Banana Blueberry Muffins
Make Your Own Almond Milk
Here’s how to make your own almond milk at home. It’s paleo, vegan, and easy to make–and the results are way more delicious than store-bought versions!
Do you drink coffee? How do you take yours? Have you ever had to switch the way you make your morning coffee?
One of the hardest parts about the whole30 for me has been adjusting what I put in my coffee. I used to put lots of 2% milk and a little agave or stevia, plus sometimes a few drops of vanilla. It wasn’t that hard eliminating the sweetener, because I love the simple synergy of milk and coffee. Since I also love coconut milk, I thought that might be a great choice for my morning cup. But coconut milk is terrible in coffee. It’s too thick. Even light coconut milk in a carton is too thick (and has icky things like carageenan added to it). Coffee shouldn’t be viscous, so coconut milk is out.
The next thing I tried was almond milk. It’s hard to find unsweetened almond milk without too many additives, but the Whole Foods brand wasn’t too bad. And when I put that almond milk in my coffee, it was fine. I had to put a lot more almond milk than regular milk, because you can pour in a lot of almond milk before your coffee stops looking (and tasting) totally black. Anyway, coffee with store-bought almond milk is okay, but I figured I could do better.
This homemade almond milk is easy, and you can add a little whole30-friendly sweetness by putting in a few dried apricots (or dates). The ingredients list is short and wholesome, and the result is much more delicious than what you find at the store. Creamy and subtly sweet, this homemade almond milk is by far the best nondairy milk I’ve found to go with my morning coffee. Of course, it’s also great on its own or blended into smoothies.
This recipe makes lightly sweetened vanilla almond milk; just omit the vanilla and dried fruit if you would like to make plain almond milk.
Ingredients (makes about 2 and 1/2 cups; adapted from Choosing Raw):
1 cup raw almonds
Water for soaking
3 cups water
Pinch of salt
2-4 dried apricots or dates, pitted and soaked in hot water (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional, omit for Whole30)
Cheesecloth or a nut milk bag
Soak the almonds in water to cover for at least two hours, or up to eight. Drain and rinse the almonds and discard the soaking water. Place the almonds, 3 cups of water, salt, apricots or dates, and vanilla in a blender. Blend on high speed for a minute or so until smooth.
Line a sieve with cheesecloth and place over a large bowl, or place a nut milk bag over a large jar, securing it with a rubber band. Pour the almond milk into the sieve or nut milk bag. Allow it to drain for up to an hour (or if you are impatient like me, squeeze the cheesecloth or bag to remove as much liquid as possible). Discard pulp, or save to use in smoothies. Store almond milk in the refrigerator for 2-3 days, and shake before using.
This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase on Amazon after clicking one of my links, I receive a small commission (the price you pay is not affected). Thank you so much for supporting my site!
Cherry (Chocolate) Almond No-Churn Ice Cream
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.
Almond Blueberry Pie Bars (Paleo, Gluten-free)
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!
Almond Pancakes with Blueberry Compote (Paleo, Gluten-free)
Pancakes! The perfect breakfast food. When I spotted a recipe for almond flour pancakes in one of the paleo cookbooks I picked up, I was eager to try it. Surprisingly, these pancakes are a lot like regular pancakes. Since the batter is made in the food processor, it’s nice and smooth without any noticeable chunks of almond. These pancakes also make a hearty and high-protein breakfast since the recipe calls for four eggs. With the blueberry compote and a few sliced almonds on top, you will be in your pancake happy place. I’m starting to think regular flour is totally superfluous!
Ingredients (makes 6 large pancakes; serves 2):
For the blueberry compote:
1 and 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries (I used frozen)
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon honey, or to taste
Pinch of salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
For the almond pancakes (adapted from Easy Paleo Diet Recipes):
1 and 1/2 cups almond flour
1/4 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Butter or coconut oil for cooking
Sliced almonds, for serving
To make the blueberry compote, place all ingredients in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until some of the blueberries have collapsed and the liquid is syrupy, 10-15 minutes. Set aside to cool.
To make the pancakes, process all ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Heat the butter or coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat, and add about 1/4 cup of batter. Cook the pancake until the top is covered with bubbles. Flip and cook until golden on the other side. Add a little more butter or oil before cooking the next pancake.
Serve hot with blueberry compote and sliced almonds.
This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Blackberry, Almond, and Rocket Salad with Fresh Mozzarella
Did you know that arugula is called rocket in the UK? Arugula is a pretty fun word, but rocket is even better. This salad has rocket in it, along with all the other delicious things listed in the title. After making blackberry cupcakes for this month’s Get Your Chef On challenge, I wanted to do something else fabulous with the rest of my juicy blackberries. I dreamed up this salad, and thought about it all day during class.
I was happy to find that it was even better than I had imagined! The spicy arugula, sweet blackberries, creamy mozzarella, and toasty almonds are the perfect combination. This is my new favorite summer salad. Ben loved it, too! When I served it he said it looked fancy (secret–any salad with blackberries looks fancy!), and then he asked for seconds. Usually he’s a one plate of salad kind of guy.
So, here’s what I would recommend. Go buy a lot of blackberries, make these cupcakes, then make this salad. A light dinner with a decadent dessert is the perfect thing to have on a summer evening.
Ingredients (serves 2):
1/2 cup sliced almonds
3 cups arugula
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Pinch of sea salt
1 heaping cup blackberries
4 ounces fresh mozzarella, roughly cubed
Toast the almonds in a dry skillet over medium heat, stirring often to make sure they don’t burn, until golden brown (less than five minutes). Set aside to cool.
Toss the arugula with the oil, vinegar, and salt and adjust seasonings to taste.
To serve, line plate with arugula. Top with blackberries, fresh mozzarella, and toasted almonds. Enjoy!
Chewy Chocolate Almond Cookies
Guess what? In only 20 minutes, you can have rich, chewy chocolate almond cookies with no gluten, no butter or oil, no egg yolks, and no dairy! It sounds too good to be true, but these cookies are really delicious!
You’ll end up with a couple of egg yolks, which you could save for ice cream.
The bad news is that my bag of almond flour is now almost gone! I’ll definitely be buying more. From financiers to mocha brownies to these cookies, it’s my new favorite healthy baking ingredient. Go get some and make these today!
Note: You won’t taste the coffee in these cookies–I just added it to bring out the chocolate flavor. You can leave it out if you want a decaf cookie :0.
Ingredients (adapted from Heather’s Dish):
2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 rounded tablespoons cocoa
1 teaspoon finely ground coffee (optional)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350, and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, mix together the dry ingredients. Add the egg whites, vanilla, and almond extract and stir until the dough comes together.
Drop tablespoon-sized balls of dough onto the parchment paper, and flatten the tops slightly with your hand or a spoon (the cookies will not spread much at all while cooking). Bake for 10-15 minutes, until crisp on the outside but not burned on the bottoms. Cool on a wire rack.
Mocha Almond Flourless Brownies
Yesterday I got some almond flour and blue cornmeal in the mail from Bob’s Red Mill. I was super excited to try some chocolate baked goods with the almond flour. Did you know it’s just ground-up almonds? Amazing. Full of heart-healthy fats and protein instead of the empty carbs in flour.
I decided to try these flourless brownies, adapted from this recipe on Om Nom Ally. They are really good! The coffee and almond flavors are subtle, but add an extra richness to the chocolate flavor. The brownies are really fudgy and moist, which makes them very satisfying. Just one is enough (until the craving strikes again an hour later…).
These brownies are not overly sweet. I actually added extra sugar, because the original recipe only called for 2 tablespoons and I didn’t want a bitter brownie. I think my version came out great, but I would have dusted them with some powdered sugar if I hadn’t been out.
Ingredients (makes 9-12 brownies):
1 cup almond flour (finely ground almonds)
1/2 cup cocoa, plus extra for dusting
1-3 teaspoons finely ground coffee, to taste
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, melted, plus extra for greasing the pan
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
Powdered sugar for dusting (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350. Grease an 8 x 8 baking dish and powder the bottom and sides with cocoa.
In a large bowl, mix the almond flour, cocoa, coffee, salt, and baking powder.
In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, butter, milk, eggs, and extracts. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool and cut into squares.
Make Your Own Chocolate Truffles (plus Vegan Coconut Almond Truffles)
Chocolate truffles are so easy to make, it’s amazing that places like Godiva get away with charging so much for them. If you want yours to be even more like the ones at the chocolate shop, you can melt your favorite milk or dark chocolate and dip the chilled truffles in it instead of rolling them in cocoa powder and confectioner’s sugar. Use a fork to remove the truffle once it’s covered in melted chocolate. Let the extra drip off, and place the truffle on wax or parchment paper or in a candy cup. This is a deliciously rich, fancy, no-bake dessert that will impress anyone. Chocolate truffles also make a great gift wrapped up in a cellophane bag or placed in a decorative box or tin. This recipe makes about 20 truffles.