Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Cookies

Braxton is leaving his childminder this week and starting nursery – eek!! I didn’t know what to get the lovely ladies at the childminder so decided to make them some nice things and package them nicely as a thank you. I made them these and some chocolate truffles – I hope they like them and hope you do too!

Ingredients

1 tbsp coconut oil
3 heaped tbsp natural peanut butter
¼ cup maple syrup
2 tbsp almond milk
½ tsp vanilla powder
Pinch Himalayan salt
1/3 cup ground almonds
3-4 tablespoons coconut flour

Chocolate coating:
3 tbsp cacao powder
¼ cup maple syrup
2 tbsp cashew butter
¼ cup coconut oil (add more if it is too thick)

Method

Preheat the oven to 170°C and line 2 baking trays with baking parchment and grease with coconut oil.

Melt the coconut oil in a small saucepan and add to a mixing bowl.

Now add the peanut butter, maple, almond milk, vanilla and salt to the bowl and mix well with a wooden spoon. It should start thickening a little.

Now add the ground almonds and mix really well, then add the coconut flour and mix again. If it is too runny to make into cookies, add another tablespoon. It should thicken as you mix but add coconut flour one spoon at a time as needed.

Roll into small balls and push down on the prepared baking tray but not too thin as they should be quite bulky and will be soft on the inside if they are thicker which is nice, a bit like blondies.

Put in the oven and bake for 7-8 minutes, until they have only just started browning on the edges but not more than that as they will continue to harden when they are out the oven.

While they are in the oven make the chocolate by melting all the ingredients together in the saucepan you melted the coconut oil in.

Let the cookies cool on the trays for 5 minutes then let them cool fully on a wire rack.

Once cool, dip them in the chocolate and put them on a plate and put the plate in the fridge for an hour.

You can store them in an airtight container in the fridge to keep the chocolate from melting and they should still be soft enough on the inside when they come out the fridge.

Love & health,
Lauren

 

Golden Linseed Oat Cookies – Full of Omega-3 and Great for Baby Led Weaning

img_6384

As you all know by now, I usually make sure to make a batch of something sweet but healthy once a week (ish!) so that I don’t have to give Braxton anything processed or filled with sugar. I don’t give him sweet things every day (apart from fruit), but I do like to give him things like this every few days now he’s nearly 1. It keeps him quiet for 5 minutes, that’s for sure! 🙂 But the main point is that I like to make sure I fill any snacks I make with superfoods.

Making cookies like these is a great way to be able to add things like linseeds, which are a great vegetarian source of the Omega 3 essential fatty acid, Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA). Our bodies can’t make ALA, so it is ‘essential’ that we get them from our diet. These essential fatty acids also have anti-inflammatory properties, so aside from making sure he gets essential fatty acids in his diet, I’m also giving him anti-inflammatory properties which, in our situation, is imperative.

Suffice to say these were very well received! Soft on the inside, slightly crisp on the outside and easy for Brax to chew. Sweet but not too sweet and of course, free of gluten, wheat, dairy, refined sugar or eggs.

Ingredients (makes 12 cookies)

1 cup ground almonds
1 ½ cups organic rolled oats
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch Himalayan salt
5 tbsp coconut oil
1/3 cup maple syrup
4 tbsp almond butter
¼ cup almond milk
1 tbsp golden linseeds

Method

Preheat the oven to 180c and line 2 baking trays with baking paper and grease with coconut oil.

Mix all the dry ingredients, except for the linseeds, in a bowl.

Add all the wet ingredients to the blender and blend until combined.

Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the linseeds and mix.

Form into balls with your hands and press down on them on the prepared baking trays and bake for 10 minutes.

Put the baking sheets with the cookies on them on a wire rack or on top of some towels on the work surface (the surface they cool on shouldn’t be cold) to cool away from the heat of the baking trays so they don’t crisp up too much. Once cool put in an airtight container.

Love & health,
Lauren

Best Ever Chocolate Chip Oat Cookies

Chocolate Chip Oat Cookies

These need very little introduction! They are by far the best cookies I’ve ever made and I honestly just threw the ingredients together as I was in such a rush so it was hard for me to remember the exact measurements! They are egg, soya, gluten, dairy and sugar free (depending on what chocolate chips you use) and are just too yummy!

Ingredients

1 cup ground almonds
1 ½ cups organic rolled oats
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch Himalayan salt
5 tbsp coconut oil
1/3 cup maple syrup
4 tbsp almond butter
¼ cup almond milk
Handful vegan chocolate chips

Method

Preheat the oven to 180c and line 2 baking trays with baking paper and grease with coconut oil.

Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl.

Add all the wet ingredients to the blender and blend until combined.

Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well. Add chocolate chips and mix.

 

Form into balls with your hands and press down on them on the prepared baking trays and bake for 10 minutes.

Put the baking sheets with the cookies on them on a wire rack or on top of some tea towels on the work surface (the surface they cool on shouldn’t be cold) to cool away from the heat of the baking trays so they don’t crisp up too much. Once cool put in an airtight container.

Enjoy!

Love,
Lauren

Healthy “Oreos”

 

My son loves Oreos, so I wanted to come up with a healthier version for him.
Buckwheat is gluten-free and is considered a wholegrain, even though it is not in fact a grain. It lowers cholesterol and blood pressure; contains antioxidants and easily digestible protein; is high in fibre and helps to combat diabetes.
I’ve used coconut blossom sugar to replace regular sugar. While it is still a sugar and shouldn’t be consumed in large amounts (like any form of sugar) it is a much better option than processed cane sugar. It’s made by evaporating the nectar of coconut blossoms, so is raw, unrefined and unbleached. This means that it retains nutrients, notably zinc, iron, calcium and potassium. It also contains a fibre called inulin, which makes it much lower GI than regular sugar.
A good rule to remember is that not all calories are equal – you always want your calories to be as nutrient dense as possible. So if you are going to have a treat which contains some form of sugar, rather go for a natural form of sugar which has a higher nutritional value.

Ingredients

For the cookies:
110g organic virgin coconut oil
110g organic coconut blossom sugar
2 eggs
55g raw cacao powder
1/2 tsp organic vanilla powder or extract
1/4 tsp Oryx Desert Salt
280g buckwheat flour
2 tbsp ground flax (you can grind whole flax seeds in a coffee grinder or use pre-ground)
1 tsp aluminium-free baking powder
2 tbsp water

For the filling:
1 cup raw cashews
60ml raw honey
30ml coconut oil
1 tbsp chia seeds
1/4 tsp vanilla powder
1/4 tsp Oryx desert salt


Method

Preheat the oven to 180 C.

Sift the cacao powder to remove lumps. Combine with the other dry ingredients and set aside. Cream the coconut oil and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time while beating. Add the dry ingredients and combine well. Add the water only if the dough is a bit dry or crumbly.

Dust your work surface with extra flour and roll the dough out to about 2mm thickness. Cut out into 5 or 6cm circles. Bake on a cookie tray lined with baking paper or silicone mats for 10 – 12 minutes. Allow to cool.

To make the filling, combine all the ingredients in a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Sandwich two cookies together with the filling and allow to set.
Makes 24 cookies.

Health & happiness!

Love,
Lauren & Raine

Gluten-free Biscotti

Biscotti

Biscotti are a family favourite so I knew I had to come up with a healthier version of these traditional Italian biscuits. They are wheat- and grain-free, and I’ve used some stevia, allowing me to cut the amount of coconut sugar in half. I love to have them with a cup of tea or hot chocolate while I’m working on the blog 🙂

Ingredients

1 1/4 cups almond flour
1 1/2 cups raw almonds
1/3 cup coconut sugar
1/3 tsp stevia (or replace with an additional 1/3 cup coconut sugar)
pinch of Oryx Desert Salt
1 tsp aluminium-free baking powder
zest of 1 orange
zest of 1 lemon
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract or 1/2 tsp vanilla powder

Method

Preheat the oven to 160 C.

Place 1 cup of the almonds in a blender or food processor and grind finely. Chop the remaining 1/2 cup almonds roughly. Combine both with the almond flour, coconut sugar, stevia, salt, baking powder and zest.

Beat the eggs and vanilla. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the egg into it. Use a fork to pull the dry ingredients into the egg, mixing as you go. It may look like the mixture is too dry, but just keep going and it will come together. Use your hands to fully combine if necessary, and then shape it into a ball.

Dust your work surface with a generous amount of almond flour. Divide the dough in half, and then shape each half into a log about 7cm wide and 3cm high. Place both logs onto a baking tray lined with baking paper or a silicone mat, or greased with coconut oil.

Bake for 25 minutes, remove from the oven and allow to cool. Turn the oven down to 140 C. Slice the logs at an angle and about 1.5cm thick. Slicing at angle will give you the traditional biscotti shape. Lay the slices out on the baking tray and return to the oven to dry out; 30 – 40 minutes, depending on how you like them.

Health & happiness!

Love,
Raine

Vegan White Chocolate Cookies

White choc cookies 1

Pregnancy cravings have struck! I am craving cookies and biscuits like never before, especially in the afternoon. I’ve given in and had a few ‘naughty’ Belgian chocolate covered biscuits because I don’t agree with depriving yourself to the point of being miserable. I’d say that my healthy lifestyle makes up for 80% of the time, and the other 20% is when I eat out or at other people’s houses or fancy a treat. I don’t want to be the person who goes out for dinner and can’t have anything on the menu. Since cleansing myself and getting into remission, I no longer have any intolerances so my body accepts everything, I just don’t agree with eating all that unhealthy stuff all the time. But every now and then, if I fancy a biscuit, I have it! That being said, the cravings have got a bit mad so I had to make some healthy ones to keep at home and these really do satisfy the craving 🙂

Ingredients

1 can chickpeas, rinsed then patted dry
2 tbsp organic natural peanut butter (I use Meridian)
3 tbsp almond milk
1 tbsp coconut oil
3 tbsp maple
1 tbsp sized chunk of cacao butter
3 tbsp buckwheat flour
1 tbsp coconut palm sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (not essential, but I find it gives the outer layer of the cookie a crunchier texture)
Pinch of Himalayan or Oryx salt (I used Oryx desert salt)
Generous handful of vegan white chocolate chips (or any chocolate chips of your choice)

Method

Preheat oven to 180 (gas mark 6) and line a baking tray with baking paper and grease it slightly with coconut oil.

Put the chickpeas, peanut butter, almond milk and coconut oil in a food processor and blend until smooth.

Then add the maple, cacao butter, buckwheat flour, coco sugar, baking powder, bicarb and salt and process again until smooth and sticky.

Transfer the mixture to a bowl and add the chocolate chips and mix in.

Take cookie sized balls of the mixture in your hand, roll then press down to a cookie shape on the prepared baking tray. Dampen your hands slightly if it is too sticky. Repeat until mixture is finished.

Put in the oven for 12-15 minutes or until you see they are very slightly golden but do not over bake. They will continue to harden once they come out the oven. Transfer baking sheet that they are on, onto a cooling tray or wire rack until fully cooled.

Served best with a cold glass of almond milk!

Enjoy!

Love,
Lauren

Double Chocolate Cookies

Double Chocolate Cookies

It’s tough being pregnant and health-conscious! But what time could be more important than now to watch what I eat? The growth and health of my baby is solely dependent on me – that’s a lot of pressure! So I need to make sure I’m consuming only the healthiest, most nutritious organic produce but that’s not always easy; as we know, everything healthy takes preparation. I must admit, I have succumbed to the odd store-bought chocolate biscuit over the last few weeks as the serious chocolate cravings hit, but I try to make a batch of something sweet yet healthy once a week or once a fortnight so I have stuff on hand.

Today we looked after our 18 month old niece (good practice!) and while she had her afternoon nap I whipped up these bad boys, adapting from a recipe by Wholesome Patisserie. Not only did they 100% fully satisfy my craving (and I’m not lying, they really did – even more so than the store-bought processed stuff!) but my niece loved them too and we got to have them warm out the oven when she woke up. That’s what I call Sunday afternoon bliss! I hope you like them as much as we all did 🙂

Ingredients

Wet Ingredients:
1 heaped tbsp ground flax seeds
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup almond butter
1 and quarter cups coconut palm sugar
1 tsp vanilla bean paste

Dry Ingredients:
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/4 tsp Himalayan or Oryx salt
3 heaped tbsp raw cacao powder
1 1/2 cups buckwheat flour
2 tsp almond milk
Half cup dairy free (or your choice of) chocolate chips

Method

Preheat oven to 180 and line 2 baking trays with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together the ground flax and 3 tbsp filtered water and set aside for 2-3 minutes or until it has thickened up. Then whisk the flax egg one final time.

Now add the wet ingredients to the same bowl with the flax egg; solid coconut oil, almond butter, brown sugar, coconut sugar and vanilla. Beat the mixture until smooth and well combined.

Add in the baking soda, baking powder, salt and cacao, beat the mixture well. You may have to knead a bit with your hands to get it fully incorporated, then beat or knead in the buckwheat flour with the almond milk until smooth and well combined.

Now mix in the chocolate chips.

Take a small piece in your hands and roll into a ball then flatten into a cookie shape and place on prepared baking tray. Make sure to leave enough room between each cookie as they will rise.

Put them in the oven for 12-15 minutes then remove them and leave to cool on a cooling rack for 5 minutes. After that you can either eat them warm or wait until fully cooled before storing them in an airtight container.

Enjoy the decadence!

Love,
Lauren