Homemade Larabars

I’m always on the hunt for on-the-go bars. Not only should they taste delicious, but the perfect bar must be made of real, whole foods. Larabar gets an A in my book because of their minimal ingredients – real, whole food that we’re all familiar with…which also means that they’re pretty easy to recreate, customize, and they involve no baking whatsoever. Shall we?

Homemade Larabars: (makes 10 bars)

Ingredients:

  • 10 dates
  • 2 generous tablespoons nut butter (peanut, almond, or cashew butter are all great)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • dash of sea salt
  • water as needed
  • totally optional modifications:
    • 1/3 cup oats (for a serving of healthy carbs)
    • 2 tablespoons cacao nibs or dark chocolate chips
    • 2 tablespoons coconut butter or shredded coconut
    • 2 tablespoons hemp seeds (for added protein)
    • 2 tablespoons high quality protein powder (for added protein)
    • 1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup (for picky kids with a serious sweet tooth)
    • replace 1/2 of dates with other dried fruit of choice, like apricots or goji berries
    • 1/4 cup blueberries for blueberry flavor

Add all ingredients (except water) to food processor and mix. If mixture is too dry to stick together, add a teaspoon of water and continue to blend. Once mixture is consistent, transfer to a square pan or glass container and smoothly spread it as evenly as possible. Refrigerate for at least two hours. Remove and cut into square or rectangular bars and remove bars as you wish (ideally with a flat metal spatula.) You can either keep in same container or individually wrap bars for travel. Enjoy a bar as a snack, pre-workout energy boost, or a sweet treat!

One Healthy Breakdown: oh the possibilities with homemade Larabars!

Zucchini + Oats = ZOATS

What’s a zoat?! Much like zoodles are noodles, zoats are oats made out of zucchini (plus, they’re fun to say.) While they’re not the prettiest of breakfast bowls, they sure are delicious and super, duper healthy, without any gluten, dairy, or sugar! What’s better than polishing off a cozy breakfast knowing that you’ve already gotten in a good serving of veggies? Nada.

zoats

Breakfast Zoats (makes 1 large or 2 smaller portions)

Ingredients:

  • 1 zucchini
  • 2 tablespoons oats
  • 1 heaping spoonful of flaxmeal
  • 1/2 mashed banana
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup or honey
  • 1 tablespoon walnuts or nuts of choice
  • optional: 1 egg or 1 scoop collagen peptides or protein powder of choice

Grate zucchini into a saucepan on heated stove top. Add remaining ingredients, mix together, and simmer until liquid is absorbed. Transfer to bowl and enjoy warm.

One Healthy Breakdown: totes for zoats that taste like oats!

Pumpkin Spice Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

This breakfast recipe is not only easy and healthy, but also clearly the epitome of fall. Autumn is surely the season for all things pumpkin spice and apple cinnamon. Breakfast should fuel your day with long-lasting energy and deliciousness. Check and check. Let’s dig in, shall we?!

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup almond milk or water (or milk of choice)
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 apple chopped or 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • dash of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon pepitas (pumpkin seeds) chopped walnuts, or pecans

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Instructions:

Add oats to liquid in pot on stove on medium heat. Once oats begin to cook and thicken, turn heat to low and add all other ingredients. Stir and finish cooking (should take about 5-8 minutes.) Once the oatmeal is thick, remove from heat and let cool a minute before serving. Feel free to top oatmeal (just for visual appeal) with apple slices and cinnamon, more pumpkin, sprinkled nuts, or nothing at all. Enjoy this hearty fall-flavored meal!

One Healthy Breakdown: fueling with fall foods.

Sweet Potato Protein Muffins

These sweet potato muffins were an insta hit! Packed with protein, fiber, and sweet flavor, you can’t go wrong whipping up a batch of these babies for an easy breakfast or snack! Dont’ be afraid to substitute the sweet potatoes for pumpkin as well!

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Sweet Potato Protein Muffins:

Makes 6 regular sized muffins. Note that I used 1 can of organic sweet potato puree; however, you could use 1-2 baked sweet potatoes – equal to about 1.5 cups of sweet potato if you prefer.

Pre-heat oven 350 degrees

Ingredients:

  • 1 can sweet potato puree or the equivalent of 1.5 cups of baked sweet potato (as long as you have a good blender, you can leave skin on – it’s the healthiest part!)
  • 1/2 cup raw rolled oats
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon / or a few drops of vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons almond milk

Instructions:
blend or mix the above (I used Vitamix)
lightly coat muffin tin with coconut oil and pour mixture into pan, filling muffin just over halfway
bake muffins at 350 degrees for 35-45 minutes. Once muffins golden on top, check with a fork or knife to make sure that muffin is cooked through. Let cool and remove from tins. Enjoy and refrigerate leftovers.

One Healthy Breakdown: September tastes oh so sweet!

Blue Maca Overnight Oats

Overnight oats are a great alternative to cereal in the morning and they’re a huge time-saver. Cool, refreshing, and uber healthy, this recipe includes blueberries and maca powder for an extra dose of vitamins, minerals, mood-boosters, energy, and more! Let’s get soakin’, shall we?

blueoats

Ingredients: (gluten-free, dairy-free, and no added sugar!)

  • 1/3 cup plain raw oats (I prefer Purely Elizabeth)
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 teaspoon maca powder
  • optional: 1 tablespoon nut butter of choice

Instructions:

Combine oats, almond milk, seeds, cinnamon, vanilla, and blueberries. Mix and refrigerate in a jar or bowl overnight. In the morning, add your maca, stir, and go to town!

One Healthy Breakdown: super blue superfood breakfast in a flash!

Super Yummy Energy Bites

Introducing your new favorite {super yummy} snack. Great for breakfast, pre and post-workout snack, and sweet treat, these puppies are full of power and flavor! Also, they taste like cookie dough…Just wait. Luckily, you only have to wait 10 minutes to enjoy these cute little nibbles!

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Ingredients: (makes about 15 bites)

  • 1 cup raw oats
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup nut or seed butter of choice
  • 3 dates (pitted)
  • 1 tablespoon hemp seeds
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut
  • 2 tablespoons goji berries and/or apricots (can use raisins or another dried fruit)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon high-quality protein powder (optional for additional protein/post-workout)

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Combine coconut oil, nut butter, vanilla, dates, salt, and half of the oats in a food processor or Vitamix. Once smooth, add the remaining ingredients and pulse until the mixture is consistent, but not completely smooth. Remove mixture and roll into balls about the size of a golf ball. Plate them in the fridge and let sit at least 10 minutes. Devour. You’re welcome 🙂

Optional add-ins for varied flavor: 1 teaspoon matcha powder, 1 drop peppermint oil, 1 tablespoon cacoa nibs or dark chocolate chips, 2 tablespoons pumpkin, 1/4 lemon, 1 slice ginger, 1 teaspoon maca powder, etc. These babies are super versatile – get it?

(*if mixture is too thick to form, add a tablespoon of water or two)

One Healthy Breakdown: enjoy ’em while they last!

Pumpkin Treats Two Ways

These are hands-down two of the best pumpkin treats everrrrr invented. Pumkins are not only a fall staple for their color and taste, they also deliver a rich dose of antioxidants to boot. You can feel good about making these treats over and over and over again.

Pumpkin Nut Fudge: (vegan, gluten-free, and can be made sugar free)

IMG_3116Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup pureed pumpkin (I like Farmer’s Market organic pumpkin or you can make your own)
  • 1/4 cup cacoa powder (or cocoa powder)
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup or honey (optional, omit for sugar free recipe)
  • 1/3 cup nut butter of choice (peanut, almond, and sunflower seed all work great)
  • pinch of sea salt

Instructions:

You’ll need two separate bowls to make the layers. For chocolate fudge, combine cacoa powder, 2 tablespoons coconut oil, and 1 teaspoon maple syrup/honey. Melt briefly (microwave for about 20-30 seconds or use stovetop) and stir fudge until consistent. Pour half of fudge on parchment paper in a square pan. Put in freezer or fridge for 5-10 minutes while making pumpkin layer. For pumpkin filling, combine pumpkin with the remaining coconut oil (2 tablespoons) and maple syrup/honey (1 tablespoon.) In a blender or mixer, add nut butter and sea salt and mix until consistent. Spread this layer on top of fudge once it’s solid and freeze or refrigerate another 5-10 minutes. Once pumpkin layer has solidified, add remaining fudge and refrigerate another 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

*option: for a sweeter treat, simply melt chocolate chips and coconut oil for fudge layer. For a less-rich and more “cookie-like” fudge, add almond meal to fudge layer. Recipe adopted from Detoxinista.

Pumpkin Oat Cookies:

cccIngredients:

  • 1 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 1/3 cup oats
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • dash of pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup or honey
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate chips

Instructions:

Mix or blend all ingredients together, adding chocolate chips last. Scoop spoonfuls of cookie batter onto cookie pan over parchment paper. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes until outside becomes crispy.

One Healthy Breakdown: you’ll be extra thankful for pumpkin this season after tasting these treats!

 

 

October’s Tiny Change: Eat Breakfast

OHH Intro: Breakfast is something OHH REALLY stands behind! No, not only on Sundays, but Every. Single. Day. It’s HUGE…and delicious! So, if you’re not a breakfast eater, take the next few weeks to become one (and, no, a cup of coffee does NOT count as breakfast, sorry people!) It may be easier (and yummier!) than you think after scrolling through Kale and Chocolate’s deliciousness below!)

If you’re just joining us, this post is part of Kale and Chocolate’s year-long #12tinychanges challenge. Each month, we’re implementing one super small, super doable change-over a year it really adds up! You can read about all the changes here and share your progress on Instagram with the hashtag #12tinychanges, and don’t forget, there will be giveaways!

kale-and-chocolate-pb-j-oats-1Since October is my favorite month of the year and breakfast is my favorite (and most important!) meal of the day, I decided to turn our attention to how we take care of ourselves first thing in the morning. After all, it’s hard to feel amazing throughout the rest of your day if you’re getting up when it’s still dark and heading out the door on a cup of coffee and an empty stomach!

When we make the time to eat something nourishing and healthy first thing in the morning, we’re setting the tone for the rest of the day! We’re making ourselves the priority, not our schedules or our to do lists. We’re also balancing our blood sugar and metabolism, giving ourselves an energy source to draw on, and taking a few moments to center ourselves before we venture into the fray.

So with that in mind, here are a few tips that will help you navigate this month’s 12 Tiny Changes Challenge. Let’s do this! If you’re not eating breakfast:

1. Figure out why it’s not happening.
Do you dislike traditional breakfast food? Do you feel like you don’t have enough time? (Number one excuse!) Does eating early in the morning turn your stomach? Once you know your “why”, you’ll be able to make changes accordingly!

2. Try different dishes if you don’t like breakfast food.
You’re not actually required to eat pancakes for breakfast – or eggs or smoothies. Make your own rules! Or just move your breakfast from the sweet to the savory end of the spectrum. (It may also help reduce sugar cravings later in the day!)

sweet-savory-breakfasts-lg3. Prep your breakfasts ahead of time.
In September, our theme for the #12tinychanges was to devote a few hours to meal prep each week. When we think of meal prep, we’re usually focused on getting dinner on the table, but guess what? You can prep for breakfast, too! Make yourself one huge batch of overnight oats, pumpkin pancakes, breakfast quinoa, or berry good oat bars and eat them every morning. Chop and peel all your fruits and veggies so they’re ready for smoothies or whip up a big batch of chia seed pudding. You get the idea, it’s about setting yourself up for breakfast success!

4. If you truly can’t eat breakfast, then have a mid-morning snack ready.
There are a few people out there who really feel sick if they eat first thing in the morning. Try starting with a really mild, simple breakfast (like sprouted toast). If that doesn’t work, make sure you have snacks ready to go for when you do get hungry so that you’ll have energy to get through the day.

If you’re already eating breakfast every day, up your game! Breakfast Criminals has been a major influence and has inspired me to take my breakfast to the next level. If you, too, are already nourishing yourself in the morning, but you want to do even better, give these a try:

1. Double-check that your go-to breakfast is serving you.
Many of us (myself included) are creatures of habit. If you’ve been eating the same breakfast for years, why not make sure that it’s right for you? Who knows – maybe you’d have more energy and focus if you started your day with a protein-rich vegetable frittata, baked avocado with eggs, or seeded almond flour bread. Experiment with different types of breakfasts and take note of how you feel for the rest of the morning. Changing your breakfast can change your day, plain & simple!

2. Make your breakfast more interesting (and nutritious!)
If you’ve found a few breakfasts that are easy to make—and help you feel great—experiment with your faves. There are so many delicious, healthy ingredients that you can sprinkle over and stir into your oatmeal, smoothies, parfaits and more! You can see my long list of favorite nutritional boosts here. Have I convinced you? Breakfast can (and should!) be easy, energy-giving, and delicious. Happy breakfast-ing!

One Healthy Breakdown: let’s make this year amazing, starting with our morning meal!

Apple Coconut Crisp

We’re officially kicking off apple season (hooray!) with a treat that’s super delicious and nutritious; apple coconut crisp! Putting a spin (and a dose of healthy fat) on the old favorite with just three simple, healthy ingredients; apples, cinnamon, and coconut. Yes, it’s totally okay to enjoy a serving or two regularly for breakfast, snack, or a healthful dessert!IMG_2659Makes one large serving or two smaller portions:

  • cover a small cookie sheet or pan with wax paper
  • chop two apples and place cubes on cookie sheet
  • sprinkle apples generously with cinnamon
  • bake at 400 degrees for ~10/15 minutes until apples begin to brownIMG_2656
  • sprinkle apples with shredded (unsweetened) coconut and continue to bake another few minutes until coconut browns
  • serve warm or cool

Yum! It’s great as is, but feel free to mix it up. For a satisfying breakfast, add granola, oats, or some nuts. For a creamier dessert, add whipped cream, whipped coconut cream, honey, plain Greek yogurt, (pictured) or even some vanilla ice cream if you’re going all out.

FullSizeRender(40)One Healthy Breakdown: who says healthy eating doesn’t taste amazing??

Berry Good Oat Bars

Introducing the berry good oat bar, star of the snack scene and best blueberry- loaded breakfast in town! Loaded with nutrients, these babies are chewy like a brownie, but much healthier, with the perfect combination of carbs, protein, and fat. Now, that’s berry, berry good!

IMG_1975In a mixer/blender, combine all of the following ingredients:

2 cups berries (blueberries or a variety of berries, fresh or thawed frozen)
1 cup plain oats
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/2 cup nuts OR nut butter of choice
1 tablespoon flax
1 teaspoon honey

optional additions:
1 scoop high-quality protein powder for extra protein
1/4 cup goji berries
1 tablespoon hemp or chia seeds

Spray a large brownie pan and pour batter evenly into pan. Bake at 325-350 for about 15-20 minutes. Check with a fork, they’ll be soft, but won’t stick to fork. Let cool for at least 30 minutes and cut into individual bars. Serve cool or heated and enjoy any time of day.

IMG_1964One Healthy Breakdown: sounds like berry good plan!