Cacao & Cashew Oaty Bites

cashew-cacao-oaty-bites

I may even go as far as to say that these are the tastiest things I’ve ever made…

I have to be honest, I wasn’t sure if it would even work but oh dear lord they do! So simple; literally took 5 minutes, 1 spoon, 1 saucepan and a cup, and to make it even more exciting, there is no refined sugar, dairy or gluten and totally vegan. It makes giving sweet treats to kids easier. Braxton is 13 months and has never had refined sugar and I want to keep it like that. If he always has treats that taste this good, hopefully he’ll never feel the need to binge on the rubbish stuff 🙂

Cacao is also a great plant-based protein which is essential for babies, as well as the essential fatty acids in the coconut oil.

Basically, MAKE THESE!

I used Biona coconut oil, coconut palm sugar and cashew butter as I prefer their ingredients so use them wherever I can ❤

Ingredients

3 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp coconut palm sugar
3 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp almond milk
1.5 tbsp cacao powder
4 tbsp cashew butter
1 cup organic rolled oats

cashew-cacao-oaty-bites-2

Method

Heat all the ingredients except the cashew butter and oats in a pan, on a low heat, very gently until combined.

Once melted, turn off the heat and stir in the cashew butter and keep stirring until fully incorporated.

Now add the oats and stir until totally mixed into the mixture.

Wait until it’s cooler, then spoon a tbsp. full onto a plate that has baking paper on and press into cookie shapes.

Leave to cool then once cool put in the fridge for an hour until set.

Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.

Love and health,
Lauren

 

Roasted Vegetable Pasta (Gluten Free) with RawSpiceBar Chipotle Spice Mix

roasted-veg-pasta

I was recently sent this month’s spice collection by RawSpiceBar. I’d never tried their spice mixes before so thought I’d give this one a go and added their Chipotle Salt spice mix to a roasted vegetable pasta, to make a normal everyday meal a bit more exciting.

It tasted amazing and what I love about it is that all the spices are organic, ethically sourced, sugar-free, gluten-free, paleo and vegan.

If you like flavour but are not too sure how to incorporate it into every day cooking, head over to RawSpiceBar and sign up to their monthly spice box and receive 3 freshly ground, recipe-ready flavour kits, direct to your door each month.

Ingredients

Brown rice pasta (enough for however many people you’re cooking for)
1 courgette
1 red pepper
2 red onions
Extra virgin olive oil
Half a tin of tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 sachet RawSpiceBar Chipotle Salt mix
2 cloves garlic, sliced
Half tsp paprika
Half tsp cumin
Himalayan salt & black pepper

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Chop the vegetables and add them to a large bowl and drizzle the olive oil over, then pour the RawSpiceBar mix over and mix well.

Put onto a baking tray and bake for around half an hour.

In a small saucepan add the tinned tomatoes, tomato puree, garlic, salt, pepper, paprika and cumin and leave on a low light, stirring quite often. Season more as needed. You’ll want to leave this on the heat for about the same amount of time that the vegetables are in the over, around half an hour, so don’t cook the pasta until the end.

When the sauce has thickened and looks ready, boil the pasta as per the packet instructions.

Once ready, drain the pasta in a colander, preserving a smidgen of water back.

Add the tomato sauce to the saucepan and mix well, then add the vegetables and mix.

Serve immediately.

Love & health,
Lauren

 

 

Vegan Pumpkin Donuts

donuts-edited

Yup, so this actually happened in my kitchen today!! I’d been seeing a lot of pictures of donuts around and my friend Deepa at GirlBoyFoodBaby made some healthy donuts also, so I decided to give it a go.

I wanted to make them using pumpkin (had a bee in my bonnet) so that they were autumnal (best word) and obviously now it’s made from a vegetable it’s basically like eating a salad so I can have as many as I want, right??

I found an organic pumpkin puree at Ocado which worked great. I could have pureed my own of course but these are so time consuming that I thought I’d buy the tinned one seeing as it was organic! This is the pumpkin puree I used…

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Speaking of time consumption, this deserves a warning… the donuts themselves do not take long to make at all. About 10 minutes prep and 7 minutes in the oven, but the toppings take a while. That is if you want to do different kinds like I did. If you just do one kind, you can whip it up while the donuts are in the oven and cooling and it won’t take too long at all. As usual, it’s really just the clearing up that takes up most of the time with baking… Surely I deserve to have someone to wash my dishes for me by now right?? 🙂

Anyway time-consuming toppings aside, does it really matter? I mean look how awesome they look! And they taste awesome too. Of course they taste nothing like a Krispy Kreme, but then again, I wouldn’t want it to. I want Braxton to grow up appreciating natural sweetness and natural flavours, not artificial rubbish filled with sugar and preservatives. Speaking of which, I used a lot of Biona products for these. Including their coconut palm sugar and coconut oil. I love how natural and organic their products are. Great for our health and for the environment.

You’ll need a donut tin for this, I got mine on Amazon and it looks like this…

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We took these with to our sister-in-law for dinner and everyone seemed to really enjoy them. We’ve saved one over for Braxton for a snack later (well, he’ll have a quarter) I hope you enjoy them xx

Ingredients (ingredients for toppings below at bottom of method)

1 flax egg: 1 tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 1.5 tbsp water
1 heaped cup buckwheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground nutmeg
Pinch Himalayan salt
1/3 cup Biona coconut palm sugar
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup almond milk
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and lightly grease the holes of the donut tin with coconut oil.

First, make the flax ‘egg’ by mixing the flax seeds with the water in a very small bowl and set aside.

Now mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl: buckwheat, baking powder, bicarb, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.

In another bowl mix the coconut palm sugar, pumpkin puree, almond milk, maple, coconut oil, vanilla and then add the flax ‘egg’. Whisk with a fork or balloon whisk until smooth.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula until totally incorporated.

Put the mixture into the prepared holes in the tin using your hands and smoothing them out on the top.

Place in oven and bake for about 7 minutes or until a fork comes out clean. They should still be moist.

Turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool fully before adding the toppings.

Topping choices:
Cinnamon vanilla glaze: In a small bowl mix 3 tbsp Natvia icing sugar, 1 tbsp warm water, quarter tsp vanilla extract. Spoon unevenly over the top of the donuts, then sprinkle with cinnamon.
Cashew cream: In a small bowl mix 2 tbsp cashew butter, 1 tsp melted coconut oil, half tsp vanilla, half tsp maple syrup. Spoon all over the tops and sides of donut and top with crushed cashews.
Chocolate: 1 tbsp cacao butter, 1 tbsp coconut oil, 1 tbsp cacao powder, 1 tsp maple. Heat gently in a saucepan and once ready, add to the top of the donuts. You can cover it then top with pistachios or almonds or you could drizzle it with a spoon.

Hope you enjoy these as much as we did!

Love & health,
Lauren

Sweet Potato & Zucchini Noodles with Creamy Cashew Sauce

cashew-cream-sweet-potato-zucchini-noodles

This is a recipe from the Veggie Steady Cook cookbook we had made from all our recipes from the day, so I can’t take credit for it as it’s not my recipe – but I made it the other day and swapped some of the ingredients to make it dairy free and it was so yummy. Check out the post I wrote about VSC if you haven’t already. This dish is such an awesome vegan recipe. I think I drowned the ‘noodles’ in the sauce a bit too much but the sauce was too delicious! I had it for dinner with a vegan, organic schnitzel.

Ingredients

1 sweet potato
2 zucchini
1 cup spinach
1 tsp Himalayan salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tbsp chopped basil
1 tsp paprika
½ tsp ground ginger
1 cup cashews
2/3 cup buckwheat or farali flour
125g vegan margarine
2-3 cups almond milk
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp mixed herbs

Method

Cashew sauce:
Soak the cashews in hot water for 30 mins.

Blend in the food processor and add ½ cup of almond milk

White sauce:
In a pan, heat the margarine and add the flour.

Add milk and stir gradually until it becomes thick and the lumps disappear.

Add salt, pepper, nutmeg and dried herbs.

Noodles:
Spiralize the sweet potatoes and zucchini and blanch in hot water for about 4-5 minutes then drain.

In a pan mix the cashew sauce into the white sauce, add spinach, basil, paprika, pepper and ground ginger and mix well.

Add the sweet potato and zucchini noodles into the sauce and mix,

Love & health,
Lauren

Quinoa with Lentils, Butterbeans and Vegetables – Vegan dinner

quinoa-and-lentils

I can’t take credit for this one; my husband made it. He has really got into this way of life over the past year or so, especially since having Braxton. It used to be something he was happy for me to do and would eat what I cooked because, well, it was yummy so he couldn’t really complain! But now he’s actually into it himself and loves being in the kitchen coming up with new and interesting recipes. He doesn’t bake, but he loves to cook savoury food and cooks for us a lot these days.

My kitchen is closed on the weekends – I just don’t have the energy to cook much during the weekends except to make food for Brax, so Daniel often makes us a Sunday night dinner and this was this week’s creation. You can literally add anything you want but we just used what we had at home.

Ingredients

1 cup quinoa
Half cup lentils
2 sweet potatoes
1 head broccoli, cut into florets
1 tin organic butter beans
1 tin organic sweetcorn
1 cup frozen peas
1 red pepper
1 tsp bouillon
Coconut oil
Olive oil
Himalayan salt & black pepper

Method

Peel and dice the sweet potato, put it on an oven tray, drizzle some coconut oil, salt and paprika and put it in the oven for 20 mins.

Take another oven tray, cut the red pepper into smallish pieces, drizzle with a tiny bit of olive oil and put that in the oven alongside the sweet potato for 20 minutes.

While they’re in the oven, put the quinoa and lentils into a saucepan, cover with plenty of water and bring to the boil. Once boiling, add the bouillon, turn down the heat and put the lid on. It will take around 20 minutes to make but keep checking and mixing, adding more water if needed.

Steam the broccoli for around 6-7 minutes

Boil the peas in some hot water – this should only take around 5 minutes then put them in a bowl with the sweetcorn, broccoli and butterbeans.

Once the sweet potatoes and peppers are ready add them to the bowl, then once the lentils and quinoa are ready, you can add this too.

Give it a good mix and add salt and pepper, and any other herbs you may like.

Love & health,
Lauren & Daniel

 

 

Raw Vegan Bounty Bites

raw-vegan-bounty-bites

My favourite EVER chocolate was Bounty – I’m obsessed with anything coconut so this really is an indulgence for me. I made these a few years ago before starting the blog but never photographed them or wrote down the recipe so thought I’d try to perfect them now so you can all share in their splendor! They are simply mouth-watering; so delicious but also kind of light and fluffy so they don’t make you feel sick. Everyone here loved them, hope you do too.

Ingredients

2 cups desiccated coconut
¼ cup ground almonds
½ cup coconut oil
The cream from the top of a can of full-fat coconut milk
¼ cup maple
1 tsp vanilla extract

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

Method

Melt the coconut oil then mix all the ingredients except the chocolate in a bowl.

Line a plate or baking tray with baking paper then roll the mixture into small balls and put them on the prepared plate and put it in the freezer for an hour. (the baking paper will stop them sticking to the plate)

Make the chocolate sauce while it’s in the freezer. Take it off the heat once ready, take the balls out the freezer and immerse them, one by one, into the saucepan and coat them with the chocolate then put back on the plate. They will be best if you coat them twice, so once you’ve done them all once, re-immerse them.

Put them in the fridge to chill and store them in an airtight container in the fridge.

Love & health,
Lauren

 

Summer Berry Smoothie

summer-berry-smoothie

This is basically the same as the summer berry smoothie bowl but this is more of a smoothie than an ice cream. It is our go-to breakfast most mornings, for me and Braxton, I just spoon-feed it to him. When there are no berries we just use banana and the other ingredients and it’s a great way of getting daily superfoods into us.

The Autumn is about to start so trying to get as many berries in while I can!

Ingredients

250ml almond milk (or oat, rice or coconut milk)
1 banana
Handful strawberries
Handful blueberries
1 banana
Handful redcurrants or any other summer berries you have
2 dates
1 tbsp almond butter
1 tsp acai berry powder
1 tsp maca powder
1 tsp chia seeds
1 tsp flax seeds
1 tsp hemp powder
2 ice cubes

Method

Blend all ingredients in the blender and pour into a cup – literally easier than making toast!

Love & health,
Lauren

Chocolate Covered Figs

chocolate-figs

Check out the post I made about the awesome plant-based restaurant in Marbella, Gioia. They gave me the idea for this super easy dessert. It really is an excellent addition to any dinner party table, and couldn’t be easier to make. Also nice for kids as it’s fruit – but it’s chocolatey! 🙂

Ingredients

Chocolate sauce recipe
4 fresh figs
Handful almonds, crushed

Method

Make the sauce in a small saucepan then pour it over the figs.

Top with the crushed almonds and leave in the fridge to set.

Love & health,

Lauren

 

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

stuffed-peppers

Look at my wrinkly peppers! 🙂  I recently came back from Spain and they seem to ‘stuff’ a lot of food there so it inspired me to do stuffed peppers. My mum always made them for us growing up so not sure why I don’t do them more often – probably because she made them with meat so I associate it with that but I’ve made these delicious veggie ones and they turned out so yummy.

You can of course leave out the goat’s cheese if you want them vegan. We don’t eat cow’s milk dairy here and rarely even goat’s milk but I don’t mind the odd bit of goat’s cheese and Braxton really loved it too. The lentils and beans mean this meal is filled with plant-based protein.

Ingredients (for 2 people)

2 large red peppers
1 cup brown basmati rice
Half a cup of lentils
1 tin organic black beans
1 zucchini
1 tbsp bouillon
¼ tsp cumin
Himalayan salt and black pepper
A bit of soft goat’s cheese, cut up in very small cubes

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.

Cook the rice first according to the instructions, along with the lentils in the same saucepan. They both take quite a while so allow ample time.

When it has been cooking about 10 minutes, add the bouillon.

Once the water from the rice and lentils is very nearly all evaporated but there is still a tiny bit at the bottom, drain the black beans or kidney beans and add them. Mix them through the rice and lentils and leave on a low heat for a minute.

Now grate the zucchini directly into the saucepan and mix that around. Add the cumin, salt & pepper and mix. Now add the goat’s cheese and mix. Save a few pieces of goat’s cheese for after. Turn off the heat.

Cut the tops off the peppers and take out the insides and wash thoroughly.

Place them on a baking tray upright and fill with the rice mixture.

Put them in the oven for about 20 minutes. After 20 minutes add a few pieces of the goat’s cheese to the top and leave in for another 5-10 minutes.

Serve hot.

Love & health,
Lauren

Vegan Buckwheat Pancakes

Buckwheat Maca Pancakes

Sunday mornings should really be all about pancakes, and my baby boy deserves the best! Such a great baby-led weaning food as it’s so easy for them to hold and feed themselves. This recipe uses only healthy, natural ingredients so it’s still full of nutrients, especially as I added a load of maca powder in there.

Braxton absolutely devoured these – and Daniel and I had no problem polishing them off!

I topped it with some almond butter and homemade chocolate sauce but you can use anything you like.

 

Ingredients

2 flax eggs (2 tbsp ground flax seed mixed with 2 tbsp water)
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 heaped tsp baking powder
1.5 ripe bananas
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
1 cup almond milk (or any other non-dairy milk)
Coconut oil for cooking

Method

Make the flax eggs by mixing the flax seed with water in a small bowl and leaving it to the side.

Add all the ingredients to a food processor and wizz until smooth.

Heat some coconut oil in a pan and when hot, add a small ladle full of the mixture in a pancake shape. It will only need about a minute, then flip it and do another minute, or until you think it’s cooked through.

Continue until the mixture is finished.

 

Top with almond butter, homemade chocolate sauce or maple syrup (or all 3!)

Love & health,
Lauren