Tasty Paleo Blueberry, Courgette and Chia Seed Muffins & Recipe

Blueberry & Courgette Muffins

Who says muffins are bad for you?  The kind you buy at Costa with your coffee might be detrimental to a healthy diet, but these ones definitely won’t be!  You don’t have to sacrifice taste for healthy food as these muffins will prove, plus I’ve listed just some of the health benefits below.  So, throw away the junk and feast on these gorgeous refined sugar free, gluten free and dairy free muffins…

Courgettes:

  • A good source of Potassium, a heart friendly electrolyte which helps in lowering blood pressure by countering the pressure-effects of Sodium.
  • They contain moderate amounts of folates (important for cell division and DNA synthesis.
  • Contain moderate levels of B-complex vitamins such as Thiamine, Pyroxidine, Riboflavin and minerals like Iron, Manganese, Phosphorius and Zinc.
  • A good source of dietary fibre – helping with food transit through the intestines and offering some protection against certain bowel cancers.

Blueberries:

  • High in phytonutrients functioning as anti-oxidents and anti-inflammatory compounds in the body.
  • Potential benefits for the nervous system and brain health.
  • Evidence they can improve memory with regular consumption.
  • Low on the glycemic index scale (GI), therefore having a favourable impact of blood sugar levels.

Chia Seeds:

  • High in protein
  • High in fibre
  • Contain Calcium, Manganese, Magnesium and Phosporus
  • Contain a decent amount of Zinc, Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Potassium, Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) and Vitamin B2
  • Contain Omega-3 fatty acids

Baobab Powder

  • Very high in Vitamin C
  • Rich in Potassium, Calcium and Iron
  • Contains plenty of B-Vitamins, Magnesium and Anti-oxidants

Medjool Dates

  • Good source of insoluble and soluble fibre – which can significantly lower cholesterol naturally
  • Natural energy booster
  • Good for constipation relief
  • Packed full of vitamins, minerals and fibre

To keep these muffins gluten free I have used almond four and coconut flour.  If you can’t eat almonds they can be made by substituting with more coconut flour and tapioca flour.

I try to substitute sugar for Medjool dates in my recipes because, although they are sweet, the sweetness is natural and they do offer some health benefits, whereas sugar does not.

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Beetroot Dark Chocolate Brownies…Taste like Oreo’s, only good for you!

beetroot chocolate brownie

If you like Oreo’s you are going to LOVE these beetroot chocolate brownies.  I don’t eat oreo’s anymore…one look at the ingredients stops me in my tracks.  I don’t eat that sh*t, not now, no way jose!  Do you know what’s in an oreo??!  Well let me tell you, it’s CR*P! There’s no nutrition in an oreo…full stop.

Ok, I’ve said my piece, but we all like a chocolate treat don’t we? However, if like me you don’t want to put your health in jeopardy, I have the solution.  These beetroot beauties are gluten free, dairy free and refined sugar free.  They are indeed still a treat, so please don’t think I’m saying it’s ok to sit on the sofa and stuff your face! I have used medjool dates for the sweetness because at least you are getting some nutrition from them, details of which you can find here.  I’m not a vegan so there are eggs in this recipe, but I’m sure any vegan will have a substitute up their sleeve 🙂

For the fat I use coconut oil…you won’t find anything as ghastly as margarine in any of my recipes…just pure, beautiful coconut oil.  Research shows that coconut oil can help protect against Alzheimer’s.  If you’re interested click here to read the article.

For the ‘flour’ part I use almond flour, which is basically ground almonds and coconut flour.

I believe this recipe is a show stopper.  I think you will be impressed and all those people who gloat at me, whilst eating a Ginsters pie, a packet of crips, and a bag of chocolate buttons washed down with a bottle of lucozade (you know who you are)…I challenge you to tell me this recipe doesn’t taste like it’s BAD for you!

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Paleo Inspired Carrot Cake Muffins

Carrot cake

I’ve wanted to share this recipe for a while because it’s one of my favourites and it’s so easy to make.  From a health point of view, there’s no refined sugar, dairy, grains or gluten. However, let me just say this does not compromise the taste in any way.  This is a satisfying recipe even if you don’t have any known intolerances to the foods I’ve mentioned.

The original recipe came from the website Primally Inspired, but as with most recipes I had to tweak it a little bit to make it my own (I can’t help myself!).  The only sweetness in comes from medjool dates, plus the carrots.  You won’t find yukky, inflammatory margarine in these beauties either…just good quality coconut oil.  I prefer to use odorless coconut oil which you can buy here

These are a much healthier carrot cake alternative to feed the family.  They’re tried and tested on Jez and his pilots…I can safely say they went down a treat 🙂

Even the icing is dairy and refined sugar free, it’s a winner!

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Gluten Free Hot Cross Buns for Easter

Since it’s Easter I thought I would share this tried and tested recipe for a lower carb, gluten free version of the hot cross bun.  Ok, in the photo I missed out the cross on the buns, but I guess it doesn’t really matter!

FullSizeRender hot cross buns in tin

Since there is no wheat flour and hence no gluten in this recipe, don’t expect them to be just like a normal hot cross bun, they are a bit heavier but the taste is still great, I promise you.  They are delicious toasted with a little goats butter (I cant tolerate dairy, including butter unfortunately).

Continue to the recipe→

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Paleo Banana Bread-Cake Recipe

This as a fab fitness food.  It’s not too sweet, so it won’t give you a sugar rush and then a crash afterwards.  Brilliant for fitness fiends on-the-go.  A piece of this keeps me going for a good 2-3 hours when I’m really in a rush and don’t have time for a sit down meal…or even as a snack with afternoon tea, I am British after all 🙂

 

banana cake bread

 

Paleo Banana Bread-Cake Recipe

1 – 1.5 Cups of Almond Flour/Meal

1/3 Cup of Extra Fine Almond Flour (this is slightly drier than regular almond flour, or you can use coconut flour

3 eggs

2 Ripe Bananas (if you prefer the cake sweeter use very ripe bananas)

1 tsp Baking Powder

1/3 cup Coconut Oil (melted)

1 tsp Vanilla essence

1/4 tsp Pink Himalayan Salt

 

Method

Place the bananas, eggs, vanilla essence and melted coconut oil in a food processor and whiz until blended.

Add the almond flours, baking powder and salt and blend again until you are left with a mixture that resembles a thick batter.

Pour into a silicone bread mold, place on a baking tray and bake (in a fan oven) on 175 degrees C for about 55mins – 1 hour.

 

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Cashew and Almond Energy Balls

If you like the taste of caramel you’ll love these!

Cashew & Almond Energy balls

These are super easy and quick to make.  They are quite sweet by my own taste, but this could be adjusted by using less dates and maybe a bit more coconut oil instead.

Image 1 Cashew & Almond Energy balls being made

As you can see I am quite a messy cook, something Jez is always accusing me of 🙂 …and I have to agree with him!

Anyway here’s the list of ingredients;

Ingredients – Makes 18 Balls

1 Cup of Cashews

1/2 Cup Almonds

6 Dates (Substitute less dates for coconut oil if they are too sweet)

1/4 Cup Coconut Oil

Method

Place the nuts in a food processor and whiz until chopped.

Add the dates and do the same until it resembles crumbs.

Add the coconut oil and whiz again.

Take the mixture out, roll into balls, put them on a plate and place in the freezer for 1-2 hours until they are set.

Store in the fridge and try not to eat them all in one go!

 

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Going paleo…Pancakes for breakfast anyone?

 

Paleo pancakes with arrowroot powder 2

 

Breakfast can be a bit of a pain sometimes…depending on how hungry you wake up.  Sometimes I wake up and I don’t eat until about 10.30 because I’ll usually do a workout first thing.  However, today I have a cold so I’m not exercising and I could so easily have devoured a big piece of toast!

Having been away for the weekend and not having access to my usual foods, my skin has erupted around the jaw area (I think due to dairy and possibly wheat).  This is a good motivator to stay on track with the right foods in normal circumstances.

I’ve found the best alternative to toast is to make paleo pancakes…all you need are eggs, arrowroot powder, koko coconut milk, 1/4 tsp baking powder and a pinch of sea salt.  Don’t bother using coconut flour, I’ll tell you now, it doesn’t work!  Coconut flour absorbs too much liquid which makes them crumble – it doesn’t taste isn’t too good either.

For my Paleo Pancakes Recipe made with Arrowroot powder click here

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Paleo Chocolate Brownies – Gluten and Grain Free, Enjoy!

Having your cake and eating it!

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I won’t lie, I love cake…I also love biscuits, not all the time, but sometimes you just feel like eating a piece of cake or a biscuit.  However, I don’t like the ingredients in processed, shop bought crap, so the only thing to do is make my own.  These chocolate brownies are totally delicious and you wouldn’t know they don’t contain any gluten or grains.

The recipe I’m sharing with you is slightly adapted from one I found online at Elena’s pantry.  I prefer my cakes to be a little less sweet, so I didn’t add the stevia and reduced the amount of dates.

Paleo Brownies

Ingredients

1 Cup Almond Flour

1/4 Tsp Celtic Sea Salt

1/4 Tsp baking Soda

100g Tesco Finest 85% Dark Chocolate

5 Medjool Dates, Pitted (The original recipe calls for 7 Pitted dates, so add more if you need more sweetness)

3 Large Eggs

1/2 Cup Coconut Oil

1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence

 

Instructions

1. In a food processor, pulse together almond flour, salt and baking soda

2. Pulse in squares of dark chocolate until the texture of coarse sand

3. Pulse in dates until the texture of coarse sand

4. Pulse in eggs

5. Pulse in melted coconut oil and vanilla essence

6.Transfer mixture to a greased 8 x 8 inch baking tin, or line with non stick baking paper

7. Mixture will be very thick, smooth with a spatula

8. Bake at 180 degrees C for 18-22 minutes

9. Cool slightly and tip out onto a wire rack.  Cool for 2 hours before serving.

 

I store these brownies in the fridge or freeze them so you don’t eat them all at once!

 

 

 

 

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Paleo Granola Recipe

Paleo Granola

One of my favourite people to follow is The Paleo Mom.  She has some great recipes and I get loads of ideas and information from her blog.

This recipe is an adaptation from one I found on her site.  I made a few changes because the honey in the original recipe made it a little bit too sweet for me. My taste buds have changed quite a bit since eating Paleo…don’t get me wrong, sometimes I still need to eat chocolate…I’m no saint!…and in the grand scheme of life I don’t think we should beat ourselves up if we fall off the wagon.  Unless you have a specific time frame or goal for achieving a bikini body etc. then I think to just eat real food is a lot better than stressing about being skinny.

 

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