No Bake Cookies! Perfect for the Busy Mommy.

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I love, love, love, LOVE no bake cookies of almost any kind!

When I’m in a rush, they are my go-to dessert.

The best part? You can make them entirely allergy free.

For your kitchen tools, all you will need is a sauce pot, a spoon for stirring, parchment paper, plastic wrap and a cookie sheet.

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First, add 1 cup honey, 1/2 cup coconut oil and 8 Tb unsweetened cocoa to your sauce pot.

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On the stove, turn the heat to medium high and bring the mixture to a boil while stirring constantly. Continue to stir as it simmers and thickens for about three minutes.

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Next, remove the mixture from the heat and add 1 cup peanut or other nut butter, 1 tsp vanilla, 1 1/2 to 2 cups gluten free old fashioned oats (gf quick oats will work too) and 1 cup shredded unsweetened raw coconut. I ran out of coconut, so we’ll just have to make believe we have some here. Stir well until all ingredients are mixed thoroughly.

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On a parchment lined cookie sheet, drop mixture by spoon fulls. Go ahead and make them whatever size you want. No bake versions break all the rules.

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Cover with plastic wrap if you’re a complete, nerdy clean freak like me. If not, still cover the cookies. It’s gross if you don’t.

Place the entire sheet in the freezer for 15 minutes or the fridge for at least an hour.

The rest of the instructions are listed below.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some no bake cookies and a cup of green tea calling my name!

No Bake Cookies. Free of most major allergens.

  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (or another unrefined oil, extra light is best)
  • 8 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 cup peanut butter or other nut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup shredded, unsweetened coconut (preferably raw)
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups GF old fashioned oats (You’ll know you have too many oats if mixture becomes hard to stir. For this reason, add oats gradually to desired consistency.)

Bring honey, coconut oil, and cocoa to a boil. Turn down heat and simmer for three minutes or until thickened.

Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter, vanilla, coconut, and oatmeal. Drop by small to medium spoon fulls onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. Refrigerate until set. If you really want those cookies ‘NOW’, put them in the freezer for fifteen minutes. If you have any left (HIGHLY DOUBTFUL), Store in a ziploc bag or airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.

Happy No Baking!!!!

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Allergy Free Peach Crisp? Bring It On.

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Can’t have oats? No problem.

Can’t have flour? Again… no problem.

Can’t have almonds? Uhhhh….this could be a problem. But you could just switch out one ingredient. Problem solved.

Peaches which are crisped.

Peaches which are crisped.

Peach Crisp: No Gluten, Oats, Dairy, Eggs, Soy, Etcetera

  • 8 cups fresh peaches, sliced (I strongly recommend fresh, home frozen or home canned peaches.)
  • 1 Tb cornstarch or other thickener, such as tapioca starch
  • 2 Tb agave /or/ 3 Tb your choice of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup almond flour/meal
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla 
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar or 1 Tb. raw agave
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 (scant) tsp cinnamon
  • 4 Tablespoons Earth Balance

In a large bowl combine the peaches, cornstarch and 2 Tb agave.

Grease a 9×13 glass casserole dish.

Transfer peach mixture to dish.

Rinse out the bowl and once it is dried, combine the almond meal, vanilla, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon and Earth Balance. Mix well with a mixer to combine. Don’t be afraid to plunge your hands into the mixture to get it thoroughly blended if the mixer doesn’t do the trick. 

Spread topping evenly over peach mixture.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until topping is golden and the peach mixture is bubbling.

Cool for at least 15 minutes on a wire rack before serving.

And don't forget the Rich Whip! Or you could use chilled canned coconut milk.

And don’t forget the Rich Whip! Or you could use chilled canned coconut milk. Just refrigerate the can, drain off the liquid and whip the solid milk.

 

See? Rich Whip is just like the real deal! Healthy? No! Delicious? YES!

See? Rich Whip is just like the real deal! Healthy? No! Delicious? YES!

Serve your peach crisp warm with a dollop of your favorite whipped cream replacer. Or just eat it all by itself. It's that good!

Serve your peach crisp warm with a dollop of your favorite whipped cream replacer. Or just eat the crisp all by itself. It’s that good!

Happy Warm and Yummy Deliciousness!

Thursday Things

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Basketball season….. can we have the kids’ end of season tournaments NOW please?

As fun as it is watching my big babies stuff, foul, box out and slam dunk, I am ready to get back to my routines.

Like baking and taking last minute cell phone pictures of the results to share with all two of you who read my posts.

But for now, I’ll just share a few neato mosquito products I’ve run across – literally run, as in running through the store on my way to the next game – at the market.

Van’s Snack Bars

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These little guys are just….YUM! The cranberry variety tastes like gingerbread with generous servings of dried cranberries in each bite.

Click on the link above to view all flavors, ingredients and other nutrition information.

Van’s Crackers

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They may be small, but, boy howdy! These are some GOOD crackers!

To view and read more about these delightful little bites, click on the link above.

Justin’s Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups *

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If I ever want to feel like all is right with the world, I buy myself a package of these glorious dairy free, gluten free cups of happiness.

Seriously. They boost your endorphins or something like that.

Forget runner’s high. Eat peanut butter cups instead. WAY more euphoric, I guarantee.

*I have found that ONLY the DARK chocolate variety is dairy free. When you click on the link, it will take you to the milk chocolate ingredients. If you cannot partake of dairy, be sure to click on the little ‘dark chocolate’ guy to see his ingredients. That sounded weird. Sorry. Just….you know what I mean.

Bakery on Main Granola

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I will admit, this stuff is a little more spendy than I would like it to be.

But, man! Is it GOOD!

I especially like the Cranberry Maple kind. Deeeeeelicious!

And, honestly, a 1/2 cup serving with your choice of milk will fill your stomach cavity and keep you going until lunch time. It’s that hearty!

Click on the link above to see other varieties and nutrition information.

So there you have it! Some helpful little hints to help you eat well and wise (Don’t diss my peanut butter cups. Peanut butter is full of protein….and dark chocolate has antioxidants!).

Happy Busy Days!

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake. It Makes Winter Bearable. But Your Jeans Unwearable.

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Sorry about that title.

But it is the truth. Why not just tell it like it is?

But it’s so good, so decadent, you won’t be able to resist. So just hit the gym a little more often and you’ll still be able to fit into those Levi’s. Or Lawmans. Or Hash Jeans. Wait. I’m dating myself.

Shall we begin?

My oldest daughter requested this delightful treat the weekend after her heart stopping accident (see previous post). Not being able to find one that fit our allergy specifications, I found a recipe in my old Pillsbury cookbook and revamped it to be allergy free and also to contain less sugar.

Excuse me while I take a moment to get down with my bad self. *clap clap clap*

And this is what we came up with:

Allergy Free/Vegan/Low Sugar Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

  • 1 1/4 cups gluten free flour
  • 2/3 cup sugar (I used evaporated cane crystals. You can use coconut sugar, date sugar or even 1/2 cup agave.)
  • 2 Tb. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup almond or other milk (I used unsweetened – highly recommended here)
  • 2 Tb melted Earth Balance spread
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sugar (This recipe will work best if you use some form of crystallized sugar rather than agave for this step.)
  • 2 Tb unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Dash salt
  • 1 1/3 cups very hot water (120-130 degrees F)

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, 2/3 cup sugar, 2 Tb cocoa, baking powder, and 1/2 tsp salt. Blend in almond milk, Earth Balance and vanilla. Mix well. 

Spread batter in an ungreased 8″ square baking dish. Your batter will not resemble traditional cake batter at all. It will be more like a dough.

In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup sugar, 2 Tb cocoa and dash salt. Mix well to combine. Sprinkle evenly over cake batter. Pour hot water evenly over sugar mixture.

Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until center is set and firm to the touch.

And for the love of Green Acres, serve it warm! With coffee! 

This is extra good with dairy free whipped cream (such as Rich’s or refrigerated canned coconut milk) or vanilla ice cream (such as Coconut Bliss).

Be aware that even though the sugar is reduced in the recipe, it is still quite sweet. So take a small serving to begin with. And then you can, of course, take another small serving after that. I think that’s reasonable.

What your cake should look like when it is done. (Yes, I doubled mine. I have two seventeen year old man children).

What your cake should look like when it is done. (Yes, I doubled mine. I have two seventeen year old man children).

Happy Warm and Cozy Dessert Days!

Peanut Butter Cookies: Three Different Delicious Ways to Make Them!

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Who here does not LOVE peanut butter cookies?

You DON’T? And you’re not allergic to peanuts?!?

I cannot even comprehend.

For the rest of us with normal taste buds, today’s post is a festival of peanut butter cookie goodness.

I could eat them every day.

But I don’t. Because I don’t want to be a Fatty Two By Four.

Shall we begin?

Vegan Three Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies

  • 1/4 cup plain, unsweetened applesauce
  • 3/4 cup sugar (your choice here: coconut, date, turbinado, or the white cancerous kind…)
  • 1 cup peanut butter (I use Adam’s. Please, don’t use peanut butter flavored shortening here….otherwise known as Skippy or Jif. Yuck.)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine all three ingredients with a mixer.

Once ingredients are combined, shape dough into small balls and place on an ungreased (or better yet, parchment paper lined) cookie sheet or stone. Criss cross each cookie ball with a fork.

Bake for ten minutes (or until golden, so they may need to bake a little longer depending on your oven).

Remove from oven and let sheet sit on a cooling rack for ten minutes before transferring cookies to another cooling rack.

Now for recipe number two! Identical to the first recipe except for one ingredient. Yes, you’ll notice I did copy and paste from the last recipe. I have things to do! Like eat peanut butter cookies.

Three Ingredient Gluten/Dairy Free Peanut Butter Cookies

  • 1 chicken or duck egg
  • 3/4 cup sugar (your choice here: coconut, date, turbinado, or the white cancerous kind…)
  • 1 cup peanut butter (I use Adam’s. Please, don’t use peanut butter flavored shortening here….otherwise known as Skippy or Jif. Yuck.)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine all three ingredients with a mixer.

Once ingredients are combined, shape dough into small balls and place on an ungreased (or better yet, parchment paper lined) cookie sheet or stone. Criss cross each cookie ball with a fork.

Bake for ten minutes (or until golden, so they may need to bake a little longer depending on your oven).

Remove from oven and let sheet sit on a cooling rack for ten minutes before transferring cookies to another cooling rack.

And now for the more traditional peanut butter cookie, only without the allergens or Crisco like the ones Mom used to make. (You know what I’m talking about if you’re a child of the eighties or older. You probably also drank Tab. And ate copious amounts of Doritos. Which is why you are here because now you have food allergies or sensitivities.)

Allergy Free Peanut Butter Cookies

  • 1/2 cup Earth Balance spread
  • 3/4 cup natural peanut butter (Such as Adam’s)
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar (coconut sugar works well here too)
  • 1 Tb gluten free vanilla
  • 1 chicken/duck egg OR 1 Tb ground flaxseed and 3 Tb water
  • 1 3/4 cups gluten free flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • (Optional) 1/2 cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

In a medium mixing bowl, combine Earth Balance, peanut butter, sugar, vanilla and egg or replacer. Beat until thoroughly creamed together. 

Next add the dry ingredients: Gluten free flour, salt and soda. Blend until completely combined, being sure to mix in any dry ingredients from the bottom of the bowl.

If desired, add the chocolate chips.

Roll dough into 1 inch balls and place 2 inches apart on an ungreased or parchment lined cookie sheet. Criss cross each ball with a fork. 

Bake cookies for 10 minutes or until edges are golden and cookies are set.

Remove from oven and let sheet cool on a wire rack for at least ten minutes before transferring cookies to another cooling rack.

While cookies are cooling, make a nice pot of coffee or heat up a mug of chocolate almond milk to wash them down with.

 

Happy Being Nutty!

Gingerbread. Allergy Free and No One Will Ever Know!

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Gingerbread Man

What are the holidays (or even winter, for that matter) without a warm serving of gingerbread?

Not much, in my estimation.

So I created a recipe that is both allergy and taste bud friendly so our winters and holidays won’t be filled with gingerbread-less gloom.

Here is what you’ll need (the sugar forgot to show up for the photo shoot, but he should be on the list):

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First, grease a 9×13 pan and set your oven to 350.

Next, cream together 1/2 cup sugar (or 1/3 cup agave) and 1/2 cup Earth Balance.

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Next, add 1 chicken or duck egg OR 1 TB ground flaxseed with 3 TB water (or Ener-g egg replacer works nicely as well), 1/2 tsp vanilla and 2/3 cup molasses (do not use dark molasses. That would be bitter.) Blend well.

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Now, add 2 1/2 cups GF flour blend, 1 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp ginger and 1 tsp cinnamon. Blend well.

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And then your batter will look like this:

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But don’t worry, because now you will add the 1 cup of hot water. And please, for the love of your kitchen ceiling, DO NOT BLEND IN THE WATER WITH THE MIXER! Hand stir it in. Please. Or you’ll be up until two in the morning cleaning your ceilings and everything else within a twenty mile radius. Or, you can simply hold a towel or waxed paper over the bowl while mixing on very, very low speed. If you dare.

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When you’re done with that step, you’ll have a batter that looks very unappetizing. Ah, but looks can be deceitful!

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Spread batter into your greased pan:

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Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool for about 10 to 15 minutes on a wire rack.

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Serve on paper plates. Really. I only put this piece on my grandmother’s china for you all.

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And top with Rich Whip or coconut milk whipped cream (Refrigerate 1 can coconut milk for an hour. DO NOT SHAKE! Open the top side and scoop out the solid coconut. Add sweetener, if desired, and whip to your favorite consistency.)

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And then gloat, because you get to have gingerbread just like everybody else.

Gingerbread: No Dairy, Gluten, Eggs or Other Funky Stuff

  • 1/2 cup sugar or 1/3 cup agave
  • 1/2 cup Earth Balance
  • 1 chicken or duck egg OR 1 TB ground flax seed and 3 TB water, mixed together (Ener-g Egg Replacer works nicely as well)
  • 2/3 cup light or original (not dark!) molasses
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups GF flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 cup very hot water

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9×13 pan.

Cream sugar and Earth Balance. Add egg or replacer, molasses and vanilla. Blend well. Next, add gluten free flour, soda, cinnamon and ginger. Blend. Stir in hot water or cover bowl with towel or waxed paper and blend on the lowest possible setting. 

Spread batter in prepared pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool on a wire rack for ten to fifteen minutes. Cut into squares and serve with dairy free whipped cream.

Happy Indulging!

Espresso Peppermint Mocha Crinkles

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This, my friends, is what Christmas tastes like.

WARNING! Before you make these, you may want to purchase the Insanity or Jillian Michaels workout videos. Because you’re going to eat them all. You won’t be able to stop! They are so devastatingly delicious.

Espresso Peppermint Mocha Cookies
  • 2 cups GF flour 
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (yes, you read that right) baker’s cocoa powder (such as Hershey’s)
  • 2/3 cup white sugar 
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup vegetable oil (I used extra light olive oil)
  • 1.5  Tablespoons espresso powder, ground super fine in a coffee grinder 
  • 4  eggs OR the equivelent in egg replacer
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 to 1/2  teaspoon peppermint extract (Amount is depending on how ‘pepperminty’ you like it – the smaller amount will give a hint of peppermint while the full amount will definitely make the peppermint take center stage. Do not double your extract if you double the recipe or it will be too overpowering.)
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar (for rolling the cookies)

Combine all of your wet ingredients and blend with a stand or hand mixer. Next, blend together your dry ingredients in a separate bowl and then add to wet ingredients. Blend until mixed well and ingredients form a dough.

If using GF flour, you may notice that the mixture is a bit dry. Mine was, so I gradually added small amounts of  unsweetened almond milk until I felt it was the right consistency of cookie dough. Not too dry or wet but tacky to the touch.

Optional: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. I did not do this. I wanted to get at these cookies!
When you are ready to bake your cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. (Do this step if you can. It’s a great kitchen tool!)
Roll the dough into 1 Tablespoon sized balls. Dip half of the dough ball into the powdered sugar, then place the ball onto the prepared cookie sheet, powdered sugar-side up. Place the dough balls at least 1 inch apart on the cookie sheet. When you have filled a cookie sheet, very lightly and gently press down on each ball, slightly flattening it.
Bake the cookies on the center rack of the oven for 8-9 minutes, until the cookies begin to crack on top, and the visible insides of the cookies appear gooey.  Do not over bake the cookies, as they will become dry and crumbly.  Let cookies cool on sheet for a few minutes before transferring to wire rack. 
And proceed to eat the entire batch. Not really. Yes, really. Really.
Happy Delicious Days!

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