A Birthday + Ingredient Challenge

I’ve quite simply had the best weekend ever. A night out for pizza and beer with good friends, a breakfast with my family, a romantic getaway with my man, and finally, cheese fondue, apple crisp and a movie with my best bud. I LOVE birthdays! While 23 seems like a bit of a dreary age with no extra special perks, my friends and family made it otherwise.

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A delicious cinnamon sugar birthday pizza at Woodstocks

This weekend was also an ingredient challenge weekend. The mystery ingredient is: Dates! I have had some Medjool Dates in the refrigerator for quite some time so this challenge was the perfect way to get me to use them up! Thanks to Jen’s informative post on date truffles I learned they last up to 6 months in the fridge! Who knew?!


Mix it all up real good. But not too good or it will make your baby date bits tough!


Place dollops of the dough into your mini muffin bake ware and top it off with chocolate.


Voila: Pumpkin Date Cake Bites


Pumpkin Date Cake Bites

  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin (let it drain out as much liquid as possible)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup pitted medjool dates, roughly chopped
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

How To:

Into a bowl sift together the flour, the baking powder, the cinnamon, the nutmeg, the cloves, and the salt. In another bowl with an electric mixer cream the butter and the sugar, beat in the egg. Mix in pumpkin and the vanilla. In a small bowl toss the dates with 1/4 cup of the flour mixture until they are coated well. Gradually add the remaining flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture, beating slowly, and stir in the date mixture and the pecans, stirring until the batter is combined well. Drop the batter into mini muffin tins and bake in a preheated 350°F. oven for 15-20 minutes.

Check out all the other great Ingredient Challenge Recipes contenders for more spectacular date recipes:

And Love It Too!

Marci Gilbert

Dixie Chik Cooks

Also wishing Nutritionella a speedy recovery so she can participate next week!

From the Little Yellow Kitchen,



16 Responses to “A Birthday + Ingredient Challenge”

  1. I think I can get my husband to eat these muffins! Ha! Great recipe girls. Thanks for the LUV as usual!

  2. happy birthday Lauren…I will try your date muffins in honor of your special and hopefully not to dreary day! They look yummy and I’m sure I can find help eating them.

  3. Those are super cute and look so gooey inside. Mmmm.

  4. Those look so yummy! I bet these taste amazing 🙂

  5. They look really sweet and delicious 🙂 lovely bites 🙂

  6. Oh, I can guarantee you that 23 won’t be mundane. Embrace it and have a wonderful year! Love the recipe. I think I can make these gluten-free by simply using my gf flour mix so they can work in our house.

  7. Happy Belated Birthday, Lauren! Love the creation – I bet the flavor of pumpkin + dates is incredible & will have to make them myself! Thanks for the get well wishes… I’ll be back in action soon!

  8. I’m not going to lie….that looks really good. I have been trying to find good recipes to make pumpkin cookies or muffins but without sugar. I would much rather use stevia powder. I have been wondering what other ingredients to use and I think you nailed it on the head for me. It looks amazing. Oh I also wanted to let you know that the Vitamin C smoothie is making my mouth water. Keep up the good work!


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