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Filtering by Category: Recipes

Maple Almond Butter Muffins, Gluten-Free and Gain-Free

Sharon Muse

The inspiration for our blog can strike us anywhere, we are constantly keeping our eyes open for new ideas and love taking an existing good recipe and making it even better. These Maple Almond Butter muffins were inspired by the recipe found on top of a Siggi’s Greek yogurt container. We liked how their recipe was written but wanted to see if we could make these gluten-free and grain-free and still taste good. It did take several attempts, but we finally got it right – and these are delicious!!

We replaced the wheat flour with a combination of almond flour and coconut flour. Not only are these flours both gluten-free and grain-free, they boast a lot of nutrients as well. Both flour alternatives have a lower glycemic score, have more fiber and will not irritate your gut like wheat flour can.

Almond flour has a lot of Vitamin E and about sixty-five percent of the fat it contains comes from monounsaturated fat. Why is this good? Monounsaturated fat is known to be excellent in maintaining healthy cholesterol levels and good for overall heart health.

Both flours have a good amount of iron, manganese, and copper but coconut flour is higher in fiber. And we know we needed some protein in there so we increased the amount of eggs from one to two, plus the Greek yogurt in there has a ton of protein! We even have ground flaxseeds for added health benefit, so these muffins are packed with nutrients! We could go on and on about these healthy ingredients but let’s get straight to the recipe!

Ingredients:

Makes 12 muffins

DRY:

¾ cup almond flour

¼ cup coconut flour

¼ cup flax seed

2 tsp.  baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. salt

1/3 cup mini dairy-free chocolate chips

WET:

¼ cup unsweetened vanilla cashew milk

¼ cup maple syrup

2 eggs

¾ cup Siggi’s Vanilla Yogurt

¾ cup almond butter (can use any nut butter you like)

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 350° and line a 12-count muffin pan with cupcake liners and set aside.

2.) In a large bowl, add the dry ingredients, whisk to incorporate and toss in the chocolate chips.

3.) In a medium bowl add all the wet ingredients and stir to incorporate.

4.) Fold in the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until well incorporated, but making sure not to over mix.

5.) Fill each muffin liner with the batter evenly. Sprinkle with chocolate chips on top (optional) and bake for 17-19 minutes or until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean. Allow muffins to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes then move them to a drying rack to finish cooling. Enjoy!

 

Vegan BBQ Sandwich Made With JackFruit and Broccoli Slaw

Sharon Muse

With Father's Day coming up, we wanted to provide you with a quick and easy dish that dad will love as well as the rest of the family - no matter their eating style. This vegan BBQ sandwich is made with jackfruit and in case you aren't familiar with it - it really does have the texture of pulled pork. If you don't want to tell anyone it's vegan, you won't have to :)!

Jackfruit has gained a lot of popularity recently due to the fact that it has a similar texture to chicken or pork and is fairly neutral in flavor. Known as the "Jack of all Fruits" it takes on almost any flavor you put with it and pairs well with sauces. Making it the perfect ingredient for our vegan BBQ sandwich!

Let us tell you a little bit about our star ingredient: Jackfruit is a relative to the fig and is found in tropical areas like Southeast Asia, Brazil, and Africa. It is low in calories, contains no cholesterol or saturated fats like animal products, however, the fruit itself does not contain much protein. It does have a great amount of Vitamin C, A, Iron, Manganese and is a good source of fiber.

We thought this is a great recipe for those days when you want a break from meat as well as an easy dinner to whip up for dad on his special day! Although we love our fathers every day, this Sunday is the perfect time to spoil him and thank him for being the best around. Happy Father's Day to all and we hope you enjoy this recipe!

Ingredients:

serves 4
 

2 cans of Jackfruit (in water, not brine or syrup) drained and rinsed

3/4 cup BBQ sauce of your choice (just watch the sugar content) or more if you like

BBQ seasonings (we used 2 T coconut sugar + 1 tsp paprika + 1 tsp garlic powder + 1/2 tsp chili powder)

1 T Avocado or Olive Oil

Avocado

4 buns

Broccoli Slaw:

Bag of Broccoli Slaw (find this in the produce section of your favorite grocery store)

1/4 cup Veganaise or good quality mayonnaise

3 T Apple Cider Vinegar

1/2 T Honey

1/2 tsp. Celery Seed

1-2 Chopped scallions

Instructions:

1.) Empty the bag of slaw into a large mixing bowl and set aside.

2.) In a small bowl, mix together the veganaise, apple cider vinegar, honey, and celery seed - stir to combine. 

3.) Pour dressing over the bowl of slaw, add scallions and mix together. Place in the refrigerator so that the flavors have a chance to combine. If you can do this a day ahead of time - even better!

4.) While the slaw is cooling off in the fridge, start working on the BBQ jackfruit. Drain, rinse, and thoroughly dry the canned fruit. Slice off the center/core part of the fruit and discard.

5.) In a separate bowl, toss the jackfruit with the bbq seasoning so that it is covered evenly.

6.) Heat oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat, add the seasoned jackfruit and sauté about 3-4 minutes.

7.) Pour the sauce over the fruit and stir. If you are using a thick BBQ sauce you can add a tablespoon of water. For a more shredded texture, use a fork to pull the pieces apart. Reduce heat to low, cover with a lid and let cook for 20-30 minutes (the longer you let cook, the deeper the flavor). 

8.) To plate, open your bun and place some slices of avocado on the bottom, then a spoonful of the slaw. Top with the BBQ jackfruit mixture and option to add a little more BBQ sauce on top. Place the other half of the bun on and ENJOY!!

 

 

 

Fresh Strawberry Nice Cream Bars

Sharon Muse

We were not joking when we said we picked way too many strawberries on our trip to Washington Farms. Since we both individually felt the need to fill our buckets up to the brim with strawberries, we knew were had to create quite a few recipes to work our way through them. First we made a delicious Fresh Strawberry, Arugula and Quinoa Salad with Lime Dressing, then we we baked a Vegan Strawberry Crumble, and now we are giving you this amazing recipe for Strawberry Nice Cream Bars. By now, we are hoping, you've heard of nice cream; the delicious healthy, dairy free alternative to good ol' fashion ice cream. And we are also hoping that you haven't gotten sick of strawberries yet, but honestly, who gets sick of strawberries?!

If you live in Atlanta like we do, you know the humidity has set it and there is nothing better than food that cools you down. Well we lied, there nothing better than some good AC during these hot and humid times but cool foods come in a close second. Since these bars are made with whole food ingredients and minimal additive sugar, we love to enjoy them at all times of the day. Whether that's during the day right after a long walk outside with our dogs or after dinner as we sit and relax on our porch, they are always the perfect cool treat.

After reading our previous strawberry featured posts, you already know that strawberries are rich in anti-inflammatory antioxidants, anti-aging flavonoids, vitamins, and minerals. So lets talk about coconut milk for a second. To some coconut milk has gotten a bad rep because of how calorie and fat dense it is, but it is actually one of the world's healthiest foods. Coconut milk is abundant in medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) fatty acids, specifically lauric acid that’s easily absorbed and used by the body for energy.  We all know how important healthy fats are for us; they improve heart health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, aid in weight loss, help build muscle, and helps prevent joint inflammation and arthritis. Coconut milk also contains electrolytes, that will help you stay hydrated during the hot summer months. The combination of electrolytes and healthy fats improves digestion and relieves constipation by nourishing the digestive lining. On top of the abundant health benefits, coconut milk tastes so good, so there is really no reason why anyone should avoid it. We just suggest that it is consumed in moderation due to it being so high in calories.

Now that you know all the health benefits these nice cream bars have, its time to whip up a batch and see how good they taste! They are the perfect summer dessert and are so easy to make for any dinner party or BBQ you will have this summer. We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

makes 4 bars

Ingredients:

1 frozen banana

6 ounces full fat coconut milk

1-ounce orange juice

1 -2 T maple syrup

Chocolate coating:

1/2 cup Dairy Free Chocolate Chips, we love Enjoy Life Brand

1 tsp. coconut oil

*Will need a popsicle mold that holds at least four ice pops.

Instructions:

1.) Add frozen banana, strawberries, coconut milk, maple syrup and orange juice in a blender and process until smooth.

2.) Pour equally into four popsicle molds and place in the freezer for about 8 hours or overnight.

3.) If you choose to drizzle chocolate over them (and who wouldn't?), remove the popsicle from the mold by running it under hot water for a second. This will loosen it from the mold and should pull right out. Then place them all on a cookie sheet that will fit in your freezer and refreeze for about an hour (to make the chocolate coating). 

4.) To make the chocolate coating, place chocolate chips and coconut oil in a small bowl and melt in the microwave in 30-35 second intervals, stirring in between to melt the chocolate. Be careful not to overheat it as this will burn the chocolate and you will need to start over again.

5.) Pull the popsicle out of the freezer and drizzle the melted chocolate over on top and enjoy!

Gluten-Free, Healthy Blueberry Glazed Donuts

Sharon Muse

As soon as the weekend rolls around we start to crave baked goods and we totally blame our parents for it! Growing up, every weekend we got "treats". It was a rare occurrence to wake up on the weekend and not have a box of donuts or a bag of fresh bagels sitting on the counter. So, baked goods on the weekends are nostalgic and just feel so right. As we got older and started our journey to becoming the best version of ourselves, we realized that these delicious donuts, bagels, muffins and croissants made our bodies feel pretty awful. But that craving never went away! Since we are always in the pursuit of finding healthy AND delicious alternatives, we knew we had to experiment with making a donut. 

We present to you the faux-nut: Gluten-free, natural and whole food based donut. You certainly won't have any tummy aches after indulging in one of these bad boys. Well lets be honest, you can never stop after one donut, so when you reach for that second (or even third) you won't feel any guilt either! You get all the health benefits from oats since we used oat flour as our main base. In our Gluten-free Apple Pancakes post we spoke about how these whole grains boast a good amount of soluble fiber called Beta-Glucan. And since this fiber is absorbed by the body more slowly it will make you feel fuller longer. Beta-glucan has also been shown to lower the LDLs aka the bad cholesterol. Oats have also been shown to reduce the risk of colon cancer, heart disease and aid in weight loss.

Oats are not the only power house food we used in these weekend treats. We also added in some wild blueberries not only for taste but for a big antioxidant boost as well. Now if you're wondering if there is any difference between a wild blueberry and normal blueberry, chances are you didn't get to read our Vegan Strawberry Crumble post where we explained the two. Wild blueberries have 2x the antioxidants of cultivated (normal) blueberries, thanks to a higher concentration in the flavonoid, anthocyanin.

Now if the health benefits alone haven't persuaded you to make these faux-nuts, we are here to tell you they are beyond delicious! We had all members of our family taste test them and they agree too!

makes 6 donuts

Ingredients:

1/2 cup almond flour

3/4 cup gluten-free oat flour (make your own by putting rolled oats in a food processor or blender)

1/4 cup coconut flour

1/4 cup coconut sugar

1 tsp. baking soda

1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

3 large organic eggs, whisked together in a small bowl

1 tsp. good quality vanilla extract

1/4 tsp. blueberry extract (we used Silver Cloud extract, find it here)

3/4 cup frozen or fresh wild blueberries

Glaze:

1 cup Swerve confectioners sugar or organic confectioners sugar

2 T almond milk (any milk will work), use more if you like a thinner glaze

*You will need a donut pan, we found ours at Target

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, add all the dry ingredients (almond flour through salt) together and stir to combine and take out any lumps.

2.) In a small bowl, combine all of the wet ingredients (eggs through Blueberry extract). Stir to combine and set aside.

3.) Toss the blueberries in the dry ingredients to keep them from sinking to the bottom of the pan.

4.) Add wet ingredients to the dry ones and carefully fold together to combine but not break up the blueberries

5.) Spray the donut pan with coconut spray and evenly fill the donut pan. Bake for about 18 minutes or until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean.

6.) Set the donut pan on a cooling rack and let them cool before putting the glaze on.

7.) To make the glaze - make sure there are not any lumps in the powder sugar and then stir in the milk. Dip the top of the donut in the glaze or pour on top. Just be sure to place something under it while pouring - this will make cleaning up a lot easier!!

8.) The glaze will soak into the donut if too thin but it is still delicious! We stored these in the refrigerator and either ate them cold or warmed them up first - either way is delicious.

 

 

 

 

Kale, Banana and Almond Butter Smoothie Bowl

Sharon Muse

The weather here in Atlanta has been increasing getting warmer and warmer, we even reached the 90s last week! As the weather gets nicer and the temperature starts to rise, we start to crave cooler foods so we turn to the good ole smoothie bowl as our go-to breakfast or lunch! Of course it's easy to stop by your local juice bar to pick one up, but there are so many perks to making it yourself. We like to make our own because we can control exactly what goes into it. These little delightful bowls can turn into a sugar bomb if you aren't careful. Many times the base of smoothies bowls consist of ingredients with additional sugar, ie sweetened açaí or pitaya, sweetened yogurt, apple juice and then always a ton of granola or the top.  Yes, we know they taste delicious but you certainly do not need that many grams of sugar in one sitting! Smoothie bowls are really easy to make and when you make them at home they become totally customizable with the ingredients of your choosing. Don't worry, you can sneak all sorts of other goodies in there and feel like you are having a treat.

We made this one with coconut yogurt as we don't eat a ton of dairy but you can really use any kind of yogurt. We do suggest using a plain or unsweetened flavor as the others contain that extra sugar that you don't need since the banana and honey are sweet enough as it is. Next, we used kale to bump up the nutrition and of course, you know we want to eat healthy fats at every meal so we added some all natural almond butter. We used a half of a frozen banana to add creaminess and as a natural sweetener. That and a handful of ice is really all you need to make this nutritious and delicious smoothie bowl. But don't be afraid to make it your own; you can add protein powder for the perfect post work out meal or any of your favorite fruits on top.

serves 1

Ingredients:

1 cup plain coconut yogurt (or any yogurt you like)

1 T Almond Butter

1/2 of frozen banana

handful of kale

handful of ice

Toppings (optional): 

Cacao nibs -we used Navitas

Granola - One Degree Organic Sprouted Oats

Blueberries - wild if you can find them

Honey

Instructions:

1.) Put all the ingredients (except the toppings) in a blender and process until smooth.

2.) Pour into a bowl and top however you like and enjoy!!

 

Vegan Strawberry Crumble

Samantha Serpe

You may remember a couple of weeks ago we took a little road trip and went strawberry picking. It the perfect day; the sun was shining, there was a cool breeze and we practically had the strawberry fields to ourselves. We got so caught up in the moment that we didn't realize how many strawberries we actually picked. We both walked away with a five-pound bucket and wondering what in the world we were going to do with all these strawberries! That night we got home we made a delicious Strawberry, Arugula and Quinoa Salad with Lime Dressing for dinner, but that barely put a dent in our huge haul. So our minds started to churn and we thought who doesn't love a healthy dessert featuring this season's favorite fruit?! And that's when we decided to make this amazing Strawberry Crumble.

As you all know there is a lot more to strawberries than their amazing taste, they also come with a big nutritional punch. If you read our Strawberry, Arugula and Quinoa Salad with Lime Dressing post, you know these ruby-red berries are rich in anti-inflammatory antioxidants, anti-aging flavonoids, vitamins, and minerals. Beta-carotene, which is a precursor to Vitamin A, is responsible for the berry’s beautiful color and Vitamin C is present in the form of ascorbic acid. One cupful of strawberries has over 89% of our daily need of Vitamin A and 149% of Vitamin C. And both of these vitamins bring a ton of anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and immune boosting benefits.

To add even more nutritional value to this dish, we mixed in some frozen wild blueberries. Did you know there is actually a difference between wild blueberries and cultivated blueberries (the ones you typically find at your food store)? Wild blueberries grow naturally in fields and rocky hills, whereas cultivated blueberries take careful planning and planting. Wild blueberries tend to be smaller and appear to be a darker blue. Not only do they look slightly different, they are also more nutritious! Wild blueberries have 2x the antioxidants of cultivated blueberries, thanks to a higher concentration in the flavonoid anthocyanin. If you're wondering, "where the heck do I find these better berries?", we found them in the frozen fruit isle at our local Whole Foods.

The mixture of the fresh strawberries and wild blueberries makes the perfect dessert...it tastes amazing, has a great nutritional value and it won't throw you off your healthy eating plan. We found that it is great for when you have company over because you can mix everything up in advance and then throw it in the oven as your eating dinner. Plus it has totally been a crowd pleaser, especially when we add some vegan vanilla ice cream! We hope you enjoy this dessert as much as our families and we have!

Ingredients:

Strawberry Mixture:

4 Cups fresh strawberries, chopped

1 1/2 Cup wild blueberries (fresh or frozen)

1 T organic cornstarch (or arrowroot)

1/2 T fresh lemon juice

2 T maple syrup

Crumble:

3/4 Cup almond flour

1/3 Cup rolled oats (gluten-free if need be)

1/4 Cup shredded coconut, unsweetened

3/4 Cup coconut sugar

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 Cup chopped walnuts (or your favorite nut)

3 T coconut oil, melted

1 T maple syrup (optional)

Optional: vegan vanilla ice cream

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine all of the Strawberry Mixture ingredients together in an 8"-9" pie dish. Toss to make sure berries are coated evenly.

2.) In a small bowl, combine the Crumble ingredients except for the coconut oil and maple syrup. Mix until well incorporated and then mix in melted coconut oil and taste. If you feel like you would like it sweeter add the tablespoon of maple syrup.

3.) Place in oven and bake for 35-45 minutes until crumble is golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 10-15 minutes. Top with your favorite ice cream and enjoy this healthy, summer dessert!

 

Homemade Sweet Potato Fries

Sharon Muse

Sweet potatoes fries are delicious are extremely nutritious - plus, they are really easy to make at home!

Ingredients:

3 large sweet potatoes

1-2 T olive oil

sea or Himalayan salt

chili powder

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 450°. Slice the sweet potatoes into french fries as evenly as possible (this is not as easy as it looks so just do your best).

2.) Place the fries in a large bowl and drizzle olive oil and sprinkle the salt and chili powder over them and toss to evenly distribute.

3.) Place the fries on a cookie sheet that is lined with foil or parchment paper make sure they are not touching each other - this will help them cook more evenly and get a nice crisp.

4.) Place pan in the top third of the oven and bake for 18-20 minutes total and be sure to flip the fries at the halfway point. If you prefer your fries to be a little more crispy, turn oven to broil and move pan to the middle of oven and cook for an additional 3 minutes.

Vegan Chickpea Burgers with Avocado Sauce

Sharon Muse

Some days just call for a burger and fries, you know what I am talking about don't you? But what is a person to do when they no longer eat red meat? Sure you can always have a turkey burger but we have a recipe for a plant-based burger that we think you will love! 

We've all seen black bean burgers so we decided to see how it would taste if we made a chickpea burger - and it was delicious!! Some of you may be wondering what the difference between a chickpea and a garbanzo bean is - not a thing! Click HERE if you want to read more on the history of the legume and how they came to have different names.

We also added shredded carrots, zucchini, and ground flax seed to punch up the nutrition even more. So these burgers boast a great amount of iron, Vitamin B-6, magnesium, and fiber. Plus these burger and the sauce are completely vegan. 

Whether you are vegetarian, vegan or just interested in trying a meatless burger, we really hope you will enjoy these! Try them with our homemade Sweet Potato Fries as well.

makes 6 burgers

Ingredients:

To make the burger:

2 cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans) drained

2 large carrots grated

1 medium zucchini, grated 

1/2 red onion, finely diced

4 tsp. minced garlic

1 T olive oil (more to cook the patties)

1/2 cup oat flour (you can make your own but putting rolled oats in a blender or food processor)

1 tsp. garlic powder

2 tsp. chili powder

1/2 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. Himalayan salt

1/2 tsp. ground pepper

2 T ground flaxseed

1/3 cup water

2 T ground flax seed

To make the Avocado sauce:

1/4 cup Veganaise (vegan mayo)

1/4 cup vegetable broth

1 medium avocado

Juice of one lemon

Additional optional items: buns, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese

Instructions:

1.) Mix the flaxseed and water in a bowl and place in the refrigerator for about 5-10 minutes while you start making the burgers.

2.) Place one tablespoon of olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add diced onions, carrots, zucchini and garlic and saute until the onions are translucent. Remove from heat and set aside.

3.) Place drained beans in a food processor and pulse leaving some chunks (not pureed). Add the onion mixture and continue to pulse until mixed through. 

4.) Place bean and onion mixture in a large bowl and add the flaxseed and water mixture as well as the oat flour. Add the spices next and mix together.

5.) Make 6 equal sized patties and place on a plate. 

6.) Now make the sauce: In a small bowl, combine the veganaise, broth, avocado, and lemon and whisk together and place in the refrigerator to chill. You can make the sauce ahead of time as well.

7.) In a large sauté pan, heat some olive oil to medium heat. Add the patties, allowing them to cook on each side about 5 minutes. You don't want to overcook them but do want them heated throughout.

8.) Place patties on a bun, top them however you like and add a dollop of the avocado sauce (it's delicious) and enjoy! We served these with homemade sweet potato fries (click HERE for the recipe), also delicious!

 

Peanut Butter and Jelly Cheesecake, Vegan and Gluten-Free

Sharon Muse

Mother's day is around the corner and we created something special we think she will love. This Peanut Butter and Jelly Cheesecake is so delicious and decadent, you won't believe it is actually filled with healthy ingredients - but it is!

For starters, the entire cheesecake contains no dairy at all - but is still as creamy as if it did. There is not a spot of gluten in this either, so if you or your mom is dairy and gluten intolerant or allergic, this is the dessert for you! Often times when we go to a vegan restaurant they don't have many gluten-free items on the menu and especially very few gluten-free desserts but we've got that covered.

This is actually an easy dessert to make but it does take some preparation time so please, please read the recipe and plan ahead of time to surprise your sweet mama! After all, she is worth it - right?!

You may not recognize one of the ingredients, Lucuma powder. We found it at Sprouts so I am sure other health food stores have it or you can get it here from Amazon (just so you know, we do receive a tiny bit of referral income if you purchase it here - but we promise that is not why we are putting it the recipe). Lucuma powder comes from the Lucuma fruit found in Peru. The Peruvian people have been using this for centuries and refer to it as the "Gold of the Incas". They love this flavor so much that it is the most popular flavor ice cream there. 

Now on to Lucum's health benefits - it contains a good amount of calcium, beta-carotene, iron, zinc, Vitamin B3, and protein. It can be used as a natural sweetener and with its low glycemic index, it won't raise your blood sugar level. Regular sugar wreaks havoc on your blood sugar levels, but lucuma powder has been shown to actually stabilize it. It can be used in place of regular sugar by using two tablespoons of lucuma powder to one tablespoon of sugar. You can use it in smoothies, sprinkle some in your yogurt, and even mix up a little in your nut butter to give it a caramel kind of flavor. Here we used it for the flavor as well as it thickens the jelly a bit. It is totally optional though so don't let this deter you from making this amazing cheesecake recipe.

Give this recipe a try and be sure to tag us @sageandcelery so we can see your creations!

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

Crust:
1/2 cup peanuts
1/2 cup shredded coconut
8 Medjool dates - pitted
4 T cacao powder
4 tsp coconut oil
.
Peanut Butter Cheesecake filling:
2 cup raw cashews (soaked for 4-6 hours or boil for 10 minutes then drain)
1 cup raw peanuts (soaked for 4-6 hours or boil for 10 minutes then drain)
1 cup coconut yogurt
2 T coconut oil
2/3 cup smooth natural peanut butter
2/3 cup coconut milk or almond milk
2 T mesquite powder
4 Medjool dates
1 tsp. Himalayan salt

Jelly:
2 cup frozen raspberries
1 cup orange juice
4 tsp. coconut nectar (you can use honey if not vegan)
1 tsp. vanilla bean powder
4 T chia seeds
2 T lucuma powder, optional (this will help it to thicken)

Items you will need:

*Parchment paper

*9-inch springform pan
 

Instructions:


1.) First make the jelly: combine frozen raspberries, orange juice, coconut nectar, vanilla bean powder and chia seeds in a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. You will want to stir while the jelly simmers to break up the berries. Let the jelly simmer around 5 minutes and then remove from the heat and add the Lucuma powder if using. Keep stirring to cool down for a few minutes and place in the refrigerator to cool and thicken. This may take about an hour so it’s good to make ahead.

2.) While the jelly is cooking – 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper. Place all the ingredients for the crust in a high-speed blender and process until smooth. Press down the crust in a 9-inch springform pan that has been lined with parchment paper.

3.) Spread half the jelly over the crust and place back in the refrigerator to chill while you make the delicious peanut butter filling.

4.) In a clean blender, place the drained peanuts and cashews along with all remaining ingredients, blend until smooth and creamy. You may need to scrape down the sides a few times to make sure all the ingredients are blended together well.

5.) Spoon the peanut butter filling on top of crust and jelly. Place in the freezer for 1-2 hours. Remove from freezer and remove the outside of the springform pan. This is the part where you can get creative, top with chopped nuts, drizzle chocolate on top. Place back in freezer until you're ready to serve. Let sit for a few minutes before serving and enjoy!

Fresh Strawberry, Arugula and Quinoa Salad with Lime Dressing

Sharon Muse

As you may have seen from our Instagram posts and stories, we went strawberry picking at Washington Farms last Friday. We had the best time trying to make sure we picked the reddest, shiniest berries and ended up picking a few buckets full. You know us, now that we have our berries, we have to dig in deeper and tell you why these springtime favorites are not only delicious, they are actually really good for you as well.

These ruby-red berries are rich in anti-inflammatory antioxidants, anti-aging flavonoids, vitamins, and minerals. Beta-carotene, which is a precursor to Vitamin A, is responsible for the berry’s beautiful color and Vitamin C is present in the form of ascorbic acid. One cupful of strawberries has over 89% of our daily need of Vitamin A and 149% of Vitamin C. And both of these vitamins bring a ton of anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and immune boosting benefits.

The anti-aging flavonoids, called anthocyanin and catechin have been linked to lowering the risk of heart disease and cancer. So, in addition to strawberries being delicious, there is a really good reason we should be eating them.

We were tired from the day of picking so we whipped up an easy salad using our newest treasures. We added some quinoa for protein but feel free to add some more if you like. If you have time, use some of the dressing to marinate some shrimp or chicken - cook and top over the salad for an even heartier version. We hope you like this salad as much as we do!

makes 2 large entree salads or 3-4 side salads

Ingredients:

5 oz. arugula (already washed)

2 oz. goat cheese, crumbled

1 cup chopped strawberries

½ cup cooked quinoa

¼ cup chopped walnuts

avocado

Lime Dressing:

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

¼ cup olive oil

zest of one lime

2 T lime juice (or the juice of 1.5 limes)

Instructions:

1.) In a mason jar with a lid, place all of the ingredients for the dressing. Place the lid on top and give is several good shakes to emulsify all the ingredients. You can also place all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine.

2)   In a large bowl, place arugula and quinoa and toss evenly.

3.) Top the salad with goat cheese, strawberries, walnuts, and avocado.

4.) Toss with lime dressing – you will have a good bit left over, it makes a great marinade or store in the refrigerator.

5.)  Evenly distribute in bowls or plates and enjoy!

Maca Energy Bites

Sharon Muse


If you are on the hunt for a quick snack to give you some energy, these Maca bites are the perfect solution! It's no wonder energy bites or balls (as they are sometimes called) are all the rage right now; they are easy to make ahead of time and store in the refrigerator - perfect for a grab and go lifestyle. We decided to add in the superfood, Maca into these - so let's talk about why...

The Maca root is actually a cruciferous vegetable closely related to broccoli, cauliflower, and even kale. It's native to Peru and has been used for its medicinal properties for thousands of years and while it boasts a ton of nutritional value, it's worth noting that studies on maca are still in the early stages. We expect to hear even more about this vegetable in the future.

Maca is used mainly after it has been ground into powder form. This turnip-like vegetable is a good source of carbs, protein, and fiber which make it perfect to add to your pre or post workout snack. It is high in Vitamin C, copper and iron and even contains over 20 amino acids - including all 8 of the essential ones.

Maca powder is rich in antioxidants and has been shown to improve energy and mood, balance estrogen levels and boost male fertility.  Sprinkle it over oatmeal or in a smoothie or of course use it in these delicious energy bites!

Ingredients:

1 cup Cashews

1 cup Almonds

10 dates, pitted

1 T chia seeds

1 T Maca Powder**

2 T cacao powder

2 T almond milk or other non-dairy milk of choice

2 tsp. cinnamon

2 T sunflower seeds

optional: shredded coconut, cacao nibs for coating

Instructions:

1.) Process nuts in a high-power blender or food processor until they resemble the consistency of flour. Then add the dates, chia seeds, maca and cacao powder, cinnamon, almond milk and process some more until all are incorporated.

2.) Add the sunflower seeds at the end and pulse leaving these in bigger pieces to add crunch.

3.) Take about a tablespoon full of the mixture and roll it into a ball. Repeat until done, placing the bites on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper. Roll each in shredded coconut, cacao nibs or just leave plan and enjoy! Store in the refrigerator to keep fresh.

**We found Maca powder at Whole Foods or you can find it here.

Egg Roll In A Bowl with Tofu

Sharon Muse

We know that making dinner after a long day is not always easy. Sometimes you just want to have dinner delivered - we get it and we are totally guilty of doing that too. But the problem with takeout is you never really know what exactly is in the meal. How much fat did they use? How much sugar is actually in that sauce? And don't get us started about how you might feel afterward - bloated, gassy. Has this ever happened to you? We have a solution - yes, it does involve getting in the kitchen but only for a few minutes and the results are delicious, nutritious and won't leave you feeling poorly. 

We are taking the good part of an egg roll, the veggies - adding in a few other veggies and some tofu - and voila, you have a tasty dinner that will take less time than it does to wait for the delivery person to ring your doorbell!

serves: 2

Ingredients:

Base:

1 bag of broccoli slaw

1/2 of a small head of purple cabbage, thinly sliced

1/2 Cup mushrooms, sliced

1/2 of a red onion, thinly sliced 

1/4 Cup green onion, thinly sliced

1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper

2-3 cloves of garlic, minced 

2-3 T sesame oil

Sauce:

1 T sesame oil

1/4 cup liquid coconut aminos or Tamari (gluten-free soy sauce)

2 tsp. grated ginger

1 tsp. minced garlic

2 T rice wine vinegar

Tofu:

4 oz. extra firm tofu, squeezed and sliced into 4 triangles (or protein of choice)

2-4 T Tamari 

1 tsp. grated ginger

optional topping: sliced green onions, sesame seeds

Instructions:

1.) Place sliced tofu in a bowl and pour some tamari over it and add ginger. Toss to coat and let sit to marinate while you prepare veggies and sauce. Flip once while you are making the veggies.

2.) Add 2 tablespoons of sesame oil to start to a medium-sized sauté pan and heat to medium-high. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, crushed red pepper, broccoli slaw, and cauliflower. If the veggies seem too dry add the additional tablespoon of sesame oil. Stirring often and saute until the veggies are cooked and a little wilted. 

3.) In a small bowl whisk together all of the Sauce ingredients. Pour over sautéed veggies and continue to cook for an additional 3-5 minutes.

4.) While the veggies are cooking start to cook the tofu. Get a smaller sauté pan and heat sesame oil over medium-high. Add marinated tofu and cook on each side to heat through - about 2 - 3 minutes each side.

5.) Divide veggies equally into bowls, add the tofu and top with sliced green onions and sesame seeds if desired and enjoy!

Vegan and Gluten-Free Almond Butter Eggs

Sharon Muse

So...we are on a bit of a chocolate and nut butter kick these past few weeks, but the combination is amazing so we decided to take a shot at remaking an old favorite. Do you remember those delicious egg-shaped Reese's cups? As kids, we would look forward to them every year in our Easter baskets. Why did they taste so much better in an egg shape? While we love them still, we wanted to create a delicious version but one without so much processed sugar, preservatives, and ingredients that our body does not recognize.

We also slightly amped up the nutritional value by using almond butter instead of peanut butter. While both peanut butter and almond butter have similar nutritional value, almond butter does come out on top in a few areas. Almond butter has almost twice the amount of fiber per serving, nearly three times as much Vitamin-E and about twenty-five percent more monounsaturated fat as peanut butter. Remember, monounsaturated fat is the good kind of fat, the heart-healthy kind. However, if you just can't live without your peanut butter, then, by all means, use that instead. The result will be delicious and you will still be able to pronounce and recognize every ingredient in this recipe!

We also added a date caramel paste to update these egg cups but again, if you are a traditionalist in this area, just leave that part off.

So...have some fun making these, it's not often we get to play with our food and get away with it, enjoy! 

 

Ingredients:

1 cup almond butter

1/2 cup coconut flour

1/4 cup maple syrup

Date Paste:

5 dates, pitted

1.5 T water

1/8 - 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Chocolate Coating:

1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips

2 tsp. coconut oil

Instructions:

1.) In a medium-size bowl, mix almond butter, coconut flour, and maple syrup together and set aside.

2.) If your dates are not soft and fresh, soak them in very hot water for 10-15 minutes and drain before using. Place the softened dates, water, and vanilla in a food processor and blend until it resembles a paste and set aside.

3.) Take a scoop of the almond butter mixture and form into egg shapes and press down in the center to leave a spot for the date/caramel paste. Spoon a little on top of the egg and repeat until you are finished with both. You should have about 15 or more egg shapes, depending on how big you make them. We suggest making them about as thick as traditional Reese's cup. place them on a tray and freeze for 20-30 minutes.

4.) In a medium-size microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate chips and coconut oil. You should do this in about 30-second increments and stir in between so the chocolate doesn't burn. While the chocolate is melted, dip your frozen egg shapes into the chocolate making sure all sides are covered. Allow to cool on a piece of was paper to harden or freeze to harden even more quickly. Store in the refrigerator, eat cold or bring them to room temperature - either way, they are delicious!

Gluten-Free and Wheat-Free Chocolate Peanut Butter Muffins

Sharon Muse

This delicious muffin recipe came as a result of a craving for Reese's peanut butter cup AND a chocolate cake. We wanted something that tasted delicious but wasn't full of all the refined and processed sugar and flours that you normally see with baked goods. These muffins taste almost too good to be healthy - but they aren't - they are gluten and wheat free and have about 25% of your daily fiber needs in one little muffin. They are made with oat flour, so along with the fiber, you also get heart healthy benefits...all while eating something that tastes like it came from a bakery. 

Sometimes healthy baked treats taste alright for your everyday life, but they may not taste good enough to serve when company comes over. Well, we say that life is too short to eat bad food! Healthy food can taste amazing as well and we think you can serve these muffins to anyone, they are that good! In fact, we are going to add them to our Easter brunch menu...drizzled with the Peanut Butter Maple Sauce - yum!

makes 10-12 muffins

Ingredients:

Dry:

1/4 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking powder

1 cup gluten-free oat flour

1/2 cup almond meal

1/2 cup powdered peanut butter

3/4 good quality unsweetened cocoa

Wet:

1/2 cup organic maple syrup

1 cup unsweetened coconut milk, from a carton

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2 T coconut oil (use refined or melt first)

1/4 cup (plus a little extra if you want to sprinkle on top) dairy-free dark chocolate chips, we used Enjoy Life brand

Optional Peanut Butter - Maple Sauce:

1/4 cup natural peanut butter

2 T  organic maple syrup

4-6 T unsweetened cashew milk

1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven to 350°.

2.) Place all of the dry ingredients (with the exception of the chocolate chips) together in a large bowl and whisk together to combine until clumps are gone

3.) In a smaller bowl, combine all of the wet ingredients together and whisk to combine.

4.) Mix the wet ingredients in with the dry ingredients and start to combine. Fold in the chocolate chips and continue to combine all of the ingredients.

5.) Spray a 12 count muffin pan with coconut spray and evenly scoop the batter into the muffin pan. Sprinkle with extra chocolate chips if you like. 

6.) Bake for about 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow the muffins to cool in the pan for at least 10 minutes before you dive into them (it's hard to wait for these babies but it is worth the wait!). Drizzle the sauce over them if desired - you won't be sorry ;)

*Note: Depending on the size of your scoop, you may not have enough batter to fill 12 muffins. If this happens, be sure pour a little water into the empty cups before putting the pan in the oven. This will protect the pan from burning.

To make the Peanut Butter Maple Sauce:

1.) Combine all the ingredients (start with 4 tablespoons of the milk and add more to achieve the desired consistency) in a bowl and whisk together. Drizzle on top of the muffin or dip the muffin into it - or smother it with it - this sauce is Ah-mazing!! Enjoy! If you have any leftover sauce, store it in the refrigerator for up to a week - you will need to heat the sauce to use it to bring it to a thinner consistency.

Easy, Healthy and Delicious Green Juice

Sharon Muse

St. Patrick's Day is just a few days away so before you reach for the green beer and green milkshake, we want to give you a delicious and easy green juice recipe. We aren't saying don't enjoy the day and all it has to offer, but why not fuel up on some amazing nutrients to balance it out!

We have two main ingredients that are filled with vitamins and nutrients - apple and spinach. I am sure you know that apples contain a good amount of Vitamin C and fiber which is great, but they also bring some more benefits leading the Medical News Today who list them as one of the top 15 healthy foods. Apples also contain a complex of B vitamins, phytonutrients, minerals like calcium and potassium, and the antioxidant Quercetin which has been found to have benefits in neurological health.

Spinach is another one of the top 15 healthy foods, Popeye was definitely on to something - but we prefer our spinach fresh rather than the canned variety. Spinach boasts a ton of vitamin A which is great for our skin and hair as well a vitamin C which in addition to helping our immune system - it also helps build and maintain collagen. So this juice drink is like a facial in a cup:). Spinach also has a lot of potassium, vitamin K, fiber, iron, calcium and is a great source of magnesium. If you lift weights at all, then you know magnesium is your friend as it helps us maintain muscle along with a whole host of other benefits.

This is juice recipe is really just a starter one - you can customize it with anything else you like. If the lemon is too acidic for you today, try swapping it for a half of an orange. Also, add anything else you like - ginger would be great as well as cucumber and carrots. The juice makes a fantastic afternoon pick-me-up instead of reaching for a cookie or coffee. 

Give it a try and let us know what you think and Happy St. Patrick's Day!

serves: 1

Ingredients:

1/2 of a lemon, peeled 

1 small organic apple, cut so that you don't use the seeds

a handful (1-2 cups loosely packed) of organic fresh spinach

1/2 cup of ice

1/2 cup of water

Instructions:

1.) Place all in a high-speed blender, blend, and enjoy!

Keto Salmon Cakes with a Citrus Dill Sauce

Sharon Muse

Experimenting with different diets to try and find the perfect one for your body can be fun...when it is at your own will. But when your doctor prescribes a diet, it seems as though your world goes up in flames and you totally forget how to eat. And that is exactly what had happened when the ketogenic diet was highly recommended to us. Oddly enough, we both were urged to try the keto diet by our doctors but at different times and in the beginning it left us feeling lost and like we could never eat anything delicious again. For those of you wondering, the keto diet is high fat, moderate protein, and low carb in hopes that you can get your body to go into ketosis where it burns fat for fuel instead of carbs. Also, removing majority of carbs from your diet can help with internal inflammation. Samantha was most recently "prescribed" this diet, but also had the limitation of no dairy. And that is what lead us to this amazing recipe!

Most of the time when you see salmon cakes or burgers they are filled with unnecessary ingredients that can take a toll on your body's internal functions. These salmon cakes are gluten free, dairy free, paleo, and meet all the requirements of a keto meal. Wild caught salmon may be one of the healthiest foods out there because of all the health benefits it provides to your entire body.  We want to urge "wild caught" salmon because the nutritional benefits are different from farm raised salmon. Wild caught salmon has a number of benefits for the entire body, many of them resulting from salmon’s amazing amount of omega-3 fatty acids. For example, foods rich in omega-3 are shown to increase the efficiency of various brain functions, including improved memory and can help prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease. Omega-3 fatty acids also aid in heart health, healthy skin and cancer defense. These are just a few reason to regularly incorporate salmon into your diet and these salmon cakes will help you do that!

We took these salmon cakes on a taste test run and made them for a few of our friends, and wow, they were a hit! Everyone fell in love. This recipe is extremely easy to make and it's great because you will have left overs for lunch the next day. For us, the best part about this meal is that is fills you up and keeps you feeling satisfied for a long time. So it cuts out the urge, (we occasionally, not so occaionally get) to deviate from the keto diet. We served our salmon cakes over a simple salad with diced tomatoes and avocado. If you aren't limiting carbs, these can be made into delicious salmon burgers served on sprouted grain buns topped with all your favorite condiments and toppings. Either way, they won't disappoint! 

makes 7-8 patties

Ingredients:

1 lbs. of fresh, wild caught salmon

1/8 cup olive oil (plus 1-2 T to cook the patties)

1/2 small onion, diced finely

1 red bell pepper, diced finely

2 garlic cloves

1/2 - 3/4 cup almond flour**

2 eggs beaten

2 T mayonnaise (we used Fabanaise which is vegan)

1 T Dijon mustard

2 T dried parsley

2 T fresh dill, chopped

salt & pepper

Citrus Dill Sauce:

1 cup mayonnaise (can use plain greek yogurt if you like)

1 lemon, zested and juiced

1-2 T chopped fresh dill

salt & pepper

Instructions:

1.) Preheat oven 425°. On a sheet pan lined with parchment paper, pour the 1/8 cup olive oil over salmon and sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast for 10-15 minutes.

2.) As the salmon bakes, dice the bell pepper and onion and chop the dill

3.) Let the salmon cool for a bit and then with two forks, flake the salmon apart and make sure to pick out any bones. Once you are finished put the flaked salmon on a plate and cool in the refrigerator for about 10-15 minutes.

4.) While the salmon is cooling, make the Citrus Dill Sauce by combining all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together and set aside.

5.) In a medium-sized bowl, add **1/2 cup of almond flour (see note) and the rest of the ingredients. Mix together thoroughly. and form into 7-8 patties. 

6.) Heat olive oil in a large saute pan and cook the patties 4-5 minutes on each side.

7.) We placed the patty on top of mixed greens, chopped tomatoes, and chopped avocado. Pour the citrus dill sauce over and enjoy!

* Extra salmon cakes will last up to 4 days in the fridge and can be frozen. Reheat on an oiled skillet for 5 minutes.

**NOTE: If the salmon mixture seems too moist add more almond flour to get the mixture to form patties, adding in one tablespoon at a time until the right consistency is achieved to form a patty.

 

Paleo and Vegan Chocolate Truffles

Sharon Muse

Chocolate is a regular in our diet so even though Christmas and Valentine's Day have passed the taste of chocolate has not and there's no way we could wait until Easter. Our theory is, if you are gonna have some chocolate, why not do it right and eat a chocolate truffle?! But we aren't talking about just any old truffle - these are homemade and healthier than the store-bought kind. 

Another great thing about this recipe is that it is easy to make and completely dairy-free. So if you have people in your house allergic to dairy - go ahead and let them enjoy these! You won't miss the dairy at all. While these truffles are easy to make, they are so creamy and decadent - you will feel like you are treating yourself. So go ahead and give these a try - sit back with your favorite Netflix show, a glass of red wine and enjoy!

Ingredients:

makes about 2 dozen, depending on the size you make them

Truffles:

2 cups Dairy Free Chocolate Chips (we use the brand Enjoy Life)

1 cup of canned coconut milk

2 T coconut oil

1/4 cup coconut sugar

1 T chia seeds

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 tsp. mint extract

Coating:

1 cups Dairy Free Chocolate Chips

2 tsp. coconut oil

toppings (optional): dried coconut, coarse sea salt, cacao nibs, chopped nuts, macadamia nuts if you want to stuff the truffles while rolling

Instructions:

1.) To make the truffles: Place chocolate chips, coconut oil, coconut milk and coconut sugar in a medium-sized glass or microwavable bowl. And microwave in 30 seconds increments (stirring in between) until the chocolate is melted and smooth. **If you prefer not to use a microwave, you can heat the ingredients on LOW in a medium-sized pot and stir frequently so the chocolate doesn't burn.

2.) Add the extract, chia seed and stir to combine. Pour into an 8" x 8" glass pan. Make sure the mixture has cooled to room temperature and then put in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours allowing the chocolate mixture to cool completely.

3.) Now that the delicious chocolate mixture is chilled, scoop into balls (can use a spoon or a small ice cream/melon scooper). Working quickly, place truffles on a cookie sheet that is lined with wax paper. If you want to stuff the truffle with nuts now is the time!

4.) Now place the truffles in the freezer for 30-45 minutes and then roll them into round balls.

5.) While the truffles are freezing - start to prepare the coating. In a glass bowl, place the chocolate chips and coconut oil and microwave in 30-second increments until the chocolate has melted. You can do this on the stove on LOW - **see above.

6.) Using a fork or toothpick, dip the chilled truffle balls (one at a time) in the melted chocolate and place on wax paper. This is when you want to sprinkle your topping on if using. Once finished, place the coated truffles in the refrigerator to harden. Once they harden you can enjoy!

10 Minute Avocado Pesto Zucchini Noodles with Blackened Shrimp

Sharon Muse

There are so many nights where we are completely pooped and the last thing we want to do is cook dinner. We are constantly trying to come up with recipes that take minimal effort and time because lets face it, a bowl of cereal is just not going to cut it. On the days we are tired and feeling run down, there is no better feeling than going to sleep full and knowing we gave our bodies the nutrients to power forward the next day.

This Avocado Pesto Zucchini Noodle dish is the perfect remedy for those long days. It can be made in 10 minutes and the avocado pesto sauce only contains SIX ingredients! Besides being extremely convenient, this dish has some pretty awesome health benefits. It is filled with heart healthy monounsaturated fats from the avocados and olive oil. Monounsaturated fats, also known as oleic acid, is believed to help reduce inflammation, and may have beneficial effects on genes linked to cancer. Avocados are high in fiber, low in carbs, and contain more than 20 vitamins and minerals, making them an amazing food for the health conscious eater. It has been shown that diets high in fat have been linked to weight loss since they keep you fuller longer, allowing you to consume less calories while still being satisfied. 

We decided to add some blackened shrimp on top to give this dish a boost of protein, but it also adds a wonderful spicy flavor that perfectly compliments the creaminess of the avocado pesto. Being high in fat, moderate protein, and low in carbs this dish is suitable for anyone who is following the ketogenic or low carb diet. If you opt not to sauté the zucchini to warm it up then it will be a completely raw meal (minus the shrimp of course). Taking the shrimp off will also make it vegan friendly! 

This dish is definitely on our top 5 list of quick, easy, and delicious meals, we hope it becomes one of your go-tos on the night when you "just can't" any longer.

serves 4

Ingredients:

For Blackened Shrimp:

1 pound of peeled and deveined shrimp

1-2 T olive oil

1 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. onion powder

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper, ground

1/4 tsp. dried oregano

1/4 tsp. dried basil

2 tsp. smoked paprika

1/2 tsp. ground thyme

1/2 tsp. salt

For Pesto Pasta:

4 medium zucchinis

1 cup fresh basil packed loosely

2 ripe avocados

1/4 cup pine nuts

2 cloves of garlic

1/4 cup olive oil + 2 T for sautéing 

1 lemon, juiced

salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

1.) Combine all the spices for the blackened seasoning in a bowl or mason jar and stir to combine. In a larger bowl, place shrimp and drizzle with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil or until coated. Add blackened seasoning and toss until shrimp is completely covered. Place in refrigerator until ready to cook.

2.) Using a spiralizer, make zucchini noodles. Place on a clean kitchen towel or paper towels and squeeze out any extra moisture.

3.) To make the pesto, combine the basil, avocado, pine nuts, garlic, 1/4 cup of olive oil and lemon juice in a food processor or high-speed blender. Pulse or blend on high until smooth - taste and now add in salt and pepper to your liking.

4.) In a large cast iron skillet, heat 1 Tbsp. of olive and add shrimp. Sauté until they become a pinkish color and are no longer translucent.

5.) As shrimp is cooking, heat 1 Tbsp. of olive in a separate skillet. Add zucchini noodles and let cook 1-2 minutes. Then add the avocado pesto, mixing until all the noodles are coated.

6.) Place noodles in a bowl and top with blackened shrimp. Enjoy!

 

 

 

Paleo Chocolate Molten Lava Cake

Sharon Muse

Nothing says "I love you" like chocolate! Whether you are celebrating Valentine's Day with your significant other or with your best friend, you will want to have this cake as part of your celebration!

We took the traditional molten lava cake recipe and made a few changes - well, we think we made a few improvements. We took all the gluten and flour out and you won't miss it one bit. We also switched out the butter and used coconut oil. The results? A delicious and healthy-ish dessert that is elegant enough for company but easy enough for a weeknight. 

In full disclosure, we tested this recipe several times (it's a hard job, we know). Each time we made it, it tasted amazing but came out more cake like and less molten lava-like. This was a labor of love so we kept trying until it was just the way we wanted it to be! After many times, we learned to keep an eye on your oven and pull it out before you think it is finished, it will be worth it in the end!

Ingredients: 

Makes 4

3/4 cup (4.5 oz) semi-sweet or dark dairy-free chocolate chips

1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 tsp. mint extract

1/8 tsp. salt

3 T coconut sugar

1 tsp. coconut flour

2 tsp. cacao or cocoa powder (plus more to flour the ramekins)

2 egg

2 egg yolk

4.5 T coconut oil (plus more to grease the ramekins)

4 heart-shaped or round ramekins

Instructions:

1.) Preheat your oven to 375° and grease the bottoms and sides of 4 ramekins with coconut oil and then flour the bottoms and sides with cacao or cocoa powder and set aside.

2.) Heat chocolate and coconut oil on the stove or microwave, stirring until all the chocolate is melted. 

3.) Let the chocolate mixture cool and set aside. In a small bowl, combine eggs, vanilla extract, mint extract, salt and sugar and beat with a hand mixer for about 2 minutes or until the coconut sugar is dissolved

4.) Pour egg mixture over the chocolate mixture. Sift the cacao or cocoa powder and coconut flour on top and gently fold all the ingredients together until blended through. Be careful not to stir too much air into the mixture.

5.) Pour the batter into the greased and floured ramekins evenly. Place all on one baking sheet and bake 12-14 minutes (see note).

6.) Remove the ramekins from the oven and let sit for just about 1 minute. You can then invert onto a plate or eat right out of the ramekin. Feel free to garnish with powdered sugar, mint leaves, strawberries, cacao nibs - whatever sounds good to you. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Notes: If you are using heart-shaped ramekins, we found they only needed to bake for about 12 minutes. The traditional round ones we tested used were deeper and needed to bake for about 14 minutes.

 

Homemade Gluten and Grain Free Pizza Dough, Made with Cassava Flour

Sharon Muse

There are many reasons to make your own pizza crust! It is quick and easy. It's actually a lot of fun. You can also add in flavors that you love so it can be customized to your tastes. Plus you know exactly what is going into your dinner.

A lot of people we know (including us) try to avoid grains when we can but that can leave us feeling deprived. Who wants to go through life without pizza? Not us, so we thought about using cassava flour as the base for pizza crust and let me tell you - the results are delicious! You may remember we used cassava flour to make delicious gluten and grain-free tortillas, you can read all about the benefits of cassava flour and get that recipe HERE.

We think this pizza crust is perfect for a casual Valentine's Day dinner with your sweetie or make it the day before and invite your girlfriends over for Galentine's Day (yep, it's really a thing) - whenever you decide to make this pizza crust, trust us, you will be glad you did!

Serving size: 2 single size pizza crusts

Ingredients:

3/4 cup Casava Flour

1/4 cup arrowroot flour

1 T coconut flour

1 T coconut sugar

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. dried basil*

1/2 tsp. dried and minced rosemary*

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt (we used Himalayan Salt but any will do)

1/4 cup ghee (soften grass-fed butter will work too)

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (any dairy-free milk will work)

1 T flax seed ground

freshly cracked pepper to taste

(*feel free to play around with the dried herbs to suit your taste)

Topping: you can use whatever you like, we topped one pizza with tomato sauce, roasted vegetables, mozzarella cheese, and dolloped with sun-dried tomato pesto. The other we first topped with ricotta (about 1/4 cup) and a sprinkle of mozzarella cheese and baked for 5-7 minutes. Then once out of the oven we topped it with arugula and parmesan cheese, squeezed lemon juice over it and drizzled some olive oil.

Instructions:

1.) Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Like a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2.) Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and mix together. At some point, you will need to get in there with your hands and knead the dough until all the flour is mixed in.

3.) Split the dough in half and cover one piece while you are rolling out the other.

4.) Between two pieces of parchment paper, roll out the dough until it is thin. If you like a thicker crust, you will just need to bake it longer. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and repeat with the other piece of dough.

5.) Bake your crust for 10-12 minutes then flip the pizza crust and bake fore an additional 10-12 minutes. This can vary depending on how thick or thin you roll your crust.

6.) Remove the crust from the oven and top however you like. (Get creative - this is a great time to sneak veggies in!). Top with cheese of choice and bake for another 5-7 minutes until the cheese is melted. Let it cool for a few minutes, slice and enjoy!