Strawberry Banana Muffins

strawberry banana muffins

These muffins are so good!  Oooey and gooey and sweet, with minimal effort to put them together.  They are a hit with the kids as well.  There are two options for making these muffins:

  1. The applesauce replaces any oil or butter you would want, and it gives the muffins a great flavor, but if you feel you want that buttery taste, feel free to use earth balance, which I’ve included in the recipe as well.
  2. The egg replacer works wonderfully to hold it all together, but if you want to make them vegetarian instead, one egg will suffice to make these nice and light and fluffy!  Just omit the water that follows in the ingredient list.
  • 2 Cups Pancake mix
  • 1 cup vanilla milk
  • 1/4 cup applesauce (you can also use vegan butter, such as Earth balance, keep the measurement the same, 1/4 cup)
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed with a fork
  • 1 1/2 tsp Ener-g egg replacer (dry) (if making it non vegan, 1 egg will be enough here, omit the 1 tbsp water)
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 2 dashes Trader Joes Stevia
  • 2 strawberries, cut into 6 slices
  • Coconut oil, for coating the muffin tins

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Add all the ingredients together except for the strawberries and coconut oil in a mixing bowl, and with a hand mixer on high, 5 minutes.  There are going to be some lumps in it because of the bananas, and this is okay!  As long as you don’t see any dry lumps, but of course feel free to mix it a bit more if you feel the need.

with your hand, or a paper towel, spread the coconut oil around the inside of the muffin tins to prevent sticking.  You don’t need that much, just enough to coat the inside of the tins.   Using a spoon, fill the tins with enough mixture to fill 1/3 of the tin.  Don’t overfill it.

unbaked muffins

Place 1 slice of strawberry down the middle of each muffin, and put in the over for 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

 

Enjoy these for breakfast, or for a light afternoon snack.  I’ve been snacking on them all day, but shh don’t tell anyone!  =)

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Vegan Whipped Cream Over a Matcha Green Tea smoothie

vegan whipped cream over a Matcha Green Tea smoothie

This smoothie is energizing, its alkaline, its full of vitamins and nutrients, and its topped with Vegan Whipped cream that anyone can make.  What’s not to like?

 

To make Coconut Whipped cream:

take a can of full fat coconut milk.  Do not shake it.  Open it up, and scrape off the thick part from the top.  Whip it up, add a sweetener (I added stevia and raw cacao)  Place it in a bowl in the fridge over night to set.  Save the coconut water.

 

Matcha Green Tea Smoothie:

  • 1 cup prepared matcha green tea (matcha is a loose powder ceremonial green tea)  put in the fridge over night to let cool.
  • 1  banana
  • 6 Kale leaves
  • 4 Radishes
  • 1/2 cup frozen peaches (or use fresh)
  • 1 cup of the coconut water separated from the coconut cream
  • 1 dash stevia (optional)

Blend it all in a high speed blender.    Top with the coconut whipped  cream, and the sprinkle some Matcha powder on the top.  Enjoy!

 

Zesty Green Detox Smoothie

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I took a real good close up of my smoothie this morning to show you the rich green color.  It looks like a pool of algae!  Most likely because I used algae LOL.

Spirulina is an blue-green algae filled with vitamins and nutrients, such as vitamin A and E.  Its 65% protien, and has all the essential amino acids.  It is used to boost the immune system, fend off allergies, aid in ADHD symptoms, and may even promote good gut flora (probiotic).  Although no human studies have been conducted yet, it has proven to fight the flu virus, certain herpes, and even HIV.

When using spirulina, do so in small doses at first, because it does take a little getting used to.  Today was my first attempt and I only used 1tsp.  I also added raw organic apple cider vinegar which is so useful it should get its own post, and a huge chunk of ginger to mask the flavor.  So honestly, I don’t even taste it.

Green Detox Smoothie Take 2:

  • 1/2 cup raw organic Apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut water
  • 5 dinosaur kale leaves
  • 1 lemon, peeled
  • 1 head broccoli
  • 2 inch peeled ginger
  • 1 apple
  • 3 celery stalks with leaves
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 tsp spirulina (or more for the more adventurous – up to 2 tbsp)
  • Optional: dash stevia

Blend all in a high speed blender until smooth, about 1 minute.  Drink and enjoy!

A few words on ACV (apple cider  vinegar) you want RAW organic (bragg’s is a great brand), not regular apple cider vinegar.  It is the “mother” and has all the enzymes that are lost from processing regular vinegar.

Banana bakedcakes (aka pancakes) Vegan, gluten free

Ahh, the weekend, the time when we have enough leisure time to actually make breakfast.  This morning, as promised on my FB and Twitter page, I bring to you my vegan, gluten free banana pancakes, cooked two ways and smothered with my berry sauce!

My baked pancakes, half eaten!

My bakedcakes, (oven version) half eaten!

I made them two ways, because frankly, I’m lazy and I hate standing over a pan cooking for any length of time.  Plus, the pan version needs oil of some sort, and you guys know how I feel about cooking in oil.  I do occasionally use coconut oil, and this was one of those times.  Coconut oil is anti-microbial and has a host of health benefits, while allowing you to heat it up to high temps without it becoming a carcinogen, but it still raises LDL levels (bad cholesterol) so it should be used sparingly and not often.  On top of all that, the pan version kept falling apart when I flipped it… they stayed together just fine in the oven, and tasted the same.  My son ate the 3 I made in the pan and I ate the the ones from the oven.  The ones from the oven were in fact so good, that you could just eat them the way they are without any sauce, they kind of look like little bread cookies.  I call my oven baked version aptly bakedcakes!

Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1/2 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 tbls agave

Put all the ingredients in a sauce pan and cover it up over medium heat, letting it come to a boil and reduce the berries.  They will start to disintegrate.  After about 10 minutes you can uncover it and let is thicken to the desired consistency.  I let it go another 5 minutes.  Serve over your favorite waffle or pancakes, and keep it in an airtight jar up to 2 weeks.  (Honestly, I don’t even have any left to store after breakfast this morning, my son was licking it off the plate)

Pan version of my pancakes

Pan version of my pancakes

Bakedcakes:

  • 2 mushed bananas
  • 1 tbls chia seeds soaked in 1/3 cup water for 5 minutes
  • 1 cup almond meal flour
  • 1 dash stevia
  • 1/2 tbls baking soda
  • drop of vanilla extract (I didn’t measure, but i’d  say it was 1/2 tsp)
  • 1/2 cup ground flax seed
  • 1/3 cup water

Pre Heat the oven to 350 degrees.  I used my trusty food processor to mix all the ingredients together, but i’m sure you could do it by hand using a fork or a whisk.  I didn’t soak the flax seed in the water this time, I just let it soak up the excess liquid in the batter mix.  So while the oven was preheating, the batter was sitting out for a  few minutes getting itself “together” as it may be lol.  I put some extra flour on a cookie sheet and layed out my pancake batter in little circles, just like I was making cookies.  I let them cook for 15 minutes, flipping once at the last 5 minutes and then they were done!

Oven version of my pancakes

Oven version of my pancakes

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My son enjoying his healthy breakfast!

Green Detox Smoothie

 

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This is not a smoothie for beginners   It tastes a bit like lemonade, at least to me, but for those that are new at more hardcore smoothies, a dash of stevia will help to make it sweeter.  However, a smoothie without all the fruit is a smoothie with less glycemic index.  I added green tea to this smoothie for one reason, and that was because I was running late to get my son to school this morning (first Monday back at school after a week off will do that) and missed my morning cup with lemon.  However, it is optional.

Raw radish is full of vitamin C, b-complex, zinc and phosphorous    The leaves are edible as well, having more protein, vitamin c and calcium then the roots.  If you have a radish with the leaves in tact, by all means add them to the smoothie along with the root.  Radish also helps asthmatics by relieving congestion and airways, and helps cleanse the blood, live and gallbladder   Raw radish should be included in the diet regularly, I often slice it up and put it on my salad, are make matchsticks with them and add them to my nori  wraps.

What some people don’t know is that romaine leaves are a complete protein, and if you are one who worries about oxalates, then romaine is a good alternative to spinach.  Some other nutrients it has are vitamin A and K, manganese, magnesium, copper, prosperous,  selenium (another vital mineral in the treatment of asthma) and zinc.   It blends well with any smoothie, since it has such a light flavor.

Overall, this  is a marvelous detox drink, working to cleanse and purify while aiding digestion.

Green Detox Drink

  • 4 romaine leaves
  • 5 kale leaves
  • 2 red radishes (leaves optional)
  • 1 lemon, peeled
  • 1 inch ginger
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • 1 cup green tea
  • 1 pinapple chunk
  • 1 green apple

Green Coconut Smoothie

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Good morning!  This smoothie is rich and creamy and full of potassium, magnesium, vitamin A, C, K, Iron…Calcium, vitamin D, Omega-3’s, protein …Do I need to go on?  On top of that, this is a filling drink, great for breakfast and a wonderful energizer to help you get through your day.  The high electrolyte content make it ideal for post work as well.

 Green Coconut Smoothie:

  • 1/2 cup grated coconut (I like bob’s red mill)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cups hemp milk
  • 1 banana
  • 1 orange, peeled
  • 6 kale leaves
  • 1 carrot

Soak the coconut in the water for about an hour to moisten it.  The water should all be absorbed by the time you are ready to add it to your blender.  In a high speed blender, add the remaining ingredients and enjoy!  Makes 2 servings (I usually drink the whole thing.)

Banana Mango Beauty Smoothie with Pistachios

Green Smoothie

Green Smoothie (Photo credit: joyosity)

My morning routine goes something like this:  Wake up, make myself a glass of  green tea with freshly squeezed lemon juice, get in the car, take my son to school, come home and make a green smoothie.  Making my morning smoothie is one of my favorite activities.  I feel like I’m a scientist in a lab.  I never quite know what I will put in my blender until I open my fridge.  I never know how it will taste or what color green (or in the case of using beets and blueberries, what color, period) it will turn out.   I just know that it will contain some sort of green veggie and a bit of fruit and that I will probably be drinking two servings.

And everyday I create something new, I think to myself, “I should post this recipe!” And I go to take a picture…and it doesn’t look very appetizing…it just looks…green…I get very discouraged and I don’t post anything at all about my wonderful creation.  So I’ve decided that I just won’t take pictures of them.  The smoothie to the right is not  mine, but if you can picture that same one on a black desk…then you have already seen what I am drinking at this moment.

I will  however, share with you the recipe that I am happily sipping on.  It took a couple tries to get it right, I had to remix it a couple times because the first two tries were a bit unpalatable, even for me.   All of the ingredients are organic.  When eating things raw you not only get more nutrients, but you also get a concentration of pesticides if you are buying non organic.  Of course, do what your budget can afford.  Things like avocado and mango, with a thick skin, have very low rates of pesticides in them.

The beauty smoothie with Pistachios

  • 2 collard green leaves
  • 1/3 cup of Broccoli
  • 1 green apple
  • 2 tbls curly parsley
  • 1 cup hemp milk
  • 1 cup rice milk
  • 10 shelled pistachios (raw)
  • 1 banana
  • 1 red mango
  • 2 dashes of stevia
  • 1 large carrot
  • 4 tbls hemp protein powder

blend altogether in a high speed blender until smooth, about 1 minute.  Enjoy!

 

Adding herbs to your smoothies is an excellent idea, but be careful not to add too much or it will overpower your drink.  Raw parsley, broccoli  and collards are full of vitamins such as vitamin A , which is known as the beauty vitamin, keeping skin, hair and nails healthy,and promoting eye health.  Other vitamins are Vitamin K (which is needed to help absorb other vitamins and keeps our blood clotting) , folate (vital for pregnant women and …well everyone else), and B-vitamins.  Pistachios are very high in antioxidants, and they even help maintain weight….the list goes on and on.  I’ve mentioned before that I don’t really like to go into the details of the vitamins and minerals because THEY ARE ALL VITAL AND GOOD FOR YOU.  You can’t eat a piece of fruit and think, “oh man, I shouldn’t have had that last grape.”  It just doesn’t happen.   You should just know that if it came from the ground, it has something in it that is going to do something helpful in your body.  Unless its oil…or uranium…or lava… LOL okay, so maybe not everything that  comes from the ground is good for you.   But I think you get my point.

Don’t be afraid to add whatever you have on hand to your smoothies.  Be your own mad scientist, get creative, and have fun!  You might just invent the best smoothie ever.

Screenshot from the public domain films Maniac...

Screenshot from the public domain films Maniac (1934) showing Horace B. Carpenter as the character “Dr. Meirschultz” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Vegan Mango Pudding

 

 

chia seed pudding

 

Chia seeds are not just for your favorite planted pet anymore.  These versatile little guys are full of protein  omega-3’s and a whole list of vitamins and minerals.  They can replace eggs in any recipe that calls for one (just put 1 tbls of chia seeds in some water and watch them gel up in about 5 minutes)  Plus they have an added bonus of helping the body detoxify.   The gel, much like the type found in okra and aloe, helps toxins that are not water soluble find a way out of your system.  This “pudding” is super easy to make and is so yummy you might even forget that its a health food!

 

Mango Chia seed Pudding:

 

  • 6 mangoes, peeled and seeded
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut milk (not the can kind, the one sold by the almond milk)
  • 1 very ripe banana (I used an old one I had in the freezer)
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut water
  • 6 tbls chia seeds
  • Bob’s Mill dry coconut shavings

 

Put the  coconut milk, banana, and 3 mangoes in a high speed blender or food processor.  Remove to glass jar or other container with a lid and add the coconut water and chia seeds.  Put the lid on and shake it up.  Now take the 3 remaining mangoes and roughly process them, you want them to be a bit chunky.  Add in the chia seed mixture.  Let sit overnight in the fridge, in the morning it should be the consistency of pudding.  When you’re ready to eat, sprinkle the coconut on top and enjoy.

 

This has a texture of tapioca, and its very sweet without the need for any sugar.  This is so healthy, it can even be used as a breakfast food!  The chia seeds help stabilize blood sugar, preventing cravings while keeping you energized and full all day.  Try serving this to your picky toddler, who if they are anything like mine, loves pudding and hates everything else.

 

 

 

Green (and one not so green) smoothies

I’m going to share a delicious green smoothie recipe that is a great way to start your morning!  Kale and broccoli are super foods, very high in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.  You can get  creative, but try to limit your fruits so that your blood sugar does not spike.  I prefer to make smoothies over juicing, though I own both a vitamix and juicer, because keeping the produce whole retains all the fiber that aids in digestion and keeps us fuller longer.  Also, the fiber keeps us from getting a rush of sugar, which keeps our blood sugar at normal levels, reducing cravings later in the day.

Makes 2 servings:

Not-another-Green Smoothie

  • 1.5 cups pure coconut water
  • 5 kale leaves with stems
  • 1 handful of baby spinach (about 1 cup)
  • 1 peeled kiwi
  • 20 green grapes
  • 1 lime peeled
  • 1/2 cup of diced pineapple
  • 1/2 cucumber with the skin on

Mix all in a blender until smooth (I use a vitamix, so I no longer need a toothpick after I’m done with my breakfast!  It helps to have a really good high speed blender), drink and enjoy!  For extra protein, you can add a serving of protein powder, my favorite is organic hemp protein.  It has less protein then whey or soy but it is easier to digest.

Creamy green smoothie:
Makes 2 Servings

  • 1 cup oat milk
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 5 kale leaves with stem
  • 1 bunch of broccoli florets
  • 1 red apple
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2 oranges
  • 2 large leaves green cabbage
  • 4 tbls hemp protein powder
Mix all in a blender until smooth
For a smoothie that’s just as good, but less green:
 Sweet Beet and blueberry Smoothie:
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 1 peeled red beet
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 pear
  • 1 peeled frozen banana (I peel and freeze them ahead of the time)
  • 1 peeled carrot (if its organic you can skip peeling for added nutrients)
  • 6 kale leaves
  • handful spinach
  • 1/2 cup broccoli florets
  • 4 tbls hemp protein powder
Mix all in a blender until smooth