Chocolate Caramel Heath Bar Cake

Photo via Taste of Home

Photo via Taste of Home

When Robbie and I were in North Carolina this past week visiting my parents for a few days, my mom had made this cake for us to munch on during our stay. She knows we are both big Heath Bar fans — I made Robbie a Heath Bar cheesecake for his last birthday cake and may have eaten more of it than he did.

I’m not sure where she originally found the recipe. There are several versions of it online, but I’m posting this one because she (of course) tweaked it to suit her better, and when I make it for us now that we’re back home, I am not going to change even one single thing! Robbie told her it was THE BEST CAKE HE HAS EVER HAD. We both raided the refrigerator every night around midnight, like teenagers with the munchies, tiptoeing around so we didn’t wake any adults, whispering, and giggling. Robbie’s tip for sneaking around: always walk on the balls of your feet!

Here is Vicko’s version (in her own words) of this amazing, gooey, chocolatey, candyriffic, moist, fluffy deliciousness.

Chocolate Caramel Heath Bar Cake

1 box Devil’s Food cake mix
1 1/4 c. diet Coke
1 egg (calls for 1 egg white, but I used whole egg)
Mix with mixer on low for 1 min. Pour into sprayed 13×9 pan. Bake at 350 25-30 min. until done.

6 oz. fat free caramel ice cream topping
1/2 can fat free sweetened condensed milk (OOPS! I used a whole can!!! No wonder it was SO gooey! Do what you want)
Bag of Heath Bar Bits
8 oz. Cool Whip Fat Free

Heat (don’t boil) over med. low heat, stirring until smooth. Do this about 10 min. before cake is done. You want it to be very warm as you spoon over cake. Poke holes in cake when you get it out of oven and pour/spoon this over as evenly as you can. I use Kebab skewers to poke. Sprinkle 1 c. Heath Bar bits over top. Let cool completely. Cover with 8 oz cool whip and sprinkle 1/4 to 1/2 c. heath bits over top. Keep in refrigerator. Such a good cake!

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Tasty Tuesday: Cupcakes in Jars

cupcake_in_a_jar

In full disclosure, I did not take this picture, nor did I come up with this idea by myself.

Recently BC moved in with Coocatchoo and became the newest resident in our building. And his birthday was on 9/11 — same as my cousin, Nick. I decided at the last minute that I had to do something nice for him. But he’s a picky eater, and I only had an hour or so to put together a boy-friendly birthday-and-welcome gift. The solution: cupcakes in jars. Perfect for them to take on their trip to the mountains for the weekend, where they rented a house that turned out to be haunted and couldn’t do any hiking because of BC’s unfortunate toe injury. Meanwhile, I was camping with the still-in-recovery Swamp and busy getting poison ivy all. over. myself. What is with everyone’s luck this summer? Man.

Anyways, about the cupcakes in jars…I think the magic of these cupcakes, which everyone says taste better than normal cupcakes, is the ratio of cake to icing. You get way more icing in there. I made cupcakes (funfetti) and icing (cream cheese) like normal. Then I got out my half-pint jars with lids. I put a spoonful of icing in the bottom of the jar. Then I cut a cupcake in half vertically and iced the outside. I placed it in the jar on one side. Then I took the other vertical half of the cupcake and iced all the way around it, with a good thick layer on the side that would be in the middle. I also added some sprinkles to that layer. Then I slid it into the jar to form a whole cupcake again. It required a little tapping on top to get them secured. Added another spoonful (or two) of icing on top, and more sprinkles. Capped it, screwed on the lid, and added a circle of pretty paper on top. Voila!

Some people bake the cupcakes in the jars — they’re glass, it works fine. But I thought it was easier to bake them separately for better control over icing placement. If you give these as gifts, I recommend including a note about removing the lid by sliding it across instead of pulling upwards, so as not to remove the top layer of icing. I gave BC four of these because I had four jars, and I think it was a nice amount for two people. It’s a great gift idea, but it would also be a good solution for taking cupcakes to work (or school) with your lunch. You wouldn’t have to worry about the icing sticking to whatever it is you carried it in.

Coocatchoo is an admitted cupcake-a-holic, so she loved them. But my real joy came from hearing about BC, who is not even much of a dessert person, exclaiming that they were like the best cupcakes he’d ever tasted. Right before the haunted house made him dream it was kicking them out. 🙂