Raw Coconut Macaroons

I’ve been reading Kimberly Snyder’s book “Beauty Detox Foods” and absolutely adore it. One of my fave sweet treat flavors, is coconut. And these lovelies are raw, vegan & gluten free. Win-Win-Win.

xoxo

Becky

Raw Coconut Macaroons img_5472

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups coconut flakes
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp raw coconut sugar (used instead of stevia)
  • 1/2 cup raw coconut nectar
  • pinch of sea salt

 

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, mix together the coconut flakes, cacao powder, coconut sugar, sea salt, and vanilla extract.  Add the coconut nectar last and mix well until everything is well-combined.
  2. Scoop a small amount into hands and roll into shape.  This step is a bit messy as the coconut nectar is quite sticky, but that’s part of the fun of cooking!
  3. Place macaroons into the freezer for a few hours.  Sprinkle with some extra coconut flakes and serve cold.
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My Secret Obsession

Ok, it’s no real secret. I love chocolate! Who doesn’t though, right? Sometimes, a girl just needs a sugar fix. Makes me feel naughty. Wink. Since going vegan though, it’s hard to find a quick fix chocolate bar treat that I can actually eat! Everything has either too much sugar or some sort of dairy in it. Which just doesn’t fly with me. Also, I have been craving mint chocolate these days, which just makes it harder to find something I can eat and that’s tasty.

Well my lovely bloggy blog readers, I found it! The Holy Grail of mint chocolate bars. O-M-Goodness, did I ever find it.

Theobroma. Best chocolate bar I’ve evah had. Their 60% dark mint leaves is beyond amazing and not only is it vegan (I thought only 70% and higher had no dairy, but I was wrong!) but it’s also natural, organic, gluten free and GMO free! And, it tastes like heaven. It’s not too dark, so it’s not bitter and it’s not just mint flavoring. There are actual for reals mint leaves right in the bar, so it adds a really unique texture as well. DE968-l

Only down side to this, is that I’ve only found it at my local organic store and it’s more money than your average bar. But it’s so rich, you don’t need alot of it so it lasts a while. May I also suggest using it for a sexy fruit fondu! Yummy. I’m also going to work this chocolate into some delish recipes for the future, so watch for those!

Theobroma’s delightful dark chocolate will astound you with its full force of flavor. Combined with the natural flavor of real mint leaves, this leaves other mint chocolates in the dust. Seriously, it’s amazing. I think it’s the texture that puts it over the top. Nothing beats something that’s pure and natural. The ingredients are simple and easy to pronounce too 😉 Organic Fair Trade Cocoa Mass, Organic Fair Trade Cane Sugar, Organic Fair Trade Cocoa Butter, and Mint. That’s it. Oh! And did I mention that the entire bar is only 400 calories?! Which is by far the least amount of calories I’ve seen in a chocolate bar this good.

So if you are lucky enough to see this while you’re out and about, treat yourself and thank me later 😉

xoxo

Becky

Vegan Cooking & Baking Substitutions

I came across an article on VegNews that I really wanted to share. It’s all about vegan substitutes for cooking and baking! It can sometimes be hard to keep track of how and what to do when it comes to vegan substitutions, so I hope this guide helps 🙂

xoxo

Becky

Vegan Cooking & Baking Substitutions

Ban Butter
What it does
: In baking, butter adds flavor and a rich and sometimes a spongy texture. It also helps baked goods rise evenly and adds to both the density and sweetness.
How to substitute: Butter is extremely easy to substitute in vegan baking. If baking a recipe that has natural spice or flavor to it, such as spice cookies or gingerbread, olive oil or untoasted sesame oil work well. Unrefined coconut oil (which is solid at room temperature) can add the thickness that butter would, and canola oil works in recipes with liquid sugars (think maple syrup) or solid fats, such as groundnuts or chocolates in cakes. Vegan shortening works well with cookies and piecrusts. And of course, there’s vegan margarine, which creates the buttery taste so many desserts require.

Move Over, Milk
What it does
: Milk adds flavor and richness and creates texture in baking.
How to substitute: Milk is definitely the easiest to substitute in vegan baking, as many non-dairy milks already exist. Full-fat soymilk will help create the richness of whole milk, while rice milk is lighter. Almond milk sometimes can add a subtle almond taste, as can coconut milk, and both will contribute to the richness of a recipe. For added vanilla oomph, try vanilla-flavored non-dairy milk.

Oust Eggs
What it does: Eggs add moisture and act as a binding agent in baking. They are also a leavening agent, helping food to rise during baking.
How to substitute: Milk might be the easiest ingredient to sub, but a close second goes to egg substitutes. Ground flax seeds are a popular substitute that are also nutritious—three tablespoons of water to one tablespoon of ground flax seeds equates to one egg. Mashed banana and applesauce are other healthy alternatives that completely cut out the cholesterol eggs add to baking. Baking powder, baking soda, and vinegar are also aces. And soy yogurt is a creative way to replace eggs and can add a rich texture to your baking, as can puréed black beans.

Hit the Road, Honey
What it does: Honey acts as a natural sweetener. It also helps to brown your baked goods, adds color, and retains moisture.
How to substitute: Simply reach for other viscous liquids, such as maple syrup or rice syrup. They add the same natural sweetness and contribute to the browning effects. You can try cooking them a little to simmer out some of the water to create a thicker syrup too.

Can It, Cream
What it does: Cream creates a smooth and sometimes fluffy texture in baked goods. It adds richness, and can make for a satin-like quality.
How to substitute: The richness of coconut milk can make a good replacement for cream. For a homemade replacement, blend one-part cashews and one part water until smooth. There are also a variety of non-dairy creams and creamers on the market.

Acai Immunity Smoothie

Mmmm, smoothies. One of my most favorite things to experiment with in the kitchen! This recipe is easy-peasy and totally yummy 🙂
xoxo
Becky
acaiAcai Immunity Smoothie
 
1 14oz bottle of ZICO pineapple coconut water
2.5 oz fresh organic spinach
1/2 fresh mango
1/4 packet of frozen Sambazon Acai (Immunity Smoothie Pack)
 
Place coconut water, spinach and mango into a blender. Warm the frozen Acai under hot water for 5 seconds then add to the mix and blend together until smooth. For a creamier drink, add half an avocado. Add sweetener to taste, but it really doesn’t need it in my opinion! 🙂
 

Beauty Detox Baby!

I fell in love with Kimberly Snyder’s first book, The Beauty Detox Solution and as soon as her new book came out, I had it in my hands! Beauty Detox Foods is another lovely addition to my growing library of health, nutrition and vegan-y books! I highly recommend you go out and get them if you can, they are awesomesauce.

xoxo

Becky

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Vegan & Gluten Free? Say Whaaa?

I’m pretty proud of myself. Recently, I decided to go totally vegan & gluten free. I did this mainly for health reasons, as I was finding when I ate gluten or any kind of cheese I was getting incredibly ill. It was borderline ridiculous. Also, it challenges me on a daily basis. I find myself always now checking the ingredients & opting out of ordering in or eating out, when I can. And I’ll be honest, I think it’s helping. It gives me a goal for the whole day. Not that I don’t have bigger goals, but this experience makes it so I have mini goals, every day. And I like that.

I’ve been a vegetarian for the last few years now, and I went totally cold turkey doing that. I can even tell you the day I decided to do it and what I was doing! But that was easy for me, as I never really ate alot of meat products anyways. I’mma good girl, I happen to like my fruits & veggies. (Except peas. Never peas.) But I knew going vegan would hurt. I knew giving up cheese, would be the ultimate test. Cheese is really the only dairy product I ate anyways, and even that was rare. But I found recently that I’ve been getting sick after eating it, so I said to myself, “HEY! SELF! We’re trying out the vegan way, sexy.” And that was that.

As for the gluten, well, again I noticed I kept getting sick. So since stopping the glutenous foods, I’ve already noticed a change in me. So, I think I’m going to stick this out and keep on doing what I’m doing. I’ve changed my whole way of thinking and looking at food. It’s not even food to me anymore, it’s what I’m putting in my body. That’s how I think of it.

Add on my daily yoga & me time, well I’ll soon be taking over the world!

(Or at least just my mind, body & soul… That’s good enough for me though.)

Peace, love & sarcasm,

Becky

Recipe Time: Spicy Vegan Kale Pasta

vegan-kale-pasta1

I love my pasta. It’s one of my most favorite things to cook with, serve and eat! This is a recipe I found and la-la-la-loved. It’s a tasty little dish that is sure to fire up your night 😉 And for those of you meat lovers out there, you can easily add a protein to this dish. I think chicken breast would be best, but what do I know? I’m just a poor little vegematarian 🙂

Enjoy!

Peace, love & sarcasm,

Becky

Spicy Vegan Kale Pasta

  • 8 ounces penne pasta
  • 1/4 onion, chopped
  • 3 large handfuls of kale (about 4-5 cups, loosely packed)
  • 2 tablespoons salsa (optional)
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. chile powder
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. garlic salt
  • Olive oil

Directions

Cook pasta according to directions. In a large pan, warm a few tablespoons of olive oil. Toss in chopped onions and kale, and sauté until kale has cooked down completely. In a blender, add spices, salsa, and non-dairy milk. Blend until you have a creamy consistency, adding more milk or water if too thick. Add cooked kale to pasta pot and toss with cream sauce. Sprinkle with a dash of chile powder for some color. Serves two. (One for you and your special someone, or just all for you! Go ahead and eat it all up, I won’t judge.)