Can you tell I’m on a healthy muffin kick? There’s no rhyme or reason but I’m glad it happened and not even ashamed about it. Eric’s been pretty happy about this lately too. 😉
Rewind to a few weeks ago when I took my first trip to IKEA and bought a cake/dessert stand. (Similar, here). I came home, unpacked the stand, and placed it on the island with admiration. I then turned to Eric and asked him what he wanted it filled with, (as I started brainstorming how cute all the tasty desserts would look displayed on it). He thought for about two seconds and said something with carrot cake. That was the birth of these beauties: tasty, simple, and guilt-free!
1.5 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1.5 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1.5 cups shredded carrots
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup pureed pineapple
1/2 cup whole milk
8 oz. cream cheese
1/3 cup powdered sugar (or amount desired upon taste)
What to do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line muffin pan (12 count) with muffin liners. Mix all dry ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl and set aside. Mix all wet ingredients (except milk) together in a large bowl and whisk until thoroughly combined. Slowly add milk and dry ingredients. Continue whisking. Scoop into liners and fill about three quarters full. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick and it comes out clean. Meanwhile, soften cream cheese in a microwavable bowl. Add powdered sugar. Mix with a spoon. When the muffins are done in the oven, let cool for at least twenty minutes. Apply desired amount of glaze. Enjoy!
Each year, as Easter was approaching, my Mom would ask if my sister and I wanted to help with the food at church after the sunrise service. My sister declined and preferred more sleep, and I excitedly said yes, wanting to be in on all the action. My Mom was in charge of setting up all of the food for a crowd full of people who came after a lovely sunrise service, recognizing the real reason for celebrating Easter in all of it’s goodness. They came with full hearts and empty stomaches, ready to eat some yummy breakfast foods while sipping hot coffee to take off the chill from the outdoors.
My Mom and I would drive to a local bakery, picking up dozens of muffins and donuts galore. When we got to church, we poured endless cups of chocolate milk, prepped the coffee, cut each muffins perfectly, and delicately arranged each donut in beautiful fashion. The breakfast after the sunrise service is a memory I think back on every Easter. After focusing on the real reason of Easter, I quickly think of going to a local bakery and picking up food for dozens of people.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m the first to indulge in something to cure my sweet tooth, but as this season rolls around, I wanted a tasty alternative to the norm. A memory that left my heart and stomach feeling happy. 🙂 These healthy muffins are filling and chocolatey, leaving nothing to be desired. They are without-a-doubt the best when paired with coffee and slowly eaten with the ones you love during the Easter season.
3 cups super-fine almond flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp whole ground flax seed meal
1/4 cup unsweetened dark chocolate cocoa powder
2 ripe bananas, mashed
3 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup almond butter
4 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1/2 cup dark chocolate chip morsels
What to do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all dry ingredients (except the chocolate morsels) together in a medium-sized bowl. Set aside. Combine bananas, eggs, almond butter, and maple syrup together. Whisk. Fold in dry ingredients with wet ingredients and slowly add morsels. Whisk until thoroughly mixed. Place muffin liners in a muffin tin and fill each liner about three quarters full. Bake for about 30 mins or until you stick a toothpick in and it comes out clean. Pour some coffee and enjoy!
On days when I’m craving something warm and toasty, rather than cool and refreshing (like this), and the wind is howling creating a “real feel” in the teen temps, a Chocolate Chai Tea latte is in order. Adding a dash on cocoa powder to the original chai latte produces an entirely different cup of cozy all together. It’s sweet and balanced all in one. Plus, you can add a shot of espresso for an extra boost of energy, which is preferred these days. Although it changes the flavor a little, it’s delicious nonetheless. Both are preferred to be sipped under a pile of blankets or by a crackling fire with your favorite movie playing in the background–optional of course, but recommended. 😉
1/2 cup water
1 cup whole milk
2 bags chai tea
2 tsp dark chocolate cocoa powder
shot of espresso (optional)
whipped cream for topping (optional)
What to do:
Boil water in a teapot. Steep both tea bags in water. In a small saucepan, combine milk and cocoa powder and stir on medium high heat. Once it is thoroughly mixed, remove tea bags from water and pour milk and cocoa mixture into mug. Add shot of espresso if desired and stir. Whipped topping if desired. 🙂
After such warm temperatures the other week, my mind has officially sailed to summer. The sun shining, birds chirping, and the waves crashing are on repeat in my mind. But when snow is still in the forecast and appears after such beauteous days, I need a little pick-me-up. To start and bright your day, a little splash of OJ to this standard drink, awakes your senses and those sleepy eyes in the morning when catching some extra Zzz’s sounds so appealing. But really, it puts a little extra hop in your step, and hope for the summertime sensations that are ahead!
3/4 cup Organic Orange Juice
1/4 cup organic coconut milk
1 frozen banana
1 cup fresh strawberries (greens left on)
What to do:
Blend everything into a Vitamix and blend until smooth.
A better wife. A better daughter. A better sister. A better friend. A better version of myself. It’s a constant balancing act of trying to be better. Although at times it can feel like a daunting task, the desire to be better is what keeps me moving forward. I’m constantly drawing strength from something higher than myself in every situation because Lord knows we could all use a little extra dose of strength and patience along the way in life.
In the midst of balancing so many hats, I truly believe the start to bettering myself comes from the inside out. You are what you eat friends. (And also the products you use). With all the crazy marketing out there how do you really know what IS better? I’ve teamed up with a few companies who are B-Corp certified and have the same mission I do on a daily basis so I can be rest assured that what I am using and eating is good for me.
B Corps are for profit companies certified by the nonprofit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. B Corps are better companies – better for workers, better for communities and better for the environment. Taking simple steps on a daily basis to better yourself and loved ones has never been easier. You can check out all the B-Certified companies below in the links I provided and a yummy Blueberry Crumble using some of my favorite B-Certified products!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour blueberries into a loaf pan and set aside. In a medium-sized bowl combine flour, oats, maple syrup, EVOO, and salt. Stir until completely mixed. Pour and spread on top of the blueberries in pan. Bake for about 45 minutes or until the top is brown and/or fruit is bubbling. Remove from oven and top with granola and a large scoop of Stonyfield’s Organic 100% Grassfed Blueberry Greek Yogurt.