Lemony Coconut Clusters [vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, nut-free, soy-free)

LemonCoconutClusters1I threw these together one morning when I knew my green smoothie wasn’t going to be enough.  I just needed something to chew and help me feel satiated.  These little bundles did the trick. If you’re looking for light, airy and fluffy, run away.  They are dense, fiber-filled clusters of lemony, oaty goodness.  I love oats, and I adore lemon, especially during warm months, so the combo seemed like a good fit.  Just zesting lemons instantly elevates my mood so I especially love dishes that call for lemon.  This recipe is super easy and quick to make, and very healthy consisting of healthy, whole foods.  These are every bit as good without coconut so if you don’t care for it or can’t have it, feel free to omit.  Make sure your bananas are very ripe; if they aren’t you may need to add more than the called-for 1 tablespoon of maple syrup.

Enjoy!

Lemon Blueberry Loaf [gluten-free + vegan + oil-free]

LemonLoaf2 This was one of those recipes in which I had a craving for flavor (in this case, lemon) and a new dish was born.  Yummy! I’ve been experimenting more and more with aquafaba, the juice from canned chickpeas, and really liking the results.

It looks like there are a lot of ingredients here but a lot of them are spices.  It really isn’t any more labor intensive than any other loaf, muffin or cookie recipe I’ve got.  The key is to put the blueberries in the bottom of the loaf pan so that when it cools and you flip it over, you have a yummy, dark purple blueberry topping.  Cool looking and even better tasting.

Blender Pancakes [g/f + vegan + no flour + no oil)

BlenderPancakesThese babies were created when I just threw a bunch of pancake-related items in my Vitamix.  I didn’t feel like measuring out the flour and I figured using rolled oats would work, blended along with everything else.  And work it did!  Yummy.  Easy to make, healthy and delicious.

Feel free to add chocolate chips, blueberries or chopped/sliced bananas to the batter once it’s poured onto the griddle.

Pumpkin Spice Brownies || vegan | gluten-free | oil-free

PumpkinSwirlBrownies2

November 4, 2015

CHOCOLATE!

People are coo coo for cocoa.

Me? I like it.  Sure.

But I wouldn’t consider selling my offspring for the last bar on earth as some people I know might.  It’s good.  I enjoy a quality piece of dark chocolate or a chocolatey dessert as much as the next girl, but when I like chocolate best is when it’s paired with something else, for example, peanut butter, raspberry, or in this case PUMPKIN!

If you’ve never had chocolate and pumpkin together, you’ve been missing out! The warm spices we associate with pumpkin taste great with the rich chocolate.  This recipe calls for healthy whole foods like black beans and pumpkin, uses very little flour, and no refined sugar or oil, and no eggs or dairy of course.  The only not-so-healthy part is the chocolate chips but we only use 1/4 cup.  I really like to use the Wonderslim cocoa powder as it’s lower in fat and caffeine than typical cocoa powder.PumpkinSwirlBrownies3

Go ahead, make these.

And try not to eat the whole pan.

I dare ya.

WAFFLES || vegan | gluten-free | oil-free

waffles August 28, 2015

I got a Waring-Pro double waffle maker a few years ago and have only used it twice.  I just couldn’t find a waffle recipe to my liking.  The first one was a disaster and the second just okay.  For my third attempt I scoured the internet and found several vegan recipes but they either contained oil, had bad reviews or weren’t gluten-free.  For the record, I don’t believe wheat/gluten is the evil food many people make it out to be but I seem to have a sensitivity so I go without, which is really no big deal. When done right, it really does force one to make healthier choices.  Which is why most people feel better and lose weight after cutting it out of their diet; not necessarily because gluten was making them heavy or feel badly but because by cutting it out they eliminated processed foods and crap.  But I digress….we are supposed to be talking about tasty waffles here, not gluten.

As I was saying, I couldn’t find a good waffle recipe so I took a chance and made one up, and man was I happy I did! These waffles came out crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.  I did have to spray the waffle iron with cooking spray – you just can’t get away from that; trust me, I know this from experience.  So have at it! I hope these work out as well for you as they did for me.

Double Chocolate Chip Cookies || vegan | gluten-free | oil-free

IMG_9328Soft, chewy, gooey and chocolatey – that’s what these cookies are. Best part is they are a sinful tasting treat without the sin (maybe just a little bit).  Of course there is no oil or butter in these little gems, but I also tried to keep the flour, sugar and fat low.  You’ll notice the recipe calls for 2 med-large bananas.  As such there is a very small banana taste…very slight though.  If you aren’t a banana fan (I simply cannot imagine!), try using only one banana and replacing the other with 1/2 cup applesauce.  I haven’t tried this so I can’t say exactly what the end result would be, but it’s worth a try.

Enjoy your chocolatey goodness!

Happy New Year AND my guest blog post at Yummly.com featuring my delicious Zucchini Oat Muffins Recipe

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!  I hope you all had wonderful holidays and are getting back into the groove, ready to take on 2014!  It sure got here quickly, didn’t it?  For those of you who have made a resolution to eat better (and, let’s be honest, who hasn’t), I’m hoping you will utilize my website more often.  I have big plans to revamp and improve it, making it easier for recipe searches, etc.  As well, I begin my plant-based cooking school this month and hope to come up with lots of new dishes.  Let’s get things started off right with a low-fat, gluten-free, vegan, tasty zucchini muffin recipe (see below).

I came up with these on a Sunday morning when I was feeling that creative cooking bug that pokes at me so often.  Seemed like a good time to create a muffin of some kind.  I opened the fridge to seek inspiration only to have the zucchinis practically throwing themselves at me.  Hence this Zucchini Oat Muffin recipe was born.  Many recipes I come up with require tweaking and a second or third go around before I can share, but not this one! I got lucky first time around.  And now you’re getting lucky!

For this recipe, I used a combination of gluten-free flour (I really like Trader Joe’s brand)  and oat flour made with certified gluten-free oats.  You can make your own oat flour by using your blender to grind the oats.  Super easy! These muffins are only slightly sweet and are especially delicious warmed, with a TINY bit of vegan butter if you’re feeling dangerous, (and I was).   🙂 I find these keep best refrigerated after the first day, wrapped in a cloth napkin.  Also, if you are feeling adventurous, sub some of the zucchini with carrot!

Feel free to leave out the walnuts if you don’t like them or are eating an extra low-fat diet.  I love their flavor and texture in this dish, and the nice dose of Omega 3’s they (and the chia seeds) provide.  Enjoy!!

I’ve posted this recipe to Yummly.com as a guest blogger.  Please visit my post at http://blog.yummly.com/blog/2014/01/healthy-vegan-gluten-free-zucchini-oat-muffins/  Enjoy!!

Approximate nutritional info: with walnuts – 153 cals, 3.75 fat grams; without walnuts -125 calories, 1 fat gram.

UPDATE: I made these muffins with ALL oat flour when I was out of gluten-free all purpose and they were great!! 

Pumpkin-Spice Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Pumpkin-Spice Cupcakes. Vegan. Gluten-free. Oil-free*

I know.  It’s getting a little ridiculous.  Another pumpkin recipe.  I can’t help it! I told you I love all things pumpkin.  The season is short – I must embrace it!

So, I made a pumpkin-spice cake for my sister’s birthday this past week.  It was really good.  The next day I tweaked the recipe just a bit and made delicious cupcakes.  The next day I tweaked it even more, making them gluten-free, and a sharable recipe was born!

If you don’t care to make these cupcakes gluten-free, whole wheat pastry flour is fine.  Also, use 1 TBS pumpkin pie spice if you’d rather not bother measuring out the cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, ginger and cloves.

I don’t generally make or eat things that are frosted due to the high fat content of frosting, even if it is vegan, but I’ve managed to keep the fat pretty low on these by only using no more than 1 tablespoon of frosting per cupcake, which is plenty and just right.  Still, these are a treat and not something I’d recommend be eaten regularly.  🙂

*Oil-free if left unfrosted. The cupcake itself is oil/fat-free but Tofutti Cream Cheese is made with oil.

Chocolate Chip Banana Bites

Chocolate Chip Banana Bites. Vegan. Oil-free. Low-fat. Gluten-free*

A few ingredients and a couple of really ripe bananas is all you need for this easy recipe.  These little bites are dense and delicious!  They’re also wheat free (gluten-free if using certified gluten-free oat flour), and low-fat.  I recently substituted dried cranberries for the chocolate chips for a friend who doesn’t like chocolate (can you imagine?).  They were delicious even without the chocolate chips!

The only problem with these is that they don’t last long when I make them.

 

*gluten-free when using certified gluten-free oat flour