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Gluten-Free Banana Muffins with Streusel Topping

Sometimes we miss the comfort of baked goods, and want something warm and yummy yet gluten free! I also strive to keep the carbs on the lower side, just to help maintain weight loss goals. This recipe uses a base of coconut flour, and the original recipe was found at the Tropical Traditions website. I altered it a little and added a streusel topping. Why? Well, because who doesn’t love streusel on a muffin?! MMMMM. I like this recipe as it stands, but my hubby thought they could be a little sweeter. If you prefer a sweeter muffin, feel free to increase the honey or Truvia to your tastes. It seems like a lot of ingredients, but it actually went together pretty quickly for me. The coconut flour is much more absorbent than other flours, which has to be taken into consideration if you want to alter the recipe for your own needs. Next time I make these, I will likely add a dash of cinnamon and maybe nutmeg, (or even cocoa!) but we thought they were really tasty just like this!

Banana Muffins with Streusel Topping

Muffins:

  • 1 C coconut flour
  • 2 Tb buckwheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 Tb butter, melted
  • 2 Tb coconut oil, melted
  • 3/4 C milk
  • 1/2 C buttermilk
  • 3 Tb honey
  • 1 Tb granulated Truvia
  • 1 Tb vanilla
  • 2 mashed ripe bananas

Streusel Topping (same as raspberry streusel bars)

  • 1/4 C butter, softened
  • 1/4 C almond flour
  • 2 Tb erythritol
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 C walnuts
  • 1/2 C shredded coconut (unsweetened)
  • 1 egg white, beaten

To make the muffins: Heat oven to 350. Beat the eggs in a large bowl, then add the melted butter, coconut oil, milk, buttermilk, honey, vanilla and Truvia. Combine well. In a medium bowl, combine coconut flour, buckwheat flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. (I use a whisk to combine and be sure the ingredients are evenly distributed.) Slowly add the dry ingredients into the egg mixture until combined. Add bananas and mix. Spoon batter evenly between 12 lined muffin cups. Top with streusel (below), and bake for 20 minutes or until set.

To make the streusel: Combine almond flour, walnuts, erthyritol and coconut in a food processor until combined but not fine. Add the butter and process until it begins to clump together. Brush the tops of muffins with the egg white (to help the streusel stick to the muffins, as the batter is dryer than a typical muffin.) Top with streusel and pat down lightly.

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Warm Veggie Salad with Grilled Chicken

If you are like me, you eat plenty of salads, right? I know we love our greens and the health benefits that come with them, but I also get in salad “ruts” sometimes where I know I should eat them, but I also know just how they will taste, and get a little bored with the concept.

This morning I didn’t feel like eggs or a smoothie for breakfast, and decided to have a salad instead, so I started looking through the fridge to see what I had on hand. I knew there was leftover orange ginger grilled chicken breast that I wanted to use, and of course greens. I also had fresh crimini mushrooms, which i love, but the problem is that I only like cooked mushrooms, not raw ones. Cooking the mushrooms led to this delicious and light warm salad… for a vegetarian version, simply omit the chicken and cheese and use coconut oil to saute veggies. Having a late breakfast in the backyard listening to the birds singing up a storm was a refreshing start to my day, but I don’t think I will be hungry at lunch time!

Warm Veggie Salad with Grilled Chicken

  • 1/2 grilled chicken breast, cut up
  • 1 large leaf of napa cabbage
  • handful of fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 carrot, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 stalk celery, thinly sliced
  • handful of crimini musrooms, diced
  • butter or coconut oil to saute veggies
  • sprinkling of shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 lime, juiced

Saute carrot, celery and mushrooms in butter for a few minutes, cooking lightly and maintaining crispness. Add grilled chicken and warm through, remove from heat. Lay the napa down as a base for the salad, either whole for a wrap, or chopped. Add spinach over napa. Top with veggies and then cheese. Squeeze lime over the top and serve immediately.

 

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Almond Buckwheat Buttermilk Pancakes (Gluten Free) with Berry Sauce

Almond Buckwheat Buttermilk Pancakes served with Berry Sauce

Since we have gone gluten free, I have been keeping my eyes open for a good buckwheat pancake recipe that my family would enjoy, as buckwheat pancakes were always our favorite! I also wanted the recipe to be lower carb so that we could eat it without guilt. I have seen lots of recipes that looked yummy, and decided to combine and tweak to come up with one that would satisfy our dietary choices. This one combines buckwheat flour with almond flour (lower carb, not no carb), and I have to say, the boys RAVED about it! It was so gratifying to hear my teenager telling me that these were the “best pancakes ever!” (I plan to make another batch soon for the freezer so that he can pop them in the toaster in the morning.) I can’t guarantee you will feel the same way, but I do hope you enjoy!

Almond Buckwheat Buttermilk Pancakes

  • 1/2 C almond flour
  • 1/2 C buckwheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp Truvia
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 C plus 2 Tb  buttermilk
  • butter or oil to grease griddle

Heat griddle to 325 degrees. Combine all dry ingredients in a food processor and pulse until mixed completely. Add wet ingredients and blend. When griddle is hot, grease with butter and spoon batter into smallish pancakes. (I was able to make 8.) Cook several minutes until the first side appears to be done and is starting to brown at the edges. (My pancakes did not get the traditional bubbles before flipping.) Flip and cook another minute or so. Serve with butter and berry sauce.

Berry Sauce

  • 1/3 C reduced sugar raspberry preserves
  • 1/4 C fresh or frozen blueberries

Heat ingredients together until the blueberries begin to soften. Serve over pancakes.

 

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Garlic Tomato Scrambled Eggs with Garden Herbs (Low carb, Gluten free)

Garlic Tomato Scrambled Eggs with Garden Herbs

 

GOOD MORNING SUNSHINE!!! Just a quick breakfast post for Tuesday morning…

I still struggle with eating a morning meal most days, and I know it’s important. It’s funny, I only realized I was gluten intolerant this year, but my go-to has always been an “Eggy” breakfast. I didn’t know why, but I always felt terrible if I ate waffles, pancakes, doughnuts, or cereal, so I didn’t… but those are generally the most convenient, so I had a bad habit of skipping it entirely.

Today I wanted eggs, but was craving more flavor:

  1. Saute 1 clove garlic, finely diced, in 1 tsp butter until tender (or browned if you like the taste)
  2. Add 1/2 tomato, finely diced, saute a minute more
  3. Add 2 organic eggs scrambled with 1 TB heavy cream
  4. Scramble eggs until nearly cooked
  5. Add 1 oz shredded white sharp cheddar, toss to melt
  6. Plate the eggs and top with your choice of fresh garden herbs
    Today I used fresh chives and oregano.

Really quick, delicious, low carb and gluten free. The garlic and tomato really add depth of flavor, and choosing sharp cheddar adds a nice zing to the balance. Fresh herbs are great with eggs, and having a few in the garden or pots will definitely add a nice dimension to your cooking. The earliest herbs in my garden are chives, oregano, sage and thyme since they are perennials and come back every year. It always takes some patience waiting for the tender annual basil to get big enough that it won’t die from me stripping off the leaves too soon, 😉 but basil is a fabulous complement to eggs, tomato and garlic as well.

 

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Smoothie Sailing into the Weekend!

Strawberries, Kefir, celery, apple and blackberries make a delicious light smoothie.

Just a quick breakfast post to start a weekend of light and healthy eating! We have always been fans of the smoothie at our house, with varying degrees of healthfulness (ice cream can be in a smoothie, right??), and since changing our eating style, I am going to be exploring raw food smoothies as a way to boost energy and health.

This particular mixture was based on making my son a strawberry smoothie for breakfast, but I wanted to add a few other things in there to help with nutrients and energy. This is not low carb with the fruits that are included, but strawberries and blackberries are among the healthiest fruits to eat on a low carb diet, so I’m not feeling too guilty! 

Saturday Breakfast Smoothie

  • 1 C fresh strawberries
  • 1 golden delicious apple, peeled and cored
  • 1 stalk celery, ribs removed
  • handful of frozen blackberries
  • 1/2 C Kefir
  • 1/4 C low sugar cranberry pomegranate juice
  • 4 ice cubes
  • 1 Tb honey

I started by blending the strawberries, apple and celery in my Ninja with the kefir until fairly smooth, then added all other ingredients except the honey. I blended this a good bit longer than usual to make sure that it was indeed, very smooth. I poured my glass without any honey or sweetener, but then added the honey into the remainder for my son, to help him ease a sore throat. 2 servings.

I know this is probably a lightweight in the smoothie category, and I do plan to explore the “green smoothies” in the future. It wasn’t until his drink was half gone that I told my son that there was celery in it, he had NO idea. He thought it was pretty cool, yay! Just wait til he starts drinking spinach, hehe.

 

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Quick Eggy Breakfast

Broccoli Mushroom Scramble

Yesterday was a tough day… NO energy, extreme fatigue, ugh! It made me wonder whether I had accidentally ingested some gluten because “brain fog” is an understatement to how I was feeling! Without body aches and pains though, I had to think it was something else. One thing about going off gluten and eating low carb, is that my appetite isn’t what it once was, and I sometimes forget to eat… so last night my hubby busted me for not having breakfast and snacks during the day. It’s harder to eat when you’re not hungry!

Today I decided to make sure I had a nice dose of protein to start my day, along with a few mineral-rich veggies tossed in to round things out. I can’t say yet whether it will get my energy back on track, but I am hoping so!

What do you do differently when you notice that you are fatigued?
Does it help you to address it with diet?
Do you have any tips or tricks to share? I would love to hear them!!!

Broccoli Mushroom Scramble

  • 1 Tb olive oil or butter
  • 3 small stalks baby broccoli
  • 1/4 C sliced crimini mushrooms
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tb cream
  • 2 Tb sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 roma tomato, sliced

Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat, and saute broccoli, mushrooms and garlic gently for a couple minutes, until broccoli is tender. Beat eggs with cream and add to pan, scrambling just like normal scrambled eggs. When the eggs are almost done, add the cheese and transfer to a plate along with the sliced tomatoes.

 

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Recipe: In LOVE with Almond Flour, and a Gluten-Free Raspberry Streusel Bar!

Only lightly sweet, these bars are great as dessert or a breakfast bar.

Soooo, I have been gluten-free for just over a month now (applause, woooohoooo), and am getting the hang of using nuts flours. The almond flour from Nuts.com is simply one of the best things in my cupboard these days! I finally ordered a 5lb bag instead of a couple 1lb bags here and there. I know it’s much more expensive than standard flour, but we aren’t eating packaged, processed foods, so wholesome ingredients sort of take the place of those unhealthy items in our grocery budget.We also rarely go out to eat because there are so few gluten-free choices locally, so that also helps with the grocery expense.

I have steered clear of high carb treats, but we still have an itch for a buttery crust or a fruity zing every once in awhile, and these Raspberry Streusel Bars from Elana’s blog are a perfect answer! I changed the recipe slightly because we aren’t vegan (I used some real butter), and the fruit spread I had wasn’t sugar-free, so I used half as much and added frozen blackberries to the fruit layer. I used some erythritol sweetener instead of xylitol because the latter is poisonous to dogs, so I don’t have it in my house. With or without my changes, these are amazingly good! The boys raved, I raved, and I will have to make more soon because they were inhaled at breakfast this morning! If you are going totally without carbs, the fruit spread in this might be a stopper, but you could make or purchase a low sugar fruit spread in its place. I plan to fiddle with this recipe in the future, using the base and topping as is, and changing up the fillings, to find a very low carb balance that will still be satisfying. For now, enjoy this recipe!

Gluten-Free Raspberry Streusel Bars

Crust:

  • 2C blanched almond flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 2T coconut oil (or butter)
  • 1T vanilla extract
  • 1T water
  • 1 packet Truvia (optional)

Filling:

  • 1/2C raspberry fruit spread
  • 1/2C frozen blackberries, or raspberries, roughly chopped

Topping:

  • 1/4C butter (or coconut oil)
  • 1/4C blanched almond flour
  • 2T erythritol
  • couple pinches of salt
  • 1C walnuts
  • 1/2C unsweetened coconut flakes

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, combine all crust ingredients together and process until incorporated. (I lined a 9×9″ square pan with baking parchment to make removal of the bars easier, but you can also use an unlined Pyrex baking dish as Elana does.) Press into baking dish evenly, and bake for 12 minutes.

Layer fruit spread evenly over warm crust, and top with chopped berries.

In food processor, combine butter, almond flour, sweetener and salt, and process until smooth and creamy. Add walnuts and coconut and process a bit more, but not so much that the nuts break down and lose texture. Sprinkle topping mixture over fruit layer, pressing topping down a little, and bake for 15 minutes.

Let cool slightly on counter top, then refrigerate for 2 hours before serving to allow the bars to firm up.

 

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