Tag Archives: homemade

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

I am sure you know by now that I’m a die hard chocolate fan. Or some may say chocoholic, addict, but whatever. The point is, I love chocolate! And if I were going to pick a cookie, it would 100% be my Wholesome Chocolate Chunk Cookies, but sometimes people just need a little space…even from good things. So even though these cookies may not be chocolate, they are light, sweet, chewy, and tasty! They are gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free, and make the perfect companion to your afternoon cup of coffee or can keep you company during your late night binge of reality TV. I hope you don’t discriminate against non-chocolate desserts – give these a try!

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Makes 18 cookies.

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup of coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup of coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp of baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp of baking powder
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup of coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of old fashioned oats
  • 3/4 cup of raisins

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F
  • Line a baking sheet with a baking mat
  • Combine all dry ingredients (coconut flour through salt) in a mixing bowl
  • Add the wet ingredients (coconut oil through egg)
  • Stir until well combined
  • Add in the oats and raisins
  • Roll the dough into tablespoon sized balls and place on prepared baking sheet
  • Bake for 11-13 minutes, until the top springs back when touched and the bottom is lightly browned
  • Store leftovers covered at room temperature

For more cookie recipes, check out my favorite Wholesome Chocolate Chunk Cookies or my Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookie Bars. I also have browniescheesecake, and mug cake if you want something in a different direction. I am here to be open minded to all kinds of delicious desserts! When I bake with healthier ingredients, I can truly enjoy my dessert without any stomach aches, blood sugar spikes, or mental guilt – and let’s be honest, dessert feeds the soul. Find something on my site to enjoy for yourself, or share if you want ūüėČ Either way, feed your soul…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!

This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase using the links, it doesn’t cost you any extra and I get a small commission. Thank you for supporting A Pinch of Crazy!

Simple Guacamole

Avocado: a delicious healthy fat that tastes good on top of or mixed into anything. Seriously. There are avocado brownies, avocado toasts, avocado ice cream, fried avocados, stuffed avocados, the list goes on. Avocados are everywhere! But one of my favorite ways to eat those delicious, fatty, green guys remains the classic guacamole. Perfect for topping salads, sandwiches, tacos, dipping, or eating with a spoon. I mean…what? Guacamole can get really fancy; you can go spicy, sweet, and with all sorts of mix-ins, but this “recipe” (I feel bad even calling it that!) is one of my favorite ways to make a flavorful yet simple guac that will go good with anything. It’s quick to make, with minimal chopping, and loved by my whole family. In fact, I left my toddler with a bowl of it in her near vicinity, and when I came back into the kitchen, she had climbed up on a chair and was licking guacamole off her hand, saying, “mmm that’s good ‘cado!” I couldn’t even be mad because it was so cute, and I was glad she was getting her healthy fats in! Anyways, let’s get to this super simple recipe that can transform any meal!

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My guacamole thief ūüôā¬†

Simple Guacamole

Serves 4-5. Definitely double this recipe if you’ll be feeding a big crowd.

Ingredients:

  • 2 ripe avocados
  • Juice of one lime (I use¬†this juicer¬†to get out every last drop!)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp finely chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 tsp of garlic powder
  • 1/4 finely chopped red onion
  • Other possible mix-ins
    • diced tomato
    • fresh garlic (just a little!)
    • fresh or pickled jalapenos
    • a splash of your favorite salsa
    • charred corn
  • Chips to dip

Directions:

  • In a small mixing bowl, combine the flesh of the avocado and lime juice
  • Mash until semi-smooth
  • Add remaining ingredients
  • Stir until combined
  • Dip, spread, or spoon (not just me, right?) away!
  • Store leftovers, covered, in fridge. It will turn a little brown due to oxidizing, but just give it a stir and it will be fine!

And that’s it! Easy, huh? Adding a little guacamole will seriously transform your dinner. Boring chicken breast? Top with guacamole and you have “Fiesta Chicken”! Boring salad? Nope. Add guacamole and it’s “Taco Salad”! You get the point ūüėČ

For more delicious dips, check out my¬†Classic Garlic Hummus,¬†Dairy free Garlic Herb Ranch, and¬†Spicy Garlic Salsa. For some simple dinner ideas that would go perfectly with this guac, check out my¬†One Pan Chicken and Shrimp Fajitas,¬†Salmon Burgers, or¬†Spicy Garlic Chicken Nachos. These are all good ideas for any March Madness parties you may be throwing, too! I know you’ll find something easy to make that the whole family finds easy to eat. Add a little guacamole, and it’s a party! Party on…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!

This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase using the links, it is of no extra cost to you, just a small commission for me to keep my pantry stocked! Thank you for supporting A Pinch of Crazy!

Flax and Oat Pancakes

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You groggily open your eyes one Saturday morning. Spring is here; this fact is made evident by the warm sun streaming through the blinds and the cheerful songs of the birds outside your window. You hear your children and spouse giggling down the hall, you smell the freshly brewed coffee, with a light and happy heart you head to the kitchen and…pour the same tired, old, strangely-reminiscent-of-cardboard cereal for breakfast?! No! Such a perfect spring Saturday morning calls for pancakes! And, believe me, these hearty and healthy pancakes will have everyone around the table full, happy, and ready to enjoy their spring break adventures without a sugar crash.

Flax and Oat Pancakes

Makes about 12 pancakes, depending on size.

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 cups of whole wheat flour (could be made gluten free by substituting¬†GF flour)
  • 1 cup of old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup of¬†coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp of whole¬†flax seeds
  • 1/2 tsp of baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp of ground nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup¬†coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 3/4-1 cup of water
  • Optional toppings:

Directions:

  • Heat your skillet over medium-low heat, and grease with desired cooking oil
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (flour through salt)
  • Add egg, oil, and almond milk, stirring until combined
  • Add water about 1/4 cup at a time, until it makes a fairly thin batter
  • Spoon batter (your desired pancake size) into hot pan
  • Once bubbles form and pop, flip and cook on the other side
  • Repeat with remaining batter
  • Serve warm with desired toppings
  • Store leftovers covered in the fridge – they reheat fine in the microwave, good to grab and go!

I hope you and your family can enjoy a slow Saturday morning breakfast together; I’d guess that these pancakes could rouse even the most sullen teen out of bed ūüėČ For more breakfast ideas, check out my¬†Whole30 Breakfast Hash,¬†Turkey Sausage Breakfast Bake,¬†Fruit and Nut Granola,¬†Cinnamon Apple Oatmeal, or¬†Peanut Butter and Chocolate Overnight Oats. I hope this season, in all of its newness, starts off wonderfully for you. Have some quality time at breakfast…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!

 

Mexican Mocha Creamer

A Little Homesick

As you may know, my husband and I just recently moved back to Texas after four years in Southern California. I’ve always called Texas home, but lately, I’ve been feeling homesick for California. I miss the warm sun, the beach, our friends, and even base housing (never thought that would happen!), but especially our church and our slow Sundays. On our way home from church in Cali, we would oftentimes stop for coffee at a little drive-through kiosk. It was little but insanely popular, with the line usually wrapping around into the neighboring parking lots. We would usually just get plain brewed coffee with almond milk, but sometimes for a treat, I would get a Mexican Mocha. Chocolate-y with hints of vanilla and cinnamon, it was delicious; however, with all the sugar in the mocha, I would soon be left with fuzzy teeth and a sugar crash, so I decided to make my own! As an homage to sunny Southern California, which will always have a special spot in my heart, here is my dairy free and refined sugar free Mexican Mocha Creamer!

Mexican Mocha Creamer

Makes about 3 cups. 

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup of 100% cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup¬†coconut sugar
  • 3 tsp of¬†pure vanilla extract¬†(it’s really so much better than imitation)
  • 1.5 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 cup of full fat¬†coconut milk

Directions:

  • Combine all ingredients in a small pot
  • Over medium-low heat, whisk until thoroughly combined and warmed through
  • Pour directly into coffee, or blend for a frothy cuppa
  • Cover and refrigerate leftovers (I use a mason jar) and pour (or blend) into coffee again and again!

If mocha isn’t your thing, I have my¬†Pumpkin Pie Coffee Creamer¬†for you! And for other dairy free, refined sugar free drinks, check out my¬†Dairy Free Eggnog,¬†Death by Hot Chocolate, and¬†Slow Cooker Apple Cider. If you need a sweet treat to go with your Joe, I’ve got you! Check out my¬†Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups,¬†Microwave Molten Lava Cake,¬†Dark Chocolate Paleo Brownies, or¬†Wholesome Chocolate Chunk Cookies¬†for some of my favorites!

I hope you can have a peaceful cup of afternoon coffee, complete with Mexican Mocha Creamer and a satisfying treat. Get caffeinated and rejuvenated…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!

This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase using the links, it is of no extra cost to you; just a small pantry fund for me. Thank you for supporting A Pinch of Crazy!

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Classic Candy with a Healthy Twist

If you hear the words “peanut butter cup”, I am sure you think of that certain candy with an orange wrapper, AKA chocolate-coated-peanut-buttery-goodness. Ah yes. They are certainly delicious, but those candies have 16 grams (8 per cup) of sugar! I’m sure you know by now that I have a huge sweet tooth [monster], and I’m definitely a fan of the classic peanut butter/chocolate pairing. Before I discovered the effects of sugar on my anxiety, I could gobble up 2 orange packages (32 grams of sugar!) without batting an eye…then, when I was lying in bed wide awake at 2 AM, I would wonder why my chest was tight and my heart was racing. *face palm*

For Zemirah’s stocking this Christmas I…I mean, Santa…decided to make refined sugar free candies, and peanut butter cups were first on the list! I made them again for her birthday, and they were a hit! If you ask me, these peanut butter cups taste even better than the ones with the orange wrapper; they are vegan, no bake, gluten free, can be made paleo, and the best part (to me) is that they are refined sugar free! Sweetened only with maple syrup, these peanut butter cups will give you the nostalgia of opening one of those orange packages, with an even better taste, and won’t send your blood sugar soaring! These little treats would be the perfect things to pack in your kiddo’s lunch box for their Valentine’s Day treat; they will love them, and you will love knowing they will still be able to focus in school without a sugar crash! Chocolate-coated-peanut-buttery-refined-sugar-free-goodness for the win!

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Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Makes 6 large peanut butter cups. Could easily be doubled.

Ingredients:

Directions:

  • Line 6 muffin tins with parchment paper cupcake liners
  • In a microwave safe bowl, combine the baking chocolate and 1/2 tbsp of coconut oil
  • Microwave in 30-second increments, stirring after each, until completely melted and smooth
  • Combine peanut butter, maple syrup, salt, and coconut flour in a separate bowl
  • Fill each liner about 1/5 of the way with chocolate
  • Scoop a large spoonful of the peanut butter mixture on top of each, flatten with a spoon
  • Cover each peanut butter scoop with remaining chocolate
  • Chill in refrigerator for about an hour, until firm
  • Keep leftovers covered, in fridge, for 5-7 days (though they will be gone in 2!)

For more nut butter/chocolate goodness, check out my Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookie BarsTwo Layer Paleo FudgePeanut Butter and Chocolate Overnight Oats, and Wholesome Chocolate Chunk Cookies. And for more no bake desserts (is there anything better?!) check out my Microwave Molten Lava CakeNo Bake Chocolate Date Cake, and Chocolate Banana ‚ÄúNice‚ÄĚ Cream. I hope you find a treat you love for this Love Day, and don’t forget to pin it (at the bottom of the page) so you can keep coming back to it! Celebrate this Valentine’s Day with some refined sugar free chocolate, keep your sugar monster silenced, your blood sugar regular…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!

This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase using the links, it is of no extra cost to you; just a small pantry fund for me. Thank you for supporting A Pinch of Crazy!

Smoky and Sweet BBQ Sauce

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The Stars at Night, are Big and Bright…

All my fellow Texans just clapped in their heads and sang “Deep in the Heart of Texas”. Admit it, you know you did! I’m certainly missing Southern California, but I am happy to be back in my great state. Texans are a proud people, and one of the things we pride ourselves on is our BBQ. You can find at least one little BBQ joint, if not three or four, in pretty much every tiny town in Texas, and probably every single one boasts it’s own “special BBQ sauce”. I love BBQ sauce; I cook with it, dip things in it, and top things with it! It’s so versatile; sweet, spicy, tangy…and loaded down with refined sugar. A popular brand of BBQ sauce has a staggering 16g of sugar in only 2 tbsp of sauce, and the American Heart Association recommends no more than 25g of added sugar for women and around 12 for children, depending on their age. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want nearly all of my sugar consumption for the day to come from a measly 2 tbsp of BBQ sauce.

So what are we supposed to do when we want that sweet, tangy sauce? Make some with no added sugars! This BBQ sauce is sweetened using dates, which are a sweet and sticky fruit, so the sugar content is natural and unrefined. The smokiness comes from charring an onion, and the tangy flavor comes from apple cider vinegar and garlic. This sauce is delicious in my Barbecue Meatloaf, is perfect to top shredded chicken or pork with, or use as a marinade. However you use it, I know you will love the flavor, and relish in the fact that there are no added sugars. Healthy food doesn’t have to be flavorless or boring; enjoy it!

Smoky and Sweet BBQ Sauce

Makes about 2 cups.

Ingredients:

  • 1.25 cups of water, or more for a thinner sauce
  • 1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 6 oz can of tomato paste, no salt or sugar added
  • 2 tbsp of Dijon mustard
  • Medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/4 yellow onion, charred either over gas burner or in the broiler
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 tsp of paprika
  • 1/2 tsp of pepper
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp of cayenne, depending on taste
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp of chipotle powder, depending on taste

Directions:

  • Combine all ingredients in a small pot over medium heat
  • Stir until combined and just starting to steam
  • Carefully transfer ingredients to food processor or blender
  • Puree until desired consistency
  • Use immediately, or store covered in fridge for up to 2 weeks

For other flavorful sauces, be sure to check out my Dairy free Garlic Herb RanchSpicy Garlic SalsaClassic Garlic Hummus, and Lemon Garlic Aioli. For creative ideas on how to use this BBQ sauce, check out my Barbecue Meatloaf, or possibly with leftovers from my Roasted Chicken with Carrots. And, of course, all BBQs need a delicious side of Mustard Potato Salad. Yum!

I hope this BBQ sauce inspires you to cut out added sugars and to truly enjoy healthy foods! Cover everything in sauce…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!

This post contains affiliate links; if you purchase using the links it is of no extra cost to you, just a small commission for me. Thank you for supporting A Pinch of Crazy!

Oven Baked Fries

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Delicious AND Nutritious

It’s not often that the words “fries” and “nutritious” are used in the same sentence, but in this case, they are! These fries are baked, not fried (should I call them French Bakes?), and only have one tablespoon of olive oil used, so they aren’t dripping unhealthy grease everywhere. I have said before (here¬†and¬†here) that potatoes aren’t the villains they’re made out to be. No, in fact, they are the hero’s (the hero being vegetables, of course) side kick, a little quiet and plain, but with the right amount of healthy attention, flourishes and compliments the hero quite nicely!

Okay, weird super hero analogies aside, potatoes actually are good for you! They contain plenty of fiber and protein, and sweet potatoes have lots of vitamins A and C in them, which you can read about¬†here. And, I mean, who wouldn’t want to eat a hot, salty, crispy-on-the-outside, soft-on-the-inside french fry?! Dunk it in some¬†homemade¬†or¬†store bought¬†ranch or¬†ketchup¬†and you’ve got the perfect side dish or snack. Let me just wipe the drool off my keyboard and get to the recipe now…

Oven Baked Fries

Serves about 5, but could easily be doubled.

Ingredients:

  • Two large potatoes, russet or sweet, or a combo, cut into fry shaped strips (quick tutorial on my¬†Instagram)
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil or¬†avocado oil
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 tsp of dried parsley
  • 1 tsp of¬†nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp of garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp of black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp of paprika

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425 F
  • Prepare a large, rimmed baking sheet with¬†parchment paper
  • Place sliced potatoes on prepared baking sheet
  • Drizzle with oil of choice
  • Evenly sprinkle seasonings
  • Using your hands, mix potato slices so they are all evenly coated with oil and seasonings
  • Arrange the potatoes in an even layer, so that each slice is on the tray
  • Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes
  • Remove from oven and flip each fry
  • Return to oven and bake for another 15-25 minutes, depending on your desired crispy-ness
  • Eat hot with sauces
  • Leftovers will keep covered in fridge for 5-7 days, I suggest reheating in the oven or in a hot skillet

For other potato sides, be sure to check out my¬†Creamy Whole30 Mashed Potatoes, Mustard Potato Salad, or¬†Roasted Potatoes, and for main dish potato recipes, I have¬†Taco Stuffed Potatoes with Avocado Chipotle Ranch¬†or¬†Slow Cooker Potato and Kale Soup; all of which I’m sure you will love! After all, who doesn’t love a super hero sidekick?!

I hope your family, kiddos included, love these fries as much as mine does, and that they can become a weeknight staple for you. Fries that don’t leave you feeling greasy and regretful – woo! Go on, dunk away…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!

This post contains affiliate links; if you purchase using the links, it is of no extra cost to you, just a small commission for me. Thank you for supporting A Pinch of Crazy!

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