Toddler Hulk Muffins

Have I mentioned that my little is Batman? Well he is…but sometimes he likes to be other superheroes too, like Captain America or the Hulk and now he is totally into Ninja Turtles as well. Anyways, since my life seems to revolve around superheroes, it was only fitting to call these [super] yummy green and purple muffins, Hulk Muffins!

I know, I know, he is no longer a “toddler” but toddlers are sure to love these muffins, just like my…preschooler. I am having a hard time letting go of my little baby who just wanted to be held all day, isn’t three too early to be a big kid? He is such a strong and independent boy who is so full of life and is so adamant about learning new things, and doing everything by himself. He also doesn’t want to be called any of those mushy nicknames, like my baby or boo bear…the list goes on…sometimes I slip up and call him a mushy name, and he reminds me, “Mom, I am not a baby, I am a big kid.”

On to the muffins…

I haven’t made a “toddler” muffin in quite some time, but I really wanted to make something that didn’t have flour and contained fruits and veggies that could easily be tossed into a lunch-pail. I had just bought a big container of spinach and blueberries from Costco, which I immediately washed and froze in individual baggies for smoothies (more on that another day)…but I thought hey, those would be perfeeecccttt for a muffin!

Toddler Hulk Muffins

Makes approx. 30 mini muffins

2 cups rolled oats (not all oats are gluten-free, check the labeling)

2 bananas

2 eggs

1 heaping handful of spinach

1-1 1/2 cup blueberries

1 cup dairy free yogurt (I used coconut yogurt)

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 tsp baking soda

Pre-heat oven to 400.

Blend or food process the oats, yogurt, spinach, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and vanilla until smooth, although there will be some texture from the oats. Add in eggs. Once combined fold in the blueberries.

Grease or line muffin tin. Fill compartments 3/4 full. Stick them in the oven and bake for 8-10 minutes.

P.S. These aren’t just for toddlers, I loved them too!

P.P.S. Go check out my Instagram over there —-> on the right side of the screen. Follow me and stay updated on the daily (or close to it), or if you don’t have an Instagram you can still go check out the pictures!

Happy Baking 🙂

Chocolate, coconut and peanut butter! Does it get any better?

Wild Friends is a new[er] brand of nut butters on the market, and they have great flavors including Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter, which was my muse for these two recipes.

I have been trying to find a protein bar on the market that is not only is dairy-free but inexpensive, and it has become a trying task. So I decided to make my own. These bars are not only simple to make, but it makes a large batch and only used a fraction of the ingredients that I purchased.

Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter Protein Bars

Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter Protein Bars

Approx. 20 small bars

2 cups oats

1 cup puffed brown rice cereal

3/4 cup Wild Friends Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter

1/3 cup shredded coconut

1/2 cup brown rice syrup (I used Lundberg’s Organic Sweet Dreams)

2/3 cup brown rice protein powder (I used Growing Naturals Brand in Chocolate)

1 tsp vanilla

I combined the peanut butter and brown rice syrup and heated it in the microwave for a few seconds until it was slightly melted and easier to stir, you could also heat it on your stove top over low heat-this step made the process of mixing much easier. Add the additional ingredients and keep stirring until the mixture is uniformly combined.

I took my 16 cup (12.375″ L X 9.125″ W X 3.5″ H) Sterilite rectangle lidded container and lined it with parchment paper. I added the mixture and pressed it firmly and evenly. I snapped on the lid and stuck it in the refrigerator for about an hour or two (I lost track of time); once they were cooled, I removed the bars easily with the parchment paper and cut them into 20 small rectangular bars. Then I tossed them back into the container for storage. I recommend storing them in the refrigerator, however I did have one in my purse that I forgot about…it was in a Ziploc baggy for a day or so and it still maintained the shape and flavor.

I wanted to touch on brown rice syrup briefly. I have heard controversy over this item due to reports of arsenic in rice. For one, it is an ingredient in almost every organic, natural, vegan etc bar, and two I felt comfortable using this Lundberg brand because they are taking precautions and testing the levels of arsenic in their rice as part of their comprehensive food safety plan.

And now for this masterpiece…

Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter Pancakes

Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter Pancakes

Approx. 4-6 depending on size

2 eggs

1 ripe banana

1/2 cup Wild Friends Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter

2 tbsp chocolate chips (I used Enjoy Life minis)

2 tbsp shredded coconut

Optional:

Coconut oil for cooking

A little extra coconut and chocolate chips to sprinkle on top (highly recommended)

Mash the banana, then add the eggs and mix well; add the remaining ingredients and mix until relatively smooth. I heated a pan on my stove top to medium-low and added a little coconut oil to keep the pancakes from sticking.  I put about 1-2 tablespoons of the mixture into the pan; when they have formed bubbles on top that have burst they are ready to be flipped (just like normal pancakes). These don’t take long to cook!

When they are done, grab a plate and stack ’em up. I didn’t add any syrup or additional peanut butter, just a sprinkle of coconut and chocolate chips on top. I’m not even exaggerating, these were like heaven in my mouth. Next time around, I will be making a bigger batch!

Enjoy 🙂

P.S. This post was not sponsored by Wild Friends. All opinions and ideas are my own.

Greek Style Yogurt Parfait

I think one of the things that I miss most about eating a diet rich in dairy is yogurt. I love a yogurt that is thick and creamy, and I was slightly obsessed with the Fage Greek yogurt. I’ve tried several dairy-free yogurts, but I just was not able to find one that was palatable to my or my toddlers taste buds. I do realize that some of the products that we eat contain soy, and there is a vast difference in opinions about the consumption of soy, but I don’t feel comfortable replacing dairy for soy, in other-wards, I try not to buy soy yogurts, milks and cheeses.

With that said, I was so excited when I was looking online and game across the So Delicious Greek Style yogurt. I searched for retailers in my area that carry the product and there was only ONE single store in a 20 mile radius and that store just happened to be about 15 miles away. Needless to say, I went and bought a couple of containers (the only available flavor was blueberry).

It has the slight coconut flavor since it is made with coconut milk, but it offers the creaminess that I desired. Unlike dairy Greek yogurt, it does not contain much protein but it is lower in calories and has 8g of fiber, plus it has 6 active and live cultures so its beneficial to our guts! High five for gut health!

So Delicious Greek Style

 

Greek Style Yogurt Parfait

So Delicious Greek Style yogurt (or you could use any type of yogurt you like)

Homemade Granola

Fruit (I used banana)

Greek Style Yogurt Parfait

I hope you like it as much as I do!

I was not asked to promote this So Delicious Greek style yogurt and I was not paid or given any incentive. All opinions are mine.

Bananas, Nut Butters and Cinnamon.

Nut Butters and bananas have a bad rap among some, but they actually have great health benefits. They also make a perfect combination of yummy-ness that is amplified by cinnamon.

  1. Bananas are believed by some to be high in carbs, sugar and calories; however they really don’t have more of these things than other fruits. Bananas are actually low on the glycemic-index, which means they are great for diabetics because they don’t cause a spike in blood sugar levels. Plus, they are an excellent source of potassium.
  2. Nut butters are not only high in protein and low in carbohydrates, but they also provide heart healthy fats. I know that choosy moms choose Jif, but their regular peanut butter has quite a bit of sugar and other unnecessary ingredients. There are a lot of different brands of peanut butter out there, so just be label conscious and find something that is best for you. Peanut butter isn’t the end-all be-all of nut butter though; almond butter is a great alternative. I also like Sunbutter, which isn’t technically a nut butter since it is made from sunflower seeds, but it still offers great benefits and it tastes wonderful.
  3. Cinnamon just makes everything taste better, well not everything, but a lot of things. It isn’t just a spice to use on cinnamon rolls, I sneak it into other dishes…I hate to give up my secret ingredient… but it adds a great flavor and depth to tomato based dishes. There are a surprising amount of benefits from using cinnamon. To name a few: regulates blood sugar, lowers LDL cholesterol, and it is anti-microbial/viral.

I’m going to share five easy-peasy recipes with you that are good for breakfasts, lunches and snacks…or dinner if you choose!

  • Quesadilla: Take tortillas and spread with peanut butter, sliced banana and sprinkle on some cinnamon. Then cook on a skillet with a dairy-free butter, coconut oil, or nothing.
  • Sandwich, cold or grilled: Take some bread and smear on some peanut butter, add sliced bananas and cinnamon and you are good to go. You could also grill it up like you would a grilled cheese.
  • Oatmeal: Cook oats, add in a tablespoon of nut butter (you can do more or less depending on your taste), slice up some bananas to put on top and sprinkle with cinnamon.
  • Smoothie: Blend together a frozen banana, a tablespoon of nut butter (or whatever amount you want), add in a cup (and again you can play with the amount of milk to get your desired consistency) of dairy free milk (almond, coconut, hemp, rice), and a teaspoon or so of cinnamon and blend together.
  • Banana bites: mix together a nut butter and cinnamon mixture and cut up a banana into half-inch slices. Spread the mixture onto one side of a banana slice and top that with another banana slice. You can eat them as is or stick them in the freezer for a nice cold treat that are easy to grab on the go.

quesadilla

quesadilla1

oatmeal

Do you have any ideas and/or recipes that have banana, nut butters and cinnamon? If so, please share 🙂