Parmesan Roasted Broccoli

Roasted vegetables are a fall treasure.Peppers,Tomatoes and Eggplant are some of the veg that roast well.Broccoli and Cauliflower are also stars in the oven.

This recipe is great for a side dish with fish,chicken or any meat.

Parmesan Roasted Broccoli

One head of cut broccoli washed and patted dry.Place in bowl and pour 1/8 cup of olive oil over the pieces of broccoli.Salt and pepper generously.

Sprinkle 1 tsp garlic powder and 1TBSP Parmesan cheese over the broccoli.Mix to make sure every piece is coated.

In a 375 degree preheated oven place broccoli on a sheet pan lined with foil.Bake for 30 minutes.

Gluten Free, Grain Free, Blueberry Banana Muffins

This is a great recipe for using up ripe bananas you may have.They are nice treat with a cup of tea or pack in lunches.They freeze well

1 cup blanched almond flour
1/4 cup  coconut flour
3  ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
2  eggs, room temperature
1/4 cup  honey
1/3 cup  butter , melted
3/4 tsp  baking soda
1/2 tsp  sea salt
1 tsp  lemon juice
1 .5 tsp  vanilla extract
1 .5 tsp  cinnamon
2/3 cup blueberries(I used frozen)

1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place muffin liners in muffin tin.
2. In a large bowl, add coconut and almond flours, baking soda, salt; mix to combine.
3. To the same bowl, add eggs, mashed bananas, honey, butter, lemon  juice, vanilla, cinnamon; mix again to combine. Gently stir in blueberries.
4. Drop by tablespoons into the muffin tins. Fill 12 muffins full. Bake for about 17-20 minutes. Let cool in pan for 5-10 minutes. Transfer muffins to a cooling rack. Enjoy!

Grain Free Pecan Chocolate Chip Cookie

In my quest to eat gluten free and mostly grain free,I look for different flour substitutes for my sweet treats.Most of us are very familiar with baking with almond flour but it is on the expensive side.

On my last trip to Bulk Barn I noticed ground pecans and wondered if I could substitute it for the almond flour in my favourite Grain Free Chocolate Chip Cookie  recipe. At half the price per pound it was certainly worth a shot.The result was a crispier flatter cookie and every bit as delicious.

Pecan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yield: 1 dozen large cookies


  • 1/4 cup butter plus 2 Tblsp, softened
  • 1/3 cup cane sugar (can substitute brown or white sugar)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups ground pecans (pecan meal)
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut (optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside. Using an electric mixer, mix together the butter, sugar in a large bowl until very creamy (like frosting). Add the vanilla and egg, mixing until well incorporated. Mix in the baking soda and salt. Then slowly mix in the ground pecans, 1/2 cup at a time, until well blended. Using a spoon, fold in the chocolate chips and coconut, if using.

Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls about three-inches apart on parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake approximately 13 minutes. Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes on the baking sheet.

Asparagus Basics

Springtime in Ontario means fresh asparagus.You see it everywhere right now,so enjoy it while it lasts.

According to the Asparagus Farmers of Ontario, choose carefully when buying fresh asparagus. You should look for bright green stalks with tightly closed, compact tips and the stalks should be straight, firm and about 6 to 8 inches in length.

Store fresh asparagus by wrapping the bottom of the stalks in a damp paper towel. Put them in a plastic bag and refrigerate. Plan to use within 2 days.

Prepare fresh asparagus by first breaking off the butt end of each spear where it snaps easily. Save the woody bases for soup stock if desired. Next, wash the stalks thoroughly and carefully to remove any sand from under scales.

Preparing Asparagus

Cook asparagus by steaming, boiling, microwaving, oven-roasting, or stir frying.

  • To Steam: Lay asparagus in steamer basket and place over boiling water in saucepan. Cover and steam 5 to 7 minutes until asparagus is tender-crisp.
  • To Microwave: Place 1 lb. washed asparagus spears in microwave-safe dish. Add 2 tbsp. water. Cover. Cook at HIGH for 4 to 6 minutes, rearranging spears once so bottom spears are moved to top until tender crisp. Keep covered until ready to serve.
  • To Boil: Place asparagus, uncovered, in a large skillet or saucepan and cover with boiling water. Boil for 5 to 7 minutes.
  • To Oven-roast: Arrange 1 or 2 lbs. of asparagus spears in a single layer in a large shallow baking dish. Drizzle with 1 to 2 tbsp. vegetable oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake, uncovered, at 500 deg. F. (260 C.) for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender but still slightly firm.
  • To Stir-fry: Cut asparagus into 1 inch pieces and cook in skillet or wok, using equal amounts of butter or oil, for 5 to 7 minutes.

Asparagus is…

  • Low in calories; just 20 calories per serving (8 medium spears)
  • Fat and cholesterol and gluten free
  • An excellent source of folacin
  • A leading source of glutahione
  • A good source of protein
  • A significant source of thiamin and vitamin B6
  • One of the richest sources of rutin, a drug which strengthens capillary walls.

A simple way I like to prepare the asparagus is to boil them in a large frying pan for about 5 minutes.Drain the water,leaving the spears in the pan.Add butter,salt, Parmesan cheese and lemon juice.Shake the spears around to coat with the cheese and serve immediately.


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


  • 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: Easy Gluten Free Peanut Sauce

In my continuing efforts to eat more vegetables,I needed something extra that would help me on my journey.Peanut sauce was the answer.I buy frozen mixed vegetables (Asian Mix) or fresh prepared stir fry mix or if I am feeling very energetic I chop a variety of veg like broccoli,carrots,snow peas etc.Please feel free to use your favourite combos.
Once the vegetables are stir fried add the peanut sauce and cook for a minute more coating everything well.
You can also use this sauce for chicken,hot or cold rice noodles and as a marinade for any meat.The possibilities are endless.
PS. I made this peanut sauce last week with Asian stir fry vegetables and centre cut pork chops which I marinated in the peanut sauce overnight then baked them.My husband said this was a restaurant quality meal.I think that is good right?
 Peanut Sauce
2 tablespoons natural smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons tamari or gluten free soy sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon brown or white sugar
juice from half a lime
1/4 tsp red chili flakes (optional)

Microwave ingredients for about 30-40 seconds.

Cheap and Easy

Here are some ideas for cheap and easy gluten free meals and snacks:

  • Baked  white potato or sweet  potato topped with butter, chives,  ground beef,  broccoli, cheddar cheese
  • Roasted peppers can be filled with rice, ground meat, spices, cheese
  • Rice and beans (both are cheap and can be bought in bulk)
  • Plain corn tortillas are gluten free. They’re cheap and can be filled with all sorts of stuff.
  • Apples, bananas, and celery with nut butter or with cheese
  • Salad with chicken or turkey, dried cherries or cranberries, walnuts, goat cheese, raspberry vinaigrette (check the label for gluten)
  • Cook a whole chicken in a crock pot or oven . Then use the carcass to make a chicken stock for pennies.
  • Any ground meat sauteed with any veggies of your choosing. Add chicken or beef stock to make it a soup, or add rice to stretch it out further.
  • Hamburger patties topped with cooked onion, bacon, cheese, mushrooms, laid on top of salad greens — no bun required
  • Pot roast in a crockpot — put the meat on top of a bed of onions, leave it on low all day and about an hour or two before dinner add in whatever veggies you like, such as potatoes, carrots, parsnips, rutabagas, mushrooms. Choose an inexpensive cut like Outside or Inside Round.
  • Taco Salad: Season ground beef with cumin and chili pepper, add chopped tomatoes, avocado, cheese and sour cream all on top of lettuce greens or serve with corn chips.
  • Breakfast can be leftovers, or eggs served in various ways with bacon. Gluten Free Chex and Gluten Free Rice Crispies are two cereals that aren’t too expensive.
  • Smoothies are quick, try using canned coconut milk + frozen berries + cinnamon and sweetener of your choice.
  •  Tuna, salmon, sardines,  in a can. Serve over mixed greens and  chopped vegetables and salad dressing of your choice.

Shake Shake Shake

Did you know that Protein Shakes for breakfast are a great way to start the day. They are gluten free, nutritious and delicious and a good way to get a serving of vegetables in at the beginning of the day. When frozen berries are on sale I buy a few bags to have on hand in the freezer to make a quick breakfast. Another tip, when your bananas have seen better days, peel and slice them and put them on a parchment lined cookie sheet to freeze.When frozen  put in a freezer bag to add to your shakes, whenever the mood strikes.

The shakes make a nice post workout drink as well.

Berry Protein Shake

1 cup of frozen berries

1 small banana

½ cup cottage cheese or greek yogurt

1 cup of spinach

Taste for sweetness and if needed add some Sugar or Honey or Maple Syrup.


Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Shake

1 small banana

1 cup of spinach

1 tbsp of cocoa.

3 ice cubes (if banana is frozen omit the ice cubes)

1/2 cup of Almond Milk or Cow Milk(if too thick add extra milk)

¼ cup peanut butter or almond butter or sunflower seed butter

Taste for sweetness and if needed add some Sugar or Honey or Maple Syrup


Recipe: Raspberry-Vanilla Cupcakes

Sometimes I bake things from scratch. Sometimes I use mixes and “jack them up” as I call it. This, is one of those times.

I thought this was a cute recipe to kick off February, since Valentines Day is just two weeks away and these are somewhat festive cupcakes!

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It doesn’t get much easier than this!

I used a gluten free white cake mix (make according to directions on the box)
Fold 1 container of fresh raspberries into the batter
Line the tin with cupcake liners
Fill them up about ¾’s of the way with batter
Bake according to the instructions on the box.

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Then I topped with a pre-made French vanilla icing and fresh raspberries.

These were fresh and delightful, however the boxed mix I tried (Irresistibles brand from Food Basics) was pretty dense so I wasn’t pleased with that but I think with a Betty Crocker mix (which I really like) this would be much better.

A nice light cupcake treat!

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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!


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


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.