High Protein Molten Chocolate Lava Cake (Gluten-free, Grain-free, Refined sugar-free)

More than a mouthful…let’s just read that title again: High Protein Molten Chocolate Lava Cake.  It sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it?  Especially when you consider that it contains NO gluten, NO grains and NO refined sugar. But I’m here to tell you that it’s real and it’s more than good.  Oh yes, this recipe is downright divine.  It’s got a perfectly soft and moist cake around the edges, and a soft, luscious, melt-y chocolate center.  Just like any perfectly respectable lava cake should.  I hope the photos speak for themselves.  But don’t just take my word for it – make it for yourself!

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(High Protein) Healthful Cream Cheese Frosting (or Glaze)

It’s the little things…how many times have you heard that phrase?  But it’s true on so many levels and in so many contexts.  It’s the little rituals that you have with your loved ones that have the most meaning and hold the most space in your heart.  It’s the little adjustments in training and nutrition that set the gold medallists apart from the silver medallists.  And when it comes to food, it’s the little touches of flavour and presentation that can take a meal from merely mediocre to masterful.

I like to think that this healthful cream cheese frosting or glaze is one of those little things.  It’s the perfect little something extra that can be added to enhance just about any dessert, including protein muffins, carrot cake, cinnamon buns, apple pie…oh my!  Heck, it’s so good for you, you could even put it on your oatmeal.  No judgment!

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Low-carb Hot Cocoa

It feels like it’s been a while since I’ve posted a recipe.  Long, too long (say that in your best Sean Connery voice).  I’m one of those weirdos who still likes hot beverages even in hot weather (don’t worry if this makes you a weirdo, too; we can be weird together).  Actually, apparently it’s not actually all that weird.  Some of the hottest places on earth (the Equator; African nations) drink hot, HOT coffee and other hot beverages to encourage the body to sweat to help with this body-cooling mechanism.

So, here’s to sweaty days and sweaty nights, and I swear this low-carb hot cocoa is actually really great on cold winter days and nights, as well.  With fewer than fifty calories per mug, it’s basically perfect all of the time. Unlike “regular” hot chocolate, it’s also completely sugar-free, and also dariy-free, gluten-free and vegan.  And you can make it without breaking a sweat.

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Welcome to the SWYPO* Series

Courtesy of whole30.com
Courtesy of whole9life.com

That’s right folks, it’s time for a wink and a nod to the concept coined by Whole30 founders Melissa & Dallas Hartwig of “Sex With Your Pants On” concoctions that attempt to mimic the deliciousness of a “real deal” junk food treat with only Whole30-approved ingredients.

DURING your Whole30, these baked (and no-bake) goodies are explicitly off limits, and for good reason:

…If you continue your Whole30 program eating Paleo pizza, Paleo ice cream and Paleo pancakes, well… all it makes you think about is how less-than-stellar this version is, and how delicious the other version would be. Just like… well, you know.

The problem is, if you continue to have sex with your pants on, it’s inevitable that at some point you’re gonna want to take your pants off. And during your Whole30, that spells trouble…

Do you really want to spend the entirety of your Whole30 obsessed with all the stuff you can’t have, and eating the same foods you’ve been eating all along? We sure don’t! If you come out of your program with the same habits, patterns and food choices you had when you started, what are your chances for long-term, life-changing success? After all, those very same habits, patterns and food choices are what got you into trouble in the first place!

See more at http://whole9life.com/2011/10/sex-with-your-pants-on/.

So, what exactly am I doing? Well, I’ve set out, deliberately and intentionally, to create goodies that use only nourishing and nutrient-filled real, whole food ingredients that are compliant with the Whole30 program and yet are incredibly delicious, better-for-you desserts and sweet treats. Some are so good, in fact, that I’d dare to call them SWYPOFF (Sex With Your Pants Off)! Because there are going to be times in your life after your Whole30, that you’re going to want or need (i.e. to share with friends or family or to mark a special occasion) a certain special something. But after all you’ve learned from your Whole30 about healthy food choices and their impact on your life, you’re not often going to want to stomach (literally and figuratively) the laundry list of gut- and mood-disrupting and downright unpronounceable ingredients that can show up on processed options, or even in your own (or your mother’s own) homemade, from-scratch baking (there’s a time and place for those treats, too).

Still wondering whether a treat is worth it and whether you should just go for it and have the REAL DEAL? Check out: http://whole9life.com/2011/04/whole9s-guide-to-nutritional-off-roading/

And if you’ve made up your mind that one of my SWYPO goodies is just the ticket, then I hope to see you back here soon! (But not DURING your Whole30).

Questions?  Comments?  Criticisms?  I take them all!  Comment below or send me an e-mail per my Contact Information in the side panel.

(High-Protein) Banana-Coconut Cream Pie Bowl (Gluten-free, Grain-free, Refined sugar-free)

Banana-Coconut Cream Pie Toasted Coconut ToppingHave you ever gotten into a snacking rut?  Throwing the same granola bars (or Quest bars) into your lunch bag (or purse or backpack) week after week?  Digging the same badly bruised fruit out of the bottom of your gym bag?  Spooning the same pre-packaged single serving yogurt flavours into your mouth while you peruse Pinterest (look for me!) but pretend to work?  SNACK BOREDOM STOPS HERE!  I’m bringing you all the rich, creamy deliciousness of BOTH Banana Cream Pie AND Coconut Cream Pie in one innocent-looking bowl of high-protein, gluten-free, grain-free, refined-sugar free GOODNESS!

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(High-Protein) Fluffer-Nutter Peanut Butter Banana Bowl (Gluten-free, Grain-free, Refined sugar-free)

Marshmallow FluffOh, Fluff!  That thick, sticky-sweet, syrupy, fluffy, foamy marshmallow-y gooey goodness.  Is it a topping?  Is it a spread?  Is it even a food?  Whatever it is, it sure is delicious (or at least it was – it might be a sad side effect of being an adult that I can’t recall the last time I had a nice blob of Fluff to cram in my craw).  But taste aside, I think we can agree that it is NOT a pinnacle of nutrition.  Well, let me pioneer a high-protein, refined sugar-free recipe that brings you the same satisfying “squish” of Fluff, paired with its classic companions peanut butter (hello, Fluffer-nutter!) and banana!

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(Paleo) Quick and Easy Guacamole (5 ingredients!)

Quick and Easy GuacamoleAh, guacamole. If I’m eating guacamole, I’m eating some version of Mexican food or Tex-Mex and that means I am a happy girl. Sadly, South Korea is a little bit lacking in the Mexican food department (I know, I know – you don’t come to Korea for the Mexican food), although I hear that there are a few notable exceptions for Mexican food restaurants in the foodie districts in Seoul.  At least avocados are readily available at my local Costco.  So, I decided to make my own guacamole at home. When I realized how easily you can make this healthy dip with only a handful of ingredients, I just had to share this recipe with you!

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(Paleo) Simple Apple Cinnamon Roasted Squash Soup (Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Grain-free, Vegan)

Simple Apple Cinnamon Roasted Squash SoupI’m always impressed by a bowl of warm and creamy roasted squash soup.  This soup is no different: the rich, earthy, subtly sweet flavour of the roasted squash is enhanced by a just-right blend of spices.  Adding apple adds an unexpected yet complementary flavour and touch of sweetness to the dish.  No matter what time of year you make it, the taste will make you think of fall with its brilliant-hued leaves and crisp weather.  Savouring a bowl of this soup is just like snuggling into your favourite cozy knitted sweater.

Not only am I impressed by this kind of soup, I’ve also been intimidated by the idea of preparing such a soup.  Not anymore!  I promise that this recipe will show you how easily you can prepare this sophisticated yet comforting dish.

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(High-Protein) Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter Bowl

Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter BowlChocolate for breakfast?  Peanut butter, too?  It MUST be the weekend!  No, not quite?  Well how about a HEALTHY, HIGH-PROTEIN this-can’t-be-good-for-me-but-it-really-is chocolate peanut butter concoction to get us through?  Yes, I thought so too.  Make it for breakfast, make it for a post-workout snack, make it for dessert – whatever you do, just make it!

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Mint Chocolate Avocado Protein Pudding

Mint Chocolate Avocado Protein PuddingI don’t know about you, but it seems like avocado-based puddings are EVERYWHERE these days (and by everywhere, I mean all over Pinterest).  I love me some avocado (sliced and sprinkled with sea salt, in guacamole, on my burgers, in my salads, etc.) and I also love chocolate, so it wasn’t too much of a stretch to get me believing in the avocado-chocolate combination.  I fiddled around with a few recipes, making my own adjustments here and there until I had absolutely nailed the creamy, cool texture of a traditional dairy-based chocolate pudding.  And then, to justify it as a gym-friendly snack, I threw in some protein powder.  Naturally.  You’ll see that I do that with a lot of recipes.  There are only so many egg whites, chicken breasts, cans of tuna, and Quest Bars (yes, there is even a limit to those, sadly) a girl can eat before she needs to get creative with her protein choices.

But, add MINT to the equation (an idea I first got from these ridiculously good No Bake Andes Mint Bars) and it was like the heavens opened with an angel chorus and I was bathed in a warm white light: Hallelujah!  Mint Chocolate Avocado ECSTASY!

I’ll show you what I mean!

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