Now that the crisp fall air has moved into So Cal one of our favorite fall activities is apple picking with the kids! While we haven’t been able to make it back out to the Apple Farms in Oak Glen, CA just yet, we hope to
soon because we’ve got apples on our mind!
This week we indulged in a little autumn cinnamon apple treat and we couldn’t wait to share this protein filled energy bite with you. Can apple pie and healthy go in the same sentence? YES, it sure can! It’s perfect for a grab and go breakfast, school lunches or after work-out energy snack. It’s filled with the goodness of oats, chia seeds, almond butter, and fresh apples! Did we mention that it’s so easy to make too?
An alternative to fresh apples in this recipe is dried or dehydrated apples, but we love using the freshest raw ingredients whenever we can. We should also mention that there’s no limit to what you can add to these energy bites, so go ahead and be creative! There’s no right or wrong in this recipe.
Apple Cinnamon Energy Bites
2 cups organic old-fashioned oats
2 TBSP chia seeds
¾ tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt
½ cup almond butter (or any nut butter)
2 TBSP Bee-free honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 and ½ medium apple (grated)
1. Stir together the dry mixture ingredients in a large bowl.
2. In a smaller bowl, mix the almond butter, bee-free honey and vanilla
3. Add the almond butter mixture to the dry ingredients bowl and thoroughly
mix until fully coated.
4. Stir in grated apple.
5. Scoop a small handful of the mixture and roll it into a ball.
6. Serve immediately or refrigerate for a healthy snack over the next few
Today we combined recipes from two of our favorite food bloggers, Lazy Cat Kitchen and Jess Beautician. Both of these bloggers offer such inspiration for anyone adopting a plant based diet. When we saw the beautiful Vegan Chocolate Mousse Raspberry Tart, by Lazy Cat Kitchen, we could hardly wait to make it! We had heard about aquafaba and this was a good chance to try it. When the recipe asked for a “good quality raspberry jam”, we knew exactly which jam we would make – the chia jam from Jess Beautician! If you haven’t already, please check them out!
Vegan Chocolate Mousse Raspberry Tart
150 g / 1 cup dried dates, halved and pitted
140 g / 1 cup almonds
90 g / 1 cup rolled oats (GF certified if required)
3 tbsp cacao powder
¼ tsp fine sea salt
1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
125 g / 4.5 oz dark (70 % cacao) chocolate
90 ml / ¼ cup + 2 tbsp aquafaba / chickpea brine or from a tin
90 ml / ¼ cup + 2 tbsp coconut cream (separated from full-fat coconut milk)
¼ tsp hot chilli powder, adjust to taste (optional)
240 ml / 1 cup good quality raspberry jam
mini meringue kisses
Place pitted dates in a small bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave them for 10 minutes to soften.
Place almonds and oats in a food processor and grind them both into flour. If you don’t have a powerful food processor, you may want to grind them separately. Transfer ground almonds and oats to a large bowl. Add cacao and salt and mix well.
Squeeze excess moisture out of the dates and place them into the food processor. Process until you get a smooth, sticky mixture. Add them to the dry ingredients and knead by hand until you get a uniform dough.
Finally, add melted coconut oil.
Line a tart tin with a piece of baking paper and line the tin with the dough you’ve just made. Make sure you press it really well so that it’s compacted and holds together well. Pop into the freezer for 10 mins.
Chop your chocolate very finely (unless you are using chocolate chips) and place into a glass bowl together with coconut cream. Place over a water bath (on the lowest heat) and allow the chocolate and coconut cream to melt gently into each other. Do not stir until most of the chocolate has melted, then turn the hob off and allow the rest of the chocolate to melt under the residual heat. Gently mix the two together and add chilli powder at this stage (if using). Chocolate is a temperamental beast to work with, if it happens to seize (gets thick, oily and grainy), see NOTES below. Take the bowl with chocolate off the pot with hot water to allow the chocolate mixture to cool down.
Place room temperature aquafaba in a clean (that’s very important as any grease residue will prevent aquafaba from foaming) glass or metal bowl. Whip it until you achieve stiff peaks – you should be able to invert the bowl and the whipped aquafaba should not budge an inch, if it does it means that it hasn’t been whipped enough.
Make sure chocolate is lower than body temperature before mixing into aquafaba. Gently fold whipped aquafaba into the chocolate ganache – 2 tablespoons of aquafaba at a time.
Take the base out of the freezer and spread the jam on the bottom. Next pour the chocolate layer on top. Let the tin sit at room temperature for around 30 minutes and then pop it into the fridge overnight or for several hours (at least) to set.
Decorate and cut into slices. Store in the fridge and consume within 1-2 days.
The original recipe called for Blueberries, but we used raspberries instead.
2 cups raspberry, defrosted from frozen
3 tbsp chia seeds
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp lemon juice
Make the Blueberry Chia Jam by placing the defrosted blueberries in a bowl, along with the chia seeds, maple syrup and lemon juice. Mash with a potato masher and ensure it is mixed well then put to the side to thicken for around 10 minutes.
I’m not sure about you, but as moms trying to raise healthy kids, we are always looking for recipes that curb that sweet tooth, but remain somewhat healthy too. We’ve made chia puddings before, but for some, the texture of the chia wasn’t appealing. In this recipe, the chia seeds are blended with the avocado and the texture is nice and smooth, and more like a mousse! This Chocolate Avocado Mousse totally hits the spot and is even a hit with our kids. We posted a similar recipe a couple of years ago, but this new version is even better!
Once you try it, you might think that it seems too decadent because it tastes amazing! However, it’s packed with protein, healthy fats, anti-oxidants, and fiber. So don’t worry…just enjoy! Oh, and one more thing…it’s really easy to make even on short notice!
Chocolate Avocado Mousse
2 cups Ingredients:
12 oz plant or nut based of choice (we used organic almond milk)
1/4 cup organic chia seeds
1 small avocado
1/4 cup maple syrup (we used grade B)
3 Tablespoons unsweetened cacao powder
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Add all ingredients to your blender and blend on the highest speed until smooth.
Pour into 1 large container or 4 small 4-oz containers and store in refrigerator for 1-3 hours or until thick and creamy like mousse. You can also put it into the freezer for 1-2 hours and it’s more ice cream like.
Eat alone or top with some fruit, vegan whipped cream, oreos, or nut butter. It’s up to you!
You can add any toppings to the mousse. We added fruit, cacao nibs, nut butter (peanut butter is really yummy), and vegan marshmallows (you can buy these at Trader Joes).
This week marks the beginning of a holiday season that lasts for about 6 weeks. We’ve been a little stressed thinking how to get through this season without completely abandoning our clean eating diets that we’ve worked so hard to follow. We decided that if we are going to indulge in a dessert, it should at least have fresh ingredients and be as healthy as possible. This recipe created by “natural girl modern world” is not only vegan and gluten free, but it is super rich, yummy, not too sweet and the perfect dessert that can be enjoyed by everyone! It’s not a simple recipe and does take some time to make it, but the effort is well worth it!
Raw Cacao Powder: The original recipe called for cocoa powder, but we exchanged this ingredient to a healthier raw cacao powder. Raw cacao powder is extremely high in antioxidants, which prevents premature aging. It is a great source of magnesium, iron, calcium and potassium. It also reduces blood pressure and insulin resistance, eases PMS issues and improves mood.
Hazelnuts: Aside from being a great source of fiber, they contain a large amount of monounsaturated fatty acids, which help to reduce LDL cholesterol and increase HDL cholesterol. They are full of antioxidants and brain boosting elements and contribute to healthy skin and hair due to high levels of Vitamin E.
Coconut: We’ve talked about the many health benefits of coconut before, but it’s always nice to revisit the amazing benefits of coconut. Coconut lowers cholesterol, improves digestion, wards off wrinkles, stabilizes glucose levels, fights viruses and infections, builds cells, regulates hormones, increases thyroid production, increases metabolism, and staves off memory loss.
We recommend that you read the instructions all the way through before you try to recreate this recipe. It takes a little bit of prep time; for example, the coconut cans need to be chilled in the refrigerator and the cashews need to be soaked ahead of time.
VEGAN CHOCOLATE COCONUT CREAM PIE
Chocolate hazelnut crust:
2/3 cup oats
2/3 cup hazelnuts, raw
1 cup shredded coconut, unsweetened
3 tablespoons cacao powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup maple syrup
Chocolate cream filling:
1 can coconut milk (13.5 oz / 400 ml can), divided
1/4 – 1/2 cup non-dairy milk
1/3 cup arrowroot powder (1.3oz / 35 g)*
2/3 cup cashews (soaked 4-12 hours, rinsed well)
3/4 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup cacao powder
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil
Coconut whipped cream:
1 can coconut milk (13.5 oz / 400 ml can), refrigerated overnight or ideally ~24 hours
2-3 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Optional – Toasted coconut flakes, for garnish**
Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a food processor, blend oats until the texture of coarse sand. Add hazelnuts and blend until the nuts are a crumb-like texture. Add coconut, cacao powder and salt. Pulse to mix. Pour in the melted coconut oil and maple syrup, then pulse until well incorporated.
Prepare a 9″ pie dish (use a non-stick pan or line bottom with parchment). Pour the mixture into the pie shell and form the crust with your fingers. Press the crust together very firmly so it holds together. Gently prick the bottom of the crust ~15 times with a fork to allow air to escape when baking. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes.
While the crust cooks, prepare the filling. Pour 1 cup of canned coconut milk into a medium sized bowl. Add arrowroot powder and whisk thoroughly to remove all lumps. Set aside for later.
Measure the remaining liquid in the coconut milk can (it should be ~1/2 cup – 3/4 cup). Use the non-dairy milk to top-up the balance to a total of 1 cup (meaning you would need to add 1/4 cup – 1/2 cup). Add the liquid to a blender with cashews, maple syrup, cacao powder, vanilla and salt. Blend until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
Transfer the mixture to a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a gentle simmer, whisking as it heats. Once the mixture is simmering, reduce heat to low. Pour in the arrowroot and coconut milk slurry and whisk vigorously to combine. Continue whisking for 5-10 minutes until the mixture thickens. Once it reaches a pudding-like texture, remove from heat. Add coconut oil and whisk it in until the mixture becomes glossy. Pour the mixture into the prepared crust. Refrigerate until firm (~4 hours).
To make the coconut whipped cream, open the chilled can of coconut milk. The thick coconut flesh/fat should have separated from the liquid. Scoop out the coconut solids and add to a large mixing bowl. The remaining liquid can be stored in the fridge for another use. Using electric beaters, beat the coconut on medium-high speed. It should take ~1-2 minutes to fluff up. Add the vanilla and maple syrup, to taste. Beat for another ~30 seconds to incorporate.
When ready to serve, spread whipped coconut cream over the prepared pie. Top with toasted coconut flakes (optional) and serve.
*Similar to measuring out flour, make sure you fluff out the arrowroot powder before scooping it into a measuring cup – then level it off with a knife. For most accurate measurements use a kitchen scale.
**Toasted coconut flakes add a nice touch but are completely optional. Bake 1/4 cup of large coconut flakes in the oven at 325°F for 5-10 minutes. Stir to encourage even browning.
Credits: Author: Jill Uechi // Recipe and Photography: Katelyn Guerrero
Today seemed like a good day to post our green pudding recipe. We’ve been loving chia seeds lately and wanted to experiment with a chia seed dessert. This started out as a smoothie, but ended up more like a pudding, which was a nice surprise. The avocado gives a creamy almost whipped consistency, while the chia seeds add that gummy-like texture.