Chunky Monkey Banana Muffins (refined sugar and dairy free)

Chunky Monkey Banana Muffins | Refined Sugar & Dairy Free

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The Best Banana Muffins

Recipe yields 12 muffins.

This banana muffin recipe is one of my favourites and it just so happens to be healthier than most! I used my basic banana muffin recipe, drizzled them with chocolate & peanut butter and topped them with walnuts to make them the Chunky Monkey version. You can also leave them as is cause they are also really good just on their own!!

  • These muffins are easy to make with basic ingredients. Only one bowl required.
  • They’re made with 100% whole grains, yet they’re fluffy and delicious. No one will know the difference.
  • They’re also naturally sweetened rather than loaded with refined sugar. You can use maple syrup (or honey) offers a touch of extra flavour!
  • They are dairy free and use either olive oil or coconut oil instead of butter.
  • These muffins also freeze well. Just defrost individual muffins in the microwave for 30 to 60 seconds, or until gently warmed through.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil or extra-virgin olive oil. I prefer coconut oil as sometimes you can slightly taste the olive oil depending on the brand you use.
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup or honey
  • 2 eggs, preferably at room temperature
  • 1 1/3 cup packed mashed ripe bananas (about 4 bananas)
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice or water (I used almond milk)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling on top
  • 1 3/4 cups regular or white whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup old-fashioned oats, plus more for sprinkling on top
  • Optional: once out of the oven and cooled drizzle with melted chocolate (dairy free if avoiding dairy), melted peanut butter and add chopped walnuts or pecans to make these Chunky Monkey style!

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit (165 degrees Celsius). Grease all 12 cups of your muffin tin with butter or non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the coconut oil and maple syrup together with a whisk. Add the eggs and beat well. Mix in the mashed bananas and milk, followed by the baking soda, vanilla extract, salt and cinnamon.
  3. Add the flour and oats to the bowl and mix with a large spoon, just until combined. If you’d like to add any additional mix-ins, like nuts, chocolate or blueberries, fold them in now.
  4. Divide the batter evenly between the muffin cups, filling each cup about two-thirds full. Sprinkle the tops of the muffins with a small amount of oats (about 1 tablespoon in total).
  5. Bake muffins for 22 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.
  6. Place the muffin tin on a cooling rack to cool.
  7. Once cooled drizzle with melted peanut butter and chocolate and top with walnuts if you want!

*These muffins will keep at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. They keep well in the freezer in a freezer-safe bag for up to 3 months (just defrost individual muffins as needed).

Enjoy!!

xo Chelsea

Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins  -whole grain, refined sugar/dairy free & packed with zucchiniImage 2019-03-07 at 7.09 PM.jpg

These Double Chocolate Chip Zucchini muffins are made with whole food ingredients, contain all natural sugars, are dairy free, and packed full of zucchini.  They taste just like a chocolate cake but are surprisingly good for you as they are made with an organic whole 4 grain flour blend from Yupik, applesauce, maple syrup, zucchini, and coconut oil.  My kids gobbled these up pretty quick!  I mean who doesn’t love a good double chocolate chip muffin that tastes like a decedent chocolate cake? I sure do and these are ones you can feel good about eating!

I used a few ingredients from Yupik which is an online retailer that sells high quality, organic, natural food products.  They sell everything from nuts, snack mixes, flours, dried fruit and a whole lot more. I’m obsessed with their organic date powder which is just ground up dates and use it as a natural sweetener all the time!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour (I used this gluten free 4 Grain flour from Yupik)
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder (I used this one from Yupik)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cup grated zucchini (about 1½ zucchinis), lightly squeeze the liquid from the zucchini
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (I used these ones from Yupik)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare a muffin pan by greasing the bottom and sides (you can grease with coconut oil, butter)
  3. In a medium bowl, add flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, and ground nutmeg. Whisk together.
  4. In a large bowl, add maple syrup, unsweetened applesauce, coconut oil, egg, and vanilla extract. Whisk together until smooth.
  5. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients until everything is combined.
  6. Fold in the grated zucchini and chocolate chips.
  7. Add the batter to prepared muffin pan.
  8. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!!

xo Chelsea

 

Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Soup

Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Soup

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This flavorful roasted red pepper soup is a blend of red peppers, tomatoes, onions, and garlic. It’s delicious, healthy and easy to make – just roast all the veggies on one baking sheet, then blend it all together in your Vitamix. Perfect served warm or serve as a chilled gazpacho on a hot summer day!

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 or 9 tomatoes, cored and quartered
  • 3 red bell peppers, seeded and quartered
  • 2 small yellow onions, cut into wedges
  • 6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 5 cups vegetable broth
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • olive oil
  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees with two racks placed in the middle of the oven.
  2. Grease two (preferably rimmed) baking sheets. Place tomatoes, skin side down, on one of them.
  3. Toss the onions and red peppers lightly with olive oil. Place on the other baking sheet, with the red peppers skin side down. Place the unpeeled garlic on the sheet, too.
  4. Bake for 45 minutes.
  5. Heat your vegetable broth on medium-high heat. Peel your garlic and toss it in. Add roasted vegetables and simmer for ten minutes.
  6. Purée the soup using an immersion blender or transfer the soup to a blender, several cups at a time.
  7. Enjoy!

*Yields about 12 cups of soup

xo Chelsea

Pumpkin Spice Muffins

Pumpkin Spice Muffins

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Now that fall is in full swing I have been spending more time in my kitchen. The cooler weather makes me want to put on my comfy clothes and make healthy baked goods and soups.
These muffins are one of my favs in the fall and I love how they can be made with just one bowl!!!   I’m all about quick, easy, and minimal clean up and these muffins are just that.
These are perfect for making for school lunches or for a quick grab and go snack. They are packed full of healthy nutritious ingredients.  Made with whole grain flour, oats, and honey these muffins are dairy free and naturally sweetened.   Pumpkin is also packed full of fibre, vitamin A (which is anti aging by the way) , and antioxidants. Bonus!

INGREDIENTS

  • ⅓ cup melted coconut oil or extra-virgin olive oil*
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup or honey
  • 1/4 unsweetened apple sauce
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice (I used unsweetened almond milk)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling on top
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice or cloves
  • 1 ¾ cups white whole wheat flour or regular whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup old-fashioned oats, plus more for sprinkling on top

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. If necessary, Grease cups of your muffin tin with butter or non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the oil and maple syrup or honey together with a whisk. Add the eggs, and beat well. Mix in the pumpkin purée and milk, followed by the baking soda, vanilla extract, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice.
  3. Add the flour and oats to the bowl and mix with a large spoon, just until combined. If you’d like to add any additional mix-ins**, like nuts, chocolate or dried fruit, fold them in now.
  4. Divide the batter evenly between the muffin cups. For these muffins, it’s ok to fill the cups a little higher than you normally would. Sprinkle the tops of the muffins with a small amount of oats, followed by a sprinkle of cinnamon. Bake muffins for 22 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.
  5. Place the muffin tin on a cooling rack to cool. These muffins are delicate until they cool down (you have been warned!). You might need to run a butter knife along the outer edge of the muffins to loosen them from the pan. I like to use muffin liners as I find it a bit easier to handle that way.
  6. These muffins will keep at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. They keep well in the freezer in a freezer-safe bag for up to 3 months (just defrost individual muffins as needed).

xo Chelsea

Healthy Whole Wheat Banana Bread

Healthy Whole Wheat Banana Bread- refined sugar & dairy free.

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This banana bread is one of my favourites, is really easy to make and full of healthy whole food ingredients.  Made with 100% whole wheat flour and and a touch of natural honey or maple syrup for sweetness they are made with just a few simple ingredients. I also love that they are full of fibre, potassium and also dairy free!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 cup honey or maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil or grapeseed oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 mashed ripe bananas
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus more to swirl on top
  • 1 3/4 cups white whole wheat flour or regular whole wheat flour
  • Totally optional: 1/2 cup mix-ins like chopped walnuts or pecans, chocolate chips, fresh banana slices.

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit (165 degrees Celsius) and grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the oil and honey together together with a whisk. Add the eggs and beat well, then whisk in the mashed bananas and milk. (If your coconut oil solidifies on contact with cold ingredients, simply let the bowl rest in a warm place for a few minutes, like on top of your stove, or warm it for about 10 seconds in the microwave.)
  3. Add the baking soda, vanilla, salt and cinnamon, and whisk to blend. Lastly, switch to a big spoon and stir in the flour, just until combined. Some lumps are ok! If you’re adding any additional mix-ins, gently fold them in now.
  4. Pour the batter into your greased loaf pan and sprinkle lightly with cinnamon. (I used a mini loaf pan and decreased the bake time to 30 mins)
  5. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the bread cool in the loaf pan for 10 minutes, then transfer it to a wire rack to cool for 20 minutes before slicing.

xo Chelsea

Tropical Golden Mylk Smoothie Bowl

Tropical Golden Mylk Smoothie Bowl

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This Tropical Smoothie Bowl is super easy to make and is packed with healthy ingredients to jump start your day.  Full of vitamin rich mangos, banana, cauliflower, and Golden Mylk, this antioxidant and anti inflammatory power bowl can help to clear your skin, alkalize your body, reduce inflammation, and improve digestion.

Have you ever tried frozen cauliflower in your smoothies?  I recently tried it and like it! I find it adds a creaminess as well as helps to add substance without adding extra fruit/sugar.  Cauliflower is also full of fibre, vitamin C, and potassium which makes it a great addition to this bowl.

I also used Botanica’s Turmeric Golden Mylk which is a modern take on a traditional Ayurvedic beverage.  Made from a whole food blend of turmeric, dates, coconut, cardamom, ashwagandha, black pepper, and cinnamon, I find it has a nice taste compared to straight turmeric and it adds a nice flavour to the smoothie bowl.

Turmeric as most of you know is an incredibly potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric helps with a number of health concerns such as arthritis, eczema, IBS, and other autoimmune diseases because it helps reduce inflammation in the body.  It also aids digestion because it reduces bloating and gas. As well, many studies have shown that curcumin has anticancer effects, particularly that it can kill cancer cells and prevent more from growing.

I hope you enjoy this Tropical Golden Mylk Smoothie Bowl as much as I do!!

For the smoothie bowl
  • 1/2 frozen banana cut into chunks
  • 1/2 cup frozen cauliflower florets (I steamed my cauliflower before freezing)
  • 1 cup frozen mango chunks
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut or almond milk more, if needed
  • 1 tsp Botanica’s Turmeric Golden Mylk https://botanicahealth.com/product/botanica-turmeric-golden-mylk/
Suggested toppings
  • Kiwi slices
  • Sliced banana
  • Coconut chips
  • 1/2 small banana sliced, or 6-8 dried banana slices
  • 1/4 cup granola 
  • Berries
  • Orange or grapefruit slices

Blend ingredients for the smoothie bowl in a high powered blender, slowly adding the milk as you go until everything blends together smoothly!

xo Chelsea

Healthy Homemade Gummy Bears

Healthy Homemade Gummy Bears

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These healthier homemade gummy bears are super easy to make and are made with unsweetened fruit juice and have no added sugar.  Not only do these have way less sugar than regular gummies, they are made using Organika’s Bovine Gelatine Powder which is high in protein, great for gut health, and reduces joint pain.  It is also known to help increase brain function and reduce the signs of aging.  Bonus!!!  I promise they look WAY more difficult to make than they are- all you need is some unsweetened juice, gelatin powered, and a gummy mold!!

Feel free to get creative as there are so many options of what kind of juice you can use.  I have used fresh pressed juice, unsweetened fruit/veggie juice, as well as different smoothie blends and they all turned out well. I have also used this recipe to make rosé gummies and simply replaced the juice with a cup of rosé wine!!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup unsweetened 100% juice
  • 2 tbsp gelatin grass-fed is best (I like Organika’s Bovine Gelatin Powder)
  • Silicone gummy molds (I ordered mine on Amazon) or an 8″ x 8″ glass baking dish

Instructions:

  1. Pour the juice into small saucepan.
  2. Bloom your gelatin- this is done by adding it to the top of the juice and letting it sit for 3 minutes until it appears almost wrinkly and somewhat absorbed.
  3. Stir the gelatin well into the juice, then heat gently on a low temp until the juice is very warm but not boiling. This is important, do not overheat!!
  4. Keep stirring until the gelatin is fully dissolved.
  5. Pour the mixture into silicone molds or an 8-inch by 8-inch glass baking dish that’s been very lightly greased with coconut oil. You don’t have to grease the silicone molds if you decide to use those. How many gummy snacks you’ll end up with depends on how big your molds are.
  6. Refrigerate the Homemade Gummy Snacks for at least 2 hours, then pop them out of the molds. You may want to freeze them for 15 minutes before you try to unmold.

Recipe Notes

Keep these gummy snacks refrigerated in a covered container. They keep for 3 to 5 days. If you want them to be a bit sweeter you can also add a tbsp of honey to the juice after the gelatin while heating the mixture.

xo Chelsea

 

Peach Freezling

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What exactly is Freezling you ask??? It just may be my new favourite drink and it is a spin-off of the super popular frosé-frozen rosé wine slush.  Freezling however is made using riesling instead of rosé and it’s perfect for a hot summer day.  It’s super versatile and can be made by blending any of your favourite fruit and Kitsch’s Maria’s Block Riesling which is a classic style Riesling with notes of peach, appricot, and nectarine!

Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!!
Ingredients
  • 1 bottle Kitsch Maria’s Block Riesling plus more for blending *see note
  • 6 fresh peaches (peeled and sliced)
  • ½ cup simple syrup (mix 1/4 cup sugar with 1/4 cup hot water and mix to dissolve sugar)
  • 1/2 lemon juiced
  • 2 oz Triple Sec
Instructions
  1. Add fresh peaches, simple syrup, lemon juice, Triple Sec and Kitsch Riesling to a blender.
  2. Blend until completely smooth.
  3. Pour mixture into ice cube trays or a pan.
  4. Freeze.
  5. Place frozen mixture in a blender. ( I never measure them out. I just toss a handful in and add more if I need it)
  6. Add a splash of wine to make blending easier.
  7. Blend until slush consistency (add a splash of wine to thin it out if needed)
  8. Pour into wine glasses, add a straw (if desired) and serve immediately.
  9. Garnish with fresh fruit like peaches, lemons, or limes.
Notes

You’ll need to add a few splashes of wine to the frozen ice cube for blending. You can reserve a small amount of wine or just use some wine from another bottle, which is what I do.

ADD ice! If you like for your slushies to have those tiny little ice chips then throw in a few ice cubes and a little bit more wine!

Serves 4

Xo Chelsea

Birthday Cake Protein Donuts

Birthday Cake Protein Donuts

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Donuts have to be one of my all time favourite treats ever since I was a little girl.  While I’ll often allow myself to indulge in the ‘real deal’ on occasion, I love that I can whip up a fresh batch of protein donuts that are a little easier on the waistline in no time.  These donuts are baked not fried and made with coconut flour, protein powder, and a no calorie sweetner so they have way less calories and fat than your traditional donut.   They are also sugar free and gluten free.  I’ve experiemented with a few different recipes and have finally found one that I love! These are super easy to make, soft and really delicious. I also love that you can top them with your favourite flavour of icing and sprinkles.  I mean who doesn’t love a fresh donut topped with icing and sprinkles?? I sure do!!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup vanilla protein powder (I like Perfect Protein by Botanica Health), you can purchase it here at: https://botanicahealth.com/product/perfect-protein-vanilla/
  • 1 whole egg
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/3 cup sweetener (I used Swerve)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
For the frosting
  • 1/2 cup butter room temperature
  • 1 cup Swerve no calorie icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons milk of choice (I used unsweetened almond milk)
INSTRUCTIONS:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F
  2. Mix dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Mix wet ingredients in a separate mixing bowl.
  4. Pour the dry mix into the wet mix and mix until fully incorporated and smooth.
  5. Pour your batter into your donut pan.
  6. Bake for 15 min or until the bottom is a golden brown and the top bounces back up when touched.
For the frosting:

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients into a stand mixer and blend on high until smooth.
  2. Continue to add additional milk for desired consistency. Makes 1 1/4 cup or 10 ounces.
  3. Does not need refrigeration once on donuts.
  4. Unused frosting can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks or frozen for up to 3 months.

Recipe makes 6 donuts.

Hope you enjoy these as much as I do!!

xo Chelsea

 

Fresh Thai Noodle Salad

Fresh Thai Noodle Salad

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I’m a huge fan of ethnic food and love dishes that pack a ton of flavour.  This cold Thai Noodle Salad is so fresh and flavourful and it’s perfect for dinner or brining as a dish to a potluck. It is really easy to make and it is better when made in advance so it has time to marinate.  The recipe serves 6 and is always a hit when I make it for friends.  Hope you enjoy this one as much as I do!!

Vinaigrette:

1/4 cup Fresh Lime Juice

3 TBSP. Vegetable Oil

3 TBSP. Soy Sauce

2 TBSP. Brown Sugar

1 TBSP. Sesame Oil

1 TBSP. Minced Garlic

1 TBSP. Grated Lime Zest

1 TBSP. Minced Jalapeno Pepper

Salt and Pepper to Taste

Salad Ingredients:

1/2 LB (one bunch) Green Beans or Asparagus Spears Trimmed

8 oz. Brown Rice Noodles or Fresh Chinese Egg Noodles

2 Cups Peeled, Shredded Carrots

1/2 Cup Slivered Red Peppers (I added orange ones too)

1 Cup Thinly Sliced Green Onions

Cilantro (if desired)

Directions: 

  1. Wish vinaigrette ingredients together and set aside.
  2. Cut green beans or asparagus diagonally into 1/2″ pieces.  Cook in boiling water until tender crisp (be careful not to overcooked!), plunge into cold water (to retain colour) and set aside.
  3. Cook noodles according to package directions then drain.
  4. Toss cooled noodles with  with vegetables and vinaigrette.
  5. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.
  6. Garnish with green onion and cilantro before serving.
  7. Enjoy!

xo Chelsea