Bored Cook In The Kitchen

Tried and true recipes, new twists on old favorites, and new dishes to expand my family's palate.

Tag Archives: cinnamon

Two-Layer Pumpkin Pie

Back in 1993, the year I was married, I received a little holiday recipe booklet put out by Jello-O, Baker’s Chocolate and Diamond Walnuts.  I have that booklet to this day and it’s falling apart.  It has so many wonderful and decadent desserts in it and I think I’ve made all but two of them over the years.  One recipe I’ve made over and over is their Two-Layer Pumpkin Pie.  It’s easy, no bake and a perfect pie to make when someone says they don’t like pumpkin pie.  I’ve had many people say that, try this pie, and change their mind.  It’s not your traditional pumpkin pie – which I love just as much as this one – but is instead a creamy version that I’ve never had a complaint over.

When I decided to post this recipe I looked at the Kraft Recipes site to see if they had it listed and sure enough they did.  The odd part is they’ve changed the recipe a bit and although I haven’t made the newer version of this, I have to wonder how it would work.  The original recipe calls for 4 oz. of cream cheese and 1 1/2 cups of cool whip added to the mix and layered in a 6 oz. graham cracker pie crust.  The new version uses 8 oz. cream cheese and 1 tub of Cool Whip.  I know from making the original version so many times that the two layers just fit into the 6 oz. pie crust, so I’m not sure how the additional amounts would work in that same size crust. 

So please take note that the recipe I share here with you today is the original version of this.  I’m thinking next time I’ll just make the newer version posted at Kraft and then not have an ounce of guilt for eating half the filling before filling the pie shell.  Works for me!


Recipe from Kraft

  • 4 oz. Philadelphia Brand Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 Tbsp. Milk or Half and Half
  • 1 Tbsp. Sugar
  • 1 1/2 Cups thawed Cool Whip Whipped Topping
  • 1 6 oz. Keebler Ready Crust Graham Cracker Pie Crust
  • 1 Cup Cold Milk or Half and Half (I use 1% milk)
  • 1 packages Jello-Vanilla Instant Pudding & Pie Filling
  • 1 15 oz. Can Pumpkin Puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. Ground Ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. Ground Cloves

Mix cream cheese, 1 tablespoon milk and sugar in a large bowl with electric mixer set to low until smooth.  Gently stir in the whipped topping until well combined.  Spread evenly on the bottom of pie crust.

Pour 1 cup milk into bowl.  Add pudding mix.  Using a wire whist beat pudding mix for 1 to 2 minutes or until well blended.  The mixture will be thick.

Stir in the pumpkin and spices with the wire whisk and mix well.  Spoon the pumpkin mixture over the top of the cream mixture in the pie shell and gently spread to evenly cover the cream bottom.  Chill well for a minimum of 3 hours or overnight.

Serve with some extra cool whip.  Enjoy!



Warm Apple Crisp

I can’t say I have ever met a dessert I haven’t liked, but I can say this is one dessert I absolutely love! 

One of my most favorite cookbooks is The Ultimate Southern Living Cookbook.  I have almost broken the binding on the book we have used it so much.  It’s filled with little yellow post it notes on some of our favorite recipes from the inside of their collection.  And I can tell you honestly that I have never made a recipe from this cookbook that wasn’t great.  I always swear I’m going to cook my way through that book.

This recipe I’m sharing today is not really out of their book.  They didn’t have a recipe for Apple Crisp, but they did have one for Rhubarb Crumble.  And I’ve made it and loved it.  I’ve used the same principles to adapt that recipe to this Apple Crisp, and it didn’t disappoint!

Warm Apple Crisp

  • 5 – 6 Large Baking Apples, peeled, cored and cut
  • 3/4 Cup White Sugar
  • 2 tsp. Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 tsp. Vanilla Extract *optional
  • 1 Cup Oats (I used Quick Cooking)
  • 2/3 Cup Packed Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/3 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1/3 Cup Butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and the oats.  Stir well until combined.  Add the butter and cut in until the mixture becomes crumbly.  Set to the side.

Wash and peel the apples.  Cut them into about 1″ size chunks.  Add to a separate mixing bowl.  Add the lemon juice and vanilla and stir until well combined.  Add the sugar and mix well.

Grease an 8″ x 8″ baking pan.  Add the apples to the pan and spread out evenly.  Top with the crumb mixture and spread evenly to cover the entire top of the apples.  Bake on the middle rack for 40 to 45 minutes. 

Once done, remove from the oven and allow the crisp to sit for about 10 to 15 minutes so it sets a little.  Serve warm with some ice cream on the side.  A little swizzle of Caramel on the top isn’t bad either.

**Note:  The pan I baked this in was a round Corning Ware dish that was about 1″ x 10 inches. 


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Crumb Topped Coffee Cake

My sister-in-law has made this cake for as long as I can remember and it’s a huge hit in our family.

You can call it Crumb Cake, or you can call it Coffee Cake.  It fits both bills.  Although, there is no actual coffee in this cake, it’s great with a cup of coffee and the crumbs on this cake really make it perfect.  My husband and I have always loved Coffee/Crumb Cake, but you can’t always find the perfect piece.  Often times the cake is thick and dry and the crumb topping is sparse.  To me, the secret to a perfect Crumb Cake is a perfect balance of moist cake underneath, and a thick and buttery crumb topping to adorn it. 

This to me is a nice balance.  Not to mention since you use a boxed cake mix, it’s perfectly easy as well.

There are a few changes I have made from the original recipe as given to me by my sister-in-law.  First, she uses a yellow cake mix.  Which is very good.  I had vanilla cake mix so I used that.  It was just as good.

The other thing she does different is she bakes this in shallow foil pans.  I don’t have the dimensions of the pans she uses, but I would estimate they are probably about 2 inches deep as well, but longer and wider than the one I used.  I know she uses two of these to make one recipe.  I didn’t have these  type of pans, of which I don’t know the measurements, but if I saw them in the store I would know.  The only pan I had was a 13″x9″x2″ pan.  It’s not terrible in this size pan, but I do prefer it in the more shallow one she uses.  It ends up coming out less cake-y and more crumbly, if that makes any sense at all.  Which after reading this last paragraph and all of my convoluted sentences, I wouldn’t blame you if you had no idea what I was talking about.  At this point I’m not even sure if I know.

The recipe I’ve giving below is based on a bake time for the size cake I made in the 13″x9″x2″ pan.  I plan on finding out the exact dimensions of the pans she uses and I will update the recipe once I do. 

Crumb Topped Coffee Cake

  • 1 Box Duncan Hines Moist Vanilla Cake Mix
  • Note:  Mix the cake mix according to the directions on the box, but replace the water with milk.  I used 1%. 

Crumb Topping Ingredients:

  • 3 Sticks of Unsalted Butter, melted
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 3/4 – 1 Cup White Sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 3 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon Nutmeg, optional
  • 1/2 cup Chopped Pecans, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix cake batter according to directions on the box remembering to replace the water with an equal amount of milk.

Grease and flour a 13″ x 9 x 2″ baking dish

Pour batter into prepared baking dish and bake in oven for 15 minutes. 

While cake is baking, melt the butter and add the vanilla extract.  In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and pecans.  Gradually add the melted butter and vanilla to the flour mixture, stirring well to get it all incorporated.

The flour mixture will be moist and begin to turn somewhat solid. 

After the cake has baked for 20 minutes, remove it from the oven.  When you remove the cake from the oven the center will not be completely baked.  If it’s somewhat soft, you can proceed with the directions from here.  If it’s very jiggly still, put it back in the oven and check it after each additional minute.  You don’t want the middle to be super soft and jiggly or else the weight of the crumb topping will sink to the bottom of the pan.

Break off pieces of the crumb topping and gently cover the top of the cake with it.

After you have the top of the cake covered, return it to the oven and bake until completely done.  My cake baked in my oven on the first round for 22 minutes, then I added the topping and cooked it for an additional 13 minutes.  Every oven will vary, as well as the pan you are using, so watch it and check for it to be done.  When you can insert a toothpick into the center of the cake and have it come out clean it’s done.

Allow to cool and serve with a good cup of coffee.

Cinnamon Vanilla Pancakes…for dinner


I had decided that one night this week I would make “Breakfast for Dinner”.  My kids love when I do this. 

As as is typical of my life, every night I planned on making this, I had to push it off for another night.  Last night was the night I finally got to do it. 

I had elaborate plans for my “Breakfast for Dinner” menu.  I was going to make a batch of my cheesy hash browns, some omelets, pancakes and french toast, bacon and sausage, and a fresh fruit bowl.

And then I was reminded of why I should never, ever, plan things because they never, ever pan out.

First was the notice that my husband would be working late and not to worry, he would grab something to eat.

Then came the call from my son that he and his friends were getting pizza so he wouldn’t be eating at home.

Great, I thought.  Why am I cooking a huge breakfast for me and two small kids?

But I was going to push ahead.  Do it anyway and say to heck with everyone.

Then both of my younger kids told me they just wanted pancakes and bacon. 

Fine!  But I was still planning on the cheesy hash browns, because I had my heart set on those. 

Then I got the phone call from 15-year-old son saying, “Can you pick me up?”

This was at 5:30 p.m. as I was getting ready to get started cooking.

“What?  You told me you were getting dropped off later.  Why am I coming out to pick you up now?”

Of course plans changed, and now my son needed to be picked up. Right now. Not later!

For the love of all goodness, is there ever a moment of peace?

Out I went to pick him up, and by the time we got home it was too late to start the hash browns.  At which time, my oldest also advised me that he was starving because he never ate.  Whatever.

So it was pancakes, bacon and fresh watermelon.  Not my original plan, but by that time I really could have cared less.

Did I mention hubby walked in the door an hour later.  AFTER there was no bacon left.  And only 2 pancakes left.

Hubby:  “What happened to all the bacon?”

Me: “Please, stop speaking.” 🙂

I can share with you my favorite pancakes though.  My kids plow through these when I make them.  They are thick yet light.  Perfect.

Cinnamon Vanilla Pancakes:

Adapted from Southern Living Magazine (Years ago, and can’t remember what issue)

Makes: 18 4″ pancakes

  • 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 3/4 tsp. Salt
  • 2 Tbsp. Sugar
  • 2 Large Eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 Cups Buttermilk
  • 1/4 Cup Canola Oil
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Cinnamon

Combine first 5 ingredients and stir well. 

Combine egg, buttermilk, oil, vanilla and cinnamon in a bowl and add the flour mixture stirring until well blended.

I use my electric skillet, preheated to 375.  Once hot, I add some butter and then pour the batter to the desired size of each pancake. 

Allow to cook on one side until bubbles form over the top and the bottom is a light brown.  Flip and cook until golden brown on the other side.

Serve hot with maple syrup.


French Toast



I almost didn’t post this recipe.  But than a funny American-living-in-Italy asked me to post something for breakfast.  I figured I would think up something good that was a little different, like my cheesy hash browns.  But then I remembered a few years back, a friend of mine ate my french toast and said it was delicious.  I thought it was a nice complement, but kind of odd since it was just regular french toast.  Nothing fantastic.  No fancy toppings.  No fancy stuffing.  Just. French. Toast.

When I asked her why she was so in love with it she told me that she had never added cinnamon to her french toast.  I was a little confused.  Isn’t french toast always made with cinnamon?  I thought so.  But, maybe not?

When I asked how she made hers she told me she just dipped it in egg, threw it on a hot buttered skillet and served it with syrup.   She was equally thrilled when I told her there was vanilla in the mix as well.

So in thinking of that I figured french toast might not be such a bad idea to include here.  Apparently, people do make it differently.  Who knew!

So here you have it.  A favorite recipe in our home, and a super easy one at that!

French Toast:

Serves: 4

  • 8 slices of thick white bread (I like to use Freihofer’s French Toast Bread)
  • 3 Large eggs
  • 2 Tbsp. milk
  • 1 tsp. (heaping) ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla extract
  • Butter for the skillet
  • Powdered Sugar for sprinkling on top (optional)
  • Slices of banana or berries for topping (optional)

*I use an electric skillet for my pancakes and french toast.  If you are using a stove top skillet, adjust cooking time as necessary.*

Heat your electric skillet to 350 degrees. 

In a pie plate, beat the eggs, milk, vanilla and cinnamon together. 

Put a pat of butter on the skillet.

Quickly dip each piece of bread, both sides, in the egg mixture and then place on the skillet.  Cook on one side until a nice golden brown, flip and cook on the other side.

Serve with warm maple syrup, some sprinkled powdered sugar and some sliced bananas or other fruit. 


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