Fudgy cupcakes are a gooey masterpiece

Baking homemade treats is a great way to spend time with family in the kitchen. It’s easy to craft creative and decadent desserts throughout the year, and controlling portion sizes and using the right ingredients can make these dishes a little less diet-unfriendly.

Mississippi Mud Cake is a luscious combination of sweet chocolate, crunchy pecans and gooey marshmallows atop a rich chocolate cake. It’s a variation on Mississippi Mud Pie, which uses many of the same ingredients but is served in pie form. This version of “Mississippi Mud Baby Cakes” from “Cooking Light: Fresh Food Superfast” (Oxmoor House) by The Cooking Light Editors doesn’t skimp on taste, but makes dessert more accessible to those sticking to healthier eating plans.

Mississippi Mud Baby Cakes

Yield: 24

Cooking spray

1 13.7-ounce package fat-free brownie mix

1 6-ounce carton French vanilla low-fat yogurt

3 tablespoons finely chopped pecans

3/4 cup miniature marshmallows

24 chocolate kiss candies

Preheat oven to 350 F. Place 24 paper miniature muffin cup liners in miniature muffin cups; coat with cooking spray.

Prepare brownie mix according to the package directions, using French vanilla yogurt. Spoon batter evenly into prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle evenly with pecans.

Bake at 350 F for 19 minutes. Remove cakes from oven. Place 3 marshmallows on top of each baby cake; place 1 chocolate kiss in center of marshmallows. Bake an additional 1 minute. Gently swirl melted chocolate kiss to “frost” each cake and hold marshmallows in place. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans. Cool completely on wire racks.

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