Tag Archives for " Vegan "

Black Forest Chia Pudding

There is nothing like fresh, sweet cherries combined with chocolate. Oh my! This delectable creamy pudding is high in healthy fats, fiber and nutrients.

If you can’t get fresh cherries in your area, you can use frozen. I find that using this little tool is super helpful in pitting those fresh cherries.

Serve this delish dessert at a dinner party, and woo your guests. They’ll never guess it’s healthy OR vegan!

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1-1/2 cups cashews, soaked for 1 hour
  • ½ to 1 cup coconut water
  • 1/3 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3 dates, pitted
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • ¼ cup chia seeds
  • ½ cup pitted cherries, roughly chopped

Place all ingredients except chia seeds and cherries in a high-powered blender. If mixture is too thick, add coconut water until desired consistency. Blend until smooth. Pour into a medium sized bowl. Add chia seeds and cherries to the pudding mixture and stir until all combined. Refrigerate for 20 – 30 minutes to thicken. Serve chilled.

Strawberry Avocado Ice Cream/Fruit Pops

It’s that time of year when Strawberries are back in season, and I LOVE to use them in ice creams, sauces, salads & dressings.

But my all time fave, is vegan ice cream!! This delicious concoction is all vegan, low glycemic and simple to make. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, feel free to make them into fruit pops using ice pop molds. YUM!

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 can coconut milk, full fat
  • 10 medium whole strawberries
  • 1/2 ripe avocado
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons raw shredded coconut
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons xylitol or 1-1/2 tablespoons maple syrup or 4-6 drops
  • chocolate stevia
  • pinch sea salt

Place all ingredients in a blender, and blend until creamy smooth. Pour into ice cream maker following manufacturer’s instructions or pour into pop molds and freeze to set.

Top with shredded coconut, nuts or shaved raw chocolate! A perfect Summer treat. So healthy, you can have dessert BEFORE dinner!

Creamy, Raw Nut Milk

Vegan Nut Milks are super simple to make, really delicious and good for you. Soaking nuts can help cut the fat content down as well.

Be sure to always use raw nuts, as they are more nutrient dense then their roasted counterparts, and have less saturated fat.

I love to also make hemp milk using hemp seeds. You can get creative with this recipe and use whatever kind of nuts you like.

This nut milk is also a great base for vegan ice creams, especially if you have access to an ice cream maker! YUM!

Also, great to use on cereal, oatmeal or quinoa brekkie bowl, or used as a base for your morning smoothie!!

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup raw almonds or cashews, soaked overnight
  • 4 cups filtered water
  • Stevia or coconut nectar/palm sugar, to taste
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract or beans of a whole vanilla bean
  • dash of cardamom, cinnamon or nutmeg (be creative, and use what you like)

After soaking almonds, drain and rinse them well. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. If you want the milk completely smooth,  strain the milk through a fine sieve strainer or cheesecloth. Otherwise leave in the chunky bits for added nutrition and fiber!!

Raw Vegan Donut Holes

Donuts are an American favorite, but unfortunately they are loaded with sugar and fat. An evil combination when it comes to your health. These delicious donut holes are raw, vegan and delicious. Made with cashews and walnuts as a base, they are great for your brain, as well as providing sustained energy. I sometimes use different combinations of nuts, for different flavor, so get creative!

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1-1/2 cups cashews
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 5 dates, pitted
  • 1/4 c. grade B maple syrup or brown rice syrup
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a food processor cup fitted with the s-blade, grind the cashews, walnuts, coconut and sea salt to a crumbly consistency but leaving some chunks of nuts.

Add in remaining ingredients and process until the mixture forms into a sticky dough. Remove lid and scrape out into a bowl. Roll into small truffle size balls and roll in cinnamon or shredded coconut. Store in refrigerator.

Pumpkin Chia Pudding

This delicious pudding is a must-have for dessert at the Thanksgiving Dinner Table. It’s healthy, loaded with fiber, omegas and medium-chain fatty acids to keep your metabolism revved up! You can even throw it into a pie crust (gluten free & vegan, of course) if you want and have a Pumpkin Chia Pudding Pie!

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 cup chia seeds
  • 1 can coconut milk (full fat)
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin or pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup cashews, soaked 2 hours
  • 5 dates pitted
  • 2 tablespoons Grade B Maple Syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of Sea Salt
  • fresh ground nutmeg (garnish)

 

Place chia seeds in a medium-sized bowl. Blend remaining ingredients together in a high- powered blender until creamy smooth. Pour mixture over the chia seeds. Stir well to combine and let sit for about 10-15 minutes or until pudding firms up. Refrigerate for an even thicker pudding. Top with fresh ground nutmeg as a garnish.

 

Banana Chia Seed Pudding

Chia seeds are all the rage these days. A lot of you may remember them from the old-school Ch-ch-ch-chia pet commercials, but now they are making their way into many kitchens across the country not as plant heads & pets, but as a high-nutrient ingredient that is keeping people healthy & providing energy. They are the highest source of Omega 3’s on the planet and they also contain protein, fiber and so many other great nutrients. They help to lower cholesterol and have heart-healthy antioxidants. I love to bake with them as they can be used as an egg substitute in a lot of recipes, they have the same binding properties. You can also throw them in smoothies for a little extra nutrient kick!

This recipe is simple to make and has only 6 ingredients and all you need is a high-powered blender, such as a Vita Mix or Blend-tec. You won’t miss the dairy in this awesome recipe, and you don’t need to use tofu either, as most vegan puddings do these days.

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 large ripe bananas
  • 1-1/2 c. almond milk, unsweetened
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract
  • 1/3 c. pitted dates
  • 2 tbs chia seeds soaked in 4 tbs water for 10 minutes until gelatinous
  • 3 tbs raw cashew butter

Place all ingredients in high power blender and blend until thick and creamy. Pour into bowls and refrigerate to firm up for 2 hours. Serve with fresh berries.

Here are some of my favorite resources for Chia Seeds

Mila by LifeMax – 3 varities of the best chia seeds you can find in the world all blended together!

Nutiva Brand – different organic varieties of Chia

Black Bean Brownie Bites

Brownies are everyone’s favorite, so I wanted to come up with a healthier version that was just as tasty. These bites are loaded with fiber yet still maintain the chocolatey goodness of a regular brownie! Your kids will love them too!

I make them in a mini-muffin pan, but feel free to use an 8×8 brownie pan. Just adjust the cooking time to longer in the oven by about 10 minutes.

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups black beans (freshly cooked is best, but canned is ok- drain & rinse if canned)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/3 cup of raw blue agave nectar or Grade B maple syrup
  • ½ cup date paste* (see recipe below) *allow 1 hour soaking time for date paste
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • ½ cup raw cacao powder
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ cup oat or almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup grain sweetened or vegan chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Grease mini muffin tins with coconut oil or coconut spray.

In a food processor with S-blade, combine black beans, banana, agave nectar, date paste, coconut oil, cacao powder, vanilla, cinnamon & sea salt until combined well and smooth. Transfer mixture to a large bowl.Stir in the remaining ingredients. Fill mini muffin tins about 2/3 full and bake 25-30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool in pan for 10 minutes and transfer to a wire rack.

To make Date Paste: Pour 2/3 cup of hot water over 1 cup pitted dates and then soak for about an hour. Throw all ingredients into a blender and process until a smooth, thick paste is formed.

Yield: Makes about 30 mini muffins

Raw Vegan Lime Cheesecake

This little beauty is perfect to make for a Valentine’s Day bash. Who has valentine’s day bashes you ask? Well, all the single peeps of course!!! This is a decadent and healthy treat to share with all your friends…and family as well! Even the kids will love it!

Making desserts with cashews is one of my favorite things to do. They are so sweet and creamy that you won’t even miss the cream cheese, which is the normal and fatty ingredient in all regular cheesecakes.

Recipe & photo created by one of my very talented cleansers!

 

INGREDIENTS (CRUST)

  • 2 c. raw pecans or macadamias
  • 1/2 c. dried coconut
  • ¼ c. agave nectar
  • dash sea salt

In food processor, pulse pecans or macadamias, agave and coconut together until sticky. Press into a 9-inch spring form pan. If it’s too sticky you can wet your fingers and press into the pan.

 

INGREDIENTS (FILLING)

  • 3 c. cashews, soaked for 4 hours
  • 1 c. dates, pitted and chopped, soaked for 2 hours (save soaking water)
  • 6 TBS. coconut oil, melted
  • ½ c. lime juice
  • ½ c. agave nectar
  • 6 TBS date soak water
  • 2 tsp vanilla or one vanilla bean

In a strong blender, blend cashews, coconut oil, lime juice, agave, date soak water, vanilla & dates until smooth. Pour into crust and freeze for 1-2 hours until firm. Remove from freezer and let sit for 15 minutes. Slice and serve immediately. Serve with berry sauce or fresh berries.

January 27, 2012

Losing the Weight of Your Emotions

When I begin working with new clients and I hear from them that they have tried every diet known to man with no “success,” I always know there is something deeper happening than their desire to lose weight. Of course their desire is valid, but usually it’s not just about the weight that they are carrying and they want to shed. They’ve struggled with yo-yo dieting and cleansing and many other avenues that they thought would get them healthy and lean, but they ended up back where they started or even further back.

The reason I became so interested in food and nutrition, is because I have struggled most of my life with emotional eating and a distorted body image. I must say, it hasn’t been an easy road at all and I have done so much work around deeper healing and looking into why I have this “issue”. Some days I have intense feelings that keep me up late into the night obsessing over the bag of rice chips I ate, or the ½ pint of coconut ice cream that I downed when I wasn’t even hungry.  I can also tend to obsess over body image issues…that my jeans are tighter today than they were yesterday, or my belly is not as flat as it was the day before, or if every calorie I put in my mouth is going to make me fat.  These times come much less frequent these days and I am not going to say that I have totally healed, but I have definitely dug into deeper parts of myself to see what is running these parts of me and learned how to give myself what I really need in those moments to move through them much more gracefully than in the past.

Eating is something we need to do to stay alive. It’s not like other addictions where we can give up said substance and still survive, even though it may feel like we are going to die without it. Food is our nourishment, our vitality, our life. If we don’t know how to relate to food and our bodies in a healthy way, then we will have issues with weight, overeating, under-eating and so much more. I think you get the picture.

Our emotions and feelings play such a big role in our lives. It’s so important to look deeper into these feelings we have around our body, eating and food as they will give us messages of what our bodies and our souls really need. It’s not about the next quick fix diet, or cleanse or fast. It’s about really going inward and asking your body what it needs, or asking your soul what it needs and most of the time that answer is – Love.

Loving ourselves is such a huge part of learning how to live with emotional eating. I don’t think this “addiction” ever fully goes away, but the more we learn to love ourselves, the more this little, or big, monster will calm down and take the proverbial back seat. I know that some of you may be thinking that you are not ready to look at what it is that is driving your overeating, or emotional food choices or body image obsession, but I am here to tell you that the only way out of this, is through this.

If you struggle with any of the things that I have mentioned, seek out help with a professional, start to write in a journal, begin to really get in touch with “WHEN you are eating, WHY you are eating and WHAT you are eating.” Start to notice what you put in your mouth and why. Is your body really hungry or are your emotions screaming out to you for something else? Are you craving love, attention and affection? If so, how can you give this to yourself? Maybe you could call a friend, or stop and take a few deep breaths – whatever it is that will help you really tune into what is going on internally, before you fill your mouth with an unhealthy food that will not nourish you in any way except to feed your “in the moment” craving for something else bigger.

Begin to really notice those moments when you have a craving and see if you can stop, take a breath and check in with yourself. Do you really want that sugary donut, bag of chips or chocolate bar? Or do you really want a hug from someone?  So many of our food cravings are brought about by memories of comfort when we were kids. So it’s normal to want certain foods if we are feeling down or sad, but the wise thing to do in a situation like this is to skip the food and find a way to comfort yourself. I know this sounds strange, but the love we give to ourselves and feel for ourselves is the most important love of all. So where and how can you start to love yourself more so that you don’t become slave to your emotional eating, which can lead to extra pounds, depression, shame and self-loathing?

Just one small, positive action can start to break the cycle…what will yours be?