‘Tis the Season.. for sweets!

‘Tis the Season.. for sweets!

‘Tis the Season.. for sweets!

Many of my favorite Christmas memories are centered around food- specifically sweets! In our family, we spend lots of time cooking together, enjoying meals with visitors from out of town, and of course, focusing on dessert! We don’t need much of an excuse to make dessert for any and every occasion. Here’s how I’m kicking off the holidays with sweets. These are DIY options, but if you prefer to eat sweets more than make them, you know we’re always happy to help!

1. Peppermint Brownie Ice Cream Sandwiches

The first dessert I made at home this season was these peppermint brownie ice cream sandwiches. Choose and prepare your favorite brownie recipe (you can even use a boxed mix if you’d like!), then freeze it in two large pieces. I baked the brownies on a large baking sheet and then cut it in half. Once its firm, spread peppermint stick ice cream over one half and sandwich them together. Return to the freezer until the ice cream has set and then trim the edges and cut into individual sandwiches.

The trick: Make sure to freeze in between each step to make sure they come out with nice, clean edges. Even if you don’t, they’ll taste delicious, but freezing helps them look pretty! Melt dark chocolate to drizzle and sprinkle with crushed peppermint for the finishing touches. These have so much versatility and van be made in ANY flavor- caramel, peanut butter, death by chocolate…. it’s a challenge to find a flavor that doesn’t pair well with brownies! 

 

2. Hot Cocoa Bar

Get friends or relatives together for a hot cocoa bar! Usually I will whip up a batch of hot cocoa from scratch and then provide a variety of toppings or flavorings for everyone to choose from. This is great because it’s fun for all ages. Just like with the brownies, so many great options pair with chocolate. I’m thinking caramel, peanut butter, crushed peppermint, and of course, marshmallows with whipped cream. To kick it up a notch, add Lucky Charms marshmallows for the kids and Bailey’s and/or Kailua liquor for the adults!

3. Cookie Party

Cookies are one of the most popular desserts of the holiday season. This year, I’ll be making dark chocolate gingerbread cookies, eggnog melt away cookies, peppermint Oreo fudge and buckeyes. Although buckeyes and fudge aren’t technically cookies, they’re so much fun to make and great recipes to make with the family because kids can jump in with you. 

4. North Pole Smoothies

One of the easiest and longest standing dessert traditions in our family is the “North Pole Smoothie”. Only two ingredients needed!  1. Your favorite vanilla ice cream and 2. sweetened frozen strawberries in syrup. You’ll thaw and puree the strawberries, then layer in a glass alternating with softened vanilla ice cream. If you want to get fancy, add crushed peppermint candies to the rim of the glass! The idea is to mimic the red and white stripes of the north pole. 

4 Reasons You Can’t Miss the Greater Cincinnati Holiday Market

4 Reasons You Can’t Miss the Greater Cincinnati Holiday Market

Reasons You Can’t Miss the Cincinnati Holiday Market

We are the official bakery sponsor of the Cincinnati Holiday Market! Why is this event so special to us?! It marks the beginning of the holiday season, landing just weeks before Thanksgiving! We’ll be checking out all of the vendors and shopping ourselves! Here are a few reasons you won’t want to miss out on this event!

1. It’s a One Stop Shop for the Holidays

We love the Holiday Market because it gathers a unique collection of vendors with products that you can’t find just anywhere! This makes it a breeze to find gifts for anyone in your life and see everything in one easy stop.

Since the market takes place right before Thanksgiving, it’ll introduce you to new businesses and give you ideas for creative gifts so that you can get your shopping list checked off in plenty of time for Christmas.

From gourmet foods to specialty boutiques to gifts for your pets, it’s the perfect place to buy, get ideas for presents, and treat yourself to a little something!

2. Unique Vendors

The market is a great opportunity to see vendors that may be new to you and offer specialty products that you won’t see elsewhere! Last year I found incredible gourmet marshmallows, Cincinnati and Ohio themed home decor, beautiful handmade jewelry and the cutest dog hoodies.

There are smaller gifts available that are perfect for Secret Santa or White Elephant gift exchanges, like mini spa kits, small batch candles, and custom t-shirts. No matter who you are shopping for, there are options for you

3. Wine Down

This isn’t just a chance to shop, the Holiday Market is a great opportunity to get friends together and “Wine Down.” The show has an awesome wine and appetizer lounge for you to hit up when you need a break. Grab a glass of wine and catch up before the busy holiday season is in fill swing. There are plenty of other food vendors available as well.

4. 3 Sweet Girls Cakery is the Bakery Sponsor

What do we bring to the table?! Sweet treats, of course! We’ll have a wide variety of decorated cookies, brownies, cake pops, chocolate dipped pretzels and Oreos, and cake push ups made just for the Holiday Market. We’ll have treats for the fall and winter seasons, Thanksgiving and Christmas!

Whether your plan to buy at the market or just want idea for holiday party desserts, we’ll have you covered! We always bring ideas and information about special ordering desserts for any gathering including corporate and personal holiday parties, birthday parties, showers and any other event you could imagine planning!

Check out our website to get a head start on ideas as you look through creations we have made in the past or fill out our order form to let us know what you’re looking for!

This year’s event is November 2nd to 4th at the Duke Energy Convention Center. We will be there Friday 11am to 7pm, Saturday 10am-7pm, and Sunday from 9am-5pm! We can’t wait to see you there!

4 Ideas for a Spooktacular Halloween

4 Ideas for a Spooktacular Halloween

4 Ideas for a Spooktacular Halloween

Whether you spend Halloween trick-or-treating, dressed up for a costume party or passing out candy from home, here are 4 ways to make Halloween a blast!

1. Have a “Pumpkin Party”

Get friends together for dinner. The catch: Make it pot-luck style and have everyone embrace pumpkin season by bringing a dish to share made with pumpkin! From pumpkin chili and pumpkin pasta to pumpkin cheesecake and pumpkin hot chocolate, everyone will be challenged to find a new recipe. It’s a blast to see what they come up with! Maybe even make it a contest and have guests vote for best recipe?! If you really want to keep the pumpkin theme going, have everyone bring a pumpkin to carve!

2. Make it a Neighborhood Celebration 

Halloween is the perfect opportunity to get together for a block party! Have neighbors meet on a driveway or area where everyone is welcome. Make Halloween themed foods, hand out candy together and make a fun themed cocktail for the adults! What a great way to meet neighbors you haven’t had a chance to meet yet and catch up with friends. Kids (and adults?!) can dress up and play games. The options are endless!

3. Have a Halloween Cake Pop Party

Friends of all ages will love getting together to make festive Halloween cake pops. What’s the beauty in making cake pops for Halloween specifically?! There’s no pressure to be perfect, because they’re supposed to be a little spooky looking. Pumpkins, Frankensteins, eye balls, oh my! There are endless designs you can create and no two pops need to look alike! Bake a tray of cake, provide buttercream and candy toppings to mix in and let everyone go crazy!

4. Order Some 3 Sweet Girls Treats 

If you don’t want to make the treats yourself, we’re always here to help! We love creating new designs for Halloween cakes, cake pops, cookies and cupcakes. We can make custom orders for your Halloween party, treats for your trick-or-treaters, or you can stop in for last minute cupcake to treat yourself! Check out our Halloween galleries for more ideas!

5 Reasons the Queen Bee Half Marathon is my Favorite Cincinnati Race

5 Reasons the Queen Bee Half Marathon is my Favorite Cincinnati Race

5 Reasons the Queen Bee Half Marathon is my Favorite Cincinnati Race

This race is a blast! Whether you are running, walking or doing a combination of the two (Yes, I’ve tried all three options and can vouch for them all) the Queen Bee Half Marathon is my favorite race in the Queen City. Here’s why.

1. Female Focused

The Queen Bee Half Marathon is a race that celebrates women right here in Cincinnati! There is also a 4 miler option if you’re in search of a shorter distance. These are more than just fun races! The Queen Bee Half Marathon promotes fitness, is geared toward women (although men can participate too!) and supports incredible local women’s charities, donating over $200,000 to them in the past!

2. Bee-U-Tique Expo

The Bee-U-Tique Expo at Duke Energy Convention Center is on Friday October 12 from 11am to 8pm.

While you stop by to pickup your race packet, check out the awesome vendors and leave feeling pampered with all your race swag. There’s even a Queen Bee fashion display at the Expo that you won’t want to miss!

3. Cheering Sections

The incredible cheering sections along the race course make the race memorable (and views of Cincinnati are great too)! There are entertainment zones and viewing areas throughout the race that make it feel like a party!

I’ve been handed everything from Swedish Fish and Hershey’s Kisses to orange slices and donut holes by excited cheering sections there to keep spirits and energy up along the course.

4. When you Cross the Finish Line….

Last year, I was handed a bottle of wine for completing the race and finishers under the age of 21 received a freshly baked 3 Sweet Girls cupcake! How much better can it get?! Finishers gifts may vary year to year but they never disappoint!

The Queen Bee Half Marathon definitely does it right!

5. After Party

The Michelob Ultra Victory Party is a perfect way to celebrate the morning post race with food, drinks and lots of good company! This year First Watch is providing breakfast complete with orange juice for mimosas, Kroger provides sunflowers, and there are tons of other awesome sponsors, vendors, and surprises! 

3 Sweet Girls

How does 3 Sweet Girls Cakery fit into the Queen Bee Half Marathon? We are the official Bakery sponsor of course!

We will also be at the Bee-U-Tique Expo at the Duke Energy Convention Center on Friday October 12th from 11am to 8pm where you can find vendors, samples, and of course our booth with a full selection of Queen Bee treats!  We’re making Queen Bee cookies, cake pops, brownies, chocolate-dipped pretzels and Oreos!

Whether you’re running, walking or just tagging along for the expo, stop by for a sweet treat. You deserve it!

Make Your Baby Shower Unique

Make Your Baby Shower Unique

Make Your Baby Shower Unique

1. Choose the Type of Party

Baby showers have been a special way to celebrate expecting parents and the new addition to the family for a long time, but here are a few ways to freshen up your baby shower and make it unique!

Couple’s Shower

A couple’s shower means that the dad-to-be gets to be involved too! Invite kids for a more casual event. Including everyone opens up options for group games and gift options!

A Baby Brunch

What’s better than mom-osas and breakfast foods with friends or family!?

A Sprinkle

A sprinkle is held for parents who already have one or more children. It’s a way to celebrate the mom-to-be with a get together, but not necessarily the expectations and gifts of a typical shower. Since parents often have much of what they need for the baby already, this is a way to sprinkle them with love before baby number two (or more) arrives!

A Sip & See

A sip and see is held after the baby arrives! It’s a way for friends and family to stop by to enjoy a drink and meet the baby! Everyone comes during a set time period to make it easy on the new parents. Create a sign up to have friends and family provide the family with meals or extra help!

Long Distance Shower

A long distance shower can be held in many ways, but here’s my favorite! Pick a specific day or week to have everyone send a note of encouragement or gift to the parents-to-be. What’s better than getting mail that’s personalized and special?! The new parents will be surprised when they open the mailbox and see that they have been “showered” with so many little notes and gifts.

Gender Reveal 

Gender reveals are a reason to celebrate with friends and family while finding out the gender of your baby. There are an endless number of ways to announce the gender, from gender reveal cakes and cupcakes to popping balloons filled with pink or blue confetti.

2. Pick a Personalized Theme

Baby shower themes have become much less traditional and more focused on the parents-to-be! Pastel “baby colors” are much less common than they were years ago. Fun, personalized themes are in! These days, it seems that any party theme can be used for a baby shower, which opens up the options for food, desserts, games and favors. Here are a few popular themes that we’ve seen for baby showers recently:

Baby-Q

A great way to create a casual atmosphere and very fitting for a couple’s shower theme as well. You can serve BBQ or make it a cookout with festive drinks and games!

 

“Taco ‘bout a Baby” Fiesta

Fiestas are a great time for tacos and margaritas as well as bright, colorful decorations.

 

Woodland 

Simple rustic styles with woodland animals, plaid and tree stumps have been popular themes for the past year or so. It’s a theme that can work for a baby boy, girl or a surprise which makes it very versatile.

How Can 3 Sweet Girls Help?!

For my own baby showers, we chose to have a “Taco ‘bout a Baby” Fiesta ladies lunch and a couples Baby-Q! I’ve included photos of some dessert ideas that we came up with! No matter your theme, we would love to help you with ideas for your baby shower cake, cupcakes, cake pops or dessert table!