Month: November 2014

Breakfast Pumpkin Cookie: Can you have cookies for breakfast?

One of my favorite things about the holidays is that eating cookies for breakfast is not only accepted but encouraged! Cookies are one of my favorite things to make and eat, I particularly like the cookies that are high in fiber and protein because they are perfect candidates for “breakfast cookies” that you can eat any day and not just on holidays!

My kids are usually a bit shocked when instead of their oatmeal and bowl of fruit I present them with a plate of cookies and warm milk for breakfast.  Best part is that these Breakfast Pumpkin cookies are filled with oats, (#glutenfree) pumpkin and almond butter, so they are delicious and nutritious.

This recipe includes ¾ cup of pumpkin puree, since it is season for pumpkin and nutmeg. But you can actually make them with other fruit purees for some variation. I have tried it with bananas, dates and even a mix of zucchini and banana. Keep the measure at about ¾-1 cup and if you happen to be using a fruit puree that has more water than pumpkin, add some extra oats to compensate.

Here is the recipe and share with us in the comments belwo how do you feel about having cookies for breakfast?

Breakfast Pumpkin Cookie

1 cup oat flour20141117_201702646_iOS
1 ½ cup oats
¼ tsp baking soda
1 tsp pumpkin spice
¼ tsp salt
¾ cup 100% Pumpkin Puree
¼ cup Once Again Almond Butter
¼ cup Maple Syrup or Honey
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350F. You can purchase the oat flour, or just make your own by adding about 1 ½ cup of oats into the food processor until you achieve a coarse flour. Then add the baking soda, pumpkin spice and salt to the flour mix. Next add the pumpkin, Once Again Almond Butter, maple syrup, vanilla extract and mix well. Lastly add the oats and mix. Using a “cookie scoop” drop dollops onto a greased cookie sheet (or one lined with a silicone baking sheet) then flatten the cookies and take to oven for 15 minutes or until golden.

Makes about 24 cookies with a ½ tsp scoop.

… have a happy Thanksgiving,


PB and Banana Mini Muffins: Nutrition on the Go! How to make muffins with a blender.

PB and Banana Mini Muffins: Nutrition on the Go! How to make muffins with a blender.

I cherish my weekends now more than ever before. During the week it seems that my days never have enough hours and the obligations just pile up. Saturdays when no plans are made until after I wake up are usually the best ones! Time to enjoy a morning cup of coffee while listening to some jazz and taking in the cool breeze of the early hours.

Baking has become part of my weekend plans lately. I always enjoyed baking but who has time to do it during the week anymore? I spend some time browsing cookbooks, looking for inspiration from other bakers and find very relaxing to brainstorm about modifications to original recipes that will make it my own or add a twist that fits my style.  I gravitate towards recipes with a short list of ingredients as well as ones that can be frozen to eat throughout the week. Most of my adaptations are targeted to simplify while also adding or swapping for nutrient rich ingredients.

I have craved a high protein baked good I can eat right before a work out, or as a mid-morning snack to hold me over until lunch time. Since most baked goods have lots of carbs but not enough protein or fiber this has been a bit of a challenge. But with a few trials and twists this recipe is now one of my favorites to make and share with friends too. When people first glance at the ingredients list they usually ask: is this really going to be a baked good? The lack of flour makes you think this may not turn out to be a soft and moist type of muffin. But that is exactly the words I would use to describe this PB & Banana Mini Muffins. They are moist, soft, nutty and sweet in just the perfect amount.

Did I mention you use the blender instead of mixer for this one? It is a time saver for sure since you just add all ingredients at once and blend, then you can pour directly into the mini-muffin pan. I also added some chocolate chips to this batch, you could also try it with coconut, raisins, cranberries or just about anything you’d like!

I plugged in the ingredients list on a nutrient label program and the estimated protein per mini-muffin is of 4 grams each! They also have 1.5g of fiber and about 70 calories each. Check out the video below!

PB & Banana Mini-Muffins20141027_143832000_iOS

1 cup Once Again Creamy Peanut Butter
2 bananas
2 eggs
2 tbsp Honey (optional)
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
½ tsp ginger powder (optional)
½ cup dark chocolate chips (optional)

Bake at 350F for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm or they freeze well too!

 … take your nutrition on the go!


Quick Pumpkin Bread made with Once Again Peanut Butter

Right along with my peanut butter obsession goes my new found love for pumpkin puree. How did I not discover the versatility of this vegetable before? (check out our previous post where I exposed the truth: pumpkin is indeed a vegetable). Pumpkin adds so much moisture and flavor to recipes, and for baking it lessens the need for added oil and sugar. It is perfect for cupcakes, muffins and as I just discovered for quick bread recipes too!

This recipe is a twist on my traditional banana bread recipe. You can double up the measurements for 2 loafs, or just make it as is for a single loaf. I usually like to make “smaller” quantities recipe first to test it out. After all, when you are using top quality ingredients you don’t want to waste anything in case the recipe doesn’t turn out the way you hoped. Most recipes adapt well to this trick and will save you money and time as you try them out.

This Pumpkin Bread recipe was tested in both the half and full quantities, so you know it will work! Also as an added bonus it freezes well! I have a couple in my freezer right now, you never know when you’ll need a homemade gift or have a last minute visit from a friend! My mother raised me to always greet your guests at the door and serve coffee or tea as well as a baked good no matter what time of the day it is. And I happen to love carrying on that tradition!  Although this is technically a “quick bread” recipe it tastes more like a cake to me, but I’ll let you try it and let me know what you think.

Quick Pumpkin Bread20141102_184644786_iOS

½ cup Once Again Crunchy Peanut Butter
½ cup raw sugar
1 egg
1 banana
½ tsp pumpkin Spice
¾ cup pumpkin puree
¾ cup flour
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt

Mix Once Again Peanut Butter with sugar, then add egg, pumpkin puree, mashed banana and mix together well. Add the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, salt and pumpkin spice) and mix until smooth batter. It will be a thicker batter, place in loaf pan sprayed with butter or coconut oil. Place in pre-heated oven at 375F for 45-50 minutes or until done. Note: I used half of the flour as wheat and half as regular. You can also use creamy Once Again Peanut butter instead of crunchy.

For freezing: wrap in parchment paper and foil before freezing to preserve moisture. This recipe will make one loaf, you may double it for 2. The banana was added for a sweeter bread, but you may leave it out and just increase the pumpkin puree by ¼ cup.

…have a wonderful weekend!