Warm Tasty Treats for the Coldest of Days

This photo is via Wikimedia, and is in the public domain.

by Lydia Wilbon

With the cold winter in full swing, there are many things to do to keep warm. One of my favorite activities is cooking with family, and the three recipes below all have to do festive holiday cheer and warmth that’ll last into the new year. Here are three tasty treats to keep the belly and heart warm while the cold temperature unpacks. 

To make the perfect brownie treat here’s what you’ll need: 


  • ½ cup of white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 2 tablespoons of water
  • 1 ½ cups of chocolate chips
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅔ cup of all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon of baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • powdered sugar (optional)

  • 8×8 in square pan
  • cooking spray
  • large mixing bowl



  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF (176°C). Spray or grease cooking pan. 
  2. Mix butter, sugar, vanilla, water, and eggs together in a large bowl. While stirring, add flour, baking soda, and chocolate chips until combined. Spread the batter evenly into the pan
  3. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the toothpick test comes out clean. 
  4. Once cooled, sprinkle powdered sugar on top (opt), then cut into squares.



For a hot cup of coco and sweet whipped cream, you’ll need:


  • 2 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons of sugar 
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup of milk, half-and-half, or cream
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1 cup of heavy whipping cream
  • ½ teaspoon of pure vanilla extract

  • small saucepan
  • metal mixing bowl
  • metal whisk

Hot Cocoa (the first four ingredients) 

  1. Mix cocoa, sugar, salt, and about 2 tablespoons of milk in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until the cocoa and sugar dissolve. 
  2. Mix the rest of the milk and change heat to medium, whisking occasionally, until it’s hot. Add in the vanilla extract and it’s ready to be shared.


Whipped Cream 

  1. Place a metal mixing bowl and metal whisk into the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes  
  2. Add sugar, vanilla extract, and whipping cream into a mixing bowl. Whisk until the cream reaches soft or medium peaks (about 3 to 4 minutes). Soft peaks form when the cream falls back on itself, while medium peaks hold their shape with a bit of a dip at the tip.
  3. Use immediately. If not, cover tightly and chill in refrigerator for up to 24 hours. When ready to use after freeze, rewhisk for 10 to 15 seconds.


For oatmeal, a healthy warm choice, you’ll need: 


  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 2 cups chopped strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1 banana
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups almond milk (unsweetened)
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup

Strawberries and Cream Oatmeal


  • bowl
  • spoon
  • knife
  • medium size saucepan
  1. Prep fruit by mashing the banana and dicing the strawberries. 
  2. Place fruit into a medium-size saucepan and add the rest of the ingredients. 
  3. Turn the stove to medium/high heat and bring to a boil. Then reduce heat to medium and let cook until thick and creamy, stirring often.
  4. Once oatmeal is at desired consistency, remove from heat and serve immediately.


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