I am SO excited about this post. This ice cream is ridiculously good, ridiculously healthy, and ridiculously simple, and I have made it three times since I invented it two days ago. There are five ingredients, and you don’t need an ice cream maker. There are also NO sweeteners. This is the stuff dreams are made of. Well, my kind-of cheating whole30 dreams, at least.
Have you ever made zoodles? If you get yourself a julienne peeler, you can be making zucchini into low-carb noodle stand-ins in no time. It’s actually really good. You may not be able to fool people into thinking they are eating actual spaghetti, but I don’t think anyone will be complaining.
Okay, I know I’ve been posting a lot of pancake recipes recently. But, I had to make these because I went berry picking yesterday, and all those adorable, sweet blueberries were begging to be made into pancakes. And, I had to share this recipe with you because I snuck in one of my favorite secret ingredients.
It’s green. It’s delicious. Can you guess what it is?
This morning when I woke up, I wanted to do something a little different with my eggs. When I saw the vegetables we had in the fridge (asparagus and Brussels sprouts), I started to wonder why some vegetables are a common find at breakfast time, while some are not. Mushrooms, peppers, and onions are often seen as omelette fillings, but Brussels sprouts not so much.
Ingredients (adapted from Annie’s Eats; makes 36 small but thick bars):
For the crust and topping:
1 and 1/2 cups coconut flour
1 and 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons almond flour
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons maple sugar (granulated)
1/4 teaspoon salt
Zest of one lemon
18 tablespoons grass-fed cold butter
1 cup sliced almonds, lightly crushed
For the filling:
1 cup grass-fed milk or coconut milk
1 and 3/4 cup maple sugar
1/2 cup coconut flour
Juice of one lemon
1 and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3 and 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
Preheat the oven to 350. Line a 9×13 pan with tinfoil and grease it lightly. To make the crust, combine the flours, sugar, salt, and lemon zest in a food processor (or by hand in a large bowl). Cut the butter into cubes and pulse until the mixture is uniform. If you’re not using the food processor, it’s easiest to mix the dough with your hands. Reserve about 3/4 cup of the mixture to serve as the topping. Press the rest of it into an even layer in the bottom of the pan. Bake for about 12 minutes, until golden brown.
To make the topping, add the crushed sliced almonds to the reserved dough and mix until combined.
To make the filling, whisk together all ingredients except the blueberries until smooth. Gently stir in the blueberries.
When the crust is baked, let it cool for 10-15 minutes, leaving the oven on. Then, pour the filling over, sprinkle the topping evenly over the filling, and bake for about 45 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the middle is just set. Cool completely before cutting–it helps to put them in the refrigerator to firm up. Slice into squares or rectangles and enjoy!
Yesterday I really wanted something sweet. I’ve had good success so far making paleo treats sweetened with honey, but you’re not allowed to have honey during the Whole30. I thought there was nothing I could do to satisfy my sweet tooth, but then I remembered reading some of the fine print down at the bottom of the Whole30 site, where it said that fruit juice could be used as a sweetener. At the time, I hadn’t been able to imagine how fruit juice could make an adequate sweetener. But, in my time of desperate sweets craving, I started to think maybe I could do something with this.
These cookies are sweetened with apple juice and dried apricots. They don’t taste like apple, but they do have a nice apricot flavor and a fun subtle orange hue. They are, not surprisingly, not very sweet. I won’t judge you if you want to add a couple of tablespoons of honey. If you do, you might want to add a little more almond flour as well (or less apple juice) so the batter won’t be too wet.
If you like a moist, rich cookie that’s guilt-free, these are for you. The vanilla bean seeds, butter, and almond flour provide lots of great flavor and texture to make up for the cookies not being overly sweet. And, with only five ingredients plus salt, these cookies couldn’t be easier to make! However, I’m not going to lie to you: they are not crispy at all. I haven’t figured out how to make gluten-free cookies crispy. If you have the secret, please share it! If you’re looking for a sweeter cookie, check out the “You might also like” section at the end of this post.
Ingredients (makes about 15 cookies):
1/2 cup dried apricots, soaked in warm water for 10-20 minutes
1/2 cup apple juice
1 cup almond flour
6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into chunks
1/2 vanilla bean
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 325, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drain the dried apricots and place them in a food processor with the apple juice. Process, scraping down the bowl as necessary, until the mixture has a jam-like texture with very small pieces of apricot.
Add the almond flour, butter, and salt, and scrape in the vanilla bean seeds. Process until well combined. Spoon tablespoon sized balls of batter onto the prepared sheet and flatten them slightly (cookies will not spread as they bake). Bake for about 12 minutes, until golden brown around the edges. Cool for a few minutes on the sheet, then carefully transfer to a rack to cool completely.
I am going strong on the fourth day of my Whole30! I’ve been taking a look at my recipe index, trying to find more recipes I can tweak to make them paleo. I like variety, and it can’t ALL be about almond flour pancakes and zucchini noodles. The more dishes I have in my paleo arsenal, the more likely I am to successfully stay full and on track.
This weekend is going to be a big challenge, because I’m heading down to Austin for my cousin’s wedding. It’s going to be really hard to say no to tacos and wedding cake! I’m thinking about relaxing my standards a TINY bit while I’m there…nothing too crazy, but maybe a little barbecue sauce. Do you guys know any great Austin restaurants where I might be able to get great food without straying too far from my paleo intentions? If you do, leave me a comment! I’ll take some pictures while I’m out and about and share with you when I get back.
So, without further ado, here are ten recipes from my index along with easy ways to make sure they’re paleo.
1. Gambas al ajillo–this recipe is ALREADY paleo! It would be great over zucchini noodles.
4. Chocolate Mousse–sweeten with honey to taste instead of sugar. If you haven’t tried this, check it out–there is a secret ingredient and it’s SO easy and decadent!
Ingredients (serves 2):
For the steak:
2/3 pound thin sliced top round steak (or another thin cut)
1 tablespoon coconut aminos
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon red chili paste
Juice of half a lime
For the salad:
2 zucchini, cut or peeled into thin, noodle-like matchsticks
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon almond butter
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon coconut aminos
1 tablespoon apple juice
1/2 avocado, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon roasted sesame seeds
To make the marinade, combine all ingredients in a shallow bowl and toss with the steak to coat. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes or in the refrigerator for up to two hours. If you marinate in the refrigerator, take the meat out 30 minutes before you plan to cook it to let it come to room temperature.
Heat a George Foreman grill or a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the steak to your desired doneness. Set steaks aside on a plate, covered.
In a medium bowl, combine the almond butter, sesame oil, coconut aminos, and apple juice to make a smooth sauce. Toss the zucchini to coat it with the sauce, and divide the zucchini between two plates. Slice the steak into strips and place it on top of the zucchini. Top the steak with the avocado slices and a sprinkling of sesame seeds. Serve warm or chilled with lime wedges.
The almond flour pancakes I made a few days ago were so good that I was eager to try another version of paleo pancakes. This time, I was inspired by a cinnamon banana pancake recipe in Easy Paleo Diet Recipes, and added a twist to make them even better.
Do you have a favorite diner? Mine is the Maugus, which is just down the street from my mom’s apartment in my hometown. It’s run by a big Greek family, and the hardest part of being a regular there is when they close for three weeks every summer to go to Greece. They are closed right now and I have to tell you, it has been rough. One of my favorite things to get there is pancakes–their pancakes are HUGE! I’m a big fan of both the strawberry and the banana pancakes. They have nice rounds of freshly sliced fruit cooked right in. They will even make you pancakes with both strawberries AND bananas if you can’t decide. And, if you are not into fruity pancakes (who are you and why are you still reading?) you can get chocolate chip pancakes or cinnamon walnut french toast.
Anyway, inspired by the Maugus, I put sliced strawberries into these banana pancakes. The banana is mashed up with the batter so the pancakes do not have a strong banana flavor, but they are pleasantly reminiscent of banana bread. And if you have never tried sliced strawberries in your pancakes, you HAVE to. They are cooked just to the point of being fabulously juicy, and it is much more exciting than just putting sliced strawberries on top of your pancakes. Trust me.
Since I am doing the Whole 30 for real now, I omitted the honey from the original recipe. However, with the bananas and the strawberries, I thought these pancakes were sweet enough. I ate mine with the extra banana and strawberry slices on top and a little butter, and my boyfriend enjoyed his with some syrup.
Ingredients (serves 2; makes 6-7 pancakes):
1 and 1/2 cups almond flour
1/3 cup mashed banana (about half a medium banana–slice the rest to serve with the pancakes)
3 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons coconut milk
Pinch of salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 and 1/2 cups fresh strawberries, thinly sliced, plus extra for serving
Butter or coconut oil for cooking
Combine all the ingredients except the strawberries in a food processor and process until smooth. Heat some oil or butter in a small, heavy skillet over medium heat. When the skillet is hot (a drop of water will dance across the surface), add about 1/4 cup of batter. Place some strawberry slices on top. Cook until many bubbles have formed on the surface (the bottom should be browned). Carefully slide a large spatula under the pancake and flip it quickly. If you flip these pancakes too soon or use a small spatula, you may lose some of your strawberries during the turn. Cook for a minute or less on the second side, until browned and cooked through. Add more oil or butter before cooking a second pancake. Top with fresh fruit and butter if desired and serve hot.
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