Soft and Chewy Almond Sugar Cookies


Wednesday, April 16, 2014


I can’t believe how fast this year is going. I’ll be back in LA in exactly one month! Who’s with me? There is still so much to do up here, including using up all my Groupons/LivingSocial deals that I bought. Oakland Zoo, anyone?

I’ve already transferred bases to work out of LAX instead of SFO and it is… different. I miss my SFO crews so dang much and I haven’t even left the city yet! I can honestly say that I work with the best people in the business and I’ve made so many great friends up in the bay. Not just friends, but forever friends. *tear*


Before I get all choked up without even moving anywhere, let’s change the subject. My DF and I have been quite busy celebrating his grandmas’ 90th birthdays (both of his abuelas turned ninety this year!), commuting into LAX for me and studying for finals for him, and crossing things off of our to do list before we move. Let me tell you, it’s a long list.

Cancel cable. Cancel PG&E. Write letter of intent to move out. Schedule moving date. Hire movers. Look for a place to live in LA. To buy or not to buy? Get rid of junk in the apartment. Wonder how the heck we’re going to pack everything into boxes. Clean, clean, clean. Buy wedding suit. Order wedding invitations. Update addresses on a million websites.


I’m getting tired just thinking about it. Let’s talk cookies. I admit that I don’t use almond extract as often as I’d like to. Vanilla extract seems to always be around the house, but let’s not leave our almond buddy out. The aroma that comes out of the bottle after unscrewing the top is unlike any other. It’s not as strong as vanilla and definitely smells less “alcoholic.” It reminds me of almond jello, the white jiggly stuff that Asians use to much in their desserts. I used to (and still do) devour plates of that after it sets.


I used Rodelle Organic Almond Extract for these cookies and they turned out uh-mazing. Great ingredients equal a great product!


The cookies are light, but thick. They’re sweet with just the right amount of almond flavoring. The extra sugar on the outside gives the soft texture a little toughness. This recipe comes from Sing for your Supper.

Soft and Chewy Almond Sugar Cookies


  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, at room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour**
  • 1 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • coarse decorating sugar, for rolling cookies


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cream together the sugar and butter. Stir in eggs, almond extract, and vanilla.
  3. Gradually add in the flours, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
  5. Form dough into walnut sized balls and roll in decorating sugar. Place on ungreased baking sheet and press down to flatten slightly.
  6. Bake for 8 minutes; cookies should not brown much at all- do not overbake.
  7. **If you don’t have cake flour, all purpose will work fine

Pillsbury Bold Giveaway


Tuesday, April 15, 2014



Lucky for you readers, Pillsbury® is doing a giveaway on my blog so you can GO BOLD at home!



Just imagine all of the swirled cupcakes that you can make!


One lucky winner will receive the Celebration Starter Kit (pictured above), which includes:

  • Funfetti® Aqua Blue Cupcake and Cake Mix
  • Funfetti Orange All StarTM Cupcake and Cake Mix
  • Funfetti Neon Yellow Cupcake and Cake Mix
  • Funfetti Vibrant Green Cupcake and Cake Mix
  • Funfetti Orange All StarTM Vanilla Flavored Frosting with ColorfulStar Shaped Candy Bits
  • Funfetti Neon Yellow Vanilla Flavored Frosting with Multi- Colored Candy Bits
  • $100 dollar Visa or American Express gift card

The total estimated giveaway value is $108! All you have to do is enter through the rafflecopter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is a sponsored post, but the opinions expressed are my own.

Pillsbury Bold Cupcakes and Frosting


Saturday, April 12, 2014


I’m always thrilled when I receive packages in the mail. However, when I get a Pillsbury® package, I’m extra giddy. Maybe it has something do that with that little Pillsbury Doughboy that I grew up with… or maybe it’s because they’re always coming out with new flavors and colors to celebrate with. Either way, this package did not disappoint.


Pillsbury has a new Funfetti® Bold Cupcakes and Frosting line and they want you to join in on the fun! All you have to do is show how you GO BOLD by uploading your baked goods/desserts via the Pillsbury Baking Facebook Page or Instagram using the hash tag #GoBold and tagging @PillsburyBaking between March 24-April 28th, 2014 for a chance to win some of the Pillsbury Funfetti and BOLD cake mixes and frostings prize packs. Eight winners are announced weekly, so get baking!


I chose to use the Funfetti Aqua Blue and Neon Yellow to make swirled cupcakes. Just look at how bright the batter is! I also chose not to use my mixer because it wasn’t necessary. A little manual labor works just fine.

I posted a sneak peak of them baking in the oven, and someone suggested that they were minion cupcakes. They could definitely be turned into minion cupcakes for a Despicable Me party!


I actually used these colors because I was brainstorming possible graduation goodies for my DF next month. We’ll definitely be celebrating his graduation then, but that doesn’t mean we have to wait that long to celebrate in general. These swirled cupcakes could be made for anything– celebrating a day at a UC school (go Bruins!), getting a good grade, or simply doing well on a presentation.


You could work celebrations into your every day life. There’s always something to celebrate, you just have to open your eyes and notice it.


These Pillsbury pouches are great for smaller amounts of guests since one bag makes 12 cupcakes instead of the usual 24, which is the standard for a boxed cake mix. It’ll also make one layer of cake rather than two. The pouches are made smaller so that you can get creative while baking. Make a rainbow cake or colorful cupcakes like I did here.


The directions say to fill each cupcake liner halfway with batter, but I like to live life on the dangerous side and fill them *almost* to the top. That way, I get a beautiful, tall, and rounded cupcake. The prettier the top is, the less frosting I have to use to cover it up. :) This tip works great on muffins!



I also frosted them differently. One, I did the traditional way with frosting swirled on the top. The other, I cut in half and slathered frosting across the middle, like a sandwich. There’s no mess involved with your hands when you’re trying to eat it. It works great with the kiddos!


Pillsbury Bold Cupcakes and Frosting


  • 1 pouch Pillsbury® Funfetti® Neon Yellow Cupcake & Cake Mix
  • 1 pouch Pillsbury® Funfetti® Aqua Blue Cupcake & Cake Mix
  • 1 1/3 cups water, divided
  • 1/4 cup Crisco® Pure Vegetable Oil, divided
  • 4 large egg whites, divided
  • 1 container Funfetti Neon Yellow Vanilla Flavored Frosting with Multi-Colored Candy Bits


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Line a muffin tin with 18 cupcake liners.
  3. Prepare each cake mix separately according to package directions using 2/3 cup water, 1/4 cup oil and 2 egg whites for each.
  4. Alternating between the two colors, drop 1 tablespoon of batter into each liner until they are 3/4 full.
  5. Bake 20-22 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove to wire rack to cool completely.
  6. Frost as desired.

This is a sponsored post, but the opinions expressed are my own.

©/® The J.M. Smucker Company. Pillsbury is a trademark of The Pillsbury Company, LLC, used under license. 

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