How-To: Make Macadamia Butter at Home

Homemade Macadamia Nut Butter SpoonfulIf my How-To: Make Hazelnut Butter at Home inspired you, then hopefully this How-To will elevate you.  I’ve taken what I’ve learned from making nut butters, including different flavour combinations, and come up with this gorgeous roasted macadamia nut butter with vanilla and sea salt.  (And if the last How-To didn’t inspire you to fire up your food processor – or high-speed blender – then maybe this one will.)

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Banana-Pineapple-Spinach Protein Smoothie (Vegan option)

Banana-Pineapple Spinach SmoothieThis “green” smoothie might be a verdant colour and it might feature some decidedly good-for-you green ingredients, but the taste is nothing but sweet yellow summer sunshine!  Ripe bananas and tropical pineapple will wow your tastebuds and your body will thank you for all of the extra goodness of GREEN tea and GREEN spinach.  Packed with protein, potassium and quick-acting carbohydrates, this is the perfect pre- or post-workout pick-me-up.  It also makes a great “any time” summery snack or meal.

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(High-Protein) Dark Chocolate Cherry Overnight Oatmeal

Dark Chocolate Cherry Overnight Oatmeal SpoonfulCherry blossom season in South Korea is BEAUTIFUL.  Streets and countrysides are lined with trees whose branches are clouds of pink and white blossoms.  As the season progresses, these blossoms drop away and float down like a soft, warm wonderful kind of snow and blanket the shoulders of the roadways.  But what’s even more beautiful, in my mind, is the bounty of fresh, ripe cherries that follows.  Rich, deep-red cherries with shiny, glossy skins are currently lining the shelves of grocery stores, fruit stands and markets everywhere.  Their fresh, tart sweetness is begging to be eaten and I am eating them in abundance!  I eat them by the handful, the bowful, the bagful, and the whole darn boxful!  And guess what happens to pair perfectly with juicy cherries?  Rich, complex, oh-so-slightly bitter deep-dark chocolate!  I was literally mid-drizzle with my chocolate syrup* poised over a bowl of fresh chopped cherries when my latest idea for Overnight Oatmeal sprang to mind.  Dark Chocolate Cherry is decadently delicious and still as healthful, high-protein and wholesome as ever!

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How-To: Make Hazelnut Butter at Home

Homemade Hazelnut Butter

As you know from my previous How-To entries, I’m not exactly re-inventing the wheel over here.  What I do hope to do, though, is provide you with the education and vicarious experience to give you the confidence that if I can do it (little ol’ me!), then so can you!  Everything you could possibly need to know (and more) on making your own nut butters at home has already been published on the web.  So, I’m just throwing my post into the fray and I highly encourage you to check out Tasty Yummies’ How to Make Homemade Nut Butters for even more insight into various other nuts and flavour options, as well as thoughts on soaked nuts vs. unsoaked nuts, raw vs. roasted and all things nut butter-related!

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Skinny Chocolate Zucchini Protein Muffins (Gluten-free, Grain-free, Low-fat, Refined sugar-free)

Chocolate Zucchini Protein MuffinThese are NOT your everyday muffins.  These “skinny” muffins are seriously sensational.  At only 65 calories per muffin (and no, they’re not mini-muffins!) and super low in fat (dare I say “fat-free”?) but packed with protein, there is some serious macro magic happening in this healthy muffin recipe.  Plus, they’re downright delicious, with rich, moist chocolate flavour and the added bonus of high-fiber, nutrient-rich zucchini.  Oh, and they’re free of gluten, grains and refined sugar, too!  Perhaps I should call them “Freedom Muffins”?

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Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie

Peanut Butter Banana Protein SmoothieIt’s time to break out your blender (again)!  I’ve got a delicious new addition to my Smoothie Lineup, and this time it’s the classic combination of peanut butter and banana.  Starting with a pairing like that, how can you go wrong?  Frozen bananas provide natural sweetness and thick creamy texture, and peanut butter protein powder packs a punch of protein with less fat than regular peanut butter.  I’ve also used almond milk as the liquid in this recipe for added creaminess but fewer calories and carbohydrates than dairy milk (you can of course substitute to suit your personal preference!).  It’s quick and easy and tastes great – what’s not to like?

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How-To: Make Unsweetened Applesauce at Home

Ripe Apple“An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”  “You’re the apple of my eye.”  Oh, apples!  So good on their own, so good in desserts (Salted Caramel Apple Bake, anyone?), so good at breakfast (Cinnamon Apple Pie Overnight Oatmeal), so good in soup (Simple Apple Cinnamon Roasted Squash Soup)…the options are endless.  And after all of that shameless self-promotion, what about applesauce?  Well, as you know, I’ve been loving my Vitamix high-speed blender and one of their first recipes I checked out was for Cooked Applesauce.  It’s seriously JUST APPLES.  And any regular jug blender or food processor should do the trick – I’ll show you how in this “How-To” and you can enjoy healthy, homemade applesauce, free of added sugar or preservatives, any time, either as a snack or as an ingredient in a recipe.  No need to go to the store!

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Double Peanut Butter Protein Pancakes (Gluten-free, Grain-free, Refined sugar-free)

Double Peanut Butter Protein PancakesIf you follow me on Instagram (and you totally should – I post mouthwatering food photos, including recipe links, pretty much all day every day!), you’ll know that I am ALL ABOUT my Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Pancakes.  I eat them at least a few times a week and I never get over how incredibly good they are and how you’d never guess that they’re a “protein” pancake.  I won’t even share them with my own flesh and blood (I keep telling The Golden Graham Boy “you wouldn’t like them – they’re not for kids,” as he doesn’t need that much concentrated protein in one serving, nor the touch of Sucralose that comes in my protein powder.  Moreover, they’re for Mommy and I’m not sharing!).

I didn’t think protein pancakes could get any better – but they did.  I wouldn’t have believed you if you told me they could – but they did.  It wasn’t until I ran out of my regular vanilla protein powder and decided to use peanut butter flavour protein powder instead that the magic happened – and boy, it did!  Still incredibly low in fat, carbohydrates and calories, these Double Peanut Butter Protein Pancakes have 43g of protein per serving and are free of grains, gluten and refined sugar.  You’ll never look at breakfast (or pancake supper) the same way again.

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(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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Whole Wheat Banana-Walnut Muffins with Dark Chocolate Chunks (Dairy-free option, Refined sugar-free)

Whole Wheat Banana Walnut Chocolate Chunk MuffinThese scrumptious, moist muffins start with a better-for-you banana bread base featuring whole wheat flour, unrefined sugar and “super-fat” coconut oil and then add in chopped walnuts and decadent dark chocolate.  The whole wheat flour gives them just a little bit more texture and the walnuts and coconut oil mean that they are unbelievably moist and packed with a generous serving of healthy fats to give you lasting energy and satisfaction.  Sweet bananas counter with the sophistication of not-so-sweet dark chocolate chunks – just enough for a taste in each bite.

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