Vanilla Cupcakes + Calphalon Bakeware Giveaway!

by Kathy Strahs on March 25, 2010 · 98 comments

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Cooking On the Side is one year old today! What better way to celebrate than with the best vanilla cupcakes I’ve ever made and a bakeware giveaway?

I started this blog after becoming intrigued by all of the recipes I noticed on the side of the food packages in my pantry, fridge and freezer. After writing Panini Happy for a little over a year I felt a yearning to explore food blogging beyond sandwiches. “Revealing” these recipes has been an incredibly rewarding (and tasty!) ongoing project – thank you all so much for your thoughtful comments, for sharing the recipes and for coming along for the ride.

And now for the giveaway…

I love my Calphalon cookware and bakeware and have used it to prepare pretty much every dish on this blog. So in honor of my 1st anniverary on Cooking On the Side I want to send one lucky reader a Calphalon Classic 5-Piece Bakeware Set.* It includes the following:

  • 12-by-17-inch jelly roll pan
  • 6-cup muffin pan
  • 8-by-5-inch loaf pan
  • 2 round 8-inch cake pans

That ought to set you up pretty nicely for a whole lot of baking!

[THE CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED] TWO ways to enter the giveaway:

  1. Leave a comment on this postWhat was the best dish you cooked or baked in the past year? Feel free to leave a link to the recipe if you have one!
  2. Leave a comment on the “It’s GIVEAWAY Time!” post on the Cooking On the Side Facebook Fan page (there’s another question to answer over there).

You can enter once in each place, for a total of 2 entries. That’s it – no other crazy hoops to jump through. That said, if you feel like tweeting this giveaway I’ll love you forever. 🙂

The giveaway closes on Monday, March 29, 2010 at 12:00 PM PDT. Each entry will be assigned a number and one winner, selected at random via, will be announced on Tuesday, March 30, 2010. Due to shipping costs, this giveaway is open to readers with U.S. and Canadian addresses only. [THE CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED]

* This is not a sponsored giveaway. It is funded 100% by yours truly.

Who wants cake? (Recipe follows)

See the Recipe Index for all the recipes on Cooking On the Side.

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{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }

nancy March 25, 2010 at 5:37 PM

i LOVE Pioneer woman’s shortcake cake! it is fabulous!


Carole Resnick March 25, 2010 at 6:32 PM

The best thing I made this year was my Christmas treat, Peppermint Cannoli. I, for sure, need some new bakeware, especially Calphalon.
.-= Carole Resnick´s last blog ..THE WINNER IS……. =-.


susan marie March 25, 2010 at 6:47 PM

The best/favorite dish I discovered is a Fresh Tomato Mozzarella Tart with Basil/Garlic Crust from the food blog Ezra Poundcake. It’s a fabulous way to use the tomatoes and basil from your garden – a classic summer dish!


Jess March 25, 2010 at 8:05 PM

I made some awesome whole wheat blueberry muffins! They were healthy and delicious all at once!


Daniel March 25, 2010 at 8:30 PM

A bread pudding for Christmas with figs, cardamom, and grains of paradise.


Amy March 25, 2010 at 8:31 PM

Hi Kathy – I don’t need to be part of the giveaway…just wanted to say “Happy 1 Year!” It’s quite an accomplishment. Love both your blogs.


Shelley March 25, 2010 at 9:38 PM

Just made some orange chicken for the first time. I do love reading food and gardening blogs and have learned so much by them. Much more than food tv, really!


Deborah Dowd March 26, 2010 at 4:05 AM

I am more a cook than a baker, but one of my favorites this year was Dubliner cheese biscuits made from a recipe from Kerrygold- they were amazing!!!
.-= Deborah Dowd´s last blog ..Flourless Choco-Pama Cupcakes-A Simple Valentine’s Surprise =-.


Diane in MD March 26, 2010 at 4:53 AM

I have tried many new recipes this year that my family has enjoyed, but the one that most impressed them (and addressed a SERIOUS inadequacy in repertoire) was this chocolate chip cookie recipe:


Eliza Hackman March 26, 2010 at 5:21 AM

The best dish of the year was a Lemon cream cheese poundcake. Easy, ingredients that are on-hand and delicious as all get out!


Tangled Noodle March 26, 2010 at 6:44 AM

Happy First Blogoversary and wishing you many more happy days of cooking, baking, eating and bloggin! These cupcakes are a delicious way to celebrate.

I’d have to say that my best of the year are one sweet and one savory: sweet was a Filipino coconut jam that turned out so well and was so easy to make. I surprised myself with the savory: a leg of lamb that I put in the slow cooker and it came out so tender and juicy. I will definitely be making both again!


twyla March 26, 2010 at 7:02 AM

This is tough. A whole yr is hard to remember. The most unexpectedly delicious is Jamie Oliver’s Chicken with Milk. It’s amazing!


Russell March 26, 2010 at 8:41 AM

Father in law gave me a sourdough starter that is more than 35 years old. Makes the best pancakes ever.


fokxxy March 26, 2010 at 9:06 AM

Honestly.. I make a mean spaghetti!!! Love it. I am also a big fan of Christmas Morning Wifesaver (NO cornflakes version). They are both my favorite to make and my best recipes. Both have been tweaked over the years to perfection.


RLG March 26, 2010 at 9:36 AM

The best new dish I made this year is this salmon recipe:

Easy, and delicious even when I’m missing the peppers or tomatoes and I can use the lemons from my yard.


Meghan March 26, 2010 at 9:38 AM

Either my mother in law’s red beans and rice or the chocolate chess pie…


TaraTakesTheCake March 26, 2010 at 11:59 AM

Ina Garten’s Lemon Bars!


DatingVeg March 26, 2010 at 12:03 PM

baked mac & cheese, yum!


TayTayBu March 26, 2010 at 12:16 PM

That’s a tough one! I would have to go with David Lebovitz’s german chocolate cake!


Wendy March 26, 2010 at 12:18 PM
TayTayBu March 26, 2010 at 1:38 PM

i love vanilla cupcakes with chocolate ganache!


Kathy March 26, 2010 at 1:56 PM

Please just one entry per person – thanks!


Kevin (Closet Cooking) March 26, 2010 at 4:37 PM

Calphalon makes some nice bakeware!

The baked goat cheese marinara still haunts my memories calling out to me to make it over and over again. 🙂
.-= Kevin (Closet Cooking)´s last blog ..Spinach and Feta Quinoa Salad =-.


Puppydogs March 26, 2010 at 5:56 PM

One of the best recipes I have made are stuffed artichokes from all recipes. I did not use the lemon pepper-sounded too weird to me :)!


Steph March 27, 2010 at 4:44 AM

Ooo, those cupcakes look so cute. Best thing this year is probably smores cookies
.-= Steph´s last blog ..Cheddar and Dill Cream Biscuits =-.


cecilia March 27, 2010 at 6:04 AM

those cupcakes look yumm 🙂

for me it’d defiantly be vanilla cheesecake
simple stuff but ohh so delicious!


Sharlene March 27, 2010 at 6:55 AM

Tiramisu cupcakes. I get SUCH amazing compliments every time!


Alison March 27, 2010 at 7:00 AM

Thomas Keller’s chicken pot pie from Ad Hoc at Home


Katya March 27, 2010 at 8:30 AM

Happy blogaversary!! Those cupcakes seem like the perfect way to celebrate!
.-= Katya´s last blog ..Daring Bakers Orange Tian =-.


Cassee March 27, 2010 at 9:13 AM

One of the best things that I baked this past year was Apple Crisp. Love it!


theresa March 27, 2010 at 9:15 AM

My husband would say garlicky fries but my favorite are old fashioned chocolate chip cookies with some butterscotch chips thrown in.


Natalie March 27, 2010 at 9:38 AM

I recently made Turkish feta bread…the recipe can be found on Binnur’s Turkish Cookbook at So good!


Tenay March 27, 2010 at 3:33 PM

Congratulations on your blog’s birthday! The best thing I baked recently was a vanilla, chocolate swirl cheesecake. Yum, yum.


MaryB March 28, 2010 at 8:32 AM

Happy Blog-iversary! Those cupcakes look amazing!
The best thing I have cooked in the past year? Hmmm I think it was the engagement cake I made for my son and his fiance last July 😀
.-= MaryB´s last blog .. =-.


Jonnie H March 28, 2010 at 9:00 AM

I guess Christmas Dinner would be the best I’ve cooked in the past year. The turkey turned out great and I got compliments on the dressing and gravy.
.-= Jonnie H´s last blog Winner Announcement =-.


Erica Best March 28, 2010 at 1:30 PM

i made some stick bun this year and they turn out great i will make them again yum and congrats on ur 1st anniverary i have u have many more bloging years ahead


Erica March 28, 2010 at 3:08 PM

I’m going to say cake balls. I’m sure that’s not THE best, but I made them recently, and just thinking about how rich and chocolatey they were… mmmm…


shawna March 28, 2010 at 3:23 PM

best dish? hmmm. i’ve spent a lot of time learning how to make good pizza crust. im not there yet but this year i made a lot of progress, and i think thats the best so far. here’s to better pizza in 2010!


Jennifer March 28, 2010 at 3:24 PM

Oh my gosh, the best thing that I have baked so far this year is Chocolate Stout Cake w/ peanut butter filling/frosting and a chocolate ganache glaze … out of this world!


Rachel March 28, 2010 at 5:26 PM

This is hands down the best thing I have ever put into my mouth:

It takes forever to make, but it is SO WORTH IT. My family requests it for every single holiday or celebration but I can only bring myself to make it once a year for all the effort.


Leslie March 29, 2010 at 7:04 AM

Smoked beef brisket for a party. It cooked for about 10 hours! Yum!


Kathy March 29, 2010 at 7:26 AM

The all time favorite – Pioneer Woman Chocolate Sheet cake.
Love your site, by the way!!


Maria March 29, 2010 at 7:48 AM

We loved these chocolate caramel cookies with sea salt:

Great giveaway! Thanks!
.-= Maria´s last blog ..2peas3-0 =-.


DanGarion March 29, 2010 at 7:55 AM

I’d have to say it was the pork sirloin tip roast that I did last week. It turned out excellent. Strangely enough I found the recipe on a audio/visual message board. I’ll share it if I win… 🙂
.-= DanGarion´s last blog ..Spring 2010 Hiatus =-.


Indianapolis Amy March 29, 2010 at 8:07 AM

cut out & decorated butter cookies…I made them a few times this year.


Stephanie March 29, 2010 at 10:35 AM

Congrats on 1 year!
Best thing I baked this year is probably cookies and cream cake. Best thing I cooked is hard, but what first comes to mind is garlic cheese bread.


Ashley Betz March 29, 2010 at 3:39 PM

I fell in love with Paula Dean’s Better than sex cake!! People rave about it everytime I take it and it is so light that it just feels loike you are bighting into a sunny day.


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