Review: Nature’s Path Organic Crunchy Granola Bars

brg-5pk-crb-pchoc-us-a1l1I woke up one day earlier this week with a HUGE craving for one of those crunchy peanut butter granola bars (that came in a pack of two) that I always enjoyed as a kid. No idea where it came from, but the craving was strong.

I hunted around at the store to see if there was anything that was similar, sans gluten. I found something! Nature’s Path Organic makes a line of the crunch granola bars. Even more awesome, is they have a peanut butter one too! They are non-gmo (which of course I love!) and they dont contain any wheat. Because some are labelled as “gluten free” and some aren’t (these ones arent) I read the ingredients list over and over again just to be sure but they seem good to go! I don’t seen any gluten in there!

I know oats are a hit or miss for some people avoiding gluten but they seem to be okay for me.

I have tried the peanut choco flavour as well as the apple pie chia flavour and both are awesome! I hear the pumpkin pie one is really great too, and since its almost fall- I think that one will be making an appearance in my kitchen soon.

Craving satisfied.

Avocado, the World’s Most Perfect Gluten Free Food

avocado health benefits

Did You Know that the avocado has been called the world’s most perfect food and has many health benefits? It has achieved this distinction because many nutritionists claim it not only contains everything a person needs to survive but it has also been found to contribute to the prevention and control of Alzheimer’s, cancer, heart disease, diabetes and other health conditions.

The avocado is a high-fiber, gluten-free food that provides nearly 20 essential nutrients, including fiber, is rich in healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (such as omega-3 fatty acids), vitamins A, C, D, E, K and the B vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, biotin, vitamin B-6, vitamin B-12 and folate) — as well as potassium.

Foods naturally rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as avocados, are widely acknowledged as the secret to a healthy heart, a brilliant brain and eagle eyes.

Avocados are readily available in most grocery stores.They are pear shaped and green in colour when unripe and they turn a blackish green and are softer to the touch,when ripe.If you buy them in the green state they will ripen on your counter top or placed in a paper bag in a few days.

 Here are some ways I incorporate avocados into my gluten free diet.

-The obvious is guacamole. There are many recipes online and  I serve it with gluten free corn chips

-You can add some avocado to your morning fruit smoothie.

-My favourite way is to simply scoop out the avocado and sprinkle salt and lime juice on it

-You can slice and add to sandwiches like a toasted bacon and tomato.(Chelsey’s favourite)

– And for a sweet treat try this chocolate avocado pudding.You won’t be able to tell it’s in there so your kids or you won’t know you are eating something healthy.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding

Serves 3

Ingredients

  • 2 cups avocado (about 2 medium avocados)
  • 1 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla

Optional: To make it a bit lighter (as in milk chocolate pudding) or to thin it out a bit, add about 2 or 3 tablespoons of milk or dairy free almond or other kind and blend well.

  1. Add all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and whirl until it is creamy and fully blended. Scrape the sides to get all the cocoa powder in the pudding.
  2. Chill for 30 minutes and then eat!

Recipe: Chocolate Macarons

macarons

Macarons.
I’ve never had one before but I see my foodie friends rave about them on Twitter. They are supposedly crunchy on the outside, and chewy on the inside. Two wonderful shells filled with buttercream delight.

I knew that there were gluten free recipes out there as they are made primarily with almond meal/flour. I hesitated in making them because I watch a lot of cooking shows and its always this huge crazy deal to attempt making French macarons. Hard to perfect apparently

Well, this recipe is one I came across in Pinterest, and it used ingredients I already had in the house. So one night, when hubby was at work I decided to try em.

To be honest, they were one of the easiest cookies I’ve ever made. And to me, they were perfect. Crunchy on the outside, and chewy on the inside. Two wonderful shells filled with vanilla buttercream delight.

My size was off (too big) and the shape wasn’t perfect (each shell has a point on it) but the most important part (so I read) was that the shells had feet (the ridge around the bottom)- which they did.

I think EVERYONE should try making macarons! I’m now addicted and will be making them often, different flavours, different fillings. I CANT WAIT FOR MORE!

Macarons:
http://www.onlyglutenfreebaking.com/1/post/2012/12/chocolate-macarons-naturally-gluten-free.html

Buttercream:
I made this up myself. I dislike most of the buttercream recipes out there so I just mixed up butter and sugar and vanilla until it tasted good to me. Not too sweet, more on the buttery side. MMM…..

Review: Glutino Wafer Cookies

Glutino Chocolate Waffer-2This might be the shortest blog post ever. All I want to tell you is that these cookies are SO good. I you’re a cookie monster like me, you should go buy these right now.

For $4 (I found them at superstore) you get a bunch of sweet, flaky wafers. They are a heavenly snack. They come in vanilla and chocolate, chocolate and chocolate and lemon.

I dare you to eat less than 6 😛

RECIPE: Gluten Free Cheesecake Brownies

cheesecake brownie

Easter long weekend was awesome. We had 2 dinners (and a 3rd one tonight)

I did quite alot of baking this weekend. Being gluten free, dessert is always tricky for someone else to prepare who isnt experienced in gfree baking. So I always (happily) take on that task.

For Good Friday dinner I made raspberry, chocolate, and earl grey mini cheesescakes with a girlfriend of mine (we had a blast baking all morning) Easter Sunday I made cheesecake brownies and tonight I am making an angel food cake with whipped cream and berries.

These cheesecake brownies are super fudgy and very rich!! Probably some of my best gfree baking work to date.

Making them was pretty easy, I simply took the cheesecake part of this recipe: CHEESECAKE SWIRL BROWNIES and paired it with the brownie part of this recipe: BEST COCOA BROWNIES I just subbed in white rice flour for the wheat flour and it worked perfectly! Swirl in the cheesecake batter, bake at 325 for about 45-50 mins. Then chill completely for at least 4 hours or overnight before slicing. They are best served cold (in my opinion)

Enjoy!!

 

 

 

 

Recipe: Vegan Rolos!

vegan rolos

Vegan. Gluten free. 5 ingredient. Super simple.You’ll want to try these. It seems a bit far fetched but these honestly taste just like Rolos!

I got the recipe from Oh She Glows here

Ingredients

•    11 large pitted soft Medjool dates (honestly, any dates would likely work)
•    1/2 tbsp peanut butter (or other nut or seed butter, i used almond butter)
•    pinch of fine grain sea salt ( i used pink!)
•    scant 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
•    1 tsp coconut oil

Directions
1. Process dates with nut/seed butter until a sticky paste forms.
2. Chill date mixture in freezer for 10 minutes, then shape into about 18 small balls.
3. Freeze balls again for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, melt chocolate with coconut oil.
4. Dunk each chilled ball into chocolate. Tap off excess. Stick with toothpick.
5. Place balls back into the freezer for at least 20 minutes to set. Bites taste best when they are firm and cold, straight from the freezer. They soften at room temp, but do not melt.

 

Recipe: Flourless Chocolate Torte

choc torte

Tomorrow is Valentines Day. It’s also my parents wedding anniversary! Celebrating 32 awesome years. Love them!

Valentines Day tends to be a chocolate day. For me, everyday is a chocolate day. But I digress. (I’ve always wanted to say that, hope I used it correctly lol)

I wanted to post an easy, VERY satisfying and beautiful chocolate dessert that you could make tomorrow! (or any day!) It’s something I often bring to a dinner party because its simple but its a show stopper. And because its so rich, one cake can serve many (small slices)

I serve mine with a simple raspberry sauce but blackberry would be nice too.

This is the recipe that I always use. From allrecipes.com

Recipe makes 1 8-inch single layer cake

•    4 (1 ounce) squares semisweet chocolate, chopped
•    1/2 cup butter
•    3/4 cup white sugar
•    1/2 cup cocoa powder
•    3 eggs, beaten
•    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions
1.    Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Grease an 8 inch round cake pan & dust w/ cocoa
2.    In the top of a double boiler over lightly simmering water, melt chocolate and butter. Remove from heat, stir in sugar, cocoa powder, eggs, and vanilla. Pour into prepared pan.
3.    Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely. Slices can also be reheated for 20 to 30 seconds in the microwave before serving. I prefer to serve mine chilled.

Gluten Free 5 minute Chocolate Cake in a Mug

Ever get a late night craving for something sweet but think you have nothing in the house.You probably have these staples in your pantry to whip up this quick and delicious treat.Gluten Free 5 Minute Chocolate Cake in a Mug!

Ingredients:


4 tablespoons rice flour
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 egg
3 tablespoons milk (can substitute with non dairy milk)
3 tablespoons melted butter
3 tablespoons chocolate chips,or coconut or marshmallows (these optional add ins are endless)
1 dash vanilla extract

Directions:

1 .Also required: 1 large coffee mug.

2 .Add dry ingredients to mug, and mix well.
3 .Add the egg and mix thoroughly.
4 .Pour in the milk and butter and mix well.
5 .Add the chocolate chips or other add ins  (if using).
6 .Add vanilla extract, and mix again.
7 .Put your mug in the microwave and cook for approx. 2 minutes 45 seconds on high.
8 .The cake will rise over the top of the mug, but don’t be alarmed!
9 .Allow to cool a little, and tip out onto a plate if desired or eat directly from mug.
10.Eat!

Recipe: Gluten Free Salted Fudge Brownies

brownies gf

half-batch of gluten free salted brownies

Okay, so tonight I was hungry. For something sweet. Go figure. Not much in the cupboard either. But always have some rice flour. So I adapted my most favourite (and easiest) brownie recipe in my arsenal and made it gluten free. Worked like a charm.

THIS is the best cocoa brownie recipe ever. I’ve used it for years & now I made it gluten free. Thanks Smitten Kitchen!

Half Recipe Below: I only make a half recipe, because, well…. I have zero self control and no one person needs to eat an entire full recipe of brownies themselves. But a half recipe, that’s fine right? 😛 This makes a thinner 8×8 tray of brownies. Double it and you’ll get a bigger tray (but it will take longer to cook) But they are rich!

5 tablespoons unsalted butter
½ cup and 1/8 cups sugar
half of 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg, cold
1/4 cup all-purpose gf flour (I just used plain old white rice flour)                                   pinch of pink Himalayan salt

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8×8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper or foil, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.

Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa in a bowl. Put it in the microwave for about 45 seconds (or until the butter is melted. Then stir it together. It looks fairly gritty at this point, but it smooths out once the egg and rice flour are added.

Stir in the vanilla with a wooden spoon (I dont know why but I always do use a wooden spoon lol) Add the egg stirring vigorously. When the batter looks thick, shiny, and well blended, add the rice flour and stir until you cannot see it any longer. Spread evenly in the lined pan. Sprinkle with Pink Himalayan salt.

Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 19 to 22 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack. Then toss into the fridge til it gets really, really cold. This really helps make the texture better (more fudgey) and makes them easier to cut too.