Category Archives: breakfasts

Coffee Cake


Every year, when I was in elementary and middle school, our family would drive 7 hours to visit my grandparents.  While the car ride always felt like forever, the week went by in a second.  My grandparents lived on acreage, and it was so much fun exploring the “vast beyond” of their backyard.  Northern California is such a different environment than the Pacific Northwest and I loved viewing the different plant and animal life nature had to offer.


One of the things that my grandma always made for breakfast was coffee cake.  Right out of the oven, all nice and warm.  These little bites of heaven are moist with a bit of cakey-ness on top–perfect with a tall glass of milk.  Every time I make these I am transported back to my grandmother’s house and her sunny kitchen.  Ahh, the memories of childhood. Continue reading


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Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Scones


It NEVER fails.  Every time I go to a coffee shop, I always order a scone with my drink.  I don’t know what compels me to do so.  Maybe I subconsciously think that my coffee will taste better.  Maybe I just really like scones.  Rarely do I order the same scone, but I always order the same drink.  I know, I’m weird like that.


I have had scones that are dry, dense, and hard.  (Maybe that’s where the coffee/scone combo came into my head–the coffee helped me eat the scones!)  These scones are flaky and soft and anything but dry.  The cinnamon adds a nice touch and is not overpowering at all.  Eating it with a dab of the lemon cream makes it taste like heaven–light and refreshing.  Continue reading

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Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes with Blueberry Syrup


I am not an early morning person.  My alarm is set to the exact time that I HAVE to get up in order to be out the door by 6:45 AM, with absolutely no wiggle room.  So, on the off-chance something goes wrong in this morning routine, (i.e. I’m having a bad hair day), I have not accounted for that extra time, and usually run around the house exclaiming, “I’m late! I’m late!” (But of course, not in that weird white-rabbit-Alice-in-Wonderland voice.)  All that to say that I don’t build time in my daily routine to eat breakfast.  I usually grab something quick, like a yogurt or granola bar, and eat it once I get to work–and that’s if I remember.  I get distracted in the emails to check and any last minute prep work to finish before the students walk in the classroom.  Hmmm, I think I see a pattern here.


Anyway, Saturday mornings are my favorite for two main reasons.  One, my kids are now getting old enough that I get to sleep in–until 8 AM!  (Prior to having kids, that felt like my super-early-weekdays-wake-up call, but now, it’s heaven.)  And two, we get to have a leisurely start to our day.  I try and protect this precious time, as it allows us to bond as a family and just slow down from the busyness of everyday life.  The kids get to stay in their pjs, which for some odd reason they just love, and I make a homemade breakfast of their choice.

Pancakes are my kids’ favorite food and they request it almost every day.  They usually ask for lots of whip cream and syrup to go with it.  I blame grandparents for that one–they know how to spoil children. Continue reading

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Christmas Scones

CS1Thanksgiving flew by and now Christmas is almost here.  I have been piled under a mountain of essays these past few weeks and have just now emerged. Yeah to Christmas Break almost being here!  And speaking of Christmas, one tradition that I had growing up was my mom making cinnamon rolls Christmas morning.  In elementary and middle school, I was up before the rolls were done, but once I hit high school, it was the smell of the rolls from the oven that awoke me.  (You can read about these cinnamon rolls here .)   Now that I have children of my own, I am thinking about what traditions I want to continue, and a large breakfast spread is on the top of my list!


I had some leftover fresh cranberries from Thanksgiving that I wasn’t sure what to do with.  And believe it or not, I have never worked with fresh cranberries before.  Wow, what a difference is fresh versus dried! I didn’t realize how naturally sweet fresh cranberries are! I’m not sure I’ll ever go back.  Dried, schmied…well, maybe in a salad.   Continue reading


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Apple Puff Pancakes

So I have been on hiatus for a year and a half.  Wow, I wasn’t planning on taking that long of a break!  During my absence, I put off renewing my website domain name.  Actually, it was more of a lapse on my part, one of those I’ll-get-to-it-when-I-have-a-free-moment kind of lapses.  However, when I did get around to renewing it about a month later, not thinking too much about any repercussions that might have ensued, I was quite shocked that my blog name was no longer available.  WHAT??? I’ve had this blog name for 4 years. Four long years! After some investigating, a friend figured out someone from Japan had snatched up my name.  I am sure this person was waiting for me to BEG for my name back, at any price, but this only fueled my complete annoyance at this person (and complete annoyance is an understatement).  (By the way, if you do go to the website, it has absolutely nothing to do with baking.  Just warning you.)

But truth be told, I wasn’t fully sold on my web name.  It does come from my favorite novel, Pride and Prejudice, but my idea many years ago of starting a side business of baking out of my home came with too many bumps in the road.  So while creating a new blog name, I thought about what I wanted this blog to be, how often I would like to post, and what creative outlet I wanted it to serve.  With that in mind, I decided to just simply call it Holly Bakes, because, well, that’s mostly what I do on this blog.

I can’t guarantee that I’ll post every week, as I have two young kids and work full-time, but I can guarantee that what is put on here is fantastic food and something I hope you’ll try and share with your family.  And if you do, I’d truly love to hear from you.  Sometimes writing and sending posts out into cyberspace feels like such a lonely vacuum.  So, without further adieu, here is my first post in a year and a half.  Enjoy! xoxo



We went to an apple orchard on a dreary, drizzly, October day.  Actually, this is quite common for the Northwest, so we were prepared with raincoats, umbrellas, and goulashes.  My parents have friends who own this orchard and had a fun morning planned for kids; both Matthew and Grace had a blast riding in a four-wheeler, eating delicious applesauce, and picking what apples they could reach.  I couldn’t help but laugh at Grace as she tried carrying the bucket full of apples as we moved our way down the row of trees.


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10 Fall Favorite Recipes

To me, fall always brings on a sense of warmth and comfort.  Cozy fires, warm apple-cider, family gatherings.  In this post, I thought I’d share with you my top 1o favorite fall recipes.  And at the end of the post are some of my other favorite fall recipes from blogs that I follow.  I hope you’re inspired to make some of these today.  Enjoy! xoxo

My Top-10 Fall Recipes

Apple Crisp

Caramel Apples

Cream Cheese Apple Dip

Owl Sugar Cookies

Pecan Bars

Pretzel Jello

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White and Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

It’s just been one of those weeks.  Ever have one?  You know, where when something goes wrong, everything goes wrong?  I’m not big into superstition, but I do tend to believe that bad things happen in threes.  If I’ve had two bad things happen, I’m on pins and needles until the third comes.  Then I can breathe.  I’d tell you my three things, but that’d be a depressing post, so I’ll stick to something happy.

To cheer myself up, and the fact that chocolate and fruit are all I crave now, I baked up some muffins.  I made them early in the morning, so my house could stay somewhat cool the rest of the day.  (Thank goodness Eric put in the wall AC unit!  I told myself I didn’t want to be pregnant in the summer again, but, well….that didn’t happen.  Actually, I can’t complain too much; Oregon summers are fantastic.  It’s been in the mid-80s all week and I love it.)

As a special treat, I gave Matthew one for breakfast.  They are muffins, after all.  (I told him to smile for the camera, but I guess smiling means lean your head forward.  Apparently we need to work on that.) Continue reading

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