Gluten Free Pumpkin Bread

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Yummy, yummy, yummy!  Summer is coming to a close, fall is getting close which means the season of everything pumpkin is right around the corner!!!  This is great news not only for our tastebuds, but also for nutrition!  Pumpkin is great for you and has lots of vitamins and minerals!

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Notice that the pin revolves around pumpkin and the immune system?  Another great thing about pumpkin season is that it coincides with the beginning of the dreaded cold and flu season.  It’s great, because pumpkin is excellent for the immune system!  Yay!

Okay, so we know pumpkin is good for us, but let’s talk about the taste!  It’s delicious!!  A lot of pumpkin treats this time of year are baked goods, and a lot of baked goods means a lot of gluten.  If you’re one of the individuals that avoids gluten, this could mean bad news for you.  However, in addition to this pumpkin bread recipe being moist and delicious, it’s also gluten free!!!  Double yay!  Another plus is that it’s super easy to make…just a few ingredients in a blender or food processor into a bread pan and into the oven.  Wa-la, pumpkin goodness!

Before we get to the recipe, I do want to mention that after making this basic recipe, I realized that next time I would probably add chopped walnuts and raisins for sure.  This recipe is fantastic as is, but add-ins, such as raisins, dried cranberries, chocolate chips, coconut, or chopped nuts of your choice, are completely fine and definitely something to keep in mind!

GLUTEN FREE PUMPKIN BREAD

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups gluten free oats
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup or honey (I used maple syrup)
  • 15-ounce can organic pumpkin puree (make sure the can lining is BPA free)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice (or combine 1 1/2 tsp. worth of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves)

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line a bread pan with parchment paper (as shown – this will come in handy when taking the bread loaf out of the pan after baking).  Lightly grease the pan and paper.

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2.) Add the oats to a food processor or blender and process on high until it reaches a consistency of gritty flour.

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3.) Add the rest of the ingredients to the oats in the food processor and process on high until completely combined and smooth.

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4.) Poor the batter into the prepared bread pan and bake in the oven for 33-35 minutes.  Take the bread out of the oven and poke a toothpick in the center of the bread.  If the toothpick comes out clean, allow the bread to cool in the pan.  If not, cover the top of the bread with aluminum foil (this will protect the top from getting burnt while the inside is cooking completely) and place back in the oven for 3 minute increments until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.  Let the bread cool in the pan for at least 10 minutes.

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5.) Remove the bread from the pan and use a knife to cut into slices.

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6.) Transfer slices to a plate and serve.

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You’re going to love this stuff!  So good and so good for you!  Happy pumpkin season!  Enjoy! 🙂

Baked Sweet Potato Salad

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I LOVE this salad!  Sweet potatoes were on sale on my last grocery shopping trip, so I decided to try something new with them, and this salad was the result!  I’ve mentioned the health benefits of sweet potatoes many many times before, and anybody that follows my blog knows that I eat tons of sweet potatoes, but don’t eat regular potatoes!  The following pin shows some of the reasons why sweet potatoes always win in a health competition with regular potatoes!

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The fact that I prefer the taste of sweet potatoes over regular potatoes is just an added bonus!

Anyway…this salad…YUM!  This thing makes for a fantastic meal, and provides you with gobs of veggies!  It’s quite easy to put together, and have I mentioned YUM?!  Alright, let’s get to it!

BAKED SWEET POTATO SALAD

Ingredients (makes two servings):

  • 1 large sweet potato, chopped into cubes
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • garlic powder
  • sea salt
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup + 1 Tbsp. red onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 7-8 cups baby spinach

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Wash and chop your sweet potato.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the sweet potato on the baking sheet.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic powder and sea salt.  Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes.

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2.) Prepare your dressing:  In a small bowl, add the avocado and mash with a fork.  Chop up 1 tomato and add it to the avocado.  Mash with a fork a bit more.  Add 1 Tbsp. red onion and the yogurt.  Sprinkle with sea salt and stir to combine.

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3.) Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat.  Add 1/2 cup of chopped red onion.  Cook for 5 minutes.  Add the other chopped tomato, cook for 1 minute.  Add the spinach, sprinkle with a bit of garlic powder and sea salt.  Cook for 1-2 minutes until the spinach is slightly wilted.

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4.) Divide the spinach mixture up onto two plates.  Top with the baked sweet potato pieces, and then top with the dressing.

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5.) Stir together with a fork and serve.

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Like I said, YUM!  Enjoy! 🙂

Veggie Stuffed Chicken “Sandwiches”

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Oh my gosh!!! These chicken “sandwiches” that I made are absolutely adorable!  Eating gluten-free, sometimes I really miss just throwing a sandwich together for lunch or dinner, so I am constantly looking for different ideas for “bread” that isn’t really bread.  This evening, I had baked some chicken breasts, and I noticed how much the outside looked like it could pass for bread – LIGHT BULB!  A chicken “sandwich” in which the chicken is the bread.  It turned out wonderfully!  I mean, look!

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And yes, it tastes just as scrumptious as it looks!  It was amazing!

Another plus when it comes to using chicken breast as bread is that chicken has a lot of health benefits!  Of course, we all know that it’s an excellent source of protein, but it goes much further than that!  The following pin lists some health benefits of chicken and links to a site that describes 7 impressive benefits of chicken.

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Awesome!  Plus, um, these chicken sandwiches are so yummy, guys!  You can really use any fillings you would like, but I gotta say that the mixture I made to fill the sandwich really is amazing.  Let’s get to it!

VEGGIE STUFFED CHICKEN “SANDWICHES”

Ingredients: 2 servings

  • 1 large chicken breast (6-8 ounces)
  • 1/3-1/2 small head of cauliflower, cut into slices and small florets
  • 1 small red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 4 cups of baby spinach and arugula (mixed), finely chopped
  • 2 ounces shredded cheese (I used a hard goat’s milk cheddar)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. olive oil
  • garlic granules
  • sea salt, to taste

Directions:

1.) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breast with garlic granules, and place in a baking dish.  bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes until baked through.

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2.) Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place the prepared cauliflower on the baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with garlic granules.  When the chicken has 25 minutes left to bake, place the cauliflower in the oven and bake for 25 minutes along with the chicken.

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3.) While the cauliflower and chicken are baking, heat 1 1/2 tsp. of olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat.  Add the onion and garlic.  Cook for 3-4 minutes until tender.  Add the spinach and arugula, and cook until completely wilted, about 2-3 minutes.  Remove from heat, and stir in the shredded cheese.  Mix completely.

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4.) When the chicken breast is done cooking, cut it in half length-wise.  These will be your two buns.  Cut each of the them in half width wise creating a top bun and a bottom bun for each of them.  Place a layer of cauliflower on the bottom bun, and top with a layer of the spinach and arugula mixture.

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5.) Sprinkle with a small bit of sea salt, and then place the top bun on top, creating a sandwich.

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Dig in!  Enjoy! 🙂

Butternut Squash Porridge

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Okay, this is my new favorite breakfast (until I come across my next new favorite breakfast 😉 )  But for now, this is it!  I LOVE that butternut squash is a vegetable!  It’s SO versatile, and has so many uses.  And now, I’ve got a new one for you – porridge, or hot cereal, you could really call it either or, but once you try it, you will definitely call it delicious!

Yes, I have professed my love for butternut squash many times before on here, but I can’t help it!  Check out this pin with some great health benefits of butternut squash!

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Look at all those nutrients!  No wonder why I love this stuff!  Oh, and as a HUGE added bonus, when you are baking the butternut squash for this recipe, it will fill your house with some amazing smells!  Your house will smell like a bakery or doughnut shop, and your mouth will be watering!

BUTTERNUT SQUASH PORRIDGE

Ingredients – makes one serving

  • 2 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
  • pinch of stevia
  • 1/2 tsp. alcohol free vanilla
  • 2-3 fresh strawberries chopped
  • handful of fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 – 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1-2 Tbsp. unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp. chia seeds

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  In a small bowl, add your butternut squash, cinnamon, nutmeg, and stevia.  Toss to coat.

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2.) Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and spread out the butternut squash on the sheet.  Bake for 50-60 minutes till the squash is tender at 350 degrees.

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3.) Place in a bowl, add the vanilla, and mash with a fork.

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4.) Add the almond milk, strawberries, blueberries, coconut, and chia seeds.

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Now get ready to have a new favorite, because you will be so addicted once you try this!  YU-UUU-UUUUM!!!  Enjoy! 🙂

Healthy Veggie and Egg Stir Fry

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This stuff makes the BEST breakfast ever!!!  It is so yummy and has an enormous amount of vitamins and minerals.  Of course, as I’ve mentioned (or gone on and on about) before, the eggs in this are fantastic for you.

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Not only do the eggs in this provide all these great things, but it also gives this dish a great punch of protein to keep you satisfied right up until lunchtime!  The veggies in this provide even more nutrition!

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Whoa, baby!  I don’t even think it’s possible to cram in any more nutrition!  See why this would make such a great start to your day?  This is my go to breakfast right now!  Also, it’s really easy to make, and that’s always a HUGE plus!

HEALTHY VEGGIE AND EGG STIR FRY

Ingredients: makes 2 servings

  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 cup shredded turnip
  • 1 cup chopped red onion
  • 2-3 cups chopped arugula
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil or coconut oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic granules
  • sea salt, to taste
  • Plain greek yogurt, for topping (optional)

Directions

1.) Prepare all of your veggies.

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2.) Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium/high heat.  Add the onion and carrots, and cook for about 8 minutes, stirring often.

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3.) While the carrots and onion are cooking, place the eggs and egg whites in a small bowl, and whisk till frothy.  Set aside.

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4.) Add the shredded turnip to the frying pan, and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.

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5.) Add the arugula, whisked eggs, garlic granules, and sea salt.  Stir to combine.  Cook until the arugula is wilted, and the egg is cooked.

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6.) Transfer to plates, and top with a dollop of plain greek yogurt, if desired, to serve.

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YUM!  Enjoy! 🙂

 

Slow Cooker Applesauce Chicken with Sweet Potatoes

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Oh. Wow.  This is a really simple slow cooker meal, but it is SO yummy and hearty!  It makes for an amazing meal!  On top of it’s awesome flavor, it is extremely good for you.  Some of the health benefits of some of the ingredients in this are explained in the following pins.

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Pretty awesome, huh?  Believe me, you will love this dinner. Plus, who doesn’t love a slow cooker meal?  Pretty much just dump and go – so simple!

SLOW COOKER APPLESAUCE CHICKEN WITH SWEET POTATOES

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 3 small sweet potatoes, washed, peeled, and cubed
  • 1/2 large red onion, chopped
  • 3/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Sea Salt to taste

Directions:

1.) Layer the sweet potato and the chicken in the slow cooker

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2.) In a small bowl, combine the applesauce, garlic powder, onion, and apple cider vinegar.  Poor over the chicken and sweet potatoes in the slow cooker.

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3.) Cook on low for 7-8 hours.

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4.) Spoon out individual chicken breasts to serve and top with the sweet potatoes.  Season with sea salt.

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Delicious! Enjoy! 🙂

Carrot Oatmeal Breakfast Muffins

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Good Morning!  I know mine certainly was thanks to these awesomely tasty and healthy carrot oatmeal breakfast muffins!  I could eat these things all day long, and ya know what?  That wouldn’t be a terrible thing since these are so good for you!  Two of the main ingredients are carrots and oatmeal, and both of these are nutrition powerhouses!

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And these are only two of the ingredients!  There’s also banana, honey, cinnamon, etc. – all SUPER good for you!  It’s easy to see why these make a great start to your day!  Plus, with them being so tasty, it’s a joy to wake up to them!

CARROT OATMEAL MUFFINS

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups gluten free oat flour
  • 1 cup gluten free oats, plus about 2-3 Tbsp for topping
  • 2 1/2 ripe bananas
  • 1 cup shredded carrots, plus a little extra for topping
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup raw honey
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 tsp. alcohol free vanilla
  • 1 Tbsp. baking powder (aluminum free)
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spray, or grease, a muffin tin with olive oil or coconut oil.  Mash the bananas in a medium sized bowl until there are no more lumps and shred one cup worth of carrots.

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2.) In the bowl you mashed the banana in, add the eggs, vanilla, honey, and almond milk.  Stir to combine completely.

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3.) In a large mixing bowl, mix together the oat flour, oats, baking powder, sea salt, and cinnamon.  Add the banana mixture to the dry ingredients and stir to combine.  Fold in the shredded carrots.  Let sit for 5-10 minutes so the milk can soak up the oats a bit.

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4.) Fill the muffin tin evenly with the batter.  Top the muffins with some oats and shredded carrots.  Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 20-23 minutes, until a toothpick in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

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5.) Allow to cool in the tin for 10-15 minutes.

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6.) Remove the muffins from the tin.  You should be able to do this by simply turning the tin upside down and giving it a gentle shake/tap on the bottom.

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Perfect start to the day!  Don’t you just want to dig in?

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DELICIOUS!  Enjoy! 🙂