Salted Chocolate Avocado Pudding

Adapted from the Chopra Center

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium, ripe avocados
  • 1 cup (240 ml) milk (your choice - I use almond)
  • 1/2 cup (150 g) maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup (75 g) cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon almond (or other nut or seed) butter

Directions:          

Place all ingredients, except avocados, into a food processor or blender. Mix on high until well-combined. Add avocados and continue to blend until mixture is very smooth and creamy. Adjust sweetness to taste using additional maple syrup or stevia.

 Refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours before serving. Delicious topped with nuts, berries, or chocolate chips.

 

                   

Chocolate Lava Cake - Paleo

Adapted from Thrive Market Recipes

I'd love to call this "healthy" yet it does have quite a bit of sugar - in the form of maple syrup and coconut sugar. While these are better forms of sweetener than refined cane sugar, they are still sugars. SO - this is not for breakfast, but makes a lovely special occasion dessert!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup (237 ml) melted coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla, optional
  • 1 cup (125 g) raw cacao powder, plus more for serving
  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • 1 1/4 cup (250 g) coconut sugar, divided
  • 1 cup (100g) almond flour
  • Optional - fresh berries for serving

Preheat oven to 350° (180°). Line an 8 or 9-inch (20 - 23 cm) springform pan with parchment paper and coat with coconut oil.

Combine maple syrup, coconut oil, and cacao powder in a small saucepan set over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, then reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 2 minutes. Take off heat and set aside to cool slightly.

Combine egg yolks and 3/4 cup (150 g) coconut sugar in a large bowl and whisk until the mixture is thick, fluffy, and pale in color. Fold in the cacao mixture and vanilla (if using), and then fold in almond flour.

Place egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on high until soft peaks form. With the mixer running, slowly pour in remaining 1/2 cup (100 g) coconut sugar and beat until shiny, stiff peaks form. Working in batches, slowly fold the egg white mixture into cacao batter. Transfer mixture to prepared tin and bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool slightly, then dust with cacao powder. (I skipped the dusting).

Slice and serve—the inside of the cake should be fudgy and runny. If you prefer a completely solid cake, cover and refrigerate for an hour after baking to set. 

Chocolate Brownies - Paleo

Adapted from elenaspantry.com. More cake-like than brownie, but a nice chocolate flavor, delicious topped with raspberries!

  • 1 cup (100 g) blanched almond flour
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 ounces (110 g) 100% chocolate
  • 7 medjool dates (remove pits) 
  • 3 large eggs
  • ½ cup (100 g) coconut oil, melted
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla stevia (I used ½ teaspoon vanilla plus ½ teaspoon liquid stevia)
  • Optional - dark chocolate chips for topping

Instructions

  1. In a food processor, pulse together almond flour, salt, and baking soda
  2. Pulse in dark chocolate until texture of coarse sand
  3. Pulse in dates until texture of coarse sand
  4. Pulse in eggs, coconut oil, (vanilla) and stevia until mixture is smooth
  5. Transfer mixture to a greased 8 x 8 inch baking dish
  6. Mixture will be very thick, smooth with a spatula
  7. Sprinkle with dark chocolate chips, if desired
  8. Bake at 350° F (180° C) for 18-22 minutes
  9. Cool and serve!

Brown Rice Crispie Treats with Cherries and Chocolate

Adapted from Food Network

A much healthier version than that traditional rice treat. Fun to experiment with and add nuts, use a seed butter or to add other dried fruits.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (170 g) raw organic honey
  • 1/2 cup (125 g) peanut or almond butter (natural preferred)
  • 5 - 6 cups (150 -180 g) crispy brown rice cereal (I used Erewhon brand)
  • 2/3 cup (85 g) chopped dried cherries or cranberries (3 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup (85 g) dark chocolate chips (they can be difficult to find - you can substitute a chopped dark chocolate bar)

Combine honey and nut butter in a large pot and heat over medium-low heat until melted, about 2-3 minutes. Add brown rice cereal, dried fruit and chocolate and stir thoroughly to combine. Press into a 9 by 13-inch (approx. 33 x 23 cm) pan lined with parchment or rubbed with coconut oit. Let cool, then chill for 30 minutes. Cut and serve!
 

Chocolate Avocado Ice Cream

From Jessicainthekitchen.com

Ingredients

  • 1 can (13.5 ounce/400 ml) full fat coconut milk
  • 1 medium avocado, peeled and pitted 
  • 1/2 cup (50 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons (400 g) maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) water

Toppings as desired - chocolate sauce, berries, toasted coconut, toasted nuts (or all of them)

 

Instructions

  1. Add the avocado and coconut milk to a food processor/blender and pulse together.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and blending for about 2 minutes until smooth and incorporated, scraping down the bowl once.

Ice Cream Maker

  1. Place all ice cream base into a freezer-safe container in the refrigerator for 2 hours to set up before freezing.
  2. Freeze the ice cream according to the manufacturer's instructions for your machine.

No Ice Cream Maker

  1. Place all ice cream base into a freezer-safe container and place in the freezer and allow to freeze for 1 hour.
  2. Whisk slightly every 20 minutes to avoid it getting too icy for 3-4 hours. It should be getting thicker after each whisking, until it's firm enough to scoop.

Serve immediately or if freezing first, thaw for 5-10 minutes before scooping.

Summer Vegetable Stew (with Beef - or not)

Had a bounty of veggies from the farmer's market and created this dish - a delicious blend of flavors. This dish can be prepared with our without meat. Substitute quinoa, beans or lentils for a vegetarian/vegan dish

Ingredients

  • 1 lb (500 g) ground beef (preferably pastured) - optional. Substitute prepared quinoa, beans or lentils if desired.
  • 1-2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 3 medium summer squash (zucchini, yellow etc.), diced
  • 1 medium eggplant, diced
  • 1 lb (500 g) green beans, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 26 - 28oz (750 g) chopped tomatoes (I use a Pomi tetrapak)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano (or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt (or more, to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper (or more, to taste)
  • tomato paste to thicken, optional
  • chopped parsley to garnish, optional

Preparation

In a large pot, heat olive oil and add onion and beef, if using. Saute until the onion is soft and the meat (if including) has starting to brown. Add squash, eggplant and green beans and saute for a few minutes. Add tomatoes and spices (and beans or lentils, if using), cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes, until vegetables are tender. I add tomato paste to thicken and give more tomato flavor. Adjust seasoning as desired. Garnish and serve.

Grain-free Applesauce Pancakes

Adapted from fitfoodiefinds.com

Ingredients

  • 4 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup (170 g) apple sauce, unsweetened
  • 1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup (75 g) almond meal
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Berries, nuts or other toppings as you choose. Delicious with blueberries.

 

Instructions

  1. Whisk eggs in a bowl.  Add applesauce, maple syrup or honey, vanilla extract and coconut oil and whisk well.
  2. Blend in almond meal and baking powder and mix until combined.
  3. Heat pan to low/medium and add pancake batter. 
  4. Let cook for about 3-4 minutes on the first side, or until firm enough to flip. Be patient - wait until pancakes appear dry on the edges. 
  5. Cook the second side for around 2-3 minutes or until fully cooked. 

Raw Chocolate Truffles

Prep time:  20 minutes

Makes 25 truffles (unless you’re like me and tasting as you go…)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (100 g) raw cacao powder (cocoa powder will work also)
  • 1 cup (150 g) cashews
  • ½ cup (118 ml) maple syrup
  • Water (to mix)
  • Roll-in ingredients: shredded coconut, chopped nuts, chocolate nibs, raw sugar, cacao powder, ginger, or something else you love.

 

 

Instructions:

  • Mix nuts in a food processor until a powder, adding enough water to create a thick paste. (I often use nut butter and haven’t needed the water.)
  • Add maple syrup to nuts and pulse to process.
  • Add cacao powder. Pulse to process.
  • Refrigerate for four hours or overnight for best results.
  • Form teaspoon-sized balls of dough and coat with your chosen roll-in ingredients.
  • EAT!

Healthy Banana Fudge Cookies

Modified from A Clean Bake. True confession - what I love most about these is the batter. I can (and do) eat it with a spoon. No guilt. 

Ingredients

  • 2 large or 4 small very ripe bananas, mashed or pureed until smooth (about 1 1/2 cups or 355 ml puree)
  • 1/2 cup (135 g) natural nut butter. (I used almond. Peanut would be delicious.) 
  • 1/2 cup (50 g) good quality cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon raw honey (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • coarse sea salt, for garnish
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (180 C).
  2. In a large mixing bowl, use a fork to thoroughly combine all ingredients, except the sea salt, until the batter is smooth.
  3. Place heaping tablespoons of dough onto a greased or lined cookie sheet (I use a silpat mat), about 1 inch apart. Sprinkle the tops of the cookies with a pinch of sea salt.
  4. Bake for 10-15 minutes until cookies lose their sheen. Allow to cool and set on the cookie sheets for 3-5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

NOTE: baking time will vary based on moisture content of the bananas and nut butter.

Slow Cooker Pot Roast (Soup)

This started out as a pot roast recipe, but the broth was so good, it really leant itself to a soup - so be it!

  • Small (approx 3 lb / 1.3 kg) lean beef roast (preferrably grass fed)
  • coconut, avocado or olive oil for seering, optional
  • 1 small onion, quartered
  • 6 - 8 large carrots, in large chucks
  • 3 - 4 celery stalks, in large chucks
  • 2 cups (500ml) beef broth or stock
  • 26 - 28 oz (750 g) diced tomatoes (I like Pomi tetra paks)
  • 1 - 2 garlic gloves
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 1 tsp sea salt (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

I like a nice brown coating on a roast, so I sear the beef in coconut oil in a heavy pan on the stovetop, turning each side until nicely browned. This is optional.

Place the onion, carrot and celery in the slow cooker and top with the seared beef. Add the broth, spices and tomatoes.  Cook on low for 7-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours, until the beef is tender and easily shreds. 

 

 

Nut- and Grain-free Zucchini Banana Bread

This is a modified version of my grain-free Zucchini Banana Bread, that is also nut-free for those allergic or sensitive to tree nuts. It's delicious for anyone!

  • 1 ½ cups (140 g) flax seed meal
  • 1 ½  teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • pinch of ground nutmeg
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
  • 1 cup (150 g) grated zucchini, water blotted out
  • 1/4 cup (40 g) raisins
  • 1/3 cup (45 g) pumpkin seeds, toasted

•    Optional: handful of chocolate chips or a tablespoon of cocoa nibs

1.    Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) and grease a muffin pan with coconut oil, or one large loaf pan.
2.    Combine the flax meal, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a medium bowl and set aside.
3.    Combine the eggs, honey, vanilla, banana and oil in another bowl. Mix well and add the dry ingredients. Mix until fully combined
4.    Fold in the zucchini, raisins, pumpkin seeds and chocolate chips or nibs if using. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tins, filling each tin 1/4 full, or into a loaf pan.
5.    Bake for 20 minutes or until golden and set (for a loaf bake for 30 - 35 minutes). Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.

Delicious toasted!

 

Quinoa, Sausage, Kale and Sweet Potato Skillet

Adapted from Penzey's Spices

Ingredients

2 sweet potatoes
2 TB. coconut oil
1 lb. sausage (I use pork sausage from my local farmer)
1 small onion
1 garlic clove, crushed (or 1/4 tsp. dry)
1/2 TB. fresh sage, chopped (or 1/2 tsp. dry)
1/2 tsp. paprika
bunch Tuscan kale, ribs removed and thinly sliced
2 Cups (2/3 cup or 75 g, uncooked - prepared per package instructions) cooked quinoa
1-2 TB. or your favorite spice blend, to taste. I use Penzey's Mural of Flavor, which contains shallots, onion, garlic, lemon peel, citric acid, chives and orange peel. Any blend will do.

Preheat oven to 400°F (205° C). Dice the sweet potatoes and place on a baking sheet on the and roast for about 25 minutes or until soft and tender. 

While the sweet potatoes roast, heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the coconut oil and heat until hot. Add the sausage, onion or shallots, garlic, sage and paprika. Cook, stirring frequently, until the sausage is crumbled and no longer pink. Stir in the kale, cover and cook until the kale starts to wilt, about 3 minutes. Add the sweet potatoes, cooked quinoa and spice blend. Cook for about 1 minute and then serve.

Southwest Quinoa Salad

Another totally flexible recipe! I made this up with what I thought sounded good. If there's something you don't like, skip it. Want to add something you do like? Go for it!

Often, this type of dish includes green onions and garlic - a delicious and healthy add - but my body can't handle raw alliums (a family that includes all types of onions and garlic).

For additional protein, excellent with diced chicken.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (170g) cooled quinoa (any color), prepared per package directions with water or broth (I often use veggie broth).  I typically make a big pot and use leftover quinoa for this dish.
  • 1 can black beans - drained and rinsed
  • 1 bell pepper, diced (I prefer red, orange or yellow)
  • 1 small cucumber, diced
  • Cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • Small avocado, diced
  • Cilantro, finely chopped

Dressing

  • Juice of 2 small or 1 large lime
  • 3 - 4 Tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper or to taste

Gently combine the quinoa, beans and vegetables in a large bowl.  Combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl, stirring well.  Add dressing to the quinoa blend, stir and serve.

So easy!