Healthy-ish Dark Chocolate Brownies
I’m not the biggest sweets person…but I LOVE a good brownie. These aren’t something I would recommend eating every single day but they are a healthier option for all of you chocolate lovers out there. These are also perfect for whipping up with your kiddos on the weekends. I subbed in oat flour, coconut sugar, dark chocolate + cacao for a superfood boost + healthy-ish version of this indulgent treat. The flax egg is of course optional.
Makes about 10 – 12 brownies
- 160 grams of oat flour
- 1 cup unsalted organic butter, 2 sticks
- 1 cups dark chocolate chips
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 flax eggs (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed meal w/ 3 tablespoons of water) OR 2 eggs
- ⅓ cup cacao powder
- Nonstick cooking spray or oil, for greasing
Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Add the butter + dark chocolate chips to a large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for a minute or two until melted, then let sit for 3 minutes before whisking together. Add coconut + brown sugars, vanilla, + salt. Whisk to combine. Whisk in flax eggs (or eggs) until fully combined. *Be sure to let the flax egg sit for at least 15 minutes before adding to the batter otherwise your brownies will be crumbly.
Add flour + cacao powder into the bowl + fold in with a spatula. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan (or pan of similar size) + spread the batter evenly in the pan. Bake for about 40 minutes (the brownies may still look loose until cooled). Let cool completely before cutting.
Homemade Oat Milk
This oat milk is SO easy + insanely cost effective. You really just need natural rolled oats + water. I’ve listed my suggested add ins as well. Be sure to use very cold water so your milk doesn’t get a gelatinous texture.
Makes about 12-16 ounces
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 3 cups of very cold water
- A few dashes of cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon organic maple syrup
Other possible add ins…
- 1-2 tablespoons of cacao for a chocolate milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract for a vanilla milk
- Extra maple syrup or a date if you want a sweeter milk
Blend the first four ingredients (+ any add ins) for about 30 seconds. You’ll need to strain well through a wire strainer or nut/cheese cloth. If using a strainer like I do, you will need to strain several times. You’ll also need to shake up your milk a bit before using as some settling is normal. You can store for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. Not the best for heating (e.g. hot chocolate) as it can again, become a bit gelatinous.
Pesto is one of my favorite things to make. It’s simple, versatile in ingredients as well as what you can use it for. Pesto is wonderful in pastas of course, but can also be used to top off proteins, swirled in soups, mixed in salads, or simply used as a dip for your favorite breads, chips, or crudités. I make a lot of different pestos but this one made with super healthy kale may be my best yet. This is also a great way to sneak in extra veggies for the kiddos.
Makes about 1 1/2 cups
- 2 cups fresh kale, packed, torn, stems removed (I love using tuscan kale for this but any will do)
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves, packed
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/3 cup nutritional yeast (vegan) or parmesan
- 2/3 cup pine nuts
- The juice of half a lemon
- Olive oil to blend
- S + P to taste
Using a food processor, blend the first 6 ingredients. Slowly add olive oil until you have your preferred consistency (about 1/2 cup). Season with S+P to taste.
Vegan “Cream” of Mushroom Soup
I love mushrooms. They are literally one of my favorite foods. This soup has SO much flavor due to the fresh herbs + coconut milk. I would have never thought to add coconut milk to a mushroom soup but the flavor is truly perfection. I like to serve this with fresh bread and/or a green salad.
Makes about 4 servings
- 1 x 10 ounce package of white mushrooms, sliced
- 1 x 10 ounce package of baby bellas, sliced
- 1 medium onion, small dice
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, rough chopped
- 1 13.5 ounce can full fat coconut milk
- A heaping T of flour
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 1 t dried oregano
- 1 t fresh thyme (about 4 sprigs)
- 1 tablespoon vegan butter
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- Olive oil
- S+P to taste (season well)
In a large saucepan add butter + oil over medium heat. Add garlic, shallot + onion. Season with S+P, add oregano + thyme. Cook for a few minutes until fragrant.
Add mushrooms + soy sauce. Cook covered for about 10 mins so the mushrooms can release their water.
Sprinkle w/ flour + stir to thicken. Pour in wine. Give it one more good stir + simmer for another 10 mins.
Pour in coconut milk + stir well. Taste. Season as needed. Allow this to cook for a few minutes to let the flavors meld. Remove from heat. Using a hand blender, blend about 3/4 of the soup smooth. Do a final taste + season as needed.
Vegan “Cream” of Broccoli Soup
You would never in a million years know this soup did not contain cream. It’s super creamy + the nutritional yeast + flour gives this soup the most incredible texture. The recipe also has a boat load of fresh broccoli so you know you’re getting those greens in.
Makes about 4 servings
- 5 cups of raw broccoli, chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 cups vegetable broth or stock
- 1 teaspoon parsley
- ½ c of nutritional yeast
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 6 ounces of full fat coconut milk
Cook garlic + onion with a little olive oil over medium heat until fragrant. Add broccoli, broth, parsley, nutritional yeast, S+P. Bring to a boil. Sprinkle flour over the broccoli + stir to combine while the pot is boiling. Reduce heat to simmer until broccoli is tender + the mixture has thickened.
Turn off heat. Mix in your coconut milk. Using a hand blender, mix to your desired consistency (I like to keep this one a little chunky). Season again with S+P and enjoy with crusty bread or croutons!
I’m a big smoothie gal…even more so now that I have a toddler + I’m constantly trying to sneak in all the veggies. This smoothie is kid friendly + filling enough for a solid breakfast. I drink this or a fresh green juice every morning. To add extra sweetness, a tablespoon of raw honey or maple syrup (or one date!) will do the trick.
1 – 16-20 oz serving
- 1 ripe banana
- 1/2 ripe avocado
- 1 cup favorite frozen fruit (I like to use mixed berries and mango)
- 1 cup raw spinach, packed
- Juice from 1 whole lemon
- 1 heaping tablespoon of vanilla almond milk yogurt
- 1 scoop green juice powder of choice (I use Sakara Life or Amazing Grass)
- Enough coconut water or regular water to blend
- *1 inch piece of raw ginger (I usually only add this in the winter + when I’m not sharing with Tristan)
Blend all ingredients until very smooth + enjoy!
Balsamic Avocado Mushroom Toast
This recipe was created from my love for both mushrooms + traditional avocado toast. The key here is the tahini + garlic I use in the avo spread. This little toast has so much flavor + is perfect for a quick lunch or hearty snack.
Makes 2 Toasts
- 1 cup of mushrooms of choice
- ½ ripe avocado
- 1 heaping tablespoon of tahini
- Squeeze of ½ a lemon
- 1 clove of garlic, minced (more or less depending on preference)
- 2 slices of bread of choice (I like Ezekiel and Dave’s Killer)
- Olive oil +/or vegan butter
- 1 teaspoon of really good balsamic vinegar for finishing
Brown your mushrooms on both sides over medium heat using a little olive oil +/or a 1 teaspoon of vegan butter.
Using a fork, smash your avocado until smooth. Mix in your lemon juice, tahini, garlic, + S+P to taste. Toast or grill your bread to your liking. Spread your avocado mixture evenly over both slices. Top with mushrooms + drizzle in your balsamic. Eat immediately.
Creamy Vegan Avocado Pesto
I’ve been making this recipe forever. It was one of the first recipes I posted on my first blog over 8 years ago. With only a handful of ingredients, most of which are pantry staples, this is one of my weekly go-tos.
About 4 servings
- 1 ripe avocado, pitted, peeled and diced
- 1 c fresh basil leaves, packed
- 1/3 c pine nuts
- 4 cloves garlic
- Juice of 1 organic lemon
- 4 T extra virgin olive oil
- Kosher or sea salt and pepper to taste ( have a good amount of salt on hand )
- Water as needed
- 2 c fresh, organic spinach, packed
- 16 oz pasta of choice, cooked
(You can use gluten-free noodles as well. We love thick fettuccine noodles!)
- 1 organic tomato, diced
Combine the first 4 ingredients in a food processor or blender. With the machine running, stream in lemon juice, 3 T olive oil and water as needed to achieve a smooth and creamy pesto. Season with salt (do NOT be shy) & pepper.
In a large pan, heat the remaining 1 T of olive oil and sauté 2 cups of spinach until just wilted. Add pesto and cooked pasta. Toss well. Garnish with diced tomatoes. If you’re not going the vegan route, feel free to throw in some grated parmesan or fresh mozzarella cheese.
Tomato-Garlic Confit (inspired by Food 52)
I love this recipe. It’s definitely on the more indulgent side, but so savory and warming and wonderful. This recipe is straight from Food52 with a few slight tweaks that I found helpful. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as my family + I do!
About 4 servings
- 1 pound sweet cherry tomatoes
- 1 handful peeled garlic
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pound potato gnocchi (store-bought or homemade)
- 1 piece burrata (or 4 small pieces)
- Handful of fresh basil, chopped
- A few pinches of flaky salt
For the tomato-garlic confit: Add sweet cherry tomatoes of choice + a very generous handful of peeled garlic cloves to a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cover in olive oil until everything is about half submerged. Cook over the lowest possible heat until the tomatoes begin to burst + the garlic is soft and spreadable, about 20-40 minutes, depending on the strength of your burner. Watch it closely—you want to see a bubble or two in the oil, but if it begins to simmer, layer another pot or pan underneath to diffuse the heat. (Cooled confit can be stored, submerged in its oil, in an air-tight container in the refrigerator. Note that it is not seasoned so make sure to sprinkle with salt before eating!)
For the gnocchi: Boil homemade or store-bought potato gnocchi in well-salted water until they float. Meanwhile, add a few glugs of the tomato confit oil to a large non-stick skillet + heat over medium-high. Transfer the gnocchi from the cooking water with a slotted spoon to the hot oil + arrange in a single layer. Cook undisturbed until golden + crisp, about 3 minutes, then flip + repeat. Transfer from the pan to a paper towel-lined plate + taste for seasoning—a sprinkle of salt on top while they’re still warm may be necessary. DO NOT OVER CROWD THE GNOCCHIS! You want them to get nice and browned and crispy.
For serving: Arrange gnocchi, burrata, + tomato-garlic confit on a serving plate. Top with a drizzle of confit oil, flaky salt, cracked black pepper + basil. Enjoy immediately!
Vegan Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
Soups can pack a nutritionally dense punch, they’re easy to make, + oftentimes you can throw them together with items in your pantry. This one is creamy, vegan, + has a hint of sweetness with the squash. This recipe is wonderful served with garlic toast or homemade croutons. I’ve also poured this soup over roasted veggies. So good.
Makes about 4 servings
- 1 whole butternut squash, peeled + medium dice
- 2 cups vegetable broth or stock
- 1/2 medium onion, chopped
- 4 cloves of fresh garlic, roughly chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon of paprika
- 1 teaspoon of cumin
- 1 teaspoon of fresh rosemary, chopped
- 6 ounces of full fat canned coconut milk
Preheat your oven to 400. Coat your squash in olive oil, S+P, + the chopped fresh rosemary. Roast for about 30 minutes until tender.
Add chopped garlic + onion to a large pot with a little olive oil. Add paprika + cumin. Cook over medium heat for a minute or two until fragrant. Add stock + bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Remove bay leaf, turn off heat, + cover to keep warm.
Add squash to the stock mixture. Season with S+P to taste (don’t be shy!). Using a hand blender, blend to desired consistency (for this soup, I like it very creamy + almost completely blended). Stir in coconut milk. Serve hot.