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What's Cookin Good Lookin?

It's time for Thanksgiving with The Black Girl Doctor - 2022 edition!

Food in the Black community is a love language of sorts, and whether you are cooking, buying, or simply enjoying, fellowship over food is often a way in which our culture shares in tradition! With this is mind, our team at The Black Girl Doctor wanted to share some of our favorite recipes and why they are special to us, in hopes that even if they don’t make it to your table in a few weeks, you'll add them to your list of dishes to try!

We are switching it up and working backwards because the BGD crew has a serious sweet tooth and we got desserts for days! Cake, cookies, and did someone say bread pudding!? Borrowing from Chef Carla Hall , our office manager Monique shares that this recipe gave her a bit of nostalgia!

“ I always was a lover of pound cake growing up as a child and when I saw this recipe with something that reminded me of a pound cake with buttermilk on top and” hot” it sold me to try it. It was a hit at our last family gathering. Delicious!!!!!” - Monique Burns

Hot Milk Cake with Buttermilk


  • 4 large eggs (room temperature)

  • 1 and ¾ cups granulated sugar

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (plus more for greasing)

  • 1 cup milk

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 2 cups all purpose flour (plus more for dusting)

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1 and ½ teaspoons Kosher salt

  • 1 cup buttermilk

Baking Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease a bundt pan with butter and lightly dust with flour, tapping out any excess flour. Line a baking sheet with a baking rack and set aside.

  2. In a standing mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat together eggs and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Set aside.

  3. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in milk and vanilla extract and cook until warmed, but not boiling, about 2 minutes.

  4. With the mixer on low, slowly pour the warmed milk mixture into eggs and sugar, mixing until thoroughly combined.

  5. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour, mixing until just combined. Remove the milk cake batter to the prepared bundt pan. Place in the center rack of the preheated oven and bake until an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Remove and allow to cool for 10 minutes.

  6. Make small holes all over the top of the cake, and with a toothpick and pour the buttermilk over the cake. Allow the cake to sit and absorb the buttermilk for 5-10 minutes. Invert cake onto the prepared baking sheet and carefully remove the bundt pan. Slice and serve!

Tip: For a tasty twist, serve this cake with a dollop of whipped cream and berries!


Next up, Dr. Akilah shares that these Betty Crocker cookies are a go to for folks who need something quick and easy that will satisfy the kiddos or a big party!

“The cookies are easy to make and delicious! Perfect for someone who loves sweets but may not love baking or cooking, or who wants to bake something good for lots of people to with children. Party favorites!” - Dr. Akilah

Peanut Butter Blossoms


  • ½ cup granulated sugar

  • ½ cup packed brown sugar

  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter

  • ½ cup butter, softened

  • 1 egg

  • 1 ½ cups Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour

  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda

  • ½ teaspoon baking powder

  • Additional granulated sugar

  • About 36 Hershey's Kisses

Baking Instructions:

  1. Heat oven to 375°F. In large bowl, beat 1/2 cup granulated sugar, the brown sugar, peanut butter, butter and egg with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon, until well blended. Stir in flour, baking soda and baking powder until dough forms.

  2. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in additional granulated sugar. On ungreased cookie sheets, place about 2 inches apart.

  3. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Immediately press 1 milk chocolate candy in center of each cookie. Remove from cookie sheets to cooling rack.


Rounding off our desserts, Dr. J shares a twist on a classic from Chef Jazzmine Woodard, that satisfies her and her family’s sweet tooth!

“All the women in my family have a massive sweet tooth, and I am no exception! I love this twist on a classic and anything with praline is where it’s at!” - Dr. J

Sweet Potato Praline Bread Pudding


  • 2 large sweet potatoes roasted and peeled

  • 2 loaves day-old French bread

  • 8 eggs

  • 2 cups granulated sugar

  • 15 ounces pumpkin puree

  • 2 cups heavy cream

  • 2 cups half and half

  • 6 tablespoons butter melted

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg

  • ½ teaspoon sea salt

Praline Sauce

  • 1 cup unsalted butter

  • 2 cups brown sugar

  • 1 ½ cup pecan halves or chopped pecans

  • 1 cup heavy cream

Baking Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Poke a few holes in sweet potatoes and place on bottom rack. Bake for about 45 minutes or until easily pieced with a dinner fork.

  2. While the potatoes roast, prep the bread pudding ingredients: tear or cut bread into one-inch pieces and place into a large bowl. Set aside.

  3. Remove sweet potatoes and reset oven to 350 degrees. Place sweet potatoes in freezer for a few minutes to make them easier to handle then peel off the skin (they should come away easily), then place in a bowl. Mash to your desired consistency using a wooden kitchen spoon.

  4. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs until uniform. Mix in sugar, pumpkin puree, heavy cream, half and half, melted butter, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sea salt then stir in the cooled sweet potatoes. This custard mixture will have some chunks of sweet potato, which is OK.

  5. Pour custard mixture into bowl of torn bread pieces and use a spoon or rubber spatula to mix and spread the mixture until all pieces of bread are evenly coated. Transfer to a non-stick oblong pan and smooth top of mixture with spoon or spatula until it is relatively flat and even. Place pan in oven to bake for about an hour and thirty minutes.

  6. While the bread pudding bakes, melt the butter for the praline sauce in a small saucepan over medium-low heat.

  7. Add brown sugar and cream and stir until mixture is uniform. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low and simmer for five to 10 minutes in order to allow sauce to thicken. Remove from heat and stir in pecans.

  8. When ready to serve, you can either spoon the sauce all over the bread pudding before cutting or ladle it on the individual portions. Both ways work fine but the first is easiest with a large crowd.


Now, that our sweet tooth is satiated, don’t even think about getting full because our mains and side dishes are just as mouthwatering! We’ve got cornbread, mac and cheese, fried chicken, honey baked ham, and a healthy dash of veggies to round us off!

Dr. Tai shares a holiday staple from Chef Jen at Carlsbad cravings, but beware yal you may start a riot with this one!

“Everyone LOVES this cornbread (old timers and youngsters alike). The first time I made it my family devoured as much as they could and then argued over the leftovers. I’m not the best baker but this was pretty simple to make, and had me feeling like the cornbread queen! Anytime there is a get together I get asked to bring this cornbread (but I usually only make it during the holidays or if I’m making chili)." -Dr. Tai

Sweet Cornbread


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, melted

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 4 eggs

  • 2 cups buttermilk

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2 cups cornmeal

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Baking Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9×13 pan.

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together melted butter and sugar until combined. Add eggs and mix just until combined. Add buttermilk and vanilla and stir until combined.

  3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together all of the Dry Ingredients. Pour dry ingredients into buttermilk mixture and fold together then stir just until flour is all moistened (the batter will still be lumpy).

  4. Pour batter into a hot greased skillet. Don’t skip this step if you want crispy edges! Pour oil in your skillet and put it in the oven while preheating. The batter will sizzle when you pour it in. Bake 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees F or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.


The meat is up next and Dr. Dom and Dr. Shelly do not disappoint! First up is a ham copycat from The Chunky Chef followed by Chef Tanya Holland’s famous fried chicken

“While I like turkey and gravy, there is nothing better than the sweet and salty taste of this ham. I also love eating leftover ham sandwiches on Hawaiian rolls.” - Dr. Dom

Copycat HoneyBaked Ham


  • 8 lb bone-in spiral sliced half ham

  • 2 Tbsp butter, melted

  • 3 Tbsp honey

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

  • 1/2 tsp seasoned salt

  • 1/2 tsp onion powder

  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger

  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves

  • 1/4 tsp paprika

  • pinch of allspice

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Trim ham if needed, then place in slow cooker. Combine melted butter and honey, then massage over ham, getting in between the slices a little. Cover and cook on LOW 4-5 hours.

  2. At the end of the cooking time, preheat broiler to HIGH, and line a roasting pan with heavy duty aluminum foil.

  3. Combine sugar, seasoned salt, onion powder, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, ground ginger, ground cloves, paprika and allspice in a small bowl. Pat half of the sugar mixture over the top of the ham.

  4. Broil for several minutes, until bubbly and caramelized, then remove from oven.

  5. To a small saucepan, add remaining sugar mixture. Add 3 Tbsp of either water or ham juices from bottom of the slow cooker. A combination of water/ham juice and bourbon is a nice alternative! Stir, and heat to a boil. Boil for about a minute, then remove from heat.

  6. Brush or pour glaze over the ham, then broil again for a minute or two (careful... don't let it burn!). Remove from oven and let ham rest for 5-10 minutes.

  7. Serve warm or cold and enjoy!


Did I hear someone say fried chicken? Dr. Shelly doesn't believe in a Thanksgiving that doesn't include more than one bird. And if you don't have your grandmamas recipe, she recommends following Tanya Holland's recipe.

“OMG who doesn’t love succulent chicken done right!!”- Dr. Shelly

Tanya’s Buttermilk Fried Chicken


  • Chicken

  • Buttermilk

  • Dried Tarragon

  • Onion Powder

  • Sweet Paprika

  • Kosher Salt

  • Parsley

  • Dried Thyme

  • Vegetable Oil

  • Cayenne Pepper

  • Ground Black Pepper

  • All-Purpose Flour

  • Garlic Powder

  • Dried Oregano

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Take 3 1/21b of chicken and cut it into 8 pieces

  2. Put your pieces in a baking dish where you can marinate them

  3. Pick 1 cup of parsley and rough chop

  4. Grab a bowl and add 1 Tbsp. dried tarragon, 1 Tbsp. onion powder, 1 Tbsp. sweet paprika, 2 Tbsp. kosher salt and 2 tsp. garlic powder

  5. Add 1 Tbsp. black pepper, 1 tsp. oregano and 1 tsp. thyme, plus 1 tsp. cayenne pepper

  6. Sprinkle the seasoning mix over your chicken, covering every inch, and rub it in

  7. =Add your parsley then pour on a cup of buttermilk

  8. Refrigerate and preheat your oven to 425° F

  9. Pour 3/4 inch vegetable oil into a deep pan and turn it on a medium-high heat

  10. Take a baking tray and pour on 2-3 cups all purpose flour. Add 1 Tbsp. kosher salt and l tsp. black pepper

  11. Remove the chicken from the fridge and dredge in the flour

  12. When your oil reaches 350" F, use tongs to drop in the chicken, being careful not to crowd the oil

  13. Fry until lightly brown and repeat for all chicken pieces

  14. Place chicken on a baking tray and bake in the oven until chicken reaches 165" F

  15. Pull it out and listen to that sizzle. Now, we eat!


Dr. Jill is bringing us her spin on mac and cheese, the kind that is accepted at the cookout!

“There is nothing like an amazing mac and cheese that you and everybody else will be talking about. Once you get a good mac and cheese you can never go back! It’s great for Sunday dinners, holidays, or just because. I remember trying a similar recipe years ago after watching a mutual friend make this. I like to experiment and wanted to figure out the recipe on my own. I tried this and have never gone back. You can also get creative with this recipe by using various types of cheeses based on your desired taste.”- Dr. Jill

Southern Mac & Cheese


  • ½ box of macaroni noodles

  • ½ box of Velveeta cheese

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 cup of mild cheddar cheese

  • 1 cup of mozzarella cheese

  • ½ tablespoon of salt

  • ¼ teaspoon of garlic powder

  • A dash of black pepper

  • 1 ½ tablespoon of butter

  • 1-2 cups of milk

  • 2 tablespoons of softened cream cheese

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Set out cream cheese to soften. Lightly grease a 9×13 casserole dish. Add macaroni noodles to a boiling pot of water over medium heat until noodles are soft. In a large skillet on low heat start with ½ cup of milk,, thinly sliced Velvetta cheese, cream cheese, shredded cheeses, a dash of salt, and a dash of garlic powder. Add more milk as needed to achieve and maintain a creamy consistency. Continuously and slowly stir the cheese mixture until melted into a sauce. Take your time here. The more love and time you give, the creamier and cheesier the sauce will be. This is the key ingredient!

  2. In a small cup or bowl whisk together eggs. In a large mixing bowl add noodles, cheese sauce, cream cheese, salt, pepper, eggs, and butter and stir until mixed well. Adding more milk is suggested to maintain the creamy consistency during and after baking and prevents. Add milk based on your desired consistency. Using the greased casserole dish add a layer of macaroni mixture to dish. Top with a thin layer of shredded cheese. Repeat layering steps until the casserole dish is full. For the final layer add a few thin slices of Velveeta cheese.

  3. Place the dish in the casserole oven and bake for 30 minutes until lightly browned on the top. Immediately remove from the oven to prevent dryness. Let the dish settle and serve as your new favorite side dish!


Okay if you are feeling like you need to take a lap or do some jumping jacks you aren’t alone! Dr. Monique has a recipe from Chef Julia that is a tad lighter to round off our mains and sides! This a perfect addition if you have vegetarians in the family!

“This has been a great addition to our holiday table and is a hit with my vegetarian cousins. It’s so easy to put together and can be served hot or cold.” - Dr. Monique

Healthy Holiday Side Dish


  • 3 cups Brussel Sprouts, ends trimmed, halved lengthwise

  • 4 cups uncooked Butternut Squash, 1-inch cubes

  • 2 cups Pecan Halves

  • 1 cup dried cranberries

  • Olive oil

  • Salt

  • 5 tablespoons olive oil

  • 6 tablespoons maple syrup

  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Toss Brussels sprouts in 2 tablespoons of olive oil and salt. Roast in a preheated oven at 400 F for about 20 minutes.

  2. Toss butternut squash in 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons maple syrup, and cinnamon. Roast in the preheated oven at 400 F for about 20 minutes.

  3. Lightly toast pecans on a lined baking sheet at 350 F for about 5 minutes.

  4. In a large bowl, combine roasted Brussels sprouts, roasted cinnamon butternut squash, cranberries, and lightly toasted pecans.

  5. Add additional maple syrup to taste and toss it!

Make it your own:

  • Add bits of bacon

  • Top the recipe on a bed of spinach and make it a hearty salad

  • Substitute toasted pumpkin seeds for some fall flare

  • Substitute two tablespoons of maple syrup with balsamic vinegar for a lighter, savory delight


Now that we are stuffed and it’s time for the taboo and football trash talk to begin, we have a few libations to enjoy if you are into that sort of thing! Dr. Connesia brought the henny to enjoy and Dr. Shelly is back with a martini sure to deliver! Cheers!

My partner and I discovered this cocktail while on our honeymoon and it has become a quick favorite of ours and anyone we introduce it to! - Dr. Connesia”

Hennessy Sidecar


  • 1.75 oz Hennessy

  • 0.5 oz Orange Triple-Sec or Cointreau

  • 0.5 oz Lemon Juice

  • 1 Orange

Mixing Instructions:

  1. Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker and fill with ice cubes

  2. Shake vigorously until well mixed and well chilled

  3. Strain into a glass and garnish with orange zest

“So french martinis are my absolute favorite go-to cocktail because it's sweet and sparkly and because I am a huge fan of pineapple juice. I may not be 007 but when I get this martini shaken you can’t tell me my name ain’t Bond, Shelly bond.” - Dr. Shelly

The Perfect Sparkling French Martini


  • 4 ounces premium vodka

  • 3 ounces fresh pineapple juice

  • 1 ounce Chambord liqueur

  • Prosecco or Champagne

  • small pinch of fine grain sea salt

  • ice

Mixing Instructions:

  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice until ⅓ - ½ full.

  2. Pour in the vodka, fresh pineapple juice, Chambord to the cocktail shaker, sprinkle in the salt and shake vigorously for about five seconds.

  3. Pour the french martini into a chilled martini glass and top with a splash of prosecco or champagne

  4. Serve with garnish.

There you have it, from our family to yours, we wish you a filling and wondrous Thanksgiving holiday 🦃


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