Pumpkin Oat Muffins

This time of year we do many things pumpkin and that includes nearly a weekly batch of some sort of pumpkin muffins or bread!  Growing up there was nothing more that I enjoyed than a muffin!  Even as an adult when I wanted something sweet I craved muffins.  In most cases, muffins are essentially a morning cake, not so healthy given they are loaded with unhealthy oils, sugar and white flour.  I love muffins because they are quick and easy to pull together, they feel like a treat compared to a bowl of oatmeal, they freeze and travel well.  For a working mom (or any mom/dad for that matter) muffins are king when you need a quick, healthy breakfast for zombie like munchkins in the morning.   I like to prep and mix the dry ingredients in a big mixing bowl and prep the muffin tin the night before. Then in the morning I quickly whip together the wet ingredients and combine everything up and pop them in the oven before I go to work.  The girls wake up to a heavenly pumpkin spice … [Read more...]

Celery Juice & Morning Juices for Children

Juicing first thing in the day can be intimidating, at least for me it is because the juicer itself can seem like a beast to clean!!  Even simple juices, like celery juice mean extra clean up than a fruit bowl or quick smoothie.  As a hurried Mom in the mornings the clean up in itself is often why I don't juice every day. But when I take the time to build a less rushed AM routine and decide to juice (usually when hubby is around to help clean up), I feel so amazing, energized and for the rest of the day my eating is usually cleaner and I have overall better digestion. The kiddos also LOVE fresh juice!!  My children waking up to their morning juices and would happily have me make them a big glass of apple juice every morning.  While I love making them fresh juice, I don't love all the concentrated sugar they get from the apple juice alone so I dilute by adding in a cucumber or a few stalks of celery per apple used.  They don't taste the veggies and still get their fresh … [Read more...]

Nutritionally Nice Nutella

Every Christmas my Mum would buy a box of Ferraro Rocher chocolates for an evening treat.  Us kids would anticipate the moment when she would reach up on to the high shelf in our kitchen cupboard and bring down the hazelnut delights.  Savoring every bite I would eat mine off in layers, eating the outer chocolate-nut coating, gently nibbling the wafer-like interior to get to the rich hazelnut cream that has my mouth watering now!  Ohh did I love that interior gooeyness!!  I wished for just a spoonful of just that alone! Little did I know that Nutella was essentially just that! Nutella is undoubtedly the best tasting and marketed hazelnut spread on the market.  Traditionally Italians spread this on bread or toast for breakfast but these days people make ice cream, cakes, cookies, serve it on crepes, sandwiches, you name it.  My husband discovered Nutella while we honeymooned in Italy having it every morning with his cappuccinos.   While delicious, Nutella is dessert-like, high in … [Read more...]

Pumpkin Delights

It February already! Wow! I’m both shocked and excited because once we get through February we are over the hump for winter and spring is around the corner.   Despite it being February and we are officially past pumpkin season I noticed in our storage room how many cans of pumpkin we still have. May have over stocked this year but as you have seen from past blogs…we LOVE PUMPKIN!! The recipe below for Pumpkin Delights (had to come up with a name for these on the fly to boost excitement in my sleepy my girlies!!) came about from a kitchen scramble after realizing what little was left in the house for breakfast. Someone needs to hit the grocery store!! I was short on my gluten-free flour mix but we had a big old container of oats!   Given how many times we have had oats these past few weeks, knew I had to come up with something different and so these Pumpkin Delights were born. I was super excited and delighted (hence the name) to see how well these Pumpkin Delights turned out. … [Read more...]

Crunchy Millet Granola

School is back in session this week and I've got our morning meals ready to go with a new yummy homemade granola! Love having something quick and easy to serve the kiddos in the morning that will fuel their growing bodies and expanding minds.  Cereal used to be my go-to but I have a love/hate relationship with cereal as a mom. I love that it provides a quick, objection-less meal for kids in the morning but I don’t love the sugar content and nutritionally low quality of the ingredients that you find in your typical cereal. Despite its limiting qualities, I do have to say that I really LOVE cereal.  I’m an honest recovering cereal addict. I could eat a bowl (or two) for three meals a day, every day and be sooo happy! I just LOVE the stuff!! This is where knowledge gets in the way, but knowing what I do about nutrition and what growing young bodies need, I had to cut off our family’s relationship with packaged cereal for breakfast. For years cereal was not only a meal, but also a … [Read more...]

Espresso Balls

I am not a big coffee drinker, tea is my jam, but sometimes I smell my husbands cup and I crave a little or there are definitely mornings when I need a little extra something to get me going in the morning.  And a chocolate sweet treat....need I say anything about that?  Hmm nope!  These banging espresso balls cover all these bases.  Naturally sweetened by the dates with a little protein and omega-3 kick from the walnuts plus the antioxidants from the raw cacao powder. Seriously why don't I make these espresso balls more often??  I love to make a batch of two of my espresso balls, place them in a labeled container and store them in the freezer so I can grab a few when ever I need them.  I do the same with my sunflower butter balls, carrot cake balls and protein balls which the kids can grab whenever they want a snack or something a little extra to keep them going. With Christmas just days away, these espresso balls were made for that magical morning when already my early bird risers … [Read more...]

Detox Oatmeal Cookie

Detox oatmeal cookies maybe I need to find a new name for this recipe because I know it sounds like an oxymoron right?? One should probably take a break from all cookies during a detox right?  Or what are you adding to these "treats". Stay with me!  We are still on a high from the fun of the festivities (and several helpings of pie, cookies and sweets), my kids get crazy grumpy when I suggest we take a break from dessert or treats.  Who wouldn't right?? Oats, chia and flax to the rescue!  Instead of saying we're going to skip dessert, I offer them some healthier options. These"detox" oatmeal cookies are my solution to the kiddos dessert while still giving them a good dose of fiber, healthy fats and vitamins. This is one of desserts or "treats" on rotation for the next few weeks and probably in the new year as well.  A simple and quick to make oatmeal cookie that can be made with or without the chocolate chips.  I made half the batch with Enjoy Life Chocolate Chunks (2-3 chunks … [Read more...]

Pumpkin Breakfast Cookie

Pumpkin Spice Breakfast Cookies Anyone who knows me, knows I LOVE all things pumpkin! Come October I stock up on my sugar pumpkins and cans of pumpkin and get busy in the kitchen on many things pumpkin! Trader Joe’s is totally in my corner! This year they have even MORE pumpkin items than normal! I’m talking pumpkin pasta, pumpkin butter, pumpkin gluten free pancake & waffle mix, pumpkin bread mix and even pumpkin cheerios!! Seriously awesome!! Such inspiration to whip of so many tasty treats of my own! Thanks to celebrating Canadian Thanksgiving and many weeks of houseguests, I have already made many pumpkin pies and we haven’t even gotten through Halloween yet!! Pumpkin pie will always be a favorite but I also extend the pumpkin love into muffins, cakes and of course cookies! Now that school is in full swing, I thought I’d try something new, Breakfast Cookies! I have tried these before with mixed success, one child loves, one hates or they haven’t kept well. I had all … [Read more...]

Mama’s Fig Bars

School for the kids has started but the produce section is still rich with end of summer fruit and veggies! We are eating as much of these goodies as we can. Lots of peaches, nectarines, plums, berries, figs, summer squash, local corn, tomatoes, we love it all!! One of my favorite end of summer fruits is figs! I love grilling or sautéing them in balsamic vinegar and throwing in a salad or cutting them up and throwing them in our overnight-oats or cereal. My girls are less wild about eating them right out of the fruit bowl but once cut up, cooked or baked they love them, too. Their natural sweetness, like medjool dates, lends itself well to lots of dishes acting as a key sweetener. Figs nutritionally offer a number of essential minerals (magnesium, calcium, copper and potassium along with vitamin K and B6 and are high in fiber. When figs are dried their nutritional value increases. For example half a cup of fresh figs contains as much calcium as a half a cup of milk but only two large … [Read more...]

Nuts About You Granola

School is officially in gear for us for another year!  This year should be a little easier for us logistically but I will still need to get my meal plans back in order to tackle this year.  More on meal planning and prep work coming soon to the blog.  I have a few tips that have helped me tackle the week and kept healthy meals on the table and in lunch boxes for the kiddos and parents alike! To start the after school run I made a batch of grain-free granola.  I made a variety of variations of this mix depending on what I have on hand.  Today I had a good assortment of nuts so did a good mix of almonds, cashews, walnuts and pecans.  I was out of my large coconut flakes along with goji berries and dates so I used smaller coconut flakes, some dried cherries (unsulfured and unsweetened) and chopped up some dried figs.   Throw in what you have on hand.  I  have even throw in some of the "healthy" chocolate coated M&M like candies from Trader Joe's (the dye free kind) when I was … [Read more...]