Paris Eats: More than French Onion Soup

Ah, Paris, the land of love. Paris is known as being a romantic city and it lived up to the hype. We were only there for two full days, and it was bitter cold, but we still could understand why couples think of Paris as an ultimate getaway destination. I decided upon arriving to Paris that I would let my dairy intolerance and bread abstention slide a bit. I prepared by dropping a whopping $45 on Paris’ form of Lactaid (FYI, it is WAY cheaper in the States so if you plan on needing this at any point, prepare ahead and buy them at home) just so I could eat a couple macaroons and avoid bothering the waiters with my dietary restrictions.

I don’t think that my pictures from Paris are going to be what you expected to see. While I did have an amazing three-course meal from a menu I could read nothing off of (I don’t speak French), the restaurant was too dimly lit for any legitimate photos. A lot of ordering for me was a bit of guessing game. Luckily for me the waiter at this particular restaurant spoke enough English that I could discern a fish entree and two starter courses that did not have any meat in them. My fish was cooked in a vanilla butter sauce which normally I would try to work around, but he convinced me that it was very little so I didn’t argue. When in Paris. He was right. The vanilla flavor was strong but I didn’t feel overwhelmed by butter at all.

I did take pictures of the farmers markets that sold beautiful local produce as well as  some of the local bakeries. I ate a couple bites of baguettes, too many macaroons (you have to try all the flavors, right?! I only took a nibble of each though to avoid stomach distress and major guilt), and some of the most amazing goat cheese I have ever had. We found it at the market wrapped in golden raisins and we ended up just eating the whole ball of cheese alone throughout the day as we were exploring museums.

Paris is where I originally discovered Maoz. I know – I probably ate it too many times during my month in Europe but it was SO GOOD, so cheap, and much quicker than sitting down at a full service restaurant. Another great falafel joint in Paris was L’As de Fallafel, which I found through Yelp. (By the way, I find the vast majority of my restaurants through Yelp, so if you are ever interested in where I am eating, you can check out my Yelp account for reviews and bookmarks! The username is kwirkala.) When we arrived, there was a 30-something people line in the middle of the day! The line turned out to be for dining in and there was a much shorter line for takeaway. 

Paris Eats

The farmers markets were chock full of beautiful colors and variations of produce. Look at these heirloom tomatoes – I never see such unique tomatoes here in the States! My dad joked that only I would go to different countries and take pictures of food and farm stands. I had to retort that food is such a beautiful and integral aspect of our culture differences. I don’t know who wouldn’t be captivated by all the differences in food and preparation. 

Paris Eats

I saw this truck and figured I should probably paint that on my kitchen wall. At these markets, we had some of the best tasting oranges and mangos I have ever had. It is amazing to me how much the taste of a fruit or vegetable can change by the way that it is farmed. The flavors here were developed in a way that I barely experience anymore in the U.S.

Paris EatsRemember the oddly shaped vegetables from my previous posts? Have you ever seen oval radishes? Mine are always perfectly circle no matter where I buy them here, but these were completely unique shape. I am not sure what causes this difference, but how fun to see the same plant look entirely different.

Paris Eats

These markets were also a welcome change from some of them that I have frequented in the States. The produce all looks so fresh and vibrant! I lived right next door to the Dallas Farmers Market for a year and I almost always walked away disappointed (sorry to throw you under the bus Dallas). The produce looked sad and wilted or discolored even at the stands and usually would not last a day or two in my fridge. The farmers had the produce prepackaged so you couldn’t just pick and choose from the offering, you had to point to a bundle. More often than not, the produce on the bottom was moldy or just poor quality and was being hidden by the better-looking top layer. Dallas is not the only farmers market where I have experienced this  – I have seen this in Denver and Los Angeles, among others.

Paris Eats

A collection of food photos from Paris wouldn’t be complete without one from a bakery. These desserts are made daily in Gérard Mulot, a French bakery near the Notre Dame. We ordered 6 macaroons, fell in love (you have not had macaroons until you have one in Paris I assure you), and ordered 12 more to gift to our friends as a thank you for them letting us stay with them. I’m giving you permission to find this bakery and try even a single macaroon if you are ever visiting.

Paris Eats

BeLeaf in trying one bite of that thing that is tempting you. Then go on with life. 

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Amsterdam Eats: A Little Bit of Everything

I’m not sure what my ideas of Amsterdam were before I went there. I had heard of a couple things: the notorious Red Light District, canals, the wooden clogs, and tulips. Beyond that, I hadn’t really known what I was to expect upon my arrival. With regards to food, I knew absolutely nothing. What do the Dutch eat?! Oh wait, I knew one… stroopwaffles. Those thin little waffle things that look a bit like:

Amsterdam Eats

It has caramel in between the two thin waffle layers and then is obviously dipped in chocolate. Clearly, that’s not something I’ll be devouring. I did however have one bite. This is my solution to not feeling left out – I would eat one bite of anything that I wanted to try. This way, I would know if I was missing out on “the best food ever” without all the guilt or the pain from the dairy. And honestly, while the bites were good, I never really wanted another bite after that. That one bite left me content and kept the FOMO (fear of missing out) away. If you are traveling and are worried about it completely undoing your healthy lifestyle or changes, I suggest this method. Try a bite of anything. I personally only did it with items that had dairy in them as there were plenty of desserts I wanted to at least try. I have been a vegetarian long enough that I wasn’t about to try it with meat – for me, I just don’t even want it anymore. But you are different! If you are dying to try those meat dishes, try a bite! You can’t beat yourself up after a few bites here and there of things that you normally are trying to avoid. You can travel happy, try whatever you want, and still maintain your lifestyle!

Okay, so onto the food I did eat! My all-time favorite was a meal from a restaurant called Golden Temple, a vegetarian Indian restaurant founded by a group of Sikhs. The ambiance is beautiful, with colorful paintings covering the walls and the option to sit on cushions instead of chairs. The service was outstanding. The food was phenomenal as well. I ordered the dish of the day which was a pumpkin curry served with basmati rice, a homemade chapati, a small salad, and chutney. The guy ordered The Nutty Goat: a pizza with roasted pumpkin, caramelized onions, apple, blue goats cheese, hazelnut and thyme. SO GOOD! I also really liked the Catuma drink you see in the right-hand corner. It is a Brazilian wine cocktail that is made with vegetable extracts and no preservatives. It is not very sweet; just refreshing which is what I like in a drink. We also ordered a Raw Dessert Trio which I somehow managed to forget to snap a photo of. Probably because I jumped on eating it so quickly. This restaurant comes with a huge recommendation whether you are a vegetarian or not.

Amsterdam Eats

 Next restaurant: Aneka Rasa, an Indonesian gem. We ordered the vegetarian platter and as you can see, it was basically  a huge feast for the two of us. There were even more dishes than what you see here, but I couldn’t fit them all in the picture. Everything was vegetarian and dairy-free and it was such a lovely variety of flavors. Some of my favorites were the jackfruit (which has strangely a similar texture to pulled pork when cooked, but it is a vegetable!) and the veggies cooked in coconut milk. They also gave us a dish of shredded coconut and spices that you can sprinkle on top of the dishes and it was so tasty we were just spooning it into our mouths. 

Amsterdam Eats

And of course there are times when you don’t really feel like an elaborate big meal. We were running around the tulip market on our last day and saw a Maoz on the corner. I found out that there are actually a couple of these in the U.S. and if you live by one you should most definitely go. It is super quick – you order and then you customize via the salad & sauce bar in front of you. We ordered the hummus & falafel and then we decide the rest! I piled on lettuce, sauerkraut, , cucumbers marinated in dill, tahini-garlic sauce, onions, tabouli, sautéed carrots, and that crazy green salsa you see on top. Words of wisdom: don’t put that much green sauce. Let me be your learning lesson. I pride myself on my heat tolerance but I about died and was breathing fire and physically sweating for two hours after this meal. It is probably the hottest thing I have ever eat. 

We actually found Maoz all around Europe and it was out go-to for an on-the-move meal. The restaurants are all very consistent and you can always expect a fresh meal. 

Amsterdam Eats

I wish we could have spent more time here exploring the food culture and other experiences Amsterdam has to offer. If you go, try to bypass all the little restaurants touting crazy pizzas and candy covered waffles, that can be found around the city – there is so much more out there! Or just have that bite 😉

BeLeaf in trying foods of all different cultures & flavors.

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Berlin Eats: Less Schnitzel than You’d Think

Precursor: I am starting with the end of my trip and working backwards to the beginning of the trip. I spent the most time in London and thus want to finish my Europe Eats series with the food I encountered there.

I have to admit some things right off the bat. This e-relationship is only going to work if we are completely honest with each other. For those of you who have not been to Berlin, you can drink beer while walking down the street. Or a bottle of wine if you truly desire (and my friend did). You can drink a beer on your walk to the bar, during your wait in line outside the clubs, or in the middle of the day sitting in the park. This was an exciting new revelation to me and it had to be taken full advantage of. I usually maintain a pretty level head despite my level of alcohol intake when it comes to “drunk munchies”. I don’t want to say that I am above drunk munchies, but I have trained myself to crave things that I don’t have to feel too guilty about the next day. My friends make fun of me because while they are eating pizza at midnight, I am munching on carrots and hummus. What is interesting is that in no way do I feel that I am missing out. My carrots still seem immensely more appealing to me than the pizza delivery.

Back to Berlin, my point is, I could have been even healthier. Berlin has an emerging vegan and vegetarian population and it is pretty easy to find restaurants that cater to this. We passed by plenty of completely veg restaurants that I would have happily nommed in but I was in the company of some carnivorous boys that I had to cater to as well. Berlin’s night culture also came into play: clubs stay open well into the morning hours (think 8A.M.) and the breakfast, lunch and dinner line definitely started to blur. We started eating when we were hungry as opposed to your typical meal times… or more so when we passed by something that just looked absolutely delicious.

So what, exactly, did I eat? Well I obviously passed up all the currywurst stands and schnitzel restaurants. What I found interesting was that there didn’t seem to be a ton of “typical German fare” options. I’m sure they are out there, but even when meeting up with a local for dinner, she said she had to do a lot of research to find one. What you DO see is plenty of international cuisine. There is basically a Middle Eastern restaurant selling the the freshest falafel and hummus on every corner, so that is where you could usually find me. If you haven’t had falafel before, it is chickpeas and spices ground up, deep fried, and served steaming hot. I know, fried foods aren’t exactly on the list of healthy foods. But due to the 10-15 miles I was walking each day, I didn’t feel quite as guilty as I normally would. My typical meal at these types of restaurants was a mixture of their salad dishes, hummus and falafel on top. Followed by a baklava. Every time. Which again, I would normally suggest against eating, due to the butter and sugar levels, but hell, I was on vacation and the baklava in the States just doesn’t compare. Not even close. I’m talking about flaky layers of sweetness that melt in your mouth and force the corners of your lips to turn upwards. There must be some type of scientific evidence that fresh, authentic baklava causes a smile to occur. 

The dish below was my last meal in Germany. It was a vegetarian platter from a Lebanese restaurant. It was a huge feast of hummus, baba ganoush, falafel, green beans, red pepper dip, mashed eggplant, steamed squash and veggies, basmati rice and a cucumber and tomato salad. There was some dairy (the falafel is sitting in a yogurt sauce and there was halloumi, which is a cheese) but I tried my best to eat around it. This is important to note while traveling: sometimes it is difficult to cater foods perfectly to your diet or lifestyle. Sometimes it is impossible. You have to be willing to go with the flow, try your best, and make it work. Of course I could have just skipped on the little falafel balls and eaten everything else. But I just cut off the portion that was sitting in the dairy and let my friends have that part. In one restaurant, I was unofficially evicted when I asked if there was any dairy in the meal. The gentleman walked away from me, went and stood in the back for a minute, came back up and told me they were closed. Funny, the sign on the front of the restaurant said 10PM (it was 6PM). But there was very little in my control in this situation so I appeased him and left and ate next door. 

Berlin Eats

From a Turkish market, I received this dish below. The woman who was serving the food could not speak a word of English, so I pointed to what I thought might be vegetarian (they were) and hoped for the best. I believe there was a pepper and eggplant dish, a mushroom and veggie dish and then an arugula (called rocket in Europe) salad. The dressing probably had dairy in it so I avoided eating it. Even ordering this was a challenge and a German gentleman that spoke English had to help out a bit. Even when the serving staff at restaurants do speak English, often they are not willing to cater to substitutions. So again, you either give in and find a way to make the meal work, or you move on and find something else. This might seem like a hassle, but it is just part of the adventure. 

Berlin Eats

One of the most interesting things to me was walking around the markets and looking at the produce. Coming from a place where all of our produce is perfectly manicured and exactly the same, this was a bit of a shock. The carrots may have been the size of a beer bottle or the size of my thumb (and these were real carrots, not the disturbing baby carrot… I’ll save my baby carrot grudge for another time). First glance, these seem ugly! But change your perspective: they are not ugly, they are unique. They have character. What is the purpose of making all our produce the same size and shape? Uniformity is something that has become expected and admired in our country, but for what reason? 

Berlin Eats

 My time in Berlin taught me quite a few things: I should seek out farmers markets over even my favorite grocery stores despite the extra time and effort it may take. The result will be a greater variety of vegetables that I can be assured are untouched by chemicals and modern science. I can eat in Germany, not without fear as language and culture barriers are still evident, but with an edge of excitement and adventure. Most people genuinely want to know you and help you, but there are always some that won’t. I could have let that discourage me, but instead I kept up the search and enthusiasm, and always ended up with something at the end. Eat baklava and falafel sometimes, but don’t eat too much or you will end up spending extra time in the gym once your home. If you’re fine with that, by all means, eat away. But balance is usually always better, and much more rewarding. 

BeLeaf in finding the best sources of real food, untouched by chemicals. 

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Healthy Travels: It’s All About Balance

Holy hiatus. One month didn’t seem so long to be gone for until I realized my blog was sitting out in cyberspace with no love. I wasn’t exactly cooking while traveling throughout London, Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin so I am unfortunately not sitting on a bundle of recipes that I can share with you right now. The only cooking I did was an omelette one morning made with fresh farmers market veggies, sun-dried tomatoes, hummus, and the freshest goat cheese I have ever eaten. Other than that I did a WHOLE lot of eating out: in restaurants, local markets, friends’ kitchens, ect. So instead of frantically whipping up some recipes to post, I figured I would share with you the food I ate while traveling. We have this perception that it is impossible to eat healthy while traveling. Especially in the U.S., road trips are haunted by the snacks and sodas of gas stations and convenience stores. Occasionally they might have a banana or apple, but let’s be honest, it’s not organic and the apple is probably the mushy Macintosh variety. 

Domestic airport travel is not much better. Our airports are filled with fast-food chains and when you do find a restaurant that serves decently healthy food, the prices dissuade you immediately. There is no way I am paying $22.00 for a greek salad. Just no way. The food on the airplane (wait, they still serve food on airplanes?!) is laughable at best. The little green side salad you get is iceberg lettuce with a slice of tomato on it. Of course it tastes good if you pour that container of ranch all over it, but you might as well be drinking the ranch straight for all the good its doing you. Don’t tease yourself and think otherwise. 

The solution I have come up with for these problems is quite simple: prepare ahead. If I am going on a 22 hour road trip you better believe part of that trunk space is going to be dedicated to my cooler full of fruit, veggies, hummus, pre-packed salads and slaws, and other healthy snacks. You won’t find me on a flight to California without a tupperware packed with all the veggies I had left in my fridge. I come prepared so that I don’t either a) have to starve myself because I can’t find anything worthy of eating or b) eventually cave into buying a bunch of overpriced juices and bars at the airport because I’m SO HUNGRY. 

Veggie Stand

So what the hell do you do when you are traveling for a month and you have no kitchen to prepare your foods in?! Well, Europe makes it quite easy actually. Traveling from one big city to another warranted no problem for me. There was not one time I feared that I would not be able to find food that I could eat. Actually, quite the opposite, I feared that I would not have time to eat all the delicious, fresh food I was finding and I wanted to bundle it all up and bring it back to the States with me! From the local markets that exist all over the cities (and while some were only on weekends, they had plenty of smaller ones every day of the week!), to the fresh street food, to the smaller grocery chains that don’t have to carry organic because, well, everything is organic, I had no reason to fret. And while restaurants could prove a bit more difficult when I didn’t speak the language and the entire menu was in German, with a little bit of effort I almost always could end up with something I could happily eat. (I say almost always because there were a few cases that my lack of a language was clearly not appreciated… but I’ll get to that later on. Learning lessons, you know?!) 

Did I eat only fruits and veggies while traveling? No. I ate white bread in Paris. I ate macaroons in Paris. I ate Baklava in Berlin. I ate fish in a vanilla butter sauce and falafel that was sitting in a yoghurt-tzatziki sauce. Sometimes it was by choice (there is a reason why Paris is famous for its macaroons) and sometimes it was because the language barrier impeded on my ability to clearly communicate what I wanted. Sometimes the pain of eating the dairy was worth it (I would endure a much higher level of pain for the walnut baklava that we stumbled upon) and sometimes it may have been a wiser choice to simply swallow the sunk cost of receiving food that I knew I shouldn’t eat and tossed it. But it’s all just part of the journey of living and learning. 

Chocolates

Anyways, my plan is to spend the next couple of posts sharing with you my adventure through a couple countries in Europe and the food I ate in each. My hope is that I can maybe spark a realization that traveling does not need to mean dropping all your lifestyle habits and eating whatever is put in front of you. It is about choosing mindfully and respectfully incorporating your dietary choices with those of the culture you are in. 

Vegan Salted Caramel Cupcake

Experiencing a different food culture is part of traveling. Finding foods that are both similar and different to your everyday finds at home can be an adventure on its own. Do I regret eating this vegan salted caramel cupcake in London? Never. I enjoyed every bite. 

BeLeaf in the ability to travel, enjoy, delight & maintain health. 

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The Holy Banana Bread

Out of all the “healthy desserts” I’ve ever made and forced upon my friends, this is champion. I’ve tried to “healthify” cheesecake, brownies, carrot cake, pumpkin pie, cookies… you name it. In terms of my success rate, I would give myself a 95%. My boyfriend says he agrees with the 95% success rate, but I think he is being a little nice. He tends to “taste health” more I recognize it. There have been a few occasions when I think something is perfect and he takes a bite and shoots me a “less earthy please” look. Out of all the desserts I’ve handed to him, this one has topped them all, for a couple reasons.

  1. Ease: Apple products are successful because they are easy to use. This banana bread is successful because it is easy to make. Even the comparison is easy to understand.
  2. Health: Free of artificial sugars, refined flours and dairy! It is sweetened only with bananas, dark chocolate and a dash of maple syrup. I used coconut flour which is gluten-free and has a significantly higher amount of minerals and nutrients than typical pastry or whole wheat flour.
  3. Taste: It tastes just as good, if not better, than your typical butter-dominated banana bread. Will provide references upon request. I have about a dozen of them.

Most of my healthy desserts take hours to create. It requires the soaking of nuts and seeds, a ton of kitchen utensils, and hours of chilling. This recipe takes just minutes to whip up and put in the oven and less than an hour from there. You can eat it piping hot from the oven (the first loaf was demolished like this) or you can refrigerate it and eat it cold (round two is being worked on via this method). Either way it is chocolatey banana goodness and a dessert you can feel great about eating.

Healthy Dark Chocolate Banana Bread


 Healthy Dark Chocolate Banana Bread

Ingredients

1-2 Tbsp coconut oil
5 small bananas, brown
4 organic, free-range eggs
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup almond butter
1/8 cup maple syrup
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 cup dark chocolate chips, 1/4 cup reserved
1/2 cup walnuts

Instructions

  1.  Preheat oven to 350F. Position rack in the middle of the oven.
  2. Grease a loaf pan with coconut oil. Be sure to cover both the bottom and sides of the pan.
  3. Peel bananas and place them in a large bowl. Using a fork, mash bananas until lumpy.
  4. Add the eggs and whip with a fork until fully mixed.
  5. Pour in melted coconut oil, almond butter, maple syrup and vanilla extract and mix until well incorporated. The mixture can still be lumpy – I like large bits of banana in my bread!
  6. Add in the dry ingredients – coconut flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and sea salt. Continue to stir until all the clumps of dry ingredients are completely mixed in.
  7. Fold in 3/4 cup of dark chocolate chips.
  8. Pour the batter into the loaf pan. Smooth out the top and sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips and walnuts on top.
  9. Place in oven and bake for 45 minutes for a soft center. Pierce the middle with a fork to check if it is done – if it comes out clean (besides some melty chocolate), it is ready to come out! If you like your banana bread a bit more dry, cook for an additional 10 minutes.
  10. Allow to cool for 10 minutes. Serve warm or refrigerate!

Notes

Banana Waiting Game: Like I said earlier, this process takes very little time from start to finish. The only thing you have to wait on is your bananas. Green bananas will not work. Yellow bananas will not work. Spotted bananas may work, but you’ve waited this long already; why not wait a couple more days? We want brown bananas. The browner, the better. Your bananas should look like you should have thrown them out a week ago. Those bananas will be sweet and soft and are perfect for banana bread.

Overmixing: Here’s a lesson in baking: try your hardest to mix the ingredients as little as possible. You want everything mixed thoroughly (i.e. you don’t want lumps of coconut flour in your batter) but baking is tricky little science and can be pretty finicky. Plus warm chucks of banana in your banana bread are a dream.

Chocolate Addicts: I eat chocolate all the time. There is a huge difference between a Hershey’s bar and dark chocolate (even Hershey’s dark chocolate doesn’t cut it). Make sure you read the ingredients before purchasing, even if it says ‘dark chocolate’ on the label. I cannot tell you how many times someone has bought me some delicious looking ‘Dark Chocolate with sea salt, berries and everything you could ever want’ bar only to flip it over and see ‘milk’ listed as the second ingredient. I recommend at least 65% cocoa in order to truly benefit from the high antioxidants of dark chocolate. 365 Everday Value (Whole Foods’ brand) makes a brand that are 67%. Sunspire makes a great product as well. 


 The banana bread should come out pretty easily since you greased the pan. Slice it with a sharp knife and use a spatula to wedge it out. Alternatively, you can wait until it is completely cooled (I would even suggest putting it in the fridge for a hour or more prior to doing this) and then simply flipping the loaf pan over onto a cutting board. It should come right out, but if the chocolate chips haven’t hardened once again, you will have a big mess and I’m assuming a less attractive version of what I’ve shown you here. 

Healthy Dark Chocolate Banana Bread
If you didn’t know already, chocolate and bananas go together like PB&J. They were meant to be with one another. If you haven’t had a dark chocolate covered frozen banana, find out where you can get one and go get it. Or chocolate banana pancakes. I have a recipe for those I’ll post up here soon. It tastes very similar to this banana bread. Or you can try my chocolate banana smoothie, which I dubbed the Fauxsty. Name something that is predominately chocolate and banana that is not amazing and I will personally bake this banana bread for you.

Healthy Dark Chocolate Banana Bread
Healthy Dark Chocolate Banana Bread
See those bananas back there? Those are as yellow as you want to see them. Just remember, the browner they are, the sweeter they are. So it’s up to you if you have the patience to wait for them, but don’t come to me complaining that the bread needs sugar if you don’t wait. I will know.

Healthy Dark Chocolate Banana Bread
Healthy Dark Chocolate Banana Bread

I can promise you this loaf won’t stay around for long. This is going to be my new party hit. People love to assume that I eat food that tastes like cardboard, and I love even more proving them wrong. I want more than anything for you, my readers, to feel confident that being healthy does not mean you will never again enjoy food. On the contrary, it will allow you to experience and enjoy food in a whole different way. 

BeLeaf in the undeniable chemistry of chocolate and bananas. 

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Spirulina Sunflower Seed Milk

This one is a weird one. I’m not going to even act like it’s not. This one might put me right into that box labeled “hippie” by some of you, but I’m not afraid of labels. Labels are created by those that are afraid of being open. They confine us instead of encourage us. For example, some might label me a vegan. But I don’t exactly fit in that box. I eat fish and eggs, which excludes me from the group. Now I do make plenty of vegan recipes, and I label them as such, but I myself am not a vegan. But for some people, wrapping their heads around my style of eating proves too difficult. So it is easier for them to dump me into the vegan box. Anyways, my point is, just because this recipe doesn’t fit into your idea of “normal”, don’t automatically disregard it. Some of your greatest discoveries and loves in life will be found when you least expect it.

If you read my post about Homemade Almond Milk, you know how I fee about store-bought almond milk. It is laden with chemicals and preservatives and honestly doesn’t taste as good. One of the problems about making almond is that it is a bit of a process. You have to strain out and separate the liquid from the pulp. I love homemade almond milk and it is worth the effort, but sometimes you just don’t have the time. That’s when sunflower seeds come in handy. Sunflower seeds blend super easily so there is no need to strain them.     So technically if you’re not feeling super adventurous you can omit the spirulina and just make regular (white) sunflower seed milk. But I was feeling colorful and this was the result. 

Spirulina Sunflower Seed Milk


 Spirulina Sunflower Seed Milk

Ingredients

2 cups chilled water
1/2 cup sunflower seeds, preferably soaked for 1-2 hours
1 Tbsp spirulina powder
12 drops liquid stevia
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp sea salt

Instructions

  1. If able, soak sunflower seeds in water for 1-2 hours. Drain and rinse.
  2. Place water and sunflower seeds in blender. Start blending on low, then slowly increase to high. Blend until completely smooth.
  3. Add spirulina powder, liquid stevia, cinnamon, vanilla extract and sea salt. Blend again to mix thoroughly.
  4. Store in fridge in a mason jar for up to 5 days.

Notes

– Sweetness: You can replace the liquid stevia with whatever type of sweetener you want, such as honey or maple syrup. Start with a smaller amount, like 1 Tbsp and add more as desired. 


Spirulina Sunflower Seed Milk Spirulina Sunflower Seed Milk Spirulina Sunflower Seed Milk

You could even be so adventurous as to try this in your cereal! It has a nutty, sweet flavor that will easily compliment grains. As you can see from the above photo, there is snow here. Smoothies made with nut milk or coconut milk seem more filling and hearty in the colder months so I like to keep a jar of this in the fridge for the the mornings. If you are more into hot oatmeal during the colder season, you can use this as your liquid instead of water or other types of milk. It may look strange, yes, but that’s just because it’s new. Who knows, maybe your healthy cereal and Spirulina Sunflower Seed Milk will become your new norm! 

BeLeaf in being open to trying new things.   

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Chocolate Fauxsty

I doubt there’s a soul reading this that hasn’t had a Wendy’s Frosty… or at least can picture it after reading the name. McDonalds has milkshakes too but for some reason they never gained the notoriety of a Frosty. When I hear someone mention Wendy’s the first thing I think about it a Frosty. But that thought was irrelevant for a couple years until… I decided it was time that I had a Frosty again. But not your typical Frosty with god-knows-what ingredients. No momentary food happiness is worth the years of harm all those processed ingredients are doing to your body. So I set out to make a Frosty, which my boyfriend and dubbed the Fauxsty. Pretty clever, I know. The ironic thing is there is nothing faux about it. All of these ingredients are real; no artificial flavors or chemicals that you can’t pronounce.

Chocolate Fauxsty

Here are the ingredients in a typical Frosty (straight from Wendy’s website): Milk, Sugar, Corn Syrup, Cream, Whey, Nonfat Milk, Cocoa (processed with alkali), Guar Gum, Mono and Diglycerides, Cellulose Gum, Carrageenan, Calcium Sulfate, Disodium Phosphate, Artificial Flavor, Vitamin A Palmitate. CONTAINS: MILK.

There are a few words in there that I can pronounce so let’s look at those first.

Milk: Ah, the staple in every American household. Milk is fed to us starting in infancy and esteemed for making our bones strong as we grow. Then, once we’re full grown, we continue to drink it, because we assume it must still be healthy. Unfortunately, dairy products are among the most acid-forming and mucus-forming items that we can put into our body. I could go on a huge rant on dairy right now, but I’ll save that for its very own blog post.

Sugar: This is not fruit sugar. It’s not even organic pure cane sugar or coconut sugar, which some can argue has some health benefits (but it’s still sugar). This is refined table sugar, which has been processed many times over to give you that addicting sweetness we all love and crave. Literally. The more you eat it, the more your body craves it. And it’s in EVERYTHING now. A medium-sized Frosty at Wendy’s has 64 grams of sugar. The American Health Association (AHA) suggests that women should get no more than 25 grams daily, while men should get no more than 37 grams. So even a grown man is getting twice the daily suggested allotment, and that was a maximum. They aren’t suggesting you eat 25 grams every day. They are saying, “please don’t surpass 25 grams, if you must consume the stuff”. Did you every realize that our nutrition labels in the U.S. don’t have recommended percentages listed for dairy? On the right side of the label is a percentage of the daily value that you are consuming of fat, sodium, carbohydrates, ect. They don’t however offer this information for sugar. Have you ever wondered why? It’s because the percentage would be so ridiculously high on so many packaged foods that people would easily be able to attack the specific companies and the government for allowing the product on shelf. Would you still buy that juice is it said it was 150% of your recommended daily value?

Nutrition Label

Photo from fda.gov

 Corn Syrup: A product made from corn starch that is 100% glucose. It is exactly as sweet as the above table sugar. It is extremely processed.

Cream: (See Milk, above). Add the fact that its extremely fatty, and we’re not talking good fats. We’re talking the saturated fats.

Whey: (Also see Milk, above).Whey has long been touted as the champion of protein powder. It is the only product whose protein amount exceeds the potency of egg whites. Whey is the waste product that occurs during the production of cheese, which means that it is packed full of lactose. For those of you who are constantly looking for ways to pack your day with protein, you may be surprised to know that you can get enough protein simply from eating enough vegetables and legumes. Worry more about eating a well-balanced array of fruits and vegetables and less about the processed substances that can give you excess protein. Chances are, you’re consuming too much protein anyways, as the average American consumes 50% more protein daily than they should.

Nonfat Milk: (Also see Milk, above). When fat is removed from a product, how will they get you to continue buying it? They add sugar. They have to get you to keep eating it somehow.

Cocoa (processed with alkali): This type of cocoa is processed in order to reduce the bitterness and acidity of natural cocoa. Therefore the antioxidants that natural chocolate has are absent. I mean, it tells you it’s processed in the name…

Now for the items that are not in our normal vocabulary. Hint… if you look at an ingredient list and can’t pronounce most of the names, it isn’t very good for you.

Guar Gum: An additive used to thicken or emulsify. It comes from the Guar Bean, which is actually a natural source. The problem with gums is that they cause gas and digestive issues. While the studies on the effects of guar gum are limited, ideally you should avoid additives as much as possible.

Mono and Diglycerides: More food additives. They are used to combine fat and water based foods (like keeping oil from separating out of products) which don’t combine well together normally. These come from animal fat (and they often don’t highlight that fact for vegetarians). Thus they contain a high amount of trans fats which are associated with heart disease. 

Cellulose Gum: Here we have another thickening and emulsifying agent. This is common in “frosty” treats such as ice cream because because it gives products a smoother texture. It is extracted from wood pulp and cotton cellulose – now really, where did people come up with these ideas?! It also helps keep things frozen (again, helpful for ice cream products) and also makes things sweeter (since obviously this milkshake isn’t sweet enough yet). Like guar gum, our bodies are not able to digest cellulose gum. The FDA has also said that large amounts of cellulose gum can have the same effect as laxatives. I’m sure it is not the laxatives you are looking for when you buy a Frosty…

Carrageenan: This one is very similar to the cellulose gum above. It thickens and keeps products from separating. While this products comes from a natural source (red seaweed), it is known to cause inflammation and digestive issues.

Calcium Sulfate: This is literally the sulfate salt of calcium. Another food additive that extends product shelf life and acts as a firming agent. Unlike all the others, this one comes from natural mined sources  and is a good source of calcium.

Disodium Phosphate: A collection of sodium salts and phosphoric acids that is used to enhance the flavor in processed foods. It is simply an alternative to natural salts. Also used to emulsify and thicken.

Artificial Flavor: Artificial flavors come from any source that is originally inedible that is then processed to create flavors. Here’s something of interest: while artificial flavor sounds completely processed and unhealthy (it is), natural flavors seems to sound more favorable. Am I right? The truth is that neither of these are much better than the other. The difference between these 2 come from the origin of the flavor chemicals. While natural flavors must come from a plant or animal source (vegans and vegetarians, beware!), artificial flavors are synthesized in a lab.Yet artificial flavors usually contain less chemicals than their natural counterparts, which often can be a mixture of hundreds of chemicals. My point here is both should be avoided. Don’t let the terminology fool you.

Vitamin A Palmitate: This is a synthetic version of Vitamin A. It is also known by the names Retinyl Palmitate and Retinol Palmitate. It is an isolate which causes digestion problems. It is commonly added to milk products as a thickener, which is what you see here. It is linked to problems with developmental and reproductive toxicity.

Well. I am honestly a bit speechless after researching and writing all that. How these chemicals and additives even come together to create something that tastes good is beyond me. What I do know is that you can make your own version that tastes amazing too. Since it is made with only whole foods, you will start to feel actually feel full while eating it (compared to processed foods where you can finish a meal and still feel ravenous).

Chocolate Fauxsty


Chocolate Faux-sty

Ingredients

1 cup almond milk
1/8 cup cocao powder
1/4 cup almond butter
2 Tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 Tbsp hemp seeds
1 tsp cinnamon
1 frozen banana, cut into chunks
1 cup ice

Instructions

  1. Place milk, cacao powder, almond butter, maple syrup, vanilla extract, hemp seeds and cinnamon into a high-speed blender. Start blending on low and slowly work your way up to high. Blend until the hemp seeds are completely liquified. 
  2. Add the frozen banana (it will blend easier with smaller chunks) and blend until smooth. Do not other blend as you will start to lose the thick consistency the frozen banana gives the smoothie. 
  3. Add ice and blend again until smooth.

NOTES

– Consistency: The less ice you use, more flavorful the smoothie will be. It also will be thinner. More ice will yield a thicker smoothie, but it will be less flavorful. Another option to make a thick and flavorful smoothie would be to add another frozen banana. Personally, that’s too much banana for me (it is heavier) but I know people who would be fine with it. 

– Bananas: Frozen bananas make this smoother, creamier and thicker but they are not a requirement. Just know you will have to add more ice to make it thicker (see above note).


 

Chocolate Fauxsty

This is one of my favorite things to make when I am craving something sweet. It takes only a minute or so to make and the ingredients are common to have around in the kitchen. This recipe yield a smaller portion than you would normally probably order at a Wendy’s but with a full banana in it it is pretty filling. I know going through the drive through seems like the easier choice to curb that sweet tooth but I promise this is one of the easiest recipes you can find and it will most definitely make you feel better afterwards. No food regret here. 

BeLeaf that there are ways around our processed favorites.  

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Portobella Protein Bowl

If you follow me on Instagram at all, you are probably seeing a trend. (The word trend here is just a nicer way to say obsession… it’s probably really an obsession…) When I find something I really like, I tend to eat it over and over again until it no longer excites me. I know this isn’t a good trait, but I haven’t found a workaround yet. Anyways, the trends in the my kitchen lately are portobello bowls and veggie burgers. I recently posted a portobello bowl recipe but I had to come back with another. I’ll get the veggie burger recipes up here as soon as I have perfected them. Portobellos are pretty easy to perfect with a couple sauces and/or spices so the recipes require a lot less work. I’ve never heard a soul utter, “I wish this recipe required more work in the kitchen”. I do however hear plenty of people question the amount of time that is required in the kitchen when eating healthy. Some people have this perception that a healthy lifestyle will demand all of their time. While this can be true, it doesn’t have to be the case. This recipe is a great example of that. 

I’m offering you shortcuts and variations to cater this to your lifestyle. If you have the time to make every ingredient, great, you’ll love it. If you are in a bit of a hurry, I have options for you too.  That is why I started this blog – to help YOU find a way to fit healthy living into YOUR life. Your life is different from mine and different from the lives of every person that promotes a healthy lifestyle. You are the only one that knows how much time you have to dedicate to a task; I’m just here to guide you along the way. 

Portobello Protein Bowl


 

Portobello Protein Bowl

Ingredients

For the Salad:

1/2 of a small sweet potato, sliced into rounds
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1/2 cup quinoa, cooked
3 cups leafy greens (I used spinach but feel free to use whatever you have on hand!)
1/8 cup sweet onion, sliced thin
1/2 portobello mushroom, sliced
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 of a zucchini, sliced
handful of sunflower sprouts
1/4 of an avocado, sliced

For the Dressing:

juice from 1 lemon
4 Tbsp tahini
2 Tbsp water (or more to thin it out)
black pepper, to taste
sea salt, to taste

Instructions

  1.  Preheat oven to 350F. Slice vegetables while oven is heating up. Place sliced sweet potato rounds into a baking dish and toss with 1 Tbsp of the coconut oil. Once oven is preheated, bake for 45 minutes, stirring once or twice throughout. 
  2. Cook your quinoa according to the directions on the package. I usually go with 1 cup of quinoa to 1.5 cups of water. I like my quinoa firm and I find that a 1:2 ratio makes it on the softer end.
  3. While the potatoes and quinoa are cooking, you can start sautéing the other veggies, arranging the salad and making the salad dressing.
  4. Heat remaining 1 Tbsp of coconut oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté 1-2 minutes. Add portobello mushrooms to the mix and pour the balsamic vinegar over the veggies. Sauté another 5-6 minutes until soft and browning. 
  5. Scoop your greens onto the bottom of your bowl. Once everything has finished cooking, scoop your quinoa, sweet potatoes, portobello-onion mix, zucchini, avocado and sunflower sprouts on top of the bed of lettuce. 
  6. For the Dressing: Place all ingredients in a small bowl. Whisk with a fork until smooth. You can add more or less water depending on the consistency you desire. 
  7. Pour desired amount of dressing over the bowl. 
  8. Enjoy!

NOTES

Coconut Oil: If the coconut oil is solidified when you pull it out, you can microwave it for 5-10 seconds to soften it prior to adding it to the sweet potatoes. I usually just put the hardened coconut oil and sweet potatoes in the oven and pull it out 5 minutes later to mix it around. I avoid the microwave when necessary. But I told you I was giving you options today! Also, you can use another type of oil, but for high heats, coconut oil is one of the best. I know our society is prone to using olive oil as the heart-healthy option, but olive oil actually turns rancid when too hot. 

Have Leftovers: Here’s a tip for time saving: create in bulk! While the recipe above is for one salad, the things that take time to cook, like sweet potatoes and quinoa, I usually make extra of. Whatever I don’t use in the salad right away, I will use over the next couple days. I mean, are you really going to cook just 1/2 of a sweet potato? Cook the whole thing… or 2… or 4… Then you’ll have substance for days!

Save the Salt: Notice I didn’t add salt on the sweet potatoes before they were cooking. This will cause the vegetable to dry out. It is best to add salt at the end, after you pull them out of the oven! 

Time Frenzy: If you don’t have 45 minutes to wait for the sweet potato to cook, microwave it! Pierce the potato with a fork a few times and place onto a plate. Microwave on high for 6 minutes, turning over halfway through. If you do have the time to spare though, always go with the oven. Honestly the sweet potato will taste better (flavor from the oil + less dry)!


 

Portobello Protein Bowl
Portobello Protein Bowl
Portobello Protein Bowl
Portobello Protein Bowl

I’m all about using what you have on hand so don’t freak out if your can’t find sunflower sprouts. Try any sprout! One of the first things you should know about healthy eating is that versatility is key. No one wants to eat the same thing 3 times a day for 2 days. Even if you have all this extra quinoa, sweet potato and veggies ready, try changing 1 or 2 things every time you eat it. You’ll still be able to make a quick meal given what you have on hand, but you won’t be bored with it! 

If you do ever have questions about how to make a recipe in less time or without certain tools or ingredients, don’t hesitate to reach out in the Comment Section! I have all sorts of tips and tricks up my sleeve that are just waiting to be shared!

BeLeaf in tailoring your meals to your time needs. 

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Carrot Cake Juice Pulp Muffins

I am not a huge juicer. I wish I did it more honestly, but compared to my Vitamix, which is arguable the best blender on the market, my juicer is sad. It leaves a whole lot of pulp. Sometimes I find whole parts of fruit left and that makes me really upset – I feel like I am wasting so much. My juicer also takes a good amount of time to clean up at the end of the whole process where my Vitamix takes maybe one minute. So I tend to migrate towards smoothies over juices in my daily life. Every so often though, I find myself craving a refreshing glass of juice and I bust out the clunky machine onto my counter. I went through an Carrot, Apple/Pear & Ginger juice phase a couple months ago where I would make the juice every day. I couldn’t fathom throwing away all the pulp, so I kept a large plastic bag in the freezer and just kept adding the pulp in. Finally, when the bag was full, I decided I needed to come up with an idea for using it. I ended up with these muffins. They are everything you want from muffins – moist, flavorful and sweet. But they are healthy too. So you can eat save them for dessert, eat them as a snack throughout the day, or just pop one every time you pass through the kitchen, which I pretty much did. 

Carrot Cake Juice Pulp Muffins


Carrot Cake Juice Pulp Muffins
Adapted from Alison Smith

Ingredients

For the Muffins:

2 Tbsp coconut oil
4 cups of juice pulp (preferably from carrots, apples, pears, oranges, and/or ginger)
1/4 cup of oil (I used olive oil)
1/2 cup of water
1 egg, or egg replacement for vegan option (see below*)
5-8 Medjool dates, pitted (depending on your sweetness level)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp liquid or powdered stevia (optional for added sweetness)
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
2/3 cup coconut flour
3 Tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 raisins
1 cup walnuts
1/2 shredded coconut
Whole pecans, for garnish

For the Frosting:

1.5 cups cashews (soaked for at least 4 hours)
juice from 1 lemon
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 tsp sea salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. If your juice pulp is frozen, place into a baking dish and put into the preheated oven for 4-5 minutes. That will warm it right up! (Alternatively, if you have time to spare you can leave it on the counter to thaw out.)
  3. Grease two mini muffin tins with coconut oil. Make sure you cover the bottoms and sides thoroughly.
  4. Place defrosted juice pulp into food processor. Add oil, water, dates and egg (or egg replacement) and blend until completely smooth. For a sweeter muffin, add the larger number of dates.
  5. Add vanilla, stevia, baking powder, baking soda and flour. Continue to mix in food processor until well-blended.
  6. Add cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg, cloves, allspice and sea salt. Pulse for 30 more seconds.
  7. Transfer the mixture into a large mixing bowl. Fold in raisins, walnuts, and shredded coconut.
  8. Scoop mixture into the mini muffin tin. The muffins will hold the shape that you give them, so form the tops into mounds and smooth. The batter will not rise.
  9. Place into oven and bake for 40 minutes. Bake until you see the tops beginning to brown.
  10. Remove from oven and let cool completely before removing the muffins from the tin.
  11. For the frosting: While the muffins are baking, you can make the frosting. Place cashews, lemon juice, maple syrup and sea salt in a high speed blender. Start blending on low and gradually increase the speed. The frosting should not be chunky, so keep blending until it is smooth and creamy. Transfer into a bowl or tupperware to chill in the refrigerator until the muffins are cool and ready to be frosted. (For a tangier frosting, add more lemon juice. For a sweeter frosting, add more maple syrup.)
  12. Using a knife, loosen the edges of each muffin. Carefully remove each muffin from the tin. 
  13. Using a rubber spatula or spoon, spread the frosting on the mound of the muffin. Press a whole pecan on top of each muffin.
  14. Store on a plate wrapped in plastic wrap and keep in the fridge for up to 5 days. 

NOTES:

*Egg Replacement: Mix 1 Tbsp ground flax seeds with 3 Tbsp warm water.

I would avoid using any type of citrus pulp in this mix – it makes for a bitter aftertaste due to the seeds. If you’ve ever chewed a lemon seed, you know what I mean. I made this mistake the first time I made these and my boyfriend, King of Carrot Cake, was having a hard time eating them. I still ate them happily, but I also get very upset when people waste their food. (There is only one time I can remember throwing out a recipe that didn’t work out as planned… it involved eggplant. I’ve yet to buy an eggplant since. I’m scarred.)


 

Carrot Cake Juice Pulp Muffins

I took plenty of pictures of these little poppers because they are so darn cute. You don’t know how excited I am that I found a great use for juice pulp. I still would rather have a better juicer than doesn’t leave as much pulp, but this will absolutely do for now. If you don’t have a juicer, and are looking into purchasing one, there are tons of great options out there. Like most appliances though, you usually get what you pay for. Mine was a middle-grade and it operates as such. The more you pay, the more yield you will probably see when juicing. I say probably because there are always exceptions. But just google “best juicers” and you will find endless lists of comparisons between brands and models. Find the right one that works for you. And if the one that works for you is an inexpensive model that produces little juice and lots of pulp, you know what to do with it!

Carrot Cake Juice Pulp Muffins

Here is a picture of the muffins without frosting. You can definitely leave the frosting off for more of a carrot-muffin type snack, but I recommend the frosting if you are looking for carrot cake. Let’s be honest – everything is better with frosting. And your health will be better with healthy frosting so it’s a win-win. 

Carrot Cake Juice Pulp Muffins

These would be perfect to bring to a get-together or party, unless you’re totally selfish and want to save them all for yourself. If so, I don’t blame you. You can’t do that with normal carrot cake or else you will balloon and your body will become sluggish and heavy. Besides the external effects, inside your body all that sugar, flour and dairy will be wreaking havoc. Some of my favorite recipes are replacing foods that are clearly bad for our health and turning them into foods that feed our inner energy.

There are plenty of ways to save what seems like garbage or leftovers from foods you are eating and turn them into something else edible! You can use all the stems and ends of vegetables to make vegetable broth. You can dehydrate or bake almond pulp from making almond milk and create your own almond flour. Doesn’t it feel good to know not only that you are saving your own money but also eliminating waste in our world. The amount of food that is wasted each year could effectively feed the one billion starving people in our world. 

 BeLeaf in finding ways to use food byproducts instead of wasting!

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Pumpkin Superfood Balls

It’s time to share one of my favorite snacks. They are basically effortless as long as you have a food processor. They are perfect for on-the-go. Just throw them in a plastic baggy or small tupperware and toss them in your bag as you head out the door. For those of you with kitchen fears (those of you that can’t mix more than 3 ingredients without getting anxiety and messing up everything) these snacks are almost impossible to botch. I say almost because I know a couple people who probably would find a way, but stick to the ingredient list and you should be safe.

I have tons of variations of these but I’m nearing the end of my pumpkin-everything season, so I’ll share these now so they don’t have to wait until next year.

Pumpkin Superfood Balls


Pumpkin Superfood Balls

Ingredients

10 pitted Medjool dates (meaning throw away the pits!)
1/2 cup raw walnuts
1/4 raw almonds
1/2 oats (gluten-free option)
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
4 Tbsp shredded coconut
2 Tbsp cacao powder
2 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 Tbsp maca powder
1 tsp sea salt

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse or blend until ingredients begin to clump together.
  2. Form into 1-inch balls by rolling between the palms of your hands.
  3. Place in air-tight tupperware and store in refrigerator.
  4. Grab-and-go as needed!

If you are missing a couple of the ingredients, try without! There’s a lot of different ingredients packed into this, so don’t feel that you can’t make them until you go to the store to get cacao powder. Substitutes are always welcome too! If you don’t have almonds, double up on walnuts or use cashews. Are all your nuts roasted? Use them! No pumpkin pie spice? Make your own by mixing cinnamon (4 tsp), nutmeg (2 tsp), ground ginger (1 tsp) and allspice (1 tsp)!

If you are unsure about any substitutes, ask in the comments! I’m always happy to find replacements for ingredients that you may not have at home or cannot consume. 

Pumpkin Superfood Balls

Oh, and I usually end up eating a quarter of this while I’m blending it. It’s pretty hard not to – you’re going to be surprised how delicious it is! I’m telling you this so you feel okay about it as you’re doing it. Sometimes mine doesn’t even make it into ball form. I just spoon it all into a bowl and eat it with a spoon. Whatever works, right?!

Pumpkin Superfood Balls

I think you’ll start to find that you really don’t even need to measure the ingredients out after a time. I just pour everything in by eye-balling it, meaning that I guess the amounts. All the ingredients in here are tasty on their own, so adding more or less of any of them won’t cause you to have to throw the batch away. I challenge you at some point in your life, to try cooking without a recipe list in front of you. The thought can be scary and intimidating, but who knows what new treat you come up with?! And if it doesn’t work, try to figure out why and start again. Eventually you will have created something that is yours – your taste preferences, your ideas, your creation. But if you’re not ready for that, this recipe will keep you happily snacking until you are. 

Pumpkin Superfood Balls

 BeLeaf in creating using intuition instead of a recipe list. 

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