For our neighborhood preschool Polar Express party we combined with the 3 year old class and it was so much fun! I planned the party with my friend, Kara, from Simplistically Sassy
Entertaining for the holidays is one of my favorite things (along with rain drops on roses and red woolen mittens)! Being sponsored by Collective Bias, Inc. and it’s advertiser to create this holiday pie buffet sweetens the whole thing considerably! This post contains affiliate links. I receive a small commission on purchases made through these.
My baby boy just turned one and to celebrate we had a Baseball Themed birthday party for him. I decided to make his birthday cake, which as you may remember, has backfired on me in the past. But I went with a simple design and took pictures along the way so I could show you how I did it. If I can do it, you can do it! Just follow this easy baseball cake tutorial!
I’ve had this idea for marshmallow beach balls in my head all summer and I’ve been meaning to post it, but I swear this week everyone is posting back to school updates on facebook and I feel like summer just ran away from me! But, I figure all of my fans in Australia (insert crickets chirping) who are just headed into the summer will love that I’m posting this now!
These would be so cute to do for a swimming pool party or slip n’ slide party. The absolute best thing about them is that the kool-aid flavors the chocolate! Sure, you could just purchase different color candy melts, but the flavor the kool-aid gives is awesome and makes them taste as good as they look!
My daughter was extra excited for the games I had planned for her Disney Princess Birthday Party. I got some of the ideas from other blogs through Pinterest (check out my entire Disney Princess Birthday Party board on my Pinterest account). There are so many Disney Princess birthday party ideas out there, it was actually hard to narrow it down for her party, but I think we hit the perfect balance.
Disney Princess Birthday Party Games
Snow White’s True Loves Kiss
I recently posted about the Brownie Dessert Pizza I made for my husbands birthday. If you’ve got a birthday headed your way and the person you’re celebrating doesn’t care for cake or can’t have it because of dietary restrictions, I’ve got some really great birthday cake alternatives they’ll be sure to love!
I think you’ll find that they won’t feel like an “alternative” at all, and you may just find yourself a new tradition!
10 Birthday Cake Alternatives
1- Dessert Pizza
I made this decadent brownie dessert pizza for my husbands birthday and it was amazing. It had a homemade chocolate buttercream, homemade quick caramel sauce and M&M’s® Crispy on top. It was awesome! You could do a sugar cookie base, cream cheese frosting and lots of fresh berries for a fruit pizza too – that’d be perfect for spring!
2 – Waffle Cake
If you’re hosting a slumber party for your birthday boy or girl, this would be the ultimate way to wake them up! I love that Rachel at Eazy Peazy Meals used a boxed cake mix in hers. Genius! There are so many fun waffle irons on the market in different shapes that you can really play with this idea!
3- Cookie Tower
Whether your favorite cookie is an Oreo, Chips Ahoy or something else, pile them up and call it good! Serve with ice cold milk and you’ve really got a party going. The Birthday Cake Oreo Cookies would be perfect for this! Oreo Cookie Tower from Fab You Bliss
4- Ice Cream Sandwiches
These homemade peanut butter cookies are only made better by one thing – the homemade strawberry ice cream sandwiched between them. Perfect for any size party because you can make the cookies large or small and pre-scoop the ice cream and keep them in muffin tins until you’re ready to use them! I made the ice cream in my Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker (I got the orange one!) and we use it way more often than I thought we would!
5- Dipped Fruit
This is the perfect solution for kids with allergies or even if your looking for a healthier alternative. Set up a chocolate fondu station with lots of fruit options to dip or make chocolate (or yogurt) dipped bananas with lots of topping choices.
6- Ice Cream Bar
I absolutely love this option. It let’s guests customize their own dessert. Simply offer a few ice cream flavors and lots of topping and sauce options and you’re all set!
7- Cookie Cake
I still remember when I saw Kelsey Nixon post this on Instagram when she made it for her son’s birthday. It’s brilliant, and she has step by step instructions on her website so yours can look (and taste) just as good! I love that you could totally customize this by using chopped candy bars instead of chocolate chips.
8- Build Your Own Pie
I’ve seen this idea done at showers, but using the snack packs really makes it kid friendly!
9 – Rice Krispie Cake
I happen to be one of those people that can eat an entire pan of rice krispie treats. So, for me, this “cake” would be heaven! Layers of treats are sandwiched with lots of frosting and sprinkles!
10 – Donut Tower
II agree with them, that it is more striking when you have one type of donut, but mixing it up will make the most guests happy. No time to bake? Just pick up some donuts at the grocery store bakery. This would be the perfect solution to the no-cake-conundrum.
And since these ideas look so much better, especially for a birthday party, served on a cake stand, I thought I would link you to my favorite. Its a simple white porcelain cake stand that is super versatile! You can buy it here: Porcelain Round Cake Stand
This recipe for homemade Almond Joy is super simple and they turn out amazing! Almond Joy happens to be one of my favorite candy bars and so to have a homemade version is a little bit dangerous because I want to eat the entire recipe! It’s got some versatility so you can add more of the things you love (like I did). I adapted the recipe from this one I used for my Big Hero 6 party and they are divine!
For some reason when it is spring I want anything with coconut in it. I have visions of dyed shredded coconut mimicking the grass in Easter desserts. These add three of my favorite things: almonds, chocolate and coconut. There’s not too far you can go wrong with that!
Follow the recipe below and scoop 1-2 tablespoons at a time onto a Parchment Paper lined baking sheet. You can form them into whatever shape you want, but I “tried” to get them into the shape of an oval. If you’re really particular about it, you could pack them into a small cookie cutter. Allow to chill in the freezer for 45 minutes. You want them really firm and cold when you dip them.
(side note: I add sliced almonds to the recipe because I like almond in every bite. If you want to be more authentic, you can omit them from the recipe and place a whole almond on top of each mound before you chill them)
Melt 1/2 cup of milk chocolate chips in the microwave, stirring every 20 seconds until fully melted. Dip the bottom of each coconut mound and return to the baking sheet. Chill in the freezer for an additional 30 minutes.
Melt an additional 1/2 cup of chocolate chips and dip the top half of the coconut mounds to cover the entire surface. Return to baking sheet and chill until you are ready to serve.
- 2 Tbsp Salted Butter
- 2 Tbsp Milk
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla
- Pinch of Salt
- 1 cup Confectioners Sugar
- 1 1/2 cup Shredded Coconut (sweetened)
- 1/4 cup sliced Almonds
- 1 cup Milk Chocolate Chips - divided
- In a dry pan on medium heat, toast the almonds until they just start to get a nice tan color. Remove from the pan and set aside to cool while you proceed.
- In a saucepan, melt the butter on low heat. Remove from the heat and stir in the milk and vanilla and a pinch of salt (to counter all the sweetness). Add the confectioners sugar in three batches stirring until smooth each time. Add in the coconut and almonds and mix well to combine.
- Scoop onto a parchment lined baking sheet and chill in the freezer for 45 minutes. Dip the bottom half of each mound in 1/2 cup of the melted chocolate chips. Chill an additional 20 - 30 minutes. Dip the top half of each mound in the other 1/2 cup of melted chocolate chips and chill until ready to serve.
With my husbands birthday coming up I was delighted to develop a recipe for Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser to celebrate him and the return of M&M’s® Crispy! This post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small commission if you purchase through these links.
My husband is a tough one when it comes to his birthday. If you’ve spent any time around this blog you know how much I love to throw a themed party, but that just isn’t his thing. Instead, all he wants is really good food. He’s not much of a cake person (don’t get me wrong, he’ll eat it, but he prefers other treats) so this year I was so excited to make him this decadent M&M’s® Crispy dessert pizza. It’s out of this world delicious. There may be a couple of steps, but they are WORTH IT! Trust me!
The M&M’s® Crispy add something to this dessert that you’ll really appreciate. You see, you’ve got the soft, chewy brownie, the silky frosting and smooth luxurious caramel. It needed a crunchy bite to add dimension – and load on even more chocolate. The crispy rice center really makes it a match made in heaven!
M&M’s® Crispy Dessert Pizza
1- Bake the brownies. I used a 10″ spring form pan but a pizza pan would work great too.
2- Whip up that chocolate buttercream – you want it light and fluffy! Don’t be stingy when putting it on the brownie. Make sure you get lots of peaks and valleys too, that’s where the caramel can pool and it turns into a little caramel Jacuzzi for the bits of candy.
3- Drizzle on the caramel. Remember all those valleys you created in the frosting? Fill ’em up! You may not use it all, and you may find yourself eating it with a spoon at midnight when you are up editing photos of the dessert pizza you put it on. 🙂 Thank me later.
4- Top it with the candy. You can leave them whole, I decided to cut them in half with a serrated knife just to make sure everyone knew the crispy goodness they were about to partake of.
- ½ c. butter (1 stick) melted
- ¼ c. Cocoa powder
- 1 c. Granulated Sugar
- 2 Eggs – beaten slightly
- ½ tsp. Vanilla
- ¼ tsp. Salt
- ¾ c. Flour – all purpose
- 1/2 c. Butter - room temperature
- 1/2 tsp. Vanilla
- 1 c. Powdered Sugar
- 2 - 4 Tbsp. Milk
- 2 Tbsp. Cocoa Powder
- 4 Tbsp. Butter (I use salted, if not just add a pinch of salt)
- 1/2 c. Brown Sugar
- 2 Tbsp. Light Corn Syrup
- 1/2 Tsp. Vanilla
- 1/4 c. Heavy Cream
- 3/4 - 1 cup M&M's® Crispy
- Melt butter in a microwave safe dish. Add sugar, vanilla, eggs and cocoa powder and mix well with a rubber spatula. Add flour and salt and mix to combine. Don't over mix. Pour into a greased spring form pan that has been lined with parchment paper. Bake for 18-20 minutes at 350. Allow to cool completely before adding frosting.
- In a mixer with the wisk attachment whip butter for a few seconds. Add vanilla, powdered sugar and 2 Tbsp. of milk and mix together well. Add cocoa powder and additional milk and whip for 1-2 minutes until fluffy and smooth.
- In a microwave safe bowl add the butter, brown sugar and corn syrup. Microwave 30 seconds and stir. Microwave an additional 90 seconds and stir. Microwave a final 90 seconds and remove. Add vanilla and cream and stir well to combine.