Grain-free Granola with Blueberry Yogurt

blueberry yogurt

This is a follow up recipe from my Sunday pancakes with blueberry compote. It has become one of my very favorite snacks and a wonderful way to use the leftover compote. I like my morning snacks to be high in protein with a balance of healthy fats. Greek yogurt is a wonderful option. If you have ever tried to eat plain greek yogurt, you may be painfully aware that it’s similar to trying to chow down on a bowl of sour cream. I like sour cream on my Mexican dishes, just not so much as a snack.

blueberry yougurt2

Greek yogurt has grown in popularity in the past few years. This means there are lots of tasty options at just about every grocery store. Unfortunately, those options are usually packed with lots of extra ingredients and an alarming amount of added sugar. The additives and sugar can quickly turn your “healthy” snack into a unhealthy downward spiral.

blueberry yogurt3

Making your own fruit flavored yogurt is one of the best ways to ensure you are getting the max nutritional benefit. Enter my leftover blueberry compote. It’s the perfect way to add natural sweetness and flavor for a nutritional snack. The only thing that makes this better is the addition of homemade grain-free granola. Some healthy fats to make for the perfectly balanced snack.

Ingredients:

Blueberry Yogurt:

  • 1 cup plain greek yogurt or plain yogurt
  • 1/4 cup blueberry compote
  • 1-2 tsp. maple syrup or honey (optional for added sweetness)

Grain-free Granola:

  • 1/4 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup coconut chips or shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp. melted coconut oil
  • 1-2 tbsp. pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon

Recipe:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees. Pour the nuts and seeds into a large bowl. Give them a quick mix using your clean hands or spoon.
  2. In a small ramekin combine melted coconut oil and maple syrup. Slowly pour the liquid mixture over the nuts and seeds. Stir until nuts are coated evenly.
  3. Add nuts to a baking sheet. Make sure they are in a thin layer. Use two baking sheets if necessary. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove nuts from oven and stir them on the baking sheet. Place back into oven for 5-10 minutes (until nuts have browned).
  4. Remove nuts from oven and leave in a thin layer to cool.
  5. Combine all ingredients for blueberry yogurt in a bowl and stir until the blueberry compote is completely mixed in.
  6. Once nuts and seeds have completely cooled, add the granola mixture to your yogurt and enjoy.

Gluten-free Pancakes with Blueberry Compote

berry compote pancakes 3

When the rest of your week is hectic sometimes you forget to take a moment to stop, breath and relax. How many of you have started to dread Sundays a bit? We start to look at it more as Monday Eve. Your shoulders start to get tense again and your mind is racing thinking about all that needs to get done for the work week. I think we have all been guilty of this, at one time or another. Let me stop you right there.

blueberry compote

Compote may sound like a fancy word for something difficult to make. Don’t let that fool you. It is as easy as it is delicious.

Today, you will not give up your last day of freedom. A day that you have earned from all the craziness and hard work from the week before. No! Today you will snuggle in bed a little bit longer, you will whip up a delicious batch of pancakes and stay in your pajamas until noon.

berry compote pancakes

This recipe is wonderful for those lazy Sundays. A warm batch of fluffy pancakes drizzle or doused with the sweet tastes of fresh blueberry compote. Although we may not have officially entered the peak blueberry season, the berries at our markets have been the perfect balance of crisp and sweet. This makes them delicious to eat on their own and use for cooking. This simple blueberry compote is the perfect substitute to jazz up your usual pancakes with maple syrup.

berry compote pancake 2

Whip up a quick batch of pancakes, sit back, relax and enjoy this incredible day.

**Quick tip: You may have extra compote left over. I will have a great way to enjoy it coming Tuesday**

Ingredients:

 Compote:

  • 2 1/2 cups Blueberries (I suggest fresh, but frozen can be used)
  • 2 tbsp. water
  • 1 tbsp. maple syrup or honey

Pancakes: Yields 6 pancakes 

  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/3 of small banana
  • 1/2 cup almond milk (optional: add more for thinner consistency)
  • 1/4 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil for coating pan

For higher protein pancakes try my Cinnamon and Vanilla Pancakes

Recipe:

  1. Place blueberries, water and maple syrup into sauce pan. Heat over medium heat until blueberries start to soften and change color. Remove from heat and let cool.
  2. Place all ingredients (minus coconut oil) for pancakes into blender or food processor. Mix until it forms a smooth batter.
  3. Heat a large skillet over low-medium heat. Melt coconut oil. Pour batter into pan in small or medium circles. Cook for 2-3 minutes each side. Repeat until all batter is used.
  4. While pancakes are cooking. Place your cooled blueberry mixture into a food processor or blender. Pulse until, you reach your desired consistency.
  5. Serve pancakes warm with heated compote. I love to add a dollop of greek yogurt to my pancakes along with the compote.

 

 

The Power of Hemp

First and foremost, I believe I owe you an apology for disappearing for a few weeks. Things had gotten a bit hectic, but rest assured I am back. But I won’t be sharing any recipes today. Instead I will be sharing my new found love addiction for many things hemp.

I have been adding hemp seeds to my salads, eating roasted hemp seeds on their own, making my energy bites using hemp protein powder and loving my shakes using an all natural strawberry hemp powder. Maybe you are one of the lucky ones who already knows all about the versatility of this super food. If not, I feel it is my duty to explain my love for the many forms of this once leafy green.

hemp.png

Your initial google search for hemp may leave you scratching your head. I know, it looks a whole lot like something else. But hemp is a remarkable crop that can be used for both food and nonfood purposes. I will be focusing on the edible benefits, but it is worth reading about the other uses.

hemp-protein

No matter how you decide to enjoy it, hemp is a wonderful source for protein. So what makes the protein in hemp so special? For starters, hemp is one of the most easily digested proteins. That means that your body can go right to work using it. More importantly this wholesome little protein is packed full of healthy amino acids.

Benefits-of-Hemp-Seeds

As if it being a wonderful natural source of protein wasn’t enough, hemp is also filled with lots of healthy fiber.Fiber is beneficial in helping support your digestive system and keeping you full. Studies suggest that most people following a westernized diet are not eating enough fiber.  On average people we consume 18 grams of fiber in a day. It is recommended that adults should be consuming closer to 30 grams. I know, 30 grams sounds like a lot. But would you rather up your increase your fiber intake by eating a heavily processed fiber one bar or a nutritional packed superfood?

If you haven’t had the chance yet, go ahead and give hemp a try. Hopefully you fall in love the way I did.

Clean & Green Detox Soup

detox soup

Nicer weather has finally made its way towards London. The sunnier weather has inspired me to head outside and get our garden ready to enjoy the longer and brighter days. So today, I went out and planted some new flowers and some fresh vegetables. Since I was adding fresh and green goodness to my garden, it seemed only right I do the same for my body.

flowers.jpg

After a long weekend of celebrations (anniversary, the Hubby’s birthday and Easter) my body was in dire need of a few day cleanse. The thought of a cleanse use to sound so scary to me. That was until I found one I enjoyed and made me feel amazing, even after just a few short days. It is an all vegan cleanse that also cuts out things like caffeine, alcohol and all processed foods.

veggies

detox soup2

This soup is my favorite clean and green recipe. It is hard to believe that such simple, wholesome ingredients could make something so satisfying and delicious. It’s packed with vegetables and fresh herbs to give you more than your fair share of vitamins and nutrients. It’s exactly what I needed after a long weekend of over indulgence. Plus, I had the added bonus of being able to enjoy it in my newly planted garden.

detox soup3

I love adding homemade sprouted bread croutons and crushed hemp seeds to mine

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups chopped green beans (fresh)
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • 2 cups chopped brocolli
  • 1/4 cup chopped spring onion
  • 2 small red skin potatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 cups vegetable or chicken stock ( add more stock or water if you prefer it thinner)
  • 1-2 tsp. crushed garlic
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • handful of fresh herbs chopped ( I love adding parsley and lemon tyme to mine)
  •  2 tsp. lemon juice
  • optional: hemp seeds or crushed nuts

Recipe:

  1. Add water and vegetables into a pan over medium-high heat. Cover with a lid and steam for 10-15 minutes until vegetables are tender.
  2. Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Serve hot.

Flourless Lemon Chia Seed Muffins

lemon chia seed muffins4

We just welcomed Spring and Easter will be here in less than a week. In prep for our Easter brunch, I decided I would start experimenting with a few recipes. Since I’ve been focusing on cooking with clean, wholesome ingredients it was important that Easter not completely derail me. I wanted something on the sweeter side that could still have me feeling good when I ate it. I just knew mini muffins were the way to go. I didn’t want to stick with the usual blueberry, it was time to be a bit more adventurous.

lemon chia seed muffins

Lately I have been adding lemon juice to just about everything. To hot water in the morning, to salad dressings and drizzled on my veggies. It only made sense that it would be the perfect accompaniment for these mini muffins. You may have heard of lemon poppyseed muffins. I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed one of those. Matter of fact, I can’t remember the last time I had poppyseeds in my house. Fear not! This woman knows how to improvise.

lemon chia seed muffins

Not only were the chia seeds a genius improvisation, but they worked wonderfully in these sweet lemony muffins.

lemon chia seed muffins 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups almond meal/flour
  • 2 tbsp. chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 4 tbsp. pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • juice from one lemon

Recipe:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In medium bowl, mix all dry ingredients together. In a separate bowl, whisk all wet ingredients.
  3. Slowly begin to pour the wet ingredients to the dry and continue to mix until well combined.
  4. Pour batter into greased cupcake tins. Bake for 25 for mini muffins and 35 for regular muffins.

Minty Strawberry Banana Shake- 21 Day Fix Approved

Mintry Strawberry Banana shake2

Happy first day of Spring! Before moving to London, I forgot how amazing Spring time truly is. In Florida, our four seasons looked very different. You had hot, hotter, it’s so hot out I’m melting, and a week  or two of semi-cold weather that felt freezing to us. Our leaves didn’t change in the fall and our plants didn’t die off in the winter. The rest of the world was patiently waiting for warmer weather, longer days, greener grass and the first flowers of spring. We were already sweating and going to the beach on the weekends.

strawberry banana

I know it sounds amazing, but you don’t realize just how much you missed out until you see something different. Spring time here is filled with longer days, lighter jackets and some of the most stunning gardens I have ever seen…EVER.

Minty Strawberry Banana Shake

In honor of the first day of spring I decided to switch up my usual warm and hearty breakfast for a delicious cool and satisfying shake. I wanted something that was bright, lively and celebrated the fresh tastes of spring. Spring time is the perfect season for strawberries. They are crisply sweet and the juice just bursts into your mouth. This shake combines that crisp sweetness, the smoothness of banana and the freshness of mint leaves to help you feel as lively as the new spring blossoms.

Minty Strawberry Banana Smoothie3

21 Day Fix summary: (made with all almond milk)  1 purple + 1 Red

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup fresh strawberries
  • 1/2 cup sliced banana
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 cup coconut water or substitute 1/2 cup almond milk
  • scoop of vanilla protein powder
  • 3-4 fresh mint leaves
  • sprinkle of cinnamon
  • optional- 1/2 cup ice

Recipe:

  1.  Place all ingredients into blender and blend until  velvety smooth consistency.

Clean Eating Almond and Goji Chocolate Bark

clean eating chocolate 4

Today as I was out and about running my errands I remembered I needed to pick up stuff to fill our adult Easter baskets. Yes, adults still enjoy them too! While perusing through the chocolate aisle I noticed every piece seemed to be calling my name. I have been enjoying lots of decadent sweets since my sister has been in town. It has only left me craving for more and more.

clean eating chocolate

I knew whipping up a quick batch of this bark would be a happy medium. I could feel like I was indulging without having the tummy ache or guilt that usually follows. The chocolate is made with only 3 clean ingredients. I love topping my bark with dried goji berries and crushed almonds, but you could mix and match with your favorite toppings. I prefer to add slightly salted almonds because it adds a hint of sea salt to the chocolate too.

clean eating chocolate2

clean eating chocolate3

Ingredients:

  •  100 grams or 1/3 cup of coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp. pure maple syrup
  • 4-5 tbsp. cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1/4 cup dried goji berries
  • 1/3 cup crushed almonds
  • sprinkle of cinnamon

Recipe:

  1. Carefully melt coconut oil in microwave. In a bowl or large cup stir together melted coconut oil and maple syrup. Carefully pour in cocoa powder, stirring often. Continue to stir until it creates a smooth mixture.
  2. Line a baking pan with a grease proof baking sheet. Pour the chocolate mixture over the sheet spreading it evenly. Sprinkle crushed almonds and goji berries over the chocolate. Add a dash of cinnamon over the bark.
  3. Place in the refrigerator for 10 minutes or until chocolate hardens.
  4. Pick up the whole piece of bark and remove the baking sheet from the bottom of it. Using your hands, break the bark into smaller chunks and enjoy.
  5. Keep the bark in the fridge or the freezer so that it doesn’t soften. I love snacking on mine right from the freezer.