Pumpkin Spice Cake + Maple Frosting (Low Carb, Gluten-Free)

Happy Fall! It’s pumpkin season…as if it hasn’t been all year!

I know summer is normally the craziest time of the year, but I have to say I think fall is going to be a crazy one as well. We just had our first anniversary last week, my birthday is coming up, and lots of out of town weekends & travel upcoming.

I’m definitely not making excuses here, but just setting expectations (Oh man, Sunday night and I’m already into the work jargon…eek.) that I may be a bit slower to post this fall than I will like. Sorry in advance!

Another (exciting) reason is because this week was my first week of health  coaching classes! I finally took the plunge and am doing a year-long certification course through Integrative Nutrition.  Who’s proud of me?! I am, and I’m so excited to learn more about health & wellness from some super credible sources. I’ll share progress along the way! Also, I will be looking for 6 “test subjects” in a few months, so email me if you’re interested in being a healthy guinea pig.

So, this is one of those recipes where I feel like I end up eating more than I’m actually photographing because it’s so good. When it comes to pumpkin anything, my self control = out the window!

Anyways, time for some cake cake cake cake cake.

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Ingredients:

  • Cake:
  • 1 can organic pumpkin puree (just pumpkin, not the pumpkin pie mix)
  • 2 cups of almond flour or almond meal
  • 1/4 cup of coconut flour
  • 1/3 cup vanilla protein powder – I used whey in this recipe, but you could use any kind of protein
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of pumpkin pie seasoning
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup Stevia in the Raw
  • 2 large eggs, or three smaller
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon maple flavoring
  • Cashew or almond milk (Amount depends on what type of protein used)
  • Frosting: 
  • 1 cup Powdered Coconut Sugar
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon unsweetened cashew milk

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How to:

  • Preheat oven to 325 and prepare two 8×8 pans with parchment paper and coconut oil spray. Set aside.
  • Combine all dry ingredients (almond flour, coconut flour, protein, powder and spices).
  • In a seperate bigger bowl, beat together coconut oil, eggs and sugars until well combined.
  • Add pumpkin to the oil and egg mixture. Mix with a hand mixer.
  • Slowly mix flour mixture into the pumpkin mixture by alternating flour and then a dash of cashew milk. The coconut flour in will soak up a lot of the moisture, so the batter will be thick and heavy.
  • Divide batter evenly between the two pans and bake for 34-36 minutes.
  • While cake is baking, use your hand mixer to mix together all glaze ingredients.
  • Once edges appear brown and a fork comes out clean, let the cakes cool on a wire rack.
  • To assemble, lay down the first slab of cake and frost. Add the second layer on top and use the remainder of the frosting to cover the cake – or just cover the top so you can see both layers.
  • Eat within 2-3 days and enjoy!

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Fudgy Zucchini Brownies (Clean, Keto, Low Carb)

Dessert + Veggies = Best combo

When is the last time you had some beautiful green zucchini in your brownies? This was my first time and I’m shocked at how great they taste. I know it sounds weird but you really can’t taste the zucchini – I swear!

Plus, it looks so pretty once you spiralize it… look!

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I remember in high school, my friends and I discovered that you can take a box of brownie mix and mix it with a can of diet coke to make brownies. At the time, I thought there was no other way to make brownies healthy… Ohhhh… how much I’ve learned since then! (For those of you who don’t know, diet soda does NOT = diet food!)

These are made of all healthy and clean ingredients. While I wouldn’t call these a health food, you can definitely argue that these are healthier than your average brownie.

One thing you’ll notice in these is that they are not shy in butter/oil. As some of my friends know, I’m testing out a ketogenic diet, meaning I’m eating little to no carbs (other than from leafy greens), a little protein, but a LOT of fat. Seems totally counterintuitive for health, I know, but if you read a little about it there are some amazing benefits. More to come on this later.

Let’s dive in!

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Ingredients:

  • One medium zucchini
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons of organic coconut oil (I use Kelapo)
  • 6 tablespoons of melted salted butter
  • 1/2 cup Stevia or coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons of cashew butter
  • Dash of vanilla extract (or more if you like vanilla – I am personally obsessed)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch of Himalayan sea salt
  • One bar of the darkest chocolate you can find

How to:

  • Use a spiralizer or a grater to dice up the zucchini into mini pieces – you can leave the skin on
  • Beat the egg and then add all ingredients except for the bar of dark chocolate into one bowl and mix! (I know, so simple)
  • Once it’s mixed well, chop up the dark chocolate and mix in

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(So colorful and so pretty!)

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  • Grease an 8×8 pan with coconut oil spray and pour batter into it. It may appear a bit chunky because of the zucchini – that’s ok

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  • Bake for 12-14 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean

Ok, in this photo, I know they look a bit dry. But I promise you they’re not! The zucchini keeps them moist and fudgy.

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Mmmmmmaybe it’s just me, but I love a good hot brownie right out of the oven. So get yourself a glass of almond milk ready and dig in as soon as they’re done!

If you’re able to make these last for a few days, keep them in the fridge in a tightly sealed container, otherwise the zucchini in them will make them go bad quickly.

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Have you ever used any vegetables in your brownies or cookies? I’d love to hear what you’ve tried!

Clean Walnut + Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

Umm.. YUM. Seriously, what is be better than a warm, gooey, homemade oatmeal cookie? I don’t know if there’s anything better – except for maybe when the recipe is a clean one!

No butter. No oil. YES.

 

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Obviously, this is a cookie so should be consumed as a treat. Just because it’s clean doesn’t mean it’s a diet food!

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These cookies, though…they will be hard to resist. So good my husband took one bite of one and said “you have to take these to work with you tomorrow or they’ll be gone when you get home”. I guess that’s a good sign 😉

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These are pretty basic. You really can’t mess them up. Also, I put chocolate chips and walnuts in mine but you really could put whatever you wanted in here. I thought about doing pistachios, but decided to just go more basic. And…yum.

Ingredients:

  • Dry ingredients:
    • 1 cup of oats
    • 3/4 cup of almond flour or oat flour
    • 1 tablespoon of baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1/4 teaspoon pink Himalayan sea salt
  • Wet ingredients:
    • 1 egg white
    • 1/4 cup of almond butter (any or any kind of nut butter)
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Any “mix-ins”you desire – chocolate chips, walnuts, pecans, dried fruit…etc!

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 365 degrees and prepare parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Set aside.
  • Mix all dry ingredients together (minus the mix-ins) and set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, mix together all wet ingredients until well combined & almond butter is no longer chunky.
  • While stirring, add the wet mixture to the dry. Combine well.
  • Stir in mix-ins!
  • Scoop large balls of dough onto the parchment paper and bake for 12-15 minutes, until you start to notice the cookies becoming golden brown.
  • EAT!!!

Pistachio Matcha Protein Balls (Clean, healthy, Gluten-free, no bake)

A co-worker has been requesting that I bake with matcha for some time now, though I’ve been nervous to try it. Matcha is not cheap when it comes to tea and I was nervous that it wouldn’t taste sweet enough without any added or artificial sugars. However, I just went for it … (YOLO)… and these were a huge hit!

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For a first go at baking with matcha, I have to say I’m pretty impressed with the results. The green color of these is natural  from the matcha – they would have been the perfect St. Patrick’s Day treat. I guess there’s always next year!

balls1.jpgThese were super quick to make. I put them in the freezer to set, but you could have eaten them right away. This recipes makes about 12 balls depending on size.

Oh, the best part? These are low calorie and HIGH protein, so they make for a great post workout snack or a healthy after-lunch treat. I’m estimating these bad boys come in around 125 calories each.

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut
  • 1 1/2 scoops any plant based, vegan protein powder (I used Sun Warrior, a personal fav!)
  • 2 heaping tablespoons of Matcha (If you didn’t know, I’m obsessed with David’s Tea – this matcha is great, and they have a few “flavored” options too)
  • 2 heaping tablespoons of organic coconut flour
  • 2 tablespoons pure organic maple syrup (could sub Agave if you prefer)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 1-3 teaspoons of water
  • 1 cup of crushed shelled pistachios (to make sure these are clean, just use plain pistachios – not roasted or salted) balls1.jpg

How to: (Told you these were super easy)

  • In a food processor, blend together cashews, coconut, protein, matcha, and coconut flour until well combined and powdery.
  • Add in melted coconut oil and maple syrup. Blend for a few seconds until a heavy dough starts to form.
  • Scoop all of the mixture out and put in a seperate bowl or onto parchment paper so it’s easier to grab and roll the dough into balls.
  • At this point, if the dough isn’t sticking together, add a teaspoon of water at a time, mixing in between, until you’re able to roll these into balls. They should be dry enough, though, that they will stay together on their own and not melt all over the plate.
  • Put all crushed pistachios on a plate and roll the dough around on the plate, pushing the pistachios into the dough.
  • Set these in the freezer to set. This should only take 15 minutes or so.
  • Eat and enjoy!!

 

Salted Caramel Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Ok, so I know the point of this blog is to share clean recipes. However, I feel like it’s only fair to mix some cheats in here as well. As you know, I work for Pinterest so I’m constantly bombarded with images of amazing looking desserts in my newsfeed on a daily basis. Some of these are easy to clean up – others, not so much.

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Today’s Sunday Baking creation is one that simply wouldn’t be the same if I made it clean, so apologies in advance for another nonclean post.

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But. These are worth it. They really are. Plus, they bake really quickly so you don’t have to wait too long to indulge 🙂

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Ingredients:

  • 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, room temp
  • 4 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons of sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks – you can toss the whites
  • 1.5 teaspoons of vanilla
  • 1 cup flour (all purpose or almond)
  • 1 packet of instant coffee (optional, but I think it gives the cookies a bit of a kick)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 2/3 cups of big chocolate chunks
  • Either a handful of square caramel candies or 1/2 cup of melting caramels
  • Chunky sea salt

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper
  • Using an electric mixer, beat together butter and two sugars until creamy and smooth.
  • Beat in the egg yolks and vanilla.
  • Add in the flour, instant coffee and baking powder.
  • Once everything is combined, hand mix in the caramels and the chocolate chunks.
  • Using your hands, create balls of dough and press onto parchment paper. Don’t press too hard – you’ll want them to be chunky. They’ll spread a bit while they cook, but mostly will maintain their shape.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes.
  • As soon as you take them out of the oven, sprinkle generously with sea salt!

This recipe should make between 12-16 larger sized cookies. Now if only I could make these clean some how…. I promise I’ll keep trying. Until then, have a cheat cookie on me.

 

Chocolate Peppermint Frosted Cookies

Ok, eeeek. Don’t be mad. But I had to do another non-clean dessert.

These were just calling my name. Also, it seemed appropriate to use some candy canes now that we’re officially past Thanksgiving. Goodbye pumpkin…Hello candy canes! (Actually, let’s be real – I will use pumpkin all year long. I can’t not.)

Next recipe, I promise, will be clean! But look at those. Could you say no? peppermint4These were fun to make, especially becuase I made them as a thank you to my new sister-in-law and her adorable family for hosting us for lunch. I may have gone a little overboard with the frosting drizzle, but I dare you to make these and not go overboard with it. peppermint2Also, can we all acknowledge that my manicure matches these cookies perfectly? 🙂 peppermint3

Note: this recipe is adapted from Dinner at the Zoo’s amazing recipe for Peppermint Bark Cookies. So so good, I totally wish I could take credit for these!

Ingredients:

  • One 12 ounce bag of mini chocolate chips
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter or coconut oil
  • 2/3 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • One small dash of finely ground sea salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup of packed brown sugar
  • 1.5 teaspoons of vanilla
  • 8 ounces of white chocolate chips
  • 1.5 cups of crushed candy cane, any flavor!
  • 1/4 cup of white sprinkles of sugar pearls

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a medium sized bowl, add butter and 2/4 of the total bag of mini chocolate chips. Melt in the microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between.
  • In a seperate bowl, mix together flour, salt and baking soda.
  • In a third bowl, using a hand mixer to beat eggs, brown sugar and vanilla until it becomes lighter and fluffier.
  • Add the melted chocolate to the third bowl (with eggs and sugar) and mix together slowly.
  • Add in the remaining bag of mini chips.
  • Lastly, add in the flour mixture and mix until it’s well combined.
  • Drop about a tablespoon of mixture on to a pan lined with parchment paper or a prepared cookie sheet. Bake for roughly 12-14 cookies until they start to crack on top.
  • Allow the cookies to cool while you heat up white chocolate, following the same method as you did to melt the chocolate.
  • After the cookies cool, drizzle white chocolate over cookies and sprinkle crushed candy cane and sprinkles across the frosting.
  • Allow them to cook, then indulge!

I haven’t used peppermint much in other cookies or treats that I’ve made. Do you have any favorite cookies or treats that I should try next?

 

Easy Salted Cocoa Cookies (Clean!)

Hey guys! Happy Saturday  🙂

As some of you know, I work for Pinterest. This is amazing for multiple reasons – one of those reasons, of course, is that I get to be on Pinterest all the time. ALL. THE. TIME. I mean, they pay me to do it. If you’re not on Pinterest, stop reading now and sign up. Life changing, for reals.

At this point, my entire Pinterest feed is endless amazing looking desserts, sprinkled with a random rap quote and a cute puppy every now and then. (I love hip hop. And I’ll admit it – I search for cute puppies on Pinterest when I need a mental break at work). “Having” to be on Pinterest all the time now makes me want to bake all the time.  While my real jam is baking SUPER dirty desserts (think Oreos on top of cookie dough on top of brownies with ice cream & hot fudge, etc.), I have turned a new corner.

But, I  can’t give up the sweets. I just can’t. Why would I?

Enter Baking BadAsh. A blog dedicated to my pursuit of taking normally dirty treats and turning them clean. Recipe number one happens to be easy Salted Cocoa cookies. Yes, this chocolate-y goodness below is actually clean & made with healthy ingredients. Indulge now!

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Easy Salted Cocoa Cookies – Clean recipe! 

Cookie Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Coconut flour
  • 1/3 cup Agave or maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup solid coconut oil
  • Coarse Sea Salt, as needed

Filling ingredients:

  • 1/4 Coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

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How to:

  1. Preheat oven temp to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium to large bowl, mix almond flour and cocoa powder.
  3. In a seperate bowl, mix together egg, coconut oil, agave or maple syrup, and vanilla. Put in the fridge for a few minutes – it will make it easier to roll into balls if it’s a little chilled.
  4. Roll in to balls and then push them on to a parchment paper.
  5. Sprinkle sea salt over cookies then bake for 12 minutes.
  6. As cookies are baking, star mixing together ingredients for the cookie filling and whip together until  you get to a frosting-like consistency.
  7. When cookies are done, cool for 3-4 minutes then using a frosting tip, add enough to cookie to create the sandwiches. Eat!

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