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Caramel Coconut Cream Cups

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These chewy coconut cookie cups filled with rich chocolate and fluffy cream cheese are topped off with soft caramel, chocolate and toasted coconut.  More than delicious, these are truly a unique dessert that will have all your friends and family wondering how in the world you made them!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 c.  yellow cake mix (any variety)
  • 2 c. crushed coconut cookies (I use WalMart brand)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. vegetable oil
  • 1 c. shredded coconut
  • 1/4 c. whipping cream
  • 1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 16 Kraft Caramels (unwrapped)
  • 7 oz. sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 c. margarine
  • 6 oz. Philadelphia cream cheese (softened)
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 4 oz. Cool Whip (refrigerator temperature)
  • 12 oz. Wilton Dark Candy Cocoa Melts

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In a mixing bowl combine cake mix, crushed coconut cookies, eggs and oil.  Blend well.
  • Scoop batter evenly into 12 un-greased muffin tins, pressing it down with spoon.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.
  • Spread coconut over a small cookie sheet and toast at the same time your cups are baking for 10 to 15 minutes (check often to prevent burning!)
  • While cookie cups bake, make your fillings:
  1.  Chocolate ganache:  Place whipping cream in a small saucepan and heat it over the stove until it just starts to bubble at edges (20-30 seconds).  Turn off heat, add chocolate chips, over and allow to sit on warm burner for 5 minutes.  After 5 minutes, stir until smooth.
  2. Caramel Sauce:  Place caramels, condensed milk and margarine in a saucepan and heat until caramels are fully melted and mixture is smooth (about 5 minutes)  stir constantly.
  3. Cream filling:  Combine cream cheese with sugar  until smooth.  Fold in Cool Whip.
  • Remove coconut from oven when it is a toasty brown.  Place in bowl to cool.
  • Remove cookie cups from oven.  They look like muffins at this point–using a tart shaper or the end of a wooden spoon, press the middles of the muffin in to form a cup shape. (NOTE:  because ovens vary in temperature, your cups may need to bake longer.  When you press the middle in it should look a little oily from the coconut oil in the cookies- but it should hold its shape–  if it’s doughy and wont stay pressed down, place it back in the oven for a few minutes.)
  • Tip the muffin pan over a clean counter to release the cups and carefully turn them all upright to cool.
  • Melt chocolate candy coating in microwave in 30 second increments, stirring between until smooth.
  • Dip the top edge of each cup into the chocolate and then sprinkle with toasted coconut.
  • Spoon chocolate ganache evenly into each cup.
  • Place cream filling in a large ziplock.  Cut one corner and pipe the cream evenly into each cup.
  • Spoon caramel sauce evenly over each cup.
  • Drizzle any left-over candy coating over each cup and top with remaining coconut.
  • Keep refrigerated until serving.
  • Makes 12 cups.

My thoughts:  I “invented” this recipe for Kraft using Philadelphia Cream Cheese.  It has some of my favorite flavor combinations– coconut, chocolate and caramel– amazing!  It is also a great texture combination: chewy, creamy crunchy….yum.  This is a fairly time-consuming recipe.  If you love baking it is FUN FUN FUN!!!!  (I’m actually a little addicted to making these!)  I can’t give it an “easy recipe” tag though– its just too involved.  If you get a chance to try these let me know what you think!  Enjoy!!!! r-



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