The best of Chocolate, Chocolate and more 2013

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The Best of Chocolate, Chocolate and more 2013

It’s the end of another year. I’m not a big one for resolutions. I know I’ve got the same ones everyone else has, Eat healthier, exercise more, save a little more money… And I know that I’ll break them all at some point in time. But I do keep trying. That’s the real point of a resolution, in my opinion. To remember it occasionally. To choose the healthy salad over the huge hamburger, only take 2 cookies instead of 4. Walk to the mail box instead of driving. 

I look at the end of the year as a time for reflecting back on what’s happened during the past year. My kids are growing up so fast. They don’t need me as much as they used to when they were small. I even have one now with a “real” boyfriend, boy is that scary. My oldest just has one more year of high school and then he’ll be heading off to college. Scary.  My youngest is now in middle school, I don’t have a baby anymore.

2013 is also the year I’ll remember as the year that I knew I was really able to create something amazing. This site. This blog. This thing that started out as just a fluke to share what my girls and I were baking up during summer vacation of 2011. I didn’t even know how to keep track of analytics for the first 10 months, I just knew I got excited when I so that 20 people visited to check out my recipes on any day. In 2012, I realized this blog was more than just a hobby, and in 2013 I took things to the next level. I learned about photography. My photos still aren’t what you’d see in a magazine, but they are now something to show you how yummy a recipe might taste. I moved from Blogger to self hosted WordPress (the scariest thing a blogger can do.) I learned about SEO. I started optimizing my Social Media game.

There’s still much more I need to learn and want to do for this site but I must be doing something right. In 2013, 1,880,000 Unique Visitors found something worth looking at on this site. I’ve received  many comments, e-mails, facebook messages telling me that you’ve made my recipes, that your families loved them, that you’ve added your own special twist to a recipe. I love that! My goal has always been to share recipes that people would try in their own kitchens.

I thought it only fitting to share what you, my readers, thought were some of the best recipes from this year.

The Best of Chocolate, Chocolate and more 2013

Reeses Chocolate Peanut Butter Magic Bars

15. Reeses Chocolate Peanut Butter Magic Bars-Reese’s Cups are in the top 3 for all time favorite candies so to put them on top of this already scrumptious bar, well, it’s just a match made in heaven!

Caramel Pecan Sticky Buns, so easy to make and so good, you'll want to make them every weekend!

14. Caramel Pecan Sticky Buns-These rolls take a little bit of time but as you can see, the effort is worth it. And they’re not hard to make at all. I promise, your family will be fighting to get that extra caramel off the plate too!

Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuits

13. Red Lobster Cheddar bay Biscuits-No one makes biscuits like Red Lobster, so addicting!  I promise, these taste just like them. Don’t skimp  on the garlic butter.

Red Velvet Cake Batter Fudge

12. Red velvet Cake Batter Fudge-If you’re a fan of Red velvet then it is a fudge you’ll love! So easy to make and perfect for so many occasions!

Hershey Kissed Brownie Bites

11. Hershey Kissed Brownie Bites-can you really go wrong adding a Hershey Kiss to the top of anything? These Brownie Bites are easy to make and even easier to gobble up!

Copy Cat Chick-Fil-A Chicken Nuggets

10. Copycat Chick-Fil-A Nuggets-seriously some of the best fried chicken around! Great for lunch and dinner or even as part of a snack/appetizer table for a party!

Pumpkin Pie Crunch-A new pumpkin treat to love!

9. Pumpkin Pie Crunch-I can honestly say, as someone who’s not a fan of Pumpkin, that I loved this dessert! I heard from many of you that you did too!

Key Lime Pound Cake

8. Key Lime Pound Cake-This cake was such a great change up from the usual lemon. The lime flavor both in the cake and the glaze…yup, I’m drooling just remembering it.

Frozen Mocha Frappuccino

7. Mocha Frappuccino-This just be my favorite drink of the summer. Frozen Coffee, milk, a straw, just need some warm weather and a good book and I’ll be sipping these on the back deck again!

Cherry White Chocolate Pudding Cookies

6. Cherry White Chocolate Pudding Cookies-seriously, I can’t believe how well these cookies turned out. Just playing around in the kitchen, these cookies are a hit. I love the taste, the color, the white chocolate chips!

Strawberries and Cream White Chocolate Bark from

5. Strawberries and Cream White Chocolate bark-I knew the minute I saw the freeze dried Strawberries in Target that this bark would happen. It’s happened several times now, and it’ll happen again come Valentine’s Day. Things don’t have to be complicated to be amazing!

Cream Cheese Mints

4. Cream Cheese Mints-This recipe has been around for years, standing the test of time. These mints are perfect for any occasion!

Buckeye Bark-so easy to make, so hard to resist!

3. Buckeye Bark-Chocolate and Peanut Butter! Why spend time rolling all those balls for traditional Buckeye candy?

Smores Cookie Bars

2. Smores Cookie Bars-Who needs a campfire to enjoy the classic combination of Chocolate, marshmallows and graham crackers? These bars are amazing and and easy to make!

Cake Batter Fudge-so easy to make and so good to eat!

1. Cake Batter Fudge-Sprinkles just make everything more fun! Not even 10 minutes to make, this sweet fudge will have your crowd smiling and asking for more!

Now I would be short changing you to say that these were the top posts of 2013 without including the most viewed post of the year. It wasn’t a recipe but a round up of 50 amazing recipes from other blogs.

50 cookies for christmas

50 Cookies for your Christmas Plate-This just proves, you can never have too many cookie recipes!

As we end 2013 and start off a new year, I just want to thank all of you who come to this site, read my stories, try my recipes, leave comments, give feedback…I love and appreciate you all. Happy New Year to you and yours, stay safe and God Bless.

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About Joan Hayes

Mom to 3 teens, sweets and travel are her passions. Joan really does love her chocolate. She has a secret stash she hides from the kids and she has at least one bite of something chocolatey every day. She creates easy recipes any skill level can achieve to satisfy the sweet tooth in everyone!


  1. Congrats on all that you have accomplished in 2013 and I cannot wait to see what 2014 has in store!

  2. those Reese magic bars and the red velvet fudge are tow of my faves! What an amazing year it has been – you deserve ALL of the success that has cone your way, and I am SO very happy to have been able to meet you. Looking forward to an amazing 20114

  3. Wiping the drool off my chin… I absolutely love love LOVE all your fudge recipes!! Cheers to a great year, my friend, and let’s toast to many, many more! I am SO HAPPY we got to meet in person…I can’t wait to see you again! Happy New Year! xoxo

  4. Bonnie Bolt says:

    I wish you could/would make the recipes in category downloadable files……I love them so much I hate to think I might lose one of mine or other friends favorites. Something to think about

  5. What a delicious year Joan!! Here’s to a tasty 2014! Happy New Year!

  6. Congratulations on another wonderful year! I found your recipes about mid year and have tried shared and enjoyed many of them! Here’s wishing you another great year in 2014!!!

  7. Thank you for this. It ensures that I didn’t miss any of your fabulous recipes. Happy 2014!

  8. Sounds like a great year for you! And I can see why – so many great recipes. The buckeye bark is on my list. Happy New Year, Joan!

  9. Congratulations on all that you have accomplished! I just recently started a facebook page and blog and hope to get to where you are one day. I’m totally learning as I go. Up until last month I was the most computer illiterate person you would ever meet. BUT I set up the blog all by myself happy New Year!

  10. I’ll take 247 of everything, please. Here’s to another 12 months of delicious. Happy New Year, Joan!

  11. Melissa in Utah says:

    I recently came across your website/blog. I too am a lover of chocolate and love
    to bake. I am very impressed with your recipes and the pictures of your final product. Thank you for sharing. I am very excited to try your yummy recipes. The lunch lady brownies and buckeye bark will be among the first I try.
    Chocolate and baking does make the world a better place and makes for happy families.

    Happy baking!

  12. Great project !!

    I would love you to come and share @ Craft, Create & Inspire linky party !!!

    Look forward to seeing you there 🙂

    Claire x

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