Baker's Royale

75 Twists on All Your Favorite Sweets


By Naomi Robinson

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Baker’s Royale turns basic desserts upside-down with addictive flavors and gorgeous presentations: the only sweets book you’ll need this year!

Baker’s Royale is a dessert cookbook that revisits-and revamps-classic recipes for the modern baker. Naomi Robinson thinks outside the cake mix box in her kitchen and on her site,, mixing and matching for mash-ups that wow. Her exciting flavor combinations and eye for the easiest show-stoppers struck a chord, and readers clamored for more of her inventive sweets.

The book includes 75 classic recipes with a twist:

  • Burnt Caramel Custard Pie
  • French Silk Crunch Cake
  • Cannoli Cakelets
  • Raspberry Almond Opera Cake
  • Apple Pie Marshmallows

Shortcuts like premade cookie dough and candy garnishes make these desserts as practical as they are fanciful. Stunning photography throughout showcases Naomi’s unique style, which is as delicious as it looks.



I'VE NEVER BEEN a linear person in most aspects of my life. I like the twisting roads, the blind spots, the detours—it's where all the magical mistakes happen. It's through these unforeseen turns that sinkhole cakes turn into leveled beauties, imploding macarons become smooth and elegant, and weepy meringues transform into fluffy, chewy clouds. It's where you discover that cookie batter makes for the perfect, crisp foundation of a bark, that bright citrus has an elegant side with an infusion of Earl Grey tea, and that croissants—when soaked in a cinnamon-espresso custard—take bread pudding to a whole new level. For this self-taught baker, trial and error, experimentation, and jumping into the deep end with eyes squeezed shut have yielded some of the best treats and confections I could never have dreamed up on my own.

But I didn't always know that a winding path would lead me to the perfect job, too. Before I started baking—and writing about it—as a career, I was working in an office. I'd sit in meetings with frosting-smeared pants, working out in my head why a recipe was failing or how to get it to that next level of delicious. Instead of fielding e-mails and meeting deadlines, I was answering reader mail on my newly minted blog,

At home, it wasn't much better. Home-cooked meals turned into my trying to peddle cupcakes to my (gasp) cake-loathing son while we waited for my husband to come home with takeout. I ran the mixer past midnight. Self-maintenance slipped until I was washing my hair every third day (okay, more like every fourth day). I was trying to live a double—heck, triple—life: mom, office drone, and aspiring professional baking blogger. It wasn't long before the day came where I had to make a choice: keep up the status quo, or believe that all the sugar and butter I was creaming in every free minute was the answer to a calmer, more satisfying life.

I made the right choice.

I traded in Excel spreadsheets for kitchen tools and gained a community of home bakers who, regardless of their skill level, were baking along with me. They cheered me on, supported me when I felt like giving up, gave me invaluable feedback, and best of all, helped make me a better baker.

And that is exactly what this book is about: becoming a better baker. For the recipes in this book—just as on my blog—skill level carries no consequence. It doesn't matter whether you've been wielding your whisk for a month or a lifetime (or had to order one online just now to get started). Never mind if you've never worked with gelatin or if you don't know your tarts from your truffles. There is no prescribed program for becoming a "good" baker, no progression of recipes that leads to the perfect cake, no linear path. All mistakes are learning opportunities, and because it's baking, they tend to be just as delicious as the victories—if a little messier. Keep this in mind as you work your way through the desserts in this book: The success of the recipes is a foregone conclusion that only time and willingness dictates. You will eventually get to fluffy-as-a-dream frosting and perfectly coiffed candies. And whatever you do, don't be afraid of imperfection. Serve your layered cake even if it's not perfectly level! Arrange those misshapen bars on a platter as though you were serving the most beautiful dessert! Believe me, no one has ever told me, "Gosh, I'm not going to taste that less than perfect éclair."

Just get organized—seriously, you don't want to be shuffling around looking for pots, pans, and ingredients while you're trying to bake cupcakes—and get in the kitchen. I promise these recipes are going to get you there.

These recipes, after all, are just as big a part of my journey as baking in the first place. Five years ago, uninspired by baking the same old recipes, I began creating updated versions of the classics. Ho-hum cheesecake got a fluffy ricotta-based, lemon-scented facelift. Outdated spumoni got spun into a fresh and fun ice cream cake. The only criteria I used were: Is it delicious? Can it be for the everyday and the extraordinary? And will it look as if I spent all day working when, in fact, it really was a snap? Check, check, and check.

The desserts in this book are a fusion of refined classics and everyday indulgence: classic southern Chess Pie made über-decadent with brown butter and chocolate; the simple cupcake gone carnival with the addition of crispy funnel cake toppers; and truffles given an unexpected twist with the natural combo of beer and pretzels. Want to get fancy and create a crowd-pleaser without buying thirty ingredients and a $400 mixer? Then go for the Caramel, Pear, and Walnut Cake with Crème Fraîche Whipped Cream. Feeling nostalgic? Your childhood favorites now have just enough refinement to also feel grown-up, such as Graham Dutch Apple Pie and Cannoli Cakelets. You'll find that simple flavor pairings can turn ordinary ingredients into the most sophisticated upgrade, such as London Fog Blueberry Hand Pies and Apricot Coconut Bars. Need a morning kick-starter that will actually make you look forward to the alarm? Try Campfire Granola Bars or Mini Cinnamon Rolls. And let's not forget about such tried-and-true crowd-pleasers (and bake sale must-haves) as Caramel Popcorn Cookies and Chocolate Mousse Fudge Brownies. From small treats to belt-busters, get ready to have your candy, cake, and cookies and eat them, too.

Caramel-Filled Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Rocky Road Cookies

Apple Pecan Granola

Salted Dark Chocolate Chip and Roasted Pecan Cookies

Chocolate Mousse Fudge Brownies

Dark Chocolate and Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

Speculoos Brownie Cake

No-Bake Banana and Coconut Cookies

Campfire Granola Bars

Caramel Popcorn Cookies

Apricot Coconut Bars

Monster Cookie Bark

Chocolate and Raspberry Ooey-Gooey Bars

Chocolate-Dipped Orange and Earl Grey Shortbread Cookies

Kitchen Sink Cookie Bars

A few of my favorite things, to be sure. I love how easy they are to put together, and they never fail to scratch the comfort food itch. And because they're typically built on a very simple foundation (butter, sugar, eggs, flour, mix), playing around with these classic recipes is how I initially learned how to riff. No one's disappointed when such treats as Rocky Road Cookies, Campfire Granola Bars, or Speculoos Brownie Cake show up at a birthday party or bake sale.



I'm notorious for having a heavy hand when it comes dessert—I mean, why just make cookies when you can stuff them with caramel-filled chocolates?! This was one of my first forays into the world of candy-filled cookies, but I was hooked after the first batch. They're delightfully ooey-gooey and offer a starting point of crazy variations with no end, like stuffing your favorite cookie inside or other bite-size candy pieces (though this one's my favorite by far). My boys call them "dunkers" because there is so much dunking going on that by the end of the cookie-eating session, their milk has practically become chocolate cookie–flavored milk!

1 cup (120 g) all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon instant espresso powder

¼ teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons (86 g) unsalted butter

⅔ cup (60 g) unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

1½ cups (300 g) light brown sugar

2 large eggs, at room temperature

18 to 20 Rolos candies (one per cookie)

½ cup (59 g) confectioners' sugar, sifted


Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, espresso powder, and salt. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Remove from the heat and stir in the cocoa powder and brown sugar. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, whisking well before adding the next one.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Scoop out golf ball–size dough rounds and use your hands to roll the dough into a ball, then flatten to ¼ inch (6 mm) thick. Add a Rolo candy to the center and wrap the dough up around the candy. Roll this into an even ball, then roll it into the confectioners' sugar until heavily coated. Repeat with the remaining dough and candy.

Place the cookies 2 inches/5 cm apart on the prepared baking sheets and bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until the cookies look crinkly and have spread slightly. Let sit on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool briefly. Make sure to serve warm to get the gooey caramel.



It's hard to imagine a more popular bake sale sweet than a crispy rice cereal treat or chocolate chip cookie, and yet, you're looking at it. Maybe it's the toasted marshmallow top or the big chunks of chocolate and walnuts tucked into a soft, chewy cookie, but no need to wonder: just make a batch and watch them disappear.

4 tablespoons (55 g) unsalted butter

7 ounces (200 g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped

¼ cup (20 g) unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

3 large eggs, at room temperature

1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ cup (30 g) all-purpose flour

¾ cup (95 g) roasted salted almonds, chopped

1 cup (45 g) mini marshmallows


Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Remove from the heat and add the bittersweet chocolate and cocoa powder. Let sit for 30 seconds, then whisk the mixture until smooth. Set aside.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, mix together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, and salt until light and fluffy and the mixture becomes pale in color, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the chocolate mixture and mix until just combined. Sift in the flour and fold in until just combined. Fold in the almonds quickly and carefully scoop golf ball–size mounds of dough onto the prepared baking sheets, at least 2 inches/5 cm apart.

Gently press 5 marshmallows into each cookie, then bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until the marshmallows are toasty and the cookies have spread. The cookies will appear slightly underbaked. Let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.



I will clear off a shelf of boxed cereal for homemade granola anytime. It's the ideal snacking bite: sweet, savory, crunchy, and so easy to eat by the handful. If you think about it—despite its "healthy" disguise—granola is really just a deconstructed cookie, making it a great canvas for any kinds of add-ins that you'd normally save for a baked treat. To keep this recipe from being too loose, I added some brown rice syrup to help it clump—this way you can eat it as "almost" mini cookie bites. Try tossing it on top of just about anything from yogurt to ice cream, and even blitzing it into a smoothie. Feel free to swap in your favorite nuts or dried fruit!

1 cup (130 g) pecan halves, chopped

3 cups (300 g) old-fashioned rolled oats

½ cup (70 g) sunflower seeds

1½ teaspoons kosher salt

1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground allspice

¼ teaspoon ground cardamom

½ cup (125 ml) olive oil

¼ cup (65 ml) honey

¼ cup (65 ml) brown rice syrup

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

½ cup (45 g) sweetened shredded coconut

1 cup (110 g) sliced almonds

1½ ounces (42 g) dried apples, diced


Preheat the oven to 325°F (165°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Spread the pecans on the baking sheet and bake until toasted and golden, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer to a bowl. Set aside to cool, reserving the prepared baking sheet.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oats, sunflower seeds, salt, cinnamon, allspice, and cardamom. Stir in the olive oil, honey, brown rice syrup, and vanilla.

Transfer the oat mixture to the prepared baking sheet and press into a single layer. Bake undisturbed for about 30 minutes, or until the mixture is lightly browned and toasted in appearance. (For a looser granola, stir the mixture every 15 minutes.)

Sprinkle the coconut on top and bake for another 10 minutes. Remove the granola from the oven and stir in the almonds, dried apples, and toasted pecans. Set aside to cool completely on the baking sheet before serving or storing.

Store the granola in an airtight container for up to 7 days, at room temperature. Store in the refrigerator to extend the granola to 14 days.



When it comes to chocolate chip cookies, everyone has a go-to favorite—crispy, doughy, bite-size, head-size, and so forth. Well, this is mine: giant bakery style chocolate chip cookies dressed with dark chocolate, a double hit of pecan—pecan flour and chopped pecans—toasted coconut, and a touch of molasses to keep the cookies chewy. Sure, it's a little more work to toast and process a portion of the pecans to make pecan flour, but the combination of that and the toasted coconut is the secret to setting this chocolate chip cookie recipe apart from all the others. So, while I'm usually all about ingredient mixing and matching, I have to insist on this one that you stick with the recipe. I promise you won't be disappointed!

1½ cups plus 2 tablespoons (145 g) sweetened shredded coconut

2¼ cups (290 g) pecan halves, divided

2 cups (240g) all-purpose flour

¾ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

1 cup (225 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature

¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons (160 g) lightly packed brown sugar

½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar

1 large egg, at room temperature

1 large egg yolk, at room temperature

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1½ teaspoons molasses

12 ounces (340 g) semisweet chocolate, chopped into ½-inch (1.3 cm) chunks


Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Spread the coconut on 1 sheet and the pecans on the other. Bake until lightly toasted, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer the baking sheets to a wire rack to cool completely.

Once cooled, roughly chop the coconut and set aside. For the pecans, to make the pecan flour, portion out ¾ cup/68 g and pulse in a food processor to a fine crumb; set aside. Roughly chop the remaining 1½ cups/150 g and set aside.

In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Whisk in the coconut and pecan flour. Set aside.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat together the butter and both sugars until the mixture is light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Beat in the egg, mixing until fully combined. Add the yolk and beat until fully combined, followed by the vanilla and molasses. Add the flour mixture all at once and beat on low speed, until the dough just comes together and flour streaks are still visible. Using a wooden spoon, finish mixing the dough manually. Fold in the chopped chocolate and reserved chopped pecans. Transfer the dough to the refrigerator to chill for at least 3 hours.

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Scoop out about 3 tablespoons/85 g of dough and flatten the dough onto the parchment-lined baking sheets to form a 3-inch/7.5 cm disk, ½ inch/1.3 cm thick. Continue to form cookies on each baking sheet, spacing the disks 1 inch/2.5 cm apart.

Bake the cookies until lightly browned, 10 to 12 minutes. Allow to cool for 3 minutes on the baking sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.



My husband doesn't have much of a sweet tooth, but when it hollers, he goes for classic desserts like this. Sometimes with the mousse topping, sometimes without, but he never misses the opportunity to flavor his milk with brownie crumbs from repeated dunking.

For the brownies

1 cup (90 g) unsweetened cocoa powder

1 cup (120 g) all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

1 cup (225 g) unsalted butter, melted

1½ cups (300 g) granulated sugar

3 large eggs, at room temperature

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 teaspoon instant espresso powder

½ cup (65 g) pecans or hazelnuts, chopped (optional)

For the chocolate mousse

1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping cream

½ cup (60 g) confectioners' sugar

¼ cup (20 g) unsweetened cocoa powder

¼ teaspoon salt


Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line an 8-inch/20.5 cm square baking pan with parchment paper.

TO MAKE THE BROWNIES: In a medium bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder, and salt.

In a second medium bowl, mix together the butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and espresso powder. Add the flour mixture and mix well, being careful not to overmix. Fold in the pecans or hazelnuts, if using. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center barely comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely in the pan.

TO MAKE THE CHOCOLATE MOUSSE: In a large bowl, combine the cream, confectioners' sugar, cocoa powder, and salt. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes.

Top the brownie layer with the chocolate mousse frosting.



Don't be fooled by the humble appearance of these oatmeal cookies. The dark chocolate and cranberry pairing turns the standard comfort cookie into a real addiction.

1⅓ cups (175 g) all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon ground cardamom

1 cup (225 g) unsalted butter, cubed, divided

1 cup (200 g) light brown sugar

⅔ cups (140 g) granulated sugar

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

2 large eggs, at room temperature

4 cups (400 g) old-fashioned rolled oats

1 cup (170 g) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips

1 cup (120 g) dried cranberries


Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cardamom. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt half of the butter (½ cup/113 g). Remove the pan from the heat and add the remaining butter (½ cup/113 g) to let the residual heat melt it. Add the brown sugar, granulated sugar, and vanilla, and whisk to combine. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, making sure the first one is fully combined before adding the next one.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Fold in the oats, chocolate chips, and cranberries.

Using a medium cookie scoop or a tablespoon, drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto the baking sheets, 2 inches/5 cm apart.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cookies are golden brown. The cookies will be slightly underbaked at this point, but they will continue to bake as they cool on the baking sheet. Let the cookies cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.



This is the potluck/picnic/bake sale brownie everyone goes for. Maybe it's the fact that brownies are pretty much everyone's favorite baked treat, or maybe it's because this cakelike version is frosted with a speculoos cookie spread, a delicious store-bought concoction made from crumbled biscuits.

For the brownie cake

Nonstick cooking spray

½ cup (113 g) unsalted butter

3½ ounces (100 g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped

1⅓ cups (270 g) lightly packed light brown sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

½ teaspoon instant espresso powder


  • In Baker's Royale, Naomi Robinson puts the most magical and modern spin on dessert classics we all know and love. Her method is both sophisticated and approachable. As I turned page after page, I was mesmerized by the innovative flavor pairings and flawless techniques Naomi thoughtfully uses to hold our hand through the entire baking process. This is a book I will use time and time again.—Jocelyn Delk Adams, author of Grandbaby Cakes
  • Naomi Robinson is the queen of the drizzle, dollop, and swirl! Each one of her mind-blowingly gorgeous desserts is more beautiful than the last and it's impossible to pick a favorite. But what I love the most is that none of these recipes is overly complicated and they are guaranteed to make you look like a baking rock star!—Gaby Dalkin, of What's Gaby Cooking
  • Naomi elevates desserts, transforming the familiar to fantastic, with fun flavor combinations and can't-wait-to-bake recipes in Baker's Royale.
    Angie Dudley, Bakerella and author of Cake Pops
  • Only Baker's Royale could take classic, beloved desserts and turn them into mind-blowing creations with a twist. Naomi has the gift of creating delectable treats that will bring any dessert lover, no matter their age, to their knees.—Catherine McCord, founder of Weelicious
  • Naomi's blog has always been my go-to for the most indulgent, beautiful desserts. She creates one-of-a-kind masterpieces that I can actually make at home, and the photos of her treats are stunning! I am so excited to not only bake from the new Baker's Royale cookbook, but to proudly display it in my kitchen. Gorgeous!—Jessica Merchant, author of Simply Delish
  • Baker's Royale is full of photographs you will want to put on your wall and sweets you will want to put in your mouth. Naomi Robinson is a baking goddess. Her mouthwatering recipes are as timeless as they are essential to the modern baker.
    Andie Mitchell, New York Times bestselling author of It Was Me All Along and Eating in the Middle: A Mostly Wholesome Cookbook
  • "After whipping up a few recipes from Baker's Royale, much to the delight of my family, dessert is once again the highlight of the meal, not the afterthought....this is a lovely cookbook filled with approachable recipes with an elevated twist."
    -Marin Independent Journal

On Sale
Sep 5, 2017
Page Count
288 pages
Running Press

Naomi Robinson

About the Author

Naomi Robinson is a self-taught baker, and founder of Her site has been featured in BonAppé,,,, Better Homes and Gardens, Glamour, Sunset, and US Magazine. Naomi lives in Orange County, CA.

Learn more about this author