Archive for dessert

Monday, October 7th, 2013

Pumpkin Muffins

I know a lot of my posts lately have been about baking yummy muffins and bread, but it is the season when the hot weather is finally gone and the kitchen calls me. These muffins are really like eating dessert, because they are that good. Super moist, but, once again, without all the oil! Lower amount of sweetener too. No less delicious though. I also made these into mini bread loaves and they worked out perfectly.

Pumpkin Muffins

1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour

1 1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

3/4 tsp. nutmeg

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 c. pumpkin

1/3 c. apple puree (applesauce would work too)

1/4 c. canola oil

1/3 c. coconut milk

1/3 c. sucanat

1/3 c. pure maple syrup

1/3 c. coconut

1/2 c. walnuts, chopped (optional)

1/3 c. chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 12 cup muffin pan.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon.

In a separate small bowl, add the pumpkin, apple puree, oil, coconut milk, sucanat, and maple syrup and mix well.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until the flour is just barely mixed in.

Stir in the coconut, and the nuts and chocolate if using them.

Spoon into the muffin pan until 3/4 full.

Bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Enjoy!

Friday, September 27th, 2013

Banana Chocolate Swirl Bread

banana swirl bread small not auto

I found this great recipe the other day. The original recipe is great, but I lowered the fat and sweetener to make it a little healthier and it is still delicious. One of the great things about banana bread, is that the smashed banana works great as a substitute for some of the oil anyway, so it is already low in fat. So much better than a lot of quickbread recipes that have one cup of oil! Yikes!

Banana Chocolate Swirl Bread

1 1/2 cup banana, smashed

1 1/4 cup sucanat

2 tsp. pure vanilla

3 tbsp. canola oil

2/3 cup almond milk (or milk of your choice)

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

6 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa

3/4 cup boiling water (divided)

1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 8 x 4 loaf pan and I had enough to make 3 miniature loaf pans as well. These would also make great muffins. I lightly grease and then lightly flour the pans so the loaves come out very easily.

I used a food processor to smash the banana. If you don’t have a food processor, it is fine to smash it with a fork in a large bowl. Add the sucanat, vanilla, oil, and milk. Blend well.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, soda, and salt. Then add this to the wet ingredients. Stir just until the flour is absorbed. Be careful not to overmix so the bread is not tough.

In a small bowl, mix 6 tbsp. of the boiling water with the 6 tbsp. cocoa. I added in a little more water to mix it until it is smooth. Now take out about 1 1/2 cups of the batter and put it in another bowl. Add the cocoa mixture to this batter and stir until just combined.

Add the remaining 3 tbsp. of boiling water to the rest of the banana batter. If using the walnuts, add them now. Stir until just combined.

Now alternate scooping spoonfuls of chocolate batter with banana batter into the loaf pans. Fill the pans to 3/4 full. Use a knife to swirl the batters together. It will look random, but don’t worry, it taste delicious.

Put the pans into the oven and bake for about 50-55 minutes for a big loaf pan, and 25 minutes for the miniature loaf pans. If a toothpick comes out cleam, the bread is done. Wait for about 10 minutes before using a knife to go around the perimeter of the pan and then turn the pan upside down and dump out the bread. Enjoy warm!

 

Thursday, September 19th, 2013

Vegan Carmelized Pear Muffins

vegan pear muffin flower small

With all the fresh fruit around, it has been so fun finding new ways to use it. My family loves fresh pears and peaches and we eat them for dessert regularly. Sometimes for a special treat we cut them up and add a scoop of granola and pour milk on top, or just a scoop of vegan ice cream, but this recipe I found on KEEPIN’ IT KIND, is our new favorite muffin. This is not just an ordinary muffin recipe, this is a bit of heaven in your hand, and your kids will beg for them like they are dessert! Just try to stay away from them on your own and you have a challenge. The original recipe was not vegan, so just a small change was all it took. I also added some walnuts and decreased the sweet and oil just a little too. One of the reasons that I wanted to try this recipe is that one of the ingredients is coconut sugar. I had purchased some a while back and had not ever had the excuse to try it out, so I thought this was a good chance for something new. I doubled this recipe to put some in the freezer and that was a good idea, but they are too yummy and getting some to the freezer before they were eaten was a challenge.

Vegan Carmelized Pear Muffins

Wet Ingredients

1 c. almond milk (other milks would work fine too)

1 tsp. apple cider vinegar

1/4 c. canola oil (the original recipe calls for coconut oil)

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/3 c. coconut sugar

Dry Ingredients

2 c. whole wheat pastry flour

1 tbsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

Pear Mixture

3 bartlet pears, cored and sliced thin

1 tbsp. Earth Balance

4 tbsp. coconut sugar

1/2 c. walnuts, chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and prepare a 12 cup muffin tin.

Begin by adding the apple cider vinegar to the almond milk and let it sit for 10 minutes, so it turns to buttermilk.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.

I used a cast iron pan on medium heat to melt the Earth Balance and coconut sugar together. Add the sliced pears and cook, reducing them down to a kind of thick carmelized mixture. This takes about 10 minutes, depending on how juicy the pears are.

I had to soften the coconut sugar in the microwave for about 30 seconds before adding to the milk. After doing that, add the oil and vanilla and stir until well combined.

Add the milk mixture and the pear mixture to the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Add in the walnuts.

Spoon batter into the muffin cups and cook for 20-25 minutes. Just try to let them cool before eating so you don’t burn your tongue on a hot pear.

 

 

 

Monday, September 16th, 2013

Peach Crisp

My super nice friend brought me yummy vegan food the other day. It was so great that she brought me food, but it was even greater that the food was so  vegan and delicious! weaking  When I tweak recipes that are already vegan, that usually just means that I lower the fat and sugar and sometimes add something like nuts, or some whole grain ingredients to boost the nutrition, especially for baked goods. This recipe is a great way to have a yummy dessert that you don’t have to feel bad about eating.

Peach Crisp

6-10 peaches, (depending on how big they are) peeled and sliced

1 c. rolled oats

3/4 c. granola, I used a naturally sweetened one, homemade would be even better

3/4 c. Grape Nuts cereal (this is optional and can be substituted with more granola)

1/2 tsp. salt

zest of one lemon

2 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. nutmeg

1/2 c. walnuts, chopped (optional)

1/3 c. pure maple syrup

1/4 c. canola oil, or coconut oil

2-3 tbsp. water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. I used pan spray to prepare a 9 x 9 baking dish.

Spread the peaches evenly into the pan. Set aside.

Mix oats, granola, Grape Nuts, salt, lemon zest, cinnamon, nutmeg, and walnuts into a medium sized bowl.

In a separate small bowl, mix together the maple syrup, canola oil (or coconut oil), and 2 tbsp. water.

Combine the wet and dry ingredients together and if the mixture seems too dry, add the extra tbsp. of water.

Spoon mixture evenly over the peaches. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the granola mixture is golden.

 

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

Vegan Chocolate Apple Zucchini Cake

It is that time of year again when anyone you know that grows zucchini is trying to find a loving home for it. My garden was too small this year to grow any myself, so I have a few neighbors that learned how much I love to cook and also love zucchini, so now I have tons of zucchini at my house. This recipe original is here. I took out the coffee and pureed my own apple since I rarely buy applesauce and used egg replacer instead of bananas. I also changed the brown sugar to pure maple syrup.  I love to make treats that are full of hidden goodness. This recipe is definitely a winner for that reason. Anyone eating this chocolate cake would have no idea that is has apple and zucchini in it, plus it is made with whole wheat flour and vegan!  I had some extra batter and used it to make a few muffins to freeze for later. This is very rich and yummy. So enjoy!

Vegan Chocolate Apple Zucchini Cake

2 c. whole wheat flour

1/2 c. cocoa powder

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 c. canola oil

1/2 c. pureed apple (original recipe uses applesauce)

1/2 c. sucanat

1/3 c. pure maple syrup

1 tsp. vanilla

egg substitute for 3 eggs (I used Egg Replacer)

1/4 c. milk of choice (I  used almond milk)

2 c. grated zucchini

3/4 c. dark chocolate chips

3/4 c. chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 360 degrees. Prepare pan. I used pan spray to coat a 9 in. square pan.

First mix the egg substitute of choice and set it aside. Then puree the apple and grate the zucchini and set those aside.

Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt in a large bowl and set aside.

In a separate bowl, combine the canola oil, pureed apple, sucanat, pure maple syrup, vanilla, egg substitute, and milk. Stir well and add the zucchini, chocolate chips and walnuts.

Now combine the zucchini mixture to the flour mixture and stir well. It will be super thick, but it is okay. Scoop the batter into the prepared pan and put in the oven to bake for 40-50 minutes. Make sure you to do the toothpick check to make sure it is done before removing from the oven.

I let this cool before serving. We ate it with vanilla soy ice cream and it was perfect!

Sunday, August 4th, 2013

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins

blueberry muffins top small

When we lived in Wisconsin, about the middle of July, we would go pick blueberries. It was the greatest thing ever! We came home with mounds of fresh berries and I was instantly motivated to begin making blueberry pancakes, muffins, etc. One of our neighbors always made blueberry muffins that were so delicious that the memory of them still lives on. However, they were loaded with butter and sugar and refined flour. So over the years I have made many attempts to try to satisfy that craving of fresh blueberry muffins and this recipe totally hits the spot! The original is here. I have tweaked it a little of course, and the result is delicious. I made this a big batch for my hungry crew of teenagers, but half of this amount will make 12 regular sized muffins.

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins

2 c. almond milk, other milks would be fine

2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar

1 3/4 c. pastry flour

1 c. whole wheat flour

1 c. all-purpose flour

1 tbsp. baking soda

2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 c. ground flax

1/4 tsp. salt

3/4 c. pure maple syrup

1/2 c. canola oil

2 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. almond

3 cups fresh blueberries

3/4 c. chopped walnuts (optional)

Streusel Topping

2 tbsp. all-purpose flour

2 tbsp. sucanat

2 tbsp. Earth Balance, softened

1 tsp. cinnamon

Combine almond milk and vinegar in a bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the flours, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and flax. In a smaller bowl, combine the syrup, oil, vanilla, and almond. In another small bowl, mix the ingredients for the streusel topping. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and prepare muffin pan. I used muffin papers and they worked great. Combine the flour mixture, milk mixture, and the syrup all together in the large bowl and stir until just moistened. Gently mix in the blueberries and walnuts. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full and lightly sprinkle the streusel on top. Put in oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Wait 15 minutes to eat so you don’t burn your tongue on a hot blueberry.

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013

Vegan Ice Cream

So this summer heat wave has left me looking for ways to avoild cooking, still, and ways to create something cool, refreshing and delicious. This recipe was adapted from many I saw on-line. This is so simple to make. It is ice cream in a bag. Yes, a bag. It has only three ingredients and is done start to finish in about 20-30 minutes. I made this with a group of girls that were ages 8-11. They loved it! I made it again with my family and it was great. So cool and easy and refreshing.

Vegan Ice Cream

1 c. milk (I used almond milk, Almond Breeze brand)

2 tbsp. sucanat

1/2 tsp. vanilla

quart sized zip lock baggies

gallon sized zip lock baggies

rock salt

ice

In one quart sized zip lock baggie, put the milk, sucanat, and vanilla. Squeeze the air out of the bag and seal it closed. Shake it around gently to mix the ingredients well. In one gallon sized baggie, put 1/2 c. rock salt and 3 c. ice. Add the sealed pint sized baggie and then add more ice. About 5 cups. Squeeze the air out this bag and seat it shut. Now move the bag, side to side, upside down and around. Anyway to keep it moving. Do this for about 10 minutes. You will notice that the baggie with the milk in it will start to freeze and become solid. Yay! When it is done to your liking, take it out of the bag with the ice and wipe it off. If you don’t do this, you may get salt flavor in your ice cream. Yuck. I ate mine with fresh raspberries. You won’t believe how easy and yummy this turns out.

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

Banana Maple Cookies

banana cookie small 2

I have two teenage boys that run cross country every weekday morning. If you have ever been around teenage boys, you know they can eat a lot (at least mine do!), and if you add in running several miles a day in the summer, then you know that you better plan on having a TON of food in the house ready to eat every day. I try to have lots of snacks on hand to help refuel their growing bodies and this cookie is one delicious snack that you can feel good about them eating. Sometimes I make the cookie dough and bake one batch at a time, keeping the dough in the refrigerator, so the cookies are fresh every single day. We all love these cookies.

Banana Maple Cookies

3/4 c. whole wheat flour

1 c. plus 1 tbsp. all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

3/4 tsp. salt

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1 1/4 c. oatmeal

2 tbsp. raw millet

3/4 c. walnuts, chopped coarsely

1/2 c. plus 1 tbsp. Earth Balance, softened

1/4 c. sucanat

1/2 c. pure maple syrup

1 c. mashed banana

egg substitute for 2 eggs (I used the Egg Replacer brand)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Mix up the substitute for the eggs in a small bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the first six dry ingredients, through the nutmeg. Add in the oats, walnuts and millet and stir to combine. In a separate small bowl, add the softened Earth Balance, sucanat, pure maple syrup, banana, and egg substitute. Mix these wet ingredients together well. Add the wet into the dry and mix until well combined. The dough will be stiff. Use a cookie scoop or form golf ball size cookies and put on the prepared pan. They do not spread too much, so you can place them about one inch apart. Place in oven and cook for 8 – 10 minutes, until they are barely turning brown. Let cool for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Super Tasty Granola

I have spent the last few days camping on the coast in California with my family and lots of extended family. So it has been a while since I have written anything, but I am back and I am excited to share some of my favorite traveling and camping recipes. Any time I travel I spend quite a bit of time preparing food to take with me since my kids are frequently hungry and it is such a pain to try to find fast vegan food on the road. This granola recipe is so delicious and not too hard to make. We eat it for breakfast when we are camping and I love it for a snack while driving long distances. It is really great as a treat with a bowl of soy or coconut milk yogurt and fresh fruit. If I make this at home I eat it all day long! The original recipe is here. I did little to change it, just eliminated the sucanat, and instead of apple sauce, I used peach puree. I also add a few extra things that I really like in granola. Oh, really, it is so yummy. My favorite thing is that there is no refined sweetener and no oil in it! This is quite a contrast to most granola recipes. So you can enjoy it without feeling too badly about it. I also double this amount so we can have it hanging around for a while.

Super Tasty Granola

2 c. rolled oats

1/2 c. almonds, chopped ( I toasted them first)

1/2 c. sunflower seeds (I toasted these first too)

1/2 c. pepitas

3/4 c. uncooked milled

1/4 c. ground flax seed

2 tbsp. chia seeds

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 c. peach puree ( original calls for apple sauce which is also great)

1/3 c. brown rice syrup

3 tbsp. almond butter

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

1 tsp. almond extract

1 to 1/2 c. dried fruit of choice ( I like raisins and dried cranberries the best)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl stir together the first nine ingredients. This is all the dry stuff. In a separate small bowl, add the next five ingredients, or all the wet stuff. Don’t add the dry fruit yet. Mix this well and add it to the dry ingredients. Stir together until everything is wet. Now add the dried fruit. It will be very sticky. Spread this onto the prepared cookie sheet and cook for 20 minutes. Take it out of the oven and stir it and cook for about 20 more minutes, or until it is lightly brown. Take it out of the oven and let it cool for about 15 minutes. Then store it in an airtight container. It lasts for a long time, but you won’t have to worry about that cause it is so delicious it will disappear fast!

 

Sunday, June 16th, 2013

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Walnut Waffles

brownie waffle small 2

This waffle recipe is divine.  It is inspired by one in Veganomicon, that has a little more oil and more sugar in it. I also added walnuts, rather than pecans, and I use sucanat instead of sugar.  I find these perfect with a little less of those ingredients and served with a scoop of non-dairy ice cream, like this one from my last post. These are not hard to put together at all and made plenty for my crew of six.

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Walnut Waffles

2 c. all-purpose flour

2/3 c. unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tbsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. salt

1 3/4 c. almond milk (other nut milks would be fine as well)

1/4 c. water

1/2 c. vanilla or plain yogurt (I used vanilla soy)

1/4 c. canola oil

1/2 c. sucanat

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla

1 c. semisweet chocolate chips

1 c. walnuts, chopped

nonstick cooking spray

Preheat your waffle iron. Mix the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the milk, water, yogurt, oil, sucanat, and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir until just moistened. When the waffle iron is hot and ready, spray with nonstick cooking spray and spoon batter according to the amounts for your waffle iron. Before putting the top down, sprinkle on chocolate chips and chopped walnuts to your liking. I use a lot! Put down the top and cook according to your directions. When they are done cooking, gently lift out with a fork and serve hot with or without ice cream. Enjoy!