by Alyssa Bauman, Nourished.ca
What’s happening Sweet Tooth? What up Cravings?
So you’ve done it all to try and stay healthy this year.
Super well rested? Check.
Drank the green juice, and even convinced the kids to gulp down a couple of sips? Check.
Loaded up on veggies, and cut up extra ones for the kids’ snacks? Check.
Drank litres of water? Check.
You’re making healthier choice overall, yet, you’re all still getting hit with that afternoon slump. Everyone in the family is craving sweet treats, and they have been thinking about them all day. Yes, it happens, and in this scenario, celery sticks with peanut butter just won’t do. I get it.
We know that whole grain, high-protein, plant-based foods fuel our bodies, keep our blood sugar levels in check, and help us feel our best. We also know that refined sugars, saturated fats, and white flours hold us back. So what to do? Here are a couple of sweet, yet nutrient dense swaps to fuel healthy bodies. It’s addictive, the more you eat well, the more you want to eat well.
RECIPE: GLUTEN-FREE, PROTEIN-RICH BROWNIES
When everyone is asking for brownies, make a batch of gluten-free-protein-rich-brownies. Black beans give the protein and fibre hit you need to keep you grounded till dinner. Gluten-free, thanks to the use of amazing heart-healthy oats, this warm and gooey chocolate brownie is loaded in protein, fibre and antioxidants.
- 1 1/2 Cups cooked black beans (1 15-oz can, drained and rinsed very well)
- 2 Tbsp Raw cacao powder
- 1/2 Cup quick oats
- 2 leaves kale, washed and dried
- 1/4 Tsp salt
- 1/3 Cup pure maple syrup
- 2 Tbsp Unrefined coconut oil
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 2 Tsp Vanilla
- 1/2 Tsp baking powder
- 1/2 Cup – 2/3 Cup chocolate chips – not optional!
Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine all ingredients except chips in a good food processor or strong blender. Blend until smooth. A smooth texture is a must for best taste. Stir in the chips, then pour into a greased 8×8 pan. (I grease with coconut oil).
Optional: sprinkle extra chocolate chips over the top.
Cook the black bean brownies 15-18 minutes, then let cool at least 10 minutes before trying to cut. Makes 9-12 brownies.
RECIPE: REESE’S ICE CREAM
Instead of scooping out an ice cream sundae, churn your own Reese’s ice cream. How can something so sweet and creamy be good for you? Dairy and refined sugar free, this soft serve ice cream is divinity in a cup. Overripe, frozen bananas form the base of this frosty favourite, making it a vast improvement over the cream-based classic. The added peanut butter gives it a protein and healthy fat kick, and raw cacao powder bumps up its antioxidant power.
- 2 frozen bananas
- 2 Tbsp organic nut smooth butter (peanut or almond works)
- 2 Tbsp raw cacao powder
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- Splash of water (if needed)
Put all ingredients in Vitamix or food processor and process till smooth. Add a little water if it is not breaking down quickly.
It should be smooth and lump free when finished and look like soft serve.
RECIPE: NO-BAKE CHOCOLATE POWER BALLS
Forget about the chocolate chip cookie, this raw, no-bake power ball will satiate the biggest cookie hankering. These gluten-free, protein-packed fibre bites are such a hit, we always have to make an extra batch!
- 3 Cups rolled oats
- 1/2 Cup unsweetened coconut
- 1/4 Cup coconut oil, melted
- 1/2 Cup maple syrup
- 1.5 Cups chocolate chips
- 2 Tbsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 Tsp cinnamon
- 2 Tbsp chia
- 1-2 Tbsp hemp—add extra for more protein
Optional extras: Cranberries, goji berries, flax seeds
Mix chia in half a cup of water and set aside.
Split your oats in half. Process one half into flour. Pour the other half of whole oats in bowl. Mix flour and whole rolled oats. Add in all other dry ingredients.
In separate bowl, mix together wet ingredients. Add to dry bowl. Mix well. Hands work and little hands love this.
Put in fridge for at least 30 minutes. Remove from fridge and start rolling about a tablespoon of dough forming into lil golf balls.
Place on tray and set in fridge again for at least 10 minutes so they set.
Store in fridge in airtight containers separated by parchment paper.
For more healthy recipes, visit Nourished.ca.
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