Coconut Chocolate Chunk Energy Bites

oat chocolate coconut

Ingredients (serves ~20 bites):

  • 1 ½ cup Quick Cooking Oats
  • ½ cup natural almond butter
  • 3 ½ tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 ½ tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 3 tsp hemp hearts
  • ½ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chunks, chopped
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp ground sea salt

Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats and room temperature almond butter. Mix thoroughly.
  2. Add in the melted coconut oil. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Combine the rest of the ingredients with regular mixing. Fold in the chocolate chunks last.
  4. Roll in to bite-sized balls and store in the refrigerator.
  5. Enjoy chilled.  🙂

Chocolate Chunk Energy Bites… with a surprise ingredient!

Guess what these energy bites are made of?! Primarily CHICKPEAS! Who would have thought?

Chickpeas are a low fat alternative to use in many recipes. Chickpeas are also a great plant-based source of protein, fibre, B vitamins, and iron. Tonight I am hosting a class on this Versatile Bean at our Sobeys Stratford. This is one of the few recipes I came up with to demonstrate this little bean’s great versatility! More recipes will be coming your way after our class.

chocolate chunk energy bites

Ingredients (Makes ~ 24 small bites):

  • 1 ½ cups canned unsalted chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • ½ cup natural almond butter
  • 3 tbsp natural honey
  • ½ tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/3 cup + 2 tbsp Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-free Quick Cooking Oats
  • 1 1/3 cup oat flour (gluten-free Bob’s Red Mill)
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 70% cacao dark chocolate chunks

 

Directions:

  1. In a food processor, combine the rinsed/drained chickpeas, almond butter, honey, cinnamon powder, and vanilla.
  2. Process these ingredients until completely combined into a thick puree.
  3. Using a spatula, scrap the mixture from your food processor into a large mixing bowl.
  4. In the large mixing bowl, add the oats (a small amount at a time) and mix in thoroughly.
  5. Next add the maple syrup and mix.
  6. Finally, add your flour. Add ¼ cup at a time with regular mixing. (It is difficult to combine so the smaller amount at a time, the better).
  7. Fold in your dark chocolate chunks.
  8. Form the mixture into bite sized bites and place in the refrigerator for storage.
  9. Eat chilled and enjoy 🙂

Lower stress, increase blood flow, improve your mood… Down Dog!

Yoga is a great way to get your blood flowing, increase body strength and flexibility. Adding a little yoga flow to your morning routine may help you lower your stress levels, increase overall mood, enhance your activities of daily living, and much more.

Downward dog is a beginner poses in yoga and is generally offered with an add on of one-legged down dog.  What are the benefits of downward dog and what does it target in your body?

downdog

Downward Dog:

·      Stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, legs, calves, hands, and arches of the feet

·      Strengthens the arms and legs

·      Energizes the whole body

·      Increase blood flow

·      May eliminate stiffness and back pain

·      It is a great pose to assess the whole body to see where you may have tension and where you need to focus your energy

downdog-extended-leg

One-Legged Down Dog:

·      Helps strengthen the arms

·      Stretches the hamstrings

·      Stretches the hip flexors

·      Helps develop balance

·      Increase blood flow

·      Works your core muscles for balance
Take a moment each day to centre in. Stop what you’re doing, relax, focus on your breath, and just breathe. Even for just one minute! A moment of mindfulness can change your mood for the rest of the day. Adding these poses into your day to stretch and assess your body can also play a large role in improving your mood.

Coconut Chocolate Chip Protein Cookies (GF & DF)

First attempt at making cookies out of protein powder turned out quite well! These cookies are gluten-free and dairy-free.

Nutrition Facts: 100 cals per cookie, 4.4g fat, 8g carbs, 7.2g protein!

Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients: Makes 7 cookies

  • 2 scoops Genuine Health’s vanilla protein powder
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 3/4 cup Silk Unsweetened Cashew Milk
  • 1 tbsp natural almond butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp ground sea salt
  • 3 tsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 packet stevia
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp shredded coconut
  • Optional: dark chocolate chips.

Directions: 

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Mix.
  2.  Begin to add in wet ingredients with regular mixing.
  3. When all ingredients are thoroughly mixed together, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, form your batter into cookies. Press down to make flat cookies instead of ball shapes to ensure proper cooking throughout.
  4. Bake at 350F for ~15-20 minutes. Watch when the cookies begin to brown and remove from the oven. Allow to sit and cool.
  5. Enjoy! 🙂

Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies2

Cake Batter Protein Bites (No-Bake)

Cake Batter Protein Bites

It’s not my birthday… or anyone’s birthday that I know of today… BUT cake batter never gets old. These little guys are a healthier swap for my favourite childhood activity….eating the raw cake batter.. AH!!! They are super easy to make and are no-bake. 

Ingredients (makes ~16 protein balls): 

  • 2 1/2 scoops Genuine Health Vanilla Protein Powder (THIS brand gives it the real good cake batter flavour.. however you can use other vanilla protein powders as well.)
  • 1 1/2 cup Unsweetened Silk Vanilla Almond Milk
  • 1/4 cup almond meal
  • 2 tbsp quick oats (I used Hilray Gluten-Free Oats)
  • 1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1 tbsp natural almond butter, softened
  • 6 dates, pitted and mashed (microwave with 1 tbsp water for 40 seconds to soften and mash with a fork to make a paste)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of ground sea salt (to taste)
  • 2 packets of stevia (you can swap this for 1 tbsp honey)
  • Add sprinkles as desired.
  • Directions: Microwave the dates with 1 tbsp of water for 40 seconds to soften them. This will make it easier to mash them into a paste. When they are done and fully mashed, begin to combine all ingredients into a large mixing bowl except the sprinkles. Once all ingredients are thoroughly mixed together, fold in the sprinkles. Roll into bite-sized balls and store in the refrigerator in a sealed container. Enjoy chilled! 🙂

Nutrition Information (per 1 bite sized ball): 70 calories per ball, 4g fat, 5g carbs, 4g protein  

Cake Batter Protein Bites2

30-Day Ab Challenge

Morning friends! It’s almost May 1st. You know what that means? Officially a month until JUNE which means… SUMMER!

The population at the gym tends to increase over the month of May… why? Because everyone is scrambling to get their beach bod in check…am I right? I think so. I find I push my workouts a bit harder than usual knowing that summer is around the corner. I strongly believe that the “beach bod” is sustained by a healthy lifestyle and exercise regime ALL year round… but we all want to push a little harder right before summer hits. I’ve done this ab-challenge with myself multiple times around this time of the year. I thought I would share it with you. I usually add this ab routine onto the end of my usual workout.

REMEMBER: Do what works for YOU. For example, if you can’t do a plank position because it hurts your back…. swap it for a different ab exercise that works best for your body. Every one is different. These are some of my favourite ab exercises but, they may not be for you. Just follow the reps, slowly increase over the 30 days, and you will begin to strengthen your core for summer. You can divide the reps throughout the day if that works best for you as well. Every rep counts!

… so join me in the 30-day ab challenge! SUMMER HERE WE COMEEEEEEE

Last point: Abs are made in the kitchen. If you are not nourishing your body and eating well… you will not see results.

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 10.05.48 AM

Click here to download the PDF file: ab challenge

Lemon Poppy Seed Bites by Genuine Health (No Bake)

Hi friends! Check out this Lemon Poppy Seed Bite recipe created by my friends at Genuine Health. I know I’ve preached about their amazing protein powder before….but I really wasn’t kidding. Also, I just tried their new chocolate protein powder. I shook it up with some almond milk….. and it was delicious just like that?! No need to add fillers and sweeteners. They sure know how to make great quality and tasty products.

Lemon poppy seed bites.jpg
Ingredients:

  • 1 scoop fermented vegan proteins+ vanilla (vanilla Genuine Health protein powder can be found at Bulk Barn and Nutrition House)
  • ½ tsp poppy seeds
  • 1 lemon squeezed, and zest grated
  • 2 tbsp ground flax seed
  • ½ c coconut flour
  • ¼ c ground almonds (almond butter)
  • ¼ c ground pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 6 tbsp unsweetened vanilla almond milk

Coating:

  • ¼ c unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 2 tbsp poppy seeds

Directions:

1. Place almonds and pumpkin seeds in food processor. Pulse until  coarsely ground. Place in separate bowl off to the side.

2. Add coconut flour, flax seed, fermented vegan proteins+ and lemon zest to food
3. processor and pulse quickly to thoroughly mix ingredients.

4. Add in maple syrup, lemon juice, almond butter and almond milk. Pulse until doughy texture is achieved.

5. Mix in ground almonds, ground pumpkin seeds, and poppy seeds by hand and roll into bite size portions.

6. In separate bowl combine coconut and poppy seeds. Roll each bite in mixture to coat as desired.

7. Makes approximately 1 dozen. They freeze well and taste great when thawed 🙂

I also calculated the nutrition facts on their recipe for you:
Per 1 serving (recipe makes 12):
Calories: 87 calories
Fat: 5.1g
Carbs: 7.1g
Protein: 4.1g