Chocolate, Coconut and Banana Sorbet with Strawberries

Byline: Glenda Bishop.

Banana Sorbet

I just love chocolate and strawberries. They are a match made in heaven. And when you combine these two flavours into something that is both super healthy and delicious, it’s pretty hard to pass it up.

Most people need to eat more fruit each day, so anything we can do to make fruit more interesting has got to be a good thing. The trick to keeping fruit recipes healthy is to avoid adding in refined sugars, and making sure that you serve them with other whole foods as much as possible.

One of the fun trends lately has been banana sorbets or ‘ice creams’. These are really quick and easy to make and simply involve taking some frozen bananas and then blending them up in a food processor. You can mix the bananas with other frozen fruits, or add in different flavors to create whatever combination you like. But remember to keep any additions really simple so that this dessert remains incredibly healthy and an excellent substitute for sugar-laden ice creams.

Banana Sorbet

So here’s a super easy treat to make at home that both kids and adults will love. You could even use this as a fun way to end a dinner party. Trust me, your guests won’t realize that it’s frozen banana unless you tell them, and neither will the kids! So why not give it a go today.

Banana Sorbet Ingredients

  • 2 medium (or 1 and ½ large) bananas, frozen in their skins for at least one day
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup ‘milk’ of your choice (I use rice milk, but any non-dairy option will work, particularly coconut milk)
  • 1 rounded tablespoon of shredded coconut
  • 2 punnets of strawberries, hulled and chopped
  • Extra shredded coconut for serving

Banana Sorbet Instructions

  1. Remove the bananas from the freezer and sit on the bench for 10-15 minutes until you can peel the skin from the banana. After removing the peel, roughly chop the banana and then put it into a food processor and process until it becomes crumbly.
  2. Add the cocoa and ‘milk’ and then blend until mostly smooth – you will need to scrape the sides of the bowl to make sure it is all blending well. Then add the coconut and blend until just mixed through, you still want the coconut to be a bit chunky.
  3. The sorbet can be eaten immediately as a soft-serve, or you can transfer it to a container and freeze for at least 1 hour until it has hardened.
  4. To serve, divide the strawberries between 4 bowls, top with the chocolate sorbet and sprinkle with the extra coconut.

 

Glenda Bishop - Healthy Stories

Glenda Bishop is a Registered Nutritionist and the founder of Healthy Stories. Her mission is to show people that healthy eating can be easy, doesn’t have to cost a fortune, and can taste great! Click here for instant access to her free ebook on How to Get Enough Veggies in Your Day.

Dairy Free and Gluten Free Beef Stroganoff with Raw Noodles

Gluten Free Beef StroganoffByline: Andrea Quigley Maynard.

Who says eating gluten free or dairy free has to be boring? Who says you can’t have comfort food when eating a whole foods diet? Eating well doesn’t have to be boring, complicated or bland. This gluten free beef stroganoff recipe is completely free of dairy and gluten and is as creamy and rich as you remember your mother’s recipe being.  And it’s mostly made up of whole foods!

Instead of using noodles made from some alternative flour, I use raw zucchini and carrots, simply peeled into strips with a vegetable peeler. Instead of sour cream, I use a homemade cashew cream that takes just a minute to make (though you do need to soak the cashews ahead of time).  Because half of this meal is cooked (the beef and mushroom mixture) and half of it is raw (the “noodles” and cashew cream), this meal makes a great all season dinner.  It’s warm and hearty enough for cold winters but has the cooling crunch you crave in warmer weather.

Don’t be afraid to serve this to people who eat dairy and wheat.  It’s tasty enough that they won’t miss it! I promise!

Dairy Free / Gluten Free Beef Stroganoff

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper or 2 stalks of celery, chopped
12 oz white button mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves minced garlic
1 lb grass fed organic ground beef
1 tbsp potato starch
1/2 cup unsalted organic gluten free beef broth
2 tbsp organic tomato paste
1-2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce (Lea & Perrin’s is gluten free)
3/4 – 1 cup cashew cream (see directions below)
sea salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
fresh parsley
optional: a little smoked paprika
2 medium organic zucchini
2 large organic carrots

Directions

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or dutch oven over medium heat until hot, then add onions, peppers (or celery) and mushrooms. Cook until the mushrooms are browned and the onions are slightly soft. Cook the garlic with the vegetables for the last minute of cooking. Remove the veggies from the pan and set aside.

While your veggies are cooking, make your “noodles”. Wash your carrots and zucchini well and leave the peel on if they’re organic. Using a regular vegetable peeler (you don’t need a spiralizer or a fancy peeler for this), carefully peel your veggies into long strips. Keep peeling until you can’t peel them any more. You may need to rotate them or lay them flat on a cutting board firmly to get as much peel as possible. These vegetable “peelings” are now your noodles!

Saute the ground beef in the same pan until browned, breaking up with a wooden spoon occasionally. When the beef is just about cooked through, add the mushrooms, peppers (or celery) and onion back to the pan, sprinkle the mixture with the potato starch and stir well. Cook for one to two minutes then add the beef stock, tomato paste, and Worcestershire sauce and cook for 5 minutes or until the liquid begins to thicken. Turn the heat source off and stir in your cashew cream.  Season with sea salt and black pepper to taste.

Stir in the “noodles” or serve the stroganoff over the noodles depending on your preference (I sometimes stir the noodles in to take the chill off so they’re warm). Serve with a sprinkle of fresh parsley and some smoked paprika if you like. This makes 4 servings.

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Cashew Cream (Dairy Free Sour Cream)

1 cup raw unsalted cashews (soaked for 6-8 hours)
1/2 cup water
1 tbsp lemon juice
sea salt to taste

Directions

Put all Cashew Cream ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides with a spatula if necessary. This makes more cashew cream than the stroganoff recipe calls for but you can use it on many other things (try it chilled on a baked potato) and it will last a week in the refrigerator.

 

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Andrea Quigley Maynard is a Board Certified Holistic Health Coach and graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Her passion is helping women have a healthier relationship with food, lose weight and increase their energy naturally, by making a whole foods diet accessible and delicious.  A foodie at heart, Andrea believes that eating healthy can and should taste great.  When she’s not whipping up something delectable in the kitchen or coaching clients, she’s likely to be found at a Barre class, at the beach or doing genealogy research for fun. You can learn more about her at her coaching website or visit her blog.

Homemade Gluten-Free Granola Recipe

Byline: Andrea Hood

Homemade Gluten-Free Granola RecipeAre you a fan of that yummy granola you can buy at the store? Don’t get me wrong – most of it is pretty delicious – a perfect combination of crunchy and sweet.

But have you ever taken a good look at the ingredients and nutritional information? More often then not there is one particular ingredient that is first or second on the list – meaning that’s the main ingredient used in the granola.

That ingredient: SUGAR.

Sugar is a hot topic lately and chances are you’ve heard about the harmful effects it has on your body. There’s a lot of great information out there, so I’m going to give you a short summarized list about sugar and why you should avoid it.

  • Sugar increases inflammation in the body. Inflammation causes diseases like heart disease, cancer, obesity, and diabetes.
  • Sugar is highly addictive – some say even more addictive than drugs like cocaine and heroine. Your body literally craves the sweet stuff and if it doesn’t get it you can suffer from serious withdrawal symptoms like headaches, mood swings, and drowsiness.
  • Sugar spikes your blood sugar, which in turn, increases your waist line. If you’re looking to lose or maintain your weight, sugar is your worst enemy.
  • Sugar is found in the vast majority of processed foods – breads, cereals, juice, soda, and those not-so-yummy frozen dinners (yup – even the “diet” brands).

Now if you weren’t aware of this prior to reading this article, do not beat yourself up! I honestly didn’t know until a few years ago myself when I became a health coach, started reading labels, and started researching the effects of sugar on the body.

Fear not – you can still enjoy your favorite foods, like granola, without having to worry about the negative effects of sugar.

I have a delicious Homemade Gluten-Free Granola recipe I’m sharing with you below that is easy to make and contains only a bit of natural sweetener. So skip the store bought stuff that is loaded with sugar, and give this recipe a try!

Homemade Gluten-Free Granola Recipe

Makes approximately 5.5 cups

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups Gluten-Free Oats (not the quick cooking variety as they are overly processed)
  • 1/2 cup raw organic almonds
  • 1/2 cup raw organic cashews
  • 1/2 cup raw organic sunflower seeds
  • 1/3 cup organic grade B maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup raw organic coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch of sea salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 300 degrees fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Place the almonds, cashews, and sunflower seeds into a high speed blender or food processor. Give them a rough chop so they are in small pieces. Empty them into a large bowl.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and use your hands to throughly combine.
  4. Spread the mixture onto the baking sheet and place in the oven. Cook for 18-20 minutes, or until the oats are slightly firm. Be careful not to overcook, because the mixture can burn.
  5. Let the granola cool and store it in containers – I love using Mason Jars with reusable lids.

My favorite way to eat this yummy granola: 1 cup of frozen blueberries, topped with 1/2 cup Homemade Gluten-Free Granola, with 1 cup of almond milk poured on top. DELISH!

What’s your favorite way to eat granola? Share below in the comments – I’d love to hear from you :)

Andrea Hood Headshot copyAndrea Hood is a passionate Certified Holistic Health Coach, foodie, and localvore who loves playing in the kitchen. She helps women live healthier, happier, and more energized lives by running online nutrition programs and a business mentorship program for health and wellness professionals. Get free weekly recipes and health coaching tips at www.andreahood.com.

Vegan, Gluten Free Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Gluten Free Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookiesByline: Tina Paymaster.

Why is it that most of us think we have to give up the food we love in order to create a healthier lifestyle, get the body we want or the skin and hair that we desire?

Life should be about fulfillment and enjoyment, not deprivation.

I was eating dairy every day at the time I was diagnosed with lactose intolerance…cottage cheese with fruit for breakfast, Greek yogurt for a snack, goat cheese on everything!

Being told that I’d have to give up this entire food group in order to heal my digestive issues wasn’t something I wanted to hear, but I also knew that I didn’t want to feel horrible anymore either. I was feeling tired, nauseous, bloated and moody every day. My skin was breaking out for the first time in my life. I knew I only had once choice. So I decided to slowly start to cut out dairy little by little. And sure enough, after only a few weeks, my physical and emotional symptoms started fading away and my skin started clearing up too.

Having to cut out certain foods that my body was not able to digest and assimilate wasn’t easy, but I feel that it was a gift.

I became more creative with ingredients that I was using to bake and cook, choosing ones that not only made my body feel good, but also made my food taste amazing so I didn’t feel deprived at all. My passion for cooking went to a whole new level and today, I love sharing my knowledge and joy for creating beautiful, nourishing and delicious food with my clients, friends and family.

Through working on healing my own body, I learned that you can still “have your cake and eat it too”…

You just have to be conscious of the ingredients you’re putting into that “cake.” By choosing cleaner, more pure ingredients that your body can properly digest and assimilate, you can still enjoy many of the foods you love. You don’t have to give up all the foods you love in order to live a healthier life. You just have to get a little more creative with your ingredients.

Even as a health coach, I get cravings for something sweet now and then. These delicious oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are the perfect treat. They are so easy to make and are actually good for you! Completely vegan, gluten-free and sugar free, these are cookies that you don’t have to feel guilty about indulging in once in a while.

You can have them as pre-workout energy fuel, an afternoon snack or even a breakfast treat!

Gluten Free Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookies

Vegan, Gluten Free Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients

1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp almond butter
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 cup lightly ground gluten-free oats*
½ tsp cinnamon
pinch of sea salt
2 tsp coconut palm sugar (optional for a little added sweetness, omit for sugar-free)
1/2 cup chopped raw dark chocolate
¼ cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Directions for making these Gluten Free Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookies

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Mash bananas in a medium sized bowl, until almost pureed, but a little chunky.
3. Add in vanilla, almond butter and coconut oil and stir to combine.
4. Add in ground gluten free oats, cinnamon, pinch of sea salt and coconut palm sugar if using. Mix to combine.
5. Fold in chopped raw dark chocolate and walnuts if using.
6. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
7. Drop small rounds of cookie batter into sheet. Should make about 11-12 small cookies. Bake for 20-25 minutes until lightly browned on top. Let cool and serve. Cookies should keep in an airtight container for at least a week.

* I just ground up some oats in a blender leaving a few whole pieces so there’s a little more texture to the cookies. For a smoother cookie, feel free to grind the oats more.

Tina Paymaster

Tina Paymaster is a Certified Health & Lifestyle Expert and Recipe Developer who inspires women to discover their confidence and potential for true happiness & optimal health by teaching them how to love their bodies, feed their souls and create nourishing lifestyles that last.
She currently works with her clients through customized one-on-one wellness programs, group coaching programs and private cooking classes.
You can learn more about Tina on her website.

Gluten Free Nutty Dessert Recipe

This is a recipe by 11 year old Emma Barberi, aka Little Raw Vegan Girl.

I wanted to make something special. I imagined a cake with a lot of colorful fruit on it, topped with a sauce. I planned it all out and came up with this recipe. My dad tasted it and said, “That’s a whole lotta awesomeness!” I thought that was the perfect name for it.

Gluten Free Nutty Dessert RecipeWhole Lotta Awesomeness Recipe

Base:

  • 1/2 cup macadamia nuts
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup dried mulberries

Fruit Topping:

  • 6 strawberries
  • 3/4 cup blueberries
  • 1/3 cup raspberries

Raspberry Sauce:

  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 2 tablespoons water

How To Make This Gluten Free Nutty Dessert Recipe

Process base ingredients in food processor until they are blended just enough to stick together. Don’t blend more than that, or you will have a big sticky mess. Shape into a circle on your plate and flatten it out a little. Put the fruit topping ingredients on top of the base.

For the raspberry sauce, blend sauce ingredients together in the blender and then spoon on top of the fruit. It’s beautiful and delicious!

Serves 1 or 2

Emma 150x142 pixelsEmma Barberi, Little Raw Vegan Girl, is eleven years old. Along with her parents and eleven brothers and sisters, she likes to help families raise healthy children. She hopes to be an inspiration to other kids to live a happy, healthy life.
You can follow her on Facebook at Little Raw Vegan Girl
You can subscribe to her family’s blog, Our Healthy Ways