MK Life Tips: My Open House Top Recipes

I hold an open house at least once per week, and every time I do, my goal is to create an experience for anyone that walks through the door. That includes mood music, candles, printed informative flyers, and of course fresh baked goods. I LOVE baking, but my waistline prefers I make my treats for others, and this allows me the opportunity to do just that. I’ve compiled below my go to recipes that are “a real crowd pleaser”.


1. Ina Garten’s Chocolate Chunk Cookie

These cookies are absolutely insane. They’re so good, that people often take two at my open houses! The secret I add to the recipe is making 24 hours in advance, and letting the batter marinade covered in the fridge overnight. I don’t know what the fridge gods do to it, but it makes a total difference in the final product. TIP: You can even make the batter, use an ice cream scoop to form the size cookie you prefer, then freeze the dough. Then just simply unthaw and bake as needed. Say yes to fresh baked cookies on demand!


2. Pumpkin or Banana Bread

I make a quick bread every week, regardless if I’m planning to use it at my open house. Reason being, my adorable nieces who live just three blocks up the road, enjoy Aunt Mo’s bread more than most things in this world. Therefore, I’ve made about 100 loaves over the past 4 years. My go to banana bread recipe is actually my own (see below a printable card) after a few modifications from other versions I’ve tried. The pumpkin bread is a great recipe from Martha Stewart that is actually made with gluten free flour. I sub in the real deal, but its a great option for those who are gluten intolerant. The result of both is a cozy, creamy, sweet bread that is great with coffee or with a pad of salted butter.

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3. Ina Garten’s Apple Pie Bars

If you are looking to make a sweet treat that might also double up by offering health benefits, this is not your recipe. LOL. While making, I was somewhat concerned by the amount of butter and sugar, but hey - that’s how my girl Ina does it! I will say that the end result is so decadent and delicious, you only need a small slice, so not too much damage is done. While you whip up this recipe, the scent of cinnamon and sugary apples fill your home and truly captures the essence of the wonderful fall season, making the final product fresh out of the oven so hard to resist.