Sunny Side Up‘s Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread looks like a combination of monkey bread and a pumpkin spice latte that needs to get in our bellies!

 

What more do we need to say?  This one was going down the hatch one way or another!

 

Please click here to visit Sunny Side Up and see the instructions that we followed!

 

 

Reviewer #1 – Amanda

Mission:  I am a sucker for all that is fall and anything pumpkin. Trying this bread was a no brainer for me!

 

Details:

  • I ended up using some left over canned pumpkin puree that I had from making pumpkin pie a few days prior when we celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving. Yes…we are lucky enough to get not one but TWO Thanksgiving celebrations in one year. I LOVE it. Hands down my favorite holiday BTW. The only thing you are expected to do is eat, enjoy and nap. Who can argue with that? Okay back to the bread now.
  • I busted out my handy KitchenAid Mixer to do the muscle work in this recipe. Six minutes of kneading by hand is a little more than I am willing to do for a sweet treat.
  • I did decide to use the Spiced Rum for the glaze but since I was on the fence I did half rum and half vanilla extract.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

You really do have to stick with the 6 minute rule when kneading bread like this. I have learned to turn my mixer on and let it go while the timer keeps track for me. I typically set it to med speed if the recipe doesn’t specify.

I found that I didn’t need nearly as much of the sugar mixture inside nor the glaze as what was called for. I would say about half is all you need. I did end up putting a bit of the sugar mixture on top before baking it because I couldn’t stand to waste so much!

Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!

Pros:

Crazy good. Bakery good.

My kids ate every crumb and what they didn’t eat I snuck when they weren’t looking.

I will definitely be making this again.

Cons:

The recipe felt a little hard to follow but I know now that I have made it once before I wouldn’t feel like such a novice the next time around.

It is a little fussy too with the rolling out and layering.

I think you could easily do this in a Bundt Pan and simply cut the dough into chunks then layer it in the pan.

Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!

Conclusion:

This bread is definitely part of my personal cook book now and I intend to make it again and again…maybe for our second Thanksgiving!

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Maren

Mission: I see this recipe constantly on the Pinterest, so I was excited to give it a try.  I’m glad I made it when I did, because it was just the next day that my husband informed me that he can’t handle anymore pumpkin recipes.

Details:

Since I haven’t made anything like this before, I stuck to the recipe to a T.

  • I used my KitchenAid Mixer to do all the mixing.  Ain’t nobody got time for that.  Thank God I have one of those suckers.  When the recipe called for 6 minutes, I ran the mixer on low and set my timer.
  • I did add 1 extra Tbsp of flour to the dough as Jessica recommended, since it was a little on the sticky side.
  • I went with good ol’ Bacardi for my rum and was happy when I could taste a bit in the glaze.  I love boozy desserts.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

The dough hook – who knew?  That thing was great!  I have never used it before and it worked like a champ.  I especially love how it didn’t blow up a huge puff of flour when I first started the mixer up.  I’m using that thing for everything now!

Clearly I have no experience making bread dough.  I had no idea what I was doing.  What’s an oiled bowl?  I didn’t know and I had too much sh*t on my hands to Google, so I added 1 Tbsp of Vegetable Oil to a big bowl and rolled it around to cover the interior of the vessel.  Then, I dumped out the excess.

I also don’t think that my dough ever got as big as it was supposed to.  I think that “warm place” is more like what I think of as a “hot place”.  I had mine sitting under a very warm light and not much happened.

Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!To stack the strips of dough, I moved the sugar that fell off to the front of the bottom strip, then used that to help the spatula slide under the next strip.  Does that make sense?  In other words, I sort of used the sugar like you would use flour to lift cut out cookies off the counter.  This little trick worked really well.

After cutting the dough into strips and layering into the pan, I scooped up the excess cinnamon sugar mixture and sprinkled it on top of the dough.  I wouldn’t recommend doing this.  Said cinnamon sugar mixture wasn’t totally absorbed into the dough/melted and was a little sickeningly sweet to eat.

I suggest cooking for just a bit longer than you think you should.  Mine didn’t seem 100% done in the very center.

Even after looking at all the notes, I still didn’t really know what I was supposed to be doing for the glaze.  So, I just heated it all up as directed and poured it over the bread.  Side note:  apparently you are also supposed to dump the bread out onto a plate first.  That would be made it easier to pull-apart.  Duh, Maren.

Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!

Pros:

I was very impressed with the results!

Now that I [sort of] know what I’m doing and what to expect, I think that making similar recipes in the future will be less daunting.  This was a good first lesson.

Cons:

This recipe took a total of 4 hours from start to finish.

I am more of an instant gratification baker… let’s mix it up, bake for a few and eat it!

Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!

Conclusion:

I now have a whole new appreciation for pastries, especially caramel and cinnamon rolls.  Even though this recipe was very good, it was a little more labor intensive than I like.  I do have friends who happen to love recipes that take such care to make and this one is definitely for them!

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Sheri

Mission:  Well if you have ever read my reviewer profile, you know I pretty much steer clear of any recipes that involve yeast. It’s all so much like chemistry to me. In chemistry I just sat back and let my cute lab partner do all the work while I recorded the results. However, at the first sight of this incredible looking pumpkin bread I just had to throw my apron on and confront my fears.

Details:

I won’t lie to you, this was a process and it took up a good portion of my afternoon. I read the directions multiple times before starting. There’s a lot of melting butter.

  • Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!I followed the directions to a T… so I thought. I didn’t notice the asterisk notes at the end. I should have added the milk after it was room temperature rather than cold because it would clump. The look of it got a little nervous. It sort looked brain-like, but it worked.
  • After getting the dough together it needed to rise for 60-90 minutes. I waited and waited. I went and picked the kids up from school and came back. It wasn’t rising. “There you have it!” I thought, “Yeast and I don’t mix.” I felt like a failure. Then I realized the temperature in my house was rather chilly. I put on a fire and put the dough near it. There we go, it began to rise. I was slowly feeling a bit more confident.
  • After the dough was nearly ready I began making the super yummy cinnamon and sugar mixture. So easy!
  • I punched the dough down, which was super fun by the way, and then rolled it out. I took that yummy cinnamon/sugar mixture and pressed it into the dough. I then cut it into pieces and layered the pieces into the bread pan (the wrong direction). Oops.

When the bread was done I took it out and put it on a plate. While it cooled a bit I made the sugary glaze. I turned for a moment and then half the bread was gone and my children were eating it all.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Read the directions multiple times to get a good feel of the process.

Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!

Pros:

OMG so, so good.

Cons:

Cleaning up the cinnamon sugar goodness I got all over the counter. I was contemplating licking it. Horrible that it went to waste.

Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!

Conclusion:

This bread was amazing!! My oldest asked if it came from heaven. My other son said he wants to eat it “everyday!” My husband’s first word was “WOW.” The entire loaf was gone in a day and they’re already asking me to make it again. Pure deliciousness. Yeast, no problem.

 

 

Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread - We tried it!


The delish
Pull-Apart Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Bread and it’s photo by Sunny Side Up


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Urban Nester tells us that she has unlocked the secret of creating that amazing autumn beverage we all love at home with her Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Latte recipe!

 

There’s no way we could turn a treat like this down, especially when there is enough to share.

 

Join us for a test-run that could take the crockpot to a whole new level of awesome!

 

Please click here to visit Urban Nester and see the instructions that we followed!

 

 

Reviewer #1 – Sarah

Mission: To find an easy way to recreate the coveted Starbucks Pumpkin Spice latte – with a crockpot no less!

 

Details:

cooking - SarahI’m currently living a Paleo lifestyle, so I wanted to adjust this recipe to work for me.

  • I substituted dairy milk with almond milk.
  • I also decided to substitute homemade maple syrup for the confectioners sugar.

Once I got everything ready, I followed the directions closely. Since I was substituting the sugar with maple syrup…

  • I cut the amount to 6T since it was a liquid sweetener vs. sugar.

As soon as I poured in the vanilla extract, I decided that 8T was probably too much – I instantly smelled the alcohol and wasn’t too keen on it. I instantly wished I would have cut the amount down a bit.

  • In addition, based on comments on the recipe post, I decided to up the ante on the strength of my coffee and did about 1.5 teaspoons of the instant coffee I used per cup vs. just 1 teaspoon.

As it cooked in the crockpot, my kitchen began to smell of fall, which was awesome! I loved the scent it left around my home – so festive. This is my favorite time of year, so anything making it feel even more festive is so fun!

Once the latte had cooked for two hours, I gave it a whirl! It was much better than straight black coffee, but it just didn’t turn out as awesome as I had hoped. I have no doubt if I tried it as specified that I would have really liked the end result. I did forget to pick up some cinnamon sticks, so I lacked the extra sizzle those would have added.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Be open to trying all recipes – in my opinion you can adapt most of them to work for your own eating habits. Adapting this recipe to meet my Paleo lifestyle worked just fine!

Pros:

Super easy to prep and a fantastic idea for a group gathering.

Cons:

Didn’t love the end result as much as hoped.

It was a bit slimy from the pumpkin puree and it had a strong aftertaste, which wasn’t super pleasant. I’m not sure if the aftertaste was due to the vanilla extract, the additional coffee I added or the lack of sugar.

We Tried It - Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Lattes!

Conclusion:

Unfortunately, I probably won’t try this again as much as I’d like to say I would.

It is a fabulous idea and some may love it!

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Maren

Mission: A great way to combine some of my favorite things: pumpkin, coffee and time with friends!  The lovely Alicia joined me to whip up this fall delight.

 

Details:

We measured everything out and followed the recipe to a “T”, including the massive amount of vanilla called for.  Good thing I had homemade vanilla on hand by the boatload from last year’s Christmas gifts!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

My Crock-Pot cooks at warp-speed, so I knew that this drink would be done in half the time.  After an hour, we checked and it was indeed done!  I wouldn’t cook it any longer.

I would think about adding more (if not doubling) the amount of pumpkin and spices in the future, as well as adding more of the strong coffee and less milk to get that “Pumpkin Spice” flavor that we all know and love.

I’d skip the cinnamon sticks, too.  While they’re a super cute garnish, I felt like adding more cinnamon spice may have been better.

Tap a little Pumpkin Pie Spice over your whipped cream for a little coffee shop flare.

Pros:

Pretty darn tasty after an hour, and very easy to throw together!

Cons:

This needs to be enjoyed as soon as it’s done.  By the time we had gone back for seconds, the milk tasted like it was a little funky.

Then, after Alicia left, I tried adding a little more pumpkin puree and it got even funkier.  Bummer.

We Tried It - Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Lattes!

Conclusion:

Sweet and a little spicy.  A nice change from the regular weekend coffee routine, although I would cut the recipe in half to make sure that you can enjoy it all before it gets weird.

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Kristy

Mission: Nothing better than the smell of pumpkin spice to bring you into the fall season! This is by far my favorite drink this time of year!

 

Details:

Cooking - Kristy

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Refrigerate the left overs!  I read a lot of questions on the original post regarding this and I must say, it was just as good the next day!

I would use a tad bit less vanilla, as I think it took away from the spice.  I will try Pumpkin Pie Spice next time as I like a richer taste of the pumpkin spice!

Pros:

Cheaper than Starbucks and can made in large patches to share!

Cons:

Travelling with this is scary in that crock pot!  Get a large thermos!

We Tried It - Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Lattes!

Conclusion:

Mike and I both enjoyed it!  We aren’t coffee drinkers so it was a nice treat to have in the morning!  A couple of tweaks and I believe this will rank higher on my list than Starbucks!

 

 

Reviewer #4 – Amanda

Mission: Kick fall off with a crock of pumpkin goodness.

 

 

Details:

I mostly followed the original recipe minus the whipping cream.

  • I used skim milk and pure Vanilla Extract.
  • For the coffee I used 6 shots of espresso (we like it strong in our house). Since this meant less liquid I did substitute in an additional cup of milk.

I set the timer on my crockpot for an hour to be certain I stirred it often enough. I find that cooking with dairy products in the crockpot can be touchy. After an hour the milk had already started to get a little border line curdled so I decided to give it a good stir and taste it. The flavors had already combined so I turned the crock off and poured a glass.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Definitely cook on low and really watch your time since crocks can vary in temperature.

Pros:

Very easy to throw together and made the house smell like fall.

Cons:

Dairy in the crock is still risky in my mind and after an hour it was heading into bad places which proved my theory right.

We Tried It - Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Lattes!

Conclusion:

If I made this recipe again I would change a few of things. I would reduce the amount of vanilla. The flavor was far too intense. I would say half would be enough. I would also reduce the cook time and strain the liquid before serving. The pumpkin seemed to just settle at the bottom which was kind of gross.

 

 

Alicia - TCCReviewer #5 – Alicia

Mission: To create a yummy beverage for fall/cooler weather at Maren’s house. Who doesn’t love spice lattes and going to Maren’s?!

 

Details:

Cookin' MH + AWWe stuck to the ingredients just as they were recommend by Urban Nester, even the ½ cup of vanilla extract – really?!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

This recipe is as easy as it sounds. Add everything to the crockpot and heat on high for about 2 hours.

Maren and I thought 8Tbsp or ½ cup seemed like a lot of vanilla extract, but oh so good.

We also thought that the pumpkin flavor was not as noticeable and adding a bit more was definitely needed.

Pros:

This was deliriously delicious and it makes a huge batch.

Cons:

Large crockpot needed or cut the recipe in half.

We Tried It - Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Lattes!

Conclusion:

I am not a coffee drinker. If I do indulge in a cup, it is severely flavored with cream and sugar with a splash of coffee. Maren was so kind to invite me over and try this recipe. It was delicious and tastes even better when chatting with a friend. We laughed and giggled our way through this recipe and it was a success! I will definitely make this again.

 

 We Tried It - Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Lattes!


The lovely
Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Lattes and photo by Urban Nester


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A little birdie told us that Sarcastic Cooking was spilling the secret to the special blackening seasoning that turns ordinary tilapia into a spectacular dish with a Latin twist!

 

Served with a healthy helping of avocado, their Blackened Tilapia Tacos sounded truly delish.

 

Please click here to visit Sarcastic Cooking and see the instructions that we followed!

 

Reviewer #1 – Sheri

Mission: Honestly, I’m not a huge fan of tilapia; however, I’ve only tried it once. Fish tacos? I’ve only tried those once as well. I figured I should practice what I preach and give it another try. Avocado with anything usually makes me say “yum.”

 

Details:

The directions were easy to follow.

  • Sprinkle the tilapia fillets with the blackening seasoning and cook them in the skillet with some olive oil.
  • Cut up some creamy avocado with some red onion and load it all onto a warmed tortilla.

One of the great thing about tacos is you can add anything you like; black olives, tomatoes, salsa, corn.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Make sure to heat the oil in the skillet beforehand. You don’t want them sticking.

Sheri - Tilapia 1

Pros:

This is a really quick meal to prepare. Great for a healthy mid-week meal.

Cons:

I can’t get my husband to even try them.

Sheri - Tilapia 2

Conclusion:

I actually liked them and I didn’t think that I would. The fish tacos I had at On the Border, grossed me out. I must say that Stefanie from Sarcastic Cooking really does have a yummy blackening seasoning. I’ll be using it often. So I enjoyed my tilapia tacos all by my lonesome with a cold beer…they don’t know what they’re missing.

 

 

Reviewer #2 – Kristy

Mission: Mexican and a little Louisiana blackened fish…can’t beat it!  This was a no brainer!

 

Details:

  • I used my go to seasoning mix, Tony Chachere’s as it includes all of the ingredients that we wanted for our fish and provides a good spicy kick!
  • Instead of sliced avocados I purchased a southwest avocado dip which included green peppers, black beans, and corn.
  • Sprinkle of cheddar cheese!
  • All organic products used!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Keep it simple and healthy!

Pros:

Simple and delicious!!

Cons:

None, it’s perfect!

Kristy - Tilapia

Conclusion:

Mike and I enjoyed this meal!! Add some Mexican Rice (our favorite recipe is from The Pioneer Woman) and black beans to make it a complete meal!  I kept it simple, always in a rush in the evening!! Will definitely make it again, shrimp maybe my next ingredient to add!  Maybe a mango salsa…wow, you can get creative!

 

 

Reviewer #3 – Maren

Mission: This recipe sounded like the perfect way to get my husband to try some fish (which he usually hates).  I’m new to the fish taco thing myself.  Something about fish in a taco never sounded quite right; but I gave it a shot a few years back and found a new favorite!  I was looking forward to giving them a shot at home.

Details:

  • I used flour tortillas, simply because I haven’t found a store brand of wheat tortillas that I really like.
  • We had plenty of fresh pico de gallo with our tacos.
  • I also drank a lot of beer with this meal, which probably completely negated the fact that I was enjoying a nice, healthy, light dinner.  This was direct result of my pico de gallo taste-testing early in the cooking process, landing right on a jumbo jalapeno and having my mouth nearly burst into flames.  A beer… or two, was the obvious solution to this problem.

We enjoyed our first round just as Sarcastic Cooking suggested, with plenty of avocado and lime juice.  I don’t really believe in eating any Mexican dish without plenty of lime… and Corona!  We loaded in the pico de gallo for our “seconds”.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

My mom taught me to always thaw frozen fish in milk to get rid of any “fishy” taste.  I forgot about this until after the fact… they were just fine.  lol

Make sure to cook the fish through and through, because there is really nothing grosser than mushy fish.  *gag*  This also makes the blackened seasoning extra yummy!

I won’t cook anything in oil without my grease cover.  Can’t live without that thing.  I think that I got ours at IKEA for a couple bucks.

My trick to removing fish from the pan without having it fall apart – Big flipper on the bottom, Spatula on the top!

Maren - Tilapia 1

Pros:

Tasted great!  The honey even said that he’d eat them again… not all the time, but he’d eat them again.

Frankly, you could taste the seasoning and accoutrements much more than the fish itself, as [tilapia] is pretty bland as is.

Cons:

None, other than the fact that it can be tricky getting really great, fresh fish here in the Midwest that won’t cost an arm and a leg.

Maren - Tilapia 2

Conclusion:

I’m really glad that we tried this recipe together.  It’s always nice to know that you have some other options up your sleeve when your usual dinner menu starts repeating itself.  This is especially the case when you’re someone like me, who loves Mexican and eats it as much as humanly possible, only to make your significant other want to cry when he sees the tell-tale ingredients coming out of the fridge…  Mua haa ha!

On another note, I am so grateful to have this special seasoning recipe from Stephanie at Sarcastic Cooking.  I am already eager to add it to other recipes, like her yummy looking Blackened Chicken with Cilantro Lime Quinoa.

 

 

Alicia - TCCReviewer #4 – Alicia

Mission: Believe it or not, I have never had a fish taco.  Not sure why as I love tacos and fish.  I was super excited to try this recipe.

 

Details:

I followed this recipe closely and to a T…

  • Well, I guess we are not a wheat tortilla kind of family, so I used the regular tortillas instead.
  • I also added shredded cheese. Who doesn’t love cheese??!!

Tips & Tricks Learned:

This is the first time I have ever sliced an Avocado.  Fun times and not so hard!  I also added extra salt and pepper to jazz up the taste.

Alicia - Tilapia 1

Pros:

Adding cheese and lime definitely added to the flavor.

Cons:

Tilapia is a very mild fish. I might try halibut next time.

Alicia - Tilapia 2

Conclusion:

This was an easy and delicious recipe!  I prefer my tacos loaded with the good stuff – sour cream, cilantro, salsa and of course cheese, just to name a few; I was pleasantly surprised with the taste of this and loved the blackening seasoning.  Very good! Even better with a Corona or Margarita!!!

 

 

Reviewer #5 – Sarah

Mission: To find a quick, easy and healthy dinner that my family will enjoy, and one that will remind me of being on a Mexican vacation.

 

Details:

I gathered all of the fresh ingredients – the avocado, tomatoes, whole wheat tortillas and limes while on my weekly Super Target run.

  • I also picked up onions as I can’t have tacos without onions!

While I was prepping things for dinner, I found that we didn’t have tilapia in our freezer like I had thought. So, I sent my hubby to our local market to pick that up. They have the best seafood section!

The prep for this dinner was so quick – I think I had everything ready to start cooking within 10 minutes. Once the oil was hot, I began cooking the seasoned tilapia. The recipe called for about five minutes per side, but we ended up cooking ours about seven minutes per side as our filets were cut a bit thick.

Once the fish was done, we flaked it up a bit and layered it on our shells to each of our liking. I added avocado, onion, tomatoes and squeezed fresh lime over the top. My hubby added onion and black olives. Our kiddos ate just the fish! Everyone enjoyed it.

Tips & Tricks Learned:

Make sure to cook your fish all the way through – and it adds more flavor to the blackened aspect the longer you cook it!

Make sure to buy a ripe avocado if you plan to eat it soon. The one I grabbed wasn’t soft enough, so that made prepping it a bit more intensive.

Sarah - Tilapia 1

Pros:

Easy meal to prepare!

Cons:

Can be more costly than planned if you have to hit up the local grocery store for tilapia. Plan ahead!

Sarah - Tilapia 2

Conclusion:

Quick and delish! We will definitely be making this again. I really enjoyed learning the basics of cooking a blackened style fish. Next time, I’ll make sure I have margaritas handy as well!

 

 Tilapia Conclusion


The delish
Blackened Tilapia Tacos and photo by Sarcastic Cooking


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