Almond Butter Coconut Bars (Clean & flourless!)

Finally able to post a new recipe! I have been trying a few original recipes over the last couple of weeks and have bombed big time. Yikes. Throwing away such high quality organic ingredients makes me sad, but I don’t want to post anything here that I wouldn’t recommend making on your own.

Also, I know this blog is food related but I have to share two exciting updates on my end.

  1. Today is my FIRST anniversary with my husband! I’m officially an old married lady and couldn’t be prouder!
  2. Today is also my first day of starting a one year program to become a certified health coach. I’ll be looking for clients in about 6 months so stay tuned!

Ok, now on to the food.

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As you all know, I work for Pinterest, which means I am on Pinterest a LOT. I see an ad for Thrive Market frequently that advertises getting one free product and have always been a little skeptical (although, side note – our ads are highly monitored by a policy team, so I’m not sure why I was so hesitant to believe it. Just assumed it was too good to be true!) A coworker of mine came over my desk and said “Get this free Justin’s almond butter and make us something please!” So, I did. And it actually was free! Do it!

These bars have pumpkin and almond butter as the base and require no flour – healthy win!

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Justin’s Almond Butter – I used the plain kind but any of the flavors would be great and give some good variety!
  • 1/2 cup organic pumpkin (actual pumpkin, not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1 large egg or one flax egg
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla (or less, but I personally prefer more)
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes + 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes for topping
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
    • Nuts, walnuts, pistachios – any other nuts or dried fruit that you want! I only used chocolate but you could get creative here!

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees, prepare an 8×8 pan (I’m currently liking this) and set aside
  • In a Vitamix or blender, pulse together almond butter, pumpkin, egg and vanilla
  • Add in baking soda & spice and pulse again for a few seconds
  • Once combined, hand mix in coconut flakes and chocolate chips – don’t overmix, but just allow the batter to cover the flakes
  • Pour batter into pan – sprinkle the rest of the flakes on top
  • Bake for 35 – 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean and coconut flakes are golden brown
  • Let cool or dive right in!

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Dark Chocolate Avocado Cookies (Keto + Clean eating)

Let’s keep on the train of sneaking in healthy ingredients into treats…

I currently (and always) have an obsession with avocado. It’s by far my favorite healthy addition to almost any meal. Lately, I just don’t feel like a meal is complete without a chunk of avocado of a scoop of guac. Remember when I went through my banana phase? Well, it turns out that avocados have way more potassium and fiber than bananas and way less sugar and carbs – two things I’ve been trying to limit. Bye banana, hi avo.

These barely made it to the blog because my husband couldn’t keep his hands off them. Turns out, I’ve actually run out of places to hide my baked goods so we’ve implemented this rule: JUST MAKE SURE YOU SAVE ME ONE!

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I know I say this a lot because I love sweet treats so much, but these really are gorgeous and full of fiber and healthy fat. (By the way, fat is a GOOD thing. Let’s talk more about this because its honestly something that was hard for me to truly believe. More to come here.)

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Sadly, I totally forgot to take photos of these while I was making them so I only have the final version. There is nothing crazy that goes into these, though, so I think you’ll be able to figure it out by reading directions. 🙂

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Ingredients:

  • 2 medium super ripe avocados (they should be borderline smooshy so they’re easier to mix)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup of sweetener of choice (Stevia or coconut sugar are recommended)
  • 1 cup of almond flour meal
  • 2 tablespoons of melted coconut oil
  • 3 tablespoons of dark cocoa mix
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Dash of himalayan sea salt
  • Sugar free dark chocolate chips
  • Any other additions you want to include – pistachios, walnuts, pecans!

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How to:

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees and prepare a cookie sheet (I used parchment paper on a cookie sheet to prevent sticking)
  • Add all ingredients to Vitamix and blend!
    • If it looks too dry and not like a thick batter, add a dash of almond milk and blend for a few more seconds.
  • Hand mix in any other ingredients you desire
  • Scoop onto the cookie sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes

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Let me know what you think – and save ONE for moi!

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!!!

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.

 

Edible Oatmeal Cookie Dough Dip (Clean minus your chosen toppings, Vegan)

I have always been a cookie dough fan. Usually, whenever I bake I’m more excited about the dough than the final products. And we already know that I’m a big fan of oatmeal, so when I can eat RAW oatmeal cookie dough, I’m in heaven.

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This is a super easy dip to make and you can really customize it however you want. I chose to add chocolate chips & oatmeal to replicate my favorite type of cookie, but you could easily add sprinkles to make this taste more like sugar cookies, raisins, nuts, the possibilities are endless!

The base of the cookie is completely clean and secretly healthy – great for us bouncing back from Christmas binging. The chocolate chips are obviously the exception here, so make sure you leave those out if you are strictly a clean eater. Also, you probably already have all of these ingredients in your pantry so you can make this TODAY. You will NOT regret it. Now, how am I supposed to distract myself from knowing this sitting in the fridge waiting for me to finish it off!? Ah!

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Ingredients:

  • 1 can of chickpeas (Make sure you wash & strain well!)
  • 2 tablespoons of vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 cup of nut butter – I used almond, but you could really use any kind of nut butter
  • 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 cup of pitted dates
  • Almond milk – only if consistency is thick
  • Any mixings of your choice – I used oatmeal & dark chocolate chips

How to:

  • Throw everything (except for milk and toppings) into the blender or food processor and mix together!
  • Once it reaches a cookie dough consistency, move everything to a bowl and hand mix in any of the toppings you want to add.
  • Eat with a spoon, smooth onto apple slices or crackers, or mix into oatmeal. You really can eat this however you’d like!
  • This can be stored in the fridge for a few days, if you’re able to make it last that long!

cookiedough3.jpgWhat are your favorite toppings? I’d love any suggestions or ideas for how to use this delish dip!