Breakfast Bites: Mango-Coconut Smoothie

The last thing many of us want to do first thing in the morning is prepare a complex, time consuming meal. Most of us just want to grab our coffee and go, but we shouldn’t skip on the opportunity to load up on nutritious, fueling food that will help us get going in the morning. Breakfast bites is here to solve that problem! With simple, quick recipes that will help you start your day off on the right foot, you won’t have any more excuses for skipping a meal.

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Ingredients
1 ½ cups of frozen mango
½ a banana
½ – 1 cup of coconut water
2 tbsp of coconut cream
Coconut chips (optional)

Directions

  1. In a blender combine all the ingredients aside from the coconut chips.
  2. Blend until desire consistency is reached.
  3. Top with coconut chips and enjoy the start of your day!

Saturday Morning Banana “Bread” Pancakes

Image may contain: foodGluten. Free. Two words I’m sure everyone has see pop up over the past couple of years.  Is it healthier? Should you be doing? Is it all a sham? No matter what you believe, for some people gluten is a huge problem.  Celiac disease, a condition affecting 1 in every 133 Canadians, is an autoimmune disorder in which the wheat protein gluten prompts the body to attack the villi in the small intestine. (Canadian Celiac Association, 2017) This leads to the poor absorption of essential vitamins and minerals.  Continued ingestion of gluten products may result in severe illness, and even death, in those suffering from the disorder.  So, what does that mean for you? Well, unless you have been diagnosed by a doctor as having celiac, gluten is completely safe for you to eat.  Some people argue that it is unnatural for humans to ingest wheat products, and they suggest that we would be healthier if we avoided foods containing gluten.  I think personally think that that’s a load of bull.  Out of all things humans do that s “unnatural”, I think eating a slice of bread falls pretty low on the list.  That being said, I think it’s important to make gluten free options available for those who truly need them.  Furthermore, if you feel better leaving gluten off your plate even if you have not been diagnosed, continue to do what makes you feel best.  After all, food should make you happy. I love experimenting with food, so trying to make tasty meals with ingredient restrictions is a challenge I am up for.  All diets can be delicious if you take the time to get creative!  This recipe uses simple, clean ingredients that are readily available.  With no added sugar, this naturally sweetened breakfast will be sure to fill you up without weighing you down.  Feel free to get creative with the toppings, experimenting with whatever you had on hand.

Ingredients

 1 large ripe banana

1 egg
1 tsp of vanilla
1 tsp of cinnamon
1/2 a cup of gluten free oat flour

1/2 tsp of baking powder
Coconut oil for the pan


Directions

  1. In a bowl mash the bananas with the vanilla. Add in 1 egg.
  2. Add in the oat flour and cinnamon.
  3. Stir to combine, but make sure not to over mix.In a pan over medium heat melt the coconut oil and add batter.
  4. Top with anything you like! I’m a fan of natural peanut butter, hemp hearts and bee pollen.
  1. Celiac Disease Foundation. (2017). What is Celiac Diseas?. Retrieved from https://celiac.org/celiac-disease/understanding-celiac-disease-2/what-is-celiac-disease/

Veggie Ramen

The humble mushroom.  Grown in earthy soil, hidden away in the dark, it is brought to light in the most flavourful of dishes. Full of umami, mushrooms provide flavour and body to any soup or stew.  You’ll hardly notice their isn’t.  This vegetarian, or vegan ramen minus the egg, is full of flavour that is sure to satisfy even the most carnivorous of appetites.  From oyster to lobster, enoki to  shiitake, every species of mushroom brings something to the table.  Mushrooms contain high amounts of potassium and vitamin D, as well a B vitamins niacin and riboflavin, which aid in the breakdown of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins.   Furthermore, mushrooms are a vegetable all-star when it comes to selenium.  Often found in high concentrations in meat and fish, the selenium content of 5 medium raw crimini mushrooms is a whopping 31% of your daily requirement, while white button mushrooms and Portabellos contain 22% and 21% respectively. (Tannis, 2009). Who knew something with such dark origins, would turn out to be a super food superstar?

Broth
2 litre of vegetable stock
1 tbsp of mushroom base (like this one here)
2 tbsp – 1/4 cup of soy sauce (amount is based on preference)
1 tbsp of miso paste
2 tbsps of vegetarian oyster sauce
1 tbsp of freshly grated ginger
1 garlic finely diced garlic clove
Instant or fresh ramen noodles
1 tbsp of garlic chili paste (optional)
Dash of mirin

Additions
Grilled tofu
Nori sheets
Soft boiled eggs
Chili peppers
Grilled bok choy
Green onion
Kale
Spinich
Chili flakes
Bean sprouts
Light drizzle of sesame oil to finish

Directions

  1. In a large pot combine vegetable stock, dried mushrooms, and mushroom base. Simmer for 30 minutes, or until mushrooms are rehydrated.
  2. Remove mushrooms, purée into a fine paste and add back into the stock.
  3. Add all the remaining broth ingredients (minus the noodles) and simmer on low heat for 15-20 minutes.
  4. In the last remaining minutes add the noodles and simmer until cooked.
  5. Prepare your bowl with any of the addditions you want cooked by the broth (e.g. enoki mushrooms, nori sheets, spinach, etc.) and pour the broth over top.
  6. Add the noodles, and top with any others extras.
  7. Slurp and enjoy!

  1. Tannis, A. (2009). Feed Your Skin, Starve Your Wrinkles: Eat Your Way to Firmer, More Beautiful Skin with the 100 Best Anti-Aging Foods. Beverly, MA: Fair Winds Press

Vegan Coconut Macaroons

Vegans and vegetarians are often told to eat a lot of protein, and that protein often comes from a rather simple source, beans.  No matter the variety, beans become a pantry staple for most people omitting animal products from their diet. What if I told you that with those cans of beans you could make a sweet, virtually guilt free dessert?  It’s true, all thanks to aquafaba.  What is aquafaba, you may ask, well, have you ever drained a can of chickpeas? There’s your answer.  Aquafaba is the liquid in which beans have been cooked and caned in.  The viscous liquid lends itself wonderfully to desserts traditionally calling for egg whites.  When whipped, aquafaba forms stiff peaks due to its high starch and protein content (read more here).  Aquafaba can be used for a wide variety of things, including meringues for pies, pavlovas, mousses, mayo, and you guessed it, macaroons.  This recipe is simple, minimal, and a great way to utilize an often discarded product!

Ingredients

2 – 2 ½ cups of coconut flakes

1/3 cup aquafaba (preferably from chickpeas)

1/4 tsp of cream of tarter

1 tbsp coconut oil

1/3 cup of maple syrup

1 tsp of vanilla

Pinch of cinnamon if desired

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 °F.  Spread coconut evenly on a baking sheet and toast until golden brown.
  2. Meanwhile, in a stand mixer whip the aquafaba, cream of tarter, and vanilla until stiff peaks form.
  3. When the coconut has been removed from the ov
    en and allowed to cool, add 2 cups to the aquafaba mixture, along with the
  4. maple syrup, coconut oil and cinnamon.
  5. Gently, key word GENTLY, fold in the coconut and other ingredients.
  6. If the mixture is too wet, add in a more coconut a lit
  7. tle at a time until a moist “dough” forms
  8. With a small ice cream scoop or tablespoon, scoop the mixture onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes.
  9. Once the first bake is completed, increase the over temperature 350 °F and bake for another 8-10 minutes.
  10. Let cool and enjoy as is, or top with a drizzle of melted chocolate for and added treat!

Golden Milk: I Like You a Latte

The turmeric trend is in full swing. An ingredient almost exclusively limited to curries and other savoury dishes is making its way into coffee shops near you.  The turmeric latte, aka golden milk, has become the newest trend in hot beverages. Much like its relative, ginger, the brightly coloured spice has been prized for its colour and medicinal purposes for thousands of years in Asia. Recently, the bright yellow rhizome has been praised for uses as a health food. Curcumin, the primary compound in turmeric, is responsible for its signature colour as well as its health benefits. Known for it’s anti-inflammatory properties and high levels of anti-oxidants, curcumin has been making big waves in the healthy living community. From pills to powders, curcumin is being used as a way for many to help add to their health regimen without having to down a bowl of curry every night. With its mild flavour, bright colour, and many health benefits it’s easy to see why turmeric has become the new ‘it’ thing. This recipe for my golden milk latte combines inflammation fighting turmeric, heart-healthy cinnamon, digestive aiding ginger, and calming chai tea to create a creamy vegan drink that can be served hot, or over ice for a refreshing summer drink. Feel free to play around with the flavours adding a little more, or less, of whatever you like. While I used almond milk for this recipe, cashew, hemp or coconut milk would all be lovely additions.

Ingredients
5 cups of almond milk
2 chai tea bags (or 3 tbsp of lose tea)
Star anise, cinnamon sticks, raw ginger slices, and cardamom pods
2 tbsps of ground turmeric
2 tbsps of cinnamon
1 tbsp of nutmeg
1/2 cup of raw honey or maple syrup
Coconut cream to taste
Directions
  1. In a large saucepan over medium heat combine the almond milk, chai tea, star anise, cinnamon sticks, ginger slices, and cardamom pods.  Bring to simmer and leave for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and let steep for 3 more minutes.  Remove the tea bags and whole spices.
  3. Whisk in the remaining spices and honey.
  4. Pour into a mug, stir in a little coconut cream, and sprinkle with some cinnamon and turmeric. Enjoy!