Nutella Peanut Butter Bites! NO Bake ♡

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_MG_0681Ok this took no time!  Only 5 ingredients and no baking. The peanut butter will provide a little bit of protein and the oatmeal will add some fiber.  And who doesn’t love nutella, right?  Let’s get stated!!  

Ingredients 

  • 1/2 cup oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup rice crispy cereal
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup nutella 
  • 1 Tb honey

Directions 

Mix dry ingredients, then mix in wet ingredients.  Use a little bit of coconut oil to grease your mixture and hands. Pull apart to form balls.  Place on baking sheet and place in freezer for 10 minutes until firm.  Keep stored in refrigerator. Enjoy!! 

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Buttermilk Blueberry Sorbet!! With Organic Coconut Sugar!

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_MG_0668Just 5 ingredients, this sorbet is a perfect summer treat to cool you off.  I found this Martha Stewart recipe to be a surprise success after having some leftover buttermilk from a scone recipe earlier in the week.  I substituted regular sugar for Organic Coconut Sugar.  I like organic coconut sugar because it has less of a crash then regular sugar.  I also do not have an ice cream maker so I had to make this the old fashion way, by stirring.  Let get started!    _MG_0667

All the Fixings 

  • 1 1/2 pints fresh blueberries (about 3 cups)
  • 1 cup organic coconut sugar – Trader Joe’s has this – (or regular sugar is fine too) 
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Finely grated zest of 1 large lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

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  1. Combine 3 cups of blueberries, and 1 cup of Organic Coconut Sugar in food processor or blender and blend.  _MG_0626
  2. Pour puree into sifter on top a mixing bowl and sift out seeds and stems.  You will have to stir and press the mixture to force it out of the sifter, also don’t forget to scoop the outside of the sifter basket:)   _MG_0640
  3. Add zest of one large lemon.  _MG_0642
  4. Add 1 Cup of butter milk and 1 tsp of vanilla extract._MG_0650_MG_0651 _MG_0656
  5. Whisk ingredients vigorously.  
  • If you have an ice cream maker then simply add mixture to the ice cream maker and follow the suggested directions.  
  • If you do not, then add mixture to a deep dish baking pan and place in freezer.   _MG_0661
  • Every 30 minutes take out sorbet and stir vigorously.  A hand held blender might do the trick too.  The purpose is to keep the sorbet from forming ice crystals and to have it as smooth and creamy as possible.  Keep stirring every 30 minutes for 2 hours or until sorbet is frozen.   

That’s it!  Scoop into serving dishes and enjoy!

Store in glass container in freezer.   _MG_0672

Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookies!

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Throw some chickpeas in your cookie recipe next time.  This recipe has actually been around for a while.  I got it from Jessica Seinfeld’s cook book on pureed vegetables in everyday cooking and baking.  If you notice the recipe calls for egg whites, omitting the yolks.  This is a great way to cut down on unwanted cholesterol.  Then adding chickpeas is the best part of this recipe, adding fiber and protein.  Hmmm! Yes Please!

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  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup light margarine (If you’re naughty like me I used real butter, there’s still a debate weather process fake butter is better for you than real butter, I tend to go for real foods, you decide 🙂
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups chocolate chips
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup walnuts 
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

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Directions

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a cookie sheet with baking spray.
  2. Beat sugar and margarine until smooth.
  3. Beat in egg whites and vanilla, then add chickpeas and chocolate chips. Add flour, oats, nuts, baking soda and salt.
  4. Drop by tablespoonful onto baking sheet.
  5. Bake 11 to 13 min, until golden brown.

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Happy Baking!!

 

Cold Brew Coffee for the Summer! You’ve gotta try this one!

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Imagine being able to wake up and pour a cup of cold brewed coffee with out all the mess … filter/k-cup, coffee grinder, cleaning out the old coffee and preparing the new, EVERYDAY.. UGH!  This Sunday you can prepare one big batch for the week and then it’s done.  And you will appreciate the taste of cold brew, rather then brewing hot coffee and cooling it off via refrigerator or watering it down with ice.  No thank you!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 containers large enough to hold at least 4 quarts of liquid, bigger the better, with a wide mouth
  • Strainer big enough to hook onto the sides of the container
  • Cheese cloth or paper towels
  • Big sealed pitcher with spigot
  • Ground premium coffee
  • Filtered water -spring water is the best

Here’s what I’ve figured out for coffee water ratio.  Of course play around with it to your own liking ☺

  • 8 quarts of water for 16 oz of ground premium coffee
  • 6 quarts of water for 12 oz of ground premium coffee
  • 4 quarts of water for 8 oz of ground premium coffee
  1.  Dump coffee into large container and measure out desired water amount.  Image2.  Add water to grounds.Image
  2. Cover and leave in refrigerator over night preferably 24 hours.  Image
  3. The next day position strainer over empty container and line with cheese cloth or paper towels.  Image

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6.  Dump coffee mixture over strainer and cheese cloth.  Press the grounds with a spatula to squeeze out all the extra coffee. ImageImage

7.   Then pour the final mixture into your pitcher, store in refrigerator and enjoy cold brewed coffee the rest of the week!  Image

Vegan Peanut Butter Balls!

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I usually have no defense when it comes to peanut butter and chocolate.  This delicious combo always wins, and I’m okay with that♡  The only tricky (vegan) part was finding REAL CHOCOLATE chips.  You will see a lot of Carob (chocolate substitute not real chocolate) which is fine I guess… but I wanted real chocolate.  I would suggest looking at Whole Foods.  These chocolate peanut butter balls are so amazing lets get right to it!

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  • Ingredients
  • 3 cups crispy brown rice cereal
  • 2 1/4 cups creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup or brown rice syrup
  • 1 (10 oz) bag semi-sweet vegan chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/4 cup whole peanuts
  • sea salt

Directions

– Place crispy brown rice cereal in a food processor and pulse until no large crispy chunks remain.

– In a small saucepan combine peanut butter, syrup and sea salt, mix well over low heat until well combined.Image– In a large mixing bowl combine peanut butter syrup and crispy brown rice cereal.  Mix well.  Form mixture into 1″ balls, placing on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. *tip* coat your hands in coconut oil to prevent mixture from sticking to your hands ☺Image

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– Place chocolate and almond milk in a double boiler (bowl sitting on top of smaller sauce pan) over low heat, whisk slowly until combined.  You might have to keep adding almond milk to keep this mixture runny. ImageImage

– Dip peanut butter balls into chocolate, covering completely, and return to baking sheet.Image– Sprinkle with salt and finely chopped peanuts.

– Place in refrigerator for at least 2 hours to set.   ImageImageImageEnjoy! Happy Baking!!

 

 

Organic Coconut Sugar Scones with Strawberries!

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_MG_0349Organic Coconut Sugar!  I stumbled upon this at Trader Joe’s by accident, of course I had to try it.  Apparently, Dr Oz endorses it as a healthier sugar substitute, I had no idea.  Check this clip out for the full story.  Coconut sugar causes less of a crash then regular white sugar.  The ratio is the same as regular white sugar.  The taste is delicious!  Try this recipe and see for yourself!

Makes 10-12 Scones small scones or 6 jumbo scones

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour – I used whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup organic coconut sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream or whole milk

Preheat oven to 375 F.

In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.

_MG_0279Make sure butter is extra chilled, maybe pop it into the freezer for a few minutes prior.  Cut butter into small chunks.  Blend the butter into the flour mixture with your finger-tips. The mixture should look like coarse crumbs, with chunks of butter the size of small peas.

_MG_0306Combine the ricotta cheese, heavy whipping cream, beaten egg and vanilla in a separate bowl.

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_MG_0305Add this mixture to the flour mixture.

_MG_0315Stir until just combined and fold in strawberries or any fruit you have.

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Knead dough gently on a floured surface two or three times. The more you touch the dough, the more the butter in it melts, causing it to become dense, so remember to apply a light touch!  Roll or pat the dough into one circle for jumbo scones or two circles for smaller scones.

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Then, using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into triangle slices. Place the scones on a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper, spacing a few inches apart.  Lastly, sprinkle a little extra sugar on top of scones before you bake them.

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Enjoy!  Happy Baking!!

 

 

Citrus Sugar Scrub with Grapefruit

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I absolutely love having a sugar scrub around the house. Its a great way to rejuvenate your dry flaky skin.  I almost forgot what healthy moisturized skin looks like!  This is easy to do living in the southwest  🙂_MG_0269_MG_0165 copyEvery year in Phoenix AZ, spring brings a delicious scent of blooming citrus trees.  Whether it’s a Myers lemon tree, a grapefruit tree, orange tree or a tangelo tree(which is a hybrid between a tangerine and a grapefruit) most neighbors, co-worker or family members are giving them away by the pound.

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Here’s a simple sugar scrub recipe easy to make and edible!  I love making bath and body products that are free of weird names and chemicals and everything in this recipe is from your kitchen!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh squeezed grapefruit juice-or any citrus you have
  • 3 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoon coconut oil (warmed up 30 seconds) you can also use grape seed oil, olive oil or sunflower oil
  • 2 tablespoon honey
  • few drops of any citrus  essential oil for scent (optional)

What you’ll need:

  1. Couple of Kerr jars or old jam jars cleaned and DE-labeled.  Here’s a brand I like, super affordable.
  2. Sifter for the seeds and pulp.
  3. Funnel for pouring scrub into jars.
  4. labels from any office supply store.

Directions

Position sifter over bowl and juice 1 cup grapefruit juice.

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Add sugar and mix remaining ingredients.

_MG_0191Funnel scrub into jars.

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_MG_0205Print labels and apply to jars, Viola!  Give this to friends any time of year and they will love you!

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Suggested use:

Stir before use, sugar scrub will separate between uses and it is important to re mix the ingredients before each use to enjoy the full wonderfulness of the scrub.

Apply in circular motion in shower or bath, then pat dry!  Otherwise you ‘ll rub off all that beautiful oil.  After your shower or bath you will not need lotion all day, it’s a miracle!  Remember, I live in the dessert:) I would recommend NOT using on your face because of the oil in the scrub could cause break outs.

The honey in the scrub should keep the mixture from rotting.  Sometimes water will find its way into the mixture and harden. It usually doesn’t affect the entire jar and only collects around the mouth of the jar, don’t panic just chip away with your fingers.   ENJOY!  Happy Crafting!!

 

Healthy Cookie Dough Bites

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OK, these cookie dough bites are the most amazing thing I have ever had!  The sunflower seeds pair so well with the chocolate and it’s good for you!  Sunflower seeds have anti-inflammatory benefits and are high in Vitamin E.  Did you know the magnesium in sunflower seeds can help calm nerves?

No baking involved, these delicious snacks are ready in about 45 minutes with refrigerator time.  You will need a coffee grinder to grind your raw sunflower seeds and your oatmeal.  I highly recommend the raw sunflower seeds, but you can also use cashews or any other nut flavor you like.

  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1/2 cup of ground raw sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup of ground oatmeal
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter – softened
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 table spoon of coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  1. Cream butter and sugar together.
  2. Add remaining ingredients mix all together.
  3. Roll into 1 inch balls.
  4. Refrigerate for 30 minutes you can also drizzle chocolate over top!
  5. Let stand for a few minutes before serving.  Enjoy!!!
  6. Store in refrigerator.

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VANILLA GRAPEFRUIT SCONES with a CITRUS GLAZE

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VANILLA GRAPEFRUIT WHOLE WHEAT SCONE

It’s grapefruit season and our grapefruit tree is full!  I’ll be baking, crafting and blogging about  grapefruit ingredients over the next few days so stay tuned.  First off this grapefruit extravaganza are these vanilla grapefruit scones with a citrus glaze.  I cut back the sugar in the dough to 1/3 cup since the glaze is full of sugar.  I am also baking scones exclusively with ricotta cheese now.  The grocery store was out of buttermilk last time I went shopping.  I took that as a sign and bought some whole milk ricotta cheese.  Enjoy and Happy Baking!

Makes 10-12 Scones small scones or 6 jumbo scones

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour – I used whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup whole milk ricotta
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • Zest from 1 large grapefruit

Grapefruit Glaze- Combine all ingredients and set aside until scones have cooled completely

  •  3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon milk or heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grapefruit juice

Preheat oven to 375 F. In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Blend the butter into the flour mixture with your finger-tips. The mixture should look like coarse crumbs, with chunks of butter the size of small peas. Combine the ricotta cheese and heavy whipping cream, zest, beaten egg and vanilla in a separate bowl. Add this mixture to the flour mixture. Stir until just combined.

Knead dough gently on a floured surface two or three times. The more you touch the dough, the more the butter in it melts, causing it to become dense, so remember to apply a light touch!  Roll or pat the dough into one circle for jumbo scones or two circles for smaller scones.  Then, using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into triangle slices. Place the scones on a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper, spacing a few inches apart.

Bake for about 13-16 minutes or until nicely browned. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.  Dip the top of the scone in the glaze and serve!

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CHOCOLATE COVER BLUEBERRY MUFFINS WITH OATMEAL AND FLAXMEAL

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These hearty muffins are nutritious with the right amount of sweetness.  The flax meal is loaded with omega 3 fatty acids and the oatmeal is rich in fiber.  Both can be a great addition to any pancake, bread or muffin recipe.  If you don’t want to make these recipes from scratch try adding a few table spoons to a pre made mix you already have in your pantry!

Makes 12

INGREDIENTS

For the muffins

  •                  1 cup rolled oats or old fashioned oatmeal
  •                   1/2 cup sour cream mixed with 2 table spoons of milk
  •                   3 tablespoons salted butter, melted
  •                   2 egg
  •                   2/3 cup brown sugar
  •                   1 teaspoon vanilla
  •                   1 cup + 2 tablespoon flour
  •                   2 heaping tablespoon ground flaxmeal
  •                   1 teaspoon baking powder
  •                   1 teaspoon baking soda
  •                   1/2 teaspoon salt
  •                   1 cup chocolate covered blue berries

For the crumbly topping and glaze

  •                   2 tablespoon cold butter, cut into small pieces
  •                   6 tablespoons flour
  •                   2 tablespoon brown sugar
  •                   1/2 cup powdered sugar
  •                   1 tablespoon milk

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place paper liners in muffin.
  2. Combine the oats and buttermilk in a mixing bowl. Let the oats soak for 15-20 minutes. Add the melted butter, egg, brown sugar, and vanilla. Stir by hand until just combined.
  3. Add the flour, flax meal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir again until evenly moistened.
  4. Gently fold the blueberries into the remaining batter and divide evenly between the muffin tins. Place 2-3 additional blueberries at the very top center of each muffin, just to make ‘em pretty.
  5.  For the crumbly topping, press the butter, flour, and brown sugar together with your fingers until fine crumbs form. Sprinkle one spoonful of crumbs over each muffin before baking.
  6. Bake muffins for 13-15 minutes, or until golden brown. While the muffins are cooling, stir the powdered sugar and milk together to make a glaze. Drizzle a little glaze over each muffin before serving. Happy Baking!