April 2013 Recipes


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April came and went in the blink of an eye for me. Here’s what I made, along with noteworthy events, and my reflections on the month.

Slice-and-Bake Oatmeal Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Slice-and-Bake Oatmeal Raisin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Salted Caramel Pretzel Blondies

Salted Caramel Pretzel Blondies

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

Cinnamon and Spice Sweet Potato Bread

Honey Roasted Butterscotch White Chocolate Peanut Butter (GF)

Honey Roasted Butterscotch White Chocolate Peanut Butter

Trail Mix Peanut Butter Cookies (GF)

Trail Mix Peanut Butter Cookies

Soft and Fluffy Sandwich Bread (vegan)

Soft and Fluffy Sandwich Bread

Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars

Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars

10-Minute Homemade Hot Fudge

10-Minute Homemade Hot Fudge

20 Fast and Easy Desserts in Under 30 Minutes

20 Fast and Easy Desserts in Under 30 Minutes collage

Nutella Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Nutella Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Blueberry and Jam Buttermilk Coffee Cake with Buttery Vanilla Glaze

Blueberry and Jam Buttermilk Coffee Cake with Buttery Vanilla Glaze

White Chocolate Buttery Waffles Snack Mix

White Chocolate Buttery Waffles Snack Mix

Chocolate-Covered 7-Minute Microwave Caramels (GF)

Chocolate-Covered 7-Minute Microwave Caramels

Soft and Chewy Oatmeal Scotchies Cookies

Soft and Chewy Oatmeal Scotchies Cookies

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

Cinnamon-Sugar Crust Cinnamon-Ribbon Bread

Cinnamon-Sugar Crust Cinnamon-Ribbon Bread

Mango Coconut Water Tropical Martini

Mango Coconut Water Tropical Martini

Soft and Chewy Spiced Carrot Cake Cookies

Soft and Chewy Spiced Carrot Cake Cookies

Fluffy Vegan Coconut Oil Banana Muffins

Fluffy Vegan Coconut Oil Banana Muffins

Notable Events:

24 Hours of Peanuts Cookbook – Nearly a year ago, the National Peanut Board approached me and wanted to know if I could submit some peanut butter recipes for an upcoming cookbook they were publishing and it just came out. My own cookbook, Peanut Butter Comfort, comes out on June 4!

24 Hours of Peanuts Cookbook

The Big Potluck – I met up with 75 of my closest blogging friends for a fun-filled event in Temecula (Southern California’s wine country). About an hour away from my in San Diego, but breathtaking, calming, centering and I love it there.

Ree Drummond and Matt Armendariz

It was great to connect with so many bloggers whom I’ve known for years but had never met. Here are some shots I posted to Instagram (or FollowGram)

The Big Potluck bloggers convention

The wine flowed, and so the the laughter, fun, and sisterhood.

Wine glasses on a table

Ree is exactly like I thought she’d be in person and it was awesome to see her. She was holding this little girl and just loving on her like she was her own daughter, and it was so sweet and tender.

Ree Dummond

It was such a special time and I hope to attend again next year!

The Big Potluck convention


I’ve always loved the chewy nature and texture oatmeal lends, but this month was especially smitten with it. I made 4 different cookie recipes with oatmeal. Slice-and-Bake Oatmeal Raisin, Peanut Butter Trail Mix, Oatmeal Scotchies, and Carrot Cake Cookies.

I’m especially proud of the Oatmeal Scotchies and Carrot Cake Cookies. The oatmeal cookie dough base is the one I foresee using forever because it’s soft, chewy, thick but not too thick, and everything I want. After going through 4 other dough bases in the past 4 years, the fifth one is the charm.

The Carrot Cake Cookies were a feat because they are soft, chewy, and dense without being cakey. I didn’t want a carrot cake cookie that was like a carrot muffintop or a carrot whoopie pie that was softer, flimsy, and cakey. I wanted cake, in a non-cakey cookie form, easier said than done. After years of tinkering with the recipe, I’m finally happy. I started tinkering with it 2+ years ago and included a Carrot and Cream Cheese Cookie recipe in my cookbook.

I made 3 recipes with butterscotch. The Honey Roasted Butterscotch White Chocolate Peanut Butter, Oatmeal Scotchies, and Carrot Cake Cookies. I love the sweet zing of butterscotch, and vowed to use it more, and I did.

The Honey Roasted Butterscotch White Chocolate Peanut Butter is my favorite peanut butter I’ve ever made or had, and I wrote a book about peanut butter, so that’s saying something. I love, love, love it. The 10-Minute Hot Fudge is also straight-off-the-spoon-worthy and my ice-cream loving husband was in fudgy heaven.

I made three breads; all different and all new favorites. Sweet potato, Fluffy Sandwich, and Cinnamon-Sugar Crust. I almost didn’t post the Sweet Potato because it’s reminiscent of pumpkin and uses ‘fall’ flavors, but am so glad I did because many people have written to say they’ve made it and loved it. Sweet potatoes are season-less for us. The sandwich bread has gotten some glowing comments from long-time breadmakers saying it’s the best sandwich bread recipe they’ve tried, which makes me happy.

It’s harder posting yeast recipes because they do take time to write about in detail and I like to be as clear as I can so no one has a bread failure, so when people write to tell me they’ve made a yeast bread of mine and they’re pleased, it’s extra nice and makes it all feel worthwhile.

I also post bread recipes because, in general, I love the relaxing aspect of working with dough, and then of taking pictures of the finished bread. It doesn’t always hold true, but when the light is bouncing off a golden piece of bread just so perfectly, there is very little more satisfying than capturing it.

I made two cookie bar recipes that I will dream about for the rest of the year, Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars and Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars. Both are amazing, but the Peanut Butter version is just music to my peanut butter loving ways.

I remade 7-Minute Microwave Caramels and dipped them in chocolate. The original post never really took off and I think it’s such a unique recipe and wanted to do everything I could to help boost it, so I remade them with chocolate and sprinkles. It’s seems to have done the trick because in the last two weeks, the post has been pinned about 10k times.

I made vegan banana muffins that are light, airy, fluffy, puffy, and nothing like the vegan banana muffins I’ve made 4 years ago or that I’ve ever tried. They’re so light and remind me of mini-donuts.

I hit a milestone on Foodgawker with over 300 recipes/photos accepted. It’s hard for me to believe that I have 300 different recipes, and that 300 of them were pretty enough to make it onto their site. My first year of blogging, and the first 100 recipes or so, don’t get any pretty-food awards and those never made it.

From Special K Bars, my first accept

Special K Bars

to French Almond Cookie Cake with Apricot Cream Cheese Glaze, accept #302 – It’s been quite a journey on so many levels; from the kind of recipes I post to the photography. I couldn’t imagine my life without blogging, food, and photography, nd I am grateful for anyone who reads my blog. Thank you!

 French Almond Cookie Cake with Apricot Cream Cheese Glaze

Previous Recaps:

January 2013 Recipes

February 2013 Recipes

March 2013 Recipes

What did you do or make in this month that was memorable?


About the Author

Welcome to AverieCooks! Here you’ll find fast and easy recipes that taste amazing and are geared for real life. Nothing fussy or complicated, just awesome tasting dishes everyone loves!

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Please note: I have only made the recipe as written, and cannot give advice or predict what will happen if you change something. If you have a question regarding changing, altering, or making substitutions to the recipe, please check out the FAQ page for more info.


  1. I remember the days when getting on FG was like the sole purpose of my life haha. 300 photos is a huge milestone! There’s something about all your photos that just makes me happy and hungry, and honestly I can always spot yours before I see your name in the corner! You baked up some delicious stuff this month, as always!

    1. Thanks for LMK that my pics are always recognizable! That’s a cool feeling to have! And yes, being ‘owned’ by trying to get your pics on the food sites…we’ve all been there!

  2. I love to go through your posts like this one, and I definitely envy The Big Putlock and meeting Matt Armendariz :)

    1. He is amazing and has always just been the nicest, sweetest, more positive person toward me. Love him!

  3. April was very productive for you, so many delicious recipes.

  4. Wow! Congrats on over 300 recipes on Foodgawker. I’m still working on #1! Your cookie recipes are so wonderful…I haven’t made one yet we don’t adore. I’m so happy to have found your blog. Wishing you many more acceptances!

    1. Thanks for your support Dana & so glad to hear you’ve enjoyed my cookie recipes — so nice to know. And just keeping plugging along on #1. It’s actually much more memorable than the next 299 :)

  5. What an amazing month for you Averie. I love reading your reflections at the end of the month. Seeing everything together, all at once – is truly inspiring. I wish I could do it all! And do it all so beautifully. Congrats on getting over the 300 photo hump on FG! I remember when I first started to get accepted and the joy and thrill it brought me. They are so picky about their photography and yours is always easy to spot on there. It stands out, truly it does. I loved seeing all of this butterscotch. Butterscotch is one of my favorite flavors and I wish I baked with it more often. Each month gets better and better. And with the cookbook coming out oh-so-soon, I have a feeling the best is still yet to come! Way to go, so excited for this success!

  6. What a busy-tasty month! I’m ready for May, but not for how fast things are going to go now that the weather is wonderful and kind. (Is it possible to lasso summer and tie it to a fence for an extra month, or two?)

  7. Averie, your output is incredible – congrats on your upcoming cookbook. I feel sick that I missed the potluck gathering – I won’t next year! Love your tropical mango martini, btw…

    1. The potluck sold out in a DAY. I bought my ticket the day they went on sale at like 2pm. I was #69 out of 75. Within an hour after I bought mine, they were gone. It was even random that I found out about it; a friend/reader told me and then a half hour later I saw some things on FB about it, but honestly had I not been at my desk that particular day (it was like 6 mos ago they went on sale) I would have missed it too. So don’t feel bad! There’s always next year :)

  8. gorgeous recipes as always! isn’t it crazy how fast april went?! crazy!!!

  9. Your pictures are amazing! Congrats on having over 300 accepted on Foodgawker! I am particularly found of the martini picture above…it looks so refreshing!

  10. Couldn’t have said it better my self April did go by in the blink of an eye! You had such amazing recipes, definitely caused some hunger pain for me! I was such a jelly belly of all of you going to the pot luck event last week- and I was so close! Oh well next year!

    I can’t wait to see what May brings- so far it’s been super hot 95 here in the oc I bet you guys in sd had it better ;) Congrats of FG! WOOOO HOOO!

  11. what an incredibly delicious month Averie! I can’t wait to see what lovely goodies you whip up this month! And congrats on food gawker! that’s amazing!

  12. Congratulations, girlfriend! So happy for you that you hit the 300+ range at Foodgawker! AMAZING. Averie, you have truly outdone yourself. I don’t know how you do it, but you keep doing it! I may never leave this page…gazing and drooling over all your baked goodie goodness. Cannot wait for PB Comfort to be released next month, too! Looks like so much fun at the potluck. Wish I could have been there. It needs to travel more often. :) Happy Cinco de Mayo (early)! xo

  13. I sometimes have the crazy notion that I’ll stop consuming crazy amounts of sweet potatoes come spring, but clearly that never happens. I’m eating just as much, if not more sweet potato now than I was in the fall and winter. Throw in some avocado and lime and you’ve got a nice springy meal. The sweet potato bread really caught my eye, and is definitely something I’d love to try. I’m positive that if I brought this into work it would be gone in an instant!

    1. A few people have made it and told me they ate their loaves in a day! LMK if you try it!

  14. Congrats on your 300th Foodgawker acceptance!! What an incredible milestone. I tried for ages to get my photos accepted, and when one finally was, I felt like throwing a party. Maybe that’s overkill, but after 300 (and counting) you definitely deserve a celebration!

    1. Thanks, Nora. I remember my first one, too, and it was such a milestone. Congrats on your pics!

  15. Such a collection of some of the yummiest, mouth watering desserts I’ve seen! Very excited to try the Carrot Cake Cookies.

  16. What a spectacular lineup of goodies, Averie! I cannot wait to try those alice-and-bake cookies!

  17. Wow, 300 for Foodgawker! That is awesome! I can’t get accepted into Foodgawker if I paid them! lol Love your recipes this month, as I do every month. I look forward to see what you have posted this month!

    1. …if I paid them… <-- Lol. Girl they are picky, what can I say. There are times I get declined and see things and I'm like huh? But whatever :)

  18. Everything is absolutely mouth watering …I can’t decide on just one! You are just amazing in every way, Averie!

  19. You could seriously make a cookbook for each month full of recipes. EXCELLENT recipe list! You continue to amaze me.

    1. Thanks, Liz! I have thought about trying to make my monthly recaps into ebooks, not even for sale, just to have ORGANIZED! Thanks for your support, as always! xoxo

  20. Congratulations on 300+, Averie! You are definitely one of my favorite blogs to read. Every recipe you post looks so incredibly delicious, the pictures are beautiful, and you just have a way with words that makes me want to try each and every one of them! Looking forward to seeing more yummy creations from you.

    1. Cassie what a sweet comment and compliments and I appreciate it very much! I put my heart and soul into this and I am glad that I’m one of your faves and that my pics, words, and everything just click for you :)

  21. congratulations! april was a bit month for you! i seriously find myself pinning your recipes every day and have made more of yours then any other blog i read. can’t wait for the cookbook..i preordered right away! congratulations on all your food gawker postings..i love browsing that site… seriously amazing. thanks for all your hard work! :)

    1. Marti thanks for the glowing compliments and didn’t know you made more of my stuff than any other blog you read – that’s wonderful to hear. Thanks for preordering your book! And thanks for being a loyal reader!

  22. Hey girl! Congrats on all those Foodgwaker acceptances. I remember my first acceptance there, my skillet baked chocolate chip cookie. I was so elated that I told everyone about it, even non-bloggers who were like, WHAT? They had no idea what foodgwaker was. I do laugh sometimes because Foodgwaker will accept something and then tastespotting won’t or vice versa. I think they’re in competition with one antoher :) Foodgwaker is much more responsive though. I had a lot of broken links due to the Daily meal tagging themselves on my links and Foodgwaker took care and fixed them all right away. Tastespotting’s are still broken and they have never even responded to my emails. LAME!
    Your special K bar looks similar to the chocolate peanut butter bars that I just posted :) Ok, girl, have a wonderful weekend. I’m so loving this hot spell that we’re in, feels like summer! xoxo, Jackie

    1. I have heard the FG is very responsive about that kind of stuff. I hope to god I never have to find out the hard way. And TS, hmmmm, interesting. And what FG accepts vs what TS does – very different. I submit differently to each site. TS will not take bite-mark images, FG loves them. FG will not take my topdown shots, TS prefers them…lots of quirks!

  23. Oh I hope you share more about that event. Gorgeous pictures (and not just all of those goodies). I guess something memorable from April will be my trip to Long Beach and running my first 10K

  24. Congrats on 300 foodgawkwer pictures! I think my favorite recipes of yours this month are the crumble bars simply because seeing those recipes finally pushed me to get over my fear of sweetened condensed milk!

  25. So many amazingly decadent recipes in one month – you go girl! Congrats on foodgawker, too :)

    Happy Friday!

  26. It was clearly another great month of even better food. It’s great you’ve had 300 pics accepted by Foodgawker. Something for me to strive for!

  27. Congrats on hitting 300+!! Thats is so awesome!

    I think my two favorite of the month are the caramel pretzel blondies and the Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars!! But all these recipes need to be made, every single one looks delicious!

    1. The Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars were definitely my fave bar-cookie this month. They are a total new fave :)

  28. I had not seen the cinnamon and spice sweet potato bread!!! Yes, yes, yes!!! And your crumble bars will forever be one of my favorites. I liked hearing about why you liked each if the recipes and to hear about the Potluck. I don’t know if you do that every month, but I enjoyed hearing the process and reason for certain recipes. April was the end of most classes for us , so that was probably the most exciting thing that happened:)
    Oh and CONGRATS on 300+ pics being accepted on Foodgawker! That is an accomplishment to be sure!

    1. I do do it every month, usually on the last day. I like to share my rationale and anything that struck me about the month, the recipes, etc. So stay tuned, every month, there’s a recap.

  29. I made the white chocolate butterscotch peanut butter last night! HOLY YUM! Wowzers. It’s so, so good. Thanks for a fabulous recipe! And awesome about the 300 Foodgawker recipes!

    1. I know, I LOVE that stuff. I can’t even make it b/c I just…inhale it! :) Glad you love it too!

  30. April was a tasty month!!! Love those peanut butter cup cookie dough crumble bars especially. Glad you had fun at BTP, looked like a great time!!

  31. 300 recipes accepted by Foodgawker?!?! Wow–and congrats! You have truly found your niche with this blog, recipe writing and photography. Loved making your April bread recipes! This may sound silly, but running outdoors was an April highlight for me. I have a treadmill and access to an indoor track, so I hate to complain because at least I can run somewhere all winter–but it’s just so nice to be out again!

    1. Thanks for the kind words and your support and for MAKING my recipes! You and one other lady make more, consistently (to my knowledge) than anyone else! And I am grateful! Glad you liked the breads!

      And running on a treadmill is just awful. I hate it. I would rather run in 0 degrees and in snow than on a TM. I either am bored to tears or injure myself (something about that belt, and my stride, they don’t get along) so I can totally appreciate loving running outside!

  32. The event in Temecula sounds like it was a blast! I can only imagine what that would be like, if that ever happens to me…years from now. I can only imagine how thrilling it must have been to actually meet the friends you have been connecting with for years but have never met. I’ve been blogging for two months now, connected wtih a number of fabulous people in the blogosphere…hope to connect with many more. And maybe some day, years from now, there will be a day I can attend an event like this to come face to face with all the awesome blogging friends I’ve made over the years.

  33. Congrats on hitting 300+ on Foodgawker! Not that I’m surprised :) Keep on with the good work, totally LOVE your recipes!

    1. Thanks, Siunna! And I saw that you blogged about the Quintuple Fudgy Cookies and the Oatmeal Raisin Rolls. Glad you liked them and hope the Korean readers do too! :)