Flourless Almond Butter Bars

 

 

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These bars.  I made these awhile ago then lost the recipe.  No worries.  I found it again! 1. They’re easy to make.  2. They’re stupid good.  I brought a pan of these guys to my gym this morning.  I think they loved them.  Here is what you need to know:

Ingredients
2 Cu almond butter (the original recipe calls for peanut butter, but I subbed almond butter for PB)
3/4 Cu honey
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

Instructions
Mix together with a fork, then bake  in a 9×13 at 300 F for 25 minutes, or until the edges start to turn golden brown.

That’s it! Done and done.  These are made without flour, which made me skeptical, but they ended up moist and cake-like.  Perfect, really.  You’ll never know they’re gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, and Paleo.

Make them.  I promise you won’t be disappointed.  I also recommend keeping them in the fridge for really only one reason: so that you won’t eat the entire pan in one sitting.

Happy eating!

Original recipe here.

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Stuffed Acorn Squash

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Tis the season for squash.  So many options.  I love it!  While perusing through the Delicously Organic site, I happened upon this recipe. I was drawn in by the picture, intrigued by the ingredients. Here’s the info.

Ingredients
Squash
2 acorn squash, cut in half pole-to-pole, seeds removed
1 tablespoons ghee, melted (click here for an easy homemade recipe)
1 tablespoon honey
Celtic sea salt

Filling

4 tablespoons ghee
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
2 cups “riced” cauliflower*
2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
1/3 cup pecans
1/4 cup plumped raisins**
1/2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 450ºF. Adjust rack to middle position.
2. Place squash, cut-side up, on a baking sheet.
3. Combine ghee and honey then brush the squash with the mixture using a pastry brush.
4. Season with sea salt.
5. Roast in the oven for 25 minutes.
6. Meanwhile, melt 4 tablespoons ghee in a large sauté pan and swirl to coat.
7. Add onion and celery then cook, stirring frequently, for 5-7 minutes until soft.
8. Stir in cauliflower and cook for 3-4 minutes until hot.
9. Stir in thyme, pecans, raisins, sea salt and pepper.
10. Spoon filling into acorn squash and roast for 20 minutes. Serve.

 

*To rice cauliflower: Cut cauliflower into bite-size pieces and place half of the pieces in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse 12-15 times until cauliflower is the size of rice. Repeat. As an alternative, you can grate the cauliflower with a cheese grater or chop finely with a large chef’s knife.

 

**To plump raisins: Place raisins and 1/4 cup juice (orange, apple, even kombucha works!) in a small saucepan. Bring to a low simmer. Turn off heat. Using a slotted spoon, remove raisins.

 A couple things.  I used butter instead of ghee.  I was at work, hungry, and afraid I would get called out while making it.  For time’s sake, I chose to use the regular grass-fed butter.  Also, I used apple juice to plump the raisins.  Good choice on my part.  Thirdly, I couldn’t find a grater at work, so I ended up finely chopping the cauliflower.  That worked just fine. 

I was thoroughly impressed with this dish.  I planned on having it as a side, but ended up actually eating it for dinner.  It’s filling and super tasty.  I couldn’t get enough!  It tastes like Thanksgiving stuffing.  The flavors are perfectly savory with just a subtle hint of sweet.  The crispy filling compliments the soft squash really well.  The flavors just layer perfectly.  This would be a great side for a family get-together or a warm the soul kind of dish for a cozy night at home. 

Happy eating!

Recipe HERE

Chia Seed Pudding

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Chia seeds.  Packed with a big nutritional punch in a tinylittleseed.  Chia seeds are interesting little buggers.  When dry, they look kind of like a poppy seed.  When moisture is added, it basically turns into a gelatinous orb. It has been debated that these seeds can help curb hunger.  I guess my take on it is that since the seed sort of expands, it helps you to feel more full. In addition to maybe curbing hunger, these seeds are pretty good for you.  Fiber, protein, calcium, antioxidants, and omega-3.  All of that in these tinylittleseeds. 

I typically use Chia seeds when I make shakes and smoothies.  I’m always looking for other uses for these funky little seeds.  Recently, I came across this pudding recipe on the Deliciously Organic site.  Sounds pretty delicious.

Ingredients
1-1/2 Cups full fat coconut milk
4 Tbsp real maple syrup (or honey)
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract (optional)
1/3 cup chia seeds
1/2 cup fresh berries

Instructions
1. Whisk coconut milk, maple syrup, and extracts until smooth. 
2. Stir in chia seeds
3. Divide mixture evenly between 4 glasses.
4. Let sit at room temperature for 2 hours.
5. Serve

Note: If you’d like to make the pudding ahead of time, cover tightly and chill in the refrigerator.  Set pudding out for 15 minutes before serving.  Best if eaten within 24 hours.

I found this recipe a couple of days ago, printed it off, and set it on my counter.  This morning, before work, I quick whipped up a batch to throw in my lunch bag.  I altered it just slightly due to time.  I had about a half a can of coconut milk and added almond milk to make the 1-1/2 cups. I was out of maple syrup so I used honey.  I didn’t have any almond extract so I left that stuff out as well.  I had my blender out, so I threw it all into the blender and gave it whirl.  Once mixed, I poured the pudding into mason jars and put them in my lunch bag for work. 

Around lunchtime (about 6 hours after making the pudding), I tried this stuff out.  I added fresh raspberries to make it pretty.  This stuff is pretty fantastic.  As my medic partner so eloquently put it, “It looks reptilian!”  The seeds do give it a funky look and texture, but that’s alright.  The flavor makes up for it.  It totally reminded me of tapioca pudding.  Subtly sweet, a hint of vanilla, and packed with healthy goodness. 

I WILL be making this again.  I foresee having this stuff on hand often to have as dessert.  Perfect.

Happy eating!

Recipe HERE. Also listed is a chocolate version. I plan to make that one next time. I have fond memories of warm tapioca pudding with chocolate chips.  Ahh, memories.

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Paleo Cinnamon Bun In a Mug

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It seems like at least once or twice a day I see a “mug cake” recipe.  The directions are simple: mix, microwave, eat.  The ingredients, well, while they may be simple, they aren’t clean in the least bit.  They vary from pudding mix to cake mix to sugar to regular flour.  When South Beach Primal posted this recipe on the Facebook, I knew I just had to try it.  A cleaner version to all of those mug recipes. Yeah, I’m down.

Ingredients
Cinnamon Bun
2 tbsp coconut flour
1 tsp cinnamon
Dash salt
Dash nutmeg
½ tsp baking powder
1 egg
2 tbsp almond milk (unsweetened)
1 ½ tbsp raw honey
½ tsp vanilla extract

Icing
1 tbsp coconut butter (THIS is the kind that I buy in the store)
1 tbsp almond milk (unsweetened)
1 tsp raw honey
1/2 tsp lemon juice

Instructions
1. Mix all of the cinnamon cake ingredients in a coffee mug, mixing in the baking powder last.
2. Microwave for 2 minutes.
3. Mix all of the icing ingredients in a small bowl, drizzling over the hot mug cake.
4. Inhale immediately

Ri-dic-u-lous-ly easy.  Cinnamon bun with icing…in a mug.  I’m sold.  This could be dangerous.  Delicious flavor.  The icing really adds a lot.  Flavor AND a little moisture.  One of the best parts is the clean up.  A lot of my friends who eat the mug cakes complain that the cake is a bugger to clean out of the mug once the cake is gone.  With this one, that’s not an issue in the least bit.  You could totally lick the mug clean.  Also, I’ve had a few people ask me what’s so special about coconut butter….and could one substitute regular butter for the coconut butter?  In my opinion, coconut butter is creamier. It also has just a hint of flavor.  To be honest, I don’t know how this recipe would turn out with regular butter.  If you make it, let me know. I just know how tasty it is with the coconut butter. I would guess that the flavor would not be as rich with the regular butter.

In short, this is a pretty fantastic single serving cinnamon bun.  Mix, microwave, masticate.  I HIGHLY recommend checking it out.
Happy Eating!

Recipe HERE. While you’re at it, take a gander around South Beach Primal’s webpage.  Tons of good stuff!

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Slow Cooker Cranberry Sauce

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I’m a sucker for cranberry sauce.  A Thanksgiving staple that can easily be forgotten.  I guess I grew up having the canned cranberry sauce…didn’t know any better.  This year I decided to try something a little different.  The ingredient list just screamed FLAVOR!  I was all about it.  Here is what you need to know:

Ingredients
One 14 ounce bag of cranberries
One medium Bartlett pear, cored and diced smaller than the cranberries
Juice and zest of one medium orange
One tablespoon of freshly grated ginger
1/4 cup raw honey
1/4 cup coconut sap crystals/coconut sugar

Instructions
1. Wash your cranberries (turns out, cranberries are pretty dirty). Strain excess water off before dumping into your slow cooker.
2. Add your pear, orange juice, orange zest, and ginger. Stir.
3. Add your honey and coconut crystals. Try your best to stir evenly. If clumps form, set them towards the top.
4. Leave your lid slightly cracked to allow excess moisture to cook off, which will provide a thicker sauce.
5. Cook on high for 3 hours or low for 5 hours. If doubling the recipe, cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours.

The only thing that I changed was the ginger…accidentally.  I read tsp vs Tbsp so I did not buy enough ginger.  Otherwise, the recipe was followed to a T.  I have so much to say about this recipe, but to keep this post short, let me summarize my thoughts with bullet points.

1. This cranberry sauce made my house smell A-MAY-ZING.  After throwing this together in the slow cooker, my husband and I left for a bit to run some errands. When we got back, my house smelled like Christmas.  It was an olfactory delight. Way better than a candle. 
2. This is THE best cranberry sauce that I have ever had. The cranberry.  The orange.  The pear.  The ginger. Wow.  Just…wow.  It’s a perfect punch of flavor.  Everything goes together really well.  Great layering. 
3.  I visited with Jason, the guy behind PaleoPot , a little about this recipe.  We talked about the pears.  Pears aren’t typically found in your traditional cranberry sauce.  The purpose for pears is twofold.  A. The pears add sweetness.  Sure, honey and coconut crystals add sugar, but really, nothing beats that natural sugar that you get from fruit.  B. Pears have pectin.  Pectin is a thickener.  Nature’s thickening agent.  Boom!
4.  Next time, I would double the receipe. I can’t get enough.  This recipe made about 2 cups, give or take.  Not nearly enough for those of us who pile on the cranberry sauce.
5. Only a handful of ingredients.  The only prep “work” really is with the orange and the ginger.  With a sharp microplane, it takes no time at all.  Quick and simple.

In short, this recipe is a huge win.  This WILL be made again (and again and again and again).  Thanks, Jason from PaleoPot, for making our turkey better, for making our house smell like cranberry spice, and for a more colorful Thanksgiving table this year. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Recipe HERE.

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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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Slow Cooker Baked Apples

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I came across this recipe the other day. I was at work and was looking for a delicious dessert to complete our perfectly Paleo dinner. I had previously posted a winner of a recipe on my blog, but I’m always looking for more recipes. I came across this one on the Health, Home, & Happiness website.

Ingredients
6 medium to large green apples
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup honey
1 tsp cinnamon
6 Tbsp coconut oil, butter, or ghee

Instructions
1. Core apples. To core, using an apple corer or paring knife, cut around the core (about 1/4 inch from the stem all the way around), but leave about half an inch at the bottom. Use the knife (I used a large spoon) to “drill out” the core.
2. Divide raisins, honey, cinnamon, and fat among the apples.
3. Place apples in a crock pot and add 1/2 inch of water.
4. Cook on low overnight and enjoy a hot breakfast in the morning.
5. (Optional) Alternatively, bake covered at 350°F in a glass fish for 45 minutes-1 hour.
6. To with heavy whipping cream, coconut milk, or just eat plain.

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I love this recipe for many reasons. 1. It’s simple. 5 ingredients. That’s it. Most people have all of these ingredients in the pantry already. No extra trips to the store. 2. There is a slow cooker option. I do love crock potified recipes. Throw it in, forget about it, come back later to something delicious. 3. It’s a healthy sweet treat. The honey could easily be substituted to make it even cleaner.

I opted to go the glass dish route. Also, my fat of choice was Kerrygold grass-fed butter. These babies made the fire station kitchen smell all sorts of delicious.  I typically use red apples, the kind you get from a local apple orchard. This time, I opted to stick to the recipe and use the Granny Smith. Delicious. The raisins were plump, the taste was perfectly sweet, and when the apples were served, they were dripping with buttery goodness.

Another recipe win. This recipe is firefighter approved. Perhaps next time I will try the slow cooker option.

Happy eating!

Original recipe HERE.

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