Weekly Review: Good Eats, Friends Date & The Weekend

Another week of March has come and gone, what?! In exactly five days we are going to be into April and I am so excited! April is my favorite month! Why you ask?

It’s BIRTHDAY MONTH!

One of my favorite parts of life is being able to celebrate my beautiful sister’s and my birthday together since they are only two days apart! This year will be different, for the mister and I are traveling during birthday week, but that doesn’t mean anything in regards to birthday month! ūüėČ

20170327_111930

I thought we’d have coffee together on this dreary Monday and just recap our last week. Was yours good? I hope so! Not a lot of sunshine the past few days, but I know that it’s coming. “Be patient Melissa.”

Monday

Monday was a typical day in the life, meal planning, grocery store for vegetables, cleaning & organizing, and of course some time in the kitchen!

I made up a delicious Beef & Veggie Taco Pasta for dinner. Low carb ‚ąö, healthy ‚ąö, dairy free¬†‚ąö and easy¬†‚ąö¬†! I’m going to have to make it again, so I can share what I did, but all you need to do is make taco meat, add all the vegetable you want, pasta of choice, add a little pasta water to help make a sauce and there you have it!

20170320_191758.jpg

I also tried out a new recipe for dessert¬†Almond Flour Blondies. I substituted swerve sweetener for the sugar, and halved the amount brown sugar called for by using truvia brown sugar. Then used dairy free chocolate chips. OMG. Get on that recipe. It’s good!

20170320_165029

20170321_214626

Wednesday

Wednesday started out on a happy note, the sun was shining and I got to enjoy a lovely breakfast while reading my early birthday present from a dear friend!

20170322_101146

Trim Healthy Mama cookbook is amazing! So if you are looking for great recipes to add to your current way of eating, get on that! Thank you so much to my Lauren for the awesome surprise!

I then joined some of my favorites from work to see Beauty & the Beast! It is everything you dreamed it would be. At one point I did feel like I might be tripping (although I never have so hmmm). Just go see it!

20170322_170712

We ended up getting a late lunch at¬†J. Timothy’s Taverne¬†and it was really nice spending time with these lovelies outside of work.

20170322_163334

Buffalo Chicken Cobb Salad

I’m very grateful to have a job where we can all get together on a Wednesday, it really made for a great midweek treat!

Thursday

By the time Thursday came around, I was feeling the need to slow down {for no apparent reason} so the day is a blur. I’m sure I spent most of it relaxing and looking at recipes, because that’s what a foodie does, when she wants to do nothing!

We did have some delicious¬†Roasted Cauliflower & White Cheddar Soup¬†paired with some leftover ham. I used Kerrygold’s grass fed white cheddar (which I know is not dairy free) but sometimes, we have to indulge a little!

20170323_192455

Friday

20170324_064059

Can you believe this sunrise? That’s what Friday started with before work, and it was just gorgeous. I really need to start using my “adult camera” more. I am amazed at how beautiful nature, life, everything is, if we just take a moment to really see it.

Before we knew it, the weekend was here!

Saturday & Sunday

Our plans for the weekend were up in the air and I’m happy with how relaxed it was.

We enjoyed a delicious weekend breakfast.

20170325_094045

We went grocery store hopping- Market 32, Costco, Adam’s and Whole Foods in one weekend! (I would live in grocery stores if I could)

We hit up Whole Foods Hot/Cold Bar for some lunch.

20170326_131616

I found some great new items to add to my list of wholesome products I love. We are prepared for some healthy good eats this week!

We ate our favorite The Best Turkey Sloppy Joes over spaghetti squash.

20170325_181211

We marathon watched Bridget Jones, all three of them! Well, the dogs and I did.

20170325_200753

We spent time with our family for Sunday dinner.

20170326_165908

20170326_203634

This handsome boy is always on the go, so that’s the best we did! I still love it.

20170326_201846

And we ended our weekend on a sweet note. Sugar free Strawberry Banana Jello, strawberries and coconut whip!

20170326_190858

All in all, a great week of good eats, some wonderful moments with the ones we love, and another week to be thankful for.

Until next time, enjoy all your moments, whatever they may be. They all count!

Advertisements

Low Carb Vegetable Lasagna Soup

20170220_112254

Spring is in the air people! The birds have been singing, we’ve had a lot of warm sunny days and I’m personally absolutely thrilled! So are my buddies, obviously.

20170102_153232

Despite good weather being on the cusp, there is snow on the horizon, and I decided to make some tummy warming soup. The kind that fills you up, makes you happy, and tastes unbelievably decadent. Although, it’s healthier for you and easy to make in one pot!

One pot meals are my ¬†jam. Because I literally hate doing all the dishes and when you cook at home, dishes pile up everywhere. It’s the one major downside to eating at home, in my opinion. The good outweighs the bad though, delicious food made to show how much you love your family, that is winning every time.

I found this recipe on one of my favorite blogs Carls Bad Cravings. I had to tweak it though to fit my nutritional needs- lower carb, no meat {Lent}, and limited dairy. I have eliminated most dairy for over a week now, and I feel so good! Less bloat, more energy and I have restarted my weight loss from the plateau I’ve been in for a few months. I say limited, because I completely put parmesan cheese in this soup, and I’m not upset about it! ūüėČ

20170301_183253

Vegetable Lasagna Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp grass-fed butter or ghee
  • 1 cup carrots, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 4-5 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp each of dried basil, oregano, thyme, crushed red pepper and garlic powder
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 tsp xantham gum
  • 1-2 tbsp gluten-free cornstarch {depending on how thick you want your soup}
  • 15 oz can cannellini beans
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 8 oz of uncooked pasta of choice {I use thinslim pasta}
  • 1 cup cashew milk {or almond milk, cream, milk, etc}
  • 9 oz fresh spinach, chopped
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, shredded or grated
  • water to thin recipe, if desired
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter/ghee in a large Dutch oven/soup pot over medium high heat. Add onions and carrots, cook for 4-5 minutes while stirring. Add bell pepper and garlic and cook for 1 minute, until garlic is fragrant. Add in all your spices and mix into vegetables. Sprinkle in xantham gum.

Turn heat to medium low and gradually stir in 7 cups of the chicken broth. Stir in beans, bay leaves and pasta, bring to a boil then reduce to simmer to allow vegetables to fully soften and pasta to cook. Stir occasionally so pasta doesn’t stick to the bottom (approximately 15-20 minutes).

Whisk 1-2 tablespoons cornstarch with 1 cup additional chicken broth and add to soup, to thicken.

Turn heat to low, discard bay leaf and stir in milk {of choice}¬†and spinach, warming through. Stir in 1 cup Parmesan cheese until melted. Stir in additional chicken broth or water¬†if desired for a less ‚Äúchunky‚ÄĚ soup. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.

20170301_183232

Now it’s time to enjoy! This is a thick, creamy soup that is so good. I didn’t miss the meat, but if you want to add it, go ahead!

What I love most about soup is that it is so versatile. You can add anything to it, and it usually will end up being the best bowl of soup you’ve ever had!

So while we have some snow coming our way over the next week, grab your veggies and get chopping! Soup’s on!

20170301_183247

Zucchini & Sausage “Baked Ziti”

20170223_184000-001

Mmmmmm…..just say that with me. Mmmmmm….

Now that we’ve established our favorite noise for the day, let’s get on with the good stuff.

Food. Be still my beating heart.

I will never be able to give up my passion for food. I may be on a journey to healthy, but that doesn’t stop me from creating good real food that both my stomach and heart purely enjoy.

They say weight loss is approximately 75% diet, 25% exercise. They also say that the 90/10 rule is a pretty good guide for eating healthy. Eating healthy and on point 90% of the time seems pretty decent, if you ask me. I believe in a cheat meal a week mentality. I don’t think anyone can be perfect 100% of the time, because let’s be real- who wants to live that life? I don’t.

That being said, I am all about changing what is meant to be a cheat comfort meal, into a healthy meal I can eat whenever I want!

For example, in walks pasta, dives head first into a steamy jacuzzi of sauce, then welcomes a cozy blanket of cheese. That is my love language.

I can’t have pasta though. So instead we use our trusty zucchini and spiralizer to make dreams come true. It’s amazing and my life is forever changed.

20170223_184009

 

Zucchini & Sausage “Baked Ziti”

Ingredients

  • 2 large zucchinis, spiralized
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 3 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups marinara sauce
  • 1 lb italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 tbsp italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (depending on level of heat you like)
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese + more for topping
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese + more for topping
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large oven safe sauté pan, brown and crumble sausage.

20170223_175251

When cooked, add diced onion and pepper to pan. Saute 5-7 minutes until vegetables start to become tender. Add minced garlic and saute 1-2 minutes until fragrant.

20170223_175316

Then add diced tomatoes and marinara sauce.

20170223_175814

20170223_175950

Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, italian seasoning and crushed red pepper flakes. Add 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese to sauce. Allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes and for sauce to thicken. (When zucchini is added and cooked, it will give off water).

20170223_180633

When sauce has thickened, add 1/2 cup ricotta cheese and mix into sauce.

20170223_181041

20170223_181143

Pour in zucchini noodles and mix into sauce.

20170223_181247

20170223_181304

Top with dollops of ricotta cheese and shredded mozzarella.

20170223_181556

20170223_181739

Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, until cheese is melted. Set oven to broil on high for 3-5 minutes until cheese is browned and bubbling.

 

20170223_183929

This dish is full of so much flavor! The zucchini noodles are cooked just right with a little bit of bite, leaving your palate feeling like you are eating al dente pasta!

20170223_184142

The cheese, oh the cheese. No description ever needed. I heart cheese, hard.

20170223_184646

Please make this. The husband told me he’d eat it once a week from here on out. That’s a big ole’ compliment in my book!

20170223_184744

Happy eating my friends!

 

Low Carb Strawberry Poke Cake

 

20170201_201030

Wow, where did January go?! Here we are pushing towards the middle of February already! I can honestly tell you, January was a busy month. So many memories made with family and friends, no wonder once February came I felt I needed a break.

20170124_222845

In the form of baking, of course. Although, curling up to this guy is a favorite too!

We should never deny our loves in life, no matter how big or small they may be. Time spent baking really fills my soul, I truly hope something in your life does the same.

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I thought I’d share a new favorite! I personally feel every day is a day to celebrate love, life and the people who matter the most, but it is a nice occasion to bake something special.

I stumbled upon Low Carb Strawberry Poke Cake on one of my favorite low carb blogs, All Day I Dream About Food. I have made so many of the recipes on this amazing blog, and they are always fantastic. I hope you enjoy!

This recipe was slightly adapted from All Day I Dream About Food. 

20170201_201041

Low Carb Strawberry Poke Cake

Ingredients

Cake

  • 3 cups almond flour
  • 3/4 cup swerve sweetener
  • 1/3 cup vanilla quest protein powder
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup salted butter, melted
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup half and half

Strawberry Filling

  • 1 1/2 cups fresh strawberries, quartered
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 tbsp powdered swerve sweetener
  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum

Topping

  • 1- 8 oz container cool whip

Directions

Preheat oven to 325 degrees and grease a 9X9 baking pan well. In a large bowl whisk together the almond flour, swerve sweetener, quest protein powder, baking soda and salt. Stir in melted butter, eggs, vanilla extract and half and half, until well combined. Spread batter in prepared baking pan, baking 25 to 30 minutes or until edges are beginning to brown and top is firm to the touch. Remove and let cool, then use the handle of a wooden spoon to poke large holes all over the cake.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine strawberries and water. Bring to a boil and then simmer until berries are very soft. Puree in a blender or with a hand blender, then stir in sweetener. Sprinkle surface with xanthan gum and whisk vigorously to combine. Let cool until somewhat thickened.
Pour filling over cake and tap the baking pan gently on the counter to help it fill the holes. Refrigerate until set, about 1 hour. Top with cool whip and additional strawberries if desired.

20170201_201022

This cake is moist, sweet and just so darn delicious. An easy dessert to make that will captivate your palate.

Happy Friday to you all! May your weekend be full of adventure, relaxation and happiness!

It’s Low Carb Pumpkin Muffin Time

dsc_0048-001

Happy Friday all! It almost seems impossible that tomorrow is the last day of 2016, how did this happen? Wasn’t it just New Years Eve 2015? Weren’t we all putting on our party hats, drinking champagne and watching the ball drop?!

No Melissa, that was a whole year ago and what a year it has been! {Disclaimer: I didn’t actually make it to watch the ball drop last year, but I hope you did!} I also hope you all had the best year with your families, your personal lives, your professional lives, your health, your dreams, etc. All of it. If you in fact had a rough year, I am sending much positive energy your way for a great start to 2017!

I know how I am going to start 2017- by devoting more time to something I love doing. This blog. Making new recipes. Taking pictures. Being a foodie. Loving every second of it.

What better way to end my sporadic year of posts, than to share a recipe that I will be making weekly from here on out. I hope you decide to do the same. Your hearts and bellies will thank me!

dsc_0052

Low Carb Pumpkin Streusel Muffins

Ingredients

Muffins

  • 5 eggs
  • 1/3 cup pure pumpkin puree
  • 1/3 cup swerve sweetener {or equivalent sweetener of choice}
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice

Streusel Topping

  • 1/3 cup palm shortening
  • 1/3 cup swerve sweetener
  • 2 tbsp coconut flour
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon

Directions

In a blender or food processor (can also use your magic bullet type blenders ;-)), combine eggs, pumpkin, and sweetener.                                                                                                           Then add in coconut flour, salt, baking soda, and pumpkin pie spice until well combined.
Divide batter between 8 paper lined muffin cups
Rinse out blender or food processor to make streusel topping
In the same blender or food processor, combine shortening and sweetener
Pulse in coconut flour and cinnamon
Sprinkle topping over muffin batter
Bake at 350¬į for 20-25 minutes
Cool 1 hour

dsc_0043

Muffins can be kept in the refrigerator in ziplock bags or closed containers for 5-7 days.  Can also be frozen.

dsc_0045

A wonderful, healthy treat for breakfast or for a midday snack.

dsc_0050

dsc_0053

Happiest of New Years to you all! Enjoy your weekend and let’s crush some goals in 2017!!

Low Carb Italian Cookies

Can you believe that Christmas is really over?!

It just seems like yesterday that the season started and we pulled all our normal decor off the shelves and Christmas came exploding into our homes. What a wonderful season to be celebrated and I hope it was just as fabulous as you all imagined!

When the holidays come, what better way to indulge in the most wonderful time of year, than to bake our little hearts out! I love baking all year round, but there is something so amazing about making treats for all of your loved ones to enjoy on Christmas! This year, I sang Christmas carols and really enjoyed the whole process of making Christmas cookies.

I’ve decided, without a doubt, next year I will be hosting a christmas cookie exchange party, so my people better be ready! They do have a whole year now to prepare ūüėČ

One of my favorite cookies from this year, is by far this Low Carb Italian Cookie. It is moist, buttery and I bet you won’t be able to stop at just one!

dsc_0037

Low Carb Italian Cookies

Ingredients

Cookies

  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup swerve sweetener {or equivalent sweetener of choice}
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Glaze

  • 1/4 cup swerve confectioners sweetener
  • 2 tbsp half and half
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • sprinkles

Directions

Cookies:
Preheat oven to 325F and line a large baking sheet with a silicone liner or parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond flour, coconut flour, baking powder, and salt.
In a large bowl, beat the butter with the Swerve until well combined. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract.
Then beat in the almond flour mixture until the dough comes together.
Roll the dough into 1 inch balls and place 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheet. You will get 24 to 28 balls. Press the balls down with the palm of your hand to about ¬Ĺ inch thick.
Bake about 12 minutes, until just barely beginning to firm up. Remove and let cool on the pan.
Glaze:
In a medium bowl, whisk together the Swerve, half and half, and vanilla extract. Dip the top of the cookies into the glaze and set back on the pan. Sprinkle as desired.

dsc_0034

dsc_0031

Seriously, make these.

dsc_0019

dsc_0018_1

I really wish Christmas lasted a little longer, but it unfortunately goes by so quickly! That doesn’t mean we can’t make these all year long, just change your sprinkles!

In my opinion, there are never too many sprinkles in life!

Spinach & Bacon Smothered Chicken

The fall has been good to us this year. Beautiful, vibrant colors and the most delightful sunny days have been our normal. Such amazing weather can temporarily transport you back to the summer heat, but then you are reminded when the leaves continue to fall, that autumn is more than already upon us.

20161020_115739

We have spent a large amount of our time outside this year and I have loved the fresh breeze on our faces, and the pure happiness being outside brings.

20161020_115530

I hope you have been able to enjoy all that autumn’s beauty gives us and if not, it is not too late! Go outside and play in the leaves!

20161020_115621

If the weather is a little dreary in your neighborhood, then pour yourself a steamy hot cup of coffee or a nice smooth glass of wine, either works just fine. Then break out all the ingredients for this delicious dish and get cooking! While it is easy to make (always a winner in my book), it has so much flavor and feels like quite the fancy dinner! It’s definitely a hit with guests!

Spinach & Bacon Smothered Chicken

Makes 4 servings

20160822_191258

Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken breast, cut into 4 pieces
  • Salt, pepper and garlic powder¬†{to season chicken}
  • 1¬†tbsp olive oil
  • 4 tsp minced garlic
  • 9 oz fresh spinach
  • 2/3 cup light cream
  • 2/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup of shredded cheese of choice {more mozzarella, pepper jack, cheddar, etc}
  • 1/2 lb bacon, cooked and crumbled

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Season chicken breasts on both sides with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Spray a 9X13 baking dish with nonstick spray and place chicken in baking dish. Bake for 15-20 minutes.

Heat tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat in medium/large skillet.

In the skillet, add your spinach and sauté allowing spinach to wilt down.  Add in minced garlic, sauté until fragrant. Then add in light cream. Bring to a light boil and remove from heat. Stir in your shredded mozzarella and grated parmesan cheese. Place back onto heat, turn down to simmer and keep stirring until you have a smooth creamy spinach. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Spoon creamed spinach over chicken breasts evenly, then top with crumbled bacon and shredded cheese of choice.

20160822_184843

Place into the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes until chicken cooked through. Then, turn the oven to broil on high and allow cheese to become slightly browned and bubbly. Remove from oven and enjoy!

20160822_191030

This recipe is delicious and easy to make! The best creamed spinach I’ve tasted! So you can try that as a regular side dish!

20160822_191047

Pair it with any side that you fancy. Or just eat it alone, you could do that. You can do anything you want.

20160822_191302

Happy Eating!

Do you have a favorite creamed spinach recipe?

Sausage, Spinach & Ricotta Frittata

Whenever I hear or say frittata, I immediately want to break out into dance, is anyone else with me?

0001

Source

Whether or not the word invites you to move those hips, the aroma of this easy and delicious dish, will definitely have you running to the kitchen!

It’s light, fluffy and packed with some awesome ingredients, that will surely leave you asking for an extra serving!

20160825_174808

I originally saw this recipe on Racheal Ray Show, and adapted it with one tasty ingredient to make it just a little heartier for my dear husband.

It was a complete success and I am looking forward to the leftovers feeding me some breakfast and lunch over the upcoming days!

One of my favorite meals is brinner (breakfast for dinner) and to be absolutely the corniest person you will encounter today, this brinner was a winner!!

20160825_175855

Sausage, Spinach & Ricotta Frittata

Ingredients

  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4-5 Italian sausage links, casings removed
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp dried thyme leaves
  • salt and pepper
  • 6 oz of fresh spinach, chopped
  • 8 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups ricotta
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

Directions

Preheat oven to 375.

In a large ovenproof skillet over medium high heat, add the italian sausage. Break sausage up with a spoon and allow to cook. When mostly browned, add diced onion and saut√© for 2-3 minutes. If there isn’t enough cooking fat/oil in the pan from the sausage, this is when you would want to add a little olive oil.

Next add the minced garlic and thyme, allowing the ingredients to merry together and become fragrant. When the onion is translucent, add the spinach and allow to wilt and cook down.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, the ricotta and parmesan cheese together.  Season with salt, pepper and ground nutmeg.

When the sausage spinach mixture is cooked, pour the egg mixture over the top and evenly spread out the sausage and spinach with a spoon or fork.

Place into the oven and bake for about 20 minutes until the center is just set. Take out of oven, allow to cool or serve right away.

20160825_174820

Serve it along side a salad, or with some toast.

20160825_175906

You won’t feel guilty eating this, which as you already know is my favorite kind of meal!

20160825_175916

Do you have a favorite brinner recipe?

Carrot Cake Loaf

20160815_173243

Since finding out about my own personal struggle with insulin resistance and PCOS, I am on a mission to get my body where it needs to be. Weight loss is never an easy journey, pair that with crazy hormones, it’s been quite a ride.

I am working so hard at breaking this vicious cycle for myself, but in doing so, I can’t and will not give up my love for cooking and baking. Because none of us need to do that!

I have had so much fun in the kitchen, trying new recipes and making our old favorite recipes more low carb friendly for us, and ultimately for you!

I do not believe my joy for food will ever go away, because I can talk, read, write, browse, eat…. all day long. I have made a choice to put the right foods in my body, to make it work the best it can. I have also made a choice to indulge in healthy treats from time to time, that don’t derail me from my goals.

Life is definitely all about moderation, and if you can make your treats healthy for you, you aren’t cheating. You are living!

There are some things you can say that life is not worth living without, if I was dramatic I would say this Carrot Cake Loaf! I personally feel happier knowing I have found a slightly sweet bread that I can put together really fast, that gives me a tasty snack with delicious carrot cake flavor! Carrot cake is one of my favorites, and this did not disappoint! I hope you try it!

Carrot Cake Loaf

Ingredients

  • 2 cups almond flour
  • 3 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup carrots, grated
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup swerve sweetener {or 1/2 cup sugar, honey, etc}
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl and mix together. {almond flour, coconut flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon}

In a mixing bowl, add eggs and swerve sweetener. Mix to combine, then adding coconut oil, unsweetened applesauce and vanilla extract.

Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients in mixing bowl and combine.

Then add grated carrot to batter.

Grease a bread/loaf pan with nonstick spray {butter or coconut oil} and pour batter into pan, spreading evenly.

Place in oven and bake for 30-32 minutes until top is browned and inserted toothpick comes out clean.

20160815_142826

Remove from oven and allow to cool.

20160815_173124

Then it’s time to slice it up and serve!

20160815_173302

It is moist, delicious and just subtly sweet- making it the perfect bread to eat as is, put a little butter on it, or make it into french toast! I think next time, I’ll even drizzle a little cream cheese frosting over it!

20160815_173428

Happy eating!!

Do you have a favorite loaf or bread recipe?

Healthier Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies

20160808_205026

Oh sweet tooth, you are at it again.

Forcing me to research, brainstorm and create a recipe just so you can enjoy one of life’s greatest creations….brownies.

Rich chocolate, fudgey, mouth watering brownies….that don’t cause your body to jump into sugar shock only to retreat into a carb induced coma.

20160808_204713

One of my greatest joys with experimenting in the kitchen, is when my chef husband loves what I’ve made. While he isn’t a tough critic in the sense that he is a food snob, his opinion and years of experience mean something to me. Ratings of 10/10 in anything I make, seriously make me feel proud of what I’m doing.

I think the best creations in the kitchen come from your heart. When you are passionate about what you are doing, it is always going to be a success. The recipe itself may take some tweaking but what is a passion without trying for your own standard of perfection.

20160808_204944

 

With that being said, this is not suppose to be comparable to a real brownie made out of sugar and flour (which are delicious, I might add). This is something different, and to me….better. I have no guilt eating this as a treat. I don’t think you will either. Its rich, dense and full of chocolate flavor.

Healthier Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies

Makes 16 Brownies

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil or butter
  • 2 cups dark chocolate chips {can use sugar free chocolate}
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup swerve sweetener {or 1/2 cup coconut sugar, honey, agave, sugar}
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium microwave safe bowl, add coconut oil (or butter), dark chocolate, and peanut butter. Microwave for 2 minutes until mixture is melted and smooth. Put aside.

In another bowl add eggs, swerve sweetener (or sweetener of choice) and vanilla extract. Mix until combined. Add coconut flour, unsweetened cocoa powder and salt.

When fully combined, add in peanut butter chocolate mixture.

Spray a 8X8 pan with nonstick spray or use parchment paper for easy clean up.

Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth out batter. Place into oven and bake for 30-35 minutes until set and inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to fully cool.

20160808_204641

Cut into 16 squares and enjoy!

Happy Eating!

20160808_205009