Categories
Breads and Muffins

Flourless Banana, Blueberry Chocolate Muffins

Paige is like me; a chocoholic.  I could probably add chocolate to anything, and she’d eat it.  The color of these muffins threw her off a bit at first, since…well…they are sort of ugly, but when I told her they were dark because they contain chocolate, she dove right in.  I’ve been making these for a while but only just recently started adding blueberries. Sometimes I use peanut butter and other times I use Sunbutter.  If you aren’t allowed to pack peanut butter at your child’s school, Sunbutter is a great replacement.  Paige doesn’t like Sunbutter but she doesn’t even know I use it for these muffins!Paige, hold up the muffin and smile!Paige, take a bite of the muffin and smile!

Flourless Banana, Blueberry Chocolate Muffins

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups natural, smooth peanut butter (or Sunbutter or almond butter)
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 1½ cups pureed banana (about 2 whole bananas)
  • 4 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips
  • ¼ cup fresh blueberries

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a muffin tray with cooking spray (or line with muffin liners).
  2. In a large bowl, combine eggs, nut/seed butter, maple syrup, banana, cocoa powder, baking soda and vanilla. Whisk together until smooth.
  3. Fold in the chocolate chips and blueberries.
  4. Fill the muffin tins to about ¾ full (and note, you will likely have enough to make about four more in another muffin tin)
  5. Bake 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Notes

This is a low FODMAP recipe!

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 1/16 of recipe Calories: 250 Fat: 17.5 g Carbohydrates: 18.5 g Sugar: 12 g Fiber: 3 g Protein: 9.5 g Easy recipe, gluten free, low FODMAPs and relatively low in sugar.  Not to mention they contain a good source of fiber.  You know, muffins aren’t generally the healthiest snack, but when you add some fruit and nuts/seeds to the mix, bam!  They are a better choice for you and your littles.  Even Cameron wanted more.

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Is Three the New Two?

There is nothing I hate more than when people warn you about things to come with your child.  For example,

“How old is Paige now?”

“She’s two”

“Oh boy, just wait, threes were the worst year for us!”

Honestly I hear things like this all the time.  When she was a baby it was “just wait until she starts walking, it’s a nightmare!”. No matter what, the next milestone is “bad” for some reason or another. Can’t we just be positive?!  Being a parent is hard enough as it is, I’d like to focus on the positives please.  Let’s practice; “three years old?! What a great time!  They can talk and have full conversations with you.  They can pee and poop on their own, without your help! They even learn how to actually wipe their bums appropriately.  They also start preschool and start developing friendships…how exciting!”.Yes, more positive vibes, please.

So, yes, Paige turned three …

Last year I made an Elmo cake, this year I attempted to make cool Trolls cupcakes.

The theme was Trolls, because that’s (for now) her favorite movie. Mainly, she likes the songs. In fact, I would say she’s obsessed.  Her first day of preschool ended with a note to all the parents, in which they pointed out the following;

**** The music playing during snack this afternoon was “Can’t Stop the Feeling” from Trolls. Paige said. “Can you pause this song?” Mary Beth said, “Why?” She replied “Well..If I am eating.. I can’t dance!!” *****

Here are some things were struggled (struggle still) with over the past year

  • We moved into my Mother in Law’s house, then moved into a new home.  This was a huge transition for all of us, but it especially effected Paige, who, like most toddlers, doesn’t do well with transitions.
  • Adenoids and runny noses and vomiting. Paige has, since birth, had a runny nose.  We had her adenoids removed late last year and things have gotten better.  However, since having her adenoids removed, she has had issues with throwing up. Since moving into our new home (right after having her adenoids removed) she has throw up on about ten different occasions.  Three of those times were from an illness, the others?  Well, we recently found out via an upper GI series that she has bad GERD.  We now have her on Xantac, which will reduce the acid and possible esophageal erosion, but will not reduce the throwing up. Our doctor said she has to grow out of it (and most kids grow out of it by age 1, not Paige!).
  • Paige was a late talker. Or at least according to the internet she was.  When you read the internet it makes you think if they aren’t talking in sentences by age 2 you have a serious problem on your hands.  So, we brought her to a speech therapist who told us she did in fact have a mild speech delay (so, the internet was right). After five months of 30-minute sessions per week therapy (yes, that’s it!) she’s currently talking at a level of, I would say, a five year old (I’m not kidding folks, speech therapy is good stuff!)
  • Tantrums escalated. The girl is strong willed, to the max degree. My mom says I was strong willed (and still am) but that Paige is even more so.  Literally I cringe when I have to say “no” because I know what’s coming. I will not turn into that parent who doesn’t say no because I’m afraid of how my child will act. I will continue saying NO until she understands that she isn’t the boss of me!
  • Paige is active and literally never stops.  I know what you’re thinking; what toddler ever stops?!  Well, both her babysitter and her new preschool teachers have pointed out that Paige literally hops form one thing to another.  She is just a busy body and is truly excited about life. This is great, but it makes for exhausted parents and caregivers!
  • Bedtime started becoming more difficult. Cameron falls asleep at the drop of a hat. It’s 8pm, I put him in his bed, he goes to sleep. Paige used to be the same way.  That is, until she turned two. Now, bedtime is a 1-2 hour ordeal and it’s just not fun.

Here are some things that were great over the past year;

  • Paige found her voice. While this has been both good and bad, it’s mainly been good, because we can finally communicate with her.
  • I had another baby and it couldn’t have gone more smoothly.  You know how I said Paige hates transitions? Well, she absolutely did not get bothered one bit by the addition of a new baby/human being into her life. We are beyond thankful for this.
  • Paige potty trained like a freaking champ. I mean, in two days, she was good to go. Ok, so she still wears a pull up to bed, we havne’t tackled that quite yet, but it’s dry 99% of the time (I think we do that for our own greedy benefit!)
  • She’s gaining her independence. She can literally do so a many things on her own and with a 6 month old at home, this makes mommy and daddy’s life much easier!  Of course, sometimes she’s too independent and gets mad when she doesn’t allow us to do things “all by herself”.

Here are some things that are coming up in the next year (will they go well?!)

  • Starting preschool. Yep, she started preschool this week. So far so good, but the teachers have already mentioned that they are working with her on patience and communicating without crying.
  • Cameron will start needing our attention more. Let’s face it, babies need a lot of attention, but they need even more attention when they start crawling and walking!  Not sure how Paige will handle this.
  • My husband is starting a new job, which means more hours (probably) and therefore I may be a little frazzled and our schedules will be a little off.
  • No more naps.Yeah, I said it here, I think we are fazing out of naps.  I hope this ends up being a good thing; I think it will.  Paige basically doesn’t nap for me or Nick anymore, but she does at her daycare.  I’m thinking since we have so much trouble putting her to sleep at night, taking naps out completely is probably best. ahhhh!

So, I’ve got a three year old now.   I’m not expecting everything to be easy and graceful, but I’m hoping to make the best out of things and enjoy this time as much as possible!  I know there will be a day that I look back and wish that Paige was a toddler again.  After all, she loves me, asks for me all the time, sings and dances with me, reads with me, plays with me, and doesn’t (yet) get annoyed with me. What more could I ask for?!

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Flourless Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins and Tips for Lactation (yes, all in one post!)

Who says I can’t make everything with pumpkin, even in April??  We always have a can of pumpkin in our cupboard, throughout the year, because I love using it as a fat substitute in recipes (similar to how you would with applesauce) and because it’s the one vegetable that Paige will eat one hundred percent of the time (I try to get her to mix it into her oatmeal and be cool like me, but she’s a two year old who just doesn’t understand the idea of food combining.  Weirdo.)

So as you may know I’m breastfeeding these days, and plan to at least until February 2018 (good God, writing that out seems very daunting).  While I have always been blessed with plenty of milk, I do believe part of that part of the reason I’m such a “milk goddess” is because my diet is made up of many of the foods that are said to promote lactation.  Mainly; oatmeal, carrots, pumpkin and nuts. These foods make up a large part of my diet!  Also, beer (I really don’t think this is an old wives tale.  I once had a healthcare professional tell me to sit in silence with my pump and a beer and massage a clogged duct I had that was really deep in my left breast.  I did this, and it worked).  When I drink beer I swear I can actually feel my milk supply increasing.  I kid you not.  Another thing that I do to help with my milk supply?  I love the lactation teas (the cookies are a rip off), and I always aim for 2200 calories (my normal intake is about 1600-1700, but I aim for about 500 more calories when I’m breastfeeding).

Even if you’re not breastfeeding, you’ll probably enjoy these quick and delicious muffins.  I make a double batch and freeze them for quick breakfasts or snacks, and for portable snacks and quick breakfasts (or dinners sometimes!) for Paige.  They are tasty alone, or with a dab or two of butter.  Enjoy!

5.0 from 1 reviews

Flourless Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

Ingredients

  • ½ cup pureed pumpkin (unsweeenedt) **
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk or soy milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 cups old fashioned oats
  • ⅓ cup dark chocolate chips (mini chips work best)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl combine the pumpkin and milk, mix with a spoon until smooth.
  2. Add eggs, vanilla, baking powder and oats. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  3. Spoon into muffin pan and bake for about 14 minutes. You can also use mini muffin pans and cook for about 13 minutes.

Notes

** If you are following a low FODMAP diet, this muffin is completely safe for you! Pumpkin does have FODMAPs but the amount in this recipe shouldn’t cause problems.

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 1 muffin Calories: 120 Fat: 4.5g Carbohydrates: 18g Sugar: 4g Fiber: 3g Protein: 4g

 CHEEKS!

I’ll be back soon!  Enjoy your day.

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Simple Strawberry Chia Jam

I’ve been meaning to make chia jam since…..two years ago when I first heard about it.  I figured it would be a laborious task, but when I typed “simple chia jam” into Google I got quite the plethora of options!  The one I chose was perfect. I tried it once with strawberries and then actually tried a blueberry jam too. Both were delicious.  Ask Paige….

Paige loved the jam. But I would advise against strawberries for most little ones. Read below.

So, yeah, be sure that your child is old enough to take on the “Acidity” of strawberries before offering this to him/her.  I think Paige, at 8 months at the time, wasn’t ready for strawberries.  The blueberries seemed to work better for her because they are a bit less acidic.  Regardless, you can try either option.

Simple Berry Chia Jam

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh strawberries or blueberries
  • 1 Tbsp. chia seeds
  • 1 T water
  • 1 tsp. maple syrup (or Stevia to taste)**

Instructions

  1. In a smaller bowl mash the berries with a fork or blend with a blender, leaving some nice chunks. Add the water, chia seeds and maple syrup (or Stevia if using). Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours, at least, and then enjoy on toast or waffles or however you’d like!

Notes

** For a baby led weaning snack, omit the sugar and/or Stevia all together. Get those babies used to fresh natural sweetness!

Nutrition Information

Serving size: ~2 Tbsp. (1/8th of recipe) Calories: 30 Fat: 1g Carbohydrates: 3g Sugar: 1.5g Fiber: 2g Protein: 1g

I toasted some really good whole grain bread with oats, and added a light layer of cream cheese and then a thick layer of jam on top.  I actually made the first batch of jam without using any sweetener at all, and it was perfectly fine for my taste buds.  This snack hit the spot.

Enjoy!  See you next week with a recipe for Chicken Salad with Butternut Squash and Grapes.

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Pepperoni Bread for the Holidays

Every year during the holidays I get requests for pepperoni bread. You see, I started making this bread about five years ago with my mom.  We would make about three loaves for Christmas and Christmas Eve.  It was so popular that we started getting requests from friends and family for us to make them their own personal loaves (mainly Nick, my dad, brother, and some cousins….note, mostly men.  But of course women love this too!).   Now we make anywhere from ten to twelve loaves during this time of the year.  I would quite honestly make more, if I had time, and arm strength (it’s a workout rolling out this dough, I tell you) but for now ten to twelve loaves do the trick.  It’s just a great food to have on hand to bring to holiday parties, give as gifts, or even set out on the table when random guests drop by.  Everyone likes a good pepperoni bread. Everyone!

Pepperoni Bread for the Holidays

Ingredients

  • 1 loaf of frozen bread dough (I buy the 4 packs from Kroger)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1-1.5 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ~30 turkey pepperoni

Instructions

  1. Thaw the dough according to the directions on the package (make sure it doesn’t start to puff up. If this happens you have let it thaw for too long).
  2. Preheat your oven according to package baking directions.
  3. Spread out the thawed dough on a greased baking sheet and make it into a long rectangle. Get the dough as flat and large as possible (so it can roll easily).
  4. Top the dough evenly with olive oil, seasoning, cheese and pepperoni.
  5. Fold one side of the bread into the center of the rectangle, and then fold the other side on top of that. Use your fingers to pinch the dough so the seem is tightly closed (also make sure the ends of the bread are closed too). Flip the bread onto the seam before baking.
  6. Bake according to directions on the package (likely 25-30 minutes) until the tops are slightly browned. Take out of the oven and allow to cool. Cut into about 10-12 pieces, and enjoy with warm marinara sauce.

Notes

This is not a low FODMAPs recipe.

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 1 slice Calories: ~100 Fat: 5 g Saturated fat: 2 g Carbohydrates: 4.6 g Sodium: 236 mg Protein: 5.1 g

 This is the dough when it’s flat and in a “rectangular” shape.  You see the rectangle?  Yeah, sort of. I mean, it’s dough.

After topping the dough similar to making a pizza, you fold one side into the center, and the flip the next side on top of that.  Some of the ingredients might start to poor out, but that’s ok, just stuff them back in.

I make 4-5 at a time.  The kitchen smells wonderful when these are baking.  Sometimes the cheese oozes out, and that’ok (I just eat it, because I can’t present someone with a pepperoni bread with cheese oozing out, I mean, that just wouldn’t be right….).

See how nice and golden brown these are?  Perfection.

I assure you these will be the hit of any holiday gathering.  You may even need to make two for any party you’re attending, because they go fast!  Happy holidays everyone.

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Orange-Date Pumpkin Muffins (Gluten Free)

Many of you know I used to be a supermarket dietitian.  It was such an amazing experience, but I was ready to move on after three years, as I was offered the opportunity to start making a change in the lives of college students, my absolute favorite age group with whom to work.  I still sometimes miss being in the aisles, helping customers read and understand food labels, and also handing out delicious samples of new unique foods.  But it’s also fun now to be the customer and go into my old store to visit the dietitian.  Sure, it’s bitter sweet (that was once me, is she doing a better job?! Do my favorite customers and team members have the same special bond with her now??) but I knew I had to move on eventually.  One of my favorite things to do when I go in there is browse the new recipes.  We were always sent new recipes, each month, from the corporate office to handout to customers and to display on our table.  I always looked forward to the day we received the recipes in the mail because they were almost always fantastic.  About a month ago I grabbed this recipe for Orange-Date Pumpkin Muffins.  I was skeptical at first (orange, date, and pumpkin?!) but trust me when I say they were simply delicious (especially when pipping hot out of the oven!).

True story, I made these muffins once with prunes.  You see, that’s all I had in the house and I didn’t want to go out and get dates. They were just as good with the prunes (or should I say, “dried plums”).  So, dates, prunes, whatever you have, they will work in this recipe.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups oat flour (or brown rice flour)
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 large seedless orange, scrubbed and cut into 8 sections (peel left on)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg white
  • ⅔ cup canned, unseasoned pumpkin puree (look for one without BPA) **
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 5 Tbsp. nonfat yogurt
  • ⅔ cup chopped pitted dates **
  • 3 Tbsp. chopped walnuts (or almonds)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat 12 standard 21/2-inch muffin cups with cooking spray.
  2. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl.
  3. Puree orange sections in a food processor. To the food processor add egg, egg white, pumpkin, sugar, maple syrup and yogurt; process until smooth. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients; add the wet ingredients and dates, and stir with a rubber spatula until just combined. Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin pan and top with the walnuts.
  4. Bake the muffins until the tops spring back when touched lightly; 15-18 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Loosen the edges and turn the muffins out onto a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.

Notes

** Pumpkin and dates contain FODMAPs. The amount of pumpkin in this recipe is pretty small, so for most people it won’t cause any problems, but if you’d like to replace the pumpkin with a lower FODMAPs starchy vegetable, butternut squash (cooked well and pureed) would be a good choice. The dates can’t be replaced with anything low FODMAPs, as all dried fruits contains some type of FODMAP. Most people will be able to handle up to 2 dates at a time (likely less than you would get in one muffin).

** If you want to make this egg free, substitute one banana for the egg and egg white

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 1 muffin Calories: 175 Fat: 3 g Saturated fat: 1 g Carbohydrates: 36.8 g Sugar: 18 g Sodium: 219 mg Fiber: 3.8 g Protein: 4 g Cholesterol: 16 g

Nutrition Highlights:  Under 200 calories, good source of fiber and vitamin C (15% DV vitamin C), excellent source of vitamin A (44% DV).

I would normally use walnuts, but I only had almonds on this particular day. Any nut would work as a topping (hmm..maybe not pistachios…).

I often get asked what kind of butter or margarine I use.  I have a strong preference for Smart Balance products.  I just really love the way they taste, and I like that they are functional foods; ie: they add omega-3, or flax, or olive oil, or….you get it.  Now, I wouldn’t say it’s ever enough to really make a difference (because, it’s not), but I still like the idea that Nick and I are getting little extra omega-3 when we use their products.  I also like their light margarines, and their margarine/butter blend baking sticks.  And keep in mind all of their products are free of hydrogenated oils.

I think you will love these muffins as much as we did.  Honestly, the margarine we smeared on top of these weren’t even necessary, they were so moist and flavorful already.

Stay tuned for Friday’s post, which will be all about how you can start changing your environment for weight loss and management success.  Enjoy your Thursday!

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Egg White and Oat Protein “Pancakes”

I’ll be honest, I eat the same thing for breakfast about 330 days of the year (random guess, but I bet I’m pretty close!).  The other 35 days, I eat either a new recipe I’ve come up with, or today’s recipe; Egg White and Oat Protein “Pancakes”.  Ever since I learned that breakfast is the best time to consume a large amount of protein, I’ve made sure to get at least 20-30 grams of protein in my morning meal.  Remember when I posted about the importance of high-protein breakfasts for weight loss and management?  Today’s recipe falls short of the 30 gram protein recommendation, but if you jazz it up with a dollop of Greek yogurt, or even a sprinkling of PB2, regular peanut butter, or vanilla whey protein powder, you can easily reach the 30 gram recommendation.

Egg White and Oat Protein “Pancakes”

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup old fashioned oats
  • 5 egg whites
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup frozen or fresh berries (optional topping)
  • Syrup (optional topping)
  • Coconut whipped cream (optional topping)
  • Greek yogurt (optional topping)

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl add the egg whites, vanilla and the oats. Allow the oats to sit in the egg whites for ~15 minutes.
  2. Pour the mixture into the center of a non-stick pan. Use clean fingers to spread the oats out evenly (they tend to form in a clump when you pour out the mixture).
  3. Cook the pancake on medium for about 2 minutes, or until you can easily flip the “pancake” without it falling apart (you can tell this by using a spatula to sort of pick up the pancake).
  4. Flip the pancake and cook the other side thoroughly, ~1-2 minutes.
  5. Serve warm and top with your desired toppings.

Notes

** This is a low FODMAPs recipe
** The nutrition facts account for the egg whites, oats, and vanilla. The toppings you add will obviously add more calories, but the choices for those are up to you.

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 1 “Pancake” Calories: 169 Fat: 1.6 g Carbohydrates: 15.6 g Sugar: 1.9 g Sodium: 276 mg Fiber: 2.1 g Protein: 20.7 g

Nutrition Highlights: Under 200 calories, excellent source of protein.

I remember the first time I heard about this recipe one morning on the Today Show. Joy Bauer was talking about her favorite breakfasts and this was one of them.  Of course it was slightly different, but the same idea.  I jazzed it up with the optional coconut whipped “cream”, berries, and/or Greek yogurt. Like I mentioned above, I’ve also had this with PB2 or peanut butter and unsweetened cocoa powder on top (the PB2 and peanut butter adds flavor and more protein).Click on the photo to get the recipe for this coconut whipped “cream”.

Just a warning, if you decide to make the coconut whipped “cream”, it’s highly addicting.  The first time I made it I almost ate the entire batch, because it really doesn’t make much and it seems so light, fluffy, airy, harmless.  I quickly realized that, “Oh yeah, this is full fat coconut milk, concentrated.  That’s a lot of calories and fat, perhaps I should slllllow down”.  Of course, the saturated fat in coconut is supposed to be a “healthier saturated fat”, but still….As you can sort of see in the photo, I use sugar free syrup. I know, I know, it’s strange.  I do own real maple syrup, but I bought this because sometimes I really like to use a lot of syrup (and Nick always uses a lot of syrup) so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to have some sugar-free syrup in the house.  I really despise most sugar-free foods (they don’t taste good, and their sugar alcohols make me bloated) but for some reason I really love sugar-free syrup. Of course I only use the real stuff in recipes (ie: real maple syrup).If you want more ideas for protein “pancakes”? Check out my Buckeye Protein Pancakes and my Carrot Cake Protein Pancakes (my personal favorite).  And, enjoy your Tuesday!

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Vegan Pumpkin Pie Tarts with Coconut Whipped “Cream”

I’m not vegan, but of course, I enjoy making vegan recipes.  I’ve said it before, but it’s really tough following a vegan (or vegetarian diet) when you have IBS and need to stick to a low FODMAPs diet.  The truth is that most vegan recipes contain ingredients that I just can’t stomach (pun intended).  But I’ve found that the longer I am on this low FODMAPs diet, the better I can tolerate some very high FODMAPs foods, such as certain nuts and dried fruits.  I like to make recipes like these Carrot Cake Raw Bites, because not only do I know I will love them (if I stick to one at a time) but I know friends will love them too (even my husband who freaks when I call anything vegan, or raw….or gluten-free…or…you get it).

Vegan Pumpkin Pie Tarts with Coconut Whipped “Cream”

Ingredients

  • ½ cup of raw almonds
  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • ¾ cup dates (about 18), pitted
  • ½ cup raisins
  • ¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups pureed pumpkin (plain, with nothing added)
  • 10 dates, pitted
  • 1 medium banana
  • ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil

Instructions

  1. Get out a mini muffin pan and set aside (you could also use a regular muffin pan but this will make less than 18 tarts, probably closer to 10)
  2. Place crust ingredients (almonds through salt) into a food processor and process until you see a crumbly mixture form, about one minute.
  3. Take about 2 Tbsp of “dough” into your fingers and press into each section of the mini muffin pan, using your fingers to gently press it into the pan firmly, all the way up the sides of each mini muffin section. Place it in the fridge (note, you may have to do two rounds since most mini muffin pans only hold 12 muffins).
  4. To make the filling, pour the rest of the ingredients into a blender. Turn it on until a smooth mixture forms, a couple of minutes.
  5. Take the mini tarts out of the fridge, add about 2-3 Tbsp of filling per tart, and chill for a few hours in the fridge.

Notes

** If you are following a low FODMAPs diet be aware that most of the ingredients in this recipe contain FODMAPs. I am personally able to handle ~1/2 of one tart in one sitting, but overall this is a very high-FODMAPs recipe, and most people following this diet will not handle these ingredients well. If you are past the elimination phase and want to try this recipe to bring somewhere or share with friends, don’t be afraid to take a couple of bites to “test the waters” (you’ve gotta test these foods eventually, right?!)

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 1 tart Calories: 145 Fat: 6.4 g Saturated fat: 3.2 g Carbohydrates: 21.7 g Sugar: 13.6 g Sodium: 36 mg Fiber: 3.5 g Protein: 2.7 g

Nutrition Highlights:  Excellent source of vitamin A (over 100% DV), ZERO added sugar (amazing), a good source of fiber, low sodium

To make the coconut “cream” you will need 1 can of full-fat coconut milk, chilled in the coldest part of your fridge, overnight (I put my cans in the chiller drawer). Remove the can after it has chilled and turned it upside down.  Open the can and pour out the liquid, which should leave you with anywhere from 5 tbsp. to 12 tbsp of solid coconut milk (depending on how well your milk chilled!).  Whip the solid milk in a chilled glass bowl for about 2-3 minutes, or until it becomes nice and fluffy.  Add liquid stevia if you desire.

If you have any vegan guests coming to your Thanksgiving gathering, these tarts will be a hit, I promise. Yes, you can make these tarts into a pie if you’d like (that’s what the original recipe suggested), but I thought tarts were more fun.  I did look through the internet for a while to find some good vegan pie pumpkin recipes, and to be honest this one was my favorite.  My (personal) basic guidelines when searching for a good vegan pumpkin pie (or tart!) recipe are as follows; no tofu (it doesn’t agree with me and often my guests do not like it), no crazy ingredients (some recipes were calling for ingredients that I would never use again), and last, it has to be gluten-free.  Why gluten-free? Because if you’ve got a guest who is vegan, you’ve probably also got a guest that is gluten-free, so why not kill two birds with one stone?  If you’re looking for a more traditional (although not gluten-free) vegan pumpkin pie, check out this recipe from The Vegetarian Times.

Bring these to your Thanksgiving gathering. Don’t call them “Vegan Pumpkin Pie Tarts”, call them “Sweet Pumpkin Pie Tarts”, I promise you will get a better reaction.  When they ask, What’s in them?, repeat these words; Nuts, sugar, salt, pumpkin, and lots of love” (notice I am highlighting the “normal” ingredients, ones that won’t get questioned…. Enjoy!

By the way, this week’s posts are going to be mainly desserts, so I hope your sweet tooth is going crazy like mine has been the past week or so!  Tomorrow I’ll be posting vegan cinnamon and sugar biscuits, then Wednesday I’ll post a delicious butternut mousse.  Are you salivating yet?!

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Carrot Cake Protein Pancakes

I haven’t had real pancakes in a long time.  Actually Nick recently reminded me that it has literally been months (maybe even a full year) since I made pancakes.  I used to make them just about every weekend.  I think I got sick of making them.  I prefer higher protein breakfasts now, so pancakes (conventional) just don’t do it for me anymore (sorry Nick).Imagine what Nick said when I told him I’d make pancakes, then handed him these.  Muahaha.

I lied.  I never made these for Nick.  I think the carrots and yogurt would freak him out too much.

 Carrot Cake Protein Pancakes

Author: Adapted from PoshFoodie.com

Serves: 2 (each serving is 2 pancakes)

Ingredients

  • ½ cup egg whites (~ 4 eggs)
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • ½ scoop vanilla whey protein powder
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ cup pumpkin puree or carrot puree (baby food)
  • 
5 drops liquid Stevia
  • Dash of cinnamon and nutmeg
  • 
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 4 Tbsp. plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 
Liquid Stevia and cinnamon to taste
  • Shredded carrots (~ 1 carrot worth)

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl (minus the yogurt, carrot, Stevia and cinnamon at the end of the recipe, which is for the topping). Allow to sit for about 15 minutes at room temperature.
  2. While mixture is sitting, make the topping by mixing the yogurt, Stevia and cinnamon.
  3. Heat a large skillet to medium and spray with Pam (or whatever you typically use so pancakes don’t stick). Pour 4 pancakes onto the skillet and cook for ~2 minutes on each side.
  4. Put one pancake on each of two plates. Top each pancake with a layer of the yogurt mixture, then top that with a second pancake. Add more of the yogurt mixture and then add the shredded carrots. Enjoy!

Notes

** If you are following a low FODMAPs diet, this recipe is free of FODMAPs (other than a tiny bit from the lactose in the Greek yogurt, but there shouldn’t be enough in this recipe to cause issues). Make sure your protein powder is free of chicory root or inulin (fibers that are known as oligosaccharides).

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 2 pancakes Calories: 176 Protein: 18Allowing the oats and eggs to sit for about 15 minutes will cause the starch to be released from the oats a bit, making for a better texture of pancake, in my opinion.

Who needs carrot cake when you can have carrot cake protein pancakes???  Ok, need carrot cake, these don’t quite “take the cake” (haha) but seriously, very close.I don’t think I will ever make “real pancakes” anymore after trying these (and my Buckeye pancakes too, yum).  I just really enjoy the higher protein pancakes, and with nutrition facts like this, how could you not fall in love?!Estimated Nutrition Facts for 1 serving (2 pancakes)

Source: CalorieCount.com

NOTE: You could definitely make this a one serving recipe and still be just under 400 calories for breakfast.  Have you been paying attention to the latest news on weight loss and calorie distribution?  Research is showing that eating most of your calories in the morning and afternoon is proving to be best for weight loss, vs. eating small breakfasts then eating large lunches and huge dinners (as most of us do). So, why not make this a 1-serving recipe? You’d also reach your 30 gram protein goal that way!

Nutrition Highlights:  Under 200 calories, good source of fiber and calcium, excellent source of protein, and vitamin A.

Categories
Breads and Muffins

Buckeye Protein Pancakes (Go Bucks!)

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know I have an obsession with wedding cake.  Seriously, I know a good cake when I taste it.  In fact, I didn’t even care what my wedding cake looked like, I just cared that it tasted amazing (which is why I almost took a risk and drove down to North Carolina, where we got married, with a cake from Market District, a supermarket near our house in Ohio, who’s cake I know I love more than anything in this world).  I’m very glad I didn’t take that risk because it probably would have melted, sort of like our top layer melted on the way home (and so we ate it, and will not be eating it on September 29th of this year, our one year anniversary).  Anyway, I digress….My first true dessert love is wedding cake. My second? Buckeyes.They are definitely a close second, because with buckeyes I can’t do this….But no one makes a buckeye like my aunt JoAnn. No one. Not even these “healthier” buckeyes taste as good as hers (not that they should,why would they? They are lighter, and not even close to as rich as hers. Not even close).  In case you don’t know where I am going with this, The Ohio State Buckeye football team has their first game tomorrow.  We were planning on going, but we’ve decided to go to next week’s game instead (it should be a better game anyway).  But of course we’ll still be watching the game on TV, and we’re starting our pre-gaming right now, with these Buckeye Protein Pancakes (and in case you still aren’t aware of exactly what a Buckeye candy is, it’s rich creamy peanut butter and sugar dipped in chocolate).Buckeye Protein Pancakes

Makes: 2 servings (2 pancakes per serving)

Ingredients

6 egg whites

1/2 cup oats

3 Tbsp. plain yogurt

1/2 scoop (~2 Tbsp) chocolate protein powder of your choice

2 Tbsp. powdered peanut butter

1/2 tsp. baking powder

6 drops liquid Stevia

2 Tbsp. peanut butter, divided

Unsweetened cocoa and powdered sugar for topping (to taste)

Optional: Giant glass of vanilla unsweetened Almond Milk to chase down the yumminess.

 **NOTE:  If you are following a low FODMAPs diet this recipe is safe and free of FODMAPs.  Just be sure you choose a protein powder without inulin or other fiber additives. This is a Gluten Free recipe

Directions

  1. Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl, making sure to break-up any large clumps.

  1.  Allow to sit for about 15 minutes at room temperature.

  1.  Heat a medium skillet on the stovetop and spray with cooking spray.  Pour 4 pancakes on the skillet (or do two batches of two) and allow to cook about 1 minute on each side (or until cooked all the way through).
  2. Top with peanut butter and cocoa and powdered sugar to taste.

What’s better than a protein-packed breakfast, filled with the goodness of chocolate and peanut butter, to start off a great fall Football season?!  Nothing!Estimated Nutrition Facts for 1 serving (2 cakes)

Source: CalorieCount.com

Nutrition Highlights:  Good source of calcium and fiber, excellent source of protein and iron.Chasing these pancakes down with a big ol’ glass of milk was the icing on the cake (but of course, not buttercream. hahahaha).  I just know this is going to be a great football season.  I can smell it in the air (or, maybe that’s just chocolate and peanut butter I smell….).  GO BUCKS!