Gluten-Free Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

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Perfect for a healthy breakfast on the run…

Who doesn’t love a healthy grab-n-go breakfast?
This is a super easy make ahead recipe that is perfect for those mornings when you are racing out the door but don’t want to skip a healthy breakfast. One or two of these muffins heated in the microwave and you’ve got a tummy-warming oatmeal breakfast without the mess! Feel free to customize these to your liking, sub out the chocolate chips for raisins or dried cranberries, add a dash of cinnamon or use pumpkin in place of the banana…the options are endless.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

Ingredients (for 24 muffins):

5 cups gluten-free rolled oats (I used Bob’s Red Mill)

1 tsp. salt

2/3 cup mini chocolate chips

2 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas

5 Tbsp. honey or maple syrup

2 1/3 cup water

5 Tbsp. coconut oil, melted

2 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375º F. Line 24 muffin cups with silicone liners.

In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, salt and mini chocolate chips. In a separate bowl whisk together mashed banana, sweetener, water, oil and vanilla. Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients, combine thoroughly. Divide evenly into muffin cups. These don’t rise so a heaping 1/4 cup of batter is enough to fill the muffin cup without running over.

Bake for 20 minutes, rotating pans 180º after 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks. Freeze in airtight container or plastic freezer bags.

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Dark Chocolate Macadamia Cookies

Who doesn't love a big pile of cookies?

Dark Chocolate Macadamia Cookies (makes 24 cookies)

1/2 cup coconut oil, melted

6 Tbsp. coconut nectar

2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 1/2 cups almond flour

1 cup shredded coconut

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 cup macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.  In a large bowl combine almond flour, coconut, sea salt and baking soda.  In a separate bowl whisk together coconut oil, coconut nectar and vanilla.  Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients until thoroughly combined, stir in chopped macadamia nuts and dark chocolate chips.  Drop by rounded tablespoons onto prepared cookie sheets about 2″ apart.  The dough may seem slightly crumbly, just press it together and flatten it once on the cookie sheet, they will hold together once baked.  Bake for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are slightly brown on top.  Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.  Although these cookies are excellent warm they really are best after they are completely cooled and in my opinion even better on day two!  Store in an air tight container.

This recipe is shared at:

Fight Back Friday, Allergy Friendly Lunchbox Love, Wellness Weekend, Make Ahead Monday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Fat Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Gluten-Free Wednesdays

Quick and Easy Squash Latkes

Squash Latkes

Traditionally, a latke is a potato pancake. Most people think of the potato pancake as a Jewish dish eaten during Hanukkah, but potato pancakes of some sort exist in potato-eating cultures around the world.

My first experience with a potato pancake was at a block party in Allen, Texas…all my neighbors got together one fall evening with a few coolers of beer, several bags of potatoes, a tub of Crisco and all our Coleman camping stoves lined up in the cul-de-sac…a few hours later (and a couple refills of the beer coolers!) I had my first potato pancake.  I couldn’t imagine how I had gotten into my early twenties living in the south and never had one of these little bites of heaven, crispy outside, fluffy & salty inside, doused in ketchup…oh my I was hooked!  Needless to say those potato pancakes were terribly unhealthy and were full of processed “white” food and hydrogenated oil…AND to this very day (about 15 years later) there is still massive Crisco oil stains on the driveways where we fried them!!!!!

Fast forward to the present day into my gluten-free, grain-free, unprocessed and refined sugar-free lifestyle…I still love to re-create the tastes and textures of the foods I loved back then.  For years I have been making a wonderful sweet potato latke but lately have been experimenting using less starchy vegetables with really great results.  My favorites are these summer squash and zucchini latkes followed closely by a jicama and carrot combination.  Once again, this recipe is easily adaptable with just about any vegetable, the key is to squeeze as much moisture out of the grated vegetables you are using so the latkes don’t get mushy.

I like them with a dollop of fresh sour cream…

Summer Squash and Zucchini Latkes (yields 8 latkes)

1 lb summer squash, grated

1 lb zucchini, grated

2 green onions, sliced

2 eggs, slightly beaten

1/4 cup coconut oil, avocado oil or lard (or your favorite high heat oil)

celtic sea salt

black pepper

1 tsp. crushed red pepper

sour cream or creme fraiche (optional for garnish)

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Grate squash and zucchini on a box grater or in a food processor and place in a medium bowl.  Sprinkle a generous amount of salt over the squash and mix together, let sit in the bowl for about 15 minutes.  Scoop the squash mixture into a clean kitchen towel and squeeze out all the excess moisture (this is the most important step of the process, so don’t skip it!).  Place the drained squash back into the bowl, add green onion, beaten eggs, salt and pepper to your taste and crushed red pepper, thoroughly combine.  Drop about 1/4 cup of the squash mixture into the hot oil and slightly press down with a spatula, fry until slightly browned and crispy on each side, usually about 5 minutes per side.  Remove from oil and drain on paper towels.  Serve warm or at room temperature with a dollop of fresh sour cream.

Super crispy on the outside, moist but not mushy on the inside.

Recipe tips/variations:

  • Squeeze as much moisture out as you can!
  • If the mixture still feels too wet add tablespoon of almond, coconut or quinoa flour
  • For vegan option, omit the eggs and add 1/4 cup flour

Vegetables I like to use:

Jicama and carrot

Butternut squash

Sweet potato and red onion

This recipe is shared at:

Fight Back Fridays & Fresh Bites Friday

Fat Tuesday & Slightly Indulgent Tuesday

Gluten Free Wednesdays

Chocolate Macadamia Nut Butter Cups

I grew up eating Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups…I loved them, especially when they came out with the Reese’s Miniatures…those babies were so fun (and easy!) to eat.  I still crave peanut butter and chocolate…probably more often than I should but now I have found a lovely little alternative that satisfies my craving and nourishes my body all at the same time.  In this recipe I used almond butter and macadamia nuts but you could easily substitute any nut butter or nut that you like in their place.  Enjoy!

Chocolate Macadamia Nut Butter Cups

 Chocolate Macadamia Nut Butter Cups

24 whole raw macadamia nuts

6 Tbsp shredded coconut

6 Tbsp raw cacao powder

6 Tbsp coconut oil, melted

6 oz coconut butter or manna, softened

Pinch of Celtic sea salt

1/2 tsp vanilla or almond extract

1/4 – 1/2 tsp liquid stevia (optional)

2 Tbsp almond butter

24 mini cupcake liners

Line a mini muffin pan with the 24 cupcake liners.  In a medium bowl combine coconut, coconut oil, cacao powder, coconut butter, salt, vanilla and stevia (if using).  Stir ingredients until thoroughly combined.  Spoon the mixture into the paper liners evenly.  Using a small spoon place a 1/4 tsp dollop of almond butter on top of each candy, place the macadamia nut on top of the almond butter and press the nut lightly down into the cup.  Put the muffin pan into the refrigerator to chill the candies, about 30 minutes.  Keep refrigerated in an airtight container until ready to serve.

Taste just like a Reese's to me...

This recipe is shared at:

Slightly Indulgent Tuesday & Tasty Tuesday

Gluten-Free Wednesdays & Wellness Weekend

Almond Joy Freezer Pie

Almond Joy Freezer Pie (shown using mini cheesecake pan)

This Almond Joy Freezer Pie has been my go to dessert this summer!  It’s cool, refreshing and decadent…not to mention SO easy to make!  I have literally had some form of this dessert in my freezer all summer long…I’ve made it in a pie plate, mini-cheesecake pans, a springform pan and a 9×9 brownie pan…they are all great but the individual tarts are my favorite.  It is so nice to always have a pretty dessert on hand for when you have company drop by or for that late night chocolate craving too!   This dessert is fruit sweetened, that’s right…no extra sweetener has been added to the recipe other than fruit…that makes this a superstar dessert in my book!  I chose to make this an Almond Joy Pie, you could easily turn it into a scrumptious Peanut Butter Cup Pie by substituting chopped peanuts for the almonds in the topping and adding 1/4 cup peanut butter and omitting the almond extract in the filling


For the crust:

3/4 cup almond flour

3/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut, lightly toasted

1/4 tsp. celtic sea salt

1/4 cup coconut oil, melted over low heat

1 Tbsp. coconut palm sugar (optional for a slightly sweeter crust)

2 tsp. organic vanilla

In a large bowl combine almond flour, toasted coconut and salt.  Whisk together coconut oil, palm sugar (if using) and vanilla.  Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and thoroughly combine.  Press mixture into desired dessert dish (9″ pie plate, mini cheesecake pans, springform pan or square 9×9 dish).  Bake at 350 F for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool completely on a wire rack.

For the filling:

5 small ripe bananas, peeled and broken into small pieces (about 14-16 ounces peeled)

1 cup organic coconut milk, canned

1/4 cup unsweetened cacao powder (or your favorite unsweetened cocoa powder)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp almond extract

Combine all ingredients in blender or food processor and blend until very smooth, about 3 minutes on high-speed.  Check to make sure all the banana is pureed before filling the crust.  Pour filling into your cooled crust and sprinkle toppings (listed below) across the top of the filling.  Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and freeze for at least 4 hours, or overnight.

For the topping:

1/2 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted

1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes

1-2 oz. finely chopped or shaved dark chocolate (I use 70% or higher)

Set the dessert at room temperature about 20 minutes before serving, cut with a sharp knife, ENJOY!

This recipe is shared at:

Slightly Indulgent Tuesday , Tasty Tuesday & Traditional Tuesdays

Gluten-Free WednesdaysThis Chick Cooks & Foodie Wednesday

Pennywise Platter Thursday, Fresh Bites Friday

Wellness Weekend & Fight Back Friday


The Best Chocolate Sauce…Ever!

Chocolate Sauce over Coconut Ice Cream

Creamy, decadent, refined sugar-free, vegan (or can be anyways), pourable straight from the refrigerator and OH SO YUMMY!  Did I mention it is really easy to make too?

We enjoy this sauce drizzled over all kinds of desserts, ice cream, fruit and sometimes even pancakes or waffles!

Refrigerator Chocolate Sauce

1 cup pure maple syrup

1/2 cup almond oil

1/2 cup unsweetened cacao powder

1/4 tsp. celtic sea salt

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

1/2 tsp. pure almond extract

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until smooth.  Store in the refrigerator for up to three months (if it lasts that long…ours never does!).

Sometimes I replace half of the maple syrup with agave, coconut nectar or honey (of course, honey would not be vegan), it makes the sauce a bit sweeter than using all maple syrup.  I use raw cacao powder as well but any unsweetened cocoa powder works fine…

Chocolate sauce drizzled straight from the fridge

This recipe is shared at:

Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays & Tasty Tuesdays

Gluten Free Wednesdays

Wellness Weekend @ Diet, Dessert and Dogs

Almond Butter Coconut Bites

These Almond Butter Coconut Bites are the perfect little “primal” treat.  They will satisfy any sweet tooth with just one (ok, maybe two) bites!  Again, these are easy to customize to your own taste…substitute your favorite nut or seed butter for the almond butter and any sweetener for the coconut nectar…and go crazy on the toppings too!

Almond Butter Coconut Bites:

Almond Butter Coconut Bites

1/4 cup coconut oil (softened)

1/3 cup almond butter

2 tsp. coconut nectar

3 Tbsp. shredded coconut

1/2 oz. dark chocolate, grated

sea salt

Mix coconut oil, almond butter, 2 Tbsp. coconut and coconut nectar together in a bowl.  Spread onto a small parchment lined pan (see note below), sprinkle with a dash of sea salt, the grated dark chocolate and 1 Tbsp. of shredded coconut. Freeze for one hour and then cut into 12 small squares.  Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the freezer.

**I live in Colorado and do not have air conditioner in my home so my mixture was very runny and there was NO way I could spread and shape this mixture on any kind of pan with out sides so I opted to use a nut butter cup candy mold…worked like a charm!  A small casserole dish would probably work nicely as well…

This Recipe is shared at:

Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays & Tasty Tuesdays

Almond Coconut Delight Cookies

Today I was in the mood for something sweet, chewy and warm…only a cookie was going to satisfy my craving. I didn’t want anything too rich or chocolately but more along the oatmeal raisin type of cookie…I don’t eat oats anymore so that chewy texture is sometimes a challenge to achieve in a cookie but this recipe does the trick perfectly!

These cookies are so easy to make and you can adapt them to your liking very easily.  I used coconut oil and coconut nectar but you could use any oil (or even butter) for the fat and agave, honey or yacon syrup could be used for the sweetener.  Walnuts and raisins are always my choice for nuts and dried fruit but again you can substitute your favorites without any problems…

Almond Coconut Delight Cookies

Coconut Delight Cookies

Makes about 16 cookies

Ingredients:

1/4 cup coconut oil (or oil of your choice)

1/4 cup coconut nectar (or agave, honey, palm sugar or yacon)

1 tsp. vanilla

1 1/4 cup almond flour

1/4 tsp. sea salt

1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/2 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts)

1/2 cup shredded coconut, unsweetened

1/4 cup dried fruit (raisins or cranberries) or dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 F.  In a large bowl combine oil, sweetener and vanilla, set aside.  In a medium bowl combine almond flour, salt, baking soda, nuts, coconut and dried fruit or chocolate chips.  Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix throughly.  Drop by rounded tablespoon onto a parchment lined cookie sheet and slightly flatten.  Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown around the edges.  Cool on a wire rack and serve.

Try to eat just one...

This recipe is shared at:

Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays & Tasty Tuesday

Gluten-Free Wednesdays

Meatless Monday…Eggplant Parmesan.

I eat a pretty strict “Primal Blueprint” diet…no grains, legumes, refined sugar, LOTS of animal protein, healthy fats, nuts, seeds and vegetables with a limited dairy intake…BUT I do enjoy a Meatless Monday on occasion.  Some days just call for lighter fare.  One of the most satisfying and enjoyable vegetarian meals for me is my adapted version of the Eggplant Parmesan recipe from Elana Amsterdam’s Gluten Free Almond Flour Cookbook.  I had a wonderfully enjoyable lunch today with my Dad, this recipe is one of his favorites too!

My Meatless Monday Lunch...YUM!

So, here you go…Enjoy!

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 pounds eggplant
  • 1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil (or other high heat cooking oil)
  • 3 cups tomato sauce
  • 1-2 cups freshly grated mozzarella cheese (depending on how cheesy you like it!)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preparation:
Preheat the oven to 350°F.Cut the eggplant into 1/4-inch slices. In a medium bowl, combine the almond flour and salt. Dip the eggplant slices in the buttermilk, then coat with the almond flour mixture.

Heat the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté the eggplant for 3 to 5 minutes per side, until golden brown. Transfer the eggplant to a paper towel–lined plate.

Pour 1 cup of the Tomato Sauce into a 13 by 9-inch baking dish. Layer the eggplant over the sauce; cover the eggplant with 1 cup of the sauce and 1 cup of the mozzarella. Place the remaining eggplant over the top, then cover with the remaining sauce and mozzarella.

Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the edges are bubbling. Remove from the oven and top with grated Parmesan cheese before serving.

Gluten Free Eggplant Parmesan

 

This recipe is shared at:

Slightly Indulgent Tuesday

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