Baked Fried Chicken Tenders with Maple Dijon Dipping Sauce

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Boneless skinless chicken breast tenders were on sale today. Totally craving some chicken tenders comfort food. Here is what I came up with.

Ingredients
Chicken
1-2# boneless chicken breast tenders
2 eggs
Approx 2 cups Almond meal (with the skins)
1 Tbsp Grass-fed butter (melted)
S&P for a hint of flavor

Maple Dijon dipping sauce
Dijon mustard (check labels for sneaky sugar)
Real maple syrup

Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 425°.
2. Pour the almond flour into a bowl, season with s&p
3. In a separate bowl, mix together eggs and butter.
4. Dredge the chicken in egg/butter mixture then coat in almond meal.
5. Arrange the chicken in a single layer on a baking sheet or oven safe dish.
6. Bake at 425° for 60 minutes or until chicken is brown and crispy.
7. In the meantime, mix together maple dijon dipping sauce. I use a 2:1 ration. 2 parts mustard, 1 part maple syrup.
8. Once chicken is cooked, remove from oven, the juices should run clear when pierced with a knife. Let cool for a minute or 2. Serve with dipping sauce and enjoy.

There are a thousand recipes out out on the Internets similar to this one. From memory, I just kind of threw this together on my own.  Really, I just had the almond meal in my cupboard that I wanted to use up.  Figured this would be a good way.

I provided you with the basic version of these chicken tenders.  For a few of the chicken strips, I added some Italian seasoning to the almond meal mixture.  Once cooked, I dipped the chicken into marinara sauce.  Experiment with flavors and see what you can come up with.  One could make this recipe a plethora of different ways.  Garlic, rosemary, cayenne pepper, lemon, etc…

These chicken bits come out perfectly crispy.  At the temperature that I cooked them, they have just the right amount of crisp while keeping the chicken tender and juicy.  Pretty good combo.

Really, this is so easy…and cleanup is a breeze.  Easy, clean way to enjoy some chicken strips. It will save you time and will for sure be a hit.

Happy eating!

Paleo Pumpkin Pie

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Thanksgiving is one of my favorites.  Everyone gathered together, a table full of food, a heart of thankfulness.  Speaking of food….since deciding to eat clean, it has become a bit more difficult to partake in holiday meals.  Many traditional favorites are full of ingredients that I choose not to eat.  Lately, I have been keeping my eyes open for great Thanksgiving recipes. Cleaner options. So.many.recipes. Elana’s Pantry recently posted this pumpkin pie recipe.  Now, just so you know, I definitely prefer pie over cake and I’m somewhat of an aficionado. I do make a mean pumpkin pie…with my grandma’s secret pie crust recipe.  BUT, since my family pumpkin pie recipe isn’t so much Paleo, I thought I’d try my hand at this one.  Elana’s Pantry is good about posting fantastic recipes.  I was optimistic.

Ingredients

1 (15 oz ) can pumpkin puree (or 1.5 Cu homemade pumpkin puree)
3 eggs
1/2 Cu coconut milk (full fat)
1/3 cu honey
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg

Crust
2 Cu blanched almond flour
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 egg

Makes 1 pie crust
Recipe HERE

Instructions
Prepare the crust first
1. Place flour and salt in food processor and pulse briefly
2. Add coconut oil and egg.  Pulse until mixture forms a ball.
3. Press dough firmly into a 9-inch pie dish, set aside.
4. In a food processor, combine pumpkin puree and eggs.
5. Pour filling into Paleo Pie Crust
6. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes
7. Allow to cool completely then refrigerate for approx 2 hours to set up

Makes 1 pie

Topping
Heavy whipping cream
vanilla
cinnamon

I don’t have exact measurements.  I just pour and sprinkle and whip the crap out of it by hand.  Truly made with love.

Ever the skeptic, I was pleasantly surprised at how this pie turned out.  Really, it turned out perfectly.  Towards the end of baking, the crust was getting dangerously golden so I placed some tinfoil on top for the last 10 minutes or so.  Other than that, the recipe was relatively simple.  There are a handful of ingredients, but basically you just mix them together.  Nothing fancy.  I would make this pie again…and often.  It truly tastes like pumpkin pie.  The whipped topping really makes this pumpkin pie the perfect ending to your traditional Thanksgiving dinner.  Best part is, it’s guilt-free.  Grain-free, dairy-free, and the only sugar is the honey.

Try it out this Thanksgiving.  See if your dinner guests notice a difference.  I’d bet they won’t.  This would also be the perfect item to take along to that dinner party you’ve been invited to.  This way, you know EXACTLY what went into the pie and can enjoy a care-free dessert.  pairs well with coffee.

I hope you enjoy this pie as much as I do!

Happy Eating!

Recipe HERE.

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Pumpkin Spice Donuts with Maple Almond Butter Glaze

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Taylor, of Taylor Made It Paleo, posted this recipe early September.  I had never made donuts before.  I suppose I always thought of donuts as fried. I have seen Paleo donut recipes here and there, but this one really caught my eye.  Really, all things delicious. A perfect night for some sweet pumpkiny rings.

Ingredients

For the donuts:
2 eggs
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 tbsp coconut oil (melted)
2 tbsp almond butter
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp almond flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp sea salt

For the glaze:
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp almond butter
1/2 tbsp honey
1/2 tbsp coconut oil (softened, but not melted)

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Grease donut pan with coconut oil (I used a mini donut pan, but a regular one would work fine, just increase baking time).
3. Combine all donut ingredients in a food processor (or mixing bowl) until a smooth batter forms and all are well incorporated.
4. Spoon batter into donut pan, filling a little more than 3/4 of each hole.
5. Bake for 15 minutes.
6. While donuts are baking, prepare your glaze by whisking all ingredients together in a small bowl until coconut oil is completely incorporated and the mixture is smooth.
7. When done, remove donuts from oven and allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes, then remove and cool on wire rack completely.
8. Once completely cool, dip the top of each donut into the glaze.
9. Enjoy!

(makes 1 dozen)

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I picked up a couple donut pans today at the Bed, Bath, and Beyond for only $9 each. This recipe was simple enough.  Mix all ingredients, pour in pan, bake.  In the meantime, mix the glaze.  Really pretty tough to mess up.  As the donuts were baking, I thought they smelled delightful.  My husband even commented “mmm…smells like pumpkin donuts.”  Once out of the oven, I let them cool, then glazed them.  I couldn’t wait until they were entirely cooled.  I was eager to give them a try.  The donuts were the prefect texture and consistency. Perfectly fluffy and cake-like.  The flavor was great as well. They taste like fall.  A perfect combination of pumpkin, spices, and sweetness. Husband loved them too.  Totally approved.  The glaze was just “icing on the cake.”  The almond butter, maple syrup, and honey combination is delicious.  Just a little bit of sweet to the pumpkin cake donut.

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This was a HUGE hit in our house.  I think we ate half of the batch.  Best part is, they’re guilt-free.  You can’t say the same for those grocery store brand glazed donut balls that my husband is fond of.  These are grain-free, dairy-free, gluten-free, and free of processed sugar.  Definitely a win.

Happy Eating!

Original recipe HERE.

 

Paleo Browned Butter Snickerdroodles

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I’ve tried to limit my posting of desserts, but every once in a while, I can’t resist.

I found this recipe on the Clean Eating With a Dirty Mind blog.  Tons of Paleo goodness. Main courses to snacks.  Sweet to savory.  Check it out when you have a chance. 

I’m a big fan of snickerdoodles.  Huge fan.  Really, with a name like Browned Butter Snickerdroodles, I just had to try it.  And here it is.

Makes approx 2 dozen

Ingredients

Dough
1 & 1/2 cups Almond Flour
1/4 cup Coconut Flour
1/4 cup Coconut Crystals (coconut sugar)
2 tsp. Cream of Tartar
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1/4 tsp. Salt
1 cup Kerrygold Grass-Fed Butter Browned (1 block)
1  Egg
1/4 cup Honey
1 Tbs. Canned Coconut Milk, Full-Fat
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1/2 tsp. Apple Cider Vinegar

Rolling Mixture
1/4 cup Coconut Crystals
2 tsp. Cinnamon

Parchment paper

Directions

1. In a large bowl whisk together the almond flour, coconut flour, coconut crystals, cream of tartar, baking soda, 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon and salt, set aside

2. Brown the cup of Kerrygold Grass-Fed butter. Put the butter in a sauce pan and continue to whisk consistently over medium heat until the butter boils then turns brown and starts to give off a toffee like aroma. Immediately remove from heat so it doesn’t burn. Set aside and let cool. (I ended up putting the browned butter in the fridge to speed up the cooling.

3. In a separate bowl add the egg, raw honey, coconut milk, vanilla, and apple cider vinegar. Stir until combined. After the browned butter has cooled (you don’t want to cook the egg on accident because the butter is still too hot) stir it into this mixture.

4. Now pour the wet mixture in to the dry ingredients and stir until well combined. At this point you will have a dough that has a consistency similar to cake batter. Refrigerate the dough for 2-3 hours. It will harden and thicken up. You can even throw it in the freezer for a bit. Do not skip this step, I promise it will be worth it!  It makes the dough rolling much easier.

5. Prepare your rolling mixture in a small bowl.

6. After your dough has hardened, preheat the oven to 350 F and line a baking shcookies1eet with parchment paper, very important!  Grab a piece of dough and roll it in a ball, then roll it into the coconut crystal/cinnamon rolling mixture and place on the baking sheet. Lightly press the end of your palm into the dough to flatten it a tiny bit, don’t press too hard, you only want a slight indentation. The cookies will spread a bit while baking.

7.  Bake for 10-12 minutes, then let cool. I let mine cool on the baking tray because when I tried to transfer them to the cooling rack they were so soft they fell apart, but after they cooled on the tray they solidified and became easily moveable. Enjoy!

I was quite pleased with how these turned out.  I made them at the firehouse, and they were a huge success.  They really are a Paleo snickerdoodle.  I imagine they pair perfectly with a cup of coffe.  If it wasn’t 8:00 at night and if caffeine didn’t have an effect on me, I would confirm that hypothesis. I must warn you, these are dangerous.  As Vanessa, the recipe’s author, writes, “this recipe is outstanding.”  I second that.

Instead of baking up a batch of your typical full of grain, full of dairy, full of sugar cookies, try these out on the family.  Sure to be a hit.  Bet they won’t know it’s Paleo.

Happy eating!

Recipe found HERE.

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More Paleo Pancakes

I.love.pancakes.

I combined a couple different recipes to make this batch. I also doubled the batch because I was feeling pretty hungry and I like to have leftovers for work.

Ok, here’s what we’re working with:

2 OVERLY ripe bananas
4 farm fresh free range eggs
About 1 cup almond butter
About 1 tsp cinnamon
About 1 tsp baking powder
About 1.5 tsp vanilla

After mixing up this business thoroughly, the batter was looking pretty thin so I added maybe 1/4 cup almond flour. That seemed to do the trick. Play around a little with measurements. It’s pretty tough to mess this one up.

I used a 1/4 cup measuring cup to drop the batter onto the griddle. I also added a few dark chocolate chips to a few of the pancakes just for fun.

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In the past, I’ve also added blueberries, protein powder, and flax seed. One could also add a little sweet potato,  pumpkin, or apple for some extra POW.

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I love this recipe. One of my favorite recipes for my day off. Also pairs well with a hot cup of coffee. I dig it.

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Chicken Pot Pie

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I have had this recipe in my stack of “things to make” for awhile now. Today was the day to conquer it.

You make this recipe in a few different steps. Ingredients below.

Almond flour/meal (a lot of it)
Salt
Baking powder
Coconut oil
Water
Chicken breasts
Yellow onion
Frozen peas
Frozen carrots
Coconut milk (full fat)
Chicken stock
Extra virgin olive oil
Pepper
Egg

You start out by roasting the chicken with a little EVOO, salt, and pepper for about a half hour. In the meantime, you make the crust. Blend together the almond flour, baking powder, and salt in a food processor. Then add the coconut oil, then the water. I keep my almond flour in the freezer. If you do the same, I recommend letting your flour become room temperature first otherwise your coconut oil will solidify, making it tricky to get the crust right. Once the crust is made, form it into a ball, wrap it in plastic wrap, and put it in the fridge.

While the chicken is cooking and the crust chills, you begin working in the filling.  On a sidenote, this is about the time the chicken was done. Take those babies out and let them cool. Next, cook the onions in some EVOO. When they start turning brown, add the almond flour and reduce heat. Add the chicken stock, coconut milk, salt, and pepper.  After a quick stir, add the peas, carrots, and chicken. 

At this time, take the crust out of the fridge. I pretended it was a pie crust and placed the crust ball between 2 sheets of wax paper before rolling it out. My crust was pretty gooey, so I had to put it back into the fridge often while rolling it out and shaping it.  To shape it, I made outlines in the crust with the ramekins.

Next, spoon the filling into the ramekins. The recipe calls for 8 ramekins. I used 4 ramekins and put the rest of the filling into an 8×8 Pyrex pan. It worked out perfectly. Once the filling is dished up, place the crust circles on top of the ramekins. I placed the ramekins and 8×8 onto a baking sheet. This makes it easier to remove from the oven as well as catches the juices that overflow out of the baking dishes. Cook these babies for about an hour.

The pot pies come out LAVA hot, so let them sit for a bit before diving in. I was pleasantly surprised at how flaky the crust was. Delicious. These paleo pot pies taste like the real deal. They take a little time to make, but are most definitely worth it.  This one’s a keeper.

Another quick sidenote. Are peas Paleo? Technically, no.  They are a part of the legume family, along with green beans.  The reasoning behind it has to do with lectin and a high glycemic index which I will explain in more detail another day.  I agree with the author of the recipe in that it’s not chicken pot pie without the peas, so I decided to go for it. Part of my 10-15% modified Paleo.

Happy eating!

Recipe found HERE.

Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Bars

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I know that I make A LOT of Paleo desserts, but I’m also good at sharing with husband, friends, coworkers. Keep in mind that sweets should be consumed sparingly.

I thought this one looked delicious. Dulce de Leche is essentially “milk candy” which in its simplest way can be made by boiling a can of sweetened condensed milk, becoming caramel. The author of this one found a recipe for Paleo-free Dulce de Leche cheesecake bars on Smitten Kitten’s site and revamped the recipe to be Paleo.  Before I started eating clean, I LOVED Smitten Kitten’s site.  I was pleasantly surprised to find a Paleo version of one of her recipes.   

This recipe is for dulce de leche cheesecake bars. You make Paleo graham cracker crust, then Paleo caramel, then Paleo cheesecake, then chocolate ganache for the top.  This takes time.  Mixing, baking, cooling, mixing, pouring, cooling…..

 

 

IMAG2582Graham cracker crust:
almond flour
coconut flour
salt
baking soda
baking powder
cinnamon
honey
egg
vanilla

Dulce de Leche sauce:
coconut milk
honey
vanilla

 
Cheesecake:
cashews
coconut oil
honey
lemon juice
coconut milk
vanilla
salt

 
Chocolate Ganache:
dark chocolate
coconut milk

 

IMAG2588You mix the graham cracker ingredients, bake, then cool.  This is pretty delicious.  It smells wonderful.  While the graham cracker crust is cooling (or even while it is baking), mix the ingredients for the Dulce de Leche sauce in a pan.  Boil until it reduces to half and becomes golden and syrupy. Allow this to cool until it becomes thick and creamy.  Pour over the graham cracker crust then put back into the fridge/freezer.  Next, the cheesecake.  Apparantly, cashews are how vegans make cheesecake.  With this recipe, add everything into the food processor and mix until it becomes thick and creamy.  I was intrigued by how this would taste, and was pleasantly surprised at how delicious this was.  Once this is mixed, pour the cheesecake over your graham cracker/dulce de leche bars.  Back into the fridge/freezer it goes.  Finally, mix the last 2 ingredients.  Once the chocolate is melted, pour over the top of the bars. The hardest part is allowing the bars to cool for a few hours.  Trust me, this is important if you want it to come out in bar form.  On the flip side, the best part is licking the spoon for each layer. 

I really enjoyed the flavor layers of this dessert.  The graham cracker, the sweetness of the dulce de leche, the complexity of the cheesecake, the chocolate.  It’s fun.  I hope you enjoy this one.

Recipe HERE.