All Posts By Amanda Rettke

Amanda is a wife, mom, baker and creative force behind iambaker.net. She homeschools her four children, lives in the land of 10,000 lakes and is self-appointed president of the Committee to Get Ina Garten on Twitter. (Amanda tweets at @iambakertweets)

The Ultimate Banana Split Cake

by in View All Posts, June 2nd, 2016

The Ultimate Banana Split CakeOnce the weather heats up, the first thing I crave is a homemade banana split: ice cream, strawberry topping and whipped cream, surrounded by bananas covered in hot fudge. A classic for sure.

Turning that classic summertime dessert into a cake was a brilliant suggestion from a good friend who shares the same passion for those amazing flavors as I do! One word of advice: Be sure to time out your recipe. The fantastic frozen banana bites should be made ahead of time and properly chilled before you add them to the cake. You may also notice that I used a canned strawberry pie filling — this was very intentional! It really adds to the authentic banana-split flavor.

Once the cake is fully assembled, it should be eaten right away. Leftovers are not an issue, as it is so good people always want more.

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How to Make a Stunning Rainbow Cake with Gold Ombre Layers for St. Patrick’s Day

by in Holidays, Recipes, March 15th, 2016

Rainbow Cake with Gold Ombre LayersOne of the most-colorful symbols of St. Patrick’s Day is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. I set out to make a cake that incorporated a little of both: the bright, bold colors of the rainbow as well as the mysterious gold at the end! This cake has a simple buttercream rainbow design complemented with gold sprinkles around the upper edge. But that is not where the fun ends — once you cut into the cake you will see three beautiful golden ombre layers!

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Autumn in a Pan: Pumpkin Caramel Skillet Cake with Maple Glaze

by in Recipes, October 28th, 2015

Pumpkin Caramel Skillet Cake with Maple GlazeI’m going to make you a promise: This pumpkin cake will impress everyone who tries it. It will fill your kitchen with the sweet smell of homemade caramel sauce, the gentle and comforting spices of fall, and a warmth that cuts right through a bitterly cold wind. People often ask me for the recipe, and like a good Midwestern girl, I am happy to share!

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The Ultimate Fall Dessert: Apple-Cinnamon Layer Cake with Gooey Caramel Drizzle

by in Recipes, October 5th, 2015

Apple-Cinnamon Layer Cake with Gooey Caramel DrizzleThere is nothing quite as magical and comforting as fall baking. The changing colors of the leaves usually means we can start using cinnamon and apples. This impressive cake is filled with those familiar flavors, and it’s simply a wonderful way to enjoy the beauty and essence of fall.

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No-Bake Frozen S’mores Cheesecake

by in Recipes, July 29th, 2015

No-Bake Frozen S'mores CheesecakeI am all about easy and fun this summer. We strive to spend as much time outside as possible, but when I am inside, in front of a hot oven is the last place I want to be. That’s why this recipe is a great one: It has a really fun and eye-catching design, and it is NO-BAKE!

This dessert was made with special care to honor the traditional s’more as much as possible. It has a thick graham cracker crust, and a rich and creamy chocolate cheesecake center topped with an ooey-gooey layer of melted marshmallows.

Get the recipe

Confetti Monkey Bread, Because Everything Is Better with Sprinkles

by in Recipes, May 29th, 2015

Confetti Monkey BreadIf you love monkey bread as much as I do, you are not going to want to miss this delicious from-scratch recipe. Imagine the delight and awe of a birthday boy or girl waking up to this delicious and beautiful treat.

You can make this from-scratch monkey bread in the morning or the night before, but if you are planning on making it the morning, be sure to get up early or plan on having it for brunch. When making bread from scratch there is a proofing period in addition to the baking, and this can add considerable time to the process.

If you read through the recipe, one thing you may have noticed is that I used cinnamon extract (commonly found in most grocery stores) in place of cinnamon. This was purely for aesthetic purposes, as I wanted to create a beautifully light and colorful monkey bread. If you are not opposed to a dark brown confetti bread, feel free to omit the extract and substitute 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon.

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Bake Your Cake and Eat It Too: A Lighter, Naked Chocolate Cake with Fruit

by in Recipes, January 10th, 2015

Skinny Chocolate CakeIf there is one thing that most of us can agree on, it is that we have the best of intentions when it comes to New Year’s resolutions. We want to eat better, exercise more, watch less TV and save money.

But it is hard. While I cannot help with all of those resolutions, I can try to help with the “eating better.”

This stunning cake is a Naked Cake, or a cake that is made with less sugar and fat and has fewer calories. The trick to making a delicious chocolate naked cake is using a good-quality chocolate and a flavorful sugar substitute. The star of the cake is in fact the chocolate. I used a good-quality cocoa powder and mini chocolate chips and then complemented them with the sweet natural sugars found in the fruits that adorn the cake.

Add to that a homemade whipped cream (where you can control the sugar) and a no-fat chocolate sauce, and you have a decadent cake that will satisfy all your sweet cravings!

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Holiday Entertaining Made Easy: Wake Up to Breakfast Cookies

by in Entertaining, Holidays, December 16th, 2014

Breakfast CookiesI find that breakfast is one of the hardest meals to plan for in entertaining. People seem to get up at different times, and coordinating a delicious treat for everyone, no matter the time they wander into the kitchen, is a never-ending struggle. Well, it was before I stumbled upon the idea for scrumptious breakfast cookies.

What makes the perfect breakfast cookie? After performing a very informal poll, I determined that people like a low-sugar cookie. They also seem to really like the addition of oatmeal. Most folks feel that cookies without oatmeal are like a regular cookie and therefore a bit to decadent for an early morning treat. As far as the addition of chocolate, it was determined that less is more. While everyone loves an ooey-gooey chocolate cookie in the afternoon, a morning cookie should utilize a hint of chocolate, so it is more of an accompanying flavor — not the star of the show.

I am sharing three recipes for breakfast cookies that are easy to make, assemble and serve. These are not your average oatmeal-and-raisin cookies. These unique flavors will delight the taste buds and are the perfect complement to all holiday entertaining.

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One Recipe for Brownies, Five Fun (and Easy) Ways to Jazz Them Up

by in Recipes, May 3rd, 2014

One Recipe for Brownies, Five Fun Ways to Jazz Them UpBrownies: Whether cakey or fudgy, milk or dark chocolate (or blondies), they’re a treat even the pickiest of eaters can get behind. The next time you whip up a batch, think outside the box. Use your favorite brownie recipe (or try one of Food Network‘s) and check out these five ways to keep brownies the main event at the dessert table.

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How to Make Candy Corn Hi-Hat Cupcakes for Halloween

by in Holidays, October 15th, 2013

Candy Corn Hi-Hat CupcakesHi-hat cupcakes are one of the most beautiful and decadent ways to enjoy a cupcake; while they can seem intimidating, they are actually very easy to make.

I am a big fan of surprise-inside treats and my cupcakes are no exception. These hat cupcakes hide a sweet fall-inspired surprise that replicates the colors of candy corn.

Find out what you’ll need to make these cupcakes