Thursday, March 29, 2012

Paleo Pancakes! Oh No- with Maple Syrup!

When you use sweeteners, try to use some a bit healthier for you!

The truth is, sugar is not inherently bad for you. Your body runs off of sugar. The problem is gluttony and the addiction to sugar. Sweetness has such a elated effect on the brain and makes you think you need to eat more and more of it. Few people overindulge in steak, many overindulge in chocolate. The evolutionary assumption is that sugar used to only mean fruit, which goes bad or gets eaten quickly.

We have heard it before- and I'm sure it won't be the last time- "You eat things with maple syrup [or insert any natural sugar here]? Isn't that too sugary for your "diet"??" Well folks. Sugar is everywhere. You really have no choice when it comes to avoiding sugar- unless of course- you live under a rock and/or hunt for your own food. Sugar will be in your diet so you might as well make the best of it. The most common foods people get their undies in a bunch about are dates, honey, maple syrup and (coconut) palm sugar. I want to explain each item to you- so hear me out. 

Now, dates are high in fructose sugar, but are also have an incredibly high fiber per gram content (one date has 1.6 grams of fiber, which is pretty crazy). The fiber helps you process your sugars, so the effect approaches neutral. This is similar to our use of ripe bananas, apples and applesauce. (We used dates in the Chocolate Snack Cakes recipe back in February- Check it out!)

Maple Syrup
Maple syrup is boiled maple tree sap and is about the most delicious thing ever discovered. The best part is that it is solely sucrose (which means it is equally balanced between fructose and glucose ).

The seemingly most obvious Paleo sweetener, raw honey is simply filtered from bee hives. A great thing about honey is it actually has the potential to help with seasonal allergies (I didn’t know that until I started using it more). Of course “regular” or pasteurized honey can be used as well. It has nutrients and a reasonably close profile of fructose to glucose. We find it’s about the same sweetness as table sugar, so we can use much less and gain nutrients in the process. (We used honey in our Pecan Crusted Chicken back in January! Check it out!)

(Coconut) Palm Sugar
This is a lower glycemic, vitamin and mineral rich, unprocessed granulated sweetener. 

Okay. I feel a little better! Now that there (hopefully) is a better understanding- Let's get to the recipe!

You are in for a treat! I have made these as late as 11:00 at night to nip a sweet craving in the butt. Instead of grabbing a pint of ice cream or sugary snack, I grabbed my ingredients and got to work! As with most Paleo recipes- they are quick, easy and delicious!

It took me a couple tries to get them to how we like them because of the thickness of the batter and how fast they turn brown- but it was worth it! I topped them with a sliced banana, sliced strawberries and blueberries. You can top and mix in what you would like! Try some walnuts in the batter or on top! Try them with cinnamon and grass fed butter instead of syrup. Any combination is doable. As long as you keep it natural and fresh!

PREP: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 - 10 minutes, depending on how many you are making
Total: 10 - 20 minutes  

1 3/4 cup blanched almond flour
2 eggs, whisked
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
2/3 cup water
1 TBS grass fed butter or coconut oil [for frying]

Pure Maple Syrup- these pancakes will soak up your syrup. - try not to use too much! 

In a small mixing bowl, whisk both eggs

Pour almond flour, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg into a medium sized mixing bowl

Add vanilla and whisked eggs to the medium bowl and mix well

Add water, and continue to stir

Heat 1 tablespoon of grass fed butter or coconut oil in a large non stick skillet.

Scoop batter into a large skillet, leaving enough space in between pancakes to flip- try using a little bit of 
batter at first to get used to the consistency and how they cook

Cook 2 minutes on the first side, *flip, and cook for a remaining 1-2 minutes. Add more butter or oil as 

*I found I needed to flip the pancakes more often to make sure both sides were cooked through – the batter is a bit thicker than regular pancake batter and cooks way faster

This is the syrup we have and love!


--All the Best

Monday, March 26, 2012

Paleo Cupcakes!!

Amazingly Scumptious!

I really like to bake. Probably because I really like to eat whatever it is I bake :) Lately the Coconut Cocoa Cookies were our personal favorites- until now. Zach decided after trying my new found cupcakes that he may just like them better. Who wouldn't? These cupcakes are moist and tasty! My favorite combination - vanilla cake and chocolate frosting. YUM.

These cupcakes are delicious! Try them out!

PREP: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 - 25 minutes
Total: 30 - 35 minutes
Makes 12 cupcakes


1/2 cup coconut flour, sifted 
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
6 eggs
1/2 cup grapeseed oil - OR - virgin coconut oil
1/2 cup agave nectar (I used amber since it was in my pantry) - OR - raw honey
1 TBS vanilla

Chocolate Frosting:
1 cup dark chocolate - I used a 4 oz 70% Ghiradelli chocolate bar. Try to use 60% or higher
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
2 TBS agave nectar
1 TBS vanilla
pinch of sea salt


Pre heat oven to 350 degrees

In a medium bowl, combine coconut flour (yes, only a 1/2 cup is needed!), salt and baking soda

In a small bowl, blend together eggs, grapeseed oil, agave and vanilla

Mix wet ingredients into the medium sized bowl with the dry ingredients. Blend until smooth

Side note- These cupcakes dont rise very high so its best to fill them a bit more than 2/3 full when using the liners

Bake cupcakes for 20 -25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean

While the cupcakes are baking- start on your frosting!

Break up your chocolate and put in a small saucepan

Pour in 1/2 cup grapeseed oil and mix with the chocolate in the saucepan

Heat over low heat until all is melted and blended

Stir in agave, vanilla and salt

Once the chocolate is metled, put in a mixing bowl to cool. I thought waiting for it to cool took too long- so after about 10 minutes - I put it in the fridge to speed up the process

After the chocolate is firm (not hard) get out your blender and mix on high until the frosting is rich, fluffy and creamy (it may lighten up in color- thats ok)

By the time you are done with your frosting- your cupcakes should be cooled enough to lather the frosting on (don't put the frosting on if the cupcakes are even slightly warm or it will melt)

Keep refridgerated


-- All the best

Sunday, March 18, 2012

No Bake Cookies!

Its Cocoa-Coconut Cookies! Cocoanut Cookies!

I was hesitant as I started to make these- they didn't give me much hope as far as consistency goes but as soon as I got a taste- I couldn't help but have a second one! This is now my favorite Paleo treat. We love the coconut texture with the sweetness of the honey, almond butter and cocoa. Definitely the sweetest treat we've had since going Paleo!

Seriously, a MUST try! Quick and easy!

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Refrigerate: 25 - 30 minutes or Freeze: 15 - 20 minutes
Total: 30 - 45 minutes


1/3 cup honey

1 1/2 TBS cocoa

1/3 cup coconut oil or grass fed butter (ghee)

1/3 cup almond butter

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups dried, unsweetened shredded coconut 


Put honey, cocoa and coconut oil (or butter/ghee) in a medium sized saucepan over medium-high heat

Bring mixture to a boil. Boil for 1 minute and immediately remove from heat

Stir in the almond butter and vanilla until smooth and fully mixed

Drop in your coconut- you can dump it all or a little at  a time

Scoop spoonfuls of your cocoa coconut deliciousness on a sheet of wax paper or parchment paper

Put into the fridge until hardened and set. I put ours in the freezer for a faster hardening time- about 15-20 minutes

Keep them refrigerated and try not to keep them setting out. They will begin to melt/get soft!

Ready to put in the fridge!


-- All the best

Friday, March 9, 2012

Zucchini Lasagna

Delicious- ✔         Filling- ✔        Healthy-

Yum! That’s about all I can say about this one! 

You are probably thinking- this CAN'T be as good as pasta lasagna. You are incorrect, my friend! This is as good as it gets. As much as I loved pasta- this may be better! There is still a crunch from the soften zucchini and the Italian sausage we used has a bit of a kick to it- the black olives cool it down while the tomatoes give you that "ahhhh.." feeling. Very tasty. I give it a 10 on our 1-10 scale. 

Just try it! You’ll see!

PREP: 15-20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total: 55 – 60 minutes


2 lbs grass fed ground beef

1lb mild Italian sausage (we used Italian sausage from Country Market)

5 - 6 zucchinis (I used a mandolin slicer and cut rounds- you can slice long ways if you want)

1 red onion diced

4 cloves crushed garlic

2 tbsp dried oregano

2 tbsp dried basil

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp sea salt

2 tbsp olive oil

1 can (28 oz) of diced tomatoes drained (I mistakenly bought canned plum tomatoes- I cut them up and they worked great!)

1 small can (6 oz) of tomato paste

1 can black olives sliced (the can size depends on how much you like black olives J)


 ovento 350

In a large pan, sauté the onions and garlic in the extra‐virgin olive oil for about 3 minutes

Add the ground beef and sausage, and brown

Season the meat mixture with all of the dry ingredients, add the drained diced tomatoes and tomato paste, and mix well

Here’s where the fun begins! If you have kids- let them help!

In a 9 x 11 glass baking dish, place a layer ( #1) of sliced zucchini, making sure to overlap
# 1

Next, ladle on a thick layer of the meat mixture (# 2), and top with the sliced black olives (# 3)
# 2
# 3

Top meat and olive layer with another layer of sliced zucchini (# 4) and top with a final layer of the remaining meat mixture (# 5) 

# 4
# 5 - Final Layer!

Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes

Let the lasagna sit for 10 minutes before slicing and serving


     -- All the Best

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Breakfast Bowl

Our Amazing Secret

We love breakfast- any time of the day. That is why this is the perfect recipe for us. Well, it's also SUPER EASY and cheap - along with being delicious. Now, I debated about blogging this recipe because its our amazing secret. However, I think its time to spread the good word! It's an anytime, go-to meal. Add sriracha for that extra kick!

A side note, my brother who doesn't really like sweet potatoes loved this! The sweet potatoes get a bit caramelized in the skillet to give them a crispier texture. YUM!

Prep: 5 -10 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Total: 15-20 minutes

2-3 Sweet potatoes
12-18 Eggs
1 lb Breakfast sausage 
      OR 1 lb Ham 
      OR 1 lb Bacon


In a large skillet, start browning your meat over medium heat

While your meat is browning, poke holes in your sweet potatoes with a fork and bake in the microwave for around 10 minutes - or until soft

Stir or flip your meat while the sweet potatoes are baking

After several minutes your meat should be close to done - if not already done - crack all of your eggs in with the meat and scramble

As your eggs are cooking -  take the sweet potatoes out of the microwave (be careful!! they will be hot!) and cut in half, length-wise

Scoop the sweet potato out of the skin and put in the skillet with the meat and eggs

Cook your meat, eggs and sweet potato together for at least 5 minutes

The picture doesn't do it any justice - I can promise you though - it is absolutely delicious! We added mushrooms to the bowl (pictured above)- you can add peppers or onions- really any veggie you want. 

Put any leftovers in an airtight container and in the refrigerator to reheat for later! 


 -- All the best