Gluten free Peanut Butter Coconut Oil Cookies

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Try saying that 10 times fast.  Seriously, try it. It’s embarrassing.

peanut butter coconut oil cookies

It’s Monday, and all Mondays just need cookies. All the cookies. It’s really the only way to combat the exhaustion, the heavy workloads, the anxiety and the stress of an upcoming week, right?

Soft and chew coconut oil cookies

I thought so.

Chew peanut butter cookies

Today’s recipe is 100% inspired by my friend Ali’s decadent looking coconut oil chocolate chip cookies. I’ve been lusting after them since they first appeared on her blog and knew this weekend was the perfect time to craft my own coconut oil cookie, using a few different ingredients. I knew instantly that I wanted to make these gluten free, primarily because I was out of all purpose flour. However, it worked out perfectly because I was able to gift these soft, chewy and delicious cookies to my friend with a gluten allergy, so it all worked out!

Amazing chewy cookies

I also knew peanut butter had to happen. I’m 1600% addicted to it and I knew if it didn’t find its way into a recipe soon, I’d keep spoonfeeding it into my mouth without any shame. That and I had peanut butter chips, which are even more addicting than regular peanut butter itself because you can just pop them into your mouth. They are the most delicious and the most dangerous ingredient to enter my kitchen since a bottle of wine.

peanuts

I was a little skeptical that this recipe would trump my favorite low-fat chocolate chip cookies or my peanut butter chocolate chip cookies, but holycrap, did they. The coconut oil gives them just the slightest coconut flavor, so if you’re not a fan of the flavor, don’t worry, it’s not overwhelming. I love Carrington Farms because it comes in this awesome little jar that make measuring a BREEZE.

Every bite is SO moist, so chewy and so incredibly tasty, you probably won’t stop at just one. You might have 6 and then immediately do a Jillian Michaels 30 day shred to combat the calories. You just might.

Gluten free Peanut Butter Coconut Oil Cookies

perfect peanut butter cookies

CLICK HERE FOR THE PRINTABLE VERSION OF THIS RECIPE!

Serves about 16. Recipe adapted and inspired by Gimme Some Oven.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Chill time: 24 hours
Cook time: About 12 – 14 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Carrington Farms coconut oil, softened but not melted
  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (not natural)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 large brown egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup gluten-free all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/2 teaspoon xantham gum
  • 2 teaspoons corn starch
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Dash of salt
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped peanuts

Directions: 

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the coconut oil, peanut butter, brown sugar, white sugar, egg and vanilla. Beat until creamy, about 3 – 4 minutes.
  2. In another bowl, whisk the gluten-free frlou, xantham gum, corn starch, baking soda and dash of salt in another bowl. Add the flour mixture to the creamy peanut butter mixture, mixing well after the addition until a dough forms. Remove the whisk attachment and mix in the peanut buter chips and peanuts with a wooden spoon.
  3. Using a small ice cream scoop, scoop out 12 cookies onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Cover tightly with foil and chill for at least 24 hours.
  4. Once chilled, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake the cookies for about 12 – 14 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool on the pan and then move to a wire cooling rack. Let cool completely then enjoy!

Nutritional information per serving (1 cookie):

Calories: 300
Fat: 14.5 grams
Carbohydrates: 29 grams
Fiber: 4.5 grams
Protein: 7.2 grams
Weight Watchers Points: 7

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Pumpkin Apple Lentil Muffins (Gluten-free)

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Sneak in some extra protein to your morning routine with these luscious pumpkin apple lentil muffins, made with an assortment of Bob’s Red Mill healthy products!

Gluten free lentil muffins

This morning is going to be one of those mornings where I forget pouring my coffee into a mug and instead just guzzle it directly from the pot. Good thing I work from home where such practices are widely acceptable on account that the only living things who will witness the act have four legs and can’t speak. But don’t worry, that won’t stop them from immensely judging me.

lentils

I’m going to saveur these moments because when I enter back into the world of full-time office employment, such practices will be frowned upon. I’m also working on trying to adapt to a normal routine again, which is proving more difficult than I first imagined. When you get used to working from home, you get used to some comforts. For example, your showers move from 6:30 am to 3:30 pm, and they happen only because your hair is so caked with flour and batter you can’t get a brush through it. Your wardrobe of skinny pencil skirts and chiffon blouses quickly turn into oversized t-shirts and yoga pants, many of which have these strange stains you can’t figure out where they came from.

best muffins

Grease? Months of flour? Butter? Your hair is no longer styled, but simply plopped into a high bun. Instead of engaging and intelligent conversations with colleagues and like-minded adults, my conversations now involve a high-pitched voice and a “whose a good boy” after every sentence. The giant closet of shoes have been replaced by flip flops, high boots and Keds. The saddest part is that one can go with spinach in their teeth from 2 – 6pm because no one is around to tell them so.

apples

Such a glamorous life, don’t you think? These reasons, among many (which heavily involve my sad, pathetic bank account) are reasons why I’m excited and nervous to get back to a routine and a 9-5. To further help prep myself for such a transition, I’ve been making goodies that I can eat and go when I’m inevitably running to catch the bus, like these pumpkin apple lentil muffins!

perfect soft muffin

Each muffin is loaded with protein (thank you Bob’s Red Mill lentils and peanut butter) so it keeps you full well into lunchtime (has your stomach ever grumbled in a conference room full of people? Not pretty). Plus it’s made with fabulous fall produce, like pumpkin and apples, which make every bite that much more enjoyable. Not to mention they are completely gluten-free, which means no post-wheat bloat in those tiny little skirts.

Maybe transitioning won’t be so difficult after all.

Pumpkin Apple Lentil Muffins (Gluten-free)

Luscious glazed muffins2

CLICK HERE FOR THE PRINTABLE VERSION OF THIS RECIPE!

Yields about 14 muffins.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: About 15 – 16 minutes

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup high quality all purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1/3 cup almond meal
  • 3/4 teaspoon Bob’s Red Mill xanthum gum
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie mix
  • 1 large egg, slightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup lentil puree* (see below)
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup apple butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 large apple, chopped

For the glaze:

  • 1 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons light cream

*To make lentil puree, simply cook 1 cup of Bob’s Red Mill red lentils as the package indicates. Once fully cooked, place into a food processor and pulse with 1/4 cup of water until pureed (mixture will resemble canned pumpkin or almond butter).

Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line a muffin tin with paper liners. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, almond meal, xanthum gum, baking powder and pumpkin pie spice. Make a center into the middle and add in the egg, lentil puree, peanut butter, pumpkin puree, brown sugar, applesauce and apple butter. With a wooden spoon, stir the mixture until fully combined. Gently fold in the pecans and apples.
  3. Spoon the batter into the paper liners, filling about 3/4 the way full. Bake for about 14 – 16 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool slightly.
  4. Meanwhile, make the glaze by whisking the powdered sugar and light cream together. While the muffins are still slightly warm, glaze.

Nutritional information per serving (1 muffin)

Calories: 173
Fat: 7.5 grams
Carbohydrates: 25.8 grams
Fiber: 1.6 grams
Protein: 4 grams
Weight Watchers Points: 5

Creamy Corn Chowder

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This creamy corn chowder is a great use for the rest of your favorite summer sweet corn!

Best corn chowder ever

I might, finally, be ready to open up the cans of pumpkin stashed in my pantry. I was pushing it off and pushing it off, but now, as the leaves start to fall off our trees and my body subconsciously yearns for chunky sweaters and horror movies, I can’t stop thinking of turning all the things into pumpkin.

fresh-corn-500x432

I blame the internet and the food bloggers who started making pumpkin pies in August.

Perfect corn chowder

But I’m not saying goodbye to summer without one last recipe that uses it’s fabulous bounty. This creamy corn chowder is made with the rest of that summer sweet corn, peppers and fleshy avocados. As much as I hate to say goodbye to my favorite produce, I have to say I’m a little excited to welcome in the superstars of Autumn, like squashes, pumpkins and crisp apples.

fresh corn

I think this soup is the perfect transition for me. It doesn’t scream summer like my strawberry ice cream but it’s not 100% fall like my whole wheat pumpkin bread. It’s right in the middle. It’s made with summer ingredients but is best served warm, which makes it a great dinner table addition for those crispy fall evenings. It’s the best of both worlds, I think.

Creamy end of summer corn chowder

And there’s bacon. And avocado. So, duh.

Creamy Corn Chowder

luscious chunky soup

CLICK HERE FOR THE PRINTABLE VERSION OF THIS RECIPE!

Serves about 6.
Prep time: 10 – 12 minutes
Cook time: About 15 minutes

Ingredients: 

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper, chopped
  • 5 1/2 cups fresh corn (or about 6 ears)
  • 2 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • Crispy french bread for garnish
  • Shredded parmesan for garnish

Directions: 

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil. Add a dash of salt. Remove the husks and the hair from the corn. Rinse off each ear to remove any remaining hairs. Add the corn, cover and cook for about 3 – 5 minutes, or until corn is cooked. Remove from heat and let sit in water for an additional 2 – 4 minutes. Let cool completely and then slice corn kernels off the cob with a knife, discarding the cobs.
  2. Melt the butter in a dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the shallots and cook about 3 minutes, or until softened. Add the pepper and cook another 4 – 5 minutes, or until softened. Add 5 cups of corn and chicken broth. Mix in the rosemary, thyme and salt and pepper. Bring mixture to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Let simmer for about 10 minutes or until tender.
  3. Pour the soup into a large blender and blend until pureed. Return the soup to the dutch oven. Mix in remaining corn, 3 slices of chopped bacon and heavy cream. Stir to combine. Heat another 5 minutes, or until warmed.
  4. Pour into 6 bowls and garnish with remaining chopped bacon, avocado pieces, crispy bread and parmesan cheese. Add some pepper to garnish.

Nutritional information per serving:

Calories: 243.5
Fat: 13 grams
Carbohydrates: 24.6 grams
Fiber: 3 grams
Protein: 6.6 grams
Weight Watchers Points: 6

Simple Strawberry Ice Cream

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Savor those last few days of summer with this easy and light simple strawberry ice cream!

simple strawberry ice cream

I have to give my friend Gina a big HIGH-FIVE for her post a few days ago. She shared this beautiful fig frozen yogurt and wrote a perfect dietribe about how we need to stop wishing away seasons just because we’re excited for the next one. I could not agree more. As much as I love fall, I’m still not ready for summer to go. And this simple strawberry ice cream on the 5th day of September is complete proof of that.

perfect ice cream

I love pumpkin everything, apples are my jam and I could (and probably would) marry a butternut squash if it was socially acceptable. But you know what else I love just as much? Fresh, juicy heirloom tomatoes, gorgeous figs, plump strawberries and zucchini. Don’t even get me started on cherries. I’m just not ready yet to say goodbye to these luscious pieces of summer produce.

Creamy strawberry ice cream

And I’m not going to. So while the rest of you may be making ALLTHETHINGS pumpkin, soup and the like, I’ll be eating ice creams, making zucchini cakes and biting into giant heirlooms as if they were apples. I mean, that doesn’t mean I haven’t yet indulged in a PSL or started googling knee-high riding boots, because I have. But I’ve also been sweating out 45 pounds every time I take Oscar out, so the thought of fall is about as far away as my birthday in my mind (which happens to be in December).

Soft serve ice cream

So please, for the love of all the beautiful produce still showing up at the farmers market, can we stop wishing away our days?

Simple Strawberry Ice Cream

Creamy strawberry ice cream2

CLICK HERE FOR THE PRINTABLE VERSION OF THIS RECIPE!

Serves about 8.
Prep time: >5 minutes
Chill time: 3 hours+

Ingredients: 

  • 1 1/2 cups ripe strawberries, hulled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons low-fat milk (I used 2%)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup light cream
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons pure strawberry preserves

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, mix the chopped strawberries and lemon juice together. Cover and let sit.
  2. In another bowl, whisk the sugar, low-fat milk, heavy cream, light cream, vanilla and strawberry preserves together with a whisk until combined (and sugar is dissolved).
  3. Mix in 1 1/4 cup of the strawberries and cover with saran wrap. Chill for at least an hour.
  4. Once chilled, pour the mixture into the freezer basin of your ice cream maker. Turn on and let churn for about 15 minutes. Add in the remaining strawberries and churn for another 5 – 10 minutes, or until soft, thick and creamy.
  5. Serve immediately or freeze for a firmer consistency.

Nutritional information per serving (about 1/2 cup):

Calories: 222.5
Fat: 10.5 grams
Carbohydrates: 25.6 grams
Fiber: >1 gram
Protein: 1.8 grams
Weight Watchers Points: 6

Easy Chicken Tortilla Soup

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If you’re a soup lover and could eat it all year long, you’ll love this super easy chicken tortilla soup! Just a handful of ingredients is needed!

Best chicken tortilla soup

I’ve always been a “closet” chef. As a kid, I was always experimenting with ingredients, flavors and products in the kitchen (much to my poor brothers, the taste testers, dismay). Granted 99% of them were horrible, but it was still the act of creating them that I loved the most.

soups

That bug to invent exciting recipes hasn’t gone away, and thanks to my job at SheKnows, I’m constantly pushing the envelope with my dishes. It’s exciting, but still overwhelming at the same time. When you’re making something new that you’ve never made before, there’s always that chance of failure, that worry that it’ll turn out terribly. Normally that’s not an issue, but when you’re on the tight budget I am, any ingredients that are wasted are a complete loss of money.

One pot tortilla soup

Because of my job, I rarely make the same thing twice. Unless it’s really, really good. And this easy chicken tortilla soup falls right into that bucket. I made it a few weeks ago and since it’s been made twice. My husband, whose not a huge soup fan, requested it again before I leave for 15 days down under.

Best chicken tortilla soup2

I love complex, exciting recipes, but I also love simple, easy and flavorful. This soup isn’t just easy, it’s very budget friendly and uses ingredients you probably already have on hand. The best part about it is that it doesn’t taste easy, or budget friendly. It tastes like you spent 14 hours stewing it with the fanciest of ingredients.

Spicy chicken tortilla soup

It just warms your soul, and what’s better than that after a long day.

Easy Chicken Tortilla Soup

One pot easy chicken tortilla soup

Serves 5.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 – 25 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 1/2 shallots, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
  • 1 habanero, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 large bell pepper, chopped
  • 5 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup beer (I used an amber ale)
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can of diced tomatoes with chiles, undrained
  • 3 cups shredded chicken (I used this crock pot recipe)
  • Juice from two limes
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil
  • 1 avocado, pitted and chopped
  • 1 cup part-skim cheese
  • 1 flour tortilla, toasted and chopped

Directions: 

  1. In a large dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the shallots, garlic clove, jalapeño, habanero and bell pepper. Cook about 4 – 5 minutes, or until vegetables are softened. Pour in the beer, chicken broth and tomatoes. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce to low.
  2. Add the shredded chicken, 3/4 cup of the cilantro, 1/4 cup of the basil, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper and the juice from the two limes. Let simmer another 5 minutes and remove from heat.
  3. Pour the soup into five bowls and garnish with sliced avocado, shredded cheese and chopped tortilla.

Nutritional information per serving (1 bowl):

Calories: 392
Fat: 14 grams
Carbohydrates: 20.4 grams
Fiber: 5 grams
Protein: 24.4 grams
Weight Watchers Points: 7

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