Night to Day Oats

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My recipe for overnight oats which I’m loving for breakfast at the moment. I’ve been eating them a few times a week for months now but they are currently being consumed pretty much on a daily basis!

Sometimes after I wake up I don’t feel like eating straight away. Or if I practice yoga first thing, I’m really hungry by the time I finish and want to eat something RIGHT after. Overnight oats work in both cases. They are one of the easiest things to prepare and they’re ready whenever you want them for breakfast.

This version is chocolate with berries but it’s easily adaptable to your liking. Enjoy this without the raw cacao and make it vanilla. Add nuts or granola with different fruit. Try adding some shredded coconut or superfoods such as maca. Making it with chocolate actually seems like you’re having dessert for breakfast and who wouldn’t like that?

The first three ingredients are your base. From there, it truly is endless so experiment with different flavour combinations as you see fit.

Ingredients:

1 cup of oats

1 cup almond milk (coconut milk, rice milk, etc.)

¼ cup filtered water

Toppings & Add-ins:

1 tsp vanilla or ½ vanilla pod

1 tbsp raw cacao

1 tbsp maca

½ -1 tbsp maple syrup (date syrup, honey, coconut sugar)

Nut butter

Shredded coconut

Granola

Nuts & seeds (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, sunflower, pumpkin, etc.)

Fresh fruit (berries, banana, orange slices)

Directions:

Simply add the oats and your choice of milk to a bowl, mix together, and leave overnight in the fridge. When ready to eat, remove the bowl from the fridge, mix again, and add your toppings. I love mine with the raw cacao, a little maple syrup, sprinkling of chia seeds, cacao nibs, and frozen raspberries.

P.S. You can make this in a mason jar and take it with you on the go in the morning for your commute or to eat at your desk!

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Dairy Free Soft Serve Ice Cream: Chocolate & Vanilla

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This is a revelation if you’re intolerant or have any sensitivity to dairy. I’ve probably always been sensitive to dairy but as ice cream has always been my favourite, I have never wanted to give it up! Until now. I have found an alternative. And it may actually be a hundred times better.

I am a massive chocoholic. I have a huge sweet tooth so generally when I get a craving or when I go to make something, chocolate is the first thing that springs to mind. Some time ago I made this discovery while attempting to find something quick and easy to put together to satisfy a craving. I remembered I had a can of coconut milk in the fridge as I usually keep one in there. (Coconut milk is so great for many alternatives to dairy. You can make whipped cream, thicken a curry, make frosting for desserts, etc.)

This time I had an idea. I added some raw cacao and maple syrup to sweeten and then I popped the dish into the freezer. An hour later I had the most amazing, creamy, indulgent, chocolatey soft serve ice cream you could dream of. Seriously. Use coconut milk for a lush treat in anything but pop it in the freezer and it’s magic. It’s also the quickest thing to make ever. Try it yourself. You will not be disappointed. I challenge people to even question whether they miss ice cream at all!

I’ve since made a few other varieties and I’m sharing the chocolate and vanilla versions now. I can’t wait to experiment with some more flavours moving into warmer weather.

Ingredients:

1 x 400mL can of coconut milk (full fat!)

1 vanilla pod

2 tsp vanilla extract

2-3 tbsp raw cacao

2-4 tbsp maple syrup (date syrup, honey, more or less as you like to sweeten)

Directions:

1. Leave a can of coconut milk in the fridge overnight. When ready to use, separate the can into two equal parts of coconut milk in two bowls.

2. For the vanilla version: cut and scrape the seeds from the vanilla pod and add to the bowl. Add the vanilla extract and maple syrup, then whisk everything together by hand or with a hand blender until combined.

3. For the chocolate version: add the raw cacao and maple syrup to the other bowl and again whisk everything together. Make sure there are no lumps from the raw cacao.

4. Divide into smaller portions or put the bowls as they are into the freezer for 1 hour. When you’re ready to eat, remove from freezer and let stand for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

P.S. You can totally eat this for breakfast: It makes the best addition to things like pancakes or french toast. You can even use the vanilla version as a vegan custard which is amazing with desserts!

 

Cacao Beet Smoothie

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Okay, this had to turn out good because I am not the biggest fan of beetroot! There’s been a lot of vegetables that I’ve opened myself up to over the past few years and have really learned to love but unfortunately, beets are not one I can get on board with! However I still eat them, mainly by juicing them because they are very nutritious. They’re wonderful for cleansing your liver and detoxing the body. No matter what though, they still end up tasting quite “earthy” to me. Well, enter this smoothie! Combining beets with chocolate is a classic combination of late and this is an excellent way to get in some veggies AND enjoy chocolate. Guilt Free. Because using raw cacao allows you to keep all the wonderful properties of pure chocolate (such as magnesium which we all tend to be pretty deficient in!) And this is delicious. I promise even if you despise veggies at all, this is a winner. When I make this I don’t really measure too much so adjust the quantities to your liking as these are estimates. You may find you’d like to add more cacao or berries or even a frozen banana to the mix.

Ingredients:

1 cup almond milk (coconut milk, etc)

2 small beets

1/2- 1 whole avocado

1/2- 1 cup raspberries

2 tsp vanilla extract or a vanilla pod

Couple tbsp raw cacao

Pinch of cinnamon

Optional add-ins: raw cacao nibs, chia seeds, hemp hearts

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.

I added hemp hearts to mine for an added boost of protein. And a sprinkling of chia seeds and raw cacao nibs on top to make it that little bit more chocolatey!

Sweet Potato Poppy Seed Bread

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Sweet potatoes are used for many things these days. There’s good reason for this as they have a variety of nutrients, a great texture, and an almost sweet taste (making them great in desserts as well!) This bread is a great alternative if you’re looking for one that is gluten free, dairy free, and refined sugar free.

Ingredients:

2 cups sweet potato, cubed & heaped

1 1/3 cups buckwheat flour

4 tbsp coconut oil

2 eggs

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tbsp poppy seeds

pinch of sea salt

Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 350° while you steam the sweet potato until it’s very soft (about 15-20 minutes) set aside to cool slightly before adding to a food processor.

2. Blend with eggs and coconut oil until smooth. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt processing until all is combined.

3. Add to a coconut oil greased, lined baking pan and sprinkle the poppy seeds across the top of the bread to create the crust. Bake for 45 minutes- 1 hour.

The bread is ready when a toothpick comes out clean. Enjoy this with eggs for a savoury touch or add some coconut oil and almond butter for a sweet afternoon snack.

 

Pancake Day

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Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Day although not a typical holiday per say has always been a favourite of mine. I’m not sure if that’s because pancakes were the first thing I learned to make, or that they’re really versatile to play with and quick to make, or because I have always loved them! With the day fast approaching (it falls on February 17th this year- make note!) I altered my usual recipe to be gluten free and dairy free but still healthy and yummy to enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner! (Am I the only one who does that?) It was such a treat to have them all day long as a kid!

This is a basic recipe that makes approximately 6 pancakes. You can double the recipe for more servings and you can add in some extra ingredients to what you fancy. A tablespoon of raw cacao makes for chocolate ones or fruit like apples and blueberries make great options. Of course, being Canadian, enjoying them as they are with some maple syrup is one of the best ways I’ll say you can enjoy them!

Ingredients:

1 egg

1/2 cup milk (almond, coconut, etc.)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tbsp coconut oil, melted, plus extra for the pan

1/2- 3/4 cup buckwheat flour

1 tsp baking powder

pinch of sea salt

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, add the egg and milk. Whisk together until light and foamy. Add the vanilla.

2. Melt the coconut oil on the stove top then slowly stream into the mix, whisking as you go along.

3. Add the baking powder, salt, and flour until everything is smooth. Set aside for a couple of minutes while you heat your frying pan *If you’re adding anything else such as fruit, do so now*

4. Heat a frying pan on low-medium heat and melt a teaspoon of coconut oil, making sure to coat the whole pan. When it’s ready, take about 1/8 cup of batter and pour into the pan.

5. Allow the pancakes a minute or two to cook. You’ll know it’s ready to flip with bubbles begin to appear and pop on the surface of the pancake. Flip to the other side and allow another minute or so to cook.

6. Complete with the rest of the batter. Add coconut oil or organic butter and some maple syrup, fruit, nuts, a sprinkle of cinnamon or raw cacao.

Enjoy these as you will- they’re so quick and easy to make and you can really play with the flavours. I’ve made them gluten free, dairy free, and refined sugar free however you can substitute organic dairy milk or other types of flour. You’ll find yourself making them more often than not after you try them once. Happy Pancake Day!

Raw Chocolate Chia Pudding

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This raw cacao chia pudding tastes amazing. It’s good for you as well, which might be hard to believe as it looks and tastes decadent enough to be a dessert. However, with all the ingredients added to this it’s incredibly healthy and filling enough for breakfast or anytime.

Chia seeds are a bit strange when you first experiment with them and can be a bit of an odd texture but I promise when mixed with raw cacao, it tastes delicious and will have you eating them in no time!

They’re great in smoothies, sprinkled on top of porridge or yogurt, or added to baked goods. You can even use them to replace eggs in recipes.

Probably one of the best things about this recipe is that it takes no time at all to prepare. Just mix everything the night before and you’ll wake up to a bowl full of superfood goodness!

Ingredients:

To serve 1

1 cup almond milk (or other milk of your choice)

¼ cup chia seeds

½ tsp vanilla extract

½ tsp maca

½ tsp cinnamon

1 tbsp maple syrup (you could use raw honey or date syrup as well)

1 tbsp raw cacao

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, mix together well your milk and chia seeds allowing the seeds to become incorporated with the liquid.
  1. Set aside for a couple of minutes to “gel” then mix the rest of your ingredients in until everything is nicely combined.
  1. Pop in the fridge overnight until you’re ready to eat in the morning. Sprinkle with whatever toppings you like.

I used hazelnuts and flaked coconut but you could add anything you like: nuts and/or seeds, granola, fruit, etc. Raspberries would be a great addition with the chocolate!

 

 

Homemade Almond Milk

almond milk

 

If you haven’t tried making your own almond milk (or any nut milk for that matter) you should definitely try it out! I had never given much thought to the difference between shop bought almond milk and homemade almond milk. Having made it myself I can definitely say that it is amazing and far outweighs anything that you’ll find on a shelf (which often contain fillers) It’s creamy and delicious and so very versatile in replacement of dairy milk. Making your own nut milk is a great way of knowing the exact ingredients you are consuming . It’s also incredibly good for you! This is how I make mine:

Ingredients:

2 cups of organic almonds (I usually buy the blanched almonds but you can easily use the ones with the skins on)

5-6 cups of filtered water (depending on how creamy you would like the milk)

pinch of sea salt

Optional add-ins: ½ tsp vanilla extract, ½ tsp cinnamon

You will need: Nut-milk bag, cheesecloth, or muslin cloth

Directions: 

  1. Place almonds in a bowl of water to soak overnight. This not only softens the almonds to allow them to blend better but also breaks down the enzymes on the outer skin of nuts for easier digestion.
  1. When you’re ready to use, drain and rinse your almonds, then add to a blender with the 6 cups of filtered water and blend until smooth (Note: Depending on the size of your blender, you may want to do this in batches)
  1. Place your milk bag (or if using muslin cloth, line a fine mesh strainer with it) over a large bowl and slowly pour the milk through it.
  1. Use a spatula to lightly press down the liquid through the cloth and strainer in batches until you’re left with just the pulp in the cloth. Squeeze through the rest of the liquid and set aside the almond pulp.
  1. Return the milk to the blender adding in sea salt, vanilla extract, and/or cinnamon and blend again. When finished, add to a sealed jug and keep stored in the fridge to enjoy all week long.

Makes approx. 1 1/2 litres of almond milk

Use this in place of dairy milk in smoothies, porridge, breakfast, and baking recipes, or just on its own.