Updated!

This dip is sweet, fun, and couldn’t be easier to whip up.

Funfetti Cake Dip | A Nerd Cooks

You know Funfetti, right?  In case you don’t… Basically, it’s white cake with a butt ton of sprinkles swirled into the batter.  When baked, the sprinkles look like confetti.  And we all know that confetti = a party.  Ideally the frosting is covered in sprinkles, too.

I’ve been bringing this dip to parties lately, and it’s consistently a hit.  It tastes just like Funfetti cake, but in the form of sweet, fluffy dip.  I actually took this batch to a friend’s house last weekend, which explains the disposable pie plate in the photos.

Funfetti Cake Dip | A Nerd Cooks

One really nice thing about this dip is that it’s not that terrible for you, if you ignore the entire box of cake mix that goes into it.  I like to think that the fat-free yogurt and whipped topping count for something.  This recipe is also easily made gluten free by using GF Funfetti cake mix (found in most grocery stores) and GF treats for dipping.

ALSO!  You can totally customize this dip for holiday celebrations.  Wanna make it for your Christmas celebrations?  Top with red and green sprinkles.  I’m going to be making this on Christmas Day, when family comes over to my parents’ house in the evening.

Need more Funfetti action?  Check out these Homemade Funfetti Cupcakes!Funfetti Cake Dip | A Nerd Cooks

I originally found this recipe on the blog Eat Yourself Skinny, and posted about it nearly 4 and a half years ago, here.

You’ll need:

  • 1 box Funfetti cake mix (easily made gluten free by using GF Funfetti mix)
  • 2 cups plain, fat-free yogurt (I use 0% Fage Greek yogurt)
  • 8 oz Lite Cool Whip
  • Extra sprinkles, for garnish (optional, but definitely recommended)
  • Graham crackers, Nilla Wafers, animal crackers, cookies, etc. (for dipping)

In a large bowl, mix the cake mix, yogurt, and Cool Whip together until everything is combined.  An electric hand mixer can help speed things along.  Top with additional sprinkles, if desired.

Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or so.

Serve with graham crackers, Nilla Wafers, animal crackers, or whatever you’d like to use as a vehicle for getting this dip into your mouth.

Funfetti Cake Dip | A Nerd Cooks

Funfetti Cake Dip | A Nerd Cooks

Bourbon Chocolate Sauce

Ahhh bourbon chocolate sauce.  How do I love thee?  Let me count the ways…

Bourbon Chocolate Sauce | A Nerd Cooks

This recipe was on the blog Kleinworth & Co.

You’ll need:

  • 1/2 cup half & half
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup bourbon (I used Bulleit)

In a small saucepan, combine the half & half and brown sugar.  Heat over medium heat until the sugar is totally dissolved and the half & half starts to bubble a bit.  Remove the pan from the heat.

Add the chocolate chips and vanilla extract to a glass bowl.  Pour the hot half & half mixture over the chocolate.  Stir vigorously until smooth.

Add the bourbon and stir to combine.

The sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge.

Though I’d highly recommend tucking into this sauce with just a spoon (kidding, sort of), I’ll show you what you can do with this soon.  Hint: it involves cheesecake.

Bourbon Chocolate Sauce | A Nerd Cooks

Stuffed Strawberries

My cousin, Sarah, made these adorable and delicious stuffed strawberries for my other cousin’s (her sister’s) bridal shower this past weekend.

You’ll need:

  • 8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • strawberries (amount depends on how big yours are… but ~2 of the clamshells you’d get at the grocery store)
  • vanilla wafer cookies, crushed

Combine the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract in a bowl.  Put in a piping bag with desired tip or put into plastic zip top bag and use as a makeshift piping bag.

Wash strawberries and remove the hulls.  Using a paring knife, at the end where the hull used to be, hollow out a bit of the berry.  Discard or snack on removed strawberry innards.

Pipe cream cheese mixture into the hollowed out berries.  Top them with the crushed vanilla wafer cookies.  Enjoy!

Meyer Lemon & Blood Orange Curd

Last night I decided to get my curd on.  I had a surplus of Meyer lemons, and Sean had brought a large bag of blood oranges home from work.  It only seemed natural.

I found the recipes on Cookie + Kate.  Please head over there for the recipes.  I made the Meyer Lemon curd exactly as the recipe states.  Next time around I would consider using more honey, or switching to sugar again.  I made the blood orange curd with ~1/3 cup of sugar instead of the honey.

Lemon and blood orange curdLemon on the left, blood orange on the right.

Strawberry Jello Pretzel Salad

This Strawberry Jello Pretzel Salad is a staple at picnics, cookouts, and the like.  There are a lot of different versions floating around, but I found this recipe for Strawberry Jello Pretzel Salad on

You’ll need:

2 cups pretzel twists or small sticks, crushed
3/4 cup butter, melted
3 tbs sugar

1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 (8 oz.) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

2 (3 oz.) packages strawberry-flavored Jello
2 cups boiling water
2 (10 oz. ) packages frozen strawberries (it’s nice if these are sliced, rather than whole)

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.  

Stir together the crushed pretzels, melted butter, and 3 tbs of sugar.  Press the mixture into the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish.  Bake for 8-10 minutes, until set.  Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together the cream cheese and 1 cup of sugar.  Feel free to use light cream cheese or that neufchatel business, if you’d like.  Fold in the whipped topping.  Smooth this mixture across the cooled crust.

Dissolve the Jello in boiling water.  Stir in the frozen strawberries, and set this bowl in the fridge for just a bit.  You want your Jello mixture to set a bit before adding it to everything else.  Otherwise things are a runny mess.

After the mixture has attained the consistency of egg whites, pour and spread it over the cream cheese layer.  Then refrigerate this dish until it has set.

Chocolate Covered Pretzels

Festive chocolate covered pretzels, at that.  =D I don’t really think any one person can lay claim to the chocolate covered pretzel, so I can’t attribute the inspiration for this post to any particular person/blog.  However, I did happen to see some super cute chocolate covered pretzels very recently, posted by Kim, on the blog Feed Me, Seymour.  Please swing by her blog if you haven’t done so already.  You’ll be happy that you did!

Every year during the month of December (and sometimes a little earlier than that) I become acutely aware of the fact that the holidays are approaching.  I mean, aside from seeing nonstop commercials and ads and whatnot, I start to feel Christmas-y.  That hasn’t happened yet this year.  I obviously know that Christmas is 1 week away, but I’m still not feeling it.  Maybe it’s because the weather has been pretty warm lately, or maybe it’s because I’ve just been busy with school and have only recently been able to pull my head out of my ass.  Who knows.  Regardless, I’m not feeling the holiday spirit quite as much as I’d like.  That’s where these chocolate covered pretzels come in.

Sean was out of town this weekend, so I took that as my chance to spend (probably) too much time in the kitchen.  Perhaps some baking would help put me in the holiday mood?  It did… a little.  Cranking up the holiday music and helping some friends decorate their tree helped too. =)  These chocolate covered pretzels are really easy to make, and look pretty impressive, or at least I think that they do.  You can use different colored sprinkles for different holidays, too.

You’ll need:

chocolate chips/chunks (whatever kind you’d like)
assorted sprinkles

Melt your chocolate chips in a double boiler, or, do like I did.  Place them in a glass bowl and microwave in 30 second increments, stirring frequently.  You can add a little butter or a smidge of vegetable oil to the chocolate too, if you like.  I added a little bit of vegetable oil.

Dip pretzels in chocolate, allow excess chocolate to drip off, and apply sprinkles!

It’s that easy. =)  Let them cool and the chocolate set.

I would, however, make a few recommendations: 

1) Put some parchment paper on a cookie sheet.  It will provide a relatively non-stick surface on which your pretzels can dry.  

2) For the love of all things holy, apply the sprinkles to the pretzels over a baking dish.  Otherwise you’re going to have a mess on your hands.  I used a 13×9 Pyrex dish.

3) If you use milk chocolate chips or chunks, put the cookie sheets in the fridge while the chocolate sets up.  Otherwise it will take a really long time to set up (or at least mine did).

I used milk chocolate and white chocolate chips.  Although I’m a bigger fan of eating milk chocolate, I thought that the white chocolate ones came out looking better.  It’s easier to see the sprinkles against the white chocolate background, and white is more festive than the milk chocolate.

Here’s the whole assortment =)

Pretty cute, huh?  Plus check out the adorable penguin bowl I have them sitting in!  I couldn’t resist.  Whip some up for a holiday party, for friends, or just for yourself.  Enjoy! 

Halloween Rice Krispie Treats

So Sean and I had a little Halloween party over the weekend, and since I’ve somehow managed to not post any Halloween-related recipes, I thought I’d share one with you that I served at the party.  It’s your basic Rice Krispie treat, but jazzed up for Halloween.  I hope you enjoy them!

This recipe was originally found at Pass the Plate.  

You’ll need:

3 tbs butter
4 cups mini marshmallows
1/2 cup peanut butter
6 cups puffed rice cereal 
12 oz. bag of candy corn

In a large saucepan, melt the butter over low heat.  Add the marshmallows and stir until completely melted.  Stir in the peanut butter until it has melted, too.  This is kind of a sticky mess… so be prepared!  Remove from the heat and stir in the cereal and candy corn until everything is well coated.  Use a buttered spatula or piece of wax paper to evenly press the mixture into a well-greased 13x9x2-inch pan.  Let them firm up, cut into desired shapes/sizes, and enjoy!

If your store happens to be out of regular candy corn (coughWalmartcough…) go right ahead and use some of the other varieties.  I used some (somewhat racially insensitive…) Indian Corn, because I was a little wary of the caramel-flavored candy corn.  By the way, when did they even come out with the flavored candy corns?  I completely missed out on that one.

Enjoy these!