11 Jun 2019

Coconut Tahini and Matcha Bites

This recipe adds a little twist to your typical energy balls.  It has both coconut butter and tahini, two types of seeds, matcha and protein powder to boot.   If you’re not familiar with matcha powder, it is green tea leaves ground into a concentrated powder, making it packed with antioxidants.  Add that along with the protein, healthy fats (saturated as well as omega 3’s) and fiber, and you’ve got yourself some banging little bites full of health benefits!

 

Ingredients (makes 24 balls)

  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 2 tablespoons flax seeds
  • 2 tablespoons hemp seeds
  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 1/2 cup coconut butter
  • 2 tablespoons protein powder
  • 4-5 dates, pitt removed
  • 3 tablespoons cacao nibs
  • 1-2 teaspoons matcha powder (preferably ceremonial and organic)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2-3 tablespoons of coconut milk (for adjusting thickness)

 

Directions

  1. In a food processor, add dates, coconut butter, tahini and shredded coconut.  Blend or pulse until well combined.  Add remaining ingredients except coconut milk.  Continue to blend until mixture forms a thick paste and can be formed into balls.
  2. If mixture is too thick, add small amounts of coconut milk during the blending.  If mixture is too thin, add more almond flour or protein powder.
  3. Scoop out portion sizes (I use a small scooper) and arrange on parchment-lined baking sheet.
  4. Place in the freezer or refrigerator to firm up.  Once firm, they can be transferred into a storage container.
  5. For best results, store in freezer or refrigerator.  If storing in freezer, allow to thaw about 5 minutes before enjoying.
16 May 2019

Chocolate Power Balls

Power balls are a tasty mouthful when you’re craving something sweet but are trying to stay clear of sugary treats.  With the combination of protein powder, nuts and coconut, they can serve as a healthy little snack.  But be forewarned, it is very easy to overindulge in these little guys!

There are so many different variations of power balls which makes it a perfect opportunity to mix and match according to what you have in your pantry.  I will usually start with the same foundational ingredients and then start adding whatever I have on hand and they always turn out yummy.  With that being said, I had to somehow put something down in writing in order to post this recipe but there is no need to be locked into these ingredients.  The key is getting the right consistency to be able to roll the mixture into balls.  This is easy to do at any stage of the process by simply adding more dry ingredients or a little extra liquid. 

Note:  This does make a big batch, so I will usually keep half in the refrigerate and the other half in the freezer for later.  

 

Ingredients (makes about 24 large balls)

  • 10-12 dates, softened and pitted
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1½ cups any combination of nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews)
  • 1/2 cup almond butter or other nut butter (no sugar or oil added)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup date water or other liquid of choice (may need more if mixture is too dry)
  • 1/2 cup collagen powder and/or quality protein powder (could substitute with flaxseed meal)
  • 1/4 cup hemp seeds/chia seeds
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 1/4-1/2 cup cacao nibs
  • small amount of coconut oil for rolling

 

Directions

  1. To soften dates, place in a microwave safe bowl and cover with water.  Microwave for 2 minutes and allow to cool slightly.  Remove the pits and reserve the water for later use.
  2. Add nuts, dates, coconut flakes and 1/4 cup date water to a food processor.  Process on high until mixture is finely chopped and begins to form a paste.  You can continue to mix in the processor or transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.
  3. Add almond butter, vanilla, coconut oil and salt.  Mix well.
  4. Add protein powder, hemp seeds, and cacao powder.  Mix until well combined.
  5. The mixture should be somewhat sticky but also thick enough to roll into balls.  If too crumbly, add a small amount of liquid (water, almond milk).  If not thick enough or too sticky, add a small amount of collagen powder, hemp seeds.
  6. Mix in the cacao nibs
  7. Cover bowl and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour or until mixture can more easily be formed into balls.
  8. To roll into balls, have some coconut oil or coconut spray handy.  Spread a small amount on your hands and in a small scooper or spoon (this is the messy part).
  9. Fill the scooper with desired amount and roll between palms of hand.  Place on a parchment-lined sheet pan.
  10. Continue this process until all the balls are made.  Put the sheet pan in freezer for 10 minutes so the balls are easier to handle.
  11. Place protein balls in a container and refrigerate (I usually put half in the freezer for later).
10 May 2019

Pickled Red Onions

I love having a jar or two of pickled red onions in my refrigerator.  A lovely pink condiment that will add extra crunch and tanginess to any salad, burger or taco!  Be creative and change up the spices to suit your fancy.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup ACV
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp peppercorns
  • ½-1 tbsp xylitol or other sugar substitute (swerve, erythritol)
  • 1 tsp oregano

 

Directions:

  1. Peel and thinly slice the onion.  I prefer half moon slices but you could also slice into full rings.
  2. Add onion, garlic, peppercorns and oregano to a mixing bowl.
  3. In a small saucepan, bring vinegars, salt and sweetener to a light boil over medium heat.
  4. Pour hot liquid over the onions and stir.
  5. Allow to sit on the counter for about 1 hour.  Gently stir several times throughout the hour.
  6. Transfer onions to a glass jar (I used to smaller jars).
  7. Store in the refrigerator.  They will keep nicely for several weeks.

 

 

24 Apr 2019

Easy Gluten-Free Carrot Cake Cookies

As you may have noticed, these carrot cake cookies are gluten-free but not grain-free.  Normally all my recipes are both but I decided to add some gluten-free oatmeal for a little extra texture.  Therefore, they are technically not grain-free but could easily be converted by omitting the oats and adding additional almond  flour.  I honestly didn’t even use exact measurements.  That’s how easy these are! Look for a nice cookie dough consistency that’s not too stiff.  Do a trial run with just a few cookies to get the cookie texture you’re looking for.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 3 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free oatmeal
  • 3 Tbsp arrowroot flour
  • 1-2 scoops collagen/vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 t Himalayan pink salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup Swerve (or other approved sugar)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 3/4 cup grated carrots
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup Lily chocolate chips (these are sugar-free, sweetened with stevia)

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a medium sized mixing bowl, add all the dry ingredients and whisk together.
  3. Add eggs, oil, vanilla, sugar and maple syrup.  Mix with a large spoon until well blended.
  4. Add carrots, walnuts and chocolate chips.  Fold into batter until evenly incorporated.
  5. Line a baking sheet with a silicone pad or parchment paper.  Scoop batter onto baking sheet.  Do not flatten.
  6. Bake for about 12 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Allow to sit on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes and transfer to a cooling rack.
13 Apr 2019

Grain-Free Rosemary Bread

Have you been rockin’ a grain-free, low carb lifestyle but find yourself craving the feel of some bread in your mouth?  Well this bread will satisfy that craving and keep you on track with your healthy eating plan!  It’s extremely easy to make and you will not be disappointed.  You can serve this with some seasoned EVOO for dipping, add it to a beautiful cheese board, or just slather a slice with grass-fed butter or nut butter.  Is your mouth watering right now?  Mine is!

I’ve made this bread several times and have been so happy with the results.  I served it warm out of the oven along side a bowl of delicious soup…yum!   Enjoy!!

 

Ingredients:                                                                                      

  • 1/2 c coconut flour
  • 2 Tbsp pysillium husk
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 Tbsp rosemary
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp pink salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 Tbsp EVOO
  • 1 Tbsp ACV
  • 1/2 cup boiling water

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet.
  3. Add coconut flour, pysillium husk, baking powder and spices to a mixing bowl and whisk together.
  4. Add the eggs and oil to the dry ingredients.  Beat with a hand mixer just until blended (no longer than 1 minute is needed).
  5. Add the ACV and mix briefly with a spoon. It will look lumpy (1st picture).
  6. Add the boiling water slowly, a little at a time (you may not need the entire ½ cup).  Continue to stir until water is incorporated completely.  Dough will be wet and sticky but smooth (2nd picture).
  7. Place dough onto the parchment paper and form a round shape with your hands.
  8. Score the top with a knife.  Sprinkle with a little rosemary for textural appeal.
  9. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown and the center is firm to the touch.
01 Apr 2019

Beef Liver with Apples and Onions

 

 

Forgive me for loving liver so much!  I know not everyone is a fan but my hope is that I will convert one person at a time.  For this recipe, the apples add that touch of sweetness that some may need to break through that “I don’t like liver” mentality.  And well, onions and liver just go hand in hand together.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 large Braeburn apples, cubed
  • 1 lb. grass-fed beef livers (I get mine at the local farmer’s market), cut into 2×3″ pieces
  • 1-2 Tbsp ghee
  • 1-2 tsp ground thyme
  • 1 Tbsp Balsamic grand reserve vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste

 

Directions:

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of ghee in saucepan.  Add onions and cook on low-medium heat.  Season with salt and pepper according to taste.  Stir frequently and cook for 5-6 minutes or until onions begin to turn a golden brown.
  2. Add apples and cook just until tender.
  3. Transfer onion and apple mixture to a dish.  Keep warm.
  4. Add remaining ghee to the same saucepan and heat over medium heat.  Add the beef liver and cook for approximately 3 minutes or until you see them browning around the edges.  Turn liver pieces over and cook another 2 minutes.  Be careful not to overcook or they will become tough and rubbery.
  5. Place liver on a plate and top with onions and apples.  Yum!!

 

 

19 Mar 2019

Cabbage and Apple Slaw

Here’s a quick and easy side dish that can be put together in no time.  This cabbage slaw recipe is not your “typical” cole slaw.  It has that touch of sweetness from the apples which adds extra crunch and freshness!  My husband, who is  not a big cole slaw fan, loved this.  Also, as a little side note, the vibrant colors are so pretty and will make any plate come to life!

 

Ingredients:

  • 9 oz bag shredded cabbage (some mixes have carrots added to them but I like to add extra)
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 large or 2 small apples (your choice – I used Granny Smith and Pink Lady)
  • 1/3 cup red onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup approved mayo
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp ACV
  • 1 Tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbsp raw honey
  • juice and zest of 1 lime
  • 1/4 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground pepper
  • 1 Tbsp poppy seeds (optional)

 

Directions:

  1. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together mayo, EVOO, ACV, mustard, honey, all the zest and juice of ½ lime, salt and pepper.  Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, add the bag of cabbage.  Use a kitchen scissors to chop through and cut any pieces that are too big.
  3. Add carrots and onions.  Mix to combine.
  4. Add diced apples to a separate bowl and squeeze the juice of the other half of the lime over the top.  Toss to coat apples.  This will keep them from turning brown.  Add the apples to the cabbage and toss everything together.
  5. Pour the slaw dressing over the top and gently mix until evenly distributed.
  6. Add poppy seeds, if desired.
  7. Chill for 1 hour.
11 Mar 2019

Shrimp Egg Roll in a Bowl

Today is Ash Wednesday so when I was deciding what to make for dinner the night before, I had pulled out a bag of frozen shrimp that I had stocked up on.  I was originally thinking a shrimp jambalaya but was a little short on time.  I also had a bag of broccoli slaw that needed to be used so I shifted gears and decided to put this shrimp egg roll in a bowl together.  I was not disappointed!

This recipe comes together very quickly which is great because you can have a meal ready to eat in a about 30 minutes.  It also means that you need to have all your ingredients lined up and ready to go.  This of course is something that you should make a practice of doing for all your meals.  It makes cooking so much easier and more efficient! 

 

Ingredients:

  • 16 oz bag of frozen shrimp, thawed and well drained (I used tail off)
  • 2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 medium sized onion, chopped (heaping ½ cup)
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced (jarred garlic or 1 tsp garlic powder)
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 14 oz bag of pre-packaged broccoli slaw or cole slaw mix
  • 3-4 Tbsp coconut aminos (or gluten-free soy sauce)
  • 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1/2-1 Tbsp sriracha
  • 2 Tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp arrowroot flour, for thickening (frozen shrimp can make it watery)
  • 2 Tbsp sesame seeds

 

Directions:

  1. In a bowl or large mixing cup, whisk together coconut aminos, vinegar, tahini, sriracha, ginger and arrowroot flour.  Set aside.
  2. In a large skillet, add sesame oil and heat on medium-high until hot.  Add onions and garlic.  Sauté for 2 minutes.
  3. Add frozen peas and shrimp.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cook for about 3-4 minutes.  It’s important not to overcook or the shrimp will get rubbery.
  4. Add cole slaw mix and sauce ingredients (if there looks to be too much sauce for your dish, add less).
  5. Stir to combine ingredients.  Sauté until Cole slaw is tender.
  6. Dish up and top with sesame seeds before serving.

04 Mar 2019

Grain-Free “Monster” Cookies

I’m sure most of you have heard of monster cookies…chocolate chips, M&M’s, peanut butter chips and oats.  This recipe is my healthier version of monster cookies that are grain-free and loaded with dark chocolate chips, walnuts, shredded coconut and cranberries  for a little extra sweetness.  What I love about these cookies is that they are crispy around the edges and soft and chewy in the middle.  So yummy!!  I dare you to eat  just one!

 

Ingredients:

  • 1½ cup fine almond flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 3 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp Himalayan salt
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 cup organic coconut sugar (can also use a sugar substitute such as Swerve or Natvia)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup (I used organic, grade A)
  • 2 eggs, pasture-raised, if possible (organic is next best option)
  • 8 Tbsp grass-fed butter, softened (1 stick)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup Lily’s chocolate chips (no sugar added)
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut 
  • 1/4 cup cranberries  

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a mixing bowl, add almond and coconut flours, salt and baking soda.  Use a whisk to combine and break up any clumps.  Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, add softened butter, maple syrup and coconut sugar.  Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, cream together on medium speed for about 2-3 minutes.  Add the eggs and vanilla and beat an additional 2 minutes.
  4. Slowly add in half of the dry ingredients and mix on low speed.  Add remaining dry ingredients and mix just until combined.  If desired, mix by hand if dough gets too thick.
  5. Fold in chocolate chips, walnuts, coconut chips and cranberries.
  6. For best results, refrigerate dough for 2-4 hours before baking.  Dough should be somewhat stiff.
  7. Scoop desired size onto baking sheet.  Don’t press down or overcrowd.
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes.  All ovens are different so check the cookies near the end of baking time.  When browned around edges, remove from oven.  They will be somewhat soft in the middle but will continue to cook on the baking sheet.  If dough appears raw, bake for an additional 2 minutes.
  9. Allow cookies to rest for about 5 minutes and then move them to a cooling rack.

 

Note:  You may want to bake 2-3 cookies in the first batch to test the time.  This will ensure that you get the best desired texture and don’t over-bake or under-bake the cookies.

26 Feb 2019

Beet Hummus

Are you having friends or family over or perhaps going to a party and you need to bring an appetizer?  If you’re looking for something a little different and of course something you can feel good about eating, this beet hummus might just be the perfect choice.  

You can make this hummus in about 15 minutes!  Cut up some veggies ahead of time or buy pre-cut if you’re really short on time.  Pull out a platter, arrange some colorful veggies and maybe some quality cheese and crackers on it.  Place a bowl of this vibrant beet hummus in the middle and you have a kaleidoscope of colors that will take center stage on any table!

 

Ingredients:

  • 13 oz can chickpeas, drained (I actually found some in a carton…no BPA concerns)
  • 1 cup cooked beets (I find them in the freezer section at Trader Joe’s)
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 3 Tbsp tahini
  • 3 Tbsp EVOO
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • zest of 1 lemon (about 2 tsp)
  • 2+ Tbsp water (for thinning)
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp coriander
  • ½-¾ tsp pink Himalayan salt
  • ½ tsp ground pepper

 

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients to a food processor.  If you’re using frozen beets, make sure they are thawed out.
  2. Blend on high for 1 minute.  If too thick, add an additional amount of water (1 Tbsp at a time)
  3. Continue to blend until you achieve a smooth and creamy consistency.
  4. Taste and adjust seasonings or add more lemon juice to your likings.
  5. Best if chilled before serving.
  6. Store in the refrigerator for up to one week.
  7. Enjoy with some fresh veggies, healthy crackers, or on top of your favorite salad.