Well, whoever said it was very very wrong! You won’t find me eating anything bland or tasteless here.
If you’ve ever had a Kind Bar and/or a Chewy Quaker Granola Bar than you will be able to imagine combining those two flavors and getting THIS magnificent bar.
I’m truly nuts about these granola bars!
See what I did there… nuts.
Hahaha, sometimes I like to think I’m funny.
These bars are the perfect combination of chewy and crunchy, as well as sweet and salty. You can’t go wrong!
I mean come on…
Chewy chocolate granola bars with crunchy nuts and sweet honey?!
This granola bar is what dreams are made of!
Nuts For Chocolate Granola Bars
2 tbsp chia seeds
1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup cashews
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/3 cup pistachios
1/2 cup almonds
1 cup puffed rice cereal
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup quick oats
1 tbsp pure vanilla
1/4 cup raw unfiltered honey
1/2 cup brown rice syrup
How to make…
Step 1: In a large bowl combine all the dry ingredients. This includes the chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, cashews, sunflower seeds, pistachios, almonds, puffed rice cereal, cinnamon, dark chocolate chips, dried cranberries, and quick oats. Set aside.
Step 2: In a saucepan on high heat bring all wet ingredients to a boil. This includes the vanilla, honey, and brown rice syrup.
Step 3: Once the wet ingredients have come to a boil quickly remove it from the heat as it hardens quickly.
Step 4: Pour the hot mixture over the dry ingredients you set aside previously folding it in until all the dry ingredients are completely covered and the chocolate chips have mostly melted.
Step 5: Transfer the mixture into an 8×8 baking dish lined with parchment paper. You’ll want extra parchment paper hanging over the sides of the pan because this will make the bars easier to take out.
Step 6: Press the mixture down firmly and allow to cool for 40+ minutes at room temp or 25+ minutes in the fridge if you can’t wait!
Step 7: Remove the granola bar mixture by holding the parchment paper and placing on your counter top or any flat surface.
Step 8: Cut the mixture into whatever size granola bars you desire.
I got you covered! These brownies are the perfect mix.
Don’t tell me you still use that brownie mix from your grocery store…
This recipe is just as easy!
No, really! It’s fast, just as delicious (if not more), and uses ingredients you probably already have around the house.
All I’m sayin’ is your classic brownie recipe just got an upgrade!
Let’s get to the recipe!
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups unbleached white all purpose flour
1 tsp pink salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup grass-fed butter (softened)
1/3 maple syrup
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 semisweet chocolate chips
First, preheat your oven to 325 degrees and grease an 8×8 pan.
In a medium bowl mix together all your dry ingredients. This includes the unbleached white all-purpose flour, pink salt, baking soda, coconut sugar, and unsweetened cocoa powder.
In a separate larger bowl beat together the butter, maple syrup, pure vanilla extract, and eggs.
Now add the dry mixture a little at a time folding it into your wet ingredients.
When combined it should look as pictured below.
You will need to take your greased 8×8 baking pan and add the batter to it. (The batter will be thick, that’s what you want.) Make sure you take the back of a spoon to level out the batter or your brownies won’t bake correctly.
Lastly, sprinkle the chocolate chips on top of the batter before putting the brownies into the oven. Bake them for 30-35 minutes (less if you like them more on the fudgy side) or until a toothpick comes out clean.
The combination of chocolate and banana are like the combination of chocolate and peanut butter… you can’t go wrong!
I make this exact recipe EVERY week so I never have to go without it.
I wish I was kidding, but it’s just too good not to have!
If you want a moist and filling banana bread with a decadent chocolate chip topping that will leave you wanting more with every bite you take, you’re in the right place. This recipe is made with wholesome ingredients so you’ll be left satisfied with how it tastes and how it makes you feel.
Let’s get to the recipe!
3 ripe bananas
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup butter (softened)
3/4 cup coconut sugar
1/2 tsp pink salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 cups unbleached white all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
*optional* 2 scoops unflavored collagen powder
*optional* a sprinkle of old fashioned oats on top (garnish)
First, you’ll want to preheat your oven to 325 degrees and grease a loaf pan.
In a bowl cream together the butter and coconut sugar.
In another bowl beat or mash the bananas until there are no clumps.
Once there are no clumps stir the bananas into the butter and sugar mixture.
Then add in the egg and vanilla.
In a separate bowl stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, pink salt, and cinnamon. (If you want to add the collagen this would be when you add it.)
Then, slowly fold your dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until they’re completely combined.
Pour the batter into the previously greased loaf pan topping with the chocolate chips and a sprinkle of oats (if desired).
Have you ever walked into the grocery store wondering what you should buy organic and what’s okay to skip out on? Buying organic can get expensive so I find it helpful to only buy organic when it’s most necessary.
Have you been there? If you have, I’m here to help!
Something I’d like to mention is that when I’m shopping for food I always bring a list with me. This helps me not only remember everything I need but also helps me save a lot of time and money. Beside my produce items, I write an ‘O’ so I remember to buy it organic, or a ‘G’ so I know I can buy it generic.
How do I know what to buy organic?
I use a list called the “Dirty Dozen.” The Dirty Dozen is a list of 12 fruits and vegetables that contain the highest amount of pesticides. This is why they should be purchased organic.
Below I have listed the “Dirty Dozen” in the order of their pesticide content. 1 containing the most pesticides and 12 having the least.
Sweet Bell Peppers
The EWG (Environmental Working Group) puts out an updated list every year with the top 12 fruits and vegetables that are swimming in pesticides, and this was 2018’s.
To stay up to date you can go to the EWG’s website.
I hope this helps you prioritize buying these particular produce items organic, while also being able to feel good about buying other produce generic if you please.
If you would have asked me this 10 different times over the past ten years my answer would have been different every single time.
I am finally at a point in my life where I have made peace with food.
You may be thinking, what do you mean? Peace with food…? It’s just food?
Well, for many years that wasn’t the case for me. Food was attached to my self-worth. I thought that labeling what I was eating, how I was eating, or how much I was eating determined what kind of person I was. Of course, that wasn’t and isn’t at all correct, but that’s the state of mind I was in.
I will get into more detail regarding my journey with food at another time.
If you can imagine my headspace back then compared to my head space now, it’s really night and day.
How did I get to this point? I found intuitive eating. Intuitive eating is a large determinant of how I made peace with food and is now the core of my food philosophy.
What is intuitive eating?
It’s not a diet or a certain way of eating. It’s in the simplest terms listening to your body, and eating like you did when you were a child. When you were a child you didn’t second guess when you were hungry, you just ate. When you were full, you stopped. When you wanted a cookie, you had it. When you wanted carrots, you ate them. When I think of my food philosophy I think of going back to my roots. I think of myself as a whole being, and honoring my mind, body, and soul. I believe that as humans we experience life in very unique ways and that the food we eat is part of our human experience.
Intuitive eating is important if you want to break free from the constant dieting cycle like I did.
There are 10 steps to help guide you on your journey to intuitive eating, and these are all steps I implemented in my personal journey. When you read these steps, keep in mind that breaking up with dieting can and will be just as messy as dieting. When you decide to stop dieting and stop trying to make yourself smaller you start going against everything society is telling you to do. You’re going to be on the outside looking in, and it’s going to feel messy and confusing. Everyone is dieting, wants to diet, wants to change their body in some way, or participates in body shaming themselves and/or others. When you decide to do the opposite it might feel strange, and that’s okay. Give yourself grace. This is a journey. These steps may not occur in order for you, but they’re all important.
Reject the diet mentality. The diet mentality won’t benefit you, ever. Diets are made to fail, in fact, 95% of diets fail. Diets make you feel restricted and can cause mental & physical exhaustion. When rejecting the diet mentality it’s important that you’re surrounding yourself with social media accounts, books, and friends that make you feel good about yourself and remove yourself from situations that no longer serve you.
Honor your hunger. Realize it’s normal to be hungry. You need food to survive just like you need water and oxygen. It’s a biological need that has to be met. If you’re hungry, eat something.
Make peace with food. This is when you have to change your dialogue around food. There are no good or bad foods. You are neither good nor bad for eating a certain food. Food is just food. When making peace with food it’s also important to discuss the scarcity versus abundant mindset when it comes to food. When a person is experiencing scarcity their body believes its the last time they will be able to have a certain food, so they overeat. This happens often with dieters and can also lead to the “getting back on track” train which additionally comes with guilt for what they ate. It’s quite a terrible mindset to be stuck in. However, when a person has an abundant mindset around food they believe that those foods will always be there. If they want some they can have what they please until they’re satisfied and then move on. They also believe that they don’t have to have that food in that given moment because it’s not going to go anywhere.
Challenge the food police. The food police can be social pressures, family/friends, magazines, or social media. The food police are everywhere and it’s crucial to challenge them. The food police may even be the thoughts in your head about food being “bad” or “good.” That also goes back to why you feel that way and often times it’s because of society’s obsession with shrinking yourself and dieting. The food police will try to tell you that the cinnamon roll is bad, and the salad is good but the truth is they’re both food and either one is fine.
Feel your fullness. This is when the hunger-fullness scale can really help you. If you don’t know what the hunger-fullness scale is it’s a scale from 1-10 on levels of hunger and fullness. 1 being the most hungry and 10 being the most full. Tuning into how full you are is just as important to tuning into how hungry you are. Diet culture has engraved into our minds things that aren’t important like meal timing. If you aren’t hungry why eat more than comfortable? If your body is telling you it’s full, listen. If you’re having a hard time telling if you’re full or not, in the beginning, it can be helpful to take breaks while eating to check in with yourself. How are you feeling? Are you enjoying the food? How does it taste? Are you still hungry? Are you full? Checking in with yourself is so helpful when discovering your fullness levels.
Discover the satisfaction factor. This is such a beautiful part of intuitive eating when food is enjoyed simply to be enjoyed. Like I said before, food is a huge part of the human experience and I believe it’s one of the great joys of life. Food can be so gratifying. You don’t want to eat a meal just because it’s “fuel” for your body, you also want to enjoy it and feel satiated. If you eat food simply for nutrients you will likely want more food to leave you feeling satisfied and that can cause overeating.
Cope with your emotions without using food. I feel like this one is tricky. While I believe it’s important to deal with your emotions without food, I also think it’s incredibly normal and okay to find comfort in food. First, implement forms of self-care that make you feel good that don’t involve food. But if you still want the ice cream and it makes you feel better, I think that’s okay too. Give yourself grace, but also realize it’s important not to solely rely on food to be your source of comfort.
Respect your body. This is often where I find it to be the most difficult. It’s easy to give this advice, but not as easy to take it yourself. I found that respecting my body and accepting my body was easier said than done. I had to let go of the perfectionist mindset, let myself be human and have flaws, and speak to myself and about my body the way I would speak to a dear friend. I found that I would never speak to a friend the way I spoke to myself, so why was I?
Exercise-feel the difference. This has changed my life. Instead of exercising in a way you feel you should be, or in a way that you always have, try exercising just to feel good. Exercise in a way you truly enjoy. Step away from why you’re doing it aesthetically, how many calories you’re burning, etc and just focus on movement that makes you feel good.
Honor your health with gentle nutrition. This is what I like to call mindful eating. I would urge this to be your last step when becoming an intuitive eater because I think it organically occurs after all the other steps have been worked on. Gentle nutrition is listening to your body but also being aware of what you have eaten and making sure you’re giving your body enough nutrients.
I practice intuitive eating and mindful eating on a day to day basis. I’m constantly checking in with my body, honoring myself as a whole, and making sure I have balanced and delicious meals/snacks whenever I’m hungry. That is my food philosophy.