Healthy Apple Crisp Muffins- no oil, no sugar, no dairy, no flour!

Healthy Apple Crisp Muffins- oil, sugar, dairy, and flour free!

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Muffins are an easy and highly portable breakfast/snack option but are typically laden with sugar and oil which can make them less than healthy.  I’m always looking for ways to make things a bit more nutritious and try to avoid refined sugar, bleached white flour, and butter when I can.  Don’t get me wrong it’s not that I never make anything with butter, flour, or sugar, heck I love a good ol’ fashioned shortbread cookie and couldn’t live without making some of those around the holidays but I do try to make small changes when I can to ensure that we eat healthy whole foods as a family!

I made these oatmeal muffins without flour, dairy, sugar, or oil and they turned out so well! My family ate the whole batch in 2 days!!!! They are made with apple sauce, whole grain oat flour, almond milk, chunks of apple, and natural honey.

Here is what makes these a little more nutritious:

  • Toasted oatmeal replaces bleached white flour. (Use oats labeled gluten-free for healthy gluten-free muffins.)
  • Bananas/applesauce keep the muffins moist instead of the usual oil or butter.
  • A bit of honey sweetens the recipe instead of refined white sugar.

These can be made using gluten free oats to make them gluten free and the best part, you can customize the batter to make your favourite muffin flavour! I used chopped apple and shredded zucchini for this batch and they were really good!! Zucchini is a great way to sneak in some extra veggies and it also helps to add moisture to the batter without using oil or butter.

I did add a crumb topping to mine which my kids absolutely loved. I mean who doesn’t love a little oat crisp on top?! The extra sweet crunchy oats really add another layer of deliciousness. You can omit this however if you prefer. I love this recipe because you can get creative and add your favourite add ins.  I have used this basic oat muffin recipe a lot and like to swap out what I put in them to switch things up!

Here are some of my favourite add ins and the recipe below:
  • frozen blueberries *Tip-I keep mine in the freezer until the very end when I’m ready to add them to the batter, then I rinse them in cold water and pat dry.  This will keep them from turning your batter blue or purple!
  • chocolate chips
  • 1/2 zucchini and 1/2 apple
  • 1/2 walnuts and 1/2 raisins
  • fresh or frozen raspberries

Muffin Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ cups old-fashioned oats ( 2 cups ground, 1/2 cup whole)
  • 2 Tbsp old-fashioned oats for muffin tops (unless adding crumb topping-see below for ingredients and recipe)
  • 3 large overripe bananas (1.5 cup mashed or or 1.5 cup applesauce- I used applesauce)
  • 1 cup add ins (1 cup blueberries, raspberries, OR 1/2 cup grated zucchini and 1/2 chopped apple as an example) you can get creative here!  I added 1/2 cup grated zucchini and 1/2 finely chopped apple. *Note- squeeze out excess water from zucchini before adding
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 3/4 cup milk (I used almond milk)
  • 2 tsp real vanilla
  • tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • muffin tin

 

Instructions:
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place oats on a baking sheet and toast until lightly browned, stirring once (about 4 to 6 minutes). Do not let these get too toasted! Then cool to room temperature. *Note-If you are in a hurry you can skip this step, however the toasting adds flavour!)
  2. Divide oats into portions of 1.5 cups, 1 cup and 2 Tbsp
  3. Turn oven heat up to 350 degrees.
  4. Place 1.5 cups of oats in a food processor and blend/pulse until they reach a rough, flour like consistency.
    Healthy Zucchini Muffins contain no oil, no refined sugar, and no flour. The oil and sugar are replaced with ripe bananas and the flour is replaced with whole grain oats. Zucchini and spices give the muffins classic zucchini bread flavor. Enjoy a fall favorites with no gui
  5. Mash bananas well, they should have no lumps. I use my mixer to mash them before adding the other wet ingredients.
  6. Add eggs, honey, milk and vanilla. Mix to combine.
  7. Add dry ingredients (including the ground oats and 1 cup whole oats) to wet ingredients and mix until just incorporated. Allow these to sit for 10 minutes to soak the oats.
  8. Optional: Fold in approximately 1 cup fruit (I like them with lots of fruit!), raisins or nuts.
  9. Scoop into muffin tin, lined with muffin wrappers (makes 12 muffins).
  10. Sprinkle muffin tops with the 2 Tbsp of reserved oats or crumb topping (see recipe below) and press lightly to make sure they stick.
  11. Bake at 350 for about 20 -23 minutes, a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin should come out clean.

Crumb Topping-

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cups coconut oil (in liquid form)- add an extra 1-2 tbsp if your mixture seems too dry once mixed.
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup almond meal
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions:

  1. Whisk the coconut oil and honey together until smooth. Place the rolled oats, pecans, almond meal, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. Add the coconut oil and honey mixture; stir until combined. Add your mixture to the top of the muffins just before putting them in the oven.

2. Enjoy!!

xo Chelsea

Easy Yogurt Breakfast Popsicles

Easy Breakfast Yogurt Popsicles

Popsicles for breakfast??? Yes please!! These super easy popsicles take just 5 mins to make and they are healthy enough to eat for breakfast.  Made with greek yogurt, fresh fruit, and topped with granola, they make a complete breakfast!

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My kids think they are getting a treat every am but little do they know these popsicles pack some good nutrition.  The greek yogurt provides calcium and protein, the fresh fruit provides a ton of vitamins, and the granola packs extra protein and fibre.

You can use any fruit you like and if you are vegan you can use a dairy free yogurt instead of Greek yogurt.  The combinations are endless and they are a great summer treat for those looking for a healthy option!

Yield: 6-8 Popsicles

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 4 hours 5 minutes (to freeze)

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Greek Yogurt (or vegan yogurt of choice)
  • 1/2 Cup Milk (almond milk/coconut milk for dairy free)
  • 2 tsp Honey (maple syrup if you are vegan)
  • 1/2 Cup Granola
  • 1 Cup Berries/chopped Fruits

Directions

  1. Mix together the milk, yogurt and 1 tsp of the honey.
  2. Divide the mixture between your popsicle molds.
  3. Place a few berries into each mould.
  4. Mix the last teaspoon of honey with the granola (you can place the honey in the microwave for 10 sec if you are struggling to mix it) and top the yoghurt with a little granola mixture.
  5. Place a wooden ice cream stick into each mould and place the popsicles into the freezer for at least 4 hours before consuming.
  6. To remove the popsicles, run the mould under a little hot water until they come loose.
  7. Enjoy!

xo Chelsea

 

Bliss Balls-Healthy No Bake Chocolate Coconut Snowballs

Bliss Balls- Healthy No Bake Coconut Snowballs

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I call these bite sized little morsels Bliss Balls. They are gluten-free and a healthier version of a Bounty Bar. I don’t know about you but I LOVE the combination of coconut and chocolate. This year I was looking for something a little healthier to make for Christmas. I wanted something that wasn’t full of processed sugar and flour. These little treats fit the bill and are perfect to give away as a little gift to friends and family during the holidays.

While they still have sugar in them, with the maple syrup and the dark chocolate, they are WAY healthier than the original version. The dark chocolate is full of antioxidants, minerals, and fiber. When it comes to dark chocolate the higher the percentage of cocoa the better so I always try to use a min of 70% dark chocolate. This way I maximize the nutritional value of my treats as much as I can.

The coconut is rich in fiber and loaded with essential vitamins/minerals like potassium, magnesium, and calcium.  The added coconut oil is a good source of energy, can boost metabolism, and aids in fat loss when eaten in moderation.

The key here is moderation. Even though these are a healthier version they still contain sugar and are high in fat. While they provide more nutrients, no processed sugar, and are made with a healthier fat you still want to make sure you don’t eat the entire batch. I know you’d likely prefer me to tell you that they are super healthy and that you can eat the whole tin BUT my philosophy is all about moderation. I eat healthy majority of the time but definately enjoy to indulge in some bit sized treats every once in a while!!

That being said I must warn you because these little balls of bliss are so yummy that you may be tempted to eat the whole batch once you try them. I know I had to place the container in the back of my fridge so I didn’t keep reaching for more. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!! The recipe makes about 24 little snowballs.

Ingredients:

2.5 cups of unsweetened coconut

6 tbsp. of coconut oil

6 tbsp. maple syrup

4 tbsp. coconut milk

1 tsp vanilla

Pinch of sea salt

Organic dark chocolate (1 cup)

Directions:

1. Place 1.5 cups of shredded coconut in a food processor. Add 4 tbsp. of coconut oil and blend until it’s creamy like butter, scraping off the sides of the bowl as you go.

2. Add the coconut milk, vanilla, maple syrup, and a small pinch of salt and blend together until smooth.

3. Add the remaining coconut and process at high-speed until a dough forms.

4. Roll the mixture into 1″ balls.  Note-if the mixture is wet and sticky you can place the batter in the fridge for 20 mins until it stiffens and then roll them into balls.

5. Place the balls in the fridge for 1 hour or overnight.

6. Melt your dark chocolate in a small double boiler on minimal heat for 1-2 mins until melted.

7. Take the coconut balls out of the fridge and dip them in the melted chocolate using a spoon, then place them on parchment paper. Sprinkle some shredded coconut on top while they are still wet and then place them in the fridge for 5-10 mins.

Store these Bliss Balls in the fridge to keep them fresh but serve them at room temperature to enjoy!

Happy Holidays!!

Xo Chelsea

*recipe was adapted from Pinterest

Spicy Italian Turkey Burger Soup 🌶

Healthy Spicy Italian Turkey Burger Soup

 

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I’m a bit of a sucker for Italian food and this soup is one of my favourites.  With the colder weather during this time of the year it always makes me want to curl up on the couch and enjoy a nice hot bowl of soup or chili.  When I feel like something hearty but a bit lighter than chili (without all the beans) I like to make this healthy Italian turkey burger soup.  Don’t get me wrong I love beans and I love chili but sometimes I want something just as satisfying that doesn’t leave me feeling bloated like chili can.

This soup is packed full of fibre, antioxidants, vitamins C, K, A, E, biotin, beta-carotene, potassium, flavonoids, phytonutrients, and protein. The balance of healthy carbs, protein, and fats make it a great option for lunch or dinner.

I am a big fan of spicy food so I kicked this soup up a notch and added an extra 🌶 pepper. We like things spicy around my house (well at least my husband and I do) so I typically add the spicy pepper at the end. That way I can remove a few bowls of the soup beforehand so the kids can eat it too.

I often double the batch so I can freeze the leftovers.  It is always nice having meals frozen in the freezer for those nights you need dinner fast and are scrambling for time. This soup is quick and easy to make and there is nothing I find more satisfying than a hot spicy Italian soup to warm you up on a cold winter evening!!

Ingredients:

1.5-2 lb of ground turkey or ground chicken

5-6 fresh tomatoes diced or 1 large can of diced tomatoes.

2 cups of chopped carrots diced small

5 cups of celery diced

2 cloves garlic chopped fine

1 sweet onion diced fine

1 tbs each of fresh thyme, oregano, basil (fresh tastes way better than dried I find)

2 tbs fresh parsley

1 chopped spicy pepper of your choice or chili pepper flakes (omit if you don’t like spice)

4 cups beef broth

4 tbs tomato paste

Olive oil

Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions:

1. Heat oil in a frying pan

2. Add ground turkey and cook until no longer pink.

3. Add onion, garlic, salt and pepper, and sauté until meat is browned and onions are translucent.

4. Put ground turkey in a soup pot.

5. In your frying pan, add the carrots and celery and cook until they are slightly tender. Then add them to the soup pot.

6. Put tomatoes in the frying pan along with the beef broth, tomato paste, and the herbs except the parsley and bring to a boil. Then place them in the soup pot.

7. Stir all ingredients together in the soup pot until combined and summer on low heat for 40 mins. Add parsley at the end and mix together (save a little for the garnish on top if you want!)

8. Enjoy!!

Xo Chelsea