Creamy Vegan Coleslaw with Tangy Cashew Dressing

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We often don’t give coleslaw enough credit. It shows up around bbq season as a potluck companion, weaving in and out of our spring and summer evenings without much fuss: neither a fan favourite, nor a neglected dish.
When asked about coleslaw, most just shrug with a bit of a “meh” approach.
Poor coleslaw.

Let me attempt to change your thoughts on coleslaw, my friend.

There’s a few ways to “do” coleslaw.

#1: Dump out a plastic bag of pre chopped cabbage and squeeze on top some kind of goopy dressing containing weird ingredients coming from a weird package .
#2: Buy a head of cabbage, shred it, add mayo + celery salt + lemon and call it coleslaw.
#3: Put a little thought and time into your coleslaw making: finely shred cabbage by hand, add a few other tasty vegetables, some fresh herbs, and create a delicious & health supportive dressing that serves both your body AND your taste buds 😋

In general, the more you put in to your food, the more you will get out of it.
And a little effort can really go a long long way!

What I love about this recipe is that it’s versatile, but also a bit more interesting than your average bag + dressing coleslaw 😉. I’ve tossed in some shredded kale and fresh herbs for green, added flavour, but also to increase the nutrient quotient of the dish. The dressing is practically a nutrient powerhouse all on its own, with fermented coconut milk, cashews, fresh lemon, apple cider vinegar, and garlic!

What’s in it for you?

  • Cabbage: anti-inflammatory, anticancer, antioxidant, supports digestion, cardiovascular function & boosts immunity. High in calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, folate, and Vitamin C.

  • Kale: supports healthy skin & hair, improves digestion, reduces inflammation, lowers blood pressure, improves vision and is anticancer. High in calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, Vitamin C, A, & K, and folate.

  • Coconut Kefir: detoxifying, promotes healthy gut bacteria & improved digestion, reduces inflammation, supports liver & brain health, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, anti-candida, and supports a strong immune system.

  • Lemon: improves heart health, prevents kidney stones, reduces indigestion, detoxifying, promotes healthy teeth, hair, & skin. High in Vitamin C, calcium, & potassium.

Creamy Vegan Coleslaw with Tangy Cashew Dressing

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Ingredients:
Serves 8 - 12
1 large head of green cabbage, shredded thin
1/2 large head of purple cabbage, shredded thin
1 bunch of lacinato kale, stemmed & chopped thin
3-4 large carrots, peeled and grated
1/2 bunch of parsley, chopped
1/2 bunch of dill or cilantro, chopped
1 bunch of green onions, diced
1/2 cup sunflower seeds, toasted
Dressing:
1/2 cup cashews, soaked overnight (see note)
1 cup coconut kefir or yogourt (preferably homemade - will post a recipe for this soon!)
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp Dijon
1 tsp salt
1 tsp onion powder
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
Fresh pepper
2 tsp maple syrup for a sweeter dressing (optional)

  • Prep the salad by preparing all ingredients, except sunflower seeds, and tossing them in a very large bowl.

  • For the dressing, combine all ingredients in your high speed blender and combine until smooth.

  • Toss the salad with the dressing until evenly distributed and well coated. Allow to marinate for at least 2 hours before serving.

  • Before serving, add in your toasted sunflower seeds and garnish with more fresh herbs if desired. Enjoy!


Creamy Coconut Carrot Soup

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A simple weekday dinner or a fulfilling lunch, this soup is super simple to put together, nourishing for the belly and the soul, as well as totally delicious!
We tested this soup on a room full of 6 and unders, and got some super happy smiles and thumbs up from the littles and many happily surprised: “what did you put in that soup?” reactions from the parents. Always a huge compliment!

HINT: To make this soup taste extra amazing, make your own veggies stock: simply bring a pot of water and a bunch of loosely chopped vegetables to a boil, add salt, pepper, and any other desired herbs & spices, reduce heat and simmer for as many as 4 hours on low (I like to sauté the onions with some garlic & ginger with a bit of coconut oil first to add a bit of flavour). Strain out vegetables and here you have a delicious & simple vegetable broth. This kind of broth is great to make in the height of market season when there are loads of imperfect root vegetables like celeriac, parsnip, yams, potatoes, celery, carrots, & broccoli, just hanging about. YUM!

Creamy Coconut Carrot Soup

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1 large onion, diced small
3 Tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp salt
2 ½ Tbsp minced ginger
1 large or 2 small cloves garlic, minced
1” fresh turmeric, minced
2 cups carrots, peeled & chopped
4 cups vegetable stocks
1 can full-fat coconut milk
½ cup toasted pumpkin seeds, for serving (optional) or toasted large flaked coconut 😋

  • In a large soup pot, melt coconut oil and onions over medium heat. As onions become soft & translucent, add salt, ginger, garlic, turmeric, and carrots. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until carrots are slightly softened and mixture is fragrant.

  • Add vegetable stock, bring to a boil and then reduce to a medium-low simmer for 15 minutes. Add coconut milk and simmer another 5 – 10 minutes.

  • Serve with a sprinkle of toasted pumpkin seeds and/or a spoonful of coconut cream.

Like always, if you make this soup, please let me know how it went!
AND, if you don’t want to miss any upcoming recipes, be super to sign up for my email list below! I promise to only send out inspiration, upcoming class info & deliciousness!!

Green Curry Soup with Sesame Tofu

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Warming to the soul, gentle on the belly, and all around satisfying, this is a soup that is incredibly versatile in that you can throw in any veggies you have lying around, serve with soaked brown rice for the big eaters (did I say teenager?) or swap in chicken for tofu, if that’s your fancy.
I find this recipe quick & easy because these are all ingredients that I mostly have in the house, so long as I have about a 25 minute window to get dinner on the table, this soup can make that happen!

But first, a quick word on Tofu…

A while back, we were a bit scared off of soy in the health industry due to its phytoestrogen content. Phytoestrogens are plant compounds and dietary estrogens that can only be consumed through food sources. Due to increases in hormone dysfunction and estrogen dominance issues in both men and women, there have been concerns about the regular consumption of phytoestrogens and their affect on thyroid function, reproductive development, and breast cancer risk. Like so many foods, the consumption of estrogen containing foods is problematic for some and beneficial for others.
As with all fluctuations in nutritional information, is it always important to do what is right for you, as an individual, with differing preferences, needs, history, and health struggles. If consuming estrogen of any kind is problematic for you, likely it is safest to steer clear. For many others, consuming tofu as part of a balanced, plant-based diet, can be health promoting.

Why consuming Tofu could be beneficial:


Soy consumption may actually lower your risks for breast cancer:

“Estrogen has positive effects in some tissues and potentially negative effects in others. For example, high levels of estrogen can be good for the bones but can increase the likelihood of developing breast cancer. Ideally, you’d like what’s called a “selective estrogen receptor modulator” in your body that would have proestrogenic effects in some tissues and antiestrogenic effects in others.
Well, that’s what soy phytoestrogens appear to be. Soy seems to lower breast cancer risk, an antiestrogenic effect, but can also help reduce menopausal hot-flash symptoms, a proestrogenic effect. So, by eating soy, you may be able to enjoy the best of both worlds. “1

More good news:


”According to Marji McCullough, ScD, RD, strategic director of nutritional epidemiology for the American Cancer Society, epidemiologic studies that followed large populations of healthy women for many years either have shown no association between soy and breast cancer or a protective association from eating soy. Even breast cancer survivors may not need to worry. Three studies looking at women’s eating habits and other lifestyle factors after breast cancer found that, in the combined total of 9,000 breast cancer survivors studied, eating soy actually lowered the risk of breast cancer recurrence, even in women with estrogen receptor–positive tumors (although less so), and regardless of whether they were taking tamoxifen.”2

As with all foods that have been processed in any way, choosing the right kind makes all the difference!

  • Choose organic & non-GMO

  • Check the label for weird preservatives & added “flavours”

  • Buy plain (I prefer firm) and marinate yourself - keep reading for a super delicious & versatile marinade

  • Buy sprouted or fermented where possible - these will be more digestible & will make the nutrient value more accessible

My favourite, locally processed Tofu:

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No, we are not affiliates, I just like their product and always love to support local as much as possible!

Ok, so now that you’ve expanded your knowledge base on tofu 🤓, you’ve earned the recipe!

Green Curry Soup with Sesame Tofu

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For the Sesame Baked Tofu:

1 block of tofu drained (I like to slice it into 1/2 - 1” slabs and wrap it in a tea towel on a plate. Then I’ll put lots of weight on top to drain all the water out, usually a large stack of plates, and leave it to drain for an hour or so)
3 Tbsp wheat-free tamari
1.5 Tbsp sesame oil
Lots of fresh pepper

Cut drained tofu into small cubes and toss with all other ingredients in a medium bowl. Allow to marinade for roughly 1/2 an hour. Bake @ 350F for 35-40 minutes, stirring and flipping cubes occasionally, until browned and a bit crispy. Remove from oven and set aside.

For the Soup

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1 large onion, diced
3 Tbsp coconut oil
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups chopped cauliflower
1 1/2 cups chopped broccoli
1 cup diced or thinly sliced red pepper
4 cups vegetable stock
1 can full fat organic coconut milk
3 Tbsp green curry paste
1 Tbsp sesame oil
3 Tbsp wheat-free tamari
1 Tbsp maple syrup
Fresh pepper
1 recipe sesame baked tofu
2 large handfuls of chopped kale/swiss chard/spinach or a blend
Lime wedges for serving
Fresh cilantro for serving

  • In a large soup pot, sauté onion with coconut oil and salt over medium heat until softened. Add ginger, garlic, and cauliflower, broccoli, & red pepper, and sauté another few minutes until fragrant.

  • Add stock, coconut milk, curry paste, sesame oil, tamari, maple syrup and pepper, and stir well with a spatula to remove any clumps. Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for 20 - 30 minutes or until all vegetables are soft but not mushy.

  • Add tofu and greens and allow greens to wilt and tofu to heat through. Serve with a squeeze of lime and fresh cilantro. You may wish to add a few scoops of rice, quinoa, or rice noodles for a larger, more dense meal. Enjoy!

If you make this soup, please let me know how it goes!! Better yet, take a most beautiful pic and post it on Instagram or Facebook and tag me 😋! I want to know if you are using my recipes!

Don’t want to miss a recipe or an upcoming workshop? Sign up for the Newsletter below!


Resources:

1 - Greger, Michael, M.D., FACLM, “How Not To Die”, pg. 195
2 - Thalheimer, Judith C., RD, LDN, https://www.todaysdietitian.com/newarchives/040114p52.shtml

Double Layer Almond Chocolate Fudge Cake with Chocolate Avocado Frosting

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The time has finally come to post this birthday cake!! 🤪

Every February, my son’s birthday comes around, and I find myself so busy trying to plan a party, come up with a cool gift, make awesome party food, hammer out a delicious AND nutrient rich birthday cake, while meeting all the requirements of the birthday boy…that when and if the time comes to write out the cake recipe and post about it, I’m just too bagged!

Well, this year is different, my friends.

Although none of the above changed in any way, I have taken the time this year to get this recipe to you because it has FINALLY become my favourite, decadent, no-non-food-weirdness-ever, chocolate birthday (or anyday) cake!! And it has been officially taste tested by a pack of the harshest critics….11 year old kiddos!

Several years in the making, here’s a birthday cake that can accommodate all the dietary restrictions, make all the tastebuds sing, is moist and not overly dense, AND satisfies my NUTRITIONISTA REAL FOOD requirements (which is not always that easy!).

Double Layer Almond Chocolate Fudge Cake
with Chocolate Avocado Frosting

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Ingredients:
3 cups almond flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
3/4 cup cacao powder
1/2 cup coconut sugar
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
3 eggs, room temperature (for a vegan cake, replace eggs with 3 flax or chia eggs)
1 can full fat coconut milk
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup applesauce
1 Tbsp vanilla
2 Tbsp maple syrup
Chocolate Avocado Frosting:
1 cup dark chocolate chunks
1/4 cup coconut oil
3 ripe avocados
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp vanilla
1/4 cup cacao powder
1/4 cup maple syrup
Instructions:

  • Line 2 x 7” cake pans with parchment paper and lightly grease them with coconut oil. Preheat the oven to 350F.

  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cacao powder, sugar, baking soda & salt, until there are no lumps or clumps.

  • In a separate medium bowl, combine eggs, coconut milk, oil, applesauce, vanilla, and maple syrup, and whisk together until smooth. Pour wet ingredients into the dry mix and combine gently with a large spatula. Do not over-mix.

  • Pour evenly into your 2 cake pans and bake for 30 - 40 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely, preferably overnight, before frosting.

  • For the frosting: In a double boiler (or a glass bowl set over top of a medium pot with a few inches of water) melt chocolate chunks and coconut oil until runny. Transfer melted chocolate mix to the food processor and add in all other ingredients. Combine until smooth and thick. Adjust sweetness as desired (dark chocolate chunk sweetness will vary).

  • For cake assembly: Remove one cake from pan (don’t forget the parchment!) and place on a large serving plate. Evenly spread a thick layer of frosting over the top of the cake (I like to use a small spatula or a bread knife for this). Carefully remove the second cake from its pan and set on top of the bottom layer. Spread all remaining frosting over the top and along the sides of the cake to cover completely. Cake will keep on the countertop for roughly one day, refrigerate leftovers (if there are any 😉).

If you make this cake, please drop me a note with your feedback or kitchen dancing enthusiasm!! I want to know how it went and if I need to make any adjustments to the recipe!
Happy cake making celebration 🎉


Hippie Trail Cookies

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These cookies were specifically designed for an afternoon pick-me-up. They are the perfect nutrient packed punch that will give you a little hit of sweetness, flavour, and crunch, but are designed to keep your blood sugars stable, your energy levels strong & steady, your cells nourished, and your mind clear! What I call the magic 3, these lovelies contain all 3 macronutrients: carbohydrates, protein, & fat, a magic combination that slows the glucose distribution, giving you energy, but in an even and sustainable fashion.
Have one in the afternoon, after a run, a walk, a long morning of computer work, or a tough meeting, and take notice how far they get you into the early evening - I’m betting you will be surprised 😉

You can feel good about these cookies!


They are: plant-based, vegan, gluten & dairy-free, grain-free, sweetened with coconut sugar - which is a minimally refined sweetener that has minimal affect on blood sugar, they contain beneficial nutrients, vitamins & minerals, AND are satisfying for the palette & the soul!

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Hippie Trail Cookies

1 1/4 cups almond flour
1/3 cup vegan dark chocolate chips/chunks
2 Tbsp sunflower seeds
1 Tbsp sesame seeds
2 Tbsp hemp hearts
2 Tbsp chia seeds
1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/3 cup unrefined coconut sugar
3 Tbsp unrefined coconut oil, melted
1 tsp vanilla
2-4 Tbsp water

  • In a large mixing bowl, stir together almond flour, chocolate chips, seeds, coconut, baking powder, salt, and coconut sugar.

  • Add the melted coconut oil, vanilla, and 2 Tbsp of water, adding more water as needed. Mix should stick together.  

  • Loosely cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or overnight. 

  • Preheat oven to 350 F. With your hands, roll dough into roughly 2-3 Tbsp sized balls and place on your lined cookie sheet. Flatten the cookies slightly. They will not spread much, so they can be quite close together.

  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the undersides are golden brown and the tops appear slightly puffy and cracked.

Did you make these cookies? How did they turn out? I’d love your feedback, leave a comment below ☺️

Looking for more recipes like this? Check these ones out!

Yam & Quinoa Salad with Sesame Ginger Dressing

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I am a die hard salad lover, I’m not gonna hide it!
But even for us die hards, you really must continue to mix it up in the kitchen or the salad ho hum boredom, can’t stand that same bloody balsamic vinaigrette one more day, takes over. During the winter months, it’s a great move to mix in some seasonal root vegetables with your leafy greens to shake up the salad routine. By also adding a high protein & complex carbohydrate component in the quinoa, this salad is a well rounded meal that will last you quite a few days!

Why we love Yams 🧡

  • Yams are a great source of vitamin C, fibre, potassium, manganese, and B vitamins

  • Yams are a starchy vegetable, made up of carbohydrates and dietary fiber which helps stabilize blood sugar levels - beneficial for diabetes

  • They are known to reduce cardiovascular disease due to their high B6 content

  • High in antioxidants and beneficial to proper function of the immune system

  • Rich in minerals: vitamin A, C, B, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin and folic acid, as well as calcium, copper, potassium, manganese, iron and phosphorus

  • High vitamin A contained in the yam is converted into beta-carotene which helps to maintain healthy mucous membranes in the eyes, aiding night vision and age related vision loss, and also supports healthy bone development and provides protection from lung and mouth cancers

Why we love Quinoa 💛

  • Quinoa is gluten-free, high in protein and one of the few plant foods that contain all nine essential amino acids

  • It is high in fiber, magnesium, B vitamins, iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, vitamin E and various beneficial antioxidants

  • Contains plant compounds called flavanoids known for their anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-cancer, anti-depressant qualities

  • Is low on the Glycemic Index which makes it great for stabilizing blood sugar levels

Yam & Quinoa Salad with Sesame Ginger Dressing

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Ingredients:

1 medium sized Yam, cut into 1” cubes
1-2 Tbsp coconut oil
1/4 tsp salt
Fresh pepper
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1 1/2 cups water
2-3 cups packed spinach leaves, chopped small
1/4 cup minced red onion
1 red pepper, diced small
1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds
2 Tbsp hemp hearts
1/3 cup fresh cilantro (optional)
For the Sesame Ginger Dressing:
2 tsp fresh ginger, minced or grated
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp tamari
2 Tbsp sesame oil
1 Tbsp maple syrup
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
Fresh pepper
Instructions:

  • Toss cubed yams in melted coconut oil and season with salt & pepper. Roast @ 375F for 25 minutes or until cooked through but not mushy. Cool slightly.

  • Cook quinoa by combining dry quinoa with water. Season with a little salt and 1 tsp of coconut oil, if desired. Cool slightly.

  • For the dressing, combine all ingredients in a glass jar and shake or stir until well combined.

  • In a medium salad bowl, combine all salad ingredients with a fork. Coat with roughly 1/4 - 1/3 cup of the dressing, adjusting seasonings and volume of dressing as you go. Note: start with a smaller amount of dressing and add a little more at a time so as to not have it be too soaked.

  • Will keep up to 5 days in the fridge.

If you try this recipe, PLEASE let me know how it turned out & how much you loved it (and even if you didn’t 😉) AND if you’d like more recipes like this one, sign up for the Newsletter below!

My ongoing advice for this New Year of 2019: EAT MORE PLANTS!!

Double Chocolate Granola Brownies

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Chocolate brownie + granola bar.
It just happened.
And it is fabulous!

This is a dense bar that’s perfect for an active day on the slopes, snack attack in the kids’ lunchbox, and a long day’s work in need of an afternoon pick-me-up! Loaded with mineral rich cacao powder, blood sugar stabilizing dates & oats, full spectrum amino acid hemp hearts, extra protein in almond butter and chopped almonds, and intensified in taste by dried cranberries and shredded coconut, I’m not convinced that this bar is missing anything! Except maybe some warm bellies 😋


As always:
no gluten,
no dairy,
no refined sugar,
no confusing food labels.
Use real food & feel real good!
You will love these, I am so super sure.

DOUBLE CHOCOLATE GRANOLA BROWNIES

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Bake Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Category: Vegan, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Snacks, Healthy Treat, Kid Approved
Serving: 12 medium sized bars

Ingredients:

2/3 cup medjool dates, pitted
1/2 cup almond butter, smooth or crunchy
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup cacao powder
1 1/2 cups oats
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup hemp hearts
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips
For Topping:
1/4 cup melted chocolate
2 Tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut
Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a medium glass dish with parchment - mine is 11 x 7”.

2. In a food processor, combine dates, almond butter, maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla, until well combined. Add oats, cacao powder, and salt, and process until just combined. Transfer mixture to a medium bowl.

3. Add hemp hearts, cranberries, chocolate chips, and coconut, and stir together with a wooden spoon. Transfer mixture to your lined pan and press with wet hands to evenly distribute.

4. Bake for 25 - 30 minutes until edges brown slightly. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

5. Once mostly cooled, drizzle melted chocolate over top and sprinkle with shredded coconut. Transfer brownies to the fridge to solidify before cutting into squares. Keep refrigerated.

Did you make these? Tell me how they turned out!
Want to make incredible Holiday Chocolates? Grab this Ebook today!
L
ooking for more recipes like this? Check these out!

Lemon Kale Pesto

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Deep in the summer swing, with armloads of both kale and basil, this pesto came together simply (& deliciously) and has been made several times since (the kids even made it at my Kids Cooking Camp and it was an absolute success)! With the summer days sailing by as fast as they do, I haven’t had much time to post this recipe. Here it is now and, don’t worry, the basil and kale should still be in abundance for a while yet.

So far, we’ve served this up straight with tortilla chips, alongside some lovely barbeque’d salmon, on top of lentil veggie burgers with roasted yams, and in a crusty bread sandwich with roasted peppers. We’ve decided that it will pretty much get along with anyone (just my kind of spread)!

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Lemon Kale Pesto

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Category: Dips, Snacks, Main Meals

Cuisine: Vegan, Plant-Based, Nutrient-Dense

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Ingredients

  • 4 cups kale, stemmed, chopped & loosely packed

  • Juice 1 lemon

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 2 cups basil, loosely packed

  • 3 Large cloves garlic, minced

  • 3 Tbsp nutritional yeast

  • ½ cup toasted pine nuts

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil

  • Fresh black pepper

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, combine kale, lemon juice and salt. Massage with hands until wilted and softened. Set aside.

  2. In a medium frying pan, toast pine nuts over medium heat until just lightly browned.

  3. In a food processor, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth or desired consistency is reached (I like mine quite smooth - 5-7 minutes scraping sides in between).

  4. Serve with tortilla chips or crackers, along side some roasted yams or on top of baked portabellos, with veggie burgers or bbq salmon. Anyway you shake it: yum!


Try this pesto! Feed it to your kids! Tell me how it goes!

Roasted Yam & Cashew Buddha Bowls with Coconut Cashew Sauce

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Oh my, oh my, oh my. If you have not yet jumped aboard the Buddha Bowl Bandwagon, well there is no time like the present! This here is an easy weeknight meal with some kinda fantastical Thai-style coconut cashew sauce that’ll knock your socks (or in my case, slippers) right off!

This bowl is composed of roasted yams, steamed kale, quinoa, shredded carrot, and toasted cashews, but you can make this bowl of goodness your own by adding in whatever your heart desires (or your fridge seems to be done with!). Or, better yet, just make up a batch of this sauce and eat it on everything, every day, all day! Yessss!


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Roasted Yam & Cashew Buddha Bowls with Coconut Cashew Sauce

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Category: Main Meal, Dinner, Lunch

Cuisine: Vegan, Real food, Nutrient-dense, Vegetarian

Yield: 4-6

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Ingredients

  • Roasted Yams

  • Cooked Quinoa

  • Shredded Carrots

  • Steamed Swiss Chard or Kale

  • Toasted Cashews

  • Any other veggie add-ins you may like

  • Coconut Cashew Sauce:

  • 1 cup full-fat coconut milk

  • 1/2 cup cashew butter

  • 1 Tbsp red Thai curry paste

  • 2 Tbsp tamari

  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup

  • Juice of 1 lime

  • Pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. Prepare all your Buddha bowl ingredients and dish them out into your bowls.

  2. For the sauce: Add all ingredients to your blender and combine until smooth. Adjust seasonings as desired.

  3. Serve bowls warm and drizzled with cashew sauce.

Easy Lunchbox Cookies

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It’s fairly easy to find cookie recipes online these days, but it’s my experience that most cookie recipes contain unnecessary added sugars, flour, and oil, and can be tricky for people with food intolerances or allergies.  This recipe makes a really nice cookie, that’s super satisfying, easy to make, and uses only real food ingredients. The flour used here is oat, but you could sub another light gluten-free flour such as brown rice, or a blend. Another option would be to make your own oat flour by simply blending some oats in your food processor until a flour-like consistency is met and use that. Also, if you want to make a nut-free cookie here, simply swap out the nut butter for a seed butter like sunflower.

I’m calling these a “lunchbox” cookie because they keep well, are not high in sugar or refined ingredients, and will absolutely qualify the kiddos’ requirements for a treat-like snack to take to school.
Some Mom (or Dad) advice: double the batch and throw the 2nd batch in the freezer – simply pop a frozen cookie in your kids lunchbox in the morning and it’s defrosted a few hours later. High-fives all around!

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Easy Lunchbox Cookies

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Category: Healthy Snacks, Healthy Treats, Cookies

Cuisine: Plant-Based, Nutrient-Dense

Yield: 12

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup almond butter

  • 1/4 cup honey

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 3/4 cup oats

  • 1/2 cup oat flour

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted

  • 1/4 cup raisins

  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350F.

  2. In a medium bowl, combine almond butter, honey, and vanilla with a spoon. Add in all other ingredients and mix well until combined. Use wet hands to work the dough to a nice consistency.

  3. On lined baking sheets, roll about 1 1/2 Tbsps of dough in wet hands and press slightly. Leave at least a few inches between your cookies as they will expand while baking.

  4. Bake 12-16 minutes until slightly browned on the edges. Makes roughly 12 medium sized cookies.


Did you make these cookies? Tell me how they turned out!
Looking for more lunchbox inspiration? Try these Easy Chewy Granola Bars or these Coconut Mango Blueberry Muffins



Comforting Lentil Stew

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In times of endless change, the soul desires comfort: soothing, calming energy, warm baths and thick socks. We may crave grounding practices, getting our hands in the dirt, dancing bare foot; we may yearn for gentler sounds, mellow music and empty houses. Our cravings of comfort are natural and normal; our body and mind meshing with the ebb and flow of the seasons, the dynamics of changing weather and the rotation of the earth.

Our cravings for foods are no different. Warmer weather melds with garden veggies, leafy greens, cold juices, and fresh fruit; the colder air brings a desire for warmth in stews and soups, chilli and tea. Tune in to these cycles; tune in to your cravings. What does your body need? What does your soul need? What are your cravings trying to tell you?

Here is a stew to comfort you on a cold day; a day of change or uncertainty; a day of grief or despair; a day you desire to be nurtured. This stew is both hearty and gentle, simmered with healing foods and flavoured with subtle notes. Make this stew for a friend in need, a tuckered child, or for your own asking soul. Be soothed. Be satisfied.

I could eat this stew all day. Every day. I’m not kidding.

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Comforting Lentil Soup

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Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil

  • 1 large onion, diced

  • 1 1/2 tsp salt

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced

  • 2 stalks celery, diced

  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced

  • 2 tsp cumin

  • 1 1/2 tsp dried thyme

  • 1 tsp turmeric

  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper

  • 2 cups fresh tomatoes, diced

  • 3/4 cup french lentils, soaked (4-6 hours) and rinsed

  • 4 cups vegetable stock

  • 1 can full fat coconut milk

  • 3 cups Swiss chard, rinsed and chopped

  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

Instructions

  1. In a large soup pot, melt coconut oil over medium heat. Add onions and salt and saute until softened. Add garlic, ginger, celery, carrots, and spices and stir for a few minutes until fragrant. Add tomatoes, lentils, stock, and coconut milk, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 25-35 minutes until vegetables are tender.

  2. Add Swiss chard and lemon juice and simmer another 7-10 minutes until the chard is wilted and the flavours have blended. Adjust seasoning, as desired. Serve immediately, although, as with most stew, this will get better with a little age. Feel free to divide the stew amongst freezer safe containers and freeze some for an easy, nutrient-packed, weekday meal. Enjoy!


A note on lentils: Lentils are one of my favourite foods! They are earthy and grounding, high in soluble fibre, which makes them great for digestion and for maintaining stable blood sugars. They are a great source of plant-based protein and iron, and are supportive in proper energy production and metabolism function. Plus, they are tasty little guys and so satisfying for the belly!

Veggie Squash Chili

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I am SO in love with this Chili!!
The crisp Fall air has officially moved in to our little nestled village and I’m craving warmth in every way.
This Veggie Squash Chili is so loaded with comfort: it’s full flavour & mellow spice, the fulfilling density of squash and black beans, and the complete satiating sensation that comes with a warming bowl of goodness on a dark October night! Best thing? My kid devours it with “umm’s” and “ohh’s” and requests for its presence in his lunch box. As a parent (and a Nutritionist), my feeling on this is = SLAM DUNK!

If in your previous life you’ve associated Chili with beef and grated cheddar cheese, I dare you to step away from your old ways and open yourself up to the Veggie Chili movement. Nothing is missing from this one, I kid you not! However, don’t forget to delight your taste buds with those tasty garnishes: fresh cilantro, avocado, cashew sour cream (if you like to go the distance  ), and definitely those toasted pumpkin seeds for a little crispy crunch!
Make this my way or change it up to suit your heart’s desires! But do let me know how you like it, if your family devoured it, and if you brightened someone’s day with it!

Nutritional Notes: Kabocha squash is loaded with Vitamin A (beta-carotene) known for its immune support, eye, skin & hair health, Vitamin C, plant-based iron, B vitamins & fibre. We love beans for their incredible protein power, fibre density, and benefits to cardiovascular health. Onions and garlic are amazing antioxidants, cancer fighters, and protectors against heart disease. And we are still crazy about Kale, no matter what they say, for its antioxidant properties, nutrient-density, Vitamin C, mineral dosage and heart protective capabilities!

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Veggie Squash Chili

Yield: 10-12

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Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil

  • 1 medium red onion, chopped

  • 1 small kabocha squash, cubed

  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped

  • 2 medium carrots, chopped

  • 2 ribs celery, chopped

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 6 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 Tbsp chili powder

  • 2 tsp ground cumin

  • 1 tsp coriander

  • 1 ½ tsp smoked paprika

  • 1 tsp dried oregano

  • 1 large can (28 oz) diced tomatoes with juices

  • 1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1 can (15 oz) pinto beans, drained and rinsed

  • 2 cups vegetable broth

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1 bunch kale, washed, stemmed and chopped

  • Juice of 1-2 limes

  • Fresh pepper

  • For Serving: Avocado, Cilantro, and Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

Instructions

  1. In a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, warm the coconut oil and onion and sauté until softened. Add the squash, onion, peppers, carrot, celery and salt. Stir to combine and then cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 7 to 10 minutes.

  2. Add spices and cook until fragrant, stirring constantly, 3-5 minutes.

  3. Add the tomatoes, beans, vegetable broth and bay leaf. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Maintain a gentle simmer for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in kale, cook another 10 minutes and then remove from heat

  4. Before serving, add lime juice and fresh pepper, and adjust to taste. Serve with fresh avocado, cilantro or basil and toasted pumpkin seeds.

  5. Note: Best on day 2 (or 3 or 4 or 5).


Love this Recipe? You might like this one too!

Happy Mama Hormone Balancing Chocolate Mousse

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If you are a woman, or know a woman, you need this recipe.

That’s it.

The ladies crave chocolate, okay?! Particularly at certain times during their cycle. There is a reason for this and it goes beyond a typical chocolate craving: women crave chocolate during the week leading up to menses because as the body prepares to lose extra volumes of blood, it demands more nutrients, particularly minerals. Real, unprocessed, high-cacao content chocolate (no, not mars bars & snickers, my Loves) is very high in minerals and the perfect mineral booster pre-menses (in small doses of course!). Eating a particularly nutrient-dense diet during this time encourages regular hormonal function, decreasing excess inflammation and reducing stress on the adrenals and the endocrine system.

Other Hormone Balancing Ingredients in this Recipe:

  • Avocado: Full of fiber, potassium, magnesium, vitamin E, B-vitamins, and Folic acid, avocados are a powerhouse food for hormone balance. They are a great choice for balancing insulin metabolism in your body and are also anti-inflammatory.

  • Coconut Oil: Provides necessary building blocks for proper hormone function, stimulates the immune system & metabolic function, and helps to balance mood disruptive blood sugars 

  • Tahini: I love love love tahini and use it liberally in many of my recipes. This beauty seed butter is loaded with phosphorous, magnesium, potassium, iron, and is one of the best plant-based sources of absorbable calcium. It is also helpful in liver detoxification, is high in protein, is alkaline, and promotes healthy skin and cell growth.

  • Maca: Maca is an endocrine adaptogen, gaining a gleaming reputation for its positive influence on hormone regulation. Maca stimulates and nourishes the hypothalamus and pituitary glands, which can have positive influences on the thyroid, pancreas, adrenal, ovarian and testicular glands.

My Dear Ladies:
Eat Chocolate. Not Too Much. Choose Good Quality. Eat with Joy.


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Happy Mama Hormone Balancing Chocolate Mousse

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Ingredients

  • 1 avocado

  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil

  • 2 Tbsp cacao powder

  • 2 tsp maca powder

  • 1/8 tsp sea salt

  • 1 Tbsp honey

  • 1 Tbsp tahini

  • 1/4 tsp vanilla

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients in your food processor or blender and blend until smooth.

  2. Serve immediately.

  3. Number of servings: 1 

Want to learn more about balancing hormones?



Almond Kale Crackers

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If the idea of making your own crackers sounds intimidating, you’re not alone. However, it needn’t be! Particularly if you are currently harvesting a lot of kale from your garden, or if you grabbed a bunch at the Farmer’s Market that you don’t have a clue what to do with, these crackers are easy, they work seasonally, and are completely NON-intimidating!! I promise.

Warning: they will look brilliantly green before you pop them in the oven…

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The flavours are strong in this cracker, which I love, but you can easily dial down the flavour by omitting the garlic and onion powder or cutting the quantities in half. I served these up with some herbed cashew cream cheese and sliced cucumber, which was unreal! But they would do really well with some traditional hummus, olives, and a few chunks of candied salmon. However you like to serve them, enjoy and let me know how you like them!

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Almond Kale Crackers


Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
Category: Snacks, Appetizers
Cuisine: Plant-Based, Nutrient-Dense

Yield: 20 - 28 Crackers

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup kale, packed

  • 1/3 cup almond meal/ground Brazil nuts

  • ½ cup sunflower seeds

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1/2 large white or yellow onion, grated

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil, solid

  • 1 tsp onion powder

  • ½ tsp garlic powder

  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 300 °F and line a baking tray with parchment paper.

  2. Put the kale leaves into a food processor and process until finely chopped. Add the remaining ingredients and process again to a smooth paste.

  3. Using a spatula, spread the mixture onto the lined tray as thinly as possible.

  4. Bake for 25 minutes, take the crackers out and score into desired sized crackers with a large knife. Bake another 25-30 minutes. Allow to cool completely. Break apart into pieces by hand. Store on counter exposed to open air (they will soften in a sealed container).

Roasted Tomato & Black Bean Soup

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When I say easy, what I mean is: your hubby, (who may call frozen cardboard pizza, dinner) could-make-it-easy!
You like that, right?! I know, Bebe.

So, here you are: a minimal ingredient, week night soup, that’s been a surprise hit in our home for a few weeks now. Most of the ingredients are the kinds of things that I have on hand, which makes this soup particularly fantastic when it comes to the last minute, no-idea-what’s-for-dinner, gotta-pull-something-outta-your-hat-and-quick, kinda night. Just be sure to use roasted diced tomatoes (and yes, absolutely you can roast them yourself, you go getter, you!) and not plain diced tomatoes because the flavour will certainly be lacking.

We topped this soup off with some cubed avocado and fresh cilantro, but you are most free to be creative and turn that garnish scene into whatever your lovely heart desires. Just be sure to let me know how amazing it turned out!

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Roasted Tomato & Black Bean Soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Category: Soup, Lunch, Dinner

Cuisine: Vegan, Real food, Nutrient-dense, Vegetarian

Yield: 6-8 servings

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Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil

  • 1 large onion, diced

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 tsp cumin

  • 1/2 tsp coriander

  • 1 tsp salt

  • Fresh pepper

  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed (15oz)

  • 1 can roasted diced tomatoes, with juices (28oz)

  • 3 cups vegetable stock

  • 1 bunch of kale, washed, stemmed and chopped

  • 1 Avocado (optional, for serving)

  • Chopped fresh cilantro (optional, for serving)

Instructions

  1. In a medium-large soup pot, over medium heat, melt coconut oil and add onions, stirring until softened. Add garlic, stirring until just softened. Add spices and stir just until fragrant.

  2. Add beans, tomatoes, and vegetable stock and reduce heat to a strong simmer. Cover with lid and allow to simmer 15-20 minutes until beans are tender.

  3. Stir in kale, reduce heat, and allow to wilt another 10 minutes. Adjust seasonings as needed.


As with most soups, this one gets better and better day after day!

Roasted Cauliflower & Arugula Salad

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If you are the kind of person who gets intimidated by all the gorgeous food photos online and wonders how those people can find the time and energy to make such gorgeous food all the time. This one’s for you.
This recipe is SUPER simple, uses easy to find ingredients, and has a very versatile dressing that you can easily use again and again for many other (potentially less-than-instagram-impressive) salads of all kinds!

If you felt like boosting the volume and density of this salad, by turning it into more of a meal, then I would suggest adding in some cooked quinoa or even a kamut rotini pasta kinda thing.
But simply as is, is quite lovely.

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Roasted Cauliflower & Arugula Salad

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Category: Salad, Side Dish, Main Course

Cuisine: Vegan, Real food, Nutrient-dense, Vegetarian

Yield: 2-4

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Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into small florets

  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil

  • Salt & fresh pepper

  • 1 red pepper, diced small

  • 2 cups lightly packed arugula, roughly chopped

  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (or slivered almonds)

  • 2 Tbsp pitted kalamata olives, roughly chopped

  • For the dressing:

  • 1 tsp dijon

  • 1 tsp maple syrup

  • 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar

  • 4 Tbsp olive oil

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 1 small clove of garlic, minced

  • Lots of fresh ground pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375F.

  2. Toss cauliflower florets with coconut oil, salt & pepper and spread on a lined baking sheet. Roast for 30-35 minutes until lightly browned and fork-tender. Set aside to cool.

  3. In a medium bowl, place cooled cauliflower and all other salad ingredients.

  4. In a medium glass jar, place all dressing ingredients and shake well.

  5. Toss salad ingredients with enough dressing to coat, adjusting seasonings as desired. Serve immediately.




Coconut Mango Blueberry Muffins

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Mango + Blueberry + Coconut = I’m IN!!
This delicious powerhouse combo works beautifully in these muffins. What’s extra awesome, is that they are minimal ingredient and made simply with all, easy-to-find, whole food ingredients. My son’s first reaction should have been one of those funny-crazy kid youtube videos, because he was so excited about how good they were, that he had us all busting a gut in the kitchen over it. I haven’t met a kid yet who wasn’t pretty stoked on mangoes and blueberries, so these ones should be an easy sell 

If you feel like going the extra mile with this recipe, make your own almond flour by simply grinding up your favourite almonds in a dry food processor until a fine meal is formed.

Nutritional Tip: Store your almonds (and all nuts & flours) in your fridge, they will last longer and stay fresh. Once a nut gets too old, the oils start to turn. These rancid oils are at the root of many health struggles, including inflammation, cancer, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer’s, and many other damaging health conditions. Take good care of your nuts, my friends 

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Coconut Mango Blueberry Muffins

Yield: 12

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Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups almond meal

  • 1/4 cup coconut flour

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp good quality salt

  • 2 eggs

  • 1/3 cup maple syrup

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

  • 2 tsp vanilla

  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (1-2 lemons)

  • 2 Tbsp lemon zest (2 lemons)

  • 2 Tbsp chia seeds

  • 1/2 cup shredded, unsweetened coconut

  • 1/2 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen

  • 1/2 cup fresh mango, diced small

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together almond meal, coconut flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla, lemon juice and zest. Stir in chia seeds and allow to set a few minutes.

  4. Pour wet ingredients into your large bowl with the flour mixture and stir until just combined (do not over-mix). Fold in shredded coconut and fruit.

  5. Distribute evenly among your lined muffin pan. Bake 25 minutes or until slightly browned and an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool for at least 30 minutes before serving (they will need time to set and will otherwise be crumbly). Enjoy!

Coconut Curry Butternut Soup

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It’s a great time of year to use squash. They are abundant and satisfying, but are also nutrient-rich powerhouses. Butternut is one of my favourites! It is versatile, creamy, full-flavoured, and easy to work with. High in Vitamin C, iron, potassium, magnesium, and bursting with beta-carotene, this starch is low on the Glycemic Index and wonderful for hungry littles, growing teens, and adults needing something satiating.

This recipe is simple, quick, and just real yummy!

This soup is so flavourful, you needn’t add anything extra!

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Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil

  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic

  • 1 Tbsp minced ginger

  • 2 cups veggie broth

  • 1 apple, peeled and cubed

  • ½ tsp cumin

  • 1 tsp curry powder

  • ½ tsp cinnamon

  • pinch salt

  • 1 can coconut milk

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Toss squash with 1 Tbsp coconut oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 15minutes or until just tender.

  2. Heat remaining oil on medium-low, in a large soup pot. Add onion. Saute until soft and translucent. Add garlic and ginger and stir until fragrant.

  3. Add veggie broth, apple, cooked squash and remaining spices, and simmer 10minutes or until squash is soft. Add coconut milk and stir.

  4. Remove from heat and puree in blender. Return to stove and heat through. Enjoy!

Bonk Bars

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I have to admit that I have a big time soft spot for my Bonk Bars.
They were one of my first original recipes that people were really excited about. On top of that, the honest-to-gosh-golly-goodness truth is that I just LOVE them SO much. They are my absolute favourite bar to have hanging around when I’m training for a distance run, rehearsing like mad for a dance show, or just being the busy body, high-functioning human that I am. They are THE perfect afternoon slump, pick-me-up bar with all those great combinations that we love so much: macronutrient balance, nutrient-density, and total flavour jam!

These bars were inspired by a good friend who is hypoglycemic and tends to “bonk” (have a blood sugar crash inducing fits of rage and/or extreme grumpiness) if he doesn’t eat good food regularly.  Loaded with blood-sugar stabilizing fiber (dates), fats (coconut oil & chia), proteins (nuts & seeds), complex carbs (oats), and natural sweetness, these are fool-proof bars for active people, athletes, teenagers, regular “bonkers”, and sweet-treat lovers everywhere. Easy to throw together and incredibly satisfying, these will keep well for weeks in the fridge (I dare you to try) and freeze well too!
Stay grump-free.
Look out for your friends.
Prevent “Bonking”.

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Bonk Bars

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Category: Snack, Healthy Treat, Power Snack

Cuisine: Vegan, Real food, Nutrient-dense, Vegetarian, Raw

Yield: 16 bars

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup medjool dates

  • 1 cup almond butter

  • 1 cup oats

  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted

  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds

  • ¼ cup sesame seeds

  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds

  • ¼ cup shredded coconut

  • 3 Tbsp chia seeds

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 1/4 cup raisins

  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

  • ¼ cup goji berries (mulberries/golden berries)

Instructions

  1. Soak dates in boiled water until soft (about 7-10 minutes).

  2. In food processor, combine dates and almond butter until smooth. Add oats and coconut oil and pulse until roughly combined. Transfer mixture to a large bowl.

  3. Add all remaining ingredients and combine.

  4. Pour into a lined 8 x 8 square pan and press down with wet hands until evenly distributed and smooth.

  5. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before cutting into squares. Store in fridge.


If you try these Bars and love them (or not), let me know how they worked out for you!!

Love these? Want more recipes like this? Check these out:
Sesame Chocolate Power Balls

The Ultimate Cookie

Simple Berry Chia Pudding

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I like to make chia pudding at the beginning of the week for quick and easy breakfast and/or lunch for the week.  It takes about 5 minutes to make and is a nutrient powerhouse, especially if you’ve had time to whip up your own almond milk (bonus points!)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup almond milk

  • 2 Tbsp chia seeds

  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 1 generous handful of berries (strawberries, blueberries, huckleberries, blackberries)

Instructions

This pudding is SO easy!  Just combine all ingredients except berries in a large mason jar and shake, shake, shake it up, Baby!  Place the jar in the fridge.  An hour or so later, shake it well again making sure the seeds are floating up from the bottom of the jar (I will often use a wooden spoon to get those stubborn ones off the bottom).  Leave pudding overnight in the fridge.  In the morning, place all ingredients in a blender, adding in your berries, and blend until well combine.  Pour back into jar and EAT!  Serve with homemade granola or muesli, sprinkled with your favourite nuts & seeds (cacao nibs too), or just straight up.  Will keep 4-5 days in the fridge.