HEALTHY APPLE CARROT MUFFINS [PALEO, DAIRY FREE]

HEALTH APPLE CARROT MUFFINS

These Healthy Apple Carrot Muffins will blow you away with just the right amount of crunch at the top and moistness on the inside! Filled with goodies like chia seeds & hemp hearts. They have tons of fiber as well as nutrients to fill in any gaps you may be missing.

Made without any added sweeteners, with just some shredded apples & carrots for the sweet aspect. And also, completely grain-free as they are made with almond flour. Good for anyone with gluten intolerance or following a paleo diet. A great pre-workout snack, breakfast on the go, or just a quick bite before you are able to make a complete meal. Go on now, enjoy yourself!

APPLE & CARROT SUPERFOOD MUFFINS [PALEO, DAIRY FREE]

APPLE & CARROT SUPERFOOD MUFFINS [PALEO, DAIRY FREE]

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Line your muffin pan with parchment paper muffin liners.
  2. Mix the chia seeds with the coconut milk & melted coconut oil. Add in the eggs and whisk everything together.
  3. Add in the almond flour, hemp hearts, apples, carrots and raisins and give everything a good mix to blend everything together.
  4. Scoop mixture into muffin liners, pop in the oven for 35-45minutes, according to your oven.
  5. Take out of oven, and let cool before serving.
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APPLE CARROT MUFFIN

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RANCH CHICKEN TENDERS [DAIRY + GLUTEN & GRAIN FREE]

RANCH CHICKEN TENDER - Dairy, gluten, grain free

The thought of chicken tenders and ketchup sure doesn’t bring up images of a healthy meal, does it? I’m here to change that image! These Ranch Chicken Tenders are not only a healthy option, but also one that is dairy, gluten and also grain free! It will suit all of your friends who have gluten or dairy sensitivities and those eating a Paleo diet. Go right ahead – try them yourself.

Oh and hello to a new kid favorite!

RANCH CHICKEN TENDER - Dairy, gluten, grain free

RECIPE

GRAIN FREE RANCH CHICKEN TENDERS

GRAIN FREE RANCH CHICKEN TENDERS

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Toss the chicken tender pieces with the ranch dressing and set in fridge to marinate between 30mins - 2 hours.
  2. Take them out of the fridge.
  3. Beat the eggs in a bowl.
  4. Mix the dry ingredients in another bowl.
  5. Heat your skillet and pout in desired amount of oil to it.
  6. Once the skillet is hot, toss the chicken tenders one by one in the egg mixture followed by the dry cassava & spice mixture and put into the pan.
  7. Pan fry 3-5 minutes on each side. (Cooking times will vary according to thickness of your chicken)
  8. Serve warm with Tessemae's Ketchup.
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RANCH CHICKEN TENDER - Dairy, gluten, grain free

 

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CRISPY CURRY DILL CHICKEN

Crispy Curry Dill Chicken

There are those boneless and skinless types of people. And then there is me – all about the skin, the crispier the better. All about the bones – reused into a flavorful bone broth. This spatchcock chicken recipe is quick and mighty tasty. Crispy Curry Dill Chicken is how you get people to ask for seconds – if there will be any.

If spatchcock chicken seems intimidating, I urge you to just try it once – you might be pleasantly surprised at how simple it is, and also how much quicker your bird is ready to be eaten! For a well-detailed post on how to do it, reference The Food Lab’s post.

CRISPY CURRY DILL CHICKEN

CRISPY CURRY DILL CHICKEN

Ingredients

  • 1 4-5lb pastured chicken
  • 3tbsp ghee
  • 3 tbsp dill fresh or dried
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 475F.
  2. Prepare the curry dill ghee first by mixing the dill, curry powder, salt & pepper, and the ghee (you may want to melt it down a bit if it is solid hard, but most ghee is very workable).
  3. Wash and dry the chicken.
  4. Cut the back of the chicken out and prepare the bird chest up in front of you.
  5. Carefully separate the skin & meat on the chicken breast as well as the thighs.
  6. Once the skin is separated, stick the ghee mixture underneath the skin and spread around to try to cover as much surface area as possible. If there is leftover ghee you can rub the top of the bird as well as areas that you could not separate the skin from the bird - like the wings.
  7. Place the chicken on a lined baking sheet breast side up, tuck the wings under so they don't completely dry out while cooking. Pop in the oven for 45-50 minutes.
  8. You want the temperature of the thighs to register 175F and the breast 150-160F once done cooking.
  9. Take out, cut up, and serve while warm and crispy.
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Crispy Curry Dill Chicken

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TOMATO VEGGIE RICE

Tomato Veggie Rice

What tastes better than a fluffy, flavorful bowl of rice as a side to any good meal? Maybe one that is flavored with vegetables & also a kid favorite! In this post, I will share my Tomato Veggie Rice recipe that you and your kids will love. It’s simple to make, the vegetables are pulsed in a processor before being mixed with the rice – masking any textural issues some kids have, while still providing a delicious alternative to the regular bowl of rice. Enjoy!

TOMATO VEGGIE RICE

TOMATO VEGGIE RICE

Ingredients

  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of crushed garlic
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 2 bell peppers of choice, diced
  • big handful of parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 cups cooked rice

Instructions

  1. Cook rice and set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add in the onions and cook down a few minutes before adding in the garlic. Cook for another minute and add in the spices so they have a chance to become fragrant and open up their full body flavor.
  3. Add the chopped bell peppers cook a few minutes before adding in the chopped tomatoes.
  4. Heat everything through, top with the chopped parsley.
  5. Transfer contents into a blender or food processor and pulse a few times until it reaches the consistency that you prefer.
  6. Mix the vegetable mixture with the rice, plate and serve.
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TOMATO VEGGIE RICE PIN

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GRAIN FREE FIG GALETTE

FIG GALLETTEDid you hear that autumn is knocking at our doors and pushing summer out of it? But did you also hear that figs actually have a second crop in early fall? I heard, and so I hopped and skipped over to the kitchen and baked up this buttery Grain Free Fig Galette. And now I’m going to share the recipe with you.

I love eating seasonally.  So it’s only natural that pie also has a season, right? Well.. the season may last a bit longer than usual growing seasons do. After the fall crispness always comes the cool winter, and we all need a little bit of a buttery crust along with our tea to keep our hearts and bellies happy.

Enough joking here – let’s talk about the crust of this galette. It’s gluten-free as well as grain free. And it doesn’t require any beautifully shaped creations to come together. Just a good old rolling pin (or bottle) and some more work with your hands. Personally, I think the messier it looks afterward, the better it tastes.

FIG GALLETTE

Try it warm out of the oven, but save some for a later time – if you manage, it tends to be hard to do at our place. I find that the flavors really infuse the crust when it sits in the fridge for a bit.

Feel free to swap the figs with another fruit of your choosing, but just beware – some release a lot more liquid and may make the crust a bit soggy. Or try it with figs. They are such a great tasting fruit & they are also so good for you. If you missed my PSA on figs, you can find it here.

I want to know if you make this, so drop me a comment down below and let me know how you like it!

GRAIN FREE FIG GALETTE

GRAIN FREE FIG GALETTE

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. In a food processor mix together the dry ingredients very briefly.
  2. While the processor is running add in the honey and butter one tablespoon at a time. Allow the dough to mix together until it starts to clump into a ball.
  3. Grab a piece of plastic wrap and put the ball of dough in there. Cool in the fridge for two hours.
  4. In the meantime, right before you grab the dough out of the fridge, make the filling by cutting up the figs and mixing them with the cassava flour & sweetener if using any.
  5. Preheat the oven to 325F.
  6. Take the dough out of the fridge and put on top of a piece of parchment paper, flatten a bit with your hand and place another piece of parchment paper on top. Roll out the dough into a circle (or whatever shape you choose, just try to make sure the thickness is pretty equal all around).
  7. In the middle of your rolled out dough place the filling leaving at least two inches of space around it. Fold the edges of the dough over the filling. Place the galette with the parchment paper on top of a baking sheet.
  8. Crack an egg into a bowl and whisk together and lightly brush the sides of the galette with it. Place into the preheated oven and bake for 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
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GRAIN FREE FIG GALETTE

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COTTAGE CHEESE BAKE

Cottage Cheese Bake – one of the simplest recipes you can make. Also, one that is filled with good protein & fats. What more could you want? Well, besides it being kiddo approved, which it is. Probably nothing can beat that.

Cottage cheese – the food of my childhood. Well, except the one from my childhood was not like the one I know so well now. I grew up in Lithuania, and back there, the cottage cheese is a little bit different. It doesn’t come with liquid and is usually in a block form of sorts. It even sometimes comes flavored with cumin or caraway seeds. The latter which I really disliked, something about those little seeds – I even remember picking them out from bread – no easy task, let me just say!

But this isn’t at all about bread or little seeds. This post is about one of my favorite childhood dishes that my mom used to make – a simple Cottage Cheese Bake. However, knowing me, I went a step further and made it healthy. Or at least a lot healthier than the original, which contains quite a bit of sugar as well as polenta.

My version of the Cottage Cheese Bake is definitely gluten-free, but it is even a step further by being grain free. Sugar is not seen anywhere in it, but that should have been a given from the start – I really do try to limit mine and my family’s sugar intake when I can. You can optionally include some liquid stevia to sweeten it up a bit, or maybe even some natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup if you’d like. Or you can save those for topping once it’s cooked and on your plate. I’ll leave that up to you.

Cottage Cheese Bake

My favorite thing about this? It takes one bowl to mix everything together. It looks almost like a pie/cake, it smells heavenly, and is filling and full of healthy proteins and fats. Oh, and did I mention the probiotics? No, I forgot to tell you about that part. They come from the cultured cottage cheese I use in most of my recipes that require it.

Nancy’s Yogurt is by far one of my favorite dairy companies. Our family gets’s our actual cow’s milk and goat milk from being a part of a local herd share. However, we don’t get enough milk to make our own dairy products and let’s be real here, I truly don’t have THAT much time on my hands. So enter the next best thing – Nancy’s.

We have been loving on Nancy’s products for quite a while now, but it wasn’t until my little one started to show an increasing interest in dairy that I truly made the switch to their line. They have so many products to choose from, with our favorites being the whole milk cottage cheese & the cream cheese. Ah – have you ever made two ingredient crepes – cream cheese & egg? You might want to try it out! So good!

Oh, and Nancy’s is based out of (or right next to, but who’s actually looking) Eugene, Oregon – one of my all time FAVORITE places.  If I wasn’t sold on the fact that they feed my families guts with healthy probiotics – I’m sold on their location. I know that it rains PLENTY there, and I’m sure those cows get some delicious green pastures to chow on. Plus part of their creamery runs on solar – yup, you read that right, solar – in Oregon. Green pastures, sustainability, and healthy guts – all great check marks in my book.

Cottage Cheese Bake

Okay, I won’t keep you from making this easy as pie – or bake Cottage Cheese Bake any longer. It’s simple, it’s quick, and it’s delicious.

Let me know in the comments below if you try to make it and what you add to yours? I made our last batch with half of it containing raisins and the other half without. My little one will eat almost anything that has raisins in it. Or at least pick them out, kind of like I did with the seeds and bread – except he actually eats them. Hah, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

COTTAGE CHEESE BAKE

COTTAGE CHEESE BAKE

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. If your cottage cheese container has a lot of liquid, feel free to strain it.
  3. In a large mixing bowl combine the cottage cheese and the eggs and mix together.
  4. Add in the coconut & almond flours and mix together.
  5. Add in the vanilla and the optional stevia & raisins if using and mix one more time.
  6. Grease your preffered dish pan and spoon the mixture into it.
  7. Bake for 45 minutes, take out of the oven and cool a bit before serving.
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COTTAGE CHEESE BAKE

 

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ZUCCHINI NOODLE CAPRESE W/ A COLLAGEN PESTO

This week I am sharing one of my summer favorites – a Zucchini Noodle Caprese w/ a Collagen Pesto! A warm and light summer dish to wrap up the summer veggie season.

Zucchini Noodle Caprese w/ a Collagen Pesto

Summer is nearing an end and boy am I one happy camper! We experienced some historically extreme summer heat this year. With locals even telling us that they have never in their lives spent living here have experienced any of this. 

Camino Cove
Beautiful, cool mornings are finally here.

Luckily for us, we can already smell autumn! And see it in nature too! Although the weather forecast is still showing 90’s next week – I’ll keep pretending that it’s not the case.  

When I moved away from Chicago to live in California, I remember my biggest reason for it being – the weather. The winters in Chicago had been tough and long. And the summers humid and uncomfortable. So I was looking forward to no more snow and mild heat. Well seems that I didn’t account for the fact that I will eventually keep moving north from Orange County all the way to Sacramento. 

Camino Cove
Looking forward to spending more time in nature this fall!

But hey – silver lining – we’re hoping to keep moving even more north. Oregon, Washington… Who knows at this point. Life can be so different from what you “plan” it to be. I just know that we are open to it all. As well as the weather, we are open to the change in seasons. Surprisingly the one thing I was adamant about running away, is the one thing I miss so dearly.

 

But enough small talk about the weather. Let’s continue our summer vegetable conversation! Remember my post about seasonal veggies? If you haven’t read it just yet – you can find it here. Well, zucchini and tomatoes are two of the most abundant summer vegetables! 

Zucchini Noodle Caprese w/ a Collagen Pesto

It turns out that a lot of vegetables cannot grow in this heat (I don’t blame them). So once it cools down, which it finally has – you finally get to see the produce flourish. This has happened with my entire garden. The tomatoes that were green for months or small are now pouring in with abundance. The zucchini is growing big and strong too! Zucchini Noodle Caprese w/ a Collagen Pesto

This can only mean one thing – recipes to finish off the season. Light, summer-y ones, but already warm – as to remind your body that it will get nourished in the cool of the fall. 

Zucchini Noodle Caprese w/ a Collagen Pesto

I was inspired to create this recipe with a twist of added protein from my favorite collagen peptides. These days I try to put them in anything and everything. It is such a great way to boost your protein intake with your meals. Plus SO many health benefits for them too! Think super strong hair, speedy nail growth & beautiful skin! 

This recipe features my highly loved Collagen Peptides in not one, but TWO parts of it! So this definitely packs a nice protein content. Also if you do now own a spiralizer, you could always invest in one – or save yourself another device in the kitchen you can just peel the zucchini into small peels with a vegetable peeler. Or chop it up however you would like. If however, you are still wanting zucchini noddles – they are plentiful in most health food stores these days. Whole Foods carries them and I believe Trader Joe’s does as well. 

Zucchini Noodle Caprese w/ a Collagen Pesto

Alright, I won’t keep you longer. Let’s get to cooking! 

P.S. My kiddo loved this recipe, so maybe yours will too! Let me know in the comments below if you try it out and what you think of it.

ZUCCHINI NOODLE CAPRESE W/ COLLAGEN PESTO

ZUCCHINI NOODLE CAPRESE W/ COLLAGEN PESTO

Ingredients

    Pesto:
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 cup pecans
  • 2 cups basil
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 scoops collagen peptides
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Main dish:
  • 2 large spiraled zucchini
  • 6oz mozzarela
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • Balsamic drizzle:
  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 scoops collagen peptides

Instructions

    Pesto:
  1. Add all of the ingredients into a food processor and process until desired consistency is reached. If you prefer to buy your pesto already made - you can just mix in the collagen peptides into it with a spoon.
  2. Note: You will have pesto left over - unless you’re a huge fan if it - then you won’t, ha.
  3. Main dish:
  4. Wash your zucchini and spiralize it.
  5. If buying remade, no need to do anything.
  6. Preheat your oven to 400F, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  7. Wash and cut your cherry tomatoes in half and toss on the baking sheet.
  8. Cover with desired amount of salt and pepper as well as the avocado oil. Toss everything together and spread out evenly.
  9. Pop into the oven for 15 minutes or so.
  10. In the meantime chop up your mozzarella and set it aside.
  11. For the glaze:
  12. Get out a sauce pan and pour in the vinegar and collagen peptides in there.
  13. Mix it up and make sure everything dissolves.
  14. Add the honey and turn the heat on.
  15. Bring the sauce to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer.
  16. Simmer it until the sauce reduces down by half and becomes thicker than previously.
  17. Set aside.
  18. To bring everything together:
  19. Heat up a large skillet and add in your zucchini noodles followed by your desired amount of pesto.
  20. Mix everything together and cook the noodles down a bit.
  21. Remember that zucchini emits a lot of water, and will get soggy if overcooked. I cooked mine maybe a minute or two to keep it as al dente as possible.
  22. Toss cooked zucchini into a large bowl, take tomatoes out of the oven and toss them along with the mozzarella into the same bowl.
  23. Mix everything together and plate.
  24. Top with the balsamic drizzle.
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ZUCCHINI NODDLE CAPRESE W A COLLAGEN PESTO

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5 PLUS 1 CASHEW BALLS – TWO WAYS

Simple recipes are where it’s at during busy days –  and that is exactly how these 5 plus 1 Cashew Balls were born. But we’ll get to that a bit later.

This week has been tough. I feel like it’s partly due to the fact that the light during the day is shortening and part the fact that the heat is NOT going anywhere. Contrary to what you might think, it’s actually picking back up and making me grateful for AC like I’ve never been before in my life.

Some of you may not know me at all, so I’ll let you in on a secret – I am not a fan of the heat. I really don’t think I would be able to live on a tropical island on a beach. The idea sounds lovely, but the reality of it is that I just don’t do well in heat. My dream would be a cabin in a forest where we the seasons are mild, but most definitely all there.

One of my favorite hiking spots in Eugene, OR – Spencer’s Butte. I can just imagine living in a forest like such with surroundings like these!

So with the days getting shorter, my mind is used to the weather being cooler, and the ability to spend time outdoors lengthening, but sadly that is not the case. Ah, I guess I get to just dream of the hikes and camping trips for a little bit longer.

Speaking of camping, what has everyone got planned for this long Labor Day weekend? We were toying with the idea of going camping, but have changed our minds with the weather being so hot. However, we do hope to make it out to a river or a lake for a day in the water!

So as I’ve mentioned before, this week has been a little tough and only naturally (or more so from being used to turning to food when the going gets rough, *need to work on that, I know*) I wanted something delicious, chocolatey, and quick! So I went to work – and created just the thing!

5 + 1 Cashew Balls

One of my most favorite things is when I come up with a recipe as simple as can be and it also has minimal ingredients! This one is just that. It’s literary five ingredients plus the one you want it to taste most like – how awesome is that.

5 + 1 Cashew Balls

Knowing me – I wanted chocolate, but my husband requested blueberry – and so the 5 Plus 1 Cashew Balls – Two Ways was born. Simple, easy to make, and quick to be gone too! My little one loved them as well – both flavors were a hit with him! Hope you enjoy them, and let me know if you try any different flavors.

5 PLUS 1 CASHEW BALLS – TWO WAYS

5 PLUS 1 CASHEW BALLS – TWO WAYS

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. To soak the cashews you can cover them with water the night before, or do a hot soak(boiling water poured over the cashews) for an hour before you want to make the balls.
  2. Pour off the water from the cashews and rinse.
  3. Put the cashews, coconut shreds, coconut oil, vanilla powder, and dates into a food processor.
  4. Process everything until it starts to clump into one big chunk (might take a few minutes, depending on your food processor).
  5. Make sure to scrape the sides every now and again to get everything incorporated well.
  6. If making the two flavors, open it up and split the ball into two, leaving one in the food processor.
  7. Add in your flavor and let the processor go again - if you find the the mixture is not blending well, you can always add a bit more coconut oil or a teaspoon or so of water.
  8. Once it is blended well, grab a baking sheet or plate.
  9. Wet your hands and roll little balls from the mixture and place on your surface.
  10. If you would like you can cover the blueberry balls with coconut and the chocolate ones with cacao by rolling them in that before placing on your surface.
  11. If making another flavor, wash the container and dry quickly (or just do it in the one already if you don't mind a bit of flavor mixing)
  12. Add the rest of the mixture into the container along with the flavoring and repeat the same process.
  13. Once all is done, pop into the freezer to allow the balls to harden some and enjoy.

Notes

I keep mine in the freezer, and just take them out a few minutes before I want to eat them

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5 PLUS 1 CASHEW BALLS

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GRAIN FREE | DAIRY FREE SEED BREAD

How is everyone feeling this week? Any major shifts being felt as we went through the solar eclipse?

We took a mindful break and sat in a wonderful, quiet tea ceremony as the eclipse was in the process. There were define shifts being felt and the coldness that followed was a really cool experience. As if the world stood still for a few moments and everyone collectively inhaled again as the moon moved past the sun.
Definitely, a beautiful morning was had! Hope yours was beautiful and fun as well.

My son, Oliver and I sitting down for some tea and the obvious legos that followed, during the eclipse.

And now life is back to being the same again. Not much has changed here – still cooking, still testing new recipes. It’s been an obsession for the past few years actually. I just never shared them with anyone in the past. Well besides family! But now that I have an audience, although still small – I am just beside myself to be able to share my love of good, healthy food with others.

It’s really something special to know that others are reading your words, seeing your pictures, and thinking of making or even making the same food that you eat yourself. Also, my husband thinks he has struck the lottery because now I make goodies ALL the time vs every now and again. And we try new things more often now too because I am always trying to think of something different and better.

This week I am sharing my Grain Free & Dairy Free Seeded Bread recipe. Although no one in our family has Celiac, thankfully – we still choose to eat gluten free for the most part. It’s partly because of how we feel when we don’t eat gluten and mainly the part of how we feel when we do. And the feeling isn’t anything short of uncomfortable and just not our best. So we choose to be gluten free. And that by no means is to say that we buy all of the GF things at the stores and claim them to be healthy.

Because I’m not sure if you’ve caught on just yet, but companies really try their best to market to whatever audience is the main trend. Can someone say Oreos and Vegan together? Cause you know – they are vegan. But they aren’t HEALTHY. Same goes for the plethora of gluten-free goodies out on market shelves. Crackers, cookies, cakes, baking mixes, flours, and bread. You can find anything you want.

But sadly a lot of those same products have a TON of fillers, a TON of sugar, and a TON of other junk that you otherwise would not even know existed if you didn’t read the label.
So my number one rule for most things – try to find the least evil and stick to that item/brand.
And number two – try to make it yourself. It will be fresh, it will be homemade, and it will be cheaper. I can almost guarantee that last bit! Because if it’s actually healthy AND has clean ingredients – it will most likely leave a dent in your pocket. So I made one myself and it was gone in two days. Oops! To my defense, my toddler ate just that for two days.

You will love this grain-free seeded bread, because it’s dense and filling, unlike the fluffy white bread that leaves you wanting another slice, and another. Also, it’s full of fiber and not as carb heavy as your regular bread slice. Also filled with sprouted seeds – can you say yum and healthy at the same time?

Without further convincing here is the recipe, try it out and let me know what you think! It’s dense, heavy, and toasts up really well. I have not tried any substitutions to it just yet, so if you try them let me know so I can add in notes for anyone wanting to give it a shot.

GRAIN FREE | DAIRY FREE SEED BREAD

GRAIN FREE | DAIRY FREE SEED BREAD

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven 350 F.
  2. Add the almond flour, flax meal, chia seeds, hemp seeds, eggs, avocado oil and salt into a food processor.
  3. Process until everything is well combined and scrape the sides if needed.
  4. Add in the sprouted seeds and process again until you reach the desired consistency. (You aren't looking to smash all of the seeds, more like incorporate them in well)
  5. Line a bread pan with parchment paper and scoop the mixture into it.
  6. Top the bread with more seeds and press a bit into it.
  7. Bake for 45-50 minutes and check for doneness with a toothpick.
  8. Let cool a bit, slice, top with favorite toppings and enjoy!
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CHOCOLATE FIG BANANA BREAD

Chocolate, figs, bananas, and bread. Or rather this chocolate fig banana bread is where this whole post is headed towards. But let’s start from the beginning.

I talked extensively about seasonal eating in my previous post, which you can find here and I mentioned that figs are one of my favorite summer fruits. We live in a town that has so many farms close by. One of our favorites is The Natomas Farm. A simple farm, with a wonderful and funny farmer who we adore! This is the farm that I bought a flat of figs from last week to satisfy my love for figs until the next year.

And so my quest for all the fig recipes began. I have made a few savory relishes and some other desserts that I will share eventually as well. But this one has been one of the favorites from the ones I came up with. I’ve even managed to make it twice already. Sadly the second time I made it, I was highly sleep deprived and forgot to include quite a few essential ingredients. But it ended up turning out pretty good regardless. Have you ever been so tired that you missed a few ingredients in a recipe? I think this was a first for me. Also, cheers (with my coffee filled cup) to all of the sleep deprived mama’s out there, I feel you. It gets better, I promise. I didn’t believe it myself when others told, but I know now that it does. Besides the random 4:30 AM wake ups, most of the time, sleep is oh so good. So just keep your head high, the cup full, and the banana bread coming!

You will love this recipe because it is as simple as banana bread can get but also filled with the extremely rich and decadent flavor of the cacao. Also, it is completely grain free and refined sugar-free. Actually, it is even free of any other sweeteners like agave, or maple syrup. However, you always have the option to add that in – if you prefer yours sweeter. I actually really prefer the subtle sweetness from the banana and figs as they merge with the decadent chocolate flavor.

Let’s do a quick run down on figs. To put it simply – they are delicious. But that is such a small part of their goodness. They are extremely rich in fiber and when we need  25g to 30g per day – it sure is nice to know that just ONE fig can provide a whole 1.5g of fiber (of course depending on its size, but why not go for that bigger one?).

Along with fiber, they are a good source of:

  • Potassium
  • Manganese
  • Vitamin K
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B6
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Thiamine

Now if that’s not a fruit filled with some goodies, I’m not sure what is. Especially since nowadays, so many of us are depleted in many of those vitamins and minerals. Oh and best of all – it is full of antioxidants. No need to buy into the latest superfood craze – just get yourself some good old figs, and get your dose of antioxidants! But like I said previously – the best part is the taste. Have you ever had them frozen? They taste like custard – yum!

Alright, I won’t tease you much longer. Here is my recipe for the rich, full of healthy fats and protein, as well as fiber – Chocolate Fig Banana Bread.

CHOCOLATE FIG BANANA BREAD

CHOCOLATE FIG BANANA BREAD

Ingredients

  • 2 very ripe bananas
  • 2 pasture raised eggs
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 2 scoop collagen peptides
  • 6 tablespoons cacao powder (adjust to your own liking, I prefer mine rich in cacao)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 pint figs sliced

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. In a big bowl mash together the bananas.
  3. Add in the eggs and whisk together.
  4. Warm up the coconut oil and add into the mixture.
  5. Add in the coconut and almond flour and mix together.
  6. Add the cacao and mix once again - it may seem a bit dry, but don't be tempted to add anything moist.
  7. Add in the collagen peptides, baking soda, baking powder, vanilla extract, and cinnamon and mix one more time.
  8. Add in the figs (making sure to leave some for decoration) and mix one last time.
  9. Line a bread pan with parchment paper and scoop in the banana bread mixture.
  10. Top with the figs that you had left over in whatever decorative fashion you would like.
  11. Put into the oven and bake for 50 minutes.
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