Banana Almond Butter Muffins

Banana Almond Butter Muffins

 

And the snow day baking continues!

This time we made muffins that are the perfect thing for breakfast or a mid-day snack. They really taste like banana bread, and are full of nutritious ingredients – and very rich in protein. This is refueling food (I made Phil have one when he finished his workout this morning – he’s always struggling to find non-Clif-Bar snacks to have after exercising).

And they are 100% toddler approved! Finn is a pretty good eater, but picky about textures. These ones don’t seem to be too mushy for my particular kid. And since he’s a banana fan, they pass the taste test.

Enjoy, and let’s all hope this snow stops SOON.

Banana Almond Butter Muffins
 
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Gluten-free and wholesome muffins, perfect for breakfast or a snack.
Author:
Recipe type: Snack
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 1 cup almond butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla powder
  • 6 tbsp coconut flour
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp sea salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F and line a muffin pan with paper cases.
  2. Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth.
  3. Spoon the batter into the muffin cases and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

 


Sweet Citrus

clementine almond cookies gf

There are parts of our garden with 4+ feet of snow piled up. We have a narrow-walled path to walk down in front of the house. Everywhere you look just screams WINTER. This is a nuts week we’re having in Boston. Blizzard after blizzard with a little Patriots Superbowl win thrown in the middle (don’t worry Eagles, I’ll always be yours).

Finn and I have been feeling some serious cabin fever lately. Most of January was spent with one or both of us battling some sort of illness. And now that we’re finally healthy (thank you Renewal Detox!), we want to get OUTSIDE and play. There’s only so many times we can play with his toys and read his books at home.

One upside to being snowed in (and keeping our power on, thank goodness) is extra time for baking and cooking. We’ve made carrot cake, blueberry oat bars, meatballs, soup soup soup, and now these guys.

It’s winter and you’ve probably taken full advantage of the amazing citrus of the season. If you’re like us, you probably have a ton of clementines in your fruit bowl. It’s not hard to finish them all (especially with fruit-loving Finn around). But inevitably, one or two will go the way of the trash can because they went moldy or overripe. So before that happened this time, I grabbed 3 and made these delicious cookies.

If you don’t have clementines, don’t worry. Any citrus fruit will work – seriously, ANY. One giant orange. A lemon. A lime. Blood orange. Grapefruit even? Give it a try.

Clementine Almond Cookies
 
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A sweet and crumbly cookie, without gluten or refined sugars.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 12 cookies
Ingredients
  • Zest of 2 clementines (or any other citrus fruit)
  • Juice of 3 clementines (or any other citrus fruit)
  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • ½ cup almond meal
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • ⅛ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup coconut sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla powder
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, stirring well to incorporate.
  3. Scoop out the dough in golf ball size pieces and flatten with the palm of your hand. Don't worry about leaving tons of space between cookies on the baking sheet. They expand but not too much.
  4. Bake for 16-18 minutes. Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes.

 


Squash Brownies

IMG_0984

Time has a funny way of speeding up while simultaneously slowing down when you’re at home with a kiddo. I can’t believe the last time I wrote a blog post was 6 months ago. That feels like a million years ago in some ways, five minutes in others! The leaves are falling, the weather is cooling, and my baby is talking up a storm (new favorite word: cucumber!).

Change is inevitable, whether time goes slowly or not. And so here we are, in another season, another year, but we’re still the same people. My passion for healthy food never goes away, and neither does my husband’s excitement for his work. Finn is still my little lovebug, despite the odd mess or meltdown!

And I’ll tell you what else doesn’t change: my love of brownies.

These brownies are delicious, loaded with healthy ingredients, and just in time for Fall. They’re also gluten-free, if you’re so inclined (but the flour is easily substituted out for whichever you prefer). Make them while the winter squash is sweet and tasty, before the ground freezes!

And I’ll do my best to be back sooner rather than later.

Squash brownies

 

Squash Brownies
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 16 brownies
Ingredients
  • 1½ lbs winter squash (butternut, delicata, acorn, etc.), peeled, diced, and steamed
  • 5 oz plain dark chocolate, broken into small chunks (or use dark chocolate chips)
  • 11 tbsp diced organic butter
  • 4 organic eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups organic sugar
  • 1½ tsp vanilla powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1½ cups brown rice flour (or any flour you choose)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F and grease a 9"x13" baking pan.
  2. Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler.
  3. Mash the squash until smooth (or use a blender or food processor to puree).
  4. Combine the sugar, vanilla, salt, flour, and baking powder in a large bowl.
  5. Stir in the squash, melted chocolate and butter, and eggs.
  6. Pour into the baking pan and place in the oven. Bake for 25 minutes, or until cooked through (check with a toothpick through the center).

 

Guaranteed to make you giggle!

IMG_0987


Baby Falafel

Since before Finn was born, I’ve been interested in recipes that I can make for him as he grows and is better able to eat solid foods. Now that he’s 10 months old and rapidly approaching the picky toddler years, I’m enjoying his current very UN-particular eating habits! This kid eats anything. And then smears it all over himself and the table. And throws things on the floor. And mostly I don’t mind! I’m just happy to watch him discover and taste new foods, pretty much every day.

Baby Falafel

What follows is a recipe that came from a cookbook specifically designed for growing babies and their parents too (The Baby Led Weaning Cookbook). These chickpea patties, or as I call them, Baby Falafel, are great for both little ones and adults alike. They’re palm-sized, great for a healthy snack or lunch on the go, and have been Finn-approved (but to be completely honest here, most foods are Finn-approved).

photo 2

Better yet, they’re freezer-friendly, a bonus for tired parents. Instructions on how to prepare these for immediate consumption or for the freezer are both found below.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Baby Falafel
 
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Palm-sized chickpea patties great for babies and parents for snacks or lunch!
Author:
Recipe type: Snack/Lunch
Serves: 2 adults and 1 baby
Ingredients
  • 1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 small onion, peeled and chopped in quarters
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • handful fresh parsley
  • pinch of ground black pepper
  • 2-3 tbsp plain flour (spelt or other non-wheat flour are fine here)
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients except the flour in a food processor and blitz until thoroughly incorporated. Some chunks are okay - this doesn't need to be completely smooth.
  2. Coat your hands with flour (and sprinkle some flour on a plate) and start scooping out the mixture, one handful at a time, to make small patties, about the size of your child's palm (about half the size of yours probably?). Place the patties on the floury plate until you have about 12-14.
  3. Heat some sunflower or canola oil in a frying pan and cook the patties for a few minutes on each side, until slightly golden.
  4. Enjoy right away!
  5. Or, if FREEZING: allow the cooked patties to cool, then wrap in parchment or wax paper and place in a large ziplock bag in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat, microwave or pan-fry until warmed through.

 


First Birthday Cookies

Since having Finn in July, I’ve gotten to know many other new mamas in the past year. And all of a sudden, those babies are turning ONE! It’s hard to believe how quickly a first year goes by (and yet, how very slow it feels in the moment). I’m attending my first FIRST birthday party this weekend and decided to bring along these delectable cookies in celebration of my dear friend’s baby girl. The recipe comes from the LEON Baking & Desserts cookbook, one of my personal faves from England, along with the other Leon cookbooks available. All are terrific.

chocolate chip cookie

These cookies are gluten-free, egg-free, and contain no processed sugars. Plenty of butter though, which gives them the perfect gooey cookie middle.

chocolate chip cookies

Make these if you feel like celebrating along with me!

Chocolate Chip Cookies
 
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Based on a fabulous recipe from Leon Baking & Desserts
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 16
Ingredients
  • 2¼ cups gluten-free oat flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup organic unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • Sea salt for sprinkling (optional)
Instructions
  1. Heat the oven to 350F. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Mix together all the dry ingredients in a medium bowl (including the chocolate chips).
  3. Mix together all the wet ingredients in a small bowl.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir until they are well combined, but do not over-mix.
  5. Drop spoonfuls of the cookie dough on to the prepared baking tray. Lightly sprinkle with sea salt if desired.
  6. Bake in the oven for 12 minutes, and allow the cookies to cool on the tray for 1 minute before transferring to a cooling rack.