Frozen Strawberry Parfait

Another breakfast item, whoop, whoop! I love smoothies, but sometimes I want them to be thicker and have some crunch to them! To get this effect yesterday, I made a smoothie, but added less liquid to make it thicker and layered it between a nut mixture to give it some crunch. I was also able to sneak some spinach into the smoothie layer too. I know kids are suckers for not wanting to eat greens, but I bet you they would eat this and not even know there was spinach in there (well unless they see you make it). 

I must admit that even though I am loading this recipe under breakfast, I actually made this for lunch because I wanted a strawberry spinach salad, but wasn’t in the mood for physically eating spinach. I go through streaks where I am salad fanatic and then don’t want to be near greens for months. What to do? Well, put greens in something so I don’t even know I am eating them. Yep, yep, just call me a BIG KID. 

At any rate this totally hit the spot! Enjoy! 

Frozen Strawberry Parfait
Serves 2
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Prep Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
Ingredients
Frozen Strawberry Layer
  1. 1 C Frozen Strawberries
  2. 1 C Spinach
  3. 1 C Ice
  4. 1 C Strawberry Greek Yogurt
  5. 1 tbsp Agave Nectar
  6. 3/4 C Pomegranate Juice
  7. 1/2 C Water
Almond Coconut Granola
  1. 1/4 C Almonds
  2. 1/4 C Coconut Flakes, unsweetened
  3. 1 tsp Coconut Palm Sugar
  4. 1 tsp Maple Syrup
  5. 1 C Fresh Strawberries, sliced
Directions
Frozen Strawberry Parfait
  1. Place smoothie ingredients into a high powered blender. Blend on low to get the ingredients to start mixing together and turn to high. May need to stop periodically and mix everything together by hand a few times (or use the plastic mallet that comes with your blender to push the ingredients towards the blade while mixing). Stop when the ice, spinach and frozen strawberries are blended together.
Almond Coconut Parfait
  1. Pulse together almonds, coconut and sweeteners in a small food processor. Chop together until the almonds and coconut are into smaller pieces.
  2. Add 1/2 of the frozen strawberry layer to a glass, top with fresh strawberries and a tablespoon of the granola mixture. Repeat this and add more granola/strawberries to the top.
  3. Serve immediately.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Raspberry Breakfast Tarts

Okay, let’s be realistic. Pop Tarts were my favorite breakfast item growing up. I mean who could resist the Maple Brown Sugar ones? Not me that is far darn sure! So, after going gluten free and changing my diet for the better, I picked up a box of gluten free blueberry pop tarts for Mason. Of course I had to try a bite! Oh man they tasted like cardboard with a jam filled center. Saying they were terrible is a TOTAL UNDERSTAND! 

I knew I could make my favorite breakfast treat TASTE A GIZILLION TIMES BETTER and they do. As of this minute my only taste testers have been me and Mason, but if it is any consolation he ate the entire pop tart minus three bites! He keep saying, “Mom, I yike deez! Der is wazzberry jam in da middle?” These would be even better with some frosting on it (obviously), but I wanted to cut down on the sweets for us. However, if you are splurging definitively go for the icing on the cake too!!  

All right, now it is time for a nap! I am beat after my 40 minute swim and grocery shopping. A little rest will do me some good. YIPPEE! 

Raspberry Breakfast Tarts
Serves 12
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Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
44 min
Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
44 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 C Palm Oil Shortening
  2. 2 C Brown Rice Flour
  3. 2/3 C Potato Starch
  4. 1/3 C Tapioca Flour
  5. 1 tsp Xanthan Gum
  6. 1 tsp Baking Soda
  7. 3/4 tsp Baking Powder
  8. 3/4 C Organic Evaporated Cane Sugar
  9. 1/4 C Agave Nectar or Maple Syrup
  10. 1 tsp Cinnamon
  11. 1/2 tbsp Vanilla
  12. 1 Egg
  13. 1/2 C Raspberry Jam
Instructions
  1. Cream together shortening and sugar together with a hand mixer on medium speed until smooth.
  2. Add in the egg, agave nectar, cinnamon, salt and vanilla and mix together for another minute until combined.
  3. Mix in the remaining ingredients until large clumps of dough forms.
  4. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  5. Roll out onto a flat surface (1/4 inch thick) with a small amount of brown rice flour and a rolling pin. Make shapes with your favorite cookie cutters.
  6. Add the bottom layer to the cookie sheet. Add a teaspoon of the jam to the center and spread out to the edges of the cookie (leaving a 1/4 inch on the edges to press another cookie on top).
  7. Place a second cookie layer on top. Press down with your thumbs around the edges to form a seal. I also pressed the edges down with a fork to make a pattern, but this is optional.
  8. Bake in the oven for 15-18 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
  9. Allow to cool for 15-20 minutes before eating because the jam in the center will stay warm for a while.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Pistachio Energy Bites

The weather in Minnesota has been miserable the last three weeks, but we are finally getting a breather from below zero temperatures this weekend! This is fantastic because I have a 10 mile run on Sunday that I was not looking forward to at all. Okay boring, why am I talking about the weather? Well probably because I can’t think of anything else to ramble on about at the moment. 

I mean really, the other boring thing I could talk about is the manuscript I am writing for the 2015 Global SAS Forum. Last fall I submitted some research on the association between healthcare costs and participation in Fitness Reimbursement programs for a podium presentation at the conference. It was accepted, COOL. So now, I am writing the paper and making sure I sound like I know what I am talking about it :) HAHA. No really, I do know what I am talking about (MOST DAYS). 

BUT…..

Here is my total bone head move and shows you how your brain goes with kids. I was getting ready for my run last weekend and was wrestling with getting my headphones to work with Pandora on it. I kept trying different buttons to get the sound to work and using some choice words of “Oh to HELL, why is this not working.” When all of a sudden I noticed I didn’t even have the headphones in my ears. DUH! So, there you have it. I can get accepted for some advanced research conference (feel a little SMART) and then do something that makes me feel like an IDIOT all in one swoop. Oh good times!

Allright, so now on to the pistachio bites. I made these delicious and I mean delicious treats for my husband. He needs to eat protein with fruits and was sucking down beef jerky, sausage and meats like mad. I worry a bit about the sodium content of packaged meats, so finally I thought, “Aha, I can make him some protein bites!” I made these little nuggets and he loved them. He also took them to the Packers playoff game last weekend to share with some of our friends. They also loved them :) I actually promised I would get this recipe posted for our dear friend, Kelly! So, I want to give a little shout out to her because she is an amazing mom, business owner and just a hoot to be around. Hope these turn out for you when you try them at home lady! 

Pistachio Energy Bites
Serves 18
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 C Pistachios
  2. 1 1/2 C Banana Chips
  3. 6-8 Medjool Dates, pits removed & chopped
  4. 3-4 tbsp Agave Nectar
  5. 1/2 C Almond Butter
  6. 1/2 C Almond Flour
  7. 1/2 tsp Maple Extract
  8. 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
Instructions
  1. Add medjool dates, banana chips, pistachios and agave nectar to a food processor. Chop in the food processor until the dried fruit and nuts have broken down into very small pieces.
  2. Add in the remaining ingredients and pulse together until a smooth dough forms (you will still have finely chopped pieces of pistachio).
  3. Roll together into walnut sized balls. Refrigerate for up to 2 to 3 weeks or freeze for up to 3 months (if they last that long).
Notes
  1. Make sure you buy pistachios out of the shell or you will be shelling pistachios for a good 20 minutes before making this recipe.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Braised Citrus Chicken

We have a ton of meat from our CSA last year that we need to use up fast because the new shares start in February! So, looks like I will be making a lot of soups, slow cooker and beef/poultry/pork recipes in the next three weeks. The next two recipes in the works are a beef pho and some sort of stuffed tenderloin. The beef pho is because I love this soup from a Vietnamese restaurant by my husband’s work. Hoping that I can get mine to taste as good, but I am not holding my breathe considering I usually don’t have as good of luck at making Asian food at home :)  

Aside from dreaming up food recipes, I take my SAS base programming exam on Thursday. I studied last weekend and will be studying again all day tomorrow (minus a few work meetings). I am little nervous that they are going to ask me a ton of behind the scenes processing questions. I know how to write code I just don’t care what is going behind the scene. I write, push a button and boom I get results. The rest is FLUFFY details that bored me while studying. I am sure it will bite me where the sun don’t shine. Just need to get a 70. I can do this!!

My little man also made a wand at school the other day. You know one of those with a star on the end that fairies use. Well anyway, I got to school yesterday and he touched me with the wand and said, “Mommy you are a princess.” Well now did that melt my heart or what! Then he proceeded to take an enormous dump in his diaper on the way home, so I think he was just softening me up for what he was going to do next instead of going in the toilet. LOL! At any rate I just love the things he says! 

Now on to this delicious slow cooked chicken recipe. It is easy as pie to make. Okay I don’t know about you guys, but is pie easy to make! I don’t think so and I love to bake! Seriously the dough is a pain in the BUTT unless you buy it pre-made. Okay that saying doesn’t work in my book, but this recipe is SUPER easy! Just toss the ingredients in the slow cooker and come back 6 hours later to shred it. Oh and, my husband ate 2/3 of this in one sitting. If you have hungry tummies like my house you may want to get a bigger chicken and increase the cooking time 20 minutes per extra pound :) I can only imagine what my grocery bill is going to be when Mason is older!  

Braised Citrus Chicken
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
6 hr
Total Time
6 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
6 hr
Total Time
6 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 3-4 lb Whole Chicken
  2. 2 tbsp Mustard
  3. 1 tbsp Garlic, chopped
  4. 1 Lime, juice
  5. 1/8 C Agave Nectar or Honey
  6. I C Orange Juice
  7. 2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  8. 2 tsp Sea Salt
  9. 1/4 C Olive Oil
  10. 1 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  11. 2 tsp Cumin
  12. 2 tsp Onion Powder
Instructions
  1. Place chicken in a slow cooker.
  2. Mix together remaining ingredients in a small bowl and pour over the top of the chicken.
  3. Cook over low heat for approximately 6 hours or until the chicken starts to fall apart.
  4. Shred and serve with your favorite side dish or even use for tacos.
Notes
  1. If you are following a strict Autoimmune Diet Protocol replace the mustard and cumin with 1 more tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and another 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. These modifications will make the dish less spicy, but it will still be delicious!
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Almond Cranberry Cookies

After only getting four hours of sleep I really needed something protein dense and a little sweet to get me through my workout and my work day! So, I was going to make my apricot cashew cups with cherries instead of apricots, but I thought a cookie would hit the spot better. Also, since I am on day 5 of a 22 day challenge I knew I would get some frowns when I posted a picture of the cookie to our board, but I don’t consider these cookies a non-healthy item! They are free of processed sugars, grains and butter. The fats are almost 100% from nuts, so I just went with it. 

I guess most importantly is I want to encourage people to eat items like this when they are doing clean eating or fitness challenges. I know the goal is to lose weight and these may seem like you are setting yourself back, but how are these cookies different than a Larabar or a protein bar? It is just because they are called a COOKIE that you think, “OH, she (or I) should not be eating that!” WRONG! If you work out and run as much as I do then you should be eating these! 

All right enough of my sermon! Aside from these cookies we are doing great on the home front. Luke’s doctor gave the go ahead for him to eat rice, which is UBER exciting for him. For those who know my husband his lifeline in the past was Asian food, so  when he went on the AIP diet rice was the toughest one! He still can’t have soy though he has to be really careful when he goes to Chinese restaurants and only get steamed veggies with rice and then he adds coconut aminos, which is like soy sauce. FUN TIMES! 

Enough ramblings for one day….I need to get my BUTT to work :) 

Almond Cranberry Cookies
Serves 24
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
45 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 C Almonds, raw
  2. 1 C Cashews, raw
  3. 1/4 C Almond Butter
  4. 2 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening
  5. 1 Egg
  6. 1 1/2 C Almond Flour
  7. 1/4 C Coconut Palm Sugar
  8. 1/4 C Agave Nectar
  9. 1 tsp Sea Salt
  10. 1 tsp Baking Soda
  11. 1 tsp Maple Extract
  12. 3/4 C Cranberries
  13. 3/4 Chocolate Chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add nuts to a food processor and mix until the oil from the nuts starts to break down into a butter. Once this happens add in the palm oil shortening and the almond butter. Continue to process until a smooth butter forms.
  3. Add in the almond flour, baking soda, agave nectar, egg, maple extract, sea salt and coconut palm sugar. Pulse 8-10 times until the liquids are completely combined. You may need to stop the food processor and stir by hand.
  4. Pulse in the chocolate chips and cranberries.
  5. Drop by heaping spoonfuls onto to a cookie sheet (about the size of a golf ball) and bake for 10 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool on the pan for a couple of minutes before transfer to a cooling rack.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Banana Bread Bites

What a great weekend. On Saturday we had our first Christmas party at my Aunt Marie’s house. They live on a farm and have a beautiful old farmhouse. It was fun seeing family and participating in the white elephant gift exchange. Luke got the game Stratego, which is actually a cool gift and I got a head scratching gadget that looked like a whisk from outer space. Oh, what to do with more junk? Anyway, Mason had a blast playing with his cousins and some new toys! I also loved seeing my cousins. We were a close knit bunch growing up so it is great to catch up considering we do not see each other as much anymore. I have been socially isolated myself for a while (reasons why are a whole different topic and why I started participating in Beach Body challenges and became a Beach Body Coach….will get into more of this detail in my 21 Day Fix challenge starting on January 5th), so it was nice to come out of my shell. Thanks again to Marie and Dale for hosting another great party!

After my aunt and uncles’ house we went to Eagle Bend to have Christmas with my Dad (Byron) and his wife Denise (my stepmom). Mason had a ball trying to destroy their gingerbread house and the winter Christmas village. Our dog also decided that it would be a good time to throw up on the bathroom rug and on the carpet in my brother’s old room. We also went out for dinner at the Pizza Ranch for some gluten free pizza (poor Luke couldn’t have any because of the AIP diet). Mason could, but he had two bites of pizza dipped in his ice water. Guess he is trying to be a trend setter! I didn’t follow suit! The thing he devoured was two small cups of ice cream….go figure! Normally, I do not allow him to have dessert if he didn’t eat well, but it was Christmas and grandpa and grandma are allowed to break the rules! 

On an another fun note, as I mentioned above I joined my friend’s Beach Body Coaching team last Friday. Whoop, whoop, so now I am going to start officially running challenges, which are based off of these amazing products: Beach Body Challenge packs and Shakeology. Honestly, I personally haven’t tried any of the Beach Body challenges yet, but have tried Shakeology (YUM to the MAX) and am planning to start the 21 Day Fix on January 5th with Jackie and her group. My husband is going to do the P90x Challenge. There is also a less intensive program called the 3 day Refresh for those who just want to get their feet wet a little before diving in head first. If you want to join let us know so you can be added to the group. I have read numerous success stories of people losing weight, having more energy and just feeling better overall.

I should mention that you DON’T have to buy any of the challenge packs or shakeology to participate in one of our groups! I just have the products listed as a suggestion if you want to try them :) As I test them out I will give you more information and then you can be the judge if you want to invest in them. But I can say is Shakeology tastes amazing (best tasting protein/superfood shake EVER) and it is loaded with superfoods! Check out this ingredient summary to see why I choose to use Shakeology as a protein shake :) Also, I have seen numerous people achieve weight loss goals with their challenge packs! I am not doing it for weight but rather to be at maximum performance for Boston Marathon training. 

Anyway, in preparation for the 21 Day Challenge my brain is brewing up different snacks that I could make. Knowing that I have a sweet tooth and would be craving some healthy goodies during the challenge, I came up with these Banana Bread Bites. They are loaded with protein from the Gluten Free Oats, sunflower seeds and sunflower seed butter. The banana chips and spice mix make them UBER DUBER tasty and remind me of banana oat cookies or banana bread (hence the name)! Obviously the texture is different, but you guys get my drift. At any rate, they just need to get in my belly!

Banana Bread Bites
Serves 18
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 C Banana Chips
  2. 1/4-1/3 C Agave Nectar
  3. 1/4 C Coconut Palm Sugar
  4. 6 Medjool Dates
  5. 1 C Sunbutter
  6. 1/2 C Sunflower Seeds
  7. 1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
  8. 1/4 tsp Cloves
  9. 1/8 tsp Nutmeg
  10. 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  11. 1 tsp Vanilla
  12. 3/4 C Oats (certified gluten free)
Instructions
  1. Add banana chips, dates and sunflower seeds to a food processor. Pulse until all ingredients are chopped into small pieces.
  2. Add in remaining ingredients and continue to pulse together until a thick dough forms.
  3. Roll into golf ball sized bites.
  4. Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or in the freezer for three months.
Notes
  1. Start with a 1/4 cup of agave nectar. If the mixture is too dry then another tablespoon at a time until the dough starts to come together.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Rosemary Beef Roast

Yummy, yummy, yumm-meee! This is incredibly delicious. Seriously after 6 hours of this baby cooking it was incredibly hard not to lift the lid and continue to sneak pieces of the corners of the roast. Even my neighbor, Angie, stopped by to drop off a Christmas card and said, “Oh man, something smells good.” 

Aside from making this dish, I am taking a four day statistical programming course. Yesterday we went over second derivatives…I know, I know you are probably thinking what the Deuce Bigalow is a “second derivative.” It is calculus that I haven’t used for 15 years. Boy did I have to get out the broom and dust off oodles of cobwebs to even remotely understand the first of hour of the course. It felt like an episode of Charlie Brown, “Wa, wa, wa, waaaaa….second derivative….wa, wa, wa, waaa let’s take a break.” I understood 10 minute break, whoop whoop! Today should be a lot better because we are through the methods behind the madness…aka the math going on behind the scenes. Now, we are going to actually focus on using statistical procedures for research studies. I can do that part! 

Well, I have to do some prep work for my course, so peace out! Oh and try this recipe. In the words of the movie “Clueless” (yes, shamelessly one of my favorites)…..It’s da bomb! 

Rosemary Beef Roast
Serves 4
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
10 hr
Total Time
10 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
10 hr
Total Time
10 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 4-5 lb Beef Roast
  2. 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  3. 1/4 C Agave Nectar or Honey
  4. 3 Limes, juice
  5. 1/2 C Pomegranate Juice
  6. 1/2 C Coconut Aminos (or Braggs Liquid Aminos if you are not sensitive to soy)
  7. 2 Sprigs Rosemary
  8. 2 Sprigs Oregano
  9. 2 tsp Sea Salt
  10. 1 tsp Pepper
  11. 1 tsp Onion Powder
  12. 1 tbsp Garlic, finely chopped
  13. 1 tsp Chili Powder (omit if AIP)
Instructions
  1. Add spices, agave nectar, olive oil and liquid to the bottom of a slow cooker.
  2. Place roast on top and cook over low heat for 10-12 hours or until meat is tender (falls apart when trying to pick it up with tongs). Flip meat over every 3-4 hours.
  3. Is that all? Yes, it is that easy!
Notes
  1. Make sure meat is completely thawed before cooking.
  2. I served this with some homemade sweet potato fries, YUM!
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Strawberry Avocado Salad

I am finally home after spending two days in sunny Scottsdale, Arizona for a research conference. Don’t get me wrong being in Arizona was heaven compared to the cold Minnesota weather, but I really missed Mason, Luke and Scylla (our doggy).

While in AZ, I stayed at the Fairmont Princess. Oh man, is that place decked out for the Holiday! They had a Santa’s workshop, choo choo train rides, skating rink and a Christmas light show. I really wish Mason would have been there because he would have had a blast!

After being on the road, I tried to have decent meals but it is hard to find good quality food when traveling! So, I was definitely craving a homemade kale salad for lunch today and came up with this concoction. It was so incredibly delicious that my husband and I polished it off in no time. 

Strawberry Avocado Salad
Serves 2
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
20 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
20 min
Ingredients
Strawberry Avocado Salad
  1. 3 C Baby Kale
  2. 3 C Kale, chopped
  3. 1 1/2 C Strawberries, chopped
  4. 1 English Cucumber, chopped
  5. 1/2 lb. Nitrate Free Bacon, cooked and chopped
  6. 1 C Chicken Breast, cooked and chopped
  7. 1 Large Avocado, chopped
Celery Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette
  1. 3 Meyer Lemons, juice
  2. 1 tbsp Agave Nectar
  3. 2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  4. 1/3 C Olive Oil
  5. 1/4 tsp Celery Seed
  6. 1/2 tsp Crushed Black Pepper
Directions
Strawberry Avocado Salad
  1. For the chicken, I just pick up a free range rotisserie chicken and chop it up to save time. To cook the bacon, add slices to a large frying pan and cook 3-4 minutes over medium heat. Flip the bacon over to cook the other side for another 3-4 minutes or until bacon crisps up in the pan. Allow bacon to cool over paper towels for 5 minutes to remove most of the grease.
  2. Add chopped vegetables, chicken and chopped bacon to a large salad bowl.
Celery Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette
  1. Add salad ingredients to a quart sized mason jar and shake until combined.
  2. Toss with salad when ready to serve.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Blackberry Fig Salad

Today I start a 12 days of Christmas salad challenge with some friends where each day we substitute one meal with a salad. The main goal is to sustain our weight rather than pack on the pounds during the holidays like so many of us do! To kick of this fun-filled event, I made this blackberry and fig salad. Fig newtons are my favorite so my husband and I were joking that we should call this the “Fig Newton” salad or oh gee what did you have for lunch today, “Oh, I had a fig newton salad.” 

At any rate, this salad is delicious and a change of pace from many main stream salads (e.g. boring stuff like garden or Caesar salads). I only say boring because those salads would get old if I had to alternate them for 12 days! 

Blackberry Fig Salad
Serves 2
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
Blackberry Fig Salad
  1. 3 C Spinach
  2. 3 C Mixed Greens
  3. 1/4 C Fennel Bulb, chopped
  4. 1 C Blackberries
  5. 1/4 C Pomegranate Seeds
  6. 1/4 C Dried Figs, chopped
Orange Balsamic Vinaigrette
  1. 5 tbsp Olive Oil
  2. 2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  3. 2 Oranges, juice
  4. 1 tbsp Agave Nectar
  5. 1/4 tsp Sea Salt
  6. Pinch of Black Pepper
Directions
Blackberry Fig Salad
  1. Chop figs and fennel. Toss the greens, vegetables and fruit together in a large bowl.
Orange Balsamic Vinaigrette
  1. Combine salad dressing ingredients in a pint sized mason jar. Shake until combine and toss with salad greens when ready to serve.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Green Tea Maca Smoothie

For my “morning” (I actually made this closer to lunch) smoothie I wanted a BURST OF ENERGY! Actually I don’t really need it because I have been feeling absolutely fantastic from the five day clean eating challenge, but I felt the need to get a new post going on ‘up in here’.

All right, so what the heck is maca and matcha you say? Check out this post related to maca: Pineapple Maca Smoothie. For the green tea I used an organic powdered known as Matcha and here is the health benefits of this superfood from MatchaSource:

  • Matcha Is an Antioxidant Powerhouse – One of biggest the buzz words in nutrition, antioxidants are naturally occurring chemical compounds that prevent aging and chronic diseases. Nowadays, a variety of fruits and vegetables are lauded for their antioxidant properties, leading to a host of products with all kinds of claims. But matcha is unparalleled in comparison. Firstly, matcha is packed with exponentially more antioxidants according to the latest innovation in antioxidant research. Using the testing method known as ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity), experts at Tufts University discovered that matcha possesses an amazing twenty times more so than pomegranates or blueberries. Matchas ORAC rating is a mighty 1300 units per gram, compared to pomegranates 105 units per gram or blueberries 91 units.
  • Energy Booster – One of the most unexpected benefits matcha drinkers experience is a boost of energy through the day. In one study, researchers had thought that this was from the caffeine in matcha, but they found that it was actually the combination of matchas natural properties. Another recent study in particular found that matcha even improved physical endurance by 24%. Even if you arent facing a grueling workout, matcha can help you through the everyday marathon, whether its that project due the next day or getting the kids from school to soccer practice.
  • Calorie Burner – Already nearly calorie free, matcha is a great addition to a weight loss program by tackling the problem from both sides. It boosts metabolism and burns fat. One recent study even suggested that matcha may help burn calories by four times. At the same time, matcha does not put any stress on the body. It doesnt raise blood pressure or heart rate, making it a safe alternative to questionable quick fixes or pharmaceuticals ridden with side effects.
  • Detox Deluxe – Green is truly the color of health. Matcha helps to safely cleanse and purge the body of harmful elements. Chlorophyll the element that gives green tea and other plants their signature verdant color is also a powerful detoxifier, helping to eliminate both chemicals and heavy metals from the body. And because matcha is carefully shade-grown, it is substantially richer in chlorophyll than other green teas, making it a superior daily detox.

Knowing these health benefits is why I tossed both maca and green tea into my smoothie this morning. 

Green Tea Maca Smoothie
Serves 2
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 Bananas
  2. 3 C Spinach
  3. 2 C Mixed Berries, Frozen
  4. 2 Pears, cores removed
  5. 1 C Apple Juice
  6. 1 C Tangerine Juice
  7. 3 C Water
  8. 1 tbsp Agave Nectar
  9. 1 tsp Green Tea Matcha Powder
  10. 1 tbsp Maca Powder
Instructions
  1. Add ingredients to blender and mix until smooth.
  2. If the smoothie is too thick, add an additional tablespoon of water or juice until desired consistency. If too thin, add an additional 1/2 cup of frozen fruit.
Notes
  1. This smoothie was created as a meal replacement (makes 2 - 32 ounce servings). If you are looking for a smaller portion cut the ingredients in half.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
 
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Paleo Cookie Dough Balls

I am doing a four day clean eating challenge with my cousin’s wife, Jackie. She is leading it and so far it has been amazing. We have an open conversation forum on Facebook to share sweaty selfies, what we ate for meals/snacks and talk about any of our struggles for the day. If you ever have an opportunity to do one I would 100% suggest trying it. She also is a consultant for Shakeology. I haven’t tried their products yet, but I order a sampler pack of their chocolate and tropical strawberry vegan flavors. The stuff is packed with more than 70 super-nutritious ingredients, including:

  1. Proteins, Vitamins, and Minerals – to help reduce hunger and food cravings.
  2. Antioxidants and Phytonutrients – to help detoxify and protect the body against free radical damage.
  3. Adaptogen Herbs – to help increase energy and combat stress.
  4. Prebiotics, Probiotics, Fiber, and Digestive Enzymes – to aid digestion and promote regularity.

Also, I have created a dairy free and grain free version of my own for after Thanksgiving, so if you want to recharge your batteries after shoveling in tons and tons of turkey, try my Clean Eating Challenge.

All right, so now going back to the challenge I am doing now. I really wanted some cookie dough and I mean in a bad way. I am thinking it is because it is that time of the month and all I want is sugar. Okay, I know TMI. Well, all women get monthly visits from Aunt Flo whether they like it or not and that B&TGH just isn’t very pleasant most months! So, to curb my cravings I made these Paleo Cookie Dough Balls. They are very, very yummy and TOTALLY HIT THE SPOT! 

Paleo Cookie Dough Balls
Serves 12
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Prep Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 3/4 C Almond Flour
  2. 2 tbsp Coconut Palm Sugar
  3. 1 tsp Vanilla
  4. 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  5. 2 tbsp Agave Nectar
  6. 2-3 tbsp Carob Chips
Instructions
  1. Add two cups of almond flour to a food processor. Mix until it resembles a smooth butter. You may need to stop half way through to push down the sides of the bowl.
  2. Pour in the remaining almond flour, salt, agave nectar, coconut palm sugar, vanilla and carob chips. Pulse together about 10-15 times until a thicker dough forms. Roll into golf ball sized balls.
  3. Store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Quinoa Sandwich Bread

I am starting to experiment with making a quinoa sandwich bread. Why quinoa? Well, technically it is a seed and not a grain. So, if I can pull it off then I will have an allergy friendly and delicious homemade bread for sandwiches, french toast and stuffing for Thanksgiving.

The base recipe for this bread came from the website Cooking Quinoa. The original recipe called for two tablespoons of non-fat milk powder. Milk contains protein and protein is needed as binding agent for baking breads, so this was likely added to replace gluten. Instead of using milk powder I went with psyllium husk powder because these seeds are rich in soluble fibers that absorb water and bind into soft gel. There is debate on whether this is grain, but technically it is not. Psyllium husk powder is derived from the seed of the herb, Plantago Ovato, Since the powder is using only the husk it is not considered a whole grain or a pseudo-grain.

If you are curious about the health benefits (I typically am), according to HealthyEating, “Psyllium husk’s soluble fiber slows the passage of sugars into the bloodstream, moderating the rise and fall of blood glucose after a meal. That’s especially useful to diabetics, making psyllium a valued tool in managing the condition. Additionally, soluble fiber helps lower cholesterol levels, improving cardiovascular health. It’s also thought to help with blood pressure, and the gel contributes to normal stool formation by firming loose stool but softening and moisturizing hard stools.” Many people consume psyllium husk to get things moving. Just remember to eat it in moderation and consume a lot of water or it can plug you up (the side effect of constipation is why this cool kid gets a bad rap)! Water, water, water people and you will be okay. 

Another modification I made was incorporating a leavening agent in combination with an acidic liquid. Again because we are losing gluten, the ability for breads to rise is compromised. However, the chemical combination of baking soda with apple cider vinegar causes CO2 to be created, which helps provides more air into the bread for rising purposes. This is also why you should beat the dough with your hand mixer for 3 minutes before setting aside to rise. The more air in the dough the better result you will get. My bread still came out a little flatter than I wanted because I had to stick it in the oven before allowing it to rise completely (time crunch, story of my life). Despite user error and not following my own directions completely, I have to say this bread is one of the best gluten free breads I have had!

Also, I want to say thank you to Cooking Quinoa for the inspiration! Oh and I should also mention that I only had red Quinoa flour on hand, which is why my bread came out a darker shade. Using traditional quinoa flour will result in bread that is whiter :)  

Quinoa Sandwich Bread
Serves 12
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Prep Time
1 hr 30 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
2 hr 15 min
Prep Time
1 hr 30 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
2 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 C Warm Water, 110 degrees
  2. 3 tbsp Agave Nectar or Honey
  3. 1 tbsp Dry Active Yeast
  4. 1 1/2 C Quinoa Flour, lightly toasted
  5. 3/4 C Tapioca Flour
  6. 1 C Arrowroot Starch
  7. 1 tsp Baking Soda
  8. 2 tbsp Psyllium Husk Powder
  9. 2 1/2 tsp Xanthan Gum
  10. 2 tsp Sea Salt
  11. 2 Eggs, lightly beaten and room temperature
  12. 2 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening, melted
  13. 2 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
Instructions
  1. Mix together the agave nectar, yeast and warm water into a small glass bowl. Let sit for five minutes until the yeast starts to foam at the top.
  2. Lightly toast quinoa flour over medium heat for 5-7 minutes. Make sure you keep stirring to avoid burning the flour. This process will help remove the gritty taste of quinoa.
  3. Add dry ingredients to a large bowl.
  4. Beat together the eggs, shortening, and apple cider vinegar on medium speed for 1 minute.
  5. Pour the egg mixture and yeast mixture into the dry ingredients. Beat on medium-high speed for another 3 minutes.
  6. Set aside bowl in a warm spot for 60-90 minutes or until dough has doubled in size.
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  8. Lightly grease a 9 x 5 bread pan. Pour in dough, set pan in a water bath (cake pan with about an inch of water) and bake for 40-45 minutes. Let bread cool for 5-10 minutes and than transfer to a cooking rack.
Notes
  1. I haven't tried this recipe in a bread maker yet, but when some more I will test it out and let you know.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

Sleigh bells ring….are you listening? In my kitchen, baked goods are glistening. A beautiful sight, my mouth’s happy tonight! Eating some drizzled cookie bars! 

How about a little tune to kick off my holiday baking expedition?

Every year, I make a whole host of different cookies and bars to share with family and friends for Christmas. Normally, I make a mixture of gluten free and gluten filled goodies. However, this year I am only going to make Paleo and gluten free versions because everyone in my house now eats gluten free.

One recipe that I tested yesterday was a chocolate drizzled almond cookie bar. My whole mission was to omit eggs and dairy, considering several folks are allergic, and to use as little sweetener as possible while still making them edible. Mission accomplished because these are DELICIOUS!

Obviously these are not going to make it to Christmas because either myself or Mason will have them devoured before then, but you could make these up to a month in advance and freeze them. In fact, for Holiday baking I make cookies up to 3 weeks prior and just store them in our garage. Now grant, I live in Minnesota and have the luxury of doing that, but if you live in a warmer climate just put them in an airtight container in your freezer. I promise they will still taste great after you thaw them for an hour.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
Serves 12
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening, melted
  2. 2 C Almonds, raw
  3. 1 1/2 C Almond Meal
  4. 1 tbsp Coconut Flour
  5. 1/3 C Agave Nectar or Maple Syrup
  6. 1/3 C Coconut Palm Sugar
  7. 1/2 tbsp Vanilla
  8. 1 tsp Salt
  9. 2 C Mini Chocolate Chips, I prefer Enjoy Life
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add almonds to a food processor. Mix until a fine powder forms. Toss in the melted palm oil shortening and mix together until almond butter forms. Will take approximately 5-10 minutes. You may have to stop and push down the sides to get a uniform mixture.
  3. After butter has formed, pour in the almond meal, coconut flour, agave nectar, coconut palm sugar, vanilla and salt into the food processor. Pulse until a thick cookie dough forms.
  4. Add in 1/2 of the chocolate chips (1 Cup) and pulse together a few more times until the chips are combined into the dough.
  5. Press the dough into a lightly greased (I used a little palm oil shortening) 8 x 8 metal cake pan. Bake for 16-18 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. While the cookie bars are cooling, add remaining chocolate chips to a small microwave safe bowl. Heat up in 30 second increments, mixing in between until chocolate is completely melted. It took 1 minute and 30 seconds for me.
  7. Using a metal spoon, scoop up some of the melted chocolate and lightly drizzle over the top of the bars.
  8. Cool for an hour (if you can wait that long), cut into squares and eat your heart out!
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Autumn Harvest Salad

Yesterday, Mason and I had a date! I asked him what he wanted to do and his response was to go see the “Horseies.” It was rainy and cold, so we settled on visiting choo choos at the mall. Mason was in heaven because we ended up finding a small toy store with a Melissa and Doug Wooden Railway set up. I also scored by finding a Big Boggle game (Happy Early Birthday to me)! Can’t wait to kick Luke’s butt in a game. Especially since we played Yahtzee last week and he beat me four games in a row. Who can be that lucky rolling dice? He just kept saying, “Oh, it is all skills, baby!”  

Other than the toy store, we also found an indoor play area with small slides and cars that you had to pay seventy-five cents to operate. He was having enough fun with them stationary, so I went with it. It was lots of fun and he was a very well behaved little dude!

Before heading off to our date I made this salad for lunch. Amazingly Mason is a BIG salad eater. He especially loves spinach, arugula and kale dipped in ranch dressing. I am not a big fan of ranch, so I made an apple honey mustard vinaigrette. Most the ingredients for the salad came from our CSA.

If you can’t find daicon radishes, you can always use either kohlrabi or white radishes because they are more readily available in most groceries. Same goes for purple carrots, just use orange. If you want to impress people though use purple, because they are gorgeous in a salad with their purple exterior and yellow inside!

Autumn Harvest Salad
Serves 4
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Prep Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 C Chicken, cooked and chopped
  2. 1 C English Cucumber, chopped
  3. 1 C Daicon Radish, chopped
  4. 1/2 C Fennel, chopped
  5. 1/2 C Pepitas
  6. 3 C Purple Kale, chopped
  7. 3 C Arugula
  8. 1 Lemon
  9. 1/4 C Honey or Agave Nectar
  10. 1/2 C Apple Juice
  11. 1/4 C Olive Oil
  12. 1 tbsp Dijon Mustard (omit for AIP diet)
  13. 2-3 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  14. 1/2 tsp Salt
Instructions
  1. Mix together kale, arugula, chicken, cucumber, radish, fennel and pepitas into a large serving bowl.
  2. Add lemon juice, honey, apple juice, apple cider vinegar, olive oil and salt into a quart sized mason jar. Put on the lid and shake the jar until all of the ingredients are combined.
  3. Toss the vinaigrette into the salad and serve.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
  

 

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Chunky Chocolate Cookies

Okay, so I have never in my life made double chocolate chunk cookies. Grant it, I have made about a 1,000 batches of chocolate chip cookies, but never any cookies where chocolate is the star ingredient. Going into my baking adventure I wanted to make chocolate chip cookie dough bites covered in chocolate. However, when mixing the dough it came out a darker shade than I wanted for pictures, so I morphed the recipe into these chunky chocolate cookies by adding in cacao powder and melted chocolate.

Not using egg, very little shortening and no baking soda or baking powder, I fully expected one enormous pancake coming out of the oven. However, as I watched these little babies bake away, I was doing cartwheels across the kitchen floor because they actually looked like a cookie and tasted pretty darn delicious too. I must admit I am not a big chocolate girl either and I think these are yum-tastic. Seriously, at a party if this cookie and a sugar cookie were chilling together on a plate (pending they were gluten free) I would always reach for the sugar cookie. Sorry chocolate I don’t mean to hurt your feelings, but I am sugar first girl :)

In all seriousness, Paleo chocolate lovers should take note because these are delish! I promise they will leave your taste buds feeling oh so fantastic. ENJOY! 

Chunky Chocolate Cookies
Serves 24
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 C Almond Butter
  2. 2 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening
  3. 1 1/2 C Almond Meal
  4. 1/3 C Agave Nectar
  5. 1 tsp Vanilla
  6. 1/2 tsp Salt
  7. 4 tbsp Coconut Palm Sugar
  8. 2 C 70% Cacao Chocolate Chunks
  9. 1/4 C Cacao Powder
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt one cup of the chocolate chunks in a microwave safe bowl in 30 second increments (stirring in between) until done. It will take between 1-2 minutes to melt completely.
  3. Add to food processor along with the almond butter, palm oil shortening, vanilla, salt, cacao powder, agave nectar and coconut palm sugar. Mix together on the pulse setting until a smooth dough forms.
  4. Pour in the almond meal and remaining chocolate chunks and continue to pulse until the dough is thicker and mixed together.
  5. Place walnut sized dough balls onto metal cookie sheets. Bake for 10-11 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before transferring to wire cooling racks.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Shrimp Pineapple Kebabs

Yesterday was our neighborhood Halloween party. I was supposed to go as a beer girl, but my costume (which I ordered from Ebay) never showed up! Sniff, sniff, sniff. So, instead of going as nothing, I decided not to go. I know, I know total party pooper! My husband was trying to encourage me to still go, but this brings me to revealing my personality…

Bare with me for a sec, I promise I will get to it…..

My philosophy professor in college once asked us to write up a brief essay on whether or not we have an open or closed door policy on meeting new people. My answer was neither, I am a revolving door. A revolving door? Yes, I am a revolving door because I am indifferent to people. From my past history, I have a general distrust for people, not really letting them inside until I have evaluated them completely. So, I make them rotate and rotate and rotate until I trust them. Some people get to know me right away, but the majority see only glimpses of me, which is unfortunate because I am loving and funny as shit! My husband is very social, which has helped, but I still go through periods where I am very standoff-ish. Sorry, sorry, sorry….in terms of break up words…..it is not you, but my lame donkey ass!  

All right, so what the heck does this have to do with the Halloween party. Well, large parties put my revolving door mentality into overdrive. Unless it is my own party, the room is filled with people that I do not know or who I do not completely trust. The whole experience puts me into stimulation overload because my brain goes into scanner mode and evaluates the actions, mannerisms and intent of everyone in the room. Sounds kind of crazy, but it can be too much for me! I am not anti-social, but I would much rather be in smaller gatherings or something that involves sports or fishing then I am on my game. Otherwise, I can get really quiet and want to get the heck out of dodge! Ya, so since I didn’t have a costume I didn’t want to stand out for not having costume and didn’t really want to get pushed it my revolving door policy. 

So, if you have ever wondered why I go off for runs by myself or am more independent it is me recharging my batteries and just being me. I am fueled more by independence than social settings. This all used to make me a little self-conscious, but now I just frankly don’t care. I am who I am and lots of people love me. Recognizing all of this, has just allowed me to interact in different ways and try to overcome my shortcomings. Booyah, there you have it, Jess disclosed! 

Enough of philosophical and psychological analysis of myself :) Let’s get down to business….food! This recipe is fresh, delicious and friendly on your waste line. Even though it says it serves four people, it will really only serve two if you have a hungry, hungry hippo husband like I do! I will trade you grocery bills any day of the week! 

Shrimp Pineapple Kebabs
Serves 4
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Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
50 min
Ingredients
Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice
  1. 1 Head Cauliflower
  2. 2 C Cilantro, chopped
  3. 1 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening or Coconut Oil
  4. 1 tsp Salt
  5. 1 tsp Pepper
  6. 1 Lime, juice
Shrimp Pineapple Kebabs
  1. 2 lb. Shrimp, peeled
  2. 3 C Fresh Pineapple, 1 inch chunks
  3. 2 Medium Red Onions
  4. 1 Lime, juice
  5. 1 Lemon, juice
  6. 1 tbsp Garlic, chopped
  7. 1 tsp Ginger, crushed
  8. 2 tsp Salt
  9. 1 tsp Pepper
  10. 1/3 C Olive Oil
  11. 1/3 C Agave Nectar
  12. Bamboo Skewers
Directions
Shrimp Pineapple Kebabs
  1. Add all kebab ingredients (except bamboo skewers) to a large bowl.
  2. Marinate 30 minutes.
  3. Soak bamboo skewers in water while kebab mixture is marinating.
  4. After 30 minutes, place pineapple, shrimp and onions onto the skewers.
  5. Heat oven to broil or grill to medium high heat.
  6. For oven, place shrimp kebabs on a roasting pan (put 1/2 inch of water in bottom of pan) and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side. For grill, cook for 2-3 minutes on each side.
Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice
  1. While the kebabs are marinating, remove the florets from the head of cauliflower. Shred into small rice sized pieces with a food processor.
  2. As the kebabs are cooking, heat up oil over medium heat. Add in the shredded cauliflower, cilantro and lime juice. Cook for approximately 6-8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Serve the shrimp pineapple kebabs over the cauliflower rice.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Kale Blueberry Smoothie

I am catching up on some smoothies I made prior to going on vacation to New York City with my mom and my sister. Boy is NYC fun! While there we visited the Brooklyn Bridge (great view of city from bridge), 911 Memorial/Museum (breathtaking), Statue of Liberty (gorgeous), Ellis Island (spent 2 minutes there & left), Times Square (busy, but very neat) and Grand Central Station (amazing architecture). I would highly recommend seeing everything, but Ellis Island. We literally boarded the same ferry boat that we arrived in because none of it was remotely interesting to my mom, sister and I. If you are a history buff then it would be right up your alley. In all, I had a fantastic time with my favorite ladies! Here is a picture of us having lunch on our first day (well, us minus me).

Mom Katie NYC

 

Now on to the delicious kale and blueberry smoothie. For this smoothie I used purple kale, but you could use any variety. If you are wondering, here is a list of kale’s nutritional benefits (source):

1. Loaded with fiber – Kale will keep you fuller longer, which curbs snacking and keeps your weight down. Diets rich in leafy greens, like kale, have been associated with decreased risks of various cancers, heart disease and osteoporosis.
2. Phytochemical – Kale helps lower the risk of eye related conditions, such as cataracts and macular degeneration, because it’s loaded with phytochemicals (lutein and zeaxanthin). One half cup of kale meets the daily suggested dose of lutein and zeaxanthin (6 to 15 milligrams) for optimal eye health.
3. Vitamin A – Kale contains this antioxidant, which boosts immunity and maintains healthy bone structure.
4. Vitamin K – Kale produces osteocalcin, which is a protein our body uses to strengthen bone composition. Women with low intake of Vitamin K have significantly lower bone density and are at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis.
5. Vitamin E – This antioxidant keeps our minds sharp by removing free radicals from our brain cells!

Kale Blueberry Smoothie
Serves 2
Hints of lemon, blueberries, cherries and kale make this a delicious treat! I made this for breakfast, but really you could make it for any meal or for a snack.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 C Cherries, frozen
  2. 3 C Blueberries, frozen
  3. 3 C Purple Kale
  4. 2 Apples, cores removed
  5. 2 C Pomegranate Juice
  6. 2 C Water
  7. 2 Lemons, juice
  8. 1 tbsp Agave Nectar (optional)
Instructions
  1. Add ingredients to blender and mix until smooth.
  2. If the smoothie is too thick, add an additional tablespoon of water or juice until desired consistency. If too thin, add an additional 1/2 cup of frozen fruit.
Notes
  1. This smoothie was created as a meal replacement (makes 2 - 32 ounce servings). If you are looking for a smaller portion cut the ingredients in half.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Peach Cilantro Salsa

Peaches galore….recipe number 3 in an attempt to use up 20 pounds of fresh peaches! So, I am not a big tomato salsa girl, but when you add peaches and agave nectar it totally throws a curve ball into my opinion! This is by far my favorite salsa recipe and I think it would be wonderful with grilled halibut. In fact, if I can find any fresh halibut in Minnesota (wow, do I miss fresh fish from Alaska…I was too spoiled) I will make it. 

Peach Cilantro Salsa
Serves 12
Fresh peaches, farm-fresh tomatoes and cilantro from our garden work well in this fresh and fabulous salsa. This salsa would be a perfect topping for grilled fish or pork carnita tacos.
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 Peaches, pits removed and chopped
  2. 2 Tomatoes, chopped
  3. 1 Jalapeno, finely diced
  4. 1 C Cilantro, chopped
  5. 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  6. 1 tbsp Agave Nectar
  7. 2 Limes, juice
Instructions
  1. Combined chopped peaches, tomatoes, jalapenos and cilantro into a medium size bowl.
  2. Stir in lime juice, agave nectar and salt until combined.
  3. Serve with chips, tacos or grilled fish.
http://barerootkitchen.com/

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Peach Crumble Bars

My mom dropped off a 20 pound box of peaches on Sunday. Wow, are they delicious, but man oh man what I am going to do with them all? Mason and I have managed to eat a pound, tomorrow I am making a peach salsa with sweet/spicy pork carnitas and a peach/cherry green smoothie, but despite these efforts I was still be staring at 17 pounds of peaches! So, to use up some more peaches, I made these Gluten Free/Paleo peach crumble bars. They are a little bit tedious to make, but worth the effort!

Peach Crumble Bars
Serves 16
Do you pounds of fresh peaches? Well try this delicious grain-free bars!
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
Ingredients
Almond Crust
  1. 3 1/2 C Almond Flour
  2. 1/3 C Agave Nectar
  3. 1/2 C Coconut Oil, melted
  4. 1 tsp Sea Salt
Peach Cinnamon Filling
  1. 3 tbsp Arrowroot Starch
  2. 1 Lemon, juice
  3. 1 tsp Cinnamon
  4. 6 Ripe Peaches, pits removed and chopped
  5. 1/4 Agave Nectar
Cinnamon Crumble
  1. 1 1/2 C Almond Flour
  2. 1/3 C Coconut Palm Sugar
  3. 1/2 tsp Salt
  4. 1 tsp Cinnamon
  5. 3 tbsp Coconut Oil
Directions
Almond Crust
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a 13x9 pan with parchment paper.
  3. Mix together almond flour, melted coconut oil, salt and agave nectar in a food processor.
  4. Press dough evenly onto the parchment paper and bake for 10-15 minutes.
Peach Cinnamon Filling
  1. Remove the pits and chop up the peaches. Add in agave nectar, cinnamon and lemon. Cook over medium heat for 20 minutes until peaches start to break down slightly.
  2. Mix in the arrowroot powder until thoroughly combined.
  3. Puree peach filling with an emulsion blender until large peach chunks are broken down.
  4. Pour peach mixture over cooked crust. Smooth out with a spatula.
Cinnamon Crumble
  1. Using a hand-held blender, mix together almond flour, salt, cinnamon, coconut oil and agave nectar.
  2. Sprinkle over the top of the peach filling and bake for an additional 40 minutes.
  3. Remove from the oven and allow to completely cool before serving.
  4. Store them in the refrigerator or freezer.
Adapted from Ditch the Wheat
Adapted from Ditch the Wheat
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Fudgy Zucchini Brownies

Zucchini, zucchini…I am swimming in zucchini from my garden. I swear I am going to start having nightmares about being held at “gun” point by a zucchini. So, similar to previous posts I am trying to post recipes that are easy and use up some of those pesky, but yummy zucchini!

In efforts to not waste anything, my latest conquest was these fudgy zucchini brownies. I am proud to say they were a success! The best part about these delightful bars is they are Paleo/Gluten-Free friendly and use minimal sweeteners. Plus, the almond flour is higher in protein than gluten-free flour blends and traditional white (wheat) flour, making them a more nutritionally dense grain-free alternative.

Fudgy Zucchini Brownies
Serves 9
Everyone who has a garden struggles to use up zucchini. Instead of going the savory route, how about throwing some finely shredded zucchini into some dark chocolate brownies.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
55 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
55 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 C Almond Flour
  2. 1 tsp Baking Soda
  3. 1 tsp Sea Salt
  4. 10 Medjool Dates, pitted
  5. 3 tbsp Agave Nectar
  6. 2 C Zucchini, finely shredded
  7. 1 tsp Vanilla
  8. 4 oz. Dark Chocolate
  9. 1/2 C Mini Chocolate Chips
  10. 3 Eggs
  11. 1/2 Spectrum Vegetable Shortening
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix together almond flour, salt and baking soda in a food processor for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add in the dates and chocolate to the flour mixture and mix until a course batter has formed. Will take another couple of minutes to break down the dates.
  4. Put the remaining ingredients into the blender and mix until a smooth batter has formed.
  5. Pour batter into an 8x8 pan and bake for 40 to 45 minutes.
  6. Let the brownies cool for an hour before serving.
http://barerootkitchen.com/

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