Clean Plate Mama https://cleanplatemama.com Clean food recipes made from real food ingredients. Sat, 12 May 2018 15:49:43 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.8 https://i0.wp.com/cleanplatemama.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/cropped-CleanPlateMama-Logo.png?fit=32%2C32&ssl=1 Clean Plate Mama https://cleanplatemama.com 32 32 135680581 Creamy Green Goodness Smoothie https://cleanplatemama.com/creamy-green-goodness-smoothie/ https://cleanplatemama.com/creamy-green-goodness-smoothie/#respond Thu, 19 Apr 2018 19:51:22 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=653 This green creamy smoothie is calling your name. This smoothie gets it’s creamy goodness from avocado; no bananas used here! It is packed with nutrients and contains limited fruit. Of course every smoothie needs some fruit, but some smoothies pack in an entire day’s worth in one glass, so I like to steer away from smoothies that are mainly fruit.

Lately my 3 year old has been loving smoothies! She loves making them, turning on the blender (and then running away because it’s too loud), and of course drinking them. She even loves playing “smoothie shop” where she comes with fake money once the smoothie is ready in return for a cup of smoothie. Some she really likes, and some she will only take a few sips of and be done, but this one is a favorite. It packs in spinach, cucumber, strawberries, apple, avocado, and flax seeds… what’s not to like!?

Tall skinny glass filled with green smoothie and a green and white striped straw.

I use coconut water to up the vitamin and mineral content. However, regular water will do just fine if you don’t have coconut water. Coconut water is also high in electrolytes, so it’s great in smoothies for post work-outs, or just to help keep you hydrated.  Make sure to look for coconut water without added sweeteners or other ingredients. The best choice you can buy is organic coconut water that is found in the refrigerated section. Coconut water that is found non-refrigerated has most likely been pasteurized with heat, which can strip the nutritional content from the coconut water.

This smoothie ends up being pretty thick if made as listed. Pending how thick you like your smoothies you can adjust the amount of water to your liking. We like how thick it is as it’s fun to switch things up a bit and eat it with a spoon, but you can always add more water if you’d like.

If you make this recipe, please let me know what you think! Leave a comment below and/or share a photo on Instagram and mention @CleanPlateMama!

Creamy Green Goodness Smoothie

Print Recipe
Serves: 1 Cooking Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 6 slices cucumber (about a 3" piece of cucumber)
  • 1/2 apple, sliced
  • 1 cup packed spinach
  • 1 cup coconut water (regular water works too)
  • 3 tbsp. flax seeds
  • 1 scoop plant based protein powder (optional)

Instructions

1

Place all ingredients in a high speed blender.

2

Blend on high until fully blended.

3

Pour in glass, sip, and enjoy!

Notes

I use organic ingredients wherever possible. The only ingredient I don't prefer as organic is the avocado.

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/creamy-green-goodness-smoothie/feed/ 0 653
Skillet Vegetable Lasagna https://cleanplatemama.com/skillet-vegetable-lasagna/ https://cleanplatemama.com/skillet-vegetable-lasagna/#respond Sat, 14 Apr 2018 03:25:14 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=644 This easy skillet vegetable lasagna only needs simple ingredients, one pan, and a little bit of time. It’s loaded with veggies and or course all the goodness of real food. Making lasagna in a skillet is so much easier than the typical pan lasagna.

We’ve been making skillet lasagna for a while, so I’m super excited to be able to share this recipe with you! This skillet starts by sautéing up a bunch of veggies and then loading up the skillet with some seasonings, spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes, and lasagna noodles. Oh, and let’s not forget about the fact that it’s topped with fresh mozzarella! I use gluten-free lasagna noodles (brown rice noodles), but these can easily be replaced by whole wheat lasagna noodles if you prefer.

Side angle view of lasagna in skillet topped with melted mozzarella and basil leaves

When looking for spaghetti sauce and diced tomatoes make sure you are reading the ingredient list. Most spaghetti sauces and canned tomatoes contain unnecessary added ingredients like sugar and preservatives. My go-to for both is Organico Bello. Both their speghetti sauce and diced tomatoes contain only the ingredients you would use to make it from scratch. Especially the diced tomatoes… they contain, wait for it… just tomatoes! There are many other brands that contain real ingredients without added sugars or preservatives… you just need to read the ingredients. It’s a little harder to find organic diced tomatoes that contain just tomatoes, but they are out there!

If you make this recipe, please let me know what you think! Leave a comment below and/or share a photo on Instagram and mention @CleanPlateMama!

Skillet Vegetable Lasagna

Print Recipe
Serves: 6-8 Cooking Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 2 zucchinis, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 cups packed kale, stems removed
  • 1-10oz box lasagna noodles (gluten-free if needed)
  • 1 can (14oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 jar (24oz) spaghetti sauce
  • 8oz fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
  • fresh basil leaves for garnish

Instructions

1

Heat the olive oil in 12" skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and zucchini and cook until softened; about 5-8 minutes. Add garlic, dried basil, dried oregano, onion powder, salt, and kale and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes.

2

Break up half of the lasagna noodles and place over veggies. Pour half of the spaghetti sauce and half of the diced tomatoes over noodles. Break up the other half of the lasagna noodles and place on top of tomatoes and sauce. Pour remaining spaghetti sauce and diced tomatoes on top of the 2nd layer of lasagna noodles. Spread sauce around to ensure all noodles are covered.

3

Reduce heat to medium-low and cover skillet. Continue to cook for about 30 minutes, or until noodles are tender. About half way through cooking time stir the lasagna.

4

Once noodles are cooked, top the lasagna with mozzarella slices and recover skillet. Continue cooking over low heat for about 2-5 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Remove from heat and top with fresh basil.

5

Serve and enjoy!

 

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/skillet-vegetable-lasagna/feed/ 0 644
Whole Wheat Crepes with Strawberry Filling https://cleanplatemama.com/whole-wheat-crepes-with-strawberry-filling/ https://cleanplatemama.com/whole-wheat-crepes-with-strawberry-filling/#respond Sat, 24 Mar 2018 01:54:53 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=623 There are so many reasons to love crepes. They are easy to make, they are delicious, and they are oh so versatile. These crepes are made with whole wheat flour and have no added sugar. All ingredients are mixed right in a blender, so making the batter and cleaning up is a breeze!

There are many things you can do with crepes, but with these I am keeping them simple with a strawberry filling. I like to spread the filling inside the crepe so that I can roll or fold them and freeze them with the “toppings” already inside. Homemade freezer food is a staple in our house, so I do whatever I can to make food more freezer friendly. If you don’t want the filling, you can skip that part all together and just make the crepes. And I’m going to be honest here… my older daughter does not like them with the filling, so half the time we just make straight up crepes with just fresh fruit on the side or if I’m feeling extra generous we’ll add pure maple syrup for dipping. We’ve also rolled them up with peanut butter and they are just as delicious.

Whole Wheat Crepes

Let’s talk cooking the actual crepes. It may take a few times to get them just right, but I promise you’ll get the hang of it and will have perfect crepes in no time! When making crepes, I allow the batter to sit for about 10 minutes before cooking them. This let’s the ingredients soak together and produces better results. When cooking the crepes I recommend removing the pan from the heat and then pouring the batter on the pan and swirling around. This keeps the heat from cooking the crepes too fast and allows you to get the batter in a perfectly round crepe shape before they begin cooking too much.

Another reason I love these crepes is the low sugar content! I do not add any sweetener to the actual crepe. I actually think the natural sweetness from the milk is enough. But even with the filling, you are only getting 3 grams of added sugar per crepe. There is obviously more sugar in the recipe due to the strawberries and milk, but only 3 grams of added sugar, and that’s natural sugar (of course) from the honey. I love limiting sugar wherever I can and I don’t think you are sacrificing any flavor in this recipe by limiting the sugar. Next up though, I’m going to try a savory crepe… stay tuned!

Print Recipe
Serves: 8 Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • For the crepes:
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour (we use white whole wheat flour)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 tbsp. butter, melted. Plus additional butter for cooking.
  • For the filling:
  • 1.5 cups sliced frozen strawberries
  • 1/2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. corn starch
  • 2 tsp. water
  • 1.5 tablespoons honey

Instructions

1

Combine all of the crepe ingredients in a blender and blend until mixed well. Let sit for 10 minutes.

2

Heat an 8-10" frying pan over medium heat.

3

Add enough butter to lightly grease the pan. Once the butter has melted and the pan is hot, remove pan momentarily from the heat so you can add the batter.

4

Pour 1/4 cup batter into middle of pan. Tilt pan to evenly spread batter across the surface. Place pan back over heat (I find that by removing from the heat while adding the batter helps the batter to spread over the pan better). Cook for about 1 minute, or until batter is set. Using a spatula, flip crepe and cook for an additional minute on the other side, or until lightly brown and cooked through.

5

Repeat above step until all crepes have been made.

6

Next make the filling.

7

Add the strawberries to a small sauce pan over med-low heat. Cook until soft and mash down until most of the large pieces have been mashed. Add the lemon juice and honey.

8

In a small bowl, combine the corn starch and water. Add to strawberries.

9

Continue to cook for 5-10 minutes, or until sauce begins to thicken.

10

Remove from heat and let cool.

11

Spread strawberry sauce onto crepes and roll or fold crepe. Serve with additional strawberries and/or maple syrup.

Notes

I recommend using organic ingredients when possible. Especially dairy ingredients and the strawberries.

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/whole-wheat-crepes-with-strawberry-filling/feed/ 0 623
Creamy Chocolate Popsicles https://cleanplatemama.com/creamy-chocolate-popsicles/ https://cleanplatemama.com/creamy-chocolate-popsicles/#respond Fri, 16 Mar 2018 23:26:13 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=608 It’s supposed to be 50 degrees here in MN on Saturday, and after the brutal winter we’ve had it is going to feel like we are in the tropics. To prepare, I’ve whipped up these delicious creamy chocolate popsicles. They are dairy free, refined sugar free, and contain 4 simple ingredients.

These popsicles get their creamy goodness from the coconut milk. I use canned coconut milk when making popsicles.  I love canned coconut milk because it is thicker and creamier than the dairy milk alternative you find in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. Canned coconut milk typically contains just coconut milk and water. Some do contain a stabilizer, like guar gum, which is a naturally derived substance from the guar bean. And according to some quick research, guar gum is not harmful in moderation (though some may have sensitivities to it). When buying canned coconut milk, try to find non-BPA cans and don’t buy light coconut milk.

In typical fashion, I use cacao powder for the chocolate flavor, not cacoa powder. Yes, there is a difference. Cacao is made from cold-pressing the bean (think less processing), which keeps the enzymes and higher antioxidant content. Cocoa is treated with high temperatures, which diminishes the nutritional value and reduces the enzyme content. Cocao is a true superfood (one of the many reasons I love cocao) and is high in minerals like magnesium, iron, zinc, and calcium. I recommend you buy certified organic raw cocao to ensure you are getting purest, most antioxidant rich form and the greatest health benefits.

Creamy Chocolate Popsicles

You do not need to feel guilty about eating these or having your kids eat these on the regular. These are loaded with healthy fats, high in antioxidants, and are naturally sweetened.  This recipe makes enough for about 5 regular sized popsicles. In total, it makes about 1 1/2 cups of liquid, so pending your popsicle molds you may get one less, or one more. Give these a try and let me know what you think!

Creamy Chocolate Popsicles

Print Recipe
Serves: 5

Ingredients

  • 1 cup canned coconut milk (do not use the light variation of canned coconut milk)
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 2-3 tbsp. maple syrup (depending on how sweet you like it)

Instructions

1

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

2

Taste and add more maple syrup if you desire (I find anywhere between 2 and 3 tbsp. to be sweet enough).

3

Poor mixture into popsicle molds and place in freezer.

4

Freeze for about 5 hours, or until frozen.

5

Before eating, let sit in popsicle mold for about 5 minutes outside of freezer, or run under hot water. This softens up the popsicles a bit and I find that they taste better this way.

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/creamy-chocolate-popsicles/feed/ 0 608
Gluten-free Cinnamon Oat Muffins https://cleanplatemama.com/gluten-free-cinnamon-oat-muffins/ https://cleanplatemama.com/gluten-free-cinnamon-oat-muffins/#respond Sun, 18 Feb 2018 19:58:23 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=590 These cinnamon oat muffins have quickly become a favorite in our house! Since I have recently cut-out gluten, I have been exploring more with gluten-free baking. We love baked goods around here, so it’s a must that I can still eat muffins even though I’ve cut out gluten. And if made the right way, baked goods can actually be pretty healthy and you don’t need to feel guilty about eating them.

These are made with whole rolled oats and oat flour (both certified gluten-free). With the cinnamon flavor I was easily able to limit the sweetener in these muffins without sacrificing flavor. Each muffin contains only 6 grams of sugar (and of course I use maple syrup so it’s natural sugar). With our first batch of these we didn’t have any leftover to freeze, so I will for sure be doubling the batch from now on. These are great to have for breakfast, add to lunches, or have as a quick snack.

Cinnamon Oat Muffins Gluten-Free

 

This recipe makes 12 muffins. Store the leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days. If you don’ think you’ll eat them all in 3 days (you’d be surprised how fast they go), store the rest in the freezer and save for later. Here are some other of our favorite muffin recipes if you love muffins as much as we do.

Gluten-free Cinnamon Oat Muffins

Print Recipe
Serves: 12 Cooking Time: 25 min

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole rolled outs (certified gluten-free if needed)
  • 1.5 cups oat flour (certified gluten-free if needed)
  • 1.5 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1.5 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 cup whole milk, room temperature (or milk of choice)
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 eggs

Instructions

1

Preheat oven to 350.

2

Lightly grease a 12 piece muffin pan or line with paper liners and set aside.

3

In a large bowl, combine the oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

4

In a small bowl, mix the milk, maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla, eggs, and milk.

5

Poor the wet mixture into the flour mixture and mix until combined. Batter will be runny.

6

Evenly poor batter into the prepared muffin pan. Batter will almost fill each muffin cup.

7

Bake for 13-15 minutes, or until toothpick entered in center of muffin comes out clean.

8

Let cool and remove from pan.

9

Enjoy!

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/gluten-free-cinnamon-oat-muffins/feed/ 0 590
Whole Wheat Banana Bread Muffins https://cleanplatemama.com/whole-wheat-banana-bread-muffins/ https://cleanplatemama.com/whole-wheat-banana-bread-muffins/#respond Thu, 08 Feb 2018 22:04:01 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=580 I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again… we LOVE muffins. They pretty much work for any meal of the day and are great as a snack too. These banana bread muffins are a staple in our house. And the best part about them is that they are super easy to make. These are made with whole wheat flour, have simple ingredients, and are refined-sugar free. I’m pretty sure you need to give these a try.

These muffins will go fast. So if you’re feeling extra motivated I would double the batch so you have plenty for freezing. We always have a freezer stocked with healthy baked goods for easy and quick breakfasts or to add to lunches.

I have also used this same recipe to make banana bread. If you’d like to make banana bread, simply use a 9×5 loaf pan instead of a muffin pan and bake for 50-55 minutes at 350. When I make it as banana bread I will loosely tent the loaf of bread with tinfoil around 40 minutes to keep the top and edges from browning too much. Now you just need to decide if you want muffins or banana bread and then get it in the oven.

Whole Wheat Banana Bread Muffins

Print Recipe
Serves: 12 Cooking Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour (I use whole wheat white flour)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 very ripe bananas, mashed

Instructions

1

Preheat oven to 350.

2

Lightly grease a muffin pan or line it with muffin cups.

3

Mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl.

4

Make a well in the center of dry ingredients and add the coconut oil, maple syrup, eggs, and bananas. Mix until well combined.

5

Evenly pour the batter into 12 muffin cups.

6

Bake for 22-25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center of muffin comes out clean.

7

Enjoy!

Notes

If possible use eggs and maple syrup that are at room temperature. This will keep the coconut oil from solidifying when mixed together.

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/whole-wheat-banana-bread-muffins/feed/ 0 580
Coconut Oil; To Refine or Unrefine https://cleanplatemama.com/coconut-oil-to-refine-or-unrefine/ https://cleanplatemama.com/coconut-oil-to-refine-or-unrefine/#respond Thu, 01 Feb 2018 19:58:14 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=566 Every time I’m at the grocery store buying coconut oil I’m faced with essentially two options; refined and unrefined. Unrefined is always more expensive so it got me wondering, is it really better for you, or why the additional cost, and what’s the difference?

Lets’ start at the beginning. All coconut oil is derived from the meat of the coconut. The difference between refined and unrefined is the way in which the oil is extracted and processed. Both of them have their uses and advantages.

Unrefined coconut oil is often referred to as pure coconut oil. The oil is extracted from fresh coconut meat through either dry processing or wet processing and then is typically cold pressed leaving behind just the oil. Unrefined coconut oil has a distinct coconut flavor and keeps it’s coconut smell. Unrefined oil reaches it’s smoking point at 350 degrees F.

Refined coconut oil goes through more processing and will have less of a coconut flavor. It comes from the same coconut meat as unrefined, but the meat is dried first. Some refined coconut oils are bleached. However, quality sources don’t use bleach, chemicals, or solvents to refine their oils. When buying refined, make sure you know that natural processes were used to refine the oil (don’t just go for the cheapest version). Some companies may partially hydrogenate the oil as well, which means it will contain trans-fats. But there has to be a reason people buy it refined, right? Refined is great for cooking at high temperatures as it has a smoking point of 450 degrees F. And if you don’t love the taste of coconut, or just don’t want coconut flavor in the foods you’re making, then refined is the way to go. And don’t forget refined is less expensive, so that’s a win.

The good news is they both have numerous health benefits (as long as you’re buying quality refined oil) like antiviral, antibacterial, anticancer and immune-boosting effects. Unrefined coconut oil, however, is richer in phytonutrients (chemicals produced by plants; plants use phytonutrients to stay healthy. hint: they are good for us!) than refined coconut oil.

Tips:

  • Coconut oil melts at 76 degrees F, so if it’s summer, or you live in a warmer climate, you may notice your coconut oil is a little melty (where it was probably solid when you bought it). This is totally fine and doesn’t mean you can’t us it anymore.
  • When using melted coconut oil in recipes, try to ensure all other liquid ingredients (eggs, milk, etc.) are at room temperature. If not, the oil will turn into little solid clumps. It won’t ruin the recipe, but does make it easier to mix if all ingredients are room temperature.
  • You can replace coconut oil 1:1 in all recipes for butter or other types of oils.

For the majority of my cooking, I use refined coconut oil.  Here is the coconut oil that I use (it is steam refined so no chemicals or bleaching used!).

(picture from iStock photos)
]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/coconut-oil-to-refine-or-unrefine/feed/ 0 566
Classic Chili https://cleanplatemama.com/classic-chili/ https://cleanplatemama.com/classic-chili/#respond Mon, 22 Jan 2018 17:22:02 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=555 Its’ been downright frigid here in Minnesota lately and what is better to eat when you are constantly freezing than a nice, warm, hearty bowl of chili!? There is nothing fancy about this chili; just you’re straight up traditional chili. But it’s a classic comfort food and is just what you need on a cold winter day (or any day for that matter).

This chili is loaded with beans and veggies and does call for ground beef. But if you are a vegetarian, you can easily skip the ground beef and add an extra can of beans and increase the veggies. This chili has simple seasonings like garlic, oregano, chili powder, and cumin, but also has ground cloves which rounds out the flavor and makes it just right in my opinion. Like most chili recipes, this calls for canned tomatoes. Now canned tomatoes don’t really qualify as “clean” food in my books because most canned tomatoes contain additives like calcium chloride. Calcium chloride is a preservative added to a lot of canned goods to increase the firmness of the food and increase the saltiness without adding actual salt. While there is a lot of debate on whether or not calcium chloride is harmful to our health, it is a preservative and an additive that I don’t like in my food. But there is good news… you can buy canned tomatoes with one single ingredient: tomatoes! Whoop whoop! However, I’ve only seen these at natural grocery stores like Whole Foods. So, read your labels my friends and try to find canned tomatoes that are just that, tomatoes. If not, don’t sweat it… 80/20, right!?

Classic Chili

While chili is definitely a seasonal meal in our house, it’s one we make a lot. And I usually double the recipes because chili is the perfect food for freezing and creates an easy meal right out of the freezer for nights when cooking is just not looking good! If you love chili like we do, check out my chicken corn chili and vegetarian chili too.

 

Classic Chili

Print Recipe
Serves: 6 Cooking Time: 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 green peppers, chopped
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. chili powder
  • 1.5 tbsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained
  • 1 can pinto beans, drained
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp. honey

Instructions

1

In a medium frying pan cook the ground beef over medium heat until browned. Drain access liquid and set beef aside.

2

While meat is cooking, add onion, green peppers, zucchini, garlic, and olive oil to a medium to large stock pot. Cook over medium heat until veggies begin to soften. This should take about 7 minutes. Add chili powder, ground cumin, oregano, cloves, and salt. Continue cooking for an additional 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.

3

Turn heat to medium low and add the cooked beef, tomatoes, beans, water, bay leaves, and honey to stock pot. Stir until combined. Simmer for at least 30 minutes.

4

Serve with your choice of toppings. I suggest green onion, avocado, cheese, and/or sour cream.

5

Enjoy!

Notes

You could use 2 cans of kidney or pinto beans instead of using both, but I like the variety. If you like you're chili extra thick, skip the water, but I find it to be a little too thick without the addition of the water. Recommend organic ingredients where possible.

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/classic-chili/feed/ 0 555
Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter Balls https://cleanplatemama.com/chocolate-coconut-peanut-butter-balls/ https://cleanplatemama.com/chocolate-coconut-peanut-butter-balls/#respond Sun, 14 Jan 2018 20:24:46 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=546 This variation of peanut butter balls is one of my all time favorites! The cocao and coconut gives this favorite snack of ours a nice change! There isn’t an overwhelming coconut flavor, so if coconut isn’t your thing, I would say to give them a try anyway and see what you think. I wasn’t so sure about the coconut at first and how my girls would react, but to my surprise they loved the slight coconut flavor these offer… and let’s be honest, they just look pretty being rolled in coconut.

These start with a base of peanut butter, but then I added in cacao powder, which helps to thicken the peanut butter and create a thicker/stickier base for the balls. Make sure you are using cacao as opposed to cocoa powder too! Wait, what… there is a difference between those you may be asking!? Yes, there is a huge difference between cocao and cocoa, and it’s not just the spelling. I’ll keep it high level, but essentially they are both derived from the same place, the cocao bean, however how they are processed is very different. Cocao is made from cold-pressing the bean (think less processing), which keeps the enzymes and higher antioxidant content. Cocoa is treated with high temperatures, which diminishes the nutritional value and reduces the enzyme content. Cocao is a true superfood (one of the many reasons I love cocao) which is high in minerals like magnesium, iron, zinc, and calcium. I recommend you buy certified organic raw cocao to ensure you are getting purest, most antioxidant rich form and the greatest health benefits.

So, these little balls of joy are packed with protein (peanut butter & chia seeds), fiber (oats & chia seeds), antioxidants and minerals (cocao), and contain just the right amount of sweetness to make this a little treat, the perfect snack, or a great addition to my kids’ lunches!

Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter Balls

Print Recipe
Serves: 24 Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 1/3 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup cocao powder
  • 2 1/4 cups gluten-free oats
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut; divided

Instructions

1

Mix the peanut butter, honey, and cocao powder in small bowl.

2

Mix the oats, chia seeds, and 1/4 cup of the shredded coconut in large bowl.

3

Combine the peanut butter mix with oat mix in large bowl and mix until all of the oats are coated and the mixture is well blended.

4

Place the remaining 1/4 cup coconut in small bowl. Roll the oat mixture into approximately 1" balls and roll in shredded coconut.

5

Store in the refrigerator.

6

Enjoy!

Notes

These are best stored in the refrigerator and will stay fresh for up to 5 days. Recommend using organic ingredients wherever possible.

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/chocolate-coconut-peanut-butter-balls/feed/ 0 546
Easy Oat and Honey Granola https://cleanplatemama.com/easy-oat-and-honey-granola/ https://cleanplatemama.com/easy-oat-and-honey-granola/#respond Thu, 28 Dec 2017 02:21:06 +0000 https://cleanplatemama.com/?p=534 This is one of the easiest homemade granolas you can make and it tastes great! It is so much better for you than the typical grocery store granolas which usually contain unhealthy fats and oils and are loaded with refined sugars. If you’ve never made granola you’ve got to try it… you may never go back to store bought again!

When making granola, make sure you are using pure rolled oats (not instant/quick-cooking). For one, they are more nutritious and two, you will get the perfect texture to your granola. This recipe calls for sliced almonds and dried apricots, but feel free to use any sort of nut or dried fruit. But make sure to use dried fruit that does not contain any added sugars (this keeps it clean and natural). I kept this recipe simple by just using almonds and dried apricots and it turns out perfect. The almonds, dried apricots, and cinnamon are the perfect match to the sweet honey flavor of the granola.

Honey Granola

This recipe is enough for about 12 servings. It keeps well in an airtight container for about 1 week so a large batch is nice to have on hand… and it goes quickly! If that feels like a lot for you, simply cut the recipe in half. I would hate for any of this delicious granola to go to waste. We eat this as either a snack, top yogurt or oatmeal with it, and have even topped ice cream with it. My favorite is adding it to oatmeal because it gives the oatmeal a perfectly sweet crunch. What will you do with your granola?

Easy Oat and Honey Granola

Print Recipe
Serves: 12 Cooking Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 cups rolled oats (gluten-free if needed)
  • 1 1/2 cups raw sliced almonds
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 1/2 cups dried apricots, chopped

Instructions

1

Preheat oven to 250 and line a baking pan with parchment paper.

2

Mix oats, almonds, shredded coconut, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl.

3

In a separate bowl, combine the vanilla, coconut oil, and honey.

4

Poor wet mixture into bowl with oats and mix until well combined.

5

Evenly spread mixture onto the lined baking pan.

6

Bake for 60 minutes, stirring the granola every 20 minutes.

7

Let cool slightly and then mix in the dried fruit. If you like your granola chunky, let cool on baking sheet completely and then mix in dried fruit. Allowing granola to completely cool before mixing will keep some granola chunks in the mix.

8

Store in an airtight container and enjoy!

Notes

For the apricots, I buy dried organic apricots whole and then chop them up while the granola is cooking. I typically will use refined coconut oil when making granola.

 

]]>
https://cleanplatemama.com/easy-oat-and-honey-granola/feed/ 0 534