DESSERT DAY!

Happy Dessert Day! Quite possibly one of the BEST food holidays of the year. Too bad I'm sitting here snacking on raw vegetables as I type this. Stupid 21-day fix meal plan. If I weren't so dedicated on making it work, I'd be breaking it just for a slice of cheesecake. Anyway, to celebrate I am sharing some tasty recipes you'll want to whip up this weekend, especially if it's chilly like it is in Chicago. If you prefer to have your treats made for you, we've got something for you as well!

Let's start with where to grab a tasty treat in Chicago. Cocoa + Co. in Old Town is full of all kinds of sweet treats, and some even salty! Take a look at some of their fall-inspired treats below:

CARAMEL APPLES: Hand-dipped local, sustainably-grown apples from Green City Market favorite, Nicholas Farm ($7.50 each)
* Toppings include cracked pecan pieces, salted Spanish Marcona almonds and peanuts. Add a drizzle of melted 64% single-origin Ecuadorian chocolate if you like. 

 Photo c/o Cocoa + Co

Photo c/o Cocoa + Co

MATCHA TEA LATTES: Made with Kilogram Organic Matcha, a pure, stone-ground, ceremonial-grade powder made from shade-grown green tea leaves. (12 oz. $6.25)
* Green Tangerine: flavored with tangerine and a touch of lavender, then lightly sweetened with honey
* The Geisha: flavored with cardamom pods and rose water
* The M2: flavored with mango and lightly sweetened with honey

 Photo c/o Cocoa + Co

Photo c/o Cocoa + Co

PUMPKIN
* Pumpkin Chai Lattes: Kilogram chai tea blended with real pumpkin (12 oz. $5)
* Pumpkin Hot Coca: Made with chopped whole-bean 64% single origin Ecuadorian cacao (not cocoa powder or sugary syrup), and blended with real pumpkin puree for a seasonal spin on their Classic Dark drinking chocolate (8oz. $5.25)
* Pumpkin Pie Baked Oatmeal: Organic rolled oats and almond milk are blended with local pumpkin puree, eggs, a little honey and pie spices then baked up to create a satisfying way to start the day ($4.75)
* Pumpkin Caramel Turtles: Pumpkin caramel studded with roasted pepitas and topped with milk chocolate ($3.50 each)

 Photo c/o Cocoa + Co

Photo c/o Cocoa + Co

SEASONAL BARK
* Dark chocolate topped with roasted pepitas, dried cherries, sea salt and edible gold flakes packaged in clear "Chinese take-out" boxes (small, $12; large, $22.50)

Now, if you're more interested in whipping a few desserts on your own, try some of these delicious bites:
Apple Cinnamon Galette - Lattes, Life & Luggage
Black-Bottom Cheesecake Bars - My Mommy Brain
Chocolate Avocado Brownies - Mom's Messy Miracle
Coconut Cream Bars - Beauty In The Mess
Cookies and Cream Cheesecake In a Jar - Mom's Messy Miracle
Easy Caramel Apple Crescent Rolls - Living la Vida Holoka
Fried Pecan Pie - Glitz & Grits
Gluten-Free & Sugar-Free Spiced Apple and Orange Pie - Beauty In The Mess
Homemade Miniature Strawberry Pies - Beauty In The Mess
Peach Apricot Cobbler - Lattes, Life & Luggage
Pumpkin Spice Dirt Cupcakes - Mom's Messy Miracle