Showing posts with label milk - vanilla almond. Show all posts
Showing posts with label milk - vanilla almond. Show all posts

July 22, 2014

Strawberry & Peanut Butter Whole Wheat Oat Muffins

Strawberry & Peanut Butter Whole Wheat Oat Muffins

Somehow I always end up missing strawberry season because it seems to go by so quickly, so this year I was determined to bake at least one thing with strawberries. 

We don't really want a lot of desserts around right now though, so I decided to bake something on the healthier side.  And because we are only two people, I wanted something that can freeze well.  Enter muffins!

I had it in my head to make peanut butter and strawberry muffins, which surprisingly I could find almost no recipes for, so I decided to make up my own.  Peanut butter and jam goes together, so why not pb and fresh strawberries!

Strawberry & Peanut Butter Whole Wheat Oat Muffins

Because I wanted these to be on the healthier side, I used all whole wheat flour combined with oats, only a bit of pure maple syrup for sweetener instead of sugar, natural peanut butter, unsweetened almond milk, only a tablespoon of oil, and fresh strawberries instead of jam.

While they're not exactly low-fat because of the peanut butter, and not vegan because I included an egg (I haven't really had success with eggless baked goods in the past and don't have any problems personally with an egg being included), I still consider them a wholesome snack that is perfect for afternoon cravings as they satisfy hunger pretty well!

Strawberry & Peanut Butter Whole Wheat Oat Muffins

These were photographed over a day after making them, so the strawberries I had placed on top aren't looking so hot, but I assure you that these still turned out great!

I also love slathering these in chia jam for more strawberry goodness.  If you've never made chia jam before, I encourage you to give it a try!  It's super easy and quick to make and so much better for you than regular jam.  I used the jam recipe from these strawberry oat squares by Oh She Glows, another strawberry recipe I'll have to try soon before the season is over!

Strawberry & Peanut Butter Whole Wheat Oat Muffins


Strawberry & Peanut Butter Whole Wheat Oat Muffins

Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients:

1-1/4 cups whole wheat flour
3/4 cups rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1/2 cup natural peanut butter, melted slightly to mix in better
1/4 cup pure maple syrup (or I used 2 T maple syrup + 2 T honey)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 cup diced fresh strawberries
12 slices strawberries for the tops, if desired

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Spray a regular 12-cup muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray.

Whisk the dry ingredients (flour through salt) together in a medium bowl.  In a separate bowl, mix the wet ingredients until just blended (egg through oil).  Add the wet ingredients along with the diced strawberries to the dry ingredients and fold together until just combined.

Divide batter evenly among the 12 muffin cups.  If desired, add a strawberry slice to the top of each muffin.  Bake muffins in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in middle of a muffin comes out clean.  Let cool for a couple minutes in the pan then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

June 19, 2014

(Healthy) Strawberry & Chocolate Chia Pudding

Healthy Strawberry and Chocolate Chia Pudding

I've been wanting to try chia pudding for so long now - I think I've had this mango coconut chia pudding bookmarked for two years - but for some reason I've never gotten around to it.  Lately I've been craving dessert much more, likely because the days feel longer, I've been staying up later, and thus need more food to sustain me, so I've been trying to find healthy desserts that still satisfy a craving.  So when I saw Dietitian Debbie's beautiful layered chocolate and strawberry chia pudding recently I decided to give it a try!

Healthy Strawberry and Chocolate Chia Pudding

I feel like chia seeds are everywhere lately, but if you haven't heard of this little superfood before, it's basically a tiny seed that's packed with nutrition, including lots of fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, other vitamins, minerals, and antioxidantst, and even protein!

And because they can absorb somewhere around 10-12 times their weight (I've seen various numbers floating around) and take on a sort of gel-like consistency when they do so, they're great for making healthy pudding (though of course, you can use them in many other ways, too)!

Healthy Strawberry and Chocolate Chia Pudding

The version I came up with is different than the original idea, but this pudding is still really easy to make.  Both the chocolate and strawberry portions contain unsweetened vanilla almond milk, chia seeds, and pure maple syrup for sweetener, then the chocolate version has added cocoa powder while the strawberry version contains fresh strawberries and a little vanilla extract.

I also used Oh My Veggies' idea to blend the chia pudding after to give it a smoother texture, but you can leave out this step if you like.  I topped mine with more strawberries and sliced almonds for crunch, but you could use chocolate chips, coconut flakes, or anything else you like!

Healthy Strawberry and Chocolate Chia Pudding

The only difficult part about this recipe is waiting for the pudding to set.  It's best to leave it overnight, but otherwise plan for at least 4-6 hours to let the chia seeds work their magic and turn this into pudding!

This makes a perfect light summer treat that satisfies a dessert craving but leaves you feeling good, and it would also totally be appropriate for breakfast!  Ryan was skeptical about the whole idea but after trying it, he said he could eat it every day, so I'd say it was a big success!

Healthy Strawberry and Chocolate Chia Pudding

Strawberry & Chocolate Chia Pudding

Note: The idea for this recipe was inspired by Dietitian Debbie; ingredient amounts were adapted from All Recipes

Serves 4 (servings are on the smaller side)

Ingredients:

For the Strawberry Layer:
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or your choice of milk)
8oz (half a package) fresh strawberries, chopped
1/4 cup chia seeds
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Chocolate Layer:
1-1/4 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or your choice of milk)
1/4 cup chia seeds
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons cocoa powder

For Topping:
8oz sliced strawberries
Optional: Slivered almonds, chocolate chips, coconut flakes (I used almonds)

Directions:

To prepare strawberry pudding, blend almond milk and strawberries in a blender until smooth.  Transfer to a bowl or container and stir in chia seeds, maple syrup, and vanilla until well combined.  Cover and keep in refrigerator overnight or until set, at least 4 hours.

To prepare chocolate pudding, stir together the almond milk, chia seeds, maple syrup, and cocoa powder, and also store in the fridge along with the strawberry pudding.

When ready, the mixtures should have a more gel-like consistency.  If you like you can serve the pudding as is, but if you want a smoother consistency where you won’t notice the chia seeds as much, transfer each mixture to the blender separately (cleaning in between) and puree until smooth.

To prepare pudding, layer chocolate and strawberry puddings in glasses or bowls with sliced strawberries and almonds in between each layer and on top.  If you like you could also top with chocolate chips and/or coconut flakes and an extra drizzle of maple syrup or honey of it’s not sweet enough for your tastes.

February 12, 2013

Earl Grey Vanilla Tea Pancakes with Honey Tea Syrup

Earl Grey Vanilla Tea Pancakes with Honey Tea Syrup (aka London Fog Pancakes)

Happy Pancake Tuesday!

For those who have never heard of it, Pancake Tuesday (aka Shrove Tuesday, aka Fat Tuesday) falls on the day before Lent every year, and is associated with the practise of using up richer “fatty” foods like eggs, milk, and sugar (hence the pancakes) before the fasting season of Lent begins.

I don’t think it serves much of the same purpose today (at least not for me, as I don’t give anything up for Lent), but it’s still a great excuse to eat pancakes for dinner! Pancake Tuesday in my household always meant a big feast of at least four different types of pancakes for dinner, so you can see how it easily became a favourite holiday for me as a kid. Now that I don’t live at home, I still carry on the tradition of pancakes for dinner for myself, but also use it as a chance to test out new and exciting pancake recipes!

Earl Grey Vanilla Tea Pancakes with Honey Tea Syrup (aka London Fog Pancakes)

Last year I created coffee-flavoured pancakes with my delicious caramel latte pancakes, inspired by my favourite Starbucks latte.  This year I decided to create pancakes inspired by my favourite tea drink, the London Fog. 

A London Fog is a tea latte made with steamed milk, Earl Grey tea, and vanilla syrup.  Apparently Starbucks no longer calls it a London Fog and just uses the much more boring name of Earl Grey Tea Latte, but at Second Cup and Williams you can still order a London Fog, which I think sounds so much classier!

Earl Grey Vanilla Tea Pancakes with Honey Tea Syrup (aka London Fog Pancakes)

To recreate those flavours in pancakes, I knew I needed to infuse Earl Grey Vanilla tea (if you can’t find the vanilla flavour, just use regular Earl Grey) and vanilla extract into the pancakes. Baking with tea can get tricky because unlike coffee, it can be difficult to get a strong tea flavour to come out in the final baked good.

In my first attempt at these, I steeped vanilla almond milk with the tea before mixing the milk into the batter. They turned out well with a lovely Earl Grey fragrance, but the tea flavour wasn’t quite strong enough. In my second attempt, I still steeped the milk but also added a bag of tea to the dry ingredients and infused tea into a honey vanilla syrup to serve with the pancakes.

Earl Grey Vanilla Tea Pancakes with Honey Tea Syrup (aka London Fog Pancakes)

The end result was a light and fluffy stack of pancakes that smells just like a London Fog and has a subtle but very nice tea flavour that I loved! I think the honey syrup makes all the difference in making these resemble tea, so don’t skip it! I made these for breakfast Sunday morning and they made our apartment smell so nice – even later in the afternoon my sister kept commenting that she would get a whiff of tea wherever my pancakes had been (I had to carry them to a few different spots for photographs)!  And I saved just enough leftovers to eat for dinner tonight, which I’m quite looking forward to!

Sorry for the somewhat long post, and if you skipped by everything above just to see what the main point was, it’s that tonight it is perfectly acceptable, if not strongly encouraged, to eat pancakes for dinner – Happy Pancake Tuesday!

Earl Grey Vanilla Tea Pancakes with Honey Tea Syrup (aka London Fog Pancakes)

Earl Grey Vanilla Tea Pancakes with Honey Tea Syrup (aka London Fog Pancakes)

Makes about 9-10 pancakes

Ingredients:

For the Syrup:
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons water
1 Earl Grey Vanilla tea bag
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Pancakes:
1-1/2 cups vanilla almond milk
4 Earl Grey Vanilla tea bags, divided
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1 large egg
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Directions:

First prepare the honey tea syrup.  Bring honey and water to a simmer in a small saucepan.  Add teabag and remove from heat.  Let steep for at least 5 minutes.  Remove teabag, scraping off as much honey as you can (discard) and stir in the vanilla.  Transfer to a small container and place in the refrigerator to cool and thicken.

Next prepare the steeped almond milk.  Add vanilla almond milk and 3 tea bags to a small saucepan.  Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat and let gently simmer for 3-5 minutes.  Remove teabags, squeezing the liquid out as you remove them (discard tea bags).  Let milk cool in the refrigerator.

Mix the dry ingredients for the pancakes: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and sugar.  Stir in the contents of 1 tea bag.  My tea was very finely ground, but if yours is not, grind it first in a food processor. 

Once the milk has cooled, prepare the wet ingredients by whisking together the egg, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract. 

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and gently fold together until just incorporated.  Do not overmix.  Heat a large non-stick skillet or griddle over medium heat.  Spray with non-stick cooking spray if desired (I find that I don’t need to).  Spoon 1/4 to 1/3 cup batter (depending on desired size – I used 1/3 cup measuring cup but didn’t fill it all the way) onto the pan and use your fingers to spread it out a little into a circle.  Cook until bubbles begin to form on surface, a couple of minutes, then flip over and repeat until golden brown on both sides.  Repeat with remaining batter.

Serve pancakes warm with honey syrup.

August 10, 2012

Peanut Butter Banana Popsicles

Peanut Butter Banana Popsicles

This is now the third post I've had to write on a borrowed laptop while mine is being fixed, and I've been so lost without my usual programs and editing software!  I don't usually do a lot of editing to my photos - just adjusting the brightness, contrast, and sharpness - but it's been especially difficult with the screen I'm working with now because the picture seems to change depending on what program I'm viewing it with; I'll try adjusting a photo in an online editing program, then I open it in a picture viewer and it has completely different colouring - so frustrating!  So I have no idea what these photos are looking like to you, and I apologize if what I think is a picture of a light brown popsicle is actually purple or green! (Okay so I'm exaggerating, but seriously, why can't all computer screens be the same?  I hate when I think I have a great looking photo and then look at it on a different computer program and it looks completely different!)

Quick update on my laptop while I'm on the topic (mostly because I'm whiny, but also because there's a lesson in here for others in a similar position) - the good news is that I found out it has been fixed and there was actually quite a lot wrong with it, but the bad news is that the manufacturer apparently needed to reset my laptop to factory settings, thus deleting everything on my computer.  I'm so thankful that I backed up all my documents before I sent it away, but I wasn't planning on having all of my programs deleted, so it's going to be a fun week ahead trying to find all my old cds and serial numbers and reinstall everything!  Thinking of how long it first took me to just to configure my laptop to be able to print to the wireless printers at school makes me want to cry, but I'm trying to look on the bright side that my computer should be faster and better now!  So lesson learned to anyone else about to send a computer away to be fixed: make sure you back everything up first (and make sure you're always backing everything up on a regular basis!) and make sure you keep all your cds and programs in one place so it's easy to reinstall them - so far I've only found one and I'm cursing myself for not keeping them organized!

Peanut Butter Banana Popsicles

Moving on from my small first-world problems,  I have another popsicle recipe for you guys today!  I love the combination of peanut butter and banana, so I decided to find out how the flavours would work together in a cool and creamy popsicle.  These are ridiculously easy to make - there are only three ingredients - but they combine to make a creamy, smooth popsicle with a sweet banana flavour and hint of peanut butter that is so good!

These make a great healthy summer snack - they're a little more filling than regular popsicles but I love knowing that I'm filling myself up with vitamins, calcium, potassium, protein, and other good stuff beyond just sugar and water!

Peanut Butter Banana Popsicles

Peanut Butter Banana Popsicles

Makes at least 5-6 popsicles, depending on size of popsicle mold

Ingredients:

3 small bananas (or 2 large)
1/2 cup vanilla almond milk
1/4 cup smooth peanut butter

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.  Pour into popsicles molds (mine filled 6) and freeze.

Notes – if you're using unsweetened milk instead of vanilla almond milk, you may wish to add sweetener and a splash of vanilla extract, though I haven't tested the recipe this way!

August 01, 2012

Chocolate Cherry Almond Breakfast Quinoa

Chocolate Cherry Almond Breakfast Quinoa

First off, sorry for the lack of blog activity lately!  I brought my laptop (aka my only computer) in to get fixed the other day because it was heating up a lot and the fan was always running so loudly that I couldn't even bring it to meetings anymore.  I thought it would be a quick fix and I'd get it back at the end of the day, but it turns out it's in much worse shape than I thought and it had to be sent away for up to two weeks!  I tried not to overreact too much when they told me that, but for a person who is on their laptop pretty much every single second of the day and depends on it for everything, it's hard to see it taken apart into little pieces and sent away, and to be left with no computer!  Luckily I was able to get a backup of what was on there today so I can steal Ryan's computer for a bit to write up a quick blog post so you guys don't think I forgot about you!

Because I can only type at a fraction of my normal speed on an unfamiliar keyboard, I thought today would be a good day to share a quick and easy recipe.  And since I just shared five ways to use quinoa in a healthy summer salad, I thought it would be fun to follow that up with a healthy, summery way to eat quinoa for breakfast!

Breakfast quinoa is kind of like oatmeal, but with more protein and less mushiness.  Cooking the quinoa in vanilla almond milk gives it a sweet and nutty flavour, and it's very hands-off so you can easily prepare it on a weekday morning while you're getting ready for work.  Combine it with fresh cherries, crunchy almonds, and a tiny bit of dark chocolate chips to add the perfect bit of sweetness, and you have a pretty amazing breakfast!

Chocolate Cherry Almond Breakfast Quinoa

Chocolate Cherry Almond Breakfast Quinoa

Recipe by Once Upon a Cutting Board

Serves 1

Ingredients:

1/2 cup vanilla almond milk (or unsweetened milk + sweetener of choice)
1/4 cup quinoa, rinsed
1/2 cup pitted quartered cherries
2 tablespoons sliced or slivered almonds
1 tablespoon dark chocolate chips

Directions:

Bring milk to a boil in a small saucepan.  Add quinoa, cover, reduce to a low simmer, and cook 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, toast almonds in a dry skillet over medium heat until golden brown and fragrant, which should only take a few minutes.

Remove quinoa from heat, keep covered, and let sit 5 minutes, until milk is absorbed. If you are using unsweetened milk, you may wish to add a bit of sweetener at this point (to taste, you could use agave, honey, or brown sugar), then recover and let sit 5 minutes.

Add cherries, almonds, and chocolate chips to the quinoa, stir, and serve warm.

September 27, 2011

Apple Pie Smoothie

apple pie smoothie
When I first heard of an apple pie smoothie, I was amazed – Could it be true that in only a few minutes you can whip up a guilt-free, drinkable version of apple pie? The answer: YES!

I created my own version of an apple pie smoothie that smells and tastes just like apple pie – it’s soo good! Not only is it easy and quick to make, but it’s also pretty healthy – in addition to the apple, it contains non-fat yogurt, almond milk, spices (did you know cinnamon is good for you?), and just a teaspoon of sugar. I only used a small amount of cooking spray instead of butter to cook the apples, but if you want to save those extra few calories you could try the microwave method from How Sweet It Is and let me know how it works! You could also play around with the ingredients to make it even healthier by adding protein powder for a more substantial breakfast, or add some spinach for added nutrition to turn it into a Green Monster!

The hardest part about making this smoothie is waiting for it to cool before you can drink it, since it smells so good after you blend it. I stuck mine in the freezer to speed up the process but it was still torture waiting for it to cool down! When it was ready I gulped it down in what seemed like seconds, then immediately regretted not taking my time to enjoy it more. I guess that means I’ll have to make it again asap!

apple pie smoothie
Apple Pie Smoothie

Serves 1

Ingredients:

Cooking spray
1 cup chopped peeled apple (about 1 small apple)
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon, divided
1/2 cup nonfat vanilla yogurt
1/2 cup vanilla almond milk (if you don’t have vanilla milk, use regular milk and add a bit of vanilla extract to the smoothie)
Pinch of nutmeg
Pinch of allspice

Directions:

Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat, and spray with cooking spray. Add the diced peeled apple, along with the brown sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Cook until apples are lightly browned and soft, stirring often, about 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer the mixture to a blender.

Add vanilla yogurt, vanilla almond milk, nutmeg, allspice, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon to the blender. Blend until smooth. Transfer smoothie to fridge or freezer to cool before drinking. Sprinkle with additional cinnamon if desired.

Ingredient Index

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