wellness

CHOCOLATE & PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES

If you love chocolate and peanut butter, these cookies are for you!!

A super simple recipe, that you can be in your belly within half an hour. Anyone who knows me well knows how much I love chocolate, these defiantly get the choc-o-holic's tick of approval! Packed full of superfoods, and will keep you feeling fuller for longer.

  • Gluten Free
  • Dairy Free
  • Refined Sugar Free

Ingredients (makes 16)

1 cup organic Peanut Butter

2 organic/free range eggs

3 tbsp. 100% pure maple syrup (if you want to make them sweeter add a drop of stevia or 1 tsp natvia)

1/4 cup almond meal

1 tbsp. raw cacao powder

1 tsp white chia seeds

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla powder or extract

Pinch Himalayan rock salt

3-4 squares 70%/85%  Lindt dark chocolate, chopped

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Line baking tray.
  3. Mix all ingredients in a bowl until well combined.
  4. Roll mixture into 16 balls, then flatten with back of fork.
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden.
  6. Enjoy!

MORE HEALTHY DOUBLE CHOC-CHIP COOKIES

I have been craving chocolate like crazy (more than usual) these past couple of days, the stress of exams has almost tempted me to opt for a high gluten, dairy packed and sugar loaded hearty choc-chip cookie!!

To save the day I came up with these delicious DOUBLE Choc-chip Cookies! They can be enjoyed in moderation without that yucky feeling afterwards.

These cookies are not gluten free, but are low in gluten. I have used 85% dark chocolate chips, but feel free to use cacao nibs to make them even more healthy!

What you'll need:

  • 1 cup of oat flour (oatmeal)
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 2 tbsp raw cacao powder (or cocoa)
  • 3 tbsp Natvia (I used the baking mix)
  • 2 tbsp vanilla powder (or essence)
  • 1/3 cup 85% dark chocolate chips
  • pinch salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 medium sized eggs
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted

Method:

Preheat oven to 180 degrees

(Makes about 15-17 cookies)

1. Combine oat flour, almond meal, cacao powder, Natvia, vanilla powder, baking powder and salt in a medium sized bowl, mixing until combined.

2. Add in melted coconut oil and egg.

3. Once all ingredients are combined, roll spoon sized scoops of cookie dough into balls and place on a lined baking tray. Softly press down cookies with a fork before baking them in the oven for 10 minutes.

4. Enjoy!!

 

Pantry Swaps - Healthy Habits start in the Kitchen

I believe that the road to better health and happiness starts with the foods we eat. Everything we choose to consume ultimately becomes us.

Here are my top tips and ideas for swapping everyday essentials for foods containing a higher nutritional value. If you are wanting to change your eating habits and have no idea where to start then these top tips are for you.

These are most of  the changes I've made to my pantry gradually over time. Don't forget to make small changes here and there for better results, so it isn't as overwhelming.

You could even use one or two of these suggestions depending on what feels right for your body.

1. Milk  

If you are lactose or dairy intolerant you probably already know there are now many more options available. Some believe the human body was never designed to consume full cream cow's milk. Studies have shown that goat's milk is much easily digested as its structure (on a molecular level) is similar to human breast milk.  To beat the bloat swap your full cream milk to certified organic almond milk, rice milk, goats milk, soy milk; in small amounts (personally I am a bit up in the air about over consumption of soy milk as many studies suggest that it interferes with hormonal levels and it is highly processed) coconut milk, or MACADAMIA nut milk, which is personally my new absolute FAVOURITE thing.

 

2. Swap white bread for brown.

White bread is HIGHLY processed. The wholegrain has been completely stripped of its nutrients (and outer layer) so it pretty much contains no nutritional value, not to mentioned it has been bleached and naturally isn't so 'wonderfully white', nor is it meant to be! Change it up with grainy gluten free bread (if you are gluten intolerant), organic rye bread, sourdough spelt, or buckwheat.

 

3. Butter

Swap butter for either organic butter (in moderation), or nut butters including almond, macadamia, brazil nut or peanut.

 

4. Swap the salt

Again, table salt is highly processed.  If you choose to have salt (in moderation) go for the Himalayan rock salt as it contains essential vitamins and minerals. Another alternative is sea salt.

 

5. Ditch the sugar-rich 'fruit drinks' and fruit juices.

Don't be fooled, some fruit juice and fruit drinks can contain as much sugar as a can of fizzy drink. Check the back of bottles to make sure they only contain 100% fruit.

 

6. Swap the chocolate!

My favourite thing in the world, I know. Instead of milk chocolate, enjoy a few squares of 70-85% dark chocolate, or my ultimate favourite indulgence, raw vegan Pana Chocolate!.. or other organic raw chocolates such as Loving Earth. These chocolates are packed with antioxidants and contain a much higher nutritional content than milk chocolate.

 

7. Refined white sugar

Just as white flour and salt, white sugar is highly processed and is stripped of nutrients. Alternatives to white sugar include organic honey, rice malt syrup, maple syrup or Natvia. All enjoyed in moderation.

 

8. Swap caged eggs to organic eggs

I have my own chickens and let them roam and eat worms and bugs, or whatever is naturally in the environment. When they aren't laying I opt for organic eggs (preferably certified organic) or stop by the local farms and get free ranged. I believe that organic eggs contain many more nutrients and I do not like to support caged eggs.

 

Natvia Sugar Free Baking Launch

This week I was invited to attend and celebrate the Natvia Sugar Free Baking launch at The Classic Cupcake Co. We spent the night baking the most amazing sugar-free cupcakes with the assistance of Anna (The Classic Cupcake's Founder) and had the pleasure of meeting Natvia's co-founder Sam Tew. The sugar-free baking master class introduced a new way of baking using Natvia's new baking product and fabulous sugar-free icing. Natvia is a great natural alternative to sugar and the cupcakes taste amazing! It was a great night to remember and was wonderful to meet people who are so passionate about what they do. I would really recommend this product and have been using it in my baking and beverages for the past 2 years as an alternative to sugar. Lets inspire each other to change this society's eating habits for the better!

The sugar-free cupcakes and master class are now open to the public, its a great class and an exciting way to learn how to cook without sugar. Bookings for the master class are now open: http://theccc.com.au/product/classes/sugar-free-cupcakes/

 

Rich decadent mud cake

This is honesty one of my favourites for the perfect chocolate fix! I usually make it and freeze it to last me a week or so! It's super rich and very chocolaty, also high in antioxidants and skin-loving good fats.

Gluten, dairy & refined sugar free!

 

Ingredients:

1/2 cup hazelnut meal

1/2 cup almond meal

1/2 cup raw cacao powder

2 teaspoons baking powder

4 eggs

1/2 cup coconut oil

1/2 cup almond milk

4 tablespoons rice malt syrup

 

Method:

1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees

2. Combine hazelnut meal, almond meal, raw cacao & baking powder.

3. Add eggs, almond milk, coconut oil & rice malt syrup.

4. Spoon mixture into 20cm round baking tin.

5. Bake for 35-40 mins, or until cooked all the way through.

Icing: mix 200g 85% dark chocolate with 200ml of warmed coconut cream. Icing inspired by Teresa Cutter's chocolate ganache.

 

Apple Cider Vinegar - 9 Health Benefits

One of my favourites at the moment; Apple Cider Vinegar

Over the past few months I have started taking apple cider vinegar in the mornings, after discovering its MANY health benefits!

To name a few..

1. It assists the lymphatic system

2. Helps digestion and improves flora in the gut

 3. It is full of antibacterial properties which make it great for immunity

4. Stabilises blood sugar for longer which can promote weight loss (helps you feel fuller for longer)

5. Can cure hiccups and whitens teeth

6. Rich in vitamins and minerals which make it perfect when your on a detox!

7. Helps to clear up a cold/runny nose, contains potassium which assists in thinning mucous

8. Stops dandruff, apple cider vinegar is acidic and changes the pH levels of the scalp which in turn prevents (yeast) dandruff causing agents growing

 9. Is great for the skin, can be a natural option for skin toner

How to add it to your daily diet:

1. Add 1-3 teaspoons to a glass of warm water, either before each meal or first thing in the morning!

2. After consuming, wait at least 15-30mins before eating.

If possible buy organic. Sold in health food shops and Coles supermarkets in Australia.