Category: Paleo Page 3 of 4

Celeriac: Give This Ugly Vegetable a Chance

Avocado. Eggplant. Sauerkraut.

Most of us can think of certain foods that we don’t like or refused to try at one point. As a recovering picky eater, I was often afraid to try new foods, especially foods that looked or sounded “weird” to me.

Sauerkraut, eggplant and avocado were all foods that I wouldn’t even try at one point in my life but have learned to like, and, in the case of avocados, LOVE.

We’re told not to judge something without getting to know it, but, let’s be honest, most of us do. One vegetable that I had seen multiple times and was curious but afraid to try because of how strange it looked was this…

celeriac

Celeriac (say, sa-LAIR-ee-ac) also known as celery root.

It’s a relative of parsnips, carrots and parsley, and its taste resembles celery but is slightly sweeter, nuttier and milder. It’s a great source of filling fiber and also contains quite a bit of vitamin K, which supports heart and bone health.

This root vegetable isn’t always easy to find here in the U.S. (I get mine at MOMs Organic Market or Whole Foods), but if you can find it, it’s worth trying! It can be served the same way as a potato (mashed, roasted, sliced into fries, steamed, and as a component in soups and stews), so it’s really versatile.

Check out the video below to learn how easy it is to get the skin off of this less than beautiful root veggie and for a few more tips about how to prepare it!

Then, try one of the celeriac-centered recipes below:

Smashed Celeriac by Jamie Oliver

Celeriac Mash by Paleo Leap. This is the recipe I made, but I added about 1 tablespoon of fresh thyme, used 4 cloves of garlic, and used veggie broth instead of chicken stock.

celeriac puree.jpg

Autumn Celeriac Puree by food52

Cauliflower Celeriac Soup by Cook Eat Paleo

Easy Celery Root Fries by The Spunky Coconut

Rosemary Roasted Celery Root & Carrots by Everyday Health

Roasted Root Vegetables with Tomatoes and Kale by Simply Recipes

roasted-root-vegetables-tomatoes-kale-vertical-a2-1200

Photo used with permission from SimplyRecipes

 

Which recipe do you want to try? Do you have another you’d like to share? Feel free to leave a comment below!

 

 

Melt-in-Your-Mouth, Pan-Seared Curried Scallops {Paleo}

My dad is allergic to seafood, so we never had it in the house or ate it much when I was growing up.

Since I was born and raised in Baltimore, a city known for its steamed crabs and crabcakes, the fact that I didn’t like or eat seafood of any kind was a little strange. 

It wasn’t until my freshman year of college that I tried fish for the first time.

Spending a semester abroad in Spain as a junior was what really opened me up to trying and (much to my surprise) LIKING so many different kinds of food, especially seafood. I’ve enjoyed it ever since!

IMG_0662

Enjoying one of many meals in Granada, Spain in 2004!

Wild caught salmon and sea scallops are my absolute favorites.

There’s something about a perfectly cooked, silky scallop melting in your mouth that is unlike any other food experience.

I’ve become a big fan of culinary translator and food-as-medicine guru, Rebecca Katz, lately and have been trying lots of her recipes. I admire and appreciate all of the work she’s been doing to “spread the YUM” and bring excitement, flavor and nourishment to the plate. 

When I saw that one of her recipes included my #1 flavor blend (curry powder) and my favorite seafood (scallops) and I saw how simple the ingredient list was, I knew we had to try it!

We had it for dinner a few weeks ago and l-o-v-e-d it 🙂

(Oh, and we enjoyed it SO much that I forgot to take a picture, so don’t mind the pic below of another sea scallop dish we’ve made! I’ll update the image the next time we make it.)

IMG_3305

Servings: 4

Ingredients
12 dry-packed sea scallops
Sea salt
1 teaspoon curry powder
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, ghee or coconut oil
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 teaspoon snipped fresh chives, or 1 minced scallion, for garnish

*Click here for the full recipe and directions from the cancer-fighting kitchen expert, Rebecca Katz!*

Pumpkin Cheesecake Squares {Paleo, Vegan}

As we’ve been gearing up for Thanksgiving and experimenting with different dishes, I’ve been trying some new desserts.

Inspired by the textures of Meghan Telpner’s Rawmazing Key Lime Pie, I thought I’d infuse the flavors of fall into a melt-in-your-mouth, coat-your-tongue, creamy, no-bake cheesecake.

And I wanted an excuse to use pumpkin.

Pumpkin

Because I love pumpkin.

All things pumpkin.

Especially when it’s mixed with sweet maple syrup, creamy cashews, and warming cinnamon and ginger.

It’s my new go-to for a Thanksgiving dessert.

Cheesecake StackPSquare Closeup

Pumpkin Cheesecake Squares.

I’m going to keep it short and sweet here today because this recipe is that good, but all you need to know is it’s easy to make, doesn’t require baking, and is so addictive you’ll want to eat multiple squares at a time.

The creaminess comes from the raw cashews (don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it), and the slight hint of tartness we’d usually get from cheese comes from a spoonful of lemon juice.

Happy Thanksgiving!

cheesecake banner

Ingredients

Base

  • 1 cup raw pecans
  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts
  • 1 cup Medjool dates, pitted (make sure they’re soft)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch fine grain sea salt

Filling

  • 2 cups raw cashews, soaked in water 2-4 hours then drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground clove
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Put all the crust ingredients into a food processor, and process until the ingredients stick together. Stop and scrape down the sides as needed. Press the crust mixture into the bottom of a square baking dish.
  2. Put all filling ingredients in your blender or food processor (high-speed blenders like a Vitamix or Blendtec work best) and blend until smooth and creamy. You may have to stop to scrape down the sides. I had to use the tamper for my Vitamix to get it to be smooth and creamy.
  3. Pour the filling evenly over the base and smooth with a spatula. Cover the dish and place it in the freezer to set for 4-6 hours.
  4. Let the dish sit at room temperature for 10-15 minutes and then cut into squares. I sprinkled a thin layer of cinnamon on top before serving.

The UnDiet Cookbook Review {Plus a Yummy Stuffed Sweet Potato Recipe!}

This is so much more than a cookbook.

It’s an inspiring, encouraging, confidence-boosting guide to life that happens to include over 130 awesomely delicious and nourishing recipes.

Whether you’re gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, paleo, or just trying to live a fuller, more vibrant and balanced life, you need The UnDiet Cookbook in your life!

undiet cover

I had the privilege of learning from the author – nutritionist and best-selling author, Meghan Telpner – as a student in her Academy of Culinary Nutrition training last fall. As founder of the Academy of Culinary Nutrition and author of the bestselling UnDiet: Eat You Way to Vibrant Health and The UnDiet Cookbook, Meghan has committed her life to creating a revolution in health and well-being.

She does it in a way that is non-judgmental, kind, fun and inviting.

Meghan knows that being approachable and FUN is the key to engaging people, especially when it comes to something as sacred as what we eat and how we live.

So often when people are on diets, they settle for subpar food and a life marked by deprivation. They focus on what they “can’t” eat instead of channeling all of that energy toward what will nourish, satisfy and fill them up physically and emotionally.

Meghan is out to change that:

“UnDiet is here to free us from the chains we attach to all of those old, harmful, self-defeating, unhelpful rules we think we need to follow. They only make us miserable […] UnDiet is breaking free from the rules we think we’re meant to follow, and doing what is the very best for our individual health.”

Yes! Yes! Yes!

I totally agree.

She inspires anyone reading to take a build-you-up, positive, encouraging approach to what to eat through killer recipes that not only taste good but make our body feel amazing.

And she has a way of building and promoting community. In fact, I partnered with a fellow Culinary Nutrition alum and friend, Katie Hussong, to host our first UnDiet Cookbook Club, where each attendee made a recipe from Meghan’s cookbook or blog. It was SO fun!

Community

As someone who doesn’t follow one prescribed diet, I’m drawn to Meghan’s “UnDiet” approach. I follow the same philosophy because I’ve found in my own life that there is not one way of eating that everyone in the entire world “should” follow.

We agree that the bulk of what we eat should be plant-based (AKA “plantiful”), but there is room for flexibility, depending on what makes your body feel best and thrive.

One of the things I love about this book is that the UnDiet recipes are free from dairy and gluten (just like every recipe on this blog!), which means all of you can enjoy them.

Though knowledgeable about every diet out there, Meghan prefers to UNdiet, calling herself a “Meghanatarian.” She encourages us to make our choices with “awareness and knowing, doing what feels right for you, your body, your values, your environment, your budget.”

UnDiet2014-132

It’s about pausing long enough to tap into our body’s own intuitive wisdom that tells us what makes us feel awesome and what brings us down.

Through her journey with Crohn’s Disease, Meghan has experienced the healing and restorative power of the UnDiet lifestyle first-hand and is inspired to share what she has learned with the world.

Her intention is that her readers will “get it” and understand for themselves. That way she doesn’t have to say eat this, don’t eat that. She does her best to provide the information with the what’s the why’s the how’s in place, and lets them decide what they’re ready to pick up and run with.

Isn’t that refreshing?

I’ve made over a dozen recipes from the cookbook and have loved every single one.

From Undiet Coffee, Chocolate Chocolate Pancakes, and Banana Berry Oatmazing Muffins to the Vegalicious Quiche, Sacred Scramble, Balsamic Roasted Vegetables, Gracious Glow Soup, Maple Balsamic Tempeh, Baked Apples, Crispy Rice Squares and Rawmazing Key Lime Pie, every recipe we’ve tried has been a hit!

Undiet collage

Meghan’s endearing quirkiness and sense of humor comes through in recipe titles like, “Sunday Night Quickie Chocolate Chip Cookies,” Let’s Stay Together Crackers,” and “Breakfast Patty Whacks”…a few recipes I’ve yet to try but am excited to tackle.

She doesn’t take herself too seriously and consistently communicates the message we shouldn’t either. In the very beginning of the book, she shares her creed, which includes advice like:

“Flirt with farmers.”

“Dance like a four year-old.”

“Make love in the kitchen.”

And, last but not least:

“Today is the day. Make it ridiculously awesometown.”

The UnDiet Cookbook will give you confidence that everyone (yes, even you!) can cook and that it is possible to eat well, be well and live a vibrant life without ever feeling deprived. This is the way we were meant to live.

It wouldn’t be fair to end this love note without sharing one of my favorite recipes from The UnDiet Cookbook.

I’ve made it several times already and like to change up the beans and greens. One time I used cannellini beans and spinach and another time I used black beans and kale. I love versatile recipes like this because they give me a chance to use what I have on hand.

And the ingredient list couldn’t get any simpler.

Introducing, “Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potato.”

Stuffed_Sweet_Potato_52137-MT

Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potato

Nut-free
Soy-Free (option)
Grain-free
Protein Powered (option)

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 45–60 minutes
Serves 4

4 organic sweet potatoes
2 Tbsp avocado oil, coconut oil or organic ghee
1/2 red onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 (14-oz) can organic beans of choice, drained and rinsed*
6 cups greens, trimmed and sliced into ribbons
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon Make-Your-Own Sambal (page 206 in The UnDiet Cookbook), red pepper flakes, or your favorite hot sauce
Sea salt

Optional Add-ons

  • Hemp seeds (protein bonus)
  • Toasted sunflower or pumpkin seeds
  • Fresh sprouts
  • Tempeh bits (prepared as with TLT Deluxe Sandwich, page 83 in The UnDiet Cookbook)
  • Tahini Dressing (page 194 in The UnDiet Cookbook)

* Make it Protein-Powered!

Swap the beans for 1 lb pastured, organic protein of choice such as ground beef, chicken, or turkey. Cook the meat just until browned and then use in place of the beans.

Make It Like So

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Scrub the sweet potatoes and prick them in a few places with a fork (this gives them room to breathe as they bake). Place them on a baking sheet and bake until soft all the way through, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
  3. While the sweet potatoes are baking, heat the olive oil in a medium pan and add the onion and garlic. Cook until soft. Add the beans and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Remove from the heat and stir in your greens (the heat will wilt them). Add your lemon juice, sambal, and sea salt to taste.
  5. Remove the sweet potatoes from the oven. To serve, slice each sweet potato through the middle and top with beans + greens mix and your optional add-ons.

Excerpted from The UnDiet Cookbook: 130 Gluten-Free Recipes for a Healthy and Awesome Life by Meghan Telpner. Copyright © 2015 Meghan Telpner. Photography Copyright © 2015 Maya Visnyei and Catherine Farquharson. Published by Appetite by Random House, a division of Random House of Canada Ltd., a Penguin Random House Company. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

The Ultimate Gluten-Free Bread Stuffing {Paleo}

Last weekend, my husband and I went out of town for a little fall getaway and spent a long weekend in the Adirondacks of Upstate New York.

With all of the (exciting!) things that have been going on in the way of travel, presentations, cooking demos, and workshops, I was in need of a break, and Bill and I were overdue for some time to reconnect and relax.

It was SO beautiful, and fall was in full swing. We captured this beautiful view of the town of Lake Placid, overlooking Mirror Lake.

ADK

This is my favorite time of the year for those reasons and because I absolutely love fall food.

Roasted root vegetables. Creamy squash soups. Savory stews. Hearty chilis. Heart and soul-warming cups of tea and bowls of oatmeal.

Hungry yet?

And with Thanksgiving coming up next month, things like turkey, stuffing, roasted Brussels sprouts and pumpkin everything will start to take center stage.

Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to teach a workshop and cooking demo about Going Gluten-Free without Going Crazy. (I’m working on a few other posts all about gluten, so stay tuned for those.)

But, in the meantime, we’re going to focus on one of the top-rated meals I served at the class that everyone loved…Paleo Bread Stuffing!

Stuffing Aerial

After the class, one of the attendees said:

That stuffing recipe is officially my new go-to. I’m confident I’ll blow away my 3 sisters-in-law this Thanksgiving, which isn’t easy to do.

If you’re ready to wow some of your family members this year, look no further than this recipe.

Most gluten-free bread is full of LOTS of other ingredients (they have to put something in if they take out the key ingredient in bread…gluten) and tends to have less fiber than its gluten-containing counterparts. Because of that, I’m not a huge fan of eating bread just because it’s gluten-free.

A “gluten-free” label on a package doesn’t deserve the health halo so many of us have given it. It’s 100% necessary for those with Celiac disease and people avoiding gluten for medical reasons, but “gluten-free” does not automatically mean “good for you.”

But this bread is different.

SM Bread Box SM Bread Closeup

It’s naturally gluten-free and only has 6 SIMPLE, REAL FOOD ingredients. The bread mix is from a company I met at the Natural Products Expo – Simple Mills – and all you need to make it is oil, apple cider vinegar and eggs!

  1. Almond Flour
  2. Arrowroot Powder
  3. Flax Meal
  4. Baking Soda
  5. Sea Salt
  6. Organic Coconut Sugar

That’s how the label of a packaged food should look. Let’s not compromise quality of ingredients just because we’re not making it ourselves! 🙂

Here’s the recipe! You are going to LOVE it.

Stuffing Banner Stuffing Closeup

The Ultimate Gluten-free Bread Stuffing (Paleo)

For a healthier spin on this year’s stuffing, try this recipe!

  • 1 box Simple Mills artisan bread mix (or 1 medium loaf gluten-free bread)
  • 1 tablespoon ghee (AKA clarified butter)
  • 1 cup celery (chopped)
  • 1 cup carrots (chopped)
  • 1 medium onion (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme (chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh sage (chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • 1 cup walnuts (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (chopped)
  • 3 large eggs (whisked)
  • 2 cups broth (chicken or bone both preferred)
  1. Bake the bread that morning or the day before according to the directions provided on the back of Simple Mills Artisan Bread mix bag.

  2. Preheat oven to 350°F.

  3. Cut the loaf bread into cubes; toast the cubes in the preheated oven about 10 minutes to draw out the moisture. Add walnuts and toast another 8 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

  4. While the bread cubes are toasting in the oven, heat a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat and sauté celery, carrots, and onion in ghee for 5-8 minutes or until the vegetables have developed some color and are tender.

  5. Raise oven temperature to 400F.

  6. Add toasted bread, herbs, walnuts and cranberries to pan and toss to combine. Remove pan from heat. Whisk eggs together and pour on top of bread mixture, tossing to coat evenly. Then, pour on the broth and toss to combine.

  7. Pour veggie/bread mix into a baking dish and bake for 30 minutes, covered. Remove lid/cover and bake uncovered for 10 more minutes to crisp up the top. Sometimes we give it a stir and then put it back in the oven for another 15 minutes or so, depending on how crunchy you like it!

  8. If you save it for a day or two, I find that adding 1/2 cup-1 cup of broth to the mix to remoisten it before heating it up in the oven helps and prevents it from drying out. Enjoy! 🙂

You can find Simple Mills products on Amazon, at Target, MOMs Organic Market, Wegmans, and Whole Foods.

The Top 10 Healthy Food Trends from Natural Products Expo East 2015

Last month I had the opportunity to attend the Natural Products Expo East in Baltimore for the second time.

The Expo gives companies who create natural, organic, and healthy living products an opportunity to showcase their stuff to a community of retailers, practitioners, business owners, press, and bloggers like me 🙂

IMG_1690IMG_1822

The best way I can describe the expo is like Halloween for healthy foodies. It’s like you get to meet all of the people behind all of your favorite products and then try their new stuff.

Pacing is important.

When you’re basically sampling all day from 9:30 until 6:00, you get full quickly, especially since many of these foods have decent amounts of fiber, healthy fats and protein.

Each year, new food trends pop up, and even though my #1 philosophy focuses on eating as much whole, real food as possible, trends are fun and can make mealtime and snack time a little more exciting.

Here are the top 10 trends I noticed in the natural food space and some products I tried along the way!

Transparency matters. Tell us what’s in your product and where it comes from.IMG_2373

As consumers are taking a closer look at labels and ingredient lists, there’s a growing demand for retailers to tell us CLEARLY what is in the packaged foods they’re making and to simplify their products to have fewer ingredients.

Here are some standouts that prioritize transparency. No secrets here!

The “free from” (dairy, gluten, nuts, grains, soy, etc.) movement is in full swing.

IMG_2374

Because of years of poor diet, chronic stress, too many antibiotics, and other environmental and lifestyle factors, many of us are walking around with compromised digestive health, not realizing how badly we feel until we start feeling better.

Since 70% of our immune system lies in and around our digestive system, it makes sense that an unhappy “gut” = less than awesome health.

While we’re in the recovery phase, (or if we have to be “free from” a particular food for life), it’s helpful to experiment with cutting out certain ingredients (for me it’s dairy and gluten) to feel better. These are some of my favorite “free from” brands. They’re all dairy-free and gluten-free and some are free from other allergens as well.

Gluten-free is the way to be (31% of the products at the expo were GF).

IMG_2368

I got to meet Elizabeth behind Purely Elizabeth granola! She's a fellow IIN grad and a rock star!

I also got to meet Elizabeth behind Purely Elizabeth granola! She’s a fellow IIN grad and a rock star!

Paleo is still going strong.

IMG_2383

As the free-from movement continues and we get back to our roots of eating real food, the paleo diet (no grains, legumes, dairy, sweeteners, processed foods) maintains its strong following.

Their philosophy is, “If man made it, don’t eat it.”

As someone who doesn’t eat gluten or dairy, I often buy products labeled “paleo” because I know they will not have gluten or dairy in them, which gives me some peace of mind!

Check out some of these paleo options:

Organic, grass-fed meats and dairy are the new standard.

IMG_2381

Cows are supposed to eat grass, not grains. When cows are fed grains, they often get sick and have to be pumped full of antibiotics, which then end up in our food. This is no bueno for the cows or for us.

That’s why we want to buy grass-fed beef whenever possible.

To take it to the next level, grass-FINISHED beef is the gold standard because it means that in the last stage of their life, the cows were still fed grass rather than being fed grains to quickly fatten them up.

A few brands of grass-fed jerky to check out:

  • Epic bars & jerky (Bill loves these and we find them at Wegmans, Whole Foods & MOMs)
  • The New Primal jerky (cows are grass-fed AND grass-finished). You can find these at REI.

Move over coconut water. Maple water is the new kid in town.

IMG_2372

With a lower sugar content and price point than many coconut waters, maple water is a new trend.

I first found out about them when we were in Lake Placid this summer volunteering at the Ironman triathlon. Drink Maple had a team competing there, and we ended up being at the same cafe as them the day after the race.

Maple water has a subtle maple flavor and naturally occurring electrolytes, so for people who can’t stand the taste of coconut but want an option aside from plain water, this is definitely worth trying!

…But coconut is still in LOTS of products and is being reinvented.

IMG_2380

Hemp is the new flax.

IMG_2379

Hemp is an excellent source of easily digestible, plant-based protein and is a great source of healthy fats and minerals.

CBD is also becoming a popular cannabis-based ingredient in edible and consumable products that one could purchase from a cbd distributor. CBD businesses have become extremely popular over the years as the demand for hemp/marijuana-based products is soaring in the market. With a wide range of potential benefits from pain relief to anxiety management to help with insomnia, it’s no wonder that sites like Gold Bee (you can view the products they have to offer on the company website here) are becoming more and more popular. This is also why great care and attention need to happen on all ends when it comes to these businesses, including when it comes to financials. There are banks that accept cbd business for those that are looking, they just need to do some research in their business based area to find the right ones.

Here are a few hemp-based brands to try:

Turmeric, the ultimate anti-inflammatory, is taking center stage.

IMG_2370

The key component of turmeric that makes it such an anti-inflammatory and protective powerhouse is curcumin. Research suggests that curcumin’s protective properties play a key role in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease and inflammation.

An inflamed body is a sick and angry body, so we want to do anything we can to cool inflammation, and curcumin that can be ingested via brands like CuraMed, is definitely one of the best ways to do this. But this is just one company to consider, so to find the best one for you, make sure to give these products a taste too…

This final trend excites me the most!

There’s a focus on taking a step back to traditionally nourishing, gut-friendly foods like bone broths and sauerkraut.

Since 70% of our immune system lies in and around our digestive tract, eating foods that make our digestive system happy make our whole body look and feel its best!

IMG_2375

And, that’s a wrap!

For a gluten-free, dairy-free foodie who is focused on prioritizing whole, real food made with integrity by people who care, those were some of my favorite finds at Expo East 🙂

Addictive Cinna Mocha Fudge Bites {Paleo, Vegan}

I’ve made this recipe four times in the past two weeks, so consider yourself warned 🙂

These little treats are incredibly addictive.

mocha bites 2

If you’re looking for a sweet treat chocolate fix, you have to make these!

You’ll feel like you’re biting into a rich, decadent piece of dark chocolate fudge, so it might only take one of these little guys to satisfy your craving. You can whip them up in less than 10 minutes, too. They are very easy to make!

In addition to being loaded with anti-inflammatory walnuts, antioxidant-packed cacao powder, and blood-sugar stabilizing cinnamon, the secret “mocha” ingredient is detoxifying Dandy Blend.

I dedicated a full post to Dandy Blend earlier this week, so check out that post here to learn more and order samples to try for yourself!

dandy blend

I was inspired to make this recipe after I had been experimenting with other chocolatey treat recipes (including these Chewy Cherry Chocolate Brownie Bites!).

I remembered seeing fudge and brownie recipes that included coffee, so I thought I’d give it a shot.

Adding a slight coffee taste (this is coming from someone who doesn’t like coffee!) to a chocolate recipe takes the flavor to a whole new level! I know you will love these as much as we do 🙂

mocha bites banner mocha bite

Yield: 16-18 bites

Ingredients

2 cups raw walnuts
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 cup Medjool dates, pitted (about 10-12)
1 heaping tablespoon Dandy Blend
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

  1. Add walnuts and salt to food processor and process until finely ground, about 30 seconds.
  2. Add dates, Dandy Blend, cacao powder, coconut oil, vanilla and cinnamon to food processor. Process until combined – about 60 seconds.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl. Using your hands, form into small round balls, rolling them in your palm. Sprinkle with additional cacao powder, if you’d like.

**Store in a glass container in the fridge (or freezer) for up to two weeks – if they last that long! They will start to melt at room temperature because of the coconut oil, so keep them cool 🙂

What are your favorite healthy sweet treats? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Coconut Chai Almond Butter Bites {Paleo, Vegan, Gluten-Free}

When I lived in Granada, Spain during my semester abroad in college, I spent a lot of time at places called teterias or “tea houses” as they’re known in English.

We sat on ornate cushions at low tables as we sipped aromatic herbal teas and took in the bold scents and colors as well as the relaxed vibe of the room.

teteria

Visits to teterias introduced me to the vibrant and complex flavors of masala chai tea, which is what inspired today’s recipe.

The word chai actually means tea, so whenever you hear someone refer to “chai tea,” they are likely talking about the mix of spices in it known as masala chai.

Depending on who you ask, masala recipes vary, but they almost always include cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, cloves, and black pepper. Some blends also use nutmeg and/or star anise, which has a licorice-like taste.

Not only does this spice blend make for a rich and flavorful tea, but it also works well in dessert recipes like this one.

bite2 coco bites

Almonds and almond butter serve as the base of this recipe.

I love using almonds in any form because they are loaded with some serious health benefits:

coconut chai bites

Yield: ~18 bites

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons shredded coconut, unsweetened
  • 8 Medjool dates, pits removed
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons hemp seeds
  • 1/4 cup almond butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper (yes, you read that right!)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Pulse almonds and 1/2 cup shredded coconut in a food processor until completely ground (no chunks of almonds!).
  2. Add the remaining ingredients, except for the 2 tablespoons of shredded coconut, and blend in the food processor until all ingredients are combined into a dough-like consistency.
  3. Lightly toast the remaining 2 tablespoons of shredded coconut until lightly browned.
  4. Roll dough into balls with the palms of your hands, and then roll them in the toasted shredded coconut.
  5. Store in the refrigerator in a glass container. They will firm up in the fridge because the coconut oil will cause them to “set” at that cooler temperature. If you want them to be a little softer, feel free to set them out on the counter for 10-15 minutes before eating. As you chew them slowly, they will feel like they are melting in your mouth because of the coconut oil melting 🙂

Enjoy for breakfast, a snack or dessert!

What are some of your favorite flavor combinations? Let me know and I’ll try to incorporate them into a future recipe!

No-Bake Orange Cranberry Breakfast Bites {Paleo, Vegan, Gluten-Free}

I was inspired to make these when I was making a batch of healthy donut holes for a presentation last week.

Mmm delicious!

Mmm delicious!

I had some dried cranberries left over from another recipe for a grain-free apple tart that I made recently, and I had one or two oranges in my fridge.

Oranges and cranberries go well together, especially with a hint of ginger, so I did a little experimenting and ended up with these little hunks of yumminess!

orange slices

bitten bite

These are a quick and easy option for a grab-and-go breakfast, pre or post workout snack, afternoon snack, or even dessert, just like last week’s Paleo Pecan Pie Poppers!

These could also be called “Energy Bites” because of the combination of healthy fats and protein from the nuts and almond butter, fiber from the dates, and blood-sugar stabilizing cinnamon. The orange zest is also energizing and adds a little something special.

They are SO GOOD! There’s just enough orange flavor from the zest, and it pairs nicely with the tartness from the cranberries and mild bite from the ginger.

These little treats are addictive. You’ve been warned 🙂

OJ bites

bites cluster

Yield: 16-18 Bites

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts
  • 1 cup Medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries (Try to use cranberries sweetened with apple juice instead of sugar)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest (Use a microplane or other fine grater to grate the skin of the orange…AKA the “zest”) OR 3 drops therapeutic grade Wild Orange essential oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup raw almond butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Optional: shredded, unsweetened coconut

Directions

  1. In the food processor fitted with the “s” blade, grind the almonds and walnuts until finely ground.
  2. Add the dates, cranberries, spices, orange zest and salt and grind until blended.
  3. Add the almond butter and vanilla extract and process again until completely mixed.
  4. Form into balls about 1 inch in diameter, and, if you like coconut, roll in shredded coconut.

Paleo Pecan Pie Poppers {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Today’s post is brought to you by the letter “P.” 🙂

This recipe is great as a fueling pre or post workout snack or as a quick energy boost when you hit a morning or afternoon slump.

The SECRET to all-day energy is eating foods that contain a combo of healthy fats + protein + fiber, and these pecan pie poppers have all three!

IMG_7977

They also make a yummy dessert.

Caramel-ly, chewy dates + smooth and subtly salty almond butter + crunchy pecan = deeeelicious!

These poppers are super simple to make and require no cooking or fancy equipment. Just a knife, a bowl, and a spoon.

I made these at my inflammation-busting, energy-boosting cooking class last week, and everyone raved about them! One of my friends liked them so much that we packed extras for her to take to work as snacks.

Keep these on hand for a sweet, crunchy, and energizing on the go snack or sweet treat!

poppers date Collage

Ingredients

  • 12 Medjool dates
  • ÂĽ cup almond butter
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon 100% pure maple syrup (optional – adds a touch more sweetness & moisture if your almond butter is on the dry side)
  • pinch fine grain sea salt
  • 12 pecans

Directions

  1. Slice down the middle of each date on one side and remove pit.
  2. Stir almond butter, cinnamon, vanilla extract, maple syrup and sea salt together in a bowl.
  3. Using a spoon or knife, stuff each date with approximately 1 teaspoon of almond butter.
  4. Stuff 1 pecan into almond butter mixture in each date as shown in the picture above.

Then…stuff the whole thing in your face 🙂 Enjoy!

Page 3 of 4

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén

%d bloggers like this: