Pumpkin cream bars

There’s a few foods that I realllly love, and one of them is pumpkin.  It’s one of those versatile foods that you can cook it various ways, each tasting different.  This recipe is a dessert, that is guilt-free, and could actually be served as a breakfast/brunch treat as well – being that it’s actually not THAT sweet (but totally hits the spot).

Image

Image

Image

ImageImage

Transformation

Transformation

Not all that long ago I wasn’t conscious of what I consumed, and I didn’t exercise on a regular basis. With that being said, I wasn’t as bad as I could’ve been, however I was no where near where I should’ve, needed, or even wanted to be. In 8 months I turned that around, and took control of my body. With eating a generally clean diet, and regular exercise, I’ve come a long way. Now, there’s no stopping me.

Look out world 🙂

Chocolate-Avocado Muffins

Image

 

I don’t know about you, but even though I eat clean, does NOT mean I don’t have a sweet tooth. And because of this, in order to refrain from having guilty pleasures ohh I don’t know..everyyyday: I find healthy alternatives to foods that usually would blow my diet completely out of whack.  (Also, can I just say that when I use the word ‘diet’ I mean it by the kinds of foods that I habitually eat – rather than a ‘restricted’ food list).  I’d apologize about stepping onto my soapbox buuut, I’m actually not sorry 😉

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 1/2 cup Wholewheat OR wholemeal flour
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup honey or maple syrup or agave nectar 
  • 3/4 cup almond/coconut/OR soy milk (your preference)
  • 1/2 cup cocoa or cacao (preferably dark)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 medium avocado, pitted
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 

OPTIONAL:

  • 1/2 cup (dark) chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup chopped nuts (almonds, walnuts, etc)

 

Image

 

INSTRUCTIONS:

  • Mix avocado, oil, vanilla together in food processor or blender until smooth.
  • Gradually add the rest of the dry ingredients, adding milk as you go so that it makes them easier to mix

Image

  • Put in muffin tins, or even do in a bread loaf if you prefer
  • Bake for 20 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean
  • Now.. ENJOY YOUR SCRUMPTIOUS AND HEALTHY MUFFINS 🙂

 

Image

 

Oh, and if you’re wondering if you can taste the avo; no, no you can’t. So enjoy those extra nutrients in your muffins without having to suffer through an avo (though, avocados are lovely anyway!)

Busy bee

My mom has always called me a busy bee, and I guess it really is true.  I tend to keep myself extremely busy with work, school, gym, cooking, errands, trying to have a bit of life.. You know how it is!

Print

Fortunately, this fall semester is coming to a close in just about a week now, so I’m going to have a little bit more free time on my hands.  Which means more time to make posts on here!  There are so many recipes that I’m eager to share.   There are also many topics that I want to discuss, such as the benefits of lots of foods, plants, herbs, etc.  I want to address some questions that I’ve had, that some of you may have, such as: what is an omega-3, fatty acid, Do I need them, and if so why, and where can I get it?  Vitamin A, B, C, D, E, K? Iron? Potassium? Is all saturated fat, bad fat?

I think one of the reasons I love health and nutrition so much is I’m constantly learning, and trying new things.  The biggest problem we have as a whole, is we simply don’t know what it is that our bodies need.  Hopefully that’s where I can come in 🙂

How to make aloe vera water, or juice!

About a week ago my boyfriend and I were watching a few documentaries on health, nutrition and wellness.  Holy Moly – they’re so eye opening!  Anyway, lots of foods and herbs were being named and one thing that stuck out to me was aloe vera.  Aloe vera? What?? How do you eat aloe vera? I thought it was only used in lotions and for sunburn?

Aloe vera is anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, and full of healing properties. 

Well, then we ended up at this very strange and weird “World Supermarket.”  When I say they had nearly everything, I mean it: from guava, avocados bigger than your fist, to dried shrimp and fresh beef tongue.  I’m trailing off again.. ANYWAY, they had aloe vera! Huge aloe vera leaves for only $.99.  Needless to say, we took that bad boy home with us.

Image

While in the store we also kept seeing “Aloe Vera Juice” and “Aloe Vera Water” – It was extremely tempting to get some, however after reviewing the nutrition labels and seeing that they loaded it up with a ton of garbage and sugar, I decided I could try to make our own. Anddd, It was unbelievably simple to do!

To cut the aloe vera – you want to remove the green rind, so slice longways.  You also want to be sure to not use the ‘yellow’ gel (closest to the rind), as it can cause stomach cramps and diarrhea (not so cute!).

Image

You’ll slice until you have just a slab of clear aloe vera.  Just a tip, keep a towel handy as you’re doing this because aloe vera is extremely slimy!

Image

If you’re like me and you bought a big leaf, then you’re going to have a lot of extra.  I stored the remainder of mine in a mason jar, in the fridge.  However, if you used a smaller leaf, perhaps from aloe vera you’ve grown yourself, you probably will only have about 2 tbsp, which is exactly the amount you need for this “juice”

Image

To make the juice/water:

2 tbsp aloe vera

8 ounce (1 cup) of juice or water.

Mix in blender, and drink immediately, or store in air tight container in the fridge.

____

I personally don’t drink juice, so I did water, then squeezed one slice of lime into it.   It didn’t have much of a taste, so the lime really made it.

You can consume this juice/water, whatever you want to call it up to twice daily.

Homemade pesto

 

 

 

 

Who knew that pesto was so easy to make? I surely didn’t! Not only did it take under 5 minutes to make, but it’s also only FOUR ingredients.

pesto1

Ingredients:

3/4 cup olive oil

3/4 cup dry pine nuts

1 bunch of basil

Juice from 1 lemon

pesto2

Now put all of those goodies into your food processor, and puree until you get this consistency:

pesto3

Voila! No need to buy store made pesto again!

I have to thank one of the lovely moms I work for, for sharing this recipe with me today. A real eye opener! If I’m capable (and it’s not super pricy) than I would much rather make it myself rather than purchase “store bought” any day!  When you do it yourself you KNOW what you’re putting into the recipe, therefor you KNOW what you’re putting into your body!

2 ingredient pancakes

Now, who doesn’t love pancakes? Only weirdos, right?  Well believe-it-or-not I was one of those weirdos not that long ago.  I’ve just never been that big of a fan of pancakes. Usually they’re just huge, too thick, and get soggy from all of the (very) sweet syrup..Gross! However, since my newfound lifestyle change, I’ve found myself craving them.  This is probably because I don’t eat sweet things often other than fruit.  So this put me in a bit of a predicament.. How can I satisfy my pancake craving without really indulging?

After a few minutes on google I came across this uh-mazzz-zing 2 ingredient pancake recipe.  Yes, you read that correctly: TWO ingredients; that’s all.  Those two ingredients you ask? Egg, and banana. That’s it!  Okay, okay, okay, I’ll stop ranting and give you the recipe already 😀

 Image

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 eggs
  • Optional: Chocolate chips, pecans, almonds, raisins, etc

Preparation: 

  • Mix the eggs and banana together.  (I prefer to use it blender/food processor – use whatever is easiest for you)
  • Add fillings if you fancy
  • Now just cook these bad boys like you’d cook any other pancakes
  • Top with fruit, nuts, syrup, nutbutter – ENJOY!

Tips:

  • I let the mixture set for a few minutes before cooking them otherwise you get extremely flat (yet still delicious) pancakes.
  • Look out for the little air bubbles on top of your pancakes – when there’s a bunch that means it’s time to flip those flap jacks!

I hope you enjoy these guys! They’re full of potassium, fiber, vitamin c,  and protein but you’ll feel like you’re indulging big time.  These pancakes are one of my absolute favorites now – I can’t get enough!