Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Drinks, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Low Sugar, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

The Healthy Frappuccino: Pumpkin Spice Edition

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I just finished a hot and muggy run today and was debating spending money at Starbucks, but also craving my coffee smoothie. But it’s September now, so I can’t just have any coffee smoothie, but the fall version. I have some pumpkin spice protein powder, so I coupled that with cold brew pumpkin spice coffee and a bit of pumpkin pie spice. (Let’s see how many more times I can say “pumpkin pie spice” in one sentence.) They’re all blended together into the perfect Starbucks copycat Healthy Pumpkin Spice Frappuccino.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegetarian

Simply Savory Smoked Sweet Potato Shakshuka

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Mmmm, Smoked Sweet Potato Shakshuka. Same shakshuka as before as a base, but updated with some delicious sweet potato and smoked paprika for a more savory version. I love shakshuka because it’s so easier to throw together fast and it’s usually with budget-friendly, simple ingredients. If you don’t have fresh tomatoes, use two cans of diced tomatoes instead, which you probably have in your pantry. For a heartier meal, add another egg and/or some bread for dipping. I’m thinking a curried chickpea version may be in the distant future . . .

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

The Best Grain-Free Oatmeal & Porridge

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This is actually like porridge! I’ve been a little oatmeal’ed and overnight oats’ed out, but after all these brisk mornings, I wanted something with the same feel. You may be skeptical when mixing together flaxseed and chia seeds and nuts and coconut . . . but it is! Trust me. I was surprised too. I popped this concoction in the microwave thinking it wouldn’t absorb the milk and become fluffy quite like oatmeal does, but the result is like steel-cut oats or cream of wheat — just less gnarly and grainy; this Grain-Free Porridge with Fresh Figs has a much smoother and lighter finish. I had the last of my fresh figs left, so naturally I topped porridge with those and the some dried cranberries for a late summer, early fall feel.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, Smoothie, Snack, Vegetarian

You Won’t Even Know There’s Cauliflower in This Smoothie

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Don’t hate it until you try it: Raspberry Açai Cauliflower Smoothie. I’m a sucker for trying new food items, especially when I see these unsweetened açai purée packets continually pop up on multiple nutritionist recommended grocery lists. Açai (“ah-sigh-EE” but don’t even ask me to correctly pronounce this; I still butcher the name) is chuck full of nutrients and antioxidants due to its deep purple color — similar to blueberries and blackberries. Look for unsweetened packets in the freezer section making them easy to store and easy to have on hand. You can find them at Trader Joe’s for $4.49 or Whole Foods for $6.99 (at least that’s what it’s going for in Boston proper aka Beacon Hill). Since the purée packets are unsweetened, I added banana and frozen pineapple for some natural sugar. Frozen cauliflower adds nutrients and texture, and you can’t even tell there’s cauliflower in this thing.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

The Everything-You-Needed-in-Life Avo Toast

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This Everything but the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend is EVERYTHING! Literally though. It’s salty, savory and just plain fun. And it’s $1.99 at Trader Joe’s, which totally justifies buying it versus making it (but you can obviously still make it — check out Gimme Some Oven‘s version). I love this Everything Bagel Avocado Toast. I’ve honestly had this three days in a row. Maybe four . . . but who’s counting?

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Snack, Vegetarian

Late Summer Peach Muffins with a Pseudo-Streusel

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Happy meal prep! Class is about to start up again after a two week hiatus. Having 9 am to 9 pm class on Mondays is going to be a wee bit rough, so obviously I need some new muffins in my life. I concocted a batch of Almond Peach Protein Muffins since I love fresh, ripe, juicy peaches with almond extract in the summer. Topped with a little brown sugar and chopped almonds, the muffins aren’t overly sweet and hit the spot with just a hint of summer as we move to the fall.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Meal Prep, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Holy Cow Homemade English Muffins

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This was quite fun! I haven’t truly made bread from scratch before, but I’ve made beer bread or ones using a bread machine. I chose to make Whole Wheat English Muffins post finals and as a study break before my next one. Making bread dough from scratch is actually cathartic even if it’s a bit of a waiting game. I got to properly knead dough to add air to it to make it light and fluffy, while also stretching out the gluten strands to give it its texture, and also “punch” it down to remove the extra air after it rises. The key is to stretch out the dough and not to pound it. (Check out The Kitchn‘s guide for exactly how to properly knead dough.) I saw a recipe for homemade English muffins in Real Simple this winter, but I’ve had a big store-bought batch hanging out in my freezer. Even though these are technically dairy-free, they’re still fluffy and just like English muffins are their signature time in the skillet. I also didn’t have cornmeal for the bottom, but never fear! Just be a bit more weary when cooking the bottom since the cornmeal doesn’t act as a buffer.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

A P-P-P-Peanut Buttery Banana Breakfast

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Happy Meal Prep Sunday! Here’s an overnight oats recipe that’s got me through 5 am wake ups for clinical and kept me feeling full (in a good way) until I could grab a snack after 10 am or sometimes not until after noon. Peanut Butter Banana Overnight Oats are a sure way to make it through your morning. Plus, they’re your classic peanut butter and banana flavors with some walnuts for a crunch and protein power to keep you full.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

A Figtastic Breakfast

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Whole Foods has had a figs sale for the last few weeks and it’s been fantastic. (Perhaps “figtastic” is a better choice?) In honor of meal prep Monday, here’s Figs & Pecans  Overnight Oats. Overnight oats are some of my meal prep favorites, especially in the summer because it’s just as good cold. It’s also quite easy to throw together and uses summer’s fruit produce: figs, strawberries and rhubarb to natural sweeten your no hassle breakfast.

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Better Than Takeout, Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Drinks, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Low Sugar, One Pot Dish, Smoothie, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Just a Little Coffeeeeee Buzzzzzz

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I recently ordered a cold brew infuser from Amazon. Over 1,300 people recommended it and it has not disappointed. The coffee is strong and perfectly cold brewed. Plus, it’s easy to use and store. I’ve made this coffee smoothie before using chilled coffee brewed in a traditional way. Using cold brew was so much better; it’s stronger, darker and maintains that classic bitter coffee taste in this Healthy Coffee Frappuccino. At Starbucks, the Grande (16 oz) Coffee or Coffee Light Frappuccinos contains 23-50 g of sugar (whaaaaat!?). This version is naturally sweetened with frozen bananas and a dash of agave. It’s frosty, tasty and satisfies your iced coffee cravings!

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