Gooey Chocolate Coconut Banana Bread

This bread is fantastic for when you want something sweet while still keeping healthy!  It's great for a chocolaty snack too!

Ingredients:

1 2/3 cup overripe mashed banana  
2 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp coconut extract (omit if desired)
1 tbsp white or apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup canned coconut milk (not coconut milk beverage)
3 1/2 tbsp coconut butter OR 2 tbsp milk of choice
2/3 cup pure maple syrup or honey or agave
1/8 tsp uncut stevia OR 1/4 cup sugar
1 3/4 cup spelt, white, or Bob’s GF Flour, loosely packed  
1/2 cup shredded coconut, optional
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp cocoa powder
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips in the batter, plus regular chips for decoration, optional

Read the entire recipe and directions at Chocolate Covered Katie.

Easiest Watermelon Smoothie

This smoothie is perfect for summer- for adults and kids alike! We have been drinking this ALL THE TIME- my daughter is a huge fan. The nice thing is that it's so easy to make- every time you cut a fresh watermelon, put a few ziplock bags of watermelon chunks in the freezer and you'll be good to go!

Ingredients:

2 cups frozen cubed watermelon
1 cup water
2 tablespoon of raw honey

optional: stevia to taste (it's definitely tastier for kids with a bit of added stevia)
optional: a few leaves or fresh mint, or any herb in your garden 

 

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.  

Add stevia to taste if desired (stevia is an all natural sugar-free sweetener that has become my new secret weapon in convincing my daughter to drink "healthy smoothies"). It changes this recipe from being moderately tasty to something that tastes like it came from Starbucks.

Add a straw and enjoy, preferably sitting outside in the sun!

 

Avocado and Three Bean Salad

This is a wonderful salad to bring to backyard get-togethers this summer! It's quick to put together and is bursting with flavor, plus it's high in plant protein and fiber!

Ingredients:

1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz) can whole kernel corn, drained (or substitute fresh)
1 large orange or red bell pepper, diced
12 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
2 large avocados, peeled, pitted and diced
juice of 2 limes
1/2 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
2 cloves garlic, mashed or finely diced

See the entire recipe and directions at Noble Pig.

Hemp Seed Energy Bites

These are the perfect size for a snack on the go or to tuck into lunchboxes, plus these little bites are low in sugar and high in omega-3's!

Ingredients:

1 cup gluten-free oat flour*
½ cup nut butter
⅛ cup hemp hearts, divided
¼ cup maple syrup
⅛ cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla extract
dash of sea salt

*Oat flour can be easily made by grinding oats in a blender or food processor

See the entire recipe and directions at Skinnyfitalicious.

Dairy Free Alfredo Pasta Sauce

This is a great dairy free sauce that's much healthier (and significantly lower in calories) than the original.  I won't say that it's exactly the same as its the original, but it's a nice, healthy alternative!

The original recipe was made for two servings, but I scaled it up to use a whole cauliflower and an entire package of pasta.

INGREDIENTS:

3 clove of garlic
1bs extra virgin olive oil
3 cup cauliflower (100 grams
2 1/4 cup almond milk (175 milliliters)
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1.5 tablespoon lemon juice
12 ounces uncooked pasta (gluten-free if necessary)

See the entire recipe and directions at Simple Vegan Blog.

Orange Wheatgrass Snoothie

Wheatgrass is an incredibly nutrient dense superfood, while still being mild tasting and slightly sweet. This recipe uses simple, easily available ingredients to make a tasty smoothie that's a great way to start the day!

1/4 cup water or coconut water
1/2 cup non dairy milk
1/4 cup fresh wheatgrass OR 1/4 teaspoon wheatgrass powder
1 orange or 2 tangerines
1/2 banana, frozen
1/2 cup ice

See the full recipe and directions at Blender Babes.

Seeded Whole Grain Quick Bread

This recipe makes a delicious, hearty breakfast or snack that compliments both sweet and savory flavors.

⅓ cup unsalted sunflower seeds
⅓ cup unsalted pumpkin seeds
3 tablespoons flaxseed
3 tablespoons sesame seeds
2 cups white whole-wheat flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
3 large eggs
1½ cups buttermilk
1 cup rolled oats
½ cup avocado oil or extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons honey or pure maple syrup
 

See the entire recipe and directions at Eating Well

Collard Greens Wrap – Great for Reducing Carbs

This is less of a recipe than a helpful tip to pass on. My husband has been trying to reduce his carb intake, and our one downfall is tortillas. Well, we’ve discovered that collard greens make a fantastic substitute for tortillas (or sandwich bread) for anyone trying to reduce their carb intake (they’re also nice for gluten free diets). They’re tasty and sturdy to hold any fillings, and they’re absolutely chock full of nutrients.

Honest Fare has a great tutorial on how to prepare collard greens for using in wraps on their website (along with a nice recipe), here. Another nice thing about using collard greens is that they last a long time in the fridge, even when made in advance with fillings for lunches.
 

Lemon Turmeric Quinoa

Turmeric is a fantastic anti-inflammatory spice, and this recipe is an easy (and delicious) way to add a bit more to your diet; plus this recipe only uses 5 ingredients, so it's simple to put together!

3 cups cooked quinoa (from 1 cup uncooked)
1 teaspoon coconut oil
Juice and zest of 1/2 a lemon (about 1 tablespoon juice, 1 teaspoon zest)
1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric powder
1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon salt

optional add-ins: chopped green onions, Thai basil, ground black pepper, cashews, etc.

Read the entire recipe and directions at Simply Quinoa.

Tuscan Toasted Red Quinoa Pilaf

If you've never had red quinoa, this recipe is a perfect way to serve it.  Red quinoa has more fiber than regular white quinoa, and while both varieties are great for you, if you haven't tried the red variety, it's a real treat!

Quinoa is a wonderful, high protein ancient grain that is also gluten free.  The Ancient Grains brand we carry is washed and pre-rinsed so it's ready to cook.  Quinoa should always be rinsed before preparing, but since the grains are tiny it can be a real challenge with most colanders, so the kind we carry at the store saves you a step!

2 cups red quinoa
4 cups lower-salt chicken or vegetable broth
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
1 Tbs. minced garlic
1 medium lemon, finely grated to yield 1 tsp. zest and squeezed to yield 2 Tbs. juice
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup chopped oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

Read the entire recipe and directions at Fine Cooking.

 

Apple Cider Vinegar Detox Drink

Raw apple cider vinegar is so healthy for you- it has benefits for weight loss, detoxification, it’s antibacterial, it can help with lowering blood sugar and cholesterol levels, and may even have protective effects against cancer. It’s been used for thousands of years for its many health benefits- it was even frequently prescribed by Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, in 400 BC for a variety of health issues!

Apple cider vinegar can be an acquired taste for some. First, I’d say, don’t try to drink it straight- it’s too strong!  Dilute it with water to make it easier to drink. This recipe is a great one to make apple cider more palatable, and its ingredients even add to ACV’s effectiveness.
This recipe makes a lot for convenience’ sake and can be kept in the fridge and sipped a few times throughout the day.

 


Ingredients:

• 2 glasses of water (15-30 oz.)
• 4 Tbsp. Bragg – Apple Cider Vinegar (with the mother, the chunks of stuff floating in the jar)
• 4 Tbsp. lemon juice
• 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
• 1 pinch cayenne pepper (optional)
• 4 Tbsp. honey (raw honey if possible)


See the entire recipe and directions at Bembu.com

Springtime Crockpot Minestrone

Yes, I know spring is a far way off. Still, I cannot wait to see those buds popping out of the ground! The weather might not seem very springy, but this beautiful soup recipe has a freshness that just sings "spring"!

Ingredients:

1 sweet onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 (28 ounce) can of diced tomatoes
2 (15 ounce) cans of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
3 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
3 cups water
8 ounces of uncooked ditalini pasta
12 thin asparagus spears, stems removed and cut into thirds
1 cup of frozen sweet peas
1 (6 ounce) bag of fresh spinach
1/3 cup freshly grated romano cheese + more for topping
salt and pepper to taste

See the entire recipe and directions at How Sweet It Is.

Low Carb Zucchini Lasagna (dairy free)

Zucchini is such a versatile ingredient, and it makes a fantastic substitute for lasagna noodles in this recipe for a delicious, grain free meal!

Ingredients:

3 medium zucchini
2 1/2 cups tomato pasta sauce
14 oz firm tofu
1 tsp salt, plus extra for the zucchini
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/3 cup nutritional yeast or parmesan, optional
1 cup shredded mozzarella (Daiya vegan shreds are a fantastic dairy free option)

To make this recipe even easier, you can substitute Tofutti's "Better Than Ricotta" that we have available in our store's refrigerated section.  

See the entire recipe and directions at Chocolate Covered Katie.

 

Hearty Flax Seed Pancakes

Flax seeds are full of good fiber and omega-3 fatty acids!  These make a delicious, hearty breakfast that satisfies for hours.

1/4 cup ground golden flax seed meal
1 large egg
1 Tablespoon nut milk or use water
1 teaspoon lemon juice or 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
tiny pinch sea salt

optional: dash of cinnamon & nutmeg
optional: a little sweetener of your choice
add to skillet/pan: a little organic vegetable shortening or any cooking fat/oil

See the entire recipe and directions at Forest and Fauna.

Anti-Inflammatory Golden Milk Recipe

If you haven’t heard of golden milk, also sometimes known as golden turmeric tea, you’re in for a treat!  Turmeric and ginger are wonderful, comforting, anti-inflammatory spices, and this recipe is an easy way to add more anti-inflammatory compounds to your diet.

We’ve posted our favorite recipe below, though there is also an easy, blender version below that. Try them both and see which is your favorite!

•    1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk, preferably coconut milk beverage or almond milk
•    1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
•    1 (1-inch) piece turmeric, unpeeled, thinly sliced, or 1/2 teaspoon dried turmeric
•    1 (1/2-inch) piece ginger, unpeeled, thinly sliced
•    1 tablespoon honey
•    1 tablespoon virgin coconut oil
•    1/4 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
•    Ground cinnamon (for serving)

See the entire recipe and directions at Epicurious.

 

Here is another recipe for golden milk that we like since it’s so simple (everything is mixed together in a blender and then heated on the stovetop).
 

Also, if you would like to try golden milk without the hassle of a recipe, we do carry prepared golden milk powder by Jarrow called Golden Tea at the store which is dairy free and can be served mixed with hot water or the milk of your choice.

15 Minute Miso Soup with Greens

Miso is fermented soybean paste. It's full of beneficial probiotics and is helpful for digestion and for bringing the body back into balance. We recommend using organic, non-GMO miso paste, like the one we have in our refrigerated section.

 

Ingredients

  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2 cup chopped green chard or other sturdy green
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onion
  • 1/4 cup firm tofu, cubed
  • 3-4 Tbsp white miso paste (fermented soy bean paste)
  • 1 sheet (1/4 cup) nori (dried seaweed), cut into large rectangles , optional

See the entire recipe and directions at the Minimalist Baker.

This is another helpful article: 7 Delicious Ways to Use Miso Paste

 

Almond Crusted Baked Zucchini Chips

These are beyond delicious and are an incredibly healthy, guilt-free snack or side dish. 

 

Ingredients
Serves 4 as a snack

1 large zucchini, sliced into rings
1 cup / 4 oz. almond flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
1 egg
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt (I like Celtic Sea Salt)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon thyme
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

See the entire recipe and directions at The Iron You.

Detox Cabbage Soup

This recipe is a fantastic, light soup that is great for detoxing after the indulgences of the holidays.  It's also low in calories so it's helpful if you're trying to lose a few extra pounds.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 head of cabbage, chopped into approx 1″ pieces
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup carrots, sliced
  • 1 cup green beans, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cups of baby spinach, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 1 small can tomato paste 
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes (or 3.3 cups)
  • 4 cups of chicken broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Read the entire recipe and directions at Sober Julie.

Triple Seed Superfood Granola

This recipe combines hemp, flax, and chia seeds for an amazing granola full of beneficial nutrients! It’s also fantastic when combined with our homemade yogurt recipe to make your own parfaits!


Dry Ingredients:

•    3 cups crisp brown rice cereal (gluten-free)
•    3 cups gluten-free rolled oats
•    ½ cup shelled hemp seeds
•    ½ cup brown flax seeds
•    ¼ cup chia seeds

Wet Ingredients:

•    ½ cup brown rice syrup (or honey)
•    2 tablespoons flax oil (or other oil)
•    1 tablespoon molasses
•    ½ tablespoon vanilla extract

See the entire recipe and directions at Keepin’ It Kind.
 

Homemade Yogurt in a Crock Pot (Don't Be Afraid- You Can Do This!)

A friend of mine turned me on to this awesome recipe and I had to share it. Most people think making yogurt is too difficult to be attempted, or that you need a special machine to do it (I actually had a yogurt maker once upon a time, but it was literally twenty different parts to clean and keep track of- nobody has time for that).

This recipe uses a crock pot and makes a huge amount of yogurt (or Greek yogurt) for only the cost of a gallon of milk. I also love this recipe because you know everything that is going into it- no carrageenan, no artificial chemicals or preservatives, just milk- I’d recommend using organic.

The recipe below makes a gallon of yogurt, which will stay good for several weeks. Both my friend and her mom always have this in their fridge and have never had it go bad. I was worried at first since it seemed like a gallon of yogurt was such a large amount, but she says it’s actually a wonderful thing since it can be eaten with abandon for breakfast or even as an addition to recipes.

When she first told me about how she’s been doing this, I said it seemed like a lot of steps, but she said not to be scared off by that, that it’s mostly time that the yogurt just needs to sit unattended, and that the actual work is very little (and is worth it when you think how a tiny container of Greek yogurt costs $1 or more).

The things you’ll need:

1 gallon of milk (I’d recommend using organic whole milk)
½ cup of plain yogurt to use as your starter
Crock pot
A kitchen thermometer

Read the entire recipe and directions at The Tasty Cheapskate.
 

The only tip we have to add to the recipe is that after you cool the milk and before adding the starter yogurt would be to skim off the layer of film that forms on top of the milk. It’s not necessary, but my friend said it’s better to skim off the film than mix it in to keep the yogurt uniformly smooth.